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Exodus 22:15-16

Context
22:15 If its owner was with it, he will not have to pay; if it was hired, what was paid for the hire covers it. 1 

Moral and Ceremonial Laws

22:16 2 “If a man seduces a virgin 3  who is not engaged 4  and has sexual relations with her, he must surely endow 5  her to be his wife.

1 tn Literally “it came with/for its hire,” this expression implies that the owner who hired it out and was present was prepared to take the risk, so there would be no compensation.

2 sn The second half of the chapter records various laws of purity and justice. Any of them could be treated in an expository way, but in the present array they offer a survey of God’s righteous standards: Maintain the sanctity of marriage (16-17); maintain the purity of religious institutions (18-20), maintain the rights of human beings (21-28), maintain the rights of Yahweh (29-31).

3 tn This is the word בְּתוּלָה (bÿtulah); it describes a young woman who is not married or a young woman engaged to be married; in any case, she is presumed to be a virgin.

4 tn Or “pledged” for marriage.

5 tn The verb מָהַר (mahar) means “pay the marriage price,” and the related noun is the bride price. B. Jacob says this was a proposal gift and not a purchase price (Exodus, 700). This is the price paid to her parents, which allowed for provision should there be a divorce. The amount was usually agreed on by the two families, but the price was higher for a pure bride from a noble family. Here, the one who seduces her must pay it, regardless of whether he marries her or not.



TIP #08: Use the Strong Number links to learn about the original Hebrew and Greek text. [ALL]
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