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Numbers 30:7-16

Context
30:7 and her husband hears about it, but remains silent about her when he hears about it, then her vows will stand and her obligations which she has pledged for herself will stand. 30:8 But if when her husband hears it he overrules her, then he will nullify 1  the vow she has taken, 2  and whatever she uttered impulsively which she has pledged for herself. And the Lord will release her from it.

Vows Made by Widows

30:9 “But every vow of a widow or of a divorced woman which she has pledged for herself will remain intact. 3  30:10 If she made the vow in her husband’s house or put herself under obligation with an oath, 30:11 and her husband heard about it, but remained silent about her, and did not overrule her, then all her vows will stand, and every obligation which she pledged for herself will stand. 30:12 But if her husband clearly nullifies 4  them when he hears them, then whatever she says 5  by way of vows or obligations will not stand. Her husband has made them void, and the Lord will release her from them.

30:13 “Any vow or sworn obligation that would bring affliction to her, 6  her husband can confirm or nullify. 7  30:14 But if her husband remains completely silent 8  about her from day to day, he thus confirms all her vows or all her obligations which she is under; he confirms them because he remained silent about when he heard them. 30:15 But if he should nullify them after he has heard them, then he will bear her iniquity.” 9 

30:16 These are the statutes that the Lord commanded Moses, relating to 10  a man and his wife, and a father and his young daughter who is still living in her father’s house.

1 tn The verb is the Hiphil perfect with a vav (ו) consecutive from the verb פָּרַר (parar, “to annul”). The verb functions here as the equivalent of an imperfect tense; here it is the apodosis following the conditional clause – if this is the case, then this is what will happen.

2 tn Heb “which [she is] under it.”

3 tn The Hebrew text says her vow “shall stand against her.” In other words, she must fulfill, or bear the consequences of, whatever she vowed.

4 tn The verb is the imperfect tense in the conditional clause. It is intensified with the infinitive absolute, which would have the force of saying that he nullified them unequivocally, or he made them null and void.

5 tn Heb whatever proceeds from her lips.”

6 tn The sentence uses the infinitive construct לְעַנֹּת (lÿannot, “to afflict”), which is the same word used in the instructions for the day of atonement in which people are to afflict themselves (their souls). The case here may be that the woman would take a religious vow on such an occasion to humble herself, to mortify her flesh, to abstain from certain things, perhaps even sexual relations within marriage.

7 tn Heb “or her husband can nullify.”

8 tn The sentence uses the infinitive absolute to strengthen the idea.

9 sn In other words, he will pay the penalty for making her break her vows if he makes her stop what she vowed. It will not be her responsibility.

10 tn Heb “between.”



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