Exodus 21:25

Exodus 21:25

Burning for burning, wound for wound, stripe for stripe.
] This is to be understood of burning a man's flesh with fire; of wounds made by any means, so that the blood is let out; and of blows, and the prints and marks of them; of stripes and weals where the blood is settled, and the part is turned black and blue: the Targum of Jonathan is, the price of the pain of burning for burning and indeed, in everyone of these cases, the law could not be well literally executed; for it would be very difficult to burn and wound and mangle a man exactly as he had done another: and as Favorinus F8 objects against the law of the twelve tables of the Romans concerning retaliation, how can a man make a wound in another exactly as long, and as broad, and as deep as that he has given? nor would he suffer a larger to be made, as it was not just it should; and to which may be added, that all constitutions are not alike, and burning and wounding and striping, especially in some parts, might prove mortal, and the person might die thereby; to them the law of retaliation would not be observed, the punishment would be exceeded; and it is much more agreeable to justice and equity that it should be lessened rather than increased; and it may be observed, the law of the twelve tables with the Romans, concerning maiming of members, only took place when the parties could not come to an agreement; and with respect to the Jewish law, Josephus F9 himself says, that the man that has his eye put out may receive money for it, if he is willing, which the law allows of.


FOOTNOTES:

F8 A. Gell. Noct. Attic. l. 20. c. 1.
F9 Ut supra. (Antiqu. l. 4. c. 33, 35.)
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