Ezekiel 16:4

Ezekiel 16:4

And [as for] thy nativity, in the day thou wast born
Which refers either to the time when Abraham was called out of Ur of the Chaldeans, who had before been an idolater; or rather to the time when the children of Israel were in Egypt, and there grew and multiplied, and became a numerous body of people; who, upon their coming out of it, were brought into some form, and became a nation or body politic, which may be called the day of their birth as a people; see ( Hosea 2:3 ) ; thy navel was not cut;
alluding to what is done to a newborn infant, when the midwife immediately takes care to cut the navel string, by which the child adheres to its mother, and takes in its breath and nourishment in the womb; but now, being of no longer use that way, it is cut and tied up, for the safety both of mother and child, who otherwise would be in great danger; and this denotes the desperate condition the Israelites were in when in Egypt, where they were greatly oppressed and afflicted, and in very imminent danger of being destroyed; to which the Targum refers it: neither wast thou washed in water to supple [thee]:
which also is done, to an infant as soon as born, to cleanse it from the menstruous blood, to make the flesh sleek, and smooth, and amiable; which, as Kimchi and Ben Melech observe, is done in hot water: thou wast not salted at all;
which was done, either by sprinkling salt upon it, or using salt and water F8, as a detersive of uncleanness, to prevent putrefaction, to dry up the humours, and harden the flesh, and consolidate the parts: nor swaddled at all;
to bring the several members of the body into form and shape; see ( Luke 2:7 ) ; and these things being of necessity to be done immediately, were, as Kimchi observes, lawful to be done even on a sabbath day, according to the traditions of the elders F9.


FOOTNOTES:

F8 Vid. Alex. ab Alex. Genial. Dier. l. 2. c. 25.
F9 Vid. T. Bab. Sabbat, fol. 129. 2.
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