Butter and honey shall he eat.
&c.] As the Messiah Jesus no doubt did; since he was born in a land flowing with milk and honey, and in a time of plenty, being a time of general peace; so that this phrase points at the place where, and the time when, the Messiah should be born, as well as expresses the truth of his human nature, and the manner of his bringing up, which was in common with that of other children. (hamx) signifies the "cream of milk", as well as "butter", as Jarchi, in ( Genesis 18:8 ) , observes; and milk and honey were common food for infants: that he may know to refuse the evil, and choose the good;
meaning not knowledge of good and bad food, so as to choose the one, and refuse the other; but knowledge of moral good and evil; and this does not design the end of his eating butter and honey, as if that was in order to gain such knowledge, which have no such use and tendency; but the time until which he should live on such food; namely, until he was grown up, or come to years of discretion, when he could distinguish between good and evil; so that as the former phrase shows that he assumed a true body like ours, which was nourished with proper food; this that he assumed a reasonable soul, which, by degrees, grew and increased in wisdom and knowledge; see ( Luke 2:52 ) . (wtedl) should be rendered, "until he knows"; as (vrpl) in ( Leviticus 24:12 ) which the Chaldee paraphrase of Onkelos renders, "until it was declared to them"; and so the Targum here,
``butter and honey shall he eat, while or before the child knows not, or until he knows to refuse the evil, and choose the good.''