And shed innocent blood
The blood of innocent persons; not that any of Adam's posterity, descending from him by ordinary generation, are strictly and properly innocent, or free from sin; self-righteous persons have thought themselves, touching the righteousness of the law, blameless; and some perfectionists have pretended to be free from sin, but are not such; they who are justified by the righteousness of Christ, and washed in his blood, are, so considered, all fair and without spot; are without fault before the throne, and unreproveable in the sight of God: but, considered in themselves, are not without sin; only the man Christ Jesus is perfectly holy and free from sin, being born of a virgin, under the overshadowing of the Holy Ghost; otherwise all descending from Adam sinned in him, are conceived in sin, and polluted with it; nor can a clean thing be brought out of an unclean, no, not one: though infants may be said to be innocent in comparison of adult persons, guilty of actual transgressions, who have lived in sin, and committed many gross iniquities; as also they may be so called as being undeserving of such barbarous and inhuman usage here mentioned.
Even the blood of their sons and of their daughters, whom
sacrificed unto the idols of Canaan;
this was a further aggravation of their wickedness, that it was not only innocent blood, but the blood of their own children, they shed; their own flesh and blood, pieces of themselves; and their near alliance to them gave them no power over their lives; but, on the contrary, the nearer they were in blood to them, the greater and more horrid was their sin; and what still added to it was, that they were the idols of Canaan, of that people whom the Lord abhorred, and had drove out before them, and had given their land; to them they sacrificed them; so that here was a complication of wickedness in this affair.
And the land was polluted with blood;
with innocent blood, the blood of their own children; with the sins of murder, as the Targum; which only can be cleansed with the blood of the murderers, ( Numbers 35:33 ) , even the land which the Lord separated from all others for his people; in which his tabernacle was placed, and his worship set up, and therefore called the holy land, ( Zechariah 2:12 ) .