The Fifth Book of Moses, Called Deuteronomy

Chapter 25

Stripes must not exceed forty, 1-3. The ox is not to be muzzled, 4. Of raising children for a brother, 5-10. Of the immodest woman, 11, 12. Of unjust weights and measures, 13-16. The memory of Amalek is to be blotted out, 17-19.

1 "If there is a controversy between men and they come to judgment so that the judges may judge them, then they shall justify the righteous and condemn the wicked. 2 And it shall be, if the wicked man is worthy to be beaten, that the judge shall cause him to lie down and to be beaten before his face, according to his fault, by a certain number. 3 Forty stripes he may give him, but no more. Otherwise, if he should continue and beat him with many more stripes than these, then your brother would be dishonored in your eyes.

4 "You shall not muzzle the ox when he treads out the grain.

5 "If brothers dwell together, and one of them dies and has no child, the wife of the dead shall not marry outside to a stranger. Her husband's brother shall go in to her and take her for himself for a wife and perform the duty of a husband's brother to her. 6 And it shall be, that the first-born which she bears shall succeed in the name of his brother who is dead, so that his name may not become extinct in Israel. 7 And if the man does not want to take his brother's wife, then let his brother's wife go up to the gate to the elders, and say, 'My husband's brother refuses to raise up for his brother a name in Israel. He will not perform the duty of my husband's brother.' 8 Then the elders of his city shall call him and speak to him. And if he stands to it, and says, 'I do not want to take her,' 9 Then his brother's wife shall come to him in the presence of the elders, take his shoe off his foot, and spit in his face, and shall answer and say, 'So it shall be done to that man who will not build up his brother's house.' 10 And his name shall be called in Israel, 'The house of him who has his shoe removed.'

11 "When men strive together with one another, and the wife of one draws near to deliver her husband from the hand of him who smites him and puts forth her hand and takes him by the secrets, 12 Then you shall cut off her hand. Your eye shall not pity her.

13 "You shall not have in your bag diverse weights, a great and a small. 14 You shall not have in your house diverse measures, a great and a small. 15 But you shall have a perfect and just weight, and you shall have a perfect and just measure, so that your days may be lengthened in the land which the LORD your God gives you. 16 For all who do such things, and all who do unrighteously, are an abomination to the LORD your God.

17 "Remember what Amalek did to you by the way when you had come forth from Egypt, 18 How he met you by the way and smote the hindmost of you, even all who were feeble behind you, when you were faint and weary. And he did not fear God. 19 Therefore, it shall be, when the LORD your God has given you rest from all your enemies on all sides in the land which the LORD your God gives you for an inheritance to possess it, that you shall blot out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven. You shall not forget it."


Matthew Henry Commentary - Deuteronomy, Chapter 25[➚]


[v.1-3] - These verses outline the law that applies to those who cause controversy. Paul, in 2nd Corinthians 11:24, admitted to being judged by this law on several occasions.

[v.4] - Quoted in 1st Corinthians 9:9; 1st Timothy 5:18.

[v.5] - Quoted in Matthew 22:24; Mark 12:19; Luke 20:28.

[v.13-14] - These verses are commanding that the Jews be fair in their business dealings, such as when weighing or measuring for goods and services. This can also be seen in Leviticus 19:35, which says, "You shall do no unrighteousness in judgment, in weight, in measure of length or of capacity." Reference, Proverbs 11:1, 20:23.