Matthew Poole Commentary - Matthew 5:38 - 5:38

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Matthew Poole Commentary - Matthew 5:38 - 5:38

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This was the commandment of God to the magistrate, in case a woman with child were struck, and any mischief came of it, Exo_21:24; in case of damage done to a neighbour, Lev_24:20; and in the case of false witness, Deu_19:21. But in the mean time God had said to private persons, Lev_19:18, Thou shalt not avenge; and it is said, Pro_24:29, Say not, I will do to him as he hath done to me. The Pharisees had interpreted this law of God into a liberty for every private person, who had been wronged by another, to exact a satisfaction upon him, provided that he did not exceed this proportion of taking an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth, doing no more wrong to another than that other had done to him.