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She makes and sells fine linen wraps,

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and she gives

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wide cloth belts

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for the Canaanites.

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She makes and sells good quality items to people who care about purity and spirituality, and she also makes and delivers

ordinary but useful items for the merchants to resell.



Linen was made from the fibers of flax. It was seen as a healthy, clean, hard-to-contaminate material. Because it was mentioned prominently in the Law as the garment the priests were to wear, it was associated with things that are holy, i.e. set apart for God.


This verb means “give, set or put” but the primary emphasis is “give.” However, this does not mean the same  thing as the English word “give” because we assume “give” means something is passed on at no charge. In Hebrew “give” can be used either of things that are sold or given away for free.


The word used here means “girdle” because it comes from the verb “to gird, or to gird up.” What did they mean by a “girdle?” They meant something that served the purpose of a belt, however, it was usually four to six inches wide and made of either leather or some fine clothe such as linen or silk, or clothe that was ornately embroidered. Their wide belts were used to hold up their long garments and to keep safe their money and usually a dagger. The context of this statement indicates it was the clothe kind of belt that she delivered to the merchants for resale.

I think it unfortunate that some translations render this word as a “sash;” that takes our minds to a piece of cloth crossing the chest at an angle and serving no purpose other than adornment. To my knowledge that kind of thing was not known in ancient times. There are statues of Roman Emperors holding a long cloth over one arm, and covering the midsection of their body, or sometimes it was also over the shoulder, but it was never a sash as we know it. The term comes from the verb “to gird” which was the function of their broad belt. A sash did not serve such a purpose.


The word “Canaanites” is used here to indicate “merchants” because that is what they were best known for. They were a seafaring people who traded with cultures on the far side of the Mediterranean Sea. These were large-scale merchants who carried their wares in ships rather than on camels, and who travelled to lands far away, rather than to nations adjacent to their own. This means that she and her servant girls supplied a large number of these items to those merchants. Obviously, a merchant could not fill his ship with the merchandize of just one supplier, but it also stands to reason that he would want to buy from suppliers that could provide him with more than a few articles at a time. The woman being described had taken the idea of a “cottage industry” to a “whole new level.”