Verse 12: Else if ye do in any wise (Heb. 10:38, 39; 2 Pet. 2:20, 21) go back, and cleave unto the remnant of these nations, even these that remain among you, and shall (Deut. 7:3) make marriages with them, and go in unto them, and they to you…
[But if ye desire, etc., כִּ֣י׀ אִם־שׁ֣וֹב תָּשׁ֗וּבוּ] For if (or, but if [Vatablus, Junius and Tremellius, similarly Pagnine], else if [Munster, English]) by turning away ye turn away (Septuagint, Jonathan, Syriac, Arabic) (or, ye draw back [Arabic], ye shall turn back [Jonathan], ye fall away), understanding, from God (Vatablus). For if by turning around ye change the design, etc. שׁוּב signifies to go back, but it is often transferred to the soul, and is to depart from the design, to change the manner of life (Masius). [What things follow in Masius, and the explanation of the remaining part of this verse, see on verse 7.]
If ye go back, from God, and from his worship and service. Go in unto them; the phrase notes the matrimonial act.
Verse 13: Know for a certainty that (Judge. 2:3) the LORD your God will no more drive out any of these nations from before you; (Ex. 23:33; Num. 33:55; Deut. 7:16; 1 Kings 11:4) but they shall be snares and traps unto you, and scourges in your sides, and thorns in your eyes, until ye perish from off this good land which the LORD your God hath given you.
[They shall be for a pit, לְפַח] For a snare [thus all interpreters]. But the Latin appears to have read פַּחַת/pit (Masius).
[And a snare, וּלְמוֹקֵשׁ] And for a stumbling-block (Montanus, Munster, Pagnine, English, Dutch, Jonathan, Syriac), a snare (Osiander, Dutch); and for a trap (Junius and Tremellius, English), an obstacle (Castalio).
They shall be snares and traps unto you: by your indulgence to them, and converse with them, you will be enticed and drawn by degrees into their errors, and impieties, and brutish lusts.
[And a stumbling-block at your side, וּלְשֹׁטֵ֤ט בְּצִדֵּיכֶם֙] A scourge in your sides [thus nearly all interpreters]; that is, with which your sides are beaten, or flogged (Vatablus). There was an ancient custom of beating the sides, Ecclesiasticus 30:12; 42:5 (Junius, Drusius, Grotius). שׁוֹטֵט is the same as שׁוֹט/scourge/whip (Drusius); and it signifies that by which we prod and beat one, so that we might urge to movement (Masius). Spurs in your sides (Tigurinus, Castalio). Ἥλους, that is, nails, is used in the place of spurs by the Septuagint (Masius); spears in your times (Syriac). In Numbers 33:55 it is read, and for thorns in your sides (Vatablus).
[And stakes in your eyes, וְלִצְנִנִ֣ים בְּעֵינֵיכֶ֔ם] And for thorns in your eyes (Montanus) [thus nearly all interpreters]; barbs (Syriac), darts (Septuagint); for knives/points, Numbers 33:55. Moses said, thorns (or knives/points) in your sides; see the annotation there; that is, with which your sides are jabbed; which is to say, afflicting you in extraordinary manner (Vatablus). The Chaldean, in the place of scourge, said, troops taking up arms against you; and, in the place of thorn, etc., rendered it, armies surrounding you: evidently because the verb שָׁטַט sometimes signifies to wander and to roam here and there for the sake of taking prey; and since צִנָּה is used, not only of a thorn, but also of a shield; he transferred it to an army that surrounds its enemies, as a shield does the body of a man, says Rabbi Salomon. Moreover, it is clear enough why these metaphors would be used of idolaters. For by the traps and snares of alluring pleasure progress in the worship of God is first impeded: Then, after the soul is once bound fast by that pleasure, it is easily impelled to every shameful thing by that, as by a whip: But soon, he is also so blinded that he is no longer able to see the shining light of truth. Now, it is evident that all these things happened to them (Masius). First, they are going to be for a trap, etc., that is, by their friendly behavior and marriages they are going to seize you, so that you might become entangled in their impieties, just as a fowler captures birds, or a hunter wild animals, with a trap and snare. Then, these nations shall nevertheless become troublesome to you: gradually they shall recover their strength, and afflict you: and they shall be the scourges of God, as it were, by which He would put you to grief; and, like thorns in your eyes, they shall become intolerable to you (Osiander). This passage is able to be taken, not only of the stumbling-block of Divine punishment and vengeance, but also of the stumbling-block of guilt (Lapide).
Scourges in your sides, and thorns in your eyes: when they have inveigled, and seduced, and thereby weakened you, then they will molest and vex you, no less than a severe scourge doth a man’s sides which are lashed by it, or than a small thorn doth the eye when it is got within it.
[Until He remove you…from the land, etc.] This was goading their souls exceedingly. For, while after the greatest hardships, which they had endured in another’s land, they, having at last gained their own possessions, appeared to themselves to be altogether happy, and in them were resting most pleasantly, no case more bitter to them was albe to be set before their eyes than a new exile (Masius on verse 3).
Until ye perish from off this good land: they shall so persecute you, and fight against you with such success, that you shall be forced to quit your own land, and wander you know not whither; which must needs be very terrible to them to think of, when they compared this present case, and plenty, and safety, with the pains, and weariness, and hazards, and wants of their former wanderings.
 Hebrew: כִּ֣י׀ אִם־שׁ֣וֹב תָּשׁ֗וּבוּ וּדְבַקְתֶּם֙ בְּיֶ֙תֶר֙ הַגּוֹיִ֣ם הָאֵ֔לֶּה הַנִּשְׁאָרִ֥ים הָאֵ֖לֶּה אִתְּכֶ֑ם וְהִֽתְחַתַּנְתֶּ֥ם בָּהֶ֛ם וּבָאתֶ֥ם בָּהֶ֖ם וְהֵ֥ם בָּכֶֽם׃
 Hebrew: יָדוֹ֙עַ֙ תֵּֽדְע֔וּ כִּי֩ לֹ֙א יוֹסִ֜יף יְהוָ֣ה אֱלֹהֵיכֶ֗ם לְהוֹרִ֛ישׁ אֶת־הַגּוֹיִ֥ם הָאֵ֖לֶּה מִלִּפְנֵיכֶ֑ם וְהָי֙וּ לָכֶ֜ם לְפַ֣ח וּלְמוֹקֵ֗שׁ וּלְשֹׁטֵ֤ט בְּצִדֵּיכֶם֙ וְלִצְנִנִ֣ים בְּעֵינֵיכֶ֔ם עַד־אֲבָדְכֶ֗ם מֵ֠עַל הָאֲדָמָ֤ה הַטּוֹבָה֙ הַזֹּ֔את אֲשֶׁר֙ נָתַ֣ן לָכֶ֔ם יְהוָ֖ה אֱלֹהֵיכֶֽם׃
 A פַּח is a bird-trap.
 מוֹקֵשׁ, a fowler’s trap or its bait, is derived from the verbal root יָקשׁ, to lure.
 Ecclesiasticus 30:12: “Bow down his neck while he is young, and beat him on the sides while he is a child, lest he wax stubborn, and be disobedient unto thee, and so bring sorrow to thine heart.”
 Ecclesiasticus 42:5: “And of merchants’ indifferent selling; of much correction of children; and to make the side of an evil servant to bleed.”
 Numbers 33:55: “But if ye will not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you; then it shall come to pass, that those which ye let remain of them shall be pricks in your eyes (לְשִׂכִּים֙ בְּעֵ֣ינֵיכֶ֔ם), and thorns in your sides (וְלִצְנִינִ֖ם בְּצִדֵּיכֶ֑ם), and shall vex you in the land wherein ye dwell.”