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A paralytic person healed,
and his sins forgiven.
went out--filled a herd of swine-rushed down a precipice, || respects, hardly to exist. For he who denies Divine inspira&c." What silly trifling is this! Some people's creeds tion, will scarcely acknowledge diabolic influence. See the will neither permit God nor the devil to work; and in several note on ver. 16. and on Luke vii. 21.
CHAPTER IX. Christ heals a puralytic person at Capernaum, 1-8. Calls Matthew, 10. Eats with publicans and sinners, at which the Pharisees are ofjended, and he vindicates his conduct, 11, 12. The disciples of John come to him and enquire about fasting, 14–17. A ruler requests him to heal his daughter, 18, 19. On his road to the ruler's house, he heals a diseased woman, 20-22. Arriving at the ruler's house, he restores the young woman to life, 23– 26. Heals two blind men, 27—31. Casts out a dumb dæmon, 32—34. Preaches and works miracles in all the cities and villages, 35. Is greatly affected at the desolate and dark state of the Jewish people, 36. Exhorts kis disciples to pray to God to send them proper instructors, 37, 38.
ND he entered into a ship, and palsy ; Son, be of good cheer ; , thy A. M. 4031 An. Olymp. passed over, « and came into his sins be forgiven thee.
An. Olymp own city.
3 And, behold, certain of the scribes 2 And, behold, they brought to him a man said within themselves, This man blasphemeth. sick of the palsy, lying on a bed : ‘and Jesus 4 And Jesus knowing their thoughts, said, seeing their faith, said unto the sick of the Wherefore think ye evil in your hearts ?
A. D. 27.
*Ch. 4. 13. — Mark 2. 3. Luke 5. 18.- .ch. 8. 10.
Ps. 199. 2. ch. 12. 25. Mark 19. 15. Luke 5. 22. & 6. 8. & 9. 47.& 11. 17.
NOTES ON CHAP. IX.
our Lord first forgives the sins, and then heals the body of Verse 1. He came into his own city.] Viz. Capernaum, the paralytic person. This appears to have been founded where he seems to have had his common residence at the on Psal. ciii. 3. Who forgireth all thine iniquities, and healeth house of Peter. See chap. iv. 13. and viii. 13. This verse all thy diseases. Here pardon precedes health. See also Psal. properly belongs to the preceding chapter.
xli. 3, 4. It may be observed also, that most people are more Verse 2. Sick of the palsy] See chap. iv. 24.
in earnest about their souls when in sickness than in health ; Lying on a bed] Klovns, a couch or sopha, such as they | and therefore are more earnest in prayer for salvation. reclined on at meals.
Verse 3. This man blasphemeth.] Baao Phueso comes either Seeing their faith) The faith of the paralytic person, and from BRATTELY TNV Onury to hurt or blust the reputation or credit the faith of those who brought him; see on Mark ii. 4. of another: or from Badeny tavs Onuous to smite with reports.
Be of good cheer) Dagta texvov, Son, take courage ! Pro- Whenever it is used in reference to God, it simply signifies, bably he began to despond, and Christ spoke thus to support to speak impiously of his nature, or attributes, or works. his faith.
Injurious speaking is its proper translation when referred to Thy sins be forgiven thee.] Moral evil has been the cause of all the natural evil in the world. Christ goes to the source of The Scribes were the literati of that time; and their learnthe malady, which is sin ; and to that as the procuring cause || ing, because not used in dependance on God, rendered them we should refer in all our afflictions. 'Tis probable that this proud, envious and obstinate. Unsanctified knowledge has paralytic person had, in the earnest desires of his heart, still the same effect: that light serves only to blind and lead entreated the cure of his soul, leaving his body to the care men out of the way, which is not joined with uprightness of of others, as the first miracle of healing is wrought on his heart. The most sacred truths often become an occasion of wul. In a state of helplessness, when we seek above all delusion, where men are under the government of their things to please God, by giving him our hearts; he often evil passions. mspires others with the care of our temporal necessities. Verse 4. Jesus knowing (odwy seeing) their thoughts] In telling It may be necessary to be observed, that it was a maxim them what the thoughts of their hearts were, (for they had among the Jews, that no diseased person could be healed, till expressed nothing publicly) he gave them the fullest proof all kis sins were blotted out. See Nedarim, fol. 41. Hence ll of his power to forgive sins; because God only can forgive
A. MI. 4031.
Jesus has power to forgive sins. ST. MATTHEW.
Matthew is called. 5 For whether is easier, to say, Thy| 8 But when the multitudes saw it, A. M 4031, An. Olymp. sins be forgiven thee; or to say, “ Arise, they marvelled, and glorified God, An. Olymp. and walk ?
which had given such power unto 6 But that ye may know that the Son of man men. hath power on earth "to forgive sins, (then saith * And as Jesus passed forth from thence, he to the sick of the palsy,) Arise, take up thy he saw a man, named Matthew, sitting at the bed, and go unto thine house.
receipt of custom: and he saith unto him, 17 And he arose, and departed to his house. Follow me.
And he arose, and followed him.
* Isai. 35. 6. John 5. 8.- Isai. 13. 25. Mic. 7. 18.
e Mark 2. 14. Luke 5. 27.
sins; and God only can search and know the heart. Jesus imitates this paralytic person. He who does not rise, and pronounced the man's sins forgiven--and gave the Scribes i stand upright, but either continues grovelling on the earth, the fullest proof of his power to do so, by telling them or falls back as soon as he is got up, is not yet cured of his what, in the secret of their souls, they thought on the spiritual palsy. When we see a penitent enabled to rejoice subject.
in hope of God's glory, and to walk in the way of bis God sounds the secrets of all hearts—no sin escapes his commandments; he affords us all the proof which we can notice ; how senseless then is a sinner to think he sins securely reasonably require, that his conversion is real: the proof when unseen by men. Let us take heed to our hearts, as sufficient to satisfy himself, is the witness of the Holy Spirit in well as to our conduct, for God searches out, and condemns his own heart; but this is a matter of which those who are all that does not spring from, and leads not to himself. without, cannot judge: they must form their opinion from
Verse 5. For whether is easier, to say, Thy sins be forgiren his conduct, and judge of the tree by its fruits. thee; or to say, Arise, and walk ?] Both are equally easy and Verse 8. When the multitudes saw it, they marrelled] Instead eguully dificult ; for both require unlimited power to produce of slave2say wondered, the Codex Vatic. and Cod. Bezæ, with them. And every thing is equally easy to that power
which several other MSS. and Versions have spc6nAngay feared. In the is unlimited. A universe can be as easily produced by a Gothic, and one copy of the Itala, both readings are consingle act of the Divine Will, as the smallest elementary part joined thus: And the multitudes seeing it, wondered and feared, of matter.
and glorified God. Wondered at the miracle : feared to The common punctuation of the above passage almost offend against such power and goodness, and glorified God destroys the sense: the comma should be placed after eusier, for the works of mercy which he had wrought. and to say, made the first part of the question,
That which to the doctors of the law, the worldly-wise and Verse 6. But that ye may know, &c.] External miracles prudent, is a matter of scandal, is to the humble, an occasion are the proofs of internal ones. Three miracles are wrought of glorifying the Most High. Divine things make a deeper in this case.—(I mean, by miracle, something produced or impression on the hearts of the simple multitude than on known that no power is capable of but that which is those of the doctors, which, puffed up with a sense of their omnipotent; and no knowledge adequate to, but that which is own wisdom, refuse to receive the truth, as it is in Jesus. omniscient.) The miracles are these: Ist. The remission of | The conversion of one rebellious soul is a greater miracle, the poor man's sins. 2d. The discernment of the secret and more to be admired, than all that can be wrought on thoughts of the Scribes. 3d. The restoring of the paraly- inanimate creatures. He who sees a sinner converted from tic, in an instant, to perfect soundness. Thus, one miracle the error of his way, sees a miracle wrought by eternal becomes the proof and establishment of another. Never was power and goodness. May such miracles be multiplied ! a clearer proof of omnipotent energy and mercy, brought
Verse 9. Numed Matthew] Generally supposed to be the under the senses of man. Here is an absolutely perfect same who wrote this history of our blessed Lord. miracle wrought: and here are absolute incontestible proofs The receipt of custom] The custom-house, Twor—the that the iniracle was wrought: and the conclusion is the place where the taxes levied by the Romans, of the Jews, were fullest demonstration of the divinity of the ever-blessed collected. Jesus.
Follow me] That is, become my disciple. Arise, take up thy bed] Being enabled to obey this com- And he arose, and followed him.] How blessed it is to be mand, was the public proof that the man was made whole. obedient to the first call of Christ-how much happiness and Such a circumstance should not pass without improvement. glory are lost by delays, though conversion at last may have A man gives proof of his conversion from sin to God, who | taken place.
Jesus reproves the Pharisees
A.D. 27. An. Olymp. CCI. 3.
10 [ And it came to pass, as Jesus | them, They
They that be whole need A. M. 4051. An. Disip. sat at meat in the house, behold, many not a physician, but they that are
publicans and sinners came and sat sick. down with him and his disciples :
13 But go ye and learn what that meaneth, '11 And when the Pharisees saw it, they said "I will have mercy, and not sacrifice : for I am unto his disciples, Why eateth your Master not come to call the righteous, but sinners to with publicans and sinners ?
repentance. 12 But when Jesus heard that, he said unto 14 | Then came to him the disciples of
Verse 10. Sat at meat in the house] Viz. of Matthew, who, Verse 13. I will have mercy, and not sacrifice) Quoted it appears from Luke y. 29, made a great feast on the from 1 Sam. xv. 22. These are remarkable words.—We may occasion, thus testifying his gratitude for the honour done understand them as implying, Ist. That God prefers an act bim; and that his friends and acquaintances might profit by of mercy shewn to the necessitous, to any act of religious the teaching of his new master, he invites them to the enter-worship to which the person might be called at that time.-tainment that was honoured by the presence of Christ. Ilis Both are good; but the former is the greater good, and companions, it appears, were not of the most creditable should be done in preference to the other. Adly. That the whole kind. They were tar-gatherers (see chap. v. 46.) and sinners, sacrificial system was intended only to point out the infinite kuigranos, a word which I believe in general signifies heathens, mercy of God to fallen man, in his redemption by the blood throughout the gospels, and in several other parts of the New of the new covenant. And 3dly. That we should not rest in Testament. See, among others, chap. xi. 19. xxvi. 45. the sacrifices, but look for the mercy and salvation prefigured Mark ii. 15–17. xiv. 41. Luke v. 30–32. vi. 32–34. by them. This saying was nervously translated by our vii. 34, 37, 39. xv. 1, 2, 7, 10. xix. 7. xxiv. 7. John ix. 16, ancestors, Ic pylle mildheortnesse næs onrægènesse, I will 24, 25, 31. Rom. v. 8. Gal. ii. 15. Heb. vii. 26. 1 Pet. mildheartedness, and not sucrifice. iv, 18. in most, if not all of which places, it evidently refers to Go ye and learn] 1220 x8 tse velimmed, a form of speech the character or state of a Gentile, or Heathen. See also the in frequent use among the Rabbins, when they referred to any notes on these passages.
fact or example in the Sacred Writings. Nothing tends more Verse 11. When the Pharisees saw it] He who, like a to humble pretenders to devotion, than to shew them that Pharisee, never felt himself indebted to infinite mercy for his they understand neither Scripture nor religion, when, relying own salvation, is rarely solicitous about the salvation of others. on external performances, they neglect love to God and man, The grace of Christ alone inspires the soul with true benevo- which is the very soul and substance of true religion. True lence. The self-righteous Pharisees considered it equal to holiness has ever consisted in faith working by love. legal defilement, to sit in company with tax-gatherers and I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners] Most of heathens. It is certain that those who fear God should not the common editions add, s5 Metavov@, unto repentunce; but associate, through choice, with the workers of iniquity; and this is omitted in the Coder Vatic. and Bezæ, sixteen others, should only be found with them when transacting their both the Syriuc, both the Persic, Ethiop. Armen. Gothic, secular business, requires it, or when they have the prospect Anglo-Saxon, all the Itala except three, the Vulgate, Clemens of doing good to their souls.
Roman. Origen, Basil, Jerom, Augustin, Ambrose and Barnabas. Verse 12. They that be whole need not a physician] A The omission is approved by Mill and Bengel.-Griesbuch common proverb, which none could either misunderstand or leaves it out of the text. misapply. Of it, the reader may make the following use: Verse 14. Thy disciples fast not?] Probably meaning that
1. Jesus Christ represents himself here as the sovereign they did not fast so frequently as the others did, or for the Physician of souls. 2. That all stand in need of his healing same purposes, which is very likely, for the Pharisees had
3. That men must acknowledge their spiritual many superstitious fasts. They fasted in order to have lucky maladies, and the need they have of his mercy, in order to dreams—to obtain the interpretation of a dream, or to avert be healed by him. 4. That it is the most inveterate and the evil import of a dream. They also fasted often, in order dangerous disease the soul can be afflicted with, to imagine to obtain the things they wished for. The tract, Tuanith, is itself whole, when the sting of death, which is sin, has full of these fasts, and of the wonders performed thus by the pierced it through, in every part.
The system of the Pharisees
inconsistent with Christianity. A. M4031. John, saying, "Why do we and the unto an old garment, for that which A. M. ... An. Olymp. Pharisees fast oft, but thy disciples is put in to fill it up taketh from An. Olymp. fast not?
the garment, and the rent is made 15 And Jesus said unto them, Can the chil-worse. dren of the bride-chamber mourn, as long as the 17 Neither do men put new wine into old bride-groom is with them? but the days will bottles : else the bottles break, and the wine come, when the bride-groom shall be taken runneth out, and the bottles perish : but they from them, and “then shall they fast.
put new wine into new bottles, and both are 16 No man putteth a piece of new cloth preserved.
a Mark 2. 18, &c. Luke 5. 33,&c. & 18. 12.
Jolin S. 29.
Acts 13. 2, 3. & 14. 23. 1 Cor. 7. 5.
-Or, raw, or un wrought cloth.
Verse 15. Can the children of the bride-chamber] Nome Qwvos. | HOURS ; and this absurdity continues in some Christian Or, you coov, bride-groom, as the Cod. Bezæ and several Versions | churches to the present day. For more on fasting, see chap. have it. These persons were the companions of the bride- || vi. 16. groom, who accompanied him to the house of his father-in- Verse 10. No man putteth a piece of new cloth] Oudes de law when he went to bring the bride to his own home. | επιβαλλει επιβλημα ρακους αγναφου επι ιματιω παλαιω.
No man The marriage-feast, among the Jews, lasted seven days; but putteth a patch of unscoured cloth upon an old garment. This the new married woman was considered to be a bride for is the most literal translation I can give of this verse, to thirty days. Marriage feasts were times of extraordinary | convey its meaning to those who cannot consult the original. festivity, and even of riot, amnong several people of the East. Paxos ayva@or is that cloth which has not been scoured, or
When the bride-groom shall be taken from them, &c.] There was which has not passed under the hand of the fuller, who is only one annual fast observed in the primitive church, called called yva Devs in Greek: and minux signifies a piece put by our ancestors, lencten-fæsten, the spring fast; and by us, on, or what we commonly term a patch. Lens: by the Greeks tegigaxosn, and by the Latins, Quadri- It-taketh from the garment] Instead of closing up the gessima. This fast is pretended to be kept by many in the rent, it makes a larger, by tearing away with it the whole present day, in commemoration of our Lord's forty days fast breadth of the cloth, over which it was laid ; aiges youş to in the wilderness; but it does not appear that, in the purest | Tanp was autou—it taketh its fulness or whole breadth from ages of the primitive church, genuine Christians ever pretended the garment; this I am persuaded is the meaning of the that their quadrigessimal fast was kept for the above purpose. || original, well expressed by the Latin, or Itala of the c. Their fast was kept merely to commemorate the time during | Bezæ, Tollit enim plenitudo ejus de vestimento. « It takes which Jesus Christ lay under the power of death ; which was away its fulness from the garment.” about FORTY HOURS : and it was in this sense they understood Verse 17. New wine into old bottles] It is still the custom, the words of this text: the days will come, &c. with them, | in the eastern countries, to make their bottles of gout-skins ; the bride-groom meant Christ; the time in which he was taken | if these happened to be old, and new wine were put into away, his crucifixion, death, and the time he lay in the them, the violence of the fermentation must necessarily burst grave. Suppose him dying about 12 o'clock on what is them, and therefore newly made bottles were employed for called Friday, and that he rose about four on the morning of the purpose of putting that wine in, which had not yet gone his own day (St. John says, Early, while it was yet dark, | through its state of fermentation. The Institutes of Christ, chap. xx. 1.) the interim makes forty hours, which was the and those of the Pharisees, could never be brought to accord: true primitive Lent, or quadrigessimal fast. It is true that an attempt to combine the two systems, would be as absurd many in the primitive church were not agreed on this as it would be destructive. The old covenant made way subject, as Socrates in his Church History, book v. chap. 22, for the new, which was its completion and its end: but with says,
“ Some thought they should fast one day; others two ; | that old covenant, the new cannot be incorporated. others more."--Different churches also were divided concern- Christian prudence requires that the weak, and newly ing the length of the time; some keeping it three, others fire, converted, should be managed with care and tenderness. and others seven weeks: and the historian himself is puzzled To impose such duties and mortifications as are not absolutely to know why they all agreed in calling these fasts, differing necessary to salvation, before God has properly prepared so inuch in their duration, by the name of Quadrigessima, or the heart by his grace for them, is a conduct as absurd and forty days fast: the plain obvious reason appears to me to ruinous as putting piece of raw unscoured cloth on an have been simply this: They put days in the place of old garment; it is, in a word, requiring the person to do
The woman with
the issue of blood healed.
18 7. While he spake these things | 20 [ And, behold, a woman which N. 01. Al. Oly np. unto them, behold, there came a cer- was diseased with an issue of blood An. Olymp.
tain ruler, and worshipped him, say- twelve years, came behind him, and ing, My daughter is even now dead: but come touched the hem of his garment: and lay thy hand upon her, and she shall live. 21 For she said within herself, If I may but
19 And Jesus arose, and followed him, and touch his garment, I shall be whole. 50 did his disciples.
22 But Jesus turned him about, and when he
a Mark 5. 22, &c. Luke 8. 41, &c.
Mark 5. 45. Luke 8. 43.
the work of a man, while as yet he is but a little child. vants of God, through which, heavenly influences were conPreachers of the gospel, and especially those who are instru- veyed to the bodies and souls of men. This rite is still used ments in God's hand, of many conversions, have need of in certain Churches; but as there is no Holy Ghost commuch heavenly wisdom, that they may know to watch over, municated by it, some suppose it may be as well omitted. guide, and advise those who are brought to a sense of their But why is this? Is it not because there is an unfaithfulsin and dancer. Ilow many auspicious beginnings have ness in the person who lays on hands, or an unfitness been ruined by men's proceeding too hastily, endeavouring to in hiin on whom they are laid? Let the rite be restored to make their own designs take place, and to have the honour its primitive simplicity, and God will own it as he formerof that success themselves, which is due only to God. ly did. But however this may be, where is the man or
Verse 18. A certuin ruler] There were two officers in the number of men who have authority to abrogate a rite of synagogue, 233n jin chazan ha-ceneseth, the bishop or over- God's own appointment? In the appointment of men to seer of the congregation; and 20:37 089 rosh hu-ceneseth, the the sacred ministry it should never be omitted : even in head or ruler of the congregation. The Chazan takes the these degenerate days, it may still serve as a sign of the nebook of the Law, and gives it to Rosh or ruler; and he ap- cessity of the gifts and graces of that Holy Spirit, without points who shall read the different sections, &c. Jairus, who which no man can fulfil the work of the ministry, or be the is the person intended here, was in this latter sense, the ruler instrument of saving the souls of them that hear him. or governor of one of the synagogues, probably at Caper. When the inventions of men are put in the place of the ordiSee Mark v. 22. Luke viji. 4).
nances of God, the true Church of Christ is in great danger. My daughter is eren now dead] Or, my daughter was just Verse 19. Jesus arose, and followed him] Our blessed Lord Row dying; azTV ETER:UTNT:v, or, is by this time deud: i.e. as could have acted as well at a distance, as present; but he goes Mr. Wakefield properly observes, She was so ill when I left to the place, to teach his ministers not to spare either their home, that she must be dead by this time. This turn of the steps or their pains when the salvation of a soul is in quesexpression reconciles the account given here, with that in tion. Let them not think it sufficient to pray for the sick in Mark and Luke. Michaelis conjectures, that in the llebrew their closets; but let them go to their bed-sides, that they original, the words must have stood thus, nannu atah ma- may instruct and comfort them. He can have little unction tuh; which without the points, may signify either She is in prirate, who does not also give himself up to public duties. dead, or She is dying.
Verse 20. A woman which w18 diseased with an issue of To be successful in our applications to God by prayer, blood] Turn a po pouca. Mulier sanguinis profluvio laborans. forur things are requisite, and this ruler teaches us what Significatur hoc loco, fluxus muliebris, in sanis, menstruus ; they are.
in Mac, perpetuus. It would be easy to explain the nature First, A man should place bimself in the presence of and properties of the disease here mentioned; but when it God he came unto him.
is said, that prudence forbids it, the intimation itself may Stcondly, lle should humble himself sincerely before God be thought sufficiently explanatory of the disorder in ques-he fell doun before him--at his feet. Mark v. 22.
tion. There are some remarkable circumstances relative to Thirdly, lle should lay open his wants with a holy ear- this case, mentioned by St. Mark, chap. v. 25, &c. which Hestness---he besought him greatly. Mark v. 23.
shall be properly noticed in the notes on that place. Fourthly, He should have unbounded confidence in the The hem of his garment] The n'sy tsitsith, or fringes, power and goodness of Christ that his request shall be which the Jews were commanded to wear on their garinents. granted-put thy hand upon her, and she shall live. He who See Num. xv. 38. and the note there. comes in this way, to God for salvation, is sure to be heard. Verse 21. She said within herself, If I may but touch his Imposition of hands was a rite anciently used by the ser- garment] Her disorder was of that delicate nature, that