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xvii. 4: xix. 80.
unto him. 31 In the mean while his disciples prayed him, saying, Master, eat. 32 But he said unto them, I have meat to eat that ye know not of. 33 Therefore said the
disciples one to another, Hath any man brought him u Joburili
: 12. ought to eat ? 34 Jesus saith unto them, u My meat is to
u do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work. 35 Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh
harvest ? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and * Mate 11:37. look on the fields, 'for they are white already to harvest. u better, to be doing.
V render, that. pened. 31, 32.] The bodily thirst Say not ye . .. surely cannot be the (and hunger probably, from the time of introduction to an observation of what day) which our Lord had felt before, had was matter of fact at the time. Had the been and was forgotten in the carrying on words been spoken at of His divine work in the soul of this wanted four months to the harvest, and Samaritan woman. Although I and you had our Lord intended to express this,-is are emphatic, the words are not spoken in it conceivable that He should have thus inblame, for none was deserved: but in ful. troduced the remark ? Would not, must ness and earnestness of spirit; in a feel. not, the question have been a direct one in ing analogous to that which comes upon that case—are there not four months ?' us when called from high and holy em- &c. I know not how to account for this ployment to the supply of the body or to Say not ye that .... except that it introthe business of this world. 33.] It is
common saying which the very characteristic of the first part of this Jews, or perhaps the people of Galilee Gospel to bring forward instances of un- only, were in the habit of using. Are receptivity of spiritual meaning; compare not ye accustomed to say, that ....? ver. 11; ch. ii. 20; iii. 4; vi. 42, 52. The That we hear of no such proverb elsewhere, disciples probably have the woman in their is not to the point ;—for such unrecorded thoughts. 34.] Christ alone could sayings are among every people. That we properly say these words. In the believer do not know whence to date the four on Him, they are partially true,-true months, is again no objection:-there may as far as he has received the Spirit, and have been, in the part where the saying was entered into the spiritual life ;--but in usual (possibly in the land west of the lake Him they were absolutely and fully true. of Tiberias, for those addressed were from His whole life was the doing of the thence, and the emphatic "ye" seems to Father's will. We can eat and drink, point to some particular locality), some &c. to the glory of God,'-— but in Him fixed period in the year,—the end of the the hallowing of the Father's name, sowing, or some religious anniversary,doing His will, bringing about His King- when it was a common saying, that it dom, was His daily bread, and super- wanted four months to harvest. And this seded the thoughts and desires for the might have been the first date in the year other, needful as it was for His humanity. which had regard to the harvest, and so
My meat is to be better, that I the best known in connexion with it. may be) doing, &c.] That is, it was our If this be so, all that has been built on Lord's continued sustenance, to be ever this saying, as giving a chronological date, carrying onward to completion that per. must fall to the ground. (Lightfoot, formance of His Father's will for which Wieseler, and others, maintain, that since He came into the world. In the words the harvest began on the 16th of Nisan, finish his work, the way is prepared for we must reckon four months back from the idea introduced in the next verse. that time for this journey through SaThese words give an answer to the ques- maria, which would bring it to the middle tioning in the minds of the disciples, and of Chisleu, i.e. the beginning of December.) shew that He had been employed in the To get the meaning of the latter Father's work during their absence. part of the verse, we must endeavour to 35.] The sense of these much-controverted follow, as far as may be, the train of words will be best ascertained by narrowly thought which pervades the discourse. He observing the form of the sentence. that soweth the good seed is the Son of
1 John iv. 14
36 And he that reapeth receiveth wages, and gathereth fruit unto life eternal: that both he that soweth and he that reapeth may rejoice together. 37 And herein wis that saying true, One soweth, and another reapeth. 38 I sent you to reap that whereon ye x bestowed no labour: other men laboured, and ye are entered into their labours. 39 And many of the Samaritans of that city believed on him y for the saying of the woman, which testified, He y ver. 20. told me all that ever I did. 40 So when the Samaritans were come unto him, they besought him that he would tarry with them: and he abode there two days. 41 And many more believed because of his own word;
42 and said unto the woman, 5 Now we believe, not because of thy saying : for 2
we have heard him ourselves, and know that this is z chomie. indeed [yy the Christ,] the Saviour of the world.
W render, is (fulfilled] that true saying.
yy omit. Man: our Lord had now been employed in standing of the following verses depends. this His work. But not as in the natural
It is of course possible that it may year, so was it to be in the world's lifetime. have been seed-time ;- possible also, that One-third of the year may elapse, or more, the fields may have been actually whitening before the sown seed springs up; but the for the harvest ;—but to lay down either sowing by the Son of Man comes late in of these as certain, and build chronological time, and the harvest should immediately inferences on it, is quite unwarranted. follow. The fields were whitening for it; 36.] The wages of the reaper is in these Samaritans (not that I believe He the “joy” here implied, in having gathered pointed to them approaching, as Chrysos- many into eternal life, just as the meat of tom and most expositors, but had them in the sower was His joy already begun in his view in what He said), and the mul. His heavenly work. See Matt. xx. 1-16 titudes in Galilee, were all nearly ready. and notes. 38.] Here, as often, our In the discourse as far as ver. 38, He is Lords speaks of the office and its work as the sower, the disciples (see Acts viii.) were accomplished, which is but beginning (see the reapers :--He was the one who had Isa. xlvi. 10). By other men here laboured, they were the persons who had our Lord cannot mean the 0. T. prophets entered into his labours. The past is used, as some say, for then His own place would as descriptive of the office which each held, be altogether left out;—and besides, all not of the actual thing done. I cannot Scripture analogy is against the idea of the also but see an allusion to the words spoken 0. T. being the seed of which the N. T. is by Joshua (xxiv. 13), on this very spot ;- the fruit ;
;-nor can it be right, as OlsI have given you a land for which ye
did hausen maintains, to leave Him out, as not labour.' Taking this view, I do being the Lord of the Harvest :- for He not believe there was any allusion to the is certainly elsewhere, and was by the very actual state of the fields at that time. nature of the case here, the Sower. The The words Lift up your eyes, &c., are of plural is I believe merely inserted as the course to be understood literally ;-—they correspondent word to ye in the explawere to lift up their eyes and look on the nation, as it was one soweth and another lands around them; and then came the reapeth in the proverb. 39—42.] assurance; "they are whitening already The truth of the saying of ver. 35 begins towards the harvest.' And it seems to me to be manifested. These Samaritans were that on this view--of the Lord speaking of the foundation of the church afterwards spiritual things to them, and announcing built up there. It does not seem that any to them the approach of the spiritual miracle was wrought there: the feeling harvest,- and none else,—the right under. expressed in the words “ we have heard
Mark vi. 4.
bch. 11. 23:
43 Now after z two days he departed thence, and went a Matt. xiil. 57. into Galilee. 44 For a Jesus himself testified, that a proLuke iv. 24. phet hath no honour in his own country. 45 a Then when
he was come into Galilee, the Galilæans received him,
having seen all the things that he did at Jerusalem at the o Deut. xvi. 16. feast : ° for they also went unto the feast. 46 So Jesus d ch. il. 1, 11. came again into Cana of Galilee, d where he made the
water wine. And there was a certain nobleman, whose son was sick at Capernaum. 47 When he heard that Jesus was come out of Judæa into Galilee, he went unto him, and besought him that he would come down, and
heal his son: for he was at the point of death. 48 Then 1 Cor. 1. 22. said Jesus unto him, •Except ye see signs and wonders, % render, the two days.
a render, When then. Him ourselves” was enough to raise their which they themselves held Him, or value faith to a point never attained by the Jews, which they had for His teaching ; but on and hardly as yet by the disciples,—that account of His fame in Jerusalem, the He was the Saviour of the world. Their metropolis,—which set them the fashion in view seems to have been less clouded by their estimate of men and things. prejudice and narrow-mindedness than that for they also went unto the feast is inof the Jews; and though the conversion of serted for those readers who might not be this people lay not in the plan of the aware of the practice of the Galilæans to official life of our Lord, or working of His frequent the feasts at Jerusalem. Apostles during it (see Matt. x. 5),-yet 46. a certain nobleman) literally, "a royal we have abundant proof from this history, person.” “ Either,” say Euthyinius and of His gracious purposes towards them. Chrysostom, “one of the royal race, or one A trace of this occurrence may be found in possession of some dignity from which ch. viii. 48, where see note. Compare he was called 'royal ;'” or, Euthymius throughout Acts viii. 1-25. The word adds, “ because he was a servant of the rendered story (literally, " this talking') King." Origen thinks he may have been is one in which it is hardly possible not to one of the household of Cæsar, having some see something of allusion to the woman's business in Judæa at that time. But the eager and diffuse report to them.
usage of Josephus is perhaps our surest 43—54.] The second miracle of Jesus guide. He uses this word "royal,” to in Galilee. The healing of the Ruler's distinguish the soldiers, or courtiers, or
43.] after the two days, viz. officers of the kings (Herods or others), those mentioned above. We find no from those of Rome,- but never to desigmention of the disciples again, till ch. vi. 3. nate the royal family. So that this man
And thus the “therefore" in the was probably an officer of Herod Antipas. next verse will be a word connecting it He may have been Chuza, Herod's steward, with this preliminary reason given. Luke viii. 3: but this is pure conjecture. The reason (ver. 1) why Jesus left Judæa The man seems to have been a Jew : for Galilee was, because of the publicity
47, 48.] This miracle which was gathering round Himself and is a notable instance of our Lord not his ministry. He betakes himself to Gali- quenching the smoking fax:' just as His lee therefore, to avoid fame, testifying that reproof of the Samaritan woman was of His own country (Galilee) was that where, His not breaking the bruised reed.' The as a prophet, He was least likely to be little spark of faith in the breast of this honoured. See on the difficulties which nobleman is by Him lit up into a clear have been found in the connexion of this and enduring flame for the light and comverse, in my Greek Testament. The above fort of himself and his house. explanation seems to me completely satis. down: see on ch. ii. 12. The charge factory. 45.) They received Him, but brought against them, Except ye see signs in accordance with the proverbial saying and wonders, &c., does not imply, as some just recorded ;-not for any honour in think, that they would not believe signs
ye will not believe. 49 The nobleman saith unto him, Sir, come down ere my child die. 50 Jesus saith unto him, Go thy way; thy son liveth. And the man believed the word that Jesus b had spoken unto him, and he went
51 And as he was now going down, his servants met him, and told him, saying, Thy C son liveth. 52 Then enquired he of them the hour when he began to amend. And they said unto him, Yesterday at the seventh hour the fever left him. 53 So the father knew that it was at the same hour, in the which Jesus said unto him, Thy son liveth: and himself believed, and his whole house. 5+ d This is again the second miracle that Jesus did, when he was come out of Judæa into Galilee. b render, spake.
C render, child. d
render, This again, a second miracle, did Jesus. and wonders heard of, but required to see they indicated. We may observe the them-for in this case the expression would difference between our Lord's dealing here certainly have been fuller, “ see with your and in the case of the centurion (Matt. eyes,” or something similar;-and it would viii. 6 ff. and parallel places). There, not accord with our Lord's known low es- when from humility the man requests Him timate of all mere miracle-faith, to find to speak the word only, He offers to go to Him making so weighty a difference be- his house: here, when pressed to go down, tween faith from miracles seen and faith He speaks the word only. Thus (as Trench from miracles heard. The words imply the observes, after Chrysostom) the weak faith contrast between the Samaritans, who be. of the nobleman is strengthened, while the lieved because of His word, and the Jews humility of the centurion is honoured. (the plural reckoning the nobleman among 51.] He appears (see below) to have gone them), who would not believe but through leisurely away-for the hour (1 P.m.) was signs and prodigies :- see 1 Cor. i. 22. And early enough to reach Capernaum the same observe also that it is not implied that even evening (twenty-five miles)-in confidence when they had seen signs and wonders, they that an amendment was taking place, which would believe :-they required these as a he at present understood to be only a gracondition of their faith, but even these
52, 53. the fever left him] were rejected by them : see ch. xii. 37. This was probably more than he expected But even with such inadequate conceptions to hear ; and the coincidence of so sudden and conditions of faith, our Lord receives a recovery with the time at which Jesus the nobleman, and works the sign rather had spoken the words to him raises his than dismiss him. It was otherwise in faith at length into a full belief of the Matt. xvi. 1 ff. 49.] Here is the same Power and Goodness and the Messiahship of weakness of faith as there,—but our Lord's Him, who had by a word commanded the last words have made visible impression. disease, and it had obeyed. The word beIt is like the Syrophænician woman's re- lieved, absolutely, implies that in the joinder, — Yea, Lord; but ...,' only the fullest sense he and all his became disciples faith is of a far less noble kind than hers. of Jesus. It is very different from “be. He seems to believe it necessary that Jesus lieved the word that Jesus spake” in ver. should be on the spot;- not that there 50—as believing on Him must be always was any thing strange or blameable in this, different from believing on any thing else for Martha and Mary did the same, ch. xi. in the world, be it even His own word or 21, 32:—and to think that it would be His own ordinances. The cure took place too late when his child had expired ;-not in the afternoon: the nobleman probably imagining that He to whom he spoke could set out, as indeed the narrative implies, raise the dead. 50.] The bringing immediately on hearing our Lord's assu. out and strengthening of the man's faith rance, and spent the night on the way. by these words was almost as great a spiri. 54.] The meaning of the Evangelist tual miracle, as the material one which clearly is, that this was the second GaliVOL. I.
V. 1 After e this there was a feast of the Jews : and
e render, these things. læan miracle (see ch. iii. 2, and ver. 45). in the commendation there, “ I have not But (1) how is that expressed in the words? seen such faith, no, not in Israel," is not The miracles which He did at Jerusalem only different from, but stands in absolute in the feast being omitted, the words natu. contrast with, the depreciating charge rally carry the thoughts back to a former here, * Except ye see signs and wonone related; and the clause added (“when ders, ye will not believe.” Olshausen He was come out of Judæa into Galilee") well remarks, that this narrative may be shews, not that a miracle prior to this regarded as a sequel to the foregoing during this return visit, has been passed over, but that as the scene of this second CHAPP. V.—XII.] Second great division was in Galilee, so that former one, to which of the Gospel. JESUS IN CONFLICT WITH “second” refers, must be sought in Gali- THE Jews. V., VI. JESUS THE LIFE. lee also. And then (2) why should this so Beginning of the conflict. particularly be stated ? Certainly, it seems V. 1-47.] Healing of a cripple at the to me, on account of the part which this pool of Bethesda, during a feast ; and the miracle bore in the calling out and as- discourse of Jesus occasioned by the persesuring of faith by the manifestation of cution of the Jews arising thereupon. His glory, as that first one had done be. 1. After these things] Lücke reinarks that fore. By that (ch. ii. 11), His disciples when John wishes to indicate immediate had been convinced : by this, one (him- succession, he uses after this” (or self a type of the weak and unworthy in “that”), ch. ii. 12; xi. 7, 11; xix. 28; faith) outside the circle of His own. By when mediate, after an interval, “after both, half-belief was strengthened into these things," ch. iii. 22 ; v. 14; vi. l; vii. faith in Him : but in each case it is of a 1; xix. 38. So that apart from other condifferent kind. It is an interesting siderations which would lead us to the question, whether or not this miracle be same conclusion, we may infer that some the same as the healing of the centurion's interval has elapsed since the last verse of servant (or son, Matthew ?) in Matt. viii. ch. iv. a feast of the Jews] Few 5: Luke vii. 1. Irenæus appears to hold points have been more controverted, than the two narratives to be the same history the question, what this feast was. I will (appears only; for his words are, “He give the principal views, and then state healed the centurion's servant when ab- my own conclusion. (1) Irenæus undersent, saying, 'Go thy way, thy son liveth :'” stands it to be the second Passover of our which remark may be simply explained by Lord's ministry. Origen (whose commenhis having cited from memory, and thus tary on this chapter is lost) mentions this either made this nobleman a centurion,- view, but apparently does not approve it. or, which is more probable, having under- This is the view of Luther, Grotius, Lightstood the word in Matt. viii. to signify a foot, and others. (2) Cyril of Alexandria, son, and made our Lord there speak very Chrysostom, and others think it to be the similar words to those really uttered by Pentecost. This opinion prevailed in the Him, but which are in reality found here): Greek Church; and has found many deso Eusebius also in his canons. Chrysostom fenders in modern times. (3) Kepler first notices, but opposes the view :-and it has suggested the idea that it might be the never in modern times gained many advo- feast of Purim, (Esth. ix. 21, 26,) almost cates, being chiefly held by the interpreters immediately preceding the Passover (the of the Straussian school. Indeed, the in- 14th and 15th of Adar). This has been ternal evidence is all against it: not only the general view of the modern chronolo(Chrys.) “in station, but also in the nature gists. (4) The feast of Tabernacles has of his faith," does the man in one case dif. been suggested by Cocceius, and is supfer from the man in the other. The inner ported by one of our MSS., but of late date. kernel of the history is, in our case here,– (5) Kepler and Petavius thought it also the elevation of a weak and mere wonder possible that the feast of Dedication (see ch. seeking faith into a deep conviction of the x. 22) might be meant. So that almost personal power and love of our Lord; in every Jewish feast finds some supporters. the other, the commendation of a noble I belie with Lücke, De Wette, and confession of our Lord's divine power, in- Tholuck, that we cannot with any probadicating great strength and grasp of faith, bility gather what feast it was. Seeing and inducing the greatest personal humi- as I do no distinct datum given in ch. iv. lity. And the external point brought out 35, nor again in ch. vi. 1, and finding no