« AnteriorContinuar »
the present instance; and the woman who anointed his head in the house of Simon is not named, and appears to have been a stranger, whereas here the act is performed by Mary, the well-known sister of Lazarus. Lastly, in the present instance, Judas alone is stated to have objected to the waste and extravagance; whereas in the other case, later in point of time, the objection was also entertained by other disciples, and Judas is not particularly mentioned.
In Luke vii., however, the case is mentioned of a woman who did anoint the feet of Christ at an entertainment. But this appears to be still more manifestly different from the present, as well as from that which Matthew and Mark record;-from the present case it is, indeed, so different, that it appears wonderful that the sinful woman who then anointed the feet of Jesus, should ever have been supposed the same as the respected sister of Lazarus, and that the transactions were the same events differently related. Luke's account refers to an anointing which took place in Galilee, at a considerably earlier point of time than either the present or the other instance; and it took place in the house of Simon the Pharisee, who himself, and not the disciples generally, or Judas in particular, entertained the objection which our Saviour answered-the objection and answer being entirely different from those which occurred on the other occasions, applying not to the extravagance of the waste, but to the sinful character of the woman. We do ourselves, therefore, feel unable to resist the conclusion that our Lord received three anointings in the course of his ministry, by different persons, at different times, in different houses, and two of them in different towns. The first, in point of time, would be that recorded by St. Luke, which took place in Galilee, in the house of Simon the Pharisee, who himself made a mental objection, founded on the circumstance, that the woman was a sinner. The second, at Bethany, in the house of Lazarus, whose sister Mary gave this proof of her reverence for Christ, who had raised her brother from the dead; on which occasion Judas objected to the extravagant waste of the precious ointment. The third, four days after, in the same place, at the house of Simon the leper, when the head of Christ was anointed by a woman not named, and when some of the disciples, moved by so speedy a repetition of so costly an offering, entertained sincerely the objection which on the previous occasion had been urged by Judas only, and by him insincerely, with a view to his own advantage.
6. "Had the bag, and bare what was put therein."-"The word yaworónomov originally signified a wooden box in which pipers deposited the mouthpieces of their instruments. It thence came to denote any small portable box or casket, for holding money and other valuables, like the Latin marsupium. And this is the sense it has here, and in 2 Chron. xxiv. 8, 10, 11."-Bloomfield. It would appear that Judas was entrusted with the money contributed by those followers of Jesus who "ministered to him of their substance," not only, as it would seem, for his own use and that of his disciples, but for distribution to the poor. For we see that Judas, in expressing an opinion that the value of the ointment ought to have been given to the poor, expected to have had charge of it, if so appropriated. So also, when this same Judas eft the party at the last supper to betray his Lord, some of the disciples supposed he was gone to give something to the poor. The Evangelist clearly intimates that Judas was unfaithful to his trust; and that the real cause of his anxiety to obtain an addition to the fund confided to him was, "not that he cared for the poor," but that he might have larger scope for those peculations which had become habitual to him. Covetousness, or the love of money, is the principle in the character of Judas, which is here brought to our notice; and this we presently find more awfully
exemplified in that betrayal of his master for paltry gain, which has rendered his name a standing by-word in all the regions of the earth.
21. "Bethsaida of Galilee."-This town was the native place not only of Philip but of Andrew and Peter; and was one of the towns, bordering on the Lake of Tiberias, against which our Lord pronounced that woe, because of their unbelief, which has long since befallen them all. It is generally supposed that this Bethsaida was situated on the northeast of the lake, near the junction of the Jordan; and is concluded to be the same place which the tetrarch Philip raised from a poor village into an important city, to which he gave the name of Julias. Of this city no trace now remains, although it is supposed that its site may still be indicated. Two objections have however been urged against this conclusion: one is, that this Bethsaida, otherwise Julias, was not in Galilee, where Philip had no territory, but on the north-eastern shore of the lake, in Gaulonitis; and that, therefore, the Bethsaida of the Gospels must have been elsewhere: the other reason is found in the circumstance of the change of name from Bethsaida to Julias, which took place before our Lord commenced his public teaching. There does not seem much weight in the last objection, since places often continue for some time to retain their old names, after new ones have been imposed. The other seems of more importance; and, in deference to it. it may be observed that, according to Pococke, there are ruins of a large village or town, in Galilee, about two miles to the west of the lake, and five miles N.N.W. from the town of Tiberias; and which may possibly have been the Bethsaida of Galilee to which our text refers; unless there be weight in the objection which occurs to us, that the Bethsaida of the New Testament appears to have been a fishing-town, for which the Bethsaida now indicated, may possibly be thought too distant from the lake. We need not remind the reader that the profound obscurity in which are involved all the ancient towns of this lake, whose downfall was foretold by our Saviour, is in itself one of the most interesting circumstances which could be adduced in reference to them.
1 Jesus washeth the disciples' feet: exhorteth them to humility and charity. 18 He foretelleth, and discovereth to John by a token, that Judas should betray him: 31 commandeth them to love one another, 36 and forewarneth Peter of his denial. Now 'before the feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that his hour was come that he should depart out of this world unto the Father, having loved his own which were in the world, he loved them unto the end.
2 And supper being ended, the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, to betray him;
3 Jesus knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he was come from God, and went to God;
4 He riseth from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself.
5 After that he poureth water into a bason, and began to wash the disciples' feet, and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded.
6 Then cometh he to Simon Peter: and Peter said unto him, Lord, dost thou wash my feet?
7 Jesus answered and said unto him, What I do thou knowest not now; but thou shalt know hereafter.
8 Peter saith unto him, Thou shalt never wash my feet. Jesus answered him, If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me.
9 Simon Peter saith unto him, Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head.
10 Jesus saith to him, He that is washed needeth not save to wash his feet, but is
& Matt. 10. 24. Chap. 15. 20.
1 Matt. 26. 2.
clean every whit: and ye are clean, but not all.
11 For he knew who should betray him; therefore said he, Ye are not all clean.
12 So after he had washed their feet, and had taken his garments, and was set down again, he said unto them, Know ye what I have done to you?
13 Ye call me Master and Lord and ye say well; for so I am.
14 If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another's feet.
15 For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you.
16 Verily, verily, I say unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord; neither he that is sent greater than he that sent him.
17 If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them.
I speak not of you all: I know whom I have chosen but that the Scripture may be fulfilled, 'He that eateth bread with me hath lifted up his heel against me.
19 'Now I tell you before it come, that, when it is come to pass, ye may believe that I am he.
20 'Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that receiveth whomsoever I send receiveth me; and he that receiveth me receiveth him that sent me.
21 When Jesus had thus said, he was troubled in spirit, and testified, and said, Verily, verily, I say unto you, that one of you shall betray me.
22 Then the disciples looked one on another, doubting of whom he spake.
8 Psal. 41. 9. 4 Or, From henceforth. 3 Matt. 10.40. Matt. 26. 21.
23 Now there was leaning on Jesus' bosom one of his disciples, whom Jesus loved.
24 Simon Peter therefore beckoned to him, that he should ask who it should be of whom he spake
25 He then lying on Jesus' breast saith unto him, Lord, who is it?
26 Jesus answered, He it is, to whom I shall give a 'sop, when I have dipped it. And when he had dipped the sop, he gave it to Judas Iscariot, the son of Simon.
Jesus said, Now is the Son of man glorified, and God is glorified in him.
32 If God be glorified in him, God shall also glorify him in himself, and shall straightway glorify him.
33 Little children, yet a little while I am with you. Ye shall seek me: 'and as I said unto the Jews, Whither I go, ye cannot come; so now I say to you.
34 A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.
35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another. 36 Simon Peter said unto him, Lord, whither goest thou? Jesus answered him, Whither I go, thou canst not follow me now; but thou shalt follow me afterwards.
27 And after the sop Satan entered into him. Then said Jesus unto him, That thou doest, do quickly.
28 Now no man at the table knew for what intent he spake this unto him.
29 For some of them thought, because Judas had the bag, that Jesus had said unto him, Buy those things that we have need of against the feast; or, that he should give something to the poor.
37 Peter said unto him, Lord, why cannot I follow thee now? I will lay down my life for thy sake.
30 He then having received the sop went immediately out: and it was night.
38 Jesus answered him, Wilt thou lay down thy life for my sake? Verily, verily, I say unto thee, The cock shall not crow, till 31 Therefore, when he was gone out, thou hast denied me thrice. Levit 19. 18. Chap. 15. 17. Ephes. 5 2. 1 John 4. 21. 10 Matt. 26. 33.
7 Or, mursel. 8 Chap. 7. 34.
Verse 4. “He riseth from supper,” &c.—In the account of the celebration of the Passover, which we gave in a note on Luke xxii., we mentioned three washings connected with it: the first before the antepast, after the first grace had been said, and the first cup of wine had been drunk; the second, after the antepast was concluded, and before the proper feast began by the breaking of the unleavened bread; and the third, after the paschal feast was finished. It would appear that the rising from supper, in the present instance, would indicate the second of these washings, as when this took place the whole feast was on the table, and the antepast had already been taken. There seems also something more striking in this second washing, which was performed when the preliminaries had passed, and the breaking of the unleavened bread and the eating of the paschal lamb were immediately to follow.
"Laid aside his garments."-This may be explained by the analogy of custom; and the custom of the East is for a servant who performs this or any other similar office to lay aside all his garments, if more than one, which are above his tunic, or body coat: that is to say, he lays aside all his looser robes which might impede his ease or freedom, or incommode the person he serves. As the articles of dress among the Jews do not appear to have been numerous, it is more than probable that Jesus only laid aside his outer flowing robe. which might be, and indeed often was, designated plurally (ipárai) “ garments,” in the way of dignity, because this external article of dress was remarkably wide and flowing.
"Took a towel, and girded himself.”—That is, girded himself with the towel. This is not an existing custom of the East; but we know from the classical writers that the servant whose duty it was to attend to the washings of his master or his master's guests, girded himself with a long piece of linen cloth, the end, or both ends, of which being left hanging loose, supplied the towel with which the hands were wiped after being washed. Indeed, the towel around the waist, was a proper and essential part of the equipment of the servant who discharged this office.
5. "Poureth water into a bason.”—This was for washing the feet; for the hands were washed by water being poured upon them. The traditionary regulations of the time determined that the bason for washing the feet should hold from two logs (or about four pints) to nine cabs (about four pints and a half); as they held that a less quantity of water was not consistent with cleanliness. We see much reason to conclude that the Jews never did introduce the feet. or any other members, into the vessel containing the water. The operation upon the feet appears to have been performed as the persons reclined at table, without its being needful for them to make any change in their posture. The servant came and gently raising the foot, inserted under it the bason of water: he then laved the foot and rubbed it with his right hand, while he held it with his left; finally wiping it with the towel with which he was girded.
"Began to wash the disciples' feet."-Having just explained the process, it only remains to observe, that the washing of feet was no part of the Passover observances, in which the hands only were washed. Our Lord, therefore, inculcated humility upon his apostles, by a spontaneous example, offered in his own discharge of an office not usually performed at all on such occasions, and which was so servile or reverential in its very nature, that it was never performed by superiors to their inferiors, and rarely by equals to each other. The Rabbinical writers let us know by whom this service was usually performed, namely, by the servant for his master, by the wife for her husband, by the son for his father, and by the disciple for his master. The last indeed is not said expressly, but is implied in the general rule, that All works which a servant does to his master, a disciple does to his master, except that of unloosing his shoes." (T. Bab. Cetubot. fol. 91. 1.)
23. “There was leaning on Jesus' bosom one of his disciples.”—It appears that at this period the Jews had adopted the same custom of reclining, instead of sitting, at their entertainments, which then also prevailed among the Romans. We do not, however, think that they had adopted the custom from the Romans, but rather consider that they had, at
a much earlier time, learned it from the Persians, to whom we can trace its earliest recorded existence. Under this plan, the guests reclined upon cushions or sofas, which enclosed the table on three sides, the fourth side being left open for the access of the servants. In different times and places, the tables and couches differed in size, height, and arrangement; but from the word used to express the beds (rgixλvos-triclinium), it is evident that the arrangement was that of couches, enclosing, on three sides, a square or oblong table; not the stibadium, or continuous couch in the form of a half-moon, enclosing a round table. The Talmudists fully apprize us that such couches were in use among the Jews; but they do not enter into details, some information concerning which we may however derive from the analogous practices of the Romans. The couches varied in size. Each of the couches was most generally large enough for three persons, but sometimes only for two, or even one. Among the Romans high couches and tables were affected; but perhaps this was not the taste of the Jews, as the Orientals generally like to sit or recline low at table. On the frame of the couches were laid mattresses. stuffed with feathers. herbs, or tow, over which were laid coverings, at first of skins, for which rich coverlets or carpets were ultimately substituted. Of the three couches, the middle one, or that which crossed at the top of the table, was the most distinguished, and. on this, the middle place was the seat of honour. The persons who reclined at table on these couches lay with the upper part of the body leaning on their left elbows, their faces being of course turned towards the table. The head was a little raised, the back being supported by cushions; but the lower part of the body was extended at full length, inclining outward behind at the back of the person who sat next below him; which person, consequently, was so placed. with the table before him and the inferior part of the first person's body behind him, that his head approached the breast of the one above him, as also did the head of the person below himself approach his own breast. If therefore the place of honour was the middle of the cross couch. as it was among the Romans, it is evident that while John lay below Christ, with his head towards his bosom, Christ himself must have lain with his head towards the bosom of some one reclining above him. It then becomes a question, who this was? We should suppose it the most favoured disciple, next to John. In the sacred narrative, the most favoured disciples appear to have been John, his brother James, and Peter. We think that Judas also must be considered a favoured disciple, since he was the treasurer and almoner of the party. Lightfoot thinks there can be no doubt that the disciple who reclined above Christ was Peter. He says, "While Christ and his disciples were eating together, Peter lay at the back of Christ, and John lay in his bosom: John in the bosom of Christ, and Christ in the bosom of Peter. Christ therefore could not readily talk with Peter in his ear (for all this discourse was by way of whispering); Peter, therefore, looking over Christ's head towards John, nods to him, and, by that, signs to him to ask Christ about this matter." For his conclusion, that Peter reclined above Jesus, it is seen that he relies on the circumstance of Peter's beckoning to John; but we cannot see how this is proved: as it seems only to show that John could more readily than Peter communicate with Christ; and a little attention will easily show that, if Peter occupied this place, John was, relatively, in the worst situation possible for observing the sign which Peter made. We would therefore venture to suggest that, wherever Peter might be, it was no other than Judas, who reclined next above Christ. Our reason for this conclusion is founded on the circumstance that Jesus gave the sop to Judas when he had dipped it. From the manner in which the persons were disposed on the couches, we think it must be evident to the reader that an individual seated as described, could only give a sop to two persons-to the one above and the one below him. But the one below him was St. John, to whom no sop was given: if, therefore, we conclude that it was given to the person next above, this must have been Judas, to whom the sop was actually given. This conjecture may possibly supply a new emphasis to some of the circumstances related.
It is singular that the Jews, who were enjoined in the Law to eat the Passover like travellers and men in haste, had
so departed from their original practice as to eat it in the most luxurious and composed of all postures. We learn that the custom of sitting upright at meals, was not by any means extinct in the country; but it is the fact, that even this less indulgent posture, as well as that of standing with girded loins and sandalled feet, were not only disused, but absolutely forbidden at the Passover. At their ordinary meals, a large proportion of the people continued to sit upright; but at the Passover it was made imperative on all that they should recline on couches, in the manner we have described. The reason for this was, that their posture should indicate the condition of ease and freedom, into which they passed after they had been delivered from Egyptian bondage. They held that, in every generation, a man was obliged to behave at the Passover as if he had himself been delivered from thraldom; and, therefore, that at that feast a man was, above all things, bound to eat, drink, and sit in a posture of freedom. Hence they were at this time even studious to devise, as they lay on their couches. new forms of ease, and to obviate the least show of standing to attend, or of readiness to proceed on any business, desiring in every way to indicate the condition of perfect freedom to which they had arrived.
1 Christ comforteth his disciples with the hope of heaven: 6 professeth himself the way, the truth, and the life, and one with the Father: 13 assureth their prayers in his name to be effectual: 15 requesteth love and obedience, 16 promiseth the Holy Ghost Comforter, 27 and leaveth his peace with them.
LET not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.
2 In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
3 And if I go and prepare a place for I will come again, and receive myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. 4 And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.
5 Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way?
6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
7 If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.
8 Philip saith unto him, Lord, shew us the Father, and it sufficeth us.
9 Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?
10 Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works.
11 Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works' sake.
12 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father. 13 And whatsoever ye shall ask in my
16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;
17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it sceth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.
18 I will not leave you 'comfortless: I will come to you.
19 Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also.
20 At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you.
21 He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.
22 Judas saith unto him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world?
23 Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.
24 He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father's which sent me.
25 These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you
26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.
27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
2 Or, orphans.