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Jesus is questioned concerning

CHAP. XVIII.

his doctrine and disciples.

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unto Peter, Art not thou also one of|resort; and in secret have I said noAn. Olymp. this man's disciples ? He saith, I am thing. not.

21 Why askest thou me? ask them 18 And the servants and officers stood there, which heard me, what I have said unto them: who had made a fire of coals; for it was cold : behold, they know what I said. and they warmed themselves : and Peter stood 22 And when he had thus spoken, one of the with them, and warmed himself.

officers which stood by struck Jesus with the 19 The high-priest then asked Jesus of his palm of his hand, saying, Answerest thou the disciples, and of his doctrine.

high-priest so? 20 Jesus answered him, I spake openly to 23 Jesus answered him, If I have spoken evil, the world ; I ever taught in the synagogue, bear witness of the evil: but if well, why smitest and in the temple, whither the Jews always thou me?

• Matt. 26. 55. Lake 4. 13. ch. 7. 14, 26, 28. & 8. 2. .

Jer. 20. 2. Acts 23. 2.

-- Or, with a rod.

tily, says he, on a subject concerning which the Scripture is that day : but if he be condemned, the sentence cannot be silent.

pronounced till the next day. But no kind of judgment is to Verse 17. The dumisel thut kept the door] Cæzarius, a writer be executed, neither on the eve of the sabbath, nor the eve quoted by Calmet, says, this portress was named Ballila. It of any festival.” Nevertheless, to the lasting infamy of this is worthy of remark, that women, especially old women, were people, Christ was judicially interrogated and condemned employed by the ancients as porters. In 2 Sam. iv. 6. Loth during the night; and on the night too of the pass-over, or, the Septuagint and Vulgate make a womun, porter to Ishbo- | according to others, on the eve of that feast. Thus, as I have sheth. ARISTOPHANES, in Vespis, v. 765. mentions them in marked before, all the forms of justice were insulted and outthe same office, and calls them Enxos, Sekis, which seems to raged in the case of our Lord. In this his humiliation, his signify a common maid-serrant :

judgment was taken away. See Acts viii. 33. Οτι την θυραν ανεωξεν η Σηκις λαθρα. .

Verse 20. I spake openly to the world) To every person in And Euripides, Troad. brings in Hecuba, complaining that the land indiscriminately—to the people at large :-the tw slie, who was vont 10 sit upon a throne, is now reduced to the mouw here, is tantamount to the French tout le monde, all the misera: :le necessity of becoming a porter, or a nurse, in order that St. John uses the term world, to mean the Jewish people

world, i. e. every person within reach. This is another proof to get a morsel of bread. And Plautus, Curcul. Act. i. sc. I. mentions an old woman who was keeper of the gate :

only; for it is certain our Lord did not preach to the Gen

tiles. The answer of our Lord, mentioned in this and the Anus hic solet cubitare custos janitrir.

following verse, is such as became a person conscious of his Why they, in preference to men, should be pitched upon own innocence, and confident in the righteousness of his for this office, I cannot conceive; but we find the usage was

I have taught in the temple, in the synagogues, in common in all ancient nations. See the notes on Matt. xxvi. | all the principal cities, towns, and villages; and through all 69.

the country. I have had no secret school. You and your Verse 18. Servants and officers] These belonged to the chief emissaries have watched me every where. No doctrine has priests, &c. the Roman soldiers had probably been dismissed ever proceeded from my lips, but what was agreeable to the after having conducted Christ to Annas.

righteousness of the law, and the purity of God. My disVerse 19. Asked Jesus of his disciples, and of his doctrine.] || ciples, when they have taught, have taught in the same way, Hle probably asked him, by what authority, or in virtue of and had the same witnesses. Ask those who have attended what right he collected disciples, formed a different sect, our public ministrations, and hear whether they can prove, preached a new doctrine, and set himself up for a public re- that I or my disciples have preached any false doctrines, have former? As religion was interested in these things, the high- || ever troubled society, or disturbed the State. Attend to the priest was considered as being the proper judge. But all this, ordinary course of justice, call witnesses, let them make their with what follows, was transacted by night, and this was con- depositions, and then proceed to judge according to the evitrary to established laws. For the Talmud states, Sanhed. dence brought before you. c. iv. s. 1. that “criminal processes can neither commence Verse 22. One of the officers-struck Jesus] This was an nor terminate, but during the course of the day. If the per- outrage to all justice : for a prisoner, before he is condemned, son be acquitted, the sentence may be pronounced during II is ever considered to be under the especial protection of jus

cause.

Peter is interrogated, and

ST. JOHN.

denies his Lord thrice.

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(24 Now Annas had sent him bounding his kinsman whose ear Peter cut A.M. 145. An. Olymp. unto Caiaphas the high-priest.) off, saith, Did not I see thee in the An. Oiyawp.

25 | And Simon Peter stood and garden with him ? warmed himself. They said therefore unto 27 Peter then denied again: and immedi. him, Art not thou also one of his disciples ? | ately the cock crew. He denied it, and said, I am not.

28 [ « Then led they Jesus from Caiaphas 26 One of the servants of the high-priest, be- unto ‘the hall of judgment: and it was early:

Matt.

a Matt. 20. 57. Matt. 26. 69,7). Mark 14. 69. Luke 99. 58.

26. 74. Mark 14. 72. Luke 12. 60. ch. 13. 38.

d Matt. 27. 2. Mark 15. 1. Luke 23. 1. Acts 3 19. Or, Pilate's house,

Matt. 27. 27.

tice; nor has any one a right to touch him, but according to Malchus's relations. This occasioned a more vebement denial the direction of the law. But it has been observed before, than before; and immediately the cock crew the second time ; that if justice had been done to Christ, he could neither have which is eminently called adextogoPwvx. The first denial may suffered nor died.

have been between our twelve and one; and the second beVerse 24. Now Annas had sent him, &c.] It has been ob-tween our two and three. served before, that the proper place of this verse is immedi- At the time of the third denial, Luke xxii. 61. proves that ately after the 13th, and if it be allowed to stand here, it Jesus was in the same room with Peter. We must farther should be read in a parenthesis, and considered as a recapitu- observe, that Matthew, chap. xxvi. 57. lays the scene of Pe. lation of what had been before done.

ter's denials in the house of Caiaphas; whereas John, ver. Verse 27. And the cock crew.) Peter denied our Lord | 15—23. seems to intimate, that these transactions took place three times :

in the house of Annas : but this difficulty arises from the inPeter's first denial.

judicious insertion of the particle ou, therefore, in ver. 24. 1. This took place, when he was without, or beneath, in the which should be omitted, on the authority of ADES. Mt. hall of Caiaphas's house. He was not in the higher part where BH. many others; besides some Versions, and some of the Christ stood before the high-priest ; but without that division primitive Fathers. Griesbach has left it out of the text. See of the hall, and in the lower part with the servants and offi- | Bishop Newcome's llarm. Notes, p. 48. cers, at the fire kindled in the midst of the hall, ver. 16, 18. The time of Peter's denials happened during the space of and the girl who kept the door, had entered into the hall where the third Roman watch, or that division of the night between she charged Peter.

twelve and three, which is called «Rextogo® wwe, or cock-crowPeter's second denial.

ing, Mark xiii. 35. Concerning the nature and progress of II. This was in a short time after the first, Luke xxii. 58. Peter's denial, see the notes on Matt. xxvi. 58, 69–75. Having once denied his Master, he naturally retired from the Verse 28. The hall of judgmeni] 'Eus to quitu?soy, to the place where his accuser was, to the vestibule of the hall, prætorium. This was the house where Pilate lodged; hence Matt. xxvi. 71. and it was the time of the first cock-crowing, || called in our margin, Pilate's house. The prætorium is so or soon after midnight. After remaining here a short time, called, from being the dwelling-place of the prætor, or chief perhaps an hour, another girl sees him, and says to them who of the province. It was also the place where he held his court, were standing by in the vestibule, that he was one of them. I and tried causes. Peter, to avoid this charge, withdraws into the hall, and St. John has omitted all that passed in the house of Caiawarms himself. The girl, and those to whom she had spoken, | phas—the accusations brought against Christ—the false witfollow him; the communication between the two places being nesses—the insults which he received in the house of the immediate. Here a man enforces the charge of the girl, ac- H high-priest—and the assembling of the grand council or Sancording to Luke; and others urge it, according to St. John; hedrin. These he found amply detailed by the other three and Peter denies Jesus vehemently.

Evangelists; and for this reason it appears that he omitted Peter's third denial.

them. Jolin's is properly a supplementary Gospel. III. He was now in the hall, and also within sight of Jesus, Lest they should be defiled] The Jews considered even the though at such a distance from him, that Jesus could not know touch of a Gentile as a legal defilement; and therefore would what passed, but in a supernatural way. And about an hour not venture into the prætorium, for fear of contracting some after his second denial, those who stood by, founded a third impurity, which would have obliged them to separate themcharge against him, on his being a Galileun, wbich St. Luke selves from all religious ordinances till the evening, Lev. Iv. says, chap. xxii. 59. one in particular strongly affirmed ; and 10, 11, 19, 20. wbich, according to John, ver. 26. was supported by one of That they might eat the pass-over.) Some maintain that to Pilate questions the Jews concerning

CHAP. XVIII.

their accusation of Christ.

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A. M. 4ngs. * and they themselves went not into" 31 Then said Pilate unto them, Take A.M, 1033. An. Olymp. the judgment hall, lest they should ye him, and judge him according to An. Olynıp,

be defiled; but that they might eat your law. The Jews therefore said the pass-over.

unto him, It is not lawful for us to put any 29 Pilate then went out unto them, and said, man to death: What accusation bring ye against this man? 32 • That the saying of Jesus might be ful

30 They answered and said unto him, If he filled, which he spake, signifying what death were not a malefactor, we would not have de. he should die. livered him up unto thee.

33 Then Pilate entered into the judgment

* Acts 10. 28. & 11. 3.

• Matt. 20. 19. ch. 12. 32, 33. Matt. 27. 11,

πασχα here does not mean the paschal lamb, but the other Verse 31. It is not lawful for us to put any man to death] sacrifices which were offered during the paschal solemnity-They might have judged Jesus according to their law, as for this had been eaten the evening before; and that our Pilate bace them do: but they could only excommunicate, or Lord was crucified the day after the pass-i ver. Others have scourge him. They might have voted him worthy of death; maintained that the paschal lamb is here meant ; that this but they could not put him to death, if any thing of a secular was the proper day for sacrificing it; that it was on the very nature were charged against him. The power of life and bour in which it was offered, that Christ expired on the cross; death was in all probability taken from the Jews when Arand that therefore our Lord did not eat the paschal lamb chelaus, king of Judea, was banished to Vienna, and Judea this year, or that he ate it some hours before the common was made a Roman province; and this happened more than time. Bishop Pearce supposes that it was lawful for the fifty years before the destruction of Jerusalem. But the RoJews to eat the paschal lamb any time between the evening mans suffered Herod, mentioned Acts xii. to exercise the of Thursday, and that of Friday. He conjectures too that power of life and death during his reign. See much on this this permission was necessary, on account of the immense point in Calmet and Pearce. After all, I think it probable, number of lambs which were to be killed for that purpose. that though the power of life and death was taken away When Cestius desired to know the number of the Jews, he from the Jews, as far as it concerned affairs of state; yet it asked the priests how he might accomplish his wish? They i was continued to them in matters which were wholly of an informed him that this might be known by the number of ecclesiastical nature: and that they only applied thus to the lambs slain at the pass-over, as never less than ten partook Pilate to persuade him that they were proceeding against of one lamb, though twenty might feast on it. On this Christ as an enemy of the state, and not as a transgressor of mode of computation he found the lambs to be 256,500; their own peculiar laws and customs. Hence, though they εικοσι πέντε μυριάδας πριθμησαν, προς δε εξακισχιλια και πεντακοσια. assert that he should die according to their law, because he See Josephus, War, b. vi. c. 9. s. 3.

made himself the Son of God, chap. xix. 7. yet they lay That Jesus ate a pass-over this last year of his life, is suf- | peculiar stress on his being an enemy to the Roman governficiently evident from Matt. xxvi. 17—19. Mark xiv. 12–18. ment; and when they found Pilate disposed to let him go, Luke xxii. 8–15. and that he ate this pass-over some hours | they asserted that if he did, he was not Cæsar's friend, ver. before the ordinary time, and was himself slain at that hour 12. It was this that intimidated Pilate, and induced him to in which the paschal lamb was ordered by the law to be sa- give him up, that they might crucify him. How they came crificed, is highly probable, if not absolutely certain. See to lose this power, is accounted for in a different manner by the note on Matt. xxvi. 20. and at the conclusion of the Dr. Lightfoot. His observations are very curious, and are chapter, where the subject, and the different opinions on it, subjoined to the end of this chapter. are largely considered.

Verse 32. That the saying of Jesus might be fulfilled] Or, Verse 29. Pilate then went out] This was an act of con- thus the word was fulfilled. God permitted the Jews to lose descension; but as the Romans had confirmed to the Jews the power of life and death, in the sense before stated, that the free use of all their rites and ceremonies, the governor according to the Roman laws which punished sedition, &c. could do no less than comply with them in this matter. He with the cross, Christ might be crucified, according to his own went out to them, that they might not be obliged to come prediction : chap. xii. 32. and iii. 14. into the hall, and thus run the risk of being defiled.

Verse 33. Art thou the King of the Jews ? ] Verse 30. If he were not a malefactor] So they did not expressly, xxiii. 2. that when the Jews brought him to Pilate, wish to make Pilate the judge; but the executor of the sen- | they began to accuse him as a rebel, who said he was king tence which they had already illegally passed.

of the Jews, and forbad the people to pay tribute to Cæsar.

St. Luke says,

Pilate questions Christ

ST. JOHN.

concerning his kingdom.

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4. M. 40%. ball again, and called Jesus, and said I am a king. To this end was I born, A. M.4055.
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Jews?

world, that I should bear witness unto
34 Jesus, answered him, Sayest

him, Sayest thou this the truth. Every one that is of the truth thing of thyself, or did others tell it thee of heareth my voice. . me ?

· 38 Pilate saith unto him, What is truth ? And 35 Pilate answered, Am I a Jew? Thine own when he had said this, he went out again unto nation and the chief priests have delivered thee the Jews, and saith unto them, “ I find in him unto me: what hast thou done ?

no fault at all. 36 * Jesus answered, "My kingdom is not of 39 · But ye have a custom, that I should this world : if my kingdom were of this world, release unto you one at the pass-over; will ye then would my servants fight, that I should not therefore that I release unto you the King of be delivered to the Jews : but now is my king the Jews? dom not from hence.

40 ' Then cried they all again, saying, Not 37 Pilate therefore said unto him, Art thou a' this man, but Barabbas. & Now Barabbas was a king then? Jesus answered, Thou sayest that robber.

* 1 Tin 6. 13.-- Dan. 9. 44. & 7. 14. Lake 12. 14. ch. 6. 15. & 8. 15.

ch. 8. 47. 1 Johp 3. 19. & 4. 6.

d Matt. 27. 24. Luke 23. 4. ch. 19. 4, 6.

Luke 23. 17.--Acts 3. 14.

e Matt. 27. 15. Mark 15. 6. -8 Luke 23. 19.

It was in consequence of this accusation that Pilate asked the truth alone that I influence the minds, and govern the manners question, mentioned in the text.

of my subjects. Verse 34. Sayest thou this thing of thyself) That is, is it Verse 38. What is truth?] Among the sages of that time because my enemies thus accuse me, or because thou hast any there were many opinions concerning truth ; and some bad suspicion of me, that thou askest this question?

even supposed that it was a thing utterly out of the reach of Verse 35. Am I a Jew?] That is, I am not a Jew, and men. Pilate perhaps might bave asked the question in a cannot judge whether thou art what is called the Christ, the mocking way; and his not staying to get an answer, indicated king of the Jezus. It is thy own countrymen, and their spiritual that be either despaired of getting a satisfactory one, or that he rulers, who delivered thee up to me with the above accusation. was indifferent about it. This is the case with thousands : they

What hast thou done ?] If thou dost not profess thyself king appear desirous of knowing the truth; but bare not patience over this people, and an enemy to Cæsar; what is it that thou to wait in a proper way to receive an answer to their question. hast done, for which they desire thy condemnation?

I find in him no fault] Having asked the above question, Verse 36. My kingdom is not of this world] It is purely and being convinced of our Lord's innocence, he went out to spiritual and divine. If it had been of a secular nature, then the Jews to testify his conviction, and to deliver him, if posmy servants would have contendedthey would have opposed sible, out of their hands. force with force, as the kingdoms of this world do in their Verse 39. But ye have a custom] Nothing relative to the wars; but as my kingdom is not of this world, therefore no origin or reason of this custon is known. Commentators bave resistance has been made. Eusebius relates, Hist. Eccles. lib. / swam in an ocean of conjecture on this point. They have lost iii. c. 20. “ that the relatives of our Lord were brought before their labour, and made nothing out: see the notes on Matt. Domitian, and interrogated whether they were of the family xxvii. 15. Luke xxiii. 17. of David ? and what sort the kingdom of Christ was, and Verse 40. Burabbas was a robber} See Matt. xxvii. 16. where it would appear? they answered that this kingdom The latter Syriac has in the margin aşxansas, a chief robber, was neither of this world, nor of an earthly nature : that it was a captain of banditti, and it is probable that this was the case. altogether heavenly and angelical; and that it would not take He was not only a person who lived by plunder, but shed the place till the end of the world.”

blood of many of those whom he and his gang robbed; and Verse 37. Thou sayest] A common form of expression for, rose up against the Roman government, as we learn from yes, it is so.

I was born into the world that I might set up : Luke xxiii. 19. There never existed a more perfidious, cruel, and inaintain a spiritual government : but this government is and murderous people than these Jews; and no wonder they established in and by truth. All that love truth, hear my preferred a murderer to the prince of peace. Christ himself voice, and attend to the spiritual doctrines I preach. It is by l had said, If ye were of the world, the world would love its

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When and how the Jews lost

CHAP. XVIII.

their power of life and death.

own. Like cleaves to like : hence we need not be surprised to the price of a servant. When, therefore, they did not sit in the find the vilest things still preferred to Christ, his kingdom, and room Gazith, they did not judge about these things, and so those his salvation.

judgments about mulcts or fines ceased. Avodoh Zarah. fol. 82.

Here we have one part of their judiciary power lost; not 1. It is not easy to give the character of Pilate. From taken away from them by the Romans, but falling of itself, as the manner of his conduct, we scarcely can tell when he is it were, out of the hands of the Sanhedrin. Nor did the in jest or in earnest. He appears to have been fully con

Romans indeed take away their power of judging in capital vinced of the innocence of Christ; and that the Jews, through matters, but they by their own oscitancy, supine and unreaenvy and malice, desired his destruction. On this ground he sonable lenity, lost it themselves. For so the Gemara goes on : should have released him; but he was afraid to offend the Rabh Hachman bar Isaac saith, Let him not say that they did Jews. He knew they were an uneasy, factious, and seditious not judge judgments of mulcts, for they did not judge capital people ; and he was afraid to irritale them. Fiat justitiu, judgments either. And whence comes this? When they suw ruat cælum! was no motto of his. For fear of the cla- that so many murders and homicides multiplied upon them, that mours of this bad people, he permitted all the forms and they could not well judge and call them to account, they said, It requisitions of justice to be outraged; and abandoned the is better for us that we remove from place to place; for how can most innocent Jesus to their rage and malice. In this case we otherwise (sitting here and not punishing them) not conhe knew what was truth, but did not follow its dictates; and he tract guilt upon ourselves ? as hastily abandoned the author of it, as he did the question They thought themselves obliged to punish murderers while he bad asked concerning it. Pilate, it is true, was disposed they sat in the room Gazith, for the place itself engaged them to pity---the Jews were full of malice and cruelty. They to it. They are the words of the Gemarists, upon which the both, however, joined in the murder of our Lord. The most gloss. The room Gazills was half of it within, and half of it that we can say for Pilate is, that he was disposed to justice; without the holy place. The reason of which was, that it was but was not inclined to hazard his comfort or safety in doing requisite that the council should sit near the Divine Majesty. it. He was an easy, pliable man, who had no objection to do Hence it is that they say, Whoever constitutes an unfit judge, is a right thing, if it should cost him no trouble ; but he felt no as if he planted a grove by the altar of the Lord, as it is written, disposition to make any sacrifice, even in behalf of innocence, Judges and officers shalt thou make thee; and it follows presently righteousness, and truth. In all the business Pilate shewed after, Thou shalt not plant thee a grore near the altar of the · that he was not a good man: and the Jews proved that they | Lord thy God, Deut. xvi. 18, 21. They removed therefore from were of their father, the devil. See chap. xix. S.

Gurith, and sut in the Taberne: now though the Taberne were 2. As Dr. Lightfoot has entered into a regular examination upon the mountain of the temple, yet they did not sit so near the of when and how the Jews lost the power of life and death in Divine Majesty there, as they did when they sat in the room

Gazith. criminal cases; it may be necessary to lay before the Reader a copious abstract of his researches on this subject, founded on “Let us now in order put the whole matter together. ver. 31. of the preceding chapter.

“ I. The Sanhedrin were most stupidly and unreasonably “ It cannot be denied that all capital judgment or sentence remiss in their punishment of capital offenders ; going upon upon life, had been taken from the Jews for above forty years this reason especially, that they counted it so horrible a thing before the destruction of Jerusalem; as they oftentimes them- | to put an Israelite to death. Forsooth he is of the seed of selves confess. But how came this to pass ? It is commonly | Abraham, of the blood and stock of Israel, and you must have received that the Romans, at this time the Jews' lords and a care how you touch such an one! masters, had taken from all their courts a power and capacity « R. Eliezer bar Simeon had laid hold on some thieves. R. of judging the capital matters. Let us superadd a few things Joshua bar Korchah sent to him, saying, O thou vinegar, the son here. Rabh Cahna saith, when R. Ismael bar Jose lay sick, of good wine! (i. e. O thou wicked son of a good father!) how they sent to him, suying, Pray, Sir, tell us two or three things long wilt thou deliver the people of God to the slaughter! He rhich thou didst once tell us in the name of thy Father. He answered and said, I root the thorns out of the vineyard. To saith to them, An hundred and fourscore years, before the de- | whom the other: Let the Lord of the vineyard come and foot struction of the temple, the wicked kingdom (the Roman Em- them out himself. Bava Meziak, fol. 83. 2. It is worth noting, pire) reigned over Israel, fourscore years before the destruction that the very thieves of Israel are the people of God; and they of the temple, they (the fathers of the Sanhedrin) determined must not be touched by any man, but referred to the judaabout the uncleunness of the heathen land, and about glass vessels. inent of God himself! Forty years before the destruction of the temple, the Sanhedrin When R. Ismael bar R. Jose was constituted a magistrate remored and sat in the Taberne. What is the meaning of this by the king, there happened some such thing to him; for Elias tradition? Rabbi Isuac bar Abdimi saith, they did not judge himself rebuked him, saying, How long wilt thou deliver over judgments of mulcts. The gloss is, Those are the judgments the people of God to slaughter! Ibid. fol. 64. 1. Hence that about fining cry that offered violence, that entice a maid, and which we alledged elsewhere : The Sanhedrin that happens to

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