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Julian Pe 29 Come, see a man, which told me all things that ever Samaria. riod, 4740. I did : is not this the Christ? Vulgar Æra, 27.
30 Then they went out of the city, and came 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 saith the disciples one to another, Hath any man brought him ought to eat ?
34 Jesus saith unto them, My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.
35 Say ye not, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvesto? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest.
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 is that saying true, One soweth, and another reapeth.
38 I sent you to reap that whereon ye 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 for the saying of the woman, which testified, He 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.
9 This passage has much divided the commentators. It is one of those texts upon which much depends with respect to the chronology of the life of Christ. Some suppose that the words imply, that in four months time would be the barvest, which took place at the Passover. On wbich supposition many harmonists have added another Passover to our Lord's ministry. Lightfoot (vol. i. p. 603.) is of this opinion. Whitby supposes the phrase to be proverbial. We cannot certainly conclude, from these words, whether our Lord alluded to the appearance of the people who might be then in numbers approaching him, or to the actual time of the year. The extreme weariness of our Saviour seems to favour more the supposition that the conversation with the woman of Samaria was held after the Passover, immediately before the corn was reaped, during the summer season, rather than in the depth of winter. Nor is it likely that the desolation of the scenery in winter would have recalled, by natural association, the beautics and the riches of the fields, when ripe and ready for the harvest. Our Lord, as Bishop Law has proved, in his tract of the Life of Christ, and as Archbishop Newcome, Jortin, and many others have shewn, drew his comparisons and illustrations very frequently and generally from surrounding objects.-Vide Benson's Chronology, &c. p. 247-9. Archbishop Newcome on our Lord's Conduct. Jortin's Six Discourses. Law's Life of Christ, &c.
Julian Pe 41 And many more believed because of his own word ; Samaria.
and know that this is indeed the Christ, the Saviour of the
Second Miracle at Cana, in Galilee "0.
JOHN iv. 43. to the end. 43 Now after two days he departed thence, and went Cana, in into Galilee.
Galilee. 44 For Jesus himself testified that a prophet hath no honour in his own country.
45 Then, when he was come into Galilee, the Galileans received him, having seen all the things that he did at Jerusalem at the feast : for they also went unto the feast.
46 So Jesus came again into Cana of Galilee, where he made the water wine". And there was a certain nobleman, whose son was sick at Capernaum.
10 Michaelis does not appear to have given so much attention to his Harmony of the New Testament, as we might have required from one whose authority is so great. He observes, on the contents of this section, "In point of Chronology this does not belong to the present place, not even according to St. Luke: but I place it here, because St. Luke has introduced it immediately after the preceding history. Perhaps it belongs to No. 50, though I have not placed it there, because it does not exactly agree with the accounts quoted in that article from St. Matthew and St. Mark.” That is, it is quite uncertain, in the opinion of Michaelis. I have followed the authority of Doddridge, Pilkington, Newcome, and Lightfoot, in placing it here : and, independantly of these authorities, the internal evidence is peculiarly decisive. Christ began his public ministry in his own country, and, after having traversed Judea and Samaria, has arrived at the town where he was brought up, there to commence his teaching.
Michaelis, however, it must be in justice observed, expressly declares, that his harmony of the four Gospels must not be considered as a chronological table: though Bishop Marsh is of opinion, from examining Michaelis's Arrangement, sect. 2942, that he intended to arrange the facts in chronological order as far as he was able.-See Marsh's Notes to Michaelis, vol. iii.
11 The healing of the nobleman's son at Capernaum is placed after the conversation with the woman of Samaria, by all the harmonizers. After staying two days at Samaria, he departed into Galilee, (John iv. 43.) Archbishop Newcome inserts those passages which I have placed as a preface to this chapter, after the account of the interview with the Samaritan woman. He is correct in this arrangement, as to the precise time in which the events occurred. I have, however, thought it advisable to place them before that event, as a preface to the general bistory of his ministry, which began after the imprisonment of the
Julian Pe. 47 When he heard that Jesus was come out of Judea Cans, in riod, 4740. into Galilee, he went unto him, and besought him that he
Galilee. Vulgar Æra, 27.
Baptist. It must, bowever, excite some surprize that Arch-
On consulting the map of Galilee, it will be seen that our Lord's
Archbishop Newcome supposes the distance between Sichem, the capital of Samaria, and Cana, in Galilee, to be forty miles; between Cana and Nazareth, ten; between Nazareth and Capernaum, twenty-three; between Capernaum and Jerusalem, sixty-five.
It is a very probable supposition of Lightfoot, that the word rendered in our translation “a certain nobleman” (ris BaoilKÒS,) but which ought rather to be translated with the Syriac,
one of the king's servants,” denoted one of those who took part with Herod the Great, and who was now a follower of his son, Herod the Tetrarch. Lightfoot supposes that the preaching of John the Baptist had produced some effect at the court of Herod, and that many of the courtiers were consequently acquainted with the mission of our Lord; and that the nobleman who now sent to Christ, that his son might be healed, was Manaan, (Acts xiii. 1) who had been brought up with Herod; or Chuza, (Luke viii. 3.) Herod's steward, both of whom were among the earliest converts.
This miracle was greater than the first wbich had taken place at Cana, and demonstrated a higher degree of power. Our Lord by it shewed that he possessed a power superior to that which had been claimed or exercised by any merely human prophet, or teacher sent from God. It is true that the degree of supernatural agency seems to be equal in one miracle to that of ano
Vulgar Æra, point of death.
Julian Pe. would come down, and heal his son: for he was at the Cana, in riod, 4740.
48 Then said Jesus unto him, Except ye see signs and wonders, 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 had spoken unto him, and he went his way.
51 And as he was now going down, his servants met him, and told him, saying, Thy son liveth.
52 Then inquired he of them the hour when he began to amend. And they said unto him, Yesterday at the seventh hour the fever left him.
58 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.
54 This is again the second miracle that Jesus did, when he was come out of Judea into Galilee.
zareth, and his danger there'.
LUKE iv. 16-30. 16 And he came to Nazareth, where he had been Nazareth. brought up; and, as his custom was '3, he went into
ther; but in this instance the divine attribute of ubiquity was
12 This visit to Nazareth was certainly different from that men-
13 Lightfoot supposes the words, “ as his custom was,” refers to the usual attendance of our Lord on the public service, when our Lord lived at Nazareth as a private individual. He now enters the synagogue as an acknowledged Propbet, and, as a member of it, joins in the services, and reads publicly there, which only members were allowed to do. Hence we find that this is the only place on record where our Saviour read publicly, although he preached in every synagogue where he came. It is not to be supposed that the public worship at that time was less corrupt than ours of the present period—nor that the conduct of the Jewish teachers was irreproachable; we have, indeed, a lamentable instance to the contrary, v. 29. yet we find that our blessed Saviour did not separate himself, as too many have since done, and continue to do, on this account from the appointed public worship, although there was much lo be condemned in it.
Julian Pe- the synagogue on the sabbath-day, and stood up to Nazareth. riod, 4740. read". Vulgar
17 And there was delivered unto him the book of the prophet Esaias. And when he had opened the book, he found the place where it was written",
Our Lord's example also sanctions to us the use in all Churches of forms of prayer, or Liturgies, the public reading of the Scriptures, the use of vestments, &c. Christ complied with human forms, and joined in liturgical services—are we wrong in following the example of our blessed Redeemer?
14 it may be asked here, by what authority Christ was permitted to teach and preach in the synagogue. The tribe of Levi alone possessed the priesthood, attended the service of the temple, and was appointed to teach the people, as well as to superintend the schools or universities in their forty-eight cities, Josb. xxi. Deut. xxxiii. 10. Malachi ii. 7. Yet it sometimes happened that men of other tribes studied the law, and became preachers, as well as the priests and Levites. They were ordained when qualified by the Sanhedrim to that office. They were ordained to some particular employment in the public administration, and they might not go beyond the power they had received, or intrude upon the ministry of another. The Jews also had a law, that if any man came in the spirit of a prophet, and assumed the office of a teacher on that ground, he was always permitted to preach ; but the Sanhedrim was constituted the judge of his pretensions; and he who was declared by them to be no prophet, and yet continued to preach, did so at his peril. It was probably on this claim, in the manner and office of a prophet, that our Saviour obtained permission to address the people of Nazareth.-Vide Lightfoot, vol. i. p. 614.
15 It was the custom among the Jews to divide the law into fifty-two or fifty-four portions for every Sunday in the year. When this was prohibited by Antiochus, a similar division of the prophets was substituted. The passage from Isaiab, read by our Lord, is the part of the sacred writings appointed to be nsed about the end of August; and Macknight, with other harmonists, have therefore concluded that this circumstance fixes the date of the event recorded (a).
The prophetical books were divided into five parts, to correspond with the five divisions of the law. We
may consider Genesis as corresponding with Isaiah-Exodus with Jeremiab -Leviticus with Ezekiel, &c. &c. the twelve minor prophets were held as one volume, or quintane.
It is of little consequence 'wbother tho portion of Scripture our Saviour fixed upon, was or was not, the proper lesson of the day: for, in reading of the prophets, it was customary for the rhon, or reader, to turn from passage to passage, for the better illustration of his subject; and in the twelve mipor prophets he was permitted to refer from one to another-but, in all probability, (see v. 20 ) Cbrist was standing up as a member of the synagogae, appointed by the minister of the congregation the reader of the prophets, or the second lesson of that day, according to an established custom. On these occasions the minister called the reader out, and delivered to him the book of the prophets ; he himself standing at the desk with an interpreter at his side, to render into Syriac all that was read. is When Christ bad finished he closed the book, and he gave it again to the minister," v. 20. He did all these things according to the established order of the Jewish Church (b).