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of Jesus,

SECTION II.
Death of John the Baptist. Herod desires to see Christ®.
MATT. xiv, 1--12. MARK vi. 14-29.

LUKE ix. 7, 8, 9.
Matt, xiv.1.
And at that time Herod the tetrarch heard of the fame On a prò-

gress, pro

bably in Mark vi. 14. And king Herod heard of him;

Galilee. Luke ix. 7. of all that was done by him: Mark vi. 14. (for his fame was spread abroad :) Lake is. 7. and he was perplexed, because that it was said by some,

that John the Baptist was risen from the dead : 8.

And of some, that Elias had appeared ; and of others,

that one of the old prophets was risen again. Mark vi. 15. Others said, That it is Elias. And others said, This is

a prophet, or as one of the prophets.
16.

But when Herod heard thereof, he said,
Matt. xiv. 2. unto his servants,
Lake ix. 9. John have I beheaded : but who is this of whom I hear

such things ?
Matt. xiv.2. This is—the Baptist :
Mark vi. 16.

It is John, whom I beheaded; he is risen from the dead.
14.
he said, That John the Baptist was risen from the dead,
and therefore mighty works do shew forth themselves in

him.
Luke ix. 9. And he desired to see him.
Mark vi, 17.

For Herod himself had sent forth and laid hold upon

John, and bound him
Matt, xiv.3. and put him
Mark vi. 17. in prison, for Herodias' sake, his brother Philip's wife:

for he had married her.
18.

For John had said unto Herod, It is not lawful for
thee to have thy brother's wife.

Therefore Herodias had a quarrel against him, and
19.
would have killed him ; but could not.

For Herod feared John, knowing that he was a just
man, and an holy, and observed him; and when he heard
him, he did many things, and heard him gladly.

6 The death of John the Baptist is placed about this time, by the most eminent chronologers. It cannot fail to strike the most unobservant, that at the moment in which the last prophet of the former dispensation was doomed to perish, the Messiah, the common God of the two dispensations, gave to the new description of prophets, whom he now appointed and sent forth for the first time, the authority and powers of the teachers of the Jewish Church. Christ is the golden chain that binds the one universal Church. The Baptist preaches till Christ was manifested. The Baptist was preserved in life till the kingdom of the Messiah was in some degree established. The time had now arrived, when a new dispensation, with a new priesthood, should commence; and the last instructor of the people, under the old dispensation, was now permitted to suffer, in order that undivided attention might be given to the long expected king of the house of David.

s

20.

Mat, xiv. 5.

And when he would have put him to death, he feared on a prothe multitude, because they counted him as a prophet. gress, pro

bably in 6. But

Galilee. Mark vi.21. when a convenient day was come, that Herod on his

birth-day made a supper to his lords, high captains, and

chief estates of Galilee :
22. And when the daughter of the said Herodias came in,

and danced
Matt. xiv.6. before them,
Mark vi. 22. and pleased Herod and them that sat with him, the king

said unto the damsel, Ask of me whatsoever thou wilt,

and I will give it thee.
23. And he sware unto her, Whatsoever thou shalt ask of

me, I will give it thee, unto the half of my kingdom.”
24.

And she went forth, and said unto her mother, What shall I ask? And she said, The head of John the Baptist. 25. And she came in straightway with haste unto the king,

and asked, saying, I will that thou give me Matt. xiv. 8. here, Mark vi. 25. by and by in a charger, the head of John the Baptist.

26. And the king was exceeding sorry; yet for his oath's

sake, and for their sakes which sat Matt. xiv.9. at meat, Mark vi. 26. with him, he would not reject her.

And immediately the king sent an executioner, and
commanded his head to be brought: and he went and be-

headed him in the prison.
28. And brought his head in a charger, and gave it to the

damsel: and the damsel
Mat. xiv.11. brought it
Mark vi. 28. and gave it to her mother.

29. And when his disciples heard of it, they came and took
up
his
corpse,

and laid it in a tomb.
Mat. xiv.12, and went and told Jesus.
MATT. xiv. part of ver. 2, 3. ver. 4. part of ver. 6. ver. 7. part of

ver. 8, 9. ver. 10. and part of ver. 11, 12.
2 And said-John-he is risen from the dead; and therefore
mighty works do shew forth themselves in him.

3 For Herod bad laid bold on John, and bound him-in
prison for Herodias' sake, his brother Philip's wife.

4 For John said unto him, It is not lawful for thee to bave her.

6 —when Herod's birth-day was kept, the daughter of Herodias danced- and pleased Herod.

7 Whereupon he promised with an oath to give her whatsoever she would ask.

8 And she, being before instructed of her mother, said, Give me-John Baptist's head in a charger.

9 And the king was sorry: nevertheless, for the oath's sake, and them which sat with him-he commanded it to be given her.

10 And he sent, and beheaded John in the prison.

11 And his head was brought in a charger, and given to the damsel: and she-to her mother.

12 And his disciples came and took up the body, and buried On a proit

gress, proLUKE ix. part of ver. 7. 9.

bably in

Galilee. 7 Now Herod the tetrarch heard 9 -and Herod said

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31.

SECTION III.
The Twelve return, and Jesus retires with them to the

Desert of Bethsaida.
MATT. xiv. 13, 14. MARK vi. 30-34. LUKE ix. 10, 11.

JOHN vi. 1, 2.
Mat. xiv.13. When Jesus heard of it,

Desert of Mark vi. 30. the apostles gathered themselves together unto Jesus, Bethsaida. Luke ix. 10. when they were returned, Mark vi. 30. and told him all things, both what they had done, and

what they had taught.

And he said unto them, Come ye yourselves apart into a desert place, and rest a while : for there were many coming and going; and they had no leisure so much as

to eat.

32. And
John vi. 1. After these things
Lake ix. 10. he took them and went aside privately
Mark vi, 32. And they departed-by ship privately.
John vi. 1. Jesus went over the sea of Galilee, which is the sea of

Tiberias,
Mark vi. 32. into a desert place,
Luke ix. 10. belonging to the city called Bethsaida.
Mark vi. 33. And the people saw them departing, and many knew

him,
Mat. xiv.13. and when the people had heard thereof, they
Mark vi. 33. ran afoot thither out of all cities, and came together unto

bim.
34. And Jesus when he came out saw much people, and

was moved with compassion towards them, because they

were as sheep not having a shepherd : Luke ix. 11. and he received them, and spake unto them of the king

dom of God,
Mark vi. 34. and he began to teach them many things,
Luke ix. 11. and healed them that had need of healing.
John vi. 2. And a great multitude followed him, because they saw
his miracles which he did on them that were diseased.

Matt. xiv. part of ver. 13. and ver. 14.
13 – he departed thence by ship into a desert place apart-
followed him on foot out of the cities.

14 And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was
moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick.

LUKE ix. part of ver. 10, 11.
10 And the apostles-told him all that they had done. And
into a desert place-

11 And the people, when they knew it, followed bim

Julian Pe

SECTION IV. riod, 4741. Vulgar Æra,

Five thousand are fed miraculously? 28. About the MATT. xiv. 15–21. MARK vi. 35–44. LUKE ix. 12-17. time of the Passover.

JOHN vi. 3–14. John vi. 3. And Jesus went up into a mountain, and there he sat on the way with his disciples.

to Jerusa

lem. * Many of the circumstances in this miracle demonstrate the peculiar wisdom with which, as I have so often shewn, our Lord uniformly acted, and are worthy of our attention.

Christ here first shewed that his power was superior to that of Elisha, who fed a hundred men with bread of the first fruits, twenty small barley loaves, and some ears of corn in the husk thereof, 2 Kings iv. 42, 43. The Rabbis make these loaves twenty-two; the loaf of the first fruits being one, and the ears of corn being equivalent to another loaf, and they suppose that two thousand two hundred men were fed by them; each hundred having their single loaf set before them, to be superior to that of Elisha; for he fed one thousand men with one loaf: and, that there might be no appearance of deception nor collusion, he made the whole number sit down in companies, (nuv niv in ranks, or in divisions, as trees in a vineyard,) by fifties, and by hundreds, that the whole number might be accurately and universally ascertained. The accounts of this miracle were published by St. Matthew and St. Mark, while the greater portion of the persons who had been partakers of the miracle were living. None contradicted, or depied, or explained away, the account.

It is scarcely possible to imagine a more wonderful proof of the creative power of Christ, than was displayed in this mi. racle. The loaves were of the small kind, common in the country. The fishes were, in all probability, also of that sort which were called by the Jews ugogin, wbich is interpreted by the gloss small fishes (a). Nonnus (6) calls them two fishes from the adjacent lake broiled, or roasted, (or dried in the sun.)

-και άγγιπόρου διδυμάονος ιχθύας άλμης, ,

Ιχθύας οπταλεους διδυμάονας, &c.
This small supply of provision was perceived to multiply and
grow, either in the hands of the Apostles as they were minis-
tering then to the people, or in the hands of the people them-
selves, who, in all probability, saw the small fragments of
hread or fish with which they had been presented visibly, in-
crease while they held them in their hands ; till the hunger of
each was fully satisfied; and sufficient was still left for others
who might come after them. It was this immediate and actual
proof of the presence of a Creator, which compelled the excla-
mation of the multitude, that their expeeted Messiah was come.

Witsius has a curious remark on the gradation of Christ's
miracles. His first miracle provided for a family the customary
provision for a festival, not indeed absolutely necessary, yet
much to be desired, when the mode of prolonging and cele-
brating the marriage ceremonies among the Jews, is taken into
consideration. He then satisfied the hunger of thousands, by
multiplying their bread and a few small fishes. He proceeded
to the curing of the sick. He healed one who had been diseased
twelve years, Mark v. 25. another eighteen, Luke xiii. 11, an.
other thirty-eight years, John v. 5. another from childhood,

On the way

may

take a

Send them away,

Jobp vi. 4. And the Passover, a feast of the Jews was nigh.
5. When Jesus then lifted

up
his
eyes,
and
saw a great to Jerusa-

lem.
company come unto him, he saith unto Philip, Whence

shall we buy bread, that these may eat?
6. And this he said to prove him: for he himself knew

what he would do.
7.

Philip answered him, Two hundred pennyworth is not
sufficient for them, that every one of them

little.
Mark vi. 35. And when the day was now far spent, his
Lake ix. 12. twelve
Mark vi. 35. disciples came unto him, and said, This is a desart place,

and now the time is far passed:

36.
Luke ix. 12. the multitude
Mark vi. 36. that they may go into the
Luke ix.12. towns and
Mark vi. 36. country round about, and into the villages,
Like ix. 12. and lodge,
Mark vi. 36. and buy themselves bread: for they have nothing to eat.
Mark vi. 37. He answered, and said unto them,
Mat. xiv. 16. They need not depart:
Mark vi. 37. Give ye them to eat. And they say unto him, Shall we

go, and buy two hundred pennyworth of bread, and

give them to eat?
38. He saith unto them, How many

loaves have

ye
And when they knew, they say, five and two
fishes.
Jobn vi. 8. One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter's brother,

saith unto him,
9. There is a lad here, which hath five barley loaves, and

two small fishes : but what are they among so many ?
Mat.xiv.18. And he said, Bring them hither to me.
John vi. 10. And Jesus said,
Luke ix. 14. to his disciples,
John vi. 10. Make the men sit down,
Lake ix. 14. by fifties in a company,

? go

and see.

Matt. ix. 21. another from his birth, John ix. l. The pro-
gressive order which our Lord observed when he demonstrated
his power of raising the dead, in their various stages of cor-
ruption and decay, I have considered in another part of these
notes (c).

(a) T. Bab. Cetubot, fol. 60. 2. and Sanhedrim, fol. 49. 1. ap Gill in
John vi. 9. (6) 8vo. edit. p. 65. (c) Meletem. Leidens. Dissert. de
Miraculis Jesa, sect. vii. p. 242.

8 Two hundred pence was the sum fixed upon for a virgin's dowry; for the portion to be paid by a husband to a woman wbo was divorced; for the fine of the lesser modes of assault, and of various offences. The expression therefore was used proyerbially, to denote a large sum of monoy. See the references in Gill on Mark vi. in loc.

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