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Jesus cures a Centurion's slave in Capernaum.
Luke vii 1,—10. See § 28.

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AVING finished his sermon, Jesus went into Capernaum HAVING and cured a centurion's slave who was dangerously ill. Luke vii. 1. Now when he had ended all his sayings in the audience of the people, he entered into Capernaum. 2. And a certain centurion's servant, who was dear unto him, was sick and ready to die. 3. And when he heard of Jesus, he sent unto him the elders of the Jews, beseeching him that he would come and heat his servant. This centurion seems to have been what they called a proselyte of righteousness; for he was a lover of the Jewish nation on account of their religion, and had built them a synagogue for worship, probably in some heathen country, the inhabitants of Capernaum standing in no need of such a favour. His attachment to the Jews, and his uncommon generosity, could not fail to make him greatly beloved in that country-Hence the elders of Capernaum, where he now resided, heartily espoused his cause on this occasion, for they presented his petition to Jesus, and urged it from the consideration of his character. 4. And when they came to Jesus, they besought him instantly, saying, That he was worthy for whom he should do this. 5. For he loveth sur nation, and he hath built us a synagogue.Jesus, who embraced every opportunity of doing good, whether to the bodies or souls of men, did not decline this that was now offered to him. He cheerfully went with the elders as they desired: But in the way, some of the centurion's friends whom he had sent, met JeVOL. II.



Ver. 3. Sent unto him the elders of the Jews.] These elders were not the most aged persons'in Capernaum, but either the magistrates of the town, or the rulers of the synagogue, (aɛxsouraywyoi). For as it was anciently the custom of the Jews, to intrust the management of public affairs to persons advanced in years, as having most wisdom and experience, they called all who discharged those offices elders, even when in later times they were admitted to them, without any regard to their age at all.

sus with a message from the centurion, in which he expressed the highest opinion of our Lord's power, and desired him not to take the trouble of coming, but to order the cure, which he knew he could easily do. 6. Then Jesus vent with them. And when he was now not far from the house, the centurion sent friends to him, saying unto him, Lord, trouble not thyself, for I am not worthy that thou shouldest enter under my roof. 7. Wherefore neither thought I myself worthy to come unto thee; but say in a word, and my servant shall be healed. 8. For I also am a man under authority, having under me soldiers, and I say unto one, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it. See on Matt. viii. 9. § 28. 9. When Jesus heard these things, he marvelled at him, and turned him about, and said unto the people that followed him, I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel. 10. And they that were sent, returning to the house, found the servant whole that had been sick. The kindness of the centurion to his slave, and the anxiety he shewed to get him cured, was suitable to the character of an humane master, and exhibits an excellent pattern of duty very fit to be imitated by Christian masters, with whom it is but too common to treat their slaves and dependants, as if they were not creatures of the same rank with themselves, but of an inferior order.

See the reasons offered to prove this a different miracle from that which is recorded, Mat. viii. 5. § 28.

§ XL. The apostles receive their commission and instructions in Ca pernaum. Mat. x. 1,-42. Mark iii. 19,-21. See § 58.

AFTER curing the centurion's slave, Jesus went to Peter's house, where he usually lodged. See on Matth. iv. 13. § 25. He had been with the disciples the whole preceding night in the mountain, and with the multitude the greatest part of the day in the plain, probably without taking any meat. Wherefore, being come home, they were going to eat something. But the citizens, brought together by the report of the miracle performed on the centurion's slave, surrounded the house in a tumultuous manner, and perhaps called on him to cure their sick, a favour which they thought he was bound in humanity to grant them, since he could do it without being personally present with the afflicted. Mark iii. 19. And they went into an house. 20. And the multitude cometh together again, so that they could not so much as eat bread. This rudeness incensed the disciples not a little. 21. And when his friends heard of it, they went out to lay hold on him, for they said, He is beside himself *,


Ver. 21.] Most translations render this verse as we do; but the meaning which they give is false, and such as suggest a very unbecoming idea of our Lord, who on no occasion behaved so as to give his friends



The multitude being dispersed, Jesus called his twelve apostles, and conferred on them the power of working miracles, in confirmation of the doctrine they were appointed to preach, delivered them their commission or authorized them to preach it, and gave them such instructions as he thought proper to fit them for discharging the duties of their new office. Mat. x. 1. And when he had called unto him his twelve disciples. From Matthew's naming them the twelve, it appears that he considered them as elected before this, though he has given no account of it in his gospel-he gave them power against unclean spirits to cast them out. Evil spirits are called unclean, because they are wicked and delight in wickedness, which is the only pollution of a spiritual being, and because they excite men to the commission of it.-And to heal all manner of sickness, and all manner of diseases. power of working miracles was extremely necessary to the apostles, because being men of low degree, they could not otherwise have drawn the attention of the world, nor have gained credit to the unheard-of doctrines which they were to preach. 2. Now the names of the twelve apostles are these: the first Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother, James the son of Zebedee and John his brother. 3. Philip and Bartholomew, Thomas and Matthew the publican, James the son of Alpheus and Lebbeus whose sirname was Thaddeus. 4. Simon the Canaanite, and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed him. See § 37. where the history of the twelve apostles is given. 5. These twelve Jesus sent forth, namely, to preach the gospel and to work miracles (verse 7, 8.) and commanded them, saying, *Go not into the way of the Gentiles,

room to suspect that he was mad. The original runs thus. Kas UXBOAVTES οι παρ' αυτέ εξήλθον κρατήσαι αυτόν. ελεγον γαρ'. οτι εξεστη. Οι παρ' αυτέ, they that were with him, namely in the house, (ver. 19.) axxoavtis, heuring, ́ viz. the noise which the mob made at the door, they went out, ngaтnoaι AUTOY, to restrain or quell, not Jesus, for he was in the house, (ver. 19.) but the multitude or mob, (avtov, it, viz. axov) either by dispersing them or keeping them out; for they said, (iktorn, viz. oxλ) The multitude or mob is mad. The sense the verb xart has without dispute, Rev. vii. 1. xgatovτας της τέσσαρας ανέμες, holding, detaining, restraining, the four winds of the earth."


*Ver. 5. Go not into the way of the Gentiles.] It may seem strange that our Lord neither preached himself to the Gentiles, nor allowed his disciples to preach among them during his own life time; especially when it is considered, that he came into the world on purpose to destroy the polytheism of the heathens, their idol mediators, and their idolatrous worship, and to establish the knowledge of the true God, and of the only Mediator between God and man, and of the right method of obtaining his favour. But our wonder will cease, when the reason of his conduct is understood. As the Jews were the only people in the world who believed in the one true God, before his messengers attempted to preach him to the heathens, it was fit that they should prove their mission to the conviction of the Jews, instruct them more fully in the fundamental doctrines of religion,


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