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1: (Mk 11:1,Lu 19:29,Joh 12:12).
5: The daughter of Sion - That is, the inhabitants of Jerusalem:
the first words of the passage are cited from (Isa 62:11); the
rest from (Zec 9:9). The ancient Jewish doctors were wont to
apply these prophecies to the Messiah. On an ass - The Prince of
Peace did not take a horse, a warlike animal. But he will ride
on that by and by, (Re 19:11). In the patriarchal ages,
illustrious persons thought it no disgrace to make use of this
animal: but it by no means appears, that this opinion prevailed,
or this custom continued, till the reign of Tiberias. Was it a
mean attitude wherein our Lord then appeared? Mean even to
contempt! I grant it: I glory in it: it is for the comfort of my
soul for the honour of his humility, and for the utter confusion
of all worldly pomp and grandeur.
7: They set him thereon - That is, on the clothes.
8: A great multitude spread their garments in the way - A custom
which was usual at the creation of a king, (2Ki 9:13).
9: The multitudes cried, saying - Probably from a Divine impulse;
for certainly most of them understood not the words they uttered.
Hosanna - (Lord save us) was a solemn word in frequent use among
the Jews. The meaning is, "We sing hosanna to the Son of David.
Blessed is he, the Messiah, of the Lord. Save. Thou that art in
the highest heavens." Our Lord restrained all public tokens of
honour from the people till now, lest the envy of his enemies
should interrupt his preaching before the time . But this reason
now ceasing, he suffered their acclamations, that they might be a
public testimony against their wickedness, who in four or five
days after cried out, Crucify him, crucify him. The expressions
recorded by the other evangelists are somewhat different from
these: but all of them were undoubtedly used by some or others
of the multitude.
11: This is Jesus from Nazareth - What a stumbling block was this!
if he was of Nazareth, he could not be the Messiah. But they who
earnestly desired to know the truth would not stumble thereat:
for upon inquiry (which such would not fail to make) they would
find, he was not of Nazareth, but Bethlehem.
12: He cast out all that sold and bought - Doves and oxen for
sacrifice. He had cast them out three years before, (Joh 2:14);
bidding them not make that house a house of merchandise. Upon
the repetition of the offence, he used sharper words. In the
temple - That is, in the outer court of it, where the Gentiles used
to worship. The money changers - The exchangers of foreign money
into current coin, which those who came from distant parts might
want to offer for the service of the temple.(Mk 11:11,15,Lu 19:45).
13: A den of thieves - A proverbial expression, for a harbour
of wicked men. (Isa 56:7,Jer 7:11).
16: (Ps 8:2).
17: (Mk 11:11,12).
20: The disciples seeing it - As they went by, the next day.
21: Jesus answering, said, If ye have faith - Whence we may learn,
that one great end of our Lord in this miracle was to confirm
and increase their faith: another was, to warn them against
unfruitfulness. (Mt 17:20).
23: When he was come into the temple, the chief priests came
- Who thought he violated their right: and the elders of the
people - Probably, members of the sanhedrim, to whom that title
most properly belonged: which is the more probable, as they were
the persons under whose cognizance the late action of Christ, in
purging the temple, would naturally fall. These, with the chief
priests, seem purposely to have appeared in a considerable
company, to give the more weight to what they said, and if need
were, to bear a united testimony against him. As he was teaching
- Which also they supposed he had no authority to do, being
neither priest, nor Levite, nor scribe. Some of the priests
(though not as priests) and all the scribes were authorized
teachers. By what authority dost thou these things - Publicly
teach the people! And drive out those who had our commission
to traffic in the outer court? (Lu 20:1,Mk 11:27).
24: I will ask you one thing - Who have asked me many: The baptism,
that is, the whole ministry of John, was it from heaven or from
men? - By what authority did he act and teach? Did man or God give
him that authority? Was it not God? But if so, the consequence
was clear. For John testified that Jesus was the Christ.
25: Why did ye not believe him - Testifying this.
27: Neither tell I you - Not again, in express terms: he had often
told them before, and they would not believe him.
30: He answered, I go, sir: but went not - Just so did the scribes
and Pharisees: they professed the greatest readiness and zeal in
the service of God: but it was bare profession, contradicted by
all their actions.
32: John came in a way of righteousness - Walking in it, as well
as teaching it. The publicans and harlots - The most notorious
sinners were reformed, though at first they said, I will not.
And ye seeing the amazing change which was wrought in them,
though at first ye said, I go, sir, repented not afterward - Were
no more convinced than before. O how is this scripture fulfilled
at this day!
33: A certain householder planted a vineyard - God planted the
Church in Canaan; and hedged it round about - First with the law,
then with his peculiar providence: and digged a wine press
- Perhaps it may mean Jerusalem: and built a tower - The temple:
and went into a far country - That is, left the keepers of his
vineyard, in some measure, to behave as they should see good.(Mk 12:1,Lu 20:9).
34: He sent his servants - His extraordinary messengers, the
prophets: to the husbandmen - The ordinary preachers or ministers
of the Jews.
41: They say - Perhaps some of the by - standers, not the chief
priests or Pharisees; who, as St. Luke relates, said, God
forbid, (Lu 20:16).
42: The builders - The scribes and priests, whose office it was
to build up the Church. Is become the head of the corner - Or
the chief corner stone: he is become the foundation of the
Church, on which the whole building rests, and is the principal
corner stone, for uniting the Gentiles to it, as the chief corner
stone of a house supports and links its two sides together.(Ps 118:22).
43: Therefore - Because ye reject this corner stone. The kingdom
of God - That is, the Gospel.
44: Whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken - Stumblers
at Christ shall even then receive much hurt. He is said to fall
on this stone, who hears the Gospel and does not believe. But on
whomsoever it shall fall - In vengeance, it will utterly destroy him.
It will fall on every unbeliever, when Christ cometh in the clouds
of heaven. (Lu 20:18).