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B. Wright Boston 145-29. 1874
TO THE GOSPEL OF ST. MATTHEW.
ST. MATTHEW'S Gospel was written before the other three. The author was an eyewitness of most of the facts, which he relates, being early called to the apostolic office, by Jesus Christ himself. Besides the name of Matthew, he had also that of Levi, being the son of Alpheus; but not of that Alphe'us or Cle/ophas, who was the father of James. He was originally by profession a Publican, or collector of the Roman Taxes. His business was to collect the customs of such commodities, as came by the sea of Galilee, and to receive tribute from such passengers, as went by water. This lucrative office he cheerfully left for the sake of Jesus Christ, to whom he became a faithful attendant, and an eye-witness of all his mir
St. Matthew's Gospel was, according to the best judges, written between A. D. 61 and 64, at a time when the Hebrews were suffering a heavy persecution, which almost drove them to apostacy, and which induced St. Paul to write his Epistle to them. In these circumstances nothing could be more necessary and useful to them, than a history of the miracles and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It is probable, therefore, that both this Gospel and the Epistle to the Hebrews were written with the same view, which was to preserve and confirm the Christians of Judea in the faith.
This Gospel contains several plain predictions of the miseries and desolations about to come upon Jerusalem, and of the destruction of the temple: besides many other figurative intimations of the same thing, which could not safely be published, till towards the conclusion of the Jewish state.
St. Matthew wrote this Gospel for the service of the Jews in Palestine, with a view to confirm those who believed, and to convert, if possible, those who did not believe. This opinion is supported by several passages of his Gospel. Thus this evangelist begins with the genealogy of Jesus Christ from Abraham; which, agreeably to the Jewish custom, he gives according to his legal descent by Joseph his supposed father: deducing it down from Abraham through David, to show his title to the kingdom. of Israel. Thus also he often refers to Jewish customs; relates most of our Saviour's discourses against Jewish errors and superstitions; (see chapter xxiii. 1–33.) quotes the greatest number of passages from the Jewish Scriptures; answers the most considerable Jewish objections; and frequently makes use of the terms and phrases of Jewish theology.
Nothing certain is known of the death of St. Matthew. Some have supposed he suffered martyrdom in Per'sia, others, that he died in Abyssin/ia, after having there preached the Gospel.
In this edition of the New Testament, proper names are generally accented where they first occur. The scholar must be very careful to learn the true pronunciation of every name where it first occurs. Some of the most difficult names are accented in many places; and when the mark for accent will not make the pronunciation perfectly plain, the word is spelled at the bottom of the page as it ought to be pronounced.
"It is well known to the fearned, and should be to all, that the division of the Bible into chapters and verses, the punctuation, and the words usually printed in italics, are of no au thority whatever. The several Books of the New Testament, according to the best authority we can get, were written in an uniform character, without capitals, without chapters, without verses, without punctuation, or any break or other index by which to determine whether a particular letter belonged to this or that word, or whether a particular word belonged to this or that sentence; the sense was the only guide to the proper division. But as in reading it is necessary to have some punctuation, either expressed or understood, it is probable that some marks for pauses were very early introduced into the text. As to the division into chapters, it was introduced in the thirteenth century, by Cardinal Hugo, for the purpose of adapting the New Testament to a Latin concordance; and the division into verses was performed by Robert Stevens, while on a journey from Lyons to Paris, in order to adapt it to a Greek Concordance which he was then preparing for the press. He placed the figures in the margin of his page. The first edition in which the verses were printed separate with the number prefixed to each, was the English New Testament, printed at Geneva, A. D. 1557. In translating from one language to another it is perhaps necessary to introduce some words which have not words corresponding to them in the original. This arises from the different idioms of different languages; one often requiring the explicit statement of what the other conveys by implication. But as the implication may not always be understood, the explicit statements in the translation may be wrong. The translators of our New Testament have therefore done wisely in printing those words in italics which have no corresponding words in the original; thereby keeping them distinct, and giving to every one liberty to supply their place with any thing or nothing, as they shall think most agreeable to the sense and order of the context."
THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO ST. MATTHEW.
1 The genealogy of Jesus Christ: 18
ham to David, are fourteen genera-
HE book of the generation of away into Babylon unto Christ, are
the son of Abraham.
2 Abraham begat Isaac, and Isaac begat Jacob, and Jacob begat Judas and his brethren,
3 And Judas begat Pha'res and Za'ra of Tha'mar, and Pha'res begat Es'rom, and Esrom begat Aram,
4 And A'ram begat Amin'adab, and Amin adab begat Naas'son, and Naasson begat Sal mon,
5 And Sal mon begat Bo'oz3 of Rachab, and Bo'oz begat Obed of Ruth, and Obed begat Jesse,
6 And Jesse begat David the king, and David the king begat Solomon of her that had been the wife of Uri'as,
7 And Solomon begat Robo am, and Roboam begat Abi'a, and Abia begat Asa,
8 And A'sa begat Jos'aphat, and Josaphat begat Jo'ram, and Joram begat Ozi'as,
9 And Ozias begat Jo'atham, and Joatham begat A'chaz, and A'chaz begat Ezeki'as,
10 And Ezekias begat Manas'ses, and Manasses begat A'mon, and Amon begat Josi'as,
11 And Josias begat Jechoni'as and his brethren about the time they were carried away to Babylon:
12 And after they were brought to Babylon, Jechonias begat Sala'thiel, and Sala'thiel begat Zorob'abel,
13 And Zorobabel begat Abi'ud, and Abiud begat Eliakim, and Eliakim begat A'zor,
14 And Azor begat Sa'doc, and Sadoc begat A'chim,5 and Achim begat Eli'ud,
15 And Eliud begat Eleazar, and Eleazar begat Mat'than, and Matthan begat Jacob,
16 And Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called CHRIST.7
17 So all the generations, from Abra
1 Generation. The history or lineage of Jesus Christ.
18 ¶ Now, the birth of Jesus Christ
19 Then Joseph her husband, being
20 But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife; for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.
21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS; for he shall save his people from their sins.
22 (Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying,
23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name EMMAN'UEL; which, being interpreted, is, God with us.)
6 Jesus. That is, Saviour.
7 Christ. Messiah, or Anointed
24 Then Joseph, being raised from sleep, did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife;
25 And knew her not till she had brought forth her first-born son; and he called his name JESUS.
Questions. What message was sent by the
By what name was our Saviour to be called?
The wise men, coming to Jesus
Herod3 the king, behold, there came 9 When they had heard the king, wise men from the east to Jeru'sa- they departed; and lo, the star, which lem,5 they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was.
2 Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east,7 and are come to worship him.
3 When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem ith im.
4 And, when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes1o of the people together, he demanded of them where Christ should be born.
12 And being warned of God in a
5 And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judea; for thus it is writ-dream that they should not return to ten by the prophet,11 Herod, they departed into their own country another way.
And thou Beth-lehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes12 of Juda; for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel.
13 And, when they were departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeareth to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou
7 Then Herod, when he had privily called the wise men, inquired of them there until I bring thee word; for diligently what time the star appeared. Herod will seek the young child to destroy him.
14 When he arose, he took the young child and his mother by night, and departed into Egypt;
nean sea. It has at different times been called the Land of Canaan, the Land of Israel, Judea, the Land of Promise, the Holy Land, &c. and by the Greeks and Romans, Pal'estine.
15 And was there until the death of Herod; that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Out of Egypt have I called my Son.
16 Then Herod, when he saw that 3 This Herod was called the Great, there he was mocked13 of the wise men, was being several of this name. Augus/tus Caesar, exceeding wroth, and sent forth and emperor of Rome, made him king or governor slew all the children that were in of Judea, which at this time was reduced to Beth-lehem, and in all the coasts a Roman province. Herod was cruel, and thereof, from two years old and under, jealous lest the goverr.ment should pass out according to the time which he had diligently inquired of the wise men.
of his hands.
17 Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy14 the prophet, saying,
18 In Ra'ma was there a voice heard, lamentation, and weeping, and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children, and would not be comforted, because they are not.
8 And he sent them to Beth-lehem, and said, Go, and search diligently for the young child; and, when ye have found him, bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also.
4 Wise men. Heathen or Gentile philosophers, called Magi, probably from Persia or India.
5 Jerusalem, the capital of Judea.
6 Star. Probably a meteor or luminous vapour.
7 In the east. We in the east, &c. for the wise men came from the east to Judea, and
inust have seen the star in the west.
8 Was troubled, lest he should lose his kingdom, and the succession of it in his own family.
9 The chief priests were the leaders of the 24 orders or classes of priests. There was strictly speaking but one chief or high-priest; though in case of sickness or other detention from duty, the second in order officiated, and was then sometimes called high-priest.
10. Scribes. Writers and expositors of the law of Moses, (see Introduction, page 4.) They were a corrupt set of men, who perverted the Scriptures, and extolled the traditions of the elders or ancients above them.
10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy.
11 ¶ And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down and worshipped him; and, when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.
11 Prophets. The word prophet» signifies teacher. The prophets instructed and admonished the Jews. They also frequently had visions, and foresaw future events, and for this reason they were sometimes called seers. 12 Princes. That is, chief cities.
19 But when Herod was dead, behold, an angel of the Lord appeareth in a dream to Joseph in Egypt,
20 Saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and go into the land of Israel; for they are dead which sought the young child's life.
child and his mother, and came into 21 And he arose, and took the young the land of Israel.
22 But when he heard that Archelaus15 did reign in Judea in the room
13 Mocked, deluded or deceived.
of his father Herod, he was afraid to tion of vipers, who hath warned you go thither; notwithstanding, being to flee from the wrath to come? warned of God in a dream, he turned 8 Bring forth, therefore, fruits meet aside into the parts of Galilee; for repentance.
23 And he came and dwelt in a city 9 And think not to say within yourcalled Nazareth; that it might be ful- selves, We have Abraham to our fafilled which was spoken by the pro- ther; for I say unto you, That God is phets, He shall be called a Naza-able of these stones to raise up chilrene.16 dren unto Abraham.
10 And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees; therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
Questions. In what place was Jesus born?
Who was king of Judea at this time?
6 And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins.
7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O genera
16 Nazarene, one devoted to the peculiar service of God; it was also a term of reproach among the Jews, who would not fail to fix it on our Saviour.
11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance; but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear; he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire:
1 Kingdom of heaven, the kingdom of God, and the Gospel of the kingdom, generally mean the same thing, i, e. the Gospel dispensation, or the Christian religion, which is a spiritual kingdom in the hearts of men.
12 Whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge10 his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.
13 Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him.
14 But John forbade him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me?
15 And Jesus answering, said unto him, Suffer it to be so now; for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness.12 Then he suffered him.
16 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water; and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:
17 And, lo, a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I ain well pleased.
What did he teach that men must do in order to become disciples of Jesus Christ, or to prepare for the kingdom of heaven?
How did he address the Pharisees?
2 Esaias, Isaiah.
8 And now the axe, &c. The Gospel is the last dispensation of mercy we are ever to ex
3 Lord. In the Hebrew of the Old Testa-pect. They who neglect and disobey it, must ment, Jehovah. suffer all the evils it denounces upon the im
9 Fan, an instrument to winnow grain or
4 Make his paths straight. In ancient penitent. times, when princes and sovereigns journeyed, pioneers or attendants went before to level corn. and straighten the way for them; so John 10 Purge or cleanse his floor; will entirely preached repentance and reformation to pre-separate the grain from the chaff. pare the way for the Saviour of men.
11 Garner. Granary, or store-house.
5 Camel's hair, a coarse cloth.
12 Fulfil all righteousness; perform all the 6 Pharisees and Sadducees; see Introduc-duties and ordinances of God according to his tion, page 3. appointment.
Questions. Who came to prepare the way for our Lord? verses 1, 2.
How was he clothed?
and dwelt in Capernaum, which is 1 Jesus fasteth, is tempted, and over-upon the sea-coast, in the borders of cometh; 17 beginneth to preach, and Zabulon and Neph'thalim: calleth some to be his disciples. 14 That it might be fulfilled which THEN was Jesus led up of the spi-was spoken by Esai'as the prophet, rit into the wilderness, to be tempted saying,
of the devil.
15 The land of Zabulon, and the
2 And when he had fasted forty land of Nephthalim, by the way of the days and forty nights, he was after-sea, beyond Jordan, Galilee of the ward an hungered. Gen'tiles:
3 And when the tempter came to 16 The people which sat in darkhim, he said, If thou be the Son of ness saw great light; and to them God, command that these stones be which sat in the region and shadow of made bread. death light sprung up.
17 From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent; for the kingdom of heaven is at hand;9
18 And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea; for they were fishers.
4 But he answered, and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God."
5 Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple,
6 And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down; for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee; and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.
7 Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.
8 Again the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;
9 And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.
10 Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan; for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.
11 Then the devil leaveth him; and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.
12 T Now, when Jesus had heard that John was cast into prison, he departed into Gal'ilee ;2
13 And, leaving Nazareth,3 he came
19 And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.
3 Nazareth, a small city of Galilee, about 50 miles north of Jerusalem, and a little west of Mount Tabor. It was noted for the wickedness of its inhabitants. In this obscure city our Saviour lived and laboured most of the thirty first years of his life; but when he began to preach, the people being offended, and attempting to destroy him, by throwing him from the brow of a hill, he escaped from their hands, and afterwards resided little in the place.
20 And they straightway left their nets, and followed him.
21 And going on from thence, he saw other two brethren, James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, in a ship with Zebedee their father, mending their nets; and he called them.
22 And they immediately left the ship and their father, and followed him.
4 Capernaum, one of the principal cities of Galilee, at the north end of lake Genesareth, where, after leaving Nazareth, Jesus frequently resided and taught; hence it was said to be exalted to heaven; but from its Christ, he said it should be cast down to hell. negligence in improving the instructions of The sufferings of this city from the Romans, soon after, were excessive.
1 Ministered unto, waited upon.
5 Jordan, the most considerable river of Judea, rises in mount Libanus. It falls into the earth and runs about fifteen miles under 2 Galilee, a large fertile territory in the ground, whence it rises again in a cave at the northern parts of Canaan. Here our Saviour foot of a mountain. In its course it flows and most of his disciples were educated; and through the lake Genes/areth, the sea of Galihere he taught, and wrought most of his mira-lee or Tiberias, and thence southward, after a winding course of about 150 miles, it falls into the large bituminous lake Asphaltiles, called also the Dead sea, the Salt sea, and the sea of Sodom.
23 ¶ And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues,10 and preaching the Gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sick
6 Darkness, ignorance.
Light, the divine instruction of Jesus
8 Region and shadow of death, great ignorance and wickedness.
9 Kingdom of heaven, see Matt. iii. Note 1. 10 Synagogue, a Jewish meeting house, or place of public worship.