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And it is observable that the latter evangelist, plainly copying from this part of the former Gospel, drops it however when he comes to the twenty third verse, the passage in question; as if to tell us, that this related not to the subject then in hand : and it certainly does not. For the gospel was to be preached, before the temple was destroyed, not only throughout all Judea, but among the Gentiles also, even to the uttermost parts of the then known and inhabited world Y.
Shall we then, with Theophylact? and others, understand the text before us to mean nothing more, than if it had been said, in plainer words, “I will come to you?” This, it should seem, is also inadmissible. As the apostles were sent into different districts, two
in the words and the order, exactly the same with the 12th and 13th verses of St. Mark; and the latter being copied from the former, that is the reason why the words twv & Irwy are not in St. Mark, though St. Matthew has them in the corresponding part of his Gospel, c. xxiv.9. The addition of the roth verse in St. Mark (c. xiii.) is a further proof, that these verses in St. Matthew (c. X. 17-22.) belong to the time after our Lord's ascension. St. Matthew expresses the same thing, but in different words, xxiv. 14.
y See Matt. xxiv. 14. Mark xiii, 10. 2 In loc. S. Chrysostom, Beza, &c.
and two together, their Lord could not well go to Them, and they did, in fact, return to Him. Then, had this been his intention, he would have said, I conceive, as he elfewhere does, “I will see you again,” or “I will come to you”;” and not have used a mode of speaking, which they would probably misapply.
The Messiah, it has been observed, was promised by the prophets, and expected by the Jews, as the ó epxouevos, he that was coming, or Thould come . On this ground it was probably, that the Coming of the Son of man is so frequently and emphatically applied, in the New Testament, to our blessed Lord; and though it sometimes may denote his bodily presence, yet not as unaccompanied
a Mark vi. 7. And so the seventy, Luke x. 1. b Luke ix. 10. Mark vi. 30. So likewise the seventy, Luke
John xvi. 22. xiv. 18.
See Kidder on the Messias, P. I. p. 37. See also Dr. Bandinel's excellent Sermons, p. 169.
e It seems in such instances not to be used simply, but to have some other words joined with it, as Matt. xi 19. Luke vii. 34. So too with regard to his future appearance to judge the world, it was said by the holy angels to the apostles, “ This same Jesus, which is taken up
into heaven, fall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into hea.
with some signal circumstance of dignity or power ; not a private interview between him and the apostles.
How They would understand the words it seems not difficult to explain. They believed their Master to be the Redeemer of Israel and they knew that his kingdom had been announced, by the preaching of the Baptist, But all that had been done, from his days to the present time, they considered, and rightly considered, as introductory to something more illustrious. What they were instructed to proclaim, and what their Lord himself taught, was ήγγικεν η βασιλεια, the kingdom of heaven is near, or at hand"; a phrase never used when the thing spoken of was actually present.
The whole space of the public ministry of our Lord was, if I may so call it, but the inchoation, or commencement, of his kingdom. He had indeed, by the descent of the Holy Ghost
upon him at his baptism, been anointed king; but the adversary, the prince of this world, the Saul, as it were, of this
ven." Acts i. ii. In other passages where coming is mentioned absolutely, as 1 Cor. xv. 23: Theff. ii. 19. &c, the word in the original is different. f Şee Matt. x. 7. iv. 17. &c.
Son of David, was not yet destroyed. On the cross the great consummation was pronounced; the shadows of the law were done away ; death was subdued, and he that had the power of death. By the resurrection the victory was made manifest ; and when he ascended into heaven, he was enthroned king at God's right hand, and gave, at this his solemn inauguration", gifts unto men, in the miraculous effusion of the Holy Spirit.
To this magnificent train of events it is probable our blessed Redeemer alluded, when he spoke of the coming of the Son of man, as about to take place, before the apostles should have gone over the cities of Israel. And although of these things they had then no conception, for they, with their countrymen, expected a Messiah invested with temporal authority and splendor ; yet being right in the main, in referring the words to the instating of their Lord in the throne of David, how that great event was to be brought about, and what should be the nature of his kingdom, were points which were left to be explained, partly by future conference with
& See Heb, ii, 14.
See Hammond's Pract. Catech. p. 21.
their divine Master, partly by the marvelous works themselves, but chiefly by the illumination of the Holy Spirit, which was to guide them into all the truth.
If to this interpretation it should be thought an objection, that the words are not referred to one single appearance ;
be answered, that the resurrection and ascension of our Lord and the mission of the Holy Ghost followed each other fo foon, and were, in the divine economy, so closely connected, that they may properly be regarded, not as separate independent facts, but rather as parts of one and the same transaction. Thus it is that the scripture seems to speak of them.; and
expofitors accordingly often apply a particular text to all the threek. If however any one chooses, with Grotius, to confine the passage to the last of these three glorious events, the descent of Holy Spirit, before which it is certain the kingdom of the Messiah was not fully come;
i See Eph. i. 20. where the refarrection and ascension of Christ are represented as one continued operation, if I may fo speak, of divine power. And in the same Epistle, c. iv. 8. the ascension of our Lord and the mission of the Holy Spirit are mentioned as of equally close connection. Compare John xiv. 28. xvi. 7. * So Grotius, Beza, &c. on Matt. xvi. 28.