The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire BibleMatthew 14:15
And when it was evening…
Mark says, "when the day was
now far spent"; and Luke, "when the day began to wear away"; it was
upon the decline of the day. The Jews, as Grotius rightly observes,
had two evenings; the one began when the sun declined at noon, and
the other at sun setting: now it was the former of these, and not
the latter, that was now come; for after this, you read of another
evening that was come, (Matthew 14:23) between which two evenings Christ
made the multitude to sit down, and he fed them in a miraculous
manner; and the disciples reason for the dismission of the
multitude, that might go into the neighbouring villages, and buy
provisions, shows that it could not be the last, but the first of
these evenings, that is here meant.
His disciples came to him;
the twelve, whom he had left in that part
of the desert he retired to; or on the mount, where he had sat down
with them for their rest and refreshment:
saying, this is a desert place;
where no food was to be had; where
were no houses of entertainment:
and the time is now past;
not the time of the day, but of dining:
the usual dinner time was past, which, with the Jews, was the fifth
hour of the day, and answers to eleven o'clock with us, or at
furthest six; which, with us, is twelve at noon; concerning which,
the Jewish doctors thus dispute F6.
``The first hour, is the time of eating for the Lydians, or
Cannibals; the second for thieves, the third for heirs,
the fourth for workmen, and the fifth for every man: but
does not R. Papa say, that the fourth is the time of
dining for every man? But if so, if the fourth is the time
for every man, the fifth is for workmen, and the sixth for
the disciples of the wise men.''
Which is elsewhere F7 delivered with some little variation, thus;
``the first hour is the time of eating for Lydians; the
second, for thieves; the third, for heirs; the fourth, for
workmen; the fifth, for scholars; and the sixth, for every
man: but does not R. Papa say…''
But supposing the usual time of dining to be, at the furthest, at
the sixth hour, at twelve o'clock, this time must be elapsed, since
the first evening was commenced; so that the reasoning of the
disciples is very just,
send the multitude away.
Christ was preaching to them, the disciples
move that he would break off his discourse, and dismiss them; in the
synagogue the manner of dismissing the people was, by reading the
(hrjph) , or "dismission", which was some passage out of the prophetic
That they may go into the villages and buy themselves victuals;
little towns which lay nearest the desert, where they might be
supplied with suitable provisions.
F6 T. Bab. Sabbat. fol. 11. 1.
F7 T. Bab. Pesachim, fol. 12. 2.
The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rightes Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
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Gill, John. "Commentary on Matthew 14:15". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". <http://classic.studylight.org/com/geb/view.cgi?book=mt&chapter=014&verse=015>. 1999.