1. And it came to pass, that, as the people pressed upon him to hear the word of
God, he stood by the lake of Gennesaret,
[To hear the word of God, he stood by the lake, &c.] For they were wont to
teach also without the synagogue and Beth Midrash, in the highways and in the
streets. "Rabban Jochanan Ben Zaccai taught in the street before the Mountain of the
Temple the whole day." See the Gloss upon it: "Ben Azzai taught in the streets
This custom R. Judah forbade in this canon: "Let not the doctors teach their
disciples in the streets." And accordingly he severely rebuked R. Chaijam, because he
taught his brothers' sons in the street.
And yet it is related of the same R. Judah, R. Judah sat labouring in the law [labouring
in the word and doctrine, as the expression is 1 Timothy 5:17], "before the
Babylonish synagogue in Zippor: there was a bullock passed by him to the slaughter, and it
lowed." This bullock because he did not deliver from the slaughter, he was struck
with the toothache for the space of thirteen years.
5. And Simon answering said unto him, Master, we have toiled all the night, and have
taken nothing: nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net.
[We have toiled all night.] In the Talmud's way of expressing it laborious
all night. Labouring all the day.
12. And it came to pass, when he was in a certain city, behold a man full of
leprosy: who seeing Jesus fell on his face, and besought him, saying, Lord, if thou
wilt, thou canst make me clean.
[When he was in a certain city, behold, a man full of leprosy.] "The walled
cities are more holy than the land of Israel in general, because they cast out the
leprous from them." Which must be understood (if we allow of the Rabbins for
interpreters) of cities that had been walled from the days of Joshua. If this city which
the evangelist here mentions were of that number, no leper would have been suffered in it,
unless absolved from his uncleanness by the priest. For the leprosy remained after that
absolution; and the sick man was not healed but restored to the church. That the man is
here said to be full of leprosy; the passage may not impertinently be compared with
Whether he had been purified by the priest before or no, however, Christ sends him to
the priest, to offer what was required from the leper that was cleansed. The law of
Moses hardly supposeth the leper healed when he was made clean. It is a
question, indeed, whether the disease was ever curable but by a miracle. And therefore is
this man sent to the Temple to shew himself to the priest, and offer for a testimony
unto them, verse 14: that is, that he might bear witness, that the leprosy, an
incurable disease, was now healed by miracle, as formerly it had been in Miriam and
Naaman: and so there was now a great prophet arisen in Israel.
17. And it came to pass on a certain day, as he was teaching, that there were
Pharisees and doctors of the law sitting by, which were come out of every town of Galilee,
and Judaea, and Jerusalem: and the power of the Lord was present to heal them.
[On a certain day.] In Talmudic writing it is on a certain time.
27. And after these things he went forth, and saw a publican, named Levi, sitting at
the receipt of custom: and he said unto him, Follow me.
[At the receipt of custom.] The house of tribute. "This thing is
like a king of flesh and blood passing by the house of tribute. He saith to his
servants, Pay the tax to the publicans."
39. No man also having drunk old wine straightway desireth new: for he saith,
The old is better.
[The old is better.] Is not the old better? The Gloss is, Old wine:
that is, of three years old.
Wine of three leaves. The Gloss is, "Of three years: because from the time
that the vine had produced that wine, it had put forth its leaves three times."