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Scofield Reference Notes (1917 Edition)

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Chapter 4

4:1  Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.

Then was Jesus

The temptation of Christ, the "last Adam" 1 Corinthians 15:45 is best understood when contrasted with that of the "first man Adam." Adam was tempted in his place of lord of creation, a lordship with but one reservation, the knowledge of good and evil ; Genesis 1:26; 2:16,17. Through the woman he was tempted to add that also to his dominion. Falling, he lost all. But Christ had taken the place of a lowly Servant, acting only from and in obedience to the Father. ; Philippians 2:5-8; John 5:19; 6:57; 8:28,54 (See Scofield "Isaiah 41:8") that He might redeem a fallen race and a creation under the curse ; Genesis 3:17-19; Romans 8:19-23. Satan's one object in the threefold temptation was to induce Christ to act from Himself, in independency of His Father. The first two temptations were a challenge to Christ from the god of this world to prove Himself indeed the Son of God (Matthew 4:3,6). The third was the offer of the usurping prince of this world to divest himself of that which rightfully belonged to Christ as Son of man and Son of David, on the condition that He accept the sceptre on Satan's world-principles (cf. John 18:36). See Scofield "Revelation 13:8". Christ defeated Satan by a means open to His humblest follower, the intelligent use of the word of God (Matthew 4:4,7). In his second temptation Satan also used Scripture, but a promise available only to one in the path of obedience. The scene give emphasis to the vital importance of "rightly dividing the word of truth" 2 Timothy 2:15.

4:5  Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple,

holy city

In the N.T. one Greek word, hagios, in its various forms, is rendered, "holy," "holiness," "sanctify," "sanctified," "sanctification." Like the heb. qodesh, it signifies "set apart for God." The important references follow Matthew 4:5, marg.

(See Scofield "Matthew 4:5")

4:6  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.


(See Scofield "Hebrews 1:4") .

4:8  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;


The Greek word kosmos means "order," "arrangement," and so, with the Greeks, "beauty"; for order and arrangement in the sense of system are at the bottom of the Greek conception of beauty.

When used in the N.T. of humanity, the "world" of men, it is organized humanity-- humanity in families, tribes, nations--which is meant. The word for chaotic, unorganized humanity--the mere mass of man is thalassa, the "sea" of men (e.g.) Revelation 13:1 (See Scofield "Revelation 13:8") . For "world" (kosmos) in the bad ethical sense, "world system" John 7:7.

4:11  Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.

angels (See Scofield "Hebrews 1:4")

4:17  From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.

at hand

"At hand" is never a positive affirmation that the person or thing said to be "at hand" will immediately appear, but only that no known or predicted event must intervene. When Christ appeared to the Jewish people, the next thing in the order of revelation as it then stood, should have been the setting up of the Davidic kingdom. In the knowledge of God, not yet disclosed, lay the rejection of the kingdom (and King), the long period of the mystery-form of the kingdom, the world-wide preaching of the cross, and the out-calling of the Church. But this was as yet locked up in the secret counsels of God. Matthew 13:11,17; Ephesians 3:3-10.

kingdom See note 2, (See Scofield "Matthew 5:2") .

is at hand (See Scofield "Matthew 3:2") . For Another Point of View: See Topic 301207

4:18  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.

two brethren

Peter and John were already disciples, John 1:35-42. This is a call to service.

4:21  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.


Two persons are called by this name in the N.T.

(1) James the son of Zebedee, an apostle Matthew 10:2 and the brother of the apostle John, apart from whom he is never mentioned, and with whom, together with Peter, he was admitted to the especial intimacy of our Lord. ; Matthew 17:1; Mark 5:37; 9:2; 14:33 He was martyred by Herod. Acts 12:2

(2) A son of Alphaeus (or Cleopas) and Mary the sister of Mary the mother of Jesus. (See Scofield "Matthew 1:16") and brother of Joses. Mark 15:40. He was, therefore, a cousin of the Lord Jesus. He is called James "the less" Mark 15:40 lit. little, i.e. of shorter stature than James the son of Zebedee). He was an apostle. Matthew 10:3 It has been conjectured that "Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus" Matthew 10:3 was identical with the Juda of Luke 6:16 who is there called "of i.e. 'son' or 'brother' as is has been variously translated] James." A Juda is mentioned with a James and Joses and Simon in Mark 6:3 as "brother" of our Lord (See Scofield "Matthew 13:55, marg.). Matthew 13:55. The Gospels mention no other James who could be called the brother of the Lord Jesus, but James the less was certainly the son of Alphaeus and Mary the sister of our Lord's mother. The conclusion seems, therefore most probable that ; Matthew 10:3; 13:55; Mark 3:18; 6:3; Luke 6:15; Acts 1:13; 12:17; Mark 15:13; 21:18; Galatians 1:19; Galatians 2:9,12; James 1:1 refer to James the less, son of Alphaeus and Mary, and cousin, or, according to Jewish usage, "brother" of the Lord Jesus. He was the author of the Epistle of James.

4:23  And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people.


(See Scofield "Matthew 3:2") .

4:24  And his fame went throughout all Syria: and they brought unto him all sick people that were taken with divers diseases and torments, and those which were possessed with devils, and those which were lunatick, and those that had the palsy; and he healed them.


(Greek - daimonizomai [daimoni­zomai] ," demonized; (See Scofield "Matthew 7:22") .

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These files are considered public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available in the Online Bible Software Library.

Bibliography Information
Scofield, C. I. "Scofield Reference Notes on Matthew 4". "Scofield Reference Notes (1917 Edition)". <>. 1917.  


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