John 9:23
Therefore said his parents, He is of age; ask him.
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(23) See Note on John 9:21.

9:18-23 The Pharisees vainly hoped to disprove this notable miracle. They expected a Messiah, but could not bear to think that this Jesus should be he, because his precepts were all contrary to their traditions, and because they expected a Messiah in outward pomp and splendour. The fear of man brings a snare, Pr 29:25, and often makes people deny and disown Christ and his truths and ways, and act against their consciences. The unlearned and poor, who are simple-hearted, readily draw proper inferences from the evidences of the light of the gospel; but those whose desires are another way, though ever learning, never come to the knowledge of the truth.His parents answered ... - To the first two questions they answered without hesitation. They knew that he was their son, and that he was born blind. The third question they could not positively answer, as they had not witnessed the means of the cure, and were afraid to express their belief. It appears that they had themselves no doubt, but they were not eye-witnesses, and could not be therefore legal evidence.

He is of age - He is of sufficient age to give testimony. Among the Jews this age was fixed at thirteen years.

If any man did confess that he was Christ - Did acknowledge that he was the Messiah. They had prejudged the case, and were determined to put down all free inquiry, and not to be convinced by any means.

Put out of the synagogue - This took place in the temple, or near the temple. It does not refer, therefore, to any immediate and violent putting forth from the place where they were. It refers to excommunication from the synagogue. Among the Jews there were two grades of excommunication; the one for lighter offences, of which they mentioned 24 causes; the other for greater offences. The first excluded a man for 30 days from the privilege of entering a synagogue, and from coming nearer to his wife or friends than 4 cubits. The other was a solemn exclusion forever from the worship of the synagogue, attended with awful maledictions and curses, and an exclusion from all contact with the people. This was called the curse, and so thoroughly excluded the person from all communion whatever with his countrymen, that they were not allowed to sell to him anything, even the necessaries of life (Buxtorf). It is probable that this latter punishment was what they intended to inflict if anyone should confess that Jesus was the Messiah: and it was the fear of this terrible punishment that deterred his parents from expressing their opinion.

18-23. the Jews did not believe … he had been born blind … till they called the parents of him that had received his sight—Foiled by the testimony of the young man himself, they hope to throw doubt on the fact by close questioning his parents, who, perceiving the snare laid for them, ingeniously escape it by testifying simply to the identity of their son, and his birth-blindness, leaving it to himself, as a competent witness, to speak as to the cure. They prevaricated, however, in saying they "knew not who had opened his eyes," for "they feared the Jews," who had come to an understanding (probably after what is recorded, Joh 7:50, &c.; but by this time well known), that whoever owned Him as the Christ would be put out of the synagogue—that is, not simply excluded, but excommunicated.Ver. 23,24. They were not able to obtain their design from the parents of this poor man; now they again call him, and advise him to give glory to God. Thus far they spake well, if they had been hearty and serious in what they said; for the man indeed had great reason to give God the glory, by whose power alone, exerted by his Son Christ Jesus, he had received his sight: but moral actions are made good or bad by their ends; and if we consider the end of these wretched men in this action of theirs, wherein they persuaded the poor man to his duty, the words will appear to have been spoken from hearts minding nothing less than the glory of God, and out of a design to vilify and depreciate his Son; whereas God hath set up his rest in his Son, and cannot be glorified but with, in, and through him; whom in the next words they maliciously defame, not only speaking of him contemptuously, calling him

this man, but affirm him amartwlov, not

a sinner only, but a notorious, scandalous sinner, as that word imports.

Therefore said his parents, he is of age,.... See Gill on John 9:21. Therefore said his parents, He is of age; ask him.
23. Therefore] Better, For this cause (John 12:18; John 12:27): comp. John 1:31, John 5:16; John 5:18, John 6:65, John 8:47.

He is of age; ask him] Or, He is of full age; ask him himself. This is the right order of the clauses here, and they have been altered in the Received Text of John 9:21 to match this verse.

Verse 23. - Therefore said his parents, He is of full age; ask him. They would not incur responsibility for the opinions of their son about his Healer. They knew perfectly well that it was the Jesus who was said to be the Christ of the nation, and they would not implicate themselves in giving any judgment on his claims. John 9:23
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