Matthew 9:4
And Jesus knowing their thoughts said, Why think you evil in your hearts?
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(4) Knowing their thoughts.—The better MSS. give “seeing,” as with an immediate act of intuition. St. Mark adds his usual “immediately,” and both he and St. Luke use the word which implies fulness of knowledge.

Wherefore think ye evil?—Literally, evil things. The thoughts were evil because, in face of the mighty works and the divine wisdom of the Teacher, they were assuming that He had wantonly spoken words that involved the most extreme of all forms of sin against the God in whose name He taught.

9:1-8 The faith of the friends of the paralytic in bringing him to Christ, was a strong faith; they firmly believed that Jesus Christ both could and would heal him. A strong faith regards no obstacles in pressing after Christ. It was a humble faith; they brought him to attend on Christ. It was an active faith. Sin may be pardoned, yet the sickness not be removed; the sickness may be removed, yet the sin not pardoned: but if we have the comfort of peace with God, with the comfort of recovery from sickness, this makes the healing a mercy indeed. This is no encouragement to sin. If thou bring thy sins to Jesus Christ, as thy malady and misery to be cured of, and delivered from, it is well; but to come with them, as thy darlings and delight, thinking still to retain them and receive him, is a gross mistake, a miserable delusion. The great intention of the blessed Jesus in the redemption he wrought, is to separate our hearts from sin. Our Lord Jesus has perfect knowledge of all that we say within ourselves. There is a great deal of evil in sinful thoughts, which is very offensive to the Lord Jesus. Christ designed to show that his great errand to the world was, to save his people from their sins. He turned from disputing with the scribes, and spake healing to the sick man. Not only he had no more need to be carried upon his bed, but he had strength to carry it. God must be glorified in all the power that is given to do good.Jesus, knowing their thoughts - Mark says, "Jesus perceived "in his spirit" that they so reasoned." The power of searching the heart, and of knowing the thoughts of people, belongs only to God, 1 Chronicles 28:9; Romans 8:27; Revelation 2:23; Jeremiah 17:10. In claiming this, as Jesus did here, and often elsewhere, he gave clear proofs of his omniscience, John 2:24-25. CHAPTER 9

Mt 9:1-8. Healing of a Paralytic. ( = Mr 2:1-12; Lu 5:17-26).

This incident appears to follow next in order of time to the cure of the leper (Mt 8:1-4). For the exposition, see on [1239]Mr 2:1-12.

See Poole on "Matthew 9:6". And Jesus knowing their thoughts,.... Which was a clear evidence, and full demonstration of his deity; for none knows the thoughts of the heart but God; and since he knew the thoughts of men's hearts, it could be no blasphemy in him to take that to himself which belonged to God, even to forgive sins. And this, one would think, would have been sufficient to have approved himself to them as the true Messiah; since this is one of the ways of knowing the Messiah, according to the Jews, and which they made use of to discover a false one.

"Bar Coziba, (they say (g),) reigned two years and a half: he said to the Rabbins, I am the Messiah; they replied to him, it is written of the Messiah, that he is "of quick understanding, and judges", (referring to Isaiah 11:3) let us see whether this man is of quick understanding, and can make judgment, i.e. whether a man is wicked, or not, without any external proof; and when they saw he was not of quick understanding, and could not judge in this manner, they slew him.''

But now Christ needed not any testimony of men; he knew what was in the hearts of men, of which this instance is a glaring proof: hence he said,

wherefore think ye evil in your hearts? it was no evil in them to think that God only could forgive sin; but the evil was, that they thought Christ was a mere man, and ought not to have took so much upon him; and that, for so doing, he was a wicked man, and a blasphemer.

(g) T. Bab. Sanhedrim, fol. 93. 2.

And Jesus knowing their thoughts said, Wherefore think ye evil in your hearts?
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
Matthew 9:4. The power to discern the thoughts and intentions of others (comp. on Matthew 9:3) was a characteristic mark of the expected Messiah (Wetstein), was present in Jesus in virtue of His nature as the God-man, and analogous to His miraculous power.

ἱνατί] why? that is to say, ἵνα τί γένηται; Hermann, ad Vig. p. 849; Klotz, ad Devar. p. 631 f.

πονηρά] inasmuch, that is, as you regard me as a blasphemer, and that with a malicious intention; whereas the sick man, and those who carried him, were full of faith. In contrast to them is the emphatic ὑμεῖς (you people!), which, being ignored by important authorities, is deleted by Tischendorf 8.Matthew 9:4. ἐνθυμήσεις: Jesus intuitively read their thoughts as He read the mental state of the sick man.—ἵνα τί: elliptical for ἵνα τί γένηται understood = in order that what may happen, do you, etc. (vide Bäumlein, Schul. Gram., § 696, and Goodwin’s Syn., § 331).Matthew 9:4. Εἰδὼς, knowing) Besides many Greek codices, which Mill first began to notice on this passage, the Gothic version and the margin of Courcelles reads thus.—ἰδὼν[394] appears to have been introduced by some persons from Matthew 9:2. St Mark and St Luke have ἐπιγνοὺς in the parallel passages. Thus too we find ΕἸΔῺς in ch. Matthew 12:25.—ὙΜΕῖς, you) The pronoun is expressed for the sake of emphasis.[395]

[394] Lachmann reads εἰδῶς with B, Goth. Vers, and probably a. Dbc and Rec. Text read ἰδὼν. Vulg. “Cum vidisset.”—ED.

[395] Often one, whilst he is arraigning others for their sins, is sinning himself. And indeed the most heinous sins can be committed even in the heart alone.—V. g.Verse 4. - And Jesus knowing; εἰδώς (but Textus Receptus, with margin of Westcott and Hort, and of Revised Version, ἰδών, "seeing" ); parallel passages, ἐπιγνούς. The difference of form with agreement in sense points to varying translations of ידע (so Peshito, in each place). Perhaps the same cause may also account for the difference in the next words, ἐνθυμήσεις ἐνθυμεῖσθε, but in the parallel passages, διαλογίζονται, διαλογισμούς διαλογίζεσθε (cf. also ver. 8). (For similar instances of our Lord's knowledge, cf. Matthew 12:25; Luke 6:8; Luke 9:47John 2:25; cf. further, supra, Matthew 8:10, note.) Their thoughts, said, Wherefore think ye evil in your hearts? Evil (πονηρά). Does the plural point to stages in their reasoning? or is it merely used because he was addressing more than one person?
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