Vincent's Word Studies
When he was come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed him.
And, behold, there came a leper and worshipped him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean.
And Jesus put forth his hand, and touched him, saying, I will; be thou clean. And immediately his leprosy was cleansed.
And Jesus saith unto him, See thou tell no man; but go thy way, shew thyself to the priest, and offer the gift that Moses commanded, for a testimony unto them.
And when Jesus was entered into Capernaum, there came unto him a centurion, beseeching him,
And saying, Lord, my servant lieth at home sick of the palsy, grievously tormented.
See on torments, Matthew 4:24.
And Jesus saith unto him, I will come and heal him.
So A. V. and Rev. The word, however, originally means to attend, and to treat medically. The centurion uses another and stronger word, shall be healed (ἰαθήσεται). Luke, who as a physician is precise in the use of medical terms, uses both words in one verse (Luke 9:11). Jesus healed (ἰᾶτο) all who had need of treatment (θεραπείας). Still, Luke himself does not always observe the distinction. See on Luke 5:15.
The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed.
For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it.
Omitted in A. V., but very important. "I also am a man under authority," as well as thou. (Tynd., I also myself). The centurion compares the Lord's position with his own. Christ had authority over disease. The centurion also was in authority over soldiers. As the centurion had only to say to a soldier "Go!" and he went, so Christ had only to say to disease "Go!" and it would obey him.
When Jesus heard it, he marvelled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel.
And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven.
Shall sit down (ἀνακλιθήσονται)
Lit., recline. The picture is that of a banquet. Jews as well as Romans reclined at table on couches.
But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
The outer (τὸ ἐξώτερον)
The Greek order of words is very forcible. "They shall be east forth into the darkness, the outer (darkness). The picture is of an illuminated banqueting chamber, outside of which is the thick darkness of night.
And Jesus said unto the centurion, Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee. And his servant was healed in the selfsame hour.
Was healed (ἰάθη)
Note that the stronger word of the centurion (Matthew 8:8) is used here. Where Christ tends, he heals.
And when Jesus was come into Peter's house, he saw his wife's mother laid, and sick of a fever.
Sick of a fever (πυρέσουσαν)
Derived from πῦρ, fire. Our word fever comes through the German feuer.
And he touched her hand, and the fever left her: and she arose, and ministered unto them.
When the even was come, they brought unto him many that were possessed with devils: and he cast out the spirits with his word, and healed all that were sick:
That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying, Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses.
This translation is correct. The word does not mean "he took away," but "he bore," as a burden laid upon him. This passage is the corner-stone of the faith-cure theory, which claims that the atonement of Christ includes provision for bodily no less than for spiritual healing, and therefore insists on translating "took away." Matthew may be presumed to have understood the sense of the passage he was citing from Isaiah, and he could have used no word more inadequate to express his meaning, if that meaning had been that Christ took away infirmities.
Now when Jesus saw great multitudes about him, he gave commandment to depart unto the other side.
And a certain scribe came, and said unto him, Master, I will follow thee whithersoever thou goest.
And Jesus saith unto him, The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head.
Wyc. has ditches, with burrows in explanation.
Only here and in the parallel, Luke 9:58. Nests is too limited. The word, derived from σκηνή, a tent, has the more general meaning of shelter or habitation. In classical Greek it is used of an encampment. The nest is not to the bird what the hole is to the fox, a permanent dwelling-place, since the bird frequents the nest only during incubation. The Rev. retains nests, but puts lodging-places in the margin.
And another of his disciples said unto him, Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father.
But Jesus said unto him, Follow me; and let the dead bury their dead.
And when he was entered into a ship, his disciples followed him.
And, behold, there arose a great tempest in the sea, insomuch that the ship was covered with the waves: but he was asleep.
Lit., shaking. Used of an earthquake. The narrative indicates a sudden storm. Dr. Thomson ("Land and Book") says: "Such winds are not only violent, but they come down suddenly, and often when the sky is perfectly clear....To understand the causes of these sudden and violent tempests we must remember that the lake lies low - six hundred and eighty feet below the sea; that the mountainous plateau of the Jaulan rises to a considerable height, spreading backward to the wilds of the Hauran, and upward to snowy Hermon; that the water-courses have worn or washed out profound ravines and wild gorges, converging to the head of this lake; and that these act like great funnels to draw down the cold winds from the mountains."
And his disciples came to him, and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us: we perish.
And he saith unto them, Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm.
But the men marvelled, saying, What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him!
And when he was come to the other side into the country of the Gergesenes, there met him two possessed with devils, coming out of the tombs, exceeding fierce, so that no man might pass by that way.
The tombs (μνημείων)
Chambers excavated in the mountain, which would afford a shelter to the demoniac. Chandler ("Travels in Asia Minor") describes tombs with two square rooms, the lower containing the ashes, while in the upper, the friends performed funeral rites, and poured libations through a hole in the floor. Dr. Thomson ("Land and Book") thus describes the rock-cut tombs in the region between Tyre and Sidon: "They are nearly all of the same form, having a small chamber in front, and a door leading from that into the tomb, which is about six feet square, With niches on three sides for the dead." A propensity to take up the abode in the tombs is mentioned by ancient physicians as a characteristic of madmen. The Levitical uncleanness of the tombs would insure the wretches the solitude which they sought. Trench ("Notes on the Miracles") cites the following incident from Warburton ("The Crescent and the Cross"): "On descending from these heights I found myself in a cemetery whose sculptured turbans showed me that the neighboring village was Moslem. The silence of night was now broken by fierce yells and howlings, which I discovered proceeded from a naked maniac who was fighting with some wild dogs for a bone. The moment he perceived me he left his canine comrades, and bounding along with rapid strides, seized my horse's bridle, and almost forced him backward over the cliff."
Originally, difficult, hard. Hence hard to manage; intractable.
And, behold, they cried out, saying, What have we to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God? art thou come hither to torment us before the time?
And there was a good way off from them an herd of many swine feeding.
So the devils besought him, saying, If thou cast us out, suffer us to go away into the herd of swine.
And he said unto them, Go. And when they were come out, they went into the herd of swine: and, behold, the whole herd of swine ran violently down a steep place into the sea, and perished in the waters.
A steep place (τοῦ κρημνοῦ)
Much better the steep (Rev.). Not an overhanging precipice, but a steep, almost perpendicular declivity, between the base of which and the water was a narrow margin of ground, in which there was not room for the swine to recover from their headlong rush. Dr. Thomson ("Land and Book") says: "Farther south the plain becomes so broad that the herd might have recovered and recoiled from the lake." The article localizes the steep as in the vicinity of the pasture.
And they that kept them fled, and went their ways into the city, and told every thing, and what was befallen to the possessed of the devils.
And, behold, the whole city came out to meet Jesus: and when they saw him, they besought him that he would depart out of their coasts.