Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and you say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship.…
The Patriarch Jacob had offered sacrifice at Sychar, or Shechem (Genesis 33:20). From Mount Gerizim the six tribes had solemnly pronounced the blessings that should be on those who kept the Ten Commandments (Deuteronomy 27:12). At Shechem, Joshua before his death, had recounted to the assembled Israelites God's merciful dealings with them (Joshua 24). A temple, if not then standing, had formerly stood on Mount Gerizim. All this might seem to convey a kind of right and legality to the worship offered there. But God had chosen one place for His worship, one place only for sacrifices to be offered to Him (Deuteronomy 12:13). This place was Jerusalem. Neither length of time, nor the eminence of the worshippers, could invest any other place with the right, which God had given to Jerusalem alone.
(F. I. Dunwell, B. A.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship.