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e accession of Nerva, it seems that he returned to Ephesus, where he wrote his Gospel and Epistles, and where he ed in the third year of the emperor Trajan, when he must have been about one hundred years of age. The time at which St. John wrote his Gospel has been very much disputed. The passage (ch. v. 3), “ Now there 18 Jerusalem by the sheepmarket, a pool, called in the Hebrew tongue Bethesda, having five porches," has been ought to require that it should have been written before, though not long before, the destruction of Jerusalem ; beise if that event had taken place, he would have been more likely to have said, “there was a pool," than " there is 2001.” Other arguments have been found in support of this opinion; but the passage adduced does not warrant that much stress should be laid on a single word which it contains ; and the pool might, and probably did subsist even er the city had been overthrown. Very powerful affirmative arguments might also be adduced for the more general nion, that this Gospel was written by St. John towards the end of his life, after his return to Ephesus from his exile Patmos. This view is supported by much internal evidence; and, in conformity with it, the great majority of emiit writers incline to fix its date about the year 97 or 98. The intimations preserved by the early fathers, and which appear very probable in themselves, inform us that the d apostle was induced to write his Gospel at the urgent solicitations of the churches in Asia Minor, with the view uverturning the errors which were then promulgated by Cerinthus, the Nicolaitans, and others. As these errors e, for the most part, founded on mistaken notions of the real nature, character, and office of Jesus Christ, he selected 1 the history and discourses of his Lord those passages which bore most strongly upon these subjects, and which led, by the exhibition of correct views, to overthrow the existing errors, and establish a rule of faith for the future, hose points which had been brought into dispute. For the latter object, many particulars are stated which pers should not be considered as directed against the tenets of particular heretics. As the Gospel contains so much rmation which the other Evangelists do not afford, and as many particulars are added, even in those parts which e circumstances also recorded by the other Evangelists, it has been thought that it was part of John's object to ish a supplementary Gospel, supplying soine events and discourses which they had omitted, and the preservation hich he was ultimately led to consider of importance. This object is very compatible with the other, in so far I accomplishing it, he would naturally be directed to select, from that multitude of non-recorded facts and sayings hich he speaks (ch. xxi. 25), those preferably, which tended most to dissipate the errors which were then arising. may well suppose, in conformity with the tradition of the fathers, that the churches of Asia having heard the vene
apostle relate numerous circumstances which they found not in the existing Gospels, failed not to urge upon the importance of giving to the church, for an abiding possession, those records by which they had themselves much instructed and comforted. ise 21. “ I am not."— This answer to the question, “ Art thou Elias ? " may at first view seem opposed to our Lord's ration that John the Baptist was the Elias which was to come (Matt. xi. 14 ; xvii. 12, 13). But the Jews expected Elias would come in his own proper person, and with this view the present question was asked ; and his answer in egative, does not at all apply to our Saviour's assertion that John was the Elias foretold by the prophets-that is, phet who had come in the spirit and power of Elias. (See the note on Mark ix. 12.) hat prophet.”—Probably the prophet, like unto himself, whom Moses had foretold that the Lord would send t. xviii. 5). We know that the Messiah was denoted in this prediction ; but probably the Jews did not so under.it. It has however been supposed that Jeremiah is intended, as it was believed by the Jews that he would rise the dead, and, among other things, restore to them the ark, and the pot of manna, which he was supposed to concealed, to preserve them from the Babylonians. Lightfoot, however, has shown that the Jews believed that e prophets would rise again at the coming of the Messiah ; and considers that the question refers to this beliet, as the same meaning as that contained in one of the opinions concerning Christ,—“Of others (it was said], that f the old prophets was risen again.” (Luke ix. 8.)
“ Bethabara.”—This name means “ House of Passage,” whence it has been supposed to deuote the spot where sraelites passed the Jordan, under Joshua. Origen says, that this place, on the banks of the Jordan, continued
time to be pointed out: and Jerome says the same; to which he adds, that it was usual for believers to be bapat this spot, in memory of John's baptisin. The place is not now known.
* The Lamb of God."- So called in evident allusion to the victim slain, under the Law, for the atonement of sin. g the Arabians, Persians, and others, it has been usual to bestow similar titles on persons eminently distinguished eir piety or valour. Thus, the khalif Ali, who is regarded by the Sheah sect of Mohammedans as a sort of Mesbears the title of the “ Lion of God.” It is interesting to learn (from Morier) how this title, given to Christ, ca Persian mind, as contrasted to that assigned to Ali. “On reading the passage where our Saviour is called Lamb of God,' the moollahs scorned and ridiculed the simile, as if exulting in the superior designation of Ali, who ed Sheer Khoda, the · Lion of God.' But Mirza Baba observed to them, * The lion is an unclean beast; he preys carcases, and you are not allowed to wear his skin, because it is impure; he is destructive, fierce, and man's ". The lamb, on the contrary, is every way halal (lawful): you eat its fesh, you wear its skin on your head, i no harm, and is an animal beloved. Whether is it best then to say, the Lamb of God, or the · Lion of
3 And when they wanted wine, the moist turneth water into wine, 12 departeth into
ther of Jesus saith unto him, They have no rernaum, and to Jerusalem, 14 where he purg
winc. the temple of buyers and sellers. 19 He fore- 4 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, what 'th his deaih and resurrection. 23 Many be- have I to do with thee? mine hour is not od because of his miracles, but he would not t himself with them.
5 His mother saith unto the servants, the third day there was a marriage in Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it. - of Galilee; and the mother of Jesus 6 And there were set there six waterpots ere:
of stone, after the manner of the purifying and both Jesus was called, and his dis- of the Jews, containing two or three firkins is to the marriage.
7 Jesus saith unto them, Fill the water- / poured out the changers' money, and overpots with water. And they filled them up threw the tables ; to the brim.
16 And said unto them that sold doves, 8 And he saith unto them, Draw out Take these things hence; make not my Fa now, and bear unto the governor of the ther's house an house of merchandise. feast. And they bare it.
17 And his disciples remembered that it 9 When the ruler of the feast had tasted was written, The zeal of thine house haib the water that was made wine, and knew not caten me up. whence it was: (but the servants which 18 & Then answered the Jews and said drew the water knew;) the governor of the unto him, What sign shewest thou unto us feast called the bridegroom,
seeing that thou doest these things? 10 And saith unto him, Every man at 19 Jesus answered and said unto them. the beginning doth set forth good wine; Destroy this temple, and in three days! and when men have well drunk, then that will raise it up. which is worse: but thou hast kept the good 20 Then said the Jews, Forty and sit wine until now.
years was this temple in building, and wilt 11 This beginning of miracles did Jesus ihou rear it up in three days? in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth 21 But he spake of the temple of his his glory; and his disciples believed on body. him.
22 When therefore he was risen from the 12 | After this he went down to Caper- dead, his disciples remembered that he had naum, he, and his mother, and his brethren, said this unto them; and they believed the and his disciples: and they continued there Scripture, and the word which Jesus had not many days.
said. 13 And the Jews' Passover was at hand, 23 Now when he was in Jerusalem at and Jesus went up to Jerusalem,
the Passover, in the feast day, many le14 And found in the temple those that lieved in his name, when they saw the misold oxen and sheep and doves, and the racles which he did. changers of money sitting :
24 But Jesus did not commit himself 15 And when he had made a scourge of unto them, because he knew all men, small cords, he drove them all out of the 25 And needed not that any should tes: temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and tify of man: for he knew what was in man.
Verse 1. " Cana of Galilee."— The adjunct, “of Galilee," distinguishes this Cana from another in the tribe of Aster not far from Sidon. The Cana of the text still subsists as a very neat village, about eight miles to the north of Nazzreth. It is pleasantly situated upon the declivity of a hill, facing the south-east: it enjoys the blessing of a copious spring, and is surrounded with plantations of the olive and other fruit trees. The spring is alleged, with sufficiel probability, to be that which supplied the water that was turned into wine ; for which reason pilgrims usually stap aa! drink from it. This spring is about a quarter of a mile from the village. At Cana there is a neat Greek chures, and the ruins of another, which was built by the Empress Helena over the spot where the marriage feast was supposed to have been held. In walking among the ruins of this church, Dr. Clarke says, “We saw large massy stone puts. aeswering the description given of the ancient vessels of the country, not preserved or exhibited as relies, but lying alcat disregarded by the present inhabitants as antiquities with whose original use they were not acquainted. Frui tie appearance, and the number of them, it was quite evident that a practice of keeping water in large stone pots, eaca holding from eighteen to twenty-seven gallons, was once common in the country.” It would seem, however, that thex pots have not been wholly neglected, as Dr. Clarke supposed ; for Dr. Richardson, on visiting the modern Greek church. says, “ Here we were shown an old stone pot, of the compact limestone of the country, which, the hierophant informe us, is one of the original pots which contained the water which underwent this miraculous change."
2. “ His disciples."— At present these appear to have been Philip, Peter, Andrew, John (supposing him the “otke: disciple”), and Nathanael. We may observe, by the way, that Nathanael has been generally supposed the same pers) with the apostle whose name elsewhere occurs as Bartholomew.
3. “ The mother of Jesus.”— As Joseph was not present, and is never mentioned, by any of the Evangelists, as beira alive after the commencement of our Lord's ministry, it is something more than probable that he was previously dead. At all events, he certainly was not alive at the conclusion of that ministry, as otherwise Mary's crucified Son' wouit scarcely have consigned her to the care of John.
4. “ Woman.”—This style of address was by no means one of disrespect, nor is it now in the East. It was rather the contrary, and was thus used in addressing females of the very first distinction, as is sufficiently shown by Faria ancient writers. Jesus addresses his mother in the same manner on another occasion, when his respect and tenderness was beyond all question. (Ch. xix. 26.)
8. “ The governor of the seast.”—The appointment of this officer, for regulating their more public entertainments. was very possibly derived from the Greeks. At least the Greeks had such an officer; who, however, is not mentioned in the sacred or apocryphal writings until after the Jews had become well acquainted with the Greeks, particula, those of Egypt. This officer was called the symposiar ch by the Greeks. He was one of the guests, distinguished in his agreeable manners and pleasant address, and who could bear drink without becoming intoxicated. His duty was to preside over the feast, to prevent disorder, and while he promoted hilarity, to discourage intemperance. He gave particular attention to the drinking, and noted how the several guests were affected by their wine; and when he observed that some were more liable to be disordered by it than others, he mixed more water with their wine, to keep them equally sober with the rest of the company. Thus the symposiarch took care that none should be forced to drink against his will; and also that, although there was a general liberty of drinking, none should, even by his own choice, become intoxicated. Such seem to have been also the offices of this “governor of the feast ; ” and, in accordance with it, we observe that the wine was taken to him to taste before it was presented to the guests. The existence of such an officer among the Jews is rendered unquestionable by the following, in the apocryphal book of Ecclesiasticus: " If thou be made the master of a feast, lift not thyself up, but be among them as one of the rest ; take diligent care of them, and so sit down. And when thou hast done all thine office, take thy place that thou mayest be merry with them, and receive a crown for the well ordering of the feast.” (ch. xxxii. 1.) Theophylact's remark'here is useful as a further illustration. " That no one might suspect that their taste was so vitiated by excess as to imagine water to be wine. our Saviour directs it to be tasted by the governor of the feast, who certainly was suber, for those who on such occasions are entrusted with this office, observe the strictest sobriety, that every thing may, by their orders, be conducted with regularity and decency.
20. “ Forty and six years was this temple in building.”—The Temple of Solomon was seven years in building; and that of Zerublabel, after the captivity, was not completed until twenty years had elapsed. This therefore must necessarily apply to the temple as restored and improved in and before the time of Christ; which restoration and improvement was accomplished, slowly, taking down particular parts in succession, and rebuilding them before others were touched. This work was begun by Herod the Great, sixteen years before the birth of Christ; consequently, the present time, being thirty years later, completed the forty-six years here mentioned. Perhaps the text would be better rendered “ Forty and six
years this temple has been in building." For the works of the temple were not completed until some years later, under llerod Agrippa, the grandson of lerud the Great.
10 Jesus answered and said unto him,
Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest i Christ teacheth Nicodemus the necessity of regeneration. 14 Of faith in his death. 16 The great
not these things? love of God touards the world. 18 Condemnution 11 Verily, verily, I say unto thee, We for unbelief. 23 The buptism, witness, and duc- speak that we do know, and testify that we trine of John concerning Christ.
have seen; and ye
receive not our witness. THERE was a man of the Pharisees, named 12 If I have told you earthly things, and Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews:
ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell 2 The same came to Jesus by night, and you of heavenly things? said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou 13 And no man hath ascended up to heaart a teacher come from God: for no man ven, but he that came down from heaven, can do these miracles that thou doest, ex- even the Son of man which is in heaven. cept God be with him.
14 1 And as Moses lifted up the serpent 3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Ve- in the wilderness, even so must the Son of rily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man man be lifted
up: be born again, he cannot see the kingdom 15 That whosoever believeth in him should of God.
not perish, but have eternal life. 4 Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a 16 ( -For God so loved the world, that man be born when he is old ? can he enter he gave his only begotten Son, that whosothe second time into his mother's womb, and ever believeth in him should not perish, but be born?
have everlasting life. 5 Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say 17 'For God sent not his Son into the unto thec, Except a man be born of water | world to condemn the world; but that the and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the world through him might be saved. kingdom of God.
18 | He that believeth on him is not con6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; demned: but he that believeth not is conand that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. demned already, because he hath not be
7 Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye lieved in the name of the only begotten Son must be born again.
of God. 8 The wind bloweth where it listeth, and 19 And this is the condemnation, that thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst light is come into the world, and men loved not tell whence it cometh, and whither it darkness rather than light, because their goeth: so is every one that is born of the deeds were evil. Spirit.
20 For every one that doeth evil hateth 9 Nicodemus answered and said unto him, the light, neither cometh to the light, lest How can these things be?
his deeds should be 'reproved. 1 Or, from above. 2 Or, from above.
5 Chap. 12, 47. * Clap. 1. 4.
3 Num, 21. 9.
* 1 John 4. 9.
7 Or, discovered.
21 But he that docth truth cometh to the 29 He that hath the bride is the bridelight, that his deeds may be made manifest, groom : but the friend of the bridegroom, that they are wrought in God.
which standeth and heareth him, rejoiceth 22 After these things came Jesus and greatly because of the bridegroom's voice: his disciples into the land of Judæa; and this my joy therefore is fulfilled. there he tarried with them, and baptized. 30 He must increase, but I must de
23 | And John also was baptizing in crease. Ænon near Salim, because there was much 31 He that cometh from above is abore water there: and they came, and were bap- all: he that is of the earth is earthly, and tized.
speaketh of the earth: he that cometh from 24 For John was not yet cast into prison. heaven is above all.
25 q Then there arose a question between 32 And what he hath scen and heard, some of John's disciples and the Jews about that he testifieth; and no man receiveth his purifying
testimony. 26 And they came unto John, and said 33 He that hath received his testimony unto him, Rabbi, he that was with thee be. 13hath set to his seal that God is true. yond Jordan, "to whom thou barest witness, 34 For he whom God hath sent speaketh behold, the same baptizeth, and all men come the words of God: for God giveth not the to him.
Spirit by measure unto him. 27 John answered and said, "A man can 35 "The Father loveth the Son, and hath "receive nothing, except it be given him given all things into his hand. from heaven.
36 "He that believeth on the Son hath 28 Ye yourselves bear me witness, that I everlasting life: and he that believeth not said, "I am not the Christ, but that I am the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of sent before him.
God abideth on him. 8 Chap. 4. 2. ° Clap. 1. 7, 34. 11 Or, take unto himself. 18 Chap. 1, 20.
1 Matt. 11.27
10 lleb. 5. 4.
13 Rom. 3. 4.
15 lab. 2. 4.
I John 5. 10.
Verse 3. “ Born again."-This form of expression, and the idea involved, is not unknown in the East. So Mr. Roberts, “When a Brahmin youth has the sacred string put on him for the first time, he is said to be born again ; but when put on the second time, Iru-purappāli, he is twice born: it is to him the second birth, and he can now perform all the ceremonies of his religion.” (See also the Institutes of Menu,' ch. ii. 146.). It is still more to the purpose, to find that the Jews themselves considered one who from heathenism had been made a proselyte, by circumcision, baptism, and sacrifice, as being born anew. It was their saying, that “when a man is made a proselyte, he is like a new-born infant.” This has been thought to throw some light on verse 10, where Christ says, " Art thou a master in Israel, and knowest not these things ? "- that is, what being “ born again" meant. Interpreters, however, differ in esplaining to what our Lord may be supposed in this to refer. So complete, in their view, was this new birth, that all former ties of nature became extinct, to such an extent, indeed, that it was held to be lawful for a proselyte to marry his own mother or daughter; although, from a regard to decency, this was not practically allowed.
23. “Ænon near Salim."—Neither Anon nor Salim are known with any certainty. As to Anon, the Syriac and Persian versions read it Ain-yon, “ the dove's fountain ;” and the Arabic makes it “the fountain of Nun.” It seems, indeed, that, whether this Ænon were a town or river, it had its name from a fountain near it, or was itself a fountain Salim is as difficult to distinguish; and it is hy no means clear that we can identify it with the “Shalem" of Gen. xxiii. 18, or the “Shalim” of i Sam. x. 4. Jerome places Ænon, where John baptized, at eight miles from Scythopolis, to the south, and near to Salim and the Jordan. Salim itself, he places at the same distance from Scythopolis. 29. " The friend of the bridegroom."-See the note on Judges xv. 20. CHAPTER IV.
4 And he must needs go through Samaria. 5 Then cometh he to a city of Samaria
, i Christ talketh with a woman of Samaria, and re
vealeth himself unto her. 27 vis disciples marrel. which is called Sychar, near to the parcel of 31 He declareth to them his zeal to God's glory.
ground 'that Jacob gave to his son Joseph. 39 Many Samaritans believe on him. 43 He de- 6 Now Jacob's well was there. Jesus parteth'into Galilee, and healeth the ruler's son therefore, being wearied with his journey, that Icy sick at Capernaum.
sat thus on the well: and it was about the WHEN therefore the Lord knew how the sixth hour. Pharisees had heard that Jesus made and 7 There cometh a woman of Samaria to baptized more disciples than John,
draw water: Jesus saith unto her, Give me 2 (Though Jesus himself baptized not, to drink. but his disciples,)
8 (For his disciples were gone away unto 3. He left Judæa, and departed again into the city to buy meat.) Galilee.
9 Then saith the woman of Samaria unto
1 Gen. 33. 19, and 48. 22. Josh. 24. 32.
him, How is it that thou, being a Jew, 13 Jesus answered and said unto her, askest drink of me, which am a woman of Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst Samaria? for the Jews have no dealings again : with the Samaritans.
14 But whosoever drinketh of the water 10 Jesus answered and said unto her, If that I shall give him shall never thirst; but thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is the water that I shall give him shall be in that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou him a well of water springing up into everwouldest have asked of him, and he would lasting life. have given thee living water.
15 The woman saith unto him, Sir, give 11 The woman saith unto him, Sir, thou me this water, that I thirst not, neither come hast nothing to draw with, and the well is hither to draw. deep: from whence then hast thou that living 16 Jesus saith unto her, Go, call thy huswater?
band, and come hither. 12 Art thou greater than our father Ja- 17 The woman answered and said, I have is cob, which gave us the well, and drank no husband. Jesus said unto her, Thou
thereof himself, and his children, and his hast well said, I have no husband : cattle?
18 For thou hast had five husbands; and