Matthew 4:17. From that time Jesus began to preach He had preached before, both to Jews and Samaritans, John 4:41; John 4:45, but from this time he began to preach publicly and statedly, and to insist on the same doctrine that John had done: and with good reason, for the repentance which John taught, still was and ever will be, the necessary preparation for that inward kingdom of heaven, or, of God, which is righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost. The phrase, however, is not only used with regard to individuals, in whom that kingdom is to be established, but also with regard to the Christian Church, the whole body of believers. In the former sense, it is opposed to repentance, by which it is preceded; in the latter, to the Mosaic dispensation. Our Lord now properly and fully entered upon his prophetic office; which consisted of three things: preaching, or making known the will of God; gathering disciples; and working miracles. The first of these he does here, and more largely chap. 5., 6., 7., and in his many parables and other discourses. The second, Matthew 4:18-22. The third, as being necessary to confirm his doctrine, on all occasions, from time to time, till his departure hence.
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