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Verses 27-28

Matthew 12:27-28. And if I by Beelzebub, &c. This is the second argument made use of by Jesus for confuting the calumny of the Pharisees; by whom do your children cast them out? As if he had said, “For the same reason that you attribute my miracles to the devil, you may attribute all the miracles that ever were wrought in the world to the devil, and particularly the miracles of your own prophets which, nevertheless, you acknowledge to be divine.” To this purpose Dr. Chandler paraphrases the verse, “Ye do not impute the miracles of your prophets to Beelzebub, but on the evidence of these miracles ye receive them as the messengers of God. Nevertheless, ye reject me, who work greater and more numerous miracles than they, and impute them to the power of evil spirits. Is this conduct of a piece? Wherefore these prophets shall be your judges; they shall condemn you.” It seems, however, more probable that, by your children, is meant your disciples, or your countrymen in general, for “that many of the Jews did, at this time, attempt to cast out devils, is plain from Mark 9:38; Luke 9:49; Acts 19:13; Josephus, Antiq., Matthew 8:2. Calvin thinks that God conferred power of this kind on some particular persons among the Jews anciently, that by thus proving his presence among them he might retain the nation in the faith of his covenant; and that the people, having experienced God’s power in those instances, came foolishly to institute for themselves the office of an exorcist. Agreeably to this it may be observed, that our Lord’s argument does not require that the demons were actually expelled by these exorcists. It is sufficient that the Jews thought they were expelled, and did not find fault with those pretended miracles, as they did with Christ’s real ones.” Therefore they shall be your judges Ask them, if Satan will cast out Satan; let even them be judges in this matter. And they shall convict you of obstinacy and partiality, who impute that in me to Beelzebub, which in them you impute to God. But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God As it is evident, and you cannot reasonably deny that I do; then the kingdom of God is come nigh unto you The time is certainly come which God has appointed for taking the power out of the hands of the devil, in order that he may himself rule, both in the bodies and souls of men. The word εφθασεν , rendered is come, implies, is come unawares; before you expected it. In other words, the Messiah’s kingdom is come, and you ought with joy to enter it.

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