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Verses 15-17

Matthew 21:15-17. When the chief priests, &c., saw the wonderful things he did The undeniable and astonishing miracles which he performed, and the children crying in the temple, and continuing the song which the multitude had begun, Hosanna to the son of David, they were sore displeased Inwardly vexed and filled with indignation. The works that Christ did recommended themselves to every man’s conscience: if they had any sense, they could not but own the miracle of them; and if any good-nature, they could not but be in love with the mercy of them; yet, because they were resolved to oppose him, even for these works they envied and hated him. And said, Hearest thou what these (the children) say? Insinuating that it was his duty to stop their mouths, by refusing the praises which they offered without understanding what they said. Jesus saith, Yea; have ye never read Are you unacquainted with the Scriptures? You, that want the people to regard you as the great teachers of God’s law? Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast perfected praise These words are quoted out of the eighth Psalm, and imply that, “though all men should be silent, God has no need of other heralds to proclaim his praise than infants, who hang at their mothers’ breasts; because, notwithstanding they be dumb, the admirable providence of God, conspicuous in their preservation, is equal to the loudest and sublimest eloquence. And, by applying these words to the case in hand, Jesus signified that the meanest of God’s works are so formed as to declare the greatness of his perfections; that as the Father does not refuse the praise which arises from the least of his creatures, so the Son did not disdain the praise which was offered him by children. In the present instance their praise was peculiarly acceptable, because it implied that his miracles were exceedingly illustrious, inasmuch as they led minds wherein there was nothing but the dawnings of reason, to acknowledge his mission. The Messiah’s praise, therefore, might, with remarkable propriety, be said, on this occasion, to have been perfected out of the mouths of babes and sucklings.” Macknight. But see the note on Psalms 8:2; where the psalmist’s words, here referred to, are explained at large. And he left them Namely, when the evening was come, both in prudence, lest they should have seized him before his hour was come, and in justice, because they had forfeited the favour of his presence: he left them as incorrigible. And went out of the city Privately, with none to attend him but the twelve; to Bethany Where the resurrection of Lazarus had procured him friends, among whom he was always in safety.

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