Matthew 26

Everlasting, punishment,—life eternal. The duration of the happiness of the righteous and of the misery of the wicked, is, in the original, expressed by the same word; and language has no stronger term with which to indicate limitless duration.

Passover; a feast, celebrated by the Jews for one week, commencing at the 15th of their month Nisan, which was early in the spring. It was instituted to commemorate the passing over of the dwellings of the Israelites by the angel sent to destroy the first born among the Egyptians. (Ex. 12:3-17.)

Bethany; a small village near Jerusalem, where Lazarus resided,—The leper; that is, so designated,— probably one whom our Savior had cured of leprosy.

Alabaster; a species of stone resembling marble.—Ointment; a fragrant oil.

According to the customs of the Jews, it was a suitable preparation, though not so intended by Mary.

Thirty pieces of silver. This sum is usually estimated at between fifteen and twenty dollars. The value of money was, however, so very different then from what it now is, that it is impossible to estimate with accuracy the real value of the bribe. If labor was then but a penny a day, (Matt. 20:2,)—the word penny designating, as it does in that case, a Roman coin of about the size of an English sixpence, or an American dime,—and fall other things were in proportion,—fifteen dollars, in those days, might have been equal to fifty or one hundred now.

Sought opportunity. They did not dare to take him openly, by day, for fear of the people; and at night, he was accustomed to retire to places which were unknown to the persons whom they wished to send, to arrest him.

Feast of unleavened bread. During the eight days set apart for the solemnities connected with the celebration of the passover, bread made without leaven was to be used, in commemoration of the haste and confusion attending the flight from Egypt, when there was no time for the proper preparation of the bread (Ex. 12:33, 34, 13:5-10.)

Thou hast said; it is so.

The new testament; the new covenant in the gospel. The Mosaic dispensation was the old covenant.—Remission of sins; release both from the power and from the penalties of sin.

Gethsemane; a garden or grove on the western declivity of the Mount of Olives.

Sons of of Zebedee; James and John.

These manifestations of suffering indicate something mysterious and peculiar in the mental anguish thus expressed. The nature of it is veiled, in a great measure, from our view; but it has been always supposed by the Christian church, that here commenced those sufferings by which the dying Redeemer made expiation for human sin.

It is shown, in a very striking manner, how entirely human was the nature with which the Divine Word was clothed, in becoming flesh, (John 1:14,) by the strong desire of the sufferer to relieve the sense of loneliness and terror that oppressed him, on this dreadful night, by the feeling that friends were near, watching against the impending danger, though he well knew that it was a danger which there was no hope or possibility of averting. To find, in the mere presence and sympathy of friends, an illusion of safety, which beguiles and soothes the heart, while the reason sees too clearly that this presence and sympathy can be of no real avail, is peculiarly and distinctively human. And when we consider thus the nature of the support which the vigilant interest of his friends would have afforded the solitary sufferer, a deep and melancholy meaning is imparted to the gentle reproach, "Could ye not watch with me one hour?"

Kiss; according to the customary mode of salutation.

One of them; Peter. (John 18:10.) It is remarkable that any of the disciples of Jesus should go armed, though it was not an uncommon practice among the Jews in their day. Robbers infested the passes in the neighborhood of Jerusalem.

Were assembled; for preliminary consultation and the examination of the prisoner. The regular meeting of the council took place some hours afterwards, in the morning, (27:1, Luke 22:66,) and was held probably in the temple. (27:5.)

None; none that agreed together, so that they could found a conviction upon their testimony.

This was a false interpretation put upon his language, as recorded John 2:19. That they knew very well what the Savior's real meaning was, is rendered probable from their acknowledgment, in the next chapter, v. 63.

They; the soldiers and attendants who had the prisoner in charge.

Without; that is, without that part of the hall, appropriated to the priests and the prisoner, but still in the same apartment, as appears from Luke 22:55, 61.

Thy speech. They meant that his provincial dialect betrayed him to be a Galilean.

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