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Bible Commentaries
Matthew 11

Edwards' Family Bible New TestamentFamily Bible NT

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Verse 2

In prison ; Luke 3:19-20 .

Verse 3

He that should come ; the expected one-the Messiah. Though John had borne express testimony to Jesus, yet both he and his disciples may have been perplexed by erroneous ideas respecting the nature of His kingdom, and by their consequent failure to witness the fulfilment of their expectations concerning Him.

Verse 6

Not be offended in me ; not dissatisfied with my character, conduct, and claims; but shall receive me as the Saviour, the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world. John 1:29 . Many were offended because Christ did not satisfy their carnal expectations concerning their long-promised Messiah. In these words the Saviour returned to John a virtual answer to his question, yet expressed in such a form that his enemies could take no advantage of it.

Verse 7

A reed shaken ; an inconstant, unstable person.

Verse 8

Soft raiment ; effeminate, delicate clothing.

King’s houses ; the place for such persons is in the palaces of the great, not in the wilderness.

Verse 9

More than a prophet ; more distinguised and honorable than any of the Old Testament prophets, because he was the forerunner of Christ, and stood in a nearer relation to him than any of them.

Verse 10

Written ; Malachi 3:1 ; Isaiah 40:3 ; Matthew 3:3 .

Verse 11

Greater ; in dignity; more honorable in condition and employment.

Least , as a prophet or teacher under the gospel dispensation.

Is greater ; his work would be one of higher dignity and privilege than John’s, because he would stand in a still nearer relation to Christ and proclaim more fully the truths of his gospel. The work of a gospel minister is a most exalted employment; and he who faithfully performs it, is, in God’s estimation, among the most honorable of the earth.

Verse 12

From the days of John the Baptist ; from the days of his public appearance, when the kingdom of heaven, which before that had been something future, first began to come as something present.

Violence-by force ; men were strongly excited, and they pressed to hear and receive the gospel.

Verse 13

Prophesied until John ; they prophesied of the kingdom of heaven as yet to come till John, when its coming began. See above, note on verse Matthew 11:12 .

Verse 14

Elias ; the one who was foretold in the Old Testament under the name of Elijah, because he would resemble that prophet. Malachi 4:5 .

Verse 15

He that hath ears ; let every one who can, hear and understand this concerning John and the coming of the kingdom of heaven. Our Lord commonly employs these words of some doctrine or statement that requires study and thought to comprehend it.

Verse 16

Children sitting in the markets ; and imitating in their plays the transactions of life.

Verse 17

Piped unto you ; played a lively tune, as at a wedding-feast.

Mourned unto you ; played a mournful tune, as at a funeral.

Lamented ; imitated the lamentations at funerals that accompanied the playing of the minstrels, chap Matthew 9:23 . These children are wayward, and will do nothing to please their mates.

Verse 18

Neither eating nor drinking ; living very abstemiously. Though there is a great variety in the outward condition of ministers of the gospel, and in the mode of their communications with men, yet no condition and no manner of living or preaching will make the gospel universally acceptable, or lead any, without the grace of God, to embrace it.

Verse 19

Eating and drinking ; living as did other people.

They say , Behold a man gluttonous ; they found fault with both, and rejected both, like fickle, capricious children, whom nothing could please.

Wisdom is justified of her children ; right and wise ways, like those which John and the Saviour pursued, will be approved by the spiritually wise and good.

Verse 20

Upbraid ; rebuke and denounce judgments against them.

Verse 21

Chorazin-Bethsaida ; cities in Galilee which he often visited, and in which he taught and wrought miracles.

Tyre and Sidon ; commercial cities in the western part of Palestine, on the Mediterranean sea.

Sackcloth and ashes ; the signs of sorrowing penitence. The evidence which, through the grace of God, would have convinced some who are now lost, had they enjoyed it, and might have led them to repentance, utterly fails to produce these effects upon others.

Verse 23

Exalted unto heaven ; greatly distinguished by privileges.

Brought down to hell ; destroyed with an aggravated destruction.

Remained ; would not have been destroyed.

Verse 24

More tolerable ; they will be punished less severely, because they have not sinned against and rejected so much light. The higher men are raised in privileges, the lower, if they continue to abuse then, will they sink in future woe.

Verse 25

Hid these things ; not led them to perceive and embrace them, because there were the wisest and best reasons why he should not.

Wise and prudent ; in their own estimation, and so proud that they would not ask of God that wisdom which is from above.

Babes ; those who feel their dependence on God, and seek his aid. For all his dealings, however mysterious to men, God has the wisest and best of reasons. Those who love him will believe this, and rejoice in the conviction that he doeth all things well.

Verse 26

It seemed good ; because it was good, right, and best.

Verse 27

All things are delivered ; all things were by the Father committed to Christ as mediator. He is head over all things to his church, and the final judge of the living and the dead.

Reveal him ; as manifested in the person and work of the Saviour, and by his word and Spirit. None have right views of God, except those who learn his character from his Son. The course of wisdom therefore, for all who wish to know God, is to sit at the feet of Christ and learn from him.

Verse 28

Heavy - laden ; burdened with sins or sorrows of any kind.

Rest ; relief, especially inward peace.

Verse 29

None need to be miserable. By submission to Jesus Christ, trust in him, and obedience to his commands, all may be happy in life, in death, and for ever.

Bibliographical Information
Edwards, Justin. "Commentary on Matthew 11". "Edwards' Family Bible New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/fam/matthew-11.html. American Tract Society. 1851.
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