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came that He might gather into the fellowship of his Church (John xi. 52).
The manner is very noteworthy in which the Roman officer, by help of an analogy drawn from the circle of things with which he himself is most familiar, by a comparison borrowed from his own military experience,' makes easier to himself his act of faith. He knows that Christ's word, without his actual presence, will be sufficient; there is that in his own experience which assures him as much ; for, he adds, ' I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me, and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth ; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth
It is an argument from the less to the greater. I am one occupying only a subordinate place, set under authority, a subaltern, with tribunes and commanders over me. Yet, notwithstanding, those that are under me, obey me; and my word is potent with them. I have power to send them hither and thither, and they go at my bidding, so that, myself sitting still, I can yet have the things accomplished which I desire (Acts x. 8; xxiii. 23). How much more Thou ; not set, as I am, in a subordinate place, but who art as a Prince over the host of heaven, who hast Angels and spirits to obey thy word and run swiftly at thy command, canst fulfil from a distance all the good pleasure of thy will. What need, then, that Thou shouldest come to my house; only commission one of these genii of healing, who will
1 Bengel : Sapientia fidelis ex ruditate militari pulchre elucens.
? The oroatia ovpávios (Luke ii. 13; cf. Rev. xix. 14). How true a notion this indeed was, which in his simple faith the centurion had conceived for himself, we see from those words of our Lord, “Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and He shall presently give Me more than twelve legions of angels' (Matt. xxvi. 53)? Jerome (in loc.): Volens ostendere Dominum quoque non per adventum tantum corporis, sed per angelorum ministeria posse implere quod vellet. Fuller (Pisgah Sight of Palestine, vol. i. p. 109) takes it a little differently*Concluding from his own authority over his soldiers, that Christ, by a more absolute power, as Lord High Marshal of all maladies, without his personal presence, could by his bare word of command order any disease to march or retreat at his pleasure.'
execute speedily the errand of grace on which Thou shalt send him.'He contemplates the relation of Christ to the spiritual kingdom in an aspect as original as it is grand. The Lord appears to him as the true Cæsar and Imperator, the highest over the hierarchy, pot of earth, but of heaven (Col. i. 16).
In all this there was so wonderful a union of faith and humility, that it is nothing strange to read that the Lord Himself was filled with admiration : When Jesus heard it, He marvelled," and said to them that followed, Verily, I
· Severus (in Cramer, Catena): Ei påp šyus otpatLÁTHS úv, kai inė εξουσίαν βασιλέως τελών, τοις δορυφόροις εντέλλομαι, πως ου μάλλον αυτός ο τών άνω και αγγελικών δυνάμεων ποιητής, και θέλεις έρείς και yevioerat; and Augustine (Enarr. in P8. xlvi. 9, and Serm. lxii. 2): Si ergo ego, inquit, homo sub potestate, jubendi habeo potestatem, quid tu possis, cui omnes serviunt potestates ? And Bernard more than once urges this as a singular feature of his humility; thus Ep. cccxcii. : O prudens et vere corde humilis anima! dicturus quod prælatus esset militibus, repressit extollentiam confessione subjectionis : immo præmisit subjectionem, ut pluris sibi esset quod suberat, quam quod præerat; and beautifully, De Off: Episc. 8: Non jactabat potestatem, quam nec solam protulit, nec priorem. . . . . Præmissa siquidem est humilitas, ne altitudo præcipitet. Nec enim locum invenit arrogantia, ubi tam clarum humilitatis insigne præcesserat. Such explanation appears preferable to theirs who make ävt pwrog itò ikovoiav, a man in authority. Rettig (Theol. Stud. u. Krit. vol. xi. p. 472), reading with Lachmann, úvo. ito ičovo. Tuggópevoç (which last word, however, sh ould not have found place in the text), has an ingenious but untenable explanation in this sense. The Auct. Oper. Imperf. interprets rightly ivbpw Tos U TO igovoinr, a man in a subordinate position ; but then will not allow, nay rather expressly denies, that this is a comparison by way of contrast, which the centurion is drawing,—that he is magnifying the Lord's highest place by comparing it with his own only subordinate, but that rather he is in all things likening the one to the other: “As I am under worldly authorities, and yet have those whom I may send, so Thou, albeit under thine heavenly Father, hast yet a heavenly host at thy bidding.' (Ego sum homo sub potestate alterius, tamen habeo potestatem jubendi eis qui sub me sunt. Nec enim impedior jubere minores, propter quod ipse sum sub majoribus ; sed ab illis quidem jubeor, sub quibus sum; illis autem jubeo, qui sub me sunt: sic et tu, quamvis sub potestate Patris sis, secundum quod homo es, habes tamen potestatem jubendi angelis tuis, nec impediris jubere inferioribus, propter quod ipse habes superiorem.) This interpretation, though capable of a fair meaning, probably expresses the Arian tendencies of the author.
? But since all wonder properly so called, arises from the meeting with something unexpected and hitherto unknown, how could the Lord, to
say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in
whom all things were known, be said to marvel ? To this some have
that according to his human nature He might have been ignorant of some things, seems to threaten a Nestorian severance of the Person of Christ. But the whole question of the communicatio idioinatum, with its precipices on either side, is one of the hardest in the whole domain of theology. See Aquinas, Sum. Theol. 3*, qu. 15, art. 8 ; and Gerhard, Locc. Theoll. iv. 2,4.
i Augustine : In olivâ non inveni, quod inveni in oleastro. Ergo oliva superbiens præcidatur; oleaster humilis inseratur. Vide inserentem, vide præcidentem. Cf. In Joh. tract. xvi. ad finem.
2 Augustine : Alienigenæ carne, domestici corde.
(Matt. xxi. 43); because of their unbelief, they, the natural branches of the olive tree, should be broken off, and in their room the wild olive should be graffed in (Rom. xi. 17-24; Matt. iii. 9).
* And Jesus said unto the centurion, or to him in his messengers, 'Go thy way, and as thou hast believed,' so be it done unto thee. And his servant was heale in the selfsame hour;'-not merely was there a remission of the strength of the disease, but it left him altogether (John iv. 52; Matt. viii. 15). There is a certain difficulty in defining the exact character of the complaint from which he was thus graciously delivered. In St. Matthew it is described as ‘palsy;' with which the 'grievously tormented' which immediately follows, seems not altogether to agree, nor yet the report in St. Luke, that he was ready to die;' since palsy in itself neither brings with it violent paroxysms of pain, nor is it in its nature mortal. But paralysis with contraction of the joints is accompanied with intense suffering, and, when united, as it much oftener is in the hot climates of the East and of Africa than among us, with tetanus, both grievously torments,' and rapidly brings on dissolution.”
1 Bernard (Serm. iii. De Anima): Oleum misericordiæ in vase fiduciæ ponit.
2 At · Macc. ix. 55, 56, it is said of Alcimus, who was taken with a palsy,' that he died presently with great torment' (uerà Bagávov peyalns
Orivūg Baoavisourvuç here ; cf. Winer, Realwörterbuch, s. v. Paralytische). In St. Matthew and St. Mark these paralytics are always napadurikoi, in St. Luke's Gospel, as in the Acts, TapaleAvuóvoi.
12. THE DEMONIAC IN THE SYNAGOGUE OF
MARK i. 23-27; LUKE iv. 33-36.
\HE healing of this demoniac, the second miracle of the
kind which the Evangelists record at any length, may not offer so much remarkable as some similar works, but not the less has its own special points of interest. What distinguishes it the most, although finding parallels elsewhere (see Mark i. 34; Matt. viii. 29), is the testimony which the evil spirit bears to Christ, and his refusal to accept it. This history thus stands in very instructive relation with another in the Acts (xvi. 16-18). There in like manner, a damsel possessed with a spirit of divination bears witness to Paui and his company, * These men are the servants of the most high God, which show unto us the way of salvation;' and the servant there will, as little as toe Master here, endure that hell should bear witness to heaven, the kingdom of darkness to the kingdom of light, and commands with power the evil spirit to come out.
Our Lord was teaching, as was his wont upon a Sabbath (cf. Luke iv. 16; Acts xiii. 14, 15), in the synagogue of Capernaum ; and the people now, as on other occasions (see Matt. vii. 29), 'were astonished at his doctrine, for his word was with power.' But He was not mighty in word only, but also in work; and it was ordained by the providence of his Heavenly Father, that the opportunity should here be offered Him for confirming his word with signs following. There