|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
12:27-33 The sin of our souls was the troubled of Christ's soul, when he undertook to redeem and save us, and to make his soul an offering for our sin. Christ was willing to suffer, yet prayed to be saved from suffering. Prayer against trouble may well agree with patience under it, and submission to the will of God in it. Our Lord Jesus undertook to satisfy God's injured honour, and he did it by humbling himself. The voice of the Father from heaven, which had declared him to be his beloved Son, at his baptism, and when he was transfigured, was heard proclaiming that He had both glorified his name, and would glorify it. Christ, reconciling the world to God by the merit of his death, broke the power of death, and cast out Satan as a destroyer. Christ, bringing the world to God by the doctrine of his cross, broke the power of sin, and cast out Satan as a deceiver. The soul that was at a distance from Christ, is brought to love him and trust him. Jesus was now going to heaven, and he would draw men's hearts to him thither. There is power in the death of Christ to draw souls to him. We have heard from the gospel that which exalts free grace, and we have heard also that which enjoins duty; we must from the heart embrace both, and not separate them.
Verses 31-36. - 5. The judgment of this world. Verse 31. - Still more emphatically does Christ expound the heavenly voice, and vindicate for himself the most solemn position with reference to the world and its prince. The" world," or humanity evolving itself to the highest form of a complicated civilization, was present to him far more vividly than when the tempter showed him all the kingdoms of the world and the glory of them. Instead of holding them in royal fee of the devil, and of compelling them to do his bidding, he declares that his hour, which had come, was an hour of judicial condemnation for the world. The corruption of the world, the radical injury done to human nature, starts out on its beautiful and decorated front like the leprosy did on the face of Naaman. Now is a judgment of the world. Observe, not κρίσις. This is compatible with the statements of John 3:17-19, and not inconsistent with the frequent references in John 5. to the "last day." Because John gives prominence to the great principles of judgment, and implies that the books of remembrance and condemnation are written all over indelibly by the hand of the world itself, there is no proof that the Lord (in John) says nothing of the great catastrophic judgments of which the synoptic Gospels preserve the prophecy. Our Lord has rather revealed (according to John) the principles which make the judgment of the great day credible. What a man has become at any epoch of his existence, what a nation is about at any crisis of its history, whatsoever act represents the spirit of the whole world, is in each case the judgment which God, by his providence, passes upon him or it. Still more impressively with a second, Now, he adds, shall the prince of this world be cast out. The phrase, "archon of this world," is a well-known later Hebraic phrase for "the ruler of the darkness of this world," the shir-olam of the rabbinical books, the angel of death, to whom was entrusted the rulership of the world outside of the sacred family. Christ declares that his own hour, in which the world and its prince would seem to be triumphant, would be the hour when he should be cast out of earth as he had been already cast out of heaven. This expulsion and destruction of the power and works of the devil was one great end assigned to the manifestation of the Son of God (1 John 3:8). It is important, however, to notice the difference of tenses. "Now is the judgment of this world," - this is the immediate result of his death; "Now shall the prince of this world be east out" describes the gradual victory of truth, which is pursued more explicitly in the next verse.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Now is the judgment of this world,.... That is, in a very short time will be the judgment either of the Jewish world, when that shall be reproved, convinced, and condemned for their sin of rejecting Christ, and crucifying him, by the Spirit, in the ministration of the Gospel; and they still continuing in their impenitence and unbelief, in process of time wrath will come upon them, upon their nation, city, and temple, to the uttermost; or of the Gentile world, when there shall be a discrimination, and separation made in it, of the chosen of God, who shall be called by special grace, and with the converted and believing Jews, shall form a Gospel church state, separate from the world of the ungodly; or of the world of God's elect among Jews and Gentiles, whose cause, being undertook by Christ, he will now vindicate it, and redeem them from sin and Satan, who have usurped a power and dominion over them: hence it follows,
now shall the prince of this world be cast out. The phrase, , "the prince of the world", is much used by Jewish writers (d), by whom an angel is meant; and they seem to design the angel of death, which is the devil: and it is certain, that he is here intended, and is so called, not because he has any legal power and authority over the world; but because he has usurped a dominion over it, and has great power and efficacy in the hearts of the children of disobedience, who yield a voluntary subjection to him, as if he was their proper lord and sovereign: now the time was at hand, when he should be cast out of the empire of the world he had assumed, and out of the temples of the Gentiles, and out of the hearts of God's elect among them.
(d) T. Bab. Yebamot, fol. 16. 2. & Sanhedrin, fol. 94. 1. & Cholin, fol. 60. 1.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
31. Now is the judgment of this world—the world that "crucified the Lord of glory" (1Co 2:8), considered as a vast and complicated kingdom of Satan, breathing his spirit, doing his work, and involved in his doom, which Christ's death by its hands irrevocably sealed.
now shall the prince of this world be cast out—How differently is that fast-approaching "hour" regarded in the kingdoms of darkness and of light! "The hour of relief; from the dread Troubler of our peace—how near it is! Yet a little moment, and the day is ours!" So it was calculated and felt in the one region. "Now shall the prince of this world be cast out," is a somewhat different view of the same event. We know who was right. Though yet under a veil, He sees the triumphs of the Cross in unclouded and transporting light.
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