|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
19:11-27 This parable is like that of the talents, Mt 25. Those that are called to Christ, he furnishes with gifts needful for their business; and from those to whom he gives power, he expects service. The manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal, 1Co 12:7. And as every one has received the gift, so let him minister the same, 1Pe 4:10. The account required, resembles that in the parable of the talents; and the punishment of the avowed enemies of Christ, as well as of false professors, is shown. The principal difference is, that the pound given to each seems to point out the gift of the gospel, which is the same to all who hear it; but the talents, distributed more or less, seem to mean that God gives different capacities and advantages to men, by which this one gift of the gospel may be differently improved.
Verses 11-27. - The parable of the pounds. Verse 11. - And as they heard these things, he added and spake a parable. The words which introduce this parable-story indicate its close connection with the events which had just taken place. "He added, and spake (προσθεὶς εϊπε)." Because he was nigh to Jerusalem, and because they thought that the kingdom of God should immediately appear. Thus were briefly stated the reasons which determined the Master to speak the following parable. First, "he was nigh to Jerusalem," only at most a few hours' journey from the holy city - his last solemn, awful visit, when the mysterious act of stupendous love would be accomplished. So he determined to give a veiled parabolic picture of himself and of his chosen people. Second, "they thought that the kingdom of God should immediately appear." In his parable he proposed to moderate the wild romantic enthusiasm of his immediate followers and of the Passover crowds by painting for them a quiet picture of the future of work and waiting which lay before them. The parable contains three sets of lessons.
(1) The varieties of reward apportioned to different degrees of zeal and industry in the Master's service.
(2) The eternity of loss and shame which will be the portion of the slothful and unfaithful servant.
(3) The terrible doom of his enemies.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And as they heard these things,.... What Zacchaeus said to Christ, and what Christ said to Zacchaeus; particularly, that salvation, or the Saviour was then come to his house, and that he was come to save lost persons:
he added, and spake a parable; that is, as the Syriac version renders it, "he added a parable to the word", or to what he had said:
because he was nigh to Jerusalem: within ten "parsas", or large miles; for at such a distance was Jerusalem from Jericho (f), where Christ now was, according to the Jewish writers; but according to Josephus (g), it was a hundred and fifty furlongs, which must be eighteen or twenty miles, and this may be said to be nigh; and not long after this, we hear of Christ at the Mount of Olives, which was about a mile from Jerusalem, Luke 19:29.
And because they thought that the kingdom of God should immediately appear: or be revealed, or made manifest: the phrase is Jewish; so Sol 2:12 "the time of the singing of birds is come", is interpreted (h), the time that the "kingdom of heaven", "shall be revealed", is come, and elsewhere (i),
"say to the cities of the house of Judah, , "the kingdom of your God is revealed;"''
meaning in both places, as here, the kingdom of the Messiah: what induced the disciples of Christ, or the multitude, or both, to imagine that the temporal kingdom of the Messiah, which they were expecting, would quickly be set up, might be what he had said to Zacchaeus, that salvation was that day come to his house, he being a son of Abraham; which they understanding of a temporal salvation, took it as a hint, that the outward prosperity of the seed of Abraham was at hand; as also what he had said, concerning his coming to seek and save that which is lost; which they were willing to interpret, of the civil state of Judea, and that he was come to restore its lost liberties and privileges; and partly, because he was now not a great way from Jerusalem, and was on his journey thither, in order to make his entrance in a very public manner; which was the metropolis of their nation, and the ancient seat of their kings, David, Solomon, and others: now the scope and design of the following parable, is to refute the notion of a temporal kingdom, and its near approach; by showing, that his kingdom lay a great way off, and was not of this world; and that his servants and disciples had a great deal of business to transact for him, and must not think of pomp and grandeur, but of labour and service; and that the Jews were so far from receiving any advantages by his kingdom, that they would not submit to his government, and would be treated as enemies, and utterly destroyed; even their nation, city, and temple.
(f) Bartenora in Misn. Tamid, c. 3, sect. 8. (g) De Bello Jud. l. 4. c. 27. (h) Shirhashirim Rabba, fol. 11. 4. (i) Targum in Isaiah 40.9.
Wesley's Notes on the Bible
19:11 They thought the kingdom of God - A glorious temporal kingdom, would immediately appear.
Luke 19:11 Parallel Commentaries
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