|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
4:14-30 Christ taught in their synagogues, their places of public worship, where they met to read, expound, and apply the word, to pray and praise. All the gifts and graces of the Spirit were upon him and on him, without measure. By Christ, sinners may be loosed from the bonds of guilt, and by his Spirit and grace from the bondage of corruption. He came by the word of his gospel, to bring light to those that sat in the dark, and by the power of his grace, to give sight to those that were blind. And he preached the acceptable year of the Lord. Let sinners attend to the Saviour's invitation when liberty is thus proclaimed. Christ's name was Wonderful; in nothing was he more so than in the word of his grace, and the power that went along with it. We may well wonder that he should speak such words of grace to such graceless wretches as mankind. Some prejudice often furnishes an objection against the humbling doctrine of the cross; and while it is the word of God that stirs up men's enmity, they will blame the conduct or manner of the speaker. The doctrine of God's sovereignty, his right to do his will, provokes proud men. They will not seek his favour in his own way; and are angry when others have the favours they neglect. Still is Jesus rejected by multitudes who hear the same message from his words. While they crucify him afresh by their sins, may we honour him as the Son of God, the Saviour of men, and seek to show we do so by our obedience.
Verses 25-27. - But I tell you of a truth, many widows were in Israel in the days of Elias, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, when great famine was throughout all the land; but unto none of them was Elias sent, save unto Sarepta, a city of Sidon, unto a woman that was a widow. And many lepers were in Israel in the time of Eliseus the prophet; and none of them was cleansed, saving Naaman the Syrian. In support of these assertions, Jesus proceeds to quote two well known incidents in the story of Israel. They must remember God's mercies in past times were not confined to Israel. There were many starving widows among the chosen people, not a few childless, desolate hearths; but their own great Elijah was sent to none of these, but to a despised Phoenician woman in Sarepta, hard by Sidon. Elisha, that loved man of God, who passed by the homes of the people continually, performed his famous miracle of healing on no child of Israel, though many a leper mourned his sad lot among the chosen people; but the one on whom Elisha worked his mighty miracle of mercy was the Syrian leper Naaman, the great foe of Israel.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
But I tell you of a truth,.... Or in truth: it answers to a phrase often used by the Jewish writers (o); and, which, they say (p), wherever, and of whatsoever it is spoken, it signifies a tradition of Moses from Mount Sinai, and so that which is most true, sure, and firm, and to be depended on; and such is what our Lord hereafter delivers; yea, the word, "truth", or "of a truth", and which is the same as "in truth", is used by the Jews (q), as , "the form of an oath": so that these words of Christ are a strong asseveration, and amount to a solemn oath with respect to what follows:
many widows were in Israel in the days of Elias; or Elijah, the prophet; that is, there were many that were not only widows, but poor widows, and in very famishing circumstances in the land of Israel, when Elijah was the prophet of the Lord to that people:
and when the heaven was shut up three years and six months; so that no rain descended all that time: the same is observed by James 5:17 and though the space of time, in which there was no rain, is not so clear from the history of it in the book of Kings; yet, as this is fixed by Christ, and his apostle, and there is nothing in the history that contradicts it, it is to be received without scruple:
when great famine was throughout all the land of Israel; and which so long a drought must needs bring.
(o) Misn. Sabbat, c. 1. sect. 3. Trumot, c. 2. sect. 1.((p) T. Hieros. Sabbat, fol. 3. 2. & 12. 1. Maimon. & Bartenora in Misn. Trumot, c. 3. sect. 1.((q) T. Bab. Beracot, fol. 55. 1. & Gloss. in ib.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
25-27. But I tell you, &c.—falling back for support on the well-known examples of Elijah and Elisha (Eliseus), whose miraculous power, passing by those who were near, expended itself on those at a distance, yea on heathens, "the two great prophets who stand at the commencement of prophetic antiquity, and whose miracles strikingly prefigured those of our Lord. As He intended like them to feed the poor and cleanse the lepers, He points to these miracles of mercy, and not to the fire from heaven and the bears that tore the mockers" [Stier].
three years and six months—So Jas 5:17, including perhaps the six months after the last fall of rain, when there would be little or none at any rate; whereas in 1Ki 18:1, which says the rain returned "in the third year," that period is probably not reckoned.
Luke 4:25 Parallel Commentaries
Luke 4:25 NIV
Luke 4:25 NLT
Luke 4:25 ESV
Luke 4:25 NASB
Luke 4:25 KJV
Bible Hub: Online Parallel Bible