|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
4:31-44 Christ's preaching much affected the people; and a working power went with it to the consciences of men. These miracles showed Christ to be a controller and conqueror of Satan, a healer of diseases. Where Christ gives a new life, in recovery from sickness, it should be a new life, spent more than ever in his service, to his glory. Our business should be to spread abroad Christ's fame in every place, to beseech him in behalf of those diseased in body or mind, and to use our influence in bringing sinners to him, that his hands may be laid upon them for their healing. He cast the devils out of many who were possessed. We were not sent into this world to live to ourselves only, but to glorify God, and to do good in our generation. The people sought him, and came unto him. A desert is no desert, if we are with Christ there. He will continue with us, by his word and Spirit, and extend the same blessings to other nations, till, throughout the earth, the servants and worshippers of Satan are brought to acknowledge him as the Christ, the Son of God, and to find redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins.
Verse 38. - And he arose out of the synagogue, and entered into Simon's house. And Simon's wife's mother was taken with a great fever; and they besought him for her. This abrupt mention of Peter (Simon) for the first time, without any explanatory notice, tells us that when St. Luke wrote his Gospel Peter was well known and honored in all the Churches. The Lord's choice of one who was already married, the subsequent favor showed to him, the high position evidently accorded to him in the Church of the first days, is a perpetual protest against the exaggerated asceticism which later was so earnestly taught in ecclesiastical Christianity. The epithet "great," applied to the fever, was a well-known technical term; it was used by Galen of fevers. There are several expressions in this Gospel which remind us that the author was a trained physician.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And he arose out of the synagogue,.... That is, when he had dispossessed the unclean spirit, he rose up, and went out of the synagogue:
and entered into Simon's house; the house of Simon Peter, and which was also Andrew's; and in Beza's ancient copy, and in one of Stephens's, it is added, "and of Andrew"; who, though they were both natives of Bethsaida, yet, it seems, had an house at Capernaum, whither Christ went of his own accord, or by an invitation given him:
and Simons wife's mother was taken with a great fever. The Vulgate Latin version reads, "with great fevers". The fever is
"a disease, or rather a class of diseases, whose characteristic is a preternatural heat felt through the whole body, or, at least, the principal parts thereof, attended with other symptoms----"One" defines a fever, a strenuous endeavour, or effort of nature to throw off some morbific matter, that greatly incommodes the body.---- "Another", an augmented velocity of the blood; others, a fermentation of the blood; accompanied with a quick pulse and excessive heat.----The causes of fevers are innumerable, and the disease even often arises in the soundest bodies, where there was no previous morbific apparatus, as cachochymia, plethora, &c. but merely from a change of air, food, or other alteration in the non-naturals. A fever, "one" observes, is an inseparable companion of an inflammation. The symptoms are many: every fever, arising from any internal cause, is attended with a quick pulse, and unusual heat at different times, and in different degrees. Where these are intense, the fever is acute, where remiss, slow. The disease begins almost always with a sense of; chillness, and in its progress is chiefly distinguished by the velocity of the pulse: so that a too quick contraction of the heart, with an increased resistance, or impulse against the capillaries, furnishes the proper idea of a fever (z).''
The fever Peter's wife's mother lay ill of, is said to be a "great one"; which circumstance is the rather mentioned, to illustrate the miraculous cure of it by Christ; See Gill on Matthew 8:14.
And they besought him for her; either his disciples Peter, Andrew, James, and John, who were all present, or the other relations and friends of the sick person, which were in the house; who having heard of his casting out the unclean spirit in the synagogue, believed that he had power to heal this disease; and therefore intreat him, for her sake, and upon her account, that he would restore her health.
(z) See Chambers's Cyclopaedia in the word "Fever".
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
Lu 4:38-41. Peter's Mother-in-law and Many Others, Healed.
(See on Mt 8:14-17.)
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