Luke 7:33
For John the Baptist came neither eating bread nor drinking wine; and ye say, He hath a devil.
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(33) For John the Baptist came . . .—The substantives “bread” and “wine” are not found in St. Matthew’s report.

7:19-35 To his miracles in the kingdom of nature, Christ adds this in the kingdom of grace, To the poor the gospel is preached. It clearly pointed out the spiritual nature of Christ's kingdom, that the messenger he sent before him to prepare his way, did it by preaching repentance and reformation of heart and life. We have here the just blame of those who were not wrought upon by the ministry of John Baptist or of Jesus Christ himself. They made a jest of the methods God took to do them good. This is the ruin of multitudes; they are not serious in the concerns of their souls. Let us study to prove ourselves children of Wisdom, by attending the instructions of God's word, and adoring those mysteries and glad tidings which infidels and Pharisees deride and blaspheme.See this passage explained in the notes at Matthew 11:16-19. "And the Lord said." This clause is wanting in almost all the manuscripts, and is omitted by the best critics. 31-35. the Lord said, &c.—As cross, capricious children, invited by their playmates to join them in their amusements, will play with them neither at weddings nor funerals (juvenile imitations of the joyous and mournful scenes of life), so that generation rejected both John and his Master: the one because he was too unsocial—more like a demoniac than a rational man; the other, because He was too much the reverse, given to animal indulgences, and consorting with the lowest classes of society. But the children of Wisdom recognize and honor her, whether in the austere garb of the Baptist or in the more attractive style of his Master, whether in the Law or in the Gospel, whether in rags or in royalty, for "the full soul loatheth an honeycomb, but to the hungry soul every bitter thing is sweet" (Pr 27:7). See Poole on "Luke 7:31"

For John the Baptist,.... Who is designed by the children that mourned in the above simile, with whom his character and conduct agree; he preached very mournful doctrine, delivered it in a very solemn and awful manner, and lived a very austere life, and fasted much, as did also his disciples. The word "Baptist" is here added by Luke, which Matthew has not, to distinguish him from others; and it may be, because he had just spoke of his baptism. The Persic version only reads, "the Baptist"; of him our Lord says, that he

came neither eating bread, nor drinking wine; which were the common food and drink of men, but his diet were locusts and wild honey, and from this he often abstained; nor would he attend festivals and entertainments, or be free and sociable with men: "bread" and "wine" are here mentioned, which are not in Matthew:

and ye say, he hath a devil; is mad, or melancholy; for madness and melancholy, or the hypochondriac disorder, was by them sometimes imputed to a diabolical possession, and influence, as the cause of it; and though these men pretended to great austerity of life, and frequent fastings, yet John was too abstemious for them, and they could not agree with his doctrine nor method of living; See Gill on Matthew 12:18.

For John the Baptist came neither eating bread nor drinking wine; and ye say, He hath a devil.
33. neither eating bread nor drinking wine] “His meat was locusts and wild honey,” Matthew 3:4. Being a Nazarite he drank no wine, Luke 1:15; see 2Es 9:24.

He hath a devil] They sneered at him for a moody or melancholy temperament which they attributed to an evil spirit. This in fact was their coarse way of describing any peculiarity or exaltation which struck them as strange. At a later period they said the same of Christ, John 7:20; John 10:20.

Luke 7:33. Ἄρτον, bread) In the baking of bread, art intervenes: but John used whatever food was thrown in his way altogether unartificial.—καὶ λέγετε, and ye say) See Luke 7:39, where similar bad language was being spoken in the heart of a Pharisee.

Verse 33. - For John the Baptist came neither eating bread nor drinking wine. Referring to his austere life spent in the desert, apart from the ordinary joys and pleasures of men, not even sharing in what are usually termed the necessities of life. He was, in addition, a perpetual Nazarite, and as such no wine or fermented drink ever passed his lips. And ye say, He hath a devil. Another way for expressing their conviction that the great desert-preacher was insane, and assigning a demoniacal possession as the cause of madness. Not very long after this incident the curtain of death fell on the earthly scene of John's life. "We fools accounted his life madness, and his end to be without honour: how is he numbered among the children of God, and his lot is among the saints!" (Wisd. 5:4, 5). We. may be quite sure that "in the fiery furnace God walked with his servant, so that his spirit was not harmed, and having thus annealed his nature to the utmost that this earth can do, he took him hastily away and placed him among the glorified in heaven" (Irving, quoted by Farrar). Luke 7:33Bread and wine

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