Luke 9:9
And Herod said, John have I beheaded: but who is this, of whom I hear such things? And he desired to see him.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(9) And he desired to see him.—St. Luke returns (Luke 23:8) to the working of this desire, which he apparently knew from sources that were not within the reach of the other Evangelists.

9:1-9 Christ sent his twelve disciples abroad, who by this time were able to teach others what they had received from the Lord. They must not be anxious to commend themselves to people's esteem by outward appearance. They must go as they were. The Lord Jesus is the fountain of power and authority, to whom all creatures must, in one way or another, be subject; and if he goes with the word of his ministers in power, to deliver sinners from Satan's bondage, they may be sure that he will care for their wants. When truth and love thus go together, and yet the message of God is rejected and despised, it leaves men without excuse, and turns to a testimony against them. Herod's guilty conscience was ready to conclude that John was risen from the dead. He desired to see Jesus; and why did he not go and see him? Probably, because he thought it below him, or because he wished not to have any more reprovers of sin. Delaying it now, his heart was hardened, and when he did see Jesus, he was as much prejudiced against him as others, Lu 23:11.See the notes at Matthew 14:1-2. Compare Mark 6:14-16. 9. desired to see him—but did not, till as a prisoner He was sent to him by Pilate just before His death, as we learn from Lu 23:8. See Poole on "Luke 9:7"

And Herod said, John have I beheaded,.... That is, he had ordered him to be beheaded, and which was accordingly done by the executioner; of which he had full proof, since the head was brought him in a charger, and which he delivered to the daughter of Herodias:

but who is this of whom I hear such things? such, wonderful things, such amazing miracles, as were done by Christ: he seems to have reasoned after this manner with himself, surely this cannot be John, for I have beheaded him! and yet who should it be? and whereas some affirmed, that it was John that was risen from the dead, he began to fear that it was he;

and he desired to see him: that he might be satisfied whether it was he or not; for he had had personal knowledge of John, and converse with him, and therefore, upon sight of him, could tell whether it was he that was risen from the dead, or not; but we do not find Herod had a sight of Christ, until he was sent by Pilate to him at Jerusalem; see Luke 23:7.

And Herod said, John have I beheaded: but who is this, of whom I hear such things? And he desired to see him.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
Luke 9:9. . ἐγὼ ἀπεκεφάλισα: the fact stated in the form of a confession by the criminal, but the grim story not told.—ἐγὼ, emphatic, the “I” of a guilty troubled conscience.—τις: he has no theory, but is simply puzzled, yet the question almost implies suspicion that Jesus is John returned to life. Could there be two such men at the same period?—καὶ ἐζήτει ἰδεῖν αὐτόν: this points forward to Luke 23:8.

9. he desired] Literally, “was seeking this agrees with Luke 23:8, “he was desirous to see him of a long season.” St Luke may have heard particulars about Herod from Chuzas (Luke 8:3) when he was with St Paul at Caesarea Stratonis, or from Manaen at Antioch (Acts 13:1). The curiosity of Herod about Jesus does not seem to have been aroused before this period. A half-alien tyrant such as he was, belonging to a detested house, is often little aware of what is going on among the people; but the mission of the Twelve in all directions, and therefore possibly to Tiberias, produced effects which reached his ears. His wish to see Jesus was not gratified till the day of the crucifixion partly because our Lord purposely kept out of his reach, feeling for him a pure contempt (“this fox,” Luke 13:32), and for this among other reasons never so much as entered the polluted and half-heathen streets of Herod’s new town of Tiberias (which partly covered the site of an old cemetery); and partly because, after the news of John’s murder, He seems at once to have withdrawn from all permanent work in Gennesareth. During the mission of the Twelve we infer that He made a journey alone to Jerusalem to the unnamed feast of John 5:1, probably the Feast of Purim. During this visit occurred the healing of the cripple at Bethesda.

Luke 9:9. Ἐζήτει, he desired) Any one of the common people that wished, could more readily accomplish that desire. For Jesus was not one wont to enter courts: Herod was not one who thought it necessary to go forth from his court (palace) for the sake of Jesus.—[ἰδεῖν αὐτὸν, to see Him) Whether He was like John, or whether, for the sake of Herod, He would perform a miracle?—V. g.]

Verse 9. - And he desired to see him; that is, Jesus. The desire of Herod was gratified, but not then. He saw him the day of the Crucifixion, when Pilate sent him to Herod for judgment; but the tetrarch, weak and wicked though he was, declined the responsibility of shedding that blood, so he sent him back to the Roman governor. Here, in SS. Matthew and Mark, follows the dramatic and vivid account of the death of John the Baptist. St. Luke probably omits it, as his Gospel, or rather Paul's, was derived from what they heard from eyewitnesses and hearers of the Lord. As regards SS. Matthew and Mark, the latter of whom was probably simply the amanuensis of St. Peter, the awful event was woven into their life's story. It was most natural that, in their public preaching and teaching, they should make constant mention of the tragedy which so personally affected Jesus and his little company. St. Luke and his master, Paul, on the other hand, who were not personally present with the Lord when these events took place, would be likely to confine their memoirs as closely as possible to those circumstances in which Jesus alone occupied the prominent place. Luke 9:9He desired (ἐζήτει)

Rev., he sought. He did more than desire.

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