Wesley's Notes on the Bible
And again he entered into Capernaum, after some days; and it was noised that he was in the house.
2:1 And again - After having been in desert places for some time, he returned privately to the city. In the house - In Peter's house.
And straightway many were gathered together, insomuch that there was no room to receive them, no, not so much as about the door: and he preached the word unto them.
2:2 And immediately many were gathered together - Hitherto continued the general impression on their hearts. Hitherto, even at Capernaum, all who heard received the word with joy.
And they come unto him, bringing one sick of the palsy, which was borne of four.
2:3 Mt 9:2; Lu 5:18.
And when they could not come nigh unto him for the press, they uncovered the roof where he was: and when they had broken it up, they let down the bed wherein the sick of the palsy lay.
2:4 They uncovered the roof - Or, took up the covering, the lattice or trap door, which was on all their houses, (being flat roofed.) And finding it not wide enough, broke the passage wider, to let down the couch.
When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee.
But there were certain of the scribes sitting there, and reasoning in their hearts,
2:6 But certain of the scribes - See whence the first offence cometh! As yet not one of the plain unlettered people were offended. They all rejoiced in the light, till these men of learning came, to put darkness for light, and light for darkness. Wo to all such blind guides! Good had it been for these if they had never been born. O God, let me never offend one of thy simple ones! Sooner let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth!
Why doth this man thus speak blasphemies? who can forgive sins but God only?
And immediately when Jesus perceived in his spirit that they so reasoned within themselves, he said unto them, Why reason ye these things in your hearts?
Whether is it easier to say to the sick of the palsy, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and take up thy bed, and walk?
But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, (he saith to the sick of the palsy,)
I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy bed, and go thy way into thine house.
And immediately he arose, took up the bed, and went forth before them all; insomuch that they were all amazed, and glorified God, saying, We never saw it on this fashion.
2:12 They were all amazed - Even the scribes themselves for a time.
And he went forth again by the sea side; and all the multitude resorted unto him, and he taught them.
2:13 All the multitude came to him - Namely, by the sea side. And he as readily taught them there as if they had been in a synagogue.
And as he passed by, he saw Levi the son of Alphaeus sitting at the receipt of custom, and said unto him, Follow me. And he arose and followed him.
2:14 Mt 9:9; Lu 5:27.
And it came to pass, that, as Jesus sat at meat in his house, many publicans and sinners sat also together with Jesus and his disciples: for there were many, and they followed him.
2:15 Many publicans and notorious sinners sat with Jesus - Some of them doubtless invited by Matthew, moved with compassion for his old companions in sin. But the next words, For there were many, and they followed him, seem to imply, that the greater part, encouraged by his gracious words and the tenderness of his behaviour, and impatient to hear more, stayed for no invitation, but pressed in after him, and kept as close to him as they could.
And when the scribes and Pharisees saw him eat with publicans and sinners, they said unto his disciples, How is it that he eateth and drinketh with publicans and sinners?
2:16 And the scribes and Pharisees said - So now the wise men being joined by the saints of the world, went a little farther in raising prejudices against our Lord. In his answer he uses as yet no harshness, but only calm, dispassionate reasoning.
When Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.
2:17 I came not to call the righteous - Therefore if these were righteous I should not call them. But now, they are the very persons I came to save.
And the disciples of John and of the Pharisees used to fast: and they come and say unto him, Why do the disciples of John and of the Pharisees fast, but thy disciples fast not?
2:18 Mt 9:14; Lu 5:33.
And Jesus said unto them, Can the children of the bridechamber fast, while the bridegroom is with them? as long as they have the bridegroom with them, they cannot fast.
But the days will come, when the bridegroom shall be taken away from them, and then shall they fast in those days.
No man also seweth a piece of new cloth on an old garment: else the new piece that filled it up taketh away from the old, and the rent is made worse.
And no man putteth new wine into old bottles: else the new wine doth burst the bottles, and the wine is spilled, and the bottles will be marred: but new wine must be put into new bottles.
And it came to pass, that he went through the corn fields on the sabbath day; and his disciples began, as they went, to pluck the ears of corn.
2:23 Mt 12:1; Lu 6:1.
And the Pharisees said unto him, Behold, why do they on the sabbath day that which is not lawful?
And he said unto them, Have ye never read what David did, when he had need, and was an hungred, he, and they that were with him?
How he went into the house of God in the days of Abiathar the high priest, and did eat the shewbread, which is not lawful to eat but for the priests, and gave also to them which were with him?
2:26 In the days of Abiathar the high priest - Abimelech, the father of Abiathar, was high priest then; Abiathar himself not till some time after. This phrase therefore only means, In the time of Abiathar, who was afterward the high priest. 1Sa 21:6.
And he said unto them, The sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath:
2:27 The Sabbath was made for man - And therefore must give way to man's necessity.
Therefore the Son of man is Lord also of the sabbath.
2:28 Moreover the Son of man is Lord even of the Sabbath - Being the supreme Lawgiver, he hath power to dispense with his own laws; and with this in particular.