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preach, enduing them with the power of working miracles, CHAP. V. Mark vi. 7. Luke ix. Matt. x. he at the same time going into other parts of the country, teaching and preaching himself in their cities, Matt. xi. 1.
The Apostles having finished their ministry for that time, 8. gathered themselves together unto Jesus, who was now probably returned to Capernaum, and told him all things, both what they had done, and what they had taught. And he said unto them, Come ye yourselves apart into a desert place, and rest a while: for there were many coming and going where he was, so that they had no leisure so much as to eat, Mark vi. 31. Hereupon he took them, and went aside privately into a desert place, belonging to the city called Bethsaida, to which he crossed over the sea of Galilee, which is also called the sea of Tiberias ; namely from a city of the same name, built by Herod, the tetrarch of Galilee, on its western shore, and so called by him in honour of Tiberias Cæsar. The great privileges granted by Herod to the inhabitants of this place made it quickly become one of the principal cities of those parts. It is said to have had in it thirteen synagogues and an academy; that here was the last session of the Sanhedrim, or chief council of the Jews; and here the Talmud, or body of the Jewish civil and canon law, was collected.
Now the people seeing Jesus and his disciples depart- 9. ing over to the other side of the sea, went round on foot The people
follow our till they met with our Lord again. Where our Lord hav- Lord to the ing given them many instructions, towards evening before eastern side he dismissed them, miraculously fed them, being about Tiberias. five thousand, with five loaves and two small fishes, there being left after all no fewer than twelve baskets full of the fragments of the five loaves, which remained over and above unto them that had eaten, Luke ix. 10, 11, &c. John vi. 1, 2, &c. The people having seen the miracle that Jesus did in thus feeding them, said, This is of a truth that prophet, viz. that extraordinary prophet, the Messiah, that should come into the world: and hereupon they resolved among themselves to come and take our Lord by force, and to pro
PART 1. claim him their King. When Jesus therefore perceived
this, he straightway constrained his disciples (who seem to have liked well enough, with the people's intentions, to
make their master a King, and so to have been unwilling Our Lord to be sent away from him at that juncture) to get into the sends the Apostles
ship, and to go before him unto the other (that is, the back to the western) side of the lake again. After which he withdrew westernside of the sea.
himself into a mountain alone to pray; where having tarried till about the fourth watch of the night, he comes to his disciples walking upon the sea. The disciples, when they saw him walking on the sea, supposed it had been a spirit, or apparition, and cried out for fear. But our Lord quickly put them out of their fear, telling them, that it was he himself; whereupon they gladly received him into their ship, into which as soon as he was come up, the wind, which had all along hitherto tossed them, ceased, and their ship was immediately at the land of Genne
sareth, whither they were going. 10. The day following, when the people, which had been fed The people by Jesus, and had remained all that night on the other the western side of the sea, namely, on that side where they had been side of the fed, began to observe with themselves, that there was no
other boat there, save that one, whereinto his disciples were entered, and that Jesus went not with his disciples into the boat, but that his disciples were gone away alone,
, they sought for our Lord in the neighbouring places, not imagining he had passed the lake. But hearing nothing of him in those parts, they took the opportunity of some boats that were come from Tiberias near to the place where they had been fed, and in them came over to Capernaum, seeking for Jesus. And when they had found him, they let him know, that they had been seeking after him, and were still at a loss to know how he came over to that side of the sea. Jesus answered them, Verily, ye seek me, not because ye saw the miracles, but ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled; and from hence takes occasion to exhort them, not to labour for the meat which perishes, or that food which can nourish only for a short
time, but for that meat which endures, and will nourish their CHAP. V. souls to everlasting life, and which he should give unto them in due time. And in the following part of this his discourse our Lord plainly acquaints them, that he was the living bread which came down from heaven: If any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever; and the bread that he should give was his flesh or body, which he should give, by permitting it to be put to death, for the life of the world. To which our Lord subjoins the indispensable necessity that lies on all Christians to partake of the sacrament, in order to obtain eternal happiness; for, saith our Lord, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat (not only by believing in me crucified, but also sacramentally) the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you, that is, it is impossible for you to obtain everlasting life. This great and important doctrine I could not but take this special notice of, that so the reader may see, that receiving the sacrament of the Lord's Supper is necessary to salvation, as well as the receiving the other sacrament of Baptism, John vi. 27, 51, 53.
About this time was celebrated that which was the third The third passover after our Lord's entrance on his public ministry, and which is mentioned, and only mentioned, by St. John the Evangelist, in the same chapter, where he records the foregoing discourse of our Saviour, viz. John vi. 4.
» A. D.32.
CH A P. VI.
32 and 33.
A. D. Of our Saviour's Journeyings from the third Passover after
his Baptism and Entrance upon his Public Ministry, to the fourth Passover, at which he was crucified.
next journey of our Lord taken notice of by the of Canaan and Syro- Evangelists is that, when he went to the coasts of Tyre phænicia. and Sidon, where he cured the daughter of the woman of
Canaan, Matt. xv. 22. or, as St. Mark styles her, who was a Greek, a Syrophænician by nation. That the coasts or territories of Tyre and Sidon lay to the west and north of Galilee, has been observed chap. i. sect. 8. Where also it was observed, that the old inhabitants of this tract were descendants of Canaan, and many of them not driven out by the children of Israel; whence this tract seems to have retained the name of Canaan a great while after those other parts of the said country, which were better inhabited by the Israelites, had lost the said name. The Greeks called the tract inhabited by the old Canaanites along the Mediterranean sea, Phænicia; the more inland parts, as being inhabited partly by Canaanites or Phænicians, and partly by Syrians, Syrophoenicia : and hence the woman said by St. Matthew to be of Canaan, is more particularly said by St. Mark to be a Syrophænician by nation, as she was a Greek by religion and language. It is observable that the name Phænicia, though it be mentioned in the Acts, yet it is never mentioned in the Gospels; but the lower or southern parts of it are in these always denoted by the coasts of Tyre and Sidon, two principal cities herein, of which therefore it will be convenient to give a more particular account.
I shall begin with the city of Tyre, which lies south of of Tyre. the other, about the distance of seven hours, or somewhat
better than twenty miles. It is probably supposed to have been first built by a colony of the Sidonians, (whence by
Isaiah, chap. xxiii. 12. it is called the daughter of Sidon,) CHAP. VI. and that on an high hill on the continent, the ruins whereof are still remaining by the name of Palætyrus, or Old Tyre. In process of time the city was removed into an adjoining rocky island, about seventy paces from the main land, and became a place of great trade and wealth, and for some time outdoing even Sidon itself in both respects. Hence Isaiah in his forementioned chapter saith of it, that her merchants were princes, and her traffickers the honourable of the earth. It is particularly famous for dying purple, said to be first found out here, and that by a mere accident; a dog's lips, by eating of the fish called Conchilis, being dyed of a purple colour. It was taken an destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar; and after it had recovered itself, and flourished for a considerable time, it was again demolished by Alexander the Great, and by him joined to the main land. Recovering once again both its beauty and riches, the city became a confederate of the Romans, and was by them invested with the privileges of a Roman city, for its great fidelity. It was made in the flourishing times of Christianity the metropolitan see for the province of Phoenicia: but in A. D. 636. it was subjected by the Saracens; under which yoke having groaned for the space of 488 years, it was at last regained by the Christians, A.D. 1124. It was attempted afterward by Saladine, but in vain: however it was finally brought under the Turkish thraldom, A. D. 1289, as it still continues.
Mr. Maundrell b has given us this account of its state and condition, A. D. 1697. This city, saith he, standing in the sea upon a peninsula, promises at a distance something very magnificent. But when you come to it, you find no similitude of that glory, for which it was so renowned in ancient times, and which the prophet Ezekiel describes, chap. xxvi. xxvii. and xxviii. On the north side it has an old Turkish ungarrisoned castle; besides which you see nothing here, but a mere Babel of broken walls,