Luke 9:49 Commentary - Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New TestamentObserve here, 1. St. John's relation of a matter of fact to our Saviour; namely, his forbidding one to cast out devils in Christ's name, that did not follow Christ as they did; for though only the disciples which followed Christ had a commission to work miracles, yet were there others, no enemies to Christ, who, in imitation of his disciples, did attempt to do the like; and God was pleased, for the honor of his Son, in whose name they cast out devils, to give them sometimes success.
Observe, 2. The action of the disciples towards this person: We forbade him, because he followed not with us.
Where is observable, their rashness in forbidding him of their own heads, before they had consulted Christ about it; and their envy, and emulation, in that they were grieved and discontented that good was done, because they did not do it. It is as hard a matter to look upon the gifts of others without envy, as it is to look upon our own without pride.
Observe, 3. Our Saviour's reply: Forbid him not. Because our Saviour knew, that this action of casting out devils in his name would some ways redound to his glory, although he undertook the matter without direction from Christ. We ought not to censure and condemn those, who do that which is good in itself, though they fail in the manner of their doing it.
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Expository Notes with Practical Observations on the New Testament
William Burkitt (1650 - 1703) was a Church of England clergyman, bible expositor, and devotional writer.
Volume 1: Matthew - John, was published in 1700.
Volume 2: Acts - Revelation was published 1703.