Verses of Luke 1
Luke 1:5 Commentary - Whedon's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments
§ 3. ELISABETH’S CONCEPTION, Luk 1:5-25 .
Luke now opens his gospel history with the striking scene which announced the approaching birth of John, the harbinger of Jesus.
During the 400 years preceding the account now to be narrated, neither vision nor miracle had been vouchsafed by God to his people. As the old canon closed with the prediction by Malachi that the coming of Elijah should precede the advent of the Messiah, so the first action of the new is to announce the true Elijah’s birth. God did but honour the ordinances of his own appointment when he made his temple the place, his priesthood the instrument, and his service the time of the initial movement.
5. Days of Herod Herod, surnamed the Great. See note on Mat 2:1.
Course of Abia Abijah. See 1Ch 24:3 ; 1Ch 24:10; 1Ch 24:19; also, Neh 12:1; Neh 12:4; Neh 12:17. When the sons of Aaron became too numerous, David divided them into twenty-four courses, or classes. Each class had supervision of the daily service of the temple for a week. The priests for each day of the week were selected from the class by lot. On the return from the captivity but four courses were left, which were again divided into twenty-four. The course of Abia, being the eighth, it has been calculated officiated April 17-23, and in October 3-9.
His wife was of the daughters of Aaron Both John’s parents were of priestly rank, the most honourable nobility among the Jews. It is a saying of R. Jochanan, “He that would be rich, let him join himself to the seed of Aaron; for so it is, that the law and the priesthood make rich. R. Idi bar Abin married a priestess, and from him proceeded those that were made doctors, namely, R. Shecheth, and R. Joshua.” And so Josephus says, “As among different nations there are different sorts of nobility, so with us the sharing of the priesthood is token of illustrious rank.” And so the learned Greek Jew of Alexandria, the celebrated Philo, a contemporary of Jesus, loftily said, “As far as God surpasses man in greatness, so far the high-priesthood surpasses the royalty; for the former is the service of God, the latter the care of men.” The two illustrious births now about to be announced were to be from the daughters of the sacred line of Aaron and the royal line of David.
Verses of Luke 1
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Whedon's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments
Daniel D. Whedon (1808-1885) was a prominent university professor, theologian, and author. He served as Professor of Ancient Languages at Wesleyan University in Connecticut; as Professor of Rhetoric at the University of Michigan; and as editor of the Methodist Quarterly Review from 1856 to1884. He authored numerous books including Commentary on the New Testament (New York: Carlton & Porter, 1860); Commentary on the Old Testament (New York: Nelson & Phillips, 1873); What is Arminianism? (Toronto: W. Briggs, 1879); and Essays, Reviews, and Discourses (New York: Phillips & Hunt, 1887).