Luke 2:32 Commentary - Whedon's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments
32. To lighten the Gentiles The secular and unspiritual masses of Jews fell into the fanatical and arrogant notion, that Christ was to be merely a circumscribed and exclusively Jewish Messiah; the twelve apostles could hardly be made to resign that notion. Even after the resurrection it took the independence of a martyred Stephen and all the powers of an inspired Paul to assert the full rights of the Gentiles in the Church of God. Scholars have said that in the work of opening the gates of Christianity to the Gentiles Stephen was the forerunner of Paul. Might it not be said that Simeon was the forerunner of Stephen, and the Gentile Luke the historian of both? Yet the true doctrine on the subject is explicitly and repeatedly declared not only here but in the prophecies of the Old Testament. Compare Isa 9:2; Isa 40:1; Isa 49:6. Those who understood the prophets, and caught their true spirit like Simeon, would not need the power of prophecy to understand those passages.
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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).