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Bible Commentary / Bible Study

Revelation to Joseph

Wesley's Notes/ Commentary on St. Matthew 1:18-25

From Wesley's Notes.

"To be called, only means, according to the Hebrew manner of speaking, that the person spoken of shall really and effectually be what he is called, and actually fulfill that title."

19. A just man - A strict observer of the law: therefore not thinking it right to keep her.

21. Jesus - That is, a Saviour. It is the same name with Joshua (who was a type of him) which properly signifies, The Lord, Salvation. His people - Israel. And all the Israel of God.

23. They shall call his name Emmanuel - To be called, only means, according to the Hebrews manner of speaking, that the person spoken of shall really and effectually be what he is called, and actually fulfil that title. Thus, Unto us a child is born - and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, the Mighty God, the Prince of Peace - That is, he shall be all these, though not so much nominally, as really, and in effect. And thus was he called Emmanuel; which was no common name of Christ, but points out his nature and office; as he is God incarnate, and dwells by his Spirit in the hearts of his people. It is observable, the words in Isaiah are, Thou (namely, his mother) shalt call; but here, They - that is, all his people, shall call - shall acknowledge him to be Emmanuel, God with us. Which being interpreted - This is a clear proof that St. Matthew wrote his Gospel in Greek, and not in Hebrew. Isaiah vii, 14.

25. He knew her not, till after she had brought forth - It cannot be inferred from hence, that he knew her afterward: no more than it can be inferred from that expression, 2 Sam. vi, 23, Michal had no child till the day of her death, that she had children afterward. Nor do the words that follow, the first-born son, alter the case. For there are abundance of places, wherein the term first born is used, though there were no subsequent children. Luke ii, 7.

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