From Wesley's Notes.
10. Seeing the star - Standing over where the child was.
11. They presented to him gifts - It was customary to offer some present to any eminent person whom they visited. And so it is, as travelers observe, in the eastern countries to this day. Gold, frankincense, and myrrh - Probably these were the best things their country afforded; and the presents ordinarily made to great persons. This was a most seasonable, providential assistance for a long and expensive journey into Egypt, a country where they were entirely strangers, and were to stay for a considerable time.
15. That it might be fulfilled - That is, whereby was fulfilled. The original word frequently signifies, not the design of an action, but barely the consequence or event of it. Which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet - on another occasion: Out of Egypt have I called my Son - which was now fulfilled as it were anew; Christ being in a far higher sense the Son of God than Israel, of whom the words were originally spoken. Hosea xi, 1.
16. Then Herod, seeing that he was deluded by the wise men - So did his pride teach him to regard this action, as if it were intended to expose him to the derision of his subjects. Sending forth - a party of soldiers: In all the confines thereof - In all the neighbouring places, of which Rama was one.
17. Then was fulfilled - A passage of Scripture, whether prophetic, historical, or poetical, is in the language of the New Testament fulfilled, when an event happens to which it may with great propriety be accommodated.
18. Rachel weeping for her children - The Benjamites, who inhabited Rama, sprung from her. She was buried near this place; and is here beautifully represented risen, as it were out of her grave, and bewailing her lost children. Because they are not - that is, are dead. The preservation of Jesus from this destruction, may be considered as a figure of God's care over his children in their greatest danger. God does not often, as he easily could, cut off their persecutors at a stroke. But he provides a hiding place for his people, and by methods not less effectual, though less pompous, preserves them from being swept away, even when the enemy comes in like a flood. Jer. xxxi, 15.
22. He was afraid to go thither - into Judea; and so turned aside into the region of Galilee - a part of the land of Israel not under the jurisdiction of Archelaus.
23. He came and dwelt in Nazareth - (where he had dwelt before he went to Bethlehem) a place contemptible to a proverb. So that hereby was fulfilled what has been spoken in effect by several of the prophets, (though by none of them in express words, ) He shall be called a Nazarene - that is, he shall be despised and rejected, shall be a mark of public contempt and reproach.
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