Matthew 4:19

Matthew 4:19

And he saith unto them, follow me
These two brethren had been the disciples of John, as Theophylact thinks, and which seems agreeable to ( John 1:35-40 ) and though through John's pointing out Christ unto them, they had some knowledge of him, and conversation with him, yet they abode with him but for that day, ( John 1:37 John 1:38 John 1:39 ) and afterwards returned to their master; and upon his imprisonment, betook themselves to their former employment: from whence Christ now calls them to be his disciples, saying "follow me", or "come after me": that is, be a disciple of mine; see ( Luke 14:27 ) . And to encourage them to it, makes use of this argument; "and", or "for", I "will make you fishers of men": you shall be fishers still, but in a higher sense; and in a far more noble employment, and to much better purpose. The net they were to spread and cast was the Gospel, see ( Matthew 13:47 ) for Christ made them not (hrwt ygyyd) , "fishers of the law", to use the words of Maimonides {g}, but fishers of the Gospel. The sea into which they were to cast the net was first Judea, and then the whole world; the fish they were to catch were the souls of men, both among Jews and Gentiles; of whose conversion and faith they were to be the happy instruments: now none could make them fishers in this sense, or fit them for such service, and succeed them in it, but Christ; and who here promises it unto them.


FOOTNOTES:

F7 Hilcot. Talmud. Torah, c. 1. sect. 12. so Dr. Lightfoot cites the phrase, but in Ed. Amsterd. it is (hrwt ynyd) , "the judgments of the law".
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