Then shall ye begin to say
Or ye shall say; in favour of themselves, and in order to be admitted within, the following pleas will be made by them:
we have eaten and drank in thy presence:
which may be understood both literally of many, who were miraculously led by Christ, or at whose tables he had ate and drank, and they with him; as did not only publicans and sinners, but some of the Pharisees, who invited him to their houses; and in a religious sense, of many who eat of the legal sacrifices; and of others, who eat the bread, and drink the wine at the Lord's table; all which will be insufficient to introduce men into the kingdom and glory of Christ: natural relation to Christ, which the Jews may claim, being born of them, and personal acquaintance with him, and a bare profession of him, will be of no avail another day:
and thou hast taught in our streets;
in the streets of many cities in Galilee and Judea: it was customary with the Jewish doctors to teach in the streets:
``says Rabba, behold I am as Ben Azzai, in the streets of Tiberias F1;''the gloss upon it is,
``who was (yqwvb vrwd) , "expounding in the streets of Tiberias."''And it is said F2 of Rabban Jochanan ben Zaccai,
``that he was sitting in the shade of the temple, and expounding all the whole day;''the gloss on the place is,
``the temple being an hundred cubits high, its shade went very far "in the street", which is before the mountain of the house; and because "the street" was large, and held abundance of men, he was expounding there by reason of the heat, for no school could hold them:''and it is also said of R. Chija F3, that
``he went out and taught his brother's two sons, (qwvb) , "in the street".''So that what our Lord did, was no other than what was usual with their doctors; nor is this contrary to what is said in (See Gill on Matthew 12:19): this is also a fruitless plea and which will be of no service; it will signify nothing, to have heard Christ preached, or Christ himself preach, unless there is faith in him, which works by love; for not hearers of the word only, but doers of it are regarded.
F1 T. Bab. Erubin, fol. 29. 1.
F2 T. Bab. Pesachim, fol. 26. 1.
F3 T. Bab. Moed Katon, fol. 16. 2.