Then Jesus answered and said
Not to the disciples, but to the father of the child; see ( Mark 9:19 ) and those that were with him, and the Scribes that were present, disputing with the disciples, upbraiding them with their weakness, and triumphing over them: "O faithless and perverse generation"; a way of speaking, which is never used of the disciples, and indeed could not be properly said of them; for though they often appeared to be men of little faith, yet not faithless; nor were they so rebellious, stubborn, and perverse, as here represented, though there was a great deal of perverseness in them: but the characters better suit the body of the Jewish nation, who, on account of the incredulity of this man, and those that were present, being of the same temper with them, are exclaimed against in words, which were long ago spoken of their ancestors, ( Deuteronomy 32:5 ) and from whence they seem to be taken.
How long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer
Upbraiding them with the length of time he had been with them, in which so many wonderful works had been done among them, and yet they remained unbelieving and incorrigible; and intimating, that his patience and longsuffering would not always continue; and that in a short time, he should be gone from them, and they should no longer enjoy the benefit of his ministry and miracles, but wrath should come upon them to the uttermost: but however, whilst he was with them, notwithstanding all their unbelief and obstinacy, he should go on to do good; and therefore says,
bring him hither to me,
meaning the lunatic child. These words also are directed, not unto the disciples, but to the father of the child; for so it is said in ( Luke 9:41 ) "bring thy son hither"; and so the Syriac renders it here (whyta) , "bring thou him"; though, as expressed in the plural number, may very well be thought to intend him, and his friends.