Matthew 12:42

42 The queen of the south shall rise in judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: because she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and behold a greater than Solomon here.

Matthew 12:42 Meaning and Commentary

Matthew 12:42

The queen of the south
Called the queen of Sheba, ( 1 Kings 10:1 ) . Sheba was one of the sons of Joktan, a grandchild of Arphaxad, who settled in the southern parts of Arabia: hence this queen is called the queen of the south. Sheba is by the Targumist


FOOTNOTES:

F16 called Zemargad: and this queen the queen of Zemargad: she goes by different names. According to some, her name was Maqueda F17, and, as others say, Balkis F18: a Jewish chronologer F19 tells us, that the queen of Sheba, who is called Nicolaa, of the kingdom of Jaman, or the south, came to Solomon, to hear his wisdom, and gave him much riches: and Josephus F20 calls her Nicaulis, queen of Egypt and Ethiopia; of whom it is here said, that she

shall rise up in the judgment with this generation, and shall
condemn it:
the meaning is, as before; that she shall rise from the dead, and stand as a witness against that generation at the day of judgment, and, by her example and practices, which will then be produced, condemn them, or aggravate their condemnation:

for she came from the uttermost parts of the earth;
an hyperbolical expression, meaning a great way off from a far country, a very distant part of the world from Jerusalem, (hmlv tmkx ewmvl) , "to hear the wisdom of Solomon"; the very phrase used by the above Jewish F21 writer.

And behold, a greater than Solomon is here;
one that was infinitely greater than Solomon was, in everything; so particularly in that, in which he excelled others, and on the account of which the queen of the south came unto him, namely, wisdom: for he is the wisdom of God, in whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. The Jews themselves F23 own, that the king, meaning the Messiah, that shall be raised up of the seed of David, (hmlvm rty hyhy hmkx leb) , "shall be a greater master of wisdom", or "wiser than Solomon". Now what an aggravation of the condemnation of the Jews will this be another day, that a Gentile woman, living in a foreign and distant land, should, upon the fame of the wisdom of Solomon, leave her own kingdom and country, and come to Jerusalem, to hear his wise discourses about things natural, civil, and moral; and yet the Jews, who had a greater than Solomon in the midst of them, and had no need to take much pains to come to the sight and hearing of him, yet rejected him as the Messiah, blasphemed his miracles, and despised his ministry; though it was concerned about things of a spiritual and evangelic nature, and the eternal welfare of immortal souls.


F16 In 1 Chron. i. 9. & 2 Chron. ix. 1.
F17 Ludolph. Hist. Aethiop. 1. 2. c. 3. & not. in Claud. Confess. sect. 1.
F18 Pocock. Specimen Hist. Arab. p. 59.
F19 Juchasin, fol. 136. 1.
F20 Antiqu. 1. 8. c. 2.
F21 Juchasin, fol. 136. 1.
F23 Maimon. Hilchot. Teshuba, c. 9. sect. 2.

Matthew 12:42 In-Context

40 For as Jonas was in the whale’s belly three days and three nights: so shall the Son of man be in the heart of the earth three days and three nights.
41 The men of Ninive shall rise in judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: because they did penance at the preaching of Jonas. And behold a greater than Jonas here.
42 The queen of the south shall rise in judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: because she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and behold a greater than Solomon here.
43 And when an unclean spirit is gone out of a man he walketh through dry places seeking rest, and findeth none.
44 Then he saith: I will return into my house from whence I came out. And coming he findeth it empty, swept, and garnished.

Related Articles