Ark of the Covenant - Bible History Online
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Matthew 4:16 "The people who were sitting in darkness saw a great light, And to those who were sitting in the land and shadow of death, Upon them a light dawned."

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Matthew 4:17 >

      16. The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up--The prophetic strain to which these words belong commences with the seventh chapter of Isaiah, to which the sixth chapter is introductory, and goes down to the end of the twelfth chapter, which hymns the spirit of that whole strain of prophecy. It belongs to the reign of Ahaz and turns upon the combined efforts of the two neighboring kingdoms of Syria and Israel to crush Judah. In these critical circumstances Judah and her king were, by their ungodliness, provoking the Lord to sell them into the hands of their enemies. What, then, is the burden of this prophetic strain, on to the passage here quoted? First, Judah shall not, cannot perish, because IMMANUEL, the Virgin's Son, is to come forth from his loins. Next, one of the invaders shall soon perish, and the kingdoms of neither be enlarged. Further, while the Lord will be the Sanctuary of such as confide in these promises and await their fulfilment, He will drive to confusion, darkness, and despair the vast multitude of the nation who despised His oracles, and, in their anxiety and distress, betook themselves to the lying oracles of the heathen. This carries us down to the end of the eighth chapter. At the opening of the ninth chapter a sudden light is seen breaking in upon one particular part of the country, the part which was to suffer most in these wars and devastations--"the land of Zebulun, and the land of Naphtali, the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, Galilee and the Gentiles." The rest of the prophecy stretches over both the Assyrian and the Chaldean captivities and terminates in the glorious Messianic prophecy of the eleventh chapter and the choral hymn of the twelfth chapter. Well, this is the point seized on by our Evangelist. By Messiah's taking up His abode in those very regions of Galilee, and shedding His glorious light upon them, this prediction, He says, of the Evangelical prophet was now fulfilled; and if it was not thus fulfilled, we may confidently affirm it was not fulfilled in any age of the Jewish ceremony, and has received no fulfilment at all. Even the most rationalistic critics have difficulty in explaining it in any other way.

JFB.


Questions Related to this Verse

Where in Scripture does it talk about the darkness of spiritual blindness?

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Matthew 4 Images and Notes

Brief Summary: Jesus fasts for 40 days and is tempted by the devil, Jesus begins His public ministry, Jesus calls His first disciples, Jesus heals the sick.

Outline
1 The temptation of Jesus
13 Jesus dwells in Capernaum
17 Jesus begins to preach
18 Jesus calls Peter and Andrew, James and John
23 Jesus heals the sick

Drawing of the Temptation of Jesus Christ by Dore
Drawing of the Temptation of Jesus Christ by Dore

Important Topics for Bible Study
 

Quick Reference Map
The Beginning of the Ministry of Jesus
Map of Galilee and northern Israel (Click to Enlarge)

Painting of Jesus Calling James and John
Painted Illustration of Jesus Calling James and John

Ancient Customs

Geography
Capernaum
Galilee

 

Matthew Resources

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