And if I by Beelzebub cast out demons, by whom do your children cast them out? therefore they shall be your judges.
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This then being the first refutation, the next after it is that which relates to the disciples. For not always in one way only, but also in a second and third, He solves their objections, being minded most abundantly to silence their shamelessness. Which sort of thing He did also with respect to the Sabbath, bringing forward David, the priests, the testimony that says, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice, the cause of the Sabbath, for which it was ordained; for the Sabbath, says He, was for man. This then He does in the present case also: where after the first He proceeds to a second refutation, plainer than the former.
See here too His gentleness. For He said not, my disciples, nor, the apostles, but your sons; to the end that if indeed they were minded to return to the same nobleness with them, they might derive hence a powerful spring that way; but if they were uncandid, and continued in the same course, they might not thenceforth be able to allege any plea, though ever so shameless.
But what He says is like this, By whom do the apostles cast them out? For in fact they were doing so already, because they had received authority from Him, and these men brought no charge against them; their quarrel not being with the acts, but with the person only. As then it was His will to show that their sayings arose only from their envy against Him, He brings forward the apostles; thus: If I so cast them out, much more those, who have received their authority from me. Nevertheless, no such thing have ye said to them. How then bring ye these charges against me, the author of their doings, while acquitting them of the accusations? This, however, will not free you from your punishment, rather it will condemn you the more. Therefore also He added, They shall be your judges. For when persons from among you, and having been practised in these things, both believe me and obey, it is most clear that they will also condemn those who are against me both in deed and word.