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Matthew 21:1

And when they drew near unto Jerusalem, and came to Bethphage, unto the mount of Olives, then sent Jesus two disciples,
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Cornelius a Lapide

AD 1637
And when they were come nigh, &c. Mark has ( Mark 11:1), "And when they came nigh to Jerusalem, unto Bethphage and Bethany, at the mount of Olives, He sendeth forth two of His disciples," and Luke adds ( Luke 19:29), "And it came to pass, when he was come nigh to Bethphage and Bethany, at the mount called the mount of Olives, He sent two of His disciples." But Mark and Luke are speaking generally, because Bethphage, Jerusalem, and Bethany are all nigh to each other. For coming to particulars it is clear from S. John ( John 12:1, John 12:12) that on the preceding Sabbath Christ supped, and passed the night at Bethany, and on the following day, or Palm Sunday, He came nearer to Jerusalem, that is to say, to Bethphage, and from thence sent His disciples to fetch the ass with her colt. For Bethphage was nearer to Jerusalem. Whence from Bethany through Bethphage, the Mount of Olives and the valley of Jehoshaphat was the road to Jerusalem. The valley of Jehoshaphat is close to Jerusalem. Th...
28 mins1/15

Cornelius a Lapide

AD 1637
se20. And when the disciples saw it, they marvelled, saying, How soon is the fig tree withered away! The Vulg. omits fig tree, which is found in the Greek and Syriac. This took place on the following day, for Christ on the Monday returning from Bethany to Jerusalem cursed the fig tree: after that He cast out the buyers from the Temple, and taught there: in the evening He returned from the city to Bethany: on the Tuesday morning, as the disciples were returning with Him from Bethany to Jerusalem, they saw the fig tree dried up, and then they cried in wonder, How immediately is it dried up! That this is the order in which the events happened is plain from Mark xi19 , 20. Symbolically: Christ cursed the fig tree, because a fig was the tree which God forbade, of which Adam ate, and ruined himself and his posterity, as the learned men whom I have cited ( Genesis 2:9) think with probability. Allegorically: the withered fig tree denotes the Jews, who when Christ came, being unbelieving, los...

Cornelius a Lapide

AD 1637
se15. And when the chief priests and scribes saw the wonderful things that He did, and the children crying in the Temple, and saying Hosanna to the Son of David; they were sore displeased. Both because they were envious of this glory of Christ, as because they were displeased at their gains and marketings being cast out of the Temple. ...
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Cornelius a Lapide

AD 1637
se17. And He left them, and went out of the city into Bethany; and He lodged there. Syriac and Arabic, He passed the night at Bethany. See here the ingratitude and fickleness of the people: for those who that very morning had cried to Christ Hosanna, on the evening of the same day forsake Christ for fear of the Scribes, so that no one was found to invite Him to hospitality. Therefore Christ was forced to go out of the city to Martha and Magdalene, his hostesses at Bethany. ...
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Cornelius a Lapide

AD 1637
se18. Now in the morning as He returned into the city, he hungered. This, therefore, took place on the day after Palm Sunday, on Monday, the eleventh day of Nisan, the first month; which Isaiah , according to our reckoning, the twenty-first of March. For three days afterwards (namely, on Friday in the Paschal season, which fell that year on the twenty-fifth day of March) Christ was crucified and offered up. He hungered. Not with natural hunger, but with hunger voluntarily excited, say S. Chrysostom and Abulensis (qust103). For it was morning, and Christ had supped with Martha the evening previous; so that He would not so soon again be hungry. He stirred up, therefore, this hunger in Himself, that by it He might have occasion to curse the unfruitful fig tree. Wherefore, also, He sought figs upon it, although He knew that the time of figs was not yet, as Mark has ( Mark 11:13). For this was the twenty-first of March, as I have said, at which time there are no figs. Observe: this hunger...

Cornelius a Lapide

AD 1637
se19. And when He saw a fig tree in, the way, He came to it, and found nothing thereon, but leaves only, and said unto it Let no fruit grow on thee hencefoward for ever. And presently the fig tree withered away. Christ cursed the fig tree, and dried it up, that He might manifest His power, by which He was able in like manner to destroy and wither up the Scribes and the Jews, His enemies, if He wished; and to show that He would shortly suffer the Cross and death at their hands, not against His will, but voluntarily. Note that this curse of Christ was not done proprie, but by catachresis, abusive. For this malediction only signifies that Christ prayed for evil—i.e, withering for the fig tree—which it is lawful, especially to Christ, for a sufficient reason to pray for, for inanimate things; for to Him belong all the trees and farms of all men. See what has been said ( Jeremiah 20:14, and Job 3:1). In like manner, S. Francis cursed a juniper tree planted by blessed Juniper, one of his fi...

Cornelius a Lapide

AD 1637
se14. And the blind and the lame came to Him, and He healed them, that by these miracles He might show Himself to be Messiah, yea God; and so that He had been rightly honoured by the acclamations of the people and the pomp. For Isaiah had foretold ( Isaiah 35:5) that Messiah would work such miracles. And they were worthy both of Christ and the Temple, and Christ substituted them for the covetous traffic in cattle. ...
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Cornelius a Lapide

AD 1637
se22. And all things whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive. Believing, i.e, if ye shall believe and be confident that ye shall obtain those things from God, according to James 1:6. "Let him ask in faith, nothing doubting." See what is there said. Well speaks S. Bernard (Serm15 in Psal. Qui habitat), expounding tropologically the words of God to Joshua , chap. i. "Whatsoever place your foot shall tread upon shall be yours." "Your foot," he says "is your faith, and let it go as far as it will, it shall obtain, if so be that it be fixed wholly upon God, that it be firm, and stumble not." The reason priori is the liberality and munificence of God, which does not suffer itself to be surpassed by our hope, but far surpasses and transcends it. ...

Cornelius a Lapide

AD 1637
se23. And when he was come into the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came unto Him as he was teaching, and said, By what authority doest thou these things? And who gave thee this authority? By what power (Vulg.cf0 <span class="large emphasis bold" name="23-46
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Cornelius a Lapide

AD 1637
se16. And said unto Him, hearest Thou what these say? And Jesus saith unto them, Yea; have ye never read, out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast perfected praise? ( Psalm 8:3.) The Hebrew is ימדת עז iissadta oz, i.e, hast founded strength. Aquila, hast laid foundations, power; Sixtine edition, Thou hast constituted strength; Tertuilian (Lib. de anima, cap19), Thou hast furnished praise; Syriac, Thou hast directed praise; Arabic, Thou hast prepared praise. This Isaiah , Thou hast proved, confirmed, made Thy power perfectly laudable, when out of the mouth of infants, not having the use of their tongues, and not yet able to give utterance, or to speak, Thou dost express Thy praise and glory. For thou hast caused that on Palm Sunday infants with the people should cry out to Christ, Hosanna to the Son of David. S. Hilary, and Auctor Imperfecti, understand by infants boys already able to speak and give utterance. With more truth S. Chrysostom, Euthymius, and Theophylact thin...
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Cornelius a Lapide

AD 1637
se21. Jesus answered and said unto them, Verily I say unto you, If ye have faith (that excellent and efficacious faith, like a grain of mustard seed, of which, Matthew 17:19) and doubt not, ye shall not only do this which is done to the fig tree (that which ye see has been done by Me, as is plain from the Greek), but also ye shall say to this mountain, Lift up (viz. thyself, as follows, in the Greek άρθητι, i.e, as the Syriac, be lifted up, be rooted up out of the earth) and be thou cast (Gr. βλήθητι, Syr. fall) into the sea, it shall be done. And shall not hesitate, Gr. μὴ διακριθη̃τε, i.e, shall not dispute, as doubting and hesitating; shall not distinguish whether what ye ask be easy, or hard to be done. For many, because they think what they ask arduous and difficult, are in doubt whether they shall obtain it from God, and so do not obtain it. But they do not distinguish between easy and difficult, thinking that what is difficult to them is easy to God,...
2 mins11/15

Cornelius a Lapide

AD 1637
se10. And when He was come into Jerusalem, all the city was moved, saying, Who is this? Who with so great honour, applause, congratulation, as it were the King of Israel, enters into Jerusalem, whilst the Scribes and Pharisees are looking on—yea, the Roman soldiers of Tiberius Caesar, who would not suffer another than Cæsar to be called King of Judæa ? Wherefore Christ, now bearing Himself as a king, would have come into peril of death, had not Hebrews , by the power of His Divinity, struck not only all the Jews but the Romans with amazement, and rendered them as it were thunder-struck, so that no one should dare to lay hands upon Him, nay, or even think of such a thing. So Abulensis and others. But the people said, This is Jesus, the prophet of Nazareth, of Galilee. Greek, ÏŒ προφήτης, i.e, that prophet, par excellence, who far surpasses and transcends all the prophets in preaching, sanctity, power, and miracles. Therefore He is Messias, the King of Israel. Of Nazareth: for a...
13 mins12/15

George Leo Haydock

AD 1849
Bethphage, was a village of the priests, and signifies the house of figs and dates, or the house of the fountain, or of the flatterer, situated on the declivity of Mount Olivet, about a mile to the east of Jerusalem, a sabbath-day's journey. As Bethphage was probably so called from the fig and date trees growing there, Mount Olivet was from the great number of olive-trees: ton elaion. The triumphal entry of Jesus Christ into Jerusalem from Bethania, was on the first day of the week, answering to our Sunday, the very day on which, by the appointment of the law, (Exodus xii. 3.) the lamb was brought hither, to be sacrificed at the Passover. To shew, moreover, that in himself all the figures of the old law were realized, he chose that very night for the institution of the Passover of the new law, the blessed eucharist, which was appointed for the immolation of the paschal lamb in the old law, and the very day for the redemption of the world, in which the people of God had formerly been re...

John Chrysostom

AD 407
And yet He had often entered Jerusalem before, but never with so much circumstance. What then is the cause? It was the beginning then of the dispensation; and neither was He very well known, nor the time of His passion near; wherefore He mixed with them with less distinction, and more disguising Himself. For He would not have been held in admiration, had He so appeared, and He would have excited them to greater anger. But when He had both given them sufficient proof of His power, and the cross was at the doors, He makes Himself then more conspicuous, and does with greater circumstance all the things that were likely to inflame them. For it was indeed possible for this to have been done at the beginning also; but it was not profitable nor expedient it should be so. ...

John Chrysostom

AD 407
He had often entered Jerusalem before, but never with so much at stake. Why were earlier visits different? They came early in the dispensation, when he was not very well known. The time of his Passion had not drawn near. He mixed in without distinction, keeping his identity under wraps. Had he appeared in this mode earlier, he would not have been held in high esteem. He would only have excited them to greater anger. But by now he had given them sufficient proof of his miraculous power. The cross was at the door. He now makes himself more conspicuous. He does not hesitate to do things that were likely to inflame them. All this happens with dramatic impact. It might have been possible for these things to have been done earlier, but it was neither profitable or expedient. The Gospel of Matthew, Homily ...

Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. - 2 Peter 1:20

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