The land of Zebulun, and the land of Naphtali, by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles;
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George Leo Haydock
St. Matthew has omitted in this place part of the prophecy, (Isaias ix.) because it was not to his purpose. He has likewise given us the mystical, though still true, interpretation of the prophecy, which was written in the first instance to foretell the deliverance of Jerusalem from Senacherib, in the time of Ezechias. (1 Kings, xix.) (Jansenius)
But mark, I pray you, how in every case when He is about to depart unto the Gentiles, He has the occasion given Him by Jews. For so in this instance, by plotting against His forerunner, and casting him into prison, they thrust out Christ into the Galilee of the Gentiles. For to show that He neither speaks of the Jewish nation by a part of it, nor signifies obscurely all the tribes; mark how the Prophet distinguishes that place, saying The land of Nephthalim, by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles, the people which sat in darkness, saw great light: by darkness here not meaning that which is sensible, but men's errors and ungodliness. Wherefore he also added, They which sat in the region and shadow of death, to them light is sprung up. For that you might learn that neither the light nor the darkness which he speaks of are sensible, in discoursing of the light, he called it not merely light, but a great light which elsewhere he expresses by the word, True: John 1:9 ...