25It is enough for the disciple that he be as his master, and the servant as his lord. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebub, how much more shall they call them of his household?
25 Verse 25. It is enough for the disciple that he be as his
master] Can any man who pretends to be a scholar or disciple of
Jesus Christ, expect to be treated well by the world? Will not
the world love its own, and them only? Why, then, so much
impatience under sufferings, such an excessive sense of injuries,
such delicacy? Can you expect any thing from the world better
than you receive? If you want the honour that comes from it,
abandon Jesus Christ, and it will again receive you into its
bosom. But you will, no doubt, count the cost before you do this.
Take the converse, abandon the love of the world, &c., and God
will receive you.
Beelzebub] This name is variously written in the MSS.
Beelzebaul, Beelzeboun, Beelzebud, but there is a vast majority in
favour of the reading Beelzebul, which should, by all means, be
inserted in the text instead of Beelzebub. See the reasons below,
and see the margin.
It is supposed that this idol was the same with
Baalzebub the god fly, worshipped at Ekron, 2Ki 1:2, &c., who
had his name changed afterwards by the Jews to Baal zebul,
the dung god, a title expressive of the utmost contempt. It seems
probable that the worship of this vile idol continued even to the
time of our Lord; and the title, being applied by the Jews to our
blessed Lord, affords the strongest proof of the inveteracy of
Dr. Lightfoot has some useful observations on this subject,
which I shall take the liberty to subjoin.
"For the searching out the sense of this horrid blasphemy, these
things are worthy observing,
"I. Among the Jews it was held, in a manner, for a matter of
religion, to reproach idols, and to give them odious names. R.
Akibah saith, Idolatry pollutes, as it is said, Thou shalt cast
away the (idol) as something that is abominable, and thou shalt
say to it, Get thee hence: (Isa 30:22.) R. Lazar saith, Thou
shalt say to it, Get thee hence: that which they call the face of
God, let them call the face of a dog. That which they call
ein cos, the FOUNTAIN OF A CUP, let them call
ein kuts, the FOUNTAIN OF TOIL (or of flails.) That which they
call gediyah, FORTUNE, let them call geliya,
a STINK, &c. That town which sometimes was called Bethel, was
afterwards called Bethaven. See also the tract Schabbath.
"II. Among the ignominious names bestowed upon idols, the
general and common one was Zebul, DUNG, or a DUNGHILL. 'Even
to them that have stretched out their hands bezebul in a
dunghill, (that is, in an idol temple, or in idolatry,) there is
hope. Thou canst not bring them (into the Church) because they
have stretched forth their hands bezebul, in a dunghill. But yet
you cannot reject them, because they have repented.' And a little
after, He that sees them dunging, (that is, sacrificing,)
to an idol, let him say, Cursed be he that sacrifices to a strange
god. Let them, therefore, who dare, form this word in Matthew
into Beelzebub. I am so far from doubting that the Pharisees
pronounced the word BEELZEBUL, and that Matthew so wrote it, that
I doubt not but the sense fails if it be writ otherwise.
"III. Very many names of evil spirits, or devils, occur in the
Talmud, which it is needless here to mention. Among all the
devils, they esteemed that devil the worst, the foulest, as it
were, the prince of the rest, who ruled over the idols, and by
whom oracles and miracles were given forth among the Heathens and
idolaters. And they were of this opinion for this reason, because
they held idolatry, above all other things, chiefly wicked and
abominable, and to be the prince and head of evil. This demon
they called Baal-zebul, not so much by a proper name, as
by one more general and common; as much as to say, the lord of
idolatry: the worst devil, and the worst thing: and they called
him the prince of devils, because idolatry is the prince (or
chief) of wickedness."