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THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO MATTHEW - Chapter 14 - Verse 25

Verse 25. And in the fourth watch of the night. The Jews anciently divided the night into three divisions of four hours each. The first of these watches is mentioned in La 2:19; the middle watch in Jud 7:19 and the morning watch in Ex 14:24. In the time of our Saviour: they divided the night into four watches;the fourth having been introduced by the Romans. These watches consisted of three hours each. The first commenced at six, and continued till nine; the second from nine to twelve; the third from twelve to three; and the fourth from three to six. The first was called evening; the second, midnight; the third, cock-crowing; the fourth, morning, Mr 13:35. It is probable that the term watch was given to each of these divisions, from the practice of placing sentinels around the camp in time of war, or in cities, to watch or guard the camp or city, and that they were at first relieved three times in the night, but under the Romans four times. It was in the last of these watches, or between three and six in the morning, that Jesus appeared to the disciples; so that he had spent most of the night alone on the mountain in prayer.

Walking on the sea. A manifest and wonderful miracle. It was a boisterous sea. It was in a dark night. The little boat was four or five miles from the shore, tossed by the billows.

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