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Verse 34. Simeon blessed them. Joseph and Mary. On them he sought the blessing of God.

Is set. Is appointed or constituted for that, or such will be he effect of his coming.

The fall. The word fall here denotes misery, suffering, disappointment, or ruin. There is a plain reference to the passage where it is said that he should be a stone of stumbling and a rock of offence, Isa 8:14,15. Many expected a temporal prince, and in this they were disappointed. They loved darkness rather than light, and rejected him, and fell unto destruction. Many that were proud were brought low by his preaching. They fell from the vain and giddy height of their own self-righteousness, and were humbled before God, and then, through him, rose again to a better righteousness and to better hopes. The nation also rejected him and put him to death, and, as a judgment, fell into the hands of the Romans. Thousands were led into captivity, and thousands perished. The nation rushed into ruin, the temple was destroyed, and the people were scattered into all the nations. See Ro 9:32,33; 1 Pe 2:8; 1 Co 1:23,24.

And rising again. The word "again" is not expressed in the Greek. It seems to be supposed, in our translation, that the same persons would fall and rise again; but this is not the meaning of the passage. It denotes that many would be ruined by his coming, and that many others would be made happy or be saved. Many of the poor and humble, that were willing to receive him, would obtain pardon of sin and peace—would rise from their sins and sorrows here, and finally ascend to eternal life.

And for a sign, &c. The word sign here denotes a conspicuous or distinguished object, and the Lord Jesus was such an object of contempt and rejection by all the people. He was despised, and his religion has been the common mark or sign for all the wicked, the profligate, and the profane, to curse, and ridicule, and oppose. Comp. Isa 8:18; Ac 28:22. Never was a prophecy more exactly fulfilled than this. Thousands have rejected the gospel and fallen into ruin; thousands are still falling of those who are ashamed of Jesus; thousands blaspheme him, deny him, speak all manner of evil against him, and would crucify him again if he were in their hands; but thousands also by him are renewed, justified, and raised up to life and peace.

{q} "fall" Isa 8:14; Ro 9:32,33; 1 Co 1:23,24; 2 Co 2:16; 1 Pe 2:7,8

{r} "spoken against" Ac 28:22

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