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Verse 1. After these things. After the appointment of the twelve apostles, and the transactions recorded in the previous chapters.

Verse 1. Other seventy. Seventy others besides the apostles. They were appointed for a different purpose from the apostles. The apostles were to be with him; to hear his instructions; to be witnesses of his miracles, his sufferings, his death, his resurrection and ascension, that they might there go and proclaim all these things to the world. The seventy were sent out to preach immediately, and chiefly where he himself was about to come. They were appointed for a temporary object. They were to go into the villages and towns, and prepare the way for his coming. The number seventy was a favourite number among the Jews. Thus the family of Jacob that came into Egypt consisted of seventy, Ge 46:27. The number of elders that Moses appointed to aid him was the same, Nu 11:16,25. The number which composed the great Sanhedrim, or council of the nation, was the same. It is not improbable that our Saviour appointed this number with reference to the fact that it so often occurred among the Jews, or after the example of Moses, who appointed seventy to aid him in his work; but it is evident that the office was temporary—that it had a specific design —and of course that it would be improper to attempt to find now a continuation, of it, or a parallel to it, in the Christian ministry.

Two and two. There was much wisdom in sending them in this manner. It was done, doubtless, that they might aid one another by mutual counsel, and that they might sustain and comfort one another in their persecutions and trials. Our Lord in this showed the propriety of having a religious friend, who would be a confidant and help. Every Christian, and especially every Christian minister, needs such a friend, and should seek some one to whom he can unbosom himself, and with whom he can mingle his feelings and prayers.

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