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NPNF1-06. St. Augustine: Sermon on the Mount; Harmony of the Gospels; Homilies on the Gospels
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Chapter XXXIV.—Of the Passage in Which It is Said that the Disciples Plucked the Ears of Corn and Ate Them; And of the Question as to How Matthew, Mark, and Luke are in Harmony with Each Other with Respect to the Order of Narration There.

81. Matthew continues his history in the following terms: “At that time Jesus went on the Sabbath-day through the corn; and His disciples were an hungered, and began to pluck the ears of corn, and to eat;” and so forth, on to the words, “For the Son of man is Lord even of the Sabbath-day.”10001000     Matt. xii. 1–8. This is also given both by Mark and by Luke, in a way precluding any idea of antagonism.10011001     Mark ii. 23–28; Luke vi. 1–5. At the same time, these latter do not employ the definition “at that time.” That fact, consequently, may perhaps make it the more probable that Matthew has retained the order of actual occurrence here, and that the others have kept by the order of their own recollections; unless, indeed, this phrase “at that time” is to be taken in a broader sense, that is to say, as indicating the period at which these many and various incidents took place. 10021002     [Clearly the Sabbath controversies must be placed before the Sermon on the Mount, as indicated by the order of Mark and Luke.—R.]


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