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mark, learn, and inwardly digest | other, as Christ also received us them; that by patience, and com- to (b) the glory of God. Now] fort of thy holy Word, we may say that Jesus Christ was a minister embrace and ever hold fast the of the circumcision for the truth blessed hope of everlasting life, of God, to confirm the promises which thou hast given us in our
made unto the fathers ; And that Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen. the Gentiles might glorify God
for his mercy; as it is written, The Epistle. Rom. xv. 4. () “ For (i) this cause I will confess Whatsoever things were writ- “ to thee among the Gentiles, and ten aforetime were written for
sing unto thy Name." And our learning, that we through | again he saith,
again he saith, “ (k) Rejoice, ye patience and comfort of the Scrip- " Gentiles, with his people.' 5. tures might have hope. Now And again, “(1) Praise the Lord,
the God of patience and conso- ye Gentiles; and laud him, lation grant you to be (g) like- “ all ye people.” And again,
minded one toward another, ac- Esaias saith, " (m) There shall be 6. cording to Christ Jesus ; that ye a root of Jesse, and he that may with one mind and one
“ shall rise to reign over the mouth glorify God, even the “ Gentiles ; in him shall the
Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. " Gentiles trust." Now the God 7. Wherefore receive ye one an- of hope fill you with all joy and
(5) Of the Converts at Rome, some thought themselves still bound to ob. serve the mosaical ordinances, and to make a difference in days and meats, &c.; others considered themselves freed from such restraints. Saint Paul's object is to prevent all dissensions between them upon such points, to take away from Jews and Gentiles all occasions of contest, and to induce both to unite cordially in glorifying God. He reminds them, that it was to confirm the promises made unto the Fathers, that Christ's ministry was amongst the Jews; and that it was of mere mercy to the Gentiles, and not of right, that the benefit of our Saviour's coming was extended to the Gentiles, though this was also foretold in many parts of Scripture. That neither Jew nor Gentile therefore was to overvalue himself, inasmuch as it was not of right as from their own merit that either was admitted to the blessings of Christianity, but they were offered to the one because of a promise to that effect from God to their forefathers, and to the other because of the predetermined mercy and grace of God, and that neither Jew nor Gentile should despise the other, because God, who best could judge, had thought
each worthy of having these blessings offered to them.
“ (8) Like-minded,” i.e. giving up to your neighbour in unessential points to produce unanimity, “ that they might is with one mind and one mouth glorify 6 God.” He had just been stating, that “they who were strong should bear “ the infirmities of the weak, and not “ please themselves ;” that “ each should “ please his neighbour for his good to “ edification ;" and that “ “ Jesus pleased not himself.” He here therefore
proposes that they should fol. low this his example, and be like-minded, &c. according to him, that is, as he was, studying to prevent dissensions, not seeking his own gratification. In Philipp.iv.2. St. Paul beseeches Euodias and Syntyche to be of the “ same mind in the Lord;" and Rom. xii. 16. he exhorts the converts to be of the same “ mind one towards an“ other," i e. to have "unanimity."
(b)" To the glory, &c. “ making « God's glory the object."
(i) “ For this cause, &c.” This is transcribed from Ps.xvii.49. The cause re: lates to God's protection mentioned there.
(6) “ Rejoice." Deut.xxxii. 43.
peace in believing, that ye may perplexity; the sea and the abound in hope, through - waves roaring; men's hearts 26. power of the Holy Ghost. 6 failing them for fear, and for
looking after those things which The Gospel. Luke xxi. 25. (n) " are coming on the earth : for « And there shall be signs in “ the powers of heaven shall be " the sun, and in the moon, and « shaken. And then shall they 27. 6 in the stars; and upon the see the Son of man (0) coming " earth distress of nations, with “ in a cloud with power and great
(1) This is part of our Saviour's account of what should precede the great event of his vengeance upon
of his religion, so often referred to as “ day of the Lord," “ the coming of the “ Lord,” &c. According to Isaiah ixi.2. the Messiah was to proclaim, not only " the acceptable year of the Lord," but also “ The day of vengeance of our • God.” Joel ii. 1 to 11. speaks at large of the terrors of the day of the Lord, and of the strength of the people who should be employed as instruments in God's hand, to inflict them. Zeph. i. 12 to 18. mentions the great day of the Lord as a day of “wrath, a day of trouble " and distress, a day of wasteness and “ desolation, a day of darkness and “ gloominess, a day of clouds and thick “ darkness, a day of the trumpet and “ alarm against the fenced cities and « against the high towers," and says, that “ the whole land shall be devoured “ by the fire of God's jealousy, for he " shall make even a speedy riddance of u all them that dwell in the land.” In Zech. xii. 8, 9. “ It shall come to pass, " that in all the land, saith the Lord, two
parts therein shall be cut off and die,” and Malachi, besides the passage Mal. iii.2. (ante, p.26.) says, in ch.iv. “Behold the “ day cometh that shall burn as an oven, " and all the proud, yea, and all that do " wickedly shall be stubble; and the
day that cometh shall burn them up, " saith the Lord of Hosts, that it shall « leave them neither root nor branch ; " but unto you that fear my name shall “ the Sun of Righteousness arise, with “ healing in his wings.” Lastly, John the Baptist describes our Saviour, Matt. ii. 12. as one “ whose fan is in his “ hand, and he will thoroughly purgė “ his floor, and gather his wheat into the
garner ; but he will burn up the chaff “ with unquenchable fire." See also Ps. ii. 9. and xxi. 8, 9. The character,
therefore, of the day of the Lord, and the tremendous vengeance then to be exe. cuted, were strongly foretold, and it was natural that the people should be desirous of knowing more particularly when this great event should take place, and what would be the marks of its approach. Our Saviour had told them, that the days should come in which there should not be left one stone upon another in their magnificent temple" which should not be thrown down; and they took that occasion to ask him, “ When should “ these things be, and what sign would " there be when these things should come to pass
In answer to this question, he gives the account of which the
passage selected for this day's Gospel is part The destruction of Jerusalem accordingly occurred about 37 years after our Saviour's crucifixion; an immense number of Jews, 1,400,000, were slain there and in other parts of Judæa, and the temple was so utterly destroyed, that its very foundations were dug up. A full account of the destruction of Jerusalem is to be met with in the Jewish writer Josephus. See post, note on Matt.
(6) * Coming in a cloud.” When the v. 37. high priest adjured our Saviour to say whether he was the Christ, the Son of God Matt.xxvi.63.our Saviour told him, that hereafter they should " see the Son of “ Man sitting on the right hand of Power, " and coming in the clouds of heaven." Both passages perhaps refer to Dan. vii. 13: “ I saw in the night visions ; and be
hold, one like the Son of Man came “ with the clouds of heaven, and came “ to the Antient of Days" (viz. God), " and there was given him dominion, and “ glory, and a kingdom, that all people, “ nations, and languages should serve • him: his dominion is an everlasting “ dominion, which shall not pass away, " and his kingdom that which shall not
28. “ glory. And when these things “ but my words shall not pass
“ begin to come to pass, then away.
c heads; for your (P) redemption
Third Sunday in Advent. to them a parable; “. Behold,
The Collect. “ the figtree, and all the trees; || O LORD Jesu Christ, who at 30. “ when they now shoot forth, ye | thy first coming didst send thy
see and know of your own messenger to prepare thy way “ selves that summer is now nigh | before thee;
before thee; Grant that the 31. at hand. So likewise
So likewise ye, when ministers and stewards of thy mysye see these things come to teries may likewise so prepare and pass, know ye that the King
that the King- make ready thy way, by turning “ dom of God is nigh at hand. the hearts of the disobedient to Verily I say unto you,
the wisdom of the just ; that at generation shall not pass away || thy second coming to judge the “ till all be fulfilled. Heaven world, we may be found an ac« and earth shall pass away ; ceptable people in thy sight, who
“ be destroyed :" and the meaning in language is the same as here, “This geboth passages may be, that what then “ neration shall not pass, till all these occurs shall be decisive proof from God “ things be fulfilled." St. Matthew and that Jesus Christ was the true Messiah. St. John, from being constant attendants
See post, note on Matt. xxiv. 30. on our Saviour, were not likely to be v. 28. - (0) “Your redemption.” The destruc. deceived as to his words, and Mat
tion of their enemies and persecutors thew's Gospel was published before would of itself make a material difference the destruction of Jerusalem, and so were in their condition. See note on the word St. Mark's and St. Luke's, which con. “Salvation,” Rom. xiii. 11. ante, p.25. tain similar passages. Mark xiii. 30.
(9) “ This generation, &c.” This was Luke ix. 27. The accomplishment, therea pledge which in a limited time would fore, of this vengeance, or permitting its bring our Saviour's pretensions to a de- accomplishment, within the period our cisive test. He claimed to be the Mes- Saviour specified, is an attestation by siah, and as one proof of it took
God himself that our Saviour really was himself repeatedly to say, that before what he pretended to be. It is of use to the generation of men then living should advert to the proofs of the truth of our be removed from the earth, this great religion, because it enables us to give a event of his coming should occur. In reason for the hope that is in us, and Matt. x. 23. he assures his apostles, where such abundant proof is supplied, " that they shall not have gone over the God has shewn that he expects belief. « cities of Israel till the Son of Man The signal vengeance he took upon « shall come.” In Matt. xvi. 28. he those who did not attend to the proofs says, " there be some standing here, he gaye, or opposed the progress of the “ 'which shall not taste of death, till they religion he sanctioned, should teach us “ see the Son of Man coming in his what we may expect if we reject this re“ kingdom.” In speaking of St. John, ligion, or act in defiance of its precepts. John xxi. 22. our Saviour says, “ If I || God, who is the same yesterday, to-day, " will that he tarry till I come, what is and for ever, will probably in his own " that to thee;" and accordingly St. time, and in his own way, punish as John survived the destruction of Jerusa- severely the unbelievers and opposers lem, that great coming of our Lord : of his religion of other times. Bishop and in Matt. xxiv. 34. where that Apostle Porteus's Lectures on the parallel Progives his account of what our Saviour phecy in St. Matthew are well worth said as to the signs of his coming, the consulting. See Lectures 19 and 20.
livest and reignest with the Father tified: but he that judgeth me is and the Holy Spirit, ever one
the Lord. Therefore (y) judge no- 5. God, world without end. Amen. thing before the time, until(z) the
Lord come, who both will bring The Epistle. i Cor. iv. I.(r) to light the hidden things of darkLet a man so account of us, as
ness, and will make manifest the of the (s)ministers of Christ, and
counsels of the hearts: and then
shall stewards of the mysteries of God.
every man have (a) praise of
God. 2. Moreover, it is required in stew
ards, that a man be found (t)faith3. ful. But with me it is a very small
The Gospel. Matt. xi. 2. thing that I should be judged (u) Now when (6) John had heard in of
you, or of man's judge the prison the works of Christ, he 4. ment; yea, I judge not mine own sent (c) two of his disciples, and self: for I know nothing (x) by
said unto him, “ Art thou he (d) 3• myself; yet am I not hereby jus- " that should come, or do we look
(r) St. Paul had blamed the Corinthian converts in the preceding Chapter for ranking themselves under different teachers, one saying, “ I am of Paul, another, “ I am of Apollos, a third I am of Ce" phas or Peter," and so on ; and he therefore desires them to think of the apostles, not as persons seeking their own glory, and wishing to have sects after their own names, but as ministers and subordinate officers, looking to the glory of God and Jesus Christ only, and wishing to unite all the converts under Christ alone.
(s) " Ministers," i.e. only as ministers, acting for another master, even Christ.
(1) “ Faithful,” and therefore not assuming to themselves what belongs to
(u) “ Judged,” i.e. perhaps “ esti“mated, valued.”
(x) “ By myself," rather, “against my“ self.” Hamm. on N.T.519. i Clarke's Attrib. 258. The meaning perhaps is, though I know nothing against myself, that is not a ground on which I can consider myself justified; for I must be judged by God, who, according to i John iii. 21. “ is greater than our
“ hearts, and knoweth all things." 0.5.
( “ Judge nothing." See post, note on Luke vi. 37. 0.5. (z) “ Until the Lord come.” This
might allude to the great coming of our Saviour to take vengeance on the unbelieving Jews, &c. which our Saviour had predicted should occur before that generation, the generation of men then
living, should pass away.
(a)“ Praise, &c.” Whoever really was v. 5.
(6) John," i. e. the Baptist.
(c).“ Sent.” It is supposed that John sent this message not for his own sake, or to satisfy any doubts he had, but for the sake of his Apostles; he had seen the Spirit of God descending on cur Saviour at his baptism, and had heard the voice from heaven, saying, “This is my beloved Son, "in whom I am well pleased.” Matt. iii. 16, 17. How then could he doubt?
(d) “ He that should come.” There was a general expectation at this time of the Messiah's coming : Daniel had stated expressly (Dan. ix. 25.) that from the going forth of the commandment“ to restore “ and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah “ the Prince, should be seven weeks, and “ threescore and two weeks,” and this time (reckoning a day for a year, which is the method in the calculation of prophetic times) was nearly, if not fully arrived. This expectation, with the mistake that the Messiah's kingdom was to be of this world, probably occasioned the well known passages in Suetonius,Tacitus, and Josephus, that “the sacred books of “the Jews foretold, that at that time some - one from Judæa should obtain the empire " of the world." 7'here are also passages in Virgil, which probably owe their origin to this cause. See Note on John i. 21. post. and Virgil's 4th Eclogue.
“ for another ?” Jesus answered “ written, (k) Behold, I send m and said unto them, “ Go and “ messenger before thy face “ shew John again those things
“ which shall prcpare thy way < which
" before thee."
are cleansed, and the deaf Fourth Sunday in Advent.
The Collect. " and the poor have the Gospel O LORD, raise up (we pray thee 6. “ preached to them. And blessed thy power, and come among us
" is he, whosoever(8) shall not be and with great might succour us; 7.
“ offended in me.” And, as they that whereas, through our sins departed, Jesus began to say unto and wickedness, we are sore let the multitudes concerning John, and hindered in running the race “ What went ye out into the that is set before us, thy bounti
66 wilderness to see ? a (h) reed ful grace and mercy may speedily 8. “
« shaken with the wind ? But help and deliver us, through the 6 what went ye out for to see? satisfaction of thy Son our Lord;
a man clothed in soft raiment ? to whom with thee and the Holy “ Behold, they that wear soft Ghost be honour and glory,
clothing are (i)in kings' houses. | world without end. Amen.
see? a prophet ? yea, I say unto The Epistle. Phil. iv.
. Resoice in the Lord alway: and « For this is he of whom it is again I say, Rejoice. Let your
(e) “ See.” According to Luke vii.21. whilst John's Disciples were with Jesus “ he cured many of their infirmities and “ plagues, and of evil spirits, and unto
many that were blind he gave sight," so that he might properly refer to what they saw as well as what they might
refers them to his works because of their
God with a recompence: he will come and save you: then the eyes of “ the blind shall be opened, and the ears u of the deaf shall be unstopped, then “ shall the lame man leap as an hart, and “ the tongue of the dumb sing.” And in Isaiah xvi. 1. he says, “ The Spirit of the “ Lord is upon me, because the Lord u hath anointed me to preach good tid. “ ings unto the meek,” &c. &c. His performing the miracles was a decisive proof that God was with him ; but it
added some weight to these miraculous acts that they corresponded with what the prophet had foretold.
(8) "Shall not be offended in,”i.e.shall boldly and firmly adhere to me, without being deterred by persecution or danger.
() “A reed,” &c. that is a mere trifle.
(i) “ In kings' houses" and therefore not in the wilderness.
(k)“Behold,” &c. This is the prophecy in Mal. ïïi. 1. “ Behold I will send my
messenger, and he shall prepare the way “ before me and the Lord whom ye seek (i. e. the Messiah) “ shall suddenly come
to his temple, even the Messenger of “ the covenant, whom yè delight in: “ behold he shall come, saith the Lord “ of hosts." See an able Commentary upon this prophecy, Chandler's Defence of Christianity, first ed. p. 63. The way was prepared by reforming their lives, and by that means fitting them to receive the precepts of Christianity, and to undergo all dangers, &c. in adhering to it.