Page images
PDF
EPUB

they (7) of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost; 46. for they heard them speak with tongues (m), and magnify God. Then answered Peter, 47. "Can "any man forbid water, that these "should not be baptized, which "have received the Holy Ghost "as well as we?" 48. And he commanded them to be baptized in the name (n) of the Lord. Then prayed they him to tarry certain days.

() v. 45. "They of the circumcision," i. e. "the Jews."

(m) v. 46. "Tongues," i. e. "languages "they never learnt.'

(n) v.48. "Of the Lord, 75 Kuple," i. e. "of Jesus Christ;" but assuredly, not in his name alone, but according to the form he had prescribed, (Matt. xxviii. 19.) "in "the name of the Father, and of the Son, "and of the Holy Ghost." See Graves's Trinity, 16 to 19.

(o) v. 16. "Gave, &c." God shewed his abhorrence of sin, by requiring such a sacrifice; and he evinced his regard for man's salvation, by furnishing the victim, and accepting the atonement. According to Isaiah liii. 5. "He was wounded for "our transgressions, he was bruised for "our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him, and with his stripes "we are healed." So 1 John iv. 9. "In "this was manifested the love of God to"wards us, because that God sent his "only begotten Son into the world, that "we might live through him."

(p) "Only begotten Son." Him who alone stood in that relation to God the Father in which a human son stands to a human father, of the same nature, and with the same powers.

con

(q) v. 18. "Believeth on," i. e. " "fideth in, trusteth to, relies upon,"

ú, making Christ's atonement, not his own sufficiency, his only ground for hope.

(r)"Not condemned," i. e. 66 escapes "condemnation; is exempted from the

The Gospel. John iii. 16. GOD so loved theworld, that be (0) gave his (p) only-begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. 17. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. 18. He that believeth (q) on him is not (r) condemned; but he that believeth not is condemned already, because (s) he hath not believed in the name of the onlybegotten Son of God. 19. And this is (t) the condemnation, that

"condemnation to which he would other"wise have been liable."

(s) "Because, &c." If all have sinned, (and who has not ?) if condemnation is the ordinary consequence of sin, and faith in Christ the only condition upon which God will exempt from condemnation, it follows, that he who will not perform the condition (by believing in Christ) must continue in a state of condemnation. This corresponds with what St. Peter says, Acts iv. 12. "Neither is there salvation in any other: "for there is none other name under hea

ven given among men whereby we must "be saved." And "how shall we escape, "if we neglect so great salvation? Hebr. « ii. 3."

(t) v. 19. "This is the condemnation," i. e. (perhaps)" this justifies it, this shews "its propriety and reasonableness, that it "is sin only that obstructs belief; who"ever has a good disposition, is ready to "walk in God's commandments, and to do "his will, must be convinced: so decisive "are the proofs, it is only where the dis

66

position to examine and judge is ob"structed by sinful habits and sinful pro"pensities, that belief can be withheld." If when our Saviour has put into our hands the power of driving out Satan, we on our parts do not choose to co-operate, but rather prepare ourselves to give him again a welcome reception, we have no right to complain if we are worse off than if this power had not been given. Matt. xii. 45. (See post,-) 2 Cor. iv. 3, 4. See also 1 Till. 29.

light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. 20. For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved: 21. But he that doeth (u) truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest that they are wrought in God.

Tuesday in Whitsun-Week. For the Epistle. Acts viii. 14. WHEN the apostles which were

at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John (x): 15. who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost: 16. (for as yet he was fallen upon none of them; only they were baptized in the name of the (y) Lord Jesus.) 17. Then (3) laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost.

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

(z) v. 14. “John,” i. e. "the Evangelist." (y) v. 16. "Of the Lord." 170. note on Acts x. 48.

See ante,

(z) v. 17. "Laid, &c." This was a point in which the apostles could not be deceived.

(a) A continuation of our Saviour's reproof to the Pharisees, after he had restored to sight the man that was born blind. The Pharisees had been questioning the man: and upon his inferring from the miracle that Jesus must be of God, had cast him out.

(6) v.1. "Not by the door, &c." i. e. as a clandestine intruder; one who does "not come in openly, or by the ordinary entrance, is naturally concluded to be a "thief and a robber; so may you fairly "conclude, that he does not come from

66

The Gospel. John x. 1. (a) VERILY, verily, I say unto you, "He that entereth (b) not by the "door into the sheepfold, but "climbeth up some other way, "the same is a thief and a robber. 2. But he that entereth in by "the door is the shepherd of the sheep. 3. To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear "his voice: and he calleth his "own sheep by name, and leadeth "them out. 4. And when he "putteth forth his own sheep, he

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

goeth before them, and the "sheep follow him: for they "know his voice. 5. And a stran

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small]

66

66

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

"God, whose works are such as God "would never sanction. On the contrary, as he who enters in by the door is rightly supposed to be the shepherd, so if my "works are such as none but one who came from God could do, you ought to "be convinced I really did come from "God. And I not only enter in by the "door,' (that is, do these works,) but "I am the door itself, (verse 7.); it is "through me alone that any can enter. "See infra, verse 7."

(c) v. 6. "Them," i. e. "the Pharisees."

(d) v. 7. "The door." Advancing one step farther. No other way to salvation but through him. So he says, (John xiv. 6.) "I am the way, and the truth, and the "life; no man cometh unto the Father, "but by me."

(e) v. 8. "All, &c." i. e. " persons who "pretended to be the Messiah; Impos"tors."

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

ALMIGHTY and everlasting God, who hast given unto us thy servants grace, by the confession of a true faith to acknowledge the glory of the eternal Trinity, and in the power of the divine Majesty to worship the Unity; We beseech thee, that thou wouldest keep us stedfast in this faith, and evermore defend us from all adversities; who livest and reignest, one God, world without end. Amen.

For the Epistle. Rev. iv. 1. AFTER this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven and the first voice which I

(g) “Thieves, &c." Coming to serve themselves at the expense of others. (h) v. 2. "In the spirit," i. e. "in a "vision, or trance;" spiritualized."

[ocr errors]

66

(i) “A throne, &c." This seat, and those of the twenty-four elders, &c. &c. correspond exactly with the form of the encampments in the wilderness. See infra, note on v.7. The throne answers to the tabernacle, the elders to the Levites and priests, and the beasts to the four camps of Israel. Mede, 37.

(k) v. 6. " Four beasts." These represent the Christian churches through the four quarters of the world. Mede, 35.

(4) v. 7. "A lion, &c." The Israelites

[ocr errors]

heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, "Come up hither, and I will shew "thee things which must be here“after.” 2. And immediately I was in the (h) spirit: and, behold, a throne (i) was set in heaven, and one sat on the throne. 3. And he that sat was to look upon like a jasper and a sardinestone: and there was a rainbow round about the throne, in sight like unto an emerald. 4. And round about the throne were four and twenty seats and upon the seats I saw four and twenty elders sitting, clothed in white raiment; and they had on their heads crowns of gold. 5. And out of the throne proceeded lightnings and thunderings and voices: and there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God. 6. And before the throne there was a sea of glass, like unto crystal and in the midst of the throne, and round about the throne, were four (k) beasts, full of eyes before and behind. 7. And the first beast was like a (1) lion, and the second beast like a calf, and the third beast had a face as

had four standards, that of Judah, Ephraim, Reuben, and Dan, and there were three tribes under each; Judah had the ensign of a lion, Ephraim that of an ox, Reuben that of a man, and Dan that of an eagle. In their encampments and marches in the wilderness, (according to Numb. ii.) Judah was to take the east, Ephraim the west, Reuben the south, and Dan the north; and the tabernacle and Levites were to be in the midst. Mede, 31, 32. So in Ezek. i. 10. the four living creatures which came from the north had the faces of a man towards the south, of an eagle towards the north, of a lion on one side, and of an ox on the other.

a man, and the fourth beast was like a flying eagle. 8. And the four beasts had each of them (m) six wings about him; and they were full of (n) eyes within: and they rest not day and night, saying, "Holy, (o) holy, holy, Lord "God Almighty, which was, and "is, and is to come." 9. And (p) when those beasts give glory and honour and thanks to him that sat on the throne, who liveth for ever and ever, 10. the four and twenty elders fall down before him that sat on the throne, and worship him that liveth for ever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying, 11. "Thou art "worthy, O Lord, to receive

(m) v. 8. "Six wings," to fly about every where to fulfil God's commands.

(n) "Of eyes," i. e. " sharpsighted," to understand God's mysteries. Mede, 36. (0) "Holy, &c." thrice repeated, as Is. vi. 3. Not, says Chrysostom, once or twice, or four times, but thrice, to manifest the one and equal glory of Father, Son and Holy Ghost. 3 Chrys. 909, 910. De Trinitate Sermo.

(p) v. 9. "When, &c." i. e. "when the "churches perform their services, the "elders fall down, &c." Mede, 36.

(q) v. 2. "By night," therefore probably "secretly, for fear of the Jews."

(r) v. 3. Verily, &c." An intimation to Nicodemus that a secret acknowledgment was insufficient; a public avowal, and an open service required: that he must be born again, come under new relations, and undertake new duties: that he must be born of water by receiving baptism from Christ, and so publicly enrolling himself into his service, and putting off all carnal habits; and that he must be born of the Spirit by sacrificing all temporal views, disregarding all temporal dangers, and embarking with all his heart in the cause of Christianity. See ante, 163. And this is agreeable to Matt. x. 32. & Luke xiv. 26. "Whosoever shall "confess me before men, him will I also "confess before my Father which is in

"glory and honour and power; "for thou hast created all things, "and for thy pleasure they are "and were created."

The Gospel. John iii. 1. THERE was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: 2. the same came to Jesus by (q) night, and said unto him, "Rabbi, we know that "thou art a teacher come from "God; for no man can do these "miracles that thou doest, except "God be with him." 3. Jesus answered and said unto him. Verily (r), verily, I say unto "thee, Except a man be born again (s), he cannot see the

66

66

66

"heaven: but whosoever shall deny me "before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven:" and "If any man come to me, and hate not, (in comparison to my service,) his father " and mother, and his wife and children, "and brethren and sisters, yea, and his "own life also, he cannot be my disciple."

66

(s)" Born again," i. e. "regenerate: "putting off all carnal habits and disposi"tions, and putting on spiritual ones." "Putting off, (according to Eph. iv. 22.) "the old man, which is corrupt, and put"ting on the new man, which after God " is created in righteousness and true ho"liness." The expressions of "being "renewed," " putting off the old man,' and "putting on the new man," or "putting on Christ," are not unfrequent. Thus, Eph. iv. 23. post, St. Paul tells the converts to put off the old man, and put on the new, and "to be renewed in "the spirit of your mind." So (Col. iii. 9. 10.) he speaks of them as having "put "off the old man with his deeds, and

[ocr errors]

66

having put on the new man, which is re"newed in knowledge, after the image of "him that created him, (viz. God.)" In Rom. xii. 2. he tells them to be "trans"formed in the renewing of their mind." And Rom. xiii. 14. he exhorts them to put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and not "make provision for the flesh, to fulfil

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

"the lusts thereof." In Gal. iii. 27. he reminds them, that " as many of them as "had been baptized into Christ, had put "on Christ." And Gal. vi. 15. he says, "In Christ Jesus neither circumcision "availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, "but a new creature." And 2 Cor. v. 17. "If any man be in Christ, "he is a new "creature." So in the Old Testament, Ezek. xi. 19. " I will give them one heart, "and I will put a new spirit within you: "and I will take the stony heart out of "their flesh, and will give them a heart "of flesh." And, Ezek. xxxvi. 25, 26. “ I "will sprinkle clean water upon you, and 66 you shall be clean, &c. a new heart also "will I give you, and a new spirit will I "put within you." So, Ps. li. 10. "Make "me a clean heart, O God, and renew a "right spirit within me." Persons admitted proselytes into the Jewish church were considered as putting off all their former relations, so that they who were before of kin to them were no longer to be considered so, and they were looked upon "new born."

as

(t) v. 6. "Is flesh," i. e. "is carnally disposed." "Is spirit," i. e. " is spirit"ually disposed." So Gal. v. 17. "The "flesh lusteth against the spirit, and the "spirit against the flesh." And Rom. viii. 5. They that are after the flesh, do "mind the things of the flesh, but they "that are after the spirit, the things of "the spirit; for to be carnally minded is "death."

(u) v. 3. & 7. "Again," or " from above,"

"bloweth where it listeth, and thou "hearest the sound thereof, but "canst not tell whence it cometh, "and whither it goeth: so is every "one that is born of the Spirit." 9. Nicodemus answered and said unto him, "How can these things "be ?" 10. Jesus answered and said unto him, "Art thou a mas"ter of Israel, and knowest not "these things? 11. Verily, verily, "I say unto thee, We speak that "(z) we do know, and testify "that we have seen; and ye re"ceive not our witness. 12. If "I have told you earthly (a)

avy. Our Lord might intentionally use a word which would admit of both senses.

(x) v. 8. "The wind," or "the Spirit." It is the same word (vɛμá) as at the end of the verse and in verses 5 & 6. is rendered "Spirit." The French translation, (Mons edit. 1672,) is "l'Esprit souffle."

(y)" Bloweth, &c." The meaning probably is this: "Inability to account for a "thing, is no conclusive proof it does not "exist. You cannot account for the wind: 66 you know not whence it cometh, or "whither it goeth; yet its existence, its "power, its operations, are plain. You "cannot account for the Spirit, yet are "its effects and influences clear; and if

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]
« PreviousContinue »