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20. Gospel, for which I am an ambassador in bonds (e); that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.
The Gospel. John iv. 46. THERE was a certain nobleman, whose son was sick at Caper47. naum. When he heard that Jesus was come out of Judea into Galilee (f), he went unto him, and besought him that he would come down, and heal his son: for he was at the point of death. 48. Then said Jesus unto him, "Except ye see signs and wonders, ye will not believe." The nobleman saith unto him, "Sir,
(e)" In bonds." This epistle, therefore, was written whilst St. Paul was a prisoner it is supposed to have been written A. D. 58. whilst he was at Rome.
(f) "Galilee." See ante 175. note on Luke v. I.
(g) "Watch," &c. He sets down here the "watching and enduring afflic"tions" as part of his duty. This implies pretty strongly that at this time the Christians were subject to many difficulties.
is again the second miracle that Jesus did, when he was come out of Judea into Galilee.
Saint Luke the Evangelist.
ALMIGHTY God, who calledst Luke the Physician, whose praise is in the Gospel, to be an Evangelist and Physician of the soul; May it please thee, that by the wholesome medicines of the doctrine delivered by him all the diseases of our souls may be healed, through the merits of thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
The Epistle. 2 Tim. iv. 5. (g) WATCH thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an Evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry. For I am now 6. ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I 7. have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: henceforth there is laid 8. up for me a crown (b) of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, shall give me at that day (i) and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing. Do thy diligence 9. to come shortly unto me: for 10.
Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world, and is departed unto Thessalonica; Crescens to Galatia, Titus unto 11. Dalmatia. Only Luke is with me. Take Mark (k), and bring him with thee; for he is profitable 12. to me for the ministry. And Tychicus have I sent to Ephesus. 13. The cloak that I left at Troas with
Carpus, when thou comest, bring with thee, and the books, but 14. especially the parchments. Alexander the coppersmith did me much evil: the Lord reward him 15. according to his works: of whom be thou ware also; for he hath greatly withstood our words.
The Gospel. Luke x. 1. THE Lord appointed other seventy also, and sent them two and two before his face into every city and place, whither he himself would come. Therefore said he 2. unto them, "The harvest (1) "truly is great, but the labourers
are few pray ye therefore the "Lord of the harvest, that he "would send forth labourers into "his harvest. Go your ways: "behold, I send you forth as "lambs (m) among wolves. Carry "neither purse, nor scrip, nor "shoes; and salute no man (n)
"The harvest," &c. i. e. many to (1) have the gospel preached unto them, or in a disposition to be converted, and but few-to preach.
(m) Lambs," &c. therefore you must expect difficulty and danger,
(n) Salute no man," i. e, waste no time in idle civilities.
(o)" The son of peace," i. e. any person of a proper temper of mind to receive the gospel.
7. even as it is meet for me to think this of you all, because I have you in my heart; inasmuch as both in my bonds (u), and in the defence and confirmation of the Gospel, ye all are partakers of 8. my grace (x). For God is my record, how greatly I long after you all in the bowels (y) of Jesus Christ. And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in 10. all judgement; that ye may approve (z) things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offence till the day of 11. Christ; being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are by Jesus Christ unto the glory and praise of God.
"the Lord." See ante 25, note on Rom. xiii. 11. The frequent mention of this approaching period shews how strongly it pressed upon St. Paul's mind, and is a strong argument that all the epistles in which it is noticed were written before the destruction of Jerusalem. See I Cor. x. 11.-Philipp. iv. 5.Thess. ii. 1, 2.-1 Tim. vi. 14.-1 Thess. v. 23.-1 Pet. i. 7. 13.-1 John ii. 28.
(u)" In my bonds." This epistle was written whilst St. Paul was a prisoner at Rome, A.D. 59. after the Philippians had sent a supply of money to St. Paul at Rome.
(x)" My grace," i. e. whatever God confers upon me, whether of suffering or otherwise the being allowed to suffer
(a) Seventy times seven," i. e. in- ย.22. definitely, without any fixed limit.
(b) "The kingdom of heaven," i. e. v.23. the course of God's proceedings.
(c) "To be sold, and his wife," &c. v.25. This was the practice in the east.
(d) "Forgave," not perhaps "abso- v.27. "lutely," but on condition of future good behaviour.
Saint Simon and Saint Jude, Apostles.
O ALMIGHTY God, who hast built thy Church upon the foundation of the Apostles and Pro
(e) "Shouldest," &c. The duty of forgiveness is strongly pressed, Éccl. xxviii. 1. "He that revengeth shall find "vengeance from the Lord, and he," (i.e. God)" will surely keep his sins in re"membrance. Forgive thy neighbour "the hurt he hath done unto thee, so "shall thy sins be forgiven also when "thou prayest: one man beareth hatred
against another, and doth he seek 66 pardon from the Lord?"
(f) "From your hearts." The forgiveness must be complete, without the least reservation.
(g)"Jude." St. Jude is supposed to have been the person called, John xiv. 22. "Judas, not Iscariot," and Luke vi. 16. " Judas, the brother of James." Both he and St. Simon are named in the list of the apostles, Luke vi. 15, 16 "Simon called Zelotes," and "Judas,
the brother of James." St. Jude is
phets, Jesus Christ himself being the head corner-stone; Grant us so to be joined together in unity of Spirit by their doctrine, that we may be made an holy temple acceptable unto thee, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
The Epistle. Jude 1. JUDE (g) the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James (b), to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and called: Mercy 2. unto you, and peace, and love, be multiplied. Beloved, when I 3. gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints. For there are 4. certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained (i) to this condemnation; ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and
called by St. Matthew, ch. x. 3. " Leb"beus, whose surname was Thaddeus ;" and by St. Mark, ch. iii. 18. "Thad"deus' only. This epistle is supposed to have been written after St. Paul's epistles to Timothy, and after the 2d of St. Peter's epistles (of which it seems in some respects an epitome or abstract), but before the destruction of Jerusalem.
(b) "James," i, e. the author of the v.1. general epistle of St. James; the son of Cleophas or Alphæus, Ante 143.
(i) "Before of old ordained," &c. v.4 i. e. "prophesied of," "foretold." Our Saviour, in his famous prophecy relative to the destruction of Jerusalem, Matt. xxiv. 10. &c. observes, that before that great event shall be offended,” many (that is, fall off from Christianity) and that "the love of many shall wax cold." In 1 Tim. iv. 1. St. Paul says, "The spirit speaketh expressly, that in the
5. our Lord Jesus Christ. I will therefore put you in remembrance, though ye once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed 6. them (k) that believed not. And the angels() which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains, under darkness, unto the judgement of the 7. great day. Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them, in like manner giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire. 8. Likewise also these filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities.
"latter times" (that is, the times just preceding the destruction of Jerusalem)
some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doc"trines of devils, speaking lies in hypo"crisy, having their conscience seared "with a hot iron." In 2 Tim. iii. 1. 5. he says, that" in the last days there "should be men" (among other defects)
having a form of godliness, but deny. ❝ing the power thereof." In 2 Thess. ii. 3. he says, the day of Christ "shall "not come, except there come a falling "away first;" and in 2 Pet. ii. 3. St. Peter says, "There shall come in the "last days scoffers walking after their own lusts, and saying, where is the "promise of his coming." It is these apostates so spoken of beforehand to whom St. Jude here alludes.
(k) Destroyed them," &c. So that it will be no protection to these apostates that they once believed, that they were once within the range of God's favour. See ante 184. note on I Cor. x. 1. &c. (7) "The angels," &c.
The argument is this: If God would not spare those whom he had so far favoured as to make his own ministers, how could it be expected that he would spare those who
The Gospel. John xv. 17. (m)
THESE things I command you, "that ye love (n) one another. "If the world hate you, ye know 18. "that it hated me before it "hated you. If ye were of the 19. "world, the world would love "his own but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, "therefore (0) the world hateth you. Remember the word (p) 20. "that I said unto you, "The "servant is not greater than his "lord." If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you: if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also. "But all these things will they 21. "do unto you for my name's "sake, because they know not (q)
had once professed to be his servants, but had afterwards deserted him?
(m) This is part of our Saviour's discourse at the last Supper, the night he was betrayed, after Judas was gone out to make the bargain for betraying him. St. John was present, and sat next him.
(n) "Love," &c. The two great v. 17. duties our Saviour here enjoins, are 1st, love, union, &c. amongst themselves; and zdly, a fearless contempt of persecution.
(o) "Therefore," &c. It is "because v. 19. you are not of the world, because your "motives are not worldly, and because of "the restraint upon worldly pursuits,plea
sures," &c. that the world will hate you. (p) "The word," &c. He had used v. 20. this saying after this very Supper, upon his washing Peter's feet, John xiii. 16. ; but he also used it when he first sent out his twelve disciples, and apprized them of the persecutions they should then meet with, Matt. x. 24. And it is to the latter, probably, that he here alludes.
(q) Because they know not," &c. v.21. Their disposition to sin is repeatedly noticed as the reason of their unbelief. Ante 203. note on 2 Cor. iv. Is not 3: this also now the foundation of infidelity, wherever it exists?