Page images
[ocr errors]

warns them to prepare for suffering, as the only road to honor then would
be humility. Gives sight to Bartimeus. Rides into Jerusalem on an ass ;
the people attending him with shouts. Devotes the barren fig-tree. Drives
the traffickers out of the temple. Manifests the power of faith. Enjoins
forgiveness on all who would be forgiven of God. Silences those who
controvert his authority. Illustrates their ingratitude to God, by the par-
able of the husbandmen who ill-treated and killed their landlord's messen-
gers. Concludes with predicting the rejection of the Jews, and the call

of the Gentiles, . .

Section VII. The Prophecy on Mount Olitet.-Ch. xii. 13, etc. xii.

Jesus eludes the craft of the Pharisees, who consult him on the lawfulness of

paying tribute to Cæsar. Vindicates the doctrine of the resurrection

against the Sadducees. Answers the Scribes who questioned him about

what is most important in the law. Puzzles the Pharisees with an expres-

sion in the Psalms applied to the Messiah. Warns the people against the

ambition and hypocrisy of the Scribes. The liberality of a gift must be

rated by the circumstances of the giver. The destruction of the temple

foretold. The calamities by which it will be preceded. The signs that

the Judge is at hand. The time unknown to all but God. The necessity

of unintermitted vigilance, . . . . . . ]


Section VIJI. The Last Supper.-Ch. xiv. 1–52.

The rulers consult together about the method of apprehending Jesus. A fe-

male disciple anoints his head. Judas bargains with the chief priests to

deliver him to them. Jesus eats the passover with his disciples. Acquaints

them of the treachery of one of them. Institutes the commemoration of

his death. Foretells their desertion, and Peter's denial of him. His dis-

tress in the garden. He is seized by an armed multitude conducted by

Judas, . .



Section IX. The Crucifirion.-Ch. xiv. 53, etc. xv. 1–41.

Jesus is brought before the Sanhedrim. Charged with blasphemy, and con-

demned. Denied by Peter. Delivered bound to the Roman procurator.

Before whom he is accused by the Jewish rulers. Pilate, perceiving that

the accusation proceeded from envy, tries in vain to save him, under pre-

tence of granting him to the prayer of the multitude, accustomed to obtain

the release of a prisoner at the passover. They, instigated by their rulers,

demand the release of Barabbas, and the crucifixion of Jesus. Pilate at

last consents to gratify them. Jesus is scourged, mocked, and crucified

between two malefactors. Is insulted on the cross by persons of all de-

nominations, fellow-sufferers not excepted. His death attended with prodi-

gies, which strike the Roman centurion and other spectators with aston-


. . . . 184

Section X. The Resurrection.-Ch. xv. 42, etc. xvi.

The body of Jesus given to Joseph of Arimathea, who lays it in his own sep-

ulchre. The resurrection of Jesus announced at the sepulchre to some pi-

ous women by an angel. Ile appears first to Mary Magdalene; then to

others; afterwards to the eleven, whom he sends to publish his doctrine

every-where, empowering them to work miracles in evidence of their mis-

sion. And is taken up into heaven, .

Notes, . .

INTRODUCTION.-Ch. i. 1-4. . . . . . . 254

Section I. The Annunciotion.-Ch. i. 5–56.

The conception and birth of John the Baptist announced from heaven to his

father Zacharias in the temple. Zacharias doubting, receives for a sign

that he shall be speechless till the fulfilment of the prediction. Returns
home with his wife Elizabeth, who, after conceiving, lives some months in
retirement. The immaculate conception and birth of Jesus announced to

his virgin mother by the same heavenly messenger. Mary's visit to her

cousin Elizabeth. Elizabeth's joy, and prophecy, on the sight of Mary.

Mary's hymn of thanksgiving and triumph,


Section II. The Nativity.-Ch. i. 57, etc. ii. 1–40.

The birth of John. His circumcision. The Emperor's edict for registering

the people occasions Mary's journey to Bethlehem. There she bears Je-

sus. The tidings announced by an angel to shepherds. Their visit to the

infant at Bethlehem. Jesus is circumcised. Afterwards, at Mary's purifi-

cation, presented to the Lord as a first-born male. The prophecy of Sime-

on on that occasion: And of Anna, . . . . . . . 256

Section III. The Baptism.-Ch. ii. 41, etc. ii. iv. 1-13.

Jesus in tender age discusses some questions with the rabbis. Is subject to

his parents. John sent to baptize and admonish the people, announcing

the Messiah. The bad treatment he receives from Herod. Jesus baptized

and attested from heaven. His genealogy from Adam. He is tempted by

the devil, . . . . . . . . . . . . 259

Section IV. The Entrance on the Ministry.-Ch. iv. 14, etc. v. vi. 1-11.

Jesus teaches in Galilee with applause. Explains, in the synagogue of Naza-

reth, a prediction of Isaiah. The people offended, attempt to throw him

down a precipice. He escapes their fury. Expels a demon at Capernaum.

Cures Peter's wife's mother of a fever. Performs many other cures. An-

nounces the reign of God in the synagogues of Galilee. From a bark be-

longing to Peter, teaches the people on shore. By an extraordinary draught

of fishes, prefigures the success of his apostles as fishers of men. Cleanses

a leper, and heals a paralytic carried on a bed. Is charged with blasphe-

my. Calls Matthew. Eats with publicans. Vindicates this conduct.

Also that of his disciples, in not fasting. Clears from breach of Sabbath-

himself for curing on that day, and them for plucking and rubbing the ears

of corn induced by hunger, · · · · · · ·


Section V. The Nomination of Apostles.-Ch. vi. 12, etc. vii. 1–35.

Jesus selects his twelve apostles : afterwards, attended by a great multitude,

teaches who are truly happy; that we ought to love all men, and do good

to all, enemies not excepted : warns against uncharitableness in judging

others; partiality in judging ourselves. The evidence that a man is good,

is his actions, not his professions; the insignificancy of the latter without

the former. Jesus cures a centurion's servant. Ai Nain restores to life a

widow's son. John's message to Jesus. Testimony of Jesus concerning

John. The people's opinion of both,


Section VI. Signal Miracles and Instructions.—Ch. vii. 36, etc. viii. ix. 1–17.
A woman of a bad life annoints the feet of Jesus in the house of a Pharisee ;
whom, being scandalized at his permitting it, Jesus instructs in the extent
of divine mercy, and its happy consequences; travels about, teaching and
warning in cities and villages, attended by the twelve and some pious wo-
men. The parable of the sower. Reason for using parables :-the expla-
nation. A lamp not lighted but to enlighten. Knowledge not given but
to be communicated. Who are considered by Jesus as his dearest relatives.

He embarks-meets with a tempest-stills it by a word-lands—cures the

demoniac who had the legion, and a woman of a bloody issue. The daugh.

ter of Jairus restored to life. Jesus sends the twelve, empowering them to

cure diseases. Herod's doubts concerning Jesus. Jesus feeds 5000 in the



Section VII. The Transfiguration.-Ch. ix. 18, etc. v.
Different opinions concerning Jesus. Peter acknowledges him to be the Mes-

siah. Jesus foretells his own death and resurrection. All who would be

followers, must prepare for suffering. Jesus transfigured in the presence
of Peter and Zebedee's sons-cures a demoniac—again foretells that he
will be delivered to his enemies. Humility the road to preferment in the
reign of heaven. The meanest disciple not to be despised. The services
of those who do not accompany the apostles not to be rejected. Jesus sets

out for Jerusalem-is refused adinittance into a Samaritan city on the road.

The vindictive proposal of two disciples rejected by their Master, with a

severe reprimand to the proposers. Those who would follow Jesus, must

do it at all hazards, and without delay. The mission of the Seventy. The

aggravation of the guilt of those who, though they had enjoyed the minis-

try of Jesus and seen his miracles, remained impenitent. The return and

report of the Seventy. Jesus is consulted by a lawyer, as to what must

be done to obtain eternal life. He explains by the parable of the humane

Samaritan, the meaning of neighbor. In the example of Martha and her

sister Mary, we are taught what is the most important pursuit,


SECTION VIII. The Character of the Pharisees.—Ch. xi. xii.

Jesus gives his disciples a model of prayer-enjoins importunity- cures a

dumb demoniac—refutes the plea of the Pharisees, that by the aid of de-

mons he expelled demons—points out the true happiness of man. Jonah

the only sign that would be granted to that generation : their obduracy

and folly contrasted to the penitence of the Ninevites and the Queen of

Sheba's love of wisdom. A Pharisee, at whose house Jesus dines, scan-

dalized at his not washing his hands before dinner. Jesus reproaches the

Scribes and Pharisees, with being more solicitous about cleansing the out-

side than the inside ; with exactness in things of little moment, whilst

they neglected things of the greatest; with affecting pre-eminence in every

thing; with hypocrisy; with imposing burdens on others, from which

they kept themselves free ; with persecuting the prophets when living,

and pretending to honor them when dead; with obstructing the people's

entry into the kingdom of God. He warns his disciples of their danger-

ous doctrine—fortifies them against the dread of their power-reminds them

of the care of Providence--and of the greatness of their future recompense.

The danger of apostacy; and of detracting from the Holy Spirit. Warn-

ing against covetousness, from the example of a rich fool who exulted in

his stores, and knew not that he had not a day to live : against anxiety.

Incitements to vigilance and activity. The doctrine of Jesus the occasion

of contention and division. Men attentive and judicious in temporal affairs,

often careless and injudicious in spiritual concerns, . . . 277

Section IX. The Nature of the Kingdom.-Ch. xiii. xiv.

Sudden and violent deaths not evidences of greater guilt in individuals, but

general warnings to reformation. The similitude of the barren fig-tree.

An infirm woman cured on the Sabbath. The similitude of the grain of

mustard-seed; and of the leaven. Salvation demands our utmost vigilance

and exertion. In spite of Herod's designs upon him, Jesus would go about

safely for a short time, and then finish his course at Jerusalem. His lamen-

tation over that impenitent and devoted city. A dropsical man cured in a

Pharisee's house on the Sabbath. A warning against forwardness and

vanity. Admonition to entertain the needy rather than the wealthy.

Parable of the supper to which the invited refused to come. The neces-

sity of deliberation before we engage in the Messiah's service, illustrated

from the example of a prudent builder, and of a king at war, . . 282

Section X. Parables.-Ch. xv. xvi.

The lost sheep. The lost drachma. The prodigal son. The unjust but

provident steward. The use men make of temporal things here, marks

their fitness for the trust of spiritual things hereafter. Admonitions against

avarice; hypocrisy ; reliance on the judgment of men; against divorce.

The utmost exertion requisite to secure a place in the kingdom of heaven.

The rich man and Lazarus,

. . . 285

Section XI. Instructions and Warnings.-Ch. xvii. xviii. xix. 1-27.

Nothing more dangerous than to insnare. The method of treating an offend-

ing brother. The power of faith. Obedience to the Creator, gives no

claim on his favor. The cure of ten lepers, of whom only one, a Samari-
tan, proves grateful. The reign of God 'not introduced with outward
show. The coming to judgment sudden and unexpected, like the deluge,
and the destruction of Sodom. That disciple is fortified against danger
who prefers his Master to every earthly thing. The parable of the impor-
tunate widow and the unjust judge. The devotions of the Pharisee and of
the publican compared. The people encouraged to bring their children to
Jesus. What must be done to obtain eternal life. How far the desire of
perfection would lead us. Riches a great obstacle to men's admission into
the kingdom. The reward of them who abandon any thing for Jesus.
His death and resurrection foretold. The cure of a blind beggar. The
conversion of Zaccheus. The parable of the pounds, . . 288

SECTION XII. The Entry into Jerusalem.-Ch. xix. 28, etc. XX. xxi. 1-4.
Jesus rides into the city on an ass, the multitude accompanying him with

shouts—laments the obduracy of the city, and foretells its fate-drives the
traffickers out of the temple-silences the chief priests and others who
questioned his authority. The parable of the husbandmen who ill-treated
and killed their landlord's messengers-foretells the rejection of the Jews,
and the admission of the Gentiles into the church-eludes the craft of the
Pharisees, who question him on the lawfulness of paying tribute to Cæsar

-vindicates the resurrection against the Sadducees--puzzles the Pharisees
about the meaning of an expression in the Psalms-warns his hearers
against the vanity and arrogance of the Scribes-teaches that charity is to
be rated more by the ability of the giver than by the greatness of the



Section XIII. The Last Supper.-Ch. xxi. 5, etc. xxii. 1–53.
The destruction of the temple foretold. The calamities by which it would
be preceded. The signs that judgment is nigh. The punishment of the
wicked will prove the deliverance of the saints. The need of unremitted
vigilance. The rulers consult together about putting Jesus to death. Judas
sells him to them. Jesus eats the passover with his disciples-institutes the
commemoration of his death-acquaints them of the treachery of one of
them-assures them that, in his reign, humility and usefulness will prove
the only genuine honor-foretells the transgression of Peter, and some of
the calamities to which they were soon to be exposed. The agony on
Mount Olivet. He is seized by an armed multitude conducted by Judas-
heals the high priest's servant, whose ear had been cut off by one of the


Section XIV. The Crucifixion.-Ch. xxii. 54, etc. xxiii. 1–49.
Jesus is brought to the high-priest's house-denied by Peter-abused by the

servants-tried by the Sanhedrim, and condemned-consigned to the Ro.
man procurator, before whom they accuse him of sedition and rebellion.
Pilate, not convinced, sends him to Herod, then at Jerusalem. Herod, dis-
appointed of seeing him perform miracles, derides him, and remands him to
Pilate. Pilate, perceiving his innocence, tries in vain to save him, on
pretence of granting him to the prayer of the people, accustomed to obtain
the release of a prisoner at the passover ; but they and their rulers obstinate-
ly demand the crucifixion of Jesus, and the release of Barabbas, impris-
oned for sedition and murder. Pilate reluctantly consents to gratify them.
Jesus led to Calvary, the cross carried by Simon a Cyrenian-is followed
by some female disciples, who lament him-is nailed to the cross between
two malefactors-prays for his enemies—is insulted by all ranks. One of
the malefactors joins in insulting him, and is rebuked by the other. Jesus
promises paradise to the penitent oriminal. The death of Jesus, attended
with such prodigies as confound the centurion and other spectators, . 299

Section XV. The Resurrection.--Ch. xxiii. 50, etc. xxiv.
The body of Jesus given to Joseph of Arimathea, who deposites it in his own

sepulchre. The resurrection of Jesus announced by angels to some pious
women at the sepulchre. These report it to the disciples. Peter hastens to

[ocr errors]

Section I. The Incarnation.-Ch. i.
The pre-existence, divinity, and creative exertion of the Word. The light of

the world. The end of John's mission. The reception of the Word among

God's ancient people. The word incarnate, the interpreter of God, the

fountain of grace and truth to men, visits the earth. The Baptist's testi-

mony concerning himself; concerning the Messiah, whom God had indica-

ted to him by a visible token. Two of John's disciples, induced by their

Master's testimony, follow Jesus. Others also called by Jesus, . . 423

Section II. The Entrance on the Ministry.-Ch. ii. ii.

Jesus turns water into wine at a marriage in Cana; goes to Jerusalem ; drives

the traffickers out of the temple ; silences those who questioned his authori-
ty; makes many converts, but not all worthy of confidence; is visited se-
cretly by Nicodemus, a magistrate, with whom he converses on regenera-
tion, faith, and fortitude in the cause of truth. Jesus retires into the coun-
try ; employs his disciples in baptizing : this is reported to John, who gives

his testimony of Jesus, exalting his mission and personal dignity much

above his own,

SECTION V. The People fed in the Desert.-Ch. vi, vü. 1.

Jesus feeds five thousand miraculously in the desert. While his disciples

embark, he retires from the multitude, who intend by force to make him
their king. The night being stormy, he follows his disciples, walking on
the sea; enters their vessel, which immediately reaches the intended port;
instructs the people who flock about him, as to the object most worthy of
their labor; declares himself the bread of life, the source of spiritual nour-
ishment and comfort, prefigured by the manna which the Israelites ate in
the desert. His language, so strongly metaphorical, proves unintelligible
to many, and makes not a few withdraw altogether. Jesus having asked

« PreviousContinue »