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The passover was now within two days. SECT: of our cloathing to give it to him? And yet he tells us that he is
in effect with us in his poor members ; and we invent a thousand Ver.cold excuses for neglecting to assist hiin, and send our compas40 sionate Saviour away empty. Is this the temper of a Christian?
Is this the temper in which we should wish to be found at the
judgment dav? 44, 45
But we know not Christ in this disguise. Neither did these unhappy creatures on the left-hand know him: they are surprised to be told of such a thing; and yet are represented as perishing for it. Away therefore will all those religious hopes (vainly so called) which leave the heart hardened, and the band contracted from good works! If we shut up the bowels of compassion from our brethren, how dwelieth the love of God in us? (1 John iii. 17.) Orto what doth the love of Christ constrain us, if it be not to the exercise of gratitude to him, and the offices of cheerful and active friendship to those whom he now owns as his brethren, and whom he will not be ashamed to call so in the midst of his highest triumph? Blessed Jesus, how munificent art thou ! and what a fund of charity didst thou lay up in the very words which are now before us ! In all ages since they were spoken, how many hungry hast thou fed, how many naked hast thou clothed, how many calamitous creatures hast thou relieved by them! May they be written deep in our hearts, that the joy with which we shall finally meet thee may be increased by the happy effect of this day's meditation !
The Jewish rulers consult how they might take Christ, and Judas
agrees with them to deliver him privately into their hands. Mat. XXVI. 1-5, 14–16. Mark XIV. 1, 2, 10, 11. Luke XXI. 37, to the end. XXII. 1-6.
Lule XXI. 37.
LUKE XXI. 37.
time he was teachsubject on the third day of the week in ing in the temple, and
which he suffered ; and thus he was generally at night he went out, XXI. 37 employed from the time of his public entry into and abode in the mount Jerusalem to his last passover: he was teaching of Olives.
that is called the mount by day in the temple, and at night he went out of the city, and lodged at the mount called [the mount] of Olives, in the neighbourhood of which Bethany lay; in the retirement of which, par. ticularly in the garden of Gethsemane, he often spent a considerable part of the night; being desirous to secure that only season of solitude, that he might prepare himself for his approaching
And the Jewish rulers consult how they might take Christ. 269
sufferings by a proper series of extraordinary sect.
thus lay hold of every opportunity to hear him;
might be improved for so profitable a purpose.
largely recorded above a. MAT. . XXVI. 1. And it came to pass, that when Jesus had finish- Mat. And it came to pass, ed all these discourses, and the appointed hour
2 Ye know that af- over cometh ; and in the plainest terms I now
I have often told you (Mat. xvi. 21, and xx.
have reason to repent.
was then called Caiuphas ; (as was observed be-
which one way or other they were determined
a Two days after.) I apprehend that which was just two days before the paschal the preceding discourses (from sect. cli.) lamb was caten.—I do not find that any of were delivered on the Tuesday of the week the transactions of the Wednesday are rein which he suffered ; and he probably ut corded besides the general account given tered the following words that evening, above.
270 Judas comes to them, and agrees to betray him. SECT: and not to attempt to seize him at the feast, while (Luke, for they feared there is such a concourse in the city from all the people.] Mark
XIV. 2. LUKE XXII. Mat. parts; lest the design that we have formed
-2.] XXVI.5 against him should be discovered, and, consi
dering how popular he is, there should be a tu.
XXII. XXII. 3. Satan, bv Divine permission, entered into Judas, into Judas, sirnamel
Then entered Satan who was also called Iscariot, and was (as we ob- Iscariot, being Cove] served before) one of the number of the twelve of the number of the apostles who were chosen by our Lord from the twelve : [M AT.
XXVI. 14-MARX rest of his disciples to the most honourable XIV. 10.--) trust as well as the most endearing intima. cyb: and as this malignant spirit had before suggested to him the horrid design of betraying his Master, he now strongly impressed bis mind that during his retirement he might easily find a convenient time for executing it, and might be
sure of being well rewarded for it by the rulers of 4 the Jews, And, under this impression, he im 4 And he went his
way and communed mediately went away from Christ and his
with the chies priests pany to the house of Caiaphas, whom he knew and captains, how he to be a most inveterate enemy to his Master; might betray him unto and having found means of introducing himself,
them : (MAT. XXVI.
14. MARK XIV.and communicating his general design, he con- 10.] versed with the chief priests and captains of the temple, who were not yet gone away, and deliberated how he might with the greatest con
venience and security betray him unto them. Mat. And as the sordid wretch proposed it with a MAT. XXVI. 15.. XXVI. covetous view, before he would come to any What will ye give me,
- And said unto them, 15 agreement with thein, he said, without the least and I will deliver him appearance of shame or remorse, What are you unto you? willing to give me, and I will undertake to deliver him to you at a time and place in which you may effectually secure him without the danger of giving any alarm to the people?
b One of the number of the twelve, &c.] evangelists hath marked it out in this view. This was a circumstance of such high ay Compare with these places John vi. 71. gravation, that it is observable, each of the Vol. VI. p. 437.
Reflections on the zeal of Christ and the treachery of Judas. 271 MARK XIV. 11. And when they heard his proposal, they thought SECT: And when they heard it, they were glad, and [it] very practicable; and they were glad of so promised to give him unexpected an offer from one of his own discimoney. (And they co ples to facilitate their measures; and therefore XIV.11. venanted with him for thirty piec s of silver., readily promised in general to give him a sum of [Mat. XXVI.-15. money as a reward for that service; and at last LUKE XXII. 5.) they expressly agreed with him for thirty pieces
of silver', which was the price to be paid for a
(See Zech, xi. 12, 13.) LUKLXXII. 6, And And he promised to take a punctual care in the Luke he promised, and [from a far: and accordingly from that time he dili- XXII. 6 portunity to betra hin gently sought a proper opportunity to betray him unto them in the ab- unto them, that they might come upon him prisence of the multitude vately, and apprehend him in the absence of the (Mat. XXVI. 16. MARK XIV.-11.]
multitude: nor was it long before this happened,
We see with what unremitting vigour the great Author and Luke
xxi, 37 Finisher of our faith pressed forward towards the mark, and how he quickened his pace, as he saw the day approaching ; spending in devotion the greatest part of the night, which succeeded to bis most laborious days, and resuming his work early in the morning! How 38 mueh bappier were his disciples in these early lectures than the slumbers of the morning could have made them on their beds! Let us not scruple to deny ourselves the indulgence of unnecessary sleep, that we may come morning after morning to place ourselves at his feet, and lose no opportunity of receiving the instructions of his word, and seeking those of his Spirit.
But while his gracious heart was thus intent on doing good, the Mat. chief priests and rulers of the people were no less intent on mischief , xxvi
3, 4 and murder. They took counsel together how they might put him to death : They set upon his head the price of a slave, and find an 14, 15 apostle base enough to accept it. Blush, 0 ye heavens, to have
c Thirty pieces of silver.] A slave was real value), amounted to no more than rated by the law at thirty shekels of silver, three pounds fifteen shillings of our money; a which, if we reckon them at half a croren goodly price that he was prized at of them. (which is supposed to have been about their Zech. xi, 13.
272 Jesus sends two of his disciples to prepare the passover.
SECT. been witness to this; and be ashamed, 0 earth, to have supported clxvii.
so infamous a creature! Yet this was the man who but a few days before was the foremost to appear as an advocate for the poor, and to censure the pious zeal of Mary, which our Lord vindicated and
applauded (John xii. 4–8. p. 151, 152). Let the fatal fruits of Luke his covetous disposition, instigated by Satan, be marked with ab3, 4, 6
horrence and terror; and if we see this base principle barboured in the breasts of those who call themselves the disciples and ministers of Christ, let us not wonder if by God's righteous judgment they are given up to those excesses of it which bring upon them lasting infamy and endless perdition.
Christ, having directed his disciples where to prepare the passover for
him, comes to Jerusalem for the last time before his death, and sits down with them to the celebration of it. Mat. XXVI. 17-20. Mark XIV. 12--17. Luke XXII. 7-18. John XIII. 1.
LUKE XXII. 7.
LUKE XXII.7. SEST. NOIV after this infamous bargain which Ju- THEN came the (first )
das made with tlie chief priests to betray bread, when the passinto their bands his innocent and Divine Master, over must be killed. XXII. 7. on the fifth day of the week, before the evening (Mat. XXVI. 17.
MARK XIV. 12.-1 when the first day of unleavened bread came, in which, according to the precept of the law, which had expressly limited the time of it, the passover must be killed, or the pascal lamb be slain, in commemoration of the Israelites being preserved from the destroving angel, and delivered out of Egypt, Jesus determined to keep the passover with his disciples. And, that he
8 And he sent (two 8
of his disciples), Peter might in a due manner celebrate it with them, and John, saying, Go he sent two of his disciples, Peter and John, from and prepare us the passthe place where he had spent the night before in ower, that we may eat.
[MARK XIV. 13.-] retirement with them, and said, Go to Jerusalem, and prepare the passover for us, that we may once more eat [it] together.
a The first day of unleavened bread camc.] ble that the evangelists might sometimes There is no room to question that the speak according to the usual way of reckontime when Christ sent bis disciples to 'ing days among other nations; and so, as prepare the passover was on the Thursday the use of leuven among them was to cease of the week in which he suffered; and by sun-set at sartliest, and they were obthough the first day of unleavened bread, most liged to eat their supper, which was the strictly so called, was the fifteenth day of chief meal, with unleavened cakes, it Nisan, and began with the evening that the might naturally enough be called by this passover was eaten, yet it is not improba. name.