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MATTHEW.

MARK

LUKE.

JOHN.

CHA P. III.

9 Nicodemus answered and said unto him, How can these things be?

10 Jesus answered and said unto him, Art chou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things.

11 Verily verily I say un to thee, We speak that we do know, and testify that we have seen ; and ye receive. not our witness.

12 If I have cold you earthly things and ye believe not, how shall ye believe if I tell you of heavenly things?

13 And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.

14 And as Moses lifted up the ferpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:

15 That whosoever believe eth in him, should not perish, but have eternal life. .

Nicodemus still was in the dark, which made Jesus tell him he wondered that a man skill'd in the Jewish Law, like him, should not understand these things, or should hesitate about them; but, said he, assure your self I tell you nothing, the truth of which is not most certainly known to me, altho the generality of the Jews dife trust and disbelieve my Sayings. But if you believe not what I have spoke to you concerning what is done by men here on Earth, you will much less believe me if I. relate what is done above in Heaven, which no man is acquainted with but him whom God hath sent down to men, and whom alone he has made partaker of his secret Purposes, whereas what passes here on Earth is for the most part visible to.. men. But as Moses set up a Serpent of Brass in the Desert of Arabia, that all whos look'd up to it might be cur'd of their bitings by the Serpents; in like manner : must that Man be lifted up upon a Stake, that he may give eternal' Bliss to fuch as, lhall believe on him, and are by him reduced from destruction. For so great is

the:

MATTHE W.

MARK
LUKE.

JOHN.

CH A P. III.

16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his 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 on him, is not condemned: buc he that believeth not, is condemned already, because he hath nor believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

19 And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.

20 For every one that doeth èvil, hateth the light ; neither cometh to the light, left his deeds should be reproved.

the Love of God to Man, that he has sent his only begotten Son into the World, to lead those to everlasting Happiness who believe in him, who otherwise must have perih'd to all eternity ;. God being so far from exacting the punishments their Crimes have justly deserv'd, that he has sent his Son on purpose to set them free, unless they themselves obstinately reject bis Goodness. Whosoever will believe on him shall not be punish'd; but whosoever shall deny him shall be subject to the punishments he has voluntarily brought upon himself, by not giving credit to the only be gotten Son of God, who came on purpose to deliver him. For God having 'reveald a most holy Doctrine which might direct men in the way to everlasting Salvation, they shall therefore suffer punilhment who reject this heavenly Light, and continue pertinaciously fix'd in those deadly principles which extinguish all knowledg of Virtue, by allowing and encouraging them in their Vices.

For whoever cherishes his Vices must needs hate that Doctrine which inculcates the necessity of a Reformation, and the parting with them, and consequently refuses his Assent to it, being already determin'd not to forsake his Vices, lest thereby they should be manifest to all, and he himself be rendred infamous. On the con

trary,

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trary, whoever sincerely follows after Virtue, having been always to the utmost of his knowledg obedient to the divine Commands, or is resolv'd to be so for the

future, does readily

embrace this Doctrine of Reformation, not being conscious to himself of any Crime, the discovery of which might impair his Reputation.

CHA P. XII.

Jesus departs from Jerusalem, and goes to another part of Judea,

where he baptizes such as refort unto him, while John the Baptist continues to do the like in Samaria about Jordan, where he gives a remarkable Testimony concerning Jesus. Not long after John is imprison'd by Herod Tetrarch of Galilee.

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Fter the holy days of the Passover were ended, Jesus, together with some of.

his Disciples, went into another tract of Judea, where he continued some time, and by the Ministry of his Disciples baptiz'd the Fems that offer'd themselves, asJohn was wont to do. But Fohn himself remain'd at Ænon in that part of Sainaria that is near Fordan, not far from Scythopolis and Salamis, where he wash'd the Penitents according to his Institution ; for he was not as yet cast into Prison when Fefus began to publish his Gospel to the World. About this time there arose a

Debate

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John.

MATTHEW.

MARK.

LUKE.

CHA P. III.

25 Then there arose a question between some of Johns disciples and the Jews, about purifying.

26 And they came unto John, and said unto him, Rabbi, he that was with thee beyond Jordan, to whom thou barest witness, behold, the same baptizeth, and all men come to him.

27 John answered and said, A man can receive nothing, except it be given him from heaven.

28 Ye your selves bear me witness, that I said, I am not the Christ, but that I am sent before him.

29 He that hath the bride, is the bridegroom : but the friend of the bridegroom, which standech and heareth him, rejoyceth greatly because of the bridegrooms voice : this my joy therefore is fulfilled.

Debate between the Pharisees and some of Fohn's Disciples, concerning the Baptism that was us’d by him and Jesus ;. Fohn's Disciples being unwilling that Jesus should be equal'd with their Master (as he was by the Pharisees in their dispute with them, who believed on neither) repair'd to John as it were complaining, that Jesus drew many 'also to his washing, and thereby hindred them from resorting to him at Jordan. How comes it to pass, said they, that he who was with thee the other day beyond Jordan, to whom thou gavest so clear a Testimony, should himself also baptize and draw so many to him ? Seest thou not that the number of thy Disciples, and thy Fame will be hereby lessen'd? But John told them, it was not the part of a Religious man to assume greater Authority to himself than he had been invested with by God; and you, laid he, your felves can bear me witness that I ingenuously own'd I was not the Mesah, but only sent by God before him to prepare the minds of the Jews for his reception. A Bridegroom enjoys his Bride alone; and a Friend that perceives his kindness to her will be so far from envying his happiness, that he will rather congratulate him, and rejoice with him. Thus also am I pleas'd to hear that he to whom I bore that publick Testimony does so chearfully execute his

Office,

MATTHEW. MARK.

LUKE,

JOHN.

CHA P. II.

30 He must increase, but I mult decrease.

31 He that cometh from above, is above all : he that is of the earth, is earthly, and Speakech of the earth : he char cometh from heaven, is above all.

32 And what he hath seen and heard, that he testifieth, and no man receiveth his testimony.

33 He that hath received his testimony, hath set to his seal that God is true.

34 For he whom God hath sent, speaketh the words of God : for God giveth nor the Spirit by measure unto him.

35 The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things inco his hand.

36 He that believeth on the Son, hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrach of God abidech on him.

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Office, and that so many repair unto him. I very well know that his Reputation and Authority must increase, while mine will daily leffen. He whose Birth and Authority are Divine, is above the condition of mortal Man; but he who is born like other men, takes his Rise from the Earth, and is a Messenger of such Truths as the Inhabitants of the Earth are able and are wont to deliver. He, I say, who derives his Origin from Heaven, may justly place himself above all other Men. He commemorates those things that he has seen and heard with his Celestial Father; nor are they the less true because they are embrac'd as they ought to be but by a few. Whoever receives bis Doctrine, does thereby actually profess he takes for truth whatever doth proceed from God. For what that man declares whom God has endued with so extraordinary a Power, are rather Divine Oracles than expressions of his own Thoughts, since he is continually, and in all things divinely InIpir'd. His Heavenly Father loves him in fo peculiar a manner, and has given him fo large a Power as to be able to do whatever he has a mind to. He that believes on this Son of God shall obtain eternal Life; as on the contrary, whoever shall reject him shall be excluded, and most deservedly punish'd by God himklf.

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