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Land anderen, of him
214 Reflections on the command to love God and our neighbour. SECT. upon them at pleasure.” If David himself 45 If David [him" therefore call him Lord, and speak of him as bis how is be Mat. superior, as you see he doth, how is he then his Lukt then his Son ? XXI. 45 Sone?
(And the common Now as the scribes and Pharisees were igno- people heard him glad.
- ly.] Mark XX. 37. rant of the great doctrine of the Divine nature Luke XX. 44. of the Messiah, with respect to which, even before his incarnation, he was the Lord of David, and of the whole church, they were quite confounded with the question. And the vast' crowd
of common people that was about him heard him 40 with great pleasure. And all his adversaries 46 And no man was
able to answer him were at such a loss, that no man could answer
answCT a word : neither durst him so much as a word ; neither did any one any man (from that presume, froin that day forward, to ask him any day forth) ask him any more such ensparing ouestionsfas those by which more questions.(MARK they had now contrived to assault, and, if possible, to confound him.
Mark WHATEVER might be the design of the scribe in putting this xii. 28. question to Christ again (which was in effect the same with what
another had proposed before, (Luke x. 25. sect. cvii.) we have reason to rejoice in the repetition of so important an answer. Oh that
it might be inscribed on our hearts as with the point of a diamond! 29 The first and great commandment requires us to love the Lord
indremmat.commandment med mins our God, with all our heart, and soul, and mind, and strength ; and the second, which is like unto it, to love our neighbour as ourselves. But alas, what reason have we to complain of our own deficiency on both these heads! and how much need of being taught again
even these first principles of the oracles of God! (Heb. v. 12.) 30 Can we say, with regard to the first, that the blessed God has
the whole of our hearts? Is the utmost vigour of our faculties exerted in his service? Do we make bim the end of all our actions,
of all our wishes, of all our pursuits ? --Or are we indeed such 31 equitable judges between ourselves and others as the second of
e If David himself therefore call him cible manner, thc wretched expedients of Lord, hoo is he then his Son?] This im- some modern Jews to evade the force of plies both the existence of David in a fu- that interpretation of the cxth Psalm which ture state, and the authority of the Mes. refers it to the Messiah. siah over that invisible world into which f Presume from that day forward to ask that prince was removed by death. Else, him any more questions. The plain meanhow great a Monarch soever the Messiah ing is, they asked him no more such capmight have been, he could not have been tious questions ; for the memory of this properly called David's Lord, any more confusion impressed their minds during than Julius Cæsar could have been called the short remainder of Christ's continuthe Lord of Romulus, because he reigned in ance among them; and he was soon re. Rome 700 years after his death, and vast. moved from them, so that they had no ly extended the bounds of that empire farther opportunities of doing it when that which Romulus founded.- Munster's impression wore off. Note on this text shews, in a very for
Christ discourses with the Pharisees in the temple. 215 these great commandments would require ; so as to seek our own sect. particular interests no farther than they may be subservient to, or __at least consistent with, the good of the whole? Do we make all Ver. those allowances for others which we expect or desire they should 31 make for us? -Surely we must own we are far from having yet attained, or from being already perfect. (Phil. iii. 12.)—But if 33 this be not in the main the prevailing and governing temper of our minds, in vain are our burnt-offerings and our sacrifices; in vain are all the solemnities of public worship, or the forms of domestic and secret devotion ; and by all our most pathetic expressions of duty to God, and friendship to men, we do but add one degree of guilt to another. Let us then most earnestly entreat that God would bave mercy upon us, and by his Holy Spirit write these laws in our hearts.
On these subjects let scribes instructed to the kingdom of heaven 32 insist, lest they be condemned by this expositor of the Jewish law And let those whose notions are thus wisely regulated, take heed, lest, while they seem near to the kingdom of God, by resting in 34 mere notions, they come short of it, and sink into a ruin aggravated by their near approach to the confines of salvation and glory. As for that question of Christ with which the Pharisees were Mat:
xxii. perplexed, the gospel has given us a key to it. Well might David, 41--43 in spirit, call him Lord, who according to the flesh was to descend from bis loins : for before David or Abraham was, he is. (John viii. 58.) Let us adore this mysterious union of the Divine and human natures in the person of our glorious Emmanuel; and be very careful that we do not oppose him, if we would not be found fighters against God. Already is he exalted at the right hand of 44 the Father : let his friends rejoice in his dignity and glory, and with pleasure wait the day of his complete triumphi, when all his enemies shall be put under his feet, and even the last of them be swallowed up in victory. (1 Cor. xv. 25, 54.)
Christ discourses with the Pharisees in the temple, repeating the
charges and cautions which he had formerly advanced at the house of one of that sect. Mat. XXIII. 1--22. Mark XII. 38–40. Luke XX. 45, to the end.
MAT. XXIII. 1.
Mat. XXIII. 1. THEN spake Jesus THEN Jcsus, in the progress of his doctrine SECT. * [in his doctrinel, TIEN Jcsus, in the progress of his doctrines [Luxe, in the audi- - and discourse, spake to his disciples in the clv ence of all the people, audience of all the people who were present, and Mat.
unto took occasion (as he had done formerly, Luke XXIII. 1 xi. 39, & seq. sect. cx ) to expose and caution
216 Christ warns them against the scribes and Pharisees ; SECT. then against the pride and bypocrisy of the unto his disciples,] "scribes and Pharisees, Saying openly and
ů Mark XII. 38.
LUKE XX. 45.] Mat freely to them, The scribes and the Pharisees sit 2 Saying, The scribes XXIII.2 in the chair of Moses a, and are the public and the Pharisees sit 3 teachers and expounders of his law: All there. in Moses' seat :
3 All therefore, fore whatsoever they shall charge you to observe whatsoever they bid in virtue of that law , pay a becoming deference you observe, that ob
out do and regard to, and be ready to observe and do ser
not ye after their accordingly; but practise not by any means ac- works : for they say, cording to their works: for they say well in many and do not. instances, but do not themselves practise according to what they teach.
fimitot I therefore repeat it again, Beware of imitat
Beware of the scribes : ing the bypocrisy, and following the example, ILUKE XX. 46-1 XX111.4 of the scribes; For by virtue of the traditions - MAT. XXII. 4. which in conjunction with the Pharisees they For they bind heavy
burdens, and grievous have added to the law, they bind together griev- to be borne, and lay ous and insupportable burdens, and without the them on men's shoul. least remorse lay them on men's shoulders, urging ders; but they them
selves will not move them by the heaviest penalties to conform to all them with one of their their injunctions; but they dispense with them- fingers. selves) in the neglect of many of them, and will not so much as move them with a finger of theirs.
(Compare Luke xi. 46, sect. cx.) 5 And even when they do conform in other in- 5 But all their works stances to their own rules, it is generally from they do for to be seen
of men : they make a bad principle ; for there is none of all their broad their phylacte
Mark XII. 38
a Sit in the chair of Moses.] Some think scribe in general signifies any one converhere is an allusion to those pulpits which sant about books and writings; and is some. Ezra made for the expounders of the law times put for a civil officer, whose business (Neh, viii. 4.) and which were afterwards probably resembled that of a Secretary of continued in the synagogue, from whence state (2 Sam. viii. 17. 1 Kings iv. 3. 2 the rabbies delivered their discourses sitting. Kings xix. 2.) at other times it is used at It is probably called Moses' chair, because large for a man of learning and ability (1 it was that from whence the books of Moses Chron. xxvii. 32. Jer. xxxvi. 26 Ezra vii. were read and explained ; so that he 6. Mat. xxiii. 34. 1 Cor. i. 20.) But as seemed to dictate from thence. It is biblical learning was most esteemed among strange that Lightfoot (Hor. Heb. in loc.) the Jews, the word in the New Testament and Gussatus, should explain this of a seems to be chiefly appropriated to those legislative authority ; since the scribes and that applicd themselves to the study of Pharisees, as such, had no peculiar autho- the law (perhaps including those whose rity of that kind.
business it was to transcribe it.) Of these b In virtue of that law.] If this limi- the public professors, who read lectures tation be not supposedl, this passage will upon it, were called doctors, or lawyers ; he inconsistent with all those in which he and, probably, they who were invested condemns the doctrines of the scribes and with some public offices in the sanhedrim, Pharisees. Had he meant (as Orobio, and or other courts, scribes nf the people (Mat. some Popish writers have unaccountably i. 4.) - But that the scribes, as Trigland pretended) to assert their infallibility, and labours to prove (de Secia Kareor. p. 68) to require an absolute subinission to their were karaites, or textuaries, who rejected dictates, he must have condemned him- those traditions which the Pharisees inculself, as it was known he was rejected by cated, seems, from this text especially, them. See Limborch. Collat. Amic. p. 58, utterly improbable. Our Lord cominonly 114.
joins them with the Pharisees, and proc Beware of the scribes.] The word bably most of them were of that sect.
Who minded the show more than the substance of religion. 217 ries, and enlarge the works but what they chiefly do with a design to sect. borders of their gar- be viewed and taken notice of by men, as examples ments.
of extraordinary piety. For this purpose, in par- Mar
(Compare Numb. xv. 38–40.) LUKE XX.–46.- These are the self-conceited and vain glorious Luke Which desire to walk mon in long robes;-[MARK
men, who affect to walk in long garments, that XX. 46 XI. -39,
they may appear with an air of distinguished MAT. XXIII. 6. gravity and stateliness; And love the uppermost Mat. And love the upper- Olaceeat feasts where o most rooms at feasts, Pucca
is places at feasts, where guests of the first quality XXIII.6 and the [Luke, high: are used to sit; and are ambitious to secure the est] seats in the syna- highest seats even in the very synagogues', where gogues, [MARK XII. they
- they should meet to prostrate themselves in the 39. LUKE XX.-46.]
- Divine presence with the lowest abasement of 7 And [salutations] soul: Ånd, on the same principle of vain-glory 7 in the markets, and to and be called of men, Rab. a.
.and ostentation, they desire to receive saluta
santorion they desire to recei
concourse (compare Luke xi. 43. sect. cx.)
& They make their phylacteries remarkably with this title, which was derived from broad.] I doubt not but most of my readers 27, a word which signifies both magnivery well know that the Jews (understand. tude and multitude, and seems intended very ing Exod. xill. 9, 16. and Deut. vi. 8. xi. emphatically to express both the grealness 18. wbich commanded them to bind the law and the variety of that learning which they on their heads, and to let it be as frontlets be
ads, and to let it be as jronllets be- who bore it were supposed to be possesstween their eyes, in a literal sense) used to ed of (L'Enfant's Introd. p. 98.)-Dr. wear little scrolls of parchment, on which Lightfoot teils us (Hor. Heb. in loc.) that those passages were written, bound to their
the words of the scribes are declared to be foreheads and wrists. It is generally sup
risis. "t is generally sup- more amiable and weighty than those of posed they were called phylacteries in Greek,
the prophets, and cqui] to those of the law : as being looked upon as a kind of amulet
so ibat Gamaliel advised to get a rabbi, to keep them from danger. See Serrar.
that one might no longer doubt of any Trber. p. 38; and Drus, de tribus sectis, p. thing. More passages to this purpose 263, 266.
may be seen in Dr. Gale's Sermons, Vol. e The highest seats in the synagogues.] The I. p. 80, and in Whilby and Elsner, in loc. doctors had seats by themselves, with their Thev fully shew the necessity there was backs towards the pulpit in which the law for such repeated cautions as our Lord was read, and their faces towards the peo.
gives, and are an abundant answer to ple. These were accounted the most
what Orobio objects to our Lord's conduct honourable; and therefore these ambitious
in this respect (see Limborch. Collat. p. scribes and Pharisees contended for them. 119); for, considering their inveterate prea See Reland. Antig. Heb. p. 61; Vitring. de iudices against Christ, it could never be Synag. Vet. p. 191,& seq; and Wolf. in loc.
supposed that the common people would fTo be called by men, Rabbi, rabbi.] receive the gospel till such corrupt teachers Many learned men have observed that an as these were brought into a just disgrace. extravagant notion of respect went along
FIe openly reproves them for their pride. SECT. honour which they are fond of having repeated bi, rabbi. (MARK XII.
—38. LUKE XX.in every sentence, and almost at every word.
46.-) Mat. But as for yon, my disciples, be not you called 8 But be not ye XXIII.8 Rabbi, nor value yourselves on the name, if it called Rabbi: for one should ever happen to be given you; for one is ism.
Christ, and all ye are your Master, [even] Christ; and ye are all bre- brethren.
threns, and as such should treat each other with
below earth fatherń
or ho fand your father upon the
earth: for one is your of receiving this title from men, who may be Father which is in ready to speak of themselves as but children in heaven. comparison of you, and implicitly to follow all your dictates; for one is your Father, and that of the whole family, [even] he who dwells in the highest heaven, and before whom all the most distinguished honours of the children of
men disappear, as less than nothing and vanity. 10 Neither be ye called masters and guides; for one is 10 Neither be ye your great Master and Instructor, seven Christi, called masters: for one
:> is your Master, even whose dictates you are ever to receive, and in Christ. whose name and authority alone you are to teach j others. But, on the contrary, he that is, and 11 But he that is
at greatest among you, would appear in the eyes of God to be, the greatest
shall be your servant. among you, shall be most eminent for condescension and humility, and will be ready to wait on the rest, and to behave himself on all occa
sions as your servant. (Compare Mat. xx. 26, 1927. p. 135) And what I have often told you 12 And whosoerer
willassuredly be found to be a certain truth, That shall exalt himself, shall whosoever shall attempt in an ambitious way to be abased; and he that
shall humble himself, exalt himself, shall sooner or later, by one method shall be exalted. or another, be abased ; and whosoever, on the other hand, shall humble himself, shall be exalted
to the highest honour k. 13 Then Jesus, turning from his disciples, to 13 But wo unto you
g Ye are all brethren.] It is observable, the very same words (here, and in ver. that not one word is said of Peter's authority 8.) Our Lord know how requisite it over the rest, either here, or on the appli- would be to attend to it, and how ready cation made by cbediee's children; though even bis ministers would be to forget it. had such an authority been intended, no k Whosoever Suit Palt himself, &c.] thing could have been inore natural, or ne- Chust seems by the frequent repetition cessary, than to have mentioned and ad. of this marim to intimate that he intended justed it. Compare noleg on Mat. xx. 26. it, not only for those who were to be teachers p. 135.
of others, but for all his disciples without h Call not [any one on earth your fa. exception. And it is well worthy of our ther.] The Pharisees, no doubt, had this observation that no one sentence of our title given them; and Bishop Wilkins ob- Lord's is so frequently repeated as this ; serves, that it is a title which assum- which occurs at least ten times in the ear. ing priests of all religions have greatly af- gelists. Compare Mat, xvii. 4. xx. 26, fected.
27. xxiii. 10, 11. Mark ix. 35. X. 43, 44. i One is your Master, seven) Christ.] It Luke xiv, 11. xiiii. 14. xxi. 26. and John is remarkable that this occurs twice in xiii. 14.