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also come nto this place of tor- 30 And he said, Nay, father ment.

Abraham: but if one went unto 29 Abraham saith unto him, They. them from the dead, they will re* have Moses and the prophets; let pent. them hear them.

31 And he said unto him, II" a Is.34.16. Jno.5.39.

b 2 Cor.4.3. no wish that his friends should suffer poor, be undistinguished from common also, and he supposed that if one went dust, and be unknown. om the dead they would hear him. 5th. We should not envy the con.

29. Moses. The writings of Moses. dition of the rich. The first five books of the Bible. 1 The prophets. The remainder of the Old “On slippery rocks I see them stand, Testament.

And fiery billows roll below. What the prophets had written. I Hear them. Hear them speak Now let them boast how tall they rise in the scriptures. Read them, or hear I'll never envy them again; chem read in the synagogues, and at- There they may stand with haughty eyes 'cnd to what they have delivered.

Till they plunge deep in endless pain 30. Nay. No. They will not hear

Their fancied joys how fast they fee, Moses and the prophets. They have Like dreams, as fleeting and as vain; heard them so long in vain, and there is Their songs of softest harmony no prospect now that they will attend Are but a prelude to their pain." to the message. But if one should go to them directly from eternity, they will

6th. We should strive for a better in hex him. The novelty of the message heritance than can be possessed in thi would attract their attention, and they life. would listen to what he would say.

31. Be persuaded. Be convinced of “Now I esteem their mirth and wine the truth, and of the danger and folly

Too dear to purchase with my blood

Lord, 'tis enough that thou art mineof their way, and the certainty of their

My life, my portion, and my God." suffering hereafter, and be induced to turn from sin to holiness, and from Satan

7th. The sufferings of the wicked in unto God.

hell will be indescribably great ThinkFrom this impressive and instructive what is represented by torment, by parable we may learn: Ist. That the souls of men do not by that state where a single drop of

burning flame, by insupportable thirst die with their bodies. 2d. That the souls of men are con- that all this is but a representation of

water would afford relief. Remember scious after death ; that they do not the pains of the damned, and that this sleep, as some have supposed, till the will have no intermission, day or night, morning of the resurrection.

but will continue from year to year 3d. That the righteous are taken to and age to age, without any end, and a place of happiness immediately at you have a faint view of the sufferings death, and the wicked consigned to of those who are in hell. misery. 4th. Thal wealth does not secure beyond the grave-a hell. If there is

8th. There is a place of sufferings from death.

not, then this parable has no meaning. " How vain are richies to secure

It is impossible to make any thing of it Their laughty owners from the grave!"

unless it be designed to teach that.

9th. There will never be any escape The rich, the beautiful, the gay, as from those gloomy regions. There is a well as the poor, go down to the grave. gulf fixed -fixed, not movable. Nor All their pomp and apparel; all their can any of the damned beat a pathway honors, their palaces, and their gold across this gulf to the world of holiness. cannot save them. Death can as easily 10th. We see the amazing folly of find his way into the splendid mansions those who suppose there may be an end of the rich as into the cottages of the to the sufferings of the wicked, and poor; and the rich shall turn to the who, on that supposition, seem willing same corruption, and soon, like the I to go down to hell to suffer a long time

they hear not Moses and the pro-| 3 Take heed to yourselves: If phets, neither will a they be per- thy brother trespass against thee, suaded though one rose from the rebuke him; and if he repent, for dead.

give him. CHAPTER XVII.

4 And if he trespass against thee TH THEN said he unto the disci- seven times in a day, and seven

ples, It is impossible but times in a day turn again to thee, that offences will come: but woe saying, I repent; thou d shalt for unto him through whom they come! give him.

2 It were better for him that a 5 And the apostles said unto the mill-stone were hanged about his Lord, Increase our faith. neck, and he cast into the sea, than 6 And the Lord said, If ye had that he should offend one of these faith as a grain of mustard-seed, ye little ones.

might say unto the sycamine-tree, a Jno.12.10,11. b Matt.18.6,7. Mar.9.42. d Matt.6.12,14. Col.3.13. e He.12.2. Le.19.17.

f Matt.17.20. 21.21. Mar.9.23. 11.23. rather than go at once to heaven. If and seek an explanation., Acquaint man were to suffer but a thousand him with what has been the effect of years, or even one year, why should he his conduct, and the state of your feelbe so foolish as to choose that suffering, ings, that he may acknowledge his er rather than go at once to heaven, and rors and repent. be happy at once when he dies ?

5. Increase our faith. This duty of 11th. God gives us warning sufficient forgiving offences seemed so difficult to to prepare for death. He has sent his the disciples, that they felt the need word, his servants, his Son; he warns strongly of an increase of faith; they us by his Spirit and his Providence; by felt that they were prone themselves to the entreaties of our friends, and by the harbor resentments, and that it required death of sinners; he offers us heaven, an additional increase of true religion to and he threatens hell. If all this will enable them to comply with the requirenot move sinners, what would do it? ments of Jesus. We may learn from There is nothing that would.

this, 1st. That Jesus had the power of 12th. God will give us nothing fur- increasing the faith of his people.ther to warn us. No dead man will Strength comes from him, and especi come to life to tell us of what he has ally strength to believe the gospel

If he did, we would not believe Hence he is called the Author and Finhim. Religion appeals to man, not by isher of our faith. Heb. xii. 2. 2d. The ghosts and frightful apparitions. It ap- duty of forgiving offences is one of the peals to their reason, their conscience, most difficult duties of the Christian their hopes, and their fears. It sets life religion. It is so contrary to our native and death soberly before men, and if feelings, and to proud, corrupt nature, it they will not choose the former, they implies such true nobleness of soul, and must die. If you will not hear the Son elevation above the petty feelings of of God, and the truth of the scriptures, malice and revenge, and is so contrary there is nothing which you will or can to the received maxims of the world hear ; you will never be persuaded, and which teach us to cherish rather than will never escape the place of torment. forgive the memory of offences, that it

is no wonder our Saviour dwells much CHAPTER XVII.

on this duty, and so strenuously insists 1, 2. It is impossible. It cannot but on it in order to our having evidence happen. Such is the state of things that our hearts have been changed. that it will be. See these verses ex- Some have thought that this prayer plained in Matt. xviii. 6, 7.

that he would increase their faith, re3, 4. See Matt. xviii. 15, 21, 22. Ties- fers to the power of working miracles, pass against thee. Sin against thee, and especially to the case recorded in or does any thing that gives you an of- Matt. xvii. 16-20. fence or does you an injury. 'T Rebuke. 6. See Matt. xvii. 20. Sycamine-tree. Reprove. Go and tell him his fault, | This name, as well as sycamore in

been.

Be taou plucked up by the root, and

✓ But which of you, having a be thou planted in the sea, and it servant ploughing, or feeding cattle, should obey you.

will say unto him by and by, when given among us to the large tree com- of a mulberry-tree, but bearing a spe. monly called the buttonwood. But the cies of figs. This tree was common in tree here mentioned is different. The Palestine also. It is probable that our Latin Vulgate and the Syriac versions Lord was standing by one as he ad. translate it mulberry-tree. It is said to dressed these words to his disciples. have been a tree that commonly grew The following cut will furnish a view m Egypt, of the size and appearance of the Sycamore-tree and its fruit.

[graphic][subsumed]

7. Having a servant, &c. This pa- 1 him. In answer to these expectations, rable seems to have been spoken with Jesus spoke this parable, showing them: reference to the rewards which the dis. 1st. That they should be rewarded, as ciples were expecting in the kingdom a servant would be provided for, but, of the Messiah. The occasion on which 2d. That this was not the first thing; it was spoken cannot be ascertained. that there was a proper order of things, It does not seem to have any particular and thus it might be delayed, as a ser connexion with what goes before. It vant would be provided for, but at the may be supposed that the disciples were proper time, and at the pleasure of the somewhat impatient to have the king- master; and, 3d. That this reward was dom restored to Israel (Acts i. 6), that not to be expected as a matter of merit, B, that he would assume his kingly but would be given at the good pleasure power, and that they were impatient of of God, for they were but unprofitable the delay, and anxious to enter on the servants. a By and by. This should rewards which they expected, and which have been translated immediately. He they not improvably were expecting in would not as the first thing, or as soon consequence of their devotedness to as he returned from the field, direct hima

he is come froin the field, Go, and went to Jerusalem, that he passed sit down to meat?

through the midst of Samaria ana 8 And will not rather say unto Galilee. kim, Make ready wherewith I may 12 And as he entered into a cersup, and gird thyself

, and serve me tain village, there met him ten men till I have eaten and drunken; and that were lepers, which stood afar afterward thou shalt eat and drink ? off :

9 Doth he thank that servant be- 13 And they lifted up their voices, cause he did the things that were and said, Jesus, Master, have mercy commanded him ? I' trow note 10 So likewise ye,

when

ye

shall 14 And when he saw them, he uave done all those things which said unto them, Go shew yourare commanded you, say, We are a selves unto the priests. And it unprofitable servants; we have done came to pass, that, as e they went, that which was our duty to do. they were cleansed. 11 And it came to pass as he

cLe.13.46. d Le.13.2. 14.3. Matt.8.4. c. a Job 22.3. 35.7. Ps.16.2,3. Is.64.6. Ro.11. 35. 1 Co.9.16,17. b c.9.51,52. Jno.4.4.

on us.

5.14.

e 2 Ki.5.14. Is.65.24.

pose not.

to eat and drink. Hungry and weary will remember our iniquities no more. he might be, yet it would be proper for Heb. viii. 12. him first to attend upon his master. So 11. The midst of Samaria and Galilee. the apostles were not to be impatient He went from Galilee and probably because they did not at once receive the travelled through the chief villages and reward to which they were looking towns in it, and then left it; and as Sa.

To meat. To eat. Or rather, place maria was situated between Galilee and thyself at the table.

Jerusalem, it was necessary to pass 8. I may sup. Make ready my sup- through it. Or it may mean, that he per. Gird thyself. See Note, Luke passed along on the borders of each to, xii. 37.

wards the river Jordan, and so passed 9. I trow not. I think not; or I sup- in the midst, i. e. between Galilee and

Samaria. This is rendered more proba. 10. Are unprofitable servants. We ble from the circumstance that as he have conferred no favor. We have mer. went from Galilee, there would have ited nothing, and have not benefited God, been no occasion for saying that he pass. or laid him under obligation. If he re ed through it, unless it be meant through wards us, it will be matter of unmerited the confines or borders of it, or at least favor. This is true in relation to Christ. it would have been mentioned before ians in the following respects : 1st. Our Samaria. services are not profitable to God (Job 12. There met him. They were in his xxii. 2); he needs not our aid, and his way, or they were in his path, as he was essential happiness will not be increased entering the village. They were not by our efforts. 2d. The grace to do his allowed to enter the village while they will comes from him only, and all the were afflicted with the leprosy. Lev. praise of that will be due to him. 3d. xii. 46. Num. v. 2, 3. [ Lepers. See All that we do, is what is our duty; we Note on Matt. viii. 2.

Stood afar off. cannot lay claim to having rendered any At a distance, as they were required by service that will bind him to show us law. They were unclean, and it was favor ; and, 4th, our best services are not lawful for them to come near to mingled with imperfections. We come those who were in health. As Jesus short of his glory, (Rom. iii. 23); we do was travelling, they were also walking not serve him as humbly, and cheerful- in the contrary, way, and seeing him, ly, and faithfully as we ought; we are and knowing that they were unclean, far, very far from the example set us by they stopped, or turned aside, so that the Saviour, and if we are saved and they might not expose others to the concewarded, it will be because God will tagic 2. vc merciful to o'ır unrighteousness, and 14 Go show yourselves, &c. Soo 15 And one of them, when he 17 And Jesus answering said saw that he was healed, turned Were there not ten cleansed ? but back, and with a loud voice glori- where are the nine ? fed « God,

18 There are not c found that 16 And fell down on his face at returned to give glory to God save his feet, giving him thanks : and he this stranger. was a "Samaritan.

c Ps.106.13. a Ps.30.1,2. b Jno.4.39-42. Matt. viii. 4. By this command he gave the mercy that has cleansed them. He them an implied assurance that they was q Samaritan. See Note, Matt. x. 5. would be healed. For the design for This rendered his conduct more remark. which they were to go was to exhibit able and striking in the sight of the Jews the evidence that they were restored, They considered the Samaritans as pe. and to obtain permission from the priest culiarly wicked, and themselves as pe: to mingle again in society. It may also culiarly holy. This example showed be observed that this required no small them, like the parable of the good Sameasure of faith on their part, for he maritan, that in this they were mistaken. did not first heal them, and then tell And one design of this seems to have them to go; he told them to go without been to break down the opposition beexpressly assuring them that they would tween the Jews and Samaritans, and to be healed, and without as yet any evi- bring the former to more charitable dence to show to the priest. So sinners, judgment respecting the latter. defiled with the leprosy of sin, should 17, 18. Where are the nine? Jesus put faith in the Lord Jesus, and obey his had commanded them to go to the priest, commands, with the fullest confidence and they were probably literally obeythat he is able to heal them, and that he ing the commandment. They were will do it, if they follow his directions; impatient to be healed, and selfish in and that in due time they shall have the wishing it, and had no gratitude to God, fullest evidence that their peace is made or the benefactor. Jesus did not for. with God, and that their souls shall by bid their expressing gratitude to him for him be declared free from the defilement his mercy. He rather seems to reprove of sin. I Were cleansed. Were cured, them for not doing it.-One of the first or made whole.

feelings of the sinner cleansed from sin, * 15, 16. One of them, &c. This man, is a desire to praise his great benefactor. sensible of the power of God, and grate. And a real willingness to obey his com ful for his mercies, returned to express mandments, is not inconsistent with a his gratitude to God, for his goodness. wish to render thanks to him for his Instead of obeying at once the letter of mercy. With what singular propriety the command, he first expressed his may this question now be asked where thanks to God, and to his great benefac- are the nine? And what a striking il, tor. There is no evidence, however, that lustration is this of human nature, and he did not, after he had given thanks to of the ingratitude of men! One had God, and had poured out his joy at the come back to give thanks for the favor feet of Jesus, go to the priest as he was bestowed on him; the others were directed. Indeed he could not have heard of no more. So now. When been restored to society without doing it. men are restored from dangerous sickBut he first poured out his thanks to ness, here and there one comes to give God, and gave him praise for his won- thanks to God - but where are the derful recovery. The first duty of sin- nine ?' When men are defended from ners, after they have been forgiven, and danger; when they are recovered from have the hope of eternal life, is to pros- the perils of the sea; when a steamboat trate thernselves at the feet of their Great is destroyed and a large part of crew Benefactor, and to consecrate them- and passengers perish, here and there selves to his service. Then let them go one of those who are saved acknowledg. and show to others the evidence that es the goodness of God, and renders they are cleansed. Let them go and min-him praise. But where are the mass of g!ė, like a restored leper, with their fam- them? They give no thanks they of ilies and friends, and show by the purity fer no praise.' They go about their usual and holiness of their lives how great is employments, to mingle in the scenes

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