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might have been able to have caft out could not cure him,
the Devil, and to have cured my Son;
but they could not.

17. Then Jefus rebuked his Difciples for their want of Faith, faying: How long muft I be with you? And how many Miracles muft I work among you, before you will firmly believe me, will firmly believe me, and attain fuch a degree of Faith in my Name, to which God may annex the Power of working all Miracles? Let the young Man be brought hither to


18. Then they brought him to Jefus; and Jefus commanded the Devil to come out of him; and his Difeafe was perfectly healed.

19. And when the People were gone; the Disciples, grieved that they had not been able to work this Miracle, came to Jefus alone, and asked him what was the Reason, that they were not able to caft out this Devil, and to heal the young Man.


20. Jefus faith: 'Twas for want of Faith in you, as well as in those who defired your Help. For verily if you had never fo little Faith in comparifon, anfwerable in measure to your Office and your Advantages, nothing fhould be too hard for you to effect for the Glory of God and in Confirmation of my Doctrine; but ye fhould be able to do even things feemingly as impoffible, as removing Mountains, and throwing them into the Sea.

21. Only ye muft remember, that God does not grant the Power of working these greater Miracles, fuch as are cafting out Devils, and the like; but to those whofe Faith is ftrengthened by earnest Prayer and Fafting, and ac

17 Then Jefus anfwered and faid, O faithlefs and perverfe fhall I be with you? generation, how long how long fhall I fuffer you? bring him hither to me.

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companied with great Devotion and Purity of Mind.

22. After this, Jefus returned with his Difciples to Capernaum through Galilee; And as they were in the Way, Jefus, to prepare his Difciples that they might not be overwhelmed with Sorrow at his Death, began to re-mind them again, that he muft needs be delivered into the Hands of his Perfecutors;

23. And that he must be flain by them, and that on the third Day he fhould rife again. But the Difciples understood not what he meant by Rifing again, and they were grieved to hear of his Sufferings and Death. 24. Now when they were home to Capernaum, where Jefus used to dwell; the Officers appointed to gather the yearly Offering for the Service of the Temple, came to Peter and asked him, if his Mafter would not pay the ufual Offering.


25 & 26. Peter faid; Yes, I fuppofe fo. And when they were come into the House, and Peter was about to ask him concerning it, Jefus prevented him, faying; Peter, what think you? If earthly Princes ufe to demand Tribute, not of their own Children and Families, but only of others; Do you not think there is the fame Reafon, that I, whom you acknowledge to be the Son of God, fhould be excufed from paying any thing to the Service of the Temple.

27. Nevertheless, that we may not give them any occafion of blaming us, go to the Lake, and caft in a Hook, and take the firft Fish that comes up; and you fhall find a piece


of Money in his Mouth: that take, and give it to the Officers for my Offering and yours.


Innocence and Humility requifite to the making good Christians, ver. 1. Of Scandal, and of Chriftian Reproof, ver. 6. and 15. Of forgiving the Penitent; and the neceffity of fhewing Mercy to others, that we our felves may obtain it of God, ver. 21.

A T this time the Disciples, filled with great Expectations of the Glory of Christ's Kingdom, began to difpute among themselves about Preheminence, and who should be greatest in that Kingdom: till at laft Jefus took Notice of the Difpute, and the Matter † was brought to be decided before him.

fhould offend them,
go thou to the fea,
and take up the fish,
that first cometh up:
and when thou haft
opened his mouth,
thou fhalt find a
piece of money: that
take, and give unto
them for me and



23. Then Jefus, fetting a little Child before them, faid: Ye are in a great Miftake; the Kingdom of God, is not like the Kingdoms of this prefent World; Men fhall not there be exalted, as they are here, by ftriving for Dignity and Preheminence; but they fhall be efteemed only by their

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Not that they directly asked Jefus about it, but only by his difcovering their Debate, Luke ix; 46, 47.



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6 But whofo fhall offend one of

these little ones

which believe in me, it were better for him that a milftone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the fea.

6. On the contrary, he that shall defpife or difcourage, perfecute or feduce any of these humble and innocent Perfons, which believe and obey the Gofpel; better were it for him that he had never been born, or that he had quickly perifhed by fome untimely Death.

7 Wo unto the world because of


7. For dreadful and terrible are the Judgments which God will fend upon the World, for its contemning and difcouraging, for its perfecuting and feducing innocent and good Men. Such indeed is the State of Things, and the to that man by whom Wickedness of Men, that thefe Things

offences: for it muft

needs be that offences come: but wo

the offence cometh!

muft needs happen; and the Provi-
dence of God may for wife Reasons
permit it to be fo: But wo be to that
Man, by whofe Fault this fhall come
to pass, that any humble and good
Man fhall be perfecuted, difcouraged,
or perverted and inticed into Sin.



89. It may perhaps feem a hard Precept to Men of stubborn Spirits, to avoid being the occafion of any of thefe Evils; they muft perhaps be forced to part with fome of their deareft Pleafures, or moft beloved Companions, which may be to them like plucking out a right Eye, or cutting off a right Hand. But if any thing as dear to them even as a right Hand or right Eye, be the occafion of their injuring the cause of Virtue and Piety; they had much better part with it, what difficulties foever may attend their doing fo, than incur the eternal difpleasure of God.

10. Take heed therefore, and do not think it a light thing, to defpife or difcourage, or any way draw into Sin, the meaneft humble and good Man. Do not think it a small thing to lay a Stumbling-block before thofe, for whom God has fo great a Concern, as to fend his Angels from his own immediate Presence to minifter unto them,

and to watch over them.

II. Do not think it a small thing to be the occafion of Their Fall, whom God has thought fit to fend his Son into the World on purpofe to redeem and to fave.

12. For as a Man, that has, for Example, an hundred Sheep; if one of them chance to ftray and be in danger to be loft, he prefently leaves the reft and runs after that, and fearches through all the Country for it;

13. And if he chance to find it, he expreffes even a more fenfible Joy upon occafion of the of that


which was in danger to be loft, than at the fafety of all the reft of the Flock which had never strayed:

8 Wherefore if

thy hand or thy foot
offend thee,cut them
off, and caft them
from thee: it is bet--
ter for thee to enter


into life halt
maimed, rather than
having two hands or
two feet, to be caft
into everlasting fire.

9 And if thine
eye offend thee,.
pluck it out, and
caft it from thee:
it is better for thee
to enter into life
with one eye, ra-
ther than having
two eyes to be caft
into hell-fire.

IO Take heed
that ye defpife not

one of thefe little
ones; for I fay unte
you, that in heaven
their angels do al-
ways behold the face
of my father which
is in heaven.

II For the Son of
man is come to fave

that which was loft.

12 How think ye
if a man have an

hundred fheep, and
one of them be gone
leave the ninety and
aftray, doth he not
nine, and goeth into
the mountains, and
feeketh that which is
gone aftray?

13 And if fo be
that he find it, veri-

ly I fay unto you,
he rejoiceth more
of that sheep, then


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