Sivut kuvina

The number of fibres of which a single thread is composed, contribute greatly to its strength, as in the construction of common ropes, which are formed by a number of fibres twisted together. To give greater firmness to the web, the ends of the threads are spread out in a trumpet shape, and by that means grasp more firmly the object to which the line fastened.

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14. Morning Reading, 1 Kings xxi. Morning Lesson, Matt. xxiv. 9–14.

NOTES ON THE LESSON. VERSE 9. Of whom was Jesus speaking ? Of his disciples. What is here meant by afflicted? See Mark xiii. 9. Was this fulfilled? See Acts iv. 3 ; vii. 59; xii. 2 ; xvi. 23, 24 ; xviii. 12; xxiv. 24; xxv. 23. Was it thought a crime to be a Christian? Yes ; multitudes were put to death for bearing the name only. VERSE 10. What is meant by being offended"? Falling away from a profession of religion. See 1 John ii. 19. How did they betray

• ? By revealing the names and places of concealment of real Christians, in order to secure their own safety. See Luke xxi. 16; Mark xiii. 12.- VERSE 11. Did Christ often warn his dis. ciples against false teachers ? Yes. See Matt. vii. 15; Acts xx. 29; 2 Peter ii. 1; Matthew xxiv. 5—24.–VERSE 12. What is meant by the word wax''? To become. It is an old Saxon word


not now in use. The fear of treason and death would cause many to become feeble and weak in their religion.—VERSE 13. He that bears these persecutions faithfully, and does not fear death for Christ's sake, shall have his reward in heaven. Matthew x. 22; Mark xiii. 13; Rev. ii. 10.-VERSE 14. Within thirty years after this prophecy, churches were established in all those regions. See Col. i. 5, 6–23; Romans i. 8, x. 18.–Of what was the gospel a witness ? Of the end of the Jewish dispensation; of the destruction of the temple and the city.

IMPROVEMENT.—Contrast with these times the privileges and responsibilities of our own, and show that to be a Christian we must be willing to give up everything for Christ's sake. Matthew X. 37, 38, 39.

Afternoon Reading, Exod. x. Afternoon Lesson, Matt. xxiv. 15—28.

NOTES ON THE LESSON. VERSE 15. What is meant bythe abomination of desolation"? It is a Hebrew expression, meaning a hateful destroyer. The Gentiles were held in abomination by the Jews. See Acts x. 28. It is here applied to the Roman army entering Jerusalem. Luke xxi. 20. Where is this prophecy found? See Daniel ix. 26, 27, xi. 31, xii. 11. By whom is the remark Whoso readeth,&c. made? Some think tiy Matthew to draw particular attention to the prophecy, others by Christ himself; probably the former.—VERSE 16. What does this teach us? That Christians should seek a place of safety. Judea was surrounded by mountains, where they could hide themselves. See 1 Sam. xiii. 6; Joshua x. 16.–VERSE 17. The roofs of the eastern houses were made flat for walking, &c.; and persons could descend into the street by outside stairs. The meaning is—that however persons were occupied when this calamity overtook them, they must flee without delay.-VERSE 20. Were journies prohibited on the Sabbath day? See Exodus xvi. 29. The gates of the city were usually closed, so that flight would have been impossible. See Nehemiah xiii. 19–22.—VERSE 21. What does the word tribulation" mean? Calamity, or suffering. Luke xxi. 24 specifies this tribulation. Josephus, a Jewish historian, wonderfully confirms this awful prophecy. He says

thàt "no fewer than 11,000 persons perished in Jerusalem. rushing into the city, the soldiers slew whomsoever they found, without distinction, and burnt the houses, and all the people who had fled into them. The whole city ran with blood, insomuch that many things that were burning were extinguished by the

And now And you

blood. A woman of distinguished rank having been plundered by the soldiers, in hunger and despair, killed, and roasted, and ate her own babe!" This cruel act was a remarkable fulfilment of Deut. xxviii. 53, 56, 57.-VERSE 22. Who are meant by the elect? Christians. There were many true followers of Christ in Judea, and for their sakes this terrible judgment should not last long.VERSE 23. It is as if Christ had said " You have evidence from the fulfilment of my prophecy, that I am the Messiah. cannot be deceived by these impostors.”_VERSE 27. To whatcoming" does our Lord refer? Probably to his coming to destroy Jerusalem-it would be as unexpected as lightning.–VERSE 28. This verse is proverbial. Vultures always found out dead bodies to de. vour them; so the Roman army woull come and destroy Jerusalem, which was then almost lifeless. Luke xvii. 37.

IMPROVEMENT.—Show that God is a God of judgment as well as of mercy; that He punished the Jews because of their rejection of Christ. If we refuse Him, how much more terrible will be our condemnation. See Heb. xii. 25.

JULY 21. Morning Reading, 1 Ķings xxii. 1—36. Morning Lesson, Matt. xxiv. 26–35.

NOTES ON THE LESSON. VERSE 29. Are great calamities often represented in Scripture by the darkening of the sun anů moon, &c. ? Yes. See Isaiah xiü. 9, 10, xxiv. 4, 1. 3; Joel iii. 15. What does Luke add? Luke xxi. 25. All these are figurative of great and terrible judgments.VERSE 30. How was the sign of the Son of manseen at the destruction of Jerusalem ? In the fulfilment of these predictions. Does Christ also refer to his second coming ? Yes. See also 1 Thess. iv. 16; 2 Peter iii. 10-12; Rev. i. 7.-VERSE 31. Who are angels ? A race of beings more exalted than man, who have never sinned, and are employed in serving God day and night. Heb. i. 14. Were trumpets used at the Jewish assemblies? Yes. For the same purpose as we use church bells. See Lev. xxv. 9; Numbers Who are the elect"? God's chosen people.

What is meant by the four winds''? The four quarters of the world. See Ezek. xxxvii. 9; Mark xiii. 27.—VERSE 32. What is meant here by parable"? An illustration: as if Christ had said, “As ye judge of the coming of summer by the leaves on the fig-tree, so judge of the destruction of this city by the signs round about." Luke xxi. 28–31.—VERSE 34. Who were this generation! The race of men then living. A generation lasts about thirty or forty

X. 2.

years. Did Christ here refer to the judgment day? No; to the destruction of Jerusalem, which took place about forty years after this was spoken. Mark xiii. 30. Luke xxi. 32.-VERSE 35. Psalm iïi. 25–27. Matt. v. 18. Heb. i. 10–12.

IMPROVEMENT.-Dwell upon the certainty of the coming of the judgment-day, and the immense importance of a preparation for it. Matt. xxv. 31–46.

Afternoon Reading, Ex. xi., xii. 1—20. Afternoon Lesson, Matt. xxiv. 36–51.

NOTES ON THE LESSON. VERSE 36. See also Mark xiii. 32. What day" does Christ refer to ? The day of Jerusalem's destruction. It may also apply to the judgment day. How was it the Son" did not know that day ? It was only in his human nature that he was ignorant of it. As God he knows all things. John i. 1, 2, 3. Zech. xiv. 7.–VERSE 37. “Noe,” the Greek way of writing Noah.—VERSE 38. See Gen. vi. 5, 11, 12, 13; Luke xvii. 26, 27.-VERSE 40. This calamity shall come suddenly; there can be no escape from it. — VERSE 41. Was grinding in the East generally performed by women? Yes. See Exod. xi. 5. The meaning of this verse is the same as the last.–VERSE 42. Matt. xxv. 13. Mark xiii. 33.- VERSE 43. What is the meaning of the good man? It is an old way of saying the father of a family.–VERSE 44. Rev. iii. 3 ; xvi. 15.–VERSE 45. By the conduct of a faithful servant of a family, Christ intended to denote a faithful Christian in his church. Ministers are to teach and warn their hearers. John xxi. 15.–VERSE 46. What is the meaning of the word "blessed? Happy.-VERSE 47. A faithful servant shall be rewarded.-VERSE 48. Who does the wicked servant represent? Those who disbelieve the bible, and God's ministers.—VERSE 51. Was this punishment anciently practised? Yes. See Dan. ï. 5; 1 Sam. xv. 33; Hebrews xi. 37. It signifies that the wicked servant shall be severely punished. Matt. viii. 12; XXV. 30.

IMPROVEMENT.-Show the happiness of early loving and serving Jesus Christ faithfully, and point out the fearful doom of the wicked.

JULY 28.

Morning Reading, 1 Kings xxii. 37–53. 2 Kings i.

Morning Lesson, Matt. xxv. 1–13.

NOTES ON THE LESSON. VERSE 1. What does the phrase kingdom of heaven" here mean? Christ's coming at the day of judgment. Is his coming often represented as a marriage ? Yes. See Matt. ix. 15; John iii. 29; Ephes. v. 25 ; Rev. xix. 7, xxi. 9. Who do these virgins represent? The church of God, or his professed people. 2 Cor. xi. 2. Marriages in the East were performed in the evening, and the friends of the bridegroom generally attended with lamps or torches. _VERSE 3. What does the conduct of those who were foolish signify ? Those who profess to love Christ, but are destitute of true grace in their hearts.-VERSE 4. Who are intended by the wise virgins ? Those who are prepared by sincere love to Christ, for his coming.

– VERSE 5. What is meant by the bridegroom tarrying ? Delaying his coming Do we learn from this verse that all Christians will be asleep or careless when Christ shall come? No; many may be


but it is designed simply to show the duty of being ready at all times. Verse 13.-VERSE 7. How did they trim their lamps ? By putting fresh oil in them. What does this represent? The conduct of many at the approach of death : they then begin to make ready, and are alarmed, and ask the help of others.—VERSE 8. Why had their lamps gone out ? See verse 3.-VERSE 9. What does this signify? That we cannot help one another at the time of death. Nothing but faith in Christ can save us.—VERSE 10. What is meant by being ready for the bridegroom? Prepared to meet Christ, and to follow him into heaven. John v. 24. Acts iii. 19. 2 Tim. iv. 6–8. To whom will the door be shut? To all those who do not love Him. There will be then no more opportunities for repentance. Eccles. ix. 10. Matt. xxv. 46.–VERSE 12. See Matt. vii. 23. In what sense is the word "knowused here? As loving or approving. Christ knows all men, but he loves only his true disciples. John X. 27.–VERSE 13. This is the design or moral of the whole parable. The coming of the Saviour is certain —the precise time is unknown; therefore we should be always watchful and ready.

IMPROVEMENT.-Show the great importance of a constant preparation for death, and seriously ask to which of these two classes do we belong. Matt. xxv. 31–46. Luke xii. 35.

Afternoon Reading, Exod. xii. 21-51.
Afternoon Subject, The History of the Nonconformists.

CONVERSATION ON THE SUBJECT. When was the Reformation in England publicly begun? In the reign of King Henry VIII., 1534, when he quarreled with the Pope. Was the Church so reformed in this reign as to satisfy all persons of protestant principles ? No: for notwithstanding Henry's

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