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14 He passes privately thro' Galilee with his Disciples. Sect. 91. of a contrary Principle! In how many Instances does that passionate Exclama

t ion of the Father in this story, fuit ús? Lord, we believe: belo thou our UnbeX. 24. lief! How difficult is it, in the Midst of so much Guilt and Weakness, of fo

much Perplexity and Unworthiness, to believe the Promises of Forgiveness and Preservation, of Grace and Glory. Yet we may humbly hope, that he, who by his Grace has wrought the Divine Principle in our Souls, will maintain it there. Only let it be our Concern, to oppose those Corruptions, which

would enervate and suppress it. Perhaps there are some of them, which Mat. xvii. will not be driven out but by Prayer and Fasting, by deep Humiliation, and

more than ordinary Solemnity and Intenseness of Devotion. But surely they have little Regard to the Peace and Security of their Souls, who can allot only a few hasty Moments to them, when they have whole Hours and Days to bestow, not only on the Labours, but even on the Amusements of Life.

21.

S E C T. XCII.
The Disciples are offended, at the Warning CHRisT gives

them of his approaching Sufferings. He makes a miraculous
Provision for paying the Tribute Money. Mat. XVII. 22,
to the End. Mark IX. 30,---33.- Luke IX.-43---45.
MARK IX. 30.

MARK IX. 30. Sect. 92. AND while every one of the Spectators was AND (while they wonw namazed at this stupendous Miracle wrought on

hi dred every one at all Mark IX. the Child who had been so terribly possessed, and at they departed thence, and

Things which Jesus did, ] 30.

all the other extraordinary Things which Jesus did, passed thro' Galilee; and he they (i. e, our Lord and his Apostles,) departed from would not that any Man

should know it. [LUKE IX. thence, and passed from the Mountain on which he

-43.-)
had been transfigured, tbro' the rest of Galilee: And
he contrived to do it as privately as he could; for be
was deforoūs that none might know [it] left the impor-

tant Conversation, into which he then entered with
31 his Disciples, should be interrupted. For while 31-For (while they a-
they continued travelling and conversing in Galilee, bode in Galilee, Jesus] taught

his Disciples, and said unto and especially when they came to the Places where them, (Mar. XVII. 22.-they lodged, Jefus taught bis Disciples (a) more Luke IX.-43.]

largely (a) For Jefus taught his Disciples.] Mark assigns this as the Reason, why he desired, his Journey should be private, viz. that he might have an Opportunity to talk over this Subject at large: Which shews, that the Continuance or Abode in Galilee mentioned by Matthew, was only the short Stay they made in the Places where they lodged; and indeed he could not fo conveniently speak to all the Twelve, while they were actually travelling.

(6) Apply

LUKE IX. 44. Let thour Appa disagreeable soever they for the Son of Man,

ink down in Of Mane them of reigning a shortly and thalli Rage; ind

They are troubled to hear of his approaching Sufferings. 15

largely than he had done before, what was to befal Sect. 92.
him. (Compare Mat. xvi. 21. Mark viii. 31.
Luke ix. 22. Vol. i. pag. 549.)

31. And he said unto them with great Solemnity, 3h. LUKE IX. 44. Let these Apply your Ears attentively to these Sayings (6), Luke IX. Sayings fink down into your ; Eárs: for the Son of Man how disagreeable soever they may be, and let 44. shall be delivered into the them sink into your Hearts; for the Son of Man, Hands of Men, {and they instead of reigning in that Grandeur which you shall kill him; and after that he is killed, he thall rise the expect, mall very shortly be betrayed into the third Day. ] [Mark IX. Hands of sinful Men (c), and shall seem for a. -31. MAT. XVII. -22, while to be a helpless Prey to their Rage ; for 23.-)

they mall put him to Death in a most cruel and
infamous Manner; but they shall not finally
triumph over him; for after he is thus sain,
he hall rise from the Dead on the third Day,
according to the Intimations I have often given

you. (See Vol. i. pag. 142, 143. 384. 539.)
45 But they understood But they were so strongly prepossessed with 45
not this Saying, and it was the Expectation of a Temporal Kingdom, that
hid from them, that they they understood not this Saying, plain as it was,
perceived it not: and they
feared to ask him of that and the Sense of it was hid from them, so that
Saying, (and were exceeding they perceived it not ; foolishly imagining it incon-
lorry.]MAT. XVI. –23. fiftent with what the Sacred Oracles had declared.
MARK IX. 32.]

of the glorious Success of the Son of Man, and the
universal Empire he was to establish. (Dan. vii. 14.)

And yet they were afraid to ask him what was the
Meaning of that Saying, lest he should upbraid them
as unteachable ; considering how lately he had
given them the like Warning before, and how se-
verely he had rebuked Peter for endeavouring to
dissuade him from it: Nevertheless they perceived,
that their Master foretold his own Death, and were
exceeding forry, that a Person of so excellent and
amiable a Character, from whom they had enter-
tained such glorious Expectations, should meet
with so unworthy a Return.

And (b) Apply your Ears to these Sayings.] This seems to me a just Translation, of JETE UPHS HS, Ta wla vuan trs nog 85. T8l8s, which is literally, Put these Sayings to your Ears; a Phrase which Our Language will hardly admit. It intimates the propensity they had, to withdraw and turn. away their Ears, from such Declarations, as he was now about to make.

(6) Shall Shortly be betrayed, &c.) Mark has expressed it in the Present Tense, and says, The Son of Man is delivered: But nothing is more common in the Sacred Language, than to speak of what should certainly and quickly be, as if it was already done. Compare John xii; 31. xvii. 4, 11, 24. Eph. ii. 5, 6. Heb, xii. 22. and Rev. xviii. 2, and 4. --- The Explicacions of many other Scriptures depends on this obvious Remark,

(d) The

trayed, &c. tions, as he was openfity they hear Ears; a phone cu els ous

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1.6 He pays the Tribute by a Miracle at Capernaum. ' Sect. 92. And soon after this, be came with his Disciples Mat. XVII. 24. And

t o Capernaum: And when they were come [thither,] [he, came to Capernaum : Mat: XVII. tbe Receivers and ColleEtors of the Sacred Tri- this her, they that received

and] when they were come 24.

bute (d), which was gathered every Year thro' Tribute - Money, came to all their Cities. came to Peter, and said. Does not Peter, and said, Doth not your Master, who has the Character of so religious ÍMARK IX. 33.-)

your Master pay Tribute ? a Teacher, pay the usual Tribute of the Didrach

ma (e) or Half-Shekel to the Service of the Tem25 ple?' And he says, Yes, I know that he uses 25 He faith, Yes. And to pay it, and make no Doubt but he will do when he was come into the

House, Jesus prevented him, it now. And when he came into the House,

saying, What thinkest thou, fics, who was there, before, prevented him, before Simon? of whom do the he could speak of the Affair in Question, and Kings of the Earth take CuJaid to him, What dost thou think, Simon, and

Atom or Tribute ? of their

and own Children, or of Stranwhat seems fit to thee on this Occasion? Of gers? whom do the Kings of the Earth receive Custom

or Tribute ? of their own Sons, or of Strangers ? 26. Peter says to him, Lord, it is evident they re- 26 Peter faith unto him, ceive it only of Strangers. Jesus said to him,

Of Strangers. Jesus faith

unto him, Then are the Then the Sons by Virtue of their Fathers Dispen- Children free. fation are free from the Obligation : And on the like Principle, I, as the Son of God, might plead an Exemption here, especially as I have not now the Sum, which is required towards the Mainte-, pance of the Temple-Worship. Neverthe- 27 Notwithstanding, left

we should offend them, go less, left we should offend them, by giving an Occa- behoud

thou to the Sea, and cast an fion to imagine that I put any Slight on the Tem

Hook, ple, or lest others from my Example should in far different Circumstances omit this Contribution, I will not debate the Matter, but rather work á Miracle, than fail in the Payment. Go therefore down to the Sea, and when thou comest to the

neighbour

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(d) The Collectors of the Sacred Tribute.] Josephus has expressly asserted, that each of the Jews used yearly to pay a Didrachma, or Half-Shekel, the Piece of Money here mentioned, to the Service of the Temple: (See Jofeph. Antiq. lib. xviii. cap. 9. (al. 12.) f. 1.) A Custom, which probably took its Rise from the Demand of that Sum from each of the Israelites, whenever they were numbred. Exod. xxx. 13. And therefore, with Beza, Casaubon, Hammond, Grotius, and many other great Criticks, I chuse to understand this Passage, as referring to that, rather than to any Civil Tax; chiefly because I think, notwithstanding what Salmafius says to the contrary, (against Milton, pag. 259.) our Lord's Argument ver. 25, 26. can otherwise have no Force. The Reader will find an excellent Note in Grotius here, which renders it unnecellary to inlarge any farther. ,

(e) Does not your Master pay the usual Tribute, &c.] It seems then to have been a voluntary Thing, which Custom, rather than Law, had established. In Nehemiah's Days it was accounted To, and the Sum was then something lower. See Neh. x. 32.

(f) A

Reflections on the Poverty and Wisdom of CHRIST. .17 Hook, and take up the Fith neighbouring Shore, throw in a Hook, and take the Sect. 92. that first cometh up: and first Fish that comes up; and when thou hast opened when thou hast opened his Mouth, thou make find a its Mouth, thou Malt there find a piece of Silver, Piece of Money : that take, Coin, called a Statera, which it has just swallowand give unto them for me ed (f); take that, and give it to them that collect and thee.

the Tribute, both for me and thee ; for thou
knowest it will answer their Demands for both.
Accordingly Peter went, and finding the Money
in the Fiõh's Mouth, paid it according to his Lord's
Command.

IMPROV E M E N T. L O W flow and untractable were the Minds of the Apostles, who Mark ix. 32:

N understood not these plain Things, when thus inculcated again and again! But on the other Hand, how much Integrity does it thew in the Historian, to record what seemed so little to the Honour of himself, and his Brethren? In this Respect, and many others, surely Credit rises to the Gospel, even by Occasion of the Infirmities of those to whom it was committed, and out of Weakness they are made strong. Let us however learn, to be upon our Guard against the Prejudices of Worldly Interest, fince, as we see, they may take such strong Hold of Minds, in the main upright and pious. And therefore let us earnestly pray, that God would give us a greater Relish for spiritual and eternal Blessings.

It cannot surely become us, to seek the Grandeur and Riches of this Mat. xvii. World, when our Blessed Master was so poor, that he could not pay this 27. little Tribute, without having Recourse to a Miracle. Yet this he chuses, sather than to give Offence by a Refusal, how justly soever he might have pleaded an Exemption from it. Let us learn from hence that Meekness of Ver. 26. Wisdom, which will teach us to seek the Interest of others, rather than our own ; and rather to consider, how we may edify others by the Abun

dance V A Statera, which it has just swallowed.] The Statera was (as appears in Part from. this Text,) a Piece of Coin, in Value about Two Half-Shekels, or, according to Dr. Prin deaux, near Three Shillings of our Money, tho' most' Criticks reckon the Shekel but about Half a Crown. See Drusius, on this Verse and the 24th.— I see no Reason with Schmidius to suppose, this Piece of Money was created on this Occasion: But supposing, as in the Paraphrase, that the Fish had accidentally swallowed it, (perhaps as it was falling into the Water, near some other Prey,) I cannot forbear remarking, how illustrious a Degree of Knowledge and Power our Lord discovered in the Case before us ; Knowledge, in penetrating into the Bowels of this Animal, tho' in the Sea ; and Power, in directing this particular Fish to Peter's Hook, tho' he himself was at a Distance. Hardly any Circumstance can be imagined more fit, to encourage him, and his Brethren, in a firm Dependance on Divine Providence. And it is very natural to reflect, how easily Christ could, if he had seen fit, have drawn up immense Treasures by this very Method, from the Heart of the Sea : But he intended, that Ais Servants should be inriched and adorned in a much nobler Manner, than with Pearls and costly Array.

VOL. II.

18

The Disciples contend, who of them foould be greatest.
Sect. 92. dance of our good Works, than how we may excuse ourselves in the
W Omission of any. That Extent of Knowledge and Power, which our Lord

displayed on this Occafion, can never be at a Loss for Means to repay,
whatever we may thus facrifice for his fake.

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33

SECT. XCIII.
Christ reproves his Apostles for their contention, who

pould be greatest ; and recommends to them Humility and
Mortification. Mark IX. – 33,--- 37. 42, --- to the End.
Mat. XVIII. 1,---9. Luke IX. 46,---48.
MARK IX. 33.

MÁR K IX. -33.
Sect. 03. M TOw when Peter was returned from the Sea- AND being in the House,
I V Side, having taken the Fich which fupplied

n he afked them, What Mark IX. him with the Tribute-Money (a), our Lord, from

was it that ye disputed a

mong yourselves by the a late Occurrence which he had observed among Way? his Disciples, took Occasion to recommend Humility to them: And being in the House with his Apostles, that he might naturally introduce the Discourse he intended, be asked them, About what were you disputing with each other on the Way in so eager a Manner, that I could not forbear taking particular Notice of it?

But instead of answering him directly, they were 34 But they held their confounded with the Question, and continued Peace : for by the Way

(there arofe a Reasoning afilent, being ashamed to confess the Truth ; for mong them, and they had as they were travelling on the Way, a Controversy disputed among themselves, arose among them, [and] they had warmly debated [which of them should be the Matter one with another, which of them Mould greatelt.] (LUKE II. 46.5 be the greatest Man in that Temporal Monarchy, which they assured themselves Jefus, as the expected Messiah, would erect, whatever Sufferings

might lie in the Paffage to it. 35. And Jesus perceiving, notwithstanding their Si- 35 And [Jesus perceiving lence, the secret Thought of their ambitious Heart, the Thought of their Heart,}

and (a) When Peter was returned, &c.] In order to remind those, who may hear these Sections read in a Family, of the Connection of them, I have generally introduced each, with a brief Hint at the Subject of the former ; which tho it makes the Paraphrase on the first Verse of a Section sometimes much longer, than I should otherwise have chosen, yet may I hope be attended with Advantage sufficient to ballance that Inconvenience.

(1) Called

34

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