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Spirit of truth, is come, he will same, through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen. guide you into all truth: for "he shall not speak of him"self; but whatsoever he shall "hear (z), that shall he speak: "and he will shew you things to He shall glorify me:
"for he shall receive of mine, "and shall shew it unto you. "All things that the Father hath 66 are mine therefore said I, "that he shall take of mine, and "shall shew it unto you.'
Fifth Sunday after Easter.
O LORD, from whom all good things do come; Grant to us thy humble servants, that by thy holy inspiration we may think those things that be good, and by thy merciful guiding may perform the
(x)" Hear," i.e. either from God or me. In the next verses our Lord says, "He shall receive of mine, and all things "that the Father hath are mine;" so that it will be the same whether the communication is by me or God.
(a) Doers." The necessity of good deeds is strongly pressed by our Saviour, and the apostles, ante 33. note on Philipp. iv. 5. and yet it should seem by one part of this Epistle, that there were some who taught that "faith without works" might suffice. In Jam. iii. 14. he says, "What doth it profit, my brethren, "though a man say he hath faith, and "have not works; can faith save him?" So, verse 17. "Faith, if it hath not works, is dead ;" and, verse 19. "The "devils believe," (that is, have faith) "and tremble." Indeed, if the tree is good, it must produce good fruit. See ante 139. note on John. xv. 2.
(b) "For he," i. e. " who ;" it is not every one who forgets, and the parallel only holds with those who do.
(c) "Forgetteth." A hearer, whose condu& is not influenced, is in at least as bad a situation as if he forgot. If the
The Epistle. James i. 22. ye doers (a) of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man be holding his natural face in a glass: for (b) he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth (c) what manner of man he was. But whoso looketh into the perfect (d) law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be bles sed in his (e) deed. If (f) any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man's religion is vain. Pure religion (g), and undefiled before
word, like a glass, shews him his defects, and he will not correct them, he in effec straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was.
(d) "Perfect law of liberty," i.e. the gospel dispensation; he calls it "the "law of liberty" again, ch. ii. v. 12. and he might mean, that it was a law which was free from the bondage of ceremonial ordinances, and required inward purity and good acts, and nothing St. Paul, when he presses upon the Ga latians to rely solely upon the gospel, and to pay no attention to the Mosaic insti tutions, says, Gal. v. t. "Stand fast, "therefore, in the liberty wherewith "Christ hath made us free, and be not " entangled again in the yoke of bund"age."
(e) "His deed," i. e. all he does.
(f)" If," &c. One of the first requisites of a "doer of the word" is to keep his tongue under proper restraint. See ante 85, note on Eph. v. 4.
(g) "Pure religion," &c. The sum of religion is beneficence and purity. In Micah vi. 8. is another summary: "What "doth the Lord require of thee, but to
()" In my name," i. e. on the ground of being my disciples.
(k) Will pray the Father." I shall have no occasion; the Father shall do it of himself.
(1) "Be scattered," i. e. shall desert me. So Matt. xxvi. 31. "All ye shall "be offended because of me," i. e. shall fall off from me, shall be afraid to declare your adherence to me "this night," i. e. the same night of which St. John speaks; and accordingly, in the selfsame night, they "all forsook him and "fled," and Peter three times denied knowing him.
His disciples said unto him, "Lo, 29. "now speakest thou plainly, and "speakest no proverb. Now 30
are we sure that thou knowest "all things, and needest not that
any man should ask thee: by "this we believe that thou camest "forth from God." Jesus an- 31. swered them, "Do ye now be"lieve? Behold, the hour cometh, 32. (6 yea, is now come, that ye shall "be scattered (1), every man to "his own, and shall leave me ❝alone: and yet I am not alone, "because the Father is with me. "These things have I spoken 33. ❝ unto you, that in me ye might "have peace (m). In the world
ye shall have tribulation (n): "but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world."
GRANT, we beseech thee, Almighty God, that like as we do believe thine only-begotten Son
(m) "Peace," i. e. comfort, from an v. 33. assurance that your dependance on me would not be vain.
(n) "Tribulation." The prospect of v.33. "tribulation in the world" was not calculated to bring back such of our Saviour's followers as had once deserted him, nor to produce new converts. How then are we to account for the subsequent return of the apostles, their constancy and intrepidity, and for the numbers who embraced Christianity? Upon the supposition that the disciples really saw our Saviour in several instances after his crucifixion, that they were enabled to speak languages they had never learnt, to perform miracles, and to execute other powers of the spirit, the whole is intelligible and natural; were it not for this supposition, the thing seems unaccountable.
our Lord Jesus Christ to have ascended into the heavens; so we may also in heart and mind thither ascend, and with him continually dwell, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end. Amen.
For the Epistle. Acts i. 1. THE former (0) treatise have I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach, 2. until the day in which he was taken up, after that he through the Holy Ghost had given commandments unto the apostles whom he 3. had chosen to whom also he shewed himself alive after his pas
(0) "Former treatise," i. e. the Gospel according to St. Luke. The Acts are supposed to have been written by St. Luke, and to have been published about A.D. 64. They do not record the actions of all the disciples, but are principally confined to the works of St. Peter and St. Paul, and to part of their works only. They state nothing of St. Peter after Herod's death, A.D.44, though he lived twenty-four years afterwards, and but little of St. Paul till he went to Iconium, A. D. 46, twelve years after his conversion; nor do they state any thing of St. Paul after his reaching Rome. St. Luke was much with St. Paul from A. D. 46, to A. D. 58.
(p) "Seen." Their conviction from seeing him after his resurrection, and from the powers conferred on them by the Holy Ghost, of speaking languages they had never learnt, healing diseases, casting out devils, &c. accounts satisfactorily for their intrepidity and perseverance in preaching the gospel.
(9)" Forty days," not uninterruptedly, but occasionally during that time. The apostles mention eight distinct appearances: the appearances were such as fully to satisfy the apostles, and the power given them by the Holy Ghost was a point in which they could not be deceived.
(r) "The promise," of the Com- v. 4. forter, or spirit of truth, mentioned repeatedly by our Saviour in his conversa tion at the last supper, the night he was betrayed. John xiv. 17. 26.-xv. 26.— xvi. 7. 13. ante 147. post 155..
(s) "John," i. e. the Baptist. (t)" With water." So said the Bap- v.5. tist himself, Matt. iii. 11. "I indeed baptize you with water unto repent. ance; but he that cometh after me" (i. e. the Messiah)" is mightier than I; "he shall baptize you with the holy "ghost and with fire." I only assume to bring you to repentance, to prepare you for the Christ; it is from him you are to expect your further advancement and powers.
(u)" Not many days hence." It oc- v.5. curred on the day of Pentecost, i.c. Whitsunday, ten days after the Ascen
(x)" Restore," &c. Even at this v.6. time they seem to have expected that our Saviour was to restore temporal power to the Jews. They were not aware that the kingdom of heaven, Christ's king. dom, was, as he says, John xviii. 36. "not of this world," but (as he states Luke xvii. 21.) "the kingdom of God "is within you," that is, it is a domi nion over the heart, mind, passions, and propensities of man,
he said unto them, "It is not for -- you to know the times or the . seasons which the Father hath put in his own power. But ye "shall receive power, after that "the Holy Ghost is come upon σε you and ye shall be witnesses હું unto me both in Jerusalem, " and in all Judea, and in Sama"ria, and unto the (y) uttermost 9. " part of the earth." And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of 10. their sight. And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven, as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; II. which also said, "Ye men of "Galilee, why stand ye gazing
up into heaven? This same "Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come "in like manner as ye have seen "him go into heaven."
The Gospel. Mark xvi. 14. JESUS appeared unto the eleven
(y)" Uttermost part of the earth." Our Saviour had told them before his crucifixion, in his noted prophecy of the destruction of Jerusalem, Matt. xxiv. 14. "This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for
"unto all nations, and then shall the "end" (i. e. the destruction of Jerusalem) "come;" and accordingly the gospel was preached before the destruction of Jerusalem in Asia Minor, Greece, and Italy, as far north as Scythia, south as Ethiopia, east as Parthia and India, and west as Spain and Britain, 2 Newt. Proph. 156. This shews the zeal of the apostles, their conviction of the truth of what they preached, and God's assistance to the cause. It shews too that the gift of tongues, the power of speaking languages they had never learnt, was not a mere display of God's power, nor a mere attestation from him that he was
as they sat at meat, and upbraided them with their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they believed not them which had seen him after he was risen. And he 15. said unto them, "Go ye into all "the world, and (z) preach the "Gospel to every creature. He 16. "that believeth and is (a) bap"tized shall be saved; but he "that believeth not shall be "damned. And these (b) signs 17. "shall follow them that believe: "In my name shall they cast out "devils; they shall speak with new tongues; they shall take 18. "up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not "hurt them; they shall lay hands "on the sick, and they shall re
cover." So then after the 19. Lord had spoken unto them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God. And they went forth, and preached 20. every-where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following.
Sunday after Ascension Day.
O GOD, the King of Glory, who hast exalted thine only Son Jesus Christ with great triumph unto thy kingdom in heaven; We beseech thee, leave us not comfortless; but send to us thine Holy Ghost to comfort us, and exalt us unto the same place whither our Saviour Christ is gone before; who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end. Amen.
The Epistle. 1 Peter iv. 7. THE (c) end of all things is at hand; be ye therefore sober, and 8. watch unto prayer. And above all things have fervent (d) charity among yourselves: for charity shall (e) cover the multitude 9. of sins. Use hospitality one to 10. another, without grudging. As
v.7. (c) "The end," i, e. probably the time so often spoken of as "the day of "the Lord," "the coming of the Lord," the great period of the destruction of the Jews. See ante 29. note on Lu. xxi. 25. It is called "the end," several times in our Saviour's noted prediction of the destruction of the Jews, Matt. xxiv. 6.13, 14.-Lu, xxi. 9. and it did put an end to the temple, the sacrifices, the ceremonies, and the nation. Has the sceptre at any time since been in Judah, or a lawgiver between his feet? See Gen, xlix. 10, ante 62. note on Mal. iii. 1,
(d) "Fervent charity," i. e. warm, active benevolence. So our Saviour says, John xiii. 35. by this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another." See ante 24. note on Rom. xiii. 8. Christianity in culcates not only benevolence " among "ourselves," to relations, neighbours, &c. but general good-will to all man
(e) "Cover," i. e. obtain remission for-for" the multitude," r, 66 a multi"tude." So Luke vii. 47, when the wo