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heard the whole matter; the end of Christ's coming, and
who are fit for him, as plainly as they did ; and perhaps,
as they did, we may wonder at these gracious words.
But, that they are fulfilled in our ears, is nothing, unless
all be fulfilled in the heart. It was not in them. Let us
mark what follows, and be in fear for ourselves.

22. And all hare him witness, and wondered at the gracious
words which proceeded out of his mouth. And they said. Is not
this Joseph's son ?

23. And he said unto them, Ye will surely say unto me this
proverb. Physician, heal thyself: whatsoever we have heard, done
in Capernaum, do also here in thy country.

24. And he said. Verily I say unto you. No prophet is accepted
in his own country.

25. But I tell you of a truth, many widows were in Israel in the
days of Elias, when the heaven was shut up three years and six
months, when great famine was throughout all the land ;

26. But unto none of them was Elias sent, save uuto Sarepla, a
city of Sidon, unto a woman that was a widow.

27. And many lepers were in Israel in the time of Eliseus the
prophet ; and none of them was cleansed, saving Naaman the

Christ, who knew what was in man, knew what enter-
tainment they would give him and his doctrine : and tiiat,
very few excepted, they would find out some pretence for
cavilling at him, and lose all the benefit of his preaching.
Let us take heed that it be not so with us, the generality,
at all times, go without their remedy.

28. And all they in the synagogue, when they heard these
things, were filled with wrath.

This is a certain effect of the word, where it doe* not

188 ST. LUKE. [chap. IV.

speed its errand. If men are not won by the preaching of
it, they will, of course, hate the preacher. Nay, verily,
but their wrath is against God, whose word it is. O what
a depth of wickedness there is in the hearts and souls of all
unconverted men !

29. And (they) rose up, and thrust him out of the city, and
led him unto the brow of the bill whereon their city was buik, that
they inigbt c as him down headlong.

30. But he passing through the midst of tliem went his vvay.

Thus Christ easily delivered himself from the malice and
power of his enemies, without lessening his affection to-
wards the people who sat in darkness and the shadow of
death. — Edit.

Chap. iv. ver. 31 — 44.


31. And (Jesus) came down to Capernaum, a city of Galilee,
and taught them on the sabbath days.

32. And they were astonished at his doctrine : for his word
was with power.

They clearly perceived that there was something very
extraordinary in him, but notwithstanding that, they were
not generally converted.

33. And in the synagogue there was a man, which had a spirit
of an unclean devil, and cried out with a loud voice,

34. Saving, Let us alone ; what have we to do with thee, thou
Jesus of Nazareth ? art thou come to destroy us .'' I know thee
who thou art ; the Holy One of God.

Some, perhaps, may think that none but a devil could
say to Christ, " What have I to do with thee .?" But every
one says it in cHect, who puts him off from time to time
with excuses.

VEIL 31 44.] ST. LUKE. . 189

35. And Jesus rebuked him, saying, Hold tliy ])cace, and come
out of him. And when the devil had thrown him in the midst,
be came out of him, and liurt him not.

36. And they were all amazed, and spake among themselves,
saying, What a word is this ! for with authority and power he
commandeth the unclean spirits, and they come out.

In every miracle of which you read, keep these things
constantly in mind ; that it is a proof of Christ's power
and will to help us, as he did others ; that he alone can
help us ; and that our healing and cleansing is by as great
a miracle as any of which we read. What can it signify
to us to hear of his cures, if we do not come to him for
our own ? But when men attempt to come to Christ di-
rectly, naked, helpless, and undone, it is a trying time
with the soul.

37. And the fame of him went out into every place of the
country round about.

The report of the miracles and doctrine of Christ does
not always lead men to repentance and faith in him. —

38. And he arose out of the synagogue, and entered into
Simon's house. And Simon's wife's mother was taken with a
great fever ; and they besought him for her.

39. And he stood over her, and rebuked the fever ; and it left
her : and immediately she arose and ministered unto them.

It is not said, " she arose, and ministered to them," with-
out a good reason. Healing by Christ is followed by
ministering to him, and to all who serve him.

40. Now when the sun was setting, all they that had any sick
with divers diseases brought them luito him ; and he laid his hands
on every one of them, and healed them.

41. And devils also came out of many, crying out, and saying.
Thou art Christ the Son of God. And he rebuking them su/Fercd
them not to speak : for they knew that he was Christ.

Jesus suffered not the devils to speak, because he knew
that an ill use would be made of the circumstance. The

190 , ST. LUKE, [chap. V.

people might have said, as, indeed, the Pharisees did say,
he is in league with the devils.

42. And when it was day, he departed and went into a desert
])lace : and the people sought him, and came unto him, and stayed
him, that he should not depart h-om them.

43. And he said unto them, I must preach the kingdom of God
to other cities also : for therefore am T sent.

44. And he preached in the synagogues of Galilee.

He was a common good, and must be everywhere: he is
not less so now, but even more. He lias a work to do in
us, and he is ready to enter upon it. He is alike present
everywhere ; and, to our comfort, will never depart from
us, if we are but willing to keep him.

The kingdom of God, is his kingdom of grace here, and
of glory hereafter. One is the entrance into, and begin-
ning of the other. The state is the same ; only it is per-
fected in heaven ; and if we are not in this kingdom before
we die, we are lost to it for ever. Lord, open our eyes, and
take us into thyself, that thou mayest receive us into thine
everlastino; kingdom in heaven.

Chap. V. ver. 1 — 11.


1. And it came to pass, that, as the people jjressed upon him to
hear the word of God, he stood by the lake of Gennesaret,

2. And saw two ships standing by the lake : but the fishermen
were gone out of them, and were washing their nets.

When the people pressed upon Christ to hear the word
of God, he was not offended at their rudeness : indeed they
could not please him more. O that we were as desirous
and eager to hear it ! Remember it is the word of God,
which they would hear. It comes from God, and leads to

VER. 1 — II.] ST. LUKE. 191

God. What else can so much concern us ? And what are
we, if we do not read, and apply it ? We are most certainly
unconverted and unbelieving persons. Every soul is in a
starving condition, which does not hunger after this food :
I do not mean that the word of God of itself is the life of
our souls, but as it sends us to Christ.

3. And he entered into one of the shi23s, which was Simon's,
and prayed him that he would thrust out a little from the laud.
And he sat down, and taught the people out of the ship.

Christ taught them according to their desire, and he is
never wanting to ours. We must, however, keep in mind,
that he can do us no good, without our desires are to him.
He not only taught them, but did more than they expected.
He provided for their future instruction, by sending out his
disciples. And he still provides for the instruction of all,
by calling others to help with him, in the work of man's

4. Now when he hud left speaking, he said unto Simon, Launch
out into the deep, and let down your nets for a draught.

5. And Simon answering said unto him. Master, we have toiled
all the night, and have taken nothing ; nevertheless at thy word I
will let down the net.

By the ready obedience of Peter we may know, that
Christ had already taken some hold of him. So every be-
liever says, Master, at thy word, I will hope against hope,
do anything, and everything.

G. And when they had this done, they inclosed a great multi-
tude of fishes : and tlicir net brake.

The inclosure of so many fishes gives encouragement to
us to proceed at the bidding of Christ. Our work under
him will as certainly prosper as that of the disciples.

7. And they beckoned unto their partners, wiiich were in the
other ship, that they should come and help them. And they
came, and fdled both the slii])s, so that tlicy began to sink.

8. When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus' knees, say-
hig, Depart from me ; for I am a sinful man, O Lord.

192 ST. LUKE. [chap. V.

Peter felt himself unworthy of so great a favour, un-
worthy to stand before Jesus, and dreading his presence.
He was, what he said, a sinful man. This circumstance
did not hinder him from being called. Chi*ist had no
choice but such : and some say, the apostles were not less
sinners than others, but greater. However that is, fear not,
whosoever thou art. Christ has mercy for thee ; and can
change thee into another man, as he did them.

9. For he was astonished, and all tliat were with him, at the
draught of the fishes which they had taken :

10. And so was also James and John, the sons of Zebedee,
which were partners with Simon. And Jesus said unto Simon,
Fear not ; from henceforth thou shalt catch men.

Peter is informed that he should catch more men by the
preaching of the gospel, than he had caught fishes in the
net. How many thousands, or millions Peter has, by his
preaching and writings caught, God only knows. Has the
gospel-net caught us ? Men may be in it by baptism, and
attention to the ordinances of divine worship. But of what
kind are we ? for we are told that the net has in it bad, as
well as good.

11. And when they had brought their ships to land, they for-
sook all, and followed him.

Every one must forsake all, who will follow Christ. He
need not forsake his calling in life ; but he must forsake
everything, in will and affection, so as clearly to give
Christ the preference. Lord, increase our faith.

Chap. V. ver. 12—27.


12. And it came to pass, when he was in a certain city, behold

VER. 12—20.] ST. LUKE. 193

a man full of leprosy ; who seeing Jesus fell on liis face, and be-
sought him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean.

The leprosy was a loathsome distemper in Judaea, and
incurable by human means. It is a lively picture of our
defilement by means of sin, and our loathsomeness in the
sight of God. And the cure is recorded that we might
know where to go for ours. The leper fell on his face
before Jesus: fall on thy knees, O sinner, and beseech
him, as for thy life, to take away thy sin. lie can do it,
and none else is able. And he will do it, whenever he sees
thee humbled at his feet, but not before.

13. And he put forth his hand, and touched him, saying, I
will : be thou clean. And immediately the leprosy departed from

When Christ says, I will, be thou clean, to us, it is our
cleansing. Not our own repentance, or works. The leper
came to him, and fell down before him, as we must ; but
that did not make him clean. The mercy of God, spoken
by Christ, does that for all.

14. And he charged liim to tell no man : but go, and shew thyself
to the priest, and oiler for thy cleansing, according as Moses com-
manded, for a testimony unto them.

Here Christ showed a becoming regard to a legal ap-
pointment ; and that the priests, seeing the miracle, might,
if they pleased, believe in him. God docs not, in any case,
leave himself without witness in the hearts of men.

15. But so much the more went there a fame abroad of him;
and great multitudes came together to hear, and to be healed by
him of their infirmities.

In consequence of the fame of the miracles of Christ at
this time, great multitudes came together to hoar, and to
be healed of their infirmities. It must be repeated, again
and again, that this was the end of Christ's miracles to us,
as well as to them : and that hearing of his miracles, or
even believing them, can signify nothing to us, if it does
not bring every one of us to him for healing. And we

vor.. II. o

194 ST. LUKE. [chap. V.

must be brought with a true knowledge of ourselves, and
our distempers ; for otherwise, we only come to him in

16. And he withdrew him seh" into the wilderness, and prayed.

He prayed for himself and us, that we might learn by
his example to pray for ourselves : let us find time, and
retire for that purpose. This we should do, if we knew
our work, and our need of support, as Christ did.

17. And it came to pass, on a certain day, as he was teacliing,
that there were Pharisees and doctors of the law sitting by, which
were come out of every town of Galilee, and Judaea, and Jerusa-
lem : and the power of the Lord was present to heal them.

This full manifestation of the miraculous power of Christ
to heal diseases, was made under the immediate eye of the
most learned assembly which could be convened. The
means of conviction that Jesus was the Christ were abun-
dant, but alas ! when men are in love with the world, no
evidence will make a lasting impression on their hearts. — •

18. And, behold, men brought in a bed a man which was taken
rt'ith a palsy : and they sought means to bring him in, and to lay
him before him.

19. And when they could not find by what way they might
bring him in because of the multitude, they went upon the house-
lop, and let him down through the tiling with his couch into the
midst before Jesus.

20. And when he saw their faith, he said unto him, Man, thy
sins are forgiven thee.

This additional mercy was probabl}- more than the para-
lytic, or his friends, expected. They seem to have thought
of nothing but a bodily cure. But Jesus knew the man's
faith, and sent him away whole, in soul and body. And
herein he teaches us, 1st, That sin is at the root of our
bodily disorders, and that they should put us upon con-
sidering how the case stands with our souls: 2ndly, We
are taught what is the greatest benefit in Christ's account,

VER. 27— 30.] ST. LUKE. 19'>

and for what we should come to him, namely, remission of

21. And the scribes and the Pharisees began to reason, saying.
Who is this which speaketh blasphemies ? Who can forgive sins,
bnt God alone ?

22. But wlien Jesus perceived their thouglits, he answering
said nnto them, What reason ye in your hearts ?

23. Whether is easier to say, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to
say. Rise up and walk P

24. But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power upon
earth to forgive sins, (he said unto the sick of the palsy,) I sav unto
thee. Arise, and take up thy couch, and go unto thine house.

25. And immediately he rose up before them, and took up that
whereon he lay, and departed to his own house, glorifying God,

26. And they were all amazed, and they glorified God, and were
filled with fear, saying. We have seen strange things to-day.

Let us not only wonder at the miracles of Jesus, but let
us adore the Saviour. Let us not only adore him, but let
us love and serve him all our days ; that we may be fitted
to live with him in heaven. — Edit.


Chap. v. ver. 27—39-


27. And after these things he went forth, and saw a 'publican,
named Levi, sitting at the receipt of custom, and he said unto liim.
Follow me.

28. And he left all, rose up, and followed him.

This was a greater miracle than the cure of the leprosy,
or the palsy. A publican, or tax-gatherer, had a gainful,
and, for the most part, a wicked trade. Think what a
change was wrought in INIatthew, to make him leave all,
and follow Christ. Those wlio know tlieir liearts and want
to have them changed, find it to be a difficult work. But t!ic

G 2

19G ST. LUKE. [chap. V

soul which is possessed of faith looks to Christ, and says,
He who changed Matthew, can change me. So we should
apply every part of the word of God : this is the way to
get life from the scriptures.

29. And Levi made him a great feast in his own house : and
there was a gi'eat company of piibUcans and of others that sat
down with them.

Matthew made this feast for joy of his conversion. Oh !
what did he feel in his heart, when he found the world
turned out of it, and Christ come in its room !

30. But their scribes and Pharisees murmured against his dis-
ciples, saying, Why do ye eat and drink with publicans and sinners ?

They blame both the disciples and the Saviour ; " why
do ye, and your master .'*'" They spake to the disciples, but
their spite was against Christ. He knew this, and there-
fore answered for himself.

31. And Jesus answering, said unto them. They that are whole
need not a phj-sician : but they that are sick.

They who think themselves whole will never go to Christ,
though they have otherwise never so much need of him.
To our comfort, the great physician is with those that are
sick, even unto the end of the world.

32. I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

This is as much as if he had said, I came not so much
to call you, self-righteous Pharisees, because I know you
will not be called. But I came to call sinners, that is, all ;
unless there ever was a man upon earth who was not a
sinner. Think what you are, hear your call, and know
you have a gracious Saviour ready to receive you. But
do not come to him with a deceitful tongue, and say, God
be merciful to me a sinner, when you do not think so in
your hearts.

33. And they said unto him, Why do the disciples of John fast
often, and make ])rayers, and likewise the disciples of the Phari-
sees ; hut thine cat and drink ?

VEIL 27—39.] ST. LUKE. 1!)7

34. And he said unto them. Can ye make the children of the
hridechaniber fast, while the bridegroom is with them ?

3-5. But the days will come, when the bridegroom shall be taken
away from them, and then shall they fast in those days.

Our Lord does not pass any censure upon fasting in
general, but by pleading the exception in favour of his
disciples, he ratlier establishes the rule. — Edit.

36. And he spake also a parable unto them : No man putteth a
piece of a new garment upon an old : if otherwise, then both the
new niaketh a rent, and the piece that was taken out of the new,
agreeth not with the old.

37. And no man putteth new wine into old bottles ; else the
new wine will burst the bottles, and be spilled, and the bottles shall

38. But new wine must be put into new bottles ; and both arc

39. No man also having drunk old wine, straightway desireth
new : for he saith. The old is bettei".

On the subject of fasting as here treated of by Jesus, we
may observe: 1st. That though Christ does not say that
fasting is a necessary duty for all men, at all times; yet
he supposes there is a time for it, which ought not to be
overlooked. 2ndly. That in things not absolutely neces-
sary, however profitable, regard must be had to what the
weaker sort are able to bear. 3rdly. That in the matters
of repentance and turning to God, there is no such allow-
ance. Here in conversion, the call is to all, at all times ;
and the least delay is at the hazard of our souls.

Chap. vi. ver. 1 — 11.

1. And it cauic to pass on the secoiul sabbath allir the fust,

198 ST. LUKE. [chap. VI.

that he went through the corn fields : and his disciples plucked the
cars of corn, and did eat, rubbing them in their hands.

2. And certain of the Pharisees said unto them. Why do ye that
which is not lawful to do on the sabbath days ?

3. And Jesus answering them said. Have ye not read so much
as this, what David did, when himself was an hungred, and they
which were with him :

4. How he went into the house of G(jd, and did take and eat the
shewbread, and gave also to them that were with him, which it is not
lawful to eat, but for the priests alone ?

The account to which Jesus alludes is found in 1 Sara,
xxi. 1 — G. They considered David's character as a pro-
phet unblamable, though he transgressed a ritual obser-
vance ; and as they could not impugn Christ's authority
as a prophet, they ought not to have found fault with him.
— Edit.

5. And he said unto them. That the Son of man is Lord also
of the sabbath.

Christ, as Lord of the sabbath, had more especially
power to dispense with the strict observation of the sabbath.
Every man has, indeed, a power to dispense with the ob-
servation of the day on occasions when there is a necessity :
but then let the necessity be evident.

6. And it came to pass also on another sabbath, that he entered
into the synagogue and taught: and there was a man whose right
hand was withered.

This man presents to us a picture of our condition. Let
us keep this man constantly in mind. Let us bring all
home to ourselves, as we go along in our reading. Not
any one of us need fear to say this to his soul : I am that
helpless man, and must have healing from Christ.

7. And tlie scribes and Pharisees watched him, whether he
would heal on the sabbath day: that they might find an accusation
against him.

8. But he knew their thoughts, and said to die man which had
the withered hand. Rise up, and stand forth in the midst. And he
arose and stood forth.

VER. 1 - 1I.] ST. LUKE. 190

9. Then said .Jesus unto them, I will ask you one thing, Is it
lawful on the sabbath-days to do good, or to do evil ? to save life,
or to destroy it ?

Doing good on the sabbath day to the bodies and souls
of men, is not a ])rofanation, but a suitable employment
of the day. And observe, that when men forbear to do
the good they might, and ought to do, on that day, or in-
deed on any other day, they, in Christ's account, do evil :
for not to save life, is to destroy it. Oh I what a black
scene of omission will one day be opened to us.

10. And looking round about upon them all, he said unto the
man, Stretcli forth thy hand. And he did so : and his hand was
restored whole as the other.

St. Mark says, that Jesus looked round with anger and
deep concern for the hardness of their hearts. Lord, grant
that we may be proof against his piercing eye. At the
command of Christ, the man stretched forth his hand ;
nothing else is wanting to our cure, but doing what we are
bidden, as he did, that is, coming to Christ, helpless, in
faith, and obedience to his command.

11. And they were filled with madness; and communed one
with another what they might do to Jesus.

They were filled with madness, because Christ broke the
sabbath, as they thought. This is common at all times.
If men are not converted by the word, they have something
ill to say of the preacher, and would fain be doing mis-
chief. If Christ could not escape censure, bear thy lot.

In the beginning of this chapter, Christ teaches us that
the sabbath may give way to necessity. Great strictness
in trifles, is not a true keeping of the sabbath-day ; but the
keeping our thoughts close to God and spiritual things,
and making it a day of preparation for the heavenly rest.
If we have our eye upon this point, we shall know, in all
cases, what we ought to do: we shall be careful to turn it
wholly to its jjroper use : and pleatl no excuses for neg-
lecting the proper business of it, or for spending any part

200 ST. LUKE. [chap. VI.

of it idly, or unprofitably. Here is no allowance for letting
our thoughts run upon worldly concerns, — for needlessly
going abroad, or for pastimes, — no, nor for spending the
sabbath merely in a sauntering, dozing, thoughtless way.
Though our bodies are at rest upon that day, our souls
must be fully employed with God. Remember, therefore,
to keep holy the sabbath-day. And if you would find out
your sin, ask yourselves if you ever kept one such sabbath-
day in your whole lives.


Chap. vi. ver. 12—26.

12. And it came to pass in lliose days, tliat lie went out into a
mountain to pray, and continued all niglit in prayer to God.

Before he chose his twelve apostles, we may be assured
he prayed for a blessing on his disciples, and on their
labours, and upon all succeeding labourers. Plis prayer
reaches to the end of the world : you and I may have the
benefit of it, if we please.

13. And when it was day, he called unto him liis disciples : and

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