William L. (William Loring) Worcester.

On holy ground : Bible stories with pictures of Bible lands online

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God? If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not. But if I do,
though ye believe not me, believe the works : that ye may know, and
believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him. Therefore they sought
again to take him : but he escaped out of their hand, and went away again
beyond Jordan into the place where John at first baptized; and there he
abode. And many resorted unto him, and said, John did no miracle : but
all things that John spake of this man were true. And many believed on
him there. — John X. 22~42.


We are again in the country beyond Jordan, listening
to the Lord's words. He was eating bread in the house of a
Pharisee on the Sabbath day. The low table had been
spread, and couches were placed for the people to recline
upon. Some places were thought more honorable than
others, perhaps those next the host or near to the chief
guests. We should expect that the proud Pharisees who
loved the uppermost places at feasts and the chief seats in
the synagogues would choose out these places for them-
selves. We know too what some who were there would think
when the Lord healed a sick man, for it was the Sabbath
day. Then the Lord taught them in parables while they
were with Him about the table.

And it came to pass, as he went into the house of one of the chief
Pharisees to eat bread on the sabbath day, that they watched him. And,
behold, there was a certain man before him which had the dropsy. And
Jesus answering spake unto the lawyers and Pharisees, saying, Is it lawful
to heal on the sabbath day? And they held their peace. And he took him,



and healed him, and let him go; and answered them, saying, Which of you
shall have an ass or an ox fallen into a pit, and will not straightway pull
him out on the sabbath day? And they could not answer him again to
these things.

And he put forth a parable to those which were bidden, when he
marked how they chose out the chief rooms; saying unto them, When
thou art bidden of any man to a wedding, sit not down in the highest room ;
lest a more honourable man than thou be bidden of him; and he that bade
thee and him come and say to thee, Give this man place; and thou begin
with shame to take the lowest room. But when thou art bidden, go and sit

down in the lowest room;
that when he that bade
thee cometh, he may say
unto thee, Friend, go up
higher : then shalt thou
have worship in the pres-
ence of them that sit at
meat with thee. For who-
soever exalteth himself
shall be abased; and he
that humbleth himself
shall be exalted.

Then said he also to
him that bade him, When
thou makest a dinner or
a supper, call not thy
friends, nor thy brethren,
neither thy kinsmen, nor
thy rich neighbours; lest
they also bid thee again,
and a recompence be made
thee. But when thou makest a feast, call the poor, the maimed, the lame,
the blind: and thou shalt be blessed; for they cannot recompense thee:
for thou shalt be recompensed at the resurrection of the just. — Luke
XIV. 1-14.

(Copyright, 1903, by C. H. Gravt

A Jerusalem street : Ecce Homo arch.

The only reward we need ask for doing good is the happi-
ness in doing it, which we may enjoy now and which goes
with ns into heaven.

And now the Lord makes the feast a picture of heaven
and all the good things that He prepares for us there. He
desires to give everybody these blessings, but we are very
slow to make the little sacrifice and effort that are needed
to receive them. Our carelessness about the blessings of
heaven which the Lord has made ready is shown by the
excuses of those who were bidden to the feast and would
not come.



And when one of them that sat at meat with him heard these things,
he said unto him, Blessed is he that shall eat bread in the kingdom of God.
Then said he unto him, A certain man made a great supper, and bade many :
and sent his servant at supper time to say to them that were bidden, Come;
for all things are now
ready. And they all with
one consent began to make
excuse. The first said un-
to him, I have bought a
piece of ground, and I
must needs go and see it :
I pray thee have me ex-
cused. And another said,
I have bought five yoke of
oxen, and I go to prove
them : I pray thee have
me excused. And another
said, I have married a
wife, and therefore I can-
not come. So that servant
came, and shewed his lord
these things. Then the
master of the house being

angry said to his servant, Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of
the city, and bring in hither the poor, and the maimed, and the halt, and
the blind. And the servant said, Lord, it is done as thou hast commanded,
and yet there is room. And the lord said unto the servant, Go out into
the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house
may be filled. For I say unto you, That none of those men which were
bidden shall taste of my supper. — Luke XIV. 15~24.

(Photograph by J. K. bm.vth. i

Lepers begging by the way-side.



The Pharisees murmured because the Lord received the
publicans and sinners and ate with them. The publicans
were the tax-gatherers who were so hated by the Jews
because they collected taxes for the Romans, and they were
often unjust. The "sinners" were those who did not keep
the many rules of the Pharisees. But the Lord loved every
one, and those who were despised and discouraged were
often more ready to receive His help than the proud Phari-
sees who thought that they were already good.



The Lord spoke three parables to teach us how He loves
us even when we have done wrong, and how earnestly He
desires to help us to repent and to come back to Him. The
first is the parable of the lost sheep. You know how the
shepherds in that country lived with their flocks in the fields,
leading them from pasture to pasture, and to the springs
of water. The shepherd went before and the sheep followed.
He led them gently when they were tired, and carried the
little lambs. At night he took them to the fold or stayed
with them in the fields to protect them. As the shepherd
brings back a stray sheep, so does the Lord, the good Shep-
herd, love to bring back any one who has wandered from
Him. He rejoices too and angels rejoice when we bring
back any gentle, innocent feeling that was becoming lost.

Then drew near unto him all the publicans and sinners for to hear
him. And the Pharisees and scribes murmured, saying, This man receiveth

sinners, and eateth with

And he spake this
parable unto them, saying,
What man of you, having
an hundred sheep, if he
lose one of them, doth not
leave the ninety and nine
in the wilderness, and go
after that which is lost,
until he find it? And when
he hath found it, he lay-
eth it on his shoulders, re-
joicing. And when he
cometh home, he calleth to-
gether his friends and neigh-
bours, saying unto them, Rejoice with me; for I have found my sheep
which was lost. I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over
one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons,
which need no repentance. — Luke XV. 1~7.

The second parable was about a silver piece which a
woman lost, perhaps one of the coins which an Eastern
woman wears for ornament on her forehead. She lighted
the wick in her little shallow earthen lamp, and swept the
bare earth floor.

(Copyright, 1903, by William H. Ran, Phila.)

A flock of sheep by Lake Merom

Either what woman having ten pieces of silver, if she lose one piece,
doth not light a candle, and sweep the house, and seek diligently till she



find it ? And when she hath found it, she calieth her friends and her neigh-
bours together, saying, Rejoice with me; for I have found the piece which
I had lost. Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the
angels of God over one sinner that repenteth. — Luke XV. 8~10.

And one other parable, teaching how kind and forgiving
the Lord is, and that the Pharisees should have been glad
to have the sinners come to Him.

And he said, A certain man had two sons: and the younger of them
said to his father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me.
And he divided unto them his living. And not many days after the younger
son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and
there wasted his substance with riotous living. And when he had spent
all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want.
And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent
him into his fields to feed swine. And he would fain have filled his belly
with the husks * that the swine did eat : and no man gave unto him. And
when he came to himself, he said,
How many hired servants of my
father's have bread enough and to
spare, and I perish with hunger !
I will arise and go to my father,
and will say unto him, Father, I
have sinned against heaven, and
before thee, and am no more
worthy to be called thy son :
make me as one of thy hired
servants. And he arose, a n d
came to his father. But when
he was yet a great way off, his
father saw him, and had com-
passion, and ran, and fell on his
neck, and kissed him. And the
son said unto him, Father, I have
sinned against heaven, and in thy
sight, and am no more worthy to
be called thy son. But the father
said to his servants, Bring forth
the best robe, and put it on him ;
and put a ring on his hand, and
shoes on his feet: and bring

hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry: for
this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.

Bethlehem women with coin ornaments.

* The large brown pods of the carob tree, a kind of locust. The pods
were eaten by the poor people, and we sometimes see them for sale on our
fruit stands under the name " St. John's bread."


And they began to be merry. Now his elder son was in the field: and
as he came and drew nigh to the house, he heard musick and dancing.
And he called one of the servants, and asked what these things meant.
And he said unto him, Thy brother is come ; and thy father hath killed
the fatted calf, because he hath received him safe and sound. And he
was angry, and would not go in : therefore came his father out, and
intreated him. And he answering said to his father, Lo, these many


(Photograph by Putnam Cady.)


years do I serve thee, neither transgressed I at any time thy command-
ment : and yet thou never gavest me a kid, that I might make merry with
my friends : but as soon as this thy son was come, which hath devoured
thy living with harlots, thou hast killed for him the fatted calf. And he
said unto him, Son, thou art ever with me, and all that I have is thine. It
was meet that we should make merry, and be glad : for this thy brother was
dead, and is alive again; and was lost, and is found. — Luke XV. 11-32.


The Lord spoke a parable about a steward, a man who
had care of a rich man's property, perhaps renting his farms
and selling his crops. The steward wonld have in his keep-
ing the statements signed by the different people who owed
the rich man, showing how much they owed him. The
writing was often done on a waxed surface with a pointed
style, and words could be erased by smoothing out the wax
with the other end of the style. One owed a hundred meas-
ures of oil ; the steward told him to write fifty : another
owed a hundred measures of wheat ; he should write eighty.
Both debts were for large amounts. It seems that the



steward acted dishonestly so that the debtors would be his
friends ; and the master commended him for his shrewd-
ness. Our Lord does not say that he did right. If he acted
dishonestly he did very wrong. But the lesson is that if this
worldly man with such wisdom as he had, used the property
in his hands so that he would have friends, ought we not
honestly and with real wisdom, to use the good things trusted
to us in this world, so that they will do our souls good, and
so that angels will be our friends and receive us to homes
in heaven!

And he said also unto his disciples, There was a certain rich man, which
had a steward; and the same was accused unto him that he had wasted
his goods. And he called him, and said unto him, How is it that I hear
this of thee ? give an account of thy stewardship ; for thou mayest be no
longer steward. Then the steward said within himself, What shall I do?
for my lord taketh away from me the stewardship : I cannot dig ; to beg
I am ashamed. I am resolved what to do, that, when I am put out of the
stewardship, they may re-
ceive me into their houses.
So he called every one of
his lord's debtors unto him, !
and said unto the first,
How much owest thou un-
to my lord? And he said,
An hundred measures of
oil. And he said unto him,
Take thy bill, and sit down
quickly, and write fifty.
Then said he to another,
And how m u c h owest
thou? And he said, An
hundred measures of
wheat. And he said unto
him, Take thy bill, and
write fourscore. And the
lord commended the un-
just steward, because he
had done wisely : for the
children of this world are in their generation wiser than the children
of light. And I say unto you, Make to yourselves friends of the mam-
mon of unrighteousness; that, when ye fail,* they may receive you into

(Copyright, 1903, by William II. Kau, Phila.)
The grain market, Haifa.

* The Revised Version reads, " by means of the mammon of unright-
eousness; that, when it shall fail." "Mammon" means "wealth." Good
things of this world are called " the mammon of unrighteousness" because
they can so easily be used selfishly and lead us away from the Lord.




everlasting habitations. He that is faithful in that which is least is
faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also
in much. If therefore ye have not been faithful in the unrighteous
mammon, who will commit to your trust the true riches? And if ye
have not been faithful in that which is another man's, who shall give
you that which is your own ? No servant can serve two masters : for
either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the
one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. — Luke
XVI. 1-13.


This parable is about a rich man in his beautiful house,
wearing soft white robes, and robes dyed with the costly-
purple which the people of Tyre knew how to make from
a little shell-fish. There was feasting in the house every

Court of a Syrian house.

day. But no one pitied the poor beggar asking for crumbs
at the gate, except the dogs that ran about the streets with-
out a home.

The parable tells us that when the rich man and beggar
died, the beggar came into heaven, but the rich man was in
torments. It does not mean that all who are poor in this
world's goods will go to heaven, and that those who are
rich here will not. All will go to heaven who make good
use of what they have whether it is much or little. ''Blessed


are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven."
Those who are humble, who know how weak they are, who
trust in the Lord and do good, are the poor who come into
heaven. Those who think that they are strong and good,
and that they know best without learning from the Lord,
are the rich who cannot enter heaven. Our happiness or
unhappiness in the other world is determined by our life
here ; our essential character is fixed and will not afterwards
be changed from good to bad or from bad to good.

There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine
linen, and fared sumptuously every day: and there was a certain beggar
named Lazarus, Avhich was laid at his gate, full of sores, and desiring to
be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table : moreover the
dogs came and licked his sores. And it came to pass, that the beggar died,
and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom : the rich man also
died, and was buried; and in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments,
and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. And he cried and
said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may
dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented
in this flame. But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime
receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things : but now he
is comforted, and thou art tormented. And beside all this, between us and
you there is a great gulf fixed : so that they which would pass from hence
to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence.
Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him
to my father's house : for I have five brethren ; that he may testify unto
them, lest they also come into this place of torment. Abraham saith unto
him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them. And he said,
Nay, father Abraham : but if one went unto them from the dead, they
will repent. And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the
prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead. —
Luke XVI. 19-31.


Remember the little village on the sunny slope of the
Mount of Olives. The road from Jerusalem to Jericho led
over the hill, and about two miles from the city passed near
the little town with its orchards. You remember how the
Lord once came to Bethany to the house of Mary and Mar-
tha. They both loved the Lord and He loved them. And
they had a brother Lazarus who was dear to the Lord. By
and by we shall learn of the Lord's coming again to Bethany,



and how they made Him a supper, and Martha served, and
Lazarus reclined at the table, and Mary anointed the Lord's
head and feet with costly ointment.

But now Lazarus was sick. In their distress the sisters
sent to Jesus. The messengers went down the road to Jeri-
cho, and across the Jordan to where the Lord was teaching
in that eastern country, and told Him, "Lord, he whom
thou lovest is sick." Still the Lord did not come, and Laz-
arus died. The burial was in a cave, and it is interesting
to learn about it, for it was in such a sepulchre by and by

Nearing Bethany, on the road from Jericho.

that the body of the Lord was laid. A sort of porch-way was
cut in the rocky hill-side. From this a low door led to a
chamber where there was a rest for the body, or niches in
the walls where a number of bodies could be laid. The door
of the chamber was closed by a wheel-shaped stone rolled
across the opening. The body of Lazarus was carried to
such a cave by weeping friends, perhaps with hired mourn-
ers ; and many friends from Jerusalem came to comfort the
sisters in their sadness.

Four more days had passed, when word was brought to
Martha that the Lord had come. He knew that Lazarus had
died, but He did not call it death ; He called it sleep. The
Lord and the disciples with Him, had crossed the broad
meadows of the Jordan, passed Jericho, and climbed the


steep road into the hills. As they drew near to Bethany,
Martha came to meet the Lord. Afterwards Mary came.
As we read the story we shall learn what the Lord said, and
what He did.

Now a certain man was sick, named Lazarus, of Bethany, the town
of Mary and her sister Martha. (It was that Mary which anointed the
Lord with ointment, and wiped his feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus
was sick.) Therefore his sisters sent unto him, saying, Lord, behold, he
whom thou lovest is sick. When Jesus heard that, he said, This sickness is
not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be
glorified thereby. Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus.
When he had heard therefore that he was sick, he abode two days still in
the same place where he was. Then after that saith he to his disciples, Let
us go into Judaea again. His disciples say unto him, Master, the Jews
of late sought to stone thee; and goest thou thither again? Jesus answered,
Are there not twelve hours in the day? If any man walk in the day, he
stumbleth not, because he seeth the light of this world. But if a man walk
in the night, he stumbleth, because there is no light in him. These things
said he : and after that he saith unto them, Our friend Lazarus sleepeth ;
but I go, that I may awake him out of sleep. Then said his disciples,
Lord, if he sleep, he shall do well. Howbeit Jesus spake of his death : but
they thought that he had spoken of taking of rest in sleep. Then said
Jesus unto them plainly, Lazarus is dead. And I am glad for your sakes
that I was not there, to the intent ye may believe; nevertheless let us go
unto him. Then said Thomas, which
is called Didymus, unto his fellow-
disciples, Let us also go, that we
may die with him.

Then when Jesus came, he
found that he had lain in the
grave four days already. Now
Bethany was nigh unto Jerusalem,
about fifteen furlongs off: and many
of the Jews came to Martha and
Mary, to comfort them concerning
their brother. Then Martha, as
soon as she heard that Jesus was

coming, went and met him: but (Photugraph by s. k. Williams.)
Mary sat still in the house. Then A rock-cut tomb near Jerusalem,

said Martha unto Jesus, Lord, if

thou hadst been here, my brother had not died. But I know, that even
now, whatsoever thou wilt ask of God, God will give it thee. Jesus saith
unto her, Thy brother shall rise again. Martha saith unto him, I know
that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day. Jesus said
unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me,
1 hough he were dead, yet shall he live: and whosoever liveth and be-
lieveth in me shall never die. Believest thou this? She saith unto him,


Yea, Lord: I believe that thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which
should come into the world. And when she had so said, she went her
way, and called Mary her sister secretly, saying, The Master is come,
and calleth for thee. As soon as she heard that, she arose quickly, and
came unto him. Now Jesus was not yet come into the town, but was in
that place where Martha met him. The Jews then which were with her
in the house, and comforted her, when they saw Mary, that she rose up
hastily and went out, followed her, saying, She goeth unto the grave to
weep there. Then when Mary was come where Jesus was, and saw him, she
fell down at his feet, saying unto him, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my
brother had not died. When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and the
Jews also weeping which came with her, he groaned in the spirit, and was
troubled, and said, Where have ye laid him? They said unto him, Lord,
come and see. Jesus wept. Then said the Jews, Behold how he loved him !
And some of them said, Could not this man, which opened the eyes of the
blind, have caused that even this man should not have died? Jesus there-
fore again groaning in himself cometh to the grave. It was a cave, and a
stone lay upon it. Jesus said, Take ye away the stone. Martha, the sister
of him that was dead, saith unto him, Lord, by this time he stinketh : for
he hath been dead four days. Jesus saith unto her, Said I not unto thee,
that, if thou wouldest believe, thou shouldest see the glory of God"? Then
they took away the stone from the place where the dead was laid. And
Jesus lifted up his eyes, and said, Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard
me. And I knew that thou hearest me always : but because of the people
which stand by I said it, that they may believe that thou hast sent me. And
when he thus had spoken, he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth.
And he that was dead came forth, bound hand and foot with graveclothes :
and his face was bound about with a napkin. Jesus saith unto them,
Loose him, and let him go.

Then many of the Jews which came to Mary, and had seen the things
which Jesus did, believed on him. But some of them went their ways to
the Pharisees, and told them what things Jesus had done. — John XI. 1~46.



Aftek the Lord raised Lazarus from the dead the chief
priests and Pharisees plotted once more against Him. Be-
fore when they wonld have stoned Him, He went away be-
yond Jordan. Now he went with His disciples to a city
called Ephraim. It was perhaps a little town some fifteen

Online LibraryWilliam L. (William Loring) WorcesterOn holy ground : Bible stories with pictures of Bible lands → online text (page 37 of 42)