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which tbe Pharisees profess’d to believe. And therefore St. Paul, when he was making his Defence before the High-Priest
, and Claudius Lysias the Chief Captain of the Roman Garrison, took Advantage of this; and perceiving that the one Part of bis Accusers were Sadducees, and the other Pharisees; be cried out, in the Council, Mer and Brethren, I am a Pharisee, the Son of a Pharisee: of the Hope and Resurrection of the Dead, I am calld in Question. And when he had so faid, there arose a Diffention between the Pharisees and the Sadduçees; and the Multitude was divided; and there arose a great Cry; and the Scribes that were of the Pharisees Part, arose and strove.
This Expedient might be of Service to the Apostle, just at that Season. But otherwise, he had little Reason to expect that they, who had united in crucifying the LORD of Life, would let their Differences prevail so far, as to be favourable to him who was employ'd in carrying on that Building, of which Jesus CHRIST hmself was the Chief Corner Stone,
0! The Pharijees were much greater Hy'pocrites than any of the rest; and there
fore we often find them so stylid, by our C:
LORD himself. They pretended to much - Fasting and Prayer; but took care to do it in such a Manner, as to make
Bo. dy take notice of it: their whole Design I thereby being only the more effectually to
deceive and take Advantage of Mankind: They made long prayers for a pretence.
Matt. They set up for being more strict Ob- xxiii. 14. servers of the Law than the rest of the Jews; but their Strictness, in Reality, weng no further than Trifles, and mere indiffe, rent Things, while Matters of Moment and Importance to eternal Salvation, were uçterly neglected by them. They paid tythe --- 23. of mint, and anise, and cummin, every little Herb chat grew in their. Garden; but omitted the weightier Matters of the Law, Judgment and Mercy and Faith.
And, because the Law orders that the Children of Israel should make a particular Kind of fringe upon the borders of their Numb. garments, that when they look’d upon it, they XV. 38. might remember the commandments of the LORD, and do them; Therefore the Pha
rifees, who did all their works to be seen of Matt. men, made broad their Phylateries, and ena xxii. 5. larged the borders of their garments; to pro
cure them, what they lov'd better than the Commandments of the LORD, Reverence and Respect among the ignorant Multitude; to have the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues, and greetings in the markets, and to be faluted with bonourable titles... ?
The Sadducees, though they did not believe a future Life, yet profess’d themselves oblig'd to obferve the Law, because of the temporal Rewards or Penalties which were to attend them according as they behaved themselves; and appear, in the main, to have been a. somewhat better Sort of Men than the Pharisees; because we seldom find our LORD charging them with Hypocrify, and those many other foul Crimes with which he upbraids the Pharisees. The Baptifindeed joins them with the Pbarisees
, Matt. iii. when he says of both together, O generation 7.,.: 73 of vipers! And our Lord bids his Disciples ib. xvi. 6. Beware of the leaven (the Doctrine) of the
Pbarisees, and of the Saddücees.
But, as to their Error, in not believing a Resurrection ; an Error of a pernicious Nature, as ir tends to deprive Mankind of the Blessings of a Social Life bere, and curs off the Wretches who are so unfortunate as to be milled by it, from eternal Happiness, hereafter; Our blessed- LORD took Care, effectually, to confute and put to filence these stupid Maintainers of it, ata Time when they attempted to sneer and ridicule Him by, whac they took to be an unanswerable Question: Whose wife of the
Mat.xxii. seven men that bad married þer, a woman 23. hould be at the resurrection?
This gross sensual Supposition of theirs, in making the Case improbable, the better
to palliate their own Incredulity, he ex: plodes by saying, re do err, not knowing the fcriptures, nor the power of God. For, the resurrection, they neither marry'nor are given in marriage; but are, as the angels of God in heaven. But, as' touching the refur
rection of the dead, bave ye not read that & which was spoken unto you by God, saying, I
am the God of Abraham, and the God of 6. Ifaac, and the God of Jacob ? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living. And
when the multitude beard this, they were
of believers were added to the LORD; Aets v. then it is said, The High-Priest rose up, and
all they that were with him (wbich is the feet of the Sadducees) and were filled with indignation and laid their hands on the Apostles, and put them in the common prison. Now the Reason of the Sadducees being
so active against the Apostles was plainly Acts iv.z. this, Because they preach'd thro'. ) Esus, the
resurrection from the dead.
The Herodians were a Sect, who dif
fered from the Rest of the Jews, by be..il .fw=lieving that Herod was the Mesab:
Grounding their Opinion upon that cele
brated Prophesy of Jacob; The sceptre shall xlix. 10.