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40 self.” On these two commandments hang all the law and the

prophets. 41 While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked 42 them, saying : What think ye of Christ ? whose son is he? 43 They say unto him : The son of David. He saith unto them : 4. How then doth David in spirit call him Lord ? saying : “The

Lord said unto my Lord : Sit thou on my right hand, till I 45 make thine enemies thy footstool.” If David then call him 46 Lord, how is he his son ? And no man was able to answer

- As thyself. As means not equal al king, and to rebut the objection, in degree, but similar in kind. doubtless used by the Pharisees with Matt. vii. 12. See note on chap. effect among the common people, xix. 19.

that one, who appeared like an ordi40. Hang all the law, fc. Mark nary individual, as Jesus did, could adds, " There is none other com not be the great Deliverer. mandment greater than these." 42. Of Christ. In the original, These commands are so familiar to of the Christ, i. e. of the ancestry us, that we cannot understand, how and dignity of the Messiah.— Whoše striking they must have appeared to son is he? Rather, whose son is the Jews, who had confounded the he to be? He did not speak of important and the unimportant, and himself, as our version implies, but were entangled in the nets of soph- of the Messiah they expected. istry, woven by their teachers. The The son of David. This was the law and the prophets are founded current opinion, drawn from their on these two grand commandments. Scriptures. Rom. xiii. 9. Love to God is the 43, 44. In spirit. Under a divine basis of piety; love to man, that of impulse. Ps. cx. 1. The Lord said morality. Love is the golden chain unto my Lord. Jehovah said unto that binds man to man, and all to my Lord or Master.

- On my right God. Some have conjectured, that hand. It was customary for peran allusion is made here to writing sons, next in dignity to the king, to the laws and hanging them up in be seated on his right hand. — Make a public place, to be read by the thine enemies thy footstool. A figure, people.

derived from the practice of the 41 - 46. Parallel to Mark xii. 35 victor, putting his foot upon the - 37; Luke xx. 41–44.

neck of the vanquished, as a mark 41. Having silenced the Pharisees, of subjection. Herodians, Sadducees, and Scribes, 45. If David address him with so with his wonderful answers, he takes honorable a title, how is that conan opportunity, when the Pharisees sistent with his being his son ? were together, to put their wisdom The only key of explanation lay in to the proof, as they had his. His the fact, that the Christ was to posquestion, however, was not designed sess a spiritual superiority, that he chiefly to confound his opponents, was to be, not a mere earthly prince, for that motive was unworthy of like David, but a spiritual deliverer, him, but to lead them to more ele- the Saviour of the world. Acts ii. vated views of the Messiah, as be- 36. ing of higher dignity than a tempor

46. No man was able, fc. Be

him a word ; neither durst any man, from that day forth, ask him any more questions.

CHAPTER XXIII.

Jesus' Condemnation of the Scribes and Pharisees. THEN spake Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples, saying : The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat. 2 All, therefore, whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe 3 and do ; but do not ye after their works ; for they say, and do

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cause they looked upon the Messiah lowing chapter, he warns the mul-. as a temporal ruler, and, therefore, titude, in the most pointed manner, not differing from David in the kind, to beware of the influence of their though he might in the degree, of hypocritical teachers. His hour his power and dignity. The ques- is rapidly approaching, and he hesition could not be answered, there- tates not to expose the Scribes and fore, because they took a low view Pharisees, in all their moral deforof the character and office of their mity, before his hearers. Messiah. Jesus would elevate their 2. The scribes and the Pharisees. minds to nobler conceptions. He See note on chap. iii. 7. — Sit in had so effectually answered his op- Moses' seat. In reference to the ponents by his divine wisdom, and sitting posture, in which Jewish confounded them

their own

doctors were accustomed to explain grounds, that they were too much the law. They were the receivawed, to venture again, by asking ed expounders of the Mosaic relihim questions, to expose their own gion. weakness and folly. He had, how 3. All, therefore, whatsoever, fc. ever, only silenced, not convinced It is likely that they interpreted them. Foiled in the arts of discus- much of the law correctly. The sion, they resort to different and expression is a general one, subject darker, but more successful means, to exceptions, and denoting that to arrest his influence. As we pro- they were to be hearkened to, so ceed farther, in this wonderful his- far as they taught in harmony with tory, how much is there to admire, the Scriptures. — After their works. how much to love, how much to But their example was as carefully imitate in our blessed Lord! It to be shunned. A comparison is should ever be the effect of studying probably intended here, that they his life, to inspire us with a more should do rather as the Pharisees devoted trust and obedience to him. said, than as they did, without enFor in him is life, and light, and joining that all their instructions everlasting happiness.

should be received with implicit

confidence. Warburton points out CHAP. XXIII.

the magnanimity of our Saviour, in 1-14. See Mark xii. 38 - 40. reconciling the people to their teachLuke xx. 45 – 47.

ers, and bidding them hearken to 1. During the last days of Jesus' their instructions, though they were life, he is recorded as delivering not to copy their example.

An many discourses, both to his disci- impostor, or a fanatic, would not ples and to the people. In the fol- have done this.

4 not. For they bind heavy burdens, and grievous to be borne,

and lay them on men's shoulders ; but they themselves will not 5 move them with one of their fingers. But all their works they

do for to be seen of men. They make broad their phylacteries, 6 and enlarge the borders of their garments ; and love the

uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the syna

166 The

4. Bind heavy burdens. Acts xv. vi. 8. Great holiness was attached 10. They did so by multiplying to them, and they were regarded as traditions and ceremonies, and in- amulets or charms, to keep off evil sisting on them, as of equal impor- spirits. The following is an extract tance with moral precepts. An al- from a Jewish Targum :lusion is here made to loading congregation of Israel hath said, I beasts of burden with an excessive am elect above all people, because weight. The Scribes and Phari- I bind my phylacteries on my left sees would not even lighten or steady hand and on my head, and the their burdens with the tip of one scroll is fixed to the right side of of their fingers, a proverbial phrase. my gate, the third part of which They were severe towards others, looks to my bed-chamber, that debut indulgent towards themselves. mons may not be permitted to inHaving urged the claims of obedi- jure me. The word phylacteries ence with great severity, they did is derived from a Greek verb, to not supply those mild and gracious keep, in reference either to keeping motives, that would render obedi- the law by the use of them, or to ence pleasant. Has not this pic- their keeping or protecting a person, ture been repeated from age to age, by their supposed magic power. and appeared even in our own day? Enlarge the borders of their garHas not the tone of theology been ments. These were the fringes or harsh, dogmatical, and denunciato- tufts, worn on their mantles, to disry, rather than mild and winning? tinguish them from other nations, Have not burdens been put upon and remind them of God's laws. human nature heavier than it can Numb. xv. 38, 39. Their ostentabear?

tion was manifested in making these 5. They do for to be seen of men. phylacteries and fringes broad and To the charge of oppression, he conspicuous, as badges of their adds that of ostentation and ambi- greater sanctity, Mark xii. 38, Luke tion. So far as they did conform to xx. 46, and thus making their gartheir precepts and ceremonies, they ments long. acted from a vitiated motive. He 6. Uppermost rooms

at feasts. goes on to particularize. · Make More correctly speaking, the highbroad their phylacteries. These were est places at table. The Jewish scrolls of parchment, worn on the table extended around three sides forehead and the left arm. They of an oblong square, with one end were inscribed with passages of the open, on the outside of which, were law, usually these : Ex. xiii. 1 - 10, couches ranged for the guests to 11 - 16 ; Deut. vi. 4-9, xi. 13 – 21. recline upon, and within which, The same were inscribed on their servants could enter to wait upon door-posts. The custom of wearing them. The most honorable place, them, arose from a too literal inter or the uppermost room, was at the pretation of Ex. xiii. 9, 16; Deut. end, which connected the sides of

gogues, and greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, 7 Rabbi, Rabbi. But be not ye called Rabbi ; for one is your 8 Master, eten Christ, and all ye are brethren. And call no man 9 your father upon the earth ; for one is your Father, which is in heaven. Neither be ye called masters; for one is your Vas- 10 ter, eren Christ. But he that is greatest among you shall be 11

the wuare together. Chief seats Peter had none of that superiority in the synagogues. These were among the Apostles, on which the near the pulpit, but faced the peo- claims of the Catholic church are ple, while the back was turned to founded. wards the speaker.

9. A continuation of the same 7. Greetings in the markets. Or, sentiment. They were not implicitsalutations in the most frequented ly to submit to any teacher, as a places. They loved to be address- child to a parent. They were neied in a formal manner, with great ther to assume nor admit such an signs of respect, in the sight of the absolute domination. — Upon the world. - Rabbi, Rabbi, i. e. doctor, earth is contrasted with is in heaven. master, teacher. This obnoxious You are not to look among the imand haughty title was introduced perfections of earth, but in the into the Jewish schools under a heights of heaven, for one, upon threefold form, as Rab, the lowest whom you may fully rely. Of degree of honor; Rabbi, of higher course, there is no prohibition here dignity ; and Rabboni, the greatest of children paying respect to their of all. The ambitious Scribes and parents. — It is not a little remarkaPharisees coveted these idle appella- ble, that the head of the dominant tions.

church in Christendom, in his some8. But be not ye called Rabbi. times greater than imperial authorJesus would not have his disciples, ity, has, in all ages, been called by in the exercise of their high office, that very title, which is here forbidas teachers of his religion, puffed den, Papa, Pope, Father. So little up with this foolish love of distinc- has the doctrine of Christ been adtion, so insidious and so fatal to hered to, by the great mass of his a meck and humble temper of mind. disciples ! James iii. 1. -- For one is your mas 10. Masters. Leaders, guides. ter. The reason of his prohibition This was a third title of honor aswas, that they were upon an equali- sumed by the Scribes and Pharity, Christ being their common Mas- sees, as we learn from the Rabbiniter. Christ. This word has been cal writers. Because their epithets left out of the text by Griesbach, as encouraged pride and spiritual tyrdestitute of suflicient authority. anny, on one side, and subservienAnd all we are brethren. This clause cy and superstition, on the other, in several manuscripts is placed at they were to be wholly discontinthe end of the next verse', where, ued among the equal children of a according to the sense, it more prop common Father, and the equal diserly belongs; as the mention of the ciples of a common Master. In the fraternal relation would then be im- bright light of these verses, what mediately connected with that of the becomes of the doctrines of infallitilial, --It is clear beyond a doubt, bility and divine right vested in any from this and other passages, that man, or body of men? what be

sun.

12 your servant. And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be

abased ; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted. 13 But woe unto you scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites ! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men ; for

ye

neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go 14 in. Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites ! for ye

devour widows' houses, and for a pretence make long prayer ; 15 therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation. Woe unto

you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites ! for ye compass sea

and land to make one proselyte ; and when he is made, ye comes of ecclesiastical usurpations iii. 7.— Shut up the kingdom of and exclusiveness? They disap- heaven against men. Or, in their pear like mists before the morning faces as it were. The figure is ta

ken from shutting and locking a 11, 12. He now points out the door against those who were entertrue and royal road to greatness, ing it. In accordance with this, that of usefulness and humility. they are described in Luke xi. 52, See note on Matt. xviii. 4. — Abased as having. “ taken away the key."

- humble. Words from the same They had done so by their examGreek verb, which would be more ple, instructions, and authority, and properly translated alike. Jesus thrown all possible obstacles in the preaches no doctrine more often, path of the Gospel. — Neither suffer ihan this of Humility, and none is ye them, fc. They were not conmore necessary to our being his tent with remaining outside themreal disciples, and elitering into the selves, but they endeavored to predeep and pure life of his religion. vent all others from going in. This Covet humility ; beautiful is " the churlish conduct reminds us of the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, fable of the dog in the manger. which is in the sight of God of great 14. Devour widows' houses. Or, price.”

estates. They were, furthermore, 13. This and the next verse are guilty of avarice, and, under the transposed by Griesbach, and many mask of great sanctity, they hesitatother trustworthy scholars. But ed not to defraud those, who were woe unto you. Rather, alas for you. peculiarly helpless and exposed, and See note on Matt. xi. 21. It is con who were taken in by their fairgenial to our ideas of Jesus' charac- seeming goodness. — Long prayer. ter, to believe, that an unutterable Nine hours were daily spent by pity mingled with his most search some in devotion.

See note ing rebukes. He wounded not to Matt. vi. 7. For such mingled hyinflict pain, but to heal. To use pocrisy, covetousness, and oppresthe language of Wakefield : “ Woe sion, they would be doomed to a unto you is an exclamation better

severe punishment. suited to the enthusiasts of modern 15. Compass sea and land. A times, who denounce damnation proverbial phrase, signifying that against all but their own sects, than they left no effort untried, or, as we to the benevolent Saviour of man say, no stone unturned, to gain kind." Matt. xxiv. 19. Scribes proselytes to Judaism, or, more and Pharisees. See note on Matt. likely, to Pharisaism, doing it not

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