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CCII. 1.

CCII. 1.

The parable of the

CHAP. XXIV.

evil and oppressive servant. A.M.4083. whom his lord hath made ruler over 49 And shall begin to smite his fel- A.M.4033. A. D, 29. An. Olymp. his houshold, to give them meat in low-servants, and to eat and drink An. Olymp. due season?

with the drunken; 46 · Blessed is that servant, whom his lord 50 The lord of that servant shall come in a when he cometh, shall find so doing.

day when he looketh not for him, and in an 47 Verily I say unto you, That "he shall make hour that he is not aware of, him ruler over all his goods.

51 And shall cut him asunder, and appoint 48 But, and if that evil servant shall say in his him his portion with the hypocrites : heart, My lord delayeth his coming ;

shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

d there

* Rev, 16. 15.bch. 25. 21, 23. Luke 22. 29.

• Or, cut him off.ch. 8. 12. & 25. 30.

affairs to him; and of which management, he is to give an ex- nister. 1. A sudden death, and the weight of God's judgact account on his master's return.

ments falling upon him, without a moment to avert it: this Here is an abstract of the duties of a minister of Christ. answers to his infidelity and forgetfulness. He shall come in'a 1. He is appointed not by himself, but by the vocation and day in which he looketh not for him. 2. A separation from the mission of his master. 2. He must look on himself not as the communion of saints, and from all the gifts which he has abmaster of the family, but as the servant. 3. He must be scru- used : this answers to the abuse of his authority in the church pulously faithful and exact, in fulfilling the commands of his of Christ. 3. He shall bave tears and eternal pains in commaster. 4. His fidelity must be ever accompanied by wisdom pany with all such hypocrites as himself: and this answers to and prudence. 5. He must give the domestics—the sacred his voluptuous life, pampering the flesh at the expence of the family, their food; and this food must be such as to afford soul. them true nourishment. And 6. This must be done in its season. Verse 51. Cut him asunder] This refers to an ancient mode There are certain portions of the bread of life, which lose of punishment used in several countries. Isaiah is reported their effect by being administered out of proper season, or to

to have been sawed ASUNDER. That it was an ancient mode improper persons.

of punishment is evident from what Herodotus says: that SaVerse 46. Blessed is that servunt] His blessedness consists bacus, king of Ethiopia, had a vision, in which he was comin his master's approbation.

manded uscous de tapesuv, to cut in two, all the Egyptian priests, Verse 47. He shall make him ruler over all his goods.] 0 lib. ii. And in lib. vii. where Xerxes ordered one of the sons heavenly privilege of a faithful minister of Christ! He shall of Pythius pecor darajasiv, to be cut in two, and one half placed receive from God a power to dispense all the blessings of the on each side of the way, that his army might pass through New Covenant; and his word shall ever be accompanied with between them. See Raphelius also in his notes from Herothe demonstration of the Holy Ghost to the hearts of all that dotus and Polybius. This kind of punishment was used among bear it. Much of a preacher's usefulness may be lost by his the Persians : see Dan. ii. 5. iii. 29. Story of Susannah, ver. unfaithfulness.

55, 59. See also 2 Sam. xii. 31. and 1 Chron. xx. 3. It may Verse 48. But, and if that evil servant] Here are three cha- || also have reference to that mode of punishment, in which the racters of a bad minister. 1. He has little or no faith in the different members were chopped off seriatim, first the feet, speedy coming of Christ, either to punish for wickedness, or to then the hands, next the legs, then the arms, and lastly the pardon and sanctify those who believe. It may be, he does head. This mode of punishment is still in use among the not outwardly profess this, but he says it in his heart, and God | Chinese. searches his heart, and knows that he professes to teach what he does not believe. 2. He governs with an absolute domi- The Reader has no doubt observed in the preceding chapter, nion, oppressing his colleagues, and doing violence to the fol- a series of the most striking and solemn predictions, fulfilled lowers of Christ. And shall begin to smite, &c. 3. He leads in the most literal, awful, and dreadful manner. Christ has an irregular life-does not love the company of the children foretold the ruin of the Jewish people, and the destruction of of God, but euts and drunks with the drunkards, preferring the their polity; and in such a circumstantial manner, as none tables of the great and the rich, whose god is their belly, and else could do, but He, under whose eye are all events, and thus feeds himself without fear. Great God ! save thine in-.in whose hands are the government and direction of all things. heritance from being ravaged by such wolves!

Indeed he rather declared what he would do, than predicted Verse 50. The lord of thut servant] Here are three punish- what should come to pass. And the fulfilment has been as cirments which answer to the three characteristics of the bad mi- || cumstantial as the prediction. Does it not appear that the

GS

Reflections on the literal sulfilment

Sr. MATTHEW.

of the preceding prophecies

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predicted point was so literally referred to by the occurring the solemn record, already alluded to, is strictly and literally fact, by which it was to have its accomplishment, as to leave true! Who that has ever consulted the Roman historians no room to doubt the truth of the prediction, or the certainty of the reigns of Vespasian and Titus; the history of Josephus, of the event by which it was fulfilled ? Thus the wisdom of and the 24th chapter of St. Matthew's gospel, and who knows God, as also his justice and providence, have had a plenary any thing of the present state of the Jews over the face of inanifestation.

the earth, or even of those who sojourn in England, can doubt But this wisdom appears farther, in preserving such a re- for a moment the truth of this Gospel, or the infinite and all cord of the prediction, and such evidence of its accomplish- comprehensive knowledge of Him who is its author! Here ment, as cannot possibly be doubted. The New Testament, then is one portion of Divine Revelation that is incontrovergiven by the inspiration of God, and handed down uncor- tibly and absolutely proved to be the truth of God. Reader! rupted from father to son, by both friends and enemies, per- | if he, who while he predicted the ruin of this disobedient fect in its credibility and truth, inexpugnable in its evidences, and refractory people, wept over their city and its inhabitand astonishingly circumstantial in details of future occur- ants, has so minutely fulfilled the threatenings of his justice rences, which the wisdom of God alone could foreknow—that on the unbelieving and disobedient, will he not as circumstanNew Testament is the record of these predictions. The his- tially fulfil the promises of his grace to all them that believe? tory of the Romans, written by so many hands; the history The existence of his revelation, the continuance of a Chrisof the Jews, written by one of themselves ; triumphal arches, tian church upon earth, the certainty that there is one indivicoins, medals, and public monuments of different kinds, are dual saved from his sins by the grace of the Gospel, and the evidence by which the fulfilment of the record is demon-walking worthy of his vocation, are continued proofs and strated. Add to this the preservation of the Jewish people ; evidences that he is still the same; that he will fulfil every jot a people scattered through all nations, yet subsisting as a dis- and tittle of that word on which he has caused thee to trust; tinct body, without temple, sacrifices, or political government; and save to the uttermost all that come unto the Father and who, while they attempt to suppress the trutlı, yet reluc- by Him. The word of the Lord endureth for ever : and they tantly stand forth as an unimpeachable collateral evidence, that who trust in Him shall never be confounded.

CHAPTER XXV. The parable of the ten virgins, five of whom were wise, and five foolish, 1-12. The necessity of being constantly prepared to appear before God, 13. The parable of the talents, 14—30. The manner in which God shall deal with the righteous and the wicked in the judgment of the great day, 31–46.

HEN shall the kingdom of hea- | which took their lamps, and went forth A. M. 4035. Au. Olymp. ven be likened unto ten virgins, to meet the bridegroom.

An. Olymp
CCII. 1.

A. M. 4033.
A. D. 29.

CCII. 1.

- Lev. 21. 14. Psal. 45. 9–11. 2 Cor. 11. 2. Rev. 14. 5.

b

Ephes. 5. 29, 30. Rev. 19. 7. & 21. 2, 9.

NOTES ON CHAP. XXV.

gates of repentance stand open; for I receive a gift at preVerse 1. Then shall the kingdom of hearen] The state of Jews sent, but when I shall sit in judginent in the age to come, I and professing Christians or the state of the visible church at will receive none.” Another parable mentioned by Kimchi the time of the destruction of Jerusalem, and in the day of on Isai. Ixv. 13. “ Rabbi Yuchanan, the son of Zachai, spoke judgment: for the parable appears to relate to both those

a parable concerning a king, who invited his servants, but set periods. And particularly at the time in which Christ shall them no time to come: the prudent and wary among them come to judge the world, it shall appear what kind of recep- adorned themselves, and standing at the door of the king's tion his gospel has met with. This parable or something very house, said, Is any thing wanting in the house of the king? like it is found in the Jewish records : so in a treatise intitled (i. e. Is there any work to be done?) But the foolish ones Restiti CHOCMAh, the beginning of wisdom, we read thus : that were among them went away, and working said, When “Our wise men of blessed memory say, Repent whilst thou shall the feast be in which there is no labour? Suddenly the hast strength to do it, whilst thy lamp burns, and thy oil is king sought out his servants : those who were adorned entered not extinguished ; for if thy lamp be gone out, thy oil will pro- in, and they who were still polluted entered in also. The fit thee nothing." Our doctors add in Meprasy: “ The king was glad when he met the prudent, but he was angry holy blessed God said to Israel, My sons, repent whilst the when he met the foolish: he said, Let the prudent sit dozen riches :-wlien, farther, there are before me two ways, the one

A.M.4033.
A. D. 29.

The parable of the teni

CHAP. XXV.

wise and foolish virgins. A. M. 4033 2 2 And five of them were wise, and 6 And at midnight there was a cry A. D. 29. An. Olymp. five were foolish.

made, Behold, the bridegroom com- An. Olymp.

ccciia CCIL 1.

3 They that were foolish took their || eth ; go ye out to meet him. lamps, and took no oil with them :

7 Then all those virgins arose, and « trimmed 4 But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. their lamps.

8 And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us 5 While the bridegroom tarried, they all of your oil ; for our lamps are gone out. slumbered and slept.

9 But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest

* Ch. 13. 47. & 22. 10.1 Thess. 5. 6.

• Ch. 24. 31. 1 Thess. 4. 16.

d Luke 12. 35.- --- Or, going out.

and eat-let the others stand and look on." Rabbi Eliezer Slumbered and slept.] Or, wsztzv xai exaDevdor, they became said, “ Turn to God one day before your death.” His dis- drowsy and fell asleep. As sleep is frequently used in the ciples said, “ How can a man know the day of his death ?" || Sacred Writings for death, so drowsiness, which precedes sleep, He answered them, “ Therefore you should turn to God to- | may be considered as pointing out the decays of the constiday, perhaps you may die to-morrow ; thus every day will be tution, and the sicknesses which precede death. The other employed in returning." See Kimchi in Isai. Ixv. 13. explanations which are given of this place must be unsatis

Virgins] Denoting the purity of the Christian doctrine factory to every man who is not warped by some point in his and character. In this parable, the bridegroom iş generally creed, which must be supported at every expence. Carelessunderstood to mean Jesus Christ. The feast, that state of ness disposed them to drowsiness, drowsiness to sleep, deep felicity to which he has promised to raise his genuine follow- | sleep which rendered them as unconscious of their danger, ers. The wise or prudent, and foolish virgins, those who truly as they were before inattentive to their duty. The Angloenjoy, and those who only profess the purity and holiness of saxon has hit the meaning of the original well— þa hnappudon his religion. The oil, the grace and salvation of God, or that hig ealle y slepun; of which my old MS. Bible gives a literal faith which works by love. The vessel, the heart in which | version in the English of the 14th century, forsothe—alle nap. this oil is contained. The lamp, the profession of enjoying peden and sleptyn. the burning and shining light of the gospel of Christ. Going Verse 6. At midnight there was a cry] The Jewish wedforth, the whole of their sojourning upon earth.

dings were generally celebrated in the night ; yet they usuVerse 2. Fire of them were wise] Or provident, Ogoriposa ally began at the rising of the evening star : but in this case, they took care to make a proper provision beforehand, and there was a more than ordinary delay. left nothing to be done in the last moment.

Behold, the bridegroom cometh] What an awful thing to Five were foolish.] Mwgos, which might be translated care- be summoned to appear before the Judge of quick and dead! less, is generally rendered foolish ; but this does not agree The following is an affecting relation, and fas est ab hoste doso well with Ozonspos, provident or prudent, in the first clause, ceri. “ When Rabbi Jochanan ben Zachai was sick, his diswhich is the proper meaning of the word. Mwgos, in the ciples came to visit him; and when he saw them, he began Etymologicon, is thus defined pen ogã to door, he who sees not to weep. They say to him, Rabbi ! the light of Israel, the what is proper or necessary. These did not see that it was ne right hand pillar, the strong hammer, wherefore dost thou cessary to have oil in their vessels (the salvation of God in weep? He answered them, If they were carrying me before their souls) as well as a burning lamp of religious profession, a king of flesh and blood, wlio is here to-day, and to-morrow ver. 3, 4.

in the grave; who, if he were angry with me, his anger Verse 4. Took oil in their vessels] They not only had a would not last for ever; if he put me in prison, his prison sufficiency of oil in their lamps, but they carried a vessel with would not be everlasting; if he condemned me to death, that oil to recruit their lamps, when it should be found expedient. | death would not be eternal ; whom I could soothe with words This the foolish or improvident neglected to do: hence, when or bribe with riches: yet even in these circumstances I should the oil that was in their lamps burned out, they had none to weep. But now I am going before the King of kings, the pour into the lamp to maintain the flame.

holy and the blessed God, who liveth and endureth for ever Verse 5. The bridegroom tarried] The coming of the bride and for ever ; who, if he be angry with me, his anger will groom to an individual may imply bis death: his coming to last for ever; if he put me in prison, his bondage will be the world—the final judgment. The delay—the time from a everlasting ; if he condemn me to death, that death will be man's birth till his death in the first care : in the second, the eternal; whom I cannot soothe with words nor bribe with iune from the beginning to the end of the world.

The parable of the ten

Sr. MATTHEW.

wise and foolish virgins. A.M.4033. there be not enough for us and you: 10 And while they went to buy, A. M.4053. * but go ye rather to them that sell, | the bridegroom came ;

bridegroom came ; and they An. Olymp. and buy for yourselves.

that were ready went in with him

A.D. 29. An. Olymp. CCII, 1.

CCII. 1.

a Isai. 55. 1. Hab. 2. 4. Rom. 1. 17. Gal. 6. 4.

1 Luke 13. 25. & 19. 42. & 12. S5, 36.

I

to hell and the other to paradise, and I know not in which So then it is evident that they were once lighted. They had they are carrying me, shall I not weep?” Talmud Bera once hearts illuminated and warmed by faith and love, but coth, fol. 28.

they had backslidden frow the salvation of God, and now they Verse 7. Trimmed their lamps.] Exoguencev, adorned them. are excluded from heaven, because, through their carelessI have seen some of the eastern lamps or lanthorns, the body ness, they have let the light that was in them become darkof which was a skeleton of wood and threads, covered with a ness, and have not applied in time for a fresh supply of the very thin transparent membrane, or very fine gauze, and deco salvation of God. rated with flowers painted on it. It is probable that the nup A Jewish Rabbin supposes God addressing man thus : I tial lamps were highly decorated in this way; though the act | give thee my lamp, give thou me thy lamp: if thou keep my mentioned here may mean no more than preparing tlie lamps lump, I will keep thy lamp; but if thou extinguish my lump, I for burning.

will extinguish thy lamp. That is, I give thee my word and The following account of the celebration of a wedding in testimonies to be a light unto thy feet and a lanthorn to thy Persia, taken from the Zend Avesta, vol. ii. p. 558, &c. may steps, to guide thee safely through life: give me thy soul cast some light on this place.

and all its concerns, that I may defend and save thee from all “ The day appointed for the marriage, about 5 o'clock in evil : keep my WORD, walk in my ways, and I will keep thy the evening, the bridegroom comes to the house of the bride, soul that nothing shall injure it : but if thou trample under where the mobed or priest, pronounces for the first time the foot my laws, I will cast thy soul into outer darkness. nuptial benediction. He then brings her to his own house, Verse 9. Lest those be not enough for us and you] These gives her some refreshment, and afterwards the assembly of had all been companions in the Christian course, and there her relatives and friends reconduct her to her father's house. was a time when they might have been helpful to each other; When she arrives, the mobed repeats the nuptial benediction, but that time is now past for ever-none has a particle of which is generally done about midnight ; immediately after, grace to spare, not even to help the soul of the dearest relathe bride, accompanied with a part of lier attending troop, tive! The grace which every man receives is just enough to (the rest having returned to their own homes) is reconducted save his own soul: he has no merits to bequeath to the church ; to the house of her husband, where she generally arrives about no work of supererogation, which can be placed to the acthree o'clock in the morning. Nothing can be more brilliant | count of another. than these nuptial solemnities in India. Sometimes the assem Go ye rather to them that sell, and buy] By leaving bly consists of not less than 2000 persons, all richly dressed out the particle de, but, (on the indisputable authority of in gold and silver tissue; the friends and relatives of the bride ABDGHKS. and HV. of Matthaï, with sixteen others, the encompassed with their domestics, are all mounted on horses | Armenian, Vulgate, and all the Itala but one) and transrichly harnessed. The goods, wardrobe, and even the bed posing a very little the members of the sentence, the sense of the bride are carried in triumph. The husband, richly is more advantageously represented and the reading smoothmonnted and magnificently dressed, is accompanied by his er : Rather go to them that sell, and buy for yourselves, lest friends and relatives, the friends of the bride following him there be not enough for us and you. Beza, Mill, Bengel, and in covered carriages. At intervals during the procession, Griesbach approve of the ornission of the particle ds. guns and rockets are fired, and the spectacle is rendered grand Verse 10. While they went to buy, the bridegroom came] beyond description, by a prodigious number of lighTED What a dismal thing it is, not to discover the emptiness of TORCHES, and by the sound of a multitude of musical instru- one's heart of all that is good, till it is too late to make any ments."

successful application for relief! God alone knows how many There are certain preparations which most persons believe are thus deceived. they must make at the approach of death : but alas ! it is And they that were ready) They who were prepared-who often too late. The lamp is defiled, the light almost out, and had not only a burning lamp of an evangelical profession, but the oil expended—and what adorning is a wretched sinner, had oil in their ressel, the faith that works by love in their struggling in the agonies of death, capable of preparing for hearts, and their lives adorned with all the fruits of the his guilty soul !

Spirit. Verse 8. Our lamps are gone out.] oßerrurt C1, are going out. The door was shut.] Sinners on a death-bed too often meet

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The parable

CHAP. XXV.

of the talents.

A. D. 29.

CCII. 1.

CCIT. 1.

M, N, 1933. to the marriage: and the door was the day nor the hour wherein the Son A. M. 4033. An. Olymp. shut.

of man cometh.

An. Olymp. 11 Afterward came also the other 14 | For the kingdom of heaven is virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us. as a man travelling into a far country, who

12 But he answered and said, Verily I say called his own servants, and delivered unto unto you, I know you not.

them his goods. 13 - Watch therefore, for ye know neither 15 And unto one he gave five talents, to an

Luke 13. 25. ch. 7. 21, 22, 23. — Ps. 5. 5. Hab. 1. 13. John 9. 31.-ach. 24. 42, 44. Mark 13. 33, 35. Luke 21. 96. 1 Cor. 16. 13.

1 Thes. 5. 6. 1 Pet. 5. 8. Rev. 16. 15.- -e Luke 19. 12. fch. 21. 33.

-S A talent is 1871. 10s. ch. 18. 24.

with those deceitful merchants, who promise them salvationing them. To give eminent gifts to persons incapable of profor a price which is of no vulue in the sight of God. Come perly improving them, would be only to lead them into a snare. unto me, says Jesus, and buythere is no salvation but through The talent which each man has suits his own state best; and shis blood—no hope for the sinner but that which is founded it is only pride and insanity which lead him to desire and envy upon his sacrifice and death. The door was shut-dreadful | the graces and talents of another. Five talents would be too and fatal words ! no hope remains. Nothing but death can much for some men : one talent would be too little. He who shut this door-but death may surprize us in our sins, and receives much, must make proportionate improvement: and then despair is our only portion.

from him who has received little, the improvement only of Verse 11. Afterward cume also the other virgins, saying, that little will be required. As five talents in one case, are Lord, Lord] Earnest prayer, when used in time, may do sufficient to answer the purpose for which they were given ; much good: but it appears from this parable, that there may so also are two and one. come a time, when prayer even to Jesus may be too late ! The man who improves the grace he has received however viz. when the door is shut--when death has separated the small, will as surely get to the kingdom of God, as he who body and the soul.

has received most from his master, and improved all. Verse 12 I know you not.] As if he had said, Ye are not There is a parable something like this in Sohar Chadash, of my company-ye were neither with the bride nor the fol. 47. “ A certain king gave a deposit to three of his serbridegroom : ye slept while the others were in procession. vants : the first kept it; the second lost it; the third spoiled I do not acknowledge you for my disciples-ye are not like him one part of it, and gave the rest to another to keep. After who is love-ye refused to receive his grace-ye sinned it away some time, the king came and demanded the deposit. Him when ye had it; now you are necessarily excluded from that who bad preserved it, the king praised, and made bim gokingdom, where nothing but love and purity can dwell. vernor of his house. Him who had lost it, he delivered to

Verse 13. Watch therefore] If to watch be to employ our- utter destruction, so that both his name and his possessions selves chiefly about the business of our salvation, alas ! how were blotted out. To the third, who had spoiled a part and few of those who are called Christians are there, who do given the rest to another to keep, the king said, Keep him watch ? How many who slumber? How many who are asleep? | and let him not go out of my house, till we see what the How many seized with a lethargy? How many quite dead ? other shall do, to whom he has entrusted a part : if he shall

Wherein the Son of man cometh.] These words are omitted by make a proper use of it, this man shall be restored to liberty ; many excellent MSS. most of the Versions, and several of the if not, he also shall be punished.” See Schoetgen. I have had Fathers. Griesbach has left them out of the text : Grotius, already occasion to remark, how greatly every Jewish parable Hammond, Mill, and Bengel, approve of the omission, is improved, that comes through the hands of Christ.

Verse 14. Called his own servants) God never makes the In this parable of our Lord, four things may be considered. children of men proprietors of his goods. They are formed I. The master who distributes the talents. by bis power, and upheld by his bounty, and they hold their

II. The servants who improved their talents. lives and their goods, as in many of our ancient tenures, quam- III. The servant who buried his talent. And diu domino placuerit-at the will of their Lord.

IV. His punishment. Verse 15. Unto one he gave five talentsto every man accord- 1. The master's kindness. The servants had nothing-deing to his several ability] The duties men are called to per- served nothing—had no claim on their master, yet he, in his form, are suited to their situations, and the talents they re- KINDNESS, delivers unto them his goods, not for his advantage, ceive. The good that any man has, he has received from God, but for their comfort and salvation. as also the ability to improve that good. God's graces and tem- 2. The master distributes these goods diversly ;-giving to poral mercies are suited to the power which a man has of improv- | one five, another two, and to another one. No person can com

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