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Christ's Sermon

on the Mount. simple Yes and No come soon to be more relied on tion. Usually, the former denotes 'complacency in than the most solemn asseverations of others. Thus the character of the person loved; but here it dedoes the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, like a tree notes the benignant, compassionate outgoing of desire cast into the bitter waters of human corruption, heal for another's good. bless them that curse you, do good and sweeten them.

to them that hate you, and pray for them which despiteSame Subject-Retaliation (u. 38-42). We have here fully use you, and persecute you. The best commentary the converse of the preceding lessons. They were on these matchless counsels is the bright example of negative: these are positive. 38. Ye have heard that it Him who gave them. (See 1 Peter, 2. 21-24; and cf. hath been said (Exodus, 21, 23-25; Leviticus, 24. 19, 20; Romans, 12. 20, 21; 1 Corinthians, 4. 12; 1 Peter, 3. 9.) Deuteronomy, 19, 21), An eye for an eye, and a tooth for But

But though such precepts were never before expressed a tooth-le, whatever penalty was regarded as a -perhaps not even conceived-with such breadth. proper equivalent for these This law of retribution precision, and sharpness as here, our Lord is here -designed to take vengeance out of the hands of pri- only the incomparable Interpreter of a law in force vate persons, and commit it to the magistrate-was from the beginning: and this is the only satisfactory abused in the opposite way to the commandments of view of the entire strain of this Discourse. 45. That the Decalogue. While they were reduced to the 1 ye may be the children-'that ye may be sons'-of your level of civil enactments, this judicial regulation was Father which is in heaven. The meaning is, 'that ye held to be a warrant for taking redress into their may show yourselves to be such by resembling Him' own hands, contrary to the injunctions of the old | (cf. . 9 and Ephesians, 6. 1). for he maketh his sunTestament itself (Proverbs, 20. 22; 24. 29). 39. But I 'your Father's sun.' Well might BENGEL exclaim. say unto you, That ye resist not evil; but whosoever shall 'Magnificent appellation !'-to rise on the evil and on smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust Our Lord's own meek, yet dignified bearing. when 1-rather (without the article] on evil and good, and smitten rudely on the cheek (John, 18. 22, 23), and not on just and unjust.' When we find God's own proliterally presenting the other, is the best comment cedure held up for imitation in the law, and much on these words. It is the preparedness, after one in- | more in the prophets (Leviticus, 19. 2: 20. 26; and cf. dignity, not to invite but to submit meekly to 1 Peter, 1. 15, 10), we may see that the principle of this another, without retaliation, which this strong lan- surprising verse was nothing new: but the form of it guage is meant to convey, 40. And if any man will sue certainly is that of One who spake as never man spake. thee at the law, and take away thy coat-the inner gar-46. For'if ye love them which love you, what reward have ment: in pledge for a debt (Exodus, 22. 26, 27)- let him yel do not even the pablicans the same! The publicans, gave thy cloak also-the outer and more costly gar- as collectors of taxes due to the Roman government. ment. This overcoat was not allowed to be retained were even on this account obnoxious to the Jews. over-night as a pledge from the poor, because they who sat uneasy under a foreign yoke, and disliked used it for a bed-covering. 41. And whosoever shall whatever brought this unpleasantly before them. compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain-an allusion, But the extortion practised by this class made them probably, to the practice of the Romans and some hateful to the community, who in their current eastern nations, who, when Government dispatches speech ranked them with "harlots." Nor does our had to be forwarded, obliged the people not only to Lord scruple to speak of them as others did, which furnish horses and carriages, but to give personal at- we may be sure He never would if it had been calum. tendance, often at great inconvenience, when re nious. The meaning, then, is, 'In loving those quired. But the thing here demanded is a readiness who love you, there is no evidence of superior princito submit to unreasonable demands of whatever ple: the worst of men will do this: even a publican kind, rather than raise quarrels, with all the evils will go that length.' 47. And if ye salute your brethren resulting from them. What follows is a beautiful only-of the same nation and religion with yourselves extension of this precept. 42. Give to him that asketh -what do ye more (than others l_ what do ye uncomthee. The sense of unreasonable asking is here implied mon' or 'extraordinary?' 1.e., wherein do ye excel? do (cf. Luke, 6.30), and from him that would borrow of thee not even the publicans so? The true reading here anturn not thou away. Though the word signifies classi pears to be, 'Do not even the heathens the same cally to have money lent to one on security,' or | Cf. ch. 18. 17. where the excommunicated person is 'with interest.' yet as this was not the original sense said to be "as an heathen man and a publican." of the word, and as usury was forbidden among the 48. Be ye therefore-rather, 'Ye shall therefore be,' or Jews (Exodus, 22. 25, &c.), it is doubtless simple bor-'Ye are therefore to be,' as My disciples and in My rowing which our Lord here means, as indeed the kingdom - perfect, or 'complete.' Manifestly, our whole strain of the exhortation implies. This shows Lord here speaks, not of degrees of excellence, but of that such counsels as "Owe no man anything" (Ro- the kind of excellence which was to distinguish His mans, 13, 8) are not to be taken absolutely; else the disciples and characterize His kingdom, When there. Scripture commendations of the righteous for "lend- fore He adds, even as your Father which is in heaven is ing" to his necessitous brother (Psalm 37. 26: 112. 6: 1 perfect. He refers to that full-orbed glorious complete. Luke, 6. 37) would have no application. turn notness which is in the great Divine Model, "their thou away- & graphic expression of unfeeling refusal Father which is in heaven." to relieve a brother in extremity.

CHAPTER VI. Same Subject-Love to Enemies (v. 43-48). 43. Ye have SERMON ON THE MOUNT - continued. Ver. 1-18 heard that it hath been said (Leviticus, 19. 18). Thou FURTHER ILLUSTRATION OF THE RIGHTEOUSNESS shalt love thy neighbour. To this the corrupt teachers | OF THE KINGDOM-ITS UNOSTENTATIOUSNESS, Gen. added, and hate thine enemy-as if the one were a eral Caution against Ostentation in Religious Drities legitimate inference from the other, instead of being (v. 1). 1. Take heed that ye do not your alms. But the true & detestable gloss, as BENGEL indignantly calls it reading seems clearly to be 'your righteousness. LIGHTFOOT quotes some of the cursed maxims in- The external authority for both readings is pretty culcated by those traditionists regarding the proper nearly equal; but internal eyidence is decidedly in treatment of all Gentiles. No wonder that the Ro- favour of righteousness. The subject of the second mans charged the Jews with hatred of the human verse being almsgiving,' that word-so like the other race. 44. But I say unto you, Love your enemies. The in Greek-might easily be substituted for it by the word here used denotes moral love, as distinguished copyist: whereas the opposite would not be so likely from the other word, which expresses personal aff9c-| But it is still more in favour of "righteousness," tha:

Christ's Sermon

on the Mount. i me so read the first verse, it then becomes a general place of retirement' - and when thou hast shut thy heading for this whole Section of the Discourse, door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father inealcating unostentatiousness in all deeds of right-which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly. Of course casdesz-Almsgiving. Prayer, and Fasting being, in it is not the simple publicity of prayer which is here that case, but selected examples of this righteous condemned. It may be offered in any circumstances, zest; wbereas, if we read "Do not your alms,” &c. however open, if not prompted by the spirit of ostenthis fint verse will have no reference but to that one tation, but dictated by the great ends of prayer itpoint By "righteousness," in this case, we are to self. It is the retiring character of true prayer which understand that same righteousness of the kingdom is here taught. a beaven, whose leading features--in opposition to Supplementary Directions, and Model-Prayer (n. 7-15). traditional perversions of it-it is the great object of 7. But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions. 'Babble this Discourse to open up: that righteousness of not' would be a better rendering, both for the form roich the Lord says, “Except your righteousness of the word-which in both languages is intended to shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pha- imitate the sound and for the sense, which expresses risors, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of not so much the repetition of the same words as a beaven" (ch. a 20). To "do" this righteousness, was senseless multiplication of them; as appears from

old and well understood expression. Thus, what follows. as the heathen do: for they think that * Blessed is he that doeth righteousness at all times they shall be heard for their much speaking. This method Palm 106. 3). It refers to the actings of righteous of heathen devotion is still observed by Hindu and Sess in the life-the outgoings of the gracious nature Mohammedan devotees. With the Jews, says LIGHT-of which our Lord afterwards said to His disciples, FOOT, it was a maxim, that 'Every one who multiplies "Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much prayer is heard. In the Church of Rome, not only trut: so shall ye be my disciples" (John, 16. 8). before is it carried to a shameless extent, but, as THOLUCK man, to be seen of them with the view' or 'intention justly observes, the very Prayer which our Lord gave of being beheld of them.' See the same expression as an antidote to vain repetitions is the most abused in ch. & 2 True, He had required them to let their to this superstitious end; the number of times it light 80 shine before men that they might see their is repeated counting for so much more merit. Is not good works, and glorify their Father which is in this just that characteristic feature of heathen devobesten (ch. & 16. But this is quite consistent with tion which our Lord here condemns ? But praying

of making a display of our righteousness for self. much, and using at times the same words, is not here durification. In fact, the doing of the former neces condemned, and has the example of our Lord Himsarily implies our not doing the latter. otherwise ye self in its favour. 8. Be not ye therefore like unto them: 272 RO Teward of your Father which is in heaven. When for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of all duty is done to God-as primarily enjoining and before ye ask him-and so needs not to be informed of Szally judging of it-He will take care that it be duly our wants, any more than to be roused to attend to recognised : but when done purely for ostentation, them by our incessant speaking. What a view of God cannot own it, nor is His judgment of it even God is here given, in sharp contrast with the gods of thought of-God accepts only what is done to Him- the heathen! But let it be carefully noted that it is

ll. So much for the general principle. Now follow not as the general Father of Mankind that our Lord three illustrations of it.

says, "Your Father" knoweth what ye need before Almagining (r. 2-4. 2. Therefore, when thou doest ye ask it; for it is not men, as such, that He is ad. Lise alus, do not sound a trumpet before thee. The ex dressing in this Discourse, but His own disciples-the pression is to be taken figuratively for blazoning it. poor in spirit, the mourners, the meek, hungry and Hence our expression to 'trumpet.' as the hypocrites thirsty souls, the merciful, the pure in heart, the s. This word-of such frequent occurrence in Scrip peacemakers, who allow themselves to have all manDure, signifying primarily one who acts a part-de ner of evil said against them for the Son of Man's Dotes one who either pretends to be what he is not sake-in short, the new-born children of God, who, as here), or dissambles what he really is (as in Luke, making their Father's interests their own, are here . 1. . in the synagogues and in the streets-the assured that their Father, in return, makes their places of religious and of secular resort-that they interests His, and needs neither to be told nor to be may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you. In such reminded of their wants. Yet He will have His chilunquat expressions, it is the Lawgiver and Judge Him-dren pray to Him, and links all His promised supSed that we hear speaking to us. They have their replies to their petitions for them; thus encouraging Far Al they wanted was human applause, and us to draw near and keep near to Him,'to talk and they have it and with it, all they will ever get. 3. walk with Him, to open our every case to Him, and But when thou coest alms, let not thy left hand know assure ourselves that thus asking we shall receivethat tay right hand doeth. 'So far from making a dis- thus seeking we shall find-thus knocking it shall be la dit, dwell not on it even in thine own thoughts, opened to us. 9. After this manner-more simply, let it minister to spiritual pride.' 4. That thine alms Thus, therefore pray ye. The "ye" is emphatic here. may be in secret, and thy Father which seeth in secret in contrast with the heathen prayers. That this dizal) shall reward thee openly. The word “Him-matchless prayer was given not only as a model, but self appears to be an unauthorized addition to the as a form, might be concluded from its very nature. leat which the sense no doubt suggested. See Did it consist only of hints or directions for prayer, it 1 Timothy, & 25; Romans, 2. 16: 1 Corinthians, 4. 5. could only be used as a directory; but seeing it is an frayer (r. 5. 6). 5. And when thou prayest, thou shalt actual prayer-designed, indeed, to show how much

accarding to the preferable reading, 'when ye | real prayer could be compressed into the fewest ay ye shall not be as the hypocrites are: for they love words, but still, as a prayer, only the more incom

it standing in the synagogues and in the corners of parable for that-it is strange that there should be a

streets (see on r. 2), that they may be seen of men. I doubt whether we ought to pray that very prayer. Ey I say unto you, They have, &c. The standing Surely the words with which it is introduced, in the

are in prayer was the ancient practice, alike in second utterance and varied form of it which we the Jewish and in the early Christian Church, as is have in Luke, 11. 2, ought to set this at rest: "When well known to the learned. But of course this con ye pray, say, Our Father.” Nevertheless, since the

Tous posture opened the way for the ostentatious. second form of it varies considerably from the first,
But then ther
Futbou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet-a, and since no example of its actual use, or express

Christ's Sermon

on the Mount. quotation of its phraseology, occurs in the sequel of existed ever since there were men who "walked with the New Testament, we are to guard against a super-God" (Genesis, 6. 24), and "waited for His salvation" stitious use of it. flow early this began to appear in Genesis, 49. 18): who were "continually with Him. the Church-services, and to what an extent it was holden by His right hand" (Psalm 73. 33), and who. afterwards carried, is known to every one versed in even in the valley of the shadow of death, feared Church History, Nor has the spirit which bred this no evil, when He was with them (Psalm 23. 4). When abuse quite departed from some branches of the Messiah Himself appeared, it was, as a visible kingProtestant Church, though the opposite and equally dom, at hand." His death laid the deep foundations condemnable extreme is to be found in other branches of it-His ascension on high. "leading captivity capof it.

tive and receiving gifts for men, yea, for the rebelModel-Prayer (1 9-13). According to the Latin | lious, that the Lord God might dwell among them," fathers and the Lutheran Church, the petitions of the and the Pentecostal effusion of the Spirit, by which Lord's Prayer are seven in number: according to the those gifts for men descended upon the rebellious. Greek fathers, the Reformed Church, and the West and the Lord God was beheld, in the persons of minster divines, they are only six; the two last being thousands upon thousands, "dwelling" among men regarded--we think, less correctly-as one. The first -was a glorious "coming” of this kingdom. But it three petitions have to do exclusively with GOD: | is still to come, and this petition, *Thy kingdom " Thy name be hallowed"-"Thy kingdom come" - come," must not cease to ascend so long as one subThy will be done." And they occur in a descending ject of it remains to be brought in. But does not scale - from Himself down to the manifestation of this prayer stretch further forward-to "the glory to Himself in His kingdom: and from His kingdom to be revealed," or that stage of the kingdom called the entire subjection of its subjects, or the complete the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour doing of His will. The remaining four petitions Jesus Christ?” (2 Peter, 1. 11.) Not directly, perhaps. have to do with OURSELVES: "Give us our bread" since the petition that follows this-“Thy will be "Forgive us our debts"_"Lead us not into tempta- done in earth, as it is in heaven"--would then bring tion"-"Deliver us from evil." But these latter us back to this present state of imperfection. Still. petitions occur in an ascending scale-from the bodily the mind refuses to be so bounded by stages and wants of every day up to our final deliverance from degrees, and in the act of praying “Thy kingdom all evil.

come,” it irresistibly stretches the wings of its faith. Invocation: Our Father which art in heaven. In the and longing, and joyous expectation out to the final former clause we express His nearness to us: in the and glorious consummation of the kingdom of God. latter, His distance from us. (See Ecclesiastes, 5. 2; 1 Third Petition: Thy will be done in earth, as it is in Isaiah, 66. 1.) Holy, loving familiarity suggests the heaven-or, as the same words are rendered in Lake, one; awful reverence the other. In calling Him as in heaven, so upon earth-as cheerfully, as con"Father" we express a relationship we have all knownstantly, as perfectly. But some will ask, Will this and felt surrounding us even from our infancy: but ever be? We answer, If the "new heavens and new in calling Him our Father “who art in heaven," we earth” are to be just our present material system contrast Him with the fathers we all have here purified by fire and transfigured, of course it will. below, and so raise our souls to that "heaven" where But we incline to think that the aspiration which we He dwells, and that Majesty and Glory which are are taught in this beautiful petition to breathe forth there as in their proper home. These first words of has no direct reference to any such organic fulfilment, the Lord's Prayer-this Invocation with which it and is only the spontaneous and resistless longing of opens - what a brightness and warmth does it throw the renewed soul--put into words-to see the whole over the whole prayer, and into what a serene region inhabited earth in entire conformity to the will of does it introduce the praying believer, the child of God. It asks not if ever it shall be-or if ever it can God, as he thus approaches Him! It is true that the be-in order to pray this prayer. It must have its paternal relationship of God to His people is by no holy yearnings breathed forth, and this is just the means strange to the Old Testament. See Deutero- bold yet simple expression of them. Nor is the Old nomy, 32. 6; Psalm 103. 13; Isaiah, 63. 16; Jeremiah, 3. Testament without prayers which come very near to 4, 19; Malachi, 1. 6: 2. 10.) But these are only glimpses this (Psalm 7. 9; 67.; 72. 19; &c.. -the "back parts" (Exodus, 33. 23), if we may so Fourth Petution: 11. Give us this day our daily bread. say, in comparison with the "open face" of our Father The compound word here rendered "daily" occurs revealed in Jesus. (See on 2 Corinthians, 3. 18.) Nor nowhere else, either in classical or sacred Greek, and is it too much to say, that the view which our Lord 80 must be interpreted by the analogy of its comgives, throughout this His very first lengthened dis-ponent parts. But on this critics are divided. To course, of "our Father in heaven," beggars all that those who would understand it to mean, "Give us was ever taught, even in God's own Word, or con this day the bread of to-morrow"-as if the sense thus ceived before by His saints, on this subject.

slid into that of Luke, "Give us day by day” (as First Petition: Hallowed be-i.e., Be held in rever BENGEL, MEYER, &c.)- it may be answered that the ence' regarded and treated as holy. thy name, sense thus brought out is scarcely intelligible, if not God's name means 'Himself as revealed and mani. something less; that the expression "bread of tofested.' Everywhere in Scripture God defines and morrow" is not at all the same as bread "from day marks off the faith and love and reverence and obedi. to day," and that. so understood, it would seem to ence He will have from men by the disclosures which contradicto. 34. The great majority of the best critics He makes to them of what He is; both to shut out taking the word to be compounded of ousia, sudfalse conceptions of Him, and to make all their devo-stance,' or 'being') understand by it the staff of life, tion take the shape and hue of His own teaching. 'the bread of subsistence;' and so the sense will be. Too much attention capnot be paid to this.

"Give us this day the bread which this day's neces. Second Petition : 10. Thy kingdom come. The king-sities require.' In this case, the rendering of our dom of God is that moral and spiritual kingdom authorized version (after the Vulgate, LUTHER, and which the God of grace is setting up in this fallen some of the best modern critics)-"our daily bread" world, whose subjects consist of as many as have -is, in sense, accurate enough. (See Proverbs, 30. 8.3 been brought into hearty subjection to His gracious Among commentators, there was early shown an sceptre, and of which His Son Jesus is the glorious inclination to understand this as a prayer for the Head. In the inward reality of it, this kingdom heavenly bread, or spiritual nourishment; and in this


Crists Sermon

on the Mount. they have been followed by many superior expositors, Sixth Petition: 13. And lead us not into temptation. eren down to our own times. But as this is quite He who honestly seeks, and has the assurance of, unnatural, so it deprives the Christian of one of the forgiveness for past sin. will strive to avoid commitsweetest of his privileges-to cast his bodily wants, ting it for the future. But conscious that “when we ia this short prayer, by one simple petition, upon would do good evil is present with us," we are taught his beavenly Father. No doubt the spiritual mind to offer this sixth petition, which comes naturally wil, from the meat that perisheth," naturally rise close upon the preceding, and flows, indeed, instincin thonght to "that meat which endureth to ever | tively from it in the hearts of all earnest Christians. lasting life." But let it be enough that the petition There is some difficulty in the form of the petition, as about bodily wants irresistibly suggests a higher peti. it is certain that God does bring His people--as He tion, and let us not rob ourselves-out of a morbiddid Abraham, and Christ Himself into circumspintuality - of our one petition in this prayer for stances both fitted and designed to try them, or test that bodily provision which the immediate sequel the strength of their faith. Some meet this by reof this discourse shows that our heavenly Father has garding the petition as simply an humble expression o much at heart. In limiting our petitions, how- of self-distrust and instinctive shrinking from daneter, to provision for the day, what a spirit of child ger: but this seems too weak. Others take it as a ske derendence does the Lord both demand and prayer against yielding to temptation, and so equiva

lent to a prayer for "support and deliverance when Fifth Petition: 12. And forgive us our debts. A we are tempted:' but this seems to go beyond the vitally important view of sin this - as an offence | precise thing intended. We incline to take it as a asinst God demanding reparation to His dishon prayer against being drawn or sucked, of our own cured claims upon our absolute subjection. As the will, into temptation, to which the word here used debtor in the creditor's hand, so is the sinner in the seems to lend some countenance-Introduce us not.' hands of God. This idea of sin had indeed come up This view, while it does not put into our mouths a before in this Discourse in the warning to agree | prayer against being tempted-which is more than with our adversary quickly, in case of sentence being the Divine procedure would seem to warrant-does waxed upon us, adjudging us to payment of the last not, on the other hand, change the sense of the peti. Earthing, and to imprisonment till then (ch. 6. 25. 26). I tion into one for support under temptation, which and it comes up once and again in our Lord's subse- the words will hardly bear; but it gives us a subject quent teaching-as in the parable of the Creditor for prayer, in regard to temptation, most definite, and and his two debtors Luke, 7. 41, &al. and in the of all others most needful. It was precisely this anble of the Unmerciful debtor (ch. 18. 23, &c.).which Peter needed to ask, but did not ask, when Bus by embodying it in this brief Model of accept- of his own accord, and in spite of difficulties - he able prayer, and as the first of three petitions more pressed for entrance into the palace-hall of the high

less bearing upon sin, our Lord teaches us, in the priest, and where, once sucked into the scene and Enst emphatic manner conceivable, to regard this atmosphere of temptation, he fell so foully. And view of sin as the primary and fundamental one. if so, does it not seem pretty clear that this was exAnswering to this is the "forgiveness" which it di- actly what our Lord meant His disciples to pray recte w to seek - not the removal from our own against when He said in the garden-" Watch and bearts of the stain of sin, nor yet the removal of our pray, that ye enter not into temptation!" (ch. 26. 41.) et dread of God's anger, or of unworthy suspicions Scventh Petition: But deliver us from evil. We can of His love, which is all that some tell us we have to see no good reason for regarding this as but the eare about-but the removal from God's own mind second half of the sixth petition. With far better of Bis displeasure against us on account of sin, or, to ground might the second and third petitions be reretain the figure, the wiping or crossing out from garded as one. The “but” connecting the two peti

book of remembrance" of all entries against tions is an insufficient reason for regarding them as 2 on this account. As we forgive our debtors - the one, though enough to show that the one thought

e view of sin as before: only now transferred to naturally follows close upon the other. As the exDe region of offences given and received between pression from evil" may be equally well rendered mas and man. After what has been said on ch. 6. 7. 'from the evil one,' a number of superior critics think A will not be thought that our Lord here teaches the devil is intended, especially from its following that our exercise of forgiveness towards our offend- close upon the subject of "temptation." But the

a lellow-men absolutely precedes and is the proper comprehensive character of these brief petitions, and traand of God's forgiveness of us. His whole teach- the place which this one occupies, as that on which 22 indeed -as of all Scripture-is the reverse of all our desires die away, seems to us against so con

3 But as no one can reasonably imagine himself tracted a view of it. Nor can there be a reasonable to be the object of Divine forgiveness who is deliber- doubt that the apostle, in some of the last sentences Bay and habitually unforgiving towards his fellow which he penned before he was brought forth to suffer a. so it is a beautiful provision to make our right for his Lord, alludes to this very petition in the

k and expect daily forgiveness of our daily language of calın assurance-"And the Lord shall Bertoming, and our final absolution and acquittal deliver me from every evil work (cf. the Greek of the He great day of admission into the kingdom, de-two passages), and will preserve me unto his heavenly

et upon our consciousness of a forgiving disposi. kingdom" (2 Timothy. 4. 18). This final petition, wa lowards our feilows, and our preparedness to then, is only rightly grasped when regarded as a potest before the Searcher of hearts that we do prayer for deliverance from all evil of whatever kind actually forgive them. See Mark, 11. 25. 26.) God -not only from sin, but from all its consequences

Es own image reflected in His forgiving chil. | fully and finally. Fitly, then, are our prayers ended sea, but to ask God for what we ourselves refuse with this. For what can we desire which this does

men, is to insult Him. So much stress does our not carry with it? For thine is the kingdom, and the un pat tipon this, that immediately after the close power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.--If any reliance this Prayer, it is the one point in it which He is to be placed on external evidence, this doxology, * back upon (r. 14. 15. for the purpose of we think, can hardly be considered part of the origianly assuring us that the Divine procedure in nal text. It is wanting in all the most ancient MSS.: matter of forgiveness will be exactly what our it is wanting in the Old Latin version and in the

I Vulgate: the former mounting up to about the

Christ's Sermon

on the Mount. middle of the second century, and the latter being a fess to bow to the teaching of Christ is it practically revision of it in the fourth century by JEROME, a disregarded! What a man loves,' says LUTHER, most reverential and conservative as well as able and quoted by THOLUCK, 'that is his God. For he carries impartial critic. As might be expected from this, it it in his heart, he goes about with it night and day. is passed by in silence by the earliest Latin fathers; he sleeps and wakes with it; be it what it maybut even the Greek commentators, when expounding wealth or pelf, pleasure or renown.' But because this Prayer, pass by the doxology. On the other "laying up" is not in itself sinful, nay, in some cases hand, it is found in a majority of MSS., though not enjoined (2 Corinthians, 12. 14), and honest industry the oldest: it is found in all the Syriac versions, and sagacious enterprise are usually rewarded with even the Peshito-dating probably as early as the prosperity, many flatter themselves that all is right second century - although this version wants the between them and God while their closest attention, * Amen," which the doxology. if genuine, could anxiety, zeal, and time are exhausted upon these hardly have wanted; it is found in the Sahidic or earthly pursuits. To put this right, our Lord adds Thebaic version made for the Christians of Upper what follows, in which there is profound practical Egypt, possibly as early as the Old Latin; and it is wisdom. 22. The light-rather, The lamp'-of the body found in perhaps most of the later versions. On a is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single-simple, review of the evidence, the strong probability, we clear.' As applied to the outward eye, this means think, is that it was no part of the original text. 14. general soundness; particularly, not looking two For if ye forgive men, &c.: 15. But if ye forgive not, &c. ways. Here, as also in classical Greek, it is used See on v. 12.

figuratively to denote the simplicity of the mind's Fasting (v. 16-18). Having concluded His supple eye, singleness of purpose, looking right at its object, mentary directions on the subject of Prayer with as opposed to having two ends in view. (See Prothis divine Pattern, our Lord now returns to the verbs, 4. 25-27.) thy whole body shall be full of lightsubject of Unostentatiousness in our deeds of right illuminated,' As with the bodily vision, the man eousness, in order to give one more illustration of who looks with a good, sound eye walks in light, seeit, in the matter of Fasting. 16. Moreover, when ye fast ing every object clear; so a simple and persistent pur-referring, probably, to private and voluntary fast pose to serve and please God in everything will make ing, which was to be regulated by each individual for the whole character consistent and bright. 23. But himself; though in spirit it would apply to any fast. if thine eye be evil-distempered,' or, as we should be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they say, If we have got a bad eye. thy whole body shall disfigure their faces-lit., make unseen;' very well ren-be fu

be full of darkness-darkened.' As a vitiated eye, or dered "disfigure." They went about with a slovenly an eye that looks not straight and full at its object. appearance, and ashes sprinkled on their head. that sees nothing as it is, so a mind and heart divided bethey may appear unto men to fast. It was not the tween heaven and earth is all dark. If therefore the deed, but reputation for the deed which they sought; light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkand with this view those hypocrites multiplied their ness! As the conscience is the regulative faculty. fasts. And are the exhausting fasts of the Church of and a man's inward purpose, scope, aim in life, deRome, and of Romanizing Protestants, free from termines his character - if these be not simple and this taint? Verily I say unto you, They have their re- heavenward, but distorted and double, what must ward. 17. But thou, when thou fastest, anoint thine head, all the other faculties and principles of our nature and wash thy face - as the Jews did, except when be which take their direction and character from mourning (Daniel, 10. 3); so that the meaning is, these, and what inust the whole man and the whole 'Appear as usual'-appear so as to attract no notice. life be, but a mass of darkness? In Luke (11. 36) the 18. That thou appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy | converse of this statement very strikingly expresses Father which is in secret: and thy Father, which seeth in what pure, beautiful, broad perceptions the clarity of secret, shall reward thee (openly The "openly" seems the inward eye imparts: "If evidently a later addition to the text of this verse be full of light, having no part dark, the whole shall from v. 4, 7, though of course the idea is implied. be full of light, as when the bright shining of a candle

19-34. CONCLUDING ILLUSTRATIONS OF THE doth give thee light." But now for the application RIGHTEOUSNESS OF THE KINGDOM - HEAVENLY of this. 24. No man can serve. The word means to MINDEDNESS AND FILIAL CONFIDENCE. 19. Lay not belong wholly and be entirely under command to." up for ourselves-or hoard not-treasures upon earth, two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the where moth- clothes-moth.' Eastern treasures, con other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the sisting partly in costly dresses stored up (Job, 27. 16), other. Even if the two masters be of one character were liable to be consumed by moths (Job, 13. 28: and have but one object, the servant must take law Isaiah, 50. 9; 61. 8). In James, 6. 2 there is an evident from one or other: though he may do what is agreereference to our Lord's words here. and rust-any able to both, he cannot, in the nature of the thing, * eating into' or 'consuming;' here, probably, 'wear be serrant to more than one. Much less if, as in the and-tear.' doth corrupt -- cause to disappear.' By present case, their interests are quite different, and this reference to moth and rust our Lord would teach even conflicting. In this case, if our affections be in how perishable are such earthly treasures and where the service of the one-if we "love the one"-we must thieves break through and steal. Treasures these, how of necessity "hate the other;" if we determine resoprecarious! 20. But lay up for yourselves treasures in lutely to "hold to the one, we must at the same heaven-The language in Luke (12. 33) is very bold- time disregard, and, if he insist on his claims upon

Sell that ye have, and give alms; provide yourselves us, even "despise the other." Ye cannot serve God and bags which wax not old, a treasure in the heavens mammon. The word "mamon"-better written with that faileth not,” &c. where neither moth nor rust one m-is a foreign one, whose precise derivation doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor cannot certainly be determined, though the most steal. Treasures these, in perishable and unassall probable one gives it the sense of what one trusts able! (Cf. Colossians, 3. 2.) 21. For where your trea- | in.' Here, there can be no doubt it is used for riches. sure is-that which ye value most, there will your considered as an idol-master, or god of the heart. heart be also. I' Thy treasure-thy heart' is probably The service of this god and the true God together is the true reading here: 'your,' in Luke, 12. 34, from here, with a kind of indignant curtness, pronounced which it seems to have come in here.] Obvious impossible. But since the teaching of the preceding though this maxim be, by what multitudes who pro- verses might seem to endanger our falling short of

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