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And the whole multitude sought to touch Him: for there went virtue out of Him, and healed them all.

Concerning the places enumerated above, in verse 17, the Reader may consult the notes on St. Matthew iv. 24, 25; and St. Mark iii. 8.-On the statement in ver. 19, he is requested to read the notes on St. Mark v. 31. The Sermon on the Mount begins at this place.

20 And He lifted up His eyes on His Disciples, and said, Blessed be ye poor: for yours is the Kingdom of GOD.

We have sometimes seen it pointed out that since, in St. Matthew, (v. 3,) we find "Blessed are the poor in spirit,"-not Poverty of Estate, but Lowliness of Heart, has here the promise of a Blessing.

But let no one be so cruel as to rob the poor man of his Inheritance, (as this most precious promise may be called,) by seeking thus to explain it away. "I hold it for a most infallible rule, in Expositions of Sacred Scripture," (says Hooker,) “that where a literal construction will stand, the farthest from the letter is commonly the worst." Now, "a literal construction will stand" here;-is in strict keeping with our LORD's other recorded sayings; (as, St. Luke xviii. 24, 25: St. Matthew xix. 23, 24;)-and is required by what follows in ver. 24. It is not hard to see how conducive to Holiness is a lowly Estate; how many helps it affords to the practice of Piety; from how many snares it defends a man. Then only are the "poor" in their possessions not "blessed," when they are covetous in their dispositions: not "rich in Faith." But Poverty cheerfully submitted to and patiently endured, is doubtless full of Blessedness,-will certainly inherit a blessing. Consider, by all means, 2 Cor. vi. 10: and St. James ii. 5,-where there seems to be a reference to the present place. See also the note on St. Matthew v. 3.

21 Blessed are ye that hunger now: for ye shall be filled.

An excellent living Writer supposes that among the multitude addressed by our LORD, there may have been many who were actually suffering Hunger, in conse quence of their long attendance on His footsteps: and he refers to St. Matthew xiv. 15, and xv. 32. So that the paraphrase of our LORD's words would run thus:"Blessed are ye, whose Hunger and Thirst after Righteousness leads you patiently to endure bodily Hunger, while you follow Me: for ye shall be filled with Bread from Heaven."(d)

Blessed are ye that weep now: for ye shall laugh.

"In the eye of Heaven," says an ancient Bishop, "Blessedness begins at the point which, in human estimation, is reckoned the extreme of Misery." See St. John xvi. 20 to 22. Of our Blessed LORD it is stated twice, that He hungered; (e) and twice, that He thirsted; (f) three times it is said that He "wept."(g) It is not once recorded that He smiled.

22 Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of Man's sake.

"Separate you;"-that is, from their Religious Assemblies; as in St. John ix. 22, 34: xii. 42. See especially St. John xvi. 2.

"Your name:"—that is, the name of "Christian."(h) See St. Matthew xxiv. 9. -St. Peter,-(who heard our LORD pronounce the words in the text,)—alludes to them in his first Epistle:-iv. 14 and 16. So also may St. James be thought to do, in ver. 7 of his second chapter; when his previous allusion to St. Luke vi. 20, (already noticed,)(i) is considered.

23 Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your

(d) St. John vi. 32 to 35.

(f) St. John iv. 6, 7: xix. 28.

(g) St. Luke xix. 41.

(h) Which was a very early appellation. See Acts xi. 26: (i) See above, the end of the note on ver. 20.

(e) St. Matthew iv. 2: xxi. 18. St. John xi. 35. Hebrews v. 7. xxvi. 28.

reward is great in Heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the Prophets.

24 But woe unto you

that are rich!

It is obvious that Poverty and Riches, in the literal sense of those words, are here spoken of: see above, on ver. 20. And consider St. Mark x. 23, 24: and St. James v. 1. But our LORD does not, of course, denounce "Woe" on persons simply because they are rich, (as He denounces it on the Pharisees, in St. Matthew xxiii. 13 to 16.) Nor does He denounce woe, at all; but rather says, "Alas! for you that are rich:" (which is the force of “Woe” in St. Matthew xxiv. 19;)

for ye have received your consolation.

"For ye that, trusting in your riches, and accounting them sufficient for your Happiness, neglect the spiritual treasures which I offer you,-may be assured that you have received all your enjoyment in this world, and have no ground for expecting any in the world to come." Verses 22 and 23 may be compared with St. Matthew v. 11, 12; where see the notes. In connection with verse 24, recollect the words of Abraham addressed to Lazarus,-St. Luke xvi. 25.

25 Woe unto you that are full! for ye shall hunger.

"For ye that are full of earthly good things, are in imminent peril of not desiring anything better. And all such shall one day find the want of both heavenly and earthly goods."

The Parable of Lazarus is again brought to our remembrance by these solemn sayings. Consider how the Rich Man, who had "fared sumptuously every day," being in torments, prayed that a drop of water might be sent to "cool his tongue!"(k)

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Woe unto you that laugh now! for ye shall mourn and weep.

Alas! for as many of you as spend all your lives in careless and ungodly mirth. For the portion of all such is the place of torment."

26 Woe unto you, when all men shall speak well of you! for so did their fathers to the false prophets.

Thus "Woe" has been four times denounced, corresponding with the four proclamations of "Blessed" which preceded. What was "said to them of old time," -and which St. Matthew gives next, (v. 21 to 43,)-is in a great measure suppressed by St. Luke: with reference however to all that he omits, he proceeds with the word

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27, 28 But I say unto you which hear, Love your enemies, do good to them which hate you, bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully use you.

In conformity with which precept of her LORD, the Church, in her liturgy, directs us to pray for "our enemies, persecutors, and slanderers." Compare the words of the text, with St. Matthew v. 44, and see the note there.

We are not to think that the Prophets,- -as David, throughout the Book of Psalms, -violate the spirit of this precept. Their imprecations are against GOD'S enemies; not against their own. Those awful words in Psalm cix., for instance, which shock the carnal ear, (verses 6 to 13,) prove to have been words "which the HOLY GHOST, by the mouth of David, spake concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took JESUS."(1) If, therefore, David "devoteth his enemies to destruction," (as it is said in the heading of Psalm lxix.)-he is found, throughout, to speak prophetically, in the person of CHRIST. (m) Or again, they are his own enemies, only because they are the enemies of GOD, and His Church: whether "flesh and blood," (n) -(as when David prays to be delivered "out of the hand of the wicked, out of the

(k) St. Luke xvi. 24. (1) Acts i. 16: and see ver. 20. (m) Compare verse 4 of that Psalm, with St. John xv. 25:-verse 9, with St. John ii. 17, and Romans xv. 3:-ver. 21, with St. John xix. 29:-ver. 25, with Acts i. 20.

(n) Ephes. vi. 12.

hand of the unrighteous and cruel man:”(o) or the Spiritual Enemies of Man's Salvation.

29, 30, 31 And unto him that smiteth thee on the one cheek, offer also the other; and him that taketh away thy cloak, forbid not to take thy coat also. Give to every man that asketh of thee; and of him that taketh away thy goods ask them not again. And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.

Concerning verses 29 and 30, the reader is referred to the notes on St. Matthew v. 41 and 42. Compare verse 31 with St. Matthew vii. 12, and see the note there.

32, 33, 34 For if ye love them which love you, what thank have ye? for sinners also love those that love them. And if ye do good to them which do good to you, what thank have ye? for sinners also do even the same. And if ye lend to them of whom ye hope to receive, what thank have ye? for sinners also lend to sinners, to receive as much again.

Verses 32 to 34 should be compared with St. Matthew v. 46, 47,-where see the notes. St. Matthew, instead of "sinners," says "Publicans;" concerning whom see the note on St. Mark ii. 15.-"What thank have ye?" (for which St. Matthew (p) gives "What reward have ye?") signifies-What favour can ye expect at the hands of God?

35, 36 But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the Children of the Highest; for He is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil. Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful.

These verses are illustrated by St. Matthew v. 44, 45 and 48; and should be compared with them.

It will be perceived that the entire contents of St. Matthew vi. are omitted in this part of St. Luke's Gospel. It is because St. Luke intended to supply the sayings which St. Matthew there records, later,-when the same Divine Speaker repeated the self-same sayings, or the like of them. This method of the Evangelists tends to the enriching of the Gospel Treasury, and is full of instruction and delight.

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37, 38 Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven: give, and it shall be given unto you: good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal, it shall be measured to you again.

Compare verses 37 and 38 with St. Matthew vii. 1 and 2; (where see the notes;) and observe how useful the later Gospel is in completing the sense of the earlier one. But our LORD does not say "shall men give." His words "[they] shall give," probably signify only "shall be given:" just as "[they] require," in St. Luke xii. 20, is Englished,-"shall be required." Where the vest is large and loose, as in the East it is, corn may be carried in the bosom. See Psalm lxxix. 12, and xxxv. 13.

39, 40 And He spake a parable unto them, Can the blind lead the blind? shall they not both fall into the ditch? The Disciple is not above his Master: but every one that is perfect shall be as his Master. That is, Greater Virtue cannot be expected in the Disciple than was displayed by the Master. Strictly to resemble his Master, is the praise of a perfect Disciple.

(0) Psalm lxxi. 4.

(p) St. Matth. v. 46.

But besides this,-No keenness of spiritual discernment can be looked for in the blind. Whence it follows,

41 And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy Brother's eye, but perceivest not the beam that is in thine own eye?

Consider the conduct of Judah, when he passed sentence on Tamar,-Genesis xxxviii. 24: and, still more remarkably, of David, when “Nathan's parable of the ewe lamb caused him to be his own judge." (q) How many men come under the censure of the present passage!

Take notice in how marked a manner Sin is here (verses 39 to 42) spoken of as something which blinds the eye; and blocks up the door at which Knowledge chiefly enters. Surely an apt figure! since To see GOD, is the blessing promised to "the pure in heart:"(r) while correct spiritual discernment is often spoken of as the privilege of the Just.(s) Little sins are motes,-which slightly impair the faculty of vision: great sins are beams,-which entirely destroy it. He therefore that lives in Sin walks in Darkness. Consider the constancy of the Sacred Imagery, by a reference to such places as the following,-St. Matthew vi. 22, 23, (where see the notes;) xv. 14: St. John iii. 19, 20: ix. 39 to 41: 2 Cor. iv. 4: 2 St. Peter i. 9: 1 St. John ii. 9 and 11, &c.

42 Either how canst thou say to thy Brother, Brother, let me pull out the mote that is in thine eye, when thou thyself beholdest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, cast out first the beam out of thine own eye, and then shalt thou see clearly to pull out the mote that is in thy brother's eye.

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The Reader is requested to read the remarks already offered on this verse, in the notes on St. Matthew vii. 5. Our LORD is showing that he "is not a good man who, although he reproves others for their faults, does bad actions himself." proceeds, therefore, to say,-"For there is no good tree which bringeth forth bad fruit:" or, as it is here rendered,

43, 44, 45 For a good tree bringeth not forth corrupt fruit; neither doth a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. For every tree is known by his own fruit. For of thorns men do not gather figs, nor of bramble-bush gather they grapes. A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh.

46 And why call ye Me, LORD, LORD, and do not the things which I say?

For if God be our absolute LORD,-we, His vassals,-He has a right to require our service: we are bound to do what He commands. To cry, "LORD, LORD," and not "to do the things which He says," is to deny, even while we confess Him.

Concerning verses 43 and 44, see the notes on St. Matthew vii. 18 and 19. Verse 45 recurs in St. Matthew xii. 35. Compare verse 46 with St. Matthew vii. 21,— and see the notes there.

47, 48 Whosoever cometh to Me, and heareth My sayings, and doeth them, I will show you to whom he is like: he is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock.

49 But he that heareth, and doeth not, is like a man that without

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a foundation built an house upon the earth; against which the stream did beat vehemently, and immediately it fell; and the ruin of that house was great.

Take notice that there was nothing to distinguish these two houses outwardly. Both were fair to view. The difference lay entirely in the foundation on which they were respectively built;-the one, piled up on the soft and yielding earth, or rather on the shifting and unsteady sand; (which was no foundation at all;) the other, based on the solid rock.

The three preceding verses have been discussed at such length in the notes on St. Matthew,-vii. 24 to 27,-that it shall suffice to refer the Reader back to the earlier Gospel. But it may be worth pointing out that the short clause in verse 48, peculiar to St. Luke,-" and digged deep,"-derives singular illustration from what is the practice to this day, in Palestine. A recent traveller, describing the house of stone in which he lodged, at Nazareth, says, that the owner, "in order to lay the foundations, had dug down to the solid rock,-as is usual throughout the country, on this occasion, to the depth of thirty feet."

And thus ends the "Sermon on the Mount:"-for a short review of which, the Reader is referred to the notes on St. Matthew vii. 27. "Others may grow stale," exclaims pious Leighton, "but this Sermon, never so often read over, is always new. Oh, how full of Divine Doctrine! How plain, and yet how high and excellent; delighting the soul, as a bright day,-clear all along! Our SAVIOUR begins with that great point which all are concerned in, and all naturally someway desirous to know, the Doctrine of Blessedness: and the rest of His Discourse follows out the same argument, directing the way to Happiness in the graces of Purity, Meekness, Mercy."

THE PRAYER.

LORD, we pray Thee that Thy Grace may always prevent and follow us, and make us continually to be given to all good works; through JESUS CHRIST our LORD. Amen.

CHAPTER VII.

1 CHRIST findeth a greater Faith in the Centurion, a Gentile, than in any of the Jews. 10 Healeth his Servant being absent. 11 Raiseth from Death the Widow's Son at Nain. 19 Answereth John's messengers with the declaration of His miracles. 24 Testifieth to the people what opinion He held of John. 30 Inveigheth against the Jews, who, with neither the manners of John nor of JESUS, could be won. 36 And showeth by occasion of Mary Magdalene, how He is a friend to sinners, not to maintain them in sins, but to forgive them their sins, upon their Faith and Repentance.

1 Now when He had ended all His sayings in the audience of the people, He entered into Capernaum.

This was after the "Sermon in the Mount," contained in the preceding Chapter.

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