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& Gen, iii. 15.
John viii. 44. &
Rev. xiv. 15.
2 Pet. ii. 1, 2.
Rev. xix. 20:
ver. 50. x Dan. xii. 3.
1 Cor. xv. 42 43, 58.
s Geni: 15:4. good seed are the 2 children of the kingdom, but s the tares
Asthni.are the 2 children of the wicked one ; 39 the enemy that * Joel ili: 25... sowed them is the devil; 'the harvest is the end of the
world; and the reapers are the angels. 40 As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it
be in the end of this world. 41 The Son of man shall send uch. xvill,7; forth his angels, " and they shall gather out of his king
dom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; v ch. iii. 12.
Hev. .12.20: 42 v and shall cast them into a a furnace of fire : "there w ch. viii. 12. shall be b wailing and gnashing of teeth. 43 x Then shall Dan, xii,3,2, the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of
their Father. Who hath ears [c to hear], let him hear.
44 [& Again,] the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure
hid in a field; e the which when a man hath found, he hideth, Phil. lii. 7, 8, and for joy thereof goeth and y selleth all that he hath, and 2 Key i.is. % buyeth that field. z render, sons.
a render, the. b render, the wailing and the gnashing.
e render, which a man found, and hid. rable has an historical importance, having ver. 38. This sublime announcement is over been much in the mouths and writings and above the interpretation of the parable. of the Donatists, who, maintaining that 44.] FIFTH PARABLE. THE HIDDEN the Church is a perfectly holy congrega- TREASURE. Peculiar to Matthew. This tion, denied the applicability of this Scrip- and the following parable are closely conture to convict them of error, seeing that nected, and refer to two distinct classes it is spoken not of the Church, but of the of persons who become possessed of the world : missing the deeper truth which treasure of the Gospel. Notice that these, would have led them to see that, after all, as also the seventh and last, are spoken the world is the Church, only overrun by not to the multitude, but to the disciples. these very tares.
the good seed,
In this parable, a man, labouring (these) are the sons strikingly sets forth perchance for another, or by accident in again the identity of the seed, in its passing, finds a treasure which has been growth, with those who are the plants :'hidden in a field; from joy at having found see above on ver. 19. the sons of it he goes, and selling all he has, buys the the kingdom] not in the same sense as field, thus (by the Jewish law) becoming in ch. viii. 12,--SONS there, by covenant the possessor also of the treasure. Such and external privilege : here, by the ef- biding of treasure is common even now, fectual grace of adoption: the KINGDOM, and was much more common in the East there, in mere paradigm, on this imperfect (see Jer. xli. 8: Job iii. 21: Prov. i. 4). earth : here, in its true accomplishment,
This sets before us the case of a in the new heavens and earth wherein man who unexpectedly, without earnest dwelleth righteousness : but in their state seeking, finds, in some part of the outward among the tares, waiting for the mani. Church, the treasure of true faith and festation of the sons of God.
41. hope and communion with God: and things that offend] generally understood having found this, for joy of it he becomes of those men who give cause of offence, possessor, not of the treasure without the tempters and hinderers of others: it is field (for that the case supposes impos. better to understand it rather of things, sible), but of the field at all hazards, to as well as men, who are afterwards de secure the treasure which is in it: i.e. he signated. 43.] shall shine, literally, possesses himself of the ineans of grace shine out (their light here being enfeebled provided in that branch of the Church, and obscured), as the sun from a cloud. where, to use a common expression, he of their Father, answering to the sons, has “gotten his good :” he makes that
iii. 14, 15: viii. 10, 19.
45 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man seeking goodly pearls: 46 who, when he had found a one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, a Prov. 11, 4: and bought it.
47 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a net, that was cast into the sea, and gathered of every kind : bch. Ixli. 10. 48 which, when it was full, they drew to shore, and sat down, and gathered the good into vessels, but cast the bad away. 49 So shall it be at the end of the world : the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the c ch. Ixv. 39. just, 50 and shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there
field his own. 45, 46.] SIXTA PA. form. Trench instances Nathanael and RABLE. THE PEARL OF GREAT PRICE, the Samaritan woman as examples of the In this parable our Lord sets before us, finders without seeking :--Augustine, as that although in ordinary cases of finding related in his Confessions (we might add “the truth as it is in Jesus,' the buying of St. Paul, see Phil. üi. 7), of the diligent the field is the necessary prelude to be seeker and finder. Compare with this coming duly and properly possessed of it; parable Prov. ii. 3–9, and to see what yet there are cases, and those of a nobler kind of buying is not meant, Isa. lv. 1: kind, where such condition is not neces. ch. xxv. 9, 10. Also see Rev. ii. 18. sary. We have here a merchantman, 47–52.] SEVENTH PARABLE. THE one whose business it is,-on the search DRAW-NET. Peculiar to Matthew. for goodly pearls ; i.e. a man who intel 47.] The net spoken of is a drag, or draw. lectually and spiritually is a seeker of net, drawn over the bottom of the water, truth of the highest kind. “He whoin and permitting nothing to escape it. The this pursuit occupies is a merchantman; leading idea of this parable is the ultimate i. e. one trained, as well as devoted, to separation of the holy and unholy in the business. The search is therefore deter Church, with a view to the selection of minate, discriminate, unremitting. This the former for the master's use. We may case then corresponds to such Christians notice that the fishermen are kept out of only as from youth have been trained up view and never mentioned : the compari. in the way which they should go. In son not extending to them. A net is cast these alone can be the settled habits, the into the sea and gathers of every kind (of effectual self-direction, the convergence to fish: not of things, as mud, weeds, &c., one point of all the powers and tendencies as some suppose); when this is full, it of the soul, which are indicated by the is drawn to shore, and the good collected illustration.” (Knox's Remains, i. 460.) into vessels, while the bad (the legally unBut as the same writer goes on to observe, clean, those out of season, those putrid or even- here there is a discovery, at a parti. maimed) are cast away. This net is the cular time. The person has been seeking, Church gathering from the sea (a common and finding, goodly pearls; what is true, Scripture similitude for nations : see Rev. honest, just, pure, lovely, and of good xvii. 15: Isa. viii. 7: Ps. Ixv.7) of the world, report: but at last he finds one pearl of all kinds (see Rev. vii. 9); and when it great price--the efficacious principle of is full, it is drawn to the bank (the limit inward and spiritual life. We hear of no of the ocean, as the end (literally, consum. emotion, no great joy of heart, as before; mation] is the limit of the world (literally, but the same decision of conduct: he sells age]), and the angels (not the same as the all and buys it. He chooses vital Chris. fishers; for in the parable of the tares tianity, at whatever cost, for his portion. the servants and reapers are clearly disBut here is no field. The pearl is bought tinguished) shall gather out the wicked pure--by itself. It is found, not unex. from among the just, and cast them into pectedly in the course of outward ordi. everlasting punishment. It is plain that nances, with which therefore it would the comparison must not be strained bebecome to the finder inseparably bound yond its limits, as our Lord shews us that up,-but by diligent search, spiritual and the earthly here gives but a faint outline immediate, in its highest and purest of the heavenly. Compare the mere “cast 8 omit.
shall be f wailing and gnashing of teeth. 51 [8 Jesus saith unto them,] Have ye understood all these things? They say unto him, Yeas, h Lord]. 52 Then said he unto them, Therefore every scribe which is i instructed unto the king
dom of heaven is like unto a man that is an householder, a Cant. vii. 13. which bringeth forth out of his treasure d things new and
h omitted in some of the oldest authorities.
i literally, made a disciple : see ch. xxviii. 19. away” of the one, with the fearful anti- Gennesaret :-the field-paths, the stony type of vv. 49, 50. 51, 52.] SOLEMN places, the neglected spots choked with CONCLUSION OF TIIE PARABLES. When wild vegetation, the plots of rich and deep our Lord asks, 'Have ye understood all soil, were all before him. The same imagery these things ?' and they answer, · Yea, prevails in the parable of the tares of the [Lord,]'the reply must be taken as spoken field, and in that of the mustard seed; and from their then standing-point, from which the result of the tilling of the land is assobut little could be seen of that inner and ciated with the leaven in the lump. Then deeper meaning which the Holy Spirit has He quits the sea-shore and enters the since unfolded. And this circumstance house with the disciples. There the link explains the following parabolic remark to the former parable is the exposition of of our Lord: that every scribe (they, in the tares of the field. From the working their study of the Lord's sayings, answer of the land for seed to finding a treasure ing to the then scribes in their study of in a field the transition is easy-from the the Law) who is instructed (discipled), finding without seeking to seeking earnestly enrolled as a disciple and taught as such, and finding, easy again: from the seed to is like an householder (the Great House- the buried treasure, from the treasure to holder being the Lord Himself, compare the pearl,—the treasure of the deep,ch. xxiv. 45) who puts forth from his store again simple and natural. The pearl renew things and old ; i. e. 'ye yourselves, calls the sea; the sea the fishermen with scribes of the Kingdom of Heaven, in their net; the mixed throng lining the structed as ye shall fully be in the mean beach, the great day of separation on the ing of these sayings, are (shall be) like further bank of Time. (2) The seven householders, from your own stores of Parables compose, in their inner depth of knowledge respecting them hereafter bring- connexion, a great united whole, begining out not only your present understand- ning with the first sowing of the Church, ing of them, but ever new and deeper and ending with the consummation. We meanings. And this is true of every must not, as Stier well remarks, seek, with scribe: Every real spiritually-learned scribe Bengel,&c., minutely to apportion the series of the Kingdom of Heaven is able, from prophetically, to various historical periods : the increasing stores of his genuine experi. Those who have done so (see Trench, mental knowledge of the word (not merely p. 142, edn. 4) have shewn caprice and from books or learning, or the Bible itself, inconsistency; and the parable, though but out of his treasure), to bring forth in its manifold depths the light of prothings new and old. The therefore phecy sometimes glimmers, has for its is an expression of consequence, but not a main object to teach, not to foretell. More strong one: answering nearly to our Well, than a general outline, shewn by the prothen. This is perhaps the fittest place minence of those points to which the reto make a few general remarks on this spective parables refer, in the successive wonderful cycle of Parables. We observe, periods of the Church, we can hardly ex(1) How naturally they are evolved from pect to find. But as much we unquesthe objects and associations surrounding tionably do find. The apostolic age was our Lord at the time (see on this the very (1) the greatest of all the seed times of interesting section of Stanley, Sinai and the Church : then (2) sprang up the tares, Palestine, ch. xiij. § 2, p. 420 ff., “On the heresies manifold, and the attempts to root Parables”), He sat in a boat in the sea, them out, almost as pernicious as the hereteaching the people who were on the land. sies themselves : nay, the so-called Church His eye wandered over the rich plain of Catholic was for ages employed in rooting
53 And it came to pass that when Jesus had finished these parables, he departed thence. 54 e And when he was e ch. ii. 23. come into his own country, he taught them in their synagogue, insomuch that they were astonished, and said, Whence hath this man this wisdom, and these mighty works? 55 ? Is not this the carpenter's son? is not his s Luke ili. 23. mother called Mary ? and his brethren, James, and 8 ch. xii. 46.
Luke iii. 23. John vi. 4.
up the wheat also. Notwithstanding this (3) the little seed waxed onward--the kingdoms of the earth came gradually in - (4) the leaven was secretly penetrating and assimilating. Then is it, (5) during the period of dissensions, and sects, and denominations, that here and there by this man and that man the treasure shall be found: then is it, (6) during the increase of secular knowledge, and cultivation of the powers of the intellect, that merchantinen shall seek goodly pearls up and down the world, and many shall find each for himself, the Pearl of Price. And thus we are carried on (7) through all the ages during which the great net has been gathering of every kind, to the solemn day of inspection and separation, which will conclude the present state.
53–58.7 TEACHING, AND REJECTION, AT NAZARETH. Mark vi. 1-6. See Luke iv. 16–29 and notes. 53, 54.] his own country, viz. Nazareth. Perhaps the proceedings of ch. viii 18-ix. 34 are to be inserted between those two verses. In Mark iv. 35, the stilling of the storm and voyage to the Gadarenes are bound to the above parables by what appears a distinct note of sequence : the same day, when the even was come. The teaching was on the Sabbath (Mark). 55. his brethren] It is an enquiry of much interest and some difficulty, who these were. After long examination of the evidence on the subject, I believe that the truth will best be attained by disencumbering the mind in the first place of all à priori considera. tions, and traditions (which last are very inconsistent and uncertain), and fixing the attention on the simple testimony of Scripture itself. I will trace “ His bre. thren," or "the brethren of the Lord,” through the various mentions of them in the N. T., and then state the result; placing at the end of the note the principal traditions on the subject, and the difficulties attending them. (I) The expression “ His brethren,” occurs nine times in the Gospels, and once in the Acts. Of these the three first are in the narratives of the coming of His mother and brethren to speak with Him, Matt. xii. 46: Mark ii. 31: Luke
viii. 19 : the two next are the present passage and its | in Mark vi. 3, where they are mentioned in connexion with His mother and sisters ; the four others are in John ii. 12; vii. 3, 5, 10; in the first of which He and his mother and brethren and disciples are related to bave gone down to Capernaum : and in the three last His brethren are introduced as urging Him to shew Himself to the world, and it is stated that they did not believe on Him. The last is in Acts i. 14, where we read that the Apostles . continued in prayer and supplication with the women, and with Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren. In another place, 1 Cor. ix. 5, Paul mentions "the other Apostles, and the brethren of the Lord, and Cephas.” Such are all the places where the meaning is undoubted, that persons called, and being in some usual sense, brethren of the Lord, are mentioned. (Besides these the Lord, Himself uses the words “ my brethren," Matt. xxviii. 10; John xx. 17, but apparently with a wider meaning, including at least the eleven Apostles in the term, as He does in Matt. xii. 49, and parallels.) Now I would observe (a) that in all the mentions of them in the Gospels, except those in John vii., they are in connexion with His mother: the same being the case in Acts i. 14. (6) That it is nowhere asserted or implied that any of them were of the number of the Twelve; but from John vii. 5, following upon vi. 70 (by “after these things,” vii. 1), they are excluded from that number. St. John would certainly not have used the words “for neither did his brethren beliere on him," had any of them believed on Him at that time (see this substantiated in note there):-and again in Acts i. 14, by being mentioned after the Apostles have been enumerated by name, and after the mother of Jesus, they are indicated at that time also to have been separate from the twelve, although, then certainly believing on Him. (c) Their names, as stated here and in Mark vi. 3, were JACOB (JAMES), JOSEPH, (or JosES), SIMON, and Judas, all of them among the commonest of Jewish names. Of JOSEPH (or JosEs ;-cer
k Joses, and Simon, and Judas? 56 And his sisters, are
they not all with us? Whence then hath this man all h ch. xi. 6. ' these things ? 57 And they h were offended 1 in him. But
k read, Joseph : some MSS. have John. I render, at. tainly not the Joseph Barnabas Justus of we know His mother to have been ; but Acts i. 23: see ib. ver. 21) and SIMON that His own saying, where he distin(not Simon Cananæus or Zelotes : see guishes His relations according to the flesh above) we know from Scripture nothing. from His disciples (ch. xii. 50 and parallels), Of the two others we have the following seems to sanction that inference. (4) That traces-(d) JACOB (JAMES) appears in the 'nothing is said from which it can be inapostolic narrative as the Lord's brother, ferred whether Joseph had been married Gal. i. 19: he is there called an apostle. before he appears in the Gospel history ;This however determines nothing as to or again, whether these brethren were, his having been among the Twelve (which according to the flesh, older or younger is a very different matter); for Paul and than our Lord. (6) That the silence of Barnabas are called apostles, Acts xiv. the Scripture narrative leaves it free for (4) 14, and Paul always calls himself such. Christians to believe these to have been See also Rom. xvi. 7; 1 Thess. ii. 7 com real (younger) brethren and sisters of our pared with i. 1. That he is identical with Lord, without incurring any imputation the James of Gal. ii. 9, whom Paul men- of unsoundness of belief as to His miracu. tions with Cephas and John as having lous conception. That such an imputation given him and Barnabas the right hand has been cast, is no credit to the logical of fellowship, fourteen years after the correctness of those who have made it, visit in ch. i. 19, does not appear for who set down that, because this view has certain, but has been pretty generally been taken by impugners of the great assumed. (See this whole subject dis Truth just mentioned, therefore it eventucussed in the Introduction to the Epistle of ally leads, or may fairly be used towards James.) (e) The JUDE who has left an the denial of it; for no attempt is made to epistle, and was brother of James, not only shew its connexion with such a concludoes not call himself an apostle, ver. 1 (assion. The fact is, that the two matters, neither does James, nor indeed John him the miraculous conception of the Lord self, so that this cannot be urged), but in Jesus by the Holy Ghost, and the sub. ver. 17 (see note there) seems to draw sequent virginity of His mother, are Es. a distinction between himself and the SENTIALLY AND ENTIRELY DISTINCT; see Apostles. Whether this indicates that the note on Matt. i. 25 : see also respecting a James and Jude, the authors of the Epis supposed difficulty attending this view, tles, were two of these brethren of the note on John xix. 27. (II) I will now Lord, is uncertain ; but it may at least be state the principal traditionary views rementioned in the course of our enquiry. specting the brethren of the Lord. (1)
I shall now state the result of that That they were all sons of Alphæus (or enquiry, which has been based on Scrip Clopas) and Mary the sister of the mother ture testimony only. (1) That there were of our Lord ; and so cousins of Jesus, four persons known as “ His brethren," or and called agreeably to Jewish usage His " the brethren of the Lord,” NOT OF THE brothers. This is the view taken in a NUMBER OF THE TWELVE. (2) That these remarkable fragment of Papias, adopted persons are found in all places (with the by Jerome, and very generally reccived in above exception) where their names occur ancient and modern times. But it seems in the Gospels, in immediate connexion with to me that a comparison of the Scripture Mary, the mother of the Lord. (It is a testimonies cited above will prove it un. strange phænomenon in argument, that it tenable. One at least of the sons of this should have been maintained by an ortho. Alphæus was an apostle, of the number of dox writer, that my inference from this the twelve, viz. James the son of Alphæus proves too much, because Joseph is here (see all the lists, on ch. x. 3); which (see introduced as His father : as if a mistake above) would exclude him from the num. of the Jews with regard to a supernatural ber of the brethren of the Lord. But even fact, which they could not know, inva- if one of the four could be thus detached lidated their cognizance of a natural fact (which, from John vii. 5, I cannot believe), which they knew full well.] (3) That not it is generally assumed that “ Judas of a word is any where dropped to prevent James ” (so in the Greek) (see Luke's two ns from inferring that these brethren were lists as above) is Jude the brother of His relations in the same literal sense as James ; and if so, this would be another