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Section I. The Nativity.-Ch. i. ii.

The lineage of Jesus from Abraham. His conception and birth. The visit

of the magians. The judgment of the chief priests and scribes concerning

the place where the Messiah should be born. Joseph's retreat into Egypt.

The murder of the infants. Herod's death. Joseph's return to Galilee, 537

SECTION II. The Baptism.-Ch. iii. iy.

John sent to baptize and announce the Messiah. Jesus baptized by him,

and attested by heaven. Tempted by the devil in the desert. Returns to

Galilee. Calls Peter, Andrew, and the two sons of Zebedee. Gives inti-

mation to the people of the reign of God. Performs miraculous cures,


Section III, The Sermon on the Mount.—Ch. v, vi. vii.

Who are happy. The disciples of Jesus bound to be exemplary. He came

to ratify the divine law, much impaired by the traditions of the Pharisees.
I. In respect of extent. Exemplified in what concerns-1. murder; 2. adul-
tery; 3. divorce; 4. oaths; 5. retaliation; 6. the love of our neighbor.
II. In respect of motive. Where the end is applause, the virtue is de-
stroyed. Exemplified-1. in almsgiving ; 2. in prayer; 3. in fasting. Did
we estimate the stability of the things in heaven compared with the things
on earth, we should pursue the former with ardor, and prove superior to
all anxiety about the latter. The service of Mammon incompatible with
the service of God. Admonitions to charitableness in judging others :

Section V. The Charge to the Apostles.-Ch. ix. 35, etc. x. xi. 1.

Jesus selects twelve whom he names apostles. Commissions them to an-

nounce the reign of heaven to his countrymen the Jews, empowering them

to perform miraculous cures. To secure them against solicitude, he assures

them of the care of Providence, and of the illuminations of the Spirit. He

warns them by his own example of what they may expect from men;

against the dread of whom he fortifies them by the consideration of the

omnipotence of God. His cause will occasion divisions in families. By

all genuine disciples he will be preferred to every other object. The small.

est services performed from love to him, shall not be unrewarded, 549

Section VI. The Character of the Times.-Ch. xi. 2, etc. xii.

John's message to Jesus. The testimony of Jesus concerning John. The

people's opinion of both. The aggravated guilt of Chorazin, Bethsaida,
and Capernaum, who had enjoyed the ministry of Jesus, and seen his mir-
acles, yet remained impenitent. The wisdom of God in adapting his new
dispensation to the simple and unlearned, who are invited by Jesus to come
under his guidance. The doctrine of the Pharisees concerning the Sab-
bath confuted-1. from Scripture; 2. from reason; 3. from their own
practice. The manner wherein they account for his expelling demons ex-

posed. The danger of detracting from the Holy Spirit. Miracles not in-

tended for gratifying curiosity or captiousness. "The obduracy and folly of

the age strongly condemned by the repentance of the Ninevites, and the

zeal for wisdom manifested by the Queen of Sheba. The misimprovement

of benefits begets insensibility. Who are considered by Jesus as his near-

est relatives,


SECTION VII. Parables.-Ch. xii. 1–53.

The parable of the sower. The reason why Jesus taught in parables. The

explanation of the parable. The parable of the darnel. Of the grain of

mustard seed. Of the leaven. The explanation of the parable of the dar-

nel. The parable of the hidden treasure. Of the precious pearl. Of the

sweep-net, with its explanation,


Section VIII. The People trice fed in the Desert.

Ch. xii. 54, etc. xiv. xv. xvi. 1--12.

Jesus despised by his fellow-citizens on account of his parentage; is inform-

ed how John the Baptist was killed by Herod; retires to a desert; is fol-
lowed by more than 5000 persons, whom he there feeds miraculously ;
makes his disciples embark for the other side of the lake ; follows them in
the night walking on the water; entering the bark, stills the storm; many,
in the country of Gennesaret cured by touching his garment; his disciples
vindicated from the charge brought by the Pharisees, who, by their tradi-
tions, annulled the law of God. Moral pollution proceeds only from vice.
A demon expelled from the daughter of a woman who, though a Gentile,
showed extraordinary faith. In a mountain, near the Sea of Galilee, many
cures performed, and apwards of 4000 miraculously fed. A sign, such as

Section X. The Rich Man's Application.-Ch. xix. xx. 1–16.

What it is that justifies divorce. Who they are that should abstain from

marriage. The people encouraged to bring children to Jesus : what must

be done to obtain eternal life ; how far endeavors after perfection will car-

ry us. Riches a great obstruction to our admission into the kingdom.

The reward of those who abandon any thing for Jesus. God gives gratui-

tously much beyond his promise. Illustrated by the parable of the laborers

in the vineyard,


Section XI. The Entry into Jerusalem.- Ch. xx. 17, etc. XXI. XX11. 1–14.

Jesus, travelling to Jerusalem, foretells his sufferings and resurrection. The

application of Zebedee's wife in behalf of her sons. Jesus asserts the ne-

cessity of humility in all who would obtain admission into his kingdom.

Gives sight to two blind men. Rides into Jerusalem on an ass, attended by

a multitude shouting for joy. Drives the traffickers out of the temple :

Where he heals the blind and the lame. Devotes the barren fig-tree.

Affirms the power of faith. Silences the chief priests and elders, who

question him about his authority. Contrasts their character with that of

the heathen, in the parable of the man who had two sons. Paints their in-

gratitude to God in the parable of the husbandman who ill-treated and kil-

led their landlord's messengers. Predicts the rejection of the Jews and the

admission of the Gentiles into the church. This further illustrated in the

parable of the marriage of the king's son,


Section XIII. The Prophecy on Mount Olivet.-Ch. xxiv. xxv.

The destruction of the temple foretold. The calamities by which it will be

preceded. The signs that the Judge is at hand. The time of the judgment
known only to God. Men will be suprised by it as formerly by the food.
The necessity of activity and vigilance illustrated-by the example of ser-

vants who expect their master's return; by the parable of the ten virgins ;

by the parable of the talents. Account of the procedure at the last judg-


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Section. XIV. The last Supper.-Ch. xxvi. 1–56.

The rulers consult together about the method of apprehending Jesus. A fe-

male disciple anoints his head. Judas bargains with the chief priests to de-

liver him into their hands. Jesus eats the passover with his disciples. Ac-

quaints them of the treachery of one of them. Institutes the commemora-

tion of his death. Foretells their deserting, and Peter's disowning him.

His deep distress in the garden. He is seized by an armed multitude con-

ducted by Judas. Rebukes an apostle for having recourse to the sword, 577

Section XV. The Crucifixion.-Ch. xxvi. 57, etc. xxvii. 1–56.

Jesus is brought before the Sanhedrim. Accused of blasphemy, and con-

demned. Is denied by Peter. Judas, finding that he is condemned, repents

his perfidy. Restores the price; and in despair kills himself. Jesus is de-

livered bound to the Roman procurator. Before whom he is accused by the

chief priests and elders. Pilate, perceiving that the accusation proceeded

from envy, and being, warned by his wife not to do aught against Jesus,

tries in vain to save him, by the artifice of granting him to the prayer of

the multitude, who were wont to obtain the release of a prisoner at the pass-

over. The multitude, instigated by their rulers, demand the release of

Barabbas, and the crucifixion of Jesus. Pilate, after washing his hands, to

testify he was guiltless of his blood, consents to gratify them. Jesus is

scourged, and mocked, and crucified between two malefactors. Is insulted

on the cross by persons of all ranks, fellow-sufferers not excepted. His death

attended with a preternatural darkness, and other prodigies, which strike

the Roman centurion and guards with terror.


SECTION XVI. The Resurrection.- Ch. XXVII. 57, etc. XXVIII.

The body of Jesus given to Joseph of Arimathea, who deposits it in his own

sepulchre. The sepulchre secured and watched. His resurrection announ-

ced at the sepulchre to some pious women by an angel. Jesus afterwards

appears to them. The guard bribed by the Jewish rulers to say that the

body was stolen when they were asleep. Jesus appears to the disciples in

Galilee. And commissions them to teach all nations,


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