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smiters, and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: I hid not my face from shame and spitting. For the Lord God will help me, therefore fhall I not be confounded: therefore have I set face like a flint, and I know that I fhall not be ashamed. He is my near that justifieth me, who will contend with me? let us stand together; who is mine adversary? let him come near to me. Behold, the Lord God will help me; who is he that fhall condemn me? Lo, they all fhall wax old as a garment: the moth shall eat them up. *Who is among you that feareth the Lord, that obeyeth the voice of his fervant, that walketh in darknefs, and hath no light? let him truft in the Name of the Lord, and stay upon his God. Behold, all ye that kindle a fire, that compafs yourselves about with sparks; walk in the light of your fire, and in the fparks that ye have kindled. This fhall ye have of mine hand, ye shall lie down in forrow.

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Who is among you that feareth the Lord, &c. i.e. Whof ever feareth God, and obeyeth the Gospel of Jefus Chrift: if they be under grievous troubles; let not their afflictions drive them to defpair: but let them fix a firm dependance on God, for protection and de

The Gofpel. S. Mark 15. 1.

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ND ftraightway in the morning the chief priests held a confultation with the elders and scribes, and the whole council, and bound Jefus, and carried him away, and delivered him to Pilate. And Pilate asked him, Art thou the king of the Jews? And he answering, faid unto him, Thou fayeft it. And the chief priests accused him of many things: but he answered nothing., And Pilate asked him again, faying, Anfwereft thou nothing? Behold, how many things they witnefs against thee. But Jefus yet answered nothing: fo that Pilate marvelled. Now at that feaft he released unto them one prifoner, whomfoever they defired. And there was one named Barabbas, which lay bound with them that had made infurrection with him, who had committed murder in the infurrection. And the multitude crying aloud, began to defire S 2

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liverance.

+ And delivered him to Pilate. Thus the Jevs delivered up our Lord to the Romans, and they for that Sin, were, themfelves, afterwards given up into the hands of the Romans,

But Pilate answered

him to do as he had ever done unto them. them, faving, Will ye that I release unto you the king of the Jews? ($for he knew that the chief priests had delivered him for envy.) But the chief priests moved the people, that he should rather relcafe Barabbas unto them. And Pilate answered, and faid again unto them, What will ye then that I fhall do unto him whom ye call the king of the Jews? And they cried out again, Crucify him. Then Pilate said unto them, Why, what evil hath he done? And they cried out the more exceedingly, Crucify him. And fo Pilate willing to content the people, released Barabbas unto them, ‡ and delivered Jefus, when he had scourged him, to be crucified. And the foldiers led him away into the hall, called Pretorium; and they call together the whole band. And they clothed him with purple, and platted a crown of thorns, and put it about his head; and began to falute him, Hail, king of the Jews. And they fmote him on the head with a reed, and did fpit upon him, and bowing their knees, worshipped him. And when they had mocked him, they took off the purple from him, and put his own clothes on him, and led him out to crucify him. And they compel one Simon a Cyrenian, who paffed by, coming out of the country, the father of Alexander and Rufus, to bear his crofs. And they bring him unto the place | Golgotha, which is, being interpreted, the place of a fcull. And they gave him to drink wine mingled with myrrh; but he received it not. And when they had crucified him, they parted his garments, cafting lots upon them,

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. For he knew that the Chief Priests had delivered him for Envy. What pity it was that he who was fo well acquainted with the motive of their accufations against Jefus, fhould yield to the execution of their malicious defigns! But, alas! when ambition and views of worldly intereft have taken poffellion of a Man's heart, he is too often apt to facrifice to them, confcience, integrity, and every good inclination.

And delivered Jefus, when be bad fcourged him, c. The Romans ufually scourged the criminals whom they condemned to be crucified. This was the reafon of Pilate's proceeding in that refpect. Thus cuftom contri

buted to increase our Lord's fuffering. But, whilft our hearts fympathize with our afflicted Saviour, blessed be God who hath taught us that by those stripes we are bealed.

↑ The Father of Alexander and Rufus. Thefe were two noted Men amongst the firit Chriftians. See Aas xix. 33. Rom. xvi. 13.

Golgotha probably fo called from the criminals bones which lay fcattered there. And for this reason perhaps, (as well as his being crucified betwixt two Thieves) Chrift might be faid to be numbered among f the Tranfgreffors.

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what every man should take. *And it was the third hour, and ? they crucified him. And the fuperfcription of his accufation was written over, THE KING OF THE JEWS. And with him they crucify two thieves, the one on his right hand, and the other on his left. And the Scripture was fulfilled, which faith, And he was numbered with the tranfgreffors. And they that paffed by, railed on him, wagging their heads, and faying, Ah, thou that deftroyeft the temple, and buildest it in three days, fave thyfelf, and come down from the crofs. Likewife alfo the chief priefts mocking, faid among themfelves, with the fcribes, He faved others, hinfelf he cannot fave. Let Chrift the King of Ifrael descend now from the crofs, that we may fee and believe. And they that were crucified with him, reviled him. And when the fixth hour was come, there was darkness over the whole land, until the ninth hour. And at the ninth hour Jefus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama fabachthani? which is, being interpreted, My God, my God, why haft thou forfaken me? And fome of them that ftood by, when they heard it, faid, Behold, he calleth Elias. And one ran, and filled a fpunge full of vinegar, and put it on a reed, and gave him to drink, faying, Let alone let us fee whether Elias will come to take him down. And Jefus cried with a loud voice, and gave up the ghoft. And the vail of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom. And when the centurion which stood over against him, faw that he fo cried out, and gave up the ghost, he said, Truly this man was the Son of God.

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And it was the third hour, and they crucifiea kim. That is, it was the third Jewish hour when he was fixed. to the cross-which is about our nine o'clock in the morning.

And when the fixth hour was come there was darknefs over all the land until the ninth bour. That is from twelve till three in the afternoon. That this Darkness was not occafioned by a natural Eclipfe is evident, because it was full Moon then. A natural Eclipfe never happening, except when the Moon is about the change. Befides, the darknefs, occafioned by Eclipfes of the

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Sun, never continue above twelve or fifteen minutes. Wherefore it must have been produced by a divine power, in a manner we are not able to explain. To this we may add that Phlegon the Aftronomer, and Freedman of Adrian (as he is cited by Origen) in treating of the 4th year of the 202d Olympiad the 19th of Tibe rius, (fuppofed to be the year in which our Lord was crucified,) tells us," That the greatest Eclipfe of the "Sun that ever was known, happened then; for the "day was fo turned into night that the ftars in the hea "vens were seen."

Wednesday before Eafter.
The Epifle. Hebr. 9. 16..

*WHE

HERE. a teftament is, there muft alfo of neceffity be the death of the teftator: for a teftament is of force after men are dead; otherwife it is of no ftrength at all whilft the teftator liveth. Whereupon, neither the firft teftament was dedicated without blood: for when Mofes had fpoken every precept to all the people, according to the law, he took the blood of calves, and of goats, with water and fcarlet wool, and hyffop, and fprinkled both the book and all the people, faying, This is the blood of the teftament, which God hath enjoined unto you. . Moreover, he fprinkled likewife with blood both the tabernacle, and all the veffels of the miniftry. And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without fhedding of blood is no remiffion. It was therefore neceffary that the patterns of things in the heavens fhould be purified with thefe; but the heavenly things themfelves with better facrifices than thefe. § For Chrift is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the prefence of God for us, nor yet that he fhould offer himself often, as the high priest entereth into the holy płace every year with blood of others: for then must he often have fuffered fince the foundation of the world; but now once, in the end of the world, hath he appeared to put away fin by the facrifice of himself. And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the Judgment: fo Chrift was once

*Where a Teftament is, there must also of neceffity be the Death of the Teftator. St. Paul in order to prove "the neceffity of Chrift's Death for the establishment of the Gospel, or new Covenant (as it is called) cites as a parallel cafe, what was well known amongst mankind in their worldly affairs, viz. that a common Will or Teftament was of no force till the Death of the Teftator. To the fame purpofe he fpoke that the Old Teftament, or first Covenant which was given by Mofes was dedicated by fprinkling it with the blood of flain calves and goats, but that the New Teftament was purified with far better Sacrifices than thefe, even with the pre

cious blood of the Son of God.

§ For Chrift is not entered, c. As the Jewish High Priest entered once a year into the Holy of Holies (the most facred part of the Temple) to make atonement for the Sins of the people, with the blood of flain beafts: fo Chrift has entered, once for all, into the Holy Places of Heaven, there to appear in the prefence of God; where, by the offering of his own blood, he hath obtained eternal redemption for us; of which the aforementioned ceremony, under the law, was but a Figurative representation.

offered to bear the fins of many; and unto them that look for him, fhall he appear the fecond time without fin unto falvation. The Gofpel. S. Luke 22. .

No

OW the feast of unleavened bread drew nigh, which is called *the Paffover. And the chief priefts and fcribes fought, how they might kill him; for they feared the people. Then entered Satan into Judas furnamed Ifcariot, being of the number of the twelve. And he went his way, and communed with the chief priests and captains how he might betray him unto them. And they were glad, and covenanted to give him money. And he promised, and fought opportunity to betray him unto them, in the absence of the multitude. Then came the day of unleavened bread, when the paffover must be killed. And he fent Peter, and John, faying, Go, and prepare us the paffover, that we may eat. And they said unto him, Where wilt thou that we prepare ? And he faid unto them, Behold, when ye are entered into the city, there fhall a man meet you, bearing a pitcher of water; follow him into the houfe where he entereth in. And ye shall fay unto the good-man of the house, The Mafter faith unto thee, Where is the guest-chamber where I fhall eat the paffover with my difciples? And he fhall fhew you a large upper room furnifhed; there make ready. And they went, and found as he had faid unto them: and they made ready the paffover. And when the hour was come, he fat down, and the twelve apoftles with him. and he faid unto them, With defire have I defired to eat this paffover with you before I fuffer. For I fay unto you, I will not any more eat thereof, until it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God. And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and faid, Take this, and divide it among yourfelves. For I fay unto you, I will not drink of the fruit of the

The Pafover, was fo called, and obferved, in commemoration of the Ifraelites departure out of Egypt, when the destroying Angel which put to death the firstborn of the Egyptians, pafed ove the houfes of the If raelites without entering therein, Exod. xii. 11. Hence

alfo the Lamb which was killed on thefe occafions was called the Paffover; which was eaten with unleavened bread. This was a reprefentatian of Chrift the true pafchal Lamb who was facrified for us.

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