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saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
THEN Jesus was led by the spirit into the wilderness,* to be tempted of the devil. 2 And when he had fasted forty days and forty 3 nights, he was afterward hungry. And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be 4 made bread. But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the 5 mouth of God. Then the devil taketh him
up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pin6 nacle of the temple, and saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down : for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee; and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy 7 foot against a stone. Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shall not tempt the 8 Lord thy God. Again the devil taketh him up into an exceedingly high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, 9 and the glory of them; and saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt 10 fall down and worship me. Then Jesus saith Satan: for it is
unto him, Get thee hence,
That is, solitary and retired places.
written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy 11 God, and him only shalt thou serve. Then the devil leaveth him, and behold, angels came and ministered unto him.*
12 Now, when Jesus had heard that John was
cast into prison, he departed into Galilee. 13 And leaving Nazareth, he came and dwelt in Capernaum, which is upon the sea coast, in the borders of Zabulon, and Nephthalim:† 14 That it might be fulfilled which was spoken 15 by Isaiah the prophet, saying, The land of Zabulon, and the land of Nephthalim, by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, Galilee of the Gen16 tiles: The people which sat in darkness, saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death, light is sprung up.
From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.‡
* Some critics suppose, that by this account is to be understood no more than this, that Christ was under strong temptations to exert his miraculous ability for his own pleasure and honor, and to direct his supernatural power to the purposes of ambition and wealth, &c. but that he resisted every suggestion of this kind, making it his great and constant business to do the will of GoD, and employing the power given him to the honor and glory of GoD, and the good of men :-And is not this the true meaning? Thus figuratively and allegorically, probably, we are to understand the account of Adam's and Job's temptations.
In the distant parts of Judea, bordering on the territory of heathens, where the people were more ignorant than in other parts of the holy land.
Daniel prophesied of a new kingdom, a new dispensation of religion; and the Jews were at this time expecting the Messiah.
And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren (Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother) casting a net into the sea: 19 for they were fishermen. And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers 20 of men. And they straightway left their nets, 21 and followed him. And going on thence
he saw other two brethren, James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, in a ship with Zebedee their father, mending their nets ;* 22 and he called them, and they immediately left the ship and their father, and followed him.
And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God,† and healing all manner of sickness, and all manner of disease, 24 among the people. And his fame went throughout all Syria:‡ and they brought unto him all sick people who were taken with divers diseases and torments, and those who were possessed with devils, and those who were lunatics, and those who had the palsy; and he 25 healed them. And there followed him great multitudes of people, from Galilee, and from Decapolis, and from Jerusalem, and from Judea, and from the country beyond Jordan.
* James and John then were not very poor. That is, the peculiar doctrines of Christianity. Syria borders on Judea on the north; and is sometimes used to include the whole country of Judea.
In the original, demons, by which was meant the spirits of departed men, and who were supposed to possess and afflict people. Those who were deranged in mind and melancholy were thought to be thus possessed.
AND seeing this great multitude, he went up to a mountain and when he was seated, 2 his disciples came unto him: And he opened 3 his mouth, and taught them, saying, Blessed
are the poor in spirit: for their's is the king4 dom of heaven.† Blessed are they that mourn: 5 for they shall be comforted. Blessed are the 6 meek for they shall inherit the earth. Bles
sed are they who do hunger and thirst after 7 righteousness; for they shall be filled. Blessed are the merciful for they shall obtain 8 mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart for 9 they shall see God. Blessed are the peace
makers for they shall be called the children 10 of God. Blessed are they who are persecut
ed for righteousness sake: for their's is the 11 kingdom of heaven. Blessed are ye when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely,
In this and the two following chapters, are the purest and most comprehensive moral precepts. Here is a system of morals, at once simple, sublime, and perfect. Here are no dogmas of speculation; all is practical, and adapted to the meanest capacity, yet elevated. This address of Christ of the importance of moral and spiritual attainments, was probably designed to suppress the worldly views of the people respecting the Messiah.
That is, my subjects are not the ambitious, the pow erful, and the proud; but the humble, meek, merciful, forgiving, and such as desire moral improvement. Certainly, the kingdom of Christ is not of this world," for the gospel pronounces the meek, humble, pious, pacific, &e. happy or blessed, and those only.
12 for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceedingly glad for great is your reward in heaven: for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salt, cd? it is thenceforth good for nothing but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of 14 men.* Ye are the light of the world. A city 15 that is set on an hill, cannot be hid. Neither
do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth 16 light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.
Think not that I am come to destroy the law or the prophets : I am not come to des18 troy, but to ratify.† For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be 19 fulfilled.t Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven; but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great 20 in the kingdom of heaven. For I say unto
But for the truly wise and good, the world could not be preserved-it would be so corrupt that it would be necessary to destroy it as before the flood.
tReferring to the precepts of the moral law, which are of eternal obligation. The traditions of the Pharisees, by which the spirit of the law was in many instances set aside, are likewise here probably alluded to by Christ, by way of contrast with the moral precepts.