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1: The first Sabbath - So the Jews reckoned their Sabbaths,
from the passover to pentecost; the first, second, third, and
so on, till the seventh Sabbath (after the second day.) This
immediately preceded pentecost, which was the fiftieth day after
the second day of unleavened bread.(Mt 12:1,Mr 2:23).
2: Why do ye - St. Matthew and Mark represent the Pharisees as
proposing the question to our Lord himself. It was afterward,
probably, they proposed it to his disciples.
4: (1Sa 21:6).
6: (Mt 12:9,Mr 3:1).
9: To save life or to kill - He just then probably saw the design
to kill him rising in their hearts.
12: In the prayer of God - The phrase is singular and emphatical,
to imply an extraordinary and sublime devotion.(Mr 3:13).
13: (Mt 10:2,Mr 3:14,Ac 1:13).
15: Simon called Zelotes - Full of zeal; otherwise called Simon
17: On a plain - At the foot of the mountain.
20: In the following verses our Lord, in the audience of his
newly - chosen disciples, and of the multitude, repeats, standing
on the plain, many remarkable passages of the sermon he had
before delivered, sitting on the mount.
He here again pronounces the poor and the hungry, the
mourners, and the persecuted, happy; and represents as miserable
those who are rich, and full, and joyous, and applauded:
because generally prosperity is a sweet poison, and affliction
a healing, though bitter medicine. Let the thought reconcile
us to adversity, and awaken our caution when the world smiles
upon us; when a plentiful table is spread before us, and our
cup is running over; when our spirits are gay; and we hear
(what nature loves) our own praise from men.
Happy are ye poor - The word seems here to be taken literally:
ye who have left al] for me.(Mt 5:3).
24: Miserable are ye rich - If ye have received or sought your
consolation or happiness therein.
25: Full - Of meat and drink, and worldly goods.
That laugh - That are of a light trifling spirit.
26: Wo to you when all men shall speak well of you - But who
will believe this?
27: But I say to you that hear - Hitherto our Lord had spoken
only to particular sorts of persons: now he begins speaking
to all in general. (Mt 5:44).
29: To him that smiteth thee on the cheek - Taketh away thy cloak
- These seem to be proverbial expressions, to signify an invasion
of the tenderest points of honour and property. Offer the other
- Forbid not thy coat - That is, rather yield to his repeating the
affront or injury, than gratify resentment in righting your self;
in any method not becoming Christian love.(Mt 5:39).
30: Give to every one - Friend or enemy, what thou canst spare,
and he really wants: and of him that taketh away thy goods - By
borrowing, if he be insolvent, ask them not again.(Mt 5:42).
31: (Mt 7:12).
32: It is greatly observable, our Lord has so little regard for
one of the highest instances of natural virtue, namely, the
returning love for love, that he does not account it even to
deserve thanks. For even sinners, saith he, do the same: men
who do not regard God at all. Therefore he may do this, who
has not taken one step in Christianity.
37: (Mt 7:1).
38: Into your bosom - Alluding to the mantles the Jews wore, into
which a large quantity of corn might be received. With the same
measure that ye mete with, it shall be measured to you again
- Amazing goodness! So we are permitted even to carve for
ourselves! We ourselves are, as it were, to tell God how much
mercy he shall show us! And can we be content with less than
the very largest measure? Give then to man, what thou designest
to receive of God.
39: He spake a parable - Our Lord sometimes used parables when he
knew plain and open declarations would too much inflame the
passions of his hearers. It is for this reason he uses this
parable, Can the blind lead the blind? - Can the scribes teach
this way, which they know not themselves? Will not they and
their scholars perish together? Can they make their disciples
any better than themselves? But as for those who will be my
disciples, they shall be all taught of God; who will enable them
to come to the measure of the stature of the fulness of their
Master. Be not ye like their disciples, censuring others, and
not amending yourselves.(Mt 15:14).
40: (Mt 10:24,Joh 15:20).
41: (Mt 7:3).
46: And why call ye me Lord, Lord - What will fair professions
avail, without a life answerable thereto?(Mt 7:21).
47: (Mt 7:24).