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enter in, and Jhall not be able. Luke xiii. 23, 24. q. d. It doth not belong to you to inquire, how many, or how few, shall be saved: But it highly concerneth you all to jtrive, with the utmost Earnestness, to secure your own Salvation, whatever Difficulties may attend it; since many shall fall short of the heavenly Felicity, for Want of using a proper earnest Diligence, or for not applying themselves to ir, till it is too late j which he farther.illustrates in what follows, concerning their Coming and Knocking, when the Door was Jhut.
Again when Judas, one of his Disciples, not Ifcariot, said unto him, Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifejt thyself unto us, and n ot unto the World? Jesus answered and said unto him, If a Man love me, he will keep my Words, and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our Abode with him. John xiv. 22, 23, i. e. I will manifejt myself to those that really love me, and who give the best Proof of it by keeping my Commandments. This therefore is what it principally concerns you to endeavour after, rather than to inquire, wherefore and how far, / will manifest myself to you, rather than to the World.
It appeareth from the several Instances that have been produced, to which more might have been added, that the Lord "Jesus, though he taught, as hath been shewn, with a noble impartial Freedom and a Divine Fortitude, and never declined to declare necessary Truth for Fear of Men, or on Account of any worldly Considerations, yet was not acted by a hot indiscreet Zeal, and therefore was as far from the Character of an Enthusiast, as from that of an Impostor. A calm Prudence, a consummate Wisdom and Discretion, shone in his excellent Discourses, as well as in his whole Deportment; all was wife, well weighed, and in the fittest Season; all excellently suited to answer the great Ends of his Ministry, to promote the Edification of the People, and to lead them in the properest Way to the right Knowledge of the Truth, and to the Practice of their Duty.
On the Parables of our Saviour,
Matthew xiii. 3.
\And he spake many Things unto them in Parables.
ANY one, that impartially considers the Accounts given by the Evangelists, will find Reason to admire the Excellency of our Saviour's Teaching, both with Regard to the Matter and Manner of of it. I have already made several Observations upon this Subject. But there is one Thing that has not yet been particularly insisted upon; and which every one must have observed, that is acquainted with the Writings of the Evangelists, viz.
that that in his Discourses to the People he made frequent Use of Parables. This Part of his Teaching is so remarkable, and the Instructions he gives this Way are so peculiarly excellent, that they well deserve a distinct Consideration.
I shall not spend Time in making a particular Inquiry into the various Significations of the Word Parable. It is known to be derived from a Word that signifies to Compare Things together. It is sometimes used for a wise Sentence or Instruction delivered in a concise proverbial Way and in which a Comparison is generally included. Thus we are told, Luke vi. 39," That he spake a Parable unto them, Can the Blind lead the Blind? Shall they not both fall into, the Ditch? And, Luke iv. 23, Ye will surely fay unto me this Proverb, in the Original it is this Parable, Physician, heal thyself. When he advanced, that Maxim, Not. that which goeth into the Mouth desiieth a Man, but that which cometh out of the Mouth, this defileth a Man: .Peter said unto him, Declare unto. us. this Parable. Matt. xv. 11, j 5. In like Manner we read, Mark iii. 23, $V. That our Lord called the People unto him, and said unto them in Parables, How can Satan cafl out Satan? And, if a Kingdom be divided againfl itself, that Kingdom cannot stand. And, if