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he said unto them, I must preach the kingdom of God to other cities also; for therefore am I sent. 44. And he preach

departed, and went into a desert
place and the people sought
him, and came unto him, and
stayed him, that he should not
depart from them. 43. Anded in the synagogues of Galilee.

[See the Reflections on Matt. VIII. v. 14-16.
p. 35, 36.]


A miraculous Draught of Fishes.---The Call of Peter and John.


AND it came to pass, that, as the people pressed upon him to hear the word of God, he stood by the lake of Gennesaret, 2. And saw two ships standing by the lake: but the fishermen were gone out of


them, and were washing their 3. And he entered into one of the ships, which was Simon's, and prayed him that he would thrust out a little from the land. And he sat down, and taught the people out of the ship.

Lord, teach us by thy Spirit. When people were desirous to hear the word of God, thou didst willingly preach it to them in any place; not confining thyself to the temple or synagogues, but sometimes from a mountain, sometimes in a house, sometimes, as here, in a ship. Lord, give us to love, to speak, and to hear thy word every where.

4. Now when he had left | And they came, and filled both speaking, he said unto Simon, the ships, so that they began to Launch out into the deep, and sink. 8. When Simon Peter let down your nets for a draught. saw it, he fell down at Jesus' 5. And Simon answering said knees, saying, Depart from me; unto him, Master, we have toil- for I am a sinful man, O Lord. ed all the night, and have taken 9. For he was astonished, and nothing: nevertheless at thy all that were with him, at the word I will let down the net. draught of the fishes which they 6. And when they had this had taken: done, they inclosed a great multitude of fishes: and their net brake. 7. And they beckoned unto their partners, which were in the other ship, that they should come and help them.

10. And so was also James and John, the sons of Zebedee, which were partners with Simon. And Jesus said unto Simon, Fear not; from henceforth thou shalt catch men.

They who lent thee their ship for this purpose, were no losers even in a temporal view. They were abundantly rewarded for the little time they spent in waiting on thee.

They had toiled all night and taken nothing; so that it was merely to obey thee, that they let down their net any more; as there was not, they thought, the smallest probability of success. When Peter therefore saw such a multitude of fishes gathered into the net, as it were by thy command; having so lately heard thee declaring the glorious truths of the gospel with heavenly wisdom and authority, and now seeing this instance of thy power over the dumb creatures; he was struck with a sense of thy divine glory and reflecting upon thy spotless purity and holiness, and his own guilt and vileness, he fell down at thy knees, and cried out, "Depart from me; "for I am a sinful man, O Lord!" He was surprised that so glorious a person should have any intercourse with him who was so unworthy. And this surprise seems to have been mixt with a certain dread of so holy a presence. But thou wast pleased in thy usual gracious manner to encourage him, saying, "Fear not ;" and to let him know that his former unworthiness should not hinder his being one of thy servants whom thou wast to employ in letting down the net of the gospel to catch men. Which was remarkably fulfilled after thy ascension, when he and his fellow-apostles were made instrumental in gaining at one time three thousand souls. In the mean time, what they had heard and seen made such impression on him and his partners, that so soon as they had brought their ship to land, they forsook all and followed thee.

Blessed Jesus, thou knowest we have reason with Peter to be overawed at thy holy presence, and to cry out, Alas, we are sinful, O holy Lord." But we would not with Peter say, "Depart from us, because


we are sinful." We would rather beseech and implore thy aid, O merciful Son of God, who art infinite in grace as well as in holiness, and who seest our sinfulness and misery, that thou wouldst graciously draw near to

us and save us. Vile and unworthy as we are, thy blood can make us clean, and thy spirit can purify our hearts; and nothing else can do either. Come therefore, Ο gracious, almighty Saviour, to us who have been among the chief of sinners, and who are still, alas! sinful; O come and take away our sinfulness. And if thou hast already begun this blessed work in our hearts, promote it, Lord, every day; and perfect it. And never depart from us, nor bid us depart from thee.

11. And when they had brought their ships to land, they forsook all, and followed him.

We desire just now in heart and affection, with Peter, to forsake all and to follow thee. Farewell world, with all that is called profitable, pleasant, or honourable, under the sun. Welcome cross of Christ. We will henceforth by grace follow our Saviour night and day. Lead on, heavenly conductor, through honour or dishonour, health or sickness, prosperity or adversity, through whatever paths thou seest good. Only do not thou leave us.

And, Lord, be with all whom thou hast called to the work of the ministry. May they, like Peter, be sensible of their sinfulness, and of thy amazing condescension in calling them to partake of thy grace, and to preach it to others. And when the Gospel net is let down, do thou, O Lord, bring souls into it; for thou alone canst do this.

Jesus cleanseth a Leper.

12. And it came to pass, when he was in a certain city, behold, a man full of leprosy; who, seeing Jesus, fell on his face, and besought him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean. 13. And he put forth his hand, and touched him, saying, I will; be thou clean. And immediately the VOL. I.

leprosy departed from him. 14. And he charged him to tell no man: but go and shew thyself to the priest, and offer for thy cleansing, according as Moses commanded, (Lev. xiv. 3, 4, 10.) for a testimony unto them. 15. But so much the more went there a fame abroad of him: and great multitudes came to

gether to hear, and to be heal- | 16. And he withdrew himself ed by him of their infirmities. into the wilderness, and prayed. [See the Reflections on Matt. VII. v. 1—4. p. 34.]


Jesus heals a Paralytic.

17. And it came to pass on a certain day, as he was teaching, that there were Pharisees and doctors of the law sitting by, which were come out of

every town of Galilee, and Judea, and Jerusalem: and the power of the Lord was present to heal them.

Whether these Pharisees and teachers of the law came with an intention to find fault, or whether they were among those who believed in thee with a lower degree of faith; and whether they or the people attending were healed; one thing is evident, that thy power was present to heal some who were there. Oh, that wherever thy Gospel is taught, thy power may be present to heal some precious souls!

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swering said unto them, What
reason ye in your hearts? 23.
Whether is easier,
Whether is easier, to say, Thy
sins be forgiven thee; or to
say, Rise up and walk? 24.
But that ye may know that the
Son of man hath power upon
earth to forgive sins, (he said
unto the sick of the palsy) I say
unto thee, Arise, and take up
thy couch, and go unto thine
house. 25. And immediately
he rose up before them, and
took up that whereon he lay,
and departed to his own house,
glorifying God. 26. And they
were all amazed, and they glo-

18. And, behold, men brought in a bed a man which was taken with a palsy: and they palsy and they sought means to bring him in, and to lay him before him. 19. And when they could not find by what way they might bring him in because of the multitude, they went upon the housetop, and let him down through the tiling, with his couch, into the midst before Jesus. 20. And when he saw their faith, he said unto him, Man, thy sins are forgiven thee. 21. And the scribes and the Pharisees began to reason, saying, Who is this which speaketh blasphemies?rified God, and were filled with Who can forgive sins but God fear, saying, We have seen alone? 22. But when Jesus strange things to-day. perceived their thoughts, he an

[See the Reflections on Matt. IX. v. 1—8. p. 41.]


The Call of Matthew.---Jesus replieth concerning Fasting.

27. And after these things he❘ went forth, and saw a publican, named Levi, sitting at the receipt of custom and he said unto him, Follow me. 28.

And he left all, rose up, and followed him. 29. And Levi made him a great feast in his own house: and there was a great company of publicans and of others that sat down with

them. 30. But their scribes and Pharisees murmured against his disciples, saying, Why do ye eat and drink with publicans and sinners? 31. And Jesus answering, said unto them, They that are whole need not a physician; but they that are sick. 32. I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

[See the Reflections on Matt. IX. v. 9—13. p. 42.]

33. And they said unto him, Why do the disciples of John fast often, and make prayers, and likewise the disciples of the Pharisees; but thine eat and drink? 34. And he said unto them, Can ye make the children of the bride-chamber fast, while the bridegroom is with them? 35. But the days will❘ come, when the bridegroom shall be taken away from them, and then shall they fast in those days. 36. And he spake also a parable nnto them: No man putteth a piece of a new gar


ment upon an old; if otherwise, then both the new maketh a rent, and the piece that was taken out of the new agreeth not with the old. 37. And no man putteth new wine into old bottles; else the new wine will burst the bottles and be spilled, and the bottles shall perish. 38. But new wine must be put into new bottles; and both are preserved. 39. No man also having drunk old wine straightway desireth new; for he saith, The old is better.

[See the Reflections on Matt. IX. v. 14—17. p. 43.]


Jesus vindicates his Disciples, and heals a withered Hand


AND it came to pass on the

second sabbath after the first, that he went through the corn fields; and his disciples

plucked the ears of corn, and did eat, rubbing them in their

hands. 2. And certain of the Pharisees said unto them, Why do ye that which is not lawful

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