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12 Moses therefore gave unto you Circumcision, (not because it is of Moses, but of the Fathers,) and ye on the Sabibath-day xrircumcise a Man.

22.

Yet they scruple not to circumcise on that Day, 49

ago performed one remarkable Work (e), and you Sect. 99.
all to this very Day wonder on Account of it (f), o^v^o
that I should order the Man I cured to carry his
Couch on the Sabbath-day: Yet a little Re- John VII.
flection might convince you, that your Cavil is
very unreasonable, even on your own Principles:
For Moses gave you a Precept, which required Cir-
cumcision; (not that it is originally of Moses his
Institution, but had been formerly established by
the Observation of Abraham, and of the other
Fathers of our Nation, many Ages before Moses
was born, and therefore could not properly be
altered by him (g) ■,) yet you scruple not to cir-
cumcise a Man-Ch\\d on the Sabbath-Day, if it
happen to be the eighth from his Birth. If
[then] to prevent the Violation of Moses his Law
by deferring this sacred Rite, you acknowledge it
fit, that a Man should receive Circumcision on the
Sabbath itself; [why] are you incensed again/1 me,
that by speaking a Word, I have cured a Man,
who was entirely disabled (h), on the Sabbath j as

if

23 If a Man on the Sabbath-day receive Circumcision, that the Law of Moses should not be broken ; are ye angry at me, because I have made a Man every whit whole on the Sabbath-day?

23

(e) I have some Time ago performed one remarkable fVori.] It is plain, the Miracle here referred to, was wrought a Tear and a half before this Feafi. Compare Seel. 46. Note (a), Vol. i. pag. 282.

(f) And you all wonder on Account of it.] I here follow Theophylacl and Be%a, in joining the Words //* Tbjo to the End of this Verse, because it is certain, that in their usual Signification they cannot properly introduce the next; and John xix. 11. (Seel. 188.) may be an Instance of the like Kind. The Prussian Translators render it, Because Moses gave you Circumcision, &c. and the learned Eisner inclines to this Version: (Eisner. Observ. Vol. i. pag. 314, 315.) But tho' lam sensible, * Hxkv sometimes signifies because, (see Gen. xxxviii. 26. Numb. x. 31. and xiv. 43. Septuag. and Hcbr.) I cannot find Jv«tbjo ever so used; and think, if it be retained at the Beginning of the next Verse, it should be rendered, As to this Matter ; which Sense it may perhaps have, in Mat. xiii. 52. xviii. 23. and in a few other Places; and so Grotius takes it here. See Dr. IVhitby on this Place.

(g) Not that it is originally of Moses, &c] An excellent Person, justly celebrated in the Learned World, has lately suggested to me a Thought on these Words, (which I have not met with elsewhere, but have briefly hinted in the Paraphrase,) as to the Reason why our Lord makes this obvious Remark, that Circumcision was older than the Time of Moses. Had Mtsts instituted it, he would probably have ordered it so, as to make it quadrate with his Law relating to the stricl Rest of the Sabbath; but finding it instituted by a previous Covenant,

which his Law could not disannul, (see Gal. iii. 17.) he left it still on the fame Footing.

This Argument will indeed infer, that the strict Sabbatical Rest was not observed in the Patriarchal Age; but yet it might be a Day of extraordinary Devotion, which I apprehend to be proved from Gen. ii. 3.

(b) I have cured a Man entirely.] Our Translation loses much of the Emphasis: The. Words, Saw ecrflf»xoc vym tToitiffa, literally signify, / have healed, or made sound, a whole Man. But the Ambiguity in our Englijh Word whole, rendered such a Version very improper. I therefore thought it necessary, a little to vary the Expression, but the Sense is entirely the fame.

Vol. II. G 0) That

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23.

Reflections on the Meekness we Jhould Jhew under Reproaches*

if it was a more servile Work, to heal, than to wound? or how do you imagine, that I have not JohnVII. powes) when I have thus healed him, to manifest the Perfection of the Cure, by commanding him 24 to carry his Couch (i)? Judre not according 24 Judge not according to these Prejudice,, which the Meanness of my ^^^T'^ Appearance tends to produce; but judge righteous and equitable Judgment; which if you do, you must necessarily acknowledge my Divine Mission to be as evident and certain, as that of Moses himself, to whose Precepts you profess so great

a Regard.

IMPROVEMENT.

John vii. IT E T us learn of our meek and humble Master, to refer the Honour

16,.18. I j of all we know and do, to Divine Instructions communicated to us,.

and Divine Grace working in, and by us; that seeking the Glory of GOD, we may have the surest Evidence, that we are truly his. Let us on all Occasions remember, that Integrity and Uprightness will be a certain Security to us, against dangerous Mistakes in Matters of Religion. If the

Ver. 17. Light we already have, be faithfully improved, we may humbly hope, that more will be given in; nor shall we then fail of convincing Evidence, that the Gospel-Doctrine is os GOD; for the Experience of its Power on our Hearts will check our Passions, and destroy the Prejudices, that would prevent the Truth from taking Place in our Minds.

Let us receive his Doctrine as Divine, and hearken unto Christ as sent of GOD; and whatsoever be the vile Reproaches we may meet with

Ver. 19. from a wicked World, and the malicious Designs it may form against us, let us be resolute and stedfast in the Practice of the Duties he has taught us,, that with Well-doing we may put to Silence the Ignorance of soolifo Men. (iPet.il ic.;

Ver, 2«. Our Lord was reviled as a Damoniack, and a Lunatick; but instead of

rendering Railing for Railing, he replied in the Words of Gentleness and

Ver. 21,-23. Sobriety. So let us endeavour to conquer the Rudeness of those Attacks, we may meet with in his Cause j that we may, if possible, remove the

Ver. 24. Prejudices, so fatal to those that entertain them, and form them to that equitable and impartial Judgment, which would soon turn all their Cavils * against Christ into Admiration, Praise, and Obedience.

(/') That I have not Power, when I have thus healed him, &c] So our Lord himself states the Argument, in a Cafe nearly resembling this, {Mat. ix. 5, 6. Vol. i. pag. 279.) and might probably here intend to insinuate it, tho' in an oblique Manner.

SECT.

They are prejudiced against him^ as htwawg whence he was, 51

SECT. C.

The Jews pass a Variety of Censures on Christ; and the Sanhedrim alarmed by the Regard which some exprejsed towards him, fend Officers to seize him; but Christ openly declares, that their Purposes should not immediately take Effiecl. John VII. 25,—36.

JOH N VII. 25.

'T'HEN said some of them

■*• of Jerusalem, Is not this

be whom they seek to kill?

26 But lo, he speaketh boldly, and they (ay nothing unto him : Do the Rulers know indeed, that this is the yery Christ?

27 Howbeit we know this Man whence he is: but when Christ cometh, no Man knoweth whence he is.

28 Then cried Jesus in

the Temple as he taught,

faying,

John VII. 25.

'I 'HEN, while our Lord was thus discoursing Sect. 100.
-*■ at the Feast of Tabernacles, some of the Inba- <^-*^^j
bitants of Jerusalem, who knew more of the De- Jol,n I1-
signs of the Sanhedrim than others, (ver. 19, 20.)
said, Is not this be, whom they seek an Opportunity
to put to Death? But behold, he is not only 26
come up hither to the Feast, hut speaks openly and
freely in the very Temple itself; and they are so
far from seizing him, that they do not so much as
fay any thing to prohibit him: Do the Riders then
indeed know, they were mistaken in their former
Censures, and are they now persuaded in their
Consciences, that this is really the Messiah? Bat 27
•we have sufficient Reason to conclude, this can-
not be the Cafe j for many of us know this Man,
from whence he is descended, and are sure that he
was born of Joseph's Wife; whereas when the
Messiah comes, no Man will thus know from whence
he is; for he is to be born in a miraculous Way of
a Virgin (a).

Then Jesus, tho' they said this in a private Man- 28
ner to each other, and imagined that he could
not have heard them, as he was teaching in the

Temple,

\a) He is to be born in a miraculous Way of a Virgin.] It is evident from Mat. ii. 4, 5. that the Jews apprehended the Messiah was to be born at Bethlehem; and from a Multitude of other Places, that they knew he was to be a Descendant os David. (Compare ver. 42.) I know not how therefore to account for their saying, that when Christ came, no Mnn. would know whence he is, but by supposing, with Archbishop Ttilotson, {Vol. ii. tag. 454.) that the Words refer to an Expectation they had, that he would be born of a Virgin.—— As for the Notion which "Justin Martyr mentions, that the Messiah should for a while be bid, it seems more modern; and they must put a strange Interpretation on Isa. Irii. 8. Mic. v. 2. and Psal. ex. 4. to draw any such Consequence from them, as Dr. fVhitby, and Mr. LEnfant suppose, they did.

'G a (*) D.

£2 The Sanhedrim send Officers to seize him.

Sect. ioo. Temple, and at some Distance from them, cried tying, Ye both know me,

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29 But I know him, for I am from him, and he hath sent me.

Do you indeed both know me, and know whence I but he that sent me is true,
am (b)? Alas, it is great Rashness and Folly for whom ye know not.
you to assert it j and whatever you may object,
yet it is most certain, that I am not come of myself,
with vain and false Pretences to a Divine Mission,
nor do I want any proper Evidences of it; but be
who sent me is true to all his Promises and Pre-
dictions (c), whom nevertheless, with all your
Boasts, ye know not. But 1 know him in a most
intimate Manner j for I am sprung from him (d)
by a mysterious and divine Generation, in Conse-
quence of which I am infinitely better acquainted
with him, than you, or any mere Creatures, can
be; and he hath sent me among you, as his Em-
bassador, on an Errand of the highest Impor-
tance.

Then they were so provoked by this Claim of
a Divine Original, and by the Charge advanced
against them, as ignorant of that God, in whom
they gloried as so peculiarly their own, that they
sought an Opportunity to seize him; yet God im-
pressed their Minds in such a Manner, that no one
of them would be the first that laid Hands on him:
And they were kept under this visible Restraint,
because bis appointed Hour of Suffering was not
yet come, but he had farther Services in Life to
dispatch, before he was delivered to them.

And many of the People were so much affected with these Discourses, that they secretly believed on him, and said to each other, When the Mejiah comes, will it be possible, he mould do greater Miracles

30 Then they sought to take him: but no Man laid Hands on him, because his Hour was not yet come.

31 And many of the People believed on him, and said, When Christ cometh, will he do more Miracles than

(£) Do you both know me, and know whence lam ?] So the present Bijhop of Durham would render these Words; (fee his Defence, pag. 334.) and it seems necessary, in order to vindicate the Propriety, and indeed the Veracity, of the Reply; unless with Beza and Camerarius we understand it ironically.

(c) Is true to all his Promises and Predictions.] There seems a Reference here, to the Accomplishment of some of the Prophecies, already fulfilled in him, with a chearful Faith in what was yet to come.

(d) lam from him.] I should have chosen to render vnp <u!}u, with him, as I did in the first Edition, to avoid ^Tautology j but I am sensible on farther Reflection, that I want a sufficient Authority for such a Version. I therefore acquiesce in our own: But I see no Occasion to vary any Thing in the Paraphrase; since in either Sense it suggests so strong a Reason for believing, that Christ hath the most intimate Knowledge of the Father.

{e) From

He tells them^ he is going where they shall not find him. 53

than these which this Man racks than these, which this [Jesus] has done here Sect

"at Jerusalem, and over the whole Country?

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bach done?

32 The Pharisees heard, that the People murmured such Things concerning him: and the Pharisees and the Chief Priests sent Officers to take him.

33 Then said Jesus unto them, Yet a little while am I with you, and then I go unto him that sent me.

34 Ye shall seek me, and shall not find me: and where I am, thither ye cannot come.

35 Then said the Jews among themselves, Whither will he go, that we shall not find him? will he go unto the Dispersed among the Gentiles,and teach the Gentiles?

This, however, could not be so privately said, John VIL
but some Information of it was sent to the Pba- V-
rifees, who, when they heard that the People whis-
pered such Things concerning him, were greatly dis-
pleased, and alarmed at it: And the Pharisees, and
the other Members of the grand Sanhedrim, par-
ticularly the Chief Priests, among whom there were
many Sadducees, (fee Acts iv. 1.) sent Officers from
the Chamber in which they held their Council (e),
into the adjacent Court of the Temple, to seize ,
him, as he preached there to the Multitude.

Then Jesussaidto them, as soon as they appear- 33.
ed, I know the Design on which some of you are
come, but God will not permit you immediately
to execute it; for yet a little while longer / am to
continue with you, and [then] I am to go again to
him that sent me. And when I am returned to 34
him, I (hall be entirely out of your Reach; so
that you shall seek me, and wish that you had me
in your Power again, but you shall not find me;
and where I am, or where I shall then, and al-
ways be, you cannot possibly come: Which he said,,
referring to his speedy Exaltation to the Heavenly
World, and to the impotent Malice with which
they should then oppose his triumphant Cause.

But he was not understood in that Sense; 35;
the Jews therefore who were present said among
themselves, Whither is he about to go, that we shall
not find him? Will he leave Judea, and go to. the
Remainders of the Holy Seed, who are dispersed
among the Greeks, and other Nations? and will
he teach them, or the Greeks themselves (f), even

the

(r) From the Chamber in which they held their Council.] See Set*. 24. Note (e). Vol. i. fag. 14.2.

f/J mil he go to the Dispersed amon% the Greeks,, and leach the Greeks ?] By Greets, we are here to understand Idolatrous Gentiles, and not Hellenists, or Jews that used the Greek Language; for these were the Dispersed among them. There is therefore, I think, a Bung in these Words, beyond what Commentators have observed. They insinuate, that if he was to go into foreign Countries, to address himself to the Jews there, who might be supposed, not so well instructed, as those that lived in Judea, and at Jerusalem, he would not be a.b!e to make any Proselytes, even among these; but would be constrained to apply himself to the ignorant and stupid Gentiles, to seek Disciples among them; which to be sure appeared: to these haughty Scorners, one of the most infamous Circumstances that could be imagined,, and most incompatible with the true Messiah.

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