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" thrust it into my side: and be || by adoption and grace, may daily 6 not faithless, but believing." be renewed by thy Holy Spirit, . And Thomas answered and said | through the same our Lord Jesus unto him, “ My Lord and my Christ, who liyeth and reigneth

God.” Jesus saith unto him, with thee and the same Spirit, “ Thomas, because thou hast ever one God, world without “ seen me, thou hast believed : end. Amen. “ blessed are they that have not

“ seen, and yet have believed.” The Epistle. Heb. i. 1. (e) 30. And many other signs truly did

God, who at, sundry times and Jesus in the presence of his dis

in divers manners spake in time ciples, which are not written in

past unto the fathers by the 31. this book. But these are written,

prophets, hath in these last days 2. that ye might believe that Jesus

spoken unto us by his Son, whom is the Christ, the Son of God;

he hath appointed (f heir of all and that believing ye might have

things, ($) by whom also he made life through his name.

theworlds; who being the bright- 3.

ness of his glory, and the exTHE NATIVITY OF CHRIST,

press (b) image of his person, and

upholding all things by the word called CHRISTMAS Day.

of his power, when he had by The Collect.

himself purged our sins, sat down ALMIGHTY God, who hast given on the right hand of the Majesty us thy only-begotten Son to take on high; being made so much our nature upon him, and as at better than the angels, as he hath this time to be born of a pure by (i) inheritance obtained a more Virgin; Grant that we, being re- excellent name than they. For 5. generate, and made thy children unto which of the angels said he at

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(e) The object of this Epistle is to shew (6)Image." So Coloss. i. 15. our Sathe great superiority of Christ and the viour is called “the image of the invisible Christian dispensation ; and it accord. “ God.” In Wisd. vi. 26. wisdom is ingly begins with an account of Christ's called “the brightness of the everlasting preeminence.

light, the unspotted mirror of the 1.3. Heir." So Coloss. i. 15. St. Paul “ power of God, and the image of his

calls our Saviour “the first-born of every « goodness." " The image of his per"creature,” that is, “ as much above all " son,” is probably nothing more than "created beings as the first-born is con a figurative mode of intimating that he “ sidered above his brethren.” As God was exactly like him in all perfections. In also says, in the prophetic part of Ps. Gen. i. 27. God is said to have created lxxxix: 28.“ I will make him, my first-born “ man in his own image." But nothing " higher than the kings of the earth.” more probably was meant than that he

(s)“By whom," &c. Soin Coloss.i. 16, was made to resemble him in purity and St. Paul says, “ By him were all things goodness. According to John i. 18.

created that are in heaven, and that are and v. 37.—1 Tim. vi. 16,--and i John “ in earth, visible and invisible, whether v. 12. no man hath seen God at any " they be thrones, or dominions, or time. “ principalities, or powers: all things (i)“ By inheritance," i.e. by “sonship," “ were created by him, and for him.” by being, according to the expression in So Eph. iii. 9. he says, “ God created Il verse 2. " appointed heir of aīl things," “ all things by Jesus Christ,And || by being called “ the Son of God.” see Jobin i. 3. the Gospel for this day.

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5. any time, “ Thou art (k) my Son, | “ Lord, in the beginning hast

o this day have I begotten thee?” “ laid the foundation of the And again, “I will (1) be to « earth; and the heavens are the

« him a Father, and he shall 66 works of thine hands: They 11. 6. “ be to me a Son?” And again, “ shall perish, but thou remain

when he bringeth in the first « est; and they all shall wax old, begotten into the world, he saith, " as doth a garment; and as a 12.

“ And(m)let alltheangels of God os vesture shalt thou fold them 7. 66 worship him.” And of the || " up, and they shall be changed :

angels he saith, “Who (n)maketh 66 but thou art the same, and

6 his angels spirits, and his mi. “ thy years shall not fail.” 8. “ nisters a flame of fire.” But

unto the Son he saith, “ (0) Thy " throne, O God, is for ever

The Gospel. John i. 1. " and ever: a sceptre of righte Inthe (9) beginning was the Word,

66 ousness is the sceptre of thy and the Word was with God, and 9. “ kingdom: Thou hast loved the Word was (r) God. The 2.

righteousness, and hated ini. same was in the beginning with 66 quity; therefore God, even || God, All things were made by 3. “ thy God, hath anointed thee him; and without him was not

56 with the oil of gladness above || any thing made that was made. 10. “ thy fellows." And,“ () Thou, || In him was life; and the life was 4.

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(&) - Thou art my Son." This is from never again under his descendants; and Ps.ü . and is therefore a confirmation the line of Solomon has ceased for that the prophecy there related to our centuries to have any dominion : but Saviour. The same may be collected the throne of Christ is established for from Acts xiii. 33. and Heb. v. 5. evermore; he has built God a spiritual

(1) I will be,” &c. This is probably house, the Church of Christ; and he is from 1 Chron. xvii. 13. which, though it settled in the house and kingdom of God might be thought to apply to Solomon, for ever. His dominion, according to was perhaps intended to apply to our Dan.vii. 14. “ is an everlasting dominion, Saviour only. God ordered Nathan to “ which shall not pass away, and his kingforbid David from building him an house, “ dom that which shall not be destroyed.” but to tell him that he would raise up his (m) “ Let all the angels,” &c. This seed after him, which should be of his is supposed to be taken from Ps. xcvii. 7. sons, and establish his kingdom. “ He (m) “ Maketh,” &c. This is from (said the word of God)" shall build Ps. civ. 4. * me a house, and I will establish his (0) « Thy throne,” &c. This is from “ throne for ever. I will be his Father, Ps. xlv. 7, 8. “ and he shall be my Son. And I will () “Thou, Lord.” This is from « not take my mercy away from him, as Ps. cii. 25 to 27. “ I took it from him that was before (9) “In the beginning with God." In " thee," (viz. Saul); " but I will settle Gen.i. 1. " in the beginning God created," « him in mine house and in my kingd m the word translated “God” is in the for ever; and his throne shall be esta plural number, but joined with a verb in « blished for evermore." This seems the singular; and it is so used 30 times much more applicable to the spiritual in the short history of the creation there kingdom of our Saviour, (who was, ac given : so that Moses might understand, cording to the flesh, of the sons of Da that though there was only one God, yet vid), than of Solomon. Ten of the tribes | in that one God were distinct existencies. revolted from Solomon's son, and were (-) See ante 12. note (d).

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s, the light of men. And the light

Saint Stephen's Day. shineth (s) in darkness; and the

The Collect. darkness comprehended it not. || Grant, O Lord, that in all our 4. There was a man sent from God,

sufferings here upon earth, for : whose name was (t) John. The the testimony of thy truth, we same came for a witness, to bear may stedfastly look up to heaven,

witness of the Light, that all inen and by faith behold the glory that 8. through him might believe. He

shall be revealed; and being was not that Light, but was sent filled with the Holy Ghost, may

to bear witness of that Light. learn to love and bless our per9. That was the true Light, which ||

secutors, by the example of thy lighteth every man that cometh

first Martyr, Saint Stephen, who 10. into the world. He was in the prayed for his murderers to thee,

world, and the world was made O blessed Jesus, who standest at | by him, and the world knew him the right hand of God to succour 11. not. He came unto his (u) own, all those that suffer for thee, our 19. and his own received him not. But

only Mediator and Advocate. as many as received him, to them Amen. gave he power to become the (Then shall follow the Collect of the Nativity : sons of God, even to them that which shall be said continually until New

Year's Eve.] 13. believe on his name: which were

born (x), not of blood, nor of the For the Epistle. Acts vii. 55.

will of the flesh, nor of the will STEPHEN, being full of the Holy 14. of man, but of God. And the

Ghost, looked up stedfastly into Word was made (y) Alesh, and heaven, and saw the glory of dwelt among us, (and we be God, and Jesus standing on the held his glory, the glory as of right hand of God, and said, the only begotten of the Father,) Behold, I see the heavens opened, 56. full of grace and truth.

and the Son of man standing on

5.3. ("Shineth in darkness," that is, “ in as St. Paul expresses it, Rom. viii. 15.

"a generation which would not see, which “ received the Spirit of adoption, where-
* did not open its eyes, whose foolish “ by we cry, Abba, Father ;" that is,
" hearts" (according to Rom. i. 21.) whereby we are entitled to call God
" weredarkened." The reason is assigned, our Father, and become his sons. So
John m. 19, 20. “Light is come into the Gal.iv.6. St. Paul says, “ because ye are
" world, and men loved darkness rather “ sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of
" than light, because their deeds were evil. “ his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba,
" For every one that doeth evil hateth .Father.” And St. John says, “ Be.
" the light, neither cometh to the light, “ hold what manner of love the Fa-
" lest his deeds should be reproved."

" ther hath bestowed on us, that we See post, 2 Cor. iv. 3, 4.

“ should be called the sons of God.” 16 () “John,” that is, not the Evangelist,

i John iii. And in 1 John v. 1. he but the Baptist, the messenger who was

says, “ whosoever believeth that Jesus

«' is the Christ, is born of God.” See to prepare the way for the Messiah. See ante 32. Matt. xi. 2. & 34.—John i.

also i John ii. 29.-1 Peter i. 3. and 19. b. 11. (u) “ His own," i. e. the Jews.

(y) “ Flesh,” i.e. in the person of 0.14. 5.13. (*) “ Born,” &c. that is, receiving a || Jesus Christ. “ spiritual, not a natural birth : having,

04

23.

57. the right hand of God. Then || of Zacharias son of Barachias,

they cried out with a loud voice, whom ye slew between the

and stopped their ears, and ran temple and the altar. Verily I say 58. upon him with one accord, and unto you, All these things shall

cast him out of the city, and come upon this (a) generation. stoned him: and the witnesses O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that laid down their clothes at a young killest the prophets, and stonest

man's feet, whose name was them which are sent unto thee, 59. Saul(z). And they stoned Stephen, how often would I have gathered

calling upon God, and saying, thy children together, even as a 60. “ Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.' hen gathereth her chickens under

And he kneeled down, and cried her wings, and ye would not! with a loud voice, “ Lord, lay not || Behold, your house is left unto “ this sin to their charge !” And you desolate. For I say unto you, when he had said this, he fell asleep. Ye shall not see me henceforth,

till (6) ye shall say, “ Blessed The Gospel. Matt. xxiii. 34. " is he that cometh in the name BEHOLD, I'send unto you pro.

66 of the Lord.” phets, and wise men, and scribes : and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them Saint John the Evangelist's Day. shall ye scourge in your synagogues, and persecute them from

The Colle&. city to city : that upon you may MERCIFUL Lord, we beseech come all the righteous blood shed thee to cast thy bright beams of upon the earth, from the blood light upon thy Church, that it of righteous Abel unto the blood being enlightened by the doctrine

v. 59. (2)“ Saul.” The same person who was geance should come upon the generation

afterwards miraculously converted, and is of men then living ; and independently
known by the name of St. Paul. In Acts of those who perished at the time of the
viii. 1. which immediately follows this destruction of Jerusalem, which happened
account, it is said, “ and Saul was con in less than forty years after this pro.
," senting unto his death." In the account | phecy, immense numbers perished in the
St. Paul gives of his conversion, (A&ts || interim. Our Saviour stated (Matt. xxiv.
xxii. 20. he states, that in his trance, in 7.) that “ Nation should rise against na-
the Temple, he said unto the Lord, | « tion, and kingdom against kingdom,
.when the blood of thy martyr Stephen 6 and that there should be famines, and
Ik was shed, I also was standing by, and “ pestilences, and earthquakes in divers
- « consenting unto his death, and kept “ places ;” but that those were only
“ the raiment of them that slew him.” the beginning of sorrows." And ac-
The Acts are supposed to have been cordingly in the interim, between this
written by St. Luke ; and he was with prophecy and the destruction of Jerusa-
St. Paul 12 years, from A. D. 46 to lem, as many as 100,000 are said to have
A. D. 58; so that he is likely to be perished in Palestine by wars and civil
correct as to what he writes about commotions. 2 Newt. on Proph. 146.
St. Paul. In 1 Cor. xv. 9. St. Paul says 5 Wats. Theol. Tr. 121.3. See ante 30.
of himself, that he was not meet to | (note on Luke xxi. 32.)
be an apostle, because he persecuted the (6) “ Till ye shall say,” i. e. (per- q.
Church of God.

haps) till this shall be the general cry, 0. 36. (a) "This generation.” This is there. || - Blessed,” &c.

fore another assertion, that some signalven

of thy blessed Apostle and Evan- || which we have seen and heard, celist Saint John, may so walk in | declare we unto you, that ye the light of thy truth, that it may also may have fellowship with at length attain to the light of us : and truly our fellowship is everlasting life, through Jesus with the Father, and with his Christ our Lord. Amen.

Son Jesus Christ. And these 4.

things write we unto you, that The Epistle. 1 John i. 1.

your joy may be full. This then 5.

is the message which we have That which was (c) from the heard of him, and declare unto beginning, which we have heard, you, that God is light, and in which we (d) have seen with our him is no darkness at all. If we 6. eyes, which we have looked say that we have fellowship upon, and our hands have hand with him, and walk in darkness, we 2. led of the (e) word of life; (for the lie, and do not the truth : But 7. life was manifested, and we have if we walk in the (8) light, as he seen it, and bear witness, and is in the light, we have fellowshew unto you that eternal life ship (b) one with another, and the which was with the Father, and blood of Jesus Christ his Son 3. was manifested unto us ;) that (i) cleanseth us from all sin. If we 8.

1. ()“ From the beginning,” i.e. (per. “ the Son of God, God dwelleth in him,

haps) determined upon from the earliest “ and he in God.” It is perhaps upon times, from the fall of Adam.

the same ground that St. Paul calls the (D)“ Have seen,” &c. It was natural converts 6 the Temple of God," i Cor. for St.John to press strongly upon the per iii. 16, 17.-vi. 19. --2 Cor. vi. 16. sons to whom he writes what had pressed

(8) “ Light,” i. e. perfect purity. v. 7. strongly upon his own mind, and what

Darkness," i.e. impurity. could make a stronger impression on any one's mind than the conviction of his own

(b) For “one with another," the King's 0.7. senses? His faith had for its foundation

MSS. reads “ with him," which seems what he had himself seen, &c. that for more agreeable to the context. which he had the assurance of his own (i) “Cleanseth us." So Rev.i. 5. Jesus v. 7. Te-aght.

Christ is said to have washed us from our
B.I. ()“The Word of Life,” that is,“our sins in his “ own blood.” And accord-

" Saviour Jesus Christ.He is also de ing to the language of our Liturgy, he
noted by the expressions in the next made “ by his one oblation of himself
verse " the Life,” and “ that Eternal “ once offered, a full, perfect, and suffi.
"Life which was with the Father.” So 6 cient sacrifice, oblation and satisfac-
St. John says in his Gospel, John i. 14. “ tion for the sins of the whole world."
"The word was made flesh” (that is in By requiring so great a sacrifice, God
the person of Jesus Christ), “and dwelt has shewn his utter detestation of sin ;
" among us.”

and if we refuse to perform the terms
* Fellowship," i.e. Participation. upon which forgiveness of sins is offered
St. Johnexpresses this fellowship elsewhere unto us, (by endeavouring to lead godly
in very strong terms. Thus, i John iii. lives, by repenting of the sins we have
24." He that keepeth his" (viz. God's) committed, and by feeling and expressing
" commandments, dwelleth in him” (viz. thankfulness to God for his mercies),
God), " and he" (viz. God) in “ him.” what are we to expect? We are assured
So i John iv. 12, 13. “ If we love by the author of the Epistle to the
" one another, God dwelleth in us, and Hebrews, x. 26. that “ there remaineth
" his love is perfected in us;" and v.15. “ no more sacrifice for sin, but a certain
" Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is Il “ fearful looking for of judgment, and

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