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The Scribes and Pharisees seek a sign. 85 tion: because they said, He hath an unclean spirit 6

The Scribes and Pharisees seek a sign. They

are reproved : but that of Jonas is given.

EITHER make the tree good, and his fruit good; or else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt: for the tree is known by his fruit. O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things ? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things; and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things. But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.

Then certain of the scribes and of the Pharisees answered, saying, Master, we would see a sign from thee. But he answered and said unto them, An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given to it but the sign of the prophet Jonas: for as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly, so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights

Matt. xii. 22-32. Mark iii. 20—30. Luke viji. 1-3. xi. 14-23.

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86 Christ's Disciples his nearest Relations. in the heart of the earth. The men of Nineveh shall rise in judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: because they repented at the preaching of Jonas; and, behold, a greater than Jonas is here. The queen of the south shall rise up in the judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: for she came from the uttermost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and, behold, a greater than Solomon is here. When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest, and findeth none. Then he saith, I will return into my house from whence I came out, and when he is come, he findeth it empty, swept, and garnished. Then goeth he, and taketh with himself seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter in and dwell there and the last state of that man is worse than the first.

Everi so shall it be also unto this wicked generation'. Christ regards his true Disciples as his nearest

Relations. And it came to pass, as he spake these things, a certain woman of the company lifted up her voice, and said unto him, Blessed is the womb that bare thee, and the paps which thou hast sucked. But he said, Yea ? Matt. xii. 33-45. Luke xi. 16. 24-26. 29–36.

Christ teaches by Parables.

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rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it.

While he yet talked to the people, behold, there came then his mother and his brethren, and could not come at him for the press, and, standing without, they sent unto him, calling him, desiring to speak with him. And the multitude sat about him. Then one said unto him, Behold, thy mother and thy brethren stand without, desiring to speak with thee. But he answered and said unto him that told him, Who is my mother ? and who are my brethren? And he looked round about on them which sat about him, and he stretched forth his hand toward his disciples, and said, Behold my mother and my brethren! For whosoever sliall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother, and sister, and mother 8. Christ teaches by Parables. The Parable of the

Sower, The same day went Jesus out of the house, and sat by the sea side, and began again to teach. And great multitudes were gathered together unto him, and were come to him out of every city, so that he went into a ship, and sat in the sea; and the whole mul88 The Parable of the Sower. titude stood on the shore. And he spake unto them, and taught them many things by parables, and said unto them in his doctrine, Hearken; behold, there went out a sower to sow his seed ; and it came to pass, as he sowed, some fell by the way side, and it was trodden down, and the fowls of the air came and devoured it up. And some fell on stony ground, where it had not much earth; and immediately it sprang up, because it had no depth of earth : but as soon as it was sprung up, when the sun was up, it was scorched; and because it had no root and lacked moisture, it withered away. And some fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up with it and choked it, and it yielded no fruit. But other fell on good ground, and sprang up and increased; and brought forth fruit, some thirty, and some sixty, and some an hundred fold. And when he had said these things, he cried, He that hath ears to bear, let him hear. And the disciples came, and said unto him, Why speakest thou unto them in parables ? He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given. Therefore speak I to them in parables : because they seeing see not ; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand. And in them is fulfilled the Christ explains the Parable of the Sower. 89 prophecy of Esaias, which saith, By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and shall not perceive: for this people's heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed ; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them. But blessed are your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear. For verily I say unto you, That many prophets and righteous men have desired to see those things which ye see, and have not seen them; and to hear those things which ye hear, and have not heard them!

8 Matt. xii. 46–50. Mark iii. 31-35. Luke xi. 27, 28.

Christ explains to his Disciples the Paralle of

the Sower. And when he was alone, they that were about him with the twelve asked him, saying, What might this parable be? And he said unto them, Know ye not this parable? and how then will ye know all parables? Hear ye therefore the parable of the sower. Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. The sower soweth the word. And those by the way side, where the word is sown, are they that

Matt. xiii. 1-17. Mark iv. 1-9. Luke viii. 4-8.

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