Imagini ale paginilor

31. Again, the Law permitted a Man in feveral Cafes to give his Wife a Bill of Divorcement, and to put her


32. But I fay unto you, This was not according to the Original Defign of God, but only permitted to the Jews because of the hardnefs of their Hearts, and to prevent greater Evils. From henceforth therefore whofoever fhall put away his Wife, and marry another, excepting only for the caufe of Adultery, fhall be accounted guilty of caufing both her that is put away, and him that fhall afterwards marry her, to commit Adultery.

33. Again, The Law required that Men fhould not forfwear themselves, but religiously perform whatever they had obliged themfelves to by Oath.

34. But I fay unto you, *Swear not at all in common Converfation. Invoke not the Name of God upon light Occafions; but let your Conversation be always fo fincere and true,that your Affirmation may be received as an Oath. And do not think that mincing an Oath, or fwearing by any other thing, will excufe you from the guilt of this Sin. For, fwearing by any of the Creatures, is in effect fwearing by him that made them. Swear not therefore by Heaven; for this is fwearing by the Throne of God, and confequently by God himself.

35. Neither may you fwear by the Earth; for this is fwearing by the Footftool of God, and confequently by God himself. Neither may you fwear by Jerufalem; for this is fwearing by


perifh, and not that whole body fhould be caft into


31 It hath been said, Whosoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorcement.

32 But I fay unto you, that whofoever fhall put away his wife, faving for the caufe of fornication, caufeth her to commit adultery: and whofoever fhall

marry her that is divorced, committeth adultery.

33 Again, ye have heard that it hath been faid by them of old time, Thou shalt not forfwear thy felf, but fhalt perform unto the Lord thine oaths.

34 But I fay unto you, Swear not


all; neither by hea

ven, for it is God's throne:

35 Nor by the earth, for it is his footftool: by Jerufalem, for



* 'Tis evident our Saviour does not here forbid Swearing solemnly to any Truth before a Magistrate, &c.

it is the city of the great King.

36 Neither fhalt thou swear by thy head, because thou canst not make one hair white or black.

37 But let your communication be, Yea, yea; Nay, nay: for whatfoever is more than these, cometh of evil.

38 Ye have heard that it hath been faid, An for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.

39 But I fay unto that ye you, refift not evil: but who

foever fhall fmite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.

38. Again, the Law allowed retaliation of Evil; and that Injury fhould be returned for Injury, and Loss for Lofs. eye

[blocks in formation]

the City and Temple of God, and confequently by God himself.

36. Neither may you fwear by any other lefs Sacred Thing whatfoever; for every fuch Thing is the Creature of God, and you have not any Power over it.

42 Give to him that asketh thee

37. But let your whole Converfation be only bare Affirmations or Denials. For whatever Expreffions are more than fuch, do proceed from fome evil Caufe.

39. But I fay unto you, return not Evil for Evil. But if any Man injure you, and you cannot be relieved by Just and Chriftian Authority; let him rather injure you* ftill, than that you fhould right your felves by Revenge.

40. And if any Man, even in going to Law before just Authority, will be Contentious, and extort from you your Due; fuffer him in fmall Matters to go away with it, and † rather yield him even more, than continue in Contention with him.

41. And if a Man will compel you to do an unreafonable thing, fuch as he has no right to demand; be content to do it, and even more than he demands, rather than return him Violence for his Violence.

42. In all things endeavour to relieve the Neceffities, and to contribute to the Peace and Satisfaction of all Men. To

*Chrift does not here forbid to refift Robbers and Murderers, but is to be understood of smaller Oppreffions.

+ So Fuftin Martyr reads the Words fomewhat more emphatically ; Αφες αυτῶ Η καὶ τὸ ἱμάτιον.


C 3

[blocks in formation]

and from him that

would borrow of
thee, turn not thou


heard that it hath
43 Ye have
been faid, Thou shalt
love thy neighbour,
and hate thine ene-

44 But I fay unto
you, Love your ene-
mies, bless them that
curfe you, do good
to them that hate

you, and pray for
them which despite-
fully ufe you, and
perfecute you:

45 That ye may be the children of your Father which maketh his fun to is in heaven, for he rife on the evil and on the good, and fendeth rain on the just and on the unjuft.

46 For if ye love
them which love
what reward

have ye? do not e-
ven the publicans the

47 And if ye fa-
lute your

only, what do you

more then others? do
not even the publi-
cans fo?

48 Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father, which is in heaven is perfect.


[ocr errors]

1 TAKE heed that

ye do not your alms before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in hea




Of Alms, ver. 1. Of Prayer, ver. 5. Of Fafting, ver. 16. Of the Oppofition between this World and the next,

ver. 19.

2 Therefore when thou doeft thine alms, do not found a trum

pet before thee, as the hypocrites do, in the fynagogues, and in the treets, that they may have glory of men. Verily, I fay unto you, they have their reward.

3 But when thou doeft thy alms,let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth :

[ocr errors]

I.THESE are the Inftances, wherein your Righteousness must exceed the Righteoufnefs of the Jewish Doctors and Pharifees, if ye will attain to the Virtue and Reward of true Chriftians. There are on the other hand feveral Practifes of theirs, which, if ye will be my Difciples, ye muft as carefully avoid. And firft; be careful not to give your Alms openly; out of Oftentation, to be seen and commended of Men; for if ye do, this Praise of Men will be reckoned to you as your Reward, and ye fhall have no Reward in the Kingdom of Heaven.

2. When therefore you do any act of Charity, be not like the hypocritical Pharifees, who strive to do it in the moft open and publick Places, and contrive all poffible ways to proclaim and publish it, that they may be admired and applauded by Men. I tell you affuredly, this fhall be their only Reward, and they must expect no other from God.

3. But when you beftow your Alms, or do any Act of Mercy, (except in fuch Cafes where you may modeftly by your good Example ftir up others to the like Practife, to the greater glory of God and good of Men: Except, I fay, in such, Cafes) chufe to do it with the greatest privacy and fecrecy poffible. C 4

4. And

4. And God who fees perfectly your fecret Piety, which cannot be seen or applauded of Men; and approves the fincerity of your Heart; will at the Refurrection of the Juft, when all the Actions of all Men fhall be made publick, reward you openly before Men and Angels.

5. Again, When you offer up to God your private Prayers, be not like the Hypocritical Pharifees, who choose to fay their pretended private Prayers in

the Streets and Places of common concourse, that they may be seen and applauded by Men. I tell you affuredly, this fhall be their only Reward, and they muft expect no other from God.

6. But when you put up your private Prayers to God, let each one retire alone into his Clofet, and fhut himself up; and God, who heareth your moft fecret Petitions, will openly reward your Piety and Devotion.

7. Only when you pray, do not ufe a multitude of Words and vain Repetitions, as is ufual among the Heathens. For they pray in fuch a Manner, as if God regarded the labour of the outward Action, more than the inward Affection of the Mind, or could be perfuaded and prevailed upon by a multiplicity of Expreffions.

8. Do not therefore imitate them in this. For God, who knoweth all things, knoweth particularly all your Wants, even before ask him.

4 That thine alms may be in fecret:


thy Father which feeth in secret, himself fhall reward thee openly.

5 And when thou prayeft, thou fhalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray nagogues, and in the ftanding in the Sycorners of the streets, that they may be feen of men. Verily I fay unto you, they have

their reward.

6 But thou, when into thy clofet, and thou prayeft, enter when thou haft shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in fecret, and thy Father which seeth in fecret, fhall reward thee openly.

7 But when ye
repetitions, as
pray, ufe not vain
heathen do for they
think that they fhall
be heard for their
much fpeaking.

8 Be not ye there-
fore like unto them:
for your Father
ye have need of, be-
knoweth what things
fore ye ask him.


9. But when you pray, ufe fome fuch fhort Form as this. Almighty God, the Creator and Governour of all things, and the most bountiful Benefactor of thofe who Fear and Obey Thee. Grant that all reasonable Creatures, who are pray ye: Our Father capable of understanding the greatness

9. After this manner therefore


[ocr errors]
« ÎnapoiContinuă »