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whom, though he hath escaped the sea, yet vengeance suffereth not to live. And he shook
5 Thus exactly fulfilling our Lord's off the beast into the fire, prediction. (Mark xvi. 17.) and felt no harm. How- 6 This change of sentiment we find beit they looked when he also chap. xiv. 11. should have swollen, or fallen down dead suddenly: but after they had looked a great while, and saw no harm come to him, they changed their minds, and said that he was a god. In the same quarters were possessions of the chief man of the island, whose name was Publius; who received us, and lodged us three days courteously. And it came to pass, that the father of Publius lay sick of a fever and of a bloody flux : to whom Paul entered in, and prayed, and laid his hands on him, and healed him. So when this was done, others also, which had diseases in the island, came, and were healed: who also honoured us with many honours; and when we departed, they laded us with such things as Figures were carved upon the were necessary.
11 And after ship to distinguish it. These were three months we departed in images of false deities, who were a ship of Alexandria, which supposed to preside over the sea. had wintered in the isle, whose sign was Castor and Pollux. And landing at Syracuse, we tarried there three days. 13 And from thence we fetched 13 There were many Christian enne a compass, and came to Rhe- verts congregated at Puteoli*. gium : and after one day the south wind blew, and we came the next day to Puteoli : where we found brethren, and were desired to tarry with them seven days: and so we went toward Rome. And from thence, when the brethren heard of us, they came to meet us as far as Appii forum t, and the Three taverns : whom when Paul saw, he thanked God, and took courage.
16 And when we 16 This privilege was accorded, procame to Rome, the centurion bably in consequence of the repredelivered the prisoners to the sentation made by Festus to Czesar. captain of the guard : but Paul was suffered to dwell by him. self with a soldier that kept him. And it came to pass, that after three days Paul called the chief of the Jews together : and when they were come together, he said unto them, Men and brethren, though I have committed nothing against the people, or customs of our fathers, yet was I delivered prisoner joy is, that “whom the Lord loveth, He chasteneth.” Afflictions are sent to the good, in mercy to their souls.
Puteoli was a large seaport near Naples. + Appii Forum was fifty miles distant from Rome ; the Three Taverns, thirty. The mention of these minute particulars is not unimportant, since they verify the history.
from Jerusalem into the hands of the Romans. · Who, when they had examined me, would have let me go, because there was no cause of death in me. But when the Jews spake against it, I was constrained to appeal unto Cæsar ; not that I had ought to accuse my nation of. For this cause therefore have I called for you, to see you, and to speak with you : because that for the hope of Israel I am bound with this chain. And they said unto him, We neither received letters out of Judæa concerning thee, neither any of the brethren that came shewed or spake any harm of thee. But we desire to hear of thee what thou thinkest: for as concerning this sect, we know that every where it is 23 Thus when the ministers of Christ spoken against. And when
And wben would nou persuade men, their best they had appointed bim a wisdom is the written word. day, there came many to him into his lodging; to whom he expounded and testified the kingdom of God, persuading them concerning Jesus, both out of the law of Moses, and out of the prophets, from morning till
24 What minister of the Gospel evening. 24 And some be
shall be discouraged, if his testimony lieved the things which were seem sometimes fruitless—when he spoken, and some believed calls to mind, that there were those, not. And when they agreed whom even St. Paul persuaded not?
25 Is. vi. 9. Our Lord himself apnot among themselves, they plies this passage to wilful unbelief. departed, after that Paul had spoken one word, Well spake the Holy Ghost by Esaias the prophet unto our fathers, saying, Go unto this people, and say, Hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand ; and seeing ye shall see, and not perceive : for the heart of this people is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes have they closed ; Jest they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them. Be it known therefore unto you, that the salvation of God is sent unto the Gentiles, and that they will hear it. And when he had said these words the Jews departed, and had great reasoning among themselves. And Paul dwelt two whole years in his own hired house, and received all that
31 By the kingdom of God is meant came in unto him, " preach- —the kingdom of grace here ; the ing the kingdom of God, and kingdom of glory hereafter. How teaching those things which exemplary, St. Paul's enduring courconcern the Lord Jesus Christ, Emperor Nero did not take place
age! The persecution under the with all confidence, no man till the year following. forbidding him. This wonderful history ends A.D. 63 ; about twenty-seven years after St. Paul's conversion. During the Apostle's residence at Rome at this time, he wrote his Epistles to the Ephesians, the Philippians, the Colossians, and Philemon.
The Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Komans.
JAN. 2, MAY 2, August 31. · Paul, a servant of Jesus
1 St. Paul took not his office ti] Christ, called to be an apostle,
“called and separated" thereto. Se separated unto the gospel of the Church admits none to minister, God, (which he had promised but those who are duly called and afore by his prophets in the separated to the holy work of ever holy scriptures,) concerning for the office.
gelizing, and are found duly fitted his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh ; and declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead : by whom we have received grace and apostleship, for obedience to the faith among all nations, for his name : among whom are ye also the called of Jesus
7 This verse must be read as if it Christ: 7 to all that be in followed the first verse, and the inRome, beloved of God, called termediate verses be considered as to be saints : Grace to you
parenthetical. and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ, * First, I thank my God
& Well may ministers feel satisfacthrough Jesus Christ for you tion in the spiritual honour of their all, that your faith is spoken people. of throughout the whole 9 Prayer for his people is a minis world. ģ For God is my
ter's most grateful, as well as cod
stant work. witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of his Son, that without ceasing I make mention of you always in my prayers ; making request, if by any means now at length I might have a prosperous journey by the will of God to come unto you. For I long to see you, that I may impart unto you some spiritual gift, to the end ye may be established ; 12 that is, that I may Gospel was well met by the faith of
12 St. Paul's faith in offering the be comforted together with his people in accepting it. you by the mutual faith both
“hindered.” of you and me would not have you ignorant, brethren, that oftentimes I pur
13 Now I
13 « Let," or
16 For I am
posed to come unto you, (but was let hitherto,) that I might have some fruit among you also, even as among other Gentiles. "I am debtor both to the
14 By “the Greeks,” he means here Greeks, and to the barba- the more polished and learned among rians ; both to the wise, and the Gentiles; by the barbarians, the
ruder and unlearned. to the unwise. So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also.
16 Does religion subject you to connot ashamed of the gospel of tempt or mockery! Fear not, neiChrist: for it is the power of ther be ashamed! Look to the end, God unto salvation to every lowly and despised follower of the
when shame will overtake, not the one that believeth; to the
cross, but the proud and envious Jew first, and also to the despiser of it. Greek. For therein is the 17 If the just live before God, not righteousness of God re- by their holy deeds, but by faith, vealed from faith to faith : as
how shall we escape, if we be faith
less! it is written, The just shall live by faith. 16 For the
18 Alas ! for those who, professing
the truth, lead unrighteous lives ! wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead ; so that they are without excuse : because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was dark
22 Vain is all knowledge which is ened. 22 Professing them
not sanctified by the grace of God. selves to be wise, they be- Even these, wise in their own conceit, came fools, and changed the shewed their wisdom to be foolishness glory of the uncorruptible for they bowed themselves to the
idols which theirown hands had made. God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves : who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is
26 Idolatry and unclean practices blessed for ever, Amen. always went hand in hand. Men 26 For this cause God gave became at once degraded when they them up unto vile affections: changed the true God for false gods'; for even their women did
“ changing the truth of God into a change the natural use into lie.” Their degradation was judithat which is against nature:
cial. and likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet. And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient ; being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness ; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity ; whisperers, backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: 3 who knowing 32 Thus adding sin to sin-adding the judgment of God, that a defiance of that very divine judg. they which commit such ment in which they believed. things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.
What a painful picture of the vanity of mere human wisdom! What an awful proof, that false principles ever produce practical evil, bringing dishonour upon the name of God, and misery upon man! What a reproof to those vain ones who think reason can suffice without grace!
Jan. 3, MAY 3, Sept. 1. CIRCUMCISION, morning. THEREFORE thou art in
This, as appears from ver. 17, is excusable, Oman, whoso- addressed to a Jew, who, in his harsh ever thou art that judgest:
judgment of the ignorant heathen, for wherein thou judgest
was blind to his own heavier sin. another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things. But we are sure that the judgment of God is according to truth against them which commit such things. And thinkest thou this, O man, that judgest them which do such things, and doest the same, that thou shalt escape the judgment of God?
4 Or de- 4 The merciful object of God in his spisest thou the riches of his forbearance toward you and me and goodness and forbearance and all men, is to give us time to repent longsuffering; not knowing and be saved. that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance? But after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God; 6 According to his deeds--, for who will render to every them. No merit can attach to them.