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for my name's sake, shall re-1 CHAPTER XX. ceive a hundred fold, and shall FOR the kingdom of heavinherit everlasting life.
I en is like unto a man that 30 But many that are first is a householder, which went out shall be last, and the last shall early in the morning to hire labe first.
borers into his vineyard. should also receive a distinguished 3. The unspeakable value of heavrecompense, both here and hereafter. /en, as contrasted with even the highMark (10: 30) and Luke (18: 30) est dignity on earth. make mention of “this present time,"'4. The reasonableness of self-deniand of the world to come.” Mark, al, for the sake of Christ. Heaven in the verse just referred to, says, will make amends for all losses and “ with persecutions.” That is, he sorrows. must expect persecutions in this
CHAPTER XX. world, as well as a measure of bliss; though, as my disciple, he will have
1. For, &c. The parable which
now follows, is immediately connected my favor and be happy, yet he must make calculations for not being ex
with the preceding conversation, and empt, while on earth, from trials on
ought to be read in immediate conaccount of the cause of Christ.
nection with it. Many persons fail to 30. But many, &c. Having spoken
perceive the design of the parable, in so freely of the honors and happiness which would be bestowed at the
from the conversation of which it is a consummation of his dispensation, the
part. The Saviour had just cautioned Saviour subjoined a proverbial saying,
the disciples against an undue self
esteem and undue expectations in the design of which appears to be, in this connection, to check any undue
regard to honors in the heavenly self-estimation that might possibly
kingdom, by letting them know that arise in their hearts. He cautioned
it would not be a matter of course
that those who on earth might be rethem, that some, who are now held in high esteem, will not have a propor
garded as first, either on account of tionate dignity hereafter; while others,
| an earlier entrance upon his service, who receive but little honor, if any,
or any more honorable distinction here, will be blessed with distin
which they might have here acquired, guished honor hereafter. The disci
would have a corresponding honora
ble distinction in heaven. He wished ples ought not to fix their hearts upon
now to show them, that the honors honors; for, as to these, the distinctions which exist on earth will not
and bliss of heaven would be bestowed continue in heaven. The distin
in a manner that would signally dis
play the goodness and bountiful disguished here may occupy a low place there ; the disesteemed here may oc
position of God. He proceeded to
illustrate this matter by a parable, a cupy the highest place there. And
familiar similitude. all who arrive at heaven will have
The point of the reason to regard themselves as greatly
parable seems to be, that God will
distribute the rewards of heaven acAs parallel passages, examine Mark
cording to his own good pleasure, so 10:17-31. Luke 18: 18–30.
as to illustrate his own mercy and
liberality; and not in accordance Let us REFLECT on
with expectations that might result 1. The danger connected with be- from a human view of men's coming rich. vs. 23, 24. Compare 1 Tim. parative merit. Thus the Saviour 6: 17.
would check the spirit of pride, and 2. The proper use of riches. v. 21. of envy and jealousy, and of the seekCompare 1 Tim. 6: 18, 19.
| ing of honors; and would cultivate
2 And when he had agreed | He saith unto them, Go ye also with the laborers for a penny into the vineyard; and whatsoa day, he sent them into his ever is right, that shall ye revineyard.
ceive. 3 And he went out about 8 So when evening was come, the third hour, and saw others the lord of the vineyard saith standing idle in the market- unto his steward, Call the laplace,
borers, and give them their hire, 4 And said unto them, Go beginning from the last unto the ye also into the vineyard, and first. whatsoever is right, I will give 9 And when they came that you. And they went their were hired about the eleventh way.
hour, they received every man 5 Again he went out about a penny. the sixth and ninth hour, and 10 But when the first came, did likewise.
they supposed that they should 6 And about the eleventh | have received more; and they hour he went out, and found likewise received every man a others standing idle, and saith penny. unto them, Why stand ye here 11 And when they had reall the day idle?
ceived it, they murmured against 7 They say unto him, Be- the good man of the house, cause no man hath hired us. 12 Saying, These last have among his disciples the spirit of hum- o'clock, so that the time from six to ble submission to God, of gratitude seren o'clock would correspond to for being permitted to occupy any the first hour of the day. | Marketplace in the divine kingdom, and of place. The word thus translated mutual joy at one another's advance signifies the place where articles were ment and bliss. || The kingdom of exposed for sale, where trials were heaven is like, &c. As if our Lord attended and assemblies collected. had said, The state of things in the It was, therefore, a place of public Messiah's reign may be likened to and common resort, suitable for find. the conduct of a certain house. ing laborers. holder.
4. The laborers here spoken of 2. A penny a day. The coin here were merely promised that they mentioned bore the value, according should receive a suitable compensato some accounts, of about nine cents tion. of our money; according to others, 5. Sixth and ninth hour; twelve of fourteen. This was the usual pay o'clock, and three in the afternoon. for a day's labor.
6. Eleventh hour; one hour before 3. Third hour; corresponding to the close of the day. nine o'clock in the morning, accord- 8. His steward. The man who had ing to our reckoning. The day was at charge of his business. that time divided into twelve hours 11. Good man of the house. The (see John 11:9); and the night into original word is the same as is transthe same number. We shall have a lated in the first verse householder. sufficiently correct notion of the man. It is an old expression, equivalent to ner of reckoning, if we consider the our word proprietor, or master of the day uniformly as beginning at our six | family.
wrought but one hour, and thou go thy way: I will give unto hast made them equal unto us, this last even as unto thee. which have borne the burden 15 Is it not lawful for me to and heat of the day.
do what I will with mine own? 13 But he answered one of Is thine eye evil because I am them, and said, Friend, I do good ? thee no wrong: didst not thou 16 So the last shall be first, agree with me for a penny ? and the first last : for many be
14 Take that thine is, and called, but few chosen.
13. No wrong; no injustice. might comport with the signal be. - 14. I will give; I choose to give, I nevolence of their Master to confer am disposed, while I do you no injus- very special favors on others, which tice, to treat with signal and unex- would raise them to an equality in pected kindness these thy fellow bliss with the apostles. Thus the
last might be treated as the first, and 15. Is thine eye evil ? Because I the first as the last. Thus, too, all am kind and benevolent, and wish to the Messiah's servants would receive treat a person abundantly better than distinguished honor and bliss, and his deserts and his expectations, wilt might all, even the lowest of them, thou indulge in envy, and look on be regarded as raised to royal dignity. me with suspicion ? An evil eye Let there, then, be no undue self-valumeans an enrious eye, or simply enoy. ation, and no disposition to think less
16. So the last, &c. This verse worthily of others who are engaged, repeats the proverbial saying, which or who may yet be engaged, in the it was the design of the parable to Lord's service; and let there be no illustrate. The laborers who came disposition to reflect unkindly on the last, were, by the signal kindness of Lord, if he should look with just as the proprietor, put on an equality much favor upon other laborers as with the others in regard to compen- upon his first disciples. || For many sation. Those who entered the vine- be called, but fero chosen. Another yard first, received a fair and ample proverbial saying, applicable to the compensation, and ought not to have subject of discourse, and illustrated complained of the signal kindness of by the parable. While many are their employer towards the others. called into my service, few, indeed, They ought, on the contrary, to have of them can be chosen to distinguished admired his benevolence. So, in re- | | honor in my kingdom. In distribuspect to the rewards and honors which ting the honors and bliss of the divine the disciples had reason to expect, kingdom, God will be actuated more they ought not to regard themselves by a merciful and benevolent spirit, as occupying such a station, that utterly exceeding the deserts and the none could receive favors equal to expectations of his servants, than by those which they might receive, nor a strict regard to their comparative ought they to cherish a temper un deserts. He will delight in multiplyfriendly to the elevation of others |ing his favors to the great company, to honor and bliss. They ought not rather than in elevating some to suto fix their hearts on compensation perior distinction. It ought, indeed, and dignity, nor to indulge an over- to be sufficient for any person, that weening self-esteem, nor to cherish he will be allowed to have any share expectations that might not accord in the exalted, the royal honors and with the benevolent intentions of bliss of heaven, without indulging the their Lord. They must remember, thought of being elevated to distinc. that while no injustice nor unkind. tion among his fellow-servants. The ness would be done to them, it lowest place in heaven is unspeakably
17 And Jesus, going up to the Gentiles to mock, and to Jerusalem, took the twelve dis- scourge, and to crucify him: and ciples apart, in the way, and said the third day he shall rise again. unto them,
20 Then came to him the 18 Behold, we go up to Je- mother of Zebedee's children. rusalem ; and the Son of man with her sons, worshipping him, shall be betrayed unto the chief | and desiring a certain thing of priests, and unto the scribes, bim. and they shall condemn him to 21 And he said unto her, death,
What wilt thou ? She saith 19 And shall deliver him to unto him, Grant that these my too honorable and happy for any man 19. Deliver him to the Gentiles; to to claim, or to deserve. And if it the Romans, who then had dominion should please God to bestow equal over the Jews. Compare, as paralbliss on some who have not labored lel passages, Mark 10: 32–34. Luke so long as others, let this arrange. 18:31-34. Luke informs us (18: ment illustrate, and lead all to admire, 34) that the disciples did not underthe benevolence of God, which, withstand what their Lord had told them out depressing a single individual, To us it may seem almost inconceivelevates many.
able, that they should not have fully
comprehended his meaning. But we PRACTICAL Hints. 1. Admire the must consider, that from their childcondescension of God in admitting hood their minds had been filled with men to the bliss and dignity of heaven. error respecting the Messiah, and
2. Beware of thinking very highly they had been indulging anticipations of services which you have performed entirely contrary to what their Masin the cause of Christ.
ter had been repeatedly telling them. 3. Rejoice in God's kindness to They probably thought, that their others. That kindness does you no Master could not intend to be underinjury, while it does them immense stood just as he seemed to speak, and good.
therefore they did not permit themIt may here be observed, that the selves to see the real truth as he enparable 'in Luke 17:7–10, is very deavored to enforce it on them. applicable to the occasion spoken of 20. The mother of Zcbedee's chilin this place by Matthew.
dren; James and John; see Matt. 4:
21; also Mark 10:35. Their mother's 17. Going up to Jerusalem. Jesus name was Salome; for she, who, in was now going up to Jerusalem for Matt. 27: 56, is called the mother of the last time ; and he wished to pre- Zebedee's children, is, in Mark 15: 40, pare the minds of the disciples for called Salome. Worshipping ; bowthe events which were soon to occur. ing down to the earth in token of Hence he took them apart, by them- | reverence. selves, aside from other companies 21. Grant, &c. Probably the lanthat might be also going to Jeru- guage of our Lord in 19:28 was not salem.
rightly apprehended by the disciples ; 18. They shall condemn him to death. and they still indulged the thought It was in the power of the Sanhedrim, of great earthly distinction in the the highest tribunal among the Jews, administration of the Messiah. The to pass sentence of death; but the two disciples, James and John, toexecuting of the sentence belonged, gether with their mother, indulged according to the limitation of power ambitious views in regard to the introduced by the Romans, to the honors of the Messiah's reign. They Roman governor.
| perhaps thought, that there was a two sons, may sit, the one on baptized with the baptism that thy right hand, and the other on I am baptized with? They say the left, in thy kingdom.
unto him, We are able. 22 But Jesus answered and 23 And he saith unto them, said, Ye know not what ye ask. Ye shall drink indeed of my Are ye able to drink of the cup cup, and be baptized with the that I shall drink of, and to be baptism that I am baptized with:
prospect of their being elevated above treme suffering which our Lord was their brethren, in consequence of to undergo. The idea of being imtheir having been distinguished on mersed in suffering, or overwhelmed soine former occasions. See Mark 5: with suffering, is here expressed by 37. Matt. 17: 1. Their mother made the word baptize. The meaning would request in their behalf. The request be more clearly expressed by transthat one of her sons might sit on his lating thus — Čan ye be overiohelmed right hand, and the other on his left, [can ye bear to be overwhelmed) with when he should enter on his kingly the overwhelming with which I am to power, was a request that they might be overwhelmed in other words, be his two most distinguished offi- Can ye endure sufferings like those cers; that they might occupy stations with which I shall be overwheimed ? of power and honor next to his own. The enduring of sore calamities is Mark (10: 35) represents the two dis- expressed, in other parts of the Biciples as asking for themselves; but, ble, by such terms as these — passing as in common life a man is said to do through deep waters, and being covered himself what he employs others to do by waves. See Ps. 69: 2. 42: 7. Is. for him, so, doubtless, on this occa- | 43: 2. We are able. So allured sion, the sons preferred their request were they by the hope of distinguished through the agency of their mother. honor, that they declared themselves
22. Ye know not what ye ask ; ye able and willing to undergo any sufask in a very ignorant manner, not ferings that might be necessary. considering the nature of my govern 23. Ye shall drink, &c. Ye will ment, nor the sorrows which I must indeed be called to very severe sufferendure in order to establish it. | To ings; sufferings such as I myself shall drink of the cup, &c. A cup is fre endure. This language must be unquently used in the Scriptures as anderstood comparatively. The disciples image of the sufferings which God is were not to endure the very same pleased to appoint either for his foes sufferings as their Master would; but or for his friends. Thus the Saviour they were to endure similar and great says (John 18:11), in regard to the sufferings. || To sit on my right hand sufferings which were corning upon and on my left; to possess the highhim, “The cup which my Father est places in my government. || Is not hath given me, shall I not drink it?”mine, &c. To assign these high hon. Compare, also, Ps. 60: 3. 75:8. Is. ors is no part of my business; that 51:17, 22. Lam. 4:21. The idea, matter is already arranged by my Fathen, of the Saviour was, Can ye en ther, and they shall obtain such disdure the sufferings which are appoint- tinction for whom he has destined it. ed for me? or such sufferings as I am It does not pertain to me to distribute to endure, before I enter fully on my such honors, except in accordance with glory? | And be baptized, &c. The the appointment of my Father; and it words here rendered baptize and bap- does not become me to say any thing tism would be more intelligible if in reference to this matter. Thus the their primary meaning were expressed. Saviour waived the subject. It will Allusion is not here made to the New be perceived, that in our translation, Testament ordinance, but to the ex- the words it shall be given are print