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  • JOHN WESLEY'S BIBLE COMMENTARY
    NOTES - LUKE 12

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    Verse 1. He said to his disciples first - But afterward ver. 54 to all the people. Matt. xvi, 6.

    Verse 3. Matt. x, 27.

    4. But I say to you, Fear not - Let not the fear of man make you act the hypocrite, or conceal any thing which I have commissioned you to publish.

    Verse 5. Fear him who hath power to cast into hell - Even to his peculiar friends, Christ gives this direction. Therefore the fearing of God as having power to cast into hell, is to be pressed even on true believers.

    Verse 6. Are not five sparrows - But trust as well as fear him.

    Verse 7. Matt. x, 30.

    8. And I say to you - If you avoid all hypocrisy, and openly avow my Gospel: The Son of man shall confess you - before the angels - At the last day. Mark viii, 38; Chap. ix, 26.

    Verse 10. And whosoever - As if he had said, Yet the denying me in some degree, may, upon true repentance, be forgiven; but if it rise so high as that of the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost, it shall never be forgiven, neither is there place for repentance. Matt. xii, 31; Mark iii, 28.

    Verse 11. Take no thought - Be not solicitous about the matter or manner of your defense; nor how to express yourselves. Matt. x, 19; Luke xxi, 12.

    Verse 14. Who made me a judge? - In worldly things. His kingdom is not of this world.

    Verse 15. He said to them - Perhaps to the two brothers, and through them to the people. A man's life - That is, the comfort or happiness of it.

    Verse 17. What shall I do? - The very language of want! Do? Why, lay up treasure in heaven.

    Verse 20. Thou fool - To think of satisfying thy soul with earthly goods! To depend on living many years! Yea, one day! They - The messengers of death, commissioned by God, require thy soul of thee!

    Verse 21. Rich toward God - Namely, in faith, and love, and good works.

    Verse 22. Matt. vi, 25.

    25. Which of you can add the least measure - It seems, to add one cubit to a thing (which is the phrase in the original) was a kind of proverbial expression for making the least addition to it.

    Verse 28. The grass - The Greek word means all sorts of herbs and flowers.

    Verse 29. Neither be ye of a doubtful mind - The word in the original signifies, any speculations or musings in which the mind fluctuates, or is suspended (like meteors in the air) in an uneasy hesitation.

    Verse 32. It is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom - How much more food and raiment? And since ye have such an inheritance, regard not your earthly possessions.

    Verse 33. Sell what ye have - This is a direction, not given to all the multitude: (much less is it a standing rule for all Christians:) neither to the apostles; for they had nothing to sell, having left all before: but to his other disciples, (mentioned chap. xii, 22, and Acts i, 15, ) especially to the seventy, that they might be free from all worldly entanglements. Matt. vi, 19.

    Verse 35. Let your loins be girt - An allusion to the long garments, worn by the eastern nations, which they girded or tucked up about their loins, when they journeyed or were employed in any labour: as also to the lights that servants used to carry at weddings, which were generally in the night.

    Verse 37. He will come and serve them - The meaning is, he will show them his love, in the most condescending and tender manner.

    Verse 38. The Jews frequently divided the night into three watches, to which our Lord seems here to allude.

    41. Speakest thou this parable to us - Apostles and disciples: Or to all - The people? Does it concern us alone? Or all men?

    Verse 42. Who is that faithful and wise steward - Our Lord's answer manifestly implies, that he had spoken this parable primarily (though not wholly) to the ministers of his word: Whom his Lord shall make ruler over his household - For his wisdom and faithfulness.

    Verse 43. Happy is that servant - God himself pronounces him wise, faithful, happy! Yet we see, he might fall from all, and perish for ever.

    Verse 46. The Lord will appoint him his portion - His everlasting portion, with the unfaithful - As faithful as he was once, God himself being the Judge!

    Verse 47. And that servant who knew his Lord's will shall be beaten with many stripes - And his having much knowledge will increase, not lessen, his punishment.

    Verse 49. I am come to send fire - To spread the fire of heavenly love over all the earth.

    Verse 50. But I have a baptism to be baptized with - I must suffer first, before I can set up my kingdom. And how I long to fight my way through all!

    Verse 51. Suppose ye that I am come to send peace upon earth - That universal peace will be the immediate effect of my coming? Not so, but quite the contrary. Matt. x, 34.

    Verse 52. There shall be five in one house, three against two, and two against three - There being an irreconcilable enmity between the Spirit of Christ and the spirit of the world.

    Verse 53. The father against the son - For those who reject me will be implacable toward their very nearest relations who receive me. At this day also is this scripture fulfilled. Now likewise there is no concord between Christ and Belial.

    Verse 54. And he said to the people also - In the preceding verses he speaks only to his disciples. From the west - In Judea, the west wind, blowing from the sea, usually brought rain: the south wind, blowing from the deserts of Arabia, occasioned sultry heat. Matt. xvi, 2.

    Verse 56. How do ye not discern this season - Of the Messiah's coming, distinguishable by so many surer signs.

    Verse 57. Why even of yourselves, without any external sign, judge ye not what is right? - Why do ye not discern and acknowledge the intrinsic excellence of my doctrine?

    Verse 58. When thou art going - As if he had said, And ye have not a moment to lose. For the executioners of God's vengeance are at hand. And when he hath once delivered you over to them, ye are undone for ever. Matt. v, 25.

    Verse 59. A mite - was about the third part of a farthing sterling.

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