Wright - BT300 W8 1788

Lose!) and SAVIOUR, 7ESUS CHRIST. fizid, That C/srf conzeth of the feed of Da- vid; and out of the town of Bethlehem, where David wash This difpute was carried to fuch an height, that fame of them, knowing that the officers were Pent to apprehend our Redeemer, threatened to lay hands on his : but Divine Providence would :not permit them to execute their cruel defign; for thoughfonte ofthem would have taken him, yet no man laid hands on tains. The officers now returned to the coun- cil, and were afked; with warmth, Why they had; not brought Jesus of Nazareth, whom they were lent to apprehend ? They endeavoured .to excufe themfelves, by re- lating the manner in which they were over- come, and difarmed byhis eloquence : No man, Paid they,fpake like this man. But if they thought to foften the refentment of the council, by declaring what a wonderful man. Jesus CHRIST was, and what an heart- af eeting (train of divine eloquence flowed front his lips, theywere very much miflalten: the prejudices ofthe rulers of Ifrael were too deep-rooted,. and their rancour and malice too inveterate to be fo eafily overcome : their pride fcorned to fubmit to the dictates of the unpopular and unlearned, and, with indignation and fcorn, they replied, Are ye alfo deceived? Have any of the rulers, or of the Pharifees believed on him? But this people, who knoweth not the law, are cuffed. They thought it a piece of the moft un- paralled impudence, that the common people fhould prefume to acknowledge Jesus to be the Meffiah, when the great donors of the law, the chief priefis and Pharifees, and all the learned men of the nation, publicly oppofed his preaching, de- famed his charadler, and determined to defiroy him. But their pride and envy foon received a fevere reprimand fromNicodemus, who had formerly attended on Jesus by night; and was convinced that he was the Meffiah, though he did not openly confefs him, for fear of the Jews. On this occafionhe re- buked the pride and feltfuffiçiency of the No. 12. s33 enemies of Jesus, by inquiring, Does our law coednsu any man before he is heard? They had jufl now condemned their offi- cers for being ignorant of the law, when it appeared that themfelves were more ig- norant, by pretending to condemn a per- fon before they had proved him guilty : they were aéling diireflly contrary to the fundamentalprinciples ofthe lawof equity, at the fame time, that_they boafled their fuperior knowledge of, and clofeft attach- ment to, it's precepts. This (harp reproof of. Nicodemus, fo highly exafperated the whole council, that, with an air of indignation and contempt, they sliced him, if he alfo was one of thole mean perfons who had joined together to ftspport the pretenfions of a Galilean, though the Scriptures had plainly declared, that Bethlehemwas the place of the Mef-. hah'a nativity : to which they added, that, if he refufed to liften to them, he fhould fearch the Scriptures, and he would foon be convinced, that the great prophet, men- tioned by Mofes, was not to be born in Galilee : Art thou alfo of Galilee? Midi they. Search and look : for out of Galileo arifeth noprophet. The council foonbroke up after making this anfwer to Nicodemus, and our Lord, well knowing their malicious intentions, retired to the Mount of Olives, where he fpent the night with his difciples ; but early the next morning he returned to the temple and taught the people. The Scribes and Pharifees purfued him with unabating refentment, and were de- termined either to render him odious to the people, or an offender in the eye of the Roman governor. Accordingly, they brought before him, a woman who had been taken in the a& of adultery ; defiring him to declare what punifhment fhe ought to fuffer : This woman, faid they to our great Redeemer, was taken in adultery, in the very ad. Now Mofes, in the law, com- manded us, that fuck fhould be (toned: but whatfaye thou? Had Jesus prefumed to pardon the adulterefs, and infliéled no K k punifhment