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March 2, 1884.
Commit to memory verses 29-31. 22. Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars-hill, being; as certain also of your own poets have said, and said, Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all For we are also his offspring. things ye are too superstitivus.
29. Forasmuch then as we are the ofr23. For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions,
spring of God, we ought not to think that I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNI
the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver or KNOWN GOD. Whom therefore ye ignorantly
| stone, graven by art and man's device. worship, him declare I unto you.
30. And the times of this ignorance God
winked at ; but now commandeth all men 24. God that made the world, and all things there
every where to repent: in, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth,
31. Because he hath appointed a day, in dwelleth not in temples made with hands;
the which he will judge the world in right25. Neither is worshipped with men's hands, as eousness, by that man whom he hath orthough he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all dained : whereof he hath given assurance unt life, and breath, and all things;
all men, in that he hath raised him from the 26. And hath made of one blood all nations of
dead. men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and
32. And when they heard of the resurrection of hath determined the times before appointed, and
the dead, some mocked: and others said, We will the bounds of their habitation;
hear thee again of this matter.
. Fauldeparte 27. That they should seek the Lord, if haply they 34. Howbeit. certain men clave unto him, and
m might ferl after him, and find him, tl hough he be
believed: among the which was Dionysius the Areonot far from every one of us :
pagite, and a woman named Damaris, and others 28. For in him we live, and move, and have our with them.
( 1. THE GOSPEL VERSUS FALSE PHILOSOPHY.
2. THE TRUE GOD VERSUS IDOLS.
( 3. THE CALL TO REPENTANCE.
INSTRUCTION. Read carefully vs. 15 to 21. PLACE: Athens, capi- , nothing but is the Giver of all good. 26. (6) Made tal of Greece: the most famous city in the world for of one blood-the Creator of mankind, also. The unity poetry, philosophy and art. Paul's "spirit was siirred of the race is asserted. (7) Determined the timeswhen lie saw the city wholly given to idolatry.” God's Providence and Government are here affirmed.
22. Mars' Hill the seat of justice, where sat the 27. Should seek the Lord : (8) Men's duty is thus set Supreme Court of Athens. Too superstitions=tery forth; to seek God, and not worship idols. (9) God's careful about religion ; full of reverence for the gods, nearness to men is expressed by not far from us. 80-alled. 23. Your devotious-your sacred objects, 28. Our dependence on Him is set forth in v. 28. Your altars, images, &c., more than 30,000 of them, it has own poets-he now appeals to Aratus, one of their been said. The Unknowna confession of ignorance own poets. So said also Cleanthus, and several of the true God. Ignorantly-without knowing His other poets. 29. A denunciation of image-making; name, character or will. Him declare I-this is the see 2d Commandment. 30. Winked at=overlooked, mission of the preacher. 24-25. God that made- passed by without punishing. But now repentance is (1) the Creator. (2) Lord
» Lord Ruler
13) Droelleth not demanded. 31. Christ is to judge the world. As
(3) Droelleth not is temples-is incomprehensible and 'omnipresent. surance-the resurrection is God's evidence in favor of (4) Neither is worshipped, &c.—but in spirit. (5) Nerds Christ's Judgeship.
QUESTIONS. Have you read Acts 17: 15 to 21 ? In, 26. What does he next affirm? Who what city do we find the Apostle now? Tell created man? Do all men come from one what you know about it. Tell how Paul was earthly father? Who was be? What is affected by seeing the city given to idolatry. meant by determining times and bounds ?
22. How did Paul come to stand on Mars' 27. What is man's duty ? Is it possible to Hill? See v. 19. Where was it? What find Him? (Yes). Is He near, or far away? was held there? How did he begin bis ad
28. How do we live ? From Whom did dress? What is meant by superstitious ?
we receive life? Did He give, and does He Had it a bad meaning originally?
continue, our power of movement ? For what 23. What reason did he give for his re
are we dependent on God? Mention some mark? What is meant by devotions? Were
Greek poets who taught the same. there many such objects in Athens ? What | inscription was upon a certain altar? Of 29. What is forbidden in the 2d command ? what was that a confession? Do the heathen What ought we not even to think? know God ? How did they worship Him?
30. What is it to wink at a thing? What What is the preacher to declare?
does God command ? 24. Was the world eternal ? (No). Did 31. Why repent? How will He judge ? it make itself ? Did it come by chance ? | By Whom? What assurance of this is given ? Who made it? What do we call God in the 32. What effect did the preaching of the first part of the Creed? (Maker, &c). What resurrection produce? Tell what division is He still? Where does He dwell?
took place. What did the latter class say ? 25. How is He rightly worshipped ? Does 33. What did Paul do? Did the AtheHe need sacrifices of fruit and animals ? nians miss their opportunity ? Who gives life, and all things ?
CATECHISM. Ques, 109. Doth God forbid, in this command, only adultery, and such like gross sins? Ans. Since both our body and soul are temples of the Holy Ghost, He commands us to preserve them
pure and holy; therefore He forbids all unchaste actions, gestures, words, thoughts, desires, and whatever can entice men thereto.
March 2, 1884. cultured audience ever addressed by Athens, the capital of Attica, in him. In that city art and philosophy Greece, was named from Athenæ, the had reached their perfection-a per: goddess Minerva, and was founded by fection never since surpassed. There Cecrops about 1556 B. C. It was in its the gospel now came into conflict with greatest glory about 400 B. C., and classical culture, philosophy and a cold, contained about 150,000 inhabitants ; sneering skepticism. We shall see that of whom by far the larger part were part of the audience mocked and part slaves.
procrastinated, saying: we will hear thee In this city four schools of Philoso-again! But they never had that priviphy had their headquarters : 1. The lege. Peripatetics, (followers of Aristotle), 2. Here we have also an instance of an The Academicians (disciples of Plato), interrupted sermon. 3. The Epicureans (followers of Epicu- Preaching to a people who knew rus), 4. The Stoics (disciples of Zeno). nothing of the Old Testament, Paul
Paul came into no conflict with the could not take a text from the ScripAristotelian or Platonic philosophy. tures. But he found a text at hand; These two systems of thought continue the inscription on one of their altars to influence the world to this day. was: “to the unknown God.” And in
Against the Epicureans and Stoics the course of his sermon he quotes a Paul's address was aimed. The Epicu- passage from their own literature. rians were atheists and materialists, be- " For we are his offspring." lieving that the world was the result of Thus he met the cultured heathen on Chance—"a fortuitous concourse of their own ground. atoms.”
His place of standing was the seat of The Stoies were pantheists, believing Justice, where criminals were tried, that the universe is god ; that there is convicted and sentenced to suffer the no god but the combined forces and penalty of Justice. There he tells of laws which are manifested in the exist- the Great Judgment! And he calls on ing universe.
his hearers to repent that they might Neither of them believed in a future escape. life, the immortality of the soul, nor in But he does not begin with the judga personal moral Governor and Judge. ment. He lays a foundation first, by So far they were agreed. But their telling them of the Creator, Ruler and moral (ethical) systems were utterly op. Governor of the world. Let us first posite. “The highest aim of the Epi- analyze his sermon, and then come to curean was to gratify himself: the phil- the application. osophy of Pleasure. The Stoics, on the Here Paul came into conflict not other hand, considered the great end of only with heathen religion, but also man to be the attainment of a lofty with Philosophy, or human wisdom at superiority to both pleasure and pain, its best. With Epicureans and Stoics and of a stern indifference both to the he disputed, as he had hitherto with cravings of self and the feelings of Jewish legalists. At length he was others.”
I brought to Mars' Hill, where sat the The Epicurean said : eat, drink and Supreme Court of Athens: and there be merry; for to-morrow we die ; and he had the privilege of preaching the are then dead forever. The Stoics be-gospel. lieved that at death man returned to “The Greek religion was a mere the original material of creation, as a deification of human attributes and drop of water becomes absorbed in the the powers of Nature." Nature and ocean.
man were in reality the objects of It was the mission of Paul not only worship. Under outward forms of to preach to Jews, who had the Old beauty the most shameless sips were Testament Scriptures, but especially to practiced in the name of religion ! the heathen, who were people sitting in 22. Paul stood in the midst of Mars' gross darkness. In some places he found Hill. No place in Athens was so suitthese in a state of ignorance and degra- able for a discourse upon the mysteries dation. But in Athens he met the most of religion as Mars' Hill; and Paul was able, by his previous training, to All paths we tread, and all the marts of men, meet these philosophers on their own Filled, too, the sea, and every creek and bay ;
And all, in all things, need we help of Zeus, ground. Of course a mere outline of
For we, too, are His offspring."— Aratus. all that he said is given in our lesson.
1. Ye men of Athens, &c. Your Cleanthes sang in the same strain : altars to unknown gods prove, first, “ Most glorious of immortals, many-named, your desire to worship, and secondly, Almighty and forever, Thee, O Zeus, your ignorance in worshipping. He Sovereign o'er nature, guiding with Thy hand did not denounce them as superstitious. All things that are, we greet with praises,
Thee 'iis meet that mortals call with one in the sense in which we now use that
accord. word. Very careful in religion, very For we Thine offspring are, and we alone devoted After erecting altars to every Of all that live and move upon this earth, known deity, so-called, they had mis- Receive the gift of imitative speech.” givings lest some god were slighted ; and they erected an altar to the un |
7. We ought not to think that the known God. On this confession of igno
Godhead is like to gold, &c. Thus Paul rance Paul seized, and then preached
denounces idolatry. No graven image the true and living God.
of God is to be made; for He is a Spirit. 2. God that made the World. In
8. The times of this ignorance God contrast with their idols, made by men's
en's winked at; He mercifully overlooked hands, and placed in temples, God is their errors
is their errors. But now demands that the Creator of the World: he is also i men give up their follies, and repent; and continues to be its Ruler and Gov. for a great judgment is to be executed: ernor. (Lord): and is so great that He and it will be done in righteousness. fills heaven and earth, and dwelleth.
9. And the greatest and best anpot merely in temples.
nouncement is then made. He preached 3. God does not need anything from
to them Christ, the Man whom God men's hands-such as sacrifices. On
hath ordained to be Judge of all men. the contrary He is the Giver of all
Doubtless he told of His life and death, life, &c.
and proclaimed Him as the Saviour; 4. He hath made of one blood, &c.;
for His resurrection from the dead was is the Creator of all mankind; and,
given as the assurance, evidence, or besides, all men are brothers, springing pr
proof of His Messiahship and Judgefrom one source, (made of one blood). |
ship. Over the human family, divided into so
When they heard of the resurrection, many branches, God has been exercis- |
some mocked. Paul was here suddenly ing Providential care-determining their
ir interrupted. Some broke out into times and bounds, v. 26.
laughter and derision. Others, not 5. They should seek the Lord. and I liking to come to an immediate decifind Him. Man was made capable of ||
sion, said: we will hear thee again of knowing God, and ought not to have
this matter. fallen into the follies of idolatry. They
Vs. 33-34. Delays are dangerous. should seek God; for He is near to all
Paul departed from them. But some His creatures.
"fruits there were. Certain men clave unto 6. In Him we live, and move, and
him, and believed. Two believers are erist. Man's union with and depend
mentioned by name. Dionysius was ence upon God are next affirmed. By
probably one of the judges. Damaris Him we first came into being, received
was, doubtless, a distinguished woman life. In Him we still continue to have
in the city, and her name was deemed that life. He shows that some of their
worthy of being recorded as a believer own countrymen knew this great truth.
in Christ. “For we are also His offspring."
It is in Athens that unassisted The quotation is from Aratus, prob
human nature attained its highest point ably of Tarsus, Paul's native place.
of culture and religion ; and thero the
gospel message was the same as to the "From Zeus begin we; never let us leave
most degraded people : repent, prepare His name unloved. With Him, with Zeus, for. Juagment.
for judgment. Christ will jndge in
U are filled
righteousness. Flee to Him for refuge.
March 9, 1884.
Commit to memory rerses 9-11. 1. After these things, Paul departed from Athens, i 9. Then spake the Lord to Paul in the and came to Corinth;
night by a vision, Be not afraid, but speak, 2. And found a certain Jew named Aquila, born
and hold not thy peace : in Pontus, lately come from Italy, with his wife Pris.
10. For I am with thee, and no man shall cilla, (because that Claudius had commanded all
set on thee, to hurt thee: for I have much Jews to depart from Rome) and came unto them.
people in this city.
11. And he continued there a year and six 3. And because he was of the same craft, he abode
months, teaching the word of God among with them, and wrought, (for by their occupation them. they were tent-nakers.)
12. And when Gallio was the deputy of Achaia, the 4. And he reasoned in the synagogue every sab Jews made insurrection with one accord against bath, and persuaded the Jews and the Greeks. | Paul, and brought him to the judgment-seat,
5. And when Silas and Timotheus were come from 13. Saying, This fellow persuadeth men to worship Macedonia, Paul was pressed in the spirit, and tes. God contrary to the law. tified to the Jewe, that Jesus was Christ.
14. And when Paul was now ahont to open his 6. And when they opposed themselves, and blas. mouth. Gallio said unto the Jews, If it were a matter phemed, he shook his raiment, and said unto them, of wrong, or wicked lewdness, ye Jews, reason Your blood be upon your own heads: I am clean: would that I should bear with you: from henceforth I will go unto the Gentiles.
15. But if it be a question of words and names, 7. And he departed thenre, and entered into a cer. and of your law, look ye to it: for I will be no judge tain man's house, named Justus, one that worshipped of such matters. God, whose house joined hard to the synagogue. | 16. And he drave them from the judgment seat.
8. And Crispus, the chief ruler of the synagogue, 17. Then all the Greeks took Sosthenes, the chief believed on the Lord with all his bouse: and many ruler of the synagogue, and beat him before the of the Corinthians hearing, believed, and were bap- judgment-seat. And Gallio cared for none of those tized.
( 1. To Jews first, then to Gentiles. 1-8.
I 3. An Indifferent Ruler. 12-17.
have much people in this city.
INSTRUCTION 1. Corinth was the capital of Achaia, and was one very close to. 8. Crispus, another convert, of great of the most populous and wealthy cities of Greece: influence, because formerly ruler of the Synagogue. and equally luxurions and dissolute "the Piris of All is house--another instance of householl re'irin. antiquity." 2. Aquila and Priscilla, Jews, originally 9-10. Then spake the Lord Jesus gave Paul comfort from Pontus, but lately from Italy. Claudius, Ro- and directions. I have much people-many will be man emperor from A. D. 41 to 54, expelled all come My disciples. 11. Alonger ministry than Jews from Rome. 3. Craft-trade, Occupation. Paul usually devoted to one place. Gellio, brother Wrought -- labored for a living. Tent-makers of philosopher Seneca, a mild and amiahle ruler. made tents of skin or cloth. It was neither im-1 Achaia usually signified all of Greece, but lat meant proper nor a disgrace for Paul to work. 5. Pressed only that province, of which Corinth was the capital. in spirit--horne away by an unusual impulse, deeply 14. Leirdness, a gross offence. 15. Words awi namrs; impressed. 6. They blasphe med-spoke with con. he wonld not concern himself about Jewish matters. tempt of Jesus. Unto the Gentiles-he is called "the 17. Sosthenes afterwards became a Christian. (See Apostle of the Gentiles." 7, Justus-a Greek who 1 Cor. 1:1-2). embraced the Christian religion. Joined hard-was
QUESTIONS. 1. What can you tell about Corinth? Who 9-10. What occurred on a certain night? now came to preach there?
| What did the Lord say Paul should not do? 2. Whom did he meet there? Tell about What should he do? What comforting ashim and his wife. Why did they come from surance did He give? What reason did the Italy? Who was Claudius ?
Lord give for continued preaching ? 3. At what trade did these three newly- 11. How long did Paul remain in Corinth! made friends work? Was it improper for the Was this longer than usual ? Apostle to work for his own support? Wbat
12. Who was deputy? Tell about his diswas his trade? Did his companions become believers in Christ?
position, etc. What did the Jews do at that 4. How did Paul spend his Sabbaths in them
time? city ?
13. What charge did they bring against 5. What helpers arrived ? How was Paul Paul? Was it true? (No). affected? What testimony did he bear so
14-16. Who prevented Paul from making earnestly?
his defense? Did Gallio think a defense un6. Did the Jews accept Jesus as Messiah ? | necessary? What did he say to the Jews? What act did Paul perform? What words | Did he concern himself about either the Jew. did he speak? To whom did he then turn? | ish or the Christian faith? What is his title ?
7. Into whose house did he next go? Was 17. What was done to Sosthenes? What he a believer? Near what place was this ? did he afterwards become ? Did Gallio pro
8. Who was the next convert ? Did many tect Sosthenes from the mob? Should he not follow his example? Were any members of have done so? Is indifference to earnest matthe family excluded from baptism?
ters a credit to any man?
CATECHISM. Ohues. 110. What doth God forbid in the eighth command ?
Ans God forbids not only those thefts and robberies which are punishable by the magistrate, but He comprehende under the name of theft, all wicked tricks and devices, whereby we design to appropriate to ourselves the goods which belong to our neighbor; whether it be by force, or under the appearane of right, as by unjust weights, ells, measures, fraudulent merchandise, false coins, usury, or by any other way forbidden by God; as also all covetousness, all waste and abuse of Hiy gifts.
March 9, 1884. nothing of its greatest men!”—FarAfter these things Paul departed. He rar. left Athens, not because of persecution, But even in dissolute Corinth, as we but on account of the indifference and shall see, the Gospel was to be eminentskepticism of its inhabitants. His teach- ly successful in rescuing the people ing found no acceptance there. Though | from lives of shame and sin once and again near this city on his 2-3 Found a certain Jew named Aquila. third missionary journey he did not re Paul having no congregation at hand to visit it.
give him support went to work and Came to Corinth. It was situated on earned his own livelihood, in company the Isthmus, between the two parts called with a man and his wife-exiles from Hellas and Peloponnessus, and was the Rome by the decree of the Emperor. largest city in Greece, and, even more Tent-making was the occupation of these than Athens, it was the centre of Greek three companions. If Aquila and Prislife.
cilla were a help to Paul in business, he Corinth was inhabited by a mixed was a still greater help to them in spirpopulation. It was very wealthy, lux-itual matters. Through his conversaurious, effeminate and dissolute. “It tions with them they learned of the was the Paris of the ancient world, de- Saviour, and became disciples. voted to pleasure, and so notorious for | 4. He reasoned in the synagogue profligacy that to Corinthianize was a | every Sabbath. Paul did not, like 80 current term for the practice of licentious. many sojourners in cities, spend his Sabness."
baths in gaiety and sight-seeing, but The lusts of the flesh were deified, I went into the synagogue, and persuaded and worshipped under the name of Ve- Jews and Greek proselytes to embrace nus.
the gospel. " It was to Corinth, with its mongrel 5. He was soon afterwards joined in and heterogeneous population of Greek the work by Silas and Timothy. Thus adventurers and Roman bourgeois, with he was greatly encouraged, and preached å tainting infusion of Phoenicians — with fervor and power. The one theme this mass of Jews, ex-soldiers, philoso- of his sermons was that Jesus of Nazphers, merchants, sailors, freedmen, areth is the Messiah, whom the Jews slaves, trades people, hucksters, and expected. agents of every form of vice-a colony 6. But the Jews opposed this teachwithout aristocracy, without tradition, ing, and blasphemed the name of Christ. without well established citizens—that Whereupon Paul shook his raiment, as the toil-worn Jewish wanderer made an expressive act of shaking off the his way. He entered Corinth as he had guilt of their condemnation. Hence. entered Athens—a stricken and lonely fortb he would have nothing to do with worker; but here he was lost even more them. He had done his duty, and was entirely in the low and careless crowd. not to blame for their ruin. I will go
“Yet this was the city from which unto the Gentiles ! Among them he and to whose inhabitants he was to hoped to win disciples to the Lord. write thore memorable Epistles which 7. He departed thence, and entered were to influence the latest history of into a certain man's house. Probably the world. How little we understand Justus had already confessed faith in what is going on around us! How Jesus, and offered shelter to Paul. little did the wealthy magnates of Cor- 8. And Crispus, the chief ruler of inih suspect that the main historic sig- the synagogue, believed. The most promnificance of their city during this epoch inent man among the Jews thus turned would be centred in the disputes con- to the Lord; and his entire household ducted in a petty synagogue, and the followed his example, and were bapthoughts written in a tent maker's cell tized; as did also many of the Corinthby that bent and weary Jew, so solitary ians. and so wretched, so stained with the 9. Then spake the Lord in a vision, dust of travel, so worn with the attacks &c. He gave Paul special encourageof sickness and persecution! How true ment to continue his labors there. Here is it that the living world often knows was a mission ; here there would be a