Imágenes de páginas

into the fire. That he baptized them with waterCh1ptsr Ve1% to repentance; but a mightier was coming, who would baptize them with the Holy Ghost, and within?. (I cannot discover that Jesus ever baptized at all; and what is meant by baptizing with fire, I know not; unless it be the inquisitorial method practised by the catholics upon the Jews at their Auto de Fe's.) He adds—' Whose fan is "*• H

* in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his 'floor, and gather his wheat into the garner:

* but he will burn up the chaff with unquench'able fire. ' Mark's record of John, is nearly the fame, but the exceptionable part of baptizing with fire, is omitted: it fays simply—' And he

* shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost.' Luke's account of this matter is more copious; he tells us the time when John began to teach and baptize, ch. iii. v. i. * Now in the fifteenth year of

* the reign of Tiberius Cæsar, Pontius Pilate be'ing governor of Judea, and Herod being te

* trarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip te*

* trarch of Ituria and of the region of Trachoni* 'tis; and Lysanias the tetrarch of Abilene;

* Annas and Caiaphas being the high priests; 1 the word of God came unto John the son of i Zacharias in the wilderness. And he came 'into all the country about Jordan, preaching 'the baptism of repentance for the remission of 'sins,' &c. Here is some additional matter which we have neither in, Matthew or Mark,


Chapter Verscthe people, publicans, and soldiers, ask him questions which he answers: they being doubtful if he was the Christ or not; he sets them right in that matter—saying—' I indeed baptize you 'with water: but one mightier than I cometh,* '&c.—he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, 'and with fire.' &c. St. John gives us new matter ch. i. v. 19. '" And this is the record of 'John (the Baptist) when the Jews sent priests 'and Levites from Jerusalem, to ask him, Who

* art thou? He confessed, and denied not, but

* confessed, I am not the Christ. And they asked 'him—What then? Art thou Elias? and he 'faith, I am not. Art thou that prophet? and 'he answered, No. Then said they unto him

* Who art thou?' John, after some other interrogatories, answers—' I baptize with water: but

* there standeth one among you, whom ye know

* not; he it is who coming after me is preferred 'before me,' &c. He fays nothing of baptizing, with the Holy Ghost or with fire: nor doth h appear that they discovered or even made any enquiry about Jesus at that time; but the next day John pointed him out to the people. We return now to Matthew, and proceed with his account of the baptism of Jesus by John.

ill. 13 * Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan un

14 ' to John to be baptized of him. But John for

'bad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee,

* and contest thou to me t And Jesus answering, 'said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thusChapt" v1r&

'it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then x6

'he suffered him. And Jesus, when he was bap

'tized, went up straightway out of the water:

'and lo, the Heavens were opened unto him,

'and he saw the spirit of God descending like a

'dove, and lighting upon him. And lo, a voice 17

'from Heaven, saying, This is my beloved son,

'in whom I am well pleased.' Mark and Luke's

account are, in substance, the same: John is

more explicit, ch. i. v. 29. ' The next day John

'seeth Jesus coming unto him, and faith, Be

'hold the lamb of God which taketh away the

1 sin of the world: this is he of whom I said,

* after me cometh a man which is preferred be'fore me; for he was before me: and I knew

* him not; but that he sliould be made manifest 'to Israel; therefore I am come baptizing with

* water. And John bare record, saying, I saw 'the spirit descending from Heaven, like a dove, 'and it abode upon him: and I knew him not: 'but he that sent me to baptize with water, the 1 same said unto me, upon whom thoujhalt see the 'spirit descending and remaining on him, the same 'is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost. And 'I saw and bare record that this is the Son of 1 God.' If John was so well informed, and so clear and explicit in his account of the matter as he here seems to be: how happened he, very soon after, to make the following enquiry of Jesus— Chapter Versesus—' Art tllOU he that should CC-lfle, Of do Wtf

'look for another?' Matt. ch. xi. v. 2, g*j We will now revert to Matthew's account of what followed the baptism.—' Then was Jesus

* led up of the spirit into the wilderness, to be *• tempted of the devil.' After fasting there forty days and forty nights, Satan endeavours, with various temptations, to seduce him: he takes' him up into an exceeding high mountain, and

It. % * sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world,

'and the glory of them : and faith unto him—

9 ' All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt

10 1 fall down and worship me. Then faith Jesus 6 unto him—Get thee hence, Satan: for it is

11 c written; Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, e and him only shalt thou serve. Then the devtf 'leaveth him, and behold, angels came and mi* 'nistered unto him.' This must have been a very ignorant devil: if there was any efficacy in baptism, he chose an improper time; and how he attained the power of taking the Son of God up to a pinnacle of the temple, &c. I cannot conceive. From sacred history we learn, that he sometimes threw the unfortunate sons of men

* In the records of St. Matthew and St. John, we perceive a material difference. The former tells us that John the Baptist knew Jesus to be the Christ, before he baptized him. But the latter tells us that he did not know Jesus till ester he had baptized him that he saw ' the spirit de

* scending and remaining on. him/


upon the ground, Sec. but we never hear of hisChapter vttti taking them up into the air.—Mark fays—' And

* immediately (after the baptism) the spirit driv'eth him into the wilderness: and he was there

* in the wilderness forty days tempted of Satanj 'and was with the wild beasts, and the angels 'ministered unto him.' Luke fays much the fame as Matthew relative to the fasting and temptations, but has this remarkable conclusion—1 And when the devil had ended all the ■ temptation, he departed from him (Jesus) for 'a season.' What Luke means by departing from him for a season, 1 know not. We hear of no more attacks made by the devil upon Jesus, unless that may be construed as such, which wa$ made in the person of St. Peter. Vide Matthew, ch. xvi. v. 22, 23. John says not a word of the wilderness, temptations, or the forty days spent in it. On the contrary, he proceeds to the election of two disciples upon the day following his baptism; two others upon the following day; the marriage in Cana upon the third day; and so proceeds regularly with the history of Jesus. We will now go on1 with St. Matthew's account.—' Now when Jesus had heard that John iv. 12 'was cast into prison, he departed into Galilee.' (Luke, who seems most conversant with John's history, tells us that he was _cast into prison for having reproached Herod the tetrarch with several enormities, particularly that of keeping


« AnteriorContinuar »