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dom of heaven is like unto a man that is an householder, which went out early in the morning to hire labourers into by the For to the conclusion of chap. xix., again and again made. They are the and arose out of the question of Peter quarters of the natural day, when the in ver. 27, what shall we have therefore? aliquot parts of the day's wages could be (1) Its salient point is, that the Kingdom earned, and therefore labourers would be of God is of grace, not of debt; that they waiting. The last of these is inserted for who were called first, and have laboured a special purpose, and belongs more exlongest, have no more claim upon God pressly to the instruction of the parable. than those who were called last : but that (5) The hire bears an important part in to all, His covenant promise shall be ful- the interpretation. I cannot with Stier filled in its integrity. (2) Its primary (whose comment on this parable I think application is to the Apostles, who had much inferior to his usual remarks) supasked the question. They were not to be pose it to mean “the promise of this life.” of such a spirit, as to imagine, with the attached to godliness. His anxiety to esmurmurers in ver. 11, that they should cape from the danger of eternal life being have something super-eminent (because matter of wages, has here misled him. they were called first, and had laboured But there is no such danger in the interlongest) above those who in their own pretation of the parable which I believe to time were to be afterward called (see be the true one. The hire is the promise 1 Cor. xv. 8–11). (3) Its secondary ap- of the covenant, uniformly represented by plications are to all those to whom such our Lord and His Apostles as a 'reward, a comparison, of first and last called, will Matt. v. 12: Luke vi. 35; xiv. 14: John apply :---nationally, to the Jews, who were iv. 36: 1 Cor. iii. 14: 2 John 8: Heb. first called, and with a definite covenant, x. 35; xi. 6 al., reckoned indeed of free and the Heathens who came in after- grace: but still, forensically considered, wards, and on a covenant, though really answering to, and represented by, ‘wages,' made (see Jer. xxxi. 33: Zech. viii. 8: as claimed under God's covenant with man Heb. viii. 10), yet not so open and pro- in Christ. (The freeness and sovereignty minent :-individually, to those whose call of God's gift of grace is pointedly set behas been in early life, and who have spent fore us in ver. 14, It is my will to give their days in God's active service, and &c.) This hire I believe then to be eternal those who have been summoned later ; life, or, in other words, God HIMSELF and to various other classes and persons (John xvii. 3). And this, rightly underbetween whom comparison, not only of stood, will keep us from the error of time, but of advantages, talents, or any supposing, that the parable involves a deother distinguishing characteristic, can be claration that all who are saved will be in made: that none of the first of these can an absolute equality. This gift is, and will boast themselves over the others, nor look be to each man, as he is prepared to refor higher place and greater reward, inas- ceive it. To the envious and murmurers, much as there is but one “gift” of God it will be as the fruit that turned to ashes according to the covenant of grace. And in the mouth : by their own unchristian the “ first” of these are to see that they spirit they will lose the things that they do not by pride and self-righteousness be- have wrought” (2 John 8), and their recome the “last,” or worse--be rejected, as ward will be null : in other words, they nationally were the Jews; for among the will, as the spiritual verity necessitates, many that are called, there are few chosen not enter into that life to which they were -many who will fail of the reward in the called. God's covenant is fulfilled to them end. (4) In subordination to this leading – they have received their denarius—but idea and warning of the Parable must the from the essential nature of the hire" circunstances brought before us be in. are disqualified from enjoying its use : for terpreted. The day and its hours are not as Gregory the Great remarks, “the kingany fixed time, such as the duration of the dom of heaven none who murmurs, inworld, or our Lord's life on earth, or the herits: none who inherits, can murmur.' life of man, exclusively : but the natural To those who have known and loved God, period of earthly work as applied to the it will be, to each, as he has advanced in various meanings of which the parable is the spiritual life, joy unspeakable and full capable. The various times of hiring are of glory. 1. early in the morning] not to be pressed as each having an ex- See Jer. xxxv. 14, and other places. clusive meaning in each interpretation : labourers] in the primary mennings of they serve to spread the calling over the the parable, ‘ apostles, prophets, ministers:' various periods, and to shew that it is distinct from the vines in the vineyard.
his vineyard. 2 And when he had agreed with the labourers for a ' penny a day, he sent them into his vineyard. 3 And he went out about the third hour, and saw others standing idle in the marketplace, 4 and said unto them; Go ye also into the vineyard, and whatsoever is right I will give you. And they went their way. 5 Again he went out about the sixth and ninth hour, and did likewise. 6 And about the eleventh hour he went out, and found others standing sidle], and saith unto them, Why stand ye here all the day idle ? 7 They say unto him, Because no man hath hired us. He saith unto them, Go ye also into the vineyard [t and whatsoever is right, that shall ye receive]. 8 So when even was come, the lord of the vineyard saith unto his steward, Call the labourers, and give them their hire, beginning from the last unto the first. 9 And when they came that were hired about the eleventh hour, they received every man a * penny.
10 But when the first came, they supposed that they should have received more; and they likewise received every man a r penny. 11 And when they had received it, they murmured against the a good man of the house, 12 saying, These last have wrought but one hour, and thou hast made them equal unto us, which have borne the burden and heat of render, denarius.
omit. u render, householder, as in ver. 1, where the word is the same. But inasmuch as every workman is himself “ The market-place of the world is consubject to the treatment of the husband- trasted with the vineyard of the Kingdom man (see John xv. 1, 2), and every man in of God : the greatest man of business in the Kingdom of God is in some sense or worldly things is a mere idle gazer, if he other a worker on the rest, the distinction has not yet entered on the true work which is not to be pressed—the parable ranges alone is worth any thing or gains any reover both comparisons. vineyard] ward.” Stier. No positive stipulation not the Jewish church only, as Greswell, is made with these second, but they are Parables, iv. 355 ff., maintains. The Jewish to depend on the justice of the houseChurch was God's vineyard especially and holder. They might expect fths of a detypically ; His Church in all ages is His narius. From the same dialogue being true vineyard, see John xv. 1. 2.] implied at the sixth and ninth hour (“ he The denarius a day was the pay of a Roman did likewise") the “ whatsoever is right” soldier in Tiberius' time, a few years before is probably in each case the corresponding this parable was uttered. Polybius (but part of the denarius, at least in their exin illustrating the exceeding fertility and pectation ; so that it cannot be said that cheapness of the country) mentions that no covenant was made. 8.] By the the charge for a day's entertainment in Mosaic law (Deut. xxiv. 15) the wages of the inns in Cisalpine Gaul was half an as, an hired servant were to be paid him be= pth of the denarius. This we may fore night. This was at the twelfth hour, therefore regard as liberal pay for the day's or sunset: see ver. 12. I do not think the work.
3, 4.] The third hour, at steward must be pressed as having a the equinox our 9 a.m., and in summer 8, spiritual meaning. If it has, it represents was sometimes called “ the height of the Christ (see Heb. ii. 6, and ch. xi. 27). market,” – when the market was fullest.
beginning is not merely expletive,
c ch. xix. 30.
the day. 13 But he answered one of them, and said,
Friend, I do thee no wrong: didst not thou agree with for a w penny? 14 Take that thine is, and go thy way: *I will give unto this last, even as unto thee. 15 a Is it not a Rom. ix. 21. lawful for me to do what I will with mine own?
by Is b Deut. xv, 9. thine eye evil, because I am good ? 16 c So the last shall.ch. Wir be first, and the first last [: z d for many be called, but few a ch. xxii. 14. chosen].
17 And Jesus going up to Jerusalem took the twelve disciples apart in the way, and said unto them, 18 e Behold, e ch. xvi. 21. we go up to Jerusalem ; and the Son of man shall be betrayed unto the chief priests and unto the scribes, and they shall condemn him to death, 19 f and shall deliver him to sch. wxvii,.. the Gentiles to mock, and to scourge, and to crucify him : and the third day he shall rise again.
20 Then came to him the mother of & Zebedee's children g ch. iv. 21. with her sons, worshipping him, and desiring a certain thing of him.
21 And he said unto her, What wilt thou ? more properly, Comrade, or Companion : see ch. xxii. 12; xxvi. 50. w render, denarius.
X render, It is my will to give. y render, Or is.
z omitted in several of the oldest authorities.
Acts iii. 13.
but definite, as in Luke xxiii. 5. 13, not be chosen. In ch. xxiii. 14 the refer. 14.] Friend, at first sight a friendly word ence is different. merely, assumes a more solemn aspect 17--19.] Mark x. 32–34. Luke xviii. when we recollect that it is used in ch. 31-34. FULLER DECLARATION OF His xxii. 12 to the guest who had not the SUFFERINGS AND DEATH-revealing His wedding garment; and in ch. xxvi. 50 by being delivered to the Gentiles--and (but our Lord to Judas. go thy way hardly in Matthew only) His crucifixion. See denotes (as Stier in his 1st edn.) expulsion the note on the more detailed account in and separation from the householder and Mark. his employment: it is here only a word 20—28.] AMBITIOUS REQUEST OF THE of course, commanding him to do what a
OF ZEBEDEE ; paid labourer naturally should do.
OUR LORD'S REPLY. Mark X. 35-45; 15. evil] here envious : so also Prov. not related by Luke. This request seems xxvii. 22. 16.] The last were first, to have arisen froin the promise made to as equal to the first; first, in order of the twelve in ch. xix. 28. In Mark's acpayment ; first, as superior to the first count, the two brethren themselves make (no others being brought into comparison), the request. But the narration in the in that their reward was more in pro- text is the more detailed and exact; and portion to their work, and not marred by the two immediately coincide, by our Lord a murmuring spirit. The first were last addressing His answer to the two Apostles in these same respects.
The last (ver. 22). The difference is no greater words of the verse belong not so much to than is perpetually to be found in narrathe parable, as to the first clause, and are tions of the same fact, persons being often placed to account for its being as there related to have done themselves what, acdescribed; for, while multitudes are called curately speaking, they did by another. into the vineyard, many, by murmuring The mother's name was Salome ;-she and otherwise disgracing their calling, had followed our Lord from Galilee,will nullify it, and so, although first by and afterwards witnessed the crucifixion, profession and standing, will not be of the see Mark xv. 40. Probably the two brenumber of the elect: although called, will thren had directed this request through
h ch. xix. 98.
I Acts xii. 2.
Kom viii. 17.
h She saith unto him, Grant that these
two sons my
may sit, the one on thy right hand, and the other on a the left,
in thy kingdom. 22 But Jesus answered and said, Ye ich. xxvi. 80, know not what
able to drink of ithe cup k Luke xii. 50 that I shall drink of [b and to be baptized with k the baptism
that I am baptized with] ? They say unto him, We are
able. 23 And he saith unto them, 1 Ye shall drink indeed Camin. of my cup [e and be baptized with the baptism that I am bap
tized with] : but to sit on my right hand, and on my left, m ch. xxv. 34. is not mine to m give, but it shall be given to them for
whom it is prepared of my Father. 24 And when the ten heard it, they were moved with indignation against the two brethren. 25 But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise
authority upon them. 26 But nit shall not be so among hark ik: 35: you : but whosoever will be great among you, let him be
& read, thy.
n 1 Pet. v. 3.
och. xxiii. 11.
their mother, because they remembered more the inner and spiritual bitterness, the rebuke which had followed their for. resembling the agony of the Lord Himself, mer contention about precedence.
--and the baptism, which is an important 21.] The places close to the throne were addition in Mark, more the outer accesthose of honour, as in Josephus, where sion of persecution and trial,-through speaking of Saul, he describes Jonathan which we must pass to the Kingdom of his son as seated on his right hand, and God. On the latter image see Ps. xlii. 7; Abner the captain of the host on his left. lxix. 2 ; cxxiv. 4. Stier rightly obIn a Rabbinical work, it is said, that serves that this answer of our Lord conGod will seat the King Messiah at his tains in it the kernel of the doctrine of the right hand, and Abraham at his left. Sacraments in the Christian Church : see One of these brethren, John, the beloved Rom. vi. 1–7: 1 Cor. xii. 13, and note on disciple, had his usual place close to the Luke xii. 50. Some explain their Lord, John xiii. 23: the other was among answer as if they understood the Lord to the chosen Three (this request hardly can speak of drinking out of the royal cup, imply in their minds any idea of the rejec. and washing in the royal ewer : but the tion of Peter from his peculiar post of words are ye able to drink, and we are honour by the rebuke in ch. xvi. 23, for abie, indicating a difficulty, preclude this. since then had happened the occurrences
23.] The one of these brethren was in ch. xvii. 1-8, and especially ib. v. the first of the Apostles to drink the cup 24–27). Both were called Boanerges, or of suffering, and be baptized with the bapthe sons of thunder, Mark ii. 17.
tism of blood, Acts xii. 1, 2: the other They thought the kingdom of God was had the longest experience among them immediately to appear, Luke xix. 11. of a life of trouble and persecution.
22.] One at least of these brethren I'he last clause of the verse may be un. saw the Lord on His Cross-on His right derstood as in the text, “is not mine to and left hand the crucified thieves. Bitter give, but it shall be given to them for indeed must the remembrance of this am- whom it is prepared of my Father;' so bitious prayer have been at that moment ! Meyer, al.; or, 'is not mine to give, except Luther remarks, The flesh ever seeks to to those for whom,' &c. So Chrysostom be glorified, before it is crucified : exalted, and others. If however we understand before it is abased.'. The cup' is a after but it shall be given by Me,' the frequent Scripture image for joy or sor- two interpretations come
to the same. row : see Ps. xxiii. 5 ; cxvi. 13 : Isa. li. 22:
26 – 28.] great first, i. e. Matt. xxvi. 42. It here seems to signify in the next life, let him be minister
your minister ; 27 P and whosoever will be d chief among oshmavali.. you, e let him be your servant : 28 9 even as the Son of Luke 1x}i. 27. man came not to be ministered unto, s but to minister, and tisu im * to give his life a ransom " for many.
29 And as they departed from Jericho, a great multitude Tit. I. 16. followed him. 30 And, behold, 'two blind men sitting by the jo
11. Dan ix.
1 Pet. i. 19.
v ch. ix. 27.
read, shall be.
and servant here. Thus also the came, Lord to have healed one blind man (as in ver. 28, applies to the coming of the Son Luke) on entering Jericho, and another of man in the flesh only. & ransom (Bartimæus, as in Mark) on leaving it,for many, is a plain declaration of the and St. Matthew to bave, ‘with his charac. sacrificial and vicarious nature of the death teristic brevity in relating miracles,' comof our Lord. The principal usages (in the
bined both these in one. But then, what Greek Scriptures) of the word rendered becomes of St. Matthew's assertion, “ ransom are the following :-(1) a payment they departed from Jericho ?” Can we as equivalent for a life destroyed; (2) the possibly imagine, that the Evangelist, price of redeunption of a slave; (3) pro- having both facts before him, could compitiation for.' many here is equi- bine them and preface them with what he valent to "all” 1 Tim. ii. 6. No stress is must know to be inaccurate? It is just to be laid on this word “many” as not
thus that the Harmonists utterly destroy being “all” here; it is placed in oppo- the credibility of the Scripture narrative. sition to the one life which is given--the Accumulate upon this the absurd improone for many—and not with any distinction babilities involved in two men, under the from “ all." (I may observe once for all, same circumstances, addressing our Lord that in the usage of these two words, as in the same words at so very short an applied to our redemption by Christ, “all” interval,- and we may be thankful that is the OBJECTIVE, “many” the SU BJECTIVE biblical criticism is at length being emandesignation of those for whom Christ died. cipated from ‘forcing narratives into acHe died for all, as outward matter of fact; cordance. See notes on Mark. but as matter of individual participation, JERICHO, 150 stadia (18 rom. miles) n.E. the great multitude whom no man can of Jerusalem (Jos. B. J. iv. 8. 3), and number, "many,” will be the saved by Him 60 (7.2 rom. miles) w. from the Jordan in the end.) * As the Son of man came to (Jos. ibid.), in the tribe of Benjamin (Josh. give His life for many and to serve many, xviii. 21), near the borders of Ephraim so ye, being many, should be to each one (Josh. xvi. 7). The environs were like an the object of service and self-denial.' oasis surrounded by high and barren lime. 29-34.] HEALING OF
stone mountains,-well watered and ferMEN ON HIS DEPARTURE FROM JERICHO. tile, rich in palm-trees (Deut. xxxiv. 3: Mark X. 46-52. Luke xviii. 35–43; Judg. i. 16; iii. 13), roses (Ecclus. xxiv. xix. 1, with however some remarkable dif- 14), and balsam (Jos. Antt. iv. 6. 1 al.). ferences. In the much more detailed ac. After its destruction by Joshua, its rebuildcount of St. Mark, we have but one blind ing was prohibited under a curse (Josh. man, mentioned by name as Bartimæus; vi. 26), which was incurred by Hiel the St. Luke also relates it of only one, and Bethelite in the days of Ahab (1 Kings xvi. besides says that it was “ as he was come 34): i. e. he fortified it, for it was an nigh to Jericho.” The only fair account inhabited city before (see Judg. iii. 13 : of such differences is, that they existed in 2 Sam. x. 5). We find it the seat of a the sources from which each Evangelist school of the prophets, 2 Kings ii. 4 ff. took his narrative. This later one is After the captivity we read of it, Ezra easily explained, from the circumstance ii. 34; Neh. vii. 36: and in 1 Macc. ix. having happened close to Jericho-in 50 we read that Jonathan strengthened two accounts, just on leaving it-in the its fortifications. It was much embellished third, on approaching to it: but he must by Herod the Great, who had a palace be indeed a slave to the letter, who there (Jos. Antt. xvi. 5. 2 al.), and at this would stumble at such discrepancies, and time was one of the principal cities of not rather see in them the corroborating Palestine, and the residence of a chief pub. coincidence of testimonies to the fact it. lican on account of the balsam trade self. Yet some strangely suppose our (Luke xix. 1). At present there is on or