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52 them, and carried up into heaven. And they wor
shipped (n) him, and returned to Jerusalem, with 53 great joy: And were continually in the temple,
praising and blessing God. Amen.
(n) Here is an instance of religious worship paid to Christ after he was taken out of the fight of his disciples, and had ascended up into heaven: for, though the word is used in several places for nothing more than that respect which is usually paid to superiors, yet here the phrase is necessarily confined by the occasion and circumstances of it to a religious sense, and cannot with propriety be taken in any other. See Aas vii. 59.
N the beginning (a) was the Word, and the Word
was with God, and the Word was God. The 3 same was in the beginning with God. All things
were made by him; and without him was not 4 any thing made that was made (b). In him was Ś life, and the life was the light of men. And the
light shineth in darkness, and the darkness compre
hended it not (c). 6 There was a man sent from God, wliose name was 7 John. The same came for a witness, to bear witness
of the light, that all men through him might believe.
(a) From eternity,
(6) See the first chapter of the epistle to the Hebrews, and com. pare it with these three verses. See also, Col. i. 15, 16, 17
(c) The darkness refused to be enlightened. Men chofe darkness rather than light, because their principles were clouded and obscured, and their deeds were evil, Chap. iii, 19.
8 He was not that light, but was sent to bear witness of 9 that light. That was the true light, which lighteth 10 every man that cometh into the world. He was in
the world, and the world was made by him, and the 11 world know him not (d). He came unto his own, 12 and his own received him not (e). But as many as
received him, to them gave he power to become the
sons of God (f), even to them that believe on his 13. name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the
will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. 14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among
us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only-begotten of the Father) full of grace and
truth. 15 John bare witness of him, and cried, saying, Thiş
was he of whom I spake, He that cometh after me, 16 is preferred before me; for he was before, me (8).
And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for 17 grace. For the law was given by Moses, but grace 18 and truth came by Jesus Christ(h). No man hath seen
(d) Acknowledged him not, but rejected him.
(e) His own people of Israel, that very people whom he had all along defended and directed, before he took our nature upon him, and now appeared as their Messiah and Redeemer, of whose coming they had at this very time the most earnest expectation, according to what they found foretold by their own prophets in the scriptures of the Old Testament,
(f) Sons of God, not by a natural, but a spiritual birth; not as the Jews, who claimed the special favour of God, by being defcended from Abraham, (John viii. 33.) but in consequence of their taking upon themselves the gospel covenant; which is called in the foregoing verse, believing on the name of Chrift,
(g) He was before me in his divine nature.
(h) To Moses and the prophets God gave his Spirit in a certain degree and proportion : but to Christ without bounds or measure ; John iii. 34. and instead of the limited dispensation of Moses, which, gracious as it was, was but a type and shadow of the Christian revefation, he now gives us that which is the true and real substance of
God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is
in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him. 19
And this is the record of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem, to ask him, 20 Who art thou? And he confessed, and denied not ; 21 but confessed, I am not the Christ. And they asked
him, What then? Art thou Elias (i)? And he faith, I am not. Art thou that prophet? And he answered,
Then said they unto him, Who art thou? that we may give an answer to them that sent us: 23 What fayest thou of thyself? He said (k), I the
voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight
the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Esaias. 24. And they which were fent, were of the Pharisees, 25 And they asked him, and said unto him, Why bap
tizeft thou then, if thou be not that Christ, nor Eli26 as, neither that Prophet? John answered them,
saying, I baptize with water(i): but there standeth 27 one among you, whom ye know not; He it:is who
coming after me, is preferred before, me, whose 28 shoes-latchet I am not worthy to unloose (m). These
things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan, where
John was baptizing. 29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him,
and faith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh 30 away the fin of the world. This is he, of whom I
religion, and deserves to be distinguished by the name of grace or favour, health or strength, in the most eminent and superlative fense.
(i) Art thou Elias, who, we expect, is to appear again in the world before the coming of Christ; or, art thou Jeremiah, or another of the prophets, restored to life?
(k) Though I am not Elias in perfon, yet I have the very fame office, as it is described by Isaiah xl. 3.
(?). I baprize, not to establish my own authority, but to make disciples for ihe Messiah, who will
appear, and is infinitely fuperior to me; more so than the greatest person in
world is to the meanest servant in his family. (m) See Matt. iii. 11. Note.
faid, After me cometh a man, which is preferred be31 fore me: for he was before me (n). And I knew him
not: but that he should be made manifest to Ifrael, 32 therefore am I come baptizing with water. And John
bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from 33 heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him. And I
knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me (o), Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit defcending, and reniaining on him,
the fame is he which baptizeth with the holy Ghost. 34 And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God. • 35
Again the next day after, John stood, and two of 36 his disciples : And looking upon Jesus as he walked, 37 he faith, Behold the Lamb of God. And the two
disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus, 38 Then Jesus turned, and saw them following, and
saith unto them, What seek ye? They said unto hin,
Rabbi, (which is to say, being interpreted, Mafter) 39 where dwellest thou? He said unto them, Come
and fee. They came and saw where he dwelt, and
abode with him that day: for it was (p) about the tenth 40 hour. One of the two which heard John speak, and
followed him, was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother. 41 He first findeth his own brother Simon, and faith un
to him, We have found the Mellias (9), which is, be42 ing interpreted, the Christ. And he brought him
to Jesus. And when Jesus beheld him, he said,
(n) I am to be confidered but as his forerunner and servant ; whereas his dignity is supreme, and his existence from eternity, Verse 1.
(o) Though I knew that the Messiah was about to appear, yet I had not a perfect knowledge that Jesus was he, until it was revealed to me that he should be declared by the descent of the Spirit. See Matt. iii. 14.
(p) Two hours before sun-fet.
(9) Messiah, or Christ, fignifies anointed; that is, fet apart for the high office of Saviour of the world. N