Matthew 25

Went forth; according to the custom in the marriage ceremonies of the East, to meet and escort the bridegroom, with lighted torches, to the house where the ceremony was to be performed.

Tarried; from some cause of delay.

There was a cry made; that is, it was announced.

His goods; his property.

A talent was a large sum of money.

Into the joy of thy lord; into his confidence and favor.

It is noticeable that our Lord makes the man who had received the one talent, the unfaithful servant, in order to show us that, though our means of usefulness may be circumscribed, we are under an obligation, none the less imperious, faithfully to improve them.

In his glory; to judge the world at the last day.

Our Savior teaches, by the preceding instructions, that a heart of kindness and compassion, and a sincere regard for the welfare and happiness of others, totally diverse from the spirit of unfeeling selfishness which reigns generally in the world, is necessary to prepare us for heaven. By what means past sins were to be remitted, and the human heart formed into the new image which he thus describes, was more fully explained by his apostles, after he had risen. In fact, in all our Savior's conversation and instructions, it seems to have been his design simply to bring this image of moral excellence to view, and to give it a permanent and conspicuous position before mankind. This was a necessary preliminary step. The way was afterwards revealed, through the writings and preaching of the apostles, by which this new spiritual condition was to be attained,—viz., by reliance upon the death of Christ, as an expiation for past sins, and upon the power of the Divine Spirit to work the great change in the desires and tendencies of the soul.

Everlasting, punishment,—life eternal. The duration of the happiness of the righteous and of the misery of the wicked, is, in the original, expressed by the same word; and language has no stronger term with which to indicate limitless duration.

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