Luke 21* Christ commends a poor widow. (1-4) His prophecy. (5-28)Christ exhorts to watchfulness. (29-38)1-4 From the offering of this poor widow, learn that what werightly give for the relief of the poor, and the support ofGod's worship, is given unto God; and our Saviour sees withpleasure whatever we have in our hearts to give for the reliefof his members, or for his service. Blessed Lord! the poorest ofthy servants have two mites, they have a soul and a body;persuade and enable us to offer both unto thee; how happy shallwe be in thine accepting of them! 5-28 With much curiosity those about Christ ask as to the timewhen the great desolation should be. He answers with clearnessand fulness, as far as was necessary to teach them their duty;for all knowledge is desirable as far as it is in order topractice. Though spiritual judgements are the most common ingospel times, yet God makes use of temporal judgments also.Christ tells them what hard things they should suffer for hisname's sake, and encourages them to bear up under their trials,and to go on in their work, notwithstanding the opposition theywould meet with. God will stand by you, and own you, and assistyou. This was remarkably fulfilled after the pouring out of theSpirit, by whom Christ gave his disciples wisdom and utterance.Though we may be losers for Christ, we shall not, we cannot belosers by him, in the end. It is our duty and interest at alltimes, especially in perilous, trying times, to secure thesafety of our own souls. It is by Christian patience we keeppossession of our own souls, and keep out all those impressionswhich would put us out of temper. We may view the prophecybefore us much as those Old Testament prophecies, which,together with their great object, embrace, or glance at somenearer object of importance to the church. Having given an ideaof the times for about thirty-eight years next to come, Christshows what all those things would end in, namely, thedestruction of Jerusalem, and the utter dispersion of the Jewishnation; which would be a type and figure of Christ's secondcoming. The scattered Jews around us preach the truth ofChristianity; and prove, that though heaven and earth shall passaway, the words of Jesus shall not pass away. They also remindus to pray for those times when neither the real, nor thespiritual Jerusalem, shall any longer be trodden down by theGentiles, and when both Jews and Gentiles shall be turned to theLord. When Christ came to destroy the Jews, he came to redeemthe Christians that were persecuted and oppressed by them; andthen had the churches rest. When he comes to judge the world, hewill redeem all that are his from their troubles. So fully didthe Divine judgements come upon the Jews, that their city is setas an example before us, to show that sins will not passunpunished; and that the terrors of the Lord, and histhreatenings against impenitent sinners, will all come to pass,even as his word was true, and his wrath great upon Jerusalem. 29-38 Christ tells his disciples to observe the signs of thetimes, which they might judge by. He charges them to look uponthe ruin of the Jewish nation as near. Yet this race and familyof Abraham shall not be rooted out; it shall survive as anation, and be found as prophesied, when the Son of man shall berevealed. He cautions them against being secure and sensual.This command is given to all Christ's disciples, Take heed toyourselves, that ye be not overpowered by temptations, norbetrayed by your own corruptions. We cannot be safe, if we arecarnally secure. Our danger is, lest the day of death and ofjudgment should come upon us when we are not prepared. Lest,when we are called to meet our Lord, that be the furthest fromour thoughts, which ought to be nearest our hearts. For so itwill come upon the most of men, who dwell upon the earth, andmind earthly things only, and have no converse with heaven. Itwill be a terror and a destruction to them. Here see what shouldbe our aim, that we may be accounted worthy to escape all thosethings; that when the judgements of God are abroad, we may notbe in the common calamity, or it may not be that to us which itis to others. Do you ask how you may be found worthy to standbefore Christ at that day? Those who never yet sought Christ,let them now go unto him; those who never yet were humbled fortheir sins, let them now begin; those who have already begun,let them go forward and be kept humbled. Watch therefore, andpray always. Watch against sin; watch in every duty, and makethe most of every opportunity to do good. Pray always: thoseshall be accounted worthy to live a life of praise in the otherworld, who live a life of prayer in this world. May we begin,employ, and conclude each day attending to Christ's word,obeying his precepts, and following his example, that wheneverhe comes we may be found watching.
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