1883 Haydock Douay Rheims Bible

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Hebrews 1:1 God having spoken at different times and in many ways, in times past, to the fathers, by the prophets: last of all,

At different times,{ Ver. 1. Multifariam, polumeros; which signifies, that God revealed the coming of his Son as it were by parts and parcels, or by degrees, first revealing some things and then others.|} and in many ways. The first word signifies that God revealed the incarnation of his Son, as it were, by parcels, and by degrees, at different times, and to different persons, to Adam, to Abraham, to Moses, to David, etc. The latter word expresseth the different ways and manners, as by angels, by immediate inspirations, and revelations, by types, figures, and ceremonies.{ Ver. 1. Novissimè, ep echatou, which reading Dr. Wells prefers before that in the ordinary Greek copies, which have ep echaton ton emeron, followed by the Protestant translation and Mr. N.|} --- Last of all, by his Son, this true, natural, eternal Son, of whom we must always take notice, that being both true God, and true man, by the union of the divine and human nature to one and the same divine person, St. Paul speaks of him sometimes as God, sometimes mentions what applies to him as man, sometimes as our Redeemer, both God and man. This must necessarily happen in speaking of Christ; but when we find things that cannot be understood of one that is a pure or mere man only, or that cannot be true but of him, who is truly God, these are undeniable proofs against the errors of the Arians and Socinians. (Witham)
Hebrews 1:2 In these days hath spoken to us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the world:

Whom he hath appointed heir of all things. Heir is here not taken for one that succeeds another at his death, but for the same as Master or Lord. And though Christ be inseparably God and man, yet this applies to him, as man, because, as God, he was not constituted in time, but was always from eternity, Lord of all things, with the Father and the Holy Ghost: by whom also he made the world. That is, all created beings, and in such a manner, that all creatures were equally produced by the three divine persons. See the annotations on (John 1:3.) (Witham)
Hebrews 1:3 *Who being the splendour of his glory, and the figure of his substance, and upholding all things by the word of his power, making purgation of sins, sitteth on the right hand of the majesty on high:

Wisdom 7:26.
Who being the spendour,{ Ver. 3. Splendor gloriae, apaugasma, refulgentia, effulgentia, etc.|} or brightness of his glory, not as beams or rays are derived from a lightsome body, but by a necessary and eternal communication of the same substance, and of the whole light; in which sense the council of Nice[Nicaea] understood the eternal Son of God to be light of light. This partly helps us to conceive the eternal generation of the Son from the Father, because the brightness is at the same time with the sun, though all comparisons fall short of this mystery. (Witham) --- We may here observe the two natures of Christ. As God, he is the Creator of all things; as man, he is constituted heir of the goods of God. Not content to possess the inheritance of his Father in his own person, he will have us as coheirs to share it also with him. May we so live as to hear one day that happy sentence: Come, ye blessed of my Father, etc. --- And the figure of his substance.{ Ver. 3. Figura substantiae, charakter tes upostaseos. Hypostasis signifies persona, subsistentia, and also substantia.|} In the Greek is the character of his substance; which might be translated, the express image. There are different ways by which a thing may be said to be a figure or image of another: here it is taken for such a representation of the substance of the Father, that though the Father and the Son be distinct persons, and the Son proceed from the Father, yet he is such a figure and image, as to have the same nature and substance with the Father, as the Catholic Church always believed and declared against the ancient heretics, and particularly against the Arians. Their words may be partly seen in Petavius, lib. 2:de Trin. Hebrews 11.; lib. 4:chap. 6.; lib. vi. Hebrews 6., being too prolix for these short notes. And this may be understood by the following words concerning the Son: and upholding or preserving all things by the word of his power. As he had said before, that all things were made by him, so all things are preserved by him, equally with the Father. See Colossians 1:16, 17. See also ver. 10. of this chapter, and the annotations on John 1:3. (Witham) --- Figure. This does not exclude the reality. So Christ's body in the eucharist, and his mystical death in the mass, though called a figure, image, or representation of Christ's visible body and sacrifice upon the cross, yet may be and is the self-same substance. (Bristow) ---Sitteth on the right hand of the majesty on high. This also may be taken to express the equality of the Son with the Father, if considered as God; but this sitting on the right hand of God, both here, in St. Mark 16. and in the apostles' creed, express what agrees with Christ, as our Redeemer, God made man by his incarnation, and who as man is made the head of his Church, the judge of the living and of the dead; and so St. Stephen said, (Acts vii.) I see the heavens open, and the Son of man standing at the right hand of God. (Witham)
Hebrews 1:4 Being made so much better than the Angels, as he hath inherited a more excellent name than they.

Being made so much better, etc. The Arians pretended from hence that Christ was made, or created. But the apostle speaks of Christ as man, and tells us that Christ, even as man, by his ascension was exalted above the Angels. --- As he hath inherited a more excellent name. That is, both the dignity and name of the Son of God, of his only Son, and of his true Son. See 1 John 5:20. (Witham)
Hebrews 1:5 For, to which of the Angels hath he said at any time: *Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again: *I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?

Psalm 2:7. --- ** 2 Kings 7:14.
Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee. These words, though commonly expounded of the eternal generation of the Son of God in the day or moment of eternity, yet may be truly applied either to Christ made man by his incarnation, or to Christ risen from the dead, as they are used by St. Paul, (Acts 13:33.) because the same Christ both these ways is the Son of God. It was the only true and natural Son of God, who was made flesh, who was made man, who rose from the dead; and the eternal Father manifested his eternal Son by his incarnation, and shewed him triumphing over death by his resurrection. --- I will be to him a father, etc. Although these words might be literally spoken of Solomon, yet in the mystical sense (chiefly intended by the Holy Ghost) they are to be understood of Christ, who in a much more proper sense is the Son of God. (Witham)
Hebrews 1:6 And again, when he introduceth the first begotten into the world, he saith: *And let all the Angels of God adore him.

Psalm 96:7.
Let all the Angels of God adore him. These words seem to be cited out of Psalm 96:7., according to the Septuagint. And they seem to be an invitation, and a command to the Angels to adore Jesus Christ, when at the end of the world he shall come to judgment. This is one of the proofs which St. Paul here brings, to shew that the Angels are inferior to Christ, because they are commanded to adore him. (Witham) --- God shews the superiority of his divine Son over the Angels, in ordering the latter to adore him. Wherever the person of Christ is, there it ought to be adored by both men and Angels, therefore in the blessed sacrament [of the Eucharist].
Hebrews 1:7 And to the Angels indeed he saith: *He that maketh his Angels, spirits: and his ministers, a flame of fire.

Psalm 103:4.
Maketh his Angels,{ Ver. 7. O poion tous Aggelous autou pneumata, not ta pneumata, the Greek article being put before Angels, and not before spirits, may seem to favour that exposition, which compares Angels to the winds and to a flame of fire.|} spirits: and his ministers, a flame of fire. St. Augustine, on Psalm ciii., and St. Gregory, hom. xxxiv. in Evang., would have the sense and construction of the words to be, who maketh the blessed spirits to be also his Angels, or messengers to announce and execute his will: (messengers and Angels signify the same in the Greek) Calvin and Beza by spirits, here understand the winds, as if the sense was only, who maketh the winds and flames of fire, that is, thunder and lightning, the messengers and instruments of his divine will, in regard of men, whom he punisheth. But this exposition agrees not with the rest of the text, nor with the design of St. Paul, which is to shew Christ above all the Angels, and above all creatures. St. Paul therefore is to be understood of Angels or angelic spirits: but then the sense may be, who maketh his Angels like the winds, or like a flame of fire, inasmuch as they execute his divine will with incredible swiftness, like the winds, and with a force and activity not unlike that of fire. (Witham)
Hebrews 1:8 But to the Son: *Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of justice is the sceptre of thy kingdom.

Psalm 44:7.
\f + \fr 1:8-9\ft But to the Son. That is, to his Son Jesus Christ, he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever, and lasts for eternity. --- A sceptre, or rod of equity, is the sceptre of thy kingdom. That is, O Christ, God and man, head of thy Church, judge of all mankind, thou shalt reward and punish all under thee with justice and equity, as thou hast loved justice, and hated iniquity: therefore God, thy God, hath anointed thee. Many here understand God first named, to be in the vocative case, and that the sense is: therefore thee, O God, thy God, hath anointed: thus Christ is called God. Others take God in both places to be in the nominative case, and to be only a repetition of God the Father; and the sense to be, thee Christ, God, thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above them that are partakers with thee: by which spiritual unction, some understand graces infused into Christ's soul at his incarnation, by a greater plenitude of graces than was ever given to any saints whom he made partakers of his glory in heaven; others expound it of an unction of greater glory given to Christ in heaven as man, because by his sufferings and merits he had destroyed and triumphed over sin. See Estius, Cornelius a Lapide, etc. (Witham)
Hebrews 1:9 Thou hast loved justice, and hated iniquity: therefore, God, thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy partners.

Hebrews 1:10 And: *Thou in the beginning, O Lord, hast found the earth: and the heavens are the works of thy hands.

Psalm 101:26.
etc. And again: thou in the beginning, O Lord, hast founded the earth, etc. The text, as well as the authority of interpreters, shew these words to be still spoken of the Son of God, of Christ, who was both true God and man. And though part of Psalm ci., from which these words are taken, contain a prayer to God for the restoring of the city of Jerusalem, yet in this psalm is chiefly signified the glory of Christ, and of his Church, which will be spread over all nations. See St. Chrysostom, Estius, Cornelius a Lapide, etc. --- As a vesture shalt thou change them, etc. The apostle, in the second verse of this chapter, had said that the world was made by the Son of God: now he tells us that all created things shall wax old like a garment, shall decay and perish, (at least from their present state and condition) shall be changed; but thou, who art both God and man, art always the same, without decay or change. (Witham) --- The apostle here applies the work of the creation to the Son of God, and thus furnishes a clear and striking proof of his divinity, against the Unitarians. To elude this proof, some of them pretend that these verses have been fraudulently added; but they are found in all the Greek copies, and in all ancient versions of this epistle. Others try to give forced interpretations to these verses, but the words are convincingly clear to all who do not purposely shut their eyes.
Hebrews 1:11 They shall perish, but thou shalt continue: and they shall all grow old as a garment:

Hebrews 1:12 And as a vesture shalt thou change them, and they shall be changed: but thou art the self-same, and thy years shall not fail.

Hebrews 1:13 But to which of the Angels said he at any time: *Sit on my right hand, until I make thy enemies thy footstool?

Psalm 109:1.; 1 Corinthians 1:25.
\f + \fr 1:13-14\ft Sit on my right hand, etc. The ancient Jews themselves understood this 109th psalm of their Messias, nor could they answer Christ's words, (Matthew 22:45.) when he shewed them by these same words, that their Messias was not only the Son of David, but also the Lord of David, of whom it was said: the Lord said to my Lord, sit thou on my right hand, until I make thy enemies thy footstool. See also (1 Corinthians 15:25.; Hebrews 10:13.) --- Are they not all ministering spirits? etc. The apostle, in this chapter, not only shews how much the dignity of Christ is superior to that of the highest Angels, but also his divinity; and that he is both true God and true man, as the ancient Fathers took notice against the Arians. (Witham) --- The holy Angels, says St. Augustine, to whose society we aspire, help us without difficulty, because their notion is pure and free. (De Civit. lib. 11. ch. XXXI.) Having then Jesus Christ for our advocate and mediator at the right hand of God, and his Angels for our guardians, ministering spirits, what can we wish for more?
Hebrews 1:14 Are they not all ministering spirits, sent to minister for those, who shall receive the inheritance of salvation?

Hebrews 2:0 The transgression of the precepts of the Son of God is far more condemnable than of those of the Old Testament, given by Angels.

Hebrews 2:1 Therefore ought we more diligently to observe the things which we have heard: lest perhaps we should let them slip.

Lest perhaps we should let them slip away,{ Ver. 1. Ne forte pereffluamus, mepote pararrnomen.|} or run out, like water out of leaking vessels, which is lost, and cannot be take up again. According to the letter it is, lest we run out; the sense must be, lest we do not sufficiently attend to these truths. (Witham)
Hebrews 2:2 For if the word, spoken by the Angels became steadfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompense of reward:

For if the word spoken by the Angels, etc. That is, if the law delivered to Moses by Angels, became firm and was to be obeyed, and the transgressors punished, how much more is this true of the new law delivered by our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and preached by his disciples that heard him, and which hath been confirmed by so many miracles, and by so many gifts of the Holy Ghost, which the believers have received? (Witham)
Hebrews 2:3 How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation? which having begun to be declared by the Lord, was confirmed to us, by them that heard,

Hebrews 2:4 *God also bearing them witness by signs, and wonders, and divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own will.

Mark 16:20.
The miraculous powers of the Almighty bestowed in the early ages[centuries] of the Church, for the establishment and propagation of the faith, became afterwards less frequent, as there was less need of them; but they have ever been totally withdrawn, as some pretend, nor has there passed a single age from that of the apostles down to the present time, in which several most evident and stupendous miracles have not been wrought in the Catholic Church.
Hebrews 2:5 For God hath not put in subjection to the Angels the world to come, of which we speak.

God hath not put in subjection to the Angels the{ Ver. 5. Orbem terrae futurum, ten oikoumenen ten mellousan.|} world to come. By the world to come, is meant the Church of Christ to the end of the world, and succeeding to the state of those who served God under the old law. The former world, under the law of Moses, might be said to be subject to Angels, by whom that law was delivered; but the church of the new law is subject to Christ, its author and publisher. (Witham)
Hebrews 2:6 But one in a certain place hath testified, saying; *What is man, that thou art mindful of him? or the son of man, that thou visitest him?

Psalm 8:5.
But one; to wit, the author of the 8th Psalm said, what is man, etc. that it, man, or mankind, considered in his own frail nature, corrupted by sin, guilty of eternal death, that thou shouldst be mindful of him, restore him to thy favour, and bestow such graces upon him? But the words of the psalm, and of St. Paul in this place, though they may be understood of every man, yet are to be taken as particularly spoken of Christ as man, or of the human nature of Christ, exalted by the real union with the divine person of the Son of God. (Witham) --- If the sacred humanity of Jesus Christ spoke in this manner, when visited by the eternal word, with what humility ought a sinner to say: What is man?
Hebrews 2:7 Thou hast made him a little lower than the Angels: thou hast crowned him with glory and honour: and hast set him over the works of thy hands.

Thou hast made him a little less than the Angels. Man's nature, even the human nature of Christ in itself, is inferior to the nature of Angels, though raised to a degree of dignity above other creatures. (Witham)
Hebrews 2:8 *Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he subjected all things to him, he left nothing not subject to him. But now we see not as yet all things subject to him.

Matthew 28:18.; 1 Corinthians 15:26.
He left nothing subject to him. He speaks here of Christ, to whom God hath made all creatures subject, whether in heaven, earth, or hell; whether they have been, or shall be hereafter, as to the judge and the head of all. --- But now we see not as yet all things subject to him. This will only be at the end of the world. At present the devils and the wicked make opposition against Christ and his elect. (Witham)
Hebrews 2:9 *But we see Jesus, who was made a little less than the Angels, for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour: that through the grace of God he might taste death for all.

Philippians 2:8.
But we see (by faith) Jesus, who as man, by his sufferings and death, was made less than the Angels, nay, despised as the last of men; now, by his glorious resurrection and ascension, and by the submission all nations pay to him, who believe in him and worship him, crowned with glory and honour. And he submitted himself willingly to all those sufferings, even to the death of the cross, that by the grace of God he might taste death for all; or, as we read in the Syriac version, for every man: therefore not only for the predestinate or the elect, who are saved. (Witham)
Hebrews 2:10 For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, who had brought many children into glory, to make the author of their salvation perfect by suffering.

For it became him, etc. He gives the reasons for which the Son of God would become man and suffer death, not that this was absolutely necessary, but a convenient means to manifest the goodness, the wisdom, and the justice of God, by the incarnation and death of his Son; that having decreed to bring many sons, or children, to eternal glory, he was pleased to send his divine Son to become man, and so to consummate the Author{ Ver. 10. Authorem salutis eorum per passionem consummare, not consummari, teleiosai.|} of man's salvation by suffering; that is to make him a perfect and consummate sacrifice of expiation for the sins of all men, and to satisfy the justice of God in the most perfect manner. (Witham) --- By suffering, Christ was to enter into his glory, (Luke 24:26.) which the apostle here calls being made perfect. (Challoner) --- In this and the above verses we may observe three different states of Jesus Christ. The first, that of his humiliation by his passion and death; the second, that of his glory at his resurrection and ascension into heaven; the third, that of his consummated glory in heaven after the last judgment. In his first state, viz. his passion, he was made not only less than the Angels, but as the last of men; novissimus virorum. In his second, all power was given to him in heaven and earth; but this power he will not fully exercise till after the general judgment, when all things, without exception, will be made subject to him; and this is the third state, the permanent state of his glory, which is never to end. To thy sovereign power, O divine Jesus, subject my mind, will, and heart, and make my hitherto rebellious heart in all things conformable to thy sacred and loving heart.
Hebrews 2:11 For both he who sanctifieth, and they who are sanctified, are all of one. For which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren, saying:

For both he who sanctifieth, (that is, our Redeemer, who sanctifieth, or has obtained sanctification for all, by sacrificing himself on the cross) and they who are sanctified, are all of one; have the same human nature, and are from the same first parent Adam, whose Son, (Christ) as man, was; on which account he calls men his brethren. See (John 20:17.; Psalm 21:23.), in which is a clear prediction of Christ's sufferings, where it is said: I will declare thy name to my brethren, etc. (Witham)
Hebrews 2:12 *I will declare thy name to my brethren: in the midst of the church will I praise thee.

Psalm 21:23.
Hebrews 2:13 And again: *I will put my trust in him: And again: *Behold I, and my children, whom God hath given me.

Psalm 17:3. --- ** Isaias 8:18.
Christians are the disciples and children of Jesus Christ, begotten upon the cross, and offered with him and through him to his Father. Happy they who ratify this offering and consummate this sacrifice, by works of mortification and penance!
Hebrews 2:14 Forasmuch then as the children were partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself in like manner partook of the same: that, *through death, he might destroy him who had the empire of death, that is to say, the devil:

Osee 13:14.; 1 Corinthians 15:51.
That, through death, he might destroy the power of him who had the empire of death, who, by tempting men to sin, had made them slaves to him and to eternal death; so that they lived always slaves to the devil, under a miserable fear of death, and liable to eternal death. (Witham)
Hebrews 2:15 And might deliver them, who, through the fear of death, were all their lifetime subject to slavery.

The devil, by exciting men to sin, made them liable to a temporal and eternal death; he was, therefore, the prince of death, both as to soul and body. Jesus Christ, the life and source of life, has by his death destroyed sin and vanquished the devil; he has, at once, triumphed over the prince of death, and death itself; and by the assurance which he has given us of eternal life, has delivered us from the terrible apprehensions of dying. To a good Christian, death is the termination of misery and the beginning of eternal happiness; why, therefore, should we be afraid to die? We ought rather, with St. Paul, to say: I desire to be dissolved, and to be with Christ.
Hebrews 2:16 For nowhere doth he take hold of the Angels: but of the seed of Abraham he taketh hold.

For nowhere doth he take hold of the Angels.{ Ver. 16. Nusquam enim Angelos apprehendit, sed semen Abrahae apprehendit, epilambanetai, assumit, vel assumpsit.|} Literally, that he apprehendeth, or layeth hold on the Angels; that is, according to the common interpretation, we nowhere find that he hath united their nature to his divine person to save them, though a great part of them had also sinned and fallen from heaven. But he taketh the seed of Abraham; that is he became man of the seed or race of Abraham, to redeem or save mankind. (Witham) --- Nowhere, etc. That is, he never took upon him the nature of Angels, but that of the seed of Abraham. (Challoner)
Hebrews 2:17 Wherefore it behoved him in all things to be made like to his brethren, that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest with God, to expiate the sins of the people.

To be made like to his brethren in all things; (sin always excepted) that is to be tempted, to suffer, to die, that having the true nature of a suffering man, he might become a merciful high priest, fit to compassionate us in our sins, in our temptations and sufferings. (Witham)
Hebrews 2:18 For in that, wherein he himself hath suffered and been tempted, he is able to succour those also who are tempted.

Hebrews 3:0 Christ is more excellent than Moses: and therefore we must adhere to him by faith and obedience.

Hebrews 3:1 Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly vocation, consider the apostle and high priest of our profession, Jesus:

The....high priest of our profession. That is, of the faith we confess, or profess. Christ is also here called our apostle, that is sent by his Father. (Witham) --- Jesus Christ is not only our apostle, he is the doctor, the legislator of the religion we profess. He is our high priest, who offered himself in sacrifice for the sanctification of his Church, and who is now exercising at the right hand of his Father the office of the priesthood in our behalf, both in heaven and on earth. We here see our dignity: we have a God for the apostle and high priest of our religion.
Hebrews 3:2 Who is faithful to him who appointed him, as was also *Moses in all his house.

Numbers 12:7.
Faithful to him, etc. To be made, may apply to Christ as man; but here the sense is, who made him head over all his Church. (Witham)
Hebrews 3:3 For he was deemed worthy of greater glory than Moses, by so much as he who hath built the house, hath greater honour than the house.

Of greater glory, etc. The apostle shews Christ to be greater than Moses several ways. 1. Christ is as much above Moses, as an architect above the house which he has made; for Christ (who, as God, made all things) is the builder of that very house, that is, of the house of Israel, of which Moses was only a part of a member. 2. Moses was only employed in the house, as a servant, to give testimony to others, as he was ordered. (Witham)
Hebrews 3:4 For every house is built by some man: but he who created all things, is God.

Hebrews 3:5 And Moses indeed was faithful in all his house, as a servant, for a testimony of those things which were to be spoken:

Hebrews 3:6 But Christ, as a Son in his own house: which house are we, if we hold firm the confidence, and the glory of hope unto the end.

Christ, as a Son in his own house: which house, or Church of the faithful are we: and Christ is our only Lord and Master, equally with the Father, and the Holy Ghost; but we are all members, and profitable members, if we retain firm the confidence in him, and the glory of hope, or a glorious hope unto the end. (Witham) --- Hitherto St. Paul endeavours to detach the Hebrews from Moses and the law, to attach them to Christ and his gospel. What follows, is an exhortation to persevere in the faith, lest we come to be cast off like the Jews.
Hebrews 3:7 Wherefore, as the Holy Ghost saith: *To-day, if you shall hear his voice,

Psalm 94:8.; Hebrews 4:7.
Hebrews 3:8 Harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the desert,

This alludes to the 17th chapter of Exodus, where the history of provocations and contradictions of the Israelites is related at large.
Hebrews 3:9 Where your fathers tempted me, proved, and saw my works,

Hebrews 3:10 Forty years: For which cause I was offended with this generation, and I said: They always err in heart. And they have not known my ways,

Hebrews 3:11 As I have sworn in my wrath: If they shall enter into my rest.

As I have sworn in my wrath:{ Ver. 11. Si introibunt, ei eiseleusontai.|} if they shall enter into my rest. But if here implies the same as they shall not. See Mark 8:12. And that this is the sense here, appears by the 18th verse, where it is expressly said, they should not enter into his rest; that is to rest in the land of Chanaan[Canaan], promised to them. (Witham)
Hebrews 3:12 Take heed, brethren, lest perhaps there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, to depart from the living God:

Take heed, etc. Not to imitate their incredulous obstinacy, lest you never enter into the place of eternal rest, by departing from God by sin. (Witham) --- To abandon Christ is to abandon God, since Christ is God. He who denies the Son, believes not the Father, who has wrought so many miracles to sanction his mission. (1 John 2:23.) It is of little consequence to eternity whether it be the doctrine of faith or the life of faith we reject, if persons are equally lost by either practical or speculative infidelity.
Hebrews 3:13 But exhort one another every day, whilst to-day is named: lest any one of you be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.

To day. The duration of the present life may be accounted but a day, which God destines for the trial of our faith and obedience; we ought, therefore, to labour hard during the short time of the present day, that we may live and reign with God for all eternity. We cannot too often entertain this truth in our hearts, if we wish to square our lives after the gospel. The heart of man becomes insensibly hardened to Christian truths, when its natural corruption is not courageously attacked.
Hebrews 3:14 For we are made partakers of Christ: yet so if we hold the beginning of his substance firm unto the end.

You have already been made partakers of the benefits of Christ, at your conversion and baptism, to the beginning of his substance,{ Ver. 14. Initium substantiae ejus, ten archen tes upostaseos. See Hebrews 11:1. Est fides sperandarum substantia rerum, elpizomenon upostasis.|} by which seems to be understood the faith of Christ. (Witham) --- If to subsist in Jesus Christ, to be washed in his blood, to be animated with his spirit, to be nourished with his flesh, is but a sketch, a seed of that union with him which on a future day is to be effected, how comes it that we are so attached to this earth, how can we hazard for such a mere trifle such immense felicity?
Hebrews 3:15 While it is said: To-day, if you shall hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in that provocation.

From the 6th and 14th verses we learn the great happiness conferred on us at baptism; but all this, happily, we are taught is dependent on faith, on the foundation of our spiritual and divine being.
Hebrews 3:16 For some who heard did provoke: but not all who came out of Egypt by Moses.

Let us not flatter ourselves with having quitted Egypt by our baptism, unless we also quit that opposition, and that disobedience of our heart to the laws and maxims of the gospel. The Israelites, under the guidance of Moses, left Egypt for the promised land, and after travelling in the desert for the space of two years, found themselves on the confines of the so much desired country; but the possession of it was denied them, and they were left to perish in the desert, because they distrusted God's promises, and were incredulous to his word. All that happened to this chosen people, says St. Paul, was a figure of what was to happen to us. Here then we may read our destiny, if, like them, we prove ungrateful to God.
Hebrews 3:17 And with whom was he offended forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, *whose carcasses fell in the desert?

Numbers 14:37.
Whose carcasses were laid, or buried in the desert? None of those who were reckoned up (Numbers xiv.) entered the land of Chanaan[Canaan], except Josue[Joshua] and Caleb; but then we may take notice, that none were there numbered under twenty years of age, nor the Levites, nor the women. (Witham)
Hebrews 3:18 And to whom did he swear that they should not enter into his rest: but to them that believed not.

Hebrews 3:19 And we see that they could not enter in, because of unbelief.

Hebrews 4:0 The Christian's rest: we are to enter into it through Jesus Christ.

Hebrews 4:1 Let us, therefore, fear, lest perhaps forsaking the promise of entering into his rest, any of you be thought to be wanting.

Let us, therefore, fear, etc. St. Paul continues his exhortation to them, not to be like the incredulous Jews, and so to be excluded from the place of eternal rest. (Witham)
Hebrews 4:2 For to us also it hath been declared as well as to them, but the word of hearing did not profit them, not being mixed with the faith of those things which they heard.

To us....hath been declared, as well as to them. That is, as the riches of the country of Chanaan[Canaan], was told by Josue[Joshua] and Caleb to the people, but they would not believe them; so the happiness of the kingdom of heaven has been preached by us to you: but the word they heard (literally, the word of hearing ) did not profit them, not being mixed, or received with faith: let not this be your case. (Witham) --- As the want of a firm faith was the cause of the punishment of the Israelites, of their privation of a promised inheritance, so Christians will be eternally excluded from the kingdom promised them, unless they steadily believe and obey the gospel of Jesus Christ. The reason why so few profit of the word, is because few take care to meditate on it, to digest it, and as it were, incorporate it with themselves by proper considerations.
Hebrews 4:3 For we who have believed, shall enter into rest; as he said: *As I have sworn in my wrath: If they shall enter into my rest: and this when the works from the foundation of the world were finished.

Psalm 94:11.
etc. It is faith that opens heaven; but faith animated by charity, nourished by good works, and perfected by mortification of the senses. God only enters into his rest after the accomplishment of his works, and shall we expect to enter before we accomplish what he has given us to do? Let us fear, but in hoping; let us hope, but in labouring. --- The works....were finished.{ Ver. 3. Operibus ab institutione mundi perfectis, kai toi ton ergon apo kataboles kosmou genethenton.|} This place is the same, and equally obscure in the Greek as in the Latin text. The apostle here examines what David, as a prophet, could mean, when he said of some: they shall not enter, or, if they shall enter into my rest. His argument is this: David could not prophesy of that rest, by which God, after he had created all things, (Genesis 2:2.) is said to have rested the seventh day, when he had finished the works of the creation. Nor could David speak of that other time of resting, which was promised and given to the Israelites, when, having conquered all their enemies, they were introduced by Jesus, or Josue[Joshua], into the promised land of Chanaan[Canaan]; for these two rests were passed long before his prophecy: therefore David must speak of some rest that was to come afterwards, when he said: To-day, if you shall hear his voice, harden not your hearts, etc. Therefore it must needs follow that some day of rest, some sabbatism, as he calls it, after his time, must remain for the people of God, that should not harden their hearts: and from hence he concludes that David had in view that eternal rest of happiness which the Messias was to obtain for us, a rest without end in the kingdom of heaven. --- Let us hasten, therefore, or as it is in the Greek, let us make it our endeavour, to gain that place of rest, by our persevering in faith and good works, and take heed not to be excluded with the unbelievers. (Witham)
Hebrews 4:4 For in a certain place he spoke of the seventh day thus: *And God rested the seventh day from all his works.

Genesis 2:2.
Hebrews 4:5 And in this place again: If they shall enter into my rest.

Hebrews 4:6 Seeing then it remaineth that some are to enter into it, and they, to whom it was first preached, did not enter in because of unbelief:

Hebrews 4:7 Again he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To-day, after so long a time, as it is above said: *To-day, if you shall hear his voice, harden not your hearts.

Hebrews 3:7.
Hebrews 4:8 For if Jesus had given them rest, he would never have afterwards spoken of another day.

Hebrews 4:9 There remaineth, therefore, a rest for the people of God.

Hebrews 4:10 For he who is entered into his rest: he also hath rested from his works, as God from his.

Hebrews 4:11 Let us hasten, therefore, to enter into that rest: lest any man fall into the same example of unbelief.

Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is living and effectual, and more penetrating than any two-edged sword: and reaching unto the division of the soul and the spirit, of the joints also, and the marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

For the word of God is living, etc. Some understand by the word of God, the eternal word, or Son of God: (to whom may apply all in the 12th and 13th verses) but others rather expound it of the words, promises, and menaces of God, either foretold by the prophets, or preached by the apostles. (Witham) --- All this language is metaphorical, but perfectly well understood by the Jews. In their sacrifices, the Levites made use of a two-edged knife to separate from the victim what was for God, what was for the priests, and what was for the people. Thus in sacrificing sinners to the justice of God, Jesus Christ, like a two-edged knife, will separate what is for God, and what is for man; that is whatever is good or evil in the whole of man's conduct.
Hebrews 4:13 *Neither is there any creature invisible in his sight: but all things are naked and open to the eyes of him, to whom our speech is.

Psalm 33:16.; Ecclesiasticus 15:20.
In his sight, or to the eyes, must signify in the sight of God. (Witham) --- If the word of God in Jesus Christ be so terrible, what will Jesus Christ be himself, when he comes to judge us according to the severity of his justice?
Hebrews 4:14 Having, therefore, a great high priest who hath penetrated into the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession.

Having, therefore, as I told you before, a great high priest, Christ, who ascended into heaven, who can compassionate our infirmities, let us with a firm confidence approach the throne of grace, by faith, hope, charity, and good works. (Witham)
Hebrews 4:15 For we have not a high priest, who cannot have compassion on our infirmities: but one tempted in all things like as we are, without sin.

Hebrews 4:16 Let us go, therefore, with confidence to the throne of grace: that we may obtain mercy, and find grace in seasonable aid.

Let us often contemplate Jesus Christ on his two thrones, that of his mercy, and that of his justice; of his mercy, where at present he is seated as our compassionate high priest, to bestow on us the riches of his grace; of his justice, where he will one day sit as judge, to examine most rigorously both our faith and our practice. Our separated brethren pretend to prove from this text that we need no help of saints to obtain any favour. But by this argument they may as well take away the helps and prayers of the living for one another. For we do not require the help of either the saints in heaven, or of our brethren on earth, through any mistrust of God's mercy, but on account of our own unworthiness, convinced that the prayer of a just man availeth more with Him, than the desire of a grievous sinner; and of a number making intercession together, rather than of one alone. This they cannot deny, except they deny the holy Scriptures. Neither do we come less to Him, or with less confidence, when we come accompanied with the prayers of Angels, saints, priests, or just men, with us, as they fondly imagine and pretend; but with much more confidence in his grace, mercy, and merits, than if we prayed ourselves alone. (Bristow)
Hebrews 5:0 The office of a high priest. Christ is our high priest.

Hebrews 5:1 For every high priest taken from among men is ordained for men in the things that appertain to God, that he may offer up gifts and sacrifices for sins:

Every high priest. He speaks first of the office of priests in general, before he speaks of Christ's priesthood. A priest is chosen and preferred before other men, as qualified for the divine ministry, to offer up gifts, oblations, sacrifices, in order to obtain forgiveness for his own sins and those of the people, who, by the experience he has of his own infirmities, may compassionate others who offend through frailty or ignorance, every priest (excepting our Saviour Christ) being a sinner. Nor must he take upon himself rashly and inconsiderately, for temporal motives, this sacred ministry, formidable (says St. Gregory) even for the shoulders of Angels; he must consult God by prayer, follow the advice of his spiritual guides and pious parents; by these means to know whether he has a call from God to this ministry, as Aaron had. (Witham) --- The priest and pastor should never forget that he is a man and a sinner; that he is honoured with this divine ministry, to offer sacrifice both for his own sins and for the sins of the faithful; that prayer should be his delight, the altar his centre, and the sacrifice of the body and blood of Christ his supreme felicity. "This sacrifice of the Eucharist," says St. Augustine, "has succeeded to all the ancient victims that were immolated of old, to signify the future sacrifice." (lib. 10. ch. XX. de Civit. Dei.) As to the word mass, it was in use to signify this holy sacrifice of the altar above thirteen hundred years ago. See the second Council of Carthage, canon 3.; St. Jerome upon the Prov. ch. XI.; St. Ambrose, lib. 2. ep. 14. Missam facere coepi; I began to say mass. It was introduced into this country [of Great Britain] with Christianity itself. See Ven. Bede's history, ch. XXVII. et b. 4. ch. XIV.
Hebrews 5:2 Who can have compassion on them who are ignorant, and err: because he himself also is encompassed with infirmity:

Hebrews 5:3 And therefore he ought, as for the people, so also for himself, to offer for sins.

Hebrews 5:4 *Neither doth any man take the honour to himself but he that is called by God, as Aaron was.

Exodus 28:1.; 2 Paralipomenon 26:18.
See in 3 Kings xiii.; 2 Paralipomenon xxvi.; and 1 Kings xiii. the manifest punishments of the Almighty on laics that impiously and sacrilegiously attempted the ministry of priests. In the Christian dispensation, archbishop Cranmer, the very soul of the pretended reformation, dictatorially pronounces, "he that is appointed to be a bishop or priest, needeth no consecration:" words quoted by Dr. Stillingfleet from his own handwriting, in his Irenicum, p. 391, 2nd ed. But the Catholic Church has given a very different decision, which is confirmed by the testimony of Scripture, apostolical tradition, and the unanimous consent of the Fathers. See Acts 6:6.; Acts 13:3.; Acts 14:22.; 1 Timothy 4:14. etc. See in the history of Socrates, who lived in the fifth century, how the usurpation of Ischyras, in taking upon himself the name and office of a priest without receiving holy orders, was reprobated as a crime worthy of death. (lib. 1. ch. XXVII. Ed. Val.)
Hebrews 5:5 So also Christ did not glorify himself to be made a high priest: but he that said to him: *Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee.

Psalm 2:7.
So also Christ, as man, did not glorify himself, by assuming this dignity of high priest, but had it conferred upon him by the divine decrees of his eternal Father, who said to him: Thou art my Son, and thou art a priest forever, etc. (Witham)
Hebrews 5:6 As he saith also in another place: *Thou art a priest forever, according to the order of Melchisedech.

Psalm 109:4.
Some may perhaps wonder why St. Paul does not dwell more in this epistle on the eucharistic sacrifice; but until the Hebrews understood the bloody sacrifice on the cross, they could not be supposed to understand the unbloody sacrifice of the altar. The holy Fathers observe, that the sacrifice of Melchisedech, (Genesis 14:18.) offered in bread and wine, prefigured the unbloody sacrifice offered by Jesus Christ at his last supper. See Clement of Alexandria, lib. 4. Strom. ch. VIII.; St. Cyprian, lib. 2. ep. 3. ad Caeul.; Eusebius of Caesarea, lib. 5. Dem. Evang. ch. III.; St. Jerome, ad Marcel.; St. Augustine, ep. 95. ad Inn. Pap.; St. Ambrose; St. Epiphanius; St. Chrysostom; etc. apud Bellarmine, lib. 1. de missa. ch. VI. Hence it follows, that the holy Eucharist is truly and properly a sacrifice as well as a sacrament, as the paschal lamb or passover of the old law was both a sacrament and sacrifice. For either our Saviour offered sacrifice at his last supper under the forms of bread and wine, or he cannot be called a priest forever according to the order of Melchisedech. For the different orders of priests are chiefly distinguished by their sacrifice; (see ver. 1.) and if it be supposed that our Saviour only offered a bloody sacrifice, he would with more propiety have been called a priest according to the order of Aaron, and not of Melchisedech. See St. Augustine, lib. 16. de Civitat. Dei. ch. XXII.
Hebrews 5:7 Who in the days of his flesh, offering up prayers and supplications, with a strong cry and tears to him, that was able to save him from death, was heard for his reverence.

Who in the days of his flesh, of his mortal and suffering condition, even with strong and fervent crying out, and tears, offering up as man, prayers and supplications to him, to God, who could save him from death; to wit, in the garden of Gethsemani, and on the cross, yet with a perfect resignation and conformity of his human will to the divine will, was heard for his reverence.{ Ver. 7. Exauditus est pro sua reverentia, eisakoustheis apo tes eulabeias. Even the last Protestant translation, though much more exact than any of the former, puts, and was heard in that he feared. If the Rhemes translation, which I have not changed, be obscure, I much doubt whether theirs can be better understood. I will not suppose that they mean with Calvin, that Christ was so abandoned on the cross as to be driven to despair, and that he feared and felt the punishments of the damned, from which he begged to be freed, and was heard. Beza, says Calvin, was the first author of this exposition, that is, of this blasphemy. I will rather suppose that the Protestant translators only meant, that Christ, as man, feared death. How then was he heard in that he feared? not so as to be freed from death, which he willingly underwent, but was heard so as to triumph over death, and shortly after to rise and ascend triumphant into heaven. Dr. Wells, in his amendments to the Protestant translation, has changed it in this manner, was heard so as to be delivered from his fear; and in his paraphrase expounds it thus, namely, by an Angel sent on purpose to strengthen him; so that he expounds this text of the fear and prayer of Christ in the garden, from which fear he was freed at the appearing of the Angel. (Luke xxii. 43.) I pretend, notwithstanding, that the Protestant translation, was heard in that he feared, though we take it with the additions made by Dr. Wells, was heard so as to be delivered from his fear, is far from being exact, nor can it be looked upon as a proper and literal translation from the Greek text, apo tes eulabeias. First, where is there any thing in the Greek for he feared, or his fear? or that he was delivered from his fear? This is to add in the text itself a particular exposition, which at the same time is contrary to what divers interpreters take to be the literal sense of these words, apo tes eulabeias, who by eulabeias understand that great respect and regard which was in the Father towards Christ, because he was his Son. St. Chrysostom understood the force of the Greek text as well as any one, and this seems the meaning of these his words: (log. e, p. 475, linea 20. Ed. Sav.) tosaue en autou e eulabeia, os kai apo toutou aideisthai auton ton theon. Nor does the Latin translator of St. Chrysostom, Mutius Scholasticus, in the edition of Fronto Ducaeus, seem to have mistaken the sense of St. Chrysostom, where we find, (hom. viii. p. 1478) tanta fuit ejus reverentia, ac pietas, ut ideò eum revereretur Deus. Others indeed expound it of the reverential and godly fear, or piety, that was in Christ, as man, towards God, his Father, and that his prayers were heard on this account: but this will not justify the Protestant translation, that he was heard in that he feared, not the paraphrase of Dr. Wells, so as to be delivered from his fear, as if by eulabeias were understood merely a natural fear and apprehension. I find Mr. Legh, in his Critica Sacra, on the word eulabeias, says that the Syriac version has from fear: but he is mistaken, as may be seen in Walton's Polyglot: the Syriac has only, he was heard, without any mention at all of any kind of fear, which is left out. Mr. Legh says, Nazianzen[St. Gregory of Nazianzus] and Theodoret follow this sense. He cites not the words nor the places. It must be again his mistake. Theodoret has nothing like it in his commentary on this passage, nor St. Gregory (orat. xxxvi.) where he cites these words of St. Paul. It is true eulabeias, especially in profane authors, has sometimes the same signification as timor, or metus. It is, says Scapula, timiditas circumspecta; but also, even in profane writers, the same as, religio, pietas in Deum. See also what examples Scapula brings on eulaboumai and eulabes; on which he says, apud Ecclesiasticos Scriptores, et in Test. Novi libris, circumspectus et cautus circa ea quae ad cultum divinum pertinent, religiosus, pius, ut Luc. 2. I know also, that in Hebrews 11:7., it is said of Noe[Noah], metùens, in the vulgar Latin, for eulabetheis; and in Acts xxiii. 10. Tribunus timens, eulabetheis; but neither do these two examples shew that in this place, where mention is made of our Saviour Christ, eulabeia can be properly and literally translated by fear, or that the sense is that Christ was heard so as to be delivered from his fear. For first, this exposition of fear and apprehension of death agrees not with the common exposition of the ancient Fathers, neither with St. Chrysostom and those who follow him, nor with the others, as I have shewn already. Secondly, this translation agrees not with the Protestant translation in other places. As for the substantive, eulabeia, it is only found in one other place in the New Testament, to wit, Hebrews 12:28., meta aidous, kai eulabeias, where the Protestant translation has with reverence and godly fear; and for the adjective, eulabes, where old Simeon is called eulabes in the common Greek copies, (Luke 2:25.) they have translated, a devout man. In Acts 8:2., the men that buried St. Stephen, andres eulabeis, are translated devout men, as also in Acts 2:5. Thirdly, the ancient Arabic version signifies propter reverentiam ejus, and the Ethiopic ob justitiam ejus, as they are in the translations of Walton, which agree with the Latin Vulgate, but not with that sense in which the English Protestants have translated the Greek. In fine, it must be observed that apo here, according to these versions, bears the sense of ob or propter, and not of ab or ex, of which signification see many examples in Estius. (Witham)|} I leave this translation, which is in the Rhemes Testament, very literal from the Latin Vulgate, and which cannot be said to be any ways disagreeable to the Greek. As to the sense, there are two expositions in the best interpreters. St. Chrysostom and many others understand, that he was heard as to every prayer that he made absolutely, and not conditionally only, (as when he prayed that the cup of his sufferings might pass from him) and he was heard for that reverence, reverential regard, and just consideration which the eternal Father had for him, who was his true Son. This interpretation agrees better with the Greek text, in which is left out the word his. Others by his reverence, understand that he was heard on account of that reverential fear, that respectful submission and piety, which he always had towards his eternal Father. And if it be asked in what Christ was not heard, and in what he was heard: he was not heard when he said, let this cup of sufferings, or this death, pass from me, because it was not what he asked and prayed for with an absolute desire, but only thereby expressed the natural fear which, as man, he had of death, and therefore presently added, but not my will but thine be done, expressing what he knew to be the divine will. And to shew this, St. Chrysostom on these words, brings all those sentences by which our Saviour, Christ, had declared that he had power to lay down his life, and power to take it up again; that no one taketh it from him, but that he laid it down of himself. See (John 10:18.) and St. Chrysostom, hom. VII. p. 475. But Christ was heard in all he prayed for with an absolute will, according to what he said to his Father, I know that thou always hearest me. (John 11:42.) He was heard as to all that he asked with an absolute will, either for himself or his Church. (Witham) --- What excellent dispositions these of Jesus Christ in his sacrifice, which we learn from his apostles. How truly worthy are these tears both of our love and our adoration! Hence it appears, that Jesus Christ in his prayer both in the garden and on the cross shed tears, though the evangelists are silent on this head. (Menochius)
Hebrews 5:8 And whereas indeed he was the Son of God, he learned obedience by the things which he suffered:

He that was truly the Son of God, and knew all things, learnt practically, and taught us perfect obedience in suffering and dying a cruel death on the cross. (Witham)
Hebrews 5:9 And being consummated, he became the cause of eternal salvation to all that obey him,

And being consummated, or perfected as man in all kinds of virtues, and at the same time true God by his divine person, became the author of salvation to all those who both believe in him and obey him. (Witham)
Hebrews 5:10 Called by God a high priest, according to the order of Melchisedech.

There is but one eternal Pontiff, one universal Priest given by God all others are his vicars, but not successors, whom he associates to his priesthood, to continue those same functions on earth which he himself exercises in heaven, and which had been prefigured in Melchisedech.
Hebrews 5:11 Of whom we have great things to say, and hard to be intelligibly uttered: because you are become weak to hear.

Of whom, that is of his high priesthood, according to the order of Melchisedech, we have mighty things to say, and very hard to be expounded or understood by you, at least many of you, who, though you ought to be masters after the gospel hath been so long preached, and even by the apostles of Christ, yet you are weak as to understanding it; (the Greek also signifies slothful and negligent) you stand in need of being taught the first elements and principles of the Christian faith, like children, who are rather to be fed with milk than with more solid meats. How many are there now in the like condition, who are for reading and expounding all the holy Scriptures according to their own way of thinking? (Witham)
Hebrews 5:12 For whereas for the time you ought to be masters; you have need to be taught again what are the first rudiments of the oracles of God: and you are become such as have need of milk, and not of solid food.

Hebrews 5:13 For every one that is a partaker of milk, is unskilful in the word of justice: for he is a little child.

Hebrews 5:14 But solid food is for the perfect: for those who by use have their senses exercised to the discerning of good and evil.

Hebrews 6:0 He warns them of the danger of falling by apostacy; and exhorts them to patience and perseverance.

Hebrews 6:1 Wherefore, leaving the word of the beginning of Christ, let us go on to things more perfect, not laying again the foundation of penance from dead works, and of faith towards God,

\f + \fr 6:1-2\ft Wherefore leaving the word, etc. This is to be taken as connected with what he had said in the last chapter, (ver. 12.) of the elements, or rudiments of Christian faith, concerning which, though some seemed not sufficiently instructed, yet he thinks it here enough to name them, and pass them over: to wit, 1. Penance, or the dispositions of a sincere repentance. 2. Faith, when they are come to the years of being instructed. 3. The doctrine of baptisms, which he expresseth in the plural number, either because all the faithful must be baptized once, if we speak of Christian baptism; or he means that persons ought to know they cannot receive Christ's baptism over again. Or, in fine, he means that the baptisms used by the Jews, which they so frequently repeated, could not make them justified. 4. The doctrine of imposition of hands, by which is commonly expounded that which was given in the sacrament of confirmation. 5. Of the resurrection of the dead. 6. Of the judgment, by which God would judge all mankind. Of these things he supposeth them already instructed. (Witham) --- We see here the order in which the apostles taught the Christian doctrine to the catechumens: 1. They excited them to sorrow for their sins. 2. They required of them acts of faith in God and his Son Jesus Christ. 3. They explained the nature of Christ's baptism, its virtue, and difference from the baptism of John the Baptist and others. 4. After baptism, they laid their hands on them, that they might receive the strengthening grace of the Holy Ghost in confirmation; and finally, they excited them to perseverance, by the hope of a glorious resurrection, and of eternal life, and by setting before their eyes eternal damnation as the consequence of apostacy.
Hebrews 6:2 Of the doctrine of baptisms, and the imposition of hands, and of the resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment.

Hebrews 6:3 And this we will do, if God will permit.

And this we will do, meaning what he said in the first verse, that his design was to proceed to things more perfect, which, after some admonitions, he comes to in the next chapter, when he speaks of the priesthood of Christ. (Witham)
Hebrews 6:4 *For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, have tasted also the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost,

Matthew 12:45.; Hebrews 10:26.; 2 Peter 2:20.
etc. For it is impossible,{ Ver. 4. Impossible, adunaton. See Cornelius a Lapide and Estius, who say of this exposition of baptism, Sic omnes Graeci, et Latinorum maxima pars. Baptism is often called, photisma. See St. Gregory of Nazianzus, orat. xxxix. in Sta Lumina.|} etc. This is an obscure place, differently expounded, which shows how rash it is for the ignorant to pretend to understand the holy Scriptures. Many understand these words, it is impossible, etc. of the sacrament of penance, or of returning to God by a profitable repentance, especially after such heinous sins as an apostacy from the true faith. But then we must take the word impossible, to imply no more than a thing that is very hard to be done, or that seldom happens, as when it is said, (Matthew 19:26.) that it is impossible for rich men to be saved: and (Luke 17:1.) it is impossible that scandals should not come. For it is certain that it is never impossible for the greatest sinners to repent by the assistance which God offers them, who has also left the power to his ministers to forgive in his name the greatest sins. But others (whose interpretation seems preferable) expound this of baptism, which can only be given once. The words here in the text very much favour this exposition, when it is said, who were once enlightened. For baptism in the first ages was called the sacrament of illumination. See St. Denis de caelesti Hierar. ch. IV.; St. Gregory of Nazianzus; etc. The following words also agree with baptism, when they are said to have been made partakers of the Holy Ghost; to have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come; all which signify the interior graces, the miraculous gifts, and power of working miracles, which they who were baptized frequently received in those days. --- They cannot be renewed again unto penance. That is, they cannot be renewed again by baptism, which is also called a renovation. (Titus 3:5.) Their sins may indeed be forgiven them in the sacrament of penance, but this is not a renovation like that in baptism, in which both the guilt, and all pain due to past sins, is remitted; whereas in the sacrament of penance, though the guilt, and the eternal punishments due to sins be remitted, yet many times, temporal punishments, to be undergone either in this world or the next, still remain due to such as have been great sinners, to them who by relapsing into the same sins, have crucified again to themselves the Son of God, making a mockery of him; that is who, insensible of the favours received, have ungratefully renewed sin; to take away which Christ suffered, was mocked, crucified, etc. (Witham) --- Macknight observes that Beza, without any authority from ancient manuscripts hath inserted in his version Si, If they shall fall away, that this text might not appear to contradict the Calvinistic doctrine of the assurance of salvation. The English translators have followed Beza. The biblical student will be glad to find Dr. Wells, in his elegant edition of the New Testament, frequently restoring and preferring those readings which agree with the Latin Vulgate. The same just tribute is paid to the Vulgate by Walton, Mills, Gerard, Griesbach, Harwood, and others. Indeed the Vulgate has been declared authentic in a general council, and probably expresses more of the true reading of the original or autograph, than any Greek edition that is now to be found, and certainly much more than modern versions, which are stained more or less by the preconceived sentiments of the translators. --- For the earth that drinketh in the rain, etc. He bringeth this comparison, to give them a horror of abusing God's graces and favours, and of making themselves guilty of hell fire. (Witham)
Hebrews 6:5 Have moreover tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come,

Hebrews 6:6 And are fallen away, to be renewed again unto penance, crucifying again to themselves the Son of God, and making a mockery of him.

Hebrews 6:7 For the earth that drinketh in the rain which cometh often upon it, and bringeth forth herbs useful for them by whom it is tilled, receiveth blessing from God.

Hebrews 6:8 But that which bringeth forth thorns and briers, is rejected; and very near to a curse, whose end is to be burnt.

Hebrews 6:9 But my dearly beloved, we trust better things of you, and nearer to salvation: though we thus speak.

etc. We trust better things of you, etc. That is, though I have admonished you in this manner, I hope the best, especially knowing how charitable many of you have been to your Christian brethren. (Witham) --- Faith begins the work of salvation; good works from a principle of charity continue it; perseverance in virtue, and patience under afflictions complete it. To assert the contrary is not to derogate so much from the work of man, as from the grace of God, which is the cause and ground of all that is good in man. "Mark," says St. Augustine, "that he to whom our Lord gave grace, hath our Lord, also his debtor. He found him a giver in the time of mercy: he that him his debtor in the time of judgment." (In Psalm vi.) --- It is certain God, who is not unjust, will reward these good works, if you continue in the same, to the accomplishing of hope even to the end.{ Ver. 11. Ad expletionem spei usque ad finem, pros ten pleorophorian. See the signification of this word, Luke 1:1.|} for the obtaining the happiness you hope for. Be not therefore slothful, and negligent; it is by faith, patience, and perseverance, that you will inherit God’s promises. (Witham)
Hebrews 6:10 For God is not unjust, that he should forget your work, and the love which you have shewn in his name, you who have ministered, and do minister to the saints.

Hebrews 6:11 And we desire that every one of you shew forth the same carefulness to the accomplishing of hope unto the end:

Hebrews 6:12 That you become not slothful, but followers of them, who through faith and patience shall inherit the promises.

Hebrews 6:13 For God promising to Abraham, because he had no one greater by whom he might swear, swore by himself,

etc. For God promising to Abraham, to bless all nations in his seed; that is by the coming of Christ, swore by himself, having no greater to swear by, etc. He shews them how certain they may be of eternal happiness, unless they be slothful. First, it is God himself, who hath promised to make them happy. Secondly, he promised it with an oath; and these are two unchangeable things in God, who cannot lie. And the oath was: unless blessing, I will bless thee, etc. The sense is, unless I give thee great blessings, let me not be esteemed the true God. By this God hath given the strongest consolation to us, who have fled from the imperfect works of the former law of Moses, by believing and hoping in Christ. This hope is as a sure and firm anchor of our souls, amidst all persecutions and dangers, which will make us enter in, even within the veil, as it were into that part of the temple called the holy of holies, which was a figure of heaven, into which Christ Jesus himself entered first, by his glorious ascension after his sufferings. He entered as our high priest, and to prepare us there a place. (Witham)
Hebrews 6:14 Saying: *Unless blessing, I will bless thee, and multiplying, I will multiply thee.

Genesis 22:16.
Hebrews 6:15 And so after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise.

Hebrews 6:16 For men swear by one greater than themselves; and an oath, for confirmation, is the end of all their controversy.

Hebrews 6:17 Wherein God, meaning more abundantly to shew to the heirs of the promise the immutability of his counsel, interposed an oath:

Hebrews 6:18 That by two immutable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we may have the strongest comfort, who have fled for refuge, to hold fast the hope set before us:

Hebrews 6:19 Which we have as an anchor of the soul, sure and firm, and which entereth even within the veil,

Hebrews 6:20 Where the forerunner, Jesus, is entered for us, made a high priest for ever, according to the order of Melchisedech.

Hebrews 7:0 The priesthood of Christ, according to the order of Melchisedech, excels the Levitical priesthood, and puts an end both to that and to the law.

Hebrews 7:1 For *this Melchisedech, king of Salem, priest of the most high God, who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings, and blessed him:

Genesis 14:18.
This Melchisedech. If we look for the construction, Melchisedech may be joined with what follows, (ver. 3.) continueth a priest for ever. (Witham) --- The excellency of this personage was so transcendent, that some of the ancients took him to be an Angel, and some the Holy Ghost. This the Fathers condemn; for had he not been a man, a king, and a priest, he would not have been so worthy a type of our Saviour.
Hebrews 7:2 To whom also Abraham divided the tithes of all: who indeed first by interpretation is king of justice: and then also king of Salem, that is, king of peace,

King of justice, according to the signification of the word Melchisedech, and of peace, signified by the place Salem, of which he was king. By Salem is commonly expounded Jerusalem, though St. Jerome thinks it was a town in Samaria afterwards called Sichem. This king was also a priest of the Most High; that is of the true God. He blessed Abraham, after he had defeated Chodorlahomor and the other kings; (Genesis xiv.) and Abraham gave him the tithes of all things which he had taken from his enemies. He is said (ver. 3.) to have been without father, without mother, without any genealogy, without beginning of days or end of life, inasmuch as we have no account in the Scripture of these particulars. He is said in Genesis to have brought out, inasmuch as he was a priest, that is, to have offered up a sacrifice to God of bread and wine. The apostle here shews two things, that Melchisedech was greater than Abraham, and that he is a figure of Christ, who is a priest for ever, according to the order of Melchisedech. (Psalm 109:4.) (Witham)
Hebrews 7:3 Without father, without mother, without genealogy, having neither beginning of days, nor end of life, but likened unto the Son of God, continueth a priest for ever.

Without father, etc. Not that he had no father, etc. but that neither his father, nor his pedigree, nor his birth, nor his death, are set down in Scripture. (Challoner) --- Not that he was without father and mother, says St. Jerome, (ep. cxxxvi.) for Christ himself was not without a Father according to his divinity, nor without a Mother in his humanity; but because his genealogy is not given in Genesis, as that of the other patriarchs is, but he is abruptly introduced without any mention of either his birth or death. In Melchisedech all was prophetical and figurative of Jesus Christ; and Abraham undoubtedly in this patriarch saw Jesus Christ in spirit, and exulted that all the nations of the earth were to be blessed in him. Abraham, your father, greatly desired, says our Lord to the Jews, to see the day of my coming: he saw it, and was filled with joy. (John 8:56.)
Hebrews 7:4 Now consider how great this man is, to whom also Abraham, the patriarch, gave tithes out of the chief spoils.

Consider how great this man (Melchisedech) was, and greater than our great patriarch, Abraham: 1. Because Abraham, of his own accord, paid tithes to this priest of all the chief things he had: which was to own himself inferior to him: as the rest of the Jewish people are inferior to the sons of Levi, the descendants of Aaron, who being raised to the dignity of the priesthood by the command of God, have a right to take tithes or tenths of the people; and so are honoured above the rest. 2. This Melchisedech blessed, or gave a benediction to our great father Abraham, to whom the promises of blessing all nations was made. Now he that gives a blessing to another, must be better or greater than he to whom the blessing is given; therefore Melchisedech was greater than Abraham. 3. To shew another pre-eminence of the priesthood of Melchisedech (which was a figure of the eternal priesthood of Christ) above the priesthood of Aaron, the apostle takes notice that the sons of Levi, the priests of the ancient law, to whom tithes were to be paid, were no more than mortal men, always dying, whereas the Scripture only witnesseth of Melchisedech that he liveth; he is represented as one that hath neither beginning nor end of his days. This agrees chiefly with Christ, who by the psalmist is called, a priest for ever. And, though Christ also died for us, for it was chiefly by his death that he offered his sacrifice, yet he presently rose again, and continues for ever a priest, without a successor as to his priesthood, and as to the sacrifice of expiation for the sins of mankind. His priesthood, his sacrifice, and oblation for our redemption, lasts for ever. 4. Another reason that shews the priesthood of Melchisedech (and of our Saviour, Christ) to be above the Aaronical priesthood, is, that not only Abraham, but even Aaron and Levi, and all their successors, may be said in the person of Abraham to have paid tithes to Melchisedech, because we may consider them as yet in the loins of Abraham, from whom they descended; though it cannot be said, in like manner, that Christ himself was in the loins of Abraham, because though he was Son of Abraham, yet his conception was not in the ordinary way of human generation, but by the operation of the Holy Ghost. See St. Augustine, lib. X. de Gen. ad lit. Hebrews 20. tom. 3. p. 270. nov. edit. 5. St. Paul (ver. 11.) brings another reason to shew that the priesthood according to the order of Melchisedech was more perfect, because true justice and sanctification could not be given either by the priesthood of Aaron or by the law of Moses, which began as it were together; for if the former law and sacrifices offered by the priests of Aaron, had been sufficient for man's justification and salvation, there would have been no necessity of a new priesthood according to the order of Melchisedech. Of this St. Paul speaks elsewhere to the Romans. And, as there is a new priesthood, so there is a new law, by which the former is no longer in force. 6. He takes notice of this difference from the former priesthood, that they were priests of the tribe of Levi, but that Christ, the priest according to the order of Melchisedech, is of the tribe of Juda. 7. Another difference is, that the former law, and all belonging to it, consisted of carnal precepts, (ver. 16) in outward ceremonies and sacrifices, with promises of temporal blessings and a long life in this world; but the new law and sacrifice of Christ, is according to the power of an indissoluble and never-ending life, conferring inward graces, with the remission of sins, by which men are justified and saved, with promises of eternal happiness. 8. He tells us that Christ's priesthood was confirmed by God himself with an oath: not so the priesthood of Aaron. This second testament therefore is much better, and more excellent. 9. The former testament brought nothing to perfection. (ver. 19.) It had nothing but types and figures of what was to be fulfilled under the priesthood of Christ. The priests died, and succeeded one to another; and there was need of different sacrifices, which they were to offer daily for their own sins and for the sins of the people; but Christ was innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners, (ver. 26) could not sin, but by suffering once has redeemed all, has satisfied for the sins of all mankind, and by this one sacrifice can save all that come to him by faith, hope, and love; he lives for ever to make intercession for us, as our Mediator and Redeemer. As he remains for ever, he is a priest for ever; and by virtue of that one sacrifice on the cross, all that believe in him and obey him may be may be saved, and be happy for eternity. Christ's sacrifice and oblation on the cross, is that one sacrifice of the new law which remains and will be continued by his ministers, the priest of the new law, to the end of the world, the manner only being different, but not the sacrifice. This is the doctrine of the Catholic Church, delivered to the faithful in the Council of Trent,{ Ver. 4. Una eademque est Hostia, idem nunc offerens sacerdotum ministerio, qui seipsum tunc in cruce obtulit, sola offerendi ratione diversa. (Sess. 22. cap. 2.) Canon 1. Si quis dixerit in missa non offerri verum et proprium sacrificium, etc. anathema. Canon 3. Si quis dixerit missae sacrificium tantum esse laudis, et gratiarum actionis, aut nudam commemorationem sacrificii in cruce peracti, non autem propitiatorium, vel soli prodesse sumenti, etc. Anathema sit.|} (session 22. cap. 2.) where it is declared, that in the Mass is continued the same sacrifice and oblation which Christ offered, who is still the chief priest, in whose name only his ministers, the bishops and priests, speak and act as his instruments. The Victim that is offered is also the same, to wit, the body and blood of Christ, after a spiritual and unbloody manner, according to his command at his last supper. The oblation at the Mass is indeed a true and proper sacrifice, yet not a new or different sacrifice of expiation for the sins of mankind, but an application of Christ's satisfactions and merits, which, though of infinite value, and more than sufficient to satisfy for the sins of the whole world, yet by the will of God are to be applied to us by faith, by the sacraments, by the same sacrifice of Christ's body and blood, offered at the mass, etc. (Witham)
Hebrews 7:5 And indeed they of the sons of Levi, who receive the priesthood, *have a commandment to take tithes of the people according to the law, that is to, of their brethren: though they themselves also came out of the loins of Abraham.

Deuteronomy 18:2.; Josue 14:4.
Hebrews 7:6 But he, whose pedigree is not numbered among them, received tithes of Abraham, and blessed him, who had the promises.

Hebrews 7:7 And without all contradiction, that which is less, is blessed by the better.

Hebrews 7:8 And here indeed, men who die, receive thithes: but there he of whom it is testified, that he liveth.

Hebrews 7:9 And (as it may be said) even Levi, who received tithes, paid tithes through Abraham:

Hebrews 7:10 For he was yet in the loins of his father, when Melchisedech met him.

Hebrews 7:11 If then perfection were by the Levitical priesthood, (for under it the people received the law) what further need was there that another priest should rise, according to the order of Melchisedech, and not be called according to the order of Aaron?

Hebrews 7:12 For the priesthood being translated, it is necessary that a translation also be made of the law.

After giving a decided preference to Melchisedech, and his priesthood, over the Levitical priesthood, St. Paul proves the abrogation of the latter, and even of the law, by the introduction of a new priesthood, according to the order of Melchisedech.
Hebrews 7:13 For he, of whom these things are spoken, is of another tribe, of which no one gave attendance at the altar.

Hebrews 7:14 For it is evident that our Lord sprung out of Juda: in which tribe Moses spoke nothing concerning priests.

Hebrews 7:15 And it is yet far more evident: if, according to the similitude of Melchisedech, there arise another priest,

Hebrews 7:16 Who is made not according to the law of a carnal commandment, but according to the power of an indissoluble life:

Hebrews 7:17 For he testifieth: *Thou art a priest for ever, according to the order of Melchisedech.

Psalm 109:4.
Hebrews 7:18 There is indeed an abrogation of the former commandment, because of the weakness and unprofitableness thereof:

Hebrews 7:19 For the law brought nothing to perfection: but the introduction of a better hope, by which we approach to God.

Hebrews 7:20 And inasmuch as it is not without an oath, (for the others indeed were made priests without an oath:

The old law was good in itself, being established by God, who does nothing in vain; but it was weak and imperfect, and the shadow and figure of that which was to come. It was preparatory to a more perfect dispensation under Jesus Christ, who, as our new high priest, was to finish by the gospel what Moses began by the law.
Hebrews 7:21 But he with an oath, by him that said to him: *The Lord hath sworn, and he will not repent: thou art a priest for ever:)

Psalm 109:4.
Hebrews 7:22 By so much is Jesus made a surety of a better testament.

Hebrews 7:23 And the others indeed were made many priests, because they were prevented by death from continuing:

Many priests, etc. The apostle notes this difference between the high priests of the law, and our high priest, Jesus Christ: that they being removed by death, made way for their successors: whereas our Lord Jesus is a priest for ever, and hath no successor; but liveth and concurreth for ever with his ministers, the priests of the New Testament, in all their functions. Secondly, that no one priest of the law, not all of them together, could offer that absolute sacrifice of everlasting redemption, which our one high priest, Jesus Christ, has offered once and for ever. (Challoner)
Hebrews 7:24 But he, because he continueth for ever, hath an everlasting priesthood,

Hebrews 7:25 Whereby he is able also to save for ever them that approach to God by himself: always living to make intercession for us.

Make intercession. Christ, as man, continually maketh intercession for us, by representing his passion to his Father. (Challoner)
Hebrews 7:26 For it was fitting that we should have such a high priest, holy, innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners, and made higher than the heavens:

Hebrews 7:27 Who needeth not daily as the priests, *to offer sacrifices first for his own sins, and then for the people's: for this he did once, by offering up himself.

Leviticus 16:6.
Jesus Christ offered himself but once in a bloody manner on the cross; but, besides this bloody offering, he still continues to offer himself in an unbloody manner. This he does both in heaven and upon earth; in heaven, by presenting his sacred humanity continually to his Father; and on earth, by daily offering himself, under the appearances of bread and wine, on our altars. Hence this eucharistic sacrifice is both a commemoration and continuation of the sacrifice of the cross. To understand this, it must be observed, that the essence of a sacrifice includes several actions, the principal of which are the immolation of the victim, and the oblation of the victim when immolated. Now the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross, ended only as to the bloody immolation; the same victim is still immolated mystically, by the separate consecration of the bread and wine, and continues as the oblation. Jesus Christ, in quality of the eternal high priest, has carried his victim, that is his body, into heaven, and there offers it continually to his Father. He continues also his sacrifice here on earth, by the ministry of his priests: who to the end of time will offer to God the same immolated victim, present on our altars under the appearance of bread and wine---a sacrifice infinitely perfect, since a God is the priest, and a God the victim. The chief-priest who offers it is a God-man; the victim offered is a Man-God: a God the victim, offered by a God the priest! Behold a sacrifice truly worthy of God---a sacrifice capable of atoning not only for our sins, but for the sins of ten thousand worlds. What confidence then ought Christians to have in such a sacrifice! How solicitous ought they to be to assist daily at these awful, or, to use St. Chrysostom's expression, these tremendous mysteries! Let us now examine the sentiments of learned Protestant divines: "It is certain," says Dr. Grabe, "that Irenaeus and all the Fathers, either contemporary with the apostles, or their immediate successors, whose writings are still extant, considered the blessed Eucharist to be the sacrifice of the new law, and offered bread and wine on the altar, as sacred oblations to God the Father; and that this was not the private opinion of any particular Church or teacher, but the public doctrine and practice of the universal Church, which she received from the apostles, and they from Christ, is expressly shewn by Irenaeus, and before him by Justin Martyr and Clement of Rome." (Nota in Irenaeum. p. 323.) --- "The elements being really changed from ordinary bread and wine into the body and blood of Christ, mystically present, as in a sacrament, and that by virtue of the consecration, not by the faith of him that receives, I am to admit and maintain whatsoever appears duly consonant with this truth, viz. that the elements so consecrated are truly the sacrifice of Christ upon the cross, inasmuch as the body and blood of Christ are contained in them. ... And the sacrifice of the cross being necessarily propitiatory, and impetratory both, it cannot be denied that the sacrament of the Eucharist, inasmuch as it is the same sacrifice with that upon the cross, is also both propitiatory and impetratory." (Thorndike Epil. p. 44 and 46.) --- "The holy Fathers frequently say, that in the Eucharist is offered and sacrificed the very body of Christ, as is evident in almost innumerable places." (Bp. Forbes' de Euch. lib. iii. Hebrews 2. sect. 10.) --- "The sacrifice of the supper is not only propitiatory, and may be offered up for the remission of our daily sins, but likewise is impetratory, and may be rightly offered for the obtaining all blessings. Although the Scripture does not plainly and in express words teach this, yet the holy Fathers with universal consent have thus understood the Scripture, as has been demonstrated by many; and all the ancient liturgies prescribe, that in time of the oblation, prayers be offered for peace, etc. as is evident to all." (Bp. Forbes' de Euch. lib. 3:chap. 2. sect. 12.) --- "The Church, commemorating the sacrifice of Christ with the usual rites and words, in this also sacrificeth and offereth that which is her own, given to her by Christ; that she placeth before the eyes of God; by that she beseecheth God; and it is the same sacrifice that Christ offered; the same one, true, and singular sacrifice, as St. Augustine calls it; a sacrifice of memory according to Eusebius; a spiritual sacrifice, according to others. After that the faithful offer themselves according to the example of Christ, etc. In all this what is there new, what deformed, what hurtful? But minds once distracted, distract all things into a depraved meaning, and then are glad to find a hint for it in any of the schools." (Grotius of Christian sacrifice.) --- To these we may add the authority of Ed. Burke, in his speech to the electors of Bristol: "The mass is church service in the Latin tongue, not exactly like our liturgy, but very near, and contains no offence whatever against the laws of good morals." (p. 29.)
Hebrews 7:28 For the law maketh men priests, who have infirmity; but the word of the oath, which is after the law, the Son who is perfected for evermore.

Hebrews 8:0 More of the excellence of the priesthood of Christ, and of the New Testament.

Hebrews 8:1 Now of the things spoken, the sum is: We have such an high priest, who is set on the right hand of the throne of majesty in the heavens;

Of the things spoken{ Ver. 1. Capitulum super ea quae dicuntur, kephalaion epi tois legomenois. Beza and others reprehend here the ancient Latin interpreter. They have as much reason to blame the Greek original. St. Augustine observes that the Latin interpreter was more solicitous to follow exactly the sense than to write proper Latin.|} the sum is. This word sum, many expound, as if St. Paul said: I will sum up, and give you an abridgment or recapitulation of what I have said. But St. Chrysostom and others, by the Greek would rather understand the chief, or greatest thing of all, when he adds, that Christ is our high priest, who is set on the right hand of the throne of majesty in the heavens. (Witham)
Hebrews 8:2 A minister of the holies, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord hath pitched, and not man.

A minister of the holies. Literally, of the holy places, and of the true tabernacle: he adds true, to signify that though he speaks with an allusion to the sanctuary, and the priests of the former law, yet that Christ hath now entered into the true holy of holies; that is, into heaven, of which the Jewish sanctuary was only a type or figure. --- Which the Lord hath pitched, and not man; that is all the parts of the Jewish sanctuary was the work of men's hands; but heaven, the habitation prepared for the saints, is the work of God. (Witham) --- The Old Testament was a figure of the New; but the tabernacle of Moses, and the temple of Solomon, were in particular an image and figure of the Christian Church, ver. 5. The Church triumphant in heaven is the true sanctuary; the Church militant on earth is the true tabernacle; and Jesus Christ is the sovereign priest of both the one and the other, and exercises his priesthood both in heaven and upon earth.
Hebrews 8:3 For every high priest is appointed to offer gifts and sacrifices: wherefore it is necessary that he also should have something to offer:

For every high priest, etc. That is, as all priests are ordained to offer up to God some gifts and sacrifices; so Christ, a priest for ever, has now in heaven something to offer to his eternal Father; to wit, the infinite merits and satisfactions of his death and passion. This he doth in heaven, and also by the ministry of his priests on earth, who offer the same in his name. (Witham) --- This is the daily sacrifice of Christians, foretold plainly by Malachias, Hebrews 1:10. 11. This is also clearly mentioned in St. Justin Martyr, Dial. cum Tryphone.; Tertullian, co. M.[contra Marcion?] lib. 3:chap. 21.; St. Irenaeus, lib. 4:chap. 32.; St. Cyprian, lib. I. adv. Jud.; Eusebius, lib. 1:Dem. Evan.; St. Chrysostom, in Psalm xcv.; St. Augustine, lib. xviii. de civ. Dei. Hebrews 35, etc. etc. For authorities see annotations on chapter 10. of this epistle. The apostate Courayer, who pretending to remain a Catholic, ended by becoming a Socinian or Unitarian, taught that persons were at liberty to deny the real presence, and admit with Catholics a commemorative or representative sacrifice, which applies to us the merits of Christ's death. But this system was condemned by the Gallican church, as contrary to the doctrine of the Council of Trent, which has defined the mass to be not merely a commemorative and representive sacrifice, but a true and real offering of a victim, really present, and actually offered to God by the priest. "By his last sentiments, (published by Dr. Bell) it appears, says the New Gen. Biogr. Dict. edited by Chalmers, an. 1814[A.D. 1814], vol. lxxx. art. Courayer, that although he professed to die a member of the Roman Catholic Church, he could not well be accounted a member of that, or of any other established Church. In rejecting the doctrine of the Trinity, he became nearly, if not quite, a Socinian, or modern Unitarian; he denied also the inspiration of the holy Scriptures, as to matters of fact; and as to baptism, seems to wish to confine it to adults. In 1811 a more full exposure of his sentiments was published by Dr. Bell, in a posthumous work of Courayer, on the Divinity of Jesus Christ, 8vo. a publication we have little hesitation in saying ought never to have appeared. It could not be wanting to illustrate the wavering, unsettled character of the author. The creed of innovators is never fixed; and when once they cast off the authority of the Church, they are carried about, like children, with every wind of doctrine."
Hebrews 8:4 If then he were on earth, he would not be a priest: seeing there would be others who should offer gifts according to the law,

If then he were on earth, he would not be a priest. He speaks of a priest according to the custom of the Jews, where none were priests but of the tribe of Levi, and Jesus Christ was of the tribe of Juda: and if the law of Moses was to continue, there would not be wanting priests to offer sacrifices according to their worship, though such priests were only employed about things that were types{ Ver. 4. Exemplari et umbrae deserviunt, upodeigmati, kai skia latreuousi. It signifies, that they served God by those things that were types and figures of more perfect and heavenly things.|} and shadows of heavenly things in the new law after Christ's coming, and of the sacrifice by which he offered himself on the cross. And this God doubtless revealed to Moses, when he said to him: take heed "thou make all things according to the pattern which was shewn thee on the mount." (Witham) --- Earth, etc. That is, if he were not of a higher condition than the Levitical order of earthly priests, and had not another kind of sacrifice to offer, he should be excluded by them from the priesthood, and its functions, which by the law were appropriated to their tribe. (Challoner)
Hebrews 8:5 Who serve unto the example and shadow of heavenly things. As it was answered to Moses, when he was to finish the tabernacle: See* (saith he) that thou make all things according to the pattern which was shewn thee on the mount.

Exodus 25:40.; Acts 7:44.
Who serve unto, etc. The priesthood of the law and its functions were a kind of an example, and shadow of what is done by Christ in his Church militant [on earth] and triumphant [in heaven], of which the tabernacle was a pattern. (Challoner)
Hebrews 8:6 But now he hath obtained a better ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a better testament, which is established on better promises.

But now Christ, the Messias, being come, hath ordained a more excellent ministry and priesthood, being the great Mediator betwixt God and man of a better and more excellent testament, accompanied with greater graces and blessings, and established with better and more ample promises, not of temporal blessings, as the former, but of eternal happiness. (Witham)
Hebrews 8:7 For if the former had been faultless, there should not indeed a place have been sought for a second.

For if that first testament had been faultless: if it had not been imperfect, and all those sacrifices and ceremonies insufficient for the justification, salvation, and redemption of mankind, there would have been no need of a second. (Witham)
Hebrews 8:8 For finding fault with them, he saith: *Behold, the days shall come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new testament with the house of Israel and with the house of Juda,

Jeremias 31:31.
For finding fault with them. It is not said here, blaming the law, says St. Chrysostom, which in itself was good, just, and holy, (see Romans 7:12.) but blaming the breakers and transgressors of it; not but that men were saved in the time of the law, who by God's grace believed in their Redeemer that was to come, and lived well. And the mercies of God were so great, even towards sinners, that he made them a solemn promise, clearly expressed in the prophet Jeremias, (Chap. 31:31. etc.) The days shall come, saith the Lord, and I will make a new covenant,...not according to the covenant (or not such a one) as I made to their fathers, at the time when I took them as it were by the hand to lead them out of....Egypt, etc. with signs and prodigies: I then made choice of them to be my people, but they were always transgressing against this testament, this covenant, which I had made with them: and for their transgressions I neglected them, punished them from time to time, and, what was the greatest punishment of all, permitted such ungrateful and obstinate offenders to run on in their own sinful ways to their own ruin. (Witham)
Hebrews 8:9 Not according to the testament which I made with their fathers, on the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt: for they continued not in my testament: and I regarded them not, saith the Lord.

Hebrews 8:10 For this is the testament which I will make to the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord: I will give my laws into their mind, and I will write them in their heart: and I will be their God, and they shall be my people:

For this is the testament which I will make with the house of Israel, and with all nations, as I promised to Abraham, I will give (literally, by giving) my laws into their mind, and I will write this new law, not as the former, in tables of stone, but in their hearts, and to them I will be a merciful God, and they shall be my elect people. (Witham) --- The Jews were like slaves, and God ruled them as a master; Christians are his children, and God rules them as a father: and so great is the efficacy of this divine teacher, that by means of a short and easy catechism, children are now taught to know God more perfectly than the first sages of antiquity by their abstruse and erudite disquisitions. We moreover observe under the new law the grace and spirit of love, engrafted in the hearts of the faithful by the Holy Ghost working in the sacraments and sacrifice of the new law to that effect....This covenant was made at the last supper, and ratified the next day by the death of the Testator on the cross, when he exclaimed, "consummatum est," all is consummated. [John 19:30.]
Hebrews 8:11 And they shall not teach every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying: Know the Lord: for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest of them:

They shall not teach, etc. So great shall be the light and grace of the new testament, that it shall not be necessary to inculcate to the faithful the belief and knowledge of the true God, for they shall all know him. (Challoner) --- All shall know me, etc. This seems to signify that by the truths which Christ preached, and which the apostles published to all nations, the faithful in the new law should have a greater knowledge of God, of the true manner of worshipping him, and of heavenly things, and also greater and more abundant graces than they had before Christ's coming. They shall also serve God with greater fidelity, by considering his mercy in sending them a Redeemer to free them from the slavery of sin and damnation, of which they stood guilty. (Witham)
Hebrews 8:12 Because I will be merciful to their iniquities, and their sins I will remember no more.

Hebrews 8:13 Now in saying a new, he hath made the former old. And that which decayeth and groweth old, is near its end.

In calling this testament a new one, he hath made the former old. This is to put the Hebrews in mind that the former law, as to its ceremonies and sacrifices, is now to be laid aside, and the new law or testament to be received and complied with. (Witham) --- Thus the first alliance was to end according to the testimony of Scripture itself, and make place for the second, which is infinitely more perfect. To be fully satisfied of this, it is merely necessary to compare the one with the other. (Bible de Vence.)
Hebrews 9:0 The sacrifices of the law were far inferior to that of Christ.

Hebrews 9:1 The former indeed had ordinances of worship, and a worldly sanctuary.

The former.{ Ver. 1. Habuit et prius, eiche e prote. Though almost all Greek copies have skene, tabernacle: yet even the Protestant translators add in a different print, covenant, as if diatheke was understood. Ibid.[Ver. 1.] Sanctum saeculare, kosmikon. This Greek word is only found in one other place in the New Testament, Titus 2:12., saecularia desideria.|} In the ordinary Greek copies is expressed the former tabernacle; but even the Protestant translators have abandoned that reading, and understand the former testament or covenant, which they have put in a different character. --- Worldly sanctuary, or a temporal sanctuary, to last only for a time, like the things of this world. (Witham) -- The word ordinances (dikaiomata) is frequently used for the laws and ordinances of God, because the observance of the laws is the justification of man; see particularly in the 118th Psalm, the legal rites justified in regard to the outward policy of the Jews.
Hebrews 9:2 *For the first tabernacle was made, wherein were the candlesticks, and the table, and the setting forth of loaves, which is called the holy.

Exodus 26:1.; Exodus 36:8.
First tabernacle. By this word is signified, the sanctuary or place for worshipping God, ordained by Moses, which was an oratory to be moved from place to place with the Israelites, which they kept afterwards, and had a resemblance of it in the temple. This tabernacle consisted of two parts, which St. Paul here calls the first and second. The first part was called the holy, which was separated from the rest of the temple by a veil. In this first part were the candlesticks, that is one candlestick, as it is called, Exodus 25:37., having seven branches in which were placed lamps; and a table, on which were placed twelve loaves, according to the number of the Jewish tribes, to be changed every week. (Witham)
Hebrews 9:3 And after the second veil, the tabernacle, which is called the holy of holies:

And after the second veil, or partition, was the second or inward part, or that part called the holy of holies. (Witham) --- The first veil was at the entrance of the holy place, and separated it from the outward court; the second veil separated the holy place from the holy of holies.
Hebrews 9:4 Having a golden *censer, and the ark of the covenant covered about on every part with gold, in which was the golden urn that had the manna, and the rod of Aaron that had blossomed, and the *tables of the testament.

Leviticus 16.; Numbers 26.; 3 Kings 8:9.; 2 Paralipomenon 5:10.
Having the golden censer. What is meant by this is uncertain, no mention being made of a golden censer in either part of the tabernacle made by the order of Moses, which the apostle here speaks of. Some say that the high priest, when he entered once a year into the holy of holies, made use of a golden censer, which he left there: but this is merely a conjecture. Others think that by the golden censer is meant the altar of perfumes, or where perfumes were burnt, which was, as it were a large censer, and is called by the same Greek word by Josephus, the historian; but then there occurs this difficulty, that this altar was in that first part called the holy, not in the holy of holies, to which the same interpreters answer, that this altar was placed just at the entrance into the holy of holies, and so may be looked upon as belonging to the holy of holies: not does the text say it was in the holy of holies, but only having, etc. as a town may be said to have fortifications which are not within the town itself. --- And the tables of the testament, or covenant. The ark was certainly in the holy of holies, in which{ Ver. 4. Habens thuribulum aureum, chrusoun echousa thumiaterion. Josephus useth the same word for the altar of perfumes, lib. 6. The Jewish War, ch. VI. and lib. 3. Jewish Antiquities, ch. VII. Ibid.[Ver. 4.] In qua, en e. It may signify the same as cum qua.|} was the golden urn, with a measure of manna, and Aaron's rod that budded, and the tables of the testament, or the tables of stone, on which were engraven the ten commandments. Nothing but these tables were within the ark: (see 3 Kings viii. and 2 Paralipomenon 5:10.) so that when it is said, in which was the golden urn and the rod of Aaron, the meaning seems to be, that they were indeed in the holy of holies with the ark, but not within the ark. (Witham) --- In the Greek it is easy to confound the word thusiasterion, which signifies altar, with thumiaterion, which means censer. It was placed adjoining the inward veil, so that the clouds of the incense filled the holy of holies; and hence it is mentioned by St. Paul as contained therein. --- The apostle describes these things as they were in the tabernacle which Moses constructed in the desert. (Bible de Vence) --- We see with what great and continued respect and veneration the manna and Aaron's rod, etc. were kept by the Jews, and shall not Christians be allowed to preserve with equal respect the monuments of God's mercies, and tokens of Christ's passion? See St. Cyril, (lib. 4:contra Julianum) where he defends against the apostate, the keeping and honouring the cross on which Christ died. See also in St. Jerome (ep. xvii. Hebrews 5.) and in St. Paulinus, (ep. 11.) what reverence the faithful in those early periods of the Church paid to the sepulchres of Christ and his martyrs, as also to their relics. "We reverence and worship[honour]," says the latter, "the sepulchres of the martyrs; and, if we can, we apply the holy ashes to our eyes and mouth."
Hebrews 9:5 And over it were the cherubims of glory overshadowing the propitiatory: of which it is not needful to speak now particularly.

And over it (the ark) were cherubims of glory or glorious cherubims, (in what shape they were represented, is not certain) overshadowing the propitiatory, or seat of mercy, which was all of gold, of the same size as the ark, and like a cover to it. Just over this propitiatory were placed the two cherubs, spreading their wings looking towards one another, and upon the propitiatory. See Exodus xxxvi. and xxxvii. From this place God made known his presence, and the effects of his mercy to the people. Here he was said to be seated on the cherubims, and that the ark was his footstool. Psalm xcviii., Adore his footstool; that is prostrate before his ark. These two images of cherubs, shew that God did not absolutely forbid images at that time, when the people were so addicted to idolatry, but only to adore them. (Witham) --- How futile is it to object from the commandment that it is forbidden to use holy images in the Church, when we here behold even amongst the people most prone to idolatry, most gross in their ideas of spiritual things, and to whom the precept was specially given not to make any graven idols, the same God commanding these images of angels to be made and set in the most holy place of the tabernacle or temple.
Hebrews 9:6 Now these things being thus ordered: into the first tabernacle the priests indeed always entered, accomplishing the rites of the sacrifices:

The rites of the sacrifices. The priests, as he tells us, entered every day, that is, by turns, (see Luke 1:5.) to make the offering of incense morning and night, also to change the loaves, take care of the lamps, etc. But we must not think that they offered in that place victims or holocausts of sheep, lambs, oxen, etc. This was not done in any part of the sanctuary, neither before nor after the building of the temple, but in a place or court adjoining the tabernacle, upon a large altar of five cubits long and as many broad. See Exodus xxvii. and xxxviii. (Witham)
Hebrews 9:7 But into the second, the high priest alone, *once a year; not without blood, which he offereth for his own, and the people's ignorance:

Exodus 30:10.; Leviticus 16:2.
Into the second part of the sanctuary, (that is, the holy of holies) no one entered but the high priest, and he but once a year, on the feast called of expiation, to make an aspersion of blood upon the ark and round about, which he offereth for his own and the people's ignorance, or ignorances, as in the Greek; that is, for all his and their sins. See Leviticus 10. (Witham) --- He offered the blood of a calf for his own sins and those of his family, and the blood of a goat for the sins of the people. (Leviticus xvi.)
Hebrews 9:8 The Holy Ghost signifying this, that the way of the holies was not yet made manifest, whilst the former tabernacle was yet standing.

The Holy Ghost signifying this. Here the apostle begins to tell us in what manner the sanctuary was a figure of things in the new law of Christ. The holy of holies was a figure of heaven, and this prohibition of any one going into it, was to signify that the way to heaven was not to be made manifest, nor to be opened, as long as the former tabernacle and law subsisted; that it was not to be opened till Christ, the high priest of the new testament, first entered, by shedding his blood on the cross, and by his glorious ascension. (Witham) --- But when Christ expired, the veil of temple was rent asunder, to shew that the way to heaven was now laid open to mankind.
Hebrews 9:9 Which is a parable of the time then present: according to which gifts and sacrifices are offered, which cannot, as to the conscience, make him perfect that serveth only in meats and in drinks,

\f + \fr 9:9-10\ft Which is a parable of the time then present; or, unto the present time, as in the Greek. By the present time, according to the common exposition, is not meant the time of the new law, as some would have it, but the time of the former law; so that the sense is, which parable or type was a representation of things as they were to be performed, and to last during the time of the law, which was before present. --- According to which. Some understand, according to which time; others, according to which parable, type, or typical worship of the former law, gifts and sacrifices are (that is, were, and are) still offered by those who adhere to the Jewish law and ceremonies, which cannot of themselves make such worshippers perfect in conscience; that is can never give true interior sanctification, being only in meats, and drinks, and baptisms, etc. These words must not be referred to gifts and sacrifices, but to the worshipper; (literally, server) and the sense is, that to the priests, who worshipped and served God in the sanctuary and in offering sacrifices, was not prescribed an interior purity and sanctity, as in the new law, but only that legal sanctity which consisted in abstaining from such meats or drinks as were called unclean, or made them unclean. See Leviticus 10:9., where the priests are forbidden to drink wine when they were to enter into the tabernacle of the testimony. --- In divers washings, etc. These precepts and ceremonies were only to last till the time of their correction, by the coming of Christ under the new and better law and testament. (Witham) --- Of correction; viz. when Christ should correct and settle all things. (Challoner)
Hebrews 9:10 And divers washings, and carnal ordinances, enjoined until the time of correction.

Hebrews 9:11 But Christ coming, a high priest of the good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is, not of this creation:

Christ coming{ Ver. 11. Christus assistens, paragenomenos, which may signify being come, and present. Ibid.[Ver. 11.] Tabernaculum, skenes, by which St. Chrysostom expounds his body or flesh, ten sarka entautha legei log. ie. p. 513.|} is a high priest of the good things to come; of things which we hope for in heaven. --- He has entered by a more perfect tabernacle; that is not passing, like the priests of the former law, into a tabernacle made by human art and hands, but by the tabernacle of his own body or flesh, says St. Chrysostom, framed by the Holy Ghost. (Witham)
Hebrews 9:12 Neither by the blood of goats, or of calves, but by his own blood, entered once into the sanctuary, having obtained eternal redemption.

By the blood of goats, etc. This is another difference and pre-eminence of Christ above the priests of the law of Moses, that they could only offer the blood of beasts; but Christ entered into heaven by the effusion of his own precious blood in his sufferings, and on the cross, by this having found an eternal redemption for mankind, having satisfied for the sins of all men in the sight of God, which the former priests, with all their sacrifices, could not do. (Witham) --- Eternal redemption. By that one sacrifice of his blood, once offered on the cross, Christ our Lord paid and exhibited, once for all, the general price and ransom of all mankind; which no other priest could do. (Challoner) --- The force of the apostle's reasoning is to convince the Jews of the inefficacy of the legal sacrifices, and of the virtue of the Christian sacrifice.
Hebrews 9:13 *For if the blood of goats and of oxen, and the ashes of a heifer, being sprinkled, sanctify such as are defiled, to the cleansing of the flesh:

Leviticus 16:15.
\f + \fr 9:13-14\ft For if the blood of goats, etc. Another main difference betwixt the sacrifices in the old, and that of Christ in the new law. Those imperfect carnal sacrifices could only make the priests and the people reputed clean, so that they were no longer to be treated as transgressors, and liable to punishments, prescribed and inflicted by the law: but the sacrifice of Christ has made our consciences interiorly clean, and sanctified them even in the sight of God. Having offered himself unspotted to God by the Holy Ghost, the divine Spirit of the Holy Ghost moving Christ as man to make this oblation of himself, though free from all sin, and incapable of sinning. And being this oblation, made by him, who was God as well as man, it was an oblation of infinite value, which repaired the injury done to God by sin, and redeemed mankind from the slavery of sin. (Witham) --- Here we have an abstract of the passion of Jesus Christ, or of the sacrifice of the cross. We see who is the priest, and who is the victim; we see the virtue and efficacy of this sacrifice, and why it was offered; also by what signs we may know whether we partake of it, viz. if dying to sin and to the world, we live to God, and serve him in spirit and truth. Calvin makes Jesus Christ a priest and mediator, according to his divinity; but in that case Christ would be inferior to his Father, not only as man, but according to his divinity: for the priest is inferior to the God to whom he offers sacrifice, which is an expression of supreme excellence. See Dr. Kellison's survey of the Protestant religion.
Hebrews 9:14 *How much more shall the blood of Christ, who, through the Holy Ghost, offered himself without spot to God, cleanse our conscience from dead works, to serve the living God?

1 Peter 1:19.; 1 John 1:7.; Apocalypse 1:5.
Hebrews 9:15 And, therefore, he is the mediator of the new testament: *that by means of his death, for the redemption of those transgressions, which were under the former testament, they who are called may receive the promise of eternal inheritance.

Galatians 3:15.
And therefore he is the mediator of the new testament.{ Ver. 15. Novi Testamenti, diathekes kaines. The Protestant translators here found it necessary to put, not covenant, as in other places, but testament, even when the apostle speaks of the first, or old diatheke, (Ver. 18. and 20.) might they not then as well have translated Testament in the last chapter, especially when mention was there made of the New Testament in the prophecy of Jeremias? might they not as well have translated, (Galatians 4:24.) for these are two testaments, as these are two covenants? and so in other places, where there is the same Greek word diatheke. Mr. N. has followed the Protestant translation. The Septuagint put diatheke for the Hebrew word Berith, which indeed is expounded to signify foedus or pactum; that is, any agreement, alliance, or covenant, which in the Greek is rather sutheke than diatheke. See Scapula. We may, I believe, safely say that Berith also signifies testament, or a last will and testament, till they who are translating it by covenant, can shew us some other Hebrew word for testamentum, which I think they have not hitherto done. I find that Mr. Legh, in his Crit. Sac. on the primitive Hebrew words, writes thus: Berith signifieth both suntheken, a compact or covenant between parties, as Aquila translateth; and diatheke, a testament or disposition of one's last will, as the Septuagint translate. He cites in the Margin Drusius and Mercerus.|} The mediator, so as to be our Redeemer, which applies only to our Saviour, Christ. Moses is called a mediator betwixt God and his people. See (Galatians 3:19.; 1 Timothy 2:5.) etc. The saints in heaven, and men on earth, may be called mediators in an inferior and different sense: but Christ alone is the mediator who reconciled God to men, by satisfying for their sins, and by a redemption from the slavery of sin. This sense, in which Christ is the mediator of the New Testament is expressed in these following words: that by means of his death, for the redemption of those transgressions which were under the former testament, they who are called may receive the promise of eternal inheritance; that is, Christ by his death, redeemed all men. He names in particular the sins of those under the former testament, to shew them that the sacrifices of the Mosaical law could not of themselves obtain a remission of sins, so that all saved from Adam, or that shall be saved to the end of the world, have their sins forgiven, and obtain salvation by virtue of Christ's sacrifice upon the cross. He paid the ransom of their sins, and is the Redeemer of all. (Witham)
Hebrews 9:16 For where there is a testament, the death of the testator must of necessity intervene.

For where there is a testament, the death of the testator, etc. The same Greek word, corresponding to the Hebrew word Berith, is often used both in the books of the old and new Scriptures. The ancient Latin interpreter puts for it testamentum, a testament: but others would rather have the Hebrew and Greek word to signify any agreement, bargain, alliance, or covenant, which last word is generally put in the English Protestant translations, followed also by Mr. N. We do not deny but the Hebrew and Greek word have this signification, but not exclusively: this place of St. Paul shews evidently that they also signify what both in Latin and English is called a testament or last will, which is only of force by the death of the testator. The Protestants, therefore, here find themselves obliged to translate testament, contrary to their custom, and to apply this word not only to the promises and blessings God made to Christians, of which Christ is the mediator, and which were confirmed by his blood and by his death, but also to the former alliance and promises or blessings God made to the Israelites, when he chose them to be his elect people, and gave them his law and his commandments under Moses. It is true God is immortal in his own nature, cannot die, and therefore cannot make a testament that shall be confirmed by his own death. But as for the new alliance, or New Testament, as here it must be called, it was confirmed by the death of the Son of God; that is, of God made man, by which it is true to say that God died for us, though he did not die, nor could die, as God. And as for the former alliance, or first testament, as it is called here, (ver. 18.) that, says St. Paul, (which was only a figure of the second or new testament) was not made nor ratified without the blood of so many victims as used to be offered and sacrificed. (Witham)
Hebrews 9:17 For a testament is of force, after men are dead: otherwise it is not yet of force, whilst the testator liveth.

Hebrews 9:18 Whereupon neither was the first indeed dedicated without blood.

Hebrews 9:19 For when every commandment of the law had been read by Moses to all the people, he took the blood of calves and goats, with water and scarlet wool, and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book itself and all the people,

Hebrews 9:20 Saying: *This is the blood of the testament, which God hath enjoined unto you.

Exodus 24:8.
This is the blood of the testament, which God hath enjoined unto you; (Exodus xxiv.) that is, this is to confirm that testament. Christ made use of the like words, when he bequeathed us the divine legacy of his Body and Blood, at his last supper, saying: (Matthew 26:28.) This is my blood of the new testament. And as the words of Exodus were understood of the true blood of the victims offered, so the words of Christ signify the true blood of Christ, there really present in the sacrament, in a spiritual manner, and to be shed in a bloody manner upon the cross. (Witham) --- The correspondence of words, in dedicating both testaments, proveth the real presence of blood in the cup or chalice.
Hebrews 9:21 The tabernacle also and all the vessels of the ministry, in like manner, he sprinkled with blood.

Hebrews 9:22 And almost all things, according to the law, are cleansed with blood: and without the shedding of blood, there is no remission.

St. Paul speaks here of legal purifications and remissions, which (ver. 10.) he calls carnal justices and ordinances, (ver. 13.) purifying the flesh. How then, it may be asked, were sins remitted under the law? I answer, by true repentance, joined with faith and hope in the promised Messias. As to the cleansings and expiations of the Mosaic law, they were generally effected by water and animal blood, and were typical of the real cleansing of the conscience by the water of baptism, and by the blood of Jesus Christ. The flowing, therefore, of the pure water and blood from the wound in Christ's side, denoted that the real expiation was now complete, and the cleansing font set open; and on this account, they are appealed to by St. John, as two of the three terrestrial witnesses, whose testimony is so efficacious for the confirmation of our faith, that the crucified Jesus was the Christ foretold by the prophets. [John 19:34; 1 John 5:6, 8.] And thus "the old law confirms the new, and the new fulfils the old." (St. Paulinus)
Hebrews 9:23 It is necessary, therefore, that the patterns of heavenly things should be cleansed with these; but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these.

It is, or was necessary that the patterns of heavenly things (that is, the former tabernacle and sanctuary) should be cleansed with these; that is, by the blood of such victims then offered. --- But the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices. By the heavenly things, may be understood the faithful, who are the members of Christ's Church, to whom heaven is prepared, and who must be cleansed by better sacrifices; that is, by the blood of Christ, and by his sacrifice on the cross. (Witham)
Hebrews 9:24 For Jesus hath not entered into the holies made with hands, the patterns of the true: but into heaven itself, that he may appear now in the presence of God for us:

Hebrews 9:25 Nor yet that he should offer himself often, as the high priest entereth into the holies every year with the blood of others:

Should offer himself, etc. He takes notice that Christ, by virtue of his sacrifice, and his dying once on the cross, satisfied for the sins of all men that ever were from the beginning of the world. It was decreed from eternity that the Son of God should come to redeem mankind: the ransom that was not yet paid was accepted; and all might be saved who believed in their Redeemer, who was to come, and who, by the graces that God offered and gave them, lived well. (Witham) --- Christ shall never more offer himself in sacrifice, in that violent, painful, and bloody manner, nor can there be any occasion for it; since by that one sacrifice upon the cross, he has furnished the full ransom, redemption, and remedy for all the sins of the world. But this hinders not that he may offer himself in the sacred mysteries in an unbloody manner, for the daily application of that one sacrifice of redemption to our souls. (Challoner)
Hebrews 9:26 For then he ought to have suffered often from the beginning of the world: but now once at the end of ages, he hath appeared for the destruction of sin, by the sacrifice of himself.

He came at the end of the ages, as it were in the last age of the world, to the putting away or abrogating of sin. (Witham) --- Though less, viz. a single tear, might have satisfied the justice of God, nothing less than his own precious blood could satisfy the charity of Jesus Christ. By his death, as St. Augustine observes, Christ has bound the devil in a chain, so that he can tempt us no further than we are able to resist: he may bark, he may tempt, he may solicit us; but he can bite none, except those that wilfully cast themselves within his reach. (Serm. 1. post Trin.)
Hebrews 9:27 And as it is appointed for men once to die, and after this the judgment:

Hebrews 9:28 *So also Christ was offered once to exhaust the sins of many; the second time he shall appear without sin to them that expect him unto salvation.

Romans 5:9.; 1 Peter 3:18.
To exhaust the sins of many. That is, of all, according to the style of the Scriptures. When he came first, he took upon him the load of our sins; but at his second coming, at the end of the world, he will come in a quite different manner, not as laden with our sins, not after the similitude of a sinful man, not to redeem us, but with great power and majesty to judge all men. (Witham) --- To exhaust. That is, to empty or draw out to the very bottom, by a plentiful and perfect redemption. (Challoner)
Hebrews 10:0 Because of the insufficiency of the sacrifices of the law, Christ, our high priest, shed his own blood for us, offering up once for all the sacrifice of our redemption. He exhorts them to perseverance.

Hebrews 10:1 For the law having a shadow of the good things to come, not the very image of the things: can never with those same sacrifices which, they offer continually every year, make the comers thereunto perfect:

The law having a shadow{ Ver. 1. Umbram,...non ipsam imaginem rerum, skian, ouk auten ten eikona. It seems hard to take eikona for the things themselves represented; but only to signify, expressam imaginem.|} of the good things to come. The apostle continues till the 19th verse to shew the insufficiency of the former law, as to the redemption and salvation of mankind. By the good things to come, some understand heaven itself, and the happiness of the elect there, of which the law was but a shadow, whereas we have a much more perfect image and knowledge of heaven in the new law, than they who were under the former law. Others by good things to come, understand the blessings of interior graces, with a remission of our sins in the sight of God, and true sanctification, of which all the sacrifices and sacraments of the old law, without faith in Christ, were but a shadow: and now in the new law we have an express image of them, that is we have these blessings themselves. (Witham)
Hebrews 10:2 For then they would have ceased to be offered: because the worshippers once cleansed should have no conscience of sin any longer:

Then they would have{ Ver. 2. Alioquin cessassent offerri. In the ordinary Greek copies, epei an ouk epausanto prospheromenai; but in other manuscripts ouk is left out.|} ceased to be offered. That is, if they could have made the worshippers perfect; to wit, in such a manner as the one sacrifice of Christ, who was the Lamb of God that took away the sins of the world, by making a full reparation to the divine justice for the sin of Adam, and of all his offspring. For we must take notice that he compares the sacrifice of Christ, which wrought a general redemption, with the sacrifices of the former law, which could never make any sufficient atonement to the majesty of God offended by sin, and which, by the decree of heaven, were to cease as soon as Christ's sacrifice of a general redemption was made: for then the worshippers would be so cleansed from sin, that they would stand in need of no more, but that the merits and satisfactions of Christ, their Redeemer, should be applied to them according to the order of God's providence; that is, by faith in Christ, by his sacraments, by a true repentance, and the practice of virtue and good works. (Witham) --- If they had been of themselves perfect to all the intents of redemption and remission, as Christ's death is, there would have been no occasion of so often repeating them; as there is no occasion for Christ's dying any more for our sins. (Challoner)
Hebrews 10:3 But in them a remembrance of sins is made every year.

\f + \fr 10:3-4\ft But in them a remembrance of sins is made every year. For it is impossible that with the blood of oxen and goats sins should be taken way. The sacrifices of the former law, even that great sacrifice on the day of expiation, when victims were offered for the ignorances or sins of the priests, and of all the people, were only types and figures of Christ's sacrifice upon the cross, it was impossible that they themselves should take away sins, like that one oblation of Christ, though in them was made a remembrance of sins, and of the same sins for which so many victims had been offered. (Witham)
Hebrews 10:4 For it is impossible that with the blood of oxen and goats sin should be taken away.

Hebrews 10:5 Therefore coming into the world, he saith: *Sacrifice and oblation thou wouldst not: but a body thou hast fitted to me:

Psalm 39:7.
\f + \fr 10:5-9\ft Therefore, Christ as it were, coming into the world, he saith, by the psalmist, (Psalm 39:7. 8.) Sacrifice and oblation thou didst not desire, etc. That is, such sacrifices as were offered in the former law, they could not please thee, appease thy anger, nor make a sufficient reparation for sin. --- But a { Ver. 5. Corpus autem aptasti mihi; soma de katartiso moi; that is according to the Septuagint but in the Hebrew aures perfodisti, or as in the Latin, (Psalm xxxix. 7.) perfecisti mihi. How these different expressions agree, see Estius, Cornelius a Lapide, etc.|} body thou hast fitted to me. Thou didst decree I should be made man, to suffer and die upon a cross to redeem mankind. And I as willingly undertook the work of man's redemption. --- Behold I come: in the head of the book it is written of me.{ Ver. 7. In capite libri, en kephalidi bibliou. The Greek and Latin seems to signify no more than in the volume, or book itself; kephalis, says Suidas, oper tinos eilema, alicujus involucrum, ab eileo. No need of translating, in the front of the book.|} That is, in the volumes of the Scriptures. --- He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second. That is, he taketh away what I first mentioned, the imperfect sacrifices of the law of Moses, that to them might succeed the sacrifice of Christ. (Witham)
Hebrews 10:6 Holocausts for sin did not please thee.

Hebrews 10:7 Then said I: Behold I come:* in the head of the book it is written of me: that I should do thy will, O God.

Psalm 39:8.
Hebrews 10:8 In saying before: Sacrifices and oblations, and holocausts, for sin thou wouldst not, neither are they pleasing to thee, which are offered according to the law.

Hebrews 10:9 Then said I: Behold, I come to do thy will, O God: he taketh away the first, that he may establish the second.

Hebrews 10:10 In which will, we are sanctified by the oblation of the body of Jesus Christ once.

The source and primary cause of our sanctification is the will of God, who so loved the world as to give us his only Son; the meritorious cause of our sanctification is the voluntary oblation of Jesus Christ, sacrificed for us upon the cross. Methodists shamefully misrepresent the tenets of Catholics, as if we excluded Christ from the work of our salvation, or hoped to be saved not by the merits of Christ, but by our own.
Hebrews 10:11 And every priest indeed standeth daily ministering, and often offering the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins:

Hebrews 10:12 But he offering one sacrifice for sins, for ever sitteth on the right hand of God,

Hebrews 10:13 From henceforth expecting *until his enemies be made his footstool.

Psalm 109:2.; 1 Corinthians 15:25.
Hebrews 10:14 For by one oblation he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.

By one oblation{ Ver. 14. Una oblatione, etc. mia prosphora. See St. Chrysostom (log. iz. p. 523. lin. 20. et seq.) ti oun emeis kath ekasten emeran ou prospheromen; prospheromen men, all anamnesin poioumenoi tou thanatou autou. kai mia estin aute, kai ou pollai....ton gar auton aei prospheromen....osper pollachou prosphomenos en soma esti. kai ou polla somata, outo kai mia thusia (et unum, sive idem sacrificium) o Archiereus emon ekeinos esti, o ten thusian kathaiousan zmas prosnegkon. ekeinen prospheromen kai non, ten tote prosenechtheisen, etc.|} he hath perfected or consummated for ever them that are sanctified, or justified, because this one oblation was sufficient to sanctify all men. He repeats this, to shew them the excellency of Christ's sacrifice above those of the former law. (Witham)
Hebrews 10:15 And the Holy Ghost also doth testify to us. For after he said:

\f + \fr 10:15-18\ft The Holy Ghost also doth testify to us, and assures us of this, by the prophet Jeremias, (Chap. 31:33.) in the words above cited, (Chap. 8:8.) when he promises to give a new testament, and that he will remember no more their sins. --- Now where there is remission of these, there is no more an oblation for sin. That is, there is no need of any other oblation to redeem us from sin, after the price of our redemption from sin is paid. There is no need of any other different oblation; all that is wanting, is the application of the merits and satisfactions of Christ. No need of those sacrifices, which were ordered in the law of Moses. To convince them of this, is the main design of St. Paul in this place. The pretended reformers, from several expressions of St. Paul in this chapter, think they have clear proofs that no sacrifice at all ought to be offered after Christ's one sacrifice on the cross; and that so many sacrifices and oblations of masses, are both needless and against the doctrine of the apostle, who says, that Christ by one oblation hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified. (ver. 14.) And again, that where there is a remission of sins, now there is no more an oblation for sin. This objection, which is obvious enough, was not first invented by the Calvinists against them they nickname Papists: the same is found in the ancient Fathers; and by their answers, and what they have witnessed concerning the daily sacrifice of the mass, they may find their doctrine of a religion without a continued sacrifice evidently against the doctrine and practice of the Catholic Church from the first ages[centuries] of the Christian religion, till they came to be reformers, not of manners, but of the Catholic belief. Hear St. Chrysostom (hom. xvii.) in his commentary on this very chapter: "What then, saith he, do not we offer up (or make an oblation) every day? We offer up indeed, but with a remembrance of his death. And this oblation is one, and not many. How is it one, and not many? ...because, as he that is offered many times, and in many places, is the same body, not many and different bodies, so is it one sacrifice. He (Christ) is our high priest, who offered this sacrifice, by which we are cleansed: we now offer up the same....He said: Do this in remembrance of me. We do not offer a different sacrifice, but the very same, as then our high priest." St. Chrysostom here says, and repeats it over and over again, that we offer up a sacrifice. 2. That we offer it up every day. 3. That the sacrifice which we daily offer is one and the same oblation, one and the same sacrifice, which our high priest, Christ, offered. 4. That in offering this sacrifice, which in all places, and at all times, is the same body of Christ, and the same sacrifice, we do, and offer it, as he commanded us at his last supper, with a remembrance of him. Is this the practice, and is this the doctrine of our dear countrymen, the English Protestants? But at least it is the constant doctrine, as well as practice, of the whole Catholic Church. The council of Trent, as we have already cited the words, (chap. 7.) teacheth the very same as St. Chrysostom who never says, as some one of late hath pretended, that what we offer is a remembrance only. As the sacrament of the Eucharist, according to the words of Christ in the gospel, is to be taken with a remembrance of him, and yet is not a remembrance only, but is his body and blood, so the sacrifice is to be performed with a remembrance of his benefits and sufferings, by his priests and ministers, but at the same time is a true and propitiatory sacrifice, the priests daily sacrifice, and offer up the same sacrifice, the manner only being different. The sacrifice and mass offered by Peter, is not different in the notion of a sacrifice or oblation from that of Paul, though the priests and their particular actions be different: the same sacrifice was offered by the apostles, and in all Christian ages; and the same sacrifice, according to the prophecy of Malachias, (chap. 1:ver. 11.) shall be offered in all nations to the end of the world. This doctrine and practice is not only witnessed by St. Chrysostom but generally by the ancient Fathers and interpreters, as we have taken notice in short in the annotations on St. Matthew. See St. Ignatius, in his epistle to the people of Smyrna; St. Justin Martyr, in his dialogue with Tryphon; St. Irenaeus, lib. 4. ch. XXXII. and XXXIV.; Tertullian, lib. de Velandis Virg.; Eusebius lib. 1. de demonst. Evang. Hebrews ult.[last]; St. Jerome, ep. ad Evangelu,; St. Ambrose, in Psalm 38. and on (Luke 1.) ; St. Augustine, lib. 16. de civ. Dei. ch. XXII. lib. cont. Advers. legis Hebrews 22. and lib. IX. Confess. ch. XII.; St. Chrysostom, hom. LX. ad Pop. Antiochenum. et hom. LXXII. in Matt.; The first general council of Nice[Nicaea]. --- But from this one oblation on the cross and remission of sins, obtained by our Saviour Christ, will our adversaries pretend insisting on the bare letter, that Christ has done all for us, and that we need do nothing, unless perhaps endeavour to catch hold of the justifying cloak of Christ's justice by faith only? At this rate the love of God and of our neighbour, a life of self-denials, such as Christ preached to every one in the gospel, the practices of prayer, fastings, almsdeeds, and all good works, the sacraments instituted by our Saviour Christ may be all safely laid aside; and we may conclude from hence, that all men's sins are remitted before they are committed. Into what extravagances do men run, when their private spirit pretends to follow the letter of the Holy Scriptures, and when they make their private judgment the supreme guide in matter of divine faith? It is very true, that Christ hath paid the ransom of all our sins, and his satisfactions are infinite; but to partake of the benefit of this general redemption, the merits and satisfaction of Christ are to be applied to our souls, and this by the order of Providence is to be done not only by faith but by other virtues, by good works, by the sacraments, and by repeating the oblation and the same sacrifice, the manner only being different, according to the doctrine and practice of the Catholic Church from the apostle's time. (Witham) --- Where there is a full remission of sins, as in baptism, there is no more occasion for a sin-offering to be made for such sins already remitted; and as for sins committed afterwards, they can only be remitted in virtue of the one oblation of Christ's death. (Challoner)
Hebrews 10:16 *And this is the testament which I will make unto them after those days, saith the Lord, I will give my laws in their hearts, and in their minds I will write them:

Jeremias 31:33.; Hebrews viii 8.
Hebrews 10:17 And their sins and iniquities I will remember no more.

Hebrews 10:18 Now where there is remission of these, there is no more an offering for sin.

Hebrews 10:19 Having therefore, brethren, a confidence in the entering into the sanctuary by the blood of Christ,

Having therefore, brethren, a confidence. Here begins as it were the second part of this epistle, in which the apostle exhorts the Hebrews to the practice of Christian virtues, to a firm hope, and confidence of entering with Christ into the holy of holies; that is into heaven. (Witham)
Hebrews 10:20 A new and living way, which he hath dedicated for us through the veil, that is to say, his flesh,

A new and living way; that is, having a new way, which he hath traced out and opened for us, by entering himself first into heaven, through the veil, that is through his flesh, or by taking upon him, our flesh or human nature. He speaks with an allusion and comparison with the high priest of the former law, who to enter into the sanctuary, was to pass through the veil of separation. He compares Christ's flesh or body to this veil, inasmuch as Christ entered into the sanctuary of heaven by his sufferings in the flesh, and by the death of his body on the cross; or, inasmuch as the divinity of Christ was hidden from us by the veil of his human nature, as the sanctuary was hidden from the people by its veils. (Witham)
Hebrews 10:21 And a high priest over the house of God:

And a high priest; that is and having a great priest, to wit, Christ, over the house of God, that is, over the Church, or over all the faithful, both in the Church militant on earth and in the Church triumphant in heaven. (Witham)
Hebrews 10:22 Let us draw near with a true heart in fulness of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with clean water.

Let us draw near with a full and firm faith, our hearts being cleansed and sprinkled from sin. He again alludes to that ceremony, by which the high priest of the Jews on the feast, called of expiation, sprinkled the people with the blood of the victim offered. (Witham) --- En plerophoria pisteos. The Protestant version gives erroneously, in full assurance of faith. See Ward's Errata.
Hebrews 10:23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering (for he is faithful who hath promised),

Hebrews 10:24 And let us consider one another to provoke unto charity and to good works:

Hebrews 10:25 Not forsaking our assembly as some are accustomed, but comforting one another, and so much the more as you see the day approaching.

Not forsaking our assembly.{ Ver. 25. Non deserentes collectionem nostram, me egkataleipontes ten episunagogen eauton, collectionem, congregationem.|} St. Chrysostom understands the assemblies of Christians, where they met to celebrate the divine mysteries. Others expound it of not leaving the faith and communion of the Catholic Church by turning apostates: this is confirmed by the following words: for if we sin wilfully,...there is now left no sacrifice for sins. The Novatian heretics understood no pardon for sins after baptism. St. Chrysostom and others understood no second baptism, wherewith to be cleansed in the same manner as before; but the most probable interpretation, and most agreeable to the text and doctrine of St. Paul, seems to be, that now remained no sacrifice for sins, that is no other sacrifice but that of Christ, which the apostate renouncing, by quitting and abandoning his faith, thereby cuts himself off from the very groundwork and foundation of salvation, as long as he continues in his apostacy. So that nothing remains for him but a dreadful expectation{ Ver. 27. Ignis aemulatio, puros zelos, thus attibuting zeal and rage to an inanimate thing.|} of God's just and severe judgments. (Witham)
Hebrews 10:26 *For if we sin wilfully after having received the knowledge of the truth, there is now left no sacrifice for sins,

Hebrews 6:4.
If we sin wilfully. He speaks of the sin of wilful apostacy from the known truth; after which, as we cannot be baptized again, we cannot expect to have that abundant remission of sins, which Christ purchased by his death, applied to our souls in that ample manner as it is in baptism; but we have rather all manner of reason to look for a dreadful judgment; the more, because apostates from the know truth seldom or never have the grace to return to it. (Challoner)
Hebrews 10:27 But a certain dreadful expectation of judgment and the rage of a fire, which shall consume the adversaries.

Hebrews 10:28 A man making void the law of Moses, dieth without any mercy under *two or three witnesses:

Deuteronomy 17:6.; Matthew 18:16.; John 8:17.; 2 Corinthians 13:1.
\f + \fr 10:28-29\ft A man making void, etc. He brings this comparison from the manner that transgressors were dealt with under the law of Moses, to shew how much greater punishments Christians deserve when they are ungrateful to Christ after much greater benefits, when they may be said to have trodden under foot the Son of God by despising him, who was the author of their salvation, by shedding his blood upon the cross. (Witham) --- What is here said of the crime of apostacy, may in some measure be applied to every deadly sin committed after baptism or the sacrament of penance; for a Christian by returning to sin, treads under foot the Son of God, despises the adorable blood by which he was sanctified, and offers a henious[heinous?] affront to the spirit of grace. Apostacy, though enormous, like all other sins can be forgiven by true repentance; but the apostle declares, there is no victim for the guilt of a person who perseveres and dies in apostacy.
Hebrews 10:29 How much more, do you think he deserveth worse punishments, who hath trodden underfoot the Son of God, and hath esteemed the blood of the testament unclean, with which he was sanctified, and hath offered an outrage to the Spirit of grace?

Hebrews 10:30 For we know him who hath said: *Vengeance is mine, and I will repay. And again: The Lord shall judge his people.

Deuteronomy 32:35.; Romans 12:19.
Hebrews 10:31 It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

Man is mortal, and therefore cannot extend his vengeance beyond death; God is immortal, and, as he lives eternally, can punish eternally; and he who during life despises a God who died for him, will at death experience the rigour of a God always living to punish him.
Hebrews 10:32 But call to mind the former days, wherein, being illuminated, you sustained a great conflict of afflictions,

But call to mind the former days, etc. After having laid before them the severity of God's judgments, he comforts them with the hopes they may have of their eternal salvation, from what they had already suffered soon after they received the light of the gospel, and were illuminated by baptism. (Witham)
Hebrews 10:33 And on the one part indeed, by reproaches and tribulations made a spectacle: and on the other, made companions of them that were so treated.

Hebrews 10:34 For you also had compassion on those who were in chains, and received with joy the plundering of your goods, knowing that you have a better and permanent substance.

Hebrews 10:35 Do not therefore lose your confidence, which hath a great reward.

Hebrews 10:36 For patience is necessary for you: that doing the will of God, you may receive the promise.

He encourages them to patience in the short time of this mortal life. (Witham)
Hebrews 10:37 For yet a very little while, and he that is to come will come, and will not delay.

Yet a very little while, and the judge that is to come, and who is to judge every one, will come. (Witham) --- O erchomenos, he who is coming. It is observed by commentators, that this is the appellation given by the Jews to the Messias. See Matthew 11:3.; Matthew 21:9.
Hebrews 10:38 *But my just man liveth by faith: but if he withdraw himself, he shall not please my soul.

Habacuc 2:4.; Romans 1:17.; Galatians 3:11.
But my { Ver. 38. Justus meus, dikaios; in some Greek manuscripts, mou, as also in the Septuagint Habacuc 2:4.|} just man, he that liveth according to the doctrine I have taught, liveth by faith, which is the groundwork and foundation of a good life. --- But if he withdraw himself, and fall from this faith of Christ, he shall not please my soul. It is a Hebrew way of speaking, and as it were in the person of God. (Witham) --- Luther and Calvin teach that faith alone is sufficient for justification, and they define this faith to be an assured confidence that their sins are forgiven them wholly by Christ's passion. No text, however, in Scripture teaches that a man is justified by faith only. In Romans, (ii.) Luther makes St. Paul say that a man is justified by faith only, without the works of the law: the authorized Protestant version has omitted the word only, foisted into the German translations. Solifidians [Those who pretend justification by faith alone] vainly cite this text, as its obvious meaning is, that neither the works of the written law, done by the Jew, nor the works of the law of nature, done by the Gentile, before either of them believe in Christ, can without faith in Christ justify any one. Saving faith is a faith working through charity in Jesus Christ, a faith which includes hope, love, repentance, and the use of the sacraments. Hence St. James (James 2.) declares, that a man may have faith but not works, but that faith without works will not save him. St. Paul teaches the same, 1 Corinthians 13:2. "If I should have all faith, so as to move mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing;" where we should observe the word all faith.
Hebrews 10:39 But we are not the children of withdrawing unto perdition, but of faith to the salvation of the soul.

But we are not the children of withdrawing;{ Ver. 39. Non sumus substractionis filii, ouk esmen upostoles, subaudi uioi.|} that is we are not such as withdraw ourselves in this manner from the true faith to perdition, but remain constant in the faith and law of Christ. (Witham)
Hebrews 11:0 What faith is: its wonderful fruits and efficacy, demonstrated in the fathers.

Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things to be hoped for, the evidence of things that appear not.

All this chapter is a commendation and recommendation of faith, which is the substance{ Ver. 1. Substantia, upostasis, subsistentia.|} of things hoped for, giving as it were a substance in our minds to such things as we are in hopes and in expectation of hereafter, and making them present to us before they come to pass. --- It is also a sure conviction{ Ver. 1. Argumentum, elegchos. Convictio, ostensio. It does not seem well translated evidence, as by the Protestants and Mr. N. because faith is an obscure knowledge, though it be the most certain, because of the infallible authority of God, who has revealed those obscure mysteries.|} of things that appear not. For when God has revealed things, and we believe them upon the divine and infallible authority of the revealer, we have a greater certainty of them than any demonstration can afford us. By this virtue of faith, they of old, our forefathers, obtained{ Ver. 1. Emarturethesan, testimonium consecuti sunt. This expression, which is repeated ver. 4, 5, and 39, signifies an approbation or commendation.|} a testimony from God that their actions were pleasing to him. (Witham) --- Faith is the basis, the foundation supporting our hope; for unless there be faith, there cannot possibly be any hope. (Menochius)
Hebrews 11:2 For by this the ancients obtained a testimony.

Hebrews 11:3 *By faith we understand that the world was framed by the word of God; that from invisible things visible things might be made.

Genesis 1:4.
The faith so highly commended here is not that special faith of sectarists, by means of which persons of various and contradictory tenets pretend to assure themselves that their sins in particular are pardoned for Christ's sake, but a firm and lively belief of all that God has revealed or promised.
Hebrews 11:4 *By faith Abel offered to God a sacrifice exceeding that of Cain, *by which he obtained a testimony that he was just, God giving testimony to his gifts; and by it he being dead, yet speaketh.

Genesis 4:4.; Matthew 23:35.
A sacrifice.{ Ver. 4. Plurimam hostiam, pleiona thusian, majorem.|} Literally, a greater sacrifice than his brother Cain, offering to God the best and fattest cattle he had, by which he obtained a testimony (a mark of God's approbation) that he was just, and his piety pleasing to God. St. Jerome, from a tradition among the Hebrews, thinks that this mark was, that fire descended from heaven upon Abel's sacrifice and not upon that of Cain. --- And by it, he being dead, yet speaketh. By it, in construction, may be either referred to his faith or to his sacrifice. Some expound it, that by reason of his faith, or of his sacrifice, his memory still lives after his death, and he is commended by all good men. Others think that the apostle alludes to the words which God spoke to Cain, (Genesis 4:10) "The voice of thy brother's blood crieth to me from the earth," and that in this manner he is said to have spoken after his death. (Witham) --- Men of all religions, whether true or false, have offered sacrifices, as being the supreme act of religion; and therefore we may conclude, that what is so general and universal, must have come from the instinct and light of our nature, and be a kind of first principle implanted in us by God himself.
Hebrews 11:5 *By faith Henoch was translated, that he should not see death; and he was not found, because God had translated him: for before his translation he had testimony that he pleased God.

Genesis 5:24.; Ecclesiasticus 44:16.
Henoch[Enoch] was translated, so as not to die nor see death. In Ecclesiasticus 44. he is said to be translated into paradise. By these words, that he should not see death, it is the general exposition of the ancient interpreters, that he is not dead; but in what place, or in what manner God preserveth him, we know not. See St. Augustine, lib. de pec. orig.[on Original Sin] ch. XXIII.; St. Chrysostom; etc. (Witham)
Hebrews 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please God. For he that cometh to God, must believe that he is, and is a rewarder to them that seek him.

He proves the Henoch[Enoch] was translated by faith, or on account of faith, thus: Henoch was translated because he pleased God; now he could not please God but by faith; therefore by faith he was translated. (Menochius)
Hebrews 11:7 *By faith Noe having received an answer concerning those things which as yet were not seen, moved with fear, framed the ark for the saving of his family, whereby he condemned the world: and was instituted heir of the justice which is by faith.

Gen. 6:14.; Eccli. 44:17.
Having received an answer,....moved with fear;{ Ver. 7. Metuens, eulabetheis, which signifieth a fear with reverence. See Hebrews 5:7.|} that is with a religious fear: by the Greek, prepared the ark, by which he condemned the rest of the incredulous world, who would not take warning nor believe. (Witham) --- Noe[Noah] warned impenitent sinners of impending judgments; but unbelievers and scoffers, they only laughed at Noe's credulity: thus worldlings, who laugh at the simplicity of the few, who work out their salvation with fear and trembling, will one day see their error, when the former shall perish in their infidelity, and the latter shall triumph in the midst of a falling world.
Hebrews 11:8 *By faith he that is called Abraham, obeyed, to go out into a place which he was to receive for an inheritance: and he went out not knowing whither he went.

Genesis. 12:1.
By faith he that is called Abraham, etc. He commends his faith, who believing God, left his own country, lived in Chanaan[Canaan] as in a strange country, waiting for the promise and for a city, whose builder and maker is God; that is for an habitation in the kingdom of heaven. (Witham)
Hebrews 11:9 By faith he dwelt in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in cottages, with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise.

Hebrews 11:10 For he looked for a city that hath foundations: whose builder and maker is God.

The Patriarchs, who lived to a great age, dwelt not in fixed dwellings, but in moveable tents, as pilgrims; whereas their descendants, the period of whose existence is greatly curtailed, pass their time in building and planning as if they were never to die. This earth is a place of our exile, heaven is our true country: let us then live here as strangers and pilgrims, looking forward with anxious desires for our true country, the land of the living, in the bosom of our God.
Hebrews 11:11 *By faith also Sara herself, being barren, received strength to conceive seed, even past the time of age: because she believed that he was faithful who had promised.

Genesis 17:19.
By faith also Sara, etc. Though Sara[Sarah] seemed at first incredulous, yet she presently believed, and conceived Isaac when she was past the age of having children. (Witham)
Hebrews 11:12 For which cause there sprung, even from one (and him as dead) as the stars of heaven in multitude, and as the sand which is by the sea-shore, innumerable.

Him as dead:{ Ver. 12. Et hoc emortuo: the ordinary Greek copies have, kai tauta nenek romenou; that is secundum haec, or in this respect dead, being incapable of having children by Sara.|} dead in a manner in that respect, and incapable of having children by Sara[Sarah]. (Witham)
Hebrews 11:13 All these died according to faith, not having received the promises, but beholding them afar off, and saluting them, and confessing, that they are pilgrims and strangers on the earth.

All these died in the faith of God's promises; that is, of their posterity, being to be introduced into the promised land of Chanaan[Canaan], but chiefly into the happy country of heaven. For had they only aspired and wished for the country of Chaldea, out of which Abraham came, they had time enough to have returned thither. (Witham) --- A metaphor taken from sailors, who, after a long and dangerous voyage, no sooner descry their native country, but they hail it with transports of joy: thus in Virgil: Italiam, Italiam, primus conclamat Achates. Thus the Patriarchs, when beholding at a distance, and through faith, their heavenly country, hailed it with joyous and repeated accents, eagerly desiring to reach the envied port.
Hebrews 11:14 For they that say these things, do signify that they seek a country.

Hebrews 11:15 And truly if they had been mindful of that from whence they came out, they had doubtless time to return:

Hebrews 11:16 But now they desire a better, that is to say, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city.

Hebrews 11:17 *By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered Isaac; and he who had received the promises, offered up his only begotten son:

Genesis 22:1.; Ecclesiasticus 44:21.
By faith Abraham....offered up Isaac; that is was ready and willing to do it, when Isaac was his only son, by whom God had promised to give him a numberless progeny, but by faith he considered that God, who had miraculously given him a son, could if he pleased raise him to life again. (Witham)
Hebrews 11:18 To whom it was said: *That in Isaac shall seed be called to thee:

Genesis 21:12.; Romans 9:7.
Hebrews 11:19 Accounting that God is able to raise up even from the dead: from whence also he received him for a parable.

Whence also he received him for a parable.{ Ver. 19. Eum in parabolam accepit, en parabole, in typo, in similitudine. St. Chrysostom says, toutestin en upodeigmati.|} Some understand by this, that both Abraham and his son became hereby an example of a perfect obedience to God, which all nations should admire. St. Chrysostom, says, that Abraham received again his son safe in a figure, by being ordered to sacrifice for him a ram, which was a figure of Isaac. Others, that Abraham received again his son Isaac, who was a figure of Christ sacrificed on the cross, and risen again. Christ carried the cross on which he was to suffer, as Isaac carried the wood up to the mountain where he was to have been offered. (Witham) --- Parable; that is, as a figure of Christ slain and coming to life again. (Challoner)
Hebrews 11:20 *By faith also Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau concerning things to come.

Genesis 27:27.; Genesis 27:39.
Hebrews 11:21 *By faith Jacob, when dying, blessed each of the sons of Joseph: **and worshipped the top of his staff.

Genesis 48:15.; Genesis 47:31.
Jacob....worshipping the top{ Ver. 21. Adoravit fastigium virgae ejus, prosekunesen epi to akron tes rabdon autou epi does not change the signification. See St. Chrysostom and Estius.|} of Joseph's rod, or staff of command, or of his sceptre. See Genesis xlvii. Jacob, by bowing to Joseph and his sceptre, acknowledged and reverenced the power of Joseph, whom Pharao called the saviour of the world: and it is probable that Jacob, by the spirit of prophecy, knew Joseph to be a figure of Christ, and his power to be a figure of the spiritual power of the Messias. (Witham) --- The apostle here follows the ancient Greek Bible of the seventy interpreters[the Septuagint], (which translates in this manner, Genesis 47:31.) and alleges this fact of Jacob, in paying a relative honour and veneration to the top of the rod or sceptre of Joseph, as to a figure of Christ's sceptre and kingdom, as an instance and argument of his faith. But some translators, who are no friends to this relative honour, have corrupted the text, by translating it, he worshipped, leaning upon the top of his staff; as if this circumstance of leaning upon his staff were any argument of Jacob's faith, or worthy the being thus particularly taken notice of by the Holy Ghost: (Challoner) Besides, if Jacob's staff, and not Joseph's rod or sceptre, had been spoken of, the Greek would have been autou, suae, not autou, ejus: but this relative honour or worship is not pleasing to them.
Hebrews 11:22 *By faith Joseph, when dying, made mention of the going out of the children of Israel: and gave commandment concerning his bones.

Genesis 50:23.
Concerning his bones. That is, that when the Israelites should leave Egypt, they should take with them his bones, to be buried in Chanaan [Canaan] with his ancestors. This shews he had faith on God's promises, that he would give the Israelites the land of Chanaan. (Witham)
Hebrews 11:23 *By faith Moses when he was born, was hid three months by his parents, because they saw he was a comely infant, **and they feared not the king's edict.

Exodus 2:2.; Exodus 1:17.
By faith Moses....was hid three months, etc. It is not improbable what Josephus relates, (lib. 2:Jewish Antiquities, Hebrews 5) that the parents of Moses, by revelation from God, or by some extraordinary marks, were persuaded that he should deliver the Israelites from their slavery in Egypt, and conduct them into the land of promise. (Witham)
Hebrews 11:24 *By faith Moses, when he was grown up, denied himself to be the son of Pharao's daughter,

Exodus 2:11.
\f + \fr 11:24-26\ft By faith Moses....chose rather to be afflicted with the people of God, than to be honoured as the son of Pharao's daughter, and to enjoy short sinful pleasures in the court of the king. --- Esteeming the reproach of Christ: by which seems to be signified, that Moses, to whom Christ and his sufferings were revealed, chose rather to endure such reproaches and contradictions from his brethren, the Israelites, as Christ was to suffer from the Jews, than to have all the short pleasures of what is called a happy life. See St. Chrysostom, hom. xxvi. --- For he looked unto the reward; not any temporal reward or advantage in this life, but a reward from God in heaven, or rather where God himself would be his reward. (Witham)
Hebrews 11:25 Choosing rather to be afflicted with the people of God, than to have the pleasure of sin for a time;

Hebrews 11:26 Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasure of the Egyptians: for he looked to the reward.

Hebrews 11:27 By faith he left Egypt, not fearing the fierceness of the king: for he endured as seeing him that is invisible.

He left Egypt. Some understand this, when he fled to Madian, after he killed the Egyptian; but it was rather fear than faith which made him flee at that time. We may rather expound it of his going away with all the people, when by faith he trusted that God would deliver him and the people from the known fierceness of king Pharao, as it also happened. --- For he endured, as seeing him that is invisible.{ Ver. 27. Invisibilem enim tanquam videns sustinuit: ekarterese, that is sustinuit non Deum, sed animositatem regis.|} That is, seeing by the eyes of faith the invisible God to be his protector, he endured and overcame all difficulties with courage and constancy. (Witham)
Hebrews 11:28 *By faith he celebrated the pasch, and the shedding of the blood: that he, who destroyed the first born, might not touch them.

Exodus 12:21.
Hebrews 11:29 *By faith they passed through the Red Sea, as by dry land: which the Egyptians attempting, were swallowed up.

Exodus 14:22.
Hebrews 11:30 *By faith the walls of Jericho fell down, by the going round them seven days.

Josue 6:20.
The following examples are clear enough, if we look into the history and particular actions of those here named. It was a faith in God's mercies and promises that gave them courage, resolution, and perseverance amidst all dangers and difficulties, against all afflictions and persecutions, that made them despise the short happiness of this mortal life, in hopes of an immortal happiness hereafter. Yet they who are so much commended and approved for their faith, received not the great promise of entering into the kingdom of heaven; and they who lived and died well, were indeed in a place of rest, but their souls were not admitted to the beatifical vision, to see and enjoy God in heaven, till our blessed Saviour [Jesus Christ], at his glorious ascension, entered first, and opened as it were heaven's gates for others to enter. In this God provided something better for us, who, after his coming, if we die without sin, and without any temporal punishments due to sin, our souls are presently happy with God in heaven. (Witham)
Hebrews 11:31 *By faith Rahab the harlot perished not with the unbelievers, receiving the spies with peace.

Josue 2:3.; James 2:25.
Hebrews 11:32 And what shall I yet say? For the time would fail me to tell of Gedeon, of Barac, of Samson, of Jephthe, of David, of Samuel, and of the prophets:

Hebrews 11:33 Who by faith subdued kingdoms, wrought justice, obtained the promises, stopped the mouths of lions,

Hebrews 11:34 Quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness regained strength, became valiant in war, put to flight the armies of foreigners:

Hebrews 11:35 Women received their dead raised to life again: but others were racked, not accepting deliverance, that they might find a better resurrection.

Hebrews 11:36 And others had trial of mockeries and stripes, moreover also of bands and prisons:

Hebrews 11:37 They were stoned, they were cut asunder, they were tempted, they were put to death by the sword, they wandered about in sheep skins, in goat skins, being in want, distressed, afflicted:

Melon signifies a sheep; melote signifies a sheep skin, with the wool on it. This, or a goat skin, was the usual covering of poor people, and as such was adopted by the ancient prophets, mortified to all the luxuries of life. Thus Elias[Elijah] is called vir pillosus, a hairy man, not for his beard or hair, but for his shaggy or hairy covering.
Hebrews 11:38 Of whom the world was not worthy: wandering in deserts, in mountains, and in dens, and in caves of the earth.

Hebrews 11:39 And all these being approved by the testimony of faith, received not the promise,

Hebrews 11:40 God providing something better for us, that they should not be perfected without us.

Hebrews 12:0 Exhortation to constancy under their crosses. The danger of abusing the grace of the new testament.

Hebrews 12:1 And therefore we also having so great a cloud of witnesses over us, *laying aside every weight, and the sin that surroundeth us, let us run by patience to the fight proposed to us:

Romans 6:4.; Ephesians 4:22.; Colossians 3:8.; 1 Peter 2:1.; 1 Peter 4:2.
Laying aside every weight;{ Ver. 1. Omne pondus, panta ogkon, omnem sarcinam.|} that is all that may hinder us when we run in the way of virtue.--- To the fight proposed to us. In the Greek it is more clear: let us run the proposed race. He compares the condition of Christians to those who run a race, who fight or strive for a prize in the Olympic games, who strip themselves, and make themselves as light as possible, the better to run and fight. (Witham) --- This Christian's life is both a race and a combat. In baptism we enter the lists; therefore we must fight in running to Jesus Christ, for he is the term, the goal, and the prize. To run well, we must be as light and disengaged as possible; and the same if we hope to combat with success. We should look up to the battles fought by our captain, Jesus Christ, and contemplate the glory he now enjoys on that account; for this he means to share with us, if we imitate his virtues: let us then rejoice to suffer with our Captain (archegon) here, and we shall be glorified with him hereafter.
Hebrews 12:2 Looking on Jesus the author and finisher of faith, who having joy proposed to him, underwent the cross, despising the shame, and sitteth on the right hand of the throne of God.

Who having joy{ Ver. 2. Curramus ad propositum nobis certamen, trechomen ton prokeimenon emin agona, without pros, ad. Certamen is not only pugnando, but contendendo cursu, etc.|} proposed to him, underwent the cross. The sense seems to be, who by reason of the joy he had to perform the will of his eternal Father, for which he knew he should be exalted above all creatures, underwent willingly the ignominy and death of the cross. (Witham)
Hebrews 12:3 For reflect upon him who endured such opposition from sinners against himself: that you be not wearied, fainting in your minds,

Hebrews 12:4 For you have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin:

You have not yet resisted unto blood. Though you have met with some persecutions, you have not yet shed your blood for his sake who laid down his life, and shed every drop of his blood for you. (Witham)
Hebrews 12:5 And you have forgotten the consolation which speaketh to you, as to children, saying: *My son, neglect not the discipline of the Lord: neither be thou wearied whilst thou art rebuked by him.

Proverbs 3:11.; Apocalypse 3:19.
You have forgotten the consolation, etc. He puts them in mind, that it ought to be a subject of great comfort to them, that God calls them his children, his sons, and treats them as his true and legitimate children, when he admonished them to live under discipline and obedience to him, when, to correct their disobedient and sinful ways, he sends the afflictions and persecutions in this world, which they ought to look upon as marks of his fatherly tenderness; for this is what a prudent kind father does to his legitimate children, of whom he takes the greatest care: and not to use these corrections, is to neglect them, as if they were { Ver. 5. Ergo adulteri, et non filii, ara nothoi este, kai ouch uioi, adulterini, non germani filii.|}illegitimate children. We reverence the father of our flesh, (ver. 10.) our parents in this world, when they instruct and correct us, how much more ought we to obey the Father and Creator of spirits, (that is, of our souls) that being truly sanctified by him, we may live and obtain life everlasting. (Witham)
Hebrews 12:6 For whom the Lord loveth he chastiseth: and he scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.

Hebrews 12:7 Persevere in discipline. God offereth himself to you as to sons: for what son is there, whom the father doth not correct?

Hebrews 12:8 But if you be without discipline, whereof all are made partakers: then are you bastards, and not sons.

In these last four verses we may observe as many subjects of consolation under afflictions. God, our Father, is the author of them; the chastisement he inflicts is the proof of his love; it is the sign or mark of our divine adoption; it is a necessary condition of our being adopted.
Hebrews 12:9 Moreover we have had indeed for instructors, the fathers of our flesh, and we reverenced them: shall we not much more obey the Father of spirits and live?

Hebrews 12:10 And they indeed for a few days instructed us according to their own will: but he, for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness.

Hebrews 12:11 Now all discipline for the present indeed seemeth to bring not joy, but sorrow: but afterwards it will yield to them that are exercised by it, the most peaceable fruit of justice.

It is true all discipline, all corrections, and sufferings in this present life, are disagreeable to our nature, because they bring not joy, but trouble and grief with them; yet afterwards, they who have been exercised with them, will reap the most peaceable fruit of justice, eternal peace and happiness in heaven. (Witham) --- We must not judge of sufferings by the smart they occasion, but by the fruits of peace, justice, and eternal glory they produce in such as submit to them with patience.
Hebrews 12:12 Wherefore lift up the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees,

\f + \fr 12:12-14\ft Wherefore lift up the{ Ver. 12-14. Remissas manus, pareimenas, which signifies hands hanging down in a lazy posture.|} hands, etc. Be fervent in piety, walk firmly in the way of virtue, make straight{ Ver. 12-14. Gressus rectos facite, trochios orthas poiesate, which is to advance in a straight line, not turning aside, or tottering.|} steps, without declining to one side or the other, without halting or going astray, and strive to be healed from your sins by his grace. --- Follow and seek peace, as much as lies in you, with all men, and { Ver. 12-14. Sanctimoniam, agiasmon.|}purity of life, without which no man shall see and enjoy God. (Witham)
Hebrews 12:13 And make straight steps with your feet: that no one halting may go astray, but rather be healed.

Hebrews 12:14 *Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see God:

Romans 12:18.
Hebrews 12:15 Looking diligently, lest any man be wanting to the grace of God: lest any root of bitterness springing up do hinder, and by it many be defiled.

Be wanting to the grace of God, by resisting and abusing his favours, or by falling from the grace of God received. --- Lest any root of bitterness, etc. He means scandalous wicked persons, by whom others are infected, defiled, and corrupted. (Witham)
Hebrews 12:16 Lest there be any fornicator, or profane person, *as Esau: who for one mess sold his first birth-right:

Genesis 25:33.
Or profane person, as Esau, who had so little regard for the blessing and inheritance of his father, that he sold his right of first-begotten for one mess of broth, and afterwards found no place for repentance, although with tears he had sought for it; that is, he could not make his father repent or change what he had once done, though he endeavoured with his tears and lamentable outcries. Or if any one will have repentance referred to Esau himself, still the Novatian heretics can have no advantage in favour of their error, when they deny that sinners can repent, because Esau's tears might only be for a temporal loss, not for God's sake, nor for the guilt of his sins, so that he wanted the dispositions of a true penitent and of a contrite heart. (Witham) --- Bebelos, profane, like Esau, who for a trifling meal could forfeit his right of primogeniture[first-begotten], and the honour of priesthood thereto attached. Oh, how many give up all right to a heavenly and eternal inheritance for even a mere trifling consideration! And how will they one day, with Esau, regret the same inflexibility on the part of God, their Father!
Hebrews 12:17 For know ye that *afterwards when he desired to inherit the blessing, he was rejected: for he found no place of repentance, although with tears he had sought it.

Genesis 27:38.
He found, etc. That is, he found no way to bring his father to repent, or change his mind, with relation to his having given the blessing to his younger brother, Jacob. (Challoner)
Hebrews 12:18 *For you are not come to a mountain that might be touched, and a burning fire, and a whirlwind, and darkness, and tempest,

Exodus 19:12.; Exodus 20:21.
For you are not come to a mountain,{ Ver. 18. Ad tractabilem montem, pselaphomeno orei. palpabilem.|} etc. That is, to a mountain on earth that can be touched; to wit, to Mount Sinai, where the law was given to Moses, where the mountain seemed all on fire, with dreadful thunder and lightning, whirlwinds, darkness, tempests, sounding of trumpets, voices, etc. which they who heard excused themselves, begging that Moses only, and not God, might speak to them, for they could not without exceeding consternation think of what was then said; that if any man, or even beast, should touch the mountain, he should be stoned to death. (Exodus 19:15.) Nay Moses himself, trembling, was frightened. This particular is nowhere mentioned in the Scripture, but the apostle might know it by revelation, or by some tradition among the Jews. (Witham)
Hebrews 12:19 And the sound of a trumpet, and the voice of words, which they that heard excused themselves, that the word might not be spoken to them.

Hebrews 12:20 For they did not endure that which was said: *And if a beast shall touch the mountain, it shall be stoned.

Exodus 19:13.
Hebrews 12:21 And so terrible was that which was seen, Moses said: I am frightened, and tremble.

Hebrews 12:22 But you are come to Mount Sion, and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to the company of many thousands of Angels,

But you are come to Mount Sion, where not a law of fear, like that of Moses, but a new law of love and mercy hath been given you, preached by our Saviour himself, and by his apostles, testified by the coming of the Holy Ghost, and by the effusion of God's spirit upon the believers. Here you are called to the city of the living God, (to the Christian Church on earth) and even to the celestial Jerusalem, there to be for ever happy in the company of many millions of Angels; to the church of the first-born, who are written in heaven, (ver. 23.) to be happy with those who have been chosen by a special mercy of God, and blessed with an endless happiness; to be there in the presence of God, the judge of all men, with all the celestial spirits and souls of the just and perfect in the kingdom of God. Jesus Christ is the mediator of this new testament, the redeemer of mankind by his death on the cross, by the sprinkling and effusion of his blood, which speaketh better than that of Abel: the blood of Abel cried to heaven for vengeance, and the blood of Christ for mercy and pardon. (Witham)
Hebrews 12:23 And to the church of the first-born, who are written in heaven, and to God, the judge of all, and to the spirits of the just made perfect,

Hebrews 12:24 And to Jesus, the mediator of the new testament, and to the sprinkling of blood, which speaketh better than that of Abel.

Hebrews 12:25 See that you refuse not him who speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused him that spoke upon earth: much less we, who turn away from him that speaketh to us from heaven.

Refuse not then to hearken to him; for if the Jews escaped not God's severe judgments, for being deaf to his admonitions, given by an Angel to Moses on Mount Sinai, and by him to the people, much less shall we escape, if we turn away our minds, and harden our hearts against the instructions of our Redeemer, who came from heaven to speak to us, and teach us the way to our eternal salvation. (Witham)
Hebrews 12:26 Whose voice then moved the earth: but now he promiseth, saying: *Yet once: and I will move not only the earth, but heaven also.

Aggeus 2:7.
Whose voice then moved the earth, by such signs and prodigies on Mount Sinai: but now he promiseth, saying by the prophet Aggeus[Haggai]: yet once; and I will move not only the earth, but heaven also. These words of the prophet are commonly understood of Christ's first coming at his incarnation, when at his birth a star appeared, Angels were sent, and sung his praises, when the heavens opened at his baptism, when the earth trembled at his resurrection, when the sun and moon were darkened at his death, etc. Yet others expound these words of Christ's coming to redeem mankind, so as to comprehend all the time of the law of grace, and even his second coming to judge all men, at the end of the world, of which may particularly be understood those words, (ver. 27.) of the translation of the moveable things; that is, of the elements, and of the heavens changed to a more perfect state. See here St. Chrysostom; St. Augustine, lib. 18. de civ. Dei. ch. XXXV. p. 517. Nov. Editionis. (Witham)
Hebrews 12:27 And in that he saith: Yet once: he signifieth the translation of the moveable things, as of the things that are made, that those things may remain which are immoveable.

Some refer these words to the tabernacle, to the ark, the altar, and other parts of the Jewish religion; which, as figures were to be altered and to be replaced by the more lasting and more perfect dispensation of the gospel. (Estius)
Hebrews 12:28 Wherefore receiving an immoveable kingdom, we have grace: whereby let us serve, pleasing God with fear and reverence.

Hebrews 12:29 *For our God is a consuming fire.

Deuteronomy 4:24.
Hebrews 13:0 Divers admonitions and exhortations.

Hebrews 13:1 Let fraternal charity abide in you.

Hebrews 13:2 *And hospitality do not forget, for by this some, **being not aware of it, have entertained Angels.

Romans 12:13.; 1 Peter 4:9. --- ** Genesis 18:3.; Genesis 19:2.
And hospitality do not forget,...some being not aware{ Ver. 2. Per hanc enim latuerunt quidam Angelis hospitio receptis, dia tautes gar elathon tines xenisantes Aggelous, that is hospitio recipiendo Angelos. The Latin has exactly followed the Greek.|} of it, have entertained Angels. They imagined they received men, when they were Angels. The Latin interpreter followed exactly the Greek, though the expression be unusual in both languages. It is meant of Abraham, (Genesis 18:2.) and of Lot, Genesis 19:1. (Witham)
Hebrews 13:3 Remember them that are in bands, as if you were bound with them: and them that are afflicted, as being yourselves also in the body.

As being yourselves also in the body. That is, liable to troubles and afflictions as long as you are in a mortal body. (Witham)
Hebrews 13:4 Marriage honourable in all, and the bed undefiled. For God will judge fornicators and adulterers.

Marriage honourable in all.{ Ver. 4. Honorabile connubium in omnibus, timios o gamos en posi.|} It is doubtful both in the Latin and Greek, whether the sense be, marriage is honourable, or let it be accounted honourable, as it rather seems to be by the rest of the text. Again it may be doubted whether the sense be honourable in all persons, or in all things, and in all respects; as it seems to be the obvious signification that persons do nothing to dishonour their state, as they do who violate by adulteries the fidelity they owe to one another, who regard not the sanctity of this sacrament, who love not each other, who take not care of the education of their children. It does not follow from hence, that all persons without any exception, even those who have already made a vow to God to lead a single life, may lawfully marry. Such persons, by pretending to marry, incur their damnation. See 1 Timothy 5:12. (Witham) --- Or, let marriage be honourable in all. That is, in all things belonging to the marriage state. This is a warning to married people, not to abuse the sanctity of their state, by any liberties or irregularities contrary thereunto. Now it does not follow from this text that all persons are obliged to marry, even if the word omnibus were rendered, in all persons, instead of in all things: for if it was a precept, St. Paul himself would have transgressed it, as he never married. Moreover those who have already made a vow to God to lead a single life, should they attempt to marry, would incur their own damnation. (Challoner) --- As marriage is a great sacrament, (Ephesians v.) married persons should be careful to honour and respect it, by chaste and prudent behaviour; (see 1 Peter 3:and 1 Thessalonians iv.) but it too often happens that by criminal incontinence they change a great sacrament into a great sacrilege.
Hebrews 13:5 Let your manners be without covetousness, contented with such things as you have: for he hath said: *I will not leave thee, neither will I forsake thee.

Josue 2:5.
I will not leave thee, neither will I forsake thee. It is an exhortation to covetous persons not to be too solicitous, but to trust in Providence. (Witham)
Hebrews 13:6 So that we may confidently say: *The Lord is my helper: I will not fear what man shall do unto me.

Psalm 117:6.
Hebrews 13:7 Remember your prelates, who have spoken to you the word of God: reflecting on the end of their conversation, imitate their faith.

Remember your prelates, etc. who have been placed over you to be your guides and directors in what belongs to the service of God; he seems to mean the two Sts. James, the apostles, who perhaps had already suffered martyrdom for the gospel. (Witham)
Hebrews 13:8 Jesus Christ yesterday, and to-day; and the same for ever.

Yesterday, and to-day, and the same for ever. That is, Christ is the same merciful and powerful advocate and protector, in regard of all that serve him faithfully to the end of the world. (Witham)
Hebrews 13:9 Be not led away with various and strange doctrines. For it is best to establish the heart with grace, not with meats: which have not profited those that walk in them.

With various and strange doctrines. Such as the disciples of Simon Magus had begun to teach; nor with the false doctrine of those among you, who would make you subject to the ceremonies and sacrifices of the former law, which never of themselves profit those who walk in them, so as to give true sanctification, and which now are no longer obligatory. (Witham) --- The grace of Jesus Christ is the true support of our hearts, and this grace is conveyed to us by means of the sacraments, especially the holy Eucharist. Hence St. Ignatius of Antioch addresses the Ephesians as follows: "Brethren, stand fast in the faith of Jesus Christ; in his passion and resurrection; breaking that one bread, which is the medicine of immortality, the antidote against death, and the means of living in God by Christ Jesus; the medicament that expels all evil."
Hebrews 13:10 We have an altar, whereof they have no power to eat who serve the tabernacle.

We, Christians, have at present an altar,{ Ver. 10. Habemus altare, thusiasterion, sacrificatorium: thusiasterion is not used for the oblation itself.|} and consequently a sacrifice, whereof they have no power to eat, who serve the tabernacle, confiding in the law and in Moses, not in Christ and the gospel. He does not say, we had an altar. (Witham) --- St. Paul has often mentioned the high priest and victim; here he tells us we have an altar, and of course a sacrifice. Let us then go out of ourselves to offer to God by, with, and in Jesus Christ, this his beloved Son, in the holy Eucharist, for this is a victim of praise worthy of God, and let us not forget to offer ourselves to our eternal Father daily, in union with our great high priest and victim, Jesus Christ; 1st, on the cross; 2ndly, in the Eucharist; and 3rdly, in heaven, the immaculate Lamb slain as it were from the beginning before the throne of God.
Hebrews 13:11 *For the bodies of those beasts, whose blood is brought into the sanctuary for sin by the high priest, are burned without the camp.

Leviticus 16:27.
This is commonly interpreted of the sacrifice of the Eucharist, by which is continued (though in a different manner) Christ's sacrifice on the cross, of which he speaks in the following words, telling them that the bodies of those beasts, with the blood of which the sanctuary was sprinkled on the feast of expiation. See (Leviticus 16:29.; Leviticus 23:27.; Numbers 29:8.) were burnt without the camp, not eaten as the other victims. Wherefore Jesus, when he fulfilled this figure, and offered himself on the cross, a sacrifice of expiation for the sins of all mankind, and to obtain for them true sanctification, was pleased to suffer out of the gate of Jerusalem. (Witham)
Hebrews 13:12 Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered without the gate.

Hebrews 13:13 Let us go forth, therefore, to him without the camp, bearing his reproach.

Let us go forth, therefore, to him without the camp. It is an exhortation to them to be willing to suffer with Christ reproaches, persecutions, and death itself, if they desire to partake of the benefit of Christ's redemption. (Witham) --- Bearing his reproach. That is, bearing his cross. It is an exhortation to them to be willing to suffer, with Christ, reproaches, persecutions, and even death, if they desire to partake of the benefit of his suffering for man's redemption. (Challoner)
Hebrews 13:14 [*?]For we have not here a permanent city, but we seek one to come.

Micheas 2:10.
\f + \fr 13:14-15\ft We have not a permanent city in this world, but are like pilgrims or banished men, seeking for our happy country of heaven; but in the mean time must offer to God a sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving, which is done chiefly in the holy sacrifice of the Eucharist, also by confessing his name, and praying to him with our lips and hearts; and by a kind of sacrifice of charity, by doing good to every one, and of communication to others; literally, of communion, or union with our neighbours. (Witham) --- When we read in the psalms, and in the old Scripture, of a sacrifice of praise, we may look upon it as a prophecy of the Christian Eucharist or sacrifice of praise, of which St. Augustine says: "What is a more holy sacrifice of praise, than that which consisteth in thanksgiving, which the faithful offer now in the sacrifice of the Church." (lib. 1. contra Advers. leg. and proph. ch. XVIII.) And again in ch. XX., "The Church from the time of the apostles, by an uninterrupted succession of prelates, offers to God in the body of Christ the sacrifice of praise."
Hebrews 13:15 By him, therefore, let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is the fruit of lips glorifying his name.

Hebrews 13:16 And do not forget to do good, and to impart: for by such sacrifices God's favour is obtained.

For by such sacrifices God's favour is obtained,{ Ver. 16. Promeretur Deus. This word is taken passively in several good Latin authors. See Grotius.|} and a recompense or a reward from him. (Witham) --- The Protestant version, God is well pleased: If God be well pleased and shew favour for them, then are they meritorious, and faith alone is not the sole cause of God's favour to man.
Hebrews 13:17 Obey your prelates, and be subject to them. For they watch, as being to render an account of your souls, that they may do this with joy, and not with grief: for this is not expedient for you.

\f + \fr 13:17-18\ft Obey your prelates, etc. Join the sacrifice of obedience to your bishops and pastors, whom God has placed over you, who must render an account even of your souls, that is whether they have discharged their duty towards you, and whether it be not by their neglect that you have remained in your sins. Follow their commands and instructions, with such a ready willingness, that you do not contristate them, but that you may be a subject of comfort and joy to them, in their heavy and dangerous employments. --- Fail not to pray for me, who am such a minister of God. (Witham)
Hebrews 13:18 Pray for us: for we trust that we have a good conscience, being willing to behave ourselves well in all things.

Hebrews 13:19 And I beseech you the more to do this, that I may be restored to you the sooner.

Hebrews 13:20 And may the God of peace, who brought again from the dead the great pastor of the sheep, our Lord Jesus Christ, in the blood of the everlasting testament,

\f + \fr 13:20-21\ft Who brought, or raised from the dead, the great pastor of the sheep, of all the faithful, Jesus Christ, in the blood of the everlasting testament: in the testament that is to last for ever, not for a time, like the former testament made to the people of Israel. These words, in the blood, may either be joined with brought from the dead his son, as man, by the merits of his blood, which he had shed on the cross, as it is said in Philippians 2:8. Or they may be joined with the great pastor, and then the sense will be, that God raised Jesus Christ, who, by his blood shed on the cross, became the great shepherd of all the faithful. Working in you by his grace every good work, etc. (Witham)
Hebrews 13:21 Make you perfect in every good work, that you may do his will: working in you that which is well pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ: to whom is glory for ever and ever. Amen.

Hebrews 13:22 And I beseech you, brethren, that you suffer the word of consolation. For I have written to you in few words.

Bear with the word of consolation, with what I have written to exhort and comfort you in a very few words, considering the importance of the subject, and the sublime mysteries. (Witham)
Hebrews 13:23 Know ye that our brother, Timothy, is set at liberty: with whom (if he come shortly) I will see you.

Our brother, Timothy, is set at liberty. From which we may conjecture that Timothy had been a prisoner, though it is not known where, nor on what occasion. (Witham)
Hebrews 13:24 Salute all your prelates, and all the saints. The brethren of Italy salute you.

Hebrews 13:25 Grace be with you all. Amen.