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The Nobleman of Capernaum.

The Nobleman of Capernaum.

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John iv. 46 — 50.

John iv. 46 — 50.

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Published by: GLENN DALE PEASE on May 06, 2013
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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THE OBLEMA OF CAPERAUM.REV. R. CECILJohn iv. 4G — 50.So Jes'is came asrain into Cana of Galilee, where he made the water wine.And there was a certain nobleman, whose son was sick at Capernaum.When he heard that Jesus was come out of Judea into Galilee, he wentunto him, and besought him that he would come down and heal his son;for he was at the point of death. Then said Jesus unto him, Except yesee si^ns and wonders, ye will not believe. The nobleman saith untohim, Sir, come down, ere my child die. Jesu ; saith unto him, Go thyway, thy son liveth. And the man believed the word that Jesus hadspoken unto him, and he went his way.This is a short, but instructive history. It seemsto need no explanation, being a simple narrative. Ishall, therefore, at once endeavour to lead your mindsto the four following observations : — It points out. to us,1. The indigence of human greatness.2. The exercise of faith.3. The all- sufficiency of Jesus, our God, to save.4. The progress of his teaching.I. Let us remark the indigence of human great-ness ; or the poverty of the rich and noble.This is a subject little thought of in the world, butthe Bible was written to set our minds right, and leadus to understand every thing that concerns us. If you speak of a rich man, a nobleman, indigence andpoverty are the last ideas connected with the words :yet the Scripture shows that they ought to be soassociated.A nobleman here comes to Jesus of azareth — himself so poor that he "had not where to lay his
196 SERMO XIX.head" — a nobleman comes to him in distress : he hada sick child ; and what relief can riches bring in sncha case? " They can employ physicians." And whatcan physicians do ? They frequently leave the house,and say, "We can do nothing I"Let the rich recollect that their riches can do no-thing for them in many of the common sorrows inlife, in pain and in sickness : they can give no com-fort to a dying man ; much less can they give ease toa guilty conscience: they cannot purchase peace.or let the poor envy the rich man in his posses-sions, when they consider how many things of vastimportance there are, which his riches cannot procurefor him ; and death stands waiting at his door, whenhe must leave every thing.The indigence of greatness and the poverty of riches, are discovered in those wants which belongto the rich and noble and great, and which can haveno relief but from Him who is infinitely rich.See a general at the head of his army, sweepingfrom the earth every thing that men call their own :the man seems to think everything at his will: — thepoint of a sword, the bullet of a distant enemy, or thecommon infirmities of nature overtake him : he fallsdown and expires !A man goes to the East Indies — amasses a largefortune — comes home: but his wealth cannot pur-chase peace, for such men have been known to de-stroy themselves, because they could not bear to live.Belshazzar calls his thousand lords to a festival,and determines that festivity shall rule the hour: buta hand-writing appears on the wall — Hnlshazzar !Thou art a poor man ! Thou hast no Saviour ! Thouhast no Almighty Friend !THE OBLEMA OF CAPERAUM. 197
Hezekiah may suppose that he has many years tolive: but, Hezekiah! "Set thy house in order, forthou shalt die and not live." Oh, happy for him.He knew who dwelt between the cherubim; and helifted up his eyes to him, and owned his dependenceon him. He prayed for help ; and found him, whois "a very present help in trouble."My dear hearers, if 3^011 are tempted to envy therich, consider what is the most, invaluable blessingwhich a rich man can have : and that is when he istaught of God his poverty ; and when, like Hezekiah,he knows to whom to lift his eyes, and how to dogood to his neighbour, and to become a commonblessing to society. " I counsel thee to buy of megold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; andwhite raiment, that thou mayest be clothed; that theshame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anointthine eyes with eye-salve that thou mayest see." If ever thou art clothed, if ever truly rich, if ever thineeyes are truly open, it is when thou art coming to" the unsearchable riches of Christ."II. I shall notice, that this obleman was amongthose blessed persons, who feel their poverty. Heacknowledged it : he came to Jesus, from Judea intoGalilee. Here was the exercise of faith.ot that great faith, indeed, of which you read inthe centurion : " Speak the word only, and my ser-vant shall be healed." But this man, according tohis strength, came to the true Helper, and besoughthim that he would come down. M Jesus said untohim, Except ye see signs and wonders ye will notbelieve. The nobleman saith unto him, Sir, comedown, ere my child die." Here was true faith.Faith made the report of the power, and grace, and17*198 SERMO XIX.friendship of Christ interesting to the man. He tra-velled fifteen miles — made his application, — spoke likea man, who. though distrusting onr Lord's ability tosave at a distance, yet seems to say, " He is able to

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