The Third Sunday In Lent The Gospel Luc. 11. v.14 Sunday Meditation: A Plaine Path-way To Heaven Thomas Hill 1634

GOSPEL St. Luke, 11. 14-28 
AT THAT TIME Jesus was casting out a devil, and the same was dumb. And when He had cast out the devil, the dumb spoke, and the multitudes were in admiration at it. But some of them said: He casteth out devils by Beelzebub, the prince of devils. And others, tempting, asked of Him a sign from heaven. But He, seeing their thoughts, said to them: Every kingdom divided against itself shall be brought to desolation, and house upon house shall fall. And if Satan also be divided against himself, how shall his kingdom stand? because you say that through Beelzebub I cast out devils. Now if I cast out devils by Beelzebub, by whom do your children cast them out? Therefore, they shall be your judges. But if I by the finger of God cast out devils, doubtless the kingdom of God is come upon you. When a strong man armed keepeth his court, those things are in peace which he possesseth. But if a stronger one than he is come upon him and overcome him, he will take away all his armor wherein he trusted, and will distribute his spoils. He that is not with Me is against Me: and he that gathereth not with Me scattereth. When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through places without water, seeking rest: and not finding, he saith: I will return into my house whence I came out. And when he is come, he findeth it swept and garnished. Then he goeth and taketh with him seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and entering in they dwell there. And the last state of that man becomes worse than the first. And it came to pass, as He spoke these things, a certain woman from the crowd, lifting up her voice, said to Him: Blessed is the womb that bore Thee, and the paps that gave Thee suck. But he said: Yea rather, blessed are they who hear the word of God, and keep it.
Sunday

Christ was casting out a devil.

Here we may see, a kind of contention or striving between Christ an the devil, in that the Text saith Christ was casting out the devil. which words casting out) import an earnest endeavor on the part of Christ, or applying his force to do it and on the other side the devil holding as hard as he could to remain there, so that there was a contention or striving, between them.

This particular contention ad conflict, that is between heaven and hell, about our salvation, and souls health.

Almighty God besides many others expressions of his care towards us, is compared in holy Scripture to a shepherd, and we his flock, and for a more particular example he may be resembled to Jacob, that served Laban: fourteen years, as his shepherd for his fair daughter Rachel, to have her to his wife, for his well looking to his flock.

All the care which Jacob took of his flock, which is expressed in the Text of the scripture to be very much, and a great deal more no doubt it was, then is expressed, being done of entire love to Rachel, we may attribute unto God, and a thousand times more concerning the care and custody he hath of our souls; but which this disparity and difference,did he hath of our souls; but with this disparity and difference, that Jacob did it not for the love of his flock, but for the love of Rachel, which was in deed for the love of himself, that he might enjoy her but God doest it merely for the love of his flock, which are we ourselves, having no need for himself.

The Prophet David saith to God. O Lord, thou hast no need of my goods. He might have said (and so may every man else) nor of me, he being so happy in himself for all eternity, that nothing could be added thereunto.

And as God is thus careful of us, to bring us to salvation: so is the devil to bring us to damnation: of whom Saint Peter saith he goeth about (all the world over ) like a roaring Lion seeking by all means whom he may devour.

A holy Abbot met him on a time in the form of an Apothecary, with diverse sorts of glasses, and vials at his back, of drugs and pothecary stuff, and demanded whither he went: He answered to his Monastery to visit his Monks, & to minister physician unto them, according to every ones dispositions.

Behold here, how the devil goeth about, as Saint Peter saith, not only like a roaring Lion; but also like a crafty fox.

If the devil be this officious and industrious to hurt us, how careful and vigilant ought we to be to withstand him, and to keep him out of our souls; that he get not leave and power of God to assail us, as as he did Job.

And for our coldness & negligence to enter into us, as he did into this miserable man in the gospel and make us in soul as he did in this port missable man in the gospel, dumb, and as another Evangelist saith, deaf; as many, (God help them) are, for although God hath a far greater care of our Salvation, then the devil of our damnation (which yet is very great as is aforesaid) yet unless we by grace, be careful, to concur with him it will not avail us, and therefore when SAin Peter telleth us that the devil our adversary go about like a roaring Lion seeking whom he may devour he premiss this Cavaet: be ye sober & watch say me no more, but meaning this: otherwise peradventure God will permit him to prevail against you.



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