The Third Sunday in Advent The Gospel John 1. 19-28. Friday Meditation: A Plaine Path-way To Heaven Thomas Hill 1634
John 1. 19-28 GOSPEL
At that time the Jews sent from Jerusalem priests and Levites to John, to ask him: Who art thou? And he confessed, and did not deny; and he confessed: I am not the Christ. And they asked him: What then? Art thou Elias? And he said: I am not. Art thou the Prophet? And he answered: No. They said therefore unto him: Who art thou, that we may give an answer to them that sent us? What sayest thou of thyself? He said: I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said the Prophet Isaias. And they that were sent were of the Pharisees. And they asked him, and said to him: Why then dost thou baptize; if thou be not Christ, nor Elias, nor the Prophet? John answered them, saying: I baptize with water: but there hath stood one in the midst of you, whom you know not. The same is He that shall come after me, who is preferred before me: the latchet of whose shoe I am not worthy to loose. These things were done in Bethania, beyond the Jordan, where John was baptizing.
Consideration for Friday
Saint John. had two fingular Ma'ac, ticles, the one of an Angel 3.1. according to the prophecy of Mani, Malachic, ſpeaking to Chriſt in L. the perſon of God, the father: Behold I will ſend my. Angel (to w st Sainat lohn Baptiſt: before thg face, to prepare thy wayes; The other citie, of Voice of one crying in the wildernes, ac- cording to the prophecy of Elay: Now Šaina loha bauing theſe to titles to be ſtiled.by, when the lewes demanded of hiin who he was,gaue not for anſwer his beſt title of..on Angel, ( as ſome proud; and haughty Spirits would baue donc ) but out of humility choſe the more lowly title filing himſelf the voice of a cries in the wildernes : So Chriſt 184 The plaine Chriſt himſelfour Lord, hauing, amongſt other infinit titles of glory, wo fpeciallone's as he was the Meſſias or Saucour of man- kind, the one; being the fonne of God according to liis diuine nature, The other, the ionnc of man, according to his humani · ty:yet did not vlually call himtelf but by the title of humility, the ſonne of man.
But God the Father said of him, when he was baptized by Saint John in the river of Jordan, This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased.
For God almighty never suffereth humility to be unrewarded.
And therefore though saint John for humility sake called him ſelf the voice of a crier in the wilderness: our Lord called him an Angel, applying the prophecy of Malachi unto him; Though he in lowliness of mind esteemed himſelf no Prophet, & refused pathway to heaven.
Ass schufed that.citle offered by the Lac.14 lewes : yet. Chrift our Saucour 10. ſayd he was a Dropher and more che a Prophet. By which we may icarne to hunble our ſelues in our owne concept and God will exalt us.
We must sit down at che.lawer end of the table; that thie maifter of the banquet w ay bidde vs fic vp higher with honor.
We have also owo titles by Gods grace, The greater, to be called friends of God; and the meaner, to be Gods. servants, unprofitable in deed, and in our own judgment.
Our Savior councellech us, when we have done all we are commanded, for humility sake to think, and say of our selves that we are not only his servants, but even unprofitable servants. And yet he loan, is himself vouchsafe to call us is: not servants, but his friends. If we know how to bumble our selves, selves, God know how to exalt us : If we endeavor to exalt our selves, God knoweth how to humble us.
For every one that exalt himself (sayth our Lord) shall be humbled: and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.
Thus much of our humility towards God.
Towards our neighbor we can have no better rule then that of holy St. Francis: who though he were indeed most virtuous, yet did he esteem himself sincerely inferior to all men, which is the highest degree of humility.
And being demanded by one of his brethren how he could really, and verily think himself so: since in every mans judgement, and knowledge there were a thousand greater sinners then he: his answer was, that those sinners if they had that grace of God given them, which he had received, would have been far better then he, and therefore he accounted himself worse then they, yea worse then any whosoever.