17:1 Then said he unto the disciples, 1 It is impossible but that offences will come: but woe [unto him], through whom they come!
(1) The Church is of necessity subject to offences, but the Lord will not suffer them unpunished, if any of the least be offended. 17:3 2 Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him.
(2) Our reprehensions must be just and proceed from love and charity. 17:5 3 And the apostles said unto the Lord, Increase our faith.
(3) God will never be utterly lacking to the godly (although he may not be as thorough with them as they wish) even in those difficulties which cannot be overcome by mans reason. 17:6 And the Lord said, If ye had faith as a a grain of mustard seed, ye might say unto this sycamine tree, Be thou plucked up by the root, and be thou planted in the sea; and it should obey you.
(a) If you had no more faith, but the quantity of the grain of mustard seed. 17:7 4 But which of you, having a servant plowing or feeding cattle, will say unto him by and by, when he is come from the field, Go and sit down to meat?
(4) Seeing that God may rightfully claim for himself both us and all that is ours, he cannot be indebted to us for anything, although we labour mightily until we die. 17:10 5 So likewise ye, when ye shall have done all those things which are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants: we have done that which was our duty to do.
(5) No matter how perfectly we may keep the law, it deserves no reward. 17:11 6 And it came to pass, as he went to Jerusalem, that he passed through the midst of Samaria and Galilee.
(6) Christ does good even to those who will be unthankful, but the benefits of God to salvation only profit those who are thankful. 17:20 7 And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, The kingdom of God cometh not with b observation:
(7) The kingdom of God is not discerned by many although it is most present before their eyes, because they foolishly persuade themselves that it is to come with outward pomp. 17:21 Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is c within you.
(b) With any outward pomp and show of majesty to be known by: for there were still many plain and evident tokens by which men might have understood that Christ was the Messiah, whose kingdom had been so long looked for: but he speaks in this place of those signs which the Pharisees dreamed of, who looked for an earthly Messianic kingdom.
(c) You look around for the Messiah as though he were absent, but he is amongst you in the midst of you. 17:22 8 And he said unto the disciples, The days will come, when ye shall desire to see d one of the days of the Son of man, and ye shall not see [it].
(8) We often neglect those things when they are present which we afterward desire when they are gone, but in vain. 17:23 9 And they shall say to you, See here; or, see there: go not after [them], nor follow [them].
(d) The time will come when you will seek for the Son of Man with great sorrow of heart, and will not find him.
(9) Christ forewarns us that false Christs will come, and that his glory will suddenly be spread far and wide through the world after the shame of the cross is put out and extinguished. 17:26 10 And as it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man.
17:31 11 In that day, he which shall be upon the housetop, and his stuff in the house, let him not come down to take it away: and he that is in the field, let him likewise not return back.
(10) The world will be taken by surprise with the sudden judgment of God, and therefore the faithful ought to continually watch.
17:33 Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life shall e preserve it.
(11) We must pay careful attention that neither distrust nor the enticements of this world, nor any consideration of friendship hinder us in the least way.
(e) That is, will save it, as Matthew expounds it: for the life that is spoken of here is everlasting salvation. 17:37 12 And they answered and said unto him, Where, Lord? And he said unto them, Wheresoever the body [is], thither will the eagles be gathered together.
(12) The only way to continue is to cleave to Christ.