Iohn Baptist be his Eremites life, by his preaching and Baptisme, calleth al vnto penance,
to prepare them to Christ. 10. He preacheth to the Pharisees and Sadducees, threatning to them
(vnles they truly doe penance) reprobation here, and damnation hereafter; and for saluation
sendeth them to Christ and his Bapstisme. Which being far more excellent then Iohns, yet Christ
himself among those penitents vouchsafeth to come vnto Iohns Baptisme. Where he hath testimonie from
1. THE SECOND part of this Ghospel, Of the Preparation that was made to the manifestation of Christ. AND in those dayes Mar. 1,4.
Luke 3,3. cometh Iohn the Baptist preaching in the Desert.
Of this world desert (in Greeke eremus) commeth the name Eromitages & Eremites, that liue a religious and austere life in deserts and solitarie places, by the example of S. John Baptist; whom the holy Doctours therfore cal the Prince and as it were the authour of such profession. S. Chrys. ho. 1 in Marcum & ho. de. Io. Baptista. Hiero. ad Eustoch. de custod. virg. Isid. li. 1. c. 15 de divi off. Bernardus de excel. Io. Baptiste. Wherewith the Protestants are so offended that they say, S. Chrysostom spake rashly, and vntruely. And no maruel, for whereas the Euangelist himself in this place maketh him a perfect paterne of pennance, and Eremitical life, for desert or wildernes, for his rough and rude apparel, for abstayning from al delicate meates (according to our Sauiours testimonie also of him Mt. 11, 8. Luc. 7, 33) they are not ashamed to peruert al with this strange commentarie, that it was a desert *ful of townes and villages, his garment was **chamlet, his meate meate ***such as the countrey gaue, and the people there vsed: to make him thereby but a common man like to the rest, in his manner of life: cleane against Scriptures, Fathers, & reason.
*Magdeb. Cent. 5, c. 6 pag. 711.
**Cen. 1 li. 1 c. 10.
***Cythræus in 3 cap. Mat. Bucerus ibid.
See Canis. de verb. Dei corruptelis li. 1 c. 2 3 4. desert of Iewrie,
2. & saying: Doe pennance.
So is the Latin, word for word, so readeth al antiquitie, namely S. Cyprian ep. 52. often, and S. Augustin li. 13 Confes. c. 12. and it is a very vsual speach in the New Testament, specially in the preaching of S. Iohn Baptist, *Christ himself, and **the Apostles; to signifie perfect repentance, which hath not only confession and amendment, but contrition, or sorow for the offence, and paineful satisfaction: such as S. Cyprian speaketh of in al the foresaid epistle. But the Aduersaries of purpose (as ***namely Beza protesteth) mislike that interpretation, because it fauoureth Satisfaction for sinne, which they cannot abide. Where if they pretend the ****Greeke word, we send them to these places Mat. 11,21. Luke 10,13. 2. Cor. 7,9. Where it must needes signifie, sorowful, payneful, and satisfactorie repentance. We tel them also that *****S. Basil a Greeke Doctour calleth the Niniuites repentance with fasting, and hairecloth and ashes, by the same Greeke word μετανοιαν. And more we wil tel them in other places.
**Luke 13,3. 5. Luke 24,57.
***Act. 2,38. 26:20.
*****Annot. in hunc locum. Serm. in fam. & siccit. Doe pennance: for the Kingdom of Heauen is at hand.
3. For this is he that was spoken of by Esay the Prophet, saying: Isai. 40,3. A voyce of one crying in the desert, prepare ye the way of our Lord, make straight his paths
4. And the said Iohn had his garment of Camels heare, and a girdle of a skinne about his Ioynes: and his meate was locustes & wilde honie.
5. Then went forth to him Hierusalem and al Iewrie, and al the countrey about Iordan:
6. & were baptized of him in Iordan, Confessing their sinnes.
Iohn did prepare the way to Christ and his Sacraments, not only by his Baptisme, but by inducing the people to Confession of their sinnes. Which is not to acknowledge themselues in general to be sinners, but also to vtter euery man his sinnes. confessing their sinnes.
7. And seeing many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming to his Baptisme, he said to them. Ye vipers brood, who hath shewed you to flee from the wrath to come?
8. Yeald therfore Fruit worthie.
He preacheth Satisfaction by doing worthy fruits or workes of penance, which are (as S. Hierom saith in 2. Ioel) fasting, praying, almes, and the like. fruit worthie of pennance.
9. And delight not to say within your selues, we haue Abraham to our father. For I tell you that God is able of these stones to raise vp children to Abraham.
10. For now The axe.
Here Preachers are taught to dehort from doing euil for feare of Hel, and to exhort to doe good in hope of Heauen: which kind of preaching our Aduersaries doe condemne. the axe is put to the roote of the trees. Euery tree therfore that doth It is not only damnable, to doe il, but also, not to do good. Aug. Ser. 61 de temp. not yeald good fruit, shal be cut downe, & cast into the fire.
11. Mar. 1,8.
Act. 11,16. 19,4. I indeed baptize you In water.
Iohns baptisme and Christs.
Iohns Baptisme did not remit sinnes, nor was comparable to Christs Baptisme, as here it is playne, & in manie other places. Hiero. adv. Lucifer. Aug. de Bap. cont. Donat. li. 5. c. 9. 10. 11. Yet is it an article of our Aduersaries that th’one is no better then the other which they say not to extol Iohns, but to derogate from Christs baptisme, so farre, that they make it of no more valure or efficacie for remission of sinnes, & grace and iustification, then was Iohns: thereby to maintaine their manifold heresies, that Baptisme taketh not away sinnes; that a man is no cleaner nor iuster by the Sacrament of Baptisme then before; that it is not necessarie for children vnto saluation, but it is enough to be borne of Christian parents; & such like erroneous positions wel knowen among the Caluinists. in water vnto pennance, but he that shal come after me, is stronger then I, whose shoes I am not worthy to beare, he shal baptize you in the Holy Ghost; & fire.
12. Whose fanne is in his hand, and he shal cleane purge his Floore.
This floore is his Church militant here in earth, wherein are both good and bad (here signified by corne and chaffe) til the separation be made in the day of iudgement: contrarie to the doctrine of the Heretikes, that hold, the Church to consist only of the good. floore: and he wil gather his wheate into the barne, but the chaffe he wil burne with vnquenchable fire.
13. Then cometh Iesvs from Galilee to Iordan, vnto Iohn, to be baptized of him.
14. But Iohn stayed him, saying: I ought to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me?
15. And Iesvs answering, sayed to him: Suffer me for this time. For so it becommeth vs to fulfil al iustice. Then he suffered him.
16. And Iesvs being baptized forthwith came out of the water: and loe the Heauens Opened.
To signifie that Heauen was shut in the old law, til Christ by his Passion opened it, and so by his Ascension was the first that entered into it; contrarie to the doctrine of the Heretikes. See Hebr. 9,8. and 11,40. opened to him: & he saw the Spirit of God descending as a doue, & coming vpon him.
17. And behold a voice from Heauen saying: This is my beloved Sonne, in whom I am wel pleased.