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Adam Clarke

Adam Clarke (1762 - 1832)

Read freely text sermons and articles by the speaker Adam Clarke in text and pdf format. Was a British Methodist theologian and Biblical scholar. He is chiefly remembered for writing a commentary on the Bible which took him 40 years to complete and which was a primary Methodist theological resource for two centuries. Contained in 6 volumes, consisting of nearly 1,000 pages each, it was considered the most comprehensive commentary on the Bible ever prepared by one man.

As a theologian, Clarke reinforced the teachings of Methodist founder John Wesley. He taught that the Bible provides a complete interpretation of God's nature and will. He considered Scripture itself a miracle of God's grace that "takes away the veil of darkness and ignorance." With such an understanding, Clarke was first and foremost a Biblical theologian, often uneasy with purely systematic approaches to theology.

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Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 47
      Introduction The destruction of Babylon is denounced by a beautiful selection of circumstances, in which her prosperous is contrasted with her adverse condition. She is represented as a tender and delicate female reduced to the work and abject condition ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 48
      Introduction The Jews reproved for their obstinate attachment to idols, notwithstanding their experience of the Divine providence over them; and of the Divine prescience that revealed by the prophets the most remarkable events which concerned them, that ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 49
      Introduction In this chapter the Messiah is introduced, declaring the full extent of his commission, which is not only to be Savior to the Jews, but also to the Gentiles. The power and efficacy of his word is reprehended by apt images; the ill success of ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 5
      Introduction This chapter begins with representing, in a beautiful parable, the tender care of God for his people, and their unworthy returns for his goodness, Isaiah 5:1-7. The parable or allegory is then dropped; and the prophet, in plain terms, reprov ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 50
      Introduction In this chapter God vindicates his dealings unth his people, whose alienation is owing to themselves, Isaiah 50:1. And, by allusion to the temporal deliverances connected with the drying up of the Red Sea and the Euphrates, asserts his power ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 51
      Introduction The prophet exhorts the children of Abraham to trust in the Lord; and briefly, but beautifully, describes the great blessedness which should be the consequence, Isaiah 51:1-3. Then, turning to the Gentiles, encourages them to look for a port ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 52
      Introduction Jerusalem, in manifest allusion to the strong figure employed in the close of the preceding chapter, is represented as fallen asleep in the dust, and in that helpless state bound by her enemies. The prophet, with all the ardor natural to one ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 53
       Introduction This chapter foretells the sufferings of the Messiah, the end for which he was to die, and the advantages resulting to mankind from that illustrious event. It begins with a complaint of the infidelity of the Jews, Isaiah 53:1; the offense ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 54
      Introduction Some suppose this chapter to have been addressed to the Gentiles; some, to the Jewish Church; and some, to the Christian, in its first stage. On comparing the different parts of it, particularly the seventh and eighth verses, with the remain ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 55
      Introduction This chapter first displays the fullness, freeness, excellence, and everlasting nature of the blessings of the Gospel, and foretells again the enlargement of Messiah‘s kingdom, Isaiah 55:1-5. This view leads the prophet to exhort all to se ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 56
      Introduction Whoever would partake of the blessings of the Gospel is required to be holy in all manner of life and conversation. And he that will be so is declared to be accepted according to this gracious dispensation, the blessings of which are large a ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 57
      Introduction After mentioning the removal of righteous persons as an awful symptom of the approach of Divine judgments, Isaiah 57:1, Isaiah 57:2, the prophet goes on to charge the nation in general with idolatry, and with courting the unprofitable allian ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 58
      Introduction This elegant chapter contains a severe reproof of the Jews on account of their vices, particularly their hypocrisy in practising and relying on outward ceremonies, such as fasting and bodily humiliation, without true repentance, Isaiah 58:1- ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 59
      Introduction Thy chapter contains a more general reproof of the wickedness of the Jews, Isaiah 59:1-8. After this they are represented confessing their sins, and deploring the unhappy consequences of them, Isaiah 59:9-15. On this act of humiliation God, ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 6
      Introduction This chapter, by a particular designation of Isaiah to the prophetic office, Isaiah 6:1-8, introduces, with great solemnity, a declaration of the whole tenor of the Diving conduct in reference to his people, who, on account of their unbelief ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 60
      Introduction The glorious prospect displayed in this chapter seems to have elevated the prophet even above his usual majesty. The subject is the very flourishing condition of the Church of Jesus Christ at that period of the Gospel dispensation when both ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 61
      Introduction The subject of the preceding chapter is continued in this; and to give it the greater solemnity, the Messiah is introduced describing his character and office, and confirming the large promises made before, Isaiah 61:1-9. In consequence of t ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 62
      Introduction The prophet opens this chapter with ardent prayers that the happy period of reconciliation just now promised, and here again foretold, may be hastened, Isaiah 62:1-5. He then calls upon the faithful, particularly the priests and Levites, to ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 63
      Introduction The prophet, (or rather the Church he represents), sees the great Deliverer, long promised and expected, making his appearance, after having crushed his enemies, like grapes in the wine-vat. The comparison suggests a lively idea of the wrath ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 64
      Introduction The whole of this chapter, which is very pathetic and tender, may be considered as a formulary of prayer and humiliation intended for the Jews in order to their conversion, Isaiah 64:1-12. Verse 1 O that thou wouldest rend the heavens - ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 65
      Introduction We have here a vindication of God‘s dealings with the Jews, Isaiah 65:1, Isaiah 65:2. To this end the prophet points out their great hypocrisy, and gives a particular enumeration of their dreadful abominations, many of which were committed ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 66
      Introduction This chapter treats of the same subject with the foregoing. God, by his prophet, tells the Jews, who valued themselves much on their temple and pompous worship, that the Most High dwelleth not in temples made with hands; and that no outward ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 7
      Introduction The king of Judah and the royal family being in the utmost consternation on receiving accounts of the invasion of the kings of Syria and Israel, the prophet is sent to assure them that God would make good his promises to David and his house; ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 8
      Introduction Prediction respecting the conquest of Syria and Israel by the Assyrians, Isaiah 8:1-4. Israel, for rejecting the gentle stream of Shiloah, near Jerusalem, is threatened to be overflowed by the great river of Assyria, manifestly alluding by t ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah 9
      Introduction This chapter contains an illustrious prophecy of the Messiah. He is represented under the glorious figure of the sun, or light, rising on a benighted world, and diffusing joy and gladness wherever he sheds his beams, Isaiah 9:1-3. His conque ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Isaiah overview
      Introduction to the Book of the Prophet Isaiah On the term prophet, and on the nature and several kinds of prophecy, I have already discoursed in different parts of this work. See the notes on Genesis 15:1 (note); Genesis 20:7 (note), and the preface t ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary James 1
      Introduction He addresses the dispersed of the twelve tribes, James 1:1. Shows that they should rejoice under the cross, because of the spiritual good which they may derive from it, especially in the increase and perfecting of their patience, James 1:2-4 ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary James 2
      Introduction We should not prefer the rich to the poor, nor show any partiality inconsistent with the Gospel of Christ, James 2:1-4. God has chosen the poor, rich in faith, to be heirs of his kingdom, even those whom some among their brethren despised an ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary James 3
      Introduction They are exhorted not to be many masters, James 3:1. And to bridle the tongue, which is often an instrument of much evil, James 3:2-12. The character and fruits of true and false wisdom, James 3:13-18. Verse 1 Be not many masters - Do no ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary James 4
      Introduction The origin of wars and contentions, and the wretched lot of those who are engaged in them, James 4:1, James 4:2. Why so little heavenly good is obtained, James 4:3. The friendship of the world is enmity with God, James 4:4, James 4:5. God re ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary James 5
      Introduction The profligate rich are in danger of God‘s judgments, because of their pride, fraudulent dealings, riotous living, and cruelty, James 5:1-6. The oppressed followers of God should be patient, for the Lord‘s coming is nigh; and should not ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary James overview
      Preface to the General Epistle of James There have been more doubts, and more diversity of opinion, concerning the author of this epistle, and the time in which it was written, than about most other parts of the New Testament. To enter at large into a ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Jeremiah 1
      Introduction General title to the whole Book, Jeremiah 1:1-3. Jeremiah receives a commission to prophesy concerning nations and kingdoms, a work to which in the Divine purpose he had been appointed before his birth, Jeremiah 1:4-10. The vision of the rod ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Jeremiah 10
      Introduction The Jews, about to be carried into captivity, are here warned against the superstition and idolatry of that country to which they were going. Chaldea was greatly addicted to astrology, and therefore the prophet begins with warning them again ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Jeremiah 11
      Introduction The prophet proclaims the tenor of God‘s covenant with the Jews of old, Jeremiah 11:1-5; and then reproves them for their hereditary disobedience, Jeremiah 11:6-19. In consequence of this the Almighty is introduced, declaring he will show ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Jeremiah 12
      Introduction This chapter is connected with the foregoing. The prophet expostulates with God concerning the ways of Providence in permitting the wicked to prosper, Jeremiah 12:1-4. It is intimated to him that he must endure still greater trials, Jeremiah ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Jeremiah 13
      Introduction This chapter contains an entire prophecy. The symbol of the linen girdle, left to rot for a considerable time, was a type of the manner in which the glory of the Jews should be marred during the course of their long captivity, Jeremiah 13:1- ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Jeremiah 14
      Introduction This chapter begins with foretelling a drought that should greatly distress the land of Judea, the effects of which are described in a most pathetic manner, Jeremiah 14:1-6. The prophet then, in the people‘s name, makes a confession of sin ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Jeremiah 15
      Introduction God declares to Jeremiah that not even Moses and Samuel, whose prayers had been so prevalent, could divert him from his purpose of punishing so wicked a people, Jeremiah 15:1. Accordingly their captivity is again announced in a variety of im ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Jeremiah 16
      Introduction On account of the evils which threatened his country, the prophet is forbidden to encumber himself with a wife and family, or to bear any share in the little joys and sorrows of his neighbors, which were to be forgotten and absorbed in those ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Jeremiah 17
      Introduction This chapter begins with setting forth the very strong bias which the people of Judah had to idolatry, with the fatal consequences, Jeremiah 17:1-4. The happiness of the man that trusted in Jehovah is then beautifully contrasted with the opp ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Jeremiah 18
      Introduction The type of the potter‘s vessel, and its signification, Jeremiah 18:1-10. The inhabitants of Judah and Jerusalem exhorted to repentance, Jeremiah 18:11; but on their refusal, (which is represented to be as unnatural as if a man should pref ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Jeremiah 19
      Introduction By the significant type of breaking a potter‘s vessel, Jeremiah is directed to predict the utter desolation of Judah and Jerusalem, Jeremiah 19:1-15. The prophets taught frequently by symbolic actions as well as by words. Verse 1 Go an ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Jeremiah 2
      Introduction God expresses his continued regard for his people, long since chosen, Jeremiah 2:1-3. He then expostulates with them on their ungrateful and worse than heathen return to his regard, Jeremiah 2:4-11; at which even the inanimate creation must ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Jeremiah 20
      Introduction Jeremiah, on account of his prophesying evil concerning Judah and Jerusalem, is beaten and imprisoned by Pashur, chief governor of the temple, Jeremiah 20:1, Jeremiah 20:2. On the following day the prophet is released, who denounces the awfu ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Jeremiah 21
      Introduction Nebuchadnezzar being come up against Jerusalem, Zedekiah sends Pashur and Zephaniah to the prophet to request him to intercede with God in behalf of his people, Jeremiah 21:1, Jeremiah 21:2. But he is declared to be against Jerusalem, and th ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Jeremiah 22
      Introduction This section of prophecy, extending to the end of the eighth verse of the next chapter, is addressed to the king of Judah and his people. It enjoins on them the practice of justice and equity, as they would hope to prosper, Jeremiah 22:14; b ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Jeremiah 23
       Introduction Sequel of the discourse which commenced in the preceding chapter. The prophet denounces vengeance against the pastors of Israel who have scattered and destroyed the flock of the Lord, Jeremiah 23:1, Jeremiah 23:2. He concludes with graciou ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Jeremiah 24
      Introduction Under the emblem of the good and bad figs is represented the fate of the Jews already gone into captivity with Jeconiah, and of those that remained still in their own country with Zedekiah. It is likewise intimated that God would deal kindly ... read more

Adam Clarke Commentary Jeremiah 25
      Introduction This chapter contains a summary of the judgments denounced by Jeremiah against Judah, Babylon, and many other nations. It begins with reproving the Jews for disobeying the calls of God to repentance, Jeremiah 25:1-7; on which account their c ... read more

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