Ver. 2,3. You can, saith our Saviour, make observations upon the works of God in nature and common providence, and from such observations you can make conclusions; if you see the sky red in the evening, you can conclude from thence that the morrow will be fair, because you think that the redness of the sky at night speaks the clouds thin and the air pure; and on the other side, the redness of it in the morning speaks the clouds thick, so as the sun cannot disperse them; or because you observe that generally it so proveth, though nothing be more mutable than the air. But you cannot
discern the signs of the times: you are only dull at making observations upon the Scriptures, and the will of God revealed in them concerning me. You might observe that all the signs of the Messias are fulfilled in me: I was born of a virgin, as was prophesied by Isaiah, Isa_7:14; in Bethlehem Judah, as was prophesied by Micah, Mic_5:2; at a time when the sceptre was departed from Judah, and the lawgiver from his feet, as was prophesied by Jacob, Gen_49:10: that John the Baptist is come in the power and spirit of Elias, to prepare my way before me, as was prophesied by Malachi, Mal_4:5; that there is one come, who openeth the eyes of the blind, and unstops the ears of the deaf, and maketh the lame to leap as an hart, and the tongue of the dumb to sing, according to the prophecy, Isa_35:5,6. All these are the signs of the time when the Messiah was to come; but these things you cannot discern, but, like a company of hypocrites, who pretend one thing and do another, you come and ask a sign, that you might believe in me, when you have so many, and yet will not believe.