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other disciple, whom Jesus loved, and saith unto them, They have taken away the Lord out of the sepulchre, and we know not where they have laid him: It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, and Mary the mother of James, and other women that were with them, which told these things unto the apostles. Then arose Peter and that other disciple; and came to the sepulchre. So they ran both together: and the other disciple did outrun Peter, and came first to the sepulchre. And he stooping down, and looking in, saw the linen clothes lying; yet went he not in. Then cometh Simon Peter following him, and went into the sepulchre, and seeth the linen clothes lie, and the napkin that was about his head, not lying with the linen clothes, but wrapped together in a place by itself. Then went in also that other disciple, which came first to the sepulchre, and he saw, and believed. For as yet they knew not the scripture, that he must rise again from the dead. Then the disciples went away again unto their own home, wondering at that which was come to pass.
Now when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils. But she stood without at the sepulchre weeping: and as she wept, she stooped down, and looked into the sepulchre ; and seeth two angels in white sitting, the one at the head, and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain. And they say unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? She saith unto them, Because they have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him. And when she had thus said, she turned herself back, and saw Jesus standing, and knew not that it was Jesus. Jesus saith unto her, Woman, why weepest thou? whom seekest thou? She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away. Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith
unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master. Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.
Let the faith of what has been done with regard to our glorified Head, and shall at length be accomplished with respect to all his members, daily gladden our hearts. When our eyes are weeping, and our souls sinking within us, let us raise our thoughts to Jesus, our risen, and now ascended Redeemer, who says to all his brethren these gracious words (which may justly be received with transports of astonishment, and fill our hearts at the same time with joy unspeakable, and full of glory), “I ascend to my Father and your Father, and to my God and your God."
The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, is now, through the death and resurrection of his dear Son (whom by raising him from the dead he has so solemnly owned under that relation), become our Father and our God. As such let us honour him, love him, and rejoice in him: and when we must leave this world, which Christ has long since left, let it delight our souls to think that we shall likewise ascend after him, and dwell with him in his propitious Divine presence. In the mean time, if we are risen with Christ, let us seek those things which are above, where Christ now sitteth at the right-hand of God, (Col. iii. 1); and let us be willing, in whatever sense God shall appoint, to be made conformable to his death, that we may also be partakers of his resurrection and glory. (Phil. iii. 10, 11.)
MARK XVI. 10-13. LUKE Xxiv. 14-35. JOHN XX. 18. AND Mary Magdalene came to the disciples, as they mourned and wept, and told them, that she had seen the Lord, and that he had spoken these things unto her. And they, when they had heard that he was alive, and had been seen of her, believed not.
After that he appeared in another form unto two of them. For behold two of them went that same day into the country, to a village called Emmaus, which was from Jerusalem about three-score furlongs. And they talked together of all these things
which had happened. And it came to pass, that, while they communed together and reasoned, Jesus himself drew near, and went with them. But their eyes were holden that they should not know him. And he said unto them, What manner of communications are these that ye have one to another, as ye walk, and are sad?
And the one of them, whose name was Cleopas, answering said unto him, Art thou only a stranger in Jerusalem, and hast not known the things which are come to pass there in these days? And he said unto them, What things? And they said unto him, Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, which was a prophet, mighty in deed and word before God and all the people and how the chief priests and our rulers delivered him to be condemned to death, and have crucified him. But we trusted that it had been he which should have redeemed Israel: and beside all this, to-day is the third day since these things were done. Yea, and certain women also of our company made us astonished, which were early at the sepulchre; and when they found not his body, they came, saying, that they had also seen a vision of angels, which said that he was alive. And certain of them which were with us went to the sepulchre, and found it even so as the women had said: but him they saw not.
Then he said unto them, O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken: Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into his glory? And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself. And they drew nigh unto the village, whither they went: and he made as though he would have gone further. But they constrained him, saying, Abide with us: for it is toward evening, and the day is far spent.—And he went in to tarry with them. And it came to pass, as he sat at meat with them, he took bread, and blessed
And their eyes
it, and brake, and gave to them. were opened, and they knew him; and he vanished out of their sight. And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures? And they rose up the same hour, and returned to Jerusalem, and found the eleven gathered together, and them that were with them, saying, The Lord is risen indeed, and hath appeared to Simon. And they told what things were done in the way, and how he was known of them in breaking of bread. Neither believed they them.
How delightful a close of so melancholy a day to these pious travellers! a day surely long to be remembered by them and by us! They were on a journey; but they did not amuse themselves on it with any trifling subject of discourse. Their hearts were set upon Christ, and therefore their tongues were employed in speaking of him. And behold, Christ himself, the dear theme of their discourse, makes one among them; he enlightens their eyes and warms their hearts, and at length makes himself known to them in the breaking of bread.
So may we often be speaking of Christ, from the fulness of our hearts, when we go out, and when we come in! So may he still, in some degree, join himself with us in spirit, guiding our souls into Divine knowledge, and animating them with holy love!
They bear an honourable and a just testimony to that great Prophet whom God had raised up for them, as mighty before him both in word and deed. But they knew not how to see through so dark a cloud: their hopes were almost extinguished, and they could only say, We trusted this had been he that should have redeemed Israel. Pitiable weakness! Yet too just an emblem of the temper which often prevails in the pious mind; when the Christian is ready to give up all, if deliverance does not proceed just in the method he expected. Yet was Christ even then delivering Israel in the most glorious and effectual manner, by those very sufferings which gave them such distress. Verily thou art the God of Israel, and the Saviour, when thou art a God that hidest thyself from us. (Isa. xlv. 15.)
In faithful friendship, and with a plainness well becoming his office, the compassionate Redeemer upbraids them with their slowness of heart to believe these things, when they had received line upon line, precept upon precept, concerning them.
How justly do we fall under such a rebuke in many instances! Let us then humbly say, Lord, increase our faith! (Luke xvii. 5.)
We should reasonably have thought ourselves happy in an opportunity of hearing or reading this discourse of Jesus, in which he threw such lustre on the prophecies of the Old Testament, and proved that, according to the tenor of them, it was necessary that the Messiah should thus suffer, and so enter into his glory. As Providence has denied us this satisfaction, let us however improve this general and very important hint, that Moses and all the prophets speak of these things. Let us delight to trace the heavenly beam from its earliest dawn, and to observe how it grew brighter and brighter unto the perfect day. May the blessed Spirit, by whom those mysterious predictions were inspired, so direct our inquiries, that every veil may be taken off from our eyes, that we may see Jesus in the Old Testament as well as in the New; and see him in both with that lively fervour of holy affection which may cause our hearts to burn within us! And oh, that we may especially find that, when we surround his table, he makes himself known to us in the breaking of bread, in such a manner, as to fill our souls with all joy, as well as peace in believing! (Rom. xv. 13.)
LUKE XXIV. 36-43. JOHN XX. 19-23.
THEN the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, and as they thus spake, came Jesus, and stood in the midst of them, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you, But they were terrified and affrighted, and supposed that they had seen a spirit. And he said unto them, Why are ye troubled? and why do thoughts arise in your hearts? Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have.
And when he had thus spoken, he shewed them his hands, and his feet, and his side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the Lord. And while they yet believed not for joy, and wondered, he said .nto them, Have ye here any meat? And they gave