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an honest heart was sufficient to propagate it without any aid derived from the cabinets of princes or the schools of human science, he took twelve poor illiterate men into his company, admitted them to an intimacy with himself, and, after he had kept them awhile in tuition, sent them to preach the good tidings of salvation to their countrymen. A while after he sent seventy more, and the discourses which he delivered to each class at their ordination, are made up of the most wise and benevolent sentiments that ever fell from the mouth of man. All the topics are pure theology, and all unpolluted with puerile conceits, human politics, literary dreams, ecclesiastical traditions, or party disputes, which those sanctimonious hypocrites, scribes and pharisees, and pretended doctors and rabbies, had introduced into it.
Jesus Christ never paid any regard to the place where he delivered his sermons; he had taught in the synagogues, public walks, private houses; he had preached on mountains, and in barges and ships. His missionaries imitated him, and convenience for the time was consecration of the place. He had been equally indifferent to the posture; he stood or sat as his own ease and the popular edification required. The time also had been accommodated to the same end. He had preached early in the morning, late in the evening, on sabbath days and festivals, and whenever else the people had leisure and inclination to hear. It had been foretold, the Messiah should not lift up nor cry, nor cause his voice to be heard in the streets; that is, should not use the artifices of those who sought for popularity. It should seem, that Jesus Christ used very little action : but that little was
just, natural, grave, and expressive. He sometimes wept, and always felt; but he never expressed his emotions in a theatrical manner ; much less did he preach as a drowsy pedant declaims, who has no emotions to express.
The success that accompanied the ministry of our Emmanuel was truly astonishing. My soul overflows with joy, my eyes with tears of pleasure, while I transcribe it. When this Sun of righteousness arose with healing under its wings, the disinterested populace, who lay all neglected and forlorn, benighted with ignorance and benumbed with vice, saw the light, and hailed the brightness of his rising. Up they sprang, and after him in multitudes, men, women, and children went. Was he to pass a road, they climbed the trees to see him, yea, the blind sat by the way side to hear him go by. Was he in a house, they unroofed the building to come at him. As if they could never get near enough to hear the soft accents of his voice, they pressed, they crowded, they trod upon one another to surround him. When he retired into the wilderness, they thought him another Moses, and would have made him a king. It was the finest thing they could think of. He, greater than the greatest monarch, despised worldly grandeur ; but to fulfil prophecy, sitting upon a borrowed ass's colt, rode into Jerusalem as the Son of the Highest, and allowed the transported multitude to strew the way with garments and branches, and to arouse the metropolis by acclamations, the very children shouting, “Hosannab, Hosannah in the highest! Hosannah to the Son of David! Blessed be he that cometh in the name of the Lord !"
COMPASSION OF CHRIST How multiform are the miseries of human life. Yonder stands one, waiting for a hand to guide him. The eye is extinguished, and while day smiles on the face of nature, night gathers for ever around his head. There is another, whose ear never drank in a stream of melody- the organ is closed against strains which steal through that avenue into the heart of his neighbours—he never heard the sweet music of speech, nor perceived the tones of his own unformed, untuned, unmodulated voice. Here is a third, who appears before me without the power of utterance—the string of the tongue was never loosed, and he never spake; the organs of speech are deranged, or were never perfectly formed-he hears tones which vibrate on his heart, but he cannot impart, through the same medium, the same pleasurable sensation. These could not escape the compassionate eye of Jesus. He gives sight to the blind, hearing to the deaf, speech to the dumb, limbs to the maimed, health to the sick, strength to decrepitude.
But yonder is the chamber of death, and darker is the cloud that broods there—where the tongue was silent, the eye was eloquent—when the palsied limbs refuse to move, the ear heard, and discriminated sounds, which melt the passions, and stir the spirit within us; it was sad to tend the couch of sickness—but still we seemed to have some hold upon the sufferer, and he to have some interest in life. But that is the bed of mortality, and the young, the beautiful, the only hope of her family is stretched there and there is Jesus also rousing her from death, as from a gentle slumber, and re
storing her to the arms of her parents. There is yet another class of suffering worse than death. It glares in the eye, it raves in the voice, struggles in the limbs of that man, whose throne of reason imagination has usurped, and over the whole empire of whose mind madness reigns in all its accumulated horrors : visions, horrible visions of unreal and inconceivable objects, float before his disordered senses, while he hears not, he distinguishes not, he regards not, the voice of parent, or of wife, or of child, or of friend. The spirit sits surrounded by the ruins of nature, terrified amidst shattered and useless, or perverted organs, and covered with the midnight of despair. Oh! let the compassionate eye of the Saviour fix upon that object; and it does
--he meets him coming from among the tombs, he speaks the word, he calms the tempest-behold, the man sitting at his feet, clothed, and in his right mind. He gave reason and understanding to the distracted, and releases from the power of Satan those who were possessed by him. Collyer.
MIRACLES OF CHRIST. We see but little into the true worth and importance of the miracles of Jesus, if we look no further than the historic facts. These indeed speak aloud the glory of the Divine person to the carnal sense of man, but the grandeur of these works consisted in this, that they were only outward testimonies of the far more noble operations of his grace within the soul, which were not to endure for a time only, like their outward signs, but to flourish throughout eternity. He gave sight to the blind, that he might testify unto men his sovereign power in
giving light and understanding to the mind; he opened the deaf ear, that men might know by whom alone they can hear aright the good news of salvation, and live for ever; the lame he caused in a moment to walk, that his people might learn that they can only move as well as live by him, and that without him they can do nothing ; he cured the foul leprosy of the body, in order to show that only by him can be healed the far more deplorable leprosy of sin, which covers and defiles the mind : all sickness vanished at his command, that we might have hope in him as the sure restorer of our souls; the poor or meek among men were made rich for eternity, the hungry multitudes were fed by his miraculous power, to explain this great truth, that he is not only the giver of spiritual life, but the constant sustainer and nourisher of it from day to day; the winds and waves were instantly obedient to his word, that his people might rejoice in him, as the stiller of all spiritual waves, the tumultuous madness of this world, the raging of Satan, and the confusion of all things; the dead were raised, to proclaim his rising power, and to declare that the issues also of spiritual life, and of endless death, are altogether in his hands; whatever he did was an act of mercy, under which he revealed, as in a parable, the most important lessons of grace and love; and the divinity of his works proclaim him to be the Creator, the Redeemer, and Restorer of millions that were lost. Serle.
And yet he kneels—and yet he seems to be