And as they went to tell his disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, All hail. And they came and held him by the feet…
It is not supposed that the impartial Christ, or the Christianity of His gospel, literally prefers one sex to the other. But He respects the nature of each, and does not abrogate the laws of that nature. To that one, therefore, that has the clearer spiritual eyesight, Christ will disclose the first radiancy of His glory. In that sex that loves most, and therefore, suffers most, and is perhaps capable of sinning most, He finds the faith-faculty most ready to recognize Him, and on that, therefore — as if in a kind of compensation for the first sin, and the tender sensitiveness to all injury — He bestows the blessing of the earliest benediction of His resurrection voice. The general distinction thus drawn between the sexes reappears, in its measure, between individuals of each of the two; and there is thus a similar advance of clearness in the other succeeding manifestations. The circle gradually enlarges from the solitary Mary to a great company of men as they are gradually prepared to see and believe.
I. This is the certification afforded by our Saviour's resurrection TO THE FACT OF HIS DIVINITY. "They came and held Him by the feet and worshipped Him." They worshipped, and He did not check it. Was He not the one that teaches of what their worship is? The resurrection had transfigured, and as it were had divinized all his mortal signs. It had never been heard before that a man lifted himself, by his own will, out of the grave, and asserted his superiority to all the forces of destruction. Surely here must be nothing less than the Creator's majesty. In the glorified form the " Son of God" stood revealed not less than the " Son of Man." They worshipped Him. Place beside this truth another. These faithful believers were not believers in a one-sided or ultra-spiritualism — "They held Him by the feet, and worshipped Him." Here were two signs of a living faith, the touch and the bended knees. Both were welcome to Him who knows every secret spring of the soul's strength, and who replaces the dead formalism of the Law with the vital forms of a spiritual kingdom. Again, a supreme value is set here, for the Christian life, on the Saviour's personal presence. To the Church for eighteen hundred years it has been spiritual, not corporeal, yet literal and real. Men of action and thought, if you do not feel anything real about this I know not how to reason with you about it. We can only tell you what we have seen or felt. Those institutions and movements in the world, however active and religious, seem to have no permanent life in them, which are without this living conscious connection with the person and presence of Christ, so as to draw their constant supplies of power from Him. They seem like streams, however full, which run from a cistern and not from the fountain in the hills. He does not say to them "All hail." I am sure that Christ is with me and has for me all the power and love I need; He lives greatly in me and for me. As it was then, so now; they who are spiritually best prepared by affliction, earnestness, sympathy, with the spirit of His life and laws, and by love for Him, have the clearest and earliest disclosures of His Deified presence.
Parallel VersesKJV: And as they went to tell his disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, All hail. And they came and held him by the feet, and worshipped him.