Luke 8:49

Trouble not the Master. This ruler of the synagogue showed a commendable desire not to give useless trouble to the Prophet of Nazareth; he could not expect that his power would extend so far as to raise the dead, and he wished to save him fruitless trouble. Equally creditable was the behaviour of the centurion whose action is recorded in a previous chapter (Luke 7:6). He felt that the Lord could accomplish in the distance the object of his perhaps toilsome journey, and he sent to say, "Trouble not thyself: for I am not worthy that thou shouldest enter under my roof." It was right that, by considerate kindness, the Son of man should be saved all that those who loved and honoured him could save him from. And the same is true enough to-day of the Son of God. There are -

I. WISE AND RIGHT SOLICITUDES CONCERNING HIM. We are bound to refrain most carefully and conscientiously from troubling the Master by:

1. Doing in his name that which he would disown; e.g. carrying on a cruel, though it may be a refined, persecution of those who "follow not with us" in the mode of our worship, or the method of our Christian work.

2. Asking his blessing on that which he disapproves; e.g. on the war which is an unrighteous one, on the cause which is an unsound one, on the business which is not conducted on principles he can acknowledge as his own.

3. Misrepresenting him by the spirit which we manifest; instead of breathing the spirit of graciousness and self-sacrifice toward those who are weaker or younger or less cultured or less privileged than ourselves, adopting a tone of haughty superiority, or doing that which "causes them to offend."

4. Failing to approach him in prayer, to seek his aid and his influence, to apply for his redeeming touch. Christ may be much troubled by our distance and neglect; he is not likely to be burdened by our earnest approaches and appeals.


1. Inviting him to stay too long with us. The centurion, modestly and properly enough, felt that he was not worthy that Christ should come under his roof. We may feel that also, and especially that we are not worthy that he should make our hearts his home, as he has promised us. But we must not refrain from inviting him to come and to stay with us. We must ask him earnestly to "abide with us from morn till eve," not "to sojourn, but abide with us." He will not count that a trouble; he will honour our faith and appreciate our welcome. "Abide in me, and I [will abide] in you."

2. Going to him too often. He places no limit on our spiritual approach to him. He says ever to us, "Come unto me;" "Draw nigh unto me;" "Seek ye my face?' We shall not burden him by our fellowship; we may grieve him by our absence and by our preference of the society of those who are his enemies.

3. Asking too much of him - either for ourselves or for others. There is no magnitude or multitude of sins we may not ask him to forgive; no depth of evil we may not ask him to eradicate; no severity of disease we may not ask him to undertake. The maiden may be dead (text), the cause may be very low, the heart may be very cold, the character may be very corrupt, the life may be very base, the case may seem very hopeless; but do not shrink from "troubling the Master;" his touch "has still its ancient power;" to the lifeless form he can say, "Arise!" and into the cause that seems wholly gone, and the soul that seems utterly lost, he can infuse newness of life.

4. Doing too much in his cause for him to watch and bless. The more often we ask him to crown our holy labours with his energizing touch, the better we shall please his yearning and loving spirit. - C.

Thy daughter is dead
Now the great grounds of Christian comfort in times of bereavement are two. One relates to those you have lost; the other relates to yourselves. The first is, that those who have died in Christ have made a blessed and happy change in leaving this world for that where they are now. And the second is, that if you and they be both united to Christ, you have the confident assurance that you shall meet again. And, indeed, brethren, when we think of the first of these, we are constrained to feel and lament our want of faith. No truth can be plainer than that heaven is better than earth — a hundred things go to prove that; but it is only now and then that we are lifted up to a height of spiritual insight and fervour in which we truly feel that it is so. Strong convictions, large but vague, are often indicated by little things; just as floating straws show the direction of a great wind. And there is one little peculiarity in our common way of speaking which shows our natural unbelief in the grand Christian doctrine, that to the believer " to die is gain." Speaking even of friends who, we most firmly believe, have fallen asleep in Jesus, you know we habitually speak of them as though they were objects of pity; we speak of our poor friend, our poor sister, our poor little child, that died. This is, doubtless, a manifestation of that curious in. consistency with which, I have already said, we think of the departed. Surely we should rather say "blessed", "happy"; for have they not gone from this world of sin and sorrow and anxiety into the land of holiness, peace, and rest? But there is another reason why we should not mourn unduly for the dead who die in the Lord, one that touches us who remain more nearly. It is this, that we hope to meet them again; we know that if our own death be that of the righteous, we shall certainly meet them again: They have left you in this world, and you will miss their kind advice, and their warm affection, and their earnest prayers; but death can neither drown remembrance nor quench love; and they are remembering you and waiting for you, and theirs will be the first voices to welcome you entering the golden city. Now, let me remind you, in concluding, that all this strong consolation belongs only to such as have believed in Christ, and as mourn the loss of Christian friends. And the two practical lessons from this thought are, that if we would not have death part us eternally from those dear to us, we ought first to make our own calling sure by God's grace, that we may not on the judgment day see them on the right hand of the throne, and ourselves cast out to perdition; and next, that we should care for the souls of those dear to us as well as for our own, lest upon that great day any such should accuse us of that neglect which ended in everlasting separation, saying that if we had warned them as we ought, they had not come to this end of woe! Do you sometimes think, as you sit by the warm winter-evening fireside, and hear the keen blast shake the windows, and howl mournfully through the leafless boughs, and as you look round on the cheerful scene within, with its warm light and its blazing fire, do you some. times think then how, out in the dark of the winter night, the snow lies white or the rain plashes heavy above some dear one's grave; how the sharp blasts roar round the headstone that marks where such a one sleeps — sleeps cold, and motionless, and alone; and does it seem to you a hard thing and a sad thing that in that dreary melancholy of the grave the departed one of the family must lie and slumber, while the fire is blazing bright on the hearth of the old home, till it seems to you a natural thing to weep for the dead, condemned to that cold negation of all that is bright and cheering? And do you sometimes think, in the long beautiful twilights of summer — summer, with its green grass and its bright flowers — that surely it is a loss to those that are gone that they cannot see the softened evening light, nor breath the gentle air? but that in their cold and narrow bed they still must rest and moulder, knowing nothing of the sweet scenes that surround them; not seeing the daisies in the sunshine over them, nor feeling the soft breeze sighing through the grass that lies upon their breast? If you do these things, then remember that it is not the dead you loved that moulder in that grave; it is but the cast-off robe, the shattered cottage of clay, that is turning there to the dust; it is the weak fancy of erring humanity to dream that what in our friends we loved has part or portion there. Remember that dwelling above, in light and glory, they never miss the warmth of the winter evening fireside, or the calm of the evening in June.

(A. H. K. Boyd)

I. DEATH AND LIFE ARE TERMS WHICH HAVE A SPIRITUAL AS WELL AS A PHYSICAL MEANING. A dead man physically is not always truly dead, and a live man physically is not always truly alive. The first occasion on which the ominous words — life and death — were used ought to teach us the mystery hidden in these terms. In the Garden of Eden there was the tree of life, which could not be merely physical life, since Adam was alive before and after he had access to that tree. And there again was another tree, with which the sentence was coupled, "The day thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die." Of that tree Adam ate, and so died — although physically he continued to live for nine hundred and thirty years. No one can have failed to notice how decidedly our Lord corrects the earthly, carnal, and limited ideas of the Jews in reference to the great mysteries of life and death. How often He used words which were beyond, aside from, and even against the common mode of speaking; not, surely, for the sake of singularity, but in order that he might recall and affirm the whole truth. When, e.g., people were indulging in loud and formal lamentation over the death of the ruler's daughter — as if she were literally lost for ever — as if her death were death in the fullest sense — as if the separation of her soul and body were the saddest event which could befall her or her family; when our Master saw through, not only the obtrusive formality of this loud grief, but penetrated the false notions on which rested the deep grief of her parents and those who sincerely lamented with them, He bade them know that their lamentations were out of place, for that she was not dead, but asleep. And when they who were wailing for her laughed Him to scorn; and when they, too, who wept for real sorrow, were incredulous — He demonstrated the truth of His assertion, for "He took her by the hand, and the maid arose."

II. DEATH, IN ITS POPULAR MEANING, IS BEST EXPRESSED BY THE TERM SLEEP. in giving to the separation of soul and body the title "sleep," Christ has disclosed to us the true doctrine of the resurrection of the body, together with a warning, and comfort, which must not pass without distinct notice.

1. The doctrine. The exact phraseology of the Creed teaches us with authority the evangelical truth that we shall rise again; but the lesson can be also learned in the fact that the body of the Jewish maiden — when deprived of the soul — slept. They who sleep, awake again; if the dead body be not dead, but asleep, that is to say, if the term "sleep" be the most accurate one which He who gave us speech could single out, to describe the fact of physical death, then no dogmatic statement, no decree of council, could more clearly affirm the fact of the resurrection of the body.

2. The warning. There is no power in sleep to change one's moral character; as we lie down, we rise up again when awake. Again, in sleep, though the body be motionless, the spirit is active. There are dreams that trouble, as well as those that please.

3. The comfort. Is it no comfort to be told that the friend you thought to be dead only sleeps? Is it not a perfect protection against over-much sorrow to receive the great mystery set forth here? There was a time when Christians took great consolation from this very truth, when it made them ready to die, and resigned to see those near them die at the call of God. Go look at the catacombs of Rome, and see in the records which those faithful caverns have preserved of the creed and life of our Christian fore-fathers — how the early Christians thought of death. The inscriptions are full of faith. Hero a mother "sleeps in Jesus" — there a child "sleeps in Jesus" husband, wife, and friend — they all "sleep" — there is no sign of death in the catacombs. Our martyred forefathers of the early Church may teach us how to live, to die, to bury, and to mourn for our dead. Our Master teaches us in the text that we are not to sorrow for the sainted dead as those who have no hope. They "sleep." They shall rise.

(Bishop W. H. Odenheimer.)

I. That sometimes while dealing with the Saviour the storm becomes darker than before. We cry for pardon, and feel a growing sense of guilt. We pray for sanctification, and the power of corruption seems to revive. We hope for deliverance, and our difficulties multiply.

II. Let us never deem importunity in prayer troublesome.

III. It is never too late to apply to the Lord.

IV. The way to obtain present ease, and certain relief, is to exercise faith under every discouragement. How well are "Fear not" and "Believe only" coupled together! Our Saviour could have healed the child at a distance, and with a word; but He chooses to go "to the house of mourning" — to teach us to go there. A family in such a condition is a very affecting and improving object. We melt into pity as we see the emblems of death. The world loses its hold of our minds. "Weep not: she is not dead, but sleepeth."

1. He spake modestly. Another would have said, "Come; examine this patient; see, there are no remains of life in her — you will witness, before I begin, that there is nothing to aid my operations." But He would not magnify the action He was going to perform. He sought not His own glory.

2. He spake figuratively. Sleep is the term commonly, in the Scripture, applied to the death of all believers; and it is peculiarly just. Sleep is the pause of care — the parenthesis of human woe.

3. He spake in reference to His present intention. Instead of a burial she was going to be raised to life.

4. He said this also to try His hearers. Accordingly, it showed their disposition. Here we are led to note two things. First: How much more are men governed by their natural views and feelings than by the word of truth; and how easily are they befooled in Divine things by their sense and reason! Secondly: We observe that a serious state of mind is the best preparation for Divine truth. "A scorner," says Solomon, "seeketh knowledge, and findeth it not." After they had made a declaration, which they could not retract, concerning the certainty of her death, "He put them all out"; and, as the Resurrection and the Life, lie "took her by the hand, and called, saying, Maid, arise," when, lo! the fountain of life is warmed, the blood begins to liquefy and flow, the pulse beats again; she breathes; she looks — "her spirit came again, and she arose straightway: and He commanded to give her meat."This order was to show —

1. The reality of the miracle, by the use of her faculties.

2. It evinced the perfection of the miracle: she was not restored to the state in which she died — that was a state of sickness, in which food was rejected; but to the state she was in before her disease — a state of health and appetite.

3. It was also to mark the limitation of the miracle: nothing further was to be done preternaturally; but her life, which had been restored by extraordinary agency, was to be preserved, as before, by ordinary means. It also distinguished this miracle from that of the final resurrection. The resurrection will produce a spiritual body, requiring neither sleep nor food; but this damsel was raised only to a natural life, subject to the same infirmities as that of other people, and liable to die again.Let us conclude.

1. If our Saviour so amazed the spectators, and honoured Himself, by the revival of one body newly dead, what will it be when He shall come to be glorified in His saints, and to be admired in all them that believe; when He shall speak, and "all that are in the graves shall hear His voice, and shall come forth — they that have done good unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil unto the resurrection of damnation"! Again: It is worthy of remark that of the three persons whom our Lord raised from the dead, Lazarus was the loved and only brother of Martha and Mary; the young man was the only son of his mother; and the damsel the only daughter of Jairus: so touched is He with the feeling of our infirmities; so much regard does He show to relative affection.

(W. Jay.)

I. In the text we perceive A DEEP SORROW EXPRESSED "They all wept and bewailed her." But, as we have said, where a bereaving providence is felt, the genuine expressions of sorrow will not be wanting, nor are they out of place.

1. This is natural.

2. To weep and bewail the loss of beloved relatives and friends is also consistent and affectionate.

II. To THE CONSOLATORY IDEA OUR TEXT COMMUNICATES — "Weep not; she is not dead, but sleepeth." Many believers, through fear of death, are all their lives subject to bondage; but the consoling representation of our text strips it of all its terrors, for, surely, if we sleep, we do well.

1. Now the spirit is unconfined.

2. This is a consoling idea, because in sleep bodily labour is suspended.

3. The idea in the text is consoling, because our sleeping friends will awake again.


1. We may learn the necessity of faith in the Redeemer. Every spiritual blessing is promised alone to those who believe in the Saviour.

2. Our subject to-day teaches us the folly of an inordinate fear of death.

3. Once more, our subject reminds us of the duty of daily preparation for our approaching change.

(T. Gibson, M. A.)

First, character; secondly, comparison; and, thirdly, conclusion.

I. We shall speak upon CHARACTER. It is entirely through the death and the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ that the death of the believer receives and presents so mild, so peaceful, so softened a character as sleep.

II. We shall now consider the comparison in the text, or the several striking resemblances between death and sleep, and how they beautifully describe the condition of departed saints; and —

1. Sleep is exclusively applicable to the body, it does not appertain to the spirit; often while the body sleeps, the soul is conscious, and busily active in dreams of the most astonishing character.

2. Death and sleep have a marked resemblance. Sleep is certainly a type of death. Ovid, the Roman poet, said, "O fool, what is sleep but the image of cold death?"

3. Death, under the figure of sleep, represents a state of rest, a state of sweet repose.

4. Sleep is useful, is most profitable to the body. By sleep the powers of the body are strengthened, and refreshed, and fitted for the labours of the future day.

5. Sleep is absolutely essential. Who could live for any protracted period without sleep?

6. Sleep delightfully illustrates the prospect of restoration. We expect at lying down to rest to-night, to awake and to arise to-morrow morning.

III. We proceed to the CONCLUSION, or the inferences which the living should draw from the state of the dead, and especially the happy dead.

1. Are you yet unrenewed, unchanged by the Spirit of God?

2. Are you the children of a spiritual resurrection, passed from death to life, translated out of darkness into amazing light? — while we live here, let us live.

3. Let us act as believers in parting with believing friends.

(T. Sharp, M. A.)

Subject: the delay of Christ in going to the house of Jairus, and allowing the child to die before He reached there.





1. If we really feel our need of Christ we shall not mind how, when, or where, we seek Him.

2. Christ could not take a walk without doing good and being sympathetically ready to do it.

3. Christ never felt any call amiss to Him.

4. This miracle teaches that Christ can love the youngest.

5. We cannot do better than closely imitate the manner, spirit, and method of Christ's working.

(R. H. Lovell.)

When the title which is here translated "Master" was in common use, it meant the master of a school. Using the word in its English sense, every man is more or less, in relation to one thing or another, a master; but in Christ alone does the term find its full and perfect realization.


II. VIEW THESE WORDS AS ILLUSTRATED IN THE HISTORY OF OUR OWN EXPERIENCE. "Trouble not the Master," cries the specious philosopher, the mocking secularist, the trivial worldling. Unbelief, Pride, Despondency, Indolence, all say, "Trouble not the Master." Test some of these objections.

1. "Trouble not the Master," for there is no real power in prayer.

2. For the help you ask is too great for Him to render.

3. For the help you ask for relates to matters too insignificant for His dignity to notice.

4. For you have no assurance of His love.

5. For this is not the right time for your supplication.Be deaf to every voice that bids you "trouble not the Master," and listen to the voice from heaven that is for ever saying, " Ye that make mention of the Lord, keep not silence, give Him no rest, till He establish, and till He make Jerusalem a praise in all the earth."

(C. Stanford, D. D.)

Fear not, only believe.
This encouraging direction was spoken by Christ to a man in the very crisis of his acutest agony, and was so efficacious in its influence that it lifted its recipient at once to the highest rank among the heroes of a victorious and manly faith, the faith that(1) is persistent and triumphant in its contest with difficulties in the gravest perils of human experience;(2) Opens, and keeps open, the nature for evermore to the highest, holiest, and helpfullest; and(3) Eagerly avails itself of all contemporary life-interpreting facts.

I. "Only believe." Yes, "only," but what an only! Put yourself in this man's position. "Only believe," meant for Jairus attempting the hardest task mortal man ever engaged in.

II. Short as this sentence is, it is an ellipsis, and on the way in which it is completed depend the chances of our gaining a true conception of what a manly faith is, not less than a clear notion of this ruler's act. Only believe — what? whom? Oh! if "only" some of our teachers would take the trouble to think this clause out to its fullest significance, the passage would cease to be a miserable fetish, and become a spiritual power. What was this ruler's faith? A correct idea? Yea, verily, for faith without knowledge is superstition. A feeling? Most surely. A tender regard for the Saviour glows in the scene, and faith works by love, and inspires courage never to submit or yield. Obedience? Yes I every step he took alongside of Christ revealed it. But was this all? Knowledge, love, obedience? No! The act is complex. Go to its roots, and you cannot set it out in a short phrase, or dispatch it in a definition. It is vital, like life; and like life, indefinable. It is an opening of the entire nature, in all its powers and faculties, to Christ, to receive of His energies, so that Christ is flowing into him, healing and strengthening him, and sustaining him as he journeys along, and finally giving him a complete victory over himself and his painful and distressing lot.

III. But it must not be forgotten that this quickening and stimulating counsel was enforced by an actual and positive fact, illustrative of that very heroism — of faith to which this perplexed and agitated man was encouraged. The direction is set in a background that brilliantly illumines and enforces it; for I cannot avoid thinking that the dangerous delay in reaching the poor man's home, and the obvious determination of Christ to bring the tired and trembling woman to the front, and to compel the confession of her sad and lengthened illness, and of her speedy cure, was meant to encourage this believer in his difficult task. There is always close to us the human fact interpreting and enforcing the Divine direction, if only we have eyes to see and ears to hear the message of our Lord. God never gives us words alone.

IV. Let me ask you to take this direction and apply it to yourselves as this man took it. Cling to Christ, the truth, hold fast the gentle and healing hand of Christ.

(J. Clifford, D. D.)

— Let me speak of the spirit and work of Christ in the home of a sick child.

1. By the death of little children the unity of home life is broken up.

2. There is something which we call unnatural in this manner of death.

3. The bereavement of children is a bereavement that so often never seems to be fully repaired till the bereavement shall be over, and the separated have met again face to face.

4. There is for us, however, over their tiny graves, a glorious "nevertheless." We can enter into the joy of the word of the Lord that assures us that our loved children, numbered among the dead, are yet not dead, but only sleeping.(1) It is a great blessing which God confers on a home when its inmates can say: "Part of our family is in heaven."(2) Those who form this part so perfectly blessed are for ever safe from all moral dangers and ills.(3) And this because they are ever pure, without fault before the throne of God.

(T. Gasquoine, B. A.)

"She is not dead." This He said of all our children we have seen lying thus. Christ here reveals to us, as truth, what the poets of all ages have been telling the world. Our children are not lost. They sleep. The burden has been too much, the road too broken, the light too dim for their eyes.

(E. Aston)

I. The words of the messenger (ver. 49) may serve to REMIND US OF THE LIMITS WHICH ORDINARILY OUR UNBELIEF SETS TO OUR FAITH. "While there's life there is hope," we are accustomed to say. But "if in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable." Christ has the same power over death now as He had when on earth. The difference between His treatment of death now, and His treatment of it then, is not in kind — it is only in circumstance and scene. Cling to the belief that Christ has abolished death, and brought life and immortality to light, and that one day your loved ones shall be restored to you and you to them, and, when set over against the consolation which that belief has power to yield, the question of the time when will come to matter less and less to you.

II. Looking at the text itself we find in it —

1. That when Christ reached the house of Jairus the relatives and neighbours who had assembled in the deathchamber, were, according to Eastern custom, bitterly weeping and loudly bewailing the loss which had just befallen the family; and —

2. That He bade them cease their mourning. WHY, THEN, DID CHRIST SAY TO THEM "WEEP NOT"? Surely their grief was pardonable and even fitting. Surely it would have argued the possession of a callous heart and an unsympathetic nature if they had been unmoved in that house of mourning that day. It seems to me that we must invest these words in the mouth of Christ with the tenderest look and the most sympathetic tone, and that we must regard them not as condemnatory of a grief that was natural, but as gentle chiding of sorrow that was hopeless, and therefore unbelieving,

"Weep not for them! it is no cause of sorrow

That theirs was no long pathway to the tomb;

They had one bright to-day, no sad to-morrow

Rising in hope, and darkening into gloom.

Weep not for them! give tears unto the living;

O waste no vain regret on lot like theirs!

But rather make it reason for thanksgiving

That ye have cherished angels unawares."

III. THE REASON WHICH CHRIST GAVE WHY THEY WERE NOT TO WEEP. "She is not dead." And yet the very next verse tells us that they all knew very well that she was dead. How came Christ then to deny a fact so patent to all? It was because He set His face and "the whole weight of His thought and speech " against the merely natural and temporal views of men as to what death is — "The illuminating significance of the fact of Christ's indisposition to use the word death."

IV. We have seen that Jesus said, and why He said, that the daughter of Jairus was not dead. How, then, does He explain the wondrous and awful change which has come ever her visible form? HE SAYS THAT SHE IS SLEEPING. Perhaps never was a time, since men began to seek out the analogies in things, when they did not see and speak of the striking similarity between Death and his twin-brother Sleep. But is this fact enough to account for Christ's use of the similitude? I think not. "If Christ had done nothing more for humanity," says Munger, than give to it this word "sleep" in place of "death," He Would have been the greatest of benefactors. To that which seems the worst thing, He has given the best name, and the name is true. It is a great thing that we are able to take that almost sweetest and most soothing word in our tongue — sleep — and give it unto death: sleep that ends our cares and relieves us of our toils, that begins in weariness and ends in strength.', Out of sleep there is awakening, and the light of the eternal morning gladdens the vision of all who fall asleep in Christ.

(J. R. Bailey.)

Very tender is the word in which Jesus addresses the dead child, as if she were still living. St. Mark alone records the original Aramaic expression, "Talitha cumi," which had doubtless been indelibly impressed upon the memory of St. Peter, from whom St. Mark, who was his special friend and companion, must have obtained it. And the original expression is recorded, because it cannot be translated without losing much of its charm and significance. It contains a term of endearment derived from a Syrian word signifying "lamb," often applied by fond parents to their children. It is as if the Good Shepherd had said, in bringing back in His bosom to the fold of the living this lost lamb that had wandered into the land of forgetfulness, "My little lamb, I say unto thee, arise." By the word of love and the touch of power, the spirit is re-called from the everlasting spring, and the hills of myrrh, to the forsaken tabernacle. The wave of life rushes back to the quiet heart, the pulse is set beating anew; a warm glow diffuses itself through the frame and mantles on the cheeks and lips. She rises from the couch as from a profound dreamless sleep, in mute astonishment at the strange scene around her, all the feebleness of her illness gone. The sun of her life- as happens in the natural world on the borders of the Arctic regions in summer — just dipped below the horizon for a little, and then rose again; and dawn and sunset shone in the same sky.

(H. Macmillan, LL. D.)The Saviour raised Her hand from off her bosom, and spread out The snowy fingers in His palm, and said, "Maiden! Arise!" — and suddenly a flush Shot o'er her forehead, and along her lips And through her cheek the rallied colour ran; And the still outline of her graceful form Stirr'd in the linen vesture; and she clasp'd The Saviour's hand, and fixing her dark eyes Full on His beaming countenance — arose.

(N. P. Willis.)

The command of Jesus to give the restored child meat was intended, we may suppose, to serve several purposes: to supply(1) a physical want, and in so doing to give clear, unmistakable proof of the reality of fine life restored to perfect health;(2) to calm the apprehensions and the great astonishment of the parents; and(3) to show that the course of nature, though violently interrupted for once, must be resumed according to the usual order. Jesus descended from the region of the supernatural to the region of ordinary life, from the working of a miracle to the satisfying of a commonplace want. And by that circumstance He teaches us the important lesson, that the spiritual life which He has imparted by Divine power must be sustained by human means.

(H. Macmillan, LL. D.)

It would seem that the Romans had even an aversion to mention death in express terms, for they disguised its very name by some periphrasis such as, Discessit e vita — "He has departed from life"; and they did not say their friend had died, but that he had lived — vixit! Even among a people less refined the obtrusive idea of death has been studiously avoided. We are told that when the Emperor of Morocco inquires after any one who has recently died, it is against etiquette to mention the word " death"; the answer is, "His destiny is closed."

(I. D'Israeli.)

A delicate child, pale and prematurely wise, was complaining on a hot morning that the poor dew-drops had been too hastily snatched away, and had not been allowed to glitter on the flowers like other happier dew-drops, that live the whole night through and sparkle through the moonlight, and through the morning onwards to noon-day. "The sun," said the child, "has chased them away with his heat, or has swallowed them up in his wrath." Soon after came rain, and a rainbow; whereupon his father pointed upwards. "See," said he, "there stand the dew-drops gloriously re-set — a glittering jewelry — in the heavens; and the clownish foot tramples on them no more. By this, my child, thou art taught that what withers on earth blooms again in heaven." Thus the father spoke, and knew not that he spake prophetic words; for soon after the delicate child, with the morning brightness of his early wisdom, was exhaled, like a dew-drop, into heaven.

(Jean Paul Richter.)

Christian parents have a rich inheritance in the memories of their sainted children, and in the living treasures laid up in heaven. "Years ago," says Dr. W. M. Taylor, "when I was leaving my Liverpool home to fulfil an engagement in the city of Glasgow, the last sight on which my eyes rested was that of my little daughter at the window in her grandmother's arms. As the carriage drove me away, she waved her hand in fond and laughing glee, and many a time during my railway ride the pleasant vision came up before my memory, and filled my heart with joy. I never saw her again l The next morning a telegram stunned me with the tidings of her death; and now that earthly glimpse of her has been idealized and glorified, and it seems to me as if God had set her in the window of heaven to beckon me upward to my eternal home. I would not give that memory for all the gold on earth. I would not part with the inspiration that it stirs within me for all that the world could bestow."

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