Two things occurred together in attempting the last service to the buried Christ - weak, though willing and loving instruments, and a practically insurmountable difficulty. They themselves were unable to roll away the stone which closed the sepulcher, "for it was exceeding great." This experience has often been repeated.
I. HOW FOREBODINGS OF DIFFICULTY IN CHRISTIAN SERVICE OFTEN ARISE.
1. By discounting the help of Christ. They thought him dead and helpless.
2. By calculating only one's own resources. Looking inward. The healthy outward and upward look at the indications of Providence and experience.
II. HOW THE GOOD INTENTION OF LOVING HEARTS IS REWARDED BY THE SAVIOUR.
1. By finding the difficulty which had been anticipated already removed.
2. By finding the intended service rendered unnecessary. The empty grave at first a disappointment, but afterwards a source of joy. - M.
Who shall roll us away the stone?
So said the women who came to see Christ, who had died upon the cross. Are they the last who have had the like fears on a like occasion? Has not every Christian who has set himself in earnest to the work of following Christ in His death been alarmed at an equal difficulty? Are not many frightened at the very outset of their course?
I. THE STONE AT THE DOOR. Surely no one who understands anything of the nature of his Christian profession expects to maintain it without trial of his strength; he that seeks Christ crucified and dead for sin, sees that he has first of all to roll away the stone from the sepulchre. This exclamation of the women is continually the cry of our weak nature, of the old man within us who is of little faith, and sees not that the finger of God is stronger than the arm of man. And to our natural weakness the devil adds his wiles to add to our perplexities.
1. To seek Christ as dead for our sins is to resolve to forsake them, and to follow Him to His sepulchre with ""he earnest desire and full determination of crucifying some sinful affection and resisting some evil inclination or purpose.
2. When a man begins to attempt this a struggle ensues, and he discovers his own weakness. Every sin, every infirmity; pleads to be heard before it be turned off from his service. Who demands from you such a surrender of your former habits? Are you to live a life of continual struggle? Is watching unto righteousness as pleasant as sleeping in sin? Is swimming against the flood of ungodliness as easy as swimming with it? Is a distant prize, which you may miss, to be preferred to one at hand which is certain? So says the law of sin, and thus, with all his desire to follow Christ unto His death and burial, he is at the same time tempted with a number of hindrances which seem effectually to block up the way, and if he feels the spirit to be willing, he also feels the flesh to be weak. He begins to despair of strength to remove them, and asks in his despondency, "Who shall roll me away the stone from the door of the sepulchre, that I may see and find Christ crucified for me?"
II. THE STONE ROLLED AWAY.
1. As the women who uttered these words had no sooner spoken them than they saw that the stone was already rolled away, so it befalls everyone who through the sincere purpose of the death unto sin, seeks Christ crucified. Those hindrances, which his weak unassisted nature never could so much as hope to remove, are rolled away by the arm of the power of God. If he feels the power of the death of his Saviour, he feels also the glorious power of His resurrection; he is enabled by the grace of God to overcome all the hindrances and stones of offence which before seemed so great and difficult of removal.
2. Many there are who would rather forsake a course of carelessness and forgetfulness of God; they see its folly and unreasonableness; they perceive in what it must end; but they have not the resolution to free themselves. They no sooner see the sepulchre of Christ, and the spot where they must become partakers in His death by dying to their besetting sin, than they give up the trial, crying out that the thing is impossible. But this would not be so if they accompanied hearty prayer to the Lord with hearty endeavours at removing the hindrances from the way. Let them begin to practise with the lighter ones, with overcoming, e.g., the habit of frivolous excuses, which is so general an obstacle to a consistent course. When a man has once overcome one ever so frivolous, he is prepared for overcoming one more serious. And when he has overcome it, he is quite astonished and ashamed that he should ever for a moment have yielded to it. He is thenceforward convinced that all the rest are not at all more serious and substantial, and goes to work with them, with the strong hand of a just indignation at having been so be-fooled and periled by them; and thus, under the grace of God, his faith becomes strong enough to remove mountains.
When the first ironclad vessel was used in naval warfare, the news of its victory sent a panic through the Federal rulers. At a cabinet meeting called on receipt of the news, Mr. Stanton, the Secretary of State, said: "This will change the whole character of the war; she will destroy seriatim every naval vessel; she will lay all the cities on the seaboard under contribution. Port Royal must be abandoned; the governors and authorities must take instant measures to protect their harbours." Looking out of the window, which commanded a view of the Potomac for many miles, he said, "Not unlikely, we shall have a shell or cannonball from one of her guns in the White House before we leave this room." Mr. Seward, usually buoyant and self-reliant, was overwhelmed with the intelligence, and listened in responsive sympathy to Stanton; he was greatly depressed, as, indeed, were all the members.
The trouble we expect scarcely ever comes. How much pain the evils cost us that have never happened!
There is a beautiful tradition among the American Indians that Manaton was travelling in the invisible world, and that he came upon a hedge of thorns, and after a while he saw wild beasts glare upon him from the thicket, and after a while he saw an impassable river; but, as he determined to proceed, and did go on, the thorns turned to phantoms; the wild beasts a powerless ghost; the river, only the phantom of a river. And it is the simple fact of our lives that the vast majority of the obstacles in our way disappear when we march upon them.
Dr. Raleigh used to tell of an old Scotch minister who, when he came to a peculiarly difficult passage of Scripture, would say to his people, "No doubt, my brethren, there is great difficulty here; all the commentators are agreed upon that; so let us look the difficulty boldly in the face, and — pass on!"
It much perplexed these women how they should roll away the tombstone, and so purchase the sight of their beloved Master; but He that has given His angels charge over His children, that they hurt not their foot against a stone, sent a messenger from heaven to roll back that huge stone for them. Even as a loving father, when he carries his little child to the town, will let him alone to walk in the plain and fair way; but, when he comes to slippery paths, he takes him by the hand, and in dirty passages bears him in his arms, and, when he comes to a stile, gently lifts him over; so God, our heavenly Father, uses His dear children. If they endeavour to go as far as they may in the ways of His commandments, so fast as they can in the way to the celestial Jerusalem, He will assist them in danger, and help them over stiles of discouragement; take away all rubs of offence, remove all blocks and hindrances in their passage; and the very great stone parting Christ and them, even while they least think of it, shall be rolled away.
Beneath Westminster Abbey is an old cloister which for centuries was used as the burial place of the early kings. There, in their stone sarcophagi, are the remains of the Saxon sovereigns, some of them over twelve hundred years entombed. It is related that one day, a few years since, a visitor, who had wandered into this vault, was locked in. He did not notice as the door swung together. The janitors were busy. The usual throng of visitors was in the spacious building. No one heard the muffled voice which began to cry from the cloister, or the muffled blows which began to beat upon its oaken door. The afternoon passed away. What that imprisoned man suffered, as it gradually grew upon him that he was buried alive, who can know? At the usual hour the janitor made his evening rounds, before closing the building for the night. The entombed man heard him as his footsteps came near, then retreated, came near again, then, finally receding, grew fainter and fainter, and died away at length in the distance. What imagination can conceive his agony! He redoubled his cries. He shrieked. He dashed himself wildly against the solid door. In vain. Now he thought he heard the distant entrance doors creak on their hinges, and the key pushed into the great iron lock. In a moment more the vast tomb would be closed for the night. Fortunately, before turning the key, the janitor paused a moment and listened. He thought he heard dull blows, faint and far away, a sound as of stifled, agonizing cries. He listened more intently. A horrible thought suggested itself to his mind: "Someone is locked into the cloister." He hastened to the place, threw open the heavy oaken door, and held his lantern up to see. The buried man had fallen senseless upon the stone floor. He was rescued just in time to save his reason. Were it not for the resurrection of Jesus Christ, we men had been like that poor wretch, helplessly and hopelessly beating against the bolted door of a living tomb. Some tell us that Christ came to influence men, to draw us to God, to make an effectual appeal to men by His life and His death to repent and imitate Him. Is this all? we ask. We lay away our friends, and over the coffin and the tomb we say: "Jesus is the Resurrection and the Life." If He is not; if He is dead; then we ask in awe-struck dread: "Who shall roll us away the stone?" Christ came to bring life and immortality to light. What hope could we have if He still lay in His grave? What would this earth then be but the eternal grave and charnel house of the human race?
Some time since we wished to enter a strange church with a minister, a little before the time for service. We procured a key, but tried in vain to unlock the outside door with it. We concluded we had brought the wrong key, so sent to the janitor for the right one. But he came and told us that the door was already unlocked. All we had to do was to push, and the door would open. We thought ourselves locked out, when there was nothing but that mistaken thought to hinder us from entering. In the same way we fail to enter into love and fellowship with God. The door, we think, is locked against us. We try to fit some key of extraordinary faith to open it. We try to get our minds wrought up to some high pitch of feeling. We say, "I have the wrong key; I must feel more sorry; I must weep more." And all the time the door is ready to open. If we but come boldly, with humble earnestness, to the throne of grace, we may enter at once, without having to unlock the door. Christ is the door, and His heart is not shut against us. We must enter without stopping to fit our key of studied faith, for His mercy is not locked up. We must enter boldly, trustingly, not doubting His readiness to receive us just as we are. He is willing already, and we must not stop to make Him willing by our prayers or our tears.
The place where Jesus lay was a dark spot to His disciples. Little did they know that speedily He was to leave that grave, victor over death, and that heaven's rare sunshine should come to that shady place. Yet so it was. Other captains may gather laurels from a hundred fields, their very names may be proverbs of conquest; but when they lie in the narrow house appointed for all living, they cease from fight, and no more conquests are in store for them. Not so was it with the Captain of our salvation. His greatest victory was gained in the grave and over it. Every hour of His life yielded the palm to that in which He rose from death.
I. CHRIST'S RISING WAS TO HIS DISCIPLES THE RESURRECTION OF HOPE.
1. It proved to them the acceptance of His atonement.
2. It was to them a verification of all His claims.
II. CHRIST'S RISING WAS TO HIS DISCIPLES THE RESURRECTION OF COURAGE. What changed men they were after Easter Day! The craven deserters were thereafter bold as lions.
III. CHRIST'S RISING WAS TO HIS DISCIPLES THE RESURRECTION OF RELIGIOUS ACTIVITY. Till He rose, their activities were paralyzed. When He rose, how they began to preach the gospel of the grace of God; and, more than all besides, they preached not Jesus and the cross, but "Jesus and the resurrection" — the empty sepulchre, rather than the uplifted cross.
There are some sepulchres from which we would not desire to roll the stone away. The past has many such sepulchres. In that past there is a sepulchre in which corpses lie — corpses of sinful facts; corpses of broken vows; corpses of old hates; corpses of old loves. Oh! that we could never see them more. Oh! that we could forget their very names.
2. But there is another sepulchre of the past where there do lie some things very sweet, holy, and precious. We long to live these memories over again. We long to walk again, hand in hand, with childlike trust, beside the Galilean lake, or climb the Judean mount with one who lies asleep and has gone into the memory sepulchre. Let us keep our spices ready. When the bitter Sabbath which has followed the sorrowful interment shall have passed, there will be an Easter morn, and as we run sobbing to the sepulchre we shall see the splendours of the face and hear the music of the voice of our risen and immortal Lord.
It is not my work to roll away the stone, but it is my duty to go to the grave. Nay, we will not talk of duty. Love sends me to Jesus, living or dead. My love does that. His love will see that the stone is rolled away.
It is said that love is blind. I do not believe it. Love is full of eyes. The sharp-eyed intellect — that Polyphemus of the brain which has only one eye — may miss many a thing. Even cunning, that carries a calcium lamp, may fail to see many a thing. But love will see all. Love is the highest philosophy. Love is the eyes of faith. Love is the hand of faith. Be not faithless, and then you will not be loveless nor blind.
The facts of our religion are, when rightly appreciated, so many moral forces for the soul, incorporating ideas which give courage and gladness, and containing principles which are at the root of conduct and life. Preeminent among them all is the resurrection. Faith in this is the one and only force that adequately enables us to roll away the stones that encounter us in the struggles of life. What St. Paul calls the "power" of the resurrection is for all of us the mighty secret of a steady triumph over temptation, difficulty, and sorrow.
I. THE RESURRECTION IS A POWER TO HEAL CONSCIENCE. Looking back upon the cross and forward to the ascension, it tells us both of pardon and righteousness.
II. THE RESURRECTION IS A POWER TO ENNOBLE DUTY. In its light life is seen to be worth living, for the stone of a purposeless and brief existence is rolled away, and with its new aims, responsibilities, functions, and motives, this life on earth has a new meaning and force. There is its stupendous responsibility, for some day we shall rise to receive the things done in our body, i.e., their results, whether they be good or bad. There is its universal jurisdiction. For the resurrection of the race, like its inevitable mortality, is generically bound up with the resurrection of its Head (1 Corinthians 15:22). There is its potential grace (Colossians 3:1). There is its majestic consecration (Romans 12:1).
III. THE RESURRECTION IS A POWER TO EXPLAIN DEATH. It shows us that death is not the end of our journey, only a stage in it. Because Christ lives, we shall live also. We have each of us to go down alone to the brink of the river, and to leave behind us all we have ever known and possessed and loved, and to pass into another condition of which we have no kind of experience, and most probably to abandon schemes but half completed, and lessons but scantily learned. Yet in the world to which we go, there will be leisure enough in the great spaces of eternity to mellow and develop in that land which needeth not sun or moon to lighten it, the gems of thought and action which we sowed here.
IV. THE RESURRECTION IS A POWER TO CONSOLE SORROW.
Scipio Africanus besieged a city in Spain well fortified every way, and wanting nothing, and no hope did appear to take it. In the meantime Scipio heard many causes pleaded before him, and put off one before it was ended, to be heard three days after; and, being asked by his officers where he would keep his next court, he pointed to the chief citadel of the besieged city, and told them he would hear the cause there. In that space he became master of the town, and did as he had appointed. He was not more confident to enter into a city fortified against him, by his valour, than these women were to enter by faith into a sepulchre sealed and shut up, but the Lord is present with courageous attempts, and He sent His angel to assist them.
The angel was present on this occasion for —
1. A witness. The empty sepulchre confirmed his words.
2. A preparation. They were soon to see the Lord in His glorious resurrection-body.
3. A pledge. Peace established between heaven and earth. A new and sweet communion opened.
4. A help. They could not have moved the stone without assistance. God always aids those who seek to go onwards in the path of duty. An angel is ever by holy places — thoughts — words — works, leading us upwards to higher gifts.
WHY WAS THERE EVER A SEPULCHRE ON EARTH? A sepulchre tells of sorrow, sickness, bereavement, death. "By one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin."
II. WHY WAS THERE A SEPULCHRE FOR JESUS? To remove all doubt as to the reality of His death.
III. WHY WAS THAT STONE PUT THERE? St. Matthew gives the reason. The very means by which they hoped to prevent the resurrection, were made the occasion of more glorious triumph. Thus did God cause the wrath of man to praise Him, and the plottings of enemies to give the strongest proofs of His resurrection.
IV. WHO ROLLED THAT STONE AWAY AND FOR WHAT PURPOSE? Had the Lord rolled it away it would have been said that He was not dead, but only in a state of trance. We must not weep as if we had no one to roll away the stone from the sepulchre. The grave will hold our bodies but a little while.
We may note some important lessons which this incident teaches.
1. That gloomy forebodings should never prevent us from doing our duty.
2. That those who talk of difficulties, have frequently but little knowledge of the actual state of affairs.
3. That difficulties, as difficulties, are sometimes more imaginary than real.
I. THE FEARS OF AN AWAKENED SINNER. These are represented in the earnest inquiry of the woman. Whence these fears?
1. They may be due to want of thorough knowledge of God's character.
2. That men who are exceedingly anxious in reference to any matter are prone to dwell upon the dark side.Let us look at the different forms which these fears assume.
1. The awaked sinner sometimes doubts the readiness of God to receive him.
2. Fears that he can never lead a godly life.
3. Fears that he will never be ready for heaven.
II. THAT THESE FEARS ARE GROUNDLESS. This is represented in the fact recorded here. Note —
1. That difficulties are oftentimes advantages.
2. Difficulties generally dwindle away as we grapple with them.
3. God has abundantly provided against every difficulty.
Prospective difficulties in the path of duty, persons often find removed when they come to the place of meeting them. This may be inferred —
I. FROM THE EXPERIENCE OF GOD'S PEOPLE. Instance Abraham, Moses, the Israelites in the time of Joshua and Esther, the three Hebrews, Daniel, etc., the apostles and primitive Christians, etc.
II. FROM THE PROMISES OF GOD.
1. The promises of God should not inspire us with a false confidence, blind us to the consequences of our conduct, or render us remiss in endeavours to know the will of God. We may be presumptuous in our reliance on the government and promises of God.
2. God has, in the Scriptures, given assurance of a special providence over those who obey His commands.
3. Professors of religion have suffered much in peace of mind, and in efficiency of Christian character, because, by apparent difficulties in prospect, they have been deterred from going forward in duty, when, had they trusted in God and gone for. ward, they would not have experienced the difficulties anticipated.
4. Where God directs, there go. What God commands, that do.
LOOK MORE CAREFULLY AND MINUTELY AT THE NARRATIVE. Costly were the spices brought by Nicodemus, costlier than they could buy; but the first anointing was hurried, the time before Jewish Sabbath so brief. With women's eyes they saw defects, deplored haste. They would anoint carefully. Love prompted resolution; love is often oblivious of hindrances. They had not thought of the stone which the combined strength of many had rolled into its place.
II. THE NARRATIVE SPEAKS TO US ON THIS EASTER DAY OF —
1. A work of love.(1) Love prompted the purchase of spices; the preparation, the early journey to tomb. Love compelled them with sweet compulsion.(2) Love to Christ has led to greater sacrifices, more toilsome work; e.g., love led St. Paul to give up all things; St. Peter to go to prison and unto death. Motive power of all true work for Christ, love.
2. The cause of that love.(1) Mary Magdalene loved Christ as her Deliverer, Emancipator. Mary the mother of James, and Salome the mother of James and John, loved Him because of what He had been to their sons as well as to themselves.(2) We love Him because He first loved us.
3. The hindrances which seem to be in the way of performing the work of love Many great stones in our way.(1) Our ignorance, incompetency, insufficiency.(2) The world's sin, indifference, distrust, sorrow.(3) The formality of the Church lack of unity and love.(4) Other hindrances of which we may be as ignorant as women were of seal and guard. "Who is sufficient for these things?" Who shall roll these stones away?
4. These hindrances are more than removed if we go on in spite of them. The stone was rolled away, and the Lord was risen. A living present Saviour our strength and joy.
A monument erected to the memory of a Spanish lady was of peculiar and happy design. It represented a full-sized marble coffin, with the lid burst open, revealing the place where the body had lain. A Bible and a cross lay in the vacant place upon the grave clothes, and on the inside of the half-raised lid these words were graven: "Non est hic, sed resurrexit.
TopicsDoor, Entrance, Roll, Rolled, Saying, Sepulcher, Sepulchre, Stone, Themselves, Tomb
Outline1. An Angel declares the resurrection of Jesus to three women.9. Jesus himself appears to Mary Magdalene;12. to two going into the country;14. then to the apostles;15. whom he sends forth to preach the gospel;19. and ascends into heaven.
Dictionary of Bible ThemesMark 16:3
2012 Christ, authority
7930 Lord's Day, the
2421 gospel, historical foundation
2555 Christ, resurrection appearances
9311 resurrection, of Christ
LibraryThe World-Wide Commission
'Every creature.'--Mark xvi. 15. The missionary enterprise has been put on many bases. People do not like commandments, but yet it is a great relief and strength to come back to one, and answer all questions with 'He bids me!' Now, these words of our Lord open up the whole subject of the Universality of Christianity. I. The divine audacity of Christianity. Take the scene. A mere handful of men, whether 'the twelve' or 'the five hundred brethren' is immaterial. How they must have recoiled when they …
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture
The Enthroned Christ
'So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, He was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God.'--Mark xvi. 19. How strangely calm and brief is this record of so stupendous an event! Do these sparing and reverent words sound to you like the product of devout imagination, embellishing with legend the facts of history? To me their very restrainedness, calmness, matter-of-factness, if I may so call it, are a strong guarantee that they are the utterance of an eyewitness, who verily saw …
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture
'And entering Into the sepulchre, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, clothed in a long white garment.'--Mark xvi. 5. Many great truths concerning Christ's death, and its worth to higher orders of being, are taught by the presence of that angel form, clad in the whiteness of his own God-given purity, sitting in restful contemplation in the dark house where the body of Jesus had lain. 'Which things the angels desire to look into.' Many precious lessons of consolation and hope, too, lie …
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture
Love's Triumph Over Sin
'Tell His disciples and Peter that He goeth before yon into Galilee.--Mark xvi, 7. This prevailing tradition of Christian antiquity ascribes this Gospel to John Mark, sister's son to Barnabas, and affirms that in composing it he was in some sense the 'interpreter' of the Apostle Peter. Some confirmation of this alleged connection between the Evangelist and the Apostle may be gathered from the fact that the former is mentioned by the latter as with him when he wrote his First Epistle. And, in the …
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture
The Incredulous Disciples
'And when the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, had bought sweet spices, that they might come and anoint Him. 2. And very early in the morning, the first day of the week, they came unto the sepulchre at the rising of the sun. 3. And they said among themselves, Who shall roll us away the stone from the door of the sepulchre? 4. And when they looked, they saw that the stone was rolled away: for it was very great. 6. And entering into the sepulchre, they saw …
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture
The Angel in the Tomb
'They saw a young man sitting on the right side, clothed in a long white garment; and they were aifrighted. 6. And he saith unto them, Be not affrighted. Ye seek Jesus of Nazareth, which was crucified: He is risen; He is not here; behold the place where they laid Him.'--Mark xvi. 5,6. Each of the four Evangelists tells the story of the Resurrection from his own special point of view. None of them has any record of the actual fact, because no eye saw it. Before the earthquake and the angelic descent, …
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture
The Christ Crowned, the Fact
"When God sought a King for His people of old, He went to the fields to find him; A shepherd was he, with his crook and his lute And a following flock behind him. "O love of the sheep, O joy of the lute, And the sling and the stone for battle; A shepherd was King, the giant was naught, And the enemy driven like cattle. "When God looked to tell of His good will to men, And the Shepherd-King's son whom He gave them; To shepherds, made meek a-caring for sheep, He told of a Christ sent to save them. …
by S. D. Gordon—Quiet Talks on the Crowned Christ of Revelation
Our Lord having thus given us an insight into the character of the persons whom he has chosen to proclaim his truth, then goes on to deliver to the chosen champions, their commission for the Holy War. I pray you mark the words with solemn care. He sums up in a few words the whole of their work, and at the same time foretells the result of it, telling them that some would doubtless believe and so be saved, and some on the other hand would not believe and would most certainly, therefore, be damned, …
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 10: 1864
On Thursday Evening, June 8th, 1876. "He . . . upbraided them with their unbelief."--Mark 16:14. I SHALL not dwell so much upon this particular instance of the disciples' unbelief as upon the fact that the Lord Jesus upbraided them because of it. This action of his shows us the way in which unbelief is to be treated by us. As our loving Saviour felt it to be right rather to upbraid than to console, he taught us that on some occasions, unbelief should be treated with severity rather than with condolence. …
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 50: 1904
Sermon for Ascension Day
This third sermon on the Ascension tells us how man ought continually to follow after Christ, as He has walked before us for three and thirty years, passing through manifold and great sufferings, before He returned unto His Father. Mark xvi. 19.--"So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, He was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God." AFTER the Son of God, Jesus Christ, had eaten with His disciples upon the Mount of Olives, and reproved them, that they had been so long time …
Susannah Winkworth—The History and Life of the Reverend Doctor John Tauler
The Necessity of Faith for Justification
1. THE LUTHERAN HERESY VS. THE TEACHING OF THE CHURCH.--The Protestant Reformers, notably Luther and Calvin, did not deny that justification is wrought by faith, but they defined justifying faith in a manner altogether foreign to the mind of the Church. a) They distinguished three kinds of faith: (1) belief in the existence of God and the historical fact that Christ has come on earth, suffered, and ascended (fides historica); (2) the sort of trust which is required for exercising the gift of miracles …
Joseph Pohle—Grace, Actual and Habitual
Fifth Appearance of Jesus.
(Jerusalem. Sunday Evening) ^B Mark XVI. 14; ^C Luke XXIV. 36-43; ^D John XX. 19-25. ^b 14 And afterward ^c as they spake these things [while the two from Emmaus were telling their story] , ^b he was manifested unto the eleven themselves as they sat at meat; ^d 19 When therefore it was evening, on that day, the first day of the week, and when the doors were shut where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus ^c himself ^d came and stood in the midst, ^c of them, and saith unto them, Peace …
J. W. McGarvey—The Four-Fold Gospel
Third and Fourth Appearances of Jesus.
(Sunday Afternoon.) ^B Mark XVI. 12, 13; ^C Luke XXIV. 13-35; ^E I. Cor. XV. 5. ^b 12 And after these things he was manifested in another form [i. e., another manner] unto two of them, as they walked, on their way into the country. ^c 13 And behold, two of them were going that very day to a village named Emmaus [Several sites have been suggested, but the village of Emmaus has not yet been identified beyond dispute. Its location is probably marked by the ruins called el Kubeibeh, which lies northwest …
J. W. McGarvey—The Four-Fold Gospel
(Olivet, Between Jerusalem and Bethany.) ^B Mark XVI. 19, 20; ^C Luke XXIV. 50-53; ^E Acts I. 9-12. ^b 19 So then the Lord Jesus, after he had spoken unto them, ^e 9 And when he had said these things, ^c he led them out until they were over against Bethany: and he lifted up his hands, and blessed them. 51 And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he parted from them [it is significant that our Lord's gesture, when last seen of men, was one of blessing], and ^e as they were looking, he was taken …
J. W. McGarvey—The Four-Fold Gospel
Obedience to the Last Command
Go ye therefore and make disciples of all the nations.' --Matt. 28:19. Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.'--Mark 16:15. #8216;As Thou didst send Me into the world, even so send I them into the world' -- John 17:18; 20:21. Ye shall receive power, when the Holy Spirit is come upon you: and ye shall be My witnesses unto the uttermost parts of the earth.'--Acts 1:8. All these words breathe nothing less than the spirit of world conquest. All the nations,' all the world,' …
Andrew Murray—The School of Obedience
Baptism, a Divinely Appointed Means of Grace.
When we inquire into the benefits and blessings which the Word of God connects with baptism, we must be careful to obtain the true sense and necessary meaning of its declarations. It is not enough to pick out an isolated passage or two, give them a sense of our own, and forthwith build on them a theory or doctrine. In this way the Holy Scriptures have been made to teach and support the gravest errors and most dangerous heresies. In this way, many persons "wrest the Scriptures to their own destruction." …
G. H. Gerberding—The Way of Salvation in the Lutheran Church
Of the Places of Burial.
There were more common and more noble sepulchres. The common were in public burying-places, as it is with us: but they were without the city. "And through that place was no current of waters to be made; through it was to be no public way; cattle were not to feed there, nor was wood to be gathered from thence." "Nor was it lawful to walk among the sepulchres with phylacteries fastened to their heads, nor with the book of the law hanging at their arm." Some sepulchres were extraordinary; that is, in …
John Lightfoot—From the Talmud and Hebraica
Literature. The commentaries on Matt. 28:19; Mark 16:16; John 3:5; Acts 2:38; 8:13, 16, 18, 37; Rom. 6:4; Gal. 3:27; Tit. 3:5; 1 Pet 3:21. G. J. Vossius: De Baptismo Disputationes XX. Amsterdam, 1648. W. Wall (Episcopalian): The History of Infant Baptism (a very learned work), first published in London, 1705, 2 vols., best edition by H. Cotton, Oxford, 1836, 4 vols., and 1862, 2 vols., together with Gale's (Baptist)Reflections and Wall's Defense. A Latin translation by Schlosser appeared, vol. I., …
Philip Schaff—History of the Christian Church, Volume I
"And when the sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome, bought spices, that they might come and anoint Him. And very early on the first day of the week, they come to the tomb when the sun was risen. And they were saying among themselves, Who shall roll us away the stone from the door of the tomb? and looking up, they see that the stone is rolled back: for it was exceeding great. And entering into the tomb, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, arrayed in …
G. A. Chadwick—The Gospel of St. Mark
"So then the Lord Jesus, after He had spoken unto them, was received up into heaven, and sat down at the right hand of God. And they went forth, and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word by the signs that followed. Amen." MARK 16:19-20 (R.V.) WE have reached the close of the great Gospel of the energies of Jesus, His toils, His manner, His searching gaze, His noble indignation, His love of children, the consuming zeal by virtue of which He was not more truly the …
G. A. Chadwick—The Gospel of St. Mark
1. Baptism defined. Its primary object. This consists of three things. 1. To attest the forgiveness of sins. 2. Passages of Scripture proving the forgiveness of sins. 3. Forgiveness not only of past but also of future sins. This no encouragement to license in sin. 4 Refutation of those who share forgiveness between Baptism and Repentance. 5 Second thing in Baptism--viz. to teach that we are ingrafted into Christ for mortification and newness of life. 6. Third thing in Baptism--viz. to teach us that …
John Calvin—The Institutes of the Christian Religion
Dispute with Whitefield
1741. Sunday, February 1.--A private letter, written to me by Mr. Whitefield, was printed without either his leave or mine, and a great numbers of copies were given to our people, both at the door and in the Foundry itself. Having procured one of them, I related (after preaching) the naked fact to the congregation and told them, "I will do just what I believe Mr. Whitefield would, were he here himself." Upon which I tore it in pieces before them all. Everyone who had received it, did the same. So …
John Wesley—The Journal of John Wesley
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