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H E last Lecture ended with the history of our Lord's resurrection. The evangelist then proceeds to give a concise account of what passed after that great event had taken place. “ Then (says he) the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain, where Jesus had appointed them *.” By the eleven disciples he means the apostles, who, though originally twelve, were now reduced to eleven, by the defection and death of Judas. These Jesus had commanded to meet him in Galilee. * Go, tell my brethren, (says he to the women) that they go into Galilee, and
- there * Matt. xxviii. 16.
there shall they see me.” There therefore the apostles went about eight days after the resurrection, and many others with them; for this probably was the time and the place when he showed himself to about five hundred brethren at once. “And when they saw him they worshipped him; but some doubted.” Here we have the authority of the apostles themselves for the worship of Christ. The women, when they first saw Jesus, paid him the same adoration: “they came and held him by the feet, and worshipped him *.” But some, it is added, doubted. And where can be the wonder, if among five hundred persons there should be two or three, who, like the disciples mentioned by St. Luket, believed not for joy, and wondered; that is (as is very natural) were afraid to believe what they so ardently wished to be true; or who, like St. Thomas, would not believe, unless they touched the body of Jesus, and thrust their hands into his side. But their doubts, --- - - - - like * Matt. xxviii. 9. + Ch. xxiv. 41.
like his, were probably soon removed. This circumstance therefore only serves to show the scrupulous fidelity of the sacred historians, who, like honest men, fairly tell you every thing that passed on this and on similar occasions, whether it appears to make for them or against
them. “And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in
heaven and in earth.” - -
In his divine nature he had this power from all eternity; but it was now to be exercised in his human nature also, which, from a state of humiliation, from the form of a servant, was soon to be exalted to the highest dignity, and placed at the right hand of God. Accordingly St. Paul informs us, that “God raised our Lord from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places, far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but in that which is to come ; and put all things
things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all *.” And again, in his Epistle to the Philippians, he says, that “God has highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name; that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father +.” In the same magnificent language he is spoken of in the book of Revelations: “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain, to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing.” And again, “Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb, for ever, and
ever ..” - . . . Such is the dignity of the Lord, and Master Master whom we serve; and such is that authority with which, in the two concluding verses of this chapter, he gives his last command to his apostles: “Go ye, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost; teaching them to observe all things whatever I have commanded you : and lo! I am with you
* Ephes. i. 20–23. t Philipp. ii. 9–11. j: Rev. v. 12, 13.
alway, even unto the end of the world.” The ceremony then by which our Lord's disciples were to be admitted into his religion, was baptism. This was sometimes used by the Jews on the admission of proselytes, and by the heathens on initiation into their mysteries. But the baptism of Christians was to be accompanied with a peculiar form of words, which distinguished it from every other. They were to be baptized in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. This form of words has accordingly been used in the Christian church from the earliest times down to the present; and is, as you all know, the mode of baptism adopted and 4. - constantly