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guish now imparted by the fearfully distinct anticipation of his sufferings. A new pang, too, was inflicted on him by the insensibility of his followers. He could not derive strength from their sympathy, for they understood not yet his character or his destiny. While he prayed in agony, they were sleeping. There was but One Being in the Universe to whom he could look for aid or consolation, his Father in heaven. And how, even in that darkest hour, did the holy mind of Jesus triumph over the strength of agony! Language is vain to describe it can but detract from the impressiveness of the scene. All that can be said, all that can be felt, of the strength of human suffering, and the still greater strength of faith, is comprised in his brief prayer, “Oh my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as thou wilt.”
Faint not, poor traveller, though thy way
Christian ! thy Friend, thy Master pray'd,
JESUS BEFORE THE HIGH PRIEST.
MATT. XXVI, 57.
And they that had laid hold on Jesus led him away to Caiaphas the high priest, where the scribes and the elders were assembled. But Peter followed him afar off, unto the high priest's palace, and went, and sat with the servants to see the end. Now the chief priests and elders, and all the council, sought false witness against Jesus, to put him to death. But they found none, though inany false witnesses came. At
the last came two false witnesses, and said, This fellow said, I am able to destroy the temple of God and to build it in three days. And the high priest arose, and said unto him, Answerest thou nothing? What is it which these witness against thee? But Jesus held his peace. And the high priest answered and said unto him, I adjure thee, by the living God, that thou tell us whether thou be the Christ, the Son of God. Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said. Nevertheless I
say unto you, hereafter shall ye see the Son of Man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven, Then the high priest rent his clothes, saying, He hath spoken blasphemy; what further need have we of witnesses ? Behold, now ye have heard his blasphemy, What think ye? They answered and said, He is guilty of death. Then did they spit in his face, and buffetted him; and others smote him with the palms of their hands, saying, Prophesy unto us, thou Christ, who is he that smote thee?
Now Peter sat without in the palace. And a damsel came unto him, saying, Thou also wast with Jesus of Galilee. But he denied before them all, saying, I know not what thou sayest. And when he was gone out into the porch, another maid saw him, and said unto them that were there, This fellow was also with Jesus of Nazareth. And again he denied with an oath ;
I do not know the man. And after a while came unto him they that stood by, and said to Peter, Surely thou also art one of them, for thy speech be
wrayeth thee. Then began he to curse and to swear, saying, I know not the man. And immediately the cock crew. And Peter remeinbered the words of Jesus, which said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. And he went out, and wept bitterly.
Let us do justice to the great apostle, whose me. lancholy fall is here recorded. The temptation to which he yielded assumed a form different froin his anticipations, and for which, consequently, he was unprepared. When he exclaimed, “ Though I should die with thee, yet will I not deny thee,” he thought not of any trials save those of personal fear ; and those he knew that he could resist. Had danger alone been before him, he would have followed willingly, as he followed in his after years, to prison and to death. But when he saw his master tried as a criminal before the rulers of his nation, to whom he had ever been used to look up with awe, when the miraculous power of Jesus seemed withdrawn, and Jesus himself abandoned alike by heaven and earth to the wrath of his enemies, then the faith of the disciple was shaken; with his faith, his courage fled; and that
ardour which prompted his bold assertions of fidelity, now hurried him to falsehood and perjury.
But “ the Lord turned, and looked upon Peter.”
The voice of Jesus had stilled the waves of the sea. Now, at his look, the wilder waves of passion were hushed in the bosom of his disciple; all but deep and bitter remorse, and love which would now make him indeed ready to die with his master, rather than deny hiin. “He went out, and wept bitterly.” To him much was forgiven, for he loved much ; and a life spent in steadfast endurance in his master's cause, was al engtli crowned by a martyr's glorious death.
Weep not for those, in Christ who sleep,
Within the cold grave's dreamless bed.
Watch o’er each heaven-beloved head.
To realms of bliss their spirits soar,
Live in his smile to die no more.
for those, who here below,
By hope misled, or driven by fear.
Whose heart hath sunk, whose faith is dim,
Weer, child of frailty, weep for bim.