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It will not be uninteresting to remember the history of the heavenly voices attesting the mission of Jesus Christ during His earthly stay. "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased."
And Again." Now is My soul troubled, and what shall I say? Father, save me from this hour? But for this cause came I unto this
hour. Father, glorify Thy name." Then came there a voice from heaven saying, "I have both glorified it, and will glorify it again." Midway between these voices spake the one upon the Holy Mount at the Transfiguration— "This is My beloved Son; hear Him.”
Not only, therefore, do we witness on the Holy Mount the installation of the Royal Lawgiver, but the great High Priest.
It is a grand valedictory service in which He is re-ordained to duty—as the banners are blessed before the army marches to the field. And the voice speaks from heaven as a sovereign gives audience to a chosen commander, and cheers with the encouragement of royal favor.
With what reverence and pleasure should we look upon the scene! As we see Him standing
alone upon the mountain-fresh from His ordination of glory-calm, and kingly in His heaven-imparted strength; and then as we see Him with firm step, treading the dark avenue which, through desertion, agony, insult, abandonment, terminates in His death upon the Cross; surely all distrust should vanish, and all doubting disappear.
It hardly comes within our scope to educe the various lessons which may be taught us in the Holy Mount. Our aim, very imperfectly fulfilled, has been to elicit the meaning of the great event of the Transfiguration, if happily some of its thoughts may linger in our hearts— like chimes heard within doors-softened by the silence and comfort in which we sit and hear them, and ringing on, long after the actual sound has ceased, in the melody of each remembered tone. We can but suggest how, when we have recovered from the thrilling consequent upon the glorious vision, we might learn much of collateral instruction and blessing.
First. We might learn, for example, “The Immortality of the Soul," from the real appearance of two men, who had long ceased to
be inhabitants of this earth, again revisiting the scenes of earth!
Second. We might learn, "The Conscious existence of the spirit after its separation from the body, that it does not sleep, as some affirm, through many ages, but is possessed of intellectual vigor, and, in the case of the righteous, of a residence in glory."
Third.—We might learn that " Christ Crucified is the grand theme of Contemplation and Converse, both to believing hearts on earth and to the ransomed spirits of the sky."
Fourth. We might learn that "God prepares for coming trial by special manifestations of His favor, and though we may fear as we
enter into the cloud,' we shall come out of it with manlier hearts and truer courage."
Fifth. Those who are not, alas! partakers of Christ, might learn, and shudder as they learn, the value of that Divine communion from which they sinfully exclude themselves, and of that inheritance of glory which they so scornfully but aside.
Those who have believed, and rejoice in mountain fellowship with Jesus, might learn that, refreshing as is the difficult air, bracing as
is the steep ascent, rare and elevating as is the glorious companionship, we must not "build our tabernacle there."
In the valley below there is work for us to do, and we must hear our Master's voice as He asks us to descend, and lead us down into the great field of toil and travail and triumph:
"Think not of rest, though dreams be sweet.
He calls you angels-be your strife
NEARLY all the statements made by the four Evangelists cluster in and around the face, form, and bearing, and actions of Jesus. The word "character," as applied to Jesus' is a misnomer, as it is often confounded with the word Reputation."
Character seems generally to mean something outstanding from the person-a kind of dress worn outwardly; at least a faint index to the qualities within. Thus, to say of a man, "he has a good moral character," is to say little. You still ask, what is he? What is the nature of his being? It is of Christ's being, not His character, that we would speak. The company of the disciples in the "Acts," have answered, as by anticipation, all questions about Christ's being when they speak of "A Holy Child-a Divine Child."