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and consequently enforcing nien to acknow to pray, taking with him, Peter, James ledge the truth and divine authority thereof. and John, those three seleat disciples, For promoting which great end, I have whom he had before chosen to be witnesses of communicated to my apostles the same bis transfiguration, and now to be eye-witpower and authority of doing mighty works nesses of his passion, leaving the other disfor the confirmation of their doctrine, and ciples at the garden-door to watch the apthe evidence of thy truth, as thou didst proach of Judas and his band. communicate to me; that so I working in
The sufferings he was on the point of them, as thou hast done in me, and thus confirming with great efficacy and demon
undergoing were so great, that the very stration of the Spirit, they may establish the
prospect of them terrified him, and made same doctrine which I published in person,
him express himself in this doleful exclama
tion, the world may, by this evidence, be con
My soul is exceeding sorrowful, vinced that I was really sent by thee, and
even unto death; tarry ye here, and watch."
On this great occasion he sustained those that my disciples act by the same divine
grievous sorrows in his soul, by which, as cominission.
well as by dying on the cross, he became a
sin-offering, and accomplished the redempHoly and Almighty Father, all those
tion of mankind. whom thou hast thus given me, who have heartily embraced my doctrine, and sin He now withdrew from them about a cerely obeyed it, I desire that thou would stone's cast, and his human nature being est make them partakers of the same happi overburdened beyond measure, be found it ness with myself, and exalt them to behold necessary to retire and pray, that if it was the incomprehensible glory wherewith thou possible or consistent with the salvation of Gidst originally invest me, in thy eternal the world, he might be delivered from the love, before the foundation of the world. sufferings which were then lying on him. The generality of mortals, O righteous Fa It was not the fear of dying on the ther! have not known thee, nor been will. cross, which made him speak or pray in ing to embrace and obey the revelation of
such a manner.
To suppose this, would thy will. But I have known thy will, and infinitely degrade his character. Make his have made it known to my disciples, men sufferings as terrible as possible, clothe of simplicity and honesty; and they have them with all the aggravating circumstances embraced and obeyed it. And I will con of distress; yet the blessed Jesus, whose tinually make it known to them, more and human nature was strengthenied by being more, that they may grow up and improve connected with the divine, could not shrink in faith, in boliness, and in all good works, at the prospect of sufferings, or betray a so as finally to arrive, and cause others to weakness which many of bis followers, who, arrive at that eternal happiness which is the though mere men, were strangers to; haveffect of thy infinite love towards me, and ing encountered more terrible deaths withthrough me towards them.
out the least emotions. He addresses his
divine Father with a sigh of fervent wishes, This pious and benevolent prayer being that the cup might, if possible, be removed ended, Jesus and his disciples came down from him: In the Greek it is, “O that from the mount of Olives into a field below, thou wouldest remove this cup from me!” called Gethsemane, through whieb the And having first kneeled and prayed, he brook Gedron ran, and in it on the other fell prostrate on bis face, accompanying his side of the brook, was a garden, called the address with due expressions of resignation, garden of Gethsemane. Here he desired adding, immediately, “Not as I will, but bis disciples to sit down till be should retire as thou wilt.”
Having prayed, he returned to his dis- | pressed through the pores of his skin, which ciples, and finding them asleep, he said to they pervaded, together with his sweat, and Peter, “Simon, sleepest thou ? couldest fell down in large drops on the ground. thou not watch one hour ?" Thou, who so “ And be left them and went away again. lately didst boast of thy courage and con And there appeared an angel unto trinn stancy in my service, canst thou so soon from heaven, strengthening him. And beforget thy Master ?
ing in an agony, be prayed more earnestly;
and his sweat was, as it were, great drops of But in his greatest distress he never lost blood falling down to the ground." Thus sight of that kind concern he had for his did he suffer unspeakable sorrows in bis disciples. “Watch ye, (says he) and pray, soul, as long as the divine wisdom thought lest ye enter into temptation.” Neither was proper. he, on those extraordinary occasions, in the least chagrined with the offences which they At length be obtained relief, being heard had committed through frailty and human on account of his perfect and entire submisweakness ; on the contrary, was always sion to the will of his heavenly Father. willing to make excuses for them; alledg “ And when he arose up from prayer, and ing in their defence, " that the spirit was come to his disciples, he found them (truly) was willing, but the flesh was weak.” sleeping for sorrow." This circumstance It seems, from these particulars, that he shews how much the disciples were affected spent someconsiderable time in his addresses; with their Master's sufferings. The sensa. because the disciples fell asleep, in his ab tions of grief which they felt on seeing his sence, and he himself retired again to pray ; unspeakable distress so overpowered them, for the sorrows of our Lord continuing to that they sunk into sleep. increase upon him, affected bim to such a degree, that he retired a second time, and Our blessed Saviour, for the last time prayed to the same purpose, saying, came to his disciples, and seeing them still my Father, if this cup may not pass away
asleep, he said, “ Sleep on now, and take from me, except I drink it, thy will be your rest; behold, the hour is at hand, done : (after which he returned again to and the Son of man is betrayed into the them and found them asleep) for their eyes
hands of sinners. Rise, let us be going ; were heavy.”
behold, be is at hand, that doth betray
me.” Matt. xxvi. 45, 46. The event will He returned thus frequently to his disci soon be over, which causes your sorrow: ples, that they by reading his distress in I am betrayed, and ready to be delivered his countenance and gesture, might be witnesses of his passion; which proves that bis pains were beyond description intense, and complicated : for he went away the
CHAP. XXXIV. third time to pray, and notwithstanding an angel was sent from heaven to comfort
The blessed Redeemer is taken by a Band and strengthen him, yet they overwhelmed of Soldiers at the Information of the him, and threw him into an agony: upon Traitor Judas. Heals a wound given which he still continued to pray more ear the High Priest's Servant, by Simon nestly.
up to death
But the sense of his sufferings still in UDAS, who had often resorted to the ereasing, they strained his whole body to so garden of Gethsemane, with the disciviolenta degree, that his blood, as it were, was ' ples of our Lord, knowing the spot, and
the usual time of his Master's repairing He went before the soldiers, on pretence thither, informed the chief priests and elders that he would lead them to the place, and that the proper time for apprehending Jesus shew them the man by kissing him : howwas now cone. They, therefore, sent a eyer, to conceal his villainy from his Master band of soldiers with him, and servants and the disciples, he walked bastily, and carrying lanterns and torches to shew without waiting for the band, went up them the way; because, though it was always directly, and saluted him; wishing, perfull moon at the passover, the sky might be haps, to apprize him of his danger. But dark with clouds, and the place whither Jesus did not fail to convince him that he they were going was shaded with trees. knew the meaning and intent of his salutation, At the same time a deputation of their saying; " betrayest thou the Son of man, number accompanied the band to see that with a kiss ?” Judas certainly concealed every one did his duty.
his treachery so well, that Peter did not Judas having thus received a band of suspect bim, as it is probable he would have
struck at him, rather than at Malchus, the men and officers from the chief priests and
high priest's servant. pharisées, they went thither with lanterns and torches, and weapons: for they were exceeding anxious to secure and get him
The appointed time of our Lord's sufinto their hands : and the soldiers having,
ferings being now come, he did not, as
formerly, avoid his enemies; but, on the perhaps, never seen Jesus before, found it
contrary, on their telling him they sought necessary that Judas should distinguish him,
Jesus of Nazareth, he replied, I am he; and point him out to them by some particu
thereby insinuatiug to them, that he was
willing to put himself into their hands. St. Luke seems to say, that Judas went At the same time to shew them that they before thein, at a little distance, to prepare could not apprehend bim without his own them for the readier execution of their odice, consent, hein anextraordinary manner exerby kissing his Master, the token they had ted his divine power; he made the whole agreed upon, that they might not mistake band fall back, and threw them to the ground. him and seize a wrong person.
" And he “Jesus, therefore, knowing all things that that was called Judas, one of the twelve, should come upon him, went forth, and went before them, and drew near unto said unto them, whomseek ye? They answerJesus to kiss bim.” Nor can the account ed him, Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus said unto which St. Johın has given us be understood them, I am he. And Judas also who beon any other supposition. He says, that trayed him, stood with them. As soon then after Judas was come up with the soldiers, as he bad said unto them, I am he, they Jesus went out of the garden, and asked went backward, and fell to the ground." then, who it was they were seeking? To But the soldiers and the Jews, imagining, which they replied, Jesus of Nazareth. It perhaps, that they had been thrown down therefore follows, that they were at a loss by some demon or evil spirit with whom the to know him, which they could not have Jews said he was in confederacy, advanced been, bad they seen Judas kiss him ; the towards him a second time "Then asked kiss, therefore, must have been in the he them again, whom seek ye? and they garden before the band came up, nor is said, Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus answered, their agreement about the sign inconsistent I have told you that I am he, (expressing with this supposition ; because that confu again his willingness to fall into their hands.) sion which commonly attends the commis If, therefore, ye seek ine, let these go their sion of an evil action, might prevent Judas way.” If your business be with me alone, from giving the sign at the proper season. suffer my disciples to pass : for the party had