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ke with her. And when the Lord saw her, CHAP. “ he had compassion on her, and faid unto III.
her, Weep not. And he came and touched " the bier, (and they that bare him stood still) “ and he said, Young man, I say unto thee, " arise. And he that was dead fat up, and
began to speak : and he delivered him to his « mother. And there came fear on all : and
they glorified God, saying, I That a great “ prophet is risen up among us, and that God “ had visited his people.”
What is there here that the most suspicious person could distrust? Christ came from Capernaum, where he had healed the servant of the centurion. He arrived at the time of the funeral : he found him at the gate of the city, attended by a great number of the inhabitants. The mother, who had lost her only son, was dissolved in tears ; the tomb was prepared; they were going to put the corpse into it.
Where is there room for deceit? Or if in such circumstances the young Man's death be not certain, how must one be more positively assured? and if it be true, how can the resurrection be doubted, under the same circumItances and before the same identical witnesses ?
But how do I know, (will perhaps be said by a timorous man, and one that is wavering in his faith) whether his death and resurrection be faithfully related, and whether they were real? After so many proofs of the fincerity of the evangelists, and of the truth of the misacles of Christ and his apostles, there can
be I Lake vii. 16.
PART be no room to return to this original doubt: IV. nevertheless I
am very ready to confider it, provided that we do not carry this
suspicion too far, and extend it to very minute circumstances, or to facts which appeared contrary to the design of the evangelists, who might have had some interest in suppressing them for the glory of Jesus Christ.
It is said, that the fame of this miracle was every where promulged, as well as the reflection of the people, that a great prophet appeared, and that God had visited his people; that the disciples of Saint John reasoned about him, and that he appointed two of them to send to Christ, and say, “ Art thou he that “ should come, or look we for another? (They « indeed came to Jesus) and said to him,
John Baptist hath sent us unto thee, saying, « Art thou he that should come, or look we " for another?"
Such a question proposed by public deputies to Jesus Christ before the multitude, seemed a recantation of the ancient testimonies which Saint John had so often given of him ; or at least appeared to imply a doubt and hefitation, and of course à change, in his sentiment. Christ, therefore in order to prevent the unjust consequence they might draw from it, spoke greatly of the constancy and resolution of Saint John after the departure of his disciples, and of the divine light which enlightned him, superior to that of the prophets. Such a deputation and question had not the
air Luke vil. 17.
air of people zealous for the glory of Christ ; CHAP.
them as certain ; and consequently the miracle, which was the occasion of them, must be evident:
This becomes still clearer, when we examine what Christ did in the presence of Saint John's deputies, and what he said to them: for he cured many diseased in their sight, delivered those who were poffeffed with malignant spirits, gave sight to many that were blind, and he added, " Go your way, and teil
John what things ye have seen and heard, “ how that the blind see, the lame walk, the
lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead
are raised, to the poor the gospel is preached.”. It is not faid, that Christ did then actually raise any one from the dead, as is affirmed of the other miracles which he performed in their presence. But the resurrection of the young man of Naim was recent; it was of that they spoke with astonishment, and with a secret jealousy of their master ; and it is distinctly pointed out in these words, “ Go
your way, and tell what things ye have “ seen and heard.”
If they will yet assert, that at that very time some one had been raised from the dead, I shall not oppose it: the resurrection performed at Naim will thereby be only the more strongly evinced : and it suffices me to observe, that the miracles wrought in the presence of Saint John's deputies, who were already distrustful and jealous, VOL. III.
Part must have been very astonishing and beyond IV. all doubt, to have been able to convince them;
and that the resurrection of the dead which happened in their fight, or within their memory, mut have been very sure and well evinced, to constrain them to prefer Christ to their master, to advance instead of extenuating his glory, and to acknowledge him for the expected Messiah, instead of considering him as a rival of John the Baptist ; for this is the import of those words which Christ subjoins, “ Blessed is he, whosoever shall not be of“ fended in me.” That is to say, in whom my miracles and glory shall not create a sentiment of envy or forrow, and who shall not be secretly a Micted with what edifies and consoles others.
"Resurrection of Lazarus: certain proofs
of his death.
AM persuaded, that whilft I have been
furrection of the young man at Naim, most people think on that of Lazarus, whose fame was much greater, and the consequences more important; and it is time indeed to examine it, but in a-simple and natural manner, suitable to the capacity of the multitude, and of which the learned and illiterate might be equal judges.
For this purpose it will only be necessary to esta-CHAP. blish clearly the truth of Lazarus's death, and II. in the same manner to prove his resurrection, by Thewing the necessary connection of these two events with circumstances which could neither be forged nor suspected.
When they celebrated at Jerusalem the feast of the dedication, of “ The Jews assembled «' themselves before Jesus in Solomon's porch, " and said unto him, How long dost thou “ make us to doubt? if thou be the Christ, tell
us plainly. Jesus answered them, I told
you and ye believed not : the works that I “ do in my Father's name, they bear witness , “ of me... I and my Father are one. Then “ the Jews took up stones to stone him ; and “ Jesus said, Many good works have I fewed
you from my Father, for which of these “ works do ye ftone me? The Jews an« swered him, For a good work we stone “ thee not; but for blasphemy, and because " that thou, being a man, makest thyself God. : “ Jesus answered them: If I do not the works « of my Father, believe me not : but if I “ do ... believe that the Father is in me and I « in him. Therefore they fought again to take “ him: but he escaped out of their hands, « and went away beyond Jordan, into the
place where John abode when he baptized.” Nothing can be more circumstantiated and fina cere than this recital, which not only proves Christ's absence, but his distance from Bethany and Jerusalem during the sickness of Lazarus.
When + John X. 12.