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His discourse and prayer for His disciples before leaving them were new to earth and for the union of beauty, tenderness, and love have no parallel in human language.
In concluding our remarks on John's gospel we would observe that the Gentiles are not directly addressed in it. In fact, the word is not used by Jesus in John's record. It occurs only twice and is used by the Jews, as follows, when Jesus said: “Yet a little while am I with you, and then I go unto him that sent
Ye shall seek me, and shall not find me: and where I am, thither ye can not come. Then said the Jews among themselves, Whither shall he
that shall not find him? Will he go unto the dispersed among the Gentiles, and teach the Gentiles ?"a
The word Gentiles is used twenty-one times in the Old Testament. It occurs but sixteen times in the four gospels and seventy-one times in the other books of the New Testament. The chief reason for the infrequency of its use in the Old Testament no doubt may be found in the fact that the Jews were not a missionary people. Their religion was national, or ethnic. It was not given to the entire human race; Christ's personal ministry, and that of His apostles during His life, being confined to the Jews is the reason, no doubt, for the few references to the Gentiles during this period. Out of the sixteen times in which it is used in the gospels there are only two instances in which it is used to show that the Gentiles may have part or lot in the blessings of the gospel.
John vii. 33-35.
This is the passage already quoted from Matthew which had been spoken by Isaiah when he said, “I will put my Spirit upon him, and he shall show judgment to the Gentiles . . . and in his name shall the Gentiles trust.”. The frequent occurrence of the
" a word in the other books of the New Testament may be accounted for from the fact that they narrate what occurred after the gospel was commanded to be preached to the Gentiles. Those who are not Jews might do well, therefore, to pay direct attention to the first enunciation of the gospel to them if they would know its requirements and enjoy its blessings.
a Matt. xii. 18-21.
THE PASSION OF CHRIST
The Thief on the Cross. The Lord's Supper a Monument. The
Betrayal and Crucifixion. The Resurrection and Commission. Terms of Pardon.
We come now to the promise of Christ to the thief on the cross, mentioned only by Luke, as follows: “And one of the malefactors which were hanged railed on him, saying, If thou be Christ, save thyself
But the other answering rebuked him, saying, Dost not thou fear God, seeing thou art in the same condemnation ? And we indeed justly; for we receive the due reward of our deeds; but this man hath done nothing amiss. And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To-day shalt thou be with me in paradise.” If it be granted here that the statement of Jesus “To-day shalt thou be with me in paradise,” implied that the malefactor was pardoned, which I presume will not be denied, it is the last recorded case of pardon by Jesus during His life-mission on earth. It will be observed here that the only evidence, so far as the record goes, that the thief had of being pardoned, or
a Luke xxiii. 39-43.
of being in paradise immediately after death, was the word of Jesus. Nor has the world had any additional evidence since. This case then forms no exception to the cases heretofore alluded to, for they were all pardoned by the word of Jesus.
The last act in the great drama of human redemption is about closing, and Jesus instituted the Supper to be observed in memory of His death. While the Lord's Day is a perpetual monument, showing His resurrection, the Lord's Supper perpetuates the memory of His death. It has been observed from the night of His betrayal all down the ages; it testifies all over the world. As a monument it marks alike the place of His death and keeps in everlasting memory the fact. “As often as you eat this bread and drink this cup do ye
show the Lord's death till He come.”
Having instituted this ordinance He was betrayed by Judas; arrested by a mob; condemned by the high priest on a confession of His own divinity; sentenced to death on the cross by Pilate; buried in the tomb of Joseph, and arose the third day, bringing life and immortality to light. The closing scenes in the life of Jesus will be new while time shall last. His last hours of sadness and grief will ever stir the deepest emotions of the human heart, and His death will call forth tears without end. The great heroes of earth
rth conquered by their life; He by His death. They built empires by the shedding of the blood of others, by His own blood shed for others He is conquering the world.
After Jesus rose from the dead He was manifested
to the apostles “By many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God.”a They asked Him saying, “Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel? And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath
put in His own power. But ye shall receive power,
after that the Holy Spirit is come upon you; and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”b Before Jesus ascended He gave the great commission to the apostles to go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. This is variously recorded in the four gospels. Matthew records it thus: “And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying: All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, , and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” Mark's record is as fol
c lows: “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.”d Luke, in giving the same commission, says: “Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the Scriptures, and said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it
a Acts i. 3.
b Acts i. 6-8.