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sorrows, and disappointments have been at an end, when the glad tidings reached them that their Lord was risen from the dead: when they saw with their own eyes their blessed Master, whom they had so lately seen dead upon the cross, standing bofere them, alive again, to comfort and to bless them! Then were the disciples glad when they saw the Lord. Then did they call to mind how He had told them of this before : then were they convinced; they believed and taught others to believe, till the last hour of their lives, that He was, that He could be, no other than the Son of the living God.

And not only to them, to us, to Christians, till the end of time, does the glorious event which took place upon this day bring comfort, hope, and consolation. We know that our Redeemer liveth: that the Son of God has died to take away our sins: and is alive again : able to perform and do all that He has promised : able (and willing we are sure, because He died for us) to hear, pity, and bless us. We could not have had this comfortable faith, if Jesus had lain

in the grave and seen corruption as other men do. Nor is this all; our Saviour's rising from the grave, bids us look forward to the same glorious change in our own bodies: it teaches us that there is another state of existence after this: that though worms destroy this body, yet in our flesh shall we see God: and now, knowing where He is, we may remember with comfort the gracious words which He spoke to his disciples, I go to prepare a place for you : a place in heaven for all who love Him and obey Him.

But oh! cursed are the fruits of sin! it is not to all men that this day can bring hope and encouragement. For some there are, who on account of their many sins would fain believe, if they could, that the whole Gospel were a lie : that Christ had been a deceiver: that He had never risen from the grave, and that when they are once dead they shall never wake again. This is what the guilty would believe if they could; and no wonder. For indeed, to sleep for ever in the grave would be to them a far less punishment than being cast into that hell which they expect, because they have deserved. The text shows us how differently the innocent and the guilty feel when placed in the same situation under the hand of God. When the earth quaked, and the angel came down from heaven in glory to the tomb of Christ, the soldiers (most likely some of those very men who had mocked Him and put Him to death three days before), the soldiers shook for fear, and became like dead men: but those good women who were doing their duty and seeking Christ, to them the angel spoke kind and comfortable words, Fear not ye, for I know that ye seek Jesus : and though they had been afraid at what they saw, yet they departed with their hearts full of joy: they found their Saviour, and He encouraged them saying to them, Be not afraid. The wicked soldiers sank down as if they were dead, with fright and guilt: the virtuous and dutiful women were blessed and comforted. If this was the difference between the innocent and the guilty, when only an angel came down from heaven, what will it be in that day when the Lord Himself shall come down from heaven, with a


shout, with the voice of the archangel and the trump of God? And what should we learn from this, but that if we would have a blessed rising from the grave, and be in happiness and peace when the terrors and glories of God shall be round us, we must follow the example of these good women and seek the Lord Jesus Christ : seek Him in our private behaviour, in His church, in His sacraments, bringing with us the offering of a pure and repentant heart, giving up to His service the lives which we have received from Him, practising His holiness, and in all things doing as He would have us. Then when the guilty rise to shame and fear, we shall hear the gracious words spoken to the holy women at the sepulchre, Fear not ye, for I know that ye have sought the Lord.

Believe me, my beloved brethren, I am preaching to you at this moment no vain thing, no deceitful doctrine.

The Holy Spirit of God has declared this to us throughout the Bible : mercy, comfort, hope, peace, pardon, to the virtuous and the penitent for Christ's sake : sorrow, shame, fear, and endless misery to the

wicked. Which, which shall we choose? To rise in glory from our graves, and be with Christ for ever, all sorrow gone away, and every sin forgiven? or to wake at the sound of the last trumpet to know ourselves lost for ever, overloaded with the agonies of guilty fear, with nothing to look forward to but the pains of that fire which never shall be quenched ? Consider these two things calmly: forsake your sins, deny your lusts, and live in holiness whilst you are here on earth, and you shall be for ever blessed with your Maker and your Saviour in heaven: take your full share of this world's sins and follies, live for the flesh, and do just what comes uppermost to your hearts, and in hell you will lift up your eyes being in torments.

We all must die, and we all shall rise again. But let us be assured that before our rising at the last can be to happiness, there is another death and another rising again which we must hạve gone through even whilst we live: we must through repentance die to our sins, and rise again to a new life of holiness. My brethren, have

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