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“ preached to the poor;" to the poor

in the world as well as to the poor or humble in spirit. Here then is a comfort to us in our distresses, whether worldly or spiritual. In the former it assures us of a Protector, in the latter of a Saviour. In the former it aids us in all our lawful worldly employments; in the latter, it is “ an anchor of the soul, sure and stedfast?;" through both have we that purity of mind, that stability of purpose, that true faith and confidence, which is eminently the Christian's; and which if held firmly and stedfastly to the last, will give

peace

of mind which the world cannot give.”

That we may really receive in our minds this Gospel, and understand it aright let us earnestly pray. And he who first preached it, can best impress us with its meaning. To him belong the tidings of salvation, from him they first came, by him are they daily imparted, and to him must the praise and the honor

66 that

us

be paid.

1 Heb. vi. 19.

May he bestow on us the blessing of his Holy Spirit, and by him enable us “to have a right judgment in all things ;" so that having passed through this world in the constant and deliberate discharge of our duty, founded on our belief in him whose Gospel we have received, and animated with the joy which consciousness of our so doing must afford us, we may be admitted to salvation in the next, through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom be ascribed all praise, honor, and glory, for ever and ever.

SERMON VIII.

THE TRANSFIGURATION OF OUR BLESSED

LORD.

St. MATTHEW xvii. 1, 2.

And after six days Jesus taketh Peter, James, and

John his brother, and bringeth them up into an high mountain apart, and was transfigured before them.

The transfiguration of our blessed Saviour is so very important an event in his history, as to be well deserving our attention. It is recorded distinctly by three of the Evangelists; it is believed to be alluded to by the fourth'; and it is directly referred to by St. Peter in one of his Epistles?. It was, therefore, obviously

1 John i. 14.

2

2 Pet. i. 16.

considered by the disciples of our Lord to be one of his greatest miracles : they evidently deduced from it, at least to their own minds, an additional proof of his divinity: they derived from it, as undoubtedly it was intended they should, comfort and instruction; and if we meditate on it rightly, we shall not fail I hope to obtain from it lessons of useful import to ourselves.

In order to a right understanding of this transaction it will be necessary

that we look to some of the circumstances which led to it, as well as to the previous spirit existing in the minds of the Apostles, occasioning them to be in need of the instruction which, by means of this exhibition of himself, their Lord was condescendingly pleased to afford them.

We have already had occasion to allude to the circumstance, that when Jesus Christ first began to preach and to teach, an universal expectation of the approaching advent of the Messiah prevailed. We learn this from the message sent to John the Baptist from the pharisees, as well as from their frequent interrogations of our Lord himself. It is true that the rulers rejected, as such, the humble Jesus, nor could they bring down their worldly notions to the spiritual belief required of them. But still their hope of the almost immediate coming of their Immanuel was not diminished, however they might refuse to receive him under the form in which he appeared. But while this was the case with the higher orders of the Jews, others, of inferior rank and less cultivated intellect, did not hesitate to acknowledge Jesus as the Christ. That they were right in this confession of him we need not say, but we may be permitted to observe upon the motives which, in the first instance, influenced them also. And these we cannot but allow, were no less worldly than were the thoughts of those who rejected our Lord. If the more opulent Jews refused to receive him, because they were of opinion that they should obtain nothing from such a king as they supposed Jesus Christ would be ; his immediate disciples followed him,

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