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And if grief has closed your lips, as it did Mary's, still, like her, fall at his feet. Express your reverence by the lowliness of your adoring confidence. You shall not approach him in vain. He will in effect say to you, as he said to the mourners, “ Where have you laid him ?”—that is, He will, in
manifest his readiness to give you effectual relief. No mourner has ever sought his face in vain. He “is a very present help in time of trouble;' therefore " cast all your care upon him, for he careth for you.”
And let those who have not yet been influenced by the love of Christ, come and behold this sympathising Saviour. His tender compassion seemed to affect all present. “ Then said the Jews, Behold how he loved him!” The tears which our Saviour shed found their
way to almost every heart. Surely yours will not be the only one remaining hard as adamant. There was another occasion when Jesus wept : when he drew nigh to Jerusalem, and beheld the city. Then, bursting into tears, (for the original word in that place is much stronger than the one used by St. John,) he said, “ If thou hadst known, even thou, at least in this thy day, the things that belong to thy peace; but now they are hid from thine eyes.”
This was his deepest sorrow—the beholding Jerusalem sinners: or those who, whilst they were favoured with the greatest outward privileges, even the presence of their Lord, still “ knew not the day of their visitation.” This caused his greatest grief: and well it might; for their wilful ignorance was the forerunner of inexpressible misery.
Yes, my friends, there are no tears which might flow so fast as those which are shed for persons enjoying Gospel privileges, and yet neglecting to profit by them. For they, continuing in that state, will be in the very depths of sorrow, without one single person to sympathize with them.
Few descriptions are more affecting, and yet none more true, than that amidst all the misery endured by the finally impenitentsufferings from a fire that never is extinguished—sufferings from a worm that dieth not, or from the wounds inflicted by a corroding conscience continually fretting them -sufferings from the bitter anguish of weeping, and wailing, and gnashing of teeth ;amidst these complicated miseries, which no feeling heart can even think of without something like an inward bleeding and awful horror ; amidst it all, there will not be found one solitary friend to sympathize in their sorrows, -no not even to shed a single tear.
Impenitent sinners have no sympathy with their fellows. They may dread their own sufferings; but they have no feeling for the sufferings of others. Self, and self alone, fills their souls.
Let me then, following the steps of my divine Master, entreat you now to be reconciled to God.
Jesus soon afterwards shewed that his power was equal to his compassion, by raising Lazarus from the
This gracious Saviour is equally ready to raise the death of sin to a life of righteousness.
Oh, then, now apply to him! He is waiting to be gracious. It was a grief to my
you from heart, even for a few moments, to call off the attention from his compassion to his friends, to the final misery of his enemies. But it was my love to your soul-my earnest desire that you might not only escape those dreadful torments, but for ever enjoy the bliss of which his true followers will finally partake. This it was that led me to remind you of this dreadful place. For oh, what would it be, if only one of you--yes, if only one of you-should be cast in there! It would be a greater loss than even the loss of the whole world.
Let me, then, entreat you now to apply to this compassionate Saviour. Stop not by the way with your thoughtless companions, and thus lose the impression now made; but retire to your closet, with your Saviour in your eye, and with these words deeply impressed upon your heart—Jesus WEPT!
JOHN xi. 36, 37. “ Then said the Jews, Behold how he loved him!
And some of them said, Could not this man, which opened the eyes of the blind, have caused that even this man should not have died ?"
We were considering this morning a portion of this sacred narrative, which might fill the soul with admiration of our blessed Saviour -His tender sympathy with the sisters of Lazarus, and with those who had come to mourn with them.
Feeling how impossible it was to do justice to that wonderful sentence, “ Jesus wept :” after offering some observations upon the verses connected with it, I requested you to make it the subject of your private meditations. I trust, my beloved friends, that we meet in some measure under the in