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personal; such as hunger, thirst, fatigue, weariness in travelling to and fro in the discharge of his public ministry; and that poverty and want of the common necessaries of life, which he submitted to, whose divine bounty supplies the wants of all creatures. These, and many other sufferings, he endured in life, which were agreeable to that state of humiliation, in which he was, during the whole course thereof. And this leads us,

Secondly, To consider his humiliation immediately before, as well as in and after his death.

QUEST. XLIX. How did Christ humble himself in his death? ANSW. Christ humbled himself in his death, in that having been betrayed by Judas, forsaken by his disciples, scorned and rejected by the world, condemned by Pilate, and tormented by his persecutors, having also conflicted with the terrors of death, and the powers of darkness, felt and borne the weight of God's wrath, he laid down his life an offering for sin, enduring the painful, shameful, and cursed death of the cross.

QUEST. L. Wherein consisted Christ's humiliation after his death?

ANSW. Christ's humiliation after his death, consisted in his

being buried, and continuing in the state of the dead, and under the power of death, till the third day, which hath been otherwise expressed in these words, He descended into hell.

N considering the subject matter of these answers, we are led to take a view of our Saviour, in the last stage of life, exposed to those sufferings which went more immediately before, or attended his death. And,

I. Let us consider him in his sufferings in the garden, when his soul was exceeding sorrowful, even unto death; and he desired his disciples, not only as an instance of their sympathy with, and regard to him in his agony, that they would tarry at a small distance from him, while he went a little farther, and prayed, as one that tasted more of the bitterness of that cup, which he was to drink, than he had done before; but pressed this upon them, as what was necessary to their own advantage, when he says, Watch and pray that ye enter not into temptation, Matt. xxvii. 38, 39. 41. But they seemed very little concerned, either for his distress, or their own impending danger; for, when he returned, he found them asleep, and upbraids them for it, What, could ye not watch with me one hour? ver. 40. and

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afterwards, though he had given them this first kind and gen tle reproof, for their unaccountable stupidity, and repeated his charge, that they should watch and pray; yet, when he came a second time, he found them asleep again, ver. 43. This was, doubtless, an addition to his afflictions, that they, who were under the highest obligation to him, should be so little concerned for him.

II. After this he was betrayed by Judas, a pretended friend, which added to the affliction. This does not argue any unwillingness in him to suffer, as is evident from his own words, some time before, viz. I have a baptism to be baptized with, and how am I straitened till it be accomplished? Luke xii. 50. As also from his going up to Jerusalem with that design, as knowing that his hour was at hand. How easily might he have declined this journey, had he been unwilling to suffer? And, if he thought it his duty to be at Jerusalem, at the feast of the passover, which was not absolutely necessary, (for all were not obliged to come there at the feast) he might, notwithstanding, had he been unwilling to suffer, have went there privately: but, instead of that, he made a more public entrance into it than was usual, riding in triumph, and accepting of the loud acclamations and hosannas of the multitude, which, any one might suppose, would draw forth the envy of his inveterate enemies, and sharpen their malice against him, and thereby hasten the execution of their bloody design.

Again, that he did not suffer unwillingly, appears, in that, when the band of officers, being led by Judas, was sent to apprehend him, He asks them, whom seek ye? They answered him, Jesus of Nazareth; Jesus saith unto them, I am he; upon which we read, that they went backward, and fell to the ground, John xviii. 4-6. and gave him an opportunity to make his escape, had he intended to decline these last sufferings: but he not only delivered himself into their hands, but prohibited the overture of a rescue, which Peter attempted in his favour, ver. 10, 11. As to what concerns his being betrayed into the hands of his enemies, by one of his disciples, this is often mentioned, as a very considerable part of his sufferings: the price which the traitor demanded, or which was the most they would give for this barbarous and inhuman action, was thirty pieces of silver.* This being foretold by the prophet, is represented as an instance of the highest contempt that could be cast upon him: he calls it a goodly price that I was prized at of them, Zech. xi. 13. it was the price of a servant, or slave, when pushed by the ox, so that he died, Exod. xxi. 32. This shews how little he was

* A piece of silver is the same which is elsewhere called a shekel, which was valued at about half a crown, English money; so that the whole price for which our Su viour was sold into their hands, was no more than three pounds fifteen shillings

valued, by those who were under the highest obligations to him. And providence permitted it to be a part of his sufferings, that we may learn from hence, that hypocrites sometimes mix themselves with his faithful servants, who, notwithstanding the mask, or disguise of religion, which they affect, their hypocrisy will, one time or other, be made manifest. This was not a wound given by an open enemy, but a pretended friend, and therefore more grievous; and this might also give occasion to some to cast a reproach on his followers (for what will not malice sometimes suggest) as though they were all like him; and their pretence to religion were no more than hypocrisy.

III. Another instance of Christ's humiliation was, in that he was forsaken by his disciples: thus we read, that when he was apprehended, all the disciples forsook him and fled, Matt. xxvi. 56. from whence we may learn,

1. How unable the best of God's people are to exercise that holy courage and fortitude that is necessary in trying dispensations of providence, especially when destitute of extraordinary assistance from the Spirit of God.

2. This was ordered by providence, to add weight to Christ's sufferings, in which none stood with him to comfort or strengthen him; as the apostle Paul says, At my first answer no man stood with me, but all men forsook me, 2 Tim. iv. 16. which could not be otherwise than a very afflictive circumstance; nevertheless,

3. There was a farther design of providence in permitting this cowardise, namely, that they might not suffer with him; and therefore it is observed, by one of the evangelists, that when our Saviour was apprehended by the officers, he desired leave of them, that his disciples might go their way, John xviii. 8. If they had been apprehended, it may be, they might have been accused, condemned, and crucified with him; which might give occasion to some to suppose, that they bore a part in the purchase of our redemption; which belonged to him alone; and therefore it is said, concerning him, I have trodden the wine press alone, and of the people there was none with me, Isa. Ixiii. 3. To this we may add,

IV. That it was another part of Christ's sufferings, that he was disowned and denied by Peter; since this would give occasion to some to think that he was not worthy to be acknowledged by his friends, while he was insulted and persecuted by his enemies. In the account the evangelist gives of this matter, Matt. xxvi. 69-72. we may observe,

1. That Peter was not, at this time, in the way of his duty, though, probably, it was love to our Saviour, and a desire to see the issue of his trial, that might occasion his going into the High Priest's Palace; yet this he had no call to do at present,

it was a running into the midst of danger, especially consider ing our Saviour, as in the scripture but now referred to, had got leave for his disciples to withdraw. This, Peter ought to have done : for, as we are not to decline sufferings when called to bear them, so we are not, without a sufficient warrant, to rush into them, to go, as he did, in the way of temptation.

2. It was not only shame that induced him to deny our Saviour, but fear; for, it is probable, he might be informed that the High Priest asked him concerning his disciples, as well as his doctrine, therefore he might think, that by owning him and his doctrine, he might be exposed to suffer with him; which, notwithstanding his self-confident resolution a little before, when he said, Though I should die with thee, yet I will not deny thee, ver. 35. he was now afraid to do.

3. He was not only accosted by the damsel, who told him, that he was with Jesus of Galilee; but he was attacked by one of the servants of the High Priest, being his kinsman, whose ear Peter cut off, who said, Did I not see thee in the garden with him? John xviii. 26. This still increased his fear; for he not only appeared as a witness against him, and charged him with having been with him in the garden, but also intimates, that he attempted to rescue him, and that by force of arms, which, as he apprehended might render him obnoxious to the lash of the law as endeavouring to make a riot, for which he concluded that he was liable to suffer punishment; and the person, whose ear he cut off, being the High Priest's kinsman, this would lay him still more open to his resentment. Thus Peter, through the weakness of his faith, and the prevalency of his fear, denied our Saviour; and this was thrice repeated with curses and execrations annexed to it, which still increased his guilt, tended to expose religion, as well as cast a reproach on our Saviour, who was then bearing his testimony to the truth.

V. Another instance of Christ's humiliation was, that he was scorned and rejected by the world; scorned, as though he had been inferior to them. Thus he is represented by the Psalmist, as saying, I am a worm and no man; a reproach of men, and despised of the people. All they that see me, laugh me to scorn; they shoot out the lip, they shake the head, Psal. xxii. 6, 7. This was, doubtless, a malicious design, to fill the minds of men with prejudice against it, and make them ashamed to own it. Our Saviour puts these both together, when he speaks of persons being ashamed of him, and of his words, Mark viii. 38. They had often rejected him, by their unbelief; and this crime was the greater, because they were under the greatest obligations to the contrary. How often did he invite them, in the most affectionate manner, to come to him, and annex hereunto a promise of eternal life? We find, notwithstanding, that he

had reason to complain, as he does, Ye will not come to me, that ye might have life, John v. 40.

Here we might observe the temper of the Jews, before he appeared publickly among them, to have been different from what it was afterwards. When John the Baptist, his fore-runner told them, that he would shortly be made manifest to Israel, multitudes flocked to his ministry, counted him as a great prophet, and rejoiced in his light for a season, and, at the same time, were baptized, and professed their willingness to yield obedience to Christ. But all this was upon a groundless supposition, that he would appear as an earthly monarch, erect a temporal kingdom, bring all other powers into subjection to it, and so deliver them from the Roman yoke, and advance them to great honours in the world: but, when they saw it otherwise, and that he appeared in a low humbled state, and professed, that his kingdom was not of this world, and therefore his subjects must seek for a glory that lies beyond it, which cannot be beheld, but by faith, and, in the expectation hereof, take up their cross, and follow him, immediately they were offended in him: thus the prophet foretels, that he should be for a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence to both the houses of Israel, Isa. viii. 14. and the Psalmist styles him, The stone which the builders refused, Psal. cxviii. 22. both which predictions are applied to Christ by the apostle Peter, 1 Pet. ii. 7, 8. This was also foretold by Simeon, concerning our Saviour, when he was in his infancy, Behold this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel, and for a sign, which shall be spoken against, Luke ii. 43. And this offence taken at him, is intimated to have been almost universal, as appeared from the small number that adhered to him, when he was here on earth, which gave him occasion to say, Blessed is he whosoever shall not be offended in me, Matt. xi. 6.

This treatment he met with throughout the whole course of his ministry, when they loaded him with the most injurious reproaches: but, immediately before his death, they filled up the measure of their iniquity, by reproaching him to the utmost; then it is observed that they blasphemed, and cast contempt upon him, with respect to all those offices which he executes as Mediator. As to his prophetical office, with what abominable profaneness do they speak of the sacred gift of prophecy, which their fathers always counted a peculiar glory, which was conferred upon some of them, whereby they were honoured above all other nations in the world! And what contempt do they cast on him, who had sufficiently proved himself to be greater than all other prophets; when as it is said, They smote him with the palms of their hands, saying, Prophesy unto us, thou Christ, who is he that smote thee? chap. xxvi. 67,

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