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hast redeemed us to God by thy blood;" even there, it is the recollection of the cross of Christ, which adds unspeakably to the lustre of his crown.
Continuing the narrative, we find that no sooner did the disciples behold this splendid company, than “ Simon Peter said unto Jesus, Lord, it is good for us to be here.” Yes, even the natural heart can appreciate this; it is good to be present during a vision of glory, far better than to hear of suffering, humiliation, and death. “If thou wilt, let us make three tabernacles, one for thee, one for Moses, and one for Elias.” St. Luke adds to his account of the wonderful transaction, that Peter said this, “not knowing what he said.” Surely he could not have known what he said, when he thus proposed that the citizens of heaven should once more become 66
strangers and pilgrims upon earth : " he could not have known what he said, when he offered a temporary tabernacle of man's ereoting, as a resi
dence for those who dwelt within the walls of that " city, whose builder and maker is God.” Here, then, again the zealous Peter “ spake unadvisedly with his lips ;” for be ye sure, my brethren, that there is not one resident in the courts above, who would return to earth for the most glorious of worldly portions, or even for the dearest of earthly friends. The language of the lowest saint in that blessed place unquestionably is, “ I would rather be a door-keeper in the house of my God,” than to dwell in the proudest palaces, or rule the richest kingdoms, upon earth. When, in some moment of deep and heartfelt regret for those who have gone
before us to their rest, we are tempted, and who is not so tempted ? almost to desire that our departed friends might again revisit us, might again “ take sweet counsel together, and go up with us to the house of God as friends, or unite their voices to ours in prayer and praise, and once more take up a
temporary abode in earthly tabernacles, we indeed “know not what we say. “ It is good for us to be here :” blessed for us who are at present living by faith, not by sight,” to enjoy these imperfect communications with our God, to be “ upon the Mount,” and approach as near to heaven, as this state of imperfection will admit: but what would even the highest of these enjoyments be to those blessed spirits, who now see God's face in righteousness, and know, even as they are known? O! if you hope that you have one friend, one relative in those blissful scenes, instead of unavailing regrets for their absence, or desires for their return, be more unceasingly earnest, more devotedly persevering, in following them, even as they followed Christ; always bearing in mind the consolatory assurance, that you may go to them, though they cannot return to you. Wait but a little while, and the services of the heavenly temple will be open to
yourselves, and you shall again unite
, with those you love, in praises which shall not weary, and in a worship which shall never cease.
But we must briefly conclude this instructive subject :
" While Peter yet spake, behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased ; hear
him. And when the voice was passed, Jesus was found alone.” How glorious a testimony from God himself, to the preeminence of the “ beloved Son !” Moses and Elias are overshadowed by the bright cloud, and vanish from the sight, but Christ remains ! The law, and the prophets, yield to the far clearer, and more glorious dispensation of the Gospel.
The veil which had long been drawn over this great truth, is for ever thrown aside, and Jesus stands confessed " the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords !"
“ Hear ye him,” was the death-note
of the old dispensations, as they passed into oblivion.
“ Hear ye him,” is the inspiring cry of the church militant, as she goes on her way warring and travailing upon earth. 66 Hear
ye him,” will form a portion of the chorus of the church triumphant, when, having overcome by the blood of the Lamb,” she shall sit down an honoured and a glorious bride at the everlasting table of the Lord.
How can we, then, your fellow-labourers, and“ helpers of your joy,” leave a more hallowed sound upon your ears? what more valuable admonition, can we pray the blessed Spirit of God, to carry home to your hearts, than these words of the great Jehovah himself, "This is my beloved Son ; hear
That you may so hear that adorable Redeemer, as to believe, receive, and obey him, may God of his infinite mercy grant!