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THE

EPIPHANY OF THE GALILEAN

MOUNTAIN

All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: teaching them to do all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

MATTHEW xxviii. 18-20.

VIII.

THE EPIPHANY OF THE GALILEAN MOUNTAIN.

The last night the Man of Sorrows was on the Mountain

Rendezvous. earth, while He was on the way from the Passover-chamber to Gethsemane, He said to His disciples: “All ye will be offended in Me this night: for it is written, ‘I will smite the Shepherd, and the Zech. xiii. 17. sheep of the flock shall be scattered abroad'; but after I have risen again, I will go before you into Galilee.” That same Friday night, the Shepherd was indeed smitten, and the sheep of the flock were indeed scattered. Nevertheless Easter Sunday came; but the infant Church knew not that it was Easter. And so the devoted ministering wo- Mark xvi. 1-7. men came in the early dawn to the sepulchre, to complete the sacred rites of embalming. But, instead of finding the precious corpse, they saw a vision of angels, who said : “ Be not affrighted : ye seek Jesus the Nazarene, Who was crucified: He is not here: He has risen: hasten, and tell His disciples and Peter that He goeth before you into Galilee: there shall ye see Him, as He said unto you.” Departing quickly from the tomb, with Matt. xxviii. 8fear and great joy, the Risen Lord Himself met

Matt. xxvi. 30

82.

10.

them, saying, “ All hail !” And while they were still holding Him by the feet, and worshiping Him, He said to them: “Go, tell My brethren that they depart into Galilee, and there shall they see Me." Why He selected Galilee as the place of a special rendezvous, we have not been told. When, however, we remember that it was in Nazareth of Galilee that He had been brought up, and spent most of His thirty years : that Galilee had been the chief scene of His public ministry: and that most of His followers were Galileans : we need not be surprised that, although He was risen from the dead, Galilee was still dear to Him. What the precise spot in Galilee was which He had appointed, whether the Mountain of the Beatitudes, or the Mountain of the Transfiguration, or some other mountain, we have not been informed. All we know is that after Passover week was over, the eleven Apostles went into Galilee, unto the mountain which Jesus had appointed them. Moreover, there is reason for believing that this was also the occasion to which the Apos-> tle Paul alludes, when, in his magnificent argument for the Resurrection, he declares that the Risen Lord had appeared to above five hundred brethren at once: the greater part of whom, he adds, were still alive when he wrote, and therefore could challenge his assertion if it were not true. Nor is it difficult to picture the scene of the grand assembling. The slopes of the nameless Galilean mountain are alive with ascending and joyous pilgrims. There are the eleven Apostles: Peter and Andrew, James and John, Philip and Bartholo

Matt. xxviii. 16.

1 Cor. xv. 6.

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