Teach us to know the Father, Son,
And Thee of Both, to be but One:
That, through the ages all along,
This, this may be our endless song,
’Praise to Thy eternal merit,
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit!’”
BISHOP JOHN COSIN.
* * * * *
CONCERNING THE HOLY SPIRIT
"I will pray the
Father, and He shall give you another
Comforter, that He may be with you for ever, even the Spirit
of truth."—JOHN xiv. 16.
"It is expedient
for you that I go away: for if I go not
away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I go, I
will send Him unto you."—JOHN xvi. 7.
It was the night in which He was betrayed. Jesus and His disciples were spending their last hours together before His death. For Him the morrow could bring with it no surprise. He knew that His hour was come—the hour to which all other hours of His past had pointed; and He was ready. Before He left that Upper Room, He lifted up His eyes to heaven and said, “Father, the hour is come; glorify Thy Son.” But to the disciples that night was a night of darkness, and terror, and confusion. They remembered how He had told them He must die; they knew the bloodhounds in Jerusalem were on His track; they could see the shadow’s black edge creeping nearer and nearer; and yet they could do nothing; they could not even persuade Him that anything needed to be done. Nay, it almost seemed as if He were taking part with His enemies against them. “It is expedient for you,” He said, “that I go away”—veiling in His pity the horror of His going. “Expedient” for them? How could He speak like that? Was He not everything to them? If He went away, what was to befall them? They would be as sheep in the midst of wolves, as orphans in an unkindly world. Is it any wonder that sorrow filled their hearts?
And not only to these His first disciples, but to many of His followers in later days, this word of Jesus has proved a hard saying. If only, we think, He were with us as He was with Peter and James and John; if only we could hear Him teach in our streets, or in our church, as once He taught in the streets of Jerusalem and the synagogue at Nazareth; if only He could enter our homes, as once He entered the home at Bethany, how easy it would be to believe! But, now He is no longer here, the air is filled with doubting voices, and faith is very hard.