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MISSION OF THE APOSTLES.
AND when he had called unto him his twelve disci-` ples, he gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness, and all manner of disease. Now the names of the twelve apostles are these: The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; Philip, and Bartholomew; Thomas, and Matthew the publican; James the son of Alpheus, and Lebbeus, whose surname was Thaddeus ; Simon the zealot, and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed him. These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not. But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give. Provide neither gold, nor silver, nor brass, in your purses; nor scrip for your journey, neither two coats, neither shoes, nor yet a staff; for the workman is worthy of his meat. And into whatsoever city or town ye shall enter, inquire who in it is worthy; aud there abide till ye go thence. And when ye come into a house, salute it. be worthy, let your peace come upon not worthy, let your peace return to you.
And if the house it; but if it be And whosoever
shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house, or city, shake off the dust of your feet. Verily, I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah, in the day of judgment, than for that city. Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.
It was most important for the object of their mission, that the Apostles should be at peace with all men; that no ground of offence should be afforded by them to any; and that no earthly care, no foreign pursuit, should be permitted to divide their attention. They are therefore warned, not to encumber themselves with any provision for their journey beyond the demands of necessity, and to accept readily th' hospitality that might be offered. They are directed, not, during their stay in a city, to change their place of abode; lest their great object should be forgotten, in an anxious regard to personal convenience. Our Saviour teaches us not to be diverted by trifles, from the pursuit of important ends; to avoid, as far as possible, causes of contention with our fellow men; and especially to go on, in the pursuit of Christian excellence and usefulness, undisturbed by thoughts of worldly advantage or disadvantage, but ever keeping our grand object full in view; blending, in our means for its attainment, the wisdom of the serpent with the harmlessness of the dove.
Behold the apostolic band,
Their master's heavenly word.
A holy charge on them was laid,
Fearless, when hostile men combined,
And when disease, or sword, or flame,
The souls to heaven from whence they came
TO THE RETURN OF THE TWELVE.
RAISING OF LAZARUS.
JOHN XI. 1. 17.
Now a certain man was sick, named Lazarus, of Bethany, the town of Mary and her sister Martha. (It was that Mary which anointed the Lord with ointment, and wiped his feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick)-Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus. When he had heard therefore that he was sick, he abode two days still in the same place where he was. Then after that, saith he to his disciples, Let us go into Judea again. Then when Jesus came, he found that he had lain in the grave four days already. Now Bethany was nigh unto Jerusalem, about fifteen furlongs off; and many of the Jews came to Martha and Mary, to comfort them concerning their brother. Then Martha, as soon as she heard that Jesus was coming, went and met him; but Mary sat still in the house. Then said Martha unto Jesus, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died; but I know that even now, whatsoever thou wilt ask of God, God will give it
thee. Jesus saith unto her, Thy brother shall rise again. Martha saith unto him, I know that he shall rise again, in the resurrection, at the last day. Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection and the life; he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live; and whosoever liveth and believeth in me, shall never die. Believest thou this? She saith unto him; Yea, Lord; I believe that thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world. And when she had so said, she went her way, and called Mary her sister secretly, saying, The Master is come, and calleth for thee. As soon as she heard that, she arose quickly, and came unto him. (Now Jesus was not yet come into the town; but was in that place where Martha met him.) The Jews then which were with her in the house, and comforted her, when they saw Mary, that she rose up hastily, and went out, followed her saying, She goeth unto the grave to weep there. Then when Mary was come where Jesus was, and saw him, she fell down at his feet, saying unto him; Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died. When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and the Jews also weeping which came with her, he groaned in the spirit, and was troubled ; and said, Where have ye laid him? They say unto him, Lord, come and see. Jesus wept. 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? Jesus therefore, again groaning in himself, cometh to the grave. It was a cave, and a stone lay upon it. Jesus said, Take ye away the stone. Then they took away the stone. And Jesus lift up his eyes,