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8, 10, 33. Then Peter, filled with the Holy Ghost, said unto them, Ye rulers of the people, and elders of Israel, if we this day be examined of the good deed done to the impotent man, by what means he is made whole, be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole.—And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of Jesus Christ: and great grace was upon them all. v. 12, 15, 31, 32. And by the hands of the apostles were many signs and wonders wrought among thepeople; insomuch that they brought forth the sick into the streets, and laid them on beds and couches, that at the least, the shadow of Peter passing by might overshadow some of them.—Him hath God exalted with his right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins. And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him.
8. Q. Why do you add the circumstance of the time of his resurrection, that He rose the third day?
A. To shew that he rose according to the types and prophecies, that had gone before concerning him; and upon the very day that he himself had foretold he would rise. Jonah, i. 17. ii. 10. Compare Matt. xii. 14. Jon. Now the Lord had prepared a great fish to swallow up Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights.—And the Lord spake unto the fish; and it vomited out Jonah upon the dry land. Matt. For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly: so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in
the heart of the earth. Matt. xvi. 21. From that time forth began Jesus to shew unto his disciples, how that he must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders, and chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day. John, ii. 19, 20. Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. Then said the Jews, Forty and six years was this temple in building, and wilt thou rear it up in three days? Jiut he spake of the temple of his body.
Proof Subjoined.—Acts, x. 49. Him (rod raised up the third day and shewed him openly.
9. Q. How does it appear that it was the third day on which he rose?
A. 'He suffered on the sixth day, being our Friday, between nine and three o'clock in the afternoon: bHe rose on the first, commonly called our Sunday morning, after; and so was dead part of Friday; all Saturday, and part of Sunday. For the Jews computed the day from the evening; and so Saturday night, six o'clock, the first day of the week, according to them, began.
Proofs Subjoined.—* Matt. xxvii.45. Now, from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour. Mark, xv. 25. And it was the third hour, and they crucified him. Luke, xxiii. 44. And it was about the sixth hour, and there was a darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour.
"Matt. xxviii. 1. In the end of the sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre. Mark, xvi. 2, 9. And very early in the morning, the first day of the week, t/iey came unto the sepulchre, at the rising of the sun. Now, when Jesus was risen early the first day of the week, he appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he cast seven devils. Luke, xxiv. 1, 3. Now, upon the first day of the week, very early in the morning, they came unto the sepulchre, bringing the spices which they had prepared, and certain others with them. And they found the stone rolled away from t/ie sepulchre. And they entered in, and found not the body of the Lord Jesus.
John, xx. 1. The first day of the week cometh Mary Magdalene early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulchre, and seeth the stone taken away from the sepulchre.
10. Q. Was there any thing remarkable in the day on which he rose?
A. It was the day on which God had before designed he should rise. And therefore on this day, the sheaf of the first-fruits, by which their harvest was to be consecrated, was lifted up before God, among the Jews. Lev. xxiii. 10. Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When ye be come into the land which I give unto you, and shall reap the harvests thereof, then ye shall bring a sheaf of the first-fruits of your harvest unto the priest, and he shall wave the sheaf before the Lord, to be accepted for you. To signify, that Christ, our first-fruits, should on this day be raised up by God from the dead, and so become a surety to us of our future resurrection. See Rom. xi. 16. For if the first-fruit be holy, the lump is also holy: and if the root be holy, so are the branches. 1 Cor. xv. 20, 23. But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the first-fruits of. them that slept. But every man in his own order: Christ the first-fruits; afterwards they that are Christ's at his coming.
11. Q. What is the special importance of this Article to us?
A. It is very great: inasmuch as, first, it does, beyond contradiction, confirm the Divine authority of our Blessed Lord. Rom. i. 4. Declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the Spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead. And the truth of oar religion: and, in the next place, does assure us, that the price of our redemption was fully paid by him. Rom. iv. 25. Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification, viii. 33, 34. Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea, rather that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. And is a pledge to us, that as Christ was raised from the dead, so shall our mortal bodies be quickened also, by the Spirit of Christ, which dwelleth in us. Rom. vi. 5, 9. viii. 11.
Proofs Subjoined.—Acts, xiii. 33. God hath fulfilled the same unto us their children, in that he hath raised up Jesus again; as it is also written in the second Psalm, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee. 2 Cor. xiii. 4. For though he was crucified through weakness, yet he liveth by the power of God. For we also are weak in him, but we shall live with him by the power of God toward you. 1 Pet. i. 3. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.
Of his Ascension into Heaven, and Session at God's
right hand. 1. Q. How did our Blessed Lord dispose of himself after that he was risen from the dead?
A. He continued upon earth forty days with his disciples, both to confirm them in their belief of his resurrection, (John, xx. 19, 25, 27. Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you. The other disciples, therefore, said unto Thomas, we have seen the Lord. But he said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe. Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands, and reach hither thy hand and thrust it into my side; and be not faithless, but believe).
And to instruct them more fully in all those things, wbich they were afterwards to preach to the world, Acts, i. 3. To whom also he shewed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God.
And then at the end of them he ascended into heaven: where he now sitteth at the right hand of God, the Father Almighty.