Thursday, August 18, 2005

On August 18th, 1872...
Venerable John Henry Newman, C.O., preached a sermon, of which the following notes survive:

Christ's Presence in the World

1. INTROD.—We have read, Sunday after Sunday, as today, of our Lord's miracles; but did we see Him, I do not think that [the miracles] would most strike and subdue us.

2. Not His works, but Himself.

3. But here I explain something. Strange to say, it was His will that, seen by casual spectators, He should seem like another man, Isa. liii. 3 ; and hence John i. 5, 10 , and Mark vi. 3 [Note 28]. And the Samaritan woman, John iv. And this specially so in the case of bad men, Luke xxiii. 11 , John xix. 9 .

4. When we had seen Him two or three times, if we were not utterly dead to truth we should find that He had made a deep impression on us, on looking back, though we did not perceive it at the time, Luke xxiv. (Emmaus).

5. Next, supposing we could stay and gaze on Him, then what would first strike us would be His awful infinite repose, the absence of all excitement, etc., etc. All that is told us of Him, all His words and works, brings out this—and doubtless His aspect.

6. Next, if we could still look on, if we could see His eyes, two things would strike us; first, His seeing us through and through. Hence He is often said to 'look.' Mark iii. 5, 'And looking round about on them with anger'; ib. viii. 33, 'Who, turning about and seeing his disciples, threatened Peter,' etc.; ib. xi. 11, 'And he entered into Jerusalem, and having viewed all things round about.'

7. Secondly, compassion. Mark x. 21, 'And Jesus looking on him loved him'; Luke xxii. 61, 'And the Lord turning, looked on Peter: and Peter remembered the word of the Lord.'

8. And then when He began to speak! the tones of His voice! John vii. 46, 'The ministers answered, Never did man speak like this man'; Matt. vii. 28, 'And it came to pass, when Jesus had fully ended these words, the people were in admiration at his doctrine: For he was teaching them as one having power.'

9. Hence He draws men. Matt. ix. 9, 'And He saw a man sitting in the custom house, named Matthew: and he said to him, Follow me. And he rose up, and followed him.' Virtue going out of Him. Mark v. 30, 'And immediately, Jesus knowing in himself the virtue that had proceeded from him, turning to the multitude, said, Who hath touched me ?' ib. vi. 56, 'And whithersoever he entered, into towns, or into villages, or cities, they laid the sick in the streets, and besought him that they might touch the hem of his garment: and as many as touched him were made whole.'

10. All this, even though He did no miracle.

11. This is what we must look for in heaven.

12. And yearn for it in the Blessed Sacrament.


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