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Jesus Beautiful in His Tears.

Jesus Beautiful in His Tears.

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And Jesus wept (St. John xi. 35).


And Jesus wept (St. John xi. 35).

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Published by: GLENN DALE PEASE on Jul 03, 2014
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved


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JESUS BEAUTIFUL I HIS TEARS.BY SISTER TERESA GERTRUDEAnd Jesus wept (St. John xi. 35). THE shortest verse in the entire Gospel narrative contains a mystery of Divine love, an expression of Divine sympathy which eternity itself will not be long enough fully to develop before the contemplation of the saints. It records the shedding, not of the Precious Blood which was necessary for the redemption of the world, but of the tears of Him Who was God, at the sight of human sorrow. Before, however, we consider the particular occasions on which those sacred tears were poured forth, let us pause to reflect a little on this unvoiced language of the emotions in general. There is an abundant overflow of tears in the world which neither glorifies God nor purifies the soul. We cannot be expected to speak of these, since they have not the slightest connection with our present subject. But there are tears which have their well-spring in hearts broken with sorrow for sin, with compassion for Jesus and His Blessed Mother, with sympathy for the griefs of others, and with bitter lamentation over the loss of souls. There are tears also, less supernatural in their source, but such as may still be to the highest degree supernaturalized by uniting them with the tears of God Incarnate. In our Lord we might consider three motives for His weeping. He might 440 JESUS BEAUTIFUL have been moved to shed tears of compunction, or again of compassion, or once more of pure anguish in His Agony, and in His dereliction upon the Cross.
Of the second only of the three is mention made in the Gospel history. The first and the third may be distinctly inferred from the language of St. Paul to the Hebrews, wherein the Priesthood of our Lord is described. "Who in the days of His flesh, with a strong cry and tears, offering up prayers and suppli cations to Him Who was able to save Him from death, was heard for His reverence." 1 That Jesus shed tears of compunction we may justly believe when we recall that He assumed not merely the form of a servant, but took upon Himself the penalty due to sin. ow, com punction is one of the penances of sin, inflicting an interior wound in the heart; just as exterior penance externally wounds the body, and derives from the former all its true efficacy. If we wish to behold compunction in its perfection it would be necessary to penetrate into the Heart of Jesus. His knowledge and the magnitude of His love for His Eternal Father were the sources whence it flowed, and when, we remember that the vision of sin lay ever before Him not as a thing external to Himself, but even as a reality carried into the very sanctuary of His all-holy Soul, so as to force the anguished cry from Him : " Save Me, O God, for the waters are come in even unto My Soul" we may form some faint idea of the fathom less depths in the immensity of His sorrow. 2 The words in the Epistle to the Hebrews, quoted above, are worthy of more prolonged attention. And we must, in the first place, observe that Jesus was said to have been heard, not with the effect of His being 1 Hebrews v. 7. 2 p sa lm Ixviii. r. I HIS TEARS. 441
saved from death, but in this, that His Sacrifice was accepted, and that sinners, for His sake, were redeemed. The vision of sin was stretched out clear to the eye of our Lord throughout the whole of the three-and-thirty years of His life, and He was the predestined victim of sin, as well as the actual bearer of the consequences of sin, during the whole of that time. Who then shall measure the tears of compunction that were shed by Him in secret; who count the agonies of grief He ex perienced for the sins of mankind, to the extent of their seeming to crush Him beneath their weight. Of Him, before all, are those words of the Royal Prophet to be understood: " Thou hast set My tears in Thy sight." 1 Blessed tears which have merited for us such rich graces of contrition, such manifold pardons, and which have rendered our penitential tears acceptable for the purifying of our souls ! It is to be believed that during the Agony in the Garden, the night before He died, all the sorrows of His life and every possible cause of grief were present to our Lord. His Soul was in an agony so terrible that it drew the sweat of Blood from the pores of His Sacred Body. But if so, did no tears spring forth from those sacred eyes and mingle with the flow of Blood ere the awful fiat was pronounced ? " With a strong cry and tears, with prayers and supplications, . . . He was heard for His reverence." Again, in the supreme hour of His life, when, abandoned by His Father, He gave utterance to that piteous appeal upon the Cross : " My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me? " Surely we are allowed to believe that the "strong cry" may have been accompanied by at least the rising of tears into their fount, in that combined outpouring of His 1 Psalm Iv. 9.

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