Verse 52. "The disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Ghost." - Though in the world they had tribulation, yet in Christ they had peace; and, while engaged in their Master's work, they always had their Master's wages. The happiness of a genuine Christian lies far beyond the reach of earthly disturbances, and is not affected by the changes and chances to which mortal things are exposed. The martyrs were more happy in the flames than their persecutors could be on their beds of down.
St. Paul's sermon at Antioch has been thus analyzed.
1. His prologue, ver. 16, addressed to those who fear God.
2. His narrative of God's goodness to Israel:
1. In their deliverance from Egypt. 2. In their support in the wilderness. 3. In his giving them the land of Canaan. 4. In the judges and kings which he had given for their governors, ver. 7-22.
3. His proposition, that Jesus was the Christ, the saviour of the world, ver. 23.
4. The illustration of this proposition, proving its truth: 1. From Christ's stock and family, ver. 23. 2. From the testimony of his forerunner, ver. 24. 3. From the resurrection of Christ, chap. xiii. 30; which was corroborated with the testimony of many Galileans, ver. 31, and of the prophets, David, ver. 33, 35, and Isaiah, ver. 34.
5. He anticipates objections, relative to the unjust condemnation, death and burial of Christ, ver. 27-29.
6. His epilogue, in which he excites his audience to embrace the Gospel on two considerations:
1. The benefits which they receive who embrace the Gospel, ver. 38, 39. 2. The danger to which they were exposed who should despise and reject it, ver. 40, 41.