The mission—On the way

The mission—On the way

Mission of the Twelve. Instructions.

(The Gospel History, Section 59)

And they departed, and went throughout the villages, preaching the gospel, and healing everywhere. And they preached that men should repent. And they cast out many devils, and anointed with oil many that were sick, and healed them.

And it came to pass when Jesus had made an end of commanding his twelve disciples, he departed thence to teach and preach in their cities.

The mission—On the way

(The Saviour of the World, Vol III Book IV Poem XLIII)

The men went forth wherever highways led:
In open ways these went as did their Lord,
For by the wayside all the cities sate;
And hidden villages by winding paths
Joined them, too, to the channel carried life,
The road all sorts of people went upon;—
The village folk, the daintier men of towns,
Scribes, Pharisees and publicans, grave priests,
And they who tilled the land; rude waggons drawn
By patient large-eyed oxen, slow of pace.
The man who stands and ponders, imaged sees—
In the thick-peopled plains, the cities fair,
The traffic of the road,—all the wide world
Enacting all its ways.

These two who pass,

With speech incessant, gesticulation free,
Too rapt are they t’ observe those roadside sights
Had otherwhile amused them mightily:
And all the wayfarers, concerned were they
Each with his own affairs, nor took much heed
Of what spake they, the Two, walked without staff
Or scrip, or aught the common traveller bears
To ease him on his way. Afire, their hearts,
With words of life they carried from the Christ!
Trembled they for the thought of prisons, stripes,
All perils them awaited? “Freely give,
For freely have ye gotten,” was His word;
And burned their hearts as they told o’er the coins
Of priceless truth they carried—mighty freight!
Which first to spend—that simple tale of Sower,
Or Christ’s words of the New Law and the Old,
Or tale of some great sign their eyes had seen?
As purse compact so full no single coin
Can we dislodge but all come pouring forth,
E’en so these men, who such full treasure held,
Scarce could they pick out small coin for the way!
“Let’s take the path to yonder village; lo,
That word most fit shall come to us at need!”

St. Mark vi. 12, 13.
St. Luke ix. 6.