This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated.1896 Excerpt: ... CHAPTER IX THE MESSIANIC IDEAL OF JESUS AT THIRTY YEARS OF AGE IMMEDIATELY after the revelation of the baptism the temptation began. He was the Messiah! But others had believed themselves to be the Messiah and had been mistaken! The great "Hope of Israel" had thrown many of his contemporaries into frenzy. Was he to be one of these? Was he in his turn to be the subject of a tremendous illusion? And if he was not mad, was he not to become so? The minds of his compatriots were becoming excited, their imaginations inflamed; the great word "Messiah " had led astray more than one ill-balanced mind. Some had dared to appropriate it to themselves, and they had ended in insanity. And now he in his turn had received the dreadful heritage. He was to follow in the same way! The temptation, the danger, were supreme. He would avoid the danger, and triumph over the temptation. But for this he must undergo a great conflict. It was to be an inward battle, from which he was to come off conqueror. The Gospel stories1 have brought down to us its sublime and magnificent echo. For indeed the temptation was not an isolated and momentary experience. It extended over all that part of Jesus' life which immediately followed his baptism. The Evangelists assign to it a duration of forty days. The number is symbolical, like the whole narrative. During forty days, and no doubt a much longer time, Jesus had been asking himself what kind of Messiah he should be. The picturesque narrative of the Evangelists admirably describes the conflict through which his soul was passing, and the struggles which he underwent. For some time past he had been gradually assuming an attitude of growing reserve with respect of the "Hope of Israel." Before his baptism, during the years of i Matt. iv. 1 ff.; Luk...
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