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   He descended into hell.



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Calvin (on the descent into hell from the Institutes)

Caroline Divines 
Pearson - On the Creed


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J. Wesley's Notes (Gospel)
J. Wesley's Notes (Epistle)

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Blunt's Commentary

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Matthew Henry (Gospel)
Matthew Henry (Epistle)


Additional Materials

Keble poem - Easter Eve from The Christian Year










GRANT, O Lord, that as we are baptized into the death of thy blessed Son our Saviour Jesus Christ, so by continual mortifying our corrupt affections we may be buried with him; and that, through the grave, and gate of death, we may pass to our joyful resurrection; for his merits, who died, and was buried, and rose again for us, thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

THE EPISTLE.  1 S. Peter 3. 17 
IT is better, if the will of God be so, that ye suffer for well doing, than for evil doing.  For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit: by which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison; which sometime were disobedient, when once the long-suffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing; wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water.  The like figure whereunto, even baptism, doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God), by the resurrection of Jesus Christ: who is gone into heaven, and is on the right hand of God; angels, and authorities, and powers being made subject unto him.

THE GOSPEL.  S. Matth. 27. 57 
WHEN the even was come, there came a rich man of Arimathaea, named Joseph, who also himself was Jesus' disciple: He went to Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus.  Then Pilate commanded the body to be delivered.  And when Joseph had taken the body, he wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, and laid it in his own new tomb, which he had hewn out in the rock; and he rolled a great stone to the door of the sepulchre, and departed.  And there was Mary Magdalene, and the other Mary, sitting over against the sepulchre.  Now the next day, that followed the day of the preparation, the chief priests and Pharisees came together unto Pilate, saying, Sir, we remember that that deceiver said, while he was yet alive, After three days I will rise again.  Command therefore that the sepulchre be made sure until the third day, lest his disciples come by night, and steal him away, and say unto the people, He is risen from the dead: so the last error shall be worse than the first.  Pilate said unto them, Ye have a watch: go your way, make it as sure as ye can.  So they went, and made the sepulchre sure, sealing the stone, and setting a watch.


  INTROIT.  Ps 42:1-7
LIKE as the hart desireth the water-brooks, / so longeth my soul after thee, O God.
2 My soul is athirst for God, yea, even for the living God: / when shall I come to appear before the presence of God?
3 My tears have been my meat day and night, / while they daily say unto me, 'Where is now thy God?'
4 These things will I remember as I pour out my soul within me: / how I went with the multitude, and brought them forth into the house of God;
5 With the voice of praise and thanksgiving, / a multitude keeping holy-day.
6 Why art thou so full of heaviness, O my soul? / and why art thou so disquieted within me?
7 Put thy trust in God, for I will yet give him thanks, / who is the help of my countenance, and my God.

GRADUAL.  Ps 42:8-14  
MY soul is vexed within me; therefore will I remember thee / from the land of Jordan, from Hermon, and the Little Hill.
9 One deep calleth another, because of the noise of thy torrents; / all thy waves and thy billows are gone over me.
10 The Lord hath granted his loving-kindness in the day-time; / and in the night-season will  I sing of him, and make my prayer unto the God of my life.
11 I will say unto God my rock, 'Why hast thou forgotten me? / why go I thus heavily, while the enemy oppresseth me?'
12 My bones are smitten asunder, while mine enemies reproach me, / while they say daily unto me, 'Where is now thy God?'
13 Why art thou so vexed, O my soul? / and why art thou so disquieted within me?
14 O put thy trust in God, for I will yet give him thanks, / who is the help of my countenance, and my God.

Additional Propers for Eucharistic Devotions