From this time forward the new moons, which till then had been at least as important as the Sabbath and were celebrated by sacrificial feasts as occasions of religious gladness, fall into insignificance, except in the conservative temple ritual.
The steps by which the practice of resting from labour on the Lord's day instead of on the Sabbath was established in Christendom and received civil as well as ecclesiastical sanction are dealt with under Sunday; it is enough to observe here that this practice is naturally and even necessarily connected with the religious observance of the Lord's day as a day of worship and religious gladness, and is in full accordance with the principles laid down by Jesus in His criticism of the Sabbath of the Scribes.
Fill our hearts with joy and gladness, that ever having of all things a sufficiency, we may superabound in all good works, in Christ Jesus our Lord, &c.'" The writer then enjoins that, "if two or three other virgins are present, they also shall give thanks over the bread set out, and join in the prayers.
This month, Bede says, was the same as the mensis paschalis, " when the old festival was observed with the gladness of a new solemnity."
The streets were hung with rich cloths of silk arras and tapestry; the aldermen and principal men of the city threw out of their windows handsful of gold and silver, to signify their gladness at the king's return; and the conduits ran with wine, both white and red.
But while there is in Luke's Gospel this strain of asceticism -as to many in modern times it will appear to be-the prevailing spirit is gentle and tender, and there is in it a note of spiritual gladness, which is begun by the song and the messages of angels and the hymns and rejoicing of holy men and women, accompanying the birth of the Christ (chaps.
46 we read that, " the faithful continued steadfastly with one accord in the temple "; at the same time " breaking bread at home they partook of food with gladness and singleness of heart, praising God."
And gladness springs up within him on his realizing that, and joy arises to him thus gladdened, and so rejoicing all his frame becomes at ease, and being thus at ease he is filled with a sense of peace, and in that peace his heart is stayed."9 To have realized the Truths, and traversed the Path; to have broken the Bonds, put an end to the Intoxications, and got rid of the Hindrances, is to have attained the ideal, the Fruit, as it is called, of Arahatship. One might fill columns with the praises, many of them among the most beautiful passages in Pali poetry and prose, lavished on this condition of mind, the state of the man made perfect according to the Buddhist faith.
As for lights in the churches, he adds that " in all the churches of the East, whenever the gospel is to be read, lights are lit, though the sun be rising (jam sole rutilante), not in order to disperse the darkness, but as a visible sign of gladness (ad signum laetitiae demonstrandum)."
He is poor and helpless and lonely now, but before another April education will have brought light and gladness into Tommy's life.
They did not know for some time after my recovery that the cruel fever had taken my sight and hearing; taken all the light and music and gladness out of my little life.