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Reality in Religious Manifestations.

Reality in Religious Manifestations.

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Published by glennpease
BY F. D. HUNTINGTON, D. D.,

SIMPLICITY AND GODLY SINCERITY. 2 Cor. I. 12.
BY F. D. HUNTINGTON, D. D.,

SIMPLICITY AND GODLY SINCERITY. 2 Cor. I. 12.

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Published by: glennpease on Mar 24, 2014
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 REALITY IN RELIGIOUS MANIFESTATIONS. F. D. HUNTINGTON, D.D SIMPLICITY AND GODLY SINCERITY. 2 Cor. I. 12. I TAKE these words out from their connection, and pre- sent them alone, because the rest of the passage is less suited to my purpose. It is enough to notice that the Apostle mentions these qualities as attributes of the gen- uine Christian. He thinks the whole Gospel he is set to preach and defend is more likely to get a hearing from the world's common sense, and to lodge itself in the world's convictions, for being presented in the spirit and manner of those traits. Whatever may be his own in- firmities and short-comings, he rejoices in the conscious- ness that he has been honest. Gifts and accomplish- ments aside, he can say withT)ut immodesty that he and his associates have at least this legitimate claim to confi- dence, — the testimony of a good conscience that in sim- plicity and godly sincerity they have had their conversa- tion in the world. Had it been otherwise, the planting
 
of the Church might have taken damage from their ob- liquity, and the tardy triumph of the Christian ideas might be chargeable upon the messengers. Such con- gratulation is not pride, but Christian dignity; not self- laudation, but self-respect, which is the opposite of self- REALITY IN RELIGIOUS MANIFESTATIONS. 17 laudation ; not boasting, but gratitude to the gi-ace of God. You will readily recall those aspects of the Christian faith which offer it to us as the Supreme Reality. Real in the positive and eternal objects it reveals ; real in de- termining our relations to that Original and Infinite Spirit, diffused through all things, creating all, sustaining all, the ground of all life, and thought, and act, and hope ; real in the style of its address, the tone of its appeal, and its whole bearing toward our humanity ; real in its ex- press adaptations of supply and satisfaction to personal and universal wants of human natm-e ; and real in the
 
palpable ends it proposes, as righteousness, charity, benef- icence, for earth and heaven, — Christianity cannot be more viciously misunderstood or foolishly maltreated, than when it is thrust out of the circle of solid interests, and held at the arm's length of suspicion. The Church is a vital, natural, rational, precisely because it is a divine organization. It has its roots in God's miracles precisely because of the depth and intensity of man's need of it. Its fibres are all intertwined with the fibres of human breasts. The cover is not going to be taken off, some time, to show us an ingenious contrivance of mechanical wires, springs, and pulleys, for working up stupendous stage-efiects of Christian impression and Christian his- tory. The tapestry is not going to open, and terrify us with some ghostly apparition. The sun is not going to rise and scatter these sacramental hosts, like airy armies of morning mist and cloud; We stand on substance, or there is' no substance, and the universe itself is spectral. To this way of welcoming the divine message, there are unquestionably hinderances, partly clinging to the weaker or worse side of human nature, and partly a facti-

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