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, "And the common people heard him gladly." — Mark 12 : 37. SOME are born great, some achieve greatness, and' some have greatness thrust upon 'em." As the world speaks of greatness, an heir to England's throne is born great, and when his crowning time comes, greatness is thrust upon him. But men like Demosthenes, Pericles, Alexander the Great, Cicero, Julius Cassar, Oliver Cromwell, Shakespeare, Milton, Patrick Henry, Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, and Gladstone achieve greatness. Many of those who are '^'horn great'' and "have greatness thrust upon 'em" by the laws that bolster crowns and thrones, are not truly great. Many of them stand in history am'ong the world's contemptible weaklings, and were great only as monsters of iniquity. He only is truly great who achieves it by dint of intrinsic worth, whether he inherits a throne, or, by his worth, creates a throne in the world's judgment and affection. Ko man was ever a great commoner who did not by intellectuality and heart-power win his place in the minds and hearts of the people. In the highest and best sense, Jesus was the world's great commoner when on earth, and still sways the masses with a power uniquely his own.. He was emphatically a man of the masses. He was bom, reared, trained among the common people — ^that is, among the masses of humianity, rather than among those of the court circles. He breathed the pure atmosphere on the hills which God had reserved for flowers, birds, and men, rather than that of the smoke-beclouded city. He lived among pure people who thought God^s thoughts and still believed in the Lord God of Elijah. He not only beheld their toil, but, by his own yokemaking, learned to bear the yoke with them — a, hard yoke^ — ^that one day he might be able to give tO' them an easy yoke. He was not only "touched" by, but was pierced and pressed by their infirmities.
When a public teacher, he became the central figure of his times and country; he drew to himself the attention of all classes of society. Any class in society would gladly have taken him as their particularly bright star had he permitted it. But he moved on in his quiet dignity, the representative of humanity. When the throng would have made him king he rejected the crown. When here and there one of high estate desired fellowship with Jesus, the individual had to break caste and come to Jesus; Jesus never went into caste for individuals. He was distinctly humanity's man, and while all heard him, and studied him to some extent, it was the so-called common people who heard him gladly. Jesus wished to reach and save the world. Hence he became the ally of no class. He had thoughts to give to the individual, or the masses, as occasion suggested. He had sympathy to give to earth's sorrowing millions. And his thoughts and feelings would finally create a peculiar people, a chosen generation, a royal priesthood. He had seeing power and lifting power for humanity. He proposed to lift humanity by truth and love.. His truth had leveling power in it, to lift the poor and humble, and to humble the haughty. To save a world, which he pronounced lost, was his consuming purpose — and to this ideal he was consecrated in life and death, by life and death. He was not undertaking for some province, or race, or country, merely, but for all races, in all countries, through all coming centuries of human history. He was Homo — ^had entered into all humanity, and would so enter into all of its problems as to make it impossible henceforth to have the history of the race written without writing especially of him. To write a life of him one must write of him as a son, a missioner, a servant, a man, a brother, a friend, a churchman, a statesman, a philosopher, an orator, an ethical teacher, a reformer, a savior, a judge, the G-od of man, the lover of truth and righteousness, and the implacable foe to all evil, the
332 THE AMERICAN" BAPTIST PULPIT. world-lifter, and the victor over all wrong. The ever-loving one, but also the nncompromising representative of hnmianity, who must march front till all the nations of earth shall voluntarily crown him
as the supreme one in the repiiblic of thought, acknowledging his dictum, enthroning him in the souls of men, crowning him' as Lord of love I JESUS^ BRAIN The people listened to Jesus because he had something to say. It takes intellectuality, plus genuine interest in them, to reach and hold the masses. Jesus is often written of and spoken of as the embodiment of moral greatness. He was this, but also the world^s greatest intellectuality^ Six months before his death one of his enemies said : "N"ever man spake like this man.-" The one who said this of him had gone armed with a warrant to arrest him. Jesus spake to him, he folded his document, went back and said to the chief officers : "I did not arrest him because he talked, and never man spake as this man." It was not the result of oratory or elocution, neither of a threat, but of something overpowering in the utterance of the man. Paul has been called "the synonym of intellectual greatness.^^ But the truths about which he reasoned with logic set on fire, Jesus had announced. The difference between Jesus and Paul intellectually is vast; the difference between their thought is that which exists between a creative mind and one which expounds what another has originated. Jesus^ intellectuality has often been weighed, but never found wanting. In it was no self-glorification. He was very humble. He met with no life too humble to receive his attention. Yet he showed no pride of humilit}^, for in speaking of one of the great intellects of the ages he said: "A greater than Solomon is here." He said this perfectly unconscious of egotism, perfectly conscious of the truthfulness of the statement. Jesus was not a cloistered theorist. He had no hobby. He moved among men, touching every phase of thought in the age in which he lived. He touched the thought of the politics, philosophy, sociology, and religion of his times. He dealt with Pharisaical tradition; Sadducean philosophy, rationalism, skepticism, skeptical scribes, with their subtleties, world-rulers, with their society and po-
JESUS^ THE WORLD^S GREAT COMMONER. 333 litical deceptions, the poor in their wretchedness, the rich in their luxury, with friends in their love and with his enemies in their hatred, as one in their midst, knowing their needs, and Ms own lofty mission. In all this he never made a wrong estimate of a person. With calm dignity he gave his estimate of all these conditions, and you instinctively agree with him. His discrimination was just. Whether truth-seekers or enemies interrogated him, you feel that he gave the righteous answers ; and they were given immediately — ^just announced. When the woman of crime was brought to him, her accusers expected to entrap him. If he said not to stone her, they would cry : "He opposeth the law of Moses.^' If he said. Stone her, they would cry: "He opposeth the law of Caesar." He replies: "Let Mm that is sinless cast the first stone." It was neither a question of Jewish nor of Eoman law, but of justice. Jesus' answer was triumphantly righteous. So, too, when he cries out, "Woe unto you scribes, Pharisees, hypocrites," you feel that their h}^ocrisy deserved this burst of righteous indignation. Great pMlosophers and jurists often study long over questions submitted to them, give their answers, and then find themselves and others dissatisfied with their answers. But however great the issues involved in questions presented to Jesus, he at once announced his decision, and you feel that from it there can be no appeal. Outside of Christ the world appeals from court to court, from the arbitrament of reason to the thunders of death, but before the decisions of Christ the world stands dumb — th&re is no appeal! To study the question : What distinctively new thoughts did Jesus contribute to the world^s thought-treasury? would be to thresh old straw needlessly. He gave much new thought to the world, but Ms greatest contribution was his exposition of truth on old questions. JESUS AND SIN
Every tribe and every nation of our race has had some form or forms of religion. This fact is an acknowledgment of Deity. All religion has been an acknowledgment of sin and an effort to get rid of it. TMs is shown by sacrifices. This is true by whatever
334 THE AMERICAN BAPTIST PULPIT. name "sin" was called. The question of sin, then, has been a basal one in human thought and religion. Brahmanism, one of the oldest systems of religion known to us in the hum^an struggle, except that of the Hebrews, grappled with this question. But how ? Its writers wrote their hymns to please their gods, whose favor was desired. With Brahmans, Deity is not the creator. Brahmans: worship the phenomena of nature. They created innumerable gods, and, because of the fear of sin, worshipped these helpless gods which they had created by their own minds. The greatest god with them was Brahma — a pantheistic impersonality. Brahmanism^s greatest offer to man is final absorption into Brahm — ^everlasting unconsciousness. The system recognizes sin and its blight, but does not tell how to get rid of it and its vices. The best Brahm'anism can offer to struggling, longing, aching souls is final unconsciousness, or transmigration intO' some other form of life for yet other ages of sorrow and suffering, and death again. Such words as Brahmanismi could give to the souls of men could not he final. It left the soul's deepest questions unanswered. Buddhism. — ^This arose as the reaction against Brahmanism. It denied the divinity of the Brahmianie gods, and proclaimed a system of philosophy for the betterment of the human race. "Budd*" means "enlightened,'' and this name was given to Gautama, who^ was bom in India about 623 B. C, At seventeen years of age he was led to study questions concerning misery, suffering, death. He wished to find deliverance from these. He said: "Birth is the cause of misery, old age, and death. Ignorance is the cause of existence; hence, remove ignorance and you remove existence, and with it all the sorrows of men." But this system still left men sorrowing and dying. Buddhism did not have a proper conception of G-od
on the one hand, nor of sin on the other. What would a thief, or a libertine, or a murderer care for such a jelly-fish system of teaching? Or, what inspiration or consolation was there for those who were struggling for something better than they had? The result was: Eat, drink, be merry, for to-morrow thou mayest die. The chief teachings were: " ^Do nothing,' ^see nothing,' ^aim^ at nothing,' that the mind may finally enter into eternal nothingness."
JESUS,. TEE ttoeld's gkeat commoxeb. 335 This soiiiids strangely to us. It is as if an old man should say to his boy: 'M.y son, work hard; wear patched clothing; save all your money; eat breadcrust; drink water; gather lightwood, and by its blaze study till one o^clock at night. Do this till you are thirty years old, then you will be sufficiently educated to become a firstclass fool the balance of your life! Or, it is like a nation that would work hundreds of years to build great school systems, great laws, great navies, and vast wealth, in order to be savage enough to live on parched com and raw meat, and to dress in deerskins decorated with feathers, painted with human blood I Confucianism. — About 550 B. C, when tyranny and anarchy were ranning riotously : when women were slaves to Libertines, and law was another name for license, Confucius was bom. He grew up and became a public teacher. His teax^hings were mainly two : viz., "'Have confidence in the goodness of human nature ;'' second, "Obey your superiors.'" The first was impossible. The second led to serfdom. Look at China and India — ^not yet in the swaddling clothes of true civilization, and judge of the lifting power of Confucianism. All these teachers had some elements of truth. But they saw through a glass darkly. Contrast, on these points, the teachings of Jesus. He said: "8m is the cause of sorrow and suffering, get rid of
sin. But you cannot rid yourselves of sin. You cannot work yourselves good; nor suffer yourselves good, nor buy yourselves good. But I'm sinless, and God, the Creator, gives me for your sins." He said : ''There is a God, a judgment, and everlasting life after death. A life of glory for those whose sins are forgiven, an everlasting hell for those who are impenitent, furthermore, you must be cleansed in this life or not at aU." He said of himself : 'T am the truth, the life and the way." And, think of it, you cannot imagine Jesus not knowing the way of righteousness or the truth. To this he added the resurrection of the body, and the union of friends after death. -When Jesus thus spake, it was like the voice of many thunders turned into minstrel music. It commanded a hearing, and soothed aching hearts. Men and women cried: 'Tt is true, Lord, we are mined by sin. What shall we do?" Answer: '''Eepent of sin.
336 THE AMEKICAN BAPTIST PULPIT. believe on me, and do what I sa}^, and you shall be saved." The great philosophers and the unlettered could alike understand him. Jesus taught men to keep their minds pure, souls pure, bodi^ pure. He taught that which gave the souls of men peace — ^perfect peace. Confucius says : "Trust man's goodness." Jesus sa,js : "Trust in God.'' Confucius says : "'Change your life." Jesus sa}'s : "Come to God and let him give you a new heart." Confucius says : "Annihilation." Jesus says: "Everlasting being, happy, or miserable, according to the relation you sustain to me." These were new notes on the ears of the human race. I^othing approached the intellectual grasp of Christ before or since his day. His thoughts have freed man's soul and body wherever they have had free course. They have freed woman — soul and body. They have lifted up the common individuals and nations. Where Christ's thoughts have gone, the common and the unclean have become cleansed and uncommon. He grasped the whole world in his thoughts, and said to his believing ones : "Go, tell all nations my thoughts." Do you wonder that the masses heard him gladly ? Truly, he spake a-s never man spake.
In those days there had not come the telegraph, the telephone, the printing press, the daily paper, the steam engine, nor the electric motor. Yet, of him, the news quickly spread from lip to lip till far and near he was the theme of conversation, and people in streams of thousands went on long journeys to see his face, and hear his words. Imagine ourselves without railroads, telegraph}-, the daily papers, and all their allied conveniences. Then imagine some teacher in the streets of Columbus, Ohio, so wonderful that people are moving afoot by thousands from Cincinnati, Cleveland, Toledo, Pittsburg, Indianapolis, and many points between, to hear him, and you will catch some idea of Jesus^ imprint on his times. JESUS' HEART Jesus might have been the intellectuality he was, and yet have repelled the world. Thought is intimately associated with feeling. Great intellectualities have built impenetrable walls between themselves and the people. He who would bless the world in a great sense needs more than brains — he needs a heart that beats in s}Tn-
JESUS^ THE WORLD^S GREAT COMMONER. 337 patli}^ witli men — a heart that bears in itself humanity's burdens. An ''Iron Chancellor' may cause his own nation to breathe the spirit of independence and war, but a great Commoner like Gladstone helps a world to understand the superior greatness of peace and universal brotherhood. Jesus had the perfect, sympathetic heart. Could it be said: "Xever man spake like this man ;" so it could be said : ''Never man felt like this man. His moral nature was perfect. This cannot be said of all brilliant men. Some men of great brains are moral monsters. Jesus^ character was as lofty as his teachings. He was his doctrine's illustration perfectly. He was ^%oly, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners.'^ Yet, "was tried in all points like as we are, yet without sin." Jesus came to make the world think clearly on many great points, but he would lead the world upward morally to right relations with God, hence would give the
world great moral impulses to render its thinking constructive rather than destructive. Hence, to God, to man, to truth, he must sustain a consistent relation. Did he tell us more of God and man than we ever knew before? So he must show to us more of God and man than we ever saw apart from him. Have you ever seen an absolutely perfect painting? Have you seen a perfect human character? Grant that your ideals are imperfectly conceived; have 3^ou met in flesh and blood your ideals? Verily, nay. We have seen characters who were great and good. But they were not perfect in goodness and greatness. But you cannot imagine Jesus being not perfect. You cannot detect a weak point in his character. During his public career his enemies charged him with being "a gluttonous man and a wine bibber''; he was accused of being in league with a demon ; he was accused of receiving sinners and eating with them; of being an enemy of his country; of being hostile to Cssar; of blasphemy against Godi, by claiming equality with God; and of many things in keeping with these. To but two of these charges did he plead guilty : viz., that of receiving sinners and eating with them, and of being the Son of God. That was because he loved sinners, and would save them. To all the other accusations he
338 ^ THE AMERICAN" BAPTIST PULPIT. had but to give his answer in order to stand acquitted. Thus his moral nature was perfect.. His nature was perfectly balanced. One element of his intellect or nature was not abnornially developed at the' expense of other elements. In this respect he stands absolutely alone in the world's history. Many men are great and good, except in spots — each somewhere has fatal limitations and weaknesses. Jesus was spotless. John, who leaned his head on Jesus' bosom^ — was good — but Jesus was perfect. For example, we find great and good men and women, overcareful as to some duties, careless^ as to others. Not so with Jesus. With reference to duty, in things both great and
small, he moved with an equally adjusted balance. He had neither wealth nor life's comforts, yet he did not complain, and fed the thousands. His sense of honor was keen. He was often insulted, but was never bitter nor revengeful. He kept in mind his relation to God, to man, and to his own purpose to bless and uplift the race. If men insulted him, it was the result of sin in them; hence, he would pray for them. He measured each mian by eternal possibilities. He was conscious of human conditions, as pain, hunger, weariness of body, sorrow of soul, yet none of these things unbalanced his heart. He craved the love of his friends, but never asked one of them to' pray for him. Before men he stood absolutely independent, but before God he bowed in perfect humility. He was a Hebrew who loved his country and his kinsmen. He honored their ancient laws, but cut across their traditions. He worshipped in their temple, but cleansed it. He paid temple tax, but taught that each worshipful heart, is God^s temple. He loved Jerusalem' and its inhabitants, and wept over them, but he was more than Jew. He was not a man of the world, but the man for all the world. He had in him all the Jewish greatness, with' none of the Jewish weakness. As a son, brother, friend, he was ideal. But neither kinship nor friendship could prevail on him to swerve a hair's breadth from dut}^ His "Father's work" was his engrossing passion. When Irinsmen and friends would stay him from that work, they could not. To Calvary he would go, for he was the son of God in character, the son of man in sympathy. By life and
JESUS, THE WOELD^S GREAT COMMONER. 339 death be illustrated love. The humblest waif came to him with assurance. The strong man, in need of more strength, came to him. The tear-stained mother came to him, and to him came the Magdalene. The children playing in the streets would run to meet him, and climb into his arms. And no aching heart ever got close to his heart without finding relief. We think of Brahma, Buddha, Confucius, and Mohammed as in the tomh. We go to dusty encyclopae-
dias to study them. We feel that they were imperfect men, who are dead. We think of Jesus as living. We walk and comitnune with him. We see him on Calvary. But afterward we take supper with him at Emmaus'. We see him ascend. We look through the gate ajar with Stephen and see him on the right hand of Grod. He lives and loves. We can imagine other teachers like Brahma, Buddha, Confucius, Mohammed, but we cannot imagine another Jesus. There is not enough room in the phj^ical and moral universe for another like unto him. He fills all the space. He is Humanit)^^® man, its God; he is Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending — the first and the last. JESUS' PLAN OF WORK We speak it reverently, it was not enough for Jesus to be perfect intellectually and morally. He could have been that, and yet failed of the work for which he was needed. He was intellectuality plus soul-power, actively engaged in trying to save the world. He viewed the world of humanity as a world of brothers — lost, and needing to he rescued. He had a theory about reaching the masses, and he put it into practice. He went after them, staid with them, and got them to see their needs.. This is still the wisest way. It is far better than standing aloof from them, talking at them and about them. Jesus could easily have gathered to himself, in some populous centre, a throng of admarers, who would have builded for him an elegant s}Tiagogue, put in it cushioned pews, rented them for an income ; built for Mm a palace so that he could have had the fashionable church in the city, lived in luxury, received the praises of men, had little stations off yonder amiong the poorer elements to whom men were sent, by official appointment, to preach a theoretical
340 THE AMERICAN BAPTIST PULPIT. Grospel. If he had done that he would have heen a failure, and his fine synagogue, like many costly temples of to-day, would have been a failure. There are many church^, I fear, to-day, of whom the
Master has written : ''Thou hast a name to live and art dead." Jesus could have saved himself much of his sorrow and toil. But had he done so he would have lost his cause. Either he or his cause had to he crucified. He was his plan in operation. He went among the masses, giving them the best of his thought, and the richest of his heart-power. Every man of wealth and station, who came in touch with Jesus, had to hunt him up and come to him. He did some things for centurions, and others of high position, but they sent for him. He did much for Xicodemus, but Nicodemus went to him. Jesus went to the people, the lost sheep of the house of Israel, those who felt lifers burdens pressing them. He received sinners and ate with them. Mountains, vallej^s, boats, and streets were his pulpits. Jew and G-entile^ — all elements of humanity were the objects of his love and work — and the common people, literally, the many people, heard him gladly. There was divine wisdom in Jesus' plan. He did not give to the world a religion of classes. He did not give a gospel that appealed to classes. He excoriated sin in all classes. He rejoiced in righteousness in all classes. His gospel was the need of every soul in every class. Yet he went to the masses rather than to the palaces. The man in the palace in Galilee was worth no more to Jesus than the man in the boat on G-alilee's blue lake. Had he have taken up his time in the palaces the fishermen would never have paid any attention to him. If, however, he should get the fishermen stirred up, the man in the palace would come down to the seashore presently to see what was going on. It has been the same way in every country since then, and is so to-day throughout the earth. The sooner we take this into account the sooner this world is going to be saved. Many of our large city churches are acting directly opposite to what Jesus did. Hence, they are a joke in the estimation of the masses of the people. Many churches are religious, social, or ethical clubs rather than gospel lighthouses. Thousands of churches are dead and dying of religious exclusiveness. That is, Christ's religion is
JESUS^ THE WORLD^S GEEAT COMMONEE, 341
excluded from them, and tbey are excluded from any power over the people. What the world needed in Jesns^ day was touch with God's heart. It got that through Jesus, and we are to stand in his name now as did his disciples as related in the Acts of tjie Apostles. Jesus could have remained in heaven and have poured banks of gold out to the sufferers of earth, but that would not have saved them. Then as now the world needed a heart to throb for it, with it, in it! What the world needed was not heaven's gold, but heavens Christ. Oh, brethren, let us take the Christ and translate him through our individual and church life, so that he shall still touch earth's masses ! Oh, breath of God, breathe in us anew the breath of the Christ ! JESUS A CONSTEUCTIVE WOEKEK Owing to Jesus' brain, moral nature, and broad sympathies with the masses^ he became the great constructive force in the human race. If you will, you may call him Love in illustration. Some so-called love destroys others to gratify itself. Christie love gives itself to save and build up the object of love. This force takes a youth, transforms him. It gives him an object to love ; takes his eyes and gives them a keener, milder vision; takes from them the dark side of life; takes his heretofore common companion and clothes her with a magnetism to bi-m now irresistible ; it paints the' future with bright colors; it makes the world to him all new; fills it with new people; elegant homes; all the thoughts of it are pleasant; all the days are useful ; all the nighte are starry. He has been reconstructed ; he is a new creature. Love has made him' anew. That is what the Christ in us does. The Christ's soul within us does not create a small fairy world in a beautiful little castle all for our own selfish enjoyment. It seizes the habitable earth in its scope. Christ's hardest work has been the leveling of humanity. He must level it to lift it. Humanity, alwaysi, everywhere, outside of Christ, tries to live in a barricaded castle. Apart from Christ, it is satisfied with its own baronetcy. When Christ came Greek hated Eoman, Eoman hated Greek, and the Jews hated aU the world outside of Judaism. Sia had built these walls of hatred. How terrible they were! Christ undertook to level them. He has not succeeded wholly yet, but
reports great progress.
342 THE AMERICAN BAPTIST PULPIT. Our idea of missions has been too long that of a noble "self at this end of the line and a dirty, miserable savage at the other. Pharisaical! Christ^s idea is that at this end of the line a brother is tr5r[ng to help a dear brother at the other end of the line. To ChTist the world was a "brothery^^ — a home of brothers. He said : "Go into all the world ; tell every one." Suppose this idea had been emphasized through all the ages since then ? Instead of the world having been so often devastated by hatred — ^the destructive passion — we could now read a long, glorious chapter of love's labor not lost. We should not be reading how one nation destroyed another, only to be destroyed in its turn. Greece, with all her treasures, would still be ours; Eome would have lived till evaporated. Her greatness would have been builded on the foundations of peace and fraternity. The' Saxon would not have come forth conquering and to conquer, but would have marched as a brothcT among brethren, helping to analyze soil, control climate, air, fire, and all of nature's secret powers and glories, to harness them for the use of his brethren. No hellish whip Could cut the lip Of driven slave In cursed hand Of man or knave In any land. But every man A brother brave Would use his hand The world to save. It will thus be seen that Jesus was the world's benefactor. He
had not a nation, nor banks of gold to back him, but he had truth and righteousness, and God to back him. With him the redeemed soul is the unit of earth's greatest society. Nor can the vast organism ignore the unit. The aggregate is possible only by means of the units. The plea of Christ is hrotherism — that each individual shall take the whole of humanity into account, and try to his utmost ability to be a constructive force for humanity. Every one who can avert or dry a scalding tear from another's cheek is one of the world^s benefactors. If vou cannot reach vour silken
JESUS, THE WOELD's GREAT COMIilOXEE. 343 kerchief roimd the world, touch to the right, and have thy neighbor pass it on till eyery tear is dried. Eacli lion's wkelp in all the world To erery lion else is dear. The tiger from the lair is hurl'd By brother lion watching near. But what of every human child? Amid the tigers fierce and wild ? Each human to this earth is given To help make earth a place like heaven. EESULT3 We have seen Jesus as to his brain-power, his heari^power, his purpose, and his plan. And in this vision of him we have seen him in his relation to sin, and to the fntnie destiny of the human race. Everywhere we have heard him speak, his voice sounded like that of a brother in sympathy and of God in majesty. The results of such a life on the thought of the world are too stupendous to be recounted. He predicted that, even though he should be lifted up, put to death, he would draw all men unto himself. Gradually that
drawing has gone on until the human intellect has turned to him as the central figure, and to his words as the words with which to reckon. Turn to the world of science, and you find the scientists study the soil, the rocks, the air, the flowers, the animal life, and man in relation to this Christ. Turn to the historian, and he is writing the influence of this Christ on the lengthening march of the human race. Turn to the world-rulers of states, republics, empires, and kingdoms, and they are asking: What are Christ's teachings on the subject of government? Since Christ came to earth there has not been a really great poem of any considerable length which did not have Christ in it somewhere. Turn to the sociologist, and he is writing on man's relation to man in the light of what Christ said about it. Turn to the spiritualist, and he is trying to bolster his vagaries by something garbled from this Christ. Turn to the noveHst, and you will flnd that often Christ is dragged in to make it go. In the past few months over four mil-
344 THE AMERICAN BAPTIST PULPIT. lions of "In His Steps^^ have been sold, The world is studying the Christ, writing the Christ, singing the Christ, talking the Christ. To think apart from him is to think falsely, and to have your thoughts condemned. To sing apart from Christ is to wail and lament., To' live apart from' the Christ is to die. To work apart from the Christ is to fail. These conclusions are the results of his brain, heart, and personality on the world. Sublimely and majestically alone must he stand who has thus projected such an allconquering, all-molding force into the realm of thought and life. Surely he is the Life, the Truth, the Way! The fact that he is thus so universally acknowledged^ however, must not be mistaken for universal obedience to him, nor to argue the complete adoption of his teachings. The unconverted world is bound to acknowledge that he is powerful and tO' be reckoned with, but it hates him because he is in the way of its unrighteous plans and methods. The conflict was possibly never deadlier than now. It has turned mainly in two directions. First. It has turned with renewed energy to the realm of impurity. Pos-
sibly Satan was never more active and never more successful in turning the multitudes to immorality than now. Our large; cities wreak with the putreifaction of immorality. Satan is disputing Christ's teachings, and making society believe that it can be impure without any danger to the soul. Second. The opposition has turned to strengthen itself by deadlier forms of covBtousness. Men are selling their souls for money — yea, they are becoming legalized murderers for gold. Christ says: What will it profit a man if he gain the whole world and lose his soul ? DUTY What is our duty? It is in one word — faithfulness. During Napoleon's retreat from Moscow one of his soldiers, Julian Wyat, saw a carriage that had been destroyed in a skirmish. He went to it and found a dead governess, but a living child about six years old. The little one was almost frozen. He took her and warmed her back to life by his own warm heart. He cared for her tenderly amid the tauntings of the soldiers, who said : "She is nearly dead, and is a lot of trouble; why don't you let her die?" He replied: ^'We'Ve killed enougli already.*" Wheii ke could get a furloTigh he went to seek her home, which she had described to him. Her father was a great count of vast wealth. At last Julian found the home, and delivered Stephaine to the coiint and countess. Stephaine said: '"Papa, this is Jnlian: he saved my life I I want yon all to love him.'' The great count took Julian Wyat and gave Mm a brother's love and a magnificent home. Friends, up yonder is the great King. Out yonder are his perishing children. What they need is your warm, Christ-like h^rt to beat life into their hearts till you can bring them to the palace of their Father. And I read another story which endeth thus: •'Inasmuch as ye did it unto one of these little ones, ye have done it unto me.*"
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