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A SPIRIT OF WILLINGNESS.
In Psalm 110;:? the inspired Psalmist speaks of that happy time when God's people shall be "a willing people." We wonder if that time will ever eome. We boast of our firmness and consistency, until stubbornness has been exalted into a virtue and immovability a charm of the Presbyterian Church. Some years ago a gifted son of the Church wrote an article entitled "An Inquiry Into t lie Aggressiveness of Presbyterianism." It revealed that just now, at any rate, Presby terians are progressing backwards, with a Fabian policy gracefully retiring to the rear, and letting other brain-lies of the Church of God go forward where we ought to have been. Is not the seeret to be found that Presbyte rians are not a willing people? Every man does what is right in his own eyes and chaos is the result, lint what about "principles?" The trouble is that we exalt almost any thing into a principle. We have heard of a good woman whose fathers had worshipped in an old ehureh dedicated at a particular spot, ami when the change of population ulade it eminently desirable to move the building, she refused to move and on every Sabbath morning wended her way to the old site and hoisted her umbrella on the bare spot and remained quiet an hour and a half and then went home. It was against her "principles." How extremely difficult it is to get any gen erally adopted plan of advance. Is it not true that a few may be willing, but "Thy people" are not willing? Careful and wise men have looked into the Interchureh Movement and have seen in it a great advance of the kingdom, informing, in structing. inspiring and uniting in methods the whole Church of God. Instantly a spirit of unwillingness arises all along the line and hence a shaft or two of criticism is shot. We have no plea for the Interchureh Move ment nor for these forward-looking men who see in it a step forward. They are perfectly able to take care of themselves. But they are busy men and have no time to answer. Is not the real opposition arising from the old spirit of unwillingness to anything that is real progress? Suppose the Movement does not do what it seems to promise? What is $200,000 to the whole Southern Presbyterian Church? It amounts to $.50 apiece. Wo. think any man ought to be willing to invest that much in a promising plan. Our P. P. P. is in danger of falling down, not because there are not loads of money in the hands of our people, not because we haven't the best people in the land who love God's kingdom, but because of a stubborn unwilling ness to do something we have never done be fore ? to step out into a new system. The unifying of methods of handling finance has been carried to a great and successful issue in all great business houses, but when the Gen eral Assembly suggests something along that line, the "Spillman plan," the bringing of our Executive Departments under one control, the Executive Committee of Foreign Missions, for which we have a profound respect, objccts on trivial grounds which only hide an unwilling ness to do things in a new ami proved way. What breaks a progressive pastor's heart is the sluggishness and unwillingness often of his best people to step out into new paths. Un willing to use the envelope system in finance. Some ministers almost jeopardize their pasto rate by insisting 011 it. Unwilling to enlist new people in work ? our Sunday schools, our so cieties manned by the same people who have been running them in the same old way3 for two generations; ?.nd to suggest a change of personnel or of plan raises an ecclesiastical riot ami the poor p?*ea?*her must duck for shelter. There must bo leaders, and they must lead. They certainly ought not to be blind horses going the round of the treadmill. 1*he people must be willing to be led and must follow will ingly if the greatest good is to come. "Thy people shall be willing in the day of Thy power." Is it an evidence that "the power'' has been taken from us? We pray that a willing heart may be given to God's people. A. A. Li. Contributed NOTES HERE AND THERE. By Rev. C. II. Harding, 1). 1). If a man denies the existence of God who is Ihe center of the universe can he have the right attitude toward any being or any theory? The Christian Church will not be the ideal Church until every member of that Church feels the obligation to use every opportunity to bring men to Christ, not only by giving them the example of holy lives, but urging them to come to Jesus, pressing the claim of Christ upon them. Bishop liutler says. "Things and actions are what they are and the consequences of them will be what they will be." God in Ilis word tells us that there is a heaven for those who accept His gospel, and a hell for those who deny and reject it. Thousands of men re ject the Scriptures and think it shall be well with them in the end. Let them remember things are as they are, and their opinions are worthless. "The consequences will be as they will be." "To St. Paul preaching the gospel was an unceasing delight, the universalism of the gos pel had burst upon his mind in the unspeakable splendor and undimmcd freshness. He is sail ing into an undiscovered ocean with a bound less horizon. A new heaven and a new earth is opened to him in the revelation that the Gen tiles are partakers of the promises in Christ Jesus. He is entranced with the largeness of the divine purpose, with the magnificent sweep and scope of designs of God's grace. * * ? # # "It is those who wait on the Lord who re new their strength. It is in His light that we see light. It is when God has opened our eyes that we see wondrous things not only in His law, but in our souls, and upon the earth around us, and in the heavens above us," and in all our relations to our heavenly Father, to our fellow Christians and fellow men. ? * ? ? * "If any man will do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same shall by my brother and sister and mother." O gracious Master, how great beyond our conception was Thy desire to see men do Thy Father's will and equally beyond our conception Thy love for them who do that will. The same is my brother and sister and mother. "Iyet all the waves and billows go over us and let deep call unto deep exulting over us. God has depths still more awful than their depths from the deepest of which comes a voice to each one of us I will never leave nor forsake thee." Spurgeon writes: "An old friend of mine said to me 'Ah, you preach the three R's and God will always bless you.' 1 said, 'What arc the three li's?' lie answered, 'Ruin, redemp tion and regeneration.' " Yes, this is the gos pel of Jesus. No other is worth preaching. And we may add that it will bring us to the three II 's ? holiness, happiness and heaven. ? ? * # * Says Dr. Dale as follows: "There are a large number of people who suppose that modern science and modern criticism have destroyed the foundation of faith and who cannot under stand how in these days it is possible for in telligent men to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ. I answer their faith has been verified in their own personal experience." On this point I now wish to write. The Christian says to the unbeliever God lias been dealing with me, and I with Ilim. You have been dealing with men and they with you. You have be eomc from your dealing with them a learned man in various kinds of knowledge, a man of taste and culture in letters ancient and mod ern. You have been walking on the plane of men, but you stopped there ami what, you are, you are by the grace of God. I went up to the plane where God walks and walked with Ilim and have been taught of God. I have experi enced a great and wonderful change, so very great and pecidiar that I believe God only could produce it ; t he same power which touch ed the blind man's eyes and he saw opened my eyes and I saw Christ my Saviour. The same voice which called Lazarus from the grave call ed me from the dead and began immediately to exercise Christian activities. How do you show the influences upon you from your dealing with men? You point to the result, your char acter which those dealings have formed in you. So I point to my own new character, my new life, as the result of God's work upon my soul. Your environments have been men; my en vironments have been the blessed Trinity, the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost and my soul has responded to the influences they have exerted upon me and I find myself a new man in a new world. Now the book which you deny as God's revelation exactly describes my former condition as a sinner and as changed by God's almighty power my present condition. Here is what the Bible says of my former condition : "The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned." 1 found this literally true. Of my present condition God who caused the light to shine out of darkness hath shined in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of God in the face of Jesus Christ. Once I lived entirely in this world and for the world. I never asked what God would have me do, my whole life went out to this world, its amusements, its business. I did not love God, nor His word, nor llis service, nor worship, nor do His commands or walk in His ways. He was not in my world. I sought to get the resources of this world, to have its potentialities in my hands for my own ends and purposes, but now that I have been born again I desire all my powers to be consecrated to God, to Jiave no will, plan, purpose but God's as I have said I am in a new world, with new hopes, new aspirations, new fears, new joys. My life now sets to God, not to the world. The Saviour says, He that is taught of God cometh to me. I have come to Christ. He is my only hope for salvation, therefore I feel I am taught of God. Thousands from the days of the apostles have had my experience and confirm me in the truth and light of the gospel. It is because of a great change in our nature, which we believe God only could produce. No.\ you sec why our belief in God's words stand against all teachings of infidel, science and all infidel Biblical criticism. We know we are