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The Missouri messenger. [volume] (Macon ;) 1894-1900, January 26, 1900, Image 4

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Dr. Talmage Portrays Two Kinds
of Busybodies.
Tbe Ulft af Evil Speech of Some Peo
ple— How We May Hate a Uen«
evoleat latereal in the Af
fair* of Olbera.
[Copyright., 1900, by Louis Klopsch )
Washington, Jan 23-
In this discourse Dr. Talmage shows
bow we should interest ourselves in
the affairs of others for their benefit,
but never for their damage. Text,
1 Peter, 4:15: “A busytody in other
men's matters.”
Human nature is the same in all
ages. In the second century of the
world’s existence people had the same
•haracteristics as people io the nine
teenth century, the only difference be
ing that they had the characteristics
for a longer time. It was 500 years
of goodness or 500 years of meanness
Instead of goodness or meanness for
40 or 50 years. Well, Simon Peter,
who was a keen observer of what was
going on around him, one day caught
eight of a man whose characteristics
were severe inspection and blatant
criticism of the affairs belonging to
people for whom he had no responsi
bility, and with the hand once browned
and hardened by fishing tackle drew
this portrait for all subsequent ages:
“A busybody in other men’s matters."
That kind of person has been a
trouble maker in every country since
the world stood. Appointing himself
to the work of exploration and detec
tion, he goes forth mischief making.
Be generally begins by reporting the
infelicity discovered. He is the adver
tising agent of infirmities and domes
tic inharmony and occurrences that
but for him would never have come
to the public eye or ear. He feels that
the secret ought to be hauled out into
light and heralded. If he can get one
line of it into the newspapers, that he
feels to be a noble achievement to
•tart with. But he must not let it
•top. He whispers it to his neighbors,
and they in turn whisper it to their
neighbors, until the whole town is
a-buzz and agog. You can no more
catch it or put it down tnan you can
a malaria. It is in Jhe air and on the
wing ar.d afloat. 'Taken by itself it
seems of little importance, but after
a hundred people have handled it and
each has given it an additional twist
it becomes a story in size and shape
marvelous. If it can be kept going,
after awhile it will be large enough to
call the attention of the courts or the
presbyteries or conferences or associ
ations. The most of the scandals
abroad are the work of the one whom
Peter in the text styles "a busybody in
other men’s matters.”
First, notice that such a mission is
most undesirable, because we aU te
quire aE the time we can get to take
care of our own affairs. To carry our
selves through the treacherous straits
of this life demands that we all the
time keep our hand on the wheel of
our own craft. While, as I shall show
you before I get through, we al] have
* mission of kindness to others, we
have no time to waste in doing that
which is damaging to others.
There is our worldly calling which
jnust be looked after or it will become
a failure. Who succeeds in anything
without concentrating all his energies
upon that one thing? All those who
try to do many things go to pieces,
either as to health or their fortune.
They go on until they pay ten cents on
the dollar or pay their body into the
grave. We cannot manage the affairs
of others and keep our own affairs
prosperous. While we are inquiring
how precarious is the business of an
other merchant and finding out how
many notes he has unpaid and how
soon he will probably be wound up or
make an assignment or hear the sher
iff’s hammer smite his counter our
own affairs are getting mixed up and
endangered. While we are criticising
our neighbor for his poor crops we
are neglecting the fertilization of our
Own fields or allowing the weeds to
choke cur own corn. While we are try
ing to extract the mote from our
neighbor’s eye we fall under the
weight of the beam in our own eye.
Those men disturbed by the faults of
ethers are themselves the depot at
which whole trains of faults arrive
and from which whole trains of faults
start. The men who have succeeded
m secular things or religious things
will tell you that they have no time
for bunting out the deficits of others.
On the way to their counting-room
they may have heard that a firm in
the same line of business was in trou
ble, and they said: “Sorry, very sor
ry," but they went iu i nd sat dorn
at their table and opened the book
containing a full statement of their
affairs to see if they were in peril of
being caught in a similar cyclone.
Gadders about town, with hands in
pockets and hats set far back on the
head, waiting to hear baleful news, are
failures now or will be failures. Chris
tian men and women who go round
with mouth and looks full of interro
gation points to find how some other
church member is given to exaggera
tion or drinks too much nr neglects
his home for greater uutsid*- attrac
tions have themselves so little grace
in their hearts that no one suspects
they have any. In proportion as people
are consecrated and holy and useful
they are lenient with others and dis
posed to say: “Wait until we hear the
other side of that matter. 1 cannot
believe that charge made against that
man or woman until we have some
better testimony than that given by
these scandal mongers. 1 guess it is
a lie."
How is it that you can always find
two opinions about anyone and those
two opinions exactly dpposite? I will
teD you the reason, it is because there
1 are two wide* to every character- tL»
best side and the worst side. A well
disposed man chiefly seeks the best
side; the badly-disposed seeks chiefly
the worst side. Be ours the desire to
, see the best side, for it is healthier for
| us to do so and stirs admiration, uhirh
is an elevated state, while the denre
; to find the worst side keeps one in a
spirit of disquietude and disgust and
I mean suspicion, and that is a pulling
down of our own nature, a disfigure
ment of our own character. 1 »m
afraid the imperfections of others will
kill us yet.
The habit 1 deplore is apt to show
itself in the visage. A kindly man
who wishes everybody well soon dem
onstrates his disposition in bis looks
His features may fracture all the laws
of handsome physiognomy, but God
puts into that man’s eyes and in the
curve of bis nostril and in the upper
and lower lip the signature of Divine
approval. And you see it at a glance,
as plainly as though it bad been writ
ten all over bis face in rose color:
“This Is one of my princes. He is on
the way to the coronation. 1 bless him
now with all the benedictions that in
finity can afford. Look at him. Ad
mire him. Congratulate him.”
On the other band, if one be cynical
a>bout the character of others and
chiefly observant of defects and glad
to find something wrong in character,
the fact is apt to be demonstrated in
bis' looks. However regular his fea
tures, and though constructed accord
ing to the laws of Kaspar Lavater, bis
visage is sour. He may smile, but it
is a sour smile. There is a sneer in
the inflation of the nostril. There is a
mean curvature to the lip. There is a
bad look in the eye. The devil ot
sarcasm and malevolence and suspi
cion has taken possession of him, and
■you see it as plainly as though from
the hair line of the forehead to the
lowest |Kiint in the round of his chin
it were written: "Mine! Mine! 1,
the demon of the pit, have soured his
visage with my curse. Look at him!
He chose a diet of carrion. He gloated
over the misdeeds of others. It took
all my infernal engineers to make him
what he is—‘a busybody in other men’s
matters.’ ”
The slanderer almost always at
tempts to escape the scandal he is re
sponsible fof. When in 1741 John Wes
ley was preaching at Bristol and show
ing what reason be had to trust in the
Captain of His Salvation a hearer cried
out: “Who was your captain when
you banged yourself? 1 know the man
who saw you when you were cut
down.” John Wesley asked the audi
ence to make room and let the slan
derer come to the front, but when the
way was open the slanderer, instead
of coming forward, fled the room. ’l*he
author or distributor of slanders never
wants to face his work.
On the day of Pentecost there were
people endowed with what was called
the “gift of tongues,” and they spake
for God in many languages. But there
are people in our time who seem to
have the gift of evil tongues, and
there is no end to their iniquitous gab
ble. Every city, village and neighbor
hood of the earth has had driven
through it these scavenger carts.
When anything is said to you defam
atory of the character of others, imi
tate Joseph John Gurney, of England,
who, when a bad report was brought
to him concerning anybody, asked:
‘‘Dost thou know any good thing to
tell us concerning her? Since there is
no good to relate, would it not be
kinder to be silent on the evil? Char
ity rejoiceth not in iniquity.”
But there is a worthy and Christian
way of looking abroad upon others,
rot for the purpose of bringing them
to disadvantage or advertising their
weaknesses or putting in “great prim
er” or “paragon" type their frailties,
but to offer help, sympathy and res
cue. That is Christlike, and he who
does so wins the applause of the high
heavens. Just look abroad for the peo
ple who have made great mistakes and
put a big plaster of condolence on
their lacerations. Such people are
never sympathized with, although
they need an infinity of solace. Do
mestic mistakes. Social mistakes. Ec
clesiastical mistakes. Political mis
takes. The world has for such only
jocosity and gesture of deploration.
There is an unoccupied field for you.
my brother. No one has been there.
Take your case of medicines and go
there and ask them where they are
hurt and apply divine medicament.
There is a public man who has made
a political mistake from which he will
never recover. At the next elections
be will be put back and put down in
to a place of disapproval from which
he will never rise. Just go to that
man and unroll the scroll of 100 splen
did Americans who, after occupying
high places of promotion, were rele
gated to private life and public scorn.
Show him in what glorious company
he has been placed by the anathema
of the ballot box.
If you are rightly interested in oth
er men’s matters, go to those who are
just starting in their occupations or
professions and give them a boost.
Those old phyaicians do not want your
help, for they are surounded with
more patients than they can attend to,
but cheer those young doctor* who
are counting out their first ch • p* to
patients who cannot afford io pay.
Those old attorneys at the law want
no help from you, for they take re
tainers only from the more prosper
ous clients, but cheer those young at
torneys who have not had a brief at
all lucrative. Those old merchants
have their business so well established
that they feel independent of banks,
of all changes in tariffs, of all panics,
but cheer those young merchants who
are making their first mistakes in bar
gain and sale. That old farmer who
has 200 acres in best tillage and bis
barns full of harvested crops, and ibe
wheat at high prices before it was
reaped, needs no sympathy from you.
but cheer up that young farmer whose
acres are covered with a big mortgage
and the drought strikes them the first
year. That bnilder with contracts
made for the construction of half a
dozen bouses and the owners impa
tient for occupancy is not to be pitied,
but give your sympathy to that me
chanic in early acquaintance with
hammer and saw and bit and amid ail
the limitations of a journeyman.
Go forth to be a busybody in other
men's matters, so far as you can help
ing them out, and help them on. The
world is full of instances of those wbc
spend their life in ruch alleviations, but
there is one instance that overtops and
eclipses all others. He bad lived In a
palace. Radiant ones waited upon him.
He was charioted along streets yellow
with gold, and stopped at gates glisten
ing with pearls, and bosannaed by im
mortals coroneted and in snowy white
Centuries gave him not a pain. The
sun that rose on him never set. His do
minions could not be enlarged, for they
had no boundaries, and uncontested
was His reign. Upon all that luster and
renown and environment of splendort
He turned His back and put down Hit
crown at the foot of His throne, and on
a bleak December night trod His way
down to a stone house in Bethlehem of
our world. Wrapped in what plain
shawl, and pursued with what enemies
on swift camels, and howled at with
what brigands, and thrust with what
sharp lances, and hidden in what sepul
chral crypt, until the subsequent cen
turies have tried in vain to tell the story
by sculptured cross, and painted can
vas, and resounding doxologies, and
domed cathedral, and redeemed na
He could not see a woman doubled up
with rheumatism but He touched her,
and Inflamed muscles relaxed, and she
stood straight up. He could not meet a
funeral of a young man but be broke up
the procession and gave him back to bis
widowed mother. With spittle on the
tip of His finger Be turned the mid
night of total blindness into the mid
noon of perfect sight. He could not see
a man down on his mattress helpless
with palsy without calling him up to
health and telling him to shoulder the
mattress and walk off. He could not
find a man tongue-tied but He gave him
immediate articulation. He could not
see a maa with the puzzled and inquir
ing look of the deaf without giving him
capacity to hear the march of life beat
ing on the drum of the ear. He could
not see a crowd of hungry people but
He made enough good bread and a sur
plus that required all the baskets.
He scolded only twice that 1 remem
ber, once at the hypocrites with elon
gated visage and the other time when
a sinful crowd had arraigned an unfor
tunate woman, and the Lord, with the
most syiperb sarcasm that was ever ut
tered. gave permission to anyone who
felt himself-entirely commendable to
hurl the first missile. All for others.
His birth for others. His ministry for
others. His death for others. His as
tension for others. His enthronement
for others.
That spirit which leads one to be
busy for the betterment of others is go
ing to Edenize the round earth. '1 hat
spirit induced John Pound to establish
“ragged schools” and Eat her Mathew
to become a temperance reformer and
i’eter Cooper to establish his institute
and Slater to contribute his fund for
schools and Baron*.<■.& Hirscb to leave
more than $lOO,OOO out) for the improve
ment of her race at <1 Cornelius \ under
bill to flood chun Les and charitable
institutions with bis benevolence. And,
though our means be limited and our
opportunities circumscribed, we can du
the same thing on a small scale. “Other
men’s matters!" Be busybodies in im
proving them. With kind words, with
earnest prayers, with self-sacrificing
deeds, with enlarging charities, let us
go forth on a new mission.
And now my words are to the invis
ible multitudes I reach week by w'eek,
but yet w ill never see in ibis world, but
whom 1 expect to meet at the bar of
God and hope to see in the blessed
Heaven. The last wurd'that Dwight L.
Moody, the great evangelist, said to me
at Plainfield. N. J., and he repeated the
message for me to others, was: "Nevet
be tempted under any circumstances
to give up your weekly publication of
sermons throughout the world." That
solemn charge 1 will heed as long as 1
have strength to give them and the
newspaper types desire to take them
Oh, ye people back there iu the bbetheld
mines of England and ye iu the sheep
pastures of Australia and ye amid the
pictured terraces of New Zvarnud and
ye among the cinnamon and color in
flamed groves of Ceylon and ye Ar
menians weeping over the graves ot
murdered households in Asia Minor and
ye amid the idolatries of Benares on
the Ganges and ye dwellers on the
banks of the Androscoggin and the
Alabama and the Mississippi and the
Oregon and the Shannon and the Rhine
and the Tiber and the Danube and the
Nile and the Euphrates and the Cas
pian and Yellow seas; ye of the four
corners of the earth who have greeted
me again and again, accept this point
blank offer of everything for nothing;
of everything of pardon and com for*
and illumination and safety and
Heaven, “without money and without
price." What a gospel for all lanus, all
zones, all ages! Gospel of sympathy!
Gospel of hope! Gospel of emaocips
tion! Gospel of sunlight! Gospel of
enthronement! Gospel of eternal vic
tory I Take, it, all ye people, until your
sins are all pardoned and your sorrows
all solaced and your wrongs all righted
and your dying pillow be spread at the
foot of a .ladder which, though like the
one that was let down to Bethel, may
be thronged with descending and as
cending immortals, shall nevertheless
have room enough for you to climb,
foot over foot, on rungs of light, till you
go clear up out of sight of all earthly
perturbation, into the realm where
“the wicked cease from troubling and
the weary are at rest.”
The man who wants tbe earth is in
variably the first to growl about bis
taxes.—Chicago Daily News.
Leaaoa la the Intera«tl«aal Series <•»
January 28, 1900—Baptiam «“ d
Temptation of Jeans.
GOLDEN TEXT.—This is My beloved
Son, in whom I am well pleased.—Matt.
8:17. ,
LESSON TOPIC.—The Endowment ol
(Matt. 4:1-11.)
1. Then was Jesus led up of the spirit
Into the wilderness to be tempted of tr.e
2. And when He had fasted forty days
and forty nights, he was afterward an hun
gered. „
3. And when the tempter came to Him.
he said: If Thou be the Son of God, com
mand that these stones be made bread.
4 But He answered and said: It Is writ
ten, Maa shall not live by bread alone,
but by every word that proceedeth out of
the mouth of God.
5. Then the devil taketh Him up into the
holy city, and setteth Him on a pinnacle
Of 6 t unto Him: If Thou be the
Son of God, cast thyeelf down: for it Is
written, He shaH give His angels charge
concerning Thee; and in their hands they
shall bear Thee up, lest at any time Thou
dash Thy foot against a stone.
7. Jesus said unto him: It is written
again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy
the devil taketh Him up into
an exceeding high mountain and showeth
Him the kingdoms of the world, and the
glory of them;
9. And saith unto Him, All these things
will I give Thee, if Thou wilt fall down
and worship me.
10. The saith Jesus unto him, Get thee
hence, Satan; for it is written. Thou shalt
worship the Lord thy God, and Him only
shalt thou serve.
IL Then the devil leaveth Him, and,
behold, angels came and ministered unto
Jesus’ Baptism. —John had been
baptizing, probably for about six
months, when Jesus presented Him
self as a candidate for the rite. He
set out from His home in Nazareth to
be baptized —not to hear John preach
or to determine the nature of John’s
mission. It seems to be hinted in
Luke 3:21 that Jesus presented Him
self somewhat privately, at the close
of a day’s work. If so, we may find
in the fact an explanation of what ap
pears to be the truth that the visible
coming of the Holy Spirit was evident
only to John and to Jesus, and that
only they heard the voice from the
sky. As to the reason for the baptism,
it seemed necessary t» Jesus in order
that He might “fulfill all righteous
ness.” The righteousness which He
wished to fulfill may well be under
stood as equivalent to the rites of
initiation into the priesthood. Those
rites included baptism, anointing with
oil, and sacrifice. Jesus was baptized
by John rather than by a priest, His
anointing was in the descent of the
Spirit upon Him, and His sacrifice was
to come when lie should offer Himself
upon the cross.
The Temptation. —The first evidence
of this presence of the Spirit was
Jesus’ departure into the wilderness
to be tempted. The temptation con
sisted not merely in the three attacks
bf which we have record, but doubt
less in many an unrecorded suggestion
to Jesus during the 40 days in which
He fasted. The purpose of the retire
ment to the wilderness was, of course,
to give Jesus opportunity for concen
trated thought upon the public work
to which He felt Himself called —its
purpose, its method, and its results.
If we may insist upon the exact mean
ing of Matt. 4:2; Luke 4:2, the ab
straction of Jesus during the 40 days
was so great that He was not con
scious of hunger. The pangs, of
which the devil tried to take advan
tage in the first temptation, must have
been very severe. The account of the
temptation must hyve been given by
Jesus to His disciples in the course of
the private teaching which occupied
much of the last six months of Hit
life. The order given in Matthew ie
the more logical one, though the
temptations probably framed them
selves to Jesus less separately and
distinctly than they appear in the ac
count. It is not necessary to sup
pose that Jesus was bodily transport
ed, nor yet that the temptation was
entirely within Himself. The truth
may lie between these two extremes
Note the plausibility of the tempta
tions. The first promised relief from
hunger and the other two assured
success in work by a manner much
easier than that which it was propei
to take. Observe that the quotations
from Scripture with which Jesus re
pels the temptations are all from the
book of Deuteronomy. The first two
temptations enticed to a misuse of Di
vine power; the third to a concession
that the devil holds the world as by
right. The freedom from temptation
which followed the great conflict here
described was only “for a season.”
(Luke 4:13.)
The Place of Temptation.— A tradi
tion, said to be no older than the time
jf the crusades, fixes the scene of the
temptation at a mountain not far from
Jericho, which from this circumstance
jas received the name of Quarantania.
Naked and arid like a mountain of
malediction, it rises precipitously from
1 scorched and desert plain, and looks
□ver the sluggish, bituminous waters
□f the Sodomitic sea—thus offering a
■harp contrast to the smiling softness
of the Mount of Beatitudes and the lim
pid crystal of the Lake of Gennesareth.
Inagination has seen in. it a fit place '
Io be the haunt of evil influences—a
place where, in the language of the
prophets, the owls dwell and the satyrs
lance.—Canon Farrar.
Those who would be the children of
Sod must be baptized with the Holy
The Holy Spirit is like a dove. That
leart must be sinful indeed that would
seep him out.
He is well prepared to resist tempta
ion who is full of the Holy Spirit.
He will be victor over temptations
vho has a sincere desire to do the will
jf God.
The small courtesies sweeten life; the
greater ennoble it.—Bovee.
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Redemption Army
A Glorious Success Ahead.
To every Baptist Church. Pastor
and Member from the Atlan
tic to the Pacific,
Greeting :
As sure as God reigns the (Ure
clouds of idolatry which now haiy
over Africa and enshroud her in death
like gloom must vanish away and our
Christ will be preached there as often
and as much as in our home-America
For years the Foreign Mission Boani
of the National Baptist Convention
has sought to arouse the Baptist fami
ly to have a share in the glorious con
quest sure to come
The Board has now set on foot a
gigantic movement which
work a revolution for good in om
Foreign Mission Work, for a 20th Cen
tury Fund.
It has devised a great organizaMt*
known as The Fatherland Redemp
tion Army which it hopes soon to a*
floating its flag from the steeple«
every Negro Baptist Church m
The purpose of the Army is to raise
money for the cause of Christ in Africa,
and is the least expensive, best adapted,
most systematic and thoroughly
plete plan which we have ever inaufv
We call upon all lovers of the
and friends of Africa to join usi#
rejoicing over the dawn of the nc»
era in our work.
To each Pastorand Laymen intheir
nomination, upon application, wet®
send, free of charge, a copy <>; w
Constitution Report, Blanks, rina*
cial Cards, Etc,, of the
Redemption Army'. Sirnply endow
two cent stamp for reply.
No Pastor should be ignorant or v
great movement destined to
plish so much for God's cause.
Correspond ing Sec reta J 7 2
the Foreign Mission Board or .
National Baptist Convention, <«
U. S. A.
Eyes Tested Free
312 New Bridge Building*
on Rubey Street,
Macon, Mo., for
Fresh Bread
Cakes, Confectionery
— ANl> o c

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