OCR Interpretation

The Universalist. [volume] (Chicago [Ill.]) 1884-1897, October 23, 1897, Image 1

Image and text provided by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library, Urbana, IL

Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn90053049/1897-10-23/ed-1/seq-1/

What is OCR?

Thumbnail for

vol. xiv. f.Tm&ffi£ig;.r,i'i_Chicago and Cincinnati, Saturday, ootohkk 23. 1397. no. 43
•Iniversaust Publishing House,
E. F. ENDICOTT, General Agent
Issued Every Saturday by the
Western Branch ofthe Publishing Housi
i Dearborn St. Rooms 40 and 41
“ \.nMo • • • j |.25 SIX MONTHS.
dKJUT'TANCES:—Make all checks, drafts.
■ .itr*v a<ii| express orders payable to A. >1
mason, Cashier, or Universalist Publishing
iiso. Western Branch
'.,Tpr.a nt the i’oetoW... »■ a.’1 *"“■
Pace On*.
Editorial Briefs.
Work for Prisoners.
The Needed Power.
pace Two.
Occasional Sermon.
Pace Three.
I'lie Sunday School Lesson.
Poem: A Voice From The Poor House.
Page Four.
The Riddle of Existence.
Toilers and Machinery.
The “Where” of the Kingdom.
The Sudden Death of George M. Pnllman.
The Michigan Convention.
Church News and Correspondence.
Page Six,
The Family Page. Farm. Garden and Dairy.
Page Seven.
Our Boys and Girls.
Page Eight.
News of the Week.
Chnrch Notices and in Memoriam.
It is a sign of the times that in Kan
sas the three schools of medicine repre
sented in the practice of the state, the
"regular” the homoeopathic, and the ec
lectic, have arranged to hold a joint
meeting, at which papers are to be read
by members of each party. It is not a
unanimous love-feast, some of the old
school withholding themselves from it,
and some even denouncing it as a recog
nition of "humbug.” But the more intel
ligent public’s sentiment favors the union
program. As respects the "schools the
public has ceased to make any discrimi
nation on the basis of merit because it
discerns no ground for it. Practitioners
of the same grade of ability and educa
tion achieve results so nearly identified
that it is no longer a question of moment
to what cult your physician belongs
The Kansas idea will invade other
—The Endeavorer—dreadful name!
quotes some ready reckoner who has
figured up that the young people’s con
ventions of the last bummer cost $6,175,
000, and mitigates the apparent enor
mity of the expenditure by suggesting
that the greater part of it was spent by
persons who took this in place of some
other vacation. No doubt thi6 is the
case in many, perhapB in the majority of
instances. If so, it changes the aspect of
this large item of expense. If some
thousands of persons take their outing
in attending conventions, and prefer to
do so, the cost of it is not properly
chargeable to the conventions. It is
turning the vacation fever to account in
making these gatherings large and
memorable. We could wish that other
convections might benefit in the same
—The intention of Mr. Chadwick in
his paper read before the Saratoga Con
ference was not, we muBt assume, to de
preciate Jesus so much as to take away
the remaining prop from the “New
Theology.” But it is impossible to read
that paper and not feel that the author
has ceased to be a Christian in any but
the hereditary and statistical sense. By
inheritance and inevitable intellectual
and spiritual absorption he ie more like
the Master whom his dialectic discredits
than some who are rated as sound in
the faith. But Jesus is to him not at
all what he has been and still ie and al
ways will be to the Christian world,
Mr. Chadwick believes securely any
thing told of Jesus in the Gospels: he
repudiates altogether what ie affirmed of
him in the creeds and in theology; and
he empties from the great personality
that tille so large a space in the history
of religion most of its unique contents.
So does this poet theologian “abjure hie
—Dr. Newman Smyth, apparently,
taking a hint from Prof. Tyler’s “Whence
and Whither of Man,” makeB an inter
esting and suggestive study of “The
Place of Death in Evolution.” He points
out that death ie not the goal of living
things, but a necessary step in the
ascent of life. “It comes to reign on
earth because it comes to serve.” Life
Dr. Smyth believes and tries tc show
ever marches on and up. Death is an
incident and a necessary incident in the
upward evolution. Much curious and
some instructive analysis is offered in
I support of this general proposition; and
its obvious bearing on the future of man
is brought out in a strong and assuring1
light. The old and ugly fact, however,
of the disappearance of the individuals
by death, in this process of ascent,
seems to be shunned rather than fairly
—Dr. Hale's description of a popular
misconception of liberal religion is, that
it means the privilege of going to hear
a lecture on Sunday and playing poker
"in any way you pleaee” on week days
The description is felicitous—though it
might be varied to read, “the privilege
of going or not going to hear a lecture on
Sundays.” It would not be without
profit to those of us who suppose our
selves to be the custodians of liberal re
ligion, to ask whether we have not given
the uninformed public too many grounds
for the conclusion they have reached
about our religion? There are so many,
even in the old, long-established Liberal
church, who habitually treat their re
ligion as if it were a poor relation,—to be
recognized on occasion of a family funer
al; at other times to be quietly ignored.
—Something closely akin to the martyr
spirit is shown by many modern stu
dents of nature. The self-abnegation of
the daring aeronaut who would eolve the
polar mystery by bis balloon, is not the
least striking feature of his experiment.
The mountain climbers do literally take
their life in their hands, and every sea
son some of them lose it. But if the
love of notoriety and applause may be
held it subtracts the essential element of
self sacrifice from the case of the navi
gator, the aeronaut and the mountain
climber, we must concede it to these
brave Btudents, who in the interest of
their science and of human welfare, ex
pose themselves to contBgioD, infection,
fevers, to learn the cause and provide a
cure for maladies. Dr. Ross, of the
British army, is reported as just recover
ing from a long illness contracted in the
search for the cause of malaria.
—Universaliste believe in delay, says
a recent commentator on their theology
and views. Not so, friend. They be
lieve that deliverance from evil, adop
tion of righteousness, cannot be too im
mediate. In their view it is as undesir
able to be sinful as to be sick. To be
sound, sane, clear, correct, is even more
to be desired for the spirit than tor the
body. Delay in becoming so is, on Uni
verscdist principles, not only criminal, it
is idiotic. They teach, says the critio
or at leaBt think, that there will always
be a more convenient season. It wculd
be more exact to Bay they hold that there
never can be a more convenient season
than now. To them religion is a good,
righteousness a blessing, salvation the
soul's supreme joy. To put off the at
tainment of these present and perennial
good things would be as absurd as for a
man to put off the acquisition of property
or knowledge or health. In a true view
of the situation the accepted time is al
ways now; not because of the danger but
because of the good.
—The Freemen’s Journal (Catholic)
contends that the practice of kneeling
at the communion originated in the be
lief in the "real presence” of Christ in
the emblems. The Journal makes merry
over the custom as observed by those
who have lost faith in the fact which
caused it. “The Methodist kneels rev
erentially to what he knows to be a piece
of bread, then gets up, brushes the duBt
off his knees, and is ready to lecture the
Catholic because he kneels reverentially
before a wooden crucifix. There is some
thing very amusing in this bit of incon
sistency.” There would be certainly, if
the kneeling at communion could be ex
plained and defended only by belief in
the real presence of Christ in the bread
and wine. But the Methodist may ex
plain his act in half a dozen other ways.
—We take leave to doubt that the
custom of kneeling at the communion
originated as the Journal alleges. The
practice is very old. Kneeling was a
form of native worship long before
Christianity appeared. Solomon,
“kneeled down upon hie knees” before
all the congregation of Israel ” Daniel
“kneeled upon hiB knees” three times a
day "toward Jerusalem.” The martyr
Stephen kneeled, not as instructed in
his new faith but as accustomed in his
old. Genuflection was practiced by the
Egytiane, Greeks, Homans, Persians,
Chinese, from a very remote antiquity.
The authentic account is that the disci
ples “reclined” at the Last Supper; but
S3 soon as we hear of its observance as
a religious rite among Christians we be
gin to read of various postures, one of
which is kneeling, Bat not till long
after the custom was established was
there any contention by any one that
it was done because the actual presence
of Christ was supposed to ba in the ele
ments. It is a case of reflecting a later
dogma into an earlier uaaga.
Canton Theological School.
The city of Kuang Yang, in Hunan
province, Southern China, has been
captured and its inhabitants massacred
by a band of rebels forming part of a
rebel army which is devastating Hunan
and Kuang province. All mandarins
and every civil and military officer were
slain. The number killed and iojured
exceeded 1,000. The insurgents num
bered 15,000 men, half of them armed
Their avowed object is to destroy exist
ing government in southern China. The
government is greatly alarmed, but has
no adequate means of suppressing the
Second Article.
I presume there is nothing very
new in the presentation or conclusion
of my former article; but the great
importance of correct religious ed
ucation is re-enforced by clear and
frequent recognition.
We know of no time in the history
of man. when it was not deemed of
vital importance to instill religious
impressions in the mind, give a re
ligious education to the young and
a governing principle to the ma
tured. Long before secular educa
tion was considered at all necessary
for the masses, there was an or
ganized and somewhat systematic at
tempt to instill and feed the religious
element in man’s nature; using it to
modify and even controll his actions
and improve his disposition. Only
religion imparts fixedness of charac
ter; and we ought to remember that
to a degree it moulds the character
in accordance with its own. A fierce
and grotesque religion is found only
among people of that character. Re
ligious training should be vigorous,
insistent and of the very best quality
known, to be of the greatest benefit,
of the choicest blessing to our race.
Any religion is better than none,
but the best is none too good for
children of the Infinite Father.
And whose work shall it be to im
part this best religious education, to
improve, regulate and direct this
powerful influence in determining
man’s character? Schools and col
leges will not do it; academies of
science will not; nor literary insti
tutes; nor Reform Associations, nor
societies for moral improvement.
These all have different lines of
work; which in proportion to their
efficiency and usefulness are closely
In a general way the church is felt
to be the institution and the minister
the man forthiB work. But for some
years now, has not the tendency of
the times been to neglect and almost
ignore the spiritual element in man?
And has not both church and min
ister quite seriously caught the in
In this age of wonderful discov
eries, vast quantities of facts and
theories, plans and purposes, press
ing upon the attention of the crowd
ing throngs of busy people, to exer
cise any potent influence upon tbe
community, there must be singleness
of purpose, combined and persi-tent
effort for its prosecution; there must
be organization and concentration
for that single purpose. The scat
tering of efforts invites failure. In
all the various similar movements
of society this fact iB recognized atd
the conditions observable becoming
more prevalent as time passes and
people move. Success requires this;
usefulness, efficiency, can be ob
tained in no other wav. But do our
church movements fill this measure
of success? Are they sufficiently
consecrated to the single purpo e
of reverent, religious culture as dis
tinct from secular interests and ma
terial improvement?
Is there not a growing tendency to
make the pulpit a means of enter
tainment, father than religious in
struction and culture? Or to make
it an instructor of physical rather
than spiritual facts; a worker for
material improvement, a communica
tor of secular information rather than
religious truths and blessings?
Is there not a drifting away from
the thought of God, His imanence,
being and doing, in the voice of the
pulpit today ? How little do we hear
of the supernatural and superhuman,
in the almost ever present deserta
tion on natural law and the constant
ignoring of the facts of special, su
pernatural or superhuman occur
rences; in many cases persistently
promulgating the thought there is no
special providence, no divine nor su
perhuman causes; but all things oc
cur, come and go under the never
failing operation of natural law?
We may rest assured, that in the
proportion we fail to recognize the
divine, the superhuman, the personal
efficiency in the occurences about us,
we fail to truly recognize our own
weakness; our dependence, our obli
gation and cur duty to God and our
fellowman, the fundamental element
in religion, and the main quality that
distinguishes us from the animal cre
Secular knowledge is a good thing,
but we have numberless institutions
for its impartation, and in the bands
of the minister should only be used
or given, when conducing to the
strengthening and purifying our re
ligious impulses, if he would be effi
cient in his sphere.
Science is a good thing, but there
are organizations for the promotion
of science in almost every branch of
it, and it is out of the line of the re
ligious teacher’s work to teach it; he
should therefore use it only in his
instruction, when strengthening the
religious convictions of bis hearers.
Every man to his work. The spirit
ual is first in importance, not most
apparent, but the most esssential in
man’s progress and uplifting, and
temporal prosperity. The voice,
which religious teachers, Christian
teachers should hear and heed, comes
down through the ages thus; “But
seek ye first the kingdom of God and
his righteousness, and all these things
shall be added unto you.”
Religion,Christian religion, imparts
the choicest of present blessings, but
material blessings do not impart'
strengthen, and purify religion.
Christianity is “the eternal religion,”
the kingdom of God and his right
eousness, which is the thing first to
be sought and first taught; eulogized
and held aloft, expounded and pro
claimed first, last and all the time by
teachers of religion, ministers of
the Gospel of Christ. More Gospel
sermons, breathing the devout, duti
ful, loving dependence upon him
who is able to and does bless us more
than we can think to ask of him, in
stead of so many pretty literary lect
ures as cold as pure intellect always is.
There are literary and lecture lyce
ums in almost every town to furnish
such food, but no other institution or
men to furnish the religions, and let
the preacher devote himself to more
important work.
Make a religious, Christian church,
and temperance, sobriety, honesty,
purity, reformation of all wrong, will
be added to it. Not as the work of
the church but as the result of the
church's work upon the people, the
effect of the pure Christain religion
instilled into the people by the
church and its pastor.
O. Church! O, Minister! O, Peo
ple! “S9ek ye first the kingdom of
God and his righteousness” and ma
terial blessings will follow. “The
kingdom of God” is his remembrance
and reign in the human soul as ex
emplified in the deep, reverent, lov
ing religion of Jesus Christ! And bo
“his righteousness,” is that exempli
fied in Christ’s unswerving perform
ance of good deeds in love. Seek ye
first these and ye need not be un
easy about your shortcomings or the
sins or wickedness of the world. Give
the world a true religion, and it will
be true; wrong will flee from it.
Let the church then use all its en
ergy and effort for the Bingle purpose
of cultivating and purifying the re
ligious element in our nature; giving
reverence, devotion, and love for di
vine things, and not be lost or for
gotten in the rush or whirl of ma
terial interests and propagandism
Do not permit it to fritter away its
euergies by scattering in other fields
of labor; but hold it straight to the
single interest of religion, pure de
votion, divine recognition, loving de
pendence and cheerful obedience to
the Divine Father; that it may suc
cessfully prosecute its work of elevat
iug the children of the Infinite one
Indianapolis, Ind.
The etate of New York has fur
nished an object lesson in the man
agement of criminals which our gen
eration will do well to consider. Hith
erto New York has had a law which
allowed the inmates of prisons and
penitentiaries God’s privilege of earn
ing their bread in the sweat of the
brow. But outside manufactures
and labor unions were jealous of the
competition. The law of prison
labor cheapened the prices of the
kinds of goods made in the peniten
tiaries. And so they besieged the
legislature to repeal the law. It is
now unlawful for prisoners in New
York state to do any labor, or manu
facture any article which competes
with the so-called honest labor of the
Now as to results. In Kings county
penitentiary there are mote than 1.000
inmates. Heretofore the profits on
their industries were from $12,000 to
$20,000 per year. These profits are
now repudiated Hnd $50,000 per an
num expended for the keep of the
prisoners. Here is a financial differ
ence against the policy of idleness of
about $70,000 per year in a single
penal institution. Therefore, the
honest outside laborers in that Kings
county must make good these $70,000
by extra taxation for the.t amount per
The law of idleness has accorn
plished another result. It has tanta
lized the prisoners with a daily
amount of exquisiteand unnecessary
cruelty. The fruit of the law is the
essence of torture. It has made the
prisons a real inquisition. The men
have begged the wardens to find
something for them to do. The pris
oners have declared that ‘‘they should
go crszv in their cells with nothing
to occupy their time.” At Sing Sing
as many as ten per week have at
tempted suicide. The wardens,
moreover, affirm that “nothing causes
so much demoralization among pris
oners as idleness.” The moral results
therefore are disastrous. The sani
tary results are disastrous, and the
financial results are disastrous. In
stead of these satanic graduates from
this school of degrading inactivity,
the state might have sent into free
dom and thrift experts in domestic or
mechanical methods of livelihood,
when their penal terms expired. The
godly principles of industry would
enable the convicts to return to the
freedom of the commonwealth with
better bodieB, better minds, better
morals, more industrious fingers, be
sides relieving the taxation of honest
people for their support.
Well, the beneficent philosophy of
industry and the mischievous princi
ples of idleness, apply to all condi
tions and stages of life. Hence this
is a good text, “Now therefore con
sider what ye have to do.” From the
cradle to the coffin happy is the per
son that hath something to do, and
the strength and will to do it. More
the eighty-two thousand criminals
filled the United States jails in 1890.
Industrious, healthful daily labor is
one of the sacred blessings which in
alienably belong to them. The heart
of God sent forth no curse when his
lips declared “Six days shalt thou
labor and do all thy work” and “In
the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat
bread.” The right to labor is God’s
conferred right. God has given the
hands to feed the body. Economically
managed, these 82,000 prisoners
could earn their own bread,and keep
their families from starvation. 400,000
human beings are affected by the in
carceration of these 82,000. These
82 000 human beings need indoor
labor and outdoor labor, summer and
winter. All the garments they wear,
most of the food which they consume
aud the needful tools which they use,
should be of their own production,
aud something left for their depend
ents. And the highways of this grest
Republic might be turned into ways
of pleasantness, provided our local
laws would treat these human beings
as wisely and well as they ought to
be treated. We should thus add to
the whole sum of prosperity and
happiness and take nothing from
Now, while the moral rights of the
citizen are limited, the moral rights
of the state are also limited. The
state has no right to boycott a sub
ject’s honesty. The state could not
prevent a prisoner from paying his
own debts were he so willed and had
the money. The state has no right
to prevent even a wicked father from
giviog bread to his children in so far
as he can do so in consistence with
his punishment. But the state
should make it consistent with pun
ishment that a criminal might earn
his own bread and feed his perishing
Morality has another law which
the state is bound to respect, to wit:
“Thou Bhalt not punish the innocent
with the guilty.” If the state incar
cerates the husband and father or the
widow’s son, then the state should
become the custodian of the mother
and of the destitute little ones. Acd
if the state is the custodian, then
who should become the bread-winner
more justly than he who had promised
at the altar before God in the days of
his youth? The state is too short
sighted. In striving to do justice
between man and man at variance,
and to punish the guilty, it forgets
mercy to the associated parties. It
boycotts those made widows and
orphans, at leat for a season, by its
own act. Thou shalt neither justify
the wicked nor clear the guilty. Thou
shalt also have mercy on those who
deserve mercy. Therefore, require
the imprisoned husband to win bread
for the wife and mother, and to pro
vide meat and shelter for the chil
dren. Wisdom is justified of her
children, but not till they deal justly
and love mercy. The state should
be more paternal. It should deprive
no hand of that virtuous labor which
will bless the body and help save the
soul. “If any will not work, neither
should he eat.” Woe, therefore, to
the arbitrary power which deprives a
man of work. Woe to the unright
eous gospel which declares, “Thou
shalt not work.”
The notorious Sam .Tones (who is
nothing except he is profane or blas
phemous), affirms that “Hell is located
a half-mile from Boston.” But Bos
ton can have hell nearer than that.
Absolute idleness makes a hell of any
place. Heaven itself would be full of
pain under such restraint. To be
happy even celestials must have some
thing to do. Virtuous employment
is the first step toward the reform of
a prisoner.
^GRANGE, ill.
Opinions on Walt Whitman, both
in England and in America, though
differing somewhat according to the
personal point of view, agree in the
main to such an extent as to permit
a broad classification of them into
extremely laudatory or the opposite.
Never had an American writer more
zealous champions or more untiring
detractors, and so earnest were these
two classes that those who knew
nothing of Whitman’s writings of
themselves were attracted or repelled
according to these widely differing
estimates. The time seems now to
have come, however, when a saner
and truer conception of the man may
be formed. As to his work the critics
and readers generally are still con
fused and at loggerheads. Whitman
during his life was acclaimed by his
friends the poet of the future, but,
j unlike Wagner in music, he has not
yet arrived and the day seems'dis
tant still when Whitman’s’ poetry
will be generally recognized as the
supreme poetic utterance of America*
As to Whitman, the man, however,
there seems to$*be no longer any
reason for doubt or indecision.
His letters, publisbed*'under the
title “Calamus,” show him to have
been a big, breezy, kindly nature “a
wholesome, simple-hearted, affection
ate, keen-sighted. Bweet-minded, im
pulsive, idle, tolerant, charitable,
boyish, merry, vigorous old man. a
passionate lover of humanity, of the
open air, of the sea, of active moving
life, of his country,” as “The Acade
my” puts it in its analysis of these
letters, which were written during
the years 1868-1880. His pleasures
were few, simple, and healthful; bis
friendships sincere and hearty,
and the entire man seems to have
been natural and unaffected, how
ever magniloquent and boastful his
poetry may occasionally be. Such a
conception will alter greatly the
perspective of the man and bis work
on the part of many readers and
while it scarcely seems probable that
criticism will alter greatly its verdict
upon his poetry, Whitman, the man,
has become a very much more lov
able person and that always counts
for a great deal in final estimates in
literature. ,
Occasional Sermon by A. G. Rogers, D. D.
General Convention, Chicago, October 19, 1897.
“But ye shall receive power, after that
the Holy Ghost Is come upon you: and ye
shall he witnesses unto me both in Jeru
salem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria,
and unto the uttermost part of the earth. ”
—Acts of the Apostles, i. 3.
“And they were all filled with the Holy
Ghost, and began to speak with their ton
gues, as the Spirit gave them utterance. ”
—Acts of tue Apostles, ii. 4.
TT^HESE words are those last re
I corded in the sacred narrative
beforeour Lord’s Ascension. He had
lingered among his disciples forty
days, speaking to them of those great
truths which pertained to the king
dom of heaven. During that blessed
season he held holy fellowship and
communion with them. His appear
ances during those forty days were
not only revelations from the invisi
ble, preparing them for his final
withdrawal as a visible object of love
and trust, but periods of instruction
for them in the higher principles of
the new kingdom. It was the begin
ning to them of a new and better life.
Sometimes he appeared to only a
portion of them, and sometimes to
the whole of them. At this last in
terview, which to them must have
been one of very deep and sacred sig
nificance, they were all assembled.
The scene was a most impressive one.
Human language would simply fail
to describe it.
There was at this time a subject
which troubled the disciples not a
little, and concerning which they de
sired further information. They had
always cherished an imperfect and
earthly »view of the kingdom their
Master came to establish. Doubtless
the spiritual instruction they received
from him after the resurrection served
to largely modify those unspiritual
conceptions of the purpose and scope
of his mission. And yet a hope still
remained in their hearts that a tem
poral power might be founded, and
an earthly kingdom be established.
It is impossible to read these clos
ing lines without being conscious of
a deep sympathy with the disciples
in the patriotic hope that they cher
ished with regard to the future ofthe
Jewish people.
It is not a matter of surprise, there
fore, to us that they put this ques
tion to him: “Lord wilt thou at this
time restore tbe kingdom of Israel!”
W ith what consideration he answers
them, checking and rebuking specu
lation as to the fulfilment of tbe
promise: “It is not for you to know
the times and seasons which the Fa
ther hath put in his own power.’’
What a blessing if the Church of
Christ at all times in ber history
could have been content to heed this
admonition which our Lord gave to
his disciples on the ascension morn
ing. Verily the secret things belong
to God. To the rebuke so lovingly
given was added a splendid promise:
“But ye shall receive power, after
that the Holy Ghost is come upon
you: and ye shall be witnesses unto
me both in Jerusalem, and in all
Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the
uttermost part of the earth.”
Often in the waiting days that fol
lowed when they keenly felt the sep
aration from their loved friend and
Master, this farewell promise would
be unto them a source of spiritual
comfort. They had parted from him
They never expected to see him again
on earth, but they had his word
which could never fail, and they re
mained in Jerusalem waiting in
prayer and supplication for the com
ing of the Spirit, and the realization
of the promise. At last the day of
blessing dawned upon their waiting
souls. In the simple but expressive
language of Scripture: “When the
day of Pentecost was fully come,
they were all with one accord in one
place;” a sign of that unity of spirit
without which the church can never
expect to receive in all its fulness the
promise of her Risen Lord. “And
suddenly there came a sound from
heaven as a mighty rushing wind,
and it filled all the house where they
were sitting .... and they were
nlled with the Holy Ghost. ’ The
shadows scattered. The light had
come. Then they began to under
stand the meaning of much that had
troubled and perplexed them. Not
all at once did they lose the old im
perfect conception of the Redeemer’s
Kingdom, but from this period they
entered upon a truer realization of
their relation to him and to his mis
sion. Conscious of the spiritual na
ture of his kingdom, and possessed
of the one power that could bring
men into sympathy and obedience to
the laws of that kingdom, they went
forth a noble and heroic band to con
quer the world for their Lord and
Master, Jesus Christ.
That memorable scene at Pente
cost revealed a new order of life. It
was the day that marked the dispen
sation of the Spirit. It may be prof
itable for us at this point to note the
a ppearance and manner of these men
upon whom the Spirit descended.
That a wonderful change had taken
place in them is apparent as we
read the simple but very expres
sive language of Scripture. Peter
the apostle speaks to the assembled
company, but it is a new Peter. It
is the same story he tells, but the
man who utters it speaks with a new
power, and those who listen, listen
with profound emotion. Skepticism
has tried in its usual plausible tone
to explain away the marvelous occur
ence of Pentecost, and has utterly
failed to give us a reasonable ex
planation. There is only one explan
ation to give: The Spirit of the liv
ing God has taken possession of that
little company. The promise of the
ascension morning had been ful
filled. A new era in the history of
redemption had been inaugurated.

xml | txt