Religious Items

In an editorial entitled "Named by That Which is Highest," the (Baptist) Watchman says: "Why cannot we learn our Lord's lesson, in our intercourse with our fellow-men, and give by anticipation the encouraging and prophetic names to qualities that exist as yet only in embryo, visible, perchance, only to the eye of faith and hope? To call our children dull and stupid and foolish will often go a good way toward making them such. To applaud the efforts of the weak and over-weighted will often enable them to achieve the victory. Their endeavours may seem feeble measured by our own strength, while in reality they are herculean. We must consider circumstances and disadvantages. You who are strong must bear the infirmities of the weak; and one effective way of doing this is to fix upon their best qualities, however slightly developed and emphasize those. Call a man a saint, though he is only a saint in the making, and the process is just begun; you shall help to hasten the process and have your share in the joy over the finished product. There is joy in the presence of God over one sinner that repents. No angel ever found delight in reminding a penitent sinner of his degradation and guilt; he rejoices to lure him toward the shinning seats of the blessed. Call every man by that which is noblest and best in him, and help to create the qualities that God will crown."

The New-Church Messenger says: "Who is able to say in absolute sincerity when entering upon some undertaking, however good: 'I seek nothing for myself in this. I am not counting on any special benefits, I simply desire to carry out the divine will—not according to any special plan on which I have set my heart, but in whatever way is really best.' We are more likely to try to force issues; to take the truth or the good, which we say we will serve, determined, if it lies within our power, to make it move along the line of our natural desires, and fulfil hopes on the realization of which we stake our happiness. And if we fail, if the results are slow in coming, if, indeed, our hopes are incapable of fulfilment, there is the temptation to become vexed, troubled, downhearted. This experien is likely to occur, not because we are necessarily insincere or hopelessly selfish, but because until we have advanced well in the regenerate life, it is the way of our nature. We do, not, we cannot come at once into that perfect self-mastery which would still all this tumult of natural desires and leave us free to carry out in perfect willingness the will of God."

The (Unitarian) Christian Register publishes a sermon by the Rev. Minot J. Savage, D.D., from which the following is taken: "Suppose that socially Jesus ruled the world, ruled the city of New York. Suppose that scorn and contempt and jealousy and hatred were done away with, and that the rich looked upon the poor—the honest, the struggling poor—with tenderness and sympathy and a desire to help. Suppose that the poor, instead of looking us with jealousy and anger, recognized the rights of all, and tried to fill the place assigned as simply and patiently and lovingly as they could. Suppose Jesus ruled the orld of society, not by power but voluntarily. Suppose the qualities that were in him had become so strongly intrenched in us that we were wrought over into their likeness. ... When I ask you to think what kind of a world this would be if Jesus were lifted up and we all drawn into the imitation of his character and living his likeness, I am only asking you to think of the kind of a world that is inevitably coming."

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May 30, 1901

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