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Study whatsoever incident you will in the career of Jesus and you will find that the lasting power of it lies not so much in what Jesus himself was doing for others, as in the glory of the ideal he was setting forth to inspire self-sacrificing, successful action on the part of innumerable others. One who takes this conception of the power of the life of Jesus will inevitably make little use of the term "saviour," preferring the more accurate term of "leader." Jesus is the greatest of the world's leaders because he leads in the deepest things of life and because by his unclouded success in personally obeying his own ideals he has made it clear that all men may live on the same high plane. As a leader he is brought near to us by the perfection of his life. He sets us free from that mistaken notion that to be faulty is to be human. This is not true. To be faulty is to be something less than human. The nearer moral perfection we get the closer do we come to the human ideal, the true sonship to God. Jesus has been and is the closest spiritual friend of every man who is obeying high ideals, because he is strictly human, because the perfect things we see in him are made by him so plain and convincing as to make us understand we can be like him. Whosoever could discover a flaw in the moral nature and life of Jesus would by that act set Jesus apart from human life and make him less of a leader for the world. On the other hand, whosoever even faintly understands the moral greatness of Jesus must thereby recognize that moral greatness is possible for himself.

The Christian Register.

How did the early Church make its wonderful impression on the world? By a superior morality, a simpler life, a courageous joy, a devoted loyalty, and a self-sacrificing brotherly love. If the lives of Christians had not been superior in these respects to the common level of life about them the first spread of the Church would be inconceivable. What did our Lord say to his disciples on the Mount? "For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven." This is not a condition of entrance into a future heavenly state, it is a condition of membership in a present, witnessing body on the earth. — The Congregationalist.

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March 17, 1906

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