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[Rev. Edward Payson Drew, D.D., in The Advance]

Do you doubt the progress of civilization during the past nineteen hundred years? The position of honor given to the world's toilers; the reverential regard for honorable womanhood; the compassionate love for little children so prevalent today throughout the world; the growing condemnation of the wars of conquest; the magnificent modern crusades against the threefold curse of intemperance, immorality, and poverty; the growing passion of all the civilized world to lift up humanity to new standards of enlightenment, morality, democracy, purity in politics, international brotherhood, and universal peace—what can possibly be our interpretation of these signs of our times save this: under the leadership and inspiration of Christ the world's civilization is surely progressing; falteringly, stumblingly, suffering severe and appalling relapse, nevertheless progressing toward the standards and ideals of that Christ. Far, far away still those standards gleam. No nation has advanced far toward the goal; but the civilization of the world is striving forward. The Master himself said it must come slowly even as the seed grows: "first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear." We see not yet much more than the blade, but thank God for the blade!

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October 28, 1916
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