God's Law the Finality

When Jesus was brought to Jerusalem by his parents to become "a son of the law" the insight of this child made the rabbis in the temple wonder. When later as a man he himself appeared as a rabbi or teacher, his spiritual interpretations were opposed by scribes and Pharisees. They had a vast mass of traditions, glosses, interpretations, and commentaries, making the natural complexity of mortal mind beliefs into a "confusion worse confounded," so that the Master said, "Thus have ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition."

One of the Pharisees named Nicodemus came to visit Jesus, but dared not come with observation in the daytime. By night he came to find out if he could the mystery of godliness, which is after all no mystery but, if one might so call it, a simplicity,—quite patent to a child. Curiously, the thing simple and straight cannot be comprehended by one who deals in duplicity and puts trust in human scheming and runs for protection into "the refuge of lies." James reminds us that "a double minded man is unstable in all his ways." A small number of Anglo-Saxons who are single minded, scattered among some three hundred millions in India, interpret government to them because they understand the simplicity of justice and make promises not to deceive but as uttering truth, and because they stand by their word. The psalm speaks of the citizen of Zion who "sweareth to his own hurt, and changeth not," who will fulfill his promise even at disadvantage to himself because a promise is a promise. The complex, confused, polytheistic minds of those who trust more to mesmerism than to fair dealing in the open, being unable to rely on one another have come to rely on justice and law interpreted by those whose grasp of life's fundamental simplicity is in advance of theirs.

"Sanctify yourselves"
February 8, 1919

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