A Word in Season

Those who would help their fellow men must do it with skill and consideration. In Proverbs it is said, "The thoughts of the wicked are an abomination to the Lord: but the words of the pure are pleasant words." The materialist who is exploiting mankind tries to make himself impressive by much boasting. He must arouse great expectations whence to reap prepayments, and be ready with excuses to cover over the arguments of the disappointed. But the real helper of the race is one who has for himself learned the greatness and goodness of God, and is fain to interpret the ways of God to men, for only in these may peace be known.

It is the peculiarity of mortal mind to oppose, criticize, persecute, and try to kill its real helpers. This rises possibly from two conditions—the individual's fear of the new because it is strange to him, and the fears of the class profiting by things as they are, lest their opportunities for gain may be superseded. When Jesus was condemned, it is to be remembered that the priests had stirred up the people who clamored for his crucifixion; and the record says, "The voices of them and of the chief priests prevailed. And Pilate gave sentence that it should be as they required." The priests feared for their settled positions, their prestige, their revenues, their power over the people, and they did not desire that the spiritual truth which Jesus disclosed should make headway.

The follower of the example of the Master will be careful in his method of approach to others, because if he is to succeed in doing good it must be under the guidance of "the Spirit of truth." When Christ Jesus spoke of the unseen guidance to which his disciples would be able to trust after he had risen beyond their sight, he said that they would not be left comfortless (or as orphans, which is the figure employed to express the sense of loss), since he assured them that unseen Spirit would be their actual comforter. Also he spoke of the mission of "the Spirit of truth," which he said was to reprove, or convince, the world "of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment." Sin he spoke of as unbelief, and the way to overcome unbelief is to show the effects of faith; as likewise the way to establish righteousness is to enlighten regarding Principle, and when this is done judgment is passed on the prince of this world, when none any more obey, or are guided by worldly considerations.

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August 9, 1919

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