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together and their minds are brought into daily contact. The presence of such a company of young men waiting to receive instruction is a constant stimulus to their teachers to do thorough and careful work, and if the school is vitalized with Christian feeling, convictions and purpose, along with the education of the intellect there is being carried forward the more difficult and important heart-education, which must always be the crowning preparation for Christian work. Students thus united one to another in study will be united in sympathy and mutual assistance in their future lifework, and thus their personal bond of fellowship will become a bond of fellowship between the Churches to which they minister.
In raising up a body of Christian workers shall we chiefly depend for material upon men converted from Confucianism in early manhood, or shall we look to those who have been trained from childhood in Christian schools? Experience can be quoted on either side, showing the advantages and the dangers of either method. Men converted from Confucianism ought to be wise to lead their former fellow-Confucianists to the higher light of Christ. Their experience in contact with men and in the actual conflicts of life ought to give them a robustness of character and a skill in meeting men, which young students, reared in the partial seclusion of schoollife, can only acquire in later years. But on the other hand it should be remembered that men who have received their education in Confucian schools have received a narrow and imperfect education. Their memories have been burdened, their imaginations have been neglected, and they have learned to think along the deep-worn ruts of "thus say the sages." The stamp of Confucianism and inertia has been deeply impressed upon their thoughts and habits. As Christian workers they are inclined to take counsel of their fears rather than of their hopes, and they are slow in coming under the aggressive, revolutionary spirit of a living Christianity. Boys educated in Christian schools ought to acquire all that is best in the Confucian classical literature without coming under the benumbing influence of Confucian schools. They ought further to have their memories stored, their intellects quickened and their imaginations enriched with a wide range of knowledge that lies outside of the Confucian curriculum of study. When the study of the Chinese classics and of Western learning is combined with the devout and sympathetic study of the Bible there are formative influences fitted to operate on the minds and hearts of the young that give the highest promise of future usefulness. Reverence for the past is united to a living hope for the future. A new sense of dignity is begotten in the consciousness that there is a divine work going on in the world and a divine call to every follower of Christ to have a part in it. Life has a higher
meaning than Confucianism had given to it, since it is life in Christ and life for Christ, and life that opens out into the eternal life. beyond. Manliness no longer means self-culture to the end that one may be praised and admired of men, but it means a life that is fragrant with the odor of labor and sacrifice for the good of others. Young men thus educated have doubtless much to learn as Christian teachers in the hard contact with heathenism, but if they have truly caught the spirit of their divine Master and their minds and hearts have responded to the influences by which they have been surrounded, their lives are set free from their bondage to the past, and in their liberty in Christ, in thought and word and action, they are fitted to become wise and efficient leaders of the Church in its ever widening fields of conquest.
How should young men be selected to receive training for Christian work? All will agree that the choicest young men of the Church should be selected for such training, but missionaries will differ widely among themselves as to their standard of selection. Doubtless the consensus of experience will emphasize the necessity for great caution and discrimination in putting young men in training for the ministry. If in any given case there is a well-defined doubt as to the reality or the depth of religious experience, or as to character, or disposition, or mental fitness, the danger of caution and delay in the selection of men is manifestly less than that of haste and over-confidence in untried men. Worthy men can be brought forward at a later date without further harm to the Church than that of a few years of delay in preparation, while unworthy men cannot be removed from their positions without great spiritual loss to the Church. These considerations serve to emphasize the importance of preparatory Christian schools. In these schools pupils are under the eyes and under the formative influence of the missionaries for a succession of years, and when they are selected for the work of the ministry the selection is wisely made with reference to their past Christian record. These suggestions are more than theory. They are the outgrowth of the experience of my own mission. The best students that have been educated in the mission theological school have had a preparatory training in the mission schools of from seven to ten years, and in my memory but one out of twenty men has disappointed the hopes of the missionaries. All the others are making an excellent record as Christian workers in the various stations of the mission.
What preparatory studies should be required of students as introductory to their special theological education? However we may emphasize the advantages of preparatory education in Christian schools, a percentage of the candidates for theological education will
be converts from Confucianism, with at least a partial training in the Confucian literature. Such students, though of bright minds and of an earnest Christian purpose, are illy fitted to enter at once upon the advanced studies of a theological school. They need to study geography and history that they may know something of the world in which they live and which is the great theatre of the divine activity in setting up His heavenly kingdom. They ought also to be made acquainted at least with the outlines of Jewish history as a preparation for the coming of Christ. They should further become acquainted with the life, the journeys and the works of Christ, including a knowledge of the geography of Palestine. I would also emphasize the importance of the study of natural theology in this preparatory stage. Nature is full of voices that witness to the power, and wisdom, and goodness of God, and the student whose ears are early opened to the testimony of these voices finds a powerful corroboration of the witness of Scripture to the universality of Christianity and the divinity of its origin. And he will find this knowledge in the years of the future to be a valuable weapon in his hands to use against the doctrines of Confucian pantheism, which sees nothing higher in the orderly operations of nature than the spontaneous inter-action of law and matter. The preparatory studies above outlined would require two years for their mastery and would equip students with a stock of knowledge and a mental discipline which would fit them to comprehend and appreciate the advanced studies of the theological school.
In my own mission chief dependence has been placed upon our mission academy and college located at Tungcho, to supply students properly prepared in culture and Christian experience, to enter upon the studies of the theological school. These students, if they have completed the required courses of study, have been in training under Christian teachers for eleven years-four years in preparatory schools at the various stations, three years in the mission academy and four years in the college. Three lines of study have been pursued. As much work has been accomplished in the study of the Confucian classical literature, Chinese history and composition as would be accomplished in a Confucian school within the same time. The principal classics have been memorized and explained, and a careful training has been given in composition, both in the spoken and in the literary style. Parallel with these studies another line of studies has been pursued in geography, history, arithmetic, algebra, geometry, trigonometry, natural philosophy, astronomy, geology, chemistry, biology, physiology. Instruction has been given in mental and moral philosophy, and the ethical teachings of Christianity have been compared with those of Confucianism. Natural theology has
been studied and illustrated from the whole range of the physical sciences. Political economy and international law have been taught, and the laws of national prosperity and of international fellowship have been pointed out, showing that the doctrines of Christianity have their application in the lives of nations as they have in the lives of individuals. The third and most important line of study has been the Bible. The Gospels and selections from the Epistles and Psalms have been memorized. Three years have been given to the study of the Old and New Testament with the Bible as the textbook. The Life of Christ is studied, and the Book of Acts, showing that the foundations of the Christian Church were laid in the world by the hand of God and not by the hand of man. Christian evidences have been taught, pointing, in proof of the divine origin of Christianity, to the self-witnessing power of Christian truth, and to its transforming power in the lives of individuals and in the institutions of society. Students who have conscientiously completed such a course of study have acquired a range of knowledge and a mental and spiritual discipline, which fits them to pursue with profit and appreciation the higher range of theological study.
What lines of study should be pursued in theological schools? The missionary as a theological teacher should study with care his Confucian and Buddhistic environment and should train his students to understand the relation of Christian truth to the ethical and religious thought of his countrymen. The missionary should further guard himself against the natural tendency to spread out before his pupils lines of Western philosophical and theological speculation, familiar to himself, but which have no clear adaptation to Chinese thought and which distract rather than edify the learner.
Christianity on the human side was an evolution from the Jewish religious life. The great lessons of the divine purpose and providence were taught in the Old Testament Scriptures. The theological student should therefore become familiar with the history of the Jewish people, with its ritual of worship in its typical significance and with prophesy as a preparation for the coming of Christ.
Biblical exegesis must always have an important place in theological study. Such exegesis will be chiefly devoted to the study of the New Testament. If the life and works of Christ have been previously studied with care the critical study of the Gospel of John will give to the student a vivid apprehension of the mind and heart of Christ as the world's great Shepherd offering up His life that he might gather His lost sheep back again into the heavenly fold. The Book of Romans should be thoroughly mastered as the fullest and the most orderly presentation of the central truths of Christian theology. The Book of Hebrews should be mastered,
showing the relation between the Jewish temple and its ritual of worship and the sacrificial offering of Christ to atone for the sins of men. The central theme of the Book of Romans is justification through a living faith in Christ, while that of the Book of Hebrews is Christ Himself, who mediated the new covenant of grace in His own blood. The student who has grasped these two central truths of Christianity will be a safe and successful religious teacher. Other books of the New Testament can be studied more rapidly to learn their beautiful lessons of love and hope, of gentleness and patience, of diligence in Christian service and of wisdom and circumspection in all of the relations of life.
Theology should be taught in an orderly arrangement of its inter-related doctrines, but fortunately the Chinese language does not easily lend its assistance to the theological professor in drawing a distinction between systematic and biblical theology. May the day never come when theological students in China are taught that there is any source of theology other than the inspired Word of God. Men must use their minds to understand revealed truth, to compare and interpret the teachings of Scripture and so to combine related truths into an orderly system, but the outcome must be a system of biblical theology and not a system of theology in which human reason and speculation have a co-ordinate place with the teachings of Scripture. The inductive method of study in the physical sciences has proven itself to be the master-key with which many of the mysteries of nature have been unlocked. This method may be employed with the happiest results in theological study. Chinese students are not interested in Western theological speculation, but they are deeply interested in and profited by the study of the progress of doctrine in the Old and New Testament Scriptures, noting the operation of the law of evolution in the divine revelation and observing that higher truths come into view when the times are ripe for their reception.
Those who are to become leaders of the Church of Christ in China should be made acquainted with the history of the Church universal. Next in importance to the teachings of the inspired Scriptures are the lessons that are learned by the thoughtful student in the study of the history of the Christian Church, of its sublime conflict with heathenism in the early centuries, of its victories even in death, of its later external triumph, preparing the way for its internal defeat, of its compromise with heathenism in its religious teachings and in its social practices, of the long ages that followed of darkness and shame, as the divine punishment for forgetting its first love, of the great modern reformation, gathering strength with the centuries, until the Church again hears the command of the