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Our Father, God; our brother, Man:
Now o' days, the common sense discountenances the logic dilemma of the Mohammedan that burned the Alexandrian library: namely, if the books accorded with the Koran, they were superfluous; if not, they were pernicious. Rather pleasanter to contemplate is the humor of the late Hebrew Lord Mayor of London, who, in making the customary contributions, cheerfully included the one to the Society for the Conversion of the Jews. No doubt, he parted with the jewel consistency; but, in his reciprocity,- his recognition of the good which Christianity does for "sheep on the other side of the fence," he kept the Koh-i-noor of the crown of his heart-treasure. Fishers of men may properly "fling a sprat to catch a herring." Bishop William Warburton lost nothing by his playfully whispered concession to Lord Sandwich, puzzled for a definition in the debate on the Test Law: "Orthodoxy is my doxy; heterodoxy is another man's doxy." Nor President Hayes, by saying in the face of partisans, “He serves his party best who serves his country best." It is becoming a popular sentiment that nothing is gained to religion by branding Justin Martyr "heterodox," though he declared the Logos was manifested before it appeared in Jesus. Not in secular politics alone do whole congregations "wander and apply" Goldsmith's animadversion on Burke,
Who born for the universe narrowed his mind,
W. H. H. Murray's remark, "To abuse another man's piety is a sorry way to prove your own," was also a seed dropped in good soil: it outgrows hostile sowings of tares, and finds welcome garners. More and more is getting appreciated the generous exclamation of O. B. Frothingham: "How cheering the summons to render full justice to the aspirations of mankind; to bring harmony out of the discordant utterances of faith; to demonstrate the fraternity of earnest thinkers and deep feelers in all time!" And clear and sunny above dispersing fogs of olden dark days-above both odium theologicum
and odium scepticum · - stand forth wise words of Jefferson: "Error of opinion may be tolerated where reason is left free to combat it.” And of Lincoln: “With charity for all, with malice toward none, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right." And of Judge Thomas Russell, at the recent Plymouth celebration: "And we, honoring where we cannot always follow, admiring where we cannot all agree, reverence the belief of our fathers. And to all attacks and to all ridicule we reply,- and we love to repeat it,- The excesses of faith are better than the best thoughts of unbelief, and even the errors of faith may be imputed to the founders of a nation for righteousness and power." And, finally, the accordant harmony of Tennyson:
O thou that after toil and storm
Mayst seem to have reached a purer air,
Nor cares to fix itself in form,
Thus much as to toleration and reason.
But, at the threshold of
our study of the subject, we are met by another preliminary inquiry; namely, as to the relation of reason and faith. This, then, shall constitute the topic of the first chapter.
SOUTH BOSTON, Feb. 22, 1883.
B. F. B.
In studying the Bible, what is the function of Faith, and what that of Reason?
What is the chronological order of the early records of the life and teachings of Jesus?
What two diverse opinions as to the circumstances of the writing and of the writers of
What is the order of the principal events narrated in the four canonical Gospels?
What two views as to the exemption of narrations concerning Jesus from the ordinary
liability to accretion; (and herein) what may safely be considered the uses of
CHAPTER XI. DEIFICATION. 58-64.
What threefold classification of men's views of God and the expression of Jesus,
CHAPTER XII. PREMONITION. 65-67.
How does John the Baptist rank in the order of prophets and of martyrs?
Did John the Baptist belong to any secret order whose rites would suggest to him the
ordinance of Baptism, and what the possible relation of Jesus thereto?
What are the eight principal views concerning the temptation of Jesus, and in what
two convenient categories? (And herein) what is the effect of success and of
What three forms of temptation would be likely to arise and to recur "for a season"
in the mind of a young man, if he were placed in the then circumstances of Jesus?
Wherein are Introspection and Self-renunciation, as exemplified by Jesus, effective
toward harmonizing the lower human tendencies with the higher and resisting
What are the three principal views concerning the existence of a personal devil, and
the teachings of Jesus in general thereon?
What are the different Orthodox and other leading metaphysical views concerning the
Why did Jesus choose Capernaum for the beginning of his public ministry, and how
In opening the gospel work, what were the personal habits of Jesus; and what the
What two views concerning the development of Christ's character and mission?
What other explanation of the fact of Christ's use of approximative language?
Where, when, and how were the principal discourses of Jesus delivered?
Wherein and what the regenerating tendencies of the indoctrination of faith in Christ
CHAPTER XXVI. EVOLUTION. 125-129.
What is meant in the Beatitudes by the "kingdom of heaven," and what the prog-
What is the most important characteristic of the Sermon on the Mount, and what the