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is also true that the germ of the institution was the burning faith of the man. Wilberforce speaks for them, one and all, when he wrote in his journal, “God Almighty has set before me two great objects, the suppression of the slave trade and the reformation of manners,” and when he wrote to his sister, “Be the love of Christ our talisman.”
Sometimes we can fix our eye on the time when the power of achievement for good entered the man with the inflow of vital religion to his soul. There was a time when an indifferent and formal young preacher at Kilmany suddenly waked to the real meaning of Christ's gospel, and the transformation was as complete as when some great magazine of combustibles receives the torch. For the dry wooden mass kindled and blazed and glowed with a flame that sent its warmth through all Scotland and its light to India and the world. It was Thomas Chalmers regenerated, a true believer in Christ. The easygoing kirkmen said, “Chalmers is mad”; but it was with the same madness that had infected Paul before him, and the whole company that under Christ have been revolutionizing the world.
For the world itself, in its present attitude and outlook, with its missions and beneficences and mighty working forces for good, is but the Wren-like monument of such a faith. Men have believed, and therefore they spoke; believed with all their being and spoke with all their power with tongue and pen and life. Their cause was as resistless as their faith was bright. They have labored while they lived, and conquered when they fell. For there was an invisible force which dungeons could not hold, sword and cannon could not kill, flames could not burn, nor waters drown. Borne on by such a faith as this — a faith which Christ's gospel itself inspires and maintains -- the gospel has made its way. Despised and persecuted by the despised race from which it sprung, it rose to life as the nation fell. Emerging from its native home, it made for the great cities that hug the Mediterranean, the seats of power and centres of civilization. Without one mortal weapon of offense or defense it boldly grappled with every wrong. It stood meekly unresisting when the empire ten times in succession threw its huge weight upon it, and then rose from the crush unharmed. It in turn threw itself upon the empire, mounted its throne, spread through and beyond its territory; "it gathered all genius and learning unto itself, and made the literature of the world its own ; it survived the inundation of the barbarian tribes, and conquered the world once more by converting the conquerors to the faith ; it survived the restoration of letters "; survived the corruptions of the Church itself; “survived an age of free inquiry and skepticism, and has long stood its ground in the field of argument, commanding the intelligent assent of the greatest minds that ever were "; and outwardly controlling the great empires that now control the earth. And to-day, it stands girded with youthful strength, waving the banner of the cross for a forward movement all along the line
upon the strongest entrenchments of the powers of darkness, hearkening to its Great Captain's command, “Go ye into all the world,” and to his promise, “I am with you alway."
Young Gentlemen of the Graduating Class : I invite you, and each of you, to join the goodly company of those who speak and act and live from profound and positive convictions, and especially upon the greatest issues. I invite you to go forth to your lifework with fixed and well-considered principles — principles worthy of the name, because they are thoroughly right and true and tried — principles in which you can put a confiding faith, and on which you can safely lay out, or lay down, your life. Join the great company of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.
Choose a pursuit you believe in, and act out your belief. Honor it, and it will honor you. Prepare for it in quiet trust. In it do a man's good work, believingly. Come out from the company of idlers and triflers and learn to labor and to wait. Learn that great secret of success, to “be ready when the opportunity comes." Here is the sphere for a silent, patient faith.
In whatever profession, be more than a professionalist; be also a true man with profound and positive convictions on all high things, which no professional policy shall prevent your speaking out, if need be, “in words as round and hard as cannon balls.”
And above all, let me invite you to ally yourself personally by a living faith to that one central Source of all high principle, holy motive, lofty aim, and noble endeavor — to him who stands out in his divine isolation as at once example, incentive, guide, helper, and reward, author and finisher of faith — him who presents himself to you and the whole world, saying, “I am the way, the truth, and the life" — him who is riding forth conquering and to conquer till every eye shall see him move — to him ally yourselves livingly and lovingly, and it shall be your privilege, your blessing, and your power. The prayer of that greatest of geniuses, Michael Angelo, is none too lowly or too trustful for you :
My unassisted heart is barren clay
LARGENESS OF HEART.
BACCALAUREATE SERMON, JUNE 22, 1884.
And God gave Solomon wisdom and understanding exceeding much, and largeness of heart, even as the sand that is upon the sea shore. — 1 KINGS 4: 29.
COLOMON is the great peace monarch of history. w His name stands for royal wisdom and magnificence. All kingly accomplishments seemed to unite in him : a knowledge of nature from the hyssop to the cedar; a knowledge of men that uttered three thousand proverbs; a culture that expressed itself in a thousand songs, and embodied itself in such sumptuous works as the temple, the several palaces, the House of the Forest of Lebanon and the furnishings of gold and silver, the gardens of Etham, the city of Palmyra, and the construction of costly aqueducts and massive fortifications; a judical sagacity that has become proverbial ; an organizing power that stretched his kingdom beyond all former limits and held it in hand forty years; an enterprise that sent his ships to far distant lands for precious freights; a statesmanship that allied him to the great powers, Egypt and Tyre, and levied tribute on all surrounding tribes; and a splendor of state that was the wonder and despair of his contemporaries. He was a merchant sovereign beside whom the Medici would seem but merchant princes. For a thousand years “the glory of Solomon " was traditional in Palestine. It permanently fired the Oriental heart, so