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an order that every clergyman should, on Sunday, March 21, during or subsequent to the sermon, speak of the significance of the day as the celebration of the centennial of the birth of Emperor Wilhelm I, call upon the congregation to recall with gratitude the blessings they had received under his reign, offer a prayer of thanksgiving, and cause to be sung one of two hymns designated. Now some of the Hannoverians have never been reconciled to the events connected with the annexation of that province to the new empire, and consequently have no great feeling of kindliness for the old emperor's memory. Nevertheless, all but three of the clergy managed to live up to the letter of the consistorial decree. These three stated to the authorities beforehand that they could not conform to the requirements, but were in return notified that nothing was demanded of them contrary to God's word or their consciences, and that obedience would be expected. When the day came all of them did something that was required, but none of them all. In defense they pleaded their conscientious scruples and their well-known loyalty. Nevertheless, all of them were dismissed, though with a pension for three years, provided they did not meantime secure new positions with salary equal to the pension. The vast majority of the German newspapers of all political and ecclesiastical tendencies condemn the procedure, and some of them declare that the action of the consistory is in direct contravention of the recent orders of the present emperor that the clergy shall not meddle in politics. The instance is instructive as to the disadvantages of a connection between Church and State, and also as to the real degree of religious liberty enjoyed in the Fatherland. Obedience, it seems, is to be exacted according to the will of governmental authorities without regard to individual scruples.
Defective Application of Christianity to Practical Life. A German writer, speaking of the unfavorable conditions of the laboring classes in the Fatherland, brings out in striking contrast the superiority of English to German applied Christianity. He makes the point maintained by the Consumers' League that the so-called employers are only the agents of the people, and that the conditions they make for the laboring classes are, in the final analysis, the conditions which the masses will have made. But he proceeds to point out that the hack drivers have no accommodations in Germany except those furnished by the saloon keepers, thus encouraging drunkenness. He blames the German people for the fact that the waitresses in restaurants are mostly fallen women, while in England—and he might have added in America—a woman known to be morally astray cannot secure such a position. There is no doubt that Germany is behind in these particulars, but America needs improvement also; where is there an open door for the workingman? The insistence upon the responsibility of each individual for the betterment of social conditions is an essential to progress.
SUMMARY OF THE REVIEWS AND MAGAZINES.
In the profitable retrospect which a new year brings it is natural to recall the weighty incidents which have happened to the Church, as well as to individuals, in the past twelve months. “Every now and then," writes D. L. Leonard, D.D., in the Missionary Review of the World for January, "it comes to pass that, after many days marked by absence of progress, or even by retrogression, suddenly the kingdom begins to move forward by leaps and bounds. . . . Who that observes and reflects can doubt that we are in the midst of just such a pregnant period ? The claim may safely be made that the twelvemonth just ended is to be eminent among these years of destiny. It is more than doubtful if another can be named to match it as the period of occurrences so many, so diverse, so far apart in longitude and latitude, and yet in such close coöperation for the effectual spread of the multitudinous good things of the Gospel to the ends of the earth.” Giving to his article the title of “Five Epochal Events of 1898,” Dr. Leonard proceeds to indicate some conspicuous “happenings” which have a bearing upon the spread of Christ's kingdom in the world. The first he specifies as “the Spanish-American War.” Such opportunities has it opened for Christian propagandism that “the Churches of America must rise at once, and with energy and zeal tenfold increased, to the sublime height of these new opportunities and obligations.” The second noticeable event of the past year is the “ Anglo-American friendship.” The fact signifies much. “Here are two of the mightiest peoples on earth, numbering already 120,000,000, and a few generations hence to be increased twofold, fourfold, tenfold. This race is already dominant over some 16,000,000 square miles, or one third of the earth's land surface, and ruling about 500,000,000, or again not far from one third of the earth's inhabitants. The Anglo-Saxon is easily the greatest civilizer and Christianizer extant, was evidently chosen to be just this, and for this high calling has been in training, lo, these fifteen hundred years.” The third epochal event of 1898 is “the Czar's proposal ” for the disarm. ing of the nations. “The future historian will recall that, as the nineteenth century was closing, ... the czar of all the Russias, first of crowned heads since the creation, published his protest against the maintenance of huge standing armies, and so took a step in the interest of peace and fraternity.” The fourth incident has been “the reformation in China,” prophesying great results for the race. “Radical reforms are evidently on foot in the Celestial empire which may be hindered, but cannot be defeated.” And the last of these epochal events has been “the opening of the Sudan.” No great change of policy is to be anticipated from the Fashoda incident. “It is far more reasonable to expect to hear, ere long, of the proclamation of a protectorate over the
30,000,000 of Sudanese and Egyptians, to continue till these hosts are fitted for self-rule. . . . To Britain then will belong nearly one third of the Dark Continent, with well-nigh one half of its 160,000,000 degraded inhabitants committed to Anglo-Saxon hands to be redeemed and enlightened. . . . Ethiopia shall stretch out her hands to God." Of these five great events, says the author, any one “were sufficient to give the year a unique position in the passing decades; but when they all are found within the compass of a single twelvemonth they stand for more than the happenings of some entire centuries. They show in what a marvelous way our God is marching on among the nations."
In the Erpository Times for October, 1898, Professor J. Agar Beet replies to Dr. Petavel's criticisms on Dr. Beet's teaching in his book, The Last Things, concerning immortality and the fate of the wicked. In his reply Professor Beet says: “On page 193 of my book I give the result of my research as follows: "To sum up, the writers of the New Testament agree to describe, with more or less definiteness, the punishment to be inflicted in the day of Christ's return as actual suffering and as final exclusion from the blessedness of the saved.' So far Dr. Petavel agrees with me. But he goes beyond me by asserting that the Bible teaches, not only the final exclusion of the lost, but their final extinction; and invites me to join him in this position. This step, however, I can not take until I find in Holy Scripture solid ground on which to tread. This, after much careful search, I have not found.” Dr. Beet does not find, either within or without the Bible, any clear disproof of, or serious objection to, Dr. Petavel's doctrine. · But he says that this absence of disproof does not justify acceptance of the teaching in question as true and reliable; that to accept a statement as true simply because it cannot be disproved is a common and dangerous mistake; and be repeats: “I therefore differ both from those who assert that the lost will ultimately sink into unconsciousness and from those who assert that they will continue in endless suffering. On these matters the Scriptures, as I read them, give no decisive judgment. They give no ground for hope that the agony of the lost will ever cease; but they do not plainly and categorically assert its endless continuance. In Dr. Petavel's books and open letter, and in the Bible, I cannot find anything which justifies one step further than this." Dr. Beet uses the word “ruin” as the best translation of the Greek word ambaela, as used throughout the New Testament, and says “ruin” is a nearer equivalent than the rendering in the Accepted and Revised Versions, “destruction," "perdition,” “ lost.” “The word means neither extinction of consciousness nor endless conscious torments, but simply the loss of all that makes existence worth having." In his exposition of the future punishment of sin Dr. Beet gives only a small place to the teaching of the Old Testament, not for want of authority, but because so little is found therein which adds to the plain and abundant teaching of the New Testament. After prolonged search he is unable to find in the Bible words which, describing the fate of the lost, imply clearly their final extinction. He says: “There are passages and groups of passages which at first sight seem to teach the extinction of the lost or the ultimate extinction of evil; as there are others which describe their continued suffering, without any hint of its cessation. But in neither case do the words of Holy Scripture justify confident assertion. And he who speaks in God's name is bound to go no further than the written word clearly warrants.” Dr. Beet holds that the popular doctrine of the necessary, intrinsic and endless permanence of the human soul is not taught in the Bible; and says that the Christian pulpit ought not to go beyond the clear teaching of Holy Scripture.
10-FIFTH SERIES, VOL. XV.
The opening article of the New World for December is “Imperial Democracy,” by David Starr Jordan. Its vigorous trend may be inferred from the following quotation: “So far as the Philippines are concerned, the only righteous thing to do would be to recognize the independence of the Philippines under American protection, and to lend them our army and navy and our wisest counselors, our Dewey and our Merritt, not our politicians, but our jurists, our teachers, with foresters, electricians, manufacturers, mining experts, and experts in the various industries. Then, after they have had a fair chance and shown that they cannot care for themselves, we should turn them over quietly to the paternalism of peace-loving Holland or peace-compelling Great Britain. We should not get our money back, but we should save our honor. The only sensible thing to do would be to pull out some dark night and escape from the great problem of the Orient as suddenly and as dramatically as we got into it.” R. M. Wenley follows with an appreciative article on “ John Caird.” In his paper on “Religious Ideals and Religious Unity" J. W. Chadwick concludes with the sentiment, “Of all unities of the spirit that is the best which gathers into one great family all those who try with patient minds to know what things are true, and with courageous hearts to do the best they know.” W. B. Smith follows with an article on “Harnack versus Harnack," whose claim is that in the work of the great critic somewhat recently issued “there are two Harnacks, one speaking in the preface, one reasoning in the volume itself, and these in no wise resemble each other.” The contention of “The Religion of Mr. Kipling,” by W. B. Parker, is that certain feelings “which make up the body of our faith” have been uttered afresh for us by Kipling “in poems which, like the ‘Recessional,' have at once voiced the prayers and solemn hopes of our own generation and given their maker his chief title to a place among the greater vames of English poetry.” The concluding papers of the number are “Adin Ballou and the Hopedale Community,” by G. L. Cary; “'Beyond Good and Evil,!”
by C. C. Everett, or a study of the philosophy of Frederick Nietzoche; “Nanak and the Faith of the Sikhs,” by J. T. Bixby; and “Paul and the Jerusalem Church,” by J. Warschauer. “To recognize the greatness of Paul,” the last author argues, “it is not an indispensable condition that we should find his opponents guilty of crass imbecility or malignity for its own sake.”
PROMINENT among the articles in the North American for December is a discussion of “Our Indian Problem,” by Dr. Lyman Abbott. The reservation system he declares to be “wholly bad." His indictment against it is fourfold. The Indian Bureau “is, and always has been, a political machine, whose offices are among the spoils which belong to the victors; ” the federal executive is peculiarly unfitted for administering a paternal government “over widely scattered local communities;” this paternalism “is thoroughly bad for the Indian, whose interests it is supposed to serve;" and, lastly, it is impossible to maintain the reservation system. Dr. Abbott's solution of existing evils is the abolishment of the reservation system. “Apply to the solution of the Indian problem the American method; treat the Ivdian as other men are treated; set him free from his trammels; cease to coddle him; in a word, in lieu of paternal protection, which does not protect, and free rations, which keep him in beggary, give him justice and liberty and let him take care of himself."
FOR general interest the January Chautauquan maintains its high average. The opening article, by J. C. Thornley, is entitled “The Old Bailey,” and by its vivid illustrations emphasizes the tragedy of human suffering. T. Raleigh, D.C.L., follows with an article on “Lord Melbourne;" Professor L. H. Batchelder, in "The Central Element of Organized Matter,” takes" a little excursion into the fascinating country of the carbon compounds;" Mary H. Krout discusses “English Journalism;" and O. F. Bianco tells of “Shooting Stars.” Bishop Rowe, of the Diocese of Alaska, writes of the “ The Yukon Country,” in interesting description, and Mrs. M. Burton Williamson continues her discussion of “Some American Women in Science.” The article is interesting in its portraits.
THE Conference Examiner continues its efficient work as a promoter of ministerial education. The November-December number includes in its table of contents: “ The Study of Shakespeare for Preachers,” by Rev. S. N. McAdoo; “The Revival and Its Methods,” by Rev. J. W. Heard; " The Newer Education and the Ministry,” by President W. J. Tucker, D.D.; “Guarding the Conference Door,” by Rev. W. H. Slingerland, Ph.D.; "Religious Formula," by Rev. W. G. Loyd; “Special Theological Encyclopedia;”
" " Making a Sermon Grow," by the Editor: and “Defects in Pulpit Prayer.” C. M. Heard, D.D., is Editor.