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النشر الإلكتروني

Besides you

It is all that is necessary. Do you think you can bother me by asking questions about the Bible? No. I will tell you frankly that there are things in it that I do not understand, but I will tell you something more important than your questioning: That if you will just try to live up to the things you can understand you will be kept busy doing good and will not have time to worry about the things that you do not understand. will be a great deal happier.

In traveling around the world I was interested in comparing our religion with other religions, and the fruits of our religion with the fruits of other religions. I came back with my faith strengthened and more sure, if possible, than when I started away from home, that that prophecy will yet be fulfilled that says, that every knee shall bow and every tongue confess. But you do not have to know about other religions. You do not have to compare ours as a moral code with other codes. I am glad that Christ did not require this, that God does not require it, that our Bible does not command it. It is made easy-"taste and see that the Lord is good.” I became a member of the Church when I was fourteen years old, and from that day to this I have retained my church membership. I do not want any one to take my life as a pattern, I am only sorry that it has as many imperfections as it has, but my friends, I want you to know that I give religion credit for all the good there is in me, and I take the blame myself for all the bad.

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Do not judge the life that is trying to shine through me by the clouded material through which it shines. I have reflected but feebly the light that I have received and I have been happy in proportion as I have been able to reflect it. I want you young men to ask yourselves this question: What is there in the life founded on the rejection of Christianity that yields you a larger dividend in all that is good than you can get out of a life that is built upon Christianity? Who is to be listened to? The man who has tried and is satisfied, or the man who will not try? If any of you are interested in a food preparation whose testimonial do you want? Do you want that of the man who can say, “I have eaten it and I like it,” or do you want that of a man who says, "I never tried it, but I know it's bad?" A man who has tried Christianity is willing to give a testimonial. Why should you put up against the testimonial of one who has tried, the testimonial of the one who says he never tried ? There is no human being who will not be better for the adoption of Christ's code. Raymond Robins tells us that Christianity can go down into industries and purify them where there is distress. And he is right. And I will say this: It can go up into the homes of luxury and take from them unnecessary expenditures, and show the people in them a higher life than they can get by the worship of material things. It is good for the rich. It is good for the poor. It is good for the young; it is good for the old. There is no time in life when this religion is not the Christian's stay and staff. I traveled in lands where Mohammedanism prevailed, in lands where Hinduism prevailed, in lands where Buddhism prevailed, and the lands where Confucianism prevailed. I saw the ripened fruits of four philosophies and I would not for all the money in this world take my family away from a Christian country and surround them with the environments that these religions have produced. The value of the Christian religion to us is beyond a sum that can be measured by figures.

My subject is "the claim of the Christian religion upon the young men of North America.” Why has religion a claim upon them? Because North America is entitled to the best and nothing less will satisfy our aspirations. We want no halfway fulfillment of God's promises; we want the entire and complete fulfillment. We want the people strong in body, for Christianity teaches us that we shall not squander our physical strength in the things that profit not; that we shall not waste our bodies by dissipation, or the time that may be employed for the enrichment of our lives. Christianity teaches us that this body of ours, though miserably linked with that which is so near the brute creation, must yet be for the indwelling of the Spirit. Our religion tells us that this mind that God has given us must be used to its utmost, not simply to increase our capacity for indulgence, but our ca


pacity for service. This Christianity teaches us that if we have a body only, no matter how perfect, we are poor; if we have only a body and mind, no matter how perfect, we are incomplete; that if we would measure up to the stature of man made in the image of God, we must be linked to the Creator by an ideal that moulds our lives. We must not be content with merely physical courage, the animals about us have that. We must have that attribute that leads us nearest to the throne of God, a moral courage that will bid us stand in the face of wrong, no matter how many are with it, and defy it, and if necessary, die, that we may triumph over it. It is only that kind of manhood that can make a nation great. No nation can be made great by men who do not realize the importance of keeping their bodies free from the effects of bad habits. You can never make a nation great even with men whose minds are trained if their training has but a selfish purpose behind it. A nation can only be great when its people are great, and people cannot be great unless developed in body, in mind, and in heart. Our religion comes, therefore, to strengthen every man, and every woman and every child; and I esteem it a privilege to bring to your attention the practical value-aye, the necessity for religion to guide life. I would not sell for any amount of money the environment of youth that gave me the inspiration of a Christian home; I would not part with, for any consideration, the value of that Bible that has given strength and courage to my life.

But, if I could have got along without it when I was a child, or could dispense with it now, there is a day coming when I must have it. It is when the shadows of night are falling, it is when the days of my pilgrimage approach their close, it is when I feel the chill of death creeping over my limbs, and know that the time is near at hand when I am to render an account of my life before the great God—and when that time comes, what book is there for me or you but the Bible? Are you interested in science? They will not read science to you on your deathbed. Are you interested in poetry? They will not give you any poetry in those closing hours. Are you interested in history? They will not recount to you the deeds of the past. interested in politics? No matter how hot the campaign is, you will forget it then; there will be something more important on your mind. When that time comes I want to have the Bible near. I appreciate all those things that I have spoken of. I have spent time in reading history and in reading poetry and in studying science, and I have a curious interest in the various theories that have been proposed in the matter of science, but I warn you now, if there is any pleasure in the Darwinian theory today, I do not want any one to come with Darwin's Descent of Man and read to me the story of man springing from an ape—no, I want him to bring the

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