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But we wish to call special attention to the fact that the miracles of Christ are inseparably connected with His sayings, and that it is impossible to reject the one and hold on to the other. His miracles are quite as credible as His sayings; and it is clear that, if the former are untrue, the latter must also be so. It is a common view of deists, that Christ simply taught men their duty towards God, keeping Himself in the background; but this is quite opposed to the Gospel narratives. We find in all of them that much of Christ's teaching related to Himself, to His person, His mission, and its results. He insists upon Himself being the promised Messiah, and makes the admission of His personal authority the touchstone of discipleship. He says to Peter, “Whom do men say that I, the Son of man, am?” and when Peter replies, “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God," He answers, “Simon Barjona, flesh and blood have not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in Heaven.In that most solemn description of the Last Judgment, given in the 25th chapter of Matthew, He describes Himself in the most striking language

as the Judge of mankind, and pronounces doom on every human being, according as they have done it unto the least of these His brethren. He uniformly assumes the right of forgiving men's sins, and reading their secret thoughts. He makes faith in Himself the absolute condition of salvation, and expressly forbids any attempt to approach the Father except through Him. “I am the way, the truth and the life; no man cometh unto the Father but by Me." He describes Himself as the perfect likeness of the Father. He says to Philip, “He that hath seen Me hath seen the Father, and why sayest thou then, show us the Father?” In that solemn moment, when He stood before Caiaphas, with the shadow of the cross falling athwart His path, He abated not a jot of His claims; “nevertheless ye shall see the Son of man standing at the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven.” When the last scene closes, and He ascends to His Father from Mount Olivet, His parting words were, “ All power is given unto Me in heaven and earth; go ye, therefore, and teach all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father, of the Son and of the Holy Ghost, teaching

them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.”

This claim to supernatural powers runs through the whole of Christ's teaching, and yet it is combined in so marvellous a fashion with a life of humiliation, and so steady a refusal to use these powers for any purpose of self-aggrandisement, that we are constrained to say, with the Roman Centurion, “Truly this man was the Son of God.”

It is, however, a fact-surprising though it be —that men are to be found who appear to have drunk into the Spirit of Christ, who yet reject the miracles of the New Testament, and, indeed, question the authenticity of the whole framework of Christianity. The hyper-refinement of our day lias developed an extraordinary type of mind-a hybrid, so to speak, between reason and mysticism; and it would be unfair to deny that gleams of Divine light have reached the souls of some, from the glorious person of Christ, who yet question the truth of the Gospel narratives. But the great mistake they make—and many have fallen into it-is this: they hold that the Christian religion

may be universally taught in this mystical way, and that mankind may learn a purer faith by exploding its historical and dogmatic basis. That this is an entire delusion we have not the shadow of a doubt; and that it is held by a few highminded men, who have imbibed many of the precepts of Christ, we attribute to the common mistake of judging of universal human nature by the phenomena of one's own mind. This mystical Christianity, which they hold, is only rendered possible by the atmosphere of genuine belief which surrounds them. Were it not that the historical facts of Christianity are lodged in the public mind, and supply the motives to the great bulk of the earnest Christian life that exists, it would not be possible for even these few men to live on the ethereal cssence they have sublimed out of the system. They are quite unconsciously paying homage to the atmosphere of orthodox belief, which they inhale, despite their efforts to the contrary, and without which their visionary systems would crumble into dust. If they could succeed in demolishing the historic and doctrinal foundation of Christianity, and reduce it to that nebulous substance they profess to revere, they would be astonished to find even their platform of belief slipping from under their feet; they would discover, when too late, that they had unchained the tempest; and having loosened the only hold that religion can have on common minds—viz., an undoubting belief in its truth, they would stand aghast to see the rush of wickedness that would fill the vacant ground. Their flimsy theories would be swept away like cobwebs; having "sown the wind they would reap the whirlwind.” It is not impossible for a set of philosophic Deists to exist in the midst of a Christian community, holding the moral precepts of Christianity, and influenced powerfully by the ideal . beauty of Christ; but it is quite impossible for their descendants to hold the same ground, if the common framework of belief were swept away. No ungodly man could reach Christian faith by the devious path they climbed. It is possible to begin by a simple faith, and end in philosophic abstractions; but it is contrary to experience to begin by abstractions and end in simple faith The Encyclopedists, who preceded the French

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