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saved the world.

Before Jesus could utilise this love He had
to create it, and this was not accomplished
either by His example or His teaching. The
effect of His awful purity was terror: * Depart
from me,' said St. Peter, ' for I am a sinful man,
O Lord.' The result of three years' teaching
was perplexity : an average apostle asked for a
theophany: 'Show us the Father, and it suf-
ficeth us.' Holiness compels awe, wisdom com-
pels respect; they do not allure. Nothing can
create Life but Life ; nothing can beget Love
but Love. He that is not loved hates; he
that is loved, loves, is a law of experience. As
the earth gives out the heat which it has re-
ceived from the sun, so the devotion of Jesus'
disciples to Him in all ages has been the return
of His immense devotion to them. He lavish-
ed on His first disciples a wealth of love in His
friendship; He sealed it with His sacrifice of
Himself upon the cross. * Greater love hath
no man than this, that a man lay down his life
for his friends.' ' I am the good Shepherd ;


the good Shepherd giveth His life for the sheep.'
Twelve men came into His intimacy ; in eleven
he kindled a fire that made them saints and
heroes, and the traitor broke his heart through
remorse, so he also must have loved. But Jesus
expected that His love would have a wider
range than the fellowship of Galilee, and that
the world would yield to its spell. It was not
for St. John, His friend, Jesus laid down His
life ; it was for the Race into which He had
been born and which He carried in His heart.
No one has ever made such a sacrifice for
Humanity. No one has dared to ask such a
recompense. The eternal Son of God gave
Himself without reserve, and anticipated that
to all time men would give themselves for Him.
He proposed to inspire His Race with a per-
sonal devotion, and that profound devotion was
to be their salvation. * Give me a cross where-
on to die,* said Jesus, ' and I will make thereof
a throne from which to rule the world.' The
idea was once at least caught most perfectly in
an early Christian gem, where, on a blood-red
stone the living Christ is carved against His
cross ; a Christ with the insignia of His imperial
majesty. Twice was Jesus' imagination power-


fully affected — once by the horrors of the cross,
when He prayed, ' O my Father, if it be pos-
sible, let this cup pass from me ' ; that was
the travail of His soul — once by the magnetic
attraction of the cross, when He cried, * And
I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all
men unto me * ; this is the endless reward of
His travail.

The passion for Jesus has no analogy in com-
parative religion ; it has no parallel in human
experience. It is a flame of unique purity and
intensity. Thomas does not believe that Jesus
is the Son of God, or that, more than any other
man, He can escape the hatred of fanaticism ;
but he must share the fate of Jesus. * Let us
also go,' said this morbid sceptic, * that we may
die with Him.' At the sight of His face seven
devils went out of Mary Magdalene ; for the
blessing of His visit, a chief publican gave half
his goods to the poor. When a man of the
highest order met Jesus he was lifted into the
heavenly places and became a Christed man,
whose eyes saw with the vision of Christ, whose
pulse beat with the heart of Christ. Browning
has nothing finer than *A Death in the Desert,'
wherein he imagines the love of St. John to


Jesus. No power is able to rouse the apostle
from his last sleep, neither words nor cordials.
Then one has a sudden inspiration : he brings
the Gospel and reads into the unconscious ear,
* I am the resurrection and the life,'

with the effect of an instantaneous charm:

* Whereat he opened his eyes wide at once
And sat up of himself and looked at us.*

This man had leant so long on Jesus' bosom
— some seventy years — that at the very sound
of His words the soul of Jesus* friend came up
from the shadow of death. It is the response
of the flower of the Race to Jesus.

This passion is placed beyond comparison,
because it is independent of sight. St. Paul
denied the faith that was once dear to him, and
flung away the world that was once his ambi-
tion, to welcome innumerable labours and ex-
haust the resources of martyrdom, for the sake
of one whom he had never seen, save in mystical
vision, and formerly hated unto the shedding of
blood. Men were lit as torches in Nero's gar-
den, and women flung to the wild beasts of the
amphitheatre ; and for what ? For a system,
for a cause, for a Church ? They had not


enough knowledge of theory to pass a Sunday-
school examination ; they had no doctrine of
the Holy Trinity, nor of the Person of Jesus,
nor of His Sacrifice, nor of Grace. They died
in their simplicity for Him * Whom having not
seen ye love,' and the name of the Crucified
was the last word that trembled on their dying
lips. With an amazing candour Jesus had
warned His disciples : ' Ye shall be brought
before governors and kings for My sake. . . .
And ye shall be hated of all men for My name's
sake.' With a magnificent confidence Jesus
encouraged His disciples, ' He that endureth to
the end shall be saved. . . . Whosoever
therefore shall confess me before men, him will
I confess also before my Father which is in
heaven.* The warning and' the promise were
both fulfilled in the history of the disciples' pas-
sion. * Christianus sum,' confesses the martyr,
and then the hoarse refrain * Christianus ad
leones.* But Perpetua sees a ' great ladder of
gold reaching from earth to heaven,' and on its
highest round stands the Good Shepherd ; while
Saturus is brought to the throne of the Lord
Jesus and * gathered to His embrace.* ' Men,*
says Mr. Lecky, ' seemed indeed to be in love


with death. Believing they were the wheat of
God, they panted for the day when they should
be ground by the teeth of wild beasts into the
pure bread of Christ.' Love of life and love of
kin, fear of pain and fear o^ death, were power-
less before this talisman ' For my sake.*

This sublime passion did not die with the
sacrifice of the martyrs, a mere hysteric of Re-
ligion, for it has continued unto this day the
hidden spring of all sacrifice and beauty in the
Christian life. The immense superstitions of
the Middle Ages were redeemed by the love
of Jesus, radiant in the life of St. Francis,
reflected from the labours of the ' Friends
of God.* There was a glory over all the
bitter controversies of the sixteenth century,
because on the one side piety desired a spiritual
access to Jesus* Person ; and on the other,
piety longed for the comfort of His Real
Presence. Both the excessive ceremonialism
and the vulgar sensationalism, which are
the two poles of modern religion, may be
pardoned, because the High Churchman at his
altar and the evangelist at the street corner are
one in their utter devotion to Jesus. Not only
has the best theology been fed by this spirit (so


that Bonaventura, questioned regarding his
learning, pointed to the crucifix), and the living
hymnology been its incarnation (so that to
remove the name of Jesus were to leave no
fragrance) ; but all the vast and varied philan-
thropy of public Christianity and the sweet and
winsome graces of private life have been the
fruit of this unworldly emotion. * For my sake/
has opened a new spring of conduct, from
which has flowed the heroism and saintliness of
nineteen centuries. When Jesus founded His
religion on personal attachment, it seemed a
fond imagination : the perennial vitality of
Christianity has been His vindication.

This perpetual passion in the hearts of His
disciples implies the mystical presence of Jesus,
who promised, ' A little while, and ye shall not
see me, and again a little while, and ye shall see
me, because I go to the Father,' and * Lo, I am
with you alway, even unto the end of the world.'
The presence of the living Christ, the object of
adoration and service, has been wonderfully
realised by the mystics, and distinctly held forth
in the sacraments, but it is apt to be obscured
in the consciousness of the Church by two dif-
ferent influences. One is a mechanical theology


which builds every act of Christ into the struc-
ture of a system till no virtue comes from the
flowing garments of His life, because they are
nothing but the grave-clothes of a dead Lord.
The other is an idealising criticism, which
evaporates the Person of Christ in His teaching,
and while it may leave us a master, certainly
denies us a Lord. This were to cast Religion
back on its former condition when it was either
an invention of the scribes or the philosophers,
and to barter the indescribable charm of Chris-
tianity to secure a creed or to disarm unbelief.
It is to reduce the religion of Jesus to the
impotence of Judaism or Confucianism: it is
to sell Jesus again without the thirty pieces
of silver.

Jesus' idea lifts Christianity above the plane
of arid discussion and places it in the region of
poetry, where the emotions have full play and
Faith is vision. Theology becomes the expla-
nation of the fellowship between the soul and
Jesus. Regeneration is the entrance into His
life, Justification the partaking of His Cross,
Sanctification the transformation into His char-
acter, Death the coming of the Lord, Heaven
His unveiled Face. Doctrines will be but


moods of the Christ-consciousness ; parables of
the Christ-life. Suffering will be the baptism of
Jesus and the drinking of His cup, and if every
saint have not the stigmata on his hands and
feet, he will at least, like Simon the Cyrenian,
have the mark of the Cross upon his shoulder.
And service will be the personal tribute to
Jesus, whom we shall recognise under any dis-
guise, as his nurse detected Ulysses by his
wounds, and whose Body, in the poor and
miserable, will ever be with us for our dis-
discernment. Jesus is the leper whom the saint
kissed, and the child the monk carried over the
stream, and the sick man the widow nursed into
health, after the legends of the ages of faith.
And Jesus will say at the close of the day,
* Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the
least of these my brethren, ye have done it
unto me.'

We ought to discern the real strength of
Christianity and revive the ancient passion for
Jesus. It is the distinction of our religion : it
is the guarantee of its triumph. Faith may
languish ; creeds may be changed ; churches
may be dissolved ; society may be shattered.
But one cannot imagine the time whejr^j^us'


will not be the fair image of perfection, or the
circumstances wherein He will not be loved.
He can never be superseded ; He can never be
exceeded. Religions will come and go, the
passing shapes of an eternal instinct, but Jesus
will remain the standard of the conscience and
the satisfaction of the heart, whom all men
seek, in whom all men will yet meet.



Two at least of the chief convictions which
sustain the heart of Humanity rest, in the last
issue jn a basis of pure reason. One is the
belief that the soul is immortal ; the other is
the belief that it will be judged. We repudi-
ate the opposite, because the annihilation of
the spiritual and the confusion of the moral
are unthinkable. ' For my own part,' says Mr.
Fiske, * I believe in the immortality of the
soul, not in the sense in which I accept the
demonstrable truths of science, but as a su-
preme act of faith in the reasonableness of
God's work.' It is incredible that when the
long evolution of nature has come to a head
the flower should be flung away. This were to
reduce design to a fiasco. ' What can be more
in the essential nature of things,' writes Mr.
W. R. Greg, in his Enigmas of Life, a very


honest book, ' than that the mere entrance into
the spiritual state will effect a severance of
souls ? ' It is incredible that the present failure
of justice should end in no redress, and the im-
mense wrongs of this life have no ' complement
of recompense.* This were to turn order to
chaos, and put us all to ' permanent intellec-
tual confusion.* Pessimistic thinkers, whose
reason has been deflected by the presence of
an arrogant materialism, and moral triflers,
whose conscience is satisfied with a deity of
imbecile good-nature — the bon Dieu of the
French — may deny judgment ; the one, be-
cause there is no soul, the other, because there
is no judge. But the masters of thought in all
ages and of all nations have accepted judgment
as an axiom in the calculation of human life ;
they have used it as a factor in the creation of
human history. Reference of every moral ac-
tion to an eternal standard, revisal of every in-
dividual life by a supreme authority, are em-
bedded in the creeds of the Race. The Book
of the Dead was the sacred writing of the old-
est civilisation, and it describes how the soul is
weighed in the intangible scales of righteous-
ness. The Greek moralists conceived the


Furies let loose on the guilty soul, and placed
their abode behind the judgment seat of Areop-
agus. The ' Bible of the Middle Ages' was a
rehearsal of judgment, wherein not only the
saints and sinners of the past, but those of that
very day, received their due recompense of re-
ward. Angelico wrought out his Inferno and
Paradiso in a picture which fails somewhat on
the left hand, where sinners are tormented by
their own sins, because he was ignorant of sin,
but succeeds gloriously on the right, where the
glorified arrive in a flower-garden — which is the
outer court of heaven — for he only of men had
seen the angels. When the ages of faith had
closed and every conviction of the past was
put to the question, one belief still held an iron
grip, and Michael Angelo painted his Judg-
ment in the Pope's Chapel of the Vatican. It
is a picture which confuses and overwhelms
one ; it was an awful agony of Art ; but it was
also an intense reality of the soul.

We have a robust common sense of morality
which refuses to believe that it does not matter
whether a man has lived like the Apostle Paul
or the Emperor Nero. One may hesitate to
speculate about the circumstances of the other


world ; one may love the splendid imagination
of the Apocalypse more than the vulgar real-
ism of modern sentiment, but one can never
crush out the conviction that there must be
one place for St. John, who was Jesus' friend,
and another for Judas Iscariot, who was His
betrayer. It were unreasonable that this mad
confusion of circumstances should continue,
which ties up the saint and the miscreant to-
gether to the misery of both ; it were supreme-
ly reasonable that this tangle be unravelled
and each receive his satisfaction. One has
seen sheep and swine feeding in the same field
till evening, and has followed till the sheep
were gathered into their fold, and the swine
ran greedily to their stye. The last complaint
that would have occurred to one's mind was
that their owners had separated them, the last
suggestion that they should be herded to-
gether. What was fitting had happened ; it
was separation according to type.

Jesus did not supersede this conviction as
the superstition of an imperfect morality, nor
condemn it as a contradiction of the Divine
Love. His ' enthusiasm of Humanity * did not
blind Him to deep lines of moral demarcation;


His 'huge tenderness' did not propose an
equality for Judas and John. He did not
come to reduce the moral order to an anarchy
of grace, and to break the inevitable connec-
tion between sin and punishment. It has been
said by a profound thinker that Antinomian-
ism is the only heresy, and it is desirable to re-
mind one's-self, in a day of flabby sentiment,
that Jesus was not an Antinomian. Had
Jesus condoned sin, then He had been the de-
stroyer of our Race, and not its Saviour, for
the comforting of our heart had been a poor
recompense for the debauchery of our con-
science. But it is a conspicuous instance of
Jesus' balance, that He combined the most
tender compassion for the sinner with the most
unflinching condemnation of sin. It is Jesus
who has compared sin unto Gehenna, ' where
their worm dieth not and the fire is not
quenched' ; who places the rich man of soft
and luxurious life in torment, so that he begs
for a drop of water to cool his tongue ; who
casts the unprofitable servant into outer dark-
ness, where is weeping and gnashing of teeth ;
who declares that the fruitless branches of the
vine will be f^^athered and burned ; who senda


the servants of self into the fire prepared for
the Devil and his angels. Jesus spake in para-
bles, and it were folly to press His words into
a description of circumstances. Jesus spake
also with marked emphasis, and it were dishon-
esty to deny that He believed in the fact of

Jesus went with the general reason of the
Race in affirming the certainty of judgment,
and therein He is at one with the Catholic
creeds of Christendom. Jesus has also gone
with the general reason in affirming the morality
of judgment, and therein He has differed from
that solitary creed which has raised uncharita-
bleness into an article of faith. What has filled
many honourable minds with resentment and
rebellion is not the fact of separation, but the
principle of execution ; not the dislike of an
assortment, but the fear that it will not be into
good and bad. No power will ever convince a
reasonable being that one man should be
elected to life and have heaven settled on him
as an entailed estate, and another be ordained
to death and ' be held in the way thereto' ; or
that one be ' blessed ' because he has held the
orthodox creed, and another be * cursed ' be-


cause he has made a mistake in the most pro-
found of all sciences. If Pleaven and Hell —
be they places or states — are made to hinge on
the arbitrary will of the Almighty, or on the
imperfect processes of human reason, then
judgment will not be a fiasco, it will be an
outrage. It will be a climax of irresponsible
despotism, whose monstrous injustice would
leave Heaven without blessing and Hell with-
out curse.

Reason cannot agree with such a reading of
judgment ; reason cannot disagree with the
reading of Jesus. Jesus never made judgment
depend cither on the will of God or the belief
of man. He rested judgment on the firm foun-
dation of what each man is in the sight of the
Eternal. He anticipated no protest in his par^
ables against the justice of this evidence : none
has ever been made from any quarter. The
wheat is gathered into the garner. What else
could one do with wheat ? The tares are burned
in the fire. What else could one do with tares?
When the net comes to the shore, the good fish
are gathered into vessels ; no one would throw
them away. The bad are cast aside ; no one
would leave them to contaminate the good.


The supercilious guests who did not value the
great supper were left severely alone. If men
do not care for Heaven, they will not be forced
into it. The outcasts, who had never dared to
dream of such a supper, were compelled to
come. If men hunger for the best, the best
shall be theirs. The virgins who had taken the
trouble of bringing oil went in to the marriage ;
they were evidently friends of the bridegroom :
the virgins who had made no preparation were
shut out from the marriage ; they were mere
strangers. Had the foolish virgins been re-
jected because they were a few minutes late,
they would have had just cause of complaint.
When the bridegroom declined their company
for the simple reason that he did not know
them, they had no answer. It would be
equally out of place either for friends to be re-
fused, or strangers to force admission to a mar-
riage. It is all fair and fitting — exactly as
things ought to be : Jesus* judgment is the very
apotheosis of reason.

Twice has the Judgment been described with
authority — once by the greatest prophet that
has spoken outside the Hebrew succession,
once by the chief prophet of Jew and Gentile.


Plato has told us that the judges of the great
assizes will sit at a place on the other side,
where all roads from this world meet, and
where, divided by the throne of justice, they
part again into two — the way which leadeth to
the Islands of the Blessed, and the way that
goeth to the ' House of Vengeance and Punish-
ment, which is called Tartarus.' Men are not
to appear before the judges in the body, lest
justice should be partial, since there are many
' having evil souls who are apparelled in fair
bodies*: neither are the judges to be clothed,
lest their bodies be * interposed as a veil before
their own souls.* The judgment is to be abso-
lutely real ; each judge ' with his naked soul
shall pierce into the other naked soul,' and eacTi
soul will go to its own place. Just as bodies
have a shape of their own, so is it with souls.
Some are scarred by crimes, some are crooked
with falsehood, some deformed by inconti-
nence ; these are despatched to Tartarus.
Other souls show the fair proportions of holi-
ness and truth, and on them the judges look
with admiration as they go to the Islands of the
Blessed. Nothing is arbitrary ; everything is
reasonable. It is registration rather than ex-


amination ; it is fulfilment rather than judg-

The Judgment of Plato is one of the supreme
efforts of human reason, surely not unillumi-
nated by the Spirit of God ; and one compares
it with the Judgment of Jesus to find a consid-
erable difference in drapery, and an exact cor-
respondence in principle. According to Jesus,
there will be a Judgment on the confines of
the ' Unseen Universe,' and each soul will ap-
pear before Him seated on the Throne of His
glory. There will be instant division, but no
confusion : it will be manifestation and con-
firmation. The sheep and the goats, which
have been one flock in the pastures of this life,
will fall apart, each breed according to its
nature. Those who have lived the selfless life,
who saw Him an hungered and gave Him meat,
fulfilling the Law of Love, shall stand on one
side, because by their choice they are of one
kind ; and those who have loved the self life,
who saw Him a stranger and took Him not in,
disobeying the Law of Love, shall stand on the
other side, because by their choice they are of
another kind. ' Come, ye blessed * is said to
the selfless, because by the constitution of the


moral universe they cannot be anything else
than blessed. 'Depart, ye cursed' is said to
the selfish because even God Himself could not
prevent them being cursed. Their state in
neither case is ' prepared,' but is the inheritance
of character. It is a recognition of fitness, as
reasonable as an arrangement into species, as
natural as the ripening of harvest.

Jesus makes a marked advance on Plato by
magnifying the function of the Judge, and an-
ticipating the date of the Judgment. The
Judge in St. Matthew's Gospel is not an official
referring to a Law : He is identical with the
Law itself. Each soul is tried not by its obedi-
ence to a written standard, but by its relation
to a living Person. Jesus' ' Come ' is the sym-
bol of a Law, the Law of attraction. His
* Depart ' is the symbol of another Law, the
Law of repulsion, and Jesus Himself is in both
events the magnetic force. The personal fac-
tor, which is the heart of the religion of Jesus,
asserts itself in the Judgment. Jesus monopo-
lises the outlook of life : He is the wounded
Man the priest passes, whom the Samaritan
helps. His acceptance or rejection is the test
of the soul, and the crisis simply culminates at


the Judgment. Human life will then finally
break against Jesus as a rock in the midst of a
stream, each current to follow its own direction
unfettered and unmingled. The presence of
Jesus is our Judgment.

We are accustomed to refer Judgment to the
threshold of the other world. We ought to
acclimatise the idea in this world, for if Jesus
once enlarged on the august circumstances of

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