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energies in the self-pleasing intoxication of emotional fervors, or it may focus
itself upon a pious selfishness which renders the commandment — ^''Thou shalt
love thyself with all thy heart, and God and thy neighbor not at alL" A
degenerate religious nature lets loose upon many a human life the dogs of
animalism; vice and degradation resulting with lamentable frequency. No
age in the world; no stage of htunan progress can dispense with moral and
religious education without certain disaster to individual and social welfeire.

Nor can this work be wholly relegated to the church. The church can do
and does do much, but its teachings are of necessity confined to religious lines.



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The Christian Student 73

The church as such does not propose to unite scholarship with moral and
religious instruction^ and it is this blending of intellectual and moral culture
which is most essential. Ignorant religion and irreligious learning are both
abnormal; both suffer all the disadvantages of the unnatural divorce. The
denominational college proposes, not only to bring religion in touch with higher
learning; but to bring that learning also in touch with religion. The church
teaches one day in a week, the college five, and it is well known that large
numbers of young men and women do not avail themselves of the religious
culture which the church offers, and it is also true that many homes are anything
but centers of moral and religious training. The denominational college proposes
to give to the college and university the inspiration of the religious spirit, and
at the same time give to moral and religious instruction the potent forces
of higher education. When therefore the denominational college stands for the
union of higher education with moral and religious culture, it stands for
symmetrical education; it stands for the highest and broadest education.

The objective point in education is not the mere acquisition of knowledge;
it is rather knowledge and power put to the best possible uses. Herbert Spencer
has well said that, '"to prepare us for complete living is the function which educa-
tion is called upon to discharge." Still better Professor John Dewey defines
education as "the process of right living; not a preparation for future living.**
It is certain that education cannot consistently aim at ansrthing less than the
highest destiny of which man is capable, and every man who thinks of life in
ethical terms, must logically insist that education shall be similarly conceived.
The religious education for which the denominational college contends does
not consist in the introduction of some religious lessons into a curriculum, nor
is it the maintenance of a religious department to stand over against non-
religious sections; it is rather the lifting of the whole educational life to a
moral and religious plane. It claims that ''God is included in complete society,"
that man, nature, and God constitute a unified basis for the highest education;
that in tracing the evolution of man, religion is a chief line of ascent with
Christianity as the highest point of development

It should be noted also that the denominational college is essential to the
proper development of church life itself. Ecclesiastical bodies are conservative.
The conscientiousness of Christian people, and the sacredness of the subjects
involved, beget extreme caution in the presence of proposed change. There is
a tendency in church life toward fixedness of tsrpe, and conventional standards
of excellence. Modes and interpretations may come to be regarded as of equal
importance with the truth itself. If we rightly read the day, one of the short-
comings of the church just now consists in a well-meant but mistaken effort to
force the larger Ufe of the present generation into the forms of expression
which, though natural to a former period, are artificial and largely without
meaning in our own. The remedy is not in severing religion from progressive
thinking, but in bringing both into closest fellowship. Not learning under guard
in the school room, and religion out on church parole, but learning in contact
with all-around life; learning which skips no truth because its genus is religious,
and which shuns no question which man has need to ask. Every man, if he
only knew it, has a religious philosophy; he who disclaims and denounces
it not less than others. It is undoubtedly of great importance to this generation
that religion should be philosophical, but it is equally important that philosophy
should be religious. Things in themselves are of far less importance than their
meanings. The material universe is of small value compared with the spiritual



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74 The Christian Student

significance which is implicit in it. The deepest secrets of nature point to God
as rays of light announce the sun, and to unite fundamental religious truth
with truth equally fundamental in science and philosophy provides for a harmony
which is both natural and divine. This is the education for which the denomi-
national college stands. It would offer this education to young men and women
in those critical years during which their traditional beliefs become the subjects
of personal investigation. To be shown at such a period that all truth is one,
whether labeled scientific, philosophical, or religious; and that all truth is
divine, whether received through intuition, reasoning, or revelation, may easily
prove to them a healthful balance of intellectual and moral life. The church
and the world need young life thus educated— young life which wiU never be
troubled with conflicts between science and religion, life which never looks
upon science as occupying exclusively the domain of fact, while religion is rele-
gated to the realm of uncertainty, and which will never punctuate a superficial
scepticism with the silly assumption that, the less religion the more scholarship.

And I may also add that state institutions themselves need the influence of
denominational colleges. They are benefited by the pressure of religious senti-
ment connected with education, which these colleges markedly help to create.
They are benefited by the standards of moral conduct to which students are for
the most part held. The danger of one-sidedness in education, of which we some-
times hear, is not wholly with the denominational college. This danger may,
to say the least, as easily arise by eliminating religious culture, as by emphasizing
it It would be difficult to ^y to what a degree of backsliding state institutions
might drift, or to what an extent the refining and elevating influences of
religion might be ignored, were it not for the insistence with which denomina-
tional institutions appeal to moral and religious considerations. All state
institutions have the best of reasons for wishing denominational colleges the
widest influence and the highest degree of success.

If this is the work to be done, it can hardly be denied that the denominational
college is favorably conditioned for its accomplishment It is under no con-
straint from the church or restraint from the state. It neither impinges upon
politics nor antagonizes creeds. It is under no necessity of attempting the
impossibility of a non-religious attitude, nor is it obliged to part with its liberty
at the behest of stereotyped tradition. Its field is wide; its hands are free to
touch human welfare at every point It has never any occasion to lower its
educational standards in order to make room for its moral and religious instruc-
tion; it has only to broaden its culture, and intone its life with the religious
spirit

T^is being the purpose and work of the denominational college, we may
claim for it, (i) That it is the historic and typical American college; (2) that
its usefulness, so marked in the past, still continues, and favorably compares
with that of any other class of institutions for higher education; (3) that it is
a necessity to the best interests of education generally, and to the widest influ-
ence of our churches ; (4) that a small measure of prophetic insight will enable
us to predict that denominational colleges wi^l, during the twentieth century,
occupy wider fields, and exert more extended influence than during any period
in the past And while they will doubtless maintain their essential features as
denominational institutions, they will adjust themselves to changing conditions,
extending fraternal hands to all workers in this great field, inscribing upon their
banners — ^"In essentia unitas, in non-essentia libertas. In omnibus caritas."



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The Christian Student IS

The CoUes^e a Cooperative Institution

(Extracts from the inaugural address of President Walter D. Agnew,
Missouri Wesleyan College, Cameron, Missouri, delivered at the college on
Wednesday, June 6, 1906:)

'There is on a large pillar at the east gate of Harvard University the follow-
ing inscription: 'After God had carried us safe to New England, and we had
builded our houses, provided necessaries for our livelihood, reared convenient
places for God's worship, and settled our civil government, one of the next
things we longed for and looked after was to advance learning and perpetuate
it to posterity; dreading to leave an illiterate ministry to the churches when our
present ministers shall lie in the dust'

"That describes the narrow limits of Harvard courses of study in the early
days. It was founded for the education of the ministry. Its students, like
those of all institutions of the time, were limited principally to the study of
mathematics, the Bible, and the humanities. What a change has come since
those early days! Now a college course includes all that goes to offer a liberal
education. There have been added extensive courses in history, economics,
philosophy, and natural science. Courses in the arts and in manual training are
also considered in place in a modem college curriculum. Such variety of
courses brings the student in touch with almost every phase of domestic, religious,
industrial, and political life.

i» 4t 4t 4t 4t i» 4t

"It has come to be a truism that the Christian college is adapted to produce
the well-rounded, symmetrically developed individual. If the student is inclined
to live the life of a hermit, the college imposes social obligations upon him that
this native disposition may be overcome. If he is a scoffer at religion, the college
will teach him that religion has played a most prominent part in every civiliza-
tion, whether pagan or Christian. If he has little appreciation for our great
free institutions, the college will teach him that they have been bought at a
great price, and preserved at the cost of our fathers' blood. The college will
round him out into a typical American citizen, who belongs to the aristocracy of
a liberal culture.

"Thus in this rounding-out process the college has come to be a great
cooperative institution, working with every other institution fundamental to
society, for the development of the individual and for the onward and upward
progress of humanity. There are many such institutions, and the college cooper-
ates with them all. For its chief aim is not to promote scholarship, as some
might define it, but rather to train men, which is by far the higher motive.
It is only occasionally that one who masters the college course gives himself
to the promotion of scholarship. But everywhere, in every walk of life, are
to be found those who are prominent and useful in society because of what the
college has done for them. The great aim of the college, then, is to prepare
the youth to bear nobly and successfully the great responsibilities of life.

4t 4t 4t « 4t 41 «

'Tt is in the carrying out of this great purpose that the college cooperates
with the Christian home. Every writer or thinker along the lines of social
science regards the home as resting at the basis of all society. We can have no
high civilization without it. ... O, I know that no one can take the place of
mother! She will follow her boy to prison and the gallows, standing by him



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76 The Christian Student

though all the worid forsake. It was the mother of Jesus who, weeping,
followed him to Calvary. Thomas Carlyle voiced the sentiment of the worthy
child when in his old age he cried: 'O pious mother I kind, good, brave, and
truthful soul as I have ever found, and more than I have ever elsewhere found
in this world, yotu" poor Tom, long out of his school-days now, has fallen very
lonely, very lame and broken, in this pilgrimage of his; and you cannot help
him or cheer hun by a kind word any more. (But) from your grave in
Ecclefechan kirkyard jronder you bid him trust in God, and that also he will
try if he can understand and do.' This is the power of the mother over the
child grown old. And it is the ideal for the college in its attitude toward the
student

This attitude is one of implicit confidence in the child. The boys at Rugby
used to say, 'We must do the right thing, for Arnold believes in us.' And Tom
Brown and his friend East were transformed from worthless, idle boys, whose
chief employment was the instigation of some new prank, into a high type of
noble manhood because Arnold believed in them. Discipline was not neglected.
Time after time were they flogged for such tricks as wading the river to fish
on the forbidden side or for writing their names on the hands of the big dock.
But the day came when all the dormant manhood that lay in their boyish hearts
clamored for expression because they did not want to disappoint Arnold.

m * m m * * m

'T/>ng years after, what intense grief when Arnold died! Tom was out of
school With some friends he was on a fishing excursion. When one read from
a paper that Arnold was dead, a heavy weight rested on the heart of Tom. His
pleasure was gone. Overcome with grief, he made his way to Oxford and to
Rugby. Finding the keeper of the chapel, he took the key, and went silently and
reverently to the place where they had laid the dead. Was Arnold gone? The
world seemed suddenly to have changed. And there, alone with his thoughts,
he poured out his grief in a flood of tears.

"Another institution, fundamental to society, with which the college cooper-
ates, is the Christian church.

"Both seek to develop the immature into a high tjrpe of Christian manhood
and womanhood, and to maintain such an atmosphere in society as will contribute
to high ideals in thought and to noble deeds in conduct Out from the Christian
college into the active work of the church go the young men and women who
have the vision of the church's great endeavor. They have caught step with its
onward progress, and are carrying out the sublime idea of Christian stewardship.

"The church is seeking to promote a widespread knowledge of the Holy
Scriptures. But in this it must ^1 unless aided by the college.

"We have been engaged in recent years in studying about the Bible, to the
neglect of the Bible itsell It is important to know whether Moses wrote the
five books attributed to him, but it is more important to know something of the
contents of the five books. It is important to learn if possible whether the
story of Jonah is a fact or fiction, but it is more important that one be familiar
with the story itself.

"All honor to the men who in these last days have been subjecting the
Bible to the severest tests of literary and historical criticism I Let us have no
83rmpathy with those who cry heresy at the sound of every opinion which departs
from the traditions of the past A broader and deeper foundation for our faith
in the Holy Scripture is being laid. When this Book of books emerges from



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The Christian Student 77

the storm of controyersy through which it has been passing for the last quarter
of a century, it will be a new book, and a new revelation to the worliL We do
not wish to be understood as oi>p08ing in any sense this study about the Bible.
We only say that over against this there is to be a reaction, and in this reaction
the college should play an important part Let the Christian college make this
great library of ancient literature, with its parables and its proverbs, with its
story and its song, with its precept and its po^ry, so attractive that it shall be
an open book instead of a closed and dust-covered manuscript

"Again, the college is efficient in its cooperation with the state. The men
who have been our leaders from the very beginning have been college men. It
it said that, except for the influence of Harvard College in the affairs of New
England statesmanship, the American Revolution would have been delayed by
half a century.

''Of the fifty-six signers of the Declaration of Independence, forty-two had
a liberal education. Three members of the five appointed to draft the Declara-
tion, Jefferson, Adams, and Livingstone, were college-bred; thirty-five of the
fifty-five composing the convention of 1787, which framed the Constitution^ had
the advantage of a classical education. The men most active for its adoption
were tcained at college. Of our Presidents, seventeen were college graduates;
and of our Vice-Presidents, fifteen have graduated from higher institutions of
learning.

"But more than all this, it is highly significant that most of the leaders
in every great modem industrial enterprise are college men. Manual training
is playing an important part in our great system of public education. From
kindergarten to college the boys are being trained to work with their hands.
The time is not far distant when at least no preparatory school will be accounted
complete in its equipment without this provision for manual training.

'The college cooperates with the state by infusing into its student body a
noble and intelligent patriotism. The college has not interpreted the word
'country* as meaning so many square miles, but rather that it means justice for
all; help for the weak; sympathy for the oppressed. The college seeks that
toleration of opinions might become common among all men. Its great aim
is to uphold the ideas of simple democracy."



The Science of ReUgion — ^Its Value
By Rev. George Heber Jones^ D.D.

[In The Christian Student for February, 1905, there was published, by
special request, a postgraduate course of study for ministers. Following its
publication, there were a number of requests that there might be added a course
on comparative religions. Shortly thereafter the editor of The Christian
Student became acquainted with the Rev. Dr. George Heber Jones, of Korea,
and, learning of his great interest in and careful study of the subject, requested
him to contribute an article, and to accompany it with an outline course of
reading. The same follow herewith. Many readers of The Christian
Student will be deeply interested.— EdtVor.]

The nineteenth century has brought about a remarkable extension in the
knowledge of man. Hitherto unexplored fields have been opened up, and
unexpected sources of knowledge discovered. The list of sciences has become so
extended that it is now impossible for one man to master them all, while the old



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78 The Christian Student

sciences have been so broadened and deepened that it is possible to specialize
and become a master scholar in any one of them. Among the most interesting
and remarkable of these new sciences is the Science of Religion whidi dates
from quite recent times. As it is understood to-day, it is separate and distinct
from theology, which is restricted to the teachings of Christianity, and deals
with the ultimate and perfected forms of the final religion of the human family, .
while the Science of Religion deals with the religious phenomena of man, as
manifested in all nations throughout the history of the human race.

The late appearance of this new science is but a tardy recognition of the
fact that the vast amount of phenomena attending the religious life of man,
outside the Christian pale, is capable of investigation and classification. Until
quite recent times, this great field was regarded among Christian scholars as
a forbidden land in which one ought not, or need not to venture. The feeling
seems to have prevailed that to recognize the non-Christian faiths of man, as
containing anything worthy of investigation, was a kind of treason to our higher
faith. For many years Christian scholarship was under the sway of the spirit
manifested by the old Roman Catholic propagandists, and expressed so impres-
sively by Milton, who regarded all the life of man outside the Christian faith
as diabolical in its origin and tendencies. To Milton the gods worshiped by the
heathen peoples were those princely dignitaries who once lived and reigned in
Heaven's high plain, but through foul rebellion fell from their beatific state and
caused all memorial of them to be blotted from heaven's muster roll. The
very names by which a heathen man calls his gods are but aliases by which
these gods have deceived the sons of Adam,

"wandering o'er the earth.
Through God's high sufferance for the trial of man
By falsities and lies the greatest part
Of mankind,' they corrupted, to forsake
God, their creator and the invisible
Glory of him that made them, to transform
Oft to the ima^e of a brute, adorned
With gay religions full of pomp and gold
And devils to adore for deities.
Then were they known to men by various names
The various idols through the Heathen World."

Whether this conception of Milton's be regarded as inspired or uninspired, it has
been the expression of an attitude toward the man of the Heathen World,
which looked upon his religious life as unworthy of serious thought The last
quarter of the nineteenth century saw. this attitude very materially altered

In approaching the study of the religious conditions prevailing in the heathen
world, a fundamental distinction to be borne in mind constantly is that which
exists between the religious life of the people and the theoretical expression of
that life in the various cults of faith. The life of the people in its religious
manifestations, is not confined to any one or all of the cults they follow, but is
immeasurably broader than they. Take in illustration, Confucianism, the best
of the ethnic faiths ; it fails to touch large areas of Chinese religious life, while
on the other hand, some of its tenets are a dead letter among Confucian peoples.
The Science of Religion recognizes this distinction, and does large service in
proposing to investigate, collate, and organize not any one system of religion in
particular, but the whole range of religious phenomena in the life of man.

It is into this world, with its underbrush of primitive and savage beliefs.



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The Christian Student 79

and its stunted growths of ethnic faiths, that the wide activities and yenturesome
spirit of modern scholarship has pressed its way. It is recognized to-day, that
Christianity has nothing to fear from this full recognition of the past religious
life of man, while our personal apprehension of the truths of Christianity may
be greatly enlightened and strengthened by what we can learn from that other
religious world beyond the pale of Christian light However bad may be the
spiritual condition, man has baen dealing perpetually and universally with a
religious nature, with which God originally endowed him. Devoid of the noon-
day glories of the Christian revelation, he has gathered his religious lore and
experience into various cults of religion which we for convenience will call
ethnic faiths, and while much is imperfect, temporary, and false, yet hidden
away in the great ethnic faiths of men are religious illustrations, correspondencies
and analogies which can all be made contributory to the clear apprehension of the
value and truth of Christianity. Many remarkable though indirect testimonies
to the universal blessedness and value of Christianity await our discovery there.
The heathen world must go through the same process as did our ancestors, and
its people, in accepting Christianity, must pass it through their own hearts and
lives, and make it apply to their peculiar conditions. Bom and educated under
different influences from those which prevail among us, and influenced by
different philosophies from those which we hold, heathen people will approach
Christianity from a different angle of vision from that which we occupy. Their
natures, when touched by the spirit of God, will break forth into spiritual har-
monies which will add many sweet notes to the universal religious refrain that



Online LibraryMethodist Episcopal Church. Board of EducationThe Christian student → online text (page 34 of 41)