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explaining that affirmation on its own grounds. But so long as the Christian consciousness shall assert that the explanation is no explanation, it forces sensationalism through its own circuit around again to simple denial. Sensationalism can never get away from this. On the other hand Christianity may be able to show reason why sensationalism cannot affirm its truths. An affirmation and a denial state then the scientific status of the controversy.
We may look a little more closely at this doctrine of sensationalism in its branches, and in comparison with Christianity. Sensationalism as a whole invariably starts out with the proposition that in the last analysis the only means of knowledge are the five senses and the muscular sensibilities, and always finds as much knowledge as on this proposition it could be expected to find. One branch, under a gross realism of sense, and the absence of all spiritual consciousness, runs out into bald materialism, holding that matter is the one ultimate entity, and that what we are pleased to call mind is but a form of matter resolvable again into the round of material growth and decay. Another branch, compelled to recognize on the ground of sense itself that a sensation is a consciousness, runs out into sensational idealism, and finding no consciousness save the consciousness which is a sensation resolves matter into an active sense; consciousness and mind into a passive sense; consciousness, and the whole world, matter and spirit, into a grand panorama of insubstantial ghosts and fleeting phantoms. The remaining branch is the branch of nescience, and does not essentially differ from sensational idealism save in the point that there is an "indefinite consciousness" of somewhat which passes the pageant of matter and spirit to and fro before our eyes, but a somewhat which this "indefinite consciousness" leaves an unsolved mystery.
Thus sensationalism reaps its own legitimate fruits. What wonder that sense does not perceive what is not perceivable by sense! What wonder that morality should be resolved into pleasing sensations! What wonder that spirituality should be looked upon as an abnormal nervous action, or a blind indefi
nite consciousness! What wonder that Bentham could say without a blush of shame that "quantity of pleasure being equal pushpin is as good as poetry"! What wonder that the spirit should reach out to fruits beyond the fruits of sense, and that the efforts to label them as genuine should not avail! What wonder that John Stuart Mill should be saved from the despair of youth by reading the inspiring lines of Wordsworth, and that he should in vain struggle for the utilitarian standard of morals among the different kinds of pleasure marked as high and low! What wonder that when men seek for motive in life they read the Bible and Emerson! What wonder that Prof. Tyndall exclaims that in his best moments he is no sensationalist! Christianity accepts all the truth that sensationalism has to give, and enwrapping this little truth in its own glorious truth, says "I understand you." And building upon the clear, definite perception of a supersensuous world, adds, in meekness, "I am a wisdom and a truth, and my very alphabet you have forgotten to learn.”
Although in the abstract the scientific status favors Christianity, Christianity still setting forth its positive doctrine in opposition to the most studied denials, men rightfully are not content with contemplating the abstract logic of the problem, but, not forgetting that the intelligent affirmation is scientific, themselves seek grounds of affirmation or denial. And to each man in his search the scientific value of Christianity will bear its special phase according to the way in which he has lived. "If any man will do God's will," said Christ, "he shall know of the doctrine." "He that hat!: my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me; and I will manifest myself to him." "The pure in heart shall see God." For Christianity is not only nor principally a doctrine, it is a life. True it is to be studied; much more it is to be lived. It has truth for the intellect, but such truth as shapes commands for the will, and presents objects for the affections. And in its complex appeal to the varied faculties of men, and its adaptation to secure their expansion and perfection in the high unity, a perfect life, it bears the stamp, as against mere intellectualism, of its own complex unity and completeness.
Thus it abounds in precepts, precepts which have commanded the admiration of men, and to which they have been constrained to come for instruction,- such precepts as after the lapse of nearly twenty centuries men's ideals even have not reached beyond; but which are still the potent aids to higher moral endeavor both in ideals and in acts. And these precepts of Christianity reiterated and impressed upon us not only vividly remind us that we are beings of action as well as of thought, but perchance arousing the moral sense call us to the high fact that to act righteously is not less obligatory upon us than to think sincerely, and to the importance from earliest years of righteously training the will, no less than of intellectual training.
And Christianity re-enforces its precepts by the Divine Life. It rises far above man. It rests in no abstractions. Its standard of morals admits on the one hand of no resolution into human qualities or attainments, nor on the other of attenuation into imaginative existences. It has to do with verities in God. The rule of mercy it enforces by the mercy of our heavenly Father, and in general perfection by his perfection. It is the transcendent rule of conduct falling upon the human soul a benediction from heaven. It is the supreme system of ethics rising above all human failures to God's excellence.
Its ethical standard being God, the supreme reality and source of the universe, the cords of obligation, binding the soul endowed with moral capacities and powers to him, it will not suffer to be loosed. Duties are seen to be fundamental. And the eminent place among the faculties which conscience asserts for itself, Christianity abundantly confirms and emphasizes.
And Christianity leading us to God the Father calls forth the noblest affections, and loftiest aspirations, and purest faith of the soul. It is food to human capacities; it is realization to human aspiration; more, it is the largess of being which affection does not exhaust, nor faith fathom. It endues us with the sense of God's bounty. It leads human life to God's
fulness, and out of his fulness it ennobles and enriches human life.
Nor does it lead men to the invisible God by a too difficult path. If native aspiration is burdened by the cares that lie on our way, or is hampered by our zeal that has learned to cleave to the earth, if the faculties are weak to discern him whom eye has not seen nor ear heard, if nature has no eloquence, and reason gives forth but an uncertain sound, still we are not left desolate that we cannot respond to the wisdom of God manifest in the flesh. For Christianity beyond all cavil began as a life. It "first practised its words, then spoke them." Its doctrine but reflects Christ's personality. Christ is life. Does he speak of his Father in heaven?he communes with him. Does he speak of the love of man? - he exemplifies that love. Does he speak of righteousness?- he is righteous; of mercy? - he is merciful; of purity of heart?he is pure in heart; of forgiveness? he is forgiving; of sacrifice?- he gives himself a sacrifice. Everywhere he meets the test of the high truth that he teaches, and gives the world himself more than words, more than thoughts, a mighty fact.
The life of God in Christ is the life of men. It comes down from God. Yet for man it is but normal growth. It is but destiny. It is but the fulness of affection, the righteousness of will, the ripeness of intellect. It is but living. It is but being before philosophizing, but following the leadings of the Spirit where truth is known as well as sought after, where life is truth.
In brief then, Christianity as related to the intellect is truth,— but truth which imparts the sense of reserves of truth; as related to the whole man it is life, but life which imparts the sense of reserves of life: and it is out of its life that it formulates and substantiates its truth.
The Hebrew Language — its Spirit and Characteristics.
The grass will wither,
Die hebräische Sprache ist voll Athems der Seele, sie tönt nicht, wie die griechische, aber sie haucht, sie lebt.- Herder.
I. The Hebrew language is prehistoric. It was the language of Canaan before Abraham entered that country. Its name Ebrew or Hebrew leads us back to ten generations before Abraham, to Eber the grandson of Shem, who, it would seem, was the ancestor of the Ebrews.
Shem is said to have been the father of all the children of Eber. Why should he have been the father of Eber's children, more than of Elam's children, of Asshur's, of Arphaxad's of Lud's, and of Aram's? But the word son (bén) is used of descendants, as "the sons of Israel," i. e. the Israelites; "the sons of Ammon," i. e. the Ammonites. In the same sense it is used here: he was the father (ancestor) of all the children of Eber, i. e. of all the Ebrites (Hebrews). It is very probable that this language, whatever might have been its origin, was handed down to Abraham's time through Shem and Eber.
Another way, and a very popular one, of explaining this name is to derive it from the verb abhar, meaning, to pass over. According to this, Abraham was called the Ebrite, the Hebrew, because he passed (abhar) the river Euphratus, or he passed from one place to another - he travelled. And again there are some, who with Augusti, attach to abhar the idea of dying (passing away). According to this explanation, the "Hebrew language" would mean, the dead language, in contradistinction to the Aramaic, which was the living language. The first derivation from Ebher, however, is probably the true one, because it is the least forced.
II. In Genesis, the oldest book in the Bible, we find various traces of a pre-Mosaic literature; namely the most diversified development—the formation, the variety, as well as the precise use of words—and especially the constant use