REVELATIONS OF THE WAR
EIGHT SERMONS by T.T. SHIELDS
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T. T. SHIELDS
REVELATIONS OF THE WAR
T. T. SHIELDS
Preached on successive Sunday Evenings,
January 27th to March 7th, 1915, in Jarvis Street
Baptist Church, Toronto, Canada.
THE STANDARD PUBLISHING CO.
223 Church Street.
Of the events of Israel's journey from Egypt to the Prom-
ised Land, the pen of Inspiration says, "Now all these things
happened unto them for types: and they are written for our
admonition upon whom the ends of the ages are come." Truth
is revealed, therefore, not only in the inspired record of Israel's
history, but also in the providential ordering of the events
recorded. The Spirit of God superintended the making of
history, as well as the writing of it. And He who is the sum
of all divine revelations of truth joined Prophecy and History
in an indissoluble alliance for the revelation, confirmation, and
defense of the truth, when He said, "From henceforth I tell
you before it come to pass, that when it is come to pass, ye
may believe that I am."
It follows, therefore, that the genuineness of the Christian
Revelation is to be tested and proved, not in the realm of
abstract reason, but in the crucible of experience. Prophecy
is not designed to forestall the future, to gratify curiosity, and
make one wise beyond his fellows: but is given as a ground
for faith to stand on during the experience of its fulfilment.
Prophecy proves its divine authorship as it passes into history;
and history, when read in the light of inspiration, unfailingly
ministers confirmation to faith. Thus the obedient soul, by
the door of practice, enters joyously and with unveiled face
into the deepest mysteries of grace, while the carnal mind
wearies itself to find the door.
The foregoing is written in the hope of leading the reader
to the author's viewpoint. "It is time for thee, Lord, to work:
for they have made void Thy law." The principles of the
Gospel are being proved by experiences of blood; and through
our tears we are coming to see the truth more clearly.
It is not expected that these sermons will obtain a very
wide circulation. They are published chiefly for the profit of
those who heard them delivered, many of whom have repeat-
edly requested that they be printed to afford them an oppor-
tunity of further meditation upon the doctrines here set
forth. And in this connection, the author would express
his gratification that so many of these requests have come from
the young people of his congregation, showing that the rising
generation is not without a taste for what he, at least, believes
to be "sound doctrine."
It will be seen that these addresses can lay no claim to
literary excellence. They are the average, and often hurried,
work of an average busy pastor, and they are printed without
rewriting, but just as they were delivered. If their publication
should serve, as it has been said their delivery served, to
strengthen the faith of the children of God, and to steady the
minds of some who may be perplexed by the seeming confusion
of these tragic days, the author will ascribe the praise to Him
Whom he has sought through these sermons to honor.
T. T. SHIELDS.
Jarvis Street Baptist Church,
I. THE WAR AND HUMAN NATURE …………… 9
Is Evil Inherent in Human Nature?
Sunday Evening, January 17th.
II. "CULTURE" AND EVOLUTION .................…... 19
How is the Theory of Evolution Affected by the War?
Sunday Evening, January 24th.
III. THE VIRTUE OF HATRED. .................…..….… 31
Ought Ye to Learn How to Hate?
Sunday Evening, January 31st.
IV. BELGIUM AND EXPIATION ...............……....... 41
Is the Law of "An Eye for an Eye" Obsolete?
Sunday Evening, February 7th.
V. GERMANY AND FUTURE PUNISHMENT ......... 51
Do Some Crimes Deserve Hell?
Sunday Evening, February 14th.
VI. THE KAIBER AND BEELZEBUB .............…….... 61
Does this World-Conflict Reveal the Hand of a
Sunday Evening, February 21st.
VII. THE WAR AND DIVINE SOVEREIGNTY ............. 75
What has God to do with the War?
Sunday Evening, February 28th.
VIII. THE BIBLE AND THE WAR .................………...... 9l
Is the Bible Contradicted by the War?
Sunday Evening, March 7th.
"God is at hand, and the Most High rules in
the children of man. ... The same light which
lets you see sin and transgression; will let you see
the covenant of God, which blots out your sin and
transgression, which gives victory and dominion over
it, and brings into covenant with God. For looking
down at sin and corruption and distraction, ye are
swallowed up in it; but looking at the light, which
discovers them, ye will see over them."
GEORGE FOX, to Lady Claypole.
THE WAR AND HUMAN NATURE.
"For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded
is life and peace.
"Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not
subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be."—Romans 8:6, 7.
Before the war it was popularly believed that the human
nature of to-day was superior to the human nature of ancient
times, whose licentious, predatory, and bloody, exploits, so
wofully exemplified the word of Scripture, "Sin hath reigned
unto death." It was generally supposed that in the develop-
ment of human society, by the progress of knowledge, the
spread of education, the enlightenment of travel, the contact
of commerce, and by all the other refinements of civilization
—in which some would include the influence of religion—it
was supposed that by these means human nature had been
shorn of some of its grosser characteristics. And in conson-
ance with this view it was held by many, that the blood-
written history of the past could never be repeated; that, alike,
the intelligence and the conscience of civilization would, in
the future, forbid war on any large scale. And I readily
admit, that this view, although I was never able to agree with
it, did some honor to those who entertained it: notwithstand-
ing, I think it must be said, that it is a sentiment more credit-
able to the emotions than to the intellect.
This complimentary estimate of average human nature
was in disagreement with the theology of a past generation;
10 Revelations of The War
and that in itself was supposed to be a sign of further pro-
gress. Theology used to talk of "natural depravity" of vary-
ing degrees, with a very general tendency to believe that it
It will be admitted by all that the subject before us is
one of great importance to Christian theology; and to
Christian knowledge and experience in general. The nature
and scope of salvation can never be appreciated while the
moral condition from which it is designed to deliver is mis-
apprehended. And human nature must express itself in a
large way before any general conclusion can be drawn. To
many minds the deductions of criminologists, for instance, will
be regarded as inconclusive evidence of general depravity.
They deal with those of an abnormal moral state; and no one
will question that men can be found who seem to be utterly
depraved. But that proves nothing with respect to the moral
natures of normal men and women, except that some people
are very much worse than others.
Put what has the Scripture to say on this subject? And
where may we see the truth of its teaching proved in human
Our text tells us that human nature is essentially a lawless
thing, that it is a law unto itself; that in its very warp and
woof it is enmity against God and His law. It is implied that
its affections, and desires, and ambitions, are all contrary to
every law of righteousness: "It is not subject to the law of
God, neither indeed can be." And this principle of moral
Kaiserism, which inheres in every human soul, leads to suicide:
in its mad insistence upon its own sovereignty, it attempts the
impossible, it runs upon the thick bosses of the bucklers of the
Almighty: "To be carnally minded is death, because the
carnal mind is enmity against God."
And here I must remind you that the spirit of lawlessness
resident in human nature is under divine restraint; but that
The War and Human Nature 11
a time shall come when that restraint shall be withdrawn; and
then this lawlessness shall he revealed—shall become incarnated
in a human personality: as righteousness was incarnate in
Christ, so evil shall be incarnate in Antichrist. But, even now,
wherever that divine restraint, exercised through the direct
and indirect influences of a spiritual religion, is providentially
permitted to be lessened, the inherent lawlessness of human
nature is correspondingly manifested.
And there is still another principle enunciated in Scripture,
and which is necessary to the understanding of our subject,
which we must consider. The Apostle Paul teaches that the
events of Israel's history were providentially ordered with the
design of teaching succeeding ages: "These things happened
unto them by way of example; and they were written for our
admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages are come." The
principle involved in that Scripture is, that all history is an
object lesson set before the world by the Supreme Teacher.
And I am convinced that whoever will look deeply into the
events of the day will find a most illuminating commentary
on the truths which are written in this Book. We have in the
present war, on a stupendous scale, a clinic in unregeneracy.
What answer do your newspapers, so full of stories of
destruction and death, make to the assumption that human
nature has changed for the better? What confirmation of the
melancholy truth of the text is afforded by the bloody fields
of Flanders, of Poland, Galicia, and Serbia?
I. Let us see WHAT CIVILIZATION HAS DONE FOR HUMAN
It would be considered scarcely a fair test to submit this
text for proof to some phase of Central African or South Sea
Island life. The veriest sceptic would acknowledge that when
read by the light of cannibal fires it seems to be true; and he
would insist that it be tried by those human qualities which
are exhibited in the life of civilized communities. And he
12 Revelations of The War
would be right. To know what human nature really is, you
must study it in the man who thinks he has made the best of
himself. And I do not know where in all the world we can
find a man more perfectly satisfied with himself than the
German. In this respect I do not think he can be excelled
even by the inhabitants of that Isle of Modesty and Humble
Opinion geographically known as England! A land, I must
confess, which I am not over-much ashamed to own as my
birthplace. And a land, let me add, of which I was never less
ashamed, than now. Let us study this German paragon who
is so superlatively pleased with himself as to desire to make
the rest of humankind over into his own image and after his
German civilization is an expression of a national concep-
tion of how all human powers, and all the potentialities of
human society, can most effectively be developed, and trained,
and disciplined, and organized, so as to command the world's
resources for the state's fullest advantage. And what has that
civilization done for human nature. Is it still "enmity against
God"? Is it still unsubject to His law? The law of God is
an expression of His character, a rescript of His nature. And
the law of God stands for truth, and righteousness, and justice,
and honor. But what is the relation of that human nature,
which German civilization has improved to the utmost, to these
great moral principles involved in the law of God? Let the
broken-hearted women whom the German sword has widowed,
and the multitude of children whom the sword of "civiliza-
tion" has orphaned, answer! Aye, the cries of seven million
homeless and starving Belgians; the groans of other millions
whom war has wounded and bereaved; the noise of shovels
which cover with the kindly earth the scores of thousands
slain; the sobbing of the ocean-wave reluctantly compelled to
orphan the children of those that go down to the sea in ships;
the thunder of the thousand guns; if all these harrowing sounds
could be articulated, the voice of war on land and sea, and in
The War and Human Nature 13
the very air of heaven would cry, "To be carnally minded is
death. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God:
for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be."
II. I think the argument will gain in force if we subject
this civilization to a simple analysis, and consider THE EFFECT
OF SOME OF ITS ELEMENTS UPON HUMAN NATURE.
No one outside of Germany will contend that the German
science of government is promotive of human weal. But what
if we judge it by their own appraisement? Since Germany
would impose it upon the rest of the world it must be good in
her eyes. And is human nature changed by political systems'
Can you make a city holy by acts of Parliament, or Imperial
decrees? Can you make human nature fit to walk the streets
of gold by any sort of political reform? Will you blame the
Kaiser for the war? or lay it at the door of the principle of
autocracy? You must go deeper than that. When Germany
comes to herself she must confess to having exemplified this
common human bias toward evil, "All we like sheep have gone
astray; we have turned every one to his own way." No human
law has ever made the carnal mind subject to the law of God.
But consider the effect of education upon human nature.
I suppose it would generally be conceded that no nation in the
world has surpassed Germany in her educational zeal. As an
illustration of the thoroughness of her system, I may tell you
that in the year 1901, of more than a quarter of a million
recruits, only 131, or less than one-half of one per cent., were
found to be illiterate. Nor is this all. No nation has given
more attention to higher education than Germany. She has
more than twenty universities, and in these, during the winter
of I907-8, there was an army of nearly forty-seven thousand
students. In Germany the schoolmaster has been given the
fullest possible opportunity to show what improvement he ran
make in human nature. If the most thorough cultivation of
the intellect, and subsequent devotion to intellectual pursuits
14 Revelations of The War
could make men righteous, Germany must have been a
The notorious Bernhardi says that Germany, having "won
a position in the great community of civilized nations which
none else could fill," is therefore fitted "for the leadership in
the intellectual world." But with all her superior mentality
she had not the moral discernment to distinguish between right
and wrong; or, discerning, lacked the will to refuse the wrong.
And when this "leader in the intellectual world" had passed by,
truth was stricken the world around; righteousness was exiled;
justice, weaponless, lay blind and bleeding on the field; and
honor, like Tamar, in token of the shame of her violation, with
ashes on her head, and garments rent, lays her hand upon her
head and goes on crying! Not from the pulpits of Christen-
dom only; but from the battlefields of Europe, and the chan-
cellories of the world, this truth is proclaimed, "The carnal
mind is enmity against God, and against truth, and righteous-
ness, and justice, and honor."
And, still regarding the service of the intellect to human
nature, consider its special ministry in the direction of science.
Both in scientific discovery and application, certainly in the
latter, Germany has led the world. Perhaps nowhere in the
world is technical education so general and advanced as there.
No country has done more than Germany to increase man's
dominion over nature, and to put her resources at his com-
mand. But to what use has she put the power thus acquired?
She has used it to wound rather than to heal; to impoverish
rather than to enrich; to destroy rather than to build; to kill
rather than to make alive. I hope the report was untrue, but
when one hears of the suggestion to reinforce German bullets
with German cholera cultures, he cannot but feel that no
greater prostitution:of knowledge and human skill can be
imagined; and one seems to hear a grieved, reproving Voice
exclaiming, "Long ago I told you, 'Out of the heart proceed
The War and Human Nature 15
evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications. thefts. false
witness, blasphemies: these are the things which defile a man.' "
But is not religion an element in modern civilization
Did not Germany give us Luther and the Reformation? Surely
religion can change human nature? No, even religion may fail.
When religion degenerates into a mere philosophy; when it
rejects a divine revelation, and substitutes the pride of intellect
for the humble and the contrite heart, it loses the power to
make men new. One is scarcely surprised to learn that the
educational and religious leaders in Germany have been fore-
most in influencing the people in support of the war, themselves
the awful illustrations of this truth, "The carnal mind is
enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God,
neither indeed can be."
But what of human nature on the other side of this con-
flict? What of the human nature of the Allies? If a burglar
breaks into a gambler's house and the gambler bravely defends
his hearth, he is not thereby made an honest man. Or if one
should intervene to save a woman from a ruffian's assault,
though the act may display heroic qualities, it does not furnish
a certificate of a clean heart. And Russia, and Serbia, and
France, and Belgium, are fighting for their lives against a giant
outlaw, and they are all fighting bravely. And Britain is fight-
ing in defence of the weak, it is true; but she is fighting also
for the conservation of the strength of the mighty. And her
motives are not to be impugned in either case. But that does
not disprove the text. Germany provides an extreme example
which requires no special moral discernment to see. But
British human nature unrestrained can display fearful depths
of depravity, too. None of us dream what evil is within; and
we are like Hazael, who, when told of the horrible atrocities,
of which he would be guilty, replied, "But what, is thy servant
a dog, that he should do this great thing?" But we shall be
wiser, if, in view of the prophecy of the human betrayal of
16 Revelations of The War
the Incarnation of honor, and justice, and righteousness, and
truth, we humbly ask, "Lord, is it I?"
All this I have said for the sole purpose of proving that
there can be no heaven for unchanged human nature; and that
no one can be a citizen of the New Jerusalem who is only civil-
ized, and educated, and religious. Salvation consists in a per-
sonal experience of the regenerating grace of the Spirit of
God: "Ye must be born again." And no human power can
accomplish that change.
"Lo! the incarnate God, ascended,
Pleads the merit of His blood;
Venture on Him, venture wholly,
Let no other trust intrude;
None but Jesus
Can do helpless sinners good."
"Yonder stars are rising. Have you ever noticed
their order, heard their ancient names, thought of
what they were, as teachers, 'lecturers,' in that large
public hall of the night, to the wisest men of old?
Have you ever thought of the direct promise to you
yourselves, that you may be like them if you will?
'They that be wise shall shine as the brightness of
the firmament; and they that turn many to righteous-
ness, as the stars, for ever and ever.' They that be
WISE. Don't think that means knowing how big the
moon is. It means knowing what you ought to do, as
man or woman; what your duty to your father is, to
your child, to your neighbour, to nations your neigh-
"CULTURE" AND EVOLUTION
"So God created man in His own image, in the image of God
created He him; male and female created He them."-Gen. 1:27.
"And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth;
and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil
"When they knew God, they glorified Him not as God, neither
were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish
heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became
fools, and changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image
like to corruptible man, and to birds, and four-footed beasts, and
creeping things."—Romans 1:21-23.
"By one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so
death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned."—Romans 5:12.
"He that is unrighteous, let him do unrighteousness yet more:
and he that is filthy, let him he made filthy yet more: and he that is
righteous, let him do righteousness yet more: and he that is holy, let
him be made holy yet more."—Rev. 22:11.
I am to speak to you this evening on "Culture" and Evolu-
tion, that we may consider how the theory of evolution is
affected by the war.
And I must begin with an apology for speaking upon such
a subject at all. The pulpit should concern itself with spiritual
matters: its special science is theology, which is the word about
God. But it is impossible that this chief of all sciences should
be unaffected by the general progress of human knowledge;
for truth never contradicts itself, but is in perfect agreement
in all realms. Moreover, the language of science, used in a
highly technical sense by experts to-day, becomes the common
20 Revelations of The War
street-talk of to-morrow; and men adopt new phrases, as some
people affect a grand style in dress by the secret purchase of
second-hand costumes of distinction: in the one case with no
knowledge of the figure the garment was first made to fit, and
in the other, with only the vaguest apprehension of the idea
these borrowed phrases were originally coined to express.
I am thus forced to set before you some definitions; and
I must try to cast them in as simple, popular, and untechnical,
a mold as possible. For what if we were confined to Herbert
Spencer's definition of evolution? He says: "Evolution is an
integration of matter and concomitant dissipation of motion;
during which the matter passes from an indefinite, incoherent
homogeneity to a definite, coherent heterogeneity, and during
which the retained motion undergoes a parallel transforma-
tion"! But here is another and simpler definition: "The
physical world and all things in it, whether living or not liv-
ing, have originated by a process of evolution, due to the con-
tinuous operation of purely physical causes, out of a primitive
relatively formless matter." That is to say, the evolutionary
theory assumes that the physical universe has become what it
now is, not by successive creative acts of God, such as Genesis
describes, but by purely mechanical processes, in which the
original formless matter, by its own inherent energy, is cast
into new and ever-varying forms. Thus man is the highest
form of animate development, and is supposed to have mounted
by innumerable transmutations, from protoplasm, through tad-
pole, up to his present form divine.
If this evolutionary principle be a universal law, it follows
that it extends beyond the boundaries of the physical realm.
It must account for the human mind, as well as for the body,
and it must explain the moral consciousness of men also.
Hence, there is a science of social evolution, which under-
takes to account for human society, for national character, and
for the history of the world. In this wide sense, evolution is
"Culture" and Evolution 21
conceived of as "one universal process swaying alike the
physical and the moral world." Thus it comes to pass that
many present-day writers speak of the course of human history
as though it were a stream, all of whose tributaries had their
rise in some common prehistoric condition of human savagery.
This, of course, involves the assumption that all the moral
attributes of human nature are products of a stage of evolu-
tionary progress upward.
I am aware that this hypothesis has gained a somewhat
general acceptance, so that by many it is regarded as an estab-
lished law; while to others, who no longer consciously hold
it as a theory, it is like Abel in only one respect, that, being
dead, it yet speaketh; and thus it influences their thinking more
than they are aware. But fifty-five years is a short time in
which to test the truth of a theory which presumes to account
for the universal order of things as they are; and it is for
only that length of time, since the publication of Darwin's
"Origin of Species", that the theory has been received with
any general favor.
Is it not perfectly plain, however, that this view of the
physical and moral worlds is opposed to the verses of Scrip-
ture I have read? I know, of course, that many minds have
ingeniously devised not a few theories by which the Bible
might be interpreted to harmonize with the principle of phys-
ical and moral evolution. But all such attempts have been an
absolute failure. I have long since given it up. It is now
perfectly clear to me that the Bible and the evolutionary
hypothesis cannot both be true. It seems to me impossible
that any logical mind can come to any other conclusion. If
evolution could be established, for me, the Bible would be
forever discredited. All attempts at harmonization have
resulted only in the emasculation of Scripture in general; the
rejection of much of Genesis; the torturing of the whole
Pentateuch; the weakening of the Bible's authority; and the
dishonoring of its Subject, the glorious Son of God.
22 Revelations of The War
I hope to show that the proof or disproof of the theory
of evolution, as of the Bible, will be found in the moral rather
than in the physical realm. Geology's guesses at such vast
periods of time as are almost unimaginable, are beyond our
poor powers to prove or to deny. If you would gain a reputa-
tion as a prophet, you must be sure to date the time for the
fulfilment of your prophecies a few thousand years hence:
then you will be sure that no one will be able to remind you of
your presumption. The interesting speculations of biology as
to the probable reason for the resemblances between adult life
in the lower orders of nature, and embryonic life in the higher,
lead at most but to the borders of probability; and we may
none of us hope to live to such an age as would enable us to
travel far enough along that road of observation to arrive at
absolute certainty. But in the moral realm there is hope of
finding immediate certainty as to whether the Bible or evolu-
tion is worthy of further credence.
And this leads me to the necessity of framing another
definition. What is meant by "Culture"' Everybody knows
the meaning of such words as agriculture, the cultivation of
the field; and floriculture, the cultivation of flowers; and horti-
culture, the cultivation of the garden.
There are few more interesting occupations than that of
the study of words. They are often the expression of moral
sentiments; and so important are they that by our words we
are to be justified or condemned at the last day. A word which
is popularly received and employed, represents an idea which
is agreeable to the popular mind. Until the last century the
word "culture" was not in general use by English writers, but
was used only with a strong consciousness of the metaphor
involved: that is, the idea of tilling and preparing the earth
for crops, and developing to the full its potentialities. Rut
for the last fifty years it has come to mean more than that.
Mathew Arnold defined culture as "the acquainting of our-
selves with the best that has been known and said in the world,
"Culture" and Evolution 23
and thus with the history of the human spirit." Sir Edward
Burnett Tylor says: "Culture or civilization, taken in its wide
ethnographic sense, is that complex whole which includes
knowledge, belief, art, morals, law, custom and any other
capabilities and habits acquired by man as a member of so-
ciety." Another authority defines the word as now "applied
to the improvement of the whole man, bodily, mentally and
spiritually, although bodily training is not prominent unless
specially mentioned; the moral and the spiritual are jealously
included. ... Culture in its broadest sense may be called the
highest phase of civilization." Thus culture stands for the
"educing or drawing forth of all that is potentially in man,
the training of all the energies and capacities of his being to
the highest pitch, and directing them to their true ends."
You will see, therefore, that this word is a word of true
moral dignity, a word which consorts on terms of equality
with such verbal aristocrats as refinement, civilization, the
humanities, benevolence, and other words of high moral line-
age and association. The word cult, which stands for homage
and worship, is a near relative. "Culture," therefore, is a word
which is representative of the highest human product, physical
and moral, of the supposed evolutionary process.
So much for our English word of Latin origin "culture."
But what relation does that bear to the German word
spelled "Kultur"? I do not claim to be able to speak with
authority on matters involving exact German scholarship; but
I think you will find that the view I now present to you will
be accorded only the fullest confirmation upon inquiry at the
most authoritative sources.
You will, of course, recognize at once, that in their ety-
mological significance the English and German words are akin.
And in the sense in which it was used originally in German
speech, the word "kultur" was synonymous with our English
word "culture." As at present used, however, in German
24 Revelations of The War
thought the word "kultur" is as nearly as possible equivalent
to our now much-used English word "efficiency." Its present
inferior utilitarian meaning of efficiency is due to the importa-
tion into it of that concept which is the German idea of the
acme of human development as represented by German civil-
So that the word "kultur" itself is an example of the
working, even in human speech, of a law of deterioration. In
its present use it is shorn of all its finer attributes, and reduced
to a mechanical, inexorable, bringer-of-things to pass.
Can you imagine a piece of land of perhaps a few thou-
sand acres' extent? Through it there winds about a pure
river. On either side there stretch away rich undulating
lands, where cattle graze in green and luscious pastures, or
reapers work amid the golden grain. In one direction there is
a building of chaste but simple design,—a college, rich in its
traditions of unselfish devotion to the cause of learning, and
hallowed by its association with illustrious alumni who have
brought blessing to the world. Hard by, are gardens laid out
in perfect taste, abloom with rarest blossoms, enriching with
their beauty and their fragrance all who dwell about them.
And over there, a modest dwelling stands with grass and
flowers around it. Before the door a mother sits and sews
and sings; while little children romp about and fill the air with
merry laughter. Yonder on the highest point of land, there
stands a church, the symbol of the life it represents; the archi-
tectural embodiment of physical strength, of intellectual
achievement, of moral symmetry, and spiritual beauty: and
over all, the mantle of a living vine which drinks in rain and
clew of heaven, and lives by heaven's sunshine.
Can you hold that picture in your mind? That is "Cul-
But now, behold a transformation! The gently undulat-
ing fields are reduced to a common level. Where honey-
''Culture" and Evolution 25
suckled hedges grew, high walls surround the former scene
of beauty. Within, great buildings of the most forbidding,
prison-style of architecture are erected. Where once the gar-
den bloomed, huge iron cranes are working; and where the
children played, grimy men are laboring; and where the music
of the children's laughter rang, clanging machines and pon-
derous, thundering hammers fill the air with the most blatant
discords. The college is now only a chemicallaboratory. The
church with its heavenward-pointing tower is displaced by a
hideous chimney, through which great blast-furnaces pour
their essen-tial, sulphurous fumes, to blacken and blight the
land by day, and light the countryside by night as with the
lurid flames of hell!
That is what Germany calls "Kultur"!
The now notorious Bernhardi always assumes the correct-
ness of the supposed universal law of the survival of the
fittest. But agreement with that brutal doctrine is not confined
to Germany. It is a theory which is most acceptable to those
who believe themselves to be included in the category of "the
fittest." It is a merciless principle which determines the ruth-
less course of many commercial organizations known as
"trusts." And all sorts of iniquities have been justified by the
specious plea that it is only the operation of the universal law
of the survival of the fittest. If some must starve; if others
are crowded to the wall; if men and corporations rise on step-
ping stones of their dead competitors to higher things, no one
is to blame: it is due to the operation of inexorable law, the
No more immoral doctrine was ever promulgated. If it
were true, the Originator of that mighty impulse, the Author,
the First Great Cause—the name by which the Initiator of
the evolutionary potential is called is unimportant—the Creator
who first set that law in motion must have been an almighty
devil! And yet men have delighted in it; preachers have
26 Revelations of The War
preached it from their pulpits; and for fifty years it has been
a moral blight on human thought. But now we see its opera-
tion on a large scale. Prussian militarism is the ripe fruit of
the brutal doctrine of the survival of the fittest. If you ask
me whether the war does not prove its truth, I reply, "When
the war is over the world will see whether mere brute force
is fittest to survive;or whether it be true that even the sparrows
have an omnipotent Guardian who chooses the weak things
of the world to confound the things that are mighty, and base
things of the world, and things which are despised, and things
which are not, to bring to nought things that are.
In the meantime whatever may be said of evolution as
a physical law, the doctrine is utterly disproved as a principle
of operation in the moral realm. There "Culture" becomes
"Kultur"! History repeats itself, and Nebuchadnezzar de-
scends from his throne to the level of the beasts, until his hairs
are as eagles' feathers, and his nails as birds' claws. I will
not recite the horrors of the war; but ask you only to consider
whether Germany's open violation and repudiation of every
principle of morality shows one step of moral progress since
this moral turpitude was anciently declared to obtain, "And
God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth;
and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was
only evil continually."
Dr. F. W. Gunsaulus, of Chicago, in Plymouth Church,
Brooklyn, the pulpit oi Dr. Newcll nwight Hillis,—who was,
and for aught I know is still, an avowed evolutionist,—preach-
ing on "The Roots of the War," spoke of the theory of the sur-
vival of the fittest and of evolution in general, which he said
had played an important part in causing the war. Dr. Gun-
"Unconsciously, while we thought we were advancing into
the realms of eternal peace, we were carrying with us the lower
forms of life. We were carried away by the phraseology and
"Culture" and Evolution 27
the deepness of thought of evolution. We thought of war as
something belonging to the past, as belonging to a lower form
of life which we had left behind us.
"Man, in his primitive state, argued with the club, killed
his men and was a hero. The belief in this method of settling
differences resulted in war. Then man's march of progress
began, and it went on and on until he reached the stage that
he believed that he could never retrogress. He was proud of
himself; he could play and paint and mold and write; he began
to think that war was a relic of the past. But all too soon
his illusion was broken.
"Women and motherhood are factors which soften and
strengthen the life processes. Man came to realize that woman
had her place in the world. Woman was the cause of all
knightly deeds. Jesus found that the world had been over-
masculine, and He balanced it. To the mannish world He
added the feminine characteristics of faith, hope, sympathy,
patience, and love. Finally, we thought war belonged to the
past, when the flash of a pistol showed that we really had not
progressed; and the wreckage now lies over the blood-soaked
fields of Europe.
"Men have lost confidence in the theory of evolution since
the war began, Now men are turning back from their illusion
to the real religion, to the real God. All over Europe men
were interested in a god without moral fineness, not as good
as Jesus. Beliefs changed from this God to the scientific god
furnished by 'unphilosophic philosophers.' The nations of
Europe have thought of a god as a tribal god, owned by one
nation, a competitive god. This is one of the causes of the
"This quarter of a century has been the most impatient
in all history, and this impatience has led to the deification of
militant virtue and efficiency. This, in turn, has brought a war,.
the like of which Europe has never seen before.
28 Revelations of The War
"The weakness of the modern world is that it provides no
substitute for the apparent heroism which made the heroes of
the days of chivalry. Man's soul longs for strife, but the strife
it must be given is one which does not bring with it garments
of blood and rows of corpses. We must produce a battle
which will take all the work of mind and body. The arts and
sciences are stagnated, our progress made us believe that this
could never be; yet the powers of darkness have triumphed.
The grand vision was within reach, but it has been lost again."
We may well earnestly pray that Dr. Gunsaulus' predic-
tion that men will now return to the true God may be fulfilled.
For the fact is, my brother, left to ourselves we go down, not
up; we grow worse, not better. When men try to make for
themselves an image of the uncorruptible God, there is no
evidence of their being subject to any evolutionary law. Not
liking to retain God in their knowledge, professing themselves
to be wise, they become fools; and, first likening God to cor-
ruptible man, they do not stop in their downward course until
they have made as a representation of God, an image of some
creeping thing. Whether the image be material or mental, the
principle is the same; men do not naturally grow into a knowl-
edge of God.
You cannot account for Jesus by any theory of
evolution. He was not born from below but from above.
By the law of divine intervention, He entered into human
history. No mechanical theory of the universe can account for
Him. No such character as Jesus could ever have entered into
human life but by the principle He Himself enunciated, "I
came down from heaven." And moral perfection can never be
evolved from corrupt human nature. Germany shows us what
to expect,—Hell with the top taken off!
Our only hope is in God. Oh, do not try to rule Him out.
He must come to me personally, miraculously, supernaturally.
He must create within me a new heart. He must make me
"Culture" and Evolution 29
altogether a new creature. The whole philosophy of the moral
evil of the world is summed up in one of the verses I quoted
at the beginning, "By one man sin entered into the world, and
death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all
have sinned." And the evil of the world can be corrected only
by the advent of a superior power, by the power of the second
Man who is the Lord from heaven. I leave with you, there-
fore, the old doctrine which I must never fail to proclaim: in
the light of this world-wide horror we shall come to under-
stand why Jesus said, "Marvel not that I said unto thee, ye
must be born again." We must be regenerated by the Spirit
of God; our sins must be washed away by the blood of
Christ: "Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is
none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we
must be saved." That is the revelation of the Book; and that
is one of the revelations of the war.
"Our physical organism was devised for existence
in the atmosphere of our globe, and so is our moral
organism devised for existence in justice. Every fa-
culty craves for it, is more intimately bound up with
it than with the laws of gravitation, light, or heat;
and to plunge into iniustice is to fling ourselves head
foremost into what is hostile and unknown."
THE VIRTUE OF HATRED.
"These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomina-
tion unto him:
"A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent
"An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift
in running to mischief,
"A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord
among brethren."—Prov. 6: 16-19.
"Rut this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitanes,
which I also hate."—Rev. 2:6.
"So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitanes,
which thing I hate."—Rev. 2:15.
"Hear, O earth: behold, I will bring evil upon this people, even
the fruit of their own thoughts, because they have not hearkened unto
my words, nor to my law, but rejected it."—Jeremiah 6:19.
"They would none of my counsel: they despised all my reproof.
"Therefore shall they eat of the fruit of their own way, and be
filled with their own devices."—Prov. 1:30-31.
"Thou has loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore
God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above
thy fellows."—Hebrews 1:9.
The New Testament abounds with declarations of the love
of God. "God so loved the world that He gave His only
begotten Son;" "God commendeth His love toward us, in
that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us;" "God, who
is rich in mercy, for His great love wherewith He loved us,
even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together
with Christ:" "God is love. In this was manifested the love
of God toward us, because that God sent His only begotten
32 Revelations of The War
Son into the world, that we might live through Him." But
it would be impossible to quote even those passages where the
love of God is expressly mentioned: to give the passages where
it is implied, would necessitate reading the whole book. The
New Testament is as full of that doctrine as flowers are full
of sunshine; its myriad moral beauties are but the elemental
splendors of love's spectrum, the refracted rays of "the
light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of
But the light of love is not peculiar to the New Testa-
ment. Even in the book of the Law it is written: "The Lord
had a delight in thy fathers to love them, and He chose their
seed after them. He doth execute the judgment of the father-
less and widow, and loveth the stranger, in giving him food
and raiment." "The beloved of the Lord shall dwell in safety
by him." And in the Psalms: "The Lord will command his
loving kindness in the day time, and in the night his song
shall be with me:" "Because thy loving kindness is better than
life, my lips shall praise thee;" "Like as a father pitieth his
children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear Him." And in the
Prophets: "Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love:
therefore with loving kindness have I drawn thee;" "The
mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed; but my kind-
ness shall not depart from thee." But there is no end to the
Old Testament story of redeeming love. The Old Testament
is as full of Love's radiance as the New; only in the Old, it
is the silver sheen of the moon, an anticipatory reflection of the
glory of the morning Sun.
But the sun has heat as well as light: it warms and vital-
izes the creatures of the day, while its very light brings terror
and destruction to the creeping things of darkness. So there
is no true love which is not hatred on its reverse side: love
is the obverse of hatred, hatred the reverse of love. All living
creatures welcome or dread the morning according as they are
creatures of the day or night. "Thus saith the Lord of hosts,
The Virtue of Hatred 33
the God of Israel.... I sent unto you all my servants the
prophets, rising early and sending them, saying, Oh, do not
this abominable thing that I hate." "Your new moons and
appointed feasts my soul hateth." "I the Lord love judgment,
I hate robbery for burnt offering." "The Lord God hath
sworn by Himself, saith the Lord God of hosts, I abhor the
excellency of Jacob, and hate his palaces.' "Thou are not a
God that hath pleasure in wickedness: neither shall evil dwell
with thee. The foolish shall not stand in thy sight: thou
hatest all workers of iniquity. Thou shalt destroy them that
speak leasing: the Lord will abhor the bloody and deceitful
A very wise man whose unequalled opportunities for oh-
servation were augmented by divine revelation, designates the
seven elements into which his analysis has resolved that com-
pound of moral evil described as "the abominable thing which
God hates." I shall not enlarge upon them; but mention them
that you may see that no book that has been written, so tersely
summarizes the elements of that abominable thing with which
we are now at war.
"These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an
abomination unto him: A proud look—haughty eyes",—the
Will-to-Power of Nietzsche, the lordly ambition of Prussian-
ism, the arrogance of Kaiserism; "A lying tongue",—a policy
of deception, a programme of deliberate hypocrisy; "And
hands that shed innocent blood",—a campaign of murder, a
purpose of wanton destruction, an aggressive militarism; "An
heart that deviseth wicked imaginations",—an immoral intel-
lectualism, a philosophy of passion, a demonized mentality;
"Feet that be swift in running to mischief",—a criminal mo-
biIity, a profanation of physical endowment, a prostitution of
physical efficiency to evil ends; "A false witness that speaketh
lies",—a tongue that adds to its lying about itself, a lying wit-
ness concerning others, a false diplomacy, a truce-breaking
34 Revelations of The War
statesmanship, a lying journalism; "And he that soweth dis-
cord among brethren",—a disturber of the peace, a mover of
sedition, an instigator of anarchy, an inspirer of suspicion, and
envy, and hate, a maker of war, an agent of death and of hell!
I do not strain this Scripture in the least in this applica-
tion; it is in agreement with every sound principle of exegesis.
The German programme in word and deed is a composite of
these seven abominations which God hates.
What ought our attitude to be? Let us examine the prin-
ciple involved in the verses frcm Revelation for answer.
The church at Pergamos was commended for its general
faithfulness; but was censured for looking lightly upon the
doctrine of Balaam and the doctrine of the Nicolaitanes:
which means that they readily tolerated evil in the abstract.
The church at Ephesus, while admonished for having in some
measure forsaken her first love, is yet commended for this
special virtue, that she hated the deeds of the Nicolaitanes
which her Lord also hated. You observe, evil in the abstract
was tolerated; but when it bore fruit in deeds, or works, it
I have asked the question, "Ought we to learn how to
hate?" Are there some things of which we have been too
tolerant? It has been unpopular, theortically, to hate any-
thing. It has for some time been assumed that little or nothing
is left in the world deserving of hate. Perhaps there never
was an age more impatient of religious dogmatism than ours
has been. We have boasted of our enquiring minds. One
might almost suppose that the interrogation point was a twen-
tieth century invention. And we have talked as though this
generation had altogether run to intellect, as grain is some-
times nearly all head and no straw. But so far as moral and
religious questions are concerned, there has been a dogmatism
of unbelief which has been so aggressive that it has not suf-
fered the little Belgiums of religious faith to be at peace any-
The Virtue of Hatred 35
where. We have heard such laudation of the modern mind
that one might imagine thinking to be a new thing under the
sun. And yet, curiously enough, the value of it all is dis-
counted by the general insistence upon the principle, that
thought and teaching are of no importance after all, since it is
the character and conduct which really matter! A man may
be a preacher of anarchy, a teacher of the rankest infidelity,
hut he is such a "nice" man that he cannot be far wrong!
A man may use the pulpit to spread his deadly doubts to
other minds; he may undermine his hearers' confidence in the
Bible; he may make light of the Cross, and pour contempt
upon the precious blood; but what of it? You are not so
"narrow," or "bigoted," or "antiquated," as to say a word
in opposition, I hope? "Don't you know, sir, that he is the
most delightful man in the neighborhood? And besides, he
sat up with a sick man for a whole night last week, and has
been known to do many other kind acts in a quiet way. And I
am not so much concerned about a man's Sunday sermons as
about his Monday's service." You ought to applaud a senti-
ment like that! It has been urged in defence of almost every
religious iconoclast of recent years, that he was a very "nice"
man: and this by the champions of modern intellectualism.
This generation has been blind to evil in the abstract: as
though you could long continue to sow wrong thoughts without
reaping a harvest. It is folly to encourage men to think law-
lessly and expect them to act righteously.
A few years ago I heard a certain celebrated lecturer lec-
ture on Macbeth. He tried to find some extenuation for the
regicide's many crimes. Between the witches and his wife he
thought Macbeth was sorely tempted. At the completion of
the lecture, the chairman complimented the lecturer on his
extraordinary interpretation of Macbeth's character, and added
that he had himself to confess to having long entertained "a
sneaking regard for Milton's Satan." And it has been quite
popular to entertain a sneaking regard for Satan himself, so
36 Revelations of The War
long as he had the good sense to keep himself respectable. Of
course, if he should get drunk, or turn burglar, or kill any-
body, or commit any other vulgar offense, he could not be
tolerated; but if he writes a book, or becomes a preacher, or
a professor, then we will discuss his latest deliverance at after-
noon tea, and reach the conclusion that on all these matters
wise men maintain an open mind!
Prof. Henry Herbert Williams of Oxford says: "Perhaps
the one European thinker who has carried evolutionary prin-
ciples in ethics to their logical conclusion is Freidrich Nietzsche.
Almost any system of morality or immorality might find some
justification in Nietzsche's writings, which are extraordinarily
chaotic and full of the wildest exaggerations. Yet it has been
a true instinct which has led popular opinion as testified to by
current literature to find in Nietzsche the most orthodox ex-
ponent of Darwinian ideas in their application to ethics. For
he saw clearly that to be successful evolutionary ethics must
involve the 'transvaluation of all values,' the 'demoralization'
of all ordinary morality. He accepted frankly the glorification
of brute strength, superior cunning and all the qualities neces-
sary for success in the struggle for existence, to which the
ethics of evolution necessarily tend." But few learned to hate
the Nietzschean philosophy. It was only a philosophy, an idea,
a thought, a doctrine, an abstraction: why trouble about it?
Hold that fact in your mind; for I shall return to it.
The late Dr. Parker was once preaching on Ezra 9:3: "And
when I heard this thing, I rent my garment, and my mantle,
and plucked off the hair of my head and of my beard, and
sat down astonied." His plea was for men who could be
shocked out of their complacency, who could be astonished.
The Kaiser, as I recall the circumstances of the address, had
just made one of his many speeches, in which he had referred
to the Sultan, Abdul Hamid, as "his friend the Sultan." With
the Armenian atrocities still fresh in his memory, Dr. Parker
grew indignant at the Kaiser's expression of fraternal regard,
The Virtue of Hatred 37
and said, "I say, in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy
Ghost, God damn the Sultan!" Dr. Parker repudiated the idea
that civilization could regard the Sultan as a friend. Observe,
he cursed the Sultan's deeds: he repudiated the Kaiser's doc-
trine. Now we know he might well have damned the Kaiser,
too. The plea of the whole sermon, as I remember it, was for
men who were sensitive enough to be astonished in the face
of moral evil.
But you see, as a rule, evil is tolerated in the abstract:
only in the concrete do we learn to hate it. Hence this word,
"Hear, O earth: behold, I will bring evil upon this people,
even the fruit of their own thoughts, because they have not
hearkened unto my words, nor to my law, but rejected it."
A little boy asked his father what gunpowder was. His father
replied that it was composed of brimstone, charcoal, and salt-
petre. The little fellow repeated the words; but had no idea of
their meaning. Soon after his father took him to a near-
by quarry. When a heavy charge was exploded, and the child
in terror asked, "What is that?" his father said, "That is gun-
powder." So God allows men to see the fruit of their
thoughts. "Therefore shall they eat of the fruit of their own
way, and be filled with their own devices." Thus, to return to
Nietzsche: in a book, or a professor's chair he is tolerable; but
when his philosophy runs in rivers of blood, when his ideas
becomes bullets, and his doctrines a devouring scourge, his out-
Darwining of Darwin a world-wide curse; we can go from
Pergamos to Ephesus, from the doctrines of the Nicolaitanes
to their deeds, and hate what God hates.
What of those thoughts whose fruit is only fully ripened
in the other life? What if any should eat the fruit of their
way there? Mayhap, if we could know what souls have been
wrecked by the mutilation of this chart called the Bible; what:
paths to perdition have been paved by the bloodless gospels of
the day; we should anathematize the mutilators of the Word
38 Revelations of The War
as Paul did in his day; and we should understand the psalmist
in his saying, "I hate thoughts, but thy law do I love."
But I must give you a few words of guidance before I
send you away. The morality of love or hatred is determined
by the character of its object. Where shall we find a safe
guide? There is only One: "Unto the Son he said, Thy throne,
O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the
sceptre of thy kingdom. Thou hast loved righteousness, and
hated iniquity: therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed
thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows."
We can cleave to the good, only as we abhor the evil. The
love a mother lavishes upon her child, in its attitude toward
whatever would injure her darling, is hatred. We cannot share
the anointing of the oil of gladness by any attitude of moral
neutrality. We must have part in this moral warfare; and war
means hatred somewhere. There is no pleasure in mere ab-
stinence from that which we desire; nor is there satisfaction in
participation in that in which we have no heart. I pity neutral
nations in this war. There can be no national or international
gladness or world peace, that is not based on an intense hatred
of the principles which have brought this tragedy on the earth;
and a still more passionate devotion to those principles of
righteousness for which we now contend.
The oil of gladness cannot be compounded of elements
that neutralize each other: you cannot love righteousness and
iniquity at the same time, and be at peace. No servant can
serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love
the other; or else he will hold to the one and despise the other.
Repentance and faith are the complement of each other: a
man must loathe his sin or he cannot love his Saviour. Glad-
ness and joy are moral qualities: not a physical or mental
effect produced by outward causes; but a quality of the mind.
That means—oh, hear it again to-night, "Ye must be born
The Virtue of Hatred 39
The world has seen only one perfect exemplification of
this principle. He so loved righteousness that He coadescend-
ed to the infinite stoop of the Incarnation, that human nature
might appear in righteousness before God: He so hated in-
iquity that He took it to the Cross, and in His own body
nailed it there: and in the joy of this relationship He endured
the Cross and despised the shame.
And the way of gladness and glory is the way of union
with Christ. They may go to battle with singing who
fight because they love righteousness and hate iniquity; and
even though they fall they will share the divine anointing with
the oil of joy. Let us take the divine path to glory, which is
the way of hatred as well as of love. The ripe fruit of evil
thinking appears at "the place of a skull." We must learn by
grace to hate the sin which nailed Christ there; and, looking
by faith to Him, enthroned in gladness and in glory, grace will
make us to love the righteousness for love of which He is
exalted, and given a Name which is above every name.
"I do, indeed, consider the French Revolution as
the severest trial which the visitation of Providence
has ever yet inflicted upon the nations of the earth:
but I cannot help reflecting, with satisfaction, that
this country, even under such a trial, has not only
been exempted from those calamities which have cov-
ered almost every other part of Europe, but appears
to have been reserved as a refuge and asylum to those
who fled from its persecutions, as a barrier to oppose
its progress, and perhaps ultimately as an instrument
to deliver the world from the crimes and miseries
which have attended it."
WILLIAM PITT, in a speech in
the house of Conmons February 3rd, 1800, defending
his refusal to negotiate with Bonaparte.
BELGIUM AND EXPIATION.
"Then thou shalt give life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth,
hand for hand, foot for foot, burning for burning, wound for wound,
stripe for stripe."—Exodus 21:23-25.
"For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to
you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the
blood that maketh an atonement for the soul" (or, "by reason of the
life," R.V.).-Lev. 17: 11.
"Without shedding of blood is no remission."—Hebrews 9:22.
The first of these texts may be described as a state law:
it does not authorize private vengeance. It is a law which
imposes upon the state the obligation to take cognizance of
evil-doing, and to visit upon the wrong-doer a punishment
exactly proportioned to the offence. It must, I think, be ad-
mitted that this ancient statute involves the principle of retribu-
tion. It implies much more than reparation. Literally the loss
of one eye cannot be made good by the loss of another, nor
can one life be restored by the taking of another. This statute
therefore assumes a moral order, a moral balance which is
disturbed by wrong-doing, and which can be appeased, or
restored, only by a punishment which is its moral equivalent.
I am quite aware that such a conception of the relation
of penalty and offence to the moral law, can scarcely be
called modern. The humanitarian philosophies of the last cen-
tury or less, and the conception of still more recent humanistic
schools, all have tended to minimize, if not utterly to reject the
principle of the necessity for retribution in human govern-
42 Revelations of The War
ment. In this view, "The man who breaks the law is himself
a product of social evolution and cannot be regarded as solely
responsible for his disposition to transgress."
Hence there is a disposition to regard punishment as
justifiable only as it exercises a deterrent or reformative in-
fluence; and it is implicitly denied that a universal, sensitive,
perfectly balanced, moral order, through its witness in the
public conscience, demands or should be afforded, satisfaction
through retribution. That a deterring or reforming effect may
be part of the function of punishment no one, surely, would
be disposed to deny; but the principle of exact proportion and
equivalent insisted upon in this statute, most certainly involves
the idea of satisfaction, retribution, or expiation.
But now look at the second text. This was a religious
ordinance. It has to do with the central fact of the divinely
revealed plan by which sinful man was permitted to come
into the presence of the Holy One and live. Atonement was
to be effected by blood, and the reason assigned for this is,
that "the life of the flesh is in the blood." The blood was
the life in solution, and the offering of the blood was the offer-
ing of life. Atonement was accomplished on the ground
of expiation, because satisfaction was thus rendered the out-
raged law. The principle, therefore, of an eye for an eye, and
a life for a life, was recognized in this Old Testament ritual of
And throughout the New Testament, redemption through
the blood of Christ, as being the Antitype of the Old Testament
types, is everywhere assumed or explicitly taught. The teach-
ing of the New Testament with respect to the atonement is
summed up in our third text, "Without shedding of blood there
is no remission."
But granted that in some way the blood of Christ
is necessary to atonement, and the forgiveness of sins,
how am I to regard the death of Christ? How does the Cross
Belgium and Expiation 43
minister salvation to sinners? Has it any objective value?
Does it do something for me that I could not do for myself,
and quite apart from myself? Does the Cross, may I rever-
ently enquire, do anything for God? Does it minister any-
thing to His own moral nature? Or is the effect of the Cross
wholly subjective? Does it minister something to me, and
accomplish something in me? And does it do nothing more?
Is it surprising that the humanitarian philosophies to
which already I have referred, should have some effect upon
our theology? Do not misunderstand. The various views of
the atonement to which I shall refer are not new; but the
modern glorification of "humanity" has served specially to
The view of Grotius that Christ died, not to satisfy the
outraged moral nature of God, but in the interests of the divine
government,—"the governmental theory," is nearly equivalent
to the view that punishment must be inflicted only as a deter-
rent. The teaching that lays stress upon the Incarnation rather
than upon the death of Christ, and which views the atonement
as effected by the Incarnation,—by the identification of the
divine with the human; and which regards the death of Christ
as being only incidental to the Incarnation, is a doctrine which
has been widely held. But in that alone you have no room for
expiation, or the principle of retribution. The element of suf-
fering represented in the Cross, in so far as it is penal, is
regarded as reformative rather than retributive.
And there is the further theory, that the life and death
of Christ together constitute an example; exhibiting the bless-
ings of obedience to the will of God; displaying the moral'
heroism of unselfish devotion to others; and, above all, reveal-
ing the love of God for men, has found wide acceptance;
and the Cross of Christ has been preached for the moral influ-
ence it exerts, rather than as a substitutionary or expiatory
sacrifice for sin.
44 Revelations of The War
I think it must be admitted that all these views of the
atonement have elements of truth in them. Surely the divine
government is not unaffected by the death of Christ. And it
is true also that the atonement is made possible by the Incarna-
tion; and that the life and death of Christ is the mightiest
moral influence the world has ever felt. But when all this has
been said, and nothing more, the whole case has not been
All these theories, especially the last two, may be accepted
as so many aspects of the truth of the atonement, without con-
tradiction of our much-vaunted human advancement. Retri-
bution implies a criminal: not a fault, but a felony; not in-
firmity, but iniquity; not the respectable legitimacy of evolu-
tion, but the lawlessness of revolution. Retribution implies not
leniency, but inexorability; not pity, but punishment; not ef-
feminate sentimentalism, but truth, and righteousness, and
The implication of the necessity for retribution, for ex-
piation, in our relation to God and His laws, and they are one,
is utterly opposed to the whole theory of evolutionary develop-
ment; and, we may as well frankly admit, is decidedly uncom-
plimentary to human nature. This principle of salvation
through the shedding of blood does not put human nature on
a throne of ivory and crown it with laurels; it puts it in the
prisoner's dock, and passes sentence of death upon it. There-
fore has the offence of the Cross not ceased.
But what has all this to do with "Revelations of the War" ?
I have tried to show you that human nature does not improve
of itself; but, unregenerated, is as depraved as ever. Then,
next, I sought to show you that the evolutionary hypothesis,
so far as it was supposed to apply to the moral realm, is for-
ever disproved by the war. The world has never witnessed
such a colossal exhibition of immorality as it is witnessing
to-day. The utmost human "culture" has produced a national
Belgium and Expiation 45
specimen more akin to devils than to angels. And last Sunday
I endeavored to show you that there is a time to hate as well
as to love; and that the Cross is an exhibition of divine hate
as well as of divine love.
With all that I have said this evening in your mind, you
will see my purpose if now I try to bring it into the light of
the lurid glare of Belgium's fires.
I. WILL ANYBODY NOW CONTEND THAT THERE IS NO
NEED FOR RETRIBUTION IN THE DIVINE GOVERNMENT OF MEN,
no need for expiation as a condition of salvation?
It is interesting to observe that public opinion upon many
things has undergone a great change during the last six months.
In the light of this fearful conflagation, to living men and
women, life can never again be as it once was. Norman Angell
is scarcely regarded as an authority; and few would now con-
tend that nothing is ever settled by war. On the contrary we
feel that some things can be settled by war, and must be
settled by this war.
And I have noticed that the light of the war has illumined
many an editorial mind. Influential journals which, a year
ago or less, insisted that punishment must be inflicted solely
with a view to its deterrent and reformative effects, sound a
different note when Belgium is under review. The theory of
punishment to which I have referred relates to the present:
and the future, it does not touch the past. It does not make
up the deficit of yesterday; it does not make amends for injury
inflicted. It assumes that the moral loss involved in evil doing
is permanent, and aims only at preventing its repetition.
But is no one to pay for Belgium's anguish? Are we
content so to deal with Germany as merely to make it impos-
sible for her to repeat the offence, and to deter all others from
making similar attempts? These things we must insure, of
course: but we must do more. You may call me what you
will, but it appears to me that Germany's sin against Belgium
46 Revelations of The War
and Poland and Galicia, against civilization, must be expiated.
Such a crime cries out for retribution. If you do not feel
this to be so, frankly, I cannot compliment you on your moral
But I believe that is the general view. It is one of the
revelations of the war. But why did we need it? Are we
morally near-sighted? Do ordinary violations of moral prin-
ciple appear small and insignificant to us? Is the focus of
our moral vision such that sin can ordinarily be discerned, as
certain deadly bacteria are discovered and identified, only
through a powerful microscope? Can the nature of sin be
understood by us only when it is exhibited on a large scale?
Are our moral sensibilities, even in those of the finest mold,
so dulled and benumbed, that we are like deaf people who are
unconscious of such vibrations as are audible to the acute ear,
and are aroused only by some terrific thunder-clap; or, like
those so dull of vision that ordinary light-waves falling on the
eye make no impression, and are conscious of the approach
of light only under the direct rays of the sun?
If so, the shock and illumination occasioned by the horrors
of this war may help us to understand how sin, even the least
sin, outrages the moral sensibilities of Deity. And if now our
moral natures demand that this world outrage be punished, we
may dimly understand why righteousness, and justice, and
truth, as elements of divine holiness, decree, "Without shed-
ding of blood is no remission."
II. The war may also help us to understand THE ENORM-
ITY OF POTENTIAL EVIL AND THE NECESSITY FOR ANTICIPAT-
We demand expiation now, when the evil appears in all
the hideousness of its full development. Has it occurred to
you that this exhibition of human depravity finds God unsur-
prised? He knew the heart of that arch-blasphemer, the
Kaiser, long ago, knew it better than the Kaiser did.
Belgium and Expiation 47
Writers of all nationalities have endeavored to place the
responsibility for this horror. Nietzsche the philosopher, and
Treitschke the historian, have been made to bear a large share.
But no one can stop there. Many go back to Frederick the
Great, and say that he was the author of this movement, now
devastating the world. He was evil enough, it is true. But
he has been dead for one hundred and twenty-nine years. Is it
possible that evil issuing from his mind is bearing this bitter
fruit more than a century and a quarter later?
Do you remember that when the ten tribes revolted
under Rehoboam's despotic rule, and made Jeroboam the son
of Nebat king, to avoid the necessity of their going up to
Jerusalem to worship, Jeroboam set up calves in Bethel and
Dan, saying, "It is too much for you to go up to Jerusalem:
behold thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the
land of Egypt"? And you recall how every succeeding king
followed in Jeroboam's footsteps: so that all down through
Israel's subsequent history the melancholy record persists, "He
walked in the ways of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, who did
sin, and who made Israel to sin." And when at last, more
than two hundred and fifty years later, the nation was utterly
ruined, and the tell tribes carried away captive into Assyria,
God explained their ruin, saying, "Thy calf, O Samaria, hath
cast thee off." Jeroboam's "great sin" did not fully ripen until
two hundred and fifty years after. But God saw the full fruit
of it in the germ. He saw the present war in Nietzschean
philosophy. He saw it potentially in the ambition of Frederick
Do you understand then why Jesus said there is adultery
in a look, and murder in an unforgiving heart? Do you under-
stand why our dreams of conquest, our ambitions, our selfish
aims, may, in the sight of God, be as heinous as what we now
call Prussianism? We do not see, but God sees their poten-
aiality; He sees that they are the germ of an evil which may
48 Revelations of The War
not only curse the earth, but extend its fatal influence into
the eternal future.
Do you untlerstand therefore why God put His brand upon
the brow of Cain? The sin of Cain had the sin of the Kaiser,
of Napoleon, of Frederick the Great, of Attila the Hun, and
of every public and private murderer of history, involved in it,
And go back farther still and understand what this meaneth,
"By one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and
so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned."
And understanding that, know, too, why, from the begin-
ning, "Without shedding of blood there was no remission";
and why the smoke of sacrifice ascended in pledge of that
great expiatory Sacrifice on Calvary. And know, too, that in-
asmuch as all the sins of the race were known by God to be
potentially involved in the first transgression, the world owes
its continuance, and believing souls their salvation, to the
promise of a Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.
III. "To a promise," did I say? To what is all the horror
of this war to be attributed? To a broken promise. And all
the sorrow of the world is due to the same cause, "Which my
covenant they brake." In view of the indescribable hell which
may be involved in the breaking of a pledge, do you wonder
that the sin of all sin is to charge God with being untrue to
His word' "He that believeth not God, hath made Him a
liar, because he believeth not the record that God gave of His
Son." Do you wonder that unbelief is the damning sin? If
the faithlessness of an earthly ruler can work such woe upon
earth, the very thought of divine unfaithfulness is the most
horrible blasphemy,—then would the earth reel beneath us, and
the heavens fall, and the stars and all the myriad worlds would
leave their courses, and plunge into universal war, leading to
everlasting chaos, and eternal night!
Oh, we must believe in God, and in His Son Jesus Christ!
There is nothing left to us. To expiate our awful guilt, poten-
Belgium and Expiation 49
tially involved in Adam's sin, "He was foreordained before the
foundation of the world, and was manifest in these last days
for you, who by Him do believe in God, that raised him from
the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might
be in God."
Oh, unsaved man, be afraid of sin and flee to Jesus, and
find redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of
sins! And as for you who are Christians, and who come to
the table of the Lord to-night, let us come with a new under-
standing of the solemn words, "This cup is the new covenant
in my blood." "Without shedding of blood is no remission."
"While philosophy had for the Jews no meaning,
history had a deeper significance than for any other
people. It was the chief factor in their national
unity, the source from which they drew ethical and
spiritual enlightenment. Thither they turned as to
living oracles inscribed with the finger of the Almighty.
To history they appealed as the supreme tribunal of
God's justice. The great monarchies, Egypt, Assyria,
Babylon. Persia, pass across the scene. Their fortunes
cross and interlock into those of the chosen race.
Israel is the pivot on which their destiny turns. His-
tory, in a word, is the drama in which God Himself
is the protagonist, indicating His justice and moral
government on the stage of the visible world."
BUTCHER, Harvard Lectures on Greek Subjects.
GERMANY AND FUTURE PUNISHMENT.
"Therefore also said the wisdom of God, I will send them
prophets and apostles, and some of them they shall slay and persecute:
"That the blood of all the prophets, which was shed from the
foundation of the world, may be required of this generation:
"From the blood of Abel unto the blood of Zacharias, which
perished between the altar and the temple: verily I say unto you,
It shall be required of this generation."—Luke 11:49-51.
One of the indubitable proofs of the Bible's being the very
word of God, consists in its universality. It is contemporane-
ous with every period of human history. Its prophecies of last
things are formed of principles that are older than the ever-
lasting hills; its history is a record and an exhibition of the
age-long conflict of moral opposites; its poetry is the utterance
of the soul's experience of the depths and heights of sorrow
and of joy; and the Book as a whole is a revelation of those
eternal principles in which the moral order of the universe
consists. One of the elements of its universality is its cos-
mopolitanism: while of Hebrew human authorship, it is essen-
tially unracial and unnational. Since God is the God of all
the nations of the earth, this is His word to everybody.
This text is one of the great texts of the Bible; it
stretches from the first human death, indeed, in principle,
from the first human sin, to the final judgment; and spans all
intervening events. It insists upon the unity and continuity
of the moral law; and upon the timelessness of moral acts.
52 Revelations of The War
It teaches that the moral witness of Abel's blood speaks in the
blood of all the prophets down to the end of time; and that
every offence against that moral order for which it speaks
reaches back in its involved purpose to the deed of Cain. It
affords us just a glimpse into the meaning of that great saying,
"One day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand
years as one day."
I am to speak of "Germany and Future Punishment," and
to try to answer the question, "Do some crimes deserve hell?"
And I shall again try to bring this world-wide tragedy into
the light of the word of God for judgment.
I. My first task this evening must be to try to explain
to you THE AGELESS CHARACTER OF GOD'S MORAL WITNESS IN
The implication of the text is, that in all human history,
God has never left himself without a witness to speak for Him
in behalf of righteousness and against iniquity.
The proposals of certain peace societies that this day be
observed as a day of thanksgiving for a hundred years of peace
between Great Britain and the United States is a most admirable
one. I am sure the noble sentiment expressed in Toronto last
week by ex-President Taft, that all possibility of war between
these two nations is at an end, will be received by Britons every-
where with a fervent Amen. We are bound to our American
neighbors by so many ties, which we like to think of as in-
dissoluble, that it seems as though the peace of a century may
easily be extended indefinitely. But it is just because Britons
entertain such a high regard for the United States, and feel
that its honor among the nations is scarcely separable from
our own, that we have been rather disappointed with Cousin
Jonathan lately. I do not know that any of us would desire
to see the United States involved in hostilities, unless her par-
ticipation could insure the speedier termination of the fearful
carnage; and that is questionable. We are disappointed only
Germany and Future Punishment 53
because the United States has uttered no protest against those
crimes which have outraged the conscience of the world. We
did not want her to go to war: and we are not angry; we are
only deeply grieved, and sorely disappointed that she has set
forth no moral witness against the unparalleled lawlessness
involved in Germany's crime against Belgium. Her recent note
to Germany in reply to Germany's announced programme of
piracy is couched in a tone of admirable firmness; but it is
written solely in her own interests: she is still silent and utters
no protest against wrongs inflicted on others than herself.
That, of course, is only her official attitude. There is no doubt
that the overwhelming majority of the people of the United
States are, to the core, true to the noblest ideals of Anglo-
Saxon civilization. And that great body of public opinion
may yet compel the Administration to purge away the stain
from the American national honor involved in her official
acquiescence in Belgium's ruin.
But I have referred to this matter because it affords a
most striking illustration of the principle I am discussing
God is never neutral with respect to moral issues. He does
not always unsheath the sword; but He never fails to protest.
That is the great truth of the text: that never in all the world's
history has moral evil shown itself, but God has registered
His protest. No nation, no individual, in all the long range
of history, ever has transgressed the moral law, but the King
of kings has sent an ambassador to protest against it.
If you ask the names of those ministers plenipotentiary, I
reply that nature is one: "For the invisible things of him from
the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood
by the things that are made, even his eternal power and God-
head:so that they are without excuse." Nature bears a moral
witness. Natural law protests against its own violation. Read
the first chapter of Romans from which I have quoted, and you
will see that, in spite of the grossest ignorance, God secures for
54 Revelations of The War
Himself a moral witness not only against physical immorality,
but against intellectual immorality; so that transgressors may
"know the judgment of God, that they which commit such
things are worthy of death." 'We read also that natural men
"Shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their con-
science also bearing witness, and their thoughts meanwhile
accusing or else excusing one another."
Providence also is an ambassador. The riches of the
divine goodness, and forbearance, and long suffering; and the
fact that God does good, and gives us rain from heaven and
fruitful seasons, are attributed to the divine purpose to "leave
not Himself without witness."
To all this must be added the sum of divine revelation, the:
voice of all prophets speaking in unison in Him who was the
Word made flesh; and the inspired record which God has here
given to us of His Son. And, as an interpretation of this
record, you have the voice of Christian experience, the witness
of the whole Church of the Firstborn; as well as the testimony
of all those influences, subsidiary to the Gospel, which have
helped to change the face of the world, and have dated the
world's history from the birth of Christ. Thus all moral influ-
ences are but "broken lights" of the one Light, echoes of the
one Voice; and that the divine protest against all moral evil.
II. But look now at THE JUDICIAL PURPOSE IN THESE:
SUCCESSIVE DIVINE PROTESTS. The doctrine of the text is
that God is preparing, and has from the beginning been pre-
paring, for a great day of reckoning. The blood of all the
prophets is to be "required"; and the successive divine pro-
tests are made with a view to that great judgment. Thus men
are held accountable for the weight of moral testimony they
have ignored or rejected, in agreement with that which is,
written, "This is the condemnation, that light is come into the
world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their
deeds were evil."
Germany and Future Punishment 55
Obesrve then, a nation is given light in preparation for
judgment. Every moral light it has extinguished shall be "re-
quired" of it. And that does not mean that we shall be judged
only for the rejection of distinctively religious knowledge. All
truth is of God. And while our Lord here speaks of God's
having sent "prophets," He mentions "wise men" and "scribes"
too. You must not think of God as a Sunday God, or as being
interested solely in what we regard as "religious" matters. Nor
must we in our thoughts limit the operations of the Spirit of
God to the purely religious realm. God is in everything, and
His hand controls everything; and the "wise men" and
"scribes" who really see and write the truth are His provi-
dential witnesses. In the judgment of moral issues the
"prophets" may be the "expert" witnesses, the "wise men" and
"scribes" the lay witnesses; but they all have their place in the
divine plan, and are preparing men for the day of reckoning.
Let us get that clearly in our minds. The value of re-
ligious testimony is not lessened by the fact that the "wise
man" of science and philosophy, and the "scribe" of literature,
be he poet or novelist, who light a taper in the world's dark-
ness, are all to be summoned to give evidence at the Great
And if this be true, and I think it is involved in my text,
you will see that while a special and awful importance at-
taches to the witness of divine and authoritative revelation;
whatsoever is pure, and honest, and just, and true, and lovely,
in our Christian civilization, is but a ray of that great Light
whose rejection constitutes the condemnation of such as are
Germany boasts of her "culture"; but her culture is her
condemnation. One of her leading men recently said, "Luther,
Goethe, and Kant, are our great assets." And he said well.
Germany has had much light. She has had many prophets and
56 Revelations of The War
wise men and scribes; and the blood of their rejection shall
be required of this generation.
By her failure to protest against Germany's infamous con-
duct, the United States has disqualified herself for a place on
the judgment-seat when the day of reckoning comes. Site
ought to have sent her prophets if she would have a hand in
making inquisition for blood by and by. That principle is
implied in Christ's saying, "The queen of the south shall rise
up in the judgment with the men of this generation, and con-
demn them: for she came from the utmost parts of the earth
to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and behold, a greater than
Solomon is here. The men of Nineveh shall rise up in the
judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: for they
repented at the preaching of Jonas; and behold, a greater than
Jonas is here."
But this rule applies to individuals also. It means that
every ray of moral and spiritual light which comes to us is
either a savour of life unto life, or of death unto death. Every
advantage of birth and education, the possession and develop-
ment of our mental and moral faculties; every good book we
read, every worthy example we observe, every moral influence
we feel; and, above all, every testimony to the fact of Christ,
and the truth of the Gospel which is borne before us; every
exemplification of Christian principle we see, every faithful
sermon we hear, every accusation of conscience we feel, and
every admonition of the Holy Spirit we receive through Scrip-
ture, and providence, and experience; all these are sent us as
God's witnesses against His day of reckoning. And the blood
of every slain prophet will be required of us in that day !
III. Hence the text proclaims THE ACCUMULATED GUILT
INVOLVED IN THE SHEDDING OF RIGHTEOUS BLOOD, whether it
be the blood of principles or of persons, or of both. This is a
terrible word, that the blood of all the prophets shall be re-
quired of him who sheds the blood of the last; for his act
involves the rejection of the accumulated testimony to right-
Germany and Future Punishment 57
eousness of all history. Some of you may remember that a
year or so ago I told you that when Herod, the murderer of
John the Baptist, said of Jesus, "It is John, whom I beheaded,
he is risen from the dead," there was a sense in which he was
instinctively right. Every prophet of righteousness found a
resurrection in Jesus; for He was the sum total of all that
God had said by all other voices to the world. And when
Jesus declared that the blood of all the prophets shed from
the foundation of the world should be required of His gen-
eration, He meant to include His own blood, whose shedding
was the climax of human infamy. And, as I said last Sunday,
the sin of Cain involved the sin of Caiaphas, and of Annas,
and of Judas, and of all the murderers of history; so the deed
of these, with Pontius Pilate, approved of all the evil of the
world. They filled up the measure of their fathers, and bore
witness that they allowed their fathers' deeds, and took upon
themselves their accumulated guilt.
Now carry that forward in application to Germany. It
was no accident that Nietzsche declared that Christianity was
the great curse, the one great spiritual corruption. He was
perfectly logical. It gathers up in itself all those principles
of truth and righteousness for which the slain prophets of
the world have contended. Christ is the great Light, the source
of whatever principles of liberty, and equality, and fraternity,
have found a place in the civilizations of the world. And the
present war is, as has been said, a war between Corsica and
Galilee: it is Antichrist against Christ.
It would be easy to relate innumerable instances of Ger-
man villainy, and thus to stir your emotions. But there is no
time for details, and I have no disposition to appeal to passion.
Let me rather show you, in the light of this text, something
of the heinousness of Germany's offence. What has she done?
Ravaged Belgium and shed the blood of tens of thousands of
others? That is the least of her offences. Her destruction of
the University of Louvain was a symbolic act. With all her
58 Revelations of The War
boasted culture, she has turned her back upon all the lessons
of history, upon all human learning of morals; and, by her
attempted conquest of Europe, she has taken upon herself the
guilt of the blood of all who have died in the cause of freedom
from the foundation of the world; she has entered into league
with the spirit of every despot whose ambition ever cursed
And it was significant that works of art should fall a prey
to her destructive power; for she has allied herself with every
influence which has marred the handiwork of God, and would
banish the beautiful from the earth. Her destruction of places
of worship, too, was symbolic; for her conduct is the antithesis
of worship, a repudiation of all morality, and a mockery of
all those principles for which martyrs have bled and died. The
war involves, I say, the repudiation of Christianity, a second
crucifixion of Christ, an attempt to banish the principles of
which He is the incarnation from the earth. According to
my text you must add to the Kaiser's guilt for the shedding
of blood to-day, the guilt involved in all the blood which has
been shed in the course of civil and religious freedom since the
world was made. And that blood will be required at the
IV. You will see therefore that this text prophesies ONE
RULE OF JUDGMENT AT THE GREAT ASSIZE.
If moral acts have such far-reaching results, if they touch
the eternities, does anyone contend that retribution can be
exacted in time? What is involved in expiating the guilt
incurred in the shedding of the blood of all the prophets who
have.died for righteousness' sake? Can you measure the guilt
of that purpose which would blot out the record of all human
progress, whose science would obliterate Calvary, and blow
Sinai into the sea, and undo all the work of righteousness from
Abel until now? The bloody fields of Belgium and Poland
are witness enough, but when I remember that in that blood
Germanism slays afresh all other millions who have died in
Germany and Future Punishment 59
freedom's cause; and seeks afresh the annihilation of all the
earthly results of the death of Christ, I say if there is not a hell
there ought to be! I could conceive of no moral order in the
universe, if Germany's sin could go unpunished. No; England,
and France, and Russia, do as they may, can never punish
Germany; but "Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the
Lord." Yes, there will be a day of reckoning; and they who
are responsible for this wholesale murder will surely be made
to pay. Let us not be foolish or superficial. A moral act is
not ephemeral in its reach and influence, but eternal. It reaches
forth into the future: either upward into heaven, or downward
What has this to do with us? We have shed no blood,
I hope? Know ye not that Christ is God's last word to men,
the last of all that long line of prophets of whom Abel was the
first? You are not a very great sinner. You have not sinned
in any flagrant way—outwardly at least. That may be, though
in some cases it is far otherwise. But in any case the germ of
all evil is within. The sin which comprehends all other sins
is there. And that is unbelief; that rejects Christ; and with
Him all prophets who have gone before, and every voice which
ever has spoken for God. Do you see what the rejection of
Christ involves? And do you see what must follow? By the
principle of this text, all the profit of His blood flows to him
who repents of and renounces the sin that slew Him; while
on the other hand, he shares the guilt of those who nailed
Him there whose unbelief allows their wicked deed. God will
require a redeemed soul of the blood of Christ; or He will
require the blood of Christ of the soul rejecting its cleansing.
"He that believeth on Him is not condemned: he that believeth
not is condemned already, because he hath not believed on
the name of the only begotten Son of God." For every one
of us, as a just Judge is on His throne, the blood of Christ.
means heaven, or hell!
"The danger to this country would cease to he prob-
lematical, if the crown should ever descend to a
prince, whose apparent simplicity might throw his
subjects off their guard,—who might be no libertine in
behaviour,—who should have no sense of honour to
restrain him, and who, with just religion enough to
impose upon the multitude, might have no scruples of
conscience to interfere with his morality. With these
honourable qualifications, and the decisive advantage
of situation, low craft and falsehood are all the abili-
ties that are wanting to destroy the wisdom of the
ages, and to deface the noblest monument that human
policy has erected—I know such a man;—My Lord, I
know you both: and with the blessing of God (for I
too am religious), the people of England shall know
you as well as I do.
* * * * *
* * * * But there are
some sensations which find no entrance into a barbar-
ous, contracted heart. In some men, there is a malig-
nant passion to destroy the works of genius, literature,
and freedom. The Vandal and the monk find equal
gratification in it.
"Reflections like these, my Lord, have a general
relation to your Grace, and inseparably attend you, in
whatever company or situation your character occurs
Junius, to His Grace the Duke of Grafton.
THE KAISER AND BEELZEBUB.
"Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of
"Put on the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to stand
against the wiles of the devil.
"For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against prin-
cipalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this
world, against spiritual wickedness in high places."—Eph. 6:10-12.
It is easy to be wise concerning our yesterdays. When
the fire has come down from heaven, those who before halted
between two opinions would fain persuade themselves and
others that they never really believed in Baal. After Lord
Roberts' death it was frequently mentioned to the credit of his
generous spirit, that, although he had long warned England of
her danger, he never once said, after the outbreak of war,
"I told you so." And his silence in this respect was worthy
of his brave and unselfish record. And yet we must be careful
lest we fail to see the folly of yesterday's mistakes in the light
of the wisdom learned in the experience of to-day. Conscience
and the Spirit of God are faithful to our highest interests when
they whisper, as they do so often, "I told you so."
This is my sixth sermon on "Revelations of the War."
The war has taught us all many things. In some directions
it has corrected opinions previously held, and in others it has
served only to deepen convictions already profoundly felt.
And it is having this effect upon most thoughtful people: it is
compelling them to look beneath the superficial conditions of
62 Revelations of The War
life to an examination of the principles by which these con-
ditions are sustained. All categories of human thought have
-taken on a new interest; and all the world is forming itself
into a jury to hold an inquest to determine if possible where
lies the responsibility for history's greatest crime.
The pacificists continue to discourse on the folly and
wickedness of the maxim, "In times of peace prepare for war";
and the non-pacificists, who are by no means necessarily mili-
-tarists, congratulate each other that the counsels of pacificism
were not sufficiently influential to stop the building of British
battleships. I have never been able to admire, and I have
sometimes found difficulty in respecting, the public man whose
office requires that he should accept the responsibility of trying
to mould public opinion, and who yet evades that responsibility
by assuming an attitude of neutrality toward public questions.
As to this pulpit, I think I may venture to say, that, while you
may not always agree with the preacher, you are generally
given a fair idea of where he stands, and of what he believes.
Therefore I must tell you plainly that I am not now and
never have been a pacificist. In respect to my British citizen-
ship, the perpetual clanking of the Kaiser's sword forbade the
intellectual somnolence essential to sweet dreams of peace; and
in respect to those deeper considerations which concern the
prime source of all human envy, and jealousy, and strife, I
never have been able, and am not now able, to see how war
can be banished from the earth while anywhere in the universe
"the strong man armed keepeth his palace." The Kaiser and
Beelzebub, and they are not unrelated, forbid my crossing out
of my Bible this word of Him with Whom they both are at
war, "And he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and
I shall speak of the personality of our arch enemy, of the
pomer of his army, and of the only panoply which can enable
us to stand against him in the evil day.
The Kaiser and Beelzebub 63
I. The Bible teaches that the source of all moral evil is
A MALEVOLENT PERSONALITY. He is called by many names,
"Satan," "Beelzebub," "the adversary," "the accuser of the
brethren," "the prince of this world," "the prince of the power
of the air," "the strong man armed," "the god of this world,"
"the angel of the bottomless pit," "Abaddon," "Apollyon,"
"Belial," "the great red dragon," "the old serpent," "the devil,"
and by many other names. All the attributes of personality,—
consciousness, character, will, are, in the Bible, ascribed to
Satan. And that is taught in the particular text before us.
While our spiritual foes are described in the plural as prin-
cipalities, and powers, and the rulers of the darkness of this
world; yet they are all assumed to be subject to the control of
one superior master spirit, and all their machinations are char-
acterized as "the wiles of the devil."
No one is foolish enough to suppose that Prussianism
originated in an impersonal source, or that its present bloody
programme has been matured and executed without the super-
vision of some dominant personality. In I870 it was Bismarck.
And even he was a composite of many. But it was only when
the ideas and principles of others had been absorbed and
assimilated by him, and fused into one purpose by his master
will, that modern Germany came into being. And since that
mighty pilot called Bismarck was dropped, who has navigated
the German ship of state? Again I say, the Germany of
1914-15 is a composite. Many minds have contributed to the
-present national programme. I have spoken on another
occasion of the deadly character of certain principles of
German philosophy, and have warned you of the deadly
potency of abstract ideas. But how is the moral potential
involved in an idea, transformed into a kinetic force' Per-
sonality is the transforming agency which conveits a phil-
osophic principle into a vital force; which makes a man into
a soldier; a mob into an army; a nation into a mighty engine
64 Revelations of The War
of dectrutcion. And I do not think you can account for the
present war apart from the Kaiser and Kaiserism. He has.
declared that there shall be but one will in Germany, and that
will his own.
And the evil of the world can be accounted for only on
the same principle. Satan is more than a religious philosophical
abstraction. There is surely no escape from that conclusion
for those who accept the authority of Scripture; for nothing
is more plainly taught than that as the first Adam was defeated
by that malevolent spirit; the second Adam, like David con-
tending with Goliath, came expressly to conquer him: "For
this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might
destroy the works of the devil."
"The devil is voted not to be,
And of course the thing is true,
But who is doing the terrible work
The devil alone should do?
Who dogs the steps of the toiling saint?
Who digs the pits for his feet?
Who sows the tares in the fields of time
Wherever God sows the wheat?
"And who is mixing the terrible draught
That palsies the heart and brain?
Who loads the bier of each passing year
With ten hundred thousand slain?
Who blights the bloom of the earth to-day
With the fiery breath of hell?
If the devil is not, and never was,
Won't someone arise and tell?
"Won't somebody step to the front forthwith
And make his bow, and show
How the frauds and crimes of a single day
Spring up? We should like to know!
The devil is voted not to be,
And of course the devil is gone;
But simple people would like to know,
Who carries his business on."
The Kaiser and Beelzebub 65
But the devil is not yet gone; or, if he were, I do not
know how such a monster as the Kaiser is to be accounted for.
The only satisfactory explanation of such a mad and blood-
costly ambition as the Kaiser's is found in the Biblical doctrine
of a personal devil.
I think too, there is abundant evidence of the operation
in human affairs of a master mind which loves darkness. Ger-
many has professedly been calling for light for many years.
She has loudly professed her love for the truth. All her
schools and universities she has regarded as lights shining in
a dark place. Her scholars professed a passion for the truth.
Nothing was to be accepted as true until it was proved. Old
theories of life must be abandoned. Nothing must be allowed
to escape her searching scrutiny. Even the Bible must no
longer be taken for granted. The truth must be known at all
costs. But after all this loud profession, did the sun ever
look upon a land more afraid of the truth than Germany?
It would appear from all reports that Germany is a united
Germany. But no one will deny that Germany has given to
the world some of the noblest Christians who ever blessed the
sons of men. And to me it seems incredible that German
Christians, and Germans of high moral character who may
not bear the Christian name, should approve of the German
conduct of this war. I am of the opinion that it will yet
transpire that the nation has been kept in darkness with respect
to the real causes and conduct of the war. It is conceivable
that one man, consumed with ambition, should lead others into
such a conflict; but that a whole nation should deliberately
embark upon a campaign of plunder and bloodshed seems
beyond belief. The only explanation is, that official, govern-
mental, Germany, has systematically blinded the minds of her
people to the truth.
At all events, falsehood is the devil's favorite weapon.
He professes to walk in the light; he affects a love for the
66 Revelations of The War
truth. But such lights as he kindles are the lights of wreckers
on a rocky coast. He is at home only in the darkness: "When
he speaketh a lie he speaketh of his own, for he is a liar, and
the father of it."
Human nature is bad enough. "The mind :of the flesh"
has a terrible capacity for evil. But for the source of all the
world's sin, and sorrow, and suffering, you must look beyond
human nature. I hold that the course of human history cannot
be explained apart from the theory of a personal devil whose
will is implacably set against all goodness, and righteousness,
and truth. There may be some here before whose eyes there
is little real fear of God. You are even unmoved by the spec-
tacle of a crucified Christ:
"See, from His head, His hands, His feet,
Sorrow and love flow mingled down;
Did e'er such love and sorrow meet,
Or thorns compose so rich a crown?"
What! You say you cannot see that sight? You have
no knowledge of that outrage? And this is why, "If our gos-
pel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: in whom the God
of this world hath blinded the minds of them that believe not,
lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image
of God, should shine unto them."
The Kaiser's religious professions are illustrative of a
great truth. Religion is the devil's special sphere. The first
temptation to evil which he whispered in a human ear had
to do with the name and the word of God. It would appear
that the first time the name of God was mentioned to our first
parents it was spoken by the devil. Like the Kaiser, invariably
he has claimed divine authority for his most evil deeds. He
had the effrontery to meet the Son of God Himself on that
plane; and he has ever accomplished his deadliest work in the
guise and through the instrumentality of religion.
The Kaiser and Beelzebub 67
The worst devil of all is belief in no devil at all; and next
to that, is the devil in his favorite disguise as an angel of light.
The Kaiser was never more dangerous than when he took to
preaching, and posed as the guardian of the world's peace.
The one element of comfort in this review of this sinister
character consists in the evidence of his own short-sightedness.
We read of the wisdom of the serpent. And we know to our
sorrow something of the deceitfulness of sin and of the cun-
ning of Satan. His subtlety transcends alike our experience
and our understanding. But he cannot see far in advance.
All through history you find him doing what Haman did, forg-
ing weapons for his own undoing. His biggest blunder was
the cross of Christ. That was really, potentially, the devil's
Waterloo. His biggest modern blunder, perhaps, is the Kaiser.
Doomed to destruction himself, Satan would involve the whole
world in his ruin.
Have you observed that sin is the most irrational thing
in the world? It always goes off at a gallop in the direction of
the precipice. We should have expected German statesman-
ship to have evinced great intellectual strength. It might have
been expected that German diplomacy would have displayed
the very quintessence of wisdom. But what have we found?
When German spokesmen, such as Bernstorff and Bethman-
Hollweg, have spoken, we have at first refused to believe them
responsible for the words attributed to them. Their apologies
have been so utterly stupid it has seemed impossible that men
in responsible positions could talk such nonsense. But the
devil, with all his subtlety, is only a "dunderhead" after all;
and they are dunderheads who follow him, and who are led
captive by him at his will. While literal history, the story of
the expulsion of the legion of devils is a parable too: the herd
of swine went violently down a steep place into the sea and
were choked. The Kaiser follows well his master in hurling
His millions against impregnable positions. Oh, my brother!
68 Revelations of The War
Sin is the stupidest thing in the world. It leads to inevitable
destruction: it commits suicide.
II. But now for a few moments let us think of THE
POWER OF THE ARMY of this wicked prince. We read of "the
devil" and of "principalities and powers." The devil is not
omnipresent, but evil is nearly so. You have here the idea of
an evil confederacy in the heavenly places.
There are principalities of evil, communities of spirits,
rulers of this darkness." They are in a state of perpetual war,
at war with the light and the children of light. And the will
of these evil principalities, and powers, and world rulers, is
executed by the spiritual host of wickedness in the heavenly
places. And all these hosts, with their world rulers and princes,
are subject to the will and direction of their Kaiser, the devil
himself. This is not superstition: this is the word of divine
You will observe then that there is order and discipline,
and a high state of efficiency for evil in these realms of wicked
spirits. There is a not incomplete analogy between the Kaiser
and his army and the devil and his disciplined hosts. The
spiritual warfare in which we are engaged is not conducted
in any haphazard way by the enemy. Lord Kitchener, recog-
nizing the thorough training of the German armies, has in-
sisted that British success depends upon meeting discipline with
discipline. Hence the long course of training of our men on
Salisbury Plains. Let us be under no misapprehension. The
principalities and powers with whom we wrestle are under
such skilled leadership it is ever a serious business when the
battle is set in array. As the Kaiser moves about among his
armies, now on the west front, now at Heligoland, and again
on the east front, so Satan directs his forces of evil in the
There is a unity of plan and purpose observable in the
enemies operations in this warfare. Bernhardi complained bit-
The Kaiser and Beelzebub 69
terly at the apparent want of unity among the various German
states before the war. But they are united now. Pilate and
Herod are made friends by their common hatred of Incarnate
Righteousness. Put your hand to any work of reform, in
your own heart and life, in your own city and nation. What
do you find? Pilate and Herod have not seemed to care.
You think you can count on the neutrality of one or the other.
The saloon-keeper had a law-suit with the manager of a low
theatre which needs cleaning out, and both are on bad terms
each under the rulership of a prince, like the different states
of the German Empire. And these are described as "the world
with a certain newspaper that is no friend of moral reformers;
and you think you can drive a wedge between them, and take
advantage of their mutual antagonisms, and accomplish the
reform of at least one of these places. Try it! Train your
guns upon any point of the enemy's line; attack in force any
one of his seemingly ill-defended outposts. What do you find?
There is absolute unity of purpose. Reinforcements are rushed
from all quarters. Pilate and Herod stand together, and all
hell is entrenched about them. Or here is an individual case.
A man was subject to all manner of temptations. When he
was in New York, or Chicago, or was it in London, or Man-
chester, or Glasgow? But wherever it was, the devil seemed
to have a special grudge against him, and to turn several army
corps loose upon him—as the Kaiser did upon General French's
"contemptible little army." And he made a strategic retire-
ment. He came to Toronto. "I shall find a shelter there,"
he said, "and perhaps a weak spot in the enemy's line where
I can break through." Have you found it? Ah, no! The
fight has been hotter in Toronto than anywhere else. And
so it will be, my friend. I tell you the strong man armed
keepeth his palace and his goods are in peace. The mobility
of his army is marvellous, and there is no hope of outman-
oeuvering his flying hosts.
70 Revelations of The War
And furthermore, though among these hosts of spiritual
foes there is order and discipline, their campaigns are waged
with absolute lawlessness. The whole confederacy of evil
states is in rebellion against the King: it is a war of lawless-
ness: "Sin is lawlessness." There is no law can bind the
devil, as there is no law apparently that can control the Kaiser.
No; Germany is not absolutely without precedent for her
methods of warfare: she is fighting in the devil's own way.
With him women and children are lawful prey. He has no
pity upon the wounded or the dying. He respects no one's
neutrality. He spares neither universities, churches nor hos-
pitals. He is at war with all that go down to the sea in ships,
irrespective of the flag they fly or the cargo they carry. He
has no regard for the Red Cross! No; the Cross is the target
of his special hate; and his fiery darts are dipped in special
poison for all who turn their eyes thereto, or flee for salvation
to its protection.
That is the foe we do battle with. Alas, that any ruler
of the world should provide in his own person and kingdom
so complete an analogy to the merciless warfare waged against
all human kind by the devil and his hosts.
III. THE ONLY PANOPLY by which we can withstand the
onslaught of such a foe ought now to be a consideration of
Must we understand him? Can we not come to terms and
put an end to strife? Herein is where I am bound to disagree
with the doctrines of pacificism. Is it wrong to prepare for
war? Does anyone suppose that any lessening of preparation
on Britain's part would have changed the Kaiser's heart? If
we had stopped building ships, would the Kaiser have put aside
his ambition for world-power? I heard a discussion on this
subject in the British House of Commons. A member made
a speech in which he lamented the growing expenditures on
armaments. The Right Hen. Mr. Lloyd George replied for
The Kaiser and Beelzebub 71
the Government. He expressed appreciation of the honorable
member's noble sentiments and deeply regretted the necessity
for such expenditures for such a purpose; but, he said, His
Majesty's Government, charged with the responsibility of
maintaining the security and inviolability of His Majesty's
dominions, dare not agree to any curtailment of expenditure.
Why? Because he knew, and the Government knew,
The British Weekly quotes Mr. Carnegie from the New
York Times in these words:
"One of the most curious documents issued throughout the
war is an interview with Mr. Andrew Carnegie, published in
the New York Times. Mr. Carnegie expresses the opinion
that the German Emperor has been forced into war against
his will and judgment by the military aristocracy of his coun-
try. Asked what he would do in the event of an invasion,
Mr. Carnegie denounced the provision of a naval and military
force in America. He would welcome an invading army of
Germans. "I myself should wish to be invited to advance and
meet invading forces if they came. I would approach them
without any weapons on my person. I would not shoot at
them; I would make a speech to them. 'Gentlemen,' I would
say,'here is the chance of your life to win life's chief prize.
... You have the opportunity to become citizen kings. We
are all kings here. Here the least of you can take a rank
much higher than that of any general in your army. He can
become a sovereign in a republic.' I think they would hurrah
for me, not harm me, after they had heard my speech."
I should like to hear that speech, but at a safe distance:
and as one of a million men well armed!
You cannot reason with a mad dog. Eloquence is wasted
on a tiger from the jungle. The only effective argument is a
gun of the largest possible calibre, an army of the maximum
72 Revelations of The War
Oh, we all have failed here. We have argued with the
devil: we have made speeches to principalities and powers!
Young men, you have parleyed with the wolves of hell, with
the devil's dogs of war. You have thought to match the devil
with diplomacy! Your only safety is in fighting!
In this moral and spiritual warfare Paul was no pacificist.
He did not recommend disarmament. He said, "Put on the
whole armor of God that ye may be able to stand against the
wiles of the devil." There is no other way.
And now let me enlist you for this war. I tell you, you
must be trained, and disciplined, and armed, to the highest pos-
sible state of military effectiveness. What is the panoply, the
whole armor? What are its elements? Truth, righteousness,
preparation of the gospel of peace, faith, the helmet of salva-
tion, the sword of the spirit, all-prayer. But where are all
these elements to be found? I give it you in one word, "Be
strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might." As all
abstract principles of evil potential become mighty when trans-
formed and transmuted into personality, so do all principles
of righteousness, and truth, and faith, become invincible when
We breathed freely when we knew Kitchener had taken
charge of the War Office. Now it was no longer British
ideals and British honor in solution in the mass, but incarnate
in one great personality; and we said, it is Kitchener against
the Kaiser now, and we shall see.
That is the principle of salvation. Salvation, in a Person,
and He, the Man Christ Jesus. He is thy panoply, O man.
Take Christ and He will clothe you with Himself, His right-
eousness, and truth, and peace, and faith. The strong man
armed keepeth his palace and his goods are in peace only until
a stronger than he cometh upon him. Satan has beaten every-
body but Christ. He is our only hope in this war. “Thanks
be to God, who giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus
“Nature in her grave nobleness is not less, but more
dear now, when I remember that I shall soon bid her
good even, to enter into the presence of her Lord and
mine. New heavens and a new earth—I cannot sever
my human heart from mine own land: and who shall
say that those noble countries, casting off all impurity
in the fiery trial that awaits them, shall not be our
"I love to think that it may be so: I love to think
that the Lord, in His humanity, looks tenderly upon
the mortal soil on which He sojourned in His wondrous
life, and that hers, perchance, in these very lands,
made holy by His grace and power, our final rest shall
be. It may be but a fancy; but it comes upon me
with gentle might, like the whispered comfort of an
angel. A new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness—
a glorified humanity which, remaining human, is mor-
tal no longer! with the iudgment and the condemna-
tion and the wars of the Lord overpast, and the earth
and the heavens one fair, broad country, and Himself
over all, blessed for ever!"
THE WAR AND DIVINE SOVEREIGNTY.
"Jesus answered, Thou couldest have no power at all against me,
except it were given thee from above: therefore he that delivered me
unto thee hath the greater sin."—John 19: 11.
"Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowl-
edge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and
slain: Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death:
because it was not possible that he should be holden of it."—Acts
During the past six months we have become accustomed
to the use of superlatives in descriptions of the war. With
respect to the nations involved, the size of the armies engaged,
the number and striking power of the ships, the destructiveness
of the modern weapons employed on land; the new factors
introduced, such as aircraft and submarines; the lawlessness
of the foe, and the consequent obviousness of the moral issues
involved; in all these respects the war is said to be "unpar-
alleled" and "unprecedented." But there is a sense in which
there can now be no conflict of moral opposites, however ex-
tensive the field, however mighty the forces engaged, and how-
ever ruthlessly and even lawlessly the war is waged, which is
without precedent. Every Naseby, and Trafalgar, and Water-
loo, and Gettysburg, was involved in Golgotha. While to the
natural view Calvary seems to be local, and to belong to a
fixed point of time, regarded in the light of its spiritual sig-
nificance, and considering the principalities and powers which-
wrestled for the mastery at "the place of a skull," that typical
76 Revelations of The War
death's head germinally involved all the battles of the ages
from the dawn of time to the Judgment Day.
There is no interest of human life, no paradox, no prob-
lem, no mystery, which is not understandable at the Cross. It
is perfectly true that the Cross is the ground of the individual
sinner's hope, and the Crucified is the individual believer's
Saviour; but the Cross and the Resurrection together, "the
Lamb as it has been slain," is the divine answer to universal
The present war, like every other controversy of history,
involves a question of authority. That will bear thinking
about; but I believe you will find that the further you press
your inquiry, the more clear will it appear that a question of
authority will always be found to lie somewhere at the root
of all human strife, whether individual or national. The
Kaiser believes it is his divine right to exercise authority over
men, and to extend that authority over other nations than his
own. The German army and navy have been prepared to
enforce that authority. Belgium, and France, and Russia, and
Serbia, and Great Britain, are at war to resist German authority.
Thoughtful persons will soon discover that the matter of
the legitimacy of human authority abounds with difficulty.
That is why you must be careful, when you buy a piece of
property, to see that there is no flaw in the title. Otherwise
you may have no authority over that which you have pur-
chased. The maps of the world are changed as the areas of
authority of certain governments are enlarged or reduced.
And as you ponder this question you will see that there is no
consideration of greater importance than the enquiry, What is
the ultimate law? Whose is the supreme will? In whom does
the ultimate, absolute, sovereign, authority reside?
The War and Divine Sovereignty 77
Upon the correctness of the answer to that question the
soundness of all theology, the true interpretation of all history,
and the rational explanation of all human experience, depend.
That is why, I may freely confess, I am what is called a
Calvinist. For fundamental to that system of theology, and
to that philosophy of life, is the doctrine of divine sovereignty,
which assumes that God is absolute in all realms.
Whoever understands and accepts that truth will not find
his faith shaken by the war. He will not discuss the silly
question, Is Christianity a failure? For, to him, Christianity
is Christ, and Christ is God, and God never fails. We may
not be able to see very far; he may, indeed, experience much
darkness, but a sovereign King forbids the harboring of
Standing before Pilate, Jesus gave no answer to some of
his questions; and Pilate marvelled at His silence, and said,.
"Speakest Thou not unto me? Knowest Thou not that I have
power (or authority) to crucify Thee, and have authority to
release Thee?" And then Jesus went to the heart of this whole
matter. He told the governor that all human authority was
delegated authority, and that he had no authority but that
which was given him from above.
And it is no more difficult to find God in this war than in
the tragedy of the Cross. This modern paradox is not greater
than that of ancient story. You will find in the verses before
us a battle of wills, a conflict of Motives, and a difference of
achievement, and in all God is shown to be sovereignly supreme.
I. Here is A CONE'LICT OF AUTHORITIES, or a battle of
wills. Authority implies power, legal, moral, or physical, power
to enforce its decrees. And Pilate claimed to have such author-
ity over Jesus: that his will would determine whether He
should be crucified or released. And Jesus admitted his claim.
But He told Pilate something of which he had never dreamed,
78 Revelations of The War
and which made him only the more uneasy. He said, in effect,
that back of the imperial decree which gave him his judicial
authority, and back of the Roman state with all that it implied
and symbolized, there was a Higher Authority without Whose
sanction the highest earthly potentate was powerless.
Moreover, Jesus tacitly acknowledges that, subject to
divine sanction, the state is clothed with certain authority; and
such acknowledgment was in harmony with His explicit teach-
ing, "Render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's."
Whatever may be said of the personal rights of kings, there is
no doubt that the collective human interests represented in the
state have a certain divine right of authority over the indi-
vidual. Jesus did not dispute it.
And I think we may discern in these words a recognition
of the authority of the individual will of Pilate. He was not,
in relation to the state, a mere automaton. He was permitted
certain discretionary powers. Nor was he merely a puppet
in relation to the power from above; for in the exercise of his
authority Christ recognized that he was morally responsible for
his acts: his act was not sinless, though another's was "the
Observe, also, Christ distinguished between the will whose
sanction would determine His crucifixion, and the will by which
He was "delivered" to be crucified. In its human instrumen-
tality that will was a composite. There was the collective will
of the priestly party, of Caiaphas and Annas, of organized and
established religion, of the trained intellectualism of the day.
And there was the participation of Judas, by whose treachery
Jesus was "delivered" to the chief priests. Of him it is said,
"The devil having put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon's
son, to betray Him"; and again, an hour or so later, "Satan
entered into him."
The War and Divine Sovereignty 79
You have therefore the Satanic will mastering the will of
Judas and expressing itself through Judas. The same malign
influence is at work upon the chief priests, and through them
working his will upon the multitude, and thus bending the will
of Pilate, and through him making use of the authority of
the state. Thus you see the will of Satan controlling the will
of unregenerate human nature,—Judas, the chief priests, the
multitude, the false witnesses, and Pilate himself; and so
utilizing for his own ends the powers of this world as repre-
sented in the authority of Caesar.
On the other hand you have the federal Head of a new,
race, the second Adam. He is the incarnation of righteous-
ness, and goodness, and truth, and of everything to which
Satan and his subjects are opposed. And for the present these
powers of evil have authority over righteousness, and good-
ness, and truth ! Much more than "civilization" was at stake:
the world's redemption was at stake. And all the powers of
the world were united against Christ.
Now put yourself in the position of the disciples of Christ.
They have been thrilled by His gracious words; some have had
their eyes opened; others who were lame have been made to
walk; not a few tongues who speak His praise, until He came
to them were dumb; and some whose flesh is clean as a little
child's were loathsome lepers till He touched them; and some
had come back from the grave at His call. When Jesus hung
upon the Cross, what view had they of God's government of
things? Faith must have staggered, and reason, too, at such
a sight. Each must have said, "I cannot understand a God
who allows evil to triumph over Him, and nail Him to a
Yet Jesus Himself asserted that all these wills, primarily
and chiefly that of Satan, and then of Judas, and the priests,
and the multitude, and Pilate; having no sympathy with each
80 Revelations of The War
other, opposed to each other in many respects, and opposed
to the divine will in every respect, were yet unconsciously
working together in concert in subservience to the one only
sovereign Authority from above.
Does that throw any light upon our present perplexity?
Hundreds of millions of people at war, expressing their wills
more or less effectually through ten different governments
representing ten different political systems. It is a frightful
spectacle, and in it all, righteousness, and goodness, and truth
appear crucified afresh. But above all the din of battle I can
hear a Voice, in answer to the boasts of the mighty, speaking
for Belgium, and for the representatives of righteousness the
world over, "Thou couldst have no power at all against me,.
except it were given thee from above."
As all these wills in conflict with each other, and each,
working its own pleasure, were yet divinely and sovereignly
compelled to co-operate, and bring to pass God's holy will
when Jesus cried, "It is finished," and bowed His head and
died; so on the bloody fields of Europe to-day, without viola-
tion of the freedom of the human will, or cancellation of
responsibility, God is sovereignly subjecting all authority to
His own, and working out His own designs.
II. But you may see a further paradox here, CONFLICT-
ING MOTIVES WORKING TOWARD THE SAME END.
You have Kaiserism at the Cross. This Man had been
offered all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them,
if He would acknowledge subjection to Satan, and fall
down and worship Him. "World-power" and more was
Satan's ambition from the beginning. And because this won-
drous Man refused to submit to Satanic authority, He is
crucified—as Belgium has been for a similar reason. The
spirit of the Kaiser is not a new thing under the sun. Na-
poleon was similarly possessed. And so was Charlemagne,
The War and Divine Sovereignty 81
and the Caesars, and Alexander, and Nebuchadnezzar, and
Ahab, and Pharaoh, and Chedorlaomer, and ten thousand
others. They came under the spell of that spirit who claims
authority over all the kingdoms of the world and the glory of
them. The spirit of modern Germany is a very ancient
aspirant to universal dominion. The motive of worldly am-
bition was a very influential factor in bringing Jesus to the
Cross, as it now is, in bringing the nations to fields of blood.
Then, too, there was the motive of covetousness, greed
of gain, an immoral commercialism. Judas said to the chief
priests, "What will ye give me?" We read that, "He was a
thief, and kept the bag, and bare what was put therein." And
that unworthy, that contemptible motive played an important
part in the erection of the Cross. And it has something to do
with most crucifixions. Ahab's covetous desire for Naboth's
vineyard invariably has had some part in the shedding of blood
wherever it has flowed.
Somebody says the war was not due primarily to German
ambition for world power, politically and governmentally; but
that she wanted room for commercial expansion. She cher-
ished no grudge against Belgium, she merely wanted Antwerp
for a sea-port to facilitate her overseas commerce. Let it all
be granted, what then? It is only a repetition of history. It
is Satan entering into Judas, and bidding him ask, "What
will ye give me'" There is no doubt that that motive has
reddened the fields of Europe as it reddened the hill of Calvary.
But what motive do you discern beneath the intellectual and
religious "culture" of Pharisaism in particular and of Judaism
in general? You must study your gospels to answer that ques-
tion. Doubtless there was an element of jealousy engendered
by His growing popularity, in which they saw their own influ-
ence threatened. But there was something deeper than that.
Do you remember how the Scribes and Pharisees brought to
82 Revelations of The War
Him a woman who had been taken in adultery? They quoted
the Mosaic statute governing such cases, and asked if He also
approved of her being stoned. And He replied, "He that is
without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her."
"And they which heard it, being convicted by their own con-
science, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto
the last. And Jesus was left alone. and the woman standing
in the midst." And that was typical of all His teaching. His
sharp arrows pierced their armor of superficial morality. He
called them "whited sepulchres," and "serpents," and "vipers";
and their attitude was a revolt against His teachings, and
against the life of holiness He lived, and the ministry of tender
compassion for the sinful, and weak, and wounded, He exer-
cised. So that you may discern among the motives preparing
the way for the Cross, the revolt of the carnal mind against the
requirements of the spiritual law.
And a motive closely akin to this may be observed in
operation in this war. The boasted German "culture" involves
the elimination of the moral element from human thinking.
Though it may sound a little like "I told you so," I am bound
to confess that I have long believed that German critics of the
Bible were not intellectually honest, that their antagonism
toward the written word was dictated by motives similar to
those which inspired the Pharisees to conspire to crucify the
Word Incarnate; they were moved by a moral bias against the
principles which Christ exemplified, and which the Bible pro-
claims. At all events, certain of Germany's intellectual idols
have not feared to say that a civilization woven of Christian
principles is incompatible with German advancement. Nietz-
sche's philosophy involved the repudiation of all conventional
morality, and the glorification of the carnal mind. He was a
voice crying against Christ, and saying, "Let us break His
bands asunder, and cast away His cords from us." The famous
"scrap of paper" incident was the logical expression of this
The War and Divine Sovereignty 83
mental attitude. The motives consisting in a desire to extend
Pharisaic culture and German culture are not unrelated to the
native antagonism of the carnal mind toward all moral restric-
But what was the motive of the multitudes? What motive
actuates seventy millions of Germans in this war? Surely
many must be free from motives of ambition, and greed, and
opposition to righteousness, such as I have described. In this
ancient tragedy the multitudes were ignorant of the issues
involved. Their prejudices were played upon, and their pas-
sion inflamed by the hypocritical representations of their lead-
ers. And undoubtedly the rage of the German nation is to be
similarly accounted for. Their Kaiser has blinded their minds,
lest the light of the knowledge of the facts of the case should
shine unto them.
And then there is Pilate, moved by political motives; he
strives to maintain a position of neutrality. He mildly scolds
both sides; and while convinced of the iniquity of the proposal
to crucify Christ, while knowing that for envy His enemies
had delivered Him up, he lacks both the wisdom and the
courage to declare himself. Instead, he orders water, and
washes his hands in the waters of neutrality, and declares that
he is innocent of the blood of this just Person! And right-
eousness, and goodness, and truth, Incarnate, hangs there upon
a cross, bleeding, dying, crowned with thorns ! And President
Pilate is neutral!
And the motive and spirit represented in Pilate have their
counterparts in this war. I cannot understand such neutrality.
Where moral issues are concerned no man or nation can be
neutral without suffering a deterioration in moral character
for which there can be no material compensation. The sacrifice
of moral principle to political expediency by the individual or
the nation is the first step in the direction of moral bankruptcy.
84 Revelations of The War
How different from all these was the motive of Jesus. He
came to preach good tidings unto the meek, to bind up the
broken hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the
opening of the prison to them that are bound; and, in the
accomplishment of this, to give His life a ransom for many.
And Jesus knew that while the motive of hate moved the
wills that delivered Him up; and self-interest forbade the
political Pilate to take sides with Him and with righteousness;
the higher sovereign Authority was moved by a motive com-
pounded of mercy and truth and righteousness and peace.
Thus it was Love not Hate which triumphed at the Cross!
For your comfort, I counsel you in these tragic days to
read your gospels again, and study well the record of the Cross
and Passion of our Lord. Observe the silence of all voices
which might have told of the virtue which had flowed from
Him of the seamless robe. How one-sided was the evidence!
Not one voice was heard on His side. How dark was the day
when Jesus died! The world never has been wrapped in such
darkness from then until now: nor was such darkness known
before. And yet though it was too dark for men to see what
was being done, it was not too dark for God to work! They
parted His garments among them, and for His vesture they
cast lots. They gave Him gall for His meat, and in His thirst
they gave Him vinegar to drink. They crucified Him between
two thieves, and numbered Him with the transgressors. They
refrained from breaking His bones; but they drove a spear into
His side, and looked on him whom they had pierced. His
body was surrendered to Joseph; and thus He was with the
rich in His death. And all these things were done on the
world's darkest day, "that the Scripture might be fulfilled";
and all conflicting motives were sovereignly over-ruled, and
God had His way; for darkness and light are both alike to Him.
And the same mighty forces are at work to-day as then.
They are differently clothed, and differently named; but in
The War and Divine Sovereignty 85
their essential nature they are the same. Only let us remem-
ber that God is not blinded by darkness; He is not daunted
by human and Satanic confederacies. And though jealousy
is still cruel as the grave, there is a Love which the many
waters of all the springs of evil cannot quench.
III. And now we may see WHAT A DIFFERENCE OF
ACHIEVEMENT is recorded to the credit of these opposing wills
and conflicting motives.
On the one side there was a treasuring up of wrath
against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judg-
ment of God. Not one escaped. Judas went to his own place.
The defiant prayer of envy and jealousy, "His blood be on
us, and on our children," was terribly answered; and no horror
of the present war surpasses the unspeakable sufferings of
Jerusalem. Nor did Pilate's neutrality save him for time or for
eternity. He did not avoid the danger he feared; but, accord-
ing to tradition, for other matters was made to answer to his
Roman master, and, like Judas, died by his own hand.
And Germany is succeeding only in laying up for herself
a store of wrath. The proverb shall be taken up against the
Emperor of Germany as against the king of Babylon, "How
hath the oppressor ceased! the exactness of gold ceased! The
Lord hath broken the staff of the wicked, and the sceptre of
the rulers. He who smote the people in wrath with a continual
stroke, he that ruled the nations in anger, is persecuted, and
none hindereth. The whole earth is at rest, and is quiet: they
break forth into singing. Yea, the fir trees rejoice at thee, and
the cedars of Lebanon, saying, Since thou art laid down, no
feller is come up against us. Hell from beneath is moved for
thee to meet thee at thy coming: it stirreth up the dead for
thee, even all the chief ones of the earth; it hath raised up
from their thrones all the kings of the nations. All they shall
speak and say unto thee, Art thou also become weak as we?
86 Revelations of The War
Art thou become like unto us? Thy pomp is brought down to
the grave, and the noise of thy viols: the worm is spread under
thee, and the worms cover thee. How art thou fallen from
heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How art thou cut
down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For
thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will
exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon
the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I
will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the
most High! Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the
sides of the pit. They that see thee shall narrowly look upon
thee, and consider thee, saying, Is this the man that made the
earth to tremble, that did shake kingdoms; that made the world
as a wilderness, and destroyed the cities thereof; that opened
not the house of his prisoners? All the kings of the nations,
even all of them, lie in glory, every one in his own house. But
thou art cast out of thy grave like an abominable branch, and
as the raiment of those that are slain, thrust through with a
sword, that go down to the stones of the pit; as a carcase
trodden under feet. Thou shalt not be joined with them in
burial, because thou hast destroyed thy land, and slain thy
people: the seed of evildoers shall never be renowned. Pre-
pare slaughter for his children for the iniquity of their fathers;
that they do not rise, nor possess the land, nor fill the face of
the world with cities. For I will rise up against them, saith
the Lord of hosts, and cut off from Babylon the name, and
remnant, the son, and nephew, saith the Lord. I will also make
it a possession for the bittern, and pools of water: and I will
sweep it with the besom of destruction, saith the Lord of
But observe, on the other hand, how the chief Sufferer, by
His inestimable sacrifice, laid up a store of grace for all human
kind. We who have found the Cross the medium of pardon
and of peace can understand the paradox, that Jesus was "de-
The War and Divine Sovereignty 87
livered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God,"
and yet was "taken by wicked hands and crucified and slain."
And we know now, that though righteousness appeared that
day to be defeated, with the battle of Golgotha, a new day
dawned for the world. And I would remind you, as this great
war is reminding us all, that the vicarious principle is wrought
into the very nature of things, and is the warp and woof of all
human history. And the blood which is being so freely poured
out in the cause of righteousness in Europe to-day, while it is
being shed "by wicked hands," is, notwithstanding, fulfilling
"the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God." And
that insures the most gracious results. We had thought that
the blood-price of "civilization" had been fully paid; but we
were mistaken. And we shall willingly pay the further price
as our hearts are assured that the blood of the righteous is not
shed in vain. Then we shall sing:
"Whate'er the loss,
Whate'er the cross,
Shall they complain
Of present pain
Who trust in God's hereafter?
"For who that leans on His right arm
Was ever yet forsaken?
What righteous cause can suffer harm
If He its part has taken'
Though wild and loud,
And dark the cloud,
Behind its folds
His hand upholds
The calm sky of to-morrow."
God had His way on Golgotha, as He will have His way
on Europe's fields of blood; and now, as in the ancient time,
He will triumph through the nature of things. The doctrine,
or let me rather say, the fact, of divine sovereignty, is quite
88 Revelations of The War
consistent with the human consciousness of volition. God is
the author of the nature of things, and He never does violence
to the nature of things. He deals with men in harmony with
their mental and moral constitution: He deals with them as
men; and not as machines. But there is a sense in which His
sovereignty consists in the nature of things. Evil is inherently
mortal. Like water, it is its nature to run down hill. It falls
from the loftiest throne by its own aberration. It is destroyed
by its own poison. Judas gravitates "to his own place"; "the
son of perdition" goes to his cavern at the end of the day;
measureless infamy descends to the welter of "the bottomless
But it is of the nature of righteousness to "exalt" whatever
it touches. It dwells in the high places; its native air is in
the uplands. From the pit into which envy has cast it, it rises,
like Joseph, from servitude to sovereignty. When the Man
of Nazareth had been crucified and laid in a grave, His enemies
conspired to keep Him there; and, sealing the grave, and set-
ting a watch, they "made it as sure as they could." But He
rose again from the grave; God having "loosed the pains of
death; because it was not possible that he should be holden of
it." And of the principles of truth, and justice, and liberty,
which were released by His resurrection, it must be said, it is
"not possible" for them to be "holden" by any power of earth
The conclusion of my whole argument this evening is this:
that the constitution of the universe and of everything in it, is
so framed that its well-being consists in obedience to the sov-
ereign will of God. That is true of every man and woman
here, and it is true of the Empire, and of all the nations of
the earth. God will triumph through the nature of things; and
everywhere men will reap what they have sown. Our salva-
tion and our peace consist in surrender to the will of God
revealed in the crucified and risen Christ. Germany will go to
The War and Divine Sovereignty 89
her own place as Judas did, and all that is best in our civiliza-
tion will survive the conflict; because it is "not possible" that
righteousness should perish. May it be ours to rest in the
"Man's weakness, waiting upon God,
It's end can never miss;
For men on earth no work can do
More angel-like than this.
"He always wins who sides with God;
To him no chance is lost;
God's will is sweetest to him when
It triumphs at his cost.
"Ill that He blesses is our good,
And unblessed good is ill;
And all is right that seems most wrong
If it be His sweet will."
"The telescope, we know, brings within the sphere
of our own vision much that would be undiscoverable
by the naked eye; but we must not the less employ
our eyes in making use of it, and we must watch and
calculate the motions and reason on the appearances
of the heavenly bodies, which are visible only through
the telescope, with the same care we employ in respect
to those seen by the naked eye. And an analogous
procedure is requisite if we would derive the intended
benefit from the pages of inspiration, which were de-
signed, not to save us the trouble of enquiring and
reflecting, but to enable us on some points to inquire
and reflect to better purpose; not to supercede the use
of our reason, but to supply its deficiencies."
THE BIBLE AND THE WAR.
"I will shew thee that which is noted in the scripture of truth."
My subject this evening is "The Bible and the War."
And my task is to try to clinch the teaching of the seven pre-
ceding addresses; for I have already repeatedly affirmed that
by the disclosures of the war the truth of the Bible is more
firmly established than ever.
In the first address I endeavored to prove that the doc-
trine of Scripture with respect to the depravity of human
nature, and its measureless capacity for evil, finds the strongest
possible confirmation on Europe's fields of blood. Following
upon that we tried to test the theory of the evolutionary origin
and progress of mankind by the moral standards and achieve-
ments of German "kultur"; and I hope it was made apparent,
at least to some minds, that, however plausible the evolution-
ary hypothesis may appear as an explanation of physical phe-
nomena, the war shows the theory utterly to have broken down
as a law of progress in the realm of morals. And in this con-
nection I sought to prove that the principle of divine interven-
tion, of the miraculous, of the presence of the supernatural in
human life, of which the appearance and power of Jesus Christ
in history is the supreme and comprehensive example, is the
only principle by which the moral and spiritual regeneration of
the human race can be effected.
92 Revelations of The War
The third address was on "The Virtue of Hatred"; and
in that it was observed that the mind is naturally disposed to
be tolerant of evil in the abstract; but that the war has dis-
closed something of the potency of abstract ideas, illustrating
the necessity for our learning to hate evil in the germ as web
as when fullgrown. And of this view we found abundant
confirmation in the Scripture; notably in Christ's own teach-
ing concerning the spirituality of the law and the divine atti-
tude toward abstract evil.
Growing out of this, in the address on Expiation we
observed that that which is noted in the scripture of truth, the
necessity of expiation—which is the heart of the doctrine of the
atonement—has received general recognition in the light of the
revelations of the war. And in the next address on Future
Punishment, which was the logical complement of that on
Expiation, by a great text which gave us a glimpse of the
immeasurable reaches of moral evil, we saw clearly the rea-
sonableness of future retribution; and that that which was
noted in the scripture of truth, in the lurid light of Germany's
fearful crimes, is instinctively felt to be a necessity of justice.
In the two addresses following, on the personality of
Satan, and the sovereignty of God, we found the war strikingly
illustrating these plain truths of the Bible; and in the latter of
these we saw how conflicting wills and motives are always
sovereignly over-ruled and made to accomplish the divine
I affirm therefore that the Bible is not contradicted by
the war; that there is no single truth of scripture, and no
single aspect of truth which the war does not illustrate and
confirm. I shall try to gather up these confirmations in three
or four comprehensive propositions.
I. THE WAR IS SERVING TO REVEAL THE BIBLE'S SU-
PREMACY OVER ITS CRITICS.
The Bible and The War 93
Within the last few years we have read much about the
menace of the possible European predominance of the Slav;
and we had come to look upon a certain highly cultured nation
as the bulwark of European liberties. Now we know where
that warning originated: the hands were Esau's hands, but the
voice was surely Jacob's. We have heard, too, not a little
about the decadence of Britain and the approaching dissolution
of the Empire. We now know that our apprehensions were
caused by an enemy's diagnosis, who planned to attribute to
disease the dissolution he hoped to effect by poison. The war
has already brought the British Empire to a moral and political
renaissance; it has resulted in a discovery of her moral and
material resources; and in a clarified vision of her possible
ministry to the welfare of the world.
But parallel to these political revelations, the war has
effected unveilings of still more important aspects of truth.
You are familiar with the story of Goliath's bullying all
Israel's army into a trembling and paralyzing fear of his mili-
tary prowess. But have you considered the psychology of the
Philistine's bluff? In it you will find a principle which ac-
counts for much of the success which great criminals have
achieved in their undertakings; a principle, also, which is
legitimately employed in successful advertising. It is, that
which is most boldly and frequently asserted, that is most
readily and generally believed. The best sellers of certain
commodities do not always owe their popularity to any superior
intrinsic merit; but to the fact that people have been told a
hundred thousand times that they are superior. And the story
has been told so often that it has gradually gained acceptance
as being true. It was thus Goliath threw his spell over Israel:
he asserted his superiority so boldly and frequently, and with
such contempt for all others, that the men of Israel at last
accepted his own estimate of his powers: "And the Philistine
drew near morning and evening, and presented himself forty
94 Revelations of The War
I recall an instance in a certain western Ontario town of
the criminal use of this principle. A gentleman of fine address
arrived in town at the head of a company of surveyors. They
were surveying a new railroad. The engineers found it neces-
sary to bring the road into the city through the best residential
district. It happened to cross the corner of many a fine lot;
and in some cases the stakes were driven on either side of a
fine mansion. The owners of the property were among the
most representative people of the city; people, please to ob-
serve, who could not be trifled with ! A careful observer might
have wondered why the surveys were so often changed; but he
never would have guessed that a prominent lawyer, and banker,
and business man, had whispered to the railway promoter, each
in the most confidential way, that it would be worth a great
deal to him if he could conveniently turn his survey in another
direction, and leave his property undisturbed. And the work
went merrily on. The promoter spent money freely, or, to be
strictly correct, he freely incurred financial obligations to the
townsfolks. The newspapers vied with each other in lauding
the new enterprise which was to be such a boon to the city.
The business and professional men of the town honored the
promoter at luncheons and banquets. A prominent banker
gave a garden party in his honor to which all the leading social
lights of the city were invited. And they all went. Among
them was a certain young lady. When she was introduced
to the great man there was a noticeable lack of warmth in their
greetings. Within an hour the promoter was in the cells.
He had been identified as one of the cleverest criminals of
the day. His whole railway scheme was a gigantic bluff. The
next day nobody wanted to see his or her name mentioned as
having been "among those present" at that garden party. It
never was possible to ascertain exactly to what extent he had
swindled the city; for the men who had paid their good money
to the swindler were ashamed of their folly and kept it largely
The Bible and The War 95
to themselves. But the promoter went to the penitentiary for
In the realm of religion, the bogey of German Biblical
"scholarship" is the most gigantic bluff which has defied the
armies of the living God since Goliath's day. And Israel has
feared before it. The major part of the army of Israel has
fallen under its spell. A few have critically examined it, and
have been unafraid. Others have critically observed, and
though armed with sword and shield, have feared to trust
their own judgment, and thus have fallen under the spell of
the giant's bold and contemptuous challenge. But the major-
ity, unknowing, have been filled with fear, and have refused
to go forth to the battle.
But the war has disillusioned us. We know now that
Israel has been afraid chiefly of an helmet of brass and a loud
voice. A "scholarship" which has subscribed to such flagrant
immoralities and injustices as Germany has been guilty of,
henceforth, will speak with little authority on matters requir-
ing such refinement of spirit as is essential to right judgments
of spiritual values. The time is not far distant when Biblical
Scholarship in particular, and Christian Opinion in general,
will be ashamed to have it known that they were "among those
present" at the German garden party. The war will have
accomplished much if it fully discloses the Jesuitical working
of the German mind, its arrogant assumption of superiority,
and its contempt for contrary opinion in all realms of human
I think it is not too much to say that God has arisen to
plead His own cause. He is vindicating His own word, and
putting its enemies to shame. The German giant whose con-
temptuous beastings of "assured results" filled Israel with
alarm, has been answered in an unexpected way; and it will
henceforth for many a year be the reverse of popular to deter-
mine our judgments of the word of the Lord by the standards
96 Revelations of The War
of Philistia. This is a great day for the Bible; and I predict
with confidence that one of the "assured results" of the war
will be seen to be the vindication of the Bible in the face of all
II. My next proposition is this: THE WAR IS REVEALING
THE AGREEMENT OF THE BIBLE WITH THE ARBITER OF HUMAN
I tried to make it clear to you last Sunday evening, that
when all has been said that can be said about the human causes
of the war; when responsibility for its outbreak has been duly
apportioned, so far as our fallible judgment can apportion it;
when the turpitude involved in that responsibility has been
justly estimated and acknowledged; there still remains an
element of inevitability which the statesmen of Europe recog-
nize though it cannot be defined. And students of ethics, of
which true lovers of the Bible are the most expert, must watch
the working of these elements in Europe's seething cauldron, as
a chemist analyzes a compound in his laboratory. And the
enlightened observer will be constrained to say, "The laws
which I see in operation there, are the laws which are revealed
in this Book: the will which is the predominant element there,
is the will which is revealed as sovereign here: thus the Scrip-
ture is being fulfilled."
You will ask, Do I mean that in the war explicit predic-
tions of Scripture are being fulfilled? I answer, that I have
no doubt that such is the case: and that we might know it to
be the case if we fully understood all that is written, and the
far-reaching effects of the events of the day. But of this I am
certain, that in a larger and more comprehensive sense, the
Scripture is being fulfilled. For the Scripture is but a name
for the revealed will of the supreme and sovereign Arbiter
of human destiny. And when the moral principles of this
Book are put to the proof, and found to be true, the Book is
as truly honored, and its words are as really fulfilled, as when
The Bible and The War 97
any specific prediction comes to pass. In human experience,
whether in individual instances, or on a large scale such as the
war provides, you may observe moral principles in action and
reaction; and in this particular instance the world is afforded
a most spectacular demonstration of the outworking of the
moral formulae of this Book. For this is a text-book on moral
chemistry. It tells how individual and national character must
be compounded in order to endure in the face of certain dis-
integrating influences from which nothing human can escape.
'The war is showing us how some things crumble away; and
how some things, contrary to all human theory, endure; how
the vainglorious and proud are abased, and the humble are
exalted; how righteousness exalteth and sin becomes a re-
proach. And it is not according to Darwin, or Spencer, or
Nietzsche, but according to Moses, and Daniel, and Paul. And
while the devout soul observes the inexorable operation of
-these moral laws, he becomes conscious of a spiritual Presence
saying, "I will shew thee that which is noted in the scripture
I can well believe that many a prophecy is being literally
fulfilled. One cannot but wonder at the change of British
European policy. It has long been a cardinal principle of our
foreign policy that neither Russia nor any other power was to
be permitted to possess Constantinople. It has been a kind of
British Monroe doctrine to which the Turk has long owed his
immunity from punishment. Now the world has been informed
that Britain is in full accord with Russia's ambition in this
direction. Is there another part of the agreement as yet un-
announced? Are we to witness the British occupation of
Palestine, the British flag flying in Jerusalem, to be followed
by the repatriation of the long-exiled race to whom it was
given in perpetuity by solemn covenant in a very ancient day?
And what power is smashing its way through the Dardanelles
to Constantinople? Is it British, or French, or are the mighty
98 Revelations of The War
engines of war only the instruments of that irresistible Will
which uttered itself in this word, "And they shall fall by the
edge of the sword, and shall be led away captives into all
nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles,
until the times of the Gentlies be fulfilled?" And will the
spade of the archaeologist, so long forbidden or restricted in
that holy land, at last be set free to work? And in that day
what confirmations of the written word will be found beneath
the accumulations of the centuries? Whether this be so or
not, of this I am sure, in the remaking of the map of the
world we shall see the working of the will of Him who hath
made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the
face of the earth, and hath determined the times before ap-
pointed, and the bounds of their habitation; that they should
seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him and find
him, though he be not far from every one of us. And when
the map is completed we shall hear our divine Monitor saying,
"I will shew thee that which is noted in the scripture of truth."
III. And we shall learn at last, more perfectly than we
yet have learned, and the war will teach us, THAT THE BIBLE.
IS THE TIMELESS WORD OF THE ETERNAL.
With the destruction of Germany's physical power many
a modern conception of life will be dissolved. I venture to
believe that thousands of books which were in vogue a year or
so ago will never be read after the war. The war will revo-
lutionize the world's thinking. Many views of a year ago will
be found too absurd to print, or, being in print, too ridiculous
to read. Books on the war will be no longer read. I saw a list
of fifty books on the war advertised only last night at less than
half price. But the Bible will not go out of print. No one
has been foolish enough to propose that soldiers be supplied
with books summarizing the alleged "assured results" of the
Higher Criticism, for their guidance in reading the Book of
books on the field of battle. But millions of copies of the Book
itself have been supplied the soldiers in the trenches; and still
The Bible and The War 99
it is proving fresher and sweeter than a letter from home.
Can you tell me why this war, which has turned the world
upside down; which has poured confusion upon all human plan-
ning; which has obsoleted many a witty invention; which
has neutralized our philosophies, and has revolutionized most
modern conceptions of life; should find the Bible absolutely
unsurprised, and the one and only book whose message is
relevant to the "unprecedented" situation? There is only one
answer, It is the timeless word of The Eternal.
"A glory gilds the sacred page,
Majestic like the sun;
It gives a light to every age,
It gives, but borrows none."
After all that men have said and written against it, it is
still the one Book which is worth reading at such a time as this.
And it is all because it enshrines the Person of the universal
Man, who is also the universal King. On Him the Christian
statesman will rely, and to His word of counsel he will look
for guidance in the gravest crises in the experience of the state.
And, like Joshua, the Christian commander on land and sea
will listen for this word's assurance of the presence in the
battle of the Captain of the Lord's hosts. The soldier will
read it in the trenches, and the sailor who must battle on the
sea. And the Book will speak to them as no other could of
home and friends and of all sweet influences which make life
rich and beautiful. Even as I speak to you some of our own
boys will perhaps be reading it in far-off France or Belgium;
and as the shell of the ocean shore seems to echo the murmur
of the wave, so this Book will speak to them as the echo of
all sweet music and of all holy voices which have ever spoken
to them of their Father in heaven. And the wounded will
breathe his fervent "Amen" when it is softly read to him, and
pillow his head on its promises, and find them hospitable as
his mother's breast. And the dying will listen to its sweet
assurance of pardon through the Saviour's blood, and resur-
100 Revelations of The War
rection by His life. And as the mariner, when the storm rages,
and the night is unrelieved by a single star. keeps his eye upon
the gleam from the lighthouse on the far-off shore, and at
last drops anchor in the quiet haven of his desire, so the de-
parting spirit will follow this shining light, and find it shining
more and more unto the perfect day. And in the house of
mourning, whose threshold will never more be crossed by the
feet of some brave spirits who have died in faith, the widow
and the orphan, the mother, and the maiden lover, will find
its precious promises magnified by their tears, and their sor-
rows solaced by its consolations.
And in the sphere of human activity, this Book will be
restored to its place. And men will return from their specula-
tions to the life of faith, and from their philosophical vagaries
to the verities of revelation. And the army of the Lord will
go forth to battle armed with the weapon tried and true; and
where human pride would fain have ruled, this Sceptre of Truth
shall prevail. And thus, may we hope, that even the land of
Luther shall learn afresh to love the word of God; and other
lands shall hear as never before, the wondrous story of redeem-
ing love. And when the fulness of time is come; when the
appointed hour of the King's coronation shall strike, and He
of whom the whole Book speaks, whose death and resurrection
and coming again it proclaims, when He shall be manifested,
and shall come to be glorified in His saints, and to be admired
in all them that believe, we shall see in His coming, as now
we see in the preparation for His coming, only that which is
noted in the scripture of truth.
"Almighty Lord, the sun shall fail,
The moon forget her nightly tale,
The deepest silence hush on high,
The radiant chorus of the sky;
"But, fixed for everlasting years,
Unmoved amid the wreck of spheres,
Thy word shall shine in cloudless day,
When heaven and earth have passed away."