1 Corinthians 1:4
I always thank my God for you because of the grace He has given you in Christ Jesus.
Sermons
Father and ChildCharles Kingsley1 Corinthians 1:4
Divine BlessingsJ. Lyth, D. D.1 Corinthians 1:1-9
Grace and PeaceC. Hodge, D. D.1 Corinthians 1:1-9
No Peace Without ChristJ. Pulsford.1 Corinthians 1:1-9
Paul's Claim to ApostleshipR. Tuck 1 Corinthians 1:1-9
Sosthenes a BrotherA. Scott.1 Corinthians 1:1-9
St. Paul and the ApostleshipC. Lipscomb 1 Corinthians 1:1-9
The Apostolic SalutationsDean Stanley.1 Corinthians 1:1-9
The Approach to RebukeE. Hurndall 1 Corinthians 1:1-9
The Authority of the Christian MinisterJ. Lyth, D. D.1 Corinthians 1:1-9
The Call of God IsJ. Lyth, D. D.1 Corinthians 1:1-9
The Church in CorinthM. Dods, D. D.1 Corinthians 1:1-9
The Peace of the Christian1 Corinthians 1:1-9
The SalutationThe Study1 Corinthians 1:1-9
The SalutationF. W. Robertson, M. A.1 Corinthians 1:1-9
Three Notes of the ChurchPrincipal Edwards.1 Corinthians 1:1-9
Threefold SanctificationProf. Godet., C. H. Spurgeon.1 Corinthians 1:1-9
Gifts are Signs of GraceR. Tuck 1 Corinthians 1:4-7
Thanksgiving on Account of Their GiftsH. Bremne 1 Corinthians 1:4-9
Apostolic Congratulation and WarningF. W. Robertson, M. A.1 Corinthians 1:4-13
Apostolic Thanksgiving ForJ. Lyth, D. D.1 Corinthians 1:4-13
Bearing Witness to the TruthR. K. Smoot, D. D.1 Corinthians 1:4-13
Christian ExcellenceJ. Willcox.1 Corinthians 1:4-13
Enriched by ChristMethodist Times1 Corinthians 1:4-13
Exemplary Gratitude and Precious ConfidenceD. Thomas D. D.1 Corinthians 1:4-13
Life Enriched Through ChristChas. Gore, M. A.1 Corinthians 1:4-13
Our Lord Jesus Christ IsClerical World1 Corinthians 1:4-13
Spiritual Riches by ChristJ. Cornford.1 Corinthians 1:4-13
The Blessings Which the GospelC. Simeon, M. A.1 Corinthians 1:4-13
The Enriching Power of GodN. Schenk, D. D.1 Corinthians 1:4-13
The Grace and Gifts of GodT. H. Barnett.1 Corinthians 1:4-13
The Power of UtteranceH. E. Channing, D. D.1 Corinthians 1:4-13
Utterance and KnowledgePrincipal Edwards.1 Corinthians 1:4-13
Paul, as is his wont, begins by congratulating the Corinthian Church on all that is good and praiseworthy in their character, and by expressing a confident hope for the future. This is just in itself, - tell a man his good points as well as his bad; and it is wise, for thus the good among them will be encouraged, and the evil will be the more disposed to listen to rebuke. Consider -

I. THEIR GIFTS (χαρίσματα).

1. They had the gift of "all utterance," as appeared in their highly gifted teachers and preachers; and they had "all knowledge," i.e. an intelligent apprehension of the truth. These two gifts are closely connected. There may be knowledge without utterance, in which case it is of profit only to the individual; and there is too often utterance without knowledge, to the hurt of speaker and hearer. This last is the plague of our time. Whoso feeds on empty words becomes lean. But how blessed is the union of thought and speech! Happy the Church that possesses spiritual insight into the mind of God, and the power of communicating this to the edification of others!

2. The other gift is that of "waiting for the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ." Faith rests on the first advent; hope looks onward to the second. The time of that great apocalypse has been left indefinite, even the Son being ignorant of it (Matthew 24:36). Sometimes it is represented as very near ("at hand," James 5:8; 1 Peter 4:7); while hints are dropped that this nearness is not to be taken according to our time measurement (2 Peter 3:8). The purpose of this uncertainty is that we may watch and wait, look for and earnestly desire the day of the Lord (2 Peter 3:12). The apostles maintained this attitude of expectancy, and exhorted others to maintain it. It is noted here as a mark of true spirituality, and elsewhere the crown of righteousness is promised to all them that "love his appearing" (2 Timothy 4:8). Apart from all points of dispute, the coming of the Lord a second time should exercise a powerful influence on the Christian's life. What a motive to holiness, a stimulus to work, a strength to endure affliction, is the thought, "The Lord is at hand"! "Amen: come, Lord Jesus" (Revelation 22:20). These gifts are:

(1) Of grace. They are not natural endowments. They are given by the free, good pleasure of God.

(2) Given in Christ Jesus. All fulness dwells in him, the fulness of the Godhead (Colossians 2:9). The gifts of grace come to us only through him (comp. 1 Corinthians 5:3). To him, therefore, let us repair, that we may receive of his fulness. In him we are truly enriched ("made full," Colossians 2:10).

(3) A confirmation of the gospel. The gospel is a testimony concerning Christ, not a system of doctrines. This was specially true of apostolic preaching: "That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you" (1 John 1:1-3); and it is true of all right preaching. There is a personal testimony to Christ and the power of his gospel unto salvation. This testimony is confirmed when it is believed and acted on. Faith and its fruits are the best evidences of Christianity. "He that hath received his witness hath set his seal to this, that God is true" (John 3:33).

II. ASSURANCE OF HOPE. These gifts of grace are pledges of future blessings.

1. Confirmation unto the end. (Ver. 8.) He who begins the good work in us will perfect it until the day of Jesus Christ (Philippians 1:6). God does nothing by halves. He not only brings up the sinner out of the horrible pit and sets his feet upon a rock, but he also establishes his goings (Psalm 40:2). The Holy Spirit is the "earnest of our inheritance" (Ephesians 1:14), the first instalment of the full heritage. "The God of all grace, who called you unto his eternal glory in Christ,... shall himself perfect, stablish, strengthen you" (1 Peter 5:10). Observe the links of the chain in Romans 8:29, 80. All through life, onwards to the end of the world, will God deliver our feet from falling (Psalm 56:13). "The righteous also shall hold on his way, and he that hath clean hands shall be stronger and stronger" (Job 17:9). This confirmation is effected by the continued impartation of his grace to the believer.

2. The object in view - "that ye be unreprovable in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ." (Comp. Colossians 1:22; 1 Thessalonians 5:23.) God will not stop short in his work of grace till it be fully completed. Meanwhile believers are unreprovable in Christ; no charge can be brought against them which he does not meet. Who shall impeach the perfection of his work for us? But we are not morally blameless in ourselves. Personal holiness is far from being perfect. In the day of Christ, however, this work shall be complete. The challenge, "Who shall lay anything to the charge of God's elect?" (Romans 8:33), will then apply to character as well as standing. God's ideal will be realized in us when we are holy as he is holy. What a comfort, amid conscious imperfection and sinfulness, to know that we shall one day be "set before the presence of his glory without blemish in exceeding joy (Jude 1:24)!

3. The security for this. "God is faithful." Not our faithfulness to him, but his faithfulness to us, is the ground of our assurance. Having called us into the fellowship of his Son, all else will follow (Romans 8:30). (See next homily.) Learn the duty of giving thanks for the blessing bestowed upon others. Our own joy shall thus be multiplied. - B.







I thank my God... for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ.
I. THE GRACE THEY HAD RECEIVED.

1. Freely given.

2. Richly supplied.

3. Amply confirmed.

II. THE HOPE THEY ANTICIPATED. They waited confidently for —

1. The coming of Christ.

2. Their final justification.

3. Everlasting fellowship with Him.

(J. Lyth, D. D.)

I. THE APOSTOLIC CONGRATULATION. "I thank my God," &c.

1. In the heart of St. Paul, the unselfishness of Christianity had turned this world into a perpetual feast. If we want to know what his life was, turn to 2 Corinthians 11.; yet it was filled with the blessedness which arises from the abilities to enjoy the blessings of others as though they were our own. Personally we get very little in this world; and if we are to mourn that we never had a whole kid to ourselves "to make merry with," life will become desolate indeed. Only by saying, "It is meet we should rejoice and be glad" with our brethren, can life be a blessing. Thus the apostle, in all his weariness and persecutions, was nevertheless always rejoicing with his Churches.

2. Here he rejoices over three gifts to the Corinthians —(1) That of utterance. To Paul a blessing was nothing unless it could be imparted to others. Knowing a truth is one thing, being able to express it is another, and to dare to express it another. "Utterance" implies both power and courage. A truth hidden is unproductive. And therefore the power of utterance becomes, by the grace of God, a faculty divine.(2) But there may be utterance without knowledge. St. Paul desired utterance in order to speak out something in him. With many persons utterance is only verbiage. Let us seek, not merely to have utterance, but to have something worthy of uttering. Be sure you speak that you do know, and nothing else.(3) The attitude of expectation (ver. 7), as though that were the best gift of all.(a) We are to look for a Church of the future — not of the past, nor of the present. The coming of Christ includes the perfect state of human society, and here — Christ coming to us, not our going to Him. And we are to be looking forward to this; not busying ourselves in dreams about, and mournings after, the past, nor complacently praising the present, but thankful to God for what we have, feeling that the past was necessary, and, still dissatisfied with our. selves, hoping something better yet, both for God's Church and world.(b) It, implies a humble expecting state; not dogmatising, not dreading, but simply waiting. The kingdom of God is within us; but the kingdom of God developed will be as the lightning, sudden and universal.

3. Note the ground of hope for the continuance and successful issue of those blessings. Not on any stability of human goodness, but the character of God (ver. 9). Had not Saul once had the Spirit? Had not Judas once had gifts? Who, then, could say that the Corinthians might not make shipwreck of their faith? The apostle answers this, not by counting on their faithfulness to God, but on God's faithfulness to them. Of course, this doctrine may be misused. We may rest upon it too much, and so become unwatchful and supine; but, nevertheless, it is a most precious truth, and without it I cannot understand how any man dares go forth to his work in the morning, or at evening lay his head on his pillow to sleep.

II. THE APOSTLE'S WARNING AND REPROOF.

1. Parties had arisen in Corinth.(1) That which called itself by the name of Paul. Now the teaching of this apostle differed from that of the others in the prominence which it gave to certain truths — justification by faith, the salvability of the Gentiles, and Christian liberty. Some of the Corinthians exaggerated all this, and said, "This is the truth and nothing else": accordingly they made the doctrine of justification by faith an excuse for licentiousness, and the doctrine of Christian liberty a cloak of maliciousness.(2) That which named itself after Apollos, the difference between whom and Paul seems to be not so much a difference of views as in the mode of stating those views; the eloquence of St. Paul was rough and burning, that of Apollos was more refined and polished.(3) That called by the name of Cephas, between whom and Paul there was this difference — that whereas the Spirit of God had detached Paul from Judaism by a sudden shock, in the heart of Peter Christianity had been slowly developed; he had known Jesus first as the Son of Man, and afterwards as the Son of God. It was long before he realised God's purpose of love to the Gentiles. Therefore all the Jewish converts preferred to follow him.(4) That calling itself by the name of Christ, who doubtless prided themselves on their spirituality and inward light, and looked down with contempt on those who professed to follow the opinion of any human teacher. Perhaps they ignored apostolic teaching altogether, and proclaimed the doctrine of direct communion with God without the aid of ministry or ordinances.

2. The guilt of these partisans did not lie in holding views differing from each other; the guilt of schism is when each party, instead of expressing fully its own truth, denies that others are in the truth at all. Nothing eats out the heart and life of religion more than party spirit. Christianity is love; party spirit is the death of love. Christianity is union amidst variety of views; party spirit is disunion. In these days of party spirit, be it urged solemnly on our hearts that we "love one another." Accuracy of view is worth little in comparison with warmth of heart. It is easy to love such as agree with us. Let us learn to love those who differ from us.

(F. W. Robertson, M. A.)

two blessed states of mind: —

I. EXEMPLARY GRATITUDE. "I thank my God always on your behalf." The gratitude here was —

1. Unselfish. "On your behalf." It is right and well to praise God for what He has done for us, but it is a nobler thing to praise Him for what He has done for others. No man rightly appreciates a blessing who does not desire others to participate in it. The sublimity of a landscape is more than doubly enjoyed when one or more stand by your side to share your admiration.

2. For spiritual good. "For the grace of God."(1) That grace which "enriched in all utterance and in all knowledge" — two splendid gifts where they are inspired by the "grace of God" and properly related. "Utterance" apart from "knowledge" is worthless and pernicious, volubilities of vice, garrulousness of social evils. "Knowledge" is of no value to others, unless it has effective "utterance." Knowledge with a powerful oratory will move the world; it has shivered dynasties, converted millions, and created churches.(2) That grace which confirmed in their experience the testimony of Christ. What higher gift than this — a personal realisation of Christianity?(3) That grace which inspired them with a practical hope of the appearance of Christ.

3. An habitual state of mind. "I thank God always." It was not an occasional sentiment. It was a settled attitude of heart.

II. PRECIOUS CONFIDENCE.

1. In Christ perfecting character. "Who shall also confirm you unto the end." So perfecting it that it shall be "blameless." All moral imperfections removed.

2. In His appearing again. The day when He will appear is the day of days for humanity.

3. In His granting them companionship. "Unto the fellowship of His Son Jesus Christ the Lord." "Where I am there ye shall be also."

(D. Thomas D. D.)

Paul uses here two expressions, elsewhere placed in the same close connection (see Romans 12:6; 1 Peter 4:10), "grace" (χάρις) and "gift" — not δῶρον or its cognate words (which might include every natural blessing common to heathen and Christian), but χάρισμα, the spiritual blessing connected with and flowing from God's "grace." Note that —

I. BOTH ARE CHARACTERISTIC OF THE GOSPEL DISPENSATION.

1. True, "grace" is mentioned in the Old Testament, and God is proclaimed to be "gracious," but this rarely. It is in the New Testament that we have complete revelation of this, and first have the frequent phrase "the grace of God."

2. And this because "grace... came by Jesus Christ" (John 1:17; Titus 2:11). So in the text. God's fullest, freest favour to a sinful world, made possible by the sacrifice of Christ, made manifest by His life and ministry, and made over to His disciples as an abiding possession in the outpouring of the Spirit.

3. The "gifts" of God are thus —(1) The heritage of the Christian Church, which is the special sphere of the Holy Spirit's operations (2 Corinthians 6:16; Ephesians 2:22).(2) Distributed to believers by Him as being God (chap. 1 Corinthians 12:4, 11).(3) The outcome of the Divine grace of our Christian calling (Romans 12:6), and argue the possession of that grace (1 Peter 4:10).

II. BOTH ARE TO BE USED BY US.

1. "Grace" looks chiefly to the side of personal sanctification. St. Paul beseeches his converts not to "receive the grace of God in vain" (2 Corinthians 6:1), shows how he himself had been changed from a chief of sinners "by the grace of God" (1 Corinthians 15:10), and thanks God that they had been partakers of the same blessing (text and 1 Corinthians 6:11).

2. "Gifts" look chiefly to the side of Church edification. They are to be used for others (1 Peter 4:10). Some have more, and some less; some have one, and some others. In our text St. Paul mentions two, "utterance" (or perhaps the expounding of "doctrine" — λόγος) and "knowledge" of spiritual things. In chap. 12. he shows how this Church was "enriched" by an abundance (see vers. 1 Corinthians 12:8-10, 28).

3. As every truehearted Christian has received both grace and some spiritual gift or gifts, we should be careful to use both aright.

(1)To profit by all "means of grace."

(2)To essay some work in the Church.

4. The grace and gifts of God may be neglected or misused. Illustrate by the parable of the ten pounds for "grace," and of the ten talents for "gifts."

III. BOTH POINT FORWARD TO THE END SET BEFORE US.

1. Sanctification is in order to that "holiness without which no m an shall see the Lord" (Hebrews 12:14); to that being "like Him," that we may "see Him as He is" (1 John 3:2).

2. Christian work is not an end, but the means to an end, even preparedness for the second coming of Christ.

3. This second advent — and not death — is the one great end set forth in the New Testament as the goal of the Christian's hopes and efforts. So our text.Conclusion: Let this subject lead to —

1. Thankfulness for the grace of God manifest in the progress of His work amongst us.

2. Humility in the recognition of our spiritual gifts as of His grace alone.

3. Earnestness in the fulfilling our obligation of "ministering the same one to another."

4. Singleness of purpose in looking towards the end of God's work in us and by us — the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

(T. H. Barnett.)

I. IMPLANTS —

1. An enlightened mind.

2. A waiting spirit.

II. SECURES —

1. The continued preservation of believers.

2. Their ultimate acceptance.Application:

1. Be thankful if you are partakers of this grace.

2. Be careful to walk worthy of it.

3. Remember in whom is all your strength.

(C. Simeon, M. A.)

Paul here brings this before us as —

I.A FACT OF HUMAN EXPERIENCE.

II.A PRODUCT OF DIVINE INFLUENCE.

III.A SUBJECT OF THANKFULNESS TO GOD.

(J. Willcox.)

Clerical World.
I. THE CHANNEL OF DIVINE GRACE. If we are "called to be saints," "partakers of the heavenly calling," it is all in and through "the grace given by Jesus Christ" (ver. 4).

II. THE SOURCE OF ALL SPIRITUAL GIFTS. "Enriched by Him in all utterance and in all knowledge" (ver. 5); "So that ye come behind in no gift" (ver. 7); "Who shall also confirm you unto the end" (ver. 8); "That ye be unreprovable" (R. V.).Thus: Gifts of —

1. Preaching.

2. Hearing.

3. Miracles (1 Corinthians 12:4).

4. Per. severance.

5. Holiness — Are all traced to Him as the Author.

III. THE SUBJECT OF APOSTOLIC PREACHING. "The testimony of Christ" means the witness given concerning Christ. Christ is the Alpha and Omega of all true preaching. Christ in all His work and offices, especially "Christ as crucified."

IV. THE OBJECT OF CHRISTIAN EXPECTATION (vers. 7, 8). We look for Him in faith, and hope, and love. His coming will be a revealing of His glory, and of our judgment. May we be "unreprovable" in His sight.

(Clerical World.)

That in everything ye are enriched by Him
I. MAN POOR BY NATURE (Revelation 3:17). Lost his birthright — his inheritance.

1. Poor in time. If not enriched, poor in eternity.

2. "Poor" in utterance, because poor in knowledge. His language impious, foolish, idle, &c.

3. "Poor," though possessing earthly wealth. "Carry nothing out."

4. "Poor," because without Him, "without whom nothing is strong."

II. MAN ENRICHED BY GRACE (Revelation 3:18). Birthright restored. Inheritance secured. "If children, then heirs."

1. "Rich" in utterance — "all utterance" — because rich in "all knowledge." Holy, loving, grateful words. Prayer and praise.

2. "Rich," though possessing little of this world's wealth. "Having nothing, yet," &c.

3. "Rich," because "in Christ," "in whom dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily." "Unsearchable riches." Enriched by Him. All of Christ, "who for our sakes became poor that we... might be made rich."

(J. Cornford.)

"In everything" — in your

(1)physical,

(2)intellectual,

(3)emotional,

(4)spiritual natures.All nature shows this affluence of God. We are enriched in all our relations — at home, in society, &c. "In Him." This can be said of no one else than God. Presidents and kings may help us to justice. Millionaires, railroad magnates, and bankers have the power to enrich us temporally. Only of God can it be said that in everything ye are enriched by Him. In what ways are we enriched?

1. The best way to secure true honours is to make our lives conform to Christian principles.

2. The ideas of inspiration will more largely and more permanently enrich the intellect than draughts drawn from other reservoirs of wisdom. All others are receiving reservoirs: the Bible is a fountain source.

3. The man whose business is conducted on a Christian basis will most certainly be rich in the best sense of the word. No one is rich who is not rich in contentment and in good works.

4. We are enabled in God to believe in and assert our immortality.

5. In Him we have a wealth of spirituality which is ever-increasing. It is unaffected by the grave. Lack we any good thing, we ask and receive. All things are ours. If such to us is the enriching power of God on earth, how much more enriching will that power be in the world to come!

(N. Schenk, D. D.)

Methodist Times.
1. Christ has enriched the world's intellectual life. Range of human thought immense, but finite. Grandeur of world's art and literature evidences the high, capacious powers of man. Christ has touched and refined the world's art and literature. Ancient literature, except Jewish sacred writings, Pagan, a mass of mingled glory and shame. Christ's purifying influence. To-day the world's art and literature are Christian.

2. Christ has enriched the world's moral life. Fatal weakness of human moralists. Lacked authority. Christ spake with authority. His teachings not opinions, but living rule of life and conduct. Christ's teachings have changed the world's moral life. Most important.(1) The Fatherhood of God. New meaning given to Old Testament simile, "Like as a father," &c.(2) The brotherhood of man. Strong and wise to help the weak and ignorant. "Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ."(3) Necessity of moral change to fit men for the kingdom of heaven.(4) Life and immortality brought to light. Christ alone speaks here with authority. "In My Father's house are many mansions."

3. Christ has enriched the world's social life. Truths which enrich the world's thought and moral life bound to tell upon its social life. Living power in true and noble thoughts to leaven character. Truth subjective in its influence upon the mind; objective in character and influence upon others. Christian thought can mould a nation's life.

(1)Human life made sacred.

(2)By the elevation of woman.

(Methodist Times.)

If you will to be His disciple, He will enrich your life, He will purge it of its pollution, He will conquer your lusts, He will enlighten your mind, He will deepen in you all that is generous and rich and brotherly and true and just. He will make your life worth having — yea, increasingly worth having — as you gain in experience of His power and His love, even to the end. He will touch your sufferings and your labours with the glory of His sympathy; He will deepen your hopes for yourselves and others with the security of an eternal prospect. At the last He will purify and perfect and welcome you. Only do not make the fatal mistake of imagining that your life is Christian anyhow, or that it can be Christian by any other process than by your deliberate and courageous acceptance of the law of Christ, because you desire to be His disciple.

(Chas. Gore, M. A.)

There is another power which each man should cultivate according to his ability, but which is very much neglected in the mass of the people, and that is the power of utterance. A man was not made to shut up his mind in itself, but to give it voice and to exchange it for other minds. Speech is one of our grand distinctions from the brute. Our power over others lies not so much in the amount of thought within us as in the power of bringing it out. A man of more than ordinary intellectual vigour may, for want of expression, be a cipher, without significance, in society; and not only does a man influence others, but he greatly aids his own intellect by giving distinct and forcible utterance to his thoughts. We understand ourselves better, our conceptions grow clearer, by the very effort to make them clear to another. Our social rank, too, depends a good deal on our power of utterance. To have intercourse with respectable people we must speak their language.

(H. E. Channing, D. D.)

The two special gifts of the Corinthians consisted partly in the elevation and consecration of their national characteristics. Speech occupies no less prominent a place in the New Testament than it did among the Greeks. It has for its object to bear witness for Christ, and is a "gift" of God for which the apostle gives thanks. Christianity broke on the world as a new revelation, which, by being told and echoed on all sides, is powerful to regenerate men. This is the origin and life of preaching; for, as Pascal says, "The saints have never been silent."

(Principal Edwards.)

Even as the testimony of Christ was confirmed in you.
Note —

I. THE TESTIMONY OF JESUS. When He was brought before Pilate the interrogatory was, What was His mission? The response was that He had a kingdom, not of this world, and consequently He must be a King. His was the kingdom of truth; and the weapons of His warfare were not carnal, but spiritual. He came into the world that He might bear witness to the truth. The Pharisees charged Him with witnessing for Himself. The response was not a denial of the facts, but a reaffirmation that He should be the light of the world and bear witness to the truth. When John, in his exile, began to see the revelations of God, he declared that Jesus was the faithful Witness: that He was the Prince of the kings of the earth. Whether, therefore, we view Him in prophecy or in history, or in the revelation which He made of Himself to His servants, we see that His mission was to be that of Witness.

II. JESUS HAVING GIVEN HIS EVIDENCE FOR TRUTH, IT NOW REMAINS FOR EVERY RELIEVER TO CONFIRM THAT WITNESS TO THE WORLD IN HIS LIFE BY WORDS AND DEEDS. The world does not believe in the Son of God. The Pharisees told Him that His witness was not true. He, on the other hand, when He had laid claim to being the witness for the truth, speaking as never man spake, working with the mighty power of God, turns round upon His followers, and says unto them, "Ye shall be My witnesses." The idea here evidently is that Jesus, having once deposed, they must stand forth to confirm Him before the world. He is, so to speak, the main witness in court. The effort is to break Him down when He claims to be the King of the truth. His word has been spoken, and now His people are rendering their evidence; it is passing silently to the jury, and the verdict is rapidly being made up, either for or against the Son of God. Men must receive Him. This they will do when they see His disciples corroborating in their lives the witness He made for the truth. This corroborating witness of the Church is borne in these ways: we do for God, or we bear for Him, or we suffer for Him. The world pays a special tribute to Christian ethics when it says, Your creed is a good one, but your life is not up to it. We may print religious literature and scatter it over the land, but the world will not read books — it is too busy, too restless, too eager; but it will read you, and it will receive or reject the claims of the religion of Christ in proportion as it finds in everyday life the record which believers are there making, the witness they are giving.

(R. K. Smoot, D. D.)

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