But you have not so learned Christ;…
In the school of Jesus Christ it is not always the oldest or the cleverest who are the best scholars. In other schools the scholar must be naturally clever, or, at least, most industrious, if he is to gain a high place, and win a prize. In Christ's school there is a place and a prize for the dullest, and he will succeed very well if only he wants to learn. I want you all to come to Christ's school today, old and young, clever and dull, and to hear some of the lessons which that school teaches.
I. WE MUST LEARN TO HATE OUR OWN SINS. Like David, like St. Peter, like every penitent, when we think of the past we abhor ourselves, and sit down among the ashes of humiliation.
II. WE MUST LEARN TO KNOW OUR OWN WEAKNESS, AND OUR NEED OF A SAVIOUR. The world will not give us that lesson.
III. Another of the lessons we must learn is TO CONQUER OURSELVES. The world gives a great many instructions about conquering difficulties, beating down obstacles, overcoming enemies; but it is Christ's school alone which can show us how to conquer ourselves. You have probably noticed the change in a young country lad after he has enlisted for a soldier, and gone through his drill. Whereas he was a high-shouldered, slouching, ungainly figure, now he has learnt to carry himself like a soldier, he has conquered the old bad habits which he acquired by lounging in the lanes, or plodding along the furrows. My brethren, we have all got our bad habits, our ugly tempers, our sharp tongues, our discontented feelings, and it is only the drill of Christ's soldiers, and the teachings in Christ's school, which will make us get the better of them. And we shall learn in Christ's school to be brave. The world's school can teach us a certain kind of courage, but not the highest, nor the best. The world can teach us how to resent an injury, not how to forgive one. It is in Christ's school only that true heroes are made. The world can make such soldiers as Caesar, or Napoleon, but the school of Christ alone can make a Havelock or a Gordon. I have read of a poor boy who came to school with a patch on his clothes. One of his schoolmates singled him out for ridicule and insult; and the boy answered: "Do you suppose I am ashamed of my patch? I am thankful to a good mother for keeping me out of rags, and I honour my patch for her sake." All the noble army of martyrs, of every rank and kind, learnt the secret of their courage in the school of Christ, and have left us an example to follow.
(H. J. Wilmot-Buxton, M. A.)
Parallel VersesKJV: But ye have not so learned Christ;