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MARKS OF METHODISM.

MARKS
OF METHODISM
And Other

Studies.

B^

BRIAN WIBBERLEY

ADELAIDE
Whillas & Ormiston, Limited.
1905.

TO THE

RIGHT HONORABLE SIR


Bt.,

P.C,

S.

J.

D.CL, LL.D.

A NO LESS DEVOTED THAN

DISTINGUISHED

SON OF THE METHODIST MANSE,


I

IN

WAY,

DEDICATE THESE STUDIES,

ADMIRATION

AND

ESTEEM.

FOREWORD.
is

considerable

with

IT forth

this

Many

book.

little

Methodists could

have

conspicuous success what


ently

diffidence

that

modern

other

accomplished

with

have herein only

send

indiffer-

though sincerely attempted.

volume

This

is

no manual

for

Students, but a

simple setting of some aspects of Methodist


service concerning which,

seems

it

and

life

me, there

to

is

manifest need for the direction of attention to-day.


It

is

written

young Methodists
past

has

Methodists

for

especially,

been duly

not

and

generally

whose inheritance of the


appraised,

and

modern estimate needs

whose
be

appreciation of

its

translated

the terms of present privilege and

into

to

future possibility.

Simple and unpretentious as these studies

must be judged within the


"Only,

since

God

Of lowly matter
I

throw

me

beg to acknowledge

Wiseman
in the

for

much

are,

they

limits of their set purpose.

doth often vessels

for

high uses meet,

at

His

my

make

feet."

obligation to the

Rev

L.

historic information incorporated

paper on the Evolution of Methodist Music.


Brian Wibberley.

Adelaide, 1905.

CONTENTS.
MARKS OF METHODISM
i.

11.

in.

The Practice of a Passion


The Art of an Adaptation
The Fact of a Fellowship

METHODIST WORSHIP

...

...

13

...

25

...

37

...

49

METHODIST MUSIC
1.

11.

The Evolution of the Germ


The Function of the Organism

65
S

METHODIST RENEWAL, OR MAY WE


EXPECT ANOTHER REVIVAL ?
I.

11.

hi.
iv.

The
The
The
The

Expression of

Need of it
Means of it
Assurance of

...

97

...

...

107

...

...

119

...

131

it

it.

METHODISM AND THE MASSES, OR


THE CHURCH AND THE WORKING CLASSES.
Consternation

141

hi.

Condemnation
Commendation

161

iv.

Conciliation

1.

II.

THE MISSION OF METHODISM

181

MARKS OF METHODISM
I.

THE PRACTICE OF A

PASSION.

" Beliefs

fire

Makes

all else,

but

stiff

penetrate our

life

with such a glow

We

of

As

fire

once in me,

lends

wood

to

show

itself

or iron."

Browning.
"If you asked me what was
should say

almost

it

the great message of Wesley,

was conversion.

unknown word.

Ere

He made

his time, conversion

was an

he articulated

he ex-

it,

it,

pressed the value of the soul before the ever-living Gcd.

If

take Wesley out of the eighteenth century, you change

all

poetry into

pallid

you extinguish

prose,

romance."

"lam
I

its

great

Dr.

you
its

religious

Fairbairn.

housed at Mr. Wildman's, an old friend of mine in

these parts

When

he and his wife are two perfectly honest Methodists.

came

Mr. Tennyson,

asked her after news and she replied


there's only

that Christ died for men.'

news, and good news, and

one piece of news that

And
new

said to

news.'

her,

'Why,

know

'That

is

old

"

Lord Tennyson to Miss Sellwood, 1839.

MARKS OF METHODISM.

The Practice

I.

A
thus:
ists."

of

modern lexicographer has defined Methodism

"

The

^principles

But what are

Methodists

and practices of Method-

" the principles

may be

and practices of

" ?

Packed into shortest phraseology

pity,

Passion.

expressed

as

divine

and a helpful fellowship.

their

subjectively an experience,
sion.

Its

ideal

marked degree

function

passion,

human

This needs no

laboured demonstration, for Methodism


tively the realisation of a

synonyms

is

superla-

supreme, divine passion

and objectively an expanhas been fulfilled to a

in its real facts, in the actual spread-

ing of holiness through the land, the essence and history of which practice, constitute a record of divine

MARKS OF METHODISM

working through

passion

actively

sublime pity,

adopted and adaptly applied and consummated in


a sympathetic spiritual fellowship.

Of Methodism's

essential marks, passion

the sine qua non, the

teristic,

compared with

for,

tively,

Methodism

is

charac-

prime fundamental,

this, all else is

Rela-

secondary

not a system, but a soul

is

not

an institution, but an indwelling; not an organisa-

Thus,

but an organism.

tion,

to use

pardonably mixed metaphor, passion

Wordsworth's
" is

the very

pulse of the machine."

Methodism has had more than one form or phase.


Its

tirst

and

expression,

instituted

known

Oxford Methodism,

as

by Charles Wesley and

his

fellow-

students at Christ Church College, was an expedient,

temporary and short-lived.

and

traditional

It

none the

less

that the

severe

wood was dead and


soul

struggles

he

rotten

wrote

the ends of the earth that

convert the

self."

was a noble

effort

But, in Georgia,, John Wesley discovered

failure in the self-revealing

to

it

wooden forms of English

to kindle into a flame the

religion.

was churchy, rubrical

Indians,

and after several

his

confession

words: "I

I,

who went

of

learned in
to

America

was never converted my-

RAISON D'ETRE

ITS

15

That judgment was the death sentence of Oxford


Methodism, with its High Churchmanship, its sacand was exe-

ramentarianism and institutionalism,

May

cuted on

Wesley wrote
willingly,

which date John

24, 1738, concerning


:

'

In the evening

went, very un-

a society in Aldersgate-street,

to

where

one was reading Luther's preface to the Epistle to


the

About a quarter before

Romans.

9,

while he

was describing the change which God works


through

heart

faith

strangely warmed."

Lecky,

the

Christ,

in

Of

historian,

now

this

felt

triat

heart

familiar meture

says: "It

pertinently

scarcely an exaggeration to say

my

in the

is

the scene which

took place at that humble meeting at Aldersgatestreet

forms an epoch in English history."

From
merged
herit.

"

moment Oxford Methodism was subthe Evangelical Methodism, which we in-

that
in

To

realise the divine passion

heart strangely

warmed

"

that

moving through
is

the principle,

the characteristic trait, the all in all of

Out of that

"

warmed

lishment of a " Society

came the germ


communion.

It

cell

heart
" at

"

Methodism.

proceeded the estab-

the Foundery, which be-

of Methodism as an evangelical

comprised

" a

company of men hav-

ing the form and seeking the power of godliness."

The presence

of this divine passion was even then

METHODISM

MA*RKS OF

16

the characteristic condition


the wrath to come,

and

"

a desire to

from

flee

be saved from their sins

to

"

being the only stipulated basis of membership. There

was no theologic

no confession of doctrine, nor

test,

The

subscription to articles.
lied

upon

sible peril.

said

to preserve the personal faith

*" See

Wesley

" I

God and man."

am

think and

Give

sick of opinions.
religion, a

""

The

let think.

me

humble, gentle love

distinguishing marks of a

Methodist are not his opinions of any


I

from pos-

that your heart be right with God,"

good and substantial


of

potent passion was re-

What

want

sort.

holiness of

is

They who have that are my brother and sister


Here was one who believed with
and mother."

life.

Jean Ingelow
"

Learn that

to love is the one

Or God

man."

or

way

Of John Wesley might Browning have

He

"

Thus
" the

and

its

know,

written

at least believed in soul,

And was

to

the accent

new

very sure of God."

was placed on the

heart,"

" the

" holiness

result,

seat of passion

heart right

with

God,"

of life," and " substantial

religion."

^Methodism
terpreter of

is

its

a spiritual organism, and every

movement and

history,

its

in-

nature and

;;

THE METHODIST EMPHASIS


dynamic, from Wesley himself down
Methodist preacher, declares

and motive

Sunday's

crowning evidence

be the individualised experience of a

to

was born

divine passion. l^Methodism


it

its

to last

17

at the Cross

abides there, singing with passionate lips Wesley's

yearning lines
"

Oh,

And

me

let

to detect

kiss

Thy

bleeding feet,

peep and cynic bark

which profess

spiritual fact in the

and which now and

above-quoted ravishing

lines,

again protest

Atonement

that the

anticipated by John Wesley,

Charles, went on singing


story of

who

is

ethical,

Thy

were

declared that " doc-

and therefore, with

trine is for doing,"

The

"

tears."

proceed to denounce a too physical

and

and sensuous representation of a

"

my

bathe and wash them with

" critic

The

his brother

love repeat

In every fallen sinner's ears

That

all

Since

1,

Surely that
"

principle

doing.
it

may

hear the quickening sound,

e'en I,

is

have mercy found."

ethical

and

The Cross

producing pity

and practice

practice,"

is

not a contemplation merely

becomes a compulsion.
B

passion

is

There and there only


MARKS OF METHODISM

18

"

And
The
"

Conscience wakes,

the heart in pain for

For the

own

its

red stain,

sins of others breaks."

Methodists' psalm of life

What shall I do
What Thou for

had
its

motive in

its

method

make it known
all mankind hast done?"
passion, its movement in
to

and

in penetration,

its

means

pity,

perform-

in

So, then, Methodism's " practice " has a policy

ance.

and a programme, a purpose and a plan.

As an

>

may

illustration of this passion in

instance John Wesley's farewell address at the

Conference at Chester, in 1790:


ers," said he, "

in

we

action,

wherever there

and preach the Gospel

under a hedige or a

is

if it

"Fellow-labour-

an open door, enter


be to two or three

preach the Gospel

tree,

go out

quickly into the streets and lanes of the city and

maimed and

bring in hither the poor and the

Lord,

it

done as Thou hast commanded, and yet there

is

halt
is

And

and the blind.

the

room.'

Then,

"'

lifting

his

flowing

down

there

room; yet there

is

his

cheeks,
is

he repeated,

go

two or three
!

Hear

quickly
his

poor

"

Mark

room."
!

'

and with

hand,

man, and the manner

sage, the

a hedge

the servant said,

tears

And

yet

the mes-

Note the accents

and maimed'

repeated call

"

under

Yet there

is

THE PASSION
room

Watch

!"

IN PRACTICE
hand

the uplifted

intreaty, or benediction

as if in prayer,

See the tear-bathed face

Here was one whom Ezekiel's


horn " would have " marked "

"

man

one

and who

multitudes, was

To
less

"

who

sighed

He saw

the

moved with compassion."

Wesley, the

"

Apostle John of England," no

than to Paul, " the Apostle of the Gentiles," ap-

H. Myers's interpretative lines:


Oft, when the word is on me to deliver,
Open the heavens, and the Lord is there;

ply Mr.
"

with an ink-

Another, who, " when

cried."

19

Desert or throng, the City or the river

Melt in a lucid paradise of

Only

like souls,

I see the

air.

folk there under,

Bound who should conquer,

slaves

who should

be kings

Hearing thus one hope with an empty wonder


Sadly contented in the show of things.

There with a rush the intolerable craving,


Shivers throughout

me

like a

trumpet call;

Oh, to save these, to perish in their saving,

Die for

their life, be offered for them: all

At Cardiff Wesley wrote


heart

was enlarged, and

over,

so that

"

enlarged

heart

in his

journal

knew not how

continued three hours."


"

was

ever

!"

"

to give

And

characteristic

My

as

that

he

MARKS OF METHODISM

20

conducted services four and

He

open-air.

preached

vignette

is

that of

times daily in the

at taverns while his horses

What

were being baited.

five

an exquisitely revealing

him standing on

his father's

tomb

one lovely June evening and pouring out entreaty

and persuasion

" for

near three hours," and that his

fourth service for the day

Who

can forget the passion of Whitefield as he

is

standing with sinking candle in his hand to

seen

the last, pleading with the people on the very night


in

which he dies

And

it

must not be forgotten that

Wesley and Whi^efceld had many


gical,

temperamental, and otherwise

made them Methodists what


na^Urtheir intense reality,
their

differences, theolo-

J.

R. Green has desig-

their earnestness,

This was the secret of

wonderful power as twenty thousand

them

at

language
"

their

Through such

resulted

colliers listened

blackened faces.

Truly, in the

profound

conception

souls alone,

stooping shows sufficient of His light

For us

Even

their

making white

Browning's

of

God

and

tears

Kings wood, with

down

channels

but one bond

tremulous sympathy with the sin and

deep,

sorrow of mankind."

to

i'

the dark to rise by

the " divisions " of


in

the numerous

"

Methodism which have


separate

denominations

COMPANION PICTURES
may be

Whatever the demerits of the

may have

misunderstandings

nothing

and

distinctly traced to this very principle

practice of passion.
initial

21

to>

been, they are as

the merits of the intense evangelical fer-

vour which everywhere marked the founders of the

Minor Methodist Churches.

It

was the perception

of the urgent need for evangelisation that was the

quickening

" great-hearts " like

" Primitive "

Their

tians."

Hall
u

"

Methodists and

those

very

"

Bible Chris-

were, as the famous Robert


irregular,"

irregularities "

glorious

of

moved with compassion/' were

efforts

declared,

master-motive

Bourne and Clowes, or O'Bryan


"

and Thorne, who'


truly

and

impulse

but

Christlike,

they

were

Apostolic,

and Methodistic.

The cadence of

this characteristic

passion George

Eliot caught and interpreted through the sweet lips

and

saintly life of the devout

thodism learned

" the

secret

Dinah Morris.

Me-

and method of Jesus,"

and long before Arnold had coined that

felicitous

phrase our fathers had caught the more felicitous


fact.

suit

"fire

burned in their bones," and some

of that sublime passion

Methodism
said that

pity,

passion,

Methodism was

"

we know.

power.

This

re
is

Dr. Chalmers

Christianity in earnest/'

MARKS OF METHODISM

22

and, as Professor Seeley observes, " Christianity

an enthusiasm: or

it

is

nothing."

Were the former days better than these?


we degenerate? Is Methodism decadent?
"

played out

" ?

"

God of our fathers, be the God


Of their succeeding race !"

"

Lord God of Hosts, be with us


Lest

we

forget

is

lest

we

forget

yet,
!"

Are
Is

it

MARKS OF METHODISM.
II.

THE ART OF AN ADAPTATION.

"A

foolish consistency

With consistency

is

the

hobgoblin

of

a great soul has nothing to do.

well concern himself with his

little

minds.

He may

as

shadow on the wall."

Emerson.
"

for heat

and

light united."

-John Wesley,

" You cannot cut John Wesley out of our National


single figure influenced so

so

many

hearts.

England."

No

many minds, no

other

man

life.

No

single voice touched

did such a

life's

work

for

A. BlRRELL.

MARKS OF METHODISM.

The Art

II.

The
it

Adaptation.

Methodism

of

passion

characteristic

play in practice.
ing,

of an

The genius of

finds

genesis persist-

its

bursts the bonds of prescriptive orders and

restrictive prohibitions

for " love at

uttermost

its

cannot be content or contained as a pent-up passion


it

must be spent out

Its source seeks a

bodiment;

its

"

demands a demonstration.

it

sphere;

emotion craves an em-

its

action finds an accommodation.

Its

personal experience issues in a practical evangelism

which in true apostolical

many
to all

as " beside itself

men,

if

"

spirit

as

by any means

it
it

may

often appear to

becomes

may

intuitively

things

save some." This

the master minds of Methodism, from,

downwards, have

" all

John Wesley

interpreted.

MARKS OF METHODISM

26

Thus, the product of the personal passion

is

the

evolution of an evangelical efficiency, adaptable, in


application, to the special needs of the hour and

its

ever-varying

the

of

necessities

clamant

circum-

This was the characteristic mark of Me-

stances.

thodism's earliest effort, and

still

remains the sign

manual of her worthiest workmanship.


"

New

occasions teach

was Methodism,

spirit

new

duties,"

new wine must be

that the

into this

as an evangelical polity,

In the wisdom of the Master

tised.

and

for the saving alike of both " the

recognised

it

bottled in

bap

new

skins,

form and

spirit

of godliness."

Hence, Wesley became an innovator and icono


clast
aji

the evangelist

became

the popular, plain preacher

became

the saint became a seer

ecclesiastic;

the people's path-finder.

Emerson's

Like
"

" Master-Builder "

Himself from God he could not free

He
The

builded better than he knew,


conscious stone to beauty grew."

Wesley was possessed not only of


insight,

ends,

and

sight,

in the art of adaptation of

but of

means

to

stands out as a modern model of prophetic

foresight,

genius.

apostolic

accommodation,

and'

gigantic

Discharging the functions of his episcopal

METHODISM A REFORM
and adopted

to the pulpits,

unheard

tions

admitted laymen

he ordained his ministers,

office,

He

edited the

paper of his country; under


lady

thodist

assump-

preaching

field

and proceedings most irregular be-

of,

fore his day.

27

Hannah

Ball

founded, Sunday-schools
fore Robert Raikes

first

religious news-

influence

his

conducted,

Me-

and

so

a quarter of a century be-

and, by his " Notes on the New-

Testament," based on a new translation, he was the


first

"

"

higher critic

of his day.

As every student knows,


social

movements but had

"warmed
tedly,

Of

heart."

Methodism

is

few modern

there are
their

germ

Wesley's

in

the Methodist Revival, admitthe

least

Here,

result.

change the metaphor, was the igniting torch that


the fuel

thropy

"

and fed

the

of

fires

the "

preceded John

Howard

founded the

in a

movement

first

needed funeral reform.

and prison

etc.,

still

By

much-

he popularised science

manuals of medicine, grammar,

fully attest.

life.

established

free dispensaries,

How

He

for ameliora-

banks for the poor, and even instituted a

little

philan-

emancipation agitation.

his

ting the ferocity of the penal laws

his

lit

Clarkson and Wilberforce were anticipated

by John Wesley in

He

new

to

his translations

history,

and abridg-

ments of standard books, and by his original writ-

MARKS OF METHODISM

28

ings in prose and poetry, he stands out as the lead-

ing litterateur of his times, his publications amounting to upwards of two hundred volumes.

No

critic

who,

rell,

can question the conclusion of Mr. Bir-

in his " Miscellanies," regards

who

" lived

John Wes-

ley

as one

life

of his century than any of the great

And

his time.

nearer the centre

with what result history

Green records the fact that

"

of the

"

men

testifies.

of

Mr.

Methodism originated

the steady attempt, which has never ceased from* that

day

to this, to

suffering,

moral

and

remedy the

in a

social degradation.

enthusiasm

changed

guilt, ignorance, physical

new

Methodism

appeared.

few years the whole temper of English

society."

With, what significance are Wesley's words freight-

ed

as,

when prevented from ministering within

the

"

The

precincts of the parish church, he declared,

world

my

is

parish

No

!"

geography merely can ex-

haust that sublime utterance of


a moral, social, intellectual

world of

came

all

human

his parish

and

its

content.

He

spiritual Atlas.

was

The

elements and relationships be-

and remains his debtor.

But why repeat the eulogy of history to-day, and


spend time in thus weaving garlands for the grave
of the dead;?

Would

it

not be better to be engaged

THE PERSONAL EQUATION


making history than

in

worshipping

in

29
If this

it?

were the only plain issue of the alternative,


certainly; but

it

is

and we simply venerate

not,

order to more surely re-create.


the genius of Methodism's

need to know the

yes,

If

we would

in

grip

modern evangelism

we

prototype.

If

life history of its

we would know its twentieth-century potentialities


and prospects, we must know the purposes and pracWesley

of John

tice

says

become

for,

Wesley disseminated.

is

What

he purposed,

thing to be coveted, so
Fitchett, " is

it

sought to do,

seems to me," says Dr.

it

some burning conception of what John

We

don't realise yet what he was,

was

Wherever he saw
dead hand

despised.
in

"

Wesley's

chief

characteristic.

need he grappled with

he disregarded

Methodism the

of to-day.

like

The

it.

time's traditions he

spirit

of

And

1787

my

coat."

is

Jotham Preston, a Yorkshire

preacher, used to say, " I love Methodism.

me

present

In him Methodism was up to date.

essential

spirit

is

come."

Adaptation

"

it

The

"

proposes."

and what he did, and the outcome that


to

Wesley was.

is

Me

His character has

What he

characteristics.

its

will do.

and

Kealing

Professor

as

Wesley was Methodism concentrated

"

thodism

And

the

local

It

fits

every one could see that his

MARKS OF METHODISM

So
coat

was by no means

fit.

The

either of rigid fashion or tight

history of Methodism, has demonstrated

and

possession of the power of re-adjustment

its

art

Changing

of adaptation, to a remarkable degree.

circumstances in the social structure, different stages

of progress and civilisation, and varying forms of


constitutional
difficulties to

government

the mission of

to

insuperable

Methodism..

naturalised itself everywhere, and

ready

no

present

changed

has

apparently ever

is

welcome the unforseen event.

table not only to a

It

adap-

It is

state of the great public

mind, but to the new demands of our swiftly moving public necessities.

Twenty-five years ago Great Britain was deploring the wretchedness and sordidness consequent upon
the

then

from a

prevailing

social

religious standpoint,

The

conditions.

result,

was the indifference of

the masses to matters of spiritual import,

Manchester, Edinburgh, and other huge

London,

cities

were

confronted by the problem of religious indifferent-

Then Methodism,

ism.

instituted

stinct,

opened
but

it

its

true to

its

mission and in-

new movement.

It

not only

church doors and announced a service,

did something to create a real religious interest

among

the

masses of the people.

It

exemplified

what Hugh Price Hughes designated "the philan-

THE MODERN MISSION


To-day

thropy of God."

or

commendation.
a

created

that

department

special

Methodist enterprise.

work needs no plea

inherent

Its

*i
o

have

necessities

and recognition

in

workers are counted by

Its

thousands, and six figures are required to express


its

The

numerical significance.

ment

"

has been true to

"

Forward Move-

ever

pretension-

its

forward

and always movement.

And

opportunity for concentration be the

if fuller

clamant need of to-day

for example, our large

if,

towns are demanding a greater variety of work,

and of

better quality

which

necessity will

some modification of the big Circuit system

demand
if

the

growth of intelligence, of education, of social

as-

piration,

demand a

etc.,

manysided

pulpit that can teach as

that can see

well as preach,

and lead; or

work must take under

social

not only the lapsed and ignorant, but that

area of population to

flowing

current,

whirling eddies

Be

it

so.

if

of

Here am

purview

still

life is a

larger

swift

quicksands

and

will

still

send me."

I,

the

adopt we do not prophesy


it

our

these be the need! of the hour

What new methods


old spirit,

perilous

its

if

and fully met, then, says Method-

to be fairly faced

ism, "

whom modern

full

newer Methodism
but, if

go on

it

will

be true to the

" devising

means

that

MARKS OF METHODISM

32

It will use old

the banished be not expelled."


if

new means

they are good,

they are better, and

if

any means that are Christlike and

Now
re-

effective.

Metropolitan

ments

and

that suggestions for the re-adjustment

whether

organisation of our mission machinery,

in

means

" are

we

before us, shall

Behold the

of vision?

"

Provincial

or

Move-

Forward

not extend our line


are white unto har-

fields

vest.

We
ism

will

have the masses who need the newer Method-

we have
is

means

the

to

meet

wanting to achieve triumphs worthier of the

honoured name we bear,

and the

" present

age

"

we

if

serve.

always accountability, and

ability is

portunity

dare not

is

always obligation,

wait

for

Our God makes

we

if

not

shall

op-

we

empty churches and burdensome

debts to constitute the call to

He

we make,
With this we shall
we are well able.

the profession

go up and possess the land, for

And

Only the

this need.

the pace

"go forward."
at our peril

we

loiter.

marches to-day with quickening step and accele-

rated rate.

Let us keep time to the music of His

glorious

purpose.

We may

march

Methodism's movement

is

His.

as torch-bearers at the head, or as

pall-bearers at the bier.


tion our election.

Let us make God's

Keeping up with

selec-

the measured

THE MODERN MISSION


beat of His step

we

too shall

know

measure than our founder dxeamt


of

all is,

God

is

with us."

in

of,

33
yet larger

that

"Best

MARKS OF METHODISM.
III.

THE FACT OF A FELLOWSHIP.

"Ye,

up a

as living stones are built

spiritual house,

holy priesthood."

"

Still

whom

And

verifies the old."

new Gospel

S.

be a

Peter.

holy lives

Reveal the Christ of


the

to

the letter told,

-Whittier.

" Methodism made one

striking

the institutions of the Church,


so far as I

know,

in

in

and original contribution


the Class-meeting.

to

Never,

any Church has there been so near" an

approach to the ideal of pastoral oversight as the Class-meeting,


in

its

perfect form provides

munion of

saints

which

is

and

it

also provides for that

almost as necessary for the strength

and the joy and the harmonious growth


fellowship with God."

com-

of the

Christian

Dr.

life

as

Dale.

MARKS OF METHODISM.

The Fact

III.

Fellowship.

of a

way to England as the Fernley Lecturer,


Dr. Fitchett made a Canadian call en route, and

On

in

his

one of the consequently inevitable speeches, our

General President said, inter

manner

inimitable
lost

secret

have

lost

"

We

secret

For

and the

fireside idea.

beside

your fellow-passenger.

in the

same

no

direction, but

intercourse

There

is

much

with

his

in

or

own

some way we
There

of the earlier years.

are two ideas of the religious life.


car idea

in,

must seek to recover the

of our success.
the

and

alia,

There

is

the tram-

In the tramcar you

You

are

all

sit

going

you have no fellowship,


interest

in

religion of that sort.

one

Then

another.
there

is

the fireside, where the family meet together, where

MARKS OF METHODISM

38

they are at home, where they converse one with another of

where a

common
common

warm bond

common

pursuits and

relationship binds all together in a

Now, Method-

of love and fellowship.

stands for that type of religion.

ism!

Methodism

the fireside idea.


rests

and ends

in

is

It

common, talking them over and

emphasis

That

The

" living

identified

human

that

!"

"

The

secret of the

What

are the marks

"

by which the

manual

this

" spiritual

and attested?

Let Mr.

in

"

house

holy temple

Wesley,

distinctly " differentiated from,

In his

"

simple as

"

happily possible to

is

may

Plain

Methodists"

formed.

means our search

of our success

as the

glance

Mr.

all

us.

other

And

to " recover the lost secret

be amply rewarded.

Account

Wesley

forcible,
"

be

by which the buliding grew into a

religious bodies "


this

may

"

architect of the building, tell us.

at the processes

by

is

are the " signs

stones

of religion."

fireside idea

of success

What

!"

What

it ?

other religious bodies, the

all

upon the

lost secret

earlier years

of

what

is

puts upon an articulate religious con-

it

sciousness and
"

from

it

stands for

a family with inte-

getting mutual help and sympathy.


differentiates

and

interests,

how

of

the

states,

the

first

People
in

called

language

as

"Society" was

One and another and another came

to us


THE SOURCE OF THE SECRET
asking what they

being

should do,

39
on

distressed

every side; as every one strove to weaken, and none


strengthen,

to

them,

hands

their

We

God.

in

Talk together

Strengthen you one another.

'

as often as

you can.

for one another, that

And pray earnestly with and


you may " endure to the end

They

and be saved."

advised

said,

But we want you

'

wise to talk with us often,

and quicken

direct

to

like-

us in our way, to give us the advices which you

know we

well

for

us.'

and

need,

asked,

'

pray with us as well as

to

Which of you

me know your names and


did

But

so.

desire this

places of abode.'

soon found that they were too

for us to talk with severally so often as they


it.

So

told them,

'

If you will

Thursday, in the evening,


time with you in
advice

Let

They
many

wanted

come together every

I will

prayer,

Thus

can.'

gladly spend some

and give you the best

arose, without

any previous

design on either side, what was afterwards called a


Society.

It

thus uniting together

quickly

answered the

Upon

therein.

observe,

'

This

is

appeared that their

reflection,

the very

end
I

proposed

could not but

thing which was from

the beginning of Christianity.' "

Such was the


ties "

and such

rise in
is

1739 of the "United Socie-

the secret

whether

lost or

no

MARKS OF METHODISM

4o

of Methodism's success.
but

is

it

The

phase.

formed,

its

assumed

it

Three years after

more

its

origin being as follows

"Let
week

give a penny a

to

"

was then

There was a

consider

member

every
till

"

Bristol meeting-house,

and the Society being called


said:

differentiating

within the " Society

" class "

somewhat heavy debt on the

member

an "open secret";

is

also a " family secret."

inception

its

It

the debt

it,

one

of the Society
paid."

is

It

was

remarked that many were poor, and could not afford


it

therefore,

said

proposer,

the

the poorest with me.

will call

and make up what they cannot


Soon

likewise.

who

after,

Wesley

"

Put eleven of

on them weekly,

such and such persons did not live

we want."
Thus it came

me

"

The persons
informed me that

says,

acted as collectors or leaders

It struck

Others did

give."

they ought.

a,s

immediately, this

is

the very

thing

first

to pass that the " class,"

was purely a

which

at

financial expedient, developed into

an agency for shepherding the flock and fostering


the spiritual life of the early Methodists.

month

later

Wesley divided the London Society on the

same

principle.

with

men

to

" I

He

remarks in connection there-

appointed several earnest

meet me,

to

whom

and

sensible

showed the great

difli-

THE "CLASS" A CORPORATION

had found of knowing the people who de-

culty I

my

sired to be under

they

all

agreed there

them

to divide

he

much discourse
could be no better way to come
After

care.

thorough knowledge of each person than

to a sure,

And

41

adds:

into classes

like

can never

" I

those at Bristol."

sufficiently praise

God

for this, the unspeakable usefulness of the institu-

having ever since been more and more mani-

tion
fest."

The subsequent

" class

meeting

"

was simply an

embodiment of the purposes and combination of the


plans
"

proposed

Society

"

and

by
the

the

formation of

" Class."

It

was

both
at

the

once a

means of Christian fellowship and guardian oversight.

Thus

the class meeting stands as the ideal

expression of the secret of Methodism as a living

organism and corporate community.


verts, as conscious
\vere conscious

members of the body of

members one of another.

body was compacted by


plied,

and,

every part,

The new

con-

Christ,

The whole

that which every joint sup-

according to the effectual working of

made

increase of the

body unto the edify-

ing of itself in love.

This

is

Methodism's essential secret of success.

We

are not called to private pieties, but to a sancti-

fied

membership

in a living

organism.

The

indivi-

MARKS OF METHODISM

42

dually saved

man

own and

for his

is

introduced into a Society where

others'

is

called to the

true " ecclesia

The

sanctities of fellowship.
"

good, he

" is

the

Household of God," where provision must be made

for the nurture of the family as such; where breth-

much

ren mingle not so

and

Christians,
"

as brother-men as brother

Each

his friendly aid affords,

And

feels

"

Thus

his

fellowship

brother's care."

is

one of the four corner-stones

of the Methodist building,"


puts

Professor Green aptly

a,s

John Wesley was powerfully influenced by

it.

William Law, and the Methodist's obligation to the


Mystics

is

not yet estimated

though, fortunately,

from the one accusation brought against the Mystics

viz.,

their

God

in

Nature, but not so often

in

"that they have sought and found

own

souls

and

the souls of other

saved at

its

munion of

in

men and women," Methodism was

inception by
Saints."

It

its

practice of the "

has rather taught, to quote


" the

Professor Tasker's fine phrase,

that

end of Christian communion

attained

enables us to find

Our

God

is

highest

when

it

in the souls of other people."

spiritual experiences are

by the fusion of soul with


to isolate ourselves

Com-

from

deepened and enriched

soul.

spiritual

We

cannot afford

communion with


SOUL ONLY KINDLED BY SOUL
The

others.

Methodist's fellowship becomes a

evidence

Christian

43

an

new

argument from experience.

With Hartley Coleridge

He knows

"

By saints
And he can
"

my

their

way

to God."

say, with the certitude of Novalis, that

moment

belief gains infinitely the


its

can con-

truth."

Iron sharpeneth iron," and " two are better than

Solomon;

one," says
saints
"

was trod

who knew

of old

vince another of
"

the path

For our learning

a blessing.

is

They

just so, the very fellowship of


is

it

written,

Lord spake often one with

that feared the

another," and " These continued steadfastly in the


Apostles'

and how great the

delight,

lowship

had
and

The

"

secret

secret

known

" Saints' fellowship, if it

alive,

Well,

modern

as

the

to

"

of Methodism

Piety,

Prudence,

Bunyan, Wesley found that

like

Keeps them

sweet

profit of that early fel-

enchanted ground

a
Charity and,
a.

How

fellowship."'

be managed well,

and that

in spite of hell."

writer said:

"Did

we but

turn our thoughts to the possibilities that reside in


class meeting,

fellowship meeting, prayer meeting,

or in the mutual, quiet, intimate converse of


souls in yet closer circles

early days of

Methodism

as

was customary

mated
in the

the special gains to Chris-

Marks of Methodism

44

tian character

and usefulness would be simply

as-

tounding."

Dr. Fitchett's expression of fear recalls Dr. Dale's


familiar recognition and merited admonition

Methodism

This,

realised.

of

its

Church fellowship

the idea of

I believe, is

In

largely

one of the chief secrets

The Methodist people

rapid growth.

how

should take heed

is

"

wonderful a growth.

they treat so precious and

It

renders possible a far more

effective fulfilment of the pastorate,

perfect realisation of the

and a far more

communion of

than

saints,

are possible in any other Protestant community."

Other great theologians and leaders have recognised in the class meeting an approximation to Apostolic Christianity,

and a unique opportunity for the

expression of Christian life as alone realised in fel-

We may

lowship.

cite

Professor Tholbuck,

who,

spending some time in Oxford for the purpose of


consulting

its

libraries,

which he said was


primitive

Then,

" the

attended a class meeting,


nearest

in addition to thus

centre

modern

of

Church fellowship he had ever enjoyed."

making provision for

prime necessity of Christian


is

reproduction

life

of

many

points

dare not ignore.

life,

the class meeting

of power

which our

MANIFEST ADVANTAGES

45

Against either sacerdotalism on the one hand, or

on

rationalism

the other,

what better

safeguard

could be provided or antidote offered than this


tution,

insti-

which stands a bulwark of spiritual freedom,,

and an evidence of religious life?

To young
to

it is

our training ground

quiet resting place becomes precious van-

its

tage ground on the side of

God and

Indeed, the class meeting

world.

Methodism.

It is

the spiritual

the Sedan of

is

our strongest bond of union, our

means of

most

efficient

most

effective instrument of pastoral oversight.

future

culture,

spiritual

and our

meeting, raised chiefly


never tried
speaking,

it

it

Eccentric leaders

members have done

petrified

no sense

a,

thing,

either

Generally

their

much by some
and garrulous,

work.

In

many

become a stereotyped

without vitality or utility

fellowship, but a fetish.

the revolutionary iconoclast

ment.

class

meeting has not received fair

instances the class meeting has

and

aright.

has been judged too

It

failures.

fossilised

by those who have

or never tried

the class

treatment.
its

Its

the future of Methodism.

is

There are many objections current against the

of

and

of us, amid the excitement and turmoil of

all

life,

converts

demands

in

Consequently,
its

displace-

MARKS OF METHODISM

46

Let us remember that the type


needs strengthening.
needs rectification,
be welcomed

if

is

right.

commends

"

it

to

he will only lend a hand.

privilege uses it;


it.

only

Where imperfection obtains,


not abstention.
The critic is

Experience created the class meeting


forces it;

It

duty en-

and profitableness

re-

Forsake not the assembling of your-

selves together, as the

manner of some

is."

METHODIST WORSHIP,

" God's worship

He

That only
Writ

inspires

in the red-leaved

Return to

Him

is

and His bright words,

volume of ihe heart,

dew

in prayer as

to

heaven."

Bailey.
Worship the Lord

Bow down

before

in the

beauty of holiness

Him, His

glory proclaim

Gold of obedience and incense of lowliness


Bring and adore Him, the Lord

is

His name

J.

" Bright Thy presence when

it

Spirit

when

it

Monsell.

breaketh,

Lord, on some rapt soul apart

Sweet Thy

S. B.

!"

speaketh

Peace unto some lonely heart


Blest the raptures

From unaided

lips that start.

But more bright Thy presence dwelleth


In a waiting, burning throng

Yet more sweet the rapture swelleth

Of a many voiced song


More divinely
Glows each

soul glad souls

among."

Anon.

METHODIST WORSHIP.

The

universal discussion on Methodist

hymnology

has evoked already a revival of the complemental


question of Methodist liturgy.

In that
there

is

phrase, " Let us

fine old

a depth of

not yet fathomed.

worship God,"

meaning which many of us have


Evidently

its full

not yet comprehended by us.

It

is

significance
true,

various forms of an " Order of Service,"

Divine Worship

is

" worship," is

we have
in

which

the object, but, whether any of

present " modes

our

is

"

is

the

fittest

expression

of

a question burning in the hearts of not

a few of our people.

Our modern term


word

"

worthship

"

"

i.e.,

of God's worth or due.


is

worship
the

" is

the

old

Saxon

adequate recognition

In Old Testament usage

it

sometimes modified to indicate mere respect or

METHODIST WORSHIP

50

homage;

generally and essentially,

but,

it

man

can

Accordingly,

the

ployed to indicate the supreme homage


offer

God

to

adoration.

viz.,

em-

is

most rigid instructions were given concerning wor-

They had

ship to God's ancient people, the Jews.

a ritual so complete that

ployed every faculty in

it

appealed to and emexercise,

its

gives us

it

down

clearly lays

of worship, fundamental and


to its teaching,

of the

human

New

to this, the

a few actual directions

nevertheless,

or

details,

but,

According

sufficient.

realise

to

Testament

certain principles

we may regard worship


soul

it

In apparent contrast,

there could be no deviation.

and yet supplementary

and from

as the effort

and partake of the

Divine Presence and Life.

With

combined characteristic righ-

the necessarily

teousness of the Old Testament idea, and the spiritual nature of the

New

sume that we are

in

Testament conception,
full

and out of

agreement,

knowledge and perfect

this

assumption arises the

question here to be discussed, "

Worship be
service?"
in

other

I as-

How

can

this

best set forth in our Methodist

With modes of worship such

Divine

Church

as obtain

Churches we have nothing to do,

for illustrative purposes, in this article.

save

LINGERING
The

51

Methodist Church service consists of

usual

the following order


called), reading,

Hymn,

hymn, sermon,

prayer,

anthem

collection,

(so-

hymn and

In some of our Churches a Psalm

benediction.

and

chanted,

LIMITATIONS

in

some others a Psalm

is

read in

is

Kindergarten fashion, alternate verses being taken

by preacher and congregation.

Now, we may
pression of our

Does

it

finition

ask, is this a perfect or fitting ex-

homage

to

God, of

God's worth?

adequately meet the requirements of our de-

of worship?

Does

Surely there

instincts?

satisfy even our

it

is

human

a more excellent way,

and therefore

submit the urgency of reform and

modification.

venture to say that worship, in the

foregoing order,

is

related

to

a secondary place

and consideration. The sermon is usually the strong


point, and the other exercises are frequently spoken
of as "the preliminaries" i.e., pre limen ouside

the threshold

or as the " incidental " parts of the

though worship were the hearing of something addressed to the intellect and conscience
service, as

merely.

plead, therefore, for a truer conception

of worship, and a higher standard of

its

expression.

There are two grave charges which may, with a


considerable show of reason, be urged against our
present

mode of worship.

social; and, second, that

it is

First,

that

unsesthetic.

it

is

anti-

METHODIST WORSHIP

52

PUBLIC WORSHIP SHOULD BE SOCIAL.


Provision
necessity
is

it

should,

and

therefore,

yet, in

recognised

modem form

what

Examine

made

be

for

of service

prevailing

the

this

chief

methods of Christendom, and the lack of communion


is

a defect glaringly apparent in

Church the

In the

all.

Roman

In the Anglican

priest does everything.

Church, the priest and people take equal part, by

means of a

liturgy

but,

even in this division of

labour, the social idea finds

the

little

liturgy provides for one

consequence of

its

expression, because

and, in

service only,

constant repetition., this

ever

is

exposed to the constant danger of becoming a bald,


hackneyed, and mere mechanical exercise, and, therefore,

hindrance

than a

rather

help

social

to

worship.

In Methodist, and, indeed,


formist

Churches,

the

in

almost

minister

all

Nonconprays,

reads,

preaches, and generally conducts the service,

ing the congregation to sing three or four

and

to contribute

to sing

an anthem.

conspicuous by

its

to

the collection,

leav-

hymns

and the choir

Manifestly, the social element


absence,

and

in

this

respect

is
it

may compare

with Romanism, as in both instances

the

does

minister

the people a

nearly

everything,

mere fraction of the

leaving

service.

for

WORSHIP A COMMON WANT


A

fundamental element

social instinct,

and

in

and, unless this

seems to

me

it

is

our

is

fully recognised
true

its

may we

impossible; yea,

not go further, and say that

the presence of

makes public worship a common

instinct that

necessity,

is

nature

provided for, public worship, in

fittingly

significance,

this

human

53

inasmuch as

in

common faith, our


common thanksgiving seek
it

our

common prayer, and our


a common expression ?
But what is " common " in our ordinary Methodist
Even the hymns are the choice of the
worship?
and generally

preacher,

selected

to

illustrate

his

The prayer has in it


little common thanksgiving or common supplication.
How, indeed, can it be otherwise? The whole consermon, as also

the lesson.

is

gregation are dependent, in this holy exercise, upon


the

mood

of the minister rather than their

necessity.

In what sense can

or public prayer?
all, "

it

be called

common
common

It is the parson's prayer,

after

said privately in public."

The preacher

said " to lead the congregation

but can they truly follow, unless they

in prayer,"

know where he
But, alas

is

is

going

some know too well where he

is

going,

for he generally travels north, east, west and south


visits

" all

sorts

and conditions of men

"

and

at

METHODIST WORSHIP

54
last,

he asks

having exhausted himself,

make up

in giving

what he has failed

and then ends with the Lord's Prayer.

God

" to

in asking,"

As

to the

sermon, the one remaining portion of this service,


this also

belongs to the preacher of necessity.

his very

own

Again,

if

or should
worship

"common," but
this,

is

It is

be.

social,

should be not only

it

As

also responsive.

illustrative of

take the Scripture patterns, notably the account

of the ideal worship of heaven as portrayed in the

Revelation of John (see chaps,

v.

and

What

xix.).

was the Psalter but a Temple Service-book compiled


for responsive worship

Of

course, I

may be reminded

that Christ

warned

us against the formality of Jewish ceremonies and

Pharisaic

worship,

appreciate

any

must

form
have

the

of

and

worship

some
or

and

form,
is,

quite

apprehend

and

The danger of using


is
formalism, but we

objection.

the present contention

seventeenth

the

matter

of

whether the forms of the

eighteenth

centuries,

which

may

prove to be the formalism of the twentieth, shall be


simply tolerated on this false plea, while our com-

mon

instinct is craving a satisfaction

not supply.

which they do


FORMALISM

V.

FORMS

55

There may be as much formalism- and idolatry

upon our bare forms of worship

reliance

use of the most ornate; and


fancies he has never

bowed

as superstitious in his

him

served by

in

many

in

as in the

who
Baal may be

a Methodist,

the knee to

hatred of superstitions ob-

other communities as a Puseyite

himself.

What

is

of liturgies
exclusively

there to prevent our compiling a series

compendium

sort of Christian year

from the Bible

if desired,

although

do

not see that portions of that noble liturgy of the

for

Church of England could not be modified


the possession of no

it

mere section of the Church

is

so

that the objection which I have stated to the present

Anglican mode could no longer be urged against


the

of responsible worship

principle

ciple

manifestly good; what

is

and generous application of

minister,

the

it

and also a place for

neither

prayer of

presentation

would be more

liturgy

minister

the

in

tion of worship.

a broad

is

If such a series of

a place for a " free prayer

personal

which

we need

prin-

compiled and adopted, each liturgy

services could be

having in

it.

The

of

nor

can

" silent

prayer

particular
the

"

by the
"

for

requests,

extemporaneous

embody

our

service

harmony with our present concep-

METHODIST WORSHIP

56

In the " Order of Public Worship," as adopted

by the Methodist Episcopal Church of America, a


provision

may

is

made

that lessons taken from, the Psalms

Many

be read " responsively."

gations attempt to do this in Australia

of our congre;

but the books

used most frequently are Bibles or Psalm Books

found

in the pews.

and the

number,
feeble,

reading

frequently

is

Even

and unsatisfactory.

the hands of every


all

These are usually inadequate

member of

if

in

halting,

a book were in

and

the congregation

should read, the difficulty would be only partially

met, for two reasons

First,

many

of the Psalms are

John Wesley saw

not adapted to such reading'.

and eliminated some of them from the


second and greater

numbered
the

in our

Hebrew

difficulty

is

this,

Psalter.

that the verses as

Bibles do not usually conform to

parallelism.

The

reading, therefore,

is

alternate, but not responsive.

Anticipating

criticism,

know

that

Jesus said the noblest worship

God

seeks

is

worship

shall

the

and truth

in spirit

be told
worship
the free

spontaneous outgoing of the heart in sincerity.


reply, let

pleaded

me

for.

say that this

Because

to old traditional

have so

little

forms

He

is

exactly

is

here

did not inculcate slavery

which,

meaning and

what

In

less

in this instance,

can

charm; because

He

THE

SOUL'S USE OF SYMBOLS

He

did not inculcate silence; because

word

one

against

concerted,

did not utter

disciples in a

He

as

said

"

our trespasses,"

which
not

against

forms that

when

idolatry of them,

of God.

plead

Therefore,

spirit

the

man

heart

pression

He

did give

common

prayer,

" give us," " forgive us

mode of worship

for a

once spiritual, free, and social.

at

is

common form

Our Father,"

common

responsive,

worship; but, because, on the contrary,

His

in

Christ

Christ

symbols couched

in

but the

protested,

God

demanded worship

forms,

song,

using

speech,

in

by the hu-

as a Spirit

that secured, the heart rinds

adequate

was

It

they were enthroned in place

adoration of
;

57

its

own

ex-

and

doctrines

and posture,

as

transient vehicles of worship.

PUBLIC

WORSHIP SHOULD BE
BEAUTIFUL.

Among

the changing conditions of our time there

growing appreciation of culture and

is

wave of

higher
classes,

sublime

sestheticism

education,

is

fine feeling.

passing over us.

technical

instruction,

We

have

and

art

by which the sense of the beautiful and


is

developed.

Consequently,

keener sense of the incongruous

and

there
in our'

is

modes

METHODIST WORSHIP

58

of worship this must be reckoned with, and


ship

not to be vulgarity, must be provided for.

is

Hailing this

as

spirit

an

we

ally,

shall

find

splendid helpmeet of the religious feeling.

some have

fully

Church

in the past

has not so recognised

few Methodist people of

communion of

could

and

a result that

this is

with equanimity.

It is

I,

as such,

it

fine sensibilities

aesthetic

Pain-

Not a

consequence.

their fathers for

some

find

in

have

left

one where they

enjoyment

in

worship,

for one, cannot look

upon

cheap to sneer, and say they

are not of us, or they would not have gone

us

it

knowledge that our

to record their

and we are suffering to-day


the

wor-

if

that they were not worth keeping,

from

and so on

but they are the very people that are worth keeping,

many

and they

left us

to find in

another fellowship what ours did not supply

with

We may

worship as

ritualistic

account for

its

denounce the revival of ornate

and sacerdotal, but

motive or

for our perception,

its

of

artistic

culture

-a

religion

means much

taste.

movement

in

It

little

is

the

the direc-

movement which ought

be pressed into religious service.

whom

this does not

meaning, and says

judgment, or

spiritual aspect of a great

to

pang and heart-break,

satisfaction in Divine worship of their aesthetic

cravings.

tion

will

The people

to

always feel as the

WHY
Jew
for

did,

that

use,

its

THIS WASTE?

nothing

and they

59

too rare or too precious

is

moreover, feel that

will,

community

the office of religion in a

is

it

to cleanse the

emotions, to elevate the thoughts, to stir the finer

impulses of men's hearts, and to lead

bosom of

to the

we cannot

this

ciate

and

the

Infinite,

neglect or despise, but

true

in

accessories,

it

God
may

Since

in spirit,

is

True

but

it

may, therefore

it

not

worship act independently of

all

and even

by no means follows beIndeed, if

ought.

stands related to two worlds, and


plex, not pure spirit merely,
his

"

of forms however beautiful,

sanctuaries ?"

cause

must appre-

utilise.

and must be worshipped

the soul

souls

whatever does

arid

But the question may be asked,


Spirit,

human

it is

is

man

therefore com-

a question whether

worship of the Divine can be wholly as spirit to

spirit.

The movement

of

the

soul

towards

God

creates certain corresponding emotions of a temporal

and natural kind


physical sight

is

kindled

with a central heat


creased

emotional,

exciting,

and

and even

our whole nature glows

this insight

when our approach

to

God

expression; hence the helpfulness,

if

and

fire is in-

finds

sensible

not necessity,

of embodying our spiritual ideas in outward befitting forms.

For example,

let

religious

awe

strike

METHODIST WORSHIP

60

and

us

we

instinctively

making

more

the idea

real

and

human

our purely

in

so,

Patriotism

while our affection seeks

makes.

it

But

if it is,

and

in the

sary

from

a national flag,

in

expression in the gift

is

not very beautiful, very helpful,

bless the Lord,

votion

with each

be told this

it

now under

The Psalmist

tual worship

its

realise it?

may

matter

smaller gift.

relations

embodied

is

the

is

which we desire

His passion and sympathetically

to recall

other.

in

posture

What

vivid.

Supper of our Lord but a form

And

very

our

kneel,

Is it?

discussion, very neces-

upon

called

sentiment.

all

him

within

to

and surely our homage should be no

What
is

is

is

falsely called

a,

purely spiri-

an attempt to evolve and sustain de-

isolated

powers of the

spirit

that are

never meant to act alone.


If our worship

is

to

bring into service

faculties, including imagination,

of the sublime,

we

eloquence,

rarest

finest architecture;

to

shall

the

want the
most

all

our

memory, and sense


richest poetry, the

ravishing;

music,

and

and unless these forms are given

our spiritual ideas, our

"

hours of insight

be few, and we shall lose half the

human

"

will

joy, the

noble inspiration and exquisite pleasure of worship.


"
is

Am

reminded," asks Dr. Martineau,

called the simplicity of the early

"

of what

Church; of the

LOVE KNOWS NO WITHHOLDING


upper chamber

in Jerusalem, or the

unadorned pro-

seucha, that sufficed for Apostolic disciples

but this was at least the best they had


is

asked from

Less than

us.

this,

In ages and

has ever given.

61

Yes

and no more

true devotion

no-

among

sects

where

the sanctuary has been bare, so too, has been the

private house;

but

it

is

ever a fatal sign

of

art

decaying into luxury and religion into contempt-

when men permit

the house of

God

to

be meaner

than their own, when they allow to their domestic


pleasure what they refuse to their collective worship.

The only constant

rule

is

votion

is

selves,

of our best selves, to God."

offering of

the

have done

little

ourselves,

this,

it

may be

more than touch the general

for others to accept


in these

must now

what of worth there

poor words, and

gestions should stimulate thought


cussion,

my

de-

of our whole

principle of worship in this paper; but I

leave

that

if

these dim, sug-

and provoke

dis-

mind's present purpose will be achieved.

The way may

then be clear to elevate to higher sig-

nificance the function of public worship

and

this

accomplished, an ideal Order of Service in Methodist

Worship

is

within the range of practical realities.

METHODIST MUSIC.
I.

THE EVOLUTION OF THE GERM.

"A

given to the people which

new musical impulse was

gradually changed the

face

public

of

throughout

devotion

England."

J. R. Green.
^

TT

" Indeed, by common

consent,

for

congregational singing,

qualities which
enjoin the Methodist

united, exact, lusty, modest, brisk and spiritual


his (Wesley's)

famous rules so strongly

services were unrivalled."

T&

F.

" Those who to-day


and proclaiming

"IP

"Jf*

feel

their

L.

Wiseman.
TT

music telling out their deepest wants

praise

of the

good and holy,

might

recognise in the music echoes of the songs which broke from the
lips of

Miriam and David, of Ambrose and Gregory, and those

simple peasants

who one hundred

years ago were stirred to

on the moors of Cornwall and Wales."

S, A.

life

Barnett.

METHODIST MUSIC.

The Evolution

I.

of the

G ERM.

the purpose of this paper to trace, though

It is

in merest outline,

the characteristic spirit,

sources,

and development of our Methodist Psalmody


put
ist

music.

The

present

Tune-book

most highly-organised,

fullest,

it

is,

and how
Music

is

grew,

it

is

came

my

the

But not

to be

whence

in

native to Methodism.

song

necessities

of

how,
the

in order to

new

latest,

so

much

its roots,

theme.

One

scarcely needs

reminded how that Methodism, was

to be

born

it

how

as

is

and consummately-

finished product of a long process.

what

or, to

the evolution of Method-

in shortest phrase,

it

spiritual

literally

meet the conscious


experience

which

followed the Pentecost of 1738, a new vocal expresE

METHODIST MUSIC

66
sion

was imperative

how, in providing for

this re-

quirement, the Wesleys were thrown upon their


resources

and how,

sification, their

Charles

own

in a remarkable output of ver-

supply met the clamant need. Hence,

Wesley's

immortal

and

creations,

John

Wesley's sublime translations, were soon on universal lip in the

marked and general outburst of song

which everywhere accompanied the


in field-preaching or in

The new

occasion taught

and

new

duty,

difficulty.

and with

the

Methodist hymns was their intense passion.

one absorbing theme Avas the

"

Who

unexhausted Love

!"

can sound the depth unknown

Of Thy redeeming

grace

Grace that gave Thine only Son

To
And
"

save a ruined race

!"

the one passionate yearning

was

Oh, for a thousand tongues

My

to sing,

great Redeemer's praise

The glories of my God and King,


The triumps of His grace
!

its

The one domi-

characteristic feature of

" Infinite,

whether

meetings of the Societies.

emergence there arose new


nant note

revival,

early

Their

WHAT WESLEY FOUND


Jesus

the

Name

67

that charms our fears,

That bids our sorrows cease


'Tis

The
to

music in the sinners' ears,"

problem, was to provide appropriate music

wed

such

vitally

experimental

and

strongly

emotional verse, and the problem was neither easily


nor speedily solved

but some good music was ready


If the words of

many

of the metrical Psalms were not to his mind

and

for Wesley's immediate use.

he pronounced Sternhold's version


dalous doggerel
to

"

nevertheless,

" miserable, scan-

many of

the tunes

which they were sung were suitable and

Among

composers were some whose work

their

immortal.

effective.

Thomas

Tallis,

William

Birde,

is

John

Day, Ravenscroft, Farrant and Dr. Croft had conspicuously contributed to the devotional vocal music

of the

times

while

Henry

Purcell,

before " de

parting to that blessed place where only his har

mony can be
ligious

exceeded," had left a rich legacy of re-

music.

Perhaps some of

been saved from obscurity in

its

their

seizure

music has

by the Wes-

home to. the hearts


new Methodist hymns,

leys as the vehicle for carrying

of the people the words of the

This much

is.

certain, that the best of the old

Psalm

tunes of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries were


revivified in the Methodist revival,

and even now, we

METHODIST MUSIC

68
shall not

willingly

them

let

"

instance such tunes as

die.

F arrant,"

One need
" Angel's

only

Song,"

"Canon," "Bedford," "York," "Winchester


Old," " Irish," " St. Magnus," " St. Matthew," " St
Ann," and " St. Mary," to show our obligation to
Tallis'

this well-spring.

But the old existing Psalm tunes are not the only
fount of early Methodist music.

was

the

discovered, in

mation,

by Wesley

so

second source

then current folk songs of

As by Luther

old England.

in the

European Refor-

the Methodist

in

Revival,

there was no hesitation to appropriate such secular

melody
ity,

the

as,

by

its

simplicity, strength

was deemed helpful

name of God,

to the cause.

laid his

and popularWesley,

hand on the best of

in

the

most popular musical compositions of his day, and


set them, to his

own and

his brother's

hymns, declar-

ing in set terms that " the devil wasn't going to have
all

the best music."

story

to

the

effect

There
that

is

a well-authenticated

once in Cornwall Charles

Wesley, while preaching was interrupted by a gang


of half-drunken sailors, who, in their anxiety for a
spree, invaded the preaching-ring,
lar music-hall

Dawson."

howling a popu-

song of the period known as

The preacher stopped

short,

"

Nancy

and,

ad-

dressing his interrupters directly, honestly told them

A CORNISH IDYLL

69

that he liked the tune of their song, but cared not

and he offered

for the words,

and

vice,

to their

melody

they would meet him later, and

if

ness of the preacher,

Arrested by the frank

was forthwith

the offer

Wesley supplied the

Charles

-ery soon,

ser-

go home and write some new verses

to

sing their tune to his words.

cepted.

to conclude the

to the strains of "

whole crowd, with the

verses,

Nancy Dawson,"
were singing a

sailors,

ac-

and
the

hymn

inviting song in praise of Jesus as " Soul of Music,"


at the
ist

same time embodying the marrow of Methodand

doctrine,

incidentally

preacher's act of accommodation.


tains the following stanzas
" Listed in the

Why

cause of

the

The hymn

con-

sin,

should good be

Music, alas

justifying

evil ?

too long hath been

Pressed to obey the devil.


"

Come,

let

us see

if

Jesus' love,

Will not as well inspire us

This

is

the

theme of those above,

This upon earth shall


"

fire

Who of His love doth once


He evermore rejoices;

us.

partake,

METHODIST MUSIC

70

Melody in our hearts we make,


Melody in our voices.
"

Then let us in His praises join,


Triumph in His salvation

And

ascribe to love divine

Worship and adoration.


"

Heaven already is begun,


Opened in each believer,
Only believe, and still sing on,
Heaven is ours for ever."

Should the foregoing incident prove

sufficiently

interesting to arouse one's sense of musical curiosity

to enquire

may be

like,

such desire

readily gratified by listening to the children's

play-song,

which

what the tune was

"

Here we go round

practically the

is

first

the mulberry-bush,"

four lines of " Nancy

Dawson,"
In such material as was thus already to hand
"

Psalm tunes and folk songs

"

the

initial

and tem-

porary need of early Methodism was provided for


but the quantity

was limited

in

variety,

and the

quality was lacking in vivacity, consequently tune-

books,
request,

a,s

well

as

hymn-books, came into general

and so John Wesley

set

of supplying his people's want,

1742

himself to the task

and published,

in

CHARACTERISTIC PUBLICATIONS
"

71

Collection of Tunes, Set to Music, as


THEY ARE COMMONLY SuNG AT THE FOUNDERY."
This

tions

the prototype of

is
it

is

the true

Methodist music.

reveals

a,

a third source

cell,

of

collection of 39 melodies,

mentioned

those already

including

the nucleated

gerrrn,

It is

subsequent publica-

all

and,

further,

whence many of the

That source

of the old Methodist tunes were drawn.

was the German chorale, with

its

finest

massive movement

and exquisite beauty, specimens of which are strewn


throughout

the

present

Tune-book.

Methodist musical collection


to the antiquarian,

is

This

valuable

though four of

its

first

now only

themes have

been harmonised by Dr. Bridge for the present book

"

viz.,

Marienbourn

"

(336),

"Amsterdam"

(591),

"Islington" (483), "Old 115th" (595).

Of

vastly

more

importance

musician

is

Mr.

appeared

in

1761, under the title:

"

Wesley's

the

to

Methodist

next publication,

which

Select Hymns, with Tunes Annext, Designed CHIEFLY FOR THE USE OF THE PEOPLE
called Methodists."

It

comprised 149 hymns, preceded by 115 tunes, en-

titled "
lev's "

Sacred Melody," with which was bound Wes-

Grounds of Vocal Music," and

his

well-known

METHODIST MUSIC

72

directions for singing.

It

contains a characteristic

preface, in which Mr. Wesley says

" I

have been

endeavouring for more than twenty years to procure


such a book as

But

this.

in vain

masters of music

were above following any direction but their own.

And

was determined, whoever compiled

follow

my

mending our

direction, not

them down neither

ting

At length

were.

among

desire

our

The volume
This,

The following
which are in common

are pricked true, exactly as I

congregation
likewise

therefore,

tunes, but set-

have prevailed.

They

us.

should

better nor worse than they

collection contains all the tunes

use

this,

is

may

sing them.

small, as well as the price.

recommend

preferable

to

all

others."

This book has almost disappeared


of a later edition, under the

mony,"

still

abides.

It

title

but a reprint

"

of

Sacred Har-

embodies Wesley's

Melody," with a figured bass and several


thems, such as

"

To

hymn

"

Sacred Melody

an-

"

and highest court of appeal on

matters of typical early Methodist Psalmody

as

Sacred

Vital Spark," added.

as the final authority

therefore turn.

"

we must

It discloses six characteristic features

marks of Methodist music:

FUNDAMENTAL FEATURES
1.

Most of

73

the tunes published in 1742 (the

Foun-

dery Collection) again appear.

Adaptations from Handel's

2.

" Soldiers

place.

del march,
is

sung

ing

and

"

of Christ, Arise,"
Christ the Lord

to the martial strains

Hero Comes

accident,

"

oratorios find

"

of

is

set to a

is

Han-

Risen To-day

"

See the Conquer-

an arrangement suggested by an

Mr. Wesley says that when he was

for

preaching in Ashbourne Market-place in 1774, the


people " mistook the tune, and struck up the march

from

'

Judas Maccabeus.'

know

when

not

heard

so agreeable a sound."
3.

To

these adaptations were added original con-

tributions, for

by

this

time Methodism had produced

When Wesley was

musicians as well as poets.

What are you to do with a musician at the


who has given up all for Christ ?" he replied,

asked, "
theatre
"

Let him write tunes for the Methodists

?"

Thus

J.

F. Lampe, writer of burlesque and comic opera, and


'author of a

manual on

"

Thorough Bass," became

Methodist music composer.


included in
4.

"

Sixteen of his tunes are

Sacred Harmony."

fourth feature of the book

use of the minor

mode 39

couched in the minor key.

Wiseman has

out

is

its

the frequent

115 tunes are

But, as the Rev.

pertinently pointed out,

when

it is

L.
re-

METHODIST MUSIC

74

membered

hymns

that one-fifth of the

in

Wesley's

book were penitential hymns, for which the minor

we

scale is so singularly suitable,

are not surprised

that one-third of these tunes should so pleadingly

Of

wail and tenderly sob.

can

ample of
find "
"

march and

strive,

My
5.

But

this.

Happy
God,

The

am

6.

The

that

and

Finds the Grace," and

Wesley

when he

instinct

art,

a fair ex-

and strength of melody

simplicity

He

dominant melody.

and by

" is

Thine," sung to minor tunes.

other characteristic,

musical

Leoni

strange to modern ears to

is

Man

the

"

exult.

it

the minor key

course,

was

followed

is

antrue

insisted

upon having

justified

both by wisdom

Gluck and Wagner being

his witnesses.

outstanding feature of the music of

last

this publication

formal or structural marks,

its

is

nearly half the collection being in triple time, and


quite frequently the last line repeating
sionally a half-line

Needless
often

to

to-

such repeats were

poetic sense,

to

decorous

occa-

a kind of coda.

tunes with

say,

destructive

disastrous

as

and

worship.

and

sometimes

The tune

"

Job,"

for example, in more recent days, has wrought sad

havoc on many an innocent congregation


ing of such lines as

Thy

dictates

and obey

"
"

To
;

in the sing-

Thy dieto hear


Thy love hath an

hear

or "

PERSISTING TYPES
Thy

hath ani-mating power

love

line as "

happen with such a


and defence

may be

Oh

or, "

"
;

75

What would

!"

Thou

art

my

for a mansion in the skies.

better imagined than described.

survival

solitary

"

is

hymn,

" All

it

does service as an ordinary " com-

tune

"

but usually to the distress of

preacher, and discomfiture of people, as

ample, a

more ex

final

line

more

this:

like

collection of tunes

"Hotham"
My

Lover of
old

which

Soul

!"

He Comes";
is

"And more

ex

feeling

for

many

"

Helmsley

now

but

reasons,

" Jesu,

" (200), really

inseparable

"Old Twenty-third"

and fervour;

possible tune to "

appear in the present book

essentially typical of characteristic

dist

Method-

this typical early

John Wesley's tune to

(106),

English hornpipe,

"Lo"!

for ex-

in,

exults our joy."

Notable excerpts from


ist

special

its

Hail the Power of Jesu's Name." Some-

times, however,

mon metre

de-

this

Miles Lane," the use of

almost uniformly restricted to

is

1'

The almost

modern Psalmody of

in

cadent type of tune

which

bulwark

must

"

Derbe

ever

"

Come, Let Us Anew."

from
(362),

Methowhich,

(930),

remain

an

the

only

Several

others also find a place in the appendix.

The next advance and


red Harmony " was

natural successor of " Sac-

METHODIST MUSIC

76
"

The Companion to the Wesleyan Hymnbook."

But what would any theory of evolution be without


Therefore,

a missing link?

of Methodist music

deemed wholly
ever,

dismiss

if in

tracing the ascent

miss this link,

unscientific

me

Let

shall not be

with the brief mention that

it

how-

rather,

ap-

it

peared in 1846, and contained 228 tunes, with referAfter thirty years of good

ences to the words.


vice
"

it

ser-

was superseded by the

Wesleyan Hymnbook and New Supplement,

with Tunes,"
when an entirely new feature marked Methodist
Psalmody, the hymns and set tunes appearing toThis collection

gether.

great

advantage,

vance upon

its

and

arrangement was of

and showed

predecessors

considerable

but

ad-

can scarcely be

it

said to have been an entirely satisfactory production.

Doubtless the

difficulties

in

greatly embarrassed the committee.

died as the work was in progress

Mr. Geo. Cooper, died before

its

its

editorship

Dr. Gauntlett
;

his

successor,

completion

the third editor, Mr. E. J. Hopkins,

had simply

carry out and supervise other men's plans.

In Psalmody, as in other subjects,


"

Our

little

They have

systems have their day


their

and

day and cease to be."

to

A METHODIST TUNE-BOOK
And

the

so

more

77

thought and growing

spacious

experience of modern Methodism


to-date

demanded an upmanual of devotional music, which is now

supplied us in the present production

The Methodist Hymnbook, with Tunes."

"
I

have very imperfectly

sketched the

traced the course of this great river.

streams have flowed into

and

rise

Many

tributary

which, perforce, in so

it,

hurried a survey, could not be noticed.

me

In closing, permit

a current objection.

taken to

its

title,

and

twofold exception has been

its

and

cated.

is

1.

It

Methodist

2.

It is

incorporating:,

it

title

in

more

amply vindi-

spirit,

preserving

does, the best typical tradi-

as

it

does,

traits

the

distinctive

Hymnals of both

the

elements

of the best collections of

minor Methodism, as embodied

The

Methodist in scope, adapting and

and characteristic

tive

title, "

surely

is

claim stands

its

and presenting, as
tions.

claim to that

That

Methodist Tunebook."
than justified,

disarm the criticism of

to

in the very excellent

Bible Christian and

Primi-

Methodist sections of the Methodist host.


can only hope that

may be

at once cordial,

its

reception and adoption

common, and complete.

our Methodist devotional fellowship

present-day possibilities,

we

shall

is

If

to realise its

need the richest

METHODIST MUSIC

78

poetry and the most ravishing music as


and,

these

" times

Lord

we

"

of

provided,
refreshing

our

"

from

its

exponent,
"

and

presence of

the

hours of insight
the

shall be both multiplied

and magnified, and

shall raise to vastly higher spiritual signification

the eternal but progressive function of divine worship.

METHODIST MUSIC.
II.

THE FUNCTION OF THE ORGANISM.

"

" There

is

in Souls a

" Music

is

the child of prayer, the companion of religion."

sympathy with sounds."

COWPER.

Chateaubriand.

"
to

kind of inarticulate, unfathomable speech which leads us

the edge of the Infinite, and lets us for

into that

some moments gaze

Carlyle.

" Thou, Lord

art the

Father of music

Sweet sounds are a whisper from Thee

Thou hast made Thy Creation all Anthems,


Though it singeth them silently
;

But

What

guess by the air of this music


raptures of heaven can be,

Where

And

the sound

the music

is

is

Thy

marvellous

light out of

stillness,

Thee."

G.

S.

Faber.

METHODIST MUSIC.

The Function

II

The proper
is

of the Organism.

place of music in Methodist worship

a subject around which gathers a growing diver-

sity

of opinion, and the object of this paper

discuss the question,

Why

is

to

do we employ music

in

worship, and what ideal purpose


serve

is

it

supposed

to

Bearing in mind our definition of worship, as


stated in a previous

human

soul

to

realise

presence and life,"

from

this point

study,

it

as " the effort of

the

and partake of the Divine


will

be

readily

understood

of view, what limitations are at once

put upon our conception and treatment of music in

Methodist worship.

METHODIST MUSIC

82

But

first,

what

Technically, simply a

music?

is

combination of sounds

in succession

having the pro-

perty of pitch, and so arranged to please the ear


nevertheless, there remains a something unexplained

by the terms of such a

To

definition.

speak, then,

of music in the cold formula of acoustics as "


brations of air caused by strings or pipes "
to stutter the alphabet of

how

describe

nerves

language.

vibrations

these

and penetrate

ecstatic motions,

its

the

pass

spirit,

moving the mind

peopling the imagination

with

vi-

is

only

Who

shall

auditory

the

stirring

it

with

to noble thoughts,

fairy fancies,

and

ploughing the depths of human nature with inexpressible

As

feelings?

What science brings


asks Newman. " There
"

make them fourteen;


so vast an enterprise

yet music

"

so

little ?"

are seven notes in the scale


yet

!"

what a slender

outfit for

Poetic perceptions as voiced


stars

singing

or Shakespeare's penetrative lines that

Harmony
But while

Doth

miraculous.

much out of

so

by Job's description of the morning


together

is

is in

immortal souls,

muddy vesture of decay


hem us in we cannot hear

this

grossly

it;"

or philosophical theories like Plutarch's doctrine of


the music of the spheres;

ception of the "

World

or Schopenhauer's con-

as Will

and Idea," are

all

THE SOURCE OF MUSIC


suggestively
yet exquisite

summed up

in

interpretation

Carlyle's

83

massive and

things are melo-

" All

See deep enough, and you will see musi-

dious.

cally; the heart of Nature being musical."

But the universal heart


scientist,

of

man

passes beyond

philosopher, or poet, and bows itself be-

fore the rhythmic

harmony of human

nature,

and

turning from, the world without finds in the world


within the same principle

of

its

being.

embedded

Therefore, for

the best definition of music


indefinite

pressing
tears,"

"

viz.,

is

in the essence

all practical

that which

purposes,
is

at least

"the language of emotions," ex-

thoughts that

oft

do

lie

too deep

for

and interpreting feelings which mind cannot

penetrate nor words express, as Richter says, " Tell-

ing of things

we have

not:

seen and shall not see."

Without discussing any theory of the probable


origin and ultimate function of music, the immediate source and ideal purpose of music in Church
worship to-day appears to be this When the Christian worshipper comes to the sanctuary, and the idea
of God, the Father Almighty, looms upon his mind,
:

and the sense of


presses upon his

religious awe, yet


heart,

words are

filial

all

confidence,

too poor, and

hence he calls for the loud cymbals, organs, harps,


psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs to express his
adoration and thanksgiving.

METHODIST MUSIC

84

Obviously, the function of religious music has an

beyond

end

aesthetic

faculty.

merely ministering

of

that

church

is

and though we ask for music

means

as a

to

an end.

adapt our definition


thus

not a concert hall,

in worship,
this

its

is

connection

is

only

let

me

the religious language of

may be regarded

the religious emotions, and as such


in

it

the necessary modifications

to

Religious music

In

the

to

twofold aspect, subjectively and objectively.

Music thus ministers

expressively and

worship

in

impressively.

IT

EXPRESSES THE SPIRITUALITY AND


THE SOCIABILITY OF WORSHIP.
(i)

The

earliest

and

Spirituality.
of music was the offer-

finest use

ing of praise to the immortals by which in stately

measure and solemn hymn the soul of


out after God, feeling after
find

Him;

flying

into the spiritual

Him,

if

man

haply

reached
it

might

from the material and finite out


and infinite. And to-day the func-

tion of music in Christian worship is to express all

that

we mean by

soul

the

Divine around and within


est points
test

of view.

Of

us,

contemplation

from highest

all the arts,

music

of

the

to deepis

and the only adequate means of such a

the

fit-

realisa-

SONG INJ WORSHIP


Music

tion.

is

85

dematerialised energy.

It

lies

be-

tween the spiritual and physical worlds, partaking

Music may be pros-

of both, but limited to neither.


tituted

base uses, and

to

" procuress

the lords

to

temple, sky, and heart


tion as the fittest

lies

means of

divine art

this

of

hell

become

but in every

"

the assertion of
praise, prayer

its

func-

and puri-

fication.

Every worshipper may not audibly


every singer devoutly worship;

two are one.


the

sing, nor does

ideally,

yet,

these

In connection with the dedication of


"

Temple we read of those

who

ministered be-

fore the tabernacle of the congregation with sing-

To

ing."

perceive the significance of the record

need to catch the central idea of priestly

King David formed

one of which was em-

ployed in musical service only.

own

leaders,

sacrifice.

the whole tribe of Levi into a

guild of various branches,

their

we

The

Levites chose

some for vocal and some for

in-

strumental music, " and Chenaniah, the chief of the


Levites, was for song; he instructed about the song,

because he was skilful."

formed with
xxiii.

5),

its

And

so

the guild

was

choir of 4000 performers (1 Chron.

organised to maintain the worship of the

Lord, not only for the people, but with the people.

Music

is

no more

to

God than

the fat of lambs

and

METHODIST MUSIC

86

the blood of bullocks,

save

as

it

is

the

channel

through which the heart's emotions go out to God


as an acceptable sacrifice of praise.
"

God
The

asks no taper lights on high surrounding,

No

dolorous chant -nor organ music sounding,

priestly altar

Nor

and the saintly grave

incense clouding up the twilight nave."

Certainly not,

they symbolise

if

but

severed from the reality which


if souls

monies, the sacrifice of song

What

pleasing.

del's confession

are true to eternal har-

acceptable and well

is

a fine attestation of this is

when asked

to describe his feelings

while writing the "Hallelujah


think

see

all

heaven

Chorus": "I

before

me,

did

and the

God Himself."

great
(2)

did

Han-

Sociability,

i.e.,

the solidarity, the unity

AND VARIABILITY OF WORSHIP ACCORDING TO

OUR NECESSITIES AND MOODS.


Worship

is.

a social, quite as

function, and unless this


tingly

provided for,

It is the

is

this

scarcely

as a personal

fully recognised

public worship

is

and

fit-

impossible.

presence of this social instinct that makes

public worship a necessity.


to

much

How

music ministers

fundamental requirement of worship need


be instanced.

"

Speaking to one another

IDEAL CHURCH MUSIC

87

psalms and hymns and spiritual songs."

in

command

may be

injunction

apostolic

this

for " antiphonal

"

The

tortured

into

singing, I modestly sug-

gest that congregational singing


idea.

While

is

here the essential

ideal of worship in this respect

is

music

of such a kind that " everything that hath breath

may

join

in,"

and a

slightly inharmonious,

an

than

bution

" joyful
is

even though

noise,"

more appropriate

of

attitude

decorous

and

contri-

disap-

pointed listening.

But
far

probably,

the

ideal

from being without a

much

all

church

is

must be

choir.

The

fellowship
socially

worshipping

choir,

very

first

would be pretty
of the

principle

then of necessity

There

expressed.

church,

is

its

worship

no medium

through which, our common hopes and aspirations, our


characteristically

deepest feelings, find their neces-

As

sary social expression other than music.

Barnett has aptly put


fitted to

men

it

A.

S.

Music then would seem

"

be in this age the expression of that which

in their inmost hearts

have ceased to express

most reverence.

this,

Creeds

and have become sym-

bols of division rather than of unity

Music

is

parable, telling in sounds which will not change of


that

which

is

worthy of worship,

telling

it

to the

hearer just in so far as he by nature and cireum-

METHODIST MUSIC

88
stances

is

able to understand

feeling of

common

life

it,

but giving to

that

all,

and assurance of sympathy

which has in old times been the strength of the

By music men may be helped

church.

Who

is

not far from, any one of us, and be brought

again within reach of that tangible sympathy

sympathy of
"
liar

How

"

remarked Beecher,

how

often,

in

been, not of what

my

prevailing thought

was going

would be sung

to say,

My

consist largely of the singing of


full

own pecu-

in his

looking forward to the

Friday night meeting, has

that

the

their fellow-creatures."

often/'

vein,

hymns

God,

to find

but of the

prayer meetings

hymns which

my predominant thought in
gatherings is Oh that sweet,

of praying, and

nection with our


ful singing!

!'

'

are

conjoy-

"

IMPRESSIVELY
worship suggests the mood,

music

in religious

prets

the thought,

inter-

and inspires the action of the

worshipper.
(i)

Of

all

Its

power of suggestion.

the agents of suggestion, music

There

powerful, because most direct.


thetic in

heaven and earth than

philosophies.

And

is

music leaves

is
is

the most

more

dreamt of
all

aes-

in your

her sister arts

MYSTIC POWER

ITS

89

behind in her direct action on the imagination.

me remind you

of three illustrations of

Let

Recall

this.

Goethe's picture of Faust lifting the cup of poison

As he does

to his lips.

so, the

His

with a chorus of angels.


locked

Easter bells are heard

door

heart's

is

un-

sacred memories of the past dart before him,

reminding

deeper sounding

bell,

when

days

of the

him;

and prayer was

Browning's Pippa, and see the

moving about the

city,

little

"chimed
bliss."

the

Take

Italian mill girl

singing her

simple songs,

which by suggestion turned the thoughts of men and

women, including a Bishop, an


lovers, at critical

moments

artist,

and guilty

new channels.

into

"

One

day," remarks Mr. HaAveis, " noticing a very poor

and aged woman

in tears

'

Oh,

she replied,

sir,'

'

but she was alluding to

Sterndale Bennett

Me Out

How

!'

spoke

that blessed, blessed

song in the middle of the prayers

no more

and enquired the cause of her

to her at the close,

grief.

during the service,

'

Lord,

She could say


an anthem by Sir
!'

Thou Hast Searched

"

often

is

the

mood of

a service determined

by the impression created by the organ voluntary and


the opening

hymn ?

How

little is

it

recognised by

preacher, organist, choir, and congregation that to


their

music

is

given the keys of the kingdom of

heaven to open and to shut

METHODIST MUSIC

90
(2)

power of interpretation.

Its

The music of
thems

the church

hymns,

chants and an-

should be interpretative of the great

thoughts underlying them.

spiritual

Not infrequently, most

unsuitable tunes are sung to the hymns, and the chant


is

regarded as an unintelligible gabble, with a musi-

cal

cadence at the end of every two

Out of

lines.

jingling rhymes the most charming music cannot pro-

duce great thoughts, but presupposing that the words

sung do, as ought

be always the case, represent

to

some worthy aspect of


" perfect

music

tional singing

religious

truth,

noble words

set to

may be

expected.

then with

"

ideal congrega-

emphasise con-

gregational singing as the sine qua non of social worship.

Still,

one cannot

belittle the excellent interpre-

tative gifts of a specially

trained choir.

great

and beautiful thoughts

hearts

is

into

To

other

people's

the office and privilege of the choir in that

part of divine worship allotted to the anthem,.

anthem

sing

is,

or should be,

some great thought of

The
God

illumined by music's art, and interpreted by souls


that perceive the inner contents of both words

and

music, thus approximating to Beethoven's conception

when he
to

wrote, " Nothing can be

draw nearer

to diffuse

to the

more sublime than

Godhead than

other men, and

here on earth these godlike rays

among

SERVICE SUCCEEDS SACRAMENT


What

mortals.

is

this

all

(referring

to

his

91

own

majestic music) compared with the grandest of all

masters of harmony above ?"

Its power of inspiration.

(3)

We

sing not

pagans,

as

and

more than a refined amusement.

music

religious

Some

is

of the world's

grandest preaching has been heard and felt in the


singing of the noble hymn.

When

music moves to deeds.

men

said, "

spoke after
their

The

subtle triumph of

one Greek orator spoke

What a noble speech !" but when another


him men looked on each other, grasped

swords and

So have we
and moving;

said, "

Let us march on Macedon."

scores

of times under the subtle

felt

influence

clarion sound ceased,

of

religious

music.

and we went forth

to

The
march

Witness Augustine's introduction of Christianity into

England, the

"

Lollards

"

of Wyclifs time, Luther's

hymn, the Methodist Revival,


attest the

all

of which events

power of Christian music and

its

inspira-

tion in worship.

In view of the foregoing positions,

my argument

best

ing desiderata.
motive,

by calling attention

can sum up

to the follow-

Religious music should be ardent in

appropriate

treatment.

in

character,

and

artistic

in

METHODIST MUSIC

92

Ardent

(i)
"

"

Sing unto God," says the Psalmist.

melody
is

in motive.

in

The

your hearts/' adds the Apostle.

Music

the fountain of music.

is

Making
heart

heart throbs.

great master has given the secret of artistic playing

thus:

"Educate

the heart; educate the heart."

Religious music should Be

2.

Appropriate in character,
subservient to the end of worship.
ness should be religious
this reason, that

but

we

Our
do>

daily busi-

not think, for

we should bring our bank-books and

ledgers to church

even the collection plate jars upon

us at times, as savouring of something not exactly


in its

proper place.

ways

classical

to

Similarly classical music

music;

al-

but a gavotte, or invitation

a waltz, or an overture to an opera,,

cellent as music,

is

while ex-

would be utterly out of place as

an opening voluntary, an invitation to prayer, or


as an aid to the distinctively religious feeling, just

as either "
or "

He

was despised and rejected of men,"

Yankee Doodle

!"

would be out of place as a

wedding party are leaving the church.

The musical

portions of our service should be in

keeping with the highest thoughts and deepest feelings in worship.

Time was,

when worship was

doleful, as though brightness

not

many

years past,

and

THINGS LEFT BEHIND


joy were allied to

93

Happily, we have got

sin.

and our

for the most part, of this characteristic,

danger

hymns which

extreme

an opposite

in

lies

lack meaning

An

simply maudlin.

Paxton Hood to the

rid,

so-called

in

and music, which are

anecdote

told of the late

is

he had engaged to

effect that

preach at a strange church, and as he entered the


pulpit,

who announced

the deacon

giving, out those very lurid lines,


\s

to think
"

My

the

which

hymns was
surprises

it

were ever intended for singing


thoughts on awful subjects

roll

Damnation and the dead,"

when Mr. Hood


exclaimed

"

started up,

Stop

stop

and

My

in his shrillest tones

thoughts do not

roll

on any such subject


"

'

Come,

let

us join our cheerful songs

With angels

(3)

round' the throne.'

Artistic in treatment.

Worship should be the

We

"

antithesis

of vulgarity.

should worship the Lord in the beauty of holi-

ness,

and behold the beauty of the Lord

yet,

when

one thinks of the mass of vapid, frivolous trash that


passes

muster

for

religious

music,

one

wonders

whether a bald, austere, Puritanic service would not

METHODIST MUSIC

94

now

be preferable to the mawkish drivel

frequently

incorporated in church worship.

Be
art

is

it

remembered the schoolmaster

now

the people's minister.

is

To

abroad, and
prince

and

plebeian, scholar and artisan, philosopher and farmer

The development of
now popular perception

alike, she holds out her gifts.

the artistic faculty

and the

and appreciation of the principles of beauty

insis-

tently call for an elevation of the ideal in the type

and

style of

Music

in

Methodist Worship.

METHODIST RENEWAL;
OR

MAY WE

EXPECT

ANOTHER

REVIVAL?
I.

THE EXPRESSION OF

IT.

" Methodism was born


'

to flow in

Wesley's

thawed and unloosed, and the waters of

came

to see that

it

unless I could get the old


is

life

began

quickening and beneficent ministry."

"

was

heart

Genial currents that had been

strangely warmed.'

frozen were

when John

J.

H. JOWETT.

was not worth while being a Minister


Wesleyan note into

my

ministry.

It

so easy to lapse into comfortable ways and lose the old appeal

of the Gospel."

W.

J.

Dawson.

METHODIST RENEWAL;
Or,

MAY WE EXPECT ANOTHER


REVIVAL?

I.

The

The Expression

question

is

asked

the dispensation of the

" If

Holy

of

we

are living under

Spirit,

moves individual men and moulds


ments,

why may

not

we

in

It.

and

if

He

still

move-

religious

Australia realise our

prayer, and witness the old-time and otherwise re-

peated experience of religious revival

?"

With

chas-

tened, throbbing, yet docile hearts let us approach


this timely
it

to

and all-important question, and discuss

in sober reason

answer

it

or

and calm

faith.

rather silence

it

It is not

by

enough

replying, in

the language of pious platitudes, that our Father

knoweth the times and seasons, and that we must

METHODIST RENEWAL

98

wait

therefore
revival

God

pleases

it

to

God now, and waiting

pleases

it

until

send

grieves

Him,; or that we must tarry for Pentecostal baptism

and an outpouring of the Holy Spirit; Pentecost


has come, and the Spirit then given has never been

withdrawn
ing

we

or that without Christ

we can do

He

are not without Christ,

is

noth-

with us

al-

ways, even to the end.

enough

It is not

to rest in

a slough of sluggish

content by quoting our Master's words

bloweth where
its

laws

and

and

principles,

authority has told us that

"

The wind

for meteorology has

listeth," etc.,

it

the

we can

same

highest

discern the face

of the sky, and ought therefore to read the signs of


the times.

True, the kingdom of heaven cometh not

with observation
or

lo,

there

probabilities

!"

neither can

we

say,

"

Lo, here

but although the laws of spiritual

may

not be so easily discoverable as

averages in the sphere of physical operations, nevertheless,

if

the golden thread of a Divine purpose

and plan runs through the warp and woof of Divine


government and spiritual
to expect that

it

life, it is

not unreasonable

will reveal its presence

somewhere

and somehow.

And

surely the query

in Australia ?"

"

comes home

May we
to

expect a revival

our hearts with fresh

FLOOD-TIDE EVERYWHERE
force, precise point

99

and persisting pressure, by the

facts submitted in the present experience of large

communities in Christendom

the

factual history of

Wales, of large spaces of Great Britain, America

Our English exchanges have brought us

and India.

the gratifying intelligence that the net increase in

Wesleyan Methodist membership for the year

British

ending

last

March

is

and the Primitive

10,705,

Methodist Conference also reports an increase

of

These are only typical

over 5000 souls for the year.

instances; and from our reading of the signs of the

times

we

are warranted in the conclusion that two

things are self-evident to-day

viz.,

that the world

needs and the Church wants a revival.


local

demand

conditions

desiring

it.

May we

While eschewing paltry

it ?

platitudes,

despise cardinal commonplaces


forget,"

let

us

recall,

in

and our hearts are

this,

expect

Our own

we dare

not

therefore, " lest

simplest style

we

and with

directest purpose,

some fundamental facts on which

religious

so

manded,

revival,
is

The Acts
lation,

earnestly

desiderated and de-

based.
of the Apostles furnishes us with a reve-

not only of the primitive type, but of the

permanent ideal of the Christian Church.

The

life,

experience, conditions, and history therein disclosed

METHODIST RENEWAL

ioo

axe not incidental


sential

always

kingdom of

save

form, at times

in

Now, we

in spirit.

therefore,

if

our

same

are in the same

and

and history

fall

spiritual laws

experience,

life,

es-

same dispensation of

grace, under the

the Spirit, governed by the

but

short of Apostolic Christianity, in richness of content

and fulness of power,

and

result,

that deficiency

in intensity,
is

expansion

evidence of a deplor-

able decadence, a reversion to type, and

is,

so far, a

revelation of abnormal Christian conditions.

But that apostolic


revival,

course

arithmetically

How
tude

life

of

was a record of perennial

constant

expressed

conquest,

ever-increasing

in

quickly the 12 became 120;


"

then 3000

then 5000.

Lord added unto them

daily,"

were multiplied greatly."


of the term

" revival "

We

result
ratios.

then a "multi-

read that

and that

" the

" the apostles

Evidently, the contents

contents

which appear

to

us to-day as phenomenal and occasional then constituted the

normal plane and constant condition of

Christian experience.

Christian life

is

organic, and

Church was the organism, and hence it grew.


Development, reproductiveness, and expansion are
the

the inevitable

marks and natural

While increase
vival,"

it

is its

is

results of life.

no infallible criterion of

indubitable sign.

Some

" re-

additions are


NUMBERING ISRAEL
may

only accretion, and Church agencies


tiplied while spiritual strength

101
oft be mul-

and religious

we

decline; and, on the other hand,

vitality

recognise that

no tabulation of mere numbers can represent the


whole realised spiritual work of the Church.
revival expansion will tell

sion ought

We

to<

its

own

and expan-

tale,

be our present experience.

do not overlook our

" casualties,"

comprising

and so

deaths, removals, emigrations, backslidings,

To

forth.

fill

Still,

up these gaps and repair the

of

loss

our annual wear and tear requires considerable additions, in order to avert deplorable decrease.

Our

own age like every other has its specific difficulties


in the way of numerical progress, and these, with a
great organisation like Methodism, even in this State,
are huge,

combined, and recurrent.

these drawbacks

and

difficulties,

.But,

despite

our numerical ad-

vancement should and might be vastly greater than


it

is

or has been.

There

are

more unconverted

people in Australia to-day than when our

first

re-

commenced here. And when we


on our modern advanatges our growing in-

ligious operations
reflect

telligence,

numerous,

our increased

material

well-established,

appliances,

and

our

commodious

churches and schools, and better adapted agencies

we must confess

that these ought to yield a greater

"METHODIST RENEWAL

io2
result than

Our

at

any previous period

and high

tion,

Our present condition

"Oh

of a past generation:

forc-

by a Methodist

ibly reminds us of a prayer uttered

as

grave

is

consecra-

humility,

calling forth

resolve.

must be up; the

our history.

or limited increase,

small additions,

cause for alarm,

in

Lord, our next move

state of things

now

about as low

is

can be."

it

But

" revival " is not exhausted

Religious revival

expansion.

ecclesiastical existence.

is

by mere external
always more than

means additions of

It

souls,

not symbols merely, of converted men, not collective

machinery.

Indeed,

chinery just

now

Many

is

if

in

we mistake
excellent

our ma-

not,

state

of repair.

departments of our Church organisation are

and gratifying

realising manifest

within

results.

bounds and under the

the

We

jurisdiction

our Australasian General Conference 2567


dist Churches, with

ship.

We

teachers

and scholars.

Metho-

at public

wor-

and

Foreign Mission

Our

Our Christian Endeavour

numerous and

their " clear

vitalising,

mise.

640,855 attendants

of

have 2442 Sunday schools, with 221,534

societies are

ing

have

active, bent

purposed goal
evangelising."
spirit

is

full

"

of

Our

upon achiev" organising,

Home

and

of service and pro-

great secondary schools are flourishing,

INADEQUATE RESULTS
and, what

is

better,

there

is

103

a spiritual uncontent

and aspiration, a soul hunger and Christly passion


distinctly

But numerical as well as

recognisable.

financial, mechanical, or

to be realised

by us on

even spiritual increase ought


a,

vastly grander scale.

The

fisherman estimates his success not by his desire to


catch

nor his knowledge of waters, nor by the

fish,

fathoms of net put out into the deep, but by the

make you
you with men

fishers

The Lord added day by day unto

them."

quantity of

of men."
flock."

"

fish

" I will

" I will increase

That promise
it

he takes.

is

not fulfilled?

unto us and our children.

like a

Why

is

METHODIST RENEWAL;
OR

MAY WE

EXPECT

ANOTHER

REVIVAL?
II.

THE NEED OF

IT.

" The

Fruits of the Revival were seen in Prison Reform,

in

the agitation of the Emancipation of the Slaves, in a Revival of


Political Ideals."

Sylvester Horne.

"Although
victories

the career of the elder

Pitt

and the splendid

by land and sea that were won during his ministry form

unquestionably the most dazzling episodes in the reign of George


II.,

they must yield,

think, in real importance to that religious

revolution which shortly before had begun in

preaching of the Wesleys and Whitefield.


large,

The

creation of a

powerful, and active sect, extending over both hemis-

pheres, and numbering


its

England by the

consequences.

influence

upon the

amount and

many

It also

millions of souls,

exercised a

spirit of the

was but one

profound

and

lasting

Established Church, upon the

distribution of the moral forces of the nation,

even upon the course of

of

its political

and

history."

W. H.

Lecky.

METHODIST RENEWAL;

MAY WE EXPECT ANOTHER

Or,

REVIVAL?
The Need

II.

of

It

Wesley once said that he did not wish Methodism


to

become a

and especially not a party

sect,

The

matic theology.
not granted.

It

to say further

and

Christianity,

part of that desire was

has become a

" I

first

want
still

it

But he went on

sect.

to be a revival of spiritual

continue to influence, perhaps

That must

permanently, the Christian world."

be the object of our hopes and labours.

show

to the world that

sect; that

men

is

it

that

it

Luther once said,


years."

But

Methodism

is

We

still

must

more than a

a life to influence all thought

is

in dog-

and

all

a revival of spiritual Christianity.


"

this

No

revival lasts

has

remained

more than
five

times

thirty
thirty

METHODIST RENEWAL

108
years,

and

spiritual

and

throwing out branches laden with

is still

fruit

and leaves for humanity's healing,

will continue

Vine.

do so while

to
"

Given the

warmed

it

abides in the

heart," the world-wide

parish will not perish for want of the evangel of


life.

Methodism,

dominated by the

ideally, is

spirit of

evangelism, her supreme and conscious effort being

To

evangelistic.

this she is divinely

commissioned,

and must be fully committed. While maintaining her


organised

life

must

she

throw

aggressive labour for others.

Church

professional

Methodism begins
to die.

is

an

herself

Methodism

ever

as a purely

When

impossibility.

to live to herself,

into

she will begin

generating centre of spiritual forces, she

must be judged by her influence on her times and

And

surroundings.

her

life

in

proportion to the vigour of

within will be the evidence of her power

without.

The

motive,

measure, and means of her

growth and expansion are resident within her very


life itself.

She cannot

rest

on the laurels won without losing

them, and without confessing that her work

and her end near.

Methodism

if

she

The world can


is

is

done

very readily spare

unable to meet the demands

of a time like this by doing righteous and valiant

THE PROPLEM OF POPULATION


She

service at the present hour.

forces

hostile

is

109

confronted by

enormous strength and immense

of

magnitude, which plainly indicate that her work


only begun and will not be easily completed.

There-

Her

fore, she dare not live in a fool's paradise.

faith lives by conquest.


sity

Before the inherent neces-

and prime importance of renewed

vived vigour,

all

is

life

and

re-

other desiderata fade into relative

insignificance.

The sublime achievements

of past progress, with

the opulent advantages of the present position, call

forth devout gratitude and justifiable gratification

but

be

it

relative.

remembered

The

after

that,

object in running a race

to run fast, but to run fastest.

progress

all^,

Is

is

is

not merely

Methodism

ting abreast of our ever-increasing population

get-

As-

suming that Methodism reaches one-seventh of the


population of these States, the Christian Church
still

in

a,

minority, and no Christian

of faith in his Christ's Gospel,

who has
sion,

a sincere

sympathy with

can fold his arms in a

who has

a spark

and no Methodist
his Church's mis-

spirit of

sweet content

while more than half his neighbours are

God and without hope in the


may manipulate the census of

is

world.

without

However we

religious worshippers,

the fact remains that the masses are outside God's

METHODIST RENEWAL

no

The

House.
"

motto of Lord John Russell,

political

Rest and be thankful," will never do for


Great and varied as

is

the activity of

us.

Methodism,

the agencies of evil against which she contends are


far

more subtle and

country, in

it

is

are

the

fruits

and

belligerent,

Dead

is

Unbelief, dogmatic

and a worldliness charitable to

bine to slay vital

our

Sea, on whose dreary shores


indeed.

bitter

and credulous to good,

scepticism,

Privileged as

sleepless.

like

Herod

spiritual

com-

and; Pilate,

Sensuality,

religion.

and materialism lounge

evil

in clubs, pollute

our literature, and parade our thoroughfares.

Vice of every form finds congenial atmosphere,


while

sin,

mocks

the

Christian
the

and

sesthetic

zeal

refined,

and laughs

No

religion.

a,t

gross
the

and

bestial,

purity

longer need

of

cynics

the

quote

amended fourth commandment of Clough's

vised " Decalogue


"

"

At Church on Sunday

re-

to attend

Will serve to keep the world thy friend

"

for

no longer do the people even go to worship

from

the

the

motive of respectability.

modern conventional code of

is just

a,s<

the " smart set,"

to
it

respectable to play golf, give a card party,

or hold a reception on

become

According

to

Sunday

many merely

The Holy Day has

a holiday.

THE CALL OF GOD

These very conditions constitute a challenge, and

Methodism

a call to

God.

The

to put

on the whole armour of

country's spiritual exchequer

modern extremity

immediate task, precise and pressing,

of death."

which

We

Her

Methodism's opportunity.

is

renew the Nation,

The

low

is

" to create a soul

to

is

again

beneath the ribs

need a revived sense of God, in

mammonism and

drunkenness and

sensuality,

gambling, political jobbery and commercial chican-

The

ery will receive their death-blow.


ticism

and

Haeckel

of

the

sordid

Blatchford are only evidence of our


spiritual

forces,

and they

will

all

of controversial polemics.

city street

and

solitary

of

socialism
lost grip

of the

be better answered

by a revival of religion than by


artillery

blatant scep-

the ponderous

From crowded

bush track comes a loud

for tenderest pity, fervent prayer,

and active

call

zeal,

and surely the men and women of Methodism cannot


be deaf to

M or ley

its

appeal.

admits that

"

Even an Agnostic like John


in a world where men sit and

hear each other groan, where but to think


full

we

of sorrow,

it

is

is

to>

be

hard to imagine a time when

shall be indifferent

to

the sovereign legend of

pity."

To

reality,

and that not of pity only, but of power.

us the "sovereign legend"

is

a regnant

METHODIST RENEWAL

ii2
It

a significant coincidence that Voltaire and

is

When

men set
out on their national enterprises, England was much
The social and
nearer revolution than was France.
Wesley were contemporaries.

political

symptoms of

the hour

these

showed far greater

evidences of instability and peril in England than


across the Channel.

a form

terrible

in

But the

which assumed

evil

evangelistic
revival

dist

Britain,
the

work of John Wesley.


presented

reign

more awful than

Seine,"

By

France England averted.

what means was England saved?

that

Simply by the

Only the MethoGreat

of terror in
" red

which desolated France.

fool fury

of

Methodism

penetrated society with loftiest ideals of

and leavened

so

sober-

with a moral

and

Christian force, creating largely the purposes

and

suited freedom,

possibilities of

racy.

it

a Christian and triumphant democ-

Instead of being splashed from end to end

with fratricidal

blood,

England was roused from

side to side with the appeal of a

new moral

ideal-

ism.

When now we
days,

recall

the

picture of those

dark

with their slumbering or shocking morals

days of war between England and her own

chil-

dren across the Atlantic, days of an ignorant peasantry

and privileged aristocracy, days of corrupt

THE MODERN CHALLENGE


and immoral manners

foul customs,

law,

113

we

can

well understand Cardinal Manning's tribute to

John

In

that

and the

Wesley

evangelism.

Methodist

when England was

eighteenth century,

so corrupt

queen by

that a king swore faithfulness to a dying

promising her that he would never marry again, but

would have a mistress

their signs, declaring that

when gin-shops hung out


customers might get drunk

and have

for a penny, dead drunk for twopence,

clean straw' for nothing

and when the

Manners

the Reformation of
labour, there

" lost

"

Society for

heart and ceased

was a man sent of God, whose name

was John Wesley, with the evangelical message of


a pure Gospel, that wrought a spiritual revolution

and carried with

The

" revival "

political dangers,

sins

that

England from: the

saved

the moral blasphemies

of the eighteenth century,

patriotism,

The

progress,

tests

social

in the

interests

of

and idealism.

of public religious bodies were never

severely

applied

religious

institution

existence

by

its

than

at

present.

must now justify


1

external relations.

harmony with public needs

it

and grapple with the everyday

and

needed by Aus-

is

in the twentieth century,

tralia

more

a moral reformation.

it

It

its

Every
claim to

must be

in

must face the people,


life

of the masses.

METHODIST RENEWAL

ii4

At present Methodism
herself

increasing

growing from within

is

The

by propagation.

clear gain

given to her from her homes and Sunday-schools

is

the most successful phase of her present position.

The
that

fact has
"

been used as a taunt,

Methodism has ceased

to

it

be evangelistic, and

was now only growing by propagation."


part of the statement one

ment

may

latter

true.

As

aggressions, so must Methodism

make

then

missionaries.

to secure further

first

secure converts,

When

Napoleon

was engaged prostrating ancient thrones and


turing metropolitan

Conquest made

cap-

he was asked

why he was

His reply was

significant,

cities,

so continually at war.
"

the

Republic, having subdued the surrounding

barbarous peoples, employed them

and

The

accept as a compli-

but the former part must never be

Roman

being said

me what

am, and conquest must

sustain me."

Methodism may repeat the

historic aphorism.

She

has no other licence to live she must conquer or be


conquered.
To limit her labours to areas already

occupied

Mr.

Church

is

for her to lose her distinctive character.

Spurgeon
is

is

said: "While
in, her own heart

tersely

not bringing others

becoming weak
stitution

once

in its pulsations,

becoming a prey

a
is

and her whole con-

to decline.

The Church

ARE SOULS WORTH SAVING?


must

either

be fruitful or

things a rotten Church


clearly

rotten

all

Sc

the most offensive."

is

was Wesley baptised with the Spirit and

absorbed
directions

in this

high purpose that in his well-known

he

preachers

his

to

You have
"Give me souls,

says

nothing to do but to save souls."

Lord,

of

arid

rot,

115

or

was the prayer of more

die,"

shall

"

than one of the early makers of Methodism.

Our

great need

is

a quickened appreciation of the

men

transcendent worth of

Henca

So

infinite

His ideal concerning


saving

it.

God had one

it,

so loved

the link uniting

God's, the joy

is

man's.

gave to be

pathetic

is

that

God

man

to

to

man.

God, Chris-

The

gift

Over our wearied an3

ful earth a spirit of peace

and

to say

Shepherd with the

of the

If religion be the link uniting


is

the world that

Him He

exquisitely

lamb on His shoulder

tianity

so high

no cost must be spared

that

only Son, and

symbolic picture

sweet

and

it,

David Livingstone used

How

missionary

stray

His pity for

For God

"

gave His Son."

that

souls.

Christ's picture of heaven's joy over a soul's

salvation.

He

insigni-

and paltry are worlds compared with

ficant

in

How

as souls.

is

is

sin-

breathed, as needful

real beneath the Southern Cross as beneath the

Syrian

skies.

Still

do men

cry,

"

Show

us

the

METHODIST RENEWAL

n6

Father," and
breathe, "
"

still

Come

So through
Saying,

does the bosom of the Eternal

unto

Me

and

will give

the thunder comes a

heart

you

human

rest."

voice,

made, a heart beats here

Face,

my hands

Thou

hast no power, nor mayst conceive of mine,

But love

And
Of

fashioned, see

we

in

myself;

gave thee, with Myself to

thou must love

this

it

Me Who

love,

have died for

are witnesses, and what

thee."

we have

and seen we are bound by every moral and

And since it is
men by men who are

felt

spiritual

consideration to testify.

manifestly

God's plan to save

themselves

saved, be

it

ours to fall into line with God's great

purpose revealed in Christ's own ministry, and


corporated

in

Methodism's programme as

consuming passion.

an

inall-

METHODIST RENEWAL;
OR

MAY WE EXPECT ANOTHER


REVIVAL?
III.

THE MEANS OF

IT.

"Nought honors God Ike the thirst of desire,


Nor possesses the heart so completely with him
For

And

it

burns the world out with

fills life

with good work

its

till it

swift ease of fire

runs o'er the brim."

Faber.

"

Is

the general Church

characterised

by

passion for Christ

only be done by

devotion
?

life

to

of the English nation to-day

an

Are we trying

fire ?

'

to

ism

'

or

by

personal

do by water what can

"

J.

H. Jowett.

METHODIST RENEWAL;
Or,

MAY WE EXPECT ANOTHER


REVIVAL?
The Means

III.

Continuing our

inquiry,

of

now

us

let

It.

carry the

question into the field of identified fact and actualised

history,

means,

and

sources,

consider the

therein

and

of

conditions

verifiable

this

devoutly

wished-for consummation.

The
in

Nature,

physical
its

lous

Spirit

this

special

power

has

been

permanently

of

universe,

the
its

order

planet

with

life

times

demonstrating

extraordinary

within

the.

brooding;

over

and

securing

in

immanent

ever

dwelling

sphere

chaos,

spiring
at

Divine

and

unity,

in-

beauty,

and

His

creative

marvel-

crises

and

METHODIST RENEWAL

i2o

Never has there been a time

evolutionary epochs.

when

God

the Spirit of

did not seek to

His

fulfil

matchless purpose, and never has there been a mo-

ment

in

which

He

has not been working His good

pleasure in and on humanity.

momentous and miraculous

But there have been

He

when

points

has

broken through the smooth uniformity of physical


nature and providential order,

presence

in

epochs,

and

the

creation

the

mark such

extraordinary moral

of

inspiration

of

extraordinary

The Old Testament

spiritual experience.

tions

and signalised His

dispensa-

periods, traced broadly in the his-

tory of a specially-selected race, and also identified


in the

personal experiences of

makers of
with them.

its

Israel realised that the Spirit of

That

The

greatest men.

God was

the Scriptural explanation of their

is

He

purity and power, their insight and exploits.

moved through them

as

instruments,

media of His manifestation and

That His presence

tivity.

tion

of

it

often

only

ever- working

in that far-off

often only vaguely comprehended,

temporary

and

vehicles,
1

ac-

time was

and manifesta-

and

transient,

simply means that that period was one of preparation,

a dispensation of discipline, to be transcended

and superseded by what we designate the Pentecostal

privilege,

in

which the Spirit became per-


THE PENTECOSTAL PRIVILEGE

121

manently present in Christian experience, and clearly


revealed as a Person received by faith in the heart

of every believer.

Now we

are living in the full realisation of the

and,

dispensation,

Spirit's

parenthetically,

us

let

note this distinction viz., that the Spirit's manifestation which in pre- Pentecostal experience

garded

a vague, indefinite,

a,s

personal force,

is,

was

re-

temporary, and im-

in the all-encompassing glory of

the Christian experience, no longer an energy, but

a Person

We

not

are

"it," but "Him,."

being

ever

instructed

and

continually

charmed by the recurrent reading of the record of


the Acts of the Apostles,

but ideally that treatise

might more appropriately be designated the Acts


of the Holy Ghost.

and our

finest

of God.

It

is

our fullest illustration

study of the practice of the presence

It is

everywhere instinct with a Divine

movement

mastering

Church

and that movement we can neither deny,

despise,

initiate,

men

moulding

and

nor imitate.

It

baffles

the

explana-

tion.

We

the

glow of fervour, the flood of passion, the co-

can enumerate some of

gency of convincing reason,


self eludes us.

We

etc.

its

characteristics

but the thing

it-

can no more explain than we

can explain away the Pentecostal speech of Peter

METHODIST RENEWAL

122

boldness,

its

and

and power

passion,

evidenced by others

service

had shown themselves but

or

the

who

so>

insight

recently

and slow of

fools

heart.

Surely these are proofs of the Spirit's movement

more convincing than rushing wind, lambent

flames,

and strange tongues.

And

since

Are those

secret

fires

of Pentecost

burnt out so that nothing remains but the grey ashes


of an old-time

memory ?

Has

the promise of Jesus

touching the permanent

abidingness of the Spirit

been as an idle dream?

Has

and fully given, been

the Spirit, so freely

Having

withdrawn?

finally

pronounced the Apocalyptic "Amen," has God deleaving

parted,

His

Church comfortless

"Have

orphaned

world

and

His

grown antiquated?

things of Pentecost

no Spirit now that doth inspire?


prophecy in this our day out-dated?
Burns on our head no supernatural fire?"
Is there

Is

No

thousand Noes.

"The

yet to say unto you."

"He

journey."

young mien

shall

ever."

is

come

and

have many things

Spirit shall guide your

convict the world."

shall prophesy."

these shall ye do."


Spirit

" I

"

Greater things than

All this and more,

He

shall

"Your

"When

the

abide with you for

THE
We

"

SPHERE

SPIRIT'S SPECIFIC

have forgotten God," said Carlyle once

" that's the

And

matter with us."

Church

is

ciency,

the secret of her deficiency

to the

the

if

We

source.

How

be traced

the vivid, apostolic im-

and among us

and working

in

that

then

lost,

He

Church.

He not they
rifice He used

is

He

will,

added

it,

if

to the in-

multiplied the disciples greatly.

Their fervour, eloquence, and sacas

instruments

but the hand that

the power.

a study of the " Acts

God's

dwelling

Depend upon

lost.

weapon wields

uses the

From

all is

effi-

have forgotten the Spirit

we

far have

may

pression of the Divine Presence actually

fant

modern

deploring her lack of increase and

same

of God.

is

123

and His

" it is

obvious that

His

that

ideal,

it

Church

should be replenished and increased by an unbroken


flow into

and

its

who

fold of those

if that ideal is not

are being

saved

being realised, the question

needs to burn on our hearts and consciences. Wherefore?

The

specific action of convicting, converting,

and comforting, everywhere attributed


Spirit,
tent.

is

not ideally

Then why

meagre and
action

is

modern

revivals so rare

humanly

religious results so

Because the Divine

conditioned.

treasure in earthen vessels

Holy

impotent or intermit

either

are our

to the

and both

We

have

spiritual

this

quan-

METHODIST RENEWAL

124
tity

and

Divine

quality

human medium of

determined

are

may

communities, although called Churches,


the Divine purpose and render
it

it

the

Thus, stagnant

transmission.

its

by

abortive,

thwart

making

both undesirable and impossible for the Spirit to

multiply them.

may be

It

perience has in

so

it

little

that

our religious ex-

spiritual life that

God

dare not entrust us with the resposibility of guard-

whom He

ing the souls

may

not be

fore

it

and would

to be trusted with them,

We

save.

and

there-

undesirable that we should have them-.

is

Then

fit

loves

it

may be

His gracious

impossible for the Spirit to work

and do many mighty works be-

will

cause of our unbelief, our selfishness, our worldliness,

and general moral

debility.

His instrument, but what


fective?

Electricity

is

if

The Church

is

the instrument be de-

a mighty force to-day, but

Our
demands a proper medium for its efficiency
purpose and wish to flash some welcome message to
it

our waiting friends avails not in

proper conditions for

power-house

damaged

is

wire.

friends are cut

Oh,
it

let

please

its

transmission.

absence of

The mighty

rendered weaker than a child by a

The

current

is

interrupted, and our

off.

us not longer say that

God

the

to

we must wait

give us a revival

until

for wherever

CONDITIONS OF CONQUEST
there

living souls obviously held

community of

is

125

together by the Divine Presence and obviously re-

His character and purposes, there

flecting

will

be

given to them, as by a law of spiritual gravitation,


souls touched

of spiritual

by Divine grace. Given inward vigour

The Church's

ably follow.

progress

She spreads by

by her purity.
torically,

and outward expansion

life,

genius of revival

is

simply this

determined

is

His-

spirituality.

always been

has

that

will inevit-

the

The

case.

a session of deep-

ened spiritual consciousness, followed by a season

When

of religious expansion.

Lord our God

Just as

have

it

greater truth,
cried, "

us,

then shall our work be

may

expect a

re-

no depends absolutely upon him what we

vival or

shall

upon

Then, whether we

established.

a.re.

is

beauty of the

the

Emerson

said of immortality

we are fit for it "


may we say of revival.

if

Awake, awake, put on thy

of the Lord," the

Divine

reply

awake, put on thy strength,

assured that a deepened religious


spiritual consciousness,

that condition

we may

tive Christians did.

the day

fully comes.

is

so,

strength,

Zion."
life,

We

and with

When

came

"

"

Israel
;

arm

Awake,

Let us be

a profounder

the sine qua non.

And

secure precisely as the primi-

Oh

for the ten days.

Prayer

is

Then

followed by power,

;;

METHODIST RENEWAL

126

and conquest succeeds consecration.

If our Churches

are content with doing nothing on their knees, they

must remain content with doing nothing on

They may

feet.

their

galvanise but not evangelise, and

to electrify is not to sanctify.


" 'Tis life

whereof our nerves are scant


which we pant

'Tis life, not death, for

More

life

and

fuller that

we want."

Oh, then wish more for Him, burn more with

"

de-

sire,

Covet more the dear sight of His marvellous

Pray louder, pray longer for the sweet

To come down on

thy heart, with

its

face,

gift of

fire,

whirlwinds

of grace."

Let us

words

We

ponder the

Rev.

J.

Dawson's wise

cannot organise a revival, but we can organise

ourselves.

We

should seek a revival of the

spirit

of prayer and the desire for sanctity in ourselves

and our churches.

The
ter

By

first

need

is

the evangelisation of the minis-

the next, the evangelisation of the Church.

the

first,

mean

that

learn to preach for a revival;

every minister

must

by the second, that

every Church should be a centre of aggressive pro-

paganda.

THE CHURCHES THE CHANNEL


The

note of the

new time

127

for the minister a

is

passion for souls, and for the Church the consecration of service of others as the
istic

of the Christian

The

revival

must

dominant character-

life.

come

and

in

through

the

Churches.

Let us use any wise method to attract the people


in great special missions

but

let us,

above

all,

use

our Churches, which exist for this very purpose.

The great revival has begun,


dawn that we see. We shall,

"
if

But

we

zealous and wise, see the full day."

it

is

only the

axe faithful,

METHODIST RENEWAL;
OR

MAY WE EXPECT ANOTHER


REVIVAL?
IV

THE ASSURANCE OF

IT.

" For while the

Seem

tired

waves vainly breaking,

here no painful inch to gain

Far back through creek and

Comes

And

inlet

silent flooding in the

making,

main.

not by Eastern windows only,

When

daylight comes, comes in the light

In front the sun climbs slow,

But Westward, look

how

the land

slowly
is

bright."

Clough.

METHODIST RENEWAL;

MAY WE EXPECT ANOTHER

Or,

REVIVAL?
The Assurance

IV.

Having discussed
need and
let

us

the

call,

now

the nature

of

It.

and expression, the

means and conditions of

penetrate

to>

revival,

the heart of our question,

and, by so doing, conclude our present study.


the positions already assumed
vival, because
i.

The

2.

The

rants

From

we may expect a

re-

reign of spiritual law indicates it; and


history of the Church's experience war-

it.

Christianity

is

an organism:, and as such

ject to the great inviolable

tions of spiritual law,

if

laws of

life.

is

sub-

The opera-

not as ascertainable, are

METHODIST RENEWAL

32

Fire

as certain as the operations of natural law.

burns and gravitation


religion spreads.

more surely than

attracts, not

Christianity

essentially perva-

is

The kingdom of heaven is as


leaven which a woman took and hid in three measThe property of leaven is to ramify
ures of meal.
and

sive

diffusive.

and permeate the mass into which

it

is

put, until

it

assimilates) the whole.

The kingdom
tard seed

of heaven

which

is

grew. Let us learn from the par-

How

able of the sower again.

seed

And

the

some

Isaiah's
ligious

down from heaven and

but watereth the earth,

Tyndall

movement

Which

is

fold.

for re-

again.

so

returneth
shall

the

has
tested

declared

that,

by the question

"
:

Every

Does

take the liberty to translate thus

grow? For growth and

tute evidence of life."

the

some

that goeth forth out of God's mouth.

Professor

it

hundred

to

catch the inspiring analogy that as

thither,

Does

to

not

live ?

bringing forth,

some

good

like

is

that exquisite parable


pessimists needs
be pondered

rain cometh

it

is

ploughman

the

possible

and

sixty,

Then we may

word be

prolific

grace of the kingdom,

seed cast into good ground,


thirty,

mus-

like a grain of

Brought

multiplicity constito this test

of law

evidences of ideal spiritual life return

a full

THE TEST OF HISTORY


and constant answer.

Growth

"

133

They

"

(God's

people) " shall grow as the grass and as willows by


" I

watercourses."

the

Israel.

He

grow

shall

his beauty shall

Lebanon.

They

be

and

as the lily

dew unto

the

as

His branches

Lebanon.

roots as

will

cast forth his

and

shall spread,

be as the olive tree and his smell as


that dwell

under His shadow shall

grow as

return; they shall revive as the corn and


the vine."

And Paul
he

insists

exhibits the

that the

same truth

Church grows.

Church to a building of many

Hosea when
Comparing the

as

pardon-

parts, he will

ably mix his metaphors rather than give the impression that the
it

is

Church can be dead, and so he says

a building that grows.

like

stagnant Church

a misrepresentation of the

is

Divine idea and ideal of

however
It

its

full foliaged, if

The

existence.

barren of fruit,

cumbers the ground, and the sooner

the better.

"

Herein

is

much fruit."
Our expectancy of a

My

fig tree,

is
it

cursed.

withers

Father glorified that ye

bear

revival

is

revivified

When

view of the Church's history.

by a

re-

surveying the

swelling victories of the Gospel in his apostolic day,

Paul exultingly exclaimed

Who

"

Thanks

be to

causeth us to triumph in every place."

God

Within

METHODIST RENEWAL

134

years of

thirty

the

Crucifixion

had

Christianity

way into the palace of the Caesars and


by 70 A.D. the Gospel had been preached in all the
then known world.
The selfishness of the narrowfound

its

minded Jew,

the sensuality of the voluptuous Cor-

inthian, the scepticism of the philosophic Greek, the

of the proud Roman, and the supersti-

idolatries

dreamy Pagan

tions of the

tures

fled like affrighted vul-

the majesty of that

at

power of

Holy Ghost.

the

Word spoken in the


And the fires of that

absorbent zeal and passion burnt on in those infant


Christian centuries, until Christianity bid fair to im-

mediately

fulfil its

great commission and

No wonder

ciples of all nations.

saw

in

make

dis-

that Constantine

a symbol of victory, and went forth to

it

conquer with
But, alas

its

sign

Man

has a fatal and pathetic facility

for losing himself and his best treasures,

and the

Church's marvellous history and witness of Divine

Presence and power yields to a dark era of


selfishness,

and for more than 500 years not an acre

of ground was

won

came sacerdotal and


years

in

human

guilty

for Christ.

The Church

theological,

indolence

and

or bitter

spent

wrangling

be-

her
in-

stead of in consecrated and passionate endeavours


to

save

men.

"

Another

hundred

years,"

said

MODERN MOVEMENTS
Luther,

"

and

will

all

be over.

when night

for

Over

that

darkest, then

is

chaos

the

of

Spirit

Word

God's

die for the want of any to preach

135
will

But, no;

it."

up leap the

stars.

God moved, and

Luther saw a "Reformation."

When, 200 years

the moral

later,

land seemed of imperishable

hour with the man,

Methodism

and

gloom of Eng-

God met

depth,

John Wesley

as a spiritual Church,

and

its

the

organised
history has

been one spontaneous and protracted revival. Metho-

dism has rescued hundreds of thousands of


saved

a besotted

nation,

Church from death.

The

and a formal,

sleeping

secret of that success lies

the rich spiritual experience of those

in

souls,

who have

promoted the best evangelical efforts of Methodism,


Early Methodists were men of " one book," and
that, the Bible ; they were men of " one idea," and
that, Evangelism.

The
all

may

present work of

previous

religious

God

in

Wales only confirms

history.

try to explain the

The

phenomena on

psychologist

theories which

exclude the operations of the direct Spiritual Presence.

But

his

of the abyss.

God

reviving

plummets
It

is

fail to

movement.
It is
making Himself known

the Spirit's

His work

in the midst of these years


flat,

sordid,

sound the depths

and barren.

years

otherwise dull,

METHODIST RENEWAL

136
"

T(he

coming revival

'

has

been

of

threshold

world

parts of the

India

and

Great

from several

we

Commonwealth,
Within

experience

its

our

Are these the prophetic


uplift

and

the

hearing

God

borders

From

is

The

and

"

Glad

visiting

signs of a

our

of

States

tidings."

His

people.

great spiritual

religious revival on the scale long

and prayed for?

various

Britain, America,

of

are

years

Are we now on

familiar watchword on our lips.


the

foir

hoped

conversions of thousands

is

no more impossible than the conversion of a single


individual.

Of

course,

such a revival as
are

some who do not expect

are

there

we

describe and desiderate.

some Christian Churches

and rapid ingattierings


convert there

is

a,

There

that object to

large

but when they do get a

cackle as over a new-laid egg.

There are Christian men who even denounce


revival

tendencies,

but

who

never decline to

all

ap-

propriate the results.

One

last

at " getting

While we deprecate

word.

up

"

all

attempts

revival, let all at this juncture

very careful to avoid every hindrance which

prevent

God from

sending

now

herewith."

will

keep His word with

it

"Ask, and ye
us,

down.

"

Prove

shall receive."

be

may

Me
God

NO FORSAKING OR FAILING
"

We

Can it be
boon we sought?

stood amazed and whispered,

That

He

How

wonderful that

hath granted

all

the

137

He hath answered us
O faithless hearts
He said that He would hear
And answer our poor prayers and He hath heard
!'

And proved His

Why

promise; wherefore did we fear?

marvel that our Lord hath kept His word

More wonder

He

should

fail

to bless

Exultant faith and prayer with good success."

METHODISM
Or,

and

THE MASSES;

THE CHURCH

AND THE WORKING CLASSES.


I.

CONSTERNATION.

"The common

people heard

Him

gladly."

The Gospel.

" In every place we

working men most susceptible to

find

religion."

John Wesley, at Birmingham, on Good Friday, 1785.


*

?F

" Under
ment there
the

all
is

TT

the rough-and-tumble side of the Labour move-

More

a deep religious substratum.

inspiration for

work has been drawn from the teachings of Jesus than from

any other source.

Many

of the best

workers in the movement are

and most

self-sacrificing

men who know

their

New

Testament almost by heart."

J.

" The Democracy, not


Church.
the

Probably, nay certainly, Christ

Democracy be impatient with

Christianity.

Hoc

unnaturally,

There

signo vinces."

is

practically

is
is

Keir Hardie.

impatient with the


Himself.

Let not

Christ, with the Gospel, with

no other hope

for the world.

Dr.

Horton.

METHODISM and THE MASSES;


Or, THE CHURCH
AND THE WORKING CLASSES.
I.

The Church and

Consternation.

the masses

The

contents of the

terminology are by no means novel, though concise,

and are

as native as they are

From

summary.

its

inception the Church has ever been in some sort of


vital relation to the masses.

these

have

forces

each other

alike

For nineteen centuries

intermingled

and reacted upon


and des-

determinative of duty

They represent the two great factors in the


and as
sum of human experience and progress
tiny.

facts,

they

stand to-day robust

and powerful, or

languishing and impotent, largely in proportion to


the

degrees of their

reciprocal

operative combinations.

attraction

and co-


METHODISM AND THE MASSES

142

The Church and


history

its

is

the masses

embraced

potentialities for

What

a sweep of

in their conjunction

good or

evil

lie

What

subtly hidden in

the as yet undetermined exercise of their

affinities.

Looking back, the evangelical chronicler of the


century records

Looking round, the Christian apologist of

gladly."

the

The common people heard Him

"

century

twentieth

the

the

earlier

How

mark? Has

supplanted by a saddening distrust

indifference
to<

Is the ultimate issue of such

foresee, not to say foretell, with

any degree of assurance, or even probability

why ?

Surely, on the face of

be a Divine

whatever

"

purpose and

good news

" it

not a

has for the working

man

let

the truth be told

the

we

find

It

is

the Gospel

if

human

of our time

among

And

yet

in place of reverence

a deplorable fact that the

Churches have fallen into actual neglect


stances are not

blunder,

masses taunt instead of

modern Church, and


ridicule.

it,

If

had for the Jewish artisan

it

trust the

has occasioned the dif-

the blank interrogation

a breach difficult

so,

we

shall

gladsome comradeship and cordial en-

thusiasm, been

and cool

What

change?

Why

ference?

"

enquires,

Looking forward What

reach the masses ?"

Why

first

wanting

the working classes.

of practical

The

late

and

in-

contempt

Lord Shaftes-

THE PRESENT POSITION


bury estimated

working men

that

only

attended

per cent,

Catholic

vestigation of the subject thus

wage earners

British

any Church

Washington Gladden sums up

Protestant.

The

of

143

"

his

or
in-

The proportion of

in our churches is diminishing."

recent census, conducted by the Daily

News,

has disclosed the fact that a vast section of London's population

do not

any place of worship,

go- to

that

they habitually neglect attention to soul cul-

ture

and

spiritual

life.

Mr.

Mudie Smith, who

superintended the census of attendances at Divine


worship, says that sixty per cent, of the available

population

is

apparently apathetic, or antagonistic

as regards attendance at a

Sunday.
visited

In process of the census, the enumerators

2600 places of worship, 2538 of which were

Christian,

The

place of worship- on a

and 62 Jewish.

total

population of the twenty-nine Metro-

politan Boroughs

4,536,541.

is

It is

estimated that

68,492 of these dwell in institutions, such as hospitals,

workhouses,

4,468,049.

The number recorded

a place of worship
of

prisons,

is

leaves

as having attended

1,002,940, which gives a ratio

in 4.45 of the population.

per cent, of those

This

etc.

who do

attend twice on the Lord's

But

as about 35

attend Divine Worship

Day,

this

reduces the

i 44

METHODISM AND THE MASSES

total

attendants to 850,204;

and thus the aggre-

London

gate attendance for the whole of

is

in

Further,

5.25, or 16 per cent, of the population.

the census shows that the smallest ratio of the popu-

Church

lation attending

is

found

which embrace the working

in those

Boroughs

class districts.

Mr. Moody, who had large opportunities of observing

phenomena, declared with

social

" the

words that
masses

last

gulf between the Church and the

growing deeper, wider and darker every

is

This attitude

hour."

his

may mean

nothing more than

an indifference to the religion of the Churches, or


it

may mean,
in

crisis

some serious minds prophesy,

as

" a

the existing relations between the Gospel

and the labour problems." Edward Salmon, writing

The National Review,

in

far

atheism."

says,

and the other

Christian heaven

He

pertinently asks

Churchman

or the

"We

The

"

We are

not

the cross roads, one of which leads to a

off

truly

remarks

to

practical

"Is the freethinker

be the pilot

Mr. Blatchford

?"

have reached the parting of the ways."

issue

is

grave.

The common people

the dominant power.

long in coming, but

all

are

now

Their opportunity has been


it

"

has come.

says Demos, "they reckon

Henceforth

to

ill

who

our institutions,

Henceforth,"

leave out me."

the

religions

not

TRIUMPHANT DEMOCRACY
will."

It

more

critical

broad based upon a people's

impossible

is

conceive

to

but (as

rule,

nently and powerfully puts

Fairbairn

Dr.

unless

it),

and rule through the people, the end of

and boasted progress

struggle

anything

of

than this conscious sovereignty of the

They

people.

"

must be

excluded,

145

will

God

perti-

live in

our long

all

and

be chaos

death.

The

from the

alienation of the working classes

Church

is,

moment

to humanity's well-being.

and

therefore, a matter of serious

Now,

vital

manifestly,

Christianity cannot long survive without the active

common

faith of the

the kindliest

people.

welcome

hung upon His

lips.

It

was they who gave

to Jesus, clung to
It

was their

His person,

support

secured the early triumphs of Christianity


day,

it

is

that

and, to-

palpably true that the real strength of the

common people.
Abraham Lincoln used to say that " God must have
loved the common people because He made so many
of them."
The working men of to-day are worth
Church

found

is

in

lowly,

the

the life-blood of the Church, and, in their conversion,

lies

How

shall

the

all

we reach them?

ciliated

by

genious

tactics.

greatest of

ecclesiastical

modern

They

possibilities.

will not

be con-

patronage or won by

The Church

that seeks to

in-

win the

"

METHODISM AND THE MASSES

46

working man, simply that


buttress

up

power, or parade

its

as ignominiously

fail

may crowd

it

as

charges and

spirit,

as unsel-

not be solved by vituperative

will

counter

Divine proposal

Come,

"

let

and

the ancient

cynicisms;

us reason

together

more sanity of method and assurance of

cess.

Of

course

degrees

are

there

of alienation

grees indicated roughly by these groups, as so

natural orders, viz.

suc-

de-

many

absolutely hostile toward the Church.

2.

The
The

3.

Those who are neither

i.

The

fail.

the Gospel which the Church has to preach.

The problem

has

will

success,

deserves to

it

masses can be won, but only by a


fish as

its

its services,

thoughtlessly indifferent.
hostile nor indifferent,

but who, for reasons real or imaginary, voluntarily


detach themselves and stand aloof from Church association.

Needless to say,
groups of
primarily

group

it

this

it

is

with the second and third

classification

concerned.

And

may be admitted

that this

certainly

discussion

of

the

is

third

that the majority of

its

members, as honest men, would rather be identified


in

some fashion with the Christian Church than be

alienated and disfranchised.

They

clearly see that


"NOT BY BREAD ONLY"
the powers that have
tianity

come

147

into conflict with Chris-

and competition with the Churches aie weak,

The weary worker,

dis-

appointed with the mirage, sighs for the pool.

He

insufficient,

cannot

live

and

failing.

on chagrins and husks when he

somehow, that

in his Father's

house

feels,

bread enough

is

appeased

Why should he perish with an unhunger? He toils and tires, but the labour

and meat

satisfieth not.

and

to spare.

murmur

speaks; and the low


from; the soul
"

its

His indomitable conscience


of uncontent sobs up

threnody

Where is the singer whose large note and clear


Can heal, and arm, and plenish, and sustain ?"
Why, then, have these honest-hearted and weary

workers broken with the Churches?

If the

Church

holds what the worker wants, and the worker can

supply what the Church needs

Come
it

is

and he that

is

athirst says

the "bride says

Come

!"

surely

down and

Towards

that idea

consummated.

we

labour, and for

jot

of heart or hope.
!

if

time that barrier walls were broken

eternal wedlock

way

its

realisation

we

But there are

bate not one


lions

in

the

METHODISM
Or,

and

THE MASSES;

THE CHURCH

AND THE WORKING CLASSES.


II.

CONDEMNATION.

" The Christianity of the future must go back

James

ss St.

workers
Jesus

'

working-man Epistle

in his

will never believe that

we show them

till

demned

avails

Kitchen, in " The New Party."

come

to residence in this foetid place

glimpse of heaven through a


pure water

and heavy

help

me

to

little

be clean

and then

life,

will

brethren in Christ

'

so."

it is

missionary, to

it,

The

before us.

it

are their

in fact that

G. W
" Oh, what

we

set

to the Gospel,

of

me a man
Give me my

con-

to

its light

and

air

first

me

give

lighten this heavy atmosphere

hear of

Him whose

thoughts

were so much with the poor, and who had compassion with

human sorrow."

"

Who

will

Dickens

failed

people

to

is

largely due to the fact that the Churches

be the guardian of collective morality

feel instinctively that

become easy and even

may

They

injustice in our laws.

be wrong

guidance in

easier.

The

want and poverty are anomalies

a world in which the production of

due to some

(Nobody's Story.)

deny that the prevailing indifference among the

masses of the people

have

all

all

in

forms of wealth has

instinctively feel that

They may be

it

is

right or they

but inasmuch as the Churches refuse them

this all-important question,

from the Churches.

they have drifted

away

"Progress."

METHODISM and THE MASSES;


Or, THE CHURCH
AND THE WORKING CLASSES.
Condemnation.

II.

The masses have

a reckoning with the

Church

they have actual or imaginary grievances, the utter-

ance of which

it is

vain to suppress.

As Burns puts

it

"

A
A
A

cauld wind in

November blew,

cauld kirk and in

but a few,

it

caulder minister never spak;

Ye'll

a'

be warm ere

come back."

Let us, then, examine the causes, real or apparent,


1

which are alleged as accounting for

their alienation.

There are three principal charges which, with some

show of reason,

are,

persistently

urged against the Church.

and vigorously,

METHPDISM AND THE MASSES

152
I.

Hypocrisy or

It

" the

that

said

is

Orthodox Church

Church

to save

is

may

exercises

the

Church."

this

reproach.

ranted

may

not be good, but

Let the

we

is

summed up

much

Word

saved for himself alone.

and through

service.

into the world, even so


"

have

Salvation

law

No
is

came not

"

duty

Christion

As thou

I sent

"

is

Thou

Christian

for service

to be minis-

hast sent

Me

them."

This was the way the Master went,

Should not the servant tread


Possibly
conditions
their

which should

of infinite

" Christ

tered unto, but to minister."

to

may be unwar-

shalt love thy neighbour as thyself."


is

listen

be learned from such

to

The

remedied.

in Christ's

these are

if

Churches calmly

It points at least to defects

speedily

religious

care nothing for

sounds severe;

It

but there

criticism..

be

or

individualism

churchgoing and

Your

of Church discipleship

signs

an asylum,

rankest

of the

supplies illustrations
selfishness.

The

escape.

selfish

The apparent duty of a modern


his own soul, and so the Church

place of refuge.

and

of

of the

gospel

theological

one

is

Service.

v.

conceived of as an ark,

is

disciple

Selfishness

it

still ?"

the Churches have not accepted the severe

of their salvation or the full terms of

commission.

They may not be

as

good as

CHRISTIANITY CARICATURED
The

their

book.

smug

professor,

hypocritical

than-thou attitude,

is

not an altogether

Churches

exaggerated

men who

in

unknown

character in our

type

this

criticism.

Still,

is

much

there are

earnestly profess one thing and sincerely

The most

do another.
characters

make

cynical

is

despicable of

all

modern

Mr. Facing -Both- Ways, who aims

" to

God

the best of both worlds," cheating both

and the
"

devil.

Give us

He

day our daily bread,

this

prayed

at

early

morn,

And then went on the Stock Exchange


To raise the price of corn."
Working men can see through this as clearly
John Ruskin when he declared,
for anything

sons of

Eli

it

is

made

their day, and, alas

" If religion is

good for everything."


the
!

sacrifice

critically

its

ethical

good

But the

be abhorred

to

is

no

in

and

religion,

we dare not but admit and express our fear


after all excuses are

as

they have their successors now.

Religion, bereft of conscience,

sacrificed

and questionable con-

though undoubtedly

holier-

much of which may be only

veil to hide his sleek jealousy

duct,

disciple arid

selfish

unctuous voice and

with

153

that,

made, the pulpit has largely

power

controversial

or

in

its

purely

pursuit of

emotional

the

of

METHODISM AND THE MASSES

154

To

various types.

once a week,

feel nice,

to get
tial.

do?"

to think finely,

or to

no doubt estimable, but

is

men to do right all the week is more


To ask other people, " What would

essen-

Jesus

one thing; but to go out and do something

is

one's

men

get

and

spontaneously

self,

sacrificingly,

an-

is

Sentimentality and priggery will not

other thing.

pass muster for

and

sincerity

and

piety,

so the

workers oft sneer at pulpit and pew with downright


contempt.
"

Oh, wad some power the

To
It

see ourselves as others see us,

wad

frae monie a blunder free us

And
What

foolish notion.

airs in dress

And
II.

giftie gie us

and gait wad

Devotion

ev'n

Otherworldliness

or

lea'e us,

!"

Heaten versus

Humanity.
Otherworldliness,

however

contemplative souls, has


ing masses, especially if
fishness,

unreason,

future heaven makes


us a bit of

it

them

fear;

little

little

and
little

is

charm for the moil-

be associated with

it

injustice.

The

appeal to them.

here," say they.


it

beautiful for devout,

The

sel-

Church's
"

Give

future hell gives

not the future, but the hor-

SIGNS OF
present,

rible

THE KINGDOM

They want

troubles them.

that

gospel for the actual troublous,

now

The

is.

as well

as

155

tragical

life

that

present, as well as the future; earth,

heaven

justice,

not charity

these

axe

the essential characteristics of the only religion, that

can win the consent of their mind and devotion of

And

their heart.

demand

to this

the Churches will

do well to take heed; for, surely,


ration

which

Christianity

He

so

emphasis was on

commissioned His disciples

sin,

to

"

to declare that the conditions,

many

The

life.

The Kingdom of Heaven is at


Time and earth are its
Here, and now
At hand
The Churches have to tell that

pieach was this

scenes.

voices an aspi-

accord with the real genius of

Christ's

Gospel which

hand."

in

is

it

which are dooming

of our fellows to squalid sorrow and sordid

are neither eternal nor right.

Society,

home,

and commerce may be made sound and sweet, and


existence here beautiful

we must look,
God's promise, for new heavens and
The
wherein dwelleth righteousness.

for the next life

according to

a new earth

and bright. The programme

is

not out yet, and

God is to be done on earth as it is in heaven


how can this come about, save by the applica-

will of

but

tion of the laws of Christ to the


cial,

social

and

common, commer-

political affairs of

humanity?

METHODISM AND THE MASSES

156

The Jewish
to

saw more than a new road

artisan

heaven in Christ's Gospel.

spoke of justice

It

The modern working man

on earth.

does not want

to call in another world to redress the

ance of

He demands

this.

a gospel that can heal

the wounds, reform the abuses,


rations of

human

and meet the

There

society.

uneven bal-

much

is

aspi-

to justify

the conclusion that while " Christianity claims this


to be God's world,

possessors of

is

practical inferences, teaches that

and that the duty of

the devil's world,

Christians

is

name," nevertheless, the

in Christ's

many

Church, by
it

it

and that God's people are to be

get out of

to

possible

meanwhile,

there,"

and

it

distinctly

of the

it,

home over

we must expect

is its

object,

tain,

pious

and

poli-

and personal dishonesties inevitably

upon the community.


that the Church,

preaching

The

to face the necessary attendant evils

which land monopolies, commercial combines,


tical jobberies,

our civilisation

and anti-Christian.

materialistic

rapid accumulation of great wealth

entail

as

to " sing of the realms of the blest "

Undoubtedly, in many, aspects of


is

expeditiously

as

" think

to

all -poor

patience

platitudes

if

and poverty, has had

its

is

now

cer-

ever content with merely

and

about

This much

contentment,

sin

chattering

and temptation, crime

day, and can only be left

THE PROMISE OF

THAT

LIFE

economic roots of

to the sources, the

157

Let us get

stranded on the shores of a dead past.

down

IS

dare not urge a diminution of pitif ulness

We

sin.

indeed,

on Christian grounds, we must not relax one

effort

to ameliorate the condition of the poverty-stricken

our philanthropy and charity.

But

let

by

us not vainly

imagine that we have discharged our duty, by

dis-

bursing doles and handing round a poor-fund box

The struggler
Ploughman "
" It's

says,

not what

the words of the " Norfolk

in

wants to be tinkered when I'm

down
It's to

and to keep up, and to have sum-

get up,

mat of my own
That's

the

thing;

and

if

the

Boible (as them

farmers do agree)

Be agen poor

folk arising, then

I'll let

the Boible

be."

III. ECCLESIASTICISM

The German
as

their

OR

socialists,

leader,

have

CREED

while

V-

CHRIST.

professing

repudiated

the

Illustrating the positivist's taunt that " the

Christ

Churches.

Churches

have not religion enough," Thoreau says somewhat


extravagantly, "
is

to

The only way

get rid of Christianity."

to

understand Christ

That there

is

some

METHODISM AND THE MASSES

158

truth in these paradoxes will be readily admitted.

They,

most forms of

at least, express the fact that

organised

Christianity

and stood between

have misrepresented Christ,

Him

and men's devotion.

The

masses can distinguish between theology and righteousness,


Christ

and they

enough

and

creed

will tell

ecclesiastical

or

character,

Church

and

you that they have had

formularies,

vances, and sectarian bigotry.

sacerdotal obser-

Their want of sym-

pathy with the Churches must not be construed into


antipathy to the spirit of
tinctly

few.

hostile

to

Christianity,

The majority would


file

are

dis-

but these are very

rather follow the teach-

ing of the Gospel than that of the

rank and

Some

Jesus.

"

Clarion."

The

are neither sceptics nor agnostics; they

are waiting for Christ, but they will not accept the

Thirty-nine Articles for the one Christ.

Again

is

heard the plea,

" Sirs,

their realisation

of Him, will be salvation to them

and

all

we would

see Jesus."

And

Christendom.

Surely, in the light of the foregoing indictment,

we,

"We

of

the

modern Churches,

stand condemned

have done the things we ought not to have


done, and have left undone the things we ought to
have done,"

METHODISM
Or,

and

THE MASSES

THE CHURCH

AND THE WORKING CLASSES.


III.

COMMENDATION.

"The

men can only be accomplished by the


sovereignty of God.
The longing for fraternity can never be
satisfied but under the sway of a common Father.
Announce
equality of

the sublime and solaceing doctrine of theocratic equality."

Beaconsfield (Tancred).
" Cut

off

God from

the Service of man, and the long habit and

inherent beauty of that service

few generations

may

perpetuate

but the inevitable call must

conduct to the altered conditions, and

in

every man's ideal shall surely turn from,

neighbour

to,

How

can

customs for a

come

to subject

the absence of

How

make my neighbour

Dr. G.

its

A.

can

serve

serve

God

my

me ?"

Smith

(Isaiah).

METHODISM and THE MASSES;


Or, THE CHURCH
AND THE WORKING CLASSES.
Commendation.

III.

For the alienation of the masses from the active


religious ministrations of the
to

Church, the Church

is,

That she

a degree, culpable, but not wholly so.

has not done for the working classes what she might

have

done,

is

evident

but

that

something, much, indeed, for them,

she
is

has

done

equally de-

monstrated.
It

was given

to

the

Church, as the vehicle

of

Christianity, to assert the sacred rights of humanity.

The

labourer of Greece and

a thing and not a man.


"

Rome was

The

regarded as

dicta of Cicero, that

no noble sentiment could come from a workshop,"

and

Aristotle, that " the title of citizen belongs only

METHODISM AND THE MASSES

162

to those

who need

of Plato, that
slaves,"

the

were

"

not work in order to live," and

manual labour was

and disproved by

controverted

first

men who founded

suitable only for

the Church.

This enslaved

idea of labour was emancipated by the teachers of


Christianity.

Him

and

James,

Christ Himself

were fishermen.

and from

Andrew,

Peter,

was

John

mechanic,

and His disciples came, for the

first

time, the elucidation of the doctrine of the brother-

hood of the human

None

race.

but the prejudiced student can fail to see

the influence of the Church, on every

movement

for

the amelioration of the hard conditions of labour,


right

on from the

first

century to

the

twentieth.

America or Great Britain had


been dreamed of, Clement declared " no man is a
slave by nature."
How the early Church practiBefore the

liberties of

cally cared for the people,

instanced by Mr.

Lecky

pean Morals," that the

is

evidenced in the fact,

in his "

History of Euro-

was founded
in the fourth century by Fabiola as an avowed
Christian act. English constitutional liberty had its
birth in the Magna Charta, but had there been no
Archbishop of Canterbury there would have been
no Magna Charta. The peasant wars of Europe in
the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries were the outcome of the Reformation.
first

hospital

THE SOCIAL REQUISITE


The testimony of

way of
mann,

nised this as
for the

solving

the

and moral advance-

remains the

of social problems

first

requisite

full,

Gospel

is

not a mere

must be animated with

It

The

sentiment.

hope for the


is

the

Henry George has so clearly recogto declare, " The intelligence required

thing of the intellect.


religious

in

no room for doubt," said Kauf-

is

" that Christianity

of humanity."

the laws,

swept aside the obstacles

so far

There

demanded

not

if

the labourers' material


"

ment.

Church

that history is that the

has shaped the customs,


that have

163

salvation of society,

the

free development of humanity,

brotherhood

of

the

Gospel

of

thoroughly

ex-

Christ."

That the Church has failed

pound the Christianity of


but, with all her defects

serted that the

to

must be admitted

Christ,

and

failures,

can

it

be

as-

work for humanity, which has borne

the stamp of the

Man

of Nazareth, has been done

by other hands than those trained in the Church

Take out of modern

society

Church, and you rob

it

loftiest

aspirations,

deepest motives.

its

its

of the

influence

noblest aspects,

its

and

its

wildest

reforms,

John Richard Green, who

learning," tells us that

of the eighteenth

of

the

it

"

died

was the Methodist revival

century

which

originated " the

METHODISM AND THE MASSES

164

steady attempt, which has never ceased from that

day

to this, to

suffering,

remedy the

and

time ago, that

social

now

guilt, ignorance, physical

Only a short

degradation."

sainted hero,

Hugh P Hughes,

name a

single charity

or philanthropic institution sustained

by them, and

challenged the secularists to

he affirmed that

if

withhold their personal service


the

great

philanthropies

was not one of these


dead and bankrupt
people,

much

London were to
and sacrifice from

the Churches of

of the metropolis,

would not be

institutions that

in six

months.

it

course, to

may appear

of this effort

direction of energy, but

Of

some

as a mis-

nevertheless,

is,

there

an

evi-

dence that there lives in the Church a throbbing


terest

human

in

Movements,"

"

welfare.

Central

Of

this,

the "

in-

Forward

" Institutional

Missions,"

Churches," and " University Settlements," are

irre-

sistible evidence.

Never were the pulpits ringing out the blackness


of the land, and ringing in the Christ that is to be,
with more clear-tongued clang.
theology

is

belated.

We

voice of the dead past;


there

are

signs

one.

much of our

speak with a husky

oft

but, even in this respect,

of marked advance to-day.

preacher's position
difficult

True,

He

is

felt to

stands, in

be a most

many

critical

The
and

respects, at the

UNWARRANTED CYNICISM
parting of the

alas

sneer, as

is,

But

says

this

We

sight.

ways and
too

ponders.

cheap

It is

common, with

165
to

certain critics.

for their insight, or even eye-

little

are all familiar with the picture that

is

drawn, with sickening frequency, of the parson as


a

dumb dog

on the fat of the land, tolerated

living

by the credulity of a few conscience-stricken people.

There are
but

ries,

cent,

of enormous sala-

ecclesiastics in receipt

who

venture to affirm that five per

will

of present-day clergymen can save a shilling

Many

on their incomes?

a year

plorable

who,

poverty,

are living in de-

by transferring from the

and other pursuits

pulpit to literary

their

acknow-

ledged ability and energy, could exchange penury


for luxury.

unjust to indiscriminately con-

It

is

demn preachers

as

platitudes

professional

and peace

congregation.

Is

it

to

the rich

to

minister

look, as

for

preaching

members of

he

helpful

the

striker

invariably
service,

does,

and the
to the

our Churches, and in reply to that criticism a

wag has

bers

are

and

suggestion

True, there are few poor people in

leadership?

cal

their

a blind or false instinct that

leads the struggler in distress

sweated

loafers,

said, " It is not our fault that its

not

poor, for

when

the poor

cleri-

mem-

join

the

Churches' ranks they generally begin to relatively

METHODISM AND THE MASSES

i66

outgrow their poverty, and so cease to be poor."

There
one

is

may

some truth

in that playful diagnosis

but

prefer to account for the absence of the

poor in our Churches on a yet broader ground, and


thence

contend that

old-time grip

Churches have

the

lost

their

and therefore they have

of Christ,

lost their old-time grip of the people.

But does

necessarily follow that if the preacher

had a bigger

Gospel he would have a bigger congregation, as

My own

frequently asserted by critics?

it

is

confession,

based on observation and knowledge not altogether


superficial,

is

that

prophets of

the

righteousness

have, not infrequently, received only a posthumous

honour from labour leaders.


In

we cannot omit the searching


whether working men themselves have dis-

this connection

question,

charged their full part towards securing the purity

and serviceableness of the Church; whether they


have striven to render
Christ's teaching?

a complete

it

Have

embodiment of

they supplied that large

strength, of which they are capable, for the destruction of selfishness


tion

be admitted,

and sin?

Supposing the conten-

the

Church stands blame-

that

worthy, and that this


alienation

may

largely account for the

of the working classes,

account for

it,

and, if so, does

it

does

it

wholly

justify it?

Grant-

THERE ANYTHING BETTER?

IS

Church has,

ing that the nominal


"

it,

we

wandered

as Carlyle puts

from the point," what have

terribly

bottom to compare

at

167

Perhaps

with, it?

it

but

mind of the Master, and but


the realisation of His kingdom

faintly represents the

feebly labours for

on earth.

can any friend of humanity

ought to be, and what in idea

make

what

it

Shakspeare's

is ?

it

better

generation

his

serve

than through the Church, seeking to


it

how

the question persists,

Still,

couplet
"

The

dear Brutus,

fault,

not with our stars,

is

But with ourselves that we are underlings."

may

find

an application here.

who can

Yet, further, the seer

times

the
"

is

no

discern the signs of

alarmed by the ghost

longer

The Church's

Otherworldliness."

source has largely ceased to be;


rather in the curse of earthliness.
" a

monstrated to-day as

are

being

illustrated

The

Church enterprise.
want

to wait for

assured that there


does not ask
sisted

on

him

that

in

heaven
is

lies

is

de-

much of

the

social ethics of Jesus

large

spaces

struggler,
in

danger

Religion

thing not so

The

stars as of the streets."

from that

peril

the

of

of

who

modern
does

another world,

may

not

be

no reason why he should. Jesus

to.

But

this

much must be

there can be no heaven,

in-

anywhere,

168

METHODISM AND THE MASSES


him who

for

Improved

lacks the heavenly mind.

social surroundings the

masses

insist

upon having,

and these cannot long be denied them; but be

membered
is

vastly

re-

it

that the condition-of-the-people question

more than a matter of circumstance.

fullest significance of

provement

is

meaning,

" the soul

the improvement of the soul."

Mrs. Browning tersely expresses


" It

of

takes a soul to

it

move

In
im-

all

Or, as

a body,

E'en to a cleaner sty."

The Church is bound to witness to the Divine


diagnosis of human nature, before which the nostrums of mountebanks and prescriptions of quacks

John Bright used to speak

are folly and mockery.

of certain reformers who had discovered " a new


to

earthquakes."

cure

Similarly,

merely materialistic Socialism

is

the

syrup

pill

of a

being offered as a

human panacea. Better conditions


masses demand and must have
but granting

the

veritable

that

even ideal circumstances were realised, the question

would
or

sufficient

statues

are

persist with pertinent point, " Is this

end?"

To

surround

and pictures and music

bound a higher wage and

with

captives

to offer

them

that

social betterment

name of any real Gospel,


I want
with human necessities.
in the

an ideal

is,

the veriest trifling

a clean street

but

WHAT
I

IS

FUNDAMENTAL?
What

need a clean soul.

advantage, to any man,

an easy con-

are easy conditions in the absence of

Depend upon

science?

this, that

remain they will exact the old


destroyed, every reform

Man

tion vain.

is

is

while the old sins

clothed,

and well housed.

Gospel

must,

tal

to-day,

in

Looking
the

at

"man

human

Church must

plete

su-

being well fed, well

And, while the Church's


recognise

clearly

it

that

the

must not be

and ignore the equally fundamen-

itself,

truth that

sin un-

and every aspira-

futile

masses "have need of these things,"


than

With

fines.

more than an animal whose

preme blessedness consists

lesser

169

doth not live by bread alone."

nature steadily, and as a whole,

insist that

satisfaction

man

needs, for the com-

of his many-sided

being,

much

more than the provision of a Mammon's paradise of


sensuous delight.

His

real wealth lies,

not in the

abundance of the things he possesses, but in the excellence of the thing that he
"

is.

Before earth reach her earthly best,

A God

must mingle with the game."

METHODISM
Or,

and

THE MASSES

THE CHURCH

AND THE WORKING CLASSES.


IV

CONCILIATION.

"

do not believe that

until true

men and women,

more system than


effort cast silken

'

the masses' will ever be reached


in far larger

hitherto, go

numbers and with

among them and by

Dr.

"The

-IP

MacLarkn.
^P

intelligence required for the solving of social problems

must be animated with the

religious sentiment

and warm with

human suffering. For at the bottom


problem we shall find a social wrong."

sympathy
social

individual

chains of sympathy and brotherliness round

them."

7P

far

for

of every

Henry George.

METHODISM and THE MASSES;


Or, THE CHURCH
AND THE WORKING CLASSES.
IV

Conciliation.

In seeking the solution of our problem,


will be

nothing

gained by the denunciation of either pulpit

or platform, the raving of either Socialist or Ecclesiastic.

Reconciliation and co-operation will be se-

cured by informing rather than inflaming each other.

Nothing

is

more deplorable, or can be more disas-

trous to the

common

and the worker than

interests of

both the Church

this too frequently indulged-in

cross-firing over the gulf that at present

unhappily

separates them.

After

Adam and Eve had

wearied each other with

mutual complaints and accusations, our great epic


poet makes

Adam

thus address

Eve

METHODISM AND THE MASSES

174
"

But

Each
In

rise

let

blamed enough elsewhere, but

other,

offices

Each

of love

other's

In that

us no more contend, nor blame

how we may

burden

lighten

in our share of

philosophy

Miltonic

strive

lies

woe."

wisdom, as

salutary as sane, for such a time as this.

May

not the real line of cleavage be found here

that the Church,

trine

in its accentuation of the doc-

of the Divine Fatherhood,

lookedor only regarded

human brotherhood

of

has largely over-

theoretically

and that

the doctrine

social

reformers,

propagandism of human brotherhood, have

in their

rejected the Divine

Fatherhood?

The Church has obeyed and insisted on the


great Commandment
the masses, the second.
;

imperfect vision,

this
aim,,

may be

first

To

and consequently, narrowed

ascribed the very pitiable separation

and partial success of both.

In

the

new

world,

wherein dwelleth righteousness, there are two hemispheres of truth and obligation.

Now
let

it

to be specific in this appeal, to the

Church

be said that, standing face to face with this

fact of the alienated

working

cognising that the Church

is

still,

Church

one of humiliation.

is

only

and while

re-

by no means entirely

mood

culpable,

the

classes,

that

becomes

the

The dying prayer of

THE SOCIAL IDEAL

175

Archbishop Usher well becomes the Church

my

forgive

and

Churches;

much

not so

sins

Lord,

of omission."

their

scepticism has

its

source

an intellectual as in a moral impres-

in

somehow

sion,

my

"

are not sceptical of Christianity, but of

The masses
the

especially

sins,

Churches are not

the

that

prevalent,

generally

vital, religious realities,

not bodies

organised for the teaching and doing of righteousness,

but rather institutions for the maintenance of

and conventional

vested interests

We

respectabilities.

must, therefore, be seized of the conviction,

now general, that

Christ's ethics

must be applied

in

modern economics, and under no disguise must we


shirk the grave

responsibility of pointing out

how they may be

they should be, and

One of
Church

greatest

the
is

functions

of

so applied.

the

Christian

encourage the practicable exhibition

to

of Brotherhood in the daily relations between


ployers and

why

Employed

to

Em-

impress the duty of a

sympathetic understanding of each other's position,


so that in place of
distrust,

mutual
obtain.

the

mutual suspicion, jealousy and

more sane and

justice,

Christian temper of

consideration and co-operation

The outcome

may

of such, a transformation of

would be a great realisation of high social


righteousness.
In such an effort, those who name
the name of Christ may engage with worthy hope.
spirit

METHODISM AND THE MASSES

176

If the Church

be

in

perform

to

is

harmony with

its

its

functions

must

it

environment. Politically, the

Church has not kept pace with the great movements

The

of our time.

true disciples of

Jesus,

whose

purpose was the founding of a Commonwealth of


cannot

comprehensiveness,

universal

consistently

hold themselves aloof from any movement indicative


of and helpful

social

to

comes to make out of


in

which everyone

and

justice

an ideal world,

this present

where

shall be placed

infinite

Christianity

progress.

in Divine

love he ought to be.

Can

the

Church help God

in the Christian reconstruction of

human

Can

society?

it

share of fruits, and open

career?

If not,

secure to
to-

labour

all talent

its

just

the door of a

must make room for something

it

else that can,


"

They

will

march prospering

though

not through

our presence

Songs

will inspirit

them

though

not from our

lyre;

Deeds

will

be done

while

we

boast our quies-

cence,
Still

bidding crouch,

whom

the rest bid aspire."

Speaking some time ago, the now sainted


Price

Hughes

said

"

Hugh

In the past, Christianity has

THE GREATEST NEED


been

we

individualistic;

too

neglected the fact that Christ

have

came

177
practically

to save the na-

tion as well as the individual.

Then
no

again, socially, the Church's attitude can be

one

longer

patronage

of

and condescension.

Within the Church, class distinction should be un-

known.

When

the poor she

is

she

bows

and patronises

to the rich

unfaithful to her commission, and

is

on the highway towards making herself and religion


abhorrent in the eye of the intelligent working man.

The Church,

as Dr.

Fairbairn points out,

"

knows

only 'man'; hence the terms 'master and servant,'


'

capital

and labour,' denote

relations

Church cannot recognise save in the

ciliation.

of hope

rather than

'

than to cure

evil rather

treated as "
" classes,"

Labour Church

is

which

spirit

an attempt to sanctify an
it."

The masses must be


not

as

Gilded places

specialisation.

of worship for the rich

of con-

a creation, of despair

men," with human rights, and

for social

the

and better-educated

classes,

and bare mission halls fox the uncultured poor, are


entirely

monstrous and mischievous.

If there be

any place where the rich and poor should meet together on equal terms

ever else the house of


people.

We may

it is

the house of God.

God

is,

it

is

the

What-

home of

the

compromise matters by building

METHODISM AND THE MASSES

178

mission halls, but this only accentuates the difference

and increases the


this

want of

Church

is

In other respects also,

difficulty.

adaptation

to

But, alas

alarmingly apparent.

been slow to recognise

by the

environment
!

we have

this.

Let us judge ourselves,

that

we

The remedy

disarm the judgment of others.

and

anticipate

for all

these manifest defects lies in a nearer approach to

We

our Divine Master.


of Jesus

"

forth as

He

the Helper,

we

let

and died, as

is

the

move

He

all

He moved

in Judea,

has

lost

none of ancient

the conscience, melt the heart, and

captivate the will of the


is

Him

and holding

as able in this twentieth century as in

power, but

pel

and method

Friend, Brother, and Saviour of men,

shall discover that

first to

Him

us reflect

lived

" secret

need the

common

people.

His Gos-

complete to the standard of perfectness for

humanity's necessities.

Let us prove that

it

is

Gospel of Reality, of Brotherhood, of Conscience

and of

Service.

His unique Personality

is

as of

yore, the dynamic to demonstrate the fulness of His

gracious message, "

Come

and axe heavy laden, and

unto Me,
I will

all

ye that labour

give you rest."

THE MISSION OF METHODISM.

<k

lies

Let no
behind

man

here believe that the golden age of Methodism


It lies

us.

before us.

In Australia

we

are but four

we have a larger Methodism


world when John Wesley died.

millions in population, but

there

was

in all the

W.

than

H. Fitchett.

" Thou
So

that are

born into

fertile in all

Bound

in fresh

Be not thy

this favored age,

enterprise of thought,

mental conflicts to engage

spirit

contemplation-fraught,

Musing and mourning

Thou must

act

and move,

Must teach thy children more than thou wast taught,


Brighten intelligence, disseminate love

And, through the world around, make way

to worlds above."

Lord Houghton.

THE MISSION OF METHODISM.

remarkable convergence of notable events, such


inauguration

the

as

of

the

Australian

wealth and the consummation of

Common-

Methodist Union

concurrent with the dawning decade of the twentieth century,


"

forces the conviction that

New

occasions

new

teach

duties,"

and compels us to earnestly consider the present


mission

of

Methodism

ourselves whether

much

bute as

and

all

that

to

in

Methodism
the

makes for

and

Australia,
is

destined to contri-

righteousness of the
its

ask

to

nation

welfare, under the

new

conditions as under the old?


"

The

old order changeth, yielding place to new,

And God

fulfils

Himself

in

many ways."

The marvellous development and

characteristic

tendencies of these spacious times have an important bearing

work.

No

on our essential existence and


age has been

this,

and

may

they be interpreted.

so

opulent in

in proportion to our docility

specific

signs

as

and insight

God, who has spoken

at


THE MISSION OF METHODISM

182

sundry times and in divers manners,

upon

ing

us,

He

things

we

as

has yet to say.

take into account

to

are

the

is

bear,

able to

breath-

still

many

the

Therefore we are bound

and

time

circumstance

under which we are to-day called to

and

live

to

Our prime duty is to trace God's purpose


projected upon the pages of His Word, and

serve.

as

interpreted by Providence and contemporaneous history.

Our present advantages

slight,

and we devoutly exclaim,

wrought
ner,

The

?"

"

What hath God

and condition of evangelisation


the

past

is

By

ours.

Mis-

no longer an experiment.

Dur-

century

by leagues of cable
"

few nor

experiences of every variety, man-

sionary enterprise
ing

are neither

is

world has been bound

the

and

gold chains about the feet of God.'

To-day, as never before, we know what

is

as the broad outlines of the Divine purpose

needed,

become

hourly, more clearly discernible in the signs of the

Now we

times.

hail

with yet more hearty greet-

ing that
"

One

To
when

"

God

far-off

Divine event,

which the whole creation moves,"

shall be all

and

in all."

Christ alone can save the world, but Christ can-

not save the world alone.

by

us.

"Now

are

royal priesthood."

God

is

beseeching

we ambassadors."
Methodism,

is

"Ye

men

are a

no mere human


THE LOGIC OF EVENTS
We

institution.

Jesus for good

Christ

in

ordained

before

workmanship, created

God's

are

183
3

works, which

God hath

we should walk

that

them.

in

Our place and sphere are God-appointed.


Contrasting the equipment and opportunities of

Methodism to-day with those of a hundred years


or even a generation ago,
is

we

a sign of God's approval

the twentieth
before,

which

it

is

call to

is

Now,

a responsibility.

of events

unique

Evangel

supremacy of Jesus

exposed

has

the

never

as

Time has

our privilege to publish.


the

His

an inspiration

is

the opportunity of that glorious

is

monstrated
logic

and a clear

The nineteenth century

service.

which

see an advance,

de-

the

and

counterfeit

manifested the true, the only answer to the questions,


the sorrow,

and the

other worlds there


for this

We

is

sin of the

may

human

heart.

"

For

be other words; the word

Christ."

have a theology broad enough to save hu-

manity
"

that the world might taste

The

We

riches of

and

see

His grace."

have an organisation plastic enough to be in

apostolic spirit " all things to all

men,

if

by any

means we can save some."


"

We

What shall I do
What Thou for
belong to that

make it known
all mankind hath done?"

to

THE MISSION OF METHODISM

184

" Sect

which hath no dread of death,

But

spend

will

life

and breath and gold and

pains

To

we hold

succour any wretch, because

That Christ did die for him."

We

God
are we

are grateful to

achievements

nor

for our past history and

ignorant of the strength

and influence and consequent vantage ground which

Methodism has to-day reached.

We

conviction that "

interpretation of

Christ to the
clear

note,

"new Era

reflect

it

is

the

of a distinct character,

and because the

genius of Methodism

accidental kind,
less

"

and unique charm;

characteristic

no

Methodism has an

venture

is

not of any

our precise and pressing duty

than our high and holy privilege to devoutly

upon the place of Methodism,

in Australian

life at this juncture.


I.

IT

HAS AN INTELLECTUAL MISSION.

The degrading curse of ignorance has been


moved; the birthright of our citizens includes

re-

the

opportunity of education, and that without respect


to the erstwhile disabilities
"

of sect or sex.

Knowledge comes and wisdom

and man

rejoices

in

the heritage

of

lingers,'

the

mental

wealth and progress of the greatest intellectual era


in the world's history.

With respect

a twofold duty to discharge

viz.,

to this

To

we have

witness that

THE CLAIMS OF CULTURE


education

and never can

not now,

is

panacea or moral millennium


the tongues of
I

am

"

nothing

services

men and

in

Though

"

a social

be,
I

speak with

of angels and have not love,

nevertheless our appreciations of

and

are well-merited

was born

185

its

Methodism

sincere.

a University, and has ever found cul-

ture a helpmeet

and not a hindrance, an

ally

and

not an enemy.

Whilst,
intellectual

therefore,

we expect

tendencies

than

less

from,

some claim, we urge

We

our right to expect more than others do.


pect Methodism, to meet the
sent occasion,
sibilities

of the

and

new

realise

all

ex-

demands of the prethe splendid respon-

situation.

An

lace

demands an educated ministry.

lips

must keep knowledge."

Our

modern

educated popu"

The

priest's

responsibility in connection with the religious

education

of

the

two

hundred

thousand

young

people entrusted to our Sunday schools for spiritual


guardianship, sendee, and love,
considered by us, and

is

being earnestly

we turn with ardent expec-

tancy to our teachers and scholars for a growing


appreciation of that light and sweetness which
peculiarly their privilege to enjoy

The

exceptional

liant successes

forth our

educational

and

it

is

utilise.

facilities

and

bril-

of our great Collegiate Schools call

grateful congratulation.

The youth of

THE MISSION OF METHODISM

186

Methodism have worthily responded


scholastic provision

made

to the splendid

for them.

The advancement of learning brings to us a grave


charge, but who shall estimate the moral and spiritual gains realisable in the

modern mental

attitude

and aspiration?
"

Let knowledge grow from more

But more of reverence


That mind and

May make

more,

to-

in us dwell,

soul, according: well,

one music as before,

But vaster."
II.

IT

HAS A SOCIAL MISSION.

justification

of

which learning can furnish

is

Material

use

difficulties,

" Social

phrase,

us by the

stern

or,

to

than that

other

Christianity

strenuously
the

urged.

much-abused

problems," are being thrust upon


facts

of our rapidly

progressive

civilisation,

which demand that

Caesar

be King of the modern conscience, then

is

to

if

Christ and not

Christianity must be practically applied.

Religion

can no longer be regarded as something separable


or apart

from human material

demption of earthly
society

mission.

with

life

and the salvation

must henceforth be included

in the

Methodism was begotten of

human sorrow and

The reof human

interests.

sin."

It exists

"
to-

Church's

sympathy
save men.

O'ur future usefulness will b largely determined by


CHRISTIANITY

APPLIED

187

our competency to meet the test of social exigency.

The

Him Whose

followers of

human

struction of

was the recon-

aim,

on the basis of a rea-

society

from

sonable love can never hold themselves aloof


the problems

of

wounds, reform
aspirations of

and

duty

humanity

We

about doing good


multitudes,

Whom

had

and

the abuses,

an

is

heal

respond

to

all

the

instinctive Christian

Methodist

of

function

characteristic

organisation.

To

well-being.

social

Him Who went


Him Who, when He saw the

are servants of

of

compassion

great

on

and

themi,

common people heard gladly


The Word Who wrought,
With human hands, the creed

the
"

of creeds,

In loveliness of perfect deeds

More strong than


Can

the

to

fruits of labour,

a social idea

Who

is

God

to

century

twentieth

room

talent,

its

career

to

and

enjoy the

and place society on the basis of

which

is

eternal,

Our Gospel

and recurring

doomspel of

vice,

provide

and security

labour,

dard of perfection for

poetic thought."

and a Social Being

God? Can Methodism, as of yore, help


make man? With hope we take up our

commission.

tions

all

all

is

humanity's varying condi-

necessities.

Reality,

and Brotherhood

complete to the stan-

It is a

Conscience,

Gospel

not

Justice,

Ser-

and our duty concerning

application to the wants of the age

is

plain and

-THE MISSION OF METHODISM

i88

Man, home, society, commerce,


are to be made sound and sweet at heart.
ence here is to be made glad and blessed.

politics

imperative.

"

And

So nigh

is

grandeur to our dust,

So nigh

is

God

to

man."

we, according to God's promise,

new heaven and

new

Exist-

"

look for a

earth wherein dwelleth righ-

teousness."

The development and triumph of democratic


lay

a solemn responsibility upon

the people.

The

people's will

ing to this truth that " a

us.

We

now

the dominant

is

The momentous duty

power.

is

belong to

ours of witness-

rule

through the people, the end of

boasted progress will be chaos, vanity and


century

ago

man

live in
all

our

evil.

Had

Methodism saved England.

not been for her influence then, " no


to

must

Sovereign people

have a Sovereign God," and that unless God

and

ideas

could

it

tell

what a depth of degradation England would

have sunk."

The world

is

our parish, and until

have become the kingdoms of our


Christ,

the

deepens our conviction


sions,

and our part

sistent

advocacy,

in

and

illustration.

our missionary operations, both


in the
it

Home

of His

Love

will

review of

and Foreign,

Divine Plan of Mis-

calls forth the

assistance

kingdoms

God and

Evangel of Goodwill

need our utterance and

its

and

most per-

extension

not

"

CONTENT OF OUR COMMISSION

189

merely a continuance, but a substantial increase of


support,

may

that our missions

the positions won, but enter

campaign of

not only maintain

upon

more vigorous

further aggressive action.

still

III.

HAS A SPIRITUAL MISSION.

IT

For

" the soul

ment of the

of sin

generate

is

world

sin of the

The

demonstrable.

is

do but

to

real;

the

salvation of the re-

Between these two poles of moral

Our mission includes

humanity.

clamation of a " free,

from

the improve-

equally factual, and the consequent holi-

is

lies

is

You have nothing

"

The

ness evidential.

being

improvement

all

soul."

to save souls."
gUjilt

of

all sin,

for

all

full,

the pro-

and present salvation

sinners for ever."

Having

our-

mercy, we faint not in the procla-

selves obtained

mation of such a glorious Gospel, knowing that


"

He

is

Whose
"

his

own

witness

What we have

best evidence
is

within.

felt

With confidence we
Religion

is

and seen
tell."

the spiritual secret of the art of life

and our age, with an emphasis peculiar to


fies

to the reality of the religious

it,

testi-

feeling of man.

The deepest want and most conscious need of humanity is the Christ of God.
As never before the
consciousness

of

man

is

moral,

consciousness becomes daily

and

this

more Christian.

moral

The

THE MISSION OF METHODISM

9o

soul of things

of

conquest

lute

Christ

and the ultimate abso-

Christian,

is

human

all

is

weary of negations, and of presenta-

tions of a Christianity

without a Christ.

tury of criticism, has resulted in

and

by-

only a matter of time and freedom.

is

Our age

tion

and mind

heart

a,

cen-

renewed revela-

and to-day men are

a rediscovered Christ,

asking pathetically and persistently


"

He Who trod the sea


is He Who came to save?"

where

is

where

The indomitable

conscience speaks, and

tured with phases of doubt beseech us


the

tion of guilt are pleading


in

tor-

show them

to>

Souls burdened with the condemna-

Father.

And

men

those

sweetest

"

We

would see Jesus."

and most potent words

words that cover the eternal passion and conquer


the eternal pain

"

Come

unto

bour and are heavy laden and

we

Me

ye that

all

I will give

you

la-

rest

have a Gospel for the age.

But the contents of our mission are by no means


exhausted,

nor are our spiritual aims realised, in

many from darkness

the turning of

to light,

The saved

from the power of Satan unto God.


soul

is

entrusted

growth in grace.

Methodism
throughout

"

the

agencies have

us

to

We
To

spiritual

culture

and

dare not lessen the charta of

spread

land."

been

for

and

To

specially

Scriptural
this

our

adapted,

holiness

numerous

and while

THE SINNER AND THE SAVIOUR

191

we desiderate a yet bolder policy of aggression on


modern evils, a more vigorous plan of campaign,
and the adoption of multiplied agencies to reach
and reclaim the lapsed masses, we must be equally
anxious for the development of the spiritual life of

whom

those

the

Lord has added unto

us,

such as

are being saved.

The source of power


ness to such

not afar

a,

off.

sublime mission

we

and

lives

nigh at hand, and

His cleansing inspira-

responsive to His prompting touch,

shall receive

The

is

With eyes open for God's present

revelation, hearts waiting for


tion,

give effective-

requisite to

power.

greater things which the

Lord hath done are

but the earnest of the future's greater works.

"All the good the past hath garnered,


All the present yet hath won,

Fades before the glorious future


Like the stars before the sun."
Let us quit the enervation of
boldly forward, our

feet

camp

keeping

life

time

music of our Divine mission.

Then

" greater

things

We

new era

in

"

shall

we

do.

and march
with

the

the promised

are invited to a

Christian experience and achievement.

The problems

that

perplex are as nothing to the

power that propels.


New battles shall be followed
by new triumphs.
This is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.

We

do not serve

a Christ
call

us,"
lift,

MISSION OF METHODISM

THE

192

Who

at the repeated

comes laggardly forth


"

of an alien time.

Best of

all,

God

and our humanity has no gloom

He

no curse

with

is

He

cannot

cannot cleanse, and no sorrow

He

In the presence of abiding: good

cannot soothe.

and

we

infinite destiny

labour.

let

us rise to

the measure of the Divine Spirit's compulsion

live

on the wealth of the unsearchable riches of Christ

and grow

There

bosom of the

in the

is

God.

illimitable

a Divine strategy in Providence

portunity in events that brooks no delay.


spiritual

taken at

no

less

its

than material

knoweth whether thou

art not

In affairs

" there is a tide

come

which

"

and who

to the

kingdom

on to fortune,"

flood leads

an im-

for such a time as this ?"


"

To

serve the present age,

My
O may

calling to fulfil
it

all

To do my

my

powers engage,

Master's will."

Let us cling to the message of the atoning Cross,


seeking the baptism of yet another and fuller Pentecost,

and of future Methodism

it

shall not

be

said,

"The former days were better than these." "The


Lord God of your fathers make you a thousand
times as many more as ye are, and bless as He hath
promised you."

Whillas & Ormiston,

Ltd., Printers, Adelaide.