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ment that does not involve and require activity of the human will. We are essentially wills; intellect and

. affection only furnish the material for action; it is the will that chooses right or wrong. The beginning, middle, and end of religion is in the will. If the Calvinist had only recognized that we are to work out our own salvation, he would not have stopped with his contention that God must work in us to will and to do. And if the Arminian had only recognized that there is no good action of the human will that is not coincident with and dependent upon a working in us of the divine Spirit, he would not have stopped with urging men to work out their own salvation. The pendulum has swung between these two extremes. ever since the history of thought began; whole systems of theology have been built now upon divine sovereignty and again upon human freedom; the only rational conclusion is that both are true and must be embraced in our creed, whether we can understand their connection or not. Like the convex and the concave sides of a curve, like the positive and negative poles of the magnet, they are mutually dependent and equally necessary. Because God works in us to will and to do, we are all the more to work out our own salvation with fear and trembling.

The beginning of Christian character is a decision of the will. I will henceforth serve God, and not live for myself. That is the A B C of religion. The man who says that in his inmost heart is a Christian. Not a developed Christian, but an infantile Christian. He may not yet know how great his sins are, nor how helpless he is; he may not yet know how great Christ is, nor how vast the price Christ has paid for his redemption. But that one act of the will contains in it the germ of Christianity, and it will develop into Christian acting and living. But not of itself. The same Holy Spirit who led the man to this beginning will guarantee that his experience has a middle stage also. Sanctification and perseverance will follow conversion. The will of man will be called on to decide again and again whether it will accept and ratify the will of God. When Dewey took Manila, the Philippines became ours, but the subjection of the outlying provinces has required a good many after-years of care and of fighting. There is no Christian progress except by renewed decisions of the will, new renunciations of offered evil, new graspings of offered good. Character is not a gift, but an achievement, and it is only he that endures to the end that is saved.

It is God who assures the end, even as he assured the beginning and the middle of our experience. Yet immortality and the resurrection body are as much dependent upon our own wills as were our conversion and our growth in grace. To them who seek for glory and honor and immortality God gives eternal life. All who want heaven, enough to will heaven, shall have heaven. “In your patience ye shall win your souls,” says Christ. By free will you shall get possession of your own being. Losing one's soul is just the oppo

. site, namely, losing one's free will, by disuse renouncing freedom, becoming a victim of habit, nature, circumstance, and this is the cutting off and annihilation of true manhood. A modern novelist has said: “To be in hell is to drift; to be in heaven is to steer. In heathen fable, men were turned into beasts, and

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even into trees. The story of Circe is a parable of human fate—men may become apes, tigers, or swine. They may lose their higher powers of consciousness and will. All life that is worthy of the name may cease, while still existence of a low animal type is prolonged. We see precisely these results of sin in this world. We have reason to believe that the same laws of development will operate in the world to come. Death is not degeneracy ending in extinction, nor punishment ending in extinction—it is atavism that returns, or tends to return, to the animal type. As normal development is from the brute to man, so abnormal development is from man to the brute. And this is the meaning of the Scripture: “Man that is in honor, and understandeth not, is like the beasts that perish.”

I go even further than this, and maintain that Scripture intimates the resurrection body to be the product of the glorified spirit, the effect and expression of the emancipated will. Body is in continual flux, and this continual replacement of old particles by new, while the spirit continues identical and supreme, is evidence that this same spirit may animate an entirely new body in the life to come. Body is plastic in God's hands, and matter is only the manifestation of his mind and will. He who created the present body can create another better suited to the uses of the spirit. The soul that is freed from the thraldom of sin, and has entered into union with God, will attain complete mastery over self and will be endowed with God's power, even over nature, so that it can take to itself the material needed for self-expression just as the rosebush takes what belongs to it. Soul determines body, and not body soul, as the materialist imagines. As Jesus laid down his life that he might take it again, so the Christian yields up his spirit in death, only that he may win a larger and better life. As Christ raised up the temple of his body on the third day, so the Christian receives power from God to construct for himself a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. And the final triumph of the purified will is its subjection of the flesh to the spirit, and its bringing both body and soul in adoring worship to the feet of the Redeemer.

On this Independence Day how solemn are the lessons which this subject teaches us! We are in the midst of a struggle for liberty. Our destiny depends on using our wills, and using them aright. Once to every man, as well as to every nation, comes the moment to decide whether he will be a freeman or a slave. To be a Christian, a son of God, a possessor of imitiortal life, requires a decision of the will at the beginning, and many subsequent decisions all along our Christian way. But in making that initial decision we shall find that God is already working in us to will and to do, and every after-decision will only convince us more and more that a power not our own has laid hold of us—a power to break the chains of habit and to make us masters of ourselves. Sluggishness and delay will only rivet those chains and make it harder to secure our freedom. On this great day, fraught with so many memories and hopes, let us sign our declaration of independence and be free for evermore!

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The greatest picture of the world is Raphael's picture of the transfiguration. This supreme place has been accorded to it not solely on account of its artistic merits, although these are unquestionably great. It has touched the universal heart rather because it reflects and expresses the subconscious and inarticulate longings of humanity, and with these longings has shown also the true and all-sufficient source of supply. No work of art can be truly great unless it somehow suggests the unseen and eternal. This work more perfectly than any other has in it this greatest of suggestions. The picture of the transfiguration was the last work of Raphael, and it was the consummate flower of his genius. At his funeral in the Pantheon at Rome it was hung over his coffin, as if to intimate that the spiritual and the heavenly had been the chief inspiration of the painter's life and work.

In this picture Raphael has tried to set before us two separate scenes; scenes so far apart in point of space that to put them upon one canvas offends our sense of congruity until we recognize the bond of spiritual connection between them. These scenes are described

. in quick succession in the seventeenth chapter of Mat

1 A sermon preached at the dedication of the Calvary Baptist Church, Rochester, N. Y., May 18, 1910.

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