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deliverer of the timid man from the violent; judging the poor and the oppressed, sovereign of life, health and strength.
“The heart of man is no secret to him that made it. He is present with thee though thou be alone."
" There has recently been brought to light, from the ruins of that old civilization (the Egyptian), almost a complete work, called the maxims of Ptahhotep, which dates from the age of the Pyramids, and which even then refers to the authority of ancient time. It is the most ancient book in the world as far as is known. Rénouf, the great French Egyptian scholar, says that they inculcate the study of wisdom, the duty to parents and superiors, respect for property, the advantages of charitableness, peaceableness and content, of liberality, humility, chastity and sobriety, of truthfulness and justice.' M. Chabas, who first gave the book to the world, says: None of the Christian virtues is forgotten in it: piety, charity, gentleness, self-command in word and action, chastity, the protection of the weak, benevolence toward the humble, deference to superiors, respect for property in its minutest details—all is expressed there, and in extremely clear language'” (“ Beliefs about the Bible,” pp. 160-61).
Is not this clear cut perception of the difference between right and wrong, a proof that even “heathen” nations who had neither the Jewish nor Christian "rule" had yet a standard of judgment with which to test the morality of actions, faultless in its beauty and perfect in its fullness? Contrast their pure teachings with the doctrine of hate and the commands of unrelenting persecution as disclosed in the Old Testament Scriptures, and say which has the best right to the claim of divine inspiration ?
Should we regret that by unveiling the secrets of past generations we are compelled to a higher estimate of their virtue, their intelligence and the purity of their religious conceptions,
than we have hitherto entertained? Should we not rather rejoice that in the morning of his being man was not left without the light of conscience; nor without a safe standard with which to determine right from wrong?
We will not be estopped from admiring winerever found, whether in human character or human institutions; whether in ages past or in present time; whether in religions which have germinated spontaneously in the human breast or been revealed from the skies. Names and pretense amount to little; substance to everything. To us, all that is noble, good or true is divine, and as such we will pay it the homage of our hearts. Says Renan: “Because we do not attach ourselves to any of the forms which captivate human adoration, we do not renounce the enjoyment of all that is good and beautiful in them. No passing vision exhausts divinity; God was revealed before Jesus, God will be revealed after him. Widely unequal and so much the more divine, as they are the greater and more spontaneous, the manifestations of the God concealed in the depths of the human conscience are all of the same order. Jesus cannot, therefore, belong exclusively to those who call themselves his disciples. He is the common honor of all who bear a human heart. His glory consists, not in being banished from history; we render him a truer worship by showing that all history is incomprehensible without him."
The age of dogma is fast passing away. Fear is becoming less and less a controlling power with the intelligent and devout. Free thought has possessed the thinking minds of the laity and has even invaded the pulpit. Dogmas which have been frozen into the brain have been thawed into a more humane consistence by the warm pulsations of the heart. Doctrines which we heard in our infancy are no longer proclaimed in their rigid, forbidding aspects. Tears of love and pity have quenched the fires of hell. Scientific facts are accepted without regard to a possible conflict between them and Scriptural exegesis. In short, the minds of men are being disenthralled from the bondage of superstition, and are beginning to rejoice in that liberty which is the life of the soul and the light of the world.
APPENDIX A. The following notices of the press, together with the “Challenge,” as set forth below, we copy from The Catholic Union and Times, of Buffalo, N. Y.:
“ The author completely turns the tables on the doughty colonel. We commend the volume to all who would see the assumptions and crudities and mistakes of Ingersoll turned inside out, upside down, end for end, and over and over." - Chicago Star and Covenant (leading Universalist paper in the Western States).
“There is neither truth, nor life, nor argument lest in Ingersoll when Father Lambert has done with him.”—Chicago Western Catholic..
“We hope this pamphlet will find numerous readers among non-Catholics who desire to see the rot and rant of Ingersoll rubbed out by the learning and logic of Father Lambert."-San Francisco Monitor.
“We purpose placing a copy in the hands of every delegate to the approaching Thinker's Convention in Rochester, and shall challenge them individually and collectively to reply.”Froin The Catholic Union and Times, August 2, 1883.
“ The author takes up and thoroughly riddles the impious blasphemer.”Louisville Western Recorder (Prot.)
“An earnest and keen reasoner. The pamphlet should have many readers.” -New York Herald.
We clip the following from the Christian Witness and Advocate of Bible Holiness, Boston, December 18, 1884:
“ Notes on Ingersoll,' by Rev. L. A. Lambert. Seventh edition; tooth thousand. Published by the Catholic Publication Society, Buffalo, N. Y. This remarkable book is still selling, and Colonel Ingersoll will find it a hard book to answer. As the publishers say, “it is growing on them.' We are now engaged on the eighth edition, 30,000 copies, which will bring the total number published up to 130,000. Two editions have been “pirated' in England, and one in Canada; and we have printed a large edition in London ourselves. In addition, the work has been translated into half a dozen different languages in as many different countries."
APPENDIX B. “ The history of Chrishna Zeus is contained principally in the Baghavat Gita, the episode portion of the Mahabarat Bible. The book is believed to be divinely inspired like all other Bibles, and the Hindoos claim for it an antiquity of 6,000 years. Like Christ he was of humble origin, and like him had to encounter opposition and persecution. But he seems to have been more successful in the propagation of his doctrines, for, it is declared,' he soon became surrounded by many earnest followers, and the people in vast multitudes followed him, crying aloud: “This is indeed the Redeemer promised to our fathers.”' His pathway was thickly strewn with miracles, which consisted in healing the sick, curing lepers, restoring the dumb, deaf, and the blind, raising the dearl, aiding the weak, comforting the sorrow-stricken, relieving the oppressed, casting out devils,
He came not ostensibly to destroy the previous religion, but io purify it of its impurities, and to preach a better doctrine. He came, as he declared, “to reject evil and restore the reign of good, and redeem man from the consequences of the fall, and deliver the oppressed earth from its load of sin and suffering.' His disciples believed him to be God himself, and millions worshipped him as such in the time of Alexander the Great, 330 B. C.
The hundreds of counterparts to the history of Christ, proving their histories to be almost identical, will be seen from the belief of his disciples. 1. In his miraculous birth by a virgin. 2. The mother and child being visited by shepherds, wise men, and the angelic host, who joyously sang : “ In thy delivery, oh! savored among women, all nations shall have cause to exult.” 3. The edict of the tyrant ruler Cansa ordering all the first-born to be put to death. 4. The miraculous escape of the mother and child from his bloody decree by the parting of the waves of the river Jumna to permit them to pass through on dry ground. 5. The early retirement of Chrishna to a desert. 6. His baptism or ablution in the river Ganges, corresponding to Christ's baptism in Jordan. 7. His transfiguration at Madura, where he assured his disciples that “present or absent, I will always be with you.” 8. He had a favorite disciple (Arjoon), who was his bosom friend, as John was Christ's. 9. He was anointed with oil by women. . . . Like Christ he taught much by parables and precepts. A notable sermon preached by him is also reported. On one occasion, having returned from a ministerial journey, as he entered Madura, the people came out in crowds to meet him, strewing the ground with the branches of cocoanut trees, and desired to hear him; he addressed them in parables, the conclusion and moral of one of which, called the parable of the fishes, runs thus : “And thus it is, oh, people of Madura, that you ought to protect the weak and each other, and not retaliate upon an enemy the wrongs
have done you.' .. 'And thus it was,' says a writer, that Chrishna spread among the people the holy doctrines of purest morality, and initiated his hearers into the exalted principles of charity, of self-denial, and selfrespect, at a time when the desert countries of the west were inhabited only by savage tribes.'”—The World's Sixteen Crucified Saviours, pp. 98, 99.