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Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria University College, Wellington N.Z. Vol. 21, No. 2. March 27, 1958

The Gentle Apostate

The Gentle Apostate

There is nothing more divinely illuminating and uplifting than to read the writings of Paul, the Apostate of the Gentiles. They can be found in a volume called Holy Writ, which is well-read and well misunderstood by Protestants and well-unread and well understood by R.C.'s.

One of the most striking of the views of this Gentle Apostle is his condemnation of the breeding of pedigree dogs and of the controversies of lawyers. So we find him writing in Titus III, 10-11, "But take no part in vain researches into pedigrees and controversies that wrangle over points of the law; they are useless folly."

Equally striking was this gentle apostate's love for strong drink. So we find him writing to Timothy (I Tim. 5, 23-24) "No, do not confine thyself to water any longer; take a little wine to relieve thy stomach." There was no doubt that he was a man who enjoyed the best things in life. So we find him in I Tim. 4, 1-6, condemning false asceticism. Apparently only deacons had to restrict themselves in the use of the bottle as one of their qualifications is that they are not given to deep drinking. (I Tim. 3, 8-9).

What I do find a little odd, however, is this gentleman's condemnation of nursery rhymes in I Tim. 4, 7, where he writes, "leave foolish nursery tales alone."

What always beats me is how a chap can reconcile studying (or worse still) teaching philosophy with being a Christian. For we have only to read the penny-dreadful, Holy Writ, to find Paul, the Apostate of the Gentle, warning us of the evil of philosophy. Thus in Colossians 2, 8-9, he wrote "take care not to let anyone cheat you with his philosophizings". . . . And to think that the Professor of Philosophy is a clergyman. What a scandal!

The girls of today would do well to read the words of this man of the world. How many of them are aware that it is a sin for them to have plaited hair, or to wear pearls, or to wear rich clothes? (I Tim. 2, 9-11). (Note that he did not say that it was a sin for girls to wear clothes. It is only wrong for them to wear rich clothes.)

Anyrate, it is my advice to you all to read this delightful work and to put into practice its marvellous teachings. That means, girls, that you will have to take off your pearls and unplait your hair. It also means (E.U. members take particular notice of this) that we should frequently imbibe the juice of the grape for the sake of our stomachs.

The Red Dean, D.D. (Moscow).

Drawing of old man