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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 48

His Disciples Would Know

His Disciples Would Know

that there was another world. (Applause.) And yet He said, "Go into all the world and preach the Gospel." And He knew then that it would be 1492 years before anybody went. (Laughter.) Well, if it was worth while to have signs follow believers in the Old World, assuredly it was worth while to have the signs follow the believers in the New World. And the only reason that signs should follow would be to convince the unbeliever; and there are as many unbelievers now as ever. And the signs are as necessary to-day as they ever were. (Applause.) I would like a few myself. (Laughter.) This frightdful declaration, "He that believeth and is baptised shall be saved, but he that believeth not shall be damned," has filled this world with agony and crime. Every letter of this passage has been sword and fagot; every word has been dungeon and chain. And that passage made the sword of persecution drip with innocent blood for ten centuries. That passage made the horizon of 1000 years lurid with the fagot's flames. That passage contradicts the Sermon on the Mount. That passage travesties the Lord's Prayer. That passage turns the splendid religion of deed and duty into the cruel, cruel superstition of creed and cruelty. I deny it. It is infamous. Christ never said it.

Now I come to Luke. (Laughter.) And it is sufficient to say that Luke substantially agrees with Matthew and with Mark. But let us first read. I like it. "Be ye therefore merciful as your Father is also merciful." Good! "Judge not, and you shall not be judged; condemn not, and you shall not be condemned; and page 10 forgive and you shall be forgiven" Good! "Give and it shall be given unto you" good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and runniug over. Good. I like it. "For with the same measure that ye mete withal, it shall be measured to you again." He agrees substantially with Mark, he agrees substantially with Matthew.

And I come at last to the nineteenth chapter: "And Zaccheus stood, and said unto the Lord, 'Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken anything from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold.' And Jesus said unto him, 'This day is salvation come to this house.'" That's good doctrine. He didn't ask Zaccheus what he believed. He didn't ask him, "Do you believe in the Bible? Do you believe in the five points? Have you ever been baptised? (Roars.) Sprinkled? Oh! immersed?" (Great laughter.) "Half of my goods I give to the poor, and if I have taken anything from any man by false accusation, I restore him fourfold," and Christ said "This day is salvation come to this house." Good. (Applause.)

I read also in Luke that Christ, when upon the cross, forgave his murderers; and that is considered the shining gem in the crown of His mercy—that He forgave His murderers; that He forgave those that drove the nails in His hands and in His feet; that planted the spear in His side; the soldier that, in the hour of death offered him in mockery the bitterness to drink.