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His Opening Sermon

His Opening Sermon image
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Tbe Rev. Charles A. Young, who has ;ust been called to the pastorate of the Church of Christ, on South University ivenue, made his flrst appearance before an Ann Arbor audience at the anión services held in the Baptist church last Sunday evening. The audience room was fi'.li l to its utmost capacity. The services were opened by jjanthem by the Baptist cb'irch choir, md the Rev. Mr. Bradshuw, of the Congregational church, read the opening Scripture lesson from Matthew xvi. 13-28. The opening prayer was offered by the Rev. Mr. Gelston, of the Presbyterian church. Rev. Mr. Young was tnen introduced by the pastor of the Baptist church, who extended to him a hearty welcome from the ministers and churches of the city. Mr. Young, in a few brief words, expressed his gratitude for the cordial and hearty welcome which he had received.and called attention to the central motto on the wall back of the pulpit, "One is your master Christ, and all ye are brethren." He then delivered a clear and forcible sermón, taking for his text John xx. 20,21. The followine íb a condensed report of the sermón: "This gospel of John has not only reflisted the attacks of Baur, but is destined to be the bulwark of biblical truth in the battles of biblical theology. Wac6 has epitomized it in three words: "Jesus- unbelief- faith." The opening chapters reveal the person and characier of the Son of man- as Jesus in this gospel seems fond of calling himself- whois declared by the spirit of holiness tobe the Son of God; the succeeding chapters picture the development of faith and unbelief; and the closing chapters portray the culmination of unbelief in the crucifixion of Jesus, and the culmination of faith in the presence of his glorious resurrection, so that even doubting Thomas exclaimed, 'Mj Lord andmy God.' Without considering the authentic document which bears indubitable testimony totheauthorship of the Gospel of John, the gospel closes by distinctly stating the purpose of recording the wonderful words and works of Christ. "Jesus was his proper name, given by the Holy Spirit, 'He shall be called Jesus, because he shall save his people from their sins.' The Christ means the annointed one - annointed from on high to be our priest to absolve us from sin- Iour prophet to teach us, and our king to rule over us. Both saint and sinner íeed a high priest to intercede and propitiate. "Jesus told the ruler who represented the Sanhedrin.'Ye must bebornagain.i Man is a part of nature, 'but there is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body.' The testimony of history and conscience, as well as revelation, is, 'Ye must be bom again.' "Who shall teach ub? Buddha and irahma? Wise men like Sócrates in ithens, or Spencer in London? Shall nature teach us to pray 'Our Father?' Jesus is the Way, the Truth, the Life.' I "Jesus is the annointed kícg- a king, I ïeloved brethren in the ministry, for Brtom I never make any apologies - a ■ ing whom I love to serve, iu whom I I have glorious liberty. Let us enthrone I Mm in our hearts, let us 'crown him I Loid of all.' I "But Jesus is not only the Messiah of ■ prophecy, the culmination of that diI vine history so distinct froro the annals ■ al Greece and Rome, but he is also 'the ■ on of God.' The Jew might have ac■ Kpted Jesus as the Messiah simply, but ■ hen he said 'My Father worketh B'itherto and I work,' they were ready B'ostone him. "Here is where I would have you gird I 'pthe loins of your faith and be strong. 1 1 i thank God that the humanity of Jesus ■ ■ being emphasized as never before. ■ ïnt the humanity of Jesus is not all of I ftie Christ. In the midst of many mis■ "oderstandings he calmly possessed his I Mul in conscious communion with God, Se towers above humanity as Mont ■ Hanc an(j Mount Chimborazo tower ■ bove the plains below. One must land far away from Christ to think , I Aat the Son of God has only the stature ht a man, however perfect. The closer Bestand to the Son of God, the higher ■ ta towers above us. No feeling man ■ a stand close enough to the Christ to I thiilled by the pulsing of his great ■ ann heart, without realizing tüat I 'Mie he is human he is also superhu'■aan' No thoughtful man can read his I 'onderful words, so sublimely simple, I 'ithont saying with the officers sent to ■ '"est him, 'Never man spake like this ■an.' No purposeful man can study ■ "'Work of Christ'a personal humanity ■ ""l historie achievements, without tesIing with Nicodemus, 'Rabbi, we i ■ ftciw that thou art a teacher come from God, for no man can do the miracles that thou doest except God be with him.' "I shall not appeal to his recorded miracles touight. To those who accept the Bible as the Word of God, they are indubitable evidences of Christ's superhuman power. There are many minds to whorn tho miracles do not, cannot, appeal directly, as they did to those who witnessed them. We have many more evidences of the divinity of Christ than this Spirit-guided apostle has recorded in this greatest of all in. spired books. If Christ be not the Son of God, there is no reason in history. To deny this central truth of the Christian pystem we must walk backward throueh the centuries and destroy all that is sacrecl and sublime. With the hand of iconoclasm we must Uestroy the poems of Milton and Dante, the paintings and statuesof Michael Angelo and Leonardo DeVinci. Yea, we must not only destroy our art and literatura but our laws and liberties. "During the civil war, a noble boy in blue shouldered his musket to fight for the flag we love. He was mortally wounded by a brother in gray, who fought for the state of his birth. While lying in the ward the dying boy kept constantly calling, 'Motherl Mother! Mother!' The physician telegraphed his mother. She came; the doctor met her at the door and forbade her entering the ward, fearing the ezcitement would cause the instant death of the boy. For three long hours tfee mother stood ontside and heard her darling boy calling for her. At last she said, 'Docton I must go in. My heart will break out here. Just let me take the nurse'8 place. Hl not speak a word.' The nurse passed out. The mother noieelessly took her place, but the first time her delicate hand touched his brow, without seeing her,he said : 'Nurse, that feels like my mother's hand.' "Jesus, these eyes have never Been That radiant form of thine, The veil of sense han&s dark between Tby blessed face and mine." "Home-sick for our father's house, when thou dost touch our sin-sick hearts, we know, even in the darkness of sin and death, that it is the Father's hand in th e person of 'Jesus the Christ the Son of God.'"


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