The Message of Jesus to Our Modern Life. III

Shailer Mathews
1914 The Biblical World  
This course is published in nine leaflets issued on the fifteenth of each month from September, 19z4, to June, 1915. It is sent free to all members of the AMERICAN INSTITUTE OF SACRED LITERATURE enrolling for this course. Membership in the INSTITUTE may be secured by sending the annual membership fee of fifty cents, and four cents for postage, to the headquarters of the INSTITUTE, at the University of Chicago. PART I. THE PRINCIPLES OF JESUS STUDY III THE LIFE OF THE SPIRIT There are two ways
more » ... here are two ways of approaching the relations of Jesus to our modern life: We can study the conditions of the modern world and see how they need teaching like that of Jesus, or we can study the teaching of Jesus and see how it can and should be extended into the world of practical affairs in the midst of which we live. There are advantages in each of these methods, but the second seems preferable, for the reason that it enables us to put the emphasis precisely where Jesus put it; namely, on the sort of life which a man must possess if he is to render genuine Christian service to his day and generation. For this reason we study the fundamentals of Jesus' teaching regarding life as he himself lived it and as we as his followers should live it, before we study the application of his principles and ideals to the problems of conduct. We must live before we can act. Further, such a method accords with the purpose of the church. For the work of the church is primarily spiritual. If our churches can produce men and women ready at any cost to order their lives upon the example and teaching of Jesus, the problems of society will be much more quickly solved than under any other conditions. As a matter of fact, most social problems are never answered; they are outgrown. By virtue of a new view of life, new desires to be helpful, new insight into evil, new reliance on God, new appreciation of justice and fraternity, we become dissatisfied with things as we find them and wish to improve 431
doi:10.1086/475180 fatcat:rohzxdsutzbtbhyvkf6jhfsf6i