Page:Literature and Dogma (1883).djvu/112

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lowed righteousness by his own power, or out of self-interest and self-love, but said and felt that he followed it in thankful self-surrender to 'the Eternal who loveth righteousness,' and that 'the Eternal ordereth a good man's going and maketh his way acceptable to Himself,'[1]—so, in the restoration effected by Jesus, the motive which is of force is not the moral motive that inwardness, mildness, and self-renouncement make for man's happiness, but a far stronger motive, full of ardent affection and gratitude, and which, though it really has its ground and confirmation in the fact that inwardness, mildness, and self-renouncement do make for man's happiness, yet keeps no consciousness of this as its ground. For it acquired a far surer ground in personal devotion to Jesus Christ, who brought the doctrine to his disciples and made a passage for it into their hearts; in believing that he was indeed the Christ come from God; in following him, loving him. And in the happiness which thus believing in Jesus Christ, following him, and loving him, gives, it found the mightiest of sanctions.

5.

And thus was the great doctrine of the Old Testament: To righteousness belongs happiness! made a true and potent word again. Jesus Christ was the Messiah to restore the all things of Israel,[2]—righteousness, and happiness with righteousness; to bring light and recovery after long days of darkness and ruin, and to make good the belief written on Israel's heart: The righteous is an everlasting foundation![3] But we have seen how in the hopes of the nation and in the promises of prophecy this true and vital belief of Israel was mixed with a quantity of what we have called Aberglaube or extra-belief, adding all manner of shape and circumstance to the original thought. The kingdom of David and Solo-

  1. Ps. xi, 7; xxxvii, 23.
  2. Matth., xvii, 11; Acts, iii, 21.
  3. Prov., x, 25.