Page:Our Common Land (and other short essays).djvu/98

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A MORE EXCELLENT WAY OF CHARITY.

His truth stand on its own merits. If it be a real need of His children, trust Him in His own good time to make this plain to them. Preach it by word, by deed, by patient abiding; but do not use bribes, or even what look like bribes, to make men take it in. Depend on it, it cannot be taken so. It has been accepted in this and other ages by men ready to meet poverty, toil, scorn, death, rather than be false to it; it has been accepted with acclaim by multitudes who felt in it the answer to their difficulties, the great good news for their lives. The lowest natures, when they have received it, have done so through the noble feelings which are latent in the worst of us. It is only through appeal to these—their fortitude, their reverence—that it can come home to them. I cannot believe that God's truth has ever entered one human heart wrapped up in a bribe. Let it speak quietly for itself; it is very strong. Shall we doubt it? Our special form of it, or application