Page:Satires and profanities -microform- (1884).djvu/99

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SATIRES AND PROFANITIES.

as obstructions. Hannibal, whose business it is to get into Italy from Gaul, sets about blasting the Alps. Stephenson, whose business it is to get from Manchester to Liverpool, sets about filling up Chat Moss. The same man, who muffles himself in as many furs as he can get in Greenland, will strip himself to a linen robe in Jamaica. Luther said that the human mind is like a drunken peasant on horseback: he is rolling off on the right, you push him up, he then rolls over on the left. Exactly so; and because one sage, seeing him roll down to the right, has pushed him up on the right, while another sage, seeing him roll down to the left, has pushed him up on the left, are the two sages to be accounted antagonists? Now as a wise man in the course of his existence meets errors of many sorts, some of a quite opposite tendency to others, and as he proves his wisdom by applying to each error its relative or pertinent truth, the rule is almost rigidly exact: that the wiser the man the more of apparent contradictions can be found in his writings or conversation treating of actual life.

But deity is beyond the sphere of the relative and conditioned. When deity speaks and deity reports the speeches, all should be absolute truth transparently self-consistent, else what advantage or gain have we by the substitution of God for Man? Why bring in God to utter and record what could have been as well uttered and recorded by man?

Everything for which we love and venerate the man Jesus becomes a bitter and absurd mockery when attributed to the Lord Christ. The full heart is praising the man; you turn him into God, a ruinous salvo is added to the praise.

He went about doing good: if God, why did he not do all good at once? He cured many sick: if God, why did he not give the whole world health? He associated with publicans and sinners: if God, why did he make publicans and sinners at all? He preached the kingdom of heaven: if God, why did he not bring