Page:Vactican as a World Power.djvu/46

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ran a great risk. Since this was a world which gave the Emperor things that are God's, the temptation arose to give to God what was given the Emperor, and in the same way. The Kingdom of Heaven which the Galilean had founded yearned towards fulfilment, but the Imperial state in which this fulfilment was to occur forced the simple Dove to become cunning as the serpent. This was the first profound contradiction in the bosom of the Church, and on it Jesus has looked with scorn. Satan could not be driven out with Satan; and a house divided against itself could not stand. A second contradiction was associated with this the contradiction between the Gospel and antique civilization. Both had arisen from religious sources, and the conflict which followed the first confluence of the two realms was very soon looked upon as a quarrel between lovers. The New Testament went its way among the peoples in the common Greek language. Its authors, though virtually all Jews, were not without contact with the thought and the language of pagan culture. When Paul spoke of the "community," he approximated to the political consciousness of the Greeks.

The fourth Gospel opens in the style of Heraclitus. The image of the shepherd and sheep, representing pastor and souls, the sacred signs of bread and wine, were held by Christians in common with the devotees of strange mysteries. Already Paul, and after him many another, had to give warning that Christian must not be confounded with heathen. As Jesus drank from the jug of the pagan woman at the well, the first thinkers of the young Church, which was still so dependent upon urban culture for its terminology, wore the phi- losopher's mantle and discoursed upon the great ideas in the for- mula: in which Socrates, Plato and the Stoics sought to phrase the prob- lems of God, the world and humankind. That objects situated in space and time are only shadows of spiritual reality; that the cosmos rests upon the bosom of Eternal Reason, which orders all things and gives them a purpose: these declarations sounded like ancient fore- bodings of the truth acclaimed in the New Testament. Yes, the Christ who is eternal and who from the beginning spoke as the eternal Logos to the heart of mankind, appeared in human form in Jesus, who is the Revealer and Fulfiller of ideas and intuitions which at the very beginning were given to the human soul but were then half blotted