The Kingdom Of God In The Land Of Its Origin -- By: George F. Herrick

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 047:188 (Oct 1890)
Article: The Kingdom Of God In The Land Of Its Origin
Author: George F. Herrick

The Kingdom Of God In The Land Of Its Origin

Rev. George F. Herrick

OUR daily press is always in the midst of the throes of a heroic struggle to satisfy the gaping and feverish desire of the public for the news. This desire is voracious and indiscriminating, and is usually fed on wind, on endless details of the petty squabbles of little men, and alas! often on the garbage of the gutters of human society, which, in deference to health and decency, ought to be covered and disinfected, not disclosed.

Ours is not a thinking age, and those who want something better than amusement seek entertainment rather than stimulus to reflection. Yet if we will take the trouble to bring within our vision, not the evanescent scenes of the hour, but the trend of the mighty forces that make for righteousness in the earth, we shall find impressive evidence of that basal and formative truth of human history, without which all historic study and all attempt to write history is mere wandering, viz., that God is slowly moulding human development toward truth and virtue. He is doing this slowly, because the conditions of the restoration of a moral being deflected from rectitude—the conditions of his discipline—so demand.

The object of this paper, however, is not at all philosophical discussion: it is the statement of important facts which have come under the observation of the writer during his residence in the East.

Twenty-five years is not a long period in the life of an empire. A nation does not grow into being or fall into decay within that time. History tells of no national decay more rapid than that of the old Roman Empire. Yet it continued through a period of two hundred years. There has never been national growth more phenomenal than that of our own country. Yet we are well started on the second century of our national life.

Occidental life is proverbially rapid; Oriental life, we are all sure, is exceedingly slow. We travel, by express, a thousand miles a day: the Asiatic still plods, on horseback, along a bridle-path, or, more recently, in a springless wagon, over his twenty-four miles in twenty-four hours. He smokes his nargileh and takes no note of time. He scratches the ground instead of ploughing it: he threshes his grain as his ancestors did three thousand years ago. He puts off his shoes and wears his hat when he enters a dwelling: he pulls a saw instead of pushing it: he builds a city with mole tracks through it, and if he has streets subsequently, he burns out the paths to make them in: by his watch it is always twelve o’clock when the sun sets.

And with all this, if you would find the portion of o...

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