How do changes in the environment of men affect the moral quality of their acts? How do circumstances affect the kind of act that will be successful? During the Chinese revolution of 1912 in Peking and Nanking, looting leaders of mobs and plundering soldiers when captured were promptly decapitated without trial. Was such an act right? Was it necessary? What conditions would justify such an act in the United States? Would the same act tend equally to preserve the government in both countries?
Subjects for Further Study.
(1) Flood Stories among Primitive Peoples. Worcester, Genesis 361-373; Hastings, Dict. of Bible Vol. II, 18-22; Extra Vol. 181-182; Encyc. Brit.
(2) The Scientific Basis of the Biblical Account of the Flood. Ryle, Early Narratives of Gen. 112-113; Davis, Gen. and Semitic Traditions 130-131; Driver, Genesis 82-83, 99; Sollas, Age of the Earth, 316 ff.
(3) Compare the treatment accorded their rivals and competitors for power in their various fields by the following persons: Solomon, Caesar Borgia, the late Empress Dowager of China (Tz’u-hsi), Bismarck, the great political leaders of today in Great Britain and the United States and the modern combinations of capital known as trusts.
I Kings 1; Machiavelli, The Prince; Douglas, Europe and the Far East, Ch. 17.
Did these different methods under the special circumstances result in the survival of the fittest? The fittest morally?
THE PIONEER’S INFLUENCE UPON A NATION’S IDEALS.
ABRAHAM, THE TRADITIONAL FATHER OF HIS RACE.—Gen. 12:1-8; 13:1-13; 16; 18, 19; 21:7; 22:1-19.
Hist. Bible I, 73-94.
Prin of Pol., 160-175.
Jehovah said to Abraham, Go forth from thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, to the land that I will show thee, that I may make of thee a great nation; and I will surely bless thee, and make thy name great, so that thou shalt be a blessing, I will also bless them that bless thee, and him that curseth thee will I curse, so that all the families of the earth shall ask for themselves a blessing like thine own. So Abraham went forth, as Jehovah had commanded him.—Gen. 12:1-4. (Hist. Bible.)
By faith Abraham when he was called, obeyed to go out into a place which he was to receive for an inheritance; and he went out not knowing whither he went. By faith he became a sojourner in the land of promise as in a land not his own, dwelling in tents, with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise; for he looked for the city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.—Heb. 11:8-10.
He that findeth his life shall lose it; and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it—Matt. 10:39.