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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 117 pages of information about Addresses by the right reverend Phillips Brooks.
shut your eyes to certain facts, you not simply say an infinitely absurd and foolish thing, but you dishonor your human life if you say that you have done in any day of your life or in all the days of your life put together, the very best that you could, or been the very best man that you could be.  You! what are you?  Again I say, The child of God, and this which you have been, what is it?  Look over it, see how selfish it has been, see how material it has been, how it has lived in the depths when it might have lived on the heights, see how it has lived in the little narrow range of selfishness when it might have been as broad as all humanity, nay, when it might have been as the God of humanity.  Don’t dare to say that in any day of your life, or in all your life together, you have done the best that you could.  The Pharisee said it when he went up into the temple, and all the world has looked on with mingled pity and scorn at the blindness of the man who stood there and paraded his faithfulness; while all the world has bent with a pity that was near to love, a pity that was full of sympathy because man recognized his condition and experience, for the poor creature grovelling upon the pavement, unwilling and unable even to look upon the altar, but who, standing afar off, said, “God be merciful to me a sinner!” Whatever else you say, don’t say, “I have been the very best I could.”  That means that you have not merely lived in the rooms of your imprisonment, but that you have been satisfied to count them the only possible rooms of your life, and that the great halls of your liberty have never opened themselves before you.  Shall not they open themselves somehow to us to-day, my friends?  Shall we not turn away from this hour and go back into our business, into our offices, into the shops, into the crowded streets, bearing new thoughts of the lives that we might live, feeling the fetters on our hands and feet, feeling many things as fetters which we have thought of as the ornament and glory of our life, determined to be unsatisfied forever until these fetters shall be stricken off and we have entered into the full liberty which comes to those alone who are dedicated to the service of God, to the completion of their own nature, to the acceptance of the grace of Christ, and to the attainment of the eternal glory of the spiritual life, first here and then hereafter, never hereafter, it may be, except here and now, certainly here and now, as the immediate, pressing privilege and duty of our lives?  So let us stand up on our feet and know ourselves in all the richness and in all the awfulness of our human life.  Let us know ourselves children of God, and claim the liberty which God has given to every one of his children who will take it.  God bless you and give some of you, help some of us, to claim, as we have never claimed before, that freedom with which the Son makes free!

V. THE CHRIST IN WHOM CHRISTIANS BELIEVE.

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