Addresses by the right reverend Phillips Brooks eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 117 pages of information about Addresses by the right reverend Phillips Brooks.

I want to read to you again the words of Jesus in the eighth chapter of the Gospel of St. John:  “Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on Him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.  They answered him, We be Abraham’s seed, and were never in bondage to any man:  how sayest thou, Ye shall be made free?  Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin.  And the servant abideth not in the house for ever:  but the Son abideth ever.  If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.”  The service of God is not self-restraint, but self-indulgence.  That is the first truth of all religion.  That is the truth which we found uttered in those words of Jesus when we were thinking of them the other day.  That is the truth to which we return as we come back again to think of those words and all that they mean and all that the speaker of them means to us and to our lives.  When we remember that truth, when we recognize that no man is ever to be saved except by the fulfilment of his own nature, and not by the restraint of his nature, when we recognize that no man, no personal, individual man, is ever to be ransomed from his sins except by having opened to him a larger and fuller life into which he has entered, we seem to have displayed to us a large region, into which we are tempted to enter, and which is so rich and inviting to us that we immediately begin to ask ourselves if it is possible that there should be such a region.  It is simply a great dream that we set before us.  It is something that we imagine, something that comes out of the imaginations and anticipations of our own hearts, simply stimulated by the possibilities of the life in which we are living.  It would be very much indeed, if it were only that.  It would bear a certain testimony of itself, if it simply came out of the perpetual dissatisfaction of men’s souls, even if there were no distinct manifestation of that life and no possibility of entering into it at once with our own personal consecration, with the resolution of our own wills.  But if it were simply a dream, ultimately it must fade away out of the thoughts of men.  It is impossible that men should keep on, year after year, age after age, this simple dream of something which does not exist.  It would be like those pictures which the poet has drawn, something which appeals to nothing in our human nature and stands only as a parable of something that is a great deal lower than itself.  The poet pictures to us in his imagination those things which do not appeal to our life, because they find nothing to correspond to their high portraits, to show those transformations of nature into something that is entirely different and foreign to itself.  If religion be simply the dream that some men hold it to be, if it simply be the cheating of man’s soul with that which has no reality to correspond

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Addresses by the right reverend Phillips Brooks from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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