Chapter Twelve - Red
|SUPPOSE we have two men before us. The one has been reared in a Puritan
home. He has learned to love the Bible and is familiar with its teachings.
He believes he is under obligation to God as his Creator; he also feels
himself a debtor to all his fellow men, for they too were made by the same
Creator. As Christ has pardoned his sins and given him the promise of immortal
life, he feels under everlasting obligation so to live that he may help
proclaim this blessed gospel to all with whom he may associate.
The other man has been trained from childhood to regard the Bible as a collection of myths and legends, representing the religious life of an ancient Oriental people who considered themselves as the special favorites of Heaven. He believes that man in his long evolution from brute ancestors has been groping after the dim Unknown with great persistence; but he is not sure that this groping has accomplished anything worth while. He intends to make the most he can out of this life; for he expects to be a long time dead. Darwinism may not be the whole truth about the bloody path by which man has climbed up into his present position; but he believes every man has to look out for himself.
||The first man believes that his Creator has given definite commands
regarding the sacredness of human life and even the sacredness of property
rights; he constantly feels, "Thou God seest me"; and when confronted with
a temptation to take the property or the life of another, he instinctively
exclaims, "How can I do this great wickedness and sin against God!"
The other man believes that all our ideas of morality are mere conventions, customs that the developing human animal has found most convenient for living together in communities or society; but there is no such thing as inherent property rights; it is just a notion that has come down to us from the time when those who had were trying to invent some idea to prevent others from taking it away from them. He believes in the ethics of —
"Those should get who have the power,
And when confronted with an opportunity to get something claimed by someone else, his chief concern is, "I wonder if any one is likely to see me do it."
Civilization not a Cause, but a Consequence
Now suppose you had a million dollars in gold and negotiable securities which you had to take in an automobile down a long, lonely road on a dark night, and you had to take one of these two men to sit in the back seat with an automatic revolver. How long would it take for you to decide which man it would be?
This million dollars in gold and securities represents the treasures of culture and civilization that have been intrusted to us. Is it safe for us to intrust these treasures to the tender mercies of men who have lost all sense of inherent moral obligations, and who think that our system of morality is only what the developing anthropoids have agreed upon as the best arrangement for the smooth running of society?
Many are the voices today that are lamenting the breaking up of civilization. But the trouble lies deeper than most people think. We might manage to get along without victrolas, the radio, or even without the movies. But civilization is not a cause, but a consequence. It does not produce an orderly, moral state of society and high religious principles; it is itself produced by religion and morality. Religious convictions produce morality, and a combination of these two produces civilization. But this order cannot be reversed, for a paganized civilization, with morality reduced to merely the conventions that a crowd of evolving ape-men have agreed upon for the rules of society, has nothing to hold it together. No form of civilization can long withstand the break-up of the family and the loss of the sacred-ness of human life and of the rights of private property, which an evolutionary system of sociology has been industriously seeking to promote for the past two or three decades.
Evolution and Socialism One
||The fact is, Marxian Socialism and the radical criticism of the Bible, though arising first in point of time, are now proceeding hand in hand with the doctrine of organic evolution to break down all those ideas of morality, all those concepts of the sacred-ness of marriage and of private property, upon which Occidental civilization has been built during the past thousand years. Anglo-Saxon freedom and those orderly arrangements of society that we commonly term democracy and Western civilization are doomed, unless we return to those primal ideas of God as our Creator and the Bible as His sacred revelation to mankind. Some years ago, Bouck White, then pastor of the "Church of the Social Revolution," New York City, gave out an interview which seems very enlightening. He said that he was a graduate of Union Theological Seminary, and wished to make an appeal to his "red-flag comrades" to recognize the teachers of the radical criticism of the Bible as their most efficient helpers and promoters, in seeking to bring about the Social Revolution. Said he:|
"Christendom reposes upon a book, the Bible. So long as that Bible was supposed to teach peace and quietness, Christendom had peace and quietness. But now comes Biblical scholarship, and shows by cool, masterly science that the Bible is one long cry for human rights, against the arrogance of the moneyed mighty. Professors ———, and ————, and ————, and ———, at Union,— yes, and President ——— himself — are deserving of a place alongside of Karl Marx; for in their discoveries as to the real, the social meanings of the Biblical writings, they are planting mines of social dynamite underneath this civilization of massive property rights, to blow up the whole apparatus."
It is no effective way to meet the present situation, for us to keep cracking jokes at the Bolshevists and the radicals, occasionally jailing a few of the more noisy ones. Just at present radicalism is not popular in America. But Marxian Socialism and the dictatorship of the proletariat are merely the economic aspects of the doctrine of organic evolution; and just so long as the latter is taught from the kindergarten to the university, a revival of the active propaganda for the Social Revolution is as inevitable here in America as is tomorrow's sunrise.
When this agitation does again break loose, where are the arguments
to answer it, if a generation has grown up who implicitly believe in the
doctrine of the animal origin of man, upon which all radical propaganda
|What more can I say here? I have already written quite fully on this
subject in my "Poisoning Democracy." But I wish that somebody or
something could make the people of America see what a viper they are holding
to their bosom, when the children in the schools, as well as the university
students, are being taught doctrines regarding the origin of man's body,
and regarding the origin of the family and of social customs, that are
making the rising generation a helpless prey to the radical agitators of
Rome was a long while in dying, because her people had once been clean and free. The Anglo-Saxon peoples have for centuries been the most orderly, the most law-respecting people on earth; and nothing but a radical undermining of the basic principles of their family life and their morality could ever induce them to wreck that long growth of the centuries that we call democracy and the sacredness of individual liberty.
"But come it will, the day decreed by Fates;
While stands the belief in, the Bible as God's revelation, America shall stand; but when this belief in the Bible falls, America will fall; and when America falls, the world!
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