DR. ELMSLIE AND SOCIALIST.
TO THE EDITOR. Sir, —"Socialist" has evidently misunderstood the meaning of one sentence in my letter ; and as. J^3m.jlesu:ojiS„of. removing a wrong impression from his mind, I must trouble .you again. ' His statement that Dr. Enislie said the preaching of the Gospel would not bring in the millennium during the Gentile age is quite correct. Unfortunately he has taken the fourth sentence of the secondparagraph of my letter as a contradiction of this statement. Nothing was farther from my intention. That sentence rightly read, expresses the doctor's claim that Christianity, wherever honestly received, would .reach men's hearts, and revolutionize then* characters, but not bring in the millennium, because of its reception by the comparative few only. If "Socialist" was present at the morning service, he will doubtless remember how forcibly it was pointed out that at present there was not any such thing as a Christian nation, or even a Christian community in the correct sense of the term. And though," in spite of listening attentively, "Socialist" did not hear anything about.the weak points of Temperance Societies , and Trade's Unions,' I maintain that the Doctor -did emphatically and forcibly point out that the weakness of these organisations lay in their utter inability, to reach men's hearts and overcome the evil: therein, and that he dwelt on this "at some length. I take this opportunity of saying that "Socialist" appears to have rather misunderstood the motive of my reply to his first letter. It was- not -written 'in defence of Dr. Elmslie's views. Hedoes not need my help. 'But, to my mind, " Socialist" put a very wrong construction on the sermon, and it was my .desire- to ■,correct this',. and state what was actually said. It must now be left to other hearers to say which of us is right, and should this, eventually prove' me to be in the wrong, I shall be more careful on another occasion to assure myself, of having rightly heard and understood what was said before running into print. In his second letter "Socialist" has somewhat shifted Ijis position. He would now discuss with me' what should be the. attitude ~of Christianity > towards .human organisations for tlie "ihiprovemeht ~of man's condition. This I must decline. •I should,first want to know what may be hs attitude towards Christianity, and in' the second place I do not consider tho columns of a newspaper the best place for such a discussion. I am, etc., J [This subject has now been quite sufficiently ventilated, and there is nothing to be gained by pursuing it further.— Ed.]
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DR. ELMSLIE AND SOCIALIST., Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2434, 20 May 1890
DR. ELMSLIE AND SOCIALIST. Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2434, 20 May 1890
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