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Lambeth Committee Report on International Relations (1920), “A social order for which humanity hungers is beyond the reach of merely human expedients. Nothing will establish peace on the earth but a new creation from God in response to repentance and prayer."
The third conviction is, that the ancient faith of the Cross is competent to inspire this new creation; that the principles which must guide the coming change are all implicit in the cycle of Christian truths; and that these truths urgently need to be restudied, for the light they throw on social thought and duty in these difficult times.
The subject of this book is, then, the social inferences to be drawn from the Mysteries of the Christian faith as expressed in the sacramental system of the Church. But these Mysteries are studied, not from the point of view of formal theology, but rather from that of Christian experience. It is a book for very simple people, not conversant with the discussions of the schools, but trained by Mother Church in love, and faith, and will, through her patient reiteration during the changing seasons from Advent to Trinity, of what she holds most essential and most dear.
Even while the book has been on the typewriter, a change has been passing over the spirit of the Churches. Twenty years ago, they were
hesitant and conservative; signs of sympathy with the forces, even then rising, of industrial democracy were few and far between. Christian radicals, never lacking at any moment of religious history, were generally regarded askance, and were certainly not in official favor. All but insensibly, the situation has altered. Today, courageous expressions of scarcely veiled agreement with advanced social views multiply from month to month. Reference need only be made to the stirring Statement of four Roman Catholic Bishops; to the fine “Social Creed of the Churches," issued by the Federal Council which represents United Protestantism in America; to the Report of the Archbishop's Fifth Committee of Enquiry in England; and to the epoch-making Lambeth Reports. Christianity, in Anglo-Saxon countries at least, is placing itself formally and officially, under our eyes, on the side of the New Order.
But Statements, Resolutions, and Reports are useless except as a beginning. The coming change involves a new Christian ethic, in the development of which every member of Christ's Church should share; and the formation of this ethic, in turn, demands a re-examination of the Christian formulæ from the new point of view.
This book, approaching its subject from a special direction, aims to bring out a neglected aspect of the Mind of the Church. Needless to say, it does not therefore discount or discredit the importance of the personal aspect habitually emphasized. In studying the social implications of Christian experience and Christian doctrine, it seeks to supplement the older understanding of the faith by drawing new wealth from an exhaustless store.
Judgment as Future Event
The Millennium the Christian Utopia
The Manger, the Treasure of the Humble
The Epiphany Call to Adventure