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the belief of the writer that no greater havoc is being wrought anywhere in the realm of religious aspiration than is being done to-day among professing church-members, sane, perchance—who once knew the secrets of saving faith. To this class there seems to be two horns in the dilemma of abduction. As an eminent author says: "If we give the preponderant attention to the providences which appertain to the body, there is danger of becoming deistical and materialistic in our views. If we study the word alone, without due appreciation of the Spirit and providence, there is danger of drifting away into dead formality, drying up, becoming creedistic, theoretical, and unspiritual.”

What can check the materialistic trend of the times ? What can save the Church from reflex influ. ences of modern materialism? Somehow, we have reached the place where things must appeal to the senses: we must taste, handle, smell, see, etc.; things in the Church, as well as out, have jostled down to a metallic basis : something for so much. In the same degree, deny it as we will, our religion ceases to be a religion of faith. Then, on the other hand, the history of Christendom from the beginning, without an exception, proves the second horn to the dilemma: as we lose the spiritual afflatus, we become ceremonial. Upon this reef of rocks our Church is crashing to-day. We see only the material ; we have a mania for statistics, figures. Our Sunday-schools seek organization, grades, banners, honour rolls, numbers. Great schools are pushed with enthusiasm by unconverted officers and teachers. About ninety

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per cent. swarm out and away from the Church and rarely if ever remain for the preaching of the Word. In fearful, glaring reality we can see in all this ceremonialism and dress parade Demoniacal Abduction.

The third class is much smaller; they are the select few who live in the inner circle of things. Having been brought from darkness unto light they seek to walk in all the light, and to live continually in the good, acceptable, and perfect will of God. This class are the sworn, uncompromising enemies of Satan's kingdom; but often their zeal is without knowledge. Perchance, many are weak and unlearned. Satan will leave the multitude of mystery workers and formalists to make havoc among these saintly ones. All that he accomplishes here cuts like a two-edged sword: the individual ruin, and the deadening, paralyzing influence to the cause of truth. By what method does he gain access ? Abduction is only possible here where preponderant emphasis is placed on the leadership of the Spirit without careful, diligent adhesion to the Word. The Word is the Spirit's weapon; without it he is handicapped. What is the result ? Fanaticism, dreams, visions, wild-fire, extreme positions on dress, food, domestic relations, etc., until they are “ led away by a demon beyond recall.” Shipwrecked, “ affinities,” free love, infidelity, are inevitable. Wherever societies, communities, or churches become inoculated with the virus of any of these phases of fanaticism-untold harm surely follows. The Devil is responsible for the religious “craze," and will then exaggerate by lies and misrepresentation before the unbelievers.

The fourth class are, of all, the most to be pitied, and no work of the “angel of the pit" is so hellish as his operation and strategy upon an awakened soul. Those who are in religious work are grieved

. continually at seeing the process chilled and defeated at a point which would soon result in deliverance from the bondage of evil. Satan actually assumes the person of the Holy Ghost. Strange and amazing as this sounds, it is nevertheless true. As soon as the soul is awakened he assumes a general godfather sort of relation to the penitent one. Advice and suggestions flood his mind : his pride, clothes, reputation, business, and all are used as arguments. " You should be a Christian—join the church—it is your duty; but when you make a start, be sure you have a genuine experience. You are conscientious— anything but a hypocrite with you. Now this is not an opportune time, etc., etc.," on and on, until the penitent refuses to arise and go to his Father's house. Procrastination; Satan literally drags him away from the mercy seat.

How can he do this? Where is the Holy Ghost all this time? Why does He not protect His identity ? So long as a man is in sin he has a nature that is not subject to the law of God, and cannot be: carnal mind, old man. On this territory Satan has right of way; under the guise of one seeking to help them in their confusion and sorrow, he manipulates until prevenient grace is grieved away. The poor deluded soul has been “ led away by a demon." It is Devil Abduction.

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XXX

THE RATIONALE OF SUICIDE

“ And he cast down the pieces of silver in the temple, and went and hanged himself.”Matthew xxvii. 5.

“He drew out his sword, and would have killed himself, supposing that the prisoners had been fled."-Acts xvi. 27.

The Devil was a murderer from the beginning of human history; his first bloodshed was fratricidegrowing out of religious jealousy. He is the father of murder and murderers. This crime, provoked or unprovoked, is monstrous; the passions that incite it were born in the pit. Then what may be said of self-murder: suicide? It is the most fearful, unnatural, abnormal of all forms of demise. Every impulse of reason and judgment revolts at the thought. The Master Himself drew back from death; the Book says death is an enemy.

Various and satisfactory explanations always follow the news of suicide, “ financial reverses," « ill health," "public exposure," "domestic troubles," “melancholia,” etc., etc. These explanations will not stand under the light of close scrutiny ; reverses and misfortunes are generally contributing causes, but not sufficient to answer fully the horrors of suicide.

We hesitate to discuss this gruesome subject, but the character study of these pages would not be complete without it. We speak not with any degree of dogmatism or claim of superior insight to hidden truth, but in the fear of God we are persuaded that not a single case of suicide, since the race took up its painful march, came about from natural causes. Satan, the embodiment of monstrosities, is responsible.

Suicide is numbered among our vexing problems; reckoned on the basis of population, suicide has increased one hundred and fifty per cent. in two decades. Scientists are tremendously interested; thoughtful people are alarmed. Psychological and sociological authorities tell us that poverty, disappointed affection, and dissipation are the chief causes. The problem can never be solved by social and scientific speculation. We must cross over the borderland into the supernatural before all the angles of the problem are met and satisfied.

There is some strange history connected with suicide. Greek philosophers wrote about it; whether among heathen or civilized peoples, it was considered a disgrace. The Greeks buried them at nighton the public highways, and without religious ceremonies; and their goods were confiscated for the Crown.

We wish to emphasize a former statement: suicide is unnatural; it sets aside her first law. The law of self-preservation holds good in every walk of life; when we cease to love life, the deepest principle of our being is out of balance. The body is holy, and when it is destroyed, the highest felo de se is conmitted; not only so, it is assuming the prerogative which belongs alone to God." It is appointed unto

“ man once to die.” Life is a sacred gift.

There are two kinds of suicide : the responsible and

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