“Is God In It?” The American Sentinel 7, 38, p. 300.

UNDER the heading, “Exposition Poetry,” the Christian Cynosure has the following:—

The closing stanzas of Prof. John K. Paine’s “Columbian March and Chorus,” to be performed at the dedication of the Exposition buildings at Jackson Park, next month, is as follows:—

All hail and welcome nations of the earth!

Columbia’s greeting comes from every State.

Proclaim to all mankind the world’s new birth

Of freedom, age on age shall consecrate.

Let war and enmity forever cease,

Let glorious art and commerce banish wrong.

The universal brotherhood of peace

Shall Columbia’s high, inspiring song.

What we would like to know, Is God in it? If not, we prefer the older couplet,—

Praise God from who all blessings flow:

Praise him, all creature here below.

Really, we would like to know what is meant by “the world’s new birth of freedom,” and what is the use of trying to unite all nations in “the brotherhood of peace” without the aid of Christianity? Will some one, not a pagan, tell us.

It is not our purpose to explain the meaning of the expression, “The world’s new birth.” Mr. Paine could probably do that better than any one else. Neither do we purpose answering any question; but rather to ask one. The Cynosure implies that God is not in the “Columbian March and Chorus;” would he be in it any more if it contained the couplet:—

Praise God from who all blessings flow:

Praise him, all creature here below.

To be more explicit would a formal recognition of God by a godless poet and a godless choir be pleasing to the Creator? Must not all acceptable service be inspired by faith? Is it not still true as it was eighteen hundred years ago that “he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seed him”? Would God be in the familiar words,—

Praise God from whom all blessings flow, if they did not come welling up from hearts full of praise to him, any more than he was in the same words sung by the thoughtless reporters when Congress adjourned?—Certainly not. Then why does the Cynosure insist upon hypocrisy? [300]

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