Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 37.djvu/242

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startling, but hoping that, at the least, a marginal rendering would indicate the literal alternative, or a glossarial note define the Greek expression in a way that would go far to correct the English one. But the revision flows on, making a ripple of change in almost every verse, yet with not a sign of perturbation over this sunken rock. Neither a light-ship nor a buoy warns of a spot where there has been shipwreck before now.

We understand, however, that it was the subject of discussion among the revisers, and that the matter was finally passed by, not because the present rendering was satisfactory, but because no one equivalent English word could be found comprehensive enough for the purpose. What, then, has been so long lost in the Old Version, remains unrecovered in the New, because of a reluctance to employ a paraphrase! The poverty of our language, in this respect, is to keep us poor. Or, it may be, something else was at the bottom of it, symptoms of which are apparent in other instances. It may have been the reluctance of that kind of conservatism which prefers not to disturb traditional notions or long-established formularies. We comfort ourselves, however, with the thought that the New Version is not a finality, but only tentative to that which shall yet meet the brave demand of the nineteenth century. What we have is a bold and noble move, but the whole of English Christendom are in council over it now, and suggestions and. criticisms will flow in for some years to come; changes of view will also take place, making the way clearer and easier to a more fearless and absolute transfer of the original into our native tongue.

It were a bold word from any but a Divine mouth—we should say—and yet the human tongue has been uttering it, virtually, all along in another sphere. What has been the proclamation of science in its own material world, but "Metanoeite? Change your mind from the near testimony of Sense to the distant witness of Discovery"? Sense says: The sun rises in the east and revolves about the earth; the earth is the center of the celestial sphere. But Science—knowledge—proclaims a contradiction, and, with it, a revolution. It is the earth that goes round the sun, the sun is but one of that starry host, the blue firmament melts into illimitable space; it is an illuminated universe which lies out there, in which this apparently ponderous globe floats like an atom in a sunbeam. So Science, an echo of the divine voice, has enlarged, reversed the whole consciousness of man. Her metanoia has been proclaimed, not only here, but everywhere in her material field. Whithersoever she has gone, Nature has inverted its apparent order, its phenomena have widened out into once occult principles, and the first human impression of them has had to be revoked.

We can now imagine how, under such a conception, the pulpit would awake to the grandeur of its work, how the Church would awake to the grandeur of her cause. The themes of the one, the methods of the other, would move with splendor and with power to one definite and mighty end—the summoning of mankind to the metanoia, this new mind, and the announcement of everything on the divine side of life, which would inspire and create it. For we are just on the verge of a great epoch. All this intellectual activity in the material world is surely working toward a moment of reaction when the same intensity of movement will turn the other way, and the universal demand will be for a knowledge of the spiritual. The voice of Science, crying in its wilderness, will be found to have been preparing the way to this. It will turn out to be the "expectation" of this age. Out of its dust and ashes shall mount again the cry: "Metanoeite! for the kingdom of heaven is at hand! n Let us see to it that neither the Bible, the Church, nor the pulpit, gives then an uncertain sound.