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respect them. It fears their competition on equal levels, and wishes to keep them confined, not within walls, as in the Mohammedan regions, but behind the more subtle barriers of opinion, prejudice, and supposed feminine aptitudes. True manliness holds out the hand to woman, and says, “Do whatever you are able to do; whatever God meant you to do. Neither you nor I can tell what that is till all artificial barriers are removed, and you have full opportunity to try.” Manly strength respects womanly purity, sympathy, and grace of heart. And this is the real chivalry of the present hour.
Finally, true manliness draws its strength from religion. It looks up to whatever things are good, true, and excellent. It reverences the divine element in all earthly phenomena. Seeing an infinite grandeur manifested in the lowest and most minute works of the creative power, it reverences God as the all in all. False manliness imagines that it shows its superiority by irreverence, by turning sacred things into jest; by looking with contempt on the great faiths of mankind. But unless we have faith in something above ourselves, our strength goes out of us.
Doubt and unbelief may be sometimes unavoidable, may not be in any sense blamable, but they always take away our strength. Our power comes from a boundless faith and hope ; from a conviction that amid these changes of time there is something unchangeable and eternal. Sur
rounded by death and decay, we need to rely on the incorruptible and immortal essences of being. Reverence for a divine presence in the soul and in nature is the support of true manliness. According to Paul, Jesus is the example of a perfect man. Paul knew what manliness was; his own life was a long battle, a knightly conflict, full of courage, endurance, independence, freedom, devotion to all things good. No opposition could daunt him, no power turn him from his chosen path. But when he wrote from his prison to the Ephesians, instead of boasting of his own achievements, he puts himself by the side of his readers as one who is still endeavoring to grow up into the perfect manliness of Christ.
Jesus was the perfect man because always drawing power from on high, and devoting that power to the good of his fellow-men. The harmony of his soul was so entire, that separate qualities are scarcely
We do not often speak of Jesus as a philanthropist, a reformer, a thinker, a prophet, a saint; but rather as the balanced fulness of all human powers; never hurrying, never resting ; always about his Father's business, friendly with the lowliest, one to whom all men were equally dear. We do not think of making any analysis of his character. It is the unity and harmony of all traits which impress us. It is this which constitutes his great influence, that he was always one with God and one with man.
We therefore find Jesus to be both master and brother, teacher and friend, because when in communion with his spirit we also grow up in all things into a truer manliness. It is a great blessing to have such a friend, whom not having seen we yet can love ; in whom, though now we see him not, yet believing, we can rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory.