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him go up to Jerusalem, which is in Judah, and build the house of the Lord God of Israel, (He is the God, which is in Jerusalem” (i. 2, 3). From this and more ample statements in other parts of the Scriptures it has been inferred that Cyrus acknowledged Jehovah as the true God; while the testimony of profane history so far corroborates this opinion as to make him a great Monotheist, in whose conquest of Babylon the knell of Polytheism sounded throughout the world. The recent discovery of a document in the ruins of Babylon sheds a new and less favourable light on this subject. A broken clay cylinder, found in one of the ruins, arrived in England in the course of last autumn, on which had been written, in the cuneiform character, a proclamation of Cyrus. The cylinder is imperfect, but what remains of the inscription has been translated. It is of considerable length, but we only quote the sentences which throw light on the religious character or policy of Cyrus. “ The ancient royal family of which Bel and Nebo had sustained the rule in the goodness of their hearts faded away when I entered victoriously into Dintir. With joy and gladness in the royal palace I established my seat of sovereignty. Merodach, the great lord, and the ancient guardian of the sons of Dintir, and To the work of repairing the shrines of Merodach, the great lord, I addressed myself. To me (Cyrus the king), and to Cambyses, my son, the offspring of my heart, and to my faithful army, (the God] auspiciously granted His favour, so that we succeeded in restoring the shrine to its former perfect state. The gods who dwelt among them to their places I restored, and I assigned them a permanent habitation. All their people I assembled, and I increased their property; and the gods of Sumir and Akkad, whom Nabonidus had introduced at the festivals (or processions) of the Lord, I assigned them an honourable seat in their sanctuaries, as was enjoyed by all the other gods in their own cities. And daily I prayed to Bel and Nebo, that they would lengthen my days and increase my good fortune, and would repeat to Merodach, my Lord, that Thy worshipper, Cyrus the king, and his son Cambyses.
It is the opinion of Canon Rawlinson, from whose article in the Contemporary we quote, that Cyrus can no longer sustain the character which has been given him of a Monotheist and an Iconoclast; since he not only set up the gods of the Babylonians, and repaired the shrine of Merodach, but himself daily prayed to Bel and Nebo. Those who desire to see the question discussed at length, and the testimony of the recently discovered proclamation compared, and endeavoured to be reconciled with what is predicted and recorded of him in the Bible, can refer to the article itself. The case, we think, strengthens the New Church view respecting those who were types of the Lord Jesus, that they needed not to be personally but only functionally suitable for the purpose.
We have received the December number of Arthur's (American) Home Magazine. It said to be one of the most attractive issues of the year, but the January number is promised to be exceptionally rich
in every department. It is, besides, to be enlarged and reduced in price. The staple matter consists of stories, mostly by female writers. There is a short sketch of Peter the Great, with portrait, and a description of the Turkish town of Sivas with illustration. An article on Kent, the garden of England, being No. 6 of Our Travelling Club, gives a very interesting description of its natural beauties, its cultivated fields, and hop-gardens. “The ridges are covered with dark Scotch firs and close thickets of spruce, and every rock has its thickly-grown copse. Every seven years there is a cutting of wattles, hurdles, and hop-poles. The next year'a flush of primroses covers the ground,' and the banks of wild flowers, the dainty bluebells, and the windswept anemones and wild daffodils make an English spring in Kent so beautiful, that even its remembrance is a joy for ever.' The great beeches, purple in the shadows of twilight, and golden-bronze in an autumn noonday, grow to magnificent size here, as do also the elms, while the oaks stretch their huge branches far across the hedgerows, throwing broad shadows over green pastures and sloping hillsides.” Besides the stories and sketches there is a variety of other matter : Boys' and Girls' Treasury; Evenings with the Poets; Housekeepers' Department; Fashion Department, with a profusion of illustrations,
There is one item that will afford a few crumbs of comfort to "the angel of the house” in our native homes, whose gentle spirit is sometimes vexed by the same cause. It is entitled “The Servant Question." Great annoyance and discomfort in American families are caused by the incompetence and bad discipline of servant-girls. These have driven some of the prominent housekeepers of Chicago to attempt some reform. Among the reforms contemplated are--service to be paid according to efficiency and skill; payment by the month instead of the week, and each party to give the other at least a week's warning in case of a desired change; the vicious and dangerous practice to be put down of furnishing servants with night-keys, and the maids to be housed and in bed at reasonable hours. One other item of a different and more pleasing kind we quote. Mrs. Lydia Maria Child (author of the “Mother's Book” and other works) lives in a quiet home in Wayland, Massachusetts. The house is an old one of only a story and a half, and of Quaker simplicity. She is now in her seventy-eighth year. The Home Magazine can be ordered through Mr. Speirs.
Gleanings. Is not money what we make it? Dust in the miser's chests; canker in the proud man's heart; but golden sunbeams, streams of blessing earned by a child's labour, and comforting a parent's heart, or lovingly passed from the rich man's hands into the poor man's homes.
destruction of the weakest.' This ETHICS.
struggle may be traced in the evolution Under the title of the “ Data of of conduct up the scale of increasingly Ethics.” Mr. Herbert Spencer has pub. complex organism, with evidence of lished a treatise, which may be regarded steadily increasing violence on the one as the crowning effort of a long preli- hand and laceration on the other. minary course of labour. The appear. Growing strength, with more powerful ance of the work has been hastened by weapons of offence, may present evolu. the author's fear that, through failing tion of conduct, appearing at length in health, the final work of the series on fiercest encounters. But such evolution which he has been so long engaged is not in the direction of morality, nor might remain unexecuted. Professor is it any help towards the evolution of Calderwood has made this work the thought bearing on higher conduct. subject of a critique in the pages of the Nothing can conceal-or even mateContemporary Review, dwelling at the rially obscure-the vastness of the consame time on the general question of trast involved when we pass from such moral conduct.
conflict to actions which come within The philosophy of existence main- the ethical region. We are introduced tained by Mr. Spencer is that of evolu. into a new sphere; as Mr. Spencer has tion from lower to higher forms.' This said, it is introduction by antithesis.' doctrine he seeks to carry from the But antithesis is not to be found in physical creation and sociological ar- evolution of structure and function rangements to the region of moral con- and action. The evolution which leads duct. This is the goal of his philoso- to increased power of attack does not at phical inquiries and literary labours ; the same time lead to restraint upon the
' either,” says Professor Calder. disposition to be violent. It cannot warwood, “the ethical theory must be a rantably be said that 'this imperfectly manifest outgrowth of the evolution evolved conduct introduces us theory—a crowning feature in it-or conduct that is perfectly evolved.'” that theory itself must be abandoned as Morals, according to Swedenborg, are insufficient to meet the difficulties con either natural or spiritual. The natural nected with the higher order of activity. man, from merely natural motives, can Accordingly Herbert Spencer defines do good and find pleasure in it. Inethics in the following terms: ‘Ethics has teriorly in this good is the love of himfor its subject-matter that form which self and the hope of his own selfish or universal conduct assumes during the worldly advantage. The spiritual man last stages of its evolution.'
does good, which is similar in external The relation of morals to religion is appearance, but different in interior so intimate and vital that nothing which quality, because proceeding from difaffects moral conduct can be matter of ferent motives, and aiming, at higher indifference to the religious student. ends. The motives of the spiritual man Religion itself has been defined as have regard to the good of others, and “spiritual morality;" and every effort his delight is to fulfil the royal law of to shed light on the data of ethics must love by ministering to the wellbeing of of necessity have a special interest for his fellow-creatures. His aim, there. the religious inquirer. The theory pro- fore, is not personal happiness, although posed by Mr. Spencer does not solve the this also is a common result of right problem. “The struggle for exist- conduct. His aim is to do good to ence'--the well-known auxiliary of the others because it is agreeable to the will evolutionist-proves a souree of great of God, and therefore in itself intrinsi. perplexity, as he seeks to become a cally right. This discrimination is remoralist, vindicating evolution cognised by Professor Calderwood, theory as adequate to explain ethical though not in the form in which it is actions. The struggle for existence! here stated. Mr. Spencer, in dealing has as its consequent survival of the with the upholders of an absolute fittest," and that as its concomitant morality, says : “ The moralist who
thinks this conduct intrinsically good, hearts of men the old moral basis of and that intrinsically bad, if pushed national and individual life. New home has no choice but to fall back on doctrines were abroad which did not their pleasure-giving and pain-giving seem to be coined in the interests of effects. To prove this it needs but to morality. Take the new political observe how impossible it would be to doctrine, for instance, accepted in high think of them as we do if their effects places, that a nation had no morality; were reversed.
Suppose that gashes was that compatible with high national and bruises caused agreeable sensations, aims ? Read Mr. Herbert Spencer on and brought in their train increased what were called the morals of trade, power of doing work and receiving en- and see what it came to. Trade had no joyment, should we regard assault in morality; it was simply to buy in the the same
as at present ?.” cheapest and sell in the dearest When,” says Professor Calderwood, markets, and everything would be regu“murder turns out to be something else lated by the simple law of supply than killing, and falsehood something and demand. Most people were beelse than deception, we shall have to ginning to feel that the controversy of adjust our vocabulary to the unexpected the age was going to be a battle of first change ; but we shall not thereby show principles, and those first principles that pleasure-giving or pain-giving effe were as stern in their alternity as that alone decide moral distinctions, and it contest of old between Elijah and the will remain true as at present that in. prophets of Baal, and ten thousand fliction of injury and deception of others times more fatal than that of Athanasius are actions intrinsically wrong, whether against the world. Yet most of us went the pain consequent upon them be great dreaming along with our heads and or small. .
We admit that the two hearts full of our petty plans and sordid actions described under the names aims, laying out our lines of business or
murder' and 'deceit' could not be in- our pleasure, according to the paramount terpreted without reference to their con- attractions of each of us, for to-day, or sequences, for both are actions done to to-morrow, or the day after, never others. Nevertheless the measure of pausing or caring to think whither the consequences is not the measure of things are drifting, or whither we ourour thoughts. It is this fact which Mr. selves are being borne. He was perfectly Spencer has not faced, and which is sick of the aimless remedies which were essential to the discussion. So far is suggested almost on every hand by an our mode of thinking from being deter- optimistical fatalism for the purpose of mined by the consequences that follow, alleviating national disasters and althat two men might lose their lives by most national ruin. Things must get the hands of two of their fellows in right, people said. Why must they ? exactly the same manner, and we should Things had no tendency of themselves call the one a case of murder, and the to get right. We were placed in the other a case of accidental death. Thus world for the purpose of putting things it appears that we think as we do, not right if they got wrong, and of keeping merely by reference to consequences, them right after they had got right. but also to the intention of the agent He admired the protest with which the and a rational law of self-direction. . Manchester Chamber of Commerce had To ignore this is merely to shut our sprung forward to the rescue and said, eyes to facts and attempt explanations There was no fraud in selling sized cloth.' while looking only at a part of the thing Who ever said there was ? If a buyer to be explained.”
of sized cloth knew that it was sized, and bought it as such, the Manchester
Chamber of Commerce was perfectly PRACTICAL CHRISTIANITY.
right. If there was a demand for sized The Bishop of Manchester, who is dis- goods let the world have them. There tinguished for his broad and catholic could be no fraud between the Lancateaching respecting the Christian life, shire producer and the Bombay merin a sermon at Eccles, near Manchester, chant. But was there no fraud between from the text Matt. iii. 1, said : “W the Lancashire producer and those long need to-day some such voice as that of series of transactions which conveyed John the Baptist to re-vindicate in the that piece of sized cloth from the Man
chester warehouses to the homes of the the Lord Jesus Christ came to redeem poor? The two pieces lying upon the the world from all iniquity, to teach counter could be discriminated, but them and him that they were, if they when the poor cultivator of the soil were to be His peculiar people, to be made his purchase he had not the two zealous of good works, to live soberly, pieces before him. Some reels of cot. godly, and righteously in this present ton had marks on them representing world, then he ventured to say that that they contained 250 yards, but that every word he had spoken to them had was a mere conventional phrase between been of the very essence of Christianity, manufacturer and tradesman, and they that all those things had to do with were never supposed to contain more Christ's Gospel, and that Christ's Gosthan 175 yards. But the poor seam- pel had to do with every one of those stress had a right to say, 'A fraud has things." been committed upon me,' if the cotton did not measure 250 yards. There was
NEW ZEALAND. no use in disguising these things. When things got into a wrong groove,
and The Rev. S. Edger continues his when radically unsound principles were labours in this colony, and the members recognised as bases of action, either in of his congregation continue the inser: politics or trade, or when the tone of tion of his discourses in the Auckland society became palpably deteriorated, Evening Star, for which they seem to less high-minded, more selfish, less pay as for advertisements. In this pure, then things did not right them- manner the press as well as the voice selves. Their tendency, if left to them. are employed in the dissemination of selves, was to go from bad to worse. the truth. The discourses published They that could not discern the signs of are headed “E. Swedenborg on
the the times, though they were so plain several subjects discussed. There is no that even
a little child might read concealment, therefore, of the author's them, slept on as the careless virgins name. The lecture given on Sunday with their untrimmed lamps slept on in evening, August 10th, is on “ The Lord the fool's paradise in which they de- Jesus Christ, the Divine Redeemer.” lighted to dwell, which supplied the Mr. Edger opens his discourse by the pleasant but delusive images of their statement : *There are three theories dreams. But let them take heed, for possible to be held ; with what degree sometimes disasters came at once, in the of consistency we have now to consider : twinkling of an eye, in a moment, as there is the humanitarian or man theory, the disaster came upon Babylon in the the Divine or God theory, and the interdays of old. Let them take heed lest, mediate theory, which regards Christ in the midst of their security, some neither as man nor God, but as an such catastrophe befell them as that intermediate being, the highest of all which, in the midst of the fury and created beings, or the first emanation wildness of the storm, plunged that ill. from the Supreme. fated mail train, last Sunday evening, After discussing these theories, and while they were in their churches, say- presenting a clear exposition of the ing or professing to say their prayers, Deity of the Saviour, Mr. Edger prointo the depths of the pitiless sea. ceeds to the subject of redemption. We •What has all this to do with Christian- give his remarks on the necessity of ity?', perhaps some of them would redemption have been saying in their minds while “ To Swedenborg evil as sin, involving he had been preaching. If they ruin, is of stupendous magnitude. thought Christianity was merely a bun. know of no one who has said so much dle of formulated, theological dogmas, to drag men out of all moral indifference. of which they were to believe as many Here again all is real. Sin is a positive, as they could, but which were to have deadly plague of the soul-not a fanciful no conceivable relation to human life imputation ; hell is a deep reality-only and human conduct, then he admitted men cast themselves, God does not cast that not one single word that he had them, into it. In like manner de. said that morning had anything to do liverance from it is real-not another with that type of Christianity ; but, on fanciful imputation. Sin is subdued the other hand, if they believed that by a greater power, cast clean out of a