Magazine article The Spectator

A Duty Not Always to Be Humble

Magazine article The Spectator

A Duty Not Always to Be Humble

Article excerpt

1888

On Christmas Day, both the sermon at St Paul's - a very able one, preached by the Rev Aubrey Moore - and the sermon at Westminster Abbey, an equally able one, preached by the Dean, dwelt very appropriately on humility as the special lesson of the day. If God humbled himself to raise man, it seems pretty clear that man without humbling himself cannot do the same work; and so at St Paul's and at Westminster Abbey alike, the English people were told that the way to subdue the world is not to play the master, but to play the servant, and to play the servant in all earnestness. Humility is a lesson which Englishmen can never have impressed on them too often, especially those Englishmen who have to administer the affairs of a great Empire; but we are not sure that the great majority of English citizens are not in danger of mistaking the lesson, and thinking that we can only truly serve our fellowmen by resigning as arrogant the attempt to govern them, even where governing them, and governing them strongly, is the only way to serve them. …

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