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G. K. Chesterton Quotes

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G. K. Chesterton ( 10 of 64 )

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Certain new theologians dispute original sin, which is the only part of Christian theology which can really be proved. Some read more

Certain new theologians dispute original sin, which is the only part of Christian theology which can really be proved. Some followers of the Rev. R. J. Campbell, in their almost too fastidious spirituality, admit divine sinlessness, which they cannnot see even in their dreams. But they essentially deny human sin, which they can see in the street. The strongest saints and the strongest sceptics alike took positive evil as the starting-point of their argument. If it be true (as it certainly is) that a man can feel exquisite happiness in skinning a cat, then the religious philosopher can only draw one of two deductions. He must either deny the existence of God, as all atheists do; or he must deny the present union between God and Man, as all Christians do. The new theologians seem to think it a highly rationalistic solution to deny the cat.

by G. K. Chesterton Found in: Christianity Quotes,
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The coziness between church and state is good for the state and bad for the church.

The coziness between church and state is good for the state and bad for the church.

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Commemoration of Gilbert of Sempringham, Founder of the Gilbertine Order, 1189 I am quite prepared to promise the read more

Commemoration of Gilbert of Sempringham, Founder of the Gilbertine Order, 1189 I am quite prepared to promise the secularists secular education if they on their side will promise not to have moral instruction. Secular education seems to me intellectually clean and comprehensible. Moral instruction seems to me unclean, intolerable; I would destroy it with fire. Teaching the Old Testament by itself means teaching ancient Hebrew ethics, which are simple, barbaric rudimentary, and, to a Christian, unsatisfying. Teaching moral instruction means teaching modern London, Birmingham and Boston ethics, which are not barbaric and rudimentary, but are corrupt, hysterical and crawling with worms, and which are to a Christian, not unsatisfying but detestable. The old Jew who says that you must fight only for your tribe is inadequate; but the modern prig who says you must never fight for anything is substantially and specifically immoral. I know quite well, of course, that the unreligious ethics suggested for modern schools do not verbally assert these things; they only talk about peaceful reform, true Christianity, and the importance of Count Tolstoy. It is all a matter of tone and implication--but then, so is all teaching. Education is implication. It is not the things you say which children respect; when you say things, they very commonly laugh and do the opposite. It is the things you assume that really sink into them. It is the things you forget even to teach that they learn.

by G. K. Chesterton Found in: Christianity Quotes,
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If you want the last word, apologize

If you want the last word, apologize

by G. K. Chesterton Found in: Apologies Quotes,
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Brave men are all vertebrates; they have their softness on the surface and their toughness in the middle.

Brave men are all vertebrates; they have their softness on the surface and their toughness in the middle.

by G. K. Chesterton Found in: Courage Quotes,
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A child kicks its legs rhythmically through excess, not absence, of life. Because children have abounding vitality, because they are read more

A child kicks its legs rhythmically through excess, not absence, of life. Because children have abounding vitality, because they are in spirit fierce and free, therefore they want things repeated and unchanged. They always say, "Do it again"; and the grown-up person does it again until he is nearly dead. For grown-up people are not strong enough to exult in monotony. But perhaps God is strong enough... It is possible that God says every morning, "Do it again," to the sun; and every evening, "Do it again," to the moon. It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike: it may be that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them. It may be that He has the eternal appetite of infancy; for we have sinned and grown old, and our Father is younger than we.

by G. K. Chesterton Found in: Christianity Quotes,
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Feast of Bartholomew the Apostle It is often said with a sneer that the God of Israel was only read more

Feast of Bartholomew the Apostle It is often said with a sneer that the God of Israel was only a God of Battles, "a mere barbaric Lord of Hosts" pitted in rivalry against other gods only as their envious foe. Well it is for the world that He was indeed a God of Battles. Well it is for us that He was to all the rest only a rival and a foe. In the ordinary way, it would have been only too easy for them to have achieved the desolate disaster of conceiving Him as a friend. It would have been only too easy for them to have seen Him stretching out His hands in love and reconciliation, embracing Baal and kissing the painted face of Astarte... It would have been easy enough for His worshipers to follow the enlightened course of Syncretism and the pooling of all the pagan traditions. It is obvious indeed that His followers were always sliding down this easy slope; and it required the almost demoniac energy of certain inspired demagogues, who testified to the divine unity in words that are still like winds of inspiration and ruin, [to stop them]. The more we really understand of the ancient conditions that contributed to the final culture of the Faith, the more we shall have a real and even a realistic reverence for the greatness of the Prophets of Israel. As it was, while the whole world melted into this mass of confused mythology, this Deity who is called tribal and narrow, precisely because He was what is called tribal and narrow, preserved the primary religion of all mankind. He was tribal enough to be universal. He was as narrow as the universe.

by G. K. Chesterton Found in: Christianity Quotes,
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Continuing a series on God and the human condition: That Jones shall worship the "god within him" turns out read more

Continuing a series on God and the human condition: That Jones shall worship the "god within him" turns out ultimately to mean that Jones shall worship Jones. Let Jones worship the sun or moon -- anything rather than the Inner Light; let Jones worship cats or crocodiles, if he can find any in his street, but not the god within. Christianity came into the world firstly in order to assert with violence that a man had not only to look inwards, but to look outwards, to behold with astonishment and enthusiasm a divine company and a divine captain. The only fun of being a Christian was that a man was not left alone with the Inner Light, but definitely recognized an outer light, fair as the sun, clear as the moon, terrible as an army with banners.

by G. K. Chesterton Found in: Christianity Quotes,
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A stiff apology is a second insult... The injured party does not want to be compensated because he has been read more

A stiff apology is a second insult... The injured party does not want to be compensated because he has been wronged; he wants to be healed because he has been hurt.

by G. K. Chesterton Found in: Insults Quotes,
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Destiny is but a phrase of the weak human heart - the dark apology for every error. The strong and read more

Destiny is but a phrase of the weak human heart - the dark apology for every error. The strong and virtuous admit no destiny. On earth conscience guides; in heaven God watches. And destiny is but the phantom we invoke to silence the one and dethrone the other.

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