I regard it as a high privilege to be associated with this volume. Many who know and value Mr Glover's work on The Conflict of Religions in the Early Roman Empire must have wistfully desired to secure from his graphic pen just such a book as is here given to the world. He possesses the rare power of reverently handling familiar truths or facts in such manner as to make them seem to be almost new. There are few gifts more precious than this at a time when our familiarity with the greatest and most sacred of all narratives is a chief hindrance to our ready appreciation of its living power. I believe that no one will read Mr Glover's chapters, and especially his description of the parable-teaching given by our Lord, without a sense of having been introduced to a whole series of fresh and fruitful thoughts. He has expanded for us, with the force, the clearness, and the power of vivid illustration which we have learned to expect from him, the meaning of a sentence in the earlier volume I have alluded to, where he insists that, "Jesus of Nazareth does stand in the centre of human history, that He has brought God and man into a new relation, that He is the present concern of every one of us and that there is more in Him than we have yet accounted for."
In accordance with its title, the single theme of the book is "The Jesus of History," but the student or exponent of dogmatic theology will find abundant material in its pages.
I commend it confidently, both to single students and to those who nowadays, in happily increasing numbers, meet together for common study; and I congratulate those who belong to the Student Christian Movement upon this notable addition to the books published in connection with their far-reaching work.
Advent Sunday, 1916
This book has grown out of lectures upon the historical Jesus given in a good many cities of India during the winter 1915-16. Recast and developed, the lectures were taken down in shorthand in Calcutta; they were revised in Madras; and most of them were wholly re-written, where and when in six following months leisure was available, in places so far apart as Colombo, Maymyo, Rangoon, Kodaikanal, Simla, and Poona. The reader will not expect a heavy apparatus of references to books which were generally out of reach.
Here and there are incorporated passages (rehandled) from articles that have appeared in The Constructive Quarterly, The Nation, The Expositor, and elsewhere.
Those who themselves have tried to draw the likeness attempted in this book will best understand, and perhaps most readily forgive, failures and mistakes, or even worse, in my drawing. The aim of the book, as of the lectures, is, after all, not to achieve a final presentment of the historical Jesus, but to suggest lines of study that will deepen our interest in him and our love of him.
T. R. G.
POONA, August 1916
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