As 1961 slides into the past and we move forward into 1962, it is well for Christians to compare their hopes and fears with those of that other world force which seeks to gain the souls and hopes of men.

The hopes and fears of both Christianity and communism are tied up with the movements of time and history. Both have a dynamic view of human life; both are historical rather than mystical or intellectual. For each, salvation emerges not by “taking thought” but by historical action; for each, total salvation comes at the end of history—and then history itself ends. This end of history is, again for both, a time when all human fears are dissolved and all human hopes fulfilled.

The passing of 1961 fills neither the true Christian nor the authentic Communist with deep sadness and melancholy, for it is by the passing of time that each is thrust toward his desired destiny. Neither will feel the need of drowning sorrow by such means as are available. Each will let the year go in the joyous belief that his redemption draweth nigh. Neither wish to hold back the clock; neither regard Old Year’s or New Year’s Day as a kind of holy day, a time to build tabernacles, a place to remain. Destiny lies ahead; the best is yet to be.

But right about here comparisons cease and only contrasts remain.

Communism believes that the engine which thrusts history forward to its goal is fueled by the restless, dialectical character of materialism. There is something about materialism which accounts for man’s desire to acquire, for the have-nots’ struggle against those who have. It is even required that it explain the rise of the idea of communism in the mind of Karl Marx! When this forward driving power of materialism achieves its predestined goal, then, ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

Have something to add about this? See something we missed? Share your feedback here.

Our digital archives are a work in progress. Let us know if corrections need to be made.

Tags:
Issue: