[To the Editor of THE SPECTATOR.] Sta,—That Great Britain is
per se a Christian nation is a persistent delusion which is at the bottom of all the muddled thinking on the subject of what a Christian's duty is towards this country going to war, or preparing for the possibility of -one arising.
True, the trend of legislation has been_progressively leavened by Christian teaching, but this apart, it has, in common with every other Power, exercised its authority on the -prevailing principles of worldly wisdom. Mohammedans are governed as Mohammedans ; Hindus as Hindus ; devil worshippers as devil worshippers, the only requisite demanded from all by the governing Power being obedience to the laws of the country. • As I see it, the only Christian who has a right to put to himself the hypothetical question put forward by your correspondent in the issue of April 5th under the above heading, is surely the person whose whole life's conduct is already based on the full teaching of Christ : " Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth " ; " Take no thought for tomorrow " ; `,` If any man take away thy cloak, let him have thy coat also " ; "Love not the world neither the things that are in the world," &c., &c.
The ordinary a la carte Christians who comprise 99 per cent.
of our population, clergy and laity alike, should, patriotism apart, be content to regulate their attitude towards war on the same grounds on which they defend their private rights ; the microcosm of their country's rights, which require organ- ized means of defence against aggression.—Yours faithfully,