Again the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples;…
The most elementary mathematics treats of two laws of progression, which are distinguished by the terms "arithmetical" and "geometrical." The one grows by the successive addition of a fixed quantity; in the other, each successive term is increased by a fixed proportion of itself. Now, let the quantity added in a progression of the first sort be never so large, and the proportion in a progression of the second kind never so small, the last will eventually outstrip the first. But what is more important to notice is, that the arithmetical progression is the law of mechanical growth, while the other is the law of the growth of lifo. A tree does not grow by the addition of a certain number of twigs and leaves every year; but where a leaf was one year, there we find a twig with several leaves the next year. The human race itself follows the law of a living organism, and grows not by the addition of a certain number each year, but by a certain proportion of the population of the previous year. If, then, the Church is ever to overtake the world, it must grow, not by the arithmetical, but by the geometrical law; and as the world had the start, its rate of growth must be greater. The Church must be a living organism, and an organism of greater vitality than the human race. Its growth must be something out of itself, something proportionate to itself. The work of the individual is the true law of the Church's growth, stamped upon it from the very beginning. How easy it was for the three disciples to become six l Each man brings in one; that is all. And these men are not now apostles or ministers; they are private Christians — mere babes in Christ. What they did all can do.
(P. H. Hoge.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Again the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples;