It has been the purpose of this study to investigate the life
and work of Joseph Parker in as full 0 manner as possible within the
bounds of our subject. We have already considered, the results of
that study and the fulfilment of that purpose. Our work is completed.
In pursuing our task we have made it our purpose to read most of the
published works of Parker, and everything published by others which
have made reference to hits. The foregoing chapters are designed to
represent that which these materials have had to say concerning our
subject. What we shall say in this brief section, therefore, will be
by way of a very broad end general summery and personal appreciation.
Perhaps there is not a little significance in the fact that
this initial investigation of Joseph Parker, the first to be undertaken since his death, is the work of an American. For Parker himself clearly demonstrated his interest in and admiration for the
people of the United States on numerous occasions, and in various
ways. America, he felt, was emphatically the new world; "in conception,
in impulse and in eternal hopefulness, it was uniquely and vitally
new.Through the honorary degree conferred upon him by the University
of Chicago; the six visits to the American continent; end by virtue of
of his published sermons and his firm friendship with Henry Ward Beecher, John Gough, David Swing, and Theodore Quyler, he was inextricably "bound up with the United States. Indeed, it is not too
much to say that the people of the Berth American continent played
no small part in giving Joseph Parker his rightful place in the
judgement of the religious world
We have lived with Joseph Barker for some time. We
have read his sermons and digested his thinking; he has made us
laugh end he has carried us along in the fire and emotion of his
dramatic oratory, and in reading his prayers we, too, have learned
to pray, We wanted to study a great preacher and we have been satisfied beyond measure. He has gone from the earth - great, rugged,
lovable, incomprehensible figure that he was. He has gone to be
completed in that land where the giant and the child in him have
been made one forever more. Throughout these pages we have tried,
often in vain, to measure and appraise his worth and even now we are
assured that we have cut scratched the surface of his life and work.
For the marvellous gifts that mode him the preacher he was, end the
power he deserved to be, few have & more profound admiration than we.
He loved to be independent, and he was what ho loved to be. Ho man
would have lost more than he by subjection to & system; no man gained
more from the courage that dared to stand and think and speak alone.
What real effect did Joseph Parker have on his own
generation? Who can .fully say? His power was local and international.
In one instance, his preaching caused a young London chemist to think
on and adopt the Christian ministry as his life's work. Again, the
force of his preaching, the suggestive nature of his thought, and
the enthusiastic fellowship of Ms Gity Temple exerted no email
Influence over the life of one young Indian student, Mahatrna Ghandi.
Indeed, it needs little imagination to understand how deeply
Ghaadi's heart and mind were influenced by the characteristic and
challenging nature of Parker's sermons and the friendly nature of
the congregation where all racial and national barriers were
forgotten and all men were brought within the. Fatherhood of God.
Years afterwards, Ghandi overheard some of his Hindu followers
speaking unkindly of Englishmen, and he stopped them at once by
"I cannot allow anyone to speak against Englishmen
in my presence, for when I was a student in London, I
had four friends especially. One of there was Or. Parker
of the City Temple which I used to attend, and there was
a fellow student ... an Englishman, and the others
were two maiden ladies of Dr. Parker's congregation who
threw open their house to myself and friend. I can
never forget the kindness of these people to me, who was
not one of their own race."
When Leslie Weatherhead surveyed the destruction of the Gity
Temple he tells us that he saw the marble figure of Joseph Parker,
"thrown from its pedestal, but still erect, with that proud,
majestic, serene strong face, scorched by the glare and chipped by
the blast of bombs, but still challenging evil to do its worst."
We, too, have seen end heard that man, ceiling and challenging us
and our colleagues in the ministry to greater industry in our work,
deeper devotion to the Word, and unyielding allegiance to Jesus
Christ. Indeed, ail men felt that life was larger, more exalted
and ennobled because the great soul of Joseph Parker passed,