The Radiant Christ
by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
Arise, O master artist of the age,
And paint the picture which at once shall be
Immortal art and bless’d prophecy.
The bruiséd vision of the world assuage;
To earth’s dark book add one illumined page,
So scintillant with truth, that all who see
Shall break from superstition and stand free.
Now let this wondrous work thy hand engage.
The mortal sorrow of the Nazarene,
Too long has been faith’s symbol and its sign;
Too long a dying Saviour has sufficed.
Give us the glowing emblem which shall mean
Mankind awakened to the Self Divine;
The living emblem of the Radiant Christ.
Too long the crucifix on Calvary’s height
Has cast its shadow on the human heart.
Let now Religion’s great co-worker Art,
Limn on the background of departing night,
The shining Face all palpitant with light,
And God’s true message to the world impart.
Go tell each toiler in the home and mart,
‘Lo, Christ is with ye, if ye seek aright.’
The world forgets the vital word Christ taught;
The only word the world has need to know:
The answer to creation’s problem - Love.
The world remembers what the Christ forgot;
His cross of anguish and His death of woe;
Release the martyr, and the Cross remove!
For now the former things have passed away,
And man, forgetting that which lies behind,
And ever pressing forward, seeks to find
The prize of his high calling. Send a ray
From art’s bright sun to fortify the day,
And blaze the trail to every mortal mind.
The new religion lies in being kind;
Faith stands and works, where once it knelt to pray;
Faith counts its gain, where once it reckoned loss;
Ascending paths its patient feet have trod;
Man looks within, and finds salvation there.
Release the suffering Saviour from the Cross,
And give the waiting world its Radiant God.