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A few words which speak to why FCCO began a sermon archive from Pastor Charles R. Brown in 1898.
— Introduction from "Two Parables" 1898 —
"This little book is not an attempt at the systematic exposition of the "Two Parables," — that work has already been well done. It contains a series of sermons growing out of those two passages in the teachings of our Lord, and its purpose is to interpret His words and apply their lessons to the needs of common life. These sermons where preached, not consecutively, to the people of the F
irst Congregational Church in Oakland, California, and the kindly comments of those good friends, and their oft-expressed wish to have them in permanent form, furnish me my chief reason for putting them in print.
I confess, also, to another motive. By the pressure of that more than Athenian craze to hear ever some new thing, some of us are impelled to search out the queer and odd texts that lie in the corners of holy writ. The cleverness displayed in some of the startling selections is remarkable, but wholesome good taste often suffers in the house of those who should be its staunchest friends. "Old friends are the best;" and so are old texts. Those verses from the Bible which have passed into such common use as to form part of the the circulating medium of daily speech, will, when interpreted in fresh and vital fashion, prove the most useful texts to be had. If these sermons on two of the most familiar passages in the New Testament should serve, however imperfectly, to illustrate this fact, I should count it a privilege to modestly offer them "for the good of the Order."
— Pastor Charles R. Brown, March 15, 1898
First Congregational Church, 1001 Broadway in Oakland, California