and meditation, he had descended some two inches. His hair was long, not because he made any conscious claim to genius, but because he forgot to get it cut, and, with his flowing, untrimmed beard, was now quite grey. Within his clothes he was the merest skeleton, being so thin that his shoulder-blades stood out in sharp outline, and his hands were almost transparent. The redeeming feature in Saunderson was his eyes, which were large and eloquent, of a trustful, wistful hazel, the beautiful eyes of a dumb animal. Whether he was expounding doctrines charged with despair of humanity, or exalting, in rare moments, the riches of a Divine love in which he did not expect to share, or humbly beseeching his brethren to give him information on some point in scholarship no one knew anything about except himself, or stroking the hair of some little child sitting upon his knee, those eyes were ever simple, honest, and most pathetic. Young ministers coming to the Presbytery full of self-conceit and new views were arrested
What started out seeming like a comedy about a gawky and socially awkward preacher turns into an emotional story of faith.
After being rejected by 23 parishes, a new Presbyterian minister finally finds a home. Respected for his knowledge, young ministers study with him, and call him Rabbi for his teaching. His faith and doubt of his own worth eventually separate him from friendship, and later love.
The Scottish dialect is a bit hard to make out at times, and the theology somewhat murky, but the story is mainly about emotions and conflicts.