THE Christian Statesman says: “A greater peril to the Sabbath even than Sunday opening at Chicago, is the widespread Sabbath-breaking of Christians. It is the Achan that causes our defeats and delays our victory.” It is a truly deplorable thing that professed Christians so very generally disregard the Sabbath. Even the editors of the Statesman observe another day and heap contempt on the day the Lord sanctified and blessed. It is little wonder that the flocks go astray when the shepherds wander from right paths. The widespread agitation of the Sabbath question is rapidly destroying regard for Sunday, for it is revealing the fact that it is without divine authority. But as this becomes more apparent the demand for human law to bolster up the tottering institution becomes more imperative. Ephraim is joined to his idol.
A SECULAR paper remarks the “the seizure of an Aztec god at Xohiltepec, in Mexico, by the Catholic Archbishop, has stirred up the god’s Indian devotees, who threaten to go on the war-path in his behalf. He is of stone, and in form is partly human, partly aquiline. We presume that the archbishop must have believed he had a right to seize the god of the Aztec religion; and yet it is a fact that, under the Constitution of Mexico, all religions are tolerated there, so that the Indians are as free to worship their god as the Chinese, for example, are to worship theirs.” And then this paper, which is none other than the Sun of this city, shows its utter lack of appreciation of the real principle involved, by saying: “We do not see, however, that the Indians of Xohiltepec need to do battle for their god. They can make another.”
A ZEALOUS Sunday preacher thinks that the Georgia railroads are in the hands of a receiver because the frown of God is upon them for running Sunday trains. It is, of course, a little difficult to prove a negative in such a case; but will the gentleman who advances the theory explain the accident to the Sunday school excursion train near East Aurora, N.Y., on Monday, the 17th inst., in which twenty-two persons were injured? Have Sunday schools become such wicked things that the Lord has to maim those who attend them? or was this particular school alone at fault? And while the gentleman is about it he might devote a little attention to the wind that demolished Sam Jones’ tent wherein he was preaching on a recent Sunday. Is preaching in a tent on Sunday also wicked?
GOVERNMENTS have in past ages assumed to dominate the realm of conscience; the sequel is the history of the Inquisition. The thumbscrew, the rack, and the fagot are inseparable from the theory that civil government has any jurisdiction whatever in religious things. The advocates of religious legislation may affirm that they would not carry it so far as that, but it is impossible for them to stop short of it without abandoning their theory. It is for this reason that we oppose all laws touching religious questions and controversies. They are the beginnings of intolerance. If Sunday were not regarded as sacred there would be no demand for laws enforcing its observance. It is not physical rest but spiritual worship that is the object of Sunday laws. It is therefore a matter that the State has no right to touch. It is for this reason that we oppose any and all Sunday laws.