February 2, 1899
THE “Sabbath of the Lord” has nothing to gain by being Americanized.
THE result of “moral reform” by force is always reform backwards.
TRUTH depends upon its power to convict people; error always wants to employ force.
POLITICAL “pull” for the church is a pull that opens her doors to political hypocrites and knaves.
THERE are some in the pulpits who seem to image that a diploma from a theological seminary is a certificate of their ability to manage both the spiritual and the temporal affairs of their fellows.
THE man who has a price for his conscience has no conscience that is worth buying.
MORAL reform by law means letting go of the consciences of men to grasp for their ballots.
THE self-made man is a vast improvement on the government-made man. Legislation cannot give a man backbone.
A PROFESSION of righteousness is not moral reform, but it is all that can be secured for an individual or a nation by law.
THE man who cannot find the gospel in the Declaration of Independence has not yet found it as it is in the Word of God.
[Inset.] CIVIL GOVERNMENT AMS IT WOULD BE UNDER THE “REFORM BUREA,” AT WAMSHINGTON. A “REFORM BUREAU” has been set up at the seat of the national Government, for the purpose of introducing moral issues into national legislation, and instructing members of Congress how they must vote on the same. The central idea of this institution is that the clergy are pre-eminently qualified for statesmanship,—the same idea with which the papacy started in the early centuries. While they seek now to persuade, they would dictate if they had the power. Through the large religious organizations with which these clerical “reformers” are in touch, they would control the popular vote, and so shut out from Congress every person who could not show a certification of moral character issued by them; in other words, every person who would not declare his readiness to vote for religious legislation,—which, of course, would not debar any knave who was not above being a hypocrite. It is time now if ever in the history of this nation, to bear in mind the warning words of Hon. Richard M. Johnson, in the U. S. Senate Report on Sunday Mails: “All religious despotism commences by combination and influence; and when that influence begins to operate upon the political institutions of a country, the civil power soon bends under it; and the catastrophe of other nations furnishes an awful warning of the consequences.”