Page images

war for principle, she had better emigrate, and we will get room for her.


Extract from Sermon.- Texts: Luke iv. 17-21, Matt. xi. 2-6.



HE remarkable people of this world are useful in their way; but the common people, after all, represent the nation, the age, and the civilization. Go into any town or city: do not ask who lives in that splendid house; do not say, This is a fine town, here are streets of houses with gardens and yards, and everything that is beautiful the whole way through. Go into the lanes, go into the back streets, go where the mechanic lives; go where the day-laborer lives. See what is the condition of the streets there. See what they do with the poor, with the helpless and the mean. If the top of society bends perpetually over the bottom with tenderness, if the rich and strong are the best friends of the poor and needy, that is a civilized and a Christian community; but if the rich and the wise are the cream and the great bulk of the population skim-milk, that is not a prosperous community.

There is a great deal of irreligion in men; there

is a great deal of wickedness and depravity in men, but there are times when it is true that the church is more dissipated than the dissipated classes of the community. If there is one thing that stood out more strongly than any other in the ministry of our Lord, it is the severity with which he treated the exclusiveness of men with knowledge, position, and a certain sort of religion, a religion of particularity and carefulness; if there is one class of the community against which he hurled his thunderbolts without mercy and predicted woes, it was the scribes, Pharisees, scholars, and priests of the temples. He told them in so many words, "The publican and the harlot will enter the kingdom of God before you." The worst dissipation in this world is the dry-rot of morality, and of the socalled piety that separates men of prosperity and of power from the poor and ignoble. They are our wards.


I am not a socialist. I do not preach riot. I do not preach the destruction of property. I regard property as one of the sacred things. The real property established by a man's own intelligence and labor is the crystallized man himself. is the fruit of what his life-work has done; and not in vain, society makes crime against it amongst the most punishable. But nevertheless, I warn these

men in a country like ours, where every man votes, whether he came from Hungary, or from Russia, or from Germany, or from France or Italy, or Spain or Portugal, or from the Orient,- from Japan and China, because they too are going to vote! On the Niagara River, logs come floating down and strike an island, and there they lodge and accumulate for a little while, and won't go over. But the rains come, the snow melts, the river rises, and the logs are lifted up and down, and they go swinging over the falls. The stream of suffrage of free men, having all the privileges of the State, is this great stream. The figure is defective in this, that the log goes over the Niagara Falls, but that is not the way the country is going or will go. There is a certain river of political life, and everything has to go into it first or last; and if, in days to come, a man separates himself from his fellows without sympathy, if his wealth and power make poverty feel itself more poor and men's misery more miserable, and set against him the whole stream of popular feeling, that man is in danger. He may not know who dynamites him, but there is danger; and let him take heed who is in peril. There is nothing easier in the world than for rich men to ingratiate themselves with the whole community in which they live, and so secure them

[ocr errors]

selves. It is not selfishness that will do it; it is not by increasing the load of misfortune; it is not by wasting substance in riotous living upon appetites and passions. It is by recognizing that every man is a brother. It is by recognizing the essential spirit of the gospel, "Love thy neighbor as thyself." It is by using some of their vast power and riches so as to diffuse joy in every section of the community.

Here then I close this discourse. How much it enrolls! How very simple it is! It is the whole gospel. When you make an application of it to all the phases of organization and classification of human interests and developments, it seems as though it were as big as the universe. Yet when you condense it, it all comes back to the one simple creed: "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and thy neighbor as thyself." Who is my neighbor? A certain man went down to Jericho, and so on. That tells you who your neighbor is. Whosoever has been attacked by robbers, has been beaten, has been thrown down — by liquor, by gambling, or by any form of wickedness; whosoever has been cast into distress, and you are called on to raise him up that is your neighbor.

Love your neighbor as yourself. That is the gospel.



Ormsby McKnight Mitchell, was born in Morganfield, Ky., July 28, 1809, and died in Beaufort, S. C., October 30, 1862.


IGHT traverses space at the rate of a million

miles a minute, yet the light from the nearest star requires ten years to reach the earth, and Herschel's telescope revealed stars two thousand three hundred times further distant. The great telescope of Lord Ross pursued these creations of God still deeper into space, and, having resolved the nebula of the Milky Way into stars, discovered other systems of stars - beautiful diamond points, glittering through the black darkness beyond. When he beheld this amazing abyss when he saw

these systems scattered profusely throughout space - when he reflected upon their immense distance, their enormous magnitude, and the countless millions of worlds that belong to them it seemed to him as though the wild dream of the German poet was more than realized.

"God called man in dreams into the vestibule of heaven, saying, 'come up higher, and I will show thee the glory of my house '; and to his angels who

« PreviousContinue »