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    February 27, 1890

    “Front Page” American Sentinel 5, 9.

    E. J. Waggoner

    In the Cincinnati National Reform Convention Judge M. B. Hagans said:-AMS February 27, 1890, page 65.1

    The people of this city are tired of being tied to a beer barrel seven days in the week.AMS February 27, 1890, page 65.2

    Therefore, that they may be loosed forever from the beer barrel, they want the saloon shut on Sunday. Certainly; they are tired of being tied to the beer barrel seven days in the week; tie them only six, and let them loose on Sunday, and they will all be happy. For our part we will have nothing to do with the wicked thing at all; and we will not compromise with it by asking that it be shut on Sunday only. The power that can shut the saloon on Sunday can shut it all the time. Therefore if they shut the saloon on Sunday and not all the time it shows that they do not want to shut it any of the time but Sunday. And the shutting of the saloon on Sunday only, is positive proof that it is not hatred of the saloon but love for Sunday which is expressed.AMS February 27, 1890, page 65.3

    Poor Mrs. Mary Jones, of One Hundred and Fourth Street, was found yesterday (February 8), with a dose of laudanum in her stomach. Being a dejected and distressed creature, it was assumed that she had attempted suicide. She was seized by a policeman, dragged out of her home, sent to Bellevue Hospital, where she was pumped out, and where she is to-day a prisoner under the idiotic law which assumes to punish people for trying and failing to dispose of their lives. Mrs. Jones says that she was ill and meant to take a dose of ginger, but got hold of the wrong bottle. Perhaps the poor, unfortunate woman is fibbing, but what a ridiculous law, is that which makes an attempted suicide a misdemeanor, and thereby sets a premium upon successful self-destruction!-New York World.AMS February 27, 1890, page 65.4

    True enough. And another ridiculous feature about such a law is, that it inflicts a heavier punishment upon the attempt to do a thing than upon the actual doing of it. That is, if a person attempts to kill himself and fails, he is fined and imprisoned; whereas if he actually kills himself, and even mangles himself all to pieces, he is let go scot free, with not the slightest attempt made to punish him in the least degree.AMS February 27, 1890, page 65.5

    “The Wickedness of Church and State Union” American Sentinel 5, 9.

    E. J. Waggoner

    In the Senate document containing the hearing (December 13, 1888) before the Committee on Education and Labor, on the Sunday-rest bill, we find on pages 65 and 66 certain statements made by Senator Blair, the chairman of the committee, and the author of the bill. He first asked Dr. Lewis the following questions:-AMS February 27, 1890, page 66.1

    Suppose that human beings trying to live in accordance with the will of God, re-enact his law and write it in their statute-books; is it wrong for society to put in their public law the requirement of obedience to God and his law?AMS February 27, 1890, page 66.2

    And then after a few words he proceeded to answer his own question in the following manner:-AMS February 27, 1890, page 66.3

    The will of God exists. He requires the observance of the seventh day just as he prohibits murder; and as we re-enact his law, in making a law and enforcing it against murder, so all the States have enacted laws against the desecration of the Sabbath, going further or not so far, according to the ideas of the various Legislatures.AMS February 27, 1890, page 66.4

    Let the reader give particular attention to the idea advanced by Senator Blair, that human beings may re-enact the law of God. The same idea was advanced by Mr. Crafts in the Christian Statesman of May 30, 1889. Said he:-AMS February 27, 1890, page 66.5

    The laws of our statute-books re-enact the seventh commandment are as distinctly biblical in their origin as the laws that re-enact a part of the fourth commandment.AMS February 27, 1890, page 66.6

    In what position does this place civil government? The only answer that can be given is that it puts it in the place of God, and makes it at least equal with God. Nay, more, in putting it in the place of God, it puts it above God; for if the State re-enacts and enforces the law of God, supposing such a thing to be possible, it takes the law out of his hands, leaving him nothing to do, and requires man to give supreme allegiance to the State. This will be more apparent when we quote another statement made by Senator Blair, in the connection before referred to. Said he:-AMS February 27, 1890, page 66.7

    Now the question comes right to this point: God having ordained the Sabbath, as you concede with all religious organizations, here is the national government, which alone can make that law of God operative in this sphere of national action. Why shall not the civil government, then, re-enact that conceded law of the Almighty and make it effective?AMS February 27, 1890, page 66.8

    Do we not say truly that the National deform idea, as voiced here by Senator Blair, puts the State in the place of God? He ignores God and his spirit entirely, in the statement that the national Government alone can make the law of God operative. We say, with as much reverence as the subject will allow, that we cannot see what use those who hold such an idea can have for God. They have usurped his prerogative.AMS February 27, 1890, page 67.1

    In the second chapter of 2 Thessalonians the apostle Paul describes a certain power known as the “man of sin,” the result of the working of the “mystery of iniquity.” This power is described as opposing and exalting itself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, and claiming really to be God. It has generally been considered that this language is a description of the Papacy, and we believe that that interpretation is correct; but surely it describes nothing more accurately than a government which attempts to do just what Senator Blair says this government ought to do. Therefore, everyone who believes this language of Paul to refer to the Papacy must admit that a government according to the National Reform idea would be nothing more than an image to the Papacy.AMS February 27, 1890, page 67.2

    But there is another point to be noticed in this connection, and that is the inevitable result of putting such ideas into practice. If it were universally conceded that the civil government has the power and the right to re-enact and enforce the law of God, that would involve the conclusion that there is no more to the moral law than civil government can enforce. The result would be the universal prevalence of immorality, and immorality of the worst kind, inasmuch as the individuals would suppose themselves to be acting in harmony with divine law.AMS February 27, 1890, page 67.3

    For example, take Mr. Blair’s statement to the effect that as we re-enact the law of God in making a law and enforcing it against murder, so all the States have enacted laws against the desecration of the Sabbath. Suppose the National Reform scheme had become triumphant, and it were understood that the Government takes the place of God, and enforces the divine law against murder, the result would be that any individual who did not in his envy and hatred toward his fellows go to the extreme of depriving them of life, would consider himself a moral man, although he might be full of hatred, malice, and envy. Take Mr. Craft’s idea that the State re-enacts the seventh commandment. It needs no argument to show that the State cannot punish man for vicious thoughts, or evil desires, or for any grade of licentiousness short of the overt act of adultery. But ministers and law-makers teach that the State enforces the seventh commandment; therefore the conclusion which the libertine would be warranted in making would be that he is a moral man if he abstains from violence. And so, when this National Reform idea shall be carried into effect, we shall have the State actually teaching vice and immorality.AMS February 27, 1890, page 67.4

    Such a condition of things would be a union of Church and State in its fullest extent. The Dark Ages stand as the great example of the effects of the union of Church and State, yet all that was done then was the enforcement by civil government of what the Church claimed was the law of God. We think that our friends can readily see from this that when the United States or any other government, legislates concerning any one or the whole of the commandments, it effects just to that extent a union of Church and State; and the argument already given shows how dangerous to morality and pure religion is such a union. The state of morality will be just as much below the true morality as the power that presumes to enforce the law of God is below God. Are there any of our Christian readers who wish to see such a condition of things in the United States, or who will lend their influence to bring it about?AMS February 27, 1890, page 67.5

    E. J. W.AMS February 27, 1890, page 67.6

    “Sunday Rest Leagues” American Sentinel 5, 9.

    E. J. Waggoner

    The Pearl of Days, official organ of the American Sabbath Union, makes the following announcement in its issue of February 7, 1890:-AMS February 27, 1890, page 70.1

    The Sunday Closing Association, of Chicago, acting upon the Roman military principle of “carrying the war into Africa,” has prepared “a plan for the organization of the Sunday-rest people in each ward” into Sunday-rest leagues. The Constitution thus defines the purposes and terms of membership:-AMS February 27, 1890, page 70.2

    ART. 2.-The object of this league shall be to cooperate with the Chicago Sunday Closing Association in securing, by all proper means, freedom from unnecessary Sunday labor, and especially the closing of factories, shops, stores, and saloons on Sunday.AMS February 27, 1890, page 70.3

    ART. 3.-This lead shall be composed of representatives of the whole population of the—ward, independent of sectarian control or party dictation. Any citizen who is in favor of the object of this Association and desires to aid in the furtherance of the same may become a member by signing this constitution.AMS February 27, 1890, page 70.4

    Ward organizers will be appointed to carry out these provisions. Efforts will be paid to secure the selection of alderman at the coming city election who favor the closing of saloons on Sundays and the cessation of all unnecessary work on that day. No sect, faction, or special influence will control the ward leagues. The men who want to rest on Sunday will control the ward organizations, and they will have the opportunity of making their influence felt at the ballot-box, whether of independent candidates or four nominees of either political party who will favor Sunday rest. By this method of working the city, which is substantially after the long-established ways of the old political organizations, the Sunday Closing Association expects to develop, direct, and establish public opinion for practical advances upon the enemy’s works. It is “bearding the land in his den.” The idea is novel, inspiring, and bold. Its results will be watchful with interest, and example, if even partially successful on the great city of the West, will be followed in more favorable localities. It means much more than a mass meetings and strings of resolutions.AMS February 27, 1890, page 70.5

    “Back Page” American Sentinel 5, 9.

    E. J. Waggoner

    The Nashville Christian Advocate says:-AMS February 27, 1890, page 72.1

    The Church needs more power rather than more machinery. It is a malign paradox of ecclesiastical history that as power declines machinery increases.AMS February 27, 1890, page 72.2

    True enough. And the power of the churches in the United States has declined, and the machinery has increased to that extent that nothing short of the machinery of the national Government is counted of any worth. And in the enactment and enforcement of the National Sunday-law, they demand that this machinery shall be set in motion.AMS February 27, 1890, page 72.3

    A federation of the churches of the United States is earnestly advocated by Dr. McCosh, ex-president of Princeton College, somewhat after the mode of the Federal Government of the United States. We should not be surprised if some such scheme as that would yet be entered into by the churches. The organization of the Church upon the political model of the Empire in the fourth century was the one grand step in the organization of the Papal hierarchy. “Say ye not, A confederacy, to all them to whom this people shall say A confederacy.” Isaiah 8:12.AMS February 27, 1890, page 72.4

    Under the leadership of the so-called Woman’s Christian Temperance Union, of Rhode Island, the friends of prohibition in that State, are being organized into a sort of fourth-party called the “Prohibitory League,” with the object of getting a prohibition amendment to the State Constitution adopted again. A prohibition amendment was adopted in 1886, and was repealed in 1889. and now the prohibition Woman’s Christian Temperance Union propose to have it again enacted. At this rate the Constitution of Rhode Island becomes practically of no more weight than is any act of the legislature.AMS February 27, 1890, page 72.5

    It is the just pride of the American people, that their liberties are guarded by written Constitutions. When Constitutional provisions are reduced to the level of Statute law, to be enacted or repealed at the caprice of parties, then constitutional government is gone and liberty with it; and nothing remains but an unchecked and therefore unmitigated despotism. In this way the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union and the Third and Fourth party Prohibition parties are doing far-reaching and untold evil.AMS February 27, 1890, page 72.6

    National Reform principles are gaining ground in other countries as well as in our own. The Christian Statesman of February 13 makes the following announcement:-AMS February 27, 1890, page 72.7

    A Hindoo gentleman has called a congress of Brahmin priests and learned men for the purpose of incorporating the Bible among the sacred books of India, and officially recognizing Christ as the last spiritual Avatar, or incarnation of Brahma, the supreme deity.AMS February 27, 1890, page 72.8

    When they shall have officially recognized Christ, and incorporated the Bible, India will be a Christian nation of course, just as officially to recognize Christ and the Bible in our national constitution will make this a Christian nation.AMS February 27, 1890, page 72.9

    Through contentions in the Legislature New York City stood in much danger of losing the World’s Fair for 1892. Mass meetings were held this week, on Tuesday, to create such a public sentiment as might bring the Legislature to concerted action. In the preliminary meeting that was held to organize for the mass meetings, the principal speech was made by Colonel Shepard of the Mail and Express, and one point on which he laid special stress was this:-AMS February 27, 1890, page 72.10

    Ask the ministers to pray for pleasant weather on that day, and do not do any of your preparatory work on Sunday.AMS February 27, 1890, page 72.11

    But Hon. Chauncey, M. Depew said that he read in the Bible “Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the children of God,” and on the strength of that text he spent all day Sunday in the endeavor to bring the warring factions to an aggreement, and he was successful. The mass meeting was a splendid success; but it was evident to everybody that that success was vastly more owing to Mr. Depew’s Sunday work than to Mr. Shepard’s Sunday rest.AMS February 27, 1890, page 72.12

    Another step by Congress toward legislating in behalf of religion appears in a bill-Fifty-first Congress, S. 1748-introduced by Senator Vance, of North Carolina, “For the Relief of the Sisters of the Holy Cross in the City of Washington, District of Columbia,” which provides that-AMS February 27, 1890, page 72.13

    From and after the passage of this act a certain piece of land in the city of Washington, District of Columbia, known as lot sixteen, in square two hundred and forty-seven of the plan of that city, and owned and occupied by the Sisters of the Cross, and all the buildings and grounds appurtenant thereto and used in connection therewith, in the District of Columbia, shall be exempt from any and all taxes and assessments, national, municipal, or county; and all taxes or assessments, together with the interest and penalties now due and unpaid upon said property shall be, and they are hereby remitted.AMS February 27, 1890, page 72.14

    Why should the property of “the Sisters of the Holy Cross” be exempt from all taxes and assessments, any more than the property of everybody else? What is the particular benefit of the Sisters of the Holy Cross, over everybody else, to the nation, the city, and the county, that their property should be exempt from all taxes and assessments at the expense of everybody else in the nation, the city, and the county? It will doubtless be answered that this is church property, and that all church property is exempt. Then we would ask the same questions in regard to all the church property in the nation. Why should the people be required thus to pay tribute to the churches? If Congress can require that this measure of tribute shall be paid by the public to the churches, why can it not also require that all the revenues required by the churches shall likewise be paid by the public? If so much shall be done when it is asked, what is to hinder the doing of all the rest as it shall be asked? Our comments upon the bill concerning the clock and bells are to be applied to this bill also; and of this, too, we say, Let it be killed. And let every other like it be annihilated throughout the Union.AMS February 27, 1890, page 72.15

    The Fresno (Cal.) Inquirer, a live newspaper published in the metropolis of the San Joaquin Valley, has a “Department of Church and State and Temperance,” ably edited by N. J. Bowers, a former contributor to the columns of the AMERICAN SENTINEL. We are glad that the secular press not only in California, but very generally throughout the country, is waking up to the importance of this question; and this is the more encouraging from the fact that a large majority of the secular papers are opposed to so-called National Reform, and to the schemes of the American Sabbath Union. We bid the Inquirer Godspeed in its new departure, and trust that it will add greatly both to its popularity and to its influence.AMS February 27, 1890, page 72.16

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