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then, why go to war? the answer is, if in obedience to the pacific principles of the Gospel I abstain from war, I shall expose myself and mine to spoliation and murder. This ar

gument or rather assertion, overlooks the protecting providence of God over those who faithfully, from the heart, serve and obey him. The best answer to this sceptical objection is to adduce facts which bear upon them that impress of Divine protection, which the objector's want of faith makes him virtually deny by his actions. Dr. Hancock's work, entitled, The Principles of Peace exemplified in the conduct of the Society of Friends in Ireland, during the Rebellion of the year 1798, supplied facts of this description: of the same character is the following narrative, extracted from the Memoir of Abel Thomas, a man who moved in a humble sphere of life, with which his education corresponded; but the simplicity and plainness of his account is rather a recommendation than an objection to it.-EDITOR.]

In the year 1778, after much close exercise from a prospect of religious duty which he opened to, and was united with by, Exeter Monthly Meeting, of which he was a member, he proceeded on a visit to some meetings in New Jersey, and in part of the state of New-York, having for his companion James Thomas, a member of the same meeting. As this was in the time of the revolutionary war, and the city of NewYork then in possession of the British troops, travelling in our country was rendered extremely difficult, through the great suspicion which was continually excited in the minds of the different contending parties, under an idea that persons going from their places of residence in this season of commotion must have some sinister motives, and would, as opportunities presented, prove inimical to the cause in which they were

respectively engaged: thus in many instances, even going to religious meetings, was, in the apprehensions of the persons in power, deemed as sufficient evidence of treacherous designs concealed under the plausible, yet insincere, profession of religious duty. Accordingly, after visiting several meetings in the state of NewYork, returning into New Jersey, they were stopped by the military, who, finding that they were innocent men, discharged them; but soon after they were again apprehended, taken to Newark, and after some detention, sent under guard as prisoners to Princeton, where they were examined by the governor (Livingston,) and council, being supposed to be guilty of treason; before whom he made the following defence.

"The words of a prisoner who had liberty by the Governor and Council to speak in his own defence, supposed by law to be guilty of death.

"I am glad of liberty to speak in my own defence before the governor and his council. I hope you are moderate, considerate men, and will hear me patiently while I speak forth the words of truth and soberness. We live, when at home, in Berks County, Pennsylvania; I have been looked upon as a minister of the Gospel amongst the people called Quakers, from about the twentysecond year of my age; and under the exercise thereof have travelled much in America, and visited the meetings of Friends generally from Nova Scotia to Georgia, and many of them several times over. And in this great work I have ever observed the good rules of discipline used among us. When I have felt my mind drawn in love towards my brethren in any part of America, I have always laid it before my brethren at the monthly meeting for their approbation, and in like manner so at this time.

"I spoke of it to the monthly meeting, and after solid consideration they gave me a certificate signed by the elders and heads of the meeting, which I have in my pocket. We then proceeded on our journey, and crossed Delaware at Coryell's ferry, and visited the meetings generally until we came to the North (Hudson) River, which we crossed about four miles below Poughkeepsie, and rode through the town some miles eastward, to a meeting, and so visited the meetings generally in that government without any interruption until we came to White Plains, where we were stopped by the guard. We told the lieutenant we were going to Mamaroneck meeting; he gave us leave to go, but afterwards sent a horseman for us, who informed us we must have a few lines from the colonel before we should go. We rode back four or five miles to the colonel's, who gave us a pass to go to Mamaroneck meeting, and from thence we went to West Chester. After meeting we went to the water-side, to go over to Long Island; there was no boat there: we made a smoke for a signal to the ferryman on the other side to come for us, which he did; but informed us what we might depend upon, that he was under an obligation to send all strangers that he brought over to the colonel's at Flushing. When we were over he sent a guard with us to the colonel's. We informed him our business on the island. His answer was to us, If that was our business, it was a pity to hinder us. He readily gave us a permit to travel through the island. We visited eight meetings. I think we were at a meeting every day we staid there; and when our service was over, we crossed the Sound to New-York, where we had two meetings; and when we were clear of that place, we, with the assistance of our friends, got a pass from the chief commanding officer of that place, to cross the North River at Powles

Hook. When we were over, I gave that pass to the colonel, who went up stairs in a private chamber. While I stood at the door there came an officer, (as I thought by his dress,) and asked me if I was not afraid to go among the rebels. I told him I was innocent, and not afraid to go among my own countrymen. The colonel sent for me to come up to him; he gave me our pass, with an endorsement on the back of it, to pass the picket guards, and offered me a newspaper, and told me I might divert myself as I rode, in reading it. I told him I had nothing to do with politics, neither did I incline to read newspapers. He told me I was at my liberty, and so we parted. We had not gone but a few rods from the door until a soldier commanded us to stop; he began to untie our great coats and search our bags.

"When we were in New-York, our friends told us of a judge whose name was Fell, that had been a prisoner there thirteen months. When he was first taken he was put in the Provost, and he, being a tender man, in close confinement, was not likely to continue long. We were informed that ten of our friends joined together to do their utmost, by treating with the officers, for his liberty in the town; they at length obtained it, by being bound in the sum of one thousand pounds for his good behaviour in the city. The judge behaved himself so well as to gain the good-will of the officers, who gave him liberty to go home to his family, upon parole of honour. Our friends, considering the difficulties we might meet with when out of the English lines, thought it best for me, (as the judge was yet in town,) to go to him. A friend went with me, whose name is Henry Haydock. After that friend, who had long been acquainted with me, had recommended me to him, and made known to the judge my circumstances, he said he was a prisoner, and could do but little for me, but

what he could he would. He in formed me he had a son who was a major, that lived about Hackinsack: if I could find him, and tell him that I had seen his father, he believed he would show me kindness; and if he saw him before I did, he would speak to him concerning me. I asked him if he dare write a line to him. The judge thought it not safe. He gave me his name on a small piece of paper (which I have in my pocket), and told me his son would know his hand.

"We went on our journey from Powles Hook, and travelled near twenty miles, when we were stopped by the guards, our bags taken off and searched. We inquired for Major Fell. They told us he lived many miles from that place; and informed us of a major who lived four or five miles back, where we went without a guard. After that major examined us and searched our pocket-books, and had seen judge Fell's hand writing, which he knew, he gave us a pass to the highest officer in Elizabeth town, which I have with me. We went forward through Hackinsack, and came to Passaick River, then crossed the ferry to a little village, where we were stopped by the guard, our bags again taken off and searched thoroughly, but nothing found that was offensive. Soon after there came along the road a major in a waggon, who stopped and came to us, and in a very furious manner, asked us where we had been. I told him we had been to New-York. He asked me if I did not know that there was a strict law against it. I told him I thought that law was not made for such men as we were. Then he, in a great rage, ordered the guard to bring us down to Newark; and we were had there before a judge, a justice, and two majors. After examination, we were sent to the guardhouse, where we were closely confined that night. The next morning we were sent for to the major's house,

where was a justice, who read to us the law which we had not before heard; by which we understood our lives were forfeited. We were then had to the judge's house, where our guard received orders to take us to the governor's. The judge and his officers blamed us much, that we did not go to the governor's at Pough, keepsie, (in the state of New-York,) in order to get a pass to go to York or Long Island. We did not know it was death by the law, until we had rode between thirty and forty miles below Poughkeepsie, and then we did not know that it was possible for a stranger to obtain a permit from the governor to go within the English lines. And concerning deceiving the colonel at the White Plains, in not telling him we were going to NewYork, if he had asked me the question, I believe I should have told him the truth.

"When I heard it was death by the law to go to Long Island and New-York,. I was struck with a serious sadness, and did not know what to do. To go forward, it was death by the laws of the land-and to go homeward, it was death by the law of the spirit of life. But after considering the matter calmly in my→ self, I concluded to go forward, with a strong resolution to keep myself entirely clear of those crimes for which the law was made, and in so doing I should be innocent before God, and more excusable before my countrymen at my return. And I can assure the governor and his council, that I have not said or done any thing knowingly or with a design to injure individuals, or my countrymen in general, and let the governor or his council judge whether I am guilty of death, or further confinement. If guilty, I must endeavour to suffer patiently, according to your laws; but if the governor and council should judge me innocent, I desire a pass to go home, and liberty. in it to go back to Plainfield, Rahway,

Shrewsbury, Squan, Squankum, Barnegat, Egg Harbours, and Cape May, from whence I intend to go home, if the Lord permit."

It would seem as though this was all that he said; but his humility has operated to the, suppression of what he further expressed to the council: that, if this his visit should be judged a capital offence, which must be punished with death, that he only might suffer, and his companion be permitted to go home, as his only motive was merely to accompany him in the journey. The governor and council, after hearing this simple, undisguised relation, being conscious that nothing but a sense of religious duty could have induced him to undertake such a journey, in a time of extreme difficulty and peril, freely, and with that magnanimity which ever accompanies genuine benevolence, granted the following pass, viz.

"PRINCETON, 26th May, 1778. "Council of Safety, State of New Jersey. "Abel Thomas and James Thomas, inhabitants of Pennsylvania, being sent under guard to the President and Council of Safety by two magistrates of Newark, for having been into the enemy's lines in the city of New-York and Long Island without passports, and suspected of designs injurious to the liberties of America: the board, upon hearing their defence, were satisfied of their innocence, and have reason to believe, that their journey to the several places which they have visited, was undertaken on a religious account, and agreeable to their declared intention to the meeting held at Maiden Creek the 25th day of March, 1778, of performing a religious visit to the meetings of Friends in part of the Jerseys and part of New-York governments. The board therefore discharges the said Abel and James Thomas from their present confinement: and they being further desirous to visit the meetings of their friends at Plainfield, Rahway, Shrewsbury, Squan, Squankum,

Barnegat, Great and Little Egg Harbour, and at the Capes, and this government being unwilling to obstruct any society in the exercise of their religion, the said Abel and James Thomas are permitted to pass to the nine places last mentioned, and then to the State of Pennsylvania.

"WILLIAM LIVINGSTON, President." To be continued.

Pacific Effects of Christianity on the

warlike South Sea Islanders.

MR. ELLIS, in his Polynesian Researches, gives the following account of the peace promoting effects of the gospel, as exhibited among the newly christianized inhabitants of the South Sea Islands. So warlike a

race were the tenants of these beautiful islands, that war seemed to be at once the business and pleasure of their lives; the commencement of hostilities was hailed with demoniac shouts of joy. "No event in their history," says Mr. Ellis, " no character in their biography appeared unconnected with some warlike expedition or feat of arms.

In connexion with this state of society, how cheering is the contrast exhibited since the introduction of christianity. The transient affair at Huahine [in which no blood was shed], in connexion with which these remarks have been introduced, and similar occurrences in Raiatea and Tahaa between the chiefs, together with a great body of the people, on the one side, and those dissatisfied with the moral restraints the new laws imposed upon their conduct, to which under idolatry they had been unaccustomed, on the other, are the only public disturbances that have occurred. few disaffected and lawless young fellows at Raiatea, supposing the missionaries were chiefly instrumental in the adoption and maintenance of the laws, formed a plan for murdering them, and overturning the government. Mr. Williams, who was


to have been the first object of their vengeance, averted the threatened danger by what appeared to him, at the time, a circumstance entirely accidental, but which afterwards proved a remarkable interposition of Providence for the preservation of his life. With these exceptions, the inhabitants have, since their adoption of christianity, enjoyed uninterrupted peace during a longer period than it was ever before known to exist

among them. Some noble instances of calm determination not to appeal to arms have been given by Utami, and other governors; the love and culture of peace having indeed succeeded their delight in the practice of war, even in the most turbulent and fighting districts. It is well known, Mr. Darling observes, in reference to the district of Atehuru, that the inhabitants of this part of Tahiti were always the first to make war. False reports reached the ear of the king's party, who were told that the people of Atehuru entertained evil designs against the royal family. Rumours of war were spread by the adherents of the king, but instead of rejoicing as they would formerly have done, every one appeared to dread it as the greatest calamity. They gathered round the house of the missionary, declaring that if attacked they would not fight, but would willingly become prisoners or slaves rather than go to war. The threatened war was thus prevented; those with whom the reports had originated were sought out; appeal was made to the laws, instead of the club and the spear, and the matter submitted to the magistrate rather than to the warrior.


The pu

nishment annexed to the circulation of false and injurious reports was inflicted on the offenders, and the parties united in amity and friendship.

"As they feel the blessings of peace increase with its continuance, their desire to perpetuate it appears

stronger. Its prevalence and extent are often surprising, even to themselves; and some of the most striking illustrations of the advantages of true religion, and appeals for its support and extension, are drawn from this fact, and expressed in terms like these: 'Let our hands forget how to lift the club and throw the spear. Let our guns decay with rust,‚—we want them not; for though we have been pierced with balls and spears, if we pierce each other now, let it be with the word of God. How happy are we now. We sleep not with our cartridges under our heads, our muskets by our side, and our hearts palpitating with alarm. Now we have the Bible, we know the Saviour; and if all knew him,—if all bowed the knee to him,--there would be no more war on the earth.'

"It is not in public only that they manifest these sentiments; in ordinary life, at home, they act upon them. The most affectionate and friendly intercourse is cultivated between the parties who formerly cherished the most implacable hatred, and often vowed each other's extermination. Offices of kindness and affection are performed with promp titude and cheerfulness; and though by some their weapons are retained as relics of past days, or securities against invasion, by many they are destroyed. Often have I seen a gunbarrel or other iron weapon, that has been carried to the forge, submitted to the fire, laid upon the anvil and beaten, not exactly into a ploughshare or a pruning-hook (for the vine does not stretch its luxuriant branches along the sides of their sunny hills), but beaten into an implement of husbandry, and used by its proprietor in the cultivation of his plantation or his garden. Their weapons of wood also have often been employed as handles for their tools; and their implements of war have been converted with promptitude into the furniture of the earthly sanctuary of

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