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template with the hope of some good arising out of it. We have had some recent communications from Holland, which prove that the principles of peace are gaining ground in that country. In the Count de Sellon, of Switzerland, we have an active coadjutor and correspondent." The annual meeting of the London Peace Society was held in May, and the report then made is now probably on the way to us. Should the time of our annual meeting be changed (as is proposed) we trust we shall hereafter be able to enrich our reports by extracts from theirs.
Respecting ourselves, we would state that we have kept no exact account of the distributions that have been made of our tracts. Between two and three hundred have been given away, of those published in former years. By the generosity of an individual of Providence, your committee were enabled the last spring to republish, in an edition of one thousand copies, the essay of Jonathan Dymond, on "the applicability of the pacific principles of the New Testa- ment to the conduct of States; and on the limitations which those principles impose on the rights of self-defence." It is the seventh tract issued by the London Society, and is one of the best that has been issued upon the subject, either in that country or this. We have parted with more than eight hundred copies of it to individuals and to sister societies. We would take this opportunity to introduce to the notice of the public more of the excellent works of this author. Two octavo volumes of "Essays on the Principles of Morality, by Jonathan Dymond," have gone through a second edition in London, but are scarcely known in this country. We respect
fully commend them to all the friends of education, and of Christ, as deserving a higher place in all our seminaries of learning, than any other system of morality with which we are acquainted. In our view it is a desideratum that Paley's Moral Philosophy should no longer be used as a text book. His doctrine of Expediency is subversive of evangelical godliness. The only question with a Christian should be, in any and every instance of duty, what do the precepts of Christ require me to do or forbear? And this is the basis of Mr. Dymond's system. He has refuted Paley's Doctrine of Expediency, we think, with singular ability.
Our semi-annual meeting at Ashford was well attended. Twenty-one gentlemen, not members of the Society, expressed so far their interest in our cause as to subscribe their names to the memorial to congress, which was then in preparation. But the friends
of peace in this country, as well as in England, have since concluded, that the time has not yet arrived to pursue this particular measure.
But the time we devoutly trust is not a great way off, when the rulers of Christian nations will be brought to feel that it is their duty to devise some other mode of adjusting national disputes than the appeal to arms. The progress of truth on this, as on every subject, may not always be rapid; but it is always sure. Men may not receive it at once, but they cannot refuse it for ever. Truth may be impeded, but it will never cease to spread; it may be corrupted, but it will in time purify itself from error. It may be ridiculed, but it cannot be made contemptible. It may meet with determined foes, but it will finally prevail, and triumph gloriously.
VOL. VIII, NEW SERIES..
ORIGINAL COMMUNICATIONS, EXTRACTS, &c.
Extracts from a Sermon preached before the Windham County Peace Society. By EZRA B. KELLOGG, a Clergyman of the Episcopal Church, in the Diocess of Connecticut.
"But he turned and rebuked them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye
are of. For the Son of man is not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them."-Luke ix. 55, 56,
THE sentiments we imbibe in early life, whether they be right or wrong, are not easily eradicated; and especially if strengthened by the concurrence of popular opinion, they naturally exercise a controlling influence over the spirit and conduct.
The disciples of Jesus appear to have imbibed, in its full extent, the principle of retaliation common to their countrymen. The operation of this principle sometimes discovered itself in the disciples, and most strikingly so on the following occasion. Their Master, on his way to Jerusalem, was refused admittance into a certain village of the Samaritans. Stung with this refusal, they come with burning hearts to Jesus, and ask permission of him to "call down fire from heaven" and consume the whole village, with its inhabitants. These were the daily companions of our meek Redeemer these the men, who honestly supposed they understood the object of his mission, and had really participated of the same spirit which was in him. But he corrects them; he rebukes them. He shows them at once, that, in these particulars, they were every way entirely and totally mistaken." Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of. For the Son of man is not come to destroy men's lives, but to save them." We, like the disciples, profess to be the followers of Christ, and are named after his name; but is it not possible that we may have imbibed those principles and that spirit which our Lord condemned in them? When we look
abroad over the world, we discover a
As we have been called to speak of this, on the present occasion, it shall be our care not to deal in the exaggerated language of detraction, but to speak of it soberly and truly as it is. We are all too well acquainted with its effects to need a particular description.
We have heard of countries devastated, fields flowing with blood, and rivers literally reddened with human
We have been told by the historian, that, in the single battle of Borodino,
eighty thousand human beings perished." We have heard of peaceful cottages, rural mansions, populous towns, and mighty cities, reduced to ashes.
We are aware that widows and orphans are multiplied by it, innocent women violated, old people often deprived in their sons of their last support, the unoffending poor robbed of all their little hard-earned substance, the venerable temples of religion and science rifled and demolished, the flocks scattered, the harvests trampled, want, famine and disease often superinduced, and a torrent of wretchedness thus poured upon the life of mortals. These we do know to be the fruits of war, if not in all, yet in most countries, and in all ages.
But we must not overlook the spirit which predominates in the breast of him who lends a willing hand in the production of these calamities. We say nothing of those who are actuated by an ambition for conquest, or mili tary fame, but we enquire after the spirit of that man, who fights in a cause which of all others would be deemed the most justifiable. What is the principle by which he is governed? We confidently ask, is it not to do all
Extracts from a Sermon preached before the Windham Peace Society. 483
possible injury to his enemy? When he sees his companions, perhaps a dear relative, fall by his side, does not his soul burn for vengeance? Does he not demand blood for blood, do his endeavour to obtain it, and, in the height of his resentment, would he not gladly call down fire from heaven, if he could, to consume his adversaries? Surely it can hardly be thought that the dreadful business of killing human beings can be entered upon and prosecuted, without the exercise of those malignant passions which are suited to the work. But, were a man capable of doing this without emotion, it would argue an, almost inconceivable depravity. Place. a man's life in jeopardy, let him see the bristling of the bayonet pointed and designed for his own bowels, and ready to send him into the eternal world, and you beget in him at once a total disregard for the lives of others, and fill him with all the maddening and furious passions which can agitate the soul.
Casting but one look more at our world, we see professed Christians voluntarily hiring themselves to do deeds of blood. Nay, we even see fathers choosing war as the profession of their sons, and thus obligating them in one sense (should the chance of war so order it) to gain their bread by destroying their fellow creatures! We hope that we do nothing more than represent this matter truly, though perhaps in plainer language than common. And to crown the whole, these things are deemed in certain cases justifiable, and reconcileable with the Gospel of Christ.
Now, if indeed war and its attendant evils, together with the spirit by which it is begotten and accompanied, are in any case justifiable, and can be reconciled with the Gospel, then it is folly, and worse than folly, to start an objection against it. If, on the other hand, war is found to be contrary to the Gospel, then ought we to say many things; and this fact once ascer
tained, ought for ever to settle this question in the mind of every Christian: for the Gospel is the sovereign law of Christians, the supreme regulator of our faith, the infallible rule. which God has given us to distinguish right from wrong.
How then are we to determine. whether the Gospel does or does not countenance this custom? Certainly by a direct appeal to it. To the Gospel then let us go, and if we can find where the truth lies, like honest, men may we receive and follow it. But before we proceed to this examination, it may be thought that we ought to notice those particulars in the Bible, which appear to justify the practice in question. This then we will now do.
[The Author here considers the objections urged from the Jewish wars against the Canaanites, John the Baptist's address to the soldiers, the case of Cornelius, &c. These objections have been so often replied to in our pages, that it is unnecessary to notice them in this place.]
We come now to test the truth of the sentiment, that war in certain cases is reconcilable with the spirit of Christ's Gospel..
To ascertain whether this be so, look first at the example of Christ. When the soldiers were sent to take him, that he might be nailed on the cross, and die the most cruel of all deaths, and when he might have struck them dead by one word of his mouth, or called " more than twelve legions of angels" to his rescue, he did not thus avenge himself upon these sinners, even in self-defence. But what did he do? He verified the truth of the text- I came not to destroy men's lives, but to save them."* And when
Peter, acting under the impulse of vindictive feelings, smote off the ear of the high priest's servant, he was severely rebuked by his Master :Put up thy sword into the sheath; they that take the sword shall perish by the sword." To die a sudden and violent death by the sword, is justly regarded as a calamity and a judgment from God. And so great was the crime, in the eyes of the holy Jesus, of shedding man's blood by means of this instrument, that he here takes occasion, in a general manner, to denounce this judgment against those who so use it. How awfully this his prediction has been fulfilled since the day he spoke it, the blood and death of millions will testify.
When arraigned at the tribunal of Pilate, who interrogated him concerning the nature of his kingdom, he replied, "If my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews; but now is my kingdom not from hence." As if he had said, My kingdom is not an earthly, but a spiritual and heavenly one; hence it does not become my servants, who are the children of this kingdom, to fight and war; for "to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace." ." If it had been lawful for my servants to fight, then had I
not restrained but commanded them to fight, that I might not have been delivered to the Jews.
When reviled, derided, spit upon,
posed to refer, describe not only his suffering, but also the manner in which it became him to suffer: "He was led as a sheep to the slaughter, and as a lamb before his shearers is dumb, so opened he not his mouth. In his humiliation," &c. Had he not suffered in this way, he had not fulfilled the Scriptures: and had not his conduct in these trying circumstances been designed for our imitation, the Apostle would not have said, in reference to it, "Christ also suffered for
us, leaving us an example that ye should follow his steps; who when he was reviled, reviled not again, when he suffered he threatened not, but committed himself," &c. 1Pet. ii. 21-23.
buffeted, crowned with thorns, and smitten on the head, did he return "evil for evil, or railing for railing?" "He was led as a sheep to the slaughter, and like a lamb dumb before his shearers, so opened he not his mouth."
When he hung suspended on the cruel spikes, and his enemies passed by him, exulting over his dying ago. nies, wagging their heads, and mocking at his misery; he did not curse them in the bitterness of his spirit. O no, he kindly prayed—" Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do." How unlike was this, how unlike the stabbing of the fatal dagger into the vitals of an enemy, for any cause whatever! This, Christian, was making intercession for the transgressors, and it was found a prevailing prayer. Happy for his murderers that your Redeemer possessed not their spirit. In whatever circumstances he was placed (and he was placed in more trying ones than fall to the common lot of man) his example was always the same, meek, forgiving, and directly opposed to that haughty and revengeful spirit, which seeks to return injury for injury, and which sometimes cannot be satisfied with any atonement short of another's blood.
We have now shown you how little the injurious spirit of warfare is countenanced by the example of Christ.
Look next at some of his precepts. "Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth. But I say unto that you, ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also." Now where is the concord between this language, and the language of war? Does not the latter say, if ye are smitten, smite again? Let no one delude himself with the idea that the above precept (or others which we may bring of the same character) was designed only for individuals, and not applicable to nations; for be it remembered, that God has not given us one code for the government of nations, and another for
individuals; but as nations are .composed of individuals, he has left but one and the same code for the government of both, and both are equally bound by its moral injunctions. Carrying this reflection with us, let us hear what our Redeemer hath further spoken.
Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you; do good to them that hate you; and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: For he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good; and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust."
Here then, is enjoined upon us the positive duty of returning every possible good, for every possible injury we can receive. And this is urged on the ground that we may be the children of God. How absolutely it proscribes the doctrine of retaliation, which is the doctrine of war, it is unnecessary for us to say.
Not to weary you with quotations from one source, I will notice but a single precept more from the lips of our beloved Lord; and I appeal to the heart and judgment of every man who hears me, whether it would be possible for him to obey this precept, were he actively engaged on the field of battle, supporting the part essential to the reputation of a valiant soldier. "As ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise." Now it is evident that a business which places a man in a situation where he cannot act without breaking the law of his God, must be an unlawful, an unjustifiable business. In the common concerns of life, this principle is universally admitted: and no good reason can be given why it should not be admitted in every other instance.
But lest it should be thought that we have mistaken the doctrine of Jesus on this subject, let us enquire
how his own immediate disciples understood him.
"From whence come wars and fightings among you? (saith James) Come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members?" The lusts here spoken of are used throughout the whole New Testament to denote our sinful propensities. As though he had said-wars and fightings originate in sin, and of course are sinful, hence they cannot be acceptable in the eyes of a holy God. About the time, in which St. James wrote, we find, according to the accounts given by Josephus, that "the Jews, under pretence of defending their religion and procuring their liberty, made various incursions in Judea against the Romans, which occasioned much bloodshed and misery to their nation." These are probably the "wars and fightings," to which he alludes; and he here takes the occasion to warn the Christians of his day against taking part in these, as being contrary to their religion.
But he reprobates the spirit which begets and accompanies them, in still stronger language. "If ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth; this wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish."
Once more from this disciple. "He that said do not commit adultery, said also, do not kill. Now if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the law." Perhaps it may be thought that this prohibition was aimed at the private destruction of innocent persons. do not doubt it, but as we are told that no Scripture is of "private interpretation," and as the command. kill" stands unlimited, why is it not equally aimed at the public destruction of the innocent? And such, it will be conceded, are the great majority of those who fall in battle. If this reasoning then be correct, we here find in war, a notable transgressor of God's law.