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    May 18, 1899

    “Front Page” American Sentinel 14, 20, p. 303.


    NO GOVERNMENT can give securities which can be deposited in the bank of Heaven.AMS May 18, 1899, page 303.1

    WHEN coercion is joined with religion, many people are made hypocrites, but none are made Christians.AMS May 18, 1899, page 303.2

    A RELIGION which is joined with the State if a friend of the world, and therefore an enemy of God.AMS May 18, 1899, page 303.3

    HUMAN law cannot enter the realm of conscience without coming in conflict with the law of God.AMS May 18, 1899, page 303.4

    THE Sunday laws are based upon the decisions of majorities; but Christianity never rested on this basis.AMS May 18, 1899, page 303.5

    THE wisdom of man nowhere appears in more painful contrast with the wisdom of God than in the provisions of the Sunday laws.AMS May 18, 1899, page 303.6

    WHEN religion gets into politics, religious bigotry and intolerance disguise themselves in a political garb, and do their work in the name of political necessity.AMS May 18, 1899, page 303.7

    AMS MAN cannot create anything superior to himself, it is certain that the interests of civil government cannot be superior to those of the men who make it.AMS May 18, 1899, page 303.8

    AMS NO civil government ever yet loved its enemies, and as Christianity demands the love of one’s enemies, it is plain that civil government cannot rise to the level of Christianity.AMS May 18, 1899, page 303.9

    WHEN a civil government professes religion, it is logically bound to coerce dissenters from its religion, as it does dissenters from any of its laws; and to coerce dissenters in religion is to persecute.AMS May 18, 1899, page 303.10

    AMS IT is true that “out of the heart are the issues of life,” and as no human law can reach the heart, it is plainly true that human legislation is powerless to reform the life and save society from moral decay.AMS May 18, 1899, page 303.11

    “Sunday Enforcement in Georgia” American Sentinel 14, 20, pp. 303-305.


    HARDLY a week goes by that does not see the Sunday issue brought to the front in one State or another of this greatest of republican governments. North, south, east, and west, the agitation for Sunday enforcement is in progress, and he who will pause to consider the movement as a whole, will be deeply impressed with its significance.AMS May 18, 1899, page 303.1

    In Pennsylvania there is a union of the federation of churches, with the largest and most powerful workingmen’s association, which is making Sunday enforcement a leading issue there. In Michigan the legislature is considering the question of more stringent Sunday legislation; the same is true of Rhode Island; and now in Georgia, in the leading city of the State, a crusade is in progress for the strict enforcement of the existing Sunday laws. From the Atlanta Constitution we gather some noteworthy facts in connection with this crusade.AMS May 18, 1899, page 303.2

    In the Constitution of May 1st we note the following:—AMS May 18, 1899, page 303.3

    “The police yesterday made a swoop upon all classes, all colors, all businesses—big merchants, small dealers, ice cream peddlers, bootblacks, showmen, fruit venders, pop sellers,—and all were asked to show cause why they should not be fined in the recorder’s court for keeping open doors on the Sabbath. The sellers of cigars and tobacco, cigarettes, flowers, candy, fruit, groceries, and sundries were all told that they must appear in the police court this morning as defendants.AMS May 18, 1899, page 303.4

    “Fifty names were spread upon the police docket, making, with the regular run of business, the biggest Sunday’s work the police have ever done in Atlanta.AMS May 18, 1899, page 304.1

    “The city ordinance under which the police are working is as following:—AMS May 18, 1899, page 304.2

    “‘SECTION 722.—Any merchant, billiard-table, or ten-pin-alley keeper or other dealer who shall keep open doors on the Sabbath day for trade or traffic on that day, or any person who shall work or in anywise labor or cause work to be done on the Sabbath day (except it be work of necessity) shall be fined in a sum not exceeding $100 and costs or be imprisoned in the calaboose or common jail of said county not more than thirty days, in the discretion of the court; provided, that the mayor and general council may not punish for violating the State laws on the Sabbath day, and provided further, that the above shall not prevent the sale of soda water on the Sabbath day by those who may have paid for selling the same and who are entitled to keep open doors on the Sabbath day.’”AMS May 18, 1899, page 304.3

    The moving spirit which is behind this crusade means that it shall do thorough work, as is evident from the nature of some of the cases brought before the court. The Constitution notes that there were some “special cases,” and among these makes mention of this:—AMS May 18, 1899, page 304.4

    “Albert Thomas was arrested for driving his team faster than a walk while passing the First Methodist Church Sunday morning during services.”AMS May 18, 1899, page 304.5

    Also this:—AMS May 18, 1899, page 304.6

    “While the investigation was going on yesterday an officer saw a watchmaker engaged, as he thought, in repairing a watch on the Sabbath day. The matter was reported to the captain and a case was ordered. When a closer investigation was made it was ascertained that the watchmaker was assorting a lot of fish hooks preparatory to going fishing this morning. He was not disturbed, but he was the only lucky one in the whole batch of Sunday suspects.”AMS May 18, 1899, page 304.7

    These fifty cases were tried before the recorder the next morning, and all the defendants were found guilty, but were not fined, this being their “first offense.” The recorder let is be known that the Sunday law was henceforth not a dead letter, and would be strictly enforced. This decision, says the Constitution, “carries with it a revolution of the Sunday business in Atlanta.”AMS May 18, 1899, page 304.8

    No side shows in the parks are to be allowed on Sunday, and even the Sunday blacking of shoes by boot-blacks is made a crime.AMS May 18, 1899, page 304.9

    The arrests made included those of “two of the largest cigar and tobacco dealers in the city,” who, “with all other dealers, have been selling their goods on Sundays for many years without molestation.” With this is connected a peculiar though characteristic feature of Sunday legislation.AMS May 18, 1899, page 304.10

    These tobacco dealers were arrested not because they sold cigars and tobacco on Sunday; this is allowed by the law. The offense—the “desecration of the Sabbath”—as regards tobacco dealers, consists in the sale of other articles known as “tobacco dealers’ supplies,” in which are included such articles as canes and umbrellas. In Atlanta, the law prohibits the Sunday opening of tobacco stores where these “supplies” are kept in stock, so that a sale of them on Sunday would be possible. The tobacco dealers of the city, in view of this, have petitioned the mayor and city council for an amendment which will permit them to open shop “on the Sabbath day” for the sale of tobacco, “provided that they do not sell such canes and umbrellas on the Sabbath day.” It is thought this petition will be granted.AMS May 18, 1899, page 305.1

    We say this is characteristic of Sunday legislation, for the Sunday sale of tobacco is everywhere allowed by the Sunday laws, as an article of “necessity.”AMS May 18, 1899, page 305.2

    Why is the Sunday sale of tobacco considered a necessity? Is tobacco one of the necessaries of life?—No; for we know thousands of people who never touch it. We know people who were formerly addicted to its use who now get on much better without it; and we know of people to whom a “necessity” of life was that they discontinue its use. We read almost daily of people who are killed or seriously injured by tobacco indulgence. In the face of such facts no one can say there is any truth or reason back of the idea that tobacco is a necessity.AMS May 18, 1899, page 305.3

    Tobacco is considered a necessity by the Sunday laws simply because the use of tobacco is so nearly universal that the great majority of the people will not tolerate any restrictions upon its sale. They want their tobacco and they must have it, on Sunday as on any other day. The sale of other things may be restricted; but a restriction upon tobacco is an interference with appetite, and men will not tolerate an interference with appetite. And so public sentiment, upon which human law depends, will not permit any Sunday ban upon tobacco.AMS May 18, 1899, page 305.4

    And thus it comes that tobacco is permitted to be sold on Sundays as an article of necessity, while food and clothing are prohibited. A thing which is an injury to the human system, which never saves life but often destroys it, and which ministers only to appetite, is put by the Sunday laws above the food and clothing which really are necessaries of life, and the sale of which on Sunday night often contribute to the saving of life under various circumstances. And this is done in the name of Christianity—in the name of the “sanctity of the Sabbath”!AMS May 18, 1899, page 305.5

    Reader—if you happen to be a citizen of Georgia, or if you favor the Sunday laws, whether you live in Georgia or elsewhere—can you feel free to uphold such inconsistency in the name of your religion? Can you believe that a righteous God approves it? Can you not see, upon a candid examination of them, that the Sunday laws bear the stamp of the human—that there is stamped on them the inconsistency and injustice of fallen human nature, instead of the righteousness of the all-wise God?AMS May 18, 1899, page 305.6

    The Sabbath law of God—the fourth precept of the Decalogue—bears the stamp of the wisdom and justice of the infinite mind. Could there possibly be a better Sabbath law than that,—one better adapted to the conditions or human life? Ought not this law to be enforced in preference to any other that can be passed? And is not this Sabbath law actually in force to-day? Has not the Creator power to enforce his own law? and can any but divine power enforce a divine law?AMS May 18, 1899, page 305.1

    Where the wisdom of God is, where is there room for the wisdom of man? Where the power of God is, where is there room for the power of man? Where the Sabbath of God is, where is there room for the sabbath of man? And the Sabbath of the Lord is everywhere, even as far as the jurisdiction of his law extends.AMS May 18, 1899, page 305.2

    “True Christianity Forsaken” American Sentinel 14, 20, pp. 305, 306.


    SO CALLED good citizenship organizations and movements are increasing in number, and professed Christians and prominent clergymen are the most prominent in this work. For instance, Philadelphia has an “American Citizenship Alliance” which is providing lectures “in the various churches throughout the city.” The leading objects of this Citizenship Alliance are:—AMS May 18, 1899, page 305.1

    “1. To unite all religious and moral forces for the suppression of wrong and for building symmetrically our national life.AMS May 18, 1899, page 305.2

    “2. To inaugurate a system and to utilize existing forces for the promotion of this work.AMS May 18, 1899, page 305.3

    “3. To encourage intelligent observance of our national holidays.AMS May 18, 1899, page 305.4

    “4. To coöperate in all social, industrial, and civic improvements with other associations.”AMS May 18, 1899, page 305.5

    In Boston also lately a “Good Citizenship Society” was formed, and noon meetings are held in Tremont Temple to promote the interests of this society whose object is “the better organization of the world;” and one of the leading speakers is also a leading clergyman of New England.AMS May 18, 1899, page 305.6

    Now suppose that all of these professed Christians and professed ministers of the gospel should be completely successful in their work for the building up of “our national life” and thorough “observance of our national holidays,” and advance, to their ideal, “all social, industrial, and civic improvements,” and thus secure their object—“the better organization of the world”—what have they then accomplished in the fulfillment of their own proper mission to the world under the profession which they make of Christianity?AMS May 18, 1899, page 305.7

    Christianity is to call people from this world to the world to come. To be a Christian is to be separated completely from this world, to be chosen out of the world unto God. Christians belong to the other world. To accomplish this, and this alone, is the sole object of Christianity in this world. For this object alone Christ came into the world, insisting while he was here, “I am not of the world,” “My kingdom is not of this world.” For this purpose he commissioned the ministers of this gospel to go into the world and preach this gospel to every creature. For this purpose to his disciples, he says, “As my Father sent me even so send I you,” and of all his, it is written: “As he is so are we in this world,” and “Ye are not of the world even as I am not of the world;” “Ye are not of the world because I have chosen you out of the world.” His Word declares that this world is “the enemy of God,” and that “whosoever therefore will be the friend of the world is the enemy of God.” Such a loan is the object and work of true Christianity in this world.AMS May 18, 1899, page 305.8

    Now, in view of all this, when professed Christians and professed ministers of the gospel, having out of the other world, turn their attention to this world to the better organization of it, the building up of national life, the promotion of earthly citizenship, even though they were to attain in this their highest ideal, what would they have accomplished? None of this, for all of it together, prepares men for the other world. And while they are thus putting forth their endeavors in the interests altogether of this world, thousands of people are perishing all around them, simply because of their not having received the message which these people profess to bear: calling people from this world to the other world.AMS May 18, 1899, page 305.9

    It is perfectly plain, therefore, that nothing can show more plainly then these movements do, that all of these professed Christians and professed Christian ministers, have lost all their connection with the other world, with the message from the other world, which they profess to bear to this one; and are becoming in their aims, interests, and efforts, altogether of this world. And while these people professing to bear a message from the other world to this one, instead of delivering that message in its sincerity and in its power, forsake it and turned all their attention to this world, and to the things of this world, and to men’s interest only as they are in this world, what our men to do for the message which God sends from the other world, which Christ Jesus came to bring, and which poured out his life to make sure to the people of this world?AMS May 18, 1899, page 305.10

    This is not to say that the message of the gospel and the lives of true Christians in the world, will not benefit this world. This will supremely benefit the world if only Christianity is maintained in its true integrity and in strict loyalty to the other world. But when that is forsaken, or when it is neglected, or when an attempt is made to use it for the benefit of this world, every such effort only robs it of all its power to benefit this world, and deprives this world of that which belongs to it as a benefit from Christianity. The only benefit this world can ever receive from Christianity is by the lives of those who are true Christians and who, as true Christians, are individually separate from this world, as Christ was; and who live apart from, and above, the world, even as Jesus Christ did.AMS May 18, 1899, page 305.11

    A. T. J.

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