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    May 1888

    “Front Page” American Sentinel 3, 5.

    E. J. Waggoner

    The military authorities of France have recently issued stringent orders regarding the observance of Sunday, and an officer who called out his men to practice on that day, was sentenced to the penal colony of New Caledonia. This the Christian Nation uses as an example which it would be wise for these United States to follow. That is to say that the United States should adopt the principles of the Papacy to the extent that France carries them forth. It will probably be done.AMS May 1888, page 33.1

    Since the Elgin Sunday-law Convention, the Illinois preachers have been enlarging their field of operations. They have issued four petitions: One to the United States Senate, one to the House of Representatives, one each to the railroad and the telegraph companies in the United States, asking for their co-operation. One of their circulars says:-AMS May 1888, page 33.2

    “God’s trumpet-call to every minister of the gospel, to every Christian and patriotic man and woman, and the public press in these United States, is that they ‘advance along the line’ against this giant sin of Sabbath [Sunday] desecration, which is sapping the foundations of our republican institutions.”AMS May 1888, page 33.3

    If there is anything in this world that is sapping the foundations of our republican institutions more than is this movement of the churches to wield the power of the State, then we wish somebody would name it. There ought to be a million copies of the March Sentinel distributed at once in Illinois, and ten millions throughout the country besides; it shows what these Illinois preachers are up to, and what will come of it.AMS May 1888, page 33.4

    “The California Church and State Convention” American Sentinel 3, 5.

    E. J. Waggoner

    The California State Prohibition Convention was held in San Francisco the first week in April. The first words of its platform were these:-AMS May 1888, page 33.5

    “The Prohibition party of the State of California in convention assembled, reverently recognize Almighty God as the supreme ruler, to whose laws all human laws should conform.”AMS May 1888, page 33.6

    The seventh plank in its platform is this:-AMS May 1888, page 33.7

    “We declare that Sunday is an institution so interwoven into our laws, our customs, our civilization, and the very structure of our Government, so intricately and beneficently connected with our social, business, and moral life, that we cannot dispense with it without sacrificing the very best interests of the country and the highest welfare of the whole people. And so believing, we demand the enactment and enforcement of an intelligent and rational Sunday law.”AMS May 1888, page 33.8

    The discussion of these two parts of the platform is of interest to those who are watching the growth of religion as a power in politics. We quote from the published report:-AMS May 1888, page 33.9

    “The first section being read, about twenty delegates jumped to their feet for recognition. One clerical gentleman, with long gray hair, and wearing glasses, made a long address in which he mixed up religion and politics, declaring that the party ought to recognize the Young Men’s Christian Association and the Women’s Christian Temperance Union, and that pre-eminently the convention ought to adopt the reverential section addressed to the Almighty.AMS May 1888, page 33.10

    “Mr. Robinson, of Sonoma County, wanted to stop and calmly consider the fact that the gentlemen of the Republican party did not lug religion into their platform. It was unwise to do anything to bring about a conflict of religious opinion. He believed that God Almighty cared little for compliments to him passed by a Prohibition convention. The speaker objected to bringing in the Church and State.AMS May 1888, page 33.11

    “Before he could proceed further the speaker was greeted by shouts of, ‘No, no!’ yells and hisses.AMS May 1888, page 33.12

    “The chairman shouted, ‘Time, time!’ and hit the desk vigorously with his gavel.AMS May 1888, page 33.13

    “Mr. Robinson, having by this time caught his second wind, made a motion to strike out the section recognizing God in the platform.AMS May 1888, page 33.14

    “Another howl of indignation arose from the opposition, who were greatly in the majority, while amendments and amendments to those again were offered, and the matter became so twisted up that the convention hardly knew where it stood. The original question being finally put, the entire first section, with the objectionable recognition of the Deity, was carried, there being only two or three opposing votes.”AMS May 1888, page 33.15

    “When the seventh section was read Dr. Yarnell, of Los Angeles, moved to amend by striking out the word ‘Sunday’ and substituting ‘Sabbath.’AMS May 1888, page 33.16

    “Mr. Robinson, of Sonoma, who seemed to have as clear an idea of business and dispatch as any member of the convention, again bobbed up and said that the motion was only recurring on the question of Church and State. He moved to strike out everything relating to Sunday.AMS May 1888, page 33.17

    “Dr. Calhoun, of San Jose, threw himself into the breach and declared that Sunday was not an institution, while the Sabbath was. By using that term you used none that was objectionable to anyone. The reverend gentleman then went back 1,800 years and began an argument on religion in general.AMS May 1888, page 33.18

    “Miller, of Los Angeles, moved to lay the amendments on the table. After argument had been going on for ten minutes the chair ruled the question was not debatable.AMS May 1888, page 33.19

    “Judge Bourne, of San Bernardino, cut the Gordian knot by offering an amendment that nothing in the platform interfere with the religious observance of Sabbath by Christians if so disposed.AMS May 1888, page 33.20

    “One member objected to the motion because it would cut off Hebrews.AMS May 1888, page 33.21

    “Henry French, of San Jose, declared that he wanted to put himself on record right here, and say that he would not live in a country where there was no Sunday; he’d rather go to the Fiji Islands first. Shut up the saloons from Saturday night until Monday morning and they would soon be compelled to close up entirely.AMS May 1888, page 33.22

    “Judge Elliot, of Stockton, said that if the party went into the campaign with the Sunday plank in the platform, they would have to pass half the time in convincing the people that it was not a religious movement.AMS May 1888, page 33.23

    “After half an hour of debate, Judge Bourne’s amendment was lost by a vote of 73 to 84.AMS May 1888, page 33.24

    “The original resolution as presented in the platform originally was adopted.”AMS May 1888, page 33.25

    This we insert not so much for comment at this time, as for the purpose of setting before our readers a view of the rising of the evil tide which the Sentinel has been pointing out now for nearly three years. When opposition to Church and State is met in a Prohibition or any other sort of a convention with, “No, no, yells and hisses,” then such convention ought to be condemned by every man who has any regard for civil and religious liberty, for human right, or for purity in either politics or religion. This is more than “a straw” showing which way the religio-political wind is blowing. The Church and State party is now the proper name for the Prohibition party of California.AMS May 1888, page 33.26

    “An Alarm Needed” American Sentinel 3, 5.

    E. J. Waggoner

    In the March Sentinel we made an extended quotation from the Christian Union, of which the following is the most important portion:AMS May 1888, page 37.1

    “It is not impossible that the time may come when the old antagonism of the Catholic and the Protestant may appear insignificant in view of the deeper antagonisms which shall make them essentially one... It is quite possible that the time may come when the real issue will be between the theist and atheist; the man who believe in God, and order, and freedom, and rights of person and property, on the one side, and the man who disbelieves in all these, on the other side. Whenever that time comes the Protestant and the Catholic will stand side by side in a common defense of those common beliefs which have been their mutual possessions these many centuries. Stranger things have happened in history than such a change of attitude as would be involved in the fellowship of the Roman Catholic and the Protestant.”AMS May 1888, page 37.2

    This quotation is only one of many similar utterances, and as we showed in that number of the Sentinel is nothing but the preparation for Church and State union, because that is the one distinctive feature of the Roman Catholic Church.AMS May 1888, page 37.3

    But the Christian Union does not profess to follow denominational lines very closely, and therefore it may be thought that its utterance does not in any degree represent the drift of modern Protestantism. Accordingly we present another statement very similar to the above. The Rev. Dr. Henry M. Field, editor of the New York Evangelist (Presbyterian) said in a recent issue of his paper:-AMS May 1888, page 37.4

    “The late President Hitchcock often said to us, when we discussed the dangers to society from socialists and communists, that we might yet come to look upon the Roman Catholic Church as the most conservative power in the country, if, by its influence over the Irish, it should keep them from running into the excesses by which so many of the French and Germans were carried away. It is conservative also in preserving the name of Christendom against the great flood of infidelity which is sweeping over the land. Here is a tremendous power exercised by the Roman Catholic Church over millions of our countrymen, and it is the height of folly and fanaticism to alienate it from us by standing always in an attitude of antagonism.”AMS May 1888, page 37.5

    And an Episcopalian clergyman of Central New York wrote as follows to Dr. Field:-AMS May 1888, page 38.1

    “I do want to thank you for what you say about the treatment of Roman Catholics. How vastly better than infidelity is that church, and what a check it is to the same! Surely God is in it.”AMS May 1888, page 38.2

    Such an expression from a representative of the Episcopal Church ought not to occasion any surprise, for there are many prominent members of that denomination who are desirous that it should be known as the American Catholic Church; but when so prominent a Presbyterian as Dr. Field comes out in favor of an alliance with Roman Catholicism, it is very significant. And what Dr. Field says is but an echo of the opinions held by Dr. Hitchcock, of the Union Theological Seminary, and Drs. Hodge and Patton, of Princeton College, both strongholds of Presbyterianism.AMS May 1888, page 38.3

    From a report in the Congregationalist of April 5, we take the following, which is perhaps even more significant than the statements above quoted; it appeared in that paper under the heading, “Observance of Holy Week.”-AMS May 1888, page 38.4

    “Probably more Congregational Churches than ever before, marked the eventful days of last week, either at their regular services, or with special meetings.AMS May 1888, page 38.5

    “In Lowell, the John Street Church was open every afternoon, and Rev. H.T. Rose gave a brief address, many coming from other churches to listen, and to share in the worship. The churches of Salem united on Good Friday in a communion service at the Crombie Street Church, Rev. L.B. Voorhees preaching.AMS May 1888, page 38.6

    “A remarkable series of discourses was given in Worcester at the union meetings of the Central Church and St. John Episcopal, each house of worship being alternately used. The preachers we were Drs. Merriman, Tucker, Herrick, and Phillips Brooks. These union meetings continuing through Lent, have fostered the spirit of unity, and desire for aggressive work.AMS May 1888, page 38.7

    “As last year, union services were held in Pittsfield every noon, for half an hour, in the First Church, only one clergyman being in the pulpit, and the exercises consisting of prayer, hymns, a scripture reading covering the incidents of the day, and a few fitting words. The congregation united in the Apostles’ Creed and the Lord’s Prayer. On Good Friday the service, ‘The Watch on the Cross,’ was held at St. Stephen’s Church from twelve till three o’clock, being conducted by Rector W.W. Newton. Each of the other evangelical clergymen of the town spoke briefly on one of the seven words of the cross. The services have had a meditative and strength-giving character, and the yearly observance of the week is now a settled thing.AMS May 1888, page 38.8

    “The observance was more general than ever in Hartford. The Asylum Hill and South Churches each held daily services at 5 p.m. The Center, Park, and Pearl Street churches held union services for five evenings. At the Fourth Church the annual week-night communion service was held. Dr. Stainer’s ‘Passion Music’ was rendered at the Good Friday service in the South Church.”AMS May 1888, page 38.9

    These things show a strong and increasing tendency among the professed Protestants to obliterate all seeming differences between them and the Catholic Church, so that there may be complete “Christian union.” Perhaps some may not have thought of the fact, but it is a fact, that this is off from the same piece as National Reform. We have often stated, and wish to emphasize the statement, that the American Sentinel is not simply opposing what is known as the National Reform Association, but is uncompromisingly opposed to everything tending toward a union of Church and State, or to a curtailment of civil or religious freedom. We do not believe that the National Reform Association alone could in a hundred years so influence public sentiment as to secure the ends which it seeks; but that Association is only one of the many agencies at work to destroy all that is distinctive about Protestantism. The regular National Reformers have already committed themselves to union with Roman Catholics, by stating that in a world’s Christian convention many countries could be represented only by Catholics, and that they would have no objection to having the Catholic Bible and Catholic instruction in the public schools where Catholics are in the majority. The Prohibition party in many States is fully committed to laws enforcing religion; the Women’s Christian Temperance Union has indorsed the work of the National Reform Association; the Catholic Church exists in the foundation of Church and State; and the Protestant churches are courting the Catholic Church. Surely there is need enough for an alarm to be sounded.AMS May 1888, page 38.10


    “Sunday-Law Fallacies Exposed” American Sentinel 3, 5.

    E. J. Waggoner

    The Cincinnati Commercial Gazette of March 10 makes some good points against the advocates of civil statutes to enforce the observance of Sunday, or, as they call it, Sabbath. The article is too long to print entire, but we insert the main points, that expose the sophistry of those political religionists who propose to enforce religious observances under cover of civil statutes; and who propose to carry civil government into the realm of morals, or rather propose to reduce the moral law to a level with civil statutes, and to give to the law of God the sanction of civil enactments.AMS May 1888, page 39.1

    “Separated from the Creator’s seventh day of rest, the Sabbath commandment would be separated from its foundation and meaning. Has Jehovah repealed the seventh-day commandment? If so, let the repealing word be shown. Can man repeal it? Can man shift Jehovah’s law from the seventh to the first day? Can he say that the story of the six days’ work of creation is a myth of an ignorant people, and that God did no corporal work, and was not tired, and that creation may have been evolution through millions of years, and that the essence of the commandment is that one day in seven, or one-seventh of the time, shall be a day of cessation from the ordinary vocations?AMS May 1888, page 39.2

    “A letter in the Commercial Gazette of the 6th, laying down the standards of the Presbyterian Church, and warning this paper against ‘leaving the sphere of the secular and entering the arena of the religious,’ shows that that church has repealed the seventh-day commandment, and has re-enacted it for the first day, whereby it has created the sin of Sabbath-breaking on the first day. No prudent person can wish to enter the ‘religious arena’ to deny that the Presbyterian Church can repeal the law of God, and can enact a law to create new sins. But such repeal and enactment are binding only on Presbyterians, and cannot be made the ground of State statutes. As to the ‘religious arena,’ the newspaper province extends over all that concerns mankind. It recognizes no taboo.AMS May 1888, page 39.3

    “The consciousness that the separation of the commandment from its foundation in the Creator’s rest day, abandons all foundation for a day of holy time, and all foundation for a moral or civil code which makes sins of things on one day which are not sins on other days, is that which makes good people cling to a part of the commandment, and try to enforce it on Sunday, after they have abolished it as to the Sabbath day. In this they fly from the commandment to the argument of man’s welfare-which cuts loose from the commandment-and then they fly from the argument of man’s liberty in his welfare, to the commandment of holy time which they have repealed.AMS May 1888, page 39.4

    “The matter of inhibition from work, for the relief of the toilers, is one thing. The Sabbath commandment of Jehovah’s holy day is another thing. The argument of man’s welfare makes man free to adapt the inhibition to his welfare. But man may not adapt Jehovah’s seventh-day Sabbath law to his idea of his own welfare. If that commandment stands, it is for the day it commands. It is a law or it is not. It is no fast-and-loose law...AMS May 1888, page 39.5

    “They declare Sunday the moral ruin of the people. They prove it by alleged statistics of criminal prosecutions to show that more crimes of violence are committed on Sunday than on all other days of the week. Why is this? Because the saloons are open? They are open on other days. This reduces them to the sole reason that it is because it is a day of idleness.AMS May 1888, page 39.6

    “Their argument is absolutely destructive to the beneficence of the custom of a rest day. They continually affirm that a Sabbath day is the very foundation of religion, morals, and society, and they as incessantly declare that the custom of Sunday cessation from work in the cities has made it a day of moral ruin. What is their recourse from the destruction which they charge upon the day of idleness? To make statutes more stringent to enforce idleness. Arguing that idleness on that day leads mankind to moral ruin, they call for a more rigid enforcement of idleness, to lead mankind to the ways of salvation.AMS May 1888, page 39.7

    “Surely there is need to revise their basis in season before they can proceed rationally in legislation. Selling beer is no more a sin on Sun-day than on other days. The reason why more crimes of violence are done on Sunday than on other days-if that is a fact-is not that the saloons are open, but that men are idle. The good of a day of rest for the toilers has to be taken with the drawback of this unavoidable evil from idleness and indulgence of the appetites. The cause is the cessation of vocations. The attempt to close the saloons is a diversion from the true cause, and is a vain attempt to deal with one of the effects.AMS May 1888, page 39.8

    “Moral laws must have a foundation of truth, or they will make no headway. The attempt to found Sunday laws or Sunday observance on the Sabbath commandment is to give them a false bottom. The affirmation of the Sabbath law as binding on the conscience on Sunday, as a reason for Sunday statutes, while disclaiming any desire to enforce religious observance by statute, is crooked. The pretense that the saloons are the cause of the crimes of the day of idleness, is not true. Still, there is an eternal power in truth, which will bring to naught all statutes and moral causes which reject truth from the foundation, and try to build upon false assumptions.”AMS May 1888, page 39.9

    “Back Page” American Sentinel 3, 5.

    E. J. Waggoner

    It is reported in the religious press that a great revival is progressing in Tokio, Japan, with no fewer than five hundred conversions in a single month. One religious journal, in noting the wonderful revival, and how recently the country was wholly pagan, says: “Everybody is interested in Christianity, and nobody speaks against it.” Well, then, we fear that Christianity is in a bad condition in Japan. Christ said: “Woe unto you, when all men shall speak well of you! for so did their fathers to the false prophets.” When the Christians were only “a sect” that was everywhere spoken against, Christianity was pure and undefiled; but when Constantine elevated Christianity to the throne of the world, and nobody spoke against it, but men found that they gained popularity by accepting it, then real Christianity fled, and “that wicked” took its place. We do not believe Christ’s words have any less application to-day than they had eighteen hundred years ago.AMS May 1888, page 40.1

    Not long ago the religious journals of New York were very active in working for the Saturday half-holiday. Now the bank superintendent of the State, in his report to the Legislature, has recommended that the law be so amended as to be limited in its operations to July and August, during which months business in the cities is usually suspended on Saturday afternoons; and the Independent says that “a better recommendation would have been a total repeal of the law altogether.” It truthfully adds:-AMS May 1888, page 40.2

    “The truth is, that the law is really of no service to anybody. The design of the Legislature in passing it was simply to humbug the working people, by seeming to do something for them, when in fact doing nothing except to their injury.”AMS May 1888, page 40.3

    And that is just the case with all Sunday legislation. If the workingmen allow the Sunday-law advocates to humbug them into thinking that the object of Sunday laws is to benefit them, they will find out the contrary to their sorrow when it is too late to remedy the matter.AMS May 1888, page 40.4

    In a recent address before the Young Women’s Christian Temperance Union in Oakland, Rev. Dr. Horton stated that he had been credibly in-formed that during this Lenten season there were many families which gave their children wine in the place of meat, and said that teachers in certain schools complained that those children became utterly unmanageable in consequence. Was there ever a worse exhibition of straining out a gnat and swallowing a camel? We believe Lent is a period of time devoted to the mortification of the flesh! “The church” forbids the use of meat during that time, so that the body may be kept under; and these people, who would think it almost a mortal sin to disobey the church in this regard, give their children (and undoubtedly themselves also) wine, which is ten times worse than meat could be. This is a fair sample of the working of a religion that is fixed by law; formalism at the expense of piety must always be the result.AMS May 1888, page 40.5

    We have received from the editor of the Herold der Wahrheit a translation of a part of the remarks of the prosecuting attorney of the city of Cassel, Germany, in the case of the Rev. Thummel, who was indicted for attacking the Papacy and calling the Pope antichrist. In moving for nine months’ imprisonment for Thummel, and two months’ imprisonment for the publisher of the article, the prosecuting attorney said, among other things:-AMS May 1888, page 40.6

    “The defendant refers (or appeals) to Dr. M. Luther. First, it must be considered that Luther lived three hundred years ago, and that meanwhile the customs, the tone, and tastes, etc., have changed. If Luther lived today, and should say and write the same things that he did then, he would undoubtedly, by reason of section 166 of the Penal Code, be condemned.”AMS May 1888, page 40.7

    Undoubtedly; and this is in a city where the majority of the churches today are Lutheran. If a man should be condemned now for using language similar to that which Luther used three hundred years ago, then he ought to have been condemned then, for it is Rome’s boast that she never changes. If Luther were alive today he would undoubtedly say the same things about the Catholic Church that he said in the days of Leo X., and would include many professed Protestants in his remarks. Fortunately there are some still who are animated by the same spirit that Luther was, and who do not flatter the Pope simply because his power is increasing.AMS May 1888, page 40.8

    “A Deserved Rebuke” American Sentinel 3, 5.

    E. J. Waggoner

    In the latter part of March, the Methodist Episcopal Conference of Kansas adopted resolutions refusing to support any political party that will not agree to play into their hands. The Interior (Presbyterian) administers a just and deserved rebuke, which we here insert, not only for the good in the matter itself, but also as another evidence of the rapid growth of Church and State ideas. We ask, for the weighty words of the Interior, the careful consideration that is their due.AMS May 1888, page 40.9

    “The Methodist conference for Kansas, at its meeting in Topeka last week, passed resolutions demanding national prohibition and refusing to support any political party which does not stand squarely upon their platform. They demanded: 1. That the United States shall not issue permits to sell liquor in any State unless the same be countersigned by the State authorities. 2. Prohibition in the District of Columbia, the Territories, etc. 3. The importation of liquors into any State to be by the consent of the State. 4. A prohibitory amendment to the Constitution of the United States.AMS May 1888, page 40.10

    “Just what the practical effect of these provisions might be, it is not safe to undertake in advance to determine. But the purpose of these brethren was to put down the liquor traffic, and therefore it was a righteous purpose. But we would not like to have our presbytery or assembly pledge our church to the defeat of any political party not committed to these particular measures. We would not like to have our church committed to a war of extermination upon the Republican party or the Democratic party. As the clause in our Confession forbidding the church to meddle with civil affairs is now under scrutiny, the action of the Methodist conference affords a very good illustration.AMS May 1888, page 40.11

    “Let us suppose, now, that the Methodist Episcopal Church, which at the North, we may say, is pretty nearly solidly Republican, should receive and obey a mandate from its general conference to vote against the Republican party—that would defeat that party. There are over 100,000 offices and over a thousand millions of treasure dependent upon that stake. Can a church have the awarding of such political spoils to one or another political party and remain morally pure? No reasonable man will believe it. Nothing has yet been seen in history in the way of ecclesiastical corruption that would compare with the horrible mixture of cant and rascality that would follow. This shows that, however attractive from a moral standpoint ecclesiastico-political action may be, it is in the highest degree perilous. In forbidding it our Confession of Faith deals with principles of religion and morality that are unchangeable and decisive.”AMS May 1888, page 40.12

    It is stated that Colorado has great hopes of becoming the tobacco-producing district of this country, careful experiments having determined that many varieties of tobacco will yield enormous crops upon its soil. The Oakland Times says:—AMS May 1888, page 40.13

    “If Colorado cannot produce the requisite soil and climate, it could certainly be found in California. With our vast domain it is ridiculous that we should still be spending eight to ten millions of dollars per year in buying the weed from Cuba and Sumatra.”AMS May 1888, page 40.14

    We should say that if Californians must use eight to ten million dollars’ worth of tobacco every year, it will be vastly cheaper to import it than to ruin good land in producing it. It is well known that there is nothing that grows that exhausts the soil so much as tobacco. Much good land in Connecticut and Virginia has been rendered unfit for use, because it has been devoted to tobacco-raising. Tobacco has only one mission, and that is, to kill, and it does that effectually, whether applied to the land, to men, or to pestiferous vermin.AMS May 1888, page 40.15

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