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That Christianity is now in a flourishing condition, in the outer court, is certain. The hosts that unite with religious societies, the many splendid houses that are built for Christian worship, and the immense sums that are raised to endow theological seminaries and send missionaries over sea and land, all substantiate the fact. Indeed, what is called religion, is now the most fashionable thing that can be named, through every grade of the community, from the venerable president of the Bible Society, down to the lisping child at Sunday School.

But the inner court presents nothing so flattering. There is but little likeness between the religion of the present day and that which prevailed in the prime of Christianity. Murders, robberies, fraud, drunkenness, dwellings, ambition for office, thirst for money and wealth, extravagance in praise, religious deception to collect money, etc., seem to keep pace with our population; so that a man, unbiased by any religious system, would conclude that there was as loud call for the Hindoos to send their missionaries among us, to reclaim us from these errors, as there is for us to send our missionaries among them, to turn them from idolatry and immolation.

The time of outward prosperity and inward depression of religion, is favorable for the introduction of customs and laws, which lead on to persecution and blood-shedding. The buddings of these begin to appear among us. Why line a Jew for opening his store on Sunday? Why stop travellers on the same day? Why have a law of Congress to stop the mail on the day that one part of the community think should be kept holy, when another part as honestly believe that another day is appointed by God, and a third and large party judge that every day is alike? In this diversity of sentiment, must Congress, or any uninspired legislature, decide the question—explain for certain the law of God, and punish all that disobey? If one individual has his own liberty guaranteed to him, why should he wish to have his neighbor deprived of the same? When two men meet in the road, what right has one more than the other to demand the whole path? None but tyrants desire it. For one man to make his own conscience the standard for another man's conduct, is cruel stupidity.

Some meeting-houses are built by legal taxation--some by a generous individual—but many are erected, like the one in which we are, by the combination of many; each contributing according to his pleasure. And, as the house is built on liberal principles, so, likewise, I am instructed to state, it is to be occupied in a free manner. No one who shall choose to attend, either constantly or transiently, will be considered an intruder in seating himself at pleasure. None will be compelled to come—none will be refused accommodation.

We congratulate the proprietors of this house, in completing it without the loss of life or limb. And surely your liberal views and helping hands

will meet with the praise of all the lovers of Jesus and lovers of freedom. Here you may be accommodated for life, and when you go the way of all the earth, your descendants may enjoy it as an inheritance. We hope your liberal exertions will ascend as a memorial to Him, for whose praise and glory the house was built, and that He will frequently send down his holy spirit on the people who assemble at this place. Why may we not pray for a heavenly blessing to-day? If it would be presumption for us to pray for the Holy Ghost, like a mighty rushing wind, to descend and fill this house, as it did the temple on the day of Pentecost, yet, surely, it can. not be arrogant or improper for us to pray that the spirit of the Lord might descend in its ordinary course, and not only fill the saints with joy, but turn sinners from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto the living God; for nothing appears more gloomy and preposterous, than to see a temple, built for the worship of God, filled with a lifeless preacher and an inattentive congregation. It is, therefore, ardently desired, that this congregation, whether they have a stated preacher, or only occasional supplies, may be visited by Him, who walks amidst the golden candlesticks, and holds the stars in his right hand. Our hearts rise with the pleasing anticipation that this house may be a place of the spreading of nets, and that the fish may be as the fish of the great sea, exceeding many. That, while the gospel, like the living waters, shall flow from this pulpit, the seats may be filled with penitent sinners and rejoicing saints. That multitudes may here say, "come, draw near all ye that fear God, and I will declare what he has done for my soul." Such exercises would richly reward the proprietors of this house for their labor, and fill the saints with joy, that would extend to the angels in heaven.

Young people, can you hear of this without emotion of heart? Is there none of you that will huzza for Jesus to-day—none that will desert from Satan, and fly to the Saviour, who loved sinners, and gave his blood to save them?

Sinners, can you hate that Saviour?

Can you thrust him from your arms?

Once he died for your behaviour,

Now he calls you to his charms.


It is a thought, possible with all—probable with many—and certain with a few, that the antediluvians ate no flesh. Vegetables, seed and fruit were given them for food. They lived to a great age. No more than twentyseven of their names are given in their history, and yet seven of them, including Noah, lived more than nine hundred years. The antediluvian age lasted sixteen hundred and fifty-six years. After the flood the charter of food was enlarged: every living thing that moved was given to men, to eat their flesh, but not their blood. No one was born after this period who lived five hundred years. What the people drank before the flood, is not told us, but that they were eating and drinking, until Noah entered the ark, we are assured of. After the deluge, Noah became an husbandman, planted a vineyard, and drank wine until he was drunk. Perhaps this was the first inebriation that took place on earth. From Noah, until Moses, a space of eight hundred years, frequent mention is made of eating flesh and drink. ing wine, but no account of strong drink or liquor. During the time that judges ruled, and kings reigned over the nation of Israel, strong drink, and liquor, were much used and much abused: in some cases commanded, and in other cases forbidden. See the following texts:

Exodus, xxii., 29: Thou shalt not delay to offer the first of thy liquors. Leviticus, x. 9: Do not drink wine nor strong drink.

Numbers, vi., 3: He shall separate himself from wine and strong drink, neither shall he drink any liquor of grapes.

Deuteronomy, xiv., 26: Thou shall bestow the money for wine or strong drink, or for whatsoever thy soul lusteth.

Judges, xiii., 4, 7, 14: Drink neither wine nor strong drink.

1st Samuel, i., 15: I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink. Proverbs, xxxi., 4. 6: It is not for princes to drink strong drink,—give strong drink to those who are ready to perish.

Song, viii., 2: I would cause thee to drink of the juice of my pomegranate.

Isaiah, v., 11, 12: That they may follow strong drink—and mingle strong drink.

From these, and other passages, it is evident, that in addition to water, wine, vinegar, milk, broth, juice of pomegranates, and pottage of lentiles,

Published in 1829.

that liquor and strong drink were distinct articles; but what they were, and how they were manufactured, is hard to say. The apple-tree is spoken of as a common and useful tree, (see Song, xi., 3: Joel, i. 12,) but whether the people, as far back as Moses, pressed cider out of the apples is not known; if they did, it is probable that cider was their strong drink. Dr. Gill, from Aben Ezra, a Jewish Rabbi, says, that strong drink, and liquor, were made of dates and honey, wheat and barley. But by whatsoever they were made, and by what process they were manufactured, they had the quality, like wine, to inebriate: and the excessive use of them made one of the crying sins of the Israelites, and of the surrounding nations. Hewett's account of the first invention of alcohol, by an Arabian physician and chemist, is two thousand years too late to give character to the strong drink, and liquors, that were put to a pernicious use in ancient times, and brought so many woes and judgments on drunkards.

I judge, that drunkenness, effected either by ancient strong drink, or modern rum, amounts to the same evil, and has the same impression on body, mind, interest and manners.

The wise Solomon unites with the prophets of his nation, in exposing the evil of drunkenness, but to qualify his reproofs, he says, "Give strong drink to those who are ready to perish, and wine to those who are of heavy heart." St. Paul reproves the excess of wine, and declares that drunkards shall not enter into the kingdom of God: yet he advises the infirm Timothy, to "drink no longer water, but use a little wine for his stomach's sake, and often infirmities."

There is a medical, as well as nutritive quality, in the productions of the earth. Nothing is made in vain. Poisons are medicinal when properly used. God has pronounced the whole creation good.

It is common for men, in the heat of an argument, to carry things too far: their declamations may have a momentary impression, but sober reflection and experiment will bring things to their proper bearings.

These observations suggest a few questions.

First. Is it reasonable to believe that the second cause of the shortening of the lives of men, after the flood, was the use of animal food? If this could be substantiated, would it not be a loud call to the lovers of life to be sparing of sumptuous dinners, composed of meat? Do not gluttony and drunkenness unite to enfeeble body and mind? Can there be evidence produced, that at any one time as many lives were sacrificed by ardent spirits, as were destroyed by eating the flesh of quails? Because meat, used immoderately, degrades the intellect, breeds diseases, and shortens days, is it, therefore, best to disuse it altogether?

Second. It is pretty generally confessed that wine and ardent spirits are good for men in certain cases, but who is to be the judge of these cases? Not the drunken sot, for he would be always pouring the liquor down his

throat; not the physician, for although he may know what suits his own constitution, and tends to his health, yet he cannot feel for another. The sober man himself is the best judge for himself: so Solomon gave himself to wine, (to test its effects,) but applied his heart to wisdom, to guard his taste from ruling his judgment. Any man of common intellect and reflection, is the best prescriber for himself, in all common cases: he knows what food and drink are most friendly to his stomach and health. It is true that a man may eat or drink that which will seem to be advantageous, and yet will be followed with pernicious consequences. Here prudence dic. tates that men should try the experiment, and when they find that any kind of food or drink, or an over portion thereof, is injurious to their health, they should forbear. He whose taste is so vitiated that he will not observe this rule, is an object of pity, but not of hope.

Third. Is it good economy to abstain from ardent spirits altogether, as a drink, or not? He who drinks his six cents dram each day, will spend more than twenty dollars in a year: if he abstains he makes a saving of those dollars—and likely other drink would be as good or better for him. But if ardent spirits are disused, there will be no revenue arising from the tariff to support government. A direct tax on poll and property must fol. low. This grinds hard! The support of government, however, would not be as heavy as it now is. If all the wine and spirits which are now used at levees, public dinners, social hospitalities, and domestic uses, were retrenched, six dollars per day, instead of eight dollars, would be a sufficient compensation for members of Congress, and so on, in proportion, through the whole list of officers. But if this saving economy in drinks is prudent, why not extend it to meats? If a man's flesh bill for life be but three cents each day, in seventy years it would be more than seven hundred and fifty dollars whereas, bread, roots, fruit, milk, gruel and pottage of lentiles, would be more for his health, his perception and length of days.

I am now seventy-five years old. I was never drunk in my life: nor has it ever been a cross to me to abstain from what makes men drunken. For many years of my life I drank no spirits. When the glass was going round the circle where I was, rather than philosophise or lecture, I would put the cup to my mouth, and, without drinking, pass it. About twentyfive years past, moving my family on the road, I worried all day in the snow-drifts, until nearly dark. My strength then failed me, and a faintness came on. A good woman, at the door of her house, handed me a bottle of cider brandy, which I drank a little of, and received great and immediate relief. Since that, I have used it, I judge, at about the rate of a gallon per year. I often receive an advantage by a little of it, and have never had any evidence that it was injurious to me. A spoon-bowl full is as much as I use at a time, and the times of drinking are not frequent. A little in my mouth, before cold water, gives the water a good relish and

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