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dinance enacted by the town council. protected by, that wonderful and mighty
The demands for Sunday closing are document. not authorized by divine authority. They It may be argued that religious laws are purely of human origin.
are found in many places in this nation. Any institution, or work, or recre- But this does not change the plain teachation, or amusement which is proper to ings of that great instrument framed to be carried on during the hours of Mon- be the bulwark of the rights of a free day, cannot justly be prohibited by people. Its guaranties, until revoked civil law upon any other day or days of by the people, still protect the minorities the week. Just civil government protects every man in his rights every day, and does not take any of his natural rights from him.
Proper civil government is ordained to protect the individual as truly as to protect the majority. This is emphatically true of the supreme law of this the greatest of all republics. Our Constitution recognizes no other power than that of persuasion in enforcement of religion or religious institutions. It forbids the greatest law-making body to interfere in religion. All know this to be a basic principle of our nation. If Congress has no legitimate right to enact any religious law, even when asked to do so by the largest majority possible, we ask, Who gives the city council the right to and limit the power of the majority over enact such a law? Have the city coun- the minority, particularly in matters of cils greater authority than the Congress religious beliefs. This cannot be conof these United States ?
strued to give to any man license to inNot only has Congress been enjoined jure his neighbor; and no man who recogfrom passing any religious law whatso- nizes equal rights of his neighbor, can ever, but it is equally true that every justly be deprived of the exercise of any lesser law-making body is equally for- of his natural rights by any majority, no bidden to pass any law respecting the matter how great. establishment of religion. Every man, Therefore, every man has the fullest great and small, high and low, and all right to choose his own religion. Yea, combinations of men in these United he may choose to be nonreligious; and so States are equally subject to, and equally long as he conducts himself as a good
citizen, he is amenable to God alone for Through Christ only, men are made free his choice. This was recognized by our from the bondage of sin. The Declarafirst President, “ the father of our coun tion of Independence and the United try,” and the noble men of his day. States Constitution recognize and guar
Times have changed, but no possible antee to citizens of the United States change in times and conditions can make freedom in things earthly. it right for even a majority to trample Let us stand fast in this freedom upon inherent rights. No change in wherewith we have been made free, and times can make of none effect the law of never again become entangled in the the Eternal. Changed times and condi. yoke of Dark-Age bondage, when supertions never can change the principles of stition ruled. The church then sat upon the golden rule nor make a wrong, un- the judgment seat, having usurped the just law to be righteous and just. power of the state.
The church that gains a standing in The last step in the scheme of repolitics loses her power in religion. ligious legislation under a union of
church and state is the Inquisition with The martyrs of the gospel were vic
all its horrors. To prevent the taking of tims of a union of church and state.
the last step, we must deny the right of THE church never sank so low in spir- the State to take the first step in that itual life as when she influenced the civil direction. A legal acknowledgment of scepter.
religion and religious obligations on the
part of the state at the instigation of the RELIGIOUS fanatics in the past secured
church has constituted the first step in from the state, laws embodying their re
the past. ligious views upon debatable questions. These laws were so intolerant that they The church which seeks to compel all made criminals out of honest, conscien- people to observe Sunday, irrespective tious men who dared to stand true to of belief, under duress of civil law, has their convictions, and to the word of not progressed beyond the Jewish church God.
which sought to slay Christ because He
refused to conform to their human preIt was a crown of thorns that human
cepts and traditions which made void the hands placed on the head of Jesus Christ.
law of God. It was a cup of gall and vinegar that they placed to His parched lips on the A RELIGION which is good enough and cross. If they treated Christ thus while pure enough to be called Christianity He was here, what but persecution can does not need to seek admission through a true, conscientious Christian expect the gateway of politics in order to befrom sinful man now?
come established in the hearts of the peo
ple. It speaks for itself, and will surA RELIGION that is not capable of tak
vive when all else fails. ing care of itself with God's word on its side, is not worth preserving after it has SUNDAY is arbitrarily called the Lord's forsaken God and fled to the state for day. The Bible calls the Sabbath - the support. The theologian who says the seventh day — the Lord's day. Whose church will perish unless it obtains aid word has authority with you — man's and support from the civil power is lean- . word or God's word? Nowhere in the ing upon a broken staff, and knows not Bible is the first day of the week called the power of the living God.
the Lord's day.
To make others happy is the joy of questions are decided by a majority living. The person who seeks to relieve rule. The National Reformers favor a the oppressed, who extends a kindly majority rule when they are on the mahand to the needy, who exchanges love jority side, and favor a minority rule for hatred, and leaves the world happier when they are on the minority side. and better than he found it, has discovered the secret of a happy life.
THE National Reform Association Note and Comment claims that both secular and religious questions should be decided by the majority. If this be true logic, then it must THE Anti-Private School Amendment be admitted that this is not a Christian of Michigan was defeated by a majority nation. Governmental statistics show
vote of more than 200,000 at the Novemthat more than 61 per cent of Americans ber election. The referendum gave the are non-church members, non-religious people of Michigan an opportunity to and non-Christian.
reaffirm their faith in the fundamental The National Reform Association principles of religious liberty and the claims that Christianity and the church
individual rights of conscience. cannot survive unless the nation legal
医送医 izes Christianity, and that the civil gov- MAYOR MOORE, of Philadelphia, Pa., ernment will perish which does not le- was threatened with impeachment by the galize religion. When Rome went down, Ministerial Union and the Lord's Day she had more religious statutes upon her Alliance of that city, if he persisted in books than at any other time in her his- his refusal to enforce the Sunday blue tory. Germany, under the kaiser; Rus- laws of the State enacted in 1794. The sia, under the czar; and Mexico, under mayor regarded these antiquated laws Huerta, all recognized the God of heaven as obsolete and the ministerial threat as as the ruler of nations, and Christianity a mere bluff. The legislature at Harrisas the legal religion. Their day has burg will have to meet the issue, when passed, but Christianity is still here. A a strong effort will be made to repeal formal, legal recognition of God as the these religious laws of more than a censupreme Ruler and Christianity as the tury and a quarter ago. genuine religion will save no nation from overthrow. Even the devils have done
ACCORDING to the Passaic (N. J.) this much with fear and trembling, but Daily News of Nov. 5, 1920, the Passaic that is no guaranty of salvation. The
County grand jury on the previous day only thing that saves is Christ in the
refused to find indictments against the life.
five motion picture theater owners in THE National Reform Association that city for violation of the New Jersey favors majority rule in one breath and blue laws by keeping their theaters open denies it in the next. “Their proposal,”
on Sunday. When grand juries refuse says the Christian Statesman, “to sub- to indict violators of the Sunday blue mit the fourth commandment to local laws because of the obsolete character referendums is in principle a proposal to
of these laws, is it not time for the legissubmit the ten commandments to refer- latures to repeal these relics that origiendums. This is plain, practical atheism, nated under the old régime of a union the setting up of the people in the place of church and state? Christians do not of God." Yet the Statesman denies the need a state law to make them religious, minority any rights of conscience on a and non-church members should not be religions, controverted question, because compelled to act as if they were reliit insists that both civil and religious gious when they are not.
Sıx boys were recently arrested in It is difficult properly to characterize Uniontown, Pa., for stealing fruit from such a statement, namely, “ She started the freight cars of the Pennsylvania what is now God's kingdom, and man's Railroad. The judge of the juvenile ideal of republic.” Said the Saviour of court sentenced them to compulsory at- men, "My kingdom is not of this world” tendance at the Sunday schools. “No (John 18:36); but according to Dr. excuses, apologies, or requests for leni. Radcliffe, it was set up by the Pilgrims ency will be accepted," said the Court. on the shores of Cape Cod Bay, three A weekly Sunday school certificate show. hundred years ago. ing their attendance at Sunday school,
Christ said, "I judge no man” (John was ordered to be presented to the parole 8:15); but the Puritans very soon beofficer of the court. The juvenile court,
gan to judge and to condemn men, some of course, can exercise a wide discretion
of them to torture, and later some even in meting out judgment in cases of this
to death. kind, but we doubt the wisdom of the
This is not to say that the Pilgrims penalty imposed. Boys resent compul
and Puritans were not Christians. No sory religion as much as do full-grown
doubt they did the best they knew, and men, and in nine cases out of ten it develops an innate hatred for religion things, “ they builded better than they
so far as establishing a new order of which no counteracting influence can ever eradicate. A father once remarked :
knew.” They shook off the shackles that
bound them in the Old World, and after “I cannot understand why my children do not take to religion. I have tried my
a time other men, broader minded and best to make them religious. If they
more liberal than themselves, shook off would not bow down at family worship, sought to restrain them, and undoing
the fetters with which the Puritans I would knock them down.”
what the Puritans had attempted and had in part done, actually aided in es
tablishing in this country a government Something Every One Should founded upon the principles of civil and Know
Now, however, it is sought to again UNDAY, Nov. 14, 1920, Dr. Wallace
turn us back to the days of Puritan MasRadcliffe, pastor of the New
sachusetts, and to rerivet upon our wrists York Avenue Presbyterian church, Washington, D. C., preached from the
the fetters cast off a century and a half words, “He . . . set my feet upon a
ago by Baptists and Quakers in New rock, and established my goings.” Ps.
England, by Quakers and Roman Cath
olics in Maryland, and by Baptists, 40:2. His theme was the Pilgrims, who, he
Quakers, and Presbyterians in Virginia. declared, came to these shores “ that they
It was Roger Williams, a Baptist, who might not cease to be English, and they established the first colony in America, built into our continental life the habits, guaranteeing to all men of every faith, language, law, and ideals that were Eng- full and untrammeled religious liberty; lish.”
and in Virginia it was Baptists, Presby. “ The first foot to step upon the Plym- terians, and Liberals, who, while Massaouth Rock," continued the doctor, “was
chusetts still had a union of church and that of a woman, and she prophesied the state, established civil and religious freegenius and grace of the present Amer
dom for men of all faiths or of no faith ican womanhood. She started what is
at all. now God's kingdom, and man's ideal of These are facts that ought to be known republic, the seat of constitutional liberty to all men, and especially to all Amerand civil government.”
C. P. B.
declared in favor of more of the “spirit THE Huntington, W. Va., Sunday
of the Puritans in our observance of the
Of course, the more of the spirit of times. It has lasted longer than any
true worship any man has in all his reSunday law crusade of modern times.
ligious acts the better, but the very fact The mayor is a Presbyterian elder and
that Dr. Bowlby appeals to civil law to takes much pride in his Puritan pro
enforce Sunday observance proves that clivities and ancestry.
what he means by “the spirit of the
Puritans" includes at least their dispapers, cigars, and drug stores are under the ban. Traveling men shun the place position to use the power of the state to on Sunday because they are prohibited
enforce upon all men compliance with from obtaining clean laundry and
their practices. The Puritans did this pressed suits for Sunday wear if they
three centuries ago in Massachusetts,
and according to Dr. Bowlby, the Puhappen to arrive late Saturday night. The people are organizing for a change
ritan spirit is not dead, even though so in administration when an opportunity
many of the descendants of the Puritans presents itself. It is proper that the
refuse to keep Sunday unless compelled Sabbath should be observed in harmony
so to do.
B. with God's commandment, but it is not
埃及 埃 proper that the civil authorities should
DR. W. F. CRAFTS is editor of the use police power to enforce religious ob
Twentieth Century Quarterly, official orligations, nor define such obligations by civil enactments.
gan of the International Reform Bureau,
Inc., of Washington, D. C. In the num兴发娱
ber of the Quarterly issued in March, A Nation-wide Drive for a Puritan
1920, the editor says: Sabbath
“ The imperiled Sabbath, for example, with
which the church itself stands or falls, can be CCORDING to Associated
defended against the commercialized amusePress dispatch sent out from ments that are assaulting it all over the land
New York, November 24, and only by united forces of many churches led by published the following day in the lead
experienced reform societies." ing papers of the country,
While not so stated in this particular Enactment of laws calling for strict en
paragraph, for years Dr. Crafts has inforcement of the Christian Sabbath will be
sisted that the Sabbath (Sunday) could urged in the legislatures of at least thirty-five not be preserved without civil law. It States during 1921,' the Lord's Day Alliance follows that inasmuch as the church itannounced here today. ** An effort will be made to stop
self stands or falls ” with the Sunday incialization ” of the Sabbath,' said Dr. Harry
stitution, which can be maintained only L. Bowlby, secretary of the alliance,' with elim- by the aid of the state, the church canination of Sunday professional baseball, mo- not be maintained or stand without the tion pictures, and automobiling. All stores
aid of the state! would be closed. “We would not impose a Puritan Sabbath,'
But is this true? Did the church fail, said Dr. Bowlby, but we would have more of
come to naught, or cease to be when it the spirit of the Puritans in our observance of not only did not have the aid of the the Lord's day.'
state, but when it suffered bitter perse"A bill has already been prepared for sub
cution at the hands of the Roman emmission to Congress for strict Sunday observance in the District of Columbia, and particu
perors for more than two centuries? We lar attention will be given to California and know, not only that the Christian church Oregon."
of the first two centuries did not fail for This is not the first time that the sec- lack of state aid, but that it flourished in retary of the Lord's Day Alliance has spite of persecution.