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the chink, chink of its revenues comes a siren song that blinds the eye of wisdom, stops the ear of pity, and steels the heart of love. It is the last and master delusion evolved and formulated in the high council chainber of His Satanic Majesty. High license a step toward prohibition? Nay! nay! It is a step toward perdition, and the higher the license the longer the step!
BEFORE AND BEHIND.
'Twere well if we often felt inclined
Which are pregnant with joy and sorrow.
Instruction and warning borrow.
By the passers-by on the paving.
Bodies and souls enslaving.
And it's not very hard to find it.
THE VICE OF INTEMPERANCE.
natures, tending not merely to create a conflict between the nicely-adjusted principles but to assure the triumph of that which is low, base, sensual and earthly over the heavenly and pure; to convert this so curiously organized frame into a disordered, crazy machine and so drag down the soul to the slavery of groveling lusts.
In the first place, there is the shameful abuse of the bounties of Providence, which, after spreading out the earth as a great table for our nutriment, was pleased to add unnumbered cordial spirits to gratify and cheer us,—sweet waters and lively spices—to fill the fibres of the cane with its luscious syrups, the clusters of the vine with its cooling juices, and a hundred aromatic leaves, berries and fruits with their refreshing and reviving essences. I say it is the first aggravation of the sin of intemperance that it seizes on all these kind and bountiful provisions, turns them into a source not of comfort and health but of excess, and converting everything that has life and power—like the exhilarating and the soothing, the stimulant and the opiate—into one accursed poison.
Next come the ravages of this all-destroying vice on the health of its victims. You see them resolved, as it were, to anticipate the corruption of their natures. They wish to reconvert the dust, before their hour comes, to its primitive deformity and pollution. It has been called a partial death. I would rather call it a double death, by which they drag about with them, above the grave, a mass of diseased, decaying, aching clay. They not only commit suicide, but do it in such a way as to be the witnesses and conscious victims of the cruel process of self-murder; doing it by degrees, by inches; quenching the sight, benumbing the brain, laying down the arms of industry to be cut off, and changing a fair, healthy, robust frame into a shrinking, suffering, living corpse, with nothing of vitality but the power of suffering, and with everything of death but its peace.
Then follows the wreck of property, the temporal ruin which comes, like an avenging angel, to waste the substance of the intemperate.
Bad as all this is, much as it is, it is neither the greatest nor the worst part of the aggravations of the crime of intemperance. It produces consequences of still more awful moment. It first exasperates the passions and then takes off from them the restraints of the reason and the will; maddens and then unchains the tiger, ravening for blood; tramples all the intellectual and moral man under the feet of the stimulated clay; lays the understanding, the affections, and the conscience in the same grave with prosperity and health; and having killed the body-kills the soul.
CHURCHES AND SALOONS.
BISHOP JOHN F. HURST.
'HE sale and use of intoxicating beverages is a most
potent force in separating the masses from sympathy with the gospel. No man who habitually uses the cup of intoxication can be a sympathetic and devout worshiper in a Christian sanctuary. The wine-glass is an opaque affair, and God can not be seen through it.
With the demon of appetite within a man, he loves the saloon and such company as frequents it better than he loves the church.
His argument runs thus:
“ In the saloon there is more freedom of a certain kind. The speech, such as it is, is plainer. The society is hilarious. One man does not do all the talking. No church debt is to be paid.”
Take away from the indifferent and sinful masses all the poor that the intoxicating cup has made poor, all the children that it has orphaned, all the sorrowing women that it has converted into Niobes, “all tears," all the vagrants that it has stripped of home and bread and bed, all the anarchists whose brain it has set seething and spinning with pictures of the glory of owning nothing and obeying no man, and you will need the lamp of Diogenes to find the few individuals who will be left in alienation from the Christian church.
Let the saloon once take its departure from American soil and there will be such destruction of the separating forces of our polyglot population; such a clearing up of the misty atmosphere which leads the employer and the wage-earner to believe that each is the other's foe; such an appreciation by the unevangelized of the beauty and force of Christianity; such a flowing of the multitude into the Christian churches, that the treasury of every church in the land will be overstrained to provide even temporary places of worship for the millions who are controlled and absorbed by a new affection.
In due time, when once the saloon is gone and the new currents of beneficence are in full flow, there will be enough gold and vital energy released from bondage to the worm of the still to establish enough churches for all our population, to plant missions on the farthest shores of the farthest seas, and to put the Bible into every hand, in the language of the people, from the rising to the setting sun.
COME OUT FROM AMONG THEM."
MRS. MARY T. LATHRAP.
N any such moral struggle as temperance reform involves,
forces engaged, with the human probabilities of success, and, therefore, stands trembling between expediency and righteousness in a choice of methode.
Any contest which touches the kingdom of Christ, the welfare of humanity, and the salvation of souls, must of necessity sweep out into the unseen, and lay hold of spiritual forces.
Where is the strength of the liquor oligarchy of this country? Appetite, avarice, greed of power, political policy—all these and more are the seen forces to be overcome; but back of them is a Satanic conspiracy to ruin men in this world and the other, and to overturn the kingdom of God and of Christ. Every blow struck by this power, therefore, is in open, bitter opposition to all that Jesus came to accomplish. Not Satanic influences but Satan himself bears rule in this gigantic national iniquity.
Wherein lies the power of the temperance movement? Truth uttered by trenchant pen and eloquent lips, to which the world must needs pause and listen. Organizations composed of men who are willing to be counted for that truth and organizations of women who, by prayer and social influence, seek to advance it. All these and more, but back of them, in them, breathing through them, is God Himself. Not Divine influences, but Divinity in person is on the field where eternal right is at stake and souls are lost or won.
So this great reform, like those which have gone before it, arrays not alone the armies of earth, but other and greater armies darken the air just beyond the line of our vision, while this contest, which stirs our hearts, moves heaven and hell.
Satan can not unconcerned look on alcohol's destruction. Christ can not unconcerned look upon the slaughter of souls through alcohol. This puts the battle beyond “flesh and blood” among “ principalities and powers.”
In such a realm as this, traversed by such forces, “expediency " has no place. A choice of evils is an impossibility. They may find room in the short-lived calculations of men, but never where the kingdom of light and the empire of darkness meet in decisive contest. “They always win who side with God” is not only the trust of the Christian heart but is also the lofty belief of the patriot and student of history.
God with men is not simply a possibility but a fact where any evil is to be overthrown, and His power at hand makes