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of the administration, acting under the eye of the administration. It has dared to enforce this tyranny against a freeman of the metropolis of our State.
These tendencies must be stopped, or before we know it the whole character of our government will be changed; the simple and free institutions of our fathers will not only have become the worst government that has ever ruled over a civilized people, but it will also be the most ignorant. A distinguished Republican statesman — I mean Senator Conkling
lately told me that more than five thousand bills were before Congress at its last session. In a little time, as we are now going on, there will be twenty thousand. Nobody can know what is in them.
We have a country eighteen times as large as France, with a population of forty-three millions, doubling every thirty years, and full of activities and interests. A centralized government, meddling with everything and attempting to manage everything, could not know the wants or wishes of the people of the localities; it would be felt only in its blunders and its wrongs. It would be the most irresponsible, and therefore not only the most oppressive, but also the most corrupt, with which any people have been cursed.
To-day the advances which we have made toward this system are maturing their fatal fruits. The federal administration is tainted with abuses, with jobbery, and with corruption. In the dominion which it maintains over the reconstructed southern States, organized pillage, on a scale tenfold greater than that of the Tweed ring, is the scandal and share of the country.
Civil liberty is endangered. It is now certain that President Grant nourishes the bad ambition of a third term. If the sacred tradition established by Washington, Jefferson,
Madison, and Jackson can be broken, the President may be re-elected indefinitely; and wielding from the centre the immense patronage which will grow out of such vast usurpation of authorities by the federal government, he will grasp the means of corrupt influence by which to carry the elections. There will be no organized thing in the country of sufficient power to compete with him or to resist him. The forms of free government may remain, but the spirit and substance will be changed; an elective personal despotism will have been established; Roman history, in the person of Augustus Cæsar, will be repeated.
Thoughtful men are turning their minds to the means of escape from these overshadowing evils. The Republican party cannot save the country. Ideas of governmental meddling and centralism dominate it; class interests hold it firmly to evil courses. Throngs of office-holders, contractors, and jobbers, who have grown up in fourteen years of administration, in four years of war, and during an era of paper money, are too strong in the machinery of the party for the honest and well-intending masses of the Republicans. The Republican party could contribute largely to maintain the Union during the Civil War; it cannot reconstruct civil liberty and free institutions after the peace. A change of men is necessary to secure a change of meas
The Opposition is being matured and educated to take the administration. The Democracy, with the traditions of its best days, will form the nucleus of the opposition. It embraces vastly the larger body of men of sound ideas and sound practices in political life. It must remove every taint which has touched it in evil times. It must become a compact and homogeneous mass. It must gather to its alliance all who think the same things concerning the interests of our
Republic. It is becoming an adequate and effective instrument to reform administration and to save the country. It reformed itself in order that it might reform the country.
And now in your name and in the name of five hundred thousand voters we represent, we declare that in this great work we will tread no step backward. Come weal or come woe, we will not lower our flag. We will go forward until a political revolution shall be worked out, and the principles of Jefferson and Jackson shall rule in the administration of the federal government.
Let us never despair of our country. Actual evils can be mitigated; bad tendencies can be turned aside; the burdens of government can be diminished; productive industry will be renewed; and frugality will repair the waste of our resources. Then shall the golden days of the Republic once more return, and the people become prosperous and happy.
DWIN HUBBELL CHAPIN, a noted American preacher and lecturer,
was born at Union Village, New York, December 29, 1814. He was educated at a seminary in Bennington, Vermont, and after studying law for a short time relinquished it for theology and was ordained in the Universalist ministry in 1837. For the next two years he was pastor of a church in Richmond, Virginia, and from 1840 to 1846 of a church in Charlestown, Massachusetts. After two years mor as pastor of a Boston Church he was called to the Fourth Universalist Cuurch in New York city. In 1866 his congregation built the Church of the Divine Paternity in Fifth Avenue, of which he was pastor at the time of his death in New York, December 26, 1880. He was one of the most popular of the New York preachers of his time and was an equal favorite on the lecture platform. In 1850 he delivered a fine address before the Peace Convention at Frankfort-on-the-Main, to which he had been sent as a delegate. Among the opponents of slavery he was long conspicuous, and during the Civil War he made many patriotic addresses which were very effective in forming and directing public sentiment. For many years Chapin was the foremost man in his denomination, but his sympathies were not confined to those within the Universalist fold. His writings include “ Duties of Young Men (1840); Hours of Communion (1844); “ Duties of Young Women " (1849); “ Discourses on the Lord's Prayer" (1850); “ Moral Aspects of City Life" (1853); “ Characters in the Gospels (1852); “ Discourses on the Beatitudes (1853); Manliness” (1854); “ Humanity in the City (1854); “ Select Sermons Preached in the Broadway Church " (1859); “ The Crown of Thorns, a Token for the Suffering," his best-known book (1860); Living Words” (1861); “ Lessons of Faith" (1871); Discourses on the Book of Proverbs " (1881); “ Church of the Living God, and Other Sermons ” (1881), and “God's Requirements ” (1881).
NICODEMUS: THE SEEKER AFTER RELIGION
There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews: The same came to Jesus by night."-John iii, 1, 2.
LTHOUGH we have but few glimpes of Nicodemus
in the Gospels, he is a personage of peculiar interest.
A Pharisee, and a member of the great Jewish senate, or Sanhedrin, he shows us that the influence of Christ was not limited to the poor and the obscure; but that, while his words and works awoke enmity and fear among the higher
classes, they struck in the breasts of some of these a holier chord.
It may not be certain that Nicodemus ever openly confessed Christ; yet, in this chapter, he appears in the attitude of a disciple, and we find him defending Jesus before the Sanhedrin, and assisting at his burial. Still, unless the last-mentioned act be considered as such, we do not discover in his conduct that public and decisive acknowledgment which the Saviour required; we do not behold the frank avowal of Peter, or the intrepidity of Paul. There is an air of caution and of timidity about him. He carefully feels the ground of innovation, before he lets go the establishment; and, indeed, he appears to have taken no step by, which he forfeited his caste or his office.
It is difficult, too, to discover the precise purpose of this visit to Jesus. Perhaps he sought the interview from mixed motives. A religious earnestness kindled by the teachings and the character of Christ may have blended with speculative curiosity, and even with the throbbings of political ambition. His coming by night, too, may have indicated timidity, or he may have chosen that season as the best time for quiet and uninterrupted discourse. But, whatever may have been his motives, the position in which we find him shows, I repeat, that the power of Christ's ministry was felt, not only by the excitable multitude, but by the more thoughtful and devout of the Jewish people.
Nicodemus, however, presents a peculiar interest, not only because he exhibits the influence of Jesus upon the higher orders of his nation, but because he appears as a seeker after religion, and as one personally interested in its vital truths. His interview with the Saviour gives occasion for, one of the most important passages in the New Testamenta