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an hour.' The wise men of France turned their backs on the poor inventor, and, in less than twenty years, thousands of steam-vessels, moving at the rate not of six, but fifteen or twenty miles an hour, were every where proclaiming the enthusiast to have been far wiser than the skeptic, and infinitely more useful to mankind.

But what do the friends of peace seek to accomplish ? Only the abolition of war among nations professedly Christian. Here is our whole object. We dream not of extending our efforts beyond the limits of Christendom; we rely for success entirely on the gospel as God's sovereign remedy for all the moral maladies of mankind; and our highest hopes will be realized when war shall be banished from every Christian land, and peace be made, as a part of our religion, to go hand in hand with the gospel over the whole earth, and the world thus be,—what it never yet has been in a single case, though it ought to have been in every case, -converted to peace as fast as it shall be to God.

Now, is such an object unattainable? Do you really think it impossible for peace to prevail wherever the gospel itself does? If so, where lies the impossibility ? In the nature of man? Then show us in what part of his nature. In his intellect, his conscience, his heart? Has he any principle, any passion, any habit, that defies the utmost power of God's truth and spirit? No; none of his faults are absolutely incorrigible; and, if war be the work of men, it surely can be done away by a right use of the requisite

To suppose the contrary would be a gross libel on human nature, and an impious limitation of His power who hath the hearts of all entirely in his hands, and doeth his pleasure alike in the armies of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth.

Let us look next at the nature of war itself, and see if we can find there any thing to forbid the possibility of its abolition. It is a custom ; and all customs are from their very nature subject to the will of men, liable to change, and capable of being entirely reformed. These properties are essential to any custom, and include of course the possibility of its abolition.

I know very well how common it has been, if it is not still, to represent war, unlike any other custom, as a natural, necessary evil that can be resisted no better than a pestilence, a tempest, or an earthquake. Strange misconception! Did you ever hear of a war, without any

human

means,

agency, bursting upon mankind like lightning from the cloud, or like the eruptions of a volcano ? Does it, like a tornado or the cholera, spring from causes beyond our control ? A war without human hearts to will it, or human hands to carry it on! Is it not so entirely dependent on the will of men as to come and go just at their bidding? Is there any physical necessity which compels them, whether they will or not, to butcher one another ? Such questions answer themselves, and prove that war comes solely from the wrong choice of men, and must of necessity cease whenever they shall choose to discard it. Can civilized, Christian nations never be persuaded to abstain from the wholesale butchery of one another as a means of settling their disputes? The advocates of war tell us they never can be; but we, relying on the corrigibility of human nature, fully believe they can be thus persuaded, and will be, under the influences of the gospel rightly applied.

But do you still plead for the necessity of war? Necessary for what? For the gratification of bad passions ? But these passions may be restrained, or taught to gratify themselves in other ways than the wholesale butcheries of war. Necessary for the vindication of our rights, for the redress of our wrongs, for the protection of our interests? Better means than the sword for all these purposes are clearly possible, and fast coming to be adopted. Necessary for a nation's honor ? The plea of the duellest ; and, when public sentiment shall be thoroughly Christianized, it will be as disgraceful for a nation to wage war, as it is now in New England to fight a duel. Necessary for the safety of nations? All their danger arises from the war-system itself; and, were that system universally relinquished, there would be no aggression to resist. War necessary because nations have been so long accustomed to it? This argument would prove the impossibility of any reform, improvement or change. If war cannot be abolished because it has continued so long, then every form of idolatry, all the barbarous customs of our own ancestors, all the errors and sins of past ages, must have remained to this hour. War necessary because nations recognize no other arbiter of their disputes ? The assertion is not strictly true at the present day, since they are at length beginning to employ other umpires; but, if it were true, it would not disprove the possibility of superseding this custom. Once individuals had no other means than brute violence for the redress of their wrongs, or the adjustment of their difficulties; but, if that old practice of private wars gave place, ages ago, to codes and courts of law between individuals, it is equally possible for nations, if they choose, to provide similar methods for the settlement of their disputes without the effusion of blood.

Nor does society or overnment oppose any insuperable obstacles to the prevalence of peace. What if the spirit and principles of war are through the world wrought into the very texture of them both? So were a multitude of other customs that have already been banished from Christian and even from pagan lands. Society and government, each the work of men, are necessarily moulded to their will, and not only may, but absolutely must receive just such modifications as they shall choose. Only let them universally demand the change requisite for the permanent peace of the world; and such a change would soon pervade, as a matter of course, every society and government on earth.

Need we, then, despair in view of the influences which have for so many ages been leagued all over the globe in support of the war-system? True, these influences are exceedingly powerful ; but they are all dependent entirely on the will of men; and such a change in their views and feelings as we seek to produce, would enlist every one of them on the side of peace. Only turn the popular current: and on its bosom war would ere-long float spontaneously from Christendom forever, just as the tide of a regenerated public sentiment has drifted away a variety of kindred practices.

But do you deem it impossible thus to revolutionize the war-sentiments even of Christendom? The history of man, the promises of God, and the acknowledged power of his gospel, all forbid such a supposition. True, the means requisite for this purpose, are not now in use to any great extent; but the Bible prescribes and provides such means; and, if the friends of God and man would only use them aright, we might confidently expect ultimate, if not speedy

success.

Glance at the history of kindred reforms. Long was knight-errantry the admiration of all Christendom; but where is it now? Vanished from the earth ; its very name a term of reproach; its memory living mainly in those works of génius which ridiculed its follies from the world. Nearly the same might be said of the crusades, and all wars of religion, the prosecution of which was once regarded as the highest service a Christian could render to the God of peace!

For ages did the trial by ordeal and judicial combat prevail. The accused was required to fight his accuser in single combat, or plunge his arm into boiling water, or lift a red-hot iron with his naked hand, or walk bare-footed over burning plough-shares, or pass through other trials equally severe and perilous. Such trials were conducted with ceremonies the most solemn; the ministers of religion were wont to be present; the Almighty was invoked to interpose in behalf of the innocent; and whoever escaped the ordeal unhurt, or came from the combat victorious, was said to be acquitted by "the judgment of God.” This custom, sanctioned by every class in society, by the wisest monarchs, and the highest dignitaries in the church, prevailed for centuries all over Europe; nor is it more than two hundred years since it ceased entirely from Christendom.

Even matters of religion were submitted to this strange test. In the eleventh century, the question was agitated in Spain whether the Musarabic liturgy so long used there, or the one recommended by the See of Rome, contained the form of worship most acceptable to God. On this point a violent contest ensued between the Spaniards and the Popes; the nobles proposed to decide the controversy by the sword; the king seconded their suggestion, and the champions in full armor entered the lists. The Musarabic liturgy was victorious; but the vanquished party succeeded in procuring another and a different trial. A great fire was kindled; a copy of each liturgy was thrown into the flames; and it was agreed, that the one which stood this test, should be received in all the churches of Spain. The Musarabic still triumphed, and, if we may credit the writers of that age, came out of the fire unhurt, while the other was burnt to ashes.

But let us leave those dark ages, and come down to the dawn of the nineteenth century.

Long had Christians themselves, apparently without remorse, and certainly without reproach, continued to engage in the slave-trade; and nearly all the apologies now pleaded for war, were then reiterated to justify that atrocious traffic in the bodies and souls of men. Prejudice, and passion, and interest, and inveterate custom, all clamored loud in its behalf, and covered with obloquy and reproach the few that dared to beard the monster in his very den.

But humanity or the adjustment of their difficulties; but, if that old practice of private wars gave place, ages ago, to codes and courts of law between individuals, it is equally possible for nations, if they choose, to provide similar methods for the settlement of their disputes without the effusion of blood.

Nor does society or overnment oppose any insuperable obstacles to the prevalence of peace. What if the spirit and principles of war are through the world wrought into the very texture of them both? So were a multitude of other customs that have already been banished from Christian and even from pagan lands. Society and government, each the work of men, are necessarily moulded to their will, and not only may, but absolutely must receive just such modifications as they shall choose. Only let them universally demand the change requisite for the permanent peace of the world; and such a change would soon pervade, as a matter of course, every society and government on earth.

Need we, then, despair in view of the influences which have for so many ages been leagued all over the globe in support of the war-system? True, these influences are exceedingly powerful ; but they are all dependent entirely on the will of men; and such a change in their views and feelings as we seek to produce, would enlist every one of them on the side of peace. Only turn the popular current ; and on its bosom war would ere-long float spontaneously from Christendom forever, just as the tide of a regenerated public sentiment has drifted away a variety of kindred practices.

But do you deem it impossible thus to revolutionize the war-sentiments even of Christendom? The history of man, the promises of God, and the acknowledged power of his gospel, all forbid such a supposition. True, the means requisite for this purpose, are not now in use to any great extent; but the Bible prescribes and provides such means ; and, if the friends of God and man would only use them aright, we might confidently expect ultimate, if not speedy

success.

Glance at the history of kindred reforms. Long was knight-errantry the admiration of all Christendom; but where is it now ? Vanished from the earth; its very name a term of reproach; its memory living mainly in those works of genius which ridiculed its follies from the world. Nearly the same might be said of the crusades, and all wars of religion, the prosecution of which was once re

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