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prayor, to avert or mitigate the last agonies. It calls up tender recollections, inspires solemn thought, rebukes human pride, obscules the world's glories, and speaks of immortality. From the still death-bersi, what softening, subduing, chastening, exalting influences proceed! But death in war, death from the hand of man, sears the heart and conscience, kills human sympathies, and scatters the thought of judgment to come. Man dying in battle, unsolaced, unpitied, and a victim to hatred, rapacity, and insatiable ambition, leaves behind liim wrongs to be revenged. His blood does not speak peace or speak of heaven; but sends forth a maddening cry, and exasperates survivors to new struggles.
Thus war adds to suffering the unutterable weight of crime, and defeats the holy and blessed ministry which all suffering is intended to fulfil. When I look back on the ages of conflict through which the race has passed, what most moves me is not the awful amount of sufferi which war has inflicted. This may be borne. The terrible thought is, that this has been the work of crime; that men, whose great law is love, have been one another's butchers; that God's children have stained this beautiful earth, made beautiful for their home, with one another's blood; that the shriek, which comes to us from all regions and ages, has been extorted by huma: cruelty ; that man has been a demon, and has turned earth into hell. All else may be borne. It is this which makes history so horrible a record to the benevole.it mind,
II. I have now set before you what I deem the chief evil of war. It is moral evil. And from these views you will easily judge what I regard as the true remedy of war, as the means of removing it, which above all others we should employ. If the most terrible view
of war be, that it is the triumph and jubilee of selfish and malignant passions, then its true cure is to be sought in the diffusion of the principles of Universal Justice and Love, in that spirit of Jesus Christ, which expels the demons of selfishness and malignity from the heart. Even supposing, that war could be abolished by processes which leave the human character unchanged, that it could be terminated by the progress of a civilization, which, whilst softening manners, would not diminish the selfishness, mercenariness, hard-heartedness, fraud, ambition of men, its worst evils would still remain, and society would reap in some other forms the fruits of its guilt. God has ordained, that the wickedness within us shall always find its expression and punishment in outward evil. War is nothing more than a reflection or image of the soul. It is the fiend within coming out. Human history is nothing more than the inward nature manifested in its native acts and issues. Let the soul continue unchanged; and, should war cease, the inward plague would still find its way to the surface. The infernal fire at the centre of our being, though it should not break forth in the wasting volcano, would not slumber, but by other éruptions, more insensible yet not less deadly, would lay waste human happiness. I do not believe, however, that any remedy but the Christian spirit can avail against war. The wild beast, that has gorged on millions of victims in every age, is not to be tamed by a polished or selfish civilization. Selfishness, however drilled into courtesy, always tends to strife. Man, as long as possessed
by it, will sacrifice others to liis own interest and glory, and will grow angry and fierce when others stand in his way.
War will never yield but to the principles of universal justice and love, and these have no sure root but in the religion of Jesus Christ. Christianity is the true remedy for war; not Christianity in name, not such Christianity as we see, not such as has grown up under arbitrary governments in church and state, not such as characterizes any Christian sect at the present day, but Christianity as it lived in the soul and came forth in the life of its founder ; a religion, that reveals man as the object of God's infinite love, and which commends him to the unbounded love of his brethren; a religion, the essence of which is self-denial, selfsacrifice, in the cause of human nature; a religion, which proscribes, among the worst sins, the passion of man for rule and dominion over his fellow-creatures; which knows nothing of rich or poor, high or low, bond or free, and casts down all the walls of partition which sever men from one another's sympathy and respect.
Christian love alone can supplant war; and this love is not a mere emotion, a tenderness awakened by human suffering, but an intelligent, moral, spiritual love, a perception and deep feeling of the sacredness of human nature, a recognition of the inalienable rights, the solemn claims of every human being. It protests fearlessly against all wrong, no matter how obscure the victim. It desires to lift up each and all, no matter how fallen. It is a sympathy with the spiritual principle dwelling under every human form. This is the love which is to conquer war; and as yet this has been but little diffused. The Quakers indeed haro protested against war as unchristian, but have done little towards bringing into clear light, and sending forth with new power, the spirit to which war is to yield. Cutting themselves off by outward peculiarities from the community, secluding themselves from ordinary intercourse through fear of moral infection, living almost as a separate race, they have been little felt in society; they have done little to awaken that deep religious interest in man as man, that sensibility to his rights, tliat hatred of all wrong, that thirst for the elevation of every human being, in which Christian love finds its truest manifestation. Every sect lias as yet been too imbued with the spirit of sects, and has inlicrited too largely the çxclusiveness of past ages, to understand or spread the true spirit of human brotherhood. The love which Christ breathes, which looks through man's body to the immortal spirit, which sees something divine in the rational and moral powers of the lowest human being, and which challenges for the lowest, the sympathy, respect, and fostering aid of his race; this has been rare, and yet it is only by the gradual diffusion of this, that the plague of war can be stayed. This reverence for humanity, could it eren prevail through a narrow sphere, could it bind together but a small body of men, would send forth a testimony against war, which would break the slumber of the Christian world, and which would strike awe into many a contemner of his race.
I am aware, that others are hoping for the abolition of war by other causes; and other causes, I am aware, must be brought into action. I only say, that, unless joined with the spirit of Christianity, they give no assurance of continued repose. This thought I would briefly illustrate.
The present unusual cessation of arms in the Christian world, is to come a promiso of a happier cra in human affairs. It is indeed a
cheering fact, and may well surprise us, when we consider how many causes of war have been in action, how many threatening clouds have overcast the political sky, during the pause of war. But if we examine the causes of this tranquillity, we shall learn not to confide in it too strongly.
The first cause was the exhaustion in which Europe was left by the bloody conflicts of the French Revolution. The nations, worn out with struggles, wasted by successive invasions, and staggering under an unprecedented load of debt, yearned for repose. The strong man had bled too freely to fight more. For years, poverty has kept the peace in Europe. One of the fruits of civilization is the increasing expensiveness of war, so that when the voice of humanity cannot be heard, the hollow sound of an empty treasury is a warning which cannot be slighted. This cause of peace is evidently temporary. Nations, resting from exhaustion, may be expected to renew their pernicious activity, when their strength is renewed.
Another cause of the continuance of peace, is undoubtedly the extension of new and profitable relations through the civilized world. Since the pacification of Europe, in 1816, a new impulse has been given to industry. The discoveries of science have been applied with wonderful success to the useful arts. Nations have begun in earnest to develope their resources. Labour is discovered to be the grand conqueror, enriching and building up nations more surely than the proudest battles. As a necessary result of this new impulse, commerce has been wonderfully enlarged. Nations send the product of their soil and machinery, where once they sent armies; and such a web of common interests has been woven, that hostilities can spring up in no corner of the civilized world, without deranging in a measure the order and industry of every other state. Undoubtedly we have here a promise of peace; but let us not be too sanguine. We have just begun this career, and we know not its end. Let wealth grow without a corresponding growth of the temperate, just, and benevolent spirit of Christianity,
and I see few auguries but of evil. Wealth breeds power, and power always tempts to wrong. Communities, which at once grow rich and licentious, breed desperate men, unprincipled adventurers, restless spirits, who unsettle social order at home, who make freedom a cloak and instrument of ambition, and find an interest in embroiling their country with foreign foes. Another consequence of growing prosperity, is the rapid growth of population; and this, in the absence of Christian restraints and Christian principles, tends to pauperism and crime, tends to make men cheap, and to destroy the sacredness of human life; and communities are tempted to throw off this dangerous load, this excess of numbers, in foreign war. In truth, the vices which fester in the bosom of a prosperous, licentious, over-peopled state, are hardly less fearful than those of war, and they naturally seek and find their punishment in this awful calamity. Let us not speak of industry, commerce, and wealth, as ensuring peace. Is commerce never jealous and grasping? Have commercial states no collisions? Have commercial rights never drawn the sword in self-defence? Are not such states a tempting prey? And have they no desire to prey on others? Does trade cherish nothing analogous to the spirit of war in ordinary pursuits? Is there no fighting on the exchange? Is bargaining nothing but friendship
and peace? Why then expect from trade alone, peace among nations? Nothing, nothing can bind nations together but Christian justice and love. I insist on this the more earnestly, because it is the fashion now to trust for every good to commerce, industry, and the wonderful inventions, which promise indefinite increase of wealth. But to improve man's outward condition, is not to improve man himself, and this is the sole ground of hope. With all our ingenuity, we can frame no machinery for manufacturing wisdom, virtue, peace.
Rail-roads and steam-boats cannot speed the soul to its perfection. This must come, if it come at all, from each man's action on himself, from putting forth our power on the soul and not over nature, from a sense of inward not outward miseries, from“ hunger and thirst after righteousness,” not after wealth. I should rejoice, like the prophet, "to bring glad tidings, to publish peace." But I do fear, that without some great spiritual revolution, without some new life and love breathed into the church, without some deep social reforms, men will turn against each other their new accumulations of power; that their wealth and boasted inventions will be converted into weapons of destruction; that the growing prosperity of nations will become the nutriment of more wasteful wars, will become fuel for more devouring fires of ambition or revenge.
Another cause of the recent long cessation of foreign wars, has been the dread of internal convulsions, of civil wars. The spirit of revolution has, more or less, penetrated the whole civilized world.
The grand idea of Human Rights, has found its way even into despotisms. Kings have less confidence in their subjects and soldiers. They have felt their thrones totter, and have felt that a disastrous war would expose them to a force more terrible than that of victorious foes, the force of burning discontent, exasperated opinion at home. It is understood, that the next general war will be a war not of nations but of principles, that absolutism must measure swords with liberalism, despotism with free constitutions; and from this terrible encounter both parties recoil. We indeed believe, that, with or without war, liberal principles and institutions are destined to advance, to make the conquest of Europe ; and it is thought, that these, being recognitions of human rights, will be less prodigal of human blood than absolute power. But can we hope, that these, unsanctioned, unsustained by the Christian spirit, will ensure peace? What teaches our own experience? Because free, have we no wars? What indeed is the free spirit of which we so much boast? Is it not much more a jealousy of our own rights, than a reverence for the rights of all ? Does it not consist with the inflictions of gross wrongs? Does it not spoil the Indian? Does it not enslave the African? Is it not anxious to spread bondage over new regions? Who can look on this free country, distracted by parties, rent by local jealousies, in some districts administering justice by mobs and silencing speech and the press by conflagration and bloodshed; who can see this free country, and say, that liberal opinions and institutions are of themselves to banish war? Nowhere are the just, impartial disinterested principles of Christianity so much needed as in a free state. Nowhere are there more elements of strife to be composed, more passions to be curbed, more threatened wrongs to be repressed. Freedom has its perils as well as inestimable blessings. In loosening outward restraints, it
demands that justice and love be enthroned within man's soul. Without Christian principle, freedom may swell the tide of tumults and war.
One other cause will probably be assigned by some, for the long cessation of hostilities in the civilized world; and that is, the greater success of statesmen in securing that long-sought good among nations, the balance of power. Be it so. But how soon may this balance be disturbed ? How does it tremble now? Europe has long been threatened by the disproportionate growth of Russia. In the north of Europe is silently growing up a power, which, many fear, is one day to grasp at universal empire. The south, it is said, is to fulfil its old destiny, that is, to fall a prey to the north. All Europe is interested in setting bounds to this half-civilised despotism.
But the great absolute powers, Prussia and Austria, dreading more the progress of liberal opinions than of Russian hordes, may rather throw themselves into her scale, and be found fighting with her the battles of legitimacy against free institutions. It is true, that many wise men dismiss these fears as vain, and believe, that the ill-cemented union of the provinces or rather nations, which compose the colossal empire of the north, cannot endure, or at least will admit no steady prosecution of schemes of domination. I presume not to read the future. My single object is, to show the uncertainty of all means of abolishing war, unless joined with and governed by the spreading spirit of our disinterested faith. No calculations of interest, no schemes of policy can do the work of love, of the spirit of human brotherhood. There can be no peace without, but through peace within. Society must be an expression of the souls of its members. Man's character moulds his outward lot. His destiny is woven by the good or evil principles which bear rule in his breast. I indeed attach importarco to all the causes of peace which I have now stated. They are far from powerless; but their power will be spent in vain unless aided by mightier and diviner energy, by the force of moral and religious principles, the strength of disinterested love.
III. I have now considered the great evil of war, and the great remedy of this scourge of nations, and I proceed, as proposed, to point out some causes of that insensibility to its evils, so common in the world, and so common even among those from whom better things miglit be hoped; and this I do not to gratify a love of speculation, but in the belief, that this insensibility will be resisted and overcome, in proportion as its sources shall be explained.
Among its clief causes, one undoubtedly is the commonness of war. This hardens us to its evils. Its horrors are too familiar to move us, unless they start up at our own door. How much more would they appal us, were they rare? If the history of the race were, with one solitary exception, a history of peace, concord, brotherly love; if but one battle had been fought in the long succession of ages; if from the bosom of profound tranquillity, two armies, on one fatal day, had sprung forth and rushed together for mutual destruction; if but one spot on earth had been drenched with human blood, shed by human hands; how different would be our apprehensions of war!
What a fearful interest would gather round that spot! Ilow would it remain deserted, dreaded, abhorred! With what terrible distinctness would the leaders of those armies stand out as monsters, riot men! How