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gain that comes to every form of Sabbath-desecrating business, and it would shrink to proportions too small to be noticed. Excursions by rail and boat would cease. Athletic games would come to an end, and no longer would street car companies encourage them and actively interfere, as they do now, to defeat all efforts to secure their discontinuance through the operations of the civil law. Even the Sunday newspaper — the necessary advocate, apologist and defender of all forms of Sunday desecration, since it is conspicuous in the same condemnation — would discontinue its issues in thirty days after the fact was established that it did not pay in vulgar dollars and cents. We should no longer be treated to the shallow and sophistical pretence that it is engaged in doing an invaluable moral work. Its back would be turned on its vaunted mission of beneficence the moment its profits disappeared from view, and these depend wholly upon its advertising. Railroad traffic would be reduced to the minimum of absolute necessity, for already intelligent managers are not slow to discover that their employees are positively benefited by a seventh day's rest from their exacting labors, and that their corporations share in the benefits through an increased efficiency.

Linked to this greed of gain and largely contributing to its encouragement, is the desire for recreation to be found among the laboring classes. Closely confined to their toil during the six working days they clamor for the enjoyment which they think to be within their reach in the unoccupied hours of the Sabbath. And so they thoughtlessly insist that no inconsiderable number of their fellow workingmen shall be deprived of all Sunday rest and compelled to work seven days in the week, to minister to their desires, not discerning that every barrier that is broken down in this direction destroys one more defence erected between them and their exemption from similar demands. Nor can any candid and observing person among them deny that the recreation derived from Sunday excursions, to which they mainly resort, is a costly cheat and a disappointing sbam. Whoever has witnessed the home-going of one of these expeditions men, women and children fagged out, fretful and utterly uncomfortable, more tired than from the hardest day's work — must admit that the idea of there being any real rest or profitable recreation in such use of the Sabbath is a delusion and a snare of massive proportions. There surely is a better way.

The prolonged battle that has waged over the question of opening the World's Columbian Exposition on the Sabbath completely embodied the various reasons and excuses that are constantly met with and urged in justification of the desecration of the Lord's Day. The great educational and informing opportunities there to be found were dwelt upon with mock unction and solemn pretence, and the alleged deprivations of the poor workingmen, shut out, as was claimed, from any chance to visit this great school for the people with its gates closed on the Sabbath, were movingly depicted. But when, at last, Congress, responsive to the urgent and importunate appeals of Christian men and women everywhere, conditioned further national aid upon the presentation of a typical American Sabbath in connection with all other exhibits peculiar to our land, nothing more was heard of all this specious reasoning. It became at once a cold calculation in money making; a figuring up as to whether so many Sundays' gate receipts, less the expenses, wou!d equal the aid voted from the nation's treasury. It was a simple sum in arithmetic, a question of profit and loss, as to whether the money paid for stock was to be returned with possible dividends - only this and nothing more. The welfare of the workingman or anybody else bad as little consideration as the command of God. Neither was worth a rush. Had this grave question been left to the decision of the managers of that great exhibition, its gates would have been flung wide open on the Sabbath ; excursion trains would have crowded each other on every line of railway having any connection with Chicago; the country within a circle's radius of two bundred and fifty miles would have been swept well nigh clean of its population upon successive Sundays, attracted by greatly reduced rates of fare and every enticing allurement that the ingenuity of man could devise. Many thousands of railroad employees, as well as others, would have been ground between the upper and nether mill-stones of hard and unremitting labor. The resulting demoralization as to the observance of the Sabbath would have been appalling. And as it was, even in Congress, the decision long hung in doubtful balance. And now, just as we supposed the long contest was at an end, the whole question is re-opened, aud to-day we are confronted with a fresh struggle. The battle is still on. A desperate effort is to be made at the approaching session of Congress by the managers of the Columbian Exposition — now that they have in hand the money which they sought, and intent


only upon their schemes of gain - to secure the repeal of the Sunday closing provision, and then let loose upon us a flood of Sabbath desecration. The Christian public all over the land must renew their vigilance and relax nothing of effort. They should not be trapped into the surrender of their entire ground under the specious compromise of a half day's opening, or the stoppage of the machinery with everything else free for exhibition and inspection, and the way opened for infringements of every sort. Consenting to such an arrangement, we should deserve, what we would assuredly receive, the merited derision of the world around us, keenly watching our course and ready to avail themselves of every concession to secure ultimate freedom from all resiraint. were better to go down in this effort with our colors nailed to the peak than to announce our own obituary as a moral force hy dropping our flag to half-mast. The history of this struggle emphasizes anew the importance of arousing the conscience of the church, informing the masses of the people as to the dangers that await them in giving over the Sabbath to secular pursuits, and everywhere holding up before men the commandment of God, designed only for their good, and insisting that it ought to be obeyed.

III. And this leads us to inquire as to what needs to be done. Plainly the work of reform must begin in the church, for there has been a lamentable and distinct lapse in that quarter. One of its chief bulwarks is assailed and is in serious danger. It cannot condemn practices in which its own members are too largely involved.

Physician, heal thyself” will be the scornful and conclusive reply that will be made to every remonstrance, and that will hopelessly shut the door in the face of every opportunity for otherwise successful appeal. All participation in methods and business that involve a desecration of the Sabbath should be studiously avoided on the part of every Christian man. Sunday travelling, partial or entire, for business purposes, should be strictly discountenanced. Advertising in the Sunday newspaper should cease. Our duties in connection with Sabbath-breaking corporations, and our use of the multiplied daily conveniences of life which are too easily allowed to invace holy time, should be taken into areful consideration with a view to bringing the work of the Lord's Day, whether imposed upon ourselves or upon others, clearly within the limits of necessity or mercy. This should be done with the sincere desire to honor God. Seeking His guidance we may be sure that we

shall not be suffered to go astray. Who can doubt that if the church thus rallied everywhere to the defence of an imperilled Sabbath, her testimony against its prevailing desecration would be listened to with profound respect, and her appeals would no longer fall upon unheeding ears.

Nor should our own observance of the Lord's Day be formal or perfunctory. It should be a glad and cheerful joining in the worship and praise of an infinite Benefactor and Friend. We should throng His courts with a desire to honor Him in the sight of all men, and to be instructed in all that pertains to that kingdom wbich, begun on earth, reaches on into ages incalculable and eternal With our citizenship already in another country, even an heavenly, we ought with the more consuming desire to seek to grow familiar with its speech, to learn of its laws, to catch its spirit, and to know more of Him whom to know aright is life eternal. They who thus seek shall surely find. They who thus wait upon

God shall be blessed of Him, and unto them will He be so revealed that they will be won to His presence with ever increasing profit and delight. The church in such attitude found, the problem of the second service," of which we are of late hearing a good deal, would be no longer so much as mentioned. And the world around, taking knowledge of our steadfastness, our devout joy, and our faithful attendance upon the means of grace, would be attracted to see and to inquire what it is that so fastens our attention, kindles our hope and enthralls our desire, and witnessing our good confession would themselves be persuaded.

Thus aflame with love to God, and joyfully'obedient to His commands, the church could go forth to vindicate apew the sacredness of His Sabbath, now so widely trampled under foot, and to lift up before men everywhere the admonition sounded forth amid the thunderings and lightnings of Sinai — “ REMEMBER the Sab- 1 bath day to keep it holy !” And then, turning to the “ exceeding great and precious promises,” which are held out to encourage men in ways of obedience, the church could proclaim in the hearing of this nation - so wonderfuily born, so providentially guided, so graciously preserved — the words of Divine appeal, uttered long ago, and yet having a pertinence and a persuasiveness as if they were but of yesterday :

If thou turn away thy foot from the Sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the Sabbath a delight, the holy

of the Lord, honorable ; and shalt honour Him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words :

" Then shalt thou delight thyself in the Lord; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob, thy father; for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it."

Surely, for such a consummation for the church of God, and for our beloved land, we ought unceasingly to labor and devoutly to pray!


for Committee.





66 The

When your committee received notice of its appointment by the Congregational National Council of 1889, to report at this meeting

City Evangelization,” and also learned that one hour had been assigned for the report and discussion of it, they felt that they could best serve the cause by selecting a single branch of the great subject referred to them. After oral and epistolary consultation, your committee chose as the subject for this report, Increased Use in City Mission Work of the Lay Element." They were the more willing to confine themselves to the discussion of this subject because it seemed to them to be one of the most practical, if not the most important, of the questions connected with the solution of the great and difficult problem of “ City Evangelization."

After all that has been so well written in volumes like those of Loomis on “ Modern Cities”; of Josiah Strong on 66 Our Country,” and Riis' “ How the other Half Lives,” and so eloquently said in great conventions, like that of the American Home Missionary Society, and the Evangelical Alliance and The Christian

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