American Anti-Slavery Society, Broadway Tabernacle, New York City, May 9, 1848
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American Anti-Slavery Society, 1848 39 11. LM’s friend, the Scottish phrenologist George Combe (1788–1858), had published the Constitution of Man in 1835 (Palmer, 54, 169, 171). 12. In a letter to William Poole of June 15, 1817, Hicks expressed his anti-Sabbatarian views (Paul Buckley, ed., Dear Friend: Letters and Essays of Elias Hicks [San Francisco: Inner Light Books, 2011], 37–43). 13. Criticism of the convention included this reaction to LM from the Boston Recorder : “Of graceful mien, with a pleasing and benignant aspect . . . it was yet evident by almost every sentence she uttered, that her soul was rankling against the kingdom of God, and his Christ” (Proceedings, 152). See also Palmer, 160; Faulkner, 128–29; WLG Letters, 3:543–48, 605–6). American Anti-Slavery Society, Broadway Tabernacle, New York City, May 9, 1848 There is not a more interesting object for the contemplation of the philosopher and the Christian—the lover of man, and the lover of God, than the law of progress,—the advancement from knowledge to knowledge, from obedience to obedience. The contemplation of it is beautiful, the investigation of it is exceedingly interesting, as manifested in the history of the world. We find in the earliest records, the command to advance—“to get thee from thy kindred, from thy father’s house, and to come into the land which I shall show thee.” And, again: “ye have encompassed this mountain long enough; speak to my people, that they go forward.” In the declaration of the Prophets of old, it was men of clean hands who were to grow stronger and stronger; it was the righteous who held on his way: and in later times; we find the recommendation of the Apostles to their brethren was, “to go on unto perfection not laying again the foundation for repentance from dead works.” And, indeed, was not the teaching of Jesus particularly directed to lead the people onward,—“Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, thou shalt do thus or so”? then assailed those orders and institutions which they regarded as sacred; speaking directly in opposition to their alleged Heaven ordained law. In contradiction to this law of retaliation, he taught them to love their enemies and to do good to all, embracing all mankind in the love which he so beautifully inculcated, and so happily exemplified. Incomingdowntolatertimes,thislawofprogressismostemphaticallymarked inourday,inthegreatreformatorymovementswhichhaveagitatedthetruth-loving and sincere-hearted, engaged in the work of blessing man. This may not be a fitting occasion to dwell much upon this topic; but there are those present who can look back to the early days of the great peace reformation. The first efforts were to arrest theprogressofoffensivewar;whiletheyclaimedtothemselves,inextremecases,the right of a resort to self-defense. But a reformer now, the Jesus of the present age, on the Mount Zion of Peace, says: “Ye have heard that it was said by them of old, thou shall war only in self-defense, but I say unto you, take not up the sword at all.” The language is not now in only prophetic vision, as of old; it does not, as the current theology has attempted, explain the prophecies of peace on earth, to refer to some 40 American Anti-Slavery Society, 1848 future, far distant millennium, but its language now is “sheath the sword”; “render good for evil”; little children are taught to return a “kiss for a blow.” Do we not see the progress that these principles have made? Was there ever a period in history when nations were so prolific of events as at the present moment, giving promise of being consummated by the ultimate realization of the higher principles of “peace on earth, and good will to man,” calling into action the high moral sentiments of the people, and tending to arrest the sword of the destroyer?1 Truly, this law of progress is worthy of our admiration. Look at it in the temperance reformation: those interested in that cause, can remember how it was said by them of old time: “thou shalt drink wine moderately, and abstain from the unnecessary use of intoxicating liquors.” What is the language now of the Savior on the Mount Zion of Temperance? “I say unto you, drink not wine at all—practice ‘total abstinence’ from all intoxicating liquors.” And how has it been (let me touch upon it ever so lightly) with the subject of priestcraft? It was said by them of old time, “down with...


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