A Book of Gems Choice selections from the writings of Benjamin Franklin

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 108

of the blood of the everlasting
covenant, by the glories of heaven, or the terrors of hell, to turn to
the Lord and follow him who loved us and gave himself for us? Is the
public mind so distracted, and are the people so confused and lost to
all that God has said and done, that they can not be induced to love
Christ better than all human theories, regard him and feel the force of
all his love to our lost and ruined world? Are the people so set upon
gnawing the bone of contention, keeping up sectarian feuds; disputing
upon the lifeless, soulless and profitless controversies thrust upon
them, that they will neither hear the Lord nor be interested in the
word of his grace? Must the public mind be wholly occupied with the
useless distinctions between the views of men, the useless comparisons
of doctrines and commandments of men, the comparative merits of
different human systems, and an eternal train of customs unknown to
the primitive church, thus bewildering the people and blinding their
minds that they may neither see the Lord nor regard his authority? Is
it impossible to bring the authority of the Almighty again to bear upon
the world, to lift up the Lord before the people, that he may draw
all men unto him, convert them to the Lord and place them under him?
Is it impossible to rescue the people from the blinding influences of
these times—from being merely followers of men, and believing human
theories, which have no power to save, in the place of believing
the great truth, that Christ died for our sins, according to the
Scriptures—that he was buried, and that he rose from the dead? Is it
impossible to interest the public mind with the things of God—with the
revelation from God to man, with the religion of Christ itself? Is the
love of God gone from the world? Has the Holy Spirit of God abandoned
the church? Is the human race mad, insane and ruined, so that all
pleadings and entreaties to turn to God must fail? Must the holy
religion of Christ be set aside for the silly disputes of these times?
Shall that holy religion that saved such vast multitudes in the days
of the apostles, fired the hearts of the missionaries of the cross and
supported the holy martyrs in passing through all the cruel scourgings,
tortures and privations for the name of the Lord, be contemned,
despised and rejected by the people of our day? O, that God would
enable us to _arouse_ the people of this

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Text Comparison with The Complete Works in Philosophy, Politics and Morals of the late Dr. Benjamin Franklin, Vol. 1 [of 3]

Page 10
21 9 from the bottom: for or, read nor.
Page 35
At the time of our first acquaintance he professed no particular religion, but a little of all upon occasion.
Page 76
[The life of Dr.
Page 89
accompanied with a liberal benefaction of five hundred pounds sterling; and Dr.
Page 97
It may be said, that, by enabling the colonies to defend themselves, it would have removed the pretext upon which the stamp-act, tea-act, and other acts of the British parliament, were passed; which excited a spirit of opposition, and laid the foundation for the separation of the two countries.
Page 149
So do the flashes of lightning; the clouds being very irregular bodies.
Page 161
The gold was melted, and stained into the glass, as usual.
Page 182
--Difficulty of ascertaining which is positive and which negative.
Page 187
Positive, and sometimes negative, Electricity of the Clouds discovered.
Page 192
Such a cloud, then, coming so near the earth as to be within the striking distance, will.
Page 206
_The prime conductor not being electrified, bring the excited tube under the tassel, and the threads will diverge.
Page 227
Suppose a tube of any length open at both ends, and containing a moveable wire of just the same length, that fills its bore.
Page 238
freezing; and, accordingly, from some water mixed with the spirit, or from the breath of the assistants, or both, ice gathered in small spicula round the ball, to the thickness of near a quarter of an inch.
Page 257
Sept.
Page 265
Each bubble discharged is larger than that from which it proceeds, and yet that is not diminished; and by adding itself to the bubble at the other end, that bubble is not increased, which seems very paradoxical.
Page 272
within about an inch, and there _remain_.
Page 279
I am of opinion too, that the negative state in which you have frequently found the balls, which are suspended from your apparatus, is not always occasioned by clouds in a negative state; but more commonly by clouds positively electrified, which have passed over them, and which in their passage have repelled and driven off a part of the electrical matter, which naturally existed in the apparatus; so that what remained after the passing of the clouds, diffusing itself uniformly through the apparatus, the whole became reduced to a negative state.
Page 281
_Editor.
Page 301
to emigrants to America, iii.
Page 327
_Maritime_ observations, ii.