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

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 266

against it, or subversive of it, either directly or
indirectly. We are for no half way work, no compromise nor equivocal
ground. Let every man be for the Bible, or against it; on the Lord’s
side, or against him; for christianity, or nothing; for heaven, or
hell. We want no man who stands in doubt. If a man can not define his
position, so that all can tell which side he is on, we have no use for
him. We count no man whose position is doubtful. All men whose position
is doubtful, are really on the enemy’s side, and would surrender any
post we have, if the opportunity would offer. We are not to be gulled
by these, nor induced to depend on them. We would greatly prefer that
they would stand where they belong, so that all would know where to
find them.

We have identified ourself with Bible men. Their cause is our cause,
and their God is our God. Their work is our work. With them we are
enlisted in a mighty effort to circulate the Bible as far among the
nations of the earth as possible. We are proud to stand among the men
of the Bible, to be enrolled with them, and in the enjoyment of their
fellowship. The prospect before these is brighter now than ever before;
their work is going on more triumphantly, and success is more certain,
than at any former time.


Since this practice of praying for the baptism of the Spirit is
continued with such pertinacity, we have concluded to make a few
remarks upon it. For the sake of making our remarks the more easily
apprehended, we will arrange them numerically, as follows:

_First._ The baptism of the Holy Spirit was a miracle. It does not
exist in our day, for miracles are not done now, not designed to be,
nor of any use if done. Miracles can not be done but by the will of
God, nor can they be suspended, but by his will. He did them when they
were needed, and suspended them when they were not needed. No man
can allege that miracles ought to have been continued in the church,
without alleging that the all-wise God ought to have done what he has
not done. This is absurd.

_Second._ The baptism of the Spirit was _seen_. Nothing of the kind
occurs now that is _seen_. Therefore, there is now no baptism of the

_Third._ The baptism of the Spirit was _heard_. Nothing of this kind is
heard now. Therefore, there is no baptism of

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Text Comparison with Experiments and Observations on Electricity Made at Philadelphia in America

Page 4
thread instantly attracted by the bottle.
Page 6
The closer the contact between the shoulder of the wire, and the gold at one end of the line, and between the bottom of the bottle and the gold at the other end, the better the experiment succeeds.
Page 8
This difference between fire-light and sun-light, is another thing that seems new and extraordinary to us.
Page 11
We rub our tubes with buckskin, and observe always to keep the same side to the tube, and never to sully the tube by handling; thus they work readily and easily, without the least fatigue; especially if kept in tight pastboard cases, lined with flannel, and fitting closeto the tube.
Page 12
Since we are of opinion, that there is really no more electrical fire in the phial after what is called its _charging_, than before, nor less after its _discharging_; excepting only the small spark that might be given to, and taken from, the non-electric matter, if separated from the bottle, which spark may not be equal to a five hundredth part of what is called the explosion.
Page 15
The latter we found to be true: for that bottle on trial gave the shock, though filled up as it stood with fresh unelectrified water from a tea-pot.
Page 16
If now the picture be moderately electrified, and another person take hold of the frame with one hand, so that his fingers touch its inside gilding, and with the other hand endeavour to take off the crown, he will receive a terrible blow, and fail in the attempt.
Page 17
About thirty _radii_ of equal length, made of sash glass cut in narrow strips, issue horizontally from the circumference of the board, the ends most distant from the center being about four inches apart.
Page 23
For when vapours rise into the coldest region above the earth, the cold will not diminish the electrical fire, if it doth the common.
Page 24
more speedily and easily deposite their water, having but little electrical fire to repel and keep the particles separate.
Page 28
Till lately we could only fire warm vapours; but now we can burn hard dry rosin.
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Now if you would draw off this atmosphere with any blunt smooth body, and approach the middle of the side A, B, you must come very near before the force of your attracter exceeds the force or power with which that side holds its atmosphere.
Page 41
Turn its tail towards the prime conductor, and then it flies to your finger, and seems to nibble it.
Page 44
Now the departing fire leaving a vacuum, as aforesaid, between these pores, which air nor water are fine enough to enter and fill, the electrical fluid (which is every where ready in what we call the non-electrics, and in the non-electric Mixtures that are in the air,) is attracted in: yet does not become fixed with the substance of the glass, but subsists there as water in a porous stone, retained only by the attraction of the fixed parts, itself still loose and a fluid.
Page 45
--Glass, a body extremely elastic (and perhaps its elasticity may be owing in some degree to the subsisting of so great a quantity of this repelling fluid in its pores) must, when rubbed, have its rubbed surface somewhat stretched, or its solid parts drawn a little farther asunder, so that the vacancies in which the electrical fluid resides, become larger, affording room for more of that fluid, which is immediately attracted into it from the cushion or hand rubbing, they being supply'd from the common stock.
Page 49
I have also smelt the electrical fire when drawn through gold, silver, copper, lead, iron, wood, and the human body, and could perceive no difference; the odour is always the same where the spark does not burn what it strikes; and therefore I imagine it does not take that smell from any quality of the bodies it passes through.
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