Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 37

knave in his composition. He did not like my lodging at Bradford's
while I work'd with him. He had a house, indeed, but without
furniture, so he could not lodge me; but he got me a lodging at Mr.
Read's before mentioned, who was the owner of his house; and, my chest
and clothes being come by this time, I made rather a more respectable
appearance in the eyes of Miss Read than I had done when she first
happen'd to see me eating my roll in the street.

[27] Manuscript.

[28] The frames for holding type are in two sections, the
upper for capitals and the lower for small letters.

[29] Protestants of the South of France, who became
fanatical under the persecutions of Louis XIV, and
thought they had the gift of prophecy. They had as
mottoes "No Taxes" and "Liberty of Conscience."

I began now to have some acquaintance among the young people of the
town, that were lovers of reading, with whom I spent my evenings very
pleasantly; and gaining money by my industry and frugality, I lived
very agreeably, forgetting Boston as much as I could, and not desiring
that any there should know where I resided, except my friend Collins,
who was in my secret, and kept it when I wrote to him. At length, an
incident happened that sent me back again much sooner than I had
intended. I had a brother-in-law, Robert Holmes, master of a sloop
that traded between Boston and Delaware. He being at Newcastle, forty
miles below Philadelphia, heard there of me, and wrote me a letter
mentioning the concern of my friends in Boston at my abrupt departure,
assuring me of their good will to me, and that everything would be
accommodated to my mind if I would return, to which he exhorted me
very earnestly. I wrote an answer to his letter, thank'd him for his
advice, but stated my reasons for quitting Boston fully and in such a
light as to convince him I was not so wrong as he had apprehended.




IV

FIRST VISIT TO BOSTON


Sir William Keith, governor of the province, was then at Newcastle,
and Captain Holmes, happening to be in company with him when my letter
came to hand, spoke to him of me, and show'd him the letter. The
governor read it, and seem'd surpris'd when he was told my age. He
said I appear'd a young man

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Text Comparison with A Book of Gems Choice selections from the writings of Benjamin Franklin

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A.
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374 Enduring Hardness as Good Soldiers 280 Evangelists and Evangelizing 126 Evangelists—Pastors 320 Everlasting and Eternal 279 Exalted Position of Jesus 383 Exchanging Pulpits 209 Excuse for Creeds 146 Extent of One Man’s Influence 420 Faith Comes by Hearing 316 Faith, Repentance and Baptism do not Pardon 308 Feet Washing 253 Fine Clothes 90 Future Success of the Lord’s Army 252 .
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73 Poimeen—Shepherd—Evangelist—Overseer 25 Policy in Preaching .
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We have been made free, in the highest sense, from all the trammels and fetters of men, from sins, from all error and superstition, and are servants of the Lord.
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Not a genuine miracle has been done.
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3: “Let them praise his name in the dance.
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We, therefore, are the only people now known, who proceed upon the infallibly certain method of collecting, and arranging in proper order, all the items required by the Holy Spirit in the conversion of sinners; we mean the inductive mode of reasoning.
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If a man has a favorite political scheme let him declare it, publish a paper advocating it, or maintain it in public addresses; but not under the name of _Christian_; not in the name of the Lord, nor under a pretence of preaching Christ; for this would be a manifest imposition, no matter how good the political doctrine.
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A change was about to take place in the dealings of God with that people.
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This only needs to be run out to its legitimate result.
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But the man who ignores the law of the King, and recognizes persons who are not in Christ as brethren, christians and preachers, instead of displaying a broad liberality, an extended charity, shows that he has no settled principles—that he disregards principles and law.
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Franklin regarded as a surrender of their clerical pretensions and as equivalent to an acknowledgment of the fact that any christian man, possessed of good christian character, and a knowledge of the word of God, may preach the word.
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This very theory, in the place of being Scriptural, is directly opposed to the very spirit and intention of the Scriptures, and is, we doubt not, chargeable with hindering more souls from turning to the Lord and receiving the salvation of God than all the out-and-out infidelity in the country.
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Paul says, “God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of Christ.
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of God, and dying in their sins? We say, and would if we had a voice louder than the seven thunders of the Apocalypse, and more immutable than the oath of the angel of God, standing with one foot upon the land, and the other upon the sea, say, _no_, by NO MEANS, for the following reasons: _First.
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The purpose of God has failed, and the malignant purpose of hell has triumphed.
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” 2.
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4.
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But the man who will not make an honest effort, would not be a Christian if one would rise from the dead before his eyes.
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When the members of the church thus speak and act, neither a man nor an angel can do any thing; and, if I were the preacher, I would not stay a moment with brethren who would thus treat me.