Franklin's Autobiography (Eclectic English Classics)

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 108

might embroil
them with their elders and friends. Being thus secure of a majority, I
went up, and after a little seeming hesitation agreed to a delay of
another hour. This Mr. Morris allowed to be extremely fair. Not one of
his opposing friends appeared, at which he expressed great surprise,
and at the expiration of the hour we carried the resolution eight to
one; and as, of the twenty-two Quakers, eight were ready to vote with
us, and thirteen by their absence manifested that they were not
inclined to oppose the measure, I afterward estimated the proportion
of Quakers sincerely against defense as one to twenty-one only; for
these were all regular members of that society, and in good reputation
among them, and had due notice of what was proposed at that meeting.

The honorable and learned Mr. Logan, who had always been of that sect,
was one who wrote an address to them, declaring his approbation of
defensive war and supporting his opinion by many strong arguments. He
put into my hands sixty pounds to be laid out in lottery tickets for
the battery, with directions to apply what prizes might be drawn
wholly to that service. He told me the following anecdote of his old
master, William Penn, respecting defense. He came over from England,
when a young man, with that proprietary, and as his secretary. It was
war time, and their ship was chased by an armed vessel, supposed to be
an enemy. Their captain prepared for defense, but told William Penn
and his company of Quakers that he did not expect their assistance,
and they might retire into the cabin; which they did, except James
Logan, who chose to stay upon deck, and was quartered to a gun. The
supposed enemy proved a friend, so there was no fighting; but when
the secretary went down to communicate the intelligence, William Penn
rebuked him severely for staying upon deck and undertaking to assist
in defending the vessel, contrary to the principles of Friends,
especially as it had not been required by the captain. This reproof,
being before all the company, piqued the secretary, who answered: "I
being thy servant, why did thee not order me to come down? But thee
was willing enough that I should stay and help to fight the ship when
thee thought there was danger."

My being many years in the Assembly, the majority of which were
constantly Quakers, gave me frequent opportunities of seeing the
embarrassment given them by their principle against war whenever
application was made to them, by order of the Crown, to grant aids for

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

Page 17
487 Success to Good Men 255 Summary of Arguments on the Action of Baptism 455 Support Workers 77 Tediousness in Public Devotions 323 Tendency of Universalism 142 The Action of Baptism 443 The Bible Will Save the World 66 The Bible Infallibly Safe 145 The Bible and Bible Men 405 The Bible Ground 414 The Bible vs.
Page 20
274 Unprofitable Servants 165 Upward Tendency—Reformation not a Failure —Missionary Work 343 Value of Learning 143 Various Kinds of Scepticism 180 Wandering Pilgrims 219 Wealth of Alexander Campbell 303 We are a Missionary People 88 We are No Sect 286 We have a Perfect Gospel to Preach 366 What a Preacher Must Be 477 What We Are For 97 What is Essential .
Page 34
It can be spread in the same way again, and is being thus spread largely now wherever it is spread at all.
Page 37
We care not if it be so; we care not if it has been demonstrated that the people will give more money for a monkey show than for the kingdom of God; we will not resort to the monkey show; nor do we care if they will give more money for revelling than for the holy cause for which Jesus died; we will not resort to the revelling.
Page 42
law _was_ our pedagogue to bring us to Christ,” the School-teacher.
Page 52
Lord shall open the way for them; not for man, nor to please man, but for the Lord, and to please the Lord, and the work will go on.
Page 55
” Here is a fine sample of little matters, and of troubling the people of God with little matters.
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But if a man does not know what the truth is, the doctrine of Christ, christianity is, and adopts something else, he is simply guessing at it, and is not to be relied upon.
Page 121
So distinct is the New Testament from political institutions, that it contains not one word of instruction to civil officers, in regard to their duties, not one hint what kind of men we should vote for, or what form of government we should favor.
Page 132
Gentlemen, unbelievers, if you like to view the results of unbelief, and the ruin that follows in its train, come up here and see what it has done in the case of an illustrious man; a man whose fame has extended throughout the civilized world; a man of wonderful versatility of thought, and immense gifts as a speaker and writer, with such an opening as no other man on the continent had.
Page 156
The truth condemns them and they do not want it.
Page 183
We listened to the Millerites in 1843, read pretty much all they wrote about a thousand years’ reign of Christ, between the resurrection of those who are Christ’s and those who are not his, and whatever the thousand years may mean in words, “the rest of the dead lived not again till the thousand years were ended,” we find no clear evidence of its coming between the resurrection of the righteous and the wicked.
Page 196
In this gospel, Christ, the “one Shepherd,” is presented, and the one kingdom of God, or one body of Christ.
Page 205
We know we are right, and what remains for us to do is to make every possible effort to attain to a more perfect practice of what we know to be right, and not be trying to get recognition from any of these modern parties.
Page 208
_ The sale of his various works toward the latter part of his life brought a considerable income.
Page 215
” Acts xxii.
Page 224
men’s labor, and building up nothing, all the while prating about _progression_ and _reformation_.
Page 228
” If we can not learn from the Lord and the apostles how to pray; from the Scriptures, so that _we can pray_ we would not learn from all the prayer-books ever printed.
Page 242
It is now our duty to make it known among all mankind; or, as Paul expresses it, “to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which, from the beginning of the world, hath.
Page 261