Memoirs of Benjamin Franklin; Written by Himself. [Vol. 1 of 2] With His Most Interesting Essays, Letters, and Miscellaneous Writings; Familiar, Moral, Political, Economical, and Philosophical, Selected with Care from All His Published Productions, and Comprising Whatever Is Most Entertaining and Valuable to the General Reader

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 218

of the contest with Britain, when we
were sensible of danger, we had daily prayers in this room for the
Divine protection! Our prayers, sir, were heard; and they were
graciously answered. All of us who were engaged in the struggle must
have observed frequent instances of a superintending Providence in our
favour. To that kind Providence we owe this happy opportunity of
consulting in peace on the means of establishing our future national
felicity. And have we now forgotten that powerful friend? or do we
imagine we no longer need its assistance? I have lived, sir, a long
time: and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this
truth, _That_ GOD _governs in the affairs of men_! And if a sparrow
cannot fall to the ground without his notice, is it probable that an
empire can rise without his aid? We have been assured, sir, in the
Sacred Writings, that "except the Lord build the house, they labour in
vain that build it." I firmly believe this; and I also believe, that
without his concurring aid, we shall succeed in this political building
no better than the building of Babel: we shall be divided by our little
partial local interests, our projects will be confounded, and we
ourselves shall become a reproach and a byword down to future ages. And,
what is worse, mankind may hereafter, from this unfortunate instance,
despair of establishing government by human wisdom, and leave it to
chance, war, and conquest.

I therefore beg leave to move,

That henceforth prayers, imploring the assistance of Heaven and its
blessing on our deliberations, be held in this Assembly every morning
before we proceed to business; and that one or more of the clergy of
this city be requested to officiate in that service.

[Note by Dr. Franklin.]--"_The Convention, except three or four persons,
thought prayers unnecessary!!_"

* * * * *

END OF VOL. I.


FOOTNOTES:

[18] The following appears to be the history of this celebrated Act:

Until 1763, whenever Great Britain wanted supplies directly from the
colonies, the secretary of state, in the king's name, sent them a letter
of requisition, in which the occasion for the supplies was expressed;
and the colonies returned a _free gift_, the mode of levying which
_they_ wholly prescribed. At this period the chancellor of the exchequer
(Mr. George Grenville) says to the House of Commons, "_We must call for
money from the

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

Page 30
They estimate a man, not by his learning, his talent or money, but by his love to the Lord Jesus the Christ.
Page 45
“How far is diversity to be tolerated?” We are all required to “speak the same thing,” to “teach no other doctrine,” to “preach the word,” to preach no “other gospel,” to teach the things that become “sound doctrine,” and if we “speak not according to his word it is because there is no light in us.
Page 53
As to _fine_ paper, covers, etc.
Page 72
Is it possible that any man can fail to see that no man can be, in the true sense, a preacher of Jesus and ignore any part of this commission, or any part of the way of salvation, as set forth by the apostles under this commission? THE KIND OF PREACHING REQUIRED.
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Men who have no concern themselves, or who are nearly in the same predicament, may deliver their little, dry and lifeless harangues, but they make no impression.
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BOUNDARY LINE OF REPENTANCE.
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This is the second death.
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The work of all sceptics has been, simply to tear up the foundation of Christians, and not to lay any foundation for themselves.
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Read the Bible carefully, and note the part the women took, the greatest and best of them, as well as all classes, in the Patriarchal, Jewish and Christian institutions, and follow what you find there.
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At such times there.
Page 145
But how different where this feeling of responsibility is lost? The most awful consequences may be referred to, the most terrible appeals may be made, and the most powerful inducements may be placed before them, but Galio like, they are all unheeded and unappreciated.
Page 167
The idea of the Papacy existing, except in embryo, insidiously coming up, without a Pope, a Cardinal, an Arch-bishop, a Bishop, a Priest, a Nun, or Sister of Charity, for centuries after Christ, is one of the most preposterous things ever.
Page 173
We may depart from them, but can not modify them.
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” “Go you into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.
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Mercy and peace upon the Israel of God.
Page 229
In the next moment the man is arrested! What is he acting upon? Faith in the telegraphic dispatch he had just received.
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Church, a kind-hearted and good man.
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The circumstance, however, that language is an imperfect vehicle through which to convey divine things, is no objection to the divine things thus conveyed to us.
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The communication from God to man found in the Bible is sufficiently clear and intelligible for all the purposes of its original design.
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We live in a time when humble men and good men are overlooked; when working men are forgotten and neglected; and we desire to make a plea in behalf of these.