The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 108

an aid to New England of three
thousand pounds, to be put into the hands of the governor, and
appropriated it for the purchasing of bread, flour, wheat, or other
grain. Some of the council, desirous of giving the House still further
embarrassment, advis'd the governor not to accept provision, as not
being the thing he had demanded; but be reply'd, "I shall take the
money, for I understand very well their meaning; other grain is
gunpowder," which he accordingly bought, and they never objected to

[10] See the votes.--[Marg. note.]

It was in allusion to this fact that, when in our fire company we
feared the success of our proposal in favour of the lottery, and I had
said to my friend Mr. Syng, one of our members, "If we fail, let us
move the purchase of a fire-engine with the money; the Quakers can have
no objection to that; and then, if you nominate me and I you as a
committee for that purpose, we will buy a great gun, which is certainly
a fire-engine." "I see," says he, "you have improv'd by being so long
in the Assembly; your equivocal project would be just a match for their
wheat or other grain."

These embarrassments that the Quakers suffer'd from having establish'd
and published it as one of their principles that no kind of war was
lawful, and which, being once published, they could not afterwards,
however they might change their minds, easily get rid of, reminds me of
what I think a more prudent conduct in another sect among us, that of
the Dunkers. I was acquainted with one of its founders, Michael
Welfare, soon after it appear'd. He complain'd to me that they were
grievously calumniated by the zealots of other persuasions, and charg'd
with abominable principles and practices, to which they were utter
strangers. I told him this had always been the case with new sects,
and that, to put a stop to such abuse, I imagin'd it might be well to
publish the articles of their belief, and the rules of their
discipline. He said that it had been propos'd among them, but not
agreed to, for this reason: "When we were first drawn together as a
society," says he, "it had pleased God to enlighten our minds so far as
to see that some doctrines, which we once esteemed truths, were errors;
and that others, which we had esteemed errors, were real truths. From
time to time He has been pleased to afford us farther light, and

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

Page 22
None but the most choice selections, gathered from numerous valuable writings, have been allowed space in this volume.
Page 31
The hardening is also ascribed to Pharaoh.
Page 45
We have brought the people from all parties, united them in the one faith, made them one in the unity of the Spirit, with the exception of a few erratic spirits, but we have not had more of these than they had in the time of the apostles.
Page 46
” There is a time to sow and a time to reap, a time to dress the vineyard and a time to gather the fruit.
Page 47
Nor did our Lord mean any such thing, but _he himself_, who came down from heaven, is that bread of life which if a man shall eat he shall never die.
Page 52
In other words, there are cases that can not be settled.
Page 58
Page 74
In presenting the claims of the Lord Messiah, we must clear the way of all rubbish, all written and unwritten traditions of men, all doctrines and commandments of men, all rule and authority lording it over the heritage of God; all creeds and councils of men, all religious bodies and establishments having no divine authority; all usurpations and encroachments on the prerogatives of the Lord Jesus; all religious names and titles, forms and ceremonies, having no precept or example in Scripture; all sects and sectarianism—all these must be swept away; and the supreme and absolute authority of the Lord restored.
Page 85
It is infinitely wiser to teach men how to _keep out_ of hell, while they are out, than to teach them how to _get out_, after they are in hell, or to prove that they will cease to exist.
Page 95
Apology _First_.
Page 127
The Transfiguration of Christ presents us the three states, the fleshly, the intermediate, and the resurrection, or eternal state, all at once.
Page 142
It is safe to follow that, and for the good of all, both men and women.
Page 209
It has been a question of serious doubt with some of the most excellent on earth, whether the protracted meeting is compatible with the genius of the Christian Institution, and whether more evil does not attend it than good.
Page 217
We wish to allude to some errors into which some elders have fallen, for their advantage.
Page 233
Yet there is no account of any, on coming to a fuller understanding, who desired to be baptized in the name of the Lord.
Page 241
Page 269
They practiced no infant sprinkling, but infant immersion, and, in time, trine immersion, or immersed them three times.
Page 287
In all these cases, they might have prayed for saving power till they breathed the last breath, and no saving power would have come.
Page 319
” “Where two or three are met together in my name, there,” says the Lord, “_I will be_.
Page 327
The book ought to have a large sale.