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It is said that he permitted the people to worship naked, to their shame, and this excuse, filmy and attenuated as it is, is the best his brother Moses has given for him, Yet he uttered no protest, as far as recorded, against the people's purpose, though three thousand were slain to vindicate the honor of deity!

But what of Solomon the wise man, and of the long line of kings who introduced idol worship even in the temple of the Lord?

"But King Solomon loved many strange women, together with the daughters of Pharaoh, women of the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Zidonians, and Hittites; of the nations concerning which the Lord said unto the children of Israel, Ye shall not go in to them, neither shall they come in unto you: for surely they shall turn away your heart after their gods: Solomon clave unto these in love. And he had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines: and his wives turned away his heart. For it came to pass when Solomon was old, that his wives turned away his heart after other gods: and his heart was not perfect with the Lord his God, as was the heart of David his father.... Then did Solomon build an high place for Chemosh, the abomination of Moab, in the hill that is before Jerusalem, and for Molech, the abomination of the children of Ammon.

"And likewise did he for all his strange wives, which burnt incense and sacrificed unto their gods. And the Lord was angry with Solomon, because his heart was turned from the Lord God of Israel, which had appeared unto him twice, and had commanded him concerning this thing, that he should not go after other gods: but he kept not that which the Lord commanded" (1 Kings xi.)

Here was the wisest of men, the king of a nation favored of God; to whom he had revealed himself, time and time again-rich beyond compare, and yet a traitor to his divine

benefactor-given to harlotry and idolatry manifold: did God punish his treason with death? Oh! no! he did not rend his kingdom from him, even, while he lived, but spared it him for King David's sake! The same David who joined the hosts of the Philistines to fight against Israel, put captives to cruel torture, and mutilated the persons of the dead! Surely, David in his treason to his own people was a traitor to God. In those days they who knew their Master's will and did it not were beaten with few stripes; those who knew it not, with many. Why was it that the " chosen people," with shining miracles always before their eyes, and the voice of Jehovah ringing in their ears, were commanded to fatten upon the spoils the life-blood of the poor heathen, who knew not God? The chosen people were always forsaking the spiritual deity, and making a "corner " in gods of wood and stone. Yet God is no respecter of persons! You, Father, have a holier design toward the heathen. You would convert them, and make men of them. You would not slay the innocents because their fathers had sinned, but in your beneficence would fain rescue the fathers from the moral and intellectual darkness into which they are plunged.

But in regard to treason as a justification for the slaying of millions, because God was King, and to deny his authority was treason: unfortunately for such logic, after the Book of the Law was found in the house of the Lord (2 Kings xxii. 8) the Jewish people were professedly governed by it and enforced the laws therein prescribed, among which were commands that witches, idolaters and Sabbath-breakers should be put to death. In it we also read: "If thy brother, the son of thy mother, or thy son, or thy daughter, or the wife of thy bosom, or thy friend which is as thine own soul, entice thee secretly, saying, Let us go and serve other gods, which thou hast not known, thou, nor thy fathers; ... thou shalt surely

kill him; thine hand shall be first upon him to put him to death, and afterward the hand of all the people. And thou shalt stone him with stones that he die." Again, in Ahab's reign, the holy prophet slew four hundred and fifty of the prophets of Baal (1 Kings xviii. 40): “And Elijah said unto them, take the prophets of Baal, let not one of them escape. And they took them: and Elijah brought them down to the brook of Kishon, and slew them there." And again in the good Josiah's reign (2 Kings xxiii. 20): "And he slew all the priests of the high places that were there upon the altars, and burned men's bones upon them, and returned to Jerusalem." Thus we see the argument that it was right to put heretics to death, because God was King and heresy was treason against the state, fades away like mist before the sun: for long after theocracy had given place to kingly rule it was the law and custom to visit the same offences with the same punishment as when God was the direct ruler of the Jewish people.

We may be asked whether God is not at all times the ruler of all men? Yes his being admitted, his sovereignty is universal and perpetual. He cannot renounce his dominionhis fatherhood; and if his justice and mercy sanctioned in olden times the slaughter of those who denied his authority, so also should they now. It was on this strictly logical basis that persecution grew up-that witches were burned and heresy punished as a crime. And if it was a crime in the dark ages spanned by Jewish history, a much greater is it now and deserving of more severe punishment. We should not wonder, then, at the blood-stained history of the past. It is the natural and logical consequence of Jewish doctrines, laws and precedents, which were believed to have been recorded by men under the full and direct inspiration of God.

Idolatry treason! No honest thought can be treason to him who knows the hearts and motives of men.

Lambert." Is a government intolerant because it will not tolerate treason? If not, then the Jewish government was not intolerant, and the fact that God was its direct ruler does not change the nature of the case."

As shown above-and let not the reader forget this important fact-the same punishment was meeted out to idolaters; at least when they were not rich, wise, and powerful (as in King Solomon's case), under kingly as under theocratic rule, sometimes, even, at the hands of God's own prophets. The treason argument, therefore, as it proves too much, according to the laws of logic proves nothing. But look the question fairly in the face. Not only is it objected that so-called treason was punished, but that the penalty was often so brutally inflicted. The humanity of to-day, even in capital cases, for the highest grades of crime, requires that the offender should be put out of the way with as little suffering as possible. To inflict wanton pain on a criminal is revolting to the highest sense of justice and mercy. We never torture the living nor mutilate the dead.

The ancient Jews were at the same time a semi-barbarous and a wonderful people; barbarous, in that they, in common with other nations less advanced, were not free from the instincts of savagery; while wonderful in their capacity for intellectual development, in their devotedness to religious conviction, sometimes so fully and beautifully formulated in a spiritual faith and a perfect moral code; and wonderful in their persistent violation of every principle of ethics and every religious sentiment, in their noblest aspects, as spoken by their poets, priests, and prophets.

Paradoxical race! We cannot tell what it was without saying what it was not, nor what it was not without declaring what it was. What gems of thought, in its sacred books, do we find scattered among the rubbish of ceremony! What

sweet and holy-tempered precepts of charity and universal brotherhood dispersed among commands bloody and cruel! How much of the purely spiritual is defiled—if purity can be defiled-by the material and grossly sensuous! The stranger within thy gates, O Jerusalem, ye must treat with kindness and becoming hospitality; for ye were once strangers in a strange land. How charming the sentiment, how persuasive the recall to memory of the time when Israel in bondage, among a strange people, begged the kindness which they are told to accord to others.

But what of the decree: that which dieth of itself ye may give to the stranger or sell to the alien, that he may eat it, but thou, Israel, being holy, must forego the luxury!

With regard to liberty of conscience the good Father seems somewhat confused. In one place his words imply that "speculative conscience" is admissible and not subject to the penalties of mundane law divine. In other words that a man is privileged to think what he pleases, if he does not speak nor formulate his ideas in overt acts. On the next page we are told that "The only liberty of thought which he (God) does not allow is the liberty to think error, to meditate evil, to plan crime." But who shall decide what is error, what meditations are evil, and what plans criminal? Evidently the safest way is not to think at all, for the rod is over us and may fall, but to hire some ecclesiastic to think for us.

Lambert.-"On what evidence or authority do you assert that men, etc., were punished simply because they had not intelligence enough to understand the law?"

It would seem apparent that the wanderers in a desert wild would not have worshipped Aaron's calf if they had not honestly expected deliverance by it. And we may learn a lesson in later times from one greater than Moses and all the prophets. When the poor sufferer was nailed to the cross,

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