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This is an OCR edition with typos.
Excerpt from book:
POLITICS AND THE PULPIT published last week some extracts from a sermon by Mr. Higginson of Newburyport. We esteem such a sermon a gift to be received as something more than a mere matter of course tribute to duty. Mr. Higginson asks and expects no commendation. He does not barter self-sacrifice for an equal weight of praise. But there are many ways of doing one's duty, and there is something in doing it bravely and generously which attracts, and deserves to attract, our admiration and applause. The spirit of this world is fond of inculcating a middle course as the path of wisdom, cunningly flattering our prudence in order to deceive our higher reason. Men are wont to think that they have extinguished a dangerous fire or dispersed a mephitic vapor when they have succeeded in ridding themselves of that enthusiasm of youth which was truly their God-sent pillar of flame by night and of cloud by day. Eclecticism is very good in its way, and self-satisfies us with a feeling of judicial impartiality; but, if we try to keep the balance even between God andthe world, the flesh is apt to slip an ounce or two of overweight into the worldly end of the scales. Eclecticism as between Heaven and Hell, which is a system of philosophy uncommonly popular, and dignified with the name of common sense, generally amounts to sitting on the fence between those two regions and enjoying at the same time beatific visions of the one without losing a genial glow from the other. Let us thank Mr. Higgin- son for rejecting this eclectic vicarship of Bray, and for giving us not merely the exact measure of duty, but for giving it pressed down and running over. There can be no fallacy greater or more dangerous than is contained in the popular axiom that politics and religion should be kept carefully disj...
|Publisher:||Houghton Mifflin and company|
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