Page images
PDF
EPUB

CHAPTER XI.

TEMPERANCE INTERVIEW,

Between a pastor, who prided himself upon being very analytical in all his sermons, and who was out of all patience with any one who did not keep to the point in reasoning, and who withal was somewhat nervous; and a good brother in his church, who was not very remarkable for the conclusiveness of his reasoning.

Brother. I called to talk with you about that are temperance sermon you preached last evening

Pastor. What have you to say about it?

B. I did'nt like it much. was too hard on us. I don't know no meinbers of our church, that uphold rum-drinking in the way you said, and as for me, I'm sure I've been on the temperance side for years.

P. In what way? What do you refer to ?

B. Why, you said Christians upheld rumdrinking, when they did'nt take no stand agin it.

I think you

about you

sermon.

P. Well, what then? Is not that true? If you say nothing against an evil, is not that countenancing it ?

B. But I do say a great deal agin it.
P. That is not the point! I said nothing

in
my

The question is, do all Christians take a stand in favor of temperance ?

B. Our church does as far as I know, and I guess

I know as much about 'em as any. body.

P. What has our church to do with it? I did not say a word about our church.

B. I know you did'nt call the church out by name,

but all knew you meant us, and we thought it was goin a great ways too far to hold us up, as bein agin the temperance cause.

P. It is strange you knew I meant the church, when I did not know it myself. I had nothing to say about the church in any manner. What in the world had our church to do with any temperance sermon ?

B. I thought you meant us, and others thought so too, and was very much hurt.

P. That is stranger yet-hurt! I cannot conceive what they were hurt about. Did you feel hurt too ?

we

B. Sartinly I did, or I shouldn't come here to talk with you about it.

P. But why were your feelings hurt ? What about?

B. Why, as I jest said, because you was so hard on us.

P. I do not see as there is any use in talking about the matter. I tell you I did not refer to the church at all.

B. Well, the church think you meant 'em.

P. I do not see how any persons could have thought I meant them, unless their own consciences convicted them. They must feel guilty, or they would not have thought so.

B. Guilty—guilty of what ?

P. Guilty of not taking a stand in favor of temperance; and if any of them are guilty, I did mean them.

B. But you jest said you didn't mean the church. P. So I say now.

I did not mean the church as a church. 1 was preaching about Christians working in the temperance cause; and said, that I believe that those Christians who did not take a stand in favor of temperance, uphold rum-drinking.

And I say it

case,

now, and intend on all proper occasions to say it, and if there are any members of our church who are not willing to come up and do their duty in this cause, I did mean them among others. The fact that some of them feel hurt as you say, leads me strongly to suspect that they are conscious of not discharging their duty, and therefore, as is very apt to be the

when a man is convicted by his own conscience, supposed I meant them. B. I was one that was hurt; do

you

think my conscience made me feel kind-er guilty ?

P. I presume it did, for I have never known you to manifest any particular interest in the temperance reformation.

B. I do feel interested about it, but I don't make such a pint on't as some folks do.

P. Do not make a point of it !-How do you show your interest?

Have you joined the society?

B. No, I never jined.
P. Why not?

B. Because I an't goin to sign away my liberty for any man.

P. I am sorry to hear you sing that hackneyed song about signing away liberty. Do you use intoxicating liquors ?

B. No-I haven't drunk a drop of speret for six years. I am a real temperance man, but I don't want no pledges.

P. Why not ? Why are you unwilling to join the society if you use no spirits ?

B. Because I want folks to know that I can be a sober man without takin no pledge.

P. There is no use then in talking with you. If you consider a mere childish notion of not wanting to pledge yourself, sufficient to counterbalance the fact, that you are standing in the way of others who ought to sign at once, and also as an offset to throwing your influence in favor of intemperance, you are so unreasonable, that time spent in talking with you is thrown away.

B. You're too hard on me; I don't throw my influence in favor of intemperance.

P. If you don't positively, you do negatively.

B. I don't know what you mean by that.

P. Why, if you do not work against intemperance, you are countenancing it.

B. I don't see it so.

P. Don't see it so !-It is time then you did. It is just such men as you are, who are

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »