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move it; we only moderate and regulate it, and render it more efficient by making it more pure.
Thus have we seen, from a review of the dangers of the camp, of the vices of the camp, the humanity of the rules of war, and the Christian duty of patriotism, that so far from piety being properly expelled from the camp, there is in fact no field where her influence is more needed, or where she may gather greener laurels.
III. But we may be told, that this is plausible enough in theory, but can never be reduced to practice. This renders a third line of argument necessary to sustain the proposition before us. We have many illustrious examples of the actual compatibility of piety and martial valor.
True piety abates nothing from true courage. Never were there bolder or more successful leaders than Joshua, David, Nehemiah, and the Maccabees. Two Roman centurions are held up as saints in the New Testament; to one of whom our Lord himself testified as of surpassing faith, while an angel bore witness of the other, that his prayers and alms had gone up as a memorial to heaven. And perhaps I might not go amiss, if I were to allude to a third centurion, who, when scribes and priests were crucifying their Lord, spoke out at the foot of the cross he was set to guard, and declared his conviction, that truly this was the Son of God. I might refer to the Thundering Legion and the Theban Legion, famed in history at once for bravery and piety. I might point to that interesting moment when Bruce's army knelt at Bannockburn. "They yield,” cried the impetuous Edward ; " see, they kneel for mercy !" " They do," replied Umfraville, “but not for ours. On that field those men will conquer or die.”
The briefest reference only can be here made to the religious wars of the Swedes, the Netherlanders, and the Scottish Covenanters. Those wars abound with brilliant proofs of the combination of courage and devotion.
In the Parliamentary army, with Baxter for a chaplain, vicious practices were unknown, and prayers were observed night and morning in all the tents. Cromwell, whose sincerity, after two centuries of tory aspersion, is now at last beginning to be admitted, adopted for his motto, that “to cope with men of honor, they must have men of religion.” So he formed his invincible Ironsides, " whose faces were like the faces of lions, and who were swift as the roes upon the mountains.”
It is only necessary to mention the names of Col. Gardiner, of Capt. Blackadder, of Capt. Hedley Vicars, of General Havelock and his Saints, no less men of mark than Cromwell's Ironsides, and for the same reason. Admiral Duncan was an elder in the Scottish Kirk; and after the victory of Camperdown (1797) had prayers and thanksgiving on deck.
In the American armies, we point with laudable pride to Wash. ington, who was a communicant and a man of prayer; and to other officers of the Revolution; to Col. Warner, who prayed at the battle of Bennington at the head of his regiment, and then called out, “Now, boys, for work!” to Capt. Dodge, of NewHampshire, a godly man, who said he never saw such prayermeetings as in the Revolutionary army; to a multitude of brave officers who were ruling elders in the Church-Gen. Morgan, Gen. Pickens, Col. Campbell, Col. James Williams, who fell at King's Mountain, Col. Cleaveland, Col. Shelby, Col. Sevier, Col, Bratton, Major Dickson, and Major Samuel Morrow.
And there were many godly ministers who served as chaplains during that momentous war. Dr. John Rodgers of New York, Mr. Greer of Pennsylvania, Dr. Spring of Newburyport, Dr. John Mason of New York, Dr. McWhorter, Mr. James Armstrong and the martyr, Mr. Caldwell, of New-Jersey, with Rev John Woodhull, then of Leacock, afterwards of Freehold, who wrote home August 11th, 1776: “We have prayers at seven o'clock, morning and evening, when the whole battalion attends, and behaves with much propriety.
There were other divines who bore arms, as Dr. James Hall, of North-Carolina ; Professor William Graham, of Virginia, who was elected captain of a company; Dr. Ashbel Green, who acted as one of the minute-men. At the battle of White Plains, Mr. Allen rushed forward as a volunteer. Mr. Turnbull fought on foot among the men with whom he had just been praying. Mr. Gano, a Baptist clergymen, deserves special mention. He was an army chaplain, and his sermons were remembered by the soldiers for forty years afterward. Being of small stature, he was called “ Christ's light-infantry man;" but his soul must not be measured by his stature, for in the battle of White Plains, he stood in front of his regiment, exposed to the hottest fire. He did this for the avowed purpose of inspiriting and encouraging his troops.
Nor was the war of 1814 without its examples of piety, both in the army and the navy. Commodore Perry, upon entering Lake Erie, sent on shore for a clergyman, to hold religious services on shipboard. He attributed his subsequent preservation to the influence of prayer. Commodore McDonough was a pious man, and always read prayers himself at the burial of a seaman. He read prayers just before engaging in battle at Plattsburgh, on the deck of the Saranac. That battle was fought on Sunday, against the remonstrances of the British general's chaplain, who predicted nothing but defeat; " for," said he, "you are going to fight on the Lord's day against a man who fears the Lord.”
General Andrew Jackson, although at that time far from possess. ing the religious character he bore at his death, told his pastor, the late Dr. Allan D. Campbell, that he knew he should beat the enemy at New Orleans; "for," said he, “ we had more than two thou. sand praying men among the volunteers."
The battle of New-Orleans was also fought on Sunday, and it is a coïncidence worthy of note, as already published to the world through the press, and not out of place to be mentioned here in passing, that a number of unsuccessful battles have been fought on Sunday, and that in all these battles the party attacking was the one defeated. These battles are, besides the ancient one of the Maccabees, the modern ones of Quebec, Plattsburgh, Monmouth, New-Orleans, Waterloo, Big Bethel, Bull Run, Ball's Bluff, Somerset, Winchester, Pittsburgh Landing, and Fair Oaks. It may savor of presumption to interpret dogmatically the judgments of divine Providence, or to pronounce who are favorites of Heaven, or who are the reverse, but the historical facts just adverted to are certainly in harmony with the jealous care with which God has always guarded the institution of the Sabbath ; and it is here relevant to our subject to add, that we may infer the value of faithful chaplains, who know how to stand up for God and his holy day.
Fit to be ranked alongside of the pious chieftains already enumerated, I should name Colonel Alexander R. Thomson, who fell in the Florida war at O-kee-cho-bee. This gallant officer had a furlough in his pocket, granted on account of his shattered health, but disdained to avail himself of it on the eve of an engagement. The evening before he fell, he had a meeting for social prayer in his tent. He received his fatal wound as he was leading on bis regiment, with the words : "Men, remember to what regiment you belong !"
While we record former instances of pious valor, it is gratifying to be able to say that there is no deterioration in our own day. During the present unhappy contest, prayer has abounded. Chap. lains have not been backward to offer their services, and whether with or without chaplains, the men have been known to meet to pray by dozens and by scores, and sometimes even by hundreds, in the tent, the hospital, and down in the orlop.deck. It has been thought that the number of conversions during the last eighteen months among the army and pavy, has been greater than would probably have occurred among the same men had they remained at their homes, for they bad had the Gospel and its precious truths brought nigh to their consciences with peculiar and unwonted freedom and force. Many of our officers and privates are men who have known the power of religion in their own souls; and Mitchel and Foote are as well qualified to lead a prayer-meeting or to deliver an exhortation, as to maneuver a division, or command a flotilla of gunboats.
It is stated of the late Colonel Russell, of the Tenth Connecticut regiment, that he asked Governor Buckingham for an evangelical chaplain, to make, as be said himself, his soldiers the best of troops. He was not a Christian himself - quite the reverse ; but he had noticed that the bravest and most reliable men in dan. ger, were the religious ones. The Governor cheerfully accorded bis request, kindly adding, that one who felt so anxious about his men becoming Christians, ought to feel some concern for himself. The admonition was not lost. The Colonel sought, from a brother offlcer, how he might save his soul, and gave his heart to the Lord. He fell soon after at Roanoke, leading on his men to victory.
And I may be pardoned for mentioning, that just before the brilliant circle-sailing at Port Royal, one of the seamen on board the Seminole, a man who was converted in a signal manner only a short time ago, obtained permission to retire to a convenient place with his praying companions, and for a few minutes they commended themselves ind their cause to God; and it will not be deemed superstitious by the present audience, if it is added, that in apparent answer to their prayers, not one of that crew was wounded in the engagement.
An inviting field opens before us, of incident and anecdote, and it requires an effort to abstain from occupying it. Indeed, our topic has been so extensive and so fruitful, that it is hard to bring it within ordinary limits, and the chief difficulty has been that of selection and condensation. But in view of the remaining duties of the occasion, and of your patience, much has been and must be left upsaid.
Our subject teaches us
1st. That since just wars are lawful, and have the sanction of the Almighty, we are authorized and encouraged to pray for the divine blessing on our arms.
2d. Christians are not out of the line of duty in taking up arms at their country's call, to repel invasion, to repress insurrection, or to maintain the Constitution and the laws.
30. Ministers have an interesting field of usefulness before them, which they should not be slow to enter, as chaplains in the army and navy, in camps and hospitals.
4th. It is an object worth the labors and efforts of Christian people, to introduce a healthy, religious influence into our ships, forts
, and camps, through the regular preaching of the Gospel, the distribution of religious and moral books, the promotion of Sabbath observance, and the discountenancing of profanity, intemperance, gambling, and lewdness.
5th. Military men, instead of ignoring or being ashamed of the Christian character, should be faithful soldiers of Christ; and while they are personally brave and without reproach, should give every facility to faithful chaplains in the exercise of their peculiar functions.
Time forbids us to expand these few hints. What has been said must suffice. We have plucked a leaf from the Olive of Gethsemane to twine with the ambitious Laurel, not because they are kindred plants, but with the hope that the bitterness of the one may be tempered by the sweetness of the other.
The following letter, written on the last Sabbath in August, 1862, in mid-ocean, by a pastor to his flock, has been sent for publication in the "Prayer-Meeting.” The same pen has already enriched the pages of the National PREACHER this year. The name is omitted by request. * To the BELOVED PRAYING ONES At Home: and we grow more like-minded as
“On this last Sabbath and day of we constantly meet to seek together summer, I take my pen, within a new supplies of that heavenly grace week's sail of the ccast of Europe, we so much need to press us on to to speak a few words to you out of God? These, I take it, are some of the fullness of my heart.
the reasons for the fact. The fact “Why is it, do you suppose, that, itself is undeniable. whether at home or abroad, on the " You will be glad to hear, as I am land or the ocean, a pastor's heart to be able to write, that our gracious turns with special and peculiar inter- Master has been with me on the est and affection to those of his charge ocean, and I have had seasons of who sustain the weekly prayer-meet- great enjoyment of his presence, esing? Why do they seem most dear pecially in storm and sickness. Then to him whose voices are habitually he has been nearest to me, and I have heard in prayer and exhortation, and realized most of his infinite goodness in the sweet songs of Zion, when and matchless grace. God's people assemble for the social to-day, the weather was very rough, worship of their heavenly Father ? and I was too sick to be out of my Is it not because prayer is the power berth, but as I lay there, all alone, of the Church, and they who most my soul was filled to overflowing abound in the spiritual exercise of with a deep and unspeakable peace that power are fairly to be regarded and joy, while I thought of my God as the strong pillars in God s earth- and Saviour; especially in view of ly temple ? Is it not because our the infinite worthiness of God and attachment to each other, as fellow- the boundless grace of the Redeemer. citizens of the heavenly kingdom, I had a very clear view of the excelnaturally ripens into warmer love in lence of the Most High; of the fitcommon, friendly, unrestrained inter- ness of his glory being the supreme course together at the mercy-seat; and constant end to be kept in view
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