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I.

THE ASSASSINATION OF THE PRESIDENT.

We looked for peace, but no good came; and for a time of health, and behold, trouble! Jer. viii. 15.

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MY FRIENDS, how can I fitly speak to you to-day? How can any human words lift the burden from our hearts? How can any human wisdom fathom the Providence of this national tragedy under whose awful shadow we come together? Our staggered faith asks, indeed, if there be any Providence in this foul deed; and reason and reverence and piety, all that is most cogent in truth and all that is most holy in religion, cry out, — No! there is no Providence in it! No Providence save that which belongs to the blackest crime,- nó Providence save that which permits the foulest cruelty to wreak its demoniac spirit on unoffending innocence, and does not, by miraculous interposition, stay the stealthy assassin's blow,- no Providence save that which always surrounds the dreadful fact of sin, and by which sin is made, in its last desperate madness, to overleap all bounds, even of its own appointing, and to bring down upon itself, in its own destruction, all the

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