Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 5

Saturday. 26th.

Monday. 28th.

Sunday. 27th. CFA Sunday. 27th. CFA
Sunday. 27th.

I both eat and drank too much for my wellbeing, yesterday. The consequence was that I did not feel in my usual good order today. My morning was taken up in reading the Exalté—An animated but rapid and rather superficial sketch of a French enthusiast placed in the midst of the scenes of the last Century towards its close.

Attended divine service and heard Mr. Frothingham all day. In the morning, a very good Sermon upon the virtues of patience. James 1. 4. “Let patience have her perfect work that ye may be perfect and entire wanting nothing.” Perhaps there is no virtue which would require more of the lessons of religion than this, for a want of it very often distinguishes those who claim a very high position in the ranks of piety. Afternoon, Matthew. 10. 34, part of 35. “Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace but a sword. For I am come to set at variance.” This is one of those singular texts in the Bible upon which much misconstruction can be put. Was it supposed that the Saviour meant that his great object in coming was to produce discord, it not only would make a startling doctrine but one entirely at war with every thing that otherwise distinguishes his char-303acter and precepts. He was looking rather to the consequences which would follow in point of fact, and which eighteen hundred years of the world have since developed. The preacher showed why the doubt that has been entertained of the benefits of the dispensation as compared with this mass of evil is groundless.

Read also a Discourse of Atterbury’s. Mark 16. 20. “And they went forth and preached every where; the Lord working with them and confirming the word with signs following.” The subject was miracles as being the most proper mode of spreading the truth, 1. by the common opinion of mankind respecting them, 2. by the general nature of them as evidence, 3. by the peculiar properties they possess for this purpose.

Evening quiet at home. Read the remainder of Desodry. It is an instructive book by presenting in strong contrast the two characters, one founded upon the practice of general principles without regard to system, the other upon the adoption with enthusiasm of particular theories.