Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 6

Saturday. 31st.

Monday. 2d.

Sunday. November 1st. CFA Sunday. November 1st. CFA
Sunday. November 1st.

Miss Elizabeth Adams left us this morning for the purpose of going to Mrs. Miller’s. I occupied myself variously. Attended divine service all day. Heard Mr. Frothingham from Luke 22. 20. “This cup is the new Testament in my blood which is shed for you.” A Communion Sermon. He explained the nature of the word Testament as applied to the two parts of the Bible, said they should rather be called the Old and New Covenants. But the Communion was the legacy left, that was the act testifying the spirit in which the Saviour’s mission was fulfilled. My attention was not fixed and I can give no good idea of the discourse. In the afternoon, a son of J. T. Buckingham’s preached.1 Matthew 5. 48. “Be ye therefore perfect as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.” A young man’s Sermon full of all sorts of things with many allusions to passing topics the nature of which he cannot possibly comprehend. But delivered with a degree of confidence and unhesitating accuracy which would puzzle the wisest to assume. Yet such is the excellence of the Sermon on the Mount from which he drew his text that hardly any person can preach from it without falling into a train of good ideas and delivering good morality.

Read a Sermon of Dr. Barrow from Psalm 90. 12. “So teach us to number our days that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.” A good moral discourse upon the shortness of life and the fleeting nature of its purposes and passions. True every word of it and yet it made me dull. The happiness of man is made up of such shadows as almost to discourage one in the pursuit of good yet it is our duty enjoined upon us here to perform what is given to us to do diligently. I know not what men do who disbelieve in a merciful and yet just Creator. Evening, Miss Miller and E. C. Adams came in and passed the evening. I finished several papers.

1.

Probably Rev. Edgar Buckingham, Harvard 1831, a graduate of the Divinity School in 1835 ( Harvard Quinquennial Cat. ).