Crime Is in the Land .--In these days when vice and crime of every form are rapidly increasing, there is a tendency to become so familiar with existing conditions that we lose sight of their cause and of their significance. More intoxicating liquors are used today than have ever been used heretofore. In the horrible details of revolting drunkenness and terrible crime, the newspapers give but a partial report of the story of the resultant lawlessness. Violence is in the land.-- Drunkenness and Crime, page 3.
The Testimony of the Judiciary .--The relation of crime to intemperance is well understood by men who have to deal with those who transgress the laws of the land. In the words of a Philadelphia judge: "We can trace four fifths of the crimes that are committed to the influence of rum. There is not one case in twenty where a man is tried for his life, in which rum is not the direct or indirect cause of the murder. Rum and blood, I mean the shedding of blood, go hand in hand."-- Drunkenness and Crime, page 7.
High Percentage of Crime Attributable to Liquor .--Nine tenths of those who are taken to prison are those who have learned to drink.-- Review and Herald, May 8, 1894.
Sequence of Drinking and Crime .--When the appetite for spirituous liquor is indulged, the man voluntarily places to his lips the draft which debases below the level of the brute him who was made in the image of God. Reason is paralyzed, the
intellect is benumbed, the animal passions are excited, and then follow crimes of the most debasing character.-- Testimonies, vol. 3, p. 561.
Why Alcohol and Crime Are Related .--Those who frequent the saloons that are open to all who are foolish enough to tamper with the deadly evil they contain, are following the path that leads to eternal death. They are selling themselves, body, soul, and spirit, to Satan. Under the influence of the drink they take, they are led to do things from which, if they had not tasted the maddening drug, they would have shrunk in horror. When they are under the influence of the liquid poison, they are in Satan's control. He rules them, and they co-operate with him.--Letter 166, 1903.
Nature of Crimes Committed Under Alcohol .--The result of liquor drinking is demonstrated by the awful murders that take place. How often it is found that theft, incendiarism, murder, were committed under the influence of liquor. Yet the liquor curse is legalized, and works untold ruin in the hands of those who love to tamper with that which ruins not only the poor victim, but his whole family.-- Review and Herald, May 1, 1900.
Houses of prostitution, dens of vice, criminal courts, prisons, almshouses, insane asylums, hospitals, all are, to a great degree, filled as a result of the liquor seller's work. Like the mystic Babylon of the Apocalypse, he is dealing in "slaves, and souls of men." Behind the liquor seller stands the mighty destroyer of souls, and every act which earth or hell can devise is employed to draw human beings under his power.
In the city and the country, on the railway trains, on the great steamers, in places of business, in the halls of pleasure, in the medical dispensary, even in the church on the sacred Communion table, his traps are set. Nothing is left undone to create and to foster the desire for intoxicants. On almost
every corner stands the public house with its brilliant lights, its welcome and good cheer, inviting the workingman, the wealthy idler, and the unsuspecting youth. Day by day, month by month, year by year, the work goes on.-- Drunkenness and Crime, page 8.
The Drinker Not Excusable .--While intoxicated, every degree of crime has been committed, and yet the perpetrators have been excused in many instances, because they knew not what they were doing. This does not lessen the guilt of the criminal. If by his own hand he puts the glass to his lips, and deliberately takes that which he knows will destroy his reasoning faculties, he becomes responsible for all the injury he does while intoxicated, at the very moment he lets his appetite control him, and he barters away his reasoning faculties for intoxicating drinks. It was his own act which brought him even below the brutes, and crimes committed when he is in a state of intoxication should be punished as severely as though the person had all the power of his reasoning faculties.-- Spiritual Gifts, vol. 4, p. 125.
Drunkenness and Crime Before the Flood and Now .-- The evils that are so apparent at the present time, are the same that brought destruction to the antediluvian world. "In the days that were before the Flood" one of the prevailing sins was drunkenness. From the record in Genesis we learn that "the earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence." Crime reigned supreme; life itself was unsafe. Men whose reason was dethroned by intoxicating drink, thought little of taking the life of a human being.
"As the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be." The drunkenness and the crime that now prevail, have been foretold by the Saviour Himself. We are living in the closing days of this earth's history. It is a most solemn time. Everything betokens the soon return of our Lord.-- Review and Herald, Oct. 25, 1906.
God's Judgments in Our Day .--Because of the wickedness that follows largely as the result of the use of liquor, the judgments of God are falling upon our earth today.-- Counsels on Health, page 432.
San Francisco's Object Lesson .--For a time after the great earthquake along the coast of California, the authorities in San Francisco and in some of the smaller cities and towns ordered the closing of all liquor saloons. So marked were the effects of this strictly enforced ordinance, that the attention of thinking men throughout America, and notably on the Pacific Coast, was directed to the advantages that would result from a permanent closing of all saloons. During many weeks following the earthquake in San Francisco, very little drunkenness was seen. No intoxicating drinks were sold. The disorganized and unsettled state of affairs gave the city officials reason to expect an abnormal increase of disorder and crime, and they were greatly surprised to find the opposite true. Those from whom was expected much trouble, gave but little. This remarkable freedom from violence and crime was traceable largely to the disuse of intoxicants.
The editors of some of the leading dailies took the position that it would be for the permanent betterment of society and for the upbuilding of the best interests of the city, were the saloons to remain closed forever. But wise counsel was swept aside, and within a few short weeks permission was given the liquor dealers to reopen their places of business, upon the payment of a considerably higher license than had formerly been paid into the city treasury.
In the calamity that befell San Francisco, the Lord designed to wipe out the liquor saloons that have been the cause of so much evil, so much misery and crime; and yet the guardians of the public welfare have proved unfaithful to their trust, by legalizing the sale of liquor. . . . They know that in doing this, they are virtually licensing the commission of crime; and
yet their knowledge of this sure result deters them not. . . . The people of San Francisco must answer at the judgment bar of God for the reopening of the liquor saloons in that city. -- Review and Herald, Oct. 25, 1906.
Significance of Present-Day Conditions .--Notwithstanding the many evidences of the increase of crime and lawlessness, men seldom stop to think seriously of the meaning of these things. Almost without exception, men boast of the enlightenment and progress of the present age.
Upon those to whom God has given great light, rests the solemn responsibility of calling the attention of others to the significance of the increase of drunkenness and crime. They should also bring before the minds of others the Scriptures that plainly portray the conditions which will exist just prior to the second coming of Christ. Faithfully should they uplift the divine standard, and raise their voices in protest against the sanctioning of the liquor traffic by legal enactment.-- Drunkenness and Crime, page 3.
Liquor Traffic Breeds Dishonesty and Violence .--In every phase of the liquor-selling business, there is dishonesty and violence. The houses of liquor dealers are built with the wages of unrighteousness, and upheld by violence and oppression. -- Review and Herald, May 1, 1894.
Millions Spent to Buy Wretchedness and Death .--"Woe unto him that buildeth his house by unrighteousness, and his chambers by wrong; . . . that saith, I will build me a wide house and large chambers, and cutteth him out windows; and it is ceiled with cedar, and painted with vermilion. Shalt thou reign, because thou closest thyself in cedar? . . . Thine eyes and thine heart are not but for thy covetousness, and for to shed innocent blood, and for oppression, and for violence, to do it."
This Scripture pictures the work of those who manufacture and who sell intoxicating liquor. Their business means robbery. For the money they receive no useful equivalent is returned. Every dollar they add to their gains has brought a curse to the spender.
Every year millions upon millions of gallons of intoxicating liquors are consumed. Millions upon millions of dollars are spent in buying wretchedness, poverty, disease, degradation, lust, crime, and death. For the sake of gain, the liquor dealer deals out to his victims that which corrupts and destroys mind and body. He entails on the drunkard's family poverty and wretchedness.--Drunkenness and Crime, pages 7, 8.
A Contrasting Economic Status .--The drunkard is capable of better things. God has entrusted to him talents with which to glorify God; but his fellow men have laid a snare for his soul, and built themselves up out of his property. They have lived in luxury while their poor brethren whom they have robbed, lived in poverty and degradation. But God will require for all this at the hand of him who has helped to speed the drunkard on the way to ruin.--Undated Manuscript 54.
Lawmakers and Liquor Dealers Held Financially Responsible .--Lawmakers and liquor dealers may wash their hands as did Pilate, but they will not be clean from the blood of souls. The ceremony of washing their hands will not cleanse them when by their influence or agency, they have helped to make men drunkards. They will be held accountable for the millions of dollars that have been wasted in consuming the consumers. No one can blind himself to the terrible results of the drink traffic. The daily papers show that the wretchedness, the poverty, the crime, that result from this traffic, are not cunningly devised fables, and that hundreds of men are growing rich off the pittances of the men they are sending to perdition by their dreadful drink business. O that a public sentiment might be created that would put an end to the drink
traffic, close the saloons, and give these maddened men a chance to think on eternal realities!-- Review and Herald, May 29, 1894.
Schools Could Have Been Established .--Think of the money wasted in saloons, where men sell their reason for that which places them wholly under Satan's control. What a change there would be in society if this money were used to establish schools where children and youth would be given instruction in Bible lines, taught how to help their fellow beings, how to seek and save the lost!
There is a work to be done for all classes of society. . . . We are not to forget the ministers, lawyers, senators, judges, many of whom use strong drink and tobacco. . . . Ask them to give the money they would otherwise spend for the harmful indulgences of liquor and tobacco, to the establishment of institutions where children and youth can be prepared to fill positions of usefulness in the world.--Letter 25, 1902.
The Starving Might Be Fed .--The cries of the starving millions in our world would soon be hushed if the money put into the tills of the liquor sellers were spent in alleviating the sufferings of humanity. But the evil is constantly increasing. The youth are being educated to love the vile stuff, and this is ruining them, soul and body. The work they might do in God's vineyard they refuse to do.--Manuscript 139, 1899.
Missions Might Have Been Established .--Think of the thousands and millions of dollars that are invested in drink that will make a man like a brute, and destroy his reason. . . . All this money could accomplish untold good if it were used in the support of missions in the dark places of our world. God is being robbed of that which is rightfully His. --Manuscript 38 1/2, 1905.
Publications Could Have Been Increased .--When we obey the injunction of the apostle, "Whether therefore ye eat, or
drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God," thousands of dollars which are now sacrificed upon the altar of hurtful lust will flow into the Lord's treasury, multiplying publications in different languages to be scattered like the leaves of autumn. Missions will be established in other nations, and then will the followers of Christ be indeed the light of the world.-- Signs of the Times, Aug. 13, 1874.
Intemperance Increased by Holidays .--Drunkenness, rioting, violence, crime, murder, come as the result of man selling his reason. The numerous holidays increase the evils of intemperance. These holidays are no help to morality or to religion. On them men spend in drink the money that should be used to supply the necessities of their families; and the liquor sellers reap their harvest.
When drink is in, reason is out. This is the hour and power of darkness, when all crime becomes possible, and the whole human machinery is controlled by a power from beneath, when soul and body are brought under the control of passion. And what can stay this passion? What can hinder it? These souls have no certain anchorage. Holidays are leading them on to temptation; for on a holiday many think that it is their privilege, because it is a holiday, to do as they please. --Manuscript 17, 1898.
Millions for the Devil's Treasury .--Look at those that drink wine and beer and strong drink. Let them reckon up how much money they spend in this. How many thousands and millions of dollars have gone into the devil's treasury to perpetuate wickedness, and to carry on dissolution, corruption, and crime.--Manuscript 20, 1894.
Moderate Drinking .--Moderate drinking is the school in which men are receiving an education for the drunkard's career.-- Review and Herald, March 25, 1884.
God's Blessings Changed to a Curse .--Our Creator has bestowed His bounties upon man with a liberal hand. Were all these gifts of Providence wisely and temperately employed, poverty, sickness, and distress would be well-nigh banished from the earth. But alas, we see on every hand the blessings of God changed to a curse by the wickedness of men.
There is no class guilty of greater perversion and abuse of His precious gifts than are those who employ the products of the soil in the manufacture of intoxicating liquors. The nutritive grains, the healthful, delicious fruits, are converted into beverages that pervert the senses and madden the brain. As a result of the use of these poisons, thousands of families are deprived of the comforts and even the necessaries of life, acts of violence and crime are multiplied, and disease and death hurry myriads of victims to a drunkard's grave.-- Gospel Workers, pages 385, 386.
Marriage Vows Melted in the Fiery Liquid .--Look upon the drunkard's home. Mark the squalid poverty, the wretchedness, the unutterable woe that are reigning there. See the once happy wife fleeing before her maniac husband. Hear her plead for mercy as the cruel blows fall on her shrinking form. Where are the sacred vows made at the marriage altar? where is the love to cherish, the strength to protect her now? Alas, these have been melted like precious pearls in the fiery liquid, the cup of abominations! Look upon those half-naked children. Once they were cherished tenderly. No wintry storm, nor the cold breath of the world's contempt and scorn, was permitted to approach them. A father's care, a mother's love, made their home a paradise. Now all is changed. Day by day the cries of agony wrenched from the lips of the drunkard's wife and children go up to heaven.-- Review and Herald, Nov. 8, 1881.
His Manhood Is Gone .--Look at the drunkard. See what liquor has done for him. His eyes are bleared and bloodshot.
His countenance is bloated and besotted. His gait is staggering. The sign of Satan's working is written all over him. Nature herself protests that she knows him not; for he has perverted his God-given powers, and prostituted his manhood by indulgence in drink.-- Review and Herald, May 8, 1894.
An Expression of Satan's Violence .--Thus he [Satan] works when he entices men to sell the soul for liquor. He takes possession of body, mind, and soul, and it is no longer the man, but Satan, who acts. And the cruelty of Satan is expressed as the drunkard lifts his hand to strike down the wife he has promised to love and cherish as long as life shall last. The deeds of the drunkard are an expression of Satan's violence.-- Medical Ministry, page 114.
Indulgence in intoxicating liquor places a man wholly under the control of the demon who devised this stimulant in order to deface and destroy the moral image of God.--Manuscript 1, 1899.
Calmness and Patience Lost .--It is not possible for the intemperate man to possess a calm, well-balanced character, and if he handles dumb animals, the extra cut of the whip which he gives God's creatures, reveals the disturbed condition of his digestive organs. In the home circle the same spirit is seen.--Letter 17, 1895.
The Shame and Curse of Every Land .--The bleared, besotted wrecks of humanity--souls for whom Christ died, and over whom angels weep--are everywhere. They are a blot on our boasted civilization. They are the shame and curse and peril of every land.-- The Ministry of Healing , page 330.
The Wife Robbed, the Children Starved .--The drunkard has no knowledge of what he is doing when under the influence of the maddening draft, and yet he who sells him that
which makes him irresponsible, is protected by the law in his work of destruction. It is legal for him to rob the widow of the food she requires to sustain life. It is legal for him to entail starvation upon the family of his victim, to send helpless children into the streets to beg for a penny or to beseech for a morsel of bread. Day by day, month by month, year by year, these shameful scenes are re-enacted, until the conscience of the liquor dealer is seared as with a red-hot iron. The tears of suffering children, the agonized cry of the mother, only serve to exasperate the rum seller. . . .
The liquor dealer will not hesitate to collect the debts of the drunkard from his suffering family, and will take the very necessaries from the home to pay the drink bill of the deceased husband and father. What is it to him if the children of the dead starve? He looks upon them as debased and ignorant creatures, who have been abused, kicked about, and degraded; and he has no care for their welfare. But the God that rules in the heavens has not lost sight of the first cause or the last effect of the inexpressible misery and debasement that have come upon the drunkard and his family. The ledger of heaven contains every item of the history.-- Review and Herald, May 15, 1894.
The Drinker Responsible for His Guilt .--Let not the man who indulges in drink think that he will be able to cover his defilement by casting the blame upon the liquor dealer; for he will have to answer for his sin and for the degradation of his wife and children. "They that forsake the Lord shall be consumed."-- Review and Herald, May 8, 1894.
In the Shadow of Liquor .--Day by day, month by month, year by year, the work goes on. Fathers and husbands and brothers, the stay and hope and pride of the nation, are steadily passing into the liquor dealer's haunts, to be sent back wrecked and ruined.
More terrible still, the curse is striking the very heart of
the home. More and more, women are forming the liquor habit. In many a household, little children, even in the innocence and helplessness of babyhood, are in daily peril through the neglect, the abuse, the vileness of drunken mothers. Sons and daughters are growing up under the shadow of this terrible evil. What outlook for their future but that they will sink even lower than their parents?-- The Ministry of Healing, page 339.
The Drinker Under Satan's Control .--Men who use liquor make themselves the slaves of Satan. Satan tempts those who occupy positions of trust on railways, on steamships, those who have charge of the boats or cars laden with people flocking to idolatrous amusement, to indulge perverted appetite, and thus forget God and His laws. He offers tempting bribes to allure them, that by indulging wrong habits and appetites, they may place themselves where he can control their reason, as a workman handles an instrument. Then he works to destroy the pleasure lovers.
Thus men co-operate with Satan, as his agents, his instruments. They cannot see what they are about. Signals are made incorrectly, and cars collide with each other. Then comes horror, mutilation, and death. This condition of things will become more and more marked. The daily papers will relate many terrible accidents. Yet the saloons will be made just as enticing. Liquor will still be sold to the poor tempted soul who has lost the power to stand up and say, I am a man, but who says by his actions, I have no self-control. I cannot resist temptation. All such have severed their connection with God, and are the dupes of Satan's deception.--Manuscript 17, 1898.
Judgment Impaired Through Liquor .--Liquor drinkers are under Satan's destroying influence. He presents to them
his false ideas, and no confidence can be placed in their judgment.-- Review and Herald, May 1, 1900.
Some official on a railway train neglects to heed a signal, or misinterprets an order. On goes the train; there is a collision, and many lives are lost. Or a steamer is run aground, and passengers and crew find a watery grave. When the matter is investigated, it is found that someone at an important post was under the influence of drink.-- The Ministry of Healing, page 331.
God Holds the Drinker Responsible .--Are the men who command the great ocean steamers, who have the control of railways, strict temperance men? Are their brains free from the influence of intoxicants? If not, the accidents occurring under their management will be charged to them by the God of heaven, whose property men and women are.-- Review and Herald,May 1, 1900.
Men on whom devolve grave responsibilities in safeguarding their fellow men from accident and harm, are often untrue to their trust. Because of indulgence in tobacco and liquor, they do not keep the mind clear and composed as did Daniel in the courts of Babylon. They becloud the brain by using stimulating narcotics, and temporarily lose their reasoning faculties. Many a shipwreck upon the high seas can be traced to liquor drinking.
Time and again have unseen angels protected vessels on the broad ocean because on board there were some praying passengers who had faith in God's keeping power. The Lord has power to hold in abeyance the angry waves so impatient to destroy and engulf His children.--Manuscript 153, 1902.
To Rebuke Liquor Drinking .--We have need of men who, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, will rebuke gambling and liquor drinking, which are such prevalent evils in these last days.--Manuscript 117, 1907.
The Only Safe Course .--How many frightful accidents occur through the influence of drink. . . . What is the portion of this terrible intoxicant that any man can take, and be safe with the lives of human beings? He can be safe only as he abstains from drink. He should not have his mind confused with drink. No intoxicant should pass his lips; then if disaster comes, men in responsible places can do their best, and meet their record with satisfaction, whatever may be the issue.-- Review and Herald, May 29, 1894.
They Have Sold Their Will Power .--There is in the world a multitude of degraded human beings, who have, by yielding in their youth to the temptation to use tobacco and alcohol, poisoned the tissues of the human structure, and perverted their reasoning powers, until the result is just as Satan meant it to be. The faculties of thought are clouded. The victims yield to the temptation for alcohol, and they sell what reason they have for a glass of liquor.
See that man bereft of reason. What is he? He is a slave to the will of Satan. The arch apostate imbues him with his own attributes. He is a slave to licentiousness and violence. There is no crime that he will not commit; for he has put into his mouth that which has intoxicated him, and made him, while under its influence, a demon.
Look at our young men. And I write now what causes my heart to ache. They have lost their will power. Their nerves are enfeebled, because their power is exhausted. The ruddy glow of health is not upon their countenances. The healthy sparkle of the eye is gone. Its luster is lost. The wine they have drunk has enfeebled the memory. They are like persons aged in years. The brain is no longer able to produce its rich treasures when required.--Manuscript 17, 1898.
A Moral Sin and a Physical Disease .--Among the victims
of intemperance are men of all classes and all professions. Men of high station, of eminent talents, of great attainments, have yielded to the indulgence of appetite, until they are helpless to resist temptation. Some of them who were once in the possession of wealth are without home, without friends, in suffering, misery, disease, and degradation. They have lost their self-control. Unless a helping hand is held out to them, they will sink lower and lower. With these self-indulgence is not only a moral sin, but a physical disease.-- The Ministry of Healing, page 172.
In a Desperate Situation .--The man who has formed the habit of using intoxicants is in a desperate situation. His brain is diseased, his will power is weakened. So far as any power in himself is concerned, his appetite is uncontrollable. He cannot be reasoned with or persuaded to deny himself.-- The Ministry of Healing, page 344.
Body and Soul in Slavery .--Drinking houses are scattered all over the cities and towns. . . . The traveler enters the public house with his reason, with ability to walk in an upright manner; but look at him as he leaves. The luster is gone from his eye. The power to walk uprightly is gone; he reels to and fro like a ship at sea. His reasoning power is paralyzed, the image of God is destroyed. The poisoning, maddening draft has left a brand upon him. . . . Body and soul he is in slavery, and he cannot distinguish between right and wrong. The liquor dealer has put his bottle to his neighbor's lips, and under its influence he is full of cruelty and murder, and in his madness actually commits murder.
He is brought before an earthly tribunal, and those who legalized the traffic are forced to deal with the results of their own work. They authorized by law the giving to this man a draft that would turn him from a sane man into a madman, and yet now it is necessary for them to send him to prison and to the gallows for his crime. His wife and children are left
in destitution and poverty, to become the charge of the community in which they live. Soul and body the man is lost,-- cut off from earth, and with no hope of heaven. . . .
No Strength to Resist Temptation .--The victims of the drink habit become so maddened under the influence of liquor that they are willing to sell their reason for a glass of whisky. They do not keep the commandment, "Thou shalt have no other gods before Me." Their moral power is so weakened that they have no strength to resist temptation, and their desire for drink is so strong that it eclipses all other desires, and they have no realization of the fact that God requires them to love Him with all their hearts. They are practical idolaters; for whatever alienates the affections from the Creator, whatever weakens and deadens moral power, usurps His throne, and receives the service that is due to Him alone. In all these vile idolatries Satan is worshiped.
He who tarries at the wine is playing the game of life with Satan. He it is who made evil men his agents, so that those who begin the drink habit may be made into drunkards. He has his plans laid that when the brain is confused with liquor, he will drive the drunkard to desperation, and cause him to commit some atrocious crime. In the idol he has set up for the man to worship is all pollution and crime, and the worship of the idol will ruin both soul and body, and extend its evil influence to the wife and children of the drunkard. The drunkard's corrupt tendencies are transmitted to his posterity, and through them to the coming generations.
A Demon Power at Work .--But are not the rulers of the land largely responsible for the aggravated crimes, the current of deadly evil, that is the result of the liquor traffic? Is it not their duty and in their power to remove this deadly evil? Satan has formed his plans, and he counsels with legislators, and they receive his advice, and thus keep in activity, through legislative enactments, a multiplicity of evil, which results in
much misery and crime of so terrible a character that human pen cannot portray it. A demon power is at work through human instruments, and men are tempted to indulge appetite until they lose all control of themselves. The sight of a drunken man, were the sight not so common, would arouse public indignation, and cause the drink traffic to be swept away; but the power of Satan has so hardened human hearts, so perverted human judgment, that men can look upon the woe, the crime, the poverty, which floods the world through the drink traffic, and remain indifferent. . . .
Day after day, month after month, year after year, Satan's death traps are set in our communities, at our doors, at the street corners, wherever it is possible to catch souls, that their moral power may be destroyed, and the image of God obliterated, and they be sunken in degradation far below the level of the brute. Souls are imperiled and perishing, and where is the active energy, the determined effort on the part of Christians, to raise a warning signal, to enlighten their fellow men, to save their perishing brothers? We are not to talk of devising methods to save those who are dead and lost, but to move upon those who are not yet beyond the reach of sympathy and help. . . .
By legalizing the liquor traffic, the law gives its sanction to the downfall of the soul, and refuses to stop the traffic that floods the world with evil. Let lawmakers consider whether or not all this imperiling of human life, of physical power and mental vision, is unavoidable. Is all this destruction of human life necessary?-- Review and Herald, May 29, 1894.
The Responsibility of the Liquor Dealer .--Those who sell intoxicating liquor to their fellow men . . . receive the earnings of the drunkard, and give him no equivalent for his money. Instead of this, they give him that which maddens him, which makes him act the fool, and turns him into a demon of evil and cruelty. . . .
But angels of God have witnessed every step in the downward path, and have traced every consequence that resulted from a man's placing the bottle to his neighbor's lips. The liquor dealer is written in the records among those whose hands are full of blood. He is condemned for keeping on hand the poisonous draft by which his neighbor is tempted to ruin, and by which homes are filled with wretchedness and degradation. The Lord holds the liquor dealer responsible for every penny that comes to his till out of the earnings of the poor drunkard, who has lost all moral power, who has sunk his manhood in drink.-- Review and Herald, May 8, 1894.
He Must Answer to God .--No matter what may be the wealth, power, or position of a man in the sight of the world, no matter whether or not he has been permitted by the law of the land to sell poisonous drinks to his neighbor, he will be held accountable in the sight of heaven for degrading the soul that has been redeemed by Christ, and will be arraigned before the judgment for lowering a character that ought to have reflected the image of God, to reflect the image of that which is below the brute creation.
In enticing men to educate themselves in the liquor habit, the rum seller is effectually taking away the righteousness of the soul, and leading men to become the abject slaves of Satan. The Lord Jesus, the Prince of Life, is in controversy with Satan, the prince of darkness. Christ declares that His mission is to lift men up. . . .
Jesus left the royal courts of heaven, and laid aside His own glory, and clothed His divinity with humanity, that He might come into close connection with humanity, and by precept and example uplift and ennoble humanity, and restore in the human soul the lost image of God. This is the work of Christ; but what is the influence of those who legalize the liquor traffic? What is the influence of those who put the bottle to their neighbor's lips? Contrast the work of the rum seller
with the work of Jesus Christ, and you will be forced to admit that those who deal in liquor, and those who sustain the traffic, are working in co-partnership with Satan. Through this business they are doing a greater work to perpetuate human woe than are men through any other business in the world. . . .
The rum seller takes the same position as did Cain, and says, "Am I my brother's keeper?" and God says to him as He said to Cain, "The voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto Me from the ground." Rum sellers will be held accountable for the wretchedness that has been brought into the homes of those who were weak in moral power, and who fall through temptation to drink. They will be charged with the misery, the suffering, the hopelessness, brought into the world through the liquor traffic. They will have to answer for the woe and want of the mothers and children who have suffered for food and clothing and shelter, who have buried all hope and joy. He that has a care for the sparrow, and notes its fall to the ground, who clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, will not pass by those who have been formed in His own image, purchased with His own blood, and pay no heed to their suffering cries. God cares for all this wickedness that perpetuates misery and crime. He charges it all up to those whose influence helps to open the door of temptation to the soul.--Undated Manuscript 54.
God's Sentence on the Liquor Seller .--He knows not, nor cares, that the Lord has an account to settle with him. And when his victim is dead, his heart of stone is unmoved.
He has not heeded the instruction, "Ye shall not afflict any widow, or fatherless child. If thou afflict them in any wise, and they cry at all unto Me, I will surely hear their cry; and My wrath shall wax hot, and I will kill you with the sword; and your wives shall be widows, and your children fatherless".-- Review and Herald, May 15, 1894.
There will be no excuse for the liquor dealers in that day
when every man shall receive according to his works. Those who have destroyed life, will by their own life have to pay the penalty. God's law is holy and just and good.--Letter 90, 1908.
Encourage Not the Desire for Stimulants .--Let every soul remember that he is under sacred obligations to God to do his best for his fellow creatures. How careful should everyone be not to create a desire for stimulants. By advising friends and neighbors to take brandy for the sake of their health, they are in danger of becoming agents for the destruction of their friends. Many incidents have come to my attention in which through some simple advice, men and women have become the slaves of the drink habit.
Physicians are responsible for making many drunkards. Knowing what drink will do for its lovers, they have taken upon themselves the responsibility of prescribing it for their patients. Did they reason from cause to effect, they would know that stimulants would have the same effect on every organ of the body as they have on the whole man. What excuse can doctors render for the influence they have exerted in making fathers and mothers drunkards?-- Review and Herald, May 29, 1894.
Warned That They May Escape the Evil Results .--With the awful results of indulgence in intoxicating drink before us, how is it that any man or woman who claims to believe in the word of God, can venture to touch, taste, or handle wine or strong drink? Such a practice is certainly out of harmony with their professed faith. . . .
The Lord has given special directions in His word in reference to the use of wine and strong drink. He has forbidden their use, and enforced His prohibitions with strong warnings and threatenings. But His warning against the use of intoxicating beverages is not the result of the exercise of arbitrary authority. He has warned men, in order that they may escape from the evil that results from indulgence in wine and strong drink. . . .
The liquor traffic is a terrible scourge to our land, and is sustained and legalized by those who profess to be Christians. In thus doing, the churches make themselves responsible for all the results of this death-dealing traffic. The liquor traffic has its root in hell itself, and it leads to perdition. These are solemn considerations.-- Review and Herald, May 1, 1894.
Lessons from the Experience of Nadab and Abihu .--Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, who ministered in the holy office of priesthood, partook freely of wine, and, as was their usual custom, went in to minister before the Lord. The priests who burned incense before the Lord were required to use the fire of God's kindling, which burned day and night, and was never extinguished. God gave explicit directions how every part of His service should be conducted, that all connected with His sacred worship might be in accordance with His holy character. And any deviation from the express directions of God in connection with His holy service was punishable with death. No sacrifice would be acceptable to God which was not salted nor seasoned with divine fire, which represented the communication between God and man that was opened through Jesus Christ alone. The holy fire which was to be put upon the censer was kept burning perpetually. And while the people of God were without, earnestly praying, the incense kindled by the holy fire was to arise before God mingled with their prayers. This incense was an emblem of the mediation of Christ.
Aaron's sons took the common fire which God did not accept, and they offered insult to the infinite God by presenting this strange fire before Him. God consumed them by fire for their positive disregard of His express directions. All their works were as the offering of Cain. There was no divine Saviour represented. Had these sons of Aaron been in full
command of their reasoning faculties they would have discerned the difference between the common and sacred fire. The gratification of appetite debased their faculties and so beclouded their intellect that their power of discernment was gone. They fully understood the holy character of the typical service, and the awful solemnity and responsibility assumed of presenting themselves before God to minister in sacred service.
They Were Responsible .--Some may inquire, How could the sons of Aaron have been accountable when their intellects were so far paralyzed by intoxication that they were not able to discern the difference between sacred and common fire? It was when they put the cup to their lips that they made themselves responsible for all their acts committed while under the influence of wine. The indulgence of appetite cost those priests their lives. God expressly forbade the use of wine that would have an influence to becloud the intellect.
"And the Lord spake unto Aaron, saying, Do not drink wine nor strong drink, thou, nor thy sons with thee, when ye go into the tabernacle of the congregation, lest ye die: it shall be a statute forever throughout your generations: and that ye may put difference between holy and unholy, and between unclean and clean; and that ye may teach the children of Israel all the statutes which the Lord hath spoken unto them by the hand of Moses." . . .
Here we have the most plain directions of God, and his reasons for prohibiting the use of wine; that their power of discrimination and discernment might be clear, and in no way confused; that their judgment might be correct, and they be ever able to discern between the clean and unclean. Another reason of weighty importance why they should abstain from anything which would intoxicate, is also given. It would require the full use of unclouded reason to present to the children of Israel all the statutes which God had spoken to them.
Qualifications for Spiritual Leaders .--Anything in eating or drinking which disqualifies the mental powers for healthful and active exercise is an aggravating sin in the sight of God. Especially is this the case with those who minister in holy things, who should at all times be examples to the people, and be in a condition to properly instruct them. . . .
Ministers in the sacred desk, with mouth and lips defiled, dare to take the sacred word of God in their polluted lips. They think God does not notice their sinful indulgence. "Because sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil." God will no more receive a sacrifice from the hands of those who thus pollute themselves, and offer with their service the incense of tobacco and liquor, than He would receive the offering of the sons of Aaron, who offered incense with strange fire.
God has not changed. He is as particular and exact in His requirements now as He was in the days of Moses. But in the sanctuaries of worship in our day, with the songs of praise, the prayers, and the teaching from the pulpit, there is not merely strange fire, but positive defilement. Instead of truth being preached with holy unction from God, it is sometimes spoken under the influence of tobacco and brandy. Strange fire indeed! Bible truth and Bible holiness are presented to the people, and prayers are offered to God, mingled with the stench of tobacco! Such incense is most acceptable to Satan! A terrible deception is this! What an offense in the sight of God! What an insult to Him who is holy, dwelling in light unapproachable!
If the faculties of the mind were in healthful vigor, professed Christians would discern the inconsistency of such worship. Like Nadab and Abihu, their sensibilities are so blunted that they make no difference between the sacred and common. Holy and sacred things are brought down upon a level with
their tobacconized breaths, benumbed brains, and their polluted souls, defiled through indulgence of appetite and passion. Professed Christians eat and drink, smoke and chew tobacco, and become gluttons and drunkards, to gratify appetite, and still talk of overcoming as Christ overcame!-- Redemption; or the Temptation of Christ, pages 82-86.
A Call for Clear-Minded Officials .--How is it with our lawmakers, and the men in our courts of justice? If it was necessary that those who minister in holy office should have clear minds and full control of their reason, is it not also important that those who make and execute the laws of our great nation should have their faculties unclouded? What about the judges and jurors, in whose hands rests the disposing of human life, and whose decisions may condemn the innocent, or turn the criminal loose upon society? Do they not need to have full control of their mental powers? Are they temperate in their habits? If not, they are not fit for such responsible positions. When the appetites are perverted, the mental powers are weakened, and there is danger that men will not rule justly. Is indulgence in that which beclouds the mind less dangerous today than when God placed restrictions upon those who ministered in holy office?-- Christian Temperance and Bible Hygiene, page 19.
When Government Men Betray Their Trust .--Men who make laws to control the people should above all others be obedient to the higher laws which are the foundation of all rule in nations and in families. How important that men who have a controlling power should themselves feel they are under a higher control. They will never feel thus while their minds are weakened by indulgence in narcotics, and strong drink. Those to whom it is entrusted to make and execute laws should have all their powers in vigorous action. They may, by practicing temperance in all things, preserve the clear discrimination between the sacred and common, and have
wisdom to deal with that justice and integrity which God enjoined upon ancient Israel. . . .
Many who are elevated to the highest positions of trust in serving the public are the opposite of this. They are self-serving, and generally indulge in the use of narcotics, and wine and strong drink. Lawyers, jurors, senators, judges, and representative men have forgotten that they cannot dream themselves into a character. They are deteriorating their powers through sinful indulgences. They stoop from their high position to defile themselves with intemperance, licentiousness, and every form of evil. Their powers prostituted by vice open their path for every evil. . . .
Intemperate men should not by vote of the people be placed in positions of trust. Their influence corrupts others, and grave responsibilities are involved. With brain and nerve narcotized by tobacco and stimulus they make a law of their nature, and when the immediate influence is gone there is a collapse. Frequently human life is hanging in the balance; on the decision of men in these positions of trust depends life and liberty, or bondage and despair. How necessary that all who take part in these transactions should be men proved, men of self-culture, men of honesty and truth, of stanch integrity, who will spurn a bribe, who will not allow their judgment or convictions of right to be swerved by partiality or prejudice. Thus saith the Lord, "Thou shalt not wrest the judgment of thy poor in his cause. Keep thee far from a false matter; and the innocent and righteous slay thou not: for I will not justify the wicked. And thou shalt take no gift: for the gift blindeth the wise, and perverteth the words of the righteous."-- Signs of the Times, July 8, 1880.
Only men of strict temperance and integrity should be admitted to our legislative halls and chosen to preside in our courts of justice. Property, reputation, and even life itself, are insecure when left to the judgment of men who are
intemperate and immoral. How many innocent persons have been condemned to death, how many more have been robbed of all their earthly possessions, by the injustice of drinking jurors, lawyers, witnesses, and even judges!-- Signs of the Times, Feb. 11, 1886.
If All Responsible Men Were Temperate .--Should representative men keep the way of the Lord, they would point men to a high and holy standard. Those in positions of trust would be strictly temperate. Magistrates, senators, and judges would have a clear understanding, and their judgment would be sound and unperverted. The fear of the Lord would ever be before them, and they would depend upon a higher wisdom than their own. The heavenly Teacher would make them wise in counsel, and strong to work steadfastly in opposition to all wrong, and to advance that which is right and just and true. The word of God would be their guide, and all oppression would be discarded. Lawmakers and administrators would abide by every good and just law, ever teaching the way of the Lord to do justice and judgment. God is the head of all good and just governments and laws. Those who are entrusted with the responsibility of administering any part of the law, are accountable to God as stewards of His goods. -- Review and Herald, Oct. 1, 1895.
Reason Dethroned at Belshazzar's Feast .--In his pride and arrogancy, with a reckless feeling of security, Belshazzar "made a great feast to a thousand of his lords, and drank wine before the thousand." All the attractions that wealth and power could command, added splendor to the scene. Beautiful women with their enchantments were among the guests in attendance at the royal banquet. Men of genius and education were there. Princes and statesmen drank wine like water, and reveled under its maddening influence. With reason dethroned through shameless intoxication, and with lower impulses and passions now in the ascendancy, the king
himself took the lead in the riotous orgy.-- Prophets and Kings, page 523.
At the very moment when the feasting was at its height, a bloodless hand came forth, and traced on the wall of the banqueting room the doom of the king and his kingdom. "Mene, Mene, Tekel, Upharsin," were the words written, and they were interpreted by Daniel to mean, "Thou art weighed in the balances, and art found wanting. . . . Thy kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians." And the record tells us, "In that night was Belshazzar the king of the Chaldeans slain. And Darius the Median took the kingdom."
Little did Belshazzar think that an unseen Watcher beheld his idolatrous revelry. But there is nothing said or done that is not recorded on the books of heaven. The mystic characters traced by the bloodless hand testify that God is a witness to all we do, and that He is dishonored by feasting and reveling. We cannot hide anything from God. We cannot escape from our accountability to Him. Wherever we are and whatever we do, we are responsible to Him whose we are by creation and by redemption.--Manuscript 50, 1893.
Awful Result of Herod's Dissipation .--In many things Herod had reformed his dissolute life. But the use of luxurious food and stimulating drinks was constantly enervating and deadening the moral as well as the physical powers, and warring against the earnest appeals of the Spirit of God, which had struck conviction to the heart of Herod, arousing his conscience to put away his sins. Herodias was acquainted with the weak points in the character of Herod. She knew that under ordinary circumstances, while his intelligence controlled him, she could not obtain the death of John. . . .
She covered her hatred as best she could, looking forward to the birthday of Herod, which she knew would be an occasion of gluttony and intoxication. Herod's love of luxurious food and wine would give her an opportunity to throw him
off his guard. She would entice him to indulge his appetite, which would arouse passion and lower the tone of the mental and moral character, making it impossible for his deadened sensibilities to see facts and evidences clearly, and make right decisions. She had the most costly preparations made for feasting, and voluptuous dissipation. She was acquainted with the influence of these intemperate feasts upon the intellect and morals. She knew that Herod's indulgence of appetite, pleasure, and amusement would excite the lower passions, and make him spiritless to the nobler demands of effort and duty.
The unnatural exhilaration which intemperance gives to the mind and spirits, lowers the sensibilities to moral improvement, making it impossible for holy impulses to affect the heart, and hold government over the passions, when public opinion and fashion sustain them. Festivities and amusements, dances, and free use of wine, becloud the senses, and remove the fear of God. . . .
As Herod and his lords were feasting and drinking in the pleasure saloon or banqueting hall, Herodias, debased with crime and passion, sent her daughter, dressed in a most enchanting manner, into the presence of Herod and his royal guests. Salome was decorated with costly garlands and flowers. She was adorned with sparkling jewels and flashing bracelets. With little covering and less modesty she danced for the amusement of the royal guests. To their perverted senses, the enchanting appearance of this, to them, vision of beauty and loveliness charmed them. Instead of being governed by enlightened reason, refined taste, or sensitive consciences, the lower qualities of the mind held the guiding reins. Virtue and principle had no controlling power.
The false enchantment of the dizzy scene seemed to take away reason and dignity from Herod and his guests, who were flushed with wine. The music and wine and dancing
had removed the fear and reverence of God from them. Nothing seemed sacred to Herod's perverted senses. He was desirous to make some display which would exalt him still higher before the great men of his kingdom. And he rashly promised, and confirmed his promise with an oath, to give the daughter of Herodias whatever she might ask. . . .
Having obtained so wonderful a promise, she ran to her mother, desiring to know what she should ask. The mother's answer was ready, The head of John the Baptist in a charger. Salome at first was shocked. She did not understand the hidden revenge in her mother's heart. She refused to present such an inhuman request; but the determination of that wicked mother prevailed. Moreover, she bade her daughter make no delay, but hasten to prefer her request before Herod would have time for reflection, and to change his mind. Accordingly, Salome returned to Herod with her terrible petition, "I will that thou give me by and by in a charger the head of John the Baptist. And the king was exceeding sorry; yet for his oath's sake, and for their sakes which sat with him, he would not reject her."
Herod was astonished and confounded. His riotous mirth ceased, and his guests were thrilled with horror at this inhuman request. The frivolities and dissipation of that night cost the life of one of the most eminent prophets that ever bore a message from God to men. The intoxicating cup prepared the way for this terrible crime.-- Review and Herald, March 11, 1873.
No Voice to Save John .--Why was there no voice to be heard in that company to keep Herod from fulfilling his mad vow? They were intoxicated with wine, and to their benumbed senses there was nothing to be reverenced.
Although the royal guests virtually had an invitation to release him from his oath, their tongues seemed paralyzed. Herod himself was under the delusion that he must, in order
to save his own reputation, keep an oath made under the influence of intoxication. Moral principle, the only safeguard of the soul, was paralyzed. Herod and his guests were slaves, held in the lowest bondage to brute appetite. . . .
The mental powers were enervated by the pleasure of sense, which perverted their ideas of justice and mercy. Satan seized upon this opportunity, in the person of Herodias, to lead them to rush into decisions which cost the precious life of one of God's prophets.-- Review and Herald, April 8, 1873.
Divine Warnings .--The Lord cannot bear much longer with an intemperate and perverse generation. There are many solemn warnings in the Scriptures against the use of intoxicating liquors. In the days of old, when Moses was rehearsing the desire of Jehovah concerning His people, there were uttered against the drunkard the following words:
"And it come to pass, when he heareth the words of this curse, that he bless himself in his heart, saying, I shall have peace, though I walk in the imagination of mine heart, to add drunkenness to thirst: the Lord will not spare him, but then the anger of the Lord and His jealousy shall smoke against that man, and all the curses that are written in this book shall lie upon him, and the Lord shall blot out his name from under heaven."
Solomon says: "Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise." "Who hath woe? who hath sorrow? who hath contentions? who hath babbling? who hath wounds without cause? who hath redness of eyes? They that tarry long at the wine; they that go to seek mixed wine. Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his color in the cup, when it moveth itself aright. At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder."
The use of wine among the Israelites was one of the causes
that finally resulted in their captivity. Through the prophet Amos the Lord said to them:
"Woe to them that are at ease in Zion. . . . Ye that put far away the evil day, and cause the seat of violence to come near; that lie upon beds of ivory, and stretch themselves upon their couches, and eat the lambs out of the flock, and the calves out of the midst of the stall; that chant to the sound of the viol, and invent to themselves instruments of music, like David; that drink wine in bowls, and anoint themselves with the chief ointments; but they are not grieved for the affliction of Joseph. Therefore now shall they go captive with the first that go captive, and the banquet of them that stretched themselves shall be removed."
"Woe to thee, O land, when thy king is a child, and thy princes eat in the morning! Blessed art thou, O land, when thy king is the son of nobles, and thy princes eat in due season, for strength, and not for drunkenness!" "It is not for kings, O Lemuel, it is not for kings to drink wine; nor for princes strong drink: lest they drink, and forget the law, and pervert the judgment of any of the afflicted."
These words of warning and command are pointed and decided. Let those in positions of public trust take heed lest through wine and strong drink they forget the law, and pervert judgment. Rulers and judges should ever be in a condition to fulfill the instruction of the Lord: "Ye shall not afflict any widow, or fatherless child. If thou afflict them in any wise, and they cry at all unto Me, I will surely hear their cry; and My wrath shall wax hot, and I will kill you with the sword; and your wives shall be widows, and your children fatherless."
The Lord God of heaven ruleth. He alone is above all authority, over all kings and rulers. The Lord has given special directions in His word in reference to the use of wine and strong drink. He has forbidden their use, and enforced
His prohibitions with strong warnings and threatenings. But His forbidding the use of intoxicating beverages is not an exercise of arbitrary authority. He seeks to restrain men, in order that they may escape from the evil results of indulgence in wine and strong drink. Degradation, cruelty, wretchedness, and strife follow as the natural results of intemperance. God has pointed out the consequences of following this course of evil. This He has done that there may not be a perversion of His laws, and that men may be spared the widespread misery resulting from the course of evil men who, for the sake of gain, self maddening intoxicants.-- Drunkenness and Crime, pages 4-6.