Forasmuch as the world is making rapid progress in arts and sciences, and the old fashioned doctrine of the Cross is left so far in the background, and as the style, and more particulaly the principles, of the Old and Testaments are so poor and vague, and so illy suited to the refined taste and feelings of this enlightened generation, and as there is nothing recorded in that book in support of the doctrine and practices peculiar to the present day, and as the ambitious and learned of our age are put to great inconvenience from time to time to prove that they are of God, or employed in his service, and as we cannot reasonably expect that the learned, wealthy and great men of this world will be willing to embrace the religion of him who was meek and lowly, in its present form. Therefore, we have been led to suggest a few alterations and perversions of that holy book; which would, in our opinion, greatly subserve the cause of those who lie in wait to deceive.
BOOK OF PERVERSIONS. CHAPTER 1.
1. Be ye conformed to the world, and be ye not transformed.
2. If the light that be in you came from Theological Seminaries, how great is that light!
3. Go ye into all the world and beg money; he that believeth on you and giveth libera1ly, shall have his charity sounded far abroad in the news-papers.
4. Say ye to him that giveth current money, It shall be well with him. But wo to him that giveth not; call him an Antinomian, a covetous fellow, a publican and a sinner.
5. Go ye into all the world and establish Sunday Schools; and in them mould the minds of the children to your views, and so prepare them for the polls of your country, that succeeding generations may be provided with rulers, from the President down to the path-master, whose religious characters have been formed in your Sunday Schools; and then, verily you shall have your reward*.
6. Go ye into all the world and circulate tracts, and take up collections for the support of Tract Societies, and so enable the officers and agents of that institution to fare sumptuously every day.
7. Go ye into all the world and plead for the missionary cause. But when ye go, take with you purse and scrip, and many coats, with splendid out-fits, with men-servants, and maid-servants, and horses, and chariots, and plenty of money.
8. Say ye unto the people, The race is unto the swift, and the battle is unto the strong.
9. Tell them that the Lord’s temple must be built by might, and by strength, and by the use of means, amid not by the Spirit of the Lord.
10. Tell them that the want of money is the root of all evil; and that the heathen may be evangelized and saved for three dollars each.
11. Say unto them, Ye are redeemed with such corruptible things as silver and gold.
12. It is of him that willeth and of him that runneth.. For the Missionary Society have willed, and their hirelings.. have ran; and it is not of him that sheweth mercy.
13. Receive ye honor one of another. Be ye called Rabbi,. Doctor of Divinity, Master of Arts, Reverends, Presidents, Vice Presidents, Secretaries, Treasurers, Agents, and by all flattering titles; for the laborer is worthy of his hire.
14. And when there cometh into your assemblies one who is rich, with costly apparel, say unto him, Come up hither; peradventure he will give you of his abundance. But if a poor man come in, tell him to sit down there on thy footstool.
15. Be ye active in forming all manner of societies, in the name of religion; and sell ye birthrights for money and for price.
16. Tell the people, (and make them believe it, if you can,) that you have charge of the Lord’s treasury, and that he has sent you to collect funds for him; and that he is at present greatly straitened for want of cash to carry on his purposes.
17. And when you get the people’s money in the Lord’s name, be ye mindful and divide it among yourselves; for ye must have your reward.
18. True religion, and undefiled before men like yourselves, is to visit the widow and fatherless, and to extort from them the last farthing they possess, and then make your boast of k in the public prints; so shall ye glory in your shame.
* See Rev. Dr. E. S. Ely’s 4th of July oration.
NEW VERNON, N. Y.,
October 9, 1833.
Elder Gilbert Beebe
Editorials Volume 1
Pages 114 – 116