to the moment when over his lifeless body strong men wept, saluting him as one of the great commonwealth which gave him birth; but for these details we have no space. We shall terminate this sketch by some quotations from his letters to his mother and another person very dear to him, which display in an unmistakable light that crowning grace of manhood—perfect reliance upon God, and a sure realization of the only source from which he could expect hope and happiness. We present these passages without comment. Let the careless reader not omit a perusal of them. In every line a pure spirit speaks and shows the loveliness of trust and humility. From “Newtown, March 23, 1862. Tell Ma that I thought of her and her teachings; and that if she does hear of my fall, she must not think of me as one who died without hope.”April 10, 1862. In the thickest of the fight I know that God can hear the silent prayer of the greatest sinner, and, through the blood of Him who saved the dying thief upon the Cross, can in like manner translate the soul of the warrior from the battle-field to a sinless, happy home in heaven. December 11, 1862. We are on the verge of a great battle or a retreat. . . . I trust that, if I fall, the great Father of Spirits will take me to Himself, sinner though I am, through the merits of a Saviour whose love I have so often slighted. March 14, 1863. You must pray for me, as I know you do. I feel, somehow, a need which cannot be supplied in this world. . . . Yes, it may be the first whisperings of that mysterious voice whose power can yet turn my heart from its stubborn sinfulness, and to that Power I go, with humbler heart and deeper prayer than ever before. March 31, 1863. These days in camp seem very dreary to me, separated from you. . . . You must redouble your prayers for me, that I may be drawn to Christ. I feel more on this subject than ever before in my life. It is a hard struggle to me, and you cannot know fully the hopeless feeling of one who has been for years so sinful as I have been. But the promise of our Saviour is to the vilest of sinners, and I feel that I am one of them. I have been and am so wicked that I feel as if it is almost impious in me to approach the throne of grace and hope for mercy. I trust to be spared to atone, in some measure, in the future for the past; but if God in His wisdom takes me from you, we will hope to meet in that bright world for which
This text is part of:
Table of Contents:
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.
An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.