of Moses; if they hesitated in view of the largeness of Christian liberty; if they seemed unwilling to accept the sweetness and light of the good tidings, let us not forget that it was the mistake of men who feared more than they dared to hope, whose estimate of the exceeding awfulness of sin caused them to dwell upon God's vengeance rather than his compassion; and whose dread of evil was so great that, in shutting their hearts against it, they sometimes shut out the good. It is well for us if we have learned to listen to the sweet persuasion of the Beatitudes; but there are crises in all lives which require also the emphatic ‘Thou shalt not’ of the Decalogue which the founders wrote on the gate-posts of their commonwealth. Let us then be thankful for the assurances which the last few years have afforded us that
The Pilgrim spirit is not dead,We have seen it in the faith and trust which no circumstances could shake, in heroic self-sacrifice, in entire consecration to duty. The fathers have lived in their sons. Have we not all known the Winthrops and Brewsters, the Saltonstalls and Sewalls, of old times, in gubernatorial chairs, in legislative halls, around winter camp-fires, in the slow martyrdoms of prison and hospital? The great struggle through which we have passed has taught us how much we owe to the men and women of the Plymouth Colony,—the noblest ancestry that ever a people looked back to with love and reverence. Honor, then, to the Pilgrims! Let their memory be green forever!
But walks in noon's broad light.