A Sermon Delivered by ELEAZAR BALES, 8-19-1880Westfield, Indiana Conservative Friends Meeting
Previously Unpublished Material Transcribed from Archival Manuscripts by Tom Roberts, Made available to the editor by Edsel Burdge.

This is The Quaker Homiletics Online Anthology, Part 3: The 19th Century

I feel like alluding in a few words in relation to spiritual gifts of our Savior. After he had fulfilled all righteousness he gave spiritual gifts to men. Some apostles, some to prophets, some to evangelists and teachers. It was designed for the edification of the church, or the people constituting the church. Feeling that a little portion or measure of this spiritual gift has been dispensed unto me, poor and unworthy as I am and feel myself to be, it has seemed to me in my small measure my duty to persuade people to be Christians, for it is an awful thought to leave this world without a hope for the bereaved relatives that they have gone to rest. Therefore I have felt it required of me to encourage and persuade people to become willing to follow the Lord Jesus Christ who has done so much for them here, for the support of these temporal bodies, and gives ability for the enjoyment of heaven here after what is there in our way dear brothers and sisters? We are all accountable to God for sin; what is there in our way from being just what God would have us be, loving one another and our Heavenly Master above all, doing just as Christians should do; loving one another as they love themselves, doing to others as we would have them do to us is a law that cannot be changed, neither should we desire to change it, because it is based on the principal of justice and equity. Therefore I desire to encourage and persuade sinners to become Christians seeking not after the reward of this world, but for an eternal reward that fadeth not away, hereafter. I have lived many long years and the journey has been attended with many trials and besetments, so many kinds of losses and crosses, even enemies with in and enemies with out. The traveler must need expect these trials and tribulations on his journey. Many no doubt many have embarked on this journey and experienced these besetting seasons, become discouraged and almost ready to look back from whence they have come from that land of bondage and sin. Dear brothers and sisters do not look back but press on in the faith trusting the Great Leader for ability to travel on through all opposition that you may meet with on your journey. The old accuser is seeking the destruction of the whole human family, and I have thought sometimes in his transformation that he endeavors to make his way pleasant and smooth to the traveler, transforming himself as it were into an angel of light that he might deceive us. We are so apt to be drawn away and follow the teaching of the enemy. We know him to be our enemy for he proved himself to be son in the destruction of our first parents. He was a liar and went forth with a lie in his mouth to deceive them. They being deceived, lost the crown of innocence. That which they had lost they could not confer upon their children, so it is we lost the crown in consequence of that fall of Adam. It does appear to me sometimes that the enemy is at work in the Church of Christ. May we become watchful, guarding against that untiring enemy, guarding against indulging in carnal desires that are in our way of getting to heaven. There is another way but it leads to ruin, the end of it is destruction. God in his loving kindness will keep us out of it, if we will keep our eye single to him.