| Of right and wrong he taught|
Truths as refined as ever Athens heard;
And (strange to tell) he practisd what he preachd.
John ArmstrongThe Art of Preserving Health. Bk. IV. L. 301.
|I met a preacher there I knew, and said,|
Ill and overworked, how fare you in this scene?
Bravely! said he; for I of late have been
Much cheered with thoughts of Christ, the living bread.
Matthew ArnoldEast London.
|I preached as never sure to preach again,|
And as a dying man to dying men.
Richard BaxterLove Breathing Thanks and Praise. Pt. 2. St. 29.
| Faites ce que nous disons, et ne faites pas ce que nous faisons.|
Do as we say, and not as we do.
BoccaccioDecameron. From the French of Sabatier de CastresTroisième Journée. Novelle VII.
|For the preachers merit or demerit,|
It were to be wished that the flaws were fewer
In the earthen vessel, holding treasure,
But the main thing is, does it hold good measure?
Heaven soon sets right all other matters!
Robert BrowningChristmas Eve. Canto XXII.
|Hear how he clears the points o Faith|
Wi rattlin an thumpin!
Now meekly calm, now wild in wrath,
Hes stampin, an hes jumpin!
BurnsHoly Fair. St. 13.
|And pulpit, drum ecclesiastic,|
Was beat with fist instead of a stick.
ButlerHudibras. Pt. I. Canto I. L. 11.
|Take time enough: all other graces|
Will soon fill up their proper places.
John ByromAdvice to Preach Slow.
|Oh, for a forty-parson power to chant|
Thy praise, Hypocrisy!
ByronDon Juan. Canto X. St. 34. Sydney Smith quotes this as a twelve-parson power of conversation.
|But Cristes loore, and his Apostles twelve,|
He taughte, but first he folowed it hymselfe.
ChaucerCanterbury Tales. Prologue. L. 527.
|There goes the parson, oh illustrious spark!|
And there, scarce less illustrious, goes the clerk.
CowperOn Observing Some Names of Little Note.
|I venerate the man whose heart is warm,|
Whose hands are pure, whose doctrine and whose life,
Coincident, exhibit lucid proof
That he is honest in the sacred cause.
CowperTask. Bk. II. L. 372.
|Would I describe a preacher,|
* * * *
I would express him simple, grave, sincere;
In doctrine uncorrupt; in language plain,
And plain in manner; decent, solemn, chaste,
And natural in gesture; much impressd
Himself, as conscious of his awful charge,
And anxious mainly that the flock he feeds
May feel it too; affectionate in look,
And tender in address, as well becomes
A messenger of grace to guilty men.
CowperTask. Bk. II. L. 394.
|The things that mount the rostrum with a skip,|
And then skip down again, pronounce a text,
Cry hem; and reading what they never wrote
Just fifteen minutes, huddle up their work,
And with a well-bred whisper close the scene!
CowperTask. Bk. II. L. 408.
|He that negotiates between God and man,|
As Gods ambassador, the grand concerns
Of judgment and of mercy, should beware
Of lightness in his speech.
CowperTask. Bk. II. L. 463.
|The priest he merry is, and blithe|
Three-quarters of a year,
But oh! it cuts him like a scythe
When tithing time draws near.
CowperYearly Distress. St. 2.
|A kick that scarce would move a horse,|
May kill a sound divine.
CowperYearly Distress. St. 16.
|Go forth and preach impostures to the world,|
But give them truth to build on.
DanteVision of Paradise. Canto XXIX. L. 116.
|God preaches, a noted clergyman,|
And the sermon is never long;
So instead of getting to heaven at last,
Im going all along.
Emily DickinsonPoems. VI. A Service of Song.
|The proud he tamd, the penitent he cheerd:|
Nor to rebuke the rich offender feard.
His preaching much, but more his practice wrought;
(A living sermon of the truths he taught:)
For this by rules severe his life he squard:
That all might see the doctrines which they heard.
DrydenCharacter of a Good Parson. L. 75.
| Alas for the unhappy man that is called to stand in the pulpit, and not give the bread of life.|
EmersonAn Address to the Senior Class in Divinity College, Cambridge. July 15, 1838.
|But in his duty prompt at every call,|
He watchd and wept, he prayd and felt for all.
GoldsmithDeserted Village. L. 165.
| They shall knaw a file, and flee unto the mountains of Hepsidam whar the lion roareth and the Wang Doodle mourneth for its first bornah!|
Burlesque Sermon in Coles Fun Doctor. Attributed to Andrew Harper as a travesty on sermons preached by itinerant preachers on the Mississippi. Found in Speakers Garland. Vol. VIII. Also claimed for DowPatent Sermons.
|Judge not the preacher; for he is thy judge:|
If thou mislike him, thou conceivst him not.
God calleth preaching folly. Do not grudge
To pick out treasures from an earthen pot.
The worst speak something good. If all want sense,
God takes a text, and preaches patience.
HerbertThe Temple. The Church Porch. St. 72. Quoting, But we have this treasure in earthen vessels. II Corinthians. IV. 7.
| Even ministers of good things are like torches, a light to others, waste and destruction to themselves.|
Hooker. Quoted by Gladstone, 1880. See Morleys Life of Gladstone. Bk. VIII. Ch. I.
| Sir, a woman preaching is like a dogs walking on his hind legs. It is not done well: but you are surprised to find it done at all.|
Samuel JohnsonBoswells Life of Johnson. (1763).
|And he played on a harp of a thousand strings,|
Spirits of just men made perfect.
Burlesque Sermon, ascribed to Rev. Henry Taliaferro Lewis, in the Brandon (Miss.) Republic (1854). Claimed for St. George Lee and William P. Brannan. Found in Dows Patent Sermons. T. L. Massons Masterpieces of Humor.
|As pleasant songs, at morning sung,|
The words that dropped from his sweet tongue
Strengthened our hearts; or, heard at night,
Made all our slumbers soft and light.
LongfellowChristus. The Golden Legend. Pt. I.
|Skilful alike with tongue and pen,|
He preached to all men everywhere
The Gospel of the Golden Rule,
The New Commandment given to men,
Thinking the deed, and not the creed,
Would help us in our utmost need.
LongfellowPrelude to Tales of a Wayside Inn. L. 217.
|It is by the Vicars skirts that the|
Devil climbs into the Belfry.
LongfellowThe Spanish Student. Act I. Sc. 2.
|So clomb the first grand thief into Gods fold;|
So since into his church lewd hirelings climb.
MiltonParadise Lost. Bk. IV. L. 192.
| He of their wicked ways|
Shall them admonish, and before them set
The paths of righteousness.
MiltonParadise Lost. Bk. XI. L. 812.
|And truths divine came mended from that tongue.|
PopeEloisa to Abelard. L. 66.
|The gracious Dew of Pulpit Eloquence,|
And all the well-whipd Cream of Courtly Sense.
PopeEpilogue to the Satires. Dialogue I. L. 70.
|He was a shrewd and sound divine|
Of loud Dissent the mortal terror;
And when, by dint of page and line,
He stablished Truth, or startled Error,
The Baptist found him far too deep,
The Deist sighed with saving sorrow,
And the lean Levite went to sleep,
And dreamt of eating pork to-morrow.
|His sermon never said or showed|
That Earth is foul, that Heaven is gracious,
Without refreshment on the road
From Jerome, or from Athanasius.
And sure a righteous zeal inspired,
The hand and head that penned and planned them,
For all who understood, admired
And some who did not understand them.
|The lilies say: Behold how we|
Preach without words of purity.
Christina G. RossettiConsider the Lilies of the Field.
| I have taught you, my dear flock, for above thirty years how to live; and I will show you in a very short time how to die.|
SandysAnglorum Speculum. P. 903.
|Sermons in stones and good in every thing.|
As You Like It. Act II. Sc. 1. L. 17.
|Show me the steep and thorny way to heaven,|
Whiles, like a puffd and reckless libertine,
Himself the primrose path of dalliance treads,
And recks not his own rede.
Hamlet. Act I. Sc. 3. L. 47.
|He who the sword of heaven will bear|
Should be as holy as severe;
Pattern in himself to know,
Grace to stand, and virtue go.
Measure for Measure. Act III. Sc. 2. L. 275.
| It is a good divine that follows his own instructions; I can easier teach twenty what were good to be done, than be one of the twenty to follow mine own teaching.|
Merchant of Venice. Act I. Sc. 2. L. 15.
|Perhaps thou wert a priest,if so, my struggles|
Are vain, for priestcraft never owns its juggles.
Horace SmithAddress to a Mummy. St. 4.
|He taught them how to live and how to die.|
Wm. SomervilleIn Memory of the Rev. Mr. Moore. L. 21.
|By thy language cabalistic,|
By thy cymbal, drum, and his stick.
Thomas StanleyThe Debauchée. (1651).
|With a little hoard of maxims preaching down a daughters heart.|
TennysonLocksley Hall. L. 94.
|A little, round, fat, oily man of God.|
ThomsonCastle of Indolence. Canto I. St. 69.
|Dear sinners all, the fool began, mans life is but a jest,|
A dream, a shadow, bubble, air, a vapour at the best.
In a thousand pounds of law I find not a single ounce of love,
A blind man killed the parsons cow in shooting at the dove;
The fool that eats till he is sick must fast till he is well,
The wooer who can flatter most will bear away the belle.
* * * * * *
And then again the women screamed, and every staghound bayed;
And why? because the motley fool so wise a sermon made.
George W. ThornburyThe Jesters Sermon.
|Le sermon edifie, et lexample detruit.|
The sermon edifies, the example destroys.
(Practice what you preach.)
Abbé de Villiers. From a story in LArt de Prêcher.