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men are in their faculties, for they want the greatest of all faculties-to know the living God and stand in awe of his mighty power: with the one, judgment to come is the stalking-horse of loyalty; with the other, it is the food and spice of jest-making. Barren souls!-and is the land of Shakspeare, and Spenser,
and Milton come to this! that it can procreate nothing but such profane spawn, and is content to exalt such blots and blemishes of manhood into, ornaments of the age. Puny age! when religion, and virtue, and manly freedom have ceased from the character of those
it accounteth noble. But I thank God, who hath given us a refuge in the great spirits of a former age, who will yet wrest the sceptre from these mongrel
Englishmen. We can betake ourselves to the Advent to Judgment' of Taylor; The Four Last Things' of Bates; the Blessedness of the Righteous' of Howe; and the Saints' Rest' of Baxter; books which breathe of the reverend spirit of the olden time. God send to the others
repentance, or else blast the powers they have abused so terribly; for if they repent not, they shall harp another strain at that scene they have sought to vulgarize. The men have seated themselves in his throne of judgment, to vent from thence doggrel spleen and insipid flattery; but the impious men have no more right to the holy seat, than hath the obscene owl to nestle and bring forth in the Ark of the Covenant, which the wings of the cherubim of glory did overshadow."-pp. 325, 326.
Before we close, we must hazard a few comments on certain peculiarities of idiom and expression, which Mr. Irving has largely scattered over the pages of his volume. He is extremely fond of introducing those out-of-fashion phrases, which our remote ancestors delighted in, but which modern refinement has, properly as we conceive, long since banished from the list of terms in
use. I rede you-ere we wis and other antiquities of the same kind, have no especial charm that we can discern, to justify the affectation of mingling the quaint speech of the olden time, with other forms and combinations, which laugh to scorn the simplicity of the ancient model. Neither can we approve the employment of familiar and coarse expressions in
the highest discussions and descriptions. Mr. Irving indulges himself in such phrases as the following; "muzzle free discourse”
"power muffled with mercy""wiped into oblivion"-"the sprouting of the grave with vitality""her (the soul's) callow nakedness sprouteth with a divine plumage. When "the morning stars sung together, and the sons of God shouted for joy," this glorious concert is styled a merrymaking! Nor have we any clear perception of the propriety of introducing, in connexion with judgment to come, references to "the old English poem of the Nut-brown Maid," or to Goethe's dramatic legend of Faustus.
These, however, are defects easily removed or excused; there are redeeming qualities in the compositions of Mr. Irving, which make all minor failures or excesses. easily tolerable; but we do most earnestly deprecate the air of loftiness and dictation which he has assumed, and to which he will find few, out of his own immediate circle, inclined to submit.
An Essay on Baptism; being an Inquiry into the Meaning, Form, and Extent of the Administration of that Ordinance. By Greville Ewing, Minister of the Gospel, Glasgow. 12mo. pp. 204. Price 3s. 6d.-London: Longman; Ogle and Co. THAT differences of sentiment and practice exist among Christians is more matter of regret than of wonder. Without insinuating that the revelation of God is either dark or ambiguous, it is obvious that its information on some subjects is more full and explicit than on others; and that the means of ascertaining its sense on certain topics are less ample than those which can be brought to bear on its grand and essential truths. When, with these occasions of
flecting on the blinding influence of early prejudices, fixed habits, extensive and respectable connexions, worldly interests and honours, from pursuing their investigations into the meaning of scripture, and their attempts to unite the followers of Christ together. Unmeaning exclamations against bigotry, and foolish and unscriptural harangues about nonessentials, and the impropriety of contending about forms and ordinances, will never satisfy the conscience of a serious inquirer after the will of Christ. They may produce indifference, and the appearance of liberality, but will never lead to cordial agreement on the principles of the word of God. Let Christians examine with prayer, and the use of the proper means, all the will of Christ; let them preach, or let them publish, the result of their inquiries; let every man be fully persuaded in his own mind, and act according to his convictions, and we despair not of the followers of the one Saviour being before the end as they were at the beginning, in every thing of real importance to their cordial union and hearty cooperation, of one heart and of one soul.
mistake or ignorance, we combine the various causes of error and opposition to revealed truth which exist in ourselves, and which are continually excited and strengthened by the prince of darkness, that he may divide and rule those who ought to be one in faith, and heart, and practice; instead of wondering that the divisions of the Christian world are so many, we ought rather to bless God that they, are not more numerous and more deadly. The length of time which has elapsed since Christianity began to be promulgated by its Founder and his chosen servants-the mystery of iniquity which operated during so many ages, corrupting and injuring every part of the sacred system, and establishing "all monstrous, all prodigious things" in its place, account for the great difficulty of getting back to primitive times and practices. "Truth indeed came once into the world with the Divine Master, and was a perfect shape, most glorious to look on; but when he ascended, and his apostles after him were laid asleep, then strait arose a wicked race of deceivers, who, as the story goes of the Egyptian Typhon, with his conspirators, how they dealt with the god Osiris, took the virgin Truth, hewed her lovely form into a thousand pieces, and scattered them to the four winds. From that time ever since, the sad friends of Truth, such as durst, appear imitating the careful search that Isis made for the mangled body of Osiris, went up and down, gathering up limb by limb, still as they could find them. We have not yet found them all, nor ever shall, till her Master's second coming; he shall bring together every joint and member, and shall mould them into an immortal feature of loveliness and perfection."
The friends of truth, however, ought not to be discouraged by these considerations, nor by re
Differences respecting some points are more vexatious and injurious than on others. If we should be asked what is at present the most unlovely, the most painful, and the most disastrous in its operation, of those controversies which divide those who are substantially of one mind respecting the rule of duty, the rights of conscience, and the principles of the kingdom of Jesus Christ, we should not hesitate to answer, in one word, BAPTISM. Bitter are the waters of this longagitated discussion. On the two sides of it are ranged, in constant hostility and frequent conflict, a multitude of persons, whose fellowship and exertions would otherwise
be one. An institution, peculiarly simple in its nature, designed for individual observance, and that but once in a life time, is the occasion of more strife and division than all the other ordinances of Christ together. This is certainly unseemly and unnatural. The man who heals this breach, or contributes any thing calculated to set the controversy at rest, will deserve well of the Christian community. We are much deceived if the publication now on our table will not do something to terminate at least one part of this seemingly interminable discussion.
An author who writes on the subject of Baptism has to encounter peculiar difficulties. The parties on both sides profess to be satiated with books and pamphlets on the controversy. Almost every Baptist minister who has appeared as a writer has distinguished himself by some publication on his side of the question. Defences of infant baptism are numerous; and the very booksellers, who are constantly up to the chin in literature, pretend to be squeamish about any farther additions to the baptismal controversy. On this state of the public mind, the following observations by Mr. Ewing, in his Introduction, are worthy of attention.
"The discussion of the questions usually agitated on the subject of Baptism, requires, on both sides, to be improved. The very quantity of that discussion is itself an evidence of its insufficiency. When a point is thoroughly investigated, it is set at rest: when it ceases not to be agitated, neither party has yet been able to ripen it for decision. I am aware, that many have been long ago shouting victory in this contest. The duty of immersing in water those who are to be baptized, and of requiring that none shall be baptized till they have made a profession of the faith, is alleged to be so plain an article of Christian doctrine, that the man who hears the gospel and rejects that article, must be wilfully disobedient. But it may well abate this confidence, and should humble us all, to see the battle continuing to CONG. MAG. No. 69.
rage, without the smallest appearance of termination.
despair of any result from the existing "Christians are actually beginning to controversy. Even among Protestants, whose principle it is, that the scriptures are a sufficient rule of faith and practice, several churches have been, of late years, formed on an understood acknowledg ment, that the word of God gives no explicit instruction to his people, on so rudimental a subject as the ordinance of Baptism. Every member is therefore left to do respecting it that which is right in his own eyes and it is agreed, that whatever each may think or do for himself, that ordinance shall, in no form, and in no case, be admitted into any part of their public worship. Thus they profess their faith and their scepticism at the same time. They would preach the gospel, and make disciples out of all nations; but they own that they cannot baptize them, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Where this principle is not avowed, the practice is frequently the same, and the people are willing, on other grounds, to same consequence generally follows. If join the communion, no objections are made on account of any sentiments they may hold concerning Baptism; and it soon becomes a delicate matter to observe that ordinance, or to speak particularly of it, in the church."—pp. vi, vii.
in this controversy arose out of Mr. Ewing's reason for engaging the publication of a Greek Grammar, and a Greek and English contains a very valuable disserScripture Lexicon. tation on βάπτω and βαπτίζω, and also remarks on some of the Greek prepositions which affect the baptismal controversy. To these explanations, several objections were made, first in manuscript, and afterwards in a publication by Dr. Ryland. In the part of his work objected to, Mr. Ewing had been furnished with the aid of one of Greek the most accomplished scholars in the kingdom; to whom he is also indebted for a very able and learned letter, subjoined to the present publication. In the prospect of a new edition of the Grammar and Lexicon, he felt himself called to enlarge and defend the views formerly published respecting Baptism. Thus origi3 Q
the works of the late lamented Professor Murray of Edinburgh, have not received all the attention which their merits and importance deserve, and which they are yet destined to receive. On his principles Mr. Ewing analyzes the term BaπTw; he endeavours to discover and trace its primitive, and thus to account for its varied applications. The following passage will explain the principle on which he proceeds.
nated the present work, which we trust will render a very essential service, both to religion and learning.
From the very great condensation of the argument, and the great quantity of minute, but accurate, learning which pervades the Essay, it is a very difficult task to analyse it. But, in brief, it may be thus described. The author first explains the terms, then inquires into the meaning and form of the ordinance-proceeds to consider objections-offers miscellaneous remarks on the hypothesis of immersion-and then examines the extent of the administration of the ordinance. Under the last is included the defence of infant baptism.
It is in the discussion respecting the mode of baptism that we think the chief strength and originality of this Essay consist. And we have no hesitation in saying, that, if we are capable of estimating the force of argument, the body of evidence which the author has adduced completely overthrows the doctrine of immersion. We are not aware that ever the meaning of the terms has undergone so accurate and so extensive an investigation. We do not expect to see the author's views successfully combated; but, for the sake of truth, we should be very glad to see what can be said on the other side by some scholar of equal eminence with Mr. Ewing. Those who would judge of the justice of our opinion must not depend on our testimony, or the extracts which we may give, but have recourse to the work itself; the spirit and temper of which are as excellent as the argument is strong.
Mr. Ewing is a disciple of Horne Tooke, we mean of course the philology, not the politics of that celebrated, but eccentric, genius. His views of the philosophy of language, since powerfully corroborated by
"I have been led to question these suppositions. Neither ẞáπw nor ßaπTiw signifies to immerse, more than to pour out. Nor are the circumstances of the connexion more needful to affix to baptizing the idea of pouring out, than the idea of immersing. The words are one, and their meaning one. Let us venture to analyze them. The following are admitted as general rules for reducing words to their first principles. Let those the signs of derivation and inflection, be letters and syllables, which are merely cut off. Let intermediate vowels, employed for the purpose of enunciating consonants, be disregarded, or considered Let those consonants also, which are as easily changeable into one another. pronounced by the same organ of speech, (as the lips, the teeth, or the palate,) be freely interchanged, as we find them actually to be, in the practice of speaking. That part of the word, which remains unvaried after these operations, falls to be considered as the radical term. Apply these rules to the nations, and you have the syllable, bap; words in question. Discard the termichange the intermediate vowel a into o, and the labial consonant b into the labial P, and you have the term pop, which is the root required.”—p. 22.
After showing that pop is the root of the words proposed to be analyzed, and giving some illustrations of the extensive diffusion of this radical, he says,
"Keep in mind, now, the above explanation, and apply it to Baptism (poptism, and you are furnished with a key, which will naturally and consistently account for all its much disputed acceptations. You have only to observe, that a person or thing may be either popped into water, or any other fluid, or may have water, or any other fluid, popped upon, or mystery vanishes. popped into him or it, and the whole
"Having thus translated the word
Baptism (which we have been often challenged to do) we are prepared to show that it signifies the application, properly the sudden and slight applica
tion, of water, or some other liquid;
but, in a more lax sense, the application of it, in any manner, or for any puгpose; by effusion, affusion, perfusion, or infusion; by sprinkling, daubing, friction, or immersion; wholly or partially, permanently or for a moment ;—for purifying or defiling, ornamenting or bespattering, washing away what was found adhering, or covering with what was not
there before,for at once washing away
the filth, and inducing the new beauty ;for merely wetting the surface, or causing the liquor to sink into the inmost core, not only to refresh the living, but to act, in the moment of creation, as an element of life."-pp. 27, 28.
We are aware that this derivation of the term is likely to occasion some ludicrous associations; and that jokes of various sorts are likely to be produced by it, partly at the expense of the author, and partly as an easy way of getting rid of the force of the argument. There is no avoiding this consequence in philological speculations. It ought to be observed that Mr. Ewing thus analyzes the vowels, in order to account for their varied conventional meanings. It seems to us impossible to dispute its diversified applications. Let those, then, who dispute the analysis now proposed, substitute, if they can, a better one in its place, or endeavour otherwise to account for the various meanings of the disputed words. We must also observe, that the scriptural and classical illustrations of these meanings, adduced in the work before us, are entirely independent of the analysis, and of every system of philology. They must be tried on their own grounds; and we think that many of them will furnish a hard task to show that they can admit of the idea of immersion in any possible modification. After illustrating the various modes in which Barro is employed, the author proceeds to βαπτιζω, and among other things observes
"There are many instances, in which Barrio signifies to immerse, that is, to pop in, to plunge or sink completely under βοις βαπτίζεσθαι συμβαίνει ξύλων Thus, οὐδὲ γὰρ τοῖς ἀκολύμα троπоv éπiñoλášovσi, "to those who are unable to swim it does not happen to sink under water, (Gr. to be baptized) they float like wood." Strabo, lib. 6. οὔπω μέλλοντος βαπτίζεσθαι τοῦ okádovs, "the vessel not being at all about to sink." Joseph. de Bell. IV. 3.
βαπτίσθεντος γὰρ ἡμῶν τοῦ πλοίου κατὰ μέσον τὸν ̓Αδρίαν δι ὄλης τῆς νυκτὸς ἐνηξάμεθα, 66 our vessel having sunk (foundered) in the middle of the Adriatic sea, we swam the whole night." Joseph. Vit. § 3. Stephens quotes as an example of the word signifying to dip, the following from Plutarch de Superstit. τὴν περιμάκτριαν κάλει γραῦν, καὶ βάπτισον σεαυτὸν εἰς θάλασσαν καὶ καθίσας ἐν τῇ γῇ skilled in baking, and baptize thyself in διημερεύσον, "call an old woman the sea, and sitting down on the ground remain all day :"-but in this passage BúπTIOоV evidently seems to mean no more than wash thyself. Josephus uses it twice concerning the death of Aristobulus, the brother of Mariamne, who was drowned through Herod's instigation at Jericho, by certain Greeks, who enticed him into the water to swim, and then, under pretence of play, immersed him or kept him under water, till he died. βαπτίζοντες, οὐκ ἄνηκαν ἕως καὶ Tavтáпaσiν ȧпопνížαɩ, Jewish Antiq. B. XV. chap. iii. § 3. Again, in his wars of the Jews, B. I. chap. xxii. § 2. "The young man was sent to Jericho, and there, according to his orders, being immersed in a fish pond, he came to his end :” βαπτίζομένος ἐν κολυμβήθρᾳ. stances of Immersion baptism. 'These, I conceive, to be genuine inAs in the case of ẞarтw, I have been obliged to go for them to Josephus, and to other writers of merely human authority, because I have not been able to meet with an instance of Immersion Baptism in the Holy Scriptures. There is one point in
which some of these instances differ from
the example given of the same meaning of βάπτω. In that, it was applied to what a man did to himself. Here, it must be confessed, that, in some of the cases, there are dippers as well as dipped, and the other cases also, are not those of voluntary plunging, but of fatal sinking.' Is this the pattern of baptizers and baptized? Shall we illustrate the office of John the Baptist and of the apostles and evangelists of Christ, by the work of