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we are fully persuaded that no other man ever attained to such a reputation for wisdom on such slight evidence, yet we have no disposition to pluck a single leaf from the chaplet that has been placed on the brow of Bartholomew; but pity moves us to interpose a word in behalf of Philip. Here is his picture as drawn by Dr. Vance: "Philip was a typical dullard, a man of heavy, stupid, slowlymoving brain, whose dull mind staggered and stumbled helplessly before whatever called for rapid thought and great sagacity. Everything that we know about Philip serves to accentuate this characteristic. Whenever he appears on the page of the gospel narrative, it is as a man whose heart was right, but whose head was dull. He can be counted on to do the wrong thing at the wrong time, and to say the wrong thing at the most inopportune moment. He is clumsy, utterly lacking in tact, and forever bringing about awkward situations; a dull, slow-thinking, blundering, but earnest-hearted man.” What could Philip have said and done to entitle him to such a portrait as that? How did it happen that his unseasonable blabbings and grotesque blunderings escaped the notice of the Christian world so long? We are tempted to express surprise that Jesus should have found Philip running at large. To say the least, is not this a caricature rather than a character sketch ? The only thing that could reconcile us to accepting this as a true picture would be our contempt for the high-church doctrine of apostolic succession. We should feel a malicious pleasure in pointing some of our ecclesiastical bigots to such an apostolic ancestry.
3. The plan of drawing pictures by contrasting dominant characteristics results inevitably in exaggerating those characteristics. Having committed one's self to the task, the case must be made out. Exegesis will be strained, and incidents will be laden with fanciful significance. As an instance of the latter, we may cite the reason assigned for the presence of James along with Peter and John on certain important occasions: “We can understand why Peter was there, he was the head of the apostolic college. We can understand why John was there, he was the disciple whom Jesus loved. But why James? The only explanation is that his age entitled him to such distinguished consideration.” Can it be that a man, whose father and mother were both still in hale and vigorous life, had nothing to entitle him to consideration but his age? Then, he never had any other title to consideration. As an instance of strained exegesis, we may cite the instance of the interview between Christ and Philip, in connection with the feeding of the five thousand. Christ asked Philip, “Whence shall we buy bread that these may eat ?" “Philip begins to wrestle with that problem, but after a severe mental effort the most brilliant thing he can say is, “Two hundred pennyworth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may take a little.' Of course, Philip, that is apparent to the most thoughtless, but that is no solution of the problem. Any one knows that two hundred pennyworth of bread will not feed five thousand people, but whence shall we buy bread that they may eat”? This is cleverly done, but is it fairly done ? Why did Christ put the question to Philip? Just to secure from him an answer that would “get the laugh on him ?” The explanation that John gives is that Jesus did this to prove him, to put him to the test, to secure from him an admission of their utter inability to furnish supplies for such a multitude. Why did he put the question to Philip? Would it not be a natural inference to say that it was because Philip was endowed with that rare type of mind which can take in a novel situation at a glance ? Philip had but to sweep his eye over the far-stretching crowds, and in an instant he could tell you to a fraction the minimum amount which would be required to meet the necessity of the occasion. After this view of the case had occurred to us, we thought to look and see if any one else had expressed an opinion on the subject. Taking down a volume of the Expositor's Bible, and turning to the passage, we found that precisely the same view was taken by Dr. Marcus Dods. Referring to Philip, he says: “Apparently, this disciple was a shrewd business man, quick to calculate ways and means, and rather apt to scorn the expectations of faith.” We do not cite this by way of showing that “great minds run in the same channel," but to show that those who have no theory to maintain find an indication of Philip’s superior quickness of intellect where Dr. Vance finds evidence of helpless stupidity.
After so much unfavorable criticism, it might seem that the commendation expressed at first was insincere. But not so. It is a remarkably clever book, and excites, beyond any previous work of the author, our admiration of his brilliant gifts. We think he has failed “to make into real people the men whom Christ selected as the founders of the Christian church." But we know of no one who could take the same plan and succeed, and certainly no one could fail more admirably. It would do Dr. Vance a great injustice, however, to say that he has done nothing more than fail admirably. He bas elaborated his contrasted qualities in such way as to teach many timely and important lessons. Suppose he does draw upon his fertile fancy when in the sending out of James and John he represents Christ as “laying the trembling hand of old age on the sturdy shoulder of youth," and bidding them “go down the pathway of life together"; yet the lesson which he inculcates, namely, that Christ would have us reverence age, and utilize in his service the bounding energies of youth, is justly and forcefully taught. He has packed his book with glowing epigrams that fairly flash and sparkle with fresh and fruitful thought. He has clothed many sweet and noble sentiments in the garb of rare poetic beauty. Take this as a specimen: “Old age is sunset, youth is sunrise-sunrise-sunset; and the sunset is gladder for the roseate hues of the morning that gild it, and the sunrise is softer for the glow of the sunset that falls upon it; and all the day is richer because dawn and twilight, youth and old age, stretch out their hands toward each other, and clasping under noontide lift living to its zenith.”
Dr. Vance gives us two life-like portraits, those of Judas and Paul, one the blackest, the other the brightest, in the gallery of history, excepting always the one that shines forever in its solitary light. In sketching Judas, our gifted author bas clearly demonstrated that all he needs is a bare sufficiency of material. He paints the “dark betrayer" in such vivid and true colors that we almost feel and shrink from his presence as he lives before us: “There in the garden they meet, Judas and Christ, apostle and Master, traitor and Son of God. With the full light of the harvest moon making all vivid and distinct, Judas advances, at the head of the mob, and thrusting his evil face, dark with all the passions of hell, close up to the face of the Son of God, he actually dares to touch lips ablaze with the fires of perdition to the cheek of Jesus, exclaiming: 'Hail! Master!'"
What remains after eighteen centuries of eulogy for one to say in praise of Paul? Nothing absolutely new, perhaps, and yet Dr. Vance has been able to make our hearts glow with fresh admiration of the great apostle by showing how that all contrasted virtues which dwelt singly in the other apostles blended together in Paul, and made him the consummate product of both nature and grace.
We have spent so much time in objecting to the plan of the book that we can do but scant justice to its many excellencies. Only grant that it fails to make real men out of what must ever be but phantoms, and for the rest we commend it un. qualifiedly.
R. O. REED. Nashville, Tenn.
GAINES' BIBLE COURSE,
Agnes Scott Institute. I. Creation to the Kingdom, 8vo, pp. vi., 183. III.
The author of these volumes is the accomplished president of one of the most successful schools for young ladies in the South. He was pastor until recently of the church which is intimately connected with that school, and for a number of years combined the work of biblical instruction there with his pastoral duties. The great success of the institution, and his eminent fitness for the administration of its affairs, as well as for the conduct of its course in biblical instruction, demanded his release from the cares of the pastorate and his transfer to the sole care of the Institute. Dr. Gaines is recognized by all who know him as qualified in a rare degree for the special work of teaching the English Bible. His contributions to the journals in advocacy of the Bible as a part of the curriculum of every institution for the higher education have shown kim to be both earnest and wisely intelligent on this subject. He has claimed, especially in a paper published not long since in this QUARTERLY, and in the Preface to this work reiterates it, and emphasizes it from additional thought and experience, that the Bible is marvellously adapted to promote mental development, that it alone contains and can impart knowledge which is of great and fundamental value, that it is of preëminently great literary value, that its study is essential to the preservation in college-bred men and women of a true and adequate appreciation of it, that it is adapted to form and develop the highest type of moral character. The bcoks before us give his answer, practically, to the question, “How should the Bible be taught?"
The recognition of Bible study as a part of the curriculum of every wellorganized institution is no longer a question of doubt. The success attending its introduction in this manner has been marked. With the exception of the great state universities, there is scarcely a well-known college or university which does not advertise the fact that it requires or offers systematic study of the word of God. In some the work is meagre, but growing; in others it has been developed to as full and complete a course as that in the classics, or in literature. It is such a complete, thorough course as this that Dr. Gaines has given us here.
In the examination of these books, the first thing that we notice is the modesty of the author. He claims little for himself, beyond the arrangement of his work. The elaboration of such topics as he thinks wise to develop is largely in the exact words of different authors from whom he quotes, especially Humphrey, Blaikie, Geikie, Andrews, and Broadus. We could wish that the “personal equation" had been a little more freely made, for we know Dr. Gaines' ability to present in his own words and as the product of his own study many of the thoughts which he is content to give only as these others have moulded them. In the volume on the Old Testament, his favorite author is unquestionably Dr. E. P. Humphrey, whose Sacred History from the Creation to the Giving of the Law we think is rightly regarded as the finest piece of work extant on biblical history, of the time which it covers, making it a source of regret to all students of biblical history that the remainder of Dr. Humphrey's able notes were not completed and elaborated before his lamented death. Dr. Gaines had the advantage of these notes, however, as Dr. Humphrey left them in written form. In the New Testament his favorite author, 80 far as the harmony and chronology are concerned, is Dr. John A. Broadas, who, it is well kuown, departs from the usual method of the Harmonists in their emphasis of the division of the Lord's ministry into periods marked by the several Passovers, and bases his division upon certain manifestations of development or progress in the life recorded, as in our Lord's self-manifestation, in the hostility of his enemies, in his training of the Twelve.
The author manifests himself, however, most fully and admirably in the skilful arrangement of his materials. Each section presents a study in outline, and then, in notes following, this outline is more fully developed, the notes them. selves being no more than notes, and the fuller amplification of them being left to the class-room or the study. A happy adaptation of the printer's types to the different parts or divisions of these outlines and notes shows their relations clearly to the eye, and thus facilitates study and classification. The Old Testament history is presented in periods, marked by great movements or incidents, a method familiar to most students. At the end of the study of each of these periods, Dr. Gaines has affixed a review chart, which, with questions and topics for special study, greatly helps one in a comprehensive view of the entire period. In passing we cannot but think Dr. Gaines' nomenclature, while usually admirable, is a little at fault, or likely to be misunderstood, in naming the first period, from the creation to the call of Abraham, the “ante-ecclesiastical.” In the narrower sense of an exxdegia, strictly so-called, a "called-out” body, a "separated” body, there was no church before Abraham's day; but in the broader meaning of the word, and as respects the essentiæ of the church, few earnest students of the word, such as Dr. Gaines himself, will deny that there was everything inherent in the idea of the ecclesiastical from the time of Abel. From personal knowledge of the author's views, we know his meaning here; but those who do not know him may misunderstand The same suggestions apply, in the opposite direction, to his calling the second period “post-ecclesiastical.' A foot-note to this title—we think titles should always be so clear and precise as not to need an explanatory foot-notestates, “Not after the church, but after the organization of the visible church." Dr. Gaines' treatment of the covenant made with Abraham is specially fine. He shows its parties, its subject, God's part, Abram's part, its sanctions, and its seal with great clearness of arrangement and with unusual minuteness of detail for a book of this character. In connection with the third period, from the exodus to the settlement in Canaan, he gives a very elaborate chart, showing the principal features of the Sinaitic covenant. This chart first describes that covenant as to its parties, its manner of giving and receiving, etc., and then its matter is set forth as law, this law being shown to be threefold, and each element of it being drawn out in its special features. Under the ceremonial he places four divisions, viz., the sanotuary, the priesthood, the ritual, and the calendar. In the classification of the sacrifices and offerings, he distinguishes the sin and trespass-offering too greatly, we think, by erecting them into separate classes, as distinct from each other as each is distinct from the burnt-offering or the peace-offering. We think it better to regard them as belonging to one class, viz., the expiatory, and to make only three general classes, viz., the expiatory (sin and trespass), the self-dedicatory (burnt), and the sacramental (peace). This chart, however, will be found very valuable and helpful.
The third volume is devoted chiefly to the life of our Lord. As already indicated, the author's outline follows Dr. Broadus' Harmony in its views of the su«cessive events, their order, etc. Section numbers to each heading refer to this work. Review charts are introduced here also. A short chapter gives an outline of apostolic history, special attention being devoted to the subject of the apostolic writings, their occasion, time, etc. A few pages at the close deal with prophecy, the word being used in its more limited sense of prediction, and the outline being upon the Book of Revelation.
It is difficult to form a correct and fully appreciative estimate of a work like this. The skeleton is necessarily very unlike the frame clothed with flesh. What seem to be sharp angles or cavities become the rounded features glowing with beauty or the speaking eye beaming with light and intelligence. No one can fill up for another what the latter has given only in skeleton form. But if we must express an opinion or form a judgment, we will say that this work indicates not only painstaking care, earnest study, perseverance, and holy ambition, but also a profound insight into the meaning of redemption's story and of the relation of the great events and doctrines recorded in the word of God as they trace the development of that scheme of grace which God announced in the protevangelium and which in all its fulness and clearness was left to us when the sacred canon was closed. We should like to hear Dr. Gaines' own filling up, in class-room work or in fuller literary form, of these anusually fine and suggestive outlines and notes. Seldom have we seen a work covering so great a scope of history and thought as little subject to criticism as this, and as thoroughly commendable in every way. It is greatly superior to the somewhat similar productions of Price, Steele, or Semelroth, in mechanical arrangement, philosophical insight into the history, and earnest, reverential spirit.