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they had been accustomed under the previous Dispensation; and going about to establish their own righteousness, submitted not to the righteousness which was by faith.
“Converts from the philosophic Gentiles, exercising their reason on truths to be received as revealed with single faith in the Divine word that reveals them, added to the doctrine of the Cross the deductions of their own imagination, and were wise above what was written.
“The one attempted to mould the stone of stumbling into one that would fit into a spiritual edifice suitable to their views and feelings. The other hoped to rid the doctrine of the reproach of foolishness by making it such as human reason would commend.
“And history shows us, that from that day to this these two schools of theology have continued and flourished, and been more and more developed in the nominal Christian Church, because, as our Church tells us, the mystical body of Christ, His true Church, is “the blessed company of all faithful people.'
“ And it behoves us ever to recollect that to the end of time there must be the same difference between those who hold Apostolic doctrine, and the followers of these two schools, as there was between the Apostles and the first propagators of such views.
“Our safeguard, then, is to make the apostolic mode of delivering this doctrine, as we find it declared in the Holy Scriptures they have left us, our guide and rule.
“And I think we shall find that there is this distinctive difference between the mode of teaching this truth which we shall learn from the Apostles, and that which we shall derive from any other source: that, in the latter, human instrumentality will have a prominent place; in the former, the source, the giver of salvation and all grace, is Christ Himself, acting in direct and immediate communication with each individual believer.
“This teaching differs in the very foundation of the faith. Human wisdom places justification in human righteousness, accepted by God for the sake of Christ. Apostolic teaching grounds it upon the imputation of that perfect righteousness of our Divine Redeemer which is 'unto all and upon all them that believe;' the free gift of justification unto life.
“It differs as it respects the way in which the blessings of the New Covenant Dispensation are bestowed.
“Man is inclined to interpose human instrumentality between the soul and Christ's spiritual gifts, to limit the communication of those gifts to means ministered by human agents, and even to place human mediators between the believer and Christ. Apostolic teaching clears away at once all such barriers to communion between Christ and the soul. It shows us that the gifts of grace are fully and directly communicated to every penitent soul that seeks for mercy from Christ Himself; and that the gracious promises made to all that call upon Him, are such as show that we cannot do Him a greater dishonour than suppose Him to be more ready to hear others pleading for us, than to listen to our own prayers.
“It differs as it respects the mode of worship. Man is inclined
to add to the simple ordinances of Christ's appointment a multitude of rites and ceremonies of his own devising, after the commandments and doctrines of men ;' having, to use the language of the Apostle, "a show of wisdom in will worship and humility, and neg. lecting of the body,' but not characteristic of those who hold the Head.
“ It is the result of that inherent spirit of self-righteousness that seeks to raise a plea of merit on self-imposed observances. And where this addition to the simple worship of the early Christian Church has been allowed to take root and grow, we see it at last developed in the multiplication even of the objects of worship, giving to the dead, and even to inanimate objects, the honour due only to the Divine Being.
“ Apostolic teaching leads us to that spiritual worship — the worship of the heart—which, having for its object communion with Christ Himself, and desirous of being lifted in spirit above all earthly objects into the very presence of its God and Saviour in the heavenly world, is impeded rather than aided by a gorgeous ceremonial, which reminds it more of earth than heaven, and savours of those 'rudiments of the world' to which the Apostle tells us the Christian is to be dead with Christ.'
“I might add other points, if time permitted; but, after all, it is only the study of the Apostolic writings themselves, in simplicity and sincerity of mind, and with prayer for Divine guidance, each man for himself, that will keep us steadfast in the Apostolic faith ; especially in these days of wide-spread perversion of God's revealed truth and disaffection to Apostolic doctrine. Our only safeguard is to remember the Apostolic admonition, 'Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom.'.
“Wherever the Scriptures are placed in the background, there the doctrine of Scripture is practically overlaid, if not corrupted, by human teaching.” (pp. 70—75.)
The conclusion of this Sermon contains some practical remarks upon the obligation of clerical subscription to the Thirtynine Articles :
“It behoves, therefore, all those who are desirous of undertaking the ministerial office in our Church, carefully to ascertain what the doctrine of her Formularies is. It is not to be properly learnt by a cursory survey of them. And nothing is more necessary for a right interpretation of them, than a knowledge of the current theology of the period at which they were written or compiled, three centuries ago. Though truth is the same, the mode of stating it, and the terms and phrases used for conveying it, vary with the circumstances of the times.
“Moreover, when the Formularies of a Church consist partly of forms of prayer for public worship, and partly of precise statements of doctrine, there may appear at first sight to be some discrepancy between the two. The former are, of necessity, drawn up in language universal in form, and taking for granted that all are faithful worshippers ; the latter, with equal necessity, draw distinctions, Showing that such language is applicable in its strict sense only to a limited extent. And it is obvious, and was determined by the highest authority, that the formal dogmatical statements of a Church in her Articles of Faith, are the primary authority for ber doctrines.
“ Time forbids my entering upon the various considerations that should be kept in view in the conduct of our inquiries in this matter.
“But there is one point, lying at the very foundation of them all, which I must not omit to mention; and that is, that we shonld apply to them a principle of interpretation that will make them all harmonize with one another. If the Prayer-book is interpreted so as to explain away the Articles, or the Articles used to explain away the Prayer-book, we are using a principle of interpretation miserably different from what was intended, and which is, in itself, inconsistent with Christian simplicity and truth. There may, and no doubt will ever be some differences of view in the interpretation given to the same forms ; partly from the necessary indistinctness of human language, and partly from the opening intentionally and wisely left for diversities of opinion in non-essential points. But, as we accept and assent to each Formulary independently of the rest, though they must be taken together as throwing light upon each other, none is to be sacrificed to any other. The genuine sense is a lock which has various wards, and the only true key to it is that which will fit them all. And I believe that one who is well acquainted with the scriptural views of those to whom we owe our Formularies, will have little trouble in finding a principle of interpretation that will solve all the difficulties that present themselves.” (pp. 76—78.)
It will have been seen in the foregoing extracts, that evangelical truth is brought to bear upon the prevalent heresies of the day. The great lesson which the Evangelical preachers of the present generation have to learn, is the adaptation of their principles to the erroneous currents of thought in the popular mind, which are often of a totally different kind from those with which our fathers had to contend. In this respect we especially recommend these Sermons to the careful study of the younger clergy. As an excellent specimen of such adaptation, we insert the following extracts from a sermon preached at the Royal Chapel, Whitehall, Feb. 24, 1861.
“It is the faculty of reason which raises man above the rest of the creation, and he is apt to forget its necessary limits in a finite being, and the imperfection which, to say nothing of the fall, must of necessity characterize it in dealing with matters not the objects of the senses. Hence the admonition of our blessed Saviour, * Except ye be converted and become as little children, ye cannot enter into the kingdom of heaven.'
“In these words, my brethren, we see the foundation of the Christian character--the humility of mind that, in the full per: ception of its own weakness and imperfection, listens to the voice of the Infinite and Almighty Being to whom man owes life and breath and all things (for in Him, as the heathen themselves have testified, we live, and move, and have our being) with deferential submission.
“At the very root of all inquiries as to our duty with respect to a revelation professing to come from God, lies this question, Are we to exercise our judgment as a 'verifying faculty' (as it has been called) upon statements, shown by evidence which commends itself to our reason to be divinely revealed, and accept and reject as we please?
“If it be so, either the fact of any Divine revelation that can be relied upon must be given up, or the Divine Being himself is one who can command only a very limited feeling of veneration and respect. For it needs no proof, that if portions of that which comes tu us as a Divine Revelation do not deserve that name, other parts which rest only upon the same evidence are not worthy of our confidence, and the claims of the whole are gone.
" And on the other hand, if it is a Divine Revelation, and we are to bring it to the bar of human reason, to separate the true from the false, the good from the evil, we reduce the Godhead (as in fact the heathen did) to the level of human infirmity and imperfection ; we practically set the creature above the Creator. And hence it was that among the heathen, as the Apostle tells us, 'the world by wisdom knew not God.'
“ The wisdom of nature led to anything but a knowledge of the nature and character and ways of God. The natural man,' as the Apostle says in our text, 'receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness unto him ; neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.'” (pp. 18, 19.)
DEAN MILMAN'S ANNALS OF ST. PAUL'S CATHEDRAL. Annals of St. Paul's Cathedral. By H. H. Milman, D.D., late
Dean of St. Paul's. London : Murray. 1869. We have to thank Dean Stanley for the introduction of a class of works full of interest to the general reader. Previous to the publication of his Memorials of Canterbury and Westminster Abbey, those who wished for information on such subjects had to gather it, as best they could, from ponderous and expensive tomes, full of antiquarian and architectural research, or else to content themselves with meagre and inaccurate details furnished by guide-books. In either case, there was a deficiency of the historical and romantic element with which our cathedrals so abound. The charm attaching to them is indefinitely enhanced when the skill of the accomplished historian peoples them afresh with the princes and prelates who sat in their high places, and with the multitudes of former generations who thronged their aisles. We shall not readily forget the thrill of interest we experienced when one day, wandering carelessly through the chapels of Winchester Cathedral, we cast our eyes down accidentally, and perceived under our feet the large blue stone which marks the restingplace of Izaak Walton. A whole crowd of fancies was instantly conjured up; from the good old man who recorded the golden saying, that “God has two dwellings, the one in Heaven and the other in a meek and thankful heart,” our thoughts roved to that other holy and humble man, Bishop Ken, his relative, and the quiet, silent chapel became instinct with life and interest.
What Dean Stanley has accomplished for Westminster Abbey, the late Dean Milman has undertaken for St. Paul's. We do not think his success has been equal, but this mainly arises from comparative lack of interest in the subject. A very few pages comprise all the history of St. Paul's up to the period of the Conquest; and when entering upon the following period, he is constrained to admit that “the Bishop of London and clergy of St. Paul's did not take much part in the municipal or political affairs of the City. The Bishop and the Chapter never obtained (he adds, 'they never aspired to obtain'] that supreme power which was exercised by many Bishops in Germany, France, and Italy over great cathedral cities. London gradually grew up to most important power and influence. But it was the citizens of London, either represented by their Mayor, or in defiance of his authority and that of his Aldermen, who asserted their independence, extorted charters from the Sovereign, or accepted them, and took the lead in the great affairs of the realm. .... The bishops and the clergy either quietly withdrew from all municipal affairs, or were steadily set aside and limited to their spiritual functions by the busy, stirring, and not unambitious citizens.” Thus shut out from all interference in municipal affairs, and all political interest being concentrated at Westminster, the Bishops of London and the clergy of St. Paul's for a long period -indeed, till the period of the Reformation-seem to have played a somewhat inglorious part. We hear of a council held in St. Paul's by Lanfranc, and of the opposition made by Bishop Foliot to Becket, by whom he was excommunicated; but there is little noteworthy in the history of St. Paul's, except for its being the scene in which the Papal Legates seem to have delighted to display their arrogance and presumption. It was in St. Paul's that Cardinal Nicolas, Bishop of Tusculum, received the cession of England as a fief of the Holy See, and that the infamous John did homage as a