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And on the whole, despite what is true and good in Dr. Bushnell's pages—despite some important admissions which seem to us to militate against his theory—his work must be regarded as an attack upon the use of reason in sacred subjects, and a denial of the possibility of Dogmatic Theology.

Our objections to the book might be summed up in the brief but now somewhat hackneyed formula, that 'what is true is not new, and what is new is not true.' But, in fact, there is some difficulty in deciding how much even of the upsound portion can be called new. A reader, who is conversant with • Neander’s Life of Christ' and Bishop Hampden's Bampton Lectures,' will hardly, we think, find himself confronted with many ideas that seem absolutely novel; while, on the other hand, those who are acquainted with the works of the late Dr. Mill, of Cambridge, or the Sermons of Professor Hussey at the sister University, will certainly be, in a very great degree, forewarned, forearmed. Probably, too, though we cannot here speak with positiveness, the works of Schleiermacher' might be discovered to have suggested a good deal to Dr. Bushnell. We use the word suggested advisedly, for we do not mean to insinuate a charge of any base or unfair plagiarism; we are simply asserting, what must be obvious upon a glance at American divinity, that the mind of Germany has crossed the Atlantic in great force, and is exercising an immense influence upon the thought of the Western Hemisphere.

But, to draw out our objections more fully and formally, we maintain that Dr. Bushnell commits serious mistakes with respect to the functions of language, which vitiate much of his subsequent reasoning; that he ignores important and relevant texts of Holy Scripture, important and relevant facts of human nature; that where he condescends to allude to history, his views are at best but superficial, and occasionally utterly wrong and groundless; that while condemning the dogmatic confessions of the early and undivided Church, he displays (it is a common case) a dogmatism of his own, differing from the Church's dogmatism in this, that hers is scriptural and true, while his is unscriptural and false; and that, finally, his sentiments concerning both language and dogma would tell fatally, if pushed to their logical conclusions, against the inspiration of Holy Scripture, and its worth as a revelation to mankind.

1 Schleiermacher received his religious education among the Moravians, and thus imbibed a love of religion which never forsook him. But it was a love only of religious feeling, and not a predilection for the distinctive faith of the Christian Church: it was a love of the beautiful, poetical, but vague religious sentiment, which he imagines to be the principal feature of Christianity, and an uiter disregard of the definite, unbending doctrines, which were once delivered to the saints.' -Letters on German Protestantism, pp. 167, 168.



These charges, however serious, may be supported, we would trust, without anything like undue personality. We think, indeed, that Dr. Bushnell's reading has probably been limited to a somewhat narrow range. There is no appearance of any real acquaintance with the works of any one of the great dogmatic theologians—patristic, medieval, or modern-upon whose labours 'he passes judgment. Athanasius, John of Damascus, Augustine, and other saintly fathers, Anselm, Bradwardine, Peter Lombard, Aquinas, Pearson, Bull, Mill, Dorner, Möhler, are all virtually involved by him in one common condemnation; all have committed what in our author's eyes are grievous errors. It is only natural to desiderate some proof that he possesses more than a mere second-hand and hearsay knowledge of their works. We think, too, that there may unhap, pily exist a closer connexion between Dr. Bushnell's labours and those of other men, whose writings have been enrolled in Mr. Chapman's so-called 'Catholic Series,' than he himself is aware of. It is strange at first sight, certainly, to find an anti-Sabellian and anti-Socinian writer in company with Fichte and with Emerson-the pantheistic Fichte, who asserts that • the conception of God as a particular substance is impossible and contradictory;' the boldly blaspheming Emerson, who declares that Churches are not built upon his Christ's] prin

ciples, but on his tropes. Historical Christianity is not the • doctrine of the soul, but an exaggeration of the personal, the . positive, the ritual. It has dwelt, it dwells, with noxious ex

aggeration about the person of Jesus. The soul knows no persons By his holy thoughts Jesus serves us, and thus

only.'? Dr. Bushnell, who writes in so different a spirit, has not, we trust, been a consentient party to this conjunction. But, even if it be regarded as the deed of an editor or publisher, it should surely be a hint alike to an author and his readers. It may suggest the question, Is not there some hidden bond of union between authors seemingly so opposite? For our own part, we believe that those who have brought them into company know perfectly well what they are about.

But although the principle of noscitur à sociis may be in some degree applicable to our author, we should be sorry to • ignore the features which exalt him conspicuously above most of his allies. There are, as we have already intimated, parts of his book which command our partial, parts which command our entire, sympathy. The following, though by no means a new argument against Socinianism, is extremely well stated. [The italics are ours.]

· Nature of the Scholar, &c. (Translated by William Smith.).

? Orations, No II, delivered in Divinity College, Cambridge, U. S. NO. LXXXIX.-N.S,

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• I discover, also, that this threeness helps me the more, and lifts me the higher, because it baffles me. If I think it more philosophical and simple to conceive God only as one Person, that Person will really be a finite conception, unwittingly though very absurdly taken as infinite. And then, as the God shrinks, the mind freezes. The simplicity it so much admired, after all, brings disappointment. The ease of this philosophic unity is itself a great fuult; for it is as if we had God's measure, and saw his boundaries. He is too clear to be infinite; and, what is even worse, too clear to have his warmth in the soul. . ... Represented as three, God is yet one-the more magnificently one because He is three. The soul bas her sublimation, because she is held in a maze, and God is warm because He is a mystery.'-Pp. 160, 161.

Here the writer is only asserting, in his own language, the dogmatic teaching of the Church universal; and his argument may possibly remind some readers of the language of Möhler, quoted, though in a different connexion, in a recent number of the Christian Remembrancer.'

Then, again, Dr. Bushnell is perfectly free from those theories (so popular in America) of the Universalists and others, who would represent the Almighty as so weakly merciful that He ceases to be just :

• Christ must be preached, not as an Ambassador of pardon simply, but as justification. The rigour of God's integrity, and the sanctity of His lawo, must be maintained. It is not Christianity, as I view it, to go forth and declare that God is so good, so lenient, such a fatherly Being, that He førgives freely. No; God is better than that—so good, so fatherly, that. He will not only remit but will so maintain the nctity of His law as to make us feel them. The let-go system, the overlooking, accommodating, smoothing method of mere leniency, is a virtual surrender of all exactness, order, and law. The law is made void; nothing stands firm. God is a willow, bending to the breath of mortals. There is no throne left, no authority, nothing to move the conscience—therefore, really no goodness. Any doctrine of pardon without justification must of necessity weaken at last, the sense of religion, and it is well if it does not even remove the conception of Divine government itself.'--Pp. 250, 251,

And to prevent any misconception concerning his notion of justification he adds, as it seems to us, very excellently:

Christ must never be preached antinomially, or as a substitute for character. No sucb impression is to be endured. There must be no such jealousy of self-righteousness produced, that our hearers will hardly dare to be righteous at all. The very object for which Christ comes into the world, nay, the object of justification itself, is character, righteousness in the life. The intention is, that the righteousness of the law itself shall at last be fulfilled in us ; that our robes shall be washed and made white in the blood of the Lamb, This mercy is mercy because it ends in character--character renewed, purified, sanctified, made white. Therefore we are to say with our Master himself, “ Blessed”—blessed only—“are ye that hunger and thirst after righteousness." _P. 251.

1 (That the Godhead should be erson utterly inconceivable (das ganz und gar Undenkbare), thoroughly irrational, and opposed to all true speculation.' -Möhler on Islam, &c. (čited in Christian Remembrancer, No. LXXXVII. vol. xxix. p. 145.)

This last quotation, coupled with a passage in another part of Dr. Bushnell's work, affords a hint of the causes which may have originally, perhaps, produced his distrust of dogma. The New England Churches' (as the various denominations are all called in America) appear to have dogmatised, not upon those sacred verities taught in the creeds, and hymns, and liturgies of the early Church, but upon the questions connected with justification. Now, there are several reasons why dogmatism upon these points of theology should be of less value and authority than that of the creeds. In the first place, all doctrine concerning man's justification deals less with objective truth, like that enshrined in the creeds, and more largely with the subjective portions of religion. Hence individual temperament enters into consideration, in a way in which it cannot enter while we are confining our discussions to such doctrines as have been revealed to man concerning the triune God, and the incarnation of the Eternal Son. If, as we suppose all Christians will admit, whosoever is saved gains salvation through the merits of Christ alone, actually wrought or else foreseen, and yet at the same time faith, repentance, and obedience, (the last, of course, including the use of the appointed means of grace, where they may be had,) are necessary conditions of the believer's final safety, then it will follow, from mere varieties of disposition, and culture, and spiritual history, that particular teachers are found to dwell, some more upon the one meritorious Cause, some more upon the requisite conditions. Such difference will frequently be discovered to be one less of principle than of temperament. Moreover, some

Moreover, some of these questions, far from being settled by the united voice of Christendom, have been among the very causes of disunion. Consequently, the formula of different religious communions concerning justification must needs possess less external authority than those time-honoured documents which are the heritage of universal Christendom. (That such is the judgment of the English Church is shown from the fact, that while the creeds are interwoven with her public devotional services, and therefore binding upon all her true children, the Thirty-nine Articles are only required to be signed by her clergy and by certain graduates. And, once more, it is the real Incarnation of the Eternal Word '—the actual coming in the flesh of the Son of God, born, dead, and risen for our salvation--that is the sole basis of our religion: and this, through the divinely appointed means by which its belief and salutary influence is propagated, becomes ' the principle of Christian faith and righteousness. This great 'fact, and not any particular proposition concerning it, however true

or useful in its place, which men may consider as containing the whole idea, or all that is essential to its purpose: this great fact,


' in the totality of its objective character, and in the consequent "totality of its applicable virtue and influence this is the real

Articulus stantis aut cadentis Ecclesiæ.'1 And if, as appears to be the case, Dr. Bushnell has met with men who attempted to dogmatise in such a spirit as to make justification by faith exclude the equally true and important doctrine of a judgment according to works, we can easily understand that such unwarranted limitation of scriptural teaching may have produced in our author's mind that repulsion from dogma, which has now unhappily extended itself even to the Nicene Creed. And, therefore, before passing onward to the less pleasing task of controverting the leading principles of these Discourses, we will express our general agreement with the sentiments of one more passage:

A doctrine of justification by faith is held by many so literal and forensic in its form, that the Gospel of Heaven's love and light is narrowed almost to a superstition. They scarcely dare to entertain the thought of a personal righteousness, or to look upon any such hope as permissible. It implies, they fear, some expectations of being saved, not wholly by the merits of Christ. They cannot even read or hear, without a little jealousy or disturbance of mind, those texts of Scripture that speak of assurance, liberty, a conscience void of offence, victory over sin, a pure heart, a blameless life, and a perfected love. They are so jealous of merit that they make a merit of not having any. They are so resolved on magnifying the grace of God, as almost to think it a crime to believe that the grace of God cau make them any better.'—P. 318.

Palliations such as those already alluded to, and passages of this nature, make us anxious to avow, once for all, that it is the principles of the work, and not its author, that we wish to judge. It is high time to attempt the justification of the charges brought against it.

And firstly, with respect to the functions and powers of language, Dr. Bushnell commences with some remarks upon etymology and syntax, which no one will dispute. They may all, however, be found, we think, in Horne Tooke's ‘Diversions of Purley,' Mr. R. C. Trench's . Lectures on Words,' and the Greek Grammar' of Kühner, so well known to our academical scholars of the last ten years through the translation of Mr. W. E. Jelf. This portion is, however, only prefatory. The reader is by degrees led on to the main point of the dissertation, namely, the position, that as language, when describing immaterial phenomena, is metaphorical and symbolical only, and derived from objects patent to the senses, religious dogmatism is well-nigh, if not quite, impossible. {P. 61.) Now, Dr. Bushnell appears to us at once to overrate and underrate the powers of language; to overrate, at

Mill's Sermons on the Nature of Christianity, p. 55.

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