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jurious tendencies; ought he, a good man, to patronize them for the sake of the good end? May he, with some scruples, give up to a charitable indulgence, while by so doing he sustains so illegal and vicious a system, and by his example exposes so many of the young to the seductions and corruptions of games of chance? No popular and successful appeal to young men can be made against lotteries and other demoralizing games of hazard, when men of worth thus patronize the charitable raffle.
It is no way surprising that this generation, and specially within a few years, have revived this immoral and illegal chance gaming. It has been but little discussed of late, and the philanthropic exigencies of the war drew a large part of community toward it unthinking, only that vast sums of money could be raised in this way.
Thousands of the better class in the land have gone into it without thinking that it was either morally or legally wrong. For all such a harsh word would be out of place. They need only the suggestions of God's word and sound morals, the national teachings that we have outlined, and their own reflection.
Of course every philanthropic enterprise and every religious body would sustain by its practices the laws of the State. The church of Christ, specially in New England, has always been an example of good citizenship by her fidelity to civil law and the properly constituted authorities. She never has formally, and ought not indirectly, to go in for nullification. The State properly looks to the church also for an example of careful loyalty to the moral law of God. Any failures will doubtless be corrected in fewer years than they have been coming on. The truth is, almost all community has been unconsciously carried by a great wave of popular error beyond soundings; but we are comforted in noticing within a twelve month that the tide has turned. We are drifting back under moral and state laws.
Christian churches and charitable organizations, with their philanthropic fairs, are discovering that they can not properly or successfully accomplish their worthy aims by a sacrifice of statute law and good morals.
Persons prone to gaming or easily tempted, are unable, even as the must puritanical moralist, to mark any logical or theoretical difference between the “splendid chances” of the confessed lottery, and the chances in the Charity Fair to draw a piano or ottoman, a fur robe or a ring cake. And practically how steep is the grade from this charitable raffle to the gambling lottery? And will the young man, a brother, son, or friend, successful in the former, be likely to pause before the startling and tempting inducements of the latter? May not the beauty, grace and fascination of the raffle be regarded as gaming made easy for the scrupulous ?
As showing the rising tone of moral feeling on the subject of religious and charitable raffles, we have been pleased to see that within a year, grand juries in several States have been charged to take cognizance of them, as a breach of the law. Judge Scott of New York charged the grand jury of King's County that “the disposal of goods by chance at church fairs, is contrary to the laws, and ought to be so treated. The persons who engage
in these lotteries should be the first to set an example of obedience to the law.” Similar charges have recently been given in other States, and leading secular newspapers are urging the courts to fidelity to law and good morals in this thing. We hail these indications of a returning tide. But the question does not call for argument.
Few, if any, are willing to defend lotteries and raffles in view of the history we have sketched, and in the face of the almost universal legislation against them. The two are one, and stand or fall together in the argument. Suggestion alone, we think, is needed to bring the humane and charitable heart of the community back into loyalty to the laws of the State, and to the laws of God.
In order to state this doctrine, it will be necessary to speak of its antecedents.
Christianity at the start took a middle ground between Judaism and Paganism, in its doctrinal conceptions of the being of God. In tracing back that which appeared to be superhuman in the Saviour, to the divine being himself, Christianity must avoid the multiplication of gods, and thus escape from Paganism; while, upon the other hand, in teaching the unity of God, it must avoid the Jewish denial of all distinctive difference in the Godhead, and so escape the Jewish rejection of Christ as the Son of God. According to the Jews, God in his unity remained in a state of separation from man. This doctrine carried out must end in Deisin ; for logically, it could not allow either that God could be manifest in the flesh by the incarnation, or even that any written revelation of God to man could ever be given.
According to the Pagan conception of many gods, or more gods than one in any sense, the logical result must be Pantheism : in which it would appear that everything is a manifestation of God, but in such a way as to shut out all idea of bis personality, and in such a way as to show that there could be no special revelation since everything would be a revelation. In the effort to advance such a doctrine of Christ and his relation to the Father, as should oppose Paganism on the one hand and Judaism on the other, and at the same time maintain the true unity of God, there arose a sect known as Monarchians. The point to be maintained at all hazards, was, that God was a Monarch : the alone autocrat, and sole ruler. The determination was, to evolve such a doctrine of the person of Christ, as should be consistent with this view of God.
To accomplish this, there arose two classes of Monarchians. The first of these classes recognized in Christ nothing but the man. There was nothing of the divine in him. In their view, to acknowledge the divine in Christ, must lead to the denial of the unity of God, and end in Paganism. Therefore, this class of Monarchians saw in Christ only the human element.
But the second class of Monarchians saw in Christ nothing but the God, and wholly overlooked or suppressed the human element. In their view, the humanity of Christ was only an appearance of humanity. It was only transient; it was a removeable veil, serving only for the visible manifestation of God.
Thus while both of these classes were Monarchians, and made it their chief aim to maintain the unity of God, they were opposed to each other as to their method of doing it. The first class maintained the divine unity by the declaration that Christ was only a man ; the second class maintained the divine unity by the declaration that Christ was only, and very God, and that he had only the show or semblance of humanity. With the first class we have nothing further to do in stating the doctrine of Sabellianism, only that we may say in passing, that it does not seem to have had much influence in the early history of the church. The doctrine was offensive to the piety of the church from the fact that it so plainly dishonored Christ, making him only a man; while its advocates were considered by the devout much in the light of such men as Strauss and Theodore Parker of our times.
It was different with the second class of Monarchians, for they appeared to honor Christ in assuming that he was only divine. They claimed this in all their arguments. Of course, in considering the person of Christ, the constant endeavor was to sink the human and elevate the divine. Hence the declaration was made, as by Beryllus, bishop of Bostra, in Arabia, that Christ had no human soul. He had the body, the flesh, of a man; but instead of a human, intelligent soul, he had the divine intelligence, and was, as to the intelligent soul, very God. The humanity of Christ, therefore, was not a perfect humanity, for he had only the body, only the corporeal of a man; while in everything else he was very God.
Coming now to Sabellius, who was a Monarchian of the second class, we find him endorsing the statement of Beryllus, that Christ had no human soul. As some have disputed this, it is necessary to observe that according to the anthropology of the times, there was Soma, the body ; Psuke, the breath of life, or the spirit ; and Nous, the intelligent reason. In this philosophy of man, the Soma and the Psuke belong to the human body; while the Nous is that which was wanting in the semblance of humanity which belonged to Christ, its place being supplied by the divine intelligence, God himself. Thus, according to Sabellius, the humanity of Christ was not a complete humanity, it was only a transitory shape, or appearance, in which God made a revelation of himself. So far, Sabellius was only a Monarchian. In advance of the second class of Monarchians that preceded him, he declared that the Holy Spirit was only another form of manifestation of the same one God, or Monarch. Thus the doctrine of the Holy Spirit was all in which Sabellius made any deviation from the strict Monarchianism that preceded him. In short he declared that "the Father remains the same, but evolves himself in the Son, and in the Spirit.” Sabellius completed his scheme of a trinity by putting the Spirit in the same relation to God as that of Christ to God, which was already received. It was a trinity in which the same one God appeared, only in the discharge of different offices, or modes of operation. He was the same God in person, who acted now as God the Father, now as God in Christ, and now as God the Spirit. This trinity was simply the self-evolution of the one Monarch into these several offices or modes of operation.
We have spoken of Sabellius as adding to the Monarchian speculation the doctrine of the Holy Spirit. It is plain that he was led to this under pressure of the doctrine of the Spirit advanced by the Montanists, who were in those times something like our Spiritualists. They held that Christ was only a man, but that he was a good inedium, as we should say; and that as a good medium of the Spirit, he accomplished many wonderful works. In opposition to the Montanists, Sabellius would show that Christ was more than a mere man, that he was verily God; and in like manner, he would raise the Holy Spirit from the vulgar idea of the Montanists to that of the Holy Spirit being one manifestation of God. So far, it is evident that the intention of Sabellius in his scheme of a trinity