« 이전계속 »
of God; if we accept Him, we of course accept these views, and are ready to receive the doctrines of geology which declare that God has frequently acted upon our planet in circumscribed limits and at definite times, fulfilling through the long course of geological changes one plan, which He had in view from the beginning, the preparation of the earth for the abode of his children, — those doctrines of physics which find in all material things the expressions of wisdom and of personal kindness, — those doctrines of history which recognize a ruling Providence, and devoutly acknowledge that
“ There 's a divinity that shapes our ends,
Rough hew them as we will."
No sane man can deny that the reception or rejection of Christ will naturally have a tendency to affect the moral character of the pupil. To reject him and his doctrines, — to claim that he was inspired in no other sense and in no other degree than we may each of us be inspired, if we will pay the price, — what can be the effect upon us if not to weaken in us the sentiment of reverence, and to strengthen out of due proportion the consciousness of our own dignity and worth? But to admit the authority of Jesus, — to acknowledge and open our hearts to the love of Him who though he was rich yet for our sakes became poor, who though clothed
with divine powers did not ask divine honors, but submitted to poverty, to suffering, and to death, in patient attestation of his mission, still offering forgiveness and help from God to those who were seeking his life ; to admit the authority of such a master, — what can its natural tendency be, if not to soften the fiercer passions of the believer, and to bring him, at least partially, into a likeness of this divine example ?
Nor can any sane man deny that the acceptance or rejection of the claims of Jesus to direct authority from God, must in general have a marked effect upon the religious character of the pupil. Few men have that strength and depth of religious character, which can make them, after rejecting the claims of Jesus to direct authority, feel that in their own souls they have a direct vision of religious truth, — a direct internal vision of the presence of an infinite Father. With by far the larger part of the human race, experience has shown that if they do not see God revealed in the face of Jesus Christ, they do not see him clearly at all; their rejection of Jesus' authority is usually, and I think naturally, followed by their neglect of Jesus' precept to pray, by their disbelief in his doctrine of a special Providence, and finally, by a rejection of his doctrine of the Fatherhood of God. When a man rejects the evidences of Christianity, he usually, and I think naturally, slides towards Pantheistic views of the divine nature.
unjust in compelling them to pay taxes to sustain such schools ?
The writer of this article is a Protestant of the most radical typ: does not stop with Martin Luther, but who protests against all obs!
It must therefore, I hold, be conceded on all sides, that the Christian religion is of such importance, in its connection with physical, historical, metaphysical, moral, and religious truth, as to demand a place in every scheme of public instruction, in spite of the acknowledged fact that there are those who reject its claims to be a revealed religion. But if we bring it into our public instruction, how shall we bring it in, as believers or as unbelievers ? Surely those who disagree with us in our convictions would not ask us to teach what we think falsehood. If it is, as I have endeavored to show, necessary for us to speak on religious themes, and to discuss the claims of Christ as the Messiah, the King of the new kingdom of God, we must of course speak as we believe. It may be right for us to acknowledge to our pupils the existence of other opinions; it may even be right for us to show to them the reasons adduced by unbelievers for rejecting the gospels. But it is certainly more imperative upon us, according to all the principles which regulate the sphere of education, to show our pupils the reasons for thinking the arguments of unbelievers delusive sophistry, our reasons for thinking that the evidence of the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead is stronger than the evidence for any other historical fact whatever. We are bound, by every principle which can actuate or guide us in the sphere of education, to express to our pupils our view of the labors of the great schools of historical, philo
logical, and metaphysical critics ; our conviction that,
What then, it may be asked, is to hinder this course
I answer, No! There is no sect of Christians who will not confess that in the hearty and humble recognition of the Apostle's Creed lies all that is fundamental in Christianity. The greatest diversities perhaps existing in the Christian church, are those between Augustine's views and those of Pelagius on predestination and freewill; and those between Papists, Congregationalists, and the New Jerusalem Church, on the source of the light by which we are
- - --
unjust in compelling them to pay taxes to sustain such schools ?
The writer of this article is a Protestant of the most radical ty does not stop with Martin Luther, but who protests against all obs
to read the Scriptures. These diversities are so great and so nearly fundamental, that they doubtless affect in some degree our views of truth in other matters. In a Sunday school they may be taught, and in a theological school they must be thoroughly discussed; there are, indeed, those who feel that these points are sufficiently important in their bearing upon the whole field of culture, to demand their introduction into colleges. Hence we have, in various parts of the country, colleges under the special patronage of particular sects of the Christian church. If any man feel that the importance of these views is great enough to demand their introduction into the college course, he is of course right in sustaining such colleges. But the highest authorities can be quoted from those holding each of the five different opinions which I have named, to the effect that their own opinions are not absolutely essential to the Gospel, but that their opponents may hold the essential body of Christian truth in spite of their error; and hence those opinions cannot be of sufficient importance to claim their introduction into the common schools.
The points on which the various sects differ are, in general, very much less important than the five points of predestination, freewill, the right of private judgment, the authority of the church to interpret Scripture, and the claims of Emanuel Swedenborg, and if these five are not of sufficient importance to demand their introduction into the common school,