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arm over the other nations of Europe. But, were he to make the next anniversary of this great day the occasion for the bitterest reproaches that we have not, in the fresh gush of our gratitude for Inkermann, surrendered the political freedom of our English state and adopted the ambitious policy and the despotic government of the Czar, he would adopt a line not less unique than he has chosen for the strange sermon at the head of our article. The plea in justification of the Archdeacon's accusation turns out to be, that, as a nation, we have been morally bound in gratitude to Providence, ever since the 5th of November, 1605, to repudiate that “blasphemy against the Word of God” which is involved in the Protestant watchword of “Religious Liberty." Religious Liberty is an “offence," he tells us, which common gratitude should have induced us to abandon wholly, when, by God's signal mercy, the Anglican Church had been preserved from the snare of her enemies. Indeed, this gentleman really thinks that the Anglican Church, with her apostolic succession, her custody of the sacraments, her uniform creed, and all her divine ordinances, is the only holy church, and therefore the only bulwark against Roman Catholicism. He is one of that ostrich-school of theologians who endeavour to annihilate a pursuing troop of hostile facts, by merely excluding their image from the retina, and resolutely thinking them back into non-existence. He will not see that he is even now, in his own person, asserting this “ blasphemous” religious liberty against the most authoritative representation of the Mother whom he summons all England to obey. Yet, this obstinate and blind dogmatism in the Archdeacon -- this nervous irritability in his own faith—does but indicate that he is half conscious of attempting to defend quite indefensible ground. He has lost all hold of the genuine Protestant faith, and has a vague sympathy with the Roman Catholic, but, as he is not allowed to carry with him even a few private Protestant effects into the Roman Catholic camp, he adopts the opposite tactics, and establishes, not without latent self-reproach, a private Roman Catholic camp on the generous basis of Protestantism. Romanism has departed from the church, whither our Archdeacon dare not follow; he is anxious to persuade himself--and naturally gets irritable in the attempt—that in all essentials its spirit is with him still.

Theological creeds seldom escape the fate of "holy places." The more sacred is the presence which has departed or is departing from them, the more keenly do the occupants feel, and the more reluctant are they to express, the sense of vacancy which steals over them. And the greater the glow of trust with which they formerly held possession of their post, the more sullenly do they fortify the empty sepulchres, the more passionately do they dispute the line of the deserted walls. It is not so only with Romanism. The same thing has happened, nay, happens every day, with Protestantism. It was a saying of Luther's, that the same people who, in his lifetime, would not touch the kernel of his teaching, would be greedy after the shells of it when he was once dead. And so it was, and so it is, and so it will be. The seed of a great faith falls into men's hearts, and God “giveth it another body, as it pleaseth Him ;" the shells alone are treasured up, unchanged, and last the longer without suffering transformation “into something rich and strange," that the germ of their organic life has altogether disappeared, even if it have not been anxiously excavated and its place supplied by the mineral, inorganic cement of theological learning. It is this shelltheology which both shelters within itself, and provokes into activity outside itself, the spirit of scepticism. The dogmatism of half-belief which gradually steals upon the first downright confidence of full belief, leans with a less and less sincere weight on the object of its faith, till at last the bold sceptic who stands upright on his own strength, and will not affect to lean at all, becomes, and is conscious of being, a really stronger man in his isolation and his weakness than those who are painfully endeavouring to avoid putting any strain on the weak threads of a decaying faith. An attempt to appreciate the essence of the two opposite faiths, and the two opposite forms of scepticism, which still contend for the body of the Anglican Church, will help us to estimate more fairly the true position and prospects of the various parties in that church than would be possible, if we were only to criticise the consistency or inconsistency of their present theological positions.

Five-and twenty years ago, Roman Catholicism was almost a fable in England.

hildren were old about it as a branch of ancient history, and taught to connect that superstition very closely with the inability to read and write. The Catholics in

. England “were found in corners, and alleys, and cellars, and the housetops, or in the recesses of the country, cut off from the populous world around them, and dimly seen as if through a mist, or in twilight as ghosts fitting to and fro !" Suddenly there rose up, on the chosen ground of classical learning and among the ablest thinkers of the day, a rumour that Protestantism was reaping what it had not sown- --that it could not have originated the faith which it had inherited. Restless, scrupulous, self-tasking, reasoning, subtle-minded men affirmed that, though the tendencies of their whole nature seemed to

converge upon the Christian Revelation as the very focus of their highest needs, yet that they could never have accepted its fact as their highest certainty without a constantly renewed testimony from an authority above that of individual conviction. They were sure that it was easier to recognize a divine authority than to grasp or compass for themselves divine truth. They thought they could perceive where they ought to obey far more easily than where they ought to believe. And they maintained, too, that the power to obey must be granted first, as the simpler and most practical necessity of life, and that it would draw after it the fulness of belief. Nevertheless, they were not unembarrassed. They felt that they could scarcely faithfully obey on a renture what they did not confidently believe to be divine, though they were clear that the confidence of their belief was to be the reward of their obedience. And so they vacillated long, unable to find satisfying conviction without a rule of action they could wholly accept, and painfully deploring that they had not early and always had a strict and indisputable law of discipline over them, which might have yielded as its natural fruit the faith they now groped after with uncertain hands. And then there grew upon them, more and more powerfully, the fascination of that mighty power, who through the march of centuries, had advanced with a measured tread of her own, unborrowed from her children, a step of which every footfall was a fiat, and the rhythm a faith. It was obviously easy to throw a temporary spell over minds in such a mood; but what is the charm which has power to retain them, after experience of Rome's coarse splendour, and of her vigilant and oppressive rule ?

Rome alone has presented her theology to the world in a wholly institutional form. What Protestants believe, Rome embodies in a visible organism. While they derive the life of the church from their faith, Rome derives her faith from the life of the church. Romanism was a vast organization almost before it held a distinct faith. Rome did not incarnate her dogmas in her ritual, but distilled her ritual into the form of dogmas. She had, indeed, knitted in with her spiritual agency many an act both of conscious and unconscious faith; she had built up her great missionary system on many assumptions both of truth and duty; but on the whole, she acted before she thought, and interpreted her faith under the inspiration of her achievements. Her theology flashed upon her, as it were, when she beheld the ecclesiastical form and order which was growing up out of her own unconscious energy. She solved the mystery of her own success by believing that her institutions were even fuller of the divine power than her thought, that she could more easily draw God down into the bosom of the church by her life, than she could lift up the church to God by her meditation. Wherever the drift of Christian practice seemed to point towards a development of the church's influence, there was a hint which she followed up eagerly to its limits, as the directing finger of a divine hand. And then contemplating her own fresh conquests from a heathen world, under the inspiring consciousness of being set to guide the mightiest and holiest of the world's forces, she did not hesitate to affirm that God was in her institutions, that he was acting through her agency, that he was really placing his divine influences at her disposal, and that in contemplating the orderly system of ecclesiastical life which was rising under her creating hand, she beheld the divine disposition of His living power. Thus, for example, the Christian practice of baptism was, in her hands, an agent of great social influence; and as she witnessed its results in consecrating new multitudes to Christ, and was conscious that her own faith grew in gazing at the act (instead of the virtue of the act having arisen from her faith), she at once affirmed that God had granted a mighty regenerating power to her hand, which did not proceed from, but afterwards passed into, her spirit ; that a grace was granted to her institutions from which her faith was nourished.

Again, the words of the last supper enjoined the celebration of the sacrifice of the cross. Eagerly Rome saw and used the mighty social influence of that divine institution. But here again she seemed to gather faith from the power of the rite. She administered it in weakness, and yet she was the almoner of power; the faith was multiplied in the giving, so that while it seemed too little for a few, it fed multitudes, and she gathered up more than she had divided; it seemed that no virtue went out of her, yet richly it streamed in; in the act itself was the birth of faith ; the power of God was in the elements themselves, for the grace and peace which had not passed through the spirit of the church, returned upon her; and so she gazed till she could see the bread and wine no longer, though their external qualities remained; the essence was transmuted before her eyes into the life of Him who first consecrated them ; the outward signs were but transparencies, through which the living glory gleamed ; that seeming film of physical quality held fast the very presence of the Eternal, and God was perfectly blended with that sign of himself which he had chosen.

This is the doctrine which marks the whole character of the Roman Church. Faith is nourished from the divine institution, not the divine institution by the faith. The Roman the. ology claims for the entire ritual of the church that it is one vast transubstantiation. Every rite which other Christian sects regard as suggesting and shadowing forth the spiritual life of faith, Rome regards as itself the shrine of divine power, as itself radiating light and heat. She believes that the church's ministrations impart more grace to her ministers, than her ministers can impart to their ministrations.* God's power is held to be in the church's actions, and from that centre it flows out on the whole church, alike strengthening the feeble knees of the worshipper, and lifting up the drooping hands of the priest. According to the sacramental system of Rome, neither is it the unity of human faith which binds together the church in one, nor is it the merely inherited commission of the church which holds together human faith; but the vivid electric spark of divine grace shooting, in eternal miracle, through her whole frame, is the true pulse of her immortal life; and this, though it is called down at the bidding of the priesthood, does not proceed out of their life, but into it, where its heavenly fire is no less needed than in the body of the church at large.

There is something in the sacramental system essentially congenial to the Roman character. We read Roman history, and ask ourselves why the records of the greatest nation of the world are so dull and inanimate, why a people that could act so mightily, puts forth so slight a charm over the student's mind? The answer is exactly this :That they were a working nation, engraving for themselves monuments everywhere, but without any play of national mind distinct from, and out of relation to, the external tasks on which they were engaged. Had they possessed richer inward resources of self-occupation, they would have had a more interesting history, it may be, but not such a career.

The very essence of their history is, that they were insatiable in their appetite for new materials to organize --new matter to mould. The Romans had no spontaneous mental or spiritual occupations apart from their will. As a nation they hated external tranquillity, and could find nothing satisfying but administrative and military exploit. Mental life, out of relation to political, social, or domestic institutions, they had almost none. They had no-lyrical movement of spirit like the Greeks, no deep enjoyment of sympathy and sentiment like the Germans. They were made to mould others; and their only reverence for what was divine, was reverence for a moulding power, that shaped order and law out of social and material chaos. They could barely conceive of a free divine spirit in close mental contact with man, like the Jews. With a large and

Technically, the grace received opere operato is more than that received opere operantis.

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