« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »
There is not a man in the land that does not know it, and feel it. We wish, therefore, all happiness to Russia, in the State and in the Church. The Church of Russia, no doubt, has a great work in Asia to do.
And not less, we believe, has our own National Church. With the same principles and interests, also, only State-free,the Holy Scriptures open to all men,—the pure Nicene and Apostolic Creeds,—the Apostolic Church, in its Three-fold Ministry, and a primitive and holy missionary life and zeal,free, also, as the Russian Church is, from all the curses of European Christianity, its Popery, its Calvinism, its Rationalistic Lutheranism, its Zwinglianism.
We anticipate this great nation's growth towards the Eastern Ocean and Asia. We anticipate the progress of the Church, especially in the Great West, and then our ultimate Missionary work on the greatest of Continents and the greatest of Oceans. It will come, naturally, easily, and quietly, in its time, and we, as a Church and a people, must look out, most assuredly, for its coming. For the work that God has intended to be done upon the earth will, most certainly, be done. And if those into whose hands it is first given fail, from the most unexpected regions, even from lands unknown and unpeopled, He will raise up the proper instruments.
NOTICES OF BOOKS.
AN EXPOSITION OF THE THIRTY-NINE ARTICLES, HISTORICAL AND
DOCTRINAL. By EDWARD Harold Browve, D. D., Lord Bishop of Ely. First American from the Fifth English Edition. Edited with Notes by J. WILLIAMS, D. D., Bishop of Connecticut. New York: H. B. Durand. 1865. 8vo., pp. 871.
At length Mr. Durand has given to American Churchmen, and especially to the Clergy and Theological Students, the work which has so long been promised. Published about ten years ago, in the form of Lectures, when the Bishop was Divinity Professor at Cambridge, the work has already reached a fifth edition in England, and has been adopted as a text-book in most English and Colonial Theological Colleges. After an Introduction of about a dozen pages, mostly historical, the author states the main design of the work, which is “to interpret and explain the Articles of the Church, which bind the consciences of her Clergy, according to their natural and genuine meaning; and to prove that meaning to be both Scriptural and Catholic." Valuable as this elaborate treatise will prove to all, there are two classes of persons who may derive special benefit from it; those who persist in attributing to the Thirty-Nine Articles a Calvinistic origin and signification; and those who, with Romish proclivities on certain points, subscribe to the Articles in a non-natural sense. The first class of such persons the Bishop proves to be most certainly mistaken; the second he convicts of downright dishonesty. The author supposes that the Articles, to be signed by all the Clergy, should be, like the Church herself, comprehensive and Catholic, admitting of a certain degree of diversity of interpretation, while yet there is firm " adherence and conformity to those great Catholic truths which the primitive Christians lived by and died for.” The Articles, as the author shows, have this character. Much as they have been disparaged by some among us, it is yet certain, as the learned Dr. Jarvis said of them, in his “No Union with Rome,"_" The Articles drawn up with wonderful precision, exhibiting a consummate knowledge of Catholic antiquity, and a most acute and practised skill in the subtleties of scholastic theology, we know not whether most to admire their learning, acumen, or moderation. They neutralize and render harmless every extravagance of opinion.” Prepared when Romish corruption had become intolerable, and when Private Judgment had given birth to a swarm of metaphysical subtleties and false interpretations of Scripture, the Articles were finally matured, after nearly thirty years of deliberation and discussion, upon a basis which cannot be overthrown.
This characteristic of Bishop Browne's Exposition, its proof that the Thirty-Nine Articles of the English Church herself are truly Catholic, is one of its marked features. An intelligent Roman priest in India, “Father Felix,” sat down to refute the book, and was himself converted by it to true Catholicity, and is now doing a good work for the Primitive Church, among the Romish priests and laity in Si. cily, and in the employ of the Venerable Society.
In the plan of this work, the Bishop prefixes to his exposition of each Article a historical sketch of the Doctrine of the Article; and, brief as the statement necessarily is, there is not a prominent error in the primitive or modern Church pertaining to the Doctrine of the Article, which is not noticed. These historical portions of the work are exceedingly important and valuable. With the aid of full references in the foot-notes, they enable the reader to pursue the investigation to his abundant satisfaction. For example, the historical treatises on the Articles “Of Original or Birth-Sin,” “Of Free Will,” “Of the Justification of Man,” “Of Sin after Baptism," " Of Baptism," “Of the Lord's Supper," brief as they are, comprise an amount of information which cannot be found elsewhere within the same compass. The Second Section under each Article gives compactly the Scripture proof of the Doctrine contained in the Article. While there are expressions in the work which we would not use, yet its tone is throughout true and firm, and its language always kind and considerate. The Notes of the American Editor, Bishop Williams, though few and brief, add essentially to the value of the volume, and his strong endorsement of it, after many years of use in the instruction of his own theological students, is recommendation sufficient to give it that general circulation which it deserves.
HISTORY OF ENGLAND, from the Fall of Wolsey to the Death of Eliz
abeth. By JAMES ANTHONY FROUDE, M. A., late Fellow of Eseeter College, Oxford. Vols. I. and II. Small 8vo. New York : Charles Scribner & Co. 1865. pp. 447, 501.
This James A. Froude was brother to Richard H. Froude, whose name appeared so prominently in the earlier stages of the Oxford Tract movement, and whose death occurred before that movement reached its crisis. The personal career of the two Froudes is, in many respects, a counterpart to that of the two Newmans. Richard H. Froude did not live to follow John Henry Newman to Rome, and James Anthony Froude never went as far as Francis W. Newman in bold and barefaced infidelity; yet his Nemesis of Faith,” as our readers will remember, and which appeared in 1849, was a thoroughly bad book, and was almost as mischievous as Newman's book on the Soul. It was a book which revealed the religious character of the man, his beliefs and his unbeliefs, his struggles and his doubts, and his despairs. Driven by his own perturbed spirit, first from faith in the Bible, and then from faith in the Church, from the cold intellectualism of mere Protestantism, and from the mechanical belief of Romanism, he finally sought refuge in the reckless sneering cynicism of Carlyle
Yet the wail of anguish which he sent up as the conclusion of his search, showed that he had not, and, in such a haven, could not find, that rest which he sought. Aside from other external causes, there was, and is, a radical defect in the man's mind, which is the secret of his former book, the “ Nemesis of Faith,” and which characterizes thoroughly and constantly the History of England, of which the two first Volumes are now before us. The author lacks faith in God, faith in man, faith in virtue. He seems to see in Religion, whether in the Church, the State, or the Family, only one ever-present sham. The only really ruling principle, which he seems to believe in, is sheer selfishness.
We have drawn this portrait of the man, that we may be prepared to read aright his History of that most stirring and eventful period, which he has made the subject of his elaborate work,—the Early Years of the English Reformation. It appeared in England in eight volumes, and has already reached its fourth edition. He has had access to authorities not hitherto used by any historian. The complete collection of the State Papers of the reign of Henry VIII, only a portion of which were accessible to Lingard, were placed in his hands. Sir Francis Palgrave, also, gave him the use of a large manuscript collection of copies of Letters, Minutes of Councils, Theological Tracts, Parliamentary Petitions, Depositions of Trials, &c. &c., all relating to that period of the Reformation. Mr. Froude writes with unquestionable power. As a•historian he has great faults and great excellencies. He knows nothing of generalizations. He seems incapable of comprehending the philosophy of History, those broad and comprehensive views where events are read alike in their remote causes and their ultimate results. In this respect, he is most unlike the better class of historians, as Hume and Hallam. He holds only to the “individualizing theory” of History; and his glowing, lively, sparkling pages, are a series of historical portraits, or vivid descriptions of prominent events. These two volumes are wholly taken up with the times of Henry VIII. The author boldly attempts to reverse the popular judg. ment of that monarch, whom he defends, eulogizes, and almost idolizes. He sometimes not only shocks our prejudices, if we have any, but contradicts our matured estimates of certain prominent national events; and not unfrequently he fights vigorously a mere man of straw, wbich he himself has set up. Being what Dr. Johnson calls “ a good hater,” he dashes into that field of fierce controversy, as the old knights rushed into the tournament. And yet, indeed, for these very reasons he is worth reading. In depicting the actors and the motives of that great era, the English Reformation, as it affected Society, the Church and the State, we place not the slightest confidence in his opinion or judgment; his facts-if they are facts—we are bound to account for.
We have said enough by way of introduction, to a work which Messrs. Scribner & Co. are re-publishing, with their accustomed liberality and good taste, and which will of course be extensively read. VOL. XVII.
Social STATICS, or the Conditions Essential to Human Happiness
Specified, and the First of them Developed. By HERBERT SpenCER, Author of “Illustrations of Progress,” “ First Principles,” &c. &c.; with a Notice of the Author, and a Steel Portrait. New York: D. Appleton & Co. 1865. 12mo., pp. 523.
Perhaps we ought to thank both the author and the publishers for this book. Not because it is a good book;—far from it. It is a very bad book; but it is a good Refutation of a “Development” or “Evolution” Philosophy, of which its author is the founder. We thought that we had given a pretty satisfactory refutation of that Philosophy, in our two articles on the subject, in the October and January Nos. of our Review. But nothing that we have said, and nothing that any man has said or can say, could so completely and so effectually refute his Philosophy, as this exposition of its practical bearings, by the author himself.
Although this volume was written before “ the First Principles," it is issued since that was written; and with the assurance by the author, that “he adheres to the leading principles set forth,”—“though not prepared to abide by all the detailed applications of them.” The principles of action set forth in this volume, must therefore be accepted as the legitimate result of the Evolution-Philosophy; and such a reductio ad absurdum was never before presented to the world! A Moral and Political Philosophy, which leaves each individual, or any two or more, at liberty to go into any amount of sensual indulgence or gratification; which abolishes all authority in the family of the busband over the wife, and of parents over the children ; and teaches that in the State every individual has the right “to ignore the State,” to “secede from it,” and that “all coercion," whether in the family or in the State, whether designed to restrain self-willed children in the family, or thieves, burglars and murderers in the State, or to punish them for the wrongs they may have done, or the crimes they may have. committed, or even for the purpose of preventing them from committing, “is immoral," and wrong—is certainly no commendation of the “ First Principles” on which it is founded; or rather, we should say, is their sufficient refutation. And yet, such are “the leading principles" set forth in the book before us, sanctioned by the author, Nov., 1864.
There is one other feature of this book to which we call attention. Our author is set against all poor rates, or other means of support for the poor, except such as the benevolent may willingly and unsolicited give. And it is doubtful whether he would have even this relief very plentifully supplied. We quote the following as a sample, and to avoid all possibility of doing the author injustice. He says, p. 354: “ It seems hard, that an unskillfulness which, with all his efforts, he cannot overcome, should entail hunger upon the artisan. It seems hard, that a laborer, incapacitated by sickness from competing with his stronger fellows, should have to bear the resulting privations. It seems hard, that widows and orphans should be left to struggle for life or death. Nevertheless, when regarded not separately, but in connection with the interests of universal humanity, these barsh fatali.