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good for nothing; if not, he must be in possession of very little intellect to imagine that he can put this construction upon such a well-known treatise as that of Marsh. As another proof of Mr. Taylor's misrepresentations, his manner of quoting and speaking of the labors of Dr. Lardner, in numerous instances, appears in the following. Dr. Lardner, in view of the various knowledge of different languages, histories, and other documents necessary for the critical study of the Scriptures, says, “ The history of the New Testament is attended with many difficulties." * mark, which evidently refers to the state of the text, rather than to the contents of the Scriptures, Mr. Taylor is determined to have his readers suppose, was said of the facts and incidents therein contained. He asks (p. 138), “What could he mean by difficulties, but appearances of being untrue ? and he speaks of Dr. Lardner's valuable labors as an attempt at “making what he virtually admits appears to be falsehood, appear to be truth."

We know of no purpose to be answered by pursuing this subject any further. There is much in Mr. Taylor's “Diege. sis," which we have not hinted at, because it has been so often discussed, that our eyes ache at the very sight of the paper which contains it. Could we take hold of anything further in the shape of an argument, we would most readily examine its merits. But here are all the old stories of pious frauds, of pretended miracles, forged writings, and many other impositions, all of great value in attesting the merits of others which they counterfeited, but good, at the present day, for nothing else; we will leave Mr. Taylor in undisputed possession of them. Here, too, are charges of interpolation in the writings of Christians and Pagans, which are sometimes quoted in aid of the external evidences of Christianity; these we shall not attempt to vindicate, as their genuineness has been allowed by much wiser unbelievers than the author of the “Diegesis." Then we have the old objection to the argument drawn from martyrdom, with this slight variation only from the generality of his own persuasion, that, after a very free use of their arguments, he concludes by denying that its validity has ever been tried, that is, that there ever have been any martyrs. Lastly, we have

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* Lardner's Credibility, Vol. I.

a very general collection of the testimonies of the early Fathers of the Church, with each of whom Mr. Taylor seems at variance, and by various means would weaken their evidence. We are glad, however, that he has inserted so long a list; for, thoug he probably did it to make a book,” he has put it in the power of any reader who is wise, to add much, very much, to the external defences of his Christian faith.

We have thus given as fair and as plain a statement, as we were able in our necessary limits to do, of the character of Mr. Taylor and of his “Diegesis.” How far he is deserving of the eulogiums bestowed upon his talents by unbelievers, and how far bis book is, as asserted by them, a satisfactory and invincible refutation of the authority of the Christian Religion, we leave to the judgment of our readers. The “Diegesis” bas obtained a wide and rapid circulation over England and our own country ; and if it has fallen into the hands of any who are willing to confide in the ability and integrity of its author, it will, perhaps, do some harm. There are, undoubtedly, a few ignorant and thoughtless persons, who will be misled by what may appear to them the candid and disinterested confessions of one who was formerly a Christian minister. A inistaken idea, that it was the expression and publication of his doubts, rather than his disorganizing journeys over the country, exciting discontent and riots, which has immured him in a prison, may raise a sympathy in his behalf. Such friends, if he have them,

. need to be better informed. His greatest influence, however, is over those, who, like himself, profess to believe that religion is an enemy to civilized society ; that it has in reality no proper abode in the heart of man, and is not necessary to constitute or increase his happiness. Some restless spirits have, we know, already adopted the maxim, and by setting at defiance, not only the requisitions of religion, but likewise the plainest dictates of reason and conscience, have shown how rigidly they mean to follow it. Let such men use, if they please, the dubious phrase of

persecution and intolerance," as a spell against morality and law; they must, nevertheless, be convinced that the lives, property, and happiness of their fellow men are sacred possessions, and must be protected, if force and confinement are needed in their support. We shall expect to be an

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swered with the oft-repeated maxim, that “God is able to avenge his own wrongs ; we know that he can, and we believe that he will. But when the profligate and abandoned, behind the veil of denying their Maker, would thence hope for impunity in their excesses, man, in his turn, is able and bound to defend his rights.

We are led to ask, What has Mr. Taylor accomplished in his labors ? He has attempted to overthrow the Christian Religion, and, so far from having succeeded, he has added one more to a long list of those wlo have Jabored with as little success, as if they had attempted to blot the sun from the heavens. Considered as an attack upon the Evidences of Christianity, the “Diegesis” is utterly harmless, at least with persons of sound judgment, and well-regulated, reflecting minds. We know not what are Mr. Taylor's ideas of a Christian faith, but he appears to consider it, as the result of the knowledge of a few names and certain combinations of letters. If such is the faith of any one, we care not how soon it is overthrown. Such, however, forms no part of the faith of an enlightened Christian. He who would disturb the evidences of Christianity, has more to do than to scrape together the shreds of Pagan Mythology, and base his positions upon a few extracis from any number of authors, whether they are fairly represented or not. We could wish for an unbeliever,'no stronger conviction of the value of Christianity, than would necessarily result from a wise survey of what he must do to overthrow it. He may object that truths of so much moment should not have been earlier communicated, but he must be able to point out a fitter time for the revelation than that in which it was actually given. The unbeliever may speak of Christianity as indebted for some of its truths to Paganism ; but he must explain what there was of magic in the words of those Jewish fishermen, which quenched the altars in the four hundred and fifty temples of the eternal city, and closed for ever the mouths of the oracles, to which, till then, the wisest men in the world had listened with profound reverence. Nor are such deep-drawn traces the only marks to which Christianity points for its evidence. There is the character of the Saviour ; an exhibition of the most profound wisdom, and the loftiest moral excellence ; humility, purity, and benevolence in perfect harmony; a sanctity of character, which a single temptation never enticed from the path of rectitude with the tenderest compassion for the failings of others; a disregard of self which endured even unto death, and a sympathy which wept tears of anguish at the deserved sufferings about to fall upon those who mocked and crucified him. Then, too, his instructions, as now in our hands, after the chances of so long and so far a transmission ; — whether we look at the unequalled sublimity of their diction, or the consummate wisdom which pervades them ; - searching the very bottom of the heart, and comprehending the passing duties of an hour, as well as the unremitted obligations of a life; eminently adapted for those to whom they were first delivered, and so full of the seeds of truth, that society will never reach that point, when it will look in vain in the New Testament, for counsel, direction, and incitement. Besides this, there is likewise all that experimental heart-evidence, which those who have ever studied the Scriptures, as they should be studied, could never lose, if the sacred records were to be lost to them for ever. There is a witness in the heart, which, in proportion as we yield ourselves to the direction of our higher po rs, tells us that in the faithful obedience of the Scriptures, we are acquiring a knowledge of God and of our own natures, without which we do indeed “know but in part.” It is the impulse of our minds, as well as the desire of our hearts, to acquaint ourselves with those truths which are to be found only in the Scriptures. We recognise in the Being there revealed, the Father of our own spirits ; and acknowledge that it is only by walking in the path there marked out for us, that we can connect the ray of light within us, with the flood of glory from which it emanates.

Such are some of the evidences of our faith; absolutely inexplicable upon any other hypothesis, than that the Author of nature has given to 'man an intelligible revelation of his will, adapted alike to the highest powers of his spiritual nature, and to the marked deficiencies of his earthly condition. He who would otherwise explain them, must be a philosopher indeed. He must show us imperfections in the character of the Saviour, and, either from his own knowledge or his imagination, must delineate as a model of perfection,

a a different combination of the active virtues. He must describe a character, which will appear more fitted for our

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VOL. XVII. - N. S. VOL. XII. NO. III.

imitation, when we view ourselves, not as mere spectators of heroic action, but as imperfect, dying men, the most dependent beings in creation, subject to affliction in a thousand forms, but still possessing affections and sympathies, by which, when properly exercised, we may advance our own and the happiness of others. He must show, that human nature has powers which Christianity does not recognise, aspirations which she does not cherish, and cannot conduct to the desired object. He must show, that, as the circle of intelligence is widened around us, we can discern truths within our reach, which Christianity would forbid us to acquire, by cramping the energies, or impeding the growth, of those faculties, by which alone we may comprehend them. He must show, that he has already apprehended all that Christianity contains of spiritual truth, that he understands the sublime extent of its revelations, and is still unsatisfied, still urged on by his own powers, still desirous to press on to higher attainments, if he could but find a guide to point out the way.

ART. V. - Dacre: a Novel. Edited by the Countess OF

MORLEY. In 3 volumes. London. 1834. .

The word novel, is said to be derived from the Italian word novella (news). It is now used to signify works of imagination, in which persons and scenes are represented. Works of this character are new, in comparison with many other literary productions; yet, their adaptation to interest, and to please, is founded in human qualities, well known in most ages and countries. The power of rational beings to associate themselves with persons and events, long gone by; sympathy in the woes and joys of others; propensity to follow out a chain of occurrences ; forgetfulness of one's own physical existence, while the mind is ranging wheresoever fancy can lead the way, may be among the reasons why novels are always read with avidity.

The novel is limited to descriptions and narrations of persons and scenes, within the range of probability. When this limit is transcended, the department of romance is in

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