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whether the preacher were a married man, or bachelor, and preached to a sea-faring or agricultural people. We have heard of a venerable pastor, along the Sound, who met his people after one of those terrible steamboat disasters, which thrilled the country with horror, and although his own congregation came together bowed down in participation with the general distress, he neither alluded to it in sermon or prayer. But such cases are rare now, and will be still rarer hereafter; we have indeed other besetments : we sometimes fear lest the pulpit be perverted from its sacred uses, and while degrading the public taste, be itself degraded and lose the respect which it retained notwithstanding its comparative powerlessness ; our pulpits have come down architecturally nearer the pews, and sometimes morally below them, but we do not expect to see them, though made of marble, occupied again by a petrified minister.

These remarks, however, have drawn us aside from our intended track of thought. Dr. Huntington's sermons are vital and vitalizing, and like Bushnell's and Robertson's, will elevate the character and increase the usefulness of the pulpit ; and they have another attraction,—to literary they add a theological interest. Nay, and more than this, it is still theology in the concrete, historical and personal; it is the portraying of the process by which he has been led out of the Unitarianism of his early ministry into a distinct and positive Trinitarianism. His previous publication, Sermons to the People, was indeed Evangelical in the strict sense of the term, and contained an emphatic declaration of belief in the Deity of Christ, and by its whole spirit commended itself to general confidence and acceptance. But the present volume witnesses to a progress in the author's mind, by the freeness with which he adopts the phraseology of our orthodox standards and symbols. The word “Trinity” has not the merit of being a Scriptural one, and for a time Dr. Huntington refrained from using it, while he taught the doctrine substantially for which the word stood as a representative. He seems to have found himself constrained to accept the term out of loyalty to the truth it expessed. VOL. XVIII.


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“The term Trinity,he writes, “is not applied to the doctrine in the Bible; but is a definite and just description of what the Bible teaches; and there is no reason why it should not be adopted and used. It is sanctioned by the venerable and hallowed custom of Christian centuries, and of innumerable hosts of confessors, sages, and saints. There is an especial reason for using it, if from its omission the inference should be anywhere drawn that the truth itself, which the term conveys, is denied. Calvin said he was willing that the name Trinity' should be buried and forgot,' if only this could be the accepted faith of all,—that Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, each distinguished by a peculiar property, are one God. Equally willing ought we to be to take and assert that name, if thereby we may render to this acceptance of faith’any more unambiguous or unreserved honor.”—p. 357.

The above is an extract from the twentieth sermon, around which the chief interest of the volume, theologically at least, gathers. It is founded upon our Lord's words, Matt. xxviii, 19, “Go ye therefore and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost;” and is entitled, “Life, Salvation and Comfort for Man in the Divine Trinity.” It is a precise statement of the orthodox and church doctrine of the Holy Trinity; we know not where we can find a better; and it cannot fail to be acceptable and strengthening to all classes of believers in this central doctrine of the Evangelical system. We should hope it will also be considered with candor and kindness by those from whose faith he has separated himself and which he opposes, for the sermon is not more distinguished by the explicitness and emphasis of its Trinitarianism, than by the justice and charity it breathes toward the advocates of Unitarianism. We cite the following passage, as beautifully blending the affirmation of this cherished doctrine of the Christian Catholic Church, with an affectionate and tender spirit toward those who deny it.

“Let the solemn and tender spirit of that parting scene where the doctrine was announced with such august authority be given to our unworthy attempt to reaffirm it! It ought to be the last of all subjects to be handled in a hard, technical, jejune, or merely dogmatic treatment. Still less should the sharp, fierce temper of dialectical ambition or partisan controversy intrude to embitter the

discussion. How different might have been the result, for the interests of a true theology and an undefiled religion, if, in their arguments and expostulations for their Master's divinity, believers had always remembered the gentleness of his example! May that Lord of perfect love breathe a better influence over the studies, reasonings, and persuasions of those who seek to behold and publish his glory! No apprehension, however clear or deep, of the great reality of the Three-in-one can justify a defense with the unhallowed weapons of pride, de. nunciation, or dogmatism. We must remember there is also a threefold unity of the complete human goodness, as of the being of our God, and that of this charity is the perfect bond. If we break it, earnestness may plead in extenuation for us, but it never expunges the wrong. And with charity let us try to keep humility ;-try to keep it the more, since one of the plainest offices of the special mystery of faith before us is to require and preserve this lowliness of the Christian mind. Where the arrogant, self-asserting intellect has to veil its face, presumption in judgment may well lie still. If in all the circle of sacred themes there is one where both the dryness of scholastic speculation and the acerbity of polemies should be laid aside, where the method should be spiritual, the tone derout, and all the thoughts penetrated and tempered with the fragancy of holy affections, it surely is this. *

"It may furnish an aid to this catholicity, as it certainly is an impressive testimony to the doctrine itself, that the Christian world has been so generally agreed in it. Truth is not determioed by majorities; and yet it would be contrary to the laws of our constitution not to be affected by a testimony so vast, uniform, and sacred as that which is rendered by the common belief of Christian history and the Christian countries to the truth of the Trinity. There is something extremely painful, not to say irreverent, towards the Providence which has watched and led the true Christian Israel, in presuming that a tenet so emphatically and gladly received in all the ages and regions of Christendom as almost literally to meet the terms of the test of Vincentius,- believed always, every. abere, and by all, t-is unfounded in revelation and truth. Such a conclusion puts an aspect of uncertainty over the mind of the Church scarcely consistent with any tolerable confidence in that great promise of the Master, that he would be with his own all days. We travel abroad through these converted lands, over the round world. We enter, at the call of the Sabbath morning light, the place of assembled worshipers : let it be the newly-planted conventicle on the edge of the Western forest, or the missionary station at the extremity of the Eastern continent; let it be the collection of northern mountaineers, or the dwellers in southern ralleys; let it be in the plain village meeting-house, or in the magnificent cathedrals of the old cities; let it be the crowded congregation of the metropolis, or the 'two or three' that meet in faith in upper chambers, or in logbots, or under palm-trees ; let it be groups in dark and by-way alleys, companies of rescued vagrants, victims of persecution in caves of the rocks and hiding-places of the hills; let it be regenerate bands gathered to pray in any of the islands of the ocean, or thankful circles of believers confessing their dependence

* "So that we may rather experience the power of these mysteries of the Trinity in the heart than speak about them in lofty words." TWESTEN, ^ " Quod semper, quod ubique, quod ab omnibus."

and beseeching pardon on ship's decks in the midst of the ocean. So we pass over the outstretched countries of both hemispheres:-it is well-nigh certain so certain that the rare and scattered exceptions drop out of the broad and general conclusion,—that the lowly petitions, the fervent supplications, the hearty confessions, the eager thanksgivings, or the grand peals of choral adoration, which our ears shall hear will end in the uplifting ascription to the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, the one ever-living and almighty God of all the earth. This is the voice of the unhesitating praise that embraces and hallows the globe. Or we stand still, and look backward, to see what teaching it has been that has achieved all the great results that we glory in, as constituting our Christian civilization; and we find that in simple, historical fact, this very doc. trine appears in immediate and significant connection with nearly all. It is this or at least that system of which this is a characteristic and inseparable element, which has reverently reared the majestic and humbler temples, has piled up the vast cruciform structures by the hands of generations which crumbled one after another as the slow toil proceeded, has written the ancient creeds and modern confessions, has prayed the earlier and later litanies, has sung the glorias and misereres of exultant or penitent millions, has lifted the sweet hymns of East and West, has organized missions and sent forth their messengers, has called councils and subdued nations to the cross, has conserved the order and reformed the abuses of imperfect administrations, and has presided over the learning, the philosophy, and the poetry in the literature of the Christian centuries. Throughout all these diversities of sacred operation, this old and vital truth, reaffirmed, hardly questioned, if omitted soon resumed again, kept clear and confident, bas wrought, has builded, has preserved. And then, if we enter into the private experiences, the griefs, and strifes, and sorrows of the unnumbered multitudes that have been born in pain, and died in the midst of tears, it is this truth which has kept its vigils by the weary processions of sufferers, and consoled them. All this is the undeniable report of facts. That there have been some, in different places, limited communities, or scattered individuals, avowing belief in tbe religion, and honorable in character, who have rejected the doctrine, is evident. Yet it keeps its place, -never more firmly established, or widely welcomed, with its related and attendant truths, than to-day. Grateful for a support so comforting, and a sympathy so large, its advocates can afford to leave all impatience and intolerance to less privileged men."*

pp. 357–361.

"* Hardly anything respecting the history of the Trinity is more remarkable than the substantial agreement amidst the large variety of forms and shades under which the doctrine has been theologically presented. In the face of the libraries of close coutroversy, and the number of schools,--all of them signs of the intense vitality and power hidden in the inmost spiritual economy of the article,-the strong thinkers upon it are, after all, essentially and persistently at one: the early and medieval Fathers, the Continental and English reformers, the Anglican scholars, the Puritan and American divines,-Athanasius and Tholuck, Fenelon and Knox, Augustine and Anselm, Calvin and Taylor, Luther and Bossuet, Bull and Baxter, Horsley and Howe, Pearson, Newinan, Pascal, Cudworth, Wolf, Butler, Tauler and Hopkins, Waterland and Edwards, Sherlock and Dwight, Stuart, Neander. Nice, Trent, Augsburg, Westminster, Princeton, Andover, New Haven, with their symbols, notwithstanding their differences, are Trinitarian."

The sermon consists of two parts; first, a discriminating and vindicatory statement of the doctrine, as held by the author, and we are happy to believe that he will be accepted as a careful and competent assertor of the universally received doctrine; and secondly, a defense of the doctrine, in its practical relations, as involving "life, salvation and comfort for man." With both parts of the discourse we are highly pleased ; and, we think, he places the truth upon its proper foundations, when he makes the practical uses of the Trinity the argument to commend it to human acceptance, and relies upon a clear statement of the Scriptural teaching to avoid or to meet objections.

The Trinity is purely a truth of Divine Revelation; and must stand or fall with Revelation itself. Coming to us from above the sphere of reason, it is not subject to its jurisdiction; -neither discovered nor discoverable by reason, it cannot be assailed by it nor abolished. Revealed everywhere in practical relations, made use of as the working power of human redemption, its proper test is its use, it appeals to experience, and it will continue to maintain its hold, as it ever has done, by being vitally connected with the apprehension of God, and the method of restoration to Him. Prove to a man sensible of his sin and the need of redemption, that for him life, salvation, and comfort are involved in the Divine Trinity, and he will infallibly receive the doctrine. It never was rejected simply because the Scriptures did not fairly teach it; but because the doctrines of grace, so called, had been first rejected, for the sake of which the Trinity was discarded, and without which it stood alone as a barren speculation.

tion. And this history, as well as the very nature of the doctrine, teaches the method in which the truth is to be re-affirmed and brought back into the confidence of those who have discarded it. Its vital connections with practical religion must be shown. But as preliminary to this, a statement must be made, which shall take up all the facts of Divine Revelation, and eliminate the conjectures intruded by man; and to this statement are subsidiary the best lights of modern exegesis, and not less the dialectical skill by which the Church for ages has been exercised, and

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