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The present work is a revision and enlargement of my “Systematic Theology,” first published in 1836. Of the original work there have been printed seven editions, each edition embodying successive corrections and supposed improvements. During the twenty years which have intervened since its first publication I have accumulated much new material, Which I now offer to the reader. My philosophical and critical point of view meantime has also somewhat changed. While I still hold to the old doctrines, I interpret them differently and expound them more clearly, because I seem to myself to have reached a fundamental truth which throws new light upon them all. This truth I have tried to set forth in my book entitled “Christ in Creation” and to that book I refer the reader for further information.

That Christ is the one and only Revealer of God, in nature, in humanity, in history, in science, in Scripture, is in my judgment the key to theology. This view implies a monistic and idealistic conception of the world, together with an evolutionary idea as to its origin and progress. But it is the very antidote to pantheism, in that it recognizes evolution as only the method of the transcendent and personal Christ, who fills all in all, and who makes the universe teleological and moral from its center to its circumference and from its beginning until now.

Neither evolution nor the higher criticism has any terrors to one who regards them as parts of Christ’s creating and educating process. The Christ in whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom

and knowledge himself furnishes all the needed safeguards and limitations. It is only because Christ has been forgotten that nature and law have been personified, that history has been regarded as unpurposed development, that Judaism has been referred to a merely human origin, that Paul has been thought to have switched the church off from its proper track even before it had gotten fairly started on its course, that superstition and illusion have come to seem the only foundation for the sacrifices of the martyrs and the triumphs of modern missions. I believe in no such irrational and atheistic evolution as this. I believe rather in him in whom all things consist, who is with his people even to the end of the world, and who has promised to lead them into all the truth.


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The Eye Sees Only That Which It Brings With It The Power Of Seeing.” — Cicero .

“Open Thou Mine Eyes, That I May Behold Wondrous Things Out Of Thy Law.” — <19B918>Psalm 119:18.

“For With Thee Is The Fountain Of Life: In Thy Light Shall We See Light.” — <193609>Psalm 36:9.

“For We Know In Part, And We Prophesy In Part; But When That Which Is Perfect Is Come, That Which Is In Part Shall Be Done Away.”

<461309>1 Corinthians 13:9, 10


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Philosophy and science are good servants of Christ, but they are poor guides when they rule out the Son of God. As I reach my seventieth year and write these words on my birthday, I am thankful for that personal experience of union with Christ which has enabled me to see in science and philosophy the teaching of my Lord. But this same personal experience has made me even more alive to Christ’s teaching in Scripture, has made me recognize in Paul and John a truth profounder than that disclosed by any secular writers, truth with regard to sin and atonement for sin, that satisfies the deepest wants of my nature and that is self-evidencing and divine.


I am distressed by some common theological tendencies of our time, because I believe them to be false to both science and religion. How men who have ever felt themselves to be lost sinners and who have once received pardon from their crucified Lord and Savior can thereafter seek to pare down his attributes, deny his deity and atonement, tear from his brow the crown of miracle and sovereignty, relegate him to the place of a merely moral teacher who influences us only as does Socrates by words spoken across a stretch of ages, passes my comprehension. here is my test of orthodoxy: Do we pray to Jesus? Do we call upon the name of Christ, as did Stephen and all the early church? Is he our living Lord, omnipresent omniscient omnipotent? Is he divine only in the sense in which we are divine, or is he the only-begotten Son, God manifest in the flesh, in whom is all the fullness of the Godhead bodily? What think ye of the Christ? is still the critical question, and none are entitled to the name of Christian who, in the face of the evidence he has furnished us, cannot answer the question aright.


Under the influence of Ritschl and his Kantian relativism, many of our teachers and preachers have swung off into a practical denial of Christ’s deity and of his atonement. We seem upon the verge of a second Unitarian defection, that will break up churches and compel secessions, in a worse manner than did that of Channing and Ware a century ago. American Christianity recovered from that disaster only by vigorously asserting the authority of Christ and the inspiration of the Scriptures. We need a new vision of the Savior like that which Paul saw on the way to Damascus and John saw on the isle of Patmos, to convince us that Jesus is lifted above space and time, that his existence antedated creation, that he conducted the march of Hebrew history, that he was born of a virgin, suffered on the cross, rose from the dead, and now lives forevermore, the Lord of the universe, the only God with whom we have to do, our Savior here and our Judge hereafter.


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Without a revival of this faith our churches will become secularized, mission enterprise will die out, and the candlestick will be removed out of its place as it was with the seven churches of Asia, and as it has been with the apostate churches of New England.


I print this revised and enlarged edition of my “Systematic theology,” in the hope that its publication may do something to stem this fast advancing tide, and to confirm the faith of God’s elect. I make no doubt that the vast majority of Christians still hold the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints, and that they will sooner or later separate themselves from those who deny the Lord who bought them. When the enemy comes in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord will raise up a standard against him. I would do my part in raising up such a standard. I would lead others to avow anew, as I do now, in spite of the supercilious assumptions of modern infidelity, my firm belief, only confirmed by the experience and reflection of a half century, in the old doctrines of holiness as the fundamental attribute of God, of an original transgression and sin of the whole human race, in a divine preparation in Hebrew history for man’s redemption, in the deity, pre-existence, virgin birth, vicarious atonement and bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ our Lord, and in his future coming to judge the quick and the dead. I believe that these are truths of science as well as truths of revelation; that the supernatural will yet be seen to be most truly natural; and that not the open-minded theologian but the narrow-minded scientist will be obliged to hide his head at Christ’s coming.


The present volume, in its treatment of Ethical Monism, inspiration, the Attributes of God, amid the Trinity, contains an antidote to most of the false doctrine which now threatens the safety of the church. I desire especially to call attention to the section on Perfection, and the Attributes therein involved, because I believe that the recent merging of holiness in Love, and the practical denial that Righteousness is fundamental in God’s nature, are responsible for the utilitarian views of law and the superficial views of sin which now prevail in some systems of theology. There can be no proper doctrine of the atonement and no proper doctrine of retribution, so long as holiness is refused its preeminence. Love must have a norm or standard, and this norm or standard can be found only in Holiness. The old conviction of sin and the sense of guilt that drove the convicted sinner to the cross are inseparable from a firm belief in the self-affirming attribute of God as logically prior to and as conditioning the self-communicating attribute. The theology of our day needs a new view of the Righteous One.


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Such a view will make it plain that God must be reconciled before man can be saved, and that the human conscience can be pacified only upon condition that propitiation is made to the divine Righteousness. In this volume I propound what I regard as the true Doctrine of God, because upon it will be based all that follows in the volumes on the Doctrine of Man, and the Doctrine of Salvation.

The universal presence of Christ, the Light that lighteth every man, in heathen as well as in Christian lands, to direct or overrule all movements of the human mind, gives me confidence that the recent attacks upon the Christian faith will fail of their purpose. It becomes evident at last that not only the outworks are assaulted, but the very citadel itself. We are asked to give up all belief in special revelation. Jesus Christ, it is said, has come in the flesh precisely as each one of us has come, and he was before Abraham only in the same sense that we were. Christian experience knows how to characterize such doctrine so soon as it is clearly stated. And the new theology will be of use in enabling even ordinary believers to recognize soul- destroying heresy even under the mask of professed orthodoxy.

I make no apology for the homiletical element in my book. To be either true or useful, theology must be a passion. Pectus est quod theologum facit, and no disdainful cries of “Pectoral Theology” shall prevent me from maintaining that the eyes of the heart must be enlightened in order to perceive the truth of God, and that to know the truth it is needful to do the truth. Theology is a science which can be successfully cultivated only in connection with its practical application. I would therefore,

in every discussion of its principles, point out its relations to Christian experience, and its power to awaken Christian emotions amid lead to Christian decisions, Abstract theology is not really scientific. Only that theology is scientific which brings the student to the feet of Christ I would hasten the day when in the name of Jesus every knee shall bow. I believe that if any man serve Christ. him the Father will honor, and that he serve Christ means to honor him as I honor the Father. I would not pride myself that I believe so little, but rather that I believe so much. Faith is God’s measure of a man. Why should I doubt that God spoke to the fathers through the prophets? Why should I think it incredible that God should raise the dead? The things that are impossible with men are possible with God. When the Son of man comes, shall he find faith on the earth? Let him at least find faith in us who profess to be his followers. In the conviction that the present darkness is but temporary and that it will be banished by a glorious sun rising, I give

this new edition of my “Theology” to the public with the prayer that whatever of good seed is in it may bring forth fruit, and that whatever plant the heavenly Father has not planted may be rooted up.



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    Theology is the science of God and of the relations between God and the universe.

    Though the word “theology” is sometimes employed in dogmatic writings to designate that single department of the Science which treats of the divine nature and attributes, prevailing usage, since Abelard (AD 1079-

    1142) entitled his general treatise “Theologia Christiana,” has included under that term the whole range of Christian doctrine. Theology, therefore, gives account, not only of God, but also of those relations between God and the Universe in view of which we speak of Creation, Providence and redemption.

    The Fathers call John the Evangelist “the theologian,” because he most fully treats of the internal relations of the persons of the Trinity.

    Gregory Nazianzen (328) received this designation because be defended the deity of Christ against the Arians. For a modern instance of this use of the term “theology” in the narrow sense, see the title of Dr. Hodges first volume: “Systematic Theology, Vol. I: Theology.” But theology is not simply “the science of God,” nor even “the science of God and man.” It also gives account of the relations between God and the universe.

    If the universe were God, theology would be the only science. Since the universe is but a manifestation of God and is distinct from God, there are

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    sciences of nature and of mind. Theology is “the science of the sciences,” not in the sense of including all these sciences, but in the sense of using their results and of slowing their underlying ground; (see Wardlaw Theology, 1:1, 2). Physical science is not a part of theology. As a mere physicist, Humboldt did not need to mention the name of God in his “Cosmos” (but see Cosmos, 2:413, where Humboldt says: “Psalm 104 presents an image of the whole Cosmos”). Bishop of Carlisle: “Science is atheous, and therefore cannot be atheistic.” Only when we consider the relations or finite things to God, does the study of them furnish material for theology. Anthropology is a part of theology, because man’s nature is the work of God and because God’s dealings with man throws light upon the character of God, God is known through his works and his activities. Theology therefore gives account of these works and activities so far as they come within our knowledge. All other sciences require theology for their complete explanation. Proudbon : “If you go very deeply into politics, you are sure to get into theology.” On the definition of theology, see Luthardt, Compendium der Dogmatik, 1; 2; Blant, Dict. Doct. and Hist. Theol., art: Theology; H. B. Smith, Introd., to Christ. Theol., 44: Aristotle, Metaph., 10, 7, 4; 11, 6, 4; and Lactantius, De Ira Dei, 11.

  2. AIM.

    The aim of theology is the ascertainment of the facts respecting God and the relations between God and the universe, and the exhibition of these facts in their rational unity, as connected parts of a formulated and organic system of truth.

    In defining theology as a science, we indicate its aim. Science does not create; it discovers. Theology answers to this description of a science. It discovers facts and relations, but it does not create them.

    Fisher, Nature and Method of Revelation, 141 — “Schiller, referring to the ardor of Columbus’ faith, says that, if the great discoverer had not found a continent, he would have created one. But faith is not creative. Had Columbus not found the land — had there been no real object answering to his belief — his faith would have been a mere fancy.” Because theology deals with objective facts, we refuse to define it as “the science of religion”; versus Am. Theol. Rev., 1850:101-120, and Thornwell, Theology, 1:139, Both the facts and the relations with which theology has to deal have an existence independent of the subjective mental processes of the theologian.

    Science is not only the observing, recording, verifying, and formulating of objective facts; it is also the recognition and explication of the relations

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    between these facts, and the synthesis of both the facts and the rational principles which unite them in a comprehensive, rightly proportioned, and organic system. Scattered bricks and timbers are not a house; severed arms, legs, heads and trunks from a dissecting room are not living men; and facts alone do not constitute science. Science facts + relations; Whewell, Hist. Inductive Sciences, I, Introduction, 43 — ‘There may be facts without science, as in the knowledge of the common quarryman; there may be thought without science, as in the early Greek philosophy.”

    A. MacDonald: “The a priori method is related to the a posteriori as the sails to the ballast of the boat: the more philosophy the better, provided there are a sufficient number of facts; otherwise, there is danger of upsetting the craft.”

    President Woodrow Wilson: “‘Give us the facts” is the sharp injunction of our age to its historians...But facts of themselves does not constitute the truth. The truth is abstract, not concrete. It is the just idea, the right revelation, of what things mean. It is evoked only by such arrangements and orderings of facts as suggest meanings.” Dove, Logic of the Christian Faith, 14 — “The pursuit of science is the pursuit of relations.” Everett, Science of Thought, 3 — “Logy” (e. g., in “theology”), from lo>gov = word + reason, expression ± thought, fact + idea; cf. <430101>John 1:1 — “In the beginning was the Word”.

    As theology deals with objective facts and their relations, so its arrangement of these facts is not optional, but is determined by the nature of the material with which it deals. A true theology thinks over again God’s thoughts and brings them into God’s order, as the builders of Solomon’s temple took the stones already hewn, and put them into the places for which the architect had designed them; Reginald Heber: “No hammer fell, no ponderous axes rung; Like some tall palm, the mystic fabric sprung,” Scientific men have no fear that the data of physics will narrow or cramp their intellects; no more should they fear the objective facts which are the data of theology. We cannot make theology, any more than we can make a law of physical nature. As the natural philosopher is “Naturæ minister et interpres,” so the theologian is the servant and interpreter of the objective truth of God. On the Idea of Theology as a System, see H. B. Smith, Faith and Philosophy, 125-166.


    — The possibility of theology has a threefold ground:

    1. In the existence of a God who has relations to the universe;

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    2. In the capacity of the human mind for knowing God and certain of these relations; and

    3. In the provision of means by which God is brought into actual contact with the mind, or in other words, in the provision of a revelation.

    Any particular science is possible only when three conditions combine, namely, the actual existence of the object with which the science deals, the subjective capacity of the human mind to know that object, and the provision of definite means by which the object is brought into contact with the mind. We may illustrate the conditions of theology from selenology — the science, not of “lunar politics,” which John Stuart Mill thought so vain a pursuit, but of lunar physics. Selenology has three conditions: 1. the objective existence of the moon; 2. the subjective capacity of the human mind to know the moon; and 3. the provision of some means (e. g.. the eye and the telescope) by which the gulf between man and the moon is bridged over, and by which the mind can come into actual cognizance of the facts with regard to the moon.

    1. In the existence of a God who has relations to the universe — It has been objected, indeed, that since God and these relations are objects apprehended only by faith, they are not proper objects of knowledge or subjects for science. We reply:

    1. Faith is knowledge, and a higher sort of knowledge — Physical science also rests upon faith — faith in our own existence, in the existence of a world objective and external to us, and in the existence of other persons than ourselves; faith in our primitive convictions, such as space, time, cause, substance,

      design, right; faith in the trustworthiness of our faculties and in the testimony of our fellow men. But physical science is not thereby invalidated, because this faith, though unlike sense — perception or logical demonstration, is yet a cognitive act of the reason, and may be defined as certitude with respect to matters in which verification is unattainable.

      The objection to theology thus mentioned and answered is expressed in the words of Sir William Hamilton, Metaphysics, 44, 531 — “Faith — belief — is the organ by which we apprehend what is beyond our knowledge.” But science is knowledge, and what is beyond our knowledge cannot be matter for science. Pres. E. C. Robinson says well, that knowledge and faith cannot be severed from one another, like bulkheads in a ship, the first of which may be crushed in, while the second still keeps the vessel afloat. The mind is one, — “it cannot be cut in two with a hatchet.” Faith

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      is not antithetical to knowledge — it is rather a larger and more fundamental sort of knowledge. It is never opposed to reason, but only to sight. Tennyson was wrong when he wrote: “We have but faith: we cannot know; For knowledge is of things we see” (In Memoriam, Introduction). This would make sensuous phenomena the only objects of knowledge. Faith in supersensible realities, on the contrary, is the highest exercise of reason.

      Sir William Hamilton consistently declares that the highest achievement of science is the erection of an altar “To the Unknown God.” This, however, is not the representation of Scripture. ( cf .

      <431703>John 17:3 — “This is life eternal, that they should know the, the only true God”: and <240924> Jeremiah 9:24 — “let him that glorieth glory in that he hath understanding and knoweth me” For criticism of Hamilton, see H. B. Smith, Faith and Philosophy, 207-336. Fichte: “We arc born in faith.” Even Goethe called himself a believer in the five senses. Balfour, Defense of Philosophic Doubt, 277-295, shows that intuitive beliefs in space, time, cause, substance, right, are presupposed in the acquisition of all other knowledge. Dove, Logic of the Christian Faith, 14 — “If theology is to be overthrown because it starts from some primary terms and propositions, then all other sciences are overthrown with it.” Mozley, Miracles, defines faith as “unverified reason.” See A. H. Strong, Philosophy and Religion, 1930.

    2. Faith is knowledge conditioned by holy affection, — The faith, which apprehends God’s being and working, is not opinion or imagination. It is certitude with regard to spiritual realities, upon the testimony of our rational nature and upon the testimony of God. Its only peculiarity as a cognitive act of the reason is that it is conditioned by holy affection. As the science of aesthetics is a product of reason as including a power of

      recognizing beauty practically inseparable from a love for beauty, and as the science of ethics is a product of reason as including a power of recognizing the morally right practically inseparable from a love for the morally right, so the science of theology is a product of reason, but of reason as including a power of recognizing God, which is practically inseparable from a love for God.

      We here use the term “reason” to signify the mind’s whole power of knowing. Reason in this sense includes states of the sensibility, so far as they are indispensable to knowledge. We cannot know an orange by the eye alone; to the understanding of it, taste is as necessary as sight. The mathematics of sound cannot give us an understanding of music; we need

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      also a musical ear. Logic alone cannot demonstrate the beauty of a sunset, or of a noble character; love for the beautiful and the right precedes knowledge of the beautiful and the right. Ullman draws attention to the derivation of sapientia , wisdom, from sap’re , to taste. So we cannot know God by intellect alone: the heart must go with the intellect to make knowledge of divine timings possible. “Human things,” said Pascal, “need only to be known, in order to he loved; but divine things must first be loved, in order to be known.” “This [religious] faith of the intellect,” said Kant, “is founded on the assumption of moral tempers.” If one were utterly indifferent to moral laws, the philosopher continues, even then religious truths “would be supported by strong arguments from analogy, but not by such as an obstinate, skeptical heart might not overcome.”

      Faith, then, is the highest knowledge, because it is the act of the integral soul, the insight, not of one eye alone, but of the two eyes of the mind, intellect and love to God. With one eye we can see an object as flat, but, if we wish to see around it and get the stereoptic effect, we must use both eyes. It is not the theologian, not the undevout astronomer, whose science is one-eyed and therefore incomplete. The errors of the rationalist are errors of defective vision. Intellect has been divorced from heart, that is, from a right disposition, right affections, and right purpose in life. Intellect says: “I cannot know God”: and intellect is right. What intellect says, the Scripture also says:

      <460214> 1 Corinthians 2:14 — “the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him; and he cannot know them, because they are spiritually judged”; 1:21 — “in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom know not God..”

      The Scripture on the other hand declares that “by faith we know”

      ( <581103>Hebrews 11:3). By “heart” the Scripture means simply the

      governing disposition, or the sensibility + the will; and it intimates that the heart is an organ of knowledge: <023525>Exodus 35:25 — the women that were wise hearted”; <193408>Psalm 34:8. — — “O taste and see that Jehovah is good” — a right taste precedes correct sight:

      <242407>Jeremiah 24:7 — “I will give them a heart to know me”;

      <400508>Matthew 5:8 — Blessed are the pure in heart; for they shall see God”; <422425>Luke 24:25 — “slow of heart to believe”;

      <430717>John 7:17 — “If any man willeth to do his will, he shall know of the teaching, whether it is of God, or whether I speak from myself”; <490119>Ephesians 1:19 — “having the eyes of your heart enlightened, that ye may know’’ <620407>1 John 4:7, 8 — “Every one that loveth is begotten of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God.” See Frank, Christian Certainty, 303-324; Clarke, Christ.

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      Theol.,362; Illingworth, Div. and Hum. Personality, 114-137; R. T. Smith, Man’s Knowledge of Man and of God, 6; Fisher, Nat. and Method of Rev., 6; William James, The Will to Believe, 1-31; Geo. T.. Ladd, on Lotze’s view that love is essential to the knowledge of God, in New World, Sept. 1895:401-406; Gunsaulus, Transfig. of Christ, 14, 15.

    3. Faith, therefore, can furnish, and only faith can furnish, fit and sufficient material for a scientific theology. — As an operation of man’s higher rational nature, though distinct from ocular vision or from reasoning, faith is not only a kind, but the highest kind, of knowing. It gives us understanding of realities which to sense alone are inaccessible, namely, God’s existence, and some at least of the relations between God and his creation.

    Philippi, Glaubenslehre, I:50, follows Gerhard in making faith the joint act of intellect and will. Hopkins, Outline Study of Man, 77, 78, speaks not only of “the aesthetic reason” but of “the moral reason.” Murphy, Scientific Bases of Faith, 91:109, 145, 191 — “Faith is the certitude concerning matter in which verification is unattainable.” Emerson, Essays, 2:96 — “Belief consists in accepting the affirmations of the soul — unbelief in rejecting them.” Morell, Philos. of Religion, 38, 52, 53, quotes Coleridge: “Faith consists in the synthesis of the reason and of the individual will, ...and by virtue of the former (that is, reason), faith must be a light, a form of knowing, a beholding of truth.” Faith, then, is not to be pictured as a blind girl clinging to a cross — faith is not blind — “Else the cross may just as well be a crucifix or an image of Gaudama.” “Blind unbelief’,” not blind faith, “is sure to err, And scan his works in vain.” As in conscience we recognize an invisible authority, amid know the truth just in proportion to our willingness to “do the truth,” so in religion only holiness can understand holiness, and only hove

    can understand love. ( cf .

    <430321> John 3:21 — “he that doeth the truth cometh to the light”). If a right state of heart be indispensable to faith and so to the

    knowledge of God. can there be any “theologia irregenitorum,” or theology of the unregenerate? Yes, we answer; just as the blind man can leave a science of optics. The testimony of others gives it claims upon him; the dim light penetrating the obscuring membrane corroborates this testimony. The unregenerate man can know God as power and justice, and came fear him. But this is not knowledge of God’s inmost character; it furnishes some material for a defective and ill — proportioned theology; but it does not furnish fit or sufficient material for a correct theology. As, in order to make his science of optics satisfactory and complete, the blind man must

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    have the cataract removed from his eyes by some competent oculist, so, in order to any complete or satisfactory theology, the veil must be taken away from the heart by God himself ( cf. <470315>2 Corinthians 3:15, 16 — a veil lieth upon their heart But whensoever it [margin ‘a man’] shall turn to the Lord, the veil is taken away”).

    Our doctrine that faith is knowledge and the highest knowledge is to be distinguished from that of Ritschl, whose theology is an appeal to the heart to the exclusion of the head — to fiducia without notitia . But fiducia includes notitia else it is blinding, irrational and unscientific. Robert Browning, in like manner, fell into a deep speculative error, when, in order to substantiate his optimistic faith, he stigmatized human knowledge as merely apparent. The appeal of both Ritschl and Browning from the head to the heart should rather be an appeal from the narrower knowledge of the mere intellect to the larger knowledge conditioned upon right affection. See A. H. Strong, The: Great Poets aced their Theology.

    441. Ore Ritschl’s postulates, see Stearns, Evidence of Christian Experience, 274-280, and Pfleiderer, Die Ritschl’sche Theologie. On the relation of love and will to knowledge, see Kaftan, in Am. Jour. Theology, 1900:717; Hovey, Manual Christ. Theol., 9; Foundations of our Faith, 12, 13; Shedd, Hist. Doct., 1:154-164; Presb. Quar., Oct. 1871, Oct. 1872, Oct. 1873; Calderwood, Philos. Infinite, 99, 117; Van Oosterzee, Dogmatics, 2-8; New Englander, July, 1873:481; Princeton Rev., 1864:122; Christlieb, Mod. Doubt, 124, 125: Grau, Glaube als hochste Vernunft, in Beweis des Glaubens, 1865:110 Dorner, Gesch. prot. Theol., 228; Newman, Univ. Sermons, 206 ; Hinton, Art of Thinking, Introduction by Hodgson, 5.

    2. In the capacity of the human m/nd for knowing God and certain of these relations — But it has urged that such knowledge is impossible for the following reasons:

    1. Because we can know only phenomena. We reply:

      1. We know mental as well as physical phenomena.

      2. In knowing phenomena, whether mental or physical, we know substance as underlying the phenomena, as manifested thorough them, and as constituting their ground of unity.

      3. Our minds bring to the observation of phenomena not only this knowledge of substance, but also knowledge of time, space, cause, and right, realities which are in no sense phenomenal. Since these objects of

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        knowledge are not phenomenal, the fact that God is not phenomenal cannot prevent us from knowing him.

        What substance is, we need not here determine. Whether we are realists or idealists, we are compelled to grant that there cannot be phenomena without noumena, cannot be appearances without something that appears, cannot be qualities without something that is qualified. This something which underlies or stands under appearance or quality we call substance. We are Lotzeans rather than Kantians, in our philosophy. To say that we know, not the self, but only its manifestations in thought, is to confound self with its thinking and to teach psychology without a soul. To say that we know no external world, but only its manifestations in sensations, is to ignore the principle that binds these sensations together’, for without a somewhat in which qualities inhere they can have no ground of unity. In like manner, to say that we know nothing of God but his manifestations is to confound God with the world and practically to deny that there is a God.

        Stahlin, in his work on Kant, Lotze and Ritschl, 186-191, 218, 219, says well that “limitation of knowledge to phenomena involves the elimination from theology of all claim to know the subjects of the Christian faith as they are in themselves..” This criticism justly classes Ritschl with Kant, rather than with Lotze who maintains that knowing phenomena we know also the noumena manifested in them. While Ritschl professes to follow Lotze, the whole drift of his theology is in the direction of the Kantian identification of the world with our sensations, mind with our thoughts, and God with such activities of his as we can perceive. A divine nature apart from its activities, a pre — existent Christ, an immanent Trinity, is practically denied. Assertions that God is self — conscious love and fatherhood become judgments of merely subjective value. On Ritschl, see the

        works of Orr,. of Garvie, and of Swing; also Minton, in Pres. and Ref. Rev., Jan. 1902:162 — l69, and C. W. Hodge, ibid ., Apl. 1902:321-326; Flint. Agnosticism, 590-597; Everett, Essays Theol. and Llt., 92-99..

        We grant that we can know God only so far as his activities reveal him, and so far our minds and hearts are receptive of his revelation. The appropriate faculties must be exercised — not the mathematical, the logical, or the prudential, but the ethical and the religious. It is the merit of Ritschl that he recognizes the practical in distinction from the speculative reason; his error is in not recognizing that, when we do thus use the proper powers of knowing, we gain not merely subjective but also objective truth, and come in contact not simply with God’s activities but also with God himself. Normal religious judgements, though dependent

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        upon subjective conditions, are not simply “judgments of worth” or “value — judgments,” — they give us the knowledge of “things in themselves..” Edward Caird says of his brother John Caird (Fund. Ideas of Christianity, Introduction cxxi) — “The conviction that God can be known and is known, and that, in the deepest sense, all our knowledge is knowledge of him, was the corner — stone of his theology.”

        Ritschl’s phenomenalism is allied to the positivism of Comte, who regarded all so — called knowledge of other than phenomenal objects as purely negative. The phrase “Positive Philosophy” implies indeed that all knowledge of mind is negative; see Comte, Pos. Philosophy, Martineau’s translation, 26, 28, 33 — “In order to observe, your intellect must pause from activity — yet it is this very activity you want to observe. If you cannot effect the cause, you cannot observe; if you do effect it, there is nothing to observe.” ‘This view is refuted by the two facts:

        1. consciousness, mind and

        2. memory for consciousness is the knowing of the self side by side with the knowing of its thoughts, and memory is the knowing of the self side by side with the knowing of its past; see Martineau, Essays Philos. and Theol., 1:24- 40, 207-212. By phenomena we mean “facts, in distinction from their ground, principle, or law’’; “neither phenomena nor qualities, as such, are perceived, but objects. percepts, or beings; and it is by an after — thought or reflex process that these are connected as qualities and are referred to as

      substances”; see Porter, Human Intellect, 51, 238, 520 , 619-637, 640-


      Phenomena may be internal, e.g., thoughts; in this case the

      noumenom is the mind, of which these thoughts are the, manifestations. Or, phenomena may be external, e. g., color, hardness, shape, and size; in this case the noumenon is matter, of which these qualities are the manifestations. But qualities, whether mental or material, imply the existence of a substance to which they belong: they can no more be conceived of as existing apart from substance, than the upper side of a plank can be conceived of as existing without an under side; see Bowne, Review of Herbert Spencer, 47, 207-217; Martineau, Types of Ethical Theory, 1; 455, 456 — “Comte’s assumption that mind cannot know itself or its states is exactly balanced by Kant’s assumption that mind cannot know anything outside of itself... It is precisely because all knowledge is of relations that it is not and cannot be of phenomena alone. The absolute cannot per se be known, because in being known it would ipso facto enter into relations and be absolute no more. But neither can the phenomenal per se be known, i.e., be known as phenomenal without simultaneous cognition of what is non

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      • phenomenal.” McCosh, Intuitions, 138-154, states the characteristics of substance as (1) being, (2) power, and (3) permanence. Diman, Theistic Argument, 337, 363 — “The theory that disproves God, disproves an external world and the existence of the soul.” We know something beyond phenomena, viz.: law, cause, force — or we can have no science; see Tulloch, on Comte, in Modern Theories, 53-73; see also Bibliotheca Sacra, 1874:211; Alden, Philosophy, 44; Hopkins, Outline Study of Man, 87: Fleming, Vocab. of Philosophy, art.: Phenomena; New Englander. July, 1875:537-539

    2. Because we can know only that which bears analogy to our own nature or experience. We reply:

      1. It is not essential to knowledge that there be similarity of nature between the knower and the known. We know by difference as well as by likeness.

      2. Our past experience, though greatly facilitating new acquisitions, is not the measure of our possible knowledge. Else the first act of knowledge would be inexplicable, and all revelation of higher characters to lower would be precluded, as well as all progress to knowledge, which surpasses our present attainments.

      3. Even if knowledge depended upon similarity of nature and experience, we might still know God, since we are made in God’s image, and there are important analogies between the divine nature and our own.

      1. The dictum of Empedocles, “Similia similibus percipiuntur,” must

        be supplemented by a second dictum, “Similia dissemilibus percipiuntur.” All things are alike, in being objects. But knowing is distinguishing, and there must be contrast between objects to awaken our attention. God knows sin, though it is the antithesis to his holy being. The ego knows the non — ego. We cannot know even self, without objectifying it, distinguishing it from its thoughts, and regarding it as another.

      2. Versus Herbert Spencer, First Principles, 79-82 — “Knowledge is recognition and classification.” But we reply that a thing must first he perceived in order to be recognized or compared with something else; and this is as true of the first sensation as of the later and more definite forms of knowledge — indeed there is no sensation which does not involve, as its complement, an at least incipient perception; see Sir William Hamilton Metaphysics, 351, 352; Porter, Human Intellect, 206.

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      3. Porter, Human Intellect, 486 — “Induction is possible only upon the assumption that the intellect of man is a reflex of the divine intellect, or that man is made in the image of God.” Note, however, that man is made in God’s image, not God in man’s. The painting is the image of the landscape, not, vice versa, the landscape the image of the painting; for there is much in the landscape that has nothing corresponding to it in the painting. Idolatry perversely makes God in the image of man, and so defies man’s weakness and impurity. Trinity in God may have no exact counterpart in man’s present constitution, though it may disclose to us the goal of man’s future development and the meaning of the increasing differentiation of man’s powers. Gore, Incarnation, 116 — “If anthropomorphism as applied to God is false, yet theomorphism as applied to man is true; man is made in God’s image, and his qualities are, not the measure of the divine, but their counterpart and real expression.” See Murphy, Scientific Bases, 122; McCosh, in Internat. Rev., 1875:105; Bibliotheca Sacra, 1867:624; Martineau, Types of Ethical Theory, 2:4-8, and Study of Religion, 1:94.

    3. Because we know only that of which we can conceive, in the sense of forming an adequate mental image. We reply:

      1. It is true that we know only that of which we can conceive, if by the term “conceive’ we mean near distinguishing in thought the object known from all other objects. But,

      2. the objection confounds conception with that which is merely its occasional accompaniment and help, namely, the picturing of the object by the imagination. In this sense, conceivability is not a final test of truth.

      3. That the formation of a mental image is not essential to

      conception or knowledge, is plain when we remember that, as a matter of fact, we both conceive and know many things of which we cannot form a mental image of any sort that in the least corresponds to the reality; for example, force, cause, law, space, our own minds. So we may know God, though we cannot form an adequate mental image of him.

      The objection here refuted is expressed most clearly in the words of Herbert Spencer, First Principles, 23-36, 98 — “The reality underlying appearances is totally and forever inconceivable by us.” Mansel, Prolegomena Logica. 77, 78 (cf. 26) suggests the source of this error in a wrong view of the nature of the concept: “The first distinguishing feature of a concept, viz.: that it cannot in itself be depicted to sense or Imagination.” Porter, human Intellect, 392 (see also 429, 656) — “The

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      concept is not a mental image — only the percept is. Lotze: “Color in general is not representable by any image; it looks neither green nor red, but has no look whatever.” The generic horse has no particular color, though the individual horse may be black, white, or bay. So Sir William Hamilton speaks of “the unpicturable notions of the intelligence.”

      Martineau, Religion and Materialism.39, 40 — “This doctrine of Nescience stands in exactly the same relation to causal power, whether you construe it as Material Force or as Divine Agency. Neither can be observed ; one or the other must be assumed. If you admit to the category of knowledge only what we learn from observation, particular or generalized, then is Force unknown; if you extend the word to what is imported by the intellect itself into our cognitive acts, to make them such, then is God known.” Matter, ether, energy, protoplasm, organism, lire, — no one of these can be portrayed to time imagination; yet Mr. Spencer deals with them as objects of Science. If these are not inscrutable, why should he regard the Power that gives unity to all things as inscrutable?

      Herbert Spencer is not in fact consistent with himself, for in divers parts of his writings he calls time inscrutable Reality back of phenomena the one, eternal, ubiquitous, infinite, ultimate, absolute Existence, Power and Cause. “It seems,” says Father Dalgairns, “that a great deal is known about the Unknowable.” Chadwick, Unitarianism, 75 — “The beggar phrase ‘Unknowable’ becomes, after Spencer’s repeated designations of it, as rich as Croesus with all saving knowledge.” Matheson: “To know that we know nothing is already to have reached a fact of knowledge.” If Mr. Spencer intended to exclude God from the realm of Knowledge, he should first have excluded him from the realm of Existence; for to grant that he is, is already to grant that we not only may know him, but that we actually to some extent do know him; see D. J. Hill, Genetic

      Philosophy, 22; McCosh, Intuitions, 186-189 (Eng. ed.. 214); Murphy, Scientific Bases, 133; Bowne, Review of Spencer, 30-34; New Englander, July, 1875:54, 543, 544; Oscar Craig, in Presb. Rev., July, 1883:594-602.

    4. Because we can know truly only that which we know in whole and not in part. We reply:

    1. The objection confounds partial knowledge with the knowledge of a part. We know the mind in part, but we do not know a part of the mind.

    2. If the objection were valid, no real knowledge of anything would be possible, since we know no single thing in all its relations. We conclude that, although God is a being not composed of parts, we may yet have a

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    partial knowledge of him, and this knowledge, though not exhaustive, may yet be real, and adequate to the purposes of science.

    1. The objection mentioned in the text is urged by Mansel, Limits of Religious Thought, 97, 98, and is answered by Martineau, Essays, 1;

      291. The mind does not exist in space, and it has no parts: we cannot

      speak of its southwest corner, nor can we divide it into halves. Yet we find the material for mental science in partial knowledge of the mind. So, while we are not “geographers of the divine nature” (Bowne, Review of Spencer,

      72), we may say with Paul, not “now know we a part of God,” but “now I knew God, in part” ( <461312>1 Corinthians13:12). We may know truly what we do not know exhaustively; see Ephesians3:19 — “to know the love of Christ which passeth knowledge.” I do not perfectly understand myself, yet I know myself in part; so I may know God. though I do not perfectly understand him.

    2. The same argument that proves God unknowable proves the universe unknowable also. Since every particle of matter in the universe attracts every other, no one particle can be exhaustively explained without taking account of all the rest. Thomas Carlyle: “It is a mathematical fact that the casting of this pebble from my hand alters the center of gravity of the universe.” Tennyson, Higher Panetheism: “Flower in the crannied wall, I pluck you out of the crannies; hold you here, root and all, in my hand, Little flower; but if I could understand What you are, root and all, and all in all, I should know what God and man is.” Schurman, Agnosticism, 119 — “Partial as it is, this vision of the divine transfigures the life of man on earth.” Pfleiderer, Philos. Religion,, 1:167 — “A faint — hearted agnosticism is worse than the arrogant and titanic Gnosticism against which it protests..”

    B. Because all predicates of God are negative, and therefore furnish no real knowledge. We answer:

    1. Predicates derived from our consciousness, such as spirit, love, and holiness, are positive.

    2. The terms ‘infinite” and ‘ absolute,” moreover, express not merely a negative but a positive idea — the idea, in the former case, of the absence of all limit, the idea that the object thus described goes on and on forever; the idea, in the latter case, of entire self-sufficiency. Since predicates of God, therefore, are not merely negative, the argument mentioned above furnishes no valid reason why we may not know him.

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    Versus Sir William Hamilton, Metaphysics, 530 — “The absolute and the infinite can each only be conceived as a negation of time thinkable; in other words, of the absolute and infinite we have no conception at all.” Hamilton here confounds the infinite, or the absence of all limits, with the indefinite, or the absence of all known limits. Per contra , see Calderwood, Moral Philosophy, 248, and Philosophy of the Infinite, 272 — “Negation of one thing is possible only by affirmation of another.” Porter, Human Intellect, 652 — “If the Sandwich Islanders, for lack of name, had called the ox a not- hog , the use of a negative appellation would not necessarily authorize the inference of a want of definite conceptions or positive knowledge.” So with the infinite or not finite, time unconditioned or not — conditioned, the independent or not dependent, — these names do not imply that we cannot conceive and know it as something positive. Spencer, First Principles, 92 — “Our consciousness of time Absolute, indefinite though it is, is positive, and not negative.”

    Schurman Agnosticism, 100, speaks of “the farce of nescience playing at omniscience in setting the bounds of science.” “The agnostic,” he says, “sets up the invisible picture of a grand ’tre , formless and colorless in itself, absolutely separated from man and from the world — blank within and void without — its very existence indistinguishable from its non- existence, and, bowing down before this idolatrous creation, he pours out his soul in lamentations over time incognizableness of such a mysterious and awful non — entity... The truth is that the agnostic’s abstraction of a Deity is unknown, only because it is unreal.” See McCosh, Intuitions, 194, note; Mivart Lessons from Nature, 363. God is not necessarily infinite in every respect. He is infinite only in every excellence. A plane, which is unlimited in the one respect of length, may be limited in another respect, such as breadth. Our doctrine here is not therefore inconsistent with what immediately follows.

    1. Because to know is to limit or define. Hence the Absolute as unlimited, and the Infinite as undefined, cannot be known. We answer:

      1. God is absolute, not as existing in no relation, but as existing in no necessary relation; and

      2. God is infinite, not as excluding all coexistence of the finite with himself, but as being the ground of the finite, and so unfettered by it.

      3. God is actually limited by the unchangeableness of his own attributes and personal distinctions, as well as by his self- chosen relations to the universe he has created and to humanity in the person of Christ. God is

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      therefore limited and defined in such a sense as to render knowledge of him possible.

      Versus Mansel, Limitations of Religious Thought, 75-84, 93-95; cf. Spinoza: “Omnis determinatio est negatio;” hence to define God is to deny him. But we reply that perfection is inseparable from limitation. Man can be other than he is: not so God, at least internally. But this limitation, inherent in his unchangeable attributes and personal distinctions, is God’s perfection. Externally, all limitations upon God are self-limitations, and so are consistent with his perfection. That God should not be able thus to limit himself in creation and redemption would render all self-sacrifice in him impossible, and so would subject him to the greatest of limitations. We may say therefore that God’s

      1. Perfection involves his limitation to

        1. personality,

        2. trinity,’

        3. righteousness;

      2. Revelation involves his self-limitation in

        1. decree,

        2. creation,

        3. preservation.

        4. government.

        5. education of the world:

      3. Redemption involves his infinite self-limitation in the

      1. person and

      2. work of Jesus Christ: see A. H. Strong, Christ in Creation, 87. — 101, and in Bap. Quar. Rev.. Jan. 1891:521-532.

      Bowne, Philos. of Theism, 135 — The infinite is not the quantitative all; the absolute Is not the unrelated....Both absolute and infinite mean only

      the independent ground of things.” Julius Muller, Doct. Sin, Introduc., 10 — “Religion has to do, not with an Object that must let itself be known because its very existence is contingent upon its being known, but with the Object in relation to whom we are truly subject, dependent upon him, and waiting until he manifest himself.” James Martineau, Study of Religion, 1:346 — “We must not confound the infinite with the total ...The self-abnegation of infinity is but a form of self-assertion, and the only form. in which it can reveal itself....However instantaneous the omniscient

      thought, however sure the almighty power, the execution has to be

      distributed in time, and must have an order of successive steps; on no

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      other terms can the eternal become temporal, and the infinite articulately speak in the finite.”

      Perfect personality excludes, not self-determination, but determination from withou t, determination by another . God’s self- limitations are the self-limitations of love, and therefore the evidences of his perfection. They are signs, not of weakness but of power. God has limited himself to the method of evolution, gradually unfolding himself in nature and in history. The government of sinners by a holy God involves constant self- repression. The education of the race is a long process of divine forbearance; Herder: “The limitations of the pupil are limitations of the teacher also.” in inspiration, God limits himself by the human element through which he works. Above all, in the person and work of Christ, we have infinite self-limitation: Infinity narrows itself down to a point in the incarnation, and holiness endures the agonies of the Cross. God’s promises are also self-limitations. Thus both nature and grace are

      self- imposed restrictions upon God, and these self-limitations are the means by which he reveals himself. See Pfleiderer, Die Religion, 1:189, 195; Porter, Human Intellect, 653; Murphy, Scientific Bases,

      130; Calderwood, Philos. Infinite, 168; McCosh, Intuitions, 186; Hickok, Rational Cosmology, 85; Martineau. Study of Religion, 2: 85, 86, 362; Shedd, Dogmatic Theology, 1:189-191.

    2. Because all knowledge is relative to the knowing agent; that is, what we know, we know, not as it is objectively, but only as it is related to our own senses and faculties. In reply:

    1. We grant that we can know only that which has relation to our faculties. But this is simply to say that we know only that which we come into mental contacts with, that is, we know only what we know. But,

    2. we deny that what we come into mental contact with is known by us as other than it is. So far as it is known at all, it is known as it is. In other words, the laws of our knowing are not merely arbitrary and regulative, but correspond to the nature of things. We conclude that, in theology, we are equally warranted in assuming that the laws of our thought are laws of God’s thought, and that the results of normally conducted thinking with regard to God correspond to the objective reality.

    Versus Sir Wm. Hamilton, Metaph., 96-116, and Herbert Spencer, First Principles, 38-97. This doctrine of relativity is derived from Kant, Critique of Pure Reason, who holds that a priori judgments are simply “regulative.” But we reply that when our primitive beliefs are found to be

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    simply regulative, they will cease to regulate. The forms of thought are also facts of nature. The mind does not, like the glass of a kaleidoscope, itself furnish the forms; it recognizes these as having an existence external to itself. The mind reads its ideas, not into nature, but in nature. Our intuitions are not green goggles, which make all the world seem green; they are the lenses of a microscope, which enable us to see what is objectively real (Royce, Spirit of Mod. Philos, 125). Kant called our understanding “the legislator of nature.” But it is so, only as discoverer of nature’s laws, not as creator of them. Human reason does impose its laws and forms upon the universe; but, in doing this, it interprets the real meaning of the universe.

    [Illegible] Philos . of Knowledge ‘”All judgment implies an objective truth according to which we judge, which constitutes the standard, and with which we have something in common, i.e., our minds are part of an infinite and eternal Mind.” French aphorism: “When you are right, you are more right than you think you are.” God will not put us to permanent intellectual confusion. Kant vainly wrote “No thoroughfare “over the reason in its highest exercise. Martineau, Study of Religion, 1:135, 136 — “Over against Kant’s assumption that the mind cannot know anything outside of itself, we may set Comte’s equally unwarrantable assumption that the mind cannot know itself or its states. We cannot have philosophy without assumptions You dogmatize if you say that the forms correspond with reality; but you equally dogmatize if you say that they do not....79 —

    That our cognitive faculties correspond to things as they are , is much less surprising than that they should correspond to things as they are not .” W.

    T. Harris, in Journ. Spec. Philos., 1:22. exposes Herbert Spencer’s self- contradiction: “All knowledge is, not absolute, but relative; our knowledge of this fact however is, not relative, but absolute.”

    Ritschl, Justification and Reconciliation, 3:16-21, sets out with a correct statement of the nature of knowledge, and gives in his adhesion to the doctrine of Lotze, as distinguished from that of Kant. Ritschl’s statement may be summarized as follows:

    “We deal, not with the abstract God of metaphysics, but with the God self-limited, who is revealed in Christ. We do not know either things or God apart from their phenomena or manifestations, as Plato imagined; we do not know phenomena or manifestations alone without knowing either things or God, as Kant supposed; but we do know both things and God in their phenomena or manifestations, as Lotze taught. We hold to no mystical union with God, back of all experience in religion, as Pietism does; soul is always and only active, and religion is the activity of the

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    human spirit, in which feeling, knowing and willing combine in an intelligible order.”

    But Dr. C. M.. Mead, Ritschl’s Place in the History of Doctrine, has well shown that Ritschl has not followed Lotze. His “value — judgments” are simply an application to theology of the “regulative” principle of Kant. He holds that we can know things not as they are in themselves, but only as they are for us. We reply that what things are worth for us depends on what they are in themselves. Ritschl regards the doctrines of Christ’s pre- existence, divinity and atonement as intrusions of metaphysics. into theology, matters about which we cannot know, and with which we have nothing to do. There is no propitiation or mystical union with Christ; and Christ is our Example, but not our atoning Savior Ritschl does well in recognizing that love in us gives eyes to the mind, and enables us to see the beauty of Christ and his truth. But our judgement is not, as he holds, a merely subjective value judgment — it is a coming in contact with objective fact. On the theory of knowledge held by Kant, Hamilton and Spencer, see Bishop Temple, Bampton Lectures for 1884:13; H. B. Smith, Faith and Philosophy, 297-336; J. S. Mill, Examination,

    1:113- 134; Herbert, Modern Realism Examined; M..B. Anderson, art.: “Hamilton,” in Johnson’s Encyclopedia; McCosh, Intuitions, 139-146, 340, 341, and Christianity and Positivism, 97-123; Maurice, What is Revelation? Alden, Intellectual Philosophy, 48-79, esp. 71- 79; Porter, Hum. Intellect, 523; Murphy, Scientific Bases, 103; Bibliotheca Sacra April, 1868:341; Princeton Rev., 1864:122; Bowne, Review of Herbert Spencer, 76; Bowen, in Princeton Rev., March, 1878:445-448; Mind, April, 1878:257; Carpenter, Mental Physiology, 117; Harris, Philos. Basis of Theism, 109-113; Iverach, in Present Day Tracts, 5: No. .29; Martineau, Study of Religion, 1:79, 120, 121, 135, 136.

    3. In God’s actual revelation of himself and certain of these

    relations. — As we do not in this place attempt a positive proof of God’s existence or of man’s capacity for the knowledge of God, so we do not now attempt to prove that God has brought himself into contact with mans mind by revelation. We shall consider the grounds of this belief hereafter. Our aim at present is simply to show that, granting the fact of revelation, a scientific theology is possible. This has been denied upon the following grounds:

    1. That revelation, as a making known, is necessarily internal and subjective — either a mode of intelligence, or a quickening of man’s cognitive powers — and hence can furnish no objective facts such as constitute the proper material for science.

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      Morell, Philos. Religion, 128-131, 143 — “The Bible cannot in strict accuracy of language be called a revelation, since a revelation always implies an actual process of intelligence in a living mind.” F. W. Newman, Phases of Faith, 152 — “Of our moral and spiritual God we know nothing without — everything within.” Theodore Parker: “Verbal revelation can never communicate a simple idea like that of God, Justice. Love, Religion”; see review of Parker in Bibliotheca Sacra, 18:14-27. James Martineau, Seat of Authority in Religion: “As many minds as there are that know God at first hand, so many revealing acts there have been, and as many as know him at second hand are strangers to revelation”; so, assuming external revelation to be impossible, Martineau subjects all the proofs of such revelation to unfair destructive criticism. Pfleiderer, Philos. Religion, 1:185 — “As all revelation is originally an inner living experience, the springing up of religious truth in the heart, no external event can belong in itself to revelation, no matter whether it be naturally or supernaturally brought about.” Professor George M. Forbes: “Nothing can be revealed to us which we do not grasp with our reason. It follows that, so far as reason acts normally, it is a part of revelation.” Ritchie, Darwin and Hegel, 30 — “The revelation of God is the growth of the idea of God.”

      In reply to this objection, urged mainly by idealists in philosophy,

      1. We grant that revelation, to be effective, must be the means of inducing a new mode of intelligence, or in other words, must be understood. We grant that this understanding of divine things is impossible without a quickening of man’s cognitive powers. We grant, moreover, that revelation, when originally imparted, was often internal and subjective.

        Matheson, Moments on the Mount, 51-53, on <480116>Galatians 1:16

        • “to reveal his Son in me”: “The revelation on the way to Damascus would not have enlightened Paul, had it keen merely a vision to his eye. Nothing can be revealed to us which has not been revealed in us. The eye does not see the beauty of the landscape, nor the ear hears the beauty of music. So flesh and blood do not reveal Christ to us. Without the teaching of the Spirit, the external facts will be only like the letters of a book to a child that cannot read.” We may say with Channing: “I am more sure that my rational nature is from God, than that any book is the expression of his will.”

      2. But we deny that external revelation is therefore useless or impossible. Even if religious ideas sprang wholly from within, an external revelation might stir up the dormant powers of the mind. Religious ideas, however,

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        do not spring wholly from within. External revelation can impart them Man can reveal himself to man by external communications, and, if God has equal power with man, God can reveal himself to man in like manner.

        Rogers, in his Eclipse of Faith, asks pointedly: “If Messrs. Morehl and Newman can teach by a book, cannot God do the same? ‘ Lotze. Microcosmos. 2:660 (book 9, chap. 4), speaks of revelation as “either contained in some divine act of historic occurrence, or continually repeated in men’s hearts.” But in fact there is no alternative here; the strength of the Christian creed is that God’s revelation is both external and internal; see Gore, in Lux Mundi, 338.Rainy, in Critical Review, 1:1- 21, well says that Martineau unwarrantably isolates the witness of God to the individual sent. The inward needs to be combined with the outward, in order to make sure that it is not a vagary of the imagination. We need to distinguish God’s revelations from our own fancies. Hence, before giving the internal, God commonly gives us the external, as a standard by which to try our impressions. We are finite and sinful, and we need authority. The external revelation commends itself as authoritative to the heart, which recognizes its own spiritual needs. External authority evokes the inward witness and gives added clearness to it, but only historical revelation furnishes indubitable proof that God is love, and gives us assurance that our longings after God are not in vain

      3. Hence God’s revelation may be, and, as we shall hereafter see, it is, in great part, an external revelation in works and words. The universe is a revelation of God; God’s works in nature precede God’s words in history. We claim, moreover, that, in many cases where truth was originally communicated internally, the same Spirit who communicated it has brought about an external record of it, so that the internal revelation

        might be handed down to others than those who first received it.

        We must not limit revelation to the Scriptures. The eternal Word antedated the written word, and through the eternal Word God is made known in nature and in history. Internal revelation is preceded by, and conditioned upon, external revelation. In point of time earth comes before man, and sensation before perception. Action best expresses character, and historic revelation is more by deeds than by words. Dorner, Hist. Prot. Theol., 1:231-264 — “The Word is not in the Scriptures alone. Time whole creation reveals the Word. In measure God shows his power; in incarnation his grace and truth. Scripture testifies of these, but Scripture is not the essential Word. The Scripture is truly apprehended and appropriated when in it and through it we see the living and present

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        Christ. It does not bind men to itself alone, but it points them to the Christ of whom it testifies. Christ is the authority. In the Scriptures he points us to himself and demands our faith in him. This faith, once begotten, leads us to new appropriation of Scripture, but also to new criticism of Scripture. We find Christ more and more in Scripture, and yet we judge Scripture more and more by time standard which we find in Christ.”

        Newman Smyth, Christian Ethics, 71-82: “There is but one authority

        • Christ. His Spirit works in many ways, but chiefly in two: first, the inspiration of the Scriptures, and secondly, the leading of the church into the truth The latter is not to be isolated or separated from the former. Scripture is law to the Christian consciousness, and Christian consciousness in time becomes law to the Scripture — interpreting, criticizing. verifying it. The word and the spirit answer to each other. Scripture and faith are coordinate. Protestantism has exaggerated the first; Romanism the second. Martineau fails to grasp the coordination of Scripture and faith.”

      4. With this external record we shall also see that there is given under impossible conditions special influence of God’s Spirit, so too quicken our cognitive powers that the external record reproduces in our minds the ideas with which the minds of the writers were at first divinely filled.

        We may illustrate the need of internal revelation from Egyptology, which is impossible so long as the external revelation in the hieroglyphics is uninterpreted: from the ticking of the clock in a dark room, where only the lit candle enables us to tell the time; from the landscape spread out around the Rigi in Switzerland, invisible until the first rays of the sun touch the snowy mountain peaks. External revelation ( fane>rwsiv , <450119>Romans 1:19,20) must be

        supplemented by internal revelation ( ajpoka>luyiv

        <460210> 1 Corinthians 2:10,12) Christ is the organ of external, the Holy Spirit the organ of internal revelation. In Christ <470120>2 Corinthians 1:20) are “the yea” and “the Amen” — the objective certainty and the subjective certitude. the reality and the realization.

        Objective certainty must become subjective certitude in order to a scientific theology. Before conversion we have the first, the external truth of Christ; only at conversion and after conversion do we have the second, “Christ formed in us” ( <480419>Galatians 4:19). We heave objective revelation at Sinai ( <022022>Exodus 20:22) subjective revelation in Elisha’s knowledge of Gehazi ( <120526>2 Kings 5:26). James Russell Lowell, Winter Evening Hymn to my Fire: “Therefore with the I love to read Our brave old poets; at thy touch how stirs Life in the withered words! how swift recede Time’s

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        shadows! and how glows again Through its dead mass the incandescent verse, As when upon the anvil of the brain It glittering lay, cyclopically wrought By time fast throbbing hammers of the poet’s thought!”

      5. Internal revelations thus recorded, need external revelations thus interpreted, both furnish objective facts which may serve as proper material for science. Although revelation in its widest sense may include, and as constituting the ground of the possibility of theology does include, both insight and illumination, it may also be used to denote simply a provision of the external means of knowledge, and theology has to do with inward revelations only as they are expressed in, or as they agree with, this objective standard.

      We have here suggested the vast scope and yet the insuperable limitations of theology. So far as God is revealed, whether in nature, history, conscience, or Scripture, theology may find material for its structure.. Since Christ is not simply the incarnate Son of God but also the eternal Word, the only Revealer of God, there is no theology apart from Christ, and all theology is Christian theology. Nature and history are but the dimmer and more general disclosures of the divine Being, of which the Cross is the culmination and the key. God does not intentionally conceal himself.. He wishes to be known. He reveals himself at all times just as fully as the capacity of his creatures will permit. The infantile intellect cannot understand God’s boundlessness, nor can the perverse disposition understand God’s disinterested affection. Yet all truth is in Christ and is open to discovery by the prepared mind and heart.

      The Infinite One, so far as be is unrevealed. is certainly unknowable to the finite. But the Infinite One, so far as manifests himself, is

      knowable. This suggests the meaning of the declarations:

      <430118>John 1:18 — and no man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten son who is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him”; 14:9 — “he that hath seen me hath seen the Father”; <540616>1 Timothy 6:16 — “whom no man hath seen, nor can see” We therefore approve of the definition of Kaftan, Dogmatik, I — “Dogmatics is the science of the Christian truth which is believed and acknowledged in the church upon the ground of the divine revelation” — in so far as it limits the scope of theology to truth revealed by God and apprehended by faith. But theology presupposes both God’s external and God’s internal revelations, and these, as we shall see, include nature, history, conscience and Scripture. On the whole subject, see Kahnis, Dogmatik, 3:37-43; Nitzsch, System Christ. Doct., 72; Luthardt, Fund Truths, 193; Auberlen, Div. Rev., Introduction, 29; Martineau, Essays,

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      1:171, 280; Bibliotheca Sacra, 1867:593, and 1872:428; Porter, Human Intellect, 373-375; C. M. Mead, in Boston Lectures, 1871:58.

    2. That many of the truths thus revealed are too indefinite to constitute the material for science, because they belong to the region of the feelings, because they are beyond our full understanding, or because they are destitute of orderly arrangement.

    We reply:

    1. Theology has to do with subjective feelings only as they can be defined, and shown to be effects of objective truth upon the mind. They are not more obscure than are the facts of morals or of psychology, and the same objection which would exclude such feelings from theology would make these latter sciences impossible.

      See Jacobi and Schleiermacher, who regard theology as a mere account of devout Christian feelings, the grounding of which in objective historical facts is a matter of comparative indifference (Hagenbach, Hist. Doctrine, 2:401-403) Schleiermacher therefore called his system of theology “Der Christliche Glaube.” and many since his time have called their systems by the name of “Glaubenslehre.” Ritschl’s “value — judgments,” in like manner, render theology a merely subjective science, if any subjective science is possible. Kaftan improves upon Ritschl, by granting that we know, not only Christian feelings, but also Christian facts. Theology is the science of God, and not simply the science of faith. Allied to the view already mentioned is that of Feuerbach, to whom religion is a matter of subjective fancy; and that of Tyndall, who would remit theology to the region of vague feeling and aspiration, but would exclude it from

      the realm of science; see Feuerbach, Essence of Christianity, translated by Marian Evans (George Eliot); also Tyndall, Belfast Address.

    2. Those facts of revelation which are beyond our full understanding may, like the nebular hypothesis in astronomy, the atomic theory in chemistry, or the doctrine of evolution in biology, furnish a principle of union between great classes of other facts otherwise irreconcilable. We may define our concepts of God, and even of the Trinity, at least sufficiently to distinguish them from all other concepts; and whatever difficulty may encumber the putting of them into language only shows the importance of attempting it and the value of even an approximate success.

      Horace Bushnell: “Theology can never be a science, on account of the infirmities of language.” But this principle would render void both ethical

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      and political science. Fisher, Nat. and Meth. of Revelation, 145 — Hume and Gibbon refer to faith as something too sacred to rest on proof. Thus religious beliefs are made to hang in mid air, without any support. But the foundation of these beliefs is no less solid for the reason that empirical tests are not applicable to them. The data on which they rest are real, and the inferences from the data are fairly drawn.” Hodgson indeed pours contempt on the whole intuitional method by saying: “Whatever you are totally ignorant of, assert to be the explanation of everything else!” Yet he would probably grant that he begins his investigations by assuming his own existence. The doctrine of the Trinity is not wholly comprehensible by us, and we accept it at the first upon the testimony of Scripture; the full proof of it is found in the fact that each successive doctrine of theology is bound up with it, and with it stands or falls. The Trinity is rational because it explains Christian experience as well as Christian doctrine.

    3. Even though there were no orderly arrangement of these facts, either in nature or in Scripture, an accurate systematizing of them by the human mind would not therefore be proved impossible, unless a principle were assumed which would show all physical science to be equally impossible. Astronomy and geology are constructed by putting together multitudinous facts, which at first sight seem to have no order. So with theology. And yet, although revelation does not present to us a dogmatic system ready made, a dogmatic system is not only implicitly contained therein, but parts of the system are wrought out in the epistles of the New Testament, as for example in

    <450512>Romans 5:12-19; <461503>1 Corinthians 15:3,4; 8:6;

    <540316>1 Timothy 3:16; <580601>Hebrews 6:1, 2.

    We may illustrate the construction of theology from the dissected

    map, two pieces of which a father puts together, leaving his child to put together the rest. Or we may illustrate from the physical universe, which to the unthinking reveals little of its order “Nature makes no fences.” One thing seems to glide into another. It is man’s business to distinguish and classify and combine. Origen: “God gives us truth in single threads, which we must weave into a finished texture.” Andrew Fuller said of the doctrines of theology that “they are united together like chain-shot, so that, whichever one enters the heart, the others must certainly follow.” George Herbert ‘”Oh, that I knew how all thy lights combine, And the configuration of their glory; Seeing not only how each verse doth shine, But all the constellations of the story !”

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    Scripture hints eat the possibilities of combination, in

    <450512>Romans 5:12- 19, with its grouping of the facts of sin and salvation about the two persons, Adam and Christ; in

    <450424>Romans 4:24, 25, with its linking of the resurrection of Christ and our justification; in <460806>1 Corinthians 8:6, with its indication of the relations between the Father and Christ; in <540316>1 Timothy 3:16, with its poetical summary of the facts of redemption (see Commentaries of DeWette, Meyer, and Fairbairn); in

    <580601>Hebrews 6:1, 2, with its statement of the first principles of the Christian faith. God’s furnishing of concrete facts in theology, which we ourselves are left to systematize, is in complete accordance with his method of procedure with regard to the development of Other sciences. See Martineau, Essays, 1 29, 40; Am. Theol. Rev., 1859:101-126 — art, use the Idea, Sources and Uses of Christian Theology.



    1. In the organizing instinct of the human mind. This organizing principle is a part of our constitution. The mind cannot endure confusion or apparent contradiction in known facts. The tendency to harmonize and unify its knowledge appears as soon as the mind becomes reflective just in proportion to its endowments and culture does the impulse to systematize and formulate increase. This is true of all departments of human inquiry, but it is peculiarly true of our knowledge of God. Since the truth with regard to God is the most important of all, theology meets the deepest want of man’s rational nature. Theology is a rational necessity. If all

      existing theological systems were destroyed today, new systems would rise tomorrow. So inevitable is the operation of this law, that those who most decry theology show nevertheless that they have made a theology for themselves, and often one sufficiently meager and blundering. Hostility to theology, where it does not originate in mistaken fears for the corruption of God’s truth or in a naturally illogical structure of mind, often proceeds from a license of speculation which cannot brook the restraints of a complete Scriptural system.

      President E. G. Robinson: “Every man has as much theology as he can hold.” Consciously or unconsciously, we philosophize, as naturally as we speak prose. “Se moquer de la philosophie c’est vraiment philosopher.” Gore, Incarnation, 21 — “Christianity became metaphysical, only because man is rational. This rationality means that he must attempt ‘to give account of things,’ as Plato said, ‘because he was a man, not merely

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      because he was a Greek.’” Men often denounce systematic theology, while they extol the sciences of matter. Has God then left only the facts with regard to himself in so unrelated a state that man cannot put them together? All other sciences are valuable only as they contain or promote the knowledge of God. If it is praiseworthy to classify beetles, one science may be allowed to reason concerning Cool and the soul. to speaking of Schelling, Royce, Spirit of Modern Philosophy, 173, satirically exhorts us: “Trust your genius; follow your noble heart; change your doctrine whenever your heart changes, and change your heart often — such is the practical creed of the romanticists.” Ritchie, Darwin and Hegel, 3 — “Just those persons who disclaim metaphysics are sometimes most apt to be infected with the disease they profess to abhor — and not know when they have it.” See Shedd, Discourses and Essays, 27-52; Murphy, Scientific Bases of Faith, 195-199.

    2. In the relation of .systematic truth to the development of character. Truth thoroughly digested is essential to the growth of Christian character in the individual and in the church. All knowledge of God has its influence upon character, but most of all the knowledge of spiritual facts in their relations. Theology cannot, as has sometimes been objected, deaden the religious affections, since it only draws out from their sources and puts into rational connection with each other the truths which are best adapted to nourish the religious affections. On the other hand, the strongest Christians are those who have the firmest grasp upon the great doctrines of Christianity; the heroic ages of the church are those which have witnessed most consistently to them; the piety that can be injured by the systematic exhibition of them must be weak, or mystical, or mistaken.

      Some knowledge is necessary to conversion — at least, knowledge of sin and knowledge of a Savior; and the putting together of these two great truths is a beginning of theology. All subsequent growth of character is conditioned upon the increase of this knowledge. <510110>Colossians 1:10. — aujxano>menoi th~| ejpignw>sei tou~ Qeou~ = increasing by the knowledge of God — the instrumental dative represents the knowledge of God as the dew or rain which nurtures the growth of the plant; cf. <610318>2 Peter 3:18 — “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” For texts which represent truth as nourishment, see <240315>Jeremiah 3:15 — “feed you with knowledge and understanding”; Matthew . 4:4 — “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God”; <460301>1 Corinthians 3:1, 2 — “babes in Christ... I fed you with milk, not with meat”;

      <580514>Hebrews 5:14 — “but solid food is for full-

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      grown men.” Christian character rests upon Christian truth as its foundation: see <460310>1 Corinthians 3:10-15 — “I laid a foundation, and another buildeth thereon.” See Dorus Clarke, Saying the Catechism; Simon, on Christ Doct. and Life, in Bibliotheca Sacra, July, 1884:433-439

      Ignorance is the mother of superstition, not of devotion. Talbot W Chambers: — “Doctrine without duty is a tree without fruits; duty without doctrine is a tree without roots.” Christian morality is a fruit, which grows only from the tree of Christian doctrine. We cannot long keep the fruits of faith after have cut down the tree upon which they have grown. Balfour, Foundations of Belief, 82 “Naturalistic virtue is parasitic, mined when the host perishes, the parasite perishes also. Virtue without religion will die.” Kidd, Social Evolution, 214 — “ Because the fruit survives for a time when removed from the tree, and even mellows and ripens, shall we say that it is Independent of the tree?” The twelve manner of fruits on the Christmas tree are only tacked on, — they never grew there, and they can never reproduce their kind. The withered apple swells out under the exhausted receiver, but it will go back again to its former shrunken form; so the self righteousness of those who get out of the atmosphere of Christ and have no divine ideal with which to compare themselves. W/. M. Lisle: “It is the mistake and disaster of the Christian world the effects are sought instead of causes.” George A. Gordon, Christ of Today, 28

      • “Without the historical Christ and personal love for that Christ, the broad theology of our day will reduce itself to a dream, powerless to rouse a sleeping church.”

    3. In the importance to the preacher of definite and just views of Christian doctrine. His chief intellectual qualification must be the power clearly and comprehensively to conceive, and accurately and powerfully to express, the truth. He can be the

      agent of the Holy Spirit in converting and sanctifying men, only as he can wield “the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” ( <490617>Ephesians 6:17), or, in other language, only as he can impress truth upon the minds and consciences of his hearers. Nothing more certainly nullifies his efforts than confusion and inconsistency in his statements of doctrine. His object is to replace obscure and erroneous conceptions among his hearers by those, which are correct and vivid. He cannot do this without knowing the facts with regard to God in their relations — knowing them, in short, as parts of a system. With this truth he is put in trust. To mutilate it or misrepresent it, is not only sin against the Revealer of it — it may prove the ruin of men’s souls. The best safeguard against such mutilation or misrepresentation, is the diligent study of the

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      several doctrines of the faiths in their relations to one another, and especially to the central theme of theology , the person and work of Jesus Christ.

      The more refined and reflective the age, the more it requires reasons for feeling. Imagination, as exercised in poetry and eloquence and as exhibited in politics or war, is not less strong than of old — it is only more rational. Notice the progress from “Buncombe”, in legislative and forensic oratory, to sensible and

      logical address. Bassanio in Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice 1:1:113 “Gratiano speaks an infinite deal of nothing.... his reasons are as two

      grains of wheat hid in two bushels of chaff .” So in pulpit oratory, mere Scripture quotation and fervid appeal are no longer sufficient. As well be a howling dervish, as to indulge in windy declaration. Thought is the staple of preaching. Feeling must be roused, but only by bringing men to “the knowledge of the truth” ( <550225>2 Timothy 2:25). The preacher must furnish the basis for feeling by producing intelligent conviction. He must instruct before he can move. If the object of the preacher is first to know God, and secondly to make God known, then the study of theology is absolutely necessary to his success.

      Shall the physician practice medicine without study of physiology, or the lawyer practice law without study of jurisprudence? Professor Blackie: “One may as well expect to make a great patriot out of a fencing master. as to make a great orator out of a mere rhetorician.” The preacher needs doctrine, to prevent his being a mere barrel — organ, playing over and over the same tunes. John Henry Newman: “The false preacher is one who has to say something; the true preacher is one who has something to say.” Spurgeon,

      Autobiography, 1:167 — “Constant change of creed is sure loss.

      If a tree has to be taken up two or three times a year, you will not need to build a very large loft in which to store the apples. When people are shifting their doctrinal principles, they do not bring forth much fruit...We shall never have great preachers till we have great divines. You cannot build a man of war out of a currant bush, nor can great soul moving preachers be formed out of superficial students.” Illustrate the harmfulness of ignorant and erroneous preaching, by the mistake in a physician’s prescription; by the wrong trail at Lake Placid which led astray those ascending Whiteface; by the sowing of acorns whose crop was gathered only after a hundred years. Slight divergences from correct doctrine on our part may be ruinously exaggerated in those who come

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      after us. Though the moth — miller has no teeth, its offspring has.

      <540202>1 Timothy 2:2 — and the things which thou hast heard from me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.”

    4. In the intimate connection between correct doctrine and the safety and aggressive power of the church. The safety and progress of the church is dependent upon her “holding the pattern of sound words” ( <550313>2 Timothy 3:13), and serving as “pillar and ground of the truth” ( <540315>1 Timothy 3:15). Defective understanding of the truth results sooner or later in defects of organization, of operation, and of life. Thorough comprehension of Christian truth as an organized system furnishes, on the other hand, not only an invaluable defense against heresy and immorality, but also an indispensable stimulus and instrument in aggressive labor for the world’s conversion.

      The creeds of Christendom have not originated in mere speculative curiosity and logical hair splitting. They are statements of doctrine in which the attacked and imperiled church has sought to express the truth, which constitutes her very life. Those who deride the early creeds have small conception of the intellectual acumen and the moral earnestness that went to the making of them. The creeds of the third and fourth centuries embody the results of controversies which exhausted the possibilities of heresy with regard to the Trinity and the person of Christ, and which set up bars against false doctrine to the end of time. Mahaffy: “What converted the world was not the example of Christ’s life, — it was the dogma of his death.” Coleridge: “He who does not withstand, has no standing ground of his own.” Mrs. Browning: “Entire intellectual toleration is the mark

      of those who believe nothing.” E. G. Robinson, Christian Theology, 360-362 — “A doctrine is but a precept in the style of a proposition; and a precept is but a doctrine in the form of a command....Theology is God’s garden; its trees are trees of his planting;

      and “all the trees of the Lord are full of sap ( <19A416>Psalm 104:16).”

      Bose, Ecumenical Councils: “A creed is not catholic because a council of many or of few bishops decreed it, but because it expresses the common conviction of entire generations of men and women who turned their understanding of the New Testament into those forms of words.” Derner: “The creeds are the precipitate of the religions consciousness of mighty seen and times.” Foster, Christ. Life and Theol., 162 — “It ordinarily requires the shock of some great event to startle men into clear apprehension and crystallization of their substantial belief. Such a shock

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      was given by the rough and coarse doctrine of Arius, upon which the conclusion arrived at in the Council of Nice followed as rapidly as in chilled water the crystals of ice will sometimes form when the containing vessel receives a blow.” Balfour, Foundations of Belief, 287 — “The creeds were not explanations, but rather denials that the Arian and Gnostic explanations were sufficient, and declarations that they irremediably impoverished the idea of the Godhead. They insisted on preserving that idea in all its inexplicable fullness.” Denny, Studies in Theology, 192 — “Pagan philosophies tried to capture the church for their own ends, and to turn it into a school. In self-defense the church was compelled to become somewhat of a school on its own account. It had to assert its facts; it had to define its ideas; it had to interpret in its own way those facts which men were misinterpreting.”

      Professor Howard Osgood: “A creed is like a backbone. A man does not need to wear his backbone in front of him; but he must have a backbone, and a straight one, or he will be a flexible if not a humpbacked Christian.” Yet we must remember that creeds are credita , and not credenda ; historical statements of what the church has believed. not infallible prescriptions of what the church must believe. George Dana Boardman, The Church, 98 — “Creeds are apt to become cages.” Schurman, Agnosticism, 151 — “The creeds were meant to be defensive fortifications of religion; alas, that they should have sometimes turned their artillery against the citadel itself.” T. H.. Green: “We are told that we must be loyal to the beliefs of the Fathers. Yes, but who knows what the Fathers believe now?” George

      A. Gordon, Christ of Today. 60 — “The assumption that the Holy Spirit is not concerned in the development of theological thought, nor manifest in the intellectual evolution of mankind, is the superlative heresy of our generation The metaphysics of Jesus are absolutely essential to his ethics... If his thought is a dream, his endeavor for man is a delusion.” See Schaff, Creeds of Christendom, 1:8, 15, 16;

      Storrs, Div. Origin of Christianity, 121; Ian Maclaren (John Watson), Cure of Souls, 152; Frederick Harrison, in Fortnightly Rev., Jan. 1889.

    5. In the direct and indirect injunctions of Scripture. The Scripture urges upon us the thorough and comprehensive study of the truth ( <430539>John 5:39, margin, — “Search the Scriptures”), the comparing and harmonizing of its different parts ( <460213>1 Corinthians 2:13 — “comparing spiritual things with spiritual”), the gathering of all about the great central fact of revelation

    ( <510127>Colossians 1:27 — “which is Christ in you, the hope of glory” ), the preaching of it in its wholeness as well as in its due proportions ( <550402>2

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    Timothy 4:2 — “Preach the word”) The minister of the Gospel is called “a scribe who hath been made a disciple to the kingdom of heaven”

    ( <401352>Matthew 13:52); the “pastors” of the churches are at the same time to be “teachers” ( <490411>Ephesians 4:11); the bishop must be “apt to teach” ( <540302>1 Timothy 3:2), “handling aright the word of truth” ( <550215>2 Timothy 2:15), “holding to the faithful word which is according to the teaching, that he may be able both to exhort in the sound doctrine and to convict the gainsayers” ( <560109>Titus 1:9).

    As a means of instructing the church and of securing progress in his own understanding of Christian truth, it is well for the pastor to preach regularly each month a doctrinal sermon, and to expound in course the principal articles of the faith. The treatment of doctrine in these sermons should be simple enough to be comprehensible by intelligent youth; it should he made vivid and interesting by the help of brief illustrations; and at least one third of each sermon should be devoted to the practical applications of the doctrine propounded. See Jonathan Edwards’s sermon on the Importance of the Knowledge of Divine Truth, in Works, 4:5-11. The actual sermons met Edwards, however, are not models of doctrinal preaching for our generation. They are too scholastic in form, too metaphysical for substance; there is too little of Scripture and too little of illustration. The doctrinal preaching of the English Puritans in a similar manner addressed itself almost wholly to adults. The preaching of our Lord on the other hand was adapted also to children. No pastor should count himself faithful; who permits his young people to grow up without regular instruction from the pulpit in the whole circle of Christian doctrine. Shakespeare,

    K. Henry VI, 2nd part, 4:7 — “Ignorance is the curse of God; knowledge the wing wherewith we fly to heaven.”


Theology and religion are related to each other as effects, in different spheres, of the same cause. As theology is an effect produced in the sphere of systematic thought by the facts respecting God and the universe, so religion is an effect that these same facts produce in the sphere of individual and collective life. With 5 regard to the term ‘religion’, notice:

  1. Derivation.

    1. The derivation from relig‚re, ‘to bind back’ (man to God), is negatived by the authority of Cicero and of the best modern etymologists; by the difficulty, on this hypothesis, of explaining such terms as religio, religens,

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      and by the necessity, in that case of presupposing a fuller knowledge of sin and redemption than was common to the ancient world.

    2. The mere correct derivation is from relegere, “to go over again,” “carefully to ponder.” Its original meaning is therefore “reverent observance” (of duties due to the gods).

    For advocacy of the derivation of religio, as meaning “binding duty,” from religare, see Lange, Dogmatik, 1:185-196. This derivation was first proposed by Lactantius, Inst. Div., 4:28, a Christian writer. To meet the objection that the form religio seems derived from a verb of the third conjugation, Lange cites rebellio , from rebellare , and optio, from optare

    . But we reply that these verbs of the first conjugation, like many

    others, are probably derived from obsolete verbs of the third conjugation. For the derivation favored in the text, see Curtius, Griechische Etymologie, 5te Aufl., 364; Fick, Vergl. Worterb.,. der indoger. Spr.. 2:227; Vanicek, Gr. — I.at. Etym.. Worterb.,.,2:829; Andrews, Latin Lexicon, in voce ; Nitzsch, System of Christ. Doctrine,7; Van Oosterzee, Dogmatics, 7577; Philippi, Glaubenslehre, 1:6; Kahnis, Dogmatik, 3:18; Menzies, History of Religion, 11; Max Muller, Natural Religion, lect. 2.

  2. False Conceptions.

    1. Religion is not, as Hegel declared, a kind of knowing; for it would then be only an incomplete form of philosophy, and the measure of knowledge in each case would be the measure of piety.

      In a system of idealistic pantheism, like that of Hegel, God is the

      subject of religion as well as its object. Religion is God’s knowing of himself through the human consciousness.. Hegel did not utterly ignore other elements in religion. “Feeling, intuition, and faith belong to it,” he said, “and mere cognition is one — sided.” Yet he was always looking for the movement of thought in all forms of life; God and the universe were best developments of the primordial idea . “What knowledge is worth knowing,” he asked, “if God is unknowable? To know God is eternal life, and thinking is also true worship.” Hegel’s error was in regarding life as a process of thought, rather than in regarding thought as a process of life. Here was the reason for the bitterness between Hegel and Schleiermacher. Hegel rightly considered that feeling must become intelligent before it is truly religious, but he did not recognize the supreme importance of love in a theological system. He gave even less place to the will than he gave to the emotions, and he failed to see that the knowledge of God of which

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      Scripture speaks is a knowing, not of the intellect alone, but of the whole man, including the affectional and voluntary nature.

      Goethe: “How can a man come to know himself? Never by thinking, but by doing. Try to do your duty, and you will know at once what you are worth. You cannot play the flute by blowing alone, — you must use your fingers.” So we can never come to know God by thinking alone. <430717>John 7:17 — “If any man willeth to do his will, he shall know of the teaching, whether it is of God” The Gnostics, Stapfer, Henry VIII. all show that there may be much theological knowledge without true religion. Chillingworth’s maxim, “The Bible only, the religion of Protestants,” is inadequate and inaccurate; for the Bible, without faith, love, and obedience, may become a fetich and a snare: <430505>John 5:59,48 — “Ye search the Scriptures,...and ye will not come to me, that ye may have life” See Sterrett, Studies in Hegel’s Philosophy of Religion; Porter, Human Intellect, 59, 60, 412, 525-526, 589, 650; Moreli, Hist. Philos., 476,

      477; Hamerton, Intel. Life, 214; Bibliotheca Sacra, 9:374.

    2. Religion is not, as Schleiermacher held, the mere feeling of dependence; for such feeling of dependence is not religious, unless exercised toward God and accompanied by moral effort.

      In German theology, Schleiermacher constitutes the transition from the old rationalism to the evangelical faith. “Like Lazarus, with the grave clothes of a pantheistic philosophy entangling his steps,” yet with a Moravian experience of the life of God in the soul, he based religion upon the inner certainties of Christian feeling But, as Principal Fairbairn remarks, “Emotion is impotent unless it speaks out of conviction; and where conviction is, there will he emotion which is potent to persuade.” If Christianity is religious feeling alone, then there is no essential difference between it and other religions, for

      all alike are products of the religious sentiment. But Christianity is distinguished from other religions by its peculiar religious conceptions. Doctrine precedes life, and Christian doctrine, not mere religious feeling, is the cause of Christianity as a distinctive religion. Though faith begins in feeling, moreover, it does not end there. We see the worthlessness of mere feeling in the transient emotions of theatre — goers, and in the occasional phenomena of revivals.

      Sabatier, Philos. Relig., 27, adds to Schleiermacher’s passive element of dependence, the active element of Prayer — . Kaftan, Dogmatik, 10 — Schleiermacher regards God as the Source of our being, but forgets that he is also our End.” Fellowship and progress are as important elements in religion as is dependence; and fellowship must come before progress —

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      such fellowship as presupposes pardon and life. Schleiermacher apparently believed in neither a personal God nor his own personal immortality; see his Life and Letters, 2:77-90; Martineau, Study of Religion, 2:357. Charles Hedge compares him to a ladder in a pit — a good thing for these who wish to get out, but not for those who wish to get in. Dorner: “The Moravian brotherhood was his mother; Greece was his nurse.” On Schleiermacher, see Herzog, Realencyclopadie, in voce; Bibliotheca Sacra, 1852:375; 1883:534; Liddon, Elements of Religion, lect. I; Ebrard, Dogmatik, 1:14; Julius Muller. Doctrine of Sin, 1:175; Fisher, Supernat. Origin of Christianity, 563-570; Caird, Philos. Religion, 160-186.

    3. Religion is not, as Kant maintained, morality or moral action; for morality is conformity to an abstract law of right, while religion is essentially a relation to a person, from whom the soul receives blessing and to whom it surrenders itself in love and obedience.

      Kant, Kritik der praktischen Vernunft, Beschluss: “I know of but two beautiful things, the starry heavens above my head, and the sense of duty within my heart.” But the mere sense of duty often distresses. We object to the word “obey” as the imperative of religion, because

      1. it makes religion a matter of the will only;

      2. will presupposes affection;

      3. love is not subject to will;

      4. it makes God all law, and no grace;

      5. it makes the Christian a servant only, not a friend; cf.

    <431515>John 15:15 — “No longer do I call you servants — but I have called you friends” — a relation not of service but of love (Westcott, Bib. Com., in loco .). The voice that speaks is the voice of love, rather than the voice of law. We object also to Matthew Arnold’s definition: “Religion is ethics heightened, enkindled, and lit up by feeling; morality touched with emotion.” This leaves out of view the receptive element in religion, as well as its relation to a personal God. A truer statement would be that religion is morality toward God, as morality is religion toward man. Bowne. Philos. of Theism, 251 — “Morality that goes beyond mere conscientiousness must have recourse to religion”; see Lotze, Philos. of Religion 128-142. Goethe: “Unqualified activity, of whatever kind, heads at last to bankruptcy”; see also Pfleiderer, Philos. Religion, S:65-69; Shedd, Sermons to the Natural Man, 244-246; Lidden, Elements of Religion.


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  3. Essential Idea. Religion in its essential idea is a life in God, a 1ife lived in recognition of God, in communion with God, and under control of the indwelling Spirit of God. Since it is a life, it cannot be described as consisting solely in the exercise of any one of the powers of intellect, affection, or will. As physical life involves the unity and cooperation of all the organs of the body, so religion, or spiritual life, involves the united working of all the powers of the soul. To feeling, however, we must assign the logical priority, since holy affection toward God, imparted in regeneration, is the condition of truly knowing God and of truly serving him.

    See Godet, on the Ultimate Design of Man — “God in man, and man in God” — in Princeton Rev., Nov. 1880; Pfieiderer, Die Religion, 5- 79, and Religionsphilosophie, 255 — Religion is “Sache des ganzen Geisteslebens “: Crane, Religion of Tomorrow, 4 — Religion is the personal influence of the immanent God “; Sterrett, Reason and Authority in Religion, 31, 32 — “Religion is the reciprocal relation or communion of God and man, involving (1) revelation, (2) faith”; Dr. J. W. A. Stewart: “Religion is fellowship with God”; Pascal: “Piety is God sensible to the heart”; Ritschl, Justif and Reconcil 13

  4. Inferences.

From this definition of religion it follows:

  1. That in strictness there is but one religion. Man is a religious being, indeed, as having the capacity for this divine life. He is actually religious, however, only when he enters into this living relation to God. False religions are the caricatures which men given to sin, or the imaginations which men groping after light, form of this life of the soul in God.

    Peabody, Christianity the Religion of Nature, 18 — “If Christianity be true, it is not a religion, but the religion. If Judaism be also true, it is so not as distinct from but as coincident with Christianity, the one religion to which it can bear only the relation of a part to the whole. If there be portions of truth in other religious systems, they are not

    portions of other religions, but portions of the one religion which somehow or other became incorporated with fables and falsities.” John Caird, Fund. Ideas of Christianity, 1:23 — “You can never get at the true idea or essence of religion merely by trying to find out something that is common to all religions; and it is not the lower religions that explain the higher, but conversely the higher religion explains all the lower religions.” George P. Fisher: “The recognition of certain elements of truth in the ethnic religions does not mean that Christianity has defects which are to be repaired by borrowing from them; it only means that the ethnic faiths have in fragments what Christianity has as a whole. Comparative religion does not bring to Christianity new truth; it provides illustrations of how Christian truth meets human needs and aspirations, and gives a full vision

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    of that which the most spiritual and gifted among the heathen only dimly discerned.”

    Dr. C. H. Parkhurst, sermon on <202927>Proverbs 29:27 — “The spirit of man is the lamp of Jehovah — a lamp, but not necessarily lighted; a lamp that can be lit only by the touch of a divine flame” = mean has naturally and universally a capacity for religion, but is by no means naturally and universally religious. All false religions have some element of truth; otherwise they could never have gained or kept their hold upon mankind. We need to recognize these elements of truth in dealing with them. There is some silver in a counterfeit dollar, else it would deceive no one; but the thin washing of silver over the head does not prevent it from being bad money. Clarke, Christian Theology. 8 — “See Paul’s methods of dealing with heathen religion, in Acts 14 with gross paganism and in Acts 17 with its cultured form. He treats it with sympathy and justice. Christian theology has the advantage of walking in the light of God’s self — manifestation in Christ, while heathen religions grope after God and worship him in ignorance”; cf . <441415>Acts 14:15 — “We bring you good tidings, that ye should turn from these vain things unto a Living God”; 17:22

  2. That the content of religion is greater than that of theology. The facts of religion come within the range of theology only so far as they can be definitely conceived, accurately expressed in language, and brought into rational relation to each other.

    This principle enables us to define the proper limits of religious fellowship. It should be as wide as is religion itself. But it is important to remember what religion is. Religion is not to be identified with the capacity for religion. Nor can we regard the perversions and caricatures of religion as meriting our fellowship. Otherwise we might be required to have fellowship with devil worship, polygamy, thuggery, and the inquisition; for all these have been dignified with the name of religion. True religion involves some knowledge, however rudimentary, of the true God, the God of righteousness; some sense of sin as the contrast between human character and the divine standard; some casting of the soul upon divine mercy and a divine way of salvation, in place of self — righteous earning of merit and reliance upon one’s works and one’s record; some practical effort to realize ethical principle in a pure life and in influence over others. Wherever these marks of true religion appear, even in Unitarians, Romanists, Jews or Buddhists, there we recognize the demand for fellowship. But we also attribute these germs of true religion to the in working of the omnipresent Christ, “the light which lighteth every man”

    ( <430109>John 1:9), and we see in them incipient repentance and faith, even though the Christ who is their object is yet unknown by name. Christian fellowship must have a larger basis in accepted Christian truth, and Church fellowship a still larger basis in common

    acknowledgment of N.T. teaching as to the church. Religious fellowship, in the widest sense, rests upon the fact that “God is no respecter at persons: but in every nation he that feareth him and worketh righteousness is acceptable to him” ( <441035>Acts 10:34,35)

  3. That religion is to be distinguished from formal worship, which is simply the outward expression of religion. As such expression, worship is “formal communion between God and his people.” In it God speaks to man, and man to God. It therefore properly includes the reading of Scripture and preaching on the side of God, and prayer and in song on the side of the people.

Sterrett, Reason and Authority in Religion, 166 — “Christian worship is the utterance (outerance) of the spirit.” But there is more in true love than

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can be put into a love — letter, and there is more in true religion than can be expressed either in theology or in worship. Christian worship is communion between God and man. But communion cannot be one- sided. Madame de Sta”h, whom Heine called” a whirlwind in petticoats,” ended one of her brilliant soliloquies by saying: “What a delightful conversation we have had !” We may find a better illustration of the nature of worship in Thomas  Kempis’s dialogues between the saint and his Savior, in the Imitation of Christ. Goethe: “Against the great superiority of another there is no remedy but love… To praise a man is to put one’s self on his level.” If this be the effect of loving and praising man, what must be the effect of loving and praising God! Inscription in Grasmere Church: “Whoever thou art that enterest this church, leave it not without one prayer to God for thyself, for those who minister, and for those who worship here.” In

<590127>James 1:27 — “Pure religion and undefiled before our God and Father is this, to visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world” — “religion,” qrhskoi>a is cultus exterior ; and the meaning is that “the external service, the outward garb, the very ritual of Christianity, is a life of purity, love and self — devotion. What its true essence. its inmost spirit may be, the writer does not say, but leaves this to be inferred” On the relation between religion and worship, see Prof. Day, in New Englander, Jan. 1882; Prof. T. Harwood Pattison, Public Prayer; Trench, Syn. N. T, I; sec. 48; Coleridge, Aids to Reflection, Introduction, Aphorism 23; Lightfoot, Galatians, 351, note 2.

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    God himself, in the last analysis, must be the only source of knowledge with regard to his own being and relations. Theology is therefore a summary and explanation of the content of God’s self-revelations. These are, first , the revelation of God in nature; secondly and supremely, the revelation of God in the Scriptures.

    Ambrose: “To whom shall I give greater credit concerning God than to God himself?” Von Baader: “To knew God without God is impossible; there is no knowledge without him who is the prime source of knowledge.”

    C. A. Briggs, Whither, 8 — “God reveals truth in several spheres: in universal nature, in the constitution of mankind, in the history of our race, in the Sacred Scriptures, but above all in the person of Jesus Christ our Lord.” F. H. Johnson, What is Reality? 399 — “The teacher intervenes when needed. Revelation helps reason and conscience, but is not a substitute for them. But Catholicism affirms this substitution for the church, and Protestantism for the Bible. The Bible, like nature, gives many free gifts, but more in the germ. Growing ethical ideals must interpret the Bible.” A. J. F. Behrends: “The Bible is only a telescope, nor the eye which sees, nor the stars which the telescope brings to view. It is your business and mine to see the stars with our own eyes.” Schurmnan, Agnosticism, 175 — “The Bible is a glass through which to see the living God. but it is useless when you put your eyes out.”

    We can know God only so far as he has revealed himself. The immanent God is known, but the transcendent God we do not know any more than we know the side of the moon that is turned away from us. A. H. Strong, Christ in Creation, 113 — “The word ‘authority’ is derived from auctor, augeo , ‘to add.’ Authority adds something to the truth communicated. The thing added is the personal element of witness. This is needed wherever there is ignorance, which cannot be removed by our own effort, or unwillingness, which results from our own sin. In religion I need to add to my own knowledge that which God imparts. Reason, conscience, church, Scripture, are all delegated and subordinate authorities; the only original and supreme authority is God himself, or Christ, who is only God

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    revealed and made comprehensible by us.” Gore, Incarnation, 181 — “All legitimate authority represents the reason of God, educating the reason of man and communicating itself to it Man is made in God’s image: he is, in his fundamental capacity, a son of God, and he becomes so in fact, and fully, through union with Christ. Therefore in the truth of God, as Christ presents it to him, he can recognize his own better reason, — to use Plato’s beautiful expression, he can salute it by force of instinct as something akin to himself, before he can give intellectual account of it.”

    Balfour, Foundations of Belief, 332-337, holds that there is no such thing as unassisted reason. and that, even if there were, natural religion is not one of its products. Behind all evolution of our own reason, he says, stands the Supreme Reason. “Conscience, ethical ideals, capacity for admiration, sympathy, repentance, righteous indignation, as well as our delight in beauty and truth, are all derived from God.” Kaftan, in Am. Jour. Theology, 1900; 718, 719:), maintains that there is no other principle for dogmatics than Holy Scripture. Yet he holds that knowledge never comes directly from Scripture, but from faith. The order is not Scripture, doctrine, faith; but rather Scripture, faith, doctrine. Scripture is no more a direct authority than is the church. Revelation is addressed to the whole man, that is, to the will of the man, and it claims obedience from him. Since all Christian knowledge is mediated through faith, it rests on obedience to the authority of revelation, and revelation is self- manifestation on the part of God. Kaftan should have recognized more fully that not simply Scripture, but all knowable truth, is a revelation from God, and that Christ is “the light which lighteth every man” ( <430109>John 1:9). Revelation is an organic whole, which begins in nature, but finds its climax and key in the historical Christ whom Scripture presents to us. See

    H. C. Minton’s review of Martheau’s Seat of Authority, in Presb, and

    Ref. Rev., Apr. 1900:203 sq.

    1. Scripture and Nature. By nature we here mean not only physical facts, or facts with regard to the substances, properties, forces, and laws of the material world, but also spiritual facts, or facts with regard to the intellectual and moral constitution of man, and the orderly arrangement of human society and history.

      We here use the word “nature” in the ordinary sense, as including man. There is another and more proper use of the word “nature,” which makes it simply a complex of forces and beings under the law of cause and effect. To nature in this sense man belongs only as respects his body, while as immaterial and personal he is a supernatural being. Free will is not under the law of physical and mechanical causation. As Bushnell has

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      said: “Nature and the supernatural together constitute the one system of God.” Drummond, Natural Law in the Spiritual World, 232 — “Things are natural or supernatural according to where we stand. Man is supernatural to the mineral; God is supernatural to the man.” We shall in subsequent chapters use the term “nature” in the narrow sense. The universal rise of the phrase “Natural Theology,’ however, compels us in this chapter to employ the word “nature “in its broader sense as including man, although we do this under protest, and with this explanation of the more proper meaning of the term. See Hopkins, in Princeton Review, Sept. 1882:183 sq .

      E. G. Robinson: “Bushnell separates nature from the supernatural. Nature is a blind train of causes. God has nothing to do with it, except as he steps into it from without. Man is supernatural, because He is outside of nature, having the power of originating an independent train of causes.” If this were the proper conception of nature, then we might be compelled to conclude with P. T. Forsyth, in Faith and Criticism, 100) — “There is no revelation in nature. There can be none, because there is no forgiveness. We cannot be sure about her. She is only aesthetic. Her ideal is harmony, not reconciliation….For the conscience, stricken or strong, she has no word….Nature does not contain her own teleology, and for the moral soul that refuses to be fancy-fed, Christ is the one luminous smile on the dark face of the world.” But this is virtually to confine Christ’s revelation to Scripture or to the incarnation. As there was an astronomy without the telescope, so there was a theology before the Bible. George Harris, Moral Evolution, 411 — “Nature is both evolution and revelation. As soon as the question How is answered, the questions Whence and Why arise. Nature is to God what speech is to thought.” The title of Henry Drummond’s book should have been: “Spiritual Law in the Natural World,” for nature is but the free though regular activity of God; what we call the supernatural is simply his extraordinary working.

      1. Natural Theology . The universe is a source of theology. The Scriptures assert that God has revealed himself in nature. There is not only an outward witness to his existence and character in the constitution and government of the universe (Psalm 19; <441417>Acts 14:17; <450120>Romans 1:20), but an inward witness to his existence and character in the heart of every man ( <450117>Romans 1:17, 18, 19, 20, 32; 2:15). The systematic exhibition of these facts, whether derived from observation, history or science, constitutes natural theology

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        Outward witness: Pr. 19:1 “The heavens declare the glory of God”; Acts: 14:17 — “he left not himself without witness, in that he did good, and gave you from heaven rains and fruitful seasons”

        <450120>Romans 1:20 — “for the invisible things of him since the creation of the world are clearly seen, being perceived through the things that are made, even his everlasting power and divinity.” Inward witness: <450119>Romans 1:19 — to> gnwsto<n tou~ Qeou~ “that which in known of God is manifest in them.” Compare the ajpokalu>ptetai of the gospel in verse 17, with the ajpokalu>ptetai of wrath in verse 18 — two revelations, one of ojrgh> , the other of ca>riv ; see Shedd, Homiletics, 11. <450132>Romans 1:32 — “knowing the ordinance of God”; 2:15 — “they show the Work of the law written in their hearts.” Therefore even the heathen are “without excuse”

        ( <450129>Romans 1:29) There are two books: Nature and Scripture

        • one written, the other unwritten: and there is need of studying both. On the passages in Romans, see the Commentary of Hodge.

          Spurgeon told of a godly person who, when sailing down the Rhine, closed his eyes, lest the beauty of the scene should divert his mind from spiritual themes. The Puritan turned away from the moss-rose, saying that he would count nothing on earth lovely. But this is to despise God’s works. .J. H. Burrows: “The Himalayas are the raised letters upon which we blind children put our fingers to spell out the name of God.” To despise the works of God is to despise God himself. God is present in nature, and is now speaking. <191904>Psalm 19:4 — “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament showeth his handiwork” — present tenses. Nature is not so much a book, as a voice. Hutton, Essays, 2:236

        • “The direct knowledge of spiritual communion must be

          supplemented by knowledge of God’s ways gained from the study of nature. To neglect the study of the natural mysteries of the universe leads to an arrogant and illicit intrusion of moral and spiritual assumptions into a different world. This is the lessons of the book of Job.” Thatch, Hibbert Lectures, 85 — “Man, the servant and interpreter of nature, is also, and is thereby, the servant and interpreter of the living God.” Books of science are the record of man’s past interpretations of God’s works.

      2. Natural Theology Supplemented. — The Christian revelation is the chief source of theology. The Scriptures plainly declare that the revelation of God in nature does not supply all the knowledge which a sinner needs

        ( <441723>Acts 17:23; <490309>Ephesians 3:9). This revelation is therefore supplemented by another, in which divine attributes and merciful provisions only dimly shadowed forth in nature are made known to men. This latter

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        revelation consists of a series of supernatural events and communications, the record of which is presented in the Scriptures.

        <441723> Acts 17:23 — Paul shows that, though the Athenians, in the erection of an altar to an unknown God, “acknowledged a divine existence beyond any which the ordinary rites of their worship recognized, that Being was still unknown to them; they had no just conception of his nature and perfections” (Hackett, in loco ).

        <490309>Ephesians 3:9 — “the mystery which hath been hid in God”

        • this mystery is in the gospel made known for man’s salvation. Hegel, in his Philosophy of Religion, says that Christianity is the only revealed religions, because the Christians God is the only one from whom a revelation can come. We may add that as science is the accord of man’s progressive interpretation of God’s revelation in the realm of nature, so Scripture is the record of man’s progressive interpretation of God’s revelation in the realm of spirit. The phrase “word of God” does not primarily denote a record, — it is the spoken word, the doctrine , the vitalizing truth , disclosed by Christ; see

          <401319> Matthew 13:19Æ “heareth the word of the kingdom”:

          <420501>Luke 5:1 — “heard the word of God”; <440125>Acts 1:25 — “spoken the word of the Lord”; 13:48,49 “glorified the word of God:

          …the word of the Lord was spread abroad”; 19:18, 20-19:10,20 — “heard the word of the Lord… mightily grew the word of the Lord”.

          <460118>1 Corinthians 1:18 — “the word of the cross” — all designating not a document, but an unwritten word; cf. Jeremiah 1 4

        • “the word of Jehovah came unto me” <260103>Ezekiel 1:3 — ‘”the word of Jehovah came expressly ants Ezekiel, the priest.”

      3. The Scriptures the Final Standard of Appeal. — Science and Scripture throw light upon each other. The same divine Spirit who gave both revelations is still present, ennabling the

        believer to interpret the one by the other and thus progressively to come to the knowledge of the truth. Because of our finiteness and sin, the total record in Scripture of God’s past communications is a more trustworthy source of theology than are our conclusions from nature or our private impressions of the teaching of the Spirit. Theology therefore looks to the Scripture itself as its chief source of material and its final standard of appeal.

        There is an internal work of the divine Spirit by which the outer word is made an inner word, and its truth and power are manifested to the heart. Scripture represents this work of the Spirit, not as a giving of new truth, but as an illumination of the mind to perceive the fullness of meaning which lay wrapped up in the truth already revealed. Christ is “the truth” ( <431406>John 14:6); “in whom are all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge

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        hidden” ( <510203>Colossians 2:3) the Holy Spirit, Jesus says, “shall take of mine. and shall declare it unto you” ( <431614>John 16:14). The incarnation and the Cross express the heart of God and the secret of the universe; all discoveries in theology are but the unfolding of truth involved in these facts. The Spirit of Christ enables us to compare nature with Scripture, and Scripture with nature, and to correct mistakes in interpreting the one by light gained from the other. Because the church as a whole, by which we mean the company of true believers in all lands and ages, has the promise that it shall be guided “into all the truth” ( <431613>John 16:13), we may confidently expect the progress of Christian doctrine.

        Christian experience is sometimes regarded as an original source of religious truth. Experience, however, is but a testing and proving of the truth objectively contained in God’s revelation. The word “experience” is derived from experior , to test, to try. Christian consciousness is not “norma normans,” but ‘ norma normata.” Light, like life, comes to us through the mediation of others. Yet the first comes from God as really as the last, of which without hesitation we say: “God made me,” though we have human parents. As I get through the service pipe in my house the same water, which is stored in the reservoir upon the hillside, so in the Scriptures I get the same truth, which the Holy Spirit originally communicated to prophets and apostles. Calvin, Institutes, book l, chap. 7 — As nature has an immediate manifestation of God in conscience, a mediate in his works., so revelation has an immediate manifestation of God in the Spirit, a mediate in the Scriptures.” “Man’s nature,” said Spurgeon, “is not an organized lie, yet his inner consciousness has been warped by sin, and though once it was an infallible guide in truth and duty, sin has made it very deceptive. The standard of infallibility is not in man’s consciousness, but in the Scriptures. When consciousness in any matter is contrary to the word of God, we must know that it is not

        God’s voice within us, but the devil’s.” Dr. George A. Gordon says that “Christian history is a revelation of Christ additional to that contained in the New Testament.” Should we not say “illustrative,” instead of “additional”? On the relation between Christian experience and Scripture, see Stearns, Evidence of Christian Experience, 286- 309: Twestem, Dogmatik, 1:344-348; Hodge, Systematic Theology, 1:15.

        H. H. Bawden: “God is the ultimate authority, but there are delegated authorities, such as family, state, church; instincts, feelings, conscience; the general experience of the race, traditions, utilities; revelation in nature and in Scripture But the highest authority available for men in morals and Religion is the truth concerning Christ contained in the Christian Scriptures. What the truth concerning Christ is, is determined by:

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        1. the human reason, conditioned by a right attitude of the feelings and the will;

        2. in the light of all the truth derived from nature, including man;

        3. in the light of the history of Christianity;

        4. in the light of the origins and development of the Scriptures themselves. The authority of the generic reason and the authority of the Bible are co- relative, since they both have been developed in the providence of God, and since the latter is in large: measure but the reflection of the former. ‘This view enables us to hold a rational conception of the function of the Scripture in religion. This view, further, enables us to rationalize what is called the inspiration of the Bible, the nature and extent of inspiration, the Bible as history — a record of the historic unfolding of revelation; the Bible as literature

        • a compendium of life principles, rather than a book of rules; the Bible Christocentric — an incarnation of the divine thought and will in human thought and language.”

      4. The Theology of Scripture Not Unnatural — Though we speak of the systematized truths of nature as constituting natural theology, we are not to infer that Scriptural theology is unnatural. Since the Scriptures have the same author as nature, the same principles are illustrated in the one as in the other. All the doctrines of the Bible have their reason in that same nature of God, which constitutes the basis of all material things. Christianity is a supplementary dispensation, not as contradicting, or correcting errors in, natural theology, but as more perfectly revealing the truth. Christianity is indeed the ground plan upon which the whole creation is built — the

      original and eternal truth of which natural theology is but a partial expression. Hence the theology of nature and the theology of Scripture are mutually dependent. Natural theology not only prepares the way for, but it receives stimulus and aid from, Scriptural theology. Natural theology may now be a source of truth, which, before the Scriptures came, it could not furnish.

      John Caird, Fund. Ideas of Christianity, 23 — “There is no such thing as a natural religion or religion of reason distinct from revealed religion. Christianity is more profoundly, more comprehensively, rational, more accordant with the deepest principles of human nature and human thought than is natural religion; or as we may put it, Christianity is natural religion elevated and transmuted into revealed.” Peabody, Christianity the Religion of Nature, lecture 2, Æ”Revelation is the unveiling, uncovering of

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      what previously existed, and it excludes the idea of newness, invention, creation....The revealed religion of earth is the natural religion of heaven.”

      Compare <661308>Revelation 13:8 — “the Lamb that hath been slain from the foundation of the world” = the coming of Christ was no make shift; in a true sense the Cross existed in eternity: /the atonement is a revelation of an eternal fact in the being of God.

      Note Plato’s illustration of the cave which can be easily threaded by one who has previously entered it with a torch. Nature is the dim light from the cave’s mouth; the torch is Scripture. Kant to Jacobi, in Jacobi’s Werke, 3:523 — “If the gospel had not previously taught the universal moral laws, reason would not yet have obtained so perfect an insight into them.” Alexander McLaren: “Non-Christian thinkers now talk eloquently about God’s love, and even reject the gospel in the name of that love, thus kicking down the ladder by which they have climbed. But it was the Cross that taught the world the love of God, and apart from the death of Christ men may hope that there is a heart at the center of the universe, but they can never be sure of it.” The parrot fancies that he taught men to talk, So Mr. Spencer fancies that he invented ethics. He is only using the twilight, after his sun has gone down. Dorner, Hist. Prot. Theol., 252,253 — “Faith, at the Reformation, first gave scientific certainty; it had God sure: hence it proceeded to banish skepticism in philosophy and science.” See also Dove, Logic of Christian Faith, 333; Bowne, Metaph. And Ethics, 442-463; Bibliotheca Sacra, 1874:436; A. H. Strong, Christ in Creation, 226, 227.

    2. Scripture and Rationalism. Although the Scriptures make known much that is beyond the power of man’s unaided reason to discover or fully to comprehend, their teachings, when taken together, in no way contradict a reason conditioned in its

      activity by a holy affection and enlightened by the Spirit of God. To reason in the large sense, as including the mind’s power of cognizing God and moral relations — not in the narrow sense of mere reasoning, or the exercise of the purely logical faculty — the Scriptures continually appeal.

      1. The proper office of reason, in this large sense, is :

        1. To furnish us with those primary ideas of space, time, cause, substance, design, right, and God, which are the conditions of all subsequent knowledge.

        2. To judge with regard to man’s need of a special and supernatural revelation.

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        3. To examine the credentials of communications professing to be, or of documents professing to record, such a revelation.

        4. To estimate and reduce to system the facts of revelation, when these have been found properly attested.

        5. To deduce from these facts their natural and logical conclusions. Thus reason itself prepares the way for a revelation above reason, and warrants an implicit trust in such revelation when once given.

        Dove, Logic of the Christian Faith, 318 — “Reason terminates in the proposition: Look for revelation.” Leibnitz: “Revelation is the viceroy who first presents his credentials to the provincial assembly (reason), and then himself presides.” Reason can recognize truth after it is made known, as for example in the demonstrations of geometry, although it could never discover that truth for itself. See Calderwood’s illustration of the party lost in the woods, who wisely take the course indicated by one at the tree top with a larger view than their own (philosophy of the Infinite, 126.) the novice does well to trust his guide in the forest, at least till he learns to recognize for himself the marks blazed upon the trees. Luthardt, Fund. Truths, lect. viii- “Reason could never have invented a self-humiliating God, cradled in a manger and dying on a cross.” Lessing, Zur Geschichte und Litteratur, 6:134 — “What is the meaning of a revelation that reveals nothing?”

        Ritschl denies the presuppositions of any theology based on the Bible as the infallible work of God on the one hand, and on the validity of the knowledge of God as obtained by scientific and philosophic processes on the other. Because philosophers, scientists, and even exegetes, are not agreed among themselves, he concludes that no

        trustworthy results are attainable by human reason. We grant that reason without love will fall into may errors with regard to God, and that faith is therefore the organ by which religious truth is to be apprehended. But we claim that this faith includes reason, and is itself reason in its highest form. Faith criticizes and judges the processes of natural science as well as the contents of Scripture. But it also recognizes in science and Scripture prior workings of that same Spirit of Christ, which is the source and authority of the Christian life. Ritschl ignores Christ’s world relations and therefore secularizes and disparages science and philosophy, as well as in the interpretation of Scripture as a whole, and that these results constitute an authoritative revelation. See Orr, the Theology of Ritschl; Dorner, Hist. Prot. Theol., 1:233 — “The unreasonable in the empirical reason is taken

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        captive by faith, which is the nascent true reason that despairs of itself and trustfully lays hold of objective Christianity.”

      2. Rationalism, on the other hand, holds reason to be the ultimate source of all religious truth, while Scripture is authoritative only so far as its revelations agree with previous conclusions of reason, or can be rationally demonstrated. Every form of rationalism, therefore, commits at least one of the following errors:

      1. That of confounding reason with mere reasoning, or the exercise of the logical intelligence.

      2. That of ignoring the necessity of a holy affection as the condition of all right reason in religious things.

      3. That of denying our dependence in our present state of sin upon god’s past revelations of himself.

      4. That of regarding the unaided reason, even its normal and unbiased state, as capable of discovering, comprehending, and demonstrating all religious truth.

      Reason must not be confounded with ratiocination, or mere reasoning. Shall we follow reason? Yes, but not individual reasoning, against the testimony of those who are better informed than we; nor by insisting on demonstration, where probable evidence alone is possible; not by trusting solely to the evidence of the senses, when spiritual things are in question. Coleridge, in replying to those who argued that all knowledge comes to us from the senses, says: “At any rate we must bring to all facts the light in which we see them.” This

      the Christian does. The light of love reveals much that would otherwise be invisible. Wordsworth, Excursion, book 5

      (598) — “The mind’s repose on evidence is not likely to be ensured by act of naked reason. Moral truth is no mechanic structure, built by rule.”

      Rationalism is the mathematical theory of knowledge. Spinoza’s Ethics is an illustration of it. It would deduce the universe from an axiom. Dr. Hodge very wrongly described rationalism as “an overuse of reason.” It is rather the use of an abnormal, perverted, improperly conditi0ned reason; see Hodge, Systematic Theology, 1:34, 39, 55, and criticism by Miller, in his Fetich in theology. The phrase “sanctified intellect” means simply intellect accompanied by right affections toward God, and trained to work under their influence. Bishop Butler: “Let reason be kept to, but let not such poor creatures as we are go on objecting to infinite scheme that we

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      do not see the necessity or usefulness of all its parts, and call that reasoning.” Newman Smyth, Death’s Place in Evolution, 86 — “Unbelief is a shaft sunk down into the darkness of the earth.

      Drive the shaft deep enough, and it would come out into the sunlight on the earth’s other side.” The most unreasonable people in the world are those who depend solely upon reason in the narrow sense. “The better to exalt reason, they make the world irrational.” “The hen that has hatched ducklings walks with them to the water’s edge but there she stops, and she is amazed when they go on. So reason stops and faith goes on, finding its proper element in the invisible. Reason is the feet that stand on solid earth; faith is the wings that enable us to fly; and normal man is a creature with wings.” Compare gnw~siv

      ( <540620>1 Timothy 6:20 — the knowledge which is falsely so call”) with ejpi>gnwsi ( <610102>2 Peter 1:2 — “the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord” = full knowledge, or true knowledge). See Twesten, Dogmatik 1:467-500; Julius Muller, Proof-texts, 4,5; Mansel, Limits of Religious thought, 96; Dawson, Modern Ideas of Evolution.

    3. Scripture and Mysticism . As rationalism recognizes too little as coming from God, so mysticism recognizes too much.

      1. True mysticism. — We have seen that there is an illumination of the minds of all believers by the Holy Spirit. The Spirit, however makes no new revelation of truth, but uses for his instrument the truth already revealed by Christ in nature and in the Scriptures. The illuminating work of the Spirit is therefore an opening of men’s minds to understand Christ’s previous revelations. As one initiated into the mysteries of Christianity, every true believer may be called a mystic. True

        mysticism is that higher knowledge and fellowship which the Holy Spirit gives through the use of nature and scripture as subordinate and principal means

        “Mystic” = one initiated, from mu>w , “to close the eyes” — probably in order that the soul may have inward vision of truth. But divine truth is a “mystery,” not only as something into which one must be initiated, but as ujperba>llousa th~v gnw>sewv ( <490319>Ephesians 3:19) — surpassing full knowledge, even to the believer; see Meyer on <451125>Romans 11:25 — “I would not, brethren, have you ignorant of this mystery.” The Germans have Mystik . With a favorable sense,... Mysticismus with an unfavorable sense, — corresponding respectively to our true and false mysticism. True mysticism is intimated in <431613>John 16:13 — “the spirit of truth... shall guide you into all the truth”; <490309>Ephesians 3:9 — “dispensation of the mystery”; <460210>1 Corinthians 2:10 — “unto us God revealed them through

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        the Spirit.” Nitzsch, Syst. of Christ. Doct., 35 — “Whenever the true religion revives. There is an outcry against mysticism, i.e. higher knowledge, fellowship. activity through the Spirit of God in the heart.” Compare the charge against Paul that he was mad. in

        <442624>Acts 26:24, 25, with his self vindication in <470513>2 Corinthians 5:13 — “whether we are beside ourselves, it is unto God.”

        Inge, Christian Mysticism,21 — “Harnack speaks of mysticism as rationalism applied to a sphere above reason. He should have said reason applied to a sphere above rationalism. Its fundamental doctrine is the unity of all existence. Man can realize his individuality only by transcending it and finding himself in the larger unity of God

        • being. Man is a microcosm. He recapitulates the race, the universe, Christ himself.” Ibid ., 5 — Mysticism is “the attempt to realize in thought and feeling the immanence of the temporal in the eternal, and of the eternal in the temporal. It implies

          1. that the soul can see and perceive spiritual truth;

          2. that man, in order to know God, must be a partaker of the divine nature;

          3. that without holiness no man can see the Lord;

          4. that the true hierophant of the mysteries of God is love. The ‘scala perfectionis’ is

            1. the purgative life;

            2. the illuminative life;

            3. the unitive life.”

          Stevens. Johannine Theology, 239, 240 — “The mysticism of John...

          is not a subjective mysticism which absorbs the soul in self contemplation and revery, but an objective and rational mysticism, which lives in a world of realities, apprehends divinely revealed feelings and fancies, but upon Christ. It involves an acceptance of him and a life of obedience to him. Its motto is: Abiding in Christ.” As the power press cannot dispense with the type, so the Spirit of God does not dispense with Christ’s external revelations in nature and in Scripture. E.G. Robinson, Christian Theology, 364 — “The word of God is a form or mould, into which the Holy Spirit delivers us when he creates us anew” cf.

          <450617> Romans 6:17 — “became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching whereunto ye were delivered.”

      2. False Mysticism. — Mysticism, however, as the term is commonly used, errs in holding to the attainment of religious knowledge by direct

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      communication from God, and by passive absorption of the human activities into the divine. It either partially or wholly loses sight of

      1. the outward organs of revelation, nature and the Scriptures;

      2. the activity of the human powers in the reception of all religious knowledge;

      3. the personality of man, and, by consequence, the personality of God.

      In opposition to false mysticism, we are to remember that the Holy Spirit works through the truth externally revealed in nature and in Scripture

      ( <441417>Acts 14:17 — “he left not himself without witness”;

      <450120>Romans 1:20 — “the invisible things of him since the creation of the world are clearly seen”; <440751>Acts 7:51 — “ye do always resist the Holy Spirit: as your fathers did, so do ye”;

      <490617>Ephesians 6:17 — “the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God”). By this truth already given we are to test all new communications which would contradict or supersede it ( <620401>1 John 4:1 — “believe not every spirit, but prove the spirits, whether they are of God”; <490510>Ephesians 5:10 — “proving what is well pleasing unto the Lord”). By these tests we may try Spiritualism, Mormonism, Swedenborgianism. Note the mystical tendency in Francis de Sales, Thomas a Kempis, Madame Guyon, Thomas C. Upham. These writers seem at times to advocate an unwarrantable abnegation of our reason and will, and a “swallowing up of man in God.” But Christ does not deprive us of reason and will; he only takes from us the perverseness of our reason and the selfishness of

      our will; so reason and will are restored to their normal clearness and strength. Compare <191607>Psalm 16:7 — “Jehovah, who hath given me counsel; yea, my heart instructeth me in the night seasons” = God teaches his people through the exercise of their own faculties.

      False mysticism is sometime present though unrecognized. All expectation of results without the use of means partakes of it. Martineau, seat of Authority, 288 — “The lazy will would like to have the vision while the eye that apprehends it sleeps.” Preaching without preparation is like throwing ourselves down from a pinnacle of the temple and depending on God to send an angel to hold up up. Christian Science would trust to supernatural agencies, while casting aside the natural agencies God has already provided; as if a drowning man should trust to prayer while refusing to seize the rope. Using Scripture “ad aperturam libri” is like guiding one’s actions by a throw of the dice. Allen, Jonathan Edwards, 171, note — “Both Charles and John Wesley were agreed in accepting the

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      Moravian method of solving doubts as to some course of action by opening the Bible at hazard and regarding the passage on which the eye first alighted as a revelation of God’s will in the matter”; cf . Wedgewood, Life of Wesley, 193; Southey, Life of Wesley, 1:216. J.

      G. Paton, Life, 2:74 — “After many prayers and wrestlings and tears,

      I went alone before the Lord, and on my knees cast lots, with a solemn appeal to God, and the answer came: ‘Go home!’” He did this only once in his life, in overwhelming perplexity, and finding no light from human counsel. “To whomsoever this faith is given,” he says, “let him obey it.”

      F.B. Meyer, Christian Living, 18 — “It is a mistake to seek a sign from heaven; to run from counselor to counselor; to cast a lot; or to trust in some chance coincidence. Not that God may not reveal his will thus; but because it is hardly the behavior of a child with its Father. There is a more excellent way,” — namely, appropriate Christ who is wisdom, and then go forward, sure that we shall be guided, as each new step must be taken, or word spoken, or decision made. Our service is to be “rational service” ( <451201>Romans 12:1); blind and arbitrary action is inconsistent with the spirit of Christianity. Such action makes us victims of temporary feeling and a prey to Satanic deception. In cases of perplexity, waiting for light and waiting upon God will commonly enable us to make an intelligent decision, while “whatsoever is not of faith is sin” ( <451423>Romans 14:23). “False mysticism reached its logical result in the Buddhistic theosophy. In that system man becomes most divine in the extinction of his own personality. Nirvana is reached by the eightfold path of right view, aspiration, speech, conduct, livelihood, effort, mindfulness, rapture; and Nirvana is the loss of ability to say: ‘This is I’ and ‘This is mine.’ Such was Hypatia’s attempt, by subjection of self, to be wafted away into the arms of Jove. George Eliot was wrong when she said: ‘The happiest woman has no history.’ Self-denial is not self-effacement.

      The cracked bell has no individuality. In Christ we become our complete selves.”

      <510209> Colossians 2:9,10 — “For in him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily, and in him ye are make full.”

      Royce, World and Individual, 2:248, 249 — “Assert the spiritual man; abnegate the natural man. The fleshly self is the root of all evil; the spiritual self belongs to a higher realm.

      But this spiritual self lies at first outside the soul; it becomes ours only by grace. Plato rightly made the eternal ideas the source of all human truth and goodness. Wisdom comes into a man, like Aristotle’s nou~v .” A.H. Bradford, The Inner Light, in making the direct teaching of the Holy Spirit the sufficient if not the sole source of religious knowledge, seems to

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      us to ignore the principle of evolution in religion. God builds upon the past. His revelation to prophets and apostles constitu8tes the norm and corrective of our individual experience, even while our experience throws new light upon that revelation. On Mysticism, true and false, see Inge, Christian Mysticism, 4, 5, 11; Stearns, Evidence of Christian Experience, 280-294; Dorner, Geschichte d. prot. Theol., 48-59, 243; Herzog, Encycl., art.:Mystik,m by Lange; Vaughn,Hours with the Mystics, 1:199; Morell, Hist. Philos., 58, 191-215, 445-625,

      726; Hodge, Syst. theol., 1:61-69, 97, 104; Fleming, Vocab. Philos., in voce ; Tholuck, Introduction To Bluthendasmmlung aus der morgenlandischen Mystik; William James, Varieties of Religious Experience, 379-429.

    4. Scripture and Romanism . While the history of doctrine, as showing the progressive apprehension and unfolding by the church of the truth contained in nature and Scripture, is a subordinate source of theology, Protestantism recognizes the Bible as under Christ the primary and final authority

    Romanism., on the other hand, commits the two-fold error

    1. of making the church, and not the Scriptures, the immediate and sufficient source of religious knowledge; and

    2. of making the relation of the individual to Christ depend upon his relation to the church, instead of making his relation to the church depend upon, follow, and express his relation to Christ.

    In Roman Catholicism there is a mystical element. The Scriptures are not complete or final standard of belief and practice. God gives to the world from time to time, through popes and councils, new

    communications of truth. Cyprian: “He who has not the church for his mother, has not God for his Father.” Augustine: “I would not believe the Scripture, unless the authority of the church also influenced me.” Francis of Assisi and Ignatius Loyola both represented the truly obedient person as one dead, moving only as moved by his superior; the true Christian has no life of his own, but is the blind instrument of the church. John Henry Newman, Tracts, Theol, and Ecclesiastes, 287 — “The Christian Dogmas were in the church from the time of the apostles, — they were ever in their substance what they are now.” But this is demonstrably untrue of the immaculate conception of the Virgin Mary; of the treasury of merits to be distributed in indulgences; of the infallibility of the pope (see Gore. Incarnation, 186) In place of the true doctrine, “Ubi Spiritus, ibi ecclesia,” Romanism substitutes her maxim, “Ubi ecclesia, ibi Spiritus.” Luther saw in this the

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    principle of mysticism, when he said: “Papatus est merus enthusiasmus.” See Hodge, Systematic Theology, 1:61-69.

    In reply to the Romanist argument that the church was before the Bible, and that the same body that gave the truth at the first can make additions to that truth, we say that the unwritten word was before the church and made the church possible. The word of God existed before it was written down and by that word the first disciples as well as the latest were begotten ( <600123>1 Peter 1:23 — “begotten again... through the word of God”. The grain of truth in Roman Catholic doctrine is expressed in <540315>1 Timothy 3:15 — “the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth” = the church is God’s appointed proclaimer of truth; cf.

    <500216> Philippians 2:16 — “holding forth the word of life.” But the

    church can proclaim the truth, only if it is built upon the truth. So we may say that the American Republic is the pillar and ground of liberty in the world; but this is true only so far as the Republic is built upon the principle of liberty as its foundation. When the Romanist asks: “Where was your church before Luther?” the Protestant may reply: “Where yours is not now — in the word of God. Where was your face before it was washed? Where was the fine flour before the wheat went to the mill?” Lady Jane Grey, three days before her execution, February 12, 1554, said: “I ground my faith on God’s word, and not upon the church; for if the church be a good church, the faith of the church must be tried by God’s word, and not God’s word by the church, nor yet my faith.”

    The Roman church would keep men in perpetual childhood — coming to her for truth. Instead of going directly to the Bible; “like the foolish mother who keeps her boy pining in the house lest he stub his toe, and would love best to have him remain a babe forever, that she might mother him still.” Martensen, Christian Dogmatics, 30.

    “Romanism is so busy in building up a system of guarantees, that she forgets the truth of Christ which she would guarantee.” George Herbert: “What wretchedness can give him any room, Whose house is foul while he adores his broom!” It is a semi-parasitic doctrine of safety without intelligence or spirituality. Romanism says: “Man for the machine!” Protestantism: “The machine for man!” Catholicism strangles, Protestantism restores individuality. Yet the Romanist principle sometimes appears in so called Protestant churches. The Catechism published by the League of the Holy Cross, in the Anglican Church, contains the following: “It is to the priest only that the child must acknowledge his sins, if he desires that God should forgive him. Do you know why? It is because God, when on earth, gave to his priests and to them alone the power of forgiving sins. Go to the priest, who is the doctor of your soul, and who cures you in the name of God.”

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    But this contradicts <431007>John 10:7 — where Christ says “I am the door”; and <460311>1 Corinthians 3:11 — “other foundation can no man lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ” = Salvation is attained by immediate access to Christ, and there s no door between the soul and him. See Dorner, Gesch. Prot. Theol., 227; Schleiermacher. Glaubensleher 1:24; Robinson, in Mad. Av. Lectures, 387; Fisher, Nat. Law in Spir. World, 327/


    Although theology derives its material from God’s twofold revelation, it does not profess to give an exhaustive knowledge of God and of the relations between God and the universe. After showing what material we have, we must show what material we have not. We have indicated the sources of theology; we now examine its limitations. Theology has its limitations:

    1. In the finiteness of the human understanding . This gives rise to a class of necessary mysteries, or mysteries connected with the infinity and incomprehensibleness of the divine nature ( <181107>Job 11:7; <451133>Romans 11:33).

      <181107> Job 11:7 — “Canst thou by searching find out God? Canst thou find out the Almighty to perfection?” <451133>Romans 11:33 — “how unsearchable are his judgements, and his ways past finding out!” Every doctrine, therefore, has its inexplicable side. Here is the proper meaning of Tertuillian’s sayings: “Certum est, quia impossible est; quo absurdius, eo verius”; that of Anseim: “Credo, ut intelligam”; and that of Abelard: “Qui credit cito, levis corde est.” Drummond, Nat. Law in Sir. World: “A science without mystery is unknown; a

      religion without mystery is absurd.” E.G. Robinson: “A finite being cannot grasp even its own relations to the Infinite.” Hovy, Manual of Christ, Theol., 7 — “To infer from the perfection of God that all his works [nature, man, inspiration] will be absolutely and unchangeably perfect: to infer from the sovereignty of God that man is not a free moral agent; — all these inferences are rash; they are inferences from the cause to the effect, while the cause is imperfectly known.” See Calderwood, Philos. Of Infinite, 491; Sir Wm. Hamilton, Discussions, 22.

    2. In the imperfect state of science, both natural and metaphysical. This gives rise to a class of accidental mysteries, or mysteries which consist in

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      the apparently irreconcilable nature of truths, which, taken separately, are perfectly comprehensible.

      We are the victims of a mental or moral astigmatism, which sees a single point of truth as two. We see God and man, divine sovereignty and human freedom, Christ’s divine nature and Christ’s human nature, the natural and the supernatural, respectively, as two disconnected facts, when perhaps deeper insight would see but one. Astronomy has its centripetal and centrifugal forces, yet they are doubtless one force. The child cannot hold two oranges at once in its little hand. Negro preacher: “You can’t carry two watermelons under one arm.” Shakespeare, Anthony and Cleopatra, 1:2 — “In nature’s infinite book of secrecy, A little I can read.” Cooke, Credentials of Science — “Man’s progress in knowledge has been so constantly and rapidly accelerated that more has been gained during the lifetime of men still living than during all Human history before.” And yet we may say with D’Arcy, Idealism and Theology, 248 — “man’s position in the universe is eccentric. God alone is at the center. To him alone is the orbit of truth completely displayed...There are circumstances in which, to us the onward movement of truth may seem a retrogression.” William Watson, Collected Poems, 271 — “Think not thy wisdom can illume away The ancient tanglement of night and day. Enough to acknowledge both, and both revere: They see not clearest who see all things clear.”

    3. In the inadequacy of language . Since language is the medium through which truth is expressed and formulated, the invention of a proper terminology in theology, as in every other science, is a condition and criterion of its progress. The Scripture recognize a peculiar difficulty in putting spiritual truths into earthly language ( <460213>1 Corinthians 2:13;

      <470306>2 Corinthians 3:6; 12:4).

      <460213> 1 Corinthians 2:13 — “not in words which man’s wisdom teacheth”; <470306> 2 Corinthians 3:6 — “the letter killeth”; 12:4 — “unspeakable words.” God submits to conditions of revelation; cf.

      <431612> John 16:12 — “I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now.” Language has to be created. Words have to be taken from a common, and to be put to a larger and more sacred, use so that they “stagger under their weight of meaning” — e.g . the word “day” in Genesis 1, and the word ajga>ph in 1 Corinthians 13. See Gould, in Amer. Com., on <461312>1 Corinthians 13:12 — “now we see in a mirror, darkly” — in a metallic mirror whose surface is dim and whose images are obscure = Now we behold Christ, the truth, only as he is reflected in imperfect speech —

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      “but then face to face” = immediately, without the intervention of an imperfect medium. “As fast as we tunnel into the sandbank of thought, the stones of language must be built into walls and arches, to allow further progress into the boundless mine.”

    4. In the incompleteness of our knowledge of the Scriptures . Since it is not the mere letter of the Scriptures that constitute the truth, the progress of theology is dependent upon hermeneutics, or the interpretation of the word of God.

      Notice the progress in commenting, from homiletical to grammatical, historical, dogmatic, illustrated in Scott, Ellicott, Stanley, Lightfoot, John Robinson: “I am Scripture in the light of its origin and connections. There has been an evolution of Scripture, as truly as there has been an evolution of natural science, and the Spirit of Christ who was in the prophets has brought about a progress from verily persuaded that the Lord hath more truth yet to break forth from his holy word.” Recent criticism has shown the necessity of studying each portion of germinal and typical expression to expression that is complete and clear. Yet we still need to offer the prayer of

      <19B918>Psalm 119:18 — “Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law.” On New Testament Interpretation, see

      A.H. Strong, Philosophy and Religion, 324336.

    5. In the silence of written revelation. For our discipline and probation, much is probably hidden from us. Which we might even with our present powers comprehend.

      Instance the silence of Scripture with regard to the life and death of Mary the Virgin, the personal appearance of Jesus and his occupations in early, the origin of evil, the method of the atonement,

      the state after death. So also as to social and political questions, such as slavery, the liquor traffic, domestic virtues, government corruption. “Jesus was in heaven at the revolt of the angels, yet he tells us little about angels or heaven. He does not discourse about Eden, or Adam, or the fall of man, or death as a result of Adam’s sin; and he says little of departed spirits, whether they are lost or saved.” It was better to inculcate principles, and trust his followers to apply them. His gospel is not intended to gratify a vain curiosity. He would not divert men’s minds from pursuing the one thing needful; cf .

      <421323> Luke 13:23, 24 — “Lord, are they few that are saved? And he said unto them, Strive to enter by the narrow door: for many, I say unto you, shall seek to enter in, and shall not be able.” Paul’s silence upon speculative questions, which he must have pondered with absorbing interest is a proof of his divine inspiration. John Foster spent his life,

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      “gathering questions for eternity”; cf. <431307>John 13:7 — “What I do though knowest not now; but thou shalt understand hereafter.” The most beautiful thing in a countenance is that which a picture can never express. He who would speak well must omit well. Story: “of every noble work the silent part is best: If all expressions that which cannot be expressed.” cf . <460209>1 Corinthians 2:9 “Things which eye saw not and ear heard not, And which entered not into the heart of man, Whatsoever things God prepared for them that love him”;

      <052929>Deuteronomy 29:29 — “The secret things belong unto Jehovah our God: but the things that are revealed belong unto us and to our children.” For Luther’s view, see Hagenbach, Hist. Doctrine, 2:338. See also B.D. thomas, The Secret of the Divine Silence.

    6. In the lack of spiritual discernment caused by sin . Since holy affection is a condition of religious knowledge, all moral imperfection in the individual Christian and in the church

    serves as a hindrance to the working out of a complete theology.

    <430303> John 3:3 — “Except one be born anew, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” The spiritual ages make most progress in theology,

    century succeeding the great revival in New England in the time of Jonathon Edwards. Ueberweg, Logic (Lindsay’s transl.), 514 — “Science is much under the influence of the will; and the truth of knowledge depends upon the purity of the conscience. The will has no power to resist scientific evidence; but scientific evidence is not obtained without the continuous loyalty of the will.” Lord Bacon declared that man cannot enter the kingdom of science, any more than he can enter the kingdom of heaven, without becoming a little child. Darwin describes his won mind as having become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts, with the result of producing “atrophy of that part of the brain on

    which the higher tastes depend.” But a similar abnormal atrophy is possible in the case of the moral and religious faculty)see Gore, Incarnation, 37). Dr. Allen said in his Introductory Lecture at Lane theological Seminary: “We are very glad to see you if you wish to be students; but the professors’ chairs are all filled.”


  1. A perfect system of theology is impossible . We do not expect to construct such a system. All science but reflects the present attainment of the human mind. No science is complete or finished. However it may be with the sciences of nature and of man, the science of God will never

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    amount to an exhaustive knowledge. We must not expect to demonstrate all Scripture doctrines upon rational grounds, or even in every case to see the principle of connection between them. Where we cannot do this, we must, as in every other science, set the revealed facts in their places and wait for further light, instead of ignoring or rejecting any of them because we cannot understand them or their relation to other parts of our system.

    Three problems left unsolved by the Egyptians have been handed down to our generation: (1) the duplication of the cube; (2) the trisection of the angle; (3) the quadrature of the circle. Dr. Johnson: “Dictionaries are like watches; the worst is better than none; and the best cannot be expected to go quite true.” Hood spoke of Dr. Johnson’s “Contradictionary,” which had both “interior” and “exterior”. Sir William Thompson (Lord Kelvin) at the fiftieth anniversary of his professorship said: “One word characterizes the most strenuous of the efforts for the advancement of science which I have made perseveringly through fifty five years: that word is failure ; I know no more of electric and magnetic force, or of the relations between ether, electricity and ponderable matter, or of chemical affinity than I knew and tried to teach my students of natural philosophy fifty years ago in my first session as professor.”

    Allen, Religious Progress, mentions three tendencies. “The first says: Destroy the New!. The second says: Destroy the old! The third says: destroy nothing! Let the old gradually and quietly grow into the new, as Erasmus wished. We should accept contradictions, whether they can be intellectually reconciled or not. The truth has never prospered by enforcing some ‘via media.’ Truth lies rather in the union of opposite propositions, as in Christ’s divinity and humanity, and in grace and freedom. Blanco white went from Rome to infidelity; Orestes Brownson from infidelity to Rome; so the brothers John

    Henry Newman and Francis W. Newman, and the brothers George Hervert of Bemerton and Lord Herbert of Cherbury. One would secularize the divine, the other would divinize the secular. But if one is true, so is the other. Let us adopt both. All progress is a deeper penetration into the meaning o old truth, and a larger appropriation of it.”

  2. Theology is nevertheless progressive. It is progressive in the sense that our subjective understanding of the facts with regard to God, and our consequent expositions of these facts, may and do become more perfect. But theology is not progressive in the sense that its objective facts change, either in their number or their nature. With Martineau we may say: “Religion has been reproached without being progressive, it makes amends by being imperishable.” Though our knowledge may be imperfect, it will have great value still. Our success in constructing a theology will depend

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upon the proportion which clearly expressed facts of Scripture bear to mere inferences, and upon the degree in which they all cohere about Christ, the central person and theme.

The progress of theology is progress in apprehension by man, not progress in communication by God. Originally in astronomy is not man’s creation of new planets, but man’s discovery of planets that were never seen before, or the bringing to light of relations between them that were never before suspected. Robert Kerr Eccles: “Originality is a habit of recurring to origins — the habit of securing personal experience by personal application to original facts. It is not an eduction of novelties either from nature, Scripture, or inner consciousness; it is rather the habit of resorting to primitive facts, and of securing the personal experiences which arise from contact with these facts.” Fisher, Nat. and Meth. Of Revelation, 48 — “The starry heavens are now what they were of old; there is no enlargement of the stellar universe, except that which comes through the increased power and use of the telescope.” We must not imitate the green sailor who, when set to steer, said he had “sailed by that star.”

Martineau, Types, 1:492, 493 — “Metaphysics, so far as they are true to their work, are stationary, precisely because they have in charge, not what begins and ceases to be, but what always is... It is absurd to praise motion for always making way, while disparaging space for still being what it ever was: as if the motion you prefer could be, without the space which you reproach.” Newman Smyth, Christian Ethics, 45, 67-70, 79 — “True conservatism is progress which takes directon from the past and fulfills its good; false conservatism is a narrowing and hopeless reversion to the past, which is a betrayal of the promise of the future. So Jesus came not ‘to destroy the law or the prophets’; he ‘came not to destroy, but to fulfill’ ( <400517>Matthew 5:17)...The last book on Christian Ethics will not be written before

Judgment Day.” John Milton, Areopagitica: “Truth is compared in the Scripture to a streaming fountain; if her waters flow not in a perpetual progression, they sicken into a muddy pool of conformity and tradition. A man may be a heretic in the truth.” Paul in

<450216>Romans 2:16, and in <540208>1 Timothy 2:8 — speaks of “my gospel.” It is the duty of every Christian to have his own conception of the truth, while he respects the conceptions of others. Tennyson, Locksley Hall: “I that rather held it better men should perish one by one, Than that earth should stand at gaze like Joshua’s moon at Ajalon.” We do not expect any new worlds, and we need not expect any new Scriptures; but we may expect progress in the interpretation of both. Facts are final, but interpretation is not.

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    The requisites to the successful study of theology have already in part been indicated in speaking of its limitations. In spite of some repetition, however, we mention the following:

    1. A disciplined mind . Only such a mind can patiently collect the facts, hold in its grasp may facts at once, educe by continuous reflection their connecting principles, suspend final judgment until its conclusions are verified by Scripture and experience.

      Robert Browning, Ring and Book, 175 (Pope, 228) — “Truth nowhere lies, yet everywhere, in these; Not absolutely in a portion, yet Evolveable from the whole: evolved at last Painfully; held tenaciously by me.” Teachers and students may be divided into two classes:

      1. those who know enough already;

      2. those wish to learn more than they now know. Motto of Winchester School in England: “Disce, aut discede.” Butcher, Greek Genius., 213, 230 — “The Sophists fancied that they were imparting education, when they were only imparting results. Aristotle illustrates their method by the example of a shoemaker who, professing to teach the art of making painless shoes, puts into the apprentice’s hand a large assortment of shoes ready made. A witty Frenchman classes

        together those who would make science popular, metaphysics intelligible, and vice respectable. The word sco>lh which first meant ‘leisure,’ then ‘philosophical discussion,’ and finally ‘school’ shows the pure love of learning among the Greeks.” Robert G. Ingersoll said that the average provincial clergyman is alike the land of the upper Potomas spoken of by Tom Randolph, as almost worthless in its original state, and rendered wholly so by cultivation. Lotze, Metaphysics, 1:16 — “the constant whetting of the knife is tedious, if it is not proposed to cut anything with it.” “To do their duty is their only holiday,” is the description of Athenian character given by Thucydides. Chitty asked a father inquiring as to his son’s qualifications for the law: “Can your son eat sawdust without any butter?” on opportunities for

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        culture in the Christian ministry, see New Englander, Oct 1875: A. H. Strong, Philosophy and Religion, 273-275; Christ in Creation, 318- 320.

    2. An intuitional as distinguished from a merely logical habit of mind , — or, trust in the mind’s primitive convictions, as well as in its processes of reasoning. The theologian must have insight as well as understanding. He must accustom himself to ponder spiritual facts as well as those which are sensible and material; to see things in their inner relations as well as in their outward forms; to cherish confidence in the reality and the unity of truth.

      Vinet, Outlines of Philosyphy, 39,40 — “If I do not feel that good is good, who will ever prove it to me?” Pascal: Logic, which is an abstraction, may shake everything. A being purely intellectual will be incurably skeptical.” Calvin: “Satan is an acute theologian.” Some men can see a fly on a barn door a mile away, and yet can never see the door. Zellar, Outline of Greek Philosophy, 93 — “Gorgias the Sophist was able to show metaphysically that nothing can exist: that what does exist cannot be known by us; and that what is known by us cannot be imparted to others” (quoted by Wenley, Socrates and Christ, 28). Aristotle differed from those moderate men who thought it impossible to go over the same river twice, — he held that it could not be done even once ( cf. Wordsworth, Prelude, 536). Dove, Logic of the Christian Faith, 1-20, and especially 25, gives a demonstration of the impossibility of motion: A thing cannot move in the place where it is; it cannot move in the places where it is not; but the place where it is and the places where it is not are aD the places that there are; therefore a thing cannot move m all. Hazard, Man a Creative First Cause, 100, shows that the bottom of a wheel duos not move, since it goes backward as fast as the top goes forward. An

      instantaneous photograph makes the upper part a confused blur, while the spokes of the lower part are distinctly visible. Abp. Whately: “Weak arguments are often thrust before my path; but, although they are most unsubstantial, it is not easy to destroy them. Shore is not a more difficult feat known than to cut through a cushion with a sword” cf . <540620>1 Timothy 6:20 — “oppositions of mime knowledge which is falsely so called”; 3:2 — “the bishop therefore must be... sober-minded” — sw>frwn = “well balanced.” The Scripture speaks of “sound [ uJgih>v = healthful] doctrine”( <540111>1 Timothy 1:11). Contrast <540604>1 Timothy 6:4 — [ nosw~n = ailing] “diseased about questionings and disputes of words”.

    3. An acquaintance with physical, mental, and moral science. The method of conceiving and expressing Scripture truth is so affected by our elementary notions of these sciences, and the weapons with which theology

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      is attached and defended are so commonly drawn from them as arsenals, that the student cannot afford to be ignorant of them.

      Goethe explains his own greatness by his avoidance of metaphysics: “Mein Kind, Ich habe es klug gemacht; lob habe nie uber’s Denken gedacht” — “I have been wise in never thinking about thinking”; he would have been wiser, had he pondered more deeply the fundamental principles of his philosophy; see A. H. Strong, The Great Poets and their Theology 296-299 and Philosophy and Religion, 1-18; also in Baptist Quarterly, 2:393 sq. Many a theological system has fallen, like the Campanile at Venice, because its foundations were insecure. Sir William Hamilton: “No difficulty arises in theology which has not first emerged in philosophy.”

      N. W. Taylor: “Give me a young man in metaphysics, and I care not who has him in theology.” President Samson Talbot “I love metaphysics, because they have to do with realities.” The maxim “Ubi tres medici, ibi duo athei,” witnesses to the truth of Galen’s words: a]ristov iJatro<v kai< filo>sofov ; “the best physician is also a philosopher.” Theology cannot dispense with science, any more than science can dispense with philosophy. E. G. Robinson: “Science has not invalidated any fundamental truth of revelation, though it has modified the statement of many...Physical Science will undoubtedly knock some of our crockery gods on the head, and the sooner the better” There is great advantage to the preacher in taking up, as did Frederick W. Robertson, one science after another. Chemistry entered into his mental structure, as he said, “like iron into the blood.”

    4. A knowledge of the original languages of the Bible. This is necessary to enable us not only to determine the meaning of the fundamental terms of scripture, such as holiness, sin, propitiation, justification, but also to interpret statements of doctrine by their connections with the context

      Emerson said that the man who reads a book in a strange tongue, when he can have a good translation, is a fool. Dr. Behrends replied that he is a fool who is satisfied with the substitute. E. G. Robinson: “Language is a great organism, and no study so disciplines the mind as the dissection of an organism.” Chrysostom: “This is the cause of all our evils — our not knowing the Scriptures.” Yet a modern scholar has said: “The Bible is the most dangerous of all God’s gifts to man” It is possible to adore the letter, while we fail to perceive its spirit. A narrow interpretation may contradict its meaning. Much depends upon connecting phrases, as for example, the dia< tou~to and ejf w=| in <450512>Romans 5:12. Professor Phillip Lindsley of Princeton, 1813-1853, said to his pupils: “One of the best preparations

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      for death is a thorough knowledge of the Greek grammar.” The youthful Erasmus; “When I get some money, I will get me some Greek books, and, after that, some clothes.” The dead languages are the only really living ones — free from danger of misunderstanding from changing usage. Divine Providence has put revelation into fixed forms in the Hebrew and the Greek. Sir William Hamilton, Discussions, 330 — “To be a competent divine is in fact to be a scholar.” On the true idea of a Theological Seminary Course, See A.

      H. Strong, Philos. And Religion, 302-313.

    5. A holy affection toward God . Only the renewed heart can properly feel its need of divine revelation, or understand that revelation when given.

      <192514> Psalm 25:14 — “The secret of Jehovah is with them that fear him”;

      <451202> Romans 12:2 — “prove hat is the...will of God”; cf .

      <193601>Psalm 36:1 — “the transgression of the wicked speaks in his heart like an oracle.” It is the heart and not the brain that to the highest doth attain.” To “learn by heart” is something more than to learn by mind, or by head. All heterodoxy is preceded by heteropraxy. In Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress, Faithful does not go through the Slough of Despond, as Christian did; and it is by getting over the fence to find an easier road that Christian and Hopeful get into Doubting Castle and the hands of Gianht Despair. “Great thoughts come from the heart,” said Vauvenargues. The preacher cannot, like Dr. Kane, kindle fire with a lens of ice. Aristotle: “The power of attaining moral truth is dependent upon our acting rightly.” Pascal: “We know truth, not only by the reason, but by the heart...The heart has its reasons, which the reason knows nothing of.” Hobbes: “Even the axioms of geometry would be disputed, if men’s passions

      were concerned in them.” Macaulay: “The law of gravitation would still be controverted, if it interfered with vested interests.” Nordau, Degeneracy: “Philosophic systems simply furnish the excuses reason demands for the unconscious impulses of the race during a given period of time.”

      Lord Bacon: “A Tortoise on the right path will beat a racer on the wrong path.” Goethe: “As are the inclinations, so also are the opinions...A work of art can be comprehended by the head only with the assistance of the heart...Only law can give us liberty.” Gichte: “Our system of thought is very often only the history of our heart... Truth is descended from conscience...Men do not will according to their reason, but they reason according to their will.” Neander’s motto was: “Pectus est quod theologum facit” — “It is the heart that makes the theologian.” John Stirling: “That is a dreadful eye which can be divided from a living human heavenly heart and still retain its all penetrating vision, such was the eye

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      of the Gorgons.” But such an eye, we add, is not all penetrating. E. G. Robinson: “Never study theology in cold blood.” W. C. Wilkinson: “The head is a magnetic needle with truth for its pole. But the heart is a hidden mass of magnetic iron. The head is drawn somewhat toward its natural pole, the truth; but more it is drawn by that nearer magnetism.” See an affecting instance of Thomas Carlyle’s enlightenment, after the death of his wife, as to the meaning of the Lord’s Prayer, in Fisher, Nat. and Meth. Of Revelation, 165. On the importance of feeling, in association of ideas, see Dewey,. Psychology, 106, 107.

    6. The enlightening influence of the Holy Spirit . As only the Spirit fathoms the things of God, so only he can illuminate our minds to apprehend them.

    <460211> 1 Corinthians 2:11,12 — “The things of God none knoweth, save the Spirit of God. But we received...the Spirit which is from God, that we might know.” Cicero, Nat. Deorum, 66 — “Nemo igitur vir magnus sine aliquo adflatu divino unquam fuit.” Professor Beck of Tubingen: “For the student, there is no privileged path leading to the truth; the only one which leads to it is also that of the unlearned; it is that of regeneration and of gradual illumination by the Holy Spirit; and without the Holy Spirit, theology is not only a cold stone, it is a deadly poison.” As all the truths of the differential and integral calculus are wrapped up in the simplest mathematical aciom, so all theology is wrapped up in the declaration that God is holiness and love, or in the protegangeluim uttered at the gates of Eden. But dull minds cannot of themselves evolve the calculus from the axiom, no can sinful hearts evolve theology from the first prophecy. Teachers are needed to demonstrate geometrical theorems, and the Holy Spirit is needed to show us that the “new commandment” illustrated by the death of Christ is only an “old commandment which ye had from the

    beginning” ( <620207>1 John 2:7). The Principia of Newton is a revelation of Christ, and so are the Scriptures. The Holy Spirit enables us to enter into the meaning of Christ’s revelations in both Scripture and nature; to interpret the one by the other; and so to work out original demonstrations and applications of the truth;

    <401352>Matthew 13:52 — “Therefore every scribe who hath been made a disciple of the kingdom of heaven is like unto a man that is a householder, who bringeth forth out of his treasure things new and old.” See Adolph Monod’s sermons on Christ’s Temptation, addressed to the theological students of Montauban, in Select Sermons from the French and German, 117-179.

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    Theology is commonly divided into Biblical, Historical, Systematic and Practical.

    1. Biblical theology aims to arrange and classify the facts of revelation, confining itself to the Scriptures for its material, and treating of doctrine only so far as it was developed at the close of the apostolic age.

      Instance DeWette,Biblische Theologie; Hofmann, Schriftbeweis; Nitzsch, System of Christian Doctrine. The last, however, has more of the philosophical element that properly belongs to Biblical Theology. The third volume of Ritschl’s Justification and Reconciliation is intended as a system of Biblical theology, the first and second volumes being little more than an historical introduction. But metaphysics, of a Kantian relativity and phenomenalism, enter so largely into Ritschl’s estimates and interpretations, as to render his conclusions both partial and rationalistic. Notice a questionable use of the term Biblical Theology to designate the theology of a part of Scripture severed from the rest, as Steudel’s Biblical theology of the Old Testament; Schmidt’s Biblical Theology of the New Testament; and in the common phrases; Biblical Theology of Christ, or of Paul. These phrases are objectionable as intimating that the books of Scripture have only a human origin. Upon the assumption that there is no common divine authorship of Scripture, Biblical theology is conceived of as a series of fragments, corresponding to the differing teachings of the various prophets and apostles, and the theology of Paul is held to be an unwarranted and incongruous addition to the theology of Jesus. Se Reuss, history of Christian Theology in the Apostolic Age.

    2. Historical Theology traces the development of the Biblical doctrines from the time of the apostles to the present day, and gives account of the results of this development in the life of the church.

      By doctrinal development we mean the progressive unfolding and apprehension, by the church, of the truth explicitly or implicitly contained in Scripture. As giving account of the shaping of the Christian faith into doctrinal statements. Historical Theology is called the History of Doctrine. As describing the resulting and accompanying changes in the life of the church, outward and inward, Historical Theology is called Church History. Instance Cunningham’s Historical Theology; Hagenbach’s and Shedd’s History of Christian Doctrine has been called “The History of Dr. Shedd’s Christian Doctrine.” But if Dr. Shedd’s Augustinianism colors his History, Dr. Sheldon’s Arminianism also colors

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      his. G. P. Fisher’s History oif Christian Doctrine is unusually lucid and impartial. See Neander’s Introduction and Shedd’s Philosophy of History.

    3. Systematic Theology takes the material furnished by Biblical and by Historical Theology, and with this material seeks to build up into an organic and consistent whole all our knowledge of God and of the relations as between God and the universe, whether this knowledge be originally derived from nature or from the Scriptures.

      Systematic Theology is therefore theology proper, of which Biblical and Historical Theology are the incomplete and preparatory stages. Systematic Theology is to be clearly distinguished from Dogmatic Theology/ Dogmatic theology is, in strict usage, the systematizing of the doctrines expressed in the symbols of the church, together with the grounding of these in the Scriptures, and the exhibition, so far as may be, of their rational necessity. Systematic Theology begins, on the other hand, not with the symbols, but with the Scriptures. It asks first, not what the church has believed, but what is the truth of God’s revealed word. It examines that word with all the aids which nature and the Spirit have given it, using Biblical and Historical Theology as its servants and helpers, but not as its masters. Notice here the technical use of the word “symbol,” from sumba>llw = a brief throwing together, or condensed statement of the essentials of Christian doctrine. Synonyms are: Confession, creed, consensus, declaration, formulary, canons, articles of faith.

      Dogmatism argues to foregone conclusions. The word is not, however, derived from “dog,” as Douglas Jerrold facetiously suggested, when he said that “dogmatism is puppyism full grown,” but from doke>w , to think, to opine. Dogmatic Theology has two

      principles: (1) The absolute authority of creeds, as decisions of the church: (2) The application to these creeds of formal logic, for the purpose of demonstrating their truth to the understanding. In the Roman Catholic Church, not the Scripture but the church, and the dogma given by it, is the decisive authority. The Protestant principle, on the contrary, is that Scripture decides, and that dogma is to be judged by it. Following Schleiermacher, Al. Schweizer thinks that the term “Dogmatik” should be discarded as essentially unprotestant, and that “Glaubenslehre” should take its place; and Harnack, Hist. Dogma 6, remarks that “Dogma has ever in the progress of history, devoured its own progenitors.” While it is true that every new and advanced thinker in theology has been counted a heretic, there has always been a common faith “the faith which my heavenly Father planted not, shall be rooted up. Let them alone; they are blind guides”

      = there is

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      truth planted by God, and it has permanent divine life. Human errors have no permanent vitality and they perish of themselves. See Karftan, Dogmatik 2, 3.

    4. Practical Theology is the system of truth considered as a means of renewing and sanctifying men, or, in other words, theology in its publication and enforcement.

    To this department of theology belong Homiletics and Pastoral Theology, since these are but scientific presentations of the right methods of unfolding Christian truth, and of bringing it to bear upon men individually and in the church. See Van Oosterzee, Practical Theology; T. Harwood Pattison, The Making of the Sermon, and Public Prayer; Yale Lectures on Preaching by H. W. Beecher, R. W. Dale, Phillips Brooks, E. G. Robinson, A. J. P. Behrends, John Watson, and others; and the work on Pastoral Theology, by Harvey.

    It is sometimes asserted that there are other departments of theology not Included In those above mentioned. But most of these, if not all, belong to other spheres of research, and cannot properly be classed under theology at all. Moral Theology, so called, or the science of Christian morals, ethics, or theological ethics, is Indeed the proper result of theology, but is not to be confounded with it. Speculative theology, so called, respecting, as it does, such truth as is mere matter of opinion, is either extra- scriptural, and so belongs to the province of the philosophy of religion, or is an attempt to explain truth already revealed, and so falls within the province of Systematic Theology. “Speculative theology starts from certain a priori principles, and from them undertakes to determine what is and must be. It deduces its scheme of doctrine from the laws of mind or from axioms supposed to be inwrought into its constitution.” Bibliotheca Sacra, 3852:376 — “Speculative theology tries to show that the dogmas agree with the

    laws of thought, while the philosophy of religion tries to show that the laws of thought agree with the dogmas.” Theological Encyclopædia (the word signifies “instruction in a circle “) is a general introduction to all the divisions of Theology, together with an account of the relations between them. Hegel’s Encyclopædia was an attempted exhibition of the principles and connections of all the sciences. See Crooks and Hurst, Theological Encyclopædia and Methodology; Zockler, Handb. der theol. Wissenschaften, 2:606-790.

    The relations of theology to science and philosophy have been variously stated, but by none better than by H. B. Smith, Faith and Philosophy, 38 — “Philosophy is a mode of human knowledge — not the whole of that

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    knowledge, but a mode of it — the knowing of things rationally.” Science asks; “What do I know?” Philosophy asks; “What can I know ?” William James, Psychology, 1:145 — “Metaphysics means nothing but an unusually obstinate effort to think clearly.” Aristotle: “The particular sciences are toiling workmen, while philosophy is the architect. The workmen are slaves, existing for the free master. So philosophy rules the sciences.” With regard to philosophy and science Lord Bacon remarks: “Those who have handled knowledge have been too much either men of mere observation or abstract reasoners. ‘The former are like the ant: they only collect material and put it to immediate use. The abstract reasoners are like spiders, who make cobwebs out of their own substance. But the bee takes a middle course: it gathers its material from the flowers of the garden and the field, while it transforms and digests what it gathers by a power of its own. Not unlike this is the work of the philosopher” Novalis: “Philosophy can bake no bread; but it can give us God, freedom and immortality.” Prof. DeWitt of Princeton; “Science, philosophy, and theology are the three great modes of organizing the universe into an intellectual system. Science never goes below second causes; if it does, if it does it is no longer science, — it becomes philosophy. Philosophy views the universe as a unity, and the goal it is always seeking to reach is the source and center of this unity — the Absolute, the First Cause. This goal of philosophy is the point of departure for theology. What philosophy is striving to find, theology asserts has been found. Theology therefore starts with the Absolute, the First Cause.” W. N. Clarke, Christian Theology, 48 — “Science examines and classifies facts; philosophy inquires concerning

    spiritual meanings. Science seeks to know the universe; philosophy to understand it.”

    Balfour, Foundations of Belief, 7 — “Natural science has for its subject matter things and events. Philosophy is the systematic exhibition of the grounds of our knowledge. Metaphysics is our

    knowledge respecting realities which are not phenomenal , e. g., God and the soul.” Knight, Wssays in Philosophy, 81 — “The aim of the sciences is increase of knowledge, by tthe discovery of laws within which all phenomena may be embraced and by means of which they may be explained. The aim of transcending them. Its sphere is substance and essence.” Bowne, Theory of Thought and Knowledge, 3-5 — “Philosophy = doctrine of knowledge (is mind passive or active in knowing? — Epistemology) + doctrine of being (is fundamental being mechanical and unintelligent, or purposive and intelligent? — Metaphysics). The systems of Locke, Hume, and Kant are preeminently theories of knowing; the systems of Spinoza and Leibnitz are preeminently theories of being. Historically theories of being come

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    first, because the object is the only determinant for reflective thought. But the instrument of philosophy is thought itself. First then, we must study Logic o, or the theory of thought; secondly, Epistemology, or the theory of knowledge; thirdly, Metaphysics, or the theory of being.”

    Professor George M. Forbes on the New Psycology: “Locke and Kant represent the two tendencies in philosophy — the emperical, physical, scientific, on the cone hand, and the rational, metaphysical, logical on the other. Locke furnishes the basis for the associational schemes of Hartley, the Mills, and Bain; Kant for the idealistic scheme of Fichte, Schelling, and Hegel. The two are not contradictory, but complementary, and the Scotch Reid and Hamilton combine them both, reacting against the extreme empiricism and skepticism of Hume. Hickok, Porter, and McCosh represented the Scotch school in America. It was exclusively an; analytical its psychology was the faculty-psychology; it represented the mind as a bundle of faculties. The unitary philosophy of T. H. Green, Edward Caird, in Great Britain, and in America, of W. T. Harris, George

    S. Morris, and John Dewey, was a reaction against this faculty- psychology, under the influence of Hegel. A second reaction under the influence of the Herbartian doctrine of apperception substituted function for faculty, making all the processes phases of apperception.

    G. F. Stout and J. Mark Baldwin represent this psychology. A third reaction comes from the influence of physical science. All attempts to unify are relegated to a metaphysical Hades. There is nothing but states and processes. The only unity is the laws of their coexistence and succession. There is nothing a priori . Wundt identifies apperception with will, and regards it as the unitary principle. Kulpe and Titchener find no self, or will, or soul, but treat these as inferences little warranted. Their psychology is psychology without a soul. The old psychology was exclusively static , while the new emphasizes the genetic point of view. Growth and development are

    the leading ideas of Herbert Spencer, Preyer, Tracy and Stanley Hall. William James is explanatory, while Gorge T. Ladd is descriptive. Cattell, Scripture, and Musterberg apply the methods of Fechner, and the Psychological Review is their organ. Their error is in their negative attitude. The old psychology is needed to supplement the new. It has greater scope and more practical significance.” On the relation of theology to philosophy and to science, see Luthardt, Compend. Der Dogmatik,4; Hagenbach, Encyclodædie, 109.

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    1. In the Eastern Church, Systematic theology may be said to have had its beginning and end in John of Damascus (700-760).

      Ignatius (115 — Ad Trall., c. 9) gives us “the first distinct statement of the faith drawn up in a series of propositions. This sytematizing formed the basis of all later efforts” (Prof. A. H. Newman). Origen of Alexandria (186-254) wrote his Peri< Arcw~n Athanasius of Alexandria (300-373) his Treatises on the Trinity and the Deity of Christ; and Gregory of Nyssa in Cappadocia (332-398) his Lo>gov kathchtiko<v oJ me>gav . Hatch, Hibbert Lectures, 323, regards the “De Principiis” of Origen as the “first complete system of dogma,” and speaks of Origen as “the disciple of Clement of Alexandria, the first great teacher of philosophical Christianity.” But while the Fathers just mentioned seem to have conceived the plan of expounding the doctrines in order and of showing their relation to one another, it was John of Damascus (700-760) who first actually carried out such a plan, His Ekdosiv ajkribh<v th~v

      orjqodo>xou Pi>stewv , or summary of the Orthodox Faith, may be considered the earliest work of Systematic Theology. Neander call it “the most important doctrinal textbook of the Greek Church.” John, like the Greek Church in general, was speculative, theological, semi-pelagian, sacramentarian. The Apostles’ Creed, so called, is, in its present form, not earlier than the fifth century; see Schaff, Creeds of Christendom, 1:19. Mr. Gladstone suggested that the Apostles’ Creed was a development of the baptismal formula. McGiffert, Apostles’ Creed, assigns to the meager original form a date of the third

      quarter of the second century, and regards the Roman origin of the symbol as proved. It was framed as a baptismal formula, but specifically in opposition to the teachings of Marcion, which were at that time causing much trouble at Rome. Harnack however dates the original Apostles’ Creed at 150, and Zahn places it at 120. See also J. C. Long, in Bap. Quar. Rev., 1892:89-101.

    2. In the Western Church , we may (with Hagenbach) distinguish three periods:

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    1. The period of Scholasticism, — introduced by Peter Lombard (1100-

      1600), and reaching its culmination in Thomas Aquinas (1221- 1274) and Duns Scotus (1265-1308).

      Though Systematic Theology had its beginning in the Eastern Church, its development has been confined almost wholly to the Western. Augustine (353-430) wrote his “Encheiridion ad Laurentium” and his “De CivtateDei,” and John Scotus Erigena (850), Roscelin (1092-1122), and Abelard (1079-1142), in their attempts at the rational explanation of the Christian doctrine foreshadowed the works of the great scholastic teachers. Anselm of Canterbury (1034-1109), with his “Proslogion de Dei Existentia” and his “Cur Deus Homo,” has sometimes, but wrongly, been called the founder of Scholasticism. Allen, in his Continuity of Christian Thought, represents the transcendence of God as the controlling principle of the augustinian and of the Western theology. The Eastern Church, he maintains, had founded its theology on God’s immanence. Paine, in his Evolution of Trinitarianism, shows that this erroneous. Augustine was a theistic monist. He declares that “dei voluntas rerumnatura est,” and regards God’s upholding as a continuous creation. Western theology recognized the immanence of God as well as his transcendence.

      Peter Lombard, however, (1100-1160), the “magister sententiaurm,” was the first great systematizer of the Western Church, and his “Libri Sententiaurm Quatuor” was the theological textbook of the Middle Ages. Teachers lectured on the “Sentences” ( Sententi a = sentence, Satz, locus , point, article of faith), as they did on the books of Aristotle, who furnished to Scholasticism its impulse and guide. Every doctrine was treated in the order of Aristotle’s four causes: the material, the formal, the efficient, the final. (“Cause” here = requisite:

      1. matter of which a thing consists , e.g ., bricks and motar;

      2. form it assumes , e.g ., plan or design;

      3. producing agent, e g ., builder;

      4. end for which mad, e.g ., house.)

        The organization of physical as well as of theological science was due to Aristofle. Danste called him “the master of those who know.” James Ten Broeke, Bap. Quar. Rev., Jan. 1892; 1-26 — “The Revival of Learning showed the world that the real Aristotle was much broader than the Scholastic Aristotle — information very unwelcome to the Roman Church.” For the influence of Scholasticism, compare the literary methods of Augustine and of Calvin, — the former giving us his materials in disorder, like soldiers bivouacked for the night; the latter arranging them

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        like these same soldiers drawn up in battle array; see A. H. Strong, Philosopisy and Religion, 4, and Christ in Creation, 188. 189.

        Candhish, art.: Dogmatic, in Encycl. Brit., 7:540 — “By and by a mighty intellectual force took held of the whole collected dogmatic material, and reared out of it the great scholastic systems, which have been compared to the grand Gothic cathedrals that wore the work of the same ages.” Thomas Aquinas 1221-1274), the Dominican, “doctor angelicus,” Augustinian and Realist, — and Duns Scotus (1265-1308), the Franciscan, “doctor subtilis,” — wrought out the scholastic theology more fully, and left behind them, in their Summa, gigantic monuments of intellectual industry and acumen. Scholasticism aimed at the proof and systematizing of the doctrines of the Church by means of Aristotle’s philosophy. It became at last an illimitable morass of useless subtleties and abstractions, and it finally ended in the nominalistic skepticism of William of Occam (1270-1347). See Townsend, The Great Schoolmen of the Middle Ages.

    2. The period of Symbolism, — represented by the Lutheran theology of Philip Melanchthon (1497-1560), and the Reformed theology of John Calvin (1509-1564); the former connecting itself with the Analytic theology of Calixtus (1585-1656), and the latter with the Federal theology of Cocceius (1603-1669).

      The Lutheran Theology . — Preachers precede theologians, and Luther (1485-1546) was preacher rather than theologian. But Melanchthon (1497-1560), “the preceptor of Germany,” as he was called, embodied the theology of the Lutheran church in his “Loci Communes” = points of doctrine common to believers (first edition Augustinian, afterwards substantially Arminian; grew out of lectures on the Epistle to the Romans). He was followed by Chemnitz (1522-

      1586), “clear and accurate,” the most learned of the disciples of Melanchthon. Leonhard Hutter (1563-1616), called “Lutherus redivivus,” and John Gerhard (1582-1637) followed Luther rather than Melanchthson. “Fifty years after the death of Melanchthon, Leonhard Hutter, his successor in the chair of theology at Wittenberg, on an occasion when the authority of Melanchthon was appealed to, tore down from the wall the portrait of the great Reformer, and trampled it under foot in the presence of the assemblage” (E. D. Morris, paper at the 60th Anniversary of Lane Seminary).. George Calixtus (1586-1656) followed Melanchthon rather than Luther. He taught a theology which recognized the good element in both the Reformed and the Romanist doctrine and which was called “Syncretism.” He separated Ethics freno Systematic ‘Theology, and

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      applied the analytical method of investigation to the latter, beginning with the end, or final cause, of all things, viz.: blessedness. he was followed in his analytic method by Dannhauer (1603-1666), who treated theology allegorically, Calovius (1612-1686), “the most uncompromising defender of Lutheran orthodoxy and the most drastic polemicist against Calixtus,” Quenstedt (1617-1688), whom Hovey calls “learned, comprehensive and logical,” and Hollaz (1730). The Lutheran theology aimed to purify the existing church, maintaining that what is not against the gospel is for it. It emphasized the material principle of the Reformation, justification by faith; but it retained many Romanist customs not expressly forbidden in Scripture. Kaftan, Am. Jour. Theol., 1900:716 — “Because the medieval school philosophy mainly held sway, the Protestant theology representing the new faith was meanwhile necessarily accommodated to forms of knowledge thereby conditioned, that is, to forms essentially Catholic.”

      The Reformed Theology . — The word “Reformed” is here used in its technical sense, as designating that phase of the new theology which originated in Switzerland. Zwingle, the Swiss reformer (1484- 1531), differing from Luther as to the Lord’s Supper and as to Scripture, was more than Luther entitled to the name of systematic theologian. Certain writings of his may be considered the beginning of Reformed theology. But, it was left to John Calvin (1109-1564), after the death of Zwingle, to arrange the principles of that theology in systematic form. Calvin dug channels for Zwingle’s flood be flow in, as Melanchthon did for Luther’s. His Institutes (“Institutio Religionis Christianæ”), is one of the great works in theology (superior as a systematic work to Melanchthon’s “Loci”). Calvin was followed by Peter Martyr (1500-1562), Chamier (1565-1621), and Theodore Beza (1519-1605). Beza carried Calvin’s doctrine of predestination to an extreme supralapsarianism, which is hyper- Calvanistic rather that Calvinistic. Cocceius (1603-1669), and after

      him Witsius (1626-1708), made theology center about the idea of the covenants, and founded the Federal theology. Leydecker (1642-1721) treated theology in the order of the persons of the trinity. Amyraldus (1596-1664) and Placeus of Saumur (1596-1632) modified the Calvanistic doctrine, the latter by his theory of mediate imputation, and the former by advocating the hypothetic universalism of divine grace. Turretin (1671-1737), a clear and strong theologian whose work is still a textbook at Princeton, and Pictet (1655-1725), both of them Federalists, showed the influence of the Cartesian philosophy. The Reformed theology aimed to build a new church, affirming that what is not derived from the Bible is against it. It emphasized the formal principle of the Reformation, the sole authority of Scripture.

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      In general, while the line between Catholic and Protestant in Europe runs from west to east, the line between Lutheran and Reformed runs from south to north, the Reformed theology flowing with the current of the Rhine northward from Switzerland to Holland and to England, in which latter country the Thirty-nine Articles represent the Reformed faith, while the Prayerbook of the English Church is substantially Arminian; see Dorner, Gesch, prot. Theologie, Einleit.,

      9. On the difference between Lutheran and Reformed doctrine, see Schaff, Germany, its Universities, Theology and Religion, 167-177. On the Reformed Churches of Europe and America, see H. B. Smith, Faith and Philosophy, 87-124.

    3. The period of Criticism and Speculation, — in its three divisions: the Rationalistic, represented by Semler (1725-1791); the Transitional, by Schleiermacher (1768-1834); the Evangelical, by Nitzsch, Muller, Tholuck and Dorner.

    First Division . Rationalistic theologies: Though the Reformation had freed theology in great part from the bonds of scholasticism, other philosophies after a time took its place. The Leibnitz — (1646-1754) Wolffian (1679-1754) exaggeration of the powers of natural religion prepared the way for rationalistic systems of theology. Buddeus (1667-

    1729) combated the new principles, but Semler’s (1725-1791) theology was built upon them, and represented the Scriptures as having a merely local and temporary character. Michaelis (1716- 1784) and Deoderlein (1714-1789) followed Semler, and the tendency toward rationalism was greatly assisted by the critical philosophy of Kant (1724-1804), to whom “revelation” was problematical, and positive religion merely the medium through which the practical truths of reason are communicated” (Hagenbach, Hist. Doct., 2:397). Ammon (1766-1850) and Wegscheider (1771-

    1848) were the representatives of the philosophy, Daub, Marheinecke and Strauss (1808-1874) were the Hegelian dogmatists. The system of Strauss resembled “Christian theology as a cemetery resembles a town.” Storr (1746-1805), Reinhard (1753-1812), and Knapp (1753- 1825), in the main evangelical, endeavored to reconcile revelation with reason, but were more or less influenced by this rationalizing spirit. Bretschneider (1776-1828) and De Wette (1780-1819) may be said to have held middle ground.

    Second Division . Transition to a more Scriptural theology. Herder (1744-

    1803) and Jacobi (1743-1819), by their more spiritual philosophy,

    prepared the way for Schleiermacher’s (1768-1834) grounding of doctrine in the facts of Christina experience. The writings of Schleiermacher

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    constituted an epoch, and had great influence in delivering Germany from the rationalistic toils into which it had fallen. We may now speak of a

    Third division — and in this division we may put the names of Neander and Tholuck, Twesten and Nitzsch, Muller and Luthhardt, Dorner and Phillippi, Ebrard and Thomasius, Lange and Kahnis, all of them exponets of a far more pure and evangelical theology than was common in Germany a century ago. Two new forms of rationalism, however, have appeared in Germany, the one based upon the philosophy of Hegel, and numbering among its adherents Strauss and Baur, Biedermann, Lipsius and Pfleiderer; the other based upon the philosophy of Kant, and advocated by Ritschl and his followers, Harnack, Hermann and Kaftan; the former emphasizing the ideal Christ, the latter emphasizing the historical Christ; but neither of the two fully recognizing the living Christ present in every believer (see Johnson’s Cyclopædia, art., Theology, By

    A. H. Strong).

    1. Among theologians of views diverse from the prevailing Protestant faith, may be mentioned:

      1. Bellarmine (1542-1621), the Roman Catholic.

        Besides Bellarmine, “the best controversial writer of his age” (Bayle), the Roman Catholic Church numbers among its noted modern theologians; — Petavius (1583-1682). whose dogmatic theology Gibbon calls “a work of incredible labor and compass”. Melchior Canus (1523-1560), an opponent of the Jesuits and their scholastic method; Bossuet (1627-1704), who idealized Catholicism in his Exposition of Doctrine, and attacked Protestantism in his History of Variations of Protestant Churches; Jansen (1585-1638),

        who attempted, in opposition to the Jesuits, to reproduce the theology of Augustine, and who had in this the powerful assistance of Pascal (1623-1662). Jansenism, so far as the doctrines of grace are concerned, but not as respects the sacraments is virtual Protestantism within the Roman Catholic Church. Moehler’s Symbolism, Perrone’s “Prelectiones Theologiæ,” and Hurter’s “Compendium Theologiæ Dogmaticæ” are the latest and most approved expositions of Roman Catholic doctrine.

      2. Arminius (1560-1609), the opponent of predestination.

        Among the followers of Arminius (1560-1609) must be reckoned Episcopius (l583-1643), who carried Arminianism to almost Pelagian extremes; Hugo Grotius (1513-1645), the jurist and statesman, author of

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        the governmental theory of the atonement; and Limborch (1633- 1712), the most thorough expositor of the Arminian doctrine.

      3. Laelius Socinus (1525-1562), and Faustus Socinus (1539- 1604), the leaders of the modern Unitarian movement.

      The works of Laelius Socinus (1525-1562) and his nephew, Faustus Socinus (1539-1604) constituted the beginnings of modernUnitarianism.. Laelius Socinus was the preacher and reformer, as Faustus Socinus was the theologian; or, as Baumgarten Crusius expresses it: “the former was the spiritual founder of Socinianism, and the latter the founder of the sect.” Their writings are collected in the Bibliotheca Fratrum Polonorum. The Racovian Catechism, taking its name from the Polish town Racow, contains the most succinct exposition of their views. In 1660, the Unitarian church of the Socini in Poland was destroyed by persecution, but its Hungarian offshoot has still more than a hundred congregations.

    2. British Theology, represented by:

      1. The Baptists, John Bunyan (1628-1688), John Gill (1697- 1771), and Andrew Fuller (1754-1815).

        Some of the best British theology is Baptist. Among John Bunyan’s works we may mention his “Gospel Truths Opened” though his “Pilgrim’s Progress” and “Holy War” are theological treatises in allegorical form. Macaulay calls Milton and Bunyan the two great creative minds of England during the latter part of the 17th century. John Gill’s “Body of Practical Divinity” shows much ability, although the Rabbinical learning of the author occasionally displays itself ins a curious exegesis, as when on the word “Abba” he remarks; “You see that this word which means ‘Father’ reads the same

        whether we read forward or backward; which suggests that God is the same whichever way we look at him.” Andrew Fuller’s “Letters on Systematic Divinity” is a brief compendia of theology. His treatises upon special doctrines are marked by sound judgment and clear insight. They were the most influential factor in rescuing the evangelical churches of England from antinomianism. They justify the epithets which Robert Hall, one of the greatest of Baptist preachers, gives him: “sagacious,” “luminous,” “powerful.”

      2. The Puritans, John Owen (1616-1683), Richard Baxter (1615-1691), John Howe (1530-1705), and Thomas Ridgeley (1666-1734).

        Owen was the most rigid, as Baxter was the most liberal, of the Puritans. The Encyclopædia Britannica remarks; “As a theological thinker and

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        writer, John Owen holds his own distinctly defined place among those titanic intellects with which the age abounded. Surpassed by Baxter in point and pathos, by Howe in imagination and the higher philosophy, he is unrivaled in his power of unfolding the rich meanings of Scripture. In his writings he was preeminently the great theologian.” Baxter wrote a “Methodus Theologiæ,” and a “Catholic Theology”; John Howe is chiefly known by his “Living Temple”; Thomas Ridgeley by his “Body of Divinity.” Charles H. Spurgeon never ceased to urge his students to become familiar with the Puritan Adams, Ambrose, Bowden, Manton and Sibbes.

      3. The Scotch Presbyterians, Thomas Boston (1676-1732), John Dick (1764-1833), and Thomas Chalmers (1780-1847).

        Of the Scotch Presbyterians, Boston is the most voluminous, Dick the most calm and fair, Chalmers the most fervid and popular.

      4. The Methodists, John Wesley (1703-1791), and Richard Watson (1781-1833).

        Of the Methodists, John Wesley’s doctrine is presented in “Christian Theology.” collected from his writings by the Rev. Thornley Smith. The great Methodist textbook, however, is the “Institutes” of Watson, who systematized and expounded the Wesleyan theology. Pope, a recent English theologian, follows Watson’s modified and improved Arminianism, while Whedon and Raymond, recent American writers, hold rather to a radical and extreme Arminianism.

      5. The Quakers, George Fox (1624-1691), and Robert Barclay (1648-


        As Jesus, the preacher and reformer, preceded Paul the theologian; as Luther preceded Melanchthon; as Zwingle preceded Calvin; as Laelius Socinus preceded Faustus Socinus; as Wesley preceded Watson; so Fox preceded Barclay. Barclay wrote an “Apology for the true Christian Divinity,” which Dr. E. G. Robinson described as “not a formal treatise of Systematic Theology, but the ablest exposition of the views of the Quakers.” George Fox was the reformer, William Penn the social founder, Robert Barclay the theologian, of Quakerism.

      6. The English Churchmen, Richard Hooker (1553-1600), Gilbert Burnet (1643-1715), and John Pearson (1613-1686).

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      The English church has produced no great systematic theologian (see reasons assigned in Dorner, Gesch. prof. Theologie,. 470). The “judicious “Hooker is still its greatest theological writer, although his work is only on “Ecclesiastical Polity.” Bishop Burnet is the author of the “Exposition of the XXXIX Articles,” and Bishop Pearson of the “Exposition of the Creed.” Both these are common English textbooks. A recent “Compendium of Dogmatic Theology,” by Litton, shows a tendency to return from the usual Arminianism of the Anglican church to the old Augustinianism; so also Bishop Moule’s “Outlines of Christian Doctrine,” and Mason’s “Faith of the Gospel.”

    3. American theology, running in two lines:

    1. The Reformed system of Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758), modified. successively by Joseph Bellamy (1719-1790), Samuel Hopkins (1721-

      1803), Timothy Dwight (1752-1817), Nathanael Emmons (1745-1840), Leonard Woods (1774-1854), Charles G. Finney (1792-1875), Nathaniel

      W. Taylor (1786-1858), and Horace Bushnell (1802-1876). Calvinism, as thus modified, is often called the New England, or New School, theology.

      Jonathan Edwards, one of the greatest of metaphysicians and theologians, was an Idealist who held that God is the only real cause, either in the realm of matter or in the realm of mind. He regarded the chief good as happiness — a form of sensibility. Virtue was voluntary choice of this good. Hence union with Adam in acts and exercises was sufficient. This God’s will made identity of being with Adam. This led to the exercise system of Hopkins and Emmons, on the one hand, and to Bellamy’s and Dwight’s denial of any imputation of Adam’s sin or of inborn depravity, on the other — in

      which last denial agree many other New England theologians who reject the exercise scheme, as for example, Strong, Tyler, Smalley, Burton, Woods, and Park. Dr. N. W. Taylor added a more distinctly Arminian element, the power of contrary choice — and with this tenet of the New Haven theology, Charles G. Finney, of Oberlin, substantially agreed. Horace Bushnell held to a practically Sabellian view of the Trinity, and to a moral influence theory of the atonement. Thus from certain principles admitted by Edwards, who held in the main to an Old School theology, the New School theology has been gradually developed.

      Robert Hall called Edwards “the greatest of the sons of men.” Dr. Chalmers regarded him as the “greatest of theologians.” Dr. Fairbairn says: “He is not only the greatest of all the thinkers that America has produced, but also the highest speculative genius of the eighteenth

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      century. In a far higher degree than Spinoza, he was a ‘God- intoxicated man.’” His fundamental notion that there is no causality except the divine was made the basis of a theory of necessity which played into the hands of the deists when he opposed and was alien not only to Christianity but even to theism. Edwards could not have gotten his idealism from Berkeley; it may have been suggested to him by the writings of Locke or Newton, Cudworth or Descartes, John Norris or Arthur Collier. See Prof. H. N. Gardiner, in Philos. Rev., Nov. 1900:573-596; Prof. E. C. Smyth, in Am. Jour. Theol., Oct. 1897:916; Allen, Jonathan Edwards, 16, 308-310, and in Atlantic Monthly, I)ec. 1891:767; Sanborn, in Jour. Spec. Philos., Oct. 1881:401-420; G. P.. Fisher, Edwards on the Trinity, 18, 19.

    2. The older Calvinism, represented by Charles Hodge the father (1797-

    1878) and A. A. Hodge the son (1823-1886), together with Henry B. Smith (1815-1877), Robert J. Breckinridge (1800- 1871), Samuel J. Baird, and William G. T. Shedd (1820-1894). All these, although with minor differences, hold to views of human depravity and divine grace more nearly conformed to the doctrine of Augustine and Calvin, and are for this reason distinguished from the New England theologians and their followers by the popular title of Old School.

    Old School theology, in its view of predestination, exalts God; New School theology, by emphasizing the freedom of the will, exalts man. It is yet more important to note that Old School theology has for its characteristic tenet the guilt of inborn depravity. Limit among those who hold this view, some are federalists and creatianists, and justify God’s condemnation of all men upon the ground that Adam represented his posterity. Such are the Princeton theologians generally, including Charles Hodge, A. A. Hodge, and the brothers

    Alexander. Among those who hold to the Old School doctrine of the guilt of inborn depravity, however, there are others who are traducians, and who explain the imputation of Adam’s sin to his posterity upon the ground of the natural union between him and them. Baird’s “Elohim Revealed” and Shedd’s essay on “Original Sin” (Sin a Nature and that Nature Guilt) represent this realistic conception of the relation of the race to its first father. R.. J. Beckinridge, R. L. Dabney, and J. H. Thornwell assert the fact of inherent corruption and guilt, but refuse to assign any rationale for it, though they tend to realism. H. B. Smith holds guardedly to the theory of mediate imputation.

    On the history of Systematic Theology in general, see Hagenbach, History of Doctrine (from which many of the facts above given are taken), and Shedd, History of Doctrine; also, Ebrard, Dogmatik, 1:44- 100; Kahnis,

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    Dogmatik, 1:15-128; Hase, Hutterus Redivivus, 24-52. Gretillat, Theologie Systematique, 3:24-120, has given an excellent history of theology, brought down to the present time. On the history of New England theology, see Fisher, Discussions and Essays, 285-354.


    1. Various methods of arranging the topics of a theological system.

      1. The Analytical method of Calixtus begins with the assumed end of all things, blessedness, and thence passes to the means by which it is secured.

      2. The Trinitarian method of Leydecker and Martensen regards Christian doctrine as a manifestation successively of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

      3. The Federal method of Cocceius, Witsius, and Boston treats theology under the two covenants.

      4. The Anthropological method of Chalmers and Rothe; the former beginning with the Disease of Man and passing to the Remedy; the latter dividing his Dogmatik into the Consciousness of Sin and the Consciousness of Redemption.

      5. The Christological method of Hase, Thomasius and Andrew Fuller treats of God, man, and sin, as presuppositions of the person and work of Christ. Mention may also be made of

      6. The Historical method, followed by Ursinus, and adopted in Jonathan Edwards’s History of Redemption; and

      7. The Allegorical method of Dannhauer, in which man is described as a wanderer, life as a road, the Holy Spirit as a light, the church as a candlestick, God as the end, and heaven as the home; so Bunyan’s Holy War, and Howe’s Living Temple.

      See Calixtus, Epitome Theologiæ; Leydecker, De (Economia trium Personarum in Negotio Salutis humanæ; Martensen(1808-1884), Christian Dogmatics; Cocceius, Summa Theologiæ, and Summa Doctrinæ de Fúdere et Testamento Dei, in Works, vol. vi; Witsius, The Economy of the Covenants; Boston, A Complete Body of Divinity (in Works, vol. 1 and 2), Questions in Divinity (vol. 6), Human Nature in its Fourfold State (vol. 8); Chalmers, Institutes of Theology; Rothe (1799-1867). Dogmatik, and Theologische Ethik; Hase (1800-1890), Evangelische Dogmatik; Thomasius (1802-1875), Christi Person und Werk; Fuller, Gospel

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      Worthy of all Acceptation (in Works, 2:328-416, and Letters on Systematic Divinity (1:684-711); Ursinus (1534-1583), Loci

      Theologici (in Works, 1:426-909); Dannhauer (1603-1666) Hodosophia Christiana, seu Theologia Positiva in Methodum redacta. Jonathan Edwards’s so called History of Redemption was in reality a system of theology in historical form. It “was to begin and end with eternity, all great events and epochs in the being viewed ‘sub specie eternitatis.’ The three worlds — heaven, earth and hell — were to be the scenes of this grand drama. It was to include the topics of theology as living factors, each in its own place,” and all forming a complete and harmonious whole; see Allen, Jonathan Edwards, 379, 380.

    2. The Synthetic Method, which we adopt in this compendium, is both the most common and the most logical method of arranging the topics of theology. This method proceeds from causes to effects, or, in the language of Hagenbach (Hist. Doctrine, 2; 152), “starts from the highest principle, God, and proceeds to man, Christ, redemption, and finally to the end of all things.” In such a treatment of theology we may best arrange our topics in the following order;

    1st . The existence of God.

    2d . The Scriptures a revelation from God.

    3d . The nature, decrees and works of God.

    4th . Man, in his original likeness to God and subsequent apostasy.

    5th . Redemption, through the work of Christ and of the Holy Spirit.

    6th . The nature and laws of the Christian church.

    7th . The end of the present system of things.


valuable for reference

  1. Confessions: Schaff, Creeds of Christendom.

  2. Compendiums: H. B. Smith, System of Christian Theology;

    A. A. Hodge, Outlines of Theology; E. H. Johnson, Outline of Systematic Theology; Hovey, Manual of Theology and Ethics;

    W. N. Clarke, Outline

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    of Christian Theology; Hase, Hutterus Redivivus; Luthardt, Compendium der Dogmatik; Kurtz, Religionslehre.

  3. Extended Treatises: Dorner, System of Christian Doctrine; Shedd, Dogmatic Theology; Calvin, Institutes; Charles Hodge, Systematic Theology; Van Oosterzee, Christian Dogmatics; Baird, Elohim Revealed; Luthardt, Fundamental, Saving, and Moral Truths; Phillippi, Glaubenslehre; Thomasius, Christi Person und Werk.

  4. Collected Works: Jonathan Edwards; Andrew Fuller.

  5. Histories of Doctrine: Harnack; Hagenbach; Shedd; Fisher; Sheldon; Orr, Progress of Dogma.

  6. Monographs: Julius Muller, Doctrine of Sin; Shedd, Discourses and Essays; Liddon, Our Lord’s Divinity; Dorner, History of the Doctrine of the Person of Christ; Dale, Atonement; Strong, Christ in Creation; Upton, Hibbert Lectures.

  7. Theism: Martineau, Study of Religion; Harris, Philosophical Basis of Theism; Strong, Philosophy and Religion; Bruce, Apologetics; Drummond, Ascent of Man; Griffith-Jones, Ascent through Christ.

  8. Christian Evidences: Butler, Analogy of Natural and Revealed Religion; Fisher, Grounds of Theistic and Christian Belief; Row, Bampton Lectures for 1877; Peabody, Evidences of Christianity; Mair, Christian Evidences; Fairbairn, Philosophy of the Christian Religion; Matheson, Spiritual Development of St. Paul.

  9. Intellectual Philosophy: Stout, Handbook of Psychology; Bowne, Metaphysics; Porter, Human Intellect; Hill, Elements of Psychology; Dewey, Psychology.

  10. Moral Philosophy: Robinson, Principles and Practice of Morality; Smyth, Christian Ethics; Porter, Elements of Moral Science; Calderwood, Moral Philosophy; Alexander, Moral Science; Robins, Ethics of the Christian Life.

  11. General Science: Todd, Astronomy; Wentworth and Hill, Physics; Remsen, Chemistry; Brigham, Geology; Parker, Biology; Martin, Physiology; Ward, Fairbanks, or West, Sociology; Walker, Political Economy.

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  12. Theological Encyclopcædias: Schaff-Herzog (English); McClintock and Strong; Herzog (Second German Edition).

  13. Bible Dictionaries: Hastings; Davis; Cheyne; Smith (edited by Hackett).

  14. Commentaries: Meyer, on the New Testament; Philippi, Lange, Shedd, Sanday, on the Epistle to the Romans; Godet, on John’s Gospel; Lightfoot, on Philippians and Colossians; Expositor’s Bible, on the Old Testament books.

  15. Bibles: American Revision (standard edition); Revised Greek — English New Testament (published by Harper & Brothers); Annotated Paragraph Bible (published by the London Religious Tract Society) Stier and Theile, Polyglotten

— Bibel.

An attempt has been made, in the list of textbooks given above, to put first in each class the book best worth purchasing by the average theological student, and to arrange the books that follow this first one in the order of their value. German books, however when they are not yet accessible in an English translation, are put last, simply because they are less likely to be used as books of reference by the average student.

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God is the infinite and perfect Spirit in whom all things have their source, support, and end.

On the definition of the term God, see Hodge, Systematic Theology, 1:366. Other definitions are those of Calovius: “Essentia spiritualis infinita”; Ebrad: “The eternal, uncaused, independent, necessary Being, that hath active power, life, wisdom, goodness, and whatever other supposable excellency, in the highest perfection, in and of itself”; Westminster Catechism: “A Spirit infinite, eternal and unchangeable in his being, wisdom, power, holiness, justice, goodness and truth”; Andrew Fuller: “The first cause and the last end of all things.”

The existence of God is a first truth; in other words, the knowledge of God’s existence is a rational intuition. Logically, it precedes and conditions all observation and reasoning. Chronologically, only reflection upon the phenomena of nature and of mind occasions its rise in consciousness.

The term intuition means simply direct knowledge. Lowndes (Philos. Of Primary Beliefs, 78) and Mansel (metaphysics, 52) would use the

term only of our direct knowledge of substances, as self and body; Porter applies it by preference to our cognition of first truths, such as have been already mentioned. Harris (Philos. Basis of Theism, 44- 151, but esp. 45,

46) makes it include both. He divides intuitions into two classes:

  1. Presentative intuitions, as self consciousness (in virtue of which I perceive the existence of spirit and already come in contact with the supernatural), and sense perception (in virtue of which I perceive the existence of matter, at least in my own organism, and come in contact with nature);

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  2. Rational intuitions, as space, time, substance cause, final cause, right, absolute being. We may accept this nomenclature, using the terms “first truths” and “rational intuitions” as equivalent of each other, and classifying rational intuitions under the heads of

  1. intuitions of relations, as space and time;

  2. intuitions of principles, as substance, cause, final cause, right and

  3. intuition of absolute Being, Power, Reason, Perfection, Personality, as God. We hold that, as upon occasion of the senses cognizing (a) extended matter, (b) succession,, (c) qualities, (d) cause, (e) design, (f) obligation, so upon occasion of our cognizing our finiteness, dependence and responsibility, the mind directly cognizes the existence of an Infinite and Absolute Authority, Perfection, Personality, upon whom we are dependent and to whom we are responsible.

Bowne, Theory of Thought and Knowledge, 60 — “As we walk in entire ignorance of our muscles, so we often thing in entire ignorance of the principles which underlie and determine thinking. But as anatomy reveals that the apparently simple act of waling involves a highly complex muscular activity, so analysis reveals that the apparently simple act of thinking involves a system of mental principles.” Dewey, Psychology, 238,244 — “Perception, memory, imagination, conception — each of these is an act of intuition...Every concrete act of knowledge involves an intuition of God.” Martineau, Types, 1:459 — The attempt to divest experience of either percepts or intuitions is “like the attempt to peel a bubble in search for its colors and contents: in tenuem ex oculis evanuit auram”; Study 1:199