life, the worldliness of the age, and the unwise excess of living, in numerous cases beyond available means, indispose and incapacitate the members of our churches and congregations to meet the necessary increasing expenses of living, and support adequately the ministry. They give up experienced ministers, especially if they have families, for young and inexperienced ones, who can live for moderate salaries. The church in such an unhappy state of things loses the benefit of ripe scholarship and rich experience, and is necessarily led into superficial actions and forms of life by those whose scholarship and experience are necessarily immature. Nor is this all. The ministry in many cases is demitted entirely, and good talent lost to the church and the world.

The capricious and unregulated voluntary principle, in which we have reposed for a stable and sufficient ministerial support, has failed us, in one important thing at least—a certain support. The fluctuating means furnished by the church have been governed by no law. Complaints have rung out on all sides, and after reiterated efforts to bring the church up to her duty, the hearts and homes of many of the ministers have been pained with the question, "What shall we eat, and what shall we drink, and wherewithal shall we be clothed ?" We speak advisedly when we say that the capricious and unregulated voluntary principle is, and has been all this. If the church were wholly consecrated to God, if his revealed will were the law of giving, as well as the law of action, and the church could be made to understand that it is not the support of a certain man as a minister that is provided for in the word of God, but the ministry as a consecrated body of men, not unlike the tribe of Levi under the Old Testament dispensation, then the voluntary principle would cease to be capricious and unregulated by the express will of God, would become a stable support, and able churches would not be content to meet liberally the wants of their own ministers. They would see that every minister is furnished for his work, and amply supported in its performance. What is to be done? Is this state of things to continue, and the work of the Lord to suffer by its continuance? Is the tribe of Judah never to provide comfortably for the working tribe of Levi? The approach of the re-idion of the two great Presbyterian bodies in the United States offers a good opportunity to change this unjust state of things, and inaugurate a general movement to raise a Sustentation Fund for the certain and adequate support of the ministry. We have the noble example of the Free Church of Scotland, so that the movement is not of the nature of an experiment, and we are in far more favorable circumstances to attempt it than the Scotch Church ever has been. The fund can be raised, and the minimum stipend of every minister can be placed at $800. What would be the consequences ? The churches would be better served, the pastoral relations would be more sacred, the ministry could give undivided attention to the ninisterial work, an increasing supply of good candidates could be secured, the work of the Lord in the pulpit, and in every other place and form would be urged forward with more devotion and zeal, and the homes and families of ministers would be made comfortable. The Presbytery of Kansas, thus viewing the whole subject, and believingly entertaining these views, is constrained to overture the General Assembly to take steps to secure, if possible, at the consummation of the union, the attention of the united churches to the raising of a Sustentation Fund for the ministry.

WM. H. SMITH, October 13, 1869.

Stated Clerk of the Presbytery of Kansas.

ANSWER TO THE OVERTURE FROM THE PRESBYTERY OF KANSAS. To the overture from the Presbytery of Kansas, commended by the Synod of Kansas, asking that measures be taken by this General Assembly to provide a Sustentation Fund, by which the salaries of our ministers may be secured and equalized, the Assembly would reply by referring to its answer given to similar overtures at its session last May, and recorded on page 262 of the minutes.

This answer is given, not at all to express opposition to this overture, which treats of a subject of vital importance to our whole church, but in view of the propriety of originating specific action upon such a momentous matter in the United Church.

Thus the re-union of the sundered Presbyterian Church is fully completed and inaugurated. What next? Shall this great body content itself with rejoicings and jubilations over this grand event? We quite agree with those who would count such an issue of the re-union of these great bodies simply a disgrace and a calamity. We trust that the energies of all, whatever may have been their hesitation or opposition at any previous stage of this movement, will now be devoted to rendering it, in every good sense, a success- -a success not of pride, self-complacency, and vainglorious boasting, but a success of real inward unity, animating this external organic union, so that the one body may be inspired by one spirit ; that it may be cemented and consolidated in a real, great, and glorious advance of truth, unity, and charity; in an immense growth of sound Christian evangelism, true piety, and of Presbyterian doctrine, order, polity, institutions, life, and manners. Among the periodicals now existing in the United Church, this belongs to the few planted in the original undivided church, years before the division. It then labored to build up the church, and prevent disruption, by advocating the doctrines and order of our standards against heterogeneous and divisive elements. It often incurred the censure of extremists on all sides, while approved by the great heart of the church it sought to edify on the basis of sound conservatism; and its labors have not been in vain, nor have we spent our strength for naught. The cardinal principles which we have maintained in regard to the immiscible nature of Congregational and Presbyterian polities; the conducting of church work by church agencies, and Presbyterian work by Presbyterian agencies; making the standards the only doctrinal and ecclesiastical basis of union, leaving to the several series of courts of the church to decide what deviations from their ipsissima verba are not inconsistent with the essentials of the system they contain, are now accepted as the true and characteristic principles of the re-united church. And in this church again undivided, with that charity which rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth, it will endeavor to keep the unity of the spirit in the bond of peace; to promote wholesome progress and a sound conservatism; to contend earnestly for the faith once delivered to the saints, against the triple alliance of rationalism, ritualism, and materialism ; to study the things that make peace, and things whereby one may edify another; and to summon to its aid the ablest contributors, new and old, from all, of whatever past or present ecclesiastical connection, who are ready to make common cause with us in maintaining and spreading true Christianity, Calvinism, and Presbyterianism, to the end that


θεω μονω δοξα. .

Art. VII.—The Life of Joseph Addison Alexander, D. D.,

Professor in the Theological Seminary at Princeton, N.J. By HENRY CARRINGTON ALEXANDER. 2 vols., cr. 8vo. New York: Charles Scribner & Co. 1870.

This is one of the most skilfully executed biographies within our knowledge. It will not address itself to those interested only in secular affairs. It does not delineate the character or unfold the history of a man, whose life was spent in the sight of the world, and whose influence determined the destiny of nations. Its subject was a theologian and a secluded inan of letters. His sphere was comparatively limited ; and the number of those disposed to concern themselves with his history may be small compared with the mass of our teeming, agitated population, who seldom raise their eyes from the ground on which they tread. Nevertheless, the delineation of the character and work of a great and good man of eminence and usefulness in the sphere in which he moved, is a matter of high interest to all to whom greatness and goodness are attractive.

The task of the biographer in the present case was, in some respects, easy. He had a great subject, and his materials were abundant. In other respects his task was peculiarly difficult. The character with which he had to deal was so manifold or many sided ; its peculiarities were so marked; it was so different from itself at different times, that to do it full justice was no easy matter. The biographer has done his work admirably. If any man in the world knew Dr. Addison Alexander thoroughly, we thought we did. We lived in the same town with him from the time he was three years old until we saw him die. For nearly a quarter of a century we were his colleague. We were associated with him during all that time in different enterprises. Yet we acknowledge that after reading this book our conception of the man is more comprehensive, and in some respects more just than it ever was before.

The materials at the command of his biographer, although abundant, were scattered, disjointed, and fragmentary. These have all been woven together with consummate skill.

The style of the work also is excellent. It is clear, pure, and racy. There is no prolixity; no amplification,-all is rapid and vivacious. There is at times the introduction of unimportant or irrelevant details. But the movement is so rapid, the reader is neither impeded nor annoyed by these small matters.

Having expressed our opinion of the book before us, we feel inclined to lay down our pen. We have so often, on different occasions, expressed our estimate of the greatness and worth of Dr. Addison Alexander, that it seems unnecessary to say any thing more on that subject. Our readers would regard it

as a work of supererogation to attempt a synopsis of the life or sketch of the character of a man of whom they have such a biography as this. No one wants to look at a photograph when he has before him a full-length portrait from the hands of a first-rate artist.

Nevertheless, Dr. Alexander was ours; our friend; our colleague; our decus et tutamen. He was a Princeton man; and the Princeton Review cannot refrain from placing its chaplet, though withered and tear-bedewed, upon his grave. His memory is loved, reverenced, and cherished here, as it can be nowhere else.

Dr. Alexander was a truly great man, without being a prodigy. That term is commonly applied to those who seem to be endowed with some faculty denied to other men; or who possess some one mental power in an abnormal degree. It may be a talent for numbers, for language, for music, or any thing else. Dr. Alexander did not belong to that class. He was not thus one-sided. He had great power for every thing he chose to attempt. His acquisitions were determined by his tastes. He studied what was agreeable to him, and left unnoticed what did not suit his fancy. After leaving college he had a strong inclination to study law. Had he done so, there can be no rational doubt he would have become one of the greatest jurists and advocates our country has produced. Few men were ever less indebted to instruction or external educational influences. He was taught what he learned in the same sense that he was taught to walk. He needed and received as little assistance in the one case as in the other. His father, seeing his precocious and extraordinary ability, and his disposition to study, left him very much to himself. He went to the grammar school and afterward through college; but a very small part of his time or attention was given to the prescribed curriculum in those institutions. He walked the course absorbed with other things.

The three departments to which his taste and providential circumstances led bim to devote his principal attention, were language, history (sacred and secular including interpretation), and general literature. It was in the first of these that his earliest, and perhaps his most extraordinary attainments were

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