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What ground of certainty can we have that it speaks to us in the name and by the authority of God? Romish theologians, Dr. Stone included, deem these crucial and stunning questions. They think the sole possible answer is, that we can know it only by the testimony of the church. This testimony they maintain is that of the Romish hierarchy, and not only so, but ultramontanes, such as Dr. Stone and the Vatican Council, hold that it must be given by the Pope as the only original and primal repository of infallibility.
But the fallacy of such assumptions and paralogisms is readily apparent. How do we know the heavens, the earth, our own fearfully and wonderfully made frames, to be the work of God, to declare his glory, and evince his eternal power and Godhead? Do they beam upon us a self-evidence of infallible certainty to every candid mind? And as surely as they are self-evidently the work of God, are not the Holy Scriptures self-evidently the word of God, the utterance of one who spake as never man spake?
It is vain for Papists to impugn the sufficiency of such evidence. They are now wont to appeal to it as the evidence of the divine origin and prerogatives of their own body and the infallibility of its primate. Although Dr. Stoue, like the Pope and Vatican Council appeals at great length to the Scriptures to prove the primacy and infallibility of Peter and his alleged successors in the pontifical chair,* nevertheless he follows Archbishop Manning, and the drift of recent ultramontane theologians in appealing to this self-evidence as the main proof of the divinity, supremacy, and infallibility of the Romish Church in the person of its supreme head. Says Dr. Stone, “ The Catholic believes in the Holy Catholic Church. But he does not so merely as a logical inference from the words of Scripture, He does not even need the Scriptures to know that the church is divine. There she stands and her existence is the evidence of her origin. She speaks; and her claims are her credentials. She acts; and her work is her vindication,” p. 146. To this attitude the Vatican claim is driven, by remorseless logic. The claim is that the Scriptures derive their authority solely from the testimony of the church, uttered by its infallible
* See pp. 228 et seq.
antiquity; and India, for the present, has been omitted on account of the utter lack of definite information touching all that part of her existence prior to the Greek invasion.
Over the whole of the ancient Oriental period, where not included in the Hebrew narrative, there is a very generally extended veil of doubt. The testimony of monuments is positive as to isolated facts: but in many cases hopelessly disconnected, leaving the very foundations of history matter of conjecture. In their former volume these authors granted too much credence to such conjectures ; in the present there is not so large a proportion of that tantalizing material, and a great part of its field comes within the orbit of Herodotus, where the results of antiquarian research give and receive confirmation from connected history.
The subjects of the volume are the Medes and Persians; the construction of the Medo-Persian empire, until the reign of Darius Hystaspis, the Phænicians until their subjugation to Persia ; Carthage until after the first treaty with Rome, and the opening of the first Sicilian war; and the Arabians under the three heads of Yemen, Hejaz, and Arabia Petræa.
The narrative is compact, and yet spirited: the arrangement well designed for instruction; and the style concise but easy and clear. For the purpose of giving a connected view of ancient Oriental history, according to the utmost of the resources which scholarship and the work of the antiquarian have amassed, and giving it unburdened by discussions, there is nothing else equal to this work of Lenormant and Chevalier. Thoughts on Religious Erperience. By the Rev. Archibald Alexander,
D. D. Presbyterian Board of Publication. Dr. Alexander was eminent for his learning, sagacity, and wisdom; for his theological insight, and more still for his devoutness and experimental piety. But the gift in which he was most unrivalled was that of guiding and quickening the religious experience of others; of awakening devout feeling, probing the heart, and exposing morbid and pseudo-religious exercises. This, not less than his great abilities and acquirements, gave him an influence for many years scarcely equalled by any divine in the American church. This volume contains the aroma of his spiritual wisdom and experience. We recollect the great benefit we derived from its heavenly instructions when they first appeared. And among all recent issues of the press we hardly know of any more precious reading for Christians whether young or old. The True Unity of Christ's Church; being a Renewed Appeal to the
Friends of the Redeemer, on Primitive Christian Union and the History of its Corruption. To which is now added a Modified Plan for the Reunion of all Evangelical Christians ; Embracing as Integral Parts the World's Evangelical Alliance, with all its National Branches. By S. S. Schmucker, D. D. New York: Anson D. T.
Randolph & Co. 1870. The substance of this volume was published more than thirty years ago. It now appears with modifications in its third edition. The plan of union advocated by the venerable author is a sort of federative union among the various Evangelical churches, having a creed substantially like that of the Evangelical Alliance, but without any regular or formal ecclesiastical jurisdiction, this being left to the several bodies composing the federation and represented in it by
Christian faith, the things that are freely given it of God; not for the purpose of lording it over the consciences of others, but for its own sure guidance in the way of life, and certain acceptance by that Master to whom alone it stands or falls, and who is alone Lord of the conscience. In this highest sense of the word church, and to the extent above described, it ever has claimed and does claim to know in whom it believes. It rests on a sure foundation. It is not true in this sense that Rome alone has claimed snre divine guidance, and thus proves its exclusive divinity, as Dr. Stone claims. It alone has claimed infallibility as the peculium of Popes, cardinals, or other ecclesiastics for the government of the whole body. How then do the saints thus infallibly know the essential truths of salvation ? By the Word, the inspired Word. But says Dr. Stone (p. 141): "The fact of inspiration is a supernatural fact, a divine fact, and can only be attested by a divine witness which you are not.” Who then is such a witness? The Pope of Rome, or a truly divine witness testifying in his word, and in our spirits to the divine truth and authority of that word ? “God hath revealed them to us by his spirit.” He taketh the things of Christ and showeth them unto us. However else “it doth evidence itself to be the Word of God, yet notwithstanding, our full persuasion and assurance of the infallible truth and divine authority thereof is from the inward work of the Holy Spirit, bearing witness, by and with the Word, in our hearts." (Confession of Faith, Chap. I., 5.)
" But” says Dr. Stone, “ your hope, then, is based upon your faith, and your faith reposes upon the fact of inspiration; but the fact of inspiration is supported by what? Your little world, like the Hindoos, rests upon the elephant, and the elephant rests upon the tortoise, and the tortoise rests upon nothing. This is only saying that your faith rests upon inspiration, and inspiration is proved by your faith.” (P. 140.) Is not Dr. Stone sharp enough to see that this is good for nothing, or else thrice good against his own system? Because we believe the Bible inspired upon the evidence of divinity it bears, as evinced by the Spirit witnessing in it, and in our own souls by enlightening them to see it, are we therefore proving it by our faith, or not rather exercising faith in it
because proved true in its own divine light? Is not his puerile arguing just as applicable to his own doctrine of the selfevidence of his Papal inspiration and infallibility? Is it not doubly true in this case that all the inspiration here is what his belief creates—and that here we find the real elephant resting on the tortoise and the tortoise on nothing ? Have we not the testimony of God through his Spirit witnessing in his Word, and also in our hearts, opening our eyes to understand wondrous things out of his law? And if we receive the witness of men, is not the witness of God greater ? (1 John, v. 9.)
Dr. Stone freely admits that the Pontifical chair has been disgraced by a number of wicked Popes. But he, with others of his school, contends that they have been preserved from sanctioning error in doctrine. We will let our readers see how he tries to parry the snicidal blows which some of the Popes themselves have dealt against this claim, in certain deliverances which few Romanists hardly dare, in this age and country, pronounce free from inerrancy or fallibility. The official sanction of error by any Pope is fatal to the doctrine of Papal infallibility, and renders the anathemas denounced upon those who dispute it, alike absurd and profane. The manner in which he tries to neutralize these examples displays at once his brilliancy as a special pleader and the desperate. ' ness of his cause. We give first his exposition of the Inquisition, and the persecution of Galileo.
" The Spanish Inquisition, as its name implies, was not a Catholic, but a national and local tribunal. It was an institution more political than religious, authorized, it is true, by the Pope, but solicited and maintained by the royal power; an institutiou devised to protect the unity of the Spanish kingdom, and founded upon the principle that heresy was a crime against the peace of society, and, as such, punishable by the civil power. Mr. Lecky, and even Llorente himself, admit that the Roman Pontiff's more than once endeavored to mitigate its severities, and protested against the horrible excesses of Torquemada. And when Charles V. and Philip II. attempted to impose the tribunal upon Italian cities, the Popes encouraged the Italians in resisting the imposition.
"As for the Roman court, I am not aware that the smallest proof has ever been given that its proceedings were other than mild and conservative. As Balmes well observes, 'the conduct of Rome in the use which she made of the Inquisition is the best apology of Catholicity against those who attempt to stiginatize her as barbarous and sanguinary.' The records of the Roman Congregation were carried off to Paris by Napoleon, early in the present esatury; a
hilating. We quite agree with his main conclusion : "1. That the communications of spiritualism, if they come from spirits at all, are attended with such uncertainties that they are utterly unreliable and worthless. 2. That if those revelations do come from spirits, they come not from truthful but deceiving spirits."
We have received Lloyd's “Topographical and Railway Map of the Seat of War in Europe,” which is very clear and full-includes all Europe-about a yard square, and at the low price of fifty cents, free by mail.
ART. X.-LITERARY INTELLIGENCE.
GREAT BRITAIN, it is said, has not for many years known a drought equal in duration and severity to that of the last summer. The drying up of the streams has, both there and on the Continent, interfered seriously with the work of the paper-mills. It is too early to measure the influence of these things on literature. The comparative meagreness of our present report is to be traced rather to the general disinclination of publishers to bring out their most solid and important works during the summer months.
There are a few books, however, among the recent publications which have attracted and will continue to attract not a little attention. Foremost among these we put a collection of “Essays, chiefly on Questions of Church and State from 1850-70," by A. P. Stanley, D. D., Dean of Westminster. In their theological and literary qualities these essays are eminently characteristic of their distinguished author, and are typical of one strong tendency in the Church of England. In their scientific and educational aspect, Huxley's "Lay Sermons, Addresses, and Reviews" are no less significant. Another representative work is Sir John Lubbock's "Origin of Civilization, and Primitive Condition of Man; Mental and Social Condition of Savages." Probably nothing has appeared with reference to Keble which more fairly brings him out in his personality as well as in that which makes him an exponent of a school, than his recently published “Letters of Spiritual Council and Guidance."
The Collins Commentary is completed by the publication of Volume VI., in which Acts and Romans are edited by Dr. David Brown, of the Free Church College in Aberdeen, and the remaining books of the New Testament by one of his associate editors, Rev. A. R. Fausset, of York. The Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge is bringing out a commentary on the New Testament, of which Part I., recently published, contains the four Gospels, with notes by Rev. W. W. How. The Cambridge Paragraph Bible, edited by Rev. F. H Scrivener, is completed by the publication of Part II., which contains the Apocrypha and