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Committee, we find the following questions and Dr. Hodge's paper is founded on Dr. Chalmers
"Earnest Appeal to the Free Church of Scotland on “You have greatly succeeded in extending churches in Scot- the subject of Economics," which was some time ago land; you have built up the wall, and you have seen a breach republished by the American Presbyterian Board of in it; is not that a melancholy spectacle?-1 am not very sure Publication. He begins by remarkingbut that there is a greater amount of religious attendance upon ordinances now since the Disruption, than thero was
“ This suggestive and teeming pamphlet has now been sovo
ral months before the Churches, and we presume in the hands before.
of almost all our ministers. We cannot suffer ourselves to "Is there a more Christian spirit?-I think that the Free
think that so much practical wisdom, enforced by the earnest Church hos exemplified to a great degree the spirit of Chris tianity under its sufferings, and under the wrongs that have eloquence of Chalmers, can fail to influence for good a mulbeen inflicted upon it; the ejection of our teachers, for exam
titude of minds. We may not immediately see its effects, but ple; the ejection of our congregations from these quoad sacra
the principles here suggested, the plans proposed, and the churches, built with our money chiefly– I should suppose in
motives urged, must commend themselves to the judgment and
conscience of the readers, and must induce them to act, or at the proportion of seven-eighihs. The churches from which the Court of Session has ejected us, were built, I do not think
least prepare them to act, with greater intelligence and zeal, in I over estimate it when I say with seven-eighths of our money.
the prosecution of the various enterprises in which as a Church There have been a great many wrongs and injuries inflicted
we are engaged." upon us, and I perfectly marvel at the degree of forbearance He then proposes the question, “ What is the best and Christian charity wherewith all these wrongs have been method of sustaining the ministers of religion ?" and borne."
answers it, first, by stating historically the different
methods which have been adopted for that purpose; DR. HODGE OF PRINCETON ON THE
and, second, by showing that the duty in question is SUSTENTATION FUND.
a duty common to the whole Church. Under the
first head, after referring to the arrangements of the TUERE is one view of the importance of our Susten. Mosaic Economy, he comes to the apostolic age, and tation Fund which is perhaps too generally over
says: looked, and which the perusal of a paper by Dr. “From the record contained in the Acts of tho Apostles, Hodge of Princeton recently brought very vividly several facts bearing on this subject may be learned. First, before us. We mean the influence which the suc- That a lively sense of the brotherhood of believers filled the ·cess of the Free Church with regard to that Fund
hearts of the early Christians, and was the effect
of the prewill exert on the condition and interests of evangeli
sence and power of the Holy Spirit. Secondly, That in concal Churches generally. Our people hear much-al
sequence of this feeling of brotherhood, they had all things in
The multitude of them that believed, we are told, though perhaps not enough-of the duty which lies were of one heart and of one soul; neither said any of them upon the members of the Church to support her mini- that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but stry, so that all, in every part of the land, may be sup
they had all things common; neither was there any among plied with pastors, who, not rich, but having enough to
them that lacked. (Acts ii. 41, 47.) Such was the effect of preserve them from poverty or embarrassment, may in Christ Jesus. And such is the uniform tendency of that
the vivid consciousness of the union of believers as one body be able, undistracted by incessant worldly cares, to consciousness, manifesting itself in the same manner in pro. devote themselves to the high duties of their calling. portion to its strength. Experience, however, soon taught But the manner in which our people discharge their these early Christians that they were not perfect, and that it duty in this respect will wield an influence for good was not wise to act in an imperfect and mixed community on or evil far beyond the boundaries of the Free Church, 1 and governed by the Spirit of God. As the Church therefore
a principle which is applicable only to one really pervaded or even of Scotland. The point which she has al. increased, and came to include many who were Christians ready reached with regard to the maintenance of only in name, or who had but little of the Spirit of Christ, her ministers—though far below what she must the operation of this feeling of brotherhood was arrested. It yet attain to-is yet so considerable, as to have would have been destructive to act towards nominal as todrawn upon her the eyes and (we use the word in an
wards real Christians, towards indolent and selfish professors inoffensive sense) the envy of sister Churches, many
as though they were instinct with the Spirit of God. This of the ministers of which, after having borne the heat munism. They proceed on the false assumption that men are
is the fundamental error of all the modern systems of comand the burden of a long day, find themselves much not depraved. They take for granted that they are disintefarther down the hill than the lowest of those who rested, faithful, laborious. Every such system, therefore, has started as if but an hour ago. The result naturally come to nought, and must work evil, and only evil, until mea is, that the attention of our brethren in different
are really renewed and made of one heart and of one soul by Churches, and in various parts of the world, is being the apostolic Church, we hear no more of this community of
the Spirit of God. In the subsequent history, therefore, of ·called to the whole question of the best and most goods. The apostles never commanded it. They left the effective mode of supporting the ministry, and that al- Church to act on the principle that it is one only so far as it ready several movements have been commenced, while was truly one. They did not urge the outward expression a preparations are being made for others, having for single step beyond the inward reality. The instructive fact, their object the institution of such General Funds however, remains on record that the effusion of the Holy as the Free Church now possesses. Of course, these Spirit did produce this lively sense of brotherhood among Churches labour under the serious disadvantage of Christians, and a corresponding degree of liberality." having existing arrangements which it will be requi
He then comes to the establishment of Christianity site to displace, and some time may elapse before they by Constantine, and thereafter describes the various ·can overcome the difficulties incident to their posi- modes of ministerial support which have been adopted tion.
The But if, in the end, some such arrangement in established and non-established churches. should become general, we cannot but anticipate the question is then statedbest results. And the consideration that it is in our “Admitting that in this country the ministry must be suppower to help forward so desirable an issue, while ported by the voluntary contributions of the people, the our failure would almost certainly prevent it, ought particular question to which we wish to call the attention of
our readers is, On whom does the responsibility of furnishing surely to act on us as an additional and powerful that support rest? Does it rest on the individual congregaincentive to exertion.
tion which the minister serves, or upon the Church as one, and the Church as a whole ? Our object is to show that the been committed, then upon the Church as a whole rests the obligation rests upon the Church as a whole. To prevent obligatiou to sustain those who are divinoly commissioned in misapprehension, however, it is proper to state, that nothing her
uame and as her organs for the immediate discharge of 80 visionary as that every minister in every part of the coun- that duty. On what other ground do we appeal to all our try should receive the same salary is contemplated."
members, young and old, male and female, to send forth and His line of argument in support of this view we
sustain our missionaries, foreign and domestic? We do not
merely say to them that this is a duty of benevolence or of regard as unanswerable, and may be judged of from Christian charity, but we tell them it is a command of Christ, the following passages, which form the body of the a command addressed to them, which binds their conscience, paper, and which our readers will find well worth which they cannot neglect without renouncing the authority perusal :
of Christ, and thereby proving that they are destitute of his
Spirit, and are none of his. In doing this, we certainly do "The first argument in support of the position here assumed, right; but we obviously take for granted that since the comis drawn from the nature of the Church. If, according to the mission to teach all nations has been given to the whole fundamental doctrine of the Independents, believers are the Church, the duty of supporting those sent forth as teachers materials of a Church, but a covenant its form; if a number rests upon the whole Church as a common burden. The comof Christians become a Church by covenanting to meet to- mand, therefore, which binds us to support the gospel in New gother for worship and discipline; if a Church owes its exis- Jersey binds us to sustain it in Wisconsin. All the reasons tence to this mutual covenant just as a city owes its existence of the obligation apply to the one case as well as to the other. to its charter, so that we may as well talk of an universal city And we miserably fail of obedience to Christ if we content us of a Church catholic, then there is no room for the discus- | ourselves with supporting our own pastor, and let others prosion of this question. : . But such is not the scriptural, vide for themselves or perish, as they see fit. it is not the Presbyterian idea of the Church. It is not the “A third consideration which leads to the conclusion for idea which has been living and active in the minds of all which we are now contending is, that the ministry pertains to Christians from the beginning.
the whole Church, and not primarily and characteristically to "It is universally admitted that those who are united in the each particular congregation. When a man is ordained, the une visible Church owe certain duties to each other. 'In office into which he is inducted has relation to the Church as other words, there are certain duties which rest upon them as a whole. All the prerogatives and obligations of that office
Church. It is also admitted that the support of the ministry are conveyed, though he has no separate congregation confided is one of those duties. If, therefore, the Church is nothing to his care. A call to a particular Church does not convey and can be nothing beyond a single congregation, then that the ministerial office, it only gives authority to exercise that duty, and all others of a like kind which rest upon the Church office over a particular people, and within a given sphere. The as such, are limited to the bounds of the congregation. The office itself has far wider relations. If it were true that the obligation of obedience does not extend beyond the list of ministerial office has relation primarily and essentially to a their fellow-worshippers in the same house. The obligation particular congregation, so that a man can no more be a minito support the ministry is confined to their own immediate ster without a congregation, than a husband without a wife pastor. But if the Church consists of all believers, then the (the favourite illustration of those who adopt this view of the whole body of believers stand in the relationship of Church- matter), then it would follow that no man is a minister exmembership, and the duties of obedience and mutual aid in cept to his own congregation, nor can be perform any minithe discharge of all ecelesiastical obligations rest on the whole sterial acts out of his own charge; that he ceases to be a miniunited body; that is, on all who recognise each other as mem- ster as soon as he ceases to be a pastor; and that the Church bers of the same Church. It follows, therefore, from the has no right to ordain men as missionaries. These are not scriptural doctrine of the Church, that the obligation to pro- only the logical conclusions from this doctrine, they were all vide the means of grace for the whole Church, rests on the admitted and contended for by the early and consistent IndeChurch as a whole, and not merely or exclusively on each pendents. This view is obviously unscriptural. The apostle, separate congregation for itself.
after teaching, that the Church is one-one body having one "The second argument in support of this doctrino is derived Spirit, one faith, one Lord, one baptism-adds, that to this one from the commission given to ibe Church. Christ said to his Church the ascended Saviour gave gifts, viz., apostles, prodisciples: Go into all the world and make disciples of all phets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers for the work of the nations. The prerogative and duty here enjoined, is to teach ministry and for the edifying of the body of Christ. The all nations. For the discharge of this duty the ministry was apostles, prophets, evangelists, and teachers were not given to appointed. Christ, in the first instance personally, and after- particular congregations, but to the Church generally. . wards by his Spirit, calls and qualifies certain men to be “A fourth argument on this subject is, that all the reasons organs and agents of the Church in the great work of teaching which are given in the Sacred Scriptures to show that the the nations. To whom, then, was this commission given ministry ought to be supported, bear on the Church as one On whom does the obligation of discharging the duty, it en- body. Our Saviour says the labourer is worthy of his bire. joins rest ? Not on the apostles alone--not on the ministry But in whose service does the minister labour ? Who gave alone_but on the whole Church. This is indeed a very im- him his commission ? In whose name does he act? Whose portant point, much debated between Romanists and Protes- work is be doing? To whom is he responsible? Is it not Laats. It must here be taken for granted, that neither pre- the Church as a whole, and not this or that particular congrelates por presbyters are the Church, but that God's people are gation ? Again, to whose benefit do the fruits of his labour the Church, and that to the Church as such, to the Church as a redound? When souls are converted, saints edified, children whole, to the Church as one, was this great commission given. educated in the fear of God, is this a local benefit? Are we It was originally addressed to a promiscuous assembly of be- not one body? Has the hand no interest in the soundness of lievers. The power and the promise which it conveyed were the foot, or the ear in the well-being of the eye?. conected with the gift of the Holy Spirit. The presence of “ In the fifth place, this matter may be argued from the comthe Spirit was the source at once of the power here conferred, mon principles of justice. Our present system is unjust, first, and of the qualifications necessary for the discharge of the to the people. Here are a handful of Christians surrounded daty here enjoined. And as the Spirit was not given to the by an increasing mass of the ignorant, the erroneous, and the apostles, prelates, or presbyters as a distinct class, and to the wicked. No one will deny that it is of the last importance exclusion of others, so neither was the commission which that the gospel should be regularly administered among them. was founded on the gift of the Spirit confined to them. The This is demanded not only for the benefit of those few Chrispower, the duty, and the promise of the Spirit all go to tians, but for the instruction and conversion of the surroundgether. Unless, therefore, we adopt the Romish doctrine ing population. Now, is it just that the burden of supporting that the Spirit was given to the apostles as a distinct and self- the ministry, under these circumstances, should be thrown experpetuating order in the Church, to flow mechanically clusively on that small and feeble company of believers ? through the channel of that succession, a living stream Are they alone interested in the support and extension of the through a dead body, we must admit that the commission in kingdom of Christ among them and those around them? It is question was given to the whole Church.
obvious that, on all scriptural principles, and on all principles of " The application of the Protestant doctrine just stated, to justice, this is a burden to be borne by the whole Church-by the subjec: before us, is obvious and direct. If to the Church all on whom the duty rests to uphold and propagate the gosas such and as a whole, the duty of teaching all nations bas pel of Christ. Our present system is anjust, in the second
place, towards our ministers. It is not just that one man dren. It would shed an unwonted ligat into many a houseshould be supported in affluence, and another, equally devoted hold, to hear it announced that the Presbyterian Church had to the service of the Church, left to struggle for the necessaries resolved to obey the ordinance of Christ, that they who preach of life. As before stated, we do not contend for anything so the gospel should live by the gospel. Such a resolution would chimerical as equal salaries to all ministers. Even if all re- kindle the incense in a thousand hearts, and would be abunceived from the Church as a whole the same sum, the people dant through the thanksgiving of many to the glory of God. would claim and exercise the right to give in addition what Again, this plan would secure stability, and consequent they pleased to their own pastor. We can no more make power, to the institutions of religion in a multitude of places, salaries equal, than we can make church edifices of the same where everything is now occasional, uncertain, and changing. size and cost. But while this equality is neither desirable Our Church would be thus enabled to present a firm and steadily nor practicable, it is obviously unjust that the present inordi- advancing front. Congregations too feeble to-day to support nate inequality should be allowed to continue. The hardship the gospel at all, would soon become, under the steady culture falls precisely on the most devoted men-on those who strive thus afforded to them, able to aid in sustaining others. A to get along without resorting to any secular employment. new spirit of alacrity and confidence would be infused into Those who resort to teaching, farming, or speculating in land, the ministry, They would not advance with a hesitating in many cases soon render themselves independent. The step, doubtful whether those behind will uphold their hands. way to keep ministers poor, is to give them enough to live When a missionary leaves our shores for heathen lands, he upon. Observation in all parts of the country shows that it goes without any misgivings as to this point. He has no fear is the men with inadequate salaries who become rich, or at of being forgot, and allowed to struggle for his daily bread, least lay up money. It is not, therefore, because we think while
endeavouring to bring the heathen to the obedience of that the ministry as a body would have more of this world's Christ. He knows that the whole Church is pledged for his goods, if adequately supported by the Church, that we urge support, and he devotes himself to his work without distracthis plea of just compensation. It is because those who do
xiety. How different is the case with multitudes of devote themselves to their ministerial work are left to con- our missionaries at home! They go to places where much is tend with all the harassing evils of poverty, while others of to be done, where constant ministerial labour is demanded, their brethren have enough and to spare. This we regard as but they go with no assurance of support. The people whom contrary to justice, contrary to the Spirit of Christ, and the they serve may greatly need the gospel; it ought to be carexpress commands of his Word.
ried to them, and urged upon them, but they care little about Sixthly, the advantages which would be secured by this it, and are unwilling to sustain the messenger of God. The plan, are a strong argument in its favour. It would secure a Church does not charge itself with his support. It is true he great increase in the amount of time and labour devoted to is labouring in her service and in the service of her Lord; but ministerial work. We have no means of ascertaining with he is left to provide for himself, and live or starve as the case accuracy what proportion of our ministers unite with their may be. This is not the way in which a Church can be vigosacred office some secular employment, nor what proportion rously advanced. It is not the way in which Antichrist adof their time is thus diverted from their appropriate duties. vances his kingdom. No Romish priest plants a hesitating It may be that one-third or one-half of the
time of the minis- foot on any unoccupied ground. He knows he represents a try of our Church, taken as a whole, is devoted to secular Church-a body which recognises its unity, and feels its life business. If this estimate is any approximation to the truth, in all its members. Is it right that we should place the cause and it has been made by those who have had the best oppor- of Christ under such disadvantage; that we should adopt a tunity of forming a correct judgment, then the eficiency of plan of ministerial support, which of necessity makes the the ministry might be well-nigh doubled if this time could be Church most feeble at the extremities, where it ought to have redeemed from the world, and devoted to study, to pastoral most alacrity and strength ? Truly the children of this world duties, and the education of the young.
are wiser in their generation than the children of light." “ Again, it would exert a most beneficial influence on the character of the ministry. How many men, who from necessity engage in some secular work, gradually become worldly
Reviews. minded, lose their interest in the spiritual concerns of the Church, and come to regard their ministerial duties as of The Bass Rock : Its Civil and Ecclesiastic History, secondary importance! It is a law of the human mind that it becomes assimilated to the objects to which its attention is
Geology, Martyrology, Zoology, and Botany." principally directed. It is almost impossible for a minister, We know not where the story is told; but they say whose time is mainly devoted to worldly business, to avoid becoming more or less a worldly man. A very respectable
that Linnæus was trying to enlist as a student of clergyman, advanced in life, who had felt this difficulty, re- nature a friend who objected the scanty domain of cently said, there was nothing about which he was more de the science, -—“Sweden did not afford a ffield suffi. termined than that, if he had his life to live over again, he cient for research;" and that, placing his hand on the would never settle in a congregation that did not support him. turf where they sat, the sage replied, “Beneath that It is very hard to draw the line between gaining a support palm there is labour for a life-time.” Besides and making money. It is difficult to discriminate in practice between what is proper, because necessary, and what all admit
earth and chips of stone, they found in that little to be derogatory to the ministerial character. How often inch half a-dozen species of plants, and a still does it happen that the desire of wealth insinuates itself into greater variety of insects. And now that knowledge the heart, under the guise of the desire for an adequate sup has increased, we are falling rapidly back on the port! Without the slightest impeachment of any class of our principle which Linnæus then hinted. In order to they are like other men and other ministers, it is obvious that be original, or interesting, or inventive, we must the necessity of devoting a large part of their
time to secular take for the text a leaf, a pebble, or a worm, and employment, is injurious both to their own spiritual interests show the great wonders which Infinite Wisdom has and to their usefulness. Everything, indeed, depends upon locked up in things little and despised. the motive with which this is done. If done as a matter of Solomon was the first of philosophers; and one self-denial, in order to make the gospel of Christ without charge, its influence will be salutary; but, if done from any great Creator was, that he had an eye for the feeble
way in which he showed bis sympathy with the leanness into the soul. It can hardly, therefore, be doubted and minute. He spoke of the hyssop as well as the that few things, under God, would' more directly tend to
cedar; and the readers of Proverbs remember how exalt the standard of ministerial character and activity in our kindly and knowingly he talked of the ant and the Church, than a provision of an adequate support for every coney. And nothing shows more strikingly the pastor devoted to his work. How many of our most deserving march of recent science than the multiplication of brethren would the execution of this plan relieve from anxiety monographs, and the number devoted to objects in, and; want! Many of them are now without the ordinary conspicuous or obscure. Most people are acquainted comforts of life, harassed by family cares, oppressed with diffículty as to the means of supporting and educating their chil
• Edinburgh, 1848.
with some sort of moss; they have seen it on wall. I had he been a lover of nature and been allowed no tops, or by the burn-side, in their youngest summers, wider range than his sea-girt isle. So rich is Dr. they have filled their pinafores with “fog," and Balfour's literary store and so bright his poetic even Londoners will recognise it in the ready-made fancy, that we grudge his giving the sea-weeds the nests which they purchase for sky.larks in cages.go-bye, and would fain bave kept him company But well as the world is acquainted, in a general another hour whilst in the vein which described the way, with the “Musci” family, few can say that nettle and the composite flowers. And the affluent they have ever seen their less illustrious cousins, the science which Dr. Fleming has expended on the gan“Jungermanniæ.” And yet the most exquisite net, awakens a regret that the same pen had not done monographs of illustrated Botany, are the volumes similar justice to the other feathery natives of the in which Sir W. Hooker has revealed these tiny cliff. And then there were the crabs and other natives of our British Flora. And so with many crustaceans which lurk among the submerged subjects in the animal kingdom. We have books of rocks, and the finny tribes which the foresaid consummate beauty devoted to the minims of crea- Baldred might have ensnared for purposes curious tion, and to those still obscurer organizations which or culinary. And are there no insects ? - no science was the first to name.* The existence of strong-winged butterflies, nor adventurous beetles, such treatises shows how exact observation has be
which have colonized the guano or the herbage ? come, and how abundant knowledge is. And here, Are the twenty sheep the only quadrupeds ? Are in a new department, comes this "Book of the Bass," there no mice, nor shrews, nor moles? Perhaps not; -five "sermous " from a single “stone"-to show and even the rats which must have landed long ago how far behind we have left the days when Raleigh may have left it again; but all this we should have could only spin into three volumes the entire story liked to learn. We know that the Bass is not so of the world. +
singular in its Flora as St. Helena; and even though A most pleasant device this book has been as the eye which watched the rooks of Selborne so original as it is sure of instant imitation. Adopting leisurely and lovingly, had gazed on solan geese Mr. Crawford's idea, we shall be favoured next
and guillemots, it might not have been able equally twelvemonth with monographs on every island, rock, to entrance the reader: still, we repeat, with oband skerry in the sea, from“ Iona by five Authors,"
servers so gifted, the Rock would have repaid more and "The Pentateuch of Patmos," down to “The Pics frequent visits, and the reader would have sparNic of five-and-forty Cockneys in the Isle of Dogs" doned a longer tale. And if we were only sure that every subject would We never tire of the story which Dr. M'Crie is be as worthy, and handled with similar heartiness, telling. Brimming with ancestral lore, his learning we should not grudge how many books we got on never makes him pedantic nor prolix; and keeping the model of “the Bass,” any more than we would stedfastly in view high principles and a noble purgrudge how many profited by another good idea, and pose, he relieves the severity of history with most copied Mr. Landsborough’s “ Arran.” But it is be delightful details. He is a cheerful man on an imcause we are so fearful that the copies will be bad, portant errand; and whilst he keeps a careful lookand because, in these times when hares are pro- out and a firm hold of his despatches, he beguiles tected, and those feræ naturæ, an author's fancies, are the road with endless episodes of mirth and curious promiscuous property, we are so accustomed to see a tradition. Amidst all its gaiety, he has filled his happy title or a good idea hunted down--it is for the portion of the rock with that rare and instructive insake of the public and our authors, that we print our formation which few possess in equal abundance timely warning, and advertize the world that no with himself. book can be so red, and no island so green, as this When Cowper asked for a poetic theme, Lady Bass which begins the series.
Austin prescribed the sofa; and Cowper took it, and The project of such a book occurred to an amiable wrote the best didactic poem in our English speech. and accomplished gentleman who has taken no share Hugh Miller was not asking for a geologic theme in its immediate authorship; but the subject was so when a friend prescribed the Bass; but, taking both felicitous that it seems to have seized the fancy, and text and topic, he has produced the most perfect gem winged the pen of each contributor. Mr. Anderson which the rocky science hitherto has yielded. We could not have examined documents, nor compiled say nothing of the diction so beautiful and strong, so his facts more scrupulously, nor Dr. M'Crie told his
easy, yet so precise; nor of the investigations and changeful story with more pleasantry and pathos, inferences so ingenious,often so diverting, and always nor Mr. Miller planned his geologic drama more
so vivid and convincing, nor of the endless illustraskilfully, though the Bass had been the independent tions which rush around his pen from all the realm of inspiration with which some starry night had fired letters; nor of the spell which makes abstruse things each several seer. The theme has been as propitious obvious, and dull things detaining; nor of the freas it is fortunate; and whilst itself receiving ample quent sublimities which start up from the pleasant justice, it has added not a little to its authors' re
page, like his own Bass, sudden and in deep soundnown.
ings. It is not unique, for the "Old Red Sandstone” . When we arrived at the Zoology and Botany, we came before it; but it is more remarkable, because own that we should have liked a little more. With
a similar triumph in a narrower and more arduous out converting either professor into a modern Prome- field. theus, we could have wished him a longer sojourn on But after all, and as it ought to be, the staple of the rock; and if we may be allowed to state our the book is its martyrology. This has been compiled ides of a Bassian Fauna and Flora, it would have with exemplary and affectionate care by one to whom been such a book as St. Baldred might have written, their “very dust is dear;" and from the eminent tish Worthies. Many are the solemn and affecting and judges, who read a book before they condemu or thoughts which this portion suggests, and many à praise it, and to whom it would be quite terrible to time will it be re-opened by those who take pleasure contemplate even the possibility of being obliged in beholding the achievements of faith, and the love again to undertake such a task. We do hope that ing-kindness of the Lord.
names recorded--such as Hog, and Peden, and Traill, For instance, “ The Nudibranchiate Mollusca," now printing and Fraser of Brea---and from the fresh materials here for the Ray Society. The first alone was published.
collected, it makes a valuable addition to our Scot
Mr. Smith will sit quietly down, and sleep as he was wont to do, satisfying himself with the greatness he
has achieved. TRUTH AS REVEALED; or, Voluntaryism and Free This book is remarkable for its boldness-a bold
Churchism opposed to the Word of God. With an ness arising from evident ignorance and stupidity. Answer to the Protest left on the Table of the
Mr. Smith finds no difficulty; his path is smooth and General Assembly in May 1843. By the Rev. easy; his references of the most sweeping character; GEORGE SMITH, Minister of Birse.
his assertions of his peculiar principles uncompromis. This is, in many respects, an extraordinary book. ing, so far as he able to state them intelligibly. We It is extraordinary in its authorship. It is seldom do not think it possible to produce a more undisguised that a volume finds its way to the press from the up- vindication of thorough Erastianism, which goes the lands of Aberdeenshire, and Mr. Smith was scarcely length of denying all personal Christian liberty, and the man who might have been expected to break all Church freedom, and subjects every thing sacred, through the dull uniformity which had so long pre- with the most unmoved complacency, to the judgvailed. A quiet, dull, unexcitable man, who has got ments of civil tribunals. We do not believe his very, much assimilated to the barren roughness of principles are so very bad as he says they arethe region with which he is surrounded, his vocation so utterly eversive of all religion. He really does seemed to be rather to follow the plough than to not know what he has been speaking about mani wield the pen.
A man once rather addicted to evan- festly does not perceive the breadth and bearing of gelism, and the cause of Christian liberty, it might his own conclusions. He seems at times, indeed, to have been expected that, could he have been roused bave a painful consciousness, that his peculiar modes at all, it would have been to defend the principles of reasoning land him in conclusions different from he has sought to assail. We really supposed that those of all other men. At other times, however, he one grand reason why he did not attach himself soars sublimely and independently above the influto the Free Church, was just the impossibility of ence of all example and precedent, and imagines awakening him to vigorous thought or decided ac- that he differs from others solely in being more tion on any subject whatever. And it certainly serves clear-sighted than they. From this lofty elevation to show how universally and powerfully the Free he can afford to speak thus of the men who drew up, Church has pervaded and moved the whole mass of and subscribed, and adhered to the Protest : “ Men society, that it should have been able to startle Mr. whose thoughts on the subject of this great controSmith in his peaceful retreat, and arouse him to the versy have been more superficial than they might terrible exertion which this book must have cost. have been, may deem it to be unanswerable; men We can imagine the painful labour with which its whose mental powers and cultiration do not enable them successive paragraphs have been elaborated; the fe- to follow those close processes of reasoning by which the verish restlessness, and peccant humours which for distinction between truth and error is perceived, may so many months disturbed the quiescence of the be frightened at it, as, in former days, similar minds manse; the horrible indigestion, and still more hor- were frightened at Papal thunder; but those who rible dreams, which accompanied its production; the have employed close reflection in aid of their inblush of conscious demerit, mingling with the smile quiries after truth, will only disregard it. Such of gratified vanity, mantling upon the author's coun- persons know, that when brought to the severe tenance, as the sheets assumed the forms of a book, scrutiny of strict investigation, all the charges of the by the Rev. George Smith, minister of Birse--a name Protest are visionary, and rest on no better authority to be henceforth hallowed in ecclesiastical literature, than the assertion of the parties who prefer them." and to go down to posterity with the celebrated The above may be taken as a specimen of our Protest, which it so easily and triumphantly answers. author. In the above sentences, there are at least This, if we mistake not, is Mr. Smith's niaiden pro- three classes of men who are characterized as, duction, at least we would scarcely except this same from their mental powers and cultivation, unable to book published as a pamphlet; for Mr. Smith, like follow close processes of reasoning. First, then, are our greatest ecclesiastics, has elaborated this master- those who were concerned in drawing up and siguing piece by slow degrees. Luther's Commentary on the Protest, and who, doubtless, thought it unanswer the Galatians was a small affair as it first appeared, able, including such men as Dr. Chalmers, Dr. Welsh, and grew into its present magnitude and perfection Dr. Gordon, Dr. Cunningham, Dr. Candlish, Sir through successive editions. Calvin's Institutes was D. Brewster, Mr. Dunlop, &c. But this is nothing, at first a very brief summary of principles, and as- and might be excusable in a juvenile author shaking sumed its more enlarged and perfect form only by off and trampling upon his opponents. Mr. Smith careful revision and elaboration. Mr. Smith's Truth does not rest here; he brings the same accusation as Revealed, was originally a sixpenny pamphlet; it against the assembled wisdom of the Establishment. has grown to an octavo volume. It may fairly be They did take up the Protest--appointed a committee regarded as his first production. We earnestly hope to answer it-received several answers-found all it will be his last; for it would be painful to think answers unsatisfactory-virtually confessed it to be that any more of the same kind of stuff should be unanswerable— were so frightened at it, as never to voided upon the public. We do not say this so much ask for the report of their own committee; and for the sake of the public, who, we presume, do not Mr. Smith infers that, by so acting, their mental trouble themselves very much about the matter, as powers and cultivation do not enable them to follow for our own, and that of other conscientious critics close processes of reasoning. And, worst of all, Mr. • Edinburgh: Myles Macphail. 1847.
Smith brings an equally heavy charge against him