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sufficiently explained. It is a matter of reasonable apprehension lest it should tempt many a soul, that might have been anxious, to become dead and careless, and perhaps to lose itself eternally. It is strange, but true, that what we have been able to learn, directly or indirectly, concerning Universalists, does not represent them as attaining to that cheerfulness which their creed would, if heartily accepted and thoroughly believed in, seem to warrant. But our experience is limited, and we fully admit that such a creed (utterly false and soul-perilling as we believe it to be) may have peculiar attractions, as for particular times and climes, even so too for persons of a certain bodily temperament. All circumstances-our century, our country, our social position, our physical constitution, our pecuniary means, and many more—are a part of that dispensation in which God has placed us, and each single one may be sanctified or may become a snare.
'I went,' says one of the most brilliant of living American authors—'I went to a Universalist church,
when I was in the city one day, to hear a famous man, whom - all the world knows; and I never saw such pews-full of broad shoulders and florid faces, and substantial wholesome-looking persons, male and female, in all my life. Why, it was astonishing. Either their creed made them healthy, or they chose • it because they were healthy.'
Most thoroughly do we believe in the literal truth of this description. The seeming alternatives suggested by the author need not necessarily contradict each other. In such cases there is mostly something of action and of reaction. The persons by whose external appearance the Professor was so much struck had, very probably, been greatly influenced in their choice by yielding to the special temptations incident to the possession of strong health and easy circumstances. And then, in turn, their creed may have certainly done its part in assisting to keep them so. But, alas for that Gospel whose invitations are specially addressed to such a class alone! It is not, it cannot be, the Gospel of Christ. In far other strains sound forth its warning voice: • Woe unto you that are rich ! for ye have received your conso' lation. Woe unto you that are full! for ye shall hunger. Woe "unto you that laugh now ! for ye
shall mourn and weep. . : . And when He had opened the book, He found the place where
it was written, The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because He . hath anointed me to preach the Gospel to the poor ; He hath sent me to heal the broken-hearted, to preach deliverance to
the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at ‘liberty them that are bruised, to preach the acceptable year of
1 • Elsie Venner,' by Oliver Wendell Holmes, p. 281 (London: Routledge, 1861).
* the Lord.'1 Why in that Universalist congregation were there
This world's turmoil ;
Through pain or toil.' Supported by the authority of God's Word, and of His Holy Church throughout the world, it is the duty of those who can influence religious, and all other, thought, each in his own sphere, and so far as his voice may reach, to denounce Universalism as a false and miserable delusion, opposed to the facts of nature and to the voice of the wise and good of all ages, injurious to the work of the Holy Spirit, and fraught with most alarming danger to the souls for whom Christ died.
But one thing we must in fairness grant to it; and that is, that it comes at least as an open foe, and undisguised. Face to face it stands against the dogma of everlasting loss to the obdurate and impenitent, and proclaims that they shall all alike, sooner or later, take their places among the redeemed. There is at least no mistaking this language. As S. Jerome puts the case in powerful language: "The virgin and irrepentant harlot ; • she of a life of public scandal, and the Mother of the Lord; • Satan, and the Archangel Gabriel ; the Apostles, and the devils;
the Prophets, and the false prophets; the Martyrs, and their persecutors--all are ultimately to enjoy a similar lot. How long distant may be the epoch matters
not : redouble the years and seasons, and even let there be much suffering—it is all as one in the end. The question is not what we have been, but
what we shall be for eternity.'? Either all this is true, or Universalism is false. If any single created being, the rebel arch
1 S. Luke vi. 24, 25; iv. 17-19. On the former of these passages (perhaps on the latter also), we know of few more powerful comments than the American poem of 'Two Millions.' The latter is admirably illustrated by Ary Scheffer's beautiful picture of Christus Consolator.
: S. Hieron : Comment. in cap. iii. Jonæ. (Cit. ap. Passaglia, p. 42). We have only given a rude paraphrase.
angel or the traitor apostle, be left out from the supposed restitution, then that restitution is not universal, and those who proclaimed it have taught falsely.
No wonder that some of the recent impugners of the doctrine of an eternity of woe should shrink from such an extreme as the counter-doctrine which S. Jerome thus portraye. But then the question arises, if they do not teach Universalism, what do they teach? And to this query we find it wellnigh impossible to return a reply. There is the teaching of the Church, not pretending to say who or how many may be lost, nor the precise nature or place of their sufferings, but believing that all punishment will be meted out by One who is infinitely just; that the репа
be varied as God sees fit in each case, and in some cases (as that of unbaptized infants) be wholly wanting; and that the poena damni, felt more or less acutely by all who have rejected grace in proportion to the amount of guilt incurred, may probably be inappreciable to these infants who may not be suffered to know what they have lost. And if the whole be still a great mystery, this is only in accordance with the entire dispensation of things, a dispensation which must needs in this life be but very partially and imperfectly understood.
Now, we should certainly have imagined that this doctrine and the doctrine of Universalism formed a case of what logicians call
excluded middle. Either all will ultimately be saved, or all will not ultimately be saved. Universalists affirm the former position : the overwhelming majority of all who profess and call themselves Christians' (to say nothing of Jews, Mohammedans, Brahmins, and pious heathens) assert the latter. Is there any intermediate position that is intelligible or in anywise conceivable? We must avow that we cannot perceive it.
Of course, as in duty bound, we have tried our best to make out the tenets of those who oppose this dogma. First and foremost stands the distinguished-in many respects the most justly distinguished—name of Mr. Maurice. We all know that, in some way, he dissents from the Church's doctrine as ordinarily understood. But can any one inform us what is his positive teaching on this head? We have looked at Bishop Ellicott, who
1 Ignis æternus cujusmodi sit, et in quâ mundi vel rerum parte futurus sit, hominem scire arbitror neminem, nisi forte cui spiritus divinus ostendit.-S. Aug. de Civ. Dei xx. 16. A well-known passage, and generally accepted. See Peter Lombard, Dist. iv. 44.
2 This seems the natural, as it is certainly the usual, interpretation of S. Luke xii. 47, 48. See e.g. S. Basil as cit in loc in the Catena Aurea. As in what immediately follows the writer may seem to be weaving a theory in order to meet recent objections, it may be as well to say that he has simply followed the line of thought suggested by Aquinas.
warns and reproves Mr. Maurice; at a writer in the · Tracts for Priests and People,' who warmly sympathizes with lim; at the National Review for January, 1863, which thrusts him on one side. No one of these writers pretends to be clear about Mr. Maurice's meaning. Bishop Ellicott is obliged to add : 'If I rightly understand a sentence somewhat long and embarrassed, the meaning seems to be,"? &c. We shall wait till he has made his meaning clear.
Of other writers opposed to us (as the two above mentioned, and the author of Forgiveness after Death,') and of Bishop Colenso, we feel it a duty to speak plainly; for the subject is too serious to admit of vain compliments, or of personalities uttered for the mere sake of controversial rivalry. Unfortunately, we have not time left us for a detailed examination, but a few words must be said concerning each.
The remarks in Tract No. 5 for Priests and People, by the Rev. C. P. K., do seem to us (let what abatement is thought proper on the score of our prejudice be duly made) to be
superlatively weak. We are told, for instance, that the whole subject is involved in the deepest mystery, Who ever doubted this? But so is the doctrine of the Holy Trinity; so also that of the Incarnation and of our Redemption through Christ. The question is not, Is this mysterious ? but, Is it true? If to say that a doctrine is mysterious is equivalent to an insinuation that it is untrue, it would be much simpler to say at once that revealed truth has no existence : for, from first to last, it is all involved in the deepest mystery.
But a great deal resolves itself into sensible imagery.' Undoubtedly : there is no other method of conveying truth to our minds. Modern philology has wellnigh demonstrated that in every language all mental ideas must needs be expressed by words originally applied to the things of sense. Sir W. Hamilton has pointed out that in Greek, Latin, German, English, Hebrew, and Sanscrit, the word for soul comes from roots signifying breath, wind, air. He did not mean thereby to insinuate the non-existence of the soul. If we believe in Heaven, which S. John describes in the sublime book which closes the Canon by terms drawn from objects of earthly splendour; if the New Jerusalem does not resolve itself into earthly imagery’in such wise as to fade away, how dare we cease to believe in hell because its existence is announced in a similar manner ?
1 Destiny of theCreature,' p. 159. It is only fair to quote also some words, with which we fully sympathize :- It is easy to understand how a writer, whose "heart is so truly wide, and whose sympathies are so noble and generous, should 'have been led into unguarded statements upon this momentous subject. Such
however, not the less to be deplored.' 2 • Lectures on Metaphysics,' vol. i. pp. 134, 135.
We had fully intended to go step by step through the arguments of the other writers alluded to. The tone of the Tract
Forgiveness after Death' must be very highly commended. It is certainly most charitable and temperate ; yet we cannot help wishing that both this writer and the author of the able article in the National Review had studied more deeply and extensively before committing their thoughts to print. We must frankly own to some surprise at the slenderness of the apparatus with which these clever and really earnest thinkers have undertaken to demolish the toils of ages.
We had also intended to consider at length the causes of the present state of feeling on these subjects: they are numerous and somewhat complex. At present we must content ourselves with remarking that we believe that many of the impugners of this solemn and awing dogma would be among the first to recoil from the results of their own teaching, if that teaching were once received on anything like an extensive scale. Was there no connexion between the denial of heli and its semi-realization upon earth, for a brief space, during the Reign of Terror in Paris under Robespierre ? On this point it is well to reflect upon the following very thoughtful remarks of Balmes :
These reflections upon the nature of the development of the human mind in this century, and the ideas wbich have arisen touching the eternity of future punishment, are susceptible of being applied to many analogous subjects. Man has imagined that he could change and modify the Divine laws in the same way that he does those of human legislation ; and thus, he has undertaken to introduce into the sentences of the Supreme Judge the same softness that he has given to those of earthly judges. The whole system of criminal legislation tends evidently towards the diminution of punishments—making them less afflictive, depriving them of all their horror, and economizing the suffering of mankind to the utmost. More or less, all of us who live in this age are affected by this softness ; the penalty of death, stripes, all that conveys any notion of horror or suffering, is to us insupportable ; and all the efforts of philosophy are required, and all the counsellings of prudence, to preserve in our criminal codes any vigorous punishments whatever. Far be it from me to uppose this current ; and woulà to God it were now needless for the good order and government of society to cause to be shed blood or tears! But it is requisite that this exaggerated sentimentalism should not be abused ; that it should be observed that all is not philanthropy that hides itself beneath this veil, and that it should not be forgotten, that well-founded humanity is something more noble and elevated than that egotistic and weakly sentiment which will not permit us to see others suffer, because our feeble organization compels us to participate in their pains. A person is horrified at the sight of a destitute fellow-creature, but he has a sufficiently hard heart to refuse him the smallest alms. What in such a case are his sensi. bility and humanity? The first, an effect of physical organization ; the second, pure egotism.'
* This present century is so accustomed to excuse the crime, and interest itself in the criminal, that it entirely forgets the compassion which, on certainly more just grounds, is due to the victim; and would with all