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unsuited it is to the thought of to-day. It seeks to hold to the form of the dogma, while it changes entirely its contents. It would be glad to accept the Liberal theology if it should come from some other source than from these despised sects against which it has fought. It does not wish to adopt the thoughts of its enemies. And Liberal Christianity is not yet strong enough, like the Romans, to impose its own ideas on realms it has conquered. Where shall authority be found for changing the contents of the dogma ?
This is found in the Greek Theology. As the discovery of the Greek literature gave food to the growing mind of the Middle Ages, so the theology of the Greek Fathers seems to be able to give food to the theological mind of to-day. For the spirit of Greek theology is suited to the needs of to-day and expands with the needs of all future thought. it is a spiritual theology and is in direct opposition to the mechanical and legal theories of the Latin and modern Orthodox theology.
It is our purpose in this paper to direct the thought of our theologians to this field of enterprise. It lias rewarded the search of many scholars. The Ancient History of Universalism, The Church of the First Three Centuries by Dr. Lamson, Dr. Beecher's Scriptural Doctrine of Retribution, and similar works owe much of their interest to researches in this field. But very few works with which we are acquainted consider the contrast between the fundamental ideas of the Greek and Latin theologies. Among those that have come under our notice is an essay entitled, “ The Two Religions," in Dr. Hedge's Ways of the Spirit. Dr. Mulford's “ Republic of God” is the Greek theology come to the world again. But the most notable publication on this subject is the “ Theological Renaissance of the Nineteenth Century,” found in the Princeton Review of November, 1882, and January,1883. In these articles the contrast between the spiritual Greek and the legal Latin theologies is clearly and forcibly drawn. It is to invite attention to this contrast, to show that the spirit of the Greek theology is what is needed to-day to burst the bonds of mediæval the
ology and destroy the incongruity that exists between Orthodoxy and the thought of the nineteenth century, that we introduce to the readers of the QUARTERLY an extract from Prof. Allen's article :
“ The idea of God, as seen in the earlier Greek theology, is that of a being whose presence pervades the world, and with whose essential nature man has a constitutional kinship or relation. In the Western Church of the third century, represented by Tertullian and Cyprian, the idea of God was that of a being apart from the world, governing it from a distance, and communicating with it through agencies which had no essential connection with Him beyond His formal and arbitrary appointment. If we compare the two theologies which grew out of such widely differing motives, we shall see at once how on every point they reflect the divergence of their origin. The Greeks conceived God as pure spirit, and aimed to keep their ideal free from the grosser conceptions of anthropomor. phism ; while the Latins, notably Tertullian, thought of God as existing in a human form. With the Greeks revelation in its larger aspects was not limited to the Christian and Jewish dispensations, but all truth, wherever found, was lield as com, ing from God, and even heathen philosophers, inspired by Him, had, in their own way and place, contributed to the preparation for Christianity which constituted the fulness of time. Revelation was, therefore, a living process, superintended by a divine and ever-present teacher, who spoke to men made in the Divine image and constituted for truth, while human reason, conscience, and experience, were the ordained channels for its reception.
66 Among the Latins philosophy and human reason were regarded with distrust, as sources of heresy, and revelation became a mechanical method of communication, more particularly defined as a deposit embodied in a rule of faith, whose integrity was guaranteed by bishops in apostolic descent. Ac. cording to Greek theology, the Logos, the Divine Word, in whose image man was made, had always been present in human !istory, and thus foreshadowed the incarnation of the Divine in the human, when God should be manifest in the flesh in all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. With the Latins his coming bad been as abrupt as his departure had been complete, and, instead of a present Christ still guiding the education of human souls, was a last will and testament,
of which the episcopate was the executor and administrator. In the Greek theology man's position, here or hereafter, was necessarily conditioned by his moral state: with the Latins it did not seem unreasonable that Divine decrees proceeding from an absolute sovereign, should operate to fix the condition of man, apart from all moral considerations. With the Greeks the Church represented humanity in its ideal state, a body whose limits could not be defined ; the sacraments were symbols of that eternal life in Christ which God was always giving to men ; the resurrection was the standing up again in life of those who had left the tenement of flesh. The Latin Church identified the visible organization with the body of Christ; the sacraments took on a magical character, and, ceasing to be symbols of a process, became the exclusive channels through which Divine grace was mediated to man; and the resurrection of the body was interpreted as the rising again out of the grave of the same body which had been decomposed and seen eorruption. Eternal life was regarded by the Greeks as consisting in an ethical and spiritual relationship with God; as, in the words of St. John, “This is life eternal, to know Thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom Thou hast sent'; and the loss of this knowledge, in which was life, constituted eternal death. To the Latin mind eternal life became a synonym for endless duration of existence in a state of bliss, and its converse became also the endless duration of existence in a state of misery. It is doubtful whether any of the Greek Fathers before the middle of the fifth century accepted what has been known in Latin theology as the doctrine of endless punishment."
From these extracts, which are a fair sample of the conclusions reached in these articles, it can easily be seen that this is a fruitful field that will repay the diligent working of our scholars. It can also be easily seen that the Universalist Church is a revival of the earliest Christian theology, before it was corrupted by the coarse ideas of the barbarians.
Rev. T. C. Druley.
Methodism as a Sensation.
With the approach of the centennial General Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and the discussion of proposed changes, a renewed interest is felt in that body of Christians. Methodism has been the religious sensation of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, and for this time the chief religious force; and a great question for the Church Universal is whether it can continue so for another century; and, if not, what is to be the next sensation ? Some great agitation must ever stir the people to keep them as a whole interested in religion. Great movements each cause an intense interest ; and no movement is greater than the gathering of a new generation into religion. Organization can do much for this, and the Roman and other churches are gathering, or rather keeping, those born within their folds, while a certain class of religiously inclined (who scarcely need a religion) also do something to keep up a continuity in the stream of Christianity. But these sources will furnish but a sickly current unless some sensational movement sweep in the masses. This movement in Protestant Christianity has been, for a century and a half, Methodism; and Methodism seems the only adequate movement for the future ; although for such adequacy certain changes seem necessary.
There are obvious reasons why Methodism should havė succeeded as a two-century sensation. Not considering now the truths and benefits involved, except as incidentally implied in the fact of its success, we find Methodism offering several remarkable agencies for getting up and keeping up a profound religious interest.
The revival, with which its name is almost synonymous, is the chief of these. With its intense excitement and sensa tional scenes — shouting, loud praying, and other startling noises - the revival must ever arrest attention, especially among the lower and least interested classes. Those who
cannot see a theological distinction can yet hear a shout; and those who will not give attention to religion will stop to look at an excited assembly. Men ever rush where deep feeling is manifested, and, as sympathy is contagious, many who go for the amusement are drawn into the interest.
The lively singing, also, of new and changing tunes, made stirring by direct personal application, has had, in connection with the revivals mentioned, a great drawing and holding power. Methodisın has sung its way to success. Teaching Christianity to sing in popular airs, it has taught all the world to sing in religious airs; and songs sung in such great volume became part of the people's life. Methodism rescued music from the few, and set it, like every other interest, in democratic relations. It made the songs of the world, whicl, has been pronounced a greater achievement than to make the laws; and it has received the harvest of those songs. Stamping Christianity as a singing religion, it transferred it largely from old and wise heads to children and the common masses, where it could spread with uninterrupted rapidity.
The vigorous preaching of Methodism, stirring, loud and cxcited, filled with personal and experimental anecdotes, also contributed largely to its success as a sensation. Equal to stump oratory or the popular lecture in interest, it attracted attention as an entertainment from those who cared nothing for it as a service. Methodism got a hearing which other religions did not. It bombarded the ears of the world, and compelled the nineteenth century to listen. For the first time men heard preaching as an amusement, and learned to need it as a gratification ; and in time the appeal to curiosity was felt in the conscience.
The bringing of the whole people into activity in religious service as never before, also contributed to give Methodism a sensational impulse. Instead of one man the priest, or preacher — doing all, and the rest being quiet listeners, or only occasionally heard in perfunctory ritual, the entire congregation participated, from the man who could only say “ Amen” to the exhorter who occasionally took the pulpit. NEW SERIES. VOL. XX.