Page images
PDF
EPUB

those who wish to learn the secret of growth in holiness, read Marshall's “ Gospel Mystery of Sanctification Opened in Sundry Practical Directions,-a book of which a good spiritual judge has said, “ Was I to be banished into some desolate island, possessed only of two books, besides my Bible, this should be one of the two, perhaps the first that I should choose.” Both Marshall and Hervey, like every human author, need to be read with can. tion ; but they have well laid the foundation, and this is the great matter. Dr. Hook's little tract contains one hundred and ninetees questions as heads of Examination. But how many of them have reference to Christ? Why, just one, and no more.—(“ Hare I thought on the sacrifice offered by our blessed Lord on the cross for my sins ?') But we have many to the following effect—“ Do I observe regularly the Fasts of the Church ?-Have I been constant at Church ?-Have I spoken lightly of holy men ? of God's House and Service ? of his blessed Sacraments ? and other holy things! --Have I attended the Church Services regularly? If prevented from doing so, have I said the prayers at home? Have I felt and shown respect to my spiritual superior teacher ? and to all who are placed above me?-Were the hours of prayer duly kept today ? " &c. There are no doubt many more, important enough -others as trivial—and Dr. H. may remind us that much is implied. Yes; but what is implied is what should be prominent and open the whole, blend with and sum up the whole. But all is assumed, and hence the main article of Examination (2 Cor. xin. 5,) is wholly omitted, or, if referred to, it is only thus. “ Regard thy soul as if it were a house which thou dost wish to cleanse from all impurity, that therein thy Saviour Christ may continue his abode, ('Know ye not that Christ is in you, except ye be reprobate?') and that thou mayest be a temple of the Holy Ghost." Again, one of the questions is—" Have I remembered that my body is the temple of the Holy Ghost ?But then there is in all this, we repeat, much dangerous assumption, seriously defective and perilous teaching. We do not say that Dr. Hook is wishing to prepare the way for the Confessional. We hope not; but not. withstanding the admission that “ the Church does not require confession to man," we must say that teaching like this appears to us the high road to it, and if it do not lead to blind formalism, must throw many perplexed souls into the hands of the Confessor. There is much significance in the concluding passage :

“If thy conscience is scrupulous, or thy difficulties many—or if thou canst not trust to thine own judgment in the direction of thy soul-or thou wantest sympathy or help to quiet thy conscience-if thou wantest comfort or coun

· Hervey, in his Theron and A spasio.

sel, then she (the Church) would send thee to some learned and discreet Minister of God's Word to open thy grief: that by the Ministry of God's Holy Word, thou mayest receive the benefit of absolution, together with ghostly comfort and advice, to the quieting of thy conscience, and the avoiding of all scruple and doubtfulness."

A passage much akin to that of Archdeacon Manning : “ We have the more need of this sacred discipline of self, because we have few aids and helps of a secondary sort. They are not many who have the blessing of being subject to any proximate superior, to any rule out of themselves, by which the detail of their life is ordered. Man is therefore thrown upon the energy of the indivi. dual will. The need of some imposed discipline, which shall bear upon the actings of our carnal nature, is wonderfully attested by the yearnings of thoughtful men at this time: on every side we hear them painfully striving to free themselves from the bondage of unmeaning and artificial habits, and to find some basis on which they may rest the full weight of their living powers. This has grown upon them, more and more, ever since the current of the world turned aside from the path of the Catholic Church.” (Sermons, 1844, p. 144.) It is not easy to understand all this mysticism, but its tendency none can doubt. It has already lodged not a few (as the Archdeacon and Dr. Hook well know) in the bosom of Rome.

Our notice has lengthened on our hands; but these specimens of Anglo-catholic teaching ought not we think, to be overlooked. We have no wish to be uncharitable (alas, we have erred too far from that side !)—but we have a strong impression that the plaguespot is upon us to an extent which but few dream of.

CORRESPONDENCE.

TO THE EDITOR OF THE CHURCHMAN'S MONTHLY REVIEW, SIR,–Mr. Faber's Note respecting me in your last Number renders it necessary that I should address a few lines to you in reply and explanation. My absence from England is the reason of my not having done this in time for your Number next ensuing.

It is a subject of much regret to me that I should have misrepresented Mr. Faber's opinion on the point to which his Note refers ; viz. the commencing date of the 1290 days, as compared with those of Daniel's two other associated periods of the 1260 days and the 1335. But when he says that it is upon the strength of this utter misrepresentation that I gravely pronounce him to have written, in my opinion, most inconsistently,” he must forgive my saying that I think him mistaken; and that the corrected and accurate version of his solution of the periods is precisely as obnoxious to the charge of inconsistency made by me, as the partially inaccurate version of it given in my Note in the Hore.

For, with reference to these three periods named by Daniel in his chapter xii. verses 7, 11, 12, it seems to me required by consistency that an expositor shall either make all the three date from a common commencing epoch, so that the 1290 days shall be but a brief prolongation of the 1260 by 30 days' addition; and the 1335 but a brief prolongation of the 1290 by the addition of yet 45 days more; or, if he prefer to make the whole 1335 an entirely new period, to be measured from the termination of either of the other two, then that those other two periods should be also dated the one from the termination of the other, on the same principle. The former is the view taken by myself, in common with the generality of expositors; the latter by Mr. Faber. For he makes the 1335 days an entirely new period, to be measured from the end of the 1260. But what then of the 1290 days' period? Is the 1260 to begin from the end of the 1290, as the 1335 from the end of the 1260 ? Not so in Mr. Faber's scheme. They are not indeed to have a common connecting date, so as I inadvertently stated in my Note, and thus to run parallel all their length. But the 1260 is to begin nearly at the halfway of the 1290; and thus the first half, or somewhat more, of the 1260 to run parallel with the last half, or somewhat more of the 1290. For Mr. Faber's 1290 years ranges from 70 to 1360 A.D.; his 1260 from A.D. 604 to 1864; while his

pentirely new pero, then thatermination poken by mysel. Faber.

prith the generalise days an entirely what then of the 1290, as i

1335, commencing from 1865, runs on to 3200 A.D. Why the 1290 years' period should be placed first in chronology, when in Daniel's prophetic statements it stands second ; and why it should be dissociated altogether from the 1335 years' period, when in Daniel it seems to be so directly and closely associated with it, are further questions wbich of course will suggest themselves to the reflective reader. But with them I am not at present concerned.

With regard to what Mr. F. adds respecting other inaccuracies of statement in the notices of his prophetic scheme given in my first edition, and the apology offered by me for them, I too must beg to add a word. Hearing of his complaint on this head against me, I drew up and sent him a list of all the places in which I could find that he had been quoted or referred to in that edition of the Horæ. The number was between sixty and seventy ; and out of these Mr. Faber wrote me back that there were inaccuracies in, I think, seven. One or two were inaccuracies in trifles. Of the remainder the most important were, as I remember, the three following:-1, that on the sixth Trumpet I alluded to him as not making the loosing of the four angels from the Euphrates synchronize in date with that of the sixth Trumpet's sounding, or of the commencement of the hour and day and month and year period, whereas in reality he does make those epochs synchronize ;2. that in regard of the Beast I spoke of him as making its seventh head to be the Latin empire begun by Charlemagne, whereas he explains it of Napoleon's empire ;—and 3. that in stating him to make the Beast's image mean the images of the saints throughout Papal Christendom, I did not add, as I ought, that he explains the genitive in that phrase, the Beast's image, to signify simply that the images were the property of the Beast, not his likeness or representation. Mr. Faber speaks, in his Note, of the “ absurdities” thus liberally but unjustly ascribed to him. Absurdities is a word that I should not have wished to use with reference to such opinions of Mr. Faber's as I might deem erroneous. But certainly I think that in all these three cases the correction detracts as little from the unreasonableness of his interpretation as in the case of that of Daniel's three periods first referred to. It was my original purpose, I may observe, to have noted in my second edition on each occasion the inaccuracy I had fallen into in my first. But when I considered that the more accurate version of Mr. F.'s opinions had still to be objected to by me, just as before, it seemed scarcely worth the while : nor did my second Preface, or my general notice of Mr. Faber's Exposition, at the close of my History of Apocalyptic Interpretation, vol. iv. p. 475, appear to me, under those circumstances, to furnish a better opportunity. Besides which Mr. Faber had himself, in his last publication on prophecy, proclaimed aloud the inaccuracies, and so rendered any such intention on my part less necessary. Hence the tacit correction of them in my second edition of which his Note complains.

In conclusion let me be permitted to say, though by no means wishing to defend any of my incorrectnesses, yet that I think the multitude of the references made in my work, amounting as they do to many thousands, and its weight and press of matter, might fairly seem to a kind and candid reader to furnish a claim on his indulgence, in the case of inaccuracies on points of less moment cursorily glanced at; especially under the circumstance mentioned by me to Mr. Faber, of the author having been frequently called away from his books, during both its composition and its printing, by heavy family afflictions.“ Humanum est errare.” Almost at the same time that Mr. Faber's complaint of my having misrepresented him was brought under my notice, I was also led to notice a very serious misrepresentation of myself made by Dr. Candlish in his Pamphlet : even as if I had all but violated good faith in connecting together two extracts from King Edward's Catechism, as speaking of one and the same Church : whereas an intervening extract showed that the Church of the latter was quite different from that of the former. It needs but to mark the language of the intervening extract, given in Dr. C.'s own Pamphlet, to see that the mistake is altogether with him, not me. The inadvertence on his part is the more remarkable, as the whole tone nearly of his Pamphlet, as well as the whole character of the man, is good evidence that it was with no mere professed and mock sorrow, bat with real sorrow of feeling, that he made the charge.

But I am occupying more of your space than I intended, and must conclude. I am, Sir, with much respect, yours faithfully, Lausanne, Oct. 31, 1846.

E. B. ELLIOTT.

I Mark the words in the intervening extract ; “ Canst thou yet further depaint me out that congregation which thou callest a kingdom or commonweal of Christians, * Is it possible that such language can mean any other than the “ cougregation," called by the writer also “ a kingdom and holy commonwealth," in the preceding extract; that is, in my first extract?

« PreviousContinue »