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ply design, however slow and apparently wasteful the process may be. This position is ably defended, and the conclusion reached that purpose is the expression of causality, which is always and everywhere energizing. The last lecture brings into view man's personality as a being of pure affections, high instincts, supersensuous cravings, and deep-seeing intuitions, and it is argued that while the moral law alone could not prove the existence of God, it obliges us to invest the Infinite Spirit, if existent, with the predicate of righteousness. The moral constitution of man must have its ground in the Eternal Spirit from which we draw our existence, and God is therefore a God of righteousness. Some incidental observations follow on the possibility of human freedom, which is conferred because God vacates in respect to man his own free initiative; on the necessity of thinking that God is love, if we acknowledge that He is Spirit ; on the problem of sin ; on the unique revelation of God in Christ, who was in some preëminent sense the Son of God ; on immortality, for because man lives in God here and now, he shall live in the kingdom where time and space are not ; on the object of the divine punishment of sin ; on the divine justice ; on miracles, and on the absoluteness of the Christian religion. This slight sketch indicates the theistic belief of the lecturer, and also the thoroughness and breadth with which the inquiry was conducted.
A few questions arise at two or three points, and are suggested here as queries rather than criticisms. Many will dissent from the opinion that the universe is eternal and was never created. Does the idea of creation necessarily conflict with the idea of the living energy of God constantly manifesting itself in the universe ? May not creation, as Augustine put it, have been not in time, but with time (non in tempore, sed cum tempore)? The successions of time are a form of the universe, and cannot be thought apart from it any more than it can be thought apart from them ; and so time need not, perhaps cannot, be thought of as existing indefinitely before the universe came into being. But we distinguish between the universe, which, as the author holds, is conditioned and dependent, and the Absolute Spirit on which it depends. We apprehend the Absolute as unconditioned by time and space, and therefore as having existence independently of the world, which can exist only in time and space. It need not be held that the universe was created out of nothing, but it may be held that it proceeded from the potentiality or power of the Absolute Spirit. Although we cannot conceive the mode of creation, is there any contradiction in the idea that the Absolute Being could and did produce the material world, in which He manifests himself, under conditions of extension in space and succession in time? All the way through the author recognizes two distinct realities, which he characterizes as spiritual and material, absolute and dependent, infinite and conditioned. Does not this radical distinction of the realities of spirit and matter involve a dependent existence of the world as truly as it involves a dependent continuance? The mystery lies at the point of any manifestation of the Absolute in the finite, of any limitation of the Absolute such that it is expressed in extension and succession. Is not this mystery increased rather than reduced by the supposition that the material universe is eternal? The idea of creation does not exclude but necessarily involves the constant energy and presence of God in the world He has made. But the eternal existence of matter, if of necessity, seems to render doubtful the energizing of God in its present movement, and to lead to the belief
VOL. XV. - NO. 85.
that the universe and God are not distinct, but only different modes of conceiving the same reality, or, in a word, to thorough-going pantheism. It might also be observed, if the author goes on with Lotze in his philosophy, that space and time are modes of finite but not of absolute existence and thought, that extension and succession, under which alone we can perceive the universe, may not be the modes under which it exists for the Absolute, and that therefore God determined for the objective reality which stands before us the conditions of its very being as spatial and temporal; that is, created it, because time and space themselves are dependent on Him who manifests himself in that which thus appears to us. But to say that the universe has an eternal existence because, so far back as we can go, we cannot conceive a beginning, is to put conditions of time and space upon the Absolute, and to make them objective realities of which the Absolute cannot be independent. Is it not virtually saying that the Absolute from eternity existed in an externalized form ? The universe may be best understood as having its being and nature in the eternal archetypal thought of God, a thought which is realized in coincidence with the conditions of time and space.
Some also might dissent from the Lotzean conception of causation as the reciprocal action of the parts of a single being, although this is a matter of less importance. The mode in which motion is communicated from one body to another, so that a state of one affects the state of the other, is indeed inscrutable, and we can only say that Force manifests and transmits itself thus and so, without loss or increase. But it is also inscrutable how the parts of a single being produce changes in each other, how will.power becomes muscular power, how sensations become perceptions, how even physical organs have a relation of cause and effect so that lung-power becomes heart-power. Besides, if there is only one unity of which all existences, conscious and unconscious, are members, where do we find a unity in which reciprocal action is intelligible, and from which we argue to the absolute unity? The reciprocities of organisms which are expressions of the vital force furnish helpful suggestions concerning the interrelated cosmos, but of themselves carry us only to the idea of force in general, that mysterious energy of which all phenomena, mechanical and vital, are effects or expressions, which is the stopping-place of science, but the starting-point of religion.
Some of the observations in the closing lecture are mere suggestions offered without argument, and they would perhaps be more readily agreed to if they could have been elaborated and explained. As they stand, it appears as if the author had undervalued the evidence for the historical reality of miracles, had rejected the idea of absolute justice, from having in view the traditional rather than the profounder ethical conception, and had thought of the person of Jesus Christ, who is both God and man, as one who is neither God nor man.
It is easier, however, to criticise than to construct. As Dr. Schurman says, after speaking of the hearty sympathy of the Andover faculty with the general spirit and outcome of his inquiries, “It would be strange indeed if they accepted all my conclusions, or even looked at common beliefs from the same point of view." His discussion of evolution in relation to theism is of great value, and his thought of the living, present, immanent God, in connection with his criticism of the mechanical theory of creation, commends itself to all who would restore the ancient belief concerning Him in whom we live and move and have our being
THE EVIDENCE OF CHRISTIAN EXPERIENCE, Being the Ely Lectures for 1890. By LEWIS FRENCH STEARNS, Professor of Christian Theology in Bangor Theological Seminary. Pp. viii, 473. New York : Charles Scribner's Sons. 1890.
This book is an important contribution to theological science. It is decidedly the most valuable work on Christian Apologetics which has appeared in this country or in England during the last decade. It is the first clear and thorough-going product of that reconstruction of the argument for Christianity which has been going on in recent years. It is also better adapted to its purpose, at least for English readers, than similar discussions by Frank, Dorner, and other German theologians, as it is less abstruse, is developed in better proportion, and is more strongly guarded against objections. It is a pleasure to commend Professor Stearns's book to all students of theology, whether they are young or old.
The object of the book is twofold: to develop the argument for Christianity froin the experience of Christian believers, explaining fully what that experience is and what it certifies, and also to show that such experience is not merely one argument among others, but that it is the oltimate and fundamental ground of certainty concerning the revelation of God's redeeming grace in Christ, and that in relation to it all other evidences are preliminary and supplemental. Both these objects have been successfully accomplished. The book therefore covers the entire field of Christian evidences by this recovery of an argument which has been considered secondary to a place of central and commanding importance,
Since the purpose of Christianity is to produce a certain kind of life, a renewal of man from sin to holiness, a reconciliation and union with God, the test of the reality and power of God's revelation in Christ must, in the last analysis, be that very life which it is given to produce - which may be known in part by observation of it, but directly and certainly only by experience of it. The historical proof that Jesus Christ lived, taught, died, and rose again, that the Bible contains an authentic account of Him, and that the Christian Church sprung up in the world, makes it probable that God seeks and saves men through Christ. The results of Christianity in society and civilization strengthen the probability that Christ was sent from God to establish his kingdom. But the certainty that God finds men in their sins and saves them, and knowledge of the nature of his power as it thus works, can be gained only by experience. Moreover the Christian Church and Christian civilization are only the results of that first and great result, the new life in Jesus Christ. It is true that this experience is peculiar. It corresponds to the realities which stand before faith. It is moral, spiritual, religious, in distinctive ways. But this should be expected. All knowledge of conviction and experience is determined by the characteristics of the truth which is known. It would, indeed, be strange if such a revelation did not produce an experience or a life above the ordinary level. The absence of it would be indefeasible proof that the revelation had no reality, but was the product of imagination.
The author maintains that the essential thing in all religion is the personal relation of God to the religious man and of the religious man to God, that God has always been revealing himself, and that the religious feeling is the response of man to such revelation. The development of the theistic conception in its nature and reasons as given by the religious powers and needs of man in his personality is admirably presented with clearness and force. God's revelation in Christ is the highest form in which God comes into personal relations with man who, as a person, is free and responsible, but also a sinner and in need of redemption. It is in the personal response of man in faith and repentance that Christianity gains its foothold and does its work. When one ventures out in faith on the promise of God for his redemption, certain results follow in his will, intellect, feeling, and conscience, which point to a divine cause. The work is immanent, not external, and is thus known to be the work of the Holy Spirit. By the Spirit the believer is united to Christ, and a Christ-like work begins, and he is thus made certain of the real power and presence of Jesus Christ. He knows himself a child of God, and thus knows God as his Father, having a knowledge of God unlike that which he has gained from other sources. He also has the peace of the forgiveness of sins, and participates in a new fellowship with other believers. He is aware of a radical transformation. His certainty does not pass away, but strengthens with growing experience of the grace of God all through his life of prayer and service. This experience is the verification of Christianity in its distinctive truths, for it is analogous to the scientific method by which probability is converted into certainty through experiment and result. The Christian knows whom he has believed. He knows God as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, not in the sense that he becomes certain of an abstract doctrine, but in the sense that his experience corresponds to those modes of God's disclosures of his love and grace.
To the objection that the evidence is based on a private and particular experience, it is replied that this is true of all experimental evidence in that it conforms to the conditions of the case, which, in respect to Christianity, are personal trust and obedience, but also that there is a universal element in it, since it is rooted in the nature and need of man and in the universal religious experience, that it is accessible to all, and that it has a sufficient provisional evidence in its favor to afford a basis for trial, for in Christian countries the way of salvation is made plain to all. To the objection that the will has to be submitted in order to enter the new life, and that thus any belief, however preposterous, may be accepted, it is replied not only that one enters voluntarily into any sphere of experiment, but also that it is because the truths of Christianity are made probable by testimony, and because of their agreement with what we know of God and of our own needs, that we are inclined to venture out in the following of Christ. Other objections are successfully removed, as that giving so great importance to experience encourages mysticism, revives the Quaker doctrine of the inward light, gives undue prominence to the Christian consciousness, etc. The dependence of believers on the Bible as the source from which knowledge of God's revelation in Christ is obtained is made clear at various points in the discussion. Much valuable thought is introduced into what may be called the setting of the argument as it is given in the first lecture concerning the inadequacy of the proofs employed in the last century and the method which should now be adopted, and in the last lecture concerning the relation of experience to other evidences. Notes of reference and explanation and a full index follow the lectures in a convenient arrangement. This argument, which bears the impress at every point of having been
wrought out by the author's own intellectual toil, is no less plainly the product of his spiritual life. One who can think thus and write thus is dealing not with a theory of experience, but with the experience itself. There is an impression of reality which must make the argument forcible even to a reader who has not himself obtained a like precious faith.
ESSAYS IN PAILOSOPHY. By WILLIAM KNIGHT, Professor of Moral Philos
ophy and Political Economy in the University of St. Andrews. 1 vol. 12 mo, pp. 367. Boston and New York : Houghton, Mifflin & Co. 1890.
We mention this little volume mainly for the excellence of one of the essays which examines the question of evolution and its relation to ethics. It is a collection of essays upon philosophic subjects in general, including the following list of titles: “Idealism and Experience,” “ Classification of the Sciences," " Eclecticism,” “ Personality and the Infinite," “ Immortality,” “ The Doctrine of Metempsychosis," and “ Ethical Philosophy and Evolution.” All of the collection are very clear discussions of their particular problems, and the reader may congratulate himself on the readiness with which he can enter into the various questions which are involved. If all works of philosophy took the reader into confidence in this way, perhaps its influence would be more beneficial, and it would certainly be more powerful. But it will not be our purpose to enter into a presentation of the merits of the volume in this respect, although we are so pleased with its literary qualities, its candor, distinctness, and sympathetic spirit, as to use the opportunity offered by some notes on the ethical essay in it to commend it very highly to all who wish a plain statement of the great problems occupying the mind of present students. Even of the essay on evolution we need hardly say more. Its special merit, however, is found in the clear hints thrown out about the limitations of that doctrine in ethics. There is no attempt to dispute the truth of evolution, a course which is to our mind very wise, but it is clearly and fairly presented, and its general principles admitted as giving a very satisfactory account of the origin of moral faculty and moral ideas, in so far as mere history is concerned. But the author demurs to any implication, so usually involved in the conception of the destructive power of the doctrine, that the decisions of moral faculty are impaired by any theory of their development or historical origin. • Readers will find many suggestions and much help from the essay, and quite as much benefit from the entire collection. We commend it, therefore, for the interest it awakens in philosophic and ethical problems.
J. H. Hyslop.
HAVERFORD COLLEGE STUDIES. Numbers 3, 4, 5. Published by the Faculty
of Haverford College. Price, $1.00 each.
In the “ Andover Review " for February, 1890, mention was made of the series of “Studies" above-named, and some account was given of the contents of its first two numbers. Since then three additional numbers have appeared, the contents of two of which and a part also of the third are from the indefatigable pen of Dr. J. Rendel Harris. · Seventy-tbree of the eighty pages in No. 3 are occupied with an ac