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This visionary statement-of kindred quality with our editor's notions as developed in the fifteenth Conversation, from page 186 to page 248, where we are taught that the reign of Saul was the type of the law of Moses; and the reign of David the type of the gospel dispensation; and the reign of Solomon the type of the millennium ;how Hiram, in assisting Solomon to build the temple, typifies the professing church employed by the Lord as instruments of establishing his kingdom;-how the Philistines are types of the infidel and pagan enemies of the Church;-how David's adultery with the wife of a Gentile Hittite shadowed forth the adulterous union of the Christian Church with the harlot of Babylon ;-how Mephibosheth appears to represent the spiritual Jew ;-how the "old age of David, endeavouring to get warmth and life from the heathen Abishag, may point to the abortive attempts of the professing Church, in the present day, upon the heathen world, by its missionary operations ;"-this visionary statement, elaborate and minute as it is, stands obnoxious to the slight charge of being unauthorized by Scripture; an objection, be it observed, fatal to its worth. The reveries of the noted Professor of Divinity in the University of Leyden, which "represented the whole history of the Old Testament as a mirror, that held forth an accurate view of the transactions and events which were to happen in the Church under the dispensation of the New Testament;" and which maintained that the miracles, actions, and sufferings of Christ and his Apostles, during the course of their ministry, were types and images of future events;" were not a whit more extravagant than the chimeras of our congregation of seers, who, in every resemblance discover a type, and in every similitude a symbol, without considering that as a type must have been designed from the beginning to prefigure its antitype, (the connexion between them being preordained and inherent,) the reality of such previous design must depend upon divine authority. There is, in good truth, just as much ground for asserting with Cocceius, that "the ten commandments were promulgated by Moses, not as a rule of obedience, but as a representation of the covenant of grace," as there is for the ludicrous and whimsical fancies before us.
Our author talks of "sin being infused into Adam," p. 54, and he tells us, that "the fall of man was ordained from all eternity," p. 36. But sin is a privative, and cannot, therefore, be an object of any act; and the fall of man, i. e. his "first disobedience," cannot be said to have been "ordained" by God; for in that case, being conformable to his will, it would cease to be evil; but it was permitted by God, and originated, perhaps, (for we speak with humility and caution on
* John Koch, or Cocceius. Mosheim's Eccl. Hist. cent. 17. sect. 2. part ii. § 31.
this deep mystery), in a principle of defectibility, in such a free agent as man. We advert, however, to the subject, with no hope of solving its difficulties, but for the purpose of recommending our dramatis persona, when again assembled in council, to study this admirable piece of advice : "Seek not the things that are too hard for thee, neither search the things that are above thy strength. But what is commanded thee, think thereupon with reverence; for it is not needful for thee to see with thine eyes the things that are in secret. Be not curious in unnecessary matters. For many are deceived by their own vain opinion." Eccles. xviii. 6.
Indeed, this wise caution might have prevented the publication of these random" Dialogues on Prophecy," and stifled the metaphysical niceties which are broached relating to the Holy Ghost, who is said “to submit to the Father, by agreeing to go into the body, to be at the bidding of the Son in the manhood, (p. 278); of which "unnecessary matters" it is a sign of any thing but humility and wisdom, thus dogmatically to write. O! "what perverseness it is to endeavour to break into the sacred repositories of heaven, and pretend to accommodate those secrets of the divine kingdom to the measures and methods of our weak capacities!" *
With the Calvinistic creed of our editor, we are, on the present occasion, unwilling to meddle; let him swallow those crudities if he can. Many good men have adopted the principles of that reformer, and many bright ornaments of the Church of England have held his uncomfortable opinions. But we cannot permit the cloak of Calvinism to be cast over puerilities like these which we have discussed; and much less can we forbear from chastising an arrogant spirit of invective against "the leading authorities of the Church," who are branded as covetous hypocrites, (pp. 327, 328); or from indignantly noticing the degrading comparisons instituted between the Clergy of the Establishment, and Roman Catholic Priests, and "eloquent" Dissenting Ministers, however imposing may be the assumption of superior sanctity and wisdom, or however awful the denunciations which are uttered against such as shall impiously dare to question the more than papal infallibility of these talkers on Prophecy !
* Archbishop Leighton.
Divines of the Church of England, with Lives of the Authors, Summary of each Discourse, Notes, &c. By the Rev. T. S. HUGHES, B. D. of Emmanuel College, Cambridge, &c. &c. Bishop Sherlock, No. 1. London: Valpy. 1830. Pp. lxxi. 418. 7s. 6d.
We know not how far the editor and the printer are respectively concerned in the publication before us; but we know quite enough of the former to be fully persuaded that his part in the "Divines of the Church of England" will be ably and honourably fulfilled. If, indeed, we may judge from the specimen before us, nothing will be wanting to render the projected
collection one of the most valuable additions to the library of the theologian which could well have been devised. The memoir of Sherlock is a well-written and highly interesting piece of biography; and a series of the lives of the great Fathers of our Church, upon the same plan, would, in themselves, be sufficient to ensure success to the undertaking. Of the Summaries, it will be sufficient to state that they furnish a very complete digest of the discourses to which they are prefixed; and are well calculated to answer the end for which they are designed, that of assisting the younger clergy in composition. Notes to the present volume there are none, because none were required; but the editor's well-known theological acquirements leave no doubt respecting the utility of those which may be hereafter neces
Turn we now to the publisher.The original prospectus states that forty volumes would be about the limit of the projected series; and the number has since been enlarged to about fifty. Now, giving the utmost possible latitude to this indefinite mode of calculation, this statement is not quite VOL. XII. NO. VII.
so fair or so tradesman-like as we could wish. It will require three times the number of volumes, at least, to complete the proposed plan. Sherlock alone will occupy at least four, if not five volumes; and after him are to follow the complete works of Barrow; and the most popular works of Hall, Atterbury, Jewel, Laud, Jortin, South, Hurd, Bull, Beveridge, Balguy, S. Clarke, Ogden, Paley, Waterland, J. Taylor, &c.. Why the most popular given, in a series of which completeness works only of these last are to be ought to be a leading feature, we are however, an average of two volumes at a loss to conjecture. Allowing, only to the fifteen expressly named, and ten to complete Sherlock and Barrow, we have only ten remaining for the &c., amongst which any of our theological friends will readily run off twenty or thirty of our ablest divines on the tip of his tongue. The plain fact is, Mr. Valpy means to continue the series as long as it will pay; and this under the superintendence of Mr. Hughes, will be as long as he continues it. He ought to have been candid enough to say so.
We refrain from saying more upon this subject, than that we really wish the work well.
The Family Cabinet Atlas; constructed upon an original plan, and engraved on steel. By Mr. THOMAS STARLIng. Part I. Eight Plates. 2s. 6d. plain, 3s. 6d. coloured. London: Bull. 1830.
WE occasionally swerve a little from our beaten track for the purpose of recommending a work of general utility, though without the range of theological literature. Such an opportunity now presents itself in the elegant little book before us; which, for neatness of
execution, combined with perspicuity of design, exceeds every idea which can be formed respecting it. From its minute size, it might have been thought that no practical end could be answered by its publication; but we can assure our readers that its plan is so constructed as to be of infinitely greater service to the young geographer, than the generality of Atlasses which are commonly employed. On the maps themselves the principal cities and towns only are inserted; but a table of all others of any note, with their latitude and longitude annexed. Plates of the relative height of mountains and length of rivers are also furnished, which convey the intended idea with wonderful exactness. The engravings are made on this reduced scale with a view to their corresponding in size with those popular publications of the day-Lardner's Cabinet Cyclopædia," Murray's "Family Library," &c. By the way, we may remark of the former of these works, that it is in every way deserving of the patronage which it has received, and bids fair to increase in public estimation. We shall take an early opportunity of giving it a more particular notice; at least upon the appearance of its first theological treatise.
The Scripture Doctrine of the Divine Unity, and of the Person of Christ, asserted and defended against the Objections of Unitarians: with an Appendix on Phil. ii. 6-11. By JOSEPH LAW, B. A. Curate of Whittingham. London: Seeley. Price 7s. Pp. xi. 388.
THIS is an excellent compendium of the chief points of the Socinian controversy, and we recommend it heartily to the perusal of the lovers of truth. It purports to be an answer to some Lectures on the principles of Unitarianism, by J. S. Hyndman, the Socinian preacher at Alnwick; and as those discourses are said to "contain the head, and heart, and strength, of the Unitarian cause, and may, therefore, be regarded as a kind of Unitarian manual;" so the able work
before us may be looked upon as a sort of "popular manual in defence of the orthodox faith."
As usefulness rather than novelty was our author's object, he has freely availed himself of the labours of others. Dr. Wardlaw's volumes "on the Socinian Controversy," and Dr. P. Smith's "6 Scripture Testimony to the Messiah," and Scott's "Commentary on the Bible," have been the copious treasures whence Mr. Law has taken whatever suited his laudable purpose, sacrificing the vanity of authorship to the desire of being instructive. We do not mean that the admirable treatise on our table is a servile copy from the works of others; far from it: Mr. Law is any thing rather than a mere compiler of the sentiments of others, and his small volume is replete with matter of learned argument in defence of the faith, which we defy the subtilest maintainer of Socinianism to controvert. The Scriptures are the armoury whence he has taken his weapons; and the concurrent sense of the Catholic Church is the tribunal to which he has wisely made his appeal, "both for assistance in the interpretation of the sacred text, and for guidance in those matters of religion which the text has left at large." (Preface, p. v.) Arians and Apollinarians, Nestorians and Eutichians, meet with their respective confutations; and the attempts of Priestley and Belsham to seduce men from the form of sound words will assuredly prove abortive, wherever they are met with the sterling wisdom of such writers as the able Curate of Whittingham, whose labours we thus recommend to the candid perusal of the public. We cordially thank Mr. Law for his seasonable refutation of a system, which, "assuming the name of Christianity, destroys the foundations of Christian faith, and peace, and hope, and joy, by denying the Lord who bought us, crucifying the gospel, and turning the record of God into a lie."-(Preface, p.ix.)
As a specimen of the style of this little compendium (containing more matter, by-the-by, than many a costly quarto), we quote the following passage from page 4:
Unitarianism! This is the inscription which modern Socinians put upon their banner, as the distinguishing characteristic of their religion. They are Unitarians. What does the term imply? That they believe in one God alone. Does this belief then form a peculiar characteristic, distinguishing them from all others? No. The Turks believe in one God alone. The infidel Deists believe in one God alone. These then are Unitarians. Is it replied, "The Socinians are Christians, which is not the case with Mahometans and Deists; and they assume the title of Unitarians, in order to distinguish themselves from other Christians?" Do not other Christians then believe in one God alone? Yes, they believe and assert the Unity of God, or that there is but one God, as firmly and strenuously as any "Unitarian" whatever. Thus they are Unitarians equally with those who inscribe the name on their banner. Is it further replied, "Other Christians are Trinitarians, who believe a Trinity of persons in one Godhead, and we call ourselves Unitarians, to distinguish us from those who are Trinitarians?" Then, I ask, why not assume a name answerable to the distinction, and which would really and HONESTLY distinguish them? Why not call themselves Anti-trinitarian or Solitarian, or plainly Socinian? Why assume a name as peculiarly distinguishing themselves, when it is honestly common to all called Christians? As assumed by them, it implies that others called Christians are not Unitarian. We feel the implication, and cannot allow the claim. It is toward us a fraudulent matter, and we can regard it in no other light than as a fraud, and entitled to some other appellation than "an honest attempt." And if the banner is inscribed with fraud, what may we expect will be the character of the doings of those who fight under it?-P. 4.
pious endeavour it is to crush this pestilent perversion of the truth as it is in Jesus Christ.
Sermons on various subjects. By the Rev. JOHN STEDMAN, D. D. Assistant Minister of Margaret's Chapel, Bath. Bath: Upham. London: Hatchard. 1830. 8vo. Pp. vi. 346.
THE circumstances under which this volume appears to have been published, would at once disarm the severity of criticism, even were it otherwise requisite to be severe. We are happy, however, in being able to recommend the Discourses of Dr. Stedman to our readers. They are quite equal to the ordinary run of published sermons; and we hope that the profits arising from a long and respectable list of subscribers, will be increased by a yet more extensive circulation among the religious public.
Sermons preached at the Temple Church. By the Rev. ANDREW IRVINE, B.D. Chaplain of the Tower, and late Assistant Preacher at the Temple, 1830. London: Murray. 8vo. Pp. 280. Price 8s. 6d.
THE past and present annals of the 'Temple" Church are so connected in our minds with the names of our ablest preachers and the soundest divines, that we look almost instinctively for more than ordinary pretensions from a volume of Sermons which were delivered within the walls of that venerable sanctuary. Nor in the present instance have we been essentially disappointed. We do not mean to
rank the discourses of Mr. Irvine with those of a Sherlock and a Rennell, or with those of the highly gifted preacher of the present day; but they are good specimens of sound reasoning, pure theology, and practical application. The following remarks, however, from the concluding sermon, on "Strict Adherence to Scripture," require a few words of observation:
It is a fact not to be denied, that there are many assuming to themselves high authority as expounders of Scripture, who,