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is a formidable antagonist, and he has done excellent service in this Ritualistic controversy. He has assailed the system root and branch, dealt with its fundamental fallacies, and pointed out their dangerous results, and altogether constructed an argument which it will not be very easy to refute. The exposure of the unscriptural character of the Tractarian teachings is very complete and satisfactory. Very carefully has every plea been examined and most thoroughly refuted; but while unsparing in his treatment of error, Mr. Mellor has nowhere shown a captious or uncharitable spirit. He is plain and outspoken, but always candid and courteous. Clark's Foreign Theological Library. Christian Dogmatics, by Dr. H.
M. MARTENSEN. Commentary on the Book of Job, by Delitzsch.
Vol. ii. THESE two volumes are the latest issue of Mr. Clark's valuable series. While estimating both of them highly, we would specially call attention to Dr. Martense's very complete and comprehensive textbook of Christian Dogmatics. The author is a Lutheran, and, of course, therefore, in many of his views we are unable to acquiesce; but the learned and exhaustive manner in which he has treated the various points of theology is entitled to the highest praise. The book is eminently adapted to the requirements of theological students; and in its selection as one of his series Mr. Clark has shown that discrimination which has secured him such large success, and made his Library one of the most prized treasures of all who possess it. The Sin of Bribery. A sermon preached in High Street Chapel,
Lancaster, on Sunday, December 16th, 1866, by Elvery Dothie,
B.A. London: E. Stock ; Lancaster : J. Nevatt. In our judgment, there is nothing so dishonourable to the character of the English people at large, both high and low, as the extent to which bribery is practised on the one hand, and the estimate which is formed of it on the other. At any election, whether to the humblest office or the most honourable, it would be practised without restraint, and, with few exceptions, nobody thinks any harm of it. For the time, every principle of morality and every sentiment of honour would be held in abeyance, and the most flagrant wickedness is perpetrated without compunction. The worst part of this bad business is that the practice of bribery has found its way into our churches, and permits advocates among them : there, at any rate, the cleansing of the Augean stable ought to commence.
Our readers are probably aware that, at the last parliamentary election, the town of Lancaster acquired for itself a bad pre-eminence in political bribery; and it is pretty generally known, we believe, that several members of the Independent Church there were deeply implicated. It is satisfactory to be informed that scriptural discipline has been exercised, in most cases with salutary effect; and we think that Mr. Dothie has done well, both in preaching his sermon and in publishing it. It is a sensible, scriptural, and earnest appeal to the understanding and the conscience, and we commend it heartily to general circulation.
THOUGHTS ON PUBLIC WORSHIP.
WORSHIP springs from a need of our nature to express the reverence we feel toward God. This, in union with the social instinct, which compels men to a fellowship with others even in his most spiritual acts, gives rise to public worship. The springs of worship are in ourselves, but the end of worship is God.“Whoso offereth praise glorifieth me.” God, we believe, delights in the worship
of His creatures when it springs from the heart, and is a true expression of the gratitude and praise of beings He has made; not that He desires praise for selfglorification, but because His infinite perfections and glorious works deserve praise, because to give them praise is the duty and impulse of every good heart, and because the goodness of God is identical with goodness itself.
Worship is not precisely religion itself, but it is the expression of the religious sentiment in an act that comprehends the offering up of the whole man to God. Vinet says that worship is “the assemblage of all the elements of our being in an act of pure religion.” All parts of our complex nature enter into this act of worship, and are all of them fitly represented in the great common act of public worship. The physical nature is represented by the actual bodily presence in the house of God
- by the attitude of devotion—by the formal ordinance which appeals to the eye and sense. This is that symbolic element in worship to which belongs the form of expression, and the whole external method of devotion. There is also the emotional
part of our nature which enters into public worship—the rendering up of the sensibilities and affections to God. This expresses itself in the penitential confession, the sacred lyric, and the adoring prayer. It is the pure liturgical element in worship, that which is essential to its life and fervour, the essential, the very heart of worship. Genuine feeling is the soul of worship—and, above all, the feeling of dependent trust and affectionate devotion to God--the true Sursum Corda of the primitive Church. We can, indeed, think of many other things which come into, and must come into Christian worship; but if feeling, if what we call the heart, is wanting, all is wanting. The intellect and conscience enter largely into rational Christian worship, but worship in its innermost sense is not intellectual instruction, nor is it the definite action, at the time being, of the moral sense, i.e., doing acts of duty or benevolence—but it is the lifting up of the heart to God in humble, penitent, joyful adoration. It is the true and fervent expression of the love and willing service of God—a readiness and yearning to receive spiritual gifts from Him. The heart of the worshipper must be in a fit state to receive blessings from God. It should be in a receptive as well as active state. It must, indeed, be in part in a passive condition, one of love and faith and trust, one able to receive, as well as to give. It must be able to lose sight of self, and to fix the eye of fervent affectionate confidence on God, and thus be ready to obtain grace and peace and inward refreshing from on high. And again, the intellectual or rational nature, including both the conscience and will, has also its appropriate place in the solemn act of the public worship of God. This is the didactic element in worship which instructs the soul in religious truth, and builds it up in the very spirit and life of Christ. Vinet, quoting from Harms, says, “that preaching is only an accidental adjunct of worship, not an integral part of it.” We cannot agree to this, and we would prefer to take the larger and higher view of worship which has already been given, and which is, in fact, carrying out Vinet's own thought, that it is “the assemblage of all the elements of our being (the rational as well as the emotional) in an act of pure religion.” Protestants rightly view “preaching of the Word” as a main part of Christian worship; but we should not at the same time lose sight of the fact that it is worship—that God, and not the human preacher, is the great end of preaching —that preaching itself is a part of the praise and service of God. Preaching as an element of public worship is a somewhat different thing from the instructive lecture, or the popular address, however useful and needful, upon any purely ethical subject. It has some peculiar features which constitute its proper relations to the worship of God's house, which make it also praise, and which do not permit it to stand isolated as a mere effort of the human mind, or as exclusively addressed to the intellect, or as a simple lesson in the instruction of Divine truth. True worship is the edifying or building up of the people in all Christian faith and godliness; but it does this by leading them to God in prayer, song, reading the Scriptures, and preaching; by developing the Divine life, the real Christian feeling, the true spirit of Christian love, that exists in the congregation. It is bringing out this consciousness of the life of God and Christ that is in the souls of the people -giving expression to this and thus warming to new growth and activity every power and quality of the Christian life. True worship makes men better Christians, purer, more self-sacrificing and courageous workers in all good things, because the heart has been kindled by contact with the heart of Christ. In the same way preaching to save the souls of the impenitent finds its highest impulse
in the praise and glory of God, that those darkened and silent spirits may, by the renewing power of Christ given to them, break their chains of sin, and join in the universal song of praise that continually goes up from all holy hearts to the blessed Lord and Redeemer of our nature. This deep interrelation of preaching to the whole idea of Divine worship is, we think, a very important one, and settles many mooted questions in regard to the subject-matter, style, length, manner, and entire character of the sermon which is spoken on the Lord's day in the public service of the sanctuary. Then, lastly, to carry out fully this theory of worship, the more purely spiritual element should, above all, not be wanting. This draws out the highest nature of man in the adoration of God, raises man to a participation in spiritual things, and promotes a real and present union with the spirit of Christ. This is that deep soulelement which constitutes the true spiritual worship of God, as contradistinguished from all merely human, formal, ritual, and outward modes of worship; which, in fine, fulfils the words of the Saviour when he said :-“But the hour cometh and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth.” This is the worship which Christ Himself and His disciples rendered to the Father of all mercies, and which now, in the name and through the faith of the Son of God, is rendered by true Christian believers, the world over, to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. The whole conception of public worship which has been thus set forth, summoning the varied nature of man to a high and joyful act of praise, consecrating his entire being, body and soul, as a reasonable offering to God, meets, we believe, the highest enlightened Christian consciousness, as we find it developed in the New Testament, and in the history and worship of the universal Christian church.
And none of the elements which have been mentioned should be wanting in the great and solemn act of public worship; all should have their proper place; the loss of even one of them would seriously impair the unity, beauty, and truth of the worship. Without the outward form and bodily presence, we run into the purely subjective, inexpressive, and spiritualistic idea of worship, which tends to degenerate into no worship at all, and evaporates in silence and nonentity. In the absence of the emotional, or more purely devotional element, the worship becomes lifelessly formal or fatally rationalistic; so that if a man goes to church with the sole idea of gaining instruction, of having dark points cleared up, and obtains no new light on the dark things of truth, he might very well say, “It would be about as well for me to stay at home-I have books written by master minds—I get no food here.” And if the intellectual or didactic element were taken away, the worship would sink into a bald ritualism without a ray of the Divine intelligence shining through it, and about equal, for all power to help the soul to rise to God, to the "sounding brass ” and senseless. mummeries of a Buddhist temple.
Having thus set forth briefly this general theory of publie worship, let us now look for a moment at its actual form and expression. The mere outward form of worship, where it does not embrace actual error, is, we hold, left substantially to the choice and regulation of the church itself; therefore we think it profitable to inquire after all the legitimate sources of power, interest, fervour, and truth in worship.
There can be no doubt that the more spiritual the church, the less actual need it has of outward forms of worship; yet even this principle cannot be carried too far, for in Heaven, where it is supposed that forms will not be needed, there is represented to be something like order, form, harmony, and communion in worship. It is the four-and-twenty elders who give praise to the Lord God Almighty. It is the hundred and forty-four thousand who sing the new song, and the harpers join with them. There is a definite theme of praise, and a defined number who sing and praise together. If this be some true image given to us of the praise of Heaven, it would seem as if some form were needful for those who still possess human bodies and sympathies, and who are still creatures of time and place. The