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the offence with which it is charged; plainly intimating that, in its unsophisticated judgment, voluntariness is essential to criminality. From all ages, ranks, countries, and religions we have but one voice, and that one voice is the voice of conscience, attesting that man is responsible because he is free.
* * * * * * * In speaking of responsibility I am not affirming that it is equally felt by all mankind. It is certain that none but God can know its extent. To feel as we ought on this subject we must have a perfect knowledge of our own power to do good, and of all the relations we bear to ourselves, to our species, and to our God and Saviour. But in neither of these points has the mind of the savage any adequate knowledge. Still there are a few duties which he recognises as within the range of his choice, and which he never neglects without being conscious of guilt. He has his own person, which he feels he ought to defend; he has friends to whom he is under some obligation; he, perhaps, has a chieftain to whom native loyalty teaches him that he owes allegiance; he has enemies whose injuries he thinks himself bound to suppress; and if his country has any gods, he is unhappy unless he pays them some deference. The range of his morality and religion may be very limited; but still it is sufficient to show that he has a conscience, and that he considers himself a responsible being. Wherever we find a soul, there we may also find a conscience. We might as well expect to discover a race of human beings without skulls, spinal marrow, or rib bones, as to meet with immortal spirits without consciences, or the consciousness of freedom and responsibility. The bitter complaints which savage nations have uttered against the cruelties of their more savage and soi-disant Christian oppressors, are sufficient evidence that they have a keen sense of injustice, and, therefore, are conscious of right and wrong. And I need not add that it is the existence of this conscience that gives hope to the missionary. Vain would it be to attempt the conversion of the heathen were they destitute of this moral sense. You might as well expect to make angels out of lions and serpents, as to indulge the fond expectation of producing Christians out of beings which have no vestige of conscience. As the religion of heaven is unique, so the spirits that receive it must be unique too. They must be rational and conscious, and, therefore, have a conscience. It is true that among them this moral faculty may be as limited in its influence as the other powers of their minds, and, therefore, may be almost hidden, or, like the gold in their mines, or pearls in their rivers, be unappreciated; still if we will search we shall soon find that the gem is there, and if brought forth and polished will bear comparison with any precious stone in our more civilized cabinets. * * * *
I once heard the founder of Socialism vaunt that he could produce any kind of conscience that he pleased; a Hindoo conscience, a Mohammedan conscience, a Jewish conscience, or a Christian conscience. The boast was followed by immense applause from his deluded followers. But then there was nothing in it so very marvellous after all. He might as well have declared that by shutting a human being up in a dark dungeon, and excluding him from books, pictures, and all human conversation, he could effectually prevent his having any ideas of the heavens or the earth ; of the land or the sea; or of trees, beasts, birds, and fishes! What a splendid revelation ! And who ever doubted that Robert Owen, provided he could only get money enough to establish his community and exclude it from intercourse with the rest of mankind, has very ample power to shut them up in moral darkness ? The question is not about his powers to delude and blind, but whether he has any ability to enlighten; and what kind of conscience that would be which has a person of his principles for its creator? But still we may say this much for the soul of man, plastic and depraved as it may be, that should any person place before an unsophisticated mind, a clear and distinct view of paganism in all its laws and bearings upon human happiness or misery; of Mohammedanism with a full and fair account of its origin and of what it has done for mankind; and of Christianity and its laws of love, its evidence of having God for its author, and its adaptation to improve the intellect and morals of all who submit to its authority, and then leave the individual to his unbiassed choice, its suffrage would invariably be given in favour of the religion of Jesus Christ. Of course it is possible to exclude objects from the senses, and also to keep back moral laws from the mind, but this is not the point; the question is, can you impart knowledge to the mind and yet keep it in ignorance; or can you imbue the conscience with virtuous laws, and yet prevent its having any compunctions for violating them ? By shutting out all other morality but that of paganism, the conscience would of necessity embrace savage laws for want of better; but throw wide the door of moral instruction and let there be Christian as well as heathenish laws fully and fairly taught, and we defy any one, under such circumstances, to produce a savage conscience. We will not deny that he who has had a Christian education may live a very bad life, but we may assert, and all experience will witness its truth, that though the deeds of such a one may not be virtuous, still his conscience will not be a pagan conscience. There are in it standards of morality that never entered the thought of a heathen, and these will produce such remorse for sin as never could torture the soul of him who was only acquainted with barbarian morality. Christian laws, from their native purity and adaptation to man, contain in themselves intuitive evidence of their divine origin, and divine right to claim universal obedience.
We now hasten to bring our notice of this important volume to a close, observing that the purchaser will here find sterling value for the price at which it is sold: not a small quantity of letter press spread out over the well margined page, so as to make two or three large volumes of what might be fairly comprised in one of less dimensions ; but a 12mo. with good type, containing as much as is oftentimes made to fill at least two high priced octavos. It is also a work replete with important information; and although the author expresses himself in plain language, and in some few instances, appears not to have been very careful to avoid what by some persons may be deemed inelegancies of expression ; yet he has sent forth a work of uncommon utility, one which proves that the author is a philosopher, a scholar, and a divine : the subjects discussed are of the utmost importance, and they are investigated with great ability. We doubt not, but, that this volume will materially advance the best interests of mankind : it may be read with much profit by both the sexes, and we most heartily recommend it to the attention of our readers.
The IDENTITY OF TRAVELLING AND LOCAL PREACHERS, discussed in a Correspondence between ALFRED BARRETT, Travelling Preacher; and JACOB GRIMSHAW, Local Preacher. 8vo. 40 pp. W. Dawson, London.
This pamphlet was occasioned by some statements, from the pen of the Rev. A. Barrett, Conference Itinerant Preacher, and author of the Prize Essay on the Pastoral office; the statements referred to were printed in the Conference Methodist Magazine for March last. The following are the words more particularly referred to, “ The Travelling Preachers and Local Preachers, have been spoken of by many as persons substantively engaged in the same work; and that the difference between them (the one being fully devoted to it, and the other not; the one administering the sacraments, and the other not; the one having a charge of over-inspection, and the other not) was determined by the rules of the society, and not from that broad and well-defined distinction of calling, which is recognised in the Scriptures,”
Mr. Grimshaw disapproving of this statement, addressed a letter to Mr. Barrett, in which he endeavours to show, that the rules of the Conference Methodist Society make no distinction between the call to preach the Gospel, of travelling and local preachers ; and the evidence he has adduced from the Minutes of Conference establishes his point.
Mr. Barrett, replies to Mr. Grimshaw's letter, and professes to point out mistakes made by his correspondent. He admits the legitimacy of the labours of local preachers; he, however, denies that they are ministers or pastors; maintaining, or rather asserting only, that as private Christians are required" to reprove sin, and rebuke and reprove sinners,” local preachers may « be called "--" occasionally or frequently to preach ;" but are not " called to feed the church of God, to take the care of that church, to rule well, to exercise those acts of nurture and discipline, and defence of doctrine !” « which are enjoined in the epistles of Paul to Timothy and Titus." Mr. Barrett also informs Mr. Grimshaw, that the leading mistake of his letter “ is, the regarding ordination or a solemn separation of an individual to the entire and continual work of the ministry as nothing."
In several letters, Mr. Grimshaw combats the opinions thus advanced by Mr. Barrett, and manifests considerable skill in his management of the discussion. He states, that it is impossible for Mr. Barrett to prove from Scripture, that it would be improper for any who are called to preach the gospel to administer the sacraments : that as to the exclusive claim, advanced by Mr. Barrett on behalf of the itinerant preachers to the pastorate ; that the office of pastors does not belong to them of divine right; that mutual consent is necessary to establish the relation subsisting between a pastor and his flock; and that the leaders of classes virtually discharge the duties of the pastoral office. The remarks made by Mr. Grimshaw on the subject of ordination, are deserving of particular attention. He denies, that there is any efficiency in ordination, yet admits that a formal recognition may properly be given to those whom God qualifies for the ministry, and that any Christian society may thereby give authority to such persons to exercise their ministry among them, and may adopt a solemn method of admitting ministers to their particular spheres of labour. He, however, very strongly and justly condemns the opinion, that ordination is a collation or bestowment of the Holy Spirit; and in this sense designates it “ a complication of evils, ” and he proves the truth of this statement. In one of his letters Mr. Grinishaw, however, states his opinions on the subject of the ministry, in such a manner as seems to tend to the conclusion, that there is no particular call given to ministers from the head of the church. After stating what he describes as “ The ministerial scheme developed in the word of God,” he draws this conclusion, “ Hence it appears that a man living up to the ordinary rules of our (the Methodist) society, has in himself, every requisite for a Christian bishop, and is fully eligible for that work, unless there be some impediment arising out of the management of his family, or he be a novice, or he have given some great occasion of scandal to the world, which, he has not yet lived down. It follows, that every society of real Christians is a collection of divinely prepared agents, ready for ministerial action as occasion calls.”
If this conclusion be correct, then it would seem to us that tbere must be an “ Identity,” as to the divine call to the ministry, not only as to itinerant and local preachers, but also, as extending to and including every "real Christian.”
With this opinion we do not concur; every real Christian is not called by God to the work of the ministry. A man may live up to the rules of the Methodist Society, he may properly manage his family, he may be no novice, he may be of good repute, he may be a real Christian, and yet not be qualified for what is ordinarily meant by " the work of the ministry;" and there are a great number of unblamable Christians in the church of Christ, who are not qualified for this work. We admit, that Christ requires all Christians to communicate the knowledge of his truth, and to seek the conversion and salvation of immortal souls : the question however is,—does he give any special call to those whom he designs to occupy the office of the ministry as public preachers of his word ? or is the call alike to all Christians ? or is there no divine call to this work ? If the call is alike to all Christians, or if the Head of the church does not give to any persons a particular, or separate call to become public ministers of his Gospel, then so far as the Head of the church is concerned, either ALL real Christians are ministers, or there are no ministers. We do not see how either of these conclusions, can be made to agree, with the following quotations from the Holy Scriptures. 6 Take heed therefore unto yourselves and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the Church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.” Acts xx, 28. “ And God hath set some in the church ; first apostles ; secondarily prophets; thirdly teachers ; after that miracles; then gifts of healing, helps, governments, diversities of tongues. Are all apostles ? are all prophets ? are all teachers ? are all workers of miracles ? have all the gifts of healing ? do all speak with tongues ? do all interpret?” I Cor. xii. 28, 29. “And he (Christ) gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers. For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:" Eph. iv. 11, 12.
The scriptures we have just quoted, compel us to conclude, that there is a divine call, given by the Head of the church to ministers, differing from that general call which is given to all real Christians to bear witness for God. We shall now endeavour, as briefly as possible, to state our opinions on the question before us. We conceive that God calls all Christians to use, as they may have opportunity, the gifts they possess in making known to others his truth and goodness : that God endows some Christians with such a measure of knowledge and of the gift of utterance, as gives them special qualifications to exhort, to teach, to interpret, to arouse, to comfort, and build up; and these gifts are bestowed upon them to be used in the work of the ministry, for the salvation of the world and for the benefit of the church of Christ. Those on whom God bestows those gifts are called to leave themselves at the disposal of His providence for the service of the church. Some of those God calls to labour in more limited spheres of usefulness than others; for instance, some are called to labour as class leaders, that is privately to instruct, exhort, and comfort those who may meet with them to enjoy christian communion. Others are called of God to the more public ministration of his word, and such are endowed with gifts qualifying them for this work; and yet they are not called to give up their ordinary avocations; this they are not required to do either by God or his church : hence their call is to labour in the work of the ministry in a sphere more extended than that allotted to those before referred to, but not so extensive as that to which those are called, who by the Spirit and providence of God are required to abandon their ordinary avocations, and give themselves entirely to the ministry of the word, and the service of the church. In all these cases there is given a call from God to serve his church; and leaders, local and itinerant preachers are all thus called of God to labour for Him ; but we do not see how it is to be maintained that the divine call given to local and itinerant preachers is “ IDENTICAL.” “Identity" signifies the same ; without any difference ; consequently if there is an “ Identity of Travelling and Local Preachers,” then these terms are no longer dis. tinctive, but convertible, that is, exchangable or synonymous. Then again, if it be said, it is not intended to assert an official identity, but that the CALI given by God to travelling and local preachers is « identical ;" then it is, in effect, asserted, that all those who are called by God to be local preachers are equally called by God to become itinerant preachers; that is, if it is admitted, that any are called of God to become itinerant preachers, because if the calls from God, given to itinerant and local preachers are “identical :" then the calls so given must be in all respects the same, for that which is strictly identical, is the same, without variation or difference. If the calls given by the Head of the church are identical, then it must necessarily follow, that all who are divinely called to become local preachers, are called to place themselves at the disposal of the church to labour in the itinerancy; and that all who are called to the office of local preachers, are possessed of the qualifi. cations required to be possessed by an itinerant minister; for if the call be identical, and if God never calls a man to a work for which he does not qualify him, it would follow that any man called to be a local preacher, is qualified to be an itinerant preacher. We conclude therefore, that although God calls every Christian to that particular service which is suited to the qualifications he possesses, yet, there are some whom God specially endows with gifts