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was the date of the separation, (says Strype,)“ a most unhappy event, whereby people of the same country, of the same religion, and of the same judgment in doctrine, parted communions; one part being obliged to go aside into secret houses and chambers, to serve God by themselves, which begat strangeness between neigbors, christians, and protestants.”
We did not, on looking at the exclusive ground which bishop Hopkins has taken through his whole work, anticipate near the close, such sentiments as the following, on p. 312, “I frankly avow my abhorrence of all party names and distinctions. High church, and low church designations should be held in reprobation by all true churchmen.” There is nevertheless a vital and evangelical distinction between the two classes of Episcopalians, denoted by the terms high and low churchmen; and it has existed from the time of Dr. Bancroft's sermon, (Jan. 1588,) on the jure divino right of bishops. Dissenters have no disagreement with the first mentioned class : their difficulty is wholly with the latter. We must pass over "the official character of a bishop” with his three-fold duties of " father, governor, and judge,” and the “accordance of Episcopal government with republican principle.” We are not convinced, however, that the sole power of ordination, and excommunication, and the highest powers of government, are of right vested in one ruler. As to titles, we perceive that our author explains the separate terms of Reverend, and Father, and justifies their application, but omits to prefix Rt. Why so? If we may hazard a conjecture, the whole array of titles, Rt. Reverend Father in God, etc. etc. would differ too much from " Paul the apostle;” and “our beloved brother Paul," and shew a startling departure from the republican simplicity of the gospel. In the closing Lecture from Gal. iv. 16, “ Am I therefore become your enemy because I tell you the truth,” author (who by the way tells a different kind of truth from Paul) deplores the evils of disunion, and proposes a remedy. But he still defends his exclusive principles, and inculcates the duty of churchmen to keep aloof from union with other denominations. Nevertheless, says he, “ We are a peaceable people, seeking no dissensions, but truly desirous to avoid them whenever we may." We too are a peaceable people, willing that our Episcopal brethren, of the common faith, should enjoy unmolested their own mode of worship. But we must occasionally, for the love of truth, examine the high pretensions which exclude us from covenant mercy, and pronounce our ministrations irregular and invalid. If we are compared to " a body maimed or mutilated,” (p. 347,) we must maintain our soundness, and now and then re-church ourselves. We doubt not, that we shall be relieved at length from this unwelcome labor, for in the progress of holiness, every christian church
will return to more simple and scriptural views of religion, and then our claims will be the better appreciated. Dr. Morrison, writing from China to the Congregational Union of England and Wales, expresses his congratulation at its formation, and his conviction, " that the Congregational form of church government is, besides being more scriptural, more adapted than any other for planting christianity in heathen lands, on account of its being more simple and less sectarian. The longer be lived, the more he saw of the evils resulting from the exclusive pretensions of Episcopacy.” In view of the work submitted to our readers, we admit, that it is written with as much candor as could be expected from one who views every thing in the same light. But we confess, that the plan of union offered by bishop Hopkins, which he properly calls “a reverie," seems to us, at present a hopeless
He proposes "an universal council," —a vast Episcopal congress, gathered from the four quarters of the globe, to meet at Philadelphia, on Christmas eve, to examine the bible and “ Apostolic traditions,” and make the holy Catholic church,' ONE CHURCH again.” Such a glorious result cannot be looked for, till the jus divinum of Episcopacy, of Presbyterianism, and of every other ism, shall be given up, and a deeper spirit of holiness shall pervade the church universal, and godliness become, with all saints, the main thing. As a means of conducting us to such a consummation of bliss, we refer ourselves, and bishop Hopkins, (who is familiar with the ancients,) to the diligent study of a passage or two from one of the wisest and best of the apostolic fathers: «Εν γάρ Χριστώ Ιησού ούτε περιτομή τι ισχύει, ούτε ακροβυστία αλλά πίστις δι αγάπης ενεργουμένη. - Ου γαρ εστίν η βασιλεία του θεού βρώσις και πόσις, αλλά δικαιοσύνη και ειρήνη και χαρά εν πνεύματι αγίω. “Ο γαρ εν τούτοις δουλεύων το Χριστό, ευάρεστος των θεώ, και δόκιμος τις ανθρώπους.»
Art. IV.-An INQUIRY CONCERNING THE SOUL.
The objects of sense occupy so large a share of our attention, that we sometimes find it difficult to gain a proper apprehension of spirit though ourselves spiritual. Our views of material objects are clear and abiding, those of spirits, and of things pertaining to them, are often confused and transient. The former present themselves to our mind, as undoubted realities, the latter as almost imaginary and unsubstantial. But why is it, that our conceptions of our own and of surrounding spirits, are so imperfect and defective? Why is our knowledge of spirit so uncertain and unsatisfactory? Why is it so limited in its extent, and in its influences upon our characters? Do we labor under these embarrassments for want of the capacities and means of better and more useful knowledge? or is our ignorance with its attendant evils, the result of negligence and criminal imperfection in the use of those capacities and means of knowledge, which we possess ? The latter is unquestionably the fact. Did we study with suitable attention and diligence the phenomena of spirits, did we carefully observe and consider their operations as developed in ourselves, in others, and in the word and providence of God; we should doubtless attain a degree of knowledge in relation to them, proportioned in some degree to the vast importance of this subject. Under these impressions, the following inquiry has been entered upon, as one of high practical interest. If the writer has been in any degree successful in his search after truth, and in his present attempt to exhibit the same, he indulges the humnble confidence, that so far, at least, important neglected interests will be promoted.
Our remarks on this subject will naturally embrace a variety of topics. And first, as most convenient, we will say a few words respecting
Material objects. All usesul knowledge has relation to beings either created or uncreated. Created beings are of different kinds and orders. Those which are extended, solid, moveable, divisible, inert, and the subjects of attractions and repulsions, are denominated material. The earth is material. So are the numerous chemical and vegetable products which occupy its surface, and the bodies of all its animals. Larger material objects may be resolved into smaller, and complex ones into simple, but no resolution or analysis of them can make them any other than material. In respect to the properties of extension, solidity, mobility, inertia, attraction, repulsion, etc. the part is similar to the whole, and the simple to the compound. The existence of material objects is placed beyond doubt. We have the greatest possible assurance in respect to this subject. It is one in which we feel, that we cannot be mistaken. We know, that the earth is a real existence, and that the land and water, minerals, vegetables, and animals, which occupy its surface, are not all an illusion. They cannot be so. We know this of our own bodies as well as of thousands of other objects. But how do we know it? By the evidence of our senses, of testimony, and of reason. Material objects are objects of sense.
We have handled them, and thus been assured of their existence, and informed of their properties by the sense of touch. We have seen them, and been confirmed in the revelations of other senses by the agency of sight. The contemporaneous and harmonious exercise of the different senses, has uniformly led to the perception of material objects. The perceptions of every sense have concurred in forcing upon us the conviction of the reality of those objects to which they relate.
Some knowledge of the existence and properties of material objects being obtained by the exercise of the senses, this is increased and perfected by information derived from others. The former constitutes the basis on which the latter is capable of being firmly built. The revelations of sense are preparatory to those of testimony. They are necessary as the elements of knowledge, and lay a foundation for certainty in the apprehension of many truths, which are evidenced to us directly by other means. By far the greater part of our knowledge, in respect to the existence and character of material objects, is derived from others. This is particularly true in the wide fields of history and geography, as also in many more. We are as certain of the existence and character of many objects, which have never been brought under the cognizance of our senses, as we are of any thing within the sphere of knowledge.
Reason is a further source from whence we derive our knowledge of the existence and character of material objects, analagous to that of the senses and of testimony, and subsidiary to both. This faculty is chiefly concerned in the attainment of that knowledge which is the result of comparison and inference. The perceptions of reason though less direct are not less certain than those of sense. The knowledge of which it is the occasion, is extensive and valuable.
Our knowledge of material objects, relates to the fact of their existence, and to some of their properties and relations. As to their existence, it is in many cases certain and perfect. The same is true in respect to some, but not all, of their properties and relations. The properties and relations of material objects, comprehend a field of inquiry which is of vast extent. It has never been fully surveyed by any human mind, or by all human minds taken together. None but God is competent to understand it perfectly. Our knowledge of any material object comprehends; (1.) its existence; (2.) some of its properties and relations. Nothing more. Our knowledge of the existence of an object, is consequent on that of some of its properties and relations. A siogle property or relation, indicates an existing object to which the property or relation belongs. This indication of existence is unambiguous and decisive. It establishes that fact beyond reasonable doubt or successful cavil. Evidence of this kind is all the proof of the existence of external objects, which we can obtain. The nature of the case admits nothing more ; but this it demands and affords. The extent and limitation of human knowledge in respect to material objects, ought to be carefully marked previous to en
tering on a higher field of inquiry. Clearness and discrimination are preparatory to the investigation of those objects which are not material. If our views of matter are indistinct and dim, those of mind will be still more so. If those of the former are clear and well-defined, we shall be able to prosecute with some pleasure and success the investigation of the latter.
Spiritual or immaterial objects. The existence of spiritual like that of material objects is indicated to us by their phenomena. The essence of spirit like that of matter is not subject to human apprehension. It is high as heaven, what can we know of it ; deep as hell, what can we do in respect to it? Indeed nothing. If, therefore we cannot learn the existence of spirits from their properties and relations, we cannot learn it at all ; and if we cannot ascertain some of their properties and relations, we can know nothing about the objects which they characterize. This is a very important department of knowledge, not merely of speculation and conjecture. Upon our proficiency in it, our final'allotment and eternal destiny will in a measure depend. Ignorance of our spiritual natures and interests, is of the most dangerous tendency; and the voluntary indulgence of it, is the height of folly and sin. The phenomena which indicates the existence of spirits, are perception, affection, memory, imagination, reason, conscience, volition, consciousness. Men are the subjects of all these phenomena. They perceive, feel, remember, imagine, reason, will, and are conscious of performing all these mental processes. These phenomena therefore, must be referred exclusively to the human body, or else to a higher principle connected with it. The various modes of thought and feeling are affections and states of the body merely, or else of a different or higher kind of existence connected with it.
1. They do not belong to the body exclusively : because, that can exist in a perfect state without them, and in an imperfect state with them. Death may be produced without disorganizing any part of the body; thus showing, that life and its attendant phenomena are not material. So life may be continued in all its power after very great disorganization and derangement of the bodily organs has taken place, thus establishing by a different method the same conclusion.
2. Because the organs of sense may be impaired or entirely destroyed without injuring in the least the agent of perception.
of sight, or any other organ of sense may be impaired or entirely destroyed while the agent of perception—that which saw through the medium of the eye, or perceived in any way, through the medium of any sense-remains as vigorous as before. The agent of perception in Milton lost none of its energy when the organ of sight was destroyed. It was still clothed with