« EelmineJätka »
Paul, by reference to the figura
gorgeous ceremony in which intive language of Malachi, and the cense, and bell-ringing, and lighted typical language applied to Mel- candles, and genuflections without chizedec! Into such an argument number, deck out a service in it would be a waste of time to which the laity, in place of bread enter.
and wine, receive a fragment of a Their only remaining prop is wafer, -while the priests profess found in their usual resort to the to be offering
a sacrifice for the Fathers. Several of these have sins of the living and the dead." called the Lord's Supper “ a sacri- Look, then, to the doctrine of the fice.” We admit it; but in what Apostles touching sacrifices, and sense do they use the term ? we find that “ by ONE OFFERING” Clemens Alexandrinus says, Christ“ HATH perfected for ever earthly altar is the assembly of them that are sanctified." No such as join together in prayer, refuge remains, then, for the dochaving as it were a common voice trine of the Mass, save in the last and mind. For the sacrifice of resort of the Romanists, the grand the church is the word ascending magazine of all kinds of opinions, as incense from holy souls, their the countless tomes of the fathers, sacrifice and their whole minds whence sentences of every hue, being open to God.' And Ter- and proving or disproving, in turn, tullian interprets the very passage every doctrine and every practice in Malachi on which they so of the Church, may at any time greatly rely, thus, “ Here spiritual be found. The main argument, sacrifices are meant, and a contrite however, derived from this source, heart is shewn to be an acceptable is, that the Supper is often called sacrifice to God." +
a sacrifice. We admit this withNever, then, surely, was out hesitation ; but we shew, in strong a case on the one side, op- reply, that the term “ Sacrifice” posed by so weak an one, on the is so vaguely and indiscriminately other. Take the plain narrative of used in their writings, as to render Scripture, and it exhibits to us it absurd to base any doctrine on “ the Lord's Supper” of the Pro- this single expression.
And so testants; but nothing in the least ends the discussion, which I think resembling " the Mass” of the will be inclined to admit, terPapists. Turn to the records of
minates, however imperfectly conthe early church, and again we find ducted on my part, in favour of that a simple commemorative festival, mode of observing our Lord's last without the least trace of the command, which approaches the
nearest to his own practice and * Stromata. Lib. vii. p. 717.
example. t Adversos Judæos. Ch. 5. p. 188.
I remain, your's, &c.
Review of Books.
TRACTS FOR THE TIMES, Four Volumes. Oxford, 1833–1838.
In our former paper
of remarks on throws a spiritual contempt, in the these volumes (see p. 345) we most cool and therefore most noticed somewhat fully the tactics
on those who by means of which the sentiments differ in opinion from the writer, of the New Oxford School are and tends to excite religious selfpropagated : but much was neces- conceit in those who follow his sarily left unsaid, respecting the opinion. It is precisely in that matter of their opinions. We style which we should have exresume the subject of REGENERA- pected to find in religious writers Tion, and propose to consider-I. of the lowest grade. Neither can The scriptural doctrine on that we agree with his argument as subject-II. The conformity of being perfectly good. The necesthe Church of England herein to sity of Baptism rests
on direct Scripture—and, III. The little precept, “Go ye, therefore, and help which the Tract Writers have teach all nations, baptizing them gained from the early Fathers, in the name of the Father, and of towards the support of their own the Son, and of the Holy Ghost,” opinions.
&c. (Matt. xxviii. 19.) The pasI. The doctrine of Scripture on sage in the conversation with the subject of Regeneration is most Nicodemus has been generally concomprehensively referred to in the sidered and may well be regarded well-known words of our Lord to as pointing to the then-future instiNicodemus, John iii. 5. “Except tution of Baptism, and, by natural a man be born of water and of the
consequence, to the necessity of Spirit, he cannot enter into the observing it: but it was the actual kingdom of God.” The other institution itself, just before our passages in the New Testament, Lord's ascension into heaven, that which speak of Regeneration, may determinately fixed the necessity of easily be classed under this one ; that holy sacrament. so that the explanation of this text The question, What is Regewill be virtually the explanation of neration ?' is to be answered from the rest. We cannot however John iii. 5. Is it water-baptism? agree with Professor Pusey when Is it the Spirit's baptism alone ? he says, in pp. 16, 17, of his Is it the new-birth of water and Tract on Baptism:
of the Spirit conjointly? If it be Combined with the consent of anti- the first, then is · Regeneration quity, our Saviour's meaning becomes so identified with Baptism :' we use clear, that, with one who loves bis Saviour, I would gladly rest the whole
the phraseology of Dr. Pusey. question of baptismal regeneration on
That is, water-baptism and regethis single argument. It is confessed neration are one and the that the Christian church uniformly, for thing : so we construe identified.' fourteen centuries, interpreted this text
And this opinion we hold to be of baptism; that on the ground of this text alone, they urged the necessity of
the main error, by which the spibaptism; that upon it, mainly, they rituality of the professing Chrisidentified regeneration with baptism. tian church has often been, and
We do not agree, first, with the generally speaking must be extintone and temper of that opening guished. Is Regeneration the expression, with one who loves Spirit's baptism alone? If it be his Saviour ; ' a phrase, which thus, and thus only, then a mem
ber of the Society of Friends' jesty of Truth, to suppose that the might argue that the outward form ground of Philip's baptizing the of baptism is a matter of no obli- Eunuch with water was merely his gation in the Church of Christ – professed faith : the narrative an error sufficiently refuted by clearly represents him as having in Matt. xxviii. 19, and the other a short time become a sincere and analogous passages in the New true believer in Christ; that is, in Testament, relating either to the the fullest spiritual sense, a regeinstitution, or to the practice, of
nerated man. Baptism. But taking the words In this part of our argument we of our Lord in this simple form, we cannot refrain from noticing the can have no hesitation in saying name of Whitby. When Baptisthat Regeneration in its largest mal Regeneration is to be adsense is, the being born again of vanced, his words are quoted water and of the Spirit: in other with confidence, That our Lord words, we regard the term Rege- here (John iii. 5.) speaks of Bapneration as having a claim to be tismal Regeneration, the whole used in reference both to water Christian church from the beginand to the Spirit conjointly-a ning hath always taught. But claim founded on the adoption of why not quote his subsequent comthat term by our Lord himself-a ment on this verse ? He remarks, term not to be set aside, because referring to the case of adultsit has been abused ; to be guarded
Even when the Holy Ghost was actuhowever by explanations, because
ally fallen upon Cornelius and his friends, of that abuse, which is so natural
St. Peter commands them “ to be baptized to the human mind, and which has in the name of the Lord Jesus ;' i. e. to so frequently and so largely pre
be admitted to be Christ's disciples by vailed in the church.
that rite, and looks upon it as a necessary The main effort of those who
consequent upon that higher baptism. uphold and aim at propagating the • That higher baptism !' we see abuse alluded to, is directed to then, according to the view of this point : namely, to the repre- Whitby, that water-baptism, and senting of Regeneration as one the gift of the Spirit are not necomplex act, in which the outward cessarily contemporaneous: still less sign and the inward grace, are in
is the being born of the Spirit condissolubly, and at the same time, sequent on being born of water. united. This then is the error Well might the Tract Writers against which the strongest and omit Whitby in their Tract No. plainest arguments should be ad- He would have proved but duced. We will offer two.
a broken link to them in their 1. First, we observe concerning chain of modern fathers. adults, that when they receive the 2. The other consideration, by grace of God, so as truly to re- which to oppose what may convepent, believe, and live a life of niently enough be called the holiness, they plainly have been synchronic theory,' is, that Rege“ born of God,” " born of the neration is indisputably attributed Spirit,” even before they are bap- to the word of God; that is, his tized : and they receive water- word is represented as the means baptism after their Regeneration, by which he works the great both in order to the increase of change in the soul of a true believgrace, and also as a sign of their * Of his own will begat he us profession of the faith. Thus the with the word of truth.” (James two are separable, not only in i. 18.) Yet the hearing of the idea, but in fact; for it would be word, and the regeneration of the trifing unpardonably with the ma- soul by that word, are not always,
perhaps not generally, contempo- ministration of the outward rite,
Many converts have and the communication of the heard and read the word thousands Spirit's influence, are necessarily of times, before they were rege- and absolutely contemporaneous. nerated. The fact to be inferred To say of the baptized, that they is, that an appointed means may are “born of water” is scriptural; be used at one time, and its ap- but the observation of Whitby pointed blessing may take place at should be remembered, that 'to be another very distant period. There born of water is a phrase never is no law revealed to man, con- used in scripture, for being born cerning the method in which the
of the Spirit. Sovereign Head of the church The error of those who hold what operates in regard to spiritual cau- is called · Baptismal Regenerasation and effectuation. We may tion' appears to spring from their as soon define the connecting prin- carrying their reasonings beyond ciple between body and spirit, as scripture: the contiguity of the determine the precise time, the two.phrases, “born of water,” and manner, or the measure in which “ born of the Spirit,” is with them, God, either to individuals, or to an argument for the contemporacollective bodies, dispenses that neousness of the two : this is an grace which he has promised in error in limine. connection with the use of his own II. We proceed to consider the ordinances. He has appointed his conformity of the Church of Engpure word to be preached, and the land to scripture, on the subject sacraments to be duly ministered. of regeneration. We obey, and we are blessed in It will be thought by some that these fundamental institutions of his the baptismal service of our church visible church ; but we intrude not carries the doctrine further than into his secret counsels, as to the what we have represented to be time or manner of his blessing us. the sense of scripture. If this be
This second argument, we ap- the case-if our church dogmatiprehend, will have very little cally expounds baptism and reweight indeed with those who dis- generation to be identical, or conparage the office of preaching. temporaneous, then all who have This we have understood to be the bound themselves to the church of case with some of the followers of England are in conscience obliged the Tracts. But we appeal to to hold that view of the subject. those who hold entire the valuable But we apprehend the case to be 19th Article of our Church; and far otherwise ; and a brief analysis we would warn our readers against of the service appointed for the those whose element is mystery, Ministration of Public Baptism of or rather mysticism; who decry Infants’ may serve to shew that, argument, as being rationalistic, although that season be to pious and substitute the sacraments alone, ministers, parents, and friends, a as if all in all, in the place of the time for both the prayer of faith, preaching of the pure word of God, and the thanksgiving of hope, yet and the due ministering of the it is by no means to be regarded sacraments.
as a season for dogmatically assertShall we then be justified by ing the regeneration of the bapscripture, in using the term · Bap
Bap- tized infant. tismal Regeneration ?' We ap- Observe, first, how in the preprehend not : for it is not a scrip- fatory remarks, the leading docture phrase ; and moreover it is the trines of original sin, and the nephrase by which those are dis- cessity of baptism and regeneration tinguished, who hold that the ad- are touched briefly, and in the very
language of scripture: no com- gregation present
their ment on them is given, though this, prayers for the true regeneration if desirable, would have been a of the Spirit, and its accompanying most suitable place for stating that blessing of everlasting salvation; by baptism regeneration would be Give thy Holy Spirit to this inconferred. Instead of this, the fant, that he may be born again, company are exhorted to pray for and be made an heir of everlasting regeneration; and in the prayer salvation.' following, that great gift is prayed He who prays in faith, may for in the most comprehensive, yet give thanks in hope. His thankssimple terms. In the prayer next giving, however, is not to be refollowing, there is a yet more garded as a dogmatic declaration special petition, that the right ad- of plenary answer to prayer; but ministration of baptism by the rather as an expression of humble, minister, and the right reception of and thus far, well-satisfied hope, it, and of all consequent blessings, that God has heard the prayer by the infant, may go together and which man has been encouraged to be contemporaneous : for so offer up in faith. As 'we must understand the words, - We call receive God's promises in such wise upon thee for this infant, that he as they be generally set forth to us coming to thy holy baptism, may in holy scripture, (Art. 17.) so receive remission of his sins by should we, after the spiritual regeneration. The ground lively faith, take the comfort of faith, that most important ele- generally that the prayer is now ment of true and acceptable prayer, in course of receiving its answer, is then stated in gospel-language: and it may be, has already rehere, it may be considered, we find ceived the commencement of that the fundamental principle on which
It is thus that (after the we are encouraged to implore the questioning of the sponsors, and greatest of all possible blessings. the administration of baptism) we And what is this gospel-passage,
understand the words of the on which our hopes are to be thanksgiving immediately followfounded? Is it a passage declar- ing the Lord's prayer. Those ing that baptism is regeneration ? words are by far the strongest, No-it is a passage declaring the seemingly, in favour of what is unbounded good will and loving- called baptismal regeneration ; kindness of the Redeemer towards they appear to declare that the little children. It is a portion of infant is now regenerated by the scripture that appeals both to the Holy Spirit. We should be sorry feelings and the understanding. It to adopt that mode of comment is not to be regarded in the light which is properly termed, exof a happy and affecting accom- plaining away: ' but we must modation of scripture narrative. declare our conviction, that, withIt is the sure ground of faith, in out putting a strain upon it, this prayer; of prayer at all times, passage cannot be regarded as a and specially of prayer at this declaratory opinion. It is rather solemn season of using Christ's own that devout expression of joy in holy ordinance of baptism. And God, whose promises are so large, what is prayed for?
that, in intercessory prayer we are generation in the • Tracts' sense ; bound to ask for great things, and for in their sense of the word, re- afterwards to rejoice in the hope generation may be forfeited and that they are granted. And we
But eternal life' is prayed ground this interpretation on a for: and on the strength of ihis variety of considerations, which we evangelical exhortation, the con- will briefly adduce.