Imágenes de página


reference to a passage of Scripture. The book is designed for Bible classes with a competent teacher to explain the references, where explanation is needed, and enlarge upon the questions. The themes state briefly the doc. tripes and duties, and a great variety of topics suggested by the Epistle. It is an admirable form of making Scripture a commentary upon itself. The author, a layman, shows a clear head and patient thought in the prioduction of a useful book. This is not the only method of studying the Ronans, but, of its kind, a very good one. THE LAW OF LOVE, AND LOVE AS A Law; or Christian Ethics. With an Appendix. By Mark Hopkins, D.D., LL D., President of Williams College. Third edition. New York: Scribner & Co. 1871. Pp. 400.

This third edition of a well-known book differs from former editions, und is larger by fifty-eight pages, besides a new preface of eight pages. B-th the new preface, and the additional matter which is in the Appendix, have been occasioned by “the discussions to wbich it has given rise." The Appendix contains two criticisms by Dr. McCosh, two replies by Dr. Hop. kins, Dr. McCoslı's "Summation of the Controversy,” and Dr. Hopkins' "Conclusion” — all originally published, we believe, in the Nero York Obserder. The points raised will be duly notic+d at another time, in an examination of ethical theories by one of the editors of this REVIEW.

The title of the book is now changed from “Moral Science, Theoretical and Practical," to " Christian Ethics." The new riile is certainly more accurate than the old, yet it is not chosen for the same reason for which Dr. Wardlaw once selected it, viz: because the author's work is simply to expound in detail the morality required by Christianity ; but because its generic principle, love, is claimed to be the same with that of Christianity. “Not that philosophy is to be received on the basis of revelation,” says Dr. Hopkins, in his new preface. "" To be a philosophy, it must be received on the basis of reason. But if a revelation really from God teach, or imply, a philosophy, it must coincide with that taught by reason, and ought to be seen thus to coincide." This was tbe aim, however, of Dr. H'pkins' "Lectures on Moral Science.” The present work is denominated “Cbristian," as that was not, because, being largely one of practical details, the coincidenc. is intended to be constantly exhibited and in particulars. This volume takes as its starting-point the conclusion reached in the other.

There are many things in Dr. Hopkios' new preface which provoke remark, e. g., The idea of right I accept – I believe in it is as obligatory

Ι from its relation to good.” Does he mean that the idea is obligatory from such a relation? The grammatical construction would favor this meaning. Or is the meaning, “I believe in " right "us obligatory from its relation 10, good.” But this implies that “right” and “related to good” are two distinct tbipgs, and that the union of the two - each being an independent, ultimate idea creates obligation; neither of which Dr. H. holds, most certainly. He expressly says: “The choice of the good of all beings us the supreme end," being "required,” “obligation is affirmed at once, without the intervention of the idea of right, and with no place for it unless it

[ocr errors]


be regarded as synonymous with obligation,"— which it certainly is not by Dr. H., or anybody. Again: among the thirteen particulars, into wbich he digests his system (18 previously taught in his “Lectures") the second is this: “Moral actiou is rational, as distinguished from instinctive action." But the thirteenth is this: “As preliminary to” rational action, we have "moral iustincts,” etc. Is the action of these moral instincts itself moral, or not? If so, is it rational ? Again: “ The end which man ought to choose is indicated by his moral nature"- and, as this is “the good of all beings

“ capable of good,” it is difficult to see why his rational nature, pot moral, could not indicate it. Indeed the author implies this when he says that love, as the choice of this good, is “the voice of our moral nature made possible and rational by the rational apprehension of good.” He also implies it when he says that “the choice of this good as the supreme end" is virtue, “as obedience to moral law; as the choice of good it is wisdom." But wisdom is certainly the quality of a rational choice of god, though it be not moral. The author seems to have confounded the mere indication of

the end in view with the affirmation that “men ought to choose” it. · Directly after, he calls the choice of good “virtue," instead of “wisdom,"

as he bad just defined it to be. That the same tbing may be both wisdom and virtue is very true, but that wisdom and virtue are the same thing is quite another matter. Again he says: “Action that would naturally tend to promote this good is right action, and is obligatory from this tendency;" and shortly after, “Love can not be utilitarian;” but as love had been already defined as “the choice of this good as the supreme end,” aud as Jove must be right action, and obligatory from its tendency to promote this good, which is universally recognized as utility, it is difficult to see why love, as here defined by Dr. H., is not precisely utilitariau !

One chapter in the body of the book is re-written, by re-arrangement of paragraphs, the omission of a few sentences and the introduction of a few new ones. It is Chap. I., “Of Law in General.” The attempt in former editions to define law "in its broadest sense,” ¿. e., generically, is here abandoned, and two specific or distinct senses are given instead (which evidently have nothing in common, i. e., no generic element), viz: "a uniform fact,” and “the rule in accordance with which the force acts that causes a uniform fact.” The distinction between liw, as applied to things and as applied to persons, is now much better drawn; in previous editious the former meaning was really stretched over persons as well as things. Civil and moral law are distinguished, but the former is made to relate ouly to "the outward actions of men,” which ignores the many iustances in which the intent must be shown in addition to the outward action, or crime can not be proven; and the latter is made to relate to the will alone, which implies that there is no morality of the the or of the affections, desires, appetites and einotions,* or at least none save as they are the offspring of willing, while it is universally held that impulsive feelings of either sort may be wrong, at least by excess, if the will had nothing to do

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

• Which Dr. H. elsewhere depies.

[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]

with causing them if only it might have prevented them. Moral law is said to have for its object “the control of the will in that which is central (ie, to it,) - its preferences are (and ?) choices.” But in his Baccalaureate of 1869, on Choice and Service, Dr. H. was understood to deny that chrice is an act of will. He confined the terms "willing," "to will,” to executive volition; he affirmed that to will follows to choose, that "choice and will respect different objects,” and that the “original and necessary formy of activity ihrough wbich man knows himself” are pot three thinking, feeling, willing; "in reality they are four – thinking, feeling choosing, willing." He had indeed contradicted this (if we gather his real meaning, taken analytically) in his “Lectures;” but they were published before the Baccalaureate. In the present volume he affirms that moral law, in attempting to “control the will,” has nothing to do with volitions; "it lays its commands npon allowed preferences and choices, and upon them alone;" in which the affirmations and distinctions of the Baccalaureate seem to be entirely disregarded again.

The element of authority in law, as applied to persons — both civil and moral — is also quite ignored. Of the latter, the “conditional i leas” are "alleged to be”: 1. “Being conscious and rational. 2. Free will. 3. An end, which can be koown as such only as there is in it a good; and 4. Obli. gation." In the new preface he had already said that "the affirmation of the obligation to love" "can become luw only as that good (i. e., in the end) is the good of all beings capable of good, or, at least, is compatible with that.” To choose the good of self, then, if incompatible with that, is not obligatory, because it is not a large enough good; but the element of obligation is created simply by the amount of the good sought, not at all by righteous authority. Then such authority can not impose any obligation or originate law; it simply borrows both from the fact that the good of all beings is involved in the love. Law, then, gets all its meariog from this moral philosophy of good, and none from moral government; and Christ bas po authority, really – it all belongs to the "Jaw written on the heart.” But is this “Christian Ethics"! or an ethics of good, i. e., of utility ! wbich could stand on its own feet, independent of Christ, and could deny that what He commands is obligatory, if it does not appear to “naturally tend to promote this good”! Are law including authority, and law minus authority, one and the same?

GEOFFREY THE LOLLARD. By Frances Eastwood. New York: Dodd

& Muad. Chicago : S. C. Griggs & Co. Pp. 342.

We do not know whether these new nublishers have any thoug it of reformiog our Sabbath-school novels — they are novels, m'ist of them - and we can not form any very high expectations of their success, if they do; but certainly tbe substitution of such books as this for much of the trash, the unmitigated trash, read by our Sibbath-schools would be a vast improvement. A picture of the times when a whole Bible was a rarity; wben preaching the gospel was a crime; when to keep the church alive in its purity the Lord bad need of hero-saints, gathering secretly in dens of the mountains and clefts of the rocks; when England was unsafe ante-Reformation piety, and Arundel was thirsting for blood; when English bishops found their chief delight in condemning “heretics” to die for attending worship other than the church allowed, and reading the works of Wickliffe ; with a toucbing and pitiful story set in it of the faith and heroism of two beautiful Lollard children. “The litile Lollard martyr." We have indistinct semi-recollections of having met his story in an English issue before ; but if so, it is well worth reproducing in its present attractive form.


Moses, THE MAN OF GOD: a Course of Lectures by the late James Ham.

ilton, D.D., F.L.S. New York : Carter & Brothers, 530 Broadway. Chicago : Wm. G. Holmes, 148 Lake street.

The name of the author is a sufficient recommendation to this book. A series of lectures, chaste and lucid in style ; an instructive and pleasing presentation of the Man of God at his life-work.



We had prepared brief notices of the following books received, but have only space in this number to acknowledge their reception.

THE KATHIE STORIES. 3 vols., viz. : Kathie's Three Wishes, Kathie's Aunt Ruth, Kathie's Summer at Cedarwood. By Miss A. M. Douglas. 16mo. Pp. 260, 257, 276. $1.25 per volume. Boston: Lee & Shepard; New York : Lee, Shepard & Dillingnam; Chicago : S. C. Griggs & Co.

SPRINGDALE STORIES. 6 vols., illustrated, viz. : Nettie's Trial, Adele, Herbert, Eric, Ennisfellen, Johnstone's Farm. By Mrs. 8. B. C. Samuels. 2 imo. 75 (ts. per vol. Boston: Lee & Shepard ; New York : Lee, Shepard & Dillingham ; Chicago: S. C. Grigys & Co.

ARTHUR Brown, one of the Pleasant Cove Series. By Rev. Elijah Kel. logg Pp. 288.

$1.25. Boston: Lee & Shepard; New York: Lee, Shepard & Dillingham; Chicago: S. C. Griggs & Cu.

From Noyes, Holmes & Co., 117 Washington street, Boston :

Every Day. By the Author of Katherine Morris, Striving and Gaining, etc. 16mo. Pp. 282. $1 50.

From Presbyterian Board of Publication, Philadelphia :
Pilgrim's PROGRESS. By John Bunyan. 16mo. Pp. 500.

THOMAS CHALMERS : a Biographical Study. By James Dodo. New York : T. Nelsou & Sons ; Chicago: W. G. Holmes. 12mo. Pp. 394.

A CRITICAL GREEK AND ENGLISH CONCORDANCE OF THE NEW TESTA: MENT By C. F. Hudson. Boston: Scriptural Tract Repository ; Chicago: W. G. Holmes. 18mo. Pp. 510.


[ocr errors]

MINISTERS AND PEOPLE.—It is a common impression that ministers are somehow, under a different Christian law from their people. Is it so ? " Why, They are MINISTERS!” people say; "of course they will not do as others do.” A professional code is set up for the pastor which none of his flock are expected to live by. It is a vastly higher code than theirs.

There are some things that are professional in a minister's life-professional relations, professional iufluence, professional duties and acts. No one will deny the binding authority of some sort of professional code respecting such things. Dnes it extend, however, an inch beyond purely professional matters? In his human and Christian conduct, is one to be not, like others, a man and a Christian, but only a minister? Or is a minister something else than a Christian? Is the professional code or the Christian one the greater and superior!

Members of churches allow themselves in worldly indulgences in which they would not have their pastor and his wife share on any consideration. They permit to their children what they would regard as incon sistent in a minister's children.” They attend the theatre ; but if they were to meet their spiritual guide there, on a week evening, they would not enjoy his able sermon the next Sabbath. At home they have cards and dancing, but if the “man of God,” to whom they look for an unworldly example, as well as for sound teaching, shonld take part in the allowed and vindicated amusement as a “means of grace," or at least "a bandmaid to religion ” – they would not be present at the next communion season.

How much style and expense should be indulged in one's home? There is uuderstood to be a limit for ministers, but not for Christians as such. Self-denial is bis duty and that of his household, that there inay be an example to the flock (who are not required to follow the example he and his are obliged to set!) and that they may save means from household expenses to do good with (of which others are excused from furnishing their proportion). “The secret error lies," says Prof. Park, in the last Bibliotheca, on another and kindred subject, “in imagining that a minister of the Gospel is required to exercise a peculiar kind of virtue, and that the Bible does not reqnire laymen to be perfect even as their ‘Father in Heaven is perfect.”” “ The wants of the church for pastors will not be met until the public mind is penetrated with the truth that the duties of all men are essentially the same.” Costliness in dwelling and furniture is condemned in a pastor and Cimmended in a parishioner. On what principle ? For a minister, or his wife and children, to lead the fashions is censurable; for other Christians to do it is very well. When and where did the Master authorize any such

[ocr errors]
« AnteriorContinuar »