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the Church, and to instruct you in the knowledge of yourself? What is the difference between the literary and spiritual preparation for Holy Orders ? What are the characteristics of personal religion? What is the outward call to the ministry? What is the inward call ? Is the inward call sufficient without the outward ? Will the outward call succeed without the inward ?"
These last questions, with many more leading specially to reflection on the Holy Spirit's office, as the teacher of men's hearts, are an index to the Bishop's own mind, in which high views of the necessity of personal spirituality, and a no less bumble and entire obedience to the teaching of the Church were eminently blended. One or two other traits of his character deserve especial mention. He was utterly above the love of money. In order to provide a less incompetent endowment for the bishopric of St. David's, he sacrificed his claim to fines, amounting to not less than 30,0001. that, by making out the leases, he might restore to his successors the full rental of the Church's lands. In this he succeeded, having obtained an Act of Parliament, when a part of the leases had fallen in, restraining himself and his successors from granting renewals. Nor while free from the love of money, was he the slave of an earthly ambition. He took little part in politics, except in those cases where political became in fact religious questions. Thus on what is called the Roman Catholic Emancipation question, he raised ever his warning voice, denouncing the admission of those schismatics into the political constitution as the transfusion of a deadly influence into the circulation of the nation. Perhaps he did not enough consider that the influence which he deprecated had been really given them with the first grant of the elective franchise.
A great part of the Bishop's leisure hours were given up to a discussion, with which all our readers are probably familiar, on the authenticity of the disputed verse, 1 John v. 7. He warmly advocated the correctness of the authorized version. Some of his arguments are not without the merit of considerable ingenuity; but we cannot rank him as a powerful controversialist. He seldom meets a difficulty fully; contenting himself for the most part with seizing some one assailable point; often a minute verbal criticism ; which leaves at last the general question really unaffected.
But in one respect at least he was remarkable as a controversial writer. In that thorny region he gathered thornless roses. Even the acrimony of the “odium theologicum could not corrode his habitual kindness of temper. He strove earnestly, as they must strive who strive for truth; and yet we believe that not one word of a harsh or wounding character can be gathered from his writings. And surely there will come a time when to have had a heart thus meek in charity will be found to be a higher honour than to have wielded weapons of such acrimonious keenness as the gifted but unfortunate Porson.
The sands of such a life ran out as might have been expected, quietly. He had been always a very temperate man; and, though a hard student, old age laid its hand gently upon him. He was near fourscore, and still able to enjoy life as well as discharge its duties, (with his library table covered with the standard Theological works of the day, and a correspondence both of business and of literature still maintained), when
• If ever," says
in June 1835, whilst administering the rite of confirmation, in which he had always taken a peculiar interest, he was first seized with a paralytic affection. Though overcome for the time, he rallied sufficiently to be again capable of intellectual as well as physical exertion : and it was eighteen months afterwards, in the inclement weather of January, 1837, that he began visibly to sink. At this season the good man was gathering himself up for his far journey. " Grounds of Christian Consolation,” which he had culled from amongst the most blessed promises of God's word, were ever in his mouth and heart, and “ christian recollections" repeated to himself to cheer the days of darkness which had at last fallen upon him. Yet dark, in truth, they were not; for though the natural light was clouded over, though they that look out of the window were darkened, though a thick shadow was passing upon life itself, yet still he could "recollect” with joy "that God sent his Son into the world to be the Saviour of the world ; that the Son of God came into the world to save sinners by His death on the cross; and that the Holy Spirit of God is the Teacher, Instructor, Comforter, and Sanctifier, and that through Him only we believe in Christ."
Such thoughts lightened the gate of death, through which he was already passing. Strong in their strength, at two in the morning of Sunday, February 19," he gathered up his feet into the bed and gave up the ghost," at the patriarchal age of eighty years. a near connexion, who saw the interior of his conduct for these last four years, "there was an upright and holy man, whose single aim and object was to exercise himself to have a conscience void of offence both towards God and towards man, it was he. .... I can truly comprehend the feeling which prompted Bishop Burnet to say, with respect to his intercourse with Archbishop Leighton, 'for what I have seen and heard of him I know that I shall have to give account to God in a most particular manner.'
It only remains for us to speak of the work of the author of this volume. Mr. Harford writes in a clear and easy style, which every where gives evidence of classical elegance and attainment. It abounds in passing allusions to the literary anecdotes and religious interests of the day. Many of the letters which are sprinkled through his pages will be read with interest by different classes ; whether they are the classical dissertations of Tyrwhitt, the devotional effusions of Simeon, or the semi-playful semi-religious letters of Hannah More, who retained her full flow of gaiety both in thought and expression, even to the days when, at the “great age of eighty-four,” she had “a visit from dear Mr. Wilberforce," whom she still found" all life and spirit.” “ He and you," she writes to Bishop Burgess, “ are, I think, my two oldest and best friends. Of my first set of contemporaries, not one is left. I mean the Johnsons, the Burkes, the Beatties, the Reynolds's, the Porteus's, the Barringtons, &c. &c." Upon the whole, we can fearlessly recommend this volume to all our readers.
ART. III.-The Victory of Faith, and other Sermons. By JULIUS
Charles Hare, M. A., Rector of Herstmonceux, and late Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge. Cambridge: Deightons. London: Parker. 1840. 8vo. Pp. 383.
The name of Hare ought, we think, to be a favourite one with the lovers of christian literature. Few books so unpretending in title and professed purpose as the “Guesses at Truth” (the joint production of the author now before us and his lamented brother) are more calculated in our judgment to be extensively useful. Of that brother's sermons we need not speak now, the public voice having spoken so decidedly and so approvingly.
The volume now before us comes then with no inconsiderable amount of our prepossessions in its favour; prepossessions enhanced by our gratitude towards and veneration for the scenes at and occasions on which several of the sermons it contains were delivered. Seven of them were preached before the University of Cambridge ; and surely the world besides hardly affords a position of more striking and commanding interest than the pulpits of our two universities. Truly the churches which contain them fitly bear the same name, and have received the same dedication, if we view this as a symbol of their identity in calling and function. A man like Archdeacon Hare must feel it a solemn and awful moment of his life when he enters the pulpit, girded for the task of addressing the mental aristocracy of England, --the first of “ earth’s first blood," —must feel bound to put forth the full powers of his mind, and to use all the resources supplied him by his manifold accomplishments and learning; seeing that with such an audience there is unlimited scope for all that can be brought forward by the christian scholar and the christian philosopher. The other sermons in this volume were delivered on very similar occasions, and are therefore entitled to assume a similar character, and take a similar range; two of them having been preached in Trinity College Chapel, one at a visitation, while that which concludes the volume was addressed to the author's countrymen at Rome-a place and an audience surely of no common interest.
Finally, the expectations to which these circumstances give rise, are raised yet a step higher by the subjects of the sermons, one and all of which are of deep and general concern. “ The Victory of Faith" is the title of the first six, which form a course delivered by the author last year, in discharge of his duties as one of the select preachers. The text of five of them is one to which our thoughts are vaturally led by the title of the series—"this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith” (1 John v. 4); while that of the sixth is the neighbouring and cognate verse,
" Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God ?" To these six, as forming a connected whole, and as standing first in the volume, we shall in the first instance betake ourselves.
The scope and purpose of the course will be best given in the author's own words. Having quoted the assertion of Bishop Taylor, that “the faith of a Christian has more in it of the will than of the understanding," Archdeacon Hare proceeds as follows:
“ To establish and illustrate this truth-to set forth the kingdom and the power and the glory of faith, so far as the Spirit of God shall enable me to look into its mysteries,—and to show how faith, under one relation or other, has always been the main agent in whatsoever man has accomplished toward overcoming the world,-—will be the aim of the following sermons.”—Pp. 21, 22.
The topic is handled in a way which must satisfy even such expec. tations as those to which we have adverted. It is beautifully treated throughout, with much earnestness and depth of thought, much play of fancy, and with that command of language which the author's extensive scholarship (in his mother tongue no less than in others) could hardly fail to have given him when joined with natural powers such as his. If we must be critical, our modification of this praise,--our complaint against the author, is, on the score of excess in these merits,—that we get fatigued by their abundance,--that they retard the progress of the subject,--and that wearied by piquancy, we sometimes almost sigh for a humdrum page or passage, and if so, assuredly sigh in vain.
We fear, too, that such of Archdeacon Hare's readers as are debarred by circumstances from regular earnest study, will complain of frequent difficulty; for he has a glancing habit of mind which looks both to the right and to the left of his main thought, and sees divers collateral ones rising around it. This, no doubt, as a property of his own mind, is a very valuable one, and gives additional value to the general results he arrives at. But, though an admirable element in the process of arriving at those results, it is not always a desirable one in that of communicating them to others. It is in reality insisting on their working out for themselves what has been the task of the author—a labour very rightly imposed in some cases, (as for example by Bishop Butler on his readers,) but not, we think, when preaching on the great practical verities of our religion. The late Mr. Hazlitt, we believe, objected to Coleridge as a prose writer, that he was unable to resist a motive ; meaning, we take it, that whatever he felt a desire to say, he never refrained from saying ; so as to deprive his works of unity of scope, and toss the dizzy reader to and fro with every shifting breeze of his thoughts. Archdeacon Hare is, we think, somewhat liable to the same charge ; at times he dissipates, where he ought to fix the attention.
But let us not dwell on faults where the merits so greatly preponderate. If our last remarks should have the effect of weakening any one's purpose of reading the volume before us, they would produce a result most alien to our wishes. We have already said something of its claims on their attention; and if we have hinted at the possibility of some finding it difficult, we hasten to assure them that it is more than commonly full of attractions, which tend to relieve such difficulty ; and, moreover, is of a practical rather than a theoretical or scientific character; the author having apparently reserved nearly every thing speculative or controversial for an appendix, which has not yet appeared. In the mean time, as we have already said, he has enforced most solemn and concerning truths, with an earnestness befitting their importance, and an eloquence suited to their dignity.
His fancy is very lively, leading him to bring out truth rather by illustrations and analogies than by logic; and though some of these are more startling than agreeable, yet others are characterised by great felicity and beauty. Take the following as specimens. In Sermon I. when speaking of the way in which a witness for God and for good was
kept up among fallen men, even before the achievement of redemption, the author presents us with this beautiful passage:
Nor was man without monitors to remind him that he should endeavour to purify his life from the worst, at least, of the evils that beset him. His very pride called up the thought of his superiority to all creatures, whether animate or inanimate, that he saw around him; and warned him that he ought to have nobler purposes and higher aims than any sensual or worldly gratification can yield. *Conscience sounded through the wreck of his soul, like the wind whistling through the ruins of a city that once bore the sceptre of empire, Babylon, or Palmyra, or the Egyptian Thebes, admonishing him that the edifices, of which he saw the fragments, had been built and held together by law, and that with the decay of law had been their destruction.-P. 5.
Still more striking is the following illustration of the insufficiency of ethics, without the faith of the gospel.
Their (the heathens'] love was imperfect, because it wanted the love of God: their moral speculations were imperfect, because they wanted the notion of their duty to God, and of their relations to him. In a word, each wanted the groundwork and consummating principle of faith. In every part of the earth, some aspirations rose from the heart of humanity heavenward. In one country they might be rude, and rugged, and insulated, starting up from the midst of a dreary waste, like the ruins
of Stonehenge. In another country they might be carved and polished, and connected by figured friezes, and ranged in beautiful symmetry, and surrounded by a luxuriant cultivation, like the temples of the Greeks. But everywhere they were empty and roofless; no covering from on high had descended upon them ; no headstone had placed itself at top of them, to turn them into a church.-P. 12.
The second and third Sermons, the former entitled, “ Faith a Practical Principle," and the latter, " the Office and Province of Faith," are full of valuable matter. We have only room, however, for one extract, bearing on a most important subject. There is a sense in which the body of doctrine insisted on by the Church may be admitted to have expanded. Not that a single article has ever been lawfully added to the original revelation ; not that we may insist on a single doctrine extraneous to the apostolic legacy; but that as heresies one by one arose, definite statements became needful, where it was enough that the truth existed by implication before. This principle justified the Nicene fathers in imposing the Homoousion; and the recollection of it in regard to the doctrine of justification by faith, serves to remove any uneasiness that may be felt on observing the absence of formal statements of it for the first fifteen centuries. But we will leave this in the hands of Archdeacon Hare.
In Christianity, as in every thing else that enters into the region of time, there is one side which is variable and progressive, as well as one which is permanent and unchanging. Christ, as God, is the same yesterday, to-day, and for ever :' as Man, he grew in wisdom and in stature, and in favour with God and man. So too in a certain sense has it been with Christianity, even from the very first. Therefore was it of such importance, that the Church should combine the wisdom of the serpent with the harmlessness of the dove; that it should become all things to all men, so that every variety of character, which the diversity of climes or of ages might call forth among mankind, should be hallowed by faith; that every thought and feeling might stand exalted and glorified in the spiritual firinament of faith. Thus, when the Gentiles were