« PreviousContinue »
Something of the same sort of objection attends some portions of Mr. G. W. Cox's interesting Life of S. Boniface,'(Masters) which appears to be in form and style intended to range with the Lives of the English Saints,' published some years ago.
Two exceedingly interesting Manuals have reached us from that publisher of pleasant books, Mr. Van Voorst-Mr. Goss' Naturalist's Rambles on the Devonshire Coast,' and Dr. Cocks' practical "Sea-Weed Collector's Guide.' Mr. Goss is a favourable instance of the genial temper and warm sympathetic mind which the study of natural objects has, under good circumstances, a tendency to produce. But, beside his amiable moral tone, we can speak well of Mr. Goss's scientific attainments; he seems at home on all subjects-ornithology, as his Jamaica volume shows; in shells, seaweed, sea-animals, and especially in a keen sense of natural scenery, which he has great powers in describing.
• The Correspondence between Archdeacon Denison and Bishop Spenser,' (Rivingtons,) and a 'Supplement,' (Masters,) is not a little painful, we should say; not that the Archdeacon is not in some of his statements (for we cannot exactly reconcile all that he has written) quite right; nor should we say that the Bishop means to be wrong. But there is a good deal of precipitate language, and more precipitate action, which we deplore. And the challenge to refer the subject-and such a subject-to the Privy Council, was one for an individual to make in haste, and for the Church to deplore at leisure. However, from all that we can learn, there is no likelihood of things coming to this deplorable result.
We have in type an article on · Archdeacon Wilberforce's recent work on the Eucharist' (Mozley.)
The Bishop of Brechin's adaptation of Arvisené's Memoriale Vitæ Sacerdotalis,' (Masters) we recommend highly. It is deep and religious, without fanaticism; and the author has, in many respects, affinities to ourselves, from his date and country, which render his work not only a beau. tiful picture, but a useful manual.
The number of new Forms of Family Prayer is, on the one side, a hopeful sign; but their needless multiplicity betrays a restlessness with which we cannot feel satisfied. So is it with other devotional works; there is no call to bring out a whole crop of such manuals, because it is the publisbing season. We have no particular fault to find with the following, but we may say that we have seen as good books, and according to the taste of each writer, which varies considerably, as good fulfilments of his own religious type and sentiment. 1. • Book of Family Prayers, by the Sacrist of Durham,' (Pickering.) 2. • The Householder's Manual of Family Prayer,' by Mr. Thornton, of Dodford, (Pickering.) 3. 'Book of Family Prayers,' by a Layman, (Masters.) 4. “Daily Prayers for Priest and People, (Masters.)
We prefer to the above the short and useful “Prayers for the Sick and Dying,' by the authoress, herself trained in sorrows; of Sickness, its Trials, and Blessings,' (Rivingtons ;) and a Manual for Mourners,' (Masters,) which has a practical Preface.
We much prefer Sir Charles Anderson's 'Eight Weeks' Journal in Norway,' (Rivingtons,) to Hollway's 'Month in Norway,'(Murray,)1 an instalment of that publisher's excellent 'Railway Reading.' Mr. Hollway is useful to other tourists in his details of horses and provisions; but he gives no picture of the place or people. Sir Charles presents us with both. He has paid great attention to the ecclesiology of the country; and his pleasant volume is illustrated wifh some slight but suggestive anastatic sketches. The writer's sense of scenery is keen and sympathising.
Another volume of the ' Monthly Packet,' (Mozley,) attests the diligence of the writers and care of its editor. We consider it and J. H. Parker's 'National Miscellany' the first in their respective spheres.
We hail Mr. Routledge's one volume edition of 'Dryden's Poet:cal Works.' It is complete, and a great acquisition to the student, as well as boon to the general reader. It is part of a series, of which we have only seen this specimen, which is nicely illustrated.
A very clever and spirited translation of Tnsso's ' Jerusalem Delivered,' by Capt. Robertson, (Blackwood,) will quite supersede Whiffin: though our allegiance to Fairfax's stately version is not quite obliterated.
Of single Sermons, we have to specify, 1. Mr. Jones', preached at Leicester, 'The Teaching of the Church of England on the Sacraments not uncertain,' (Rivingtons.) 2. 'The Spiritual Body of Christ, a Proof of His Resurrection,' by Mr. Reichel, of Trin. Coll. Dublin. (Hodges & Smith.) 3. A Sermon preached at Greywell, on Good Friday, by Mr. A. Lush, (Mozley,) ' On the Privileges of the Blessed Virgin,' which contains nothing, as we are glad to find the Bishop of Winchester testifies, contrary to the doctrine of the Church of England. It is a very good Sermon, but ought not to have been delivered on Good Friday, which entirely supersedes the Festival of the Annunciation. 4. 'A Sermon in aid of the Training Institution for Nurses,' preached at Tottenham, by Mr. Giraud. (Rivingtons.) 5. 'Two Funeral Sermons,' by Mr. Fowle, of Amesbury, (Mozley,) on a sad local event. 6. 'Good Deeds graciously Remembered,' (Hayes,) an appropriate and delicate recognition, by Mr. Liddcll, of the work achieved at S. Barnabas. 7. A University Sermon, 'Jehovah Goaleuu,' by Mr. Gaudell. (J. H. Parker.) 8. Dr. Jcnne's 'Sermon preached at the Consecration of the Bishop of Lincoln;' somewhat above the mark which might have been expected. (Skeffington.) 9. The Bishop of Oxford's 'Doom of the Unfaithful Instrument,' (J. H. Parker,) a most impressive University Sermon. 10. 'Can the Church of England consent to teach without the Catechism 1' (J. H. Parker,) by Mr. Collingwood, to whose name we regret that we have to prefix the word ' the late.' And 11. * Paradise the Home of Happy Souls after Death,' (Bosworth,) by Mr. Willmott, of Bearwood, a Visitation Sermon, giving scope to the author's richness, or rather redundancy, of diction.
Art. I.—1. The Doctrine of the Holy Eucharist. By Robert Isaac Wilberforce, A.M., Archdeacon of the East Riding. London: Mozleys. 1853.
2. The Presence of Christ in the Holy Eucharist. A Sermon preached before the University, in the Cathedral Church of Christ, in Oxford, on the 2d Sunday after Epiphany 1853. By the Rev. E. B. Pusey, D.D., Regius Professor of Hebrew, Canon of Christ Church, late Fellow of Oriel College. Oxford and London: J. H. Parker. London: liivingtons. 1853.
3. The Real Presence. A Sermon preached in the Cathedral Church of S. Andrew, Wells, on Sunday, August 7, 1853. By G. A. Denison, M.A. Archdeacon of Taunton. With a Preface, explaining the Circumstances under which the Sermon has
been preached and published, and Appendix. Second Edition. London: Masters. 1853.
Christians of all denominations, from Pius IX. to Dr. dimming,—and the series might be extended at both ends,— still have some reverence for the authority of S. Paul, and believe that the maxims and principles which he taught are more or less applicable, even at the present day. We try, but with no very great success, all to ' think the same thing,' some by compelling others to think with them by persecutions and censures, others doing the same by reasoning, or eloquence, or confident assertion, a few by doing their best to understand and be understood. And as we cannot, after all, accomplish this desirable object, we are aware that we ought, in some sense, and to some extent, to practise that forbearance and allowance for others which he recommended with respect to the great controversy, within the Church, of his day—the question of the observance of the Ceremonial Law. 'Let not him that eateth despise him that eateth not, 'and let not him which eateth not judge him that eateth; for 'God hath received him.'' To the disputants, doubtless, these questions seemed of vital importance, nor were they unimportant in the view of S. Paul, for he withstood S. Peter to the face in defence of the Gentiles' right, and pronounced the teacher of' another Gospel' accursed; and exclaimed,' O foolish 'Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey 'the truth ?'' Yet, in this very controversy, he could teach forbearance, lest any should be lost for whom Christ died. And, at all times, the controversy of the day will be felt to be important, and will call for decisive action, and clearness of statement. Yet it will always be the point on which these principles of mutual forbearance will most need to be put in practice, however difficult it may be to discern the limits of their application.
'Rom. xiv 3. NO. I.XXXII.—N. S. T
Such a question is now, amongst ourselves, the Doctrine of the Sacraments, and the light in which they are to be viewed. And amongst Churchmen the greatest difficulties have of late arisen on the subject of the Holy Eucharist, while they are agreed as to maintaining, in some sense, the efficacy of Baptism. For there is clearly a farther mystery in this ease than in that of the other Sacrament, and a greater apparent division between the Anglican and at least other Western Churches. And there is especial room for the characteristic working of two very distinct classes of minds, for whose natural peculiarities we must certainly make some room and allowance, if the Church is not to lose, on one side or on the other, a third part of her members. For the disposition to rest in known causes, and to doubt all that is not accounted for by them, and the disposition to seek, and always to suspect, some mysterious and hidden agency, are inherent in different minds, and scarcely eradicable by any discipline. To reason and to doubt in the one class, to wonder and to believe in the other, are almost irresistible tendencies. And though they must, in either case, be under some restraint, if consent in any scheme of action or of belief is to be maintained, yet they will have some scope, and some allowance must be made for them, so long as men claim, in any measure, to agree together.
If there is any subject which, by its very nature, must incline us to long for charity in our discussions, and unity and peace in our conclusions, it is that of the Holy Eucharist. Itself not only a sign, but a pledge, an element, a bond, a living principle of peace, every Christian must regret that it should give rise to suspicions, recriminations, heart-burnings, and schisms. Yet the interest of the subject, which animates inquiry, and the mystery, which ever eludes it, are sure to give occasion for such evils so long as man is imperfect in knowledge and in love. And there is an especial danger of their arising, when a really searching inquiry is undertaken, unless it be undertaken with that resolution of facing the truth, that abandonment of prejudice, and that patience of attention which ensure the full use, at least, of the materials at the command of the inquirer. To such an inquiry Archdeacon Wilbcrforce invites his reader, and it is not too much to say that his work is one which deserves to be taken up for a more than ordinarily thoughtful reading, with more than ordinary resolutions of impartiality, and with more than ordinary endeavour thoroughly to master various principles, and enter into various ideas. No Christian teacher, indeed, who is honest to himself, can call upon his hearer or reader to renounce all prejudice. A man who is capable of understanding the higher acroamata of Christian doctrine certainly was never meant to do so. He cannot clear out his mind, and make it a perfect ' tabula rasa,' without parting with his belief, and this it wrould be wrong and absurd for him to do without the very strongest reason shown previously. The intellect is capable, indeed, of a kind of abstraction, by which it L;ujiposes itself, for the sake of argument, destitute of convictions which it really possesses, and thus much it may sometimes do with advantage; but a man must unmake himself before he can do away with the tendency of those convictions to sway the balance of his conclusions, and to perpetuate their own force. Even a farther concession may be made, and in this case ought to be made, by recognising the indefiniteness of all parts of belief that are really indefinite, or not defined on certain grounds, and preparing the mind to accept new boundaries, if they shall appear, in the course of the inquiry, to be more exact. Yet this may be done, and ought to be done, without the surrender of any real principle, or substantial conviction of the mind, as a whole, and without admitting even a particle of doubt as to any Truth of the Gospel, or any authoritative expression of it.
'Oal. iii. 1.
For the range of private opinion is large, and few men have any distinct conception of the limits which divide Faith from Opinion. And when the mind has begun to realise the fact that there arc such limits, it is no easy work to learn where they are. The greater part of mankind must cither remain at a very low point in the scale of Theological knowledge, or admit of repeated changes in what they, for a time, suppose to be the limits of dogmatic Faith, although, in a healthy process of inquiry, the real limits of Faith remain fixed, and the change takes place, not in the thing believed, but in the extent to which that thing is apprehended, and the manner in which it is viewed. A statement which, before inquiry, might have excited strong repugnance, may be received, on inquiry, without the slightest shock to the principle of Faith, as a simple and necessary consequence of Truth already believed. Confidence in self may be shaken, but confidence in the general truth and accuracy of dogmatic Christianity may be even strengthened by such