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a far greater perfection than the creation of any number of finite effects, and the mind may feel constrained to refer such production to God. So be it. But must the infinite effect fall within the realm of contingency, of time, of space? Must it not, on the contrary, belong to the sphere of the essential, the eternal, the absolute? Must it not lie within instead of without the Godhead? Must it not be such an effect as theologians mean when they speak of the eternal generation of the Word or the eternal procession of the Holy Spirit? It cannot, I think, be such an effect as external creation. God can never find or produce without Himself an object equal to Himself and fully commensurate with His essential, necessary activity and love. The Divine nature must have in itself a plenitude of power and glory to which the production of numberless worlds can add nothing.
Any difficulties not merely verbal and manifestly superficial which pantheists have raised as to the nature of the Divine personality likewise lead, I believe, to the conclusion, not that we should reject theism, but that we should reverence and appreciate more highly the Christian doctrine of the Trinity—a mystery indeed, yet one which explains many other mysteries, and which sheds a marvellous light on God, on nature, and on man. I have appealed, however, throughout this course of lectures, only to reason; and I am quite willing that my arguments against pantheism and all other anti-theistic theories, as well as my arguments on behalf of theism, should be judged of by reason alone, without my reference to revelation.
I now bring these lectures to a close. It is with the trust that they may not have been wholly unprofitable to you, or unaccompanied by the blessing of God. To His name be honour and glory for ever. Amen.
Note L, page 3.
The Terms Theism, Deism, Atheism, And
There is considerable uncertainty as to the derivation of thebs, the term from which comes theism. Herodotus (ii. 52) traces it to tithinai, to place or set. The Pelasgians, he says, did not give particular names to their gods, but "called them theoi, because of having placed (thentes) all things in order." Were this etymology correct, the recognition of order was what moved the Pelasgians to designate the objects of their worship theoi. On this supposition the Greek name for God was an immediate creation of the theological principle—an expression or deposit of the design argument. Herodotus believed it to be so.
Plato (Cratylus, xvi. 397) derives thebs from theein, to run. He represents Socrates as saying that "the first men connected with Greece considered those only as gods, whom many of the barbarians at present regard as such,—the sun, and the moon, and the earth, and the stars, and the heavens. Now as they perceived all these moving and running round in a perpetual course, from this nature of running they called them gods (airo Tax/Try; Ttjs <£ucrta>s Tt;s Tov 6tiv Oeovs avroiis CTrovo/xotrat); but afterwards, perceiving that there were others, they called them all by the same name."
When the philological importance of Sanscrit began to be realised, the derivations of the term from Greek fell into disfavour, and it was almost universally supposed to have come from the root div (shining), like the Sanscrit deva, Latin deus, divus, and the Greek Zeus. This derivation is now, however, rejected by some of the highest authorities. Schleicher went back to the etymology suggested by Plato; Hainebach has defended that given by Herodotus; and Curtius inclines to derive from a root 0« (to beseech). Fick decides in favour of a Sanscrit root dhi, to shine, to look, to be pious. If the last of these views be correct, the root thought of theos and deus is the same, although each has had its own root-word. It seems certain that they cannot have grown out of the same verbal root.
Deism is distinguished from theism by probably all recent theologians in substantially the same manner. Some oppose it to theism; others include it in theism as a species in a genus; but this does not prevent their agreeing as to the distinction to be drawn. Deism is regarded as, in common with theism, holding, in opposition to atheism, that there is a God, and, in opposition to pantheism, that God is distinct from the world, but as differing from theism in maintaining that God is separate from the world, having endowed it with self-sustaining and self-acting powers, and then abandoned it to itself. Writing of my previous volume, Mr Bradlaugh (Nat. Ref., Jan. 6, 1878) says: "You draw a distinction between deism and theism (p. 91), for which I am not aware that there is any warranty. Surely both deist and theist mean precisely the same—viz., believer in 'Deus,' ' Theos,' ' God.' You may have any qualifying words to express the character of the belief, as Christian Theism, or Mahommedan Theism, but I do not understand that the use of the Latin or Greek form conveys, or ought to convey, any different or distinguishable meaning." In reply, I would observe that the distinction is not at all of my drawing, but one made use of by all contemporary Christian apologists. The distinction is, further, a real distinction, yet one which, so far as I know, there is no suitable qualifying word to express. Terms like Christian and Mohammedan certainly do not, as they merely characterise different forms of theism proper, or at least of theism as distinguished from deism. On this account it seems to me that the distinction would have been warranted even had the etymology of deism and theism been the same, whereas this is, as has been already indicated, extremely doubtful.
At the same time it must be admitted that the word "deist," when used in the manner indicated, may occasion injustice. It may be confounded—and in fact often is confounded—with a different application of the term,— with what may be called its historical application. Christian apologists, as a rule, when speaking of the so-called "English deists," represent them as having denied that God was present and active in the laws of nature. This is erroneous and unfair. One or two of them may have done so, but certainly what as a body they denied was merely that God worked otherwise than through natural laws. It is curious that the orthodox writers who first