« AnteriorContinuar »
purport ; and indeed it is allowed probation upon this practice, by a by the writer to be the foundation temperate but firm address to the of his whole argument. Surely it Parent Society. is time for the real friends of the This is not the place to enter Bible Society, and of religion, to upon a discussion on the purity of take the alarm at such statements the - Jewish canon.
I would just as these ; which poison the streams observe, however, that it is a great of the pure water of life, and render mistake to imagine that the inspithe holy Scriptures of no avail to ration of Scripture is a matter the comfort and edification of the which falls more within the range church. Here are no fewer than “ of human opinion and private ten * books of the Bible, placed judgment,” than does the interpreby an anonymous writer in the same tation of Scripture. It cannot be class of composition with Tobit, and more binding upon the conscience Judith! and that—not by any ra- to admit the divine authority of a tional declaration of the grounds of doctrine, than to allow the divine his unbelief in the Jewish canon origin of the Book containing that but by a mere flippancy of state- doctrine. In fact, the one implies ment, unsustained by a single ar- the other, but the real question gument. How much more manly at present agitated in the Bible would it have been, to have made Society is this--not, whether parthe correctness of the canon ticular books in the canon may be subject of separate discussion; than added “ without peril of the soul, to have assumed doubts as to its by those who sincerely believe them integrity, in propping up a weak and to be Scripture, (as may be thought bad cause. Even the Romish the case with the Řomish and church itself is more correct in its Greek churches,). but whether doctrine, than this writer; for though Protestants, who discredit the prethe Council of Trent has added tensions set up for these books, can some books to the canon, it has safely send them forth as the Divine never denied the inspiration of a Oracles. single book which has been handed II. In pointing out several misdown to us as the word of God. It REPRESENTATIONS made by this is not surprising that those who writer, I wish it to be understood entertain such loose sentiments as that I do not charge him with any these, should plead for the circu- discreditable intention. lation of adulterated Bibles ! With 1. He has misrepresented the Resimilar consistency, it is maintained formers, in stating that they “prethat the annexation and the inter- ferred to circulate the English Scripmixture of Apocryphal books, with tures with the Apocrypha, rather the sacred text, is “ a mere question than endanger their rejection, by of preference !” (p. 3)—“ a point disturbing the popular prejudice in of arrangement !" (p. 8.) Let every favour of what had so long passed for pious member of the Society mark an integral part of the holy writings. well the fatal consequences which I have shewn “ Statement,” pp. must be produced by his counte- 13—18) that they did disturb, and nancing the distribution of Bibles, did protest against, this popular prein which the distinction between judice in favour of the Apocrypha, the word of God and the writings as “an integral part” of the word of man is merged. I implore every of God; since they warned their committee throughout the kingdom, readers, in their preface to these to hasten to set their stamp of re- books, to “ take heed and proceed
* He does not, indeed, specify ten; by the living and pithy Scriptures.” but his remarks apply to all the books of
I admit, however, that they would the “ Hagiographa” except the “Psalms.” have done well had they altogether
cut off these writings from the Statement (pp. 14, 15), that the volume of the Bible. But it is not language of the Sixth Article exfor those who now apologize for an pressly excludes such an extension intermingled Apocrypha, to taunt of the term Holy Scriptures. It is these holy men with want of " cou- an illiberal remark, that “ the disrage," with not “ acting up to their tinction is there laid down, with all full convictions of propriety," and the nicety of casuistry,” and is with their “ half measure,” (pp. 4,5). “such as no plain man would comWhat is the proportion between the prehend.” (p. 4.) It is laid down in faith, and courage, and consistency the very words of St. Jerome; but to conviction, of the puny men of there is a certain class of writers 'modern times, and of those cham- who never fail to seize every oppions for the truth who delivered us portunity of degrading the Offices from the bondage of Romish fetters? and Articles of the Established Wicklif, though standing alone, in Church ! the midst of popish darkness, would " What,” this writer asks, not yield to a popular prejudices," the holy Scriptures "appointed to when he set forth his English Bible, be read in churches'?” In answer “ rather than endanger its rejection” to this question, he “ appeals to the (p.5); but boldly declared that the English Prayer-book, to shew that apocryphal writings were " no books the apocryphal writings are inof belief!" Lonicerus, Luther, Cal- cluded under this description." vin, Cranmer, Latimer, would hear of (p. 9.) I wish that he had quoted no compromise on the canon of the part of the Prayer-book upon Scripture, for the sake of promoting which he grounds his appeal; which its circulation among the Romanists is made with no want of confidence, of their day; and the martyr was but with great deficiency of correctwilling to go to the stake, with the ness. 66 The Old and New TesBible suspended to his girdle, rather tament” are strictly those writings than even seem to countenance Ro- which were appointed to be read mish error, as to the supreme autho- in churches.” Other things are, rity of the Divine Testimony! But also, “ appointed to be read;” but many Protestants of the present it is a singular kind of logic which day, -aday oflight and knowledge- would conclude that, therefore, they a day of liberty and toleration—have are included under the name of Holy neither the faith, nor the courage, Scriptures. If the Sixth Article is even to tread in the path of these ve- not considered as sufficiently disnerable men; much less to advance tinct upon this point, what will the a step beyond them, (as bound to writer say to the following passage do by their superior privileges) in from the preface to the Book of their zeal for maintaining the inte- Common Prayer? “ Nothing is orgrity of the Divine Word.
dained to be read, but the very pure 2. The Book of Common Prayer word of God, the Holy Scriptures, OR is misrepresented, as sanctioning that which is agreeable to the same;" the indefinite use of the term holy where the compilers disavow the Scriptures, by which the expression idea of giving either a false name is extended the apocryphal or authority to the public lections writings. That the Thirty-nine Arti- simply maintaining that, whenever cles should be incorrectly referred any thing besides the holy Scripto, in this view, by Dissenters, is not tures was to be read, they had endeasurprising, since the example has voured to make a selection conformbeen set them by clergymen of the able to the truth of the Divine Word. Church of England during these 3. The Church of England is discussions. I scruple not to re- misrepresented, as maintaining “ a affirin, what I have said in my stiffness of prejudice " “ similar” to
- that of the “Continental Churches." “interpreters," and"commentaries,” (p. 7.) This is not the fact. The (as this reviewer finds it convenient Church of England circulates freely, to limit the application of Chilboth among her own members and lingworth's sentiment)-or of Faall other Christians, copies of the thers, Doctors, and Apocryphal Bible which altogether exclude the writings. If Chillingworth did not Apocrypha ; leaving it to the option mean this, his celebrated remark. of the purchaser: whether he will was absolute folly. The Reviewer have the Apocrypha annexed or however asserts, that he meant "the not. The great majority of the Bible as used in all the Episcopal continental churches is indisposed churches of England,” including to a similar liberality.
" the Apocrypha.” It would be 4. This writer has misrepresented absurd to imagine that he meant to Foreign Churches, in the assertion rest “ the religion of Protestants” that they “ are known to under- upon every thing which might be stand by THE SCRIPTURES, the Old .contained within the covers of that and New Testaments with the Apo- particular copy of the Bible” which crypha.” (p. 11.) With all their pre- was in his possession ;—for instance, judices in favour of these books, upon the dedication to King James, they are unjustly charged with such or upon the table of weights and a confusion of language. The Re- measures, or upon the Apocryphal formed Churches have no objection books (if indeed they were includto the omission of the Apocrypha : ed in that copy)! The “rock” the Lutheran Church (in every copy upon which “ only” he could “find of the Bible for the use of its mem- any rest for the sole of his feet,” bers) expressly declares, with the was the revealed word of the living great Reformer, that it does not God. By the distortion of his words, understand the Apocrypha as in the Eclectic Reviewer has held cluded in this term; for the title to up the sentiments of this great man these writings is, “ Apocrypha, to ridicule; and has treated his that is, books which are not to be memory with little more respect considered as equal to holy Scrip. than did the Puritan Cheynell, who ture.” Ignorance of this fact would contemptuously threw a copy of form a poor apology for the Re- the “ Religion of Protestants” into viewer; but he has not even that his grave at his interment. plea, since the fact was brought When it is further asked, “ Can before him in the book which he Protestantism stand only on the professes to criticise. (See State Protestant canon ? (p. 6.) I rement, p. 13.)
ply, Protestantism can stand only 5. Chillingworth, also, is both upon the inspired Word : the Promisunderstood and misrepresented' testant canon contains, exclusively, by this writer. “What,” he asks, the whole of that Word : I leave
was Chillingworth's Bible and the Reviewer either to complete Bible only?” “Did Chillingworth the syllogism, or to controvert its mean the Protestant Bible as op- propositions. posed to the Romish Bible ?” Any 6. It is with reluctance, that I deman of good sense will reply, that scend from the name of ChillingChillingworth meant by the Bible, worth, to notice the Reviewer's misTHE INSPIRED WORD, “ as op- representations of myself: nor should posed” to all human compositions, I do so, had he not adroitly convertwhether found on the reading desked my supposed errors and inconsistof the English Church, or among the encies into an argument against the members of the Romish or Greek whole Anti-Apocryphal body. communions; whether going under Upon what ground, then, does the name of traditions," " guides, this writer assert that I “have no objection to the Apocrypha being ture," or “conformity to a theoloannexed?” (p. 3.) I have simply ab- gical tenet,” (p. 9,) is clear from my stained from entering into that part proposal that we should unite with of the argument. I do not consider Roman Catholics in the distribuit indeed justifiable to withhold the tion of the New Testament, or of Word of God from those who “at those parts of the Old which we their own expense" choose to add mutually acknowledge.
But this, the Apocrypha. (Statement, p. 30.) it is added, “is to be made a conBut the Reviewer cannot “go fur- dition, not of uniting in the Bible ther than ” myself in deprecating Society, but of receiving the Bible." even its annexation * to the Scrip- “We refuse to put God's Word into tures ; and I should consider the the hands of Papists, &c.” (pp. 6, 7.) application of the funds of our So- How unfair ! are we, then, chargeciety to this purpose, as a sad mis- able with the perverseness of appropriation.
those who decline the pure gift Again, with regard to an inter- which we offer? The sentiment of mingled Apocrypha, distinctly ac- Lord Liverpool is marked by more knowledged to be such by being charitable and sensible views : “The accompanied by St. Jerome's pre- character peculiar to the Bible Sofaces and notesas a Protestant ciety is universality...if there are individual, I could " safely give it any who refuse to accept the Scripcirculation," (Statement, p. 3,) tures from us, there are none to rather than withhold the Word of whom we refuse to give them !” God from the Roman Catholics; (Speech at Kingston, 14 July 1825.) but as a member of the Bible So- The hypothetical case (p. 8.) of ciety, I should oppose the practice my being necessarily opposed to as contrary to its laws and prin- any Bible Society” which might ciples (Statement, p. 62.) Where have been formed in a period when is the inconsistency?
the Authorized Version contained a I am misrepresented in “ the false canon of Scripture, shews the price of co-operation
which I re- shifts to which this writer is driven; quire from those who associate in since no one would have recourse the Bible Society. (p. 9.) I might to such ingenious speculations who perhaps have better obviated cavils, had better arguments at hand. In had I stated the principle of our the supposed case, it is not difficult Society to require « an agreement to conceive of means by which the in the inspiration of those books circulation of the pure Scriptures which we unite in circulating.” That might be promoted, without any I meant this practical agreement, sacrifice of principle; but, whatever and not any abstract acknowledg- might have been theoretically “ the ment of the same “canon of Scrip- path of duty” in such a situation,
it is much more important to con* The Reviewer has grossly mistaken, sider practically what is the line to the meaning of that passage in Lightfoot, be pursued under existing circumwhere he speaks of the Apocrypha as
stances. “ chopped in by the Papists, between Matachi and Matthew.” Dr. L. does not allude
I am not to be alarmed at being to its intermediate typographical place, but placed in company with Mr. Norris to its intermediate authority as “Canonical and the Christian Remembrancer, Scripture," and the assumed intermediate time of its inspiration, between the period (p. 12); In the midst of all the unof Prophets and Evangelists. He could justifiable abuse heaped by them mean nothing else ; for, in point of fact, upon our excellent institution, there the Papists do not, literally, “interpose have been some hints deserving it “between Malachi and Matthew." But the apparent argument to be derived from
serious consideration. So far as the the mere sound of the words was too tempt- present controversy is concer
erned, I ing for the reviewer.
willingly place myself in company
with a still more notorious opponent And yet he himself marks with -Dr. Marsh. The fifth chapter reprobation, their “ positively exof his “ Comparative View of the ceptionable parts," “ spurious addiChurches of England and Rome” tions," "unscriptural doctrine,” “abcontains some admirable matter on surdity,” indelicacy," " errors, the Apocrypha and the canon of “ false example,” and “ false inScripture, from which the Eclectic struction.” (pp. 4, 5.) Reviewer may not only gain infor- 4. It is asserted that Chillingworth's mation, but may derive a sounder “ Bible and Bible only the Religion creed than he now professes ; and it of Protestants," meant that Bible develops principles which the Bible which contained “the Apocrypha," Society would do well to adopt. [as does the Bible of the Papists,] III. I shall bring this letter to a
56 with the mere difference of a seclose, by briefly pointing out a few parate arrangement.” (p. 6.) Here of the strange INCONSISTENCIES of is a denial that Chillingworth’s Bible the Eclectic Reviewer.
means the canonical Scriptures. 1. “ To the giving of the Apo- And yet, “were the attempt made crypha in any shape," the writer has to prove, from the authority of the “VERY DECIDED objections.” (p. 4.) Apocrypha, any popish tenet, the
And yet the whole bearing of his answer,” it is said, "s would be most argument is, to shew the futility of apposite : The canonical Scriptures our objections to "giving the Apo- only are the religion of Protestants." crypha” in the odious shape in which (p. 9.) Here is an admission that it pretends to be Holy Scripture. Chillingworth’s Bible means the ca
2. “ To promote the separation of nonical Scriptures ! the Apocrypha from the canonical 5. This writer's delicacy is offendScriptures,” does “not fall within ed at “ coarse epithets.” (p. 12.) the
scope and province of the Bible And yet, in the very same page, Society.” (p. 9.)
“ the Pope, and the Pope's master And yet, “the exclusion of the ...the Devil,” is an expression apApocrypha, in practice, from the plied to the whole genus of Roman English Bibles, was the only plan Pontiffs, with a taste which it would that would ensure unanimity,” and be difficult to describe without “ HAS always been an understood adopting a similar style. condition of the original covenant
6. It is allowed, with regard to entered into by the Society with both parties in this discussion, that the Christian public.'” (p. 10.) It every candid man must honour is added, “ we have the fullest con- the pure and upright motives by fidence in the Committee, that, to which they are respectively actuatthe utmost of their power, they will ed.” For “ though the Edinburgh discourage either the translation or Committee has acted with the apthe printing of the Apocryphal Books, pearance of hostility, those who whether in a separate or an inter- have taken the lead on either side, mingled form; that they will dis- in this discussion, have had equally countenance the circulation of them at heart the cause of truth, and the so far as practicable." (p. 15.) best interests of the Society.” (p. 2.)
3. This writer objects to “ the And yet it is declared, that the vulgar accumulation of coarse epi- 4th resolution of the Edinburgh thets” bestowed on the Apocrypha Committee, “ betrays any thing but by the Edinburgh Committee, who a cool head and an honest heart in had charged them with lies and the individual who framed it.” falsehood, low and vulgar pueri- “Some agitator has been at work." lities,' gross errors and immorali- " The temper and spirit which perties,' &c. (p. 12.)
vade the Statement" of that Com