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become ") could not dispute. Many historical details He expressly endorses; He does not regard them as mythical details useful for illustration, but as authentic accounts of occurrences which really happened ; and He acknowledges the predictions of Scripture as, in some sort, a guide to His own career.

EXEGESIS.—Exegesis differs from exposition in being scholarly and critical in distinction from explanation which is popular, adapted to pulpit and class use. The validity and inspiration of Scripture cannot be settled

. by subjective tests alone, but must be learned by the diligent use of critical appliances. Hence comes the utility of careful and sound exegesis. According to Dr. Marvin R. Vincent, in an address delivered by him to the Union Theological Seminary, U.S., the characteristics of such exegesis are five in number. 1. It is necessary, because, owing to changes of language, local colouring, historical and geographical allusions, &c., the modern reader cannot, unassisted, understand the import and bearing of the various writings of which the Bible consists. 2. It is critical. If we are to have a Bible cleared from the débris of false interpretation and unwarranted assumption, we must apply to its text the canons of philology, history, and grammar. But for unfolding the Divine element the spiritual faculties must co-operate with the critical. Applied separately they are liable to gross error; combined discreetly and reverently, they elicit the truth. 3. It is progressive, as revelation itself is progressive, both in the Bible and in the later developments of modern civilization, science, missionary enterprise, &c., all of which are new revelations of the principles embodied in the earlier stages, which devout criticism displays. 4. It must be modest and patient, ready to acknowledge that there are things which it cannot explain. 5. It must be courageous and candid, not ashamed to correct preconceived opinions, but content to arrive at the author's meaning, whether it agree with the student's sentiments or not. Dr. Vincent asserts roundly that the Scriptures, creeds and confessions notwithstanding, are the only infallible rule of faith and practice, provided they are read with the inner illumination of the Holy Spirit, and interpreted according to the canons of a reverent exegesis.

THE FIFTY-FIRST PSALM: WHO WROTE IT ?- Most ordinary Christians would be very loth to dissociate this penitential utterance from the event in David's life to which it has been commonly applied. Its historical setting gives it a power and an explanation which a mere congregational hymn could never possess. Canons Cheyne and Driver unhesitatingly deny the Davidic authorship, asserting that it was written in the name of the Church by some lyric poet in Exilic times. This position is traversed by a writer in The Baptist Magazine, who with much vigour upholds the traditional view, and, entering into detail, shows that the expressions against which exception has been taken are quite consistent with this opinion. He adds that the opposite theory may be “ pleasing to the imagination, but does not commend itself either to the reason or the heart.”

PRODIGAL LOVE FOR THE PRODIGAL Son.—As an illustration of the value of verbal criticism in the exposition of Holy Scripture, we may notice a striking sermon just issued by Mr. Spurgeon, who deduces an exhibition of God's overflowing love toward the returning sinner from the use of the verb katepianoev, “ kissed him much," “ kissed him eagerly” (Luke xy. 20), a meaning possessed by the compound verb.

GENESIS AND THE DOCUMENTARY HYPOTHESIS. Mr. J. S. Bryan reviews Dr. Murphy's “ Commentary on Genesis” in the American Lutheran Quarterly Review. The commentator adopts the documentary hypothesis, holding that Moses made use of some eleven authorities in the composition or compilation of the Book. Mr. Bryan deems the evidence for this hypothesis weak and unconvincing, supporting his contention by the opinion of Lange and his annotator, who opine that the exegetical distinction in the Divine name has been carried to an unwarranted extent, and made to bear inferences which it is unable reasonably to support. The Mosaic authorship of Genesis is confirmed by the testimony of the whole Jewish world, including Christ and the Apostles, and continued to modern times. The opposite hypothesis is open to the following objections: 1. Moses makes no allusion to any documents consulted by him. 2. The distinction in the Divine names may be explained on the ground that the writer used the appellations accordingly as he wished to convey the notion of the universal God or the covenant God. 3. Logical, grammatical, and historical considerations prove the unity and integrity of Genesis. 4. The results of the disintegrating view, if applied similarly to the rest of the Old Testament, would reduce the whole to a jumble of confused fragments, which no two critics would arrange in the same manner.

The Lost TRIBES OF ISRAEL.—The craze for discovering what are called “The Lost Tribes of Israel” has evoked a literature of immense extent, and ranging from puerile theories to recondite research. An article in the American Lutheran Quarterly Review by Mr. J. M. Boland takes a different view from that usually found in writings on this favourite subject. This theorizer considers that Judah alone was guilty of crucifying the Christ, and is now suffering its punishment; and that Israel, ten-tribed, is somewhere enjoying the blessings promised to her in prophecy. This “somewhere” signifies the various localities where the Anglo-Saxon race--the lineal descendants of Isaac-are found. These tribes are supposed to have migrated from Assyria to Central and Northern Europe, changed language, customs, physical peculiarities, and become in process of time Teutons. The theory is confirmed by a comparison of the prophetic blessings of Jacob and Moses with the leading characteristics of the eight chief nations of Europe. The hypothesis above stated has been started by two writers in America, pursuing their investigations independently, and arriving substantially at the same conclusion. The matter is curious. Has it a leg to stand upon ? and will it bear impartial criticism ?

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St. John's GOSPEL.—There are two articles in late numbers of the American Sunday School Times which treat of questions connected with the Fourth Gospel. The first is by Dr. G. P. Fisher, and asks the question, “ Does it profess to be by St. John ?” “There can be no doubt,” he replies, " that the book itself implies that it was written by St. John, though the author, from modesty, withholds his name, and expresses his individuality only by periphrasis. No pseudepigraphic writer ever took such elaborate means to create a false impression of authorship. If the writer did this, he devised an unworthy trick, which would be utterly alien from the spirit which he exhibits throughout the work. If it was composed by John's disciples after their master's death, why did they use a circumlocution in speaking of him, instead of giving his name openly, without disguise ?The second article deals with this Gospel as a book for its time.” Professor Porter points out that St. John adapts his message to his audience. The first preachers of the Gospel convinced their hearers that Jesus was the Messiah-St. Paul delivered Christianity from legalism; St. John satisfied the desire of Hellenism for a revelation of God by presenting Jesus as the Word of God. He announces, “ There in that truly human life is the Logos for which you have been searching far off”; not a mere ideal, but a human Christ, whom he had seen and known. Thus, John's mission was to teach a real faith in a living person, in whom believers could see and know God, through whom “the Divine light and life are perfectly imparted, and the spirit's needs perfectly satisfied.”

THE JOHANNEAN CONTROVERSY. By Professor W. SANDAY, D.D. (The Expositor).—The point now arrived at is the relation of the Fourth Gospel to the Synoptics. Measured by this standard, six grounds of discrepancy are maintained : (1) That Christ's ministry is laid in Judæa; (2) that it lasted two and a half years; (3) that the crucifixion is assigned to Nisan 14th instead of 15th ; (4) that the hours of the day are differently reckoned ; (5) that the history is wanting in progression, especially on the point of our Lord's declaration of Messiahship; (6) at the same time there is a general heightening of His claims. Objections one and two are shown to be groundless, as there is abundant reason to believe that our Lord very frequently sojourned in Judæa, the accounts of the Synoptists being incomplete, and their chronology entirely defective. As regards the third plea, Professor Sanday, while owning that a strong case can be made out for either theory, is now inclined to hold that the Synoptics’ supper is the Paschal meal; that the phrase "to eat the Passover" may, as Edersheim affirms, be applied not merely to the Paschal lamb, but also to all the sacrifices of this feast, especially to the Chagigah, or peace-offering brought on Nisan 15th (John xviii. 28), and tapar sevi toû táo xa may mean “Friday in Paschal week” quite as well as the “ day of preparation for the Passover.” The discrepancy in the reckoning of time must await further elucidation, none of the solutions offered being quite satisfactory. As to the “deep-seated difference respecting

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the whole course of the ministry of Christ," of which Schürer (Vortrag 63-65) has made a strong point, Dr. Sanday shows (1) that it is not an accurate representation of the facts, as the first Apostles were very far from believing all that Messiahship implied, and Christ's own reserve is as marked in St. John as in the Synoptics; and (2) allowance must be made for the tendency to foreshorten which characterizes the action of memory exercised over a long interval. This may account for some antedating in the narrative of the Fourth Gospel, the writer seeing facts in the light of the ideas that possessed him. And doubtless he “ gives us a portrait of Christ which is all divinity” -the outcome of half a lifetime's meditation upon what he had seen and heard, and the stupendous results which had been wrought in the spirit and name of Jesus. But the Synoptists “ have really the same substratum, the same underlying ideas, as the Fourth Gospel. They are not one whit less Christo-centric,” and if they do not expressly state the pre-existence of the Logos, yet St. Peter and St. Paul in their Epistles imply the doctrine or take it for granted, a fact which “brings us back very near to the foundationhead of all Christian doctrine."

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THE MIRACLES OF CHRIST. By the Very Rev. G. A. CHADWICK, D.D., Dean of Armagh (The Erpositor).--The attempt to eliminate the supernatural from Christianity while retaining its ethical forces, to accept Christ and His marvellous teaching, and yet to reject His miraculous actions, is shown to be preposterous and futile. The supernatural is not a mythical adjunct, but the very essence of the life and history of Jesus. supernatural Person explains the supernatural events. The true key to every act is the personality of the actor. . . . . To the supernatural Christ

... the miracles are natural; they are simply good works which He shows..... All this" (Christ's character, teaching, actions, and moral influence), “to the unbeliever in spiritual realities, is a physical product of natural forces. But then the evolution of Jesus by the religious influences of the first century is a far greater marvel than the turning of water into wine. And he cannot get rid of the supernatural by rejecting some five-and-thirty incidents which challenge him at intervals along the story." As to miracles contradicting what scientists call the law of the conservation of force, Dr. Chadwick answers, first, that this supposed law is only a generalization from observation of similar cases, and it is simply begging the question to assume that no new conditions are at work which might modify this routine; and secondly, this law applies only to physical forces, and not to thought, conviction, volition. In Christ's miracles, even in the raising of the dead, there was no creation of new forces, but a reassembling or rearranging of forces already existing by a transcendent will-working from within the universe. Hence come the conclusions: (1) that the miracles are not contra-natural, but certain acts which transcend the effects of natural forces wielded by merely human energies; (2) they are signs of ethical importance as implying and revealing a supernatural Personage; and (3) they are only known to be real

when conformable to the life and teaching of Christ, the natural works of a great Worker.

AND

JESUS CHRIST THE GREAT SUBJECT OF PROPHECY.—Commenting on the Eunuch's question in Acts viii. 34, Dean Payne Smith, in the The Wesleyan Methodist Magazine, urges that the purpose of prophecy is not to be found in denunciations of sin, in moral lessons, or in struggles after holiness, but in its testimony to Jesus. To prepare for Christ's advent, to bear witness to His divinity and His work—this was the real scope and object of the prophets. But this portion of the Testament was a closed book to the saints of the Jewish Church till Christ broke the seals (Rev. v.) and “opened the book by fulfilling it." The Dean supports his position by discussing Isa. lii. and the following chapters, and showing their Messianic bearing. There is nothing new in the treatment, but the idea is put reasonably and forcibly, and must have weight with an unprejudiced reader, if such is to be found. THE METHODOLOGY OF THE HIGHER CRITICISM

ITS ALLIES DEMONSTRABLY UNSCIENTIFIC.-Dr. Watts bases his article in The Homiletic Review on the position that the Higher Criticism, and indeed all criticism that denies the plenary, verbal inspiration of Scripture, violate the Baconian laws relating to à priori arguments and induction. The Higher Criticism, he says, assumes à priori that miracle in any shape is impossible. Dr. Watts' generalization is as baseless as the error against which he contends. Admitted that individuals among the critics are unbelievers in the supernatural, and enemies to the idea of a Divine revelation, it must not be inferred that this is true of all critics, that all are animated by an ambition for destruction and a love of finding flaws, that all are atheistical or irreverent. It would be invidious to name individuals, but we could point to many, who are devout believers, whose only desire is to present the Word of God free from accretions, misinterpretations, and unwarranted applications. These do not consider it an axiom that revelation is incredible. Therefore Dr. Watts' assumption fails in this particular. At the same time, as he persists, there are many errors short of this displayed in the present day treatment of Scripture, e.g., that there were no foreseen conjunctures that furnished the opportunity of manifesting to the rational creature the presence of the Creator; or that the economy of grace is based upon natural law, to which principle the Incarnation of the Son of God gives the denial. Another indictment against the Higher Criticism is, that it signally fails in the inductive process, that its conclusions are not founded on a full examination of all the phenomena and a due regard to proportion. Explicit statements in the Bible with respect to inspiration and infallibility are minimized or set aside, while apparent discrepancies or moral difficulties are paraded and held up to the disparagement of the sacred text. This, it is. argued, is not scientific, and, if substantiated, is a valid objection. A third postulate, against which the writer protests, is that the intervention of the Holy Spirit which is demanded by the theory of verbal inspiration transforms.

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