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find himself confirmed in the latter faith-in the slough of Despair,-in company with the giant bearing that name,-is my fervent prayer and hope.

The text in question plainly asserts that, “he is before all things, and by (or in) him all things consist.” Now, I ask :

I How does Dr. B. know that this text foreshadows a truthful conception of the outline or framework of Creation ? Does he adopt the rationalistic or eclectic method of quoting Scripture, “when it is convenient,” to body forth the sentiments of his own mind? Or, does he take Paul's Epistle to the Colossians as divine authority? If the former, then he is a Christian rationalista strict follower and advocate of the Harmonial Philosophy. If the latter, then he is standing upon a foundation as impermanent as the changeful sand. Unless he is very careful and sound in the assumption and establishment of his premises, the youthful minds of his congregation, and the rising generation of investigators, will surely find it out. If he takes St. Paul for his authority, and believes that the text is true on that ground; then I must remind him of a fragment of church history, with which, as a scholar, he must assuredly be well acquainted.

When the pure Hebrew tongue ceased to be vernacular, and the Jews had returned from Babylon, there was immediately formed a sacerdotal organization, and a committee of Rabbis was appointed to collect and preserve all the known Hebrew manuscripts. This was done ; and the parchments placed in the Sacrarium. It was not, however, until many years after the return of the Jews from the Babylonish captivity and exilement, that most of the books of the Old Testament were heterogeneously bound together. This was, properly speaking, the “Babylonian Canon;" because it was originally made by the Chaldeanic Rabbis. But many years subsequent to this collection, there arose some considerable dissatisfaction and discussion among the younger Rabbis concerning the heterogeneousness of the first canon. Hence, by permission of the sacerdotal authorities, they rejected some books, arranged others in a different order, interpolated a few passages, and made another Testament. This is properly termed the “ Jerusalem Canon;" because it was made by the Jews of Palestine. During all this time,—owing to local oppressions and temporary emergencies,—books, by the Jews, containing multifarious speculations and national prophecies, multiplied very rapidly. Parties and preferences became numerous, and began to create dissatisfaction in regard to the last Canon which was formed ; and so, apparently to keep up with the demands of the times, another Old Testament was formed—the “ Alexandrian Canon”-in Egypt. All these compilations, be it remembered, were different. At this time, the book of DANIEL was generally regarded as the creation of an eccentric old Jew, who was talented, and a seceder from the reg- . ular priesthood. Hence, that interesting part of the present orthodox Old Testament, was not then universally received as containing reliable inspiration.

Now I feel moved to inquire : Does Dr. B. design to take the ground, that the Bible is the actual and immutable foundation of religion ? Or, that the New Testament is the only foundation and evidence of Christianity? Does he believe that, when we reject the paper and ink clothing of Christianity, we thereby lose the soul or principle ?

Christianity as it is in fact,—and as regarded by all intelligent rationalistic philosophers,-never exerted so much saving or reformatory power upon the human mind as it did in the first century, when there was no such a thing in existence as a New Testament. Christianity is one thing; the New Testament is quite another. In fact, the New Testament is a name which does not signify a book ; but a DISPENSATION. St. Paul did not write his speculations, concerning faith and redemption, to be read and adopted by all generations after him. His thoughts and epistles were developed by, and written for, special and particular occasions. His epistles--to the Romans, to the Thessalonians, to the Colossians, &c.—were especially adapted to the existing wants of those respective churches ; but not to the wants or requirements of the nineteenth century. Indeed, the writings of Paul were twice rejected as authority; and at last it was fully determined by the bench of Bishops, under the Emperor Constantine, that he should be placed in the gallery of the Old Theological Masters, as an inspired penman.

Here, then, is the important point to settle before proceeding further: viz.,--Does Dr. B- quote from St. Paul a text, axiomatically, as a motto, because it expresses the impressions of his own mind? If so; what necessity is there for creating a seeming difference between our Rationalism and his Supernaturalism ? For in such a case he is manifestly assuming the “Sovereignty of Reason,” as a power superior to the Bible revelation. This is the crime -the only crime—of the so-called infidels. Or, does he take the New Testament to be the “Word of God," and the text in Colossians as divine and immutable authority? If so; how will he explain the human formation of the Bible, and the unsatisfactory translation of the text ? My impression is, simply, to solicit the Lecturer's attention to the solution of these important considerations in the premises, in order that he may the more perfectly cure the skepticism and rationalism existing and developing in this world.


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When Dr. B- rolled up the curtain, which permitted us to view the Greek theater ; how artistically did he cause to be enacted the strange drama-almost the tragedy--of “ Speculation and Superstition.” He showed “the ingenu


ity” with which the abounding myths and Egyptian superstitions of still earlier times were caused to disappear by the Greek philosophers and sophists. Or, in other language, how the speculatists, having "some regard for the religious feelings of the people,” concluded to resolve the furies and myths into symbols and presiding deities. Then the Doctor showed his audience what the furies, thus symbolized and classified, did "above ground” and also under the earth. And the Greek sophists,--said the Lecturer,-finally succeeded in making God and Creation one and the same thing; reduced every thing, of a religious nature, to the common level; and ingeniously demonstrated all things to be moving in harmony with the “unchangeable laws of an endless . cycle.”

Now arises a question. Why did Dr. B-. allude to this piece of Greek history? Why did he dwell on the terms “speculatists, philosophers, and sophists,” and the reduction of all religious things to “ the unchangeable laws of an endless cycle ?”. Surely his text teaches precisely the same doctrine. “In him all things consist,” says the text; which is merely a synoptical or synthetical method of asserting, that “Nature is bathed in the Spirit of God—is penetrated and sustained by him; that all things exist and operate according to unchangeable law.” The talented Dr. subsequently considered this doctrine of modern rationalism; acknowledged “that Hume was right in affirming, that nothing could possibly occur contrary to established law and system;" and substantially confessed, also, a belief, in the Harmonial doctrine, that there can not be any real conflict between Nature and Supernaturalism, when the two are properly comprehended. Now why did he—with such a text, with such convictions, and with such noble concessions—roll up the Greek curtain, to show to the young minds of his congregation the “ingenuity of the Greek Philosophers” in sifting, rejecting, and

symbolizing the religion of that era; which, he said, they called “Superstition?” Was it to give them an idea of history? Was it to display his ability to trace out and comprehend the whole origin and scope of Rationalism ? Far from it. IIis only design was this: to draw a prejudicial parallelism between the philosophers of Greece and those who are to-day denominated philosophers; to make the people see that the exposition of superstition, by modern “speculatists,” is achieved by “ingenuity,” and not by Truth; to create an impression that that which is termed Harmonial Philosophy, is merely the revival of old ideas and long exploded speculations; to prejudice the people, in a word, against almost every thing of this century, which bears the general features of a rational reformation ; and yet, the Dr., it seems to me, is too highly endowed with a love of truth and benevolence to permit him to draw the parallelism too bold and rugged, or to enforce too earnestly its acceptation. The enlightened mind, however, can not but regret any such attempt on the Lecturer's part; because it shows conclusively, that his mind has not yet attained that moral growth which is capable of conducting a perfectly free and impartial investigation. Nevertheless, he is far superior to the popular species of clerical opposition to new truth; and declares himself “no enemy to science;" nor yet jealous of the truths uttered by Pantheists, or Humeites, or Physicalists, or by Phrenologists even, whose “gospel,” said the lecturer, “is Combe on the Constitution of Man.” These concessions give promise of something like a religious reformation. That I have apprehended and interpreted Dr. B—aright

-. in his parallelism, may be seen from the question he asked in that department of his discourse—viz. : “Is Christianity, as a system of faith and redemption, to meet with the same fate?” That is: is it to be resolved by modern speculatists,—as the Greek philosophers sifted and resolved the then prevailing

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