صور الصفحة
النشر الإلكتروني

1828,] REVIEW.-Sermons by Revs. T. Dale and J. W. Stewart.

4 Sermon preached in the Parish Church of St. Bride, Fleet Street, on Sunday, February 17, 1828, before the Rt. Hon. the Lord Mayor, the Sheriffs, &c. by the Rev. Tho. Dale, M.A. of Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, for the benefit of the Printers' Pension Society. 8vo. pp. 29.

THE art of Printing is the wood of which the lever of Archimedes is made; and our able Author has drawn a very excellent representation of the value of a materiel, which, placed upon the fulcrum of science, and moved by competent authors, has strength sufficient to lift the world. But the particular felicity for which Mr. Dale's disquisition is remarkable, is the coincidence of the invention with the Reformation in religion, and its great instrumentality in promoting the latter. If mighty has been the benefit of the art, in this and in other matters too numerous for specification, indeed obvious, "it has," says our author, "very justly great claims on the gratitude of society towards those who profess the art; and we cannot do his discourse greater justice than by extracting his eloquent appeal in their behalf.

"You who are occupied in literary or scientific pursuits, and who either receive or communicate information through the medium of the Press;-you, who find a delightful relaxation from severer pursuits in that elegant and polite literature, of which our own age, to its honour be it spoken, furnishes an abundant supply, which is neither calculated to enervate the mind nor corrupt the heart;-you, who take a personal and lively interest in passing events, and who are provided with the record of all public occurrences, with a correctness, a fidelity, a dispatch, beyond all precedent or parallel of former times;-you certainly will not deny me the right of appealing to you. But I have another ground of appeal. It is to you, parents, who are indebted to the press for facilities in the education of your children, of which your own parents had no conception; who can by this means, while yourselves are engaged in other occupations, which engross all your attention, "furnish them with the means of amusing their leisure, exciting their interest, gratifying their curiosity, cultivating their minds, and confirming their principles;-of learning, either by direct or indirect channels of instruction, the duties which they owe first to their God, then to their country, their neighbours and yourselves."-p. 25.

Then, as to the objects, Mr. Dale

says"Look at the man, respectable from his


conduct, and possessing superior information from the very nature of his occupation, now from inability to continue it, left destitute in the evening of his days;-I can not only Look at the widow of such a man, left indigent, desolate, and wholly unable, without the friendly assistance of this Society, to educate her children in the decent station



of their father;'--but I may say, Look at the man who has a peculiar claim upon your commiseration and benevolence; who has laboured for your amusement, gratification, or instruction; who has perhaps brought a premature decay by exerting himself above his strength for your benefit, or the benefit of those in whom you are most nearly interested. Be liberal therefore in proportion to the advantage which you have received." -pp. 27, 28.

Sermons principally designed to strengthen the Faith, and increase the Devotedness of Christians in the present remarkable Æra. By the Rev. James Waldane Stewart, M.A. Minister of Percy Chapel, St. Pancras.. 8vo. pp. 455.

IN our criticisms upon religious subjects, it is our rule never to lose sight of history; and of two points we are informed by that excellent standard,-one, that Morality cannot be Religion, no more than half a body can, make a whole man, and the other, that the substitution of austerity for moral worth, forms only ascetics, and produces a reaction of profligacy. We have been led into these remarks, because we declare it to be shamefully uncharitable that a family should be branded as unchristian for having either balls or dinner-parties. Mr. Stewart says


"If there be any time in which we unbend it is at Christmas or at Easter. And what, my friends, are the pleasures of men in general? If a master wishes to give his servants pleasure, he allows them to go to the theatre with their friends; or if he would take pleasure himself, the harp and the viol and the tabret and the pipe,' are brought into his house, and the wine is in his feasts. This we know to be the customary way with nominal Christians. But does a true Christian take pleasure in these things? Does his heart grow light, his spirits rise, and his countenance brighten in scenes like these? Oh no! here old things are passed away, behold all things are become new.' He has no pleasure in them."-pp. 89, 90.

If it be true that men do not like to be miserable, then these ascetic notions will make ten sinners for one saint.


By what authority does any divine assert that it was the intention of Christ to turn the world into a jail, and make misery the summum bonum of human duty.

Mr. Stewart says

REVIEW.-Pusey on the Theology of Germany.

[blocks in formation]

But the truth is, these sermons are flamingly evangelical, and by so saying we shall increase the sale of them. The followers of that system professedly make no distinction between sense and nonsense; so as the matter of their discourses is, in their own terms," warm and savoury," that is sufficient. But we like a middle course, which does not misinterpret Christianity, or make of it mere jargon and mysticism.


We feel no wish to arraign the talent or good intentions of the writer, to both of which we give credit, but we vehemently protest against a dinner given at a christening being deemed the profanation of the sacrament of Baptism," (as it is in p. 80); and such fantastical ideas as that there is a new creation in Christians, by which, instead of continuing to swim in the water, they jump out of it, and become birds or flying fish.-See p. 88.

An Historical Inquiry into the probable Causes of the Rationalist Character, lately predominant in the Theology of Germany. By E. B. Pusey, M. A. Fellow of Oriel College, Oxford. 8vo. pp. 186.


King of the day. For our parts, to speak fearlessly and independently, and in comparison with our own philosophers, those of Germany are not, in our judgment, meu of ideas, but mere systemmongers,-technicists of humble common-place and truisms. Mr. Rose having formed rather too indiscriminate a conclusion concerning the theology of Germany, Mr. Pusey has made a very elaborate research, from which it appears that there are actually some real Christians among them, and more likely to be so in rapid progression. Our own opinion of all follies is that of Dean Swift, concerning bastings and jerkings ;

IT appears, as far as we can understand the jargon and scholasticism of German philosophy, that Christianity has (to use a legal phrase) been only made bail or security for such a set of the popular philosophical notions of the day, or of the preacher himself, as he might think proper to advocate. Thus Christianity was not his Majesty himself, but his Majesty's servant, echoing the commands of Mr. Kant, or whoever was the philosophic

[blocks in formation]

"It is probably the unavoidable consequence of polemics, that the question in dispute assumes an undue importance, that the mode of stating the truth, or some collateral points connected with it, more or less displace in the minds of the disputants the practical and religious purport of the

doctrines themselves, and their relation to the Christian system; though in this relation alone it can exert an efficacious, vital,

and consistent influence. Every thing else is forgotten in the determination of the immediate controversy; the conviction of the intellect becomes in itself the end; the heart is forgotten in the exclusive employment of the understanding." P. 25.

This is true; and hence it ensues that the mere creation of violent factions is the usual result of religious controversy. But, says Goldsmith, if a bustle be not made about religion, it soon becomes a dead letter.

The Commission and consequent Duties of the Clergy; in a Series of Discourses preached before the University of Cambridge. By Hugh James Rose, B. D. of Trinity College, one of the select Preachers of that Year. 8vo. pp. 179.

THE versatility of the English upon religious matters is a jest among foreigners. According to our experience


REVIEW.-Rose on the

the longest life of one fashion in religion does not exceed a generation. About thirty years ago, the popular sermonist was Blair, the episcopally recommended study was Sherlock, and the clergy were instructed to make works the leading topic. This produced a quiescent state of things, which philosophers and statesmen and historians considered a great public advantage, because faction and insubordination are the sole results of religious fermentation, nor has it ever been of use, except in the overthrow of obsolete superstitions. Wesley and Whitfield saw in this quietude mischief to the souls of men, and held virtually that a saving faith was not a question of reason or good conduct, but of feelings and enthusiasm. The people must be incited, as they are at elections, and what Wilkes and Liberty was in political, Wesley and Christianity was to be in the religious world. The uneducated state of the lower English rendered them susceptible of doctrines and notions which the wellinformed orders utterly rejected. Bp. Warburton exposed these doctrines, and Bishop Lavington pronounced them only renovations of Popery in another form. Other eminent divines considered them relics of the ancient puritanism; and all parties agreed that they had been reduced to experiment in the time of Charles the First, and had produced very bad consequences, and we think always will do so, as to making men wiser or better, because in all violent contentions upon religious topics, the subject is overwhelmed by human passions, the inevitable result of all polemics. Proselytism, not public good, becomes the object; and society, through discord, is split into factions. So far the unerring testimony of history; for certain it is, to repeat a hacknied philosophical adage, that "fanaticism has ever professed to produce the golden age, i. e. a race of men without vice or misery, and has always failed in the attempt.'

To resume, Christ was apparently forgotten in mere ethical sermons, and as (says Bishop Tomline)* "neither works nor faith can justify (i. e. absolve us) it can only be the atonement." The omission was culpable; and advantage having been taken of it to sanction enthusiasm, certain of the

* On the Articles, ii. 258, 259.

Duties of the Clergy.


regular clergy adopted, to a very considerable extent, upon the fas ab hoste principle, the system of those enthusiasts, and formed a party in the Church which has been denominated evangelical. The philosopher and the statesman, of course, will judge of that system by its operation, as to the improvement of character and the diminution of crime; for the augmentation of furious religionists, without such results is a civil and political evil. Where the system is warmly patronized, no moral change whatever has been effected. After twenty years' acquaintance with the system, that we may not be said to decide upon our partial experience, we refer to our review of the Bishop of Salisbury's Charge, from which it will appear that the system, so far from having an improving effect in morals, has only augmented the number of those religionists, who, in particular, reject ethics as having any vital connection with Christianity, viz. Solifidians, Calvinists, and Autinomians.

From the first, the Evangelical system was rejected by dignitaries and the superior clergy, who, however, willingly supported two proposed improvements, neither of which originated with the Enthusiasts, viz. Sunday and National Schools. The success in diminution of crime has been unequivocal, as appears from the Reports of the Prison Committee of the Warwick County Asylum, and various other publications, already noticed in the columns of our Review.

It is but just to notice that the Evangelical Clergy have also warmly supported these ameliorating institutions; and it is fortunate that they have done so, for fanaticisin renders the poor indifferent to education. With them preaching is every thing, but prayer is the noblest part of God's worship. "By preaching," says Bishop Bull, "we are taught how to worship God, but prayer is itself God's worship."

The common people think that to preach without book is an exhibition of superior talent. It is far otherwise. There are many very silly and ignorant persons who can show off in this way, without any trouble or any thought; whereas there are many of the most learned and amiable divines, who neither possess nor affect this gift of garrulity, which adds nothing to the glory of God, but produces egotism,


poor conceit, exaltation of the faculties of man in the presence of God, desultory arguments and idle digressions.

These are the results of making religion an affair of feeling; "for," says the excellent disquisition which we have just quoted, "were religion a mere matter of temporary feeling, I would have all its offices goading and enthusiastic; novelty and endless variety should be enlisted into the service, and all its ministers should be men of eccentric imaginations rather than of deep learning and sober judg


We have adverted to this subject of "sectarianizing the Church," because there is nothing cautionary in the sermons before us, although Mr. Rose tells us (p. 151) that instances have occurred very recently of Deacons, when attending a Bishop for examination previous to their ordination as Priests, exhorting in the inn near his residence, and defending their conduct for so doing; notwithstanding it was a mistake of the extent of their ministerial commission, and a breach of church discipline.

Mr. Rose in his Discourses warmly recommends the study of theology, and denounces the wickedness of making the ecclesiastical profession a sinecure. This is as it should be; active philanthropy, excellent example, promotion of moral and religious education, exhortation to virtue and piety, discouragement of vice; all these may be safely practised; but ZEAL, however safe in the points mentioned, must be tempered with great discretion in all others; for a zealot without such a bridle is merely a firebrand; he fills his parish with factions, and makes of the ignorant commentators on the Bible, who will advance all kinds of extravagant opinions, and expect him to support them; in the end, instead of finding that he has formed a congregation of "people who walk humbly with their God," he has only filled it (as the Bishop of Salisbury shews) with Solifidians, Calvinists, Antinomians, &c. &c. and done more mischief, "religious feuds being always implacable," than a contested election, because he has roused all sorts of angry passions, and bad feelings. Amidst all this quarrelling, what becomes of the practical influence of Christianity, and what is the cause? The Poor, who ought to be won over by philanthropy,


where interest keeps them in due subjection, are elevated into a critical playhouse audience by electioneering concitation? As to the rich, they are irritated by attacks upon their pleasures, through confounding morality with austerity. Such are or have been the consequences of indiscreet zeal in half the country towns and populous villages of this kingdom, and instead of Religion we find Party.

Mr. Rose's view of the subject is limited; for being Sermons before the University of Cambridge, and addressed to "candidates for holy orders," it was prudent to treat the matter in a manner not liable to exceptions. We need not say that the Sermons are very excellent.

REVIEW.-Clissold on National Piety.

The ancient and Scriptural Doctrine, that National Piety is the Source of National Prosperity, maintained in allusion to the late Distress, and to the diffusion of Christian Knowledge in Ireland. Enlarged from one Sermon preached at the Trinity Church, Cheltenham, Aug. 12, 1827. By the Rev. Stephen Clissold, M.A. 8vo. pp. 50.

IF Mr. Clissold be willing to allow that the diffusion of knowledge and education, and by consequence improved reason, has an intimate connection with national prosperity as well as piety, we are willing to coincide with him; but we are not to be convinced of any ameliorating influence being attached to mere blind ignorant devotion; and we see its bad influence in Ireland, where the people oppose religious reformation for no other cause but because they are sin


and have not education and knowledge to counteract prejudices. We speak thus, not in depreciation of Mr. Clissold's argument, which in certain views is unquestionable, but because we have a prepossession that education must be the corner-stone of all projected improvement.-Concerning those who propose to effect this by "sectarianizing the Church," let us hear Mr. Clissold's own opinions.

"It is a truth never to be lost sight of, that sectarianism does not necessarily lead to any sound reformation, either of manners or of doctrines. It is comparatively easy to excite men to espouse the cause of a party, by tampering with their faith; but the spirit of party, which so frequently outrages truth and decency, is not the spirit of Christianity; it is more commonly the effect of passion and persuasion than of con

REVIEW.-Dr. Philip on Indigestion.


viction, so that the doctrines which to-day are maintained with vehemence, may to-morrow be laid aside and abandoned with indifference. Such converts are drifted away by every wind of doctrine, and disappear like the clouds which hovered over the new world, and were mistaken by Columbus for firm land. Neither is a sectarian spirit, which is the very leaven of religious bigotry, an appropriate qualification for those who offer to lead the temper and inclination of others to reflection, and from reflection to a conviction, heightened into divine authority." P. 24.

On the more protracted Cases of Indigestion.
By A. P. W. Philip, M.D. F.R.S. &c.
pp. 86.

DR. PHILIP is of opinion that irritation of the digestive organs produces in its progress inflammatory tendency, and at length organic disease, and consequently that indigestion may be divided into three corresponding stages. He conceives that the beginning of each stage may be detected by pressure; for example, of the second or inflammatory, by tenderness in the region of the pylorus (pit of the stomach) and duodenum (first intestine). He observes that the latter, especially in these cases, becomes loaded, languid, and distended, and the suffering which ensues is well described. The accumulation being removed, quickly forms again, both the stomach, the intestine, and liver, being weakened. In the examination of these parts,

"The patient will almost always tell you that the left side feels more free than the right, and that there is something in the latter which gives him a sense of obstruction. The right side feels fuller and firmer. -It is natural to suppose that as the liver lies on the right side, these differences may be ascribed to it."-pp. 9, 10.

Hence it is that all affections of the stomach and bowels, by unscientific practisers, are generalized into liver diseases. Fallibility of this kind, and empirical treatment, arise principally from all the phenomena of cases, present and retrospective, not being taken into consideration, and from the mind being prejudiced by fashion and the doctrines of ignorant and interested writers.

When tenderness extends to the left side across the region of the stoniach, such cases are particularly obstinate, and Dr. Philip says,

GENT. MAG. October, 1828.


"Mercurials have often appeared to me nearly useless, and if carried beyond the mildest doses, always prejudicial." pp. 16, 17.

This remark is very important. Indeed to what are broken constitutions and permanent disorders of the digestive organs more often owing, than to the abuse of mercury?

Dr. Philip considers indigestion analogous to simple nervous fever, and regulates his treatment according to the stages, and the pulse, whether soft or tight. Minute alteratives and the least stimulating tonics, with salines, when the pulse is tight, and the whole frame heated and feverish, weakened or strengthened, according as these symptoms are increased and diminished, are the chief points in his plan; having one leading principle, to set free the organs of secretion without debilitating or over-stimulating them.

Nitre and tartar emetic for feverish symptoms with a tight pulse; colchicum where there are rheumatic pains; ammonia when there is great susceptibility of cold, without a tight pulse; all in minute doses, are judiciously recommended.

After relating accurately in what manner this disease extends to the lower intestines (pp. 21, 22), he says that indigestion consists in the first instance of a deranged state of the stomach alone, and next spreads to the organs nearest to it; and, lastly, from the continued irritation of the nervous system, becomes a disease of the whole system. P. 40.

More than half the cases we meet with are combinations of diseases, rather than simple diseases. P. 86.

Dr. Philip complains of being misunderstood by other writers, at which we do not wonder. He writes without sufficient perspicuity and lucid order, and we regret to see such verbiage and false theory as "morbid constriction of the vital parts," and "debilitated states of the organs of waste and supply," phrases of the late Dr. Pemberton. To collect a sufficient number of facts, and annex in simple and consecutive propositions and reasoning, in the form of query, and in the most perspicuous language, such inferences as are warranted by symptoms accurately described, is the only sound or valuable mode of writing medical treatises. Though indigestion, diet, &c. are the themes of the day, little or no

« السابقةمتابعة »