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the barren secrets of that which is about to perish. Nevertheless it often happens, that its language, when listened to with attention, permits us to see a science which it will not teach, but which it cannot be igno. rant of, since there is in it a profound abyss. Not only will it tell us nothing false, even in passing, but it often surprises us with words which betray the voice of the Creator of the world. Often you remark in them a wisdom, a prudence, an exactitude, of which the ages of antiquity could not form an idea, and which the discoveries alone of the telescope, and of the science of the moderns have been able to appreciate ; so that its language carries, by these traits, the evident characteristics of the most entire inspiration. The discreet and unusual choice of its expres. sions, the nature of certain details, whose perfect propriety and divine adaptedness to the facts were only revealed three thousand years later, the reserve of the language, sometimes its boldness and its strangeness, considering the time when it was written,-all these signs make you know the Savant par excellence, the Ancient of Days, who addresses himself to his children without doubt, but who speaks as the Father of a family, and who well knows his house. pp. 166—173.
Want of space forbids our extracting the succeeding pages, in which the author illustrates the position which he assumes in the last paragraph which we have quoted, and shows how wonderfully the representations of the sacred writers agree with the discoveries of science, in regard to the shape of the globe, its rotundity, its resting on nothing; the epoch and the order of the several stages of the unravelling of the primitive chaos; the heaven, as being an expanse and not a firmament, or otepéwud; the light, as being independent of the sun; the creation of plants; the atmosphere, as having weight; the nature of the clouds ; the mountains; the exterior of the globe, as being a crust or shell; the interior, as composed of fire ;* the surface of the earth, as emerging or rising out of the waters; the deluge, as having been caused by the internal heat, and its action on the crust of the earth; the creation of birds and fishes, as having the same origin, and similar characteristics ;t the arresting of the moon as well as the sun, by miracle; the primitive unity of the language of mankind; the dimensions of the ark of Noah; the vast number of the stars, and their subjection to laws in their position and movements; the division of the heavens; and finally, the grandeur and immensity of creation. On all these subjects, the discoveries of
* Job 28: 5. Literally: Beneath, it is turned up, and as it were, of fire."
+ See the Memoirs of Dr. J. L. Prevost, of Geneva.
modern science most remarkably confirm, as Professor Gaussen justly states and fully proves, the gleamings of light which the Scriptures, rightly translated, in no obscure manner, shed upon them.
In the 7th and last section of this chapter, the Professor considers and demolishes the objections against the plenary inspiration of the Scriptures, which have been founded upon what are called the Avowals of St. Paul. He shows conclusively that these avowals relate only to the cases in which the apostle had no express command from the Lord to give, thus leaving them among the things indifferent, and which might be done or not; but in which the Apostle sometimes ventures to give his advice. This militates in no way, however, against the true doctrine of the Inspiration of the Scriptures.
The third chapter, which is a long one, is devoted to the consideration of what the author terms Evasions of the true doctrine. These evasions are arranged under three heads. The first may be expressed thus: Does the Inspiration of the sacred Scriptures concern only the thoughts, or does it extend also to the words of the writers ?
The second: Ought the Historical Books of the Scriptures to be excepted from this plenary Inspiration?
The third: Does the apparent insignificance of certain details in the Bible authorize their exclusion from this Inspiration ?
These topics the Professor discusses in a very satisfactory manner, and maintains the plenary inspiration of the sacred volume throughout, in its words as well as in its ideas; in its minutest and apparently most trivial details, as well as in its most solemn and obviously important narratives. We give but one extract: it is from the portion of this chapter in which he discusses the second of the above stated topics.
Where will you find, among all the uninspired narrators, a man who has written any thing as St. Luke has written the Acts of the Apostles ? Who has known how to recount in thirty pages the history of thirty of the most beautiful years of Christianity, from the ascension of the Son of Man to heaven, to the imprisonment of St. Paul in the capital of the Roman world ? Incomparable History! See at once how short and how great it is! What do we not find in it? Discourses addressed to the Jews and to the Greeks,—pronounced before the tribunals, before the Areopagus and before the Sanhedrim, in the public places, and before a proconsul, in the synagogues and before kings; admirable de. scriptions of the primitive Church; miraculous and dramatic scenes in its bosom ; interventions of angels to deliver, to warn, or to punish; controversies and divisions in the assemblies of Christians; new institutions in the Church; the history of a first council and its synodic epis. tle ; commentaries on the Scriptures ; recitals of heresies ; solemn and terrible judgments of God; appearances of the Lord in the way, in the temple, in the prison ; detailed conversions and such as were often miraculous, and singularly various,--that of Eneas, that of the eunuch, that of Cornelius the centurion, that of the Roman jailer, that of the proconsul, that of Lydia, that of Apollos, that of many people at Jerusalem ;—not to speak of those which were only commenced, such as the emotions of king Agrippa, the agitation of Felix, the professions of Simon of Samaria, the anguish of Pilate's wife, and the benevolence of the captain Julius ;-missionary journeys; lasting divisions among Christians of different classes, respecting things external ; mutual prejudices; different solutions of cases of conscience ; disputes between brethren and even between apostles; the developments, the explanations and the triumphs of the spirit of charity ; communications from one military officer to another, from proconsul to proconsul; revelations made to the churches respecting the calling of the Gentiles ; collections made by the poor of one church for the benefit of another; prophecies ; national scenes ; punishments either perpetrated or designed ; sum. mons before Jewish tribunals or Roman municipal authorities, before governors and kings; Christian assemblies from house to house,—their emotions, their prayers, their charity, their doubts and fears; a persecuting king struck by an angel and eaten of worms, at the moment, when, to please the populace, he had accomplished the death of one apostle and had designed that of another; persecutions under all forms, by the synagogues, by the princes, by the Jews, and by popular tumults; deliverances of the men of God, one while by a child, another wbile by an angel, one while by a Roman tribune, or a captain of a ship, by pagan magistrates, or by idolatrous soldiers ; tempests, shipwrecks, with details which, by their nautical exactness (as we have seen),charm even the mariners of our days ;-and all this in thirty pages, or twentyeight little chapters! Admirable brevity! Was there not need of the Holy Spirit of God for this conciseness, for this selection of details, for this pious, varied, brief, richly significant manner which employs so few words, and teaches so inany things? Fulness, conciseness, clearness, simplicity, elevation, practical richness,--such is the ecclesiastical history which the people of God needed. This is true ; but it is not thus that men narrate events.
Could you find on the earth a man that is capable of relating the assassination of his mother with the manifest calmness, the propriety, the sobriety, the coolness of the four-fold narrative of the Evangelists, recounting the death of Jesus ; of that Jesus whom they loved more than one loves his mother, more than one loves his life? That Jesus whom they adored; whom they had seen prostrate in Gethsemane, and afterwards betrayed, abandoned, dragged along, with his hands tied, into Jerusalem, and finally nailed, naked, to the cross, whilst the sun hid his light, the earth quaked, and He who had restored the dead to life was Himself reduced to the state of the dead! Was there not need of the Spirit of God in each line, in each word of such a narration, to choose appropriately from an age, and from a world of reminiscences ?
It was necessary moreover that the sacred historians should be guided by the Spirit, in order that they should know how to maintain that divine prudence which not only reveals itself in that information which they give, but also in the reserve which they manifest, not only in the terms which they employ, but also in those which they shun.
And to give here some proof of this, see, for example, how they speak of the mother of Jesus. What divine foresight, what prophetic wisdom there is both in their narratives and in their expressions, How easy it would have been for them, in their ardent adoration of the son, to have expressed themselves too respectfully of the mother! Would not a single word, suffered to escape them through an imprudence so natural in their first emotions, have forever authorized the idolatry of the ages to come towards Mary, and the crime of the worship which has been rendered her ? But that word they never uttered. Did they even once call her the Mother of God ? No, not even that: although He was for them Emmanuel, the God-man, the Word which was in the beginning, which was with God, which was God, and which was made flesh. Listen to them. What do they say of her after the death and the resurrection of their Saviour ? Only one sentence, after which they are silent, respecting her forever! “These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren." They do not name her there as the first or the last ; she appears there as the mother of Jesus, among the brethren of Jesus and the women of Gallilee. And what do they say of her before the death of the Lord ? Reflect upon it well; ah! it is not thus that men recount events! among all the words which Jesus Christ must have addressed to his mother, from the commencement of his public mission until its termination, they have reported to us but three sentences. Here is the first : “ Woman, what have I to do with thee,”-or what is this to me and thee, -when she interfered in his ininistry which had just commenced, and asked him to perform a miracle. Again, when a certain woman, from among the people, exclaimed in her ardent enthusi. asm : “ Blessed is the womb which bare thee and the paps which thou hast sucked,”' " Say," he replied, " Blessed rather are they who hear the word of God and keep it."-Listen now to the third; his mother and brethren had been shaken in their faith ; they had listened to those who had said : “ He is beside himself !” And some one came and told him : " Thy mother and thy bretliren are without, who desire to see thee." “ Who is my mother?" he replied. And stretching forth his hand towards his disciples, he said : “ Behold my mother.... every woman who shall do the will of my Father who is in heaven is my inother.” — And when, finally, he saw her, from the cross, he called her no more by the name of mother, but he bequeathed her to the disciple whom he loved,s aying : “ Woman, behold thy son: John, behold thy mother;" and from that hour that disciple received her into his house, not to adore her, but to protect her, as a feeble and suffering being, whose soul had been pierced as with a sword.
Is it thus, we ask again, that man relates events, and was there not need that the prophetic Spirit should be the narrator of all these facts ? pp. 217-223.
Under the head of Vulgar Details, which constitutes the third section in this chapter, the author makes some beautiful remarks, to show that what are esteemed such details are most instructive portions of the Scriptures, when rightly studied.
The Fourth chapter is on the use of Sacred Criticism, in its relation to Inspiration. This topic is also discussed at very considerable length, and with much ability, in the compass of three sections, whose titles are as follows:
1. Sacred Criticism a Servant, not a Judge.
3. Sacred Criticism the porter (or door-keeper) of the Temple, and not its Divinity.
The proper province of Sacred Criticism is very clearly and justly defined in this chapter.
Criticism (says our author) is a noble science. It is so in regard to its object-the study of the destinies of the sacred text, its canon, its manuscripts, its versions, its witnesses, the vast numbers of those who have cited it. It is so by reason of its services :-what triumphs obtained over infidelity, what objections reduced to silence, what wicked doubts dissipated forever!-It is so in regard to its history :-how many emi. nent men have consecrate, to it either the devotion of a pious life, or the resources of the most beautiful genius! It is so, finally, by reason of its immense labors, of which no one can know the extent, unless he has studied it. God forbid that we should ever oppose faith to science; the faith which lives by the truth, to the science which seeks for it! that faith which sceks for it (the truth) directly at the hand of God, to that science which seeks for it more indirectly elsewhere, and which often finds it! All that is true in one place is in pre-established harmony with that which is true in another and more elevated place. Faith, then, knows in advance, and before having seen any thing, that all truth will render testimony to it. If then all true science, whatever it may be, is the friend of faith, Sacred Criticism is more than a friend ; she is almost a relative. But it she is honorable, useful, necessary, she is so only so long as she remains true, and keeps her proper place. So long as she does not quit the field which belongs to her, she is worthy of our respect; but from the moment she leaves it, it becomes necessary to restrain her; she is then no longer a science, but only a silly soothsayer.
We have no space for further extracts from this most interesting chapter. We pass on, therefore, to the next.
In chapter V. the author gives us what he terms a Didactic Summary of the Doctrine of Inspiration. After having given in the first section, a retrospective notice of what he has already advanced, in the preceding portions of his book, he devotes the entire second and remaining section, which extends through SECOND SERIES, VOL. VI. NO. I.