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and utterly alike; for at all times they have (We somewhat envy our Presbyterian friends been divers, and may be changed according the compliments they gain from either side, to the diversities of countries, times, and men's as so much better than the opposite extreme.) manners, so that nothing be ordained against But we confess our inability to reconcile this God's Word.” There is soune force in B. S.'s milder form of auti-Prelacy, with all its comargument, that uninspired men may not be pact order and godly discipline, with the regarded as having like authority with those powers so plainly conferred by individual who were inspired. Our case for Episcopacy apostolic authority upon even young men; is, Is it accordant with scripture, or repug- and still more the ultra view of independent nant to it? If the latter, the debate is, of churches with a direction to one person to course, closed; if the former, it does not " ordain elders in every city,”-a direction follow that all other methods are repugnant. which, if it were intended to furnish a model Moreover, if, instead of simple accordance, for imitation, would be fatal to Independency; there is direct example, their position is, at and, if it were not, would leave its opponents least, a responsible one who decide not to on an invaluable vantage-ground. The pasimitate the example, unless it can be shown sages referred to by J. N., in which ordinato be unsuited to the country, times, and tions are recorded, are very hastily assumed men's manners."
to include under the term presbyter none but Again, one party to the debate, the Con- equals in official rank-J. N. forgetting that gregationalist, is "out of court” upon the we do not contend for the names, but the Church and State question inasmuch as facts_namely, that the three gradations of though an Establishment is impossible on (1), a superintending minister (who was not Congregational, it is by no means necessary always, even in the apostles' own days, himon Episcopal or Presbyterian principles. self an apostle - we entreat the recollection Further, the secularity and political bondage of this circumstance, as, if Paul cannot be complained of are not consequences, but said to be a precedent, Timothy may): 2, & accidents. Once more, the question of cost minister in more immediate charge of a paris a manifest irrelevancy. You can no more ticular body or congregation; 3, a deaconsettle a question of this kind by quoting are clearly traceable in the sacred writings. church statistics, than determine Queen If this latter office has become confused, Victoria's title to the throne by examining Episcopalians, and not Episcopacy, are the expenses of the Royal household. And, chargeable. finally, we protest against employing the This harmony with scripture being supPapacy as an argument against Episcopacy. posed, the abstract question, so eloquently The habit of attributing the frightfal evils argued by B. S., loses its force. If Christiof that system to the union of Church and anity does not trammel the mind, its inspired State, or the Episcopal form of government, exponents could certainly not have desired rather than to its origin, doctrines, and prac- to do so, and a system of action which they tices, is one of the most perilous for Protes- adopted or sanctioned cannot fairly be charged tantism that can be conceived.
with having that tendency. In this light, First, then, Is Episcopacy in harmony the argument on freedom of thought appears with the word of God? This is conceded as inconclusive as, indeed, it is on its own by the able Congregational contributor- merits. The reference to Paul's denunciation B. S., and analyzed in so masterly a manner of an angel who should even preach another by F. J. L., that it is difficult to add any doctrine is singularly unfortunate; what can thing to it. We take leave, however, to be more dogmatic or authoritative? Not except to his inferential allusion to the ana- less so is the illustration: “Let any man logy of bigh-priest, priests, and Levites, attempt to coerce himself into a conviction under the old dispensation. Christ himself or belief that the sun will not rise to-morrow, is the only high-priest of the Christian and he will find his efforts vain and his will system, and this, so far as the allusion had powerless.” But supposing he did believe it, value, would only leave us two orders, and and that fifty others believed it; that belief rather favour Presbyterianism. We certainly would ipso facto be their creed, and how feel the Presbyterian case to be stronger on absurd would B. S. acknowledge it to be if, scriptural ground than the Congregational. when constituted a community, they were denounced as illiberal, and seeking to impose tendency. It furnishes it. We want reliburthens on the human mind, on refusing to gious influence among all classes. It carries admit a believer in sunrise to membership, it there. We want voices for God in the or expelling a brother who had become per- senate. It provides them. We want that verted to the conventional delusion! How systematic action upon the masses of the long would a congregation hold together population, by which alone we can hope to which was resolved to admit every person to reform society. It is eminently adapted to membership who professed his belief in the that end. We want a warring agency against Godhead?
Popery, which, while it has the gospel, equally The following general considerations, with others, to oppose to Romish corruptions, among others, may be urged for Episcopacy: has also ancient and veritable catholic claims -1. The systematic development of the to oppose to Romish prejudices and scruples. principle of authority. It is just that It is such an agency. It is calculated to organization, which, worked for evil, has make, what Presbyterianism may in a lesser proved in the hands of the Papacy so dan- degree, what Congregationalism never can in gerous to mankind. No one would think of any degree, a Church for the People. managing an army on Independent principles; Which system is productive of the best and the inost fanatical Republican has never results? We go fearlessly to the point, and attempted to construct a state upon them. affirm at once-Episcopacy. The Church But we believe that if we could furnish our of England has had her season of deadly non-Episcopal friends with an example of a spiritual lethargy. But in Scotland, also, perfect diocese, side by side with a perfect Socrates long occupied the pulpit to the Presbytery and Congregational church, they exclusion of Paul, nor did Paul regain it would be so charmed with the former as to without considerable difficulty; and when he accept its principle at once. 2. The value did so, the country manses still swarmed of placing the most honoured, learned, and with the worldly and the cold. And in experienced pastors of the communion, in a England and Ireland, a melancholy succesposition to benefit by their counsel and en- sion of sanctuaries and congregations deadcouragement the younger and less ex- ened and slept,—the gospel stream has long perienced. We dare not, however, carry ceased to flow, and Socinian Infidelity now this to the extent of including the idea of broods over the stagnant waters. Episcopacy stimulus and promotion, employed by another has kept together the humble churches of contributor, as we feel such motives to be the Continent, whose kindred communions inconsistent with the sanctity of the work. are now torn with the nationalistic heresy. 3. The principle of National Churches is so It has given to the world the most devoted clearly to be found in the word of God, that and useful of churches—the Moravians. It any system of church government which, has maintained its vitality and activity, like Congregationalism, is quite incompatible not without persecution, in Scotland; it has with it, appears to be ipso facto condemned. done a great work, and won the allegiance Few perhaps will question that the Episcopal | and love of growing multitudes, in republican is that form of ecclesiastical government America; and it is working in the British which most perfectly harmonizes with that Colonies, amidst inconceivable disadvantages, principle. 4. Congregationalism not only with a zeal and effect worthy of apostolic denies the right of the ministry to be “lords days. It is winning souls, by tens of thouover God's heritage,” but actually subordi- sands, from Romisb bondage, and is, in the nates the former to the latter. In Episco- form of the Established Church, the object pacy, clerical supremacy is complained of; in of the bitterest hatred of the Papacy. Not Presbytery, clergy and laity act more con- to dwell on the priceless treasures it has jointly; in Congregationalism, the people contributed to theology, and the general sergovern. This we can find nowhere taught vices it has rendered to the vindication of or sanctioned in scripture.
the faith, it has nursed many of the most Is Episcopacy suited to the times ? Its honoured and useful servants God ever saw compact, consolidated character makes it so. fit to employ; nay, the greatest (which is In these disintegrating, dissolving days we synonymous with the earliest) names in the want a barrier against the schismatizing history of Nonconformity and of Methodism, received their nourishment at her breast, and | least, permit it a place in the machinery became the stalwart beings they were, under Christ's kingdom. And let the churches of her fostering guidance. There are “a cloud Christ, one in object, be one in spirit, though of witnesses” for Episcopacy. If they do they cannot be one in action. Be their not establish its Divine origin, they prove it standards lawn, silk, or broadcloth,“ Christ a fact too great to be ignored, a power too crucified,” should be written on all. Let it potent to be despised, an agency too noble to suffice that it is intended to do God's work, be scorned, and too useful to be abandoned. and let it not be recorded of any, “We forDestroy it not, for a blessing is in it.” At bad him, for he followeth not us.” J.S.J.
The subject of the present debate forms / any man to put a minister into a charge one of the most complicated that has yet without the consent of the congregation. been brought under the notice of the readers The Independent polity is represented by of this magazine: it presents, indeed, almost every isolated congregation throughout the insuperable obstacles to the patient investi- world: no tie binds them together; they are gator, who is desirous of arriving at a true left to fight against the foe, alone and ansolution of the quæstio vexata; obstacles aided; each congregation disposes of its own mainly arising from the triple nature of the spiritual affairs, and lays down its own spiquestion, and from the amount of scholasti- ritual laws and its own doctrines: hence, cism with which the question is obscured, these may be as varied as the congregations, and wbich obliges the supporters of either“ and veer to every point of the compass.”. division of it to quote from the original The question under review naturally ditext, thus preventing the bulk of the read- vides itself into two great divisions. First, ers from being able to see their way clearly. Which is the most scriptural ? Second, Again, the number of sub-divisions into Which is the inost beneficial and useful? which some of these bodies are broken up, I. That the Presbyterian Church is the also presents a great obstacle; for example, most scriptural we infer from the fact that, the Episcopalian Church, or method of church at the assembly held at Jerusalem, to congovernment, is represented by the Anglican, sider the question of circumcision, the memthe Roman, the Greek, and the Armenian bers all appeared as equal, no one usurping Churches, all holding diverse views on some authority over another; all of equal standing, points of Christian doctrine, but all uniting as co-presbyters. The apostle Peter, in his in the maintenance of one doctrine common first epistle, inscribed to the scattered stranto all, viz., the government of the church by gers, chap. v. ver. 1, says, “ The elders that bishops, or patriarchs, met either in convo- are among you I exhort, who am also an cation or council. The Presbyterian is elder;" or, as it should be more properly represented by the Established, Free, United, translated, Who also am a co-elder, of the and Reformed Presbyterian Churches in same power and the same authority; one Scotland. Of these, the most important body with them; not a lord over the heritage. is the Free Church. Of equal numbers in Paul prefers no claim for higher honours, or Scotland with the Establishment, it has the for superior standing; but is content to be advantage of being related to the English reckoned equal to the humblest elder of and Irish Presbyterian Churches, who hold the flock. Now within the Presbyterian the same views as the Free Church. The Church the same polity prevails. Every main difference amongst the Presbyterian minister or presbyter is armed with equal churches, however, is slight; they all (with authority; all stand upon the same platform; the exception of the United Presbyterian there is no desire in the breast of any one to Church) hold that a State Church is scrip- rule the church, but the highest aim of each tural, but it is as to the grounds of that con- | is to promote the well-being of the church at nexion that they differ; they hold the same large. Moreover, the lay portion of the essential religious doctrines, but the Free church is pretty fully represented: in the Church refuses to allow the State to interfere lowest court of the Presbyterian Church
, in ecclesiastical affairs; nor will it permit viz., the Session Court, there is only one
presbyter and from eight to twelve laymen; ( venerable and illustrious Chalmers made his in the next court, the Presbytery, there is a last visit to London, he was closely queslayman for every presbyter ; the Synod, tioned by Sir James Graham as to the again, is composed of the same elements, grounds on which the Free Church would equal lay and equal clerical; in the highest return within the pale of the Established court there is a slightly predominant clerical Church; and he at the same time expressed influence, but on the whole the lay and cle- his regret that such a division had taken rical are equally represented. The Episco- place, as well as his own willingness to use palian and the Congregational Churches go what influence he had to obtain a satisfactory to the two extremes: the clergy of the first reunion. We have deemed this explanation meet in a Convocation, at which no one is necessary of that greatest calamity which allowed to speak, but by the permission of has befallen the Scottish Kirk, and which Her Majesty's Government; in the second threw beyond her walls many of her most the lay influence has an overwhelming pre- honoured sons, as F. J. L. wishes to ponderance. This we consider to be another attach it entirely to the polity of the reason why the church which is governed by church. The blame is not necessarily attacha Presbyterian polity is the most scriptural. able to Presbyterianism as a system, and we
The great-indeed the only—argument are much inclined to take up the words of advanced by F.J.L. against Presbyterianism the late lamented Lord Jeffrey, when inis, the number of schisms that have occurred formed that the act of disruption had actually within its pale; the last of which he very taken place: “I am proud of my country: characteristically denominates a secession, there is not another country under heaven whilst he must know that those who left where the same thing would have been the General Assembly of 1843 were the done.” Long, long will it be ere the rank majority of that assembly, so that disruption festering of High-church Puseyism will is the proper term. Moreover, the two leave the Episcopalian church, or be cut out bodies are now nearly equal in numbers. and cast without the borders of the system Although we cannot deny that there have by the real evangelical portion of that been many schisms in the Scottish Church, church: the days of the seven protesting yet it is worthy of notice that the Presby- bishops have apparently gone, or why is this terian Church at the same time contains party allowed to remain in a Protestant within itself elements that will one day draw church, when all England is aware that all these bodies once more into one great they are acting as the emissaries of the whole. The memorable epoch of the dis- Bishop of Rome? ruption, although it added another to the F. J. L. further reasons that the Episcomany outstanding churches in Scotland, was palian must necessarily be the inost scripthe first step for reconciling the various tural, because of the so-called apostolic bodies again. Two minor divisions of Pres- succession” of its clergy. The bishops, he byterianism in Scotland have already joined says, represent the apostles; the priests are the Free Church; and other two bodies have equal to the bishops of apostolic times. coalesced together, and are now known under Then it follows that, for reasons which best the appellation of the United Presbyterian suited itself, the Anglican Church has aboChurch. These divisions, however, would lished the office of the apostleship, and elenever have occurred in the Scottish Kirk, vated the next order into their place, to fill had it not been for the illegal interference of their room; but in order to keep up the trithe State in ecclesiastical affairs; indeed, fold balance they have brought in a new Her Majesty's Government, who were the order, or rather revived an old one, which means of bringing about the disruption of was rendered unnecessary at the death of 1843, have acknowledged their fault through Christ, viz., priests, so that, by F. J. L.'s the mouths of several of their number. The own finding, the Episcopalian Church is not Earl of Aberdeen said, in his place in the the same church as that which flourished in House of Lords, at the time when the Uni- apostolic times: if his reasoning were corversity Seats Bill was before that House, rect, then the true church is not that of " The Free Church is the
true representative Prelacy, but the church founded by Edward of the ancient Scottish Kirk;" and when our Irving, which has resuscitated this very
apostleship. We intended to have followed of persecution. This being the reason why F. J. L. into his reasoning on the meaning B. S. has thought it right to link the cause of the words episcopos and presbuteros; but of Episcopacy and Presbyterianism together, we opine that such is not necessary, seeing we are forced to object to it. On the same that our friend J. N. has completely driven grounds we might argue against Episcopacy F. J. L. from his positions.
and Congregationalism, by referring to the Turning from F. J. L., we meet an ho- relationship that must necessarily exist benoured champion, who has returned unscathed tween them, because they both manifested from many a hard-fought campaign, and an intolerant spirit. All the reasoning of who has covered himself with the laurel of B. S. we hold, therefore, applies solely to the fame. It is with diffidence on our part that Episcopalian Church; further, we can take we are prevailed upon to meet this Goliath up the sentiment penned by him on page amid the din and turmoil of the wordy, ele- 221, col. 1, and appropriate it as our own, mental war in which we are engaged; but because, in the Presbyterian Church in Scotgrasping fervidly the sword, we hope to land, with the exception of the Establishestablish the truth of the Presbyterian polity ment, the people, or rather the congregation, in face of B. S. and his system of Congrega- have the right of choosing their own minister; tional policy. That this will not be difficult so that thus Presbyterianism can say, as on our part appears evident from the mode well as Congregationalism in this matter, in which B. S. has treated Presbyterianism. that the electing of the spiritual head of When showing the fallacy of a church governed each church is in the hands of the communiby the clergy, as is done in the Episcopalian cants forming that church. communion, he has very considerately taken II. We notice, briefly, the question which it for granted that the two churches are of these three churches is the most useful, alike; and in support of his testimony quotes or productive of the best results ? And from Milton a passage in which he designates here, at the outset, we beg to return our
the Presbyterian as the most intolerant of warmest thanks to “Rolla," not only for this the two." Now we are aware that in Mil- exposé of the defects of Episcopacy as a syston's troublous day the Presbyterian Church tem, but also for his able defence of Presbydid exhibit an intolerant spirit; but we at terianism. F. J. L., in his second paper, the same time are aware that the very go- brings forward five reasons why Presbyterivernment which B. S. lauds so highly was anism is not productive of the best results. as intolerant as any of the three. Has B. S. Reason 1 is answered by our dissertation on never read the history of New England ? the first division of this debate. Reason 2 is Has he never heard of the bigoted Puritan at least twelve years too late in seeing the divines driving from the territory of New light; it evidently applies to the two great England those who happened to dissent from factions in the Scottish Kirk, prior to the their opinions? and has he never heard how disruption. Reason 3 we simply query; for, one branch of those thus driven by the ex- having read the life of Dr. Chalmers, we treme intolerance of these men formed a new have never seen the statement F. J. L. settlement at Rhode Island ? and how another makes. Reason 4 is deniable: we have only branch took shelter in Catholic Maryland ? to re-mention the name of Chalmers, as well Has he never heard of these same Puritan as that of Dr. Gordon, whose work on “Christ divines persecuting unoffending creatures for as revealed to the Ancient Churches” proves witchcraft, &c.? If he has not, we beg to that he is worthy of a place amongst persons inform him that such was the case. We do of the highest range of intellect; and if he not thus mean to exculpate Presbyterianism possesses that, then he is of the highest rank, for its intolerance; but we think that no for the man who is possessed of a high and man should hold up the failings of any par- lofty intellect is the real nobleman. The ticular body who may be opposed in principle name of Dr. Candlish may be mentioned, in to his own, whilst all the time his own connexion with his very able and critical church is as deep in the mire. We, for our examination of “ Maurice's Theological Esown part, regret exceedingly that any profes- says"-a writer, by the way, whom F.J.L. sedly Protestant church should so far forget if we may judge from his numerous quotaits high calling as to carry on the evil work | tions, is highly enamoured with. Reason 5