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was modified by superior natural parts or have in the pedigree of the knight of La extraordinary zeal; influences which obtain Mancha. We beg F. J. L. to refer us to everywhere, and among all orders of men. the genealogy of any one bishop carried up Bishop was used to mean oversight of peo- to any one of the apostles with indisputable ple, not of ministers; for all who exercised authenticity, in order that we may take the sacred functions of the ministry were on knowledge of the circumstance, and confess a level, were of one order, and without dis- our error. He alludes to something of this tinction of rank. The others who were asso- kind, but forbears to mention it broadly; but ciated with them in the management were until this is vouchsafed to us, we cannot do not teaching elders, but men of good report, other than respectfully refuse to accept called to assist these in maintaining a super- assurances where proof may be had. We vision over the morals of the people, and to would, however, direct attention to one or give effect to the discipline of the church : two particulars, which may serve to disabuse they assisted the deacons, also, in attending his mind of this cunningly devised fiction. to the temporal affairs of the church, and in There is no evidence in the Scriptures seeing that the poor were properly cared for. that the apostles transmitted the virtues of But, supposing for one moment that the their own characters to successors; the fact ministry had consisted of three orders (as he that they did not keep up their own numbers contends for in his first paper, p. 209, and by this means renders it extremely doubtful. J. S. J. in the third paper, p. 286), grada- Contemporaneous history is silent regarding tional in rank and power, the existence of an event of unspeakable importance to sucthese cannot surely be accepted as a scrip- ceeding ages; it seems improbable that the ture warrant for all the orders which we numerous small communities of Christians, find in the Church of England; viz., curate, scattered over the wide-spread extent of the chaplain, vicar, deacon, rector, incumbent, Roman dominions, should be each superincanon, archdeacon, subdean, dean, suffragan tended by a pastor deriving episcopal authobishop, archbishop, primate, together with rity from the apostles. It must be conall the disparity of circumstances connected fessed that, during the decline of the Roman with these, the poverty of some, the pomp empire, the history of the Church is involved and glory and worldly consideration of others. in considerable obscurity; and the occasional The origin of all this may be shortly stated: glimpses of fact discernible, tend rather to the designation of bishop was the name make the apostolical succession more myoccasionally used towards pastors of parti- thical than before, from the irregularities cular congregations in the first ages of the occurring during these uncertain times. At Christian Church, but more frequently given the breaking up of the empire, when Chrisby way of courtesy to such as from their tianity found its way into the partiallyage, learning, or superior parts, were called civilized and wretchedly ill-governed coun, upon to preside in the ecclesiastical courts. tries of Europe, it is just possible that it did Subsequently the ambition of the clergy be- so by means of a chance-ordained ecclesiastic; came inordinate, especially among those in but we can scarcely suppose the propagation the capital cities and large towns, who to have been continued throughout a long thirsted to be distinguished from those in series of years, during these unsettled ages, rural districts, and thence devised that long without some lapse or escape from the prearray of offices, from metropolitans down- scribed ordination, when temptations to aswards-offices unheard of among the apos- sume the ecclesiastic habit for personal tolical churches. These orders, with slight safety, or from last of ease or luxury, were modifications, Henry VIII., through a spirit so strong. But if the mind can assent to it, of rivalry, adopted in order that he might let us even suppose all these mischances have something to pique himself upon in overcome, and the efficacy of the apostolic contemplating the gorgeous hierarchy which character safely transmitted by the strictest his quarrel with the Pope had left him in lineal descent to the churches of the middle possession of, and of which he was now the ages,—what better are we?
heretical churches sprung from these which For our own part we have quite as much have the same claim to the episcopal chafaith in the apostolical succession as wel racter, and how are our bishops to prove
that they do not derive their title to exercise solemnity and strength to the discharge of the functions of their order from bishops of their functions;" and surely, the awful conän heretical persuasion; besides, wherein sciousness that they are watched over by consists the value or utility of the succes- bishops in alliance with the throne, bishops sion, if it may circulate in heretical churches, odorous with the sanctity of the successorand proves no safeguard or guarantee to ship preserved eighteen hundred years by sound doctrine ? Turning from the stream strict lineal descent, for these latter days, of history, we cannot refrain from examining —surely, we say, in the words of F. J. L., the validity of the claim put forward to the Presbyters and others of her ministers successorship, from the analogy which we are (will) do their duty," guided as they are by justified in supposing would exist between " established formularies and ceremonials,” the cases: there, where we would expect to and “creeds," " those inestimable safeguards find a similarity between the apostles and against error," "found always in the comtheir successors, no such thing is discernible. pany of bishops.” “ That the perpetuation of The apostles made the preaching of the the apostolic office has been the means of word their business and delight : their pre- preserving the Church, and linking together tended successors have made this over to different ages and different countries in chains their inferior clergy. To teach and to of harmony and love,” who can doubt ? preach is too mean an office for Episcopal F.J. L. puts the political aspect of EpisChurch dignitaries ; to govern is more con- copacy in a very taking light—the worst sonant with their exalted notions, thence abuses are seldom beyond being supported that which in a faithful Christian ministry with plausible arguments, and we confess to should be esteemed the most honourable his adroitness in making the worse appear office holds but a secondary place. The the better reason; but to one acquainted with apostles, in addition to this their principal the gradual development and multiplication work, gave a completed character to their of orders in the “venerable sister establishordinary ministrations by dispensing the ment,” even his specious defence must fail sacraments, by exercising the functions of to give satisfaction. The theory of a gradiscipline and government, and by an occa- dational clergy, as we apprehend it, is to sional act of ordination—a prerogative which have religion “mix throughout the whole they exercised in common with the presby- mass of life, and blend with all classes of ters ; these, however, they did not put for society,” by means of accredited ministers of ward as a pretext for exemption from the corresponding rank. We agree in thinking it performance of their more humble though an arrangement capable of being wisely apnot less useful duties, as the bishops of the plied to our state of civilization; but we Anglican Establishment do. The offices of decidedly object to the inversion which our the apostles and bishops have no siinilarity provident Constitution has seen it necessary thus far ; the apostleship of the twelve was to make, by which the higher a clergyman confirmed by their power of working mira- rises in office, the more he has to do with cles, and of imparting the same miraculous temporal, and the less with spiritual conagency to others. But our modern bishops cerns. So much is this the case, that the have neither the same extraordinary parts burden of spiritual care and instruction—the to perform, nor have they the same extraor- most difficult and important part of the work dinary means at command. In fact, as J. N. —is confined to the poorer, well named the observes, “the men, the office, and the working clergy. One would have thought times, are changed ; " there can be succes that a hierarchy, culminating in the apostles' sorship in an office the duties of which have successors, would have had the ministry of been superseded, and the powers for which things secular in a subordinate part; and that have been withdrawn. Who can fail, then, those holding the most exalted position in to contemplate with profound satisfaction the hierarchy, would have been the most the influence which this “visible and un- emulous to follow in the footsteps of their dying representation of apostolical functions" predecessors. No supposition could be further exercises upon the clergy and the people of from the mark. Had such been the case, we the Church of England. To be sure, “in could then have given cordial compliance to lier ordination of ministers (it must give) the injunction of Paul:-" The elders who
rule well,” saith be, “count worthy of double these church dignitaries do not themselves honour, especially them who minister in the officiate, the end is not served of leavening word and doctrine.” It matters little to the all ranks with the principles and practice of bishops who are counted worthy of double Christianity, which, according to the theory honour, provided they enjoy the temporalities
. upheld by our opponents, the institution of No, we can never agree that these should a gradational clergy should serve. The abandon their proper duties to religion, for Church of England derives no superiority, in the purpose of enabling them to exalt her point of usefulness, from the graduated rank "mitred fronts in courts and parliaments." and authority of her ministry, for her officiThat Episcopacy is not politically useful, in ating clergymen do not bold an equal civil the sense indicated by F. J. L. and J. S. J., position with the ministers of the Scottish of bringing the gospel effectively to bear on Kirk; and, therefore, according to the reaall classes of society, we have no hesitation soning endorsed by F. J. L. and J. S. J., less in asserting, both from the duties attached likely of being listened to with sentiments to the respective dignities, and the manner in of respect by the different classes of the comwhich these are distributed. A short review monwealth, especially those of aristocratic of the various clerical duties may not be out pretensions. Let no argument, then, be of place here. The spiritual care of the founded on the rank and wealth that prevails parishes is chiefly intrusted to curates, along among the high ecclesiastics of the Episcopal with the vicars and rectors of the poorer Church, for they are not called upon by sort; these statedly conduct the public ser- virtue of their office as clergymen, armed vices. Rectors in easy circumstances employ with “ the word and doctrine,” to mix with curates, and, of course, rank higher, while the class to which they belong, nor expected they do less. Somewhat superior to these to exercise their prerogatives, and privileges, are the rural deans, who exercise a degree of and irfrence, with those who, from their superintendence over a certain number of worldly position, esteem themselves superior ministers. Next in order are the venerable to reproof, instruction, or edification. There and reverend archdeacons, who, in subordi- is more warmth of sunshine in the valley nation to the bishop, charge themselves with than on the hill-top, and so it is in the the care and inspection of a division of the hierarchy. There is more true godliness of diocese, visiting the clergy triennially, and character, and more zeal for the propagation delivering to them, when assembled, charges, of the gospel among the bumble pastors, anent matters of discipline, or changes in than among all the dignitaries by whom they ecclesiastical law. High above canons, hono- are over-ridden and impoverished. rary canons, and minor canons, is placed the The entire polity is so defective, that very reverend dean; the most weighty part there is no reasonable prospect of exhausting of whose duty is to inspect the church build the exceptionable matter, and we therefore irgs once every three years, or cause the turn to Congregationalism. same to be done. This office is next in rank Congregationalism, unlike the other systo that of bishop, and much more of a sine-tems of church polity, does not represent cure; for, with the duties devolving on bim any one code of doctrines -any one body as a peer in parliament, as a diocesan main- of principles. Every handful of seceders taining strict discipline among his clergy, constitute themselves into a congregation; as an extensive landowner superintending under the saine polity we find off-shoots his estate, he may always have his hands from every church, connected with each full of work if he chooses; and he possesses other only by the name under which their the power of doing much good, if his mind distinctive principles are hidden. Congregalie that way; but we cannot conceal from tionalism is so diversified in its phases, that ourselves the fact that, even if bis Episcopal it cannut be synoptically placed in any creed: duties are faithfully performed, his mind is its creeds are multiform; it embraces the diverted from things spiritual and ecclesias- accumulated defections of all the churcbes. tical, by things civil and temporal Not to B. S. seems to think this its chief claim to make mention of the archbishops and primate, our suffrages. “The Universal Church," whose duties differ little from that of ordi- says he, “ thus becomes a great firmament nary bishops, it is very evident, that as of thought, where star differs from star in
glory, and in distance from the central more energetic instrumentality to pioneer light of God's absolute truth, but where the way for it. each reflects some rays of Divine wisdom, as “Such churches,” in the words of one of it moves in its own appointed path.” Con- the defenders of the system, can only gregationalism gives full scope to each clergy- prosper in proportion to the earnest Chrisman or layman to preach and teach as tianity of their members; a promiscuous mass his own taste may direct,” uncontrolled by of mere professors would never act upon any authority ; it does not “ legislate in purely spiritual laws, and an enlarged piety matters of faith," or govern” its subject is absolutely necessary to counteract the communities. In this, with all deference to tendency in man to turn freedom into licenB. S., we say it is opposed to human nature, tiousness.” Even looking at it in this mild for the majority of men do believe in estab- light, Presbyterianism is preferable; seeing lished forms of belief; the mind has a ten- that while it proffers equal spiritual freedom dency to epitomize its knowledge, that it to the believer, it at the same time guaranmay be the more easily recollected, or com- tees an immunity from those distractions municated to others with the greater cer- which this unlimited admission of the popular tainty and effect. In this tendency, con- element renders almost unavoidable. fessions of faith have their origin; they have In closing our defence of Presbyterianism a necessary and derivative authority, in pro- we believe we cannot do better than give portion to the fidelity with which they render additional prominence to one or two points the great truths and principles of the sacred which have not, in our opinion, been suffiwritings. This rejection of defined princi- ciently insisted on. ples of belief is a serious defect in Congre- Where the affairs of the Church are engational Churches. Authority in spiritual tirely in the hands of the clergy, they have matters is the prerogative of the pastor, and, ever been found chargeable with legislating generally, no limitations are set as to the for themselves; but the principle of having doctrines to be preached. Congregationalism the management conducted by an equal is wanting in principles to test its clergymen number of laymen and clergymen renders by, in admitting them to orders; to guide this impossible. In the Presbyterian Church them in their expositions of Divine truth; this system forms part of the constitution, to aid the members in judging of their pas- and has been found to work to admiration tor's faithfulness; and to present, as it were, in uniting the cordial sympathy of the peoa partition-wall betwixt them and defection. ple along with that of the ministry, in forThere is in it no stability; in the course of warding the interests of the church tempoyears, or by a change of pastor, it may touch rarily and spiritually ; this arrangement any point from high Calvinism to ultra- gives the people to know that it is, indeed, Latitudinarianism. It presents no bulwark their church, and that they are not called against the influx of error, and possesses no upon to take part in her counsels for the inherent self-sustaining principle; but, sup- purpose of merely in name securing their posing the Congregationalism in view to be concurrence to her measures.
Both have an Evangelical, we feel persuaded that it does equal right and liberty to propose and obnot possess that unity and compactness of ject; and excepting the merely local and constitution necessary to give it that aggres- private transactions of the Kirk Sessions, sive character which a church ought to the whole business, being supposed to be of have, and without which its usefulness is public interest, is conducted in open court. certainly much abridged. It may subsist It is impossible, under circumstances like where true piety, and mutual forbearance, these, for the clergy to acquire an undue and respect, inspire its members; but it amount of influence, or even to acquire powdever could have made head-way as Pres- ers unpalatable to her people; for the elders byterianism has done, bringing within the are elected by the people to represent them courts of God's house the vagrant mul- in these courts, on account of their superior titudes of practical heathens, that live with- intelligence, respectable standing in society, out either the love or the fear of Heaven uprightness of character, and christian piety. before their eyes. It may do good service with such men to mingle in her councils, as a supplementary institution, but cannot and give the benefit of their large and various have vigorous life, independently of some experiences in business and the world, we can conceive of no assembly of men capable | the patronage vested in the Crown, which of more certainly giving well-advised and has, for many years, shown a strong dispojudicious decisions, nor any whose decisions sition to settle vacant parishes in accordance should carry with them greater weight with the wishes of the people, wherever throughout the country at large. This cer- there appears a general agreement or unantainly presents a favourable contrast with imity in their choice.” the Church of England, whose ecclesiastical Mark with what jealousy even this is courts have been in abeyance somewhere guarded against the possibility of abuse:about a century and a half, and have at best “ By the existing law, objections of all kinds no power to act without a mandate from the can be received; and the Presbytery, having Sovereign.
regard to the character and number of the Let us now consider, for one moment, her objectors, as well as all the circumstances of alliance with the State,—this feature that the case, are empowered, if they see fit, to calls down such unmerited reprobation from stop the settlement. The presentee, of our Congregational brethren. To our judg- course, can appeal to the superior courts. inent, this is placed in a very satisfactory But if the Assembly, the court of last review, light by one circumstance, which seems to be homologates the decision, there the matter very generally overlooked, viz. :-her stan- takes end,' and the presentee is set aside." dards of Christian doctrine--her books of In opposition to the insinuations of F.J.L. discipline-her form of government—were and his coadjutors, we feel persuaded that it all settled, existing, and in operation prior is to the moderate yet competent provision to her connection with the State; and that I made for our clergy that we are indebted these underwent no modification, but were for that zeal in the discharge of their duties incorporated as a part of the institutions of which obtains among them. We feel a just ihe country, and remain to this day in all | national pride in contemplating their genetheir original force. The connection would rally high intellectual and moral status; and certainly have been censurable, had she are satisfied that, when all circumstances bated one tittle of her spiritual independence; are considered, we need not hesitate to probut as the case stands we look upon the nounce them a wise, honest, pious, and useful connection with the State as an arrangement | body, in whom are reflected the various exby which religion is honoured as it ought to cellencies of the system which we advocate. be at the hands of the civil magistrate, and The Scottish people are pre-eminently a by which her ministers are enabled to carry religious people, in all their ranks; and it is out their important mission with greater a glorious testimony to the evangelizing faithfulness and effect.
energy of the Presbyterian Church that they Exception is frequently taken to Presby- do possess this character. Had the benefices terianism because it admits of patronage; been more liberally endowed, it might have but patronage, as limited and contracted in opened up the way for the admission of perScotland, is a very different thing from the sons to holy orders that cared little for patronage practised in the appointments to religion beyond her emoluments. It is, inlivings in the English Church.“ In general, deed, to us a matter of gratitude that the patronage is held as a trust by a superior revenues of our Establishment are not such for the benefit of the parish in which he as to present a temptation to unsanctified posseses a patrimonial interest; and the ambition. We have no faith in the dramatic attachment which resident proprietors natu. machinery of rank in the Episcopal Church, rally feel towards the people ainong whom and can never be convinced that earthly they dwell, together with the influence of dignities would have added effect to the elopublic opinion, affords a security for the quence of Paul, or to the teachings of Him judicious and careful exercise of the right. who “spake as never man spake." This observation is especially applicable to
ARISTIDES. CONGREGATIONALISM.-REPLY. A most interesting and important debate the discussion are the maze of perplexity now draws to its close; and with mingled into which many of the writers have wanfeelings we summon our energies for a dered, and the direct antagonism of advocates final reply. The most striking features of nominally ranged on the same side. There