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sentiment which he afterwards more fully and clearly explained in the words which follow: "And hath commanded His Sacrament to be had in continual use, to put them in mind of mercy laid up for them in Christ's blood, and to witness and testify it unto them, and to be the seal thereof. For the Sacrament doth much more vehemently print lively the faith, and make it sink down into the heart, than do bare wards only; as a man is more sure of that he heareth, seeth, feeleth, smelleth and tasteth, than that he heareth only."*
In like manner, with regard to Holy Orders, we can readily understand that Tyndale's rejection of Orders as a Sacrament, and of the Christian Ministry as a sacrificing priesthood, should be regarded by Mr. Blunt as au error as grievous as his rejection of the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist as a propitiatory offering for the living and the dead. Had it been Mr. Blunt's design, however, to represent Tyndale's views fairly and impartially, he would, instead of quoting only words which might seem to exclude the imposition of hands in ordination, have referred his readers to those which immediately precede the passage which he selects for condemnation, in which Tyndale not only refers to the imposition of hands in the case of the "six deacons," but further expresses his opinion, that "it is not to be doubted but that the Apostles, after their common manner, prayed for him (Matthias) that God would give him grace to minister his office truly; and put their hands on him, and exhorted him, and gave him charge to be diligent and faithful; and then he was as great as the best."f
(To be continued.)
PEROWNE'S HULSEAN LECTURES.
Immortality. Four Sermons preached before the University of Cambridge; being tlie Hulsean Lectures for 1869. By J. J. 8. Perowne, B.D. Deighton, Bell, §• Co.
Cambridge Hulsean Lecturers have had to learn the art of compressing what they want to say into a small compass. The office was at one time of considerable pecuniary value, and its comparative importance was great, as the lecturer held his office for several years, and gave some twenty lectures during the year. Dr. Mill's work on Pantheism is one of the fruits of this golden period. But successive inroads have been made, both
• Tyndale's Doctrinal Treatises, Parker Soc. Ed., p. 360. f Ibid., p. 269.
on the stipend and the time allotted to the lecturer, until he is now reduced to the small allowance of four lectures, and would not therefore, to the outward eye, be distinguishable from one of the usual special preachers at St. Mary's.
We think this contraction is a subject of regret. Considering the diffiiseness naturally expected in a sermon, it is scarcely possible to select a subject of any peculiar importance or interest to which real justice could be done in four discourses; and it is well that the University should have amongst its annual preachers, one at least who is not thus hampered in his choice of subjects. We think that Mr. Perowne, like any one else who had much to say, must have keenly felt the impossibility of treating the selected subject so fully as he would have wished. That subject is Immortality; one of those questions which, as he says, are ever old, and yet ever new.
A subject like this naturally divides itself into several branches; we will briefly indicate some of the principal of these branches, and then comment upon Mr. Perowne's treatment of them. There is, then, first the purely historical question,—What have been, as a matter of fact, the views of mankind, from the earliest recorded times, on this subject? Have they generally accepted, without Revelation, the doctrine of a life after death; and if so, in what special form, and with what degree of conviction? Secondly, as a continuation of this, what are the views of men upon the subject at the present day, now that the light of Revelation has so clearly shone, that at least we have not got to originate the conception of immortality? ToChristians, the doctrine is settled decisively in the affirmative; but many reject Christianity, or at least shrink from appealing to its authority in support of such a doctrine: do they therefore reject the doctrine of immortality? In a word, what solutions of the problem have been proposed by the various modern Bystems of philosophy? Thirdly, there is the ratiocinative or evidentiary aspect of the question; what are the various arguments by which such a doctrine can be proved or supported? What is their relative force, and their mutual connection? Fourthly, the descriptive or expository view, as we may term it, for want of a better expression. What does a future life imply; can we know anything about its nature and purpose, and the mode in which it will be spent. Connected with this is of course the doctrine of everlasting punishment. On all these questions Mr. Perowne has touched, but his lectures are mainly devoted to the discussion of the first and second.
The first lecture is devoted to the various modern attempts to answer the question, Whether we are to live after death or not; the attempts, we mean, of Philosophy, which rejects the aid of Revelation. These attempts he divides into three, those re
Vol. 68.—No. 378. 3 H
spectively of Materialism, Pantheism, and Spiritualism. The reply of Materialism is simple aud abrupt, that there is no future life. It is the answer which the poet has put into the mouth of mere Nature :—
"Thou makest thine appeal to me, I bring to life, I bring to death, The spirit doth but mean the breath; I know no more." "This is all that there is in man, the material elements of which the body is composed, and the forces which have helped to build up that body. What then, according to this theory, is the soul? It
is an organic function of the body, whose seat is in the brain
In short, the thesis of materialism is this, that beyond matter and the laws of matter there is nothing; and that, consequently, mechanics, chemistry, and physiology suffice to explain all phenomena, the production of thought as well as the production of the flame of a candle, the sentiments of the human heart as well as the colour and weight of a stone or a tree." (p. 8.)
The obvious and necessary conclusion from such a doctrine, is that when the organized body decays after death, the spirit, as we call it, which is nothing more than a consequence of that organization, ceases to have any further existence. With an excess which seems at first sight strange, though it is not unnatural, those who have begun by repudiating the doctrine, go on to denounce it and express their abhorrence of it. Thus we have the assertion of Biichner (the principal modern exponent of Materialism in Germany) that he would not for an instant hesitate to prefer everlasting annihilation to everlasting life. An assertion with which we may couple that of Strauss, that the last enemy from whom man is to be delivered, is the belief of his own immortality.
We are not aware that this system of Materialism has any advocates of much weight in our own country, though some rather ambiguous expressions, which Mr. Perowne quotes from Professor Huxley, in his preface, approach dangerously near to it. Certainly some of the prominent leaders of that sensationalist philosophy, which would be thought most likely to tend that way, have denounced such inferences as altogether fallacious. Mr. Mill, for instance, after classing among fallacies the attempts to resolve sensation into motion, states of consciousness into states of the nervous system, and vital phenomena into mechanical or chemical processes, remarks as follows :— "Where our consciousness recognizes between two phenomena an inherent distinction,—where we are sensible of a difference which is not merely one of degree, and feel that no adding one of the phenomena to itself would produce the other,—any theory which attempts to bring either under the laws of the other ■must be false." As Mr. Perowne implies, the danger of this system is not so much in the actual arguments it offers,—for it is blind to one whole class of facts,—as in the spirit which it indirectly inspires. But although it may be impossible to disprove a future life, equal mischief is of course effected, when all but the present life is ignored and forgotten.
The second solution is that of Pantheism, which assures us of the immortality, if such it may be called, of the soul, by its absorption into God; or rather—since there is no God left in our sense of the term—into the Universal Principle. Those who have been accustomed to regard Pantheism as being merely a system with which foreign missionaries must prepare to grapple in India and elsewhere, may be surprised to hear that it is the creed of a numerous body of philosophers on the Continent. Mr. Perowne points out the invidious nature of this system, in the fact of its securing immortality to the elite alone of mankind, to those only who have sufficient intellectual and moral power to attain to a sense of immortality. "I can seo no reason," says one of its advocates, "why a Papuan should bo immortal." The real reason, we apprehend, why this system has never had the slightest currency amongst ourselves, is its entire opposition to that fierce sense of individuality which an active life seldom fails to engender. The Englishman would rather come to an end altogether, than exist, even for ever, like the leaf of some gigantic vegetable. The rhapsodies of Mr. Emerson, of Boston, U.S., represent almost the only AngloSaxon utterances on this subject which we can call to mind at the present moment.
There remains the system of Spiritualism—the system, namely, which attempts to secure the Christian's hope of a really personal immortality, without admitting the Christian's foundation for it. Mr. Francis Newman is one of the prominent apostles of this creed. As the passages devoted to the consideration of this doctrine are mainly occupied with the arguments which tho Spiritualist advances, we will leave them to the sequel, when we propose to give a sketch of the principal arguments for immortality which have found favour at different times.
The next branch of the subject, and one which is tolerably fully treated by Mr. Perowne, is the historical one, viz., what have been, as a matter of fact, the beliefs which different nations have entertained on the subject of a future life? The question is not only interesting in itself, but extremely valuable as affording the only trustworthy means for appreciating the value of the common arguments for immortality. These arguments, when advanced now by Christians, are, of course, used in support of a conclusion which really rests on other grounds. But it is as impossible to estimate correctly the force of an argument on which wo do not actually rely, as it is to know the strength of a rope on which there is no strain. The speculators of Greece and Rome had no direct revelation on the subject; in their case, therefore, we have some means of judging what those arguments are worth as weapons, which most of us have ceased to regard except as ornaments.
The second and third lectures are respectively occupied with the hopes of the Gentile and the Jew, and are, to our minds, the most interesting in the book. The progressive character of the belief in immortality is very clearly marked in the following paragraph:—
"Its first and simplest expression has been in the respect shown for the dead, in the interment, in the treasuring of the ashes in the urn, in the tomb, however simple and unadorned. Its first attempt to conceive of another life has been by assigning to the soul a form, and by imagining that the pursuits and occupations of the next world were a mere continuation of the pursuits and occupations of the present world. In a later stage of culture, when the moral problems of life have begun to press more heavily, and the moral sense has been more keenly exercised, we see men not content with the bare bebef in a future existence, but picturing it to themselves as the great theatre of Divine righteousness, as a state in which the final severance shall be made between the good and the wicked, as •everlasting joy to the one and everlasting confusion to the other. And, finally, as marking a yet higher degree of the reflective analysis, or of the Divine education, we find a belief, more or less clearly implied, that the body itself shall be redeemed from corruption, and raised to share with the spirit an endless and incorruptible life." (p. 35.)
Of these stages, the earliest record, at least from amongst people who had attained any considerable stage of civilization, is found among the Egyptians. Mr. Perowne's description of this is so interesting that we cannot forbear from quoting it at some length :—
"What is the language of the most ancient documents to which we can appeal? We shall find it, as we might anticipate, not in a formal treatise, but in a popular expression, and, strange to say, in an Egyptian romance. There is in the British Museum an old papyrus, brown and crumbling, covered with mysterious characters, traced two-and-thirty centuries ago by the hand of the scribe Annana. He was, in all probability, a contemporary of Moses, and the story which he has written, and which has recently been deciphered, bears in some particulars a curious resemblance to the history of Joseph as recorded in Genesis. It is full of interest, both from its many points of contact with the rites and traditions of other countries, and also from the singular light it throws on the manners and customs and beliefs of the ancient Egyptians. But the special interest for our present purpose bes in the way in which throughout it implies a belief, not only in the transmigration of Suuih, but also in the separate existence of the soul from the