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concerned with, is to show that the doctrine which he impugns is the doctrine of the Atonement as held by the Christian body throughout the world, and supposed and taken for granted by divines in their defences and explanations of it. Indeed, Mr. Maurice almost admits this himself, for he admits it to be the doctrine in defence of which Archbishop Magee wrote his book on the Scriptural Doctrine of the Atonement;' and he allows that both parties in the Church accept the doctrine defended in that book.

Men of the Evangelical school, who did not like Archbishop Magee's book, because they found nothing in it which responded to the witness of their hearts, yet accepted it on the poor calculation that it was a learned book, and might defend what they were pleased to call the outworks of the faith. Men of the Patristic school, who knew how little it accorded with the divinity they most admired, yet argued œconomically, that it might serve the purposes of such an age as ours is, and might confute objectors who did not deserve to be acquainted with any higher truth. I acknowledge the dishonesty and faithlessness of both decisions; I feel most deeply the mischiefs which have followed from both; but I see how much there was to make them plausible. I believe it is only a peculiar discipline, and some very painful experience, which has led me to abandon them, and to say boldly, I must give up Archbishop Magee, for I am determined to keep that which makes the Atonement precious to my heart and conscience; to keep the theology of the Creeds and the Bible.'-Ibid. pp. 148, 149.


Whatever reasons, then, he may give for their respective approvals, the fact is admitted that men of the Evangelical school, and men of the Patristic school,-that is to say, the whole of the Church,-accept that doctrine of the Atonement which Archbishop Magee defends; while he has been led by 'painful experience to say boldly, I must give up Archbishop Magee.'

The arguments in apparent deference to which the received doctrine of the Atonement is thus rejected, are the ordinary arguments of Sceptics and Deists, which we meet with in the controversial treatises of divines who have undertaken the defence of the doctrine of the Atonement. There is the argument drawn from the Divine benevolence, that it is unworthy of the Divine nature to suppose that God does not forgive sin simply upon repentance, without the condition of atonement and mediation. There is the argument drawn from the Divine justice, which, it is supposed, is contradicted by making an innocent man suffer for a guilty one. There is an argument against all punishment, as being a sort of vengeance. Our first remark on these arguments is, that it would have been more satisfactory if Mr. Maurice had distinctly stated how far he agreed with them and how far he did not. As it is, he puts forth certain arguments with a great appearance of sympathy; he accepts the result to which those arguments lead, in the minds of the

parties whom he represents; and he puts forward for this result no other arguments as his own in their stead. We do not say that these are, under such circumstances, to be regarded as Mr. Maurice's own arguments; but this we must say, that for a Professor of Theology in a Church of England College to treat with the greatest apparent sympathy and respect a class of arguments which are known as the common arguments of Sceptics and Deists, without even stating dissent from them, or giving his readers any mark by which to separate the sentiments of the represented parties from those of their mouth-piece, is, if it is not an appropriation of those arguments, an inattention to what was due to his position as a Theological Professor in the Church of England.

Our next remark is, that as the Essay advances this ambiguity is somewhat lessened-to the satisfaction of the reader so far as he wants to know what Mr. Maurice's own arguments are-to his grief inasmuch as he finds that Mr. Maurice's own arguments are but too like in character those of which he was the mouth-piece. He says,―

'What we have a right to insist on is, that no notion or theory shall be allowed to interfere with this fundamental maxim, that if any one, by any means, leads us to suppose that Christ did not simply submit to the will of His Father, and carry it out, but sought to move it or change it, he shall be held to have departed from the faith once delivered to the saints.'-Ibid. p. 144.

Again :

The Scripture says, "The Lamb of God taketh away the Sin of the world." All orthodox teachers repeat the lesson. They say Christ came to deliver sinners from sin. This is what the sinner asks for. Have we a right to call ourselves scriptural or orthodox, if we change the words, and put "penalty of sin " for "sin;" if we suppose that Christ destroyed the connexion between sin and death-the one being the necessary wages of the other-for the sake of benefiting any individual man whatever? If He had, would He have magnified the Law and made it honourable? Would He not have destroyed that which He came to fulfil? Those who say the law must execute itself,-it must have its penalty-should remember their own words How does it execute itself if a person, against whom it is not directed, interposes to bear its punishment?-Ibid. p. 146.

These are arguments which Mr. Maurice himself brings against the Atonement as effecting a delivery from a sentence of punishment which would otherwise have been executed. He says first that to suppose this is to suppose that Christ sought to move and change the Father's will; and secondly, to suppose that Christ destroyed the connexion between sin and death, and so violated, instead of fulfilling, the law. Both these are rationalistic arguments. A change in the will of God, such as is supposed in the doctrine of the. Atonement, is of course a stery. We do not mean to say that God's will is changed e sense in which a human will is; that would be repugnant

to our idea of the Divine Nature. We only use such language as a way of expressing some act of the Deity, which cannot really be expressed. Not to allow such modes of expression as these is rationalism; because it is a clear limiting of the truths of religion to such truths as we can understand. The same answer may be made to the argument that Christ did not destroy the connexion between sin and death. Let it be saidwhich is not true-that our natural idea of justice demands that real guilt should be punished, just as it demands that real virtue should be rewarded; while the doctrine of the Atonement represents real guilt as let off its just punishment. Still this is only a mode of speaking. It is the expression of a mystery to which our thoughts cannot reach, and which is only expressed in this language, because there is no language by which it can be truly and adequately expressed.


We have been viewing Mr. Maurice as an assailant, and we find him not very tender about the arguments he uses. seems to be quocunque modo rem. He appears to regard established forms of belief as things to be knocked down; as so many incrustations, harsh and artificial, which surround the essential truth, and exclude the mind from access to it. But after knocking down the established formula, when he comes to give his own, we find that it does not substantially so much differ from the established one. Mr. Maurice, we find then, is no rationalist, though he could use rationalist arguments before. It makes all the difference in this respect, whether he is the destroyer or the constructor. His own edifice is sacred, and no rationalist even wishes to touch it. He has found a formula which is open to none of the objections to which the established one was, while it does not gain this security by any concession; which satisfies reason much more, while it exercises faith quite as much. After laying down various principles, he concludes,―


Supposing all these principles gathered together; supposing the Father's will to be a will to all good; the Son of God, being one with Him, and Lord of man, to obey and fulfil in our flesh that will by entering into the lowest condition into which men had fallen through their sin ;-supposing this Man to be, for this reason, an object of continual complacency to His Father, and that complacency to be fully drawn out by the Death of the Cross; is not this, in the highest sense, Atonement? Is not the true, sinless root of Humanity revealed; is not God in Him reconciled to man? May not that reconciliation be proclaimed as a Gospel to all men?'Ibid. p. 147.

If this passage means, what it appears to do, that the life and death of our Lord, regarded as one sacrifice, are perfectly pleasing and acceptable to the Father, and that for the sake of that life and death He is reconciled to or forgives the sins of man, we must confess we do not see the great difference between


Mr. Maurice's doctrine and that which he has been so strongly impugning; nor can we see exactly the reason why this Essay has been written. This Essay is written to show that the ordinary idea of the doctrine of the Atonement, the idea, viz. that our Lord has delivered His creatures from their Father's determination to execute His wrath upon them'-the idea of satisfaction to offended Sovereignty'-is erroneous, and contrary to our fundamental notions of the Divine Nature; he has declared his sympathy with the objections of Socinians to this doctrine, and made common cause with them against it. But if his own formula to express the Atonement is to bear its natural meaning, what does it amount to but to this very doctrine? It supposes God to be offended with man, and asserts His wrath to be appeased and removed by Christ's life and death. God is reconciled' to man in consequence of His delight in the Life and Death of the Incarnate Son. Does Mr. Maurice imagine that he has satisfied the scruples of Socinians against the doctrine of the Atonement, by the substitution of such a formula as this for the one he impugns? If he does, with all deference to his knowledge of Socinian grounds of scruple, we cannot but think him mistaken as to what the ground of scruple in the minds of Socinians to the doctrine of the Atonement really is. This ground of scruple is a general one against the vicarious principle in moral and divine things. They do not see in reason, why one being's goodness should make any difference in the Divine regards towards another being; why God, being offended with man on account of his own acts, should be reconciled with him on account of Christ's? But Mr. Maurice's formula acknowledges the vicarious principle, as much as the established one does. His language is, that God, in consequence of His delight in the obedient, is reconciled to the disobedient. Nor does he avoid the vicarious principle implied in this language, by speaking of our Lord as the sinless root of humanity;' as if man were pardoned in consequence of something within himself, and not external to him. For the Socinian will say, 'What is this mysticsm? 'do not understand it: it is contrary to my common sense to regard one man as the root of another. Every man is his own root, and must rise upon the basis of his individuality.' He will see that this language only expresses the vicarious principle under another form.

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We shall go now to the subject, which, though occupying but a small space in these Essays, has furnished the principal charge against Mr. Maurice, has filled the correspondence between him and Dr. Jelf, and has supplied the avowed ground for the Professor's dismissal from his office-we mean, the subject of eternal punishments. We enter on such a question

with great reluctance, but as one already agitated, brought into public discussion, and obtruded upon the attention of the whole world, we cannot avoid noticing it; though we see, as clearly as any one, the evil of bringing so deep and mysterious a doctrine into the common field, and subjecting it to ordinary criticism; and cannot therefore but express our deep regret that Mr. Maurice should have thought it necessary to bring it forward, and excite a controversy about it. We agree with Dr. Jelf in saying, that there does not appear to be any general disposition in the present day to use this doctrine uncharitably. The Church preaches the doctrine which Holy Scripture has given to her, that the finally impénitent will be eternally punished; but who are the finally impenitent, she does not profess to know, and she warns her children against any other use of the doctrine than such as is edifying to themselves, and sharpens the wholesome principle of fear, as regards their own salvation.

Mr. Maurice's declarations of opinion on this subject are such as prevent, we confess, any surprise at the step which the Council of King's College has taken. The Church of England allows, it is true, considerable latitude to her members, and even to her teachers, in their mode of holding and expressing various important truths. Such a liberty nobody would wish to destroy; but there are, though not very clearly defined, certain recognised limits to this liberty. It is felt when a man has transgressed these, has violated truths which the general body holds to be sacred, and has departed from the recognised ground and standard of the Church. The results connected with such a question as the present, too, come home with peculiar and alarming force to men's minds; the connexion between error of doctrine and of practice is more immediate and more visible in the case of this doctrine, than in that of some others as near to the foundation of the faith. Nor could the Council be expected to regard with any other feelings than those of the deepest alarm, the teaching of a professor, who inculcated upon a rising generation of clergy Preachers and expounders of Scripture, from which future congregations were to receive Christian instruction, an interpretation of Scripture which wholly unsettled, if it did not overthrow, the powerful sanctions of religion contained in the doctrine of eternal punishment.

The objections ordinarily made to the doctrine of the eternity of future punishments, are made upon what-to use the word in a somewhat large and mixed sense-we may call a moral ground; that is to say, upon the ground of the repugnancy of such a doctrine to the Divine Attributes. It is urged that eternal punishment is contrary to the Divine Love. Or if that objection is seen not to be valid, inasmuch as the Divine Love

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