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This objection is anticipated by the writer, and is disposed of, unless we misunder- stand him, by the very extraordinary hypothesis that each individual may perhaps live more than once upon the earth, and come back again to acquire new lights on divine truth by a fresh pilgrimage in a more advanced stage of thought. But, again, we would not have the reader trust our own representa- tion of the meaning : — " Go thine inscrutable way, Eternal Providence! Only let me not despair in Thee because of this inscrutableness. Let me not despair in Thee, even if Thy steps appear to me to be going back.
It is not true that the shortest line is always straight.
And what if it were as good as proved that the vast slow wheel, which brings mankind nearer to this perfection, is only put in motion by smaller, swifter wheels, each of which contri- butes its own individual unit thereto? The very same way by which the race reaches its perfection, must every individual man — one sooner, an- other later — have travelled over. Can he have been, in one and the self- same life, a sensual Jew and a spiritual Christian? But ichy should not every individual man have existed more than once upon this world? Because the human understanding, before the so- phistries of the Schools had dissipated and debilitated it, lighted upon it at once? Do I bring away so much from once, that there is nothing to repay the trouble of coming back? Or, because I forget that I have been here already?
The recollection of my former condition would per- mit me to make only a bad use of the present.
And that which even I must forget now, is that necessarily forgotten for ever? To be sure, this has been said a thousand times before in sermons and religious books.
But because it is a very old idea, is it therefore a false one? Why should we doubt that it will recognise these truths m that other land beyond the grave? But whether ive can see into the necessity for the Atonement, or into the essential constitution of the divine nature, while we are in the bod? Humours hang about our reason, and a cloudy atmosphere, which intercepts and refracts the rays of divine truth.
But we entirely believe that a better condition of the intellect is in store for us, when we shall see no longer "in a mirror enigmatically," but face to face, and know no longer partially, but " as we are known. This we coursework resources suspect (from our very narrow acquaintance with it) to be the genius of German theology, — three or four diamonds in a heap of rubbish, several beautiful and valuable thoughts lying hid in a mass of writing and a tangle of talk.
Of the latter fault, however, the little treatise of Lessing now before us is cer- tainly not guilty. It is (even severely) terse, and may be read through in a quarter of an hour. And we much regret that he has confounded with this a line of thought THE EDUCATION OF THE WORLD.
We do not fear the storm with all its bluster, even though it seems that some of the fundamental articles of faith, nay, the principle of theism itself, is perilled. Persuaded as we are that our own Church is the pal- ladium both of Scriptural truth and Apostolic order, we believe that buy research papers online cheap the special providence of God watches over her, and that Christ Himself is in the tempest- tossed bark. He can and will overrule this mass of error and contradiction for good. Indeed, may it not be said that, except through the antagonism of opposing error, truth can never be thoroughly appre- ciated or developed in its full proportions in the human mind? Truth learned by rote, as children learn the Catechism, buy research papers online cheap is not appreciated, nor even understood. But truth, which has been beset round about by heresies, and perplexed by grave question- ings, and which at length has emerged, with its 54 THE EDUCATION OF THE WORLD. Only let us never for a moment drop the clue to all religious truth which the Word of God lends to us. Holding fast to it, we shall find our way with safety and ease through every labyrinth, however dark and intricate, and shall emerge into that sunlight of " clear thought" on subjects of religion, which Dr. Temple tells us is " valuable above all things, excepting only godliness. JT will scarcely be denied by any man buy research papers online cheap of pure and elevated mind, that the highest object to which our faculties can be directed is the attainment of religious truth. I think, however, that it will also be gene- rally conceded, that these questions in the present day are almost limited to the enquiry into the evidence for the truth of the Bible and the true principles on which it ought to be interpreted.
If that book is not derived from direct revelation, no other source of revelation will create much discussion among the men of our own age and nation. Of these two great questions, — the truth of the Bible and its interpretation, — it is difficult to say which is the most important. Kay, the very means employed in the investigation of the true meaning of Scripture by those who have had any success in interpreting it, is worthy the atten- tion of all who believe in its divine origin. It is, therefore, always a source of gratification to learn any particulars concerning the lives of men who have devoted themselves entirely to the study of Scripture, or have attained to distinction by writings connected with sacred studies.