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Can any arrogance in the world be conceived greater than this? A writer in a celebrated periodical g thus speaks : — " The position of Professor Jowett has a significance f On this subject the reader may refer to St. Newman has unhappily fallen away from the Church of England, and has led many others into the communion of that Church which has devised the monstrous interpretation, design technology coursework rightly cen- sured by the Essayist, of Gen. He has accepted the teach- ing of that Church, which, mainly on the groundwork of that text h , has lately put forth a new dogma of faith, and anathematizes all who do not believe that new dogma, namely, the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin. This is one of the Romish interpre- tations which Dr. Newman and his followers have now solemnly bound themselves to receive, in opposition to Scripture, Councils, and Fathers of the Church. It is intended design technology coursework to clear away some of tbe misconceptions wbicb have prevented Biblical custom writing essay service students from deriving tbe full advantages to be reaped from tbe sacred records, and to point out what those ad- vantages are. And if it be really true that the Author of this Essay does exercise that dominant influence over the "minds of the rising generation of design technology find someone to write my paper coursework English students and theologians," then it is high time that design technology coursework all who feel a loyal attachment to the Church of England, and who are animated with a generous zeal for the intellectual reputation and for 1 Edinburgh Review, No.
Let us now proceed to examine the probable consequences of this system of Interpretation. In the year 1774 a celebrated German theologian, J. Semler, already mentioned, published at Halle his "Plan for the Liberal Teaching of Christian Doc- trineV Semler had been educated among the Pietists, as they were called, who thought that outward forms and confessions of faith were not of much use for the maintenance of spiritual life, and who disparaged human learning and theological science as of little benefit to vital devotion.
With them religious emo- tions constituted true spirituality. With them fer- vour and enthusiasm were almost everything, but ecclesiastical organization and order were of very little account. They professed a laudable zeal for practi- cal piety and moral virtue, but they did not ground them on the principles of Christian doctrine and on the articles of the Christian faith. They appealed to their own inner consciousness and spiritual illumination for di- rection in these two questions, — What is the Bible?
They separated the Scriptures from the Church, to which the Scrip- k Institutio ad Doctrinam Cliristianam liberaliter cliscendam. Sender, in course of time, came under the influence of the philosophical divines of the school of Wolff, whose theories developed themselves into Kational- ism.
From the Pietists he had brought with him a sanguine confidence in his own opinions, not restrained by the correctives and controls of the public autho- rity and judgment of the universal Church, as de- clared in her formularies and practice.
To quote the language of an English divine, who has drawn an ac- curate portrait of his character 1 , — "He never hesi- tated to desert sober, substantial truth for striking but partial views, subtle error, and ingenious theory. To this quality he added others, which are very frequent ingredients in such a character, — an undoubting esti- mation for all his own speculations, and a rash boldness in bringing them into public view. What Sender was at Halle in the middle of the 1 Hugh James Kose, Discourses, p. A biographical account of Semler has also been given by Tholuck, Verm. Indeed, there is scarcely a single point in the Oxford Essay which was not anti- cipated by Semler a hundred years ago. Semler made his own conscience to be a criterion of Inspiration. He tells us that " whatever he found in Scripture to be conducive to his own buy academic papers good, that he held to be divinely inspired m. His only knowledge of the Inspiration of the Scripture was the " idea which he himself formed of it. Similarly the Essayist assures us that any one who has a tolerable knowledge of Greek may set up for an interpreter of the New Testament. Among these are, at an early period, the hypothesis of the Divinity of J esus, and, somewhat later, the Augustinian doctrine of Original Sin, that of Grace, of Predestination, and various others.
It is deserving of mention, that Semler introduces this whole subject for the purpose of shewing how injuriously pre-existing theories or ideas, or, as he terms them, hypotheses, operate upon the true Interpretation of Scripture. He calls himself a Christian, and lays great stress upon spirituality of feeling. To these passages he ON THE INTERPRETATION OF SCRIPTURE.
But the fact that for many ages, aye, even from the time of the Apostles, the interpre- tation which he rejects had been the one received, he cannot so easily get rid of.
He resorts therefore to the ingenious theory of assigning to the opinions or hypotheses of the early Fathers the origin of the articles of our faith, and supposes that in support of the doctrines thus framed, was invented an interpretation of Scrip- ture which is not the true one, and that a new and more liberal method must henceforth be adopted. But Semler laid little stress on the articles of the Christian Creed. Semler also treats as of little account the interpre- tations of the Old Testament which are given in the Xew z. Semler also assures us that there are errors and contradictions in Scripture b : here likewise he has been followed by the Essayist c.
Semler taught his scholars to treat Holy Scripture as a common book : here likewise we have a parallel in the Essay before us d.