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doctrine ; therefore, they do this some other way. Now there is no other way by which they can do it, but by their writings ; and therefore by their writings they do it: therefore by their writings, and believing of them, we are to be kept from wavering in matters of faith ; therefore the Scriptures of the apostles, and prophets, and evangelists, are our guides ; therefore not the Church of Rome;" Tor, by necessary consequence, any other human authority).
We have another remark to make about the charge that the Protestant doctrine,“ The Bible alone the guide of faith,” leads to Arianism or Socinianism ; namely, that the very doctrines which Mr. Manning, Mr. Keble, and the whole Oxford Tract school are contending for, are very likely to open the way for innumerable heresies; for what certainty is there in human traditions? whereas, the Bible never made any man an Arian or Socinian, though many Arians and Socinians have tried to find their dogmas in its pages. Chillingworth, in reply to the Jesuit Knot, who had used this sophism, says: “Had I a mind to recriminaté, and to charge Papists, as you do Protestants, that they lead men to Socinianism, I could certainly make a much fairer shew of evidence than you have done." He goes on to exhibit what an advantage the Church of Rome had given to heresy, by making tradition and the infallibility of the Church necessary to guide men into right views of the Holy Trinity. Mr. Keble, however, we grieve to say, has taken up this refuted Papistical argument. We will corroborate our statement by the following testimony of another witness, the Rev. T. Butt, in his “ Observations on Mr. Keble's Sermon on Tradition."
“ • The Bible only is the religion of Protestants.' This celebrated axiom of Chillingworth expresses the doctrine of the sixth Article in a compressed form. Mr. Keble, however, deems it highly objectionable, insinuates that the reception of it has a tendency to generate Arianism, and professes his belief that Chillingworth himself was an Arian. I am sorry that he thus declares war against a sentiment which Protestants are in the habit of adopting as their watch-word. His objection bears especial reference to the Catholic doctrine of the most Holy Trinity, which beyond dispute is an essential part of the religion of Protestants. This, we are told, is a precious and sacred fragment of the unwritten teaching,' and 'primitive system.' Again, We are indebted to the Nicene Creed, above all other formulæ, for our sound belief in the proper divinity of the Son of God, and this Creed had its origin not from Scripture, but from Tradi. tion. The full doctrines of the Trinity and the Incarnation,' are among the points of Catholic consent, which are known by Tradition. There is also an illustrati on from Natural Religion introduced, which, if I rightly understand it, places the traditionary evidence of this great doctrine decidedly above the evidence of Scripture. However that may be, the preceding quotations seem to involve the perilous and most unsound assertion, that Holy Scripture does not clearly decide the question agitated between the Orthodox and the Arians. I cannot bring myself to believe that such is Mr. Keble's conviction. But surely it is a conclusion which ought to have been carefully guarded against, if not directly disclaimed, when he ventured to use such hazardous language."
We might shew, by recent experience, that the system espoused by the Oxford Tract writers is, to say the least, very likely to lead its abettors to disparage even that cardinal doctrine of Christianity, the Atonement. Mr. Knox could find no distinct place for it in his system ; and the writers of the Oxford Tracts have of late waxed bold in virtually making it to be a doctrine quite unnecessary to sal. vation; for there is to be reserve in communicating it; the catechumen is not to be initiated in so sublime a mystery; he is to be a good Christian first, and then, as a reward, is to be told of this esoteric doctrine ; whereas there is to be no such reserve in setting forth the views of the writers upon baptism, or the apostolical succession in its popish sense. Now a doctrine thus to be postponed—and, it may be, never taught, as the pupil may die before he is ripe to receive it-cannot be of essential importance. But why do we say of late? Mr. Newman, long ago, in his History of the Arians, spoke in language as strong as his readers were likely then to tolerate. We do not say that he denies the doctrine of the atonement, that is, in a certain sense, not the Protestant sense; but we say that there is nothing in Arianism that practically speaking is likely to disparage it more than the way in which he and his friends speak of it. He is decidedly at issue with St. Paul, who said that he was determined to know nothing among men but Jesus Christ and him crucified; from which doctrine are to be derived the Christian's hopes, encouragements, stimulants to duty, and deep sorrow for sin. If we have misapprehended Mr. Newman's statements, we share the mistake with so many other readers and writers, that we have just ground for saying it arises from the author's obscurity, not the dulness of his readers. The Rev. C. S. Bird, in his very excellent and candid pamphlet, entitled “The Oxford Tract System considered in reference to Reserve in Preaching," speaks, in the following passage, the general feeling of all true Protestants who have the unhappiness to be acquainted with Mr. Newman's writings.
“ I mentioned Mr. Newman's work on the Arians as being at the head of the list in point of time. It may stand very high in point of importance, though it has not attracted much notice. I well remember the exceeding astonishment with which I first read the following passage.
"No one sanction,' says Mr. Newman, (p. 51,).can be adduced from Scripture, whether of precept or example, in behalf of stimulating the affections, e. g. of gratitude or remorse, by means of the Atonement, in order to the conversion of the hearers; on the contrary, it is its uniform method to connect the Gospel with natural religion, and to mark out obedience to the moral law, as the ordinary means of attaining to a Christian faith ; the higher truths, as well as the Eucharist, which is the visible emblem of them, being reserved as the reward and confirmation of habitual piety.' When I first saw this passage, I could scarcely trust the evidence of my sight. The hardihood of the assertion as to the matter of fact, that no one sanction can be adduced,' &c. seemed almost incredible. Could I have read Scripture so ill hitherto ? I had thought that Jesus Christ was the sole foundation on which to build the Christian superstructure. I had imagined that faith led to practice, not practice to faith. Was I to unlearn this ? Was I to put natural religion in the place of Christ as the foundation ? Did not our Lord say, 'I, if I be lifted up, will draw all men unto me?' What could this mean?' Not that it would be the beauty and moral fitness in His teaching, and its correspondence with natural religion, that would draw men ; for this had failed to do so, at the time He spoke ; but His being lifted up,' which was then future_His being crucified for them–His atoning for their transgressions with His innocent blood. We love Him,' says St. Jobn, because he first loved us; that is, our affection is kindled not by a cold admiration of His moral excellence, but by our hearing, and believing what we hear, of the way in which He proved his love to us. Will it be contended that without such affection, outward obedience, obedience to the moral law, is of any value in the sight of God, so far as the individual is concerned ? What strange language is it, that the higher trutbs are the rewards of habitual piety?' Are they not the basis of it? Can there be piety-except in the heathen sense of religio,' mere circumstantial worship, totally independent of what we call piety-without the peculiar doctrines of Christianity?"
We now turn to the question of fact whether Chillingworth was an Arian, Socinian, or anything of the kind. It might be enough to say that there is nothing in his multifarious publications that bears out such a charge; and he must have been one of the most vile and mendacious of men, if he wrote as he did, arguing as an orthodox believer, when he was secretly a Socinian. Bat let us examine into the origin of the accusation; and when we remember who were its originators, we feel grieved to say who are its modern resuscitators. Its inventors were the Romanists, particularly the Jesuits, who, because Chillingworth had left their communion, to diminish the influence of his character and writings, fabricated this charge. It has been a standing calumny against Protestantism upon the part of the Church of Rome, as it is now upon the part of the writers of the Oxford Tracts, that it sets up reason against faith ; and that in appealing only to Scripture, and rejecting the authority of tradition (though it rejects it only as authority, not as testimony), it opens the floodgates to every heresy. Chillingworth himself has ably shewn, in this very matter of Socinianism, how blameably Popish divines had written (as do those of the Oxford Tracts) of the difficulty or impossibility of discovering truth in the word of God; in order to infer the need of authoritative ecclesiastical tradition, which the Oxford writers affirm is “equally " the word of God with the written word. Thus, in answer to his original accuser, the Jesuit Knot (Wilson was his real name; as Perse was Fisher's; for the Jesuits never scrupled to adopt a convenient ulias), he says, in his preface to his great work, “ The religion of Protestants a safe way to salvation," at section 16-19.
“I would shew you that in divers ways the doctors of your church do the principal and proper work of the Socinians for them, undermining the doctrine of the Trinity, by denying it to be supported by those pillars of the faith, which alone are fit and able to support it; I mean Scripture, and the consent of the an. cient doctors.' [He means that they would not give due weight even to ancient testimony in order that they might embrace the necessity of a living authority.] For Scripture, your men deny very plainly and frequently, that this doctrine can be proved by it. . . . . You proclaim to all the world, that if men follow their reason and discourse, they will, if they understand themselves, be led to Soci, nianism. And thus you see with what probable matter I might furnish out and justify any accusation if I should charge you with leading men to Socinianism. Yet I do not conceive that I have ground enough for this odious imputation ; and much less should you have charged Protestants with it, when you confess to abhor and detest it, and who fight against it, not with the broken reeds, and out of the paper fortresses, of an imaginary infallibility, which were only to make sport for their adversaries; but with the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. . . . . Thus Protestants in general, I think, are vindicated from your calumny. I proceed now to do the same service for the divines of the Church of England, whom you question first in point of learning and sufficiency, and then in point of conscience and honesty, as prevaricating in the religion which they profess, and inclining to Popery..... Which scurrilous libel, void of all truth, discretion, and bonesty, what effect it may have wrought, what credit it may have gained, with credulous Papists, who dream what they desire, and believe their own dreams, or with ill-affected, jealous, and weak Protestants, I cannot tell; but one thing I boldly say, that you yourself did never believe it."
It appears abundantly from this passage, that the Jesuit's charge against Chillingworth was that he, being a Protestant, was of necessity in the high road to Socinianism ; the very basis of Protestantism — its appeal to Scripture being opposed to that fides carbonaria, which Rome accounts indispensable. We call this a calumny, whether levelled against Protestants generally, or Chillingworth personally ; but grieved and shocked are we, that, whereas from the day when the calumny was proffered, up to the present time, the friends of the Church of England have treated it as a foul aspersion, and have united in upholding Chillingworth's truly Protestant book as embodying the doctrine of Scripture, the illustrious writer has of late found assailants in his own church, who maintain with bis Romanist calumniators, that to go to the Bible only for our religion is proud “rationalism," and leads to Socinianism and infide'ity.
We would premise, before we say more of Chillingworth personally, that though we deny that he was a Socinian, yet, were the charge substantiated, the case would only stand like that of Blancho White; not a proof that Protestantism leads to Socinianism; but a melancholy proof that the doctrines contended for, whether by Papists, or by those who call themselves“ Apostolicals” in the Anglican Church, are too likely to do so, as soon as a man, seeing the folly of leaning upon ecclesiastical authority, sets out upon the voyage of truth without rudder or compass, and begins to think he must reject all mysteries because he bas been cheated by false ones. Chillingworth returned from the Jesuit col
lege of Douay in 1631 ; his great work was published in 1638, the intervening years being spent in the diligent study and investigation of inspired truth. It is very probable that his mind was often in a state of great perplexity; he was casting off the slough of Popery, and as he began to investigate, having discarded the notion of an infallible living teacher, he was obliged to examine every thing for himself anew ; so that till he had re-learned the articles of the faith from the word of God, it would prove nothing against his great Protestant maxim if he vacillated, especially as his chief advisers were Laud and Sheldon ; and it is chiefly upon the strength of two letters written during this period, that the charge is maintained; though, as we shall shew, the letters do not prove the truth of the charge, and would never have been urged for that purpose, had it not been to render plausible the doctrine that Protestantism leads to Socivianism.
We do not know that we can give the facts of the case in a shorter space than Mr. Butt has done ; we will therefore quote his statement, adding to it what appears to us requisite.
.“ Des Maizeaux, in his Life of Chillingworth, [published in 1725] p. 269, quotes Bishop Hoadley as follows :- One of Chillingworth's scruples was about the Athanasian Creed ; not only the damnatory clauses, but the doctrine itself contained in it, to which he could not submit. I have seen two letters under his own hand; one, if not both, to Dr. Sheldon, his great friend. In one he particularly explains some of his sentiments entirely different from the orthodox; and endeavours to support them by the earliest antiquity. In the other, he blesses God that no allurement, no offer of preferment, no importunity of his best friends, could prevail upon him to make his conscience uneasy by subscribing the Articles; the doing of which, he thinks, would have rendered his whole life uncomfortable.'
“Now preferment was subsequently conferred upon him; and hence Bishop Hoadley erroneously concludes, that it was given him by special favour without subscription. Des Maizeaux confutes this gratuitous supposition by producing the document of the church of Sarum, which contains his subscription before his admission to the Chancellorship.
“But let us apply to the letters themselves, that we may ascertain exactly what these scruples were. The second letter only was addressed to Dr. Sheldon, and was written in 1635, three years previously to his subscription. It is well worth perusal, as shewing the working of an honest and pious heart. He sees in full force the strong inducements to comply, yet rejoices in having gained the victory over that only enemy that could hurt him, that is, himself. May we not then charitably conclude, that his scruples were subsequently overcome by sound argument, and that he did not sell his soul for gain ?
“ There are two points of determined objection specified in the letter. One is, that to say the fourth commandment is a law of God appertaining to Christians is false and unlawful; the other, that the damning sentences in St. Athanasius's Creed are most false, and also in an high degree presumptuous and schismatical.'
“ There is no trace in this letter of scruples about the doctrine of the Trinity. We must therefore confine ourselves to the other letter, written to some unknown friend—both date and direction are lost. Des Maizeaux conjectures that it was written in 1634, three years before the publication of his great work. We have a disadvantage in not possessing the letter to which it is a reply. Des Maizeaux thinks he was asked, What judgment might be made of Arianism from the sense of antiquity? Chillingworth produces evidence that many of the Fathers, and an early council against the Samosatenians, expressed themselves in such a manner--that whosoever shall freely and impartially consider of this thing shall not chuse but confess, or at least be very inclinable to believe, that the doctrine of Arrius is either a truth, or at least no damnable heresy.' But the carrier stays for my letter, and I have no more time,' &c.
“The sentence is undoubtedly so worded as to convey his own approbation of Arianism to an hasty reader. But as Dr. Maizeaux observes, the letter merely conveys Chillingworth's judgment, that if this controversy were to be decided by the authority of the ancient Fathers, Arianism would carry the day. He writes inaccurately when hurrying to conclude a letter for which the messenger waited. How is it possible that the deliberate judgment of one, whose giant strength was employed in confuting those who built orthodoxy on the opinions of Fathers and decisions of councils, should waive the determination of such a vital question on scriptural grounds that he should bow his neck to authorities, which at the same time he utterly repudiated as lords over his faith? He shews how much bad been said by antiquity in favour of Arianism.. Is he therefore an Arian? •Councils against Councils,' as Mr. Keble quotes him, some Fathers against others, the same Fathers against themselves—in a word, there is no suffi. cient certainty but of Scripture for any considering man to build upon.'
“That this is a fair and reasonable view of Chillingworth's meaning in that single unfortunate sentence, for which his character as an orthodox believer and as an honest man is condemned, may be demonstrated by a reference to the 16th, 17th, and 18th sections of the Preface of his great work. He there attacks the Romanists as doing the work of the Socinians for them, undermining the doctrine of the Trinity, by denying it to be supported by those pillars of faith, which alone are fit and able to support it-I mean Scripture and the consent of the ancient doctors. For Scripture, your men deny very plainly and frequently that this doctrine can be proved by it. And then for the consent of the ancients: that that also delivers it not, by whom are we taught but by Papists only?'
• He proves this assertion by numerous instances, shewing that his opponents ' speak dangerously' to this purpose. From a comparison of this passage with the anonymous letter, I infer that the same train of argument was presented to his mind in both cases. Yet he would be an extraordinary reasoner, who asserted from the passage in the Preface that Chillingworth thought the Romanists had done good service to the Truth by this ostentatious disclosure of the allies of Arianism,
“ At p. 344 there is, no doubt, an allusion to this subject. The account of Chillingworth's last days is equally melancholy and interesting. By the capture of Arundel Castle he fell into the hands of Parliamentarians, and his old opponent Mr. Cheynell, had an opportunity of exercising at once his bigotry and his charity. Care is taken of Chillingworth's sick body, while his sinking spirit is tormented with questions on political and religious matters. Cheynell taxes him with Socinianism, because when interrogated' whether he conceived that a man living and dying a Turk, Papist, or Socinian, could be saved ? all the answer to be gained from him was, that he did not absolve them, and would not condemn them.' In Cheynell's absence, an anonymous person, an officer of the garrison, as is testified by the Apothecary, told Chillingworth that there went abroad some hard opinions that he had of Jesus Christ, and he wished him to deal candidly and plainly to the world in that point. He answered, for those things he was settled, and resolved, and therefore did not desire to be further troubled.' Of this twice filtered report of his dying words all that need be said is that being uttered at such a time, and to such questioners, he must be as hard-hearted as these Puritan zealots who infers from it aught to his disadvautage."
Mr. Butt justly states that there is nothing in the first letter which proves any heterodoxy with respect to the Trinity. His opinion respecting the fourth commandment, which was that of Laud and many other divines--and which Laud's chaplain, Heylin, wrote a book to vindicate-bas nothing to do with the question. Nor was his scruple as to the condemnatory clauses in the Athanasian creed any proof that he did not believe the divinity of Christ; for many true believers have objected (though we think without reason) to the Athanasian creed as supposing its condemnatory clauses to refer to every particular of illustration in that documeut; and not merely to the general declarations respecte ing the Trinity
With regard to the other letter, Mr. Butt has anticipated us in saying that he was very probably only stating what he has done often in his works, that the fathers are so vague, and often unscriptural and contradictory, in their writings, that we must look the word of God for truth, and that he would not trust even so clear a matter as the doctrine of the Trinity to human testimony. Chillingworth wanted a reason for all that he believed, and the highest of all reasons is that God has spoken ; but to believe merely because a church boast