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general argument from analogy against such a conception, refer to those agencies influencing living beings, which have been recognised for centuries as implying some supersensuous relation to external nature. It would be unwise to allow the extravagances of animal magnetism to prevent us from recognising the indications which several of its phenomena afford, of perceptions of outward things not easily referable to the operation of any of the known senses. Nevertheless, that so-called, and as yet questionable science, has, for a season at least, fallen into the hands of those with whom the gratification of wonder is a much greater object than the discovery of truth, and we fear to build much upon it. We can find, in another and quite unexceptionable quarter, a substantial foundation on which to assert the probability of life being manifested very differently in other spheres than it is in our own globe. We refer to the assurance which the New Testament gives us, that our human spirits are destined to occupy bodies altogether unlike our present ones.
From the remarkable way in which the Apostle Paul likens the natural body' to a seed which is to be sown, and grow up a spiritual body,' one is led to believe that the immortal future tabernacle is to bear the same relation of difference, and yet of derivation to the present mortal one which a tree does to a seed. The one will be as unlike the other as the oak is unlike the acorn, though but in a sense the expansion of it.
Whether this be the doctrine or not which the Apostle teaches, it is at least certain, that he announces that a great and inconceivable alteration is to come over our bodies. Doubtless, our spirits are to be changed also, but more, as it seems, in the way of intensification of faculties, desires, passions, and affections-on the one hand, good, on the other, evil—which have been exercised or experienced, in their fainter manifestations, in the present state of existence, than by the introduction of positively new elements into our intellectual and moral being. We do not urge this point; it is enough if it be acknowledged to be a Scripture doctrine, that human spirits, reminiscent of their past history, and conscious of their identity, are, however otherwise changed, to occupy bodies totally unlike our present ones. If, however, it be supposed that the spiritual' occupants of our future tabernacles are to differ totally from us, it only adds to the force of the argument, as it implies the greater diversity as to the manner in which being may manifest itself. It is part, then, of the scheme of God's universe, that spirits clothed in non-earthly bodies shall dwell in it. It is idle, therefore, to say that terrestrial life is certainly the probable
sidereal one, since it is not the only existing, or at least the only contemplated mode of being. In looking at the stars as habitations of living creatures, we have at least two unlike examples of the way in which mind and matter admit of association to choose from, as patterns of what astral life may be. But the further lesson is surely taught us, that there may exist other manifestations of life than only these two. For, the spell of simplicity once broken by a single variation, we know not how many more to expect, whilst the conclusion is not to be resisted, that other variations there will be. The same Apostle who dwells on the resurrection, tells us, in reference to the happy dead, that 'eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.' They are not only, therefore, to have bodily organs different from ours, but these are to be gratified by sights which our eyes have not witnessed, by sounds to which our ears have never listened, and by a perception of phenomena inconceivable by us. There are here indicated the two great elements of variety to which we have already referred; a theatre of existence totally unlike the present one, and organs of relation to it different from those of terrestrial beings.
The argument might be greatly extended, but we cannot attempt here an exhaustive discussion of the subject. The sum of the whole discussion is this :--Astronomy declares that there are unlike theatres of existence in the heavens, suns, moons, and planets; Chemistry demonstrates that different kinds of construction, that of the earth, and those of the meteoric stones, prevail through space; Physiology contemplates the possibility of a non-terrestrial life unfolding itself in the stars; and the Bible reveals to us, that there is an immortal heavenly, as well as a mortal earthly life.
The consideration of all this leaves no place for the thought, that the tide of life which ebbs and flows through the universe, is but the undulation of so many streamlets identical with that which bathes the shores of our globe. In our Father's house are many mansions, and the Great Shepherd watches over countless flocks, and has other sheep which are not of this fold.
Art. III. On the Work of the Spirit. The Congregational Lecture
for 1849. By W. H. STOWELL. 8vo, pp. 500. Jackson and
Walford, London. THERE are in systems of belief, no less than in systems of life, certain parts more intimate and essential, as conditions of vitality, than others. Whilst these are safe, other portions may pretty much be left to themselves; and if these are endangered, no care can long preserve what remains. In Theology, it will not be denied, that there are such conditions of the integrity, life, and worth of the whole. Call these parts of the system fundamental,' essentials of Christianity,' or what you will, such essentials there must be, and that not by factitious preference, determining that such should be essential, but by the simple law of relations, of truth to truth. If one position cannot be an antecedent and consequent to another and the sameif some propositions must be shown true, before others can be entertained-evidently the earlier ones are not fundamental by chance, but logically, and in the nature of things. Such would be our brief appeal to those who decry systems, and the insisting on certain doctrines as fundamental. If truths are related, and their dependence can be discerned and exhibited, this exhibition must be a system, however broken and incomplete at certain points; and the relation of some few to the remaining ones must be displayed as fundamental. Such truths are not a co-ordinate series—not fragments, scattered on the same level -they are a building, and portions constitute the foundationor, to recur to our former allusion, are vital organs of the whole. Yet the tendency of the times is to obliterate such distinctions ; and the charge is promptly made of being unphilosophic, illiberal, &c., if there be any stand taken on certain truths as essential to Christianity. Surely there must be a limit somewhere, within which Christianity must be defined, and beyond which it is sacrificed and renounced. There
be an undue narrowing, or enlargement of the circle, both as regards the recognition of opinions and of persons. Some might be disposed to assert that all the peculiarities of the Calvinistic, and some that all those of the Arminian, representations of doctrine, are essential. Whether they are so or not, is a point which the believer must examine, and settle for himself; but every inquirer may be expected to acquiesce in this statement as axiomatic, and as directive to his investigations, that such points must be essential, and perhaps such alone, whose truth, or the contrary, must determine the affirmation to be given respecting all the rest. Nor will those of most enlarged indulgence, as regards the varieties of human judgment, deny that the throwing into matters of open question, successively, all the principal doctrines of revelation, would be a renunciation of Christian truth, whatever positive form opinions might take without that circle. There must be some truths essential; and there is a point somewhere on which the most liberal takes his position sternly, and refuses the pledges of a community of faith with those who proceed further; unless, as is not quite without example in the day we live in, all opinions are at once undermined, doubted, and tolerated, provided they are only earnest and tolerant in their turn!
We propose not here to attempt for our readers the decision how many, and what points, are fundamental in the Christian system. This is what every serious believer must attempt for himself. The result is probably indeterminate, as regards some questions, in the mental history of all but the disciple of Romanisın, or those, in circles not so distant, who receive implicitly all that bigotry and infallible dogmatism may affirm. Some points there will be at the margin, about which, to those who study the word of God for themselves, there will be difficulty in asserting their essentialness, and yet difficulty in the denial. Yet every Christian must repose on some great truths, without which he would feel that the grand purpose of revelation was subverted, and his own hope for eternity destroyed. Without entering on the question whether there may be more, and others, entitled to this regard, we apprehend no contradiction from the majority of our readers, when, in addition to the doctrine of our Lord's divinity, and of salvation through faith in His merits, resulting in holiness, we rank the doctrine of the Spirit's work in transforming the fallen nature of man to the image of God, as one which Christianity cannot have torn from it, except to its own ultimate destruction. The relation, essentially, of this doctrine, to all which is held distinctive of Christianity, is so obvious and inevitable, that, in point of fact, those who have questioned this doctrine have generally abandoned also the cognate positions. A denial of the work of the Spirit, its necessity being of course rejected, is attended by the denial of the personality of the Divine Agent, whose distinct personality is chiefly indicated in the description of His peculiar word. The state of soul which needs not the Spirit's work, is not so fallen as to need the atonement of the Son of God; nor is the doctrine respecting his divine nature in a position to be fairly considered, in its evidence, by those who would deem the incarnation superfluous to any moral end. Not that we imagine, for a moment, that a doctrine is admissible, or otherwise, on the principle of consequences! Every doctrine must be considered in connexion with its appropriate evidences. We were adverting to the relations of truths, not to their manner of proof. We wished to point out the doctrine treated of in the work before us, as an integral and vital portion of the Christian system; and therefore, not only deserving to engage the deepest inquiry, but demanding solicitude, that the truth in relation to it should be brought out in as definite a form as the evidence will admit, and that no misjudged deference to human speculations should abate one particle of the statement which the testimony of Scripture entitles us to deliver on this theme. We cannot conceal from ourselves the fact, that the tendency, of late years, has been to such abatement, and to conciliation with the prepossessions of philosophy, falsely so called; nor that the amount of such concession, though slight in appearance, may sometimes involve the surrender of almost all in the doctrine of the Spirit's influences which is peculiar to revelation, or which could render it worthy of being revealed. This tendency cannot be imputed to the work before us. The investigation is carried on throughout, as in presence, it is true, of antagonistic theories, and with recognition of their scholarship and philosophic tone, but with unmoved adherence, we are happy to add, to the old-established conclusions of Christian theology. We should, indeed, have been pleased if the author had felt himself prompted to something more-if he had not merely displayed the security of his own position, but also had challenged more formally, and exposed the unsoundness of the contrary systems. We cannot admit that the mere exposition of its own proofs will, in all emergencies, suffice to the cause of truth. The contrary errors need to be assailed when they force themselves on public attention; and such as in form approach nearest to the truth, require to be unmasked, and stamped, amid all their plausibilities, as denials of revealed statement.
It will aid our readers in forming their judgment of Mr. Stowell's work, as a whole, and enable them more completely to enter into his views, if we briefly sketch the subjects investigated in these lectures, reserving till afterwards our observations on any particular portions of the volume. The first lecture is occupied in an inquiry into the state of man's spiritual nature, as fallen; and thus the necessity for the interposition of the Divine Spirit becomes apparent. The general doctrine of revelation respecting the Holy Spirit is next reviewed, and proof given of His personality and divinity, and of His special agency, in the work of salvation, on the soul of man. The