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isfactory we have seen. It distinctly recognizes the great truth of God in manifested form, and especially in Christ, as lying at the foundation of all religious and historical development. From his vast learning, Bunsen clearly sees that humanity cannot permanently rise, except through the influence of the new and supernatural force imparted by Christianity.

Of late years two or three works, ebiefly of a practical character, have appeared among ourselves, under the title of the Hand of God in History, or, more briefly, God in History, - one an eloquent discourse by the Rev. Dr. Cheever, with special reference to the history of the United States; another, of greater extent and detail, by the Rev. Hollis Read. The object of these is not, by a philosophical analysis, to prove the presence of God in universal history, but rather, by a citation of facts, in connection with the teachings of Scripture, to indicate his providential sway, or what they fitly designate the “ Hand of God in History." In fact, the title “ God in History," in the case of Mr. Read's work, is an after thought, less appropriate, perhaps, than the original title; for bis sole object, as stated in the preface, is to point out the providence of God in the events of history.” This he discovers, especially in striking junctures or turns of affairs, sometimes called


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"interpositions," rather than in the general movement of universal history. He makes no attempt to analyze the fundamental forces of society, and entirely omits the consideration of ancient history. His work, though interesting and profitable, breathing an excellent spirit, and “ vindicating the ways of God to man,” cannot be said to be an adequate exposition of “ God in history."

We have made these remarks upon the literature of the subject to which the following work in part belongs, in order to assist us in pointing out its object and aim. And here, at the outset, we beg distinctly to say, that it does not pretend to be a philosophy of history, or to be strictly a philosophical or scientific work. Its form, in fact, is rather popular than philosophical, though based upon fundamental principles, and aiming to elucidate and apply essential elements. The title “ Christ in History" limits its character to an exposition of the relations of Christ (here taken as the highest expression or manifestation of God) to universal history.

Hence it takes the Incarnation as the central or “ turning point” in the history of mankind, and attempts to show how all the forces of society converge around it, how all preceding history prepares for it, how all succeeding history dates from it. In order to develop this fact, the reader is taken back to central facts and principles, in other words to the fountains of history in the nature of God, and the nature of man; and the attempt is made to show that the history of the world, ancient and modern, can be understood only with reference to Christ. This is not assumed dogmatically, but evolved by an exposition of historical facts.

Many things which would naturally be discussed in a complete philosophy of history are omitted. Some also are taken for granted, as known or conceded by the reader. Indeed, the attention is necessarily limited to the specific view which it is the design of the author to vindicate.

In the course of the investigation, Christianity is shown to be not only an historical reality, but a divine and supernatural power, by which all other realities and powers are explained and controlled. The theories of the sceptical rationalists, to account for Christianity on natural, local, or superficial grounds, are shown to be untenable. The natural or human factor, of course, is not denied ; another, however, is added, namely, the supernatural or divine. In a word, Christianity, in its interior relations and vital energies, is shown to be nothing less than the presence of God, through Jesus Christ, among men, renovating the hearts of individuals, and preparing the transformation of society.

The author has endeavored to conduct the investigation in the freest and most liberal manner, holding himself aloof as much as possible from unproved preconceptions, and less anxious, therefore, to favor or deny orthodoxy, heterodoxy, or what Luther calls cacodoxy, than to establish the simple truth.

On a theme so vast and comprehensive, his work cannot be otherwise than imperfect. No one can be more sensible of its defects than himself. Though the labor of years, it is not offered as any thing approaching a complete or scientific view of the subject, but rather as a slight contribution, or preparation for such a view. Perhaps he might venture to call it an introduction to universal history, or at least an introduction to the history of Christianity.

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