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NOTICES OF BOOKS.
THE STATE OF THE IMPENITENT DEAD.*—Dr. Hovey bas" rendered a valuable service, especially to ministers of the gospel, by giving, in the brief
compass of one hundred and sixty small octavo pages, the chief and decisive scriptural proofs of the common doctrine of orthodox Christian churches respecting the state of the impenitent dead. He has thus afforded, by a scholarly and reliable exegesis of passages of the Bible, the materials from which any one can form an incontrovertible argument, both against the doctrine of universal salvation, and the doctrine of the annihilation of the wicked. The course of his 'argument is this: lle shows from the Scriptures that "we have reason to believe that the soul of man was made originally incorruptible, and his body corruptible; that the penal results of sin, which are expressed by the term death, were provided for in the original constitution of both soul and body; that these results consisted of suffering and loss, the soul experiencing the evils which attend and follow moral darkness and separation from God, and the body those which accompany the process of dissolution ; that the all comprehending penalty of sin was, however, the ruin and misery of the soul, the dissolution of the body being no more than the attending satellite of the great and central evil; and that the death of the soul took place immediately after the fall, being a state of misery, which naturally and normally culminates in eternal woe.” He then gives decisive scriptural proofs that unbelievers, as well as believers, will be fully conscious from the time of their physical death until the resurrection, the former in a state of misery, and the latter in a state of blessedness. And as to the “final state” of unbelievers, he shows that it is one of conscious and eternal punishment. The "biblical" and " rational" objections to this doctrine are considered and answered, particularly the theories of Hudson, Ham, Dobney, and others, that "death" and "destruction," when used in the Scriptures with reference to this topic, mean the extinction of conscious being.
* The State of the Impenitent Dead. By Alvau Hovey, D. D., Professor of Christian Theology in the Newton Theological Institution. Boston: Gould & Lincoln. 1859. pp. 160.
BARNES ON THE ATONEMENT.* — Rev. Albert Barnes, of Philadelphia, has given a new theological work to the public. The subject is the atonement. He has treated of it in nine chapters, with the following titles :I. Presumptive objections to the doctrine of atonement. II. Difficulties on the subject of pardon. III. Embarrassments in a human government from the want of an atonement. IV. The objects to be secured by an atonement. V. Probabilities that an atonement will be provided in the divine government, &c. VI. Necessity of an atonement. VII. The nature of an atonement. VIII. Confirmation of these views of the nature of the atonement from the Bible. IX. The extent of the atonement. These topics are all treated in Mr. Barnes's peculiar manner of thinking and writing. Of all men whom we know, it may most truly be said of Mr. Barnes, that he is ever like himself. He is always clear, fair, dispassionate and calm. He dwells on each thought till it is fully expanded. IIe shuns no difficulty, but honestly states and meets every objection. He illustrates every position by pertinent and intelligible facts and comparisons. He justifies his positions by fair and copious scriptural citations.
In this volume he so far surpasses himself, in that he has been excited by the importance of his subject to think with more compactness and to write with more energy than usual. The volume will be read by a very large circle of readers and is destined to be as useful as any that he bas written. It is also most timely. We rejoice that it is given to the world at time when theories of the atonement, that err by defect or excess, are so urgently obtruded on the attention of the public. This volume has this great advantage that it is not encumbered by scholastic terminology. The ordinary terms of theology are disused and the language common to intelligent men is employed in its place. We do not need to indicate the theory of the atonement, which is here taught. It is suggested by the titles of the chapters and by the well known opinions of the author.
LIFE AT THREE-Score.t-Three days before he reached the age of three score, Mr. Barnes preached a sermon which has since been published by Messrs. Parry & McMillan, with the title which we have
* The Atonement, in its relations to Law and Moral Government. By ALBERT Barnes. Philadelphia : Parry & McMillan, 1859. 12mo. pp. 358. Price, $1.00.
+ Life at Three Score. A Sermon delivered in the first Presbyterian Church, Philadelphia, November 28, 1858. By Albert Barnes. Third edition. Philadelphia : Parry & McMillan, 1859. 12mo. pp. 78.
given above. In doing so, he departed from his usual rule, never to introduce his personal concerns into the pulpit, and attempted to give to his hearers his impressions of life, and the world, as he has found them. These impressions are cheerful concerning the past, and hopeful for the future. His life has been to him better that he anticipated. The world, as it opens before him, and those who are to follow him, presents a cheerful prospect. The narration of his habits as a student, of his early position and constant efforts in the cause of temperance, of his conversion from infidelity, first to an intellectual belief, and next to a cordial reception of the gospel, is given in a simple, honest way, that cannot but interest every reader. The thousands of his personal friends, who are scattered throughout the country, will read this narrative with a warm interest. Few men have made more friends than Mr. Barnes, and few have sought less to make friends than be. They have been grouped around him by the attractive influence that is sure to be exerted by a man of honest intentions and effective industry.
CHRISTIAN BROTHERHOOD.* _We took up this volume with peculiar interest, expecting that Dr. Stow, of whom we have often heard as one of the most liberal among our Baptist brethren, in treating such a subject as Christian Brotherhood, would speak of that which is very widely regarded as one of the greatest obstacles to the full realization of that brotherhood, viz : the practice of close communion by Baptist churches, or of communion at the Lord's Table with none except their own denomination, or those who have been baptized by immersion. But we have been disappointed. We thought that he was surely coming to it at several points in the volume, especially in the chapters entitled, “We may cheerfully surrender everything adverse to union, wbich we are not bound by our allegiance to Christ to retain;" and “We may carefully refrain from everything that may unnecessarily tend to widen the breach among Christians, or tend to perpetuate its continuance." The whole volume is an earnest appeal in behalf of the fraternal union of all the disciples of Christ, and contains much judicious advice to those of the author's denomination as to the way
of promoting it; and the whole spirit and aroma of the book makes us quite sure that he cannot himself practice close communion. And
* Christian Brotherhood: A Letter to the Hon. Heman Lincoln. By BARON Stow, D. D., Pastor of the Rowe Street Church, Boston. Boston: Gould & Lincoln. 1859. pp. 208.
perhaps he has thought that he could thus more effectually oppose close communion than by specific and outspoken argument against it. If so, he may be right; though we should judge otherwise. We have hoped that, amid the strong influences of the late religious refreshing towards complete Christian union, our Baptist brethren would cast away the barrier which excludes Christians of other denominations from their fellowship, in the very place in which of all others Christians should be most closely united—the table of the Lord, to which he invites all his disciples, and at which he gave the new commandment so affectingly enforced, “ Love one another as I have loved you." We are familiar with their argument—that baptism is a necessary prerequisite for participation in the Lord's Supper, and that immersion only is baptism. But we feel sure that, sooner or later, their fraternal affection for Christ's true disciples of other names will acquire such strength as to push away one or the other of the members of this argument, as Robert Hall did, and as a large part of the English Baptists, under his lead, have done. And though we are not sure, we are strongly inclined to believe that the right way to remove that very awkward barrier to full Christian brotherhood, is the way adopted by Robert Hall, rather than that adopted by Dr. Stow—the way of open, plain, downright argument against close communion.
First Things.* _ This is another book prepared by Dr. Stow. It consists of sixteen essays or lectures, on “first things” in the Christian church, as presented in that part of the sacred history given in the Acts of the Apostles, forming in the author's view “a consecutive exhibition of the Development of Church Life.” These begin with “ The First Prayer-Meeting,” and end with “The First Council.” They are written in an earnest Chistian spirit, and abound in good sense and practical wisdom, as well as in just views of the simplicity of Christian churches, as formed by the apostles.
BOARDMAN'S HIGHER Christian Life.f—This book is written in an earnest and sprightly style, and with the evident purpose of leading its readers to a higher Christian life. The advertisements of this work, in advance of its publication and afterwards, have been somewhat of
* First Things, or the Development of Church Life. By Baron Stow, D. D. Boston: Gould & Lincoln. 18mo. pp. 282.
† The Higher Christian Life. By Rev. W. E. BOARDMAN. Boston: Henry Hoyt. pp. 330. Price, $1.00.
the "sensation" order, suggesting the thought that a great revolution was at hand. Its appearance indicates that the author was in too great haste to get it through the press. Apart from infelicities of expression, the work seems adapted to meet with favor. Taking some well known facts of Christian experience, as exhibited in the lives of Luther, D'Aubigné and others, where a certain degree of Christian attainment has been followed by a far richer and higher appreciation of divine grace, and an enlarged view of spiritual things, he proceeds to develop the higher Christian life, to show how it is attained, and what is its progress and power. For want of a better name, the change by which one passes to “a closer walk with God," he calls “second conversion." In this, which may indeed be simultaneous with first conversion, Christ is accepted by the soul as its sanctification and life, no less than as a justifying Redeemer. The author does not, however, hold that nothing more remains to be done in the soul. The purifying process then is stili future, a work of time and progress. We trust that this volume will help to deepen Christian emotions, and lead every professed follower of Christ, into whose hands it may fall, to a more confiding and childlike faith in the reception of Christ as all that the soul can desire.
Eadie's COMMENTARY ON THE EPISTLE TO THE PHILIPPIANS.* _We welcome this commentary from the hands of Professor Eadie, and though it is the first of his commentaries which we have examined, we are prepared to esteem his other works most highly from the excellencies which we find in this.
It is at once an exegetical and logical commentary, combining the interest and advantages which pertain to both styles of criticism. As an exegete Dr. Eadie is well furnished, having at his command the eldest and the most recent writers, being at home with De Wette, Meyer, and F. C. Baur, as well as with the elder critics. He is not, however, the servile copyist of any, nor does he adjust bis decisions by counting the votes for or against an opinion, and striking the balance accordingly.
He is not, however, a mere exegete. He does not limit himself to the consideration of grammatical rules and philological principles, but keeps constantly in view the course of thought which the writer is
* A Commentary on the Greek Text of the Epistle of Paul to the Philippians. By John EADIE, D. D., LL. D., Professor of Biblical Literature to the United Presbyterian Church. New York: Robert Carter & Brothers. 1859. 8vo.