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James "was permitted to write, condemning most justly the misrepresented doctrine of St. Paul, in no way touching the doctrine itself."1 The doctrine as misrepresented was, that mere intellectual belief in the facts of Christianity justifies; "that if a man's opinions about God be right, he need care nothing about his affections and conduct. . . Whereas St. Paul was not speaking of any such belief, as was no more than mere opinion."2 "What did he mean then, when he spoke so earnestly against the law? .Did he mean the law of ceremonies? .... St. Paul in condemning circumcision did condemn the law of ceremonies and forms, maintaining most decidedly that all such things were a snare which would lead us away from our justification by Christ. Did he mean then to say only this, and is his great doctrine of justification by faith no more than a repetition of the old Scripture, 'I will have mercy and not sacrifice,' or 'The sacrifices of God are a troubled spirit'? Let any one look at the 7th chapter of the Epistle to the Romans, and see whether the law there spoken of means the ceremonial
law St. Paul declared that by the fruits of neither
tree could we be justified, neither by the ceremonies of the law, for they were vain, nor yet by the moral commandments of the law; for though holy and mighty to save in themselves, yet we could not keep them. And therefore declaring that by the law, whether ceremonial or moral, there would no flesh be justified, he set forth another justification, not of works, whether ceremonial or moral, but of faith in Jesus Christ, whom God gave as the propitiation for our sins.3 "He who would be justified by the law says to God, 'Thou has commanded certain things, and I have done them, therefore I have earned my wages'; whereas he who would be justified by faith says rather, 'Thou hast commanded certain things, and I have not done them, therefore I have earned no wages, but Thy displeasure; only I throw myself upon Thee as a God who forgivest sin, whereof
1 Christian Life, Hopes, etc., p. 262. 2 Vol. on Interpretation, p. 369.
8 Christian Life, Hopes, etc., pp. 262, 263, 265.
Thou hast given assurance to all men in that Thou hast given Thine own Son to be a sacrifice for sin, that so there might be forgiveness.' The essence of justification by works is a reliance on what we have done for ourselves; that of justification by faith is a reliance on what God has done and will do for us."1 "This faith entertained not once only, but always, ascribes clearly the whole merit of our justification to Christ; that for His sake God looks upon us, not as enemies but as children, not as condemned but as forgiven."2 In answering the question, whether, having been justified once, we are justified always, Dr. Arnold says: "Faith in Christ is not only faith in His having died for us; it is faith in Him as our Saviour now also by his life; it is that throwing ourselves upon him in all things, as our Redeemer, as our Saviour, as our Head, of whom we are members, desiring our life only for Him. . . And here, if we take it rightly, is found the solution of the great difficulty, holiness without the sense of merit, strength without pride. .... Our dependence on Christ is not once only but perpetual. . . If at any time we sever our communion with Him by walking as it were by ourselves, and doing our works as our own works, then our strength fails, even as our faith has failed: at the very moment we lose our sense of being united to Christ as branches of the vine, and as deriving all our spiritual life from His Spirit, the supply of strength so to speak is stopped; showing us that as we can do all things through Christ that strengtheneth us, so in our own strength we can do nothing, and by the deeds of the law which we are endeavoring to do, there will no flesh be justified. And thus it is true that our faith in Christ alone justifies; our faith in His death once,in His life evermore; our faith in Him as redemption, and as sanctification; our faith in Him as everything, in ourselves as nothing; our faith in Him leading to union with Him, that so being His members truly we shall be with Him and in Him evermore."-*
1 Christian Life, Hopes, etc., pp. 270, 271. 1 Ibid. p. 276.
3 Ibid. pp. 278, 279. The whole concluding part of the sermon from which
Predestination. How much thought Dr. Arnold gave to this and the connected topics, does not appear. He speaks of "the thorny questions of God's foreknowledge, and election, and reprobation, and man's free-will, which have so distracted the peace of the Christian Church, and have led to so great and so many evil consequences." "Surely," he adds, "these foolish and unlearned questions which gender strife, can be no fit subject for the Christian minister, who, for his own sake and that of his hearers, should dwell on nothing from this place, but what may be profitable for godliness."1 In one sermon he seems to admit something like individual election. "St. Luke says in the Acts of the Apostles, 'that as many as were ordained to eternal life believed.' What, think we, does he mean by those ' ordained to eternal life?' Those doubtless whose hearts God had mercifully saved from our three great dangers, — dull and obstinate hardness, — utter lightness and thoughtlessness, — and carefulness about earthly things only."2 But in commenting upon Romans 8: 30, he remarks: " In this passage, so full of the most lively faith, and thankfulness, and joy, it were indeed most fatally to misinterpret it, if we were to suppose St. Paul to mean that this chain would of necessity always remain unbroken, and that all those who were called and once acquitted, would certainly enter at last into glory. Hut he does regard it as something so shocking that it should be otherwise, that he is willing to look upon it as impossible. And we should do better to regard it in this light, and therefore to be careful not to let it happen in our own case, than to rest in any fond notions that God's word has pronounced it to be impossible, while our evil lives and low and selfish affections declare aloud, that it is not only possible, but has actually befallen us."3 Yet a sentence or two further on
these extract's are taken, shows Arnold's deeply evangelical spirit, and draws to him irresistibly every heart, that, like his own, finds its whole life in Christ.
1 Lectures on the Epistle to the Romans, in volume on Interpretation, p. 498.
2 Sermons, vol. 1, pp. S, 9. 8 Sermons on Interpretation, p. 488.
he says: "It is very true that where this love has once taken root in the heart, it is almost impossible to shake it; but our misfortune is, that with too many of us it has never taken root in us at all."1 What authority he has for inserting the word " almost," when he regards Paul as expressing "his assurance that no dangers, or sufferings, or labors, how great soever, will ever be able to shake his deep-rooted love and devotion to God, which had been excited by the mercies displayed in his redemption,"2 does not appear. And there seems a strange' inconsistency between many things that he says about the love of Christ, and the idea of any uncertainty about His losing and keeping His followers to the end. Perhaps when he speaks of the 8th of Romans as containing "encouragement so great that, as is well known, some, have supposed it to do away with the necessity of all warning,"3 we may find the matter in part explained. The ninth and two following chapters he refers to national election.
v The Trinity.
He has one sermon in the volume on the Interpretation of Scripture, in which he treats this doctrine devotionally and practically, but nowhere does he treat it speculatively. "Does the Scripture," he asks, " ever speak of the Trinity as of a fact, so to speak, in the Divine existence? Does not its language always refer to the various relations of God with ourselves? In this, the language of the Catechism is exactly Scriptural: 'I learn to believe in God the Father, who hath made me, in God the Son, who hath redeemed me, in God the Holy Ghost, who hath sanctified me '; that is to say, our notions of God should never for an instant be separated from our own personal relations to Him. And if the external evidence were less decisive against it, the internal would of itself be sufficient in my judgment to throw strong suspicion on the famous ruse of the Three
Heavenly Witnesses; the abstract of the declaration of the relations of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit to one another, (for their unity does not bear upon their witness, but is mentioned as a thing by itself) appearing to me to be at variance with the character of the revelations of Scripture."1 "If we would ascend from His mercies to Himself, the tongue and thought of man must utterly fail; and that in His divine existence, which is dimly shadowed to us by the representation of the Three Eternal Persons in one Godhead, like all the other truths which relate to God's nature, and not to his dealings with man, must of necessity be far beyond the reach of our minds to grasp it."3
Dr. Arnold did not live to develop fully his views on this subject, although it was always prominent among the themes that employed his thoughts and his pen. He designed a systematic and elaborate treatise; but this, like other cherished purposes, was defeated by his premature death. How he would finally have maintained that the Church should be organized as a working force, we do not know; but we should have liked to see how he would have disposed of the practical difficulties of such a scheme as his, when set fully before his mind; and how he would have reconciled the different parts of the mere theory. His favorite idea was that of the identity between Church and State. "The epyov of a Christian Church and State is absolutely one and the same." "I look to the full development of the Christian Church in its perfect form, as the kingdom of God, for the effectual removal of all evil, and promotion of all good; and I can understand no perfect Church, or perfect State, without their blending into one in this ultimate form."3 "The Church during her imperfect state is deficient in power; — the State in the like condition is deficient in knowledge ; — one judges amiss of man's highest happiness;
1 Fragment on llie Church, p. 164. * Christian Life, Hopes, etc., p. 170. 'Life anil Correspondence, pp. 341, 367.
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