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he gives in the Bibliographical Appendices to his various sections. As he tells us in his preface, his choice of them is the result of personal study. He has inserted none which he deemed unworthy of a place in his book, and he carefully discriminates between the merits of those which are inserted.

ART. V. CHRIST OR PLATO?

The Influence of Greek Ideas and Usages upon the Christian Church. The Hibbert Lectures, 1888. By the late EDWIN HATCH, D.D., Reader in Ecclesiastical History in the University of Oxford. Edited by A. M. FAIRBAIRN, D.D., Principal of Mansfield College, Oxford. (London, 1890.)

To trace the influence of one historic force upon another is a task which requires dexterity and skill. The remains which survive of the history of the past are never separated scientifically into classes when they come before us. The various influences which have gone to make them are buried in them in the profoundest confusion. Some of the factors which really operated in producing the result have vanished altogether, and it would be as hopeless a task to disinter them and estimate their contribution as to trace in a full-grown tree the effects of a summer shower a hundred years ago. Others are more readily appreciable, and of these it is possible in some degree to calculate the effects; but even here there is room for much misapprehension, because our knowledge is always partial-always falls short of the reality, always tends to present as simple what was complex and to beguile us into accepting results which square with the facts we have happened to examine. If, then, we set out to consider the influence of one order of ideas and usages upon another, we must bear in mind that we are mostly dealing with forces both of which are only partially known in themselves. We have the result, in which the two are commingled, but we do not know, as a rule, exactly what either would have done by itself. All we can do is to be certain that the picture we give of either is as complete as we can make it.

These commonplace truths are peculiarly necessary to be kept in view in dealing with the subject which the late Dr.

Hatch chose for his Hibbert Lectures. The learned author in the first chapter lays down the outlines of the method he proposes to follow. While there are many wholesome truths proclaimed in this lecture there is an omission to be noticed which strikes the eye at once, and might, we think, have been avoided if the commonplaces set down above had been borne in mind. There is no attempt whatever to define precisely what Christianity was, or at least the short description given of it seems to omit some of the most essential features. The book opens with the remark that 'it is impossible for anyone, whether he be a student of history or no, to fail to notice a difference of both form and content between the Sermon on the Mount and the Nicene Creed.' Then later on, in the same page, we read, 'If anyone thinks that (this contrast) is sufficiently explained by saying that the one is a sermon and the other a creed, it must be pointed out in reply that the question why an ethical sermon stood in the forefront of the teaching of Jesus Christ, and a metaphysical creed in the forefront of the Christianity of the fourth century, is a problem which claims investigation.' From this language one would be disposed to infer that the author regarded the Sermon on the Mount as giving a complete account of the Christianity of Christ. At the end of the last lecture (p. 351) this anticipation is in some degree confirmed. It is possible,' writes Dr. Hatch, 'to urge that what was absent from the early form cannot be essential, and that the Sermon on the Mount is not an outlying part of the Gospel, but its sum.' Strictly speaking, the office of a critic may be said to cease with the statement of this principle; for it means that, however excellent the exposition 'in the course of the lectures of Greek thought and usage, the results must be wrong, seeing that the view adopted of Christianity is so entirely inadequate. According to it Christianity will have had little or nothing to contribute to the whole process; its essential features have simply been swamped under a mass of alien material. It has been merely passive and plastic, taking, after a struggle no doubt, the form imposed upon it from without, and utterly transmuted in the process. Such a point of view as this would require, as we think, no criticism; the mere statement of it should be enough. But it would be doing an injustice to the memory and high reputation of Dr. Hatch, and to those who have so laboriously brought his work before the world, to treat it in so supercilious a manner; we propose, therefore, to lay before our readers some few reasons for thinking that Christianity was

a more complex thing than it has seemed to Dr. Hatch, to indicate some points which illustrate the true relation of Hellenism to Christianity as we conceive it, and to comment briefly on the theory of history which seems to underlie Dr. Hatch's book.

Before we enter upon this task it will be well to sketch briefly the outline of the lectures. Their matter falls under five heads. After an introductory statement of method the second lecture proceeds to deal with the subject of Greek education, and is intended to put before us as clearly as possible the influences which moulded the Greek mind in the early centuries after Christ. This subject is treated with the wide learning and literary finish which are characteristic of the author. We have not space to discuss it, but we can cordially commend it to our readers. The next lecture deals with Greek and Christian exegesis. Under this head we have an interesting account of the way in which the literal sense of written words gradually became subordinate to the inferred or allegorical sense. The treatment of the Homeric stories by late philosophers, it is argued, became the type of the Christian exegetical methods. We then come to the province of rhetoric. Here, again, ample learning is brought to bear upon the question in hand. The rise and growth of the peculiar forms of rhetoric which obtained in the philosophical schools of Greece are admirably shown. It is then argued that Christianity adopted the Greek method of set discourses and homilies, and by this means stifled the purer form of preaching which had been prevalent in the Church, and of which the latest appearance was in the Montanist prophesyings. We turn, fourthly, to Greek philosophy. This subject, as may well be supposed, occupies a very large portion of the book. Dr. Hatch points out the inveterate tendency of the Greek mind to dialectical discussions, the changes in meaning of the word doyua, and its gradual association with the ideas of fixity and definiteness; the importance given, as philosophy decayed and original thinking became less common, to the stated convictions or dogmas of the leading philosophic teachers. He shows how deep was the conviction in the Greek mind that an orderly system of ideas must correspond with the course of nature. It was, then, this 'tendency to speculate,' which was absorbed into Christianity, rather than the 'speculations themselves '-the belief in the value and validity of reasoned expositions of the faith, so strongly contrasted with the simpler and predominantly ethical acceptance of it-which was characteristic of the

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earlier years of the Church's life. The subject is worked out in detail under the heads of Ethics' and 'Theology.' In each case the result was the same: in each case Greek thought triumphed. In ethics Greek influences produced the practice of asceticism and the juristic conception of individual rights, which, Dr. Hatch maintains, is in flat opposition to the Sermon on the Mount. In the province of metaphysical theology Greek influence resulted in a remote and transcendent view of God, ascribed to the influence of Plato (p. 208), together with a belief in the value of dogmatic definitions. Dr. Hatch admits that the Christian world has not received without modification the predominantly Greek conception of God as a moral governor, which Origen put forth in his Principia, but he insists that the conception of probation is Greek and not Hebrew (cf. pp. 231-2). Lastly, we are taken into the shrines where the Greek mysteries were celebrated, and there we find the source of much of the ritual and many of the ideas connected with the Christian sacraments. The work concludes with two lectures on the 'Incorporation of Christian Ideas into a Body of Doctrine' and the 'Transformation of the Basis of Christian Union.' These sum up what has gone before and place the general doctrine in clear light. We need not pause upon them here. From this brief outline it will be seen that the utterances above cited concerning the Sermon on the Mount are by no means accidental. They represent Dr. Hatch's real conviction, and are not to be explained as the adoption of a popular and unscientific form of expression. The 'sum' of all that Christ came to do was apparently exhausted in His first sermon; for everything else-exegesis, doctrine, ethics, organization, and ritual-we are indebted to the mind of Greece.

Is it true that there are no vestiges of any of these things to be found in the New Testament? And must we suppose, granted that any such traces exist, that we already have begun to feel the influence of Hellenism? Let us call to mind what exactly the New Testament is. It is a collection of books written under various circumstances, and as a rule under the pressure of a temporary need. In some cases both the occasion and the date are hard to determine; in others they are clear and indisputable. These books, then, thus written, are gradually collected together into one body. And this is not done casually or without investigation; the process turns on the inner character of the books themselves. Their inner character is the force which transforms them from a collection of accidental and ephemeral effusions into a literature

of sacred books. We do not, then, expect in them any formal statements of doctrine or rules for usage, except in so far as these were rendered necessary by the peculiar circumstances out of which they grew. It may, perhaps, be maintained with truth that there is practically no theology characteristically Christian if the Sermon on the Mount be taken as the sum of the Christian faith. Yet even here there is a markedly higher conception of God offered to the world than that which Dr. Hatch ascribes to the Jewish and early Christian mind.

'In primitive Christianity we find ourselves in another sphere of ideas (than that of Greece); we seem to be breathing the air of Syria, with Syrian forms moving round us and speaking a language which is not familiar to us. For the Greek city, with its orderly government, we have to substitute the picture of an Eastern sheyk, at once the paymaster of his dependents and their judge. Two conceptions are dominant-that of wages for work done and that of positive law' (p. 224). At the same time 'Christianity had no need to borrow from Greek philosophy either the idea of the unity of God or the belief that He made the world' (p. 188).

It was only on the moral side that the idea of the 'Eastern sheyk' was dominant. There are a number of passages in the Sermon on the Mount which emphasize the notion of reward, and, if they stood alone, might seem to suggest no higher idea than they do to Dr. Hatch. There are two others not cited in the lectures which throw some considerable light on the sense in which 'reward' is meant. 'I say unto you, Love your enemies... that ye may be the children (vioì) of your Father which is in heaven, for He maketh His sun to rise on the evil and on the good' (chap. v. 44, 45); and again, Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect' (v. 48). Both these passages place before the hearers of the Sermon as their true ideal a growing assimilation of themselves to their Father in heaven; and this is not precisely the same thing as the attainment of wages at the hands of a paymaster or the gratification of a severe and vindictive judge (cf. p. 225). We do not think, then, that even within the very restricted area which is allowed to primitive Christianity Dr. Hatch has been quite just to it. But the Sermon on the Mount, we are ready to admit, is not a dogmatic utterance; it is primarily ethical, and, we may add, more closely bound up with the law than seems to be popularly acknowledged. It promulgates a moral code far higher than anything in the old law, but it never passes beyond the legal point of view. The Mosaic law

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