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those which are more complex. Among the most notable of recent gains in respect of method has been the recognition of the Christocentric basis of Christian theology, whereby the historical and ethical Christ has become its sun and centre. This Christological idea, as the principle of reconstruction, has put Christian theology on a more scientific basis, since it has thus One who is “ Image of the Invisible God” for the centre of its reasoning and speculation no less than of its observation and experience. This rigour of the scientific spirit and method theology seeks still to carry forward into the whole realm of Christian truth: as Duhm has recently said, “Der wissenschaftliche Theologe will die Wahrheit und nur die Wahrheit.” “Er ist immer nur auf dem Wege, niemals am Ziel. Er folgt in bescheidener Entfernung der lebendigen Geschichte, die sich zwischen Gott und den Bewohnern dieses kleinen Planeten abspielt.”1 The scientific theologian, let us add, to-day more than ever before, unites to the vigour of a religious life which is not dependent on such strength as may be imparted by theological concepts, but is fed by living communion with the world unseen, a spirit of communion with the scientific thought of his own time, and an appreciative feeling for every real movement of contemporaneous human civilisation in its march towards a supersensuous, synthetic life.
1 Prof. Bernh. Duhm, Über Ziel und Methode der theologischen Wissenschaft. Basel, 1889. (Antrittsvorlesung in der Aula der Universität zu Basel)
The same progressiveness meets us when we turn to the proper adjustment of the circle of RELATIONS which Christian theology sustains, as, for example, its relations to science, to philosophy, to life, to literature, and to art. The folly of the old relations of conflict between theology and science is now universally admitted, and the Cuique Suum principle acted on: theology itself, in virtue of its own facts and phenomena, principles and data, claims to be science; and the independence of physical science is claimed by none more amply than by modern Christian theologians. The conflict has been more keenly discriminated as apparent rather than real; as due to that progressiveness which is the realised glory of science, but ought equally to be so of theology; and as having been, not with science as science, but only with science grown theological—that is to say, with aggressive atheistic or agnostic science. On the scientific side, the vanity of posturing as a scientific wolf in the theological fold has become generally perceived, and the wisdom of a non-intrusion policy in matters strictly theological is recognised by all save the occasional scientist who, Thrasonical and overweening, ill content even with the extinction of the once evilly dogmatic theologians who “lie about the cradle of every science as the strangled snakes beside that of Hercules," and presuming on his esoteric initiation into nature's mysteries, forgets, in the pride of theological nescience, how utterly destitute he is of logical warrant for scouting the conception of a theistic cosmogony, and how many more things exist in heaven and earth than are dreamed of in the agnostic philosophies, if such they can without inherent self-contradiction be called, of some modern scientific Horatios.
It is of happy omen that, as compared with the days, sad to say, not so very remote, of recrimination and suspicion, it is now so rarely needful to ask, as to the students of the Divine, whether in nature or in religion
“Tantæne animis cælestibus iræ ?”
It is assuring to be told, from the side of science, that “with scientific theology agnosticism has no quarrel,” but only with “ecclesiasticism.” But Positivism, which claims to originate in “real science, only that it may end in true religion,” passes on to us a hierarchy of the sciences in which no place is found for theology: theology has no quarrel with any one of these; as little has any one of them with theology, whose aims they all subserve, and in whose completion alone we reach the supreme synthesis of all scientific researches. Not only has modern Christian theology realised improved relations between itself and the sciences, but there has also been substantial progress in establishing the validity of the title of theology to be itself a science, in face of what must be regarded as the unscientific prejudices at times evinced by men of science. The science of our era, proudly styled " the century of natural science,” may
not number God among its phenomena, but it postulates, by a law of self-conscious thought, an eternal Cause, the One Reality, as the Spencerian school has shown,-cherishes indeed the conviction, as the end of its scientific inquiry and thought, that we are “ever in the presence of an Infinite and Eternal Energy, from which all things proceed,” and when this “highest Reality” which, as has been said, " is the ground of the possibility of all finite things,” has been so fully recognised, a distinct step may be taken as made towards the harmonising of science and theology.
Science leads to a transcendental destination : science, determined to know nothing of Christian theology, remains a torso. But modern science insists that a “correlative and complement” to the visible universe be found in the Unseen, since the former “ forms only an infinitesimal portion of that stupendous whole which alone is entitled to be called the universe.” As a result of the mutual adjustment of relations recently effected, we find that theology has made actual progress by humbly welcoming the aid afforded by science
1 The Unseen Universe, p. 66.