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Lockian Sensationalist philosophy still wedded to the world of the senses, and from Rousseau's Gospel of Nature, were felt in the first part of our century, and were turned into higher channels by pantheism, poetic and religious. Nor only so ; but Christian thought has, in our time, spite of Agnosticism and Materialism, received the naturalistic interpretations of man which it has been sought to found on such researches as those of Darwin and Romanes, with a truth-loving readiness to concede man's correlation on his physical side with lower forms of life, since it is no whit materialistic to admit that his life has a material basis, but also with a discriminating faculty that has perceived, beyond the limited sphere they share in common, distinctive powers in man, that unity of the ethical and the physical, as a reasoning, self - determined, and self-conscious personality. It is enough to recall, in respect of these distinctive powers, those unlimited ranges of thought and feeling, those unique capacities of moral aspiration and spiritual communion, which in their distinctiveness it has more carefully and forcefully presented as standing far apart from possible explanation by animal descent or animal mechanism. It has advanced its doctrine of man, the microcosm, by far-thoughted declinature of the apotheosis of a vapid pantheism, impoverishing its Deity to the impersonal form of unconscious being or thought.
Modern Christian thought, which, as we have seen, retains on better grounds such anthropomorphism as may be thought to be implied in the conception of a personal Deity, holds with more enlightened grasp a correlative view of man that may be termed theomorphic, maintaining the freedom and personality of man, as living image of the Logos, made in the likeness of God, and as arbiter of his own destiny. A broader and firmer basis for theology it now seeks in a profounder analysis of man's nature, whereby are disclosed in man unappeasable spiritual instincts whose cravings lay the basis for a religion of revelation, and he is proved to be a true human personality, so rooted in the personality of God as to be destined to wear the image of the ethical Deity. “Dépersonnaliser l'homme, c'est la tendance dominante à notre époque;" but modern Christian theology has, spite of an insinuating Pantheism that virtually disowns free-will, taken
its stand more firmly than before on this fact of personality in man, not, with Lotze, as only a weak imitation or pale semblance, but as that which has been proved so real as to form the basis of the loftiest theism. The unprecedented psychological researches of the last three decades have tended so much more fully to show how man's whole nature is made for religion that, more confidently than ever, we may ask
“War nicht das Auge sonnenhaft,
Wie könnten wir das Licht erblicken?” Recent philosophy of religion, with theistic standpoint, has more strenuously contended for the immortality of the soul, as “the great prophecy of reason,” the soul having for its destination the Divine Image which demands continuance in the future life. Modern Christian thought has more wisely insisted on the dependence of the sense of personal immortality upon the strength of the spiritual life and its hold on the Being of God, as it has also more deeply discerned the independence of a doctrine so deeply writ, though Pantheism knows it not, on the nature of man, of any separate and specific announcement,-a doctrine independent of such announcement, because assumed and deepened by revelation, besides being postulated by true spiritual philosophy as its own resting-place. In its treatment of man, recent Christian theology, insisting not on man as made originally perfect, but only as susceptible of sinless, but not effortless, development, more fully recognises the development of sin alike in the race and in the individual, and represents true manhood as completed only in Christ, our Head and Representative, in virtue of the fact of solidarity, and realised only in spiritual sonship. As it has seen in man the completion of creation or its highest term, so it has more clearly perceived in Christ, the perfect or ideal Man, in Whom first, as the true microcosm, we see man made wholly in the image of God, the goal or summit to which the spiritual evolution or development of man did tend, under the working of that law of the spirit of life in Christ Jesus, of which, in its free actings in man's ethico-religious life, it may be truly said that “all's love, yet all's law.”
1 Microcosmus, Book ix. chap. iv. (T. & T. Clark.)
PROGRESS IN THE SPHERE OF THE CONTENTS
OF CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY—continued.
CINCE the time of Schleiermacher, revelaw tion has been conceived less as something spectacular, magical, mechanical, and isolated, in its modes of operation : it is seen how truly man's rational nature is destined for revelation, and revelation keyed to man's whole spiritual nature: revelation is viewed far more profoundly in recent theology as a living process, continuous, progressive, ever-enlarging as it becomes historically evolved from previous and more incomplete revelation. Revelation we now apprehend, not as a mere sacred “ deposit,” but as a ceaseless process since it is in and through a process of redemption that revelation is to us: it is an important advance that has led us to dis