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ment at Dr. D.'s difficulty in regard to Dr. M.'s making the nature of the atonement to consist in the manifestation of God's righteousness, which manifestation Dr. D. tells us is not essential to the nature of the atonement, but is an appendage or result. Yet the atoneineut, Dr. D. declares, must satisfy the law. "The principles of substitution, of vicarions suffering, and a proper satisfaction to the violated law and justice of God, are all essential to constitute the nature of the atonement." Sermon, p. 15. His Letter says the same,-In these, mainly, consists the essence of the atonement." By "a proper satisfaction to the law" is not meant however a literal endurance of its penalty; for this Dr. D. disclaims. Nor must this language mean that manifestation which is made by means of Christ's sufferings, of the righteousness of God while he pardons sinners; for the atonement it is said, is complete without this manifestation; and the grand defect of Dr. M.'s sermon is, that it makes it otherwise. We are able then to state, though we cannot so well explain, the peculiarity of this view of the atonement. If we are not mistaken it is this: the violated law is satisfied, while it dispenses with the literal execution of its penalty, on the one hand, nor on the other, leans for its support on the righteousness of God as seen in the atonement. It finds its satisfaction in something distinct from this, something on which this manifestation of God's righteousness is itself dependent. We will not say that this view of the atonement subverts the law," but we ask on what does the law rest?
We have no disposition to dispute the agreement which Dr. D. claims between himself and Professor Stuart; especially after having laboured to show the same thing ourselves. But as this agreement is in the sense and not in the letter, we hope he will not question Dr. M.'s orthodoxy, if he also shall appear to agree in sentiment with Prof. S.
though his phraseology should not be exactly the same. "The doctrine of his (Prof. S.'s) sermon is" says Dr. D. "that Christ suffered as our substitute; or that his sufferings and death were an expiatory offering on account of which our sins are pardoned and we are restored to divine favour." Again we add, Prof. S. says "his (Christ's) sufferings and death were, by divine appointment, accepted instead of the punishment due to us as sinners, and that God in consequence of the offering made by Christ, par dons our offences and restores us 10 his favour. What says Dr. M.? The atonement, 66 was a substitute for an execution of law." Again speaking of what Christ did to make atonement, "this appears to be the most efficacious atonement, the best substitute for the execution of the law, which infinite wisdom could devise." p. 30. Again he says " it laid a proper foundation for the pardon and salvation of sintul men." Now we ask if the things said in these passages cited from the two Professors are not the same things? We do hope the difference if there be any will be pointed out. But says Mr. S. in reference to the position now cited, "this also is JUST WHAT I MEAN, when I say that Christ in his sufferings and death was our substitute.
Again Prof. S. says,
"He was not an isolated monument of suffering and of God's displeasure against sinners; not merely a sign that sin could be pardoned, by which an abstract testimony could be given, like that which the rainbow gives of God's covenant to drown
the earth no more."
Does not Prof. M.say as much ?-"But I venture to say this symbol has a natural fituess for its object. Its primary object was not so much to enlighten ings of creatures. the understanding as to impress the feelA mere revelation, written or oral, might have been sufficient if the former of these had been the object. Again the feelings of creatures were to be impressed by an exhibition not of the intellectual conceptions of the divine mind, but of the determinate purposes and the holy feelings of God."
And in another place speaking of following quotations. We make Christ's sufferings, he says,
"The human mind can conceive of no
them not for the purpose of proving any inconsistency in Dr. D. but with the hope of inducing him to
exhibition calculated to produce a deep- examine again the real character of er impression."
Where is the dissonance then between Dr. Murdock and Prof. Stuart. And since Dr. D. also agrees with Prof. S. where is the difference between him and Dr. Murdock? We remember an axiom that if two things be equal to the same thing they are equal to one another. Or, if A. agree with B. and B. agree with C. it follows that A. and C. agree. Therefore the Doctors are agreed.
But we promised to notice the complaint of Dr. D. that we had represented him as proceeding in the latter part of his discourse, on the supposition of a literal execution of the law. We would willingly waive the discussion of this matter lest we should seem either to disprove the correctness of our own position that our authors were agreed, or else find Dr. D. at variance with himself; neither of which we have any wish to do.
In the former part of his discourse Dr. D. states his own views of the doctrine in debate; in the latter part he combats what he supposes to be the views of Dr. M. Now admitting that the two gentlemen were agreed in the position that the law was not literally executed on the Saviour, it must be evident that Dr. M. could not be controverted on this point, except on the ground that the law was literally executed. Accordingly the purport of our remark was, that it was not on the ground of quotations containing the direct statement of Dr. D.'s views on the point in question, that we spoke of discord, but rather in view of conclusions near the close of his discourse; for in this part of it be proceeded on the supposition that the law was literally executed on the Saviour." Perhaps the remark was hasty if so we have no apology but what may be found in the
that discourse to controvert which it was necessary to use the phraseology which he employs.
Of Dr. M.'s 'system' Dr. D.
"It tends apparently, at least, to subvert the law. It declares that "the atonement is something different from the execution of the law, and a substitute for it."
Now if the error which is combatted here, does not consist in the denial of a literal execution of the law on Christ, in what does it consist? The man, it should seem, who is wrong in asserting a literal execution of the law, and wrong in asserting something different from it" must find the correct idea somewhere between these positions. We have puzzled ourselves to find this idea, but it is too "shadowy' for our apprehension-it vanishes into "thin air" as often as we try to grasp it.
"Surely, then,his atonement was not "a substitute for the execution of the law." On the contrary, his obedience and sufferings were a substantial fulfilment of its precept and its penalty, &c."
It might be asked here; If the atonement was not a substitute for the execution of the law, nor yet strictly speaking, the execution itself, what was it?-But to proceed; "His obedience and sufferings were a substantial fulfilment of its precept and its penalty:" that is, his obedience was a substantial fulfilment of the precept of the law, and his sufferings a substantial fulfilment of its penalty. Are we then to understand in this instance as before, the word 'substantial' as "a qualifying term and opposed to literal?" But this would make Dr. D. say that the obedience of Christ was a substantial, i. e. not a literal fulfilment of the divine precept; whereas the scripture tells us he
fulfilleth" all righteousness." This surely Dr. D. does not mean to say. Are we then to understand his language thus:-"His obedience was a substantial literal] fulfilment of the precept of the law, and his sufferings a substantial [not literal] fulfilment of its penalty. Dr. D. will not admit this explanation of his language. The word substantial' then as here used (not as here intended to be used) must be equivalent to literal.' But not to torture a word, since words have already occasioned so much misunderstanding-what other construction can be fairly put upon it in its connexion with the whole passage? That atonement which is in no sense "a substitute for the execution of the law," but on the contrary a substantial fulfilment of its precept and its penalty, "not a departure from the regular course of justice, but perfectly accordant with its immutable principles," does necessarily imply a literal execution of the law on the Redeemer. What language different from this would a writer use who should strenuously contend for this opinion? We do not charge Dr. D. with holding this opinion; we only charge it upon his language: and surely it furnishes some apology for our asserting that in this part of his discourse he proceeded on the supposition of a literal execution of the law.
One other quotation we will make, not for the purpose of proving a disagreement which does not exist between its author and Dr. M. but to show how constantly Dr. D. misap prehends the sermon which he controverts, and so beats the air.
"I know it is objected to the plain, oldfashioned, scriptural view of the atonement which we have given, that reason disclaims it," To suppose that Christ was really our sponsor, and that he suffered in this character :" this it is alleged, “would involve such a transfer of legal obligations and liabilities and merits, as is inadmissi
ble." This objection comes in the guise of philosophy. Yet one of the greatest of philosophers had very different views. “Vicarious punishment" says the profound
Butler," is a providential appointment of every day's experience."
We have italicized the word 'legal' in the above passage; also the word punishment' as implying guilt in the subject of it. We forbear further comment, for we do not wish to press the topic under consideration. For the same reason we will make no more quotations. It must, we think, be evident to Dr. D. not only that his own language implies more than be intended, but that he has great ly misapprehended the purport of Dr.Murdock's. Under an impression, however received, that Dr. M.'s discourse was full of error, it was natural that he should feel it to be his duty as a Christian minister to contend against it. But was not his impression hasty and his reprehension
We have a word to say respecting our "insult on the public understanding."
If the insult consisted in our having attempted to reconcile the sentiments of Dr. D. with the strange theory which he had extracted, we know not how, from Dr. M.'s sermon-a theory which "subverts the law" of God; exhibits the divine character as "inexplicable and distressing;" "virtually denies the atonement," or reduces it to a shadow or a metaphor"; sets the bible at defiance, or tortures it into a new sense by criticism;" "aud with an imposing and tremendous logic blots out every ray of human hope forever, and plunges all the millions of the fallen family in absolute despair,". we must beg to excuse ourselves from such a charge. We made no comparison of the points of difference between this theory and the faith of Dr. D. Nor do we now affirm aught, or deny aught respecting it, save that if it can be found in Dr. Murdock's sermon on the Atonement, we have become strangers to our mother tongue, and its words, to us, have lost their English import. It was with the sentiments, which, upon a careful and candid examination, we found in Dr. M.'s
discourse, that we compared the sentiments of Dr. D. On what then rests the charge of our having insulted the public understanding? On nothing less than this, that we have presumed to acquit Dr. Murdock's 6 sermon of the theory' which Dr. D.'s "tremendous logic" had detected in it-to the great amazement of its author.
But lest we should seem to take the Dr. up too seriously on this point, we will only say in more sober, perhaps more becoming language, that Dr. D. probably did not reflect that the charge which he thus brings against us rests on the assumption that his own views of the sermon in question were indisputably right, and the views of those who differed from him as indisputably wrong and also that the decision of the public understanding coincided with his Own. We are not wanting in respect for the public understanding, but we wish to suggest to such as wonder at the temerity of those who speak peaceably of Dr. M.'s sermon, that the public voice is by no means unanimous in condemning it. Of this we have very satisfactory evidence.
But to conclude this protracted article we hope Dr. D. will not only be satisfied with the explanations which have been given, but that he will no longer insist on being at antipodes with Dr. M. If as a prudent man aware of the jealousies and errors of the times, he still regrets that Dr. M. should have clothed his sentiments in a peculiar phraseology, we will not censure him in this. We have ourselves a portion of the same regret. But if Dr. M.'s theology be, and can be shown to be, in no essential point, different from that of his brethren,
Dr. D. will surely wish with us that a dissension which bad existed in appearance only, should be done away. There are those who with a zeal proportioned to their love of error, and with an assiduity stimulated by their aversion to that system of doctrines whose prevalence it is their religion to oppose, are ever ready to proclaim and magnify division whether real or apparent, among those whose strength is in unity of faith. It was with this fact in view that we took up the subject in controversy. We were aware of the delicacy of the undertaking, yet we felt it to be our duty if possible to close up a breach which we regretted to see growing wider daily, by the efforts of both friends and foes. We hope our labour, however humble, was not "labour thrown away."
We sincerely join with Dr. D. in his expressions of regret that the atonement should be made the subject of so much controversy, "a subject never designed, surely to perplex our minds with the subtleties of debate, but rather to overwhelm every human heart with a tide of grateful admiration and love." We regret that perverseness and blindness of the human mind which should ever make the subtleties of debate" on such a subject necessary. But there are occasions, if we are not deceived, the present is one-when "an imperious sense of duty" should constrain us. We also join with Dr. D. in his prayerthough we cannot make Dr. M. the occasion of it,—that the doctrine of the atonement may never be impaired by the speculations of a bold and unscriptural philosophy-that "this sanctuary for the guilty and wretched of our race may ever remain inviolate.”
We are compelled to defer a Review of Village Hymns; and also to omit Religious and other intelligence. Owing to unexpected circumstances, the present Number has been delayed several days beyond the time of publication.
INDEX TO THE ESSAYS, INTELLIGENCE, &c.
OF THE SIXTH VOLUME OF THE CHRISTIAN SPECTATOR.
ABRIDGEMENT of Adam's Latin Gram-
Blumhardt, Letter from the Rev. The-
Adam's Latin Grammar, Abridgement of, Board, American, Annual Meeting of the,
Bulletin of the Sciences and Industry
Bunker Hill Monument, 550
Burlington College, 497
Butrick, Tour of Mr. 102
Byron's Correspondence, 551
Calmet's Dictionary, 52
Cambridge, Episcopal Church at, 110
Cathedral, magnificent, 284
Catholic church, renunciation of the, 558
Catholics in England, 377
Celebration of our national independence,
Central America, 446
Ceylon, interesting intelligence from, 607
Change of religion, 171
Charitable Societies' house, 288
Cherokees, mission among the, 102
progress of religion among