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Butunderstana ing kingin, and thanks
letter. For it is not said that Jesus went to Jerusalem and mounted a pinnacle, but that Satan took him to the city and set him on that airy height. More remarkable still is the writer's attempt to honor the very letter in explaining the assertion, that from a high mountain Satan showed Jesus all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them, in a moment of time. He thinks that Jesus actually ascended such a mountain, and “ had an instantaneous view of the leading kingdoms of the earth.” It is easy to understand this temptation as a mental operation. But if Dr. Stearns really knows of any mountain which admits of a prospect any thing like what he describes, we have no doubt some of our panorama painters would be glad to avail themselves of it. We should deem a position on the moon rather more eligible than any position on this curved earth for such a view.
Our attention and thought have been attracted to the essay which we have been examining, because we always read with interest the productions of the respected author, and because the pages which we have re. viewed represent the method of dealing with the text of Scripture that still insists upon their literal interpretation in theory, but departs from it in practice. Dr. Stearns thinks that the actual personal existence of a Devil is one of the most positive doctrines in the New Testament. But there is not a single passage in Scripture which may not be relieved of that inference as easily as the essay before us rids the temptation of Jesus of the visible presence of the tempter. Besides, there are many references to such an agency, which positively require us to regard the words Devil and Satan as simply personifications of evil. What did the Saviour mean when he said, " I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven”? To say nothing of the implication that Satan, if in heaven, was out of his place, does the passage assert a literal sight of his descent? But if it be answered that the vision is figurative, why may we not say the same of the object of the vision, and render the passage, “I saw the power of wickedness falling from its high place, and yielding to the might of holiness and truth"? When Jesus says to the Pharisees, “ Ye are of your father, the Devil," does he really imply that they were the chil.
dren of that Evil One? If he did, they certainly might have quoted one of the commandments, — “Honor thy father,” — as a reason for their allegiance to the Devil. The Saviour distinctly addresses Peter as Satan; and again, the Saviour tells Peter that Satan is aiming to seize him that he may sist him as wheat; and once more, the same Peter tells us that “the Devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about,” &c. We submit that even the last three passages of Scripture, to say nothing of others which might be quoted, can be brought into one consistent view only by a principle of interpretation that will recog. nize Satan as the personification of evil or wickedness.
G. E. E.
NOTICES OF RECENT PUBLICATIONS.
Christ in History; or the Central Power among Men. By
ROBERT TURNBULL, D.D. Boston: Phillips, Sampson, & Co. London : Sampson Low, Son, & Co. 1854.' 12mo. pp. 540.
DR. TURNBULL has brought together, within a small compass and with much freshness and vigor of style, the best results of ancient and modern thought upon his important theme. He modestly says, that, “ though the labor of years, it is not offered as any thing approaching a complete or scientific view of the subject, but rather as a slight contribution or preparation for such a view"; and his work will be found of great service in arous. ing the attention and guiding the inquiries of the student who craves something better than the superficial theories of atheisti. cal, pantheistical, or deistical historians. The manifestation of God in Christ is indeed the crowning fact in the history of the world, and, in a very high and large sense, all that was done and suffered by man before the Saviour's coming may be regarded as a prophecy of that Gospel which all subsequent history fulfils. It is exceedingly important that our ripening schol. ars should be led into such trains of thought and observation as are developed in this interesting work. We have noticed two or three errors, which it may be well to specify, although we are not sure that they have not already caught the author's eye. On the twenty-ninth and thirtieth pages, Kant is represented as
showing in his “ Kritik of the Pure Reason," that man " has affinities and relations with infinite perfection and immortal ex. istence," and the title just given is Germanized in a parenthe. sis as “ Der Praktischen Vernunft.” Now, Kant did nothing of the kind in his “ Kritik of the Pure Reason," but did attempt something of the sort in a supplementary treatise upon the Practical Reason, which Dr. Turnbull probably had in mind, for “ Der Praktischen Vernunft" means “ Of the Practical Reason.” Again, Mr. Theodore Parker is represented as a disciple of Strauss, and as having reproduced his views for the benefit of American readers. Now, if we are not in error, Mr. Parker has had no direct connection with Strauss, save in attempting, as once in our own pages, to discredit his theory. Both these writers reject the Gospels as authentic histories, but they are not at all agreed as to the way in which their origin is to be ex. plained. Indeed, Mr. Parker does not insist, if we have under. stood him, upon any particular theory. Moreover, though this is not directly to the point, Strauss is a Pantheist, according to Dr. Turnbull, whose testimony is, we believe, correct, whilst Mr. Parker is a Deist, or Theist, as he prefers to be called, and a very admirable one too, besides believing most heartily in a conscious immortality of the human soul, to say nothing of the immortality, unconscious, we presume, of sparrows and the rest of the animal creation. It is exceedingly important to keep the different shades of opinion distinct, and not float in the same boat all those who happen to agree in some one important point.
A Compendium of the Theological and Spiritual Writings of EMANUEL SWEDENBORG : being a Systematic and Orderly Epitome of all his Religious Works; selected from more than Thirty Volumes, etc., etc., prefaced by a full Life of the Author ; with a brief View of all his Works on Science, Philosophy, and Theology. Boston : Crosby, Nichols, & Co. 1853. 8vo. pp. 674.
A COMPENDIUM, but formidable at that, for the octavo does not lack much of being a quarto, and the book is arranged in double columns, which are very closely printed. Still, a compilation that would do justice to a writer so voluminous at once and various as Swedenborg could not be brought within less compass. We have from time to time, as opportunities have offered, endeavored to form and express a fair estimate of the claims, natural and supernatural, of the great Swedish philosopher and theologian, and although we have not been persuaded to enroll ourselves amongst his disciples, we have never felt the slightest temptation to treat his opinions with neglect or with lightness. Indeed, we are satisfied that the theology of Swedenborg was an immense advance upon the religious sentiments which were entertained by the majority of his contemporaries. The “ Compendium" seems to us admirably adapted to aid the student of divinity and the general scholar in gaining what no one who aspires to be an educated man can dispense with, an acquaintance with the life and thoughts of this very remarkable man. Whatever may be our sentence upon his peculiar claims, he was at least gifted with a singular moral and spiritual insight, and, hard and dry as his style often is, no one can read his works without pleasure as well as profit. The introduction to the Compendium contains a vast deal of reverent and fresh thought, and will be of service to the young student. On the whole, as it is hardly possible for many persons to own, and utterly impossible for most persons to read, even so much of the writings of Swedenborg as has been given to the public, and as a portion of his writings must and should be read, the compiler of this book seems to us to have done a good work.
The Complete Poetical Works of Thomas CAMPBELL ; with an
original Biography and Notes. Edited by Eres SARGENT. Boston : Phillips, Sampson, & Co. 1854. 12mo. pp. 479.
The chief feature in this beautiful edition of Campbell's poems is the very full and excellent Life of the poet by Mr. Sargent. It is written in a clear and graceful style, and embodies in a brief space all those facts in relation to the poet's personal experience which the general reader would wish to know. As an interest. ing and well-digested memoir, it is much superior to Dr. Beattie's ponderous volumes, from which most of the materials have been drawn. In addition to this source, however, Mr. Sargent has also made use of the biographical notices by Mr. Redding, for some years associated with Campbell in the editorial charge of the New Monthly Magazine, and of some other materials. The notes which he has appended to the volume are also valuable as elucidating any obscurities in the poems, and are a welcome addition. But we regret that it did not fall within his purpose to present a general estimate of Campbell's poetical powers and comparative position amongst his contemporaries. Nor do we find any direct criticism on either of his productions. But these are omissions which we can readily forgive, for the merit of the essay in other respects.
Campbell has always been a popular poet; and it does not seem probable that his popularity is likely to be materially
diminished. No poet of the present century has made a more bril. liant commencement of his career than was seen in the publica. tion of “ The Pleasures of Hope.” And the position which this remarkable piece gave to its author, was strengthened and confirmed by the appearance of“ Gertrude of Wyoming." If his other long poems add nothing to his reputation, his fame was already secure. As a lyric poet he ranks among the first that his country has ever produced. His lyrics have a fire and brilliancy, and his whole verse an exquisite polish, which must always cause his poems to be read with satisfaction. In the edition before us, about fifty poems are included which have not heretofore been com. prised in any edition. Many of them are of great beauty, and all will be read with pleasure by his admirers.
The Breughel Brothers, from the German of the Baron VON
STERNBERG. By G. Henry LODGE. Designs by Billings. Engravings by Baker, Smith, & Andrew. Boston: Little, Brown, & Co. 1854. Sq. 8vo. pp. 187.
The Kunstnovelle or Kunstroman (Art-novel) is a species of literary composition almost peculiar to Germany. At least it has been more extensively and more successfully cultivated there than in any other country. Wagner's “ Travelling Painter," Heinse's “ Ardinghello," Tieck's “ Heart Outpourings of a Cloister Brother," his “Sternbald's Wanderings,” and Fr. Schlegel's “ Lucinde,” are among the best-known specimens of this style of fiction. Goethe's “ Wilhelm Meister” may also be termed an Art-novel, but in a higher sense and with a higher aim than those we have mentioned, terminating as it does with the art of all arts, — the art of life..
The Art-novel may have for its object criticisms on schools and works of art, or art-philosophy, or portraitures of artist. characters and artist-life. It is the last of these which charac. terizes “ The Breughel Brothers.” Every one has heard of the two Breughels, (sons of old Peter Breughel, distinguished by their contemporaries as “Hell Breughel ” and “ Velvet Breu. ghel,") who give the name to this work. It is a series of pictures, in which the principal figures are Flemish painters, boldly drawn and warmly colored, somewhat in the tone of Rubens, but with far more tenderness than ever belonged to the great master of Antwerp.
We are unacquainted with the German of Von Sternberg, but we doubt not that the translation by Dr. Lodge is as faithful in the rendering as it is finished in its diction. It is translated much, rather than little, but we think not overmuch.