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with blind honesty charges all who differ from him with being wilful falsifiers.

I have not undertaken to defend the introduction of the word “ children " in the Syriac version, if it occur there. Households is a larger word, and usually includes children ; while it does not exclude servants and other adult inmates. Buc this would I ask of the Baptists, Why neither in their chapels, nor in their missions to the heathen, do we ever read of the baptism of households as in the New Testament, and in the annals of all modern missions, except theirs ? I wish some Baptist would answer that simple question. Either the Apostolic baptism of “households" was wrong; or the modern Baptist practice is so.

A SCRIPTURAL, NOT SECTARIAN, BAPTIST.

MR. CHURTON AND THE OXFORD TRACT WRITERS; WITH A POSTSCRIPT ON PASCAL AND THE HON. AND REV. G.

SPENCER.

To the Editor of the Christian Observer. Your readers will have oberved with astonishment, in your Number for March, p. 150, the unfounded assertions of Mr. Churton with regard to the Christian Observer; and will rejoice in your complete exposure of the strange “dreams which he has taken for facts. You have too, sir, the sympathy of all your candid readers, in the charges of falsehood which have been brought against you, utterly without cause. Let me mention for your comfort that at a meeting of clergymen, in this neighbourhood, mutual accusations of inaccuracy were made against you and the Oxford Tract men ; and it was proposed that at the next meeting, the accusers should bring their proofs, and a verdict be given after impartial hearing. You, sir, were acquitted unanimously; the accuser himself being convinced of his mistake. But not so the other party. And if you please, your hearers at large shall know some of the charges brought against them, and let any one who can defend them.

In the famous Tract on Reserve, No. 80, at p. 77, we have the following translation from Pascal, to shew that the doctrine of justification through the atonement is an easy doctrine, and generally acceptable. “Had the design of our Lord's coming," says Pascal,“ been the work of Justification only, it had been then the easiest task in the world to convince an unbeliever. But since he came, as Isaiah prophetically speaks, in sanctificationem et in scandalum, perverse infidelity is above our strength to conquer, and our art to cure.” (page 179.)

Will your readers believe that Pascal's argument is just the contrary? That if our Lord had come for our sanctification" only, without those doctrines which have been a stumbling block to the Jew and the Greek, then it would be easy to convince an unbeliever. Let them judge : here is the passage from Pascal, Tom. ii. Art. 18. sec. ll. “Si Jésus Christ n'étoit venu que pour sanctifier, toute l'Ecriture et toutes choses y tendroient, et il seroit bien aisé de convaincre les infidèles. Mais comme il est venu in sanctificationem et in scandalum, comme dit Isaïe, nous ne pouvons convaincre l'obstination des infidèles."

The main word in the extract, 'sanctifier' is translated as it were justifier,' to suit the Tract writer's purpose; and against the evident design of Pascal.

So in Tract 34, Vol. I. the following piece of “discreditable management" is pointed out by Mr. Fitzgerald, in his able pamphlet on Episcopacy, Tradition, &c. (p. 49.)

" In the third section of Tertullian's book, De Corona Militis, occur these words : “Hanc observationem si nulla Scriptura determinavit, certè consuetudo corroboravit, quæ sine dubio de traditione manavit. Quomodo enim usurpari quid potest, si traditum prius non est? Etiam in traditionis obtentu exigenda est, inquis, auctoritas scripta. Ergo queramus an et traditio non scripta non debeat recipi," &c. The writer of this tract does not give the Latin, but, instead of it, supplies the following convenient translation.

* Though this observance has not been determined by any text of Scripture, yet it is established by custom, which doubtless is derived from Apostolic tradition.”. And again : "Let us examine, then, how far it is true, that an Apostolic tradition itself, unless it is written in Scripture, is inadmissible."

“The word Apostolic is TWICE interpolated without any sort of warrant from the original."

Mr. Fitzgerald also shews, that as Tertullian does not call them Apostolic" traditions, neither does he mean apostolic, but any custom by whomsoever introduced.

I will only add that Chillingworth long ago spoke of this passage in Tertullian, (see his great work, p 1, c. iii., $ 44). And he asks the significant question, “Who can secure us that human inventions, and such as came a quocunque traditore, might not, in a short time, gain the reputation of apostolic ?

How would Chillingworth's honest mind have revolted, could he have foreseen that members of his own Protestant Church would, to answer a purpose, foist in this very word " apostolical ” twice over, in å corrupt translation ?

Mr. Fitzgerald points out another instance of unfairness in the writer of the same of Tract, in quoting with great confidence a “ spurious” passage from S. Basil's Treatise on the Holy Spirit : a passage pronounced spurious by Erasmus and Bishop Stillingfleet.

I will not weary your readers. Let them read carefully for themselves the Tract No. 83, on Antichrist, comparing it with Bishop Newton and other good writers on the subject, and say if it is not full of art and subtlety. It reminds me of what Strype tells us took place at the Reformation. “The Romanists saw the tendency of this application (of the term Antichrist to the Pope), and accordingly, by fabulous and ridiculous stories, they endeavoured to cast a mist before men's eyes, that they should the less believe and understand the Pope to be him." Vol. I. p. 164.

Richard Baxter says that if the Pope be not Antichrist, he has ill luck in being so like him.

From all these false ways let us turn away. Go on, sir, in humility and truth to maintain the pure doctrine of our Church, and you will have the verdict of all honest men.

A. B. K. We ought perhaps to say-lest we should seem to contravene Proverbs xxvi. 2- that the writer of the above is in no way connected with our publication. With regard to the extract which he mentions from Pascal, the word “justification” occurs in Dr. Basil Kennett's translation ; but the Oxford Tract writers ought to have referred to the original, before they argued upon it. We happen to possess two modern versions-Mr. Craig's, published in

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1825, and Mr. Isaac Taylor's in 1838. Mr. Craig translates, or paraphrases, the words as follows:

“ If Jesus Christ had come only to sanctify and save, the whole of Scripture, and all other things, would bave tended to that object, and it would have been easy indeed to convince the intidel. But since, as Isaiah says, chap. viii. 14, he became both as a sanctuary (for salvation) and a rock of offence, we cannot expect to overcome the obstinacy of infidelity."

The author of the “ Natural History of Enthusiam,” Spiritual Despotism," and "Ancient Christianity,” translates :

“If Jesus Christ had come only for the purpose of redemption, the whole of Scripture, and all things else, would have co-operated to that end; and nothing would have been easier than to convince infidels: as however he came for a stone of stumbling and rock of offence, we cannot overcome their obduracy."

We cannot account for such discrepancies of rendering, except upon the supposition that the passage being considered obscure, each translator has thought himself at liberty to make it what he supposed it ought to be, not what he found it. Mr. Taylor could not by mere accident translate " tifier" by “redemption, or Mr. Craig interpolate the words “ to save.” Again : by what right, when Pascal's meaning, in his allusion to Isaiah viii.14, depends"upon the words used in the Latin Vulgate, “in sanctificationem," does Mr. Craig substitute King James's English version, “a sanctuary,” inserting in brackets, “for salvation.” And what is more astonishing still, how is it that Mr. Taylor actually omits what Pascal quotes about sanctification, and substitutes another part of the verse for it? The Vulgate runs, “ And He shall be to you for sanctification; also (autem) for a stone of stumbling and a rock of offence.” Whether “in sanctificationem” means for the sanctification of the believer; or that God should be for sanctification—that is, the object of holy worship-makes no difference in the present argument. The context clearly points our the latter; but Pascal seems to have used the words as they passed his mind without particular reference to the context; and so the Oxford Tract writer appears to interpret his meaning. If he did not so use them, but meant that Christ came to promote holy worship—though we do not see how the words detached will bear this signification-the argument, as we have said, is the same; or rather, is stronger on our side. In our further remarks, therefore, we will suppose that by "in sanctificationem” Pascal means, as we presume the Oxford Tractator interprets him, holiness generally, not merely the devout worship of God; but the reader may substitute the latter without damaging our remarks.

The Kennett version adopted by the Tractator, represents Pascal's meaning to be, in effect, that infidels would readily embrace religion if it were all privilege and no self-denial. There is some meaning in this, though we think not Pascal's meaning; for to make it Pascal's meaning, “ sanctification” in the the first sentence is obliged to be changed to "justification,” so as to form an antithesis with the “sanctification” in the second; and such a conjectural alteration of reading to suit an hypothesis is wholly unwarrantable. Mr. Taylor, by changing "sanctification" to "redemption,” seems to take nearly the same view of the passage; that is, as if Pascal meant to say that the love of sin is the parent of infidelity. Mr. Craig, by adding " and save" to " sanctify,” and translating the words from the Vulgate in the manner he does, renders the passage unintelligible. It appears to us that our correspondent takes the right view, though he does not explicate it. The distinction evidently lies between “sanctificationem" and "scandalum ;" and infidels, Pascal argues, would admit the former if it were not for the latter. Mr. Taylor, by omitting half Pascal's quotation, and substituting another clause for it, keeps out of sight the whole scope of the reasoning. The “scandalum” would, in New Testament language, be translated “the offence of the cross ;” and Pascal's argument we conceive to be that men would not object to the doctrine of "sanctification,”_whether our duty to man or the worship of God—but that the preaching of the cross is foolishness to them. They would, we know, object practically to “ sanctification,” in the elevated scriptural meaning of the word; and this is the objection of Antinomianism ; but the objection of speculative infidelity, which Pascal here refers to, is an objection to the doctrine of the atonement, including all that is implied in it; as the fallen and ruined condition of mankind; human weakness and misery; and the need of gratuitous justification and a vicarious sacrifice.

We would translate and paraphrase Pascal's words as follow :

“ If Jesus Christ had come only to sanctify men (or as the philosopher would say, to teach good morals) the whole Bible, and all things, would have tended to that object (there needed have been nothing about atonement and sacrifices, or the doctrines of grace), and it would have been easy to convince infidels (that a system merely inculcating sublime virtue—the reader may substitute if he will the worship of God—and containing no mysteries, and nothing at which man's erring pride revolts, was of Divine origin.) But since he came, as Isaiah declared, for a rock of offence [in relation to the atonement and justification) as well as for sanctification, we cannot overcome the opiniatedness of infidels.'

The infidel, urging his objection in Pascal's words, might say, " If you told me that Jesus Christ came as a Divine messenger, to inculcate the most elevated virtue and good morals-or to inculcate the worship of God—I would bow to his mission; but when you talk of sin original and actual; of guilt and impotency; of a propitiation, of an atonement, justification by faith, and I know not what other mysteries, I revolt from such doctrines.” The very next sentence proves that Pascal was speaking not of Antinomians, who would hold to an atonement if they might go on in their sins; but of proud self-willed men, who do not sincerely seek truth, and therefore are not in a disposition to be convinced; or within the scope of the promise, “ The meek will he guide in judgment; the meek will he teach his way.” That sentence is thus translated by Mr. Taylor :

“ But this Cour not being able to overcome their opiniatedness] is no argument against the truth of our sentiments; since we maintain that it is agreeable to the whole course of the Divine dispensations, that no convictions shall be produced in the minds of the self-willed, and those who are not sincere seekers of truth.”

It is obvious that this applies to infidels refusing to receive “justification,” not “sanctification;" and the next sentence corroborates this interpretation ; for the writer says that Christ came “to cure the sick, and to leave the whole to perish; to call sinners to repentance, and to justify them; to leave in their sins those who thought themselves righteous; to satisfy the needy, and to send the rich empty away.” The Oxford Tract reading reverses this meaning.

So again, Pascal had said in the opening of the chapter : “ It is the design of God to redeem mankind;” and he mentions various reasons why men will not accept the message of reconciliation. But the Oxford Tractators' adopted version reverses his argument, as though he had said, “ It is the design of God to sanctify mankind,” and had gone on to shew that men will not believe the doctrine because they hate holiness. This indeed is true; but it is not the particular truth which Pascal was exhibiting in this chapter; and his words CARIST. OBSERV. No. 29.

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must be mistranslated to sustain it. He had just before said, (Taylor's version): “ It is the design of God rather to rectify the will,” (that we may admit humbling views of our fallen and miserable condition) “ than to satisfy the understanding;"

;" * that is, to make the evidences of revelation so irresistible that the most self-conceited infidel must have confessed them to be irrefragable. “ In the absence,” says he, “ of obscurity, man could not be sensible of his fallen nuture; and were he left in total darkness, he would despair of a remedy.The remedy was the atonement. Assuredly all this points to the matter of “justification;" whereas the Oxford Tract implies the contrary; making God's object, and man's difficulty, to be about sanctification ; as if men felt no objection to the doctrines of grace; but were prompt to lay hold of the atonement of Christ, in order to evade“ working out their salvation with fear and trembling." True, we repeat, there is much of antinomianism in men's hearts; but is there no repugnance also to the doctrines of original and actual sin, and man's guilt and weakness; to Christ's all-sufficient sacrifice, and the renunciation of human merit?

The question before us is, What is it that Pascal is pointing out as the “scandalum,” the offence, or as St. Paul says, "foolishness?" Is it the doctrines of grace or the exhortations to holiness? Is it justification or sanctification? Does he describe men as revolting in the pride of perverted reason from the declaration that they are fallen beings, and need an atonement; or only as objecting to the hallowed duties of those who embrace the atonement? Is the stumbling-block that men are justified by faith; or that they are to keep the commandments of God ? Hear his own declaration : (Chapter ix. of most of the English editions; but the transpositions of chapters, the arbitrary omission of some, the division of the work into two parts in the modern enlarged French editions, whereas it was formerly numbered consecutively, and the whole book appearing in four or five forms, prevent any specific reference being given without naming the particular text, version, or edition.) He says, in Mr. Taylor's translation—which however is exceedingly faulty—the word “ raison,” which occurs twice in two lines, being in the first translated “reasonableness," instead of reason; and the word " explain,” to make out Mr. Taylor's, not Pascal's, sense being substituted for “ attain to :”

“ Original sin is foolishness in the sight of men. This we allow : [Pascal means, that the Bible sets it forth as such; so far from being an objection, it was the very way in which God meant it to appear ; 'mais on le donne pour tel.'] But let not the defect of reasonableness (reason) in this doctrine be objected to,

How is it that Mr. Taylor, who renovation ; Mr. Taylor admits the formust be abundantly able to enter into mer, but virtually denies the latter. If the spirit of Pascal, so frequently di- not, why did he refuse to say, with Paslutes and so often mistranslates bim? cal, “rectify” the understanding as well There is nothing that corresponds as the will? We need as much to pray with “to satisfy” as distinguished from that God would "give us a right judg“to rectify" in the original, which is ment,' as that he would renew our afa concise and antithetical : "Le dessein fections. de Dieu est plus de perfectionner la We have looked to the title page and volonté que l'esprit?" Nay, the trans- the Introductory Essay, thinking it poslation is a perversion of Pascal's meaning; sible that the translation might not be which is that the design of God is to from Mr. Taylor's own pen; but there give man a right understanding, which is no notification of this kind; and the he had lost by the fall ; and not to lower title-page expressly states that the new his revelation to its perverted taste. translation, the original memoir, and the Pascal means that the intellect as well introductory essay, are “by Isaac as the heart of corrupted man requires Taylor, Esq."

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