The Project Gutenberg EBook of Church History, Vol. 3 of 3 by J. H. Kurtz
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Title: Church History, Vol. 3 of 3 Author: J. H. Kurtz Release Date: September 11, 2011 [Ebook #37404] Language: English Character set encoding: UTF-8 ***START OF THE PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK CHURCH HISTORY, VOL. 3 OF 3***
Professor J. H. Kurtz
Authorized Translation From Latest Revised Edition by the
Rev. John MacPherson, M.A.
In Three Volumes. Vol. III.
London: Hodder and Stoughton
The papacy formed new plans for conquest in the domain of the Eastern church, but with at most only transient success. Still more illusory were the hopes entertained for a while in Geneva and London in regard to the Calvinizing of the Greek church.
1. Roman Catholic Hopes.—The Jesuit missions among the Turks and schismatic Greeks failed, but among the Abyssinians some progress was made. By promising Spanish aid, the Jesuit Paez succeeded, in a.d. 1621, in inducing the Sultan Segued to abjure the Jacobite heresy. Mendez was made Abyssinian patriarch by Urban VIII. in a.d. 1626, but the clergy and people repeatedly rebelled against sultan and patriarch. In a.d. 1642 the next sultan drove the Jesuits out of his kingdom, and in it henceforth no traces of Catholicism were to be found.—In Russia the false Demetrius, in a.d. 1605, working in Polish Catholic interests, sought to catholicize the empire; but this only convinced the Russians that he was no true czar's son. When his Catholic Polish bride entered Moscow with 200 Poles, a riot ensued, in which Demetrius lost his life.1
2. Calvinistic Hopes.—Cyril Lucar, a native of Crete, then under Venetian rule, by long residence in Geneva had come to entertain a strong liking to the Reformed church. Expelled from his situation [pg 002] as rector of a Greek seminary at Ostrog by Jesuit machinations, he was made Patriarch of Alexandria in a.d. 1602 and of Constantinople in a.d. 1621. He maintained a regular correspondence with Reformed divines in Holland, Switzerland, and England. In a.d. 1628 he sent the famous Codex Alexandrinus as a present to James I. He wrought expressly for a union of the Greek and Reformed churches, and for this end sent, in a.d. 1629, to Geneva an almost purely Calvinistic confession. But the other Greek bishops opposed his union schemes, and influential Jesuits in Constantinople accused him of political faults. Four times the sultan deposed and banished him, and at last, in a.d. 1638, he was strangled as a traitor and cast into the sea.—One of his Alexandrian clergy, Metrophanes Critopulus, whom in a.d. 1616 he had sent for his education to England, studied several years at Oxford, then at German Protestant universities, ending with Helmstadt, where, in a.d. 1625, he composed in Greek a confession of the faith of the Greek Orthodox Church. It was pointedly antagonistic to the Romish doctrine, conciliatory toward Protestantism, while abandoning nothing essential in the Greek Orthodox creed, and showing signs of the possession of independent speculative power. Afterwards Metrophanes became Patriarch of Alexandria, and in the synod, presided over by Lucar's successor, Cyril of Berrhoë, at Constantinople in a.d. 1638, gave his vote for the formal condemnation of the man who had been already executed.2
3. Orthodox Constancy.—The Russian Orthodox church, after its emancipation from Constantinople and the erection of an independent patriarchate at Moscow in a.d. 1589 (§ 73, 4), had decidedly the pre-eminence over the Greek Orthodox church, and the Russian czar took the place formerly occupied by the East Roman emperor as protector of the whole Orthodox church. The dangers to the Orthodox faith threatened by schemes of union with Catholics and Protestants induced the learned metropolitan, Peter Mogilas of Kiev, to compose a new confession in catechetical form, which, in a.d. 1643, was formally authorized by the Orthodox patriarchs as Ὀρθόδοξος ὁμολογία τῆς καθολικῆς καὶ ἀποστολικῆς ἐκκλησίας τῆς ἀνατολικῆς.—Thirty years later a controversy on the eucharist broke out between the Jansenists Nicole and Arnauld, on the one side, and the Calvinists Claude and Jurieu, on the other (§ 157, 1), in which both claimed to be in agreement with the Greek church. A synod was convened under Dositheus of Jerusalem in a.d. 1672, at the instigation of French diplomatists, where the questions raised by Cyril were again taken into consideration. [pg 003] Maintaining a friendly attitude toward the Romish church, it directed a violent polemic against Calvinism. In order to save the character of the Constantinopolitan chair for constant Orthodoxy, Cyril's confession of a.d. 1629 was pronounced a spurious, heretical invention, and a confession composed by Dositheus, in which Cyril's Calvinistic heresies were repudiated, was incorporated with the synod's acts.
The Jesuit counter-reformation (§ 151) was eminently successful during the first decades of the century in Bohemia. The Westphalian Peace restrained its violence, but did not prevent secret machinations and the open exercise of all conceivable arts of seduction. Next to the conversion of Bohemia, the greatest triumph of the restoration was won in France in the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes. Besides such victories the Catholics were able to glory in the conversion of several Protestant princes. New endeavours at union were repeatedly made, but these in every case proved as fruitless as former attempts had done.
1. Conversions of Protestant Princes.—The first reigning prince who became a convert to Romanism was the Margrave James III. of Baden. He went over in a.d. 1590 (§ 144, 4), but as his death occurred soon after, his conduct had little influence upon his people. Of greater consequence was the conversion, in a.d. 1614, of the Count-palatine Wolfgang William of Neuburg, as it prepared the way for the catholicizing of the whole Palatinate, which followed in a.d. 1685. Much was made of the passing over to the Catholic church of Christina of Sweden, the highly gifted but eccentric daughter of Gustavus Adolphus. As she had resigned the crown, the pope gained no political advantage from his new member, and Alexander VII. had even to contribute to her support. The Elector of Saxony, Frederick Augustus II., passed over to the Roman Catholic church in a.d. 1697, in order to qualify himself for the Polish crown; but the rights of his Protestant subjects were carefully guarded. An awkwardness arose from the fact that the prince was pledged by the directory of the Regensburg Diet of a.d. 1653 to care for the interests of the evangelical church. Now that he had become a Catholic, he still formally promised to do so, but had his duties discharged by a commissioner. Subsequently this officer [pg 004] was ordered to take his directions from the evangelical council of Dresden.
2. The Restoration in Germany and the Neighbouring States (§ 151, 1).—Matthias having, in violation of the royal letter of his predecessor Rudolph II. (§ 139, 19), refused to allow the Protestants of Bohemia to build churches, was driven out; the Jesuits also were expelled, and the Calvinistic Elector-palatine Frederick V. was chosen as prince in a.d. 1619. Ferdinand II. (a.d. 1619-1637) defeated him, tore up the royal letter, restored the Jesuits, and expelled the Protestant pastors. Efforts were made by Christian IV. of Denmark and other Protestant princes to save Protestantism, but without success. Ferdinand now issued his Restitution Edict of a.d. 1629, which deprived Protestants of their privileges, and gave to Catholic nobles unrestricted liberty to suppress the evangelical faith in their dominions. It was then that Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden, in religious not less than political interests, made his appearance as the saviour of Protestantism.3 The unhappy war was brought to an end in a.d. 1648 by the publication at Münster and Osnabrück of the Peace of Westphalia, which Innocent X. in his bull “Zelo Domus Dei” of a.d. 1651 pronounced “null and void, without influence on past, present, and future.” Germany lost several noble provinces, but its intellectual and religious freedom was saved. Under Swedish and French guarantee the Augsburg Religious Peace was confirmed and even extended to the Reformed, as related to the Augsburg Confession. The church property was to be restored on January 1st, a.d. 1624. The political equality of Protestants and Catholics throughout Germany was distinctly secured. In Bohemia, however, Protestantism was thoroughly extirpated, and in the other Austrian states the oppression continued down to the time of Joseph II. In Silesia, from the passing of the Restitution Edict, over a thousand churches had been violently taken from the evangelicals. No compensation was now thought of, but rather the persecution continued throughout the whole century (§ 165, 4), and many thousands were compelled to migrate, for the most part to Upper Lusatia.
3. Also in Livonia, from a.d. 1561 under Polish rule, the Jesuits gained a footing and began the restoration, but under Gustavus Adolphus from a.d. 1621 their machinations were brought to an end.—The ruthless Valteline Massacre of a.d. 1620 may be described as a Swiss St. Bartholomew on a small scale. All Protestants were murdered in one day. The conspirators at a signal from the clock tower [pg 005] in the early morning broke into the houses of heretics, and put all to death, down to the very babe in the cradle. Between four and five hundred were slaughtered.—In Hungary, at the close of the preceding century only three noble families remained Catholic, and the Protestant churches numbered 2,000; but the Jesuits, who had settled there under the protection of Rudolph II. in 1579, resumed their intrigues, and the Archbishop of Gran, Pazmany, wrought hard for the restoration of Catholicism. Rakoczy of Transylvania, in the Treaty of Linz of a.d. 1645, concluded a league offensive and defensive with Sweden and France, which secured political and religious liberty for Hungary; but of the 400 churches of which the Protestants had been robbed only ninety were given back. The bigoted Leopold I., from a.d. 1655 king of Hungary, inaugurated a yet more severe persecution, which continued until the publication of the Toleration Edict of Joseph II. in a.d. 1781. The 2,000 Protestant congregations were by this time reduced to 105.
4. The Huguenots in France (§ 139, 17).—Henry IV. faithfully fulfilled the promises which he made in the Edict of Nantes; but under Louis XIII., a.d. 1610-1643, the oppressions of the Huguenots were renewed, and led to fresh outbreaks. Richelieu withdrew their political privileges, but granted them religious toleration in the Edict of Nismes, a.d. 1629. Louis XIV., a.d. 1643-1715, at the instigation of his confessors, sought to atone for his sins by purging his land of heretics. When bribery and court favour had done all that they could do in the way of conversions, the fearful dragonnades began, a.d. 1681. The formal Revocation of the Edict of Nantes followed in a.d. 1685, and persecution raged with the utmost violence. Thousands of churches were torn down, vast numbers of confessors were tortured, burnt, or sent to the galleys. In spite of the terrible penal laws against emigrating, in spite of the watch kept over the frontiers, hundreds of thousands escaped, and were received with open arms as refugees in Brandenburg, Holland, England, Denmark, and Switzerland. Many fled into the wilds of the Cevennes, where under the name of Camisards they maintained a heroic conflict for years, until at last exterminated by an army at least ten times their strength. The struggle reached the utmost intensity of bitterness on both sides in a.d. 1702, when the fanatical and inhumanly cruel inquisitor, the Abbé du Chaila, was slain. At the head of the Camisard army was a young peasant, Jean Cavalier, who by his energetic and skilful conduct of the campaign astonished the world. At last the famous Marshal Villars, by promising a general amnesty, release of all prisoners, permission to emigrate with possessions, and religious toleration to those who remained, succeeded in persuading Cavalier to lay down his arms. The king ratified this bargain, only refusing the right of [pg 006] religious freedom. Many, however, submitted; while others emigrated, mostly to England. Cavalier entered the king's service as colonel; but distrusting the arrangements fled to Holland, and afterwards to England, where in a.d. 1740 he died as governor of Jersey. In a.d. 1707 a new outbreak took place, accompanied by prophetic fanaticism, in consequence of repeated dragonnades, but it was put down by the stake, the gallows, the axe, and the wheel. France had lost half a million of her most pious, industrious, and capable inhabitants, and yet two millions of Huguenots deprived of all their rights remained in the land.4
5. The Waldensians in Piedmont (§ 139, 25).—Although in a.d. 1654 the Duke of Savoy confirmed to the Waldensians their privileges, by Easter of the following year a bloody persecution broke out, in which a Piedmontese army, together with a horde of released prisoners and Irish refugees, driven from their native land by Cromwell's severities, to whom the duke had given shelter in the valleys, perpetrated the most horrible cruelties. Yet in the desperate conflict the Waldensians held their ground. The intervention of the Protestant Swiss cantons won for them again a measure of toleration, and liberal gifts from abroad compensated them for their loss of property. Cromwell too sent to the relief of the sufferers the celebrated Lord Morland in a.d. 1658. While in the valleys he got possession of a number of MSS. (§ 108, 11), which he took home with him and deposited in the Cambridge Library. In a.d. 1685 the persecution and civil war were again renewed at the instigation of Louis XIV. The soldiers besieged the valleys, and more than 14,000 captives were consigned to fortresses and prisons. But the rest of the Waldensians plucked up courage, inflicted many defeats upon their enemy, and so moved the government in a.d. 1686 to release the prisoners and send them out of the country. Some found their way to Germany, others fled to Switzerland. These last, aided by Swiss troops, and led by their own pastor, Henry Arnaud, made an attack upon Piedmont in a.d. 1689, and conquered again their own country. They continued in possession, notwithstanding all attempts to dislodge them.
6. The Catholics in England and Ireland.—When James I., a.d. 1603-1625, the son of Mary Stuart, ascended the English throne (§ 139, 11), the Catholics expected from him nothing short of the complete restoration of the old religion. But great as James' inclination towards [pg 007] Catholicism may have been, his love of despotic authority was still greater. He therefore rigorously suppressed the Jesuits, who disputed the royal supremacy over the church; and the bitterness of the Catholics now reached its height. They organized the so-called Gunpowder Plot, with the intention of blowing up the royal family and the whole Parliament at the first meeting of the house. At the head of the conspiracy stood Rob. Catesby, Thomas Percy of Northumberland, and Guy Fawkes, an English officer in the Spanish service. The plan was discovered shortly before the day appointed for its execution. On November 5th, a.d. 1605, Fawkes, with lantern and matches, was seized in the cellar. The rest of the conspirators fled, but, after a desperate struggle, in which Catesby and Percy fell, were arrested, and, together with two Jesuit accomplices, executed as traitors. Great severities were then exercised toward the Catholics, not only in England, but also in Ireland, where the bulk of the population was attached to the Romish faith. James I. completed the transference of ecclesiastical property to the Anglican church, and robbed the Irish nobles of almost all their estates, and gifted them over to Scottish and English favourites. All Catholics, because they refused to take the oath of supremacy, i.e. to recognise the king as head of the church, were declared ineligible for any civil office. These oppressions at last led to the fearful Irish massacre. In October, a.d. 1641, a desperate outbreak of the Catholics took place throughout the country. It aimed at the destruction of all Protestants in Ireland. The conspirators rushed from all sides into the houses of the Protestants, murdered the inhabitants, and drove them naked and helpless from their homes. Many thousands died on the roadside of hunger and cold. In other places they were driven in crowds into the rivers and drowned, or into empty houses, which were burnt over them. The number of those who suffered is variously estimated from 40,000 to 400,000. Charles I., a.d. 1625-1649, was suspected as instigator of this terrible deed, and it may be regarded as his first step toward the scaffold (§ 155, 1). After the execution of Charles, Oliver Cromwell, in a.d. 1649, at the call of Parliament, took fearful revenge for the Irish crime. In the two cities which he took by storm he had all the citizens cut down without distinction. Panic-stricken, the inhabitants of the other cities fled to the bogs. Within nine months the whole island was reconquered. Hundreds of thousands, driven from their native soil, wandered as homeless fugitives, and their lands were divided among English soldiers and settlers. During the time of the English Commonwealth, a.d. 1649-1660, all moderate men, even those who had formerly demanded religious toleration, not only for all Christian sects, but also for Jews and Mohammedans, and even atheists, were now at one in excluding Catholics from its benefit, [pg 008] because they all saw in the Catholics a party ready at any moment to prove traitors to their country at the bidding of a foreign sovereign.—The Restoration under Charles II. could not greatly ameliorate the calamities of the Irish. Religious persecution indeed ceased, but the property taken from the Catholic church and native owners still remained in the hands of the Anglican church and the Protestant occupiers. To counterbalance the Catholic proclivities of Charles II. (§ 155, 3), the English Parliament of a.d. 1673 passed the Test Act, which required every civil and military officer to take the test oaths, condemning transubstantiation and the worship of the saints, and to receive the communion according to the Anglican rite as members of the State church. The statements of a certain Titus Oates, that the Jesuits had organized a plot for murdering the king and restoring the papacy, led to fearful riots in a.d. 1678 and many executions. But the reports were seemingly unfounded, and were probably the fruit of an intrigue to deprive the king's Catholic brother, James II., of the right of succession. When James ascended the throne, in a.d. 1685, he immediately entered into negotiations with Rome, and filled almost all offices with Catholics. At the invitation of the Protestants, the king's son-in-law, William III. of Orange, landed in England in a.d. 1688, and on James' flight was declared king by the Parliament. The Act of Toleration, issued by him in a.d. 1689, still withheld from Papists the privileges now extended to Protestant dissenters (§ 155, 3).5
7. Union Efforts.—(1) Although Hugo Grotius distinctly took the side of the Remonstrants (§ 160, 2), his whole disposition was essentially irenical. He attempted, but in vain, not only the reconciliation of the Arminians and Calvinists, but also the union of all Protestant sects on a common basis. Toward Catholicism he long maintained a decidedly hostile attitude. But through intimate intercourse with distinguished Catholics, especially during his exile in France, his feelings were completely changed. He now invariably expressed himself more favourably in regard to the faith and the institutions of the Catholic church. Its semi-Pelagianism was acceptable to him as a decided Arminian. In his “Votum pro Pace” he recommended as the only possible way to restore ecclesiastical union, a return to Catholicism, on the understanding that a thorough reform should be made. But that he was himself ready to pass over, and was hindered only by his sudden death in a.d. 1645, is merely an illusion of [pg 009] Romish imagination.6—(2) King Wladislaus IV. of Poland thought a union of Protestants and Catholics in his dominions not impossible, and with this end in view arranged the Religious Conference of Thorn in a.d. 1645. Prussia and Brandenburg were also invited to take part in it. The elector sent his court preacher, John Berg, and asked from the Duke of Brunswick the assistance of the Helmstadt theologian, George Calixt. The chief representatives of the Lutheran side were Abraham Calov, of Danzig, and John Hülsemann, of Wittenberg. That Calixt, a Lutheran, took the part of the Reformed, intensified the bitterness of the Lutherans at the outset. The result was to increase the split on all sides. The Reformed set forth their opinions in the “Declaratio Thorunensis,” which in Brandenburg obtained symbolical rank.—(3) J. B. Bossuet, who died in a.d. 1704, Bishop of Meaux, used all his eloquence to prepare a way for the return of Protestants to the church in which alone is salvation. In several treatises he gave an idealized exposition of the Catholic doctrine, glossed over what was most offensive to Protestants, and sought by subtlety and sophistry to represent the Protestant system as contradictory and untenable.7 During the same period the Spaniard Spinola, Bishop of Neustadt, who had come into the country as father confessor of the empress, proposed a scheme of union at the imperial court. The controverted points were to be decided at a free council, but the primacy of the pope and the hierarchical system, as founded jure humano, were to be retained. In prosecuting his scheme, with the secret support of Leopold I., Spinola, between a.d. 1676 and 1691, travelled through all Protestant Germany. He found most success, out of respect for the emperor, in Hanover, where the Abbot of Loccum, Molanus, zealously advocated the proposed union, in which on the Catholic side Bossuet, on the Protestant side the great philosopher Leibnitz, took part. But the negotiations ended in no practical result. That Leibnitz had himself been already secretly inclined to Catholicism, some think to have proved by a manuscript, found after his death, entitled in another's hand, “Systema Theologicum Leibnitii.” Favourably disposed as Leibnitz was to investigate and recognise what was profound and true even in Catholicism, so that he reached the conviction that neither of the two churches had given perfect and adequate expression to Christian truth, he has apparently sought in this work to make [pg 010] clear to himself what and how much of specifically Catholic doctrines were justifiable, and to sketch out a system of doctrine occupying a place superior to both confessions. In this treatise many doctrines are expressed in a manner quite divergent from that of the Tridentine creed, while several expressions show how clearly he perceived the contradiction between his own Protestant faith and the Romish system, amid all his attempts to effect a reconciliation.
8. The Lehnin Prophecy.—The hope entertained, about the end of the seventeenth century, by Catholics throughout Germany of the speedy restoration of the mother church was expressed in the so called Vaticinium Lehninense. Professedly composed in the thirteenth century by a monk called Hermann, of the cloister of Lehnin in Brandenburg, it characterized with historical accuracy in 100 Leonine verses the Brandenburg princes down to Frederick III., of whose coronation in a.d. 1701 it is ignorant, and after this proceeds in a purely fanciful and arbitrary manner. From Joachim II., who openly joined the Reformation, it enumerates eleven members, so that the history is just brought down to Frederick William III. With the eleventh the Hohenzollern dynasty ends, Germany is united, the Catholic church restored, and Lehnin raised again to its ancient glory. Under Frederick William IV., the Catholics diligently sought to prove the genuineness of the prophecy, and by arbitrary methods to extend it so as to include this prince. Lately “the deadly sin of Israel” spoken of in it has been pointed to as a prophecy of the Kulturkampf of our own day (§ 197). The first certain trace of the poem is in a.d. 1693. Hilgenfeld thinks that its author was a fanatical pervert, Andr. Fromm, who was previously a Protestant pastor in Berlin, and died in a.d. 1685 as canon of Leitmeritz, in Bohemia.
The Reformed church made its way into the heart of Lutheran Germany (§ 144) by the Calvinizing of Hesse-Cassel and Lippe, and by the adherence of the electoral house of Brandenburg. Renewed attempts to unite the two churches were equally fruitless with the endeavours after a Catholic-Protestant union.
1. Calvinizing of Hesse-Cassel, a.d. 1605-1646.—Philip the Magnanimous, died 1567, left to his eldest son, William IV., one half of his territories, comprising Lower Hesse and Schmalcald, with residence at Cassel; to Louis IV. a fourth part, viz. Upper Hesse, with residence at Marburg; while his two youngest sons, Philip and George, were [pg 011] made counts, with their residence at Darmstadt. Philip died in 1583 and Louis in 1604, both childless; in consequence of which the greater part of Philip's territory and the northern half of Upper Hesse with Marburg fell to Hesse-Cassel, and the southern half with Giessen to Hesse-Darmstadt.—Landgrave William IV. of Hesse-Cassel sympathised with his father's union and levelling tendencies, and by means of general synods wrought eagerly to secure acceptance for them throughout Hesse by setting aside the ubiquitous Christology (§ 142, 9) and the Formula of Concord, while firmly maintaining the Corpus Doctrinæ Philippicum (§ 142, 10). The fourth and last of those general synods was held in 1582. Further procedure was meanwhile rendered impossible by the increase of opposition. For, on the one hand, Louis IV., under the influence of the acute and learned but contentious Ægidius Hunnius, professor of theology at Marburg, 1576-1592, became more and more decidedly a representative of exclusive Lutheranism; and, on the other hand, William's Calvinizing schemes became from day to day more reckless. His son and successor Maurice went forward more energetically along the same lines as his father, especially after the death of his uncle Louis in 1604, who bequeathed to him the Marburg part of his territories. These had been given him on condition that he should hold by the confession and its apology as guaranteed by Charles V. in 1530. But in 1605 he forbad the Marburg theologians to set forth the ubiquity theology; and when they protested, issued a formal prohibition of the dogma with its presuppositions and consequences, and insisted on the introduction of the Reformed numbering of the commandments of the decalogue, and the breaking of bread at the communion, and the removal of the remaining images from the churches (§ 144, 2). The theologians again protested, and were deprived of their offices. The result was the outbreak of a popular tumult at Marburg, which Maurice suppressed by calling in the military. When in several places in Upper and even in Lower Hesse opposition was persisted in, and the resisting clergy could not be won over either by persuasion and threatening or by persecution, Maurice in 1607 convened consultative diocesan synods at Cassel, Eschwege, Marburg, St. Goar, and soon after a general synod at Cassel, which, giving expression on all points to the will of the landgrave, drew up, besides a new hymnbook and catechism, a new “Christian and correct confession of faith,” by which they openly and decidedly declared their attachment to the Reformed church. Soon Hesse accepted these conclusions, but not the rest of the state, where the opposition of the nobles, clergy, and people, in spite of all attempts to enforce this acceptance by military power, imprisonment, and deposition, could not be altogether overcome.—Meanwhile George's son and successor, Louis V., 1596-1626, had been eagerly seeking to make capital [pg 012] of those troubles in his cousin's domains in favour of the Darmstadt dynasty. He gave his protection to the professors expelled from Marburg in 1605, founded in 1607 a Lutheran university at Giessen, and made accusations against his cousin before the imperial supreme court, which in 1623, on the basis of the will of Louis IV. and the Religious Peace of Augsburg (§ 137, 5), declared the inheritance forfeited, and entrusted the electors of Cologne and Saxony with the execution of the sentence. These in conjunction with the troops of the league under Tilly attacked Upper and Lower Hesse; the Lutheran University of Giessen was transferred to Marburg, and Upper Hesse, after the banishment of the Reformed pastors, went over wholly to the Lutheran confession. Maurice, completely broken down, resigned in favour of his son William V., who was obliged to make an agreement, according to which he made over Upper Hesse, Schmalcald, and Katzenelnbogen to George II. of Hesse-Darmstadt, the successor of Louis V. In consequence of his attachment to Gustavus Adolphus in the Thirty Years' War the ban of the empire was pronounced upon William. He died in 1637. His widow, Amalie Elizabeth, undertook the government on behalf of her young son William VI., and in 1646, after repeated victories over George's troops, made a new agreement with him, by which the territories taken away in 1627 were restored to Hesse-Cassel, under a guarantee, however, that the status quo in matters of religion should be preserved, and that they should continue predominantly Lutheran. The university property was divided; Giessen obtained a Lutheran, Marburg a Reformed institution, and Lower Hesse received a moderately but yet essentially Reformed ecclesiastical constitution.
2. Calvinizing of Lippe, a.d. 1602.—Count Simon VI. of Lippe, in his eventful life, was brought into close relations with the Reformed Netherlands and with Maurice of Hesse. His dominions were thoroughly Lutheran, but from a.d. 1602 Calvinism was gradually introduced under the patronage of the prince. The chief promoter of this innovation was Dreckmeyer, chosen general superintendent in a.d. 1599. At a visitation of churches in a.d. 1602, the festivals of Mary and the apostles, exorcism, the sign of the cross, the host, burning candles, and Luther's catechism were rejected. Opposing pastors were deposed, and Calvinists put in their place. The city Lemgo stood out longest, and persevered in its adherence to the Lutheran confession during an eleven years' struggle with its prince, from a.d. 1606 to 1617. After the death of Simon VI., his successor, Simon VII., allowed the city the free exercise of its Lutheran religion.
3. The Elector of Brandenburg becomes Calvinist, a.d. 1613.—John Sigismund, a.d. 1608-1619, had promised his grandfather, John George, to maintain his connexion with the Lutheran church. But his own inclination, [pg 013] which was strengthened by his son's marriage with a princess of the Palatinate, and his connexion with the Netherlands, made him forget his promise. Also his court preacher, the crypto-Calvinist Solomon Fink, contributed to the same result. On Christmas Day, a.d. 1613, he went over to the Reformed church. In order to share in the Augsburg Peace, he still retained the Augsburg Confession, naturally in the form known as the Variata. In a.d. 1624, he issued a Calvinist confession of his own, the Confessio Sigismundi or Marchica, which sought to reconcile the universality of grace with the particularity of election (§ 168, 1). His people, however, did not follow the prince, not even his consort, Anne of Prussia. The court preacher, Gedicke, who would not retract his invectives against the prince and the Reformed confession, was obliged to flee from Berlin, as also another preacher, Mart. Willich. But when altars, images, and baptismal fonts were thrown out of the Berlin churches, a tumult arose, in a.d. 1615, which was not suppressed without bloodshed. In the following year the elector forbade the teaching of the communicatio idiomatum and the ubiquitas corporis (§ 141, 9) at the University of Frankfort-on-the-Oder. In a.d. 1614, owing to the publication of a keen controversial treatise of Hutter (§ 158, 5) he forbade any of his subjects going to the University of Wittenberg, and soon afterwards struck out the Formula of Concord from the collection of the symbolical books of the Lutheran church of his realm.—Continuation, § 169, 1.
4. Union Attempts.—Hoë von Hoënegg, of an old Austrian family, was from a.d. 1612 chief court preacher at Dresden, and as spiritual adviser of the elector, John George, on the outbreak of the Thirty Years' War, got Lutheran Saxony to take the side of the Catholic emperor against the Calvinist Frederick V. of the Palatinate, elected king of Bohemia. In a.d. 1621, he had proved that “on ninety-nine points the Calvinists were in accord with the Arians and the Turks.” At the Religious Conference of Leipzig of a.d. 1631 a compromise was accepted on both sides; but no practical result was secured. The Religious Conference of Cassel, in a.d. 1661, was a well meant endeavour by some Marburg Reformed theologians and Lutherans of the school of Calixt (§ 158, 2); but owing to the agitation caused by the Synergist controversy, no important advance toward union could be accomplished. The union efforts of Duke William of Brandenburg, a.d. 1640-1688, were opposed by Paul Gerhardt, preacher in the church of St. Nicholas in Berlin. On refusing to abstain from attacks on the Reformed doctrine he was deposed from his office. He was soon appointed pastor at Lübben in Lusatia, where he died in a.d. 1676.—The most zealous apostle of universal Protestant union, embracing even the Anglican church, was the Scottish Presbyterian John Durie. From a.d. 1628 when he officiated as pastor of an English colony at Elbing, [pg 014] till his death at Cassel in a.d. 1640, he devoted his energies unweariedly to this one task. He repeatedly travelled through Germany, Sweden, Denmark, England, and the Netherlands, formed acquaintance with clerical and civil authorities, had intercourse with them by word and letter, published a multitude of tracts on this subject; but at last could only look back with bitter complaints over the lost labours of a lifetime.8—Continuation, § 169, 1.
On the outbreak of the English Revolution, occasioned by the despotism of the first two Stuarts, crowds of Puritan exiles returned from Holland and North America to their old home. They powerfully strengthened their secret sympathisers in their successful struggle against the episcopacy of the State church (§ 131, 6); but, breaking up into rival parties, as Presbyterians and Independents (§ 143, 3, 4), gave way to fanatical extravagances. The victorious party of Independents also split into two divisions: the one, after the old Dutch style, simple and strict believers in Scripture; the other, first in Cromwell's army, fanatical enthusiasts and visionary saints (§ 161, 1). The Restoration, under the last two Stuarts, sought to re-introduce Catholicism. It was William of Orange, by his Act of Toleration of a.d. 1689, who first brought to a close the Reformation struggles within the Anglican church. It guaranteed, indeed, all the [pg 015] pre-eminent privileges of an establishment to the Anglican and Episcopal church, but also granted toleration to dissenters, while refusing it to Catholics.
1. The First Two Stuarts.—James I., dominated by the idea of the royal supremacy, and so estranged from the Presbyterianism in which he was brought up (§ 139, 11), as king of England, a.d. 1603-1625, attached himself to the national Episcopal church, persecuted the English Puritans, so that many of them again fled to Holland (§ 143, 4), and forced Episcopacy upon the Scotch. Charles I., a.d. 1625-1649, went beyond his father in theory and practice, and thus incurred the hatred of his Protestant subjects. William Laud, from a.d. 1633 Archbishop of Canterbury, was the recklessly zealous promoter of his despotic ideas, representing the Episcopacy, by reason of its Divine institution and apostolic succession, as the foundation of the church and the pillar of an absolute monarchy. Laud used his position as primate to secure the introduction of his own theory into the public church services, among other things making the communion office an imitation as near as possible of the Romish mass. But when he attempted to force upon the Scotch such “Baal-worship” by the command of the king, they formed a league in a.d. 1638 for the defence of Presbyterianism, the so called Great Covenant, and emphasised their demand by sending an army into England. The king, who had ruled for eleven years without a Parliament, was obliged now to call together the representatives of the people. Scarcely had the Long Parliament, a.d. 1640-1653, in which the Puritan element was supreme, pacified the Scotch, than oil was anew poured on the flames by the Irish massacre of a.d. 1641 (§ 153, 6). The Lower House, in spite of the persistent opposition of the court, resolved on excluding the bishops from the Upper House and formally abolishing Episcopacy; and in a.d. 1643, summoned the Westminster Assembly to remodel the organization of the English church, at which Scotch representatives were to have a seat. After long and violent debates with an Independent minority, till a.d. 1648, the Assembly drew up a Presbyterian constitution with a Puritan service, and in the Westminster Confession a strictly Calvinistic creed. But only in Scotland were these decisions heartily accepted. In England, notwithstanding their confirmation by the Parliament, they received only partial and occasional acceptance, owing to the prevalence of Independent opinions among the people.—Since a.d. 1642, the tension between court and Parliament had brought about the Civil War between Cavaliers and Roundheads. In a.d. 1645, the royal troops were cut to pieces at Naseby by the parliamentary army under Fairfax and Cromwell. The king fled to [pg 016] the Scotch, by whom he was surrendered to the English Parliament in a.d. 1647. But when now the fanatical Independents, who formed a majority in the army, began to terrorise the Parliament, it opened negotiations for peace with the king. He was now ready to make almost any sacrifice, only on religious and conscientious grounds he could not agree to the unconditional abandonment of Episcopacy. Even the Scotch, whose Presbyterianism was now threatened by the Independents, as before it had been by the Episcopalians, longed for the restoration of royalty, and to aid in this sent an army into England in a.d. 1648. But they were defeated by Cromwell, who then dismissed the Parliament and had all its Presbyterian members either imprisoned or driven into retirement. The Independent remnant, known as the Rump Parliament, a.d. 1648-1653, tried the king for high treason and sentenced him to death. On January 30th, a.d. 1649, he mounted the scaffold, on which Archbishop Laud had preceded him in a.d. 1645, and fell under the executioner's axe.10
2. The Commonwealth and the Protector.—Ireland had never yet atoned for its crime of a.d. 1641 (§ 153, 6), and as it refused to acknowledge the Commonwealth, Cromwell took terrible revenge in a.d. 1649. In a.d. 1650 at Dunbar, and in a.d. 1651 at Worcester, he completely destroyed the army of the Scots, who had crowned Charles II., son of the executed king, drove out, in April a.d. 1653, the Rump of the Long Parliament, which had come to regard itself as a permanent institution, and in July opened, with a powerful speech, two hours in length, on God's ways and judgments, the Short or Barebones' Parliament, composed of “pious and God-fearing men” selected by himself. In this new Parliament which, with prayer and psalm-singing, wrought hard at the re-organization of the executive, the bench, and the church, the two parties of Independents were represented, the fanatical enthusiasts indeed predominating, and so victorious in all matters of debate. To this party Cromwell himself belonged. His attachment to it, however, was considerably cooled in consequence of the excesses of the Levellers (§ 161, 2), and the fantastic policy of the parliamentarian Saints disgusted him more and more. When therefore, on December 12th, a.d. 1653, after five months' fruitless opposition to the radical demands of the extravagant majority, all the most moderate members of the Parliament had resigned their seats and returned their mandates into Cromwell's hands, he burst in upon [pg 017] the psalm-singing remnant with his soldiers, and entered upon his life-long office of the Protector of the Commonwealth with a new constitution. He proclaimed toleration of all religious sects, Catholics only being excepted on political grounds (§ 153, 6), giving equal rights to Presbyterians, and offering no hindrance to the revival of Episcopacy. He yet remained firmly attached to his early convictions. He believed in a kingdom of the saints embracing the whole earth, and looked on England as destined for the protection and spread of Protestantism. Zürich greeted him as the great Protestant champion, and he showed himself in this rôle in the valleys of Piedmont (§ 153, 5), in France, in Poland, and in Silesia. He joined with all Protestant governments into a league, offensive and defensive, against fanatical attempts of Papists to recover their lost ground. When Spain and France sued for his alliance, he made it a condition with the former that, besides allowing free trade with the West Indies, it should abolish the Inquisition; and of France he required an assurance that the rights of Huguenots should be respected. And when in Germany a new election of emperor was to take place, he urged the great electors that they should by no means allow the imperial throne to continue with the Catholic house of Austria. Meanwhile his path at home was a thorny one. He was obliged to suppress fifteen open rebellions during five years of his reign, countless secret plots threatened his life every day, and his bitterest foes were his former comrades in the camp of the the saints. After refusing the crown offered him in a.d. 1657, without being able thereby to quell the discontents of parties, he died on September 3rd, a.d. 1658, the anniversary of his glorious victories of Dunbar and Worcester.11
3. The Restoration and the Act of Toleration.—The Restoration of royalty under Charles II., a.d. 1660-1685, began with the reinstating of the Episcopal church in all the privileges granted to it under Elizabeth. The Corporation Act of December, a.d. 1661, was the first of a series of enactments for this purpose. It required of all magistrates and civil officers that they should take an oath acknowledging the royal supremacy and communicate in the Episcopal church. The Act of Uniformity of May, a.d. 1662, was still more oppressive. It prohibited any clergyman entering the English pulpit or discharging any ministerial function, unless he had been ordained by a bishop, had signed the Thirty-nine Articles, and undertook to conduct worship [pg 018] exactly in accordance with the newly revised Book of Common Prayer. More than 2,000 Puritan ministers, who could not conscientiously submit to those terms, were driven out of their churches. Then in June, a.d. 1664, the Conventicle Act was renewed, enforcing attendance at the Episcopal church, and threatening with imprisonment or exile all found in any private religious meeting of more than five persons. In the following year the Five Mile Act inflicted heavy fines on all nonconformist ministers who should approach within five miles of their former congregation or indeed of any city. All these laws, although primarily directed against all Protestant dissenters, told equally against the Catholics, whom the king's Catholic sympathies would willingly have spared. When now his league with Catholic France against the Protestant Netherlands made it necessary for him to appease his Protestant subjects, he hoped to accomplish this and save the Catholics by his “Declaration of Indulgence” of a.d. 1672, issued with the consent of Parliament, which suspended all penal laws hitherto in force against dissenters. But the Protestant nonconformists saw through this scheme, and the Parliament of a.d. 1673 passed the anti-Catholic Test Act (§ 153, 6). Equally vain were all later attempts to secure greater liberties and privileges to the Catholics. They only served to develop the powers of Parliament and to bring the Episcopalians and nonconformists more closely together. After spending his whole life oscillating between frivolous unbelief and Catholic superstition, Charles II., on his death-bed, formally went over to the Romish church, and had the communion and extreme unction administered by a Catholic priest. His brother and successor James II., a.d. 1685-1688, who was from a.d. 1672 an avowed Catholic, sent a declaration of obedience to Rome, received a papal nuncio in London, and in the exercise of despotic power issued, in a.d. 1687, a “Declaration of Freedom of Conscience,” which, under the fair colour of universal toleration and by the setting aside of the test oath, enabled him to fill all civil and military offices with Catholics. This act proved equally oppressive to the Episcopalians and to Protestant dissenters. This intrigue cost him his throne. He had, as he himself said, staked three kingdoms on a mass, and lost all the three. William III. of Orange, a.d. 1689-1702, grandson of Charles I. and son-in-law of James II., gave a final decision to the rights of the national Episcopal church and the position of dissenters in the Act of Toleration of a.d. 1689, which he passed with consent of the Parliament. All penal laws against the latter were abrogated, and religious liberty was extended to all with the exception of Catholics and Socinians. The retention of the Corporation and Test Acts, however, still excluded them from the exercise of all political rights. They were also still obliged to pay tithes and other church dues to the Episcopal clergy of their [pg 019] dioceses, and their marriages and baptisms had to be administered in the parish churches. Their ministers were also obliged to subscribe the Thirty-nine Articles, with reservation of those points opposed to their principles. The Act of Union of a.d. 1707, passed under Queen Anne, a daughter of James II., which united England and Scotland into the one kingdom of Great Britain, gave legitimate sanction to a separate ecclesiastical establishment for each country. In Scotland the Presbyterian churches continued the established church, while the Episcopal was tolerated as a dissenting body. Congregationalism, however, has been practically limited to England and North America,12—Continuation, § 202, 5.
Notwithstanding the regeneration of papal Catholicism since the middle of the sixteenth century, Hildebrand's politico-theocratic ideal was not realized. Even Catholic princes would not be dictated to on political matters by the vicar of Christ. The most powerful of them, France, Austria, and Spain, during the sixteenth century, and subsequently also Portugal, had succeeded in the claim to the right of excluding objectionable candidates in papal elections. Ban and interdict had lost their power. The popes, however, still clung to the idea after they had been obliged to surrender the reality, and issued from time to time powerless protestations against disagreeable facts of history. Several new monkish orders were instituted during this century, mostly for teaching the young and tending the sick, but some also expressly for the promoting of theological science. Of all the orders, new and old, the Jesuits were by far the most powerful. They were regarded with jealousy and suspicion by the other orders. In respect of doctrine the Dominicans [pg 020] were as far removed from them as possible within the limits of the Tridentine Creed. But notwithstanding any such mutual jealousies, they were all animated by one yearning desire to oppose, restrict, and, where that was possible, to uproot Protestantism. With similar zeal they devoted themselves with wonderful success to the work of foreign missions.
1. The Papacy.—Paul V., a.d. 1605-1621, equally energetic in his civil and in his ecclesiastical policy, in a struggle with Venice, was obliged to behold the powerlessness of the papal interdict. His successor, Gregory XV., a.d. 1621-1623, founded the Propaganda, prescribed a secret scrutiny in papal elections, and canonized Loyola, Xavier, and Neri. He enriched the Vatican Library by the addition of the valuable treasures of the Heidelberg Library, which Maximilian I. of Bavaria sent him on his conquest of the Palatinate. Urban VIII., a.d. 1623-1644, increased the Propaganda, improved the Roman “Breviary” (§ 56, 2), condemned Jansen's Augustinus (§ 156, 5), and compelled Galileo to recant. But on the other hand, through his onesided ecclesiastical policy he was led into sacrificing the interests of the imperial house of Austria. Not only did he fail to give support to the emperor, but quite openly hailed Gustavus Adolphus, the saviour of German Protestantism, as the God-sent saviour from the Spanish-Austrian tyranny. For this he was pronounced a heretic at the imperial court, and threatened with a second edition of the sack of Rome (§ 132, 2). At the same time his soul was so filled with fanatical hatred against Protestantism, that in a letter of 1631 he congratulated the Emperor Ferdinand II. on the destruction of Magdeburg as an act most pleasing to heaven and reflecting the highest credit upon Germany, and expressed the hope that the glory of so great a victory should not be restricted to the ruins of a single city. On receiving the news of the death of Gustavus Adolphus in 1632 he broke out into loud jubilation, saying that now “the serpent was slain which with its poison had sought to destroy the whole world.” His successor, Innocent X., a.d. 1644-1655, though vigorously protesting against the Peace of Westphalia (§ 153, 2), was, owing to his abject subserviency to a woman, his own sister-in-law, reproached with the title of a new Johanna Papissa. Alexander VII., a.d. 1655-1667, had the expensive guardianship of his godchild Christina of Sweden (§ 153, 1), and fanned into a flame the spark kindled by his predecessor in the Jansenist controversy (§ 156, 5), so that his successor, Clement IX., a.d. 1667-1670, could only gradually extinguish it. Clement X., a.d. 1670-1676, by his preference for Spain roused the French king Louis XIV., who avenged himself by various encroachments on the ecclesiastical administration [pg 021] in his dominions. Innocent XI., a.d. 1676-1689, was a powerful pope, zealously promoting the weal of the church and the Papal States by introducing discipline among the clergy and attacking the immorality that prevailed among all classes of society. He unhesitatingly condemned sixty-five propositions from the lax Jesuit code of morals. Against the arrogant ambassador of Louis XIV., he energetically maintained his sovereign rights in his own domains, while he unreservedly refused the claims of the French clergy, urged by the king on the ground of the exceptional constitution of the Gallican church. Alexander VIII., a.d. 1689-1691, continued the fight against Gallicanism, and condemned the Jesuit distinction between theological and philosophical sin (§ 149, 10). Innocent XII., a.d. 1691-1700, could boast of having secured the complete subjugation of the Gallican clergy after a hard struggle. He too wrought earnestly for the reform of abuses in the curia. Specially creditable to him is the stringent bull “Romanum decet pontificem” against nepotism, which extirpated the evil disease, so that it was never again openly practised as an acknowledged right.—Continuation, § 165, 1.
2. The Jesuits and the Republic of Venice.—Venice was one of the first of the Italian cities to receive the Jesuits with open arms, a.d. 1530. But the influence obtained by them over public affairs through school and confessional, and their vast wealth accumulated from bequests and donations, led the government, in a.d. 1605, to forbid their receiving legacies or erecting new cloisters. In vain did Paul V. remonstrate. He then put Venice under an interdict. The Jesuits sought to excite the people against the government, and for this were banished in a.d. 1606. The pious and learned historian of the Council of Trent and adviser of the State, Paul Sarpi, proved a vigorous supporter of civil rights against the assumptions of the curia and the Jesuits. When in a.d. 1607 he refused a citation of Inquisition, he was dangerously wounded by three dagger stabs, inflicted by hired bandits, in whose stilettos he recognised the stilum curiæ. He died in a.d. 1623. After a ten months' vain endeavour to enforce the interdict, the pope at last, through French mediation, concluded a peace with the republic, without, however, being able to obtain either the abolition of the objectionable ecclesiastico-political laws or permission for the return of the Jesuits. Only after the republic had been weakened through the unfortunate Turkish war of a.d. 1645 was it found willing to submit. Even in a.d. 1653 it refused the offer of 150,000 ducats from the Jesuit general for the Turkish campaign; but when Alexander VII. suppressed several rich cloisters, their revenues were thankfully accepted for this purpose. In a.d. 1657, on the pope's promise of further pecuniary aid, the decree of banishment was withdrawn. The Jesuit fathers now returned in crowds, and soon regained [pg 022] much of their former influence and wealth. No pope has ever since issued an interdict against any country.13
3. The Gallican Liberties.—Although Louis XIV. of France, a.d. 1643-1715, as a good Catholic king, powerfully supported the claims of papal dogmatics against the Jansenists (§§ 156, 5; 164, 7), he was by no means unfaithful to the traditional ecclesiastical polity of his house (§§ 96, 21; 110, 1, 9, 13, 14), and was often irritated to the utmost pitch by the pope's opposition to his political interests. He rigorously insisted upon the old customary right of the Crown to the income of certain vacant ecclesiastical offices, the jus regaliæ, and extended it to all bishoprics, burdened church revenues with military pensions, confiscated ecclesiastical property, etc. Innocent XI. energetically protested against such exactions. The king then had an assembly of the French called together in Paris on March 19th, a.d. 1682, which issued the famous Four Propositions of the Gallican Clergy, drawn up by Bishop Bossuet of Meaux. These set forth the fundamental rights of the French church: (1) In secular affairs the pope has no jurisdiction over princes and kings, and cannot release their subjects from their allegiance; (2) The spiritual power of the pope is subject to the higher authority of the general councils; (3) For France it is further limited by the old French ecclesiastical laws; and, (4) Even in matters of faith the judgment of the pope without the approval of a general assembly of the church is not unalterable. Innocent consequently refused to institute any of the newly appointed bishops. He was not even appeased by the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes in a.d. 1685. He was pleased indeed, and praised the deed, and celebrated it by a Te Deum, but objected to the violent measures for the conversion of Protestants as contrary to the teaching of Christ. Then also there arose a keen struggle against the mischievous extension of the right of asylum on the part of foreign embassies at Rome. On the pope's representation all the powers but France agreed to a restriction of the custom. The pope tolerated the nuisance till the death of the French ambassador in a.d. 1687, but then insisted on its abolition under pain of the ban. In consequence of this Louis sent his new ambassador into Rome with two companies of cavaliers, threw the papal nuntio in France into prison, and laid siege to the papal state of Avignon (§ 110, 4). But Innocent was not thus to be terrorized, and the French ambassador was obliged, after eighteen months' vain demonstrations, to quit Rome. Alexander VIII. repeated the condemnation of the Four Propositions, and Innocent XIII. also stood firm. The French episcopate, on the pope's persistent refusal to install bishops [pg 023] nominated by the king, was at last constrained to submit. “Lying at the feet of his holiness,” the bishops declared that everything concluded in that assembly was null and void; and even Louis XIV., under the influence of Madame de Maintenon (§ 157, 3), wrote to the pope in a.d. 1693, saying that he recalled the order that the Four Propositions should be taught in all the schools. There still, however, survived among the French clergy a firm conviction of the Gallican Liberties, and the droit de régale continued to have the force of law.14—Continuation, § 197, 1.
4. Galileo and the Inquisition.—Galileo Galilei, professor of mathematics at Pisa and Padua, who died in a.d. 1642, among his many distinguished services to the physical, mathematical, and astronomical sciences, has the honour of being the pioneer champion of the Copernican system. On this account he was charged by the monks with contradicting Scripture. In a.d. 1616 Paul V., through Cardinal Bellarmine, threatened him with the Inquisition and prison unless he agreed to cease from vindicating and lecturing upon his heretical doctrine. He gave the required promise. But in a.d. 1632 he published a dialogue, in which three friends discussed the Ptolemaic and Copernican systems, without any formal conclusion, but giving overwhelming reasons in favour of the latter. Urban VIII., in a.d. 1636, called upon the Inquisition to institute a process against him. He was forced to recant, was condemned to prison for an indefinite period, but was soon liberated through powerful influence. How far the old man of seventy-two years of age was compelled by torture to retract is still a matter of controversy. It is, however, quite evident that it was forced from him by threats. But that Galileo went out after his recantation, gnashing his teeth and stamping his feet, muttering, “Nevertheless it moves!” is a legend of a romancing age. This, however, is the fact, that the Congregation of the Index declared the Copernican theory to be false, irrational, and directly contrary to Scripture; and that even in a.d. 1660 Alexander VII., with apostolic authority, formally confirmed this decree and pronounced it ex cathedrâ (§ 149, 4) irrevocable. It was only in a.d. 1822 that the curia set it aside, and in a new edition of the Index (§ 149, 14) in a.d. 1835 omitted the works of Galileo as well as those of Copernicus.15
5. The Controversy on the Immaculate Conception (§ 112, 4) received [pg 024] a new impulse from the nun Mary of Jesus, died 1665, of Agreda, in Old Castile, superior of the cloister there of the Immaculate Conception, writer of the “Mystical City of God.” This book professed to give an inspired account of the life of the Virgin, full of the strangest absurdities about the immaculate conception. The Sorbonne pronounced it offensive and silly; the Inquisition in Spain, Portugal, and Rome forbad the reading of it; but the Franciscans defended it as a divine revelation. A violent controversy ensued, which Alexander VII. silenced in a.d. 1661 by expressing approval of the doctrine of the immaculate conception set forth in the book.—Continuation, § 185, 2.
6. The Devotion of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.—The nun Margaret Alacoque, in the Burgundian cloister of Paray le Monial, born a.d. 1647, recovering from a painful illness when but three years old, vowed to the mother of God, who frequently appeared to her, perpetual chastity, and in gratitude for her recovery adopted the name of Mary, and when grown up resisted temptations by inflicting on herself the severest discipline, such as long fasts, sharp flagellations, lying on thorns, etc. Visions of the Virgin no longer satisfied her. She longed to lavish her affections on the Redeemer himself, which she expressed in the most extravagant terms. She took the Jesuit La Colombière as her spiritual adviser in a.d. 1675. In a new vision she beheld the side of her Beloved opened, and saw his heart glowing like a sun, into which her own was absorbed. Down to her death in a.d. 1690 she felt the most violent burning pains in her side. In a second vision she saw her Beloved's heart burning like a furnace, into which were taken her own heart and that of her spiritual adviser. In a third vision he enjoined the observance of a special “Devotion of the Sacred Heart” by all Christendom on the Friday after the octave of the Corpus Christi festival and on the first Friday of every month. La Colombière, being made director, put forth every effort to get this celebration introduced throughout the church, and on his death the idea was taken up by the whole Jesuit order. Their efforts, however, for fully a century proved unavailing. At this point, too, their most bitter opponents were the Dominicans. But even without papal authority the Jesuits so far succeeded in introducing the absurdities of this cult, and giving expression to it in word and by images, that by the beginning of the eighteenth century there were more than 300 male and female societies engaged in this devotion, and at last, in a.d. 1765, Clement XIII., the great friend of the Jesuits, gave formal sanction to this special celebration.—Continuation, § 188, 12.
7. New Congregations and Orders.—(1) At the head of the new orders of this century stands the Benedictine Congregation of St. Banne at Verdun, founded by Didier de la Cour. Elected Abbot of St. Banne in a.d. 1596, he gave his whole strength to the reforming of this [pg 025] cloister, which had fallen into luxurious and immoral habits. By a papal bull of a.d. 1604 all cloisters combining with St. Banne into a congregation were endowed with rich privileges. Gradually all the Benedictine monasteries of Lorraine and Alsace joined the union. Didier's reforms were mostly in the direction of moral discipline and asceticism; but in the new congregation scholarship was represented by Calmet, Ceillier, etc., and many gave themselves to work as teachers in the schools.—(2) Much more important for the promotion of theological science, especially for patristics and church history, was another Benedictine congregation founded in France in a.d. 1618 by Laurence Bernard, that of St. Maur, named after a disciple of St. Benedict. The members of this order devoted themselves exclusively to science and literary pursuits. To them belonged the distinguished names, Mabillon, Montfaucon, Reinart, Martène, D'Achery, Le Nourry, Durand, Surius, etc. They showed unwearied diligence in research and a noble liberality of judgment. The editions of the most celebrated Fathers issued by them are the best of the kind, and this may also be said of the great historical collections which we owe to their diligence.—(3) The Fathers of the Oratory of Jesus are an imitation of the Priests of the Oratory founded by Philip Neri (§ 149, 7). Peter of Barylla, son of a member of parliament, founded it in a.d. 1611 by building an oratory at Paris. He was more of a mystic than of a scholar, but his order sent out many distinguished and brilliant theologians; e.g. Malebranche, Morinus, Thomassinus, Rich, Simon, Houbigant.—(4) The Piarists, Patres scholarum piarum, were founded in Rome in a.d. 1607 by the Spaniard Joseph Calasanza. The order adopted as a fourth vow the obligation of gratuitous tuition. They were hated by the Obscurantist Jesuits for their successful labours for the improvement of Catholic education, especially in Poland and Austria, and also because they objected to all participation in political schemes.—(5) The Order of the Visitation of Mary, or Salesian Nuns, instituted in a.d. 1610 by the mystic Francis de Sales and Francisca Chantal (§ 157, 1). They visited the poor and sick in imitation of Elizabeth's visit to the Virgin (Luke i. 39); but the papal rescript of a.d. 1618 gave prominence to the education of children.
8.—(6) The Priests of the Missions and Sisters of Charity were both founded by Vincent de Paul. Born of poor parents, he was, after completing his education, captured by pirates, and as a slave converted his renegade master to Christianity. As domestic chaplain to the noble family of Gondy he was characterized in a remarkable degree for unassuming humility, and he wrought earnestly and successfully as a home missionary. In a.d. 1618 he founded the order of Sisters of Mercy, who became devoted nurses of the sick throughout all France, and in a.d. 1627 that of the Priests of the Missions, or Lazarists, who [pg 026] travelled the country attending to the spiritual and bodily wants of men. After the death of the Countess Gondy in a.d. 1625, he placed at the head of the Sisters of Mercy the widow Louise le Gras, distinguished equally for qualities of head and heart. Vincent died in a.d. 1660, and was subsequently canonized.16—(7) The Trappists, founded by De Rancé, a distinguished canon, who in a.d. 1664 passed from the extreme of worldliness to the extreme of fanatical asceticism. The order got its name from the Cistercian abbey La Trappe in Normandy, of which Rancé was commendatory abbot. Amid many difficulties he succeeded, in a.d. 1665, in thoroughly reforming the wild monks, who were called “the bandits of La Trappe.” His rule enjoined on the monks perpetual silence, only broken in public prayer and singing and in uttering the greeting as they met, Memento mori. Their bed was a hard board with some straw; their only food was bread and water, roots, herbs, some fruit and vegetables, without butter, fat, or oil. Study was forbidden, and they occupied themselves with hard field labour. Their clothing was a dark-brown cloak worn on the naked body, with wooden shoes. Very few cloisters besides La Trappe submitted to such severities (§ 185, 2).—(8) The English Nuns, founded at St. Omer, in France, by Mary Ward, the daughter of an English Catholic nobleman, for the education of girls. Originally composed of English maidens, it was afterwards enlarged by receiving those of other nationalities, with establishments in Germany, Italy, and the Netherlands. It did not obtain papal confirmation, and in a.d. 1630 Urban VIII., giving heed to the calumnies of enemies, formally dissolved it on account of arrogance, insubordination, and heresy. All its institutions and schools were then closed, while Mary herself was imprisoned and given over to the Inquisition in Rome. Urban was soon convinced of her innocence and set her free. Her scattered nuns were now collected again, but succeeded only in a.d. 1703 in obtaining confirmation from Clement XI. Their chief tasks were the education of youth and care of the sick. They were arranged in three classes, according to their rank in life, and were bound by their vows for a year or at the most three years, after which they might return to the world and marry. Their chief centre was Bavaria with the mother cloister in Munich.—Continuation, § 165, 2.
9. The Propaganda.—Gregory XV. gave unity and strength to the efforts for conversion of heretics and heathens by instituting, in a.d. 1662, the Congregatio de Propaganda Fide. Urban VIII. in a.d. 1627 attached to it a missionary training school, recruited as far as possible from natives of the respective countries, like Loyola's Collegium Germanicum founded in a.d. 1552 (§ 151, 1). He was thus able every [pg 027] Epiphany to astonish Romans and foreigners by what seemed a repetition of the pentecostal miracle of tongues. At this institute training in all languages was given, and breviaries, mass and devotional books, and handbooks were printed for the use of the missions. It was also the centre from which all missionary enterprises originated.—Continuation, § 204, 2.
10. Foreign Missions.—Even during this century the Jesuits excelled all others in missionary zeal. In a.d. 1608 they sent out from Madrid mission colonies among the wandering Indians of South America, and no Spaniard could settle there without their permission. The most thoroughly organized of these was that of Paraguay, in which, according to their own reports, over 100,000 converted savages lived happily and contented under the mild, patriarchal rule of the Jesuits for 140 years, a.d. 1610-1750; but according to another well informed, though perhaps not altogether impartial, account, that of Ibagnez, a member of the mission, expelled for advising submission to the decree depriving it of political independence, the paternal government was flavoured by a liberal dose of slave-driver despotism. It was at least an undoubted fact, notwithstanding the boasted patriarchal idyllic character of the Jesuit state, that the order amassed great wealth from the proceeds of the industry of their protégés.—Continuation, § 165, 3.
11. In the East Indies (§ 150, 1) the Jesuits had uninterrupted success. In a.d. 1606, in order to make way among the Brahmans, the Jesuit Rob. Nobili assumed their dress, avoided all contact with even the converts of low caste, giving them the communion elements not directly, but by an instrument, or laying them down for them outside the door, and as a Christian Brahman made a considerable impression upon the most exclusive classes.—In Japan the mission prospects were dark (§ 150, 2). Mendicants and Jesuits opposed and mutually excommunicated one another. The Catholic Spaniards and Portuguese were at feud among themselves, and only agreed in intriguing against Dutch and English Protestants. When the land was opened to foreign trade, it became the gathering point of the moral scum of all European countries, and the traffic in Japanese slaves, especially by the Portuguese, brought discredit on the Christian cause. The idea gained ground that the efforts at Christianization were but a prelude to conquest by the Spaniards and Portuguese. In the new organization of the country by the shiogun Ijejasu all governors were to vow hostility to Christians and foreigners. In a.d. 1606 he forbad the observance of the Christian religion anywhere in the land. When the conspiracy of a Christian daimio was discovered, he caused, in a.d. 1614, whole shiploads of Jesuits, mendicants, and native priests to be sent out of the country. But as many of the banished returned, death was threatened against all who might be found, and in a.d. 1624 all foreigners, with the exception [pg 028] of Chinese and Dutch, were rigorously driven out. And now a bloody persecution of native Christians began. Many thousands fled to China and the neighbouring islands; crowds of those remaining were buried alive or burnt on piles made up of the wood of Christian crosses. The victims displayed a martyr spirit like those of the early days. Those who escaped organized in a.d. 1637 an armed resistance, and held the fortress of Arima in face of the shiogun's army sent against them. After a three months' siege the fortress was conquered by the help of Dutch cannon; 37,000 were massacred in the fort, and the rest were hurled down from high rocks. The most severe enactments were passed against Christians, and the edicts filled with fearful curses against “the wicked sect” and “the vile God” of the Christians were posted on all the bridges, street corners, and squares. Christianity now seemed to be completely stamped out. The recollection of this work, however, was still retained down to the nineteenth century. For when French missionaries went in a.d. 1860 to Nagasaki, they found to their surprise in the villages around thousands (?) who greeted them joyfully as the successors of the first Christian missionaries.
12. In China, after Ricci's death (§ 150, 1), the success of the mission continued uninterrupted. In a.d. 1628 a German Jesuit, Adam Schell, went out from Cologne, who gained great fame at court for his mathematical skill. Louis XIV. founded at Paris a missionary college, which sent out Jesuits thoroughly trained in mathematics. But Dominicans and Franciscans over and over again complained to Rome of the Jesuits. They never allowed missionaries of other orders to come near their own establishments, and actually drove them away from places where they had begun to work. They even opposed priests, bishops, and vicars-apostolic sent by the Propaganda, declared their papal briefs forgeries, forbad their congregations to have any intercourse with those “heretics,” and under suspicion of Jansenism brought them before the Inquisition of Goa. Clement X. issued a firm-toned bull against such proceedings; but the Jesuits gave no heed to it, and attended only to their own general. The papal condemnation a century later of the Jesuits' accommodation scheme, and their permission of heathen rites and beliefs to the new converts, complained against by the Dominicans, was equally fruitless. In a.d. 1645 Innocent X. forbad this practice on pain of excommunication; but still they continued it till the decree was modified by Alexander VII. in a.d. 1656. After persistent complaints by the Dominicans, Innocent XII. appointed a new congregation in Rome to investigate the question, but their deliberations yielded no result for ten years. At last Clement XI. confirmed the first decree of Innocent X., condemned anew the so called Chinese rites, and sent the legate Thomas of Tournon in a.d. 1703 to enforce his decision. Tournon, received at first by the emperor [pg 029] at Pekin with great consideration, fell into disfavour through Jesuit intrigues, was banished from the capital, and returned to Nankin. But as he continued his efforts from this point, and an attempt to poison him failed in a.d. 1707, he went to Macao, where he was put in prison by the Portuguese, in which he died in a.d. 1710. Clement XI., in a.d. 1715, issued his decree against the Chinese rites in a yet severer form; but the Franciscan who proclaimed the papal bull was put in prison as an offender against the laws of the country, and, after being maltreated for seventeen months, was banished. So proudly confident had the Jesuits become, that in a.d. 1720 they treated with scorn and contempt the papal legate Mezzabarba, Patriarch of Alexandria, who tried by certain concessions to move them to submit. A more severe decree of Clement XII. of a.d. 1735 was scoffed at by being proclaimed only in the Latin original. Benedict XIV. succeeded for the first time, in a.d. 1742, in breaking down their opposition, after the charges had been renewed by the Capuchin Norbert. All the Jesuit missionaries were now obliged by oath to exclude all pagan customs and rites; but with this all the glory and wonderful success of their Asiatic missions came to an end.—Continuation, § 165, 3.
13. Trade and Industry of the Jesuits.—As Christian missions generally deserve credit, not only for introducing civilization and culture along with the preaching of the gospel into far distant heathen lands, but also for having greatly promoted the knowledge of countries, peoples, and languages among their fellow countrymen at home, opening up new fields for colonization and trade, these ends were also served by the world-wide missionary enterprises of the Jesuits, and were in perfect accordance with the character and intention of this order, which aimed at universal dominion. In carrying out these schemes the Jesuits abandoned the ascetical principles of their founder and their vow of poverty, amassing enormous wealth by securing in many parts a practical monopoly of trade. Their fifth general, Aquaviva (§ 149, 8), secured from Gregory XIII., avowedly in favour of the mission, exclusive right to trade with both Indies. They soon erected great factories in all parts of the world, and had ships laden with valuable merchandise on all seas. They had mines, farms, sugar plantations, apothecary shops, bakeries, etc., founded banks, sold relics, miracle-working amulets, rosaries, healing Ignatius- and Xavier-water (§ 149, 11), etc., and in successful legacy-hunting excelled all other orders. Urban VIII. and Clement XI. issued severe bulls against such abuses, but only succeeded in restricting them to some extent.—Continuation, § 165, 9.
14. An Apostate to Judaism.—Gabriel, or as he was called after circumcision, Uriel Acosta, was sprung from a noble Portuguese family, originally [pg 030] Jewish. Doubting Christianity in consequence of the traffic in indulgences, he at last repudiated the New Testament in favour of the Old. He refused rich ecclesiastical appointments, fled to Amsterdam, and there formally went over to Judaism. Instead of the biblical Mosaism, however, he was disappointed to find only Pharisaic pride and Talmudic traditionalism, against which he wrote a treatise in a.d. 1623. The Jews now denounced him to the civil authorities as a denier of God and immortality. The whole issue of his book was burnt. Twice the synagogue thundered its ban against him. The first was withdrawn on his recantation, and the second, seven years after, upon his submitting to a severe flagellation. In spite of all he held to his Sadducean standpoint to his end in a.d. 1647, when he died by his own hand from a pistol shot, driven to despair by the unceasing persecution of the Jews.
Down to the last quarter of the seventeenth century the Spanish Mystics (§ 149, 16), and especially those attached to Francis de Sales, were recognised as thoroughly orthodox. But now the Jesuits appeared as the determined opponents of all mysticism that savoured of enthusiasm. By means of vile intrigues they succeeded in getting Molinos, Guyon, and Fénelon condemned, as “Quietist” heretics, although the founder of their party had been canonized and his doctrine solemnly sanctioned by the pope. Yet more objectionable to the Jesuits was that reaction toward Augustinianism which, hitherto limited to the Dominicans (§ 149, 13), and treated by them as a theological theory, was now spreading among other orders in the form of French Jansenism, accompanied by deep moral earnestness and a revival of the whole Christian life.
1. Francis de Sales and Madame Chantal.—Francis Count de Sales, from a.d. 1602 Bishop of Geneva, i.e. in partibus, with Annecy as his residence, had shown himself a good Catholic by his zeal in rooting out Protestantism in Chablais, on the south of the Genevan lake. In a.d. 1604 meeting the young widowed Baroness de Chantal, along with whom at a later period he founded the Order of the Visitation of Mary (§ 156, 7), he proved a good physician to her amid her sorrow, doubts, [pg 031] and temptations. He sought to qualify himself for this task by reading the writings of St. Theresa. Teacher and scholar so profited by their mystical studies, that in a.d. 1665 Alexander VII. deemed the one worthy of canonization and the other of beatification. In a.d. 1877 Pius IX. raised Francis to the dignity of doctor ecclesiæ. His “Introduction to the Devout Life” affords a guide to laymen to the life of the soul, amid all the disturbances of the world resting in calm contemplation and unselfish love of God. In the Catholic Church, next to À Kempis' “Imitation of Christ,” it is the most appreciated and most widely used book of devotion. In his “Theotime” he leads the reader deeper into the yearnings of the soul after fellowship with God, and describes the perfect peace which the soul reaches in God.17
2. Michael Molinos.—After Francis de Sales a great multitude of male and female apostles of the new mystical gospel sprang up, and were favourably received by all the more moderate church leaders. The reactionaries, headed by the Jesuits, sought therefore all the more eagerly to deal severely with the Spaniard Michael Molinos. Having settled in Rome in a.d. 1669, he soon became the most popular of father confessors. His “Spiritual Guide” in a.d. 1675 received the approval of the Holy Office, and was introduced into Protestant Germany through a Latin translation by Francke in a.d. 1687, and a German translation in a.d. 1699 by Arnold. In it he taught those who came to the confessional that the way to the perfection of the Christian life, which consists in peaceful rest in the most intimate communion with God, is to be found in spiritual conference, secret prayer, active and passive contemplation, in rigorous destruction of all self-will, and in disinterested love of God, fortified, wherever that is possible, by daily communion. The success of the book was astonishing. It promptly influenced all ranks and classes, both men and women, lay and clerical, not only in Italy, but also by means of translations in France and Spain. But soon a reaction set in. As early as a.d. 1681 the famous Jesuit Segneri issued a treatise, in which he charged Molinos' contemplative mysticism with onesidedness and exaggeration. He was answered by the pious and learned Oratorian Petrucci. A commission, appointed by the Inquisition to examine the writings of both parties, pronounced the views of Molinos and Petrucci to be in accordance with church doctrine and Segneri's objections to be unfounded. All that Jesuitism reckoned as foundation, means, and end of piety was characterized as purely elementary. No hope could be entertained of winning over Innocent XI., the bitter enemy of the Jesuits. But Louis XIV. of France, at the instigation of his Jesuit father confessor, Lachaise, expressed [pg 032] through his ambassador his surprise that his holiness should, not only tolerate, but even encourage and support so dangerous a heretic, who taught all Christendom to undervalue the public services of the Church. In a.d. 1685 Innocent referred the matter to the tribunal of the Inquisition. Throughout the two years during which the investigation proceeded all arts were used to secure condemnation. Extreme statements of fanatical adherents of Molinos were not rarely met with, depreciating the public ordinances and ceremonies, confession, hearing of mass, church prayers, rosaries, etc. The pope, facile with age, amid groans and lamentations, allowed things to take their course, and at last confirmed the decree of the Inquisition of August 28th, a.d. 1687, by which Molinos was found guilty of spreading godless doctrine, and sixty-eight propositions, partly from his own writings, partly from the utterances of his adherents, were condemned as heretical and blasphemous. The heretic was to abjure his heresies publicly, clad in penitential garments, and was then consigned to lifelong solitary confinement in a Dominican cloister, where he died in a.d. 1697.18
3. Madame Guyon and Fénelon.—After her husband's death, Madame Guyon, in company with her father confessor, the Barnabite Lacombe, who had been initiated during a long residence at Rome into the mysteries of Molinist mysticism, spent five years travelling through France, Switzerland, Savoy, and Piedmont. Though already much suspected, she won the hearts of many men and women among the clergy and laity, and enkindled in them by personal conference, correspondence, and her literary work, the ardour of mystical love. Her brilliant writings are indeed disfigured by traces of foolish exaggeration, fanaticism and spiritual pride. She calls herself the woman of Revelation xii. 1, and the mère de la grace of her adherents. The following are the main distinguishing characteristics of her mysticism: The necessity of turning away from everything creaturely, rejecting all earthly pleasure and destroying every selfish interest, as well as of turning to God in passive contemplation, silent devotion, naked faith, which dispensed with all intellectual evidence, and pure disinterested love, which loves God for Himself alone, not for the eternal salvation obtained through Him. On her return to Paris with Lacombe in a.d. 1686 the proper martyrdom of her life began. Her chief persecutor was her step-brother, the Parisian superior of the Barnabites, La Mothe, who spread the most scandalous reports about his half-sister and Lacombe, and had them both imprisoned by a royal decree in a.d. 1688. Lacombe never regained his liberty. Taken from one prison to another, he lost his reason, and died in an asylum in a.d. [pg 033] 1699. Madame Guyon, however, by the influence of Madame de Maintenon, was released after ten months' confinement. The favour of this royal dame was not of long continuance. Warned on all sides of the dangerous heretic, she broke off all intercourse with her in a.d. 1693, and persuaded the king to appoint a new commission, in a.d. 1694, with Bishop Bossuet of Meaux at its head, to examine her suspected writings. This commission meeting at Issy, had already, in February, a.d. 1695, drawn up thirty test articles, when Fénelon, tutor of the king's grandson, and now nominated to the archbishopric of Cambray, was ordered by the king to take part in the proceedings. He signed the articles, though he objected to much in them, and had four articles of his own added. Madame Guyon also did so, and Bossuet at last testified for her that he had found her moral character stainless and her doctrine free from Molinist heresy. But the bigot Maintenon was not satisfied with this. Bossuet demanded the surrender of this certificate that he might draw up another; and when Madame Guyon refused, on the basis of a statement by the crazed Lacombe, she was sent to the Bastile in a.d. 1696. In a.d. 1697 Fénelon had written in her defence his “Explication des Maximes des Saintes sur la Vie Intérieur,” showing that the condemned doctrines of passive contemplation, secret prayer, naked faith, and disinterested love, had all been previously taught by St. Theresa, John of the Cross, Francis de Sales, and other saints. He sent this treatise for an opinion to Rome. A violent controversy then arose between Bossuet and Fénelon. The pious, well-meaning pope, Innocent XII., endeavoured vainly to bring about a good understanding. Bossuet and the all-powerful Maintenon wished no reconciliation, but condemnation, and gave the king and pope no rest till very reluctantly he prohibited the objectionable book by a brief in a.d. 1699, and condemned twenty-three propositions from it as heretical. Fénelon, strongly attached to the church, and a bitter persecutor of Protestants, made an unconditional surrender, as guilty of a defective exposition of the truth. But Madame Guyon continued in the Bastile till a.d. 1701, when she retired to Blois, where she died in a.d. 1717. Bossuet had died in a.d. 1704, and Fénelon in a.d. 1715. She published only two of her writings: “An Exposition of the Song,” and the “Moyen Court et très Facile de faire Oraison.” Many others, including her translation and expositions of the Bible, were during her lifetime edited in twenty volumes by her friend, the Reformed preacher of the Palatinate, Peter Poiret.19[pg 034]
4. Mysticism Tinged with Theosophy and Pantheism.—Antoinette Bourignon, the daughter of a rich merchant of Lille, in France, while matron of a hospital in her native city, had in a.d. 1662 gathered around her a party of believers in her theosophic and fantastic revelations. She was obliged to flee to the Netherlands, and there, by the force of her eloquence in speech and writing, spread her views among the Protestants. Among them she attracted the great scientist Swammerdam. But when she introduced politics, she escaped imprisonment only by flight. Down to her death in a.d. 1680 she earnestly and successfully prosecuted her mission in north-west Germany. Peter Poiret collected her writings and published them in twenty-one volumes at Amsterdam, in a.d. 1679.—Quite of another sort was the pantheistic mysticism of Angelus Silesius. Originally a Protestant physician at Breslau, he went over to the Romish church in a.d. 1653, and in consequence received from Vienna the honorary title of physician to the emperor. He was made priest in a.d. 1661, and till his death in a.d. 1677 maintained a keen polemic against the Protestant church with all a pervert's zeal. Most of his hymns belong to his Protestant period. As a Catholic he wrote his “Cherubinischer Wandersmann,” a collection of rhymes in which, with childish naïveté and hearty, gushing ardour, he merges self into the abyss of the universal Deity, and develops a system of the most pronounced pantheism.
5. Jansenism in its first Stage.—Bishop Cornelius Jansen, of Ypres, who died in a.d. 1638, gave the fruits of his lifelong studies of Augustine in his learned work, “Augustinus s. doctr. Aug. de humanæ Naturæ Sanitate, Ægritudine, et Medicina adv. Pelagianos et Massilienses,” which was published after his death in three volumes, Louvain, 1640. The Jesuits induced Urban VIII., in a.d. 1642, to prohibit it in his bull In eminenti. Augustine's numerous followers in France felt themselves hit by this decree. Jansen's pupil at Port Royal from a.d. 1635, Duvergier de Hauranne, usually called St. Cyran, from the Benedictine monastery of which he was abbot, was the bitter foe of the Jesuits and Richelieu, who had him cast into prison in a.d. 1638, from which he was liberated after the death of the cardinal in a.d. 1643, and shortly before his own. Another distinguished member of the party was Antoine Arnauld, doctor of the Sorbonne, who died in a.d. 1694, the youngest of twenty children of a parliamentary advocate, whose powerful defence of the University of Paris against the Jesuits called forth their hatred and lifelong persecution. His mantle, as a vigorous polemist, had fallen upon his youngest son. Very important too was the influence of his much older sister, Angelica Arnauld, Abbess of the Cistercian cloister of Port Royal des Champs, six miles from Paris, which under her became the centre of religious life and effort for all [pg 035] France. Around her gathered some of the noblest, most pious, and talented men of the time: the poet Racine, the mathematician and apologist Pascal, the Bible translator De Sacy, the church historian Tillemont, all ardent admirers of Augustine and determined opponents of the lax morality of the Jesuits. Arnauld's book, “De la fréquente Communion,” was approved by the Sorbonne, the Parliament, and the most distinguished of the French clergy; but in a.d. 1653 Innocent X. condemned five Jansenist propositions in it as heretical. The Augustinians now maintained that these doctrines were not taught in the sense attributed to them by the pope. Arnauld distinguished the question du fait from the question du droit, maintaining that the latter only were subject to the judgment of the Holy See. The Sorbonne, now greatly changed in composition and character, expelled him on account of this position from its corporation in a.d. 1656. About this time, at Arnauld's instigation, Pascal, the profound and brilliant author of “Pensées sur la Religion,” began, under the name of Louis de Montalte to publish his famous “Provincial Letters,” which in an admirable style exposed and lashed with deep earnestness and biting wit the base moral principles of Jesuit casuistry. The truly annihilating effect of these letters upon the reputation of the powerful order could not be checked by their being burnt by order of Parliament by the hangman at Aix in a.d. 1657, and at Paris in a.d. 1660. But meanwhile the specifically Jansenist movement entered upon a new phase of its development. Alexander VII. had issued in a.d. 1656 a bull which denounced the application of the distinction du fait and du droit to the papal decrees as derogatory to the holy see, and affirmed that Jansen taught the five propositions in the sense they had been condemned. In order to enforce the sentence, Annal, the Jesuit father confessor of Louis XIV., obtained in 1661 a royal decree requiring all French clergy, monks, nuns, and teachers to sign a formula unconditionally accepting this bull. Those who refused were banished, and fled mostly to the Netherlands. The sorely oppressed nuns of Port Royal at last reluctantly agreed to sign it; but they were still persecuted, and in a.d. 1664 the new archbishop, Perefixe, inaugurated a more severe persecution, placed this cloister under the interdict, and removed some of the nuns to other convents. In a.d. 1669, Alexander's successor, Clement IX., secured the submission of Arnauld, De Sacy, Nicole, and many of the nuns by a policy of mild connivance. But the hatred of the Jesuits was still directed against their cloister. In a.d. 1705 Clement XI. again demanded full and unconditioned acceptance of the decree of Alexander VII., and when the nuns refused, the pope, in a.d. 1708, declared this convent an irredeemable nest of heresy, and ordered its suppression, which was carried out in a.d. 1709. In a.d. 1710 cloister and church were levelled to the [pg 036] ground, and the very corpses taken out of their graves.20—Continuation, § 165, 7.
Catholic theology flourished during the seventeenth century as it had never done since the twelfth and thirteenth. Especially in the liberal Gallican church there was a vigorous scientific life. The Parisian Sorbonne and the orders of the Jesuits, St. Maur, and the Oratorians, excelled in theological, particularly in patristic and historical, learning, and the contemporary brilliancy of Reformed theology in France afforded a powerful stimulus. But the best days of art, especially Italian painting, were now past. Sacred music was diligently cultivated, though in a secularized style, and many gifted hymn-writers made their appearance in Spain and Germany.
1. Theological Science (§ 149, 14).—The parliamentary advocate, Mich. le Jay, published at his own expense the Parisian Polyglott in ten folio vols., a.d. 1629-1645, which, besides complete Syriac and Arabic translations, included also the Samaritan. The chief contributor was the Oratorian Morinus, who edited the LXX. and the Samaritan texts, which he regarded as incomparably superior to the Masoretic text corrupted by the Jews. The Jansenists produced a French translation of the Bible with practical notes, condemned by the pope, but much read by the people. It was mainly the work of the brothers De Sacy. The New Testament was issued in a.d. 1667 and the Old Testament somewhat later, called the Bible of Mons from the fictitious name of the place of publication. Richard Simon, the Oratorian, who died in a.d. 1712, treated Scripture with a boldness of criticism never before heard of within the church. While opposed by many on the Catholic side, the curia favoured his work as undermining the Protestant doctrine of Scripture. Cornelius à Lapide, who died a.d. 1637, expounded Scripture according to the fourfold sense.—In systematic theology the old scholastic method still held sway. Moral theology was wrought out in the form [pg 037] of casuistry with unexampled lasciviousness, especially by the Jesuits (§ 149, 10). The work of the Spaniard Escobar, who died in a.d. 1669, ran through fifty editions, and that of Busembaum, professor in Cologne and afterwards rector of Münster, who died a.d. 1668, went through seventy editions. On account of the attempted assassination of Louis XV. by Damiens in a.d. 1757, with which the Jesuits and their doctrine of tyrannicide were charged, the Parliament of Toulouse in a.d. 1757, and of Paris in a.d. 1761, had Busembaum's book publicly burnt, and several popes, Alexander VII., VIII., and Innocent XI., condemned a number of propositions from the moral writings of these and other Jesuits. Among polemical writers the most distinguished were Becanus, who died in a.d. 1624, and Bossuet (§ 153, 7). Among the Jansenists the most prominent controversialists were Nicole and Arnauld, who, in order to escape the reproach of Calvinism, sought to prove the Catholic doctrine of the supper to be the same as that of the apostles, and were answered by the Reformed theologians Claude and Jurieu. In apologetics the leading place is occupied by Pascal, with his brilliant “Pensées.” Huetius, a French bishop and editor of Origen, who died in a.d. 1721, replied to Spinoza's attacks on the Pentateuch, and applying to reason itself the Cartesian principle, that philosophy must begin with doubt, pointed the doubter to the supernatural revealed truths in the Catholic church as the only anchor of salvation. The learned Jesuit Dionysius Petavius, who died in a.d. 1652, edited Epiphanius and wrote gigantic chronological works and numerous violent polemics against Calvinists and Jansenists. His chief work is the unfinished patristic-dogmatic treatise in five vols. folio, a.d. 1680, “De theologicis Dogmatibus.” The Oratorian Thomassinus wrote an able archæological work: “Vetus et Nova Eccl. Disciplina circa Beneficia et Beneficiarios.”
2. In church history, besides those named in § 5, 2, we may mention Pagi, the keen critic and corrector of Baronius. The study of sources was vigorously pursued. We have collections of mediæval writings and documents by Sirmond, D'Achery, Mabillon, Martène, Baluzius; of acts of councils by Labbé and Cossart, those of France by Jac. Sirmond, and of Spain by Aguirre; acts of the martyrs by Ruinart; monastic rules by Holstenius, a pervert, who became Vatican librarian, and died at Rome a.d. 1661. Dufresne Ducange, an advocate, who died in a.d. 1688, wrote glossaries of the mediæval and barbarous Latin and Greek, indispensable for the study of documents belonging to those times. The greatest prodigy of learning was Mabillon, who died in a.d. 1707, a Benedictine of St. Maur, and historian of his order. Pet. de Marca, who died Archbishop of Paris a.d. 1662, wrote the famous work on the Gallican liberties “De Concordia Sacerdotii et Imperii.” The Jansenist doctor of the Sorbonne, Elias du Pin, who died a.d. 1719, wrote [pg 038] “Nouvelle Bibliothèque des Auteurs Eccles.” in forty-seven vols. The Jesuit Maimbourg, died a.d. 1686, compiled several party histories of Wiclifism, Lutheranism, and Calvinism; but as a Gallican was deprived of office by the pope, and afterwards supported by a royal pension. The Antwerp Jesuits Bolland, Henschen, Papebroch started, in a.d. 1643, the gigantic work “Acta Sanctorum,” carried on by the learned members of their order in Belgium, known as Bollandists. It was stopped by the French invasion of a.d. 1794, when it had reached October 15th with the fifty-third folio vol. The Belgian Jesuits continued the work from a.d. 1845-1867, reaching in six vols. the end of October, but not displaying the ability and liberality of their predecessors. In Venice Paul Sarpi (§ 155, 2) wrote a history of the Tridentine Council, one of the most brilliant historical works of any period. Leo Allatius, a Greek convert at Rome, who died in a.d. 1669, wrote a work to show the agreement of the Eastern and Western churches. Cardinal Bona distinguished himself as a liturgical writer.—In France pulpit eloquence reached the highest pitch in such men as Flechier, Bossuet, Bourdaloue, Fénelon, Massillon, and Bridaine. In Vienna Abraham à St. Clara inveighed in a humorous, grotesque way against the corruption of manners, with an undercurrent of deep moral earnestness. Similar in style and spirit, but much more deeply sunk in Catholic superstition, was his contemporary the Capuchin Martin of Cochem, who missionarized the Rhine Provinces and western Germany for forty years, and issued a large number of popular religious tracts.—Continuation, § 165, 14.
3. Art and Poetry (§ 149, 15).—The greatest master of the musical school founded by Palestrina was Allégri, whose Miserere is performed yearly on the Wednesday afternoon of Passion Week in the Sistine Chapel in Rome. The oratorio originated from the application of the lofty music of this school to dramatic scenes drawn from the Bible, for purely musical and not theatrical performance. Philip Neri patronized this music freely in his oratory, from which it took the name. This new church music became gradually more and more secularized and approximated to the ordinary opera style.—In ecclesiastical architecture the Renaissance style still prevailed, but debased with senseless, tasteless ornamentation.—In the Italian school of painting the decline, both in creative power and imitative skill, was very marked from the end of the sixteenth century. In Spain during the seventeenth century religious painting reached a high point of excellence in Murillo of Seville, who died in a.d. 1682, a master in representing calm meditation and entranced felicity.—The two greatest poets of Spain, the creators of the Spanish drama, Lope de Vega (died a.d. 1635) and Pedro Calderon (died a.d. 1681), both at first soldiers and afterwards priests, flourished during this century. The elder excelled the younger, not only in [pg 039] fruitfulness and versatility (1,500 comedies, 320 autos, § 115, 12, etc.), but also in poetic genius and patriotism. Calderon, with his 122 dramas, 73 festival plays, 200 preludes, etc., excelled De Vega in artistic expression and beauty of imagery. Both alike glorify the Inquisition, but occasionally subordinate Mary and the saints to the great redemption of the cross.—Specially deserving of notice is the noble German Jesuit Friedr. von Spee, died a.d. 1635. His spiritual songs show deep love to the Saviour and a profound feeling for nature, approaching in some respects the style of the evangelical hymn-writers. Spee was a keen but unsuccessful opponent of witch prosecution. Another eminent poetic genius of the age was the Jesuit Jac. Balde of Munich, who died in a.d. 1688. He is at his best in lyrical poetry. A deep religious vein runs through all his Latin odes, in which he enthusiastically appeals to the Virgin to raise him above all earthly passions. To Herder belongs the merit of rescuing him from oblivion.
The Formula of Concord commended itself to the hearts and intelligences of Lutherans, and secured a hundred years' supremacy of orthodoxy, notwithstanding two Christological controversies. Gradually, however, a new dogmatic scholasticism arose, which had the defects as well as the excellences of the mediæval system. The orthodoxy of this school deteriorated, on the one hand, into violent polemic on confessional differences, and, on the other, into undue depreciation of outward forms in favour of a spiritual life and personal piety. These tendencies are represented by the Syncretist and Pietist controversies.
1. Christological Controversies.—(1) The Cryptist and Kenotist Controversy between the Giessen and Tübingen theologians, in a.d. 1619, about Christ's state of humiliation, led to the publication of many violent treatises down to a.d. 1626. The Kenotists of Giessen, with Mentzer and Feuerborn at their head, assigned the humiliation only to the human nature, and explained it as an actual κένωσις, i.e. a complete but voluntary resigning of the omnipresence and omnipotence immanent [pg 040] in His divinity (κτῆσις, but not χρῆσις), yet so that He could have them at His command at any moment, e.g. in His miracles. The Cryptists of Tübingen, with Luc. Osiander and Thumm at their head, ascribed humiliation to both natures, and taught that all the while Christ, even secundum carnem, was omnipresent and ruled both in heaven and earth, but in a hidden way; the humiliation is no κένωσις, but only a κρύψις. After repeated unsuccessful attempts to bring about a reconciliation, John George, Elector of Saxony, in a.d. 1623, accepted the Kenotic doctrine. But the two parties still continued their strife.22—2. The Lütkemann Controversy on the humanity of Christ in death was of far less importance. Lütkemann, a professor of philosophy at Rostock, affirmed that in death, because the unity of soul and body was broken, Christ was not true man, and that to deny this was to destroy the reality and the saving power of his death. He held that the incarnation of Christ lasted through death, because the divine nature was connected, not only with the soul, but also with the body. Lütkemann was obliged to quit Rostock, but got an honourable call to Brunswick as superintendent and court preacher, and there died in a.d. 1655. Later Lutherans treated the controversy as a useless logomachy.
2. The Syncretist Controversy.—Since the Hofmann controversy (§ 141, 15) the University of Helmstadt had shown a decided humanistic tendency, and gave even greater freedom in the treatment of doctrines than the Formula of Concord, which it declined to adopt. To this school belonged George Calixt, and from a.d. 1614 for forty years he laboured in promoting its interests. He was a man of wide culture and experience, who had obtained a thorough knowledge of church history, and acquaintance with the most distinguished theologians of all churches, during his extensive foreign travels, and therewith a geniality and breadth of view not by any means common in those days. He did not indeed desire any formal union between the different churches, but rather a mutual recognition, love, and tolerance. For this purpose he set, as a secondary principle of Christian theology, besides Scripture, as the primary principle, the consensus of the first five centuries as the common basis of all churches, and sought to represent later ecclesiastical differences as unessential or of less consequence. This was denounced by strict Lutherans as Syncretism and Cryptocatholicism. In a.d. 1639 the Hanoverian preacher Buscher charged him with being a secret Papist. After the Thorn Conference of a.d. 1645, a violent controversy arose, which divided Lutherans into two camps. On the one side were the universities of Helmstadt and KŚnigsberg; on the other hand, the theologians of the electorate of [pg 041] Saxony, Hülsemann of Leipzig, Waller of Dresden, and Abr. Calov, who died professor in Wittenberg in a.d. 1686. Calov wrote twenty-six controversial treatises on this subject. Jena vainly sought to mediate between the parties. In the Theologorum Sax. Consensus repetitus Fidei vera Lutheranæ of a.d. 1655, for which the Wittenberg divines failed to secure symbolical authority, the following sentiments were branded as Syncretist errors: That in the Apostles' Creed everything is taught that is necessary to salvation; that the Catholic and Reformed systems retain hold of fundamental truths; that original sin is of a merely privative nature; that God indirecte, improprie, et per accidens is the cause of sin; that the doctrine of the Trinity was first clearly revealed in the New Testament, etc. Calixt died a.d. 1656 in the midst of most violent controversies. His son Ulrich continued these, but had neither the ability nor moderation of his father. Even the peaceably disposed Conference of Cassel of a.d. 1661 (§ 154, 4) only poured oil on the flames. The strife lost itself at last in actions for damages between the younger Calixt and his bitter opponent Strauch of Wittenberg. Wearied of these fruitless discussions, theologians now turned their attention to the rising movement of Pietism.23
3. The Pietist Controversy in its First Stage.—Philip Jacob Spener born in Alsace in a.d. 1635, was in his thirty-first year, on account of his spirituality, distinguished gifts, and singularly wide scholarship, made president of a clerical seminary at Frankfort-on-Main. In a.d. 1686 he became chief court preacher at Dresden, and provost of Berlin in a.d. 1691, when, on account of his intense earnestness in pastoral work, he had been expelled from Dresden. He died in Berlin in a.d. 1705. His year's attendance at Geneva after the completion of his curriculum at Strassburg had an important influence on his whole future career. He there learned to value discipline for securing purity of life as well as of doctrine, and was also powerfully impressed by the practical lectures of Labadie (§ 163, 7) and the reading of the “Practice of Piety” and other ascetical writings of the English Puritans (§ 162, 3). Though strongly attached to the Lutheran church, he believed that in the restoration of evangelical doctrine by the Wittenberg Reformation, “not by any means had all been accomplished that needed to be done,” and that Lutheranism in the form of the orthodoxy of the age had lost the living power of the reformers, and was in danger of burying its talent in dead and barren service of the letter. There was therefore a pressing need of a new and wider reformation. In the Lutheran church, as the depository of sound doctrine, he recognised the fittest field for the development of a [pg 042] genuinely Christian life; but he heartily appreciated any true spiritual movement in whatsoever church it arose. He went back from scholastic dogmatics to Holy Scripture as the living source of saving knowledge, substituted for the external orthodox theology the theology of the heart, demanded evidence of this in a pious Christian walk: these were the means by which he sought to promote his reformation. A whole series of Lutheran theologians of the seventeenth century (§ 159) had indeed contributed to this same end by their devotional works, hymns, and sermons. What was new in Spener was the conviction of the insufficiency of the hitherto used means and the undue prominence given to doctrine, and his consequent effort vigorously made to raise the tone of the Christian life. In his childlike, pious humility he regarded himself as by no means called to carry out this work, but felt it his duty to insist upon the necessity of it, and indicate the means that should be used to realize it. This he did in his work of a.d. 1675, “Pia Desideria.” As it was his aim to recommend biblical practical Christianity to the heart of the individual Christian, he revived the almost forgotten doctrine “Of Spiritual Priesthood” in a separate treatise. In a.d. 1670 he began to have meetings in his own house for encouraging Christian piety in the community, which soon were imitated in other places. Spener's influence on the Lutheran church became greater and wider through his position at Dresden. Stirred up by his spirit, three young graduates of Leipzig. A. H. Francke, Paul Anton, and J. K. Schade, formed in a.d. 1686 a private Collegia Philobiblica for practical exposition of Scripture and the delivery of public exegetical lectures at the university in the German language. But the Leipzig theological faculty, with J. B. Carpzov II. at its head, charged them with despising the public ordinances as well as theological science, and with favouring the views of separatists. The Collegia Philobiblica was suppressed, and the three friends obliged to leave Leipzig in a.d. 1690. This marked the beginning of the Pietist controversies. Soon afterwards Spener was expelled from Dresden; but in his new position at Berlin he secured great influence in the appointments to the theological faculty of the new university founded at Halle by the peace-loving elector Frederick III. of Brandenburg, in opposition to the contentious universities of Wittenberg and Leipzig. Francke, Anton, and Breithaupt were made professors of theology. Halle now won the position which Wittenberg and Geneva had held during the Reformation period, and the Pietist controversy thus entered upon a second, more general, and more critical epoch of its history.24—Continuation, § 166, 1.[pg 043]
4. Theological Literature (§ 142, 6).—The “Philologia Sacra” of Sol. Glassius of Jena, published in a.d. 1623, has ranked as a classical work for almost two centuries. From a.d. 1620 till the end of the century, a lively controversy was carried on about the Greek style of the New Testament, in which Lutherans, and especially the Reformed, took part. The purists maintained that the New Testament idiom was pure and classical, thinking that its inspiration would otherwise be endangered. The first historico-critical introduction to the Scriptures was the “Officina Biblica” of Walther in a.d. 1636. Pfeiffer of Leipzig gained distinction in biblical criticism and hermeneutics by his “Critica Sacra” of a.d. 1680 and “Hermeneutica” of a.d. 1684. Exegesis now made progress, notwithstanding its dependence on traditional interpretations of doctrinal proof passages and its mechanical theory of inspiration. The most distinguished exegetes were Erasmus Schmidt of Wittenberg, who died in a.d. 1637: he wrote a Latin translation of New Testament with admirable notes, and a very useful concordance of the Greek New Testament, under the title Ταμεῖον, which has been revised and improved by Bruder; Seb. Schmidt of Strassburg, who wrote commentaries on several Old Testament books and on the Pauline epistles; and Abr. Calov of Wittenberg, who died in a.d. 1686, in his 74th year, whose “Biblia Illustrata” in four vols., is a work of amazing research and learning, but composed wholly in the interests of dogmatics.—Little was done in the department of church history. Calixt awakened a new enthusiasm for historical studies, and Gottfried Arnold (§ 159, 2), pietist, chiliast, and theosophist, bitterly opposed to every form of orthodoxy, and finding true Christianity only in sects, separatists, and heretics, set the whole theological world astir by his “Unparteiische Kirchen- und Ketzer-historie,” in a.d. 1699 (§ 5, 3).
5. The orthodox school applied itself most diligently to dogmatics in a strictly scholastic form. Hutter of Wittenberg, who died in a.d. 1616, wrote “Loci communes theologici” and “Compendium Loc. Theol.” John Gerhard of Jena, who died in a.d. 1637, published in a.d. 1610 his “Loc. Theologici” in nine folio vols., the standard of Lutheran orthodoxy. J. Andr. Quenstedt of Wittenberg, who died a.d. 1688, exhibited the best and worst of Lutheran scholasticism in his “Theol. didactico-polemica.” The most important dogmatist of the Calixtine school was Conrad Horneius. Calixt himself is known as a dogmatist only by his lectures; but to him we owe the generally adopted distinction between morals and dogmatics as set forth in his “Epitome theol. Moralis.”—Polemics were carried on vigorously. Hoë von Hoënegg of Dresden (§ 154, 3, 4) and Hutter of Wittenberg were bitter opponents of Calvinism and Romanism. Hutter was styled by his friends Malleus Calvinistorum and Redonatus Lutherus. The ablest and most dignified polemic against Romanism was that of John Gerhard in his “Confessio Catholica.” [pg 044] Nich. Hunnius, son of Ægid. Hunnius, and Hutter's successor at Wittenberg, from a.d. 1623 superintendent at Lübeck, distinguished himself as an able controversialist against the papacy by his “Demonstratio Ministerii Lutherani Divini atque Legitimi.” Against the Socinians he wrote his “Examen Errorum Photinianorum,” and against the fanatics a “Chr. Examination of the new Paracelsist and Weigelian Theology.” His principal work is his “Διάσκεψις de Fundamentali Dissensu Doctrinæ Luth. et Calvin.” His “Epitome Credendorum” went through nineteen editions. The most incessant controversialist was Abr. Calov, who wrote against Syncretists, Papists, Socinians, Arminians, etc.—Continuation, § 167, 4.
The attachment of the Lutheran church of this age to pure doctrine led to a one-sided over-estimation of it, often ending in dead orthodoxy. But a succession of able and learned theologians, who recognised the importance of heart theology as well as sound doctrine, corrected this evil tendency by Scripture study, preaching, and faithful pastoral work. A noble and moderate mysticism, which was thoroughly orthodox in its beliefs, and opposing orthodoxy only where that had become external and mechanical, had many influential representatives throughout the whole country, especially during the first half of it. But also separatists, mystics, and theosophists made their appearance, who were decidedly hostile to the church. Sacred song flourished afresh amid the troubles of the Thirty Years' War; but gradually lost its sublime objective church character, which was poorly compensated by a more flowing versification, polished language, and elegant form. A corresponding advance was also made in church music.
1. Mysticism and Asceticism.—At the head of the orthodox mystics stands John Arndt. His “True Christianity” and his “Paradiesgärtlein” are the most widely read Lutheran devotional books, but called forth the bitter hostility of those devoted to the maintenance of a barren orthodoxy. He died in a.d. 1621, as general superintendent at Celle. He had been expelled from Anhalt because he would [pg 045] not condemn exorcism as godless superstition, and was afterwards in Brunswick publicly charged by his colleague Denecke and other Lutheran zealots with Papacy, Calvinism, Osiandrianism, Flacianism, Schwenckfeldism, Paracelsism, Alchemism, etc. As men of a similar spirit, anticipators of the school of Spener, may be named John Gerhard of Jena, with his “Meditationes Sacræ” and “Schola pietatis” and Christian Scriver, whose “Gotthold's Emblems” is well known to English readers. Rahtmann of Danzig maintained that the word of God in Scripture has not in itself the power to enlighten and convert men except through the gracious influence of God's Spirit. He was supported, after a long delay, in a.d. 1626 by the University of Rostock, but opposed by KŚnigsberg, Jena, and Wittenberg. In a.d. 1628, the Elector of Saxony obtained the opinion of the most famous theologians of his realm against Rahtmann; but his death, which soon followed, brought the controversy to a close.—The Württemberg theologian, John Valentine Andreä, grandson of one of the authors of the Formula of Concord, was a man of striking originality, famous for his satires on the corruptions of the age. His “Order of Rosicrucians,” published at Cassel in a.d. 1614, ridiculed the absurdities of astrology and alchemy in the form of a satirical romance. His influence on the church of his times was great and wholesome, so that even Spener exclaimed: “Had I the power to call any one from the dead for the good of the church, it would be J. V. Andreä.” His later devotional work was almost completely forgotten until attention was called to it by Herder.25
2. Mysticism and Theosophy.—A mystico-theosophical tendency, partly in outward connexion with the church, partly without and in open opposition to it, was fostered by the alchemist writings of Agrippa and Paracelsus, the theosophical works of Weigel (§ 146, 2) and by the profound revelations of the inspired shoemaker of GŚrlitz, Jacob Boehme, philosophus teutonicus, the most talented of all the theosophists. In a remarkable degree he combined a genius for speculation with the most unfeigned piety that held firmly by the old Lutheran faith. Even when an itinerant tradesman, he felt himself for a period of seven days in calm repose, surrounded by the divine light. But he dates his profound theosophical enlightenment from a moment in a.d. 1594, when as a young journeyman and married, thrown into an ecstasy, he obtained a knowledge of the divine mysteries down to the ultimate principles of all things and their inmost quality. His theosophy, too, like that of the ancient gnostics, springs out of the question about the origin of evil. He solves it by assuming [pg 046] an emanation of all things from God, in whom fire and light, bitter and sweet qualities, are thoroughly tempered and perfectly combined, while in the creature derived by emanation from him they are in disharmony, but are reconciled and reduced to godlike harmony through regeneration in Christ. Though opposed by Calov, he was befriended by the Dresden consistory. Boehme died in a.d. 1624, in retirement at GŚrlitz, in the arms of his family.26—In close connexion with Boehmists, separatists, and Pietists, yet differing from them all, Gottfried Arnold abused orthodoxy and canonized the heretics of all ages. In a.d. 1700 he wrote “The Mystery of the Divine Sophia.” When Adam, originally man and woman, fell, his female nature, the heavenly Sophia, was taken from him, and in his place a woman of flesh was made for him out of a rib; in order again to restore the paradisiacal perfection Christ brought again the male part into a virgin's womb, so that the new creature, the regenerate, stands before God as a “male-virgin”; but carnal love destroys again the connexion thus secured with the heavenly Sophia. But the very next year he reached a turning-point in his life. He not only married, but in consequence accepted several appointments in the Lutheran church, without, however, signing the Formula of Concord, and applied his literary skill to the production of devotional tracts.
3. Sacred Song (§ 142, 3).—The first epoch of the development of sacred song in this century corresponds to the period of the Thirty Years' War, a.d. 1618-1648. The Psalms of David were the model and pattern of the sacred poets, and the profoundest songs of the cross and consolation bear the evident impress of the times, and so individual feeling comes more into prominence. The influence of Opitz was also felt in the church song, in the greater attention given to correctness and purity of language and to the careful construction of verse and rhyme. Instead of the rugged terseness and vigour of earlier days, we now find often diffuse and overflowing utterances of the heart. John Hermann of Glogau, who died in a.d. 1647, composed 400 songs, embracing these: “Alas! dear Lord, what evil hast Thou done?”; “O Christ, our true and only Light”; “Ere yet the dawn hath filled the skies”; “O God, thou faithful God.” Paul Flemming, a physician in Holstein, who died in a.d. 1640, wrote on his journey to Persia, “Where'er I go, whate'er my task.” Matthew Meyffart, professor and pastor at Erfurt, who died in a.d. 1642, wrote “Jerusalem, thou city fair and high.” Martin Rinkart, pastor at Eilenburg in Saxony, who died a.d. 1648, wrote, “Now thank we all our God.” Appelles von LŚwenstern, who died a.d. 1648, composed, “When anguished and perplexed, with many a sigh and [pg 047] tear.” Joshua Stegmann, superintendent in Rinteln, who died a.d. 1632, wrote, “Abide among us with thy grace.” Joshua Wegelin, pastor in Augsburg and Pressburg, wrote, “Since Christ is gone to heaven, his home.” Justus Gesenius, superintendent in Hanover, who died in a.d. 1673, wrote, “When sorrow and remorse.” Tob. Clausnitzer, pastor in the Palatinate, who died a.d. 1648, wrote, “Blessed Jesus, at thy word.” The poets named mostly belong to the first Silesian school gathered round Opitz. A more independent position, though not uninfluenced by Opitz, is taken up by John Rist, who died in a.d. 1667. He composed 658 sacred songs, of which many are remarkable for their vigour, solemnity, and elevation; e.g. “Arise, the kingdom is at hand”; “Sink not yet, my soul, to slumber”; “O living Bread from heaven”; “Praise and thanks to Thee be sung.” At the head of the KŚnigsberg school of the same age stood Simon Dach, professor of poetry at KŚnigsberg, who died in a.d. 1659. He composed 150 spiritual songs, among which the best known are, “O how blessed, faithful souls, are ye!” “Wouldest thou inherit life with Christ on high?” The most distinguished members of this school are: Henry Alberti, organist at KŚnigsberg, author of “God who madest earth and heaven”; and George Weissel, pastor in KŚnigsberg, who died in a.d. 1655, author of “Lift up your heads, ye mighty gates.”
4. From the middle of the seventeenth century sacred song became more subjective, and so tended to fall into a diversity of groups. No longer does the church sing through its poets, but the poets give direct expression to their individual feelings. Confessional songs are less frequent, and their place is taken by hymns of edification with reference to various conditions of life; songs of death, the cross and consolation, and hymns for the family become more numerous. With objectivity special features of the church song disappear in the hymns of the period; but some of its essential characteristics remain, especially the popular form and contents, the freshness, liveliness, and simplicity of diction, the truths of personal experience, the fulness of faith, etc. We distinguish three groups: (1) The Transition Group, passing from objectivity to subjectivity. Its greatest masters, indeed after Luther the greatest sacred poet of the evangelical church, is undoubtedly Paul Gerhardt, who died a.d. 1676, the faith witness of the Lutheran faith under the wars and in persecution (§ 154, 4). In him we find the new subjective tendency in its noblest form; but there is also present the old objective style, giving immediate expression to the consciousness of the church, adhering tenaciously to the confession, and a grand popular ring that reminds us of the fulness and power of Luther. His 131 songs, if not all church songs in the narrower sense, are almost all genuine poems: e.g. “All my heart this night rejoices”; “Cometh sunshine after rain”; “Go forth, my heart, and [pg 048] seek delight”; “Be thou content: be still before”; “O world, behold upon the tree”; “Now all the woods are sleeping”; and “Ah, wounded head, must thou?” based on Bernard's Salve, caput cruentatum. To this school also belongs George Neumark, librarian at Weimar, who died in a.d. 1681, author of “Leave God to order all thy ways.” Also John Franck, burgomaster at Guben in Lusatia, who died a.d. 1677, next to Gerhardt the greatest poet of his age. His 110 songs are less popular and hearty, but more melodious than Gerhardt's; e.g. “Redeemer of the nations, come”; “Ye heavens, oh haste your dews to shed”; “Deck thyself, my soul, with gladness.” George Albinus, pastor at Naumburg, died a.d. 1679, wrote: “Not in anger smite us, Lord”; “World, farewell! Of thee I'm tired.”—(2) The next stage of the sacred song took the Canticles instead of the Psalter as its model. The spiritual marriage of the soul is its main theme. Feeling and fancy are predominant, and often degenerate into sentimentality and trifling. It obtained a new impulse from the addition of a mystical element. Angelus Silesius (§ 156, 4) was the most distinguished representative of this school, and while Protestant he composed several beautiful songs; e.g. “O Love, who formedst me to wear”; “Thou holiest Love, whom most I love”; “Loving Shepherd, kind and true.” Christian Knorr v. Rosenroth, who died at Sulzbach a.d. 1689, wrote “Dayspring of eternity.” Ludämilie Elizabeth, Countess of Schwarzburg-Rudolstadt, who died in a.d. 1672, wrote 215 “Songs of Jesus.” Caspar Neumann, professor and pastor at Breslau, died a.d. 1715, wrote, “Lord, on earth I dwell in pain.”—(3) Those of Spener's Time and Spirit, men who longed for the regeneration of the church by practical Christianity. Their hymns are for the most part characterized by healthy piety and deep godliness. Spener's own poems are of slight importance. J. Jac. Schütz, Spener's friend, a lawyer in Frankfort, who died a.d. 1690, composed only one, but that a very beautiful hymn: “All praise and thanks to God most high.” Samuel Rodigast, rector in Berlin, died a.d. 1708, wrote, “Whate'er my God ordains is right.” Laurentius Laurentii, musical director at Bremen, died a.d. 1722, wrote, “Is my heart athirst to know?” “O thou essential Word.”—Gottfried Arnold, died a.d. 1714, wrote, “Thou who breakest every chain”; “How blest to all thy followers, Lord, the road!”—In Denmark, where previously translations of German hymns were used, Thomas Kingo, from a.d. 1677 Bishop of Fünen, died a.d. 1703, was the much-honoured founder of Danish national hymnology.27—Continuation, § 166, 6.[pg 049]
5. Sacred Music (§ 142, 5).—The church music in the beginning of the seventeenth century was affected by the Italian school, just as church song was by the influence of Opitz. The greatest master during the transition stage was John Crüger, precentor in the church of St. Nicholas in Berlin, died a.d. 1662. He was to the chorale what Gerhardt was to the church song. We have seventy-one new melodies of his, admirably adapted to Gerhardt's, Hunnius's, Franck's, Dach's, and Rinkart's songs, and used in the church till the present time. With the second half of the century we enter on a new period, in which expression and musical declamation perish. Choir singing now, to a great extent, supersedes congregational singing. Henry Schütz, organist to the Elector of Saxony, died a.d. 1672, is the great master of this Italian sacred concert style. He introduced musical compositions on passages selected from the Psalms, Canticles, and prophets, in his “Symphoniæ Sacræ” of a.d. 1629. After a short time a radical reform was made by John Rosenmüller, organist of Wolfenbüttel, died a.d. 1686. A reaction against the exclusive adoption of the Italian style was made by Andr. Hammerschmidt, organist at Zittau, died a.d. 1675, one of the noblest and most pious of German musicians. By working up the old church melodies in the modern style, he brought the old hymns again into favour, and set hymns of contemporary poets to bright airs suited to modern standards of taste. The accomplished musician Rud. Ahle, organist and burgomaster at Mühlhausen, died a.d. 1673, introduced his own beautiful airs into the church music for Sundays and festivals. His sacred airs are distinguished for youthful freshness and power, penetrated by a holy earnestness, and quite free from that secularity and frivolousness which soon became unpleasantly conspicuous in such music.—Continuation, § 167, 7.
6. The Christian Life of the People.—The rich development of sacred poetry proves the wonderful fulness and spirituality of the religious life of this age, notwithstanding the many chilling separatistic controversies that prevailed during the terrible upheaval of the Thirty Years' War. The abundance of devotional literature of permanent worth witnesses to the diligence and piety of the Lutheran pastors. Ernest the Pious of Saxe-Gotha, who died a.d. 1675, stands forth as the ideal of a Christian prince. For the Christian instruction of his people he issued, in the midst of the confusion and horrors of the war, the famous Weimar or Ernestine exposition of the Bible, upon which John Gerhard wrought diligently, along with other distinguished Jena theologians. It appeared first in a.d. 1641, and by a.d. 1768 had gone through fourteen large editions. A like service was done for South Germany by the “Württemberg Summaries,” composed by three Württemberg theologians at the request of Duke Eberhard III., a concise, practical exposition of all the books of Scripture, which for a century and a [pg 050] half formed the basis of the weekly services (Bibelstunden) at Württemberg.—Continuation, § 167, 8.
7. Missions.—In the Lutheran church, missionary enterprise had rather fallen behind (§ 142, 8). Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden carried on the Lapp mission with new zeal, and Denmark, too, gave ready assistance. A Norwegian pastor, Thomas Westen, deserves special mention as the apostle of the mission. A German, Peter Heyling of Lübeck, went on his own account as a missionary to Abyssinia in a.d. 1635, while several of his friends at the same time went to other eastern lands. Of these others no trace whatever has been found. An Abyssinian abbot who came to Europe brought news of Heyling. At first he was hindered by the machinations of the Jesuits; but when these were expelled, he found favour at court, became minister to the king, and married one of the royal family. What finally came of him and his work is unknown. Toward the end of the century two great men, the philosopher Leibnitz and the founder of the Halle Orphanage, A. H. Francke, warmly espoused the cause of foreign missions. The ambitious and pretentious schemes of the philosopher ended in nothing, but Francke made his orphanages, training colleges and centres from which the German Lutheran missions to the heathens were vigorously organized and successfully wrought.—Continuation, § 167, 9.
The Reformed scholars of France vied with those of St. Maur and the Oratory, and the Reformed theologians of the Netherlands, England, and Switzerland were not a whit behind. But an attempt made at a general synod at Dort to unite all the Reformed national churches under one confession failed. Opposition to Calvin's extreme theory of predestination introduced a Pelagianizing current into the Reformed church, which was by no means confined to professed Arminians. In the Anglican church this tendency appeared in the forms of latitudinarianism and deism (§ 164, 3); while in France it took a more moderate course, and approximated rather to the Lutheran doctrine. It was a reaction of latent Zwinglianism against the dominant Calvinism. The Voetian school successfully opposed the introduction [pg 051] of the Cartesian philosophy, and secured supremacy to a scholasticism which held its own alongside of that of the Lutherans. In opposition to it, the Cocceian federal school undertook to produce a purely biblical system of theology in all its departments.
1. Preliminaries of the Arminian Controversy.—In the Confessio Belgica of a.d. 1562 the Protestant Netherlands had already a strictly Calvinistic symbol, but Calvinism had not thoroughly permeated the church doctrine and constitution. There were more opponents than supporters of the doctrine of predestination, and a Melanchthonian-synergistic (§ 141, 7), or even an Erasmian-semipelagian, (§ 125, 3) doctrine, of the freedom of the will and the efficacy of grace, was more frequently taught and preached than the Augustinian-Calvinistic doctrine. So also Zwingli's view of the relation of church and state was in much greater favour than the Calvinistic Presbyterial church government with its terrorist discipline. But the return of the exiles in a.d. 1572, who had adopted strict Calvinistic views in East Friesland and on the Lower German Rhine, led to the adoption of a purely Calvinistic creed and constitution. The keenest opponent of this movement was Coornhert, notary and secretary for the city of Haarlem, who combated Calvinism in numerous writings, and depreciated doctrine generally in the interests of practical living Christianity. Political as well as religious sympathies were enlisted in favour of this freer ecclesiastical tendency. The Dutch War of Independence was a struggle for religious freedom against Spanish Catholic fanaticism. The young republic therefore became the first home of religious toleration, which was scarcely reconcilable with a strict and exclusive Calvinism.—Meanwhile within the Calvinistic church a controversy arose, which divided its adherents in the Netherlands into two parties. In opposition to the strict Calvinists, who as supralapsarians held that the fall itself was included in the eternal counsels of God, there arose the milder infralapsarians, who made predestination come in after the fall, which was not predestinated but only foreseen by God.
2. The Arminian Controversy.—In a.d. 1588, James Arminius (born a.d. 1560), a pupil of Beza, but a declared adherent of the Ramist philosophy (§ 143, 6), was appointed pastor in Amsterdam, and ordered by the magistrates to controvert Coornhert's universalism and the infralapsarianism of the ministers of Delft. He therefore studied Coornhert's writings, and by them was shaken in his earlier beliefs. This was shown first in certain sermons on passages from Romans, which made him suspected of Pelagianism. In a.d. 1603 he [pg 052] was made theological professor of Leyden, where he found a bitter opponent in his supralapsarian colleague, Francis Gomarus. From the class-rooms the controversy spread to the pulpits, and even into domestic circles. A public disputation in a.d. 1608, led to no pacific result, and Arminius continued involved in controversies till his death in a.d. 1609. Although decidedly inclined toward universalism, he had directed his polemic mainly against supralapsarianism, as making God himself the author of sin. But his followers went beyond these limits. When denounced by the Gomarists as Pelagians, they addressed to the provincial parliament of Holland and West Friesland, in a.d. 1610, a remonstrance, which in five articles repudiates supralapsarianism and infralapsarianism, and the doctrines of the irresistibility of grace, and of the impossibility of the elect finally falling away from it, and boldly asserts the universality of grace. They were hence called Remonstrants and their opponents Contraremonstrants. Parliament, favourably inclined toward the Arminians, pronounced the difference non-fundamental, and enjoined peace. When Vorstius, who was practically a Socinian, was appointed successor to Arminius, Gomarus charged the Remonstrants with Socinianism. Their ablest theological representative was Simon Episcopius, who succeeded Gomarus at Leyden in a.d. 1612, supported by the distinguished statesman, Oldenbarneveldt, and the great jurist, humanist, and theologian, Hugo Grotius of Rotterdam. Maurice of Orange, too, for a long time sided with them, but in a.d. 1617 formally went over to the other party, whose well-knit unity, strict discipline, and rigorous energy commended them to him as the fittest associates in his struggle for absolute monarchy. The republican-Arminian party was conquered, Oldenbarneveldt being executed in 1619, Grotius escaping by his wife's strategem. The Synod of Dort was convened for the purpose of settling doctrinal disputes. It held 154 sessions, from Nov. 13th, 1618, to May 9th, 1619. Invitations were accepted by twenty-eight theologians from England, Scotland, Germany, and Switzerland. Brandenburg took no part in it (§ 154, 3), and French theologians were refused permission to go. Episcopius presented a clear and comprehensive apology for the Remonstrants, and bravely defended their cause before the synod. Refusing to submit to the decisions of the synod, they were at the fifty-seventh session expelled, and then excommunicated and deprived of all ecclesiastical offices. The Heidelberg Catechism and the Belgic Confession were unanimously adopted as the creed and manual of orthodox teaching. In the discussion of the five controverted points, the opposition of the Anglican and German delegates prevented any open and manifest insertion of supralapsarian theses, so that the synodal canons set forth only an essentially infralapsarian theory of predestination.—Remonstrant [pg 053] teachers were now expelled from most of the states of the union. Only after Maurice's death in a.d. 1625 did they venture to return, and in a.d. 1630 they were allowed by statute to erect churches and schools in all the states. A theological seminary at Amsterdam, presided over by Episcopius till his death, in a.d. 1643, rose to be a famous seat of learning and nursery of liberal studies. The number of congregations, however, remained small, and their importance in church history consists rather in the development of an independent church life than in the revival of a semipelagian and rationalistic type of doctrine.28
3. Consequences of the Arminian Controversy.—The Dort decrees were not accepted in Brandenburg, Hesse, and Bremen, where a moderate Calvinism continued to prevail. In England and Scotland the Presbyterians enthusiastically approved of the decrees, whereas the Episcopalians repudiated them, and, rushing to the other extreme of latitudinarianism, often showed lukewarm indifferentism in the way in which they distinguished articles of faith as essential and non-essential. The worthiest of the latitudinarians of this age was Chillingworth, who sought an escape from the contentions of theologians in the Catholic church, but soon returned to Protestantism, seeking and finding peace in God's word alone. Archbishop Tillotson was a famous pulpit orator, and Gilbert Burnet, who died a.d. 1715, was author of a “History of the English Reformation.” In the French Reformed church, where generally strict Calvinism prevailed, Amyrault of Saumur, who died a.d. 1664, taught a universalismus hypotheticus, according to which God by a decretum universale et hypotheticum destined all men to salvation through Jesus Christ, even the heathen, on the ground of a fides implicita. The only condition is that they believe, and for this all the means are afforded in gratia resistibilis, while by a decretum absolutum et speciale only to elect persons is granted the gratia irresistibilis. The synods of Alençon, a.d. 1637, and Charenton, a.d. 1644, supported by Blondel, Daillé, and Claude, declared these doctrines allowable; but Du Moulin of Sedan, Rivetus and Spanheim of Leyden, Maresius of Groningen, and others, offered violent opposition. Amyrault's colleague, De la Place, or [pg 054] Placæus, who died a.d. 1655, went still further, repudiating the unconditional imputation of Adam's sin, and representing original sin simply as an evil which becomes guilt only as our own actual transgression. The synods just named condemned this doctrine. Somewhat later Claude Pajon of Saumur, who died a.d. 1685, roused a bitter discussion about the universality of grace, by maintaining that in conversion divine providence wrought only through the circumstances of the life, and the Holy Spirit through the word of God. Several French synods condemned this doctrine, and affirmed an immediate as well as a mediate operation of the Spirit and providence.—Genuine Calvinism was best represented in Switzerland, as finally expressed in the Formula Consensus Helvetica of Heidegger of Zürich, adopted in a.d. 1675 by most of the cantons. It was, like the Formula Concordiæ, a manual of doctrine rather than a confession. In opposition to Amyrault and De la Place, it set forth a strict theory of predestination and original sin, and maintained with the Buxtorfs, against Cappellus of Saumur, the inspiration of the Hebrew vowel points.
4. The Cocceian and Cartesian Controversies.—If not the founder, certainly the most distinguished representative in the Netherlands of that scholasticism which sought to expound and defend orthodoxy, was Voetius, who died a.d. 1676, from a.d. 1607 pastor in various places, and from a.d. 1634 professor at Utrecht. A completely different course was pursued by Cocceius of Bremen, who died a.d. 1669, professor at Franeker in a.d. 1636, and at Leyden in a.d. 1650. The famous Zürich theologian, Bullinger (§ 138, 7), had in his “Compend. Rel. Chr.” of a.d. 1556, viewed the whole doctrine of saving truth from the point of view of a covenant of grace between God and man; and this idea was afterwards carried out by Olevianus of Heidelberg (§ 144, 1) in his “De Substantia Fœderis,” of a.d. 1585. This became the favourite method of distribution of doctrine in the whole German Reformed church. In the Dutch church it was regarded as quite unobjectionable. In England it was adopted in the Westminster Confession of a.d. 1648 (§ 155, 1), and in Switzerland in a.d. 1675, in the Formula Consensus. Cocceius is therefore not the founder of the federal theology. He simply gave it a new and independent development, and freed it from the trammels of scholastic dogmatics. He distinguished a twofold covenant of God with man: the fœdus operum s. naturæ before, and the fœdus gratiæ after the fall. He then subdivided the covenant of grace into three economies: before the law until Moses; under the law until Christ; and after the law in the Christian church. The history of the kingdom of God in the Christian era was arranged in seven periods, corresponding to the seven apocalyptic epistles, trumpets, and seals. In his treatment of [pg 055] his theme, he repudiated philosophy, scholasticism, and tradition, and held simply by Scripture. He is thus the founder of a purely biblical theology. He attached himself as closely as possible to the prevailing predestinationist orthodoxy, but only externally. In his view the sacred history in its various epochs adjusted itself to the needs of human personality, and to the growing capacity for appropriating it. Hence it was not the idea of election, but that of grace, that prevailed in his system. Christ is the centre of all history, spiritual, ecclesiastical, and civil; and so everything in Scripture, history, doctrine, and prophecy, necessarily and immediately stands related to him. The O.T. prophecies and types point to the Christ that was to come in the flesh, and all history after Christ points to his second coming; and O. and N.T. give an outline of ecclesiastical and civil history down to the end of time. Thus typology formed the basis of the Cocceian theology. In exegesis, however, Cocceius avoided all arbitrary allegorizing. It was with him an axiom in hermeneutics, Id significan verba, quod significare possunt in integra oratione, sic ut omnino inter se conveniant. Yet his typology led him, and still more many of his adherents, into fantastic exegetical errors in the prophetic treatment of the seven apocalyptic periods.
5. A controversy, occasioned by Cocceius' statement, in his commentary on Hebrews in a.d. 1658, that the Sabbath, as enjoined by the O.T. ceremonial law, was no longer binding, was stopped in a.d. 1659 by a State prohibition. Voetius had not taken part in it. But when Cocceius, in a.d. 1665, taught from Romans iii. 25, that believers under the law had not full “ἄφεσις,” only a “πάρεσις,” he felt obliged to enter the lists against this “Socinian” heresy. The controversy soon spread to other doctrines of Cocceius and his followers, and soon the whole populace seemed divided into Voetians and Cocceians (§ 162, 5). The one hurled offensive epithets at the other. The Orange political party sought and obtained the favour of the Voetians, as before they had that of the Gomarists; while the liberal republican party coalesced with the Cocceians. Philosophical questions next came to be mixed up in the discussion. The philosophy of the French Catholic Descartes (§ 164, 1), settled in a.d. 1629 in Amsterdam, had gained ground in the Netherlands. It had indeed no connexion with Christianity or church, and its theological friends wished only to have it recognised as a formal branch of study. But its fundamental principle, that all true knowledge starts from doubt, appeared to the representatives of orthodoxy as threatening the church with serious danger. Even in a.d. 1643 Voetius opposed it, and mainly in consequence of his polemic, the States General, in a.d. 1656, forbad it being taught in the universities. Their common opposition to scholasticism, however, brought Cocceians and Cartesians more closely to one [pg 056] another. Theology now became influenced by Cartesianism. Roëll, professor at Franeker and Utrecht, who died a.d. 1718, taught that the divinity of the Scriptures must be proved to the reason, since the testimonium Spir. s. internum is limited to those who already believe, rejected the doctrine of the imputation of original sin, the doctrine that death is for believers the punishment of sin, and the application of the idea of eternal “generation” to the Logos, to whom the predicate of sonship belongs only in regard to the decree of redemption and incarnation. Another zealous Cartesian, Balth. Bekker, not only repudiated the superstitions of the age about witchcraft (§ 117, 4), but also denied the existence of the devil and demons. The Cocceians were in no way responsible for such extravagances, but their opponents sought to make them chargeable for these. The stadtholder, William III., at last issued an order, in a.d. 1694, which checked for a time the violence of the strife.
6. Theological Literature.—Biblical oriental philology flourished in the Reformed church of this age. Drusius of Franeker, who died a.d. 1616, was the greatest Old Testament exegete of his day. The two Buxtorfs of Basel, the father died a.d. 1629, the son a.d. 1664, the greatest Christian rabbinical scholars, wrote Hebrew and Chaldee grammars, lexicons, and concordances, and maintained the antiquity and even inspiration of the Hebrew vowel points against Cappellus of Saumur. Hottinger of Zürich, who died a.d. 1667, vied with both in his knowledge of oriental literature and languages, and wrote extensively on biblical philology, and besides found time to write a comprehensive and learned church history. Cocceius, too, occupies a respectable place among Hebrew lexicographers. In England, both before and after the Restoration, scholarship was found, not among the controversial Puritans, but among the Episcopal clergy. Brian Walton, who died a.d. 1661, aided by the English scholars, issued an edition of the “London Polyglott” in six vols., in a.d. 1657, which, in completeness of material and apparatus, as well as in careful textual criticism, leaves earlier editions far behind. Edm. Castellus of Cambridge in a.d. 1669 published his celebrated “Lexicon Heptaglottum.” The Elzevir printing-house at Amsterdam and Leyden, boldly assuming the prerogatives of the whole body of theological scholars, issued a textus receptus of the N.T. in a.d. 1624. The best established exegetical results of earlier times were collected by Pearson in his great compendium, the “Critici Sacri,” nine vols. fol., London, 1660; and Matthew Pool in his “Synopsis Criticorum,” five vols. fol., London, 1669. Among the exegetes of this time the brothers, J. Cappellus of Sedan, who died a.d. 1624, and Louis Cappellus II. of Saumur, who died a.d. 1658, were distinguished for their linguistic knowledge and liberal criticism. Pococke of Oxford and Lightfoot of Cambridge were specially eminent [pg 057] orientalists. Cocceius wrote commentaries on almost all the books of Scripture, and his scholar Vitringa of Franeker, who died a.d. 1716, gained great reputation by his expositions of Isaiah and the Apocalypse. Among the Arminians the famous statesman Grotius, who died a.d. 1645, was the greatest master of grammatico-historical exposition in the century, and illustrated Scripture from classical literature and philology. The Reformed church too gave brilliant contributions to biblical archæology and history. John Selden wrote “De Syndriis Vett. Heb.,” “De diis Syris,” etc. Goodwin wrote “Moses and Aaron.” Ussher wrote “Annales V. et N.T.” Spencer wrote “De Legibus Heb.” The Frenchman Bochart, in his “Hierozoicon” and “Phaleg,” made admirable contributions to the natural history and geography of the Bible.
7. Dogmatic theology was cultivated mainly in the Netherlands. Maccovius, a Pole, who died a.d. 1644, a professor at Franeker, introduced the scholastic method into Reformed dogmatics. The Synod of Dort cleared him of the charge of heresy made against him by Amesius, but condemned his method. Yet it soon came into very general use. Its chief representatives were Maresius of Groningen, Voetius and Mastricht of Utrecht, Hoornbeck of Leyden, and the German Wendelin, rector of Zerbst. Among the Cocceians the most distinguished were Heidanus of Leyden, Alting of Groningen, and, above all, Hermann Witsius of Franeker, whose “Economy of the Covenants” is written in a conciliatory spirit. The most distinguished Arminian dogmatist after Episcopius was Phil. Limborch of Amsterdam, who died a.d. 1712, in high repute also as an apologist, exegete, and historian. The greatest dogmatist of the Anglican church was Pearson, who died a.d. 1686, author of “An Exposition of the Creed.” The Frenchman Peyrerius obtained great notoriety from his statement, founded on Romans v. 12, that Adam was merely the ancestor of the Jews (Gen. ii. 7), while the Gentiles were of pre-Adamite origin (Gen. i. 26), and also by maintaining that the flood had been only partial. He gained release from prison by joining the Catholic church and recanted, but still held by his earlier views.—Ethics, consisting hitherto of little more than an exposition of the decalogue, was raised by Amyrault into an independent science. Amesius dealt with cases of conscience. Grotius, in his “De Veritate Relig. Chr.” and Abbadie, French pastor at Berlin, and afterwards in London, who died a.d. 1727, in his “Vérité de la Rel. Chrét.,” distinguished themselves as apologists. Claude and Jurieu gained high reputation as controversialists against Catholicism and its persecution of the Huguenots.—The Reformed church also in the interests of polemics pursued historical studies. Hottinger of Zürich, Spanheim of Leyden, Sam. Basnage of Zütpfen, and Jac. Basnage of the Hague, produced general church histories. Among the [pg 058] numerous historical monographs the most important are Hospinian's “De Templis,” “De Monachis,” “De Festis,” “Hist. Sacramentaria,” “Historia Jesuitica”; Blondel's “Ps.-Isidorus,” “De la Primauté de l'Egl.,” “Question si une Femme a été Assisse au Siège Papal” (§ 82, 6), “Apologia sent. Hieron. de Presbyt.” Also Daillé of Saumur on the non-genuineness of the “Apostolic Constitutions” and the Ps.-Dionysian writings, and his “De Usu Patrum” in opposition to Cave's Catholicizing over-estimation of the Fathers. We have also the English scholar Ussher, who died a.d. 1656, “Brit. Ecclesiarum Antiquitates”; H. Dodwell, who died a.d. 1711, “Diss. Cyprianicæ,” etc.; Wm. Cave, who died a.d. 1713, “Hist. of App. and Fathers,” “Scriptorum Ecclst. Hist. Literaria,” etc.—Special mention should be made of Eisenmenger, professor of oriental languages at Heidelberg. In his “Entdecktes Judenthum,” two vols. quarto, moved by the over-bearing arrogance of the Jews of his day, he made an immense collection of absurdities and blasphemies of rabbinical theology from Jewish writings. At his own expense he printed 2,000 copies; for these the Jews offered him 12,000 florins, but he demanded 30,000. They now persuaded the court at Venice to confiscate them before a single copy was sold. Eisenmenger died in a.d. 1704, and his heirs vainly sought to have the copies of his work given up to them. Even the appeal of Frederick I. of Prussia was refused. Only when the king had resolved, in a.d. 1711, at his own expense to publish an edition from one copy that had escaped confiscation, was the Frankfort edition at last given back.
8. The Apocrypha Controversy (§ 136, 4).—In a.d. 1520 Carlstadt raised the question of the books found only in the LXX., and answered it in the style of Jerome (§ 59, 1). Luther gave them in his translation as an appendix to the O.T. with the title “Apocrypha, i.e. Books, not indeed of Holy Scripture, but useful and worthy to be read.” Reformed confessions took up the same position. The Belgic Confession agreed indeed that these books should be read in church, and proof passages taken from them, in so far as they were in accord with the canonical Scriptures. The Anglican Book of Common Prayer gives readings from these books. On the other hand, although at the Synod of Dort the proposal to remove at least the apocryphal books of Ezra or Esdras, Tobit, Judith, Bel and the Dragon, was indeed rejected, it was ordered that in future all apocryphal books should be printed in smaller type than the canonical books, should be separately paged, with a special title, and with a preface and marginal notes where necessary. Their exclusion from all editions of the Bible was first insisted on by English and Scotch Puritans. This example was followed by the French, but not by the German, Swiss, and Dutch Reformed churches.—Continuation, § 182, 4.
The religious life in the Reformed church is characterized generally by harsh legalism, rigorous renunciation of the world, and a thorough earnestness, coupled with decision and energy of will, which nothing in the world can break or bend. It is the spirit of Calvin which impresses on it this character, and determines its doctrine. Only where Calvin's influence was less potent, e.g. in the Lutheranized German Reformed, the catholicized Anglican Episcopal Church, and among the Cocceians, is this tendency less apparent or altogether wanting. On the other hand, often carried to the utmost extreme, it appears among the English Puritans (§§ 143, 3; 155, 1) and the French Huguenots (§ 153, 4), where it was fostered by persecution and oppression.
1. England and Scotland.—During the period of the English Revolution (§ 155, 1, 2), after the overthrow of Episcopacy, Puritanism became dominant; and the incongruous and contradictory elements already existing within it assumed exaggerated proportions (§ 143, 3, 4), until at last the opposing parties broke out into violent contentions with one another. The ideal of Scottish and English Presbyterianism was the setting up of the kingdom of Christ as a theocracy, in which church and state were blended after the O.T. pattern. Hence all the institutions of church and state were to be founded on Scripture models, while all later developments were set aside as deteriorations from that standard. The ecclesiastical side of this ideal was to be realized by the establishment of a spiritual aristocracy represented in presbyteries and synods, which, ruling the presbyteries through the synods, and the congregations through the presbyteries, regarded itself as called and under obligation to inspect and supervise all the details of the private as well as public life of church members, and all this too by Divine right. Regarding their system as alone having divine institution, Presbyterians could not recognise any other religious or ecclesiastical party, and must demand uniformity, not only in regard to doctrine and creed, but also in regard to constitution, discipline, [pg 060] and worship.30—On the other hand, Independent Congregationalism, inasmuch as it made prominent the N.T. ideas of the priesthood of all believers and spiritual freedom, demanded unlimited liberty to each separate congregation, and unconditional equality for all individual church members. It thus rejected the theocratic ideal of Presbyterianism, strove after a purely democratic constitution, and recognised toleration of all religious views as a fundamental principle of Christianity. Every attempt to secure uniformity and stability of forms of worship was regarded as a repressing of the Spirit of God operating in the church, and so alongside of the public services private conventicles abounded, in which believers sought to promote mutual edification. But soon amid the upheavals of this agitated period a fanatical spirit spread among the various sects of the Independents. The persecutions under Elizabeth and the Stuarts had awakened a longing for the return of the Lord, and the irresistible advance of Cromwell's army, composed mostly of Independents, made it appear as if the millennium was close at hand. Thus chiliasm came to be a fundamental principle of Independency, and soon too prophecy made its appearance to interpret and prepare the way for that which was coming. From the Believers of the old Dutch times we now come to the Saints of the early Cromwell period. These regarded themselves as called, in consequence of their being inspired by God's Spirit, to form the “kingdom of the saints” on earth promised in the last days, and hence also, from Daniel ii. and vii., they were called Fifth Monarchy Men. The so called Short Parliament of a.d. 1653, in which these Saints were in a majority, had already laid the first stones of this structure by introducing civil marriage, with the strict enforcement, however, of Matthew v. 32, as well as by the abolition of all rights of patronage and all sorts of ecclesiastical taxes, when Cromwell dissolved it. The Saints had not and would not have any fixed, formulated theological system. They had, however, a most lively interest in doctrine, and produced a great diversity of Scripture expositions and dogmatic views, so that their deadly foes, the Presbyterians, could hurl against them old and new heretical designations by the hundred. The fundamental doctrine of predestination, common to all Puritans, was, even with them, for the most part, a presupposition of all theological speculation.
2. At the same time with the Saints there appeared among the Independents the Levellers, political and social revolutionists, rather than an ecclesiastical and religious sect. They were unjustly charged [pg 061] with claiming an equal distribution of goods. Over against the absolutist theories of the Stuarts, all the Independents maintained that the king, like all other civil magistrates, is answerable at all times and in all circumstances to the people, to whom all sovereignty originally and inalienably belongs. This principle was taken by the Levellers as the starting-point of their reforms. As their first regulative principle in reconstructing the commonwealth and determining the position of the church therein they did not take the theocratic constitution of the O.T., as the Presbyterians did, nor the biblical revelation of the N.T., as the moderate Independents did, nor even the modern professed prophecy of the “Saints,” but the law of nature as the basis of all revelation, and already grounded in creation, with the sovereignty of the people as its ultimate foundation. While the rest of the Independents held by the idea of a Christian state, and only claimed that all Christian denominations, with the exception of the Catholics (§ 153, 6), should enjoy all political rights, the Levellers demanded complete separation of church and state. This therefore implied, on the one hand, the non-religiousness of the state, and, on the other, again with the exception of Catholics, the absolute freedom, independence, and equality of all religious parties, even non-Christian sects and atheists. Yet all the while the Levellers themselves were earnestly and warmly attached to Christian truth as held by the other Independents.—Roger Williams (§ 163, 3), a Baptist minister, in a.d. 1631 transplanted the first seeds of Levellerism from England to North America, and by his writings helped again to spread those views in England. When he returned home in a.d. 1651 he found the sect already flourishing. The ablest leader of the English Levellers was John Lilburn. In a.d. 1638, when scarcely twenty years old, he was flogged and sentenced to imprisonment for life, because he had printed Puritan writings in Holland and had them circulated in England. Released on the outbreak of the Revolution, he joined the Parliamentary army, was taken prisoner by the Royalists and sentenced to death, but escaped by flight. He was again imprisoned for writing libels on the House of Lords. Set free by the Rump Parliament, he became colonel in Cromwell's army, but was banished the country when it was found that the spread of radicalism endangered discipline. Till the dissolution of the Short Parliament his followers were in thorough sympathy with the Saints. Afterwards their ways went more and more apart; the Saints drifted into Quakerism (§ 163, 4), while the Levellers degenerated into deism (§ 164, 3).
3. Out of the religious commotion prevailing in England before, during, and after the Revolution there sprang up a voluminous devotional literature, intended to give guidance and directions for holy [pg 062] living. Its influence was felt in foreign lands, especially in the Reformed churches of the continent, and even German Lutheran Pietism was not unaffected by it (§ 159, 3). That this movement was not confined to the Puritans, among whom it had its origin, is seen from the fact that during the seventeenth century many such treatises were issued from the University Press of Cambridge. Lewis Bayly, Bishop of Bangor a.d. 1616-1632, wrote one of the most popular books of this kind, “The Practice of Piety,” which was in a.d. 1635 in its thirty-second and in a.d. 1741 in its fifty-first edition, and was also widely circulated in Dutch, French, German, Hungarian, and Polish translations.—Out of the vast number of important personages of the Revolution period we name the following three: (1) In John Milton, the highly gifted poet as well as eloquent and powerful politician, born a.d. 1608, died a.d. 1674, we find, on the basis of a liberal classical training received in youth, all the motive powers of Independency, from the original Puritan zeal for the faith and Reformation to the politico-social radicalism of the Levellers, combined in full and vigorous operation. From Italy, the beloved land of classical science and artistic culture, he was called back to England in a.d. 1640 at the first outburst of freedom-loving enthusiasm (§ 155, 1), and made the thunder of his controversial treatises ring over the battlefield of parties. He fought against the narrowness of Presbyterian control of conscience not less energetically than against the hierarchism of the Episcopal church; vindicates the permissibility of divorce (in view, no doubt, of his own first unhappy marriage); advanced in his “Areopagitica” of a.d. 1644 a plea for the unrestricted liberty of the press; pulverized in his “Iconoclastes” of a.d. 1649 the Εἰκὼν βασιλικηή, ascribed to Charles I.; in several tracts, “Defensio pro Populo Anglicano” etc., justified the execution of the king against Salmasius's “Defensio Regia pro Carolo I.”; and, even after he had in a.d. 1652 become incurably blind, he continued unweariedly his polemics till silenced by the Restoration. The “Iconoclastes” and “Defensio” were burned by the hangman, but he himself was left unmolested. He now devoted himself to poetry. “Paradise Lost” appeared in a.d. 1665, and “Paradise Regained” in a.d. 1671. To this period, when he had probably turned his back on all existing religious parties, belongs the composition of his “De doctrina Christiana,” a first attempt at a purely biblical theology, Arian in its Christology and Arminian in its soteriology.31—(2) Richard Baxter, born a.d. 1615, died a.d. 1691, was quite a different sort of man, and showed throughout a decidedly ironical tendency. At once attracted and repelled by the Independent movement in [pg 063] Cromwell's army, he joined the force in a.d. 1645 as military chaplain, hoping to moderate, if not to check, their extravagances. A severe illness obliged him to withdraw in a.d. 1647. After his recovery he returned to his former post as assistant-minister at Kidderminster in Worcestershire, and there remained till driven out by the Act of Uniformity of a.d. 1662 (§ 155, 3). Those fourteen years formed the period of his most successful labours. He then composed most of his numerous devotional works, three of which, “The Saint's Everlasting Rest,” “The Reformed Pastor,” “A Call to the Unconverted,” are still widely read in the original and in translations. At first he hoped much from the Restoration; but when, on conscientious grounds, he refused a bishopric, he met only with persecution, ill treatment, and imprisonment. Through William's Act of Toleration of a.d. 1689, he was allowed to pass the last year of his life in London. On the doctrine of predestination he took the moderate position of Amyrault (§ 161, 3). His ideal church constitution was a blending of Presbyterianism and Episcopacy, by restoring the original episcopal constitution of the second century, when even the smaller churches had each its own bishop with a presbytery by his side.32—(3) John Bunyan, born a.d. 1628, died a.d. 1688, was in his youth a tinker or brazier, and as such seems to have led a rough, wild life. On the outbreak of the Civil War in a.d. 1642, he was drafted into the Parliamentary army.33 At the close of the war he married a poor girl from a Puritan family, whose only marriage portion consisted in two Puritan books of devotion. It was now that the birthday of a new spiritual life began to dawn in him. He joined the Baptist Independents, the most zealous of the Saints of that time, was baptized by them in a.d. 1655, and travelled the country as a preacher, attracting thousands around him everywhere by his glorious eloquence. In a.d. 1660 he was thrown into prison, from which he was released by the Indulgence of a.d. 1672 (§ 155, 3). He now settled in Bedford, and from this time till his death, amid persecution and oppression, continued his itinerant preaching with ever-increasing zeal and success. “The Pilgrim's Progress” was written by him in [pg 064] prison. It is an allegory of the freshest and most lively form, worthy to rank alongside the “Imitation of Christ” (§ 114, 7). In it the fanatical endeavour of the Saints to rear a millennial kingdom on earth is transfigured into a struggle overcoming all hindrances to secure an entrance into the heavenly Zion above. It has passed through numberless editions, and has been translated into almost all known languages.34
4. The Netherlands.—From England the Reformed Pietism was transplanted to the Netherlands, where William Teellinck may be regarded as its founder. After finishing his legal studies he resided for a while in England, where he made the acquaintance of the Puritans and their writings, and was deeply impressed with their earnest and pious family life. He then went to Leyden to study theology, and in a.d. 1606 began a ministry that soon bore fruit. He was specially blessed at Middelburg in Zealand, where he died a.d. 1629. His writings, larger and smaller, more than a hundred in number, in which a peculiar sweetness of mystical love for the Redeemer is combined with stern Calvinistic views, after the style of St. Bernard, were circulated widely in numerous editions, eagerly read in many lands, and for fully a century exerted a powerful influence throughout the whole Reformed church. Teellinck in no particular departed from the prevailing orthodoxy, but unwittingly toned down its harshness in his tracts, and with the gentleness characteristic of him counselled brotherly forbearance amid the bitterness of the Arminian controversy. In spite of much hostility, which his best efforts could not prevent, many university theologians stood by his side as warm admirers of his writings. It will not be wondered at that among these was the pious Amesius of Franeker (§ 161, 7), the scholar of the able Perkins (§ 143, 5); but it is more surprising to find here the powerful champion of scholastic orthodoxy, Voetius of Utrecht, and his vigorous partisan, Hoornbeeck of Leyden. Voetius especially, who even in his preacademic career as a pastor had pursued a peculiarly exemplary and godly life, styled Teellinck the Reformed Thomas à Kempis, and owned his deep indebtedness to his devout writings. He opened his academic course in a.d. 1634 with an introductory discourse, “De Pietate cum Scientia conjungenda,” and year after year gave lectures on ascetical theology, out of which [pg 065] grew his treatise published in a.d. 1664, “Τὰ Ἀσκητικὰ s. Exercita Pietatis in usum Juventutis Acad.,” which is a complete exposition of evangelical practical divinity in a thoroughly scholastic form.
5. During the controversy in the Dutch Reformed Church between Voetians and Cocceians, beginning in a.d. 1658, the former favoured the pietistic movement. In the German Pietist controversy the Cocceians were with the Pietists in their biblical orthodoxy joined with confessional indifferentism, but with the orthodox in their liberality and breadth on matters of life and conduct. The earnest, practical piety of the Voetians, again, made them sympathise with the Lutheran Pietists, and their zeal for pure doctrine and the Church confession brought them into relation with the orthodox Lutherans. As discord between the theologians arose over the obligation of the Sabbath law, so the difference among the people arose out of the question of Sabbath observance. The Voetians maintained that the decalogue prohibition of any form of work on Sabbath was still fully binding, while the Cocceians, on the ground of Mark ii. 27, Galatians iv. 9, Colossians ii. 16, etc., denied its continued obligation, their wives often, to the annoyance of the Voetians, sitting in the windows after Divine service with their knitting or sewing. But the opposition did not stop there; it spread into all departments of life. The Voetians set great value upon fasting and private meditation, avoided all public games and plays, dressed plainly, and observed a simple, pious mode of life; their pastors wore a clerical costume, etc. The Cocceians, again, fell in with the customs of the time, mingled freely in the mirth and pastimes of the people, went to public festivals and entertainments, their women dressed in elegant, stylish attire, their pastors were not bound by hard and fast symbols, but had full Scripture freedom, etc.—Continuation, § 169, 2.
6. France, Germany, and Switzerland.—The Reformed church of France has gained imperishable renown as a martyr-church. Fanatical excesses, however, appeared among the prophets of the Cevennes (§ 153, 4), the fruits of which continued down into the eighteenth century, and appeared now and again in England, Holland, and Germany (§ 160, 2, 7).—In Germany the Reformed church, standing side by side with the numerically far larger Lutheran church, had much of the sternness and severity that characterized the Romanic-Calvinistic party in doctrine, worship, and life greatly modified; but where the Reformed element was predominant, as in the Lower Rhine, it was correspondingly affected by a contrary influence. The Reformed church in Germany in its service of praise kept to the psalms of Marot and Lobwasser (§ 143, 2). Maurice of Hesse published Lobwasser's in a.d. 1612, accompanied by some new bright melodies, for the use of the churches in the land. Lutheran hymns, however, gradually [pg 066] found their way into the Reformed church, which also produced two gifted poets of its own. Louisa Henrietta, Princess of Orange, wife of the great elector, and Paul Gerhardt's sovereign, wrote “Jesus my Redeemer lives”; and Joachim Neander, pastor in Bremen, wrote, “Thou most Highest! Guardian of mankind,” “To heaven and earth and sea and air,” “Here behold me, as I cast me.”—In German Switzerland the noble Breitinger of Zürich, who died a.d. 1645, the greatest successor of Zwingli and Bullinger, wrought successfully during a forty years' ministry, and did much to revive and quicken the church life. That the spirit of Calvin and Beza still breathed in the church of Geneva is proved by the reception given there to such men as Andreä (§ 160, 1), Labadie (§ 163, 7), and Spener (§ 159, 3).
7. Foreign Missions.—From two sides the Reformed church had outlets for its Christian love in the work of foreign missions; on the one side by the cession of the Portuguese East Indian colonies to the Netherlands in the beginning of the seventeenth century, and on the other side by the continuous formation of English colonies in North America throughout the whole century. In regard to missionary effort, the Dutch government followed in the footsteps of her Portuguese predecessors. She insisted that all natives, before getting a situation, should be baptized and have signed the Belgic Confession, and many who fulfilled these conditions remained as they had been before. But the English Puritans settled in America showed a zeal for the conversion of the Indians more worthy of the Protestant name. John Eliot, who is rightly styled the apostle of the Indians, devoted himself with unwearied and self-denying love for half a century to this task. He translated the Bible into their language, and founded seventeen Indian stations, of which during his lifetime ten were destroyed in a bloody war. Eliot's work was taken up by the Mayhew family, who for five generations wrought among the Indians. The last of the noble band, Zacharias Mayhew, died on the mission field in a.d. 1803, in his 87th year.35—Continuation, § 172, 5.
Socinianism during the first decades of the century made extraordinary progress in Poland, but then collapsed under the persecution of the Jesuits. Related to the continental [pg 067] Anabaptists were the English Baptists, who rejected infant baptism; while the Quakers, who adopted the old fanatical theory of an inner light, set baptism and the Lord's supper entirely aside. In the sect of the Labadists we find a blending of Catholic quietist mysticism and Calvinistic Augustinianism. Besides those regular sects, there were various individual enthusiasts and separatists. These were most rife in the Netherlands, where the free civil constitution afforded a place of refuge for all exiles on account of their faith. Here only was the press free enough to serve as a thoroughgoing propaganda of mysticism and theosophy. Finally the Russian sects, hitherto little studied, call for special attention.
1. The Socinians (§ 148, 4).—The most important of the Socinian congregations in Poland, for the most part small and composed almost exclusively of the nobility, was that at Racau in the Sendomir Palatinate. Founded in 1569, this city, since 1600 under James Sieninski, son of the founder, recognised Socinianism as the established religion; and an academy was formed there which soon occupied a distinguished position, and gave such reputation to the place that it could be spoken of as “the Sarmatian Athens.” But the congregation at Lublin, next in importance to that of Racau, was destroyed as early as 1627 by the mob under fanatical excitement caused by the Jesuits. The same disaster befell Racau itself eleven years later. A couple of idle schoolboys had thrown stones at a wooden crucifix standing before the city gate, and had been for this severely punished by their parents, and turned out of school. The Catholics, however, made a complaint before the senate, where the Jesuits secured a sentence that the school should be destroyed, the church taken from “the Arians,” the printing press closed, but the ministers and teachers outlawed and branded with infamy. And the Jesuits did not rest until the Reichstag at Warsaw in 1658 issued decrees of banishment against “all Arians,” and forbad the profession of “Arianism” under pain of death.—The Davidist non-adoration party of Transylvanian Unitarians (§ 148, 3) was finally overcome, and the endeavours after conformity with the Polish Socinians prevailed at the Diet of Deesch in 1638, where all Unitarian communities engaged to offer worship to Christ, and to accept the baptismal formula of Matthew xxviii. 19. And under the standard of this so called Complanatio Deesiana 106 Unitarian congregations, with a membership of 60,000 souls, exist in [pg 068] Transylvania to this day.—In Germany Socinianism had, even in the beginning of the century, a secret nursery in the University of Altdorf, belonging to the territory of the imperial city of Nuremberg. Soner, professor of medicine, had been won over to this creed by Socinians residing at Leyden, where he had studied in 1597, 1598, and now used his official position at Altdorf for, not only instilling his Unitarian doctrines by means of private philosophical conversations into the minds of his numerous students, who flocked to him from Poland, Transylvania, and Hungary, but also for securing the adhesion of several German students. Only after his death in 1612 did the Nuremberg council come to know about this propaganda. A strict investigation was then made, all Poles were expelled, and all the Socinian writings that could be discovered were burned.—The later Polish Exultants sought and found refuge in Germany, especially in Silesia, Prussia, and Brandenburg, as well as in the Reformed Palatinate, and also founded some small Unitarian congregations, which, however, after maintaining for a while a miserable existence, gradually passed out of view. They had greater success and spread more widely in the Netherlands, till the states-general of 1653, in consequence of repeated synodal protests, and on the ground of an opinion given by the University of Leyden, issued a strict edict against the Unitarians, who now gradually passed over to the ranks of the Remonstrants (§ 161, 2) and the Collegiants. Also in England, since the time of Henry VIII., antitrinitarian confessors and martyrs were to be found. Even in 1611, under James I., three of them had been consigned to the flames. The Polish Socinians took occasion from this to send the king a Racovian Catechism; but in 1614 it was, by order of parliament, burned by the hands of the hangman. The Socinians were also excluded from the benefit of the Act of Toleration of 1689, which was granted to all other dissenters (§ 155, 3). The progress of deism, however, among the upper classes (§§ 164, 3; 171, 1) did much to prevent the extreme penal laws being carried into execution.—The following are the most distinguished among the numerous learned theologians of the Augustan age of Socinian scholarship, who contributed to the extending, establishing, and vindicating of the system of their church by exegetical, dogmatic, and polemical writings: John Crell, died 1631; Jonas Schlichting, died 1661; Von Wolzogen, died 1661; and Andr. Wissowatius, a grandson of Faustus Socinus, died 1678; and with these must also be ranked the historian of Polish Socinianism, Stanislaus Lubienicki, died 1675, whose “Hist. Reformat. Polonicæ,” etc., was published at Amsterdam in 1685.
2. The Baptists of the Continent.—(1) The Dutch Baptists (§ 147, 2). Even during Menno's lifetime the Mennonites had split into the Coarse and the Fine. The Coarse, who had abandoned much of the primitive [pg 069] severity of the sect, and were by far the most numerous, were again divided during the Arminian controversy into Remonstrants and Predestinationists. The former, from their leader, were called Galenists, and from having a lamb as the symbol of their Church, Lambists. The latter were called Apostoolers from their leader, and Sunists because their churches had the figure of the sun as a symbol. The Lambists, who acknowledged no confession of faith, were most numerous. In a.d. 1800, however, a union of the two parties was effected, the Sunists adopting the doctrinal position of the Lambists.—During the time when Arminian pastors were banished from the Netherlands, three brothers Van der Kodde founded a sect of Collegiants, which repudiated the clerical office, assigned preaching and dispensation of sacraments to laymen, and baptized only adults by immersion. Their place of baptism was Rhynsburg on the Rhine, and hence they were called Rhynsburgers. Their other name was given them from their assemblies, which they styled collegia.—(2) The Moravian Baptists (§ 147, 3). The Thirty Years' War ruined the flourishing Baptist congregations in Moravia, and the reaction against all non-Catholics that followed the battle of the White Mountain near Prague, in a.d. 1620, told sorely against them. In a.d. 1622 a decree for their banishment was issued, and these quiet, inoffensive men were again homeless fugitives. Remnants of them fled into Hungary and Transylvania, only to meet new persecutions there. A letter of protection from Leopold I., a.d. 1659, secured them the right of settling in three counties around Pressburg. But soon these rigorous persecutions broke out afresh; they were beset by Jesuits seeking to convert them, and when this failed they were driven out or annihilated. At last, by a.d. 1757-1762, they were completely broken up, and most of them had joined the Roman Catholic church. A few families preserved their faith by flight into South Russia, where they settled in Wirschenka. When the Toleration Edict of Joseph II., of a.d. 1781, secured religious freedom to Protestants in Austria, several returned again to the faith of their fathers, in the hope that the toleration would be extended to them; but they were bitterly disappointed. They now betook themselves to Russia, and together with their brethren already there, settled in the Crimea, where they still constitute the colony of Hutersthal.
3. The English Baptists.—The notion that infant baptism is objectionable also found favour among the English Independents. Owing to the slight importance attached to the sacraments generally, and more particularly to baptism, in the Reformed church, especially among the Independents, the supporters of the practice of the church in regard to baptism to a large extent occupied common ground with its opponents. The separation took place only after the [pg 070] rise of the fanatical prophetic sects (§ 161, 1). We must, however, distinguish from the continental Anabaptists the English Baptists, who enjoyed the benefit of the Toleration Act of William III., of a.d. 1689, along with the other dissenters, by maintaining their Independent-Congregationalist constitution (§ 155, 3). In a.d. 1691, over the Arminian question, they split up into Particular and General, or Regular and Free Will, Baptists. The former, by far the more numerous, held by the Calvinistic doctrine of gratia particularis, while the latter rejected it. The Seventh-Day Baptists, who observed the seventh instead of the first day of the week, were founded by Bampfield in a.d. 1665.36—From England the Baptists spread to North America, in a.d. 1630, where Roger Williams (§ 162, 2), one of their first leaders, founded the little state of Rhode Island, and organized it on thoroughly Baptist-Independent principles.37—Continuation, § 170, 6.
4. The Quakers.—George Fox, born a.d. 1624, died a.d. 1691, was son of a poor Presbyterian weaver in Drayton, Leicestershire. After scant schooling he went to learn shoemaking at Nottingham, but in a.d. 1643 abandoned the trade. Harassed by spiritual conflicts, he wandered about seeking peace for his soul. Upon hearing an Independent preach on 2 Peter i. 19, he was moved loudly to contradict the preacher. “What we have to do with,” he said, “is not the word, but the Spirit by which those men of God spake and wrote.” He was seized as a disturber of public worship, but was soon after released. In a.d. 1649 he travelled the country preaching and teaching, addressing every man as “thou,” raising his hat to none, greeting none, attracting thousands by his preaching, often imprisoned, flogged, tortured, hunted like a wild beast. The core of his preaching was, not Scripture, but the Spirit, not Christ without but Christ within, not outward worship, not churches, “steeple-houses,” and bells, not doctrines and sacraments, but only the inner light, which is kindled by God in the conscience of every man, renewed and quickened by the Spirit of Christ, which suddenly lays hold upon it. The number of his followers increased from day to day. In a.d. 1652 he found, along with his friends, a kindly shelter in the house of Thomas Fell, of Smarthmore near Preston, and in his wife Margaret a motherly [pg 071] counsellor, who devoted her whole life to the cause. They called themselves “The Society of Friends.” The name Quaker was given as a term of reproach by a violent judge, whom Fox bad “quake before the word of God.” After the overthrow of the hopes of the Saints through the dissolution of the Short Parliament and Cromwell's apostasy (§ 155, 2), many of them joined the Quakers, and led them into revolutionary and fanatical excesses. Confined hitherto to the northern counties, they now spread in London and Bristol, and over all the south of England. In January, a.d. 1655, they held a fortnight's general meeting at Swannington, in Leicestershire. Crowds of apostles went over into Ireland, to North America and the West Indies, to Holland, Germany, France, and Italy, and even to Constantinople. They did not meet with great success. In Italy they encountered the Inquisition, and in North America the severest penal laws were passed against them. In a.d. 1656 James Naylor, one of their most famous leaders, celebrated at Bristol the second coming of Christ “in the Spirit,” by enacting the scene of Christ's triumphal entry into Jerusalem. But the king of the new Israel was scourged, branded on the forehead with the letter B as a blasphemer, had his tongue pierced with a redhot iron, and was then cast into prison. Many absurd extravagances of this kind, which drew down upon them frequent persecutions, as well as the failure of their foreign missionary enterprises, brought most of the Quakers to adopt more sober views. The great mother Quakeress, Margaret Fell, exercised a powerful influence in this direction. George Fox, too, out of whose hands the movement had for a long time gone, now lent his aid. Naylor himself, in a.d. 1659, issued a recantation, addressed “to all the people of the Lord,” in which he made the confession, “My judgment was turned away, and I was a captive under the power of darkness.”
5. The movement of Quakerism in the direction of sobriety and common sense was carried out to its fullest extent during the Stuart Restoration, a.d. 1660-1688. Abandoning their revolutionary tendencies through dislike to Cromwell's violence, and giving up most of their fanatical extravagances, the Quakers became models of quiet, orderly living. Robert Barclay, by his “Catechesis et Fidei Confessio,” of a.d. 1673, gave a sort of symbolic expression to their belief, and vindicated his doctrinal positions in his “Theologiæ vere Christianæ Apologia” of a.d. 1676. During this period many of them laid down their lives for their faith. On the other side of the sea they formed powerful settlements, distinguished for religious toleration and brotherly love. The chief promoter of this new departure was William Penn, a.d. 1644-1718, son of an English admiral, who, while a student at Oxford, was impressed by a Quaker's preaching, and led to attend the prayer and fellowship meetings of the Friends. In order to break his connexion [pg 072] with this party, his father sent him, in a.d. 1661, to travel in France and Italy. The frivolity of the French court failed to attract him, but for a long time he was spellbound by Amyrault's theological lectures at Saumur. On his return home, in a.d. 1664, he seemed to have completely come back to a worldly life, when once again he was arrested by a Quaker's preaching. In a.d. 1668 he formally joined the society. For a controversial tract, The Sandy Foundation Shaken, he was sent for six months to the Tower, where he composed the famous tract, No Cross, no Crown, and a treatise in his own vindication, “Innocency with her Open Face.” His father, who, shortly before his death in a.d. 1670, was reconciled to his son, left him a yearly income of £1,500, with a claim on Government for £16,000. In spite of continued persecution and oppression he continued unweariedly to promote the cause of Quakerism by speech and pen. In a.d. 1677, in company with Fox and Barclay, he made a tour through Holland and Germany. In both countries he formed many friendships, but did not succeed in establishing any societies. His hopes now turned to North America, where Fox had already wrought with success during the times of sorest persecution, a.d. 1671, 1672, In lieu of his father's claim, he obtained from Government a large tract of land on the Delaware, with the right of colonizing and organizing it under English suzerainty. Twice he went out for this purpose himself, in a.d. 1682 and 1699, and formed the Quaker state of Pennsylvania, with Philadelphia as its capital. The first principle of its constitution was universal religious toleration, even to Catholics.38
6. The Quaker Constitution, as fixed in Penn's time, was strictly democratic and congregationalist, with complete exclusion of a clerical order. At their services any man or woman, if moved by the Spirit, might pray, teach, or exhort, or if no one felt so impelled they would sit on in silence. Their meeting-houses had not the form or fittings of churches, their devotional services had neither singing nor music. They repudiated water baptism, alike of infants and adults, and recognised only baptism of the Spirit. The Lord's supper, as a symbolical memorial, is no more needed by those who are born again. [pg 073] Monthly gatherings of all independent members, quarterly meetings of deputies of a circuit, and a yearly synod of representatives of all the circuits, administered or drew up the regulations for the several societies. The Doctrinal Belief of the Quakers is completely dominated by its central dogma of the “inner light,” which is identified with reason and conscience as the common heritage of mankind. Darkened and weakened by the fall, it is requickened in us by the Spirit of the glorified Christ, and possesses us as an inner spiritual Christ, an inner Word of God. The Bible is recognised as the outer word of God, but is useful only as a means of arousing the inner word. The Calvinistic doctrine of election is decidedly rejected, and also that of vicarious satisfaction. But also the doctrines of the fall, original sin, justification by faith, as well as that of the Trinity, are very much set aside in favour of an indefinite subjective theology of feeling. The operation of the Holy Spirit in man's redemption and salvation outside of Christendom is frankly admitted. On the other hand, the ethical-practical element, as shown in works of benevolence, in the battle for religious freedom, for the abolition of slavery, etc., is brought to the front. In regard to life and manners, the Quakers have distinguished themselves in all domestic, civil, industrial, and mercantile movements by quiet, peaceful industry, strict integrity, and simple habits, so that not only did they amass great wealth, but gained the confidence and respect of those around. They refused to take oaths or to serve as soldiers, or to engage in sports, or to indulge in any kind of luxury. In social intercourse they declined to acknowledge any titles of rank, would not bow or raise the hat to any, but addressed all by the simple “thou.” Their men wore broad-brimmed hats, a plain, simple coat, without collar or buttons, fastened by hooks. Their women wore a simple gray silk dress, with like coloured bonnet, without ribbon, flower, or feathers, and a plain shawl. Wearing mourning dress was regarded as a heathenish custom.39—Continuation, § 211, 3.
7. Labadie and the Labadists.—Jean de Labadie, the scion of an ancient noble family, born a.d. 1610, was educated in the Jesuit school at Bordeaux, entered the order, and became a priest, but was released from office at his own wish in a.d. 1639, on account of delicate health. Even in the Jesuit college the principles that manifested themselves [pg 074] in his later life began to take root in him. By Scripture study he was led to adopt almost Augustinian views of sin and grace, as well as the conviction of the need of a revival of the church after the apostolic pattern. This tendency was confirmed and deepened by the influence of Spanish Quietism, which even the Jesuits had favoured to some extent. In the interest of these views he wrought laboriously for eleven years as Catholic priest in Amiens, Paris, and other places, amid the increasing hostility of the Jesuits. Their persecution, together with a growing clearness in his Augustinian convictions, led him formally to go over to the Reformed church in a.d. 1650. He now laboured for seven years as Reformed pastor at Montauban. In a.d. 1657, owing to political suspicions against him spread by the Jesuits, he withdrew from Montauban, and, after two years' labour at Orange, settled at Geneva, where his preaching and household visitations bore abundant fruit. In a.d. 1666 he accepted a call to Middelburg, in Zealand. There he was almost as successful as he had been in Geneva; but there too it began to appear that in him there burned a fire strange to the Reformed church. The French Reformed synod took great offence at his refusal to sign the Belgic Confession. It was found that at many points he was not in sympathy with the church standards, that he had written in favour of chiliasm and the Apokatastasis, that in regard to the nature and idea of the church and its need of a reformation he was not in accord with the views of the Reformed church. The synod in 1668 suspended him from office, and, as he did not confess his errors, in the following year deposed him. Labadie then saw that what he regarded as his lifework, the restoration of the apostolic church, was as little attainable within the Reformed as within the Catholic church. He therefore organized his followers into a separate denomination, and was, together with them, banished by the magistrate. The neighbouring town of Veere received them gladly, but Middelburg now persuaded the Zealand council to issue a decree banishing them from that town also. The people of Veere were ready to defy this order, but Labadie thought it better to avoid the risk of a civil war by voluntary withdrawal; and so he went, in August, a.d. 1669, with about forty followers, to Amsterdam, where he laid the foundations of an apostolic church. This new society consisted of a sort of monastic household consisting only of the regenerate. They hired a commodious house, and from thence sent out spiritual workers as missionaries, to spread the principles of the “new church” throughout the land. Within a year they numbered 60,000 souls. They dispensed the sacrament according to the Reformed rite, and preached the gospel in conventicles. The most important gain to the party was the adhesion of Anna Maria von Schürman, born at Cologne a.d. 1607 of a Reformed family, but [pg 075] settled from a.d. 1623 with her mother in Utrecht, celebrated for her unexampled attainment in languages, science, and art. When in a.d. 1670, the government, urged by the synod, forbad attendance on the Labadists' preaching, the accomplished and pious Countess-palatine Elizabeth, sister of the elector-palatine, and abbess of the rich cloister of Herford, whose intimate friend Schürman had been for forty years, gave them an asylum in the capital of her little state.
8. In Herford “the Hollanders” met with bitter opposition from the Lutheran clergy, the magistracy, and populace, and were treated by the mob with insult and scorn. They themselves also gave only too good occasion for ridicule. At a sacramental celebration, the aged Labadie and still older Schürman embraced and kissed each other and began to dance for joy. In his sermons and writings Labadie set forth the Quietist doctrines of the limitation of Christ's life and sufferings in the mortification of the flesh, the duty of silent prayer, the sinking of the soul into the depths of the Godhead, the community of goods, etc. Special offence was given by the private marriage of the three leaders, Labadie, Yvon, and Dulignon with young wealthy ladies of society, and their views of marriage among the regenerate as an institution for raising up a pure seed free from original sin and brought forth without pain. The Elector of Brandenburg, hitherto favourable, as guardian of the seminary was obliged, in answer to the complaints of the Herford magistracy, to appoint a commission of inquiry. Labadie wrote a defence, which was published in Latin, Dutch, and German, in which he endeavoured to harmonize his mystical views with the doctrines of the Reformed church. But in a.d. 1671 the magistrates obtained a mandate from the imperial court at Spires, which threatened the abbess with the ban if she continued to harbour the sectaries. In a.d. 1672 Labadie settled in Altona, where he died in a.d. 1674. His followers, numbering 160, remained here undisturbed till the war between Denmark and Sweden broke out in a.d. 1675. They then retired to the castle of Waltha in West Friesland, the property of three sisters belonging to the party. Schürman died in a.d. 1678, Dulignon in a.d. 1679, and Yvon, who now had sole charge, was obliged in a.d. 1688 to abolish the institution of the community of goods, after a trial of eighteen years, being able to pay back much less than he had received. After his death in a.d. 1707 the community gradually fell off, and after the property had gone into other hands on the death of the last of the sisters in a.d. 1725, the society finally broke up.
9. During this age various fanatical sects sprang up. In Thuringia, Stiefel and his nephew Meth caused much trouble to the Lutheran clergy in the beginning of the century by their fanatical enthusiasm, [pg 076] till convinced, after twenty years, of the errors of their ways. Drabicius, who had left the Bohemian Brethren owing to differences of belief, and then lived in Hungary as a weaver in poor circumstances, boasted in a.d. 1638 of having Divine revelations, prophesied the overthrow of the Austrian dynasty in a.d. 1657, the election of the French king as emperor, the speedy fall of the Papacy, and the final conversion of all heathens; but was put to death at Pressburg in a.d. 1671 as a traitor with cruel tortures. Even Comenius, the noble bishop of the Moravians, took the side of the prophets, and published his own and others' prophecies under the title “Lux in Tenebris.”—Jane Leade of Norfolk, influenced by the writings of BŚhme, had visions, in which the Divine Wisdom appeared to her as a virgin. She spread her Gnostic revelations in numerous tracts, founded in a.d. 1670 the Philadelphian Society in London, and died in a.d. 1704, at the age of eighty-one. The most important of her followers was John Pordage, preacher and physician, whose theological speculation closely resembles that of Jac. BŚhme. To the Reformed church belonged also Peter Poiret of Metz, pastor from a.d. 1664 in Heidelburg, and afterwards of a French congregation in the Palatine-Zweibrücken. Influenced by the writings of Bourignon and Guyon, he resigned his pastorate, and accompanied the former in his wanderings in north-west Germany till his death in 1680. At Amsterdam in a.d. 1687 he wrote his mystical work, “L'Économie Divine” in seven vols., which sets forth in the Cocceian method the mysticism and theosophy of Bourignon. He died at Rhynsburg in a.d. 1719.—From the Lutheran church proceeded Giftheil of Württemburg, Breckling of Holstein, and Kuhlmann, who went about denouncing the clergy, proclaiming fanatical views, and calling for impracticable reforms. Of much greater importance was John George Gichtel, an eccentric disciple of Jac. BŚhme, who in a.d. 1665 lost his situation as law agent in his native town of Regensburg, his property, and civil rights, and suffered imprisonment and exile from the city for his fanatical ideas. He died in needy circumstances in Amsterdam in a.d. 1710. He had revelations and visions, fought against the doctrine of justification, and denounced marriage as fornication which nullifies the spiritual marriage with the heavenly Sophia consummated in the new birth, etc. His followers called themselves Angelic Brethren, from Matthew xxii. 20, strove after angelic sinlessness by emancipation from all earthly lusts, toils, and care, regarded themselves as a priesthood after the order of Melchizedec for propitiating the Divine wrath.—Continuation, § 170.
10. Russian Sects.—A vast number of sects sprang up within the Russian church, which are all included under the general name Raskolniks or apostates. They fall into two great classes in their distinctive character, diametrically opposed the one to the other. (1) The [pg 077] Starowerzi, or Old Believers. They originated in a.d. 1652, in consequence of the liturgical reform of the learned and powerful patriarch Nikon, which called forth the violent opposition of a large body of the peasantry, who loved the old forms. Besides stubborn adhesion to the old liturgy, they rejected all modern customs and luxuries, held it sinful to cut the beard, to smoke tobacco, to drink tea and coffee, etc. The Starowerzi, numbering some ten millions, are to this day distinguished by their pure and simple lives, and are split up into three parties: (i.) Jedinowerzi, who are nearest to the orthodox church, recognise its priesthood, and are different only in their religious ceremonies and the habits of their social life; (ii.) The Starovbradzi, who do not recognise the priesthood of the orthodox church; and (iii.) the Bespopowtschini, who have no priests, but only elders, and are split up into various smaller sects. Under the peasant Philip Pustosiwät, a party of Starowerzi, called from their leader Philippius, fled during the persecution of a.d. 1700 from the government of Olonez, and settled in Polish Lithuania and East Prussia, where to the number of 1,200 souls they live to this day in villages in the district of Gumbinnen, engaged in agricultural pursuits, and observing the rites of the old Russian church.—(2) At the very opposite pole from the Starowerzi stand the Heretical Sects, which repudiate and condemn everything in the shape of external church organization, and manifest a tendency in some cases toward fanatical excess, and in other cases toward rationalistic spiritualism. As the sects showing the latter tendency did not make their appearance till the eighteenth century (§ 166, 2), we have here to do only with those of the former class. The most important of these sects is that of the Men of God, or Spiritual Christians, who trace their origin from a peasant, Danila Filipow, of the province of Wladimir. In 1645, say they, the divine Father, seated on a cloud of flame, surrounded by angels, descended from heaven on Mount Gorodin in a chariot of fire, in order to restore true Christianity in its original purity and spirituality. For this purpose he incarnated himself in Filipow's pure body. He commanded his followers, who in large numbers, mainly drawn from the peasant class, gathered around him, not to marry, and if already married to put away their wives, to abstain from all intoxicating drinks, to be present neither at marriages nor baptisms, but above all things to believe that there is no other god besides him. After some years he adopted as his son another peasant, Ivan Suslow, who was said to have been born of a woman a hundred years old, by communicating to him in his thirtieth year his own divine nature. Ivan, as a new Christ, sent out twelve apostles to spread his doctrine. The Czar Alexis put him and forty of his adherents into prison; but neither the knout nor the rack could wring from them the mysteries [pg 078] of their faith and worship. At last, on a Friday, the czar caused the new Christ to be crucified; but on the following Sunday he appeared risen again among his disciples. After some years the imprisoning, crucifying, and resurrection were repeated. Imprisoned a third time in 1672, he owed his liberation to an edict of grace on the occasion of the birth of the Prince Peter the Great. He now lived at Moscow along with the divine father Filipow, who had hitherto consulted his own safety by living in concealment in the enjoyment of the adoration of his followers unmolested for thirty years, supported by certain wealthy merchants. Filipow is said to have ascended up in the presence of many witnesses, in 1700, into the seventh and highest heaven, where he immediately seated himself on the throne as the “Lord of Hosts,” and the Christ, Suslow, also returned thither in 1716, after both had reached the hundredth year of the human existence. As Suslow's successor appeared a new Christ in Prokopi Lupkin, and, after his death, in 1732, arose Andr. Petrow. The last Christ manifestation was revealed in the person of the unfortunate Czar Peter III., dethroned by his wife Catharine II. in 1762, who, living meanwhile in secret, shall soon return, to the terrible confusion of all unbelievers. With this the historical tradition of the earlier sect of the Men of God is brought to a close, and in the Skopsen, or Eunuchs, who also venerate the Czar Peter III. as the Christ that is to come again, a new development of the sect has arisen, carrying out its principles more and more fully (§ 210, 4). Other branches of the same party, among which, as also among the Skopsen, the fanatical endeavour to mortify the flesh is carried to the most extravagant length, are the Morelschiki or Self-Flagellators, the Dumbies, who will not, even under the severest tortures, utter a sound, etc. The ever-increasing development of this sect-forming craze, which found its way into several monasteries and nunneries, led to repeated judicial investigations, the penitent being sentenced for their fault to confinement in remote convents, and the obdurate being visited with severe corporal punishments and even with death. The chief sources of information regarding the history, doctrine, and customs of the “Men of God” and the Skopsen are their own numerous spiritual songs, collected by Prof. Ivan Dobrotworski of Kasan, which were sung in their assemblies for worship with musical accompaniment and solemn dances. On these occasions their prophets and prophetesses were wont to prophesy, and a kind of sacramental supper was celebrated with bread and water. The sacraments of the Lord's supper and baptism, as administered by the orthodox church, are repudiated and scorned, the latter as displaced by the only effectual baptism of the Spirit. They have, indeed, in order to avoid persecution, been obliged to take part in the services of the orthodox national church, [pg 079] and to confess to its priests, avoiding, however, all reference to the sect.40
The mediæval scholastic philosophy had outlived itself, even in the pre-Reformation age; yet it maintained a lingering existence side by side with those new forms which the modern spirit in philosophy was preparing for itself. We hear an echo of the philosophical ferment of the sixteenth century in the Italian Dominican Campanella, and in the Englishman Bacon of Verulam we meet the pioneer of that modern philosophy which had its proper founder in Descartes. Spinoza, Locke, and Leibnitz were in succession the leaders of this philosophical development. Alongside of this philosophy, and deriving its weapons from it for attack upon theology and the church, a number of freethinkers also make their appearance. These, like their more radical disciples in the following century, regarded Scripture as delusive, and nature and reason as alone trustworthy sources of religious knowledge.
1. Philosophy.—Campanella of Stilo in Calabria entered the Dominican order, but soon lost taste for Aristotelian philosophy and scholastic theology, and gave himself to the study of Plato, the Cabbala, astrology, magic, etc. Suspected of republican tendencies, the Spanish government put him in prison in a.d. 1599. Seven times was he put upon the rack for twenty-four hours, and then confined for twenty-seven years in close confinement. Finally, in a.d. 1626, Urban VIII. had him transferred to the prison of the papal Inquisition. He was set free in [pg 080] a.d. 1629, and received a papal pension; but further persecutions by the Spaniards obliged him to fly to his protector Richelieu in France, where in a.d. 1639 he died. He composed eighty-two treatises, mostly in prison, the most complete being “Philosophia Rationalis,” in five vols. In his “Atheismus Triumphatus” he appears as an apologist of the Romish system, but so insufficiently, that many said Atheismus Triumphans was the more fitting title. His “Monarchia Messiæ” too appeared, even to the Catholics, an abortive apology for the Papacy. In his “Civitas Solis,” an imitation of the “Republic” of Plato, he proceeded upon communistic principles.—Francis Bacon of Verulam, long chancellor of England, died a.d. 1626, the great spiritual heir of his mediæval namesake (§ 103, 8), was the first successful reformer of the plan of study followed by the schoolmen. With a prophet's marvellous grasp of mind he organized the whole range of science, and gave a forecast of its future development in his “De Augmentis” and “Novum Organon.” He rigidly separated the domain of knowledge, as that of philosophy and nature, grasped only by experience, from the domain of faith, as that of theology and the church, reached only through revelation. Yet he maintained the position: Philosophia obiter libata a Deo abducit, plene hausta ad Deum reducit. He is the real author of empiricism in philosophy and the realistic methods of modern times. His public life, however, is clouded by thanklessness, want of character, and the taking of bribes. In a.d. 1621 he was convicted by his peers, deprived of his office, sentenced to imprisonment for life in the Tower, and to pay a fine of £40,000; but was pardoned by the king.42—The French Catholic Descartes started not from experience, but from self-consciousness, with his “Cogito, ergo sum” as the only absolutely certain proposition. Beginning with doubt, he rose by pure thinking to the knowledge of the true and certain in things. The imperfection of the soul thus discovered suggests an absolutely perfect Being, to whose perfection the attribute of being belongs. This is the ontological proof for the being of God.—His philosophy was zealously taken up by French Jansenists and Oratorians and the Reformed theologians of Holland, while it was bitterly opposed by such Catholics as Huetius and such Reformed theologians as Voetius.43—Spinoza, an apostate Jew in Holland, died a.d. 1677, [pg 081] gained little influence over his own generation by his profound pantheistic philosophy, which has powerfully affected later ages. A violent controversy, however, was occasioned by his “Tractatus Theologico-politicus,” in which he attacked the Christian doctrine of revelation and the authenticity of the O.T. books, especially the Pentateuch, and advocated absolute freedom of thought.44
2. John Locke, died a.d. 1704, with his sensationalism took up a position midway between Bacon's empiricism and Descartes' rationalism, on the one hand, and English deism and French materialism, on the other. His “Essay concerning Human Understanding” denies the existence of innate ideas, and seeks to show that all our notions are only products of outer or inner experience, of sensation or reflection. In this treatise, and still more distinctly in his tract, “The Reasonableness of Christianity,” intended as an apology for Christianity, and even for biblical visions and miracles, as well as for the messianic character of Christ, he openly advocated pure Pelagianism that knows nothing of sin and atonement.45—Leibnitz, a Hanoverian statesman, who died a.d. 1716, introduced the new German philosophy in its first stage. The philosophy of Leibnitz is opposed at once to the theosophy of Paracelsus and BŚhme and to the empiricism of Bacon and Locke, the pantheism of Spinoza, and the scepticism and manichæism of Bayle. It is indeed a Christian philosophy not fully developed. But inasmuch as at the same time it adopted, improved upon, and carried out the rationalism of Descartes, it also paved the way for the later theological rationalism. The foundation of his philosophy is the theory of monads wrought out in his “Theodicée” against Bayle and in his “Nouveaux Essais,” against Locke. In opposition to the atomic theory of the materialists, he regarded all phenomena in the world as eccentricities of so called monads, i.e. primary simple and indivisible substances, each of which is a miniature of the whole universe. Out of these monads that radiate out from God, the primary monad, the world is formed into a harmony once for all admired of God: the theory of pre-established harmony. This must be the best of worlds, otherwise it would not have been. In opposition to Bayle, who had argued in a manichæan fashion against God's goodness and wisdom from the existence of evil, Leibnitz seeks to show [pg 082] that this does not contradict the idea of the best of worlds, nor that of the Divine goodness and wisdom, since finity and imperfection belong to the very notion of creature, a metaphysical evil from which moral evil inevitably follows, yet not so as to destroy the pre-established harmony. Against Locke he maintains the doctrine of innate ideas, contests Clarke's theory of indeterminism, maintains the agreement of philosophy with revelation, which indeed is above but not contrary to reason, and hopes to prove his system by mathematical demonstration.46—Continuation, § 171, 10.
3. Freethinkers.—The tendency of the age to throw off all positive Christianity first showed itself openly in England as the final outcome of Levellerism (§ 162, 2). This movement has been styled naturalism, because it puts natural in place of revealed religion, and deism, because in place of the redeeming work of the triune God it admits only a general providence of the one God. On philosophic grounds the English deists affirmed the impossibility of revelation, inspiration, prophecy, and miracle, and on critical grounds rejected them from the Bible and history. The simple religious system of deism embraced God, providence, freedom of the will, virtue, and the immortality of the soul. The Christian doctrines of the Trinity, original sin, satisfaction, justification, resurrection, etc., were regarded as absurd and irrational. Deism in England spread almost exclusively among upper-class laymen; the people and clergy stood firmly to their positive beliefs. Theological controversial tracts were numerous, but their polemical force was in great measure lost by the latitudinarianism of their authors.—The principal English deists of the century were (1) Edward Herbert of Cherbury, a.d. 1581-1648, a nobleman and statesman. He reduced all religion to five points: Faith in God, the duty of reverencing Him, especially by leading an upright life, atoning for sin by genuine repentance, recompense in the life eternal.—(2) Thomas Hobbes, a.d. 1588-1679, an acute philosophical and political writer, looked on Christianity as an oriental phantom, and of value only as a support of absolute monarchy and an antidote to revolution. The state of nature is a bellum omnium contra omnes; religion is the means of establishing order and civilization. The state should decide what religion is to prevail. Every one may indeed believe what he will, but in regard to churches and worship he must submit to the state as represented by the king. His chief work is “Leviathan; or, The Matter, Form, and Power of a Commonwealth, Ecclesiastical and Civil.”—(3) Charles Blount, who died a suicide in a.d. 1693, a rabid opponent of all miracles as mere tricks of priests, wrote “Oracles of [pg 083] Reason,” “Religio Laici,” “Great is Diana of the Ephesians,” that translated Philostratus' “Life of Apollonius of Tyana.”—(4) Thomas Browne, a.d. 1635-1682, a physician, who in his “Religio Medici” sets forth a mystical supernaturalism, took up a purely deistic ground in his “Vulgar Errors,” published three years later.—Among the opponents of deism in this age the most notable are Richard Baxter (§ 162, 3) and Ralph Cudworth, a.d. 1617-1688, a latitudinarian and Platonist, who sought to prove the leading Christian doctrines by the theory of innate ideas. He wrote “Intellectual System of the Universe” in a.d. 1678. The pious Irish scientist, Robert Boyle, founded in London, in a.d. 1691, a lectureship of £40 a year for eight discourses against deistic and atheistic unbelief.47—Continuation, § 171, 1.
4. A tendency similar to that of the English deists was represented in Germany by Matthias Knutzen, who sought to found a freethinking sect. The Christian “Coran” contains only lies; reason and conscience are the true Bible; there is no God, nor hell nor heaven; priests and magistrates should be driven out of the world, etc. The senate of Jena University on investigation found that his pretension to 700 followers was a vain boast.—In France the brilliant and learned sceptic Peter Bayle, a.d. 1647-1706, was the apostle of a light-hearted unbelief. Though son of a Reformed pastor, the Jesuits got him over to the Romish church, but in a year and a half he apostatised again. He now studied the Cartesian philosophy, as Reformed professor at Sedan, vindicated Protestantism in several controversial tracts, and as refugee in Holland composed his famous “Dictionnaire Historique et Critique,” in which he avoided indeed open rejection of the facts of revelation, but did much to unsettle by his easy treatment of them.—Continuation, § 171, 3.
During the first half of the century the Roman hierarchy suffered severely at the hand of Catholic courts, while in the second half storms gathered from all sides, threatening its very existence. Portugal, France, Spain, and Italy rested not till they got the pope himself to strike the deathblow to the Jesuits, who had been his chief supporters indeed, but who had now become his masters. Soon after the German bishops threatened to free themselves and their people from Rome, and what reforms they could not effect by ecclesiastical measures the emperor undertook to effect by civil measures. Scarcely had this danger been overcome when the horrors of the French Revolution broke out, which sought, along with the Papacy, to overthrow Christianity as well. But, on the other hand, during the early decades of [pg 085] the century Catholicism had gained many victories in another way by the counter-reformation and conversions. Its foreign missions, however, begun with such promise of success, came to a sad end, and even the home missions faded away, in spite of the founding of various new orders. The Jansenist controversy in the beginning of the century entered on a new stage, the Catholic church being driven into open semi-Pelagianism, and Jansenism into fanatical excesses. The church theology sank very low, and the Catholic supporters of “Illumination” far exceeded in number those who had fallen away to it from Protestantism.
1. The Popes.—Clement XI., 1700-1721, protested in vain against the Elector Frederick III. of Brandenburg assuming the crown as King Frederick I. of Prussia, on Jan. 18th, a.d. 1701. In the Spanish wars of succession he sought to remain neutral, but force of circumstances led him to take up a position adverse to German interests. The new German emperor, Joseph I., a.d. 1705-1711, scorned to seek confirmation from the pope, and Clement consequently had the usual prayer for the emperor omitted in the church services. The relations became yet more strained, owing to a dispute about the jus primarum precum, Joseph claiming the right to revenues of vacancies as the patron. In a.d. 1707, the pope had the joy of seeing the German army driven out, not only of northern Italy, but also of Naples by the French. Again they came into direct conflict over Parma and Piacenza, Clement claiming them as a papal, the emperor claiming them as an imperial, fief. No pope since the time of Louis the Bavarian had issued the ban against a German emperor, and Clement ventured not to do so now. Refusing the invitation of Louis XIV. to go to Avignon, he was obliged either unconditionally to grant the German claims or to try the fortune of war. He chose the latter alternative. The miserable papal troops, however, were easily routed, and Clement was obliged, in a.d. 1708, to acknowledge the emperor's brother, the Grand-duke Charles, as king of Spain, and generally to yield to Joseph's very moderate demands. Clement was the author of the constitution Unigenitus, which introduced the second stage in the history of Jansenism. After the short and peaceful pontificate of Innocent XIII. a.d. 1721-1724, came Benedict XIII., a.d. 1724-1730, a pious, well-meaning, narrow-minded man, ruled by a worthless favourite, Cardinal Coscia. He wished to canonize Gregory VII., in the fond hope of thereby securing new favour to his hierarchical views, but this was [pg 086] protested against by almost all the courts. All the greater was the number of monkish saints with which he enriched the heavenly firmament. He promised to all who on their death-bed should say, “Blessed be Jesus Christ,” a 2,000 years' shortening of purgatorial pains. His successor Clement XII., a.d. 1730-1740, deprived the wretched Coscia of his offices, made him disgorge his robberies, imposed on him a severe fine and ten years' imprisonment, but afterwards resigned the management of everything to a greedy, grasping nephew. He was the first pope to condemn freemasonry, a.d. 1736. Benedict XIV., a.d. 1740-1758, one of the noblest, most pious, learned, and liberal of the popes, zealous for the faith of his church, and yet patient with those who differed, moderate and wise in his political procedure, mild and just in his government, blameless in life. He had a special dislike of the Jesuits (§ 155, 12), and jestingly he declared, if, as the curialists assert, “all law and all truth” lie concealed in the shrine of his breast, he had not been able to find the key. He wrote largely on theology and canon law, founded seminaries for the training of the clergy, had many French and English works translated into Italian, and was a liberal patron of art. To check popular excesses he tried to reduce the number of festivals, but without success.—Continuation, in Paragraphs 9, 10, 13.
2. Old and New Orders.—Among the old orders that of Clugny had amassed enormous wealth, and attempts made by its abbots at reformation led only to endless quarrels and divisions. The abbots now squandered the revenues of their cloisters at court, and these institutions were allowed to fall into disorder and decay. When, in a.d. 1790, all cloisters in France were suppressed, the city of Clugny bought the cloister and church for £4,000, and had them both pulled down.—The most important new orders were: (1) The Mechitarist Congregation, originated by Mechitar the Armenian, who, at Constantinople in a.d. 1701, founded a society for the religious and intellectual education of his countrymen; but when opposed by the Armenian patriarch, fled to the Morea and joined the United Armenians (§ 72, 2). In a.d. 1712 the pope confirmed the congregation, which, during the war with the Turks was transferred to Venice, and in a.d. 1717 settled on the island St. Lazaro. Its members spread Roman Catholic literature in Armenia and Armenian literature in the West. At a later time there was a famous Mechitarist college in Vienna, which did much by writing and publishing for the education of the Catholic youth.—(2) Frères Ignorantins, or Christian Brothers, founded in a.d. 1725 by De la Salle, canon of Rheims, for the instruction of children, wrought in the spirit of the Jesuits through France, Belgium, and North America. After the expulsion of the Jesuits from France in a.d. 1724, they took their place there till themselves driven out by the Revolution in a.d. [pg 087] 1790.49—(3) The Liguorians or Redemptorists, founded in a.d. 1732 by Liguori, an advocate, who became Bishop of Naples in a.d. 1762. He died in a.d. 1787 in his ninety-first year, was beatified by Pius VII. in a.d. 1816, and canonized by Gregory XVI. in a.d. 1839, and proclaimed doctor ecclesiæ by Pius IX. in a.d. 1871 as a zealous defender of the immaculate conception and papal infallibility. His devotional writings, which exalt Mary by superstitious tales of miracles, were extremely popular in all Catholic countries. His new order was to minister to the poor. He declared the pope's will to be God's, and called for unquestioning obedience. Only after the founder's death did it spread beyond Italy.—Continuation, § 186, 1.
3. Foreign Missions.—In the accommodation controversy (§ 156, 12), the Dominicans prevailed in a.d. 1742; but the abolishing of native customs led to a sore persecution in China, from which only a few remnants of the church were saved. The Italian Jesuit Beschi, with linguistic talents of the highest order, sought in India to make use of the native literature for mission purposes and to place alongside of it a Christian literature. Here the Capuchins opposed the Jesuits as successfully as the Dominicans had in China. These strifes and persecutions destroyed the missions.—The Jesuit state of Paraguay (§ 156, 10) was put an end to in a.d. 1750 by a compact between Portugal and Spain. The revolt of the Indians that followed, inspired and directed by the Jesuits, which kept the combined powers at bay for a whole year, was at last quelled, and the Jesuits expelled the country in a.d. 1758.—Continuation § 186, 7.
4. The Counter-Reformation (§ 153, 2).—Charles XII. of Sweden, in a.d. 1707, forced the Emperor Joseph I. to give the Protestants of Silesia the benefits of the Westphalian Peace and to restore their churches. But in Poland in a.d. 1717, the Protestants lost the right of building new churches, and in a.d. 1733 were declared disqualified for civil offices and places in the diet. In the Protestant city of Thorn the insolence of the Jesuits roused a rebellion which led to a fearful massacre in a.d. 1724. The Dissenters sought and obtained protection in Russia from a.d. 1767, and the partition of Poland between Russia, Austria, and Prussia in a.d. 1772 secured for them religious toleration. In Salzburg the archbishop, Count Firmian, attempted in a.d. 1729 a conversion of the evangelicals by force, who had, with intervals of persecution in the seventeenth century, been tolerated for forty years as quiet and inoffensive citizens. But in a.d. 1731 their elders swore on the host and consecrated salt (2 Chron. xiii. 5) to be true to their faith. [pg 088] This “covenant of salt” was interpreted as rebellion, and in spite of the intervention of the Protestant princes, all the evangelicals, in the severe winter of a.d. 1731, 1732, were driven, with inhuman cruelty, from hearth and home. About 20,000 of them found shelter in Prussian Lithuania; others emigrated to America. The pope praised highly “the noble” archbishop, who otherwise distinguished himself only as a huntsman and a drinker, and by maintaining a mistress in princely splendour.
5. In France the persecution of the Huguenots continued (§ 153, 4). The “pastors of the desert” performed their duties at the risk of their lives, and though many fell as martyrs, their places were quickly filled by others equally heroic. The first rank belongs to Anton Court, pastor at Nismes from a.d. 1715; he died at Lausanne a.d. 1760, where he had founded a theological seminary. He laboured unweariedly and successfully in gathering and organizing the scattered members of the Reformed church, and in overcoming fanaticism by imparting sound instruction. Paul Rabaut, his successor at Nismes, was from a.d. 1780 to 1785 the faithful and capable leader of the martyr church. The judicial murder of Jean Calas at Toulouse in a.d. 1762 presents a hideous example of the fanaticism of Catholic France. One of his sons had hanged himself in a fit of passion. When the report spread that it was the act of his father, in order to prevent the contemplated conversion of his son, the Dominicans canonized the suicide as a martyr to the Catholic faith, roused the mob, and got the Toulouse parliament to put the unhappy father to the torture of the wheel. The other sons were forced to abjure their faith, and the daughters were shut up in cloisters. Two years later Voltaire called attention to the atrocity, and so wrought on public opinion that on the revision of the proceedings by the Parisian parliament, the innocence of the ill-used family was clearly proved. Louis XV. paid them a sum of 30,000 livres; but the fanatical accusers, the false witnesses, and the corrupt judges were left unpunished. This incident improved the position of the Protestants, and in a.d. 1787 Louis XVI. issued the Edict of Versailles, by which not only complete religious freedom but even a legal civil existence was secured them, which was confirmed by a law of Napoleon in a.d. 1802.
6. Conversions.—Pecuniary interests and prospect of marriage with a rich heiress led to the conversion, in a.d. 1712, of Charles Alexander while in the Austrian service; but when he became Duke of Württemburg he solemnly undertook to keep things as they were, and to set up no Catholic services in the country save in his own court chapel. Of other converts Winckelmann and Stolberg are the most famous. While Winckelmann, the greatest of art critics, not a religious but an artistic ultramontane, was led in a.d. 1754 through religious indifference [pg 089] into the Romish church, the warm heart of Von Stolberg was induced, mainly by the Catholic Princess Gallitzin (§ 172, 2) and a French emigrant, Madame Montague, to escape the chill of rationalism amid the incense fumes of the Catholic services.—Continuation, § 175, 7.
7. The Second Stage of Jansenism (§ 157, 5).—Pasquier Quesnel, priest of the Oratory at Paris, suspected in 1675 of Gallicanism, because of notes in his edition of the works of Leo the Great, fled into the Netherlands, where he continued his notes on the N.T. Used and recommended by Noailles, Archbishop of Paris, and other French bishops, this “Jansenist” book was hated by the Jesuits and condemned by a brief of Clement XI. in a.d. 1708. The Jesuit confessor of Louis XIV., Le Tellier, selected 101 propositions from the book, and induced the king to urge their express condemnation by the pope. In the Constitution Unigenitus of a.d. 1713, Clement pronounced these heretical, and the king required the expulsion from parliament and church of all who refused to adopt this bull, which caused a division of the French church into Acceptants and Appellants. As many of the condemned propositions were quoted literally by Quesnel from Augustine and other Fathers, or were in exact agreement with biblical passages, Noailles and his party called for an explanation. Instead of this the pope threatened them with excommunication. In a.d. 1715 the king died, and under the Duke of Orleans' regency in a.d. 1717, four bishops, with solemn appeal to a general council, renounced the papal constitution as irreconcilable with the Catholic faith. They were soon joined by the Sorbonne and the universities of Rheims and Nantes, Archbishop Noailles, and more than twenty bishops, all the congregations of St. Maur and the Oratorians with large numbers of the secular clergy and the monks, especially of the Lazarists, Dominicans, Cistercians, and Camaldulensians. The pope, after vainly calling them to obey, thundered the ban against the Appellants in a.d. 1718. But the parliament took the matter up, and soon the aspect of affairs was completely changed. The regent's favourite, Dubois, hoping to obtain a cardinal's hat, took the side of the Acceptants and carried the duke with him, who got the parliament in 1720 to acknowledge the bull, with express reservation, however, of the Gallican liberties, and began a persecution of the Appellants. Under Louis XV. the persecution became more severe, although in many ways moderated by the influence of his former tutor, Cardinal Fleury. Noailles, who died in 1729, was obliged in 1728 to submit unconditionally, and in a.d. 1730 the parliament formally ratified the bull. Amid daily increasing oppression, many of the more faithful Jansenists, mostly of the orders of St. Maur and the Oratory, fled to the Netherlands, where they gave way more and more to fanaticism. In 1727 a young [pg 090] Jansenist priest, Francis of Paris, died with the original text of the appeal in his hands. His adherents honoured him as a saint, and numerous reports of miracles, which had been wrought at his grave in Medardus churchyard at Paris, made this a daily place of pilgrimage to thousands of fanatics. The excited enthusiasts, who fell into convulsions, and uttered prophecies about the overthrow of church and state, grew in numbers and, with that mesmeric power which fanaticism has been found in all ages to possess powerfully influenced many who had been before careless and profane. One of these was the member of parliament De Montgeron, who, from being a frivolous scoffer, suddenly, in 1732, fell into violent convulsions, and in a three-volumed work, “La Vérité des Miracles Opérés par l'Intercession de François de Paris,” 1737, came forward as a zealous apologist of the party. The government, indeed, in 1732 ordered the churchyard to be closed, but portions of earth from the grave of the saint continued to effect convulsions and miracles. Thousands of convulsionists throughout France were thrown into prison, and in 1752, Archbishop Beaumont of Paris, with many other bishops, refused the last sacrament to those who could not prove that they had accepted the constitution. The grave of “St. Francis,” however, was the grave of Jansenism, for fanatical excess contains the seeds of dissolution and every manifestation of it hastens the catastrophe. Yet remnants of the party lingered on in France till the outbreak of the Revolution, of which they had prophesied.
8. The Old Catholic Church in the Netherlands.—The first Jesuits appeared in Holland in a.d. 1592. The form of piety fostered by superior and inferior clergy in the Catholic church there, a heritage from the times of the Brethren of the Common Life (§ 112, 9), was directed to the deepening of Christian thought and feeling; and this, as well as the liberal attitude of the Archbishop of Utrecht, awakened the bitter opposition of the Jesuits. At the head of the local clergy was Sasbold Vosmeer, vicar-general of the vacant archiepiscopal see of Utrecht. Most energetically he set himself to thwart the Jesuit machinations, which aimed at abolishing the Utrecht see and putting the church of Holland under the jurisdiction of the papal nuncio at Cologne. On the ground of suspicions of secret conspiracy Vosmeer was banished. But his successors refused to be overruled or set aside by the Jesuits. Meanwhile in France the first stage of the Jansenist controversy had been passed through. The Dutch authorities had heartily welcomed the condemned book of their pious and learned countryman; but when the five propositions were denounced, they agreed in repudiating them, without, however, admitting that they had been taught in the sense objected to by Jansen. The Jesuits, therefore, charged them with the Jansenist heresy, and issued in [pg 091] a.d. 1697 an anonymous pamphlet full of lying insinuations about the origin and progress of Jansenism in Holland. Its beginning was traced back to a visit of Arnauld to Holland in a.d. 1681, and its effects were seen in the circulation of prayer-books, tracts, and sermons, urging diligent reading of Scripture, in the depreciation of the worship of Mary, of indulgences, of images of saints and relics, rosaries and scapularies (§ 188, 20), processions and fraternities, in the rigoristic strictness of the confessional, the use of the common language of the country in baptism, marriage, and extreme unction, etc. The archbishop of that time, Peter Codde, in order to isolate him, was decoyed to Rome, and there flattered with hypocritical pretensions of goodwill, while behind his back his deposition was carried out, and an apostolic vicar nominated for Utrecht in the person of his deadly foe Theodore de Cock. But the chapter refused him obedience, and the States of Holland forbad him to exercise any official function, and under threat of banishment of all Jesuits demanded the immediate return of the archbishop. Codde was now sent down with the papal blessing, but a formal decree of deposition followed him. Meanwhile the government pronounced on his rival De Cock, who avoided a trial for high treason by flight, a sentence of perpetual exile. But Codde, though persistently recognised by his chapter as the rightful archbishop, withheld on conscientious grounds from discharging official duties down to his death in a.d. 1710. Amid these disputes the Utrecht see remained vacant for thirteen years. The flock were without a chief shepherd, the inferior clergy without direction and support, the people were wrought upon by Jesuit emissaries, and the vacant pastorates were filled by the nuncio of Cologne. Thus it came about that of the 300,000 Catholics remaining after the Reformation, only a few thousands continued faithful to the national party, while the rest became bitter and extreme ultramontanes, as the Catholic church of Holland still is. Finally, in a.d. 1723, the Utrecht chapter took courage and chose a new archbishop in the person of Cornelius Steenowen. Receiving no answer to their request for papal confirmation, the chapter, after waiting a year and a half, had him and also his three successors consecrated by a French missionary bishop, Varlet, who had been driven away by the Jesuits. But in order to prevent the threatened loss of legitimate consecration for future bishops after Varlet's death in a.d. 1742, a bishop elected at Utrecht was in that same year ordained to the chapter of Haarlem, and in a.d. 1758 the newly founded bishopric of Deventer was so supplied. All these, like all subsequent elections, were duly reported to Rome, and a strictly Catholic confession from electors and elected sent up; but each time, instead of confirmation, a frightful ban was thundered forth. This, [pg 092] however, did not deter the Dutch government from formally recognising the elections.—Meanwhile the second and last act of the Jansenist tragedy had been played in France. Many of the persecuted Appellants sought refuge in Holland, and the welcome accorded them seemed to justify the long cherished suspicion of Jansenism against the people of Utrecht. They repelled these charges, however, by condemning the five propositions and the heresies of Quesnel's book; but they expressly refused the bull of Alexander VII. and its doctrine of papal infallibility. This put a stop to all attempts at reconciliation. The church of Utrecht meanwhile prospered. At a council held at Utrecht in a.d. 1765 it styled itself “The Old Roman Catholic Church of the Netherlands,” acknowledged the pope, although under his anathema, as the visible head of the Christian church, accepted the Tridentine decrees as their creed, and sent this with all the acts of council to Rome as proof of their orthodoxy. The Jesuits did all in their power to overturn the formidable impression which this at first made there; and they were successful. Clement XIII. declared the council null, and those who took part in it hardened sons of Belial. But their church at this day contains, under one archbishop and two bishops, twenty-six congregations, numbering 6,000 souls.50—Continuation, § 200, 3.
9. Suppression of the Order of Jesuits, a.d. 1773.—The Jesuits had striven with growing eagerness and success after worldly power, and instead of absolute devotion to the interests of the papacy, their chief aim was now the erection of an independent political and hierarchical dominion. Their love of rule had sustained its first check in the overthrow of the Jesuit state of Paraguay; but they had secured a great part of the world's trade (§ 156, 13), and strove successfully to control European politics. The Jansenist controversy, however, had called forth against them much popular odium; Pascal had made them ridiculous to all men of culture, the other monkish orders were hostile to them, their success in trade roused the jealousy of other traders, and their interference in politics made enemies on every hand. The Portuguese government took the first decided step. A revolt in Paraguay and an attempt on the king's life were attributed to them and the minister Pombal, whose reforms they had opposed, had them banished from Portugal in a.d. 1759, and their goods confiscated. Clement XIII., a.d. 1758-1769, chosen by the Jesuits and under their influence, protected them by a bull; but Portugal refused to let the bull be proclaimed, led the papal nuncio over the frontier, broke off all relations with Rome, and sent whole shiploads of Jesuits to the [pg 093] pope. France followed Portugal's example when the general Ricci had answered the king's demand for a reform of his orders: Sint ut sunt, aut non sint. For the enormous financial failure of the Jesuit La Valette, the whole order was made responsible, and at last, in a.d. 1764, banished from France as dangerous to the state. Spain, Naples, and Parma, too, soon seized all the Jesuits and transported them beyond the frontiers. The new papal election on the death of Clement XIII. was a life and death question with the Jesuits, but courtly influences and fears of a schism prevailed. The pious and liberal Minorite Ganganelli mounted the papal throne as Clement XIV., a.d. 1769-1774. He began with sweeping administrative reforms, forbad the reading of the bull In cœna Domini (§ 117, 3), and, pressed by the Bourbon court, issued in a.d. 1773 the bull Dominus ac Redemtor Noster suppressing the Jesuit order. The order numbered 22,600 members and the pope felt, in granting the bull, that he endangered his own life. Next year he died, not without suspicion of poisoning. All the Catholic courts, even Austria, put the decree in force. But the heretic Frederick II. tolerated the order for a long time in Silesia, and Catherine II. and Paul I. in their Polish provinces.—Pius VI., a.d. 1775-1799, in many respects the antithesis of his predecessor, was the secret friend of the exiled and imprisoned ex-Jesuits. After the outbreak of the French Revolution, a proposal was made at Rome, in a.d. 1792, for the formal restoration of the order, as a means of saving the seriously imperilled church, but it did not find sufficient encouragement.
10. Anti-hierarchical Movements in Germany and Italy.—Even before Joseph II. could carry out his reforms in ecclesiastical polity, the noble elector Maximilian Joseph III., a.d. 1745-1777, with greater moderation but complete success, effected a similar reform in the Jesuit-overrun Bavaria. Himself a strict Catholic, he asserted the supremacy of the state over a foreign hierarchy, and by reforming the churches, cloisters, and schools of his country he sought to improve their position. But under his successor, Charles Theodore, a.d. 1777-1799, everything was restored to its old condition.—Meanwhile a powerful voice was raised from the midst of the German prelates that aimed a direct blow at the hierarchical papal system. Nicholas von Hontheim, the suffragan Bishop of Treves, had under the name Justinus Febronius published, in a.d. 1763, a treatise De Statu Ecclesiæ, in which he maintained the supreme authority of general councils and the independence of bishops in opposition to the hierarchical pretensions of the popes. It was soon translated into German, French, Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian. The book made a great impression, and Clement XIII. could do nothing against the bold defender of the liberties of the church. In a.d. 1778, indeed, Pius VI. had the [pg 094] poor satisfaction of extorting a recantation from the old man of seventy-seven years, but he lived to see yet more deadly storms burst upon the church. Urged by Charles Theodore, Elector of Bavaria, the pope, in a.d. 1785, had made Munich the residence of a nuncio. The episcopal electors of Mainz, Cologne, and Treves, and the Archbishop of Salzburg, seeing their archiepiscopal rights in danger, met in congress at Ems in a.d. 1786, and there, on the basis of the Febronian proofs, claimed, in the so called Punctation of Ems, practical independence of the pope and the restoration of an independent German national Catholic church. But the German bishops found it easier to obey the distant pope than the near archbishops. So they united their opposition with that of the pope, and the undertaking of the archbishops came to nothing.—More threatening still for the existence of the hierarchy was the reign of Joseph II. in Austria. German emperor from a.d. 1765, and co-regent with his mother Maria Theresa, he began, immediately on his succession to sole rule in a.d. 1780, a radical reform of the whole ecclesiastical institutions throughout his hereditary possessions. In a.d. 1781 he issued his Edict of Toleration, by which, under various restrictions, the Protestants obtained civil rights and liberty of worship. Protestant places of worship were to have no bells or towers, were to pay stole dues to the Catholic priests, in mixed marriages the Catholic father had the right of educating all his children and the Catholic mother could claim the education at least of her daughters. By stopping all episcopal communications with the papal curia, and putting all papal bulls and ecclesiastical edicts under strict civil control, the Catholic church was emancipated from Roman influences, set under a native clergy, and made serviceable in the moral and religious training of the people, and all her institutions that did not serve this end were abolished. Of the 2,000 cloisters, 606 succumbed before this decree, and those that remained were completely sundered from all connexion with Rome. In vain the bishops and Pius VI. protested. The pope even went to Vienna in a.d. 1782; but though received with great respect, he could make nothing of the emperor. Joseph's procedure had been somewhat hasty and inconsiderate, and a reaction set in, led by interested parties, on the emperor's early death in a.d. 1790.—The Grand-duke Leopold of Tuscany, Joseph's brother, with the aid of the pious Bishop Scipio von Ricci, inclined to Jansenism, sought also in a similar way to reform the church of his land at the Synod of Pistoia, in a.d. 1786. But here too at last the hierarchy prevailed.
11. Theological Literature.—The Revocation of the Edict of Nantes, a.d. 1685, gave the deathblow to the French Reformed theology, but it also robbed Catholic theology in France of its spur and incentive. The Huguenot polemic against the papacy, and that of Jansenism against [pg 095] the semi-pelagianism of the Catholic church, were silenced; but now the most rabid naturalism, atheism, and materialism held the field and the church theology was so lethargic that it could not attempt any serious opposition. Yet even here some names are worthy of being recorded. Above all, Bernard de Montfaucon of St. Maur, the ablest antiquarian of France, besides his classical works, issued admirable editions of Athanasius, Chrysostom, Origen's “Hexapla,” and the “Collectio Nova Patrum.” E. Renaudot, a learned expert in the oriental languages, wrote several works in vindication of the “Perpétuité de la Foi cath.,” a history of the Jacobite patriarchs of Alexandria, etc., and compiled a “Collectio liturgiarum Oriental,” in two vols. Of permanent worth is the “Bibliotheca Sacra” of the Oratorian Le Long, which forms an admirable literary-historical apparatus for the Bible. The learned Jesuit Hardouin, who pronounced all Greek and Latin classics, with few exceptions, to be monkish products of the thirteenth century, and denied the existence of all pre-Tridentine general councils, edited a careful collection of Acts of Councils in twelve vols. folio in Paris, 1715, and compiled an elaborate chronology of the Old Testament. His pupil, the Jesuit Berruyer, wrote a romancing “Hist. du Peuple de Dieu,” which, though much criticised, was widely read. Incomparably more important was the Benedictine Calmet, died a.d. 1757, whose “Dictionnaire de la Bible” and “Commentaire Littéral et Critique” on the whole Bible are really most creditable for their time. And, finally, the Parisian professor of medicine, Jean Astruc, deserves to be named as the founder of the modern Pentateuch criticism, whose “Conjectures sur les Mémoires Originaux,” etc., appeared in Brussels a.d. 1753.—Within the limits of the French Revolution the noble theosophist St. Martin, died a.d. 1805, a warm admirer of BŚhme, wrote his brilliant and profound treatises.
12. In Italy the most important contributions were in the department of history. Mansi, in his collection of Acts of Councils in thirty-one vols. folio, a.d. 1759 ff., and Muratori, in his “Scriptores Rer. Italic.,” in twenty-eight vols., and “Antiquitt. Ital. Med. Ævi,” in six vols., show brilliant learning and admirable impartiality. Ugolino, in a gigantic work, “Thesaurus Antiquitt. ss.,” thirty-four folio vols., a.d. 1744 ff., gathers together all that is most important for biblical archæology. The three Assemani, uncle and two nephews, cultured Maronites in Rome, wrought in the hitherto unknown field of Syrian literature and history. The uncle, Joseph Simon, librarian at the Vatican, wrote “Bibliotheca Orientalis,” in four vols., a.d. 1719 ff., and edited Ephraem's works in six vols. The elder nephew, Stephen Evodius, edited the “Acta ss. Martyrum Orient. et Occid.,” in two vols., and the younger, Joseph Aloysius, a “Codex Liturgicus Eccles. Univ.,” in thirteen vols. Among dogmatical works the “Theologia hist.-dogm.-scholastica,” in eight vols. [pg 096] folio, Rome, 1739, of the Augustinian Berti deserves mention. Zaccaria of Venice, in some thirty vols., proved an indefatigable opponent of Febronianism, Josephinism, and such-like movements, and a careful editor of older Catholic works. The Augustinian Florez, died a.d. 1773, did for Spain what Muratori had done for Italy in making collections of ancient writers, which, with the continuations of the brethren of his order, extended to fifty folio volumes.—In Germany the greatest Catholic theologian of the century was Amort. Of his seventy treatises the most comprehensive is the “Theologia Eclectica, Moralis et Scholastica,” in four vols. folio, a.d. 1752. He conducted a conciliatory polemic against the Protestants, contested the mysticism of Maria von Agreda (§ 156, 5), and vigorously controverted superstition, miracle-mongering, and all manner of monkish extravagances. To the time of Joseph II. belongs the liberal, latitudinarian supernaturalist Jahn of Vienna, whose “Introduction to the Old Testament,” and “Biblical Antiquities” did much to raise the standard of biblical learning. For his anti-clericalism he was deprived of his professorship in a.d. 1805, and died in a.d. 1816 a canon in Vienna. To this century also belongs the greatly blessed literary labours of the accomplished mystic, Sailer, beginning at Ingolstadt in a.d. 1777, and continued at Dillingen from a.d. 1784. Deprived in a.d. 1794 of his professorship on pretence of his favouring the Illuminati, it was not till a.d. 1799 that he was allowed to resume his academic work in Ingolstadt and Landshut. By numerous theological, ascetical, and philosophical tracts, but far more powerfully by his lectures and personal intercourse, he sowed the seeds of rationalism, which bore fruit in the teachings of many Catholic universities, and produced in the hearts of many pupils a warm and deep and at the same time a gentle and conciliatory Catholicism, which heartily greeted, even in pious Protestants, the foundations of a common faith and life. Compare § 187, 1.—Continuation, § 191.
13. The German-Catholic Contribution to the Illumination.—The Catholic church of Germany was also carried away with the current of “the Illumination,” which from the middle of the century had overrun Protestant Germany. While the exorcisms and cures of Father Gassner in Regensburg were securing signal triumphs to Catholicism, though these were of so dubious a kind that the bishops, the emperor, and finally even the curia, found it necessary to check the course of the miracle worker, Weishaupt, professor of canon law in Ingolstadt, founded, in a.d. 1776, the secret society of the Illuminati, which spread its deistic ideas of culture and human perfectibility through Catholic South Germany. Though inspired by deadly hatred of the Jesuits, Weishaupt imitated their methods, and so excited the suspicion of the Bavarian government, which, in a.d. 1785, suppressed the order [pg 097] and imprisoned and banished its leaders.—Catholic theology too was affected by the rationalistic movement. But that the power of the church to curse still survived was proved in the case of the Mainz professor, Laurence Isenbiehl, who applied the passage about Immanuel, in Isaiah vii. 14, not to the mother of Christ, but to the wife of the prophet, for which he was deposed in a.d. 1774, and on account of his defective knowledge of theology was sent back for two years to the seminary. When in a.d. 1778 he published a learned treatise on the same theme, he was put in prison. The pope too condemned his exposition as pestilential, and Isenbiehl “as a good Catholic” retracted. Steinbühler, a young jurist of Salzburg, having been sentenced to death in a.d. 1781 for some contemptuous words about the Catholic ceremonies, was pardoned, but soon after died from the ill-treatment he had received. The rationalistic movement got hold more and more of the Catholic universities. In Mainz, Dr. Blau, professor of dogmatics, promulgated with impunity the doctrine that in the course of centuries the church has often made mistakes. In the Austrian universities, under the protection of the Josephine edict, a whole series of Catholic theologians ventured to make cynically free criticisms, especially in the field of church history. At Bonn University, founded in a.d. 1786 by the Elector-archbishop of Cologne, there were teachers like Hedderich, who sportively described himself on the title page of a dissertation as “jam quater Romæ damnatus,” Dereser, previously a Carmelite monk, who followed Eichhorn in his exposition of the biblical miracles, and Eulogius Schneider, who, after having made Bonn too hot for him by his theological and poetical recklessness, threw himself into the French Revolution, for two years marched through Alsace with the guillotine as one of the most dreaded monsters, and finally, in a.d. 1794, was made to lay his own head on the block.—At the Austrian universities, under the protection of the tolerant Josephine legislation, a whole series of Catholic theologians, Royko, Wolff, Dannenmayr, Michl, etc., criticised, often with cynical plainness, the proceedings and condition of the Catholic church. To this class also, in the first stage of his remarkably changeful and eventful career, belongs Ign. Aur. Fessler. From 1773, a Capuchin in various cloisters, last of all in Vienna, he brought down upon himself the bitter hatred of his order by making secret reports to the emperor about the ongoings that prevailed in these convents. He escaped their enmity by his appointment, in 1784, as professor of the oriental languages and the Old Testament at Lemberg, but was in 1787 dismissed from this office on account of various charges against his life, teaching, and poetical writings. In Silesia, in 1791, he went over to the Protestant church, joined the freemasons, held at Berlin the post of a councillor in ecclesiastical and educational affairs for the [pg 098] newly won Catholic provinces of Poland, and, after losing this position in consequence of the events of the war of 1806, found employment in Russia in 1809; first, as professor of oriental languages at St. Petersburg, and afterwards, when opposed and persecuted there also on suspicion of entertaining atheistical views, as member of a legal commission in South Russia. Meanwhile having gradually moved from a deistical to a vague mystical standpoint, he was in 1819 made superintendent and president of the evangelical consistory at Saratov, with the title of an evangelical bishop, and after the abolition of that office in 1833 he became general superintendent at St. Petersburg, where he died in 1839. His romances and tragedies as well as his theological and religious writings are now forgotten, but his “Reminiscences of his Seventy Years' Pilgrimage,” published in 1824, are still interesting, and his “History of Hungary,” in ten volumes, begun in 1812, is of permanent value.
14. The French Contribution to the Illumination.—The age of Louis XIV., with the morals of its Jesuit confessors, the lust, bigotry, and hypocrisy of its court, its dragonnades and Bastille polemic against revivals of a living Christianity among Huguenots, mystics, and Jansenists, its prophets of the Cevennes and Jansenist convulsionists, etc., called forth a spirit of freethinking to which Catholicism, Jansenism, and Protestantism appeared equally ridiculous and absurd. This movement was essentially different from English deism. The principle of the English movement was common sense, the universal moral consciousness in man, with the powerful weapon of rational criticism, maintaining the existence of an ideal and moral element in men, and holding by the more general principles of religion. French naturalism, on the other hand, was a philosophy of the esprit, that essentially French lightheartedness which laughed away everything of an ideal sort with scorn and wit. Yet there was an intimate relationship between the two. The philosophy of common sense came to France, and was there travestied into a philosophy d'esprit. The organ of this French philosophy was the “Encyclopédie” of Diderot and D'Alembert, and its most brilliant contributors, Montesquieu, Helvetius, Voltaire, and Rousseau. Montesquieu, a.d. 1689-1755, whose “Esprit des Lois” in two years passed through twenty-two editions, wrote the “Lettres Persanes,” in which with biting wit he ridiculed the political, social, and ecclesiastical condition of France. Helvetius, a.d. 1715-1771, had his book, “De l'Esprit,” burnt in a.d. 1759 by order of parliament, and was made to retract, but this only increased his influence. Voltaire, a.d. 1694-1778, although treating in his writings of philosophical and theological matters, gives only a hash of English deism spiced with frivolous wit, showing the same tendency in his historical and poetical works, giving a certain eloquence to the commonest and filthiest subjects, [pg 099] as in his “Pucelle” and “Candide.” He obtained, however, an immense influence that extended far past his own days. To the same class belongs Jean Jacques Rousseau, a.d. 1712-1778, belonging to the Roman Catholic church only as a pervert for seventeen years in the middle of his life. Of a nobler nature than Voltaire, he yet often sank into deep immorality, as he tells without reserve, but also without any hearty penitence, in his Confessions. His whole life was taken up with the conflict for his ideals of freedom, nature, human rights, and human happiness. In his “Contrat Social” of a.d. 1762, he commends a return to the natural condition of the savage as the ideal end of man's endeavour. His “Emile” of a.d. 1761 is of epoch-making importance in the history of education, and in it he eloquently sets forth his ideal of a natural education of children, while he sent all his own (natural) children to a foundling hospital.—The physician De la Mettrie, who died at the court of Frederick the Great in a.d. 1751, carried materialism to its most extreme consequences, and the German-Frenchman Baron Holbach, a.d. 1723-1789, wrote the “Système de la Nature,” which in two years passed through eighteen editions.51
15. These seeds bore fruit in the French Revolution. Voltaire's cry “Écrasez l'infame,” was directed against the church of the Inquisition, the massacre of St. Bartholomew, and the dragonnades, and Diderot had exclaimed that the world's salvation could only come when the last king had been strangled with the entrails of the last priest. The constitutional National Assembly, a.d. 1789-1791, wished to set aside, not the faith of the people, but only the hierarchy, and to save the state from a financial crisis by the goods of the church. All cloisters were suppressed and their property sold. The number of bishops was reduced to one half, all ecclesiastical offices without a pastoral sphere were abolished, the clergy elected by the people paid by the state, and liberty of belief recognised as an inalienable right of man. The legislative National Assembly, a.d. 1791, 1792, made all the clergy take an oath to the constitution on pain of deposition. The pope forbad it under the same threat. Then arose a schism. Some 40,000 priests who refused the oath mostly quitted the country. Avignon (§ 110, 4) had been incorporated in the French territory. The terrorist National Convention, a.d. 1792-1795, which brought the king to the scaffold on January 21st, a.d. 1793, and the queen on October 16th, prohibited all Christian customs, on 5th October abolished the Christian reckoning of time, and on November 7th Christianity itself, laid waste 2,000 [pg 100] churches and converted Notre Dame into a Temple de la Raison, where a ballet-dancer represented the goddess of reason. Stirred up by the fanatical baron, “Anacharsis” Cloots, “the apostle of human freedom and the personal enemy of Jesus Christ,” the Archbishop Gobel, now in his sixtieth year, came forward, proclaiming his whole past life a fraud, and owning no other religion than that of freedom. On the other hand, the noble Bishop Gregoire of Blois, the first priest to support the constitution, who voted for the abolition of royalty, but not the execution of the king, was not driven by the terrorism of the convention, of which he was a member, from a bold and open profession of Christianity, appearing in his clerical dress and unweariedly protesting against the vandalism of the Assembly. Robespierre52 himself said, “Si Dieu n'existait pas, il faudrait l'inventer,” passed in a.d. 1794 the resolution, Le peuple français reconnait l'Être suprême et l'immortalité de l'âme, and issued an order to celebrate the fête de l'Être suprême. The Directory, a.d. 1795-1799, restored indeed Christian worship, but favoured the deistical sect of the Theophilanthropists, whose high-swelling phrases soon called forth public scorn, while in a.d. 1802 the first consul banished their worship from all churches. But meanwhile, in a.d. 1798, in order to nullify the opposition of the pope, French armies had overrun Italy and proclaimed the Church States a Roman Republic. Pius VI. was taken prisoner to France, and died in a.d. 1799 at Valence under the rough treatment of the French, without having in the least compromised himself or his office.53
16. The Pseudo-Catholics.—(1) The Abrahamites or Bohemian Deists. When Joseph II. issued his edict of toleration in a.d. 1781, a sect which had hitherto kept itself secret under the mask of Catholicism made its appearance in the Bohemian province of Pardubitz. The Abrahamites were descended from the old Hussites, and professed to follow the faith of Abraham before his circumcision. Their fundamental doctrine was deistic monotheism, and of the Bible they accepted only the ten commandments and the Lord's Prayer. But as they would neither attend the Jewish synagogue nor the churches of any existing Christian sect, the emperor refused them religious toleration, drove them from their homes, and settled them in a.d. 1783 on the eastern frontiers. Many of them, in consequence of persecution, returned to the Catholic church, and even those who remained steadfast did not transmit their faith to their children.[pg 101]
17. (2) The Frankists.—Jacob Leibowicz, the son of a Jewish rabbi in Galicia, attached himself in Turkey, where he assumed the name of Frank, to the Jewish sect of the Sabbatarians, who, repudiating the Talmud, adopted the cabbalistic book Sohar as the source of their more profound religious teaching. Afterwards in Podolia, which was then still Polish, he was esteemed among his numerous adherents as a Messiah sent of God. Bitterly hated by the rabbinical Jews, and accused of indulging in vile orgies in their assemblies, many of those Soharists were thrown into prison at the instigation of Bishop Dembowski of Kaminetz. But when they turned and accused their opponents of most serious crimes against Christendom, and, at Frank's suggestion, pointing out what they alleged to be an identity between the book Sohar and the Christian doctrine of the Trinity and incarnation, made it known that they were inclined to become converts, they won the favour of the bishop. He arranged a disputation between the two parties, pronounced the Talmudists beaten, confiscated all available copies of the Talmud, dragged them through the streets tied to the tail of a horse, and then burnt them. Dembowski, however, died soon after in a.d. 1757, and the cathedral chapter expelled the Soharists from Kaminetz. They appealed to King Augustus III. and to Archbishop Lubienski of Lemberg, renewing their profession of faith in the Trinity, and promising to be subject to the pope. In a disputation with the Talmudists lasting three days they sought to prove that the Talmudists used Christian blood in their services, which afterwards led to the death of five of the Jews thus accused. By Frank's advice, who took part neither in this nor in the former disputation, but was the secret leader of the whole movement, they now formally applied for admission into the Catholic church, and their leader now entered Lemberg in great state. They actually submitted to be thus driven by him, and 1,000 of his adherents were baptized at Lemberg. Frank was baptized at Warsaw under the name of Joseph, the king himself acting as sponsor. In all Catholic journals this event was celebrated as a signal triumph for the Catholic church. But Frank among his own disciples continued to play the rôle of a miracle-working Messiah. Hence in a.d. 1760 the Inquisition stepped in. Some of his followers were imprisoned, others banished, and he himself as a heresiarch condemned to confinement for life with hard labour, from which after thirteen years he was liberated on the first partition of Poland in a.d. 1772, through the favour of Catherine II., who employed him as secret political agent. Feeling that his life was insecure in Poland, he went to Moravia, and at Brünn reorganized his numerous and attached followers into a well-knit society, by which he was revered as the incarnation of the Deity, and his beautiful daughter Eva, brought up by her noble godmother, as “the divine Emuna.” How he was permitted, [pg 102] under the protection of the Catholic church, to continue here for sixteen years, playing the rôle of a Messiah, and to amass such wealth as enabled him to purchase, in a.d. 1788, from the impoverished prince of Homburg-Birstein his castle at Offenbach, with all the privileges attached to it, is an insoluble mystery. He now called himself Baron von Frank, formed with his followers from Moravia and Poland a brilliant establishment, which outwardly adhered to the Roman Catholic church, although he very seldom attended the Catholic services. Frank died in a.d. 1791, and was buried with great pomp, but without the presence of the Catholic clergy. His daughter Eva was able to maintain the extravagant establishment of her father for twenty-six years, when the debt resting on the castle reached three million florins. At last, in a.d. 1817, the long-threatened catastrophe occurred. Eva died suddenly, and a coffin said to contain her body was actually with all decorum laid in the grave.
The oppressed condition of the orthodox church in the Ottoman empire continued unchanged. It had a more vigorous development in Russia, where its ascendency was unchallenged. Although the Russian church, from the time of its obtaining an independent patriarchate at Moscow, in a.d. 1589, was constitutionally emancipated from the mother church of Constantinople, it yet continued in close religious affinity with it. This was intensified by the adoption of the common confession, drawn up shortly before by Peter Mogilas (§ 152, 3). The patriarchal constitution in Russia, however, was but short-lived, for Peter I., in 1702, after the death of the Patriarch Hadrian, abolished the patriarchate, arrogated to himself as emperor the highest ecclesiastical office, and in a.d. 1721 constituted “the Holy Synod,” to which, under the supervision of a procurator guarding the rights of the state, he assigned the supreme direction of spiritual and ecclesiastical affairs. To these proposals the Patriarch of Constantinople gave his approval. In this reform of the church constitution Theophanes Procopowicz, Metropolitan of Novgorod, was the emperor's right [pg 103] hand.—The monophysite church of Abyssinia was again during this period the scene of Christological controversies.
1. The Russian State Church.—From the time of the liturgical reformation of the Patriarch Nikon (§ 163, 10) a new and peculiar service of song took the place of the old unison style that had previously prevailed in the Russian church. Without instrumental accompaniment, it was sustained simply by powerful male voices, and was executed, at least in the chief cities, with musical taste and charming simplicity. Among the theologians, the above-named Procopowicz, who died in a.d. 1736, occupied a prominent position. His “Handbook of Dogmatics,” without departing from the doctrines of his church, is characterized by learning, clearness of exposition, and moderation. From the middle of the century, however, especially among the superior clergy, there crept in a Protestant tendency, which indeed held quite firmly by the old theology of the œcumenical synods of the Greek Church, but set aside or laid little stress upon later doctrinal developments. Even the celebrated and widely used catechism, drawn up originally for the use of the Grand-duke Paul Petrovich, by his tutor, the learned Platón, afterwards Metropolitan of Moscow, was not quite free from this tendency. It found yet more decided expression in the dogmatic handbook of Theophylact, archimandrite of Moscow, published in a.d. 1773.—Continuation, § 206, 1.
2. Russian Sects.—To the sects of the seventeenth century (§ 163, 10) are to be added spiritualistic gnostics of the eighteenth, in which we find a blending of western ideas with the old oriental mysticism. Among those were the Malakanen, or consumers of milk, because, in spite of the orthodox prohibition, they used milk during the fasts. They rejected all anointings, even chrism and priestly consecration, and acknowledged only spiritual anointing by the doctrine of Christ. They also volatilized the idea of baptism and the Lord's supper into that of a merely spiritual cleansing and nourishing by the word of the gospel. Otherwise they led a quiet and honourable life. More important still in regard to numbers and influence were the Duchoborzen. Although belonging exclusively to the peasant class, they had a richly developed theological system of a speculative character, with a notable blending of theosophy, mysticism, Protestantism, and rationalism. They idealized the doctrine of the sacraments after the style of the Quakers, would have no special places of worship or an ordained clergy, refused to take oaths or engage in military service, and led peaceable and useful lives. They made their first appearance in Moscow in the beginning of the eighteenth century under Peter the Great, and spread through other cities of Old Russia.—Continuation, § 210, 3.
3. The Abyssinian Church (§§ 64, 1; 73, 2).—About the middle of [pg 104] the century a monk appeared, proclaiming that, besides the commonly admitted twofold birth of Christ, the eternal generation of the Father and the temporal birth of the Virgin Mary, there was a third birth through anointing with the Holy Spirit in the baptism in Jordan. He thus convulsed the whole Abyssinian church, which for centuries had been in a state of spiritual lethargy. The abuna with the majority of his church held by the old doctrine, but the new also found many adherents. The split thus occasioned has continued till the present time, and has played no unimportant part in the politico-dynastic struggles of the last ten years (§ 184, 9).
By means of the founding of the University of Halle in a.d. 1694 a fresh impulse was given to the pietist movement, and too often the whole German Church was embroiled in violent party strifes, in which both sides failed to keep the happy mean, and laid themselves open to the reproach of the adversaries. Spener died in a.d. 1705, Francke in a.d. 1727, and Breithaupt in a.d. 1732. After the loss of these leaders the Halle pietism became more and more gross, narrow, unscientific, regardless of the Church confession, frequently renouncing definite beliefs for hazy pious feeling, and attaching undue importance to pious forms of expression and methodistical modes of life. The conventionalism encouraged by it became a very Pandora's box of sectarianism and fanaticism (§ 170, 1). But it had also set up a ferment in the church and in theology which created a wholesome influence for many years. More than 6,000 theologians from all parts of Germany had down to Francke's death received their theological training in Halle, and carried the leaven of his spirit into as many churches and schools. A whole series of distinguished teachers of theology now rose in almost all the Lutheran churches of the German states, who, avoiding the onesidedness of the [pg 105] pietists and their opponents, taught and preached pure doctrine and a pious life. From Calixt they had learnt to be mild and fair towards the Reformed and Catholic churches, and by Spener they had been roused to a genuine and hearty piety. Gottfried Arnold's protest, onesided as it was, had taught them to discover, even among heretics and sectaries, partial and distorted truths; and from Calov and LŚscher they had inherited a zeal for pure doctrine. Most eminent among these were Albert Bengel, of Württemberg, who died in a.d. 1752, and Chr. Aug. Crusius of Leipzig, who died in a.d. 1775. But when the flood of “the Illumination” came rushing in upon the German Lutheran Church about the middle of the century, it overflowed even the fields sown by these noble men.
1. The Pietist Controversies after the Founding of the Halle University (§ 159, 3).—Pietism, condemned by the orthodox universities of Leipzig and Wittenberg, was protected and encouraged in Halle. The crowds of students flocking to this new seminary roused the wrath of the orthodox. The Wittenberg faculty, with Deutschmann at its head, issued a manifesto in a.d. 1695, charging Spener with no less than 264 errors in doctrine. Nor were those of Leipzig silent, Carpzov going so far as to style the mild and peace-loving Spener a procella ecclesiæ. Other leading opponents of the pietists were Schelwig of Dantzig, Mayer of Wittenberg, and Fecht of Rostock. When Spener died in a.d. 1705 his opponents gravely discussed whether he could be thought of as in glory. Fecht of Rostock denied that it could be. Among the later champions of pure doctrine the worthiest and ablest was the learned LŚscher, superintendent at Dresden, a.d. 1709-1747, who at least cannot be reproached with dead orthodoxy. His “Vollständiger Timotheus Verinus,” two vols., 1718, 1721, is by far the most important controversial work against pietism.54 Francis Buddeus of Jena for a long time sought ineffectually to bring about a reconciliation between LŚscher and the pietists of Halle. In a.d. 1710 Francke and Breithaupt obtained a valorous colleague in Joachim Lange; but even he was no match for LŚscher in controversy. Meanwhile [pg 106] pietism had more and more permeated the life of the people, and occasioned in many places violent popular tumults. In several states conventicles were forbidden; in others, e.g. Württemberg and Denmark, they were allowed.
2. The orthodox regarded the pietists as a new sect, with dangerous errors that threatened the pure doctrine of the Lutheran Church; while the pietists maintained that they held by pure Lutheran orthodoxy, and only set aside its barren formalism and dead externalism for biblical practical Christianity. The controversy gathered round the doctrines of the new birth, justification, sanctification, the church, and the millennium. (a) The new birth. The orthodox maintained that regeneration takes place in baptism (§ 141, 13), every baptized person is regenerate; but the new birth needs nursing, nourishment, and growth, and, where these are wanting, reawakening. The pietists identified awakening or conversion with regeneration, considered that it was effected in later life through the word of God, mediated by a corporeal and spiritual penitential struggle, and a consequent spiritual experience, and sealed by a sensible assurance of God's favour in the believer's blessed consciousness. This inward sealing marks the beginning, introduction into the condition of babes in Christ. They distinguished a theologia viatorum, i.e. the symbolical church doctrine, and a theologia regenitorum, which has to do with the soul's inner condition after the new birth. They have consequently been charged with maintaining that a true Christian who has arrived at the stage of spiritual manhood may and must in this life become free from sin.—(b) Justification and Sanctification. In opposition to an only too prevalent externalizing of the doctrine of justification, Spener has taught that only living faith justifies, and if genuine must be operative, though not meritorious. Only in faith proved to be living by a pious life and active Christianity, but not in faith in the external and objective promises of God's word, lies the sure guarantee of justification obtained. His opponents therefore accused him of confounding justification and sanctification, and depreciating the former in favour of the latter. And, though not by Spener, yet by many of his followers, justification was put in the background, and in a onesided manner stress was laid upon practical Christianity. Spener and Francke had expressly preached against worldly dissipation and frivolity, and condemned dancing, the theatre, card-playing, as detrimental to the progress of sanctification, and therefore sinful; while the orthodox regarded them as matters of indifference. Besides this, the pietists held the doctrine of a day of grace, assigned to each one within the limit of his earthly life (terminism).—(c) The Church and the Pastorate. Orthodoxy regarded word and sacrament and the ministry which administered them as the basis and foundation of the church; pietism [pg 107] held that the individual believers determined the character and existence of the church. In the one case the church was thought to beget, nurse, and nourish believers; in the other believers, constituted, maintained, and renewed the church, accomplishing this best by conventicles, in which living Christianity preserved itself and diffused its influence abroad. The orthodox laid great stress upon clerical ordination and the grace of office; pietists on the person and his faith. Spener had taught that only he who has experienced in his own heart the power of the gospel, i.e. he who has been born again, can be a true preacher and pastor. LŚscher maintained that the official acts of an unconverted preacher, if only he be orthodox, may be blessed as well as those of a converted man, because saving power lies not in the person of the preacher, but in the word of God which he preaches, in its purity and simplicity, and in the sacraments which he dispenses in accordance with their institution. The pietists then went so far as absolutely to deny that saving results could follow the preaching of an unconverted man. The proclamation of forgiveness by the church without the inward sealing had for them no meaning; yea, they regarded it as dangerous, because it quieted conscience and made sinners secure. Hence they keenly opposed private confession and churchly absolution. Of a special grace of office they would know nothing: the true ordination is the new birth; each regenerate one, and such a one only, is a true priest. The orthodox insisted above all on pure doctrine and the church confession; the pietists too regarded this as necessary, but not as the main thing. Spener decidedly maintained the duty of accepting the church symbols; but later pietists rejected them as man's work, and so containing errors. Among the orthodox, again, some went so far as to claim for their symbols absolute immunity from error. Spener's opposition to the compulsory use of fixed Scripture portions, prescribed forms of prayer, and the exorcism formulary occasioned the most violent contentions. On the other hand, his reintroduction of the confirmation service before the first communion, which had fallen into general desuetude, was imitated, and soon widely prevailed, even among the orthodox.—(d) Eschatology. Spener had interpreted the biblical doctrine of the 1,000 years' reign as meaning that, after the overthrow of the papacy and the conversion of heathens and Jews, a period of the most glorious and undisturbed tranquillity would dawn for the kingdom of Christ on earth as prelude to the eternal sabbath. His opponents denounced this as chiliasm and fanaticism.—(e) There was, finally, a controversy about Divine providence occasioned by the founding of Francke's orphan house at Halle. The pietists pointed to the establishment and growth of this institution as an instance of immediate divine providence; while LŚscher, by indicating the common means employed to [pg 108] secure success, reduced the whole affair to the domain of general and daily providence, without denying the value of the strong faith in God and the active love that characterized its founder, as well as the importance of the Divine blessing which rested upon the work.55
3. Theology (§ 159, 4).—The last two important representatives of the Old Orthodox School were LŚscher, who, besides his polemic against pietism, made learned contributions to biblical philology and church history; and his companion in arms, Cyprian of Gotha, who died in a.d. 1745, the ablest combatant of Arnold's “Ketzerhistorie,” and opponent of union efforts and of the papacy.—The Pietist School, more fruitful in practical than scientific theology, contributed to devotional literature many works that will never be forgotten. The learned and voluminous writer Joachim Lange, who died a.d. 1744, the most skilful controversialist among the Halle pietists, author of the “Halle Latin Grammar,” which reached its sixtieth edition in a.d. 1809, published a commentary on the whole Bible in seven folio vols. after the Cocceian method. Of importance as a historian of the Reformation was Salig of Wolfenbüttel, who died in a.d. 1738. Christian Thomasins at first attached himself to the pietists as an opponent of the rigid adherence to the letter of the orthodox, but was repudiated by them as an indifferentist. To him belongs the honour of having turned public opinion against the persecution of witches (§ 117, 4). Out of the contentions of pietists and orthodox there now rose a third school, in which Lutheran theology and learning were united with genuine piety and profound thinking, decided confessionalism with moderation and fairness. Its most distinguished representatives were Hollaz of Pomerania, died 1713 (“Examen Theologicum Acroamaticum”); Buddeus of Jena, died 1729 (“Hist. Ecclst. V.T.,” “Instit. Theol. Dogma,” “Isagoge Hist. Theol. Univ.”); J. Chr. Wolf of Homburg, died 1739 (“Biblioth. Hebr.,” “Curæ Philol. et Crit. in N.T.”); Weismann of Tübingen, died 1747 (“Hist. Ecclst.”); Carpzov of Leipzig, died a.d. 1767 as superintendent at Lübeck (“Critica s. V.T.,” “Introductio ad Libros cen. V.T.,” “Apparatus Antiquitt. s. Codicis”); J. H. Michaelis of Halle, died 1731 (“Biblia. Hebr. c. Variis Lectionibus et Brev. Annott.,” “Uberiores Annott. in Hagiograph.”); assisted in both by his learned nephew Chr. Ben. Michaelis of Halle, died 1764; J. G. Walch of Jena, died 1755 (“Einl. in die Religionsstreitigkeiten,” “Biblioth. Theol. Selecta,” “Biblioth. Patristica,” “Luther's Werke”); Chr. Meth. Pfaff of Tübingen, died 1760 (“K. G., K. Recht, Dogmatik, Moral”); L. von Mosheim of Helmstädt and GŚttingen, died 1755, the father of modern church history (“Institt. Hist. Ecclst.,” “Commentarii Rebus Christ. ante Constant. M.,” “Dissertationes,” etc.); J. Alb. Bengel of [pg 109] Stuttgart, died 1752 (“Gnomon N.T.,” a commentary on the N.T. distinguished by pregnancy of expression and profundity of thought; from his interpretation of Revelation he expected the millennium to begin in a.d. 1836); and Chr. A. Crusius of Leipzig, died 1775 (“Hypomnemata ad Theol. Propheticam.”)—A fourth theological school arose out of the application of the mathematical method of demonstration by the philosopher Chr. von Wolff of Halle, who died a.d. 1754. Wolff attached himself to the philosophical system of Leibnitz, and sought to unite philosophy and Christianity; but under the manipulation of his logico-mathematical method of proof he took all vitality out of the system, and the pre-established harmony of the world became a purely mechanical clockwork. He looked merely to the logical accuracy of Christian truths, without seeking to penetrate their inner meaning, gave formal exercise to the understanding, while the heart was left empty and cold; and thus inevitably revelation and mystery made way for a mere natural theology. Hence the charge brought against the system of tending to fatalism and atheism, not only by narrow pietists like Lange, but by able and liberal theologians like Buddeus and Crusius, was quite justifiable. By a cabinet order of Frederick William I. in a.d. 1723 Wolff was deposed, and ordered within two days, on pain of death, to quit the Prussian states. But so soon as Frederick II. ascended the throne, in a.d. 1740, he recalled the philosopher to Halle from Marburg, where he had meanwhile taught with great success.56 Sig. Jac. Baumgarten, the pious and learned professor in Halle, who died in a.d. 1757, was the first to introduce Wolff's method into theology. In respect of contents his theology occupies essentially the old orthodox ground. The ablest promoter of the system was John Carpov of Weimar, who died in a.d. 1768 (“Theol. Revelata Meth. Scientifica Adornata”). When applied to sermons, the Wolffian method led to the most extreme insipidity and absurdity.
4. Unionist Efforts.—The distinguished theologian Chr. Matt. Pfaff, chancellor of the University of Tübingen, who, without being numbered among the pietists, recognised in pietism a wholesome reaction against the barren worship of the letter which had characterized orthodoxy, regarded a union between the Lutheran and Reformed churches on their common beliefs, which in importance far exceeded the points of difference, as both practicable and desirable; and in a.d. 1720 expressed this opinion in his “Alloquium Irenicum ad Protestantes,” in which he answered the challenge of the “Corpus Evangelicorum” [pg 110] at Regensburg (§ 153, 1). His proposal, however, found little favour among Lutheran theologians. Not only Cyprian of Gotha, but even such conciliatory theologians as Weismann of Tübingen and Mosheim of Helmstädt, opposed it. But forty years later a Lutheran theologian, Heumann of GŚttingen, demonstrated that “the Reformed doctrine of the supper is true,” and proposed, in order to end the schism, that Lutherans should drop their doctrine of the supper and the Reformed their doctrine of predestination. This pamphlet, edited after the author's death by Sack of Berlin, in a.d. 1764, produced a great sensation, and called forth a multitude of replies on the Lutheran side, the best of which were those of Walch of Jena and Ernesti of Leipzig. Even within the Lutheran church, however, it found considerable favour.
5. Theories of Ecclesiastical Law.—Of necessity during the first century of the Protestant church its government was placed in the hands of the princes, who, because there were no others to do so, dispensed the jura episcopalia as præcipua membra ecclesiæ. What was allowed at first in the exigency of these times came gradually to be regarded as a legal right. Orthodox theology and the juristic system associated with it, especially that of Carpzov, justified this assumption in what is called the episcopal system. This theory firmly maintains the mediæval distinction between the spiritual and civil powers as two independent spheres ordained of God; but it installs the prince as summus episcopus, combining in his person the highest spiritual with the highest civil authority. In lands, however, where more than one confession held sway, or where a prince belonging to a different section of the church succeeded, the practical difficulties of this theory became very apparent; as, e.g., when a Reformed or Romish prince had to be regarded as summus episcopus of a Lutheran church. Driven thus to seek another basis for the claims of royal supremacy, a new theory, that of the territorial system, was devised, according to which the prince possessed highest ecclesiastical authority, not as præcipuum membrum ecclesiæ, but as sovereign ruler in the state. The headship of the church was therefore not an independent prerogative over and above that of civil government, but an inherent element in it: cujus regio, illius et religio. The historical development of the German Reformation gave support to this theory (§ 126, 6), as seen in the proceedings of the Diet of Spires in a.d. 1526, in the Augsburg and Westphalian Peace. A scientific basis was given it by Puffendorf of Heidelberg, died a.d. 1694, in alliance with Hobbes (§ 163, 3). It was further developed and applied by Christian Thomasius of Halle, died a.d. 1728, and by the famous J. H. BŚhmer in his “Jus Ecclesiasticum Protestantium.” Thomasius' connexion with the pietists and his indifference to confessions secured for the theory a favourable reception [pg 111] in that party. Spener himself indeed preferred the Calvinistic presbyterial constitution, because only in it could equality be given to all the three orders, ministerium ecclesiasticum, magistratus politicus, status œconomicus. This protest by Spener against the two systems was certainly not without influence upon the construction of a third theory, the collegial system, proposed by Pfaff of Tübingen, died a.d. 1760. According to this scheme there belonged to the sovereign as such only the headship of the church, jus circa sacra, while the jura in sacra, matters pertaining to doctrine, worship, ecclesiastical law and its administration, installation of clergy, and excommunication, as jura collegialia, belonged to the whole body of church members. The normal constitution therefore required the collective vote of all the members through their synods. But outward circumstances during the Reformation age had necessitated the relegating the discharge of these collegial rights to the princes, which in itself was not unallowable, if only the position be maintained that the prince acts ex commisso, and is under obligation to render an account to those who have commissioned him. This system, on account of its democratic character, found hearty supporters among the later rationalists. But as a matter of fact nowhere was any of the three systems consistently carried out. The constitution adopted in most of the national churches was a weak vacillation between all the three.57
6. Church Song (§ 159, 3) received, during the first half of the century, many valuable contributions. Two main groups of singers may be distinguished: (1) The pietistic school, characterized by a biblical and practical tendency. The spiritual life of believers, the work of grace in conversion, growth in holiness, the varying conditions and experiences of the religious life, were favourite themes. They were fitted, not so much for use in the public services, as for private devotion, and few comparatively have been retained in collections of church hymns. The later productions of this school sank more and more into sentimentalism and allegorical and fanciful play of words. We may distinguish among the Halle pietists an older school, a.d. 1690-1720, and a younger, a.d. 1720-1750. The former, coloured by the fervent piety of Francke, produced simple, hearty, and often profound songs. The most distinguished representatives were Freylinghausen, died a.d. 1739, Francke's son-in-law, and director of the Halle Orphanage, editor in a.d. 1717 of a hymn-book widely used among the pietists, was author of the hymns “Pure Essence, spotless Fount of Light,” “The day expires”; Chr. Fr. Richter, physician to the Orphanage, died a.d. 1711, author of thirty-three beautiful hymns, [pg 112] including “God, whom I as Love have known”; Emilia Juliana, Countess of Schwarzburg Rudolstadt, died a.d. 1706, who wrote 586 hymns, including “Who knows how near my end may be?” SchrŚder, pastor in Magdeburg, died a.d. 1728, wrote “One thing is needful: Let me deem”; Winckler, cathedral preacher of Magdeburg, died a.d. 1722, author of “Strive, when thou art called of God”; Dessler, rector of Nuremburg, died a.d. 1722, composer of “I will not let Thee go, Thou help in time of need,” “O Friend of souls, how well is me;” Gotter, died a.d. 1735, who wrote, “O Cross, we hail thy bitter reign”; Cresselius, pastor in Dusseldorf, author of “Awake, O man, and from thee shake.” The younger Halle school represents pietism in its period of decay. Its best representatives are J. J. Rambach, professor at Giessen, died a.d. 1735, who wrote “I am baptized into thy name”; Allendorf, court preacher at CŚthen, died a.d. 1773, editor of a collection of poetic renderings from the Canticles.—(2) The poets of the orthodox party, although opposed to the pietists, are all more or less touched by the fervent piety of Spener. Neumeister, pastor at Hamburg, died a.d. 1756, was an orthodox hymn-writer of thoroughly conservative tendencies, zealously opposing the onesidedness of pietism, with a strong, ardent faith in the orthodox creed, but without much significance as a poet. Schmolck, pastor at Schweidnitz, died a.d. 1737, wrote over 1,000 hymns, including “Blessed Jesus, here we stand,” “Hosanna to the Son of David! Raise,” “Welcome, thou Victor in the strife.” Sol. Franck, secretary to the consistory at Weimar, died a.d. 1725, wrote over 300 hymns, including “Rest of the weary, thou thyself art resting now.” The mediating party between pietism and orthodoxy, represented by Bengel and Crusius in theology, is represented among hymn-writers by J. Andr. Rothe, died a.d. 1758, and by Mentzer, died a.d. 1784, composer of “Oh, would I had a thousand tongues!” In a.d. 1750 J. Jac. von Moser collected a list of 50,000 spiritual songs printed in the German language.—Continuation, § 171, 1.
7. Sacred Music (§ 159, 5).—Decadence of musical taste accompanied the lowering of the poetic standard, and pietists went even further than the orthodox in their imitation and adaptation of operatic airs. Freylinghausen, not only himself composed many such melodies, but made a collection from various sources in a.d. 1704, retaining some of the more popular of the older tunes.—There now arose, amid all this depravation of taste, a noble musician, who, like the good householder, could bring out of his treasure things new and old. J. Seb. Bach, the most perfect organist who ever lived, was musical director of the School of St. Thomas, Leipzig, and died a.d. 1750. He turned enthusiastically to the old chorale, which no one had ever understood and appreciated as he did. He harmonized the old chorales for the organ, made them the basis for elaborate organ studies, gave expression to his profoundest [pg 113] feelings in his musical compositions and in his recitatives, duets, and airs, reproduced at the sacred concerts many fine old chorales wedded to most appropriate Scripture passages. He is for all times the unrivalled master in fugue, harmony, and modulation. In his passion music we have expression given to the profoundest ideas of German Protestantism in the noblest music. After Bach comes a master in oratorio music hitherto unapproached, G. Fr. Handel of Halle, who, from a.d. 1710 till his death in a.d. 1759, lived mostly in England. For twenty-five years he wrought for the opera-house, and only in his later years gave himself to the composing of oratorios. His operas are forgotten, but his oratorios will endure to the end of time. His most perfect work is the “Messiah,” which Herder describes as a Christian epic in music. Of his other great compositions, “Samson,” “Judas Maccabæus,” and “Jephtha” may be mentioned.58
8. The Christian Life and Devotional Literature.—Pietism led to a powerful revival of religious life among the people, which it sustained by zealous preaching and the publication of devotional works. A similar activity displayed itself among the orthodox. Francke began his charitable labours with seven florins; but with undaunted faith he started his Orphanage, writing over its door the words of Isaiah xl. 31. In faith and benevolence Woltersdorff was a worthy successor of Francke; and Baron von Canstein applied his whole means to the founding of the Bible Institute of Halle. Missions too were now prosecuted with a zeal and success which witnessed to the new life that had arisen in the Lutheran church.—A remarkable manifestation of the pietistic spirit of this age is seen in The Praying Children in Silesia, a.d. 1707. Children of four years old and upward gathered in open fields for singing and prayer, and called for the restoration of churches taken away by the Catholics. The movement spread over the whole land. In vain was it denounced from the pulpits and forbidden by the authorities. Opposition only excited more and more the zeal of the children. At last the churches were opened for their services. The excitement then gradually subsided. It was, however, long a subject of discussion between the pietists and the orthodox; the latter denouncing it as the work of the devil, the former regarding it as a wonderful awakening of God's grace.—Best remembered of the many devotional writers of this period are Bogatsky of Halle, died a.d. 1774, whose “Golden Treasury” is still highly esteemed;59 and Von Moser, died a.d. 1785, who lived a noble and exemplary life at Stuttgart amid much sore persecution. The great need of simple explanation [pg 114] of Scripture appears from the great sale of such popular commentaries as those of Pfaff at Tübingen, 1730, Starke at Leipzig, 1741, and the Halle Bible of S. J. Baumgarten, 1748.
9. Missions to the Heathen.—The quickening of religious life by pietism bore fruit in new missionary activity. Frederick IV. of Denmark founded in his East Indian possessions the Tranquebar mission in a.d. 1706, under Ziegenbalg and Plutschau. Ziegenbalg, who translated the New Testament into Tamil, died in a.d. 1719. From the Danish possessions this mission carried its work over into the English Indian territories. Able and zealous workers were sent out from the Halle Institute, of whom the greatest was Chr. Fr. Schwartz, who died in a.d. 1798, after nearly fifty years of noble service in the mission field. In the last quarter of the century, however, under the influence of rationalism, zeal for missions declined, the Halle society broke up, and the English were allowed to reap the harvest sown by the Lutherans. The Halle professor Callenberg founded in a.d. 1728 a society for the conversion of the Jews, in the interests of which Stephen Schultz travelled over Europe, Asia, and Africa, preaching the Cross among the Jews. Christianity had been introduced among the Eskimos in Greenland in the eleventh century (§ 93, 5), but the Scandinavian colony there had been forgotten, and no trace of the religion which it had taught any longer remained. This reproach to Christianity lay sore on the heart of Hans Egede, a Norwegian pastor, and he found no rest till, supported by a Danish-Norwegian trading house, he sailed with his family in a.d. 1721 for these frozen and inhospitable shores. Amid almost inconceivable hardships, and with at first but little success, he continued to labour unweariedly, and even after the trading company abandoned the field he remained. In a.d. 1733 he had the unexpected joy of welcoming three Moravian missionaries, Christian David and the brothers Stach. His joy was too soon dashed by the spiritual pride of the new arrivals, who insisted on modelling everything after their own Moravian principles, and separated themselves from the noble Egede, when he refused to yield, as an unspiritual and unconverted man. Egede, on the other hand, though deeply offended at their confounding justification and sanctification, their contempt of pure doctrine, and their unscriptural views and mode of speech, was ready to attribute all this to their defective theological training. He rewarded their unkindness, when they were stricken down in sore sickness, with unwearied, loving care. In a.d. 1736 he returned to Denmark, leaving his son Paul to carry on his work, and continued director of the Greenland Mission Seminary in Copenhagen till his death in a.d. 1758.60—Continuation, § 171, 5.
The highly gifted Count Zinzendorf, inspired even as a boy, out of fervent love to the Saviour, with the idea of gathering together the lovers of Jesus, took occasion of the visit of some Moravian Exultants to his estate to realize his cherished project. On the Hutberg he dropped the mustard seed of the dream of his youth into fertile soil, where, under his fervent care, it soon grew into a stately tree, whose branches spread over all European lands, and thence through all parts of the habitable globe. The society which he founded was called “The Society of the United Brethren.” The fact that this society was not overwhelmed by the extravagances to which for a time it gave way, that its fraternising with the fanatics, the extravagant talk in which its members indulged about a special covenant with the Saviour, and their not over-modest claims to a peculiar rank in the kingdom of God, did not lead to its utter overthrow in the abyss of fanaticism, and that on the slippery paths of its mystical marriage theory it was able to keep its feet, presents a phenomenon, which stands alone in church history, and more than anything else proves how deeply rooted founder and followers were in the saving truths of the gospel. The count himself laid aside many of his extravagances, and what still remained was abandoned by his sensible and prudent successor Spangenberg, so far as it was not necessarily involved in the fundamental idea of a special covenant with the Saviour. The special service rendered by the society was the protest which it raised against the generally prevailing apostasy. During this period of declension it saved the faith of many [pg 116] pious souls, affording them a welcome refuge, with rich spiritual nourishment and nurture. With the reawakening of the religious life in the nineteenth century, however, its adherents lost ground in Europe more and more, by maintaining their old onesidedness in life and doctrine, their depreciatory estimate of theological science, and the quarrelsome spirit which they generally manifested. But in one province, that of missions to the heathen, their energy and success have never yet been equalled. Their thorough and well-organized system of education also deserves particular mention. At present the Society of the Brethren numbers half a million, distributed among 100 settlements or thereabout.
1. The Founder of the Moravian Brotherhood, Nic. Ludwig Count von Zinzendorf and Pottendorf, was born in Dresden in a.d. 1700. Spener was one of his sponsors at baptism. His father dying early, and his mother marrying a second time, the boy, richly endowed with gifts of head and heart, was brought up by his godly pietistic grandmother, the Baroness von Gersdorf. There in his earliest youth he learned to seek his happiness in the closest personal fellowship with the Lord, and the tendency of his whole future life to yield to the impulses of pious feeling already began to assert itself. In his tenth year he entered the Halle Institute under Francke, where the pietistic idea of the need of the ecclesiolæ in ecclesia took firm possession of his heart. Even in his fifteenth year he sought its realization by founding among his fellow students “The Order of the Grain of Mustard Seed” (Matt. xiii. 31). After completing his school course, his uncle and guardian, in order to put an end to his pietistic extravagances, sent him to study law at the orthodox University of Wittenberg. Here he had at first to suffer a sort of martyrdom as a rigid pietist swimming against the orthodox current. His residence at Wittenberg, however, was beneficial to him in freeing him unconsciously of the Halle pietism, which had restrained his spiritual development. He did indeed firmly maintain the fundamental idea of pietism, ecclesiolæ in ecclesia, but in his mind it gained a wider significance than pietism had given it. His endeavours to secure a personal conference, and where possible a union, between the Halle and Wittenberg leaders were unsuccessful. In a.d. 1719 he left Wittenberg and travelled for two years, visiting the most distinguished representatives of all confessions and sects. This too fostered his idea of a grand gathering of all who love the Lord Jesus. On his return home, [pg 117] in a.d. 1721, at the wish of his relatives he entered the service of the Saxon government. But a religious genius like Zinzendorf could find no satisfaction in such employment. And soon an opportunity presented itself for carrying out the plan to which his thoughts and longings were directed.62
2. The Founding of the Brotherhood, a.d. 1722-1727. The Schmalcald, and still more the Thirty Years' War, had brought frightful suffering and persecution upon the Bohemian and Moravian Brethren. Many of them sought refuge in Poland and Prussia. One of the refugees was the famous educationist J. Amos Comenius, who died in a.d. 1671, after having been bishop of the Moravians at Lissa in Posen from 1648. Those who remained behind were, even after the Peace of Westphalia, subjected to the cruellest oppression! Only secretly in their houses and at the risk of their lives could they worship God according to the faith of their fathers; and they were obliged publicly to profess their adherence to the Romish church. Thus gradually the light of the gospel was extinguished in the homes of their descendants, and only a tradition, becoming ever more and more faint, remained as a memory of their ancestral faith. A Moravian carpenter, Christian David, born and reared in the Romish church, but converted by evangelical preaching, succeeded in the beginning of the eighteenth century in fanning into a flame again in some families the light that had been quenched. This little band of believers, under David's leading, went forth in a.d. 1722 and sought refuge on Zinzendorf's estate in Lusatia. The count was then absent, but the steward, with the hearty concurrence of the count's grandmother, gave them the Hutberg at Berthelsdorf as a settlement. With the words of Psalm lxxxiv. 4 on his lips, Christian David struck the axe into the tree for building the first house. Soon the little town of Herrnhut had arisen, as the centre of that Christian society which Zinzendorf now sought with all his heart and strength to develop and promote. Gradually other Moravians dropped in, but a yet greater number from far and near streamed in, of all sorts of religious revivalists, pietists, separatists, followers of Schwenckfeld, etc. Zinzendorf had no thought of separation from the Lutheran church. The settlers were therefore put under the pastoral care of Rothe, the worthy pastor of Berthelsdorf (§ 166, 6). To organize such a mixed multitude was no easy task. Only Zinzendorf's glorious enthusiasm for the idea of a congregation of saints, his eminent organizing talents, the wonderful elasticity and tenacity of his will, the extraordinary prudence, circumspection, and wisdom of his management, made it possible to cement the incongruous elements and avoid an open breach. [pg 118] The Moravians insisted upon restoring their old constitution and discipline, and of the others, each wished to have prominence given to whatever he thought specially important. Only on one point were they all agreed, the duty of refusing to conform to the Lutheran church and its pastor Rothe. The count, therefore, felt obliged to form a new and separatist society. Personally he had no special liking for the old Moravian constitution; but the lot decided in its favour, while the idea of continuing a pre-Reformation martyr church was not without a certain charm. Thus Zinzendorf drew up a constitution with old Moravian forms and names, on the basis of which the colony was established, August 13th, a.d. 1727, under the name of the United Brotherhood.
3. The Development of the Brotherhood down to Zinzendorf's Death, a.d. 1727-1760.—With great energy the new society proceeded to found settlements in Germany, Holland, England, Ireland, Denmark, Norway, and North America, as well as among German residents in other lands. In a.d. 1734, Zinzendorf submitted to examination at Tübingen as candidate for license, and in a.d. 1737 received episcopal consecration from the Berlin court preacher, Jablonsky, who was at the same time bishop of the Moravian Brethren, which the same prelate had two years previously granted to Dr. Nitschmann, another member of the society. The efforts of the Brethren to spread their cause now attracted attention. The Saxon government in a.d. 1736 sent to Herrnhut a commission, of which LŚscher was a member. But in a.d. 1736, before it submitted its report, which on the whole was favourable, Zinzendorf quitted the country, probably by the elector's command at the instigation of the Austrian government, which objected to the harbouring of so many Bohemian and Moravian emigrants. Like all those at this time persecuted on account of religion he took refuge in Wetterau (§ 170, 2). With his little family of pilgrims he settled at Ronneburg near Büdingen, founded the prosperous churches of Marienborn and Herrnhaag, and travelled extensively in Europe and America. This period of exile was the period when the society was most successful in spreading outwardly, but it was also the period when it suffered most from troubles and dissensions within. It was bitterly attacked by Lutheran theologians, and much more venomously by apostates from its own fold. The Brethren at this time afforded only too much ground for misunderstanding and reproach. To this period belongs the famous fiction of a special covenant, the Pandora-box of all other absurdities; the development of the count's own theological views and peculiar form of expression in his numerous works; the composition and introduction of unsavoury spiritual songs, with their silly conceits and many blasphemous and even obscene pictures and analogies; the market-crier [pg 119] laudations of their church, the not always pure methods of propaganda, the introduction of a marriage discipline fitted to break down all modest restraints; and, finally, the so-called Niedlichkeiten, or boisterous festivals. Even the pietists opposed these antinomian excesses. Tersteegen, too (§ 169, 1), whose mystic tendency inclined him strongly toward pietist views, reproached the Herrnhuters with frivolity. This polemic, disagreeable as it was, exercised a wholesome influence upon the society. The count became more guarded in his language, and more prudent in his behaviour, while he set aside the most objectionable excrescences of doctrine and practice that had begun to show themselves in the community. At last, in a.d. 1747, the Saxon government repeated the edict of banishment so far as the person of the founder was concerned, and when, two years later, the society expressly accepted the Augsburg Confession, it was formally recognised in Saxony. In this same year, a.d. 1749, an English act of parliament recognised it as a church with a pure episcopal succession on equal terms with the Anglican episcopal church.—Zinzendorf continued down to his death to direct the affairs of this church, which hung upon him with childlike affection, reflecting his personality, not only in its excellences, but also in all its extravagances. He died in a.d. 1760 in the full enjoyment of that blessedness which his fervent love for the Saviour had brought him.
4. Zinzendorf's Plan and Work.—While Zinzendorf received his first impulse from pietism, he soon perceived its onesidedness and narrowness. He would have no conventicle, but one organized community; no ideal invisible, but a real visible church; no narrow methodism, but a rich, free administration of the Christian spirit. He did not, in the first instance, aim at the conversion of the world, nor even at the reformation of the church, but at gathering and preserving those belonging to the Saviour. He hoped, however, to erect a reservoir in which he might collect every little brooklet of living water, from which he might again water the whole world. And when he succeeded in organizing a community, he was quite convinced that it was the Philadelphia of the Apocalypse (iii. 7 ff.), that it introduced “the Philadelphian period” of church history, of which all prophets and apostles had prophesied. His plan had originally reference to all Christendom, and he even took a step toward realizing this universal idea. In order to build a bridge between the Catholic church and his own community, he issued, in a.d. 1727, a Christo-Catholic hymn-book and prayer-book, and had even sketched out a letter to the pope to accompany a copy of his book. He also attempted, by a letter to the patriarchs and then to Elizabeth, empress of Russia, to interest the Greek church in his scheme, dwelling upon the Greek extraction of the church of the Moravian Brethren (§ 79, 2). His gathering of [pg 120] members, however, was practically limited to the Protestant churches. All confessions and sects afforded him contingents. He was himself heartily attached to the distinctive doctrines of the Lutheran church. But in a society whose distinctive characteristic it was to be the gathering point for the pious of all nationalities, doctrine and confession could not be the uniting bond. It could be only a fellowship of love and not of creed, and the bond a community of loving sentiment and loving deeds. The inmost principle of Lutheranism, reconciliation by the blood of Christ, was saved, indeed was made the characteristic and vital doctrine, the one point of union between Moravians, Lutherans, and Reformed. Over the three parties stood the count himself as ordinarius; but this gave an external and not a confessional unity. The subsequent acceptance of the Augsburg Confession, in a.d. 1749, was a political act, so as to receive a civil status, and had otherwise no influence. Instead then of the confession, Zinzendorf made the constitution the bond of union. Its forms were borrowed from the old Moravian church order, but dominated and inspired by Zinzendorf's own spirit. The old Moravian constitution was episcopal and clerical, and proceeded from the idea of the church; while the new constitution of Herrnhut was essentially presbyterial, and proceeded from the idea of the community, and that as a communion of saints. The Herrnhut bishops were only titular bishops; they had no diocese, no jurisdiction, no power of excommunication. All these prerogatives belonged to the united eldership, in which the lay element was distinctly predominant. Herrnhut had no pastors, but only preaching brothers; the pastoral care devolved upon the elders and their assistants. But beside these half-Lutheran and pseudo-Moravian peculiarities, there was also a Donatist element at the basis of the constitution. This lay in the fundamental idea of absolutely true and pure children of God, and reached full expression in the concluding of a special covenant with the Saviour at London on Sept. 16th, a.d. 1741. Leonard Dober for some years administered the office of an elder-general. But at the London synod it was declared that he had not the requisite gifts for that office. Dober now wished to resign. While in confusion as to whom they could appoint, it flashed into the minds of all to appoint the Saviour Himself. “Our feeling and heart conviction was, that He made a special covenant with His little flock, taking us as His peculiar treasure, watching over us in a special way, personally interesting Himself in every member of our community, and doing that for us perfectly which our previous elders could only do imperfectly.”
5. Among the numerous extravagances which Zinzendorf countenanced for a time, the following may be mentioned. (1) The notion of the motherhood of the Holy Spirit. Zinzendorf described the holy [pg 121] Trinity as “man, woman, and child.” The Spirit is the mother in three respects: the eternal generation of the Son of God, the conception of the Man Jesus, and the second birth of believers. (2) The notion of the fatherhood of Jesus Christ (Isa. ix. 6). Creation is ascribed solely to the Son, hence Christ is our special, direct Father. The Father of our Lord Jesus Christ is only, “in the language of men, our father-in-law or grandfather.” (3) In reference to our Lord's life on earth, Zinzendorf delighted in using terms of contempt, in order to emphasize the depths of His humiliation. (4) In like manner he uses reproachful terms in speaking of the style of the sacred Scriptures, and the inspired community prefers a living Bible. (5) The theory and practice of mystical marriage, according to Ephesians v. 32. The community and each member of it are spiritual brides of Christ, and the marriage relation and begetting of children were set forth and spiritualized in a singularly indelicate manner.
6. Zinzendorf's greatness lay in the fervency of his love of the Saviour, and in the yearning desire to gather under the shadow of the cross all who loved the Lord. His weakness consisted not so much in his manifested extravagances, as in his idea that he had been called to found a society. To the realizing of this idea he gave his life, talents, heart, and means. The advantages of rank and culture he also gave to this one task. He was personally convinced of his Divine call, and as he did not recognise the authority of the written word, but only subjective impressions, it is easily seen how he would drift into absurdities and inconsistencies. The end contemplated seemed to him supremely important, so that to realize it he did not scruple to depart from strict truthfulness.—Zinzendorf's writings, over one hundred in number, are characterized by originality, brilliancy, and peculiar forms of expression. Of his 2,000 hymns, mostly improvised for public services, 700 of the best were revised and published by Knapp. Two are still found in most collections, and are more or less reproduced in our English hymns, “Jesus still lead on,” and “Jesus, Thy blood and righteousness.”
7. The Brotherhood under Spangenberg's Administration.—For its present form the Brotherhood is indebted to its wise and sensible bishop, Aug. Gottl. Spangenberg, who died a.d. 1792. Born in 1704, he became personally acquainted with Zinzendorf in 1727, after he had completed his studies at Jena under Buddæus, and continued ever after on terms of close intimacy with him and his community. Through the good offices of G. A. Francke, son and successor of A. H. Francke, he was called in Sept., 1732, to the office of an assistantship in the theological faculty at Halle, and appointed school inspector of the Orphanage; but very soon offence was taken at the brotherly fellowship which he had, not only with the society of Herrnhut, but also [pg 122] with other separatists. The misunderstanding that thus arose led in April, 1733, to his deprivation under a royal cabinet order, and his expulsion by military power from Halle. He now formally joined the communion of the Brethren. The first half of his signally blessed ministry of sixty years among the Moravians was chiefly devoted to foreign mission work, both in their colonies abroad and in their stations in heathen lands. In Holland in 1734, in England and Denmark in 1735, he obtained official permission for the founding of Moravian colonies in Surinam, in the American state of Georgia, and in Santa Cruz, the forming and management of which he himself undertook, besides directing the mission work in these places. Returning from America in 1762, he won, after Zinzendorf's death, so complete an ascendency in the church in every respect, that he may well be regarded as its second founder. At the Synod of Marienborn, in a.d. 1764, the constitution was revised and perfected. Zinzendorf's monarchical prerogative was surrendered to the eldership, and Spangenberg prudently secured the withdrawal of all excrescences and extravagances. But the central idea of a special covenant was not touched, and Sept. 16th is still held as a grand pentecost festival. In the fifth section of the statutes of the United Brethren at Gnaden, 1819, it distinguishes itself from all the churches as a “society of true children of God; as a family of God, with Jesus as its head.” In the fourth section of the “Historical Account of the Constitution of the United Brethren at Gnaden, 1823,” the society is described as “a company of living members of the invisible body of Jesus Christ”; and in its litany for Easter morning, it adds as a fourth particular to the article of the creed: “I believe that our brothers N. N., and our sisters N. N. have joined the church above, and have entered into the joy of the Lord.” The synod of a.d. 1848 modified this article, and generally the society's distinctive views are not made so prominent. This liberal tendency had dogmatic expression given to it in Spangenberg's “Idea Fidei Fratrum.” Only a few new settlements have been formed since Zinzendorf's death, and none of any importance; while the hitherto flourishing Moravian settlements in Wetterau were destroyed and their members banished, in a.d. 1750, by the reigning prince, Count von Isenburg-Büdingen, on account of their refusing to take the oath of allegiance.—After the first attempt to establish societies among the German emigrants in Livonia and Esthonia in a.d. 1729-1743 had ended in the expulsion of the Herrnhuters, these regions proved in the second half of the century a more fruitful field than any other. They secured there a relation to the national church such as they never attained unto elsewhere. They had in these parts formally organized a church within the church, whose members, mostly peasants, felt convinced that they [pg 123] had been called by the Lord's own voice as His chosen little flock, a proceeding which caused infinite trouble, especially in Livonia, to the faithful pastors, who perceived the deadly mischief that was being wrought, and witnessed against them from God's word. This protest was too powerful and convincing to be disregarded, and now, not only too late, but also in too half-hearted a way, Herrnhut began, in a.d. 1857, to turn back, so as to save its Livonian institute by inward regeneration from certain overthrow.
8. The doctrinal peculiarities of the Brotherhood cannot be quite correctly described as un-Lutheran, or anti-Lutheran. Bengel smartly characterized them in a single phrase: “They plucked up the stock of sound doctrine, stripped oft what was most essential and vital, and retained the half of it,” which not only then, but even still retains its truth and worth. Salvation is regarded as proceeding purely from the Son, the God-Man, so that the relation of the Father and of the Holy Spirit to redemption is scarcely even nominal; and the redemption of the God-Man again is viewed one-sidedly as consisting only in His sufferings and death, while the other side, that is grounded on His life and resurrection, is either carefully passed over, or its fruit is represented as borrowed from the atoning death. Thus not only justification, but sanctification is derived exclusively from the death of Christ, and this, not so much as a forensic substitutionary satisfaction, although that is not expressly denied, but rather as a Divine love-sacrifice which awakens an answering love in us. The whole of redemption is viewed as issuing from Christ's blood and wounds; and since from this mode of viewing the subject God's grace and love are made prominent rather than His righteousness, we hear almost exclusively of the gospel, and little or nothing of the law. All preaching and teaching were avowedly directed to the awakening of pious feelings of love to God, and thus tended to foster a kind of religious sentimentalism.
9. The peculiarities of worship among the Brethren were also directed to the excitement of pious feeling; their sensuously sweet sacred music, their church hymns, overcharged with emotion, their richly developed liturgies, their restoration of the agape with tea, biscuit, and chorale-singing, the fraternal kiss at communion, in their earlier days also washing of the feet, etc. The daily watchword from the O.T. and doctrinal texts from the N.T. were regarded as oracles, and were intended to give a special impress to the religious feelings of the day. As early as a.d. 1727 they had a hymn-book containing 972 hymns. Most of these were compositions of their own, a true reflection of their religious sentiments at that period. It also contained Bohemian and Moravian hymns, translated by Mich. Weiss, and also many old favourites of the evangelical church, often sadly [pg 124] mutilated. By a.d. 1749 it had received twelve appendices and four supplements. In these appendices, especially in the twelfth, the one-sided tendency to give prominence to feeling was carried to the most absurd lengths of caricature in the use of offensive and silly terms of endearment as applied to the Saviour. Zinzendorf admitted the defects of this production, and had it suppressed in 1751, and in London prepared a new, expurgated edition of the hymn-book. Under Spangenberg's presidency Christian Gregor issued, in a.d. 1778, a hymn-book, containing 542 from Zinzendorf's book and 308 of his own pious rhymes. He also published a chorale book in a.d. 1784. Among their sacred poets Zinzendorf stands easily first. His only son, Christian Renatus, who died a.d. 1752, left behind him a number of sacred songs. Their hymns were usually set to the melodies of the Halle pietists.
10. In regard to the Christian life, the Brotherhood withdrew from politics and society, adopted stereotyped forms of speech and peculiar usages, even in their dress. They sought to live undisturbed by controversy, in personal communion with the Saviour. Their separatism as a covenanted people may be excused in view of the unbelief prevailing in the Protestant church, but it has not been overcome by the reawakening of spiritual life in the Church. As to their ecclesiastical constitution, Christ Himself, as the Chief Elder of the church, should have in it the direct government. The leaders, founding upon Proverbs xvi. 33 and Acts i. 26, held that fit expression was given to this principle by the use of the lot; but soon opposition to this practice arose, and with its abandonment the “special covenant” theory lost all its significance. The lot was used in election of office-bearers, sending of missionaries, admission to membership, etc. But in regard to marriage, it was used only by consent of the candidates for marriage, and an adverse result was not enforced. The administration of the affairs of the society lay with the conference of the united elders. From time to time general synods with legislative power were summoned. The membership was divided into groups of married, widowed, bachelors, maidens, and children, with special duties, separate residences, and also special religious services in addition to those common to all. The church officers were bishops, presbyters, deacons, deaconesses, and acolytes.
11. Missions to the Heathen.—Zinzendorf's meeting with a West Indian negro in Copenhagen awakened in him at an early period the missionary zeal. He laid the matter before the church, and in a.d. 1732 the first Herrnhut missionaries, Dober and Nitschmann, went out to St. Thomas, and in the following year missions were established in Greenland, North America, almost all the West Indian islands, South America, among the Hottentots at the Cape, the East [pg 125] Indies, among the Eskimos of Labrador, etc. Their missionary enterprise forms the most brilliant and attractive part of the history of the Moravians. Their procedure was admirably suited to uncultured races, and only for such. In the East Indies, therefore, they were unsuccessful. They were never wanting in self-denying missionaries, who resigned all from love to the Saviour. They were mostly pious, capable artisans, who threw themselves with all their hearts into their new work, and devoted themselves with affectionate tenderness to the advancement of the bodily and spiritual interests of those among whom they laboured. One of the noblest of them all was the missionary patriarch Zeisberger, who died in a.d. 1808, after toiling among the North American Indians for sixty-three years. These missions were conducted at a surprisingly small outlay. The Brethren also interested themselves in the conversion of the Jews. In a.d. 1738 Dober wrought among the Jews of Amsterdam; and with greater success in a.d. 1739, Lieberkühn, who also visited the Jews in England and Bohemia, and was honoured by them with the title of “rabbi.”63
The sharpness of the contest between Calvinism and Lutheranism was moderated on both sides. The union efforts prosecuted during the first decades of the century in Germany and Switzerland were always defeated by Lutheran opposition. In the Dutch and German Reformed Churches, even during the eighteenth century, Cocceianism was still in high repute. After it had modified strict Calvinism, the opposition between Reformed orthodoxy and Arminian heterodoxy became less pronounced, and more and more Arminian tendencies found their way into Reformed theology. What pietism and Moravianism were for the Lutheran church of Germany, Methodism was, in a much [pg 126] greater measure, and with a more enduring influence, for the episcopal church of England.
1. The German Reformed Church.—The Brandenburg dynasty made unwearied efforts to effect a union between the Lutheran and Reformed churches throughout their territories (§ 154, 4). Frederick I. (III.) instituted for this purpose in a.d. 1703 a collegium caritativum, under the presidency of the Reformed court preacher Ursinus (ranked as bishop, that he might officiate at the royal coronation), in which also, on the side of the Reformed, Jablonsky, formerly a Moravian bishop, and, on the part of the Lutherans, the cathedral preacher Winkler of Magdeburg and Lüttke, provost of Cologne-on-the-Spree, took part. Spener, who wanted not a made union but one which he himself was making, gave expression to his opinion, and soon passed over. Lüttke after a few sederunts withdrew, and when Winkler in a.d. 1703 published a plan of union, Arcanum regium, which the Lutheran church merely submitted for the approval of the Reformed king, such a storm of opposition arose against the project, that it had to be abandoned. In the following year the king took up the matter again in another way. Jablonsky engaged in negotiations with England for the introduction of the Anglican episcopal system into Prussia, in order by it to build a bridge for the union with Lutheranism. But even this plan failed, in consequence of the succession of Frederick William I. in a.d. 1713, whose shrewd sense strenuously opposed it.—The vacillating statements of the Confessio Sigismundi (§ 154, 3) regarding predestination made it possible for the Brandenburg Reformed theologians to understand it as teaching the doctrine of particular as well as universal grace, and so to make it correspond with Brandenburg Reformed orthodoxy. The rector of the Joachimsthal Gymnasium in Berlin, Paul Volkmann, in a.d. 1712, interpreted it as teaching universal grace, and so in his Theses theologicæ he constructed a system of theology, in which the divine foreknowledge of the result, as the reconciling middle term between the particularism and universalism of the call, was set forth in a manner favourable to the latter. The controversy that was aroused over this, in which even Jablonsky argued for the more liberal view, while on the other side Barckhausen, Volkmann's colleague, in his Amica Collatio Doctrinæ de Gratia, quam vera ref. confitetur Ecclesia, cum Doctr. Volkmanni, etc., came forward under the name of Pacificus Verinus as his most determined opponent, was put a stop to in a.d. 1719 by an edict of Frederick William I., which enjoined silence on both parties, without any result having been reached.—One of the noblest mystics that ever lived was Gerhard Tersteegen, died a.d. 1769. He takes a high rank as a sacred [pg 127] poet. Anxious souls made pilgrimages to him from far and near for comfort, counsel, and refreshment. Though not exactly a separatist, he had no strong attachment to the church.64—The prayer-book of Conrad Mel, pastor and rector at Hersfeld in Hesse, died a.d. 1733, continues to the present day a favourite in pious families of the Reformed communion.
2. The Reformed Church in Switzerland.—The Helvetic Confession, with its strict doctrine of predestination and its peculiar inspiration theory (§ 161, 3), had been indeed accepted, in a.d. 1675, by all the Reformed cantons as the absolute standard of doctrine in church and school; but this obligation was soon felt to be oppressive to the conscience, and so the Archbishop of Canterbury and the kings of England and Prussia repeatedly interceded for its abrogation. In Geneva, though vigorously opposed by a strictly orthodox minority, the Vénérable Compagnie succeeded, in a.d. 1706, with the rector of the Academy at its head, J. A. Turretin, whose father had been one of the principal authors of the formula, in modifying the usual terms of subscription, Sic sentio, sic profiteor, sic docebo, et contrarium non docebo, into Sic docebo quoties hoc argumentum tractandum suscipiam, contrarium non docebo, nec ore, nec calamo, nec privatim, nec publice; and afterwards, in a.d. 1725, it was entirely set aside, and adhesion to the Scriptures of the O. and N.T., and to the catechism of Calvin, made the only obligation. More persistent on both sides was the struggle in Lausanne; yet even there it gradually lost ground, and by the middle of the century it had no longer any authority in Switzerland.—The union efforts made by the Prussian dynasty found zealous but unsuccessful advocates in the chancellor Pfaff of Lutheran Württemberg (§ 167, 4), and in Reformed Switzerland in J. A. Turretin of Geneva.
3. The Dutch Reformed Church.—Toward the end of the seventeenth century, in consequence of threats on the part of the magistrates, the passionate violence of the dispute between Voetians and Cocceians (§ 162, 5) was moderated; but in the beginning of the eighteenth century the flames burst forth anew, reaching a height in 1712, when a marble bust of Cocceius was erected in a Leyden church. An obstinate Voetian, Pastor Fruytier of Rotterdam, was grievously offended at this proceeding, and published a controversial pamphlet full of the most bitter reproaches and accusations against the Cocceians, which, energetically replied to by the accused, was much more hurtful than useful to the interests of the Voetians. At last a favourable hearing was given to a word of peace which a highly respected Voetian, the [pg 128] venerable preacher of eighty years of age, J. Mor. Mommers, addressed to the parties engaged in the controversy. He published in a.d. 1738, under the title of “Eubulus,” a tract in which he proved that neither Cocceius himself nor his most distinguished adherents had in any essential point departed from the faith of the Reformed church, and that from them, therefore, in spite of all differences that had since arisen, the hand of fellowship should not be withheld. In consequence of this, the magistrates of GrŚningen first of all decided, that forthwith, in filling up vacant pastorates, a Cocceian and Voetian should be appointed alternately; a principle which gradually became the practice throughout the whole country. At the same time also care was now taken that in the theological faculties both schools should have equal representation. But meanwhile also new departures had been made in each of the two parties. Among the Voetians, after the pattern formerly given them by Teellinck (§ 162, 4), followed up by the Frisian preacher Theod. Brakel, died a.d. 1669, and further developed by Jodocus von Lodenstein of Utrecht, died a.d. 1677, mysticism had made considerable progress; and the Cocceians, in the person of Hermann Witsius, drew more closely toward the pietism of the Voetians and the Lutherans. The most distinguished representative of this conciliatory party was F. A. Lampe of Detmold, afterwards professor in Utrecht, previously and subsequently pastor in Bremen, in high repute in his church as a hymn-writer, but best known by his commentary on John.—These conciliatory measures were frustrated by the publication, in a.d. 1740, of a work by Schortinghuis of GrŚningen, which pronounced the Scriptures unintelligible and useless to the natural man, but made fruitful to the regenerate and elect by the immediate enlightenment of the Holy Spirit, evidenced by deep groanings and convulsive writhings. It was condemned by all the orthodox. The author now confined himself to his pastorate, where he was richly blessed. He died in a.d. 1750. His notions spread like an epidemic, till stamped out by the united efforts of the civil and ecclesiastical authorities in a.d. 1752.
4. Methodism.—In the episcopal church of England the living power of the gospel had evaporated into the formalism of scholastic learning and a mechanical ritualism. A reaction was set on foot by John Wesley, born a.d. 1703, a young man of deep religious earnestness and fervent zeal for the salvation of souls. During his course at Oxford, in a.d. 1729, along with some friends, including his brother Charles, he founded a society to promote pious living.65 Those thus leagued together were scornfully called Methodists. From a.d. 1732, George Whitefield, born in a.d. 1714, a youth burning with zeal for his own [pg 129] and his fellow men's salvation, wrought enthusiastically along with them. In a.d. 1735 the brothers Wesley went to America to labour for the conversion of the Indians in Georgia. On board ship they met Nitschmann, and in Savannah Spangenberg, who exercised a powerful influence over them. John Wesley accepted a pastorate in Savannah, but encountered so many hindrances, that he decided to return to England in a.d. 1738. Whitefield had just sailed for America, but returned that same year. Meanwhile Wesley visited Marienborn and Herrnhut, and so became personally acquainted with Zinzendorf. He did not feel thoroughly satisfied, and so declined to join the society. On his return he began, along with Whitefield, the great work of his life. In many cities they founded religious societies, preached daily to immense crowds in Anglican churches, and when the churches were refused, in the open air, often to 20,000 or even 30,000 hearers. They sought to arouse careless sinners by all the terrors of the law and the horrors of hell, and by a thorough repentance to bring about immediate conversion. An immense number of hardened sinners, mostly of the lower orders, were thus awakened and brought to repentance amid shrieks and convulsions. Whitefield, who divided his attentions between England and America, delivered in thirty-four years 18,000 sermons; Wesley, who survived his younger companion by twenty-one years, dying in a.d. 1791, and was wont to say the world was his parish, delivered still more. Their association with the Moravians had been broken off in a.d. 1740. To the latter, not only was the Methodists' style of preaching objectionable, but also their doctrine of “Christian perfection,” according to which the true, regenerate Christian can and must reach a perfect holiness of life, not indeed free from temptation and error, but from all sins of weakness and sinful lusts. Wesley in turn accused the Herrnhuters of a dangerous tendency toward the errors of the quietists and antinomians. Zinzendorf came himself to London to remove the misunderstanding, but did not succeed. The great Methodist leaders were themselves separated from one another in a.d. 1741. Whitefield's doctrine of grace and election was Calvinistic; Wesley's Arminian.—From a.d. 1748 the Countess of Huntingdon attached herself to the Methodists, and secured an entrance for their preaching into aristocratic circles. With all her humility and self-sacrifice she remained aristocrat enough to insist on being head and organizer. Seeing she could not play this rôle with Wesley, she attached herself closely to Whitefield. He became her domestic chaplain, and with other clergymen accompanied her on her travels. Wherever she went she posed as a “queen of the Methodists,” and was allowed to preach and carry on pastoral work. She built sixty-six chapels, and in a.d. 1768 founded a seminary for training preachers at Trevecca in Wales, under the oversight of the able and [pg 130] gentle John Fletcher, reserving supreme control to herself. After Whitefield's death, in a.d. 1770, the opposition between the Calvinistic followers of Whitefield and the Arminian Wesleyans burst out in a much more violent form. Fletcher and his likeminded fellow labourers were charged with teaching the horrible heresy of the universality of grace, and were on that account discharged by the countess from the seminary of Trevecca. They now joined Wesley, around whom the great majority of the Methodists had gathered.
5. The Methodists did not wish to separate from the episcopal church, but to work as a leaven within it. Whitefield was able to maintain this connexion by the aid of his aristocratic countess and her relationship with the higher clergy; but Wesley, spurning such aid, and trusting to his great powers of organization, felt driven more and more to set up an independent society. When the churches were closed against him and his fellow workers, and preaching in the open air was forbidden, he built chapels for himself.66 The first was opened in Bristol, in a.d. 1739. When his ordained associates were too few for the work, he obtained the assistance of lay preachers. He founded two kinds of religious societies: The united societies embraced all, the band societies only the tried and proved of his followers. Then he divided the united societies again into classes of from ten to twenty persons each, and the class-leaders were required to give accurate accounts of the spiritual condition and progress of those under their care. Each member of the united as well as the band societies held a society ticket, which had to be renewed quarterly. The outward affairs of the societies were managed by stewards, who also took care of the poor. A number of local societies constituted a circuit with a superintendent and several itinerant preachers.67 Wesley superintended all the departments of oversight, administration, and arrangement, supported from a.d. 1744 by an annual conference. Daily preaching and devotional exercises in the chapels, weekly class-meetings, monthly watchnights, quarterly fasts and lovefeasts, an annual service for the renewing of the covenant, and a great multiplication of prayer-meetings, gave a special character to Methodistic piety. Charles Wesley composed hymns for their services. They carefully avoided collision with the services of the state church. The American Methodists, who had been up to this time supplied by Wesley with itinerant missionaries, in a.d. 1784, after the War of Independence, gave vigorous expression to their wish for a more independent ecclesiastical constitution, [pg 131] which led Wesley, in opposition to all right order, to ordain for them by his own hand several preachers, and to appoint, in the person of Thomas Coke, a superintendent, who assumed in America the title of bishop. Coke became the founder of the Methodist Episcopal Church of America, which soon outstripped all other denominations in its zeal for the conversion of sinners, and in consequent success. The breach with the mother church was completed by the adoption of a creed in which the Thirty-nine Articles were reduced to twenty-five. At the last conference presided over by Wesley, a.d. 1790, it was announced that they had in Britain 119 circuits, 313 preachers, and in the United States 97 circuits and 198 preachers. After Wesley's death, in a.d. 1791, his autocratic supremacy devolved, in accordance with the Methodist “Magna Charta,” the Deed of Declaration of a.d. 1784, upon a fixed conference of 100 members, but its hierarchical organization has been the cause of many subsequent splits and divisions.68
6. Theological Literature—Clericus, of Amsterdam, died a.d. 1736, an Arminian divine, distinguished himself in biblical criticism, hermeneutics, exegesis, and church history. J. J. Wettstein was in a.d. 1730 deposed for heresy, and died in a.d. 1754 as professor at the Remonstrant seminary at Amsterdam. His critical edition of the N.T. of a.d. 1751 had a great reputation. Schultens of Leyden, died a.d. 1750, introduced a new era for O.T. philology by the comparative study of related dialects, especially Arabic. He wrote commentaries on Job and Proverbs. Of the Cocceian exegetes we mention, Lampe of Bremen, died a.d. 1729. “Com. on John,” three vols., etc., and J. Marck of Leyden, died a.d. 1731, “Com. on Minor Prophets.” In biblical antiquity, Reland of Utrecht, died a.d. 1718, wrote “Palæstina ex vett. [pg 132]monum. Illustr. Antiquitt. ss.”; in ecclesiastical antiquity, Bingham, died a.d. 1723, “Origines Ecclest.; or, Antiquities of the Christian Church,” ten vols., 1724, a masterpiece not yet superseded. Of English apologists who wrote against the deists, Leland, died a.d. 1766, “Advantage and Necessity of the Christian Revelation”; Stackhouse, died a.d. 1752, “History of the Bible.” Of dogmatists, Stapfer of Bern, died a.d. 1775, and Wyttenbach of Marburg, died a.d. 1779, who followed the Wolffian method. Among church historians, J. A. Turretin of Geneva, died a.d. 1757, and Herm. Venema of Franeker, died a.d. 1787.—The most celebrated of the writers of sacred songs in the English language was the Congregationalist preacher Isaac Watts, died a.d. 1748, whose “Hymns and Spiritual Songs,” which first appeared in a.d. 1707, still hold their place in the hymnbooks of all denominations, and have largely contributed to overthrow the Reformed prejudice against using any other than biblical psalms in the public service of praise.
The pietism of the eighteenth century, like the Reformation of the sixteenth, was followed by the appearance of all sorts of fanatics and extremists. The converted were collected into little companies, which, as ecclesiolæ in ecclesia, preserved the living flame amid prevailing darkness, and out of these arose separatists who spoke of the church as Babylon, regarded its ordinances impure, and its preaching a mere jingle of words. They obtained their spiritual nourishment from the mystical and theosophical writings of BŚhme, Gichtel, Guyon, Poiret, etc. Their chief centre was Wetterau, where, in the house of Count Casimir von Berleburg, all persecuted pietists, separatists, fanatics, and sectaries found refuge. The count chose from them his court officials and personal servants, although he himself belonged to the national Reformed church. There was scarcely a district in Protestant Germany, Switzerland, and the Netherlands where there were not groups of such separatists; some mere harmless enthusiasts, others circulated pestiferous and immoral doctrines. Quite apart from pietism Swedenborgianism made its appearance, claiming to have a new [pg 133] revelation. Of the older sects the Baptists and the Quakers sent off new swarms, and even predestinationism gave rise to a form of mysticism allied to pantheism.
1. Fanatics and Separatists in Germany.—Juliana von Asseburg, a young lady highly esteemed in Magdeburg for her piety, declared that from her seventh year she had visions and revelations, especially about the millennium. She found a zealous supporter in Dr. J. W. Petersen, superintendent of Lüneburg. After his marriage with Eleonore von Merlau, who had similar revelations, he proclaimed by word and writing a fantastic chiliasm and the restitution of all things. He was deposed in a.d. 1692, and died in a.d. 1727.69 Henry Horche, professor of theology at Herborn, was the originator of a similar movement in the Reformed church. He founded several Philadelphian societies (§ 162, 9) in Hesse, and composed a “mystical and prophetical bible,” the so called “Marburg Bible,” a.d. 1712. Of other fanatical preachers of that period one of the most prominent was Hochmann, a student of law expelled from Halle for his extravagances, a man of ability and eloquence, and highly esteemed by Tersteegen. Driven from place to place, he at last found refuge at Berleburg, and died there in a.d. 1721. In Württemberg the pious court chaplain, Hedinger, of Stuttgart, died a.d. 1703, was the father of pietism and separatism. The most famous of his followers were Gruber and Rock, who, driven from Württemberg, settled with other separatists at Wetterau, renouncing the use of the sacraments and public worship. Of those gathered together in the court of Count Casimir, the most eminent were Dr. Carl, his physician, the French mystic Marsay, and J. H. Haug, who had been expelled from Strassburg, a proficient in the oriental languages. They issued a great number of mystical works, chief of all the Berleburg Bible, in eight vols., 1726-1742, of which Haug was the principal author. Its exposition proceeded in accordance with the threefold sense; it vehemently contended against the church doctrine of justification, against the confessional writings, the clerical order, the dead church, etc. It showed occasionally profound insight, and made brilliant remarks, but contained also many trivialities and absurdities. The mysticism which is prominent in this work lacks originality, and is compiled from the mystico-theosophical writings of all ages from Origen down to Madame Guyon.
2. The Inspired Societies in Wetterau.—After the unfortunate issue of the Camisard War in a.d. 1705 (§ 153, 4) the chief of the prophets [pg 134] of the Cevennes fled to England. They were at first well received, but were afterwards excommunicated and cast into prison. In a.d. 1711 several of them went to the Netherlands, and thence made their way into Germany. Three brothers, students at Halle, named Pott, adopted their notion of the gift of inspiration, and introduced it into Wetterau in a.d. 1714. Gruber and Rock, the leaders of the separatists there, were at first opposed to the doctrine, but were overpowered by the Spirit, and soon became its most enthusiastic champions. Prayer-meetings were organized, immense lovefeasts were held, and by itinerant brethren an ecclesia ambulatoria was set on foot, by which spiritual nourishment was brought to believers scattered over the land and the children of the prophets were gathered from all countries. The “utterances” given forth in ecstasy were calls to repentance, to prayer, to the imitation of Christ, revelations of the divine will in matters affecting the communities, proclamations of the near approach of the Divine judgment upon a depraved church and world, but without fanatical-sensual chiliasm. Also, except in the contempt of the sacraments, they held by the essentials of the church doctrine. In a.d. 1715 a split occurred between the true and the false among the inspired. The true maintained a formal constitution, and in a.d. 1716 excluded all who would not submit to that discipline. By a.d. 1719 only Rock claimed the gift of inspiration, and did so till his death in a.d. 1749. Gruber died in a.d. 1728, and with him a pillar of the society fell. Rock was the only remaining prop. A new era of their history begins with their intercourse with the Herrnhuters. Zinzendorf sent them a deputation in a.d. 1730, and paid them a visit in person at Berleberg. Rock's profound Christian personality made a deep impression upon him. But he was offended at their contempt of the sacraments, and at the convulsive character of their utterances. This, however, did not hinder him from expressing his reverence for their able leader, who in return visited Zinzendorf at Herrnhut in a.d. 1732. In the interests of his own society Zinzendorf shrank from identifying himself with those of Wetterau. Rock denounced him as a new Babylon-botcher, and he retaliated by calling Rock a false prophet. When the Herrnhuters were driven from Wetterau in a.d. 1750 (§ 168, 3, 7), the inspired communities entered on their inheritance. But with Rock's death in a.d. 1749 prophecy had ceased among them. They sank more and more into insignificance, until the revival of spiritual life, a.d. 1816-1821, brought them into prominence again. Government interference drove most of them to America.
3. Quite a peculiar importance belongs to J. C. Dippel, theologian, physician, alchemist, discoverer of Prussian blue and oleum dippelii, at first an orthodox opponent of pietism, then, through Gottfr. Arnold's influence, an adherent of the pietists, and ultimately of the [pg 135] separatists. In a.d. 1697, under the name of Christianus Democritus, he began to write in a scoffing tone of all orthodox Christianity, with a strange blending of mysticism and rationalism, but without any trace profound Christian experience. Persecuted on every hand, exiled or imprisoned, he went hither and thither through Germany, Holland, Denmark, and Sweden, and found a refuge at last at Berleberg in a.d. 1729. Here he came in contact with the inspired, who did everything in their power to win him over; but he declared that he would rather give himself to the devil than to this Spirit of God. He was long intimate with Zinzendorf, but afterwards poured out upon him the bitterest abuse. He died in the count's castle at Berleberg in a.d. 1734.70
4. Separatists of Immoral Tendency.—One of the worst was the Buttlar sect, founded by Eva von Buttlar, a native of Hesse, who had married a French refugee, lived gaily for ten years at the court of Eisenach, and then joined the pietists and became a rigid separatist. Separated from her husband, she associated with the licentiate Winter, and founded a Philadelphian society at Allendorf in a.d. 1702, where the foulest immoralities were practised. Eva herself was reverenced as the door of paradise, the new Jerusalem, the mother of all, Sophia come from heaven, the new Eve, and the incarnation of the Spirit. Winter was the incarnation of the Father, and their son Appenfeller the incarnation of the Son. They pronounced marriage sinful; sensual lusts must be slain in spiritual communion, then even carnal association is holy. Eva lived with all the men of the sect in the most shameless adultery. So did also the other women of the community. Expelled from Allendorf after a stay of six weeks, they sought unsuccessfully to gain a footing in various places. At Cologne they went over to the Catholic church. Their immoralities reached their climax at Lüde near Pyrmont. Winter was sentenced to death in a.d. 1706, but was let off with scourging. Eva escaped the same punishment by flight, and continued her evil practices unchecked for another year. She afterwards returned to Altona, where with her followers leading outwardly an honourable life, she attached herself to the Lutheran church, and died, honoured and esteemed, in a.d. 1717.—In a similar way arose in a.d. 1789 the Bordelum sect, founded at Bordelum by the licentiates Borsenius and Bär; and the Brüggeler sect, at Brüggeler in Canton Bern, where in a.d. 1748 the brothers Kohler gave themselves out as the two witnesses (Rev. xi.). Of a like nature too was the sect of Zionites at Ronsdorf in the Duchy of Berg. Elias Eller, a manufacturer at Elberfeld, excited by mystical [pg 136] writings, married in a.d. 1725 a rich old widow, but soon found more pleasure in a handsome young lady, Anna von Buchel, who by a nervous sympathetic infection was driven into prophetic ecstasy. She proclaimed the speedy arrival of the millennium; Eller identified her with the mother of the man-child (Rev. xii. 1). When his wife had pined away through jealousy and neglect and died, he married Buchel. The first child she bore him was a girl, and the second, a boy, soon died. When a strong opposition arose in Elberfeld against the sect, he, along with his followers, founded Ronsdorf, as a New Zion, in a.d. 1737. The colony obtained civil rights, and Eller was made burgomaster. Anna having died in a.d. 1744, Eller gave his colony a new mother, and practised every manner of deceit and tyranny. After the infatuation had lasted a long time, the eyes of the Reformed pastor Schleiermacher, grandfather of the famous theologian, were at last opened. By flight to the Netherlands he escaped the fate of another revolter, whom Eller persuaded the authorities at Düsseldorf to put to death as a sorcerer. Every complaint against himself was quashed by Eller's bribery of the officials. After his death in a.d. 1750 his stepson continued this Zion game for a long time.
5. Swedenborgianism.—Emanuel von Swedenborg was born at Stockholm, in a.d. 1688, son of the strict Lutheran bishop of West Gothland, Jasper Swedberg. He was appointed assessor of the School of Mines at Stockholm, and soon showed himself to be a man of encyclopædic information and of speculative ability. After long examination of the secrets of nature, in a condition of magnetic ecstasy, in which he thought that he had intercourse with spirits, sometimes in heaven, sometimes in hell, he became convinced, in a.d. 1743, that he was called by these revelations to restore corrupted Christianity by founding a church of the New Jerusalem as the finally perfected church. He published the apocalyptic revelations as a new gospel: “Arcana Cœlestia in Scr. s. Detecta,” in seven vols.; “Vera Chr. Rel.,” two vols. After his death, in a.d. 1772, his “Vera Christiana Religio” was translated into Swedish, but his views never got much hold in his native country. They spread more widely in England, where John Clowes, rector of St. John's Church, Manchester, translated his writings, and himself wrote largely in their exposition and commendation. Separate congregations with their own ministers, and forms of worship, sprang up through England in a.d. 1788, and soon there were as many as fifty throughout the country. From England the New Church spread to America.—In Germany it was specially throughout Württemberg that it found adherents. There, in a.d. 1765, Oetinger (§ 171, 9) recognised Swedenborg's revelations, and introduced many elements from them into his theosophical system.—Swedenborg's religious [pg 137] system was speculative mysticism, with a physical basis and rationalizing results. The aim of religion with him is the opening of an intimate correspondence between the spiritual world and man, and giving an insight into the mystery of the connexion between the two. The Bible (excluding the apostolic epistles, as merely expository), pre-eminently the Apocalypse, is recognised by him as God's word; to be studied, however, not in its literal but in its spiritual or inner sense. Of the church dogmas there is not one which he did not either set aside or rationalistically explain away. He denounces in the strongest terms the church doctrine of the Trinity. God is with him only one Person, who manifests Himself in three different forms: the Father is the principle of the manifesting God; the Son, the manifested form; the Spirit, the manifested activity. The purpose of the manifestation of Christ is the uniting of the human and Divine; redemption is nothing more than the combating and overcoming of the evil spirits. But angels and devils are spirits of dead men glorified and damned. He did not believe in a resurrection of the flesh, but maintained that the spiritual form of the body endures after death. The second coming of Christ will not be personal and visible, but spiritual through a revelation of the spiritual sense of Holy Scripture, and is realized by the founding of the church of the New Jerusalem.71
6. New Baptist Sects (§ 163, 3).—In Wetterau about a.d. 1708 an anabaptist sect arose called Dippers, because they did not recognise infant baptism and insisted upon the complete immersion of adult believers. They appeared in Pennsylvania in a.d. 1719, and founded settlements in other states. Of the “perfect” they required absolute separation from all worldly practices and enjoyments and a simple, apostolic style of dress. To baptism and the Lord's supper they added washing the feet and the fraternal kiss and anointing the sick. The Seventh-day Baptists observe the seventh instead of the first day of the week, and enjoin on the “perfect” celibacy and the community of goods. New sects from England continued to spread over America. Of these were the Seed or Sucker Baptists, who identified the non-elect with the seed of the serpent, and on account of their doctrine of predestination regarded all instruction and care of children useless. A similar predestinarian exaggeration is seen in the Hard-shell Baptists, who denounce all home and foreign missions as running counter to the Divine sovereignty. Many, sometimes called Campbellites from their founder, reject any party name, claiming to be simply Christians, [pg 138] and acknowledge only so much in Scripture as is expressly declared to be “the word of the Lord.” The Six-Principles-Baptists limit their creed to the six articles of Hebrews vi. 1, 2. The brothers Haldane, about the middle of the eighteenth century, founded in Scotland the Baptist sect of Haldanites, which has with great energy applied itself to the practical cultivation of the Christian life.—Continuation, §§ 208, 1; 211, 3.
7. New Quaker Sects.—The Jumpers, who sprang up among the Methodists of Cornwall about a.d. 1760, are in principle closely allied to the early Quakers (§ 163, 4). They leaped and danced after the style of David before the ark and uttered inarticulate howls. They settled in America, where they have adherents still.—The Shakers originated from the prophets of the Cevennes who fled to England in a.d. 1705. They converted a Quaker family at Bolton in Lancashire named Wardley, and the community soon grew. In a.d. 1758 Anna Lee, wife of a farrier Stanley, joined the society, and, as the apocalyptic bride, inaugurated the millennium. She taught that the root of all sin was the relationship of the sexes. Maltreated by the mob, she emigrated to America, along with thirty companions, in a.d. 1774. Though persecuted here also, the sect increased and formed in the State of New York the Millennial Church or United Society of Believers. Anna died in a.d. 1784; but her prophets declared that she had merely laid aside the earthly garb and assumed the heavenly, so that only then the veneration of “Mother Anna” came into force. As Christ is the Son of the eternal Wisdom, Anna is the daughter; as Christ is the second Adam, she is the second Eve, and spiritual mother of believers as Christ is their father. Celibacy, community of goods, common labour (chiefly gardening), as a pleasure, not a burden, common domestic life as brothers and sisters, and constant intercourse with the spirit world, are the main points in her doctrine. By the addition of voluntary proselytes and the adoption of poor helpless children the sect has grown, till now it numbers 3,000 or 4,000 souls in eighteen villages. The capital is New Lebanon in the State of New York. The name Shakers was given them from the quivering motion of body in their solemn dances. In their services they march about singing “On to heaven we will be going,” “March heavenward, yea, victorious band,” etc. Like the Quakers (§ 163, 6) they have neither a ministry nor sacraments, and their whole manner of life is modelled on that of the Quakers. The purity of the relation of brothers and sisters has always been free from suspicion.72[pg 139]
8. Predestinarian-Mystical Sects.—The Hebræans, founded by Verschoor, a licentiate of the Reformed church of Holland deposed under suspicion of Spinozist views, in the end of the seventeenth century, hold it indispensably necessary to read the word of God in the original. They were fatalists, and maintained that the elect could commit no sin. True faith consisted in believing this doctrine of their own sinlessness. About the same time sprang up the Hattemists, followers of Pontiaan von Hattem, a preacher deposed for heresy, with fatalistic views like the Hebræans, but with a strong vein of pantheistic mysticism. True piety consisted in the believer resting in God in a purely passive manner, and letting God alone care for him. The two sects united under the name of Hattemists, and continued to exist in Holland and Zealand till about a.d. 1760.
In England during the first half of the century deism had still several active propagandists, and throughout the whole century efforts, not altogether unsuccessful, were made to spread Unitarian views. From the middle of the century, when the English deistic unbelief had died out, the “Illumination,” under the name of rationalism, found an entrance into Germany. Arminian pelagianism, recommended by brilliant scholarship, English deism, spread by translations and refutations, and French naturalism, introduced by a great and much honoured king, were the outward factors in securing this result. The freemason lodges, carried [pg 140] into Germany from England, a relic of mediævalism, aided the movement by their endeavour after a universal religion of a moral and practical kind. The inward factors were the Wolffian philosophy (§ 167, 3), the popular philosophy, and the pietism, with its step-father separatism (§ 170), which immediately prepared the soil for the sowing of rationalism. Orthodoxy, too, with its formulas that had been outlived, contributed to the same end. German rationalism is essentially distinguished from Deism and Naturalism by not breaking completely with the Bible and the church, but eviscerating both by its theories of accommodation and by its exaggerated representations of the limitations of the age in which the books of Scripture were written and the doctrines of Christianity were formulated. It thus treats the Bible as an important document, and the church as a useful religious institution. Over against rationalism arose supernaturalism, appealing directly to revelation. It was a dilution of the old church faith by the addition of more or less of the water of rationalism. Its reaction was therefore weak and vacillating. The temporary success of the vulgar rationalism lay, not in its own inherent strength, but in the correspondence that existed between it and the prevailing spirit of the age. The philosophy, however, as well as the national literature of the Germans, now began a victorious struggle against these tendencies, and though itself often indifferent and even hostile to Christianity, it recognised in Christ a school-master. Pestalozzi performed a similar service to popular education by his attempts to reform effete systems.
1. Deism, Arianism, and Unitarianism in the English Church.—(1) The Deists (§ 164, 3). With Locke's philosophy (§ 164, 2) deism entered on a new stage of its development. It is henceforth vindicated on the ground of its reasonableness. The most notable deists of this age were John Toland, an Irishman, first Catholic, then Arminian, died a.d. 1722, author of “Christianity not Mysterious,” “Nazarenus, or [pg 141] Jewish, Gentile, and Mohametan Christianity,” etc. The Earl of Shaftesbury, died a.d. 1713, wrote “Characteristics of Men,” etc. Anthony Collins, J.P. in Essex, died a.d. 1729, author of “Priestcraft in Perfection,” “Discourse of Freethinking,” etc. Thomas Woolston, fellow of Cambridge, died in prison in a.d. 1733, author of “Discourse on the Miracles of the Saviour.” Mandeville of Dort, physician in London, died a.d. 1733, wrote “Free Thoughts on Religion.” Matthew Tindal, professor of law in Oxford, died a.d. 1733, wrote “Christianity as Old as the Creation.” Thomas Morgan, nonconformist minister, deposed as an Arian, then a physician, died a.d. 1743, wrote “The Moral Philosopher.” Thomas Chubb, glover and tallow-chandler in Salisbury, died a.d. 1747, author of popular compilations, “The True Gospel of Jesus Christ.” Viscount Bolingbroke, statesman, charged with high treason and pardoned, died a.d. 1751, writings entitled, “Philosophical Works.”—Along with the deists as an opponent of positive Christianity may be classed the famous historian and sceptic David Hume, librarian in Edinburgh, died a.d. 1776, author of “Inquiry concerning the Human Understanding,” “Natural History of Religion,” “Dialogues concerning Natural Religion,” etc.74—Deism never made way among the people, and no attempt was made to form a sect. Among the numerous opponents of deism these are chief: Samuel Clarke, died a.d. 1729; Thomas Sherlock, Bishop of London, died a.d. 1761; Chandler, Bishop of Durham, died a.d. 1750; Leland, Presbyterian minister in Dublin, died a.d. 1766, wrote “View of Principal Deistic Writers,” three vols., 1754; Warburton, Bishop of Gloucester, died a.d. 1779; Nath. Lardner, dissenting minister, died a.d. 1768, wrote “Credibility of the Gospel History,” seventeen vols., 1727-1757. With these may be ranked the famous pulpit orator of the Reformed church of France, Saurin, died a.d. 1730, author of Discours hist., crit., theol., sur les Evénements les plus remarkables du V. et N.T.—(2) The So-called Arians. In the beginning of the century several distinguished theologians of the Anglican church sought to give currency to an Arian doctrine of the Trinity. Most conspicuous was Wm. Whiston, a distinguished mathematician, physicist, and astronomer of the school of Sir Isaac Newton, and his successor in the mathematical chair at Cambridge. Deprived of this office in a.d. 1708 for spreading his heterodox views, he issued in a.d. 1711 a five-volume work, “Primitive Christianity Revived,” in which he justified his Arian doctrine of [pg 142] the Trinity as primitive and as taught by the ante-Nicene Fathers, and insisted upon augmenting the N.T. canon by the addition of twenty-nine books of the apostolic and other Fathers, including the apostolic “Constitutions” and “Recognitions” which he maintained were genuine works of Clement. Subsequently he adopted Baptist views, and lost himself in fantastic chiliastic speculations. He died a.d. 1752. More sensible and moderate was Samuel Clarke, also distinguished as a mathematician of Newton's school and as a classical philologist. As an opponent of deism in sermons and treatises he had gained a high reputation as a theologian, when his work, “The Scripture Doctrine of the Trinity,” in a.d. 1712, led to his being accused of Arianism by convocation; but by conciliatory explanations he succeeded in retaining his office till his death in a.d. 1729. But the excitement caused by the publication of his work continued through several decades, and was everywhere the cause of division. His ablest apologist was Dan. Whitby, and his keenest opponent Dan. Waterland.—(3) The Later Unitarians. The anti-trinitarian movement entered on a new stage in a.d. 1770. After Archdeacon Blackburne of London, in a.d. 1766, had started the idea, at first anonymously, in his “Confessional,” he joined in a.d. 1772 with other freethinkers, among whom was his son-in-law Theophilus Lindsey, in presenting to Parliament a petition with 250 signatures, asking to have the clergy of the Anglican church freed from the obligation of subscribing to the Thirty-nine Articles and the Liturgy, and to have the requirement limited to assent to the Scriptures. This prayer was rejected in the Lower House by 217 votes against 71. Lindsey now resigned his clerical office, announced his withdrawal from the Anglican church, founded and presided over a Unitarian congregation in London from a.d. 1774, and published a large number of controversial Unitarian tracts. He died in a.d. 1808. The celebrated chemist and physicist Joseph Priestley, a.d. 1733-1806, who had been a dissenting minister in Birmingham from a.d. 1780, joined the Unitarian movement in 1782, giving it a new impetus by his high scientific reputation. He wrote the “History of the Corruptions of Christianity,” and the “History of Early Opinions about Jesus Christ,” denying that there is any biblical foundation for the orthodox doctrine of the Trinity, and seeking to show that it had been forced upon the church against her will from the Platonic philosophy. These and a whole series of other controversial writings occasioned great excitement, not only among theologians, but also among the English people of all ranks. At last the mob rose against him in a.d. 1791. His house and all his scientific collections and apparatus were burnt. He narrowly escaped with his life, and soon after settled in America, where he wrote a church history in four vols. Of his many English opponents the most eminent was Bishop [pg 143] Sam. Horsley, a distinguished mathematician and commentator on the works of Sir Isaac Newton.
2. Freemasons.—The mediæval institution of freemasons (§ 104, 13) won much favour in England, especially after the Great Fire of London in a.d. 1666. The first step toward the formation of freemason lodges of the modern type was taken about the end of the sixteenth century, when men of distinction in other callings sought admission as honorary members. After the rebuilding of London and the completion of St. Paul's in a.d. 1710, most of the lodges became defunct, and the four that continued to exist united in a.d. 1717 into one grand lodge in London, which, renouncing material masonry, assumed the task of rearing the temple of humanity. In a.d. 1721 the Rev. Mr. Anderson prepared a constitution for this reconstruction of a trade society into a universal brotherhood, according to which all “free masons” faithfully observing the moral law as well as all the claims of humanity and patriotism, came under obligation to profess the religion common to all good men, transcending all confessional differences, without any individual being thereby hindered from holding his own particular views. Although, in imitation of the older institution, all members by reason of their close connexion were bound to observe the strictest secrecy in regard to their masonic signs, rites of initiation and promotion, and forms of greeting, it is not properly a secret society, since the constitution was published in a.d. 1723, and members publicly acknowledge that they are such.—From London the new institute spread over all England and the colonies. Lodges were founded in Paris in a.d. 1725, in Hamburg in a.d. 1737, in Berlin in a.d. 1740. This last was raised in a.d. 1744 into a grand lodge, with Frederick II. as grand master. But soon troubles and disputes arose, which broke up the order about the end of the century. Rosicrucians (§ 160, 1) and alchemists, pretending to hold the secrets of occult science, Jesuits (§ 210, 1), with Catholic hierarchical tendencies, and “Illuminati” (§ 165, 13), with rationalistic and infidel tendencies, as well as adventurers of every sort, had made the lodges centres of quackery, juggling, and plots.75
3. The German “Illumination.”—(1) Its Precursors. One of the first of these, following in the footsteps of Kuntzen and Dippel, was J. Chr. Edelmann of Weissenfels, who died a.d. 1767. He began in a.d. 1735 the publication of an immense series of writings in a rough but powerful style, filled with bitter scorn for positive Christianity. He went from one sect to another, but never found what he sought. In a.d. 1741 he accepted Zinzendorf's invitation, and stayed with the [pg 144] count for a long time. He next joined the Berleberg separatists, because they despised the sacraments, and contributed to their Bible commentary, though Haug had to alter much of his work before it could be used. This and his contempt for prayer brought the connexion between him and the society to an end. He then led a vagabond life up and down through Germany. Edelmann regarded himself as a helper of providence, and at least a second Luther. Christianity he pronounced the most irrational of all religions; church history a conglomeration of immorality, lies, hypocrisy, and fanaticism; prophets and apostles, bedlamites; and even Christ by no means a perfect pattern and teacher. The world needs only one redemption—redemption from Christianity. Providence, virtue, and immortality are the only elements in religion. No less than 166 separate treatises came from his facile pen.—Laurence Schmidt of Wertheim in Baden, a scholar of Wolff, was author of the notorious “Wertheimer Bible Version,” which rendered Scripture language into the dialect of the eighteenth century, and eviscerated it of all positive doctrines of revelation. This book was confiscated by the authorities, and its author cast into prison.
4. (2) The Age of Frederick the Great. Hostility to all positive Christianity spread from England and France into Germany. The writings of the English deists were translated and refuted, but mostly in so weak a style that the effect was the opposite of that intended. Whilst English deism with its air of thoroughness made way among the learned, the poison of frivolous French naturalism committed its ravages among the higher circles. The great king of Prussia Frederick II., a.d. 1740-1786, surrounded by French freethinkers Voltaire, D'Argens, La Metrie, etc., wished every man in his kingdom to be saved after his own fashion. In this he was quite earnest, although his personal animosity to all ecclesiastical and pietistic religion made him sometimes act harshly and unjustly. Thus, when Francke of Halle (son of the famous A. H. Francke) had exhorted his theological students to avoid the theatre, the king, designating him “hypocrite” Francke, ordered him to attend the theatre himself and have his attendance attested by the manager. His bitter hatred of all “priests” was directed mainly against their actual or supposed intolerance, hypocrisy, and priestly arrogance; and where he met with undoubted integrity, as in Gellert and Seb. Bach, or simple, earnest piety, as in General Ziethen, he was not slow in paying to it the merited tribute of hearty acknowledgment and respect. His own religion was a philosophical deism, from which he could thoroughly refute Holbach's materialistic “Système de la Nature.”—Under the name of the German popular philosophy (Moses Mendelssohn, Garve, Eberhard, Platner, Steinbart, etc.), which started from the Wolffian [pg 145] philosophy, emptied of its Christian contents, there arose a weak, vapoury, and self-satisfied philosophizing on the part of the common human reason. Basedow was the reformer of pedagogy in the sense of the “Illumination,” after the style of Rousseau, and crying up his wares in the market made a great noise for a while, although Herder declared that he would not trust calves, far less men, to be educated by such a pedagogue. The “Universal German Library” of the Berlin publisher Nicolai, 106 vols. a.d. 1765-1792, was a literary Inquisition tribunal against all faith in revelation or the church. The “Illumination” in the domain of theology took the name of rationalism. Pietistic Halle cast its skin, and along with Berlin took front rank among the promoters of the “Illumination.” In the other universities champions of the new views soon appeared, and rationalistic pastors spread over all Germany, to preach only of moral improvement, or to teach from the pulpit about the laws of health, agriculture, gardening, natural science, etc. The old liturgies were mutilated, hymn-books revised after the barbarous tastes of the age, and songs of mere moral tendency substituted for those that spoke of Christ's atonement. An ecclesiastical councillor, Lang of Regensburg, dispensed the communion with the words: “Eat this bread! The Spirit of devotion rest on you with His rich blessing! Drink a little wine! The virtue lies not in this wine; it lies in you, in the divine doctrine, and in God.” The Berlin provost, W. Alb. Teller, declared publicly: “The Jews ought on account of their faith in God, virtue, and immortality, to be regarded as genuine Christians.” C. Fr. Bahrdt, after he had been deposed for immorality from various clerical and academical offices, and was cast off by the theologians, sought to amuse the people with his wit as a taphouse-keeper in Halle, and died there of an infamous disease in a.d. 1792.
5. (3) The WŚllner Reaction.—In vain did the Prussian government, after the death of Frederick the Great, under Frederick William II., a.d. 1786-1797, endeavour to restore the church to the enjoyment of its old exclusive rights by punishing every departure from its doctrines, and insisting that preaching should be in accordance with the Confession. At the instigation of the Rosicrucians (§ 160, 1) and of the minister Von WŚllner, a country pastor ennobled by the king, the Religious Edict of 1788 was issued, followed by a statement of severe penalties; then by a Schema Examinationis Candidatorum ss. Ministerii rite Instituendi; and in a.d. 1791, by a commission for examination under the Berlin chief consistory and all the provincial consistories, with full powers, not only over candidates, but also over all settled pastors. But notwithstanding all the energy with which he sought to carry out his edict, the minister could accomplish nothing in the face of public opinion, which favoured the resistance of the chief [pg 146] consistory. Only one deposition, that of Schulz of Gielsdorf, near Berlin, was effected, in a.d. 1792. Frederick William III., a.d. 1797-1840, dismissed WŚllner in a.d. 1798, and set aside the edict as only fostering hypocrisy and sham piety.
6. The Transition Theology.—Four men, who endeavoured to maintain their own belief in revelation, did more than all others to prepare the way for rationalism: Ernesti of Leipzig, in the department of N.T. exegesis; Michaelis of GŚttingen, in O.T. exegesis; Semler of Halle, in biblical and historical criticism; and TŚllner of Frankfort-on-the-Oder, in dogmatics. J. A. Ernesti, a.d. 1707-1781, from a.d. 1734 rector of St. Thomas' School, from a.d. 1742 professor at Leipzig, colleague to Chr. A. Crusius (§ 167, 3), was specially eminent as a classical scholar, and maintained his reputation in that department, even after becoming professor of theology in a.d. 1758. His Institutio Interpretis N.T., of a.d. 1761, made it an axiom of exegesis that the exposition of Scripture should be conducted precisely as that of any other book. But even in the domain of classical literature there must be an understanding of the author as a whole, and the expositor must have appreciation of the writer's spirit, as well as have acquaintance with his language and the customs of his age. And just from Ernesti's want of this, his treatise on biblical hermeneutics is rationalistic, and he became the father of rationalistic exegesis, though himself intending to hold firmly by the doctrine of inspiration and the creed of the church.—What Ernesti did for the N.T., J. D. Michaelis, a.d. 1717-1791, son of the pious and orthodox Chr. Bened. Michaelis, did for the O.T. He was from a.d. 1750 professor at GŚttingen, a man of varied learning and wide influence. He publicly acknowledged that he had never experienced anything of the testimonium Sp. s. internum, and rested his proofs of the divinity of the Scriptures wholly on external evidences, e.g. miracles, prophecy, authenticity, etc., a spider's web easily blown to pieces by the enemy. No one has ever excelled him in the art of foisting his own notions on the sacred authors and making them utter his favourite ideas. A conspicuous instance of this is his “Laws of Moses,” in six vols.—In a far greater measure than either Ernesti or Michaelis did J. Sol. Semler, a.d. 1725-1791, pupil of Baumgarten, and from a.d. 1751 professor at Halle, help on the cause of rationalism. He had grown up under the influence of Halle pietism in the profession of a customary Christianity, which he called his private religion, which contributed to his life a basis of genuine personal piety. But with a rare subtlety of reasoning as a man of science, endowed with rich scholarship, and without any wish to sever himself from Christianity, he undermined almost all the supports of the theology of the church. This he did by casting doubt on the genuineness of the biblical writings, by setting up a theory of inspiration and accommodation [pg 147] which admitted the presence of error, misunderstanding, and pious fraud in the Scriptures, by a style of exposition which put aside everything unattractive in the N.T. as “remnants of Judaism,” by a critical treatment of the history of the church and its doctrines, which represented the doctrines of the church as the result of blundering, misconception, and violence, etc. He was a voluminous author, leaving behind him no less than 171 writings. He sowed the wind, and reaped the whirlwind, by which he himself was driven along. He firmly withstood the installation of Bahrdt at Halle, opposed Basedow's endeavours, applied himself eagerly to refute the “Wolfenbüttel Fragments” of Reimarus, edited by Lessing in 1774-1778, which represented Christianity as founded upon pure deceit and fraud, and defended even the edict of WŚllner. But the current was not thus to be stemmed, and Semler died broken-hearted at the sight of the heavy crop from his own sowing.—J. Gr. TŚllner, a.d. 1724-1774, from a.d. 1756 professor at Frankfort-on-the-Oder, was in point of learning and influence by no means equal to those now named; yet he deserves a place alongside of them, as one who opened the door to rationalism in the department of dogmatics. He himself held fast to the belief in revelation, miracles, and prophecy, but he also regarded it as proved that God saves men by the revelation of nature; the revelation of Scripture is only a more sure and perfect means. He also examined the divine inspiration of Scripture, and found that the language and thoughts were the authors' own, and that God was concerned in it in a manner that could not be more precisely determined. Finally, in treating of the active obedience of Christ, he gives such a representation of it as sets aside the doctrine of the church.
7. The Rationalistic Theology.—From the school of these men, especially from that of Semler, went forth crowds of rationalists, who for seventy years held almost all the professorships and pastorates of Protestant Germany. At their head stands Bahrdt, a.d. 1741-1792, writer at first of orthodox handbooks, who, sinking deeper and deeper through vanity, want of character, and immorality, and following in the steps of Edelmann, wrote 102 vols., mostly of a scurrilous and blasphemous character. The rationalists, however, were generally of a nobler sort: Griesbach of Jena, a.d. 1745-1812, distinguished as textual critic of the N.T.; Teller of Berlin, published a lexicon to the N.T., which substituted “leading another life” for regeneration, “improvement” for sanctification, etc.; Koppe of GŚttingen, and Rosenmüller of Leipzig wrote scholia on N.T., and Schulze and Bauer on the O.T. Of far greater value were the performances of J. E. Eichhorn of GŚttingen, a.d. 1752-1827, and Bertholdt of Erlangen, a.d. 1774-1822, who wrote introductions to the O.T. and commentaries. In the department of church history, H. P. C. Henke of Helmstadt and the talented [pg 148] statesman, Von Spittler of Württemberg, wrote from the rationalistic standpoint. Steinbart and Eberhardt wrote more in the style of the popular philosophy. The subtle-minded J. H. Tieftrunk, a.d. 1760-1837, professor of philosophy at Halle, introduced into theology the Kantian philosophy with its strict categories. Jerusalem, Zollikofer, and others did much to spread rationalistic views by their preaching.76
8. Supernaturalism.—Abandoning the old orthodoxy without surrendering to rationalism, the supernaturalists sought to maintain their hold of the Scripture revelation. Many of them did so in a very uncertain way: their revelation had scarcely anything to reveal which was not already given by reason. Others, however, eagerly sought to preserve all essentially vital truths. Morus of Leipzig, Ernesti's ablest student, Less of GŚttingen, DŚderlein of Jena, Seiler of Erlangen, and NŚsselt of Halle, were all representatives of this school. More powerful opponents of rationalism appeared in Storr of Tübingen, a.d. 1746-1805, who could break a lance even with the philosopher of KŚnigsberg, Knapp of Halle, and Reinhard of Dresden, the most famous preacher of his age. Reinhard's sermon on the Reformation festival of a.d. 1800 created such enthusiasm in favour of the Lutheran doctrine of justification, that government issued an edict calling the attention of all pastors to it as a model. The most distinguished apologists were the mathematician Euler of St. Petersburg, the physiologist, botanist, geologist, and poet Haller of Zürich and the theologians Lilienthal of KŚnigsberg and Kleuker of Kiel. The most zealous defender of the faith was the much abused Goeze of Hamburg, who fought for the palladium of Lutheran orthodoxy against his rationalistic colleagues, against the theatre, against Barth, Basedow, and such-like, against the “Wolfenbüttel Fragments,” against the “Sorrows of Werther,” etc. His polemic may have been over-violent, and he certainly was not a match for such an antagonist as Lessing; he was, however, by no means an obscurantist, ignoramus, fanatic, or hypocrite, but a man in solemn earnest in all he did. In the field of church history important services were rendered by SchrŚckh of Wittenberg and Walch of GŚttingen, laborious investigators and compilers, Stäudlin and Planck of GŚttingen, and Münter of Copenhagen.—Among English theologians of this tendency toward the end of the century, the most famous was Paley of Cambridge, a.d. 1743-1805, whose “Principles of Moral and Political Philosophy” and “Evidences of Christianity” were obligatory text-books in the university. [pg 149] His “Horæ Paulinæ” prove the credibility of the Acts of the Apostles from the epistles, and his “Natural Theology” demonstrates God's being and attributes from nature.
9. Mysticism and Theosophy.—Oetinger of Württemburg, the Magus of the South, a.d. 1702-1782, takes rank by himself. He was a pupil of Bengel (§ 167, 3), well grounded in Scripture, but also an admirer of BŚhme and sympathising with the spiritualistic visions of Swedenborg. But amid all, with his biblical realism and his theosophy, which held corporeity to be the end of the ways of God, he was firmly rooted in the doctrines of Lutheran orthodoxy.—The best mystic of the Reformed church was J. Ph. Dutoit of Lausanne, a.d. 1721-1793, an enthusiastic admirer of Madame Guyon; he added to her quietist mysticism certain theosophical speculations on the original nature of Adam, the creation of woman, the fall, the necessity of the incarnation apart from the fall, the basing of the sinlessness of Christ upon the immaculate conception of his mother, etc. He gathered about him during his lifetime a large number of pious adherents, but after his death his theories were soon forgotten.
10. The German Philosophy.—As Locke accomplished the descent from Bacon to deism and materialism, so Wolff effected the transition from Leibnitz to the popular philosophy. Kant, a.d. 1724-1804, saved philosophy from the baldness and self-sufficiency of Wolffianism, and pointed it to its proper element in the spiritual domain. Kant's own philosophy stood wholly outside of Christianity, on the same platform with rationalistic theology. But by deeper digging in the soil it unearthed many a precious nugget, of whose existence the vulgar rationalism had never dreamed, without any intention of becoming a schoolmaster to lead to Christ. Kant showed the impossibility of a knowledge of the supernatural by means of pure reason, but admitted the ideas of God, freedom, and immortality as postulates of the practical reason and as constituting the principle of all religion, whose only content is the moral law. Christianity and the Bible are to remain the basis of popular instruction, but are to be expounded only in an ethical sense. While in sympathy with rationalism, he admits its baldness and self-sufficiency. His keen criticism of the pure reason, the profound knowledge of human weakness and corruption shown in his doctrine of radical evil, his categorical imperative of the moral law, were well fitted to awaken in more earnest minds a deep distrust of themselves, a modest estimate of the boasted excellences of their age, and a feeling that Christianity could alone meet their necessities.—F. H. Jacobi, a.d. 1743-1819, “with the heart a Christian, with the understanding a pagan,” as he characterized himself, took religion out of the region of mere reason into the depths of the universal feelings of the soul, and so awakened a positive aspiration.—J. G. Fichte, a.d. 1762-1814, transformed [pg 150] Kantianism, to which he at first adhered, into an idealistic science of knowledge, in which only the ego that posits itself appears as real, and the non-ego, only by its being posited by the ego; and thus the world and nature are only a reflex of the mind. But when, accused of atheism in a.d. 1798, he was expelled from his position in Jena, he changed his views, rushing from the verge of atheism into a mysticism approaching to Christianity. In his “Guide to a Blessed Life,” a.d. 1806, he delivered religion from being a mere servant to morals, and sought the blessedness of life in the loving surrender of one's whole being to the universal Spirit, the full expression of which he found in John's Gospel. Pauline Christianity, on the other hand, with its doctrine of sin and redemption, seemed to him a deterioration, and Christ Himself only the most complete representative of the incarnation of God repeated in all ages and in every pious man.—In the closing years of the century, Schelling brought forward his theory of identity, which was one of the most powerful instruments in introducing a new era.77
11. The German National Literature.—When the powerful strain of the evangelical church hymn had well-nigh expired in the feeble lispings of Gellert's sacred poetry, Klopstock began to chant the praises of the Messiah in a higher strain. But the pathos of his odes met with no response, and his “Messiah,” of which the first three cantos appeared in a.d. 1748, though received with unexampled enthusiasm, could do nothing to exorcise the spirit of unbelief, and was more praised than read. The theological standpoint of Lessing, a.d. 1729-1781, is set forth in one of his letters to his brother. “I despise the orthodox even more than you do, only I despise the clergy of the new style even more. What is the new-fashioned theology of those shallow pates compared with orthodoxy but as dung-water compared with dirty water? On this point we are at one, that our old religious system is false; but I cannot say with you that it is a patchwork of bunglers and half philosophers. I know nothing in the world upon which human ingenuity has been more subtly exercised than upon it. That religious system which is now offered in place of the old is a patchwork of bunglers and half philosophers.” He is offended at men hanging the concerns of eternity on the spider's thread of external evidences, and so he was delighted to hurl the Wolfenbüttel “Fragments” at the heads of theologians and the Hamburg pastor Goeze, whom he loaded with contumely and scorn. Thoroughly characteristic too is the saying in the “Duplik”: That if God holding [pg 151] in his right hand all truth, and in his left hand the search after truth, subject to error through all eternity, were to offer him his choice, he would humbly say, “Father the left, for pure truth is indeed for thee alone.” In his “Nathan” only Judaism and Mohammedanism are represented by truly noble and ideal characters, while the chief representative of Christianity is a gloomy zealot, and the conclusion of the parable is that all three rings are counterfeit. In another work he views revelation as one of the stages in “The Education of the Human Race,” which loses its significance as soon as its purpose is served. In familiar conversation with Jacobi he frankly declared his acceptance of the doctrine of Spinoza: Ἕν καὶ πᾶν.78 Wieland, a.d. 1733-1813, soon turned from his youthful zeal for ecclesiastical orthodoxy to the popular philosophy of the cultured man of the world. Herder, a.d. 1744-1803, with his enthusiastic appreciation of the poetical contents of the Bible, especially of the Old Testament, was not slow to point out the insipidity of its ordinary treatment. Goethe, a.d. 1749-1832, profoundly hated the vandalism of neology, delighted in “The Confessions of a Fair Soul” (§ 172, 2), had in earlier years sympathy with the Herrnhuters, but in the full intellectual vigour of his manhood thought he had no need of Christianity, which offended him by its demand for renunciation of self and the world. Schiller, a.d. 1759-1805, enthusiastically admiring everything noble, beautiful and good, misunderstood Christianity, and introduced into the hearts of the German people Kantian rationalism clothed in rich poetic garb. His lament on the downfall of the gods of Greece, even if not so intended by the poet himself, told not so much against orthodox Christianity as against poverty-stricken deism, which banished the God of Christianity from the world and set in his place the dead forces of nature. And if indeed he really thought that for religion's sake he should confess to no religion, he has certainly in many profoundly Christian utterances given unconscious testimony to Christianity.—The Jacobi philosophy of feeling found poetic interpreters in Jean Paul Richter, a.d. 1763-1825, and Hebel, died a.d. 1826, in whom we find the same combination of pious sentiment which is drawn toward Christianity and the sceptical understanding which allied itself to the revolt against the common orthodoxy. J. H. Voss, a rough, powerful Dutch peasant, who in his “Luise” sketched the ideal of a brave rationalistic country parson, and, with the inexorable [pg 152] rigour of an inquisitor, hunted down the night birds of ignorance and oppression. But alongside of those children of the world stood two genuine sons of Luther, Matthias Claudius, a.d. 1740-1815, and J. G. Hamann, a.d. 1730-1788, the “Magus of the North” and the Elijah of his age, of whom Jean Paul said that his commas were planetary systems and his periods solar systems, to whom the philosopher Hemsterhuis erected in the garden of Princess Gallitzin a tablet with the inscription: “To the Jews a stumbling-block, to the Greeks foolishness.” With them may also be named two noble sons of the Reformed church, the physiognomist Lavater, a.d. 1741-1801, and the devout dreamer, Jung-Stilling, a.d. 1740-1817. The famous historian, John von Müller, a.d. 1752-1809, well deserves mention here, who more than any previous historian made Christ the centre and summit of all times; and also the no less famous statesman C. F. von Moser, the most German of the Germans of this century, who, with noble Christian heroism, in numerous political and patriotic tracts, battled against the prevailing social and political vices of his age.
12. The great Swiss educationist Pestalozzi, a.d. 1746-1827, assumed toward the Bible, the church, and Christianity an attitude similar to that of the philosopher of KŚnigsberg. The conviction of the necessity and wholesomeness of a biblical foundation in all popular education was rooted in his heart, and he clearly saw the shallowness of the popular philosophy, whether presented under the eccentric naturalism of Rousseau or the bald utilitarianism of Basedow. His whole life issued from the very sanctuary of true Christianity, as seen in his self-sacrificing efforts to save the lost, to strengthen the weak, and to preach to the poor by word and deed the gospel of the all-merciful God whose will it is that all should be saved. He began his career as an educationist in a.d. 1775 by receiving into his house deserted beggar children, and carried on his experiments in his educational institutions at Burgdorf till a.d. 1798, and at Isserten till a.d. 1804. His writings, which circulated far and wide, gained for his methods recognition and high approval.79
The ancient faith of the church had even during this age of prevailing unbelief its seven thousand who refused to bow [pg 153] the knee to Baal. The German people were at heart firmly grounded in the Christianity of the Bible and the church, and where the pulpit failed had their spiritual wants supplied by the devout writings of earlier days. Where the modern vandalism of the “Illumination” had mutilated and watered down the books of praise, the old church songs lingered in the memories of fathers and mothers, and were sung with ardour at family worship. For many men of culture, who were more exposed to danger, the Society of the Brethren afforded a welcome refuge. But even among the most accomplished of the nation many stood firmly in the old paths. Lavater and Stilling, Haller and Euler, the two Mosers, father and son, John von Müller and his brother J. G. Müller, are not by any means the only, but merely the best known, of such true sons of the church. In Württemberg and Berg, where religious life was most vigorous, religious sects were formed with new theological views which made a deep impression on the character and habits of the people. Also toward the end of the century an awakened zeal in home and foreign missions was the prelude of the glorious enterprises of our own days.
1. The Hymnbook and Church Music.—Klopstock, followed by Cramer and Schlegel, introduced the vandalism of altering the old church hymns to suit modern tastes and views. But a few, like Herder and Schubert, raised their voices against such philistinism. The “Illuminist” alterations were unutterably prosaic, and the old pathos and poetry of the sixteenth and seventeenth century hymns were ruthlessly sacrificed. The spiritual songs of the noble and pious Gellert are by far the best productions of this period.—Church Music too now reached its lowest ebb. The old chorales were altered into modern forms. A multitude of new, unpopular melodies, difficult of comprehension, with a bald school tone, were introduced; the last trace of the old rhythm disappeared, and a weary monotony began to prevail, in which all force and freshness were lost. As a substitute, secular preludes, interludes, and concluding pieces were brought in. The people often entered the churches during the playing of operatic overtures, and were dismissed amid the noise of a march or waltz. [pg 154] The church ceased to be the patron and promoter of music; the theatre and concert room took its place. The opera style thoroughly depraved the oratorio. For festival occasions, cantatas in a purely secular, effeminate style were composed. A true ecclesiastical music no longer existed, so that even Winterfeld closed his history of church music with Seb. Bach. It was, if possible, still worse with the mass music of the Roman Catholic church. Palestrina's earnest and capable school was completely lost sight of under the sprightly and frivolous opera style, and with the organ still more mischief was done than in the Protestant church.
2. Religious Characters.—The pastor of Ban de la Roche in Steinthal of Alsace, “the saint of the Protestant church,” J. Fr. Oberlin, a.d. 1740-1826, deserves a high place of honour. During a sixty years' pastorate “Father Oberlin” raised his poverty-stricken flock to a position of industrial prosperity, and changed the barren Steinthal into a patriarchal paradise. The same may be said of a noble Christian woman of that age, Sus. Cath. von Klettenberg, Lavater's “Cordata,” Goethe's “Fair Soul,” whose genuine confessions are wrought into “Wilhelm Meister” the centre of a beautiful Christian circle in Frankfort, where the young Goethe received religious impressions that were never wholly forgotten.—Community of religious yearnings brought together pious Protestants and pious Catholics. The Princess von Gallitzin, her chaplain Overberg, and minister Von Fürstenberg formed a noble group of earnest Catholics, for whom the ardent Lutheran Hamann entertained the warmest affection.
3. Religious Sects.—In Württemberg there arose out of the pietism of Spener, with a dash of the theosophy of Oetinger, the party of the Michelians, so named from a layman, Michael Hahn, whose writings show profound insight into the truths of the gospel. He taught the doctrine of a double fall, in consequence of which he depreciated though he did not forbid marriage; of a restitution of all things; while he subordinated justification to sanctification, the Christ for us to the Christ in us, etc. As a reaction against this extreme arose the Pregizerians, who laid exclusive stress upon baptism and justification, declared assurance and heart-breaking penitence unnecessary, and imparted to their services as much brightness and joy as possible. Both sects spread over Württemberg and still exist, but in their common opposition to the destructive tendencies of modern times, they have drawn more closely together. In their chiliasm and restitutionism they are thoroughly agreed.—The Collenbuschians in Canton Berg propounded a dogmatic system in which Christ empties Himself of His divine attributes, and assumes with sinful flesh the tendencies to sin that had to be fought against, the sufferings of Christ are attributed to the wrath of Satan, and His redemption consists in His overcoming [pg 155] Satan's wrath for us and imparting His Spirit to enable us to do works of holiness. The most distinguished adherents of Collenbusch were the two Hasencamps and the talented Bremen pastor Menken.
4. The Rationalistic “Illumination” outside of Germany.—In Amsterdam, in a.d. 1791, a Restored Lutheran Church or Old Light was organized on the occasion of the intrusion of a rationalistic pastor. It now numbers eight Dutch congregations with 14,000 adherents and 11 pastors. Under the name of Christo Sacrum some members of the French Reformed church at Delft, in a.d. 1797, founded a denomination which received adherents of all confessions, holding by the divinity of Christ and His atonement, and treating all confessional differences as non-essential and to be held only as private opinions. In their public services they adopted mainly the forms of the Anglican episcopal church. Though successful at first, it soon became rent by the incongruity of its elements. In England the dissenters and Methodists provided a healthy protest against the lukewarmness of the State church. In William Cowper, a.d. 1731-1800, we have a noble and brilliant poet of high lyrical genius, whose life was blasted by the terrorism of a predestinarian doctrine of despair and the religious melancholy produced by Methodistic agonies of soul.
5. Missionary Societies and Missionary Enterprise.—In order to arouse interest in the idea of a grand union for practical Christian purposes, the Augsburg elder, John Urlsperger, travelled through England, Holland, and Germany. The Basel Society for Spreading Christian Truth, founded in a.d. 1780, was the first-fruits of his zeal, and branches were soon established throughout Switzerland and Southern Germany. The Basel Bible Society was founded in a.d. 1804, and the Missionary Society in a.d. 1816.—At a meeting of English Baptist preachers at Kettering, in Northamptonshire, in a.d. 1792, William Carey was the means of starting the Baptist Missionary Society. Carey was himself its first missionary. He sailed for India in a.d. 1793, and founded the Serampore Mission in Bengal. The work of the society has now spread over the East and West Indies, the Malay Archipelago, South Africa, and South America. A popular preacher, Melville Horne, who had been himself in India, published “Letters on Missions,” in a.d. 1794, in which he earnestly counselled a union of all true Christians for the conversion of the heathen. In response to this appeal a large number of Christians of all denominations, mostly Independents, founded in a.d. 1795, the London Missionary Society, and in the following year the first missionary ship, The Duff, under Captain Wilson, sailed for the South Seas with twenty-nine missionaries on board. Its operations now extend to both Indies, South Africa, and North America; but its chief hold is in the South Seas. In the Society Islands the missionaries wrought for sixteen years without any apparent result, till at last [pg 156] King Pomare II. of Tahiti sought baptism as the first-fruits of their labours. A victory gained over a pagan reactionary party in a.d. 1815 secured complete ascendency to Christianity. The example of the London Society was followed by the founding of two Scottish societies in a.d. 1796 and a Dutch society in a.d. 1797, and the Church Missionary Society in London in a.d. 1799, for the English possessions in Africa, Asia, etc. The Danish Lutheran (§ 167, 9) and the Herrnhut (§ 168, 11) societies still continued their operations.80—Continuation, §§ 183, 184.
A reaction had set in against the atheistic spirit of the French Revolution, and the victories of a.d. 1813, 1815, encouraged the pious in their Christian confidence. Princes and people were full of gratitude to God. Alexander I., Francis I., and Frederick William III., representing the three principal churches, in a.d. 1815, after the political situation had been determined by the Congress of Vienna, formed “the Holy Alliance,” a league of brotherly love for mutual defence and maintenance of peace, to which all the European princes adhered with the exception of the pope, the sultan, and the king of England. Through Metternich's arts it ultimately degenerated into an instrument of repression and tyranny.—Incongruous elements were present everywhere. The restoration of the papacy in a.d. 1814 had given a new impulse to ultramontanism, as did also the Reformation centenary of a.d. 1817 to Protestantism; while supernaturalism and pietism prevailing in the Lutheran and Reformed churches led to renewed attempts at union. Old sects were strengthened and new sects arose. Pantheism, materialism, and atheism, as well as socialism and communism, without concealment attacked Christianity; while pauperism and vagabondage, on the one hand, and the Stock Exchange swindling of capitalists, on the other, spread moral consumption through all classes of society. The ultramontanes, led by the Jesuits, reasserted the most arrogant claims of the papacy. The climax was reached when Pius IX. obtained a decree of council affirming his infallibility, while by the Nemesis of history the royal crown was torn from his head.
Down to a.d. 1840, when zeal for it began to abate, philosophy exercised an important influence on the religious development of the age, both in the departments of science and of life. While rationalism was not able to transcend the standpoint of Kant, the other theological tendencies were more or less determined formally, and even materially by the philosophical movements of this period. Alongside of philosophy, literature, itself to a great extent coloured by contemporary philosophy, exerted a powerful influence on the religious opinions of the more cultured among the people. The sciences, too, came into closer relations, partly friendly, partly hostile, to Christianity; and art in some of its masterpieces paid a noble tribute to the church.
1. The German Philosophy (§ 170, 10).—Fries, whose philosophy was Kantian rationalism, modified by elements borrowed from Jacobi, influenced such theologians as De Wette. Schelling, in his “Philosophy of Identity,” had advanced from Fichte's idealism to a pantheistic naturalism. From Fichte he had learned that this world is nothing without spirit; but while Fichte recognised this world, the non-ego, as reality only in so far as man seizes upon it and penetrates it by his spirit, and so raises it into real being, Schelling regards spirit as nothing else than the life of nature itself. In the lower stages of this nature-life spirit is still slumbering and dreaming, but in man it has attained unto consciousness. The nature-life as a whole, or the world-soul, is God; man is the reflex of God and the world in miniature, a microcosmos. In the world's development God comes into objective being and unfolds his self-consciousness; Christianity is the turning point in the world's history; its fundamental dogmas of revelation, trinity, incarnation, and redemption are suggestive attempts to solve the world's riddle. Schelling's poetic view of the world penetrated all the sciences, and gave to them a new impulse. Though hateful to the old rationalists, this system found ardent admirers among the younger theologians. As Schelling to Fichte, so Hegel was attached to Schelling, and wrought his pantheistic naturalism into a pantheistic spiritualism. Not so much in the life of nature as in the thinking and doing of the human spirit, [pg 159] the divine revelation is the unfolding of the divine self-consciousness from non-being into being. Judaism and Christianity are progressive stages of this process; Judaism stands far below classic paganism; but in Christianity we have the perfect religion, to be developed into the highest form of philosophy. The Protestant church doctrine was now again accorded the place of honour. Marheincke developed Lutheran orthodoxy into a system of speculative theology based on Hegelian principles; while GŚschel infused into it a pietist spirit, which made many hail the new departure as the long-sought reconciliation of theology and philosophy. But after Hegel's death in a.d. 1831 the condition of matters suddenly changed. His school split into an orthodox wing following the master's ecclesiastical tendencies, and a heterodox wing which deified the human spirit. Strauss, Bauer, and Feuerbach led this heterodox party in theology, and Ruge in reference to social, æsthetic, and political questions. Persecuted by the state in a.d. 1843, the Young Hegelians joined the rationalists, whom they had before sneered at as “antediluvian theologians.” Schelling, who had been silent for almost thirty years, took Hegel's chair in Berlin as his decided opponent in a.d. 1841, and with his dualistic doctrine of potencies, from which he finally advanced to a Christian gnosticism, obtained a temporary influence among the younger theologians. He died at the baths of Ragaz in Switzerland in a.d. 1854. He flashed for a moment like a meteor, and as suddenly his light was quenched.
2. The domination of the Hegelian philosophy was overthrown by the split in the school and the radicalism of the adherents of the left wing, and Schelling in the second stage of his philosophical development had not succeeded in founding any proper school of his own. A group of younger philosophers, with I. H. Fichte at their head, starting from the Hegelian dialectic, have striven to free philosophy from the reproach of pantheism and to develop a speculative theism in touch with historical Christianity. Other members of this school are Weisse, Braniss, Chalibæus, Ulrici, Wirth, Romang, etc.—Herbart renounces all that philosophers from Fichte senior to Fichte junior had done, and declares the metaphysical end of their systems beyond the horizon of philosophy, which must limit itself to the province of experience. His realism is in diametrical opposition to Hegel's idealism. Toward Christianity his philosophy occupies a position of indifference. Influenced by Kant's theory of knowledge as well as by the Fichte-Schelling-Hegel idealism and Herbart's realism, with an infusion of Leibnitz's monad doctrine, Hermann Lotze of GŚttingen has, since a.d. 1844, set forth a system of “teleological idealism.” He develops his metaphysical principles from what we have by immediate experience internal and external, and the invariability [pg 160] of the causal mechanism in everything that happens in the inner and outer world he explains as the realizing of moral purposes.—Schopenhauer's philosophy, which only in the later years of his life (died a.d. 1860) began to attract attention, is in spirit utterly opposed to the religion and ethics of Christianity. Its task is to describe “The World as Will and Idea”; first at that stage of entering into visibility which is represented in man does will, the thing-in-itself, become joined with idea, and makes its appearance now with it over against the world as a conscious subject. But since idea is regarded as a pure illusion of the will, this leads to a pessimism which takes absolute despair as the only legitimate moral principle. E. von Hartmann went still further in the same direction in his “Philosophy of the Unconscious,” published in 1869, of which an English translation in three vols. appeared in 1884. He identifies the will with matter and idea with spirit, demands in addition to the absolute despair of the individual here and hereafter, the complete surrender of the personality to the world-process in order to the attainment of its end, the annihilation of the world. This dissolution of the world consists in the complete withdrawal of the will into the absolute as the only unconscious, so that at last the wrong and misery of being produced by the irrational will are abolished in this withdrawal. From this philosophical standpoint Hartmann attempted in a.d. 1874 to take Christianity to pieces, showing some favour to Vatican Catholicism, but pouring out the vials of his wrath upon Protestantism. His “religion of the future” consists in a yearning for freedom from all the burden and misery of being and share in the world-process by relapsing into the blessedness of non-being.—In France, England, and America much favour has been shown to the atheistic-sensual Positivism of Aug. Comte, which, excluding every form of theology and morals, requires only the so-called exact sciences as the object of philosophy. On his later notions of a “religion of humanity,” see § 210, 1. On essentially similar lines proceeds Herbert Spencer, in his “System of Synthetic Philosophy,” to whose school also Darwin belonged. His followers are styled agnostics, because they regard all knowledge of God and divine things as absolutely impossible, and evolutionists, because their master endeavours to construct all the sciences on the basis of the evolution theory.
3. The Sciences.—Schelling's profound theories were of all the more significance from their not being restricted to the philosophical strivings of his time, but inspiring the other sciences with the breath of a new life. To the fullest extent the natural sciences exposed themselves to this influence. There was not wanting indeed a certain shadowy mysticism, to which especially the fancies of mesmeric [pg 161] magnetism largely contributed; but this fog gradually cleared away, and the Christian elements were purified from their pantheistic surroundings. Steffens and Von Schubert taught that the divine book of nature is to be regarded as the reflex and expansion of the divine revelation in Scripture. The Hegelian philosophy, too, seemed at first likely to infuse a Christian spirit into the other sciences. In GŚschel, at least, there was a thinker who imparted to jurisprudence a Christian character, and to Christianity a juristic construction. In other respects Hegel's philosophy in its application to the other departments of science gave in many ways a predominance to an abstruse dialectic tendency. Its adherents of the extreme left sought to construct all sciences a priori from the pure idea, and at the same time to root out from them the last vestiges of the Christian spirit.
The greatest names in natural science, Copernicus, Kepler, Newton, Haller, Davy, Cuvier, etc., are household words in Christian circles. All these and many more were firmly convinced that there was no conflict between their most brilliant discoveries and Christian truth. In a.d. 1825 the Earl of Bridgwater founded a lectureship, and treatises on the power, wisdom, and goodness of God as manifested in the creation, have been written by Buckland, Chalmers, Whewell, Bell, etc. It was otherwise in Germany. Even Schleiermacher, in his “Letters to Lücke,” in a.d. 1829, expressed his fears of the prophesied overthrow of all Christian theories of the world by the incontrovertible results of physical research, and Bretschneider in his “Letters to a Statesman,” in a.d. 1830, proclaimed to the world without regret that already what Schleiermacher only feared had actually come to pass. Physicists, awakening from the glamour of the Schelling nature philosophy, pronounced all speculation contraband, and declared pure empiricism, the simple investigation of actual things, the only permissible object of their labour. And although they handed over to theologians and philosophers questions about spirit in and over nature, as not belonging to their province, a younger generation maintained that spirit was non-existent, because it could not be discovered by the microscope and dissecting knife. Carl Vogt defined thought to be a secretion of the brain, and Moleschott regarded life as a mere mode of matter and man's existence after life only as the manuring of the fields. Feuerbach proclaimed that “man is what he eats,” and Buchner popularized these views into a gospel for social democrats and nihilists. Oersted, the famous discoverer of electro-magnetism, had sought “the spirit in nature,” but the spirit which he found was not that of the Bible and the church. The grandmaster of German scientific research, Alex. von Humboldt, saw in the world a cosmos of noble harmony as a whole and in its [pg 162] parts, but of Christian ideas in God's great book of nature he finds no trace. In a.d. 1859 the great English naturalist Darwin, died a.d. 1882, introduced into the arena the theory of “Natural Selection,” by means of which the modification and development of the few primary animal forms through the struggle for existence and the survival of the fittest by sexual selection is supposed, in millions, perhaps milliards, of years, to have brought forth the present variety and manifoldness of animal species. Multitudes of naturalists now accept his theory of the descent of men and apes from a common stem.—In Medicine De Valenti on the Protestant side, with pietistic earnestness, maintains that Christian faith is a vehicle of healing power; while a circle in Munich on the Catholic side make worship of saints and the host a conditio sine qua non of all medicine. A more moderate attitude is assumed by the Roman Catholic Dr. Capellmann of Aachen, in his “Pastoral Medicine.”
4. Of Christian Jurists we have, on the Protestant side, Stahl, Savigny, Puchta, Jacobson, Richter, Meier, Scheuerl, Hinschius, etc.; and on the Catholic side, Walther, Philipps, etc. Among Historians, the greatest in modern times is Leopold von Ranke, who, with his disciples, occupies a thoroughly Christian standpoint. There has appeared, however, on the part of many Protestant historians, such as Voigt, Leo, Mentzel, Vorreiter, Hurter, Gfroerer, etc., a tendency in the most conspicuous manner to recognise and admire the brilliant phenomena of mediæval Catholicism, even going to the length of renouncing the vital principles of Protestantism, and glorifying a Boniface, a Gregory VII., and an Innocent III., and characterizing the Reformation as a revolution. Ultramontanes have been only too ready to turn to their own use all such concessions, but show no inclination to make similar admissions damaging to their side, so that with them history consists rather in the abuse of everything Protestant as vile and perfidious, instead of being a record of independent research. Janssen of Frankfort stands out prominently above the billows of the “Kulturkampf” (§ 197), as the greatest master of this ultramontane style of history making.—Geography, first raised to the rank of a science by Carl Ritter, received from its great founder a Christian impress and owes much of its development to the researches of Christian missionaries. Finally, Philology, in the hands of Creuzer, GŚrres, Sepp, etc., unfolds in a Christian spirit the religion and mythology of classical paganism; and in the hands of Nägelsbach and Lübker expounds the religious life of the ancient world in relation to Christian truth.
5. National Literature (§ 171, 11).—To some extent Goethe, but much more decidedly the romantic school of poets, was attached to Schelling's philosophy of nature. The romanticists developed a deep [pg 163] religiousness of feeling, as shown in Novalis and La Motte Fouqué, and violent opposition to rationalistic theology as shown in Tieck, which in the case of Fr. Schlegel ran to the other extreme of moral frivolity as seen in his “Lucinde.” The romantic school as thus represented by Schlegel was joined by the party of Young Germany with its gospel of the rehabilitation of the flesh. Its mouthpiece was the gifted poet Heine. The pantheistic deification of nature by Schelling, and the self-deification of the Hegelian school obtained poetic expression in Leop. Schafer's Laienbrevier und Weltpriester, as well as in Sallet's Laienevangelium; while the sympathies of the young Hegelians with the revolutionary movements gained utterance in the poems of Herwegh, and in a more serious tone in those of Freiligrath. More recently the views of the Protestantenverein (§ 180) have found their poetical representative in Nic. Eichhorn, whose “Jesus of Nazareth,” a tragical drama, 1880, deals with the life, works, and sufferings of the “historical Christ,” after the style of free Protestant science, with rich psychological analysis of the character in a brilliant imaginative production. Though composed with a view to theatrical representation, it has never yet been put on the stage.
6. The Christian element was present in the noble patriotic songs of E. M. Arndt81 and Max. von Schenkendorf much more distinctly than in the romantic school. Enthusiasm in the struggle for freedom awakened faith in the living God. Uhland's lovely lyrics, with their enthusiasm for the present interests of the Fatherland, entitle him to rank among patriotic poets, and their brilliant and profound rendering of the old German legends places him in the romantic school, which, however, in clearness and depth he leaves far behind. Without being a distinctively Christian poet, his warm sympathy with the life of the German people gives him a genuine interest in the Christian religion. The same may be said of Rückert's highly finished poems, which transplanted the fragrant flowers of oriental sensuousness and contemplativeness into the garden of German poetry. A more decided Christian consecration of poetic genius is seen in the noble and beautiful lyrics of Emanuel Geibel, died 1884, the greatest and most Christian of the secular poets of the present. Of those ordinarily ranked as sacred poets may be named Knapp, DŚring, Spitta, Garve, Vict. Strauss, etc., who for the most part contributed their sacred songs to Knapp's “Christoterpe” (1833-1853). A later publication of equal merit, called the “Neue Christoterpe,” has been edited since 1880 by KŚgel, Baur, and Frommel. But with all the Christian depth and spirituality, freshness and warmth, which we meet with in the productions of these Christian poets, none of them [pg 164] has been able to rise to the noble simplicity, power, popular force, and fitting them for church use, objectivity which are present in the old evangelical church hymns. In this respect they all bear too conspicuously the signature of their age, with its subjective tone and the noise and turmoil of present conflicts. Of all modern poets, Rückert alone approaches in his advent hymn the measure and spirit of the old church song.—In the department of novels and romance there has been shown an almost invariable hostility toward Christianity, religion being either entirely avoided or held up to contempt by having as its representatives, simpletons, hypocrites, or knaves.
7. In France, Chateaubriand in his “Genie du Christianisme” pronounces an eloquent eulogy on the half-pagan Christianity of the Middle Ages. In another work he makes the representatives of heathenism in the age of Constantine act like Homeric heroes, and those of Christianity speak “like theologians of the age of Bossuet.” Lamartine may be described as a Christian romanticist. Victor Hugo, Balzac, George Sand, Sue, Dumas, etc., influenced by the Revolution, developed an antichristian tendency; while naked naturalism, photographic realism in depicting the lowest side of Parisian life, especially adultery and prostitution, is represented by Flaubert, Daudet, De Goncourt, Zola, etc.—In Italy, the amiable Manzoni gave noble expression to Christian feeling in his “Inni Sacri,” and in his masterly romance “Promessi Sposi”; and the famous poet Silvio Pellico, in his “La mia Prigioni,” affords a noble example of the sustaining power of true religion during ten years' rigorous imprisonment in an Austrian dungeon. The most gifted of modern Italian poets, Giacomo Leopardi, sank into despairing pessimism, which expressed itself in the domain of religion in biting satire and savage irony. Among the poets of the present who, with glowing patriotism, not only yearned for the deliverance and unity of Italy, but also lived to see these accomplished, and have since given expression, though from different political and religious standpoints, to the desire for the reconciliation of the free united kingdom with the irreconcilable church, the most distinguished, are Aleardi, Carducci, Imbriani, Guercini, Cavalotti.—In Spain, Caecilia BŚhl von Faber, although the daughter of a German father, and educated in Germany, introduced, under the name Fernan Caballero, the modern romance in a thoroughly national Spanish style, and in a purely moral and catholic Christian spirit. In the Flemish Provinces, Hendrik Conscience, the able novelist, has described Flemish village life in a spirit fully in sympathy with Christianity.—England had in Lord Byron a poet of the first rank, who more than any other poet had experience in himself of the convulsions and contradictions of his age. In powerful and impressive tones he sets forth the unreconciled disharmonies of nature and of [pg 165] human life. Incurable pain, despair, weariness of life, and hatred of mankind, without hope, yet without desire for reconciliation, enthusiastic admiration of the ancient world, passionate love of liberty and titanic pride in human might mingle with scenes of grumbling, misery, and profligacy. On the other hand, the rich and mostly solid English novel literature is prevailingly inspired by a Christian spirit.
8. Popular Education.—While the poetic national literature for the most part found entrance only among the cultured and adult circles, this age, almost as fond of writing as of reading, produced an enormous quantity of books for the people and for children. But only a few succeeded in catching the proper tone for the masses and the youth, and still fewer supplied their readers with what was genuinely pious. Pestalozzi's “Lienhard und Gertrud,” Hebel's “Schatzkästlein,” and Tschokke's “Goldmacherdorf,” respected at least the Christian feeling of the people, although they did not strengthen or foster it. But, on the other hand, in recent years a number of writers have appeared, thoroughly popular, and at the same time thoroughly Christian, who, as popular poets and novelists, have become apostles of Christian views, morals, and customs to the people. The most distinguished of these are Jeremiah Gotthelf (Albert Bitzius, died 1854), whose “Kate the Grandmother” was translated in the Sunday Magazine for 1865, Von Horn, Carl StŚber, Wildenhahn, Nathusius, Frommel, Weitbrecht, etc. In the Catholic church Albanus Stoltz, died 1883, developed a wonderful power of popular composition, which, however, he subsequently put at the service of a fanatical ultramontanism, and so sacrificed much of its nobility and worth. From the enormous mass of children's books only extremely few attain their aim. In the front rank stands the brilliant patriarch of Christian tale writing, Von Schubert, died 1860. After him are Barth, the author of “Poor Henry,” StŚber, and the Swiss Spyri, and the Catholic Christian Schmid, author of the “Easter Eggs.”—The Public Schools, especially under Dinter (died 1831), member of the consistory and schoolboard of KŚnigsberg, were for a long time nurseries of the tame, flat, and self-satisfied rationalism of the ancien régime; but since 1830, and more particularly in consequence of the violent agitations of the seminary director Diesterweg, who died in 1866, put to silence in 1847, but still for his work in connexion with education always highly respected, many of the teachers took a higher flight in the naturalistic-democratic direction. By word and pen Diesterweg carried on a propaganda in favour of a free and liberal education for the people. His disciples, wanting his earnest Christian spirit, carried out recklessly his radical tendencies, and now the Christian faith has no more persistent foes than the teachers of the public schools. In a.d. 1870, a Teachers' Association in Vienna gave a vote of 6,000 in [pg 166] favour of radicalism. At a Hamburg meeting in a.d. 1872 of 5,100 teachers, progress was shown by individuals raising their voices in defence of Christianity, which, however, were generally drowned in shrieks and hisses. A Teachers' Evangelical Association held its ninth assembly at Hamburg in a.d. 1881 with 1,500 members. Christian opinions are now ably represented in schools, educational journals, and literature. A burning question at present is whether the national school should be preferred to the denominational school. Liberals in church and state say it should; conservatives say it should not; while both parties think their views supported by the experience of the past. The Prussian minister of education, Falk, a.d. 1872-1879, firmly insisted upon the development of the national system, but his successors Von Puttkamer and Von Gossler reverted to the denominational system. The German Evangelical School Congress of Hamburg in October, 1882, demanded that both elementary and secondary schools should have a confessional character.
9. Art.—The intellectual quickening called forth with the opening of the new century imparted new spirit and life to the cultivation of the arts. Winckelmann, died a.d. 1768, had opened the way to an understanding of pagan classical art, and romanticism awakened appreciation of and enthusiasm for mediæval Christian art. The greatest masters of Architecture were Schinckel, Klenze, and Heideloff. The foundation stone of the final part of the Cologne cathedral was laid by a Protestant king, Frederick William IV., in a.d. 1842, and the work was finished by a Protestant builder in a.d. 1880. Statuary had three great masters, who gave expression to profound Christian ideas in bronze and marble, the Italian Canova, the German Dannecker, and greatest of all, the Dane Thorwaldsen, whose Christ and the Apostles and other works form a main attraction to visitors in Copenhagen. Three younger German masters of the art, who have heired their fame, are Rauch, Rietschl, and Drake.—In Painting too a new era now began. A group of gay German artists in Rome, with Overbeck at their head, formed a Society in a.d. 1813, and mostly became perverts to Romanism. Peter Cornelius, the ablest of the school, himself born a Catholic, answered his friends' request to place Luther in a picture of the last judgment, in hell: “Yes, but with the Bible in his hands and the devils trembling before him;” and in a subsequent picture of the judgment, he gave the German reformer his place among the saints in heaven. His pupil, Julius Schnorr von Karolsfeld is well known by his “Bibel in Bildern.” Ludwig Richter, the Albert Dürer of the nineteenth century and creator of the modern woodcut, has filled German houses with his artistic and poetic creations, which breathe of God, nature, and the family fireside. The Frenchman, Gustave Doré of Strassburg, has also illustrated the [pg 167] Bible in a manner worthy of ranking alongside of Schnorr, though a characteristically French striving for effect is everywhere discernible.—Painted Glass (§ 104, 14) for church windows had during the eighteenth century passed almost wholly out of use, but again in the nineteenth came into favour, and was made at Dresden, Nuremberg, and Munich. The most eminent artist in this department was Ainmiller of Munich, specimens of whose workmanship are to be seen in all parts of the world.
10. Music and the Drama.—In Vienna the three great masters of musical composition, Mozart, Haydn, and Beethoven, produced in the department of sacred music some of their noblest works. Mendelssohn, in his St. Paul and Elijah and in his Psalms, sought to reproduce the power and truth of the simple word of God. An early death prevented him giving expression to his ideal of Christ in music. The Hungarian virtuoso Liszt sacrifices sacred calmness and dignity to theatrical effect. His son-in-law, Richard Wagner, inspired by Schopenhauer's philosophy, a richly endowed poet and composer, proclaimed by his followers as the Messiah of the music of the future, going back to mediæval legend, has produced a quasi-Christian musical drama, in which the gospel of pessimism takes the place of the gospel of the grace of God.—Quite different is the Passion Play of the Bavarian village Oberammergau, which is a reproduction of the mediæval mysteries (§ 115, 12). It originated in a vow made in 1633 on the occasion of a plague which visited the place, and is repeated every ten years on the Sundays from the end of May to the middle of September. The history of the Saviour's passion is here represented with interludes from Messianic Old Testament passages explained by a chorus like that of the classical tragedy, with appropriate scenery, drapery, and musical accompaniment. In the presence of an immense concourse of strangers for whose accommodation a large amphitheatre was been built, almost all the villagers, men, women, and children, take part in the performance and show rare artistic power. The text of the drama for the most part agrees with the gospel narrative, only occasionally interspersed with legend, and quite free from ultramontane hagiology and mariolatry. The performance of a.d. 1850, and still more that of a.d. 1880, attracted crowds of pilgrims and tourists to the quiet and remote valley. An independent exhibition, falling little behind the original in the artistic character of its composition and production, was given, in 1883, on the Sundays of July and August in the Tyrolese village of Brixlegg, and was visited by similar crowds.
Protestants could recognise, as Catholics could not, elements of truth and beauty in the creeds of their opponents. When a peaceful and conciliatory spirit was shown by individual Catholic clergymen, it was the occasion of suspicion and persecution on the part of the old Romish party. Schemes of union were entertained by the Old Catholics (§ 190), and negotiations were entered on by the Greek Orthodox church, on the one hand, and the Roman Catholic and Anglican churches, on the other, but in both cases without any practical result. On the union negotiations between the different Protestant sects, see § 178; and on the Prusso-Anglican bishopric of Jerusalem, see § 184, 8. Of the numerous conversions from Protestantism to Catholicism and from Catholicism to Protestantism, we can here mention only such as have excited public interest in some special way.
1. Romanizing Tendencies among Protestants.—Not only in England, where an important high-church party embraced a more than half-Catholic Puseyism (§ 202, 2), but even in Protestant Germany a Romanizing current set in on many sides. A taste for the romantic, artistic, historical (§ 174, 5, 9, 4), as well as feudalist-aristocratic and hyper-Lutheran ecclesiastical tendencies led the way in this direction. Many sought rest in the bosom of the church “where alone salvation is found,” while others, too deeply rooted in evangelical truth, bewailed the loss of “noble and venerable” institutions in the worship, life, and constitution of the church, but were unable to accept the various unevangelical accretions which made void the doctrine of justification by faith alone. This was the position of LŚhe of Neuendettelsau, in point of doctrine a strict Lutheran, who published a selection of Catholic legends as patterns of self-denial for his deaconesses, wished to restore anointing of the sick, etc. Some Protestant pastors expressed warm sympathy with the Pope during his misfortunes in a.d. 1860, and approved of the continuance of the papacy and the pope's temporal dominion. A conference of Catholics (Count Stolberg, Dr. Michelis, etc.) and Protestants (Leo, Bindewald, etc.) at Erfurt in a.d. 1860, on the basis of a common recognition of the moral [pg 169] advantages of the papacy, sought to bring about a union of the churches. Still more remarkable is the story told by the Old Catholic professor Friedrich. Just before the opening of the Vatican Council, certain evangelical pastors of Saxony wrote letters to Bishop Martin of Paderborn, which Friedrich himself read, urging that at the council permission should be given to priests to marry and to give the cup in the communion to the laity, and promising that in that case they themselves and many like-minded pastors would join the Romish church. That the letters were written and received is unquestionable; but it is doubtful whether folly and imbecility or a wish to hoax and mystify, directed the pen. The writer or writers, as the examination before the consistory of the locality proved, are not to be sought among the pastors whose names are appended. How far the Protestant ultra-conservative reactionary party goes with the ultramontanes and how far it would aid the overthrow and undermining of the Protestant state and evangelical church, is shown by the conduct of the Privy Councillor and Chief Justice Ludwig von Gerlach (§ 176, 1), who, in 1872, in the Prussian House of Representatives, took his place among the ultramontane party of the centre, hostile to the empire and friendly to the Poles, and in his pamphlet “Kaiser und Papst” of 1872 described the new German empire as an incarnate antichrist. Also the Lutheran Guelphs of Hanover are zealous supporters of all the demands of the centre in the Prussian parliament and in the German Reichstag.
2. The Attitude of Catholicism toward Protestantism.—Every Catholic bishop has still on assuming office to take the oath, Hæreticos pro posse persequar. The Jesuits, restored in a.d. 1814, soon pervaded every section with their intolerant spirit. The huge lie that Protestantism is in matters of State as well as of church essentially revolutionary, while Catholicism is the bulwark of the State against revolution and democracy, was affirmed with such audacity that even Protestant statesmen believed it. The Roman Jesuit Perrone (§ 191, 9) taught the Catholic youth in a controversial Italian catechism that “they should feel a creeping horror come over them at the mere mention of the word Protestantism, more even than when a murderous attack was made upon them, for Protestantism and its defenders are in the religious and moral world just the same as the plague and plague-stricken are in the physical world, and in all lands Protestants are the scum of all that is vile and immoral,” etc. In a pastoral of a.d. 1855, Von Ketteler, Bishop of Mainz, compared the Germans, who by the Reformation rent the unity of the church, to the Jews who crucified the Messiah. Romish prelates have vied with one another in their abuse of Protestants and Protestantism. In a.d. 1881, Leo XIII. speaking of the spread of Russian nihilism, charged Protestant [pg 170] missionaries with spreading the dominion of the prince of darkness. Prof. Hohoff of Paderborn, in his “Hist. Studies on Protestantism and Socialism,” Paderb., 1881, reiterated the accusation: “Yes, it is so, Protestantism has begotten atheism, materialism, scepticism, nihilism. The Reformation was the murderer of all science, the greatest foe of culture and learning, and the falsifier of all history.... Melanchthon's Loci may be styled the most unscientific production in the domain of dogmatics.... Yes, the Reformation has proved a prime source of superstition, a step backward in the history of civilization.... The Catholic church has been the champion of conscience, reason, and freedom.... No one is thoroughly capable of judging historical facts without prejudice as the believing Catholic Christian.”—But while the vast majority of Catholic writers thus abuse Protestantism, others like Seltmann of Eberswald seek to win over to the ranks of the Romish church those who can be befooled by fair speeches. The “Protestant” correspondents in Seltmann's periodical write under the cloak of anonymity.—In Spain the Reformation was long attributed to the Augustinians, who were jealous of the Dominicans as the only dispensers of indulgences, and to Luther's desire to marry; but the poet Nuñez de Arca in his “Vision de Fray Martin,” attributed it to the corruption of the church and papacy of its time, and regarded with sympathy the spiritual struggles of the reformer. Though as a good Catholic he concludes his poem with the ban of the church against Luther, he yet describes him as a just and well-deserving man.
3. Romish Controversy.—In the beginning of a.d. 1872 the Waldensian Professor Sciarelli published as a challenge the thesis that the Apostle Peter never set foot in Rome, and Pius IX. with childlike simplicity gave his consent to a public disputation, which came off at Rome on 9th and 10th February. Three Protestant champions, with Sciarelli at their head, were confronted by three Catholics, headed by Fabiani, before 125 auditors admitted by ticket. Both sides claimed the victory; but the shorthand reports were more widely read through Italy than could be agreeable to the papal court.
4. Roman Catholic Union Schemes.—While American Protestant missionaries strove zealously for the conversion of the schismatical Eastern Churches, Rome with equal diligence but little success endeavoured to win over these and the orthodox Greeks to her own communion. There was great joy over the conversion of the Bulgarians to Romanism in a.d. 1860. Taking advantage of a national movement for the restoration of a patriarchate independent of Constantinople (§ 207, 3), some French Jesuits succeeded in persuading a small number of malcontents to agree to a union with Rome. In 1861 the pope consecrated an old Bulgarian priest, Jos. Sokolski, archbishop [pg 171] of the united Bulgarian church. Very soon, however, he and almost all his followers returned to their allegiance to the Greek Orthodox church. Leo XIII. in his encyclical of a.d. 1880, by giving conspicuous honour to Cyril and Methodius, and uttering kind sentiments about the Christian church in the East, and conferring high rank on dignitaries of the Eastern church, seeks to smooth the way for a union of the two great churches.
5. Greek Orthodox Union Schemes.—In a.d. 1867 the Archbishop of Canterbury addressed a letter to the Patriarch of Constantinople and the whole Eastern church, to open the way to a common understanding and union of the churches, sending a modern Greek translation of the Book of Common Prayer, and asking their assistance at the consecration of an Anglican church at Constantinople. The patriarch Gregorius granted this request, and answered the letter in a friendly manner, passing over the Anglican's warnings against superstitious additions to the doctrine, e.g. mariolatry, but characterizing all the contrary doctrines of the Thirty-nine Articles as “very modern.” At the same time vigorous measures were being taken with a similar object by members of the Russian and of the Anglican churches. In 1870 Professor Overbeck of Halle undertook to act as intermediary in these negotiations. He had in 1865 published, in answer to the papal encyclical with syllabus of December 8th, 1864 (§ 185, 2), a tract with the motto Ex oriente lux, in which he placed the claims of the Orthodox eastern church before the Roman Catholic as well as Protestant. On the opening of the Vatican Council in 1869 he advocated in a pamphlet the breaking up of the papal church and the formation of Catholic national churches. In North America Professor Bjerring, of the Catholic seminary for priests at Baltimore, took the same position. In March, 1871, he went to St. Petersburg, was there ordained as an Orthodox priest, and on his return to New York instituted a Sunday service in the English language according to the Greek rite. Of any further advance in this direction of union nothing is known.
6. Old Catholic Union Schemes.—DŚllinger (§ 191, 5) in a.d. 1871 was hopeful of a union not only with the Greek, but also with the Anglican church, and similar hopes were entertained in England and Russia, and distinguished representatives of both communions took part in the Old Catholic congresses (§ 190, 1). On the invitation of DŚllinger, as president of the committee commissioned by the Freiburg Congress of a.d. 1874 to treat about union with the Anglican church, forty friends of union from Germany, England, Denmark, France, Russia, Greece, and America met in conference at Bonn. After a lively debate the cleft between East and West was bridged over by a compromise treating the filioque as an unnecessary addition to the Nicene symbol, and asserting that, however desirable a mutual understanding [pg 172] on doctrinal questions might be, existing differences in constitution, discipline, and worship presented no bar to union. The Catholics presented the Anglicans with fourteen theses essential to union, in which the anti-Protestant doctrines were for the most part toned down, but transubstantiation distinctly asserted. Subsequent conferences never got beyond these preliminaries. It was, however, agreed that, in case of necessity, Anglicans and Old Catholics might dispense the supper to one another.
7. Conversions.—The most famous converts of the century were Hurter, the biographer of Innocent III., the Countess Ida von Hahn-Hahn, writer of religious romances, Gfroerer, the church historian, the radical Hegelian Daumer, the historian of ante-tridentine theology Hugo Lämmer, and Dr. Ed. Preuss, who had written against the immaculate conception and for criminal conduct had to flee the country. In a.d. 1844 Carl Haas, a Protestant pastor, went over to the Romish church, but the two new dogmas of Pius IX. led him to study the works of Luther. He now returned to the Lutheran church, vindicating his procedure in a treatise entitled, “To Rome, and from Rome back again to Wittenberg, 1881.” Also the Mecklenburg Lutheran pastor, Dr. A. Hager, who, after his conversion, had undertaken the editorship of an ultramontane newspaper in Breslau in 1873, was obliged in a few years to resign the appointment. His return to the evangelical church was being talked about, when he suddenly died in 1883, after having received the last sacrament in the Catholic church. The climax of abuse of Luther and the Lutheran church was reached by the Hanoverian Evers, who had gone over in 1880; in all his scandalous and vituperative writings he describes himself on the title page as “formerly Lutheran pastor.” His mud-throwing, however, was carried so far, that even the ultramontane KŚln. Volkszeitung was constrained to advise him to write more decently.
8. The Mortara affair of a.d. 1858 attracted special attention. The eight-year old son of the Jew Mortara of Bologna was violently taken from his parents to Rome because his Christian nurse said that two years before, during a dangerous illness, she had baptized him. The church answered the entreaties of the parents and the universal outcry by saying that the sacrament had an indelible character, and that the pope could not change the law. Again in a.d. 1864, the ten-year old Jewish boy, Joseph Coën, apprentice weaver in Rome, was decoyed by a priest to his cloister and there persuaded to receive baptism. In vain his mother, the Jewish community, and even the French ambassador, urged his restoration; and when, in a.d. 1870, the temporal power of the pope was overthrown, the lad, now sixteen years old, had himself become such a fanatical Catholic that he refused to have anything to do with his mother as an unbeliever.[pg 173]
9. In the Tyrol in a.d. 1830 there were numerous conversions from Catholicism to Protestantism (§ 198, 1). A Catholic priest in Baden, HenhŚfer of Mühlhausen, influenced by the writings of Sailer and Boos, went over to the Lutheran church in a.d. 1823, and continued down to his death in a.d. 1862 a vigorous opponent of the prevailing rationalism. Count Leopold von Seldnitzsky, formerly Prince-Bishop of Breslau, felt obliged in 1840, in consequence of the conscientious objections he had to perform his official duties toward church and state during the ecclesiastico-political controversies of 1830 (§ 193, 1), to resign his appointments. He was subsequently led in a.d. 1863, through reading the Scriptures and Luther's works, after a sore struggle, to join the evangelical Church. He devoted all his means to the founding of Protestant educational institutions at Berlin and Breslau. He died in a.d. 1871, in his eighty-fourth year. The proclamation by the Vatican of the dogma of infallibility drove many pious and earnest Catholics out of the Romish communion. Of these Carl von Richthofen, Canon of Breslau, engages our special interest. Son of a pious Lutheran mother, and trained up under Gossner's mild spiritual direction (§ 187, 2), his gentle and deeply religious nature had attached itself to the Roman Catholic church of his father only under the illusion that the Romish doctrine of justification was not wholly irreconcilable with the evangelical doctrine. He at first submitted to but soon renounced the Vatican decree; was excommunicated by Archbishop FŚrster, voluntarily resigned his emoluments; joined the Old Catholics in a.d. 1873, and the separated Old Lutherans in a.d. 1875. In the following year he died a painful death from the explosion of a petroleum lamp.—Upon the whole Rome has made most converts in America and England; and she has suffered losses more or less severe in France, Belgium, Ireland, Italy, Spain, and Bohemia.
10. The Luther Centenary, a.d. 1883.—The celebration of Luther's birth was carried out with great enthusiasm throughout all Germany, more than a thousand tracts on Luther and the Reformation were published, statues were erected, special services were held in all Lutheran churches, high schools, and universities, and brilliant demonstrations were made at Jena, Worms, Wittenberg, and Eisleben. There were founded at Kiel a Luther-house, at Worms and at the Wartburg Luther libraries, in Leipzig and Berlin Luther churches. At Eisleben a bronze statue of the reformer was solemnly unveiled representing his tearing the papal bull with his right hand and pressing the Bible to his heart with his left. Another noble monument was raised by the munificence of the emperor by the issuing during this year of the first volume of pastor Knaake's critical edition of Luther's works. A “German Luther Institute” aims at assisting children of the poorer clergy and teachers, and a “Reformation [pg 174] History Society” has undertaken the task of issuing popular tracts on the persons, events and principles of that and the succeeding period based upon original documents. Protestants of all lands, with the exception of the English high-church party, contributed liberally; the Americans had a copy of the great Luther statue of the Worms monument (§ 178, 1) made and erected in Washington. Even in Italy the liberal press eulogised Luther, while the ultramontanes loaded his memory with unmeasured calumny and reproach. The threatened counter-demonstrations of German ultramontanes fell quite flat and harmless. The Zwingli Centenary of January 1st, a.d. 1884, was celebrated with enthusiasm throughout the Reformed church, especially in Switzerland. On the other hand, the celebration of the five-hundredth anniversary of Wiclif's death on December 31st, 1884, created comparatively little interest.
At the beginning of the century rationalism was generally prevalent, but philosophy and literature soon weakened its foundations, and the war of independence moved the hearts of the people toward the faith of their fathers. Pietism entered the lists against rationalism, and the Halle controversy of a.d. 1830 marked the crisis of the struggle. The rationalists were compelled to make appeal to the people by popular agitators. During a.d. 1840 they managed to found several “free churches,” which, however, had for the most part but a short and unprosperous existence. They were more successful in a.d. 1860 with the Protestantenverein as the instrument of their propaganda (§ 180).
1. The old Rationalism was attacked by the disciples of Hegel and Schelling, and in a.d. 1834 RŚhr of Weimar found Hase of Jena as keen an opponent as any pietist or orthodox controversialist. That recognised leader of the old rationalists had coolly attempted to substitute a new and rational form of doctrine, worship, and constitution for the antiquated formularies of the Reformation, and drew down [pg 175] upon himself the rebuke even of those who sympathized with him in his doctrinal views.—In a.d. 1817 Claus Harms of Kiel, on the occasion of the Reformation centenary, opened an attack upon those who had fallen away from the faith of their fathers, by the publication of ninety-five new theses, recalling attention to Luther's almost forgotten doctrines. In a.d. 1827 Aug. Hahn in an academical discussion at Leipzig maintained that the rationalists should be expelled from the church, and Hengstenberg started his Evangelische Kirchenzeitung. The jurist Von Gerlach in a.d. 1830 charged Gesenius and Wegscheider of Halle with open contempt of Christian truth, and called for State interference. In all parts of Germany, amid the opposition of scientific theologians and the scorn of philosophers, pietism made way against rationalism, so that even men of culture regarded it as a reproach to be reckoned among the rationalists. Unbelief, however, was widespread among the masses. When Sintenis, preacher in Magdeburg in a.d. 1840, declared the worship of Christ superstitious, and was reprimanded by the consistory, his neighbours, the pastors Uhlich and KŚnig, founded the society of the “Friends of Light,” whose assembly at KŚthen then was attended by thousands of clergymen and laymen. In one of these assemblies in a.d. 1844, Wislicenus of Halle, by starting the question, Whether the Scriptures or the reason is to be regarded as the standard of faith? shattered the illusion that rationalism still occupied the platform of the church and Scripture. The left wing of the school of Schleiermacher took offence at the severe measures demanded by Hengstenberg and his party, and in 1846 issued in Berlin a manifesto with eighty-eight signatures against the paper pope of antiquated Reformation confessions and the inquisitorial proceedings of the Kirchenzeitung party, as inimical to all liberty of faith and conscience, wishing only to maintain firm hold of the truth that Jesus Christ is yesterday, to-day, and for ever the one and only ground of salvation. The Friends of Light, combining with the German Catholics and the Young Hegelians, founded Free churches at Halle, KŚnigsberg, and many other places. Their services and sermons void of religion, in which the Bible, the living Christ, and latterly even the personal God, had no place, but only the naked worship of humanity, had temporary vitality imparted them by the revolutionary movements of a.d. 1848. This gave the State an excuse, long wished for, to interfere, and soon scarcely a trace of their churches was to be found.
2. Pietism had not been wholly driven out of the evangelical church during the period of ecclesiastical impoverishment, but, purified from many eccentric excesses, and seeking refuge and support for the most part by attaching itself to the community of the Moravian Brethren, it had, even in Württemberg, established itself independently and in [pg 176] an essentially theosophical-chiliastic spirit. There too a kind of spiritualism was introduced by the physician and poet Justin Kerner of Weinsberg, and the philosopher Eschenmayer of Tübingen, with spirit revelations from above and below. Amid the religious movements of the beginning of the century Pietism gained a decided advantage. It took the form of a protest against the rationalism prevailing among the clergy. The earnest and devout sought spiritual nourishment at conventicles and so-called Stunden addressed by laymen, mostly of the working class, well acquainted with Scripture and works in practical divinity. Persecuted by the irreligious mob, the rationalist clergy, and sometimes by the authorities, they by-and-by secured representatives among the younger clergy and in the university chairs, and carried on vigorous missions at home and abroad. This pietism was distinctly evangelical and Protestant. It did not oppose but endeavoured simply to restore the orthodoxy of the church confession. Yet it had many of the characteristics of the earlier pietism: over-estimation of the invisible to the disparagement of the visible church, of sanctification over justification, a tendency to chiliasm, etc.—Of no less importance in awakening the religious life throughout Germany, and especially in Switzerland, was the missionary activity of Madame de Krüdener of Riga. This lady, after many years of a gay life, forsook the world, and began in a.d. 1814 her travels through Europe, preaching repentance, proclaiming the gospel message in the prisons, the foolishness of the cross to the wise of this world, and to kings and princes the majesty of Christ as King of kings. Wherever she went she made careless sinners tremble, and drew around her crowds of the anxious and spiritually burdened of every sort and station. Honoured by some as a saint, prophetess, and wonder-worker, ridiculed by others as a fool, persecuted as a dangerous fanatic or deceiver, driven from one country to another, she died in the Crimea in a.d. 1824.83
3. The KŚnigsberg Religious Movement, a.d. 1835-1842.—The pious theosophist, J. H. SchŚnherr of KŚnigsberg, starting from the two primitive substances, fire and water, developed a system of theosophy in which he solved the riddles of the theogony and cosmogony, of sin and redemption, and harmonized revelation with the results of natural science. At first influenced by these views, but from a.d. 1819 expressly dissenting from them, J. W. Ebel, pastor in the same city, gathered round him a group of earnest Christian men and women, Counts Kanitz and Finkenstein and their wives, Von Tippelskirch, afterwards preacher to the embassy at Rome, the theological professor [pg 177] H. Olshausen, the pastor Dr. Diestel, and the medical doctor Sachs. After some years Olshausen and Tippelskirch withdrew, and dissensions arose which gave opportunity to the ecclesiastical authorities to order an investigation. Ebel was charged with founding a sect in which impure practices were encouraged. He was suspended in a.d. 1835, and at the instigation of the consistory a criminal process was entered upon against him. Dr. Sachs, who had been expelled from the society, was the chief and almost only witness, but vague rumours were rife about mystic rites and midnight orgies. Ebel and Diestel were deposed in a.d. 1839, and pronounced incapable of holding any public office; and as a sect founder Ebel was sentenced to imprisonment in the common jail. On appeal to the court of Berlin, the deposition was confirmed, but all the rest of the sentence was quashed, and the parties were pronounced capable of holding any public offices except those of a spiritual kind. Two reasons were alleged for deposition: (1) That Ebel, though not from the pulpit or in the public instruction of the young, yet in private religious teaching, had inculcated his theosophical views. (2) That both of them as married men had given expression to opinions injurious to the purity of married life. In general they were charged with spreading a doctrine which was in conflict with the principles of Christianity, and making such use of sexual relations as was fitted to awaken evil thoughts in the minds of hearers. Ebel was pronounced guiltless of sectarianism.—Kanitz wrote a book in defence, which represents Ebel and Diestel as martyrs to their pure Christian piety in an age hostile to every pietistic movement; whereas Von Wegnern, followed by Hepworth Dixon, in a romancing and frivolous style, lightly give currency to evil surmisings without offering any solid basis of proof. The whole affair still waits for a patient and unprejudiced investigation.84
4. The Bender Controversy.—At the Luther centenary festival of a.d. 1883, Prof. Bender of Bonn declared that in the confessional writings of the Reformation evangelical truth had been obscured by Romish scholasticism, introduced by subtle jurists and sophistical theologians. This called forth vigorous opposition, in which two of his colleagues, 38 theological students, 59 members of the Rhenish synod, took part. General-Superintendent Baur, also, in a new year's address, inveighed against Bender's statements. On the other hand, 170 students of Bonn, 32 of these theological students, gave a grand ovation to the “brave vindicator of academic freedom.” The Rhenish and Westphalian synods bewailed the offence given by Bender's address, and protested [pg 178] against its hard and unfounded attacks upon the confessional writings. At the Westphalian synod, Prof. Mangold said that the faculty was as much offended at the address as the church had been, but that its author, when he found how his words had created such feeling, sought in every way to repress the agitation, and had intended only to pass a scientific judgment on ecclesiastical and theological developments.
From a.d. 1817 Prussia favoured and furthered the scheme for union between the two evangelical churches, and over this question a split arose in the camp of pietism. On the one hand were the confessionalists, determined to maintain what was distinctive in their symbols, and on the other, those who would sacrifice almost anything for union. For the most part both churches cordially seconded the efforts of the royal head of the church; only in Silesia did a Lutheran minority refuse to give way, which still maintains a separate existence.
1. The Evangelical Union.—Circumstances favoured this movement. Both in the Lutheran and in the Reformed church comparatively little stress was laid upon distinctive confessional doctrines, and pietism and rationalism, for different reasons, had taught the relative unimportance of dogma. And so a general accord was given to the king's proposal, at the Reformation centenary of a.d. 1817, to fortify the Protestant church by means of a Union of Lutherans and Calvinists. The new Book of Common Order of a.d. 1822, in the preparation of which the pious king, Frederick William III., had himself taken part, was indeed condemned by many as too high-church, even Catholicizing in its tendency. A revised edition in a.d. 1829, giving a wider choice of formularies, was legally authorized, and the union became an accomplished fact. There now existed in Prussia an evangelical national church with a common government and liturgy, embracing within it three different sections: a Lutheran, and a Reformed, which held to their distinctive doctrines, though not regarding these as a cause of separation, and a real union party, which completely abandoned the points of difference. But more and more the union became identified with doctrinal indifferentism and slighting of all church symbols, and those in whom the church feeling still prevailed were driven into opposition to the union (§ 193). The example of Prussia in sacking the union of the two churches was [pg 179] followed by Nassau, Baden, Rhenish Bavaria, Anhalt, and to some extent in Hesse (§§ 194, 196).
2. The Lutheran Separation.—Though the union denied that there was any passing over from one church to another, it practically declared the distinctive doctrines to be unessential, and so assumed the standpoint of the Reformed church. Steffens (§ 174, 3), the friend of Scheibel of Breslau, who had been deprived of his professorship in a.d. 1832 for his determined opposition to the union, and died in exile in 1843 (§ 195, 2), headed a reaction in favour of old Lutheranism. Several suspended clergymen in Silesia held a synod at Breslau in a.d. 1835, to organize a Lutheran party, but the civil authorities bore so heavily upon them that most of them emigrated to America and Australia. Guericke of Halle, secretly ordained pastor, ministered in his own house to a small company of Lutheran separatists, was deprived of his professorship in a.d. 1835, and only restored in a.d. 1840, after he had apologised for his conduct. From a.d. 1838, the laws were modified by Frederick William IV., imprisoned clergymen were liberated in a.d. 1840, and a Lutheran church of Prussia independent of the national church was constituted by a general synod at Breslau in a.d. 1841, which received recognition by royal favour in a.d. 1845. The affairs are administered by a supreme council resident in Breslau, presided over by the distinguished jurist Huschke. Other separations were prevented by timely concessions on the part of the national church. The separatists claim 50,000 members, with fifty pastors and seven superintendents.
3. The Separation within the Separation.—Differences arose among the separate Lutherans, especially over the question of the visible church. The majority, headed by Huschke, defined the visible church as an organism of various offices and orders embracing even unbelievers, which is to be sifted by the divine judgment. To it belongs the office of church government, which is a jus divinum, and only in respect of outward form a jus humanum. The opposition understood visibility of the preaching of the word and dispensation of sacraments, and held that unbelievers belonged as little to the visible as to the invisible church. The distribution of orders and offices is a merely human arrangement without divine appointment, individual members are quite independent of one another, the church recognises no other government than that of the unfettered preaching of the word, and each pastor rules in his own congregation. Diedrich of Jabel and seven other pastors complained of the papistical assumptions of the supreme council, and at a general synod in a.d. 1860 refused to recognise the authority of that council, or of a majority of synods, and in a.d. 1861, along with their congregations, they formally seceded and constituted the so called Immanuel Synod.
The union had only added a third denomination to the two previously existing, and was the means of even further dissension and separation. Thus the interests of Protestantism were endangered in presence of the unbelief within her own borders and the machinations of the ultramontane Catholics without. An attempt was therefore made in a.d. 1840 to combine the scattered Protestant forces, by means of confederation, for common work and conflict with common foes.
1. The Gustavus Adolphus Society.—In a.d. 1832, on the two hundredth anniversary of the birth of the saviour of German Protestantism, on the motion of Superintendent Grossman of Leipzig, a society was formed for the help of needy Protestant churches, especially in Catholic districts. At first almost confined to Saxony, it soon spread over Germany, till only Bavaria down to a.d. 1849, and Austria down to a.d. 1860, were excluded by civil enactment from its operations. The masses were attracted by the simplicity of its basis, which was simply opposition to Catholicism, and the demagogical Friends of Light soon found supremacy in its councils. Because of opposition to the expulsion of Rupp, in a.d. 1846, as an apostate from the principle of protestantism, great numbers with church leanings seceded, and attempted to form a rival union in a.d. 1847. After recovering from the convulsions of a.d. 1848, under the wise guidance of Zimmermann of Darmstadt, the society regained a solid position. In a.d. 1883 it had 1,779 branches, besides 392 women's and 11 students' unions, and a revenue for the year of about £43,000.—The same feeling led to the erection of the Luther Monument at Worms. This work of genius, designed by Rietschel, and completed after his death in a.d. 1857 by his pupils, and inaugurated on 25th June, a.d. 1868, represents all the chief episodes in the Reformation history. It was erected at a cost of more than £20,000, raised by voluntary contributions, and the scheme proved so popular that there was a surplus of £2,000, which was devoted to the founding of bursaries for theological students.
2. The Eisenach Conference.—The other German states borrowed the idea of confederation from Prussia and Württemberg. It took practical shape in the meetings of deputies at Eisenach, begun in a.d. 1852, and was held for a time yearly, and afterwards every second year, to consult together on matters of worship, discipline and constitution. Beyond ventilating such questions the conference yielded no result.[pg 181]
3. The Evangelical Alliance.—An attempt was made in England, on the motion of Dr. Chalmers (§ 202, 7), at a yet more comprehensive confederation of all Protestant churches of all lands against the encroachments of popery and puseyism (§ 202, 2). After several preliminary meetings the first session of the Evangelical Alliance was held in London in August, a.d. 1846. Its object was the fraternizing of all evangelical Christians on the basis of agreement upon the fundamental truths of salvation, the vindication and spread of this common faith, and contention for liberty of conscience and religious toleration. Nine articles were laid down as terms of membership: Belief in the inspiration of Scripture, in the Trinity, in the divinity of Christ, in original sin, in justification by faith alone, in the obligatoriness of the two sacraments, in the resurrection of the body, in the last judgment, and in the eternal blessedness of the righteous and the eternal condemnation of the ungodly. It could thus include Baptists, but not Quakers. In a.d. 1855 it held its ninth meeting at the great Paris Industrial Exhibition as a sort of church exhibition, the representatives of different churches reporting on the condition of their several denominations. The tenth meeting, of a.d. 1857, was held in Berlin. The council of the Alliance, presided over by Sir Culling Eardley, presented an address to King Frederick William IV., in which it was said that they aimed a blow not only against the sadduceanism, but also against the pharisaism of the German evangelical church. The confessional Lutherans, who had opposed the Alliance, regarded this latter reference as directed against them. The king, however, received the deputation most graciously, while declaring that he entertained the brightest hopes for the future of the church, and urged cordial brotherly love among Christians. Though many distinguished confessionalists were members of the Alliance none of them put in an appearance. The members of the “Protestantenverein” (§ 180) would not take part because the articles were too orthodox. On the other hand, numerous representatives of pietism, unionism, Melanchthonianism, as well as Baptists, Methodists, and Moravians, crowded in from all parts, and were supported by the leading liberals in church and state. While there was endless talk about the oneness and differences of the children of God, about the universal priesthood, about the superiority of the present meeting over the œcumenical councils of the ancient church, about the want of spiritual life in the churches, even where the theology of the confessions was professed, etc., with denunciations of half-Catholic Lutheranism and its sacramentarianism and officialism, and many a true and admirable statement of what the church's needs are, Merle d'Aubigné introduced discord by the hearty welcome which he accorded his friend Bunsen, which was intensified by the passionate manner in [pg 182] which Krummacher reported upon it. The gracious royal reception of the members of the Alliance, at which Krummacher gave expression to his excited feelings in the words, “Your Majesty, we would all fall not at your feet, but on your neck!” was described by his brother, Dr. F. W. Krummacher, as a sensible prelude to the solemn scenes of the last judgment. Sir Culling Eardley declared, “There is no more the North Sea.” Lord Shaftesbury said in London that with the Berlin Assembly a new era had begun in the world's history; and others who had returned from it extolled it as a second Pentecost.
4. The Evangelical Church Alliance.—After the revolution of a.d. 1848, the most distinguished theologians, clergymen and laymen well-affected toward the church, sought to bring about a confederation of the Lutheran, Reformed, United, and Moravian churches. When they held their second assembly at Wittenberg, a.d. 1849, many of the strict Lutherans had already withdrawn, especially those of Silesia. The Lutheran congress, held shortly before at Leipzig under the presidency of Harless, had pronounced the confederation unsatisfactory. The political reaction in favour of the church had also taken away the occasion for such a confederation. Yet the yearly deliberations of this council on matters of practical church life did good service. An attempt made at the Berlin meeting of a.d. 1853 to have the Augustana adopted as the church confession awakened keen opposition. At the Stuttgart meeting of a.d. 1857 there were violent debates on foreign missions and evangelical Catholicity between the representatives of confessional Lutheranism who had hitherto maintained connection with the confederation and the unionist majority. The Lutherans now withdrew. The attempt made at the Berlin October assembly of a.d. 1871, amid the excitement produced by the glorious issue of the Franco-Prussian War and the founding of the new German empire with a Protestant prince, to draw into the confederation confessional Lutherans and adherents of the “Protestantenverein,” in order to form a grand German Protestant national church, miscarried, and a meeting of the confederation in the old style met again at Halle in the following year. But it was now found that its day was past.
5. The Evangelical League.—At a meeting of the Prussian evangelical middle party in autumn, 1886, certain members, “constrained by grief at the surrender of arms by the Prussian government in the Kulturkampf,” gathered together for private conference, and resolved in defence of the threatened interests of the evangelical church to found an “Evangelical League” out of the various theological and ecclesiastical parties. Prominent party leaders on both sides being admitted, a number of moderate representatives of all schools were invited to a consultative gathering at Erfurt. On January 15th, 1887, a call to join the membership of the league was issued. It was [pg 183] signed by distinguished men of the middle party, such as Beyschlag, Riehm of Halle, etc., moderate representatives of confessionalism and the positive union, such as Kawerau of Kiel, Fricke of Leipzig, Witte, Warneck, etc., and liberal theologians like Lipsius and Nippold of Jena, etc.; and it soon received the addition of about 250 names. It recognised Jesus Christ, as the only begotten Son of God, as the only means of salvation, and professed the fundamental doctrines of the Reformation. It represented the task of the League as twofold: on the one hand the defending at all points the interests of the evangelical church against the advancing pretensions of Rome, and, on the other hand, the strengthening of the communal consciousness of the Christian evangelical church against the cramping influence of party, as well as in opposition to indifferentism and materialism. For the accomplishment of this task the league organized itself under the control of a central board with subordinate branches over all Germany, each having a committee for representing its interests in the press, and with annual general assemblies of all the members for common consultation and promulgating of decrees.
Widespread as the favourable reception of the Prussian union had been, there were still a number of Lutheran states in which the Reformed church had scarcely any adherents, e.g. Bavaria, Saxony, Hanover, Mecklenburg, and Schleswig-Holstein; and the same might be said of the Baltic Provinces and of the three Scandinavian kingdoms. Also in Austria, France, and Russia the two denominations kept apart; and in Poland, the union of a.d. 1828 was dissolved in a.d. 1849 (§ 206, 3). The Lutheran confessional reaction in Prussia afforded stimulus to those who had thus stood apart. In all lands, amid the conflict with rationalism, the confessional spirit both of Lutheran and Reformed became more and more pronounced.
1. Lutheranism within the Union.—After the Prussian State church had been undermined by the revolution of a.d. 1848, an unsuccessful attempt was made to have a pure Lutheran confessional church set up in its place. At the October assembly in Berlin, in a.d. 1871, an [pg 184] ineffectual effort was made by the United Lutherans to co-operate with those who were unionists on principle. During the agitation caused by the May Laws (§ 197, 5) and the Sydow proceedings (§ 180, 4), the first general evangelical Lutheran conference was held in August, a.d. 1873, in Berlin. It assumed a moderate conciliatory tone toward the union, pronounced the efforts of the “Protestantenverein” (§ 180) an apostasy from the fundamental doctrines of the gospel, bewailed the issuing of the May Laws, protested against their principles, but acknowledged the duty of obedience, and concluded an address to the emperor with a petition on behalf of a democratic church constitution and civil marriage.—The literary organs of the United Lutherans are the “Evang. Kirchenzeitung,” edited by Hengstenberg, and now by ZŚckler, and the “Allgem. konserv. Monatsschrift für die christl. Deutschl.,” by Von Nathusius.
2. Lutheranism outside of the Union.—A general Lutheran conference was held under the presidency of Harless, in July, a.d. 1868, at which the sentiments of Kliefoth, denouncing a union under a common church government without agreement about doctrine and sacraments, met with almost universal acceptance. At the Leipzig gathering of a.d. 1870, Luthardt urged the duty of firmly maintaining doctrinal unity in the Lutheran church. The assembly of the following year agreed to recognise the emperor as head of the church only in so far as he did not interfere with the dispensation of word and sacrament, admitted the legality of a merely civil marriage but maintained that despisers of the ecclesiastical ordinance should be subjected to discipline, that communion fellowship is to be allowed neither to Reformed nor unionists if fixed residents, but to unionists faithful to the confession if temporary residents, even without expressly joining their party; and also with reference to the October assembly of the previous year the union of the two Protestant churches of Germany under a mixed system of church government was condemned. The third general conference of Nüremburg, in a.d. 1879, dealt with the questions: Whether the church should be under State control or free? Whether the schools should be denominational or not? and in both cases decided in favour of the latter alternative.—Its literary organ is Luthardt's “Allg. Luth. Kirchenzeitung.”
3. Melancthonianism and Calvinism.—The Reformed church of Germany has maintained a position midway between Lutheranism and Calvinism very similar to the later Melanchthonianism. Ebrard indeed sought to prove that strict predestinarianism was only an excrescence of the Reformed system, whereas Schweitzer, purely in the interests of science (§ 182, 9, 16), has shown that it is its all-conditioning nerve and centre, to which it owes its wonderful vitality, force, and consistency. Heppe of Marburg went still further than Ebrard in his [pg 185] attempt to combine Lutheranism and Calvinism in a Melancthonian church (§ 182, 16), by seeking to prove that the original evangelical church of Germany was Melanchthonian, that after Luther's death the fanatics, more Lutheran than Luther, founded the so-called Lutheran church and completed it by issuing the Formula of Concord; that the Calvinizing of the Palatinate, Hesse, Brandenburg, Anhalt was only a reaction against hyper- or pseudo-Lutheranism, and that the restoration of the original Melanchthonianism, and the modern union movement were only the completion of that restoration. Schenkel's earlier contributions to Reformation history moved in a similar direction. Ebrard also, in a.d. 1851, founded a “Ref. Kirchenzeitung.”—But even the genuine strict Calvinism had zealous adherents during this century, not only in Scotland (§ 202, 7) and the Netherlands (§ 200, 2), but also in Germany, especially in the Wupperthal. G. D. Krummacher, from a.d. 1816 pastor in Elberfeld, and his nephew F. W. Krummacher of Barmen, were long its chief representatives. When Prussia sought in a.d. 1835 to force the union in the Wupperthal, and threatened the opposing Reformed pastors with deposition, the revolt here proved almost as serious as that of the Lutherans in Silesia. The pastors, with the majority of their people agreed at last to the union only in so far as it was in accordance with the Reformed mode of worship. But a portion, embracing their most important members, stood apart and refused all conciliation. The royal Toleration Act of a.d. 1847 allowed them to form an independent congregation at Elberfeld with Dr. Kohlbrügge as their minister. This divine, formerly Lutheran pastor at Amsterdam, was driven out owing to a contest with a rationalising colleague, and afterwards, through study of Calvin's writings, became an ardent Calvinist. This body, under the name of the Dutch Reformed church, constituted the one anti-unionist, strictly Calvinistic denomination in Prussia.—The De Cock movement (§ 200, 2), out of which in a.d. 1830 the separate “Chr. Ref. Church of Holland” sprang, spread over the German frontiers and led to the founding there of the “Old Ref. Church of East Frisia and Bentheim,” which has now nine congregations and seven pastors.—At the meeting of the Evangelical Alliance in New York in a.d. 1873, the Presbyterians present resolved to convoke an œcumenical Reformed council. A conference in London in a.d. 1875 brought to maturity the idea of a Pan-Presbyterian assembly. The council is to meet every third year; the members recognise the supreme authority of the Old and New Testament in matters of faith and practice, and accept the consensus of all the Reformed confessions. The first “General Presbyterian Council” met in Edinburgh from 3rd to 10th July, a.d. 1877, about 300 delegates being present. The proceedings consisted in [pg 186] unmeasured glorification of presbyterianism “drawn from the whole Scripture, from the seventy elders of the Pentateuch to the twenty-four elders of the Apocalypse.” The second council met at Philadelphia in a.d. 1880, and boasted that it represented forty millions of Presbyterians. It appointed a committee to draw up a consensus of the confessions of all Reformed churches. The third council of 305 members met at Belfast in a.d. 1884, and after a long debate declined, by a great majority, to adopt a strictly formulated consensus of doctrine as uncalled for and undesirable, and by the reception of the Cumberland Presbyterians they even surrendered the Westminster Confession (§ 155, 1) as the only symbol qualifying for membership of the council. The fourth council met in London in a.d. 1887.—An œcumenical Methodist congress was held in London in a.d. 1881, attended by 400 delegates.
Rationalists of all descriptions, adherents of Baur's school, as well as disciples of Hegel and Schleiermacher of the left wing, kept far off from every evangelical union. But the common negation of the tendencies characterizing the evangelical confederations and the common endeavour after a free, democratic, non-confessional organization of the German Protestant church, awakened in them a sense of the need of combination and co-operation. While in North Germany this feeling was powerfully expressed from a.d. 1854, in the able literary organ the “Protest. Kirchenzeitung,” in South Germany, with Heidelberg as a centre and Dean Zittel as chief agitator, local “Protestantenvereine” were formed, which combined in a united organization in the Assembly of Frankfort, a.d. 1863. After long debates the northern and southern societies were joined in one. In June, a.d. 1865, the first general Protestant assembly was held at Eisenach, and the nature, motive, and end of the associations were defined. To these assemblies convened from year to year members of the society crowded from all parts of Germany in order to encourage one another to persevere in spreading their views by word and pen, and to [pg 187] take steps towards the founding of branch associations for disseminating among the people a Christianity which renounces the miraculous and sets aside the doctrines of the church.
1. The Protestant Assembly.—The first general German Protestant Assembly, composed of 400 clerical and lay notabilities, met at Eisenach in a.d. 1865, under the presidency of the jurist Bluntschli of Heidelberg and the chief court preacher Schwarz of Gotha. A peculiar lustre was given to the meeting by the presence of Rothe of Heidelberg. Of special importance was Schwarz's address on “The Limits of Doctrinal Freedom in Protestantism,” which he sought not in the confession, not in the authority of the letter of Scripture, not even in certain so called fundamental articles, but in the one religious moral truth of Christianity, the gospel of love and the divine fatherhood as Christ taught it, expounded it in his life and sealed it by his death. In Berlin, Osnabrück, and Leipzig, the churches were refused for services according to the Protestantenverein. In a.d. 1868 fifteen heads of families in Heidelberg petitioned the ecclesiastical council to grant them the use of one of the city churches where a believing clergyman might conduct service in the old orthodox fashion. This request was refused by fifty votes against four. Baumgarten denounced this intolerance, and declared that unless repudiated by the union it would be a most serious stain upon its reputation. In a.d. 1877 he publicly withdrew from the society.
2. The “Protestantenverein” Propaganda.—The views of the union were spread by popular lectures and articles in newspapers and magazines. The “Protestanten-Bibel,” edited by Schmidt and Holtzendorff in a.d. 1872, of which an English translation has been published, giving the results of New Testament criticism, “laid the axe at the root of the dogmatics and confessionalism,” and proved that “we are still Christians though our conception of Christianity diverges in many points from that of the second century, and we proclaim a Christianity without miracles and in accordance with the modern theory of the universe.” The success of such efforts to spread the broad theology has been greatly over-estimated. Enthusiastic partisans of the union claimed to have the whole evangelical world at their back, while Holtzendorff boasted that they had all thoughtful Germans with them.
3. Sufferings Endured.—In many instances members of the society were disciplined, suspended and deposed. In October, a.d. 1880, Beesenmeyer of Mannheim, on his appointment to Osnabrück, was examined by the consistory. He confessed an economic but not an [pg 188] essential Trinity, the sinlessness and perfect godliness but not the divinity of Christ, the atoning power of Christ's death but not the doctrine of vicarious satisfaction. He was pronounced unorthodox, and so unfit to hold office. Schroeder, a pastor in the consistory of Wiesbaden in a.d. 1871, on his refusing to use the Apostles' Creed at baptism and confirmation, was deposed, but on appealing to the minister of worship, Dr. Falk, he was restored in the beginning of a.d. 1874. The Stettin consistory declined to ordain Dr. Hanne on account of his work “Der ideale u. d. geschichtl. Christus,” and an appeal to the superior court and another to the king were unsuccessful. Several members of the church protested against the call of Dr. Ziegler to Liegnitz in a.d. 1873, on account of his trial discourse and a previous lecture on the authority of the Bible, and the consistory refused to sustain the call. The Supreme Church Council, however, when appealed to, declared itself satisfied with Ziegler's promise to take unconditionally the ordination vow, which requires acceptance of the fundamental doctrines of the gospel and not the peculiar theological system of the symbols.
4. The conflicts in Berlin were specially sharp. In a.d. 1872 the aged pastor of the so called New Church, Dr. Sydow, delivered a lecture on the miraculous birth of Jesus, in which he declared that he was the legitimate son of Joseph and Mary. His colleague, Dr. Lisco, son of the well-known commentator, spoke of legendary elements in the Apostles' Creed, and denied its authority. Lisco was reprimanded and cautioned by the consistory. Sydow was deposed. He appealed, together with twenty-six clergymen of the province of Brandenburg, and twelve Berlin pastors, to the Supreme Church Council. The Jena theologians also presented a largely signed petition to Dr. Falk against the procedure of the consistory, while the Weimar and Württemberg clergy sent a petition in favour of maintaining strict discipline. The superior court reversed the sentence, on the ground that the lecture was not given in the exercise of his office, and severely reprimanded Sydow for giving serious offence by its public delivery. At a Berlin provincial synod in a.d. 1877, an attack was made by pastor Rhode on creed subscription. Hossbach, preaching in a vacant church, declared that he repudiated the confessional doctrine of the divinity of Christ, regarded the life of Jesus in the gospels as a congeries of myths, etc. Some loudly protested and others as eagerly pressed for his settlement. The consistory accepted Rhode's retractation and annulled Hossbach's call. The Supreme Church Council supported the consistory, and issued a strict order to its president to suffer no departure from the confession. The congregation next chose Dr. Schramm, a pronounced adherent of the same party, who was also rejected. In a.d. 1879 Werner, biographer of Boniface, a more moderate [pg 189] disciple of the same school, holding a sort of Arian position, received the appointment. When, in a.d. 1880, the Supreme Church Council demanded of Werner a clear statement of his belief regarding Scripture, the divinity and resurrection of Christ, and the Apostles Creed, and on receiving his reply summoned him to a conference at Berlin, he resigned his office.
5. The conflicts in Schleswig Holstein also caused considerable excitement. Pastor Kühl of Oldensworth had published an article at Easter, a.d. 1880, entitled, “The Lord is Risen indeed,” in which the resurrection was made purely spiritual. He was charged with violating his ordination vow, sectaries pointed to his paper as proof of their theory that the state church was the apocalyptic Babylon, and petitions from 115 ministers and 2,500 laymen were presented against him to the consistory of Kiel. The consistory exhorted Kühl to be more careful and his opponents to be more patient. In the same year, however, he published a paper in which he denied that the order of nature was set aside by miracles. He was now advised to give up writing and confine himself to his pastoral work. A pamphlet by Decker on “The Old Faith and the New,” was answered by Lühr, and his mode of dealing with the ordination vow was of such a kind as to lead pastor Paulsen to speak of it as a “chloroforming of his conscience.”
During the eighteenth century the services of the evangelical church had become thoroughly corrupted and disordered under the influence of the “Illumination,” and were quite incapable of answering to the Christian needs and ecclesiastical tastes of the nineteenth century. Whenever there was a revival in favour of the faith of their fathers, a movement was made in the direction of improved forms of worship. The Rationalists and Friends of Light, however, prevented progress except in a few states. Even the official Eisenach Conference did no more than prepare the way and indicate how action might afterwards be taken.
1. The Hymnbook.—Traces of the vandalism of the Illumination were to be seen in all the hymnbooks. The noble poet Ernst Moritz Arndt was the first to enter the lists as a restorer; and various attempts were made by Von Elsner, Von Raumer, Bunsen, Stier, Knapp, [pg 190] Daniel, Harms, etc., to make collections of sacred songs answerable to the revived Christian sentiment of the people. These came to be largely used, not in the public services, but in family worship, and prepared the way for official revisal of the books for church use. The Eisenach Conference of a.d. 1853 resolved to issue 150 classical hymns with the old melodies as an appendix to the old collection and a pattern for further work. Only with difficulty was the resolution passed to make a.d. 1750 the terminus ad quem in the choice of pieces. Wackernagel insisted on a strict adherence to the original text and retired from the committee when this was not agreed to. Only in a few states has the Eisenach collection been introduced; e.g. in Bavaria, where it has been incorporated in its new hymnbook.
2. The Book of Chorales.—In a.d. 1814, Frederick William III. of Prussia sought to secure greater prominence to the liturgy in the church service. In a.d. 1817, Natorp of Münster expressed himself strongly as to the need of restoring the chorale to its former position, and he was followed by the jurist Thibaut, whose work on “The Purity of Tone” has been translated into English. The reform of the chorale was carried out most vigorously in Württemberg, but it was in Bavaria that the old chorale in its primitive simplicity was most widely introduced.
3. The Liturgy.—Under the reign of the Illuminists the liturgy had suffered even more than the hymns. The Lutherans now went back to the old Reformation models, and liturgical services, with musical performances, became popular in Berlin. Conferences held at Dresden did much for liturgical reform, and the able works and collections of SchŚberlein supplied abundant materials for the practical carrying out of the movement.
4. The Holy Scriptures.—The Calw Bible in its fifth edition adopted somewhat advanced views on inspiration, the canon and authenticity, while maintaining generally the standpoint of the most reverent and pious students of scripture. Bunsen's commentary assumed a “mediating” position, and the “Protestant Bible” on the New Testament, translated into English, that of the advanced school. Besser's expositions of the New Testament books, of which we have in English those on John's gospel, had an unexampled popularity. The Eisenach Conference undertook a revision of Luther's translation of the Bible. The revised New Testament was published in a.d. 1870, and accepted by some Bible societies. The much more difficult task of Old Testament revision was entrusted to a committee of distinguished university theologians, which concluded its labours in a.d. 1881. A “proof” Bible was issued in a.d. 1883, and the final corrected rendering in a.d. 1886. A whole legion of pamphlets were now issued from all quarters. Some bitterly opposing any change in the [pg 191] Luther-text, others severely criticising the work, so that the whole movement seems now at a standstill.85—In England, in May, 1885, the work of revision of the English version of the Bible, undertaken by order of convocation, was completed after fifteen years' labour, and issued jointly by the two universities of Oxford and Cambridge. The revised New Testament, prepared four years previously, had been telegraphed in short sections to America by the representative of the New York Herald, so that the complete work appeared there rather earlier than in England. But in the case of the Old Testament revision such freebooting industry was prevented by the strict and careful reserve of all concerned in the work. The revised New Testament had meanwhile never been introduced into the public services; whether the completed Bible will ever succeed in overcoming this prejudice remains to be seen.86
The real founder of modern Protestant theology, the Origen of the nineteenth century, is Schleiermacher. His influence was so powerful and manysided that it extended not merely to his own school, but also in almost all directions, even to the Catholic church, embracing destructive and constructive tendencies such as appeared before in Origen and Erigena. Alongside of the vulgar rationalism, which still had notable representatives, De Wette founded the new school of historico-critical rationalism, and Neander that of pietistic supernaturalism, which soon overshadowed the two older schools of rational and supra-rational supernaturalism. On the basis of Schelling's and Hegel's philosophy Daub founded the school of speculative theology with an evangelical tendency; but after Hegel's death it split into a right [pg 192] and left wing. As the former could not maintain its position, its adherents by-and-by went over to other schools; and the latter, setting aside speculation and dogmatics, applied itself to the critical investigation of the early history of Christianity, and founded the school of Baur at Tübingen. Schleiermacher's school also split into a right and left wing. Each of them took the union as its standard; but the right, which claimed to be the “German” and the “Modern” theology, wished a union under a consensus of the confessions, and sought to effect an accommodation between the old faith and the modern liberalism; whereas the left wished union without a confession, and unconditioned toleration of “free science.” This latter tendency, however, secured greater prominence and importance from a.d. 1854, through combination with the representatives of the historico-critical and the younger generation of the Baurian school, from which originated the “free Protestant” theology. On the other hand, under the influence of pietism, there has arisen since a.d. 1830, especially in the universities of Erlangen, Leipzig, Rostock, and Dorpat, a Lutheran confessional school, which seeks to develop a Lutheran system of theology of the type of Gerhard and Bengel. A similar tendency has also shown itself in the Reformed church. The most recent theological school is that founded by Ritschl, resting on a Lutheran basis but regarded by the confessionalists as rather allied to the “free Protestant” theology, on account of its free treatment of certain fundamental doctrines of Lutheranism.—Theological contributions from Scandinavia, England, and Holland are largely indebted to German theology.
1. Schleiermacher, a.d. 1768-1834.—Thoroughly grounded in philosophy and deeply imbued with the pious feeling of the Moravians among whom he was trained, Schleiermacher began his career in a.d. 1807 as professor and university preacher at Halle, but, to escape French domination, went in the same year to Berlin, where by speech and writing he sought to arouse German patriotism. There he was appointed preacher in a.d. 1809, and professor in a.d. 1810, and continued [pg 193] to hold these offices till his death in a.d. 1834. In a.d. 1799 he published five “Reden über d. Religion.” In these it was not biblical and still less ecclesiastical Christianity which he sought with glowing eloquence to address to the hearts of the German people, but Spinozist pantheism. The fundamental idea of his life, that God, “the absolute unity,” cannot be reached in thought nor grasped by will, but only embraced in feeling as immediate consciousness, and hence that feeling is the proper seat of religion, appears already in his early productions as the centre of his system. In the following year, a.d. 1800, he set forth his ethical theory in five “Monologues”: every man should in his own way represent humanity in a special blending of its elements. The study and translation of Plato, which occupied him now for several years, exercised a powerful influence upon him. He approached more and more towards positive Christianity. In a Christmas Address in a.d. 1803 on the model of Plato's Symposium, he represents Christ as the divine object of all faith. In a.d. 1811 he published his “Short Outline of Theological Study,” which has been translated into English, a masterly sketch of theological encyclopædia. In a.d. 1821 he produced his great masterpiece, “Der Chr. Glaube,” which makes feeling the seat of all religion as immediate consciousness of absolute dependence, perfectly expressed in Jesus Christ, whose life redeems the world. The task of dogmatics is to give scientific expression to the Christian consciousness as seen the life of the redeemed; it has not to prove, but only to work out and exhibit in relation to the whole spiritual life what is already present as a fact of experience. Thus dogmatics and philosophy are quite distinct. He proves the evangelical Protestant character of the doctrines thus developed by quotations from the consensus of both confessions. Notwithstanding his protest, many of his contemporaries still found remnants of Spinozist pantheism. On certain points too, he failed to satisfy the claims of orthodoxy; e.g. in his Sabellian doctrine of the Trinity, his theory of election, his doctrine of the canon, and his account of the beginning and close of our Lord's life, the birth and the ascension.87
2. The Older Rationalistic Theology.—The older, so-called vulgar rationalism, was characterized by the self-sufficiency with which it rejected all advances from philosophy and theology, science and national literature. The new school of historico-critical rationalism availed itself of every aid in the direction of scientific investigation. The father of the vulgar rationalism of this age was RŚhr of Weimar, who exercised his ingenuity in proving how one holding such views [pg 194] might still hold office in the church. To this school also belonged Paulus of Heidelberg, described by Marheineke as one who believes he thinks and thinks he believes but was incapable of either; Wegscheider of Halle, who in his “Institutions theol. Christ. dogmaticæ” repudiates miracles; Bretschneider of Gotha, who began as a supernaturalist and afterwards went over to extreme rationalism; and Ammon of Dresden, who afterwards passed over to rational supernaturalism.
3. The founder of Historico-critical Rationalism was De Wette; a contemporary of Schleiermacher in Berlin University, but deprived of office in a.d. 1819 for sending a letter of condolence to the mother of Sands, which was regarded as an apology for his crime. From a.d. 1822 till his death in a.d. 1849 he continued to work unweariedly in Basel. His theological position had its starting point in the philosophy of his friend Fries, which he faithfully adhered to down to the end of his life. His friendship with Schleiermacher had also a powerful influence upon him. He too placed religion essentially in feeling, which, however, he associated much more closely with knowledge and will. In the church doctrines he recognised an important symbolical expression of religious truths, and so by the out and out rationalist he was all along sneered at as a mystic. But his chief strength lay in the sharp critical treatment which he gave to the biblical canon and the history of the O.T. and N.T. His commentaries on the whole of the N.T. are of permanent value, and contain his latest thoughts, when he had approached most nearly to positive Christianity. His literary career began in a.d. 1806 with a critical examination of the books of Chronicles. He also wrote on the Psalms, on Jewish history, on Jewish archæology, and made a new translation of the Bible. His Introductions to the O.T. and N.T. have been translated into English.—Winer of Leipzig is best known by his “Grammar of New Testament Greek,” first published in a.d. 1822, of which several English and American translations have appeared, the latest and best that of Dr. Moulton, made in a.d. 1870, from the sixth German edition. He also edited an admirable “Bibl. Reallexicon,” and wrote a work on symbolics which has been translated into English under the title “A Comparative View of the Doctrines and Confessions of the Various Communities of Christendom” (Edin., 1873).—Gesenius of Halle, who died a.d. 1842, has won a high reputation by his grammatical and lexicographical services and as author of a commentary on Isaiah—Hupfeld of Marburg and Halle, who died a.d. 1866, best known by his work in four vols. on the Psalms, in his critical attitude toward the O.T., belonged to the same party.—Hitzig of Zürich and Heidelberg, who died a.d. 1875, far outstripped all the rest in genius and subtlety of mind and critical acuteness. He wrote commentaries on most of the prophets and critical investigations into the O.T. [pg 195] history.—Ewald of GŚttingen, a.d. 1803-1875, whose hand was against every man and every man's hand against him, held the position of recognised dictator in the domain of Hebrew grammar, and uttered oracles as an infallible expounder of the biblical books. In his Journal for Biblical Science, he held an annual auto da fe of all the biblico-theological literature of the preceding year; and, assuming a place alongside of Isaiah and Jeremiah, he pronounced in every preface a prophetic burden against the theological, ecclesiastical, or political ill doers of his time. His exegetical writings on the poetical and prophetical books of the O.T., his “History of Israel down to the Post-Apostolic Age,” and a condensed reproduction of his “Bible Doctrine of God,” under the title: “Revelation, its Nature and Record” and “Old and New Testament Theology,” have all appeared in English translations, and exhibit everywhere traces of brilliant genius and suggestive originality.88
4. Supernaturalism of the older type (§ 171, 8) was now represented by Storr, Reinhard, Planck, Knapp, and Stäudlin. In Württemberg Storr's school maintained its pre-eminence down to a.d. 1830. Neander, Tholuck, and Hengstenberg may be described as the founders and most powerful enunciators of the more recent Pietistic Supernaturalism. Powerfully influenced by Schleiermacher, his colleague in Berlin, Neander, a.d. 1789-1850, exercised an influence such as no other theological teacher had exerted since Luther and Melanchthon. Adopting Schleiermacher's standpoint, he regarded religion as a matter of feeling: Pectus est quod theologum facit. By his subjective pectoral theology he became the father of modern scientific pietism, but it incapacitated him from understanding the longing of the age for the restoration of a firm objective basis for the faith. He was adverse to the Hegelian philosophy no less than to confessionalism. Neander was so completely a pectoralist, that even his criticism was dominated by feeling, as seen in his vacillations on questions of N.T. authenticity and historicity. His “Church History,” of which we have admirable English translations, was an epoch-making work, and his historical monographs were the result of careful original research.89—Tholuck, a.d. 1799-1877, from a.d. 1826 professor at Halle, at first devoted to oriental studies, roused to practical interests by Baron von Kottwitz of Berlin, gave himself with all his wide culture by preaching, [pg 196] lecturing and conversing to lead his students to Christ. His scientific theology was latitudinarian, but had the warmth and freshness of immediate contact with the living Saviour. His most important works are apologetical and exegetical. In his “Preludes to the History of Rationalism” he gives curious glimpses into the scandalous lives of students in the seventeenth century; and he afterwards confessed that these studies had helped to draw him into close sympathy with confessionalism. While always lax in his views of authenticity, he came to adopt a very decided position in regard to revelation and inspiration.—Hengstenberg, a.d. 1802-1869, from a.d. 1826 professor in Berlin, had quite another sort of development. Rendered determined by innumerable controversies, in none of which he abated a single hair's breadth, he looked askance at science as a gift of the Danaides, and set forth in opposition to rationalism and naturalism a system of theology unmodified by all the theories of modern times. Born in the Reformed church and in his understanding of Scripture always more Calvinist than Lutheran, rationalising only upon miracles that seemed to detract from the dignity of God, and in his later years inclined to the Romish doctrine of justification, he may nevertheless claim to be classed among the confessionalists within the union. He deserves the credit of having given a great impulse to O.T. studies and a powerful defence of O.T. books, though often abandoning the position of an apologist for that of an advocate. His “Christology of the Old Testament,” in four vols., “Genuineness of the Pentateuch and Daniel,” three vols., “Egypt and the Books of Moses,” commentaries on Psalms, Ecclesiastes, Ezekiel, the Gospel of John, Revelation, and his “History of the Kingdom of God in the Old Testament,” have all been translated into English.
5. The so called Rational Supernaturalism admits the supernatural revelation in holy scripture, and puts reason alongside of it as an equally legitimate source of religious knowledge, and maintains the rationality of the contents of revelation. Its chief representative was Baumgarten-Crusius of Jena. Of a similar tendency, but more influenced by æsthetic culture and refined feeling, and latterly inclining more and more to the standpoint of “free Protestantism,” Carl Hase, after seven years' work in Tübingen, opened his Jena career in a.d. 1830, which he closed by resigning his professorship in a.d. 1883, after sixty years' labour in the theological chair. In his “Life of Jesus,” first published a.d. 1829, he represents Christ as the ideal man, sinless but not free from error, endowed with the fulness of love and the power of pure humanity, as having truly risen and become the author of a new life in the kingdom of God, of which the very essence is most purely and profoundly expressed in the gospel of the disciple who lay upon the Master's heart. The latest revision [pg 197] of this work, issued in a.d. 1876 under the title “Geschichte Jesu,” treats the fourth gospel as non-Johannnine in authorship and mythical in its contents, and explains the resurrection by the theory of a swoon or a vision. In his “Hutterus Redivivus,” a.d. 1828, twelfth edition 1883, he seeks to set forth the Lutheran dogmatic as Hutter might have done had he lived in these days. This led to the publication of controversial pamphlets in a.d. 1834-1837, which dealt the deathblow to the Rationalismus Vulgaris. His “Church History,” distinguished by its admirable little sketches of leading personalities, was published in a.d. 1834, and the seventh edition of a.d. 1854 has been translated into English.
6. Speculative Theology.—Its founder was Daub, professor at Heidelberg from a.d. 1794 till his death in a.d. 1836. Occupying and writing from the philosophical standpoints of Kant, Fichte, and Schelling successively, he published in a.d. 1816 “Judas Iscariot,” an elaborate discussion of the nature of evil, but passed over in a.d. 1833, with his treatise on dogmatics, to the Hegelian position. He exerted great influence as a professor, but his writings proved to most unintelligible.—Marheineke of Berlin in the first edition of his “Dogmatics” occupied the standpoint of Schelling, but in the second set forth Lutheran orthodoxy in accordance with the formulæ of the Hegelian system.—After Hegel's death in a.d. 1831 his older pupils Rosenkranz and GŚschel sought to enlist his philosophy in the service of orthodoxy. Richter was the first to give offence, by his “Doctrine of the Last Things,” in which he denounced the doctrine of immortality in the sense of personal existence after death. Strauss, a.d. 1808-1874, represented the “Life of Jesus,” in his work of a.d. 1835, as the product of unintentional romancing, and in his “Glaubenslehre” of a.d. 1840, sought to prove that all Christian doctrines are put an end to by modern science, and openly taught pantheism as the residuum of Christianity. Bruno Bauer, after passing from the right to the left Hegelian wing, described the gospels as the product of conscious fraud, and Ludwig Feuerbach, in his “Essence of Christianity,” a.d. 1841, set forth in all its nakedness the new gospel of self-adoration. The breach between the two parties in the school was now complete. Whatever Rosenkranz and Schaller from the centre, and GŚschel and Gabler from the right, did to vindicate the honour of the system, they could not possibly restore the for ever shattered illusion that it was fundamentally Christian. Those of the right fell back into the camps of “the German theology” and the Lutheran confessionalism; while in the latest times the left has no prominent theological representative but Biedermann of Zürich.
7. The Tübingen School.—Strauss was only the advanced skirmisher of a school which was proceeding under an able leader to subject the [pg 198] history of early Christianity to a searching examination. Fred. Chr. Baur of Tübingen, a.d. 1792-1860, almost unequalled among his contemporaries in acuteness, diligence, and learning, a pupil of Schleiermacher and Hegel, devoted himself mainly to historical research about the beginnings of Christianity. In this department he proceeded to reject almost everything that had previously been believed. He denied the genuineness of all the New Testament writings, with the exception of Revelation and the Epistles to the Romans, Galatians, and Corinthians; treating the rest as forgeries of the second century, resulting from a bitter struggle between the Petrine and Pauline parties. This scheme was set forth in a rudimentary form in the treatise on “The So-called Pastoral Epistles of the Apostle Paul,” a.d. 1835. His works, “Paul, the Apostle,” and the “History of the First Three Centuries,” have been translated into English. He had as collaborateurs in this work, Schwegler, Zeller, Hilgenfeld, Volkmar, etc. Ritschl, who was at first an adherent of the school, made important concessions to the right, and in the second edition of his great work, “Die Entstehung d. alt-kath. Kirche,” of a.d. 1857, announced himself as an opponent. Hilgenfeld of Jena, too, marked out new lines for himself in New Testament Introduction and in the estimate of early church doctrine, modifying in various ways the positions of Baur. The labours of this school and its opponents have done signal service in the cause of science.
8. Strauss, who had meanwhile occupied himself with the studies of Von Hutten, Reimarus, and Lessing's “Nathan,” feeling that the researches of the Tübingen school had antiquated his “Life of Jesus,” and stimulated by Renan's “Life of Jesus,” written with French elegance and vivacity, in which he described Christ as an amiable hero of a Galilæan village story, undertook in 1864 a semi-jubilee reproduction of his work, addressed to “the German people.” This was followed by a severe controversial pamphlet, “The Half and the Whole,” in which he lashed the halting attempts of Schenkel as well as the uncompromising conservatism of Hengstenberg. He now pointed out cases of intentional romancing in the gospel narratives; the resurrection rests upon subjective visions of Christ's disciples. His “Lectures on Voltaire” appeared in a.d. 1870, and in a.d. 1872 the most radical of all his books, “The Old and the New Faith,” which makes Christianity only a modified Judaism, the history of the resurrection mere “humbug,” and the whole gospel story the result of the “hallucinations” of the early Christians. The question whether “we” are still Christians he answers openly and honourably in the negative. He has also surmounted the standpoint of pantheism. The religion of the nineteenth century is pancosmism, its gospel the results of natural science with Darwin's discoveries as its bible, its devotional [pg 199] works the national classics, its places of worship the concert rooms, theatres, museums, etc. The most violent attacks on this book came from the Protestantenverein. Strauss had said, “If the old faith is absurd, then the modernized edition of the ‘Protestantenverein’ and the school of Jena is doubly, trebly so. The old faith only contradicts reason, not itself; the new contradicts itself at every point, and how can it then be reconciled with reason?”90
9. The Mediating Theology.—This tendency originated from the right wing of the school of Schleiermacher, still influenced more or less by the pectoralism of Neander. It adopted in dogmatics a more positive and in criticism a more conservative manner. It earnestly sought to promote the interests of the union not merely as a combination for church government, but as a communion under a confessional consensus. Its chief theological organs were the “Studien und Kritiken,” started in a.d. 1828, edited by Ullmann and Umbreit in Heidelberg, afterwards by Riehm and KŚstlin in Halle, and the “Jahrbücher für deutsche Theologie” of Dorner and Leibner, a.d. 1856-1878.—Although the mediating theology sought to sink all confessional differences, denominational descent was more or less traceable in most of its adherents. Its leading representatives from the Reformed church were: Alexander Schweizer, who most faithfully preserved the critical tendency of Schleiermacher, and, in a style far abler and subtler than any other modern theologian, expounded the Reformed system of doctrine in its rigid logical consistency. In his own system he gives a scientific exposition of the evangelical faith from the unionist standpoint, with many pious reflections on Scripture and the confession as well as results of Christian experience, based upon the threefold manifestation of God set forth without miracle in the physical order of the world, in the moral order of the world, and in the historical economy of the kingdom of God.—Sack, one of the oldest and most positive of Schleiermacher's pupils, professor at Bonn, then superintendent at Magdeburg, wrote on apologetics and polemics. Hagenbach of Basel, a.d. 1801-1874, is well-known by his “Theological Encyclopædia and Methodology,” “History of the Reformation,” and “History of the Church in the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries,” all of which are translated into English.—John Peter Lange of Bonn, a.d. 1802-1884, a man of genius, imaginative, poetic, and speculative, with strictly positive tendencies, widely known by his “Life of Christ” and the commentary on Old and New Testament, edited and contributed to by him.—Dr. Philip [pg 200]Schaff may also be named as the transplanter of German theology of the Neander-Tholuck type to the American soil. Born in Switzerland, he accepted a call as professor to the theological seminary of the German Reformed church at Mercersburg in 1843. He soon fell under suspicion of heresy, but was acquitted by the Synod of New York in 1845. In 1869 he accepted a call to a professorship in the richly endowed Presbyterian Union Theological Seminary of New York. Writing first in German and afterwards in English, his works treat of almost all the branches of theological science, especially in history and exegesis. He is also president of several societies engaged in active Christian work.
10. Among those belonging originally to the Lutheran church were Schleiermacher's successor in Berlin, Twesten, whose dogmatic treatise did not extend beyond the doctrine of God, a faithful adherent of Schleiermacher's right wing on the Lutheran side; Nitzsch, professor in Bonn a.d. 1822-1847, and afterwards of Berlin till his death in a.d. 1868, best known by his “System of Christian Doctrine,” and his Protestant reply to MŚhler's “Symbolism,” a profound thinker with a noble Christian personality, and one of the most influential among the consensus theologians. Julius Müller of Halle, a.d. 1801-1878, if we except his theory of an ante-temporal fall, occupied the common doctrinal platform of the confessional unionists. His chief work, “The Christian Doctrine of Sin,” is a masterpiece of profound thinking and original research. Ullmann, a.d. 1796-1865, professor in Halle and Heidelberg, a noble and peace-loving character, distinguished himself in the domain of history by his monograph on “Gregory Nazianzen,” his “Reformers before the Reformation,” and most of all by his beautiful apologetical treatise on the “Sinlessness of Jesus.”—Isaac Aug. Dorner, a.d. 1809-1884, born and educated in Württemberg, latterly professor in Berlin, applied himself mainly to the elaborating of Christian doctrine, and gave to the world, in his “Doctrine of the Person of Christ,” in a.d. 1839, a work of careful historical research and theological speculation. The fundamental ideas of his Christology are the theory favoured by the “German” theology generally of the necessity of the incarnation even apart from sin (which Müller strongly opposed), and the notion of the archetypal Christ, the God-Man, as the collective sum of humanity, in whom “are gathered the patterns of all several individualities.” His “System of Christian Doctrine” formed the copestone of an almost fifty years' academical career. Christ's virgin birth is admitted as the condition of the essential union in Him of divinity and humanity; but the incarnation of the Logos extends through the whole earthly life of the Redeemer; it is first completed in his exaltation by means of his resurrection; it was therefore an operation of the Logos, as principle of all divine movement, extra [pg 201]carnem. His “System of Christian Ethics” was edited after his death by his son.91—Richard Rothe, a.d. 1799-1867, appointed in a.d. 1823 chaplain to the Prussian embassy at Rome, where he became intimately acquainted with Bunsen. In a.d. 1828 he was made ephorus at the preachers' seminary of Wittenberg, and afterwards professor in Bonn and Heidelberg. Rothe was one of the most profound thinkers of the century, equalled by none of his contemporaries in the grasp, depth, and originality of his speculation. Though influenced by Schleiermacher, Neander, and Hegel, he for a long time withdrew like an anchoret from the strife of theologians and philosophers, and took up a position alongside of Oetinger in the chamber of the theosophists. His mental and spiritual constitution had indeed much in common with that great mystic. In his first important work, “Die Anfänge der chr. Kirche,” he gave expression to the idea that in its perfected form the church becomes merged into the state. The same thought is elaborated in his “Theological Ethics,” a work which in depth, originality, and conclusiveness of reasoning is almost unapproached, and is full of the most profound Christian views in spite of its many heterodoxies. In his later years he took part in the ecclesiastical conflicts in Baden (§ 196, 3) with the Protestantenverein (§ 180, 1), and entered the arena of public ecclesiastical life.92—Beyschlag of Halle, in his “Christologie d. N. T.,” a.d. 1866, carried out Schleiermacher's idea of Christ as only man, not God and man but the ideal of man, not of two natures but only one, the archetypal human, which, however, as such is divine, because the complete representation of the divine nature in the human. From this standpoint, too, he vindicates the authenticity of John's Gospel, and from Romans ix.-xi. works out a “Pauline Theodicy.”—Hans Lassen Martensen, a.d. 1808-1884, professor at Copenhagen, Bishop of Zealand and primate of Denmark, with high speculative endowments and a considerable tincture of theosophical mysticism, has become through his “Christian Dogmatics,” “Christian Ethics,” in three vols., etc., of a thoroughly Lutheran type, one of the best known theologians of the century.
11. Among Old Testament exegetes the most distinguished are: Umbreit, a.d. 1795-1860, of Heidelberg, who wrote from the supernaturalist standpoint, influenced by Schleiermacher and Herder, commentaries on Solomon's writings and those of the prophets, and on Job; Bertheau of GŚttingen, of Ewald's school, wrote historico-critical and philological commentaries on the historical books; and [pg 202] Dillmann, Hengstenberg's successor in Berlin, specially distinguished for his knowledge of the Ethiopic language and literature, has written critical commentaries on the Pentateuch and Job.—Among New Testament exegetes we may mention: Lücke of GŚttingen, known by his commentary on John's writings; Bleek, the able New Testament critic and commentator on the Epistle to the Hebrews; Meyer, a.d. 1800-1873, most distinguished of all, whose “Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament,” begun in a.d. 1832, in which he was aided by Huther, Lunemann, and Düsterdieck, is well-known in its English edition as the most complete exegetical handbook to the New Testament; Weiss of Kiel and Berlin, author of treatises on the doctrinal systems of Peter and of John, “The Biblical Theology of the New Testament,” “Life of Christ,” “Introduction to New Testament,” revises and rewrites commentaries on Mark, Luke, John, and Romans, in the last edition of the Meyer series.—A laborious student in the domain of New Testament textual criticism was Constant. von Tischendorff of Leipzig, a.d. 1815-1874, who ransacked all the libraries of Europe and the East in the prosecution of his work. The publication of several ancient codices, e.g. the Cod. Sinaiticus, a present from the Sinaitic monks to the czar on the thousandth anniversary of the Russian empire in a.d. 1862, the Cod. Vaticanus N.T., a new edition of the LXX., the most complete collection of New Testament apocrypha and pseudepigraphs, and finally a whole series of editions of the New Testament (from a.d. 1841-1873 there appeared twenty-four editions, of which the Editio Octava Major of 1872 is the most complete in critical apparatus), are the rich and ripe fruits of his researches. A second edition, compared throughout with the recensions of Tregelles and Westcott and Hort, was published by Von Gebhardt, and a third volume of Prolegomena was added by C. R. Gregory. As a theologian he attached himself, especially in later years, to the Lutheranism of his Leipzig colleagues, and on questions of criticism and introduction took up a strictly conservative position as seen in his well known tract, “When were our Gospels written?”
12. Among the university teachers of his time John Tob. Beck, a.d. 1804-1878, assumed a position all his own. After a pastorate of ten years he began in a.d. 1836 his academical career in Basel, and went in a.d. 1843 to Tübingen, where he opposed to the teaching of Baur's school a purely biblical and positive theology, with a success that exceeded all expectations. A Württemberger by birth, nature, and training, he quit