« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »
The word in its roof, dever means to deliver, nor is it possible that it shonld. To deliver is, to free from, to liberate, to rescue, but never is the Hebrew verb 90 used in this mantier. Nir. Bellamy's ignorance or wilful perversion of the word, wilt appear on an examination of the passages which he has cited in his note. Deut. xxiii. 15, “ Thou shalt not deliver up (VDH ) "to bis master the servant who has escaped from him." Here the verb 70 is related, not to the liberty, but to the bondage of the servant, since a deprivation of freedom would be the consequence of his being delivered up to his former inaster, which is therefore expressly forbidden. Josh. xx. 5, “ They shall not “ deliver up (120 s)) the man-slayer into the hand of the « blood avenger.” The safety of the homicide depended not on kris being delivered up to the blood-avenger, but on bis being preserved from his bands. 1 Sam. xxiv. 18, “When the Lord
bad delivered mé "930 into thine hand, thou didst not kill “ me." Here Saul acknowledges that his life was in peril in the cave which David brad surrounded, which is assuredly a very different setise from that which Mr. Bellamy puts upon the word 70: it can only mean in this passage that an opportunity was placed in the hands of David of putting Saul to death. xxvi. 8, is Then said Abishai to David, God hath delivered (120) thine “enemy into thy hand this day: now therefore let me smite “ him." Did Abishai mean to represent Saul as not in danger? 2 Sam. xviii. 26, “ God liath delivered up (900) the
men thát lift up their hand against my lord the king;"—-i. e. has put them as enemies in thy power. Job xvi. 11, God bas " delivered me up (137720") to the ungodly.” Amos i. 9, “ They " delivered up (OT204) the whole captivity to Edom;"' i. e. put them into the power of their most bitter and cruel enemies ; very different from conferring freedom upon them! These passages (there is an error in the reserence to 1 Sam. xvii. 4) are the whole of Mr. Bellamy's proofs that means--to deliver; it must be apparent to every one who inspects them, that they are directly opposed to his assertion,-that they are nothing else than witnesses against himn. The verb 20 means to enclose, to shut in ; it is therefore correctly rendered in the Coinmon Version; it cannot be translated 'he delivered,' although there are passages in which its meaning may be properly expressed by be deli
« vered up.'
(to be concluded in the next Number.)
Art. IV. Lectures on Scripture Doctrines. By William Bengo
Collyer, D.D. F.A.S. &c. 8vo. pp. 731. Price 145. London,
1818. COMMON justice demands that in estimating the merits of
a work, the pretensions of the Author, as well as the particular circumstances under the influence of which it has been produced, should be taken into impartial consideration. If the critic, refusing or neglecting to make such a reference, will institute all those trying comparisons which the naked wording of a title-page may suggest, useful and respectable writers will be exposed to suffer the most flagrant injustice. Nor is this the whole of the evil. The tendency of such an undistinguishing severity, if it become prevalent, is, to make the public exclusively and very disadvantageously dependent, for its supply of reading, either upon shallow, self-sufficient pretenders, or upon that which is much too rare a thing to be allowed a place in a calculation of probabilities,-we mean, courageous merit of the highest order. If nothing may be tolerated but works of original and enduring excellence, none will write, but
the few who know that they can sustain a merciless ordeal, and 1 those whom the infatuation of vanity has rendered insensible
to danger. An enlightened criticism will ever be anxious to afford the amplest shadow of protection to that numerous and indispensable class of writers, who may be designated as the day-labourers on the field of literature. Let them be admonished and excited, but never frighted from their occupation by the lofty tones of an unbending exaction.
If, by any means, the sum of that good which is effected through the instrumentality of books, could be ascertained, and its particulars investigated, the result of the process would, very probably, be of a nature to furnish at once a flattering stimulus to the ob 7o106 of the writing world, and a wholesome check to the fond admiration of superior talent. Men are ever best taught by their peers. He is perhaps the most efficiently endowed for the business of instruction, who, while indebted for his distinction chiefly to the possession of those extrinsic, and, as we are too apt to call them, insignificant qualifications, which are found to open a way of happy access to the minds of mankind, is, in intellectual respects, most nearly on a level with those whom he addressess.
The present are, in fact, reading times : books, and new books too, must be had. The writer, therefore, who furnishes the public with an honest seven, or ten, or fourteen shillingsworth of barmless and well-intentioned letter-press, has done a good work, and is entitled to its thanks : the least which can be conceded to him, is-impunity. The protection which we would extend to such a writer, is grounded upon an obvious and important distinction, an attention to which seems essential on the one side, to the permanent interests of literature, and on the other, to the present advantage and accommodation of the reading public. This distinction regards writers as divided into two classes: first, those who must be considered as giving themselves to the toil of saying again what has been said a hundred times before, for the benefit of those who would not bear it at all, unless presented to them under the feint of novelty; and secondly, those who would choose to be treated as professing to give the world something which it shall esteem worth the trouble of preserving. With the former class of writers, negative excellencies, and an aim at usefulness, should be allowed to purchase much of indulgence. Io dealing with the latter, mercy has no place. Whenever, in the expression of opinion with respect to those who pretend to occupy the rank of original writers, a drowsy good-natured indulgence shall prevail over a rigid and well-informed criticism, not only will works worthy to be transmitted to posterity cease to be produced, but those who write will quickly become too indolent even to set off their inanity with the cheap graces of expression. When the primary causes under the influence of which the first great works in a language are produced, bave long ceased to operate, if any thing can preserve the spirit of high-aimed and laborious effort, it must be the rigid administration of literary justice. Very many books however are published, of wbich it would be as unjust to speak in terms of contempt, as it would be absurd to treat them with the air of a grave, analysing examination, or to bring them for a moment into comparison with works that rank among our permanent literature. "A writer's reasonings may be flimsy, his research superficial, and his learning little more than is sufficient to secure him against the bazard of a blunder, in footing his pages with scraps of Latin, Greek, and Hebrew; yet, it must be remembered, that profound thinking, and exquisite sentiment, and solid reasoning, and laborious research, and real learning, are not essential requisites to the ordinary instruction of mankind, any more than they are to the attainment of a wide and continued popularity. Possessing only a very moderate share of any of these endowments, a man may do well to write, and to print ; and if he does well to write and to print, it follows, that critics are to be blamed, who will ever be taunting and teazing him with the reproach of his mediocrity ; while, as we have already hipted, this very mediocrity, perhaps to a greater extent than they are apt to imagine, constitutes his most efficient and essential qualification for general usefulness.
It is, however, evident, that a writer may forfeit bis claims to the leenity and protection which we would recommend, by his
own absurd pretensions. The case may also occur, in which the advantage may be torn from him, although it has by no means been justly forfeited. Let it, for example, be supposed, that, in an age remarkable for its gaping and prurient levity, an extensive popularity shall be acquired, which does not seem to have for its foundation materials of the most solid description. Let it be supposed, that the concurrence of heterogeneous causes, derived from accident, and fashion, and attractions of a rather trivial order, operates to such an extent as even to cast a shade of difficulty upon that standing prediction delivered by our Lord to his servants, “ If ye were of the World, the « World would love his own; but because ye are not of the “ World, therefore the World hateth you.' Let it be further supposed, that this popularity, by alluring, (like the lyre of Orpheus,) the beasts of the forest, and the wild boar out of the wood, and the herd of swine from the mountain, around the seat of Christian instruction, is trampling down on all sides the fence that divides the Church of Christ from an ungodly world, and is facilitating the attempt to unite a dissipated life with an attendance upon what is called an evangelical ministry. Let, we say, such a case be imagined, implying, on the part of the individual, neither evil design, nor positive ground of reprehension; it is evident that it presents a rather trying exercise of self-denial and forbearing silence, to those individuals whose discernment and whose impressions of serious realities, oblige them to estimate things according to their true nature and intrinsic value. Such persons are subjected to a strong temp
tation bastily to remove what they believe to be but an attenua(ted glitter. In most cases, however, it will be well to let a
cbaritable reserve prevail over the gratification of a perhaps malignant discrimination. There is an especial call for this wise concealment of private opinion, where an amiable disposition, and a tolerable moderation, and an aim at usefulness, and a readiness to profit by admonition, have all survived the cperation of peculiarly disadvantageous circumstances,
A comparison of the present volume with the earlier of Dr. Collyer's publications, will evince that the intervening years have not passed over him in vain. His good sense and matured judgement have prevailed, to a considerable extent, in retrenching the exuberances of his style. It is a great thing to have learned the excellent and obvious principle, that glittering faults are still but faults, although they glitter. The crisis of trial for a young writer, is, when he becomes convinced that the decorations, upon the nice finishing of which he has hitherto exhausted the forces of his mind, must be exposed to the highest ridicule if they are made to serve as the disguises of emptiness or poverty, and that however highly they may be
wrought, they are appropriate only when trebly redeemed by the preciousness of the substance to which they are attached. When this conviction takes place in a mind of superior order, it will excite a redoubled activity in all the laborious courses of self-improvement. Future productions will evidence, that the important ends of writing have taken the precedence they deserve, over the paltry arts of producing effect. If, bowever, the talent, or, as it should perhaps be termed, the knack of inventing and finishing embellishments, constitutes the only or the main distinction of the intellectual endowments; should admonitjons or mortifications succeed in convincing the individual of the worthlessness, in themselves, of these attractions; nothing can take place but a sad, conscious descent, step by step, into the drowsy regions of unrelieved commonness. As the judgement of such a writer improves, bis popularity will decrease : if he continue to write, each successive volume, in the same proportion as it is less faulty, will be more dull than its predecessor.
The Lectures on Scripture Doctrines, are eighteen in number, and are entitled as follows; The Authority, and Claims of Revelation. The Being, Attributes, and Unity of God. The Trinity. The Divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ. The Deity and Influences of the Holy Spirit. · The Fall, and its Consequences. The Atonement. Election and Adoption. Justi. fication. Regeneration. Salvation through Faith. Sanctification. Perseverance. Providence. The Resurrection of the Dead. Future Punishment. Glorification. T'he Duty of Submitting System to the Bible. Dr. C. thus states the plan he has adopted, in treating his several subjects.
The Lectures will, in general, consist of three parts. The first, will embrace the amount of Scripture testimony on each subject, with such criticisms on the passages as may be necessary : the second, will recapitulate the reasonings of the Sacred writers, and deduce the doctrines by inference: the third, will be devoted to the practical results of each principle.'
Dr. Collyer's former publications have been so generally read, (and we presume so far upon the extensive circulation of the present work,) that it seems almost superfluous to occupy the reader with quotations. Iest, however, any disappointment should be felt, we shall make two or three extracts. The following is the conclusion of the first Lecture, On the Authority 6 and Claims of Revelation.'
• Revelation proceeds upon it's own authority to make distinct statements ou subjects incapable of explanation ; and it limits our ingraries accordingly. This is the sentiment of the text : “ The secret á things belong unto the Lord our God; but those things which are “ revealed belong unto us, and to our children for ever, that we may