Full Text for CTM Theological Observer 4-7 (Text)

<1rnurnrbta mQtnlngtral 6tutll1y Continuing LEHRE UND VVEHRE MAGAZIN FUER EV.-LUTH. HOMlLETlK THEOLOGICAL QUARTERLY-THEOLOGICAL MONTHLY Vol. IV July, 1933 No.7 CONTENTS Page The Oxford ltovement a Hundred Years Ago. W. Arndt ••• 481 Wie ist denen zu begegnen, die Wundergaben, besondera neue OBenbarungen, vorgeben. o. Luebke. • . . • . • .. ••• 497 Objective Justification. Th. EDlelder. • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •• 507 Kein Modus Agendi vor der Bekehrung. J. T. Mueller •••• , li17 Die Rauptschriften Luthers in chronologischer Reihenfolge &26 Dispositionen ueber die altkirohliche Epistelreihe ....... &28 Miscellanea ........................................ &36 Theological Observer. - Xirchlioh-Zeitgeschichtliches .... 539 Book Review. - Literatur ........................... 5&3 Ein Predlpi- __ nlellt alIein "'''"'''', aIao da3I er die 8chale untenreUe. wte sle reehte Obriatea. lO11en ~in. IOndem auell daneben de Woelten tile',..".. daa ale die 8chale nlcht aJlI!'eifeD und mit falecher Lehre ftrfueh... und Irrtum ein· fuehren. - Lvew. Eo ist kein DiDI. das die Leate mehr bei der Klrche behaelt denn die gute Predigt. - ApoIoSl~, Are. ~. If the trumpet gift an UIlC!enain 1IOIIIId, who sball prepare himself to the battle f 1 0.,.. ~,8. Published for the Ev. Luth. Synod of Missouri, Ohio, and Other States CONCOBD:rA. PUBLISHING HOUSE, St. Louis, Mo. Theological Observer. - ~irc9{ic9'.8eitgeid;id;tlid)e~. 539 Theological Observer. - SfhdjIidj~geitgefdjtdjtlidje~. I. .2(mrrtka. ~u~ her 6l)nobe. SDie meticlj±e au~ ben betfcljiebenen SDifttiften ber ®lJnobe aeigen, ba13 bie ~rlieit bes £j®rrn tto~ ber "liofen Beiten" bortoads~ geljt. 9lur in e i n em SDiftrift ljat man bie jaljrliclje ®lJnobalberfammlung ausfallen Iaff en; im iilitigen ift bas mebiirfnis filr ben ®egen bief er Bu~ fanunenrunfte fo gro13, baf3 man fie in getooljn±et )!Betfe ljart, toenn man ficlj baliei auclj ber gro13±en ®parfamfeit oeflei13igi. ~us bielen ®egenben fom~ men inacljricljten, ba13 bie lmiffionsgelegenljeiten gerabe je~t feqr giinftig finb, fo ba13, toie a. ~. in ~otoa unb in IDhnnefota, neue ®tationen eroffnet toorben finb. ~n lminnefo±a ljalien ficlj feit ~nfang bes ~a!jres atoolf ~arocljien felliftiinbig etflar±, toas unter ben llmftiinben feqr anedennens~ toed ift. ~uclj ift ilU ertoaqnen, baf3 bie meiften lmiffionare aUf bem ®eliie± ber ~nneren lmiffion ±ro~ ber ftad rebuaierten ®eljarter treuliclj toeiter~ arlieiten unb mit @ottes £jHfe burcljaufommen gebenfen. ~uclj bom fernen )!Befien, bon ber Shlfte bes ®tiIIen Oaeans, fommen erfreuIiclje ~ericljte . ®o !jat ruta!iclj eine ®emeinbe in OaHanb i!jte neue ~rclje eintoei!jen biir~ fen , unb im fiibIicljen 5teile bes ®taates liemiiljt ficlj dne ®emeinbe n aclj ber anbern, o!jne £jiIfe aus ber lmiHionsfaffe fetiig au toerben. - SDie inacljrlcljten aus ben canabifcljen SDiftriften Iauten aum 5teil feljr etfreuIiclj, ba bie ~tebigt bes )!Bodes bie! {Yrucljt fcljaft±, aum 5teH alier auclj fe!jr lie±tiilienb, ba manclje ber neuen ~nfieb!er butclj bie fcljtoeren Beiten feljr ljad lietroffen toorben finb. )!Bit Iefen: "You will readily understand the plight of those who went on the homestead without any capital just be- fore the present period of depression set in. They have never been able to take a crop off their land, nor have they the necessary seed to sow in at least a sufficient acreage for feed this spring. They have no pota- toes, many have very little clothing, yes, many have not even bread to ' eat. They cannot in many instances apply to the Government for relief, since they would immediately become subject to deportation." - S2!us lmicljigan fommt Die macljricljt, baf3 ber {yrauenljiIfsberein, ber ficlj bet ®tabt~ minion in SDetroit getoibme± ljat, in lOlilicljet unb enetgifcljer )!Betfe biefe§ ilniHionstoed fotbed. Oljne ®elliftanbigfeit au oeanfprucljen, nimm± ficlj Diefer ~krein unter ber 2eitung ber ®emeinben Diefer 2ieoesatoeit an, fo ba13 betattige !Betbinbungen anbern aum !BorliHb bienen fonnen. - ®inige SDifttifte !jalien bie )!Beife, ba13 fie regelma13ig iilier bie ®efcljicljte ber au iljnen geljorenben @emeinben lieticljten. SDies toitb in fpiiteten ~a!)ten bem ®efcljicljt5forfcljer feljr aUftatten fommen. ~n ®iibamerifa tuibmen me SDiftriftsliICrttet fonberliclj ber ®cljurfrage bie! maum, unb bie S2!rlieit geljt ftetig bottoatis. SDet ,,~ircljenlioteU fotoolj1 toie bas ,,$~itcljenlirattU liring! feinen 2efern gebiegene ~difer. unb man fie!)±, ba13 bie fitcljIiclje ~tlieit in enetgifcljer, aiellietou13tet unb fonferbatiber )!Beife gefilljd toitb. ~. Unionism. - The Lutheran Ohurch Qua1-terly, in its issue of January, 1933, carries an article by Dr. N. R. Mehlhorn of the U. L. C. on this im- portant topic. We quote some of the praragraphs which we consider of / 540 Theological Observer. - .Ritdj1icf:J~.8eitllefdjidjmcf:Je!l. special importance. Speaking of the situation in his church-body, he says: - "On the subject of pulpit-fellowship, in the main, Lutheran pulpits are occupied by Lutheran preachers. There are occasions in the United Lu- theran Church when a speaker from some other communion is heard by a congregation. We have a few clergymen whose interdenominational re- lationships or community ties lead to exchanges with other preachers. But when our people have been habitually instructed prior to confirmation and after it from the pulpit, they are not misled by a sermon nor beguiled from their church thereby any more than through a book, a magazine, or a radio address. The fact is that all our pulpits are maintained to serve Lutheran congregations and for the extension of our Lutheran influence and membership. "Our altars are for Lutheran communicants. Any Lutheran is eligible to receive the body and blood of Christ under the form of bread and wine administered as our Lord prescribed and as the Lutheran Church has prac- tised, provided he comes properly prepared to receive it. And his prepara- tion for this individualization of our Lord's grace of forgiveness and strengthening of faith is not conditioned by any other requirements than those set forth in the gospels and in the epistles of St. Paul. The attitude of the United Lutheran Church on the whole subject of organic union of Protestant churches was declared at the second convention of the United Lutheran Church at Washington, D. C., in 1920. It will be remembered that thc Interchurch World Movement had at that time a great reputa- tion in this country. Strong pressure was brought to bear upon all divi- sions of Protestantism in the direction of comhination. If a group had any tendencies toward unionism worthy of an indictment for that fallacy, these would have made themselves apparent at that time." Then follows the 1920 declaration of the U. L. C. on the subject of unionism, which we need not reprint here. With sadness we notice that Dr. Mehlhorn has no word of criticism, but rather a word of excuse, for those pastors of his Church "whose interdenominational relationships or community ties lead to exchanges with other preachers." That such a course helps to increase the popularity of these pastors in the community at large we do not doubt. Altogether different is the question whether their course is pleasing to God and in keeping with the principles laid down in His Word. It is our conviction that what they do betrays a cul- pable indifference toward the warning "A little leaven leaventh the whole lump." After having quoted the declaration mentioned ahove, Dr. Mehlhorn continues: - "As a part of the same declaration the United Lutheran Church went on record 'concerning cooperative movements among the Protestant churches.' After stating that 'it is our earnest desire to cooperate with other church-bodies in all such works as can be regarded as works of serving love, through which the faith of Christians finds expression,' the condition was laid down that such cooperation should not involve 'the surrender of our interpretation of the Gospel, the denial of conviction, or the suppression of our testimony to what we hold to be the truth.' The Theological Observer. - SHrd)ltd):,seitgefd)id)t1id)t§. 541 General Body cited its constitution, in which the principle is laid down that no synod, conference, or board, or any official representative thereof shall have the power of independent affiliation with general organizations and movements. "It would seem conclusively indicated by the policies and declarations of the United Lutheran Church that whatever bases there might have been in past decades on which to rest a fear of unionism, these have disappeared." We wish we could share this optimism. Again and again the daily press reports unionistic services in which U. L. C. pastors and congrega- tions participate, at times services featuring addresses or sermons by men who antagonize the very heart of the Gospel, the teaching of redemption through the blood of Christ. If they are taken to task for this fraternizing, we do not become aware of it. As long as such practises continue, we can- not absolve the U. L. C. of the charge of unionism. A . .Qxford MO~:n;wlt a.nd S~ci_::~~1llo..- The following references to the / Oxford Group Movement are taken from the World To·morrow, a socialist V paper, of which Reinhold Niebuhr, H. N. Brailsford, and Norman Thomas are editors or contributing editors. The issue of May contains an article by Irene Gates on "The Oxford Group and SOCIal Results." li.;xcerpts might iI' -est the readers. "Are we to get down to the causes of poverty and economic disaster and cooperatively build together a family society based on the mind of Jesus?" "Many of us have discovered in the Oxford Group a personal experience of Christ (especially His call to repentance), which has given us a new and deeper scnse of individual and social sin and the realization of new direction and power for the accomplishment of his social objectives." Reference is made to the "sharing," which strikes at the injustice and short-sight~dness of the economic situation. The sharing is said to involve the upbuilding of characters of down-and-outers, of finding work or feeding them, etc. The movement is expected to remove racial differences and prejudices. "As more of us of all races come into a similar experience of Christ,. we are confidently expecting the same transformations of racial attitudes in this country. . .. We are hoping that by the multiplication of people in groups everywhere with a vital experience of Christ there will be produced a nation of peace-minded men and women." The experience of the reconciliation or extinction of war hatred of a German and an English woman are related and then: "Only the flood-tide of the Spirit of God can wash away such deeply rooted sins of national hatred and resentment." "Like all people who listen for the voice of God, we are discovering that He does speak to us about "little details' as well as great decisions, that frequently fresh insight and action grow from guidance in 'small' mat- ters. . .. Gradually we come to see the world as Jesus must have seen it - a world where God is kind and where we are His stewards. All things that men call our possessions are really His - our money, time, friends, home, work. Shortly, if we continue in His companionship, our relation to our fellows as well as to God is changed." Irene Gates is a physician on the staff of the Cornell-New York Hos- pital Clinic. F. E. MAYER. 542 Theological Observer. - .Ritd)lid)~.seitgefd)i.d)md)e!l. More Light on puchmani§m. -The Moody Bible Institute Monthly for March, 1933, has the following editorial on the Oxford Group: - "Here is part of a conversation which I had with one of these special missionaries (one of the men). 'For what reason did Christ die?' 'To' tell you the truth, I don't know myself.' 'Has the Group any list of sins?' 'No, we have no list of sins.' 'Would you call adultery and murder sins?' 'Only if God told you they were.' 'What would you do if you had a strong- desire to commit adultery with another man's wife or to murder some one?' 'I would go to God and get guidance about it.' 'You mean that you would pray to God and ask Him to show you whether it was right or wrong?' 'No, I should not pray about it. I should just wait for God to give me guidance about it.' 'And how would God give you this guidance?' 'I should get a strong impression what I should do.' 'And if this strong impression were that you should murder that man, would you do it?' 'I should!'- How true are Christ's words spoken when on earth: 'If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!' Matt. 6, 23." "The Omt01'd (}roup Movement (Buohmanism) , Is It at (fad or of Satan? by J. C. Brown, Pickering and Inglis, London, England. This 'ism,' sometimes called the Oxford Group Movement, reminds one of Christian Science in two marked particulars. One is its attraction for 'society' people, the well-dressed and well-to-do, and the other is its aversion to the blood atonement. These two things, if there were no others, were sufficient to show how far it is removed from 'l!'irsl;..century Christian Fellowship,' as a Presbyterian divine designated it at the last quadrennial of the- Federal Council. "That stalwart defender of the faith Dr. A. C. Gaebelein writes us that. he is making a careful study of the movement in order to expose it in Our Hope. But meanwhile we would recommend the book of J. C. Brown, Head Master at Oxford University, who is quoted in Out tram the Loat in this issue. It is a paper-covered volume, quite inexpensive, and obtain- able for twenty-five cents from the Bible Institute Colportage Association, 843 North Wells Street, Chicago. We would also advise our readers to send one cent to Rev. Harold T. Commons, 17 South Marion Avenue, Vent- nor, Atlantic City, N. J., for a copy of his four-page leaflet entitled Buck- mam8m. This is 'a frank statement by a former adherent, who gives full first-hand information as to the character of the movement.' "We cannot bring this editorial note to a better conclusion, however, than by quoting the following paragraph from a personal letter of Colonel E. N. Sanctuary, New York:- "'For some months I have been acquiring data on this cult, with the result that I am now speaking against it. They have four tenets of faith- guidance, loyalty, sharing, and Christology. They claim their guidance is that of the Holy Spirit; but it is significant that unbelievers are wel- comed to their fellowship. Loyalty is to Buchman or to the Group. But "sharing" is sin-sharing, and many writers speak of this as a "sex-obses- sion"; for it deals with this subject in mixed groups. Brown asks this question: "Is it to the glory of God (1 Cor. 10, 31) that a married man with a family should publicly confess to a mixed audience that, without Theological Observer. - ~ircf)1icf)~3eit\1efd)id)tricf)e~. 543 :his wife's knowledge, he had been unfaithful to her?" Brown knows 'whereof he writes, for it was he who sponsored Buchman when he first introduced his work in England.''' Baptists and Readjustment. - One of our exchanges submits these thoughts on what the Baptists may be expected to do in view of the in- 'creasing embarrassment of their exchequer: - "Under the stress of the financial depression Baptists of the North are passing through a period of self-scrutiny and -criticism that is likely to result in important changes in both organization and outlook. The young president of the Northern convention, C. Oscar Johnson, as a result of his contact with the churches in repeated tours across the continent during his term in offce, has definitely recommended the amalgamation of the two denominational Foreign Mission societies, the general and the women' s, and of the two similar societies working in the Home Mission field. This is in the interest of both economy and efficiency. A committee on denomina- tional objectives, under the leadership of Dr. A. W. Beaven, has been en- gaged during the year in a constructive bit of work, attempting to view the denominational task as a whole and to formulate its aims so definitely that waste motion and the duplication of effort may be eliminated. This 'committee suggesis that all organizations doing Home Mission work be coordinated in a single agency. It recommends also that the denomination seriously commit itself to cooperation with other denominations in small urban and rural areas. 'The rural church,' the committee says, 'faces either cooperation or extinction. Thirty thousand rural churches have disappeared in the last thirty years. Must we not have a cooperative program with ,others which will provide a constructive service to these churches rather than continue our present competitive program, which leads to waste, irritation, and ultimate extinction?' This is rather a novel note in official Baptist circles, where the prevailing idea has been that the best interests {)f the kingdom of God demand 'a Baptist church in every community.' Whether these drastic suggestions are to be taken seriously will appear at the convention in Washington week after next. In any case they are indications of the working of a yeasty ferment in the Baptist bread-mixer. Tradition has credited conservation to angels and a love of change to fools, but it is certain that in church circles it is commonly the Christian states- men who rush in where ecclesiastical politicians fear to tread." - The writer evidently hopes that the depression will aid the cause of unionism. God forbid! A. The Physical Factors Operating in the Flood. - An article in the April, 1933, number of the Theologioal Forud cont:ins this paragraph, a welcome addition to a pastor's files: - "Just how the waters were brought upon the lands we are not told. Numerous ways have been suggested. It has been proposed by Flood geol- ogists that a sudden shifting of the earth's axis began the catastrophe and that it was continued by constant repetitions of this operation. God kept halting the speed of the earth's rotation, putting the breaks on suddenly and sending the oceans through the wind-shield, so to speak. Some have suggested that the ocean bottoms were raised and lowered and raised and lowered. In the simplest and gentlest fashion that the waters of the ocean I V 544 Theological Observer. - ~itd)1id)'8eitgeid)id)md)e~. could have been brought upon the land, that is, by a slow and gradual raising of the bottom, it is impossible but that there were immense streams and currents sweeping over the earth, unless we assume for no apparent reason that the sun and the moon did not at that time exert the same gravitational effects upon the waters of the ocean which they do now. Those of us who live beside the sea know how the tides, driven by the gravitational power of the sun and moon, come into the bays and river mouths like immense floods and flow out again twice a day, and know it would be impossible for the ocean to encroach upon the land till .all was drown eel without far more immense currents sweeping back and forth up its valleys and over its hills." The Presbyterian Mission Board and Modern Unbelief. - Prot- estant circles are deeply stirred by the discussion of Christian missions .... among the Presbyterians (Northern). We present the story as told by the CMistian Oentu1"Y:- "The Board of Foreign Missions of the Presbyterian Church in the U. S. it. is deeply involved in Modernist and antichristian propaganda, and its appeal to Bible-believing Christians is a misleading appeal," accord- ing to Dr. J. Gresham 1fachen, professor of New Testament in Westminster Theological Seminary, Phil",,,"v.phia.. ::n f .... ~v, he =-_ prL.~_':' hir. ~2:Jtrgee against the board: 1) that the board, in officially commenting on the report of the appraisal commission of the laymen's inqui:q utterly failed to condemn in any definite way the attack upon "the very heart of the Christian Teligion, which was the chief substance of the report"; 2) that Mrs. Pearl S. Buck, who has appeared in Harper's Magazine and in the Christian Oentury with articles expressing warm agreement with the report and thoroughgoing opposition to "the historic Christia.n faith," is a mis- sionary of the Presbyterian Church, and that the board, in retaining her on the roll of missionaries, is seeking in quite unjustifiable fashion to obtain funds both from those who agree with her and from those who hold to "the historic faith"; 3) that the candidate secretary of the board is a signer of the Auburn affirmation; 4) that the candidate department of the board has carried on anti evangelical propaganda through the books that it has recommended as devotional reading to a thousand young men and women considering missionary service; 5) that the staff of the board in an offcial communication has commended, as though it were Christian evangelism, the religious propaganda of the radicals Dr. Sherwood Eddy and Toyohiko Kagawa; 6) that the board is cooperating with union enter- prises in China which have been implicated in antichristian activities of the most thoroughgoing kind. At the January 24 meeting of the presbytery of New Brunswick, at Dutch Neck, N. J., Dr. Machen presented an overture, asking the general assembly of the Presbyterian Church "to take care to elect to positions on the Board of Foreign Missions only persons who are fully aware of the danger in which the Church stands and who are determined to insist upon such verities as the full truthfulness of Scripture, the virgin birth of our Lord, His substitutionary death to satisfy divine justice, Ris bodily resurrection, and His miracles as being necessary to the message which every missionary under our Church shan proclaim," and also asking the general assembly to give certain instructions to the board. Theological Observer. - ~itd)lid)'Seitgefd)id)tlid)e~. 545 The proposed overture was considered at the April 11 meeting of the presbytery in the Fourth Presbyterian Church, Trenton, N. J. By invita- tion, Dr. Robert Eo Speer, senior secretary of the board, was present, whom Dr. Machen regards as "the most eloquent of that optimistic view regard- ing the present state of the Presbyterian Church." Dr. Machen pointed out that Dr. Speer had signed, as reported in the report of the Foreign Mis- sions Conference of North America, January, 1932, a report of the com- mittee on cooperation in Latin America which mentioned among "the out- standing accomplishments of the book department" the securing of the pUblication in Spanish of "several books by Dr. Harry Emerson Fosdick and other American authors." Dr. Speer made no answer to this latter repre- sentation and practically no answer to any of the other specific charges against the board, but stated that he did not desire to engage in con- troversy. Very soon after the initial speeches of Dr. Machen and Dr. Speer the previous question was moved and debate shut off, from which procedure Professor Machen dissented. Dr. Machen's overture was then defeated by a viva-voee vote, and another motion expressing confidence in the Board of Foreign Missions was passed. Dr. Machen insists that, "if the boanl tolerates t.he point of view of the appraisal commission, of Mrs. Buck, and of its own candidate depart- ment, then it cannot honestly ~"ppeal for support to Bible-believing C!llis- tians. If, on the other hand, it is really true to the Bible, as the con· stitution of the Presbyterian Church requires it to be, then it cannot honestly appeal for a single dollar by way of contribution from sym- pathizers with the appraisal commission. It cannot honestly seek to avoid the reproach of "intolerance," which dismissal of Mrs. Buck and a vigorous repUdiation of the report of the appraisal commission would bring. "Mere dismissal of Mrs. Buck now by the board would not, however, change the situation in the slightest," according to Dr. Machen. The case of Mrs. Buck occupies only six of the llO pages in his brief. Compared with his other charges, this has been given an undue importance in the newspapers. However, Dr. Machen does regard it as significant that Dr. George T. Scott, board secretary for China, is reported to have said concerning Mrs. Buck that "her doctrine is so fine and sound that we think people have misinterpreted her articles and doctrinal position" and that one of the senior secretaries, Dr. Cleland B. McAfee, is reported to have said, "I don't foresee any action of the board against her," and to have called her "a very fine Christian worker." But to Dr. Machen a man may agree with Mrs. Buck or with "the historic Christian faith," but to rep- resent himself as agreeing with both, he said, is absurd. To Dr. lIachen Rethinking Missions is a "thoroughly antichristian book" and "constitutes from beginning to end an attack upon the historic Christian faith. It presents as the aim of missions that of seeking truth together with adherents of other religions rather than that of presenting the truth which God has supernaturally recorded in the Bible." In a foot- note on Modernism in missions Dr. Machen states that "religious pacifists who desire peace at any price and have surrendered to Modernist leadership are to all intents and purposes not only Modernists, but the worst kind of Modernists." 35 546 Theological Observer. - .Ritd)tidH3eitgefd)id)tlid)es. A later issue of the OhTistian Oentut·y reported: - "Mrs. Pearl S. Buck has resigned from the missionary body of the Prts- byterian Church, thus ending the possibility that her Church might be troubled by action directed against her own orthodoxy or the orthodoxy of the mission board that supported her. Both Mrs. Buck and the Pres- byterian Board of Foreign Missions probably feel that embarrassment has been a voided by her resignation. It is likely that the yalue of her life as an American Christian resident in China will be increased by her separa- tion from all denominational control. But while we thus acquiesce in Mrs. Buck's decision, we trust that the incident will be given more than cursory attention within the churches. The issue from which Mrs. Buck stepped aside has not been faced, let alone solved. It remains to plague the churches at some future time, perhaps more severely than would have been the case had Dr. Machen's charges against Mrs. Buck and the Presby- terian board been presented to the coming general assembly. The funda- mental cause of this trouble lies in the assumption that there is some authoritative, unchangeable, and exactly phrased body of doctrine which constitutes the Christian Gospel and the passing on of which constitutes the Christian missionary enterprise. Once that assumption is granted, a Dr. Machen is quite within his rights in calling on a mission board to give proof as to the fidelity with which its workers employ that authorita- tive, unchangeable, and exactly phrased body of doctrine. And there is no way of meeting the Machen challenge - except by resorting to the silencer of a majority vote - short of proving that the Machen definition of the authoritative doctrine is wrong, but that there is another definition of authoritative doctrine that is right and to which the missionaries do adhere. Just so long as that basic premise of a rigid standard of ortho- doxy is granted, just so long will there be tension between any mission board and its workers of independent and adventurous spirit." The writer in the Ohristian Oentury is at least candid. He admits that, if there is a rigid standard of orthodoxy, in other words, if the Scrip- tures are infallible, then Dr. Machen is right. If all people realized that the views of Dr. Fosdick and Mrs. Buck are by their own friends admitted to violate Scripture teaching, much would be gained. The pamphlet of Dr. Machen, by the way, in which he assails the Presbyterian board and which has the title Modet'nism and the Board of 1!'0Teign Missions of the Presbyterian Chul'oh in the U. S. A., is an admirahly clear and fearless document, which it is worth anybody's while to peruse with care. A. Dr. McGiffert's .Jesus. - Under this head, Professor Stonehouse of Westminster Theological Seminary, Philadelphia, reviews Dr. McGiffert's History of Ohristian Thought and some of his other outstanding works (The Apostolic A.ge, The God of the Early Ohristiml-s) with a view to ascertain just what this noted American scholar, who as president of Union Theological Seminary has strongly influenced theological opinion in this country, has to say on the person and work of our divine Savior. In view of the fact that Dr. McGiffert's death occurred recently the suhject is of no little importance. His theological position Dr. Stonehouse defines as that of a "radical agnostic" who, however, could not "hreak with the liberal tradition." The extreme liberalism of McGiffert is summed up in the fol- lowing paragraph: "This unmessianic Jesus of Dr. McGiffert never tran- Theological Observer. - SHrdjlidj,,8eitgefdjidjt!tdjes. 547 Bcends the purely human. He was merely a devout Jew whose message was for the Jews only. Consequently, to suppose that He contemplated a break with His own people and a Gentile Christianity divorced from Judaism is, according to Dr. McGiffert, simply preposterous. There was nothing super- natural about His life. The resurrection of Jesus, as we have seen, was a mere 'conviction,' and the Virgin Birth is a 'theory' of the Incarnation. With respect to the origin of the tradition of the Virgin Birth, Dr. McGiffert is uncertain, but he thinks that the tradition 'was evidently due to the desire to account for Jesus' extraordinary personality by ascribing a divine origin to Him.'" On Christ's teaching about righteousness Dr. Stonehouse quotes McGiffert as teaching: "He had an uncommonly high estimate of man's moral powers. In spite of all the wickedness He saw about Him and the disobedience to the divine will He could summon His hearers to be perfect as their Father in heaven was perfect without ever s1iggesting that divine aid was needed or that they wovld have to be made over by divine power if they were to measure up to suoh a standm'd. [Italics our own.] Of the pessimism so widely prevalent in the Hellenistic world, the pessimism that counted man wholly incapable of good without the influx of the divine, th"re is no GlaCe in the Jesus of the synoptic gospels as in Paul and John 'l.nd other Christians both early and late." In popular language, then, IVIcGiffert asserted nothing more than the trite and blatant modernistic error that Jesus was a mere man who taught the people of His time to be good. Even in so highly gifted a man as Dr. McGiffert was reason could discern nothing more about the divine Savior of the world. The incurable blindness of perverted reason is re- markably manifest in his case. In concluding his discussion, Dr. Stonehouse comments: "Ultimately, of course, hostility to what are frequently spoken of as 'outworn dogmas' and recently as 'superstitious creeds' goes back to a hostility to the New Testament itself, and both hostilities rest upon a hostility to the Christ of the whole New Testament, the Lord's Anointed. The formation of the New Testament canon was, according to Dr. McGiffert, very unfortunate, since in its formation, and as a result of it, men ceased to count upon new revelations, 'fresh disclosures of God's will and truth,' and, instead, rather put the present under bondage to the past by an appeal to a 'revelation given once for all in days long gone and never to be added to or altered. Indeed, this bondage to the past is characterized by Dr. McGiffert as a bondage to the apostles (not to Christ), and we are ready to admit that the apostles can have no nnique authority for us unless their authority is derived from Christ. If Dr. McGiffert's contentions about Jesus are cor- rect, it follows that the apostles, the New Testament, and the creeds are a stultification of the purposes of Jesus. 'With the recognition of Jesus' Messiahship, on the other hand, are bound up our whole conceptions of the character of Christianity as the religion of consummation and finality, of a revelation and redemption in Jesus Christ, given once for all, and of Christ as our crucified and risen Lord, who came in the fulness of time and in whom the ends of the ages have come upon us and who will come again in glory to subject all things unto Himself. The decisive and divisive question is still: 'What shall we think of Jesus Christ?'" J.T.M. 548 Theological Observer. - .Ritd)lid)~.3eitgefd)id)tlid)e!l. / II. .2(u5htn~. G:in lffiurt iiliet bie' illnahellltJa~L ~n bet "W.@:. E. Sf." bom 10. IDli:h:a , / biefes ~aljtes lJetiiffentridjt ~tof. D. Sfatl ®tange in @iitiingen einen Wtttfer V untet bet iioetfdjtift ,,@Iauoe unb @:tluiiqlung", bet es bJd ift, bat bJit iljn qiet abbrucfen: ,,~aulus f\ltidjt geIegentridj in f einen mttefen bon bet @:tbJiiljlung bet @Iiiuoigen burdj @ott. ~at fie an ([ljtiftus gIauo en , ift fein aufiilIigei3 @:tcignii3 iqrci3 Ecoens, fonbcm @oitci3 ebJiget m3UIe finbet barin feine @:tjiiIlung. @oit ljat nidjt blot bie m3erten entfteljen Iaff en unb aUf bet @:tbe bai3 Eeoen aui3geoteitet, et qat bon Wnfang an audj an bie IDlenfdjen gebadjt unb feinen m3UIen barauf geridjtet, fie fut fidj au gebJinnen. !Bon Wnfang an fteqt bot iqm bet WugenoIicf, in bern feine ®±imme mein (lljt tteffen unb feine Sjanb meine Sjanb etgteifen foIlte. ~n bet @tenaen~ Iofigfcit bet ®djii\lfung etfdjeint uni3 alletbingi3 bai3 Eeoen bes cinaeInen fiein unb bebeutungsloi3, fo bat bJit es uni3 nidjt benfen fiinnen, bat @ott nadj bern einaelnen IDlenfdjen trage; abet bot bern ebJigen @ott fdjtum\lft bie itbifdj~aeitIidje m3er± aufammen, unb ei3 bleilit nidjt5 bJeitet uotig aIs fein bon @:bJigfeit ljct tiinenbet )Rut unb bet IDlenfdj, bern biefet )Ruf gilt. iibet bie Wbgtunbe bet ,3eiten qinbJeg bJeqt fein ebJiget Eeoeni3obem midj an. "SDiefct ,3ufammenqang meines 0.lIaubeni3 mit bet ebJigen @:tbJiiqlung @oties briingi fidj mit auf, bJenn idj mit betgegenbJiittige, bJeldje mc~ beutung mein 0.lIauoe jiir mein Ecocn qat. ~enn bat ei3 fidj oeim @Iau~ ben urn cine unmiiteIliate @:inbJidung 0.loitei3 aUf mein 53eben !janbeH, bas merle idj baran, bat fidj mit bet@:ntf±equng meinei3 0.lIaubens cine m3anblung meinei3 ®djicffaI0 berbinbet. m3enn bet @Iaube in mit Iebenbig bJitb, bann etlelie idj ben iioetgang aui3 bern ,3uftanb bei3 !BetIotenieins in ben ,3uftanb bes '0.lete±±etfeins. IDlein lii5qetigei3 53elien unb bamit alles 53eben in bet m3eIt etfdjeint mit nun aI0 bai3 !Betbetoen, unb bie Sjanb, bie midj aui3 bern !Betbetlien ljerausteitt, fann nut 0.loitei3 Sjanb fein. @:i3 ift fUt unfem 0.lIauben bJefenHidj, bat fidj mit i!jm bie @ebJitqeit bes SjeiI0 beroinbet. @:!je idj aum 0.lIauoen fam, bJat mein 53eben Ieet unb eitel; aoet burdj ben 0.lIauoen an 0.lott !jat es cinen ~n!jaIt unb dnen m3eri 'liefommen. @:qe idj aum 0.lIauben fam, Ielite idj in ,3bJeifeIn unb Wngft, Ungetoitljeit unb g