« IndietroContinua »
mania, and the Prince himself seemed greatly encouraged. He had passed through so many trials, and found the Roumanians in so many respects unreasonable and ungovernable, that he was evidently determined this time to carry out his oftexpressed resolution of abdication, feeling that it was utterly hopeless for him to attempt to effect any reform or do any good. This indorsement induced him to try once more, and he opened the new Chambers with very encouraging words, and with the recommendation of a series of practical measures of great utility to the civil and industrial advancement of the country. His words were warmly received, and he and his ministry were assured of a steady support on the part of the Assembly. And thus a great crisis was safely passed through, for the departure of Prince Charles under the circumstances would have agitated the qpuntry to its greatest depths, and most certainly have endangered its continuance as an independent nationality. Whether much will have been gained in the end the future alone can decide; but history will accord to the present ruler the credit of having faithfully endeavored, under the most embarrassing circumstances, to administer the trust reposed in him.
Among the first measures of the new legislative body were a few efforts to correct hasty legislation on the part of their predecessors. The constitution adopted was adapted to a fully developed and highly civilized people, but neither its spirit nor its workings were understood by the great mass of the Roumanians. They had introduced jury trials, and under the system robbery and murder had increased in an alarming degree. They had established' full liberty of the press, and it had led to the most revolting and alarming abuses. They had introduced universal suffrage, and the ignorant masses voted for the most ridiculous and inconsistent measures. Finally, they had prohibited foreign colonization on their soil, and their fertile plains were lying waste for the want of intelligent culture. To grapple with questions like these in a statesmanlike manner they needed the experience of a slowly-developed past which they did not possess. It seemed like pigmies undertaking the work of giants. It was a rare task to adapt the governments of modern civilization to so incongruous a community, and the wisest men might be excused for failures in many instances where the first efforts must be experiments on virgin soil.
It was believed that the most imperative need of the country -was a system of railroads to develop its resources, and a very extensive one, recommended by foreign capitalists, was adopted, and made a national undertaking with national obligations. But the system itself was so entirely out of proportion to the ability of the respective regions either to construct or sustain it that all parties connected with the enterprise soon became embarrassed, and vast sums were lost in the undertaking. The contractors were soon unable to continue their work, and ceased to prosecute it when the Roumanian government refused to pay the interest on their obligations to the amount of many millions, which in the meanwhile had passed into the hands of foreign holders. These parties felt that they had been victim, ized, and were influential enough in Germany to induce the government to interfere in their behalf and threaten summary measures if they were not treated justly. The whole matter has been the cause of complications of sufficient magnitude to endanger again the existence of the nation, for Bismarck threatened to appeal to the Sultan to interfere in his suzerain right, and any action on the part of foreign governments acknowledging this continued suzerainty of Turkey is dangerous to the independence of Roumania. This Damocles sword of their railroad embroglio continues to hang over them, and is likely to do so for years.
This unfortunate complication has of late absorbed the attention of the nation almost exclusively, to the great detriment of other matters of intense import to the people at large. The question of the reorganization of the Roumanian Greek Church is one of prime necessity. The position of the clergy is poorly defined in the new constitution, and they therefore continue to exercise a power in the Church which is quite incompatible with the spirit of that document. They are quite often induced to enter the political arena, and, with their influence with the common people, they can easily effect an election to the Chambers, where their votes are seldom on the side of true progress.
But above all, the Roumanians need some system of popular education whereby the masses may be raised from their exceeding ignorance, and made capable of comprehending their situation and their responsibilities. There is probably no greater anomaly in the world than the comparatively libera' constitution of Roumania for a people who nave not the remotest idea of political rights and privileges, and, to tell the truth, no great desire to enjoy them. The masses are still governed by their prejudices, which are those handed down to them from the Middle Ages, and are thus the prey of political adventurers or ignorant enthusiasts. With such material at their command, the wildest and most unprincipled men can start or keep alive persecutions that are not only cruel and illogical, but of the greatest disadvantage to the country, and in direct antagonism to the spirit of the age. It is thus that the Eosettis and Bratianos of the Young Roumanian party can assemble under their red flag the crowds of followers eager for any attack on the Jews, or for a fray with the Germans as intrusive foreigners on their soil, while, in fact, these parties are indispensable to the development of the nation. The periodical return of these cruelties has of late become so frequent and so revolting that the sentiment of Christendom will soon insist on some interference in the interest of humanity, regardless of national sensitiveness or the danger of disturbing the equilibrium of power among European courts.
Aet. VL—SYNOPSIS OF THE QUARTERLIES AND OTHERS OF THE HIGHER PERIODICALS.
American Quarterly Reviews.
Baptist Quarterly, October, 1872. (Philadelphia.)—1. Roger Williams as an Author. 2. The Three Systems of Belief in China. 3. Homer and the Old Testament. 4. The Themes and Methods of Apostolic Preaching. 5. Dr. John Clarke.
Christian Quarterly, October, 1872. (Cincinnati.)—1. American Civilization. 2. "Judaic Baptism." 3. The Philosophy of " Getting Religion." 4. The Vatican Council and the Old Catholics. 5. Collegiate Education for the People.
Mercersburi Review, October, 1872. (Philadelphia.)—1. Nature and Grace. 2. Tho Old and the New. 3. The Sacramental Theory of the Heidelberg Catechism. 4. Why are we Reformed? 5. Faith, a Nornuil Activity of the Soul .
6. The Inscription of the Catacombs. 7. Christianity and the Church.
New Enqlander, October, 1872. (New Haven.)—1. The Preaching to the Spirits in Prison. 2. Our National Banks. 3. Cyprian and his Times. 4. The New Lives of Sir Walter Raleigh. 5. Music as a Fine Ai t. 6. The Oberlin Council.
7. Sectarian Symbols.
North American Review, October, 1872. (Boston.)—1. Herder. 2. The Germanic World of Gods. 3. Niecolini's Anti-Papal Tragedy. 4. American Novels. 5. Kristofer Janson, and the Reform of the Norwegian language. 6. The Political Campaign of 1872.
Presbyterian Quarterly And Princeton Review, October, 1872. (New York.)—1. The Righteousness of God. 2. Faith: Its Place and Prerogative. 3. Florentine Philosophy in the Days of the Medici. 4. Annihilation of the Wicked. 5. John Wesley, His Character and Opinions. 6. Outlines of J. A. Dorner's System of Theology. 7. Japan. 8. The Early History of the'Ottoman Turks.
Quarterly Review Of The Evangelical Lutheran Church, October, 1872. (Gettysburg.)—1. The Church. 2. Explosions of Steam Boilers. 3. Application of the Principle of the Reformation. 4. Free Self-Government. 5. Subscription to the Confessions. 6. Faith the Essential Element for Right Living. 7. The Latest Yoke of Bondage; or, Dr. Finney's Ministerial Test.
Theological Medium, A Cumberland Presbyterian Quarterly, October, 1872. (Nashville, Tenn.)—1. Address to the Conference of the Evangelical Union Church of Scotland, Convened in Glasgow, September, 1872. 2. Cumberland Presbyterianism Teaches Salvation by Grace, without Implicating God in tHe Destruction of the Wicked. 3. The New Covenant 4. Exegesis of Acts ii, 38. 5. A Solemn Charge. 6. Perseverance of the Saints. 7. A View of the Fundamental Aspect of the Application of the Principle of the Reformation by Luther and Melauchthon. 8. The Rationale of Prayer.
Tjniversalist Quarterly, October, 1872. (Boston.)—1. John Murray. 2. The Genesis of Science. 3. The Preparation for Christianity. 4. Sears'a "Heart of Christ." 5. A Popular Objection to TJniversalism Reviewed. 6. Letters of Murray and Richards. 7. The Gospel Minister.
Bibliotheca Sacra, And Theological Eclectic, October, 1872. (Andover.) —1. Patristic Views of the Two Genealogies of Our Lord. 2. The Progress of Christ's Kingdom in its Relation to Civilization. 3. On "The Man of Sin," 2 Thess. ii, 3-9. 4. Revelation and Inspiration. 5. Infant Baptism and a Regenerated Church-Membership Irreconcilable. 6. The Influence of the Pulpit. 7. The Three Fundamental Methods of Preaching—Preaching Extempore. 8. Notes on Egyptology.
It would seem that the subject of
THE RELATION OF INFANTS TO THE CHURCH
is, under the liberal supervision of the Bibliotheca Sacra, undergoing a fresh revision. The Editors say: "Having inserted in a previous number an Article favoring the proposition that the infants of professing believers ought to be baptized, and are constituted by their baptism members of the visible Church, and having inserted in the present number an Article favoring the proposition that infants are not members of the visible Church and ought not to be baptized, the Editors of the Bibliotheca Sacra expect to insert, in a future number, an Article favoring the proposition that the infant children of Churoh-members ought to be baptized, but are not made members of the visible Church by that ordinance."
The Fifth Article is a candid and catholic view of the subject by a learned Baptist writi-r, partly in review of an Article in our own Quarterly by the late lamented Dr. Nadal, who, as our readers will recollect, sustained Infant Baptism on the ground that the Church did not require regeneration in her membership. Although we hold this to be the most unscriptural, most dangerous, and most unMethodistical of all the views proposed, we did not feel at liberty to exclude the Church from hearing what one of her most learned and loyal sons had to say in its behalf. The Christian Church, in our view, aims, however imperfectly the aim is accomplished, to be the Church of the Regenerate. Dr. Nadal's view, we think, contradicts our Thirteenth Article of Faith, which declares that " The visible Church of Christ is a congregation of faithful men." In regard to which it may be affirmed, 1. That the unregenerate are not "faithful" men; 2. That in the view of the Church the baptized infant is a" faithful" man. If "seekers " have in former times been admitted by our Church to the "class," it is not properly as members of the Church. We never knew a "seeker" to be baptized; he can be dropped by the pastor without trial; and all such should be, so soon as they cease to be sincere "seekers." They are received into the " class" simply in order to receive the aid of a spiritual adviser so long as they feel the need of advice and are disposed to profit by it. The present Reviewer, as a Baptist, of course agrees with us in rejecting the doctrine of an unregenerate Church. Jle' differs from us in inferring, therefrom, the impropriety of Infant Baptism.
The indefiniteness of opinion on this subject, described by Mr. Marsh as general, certainly exists in our own Church. It arises, we believe, (and in this entire Article we desire to be understood as speaking not representatively but individually,) from the fact that a majority of our Church has unconsciously varied from our own standards. A large majority has, if we mistake not, contrary to Arminius, to Wesley, to Fletcher, and to our Articles of Faith, come to hold that the living infant is neither justified nor regenerate, and becomes so ordy on condition of death. This we understand from Mr. Marsh to be the present Baptist view. It seems to imply a present infant condemnation; and at any rate, under the Calvinistic view of an irrespective, unforekuowing decree, both of foreordinatiou and reprobation, the logical result is eternal infant damnation. This last doctrine Mr. Marsh repudiates in behalf of all Calvinists of the present day; but, accepting fully his rejection of the dogma, we aver that logically he ought to accept it. Here, if pressed closely, he would find himself involved in a "puzzle" quite as perplexing as any he imputes to Pedobaptists.
The theory which, in our individual view, comes most nearly to our best standards, is very nearly iu Mr. Marsh's words: "That infants are to be baptized because under the atonement they are