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nounccd even to death all that is in the world." * "Prophetical gifts remain with us even to this time, from which yon (Jews) ought to understand that those which were formerly left with your nation are now transferred to us."f
The same view is very distinctly supported by the writings of Irenseus, % ai)d by those of Tert ullian in his "Exhortation concerning Chastity," (c. 4.) "It is true," says the latter, "that believers have the Spirit of God, but not all believers are apostles. For apostles have the Spirit of God properly who have him fully in the operations of prophecy and the efficacy of healing virtues and the evidence of the tongues; not partially, as others have." This was the voice of the second century. We may well believe that it was that of the first as well. "The history of the New Testament canon," says Dr. Westcott, " may be divided into three periods. The first extends to the time of Hegesippus, (A. D. 170,) and includes the era of the separate circulation and gradual collection of the apostolic writings. The second is closed by the persecution of Diocletian, (A.D. 303,) and marks the separation of the sacred writings from the remaining ecclesiastical literature. The third may be defined by the third council of Carthage, (A.D. 397,) in which a catalogue of the books of Scripture was formally ratified by coneiliar authority. The first is characteristically a period of tradition, the second of speculation, the third of authority." §
Speaking of that first period, and of the gradual collection of the apostolic writings, the same devout and admirable scholar remarks in another place: "Silently and slowly, without any formal deliberations or open contests, the work of God went forward. The principles which the apostles set forth separately were combined and systematized. The societies which they founded were more fully organized according to the outlines they had drawn. The writings which they left were preserved and studied, and exercised more and more a formative authority. The Church rose and spread, not by any sudden miracle, but by the gradual assimilation of all around which could contribute to its growth, in virtue of the action of that Spirit which is its life. ... In their origin the writings of the apostles are seen to have been casual and fragmentary. Their authors claim for themselves distinctly the gift of the Holy Spirit; but they nowhere express any design of conveying to their readers a full outline of the faith. Still less do they mdicate any idea of supplementing the Old Testament by a new collection of Scriptures. Yet it is eqtially certain that the New Testament does form a whole. Its different elements are united internally by the closest and most subtle harmonies. No part can be taken away without sensible injury to its unity and richness. The words of the apostles were placed more and more frequently by the side of the words of the prophets, as the teach
* " Dial, with Trypho," § 119. t Ibid., § 82.
\ See liis work "Apiinst Heresies," book iv, e. ix, 25, 26.
ing of Christ by that of the law. Partial collections of the Scriptures of 'the New Testament' were formed without the Church; and as the whole Christian body realized the fullness of its common life, the teaching and the books, which had been in some sense the symbol of a part only, were ratified by the whole."*
Thus we are shut up to this conclusion, that the authority attached to the sacred books was the authority of the Spirit of God as testified first in the sacred writers themselves, and next in those who received their writings and applied to them the test of their own Christian consciousness, as it was developed in the living communities of believers and embodied in the traditions and usages of the Church. In the application of this test, doubtless, it was not either a mere instinct which was appealed to, nor a mere historical tradition, nor the existence of actual documents critically examined. The voice of the Christian community was first the voice of the few and then the voice of the many; first the echo of the living voices of the apostles themselves, and then the memory of those voices, and then the residuum of testimony in the communities, -books, and current speech of Christians. And the result is a volume of inspired writings which has preserved to us not alone the testimony of Christ and his twelve representative disciples, but the indirect evidence of the embodiment of that teaching in a Christian society without which it would have been impossible that those writings should have been handed down. The Spirit of God in the book and the Spirit of God in the life of man, in the historic world, confirm and authorize one another—" The Word was made flesh and dwelt among us."—Pp. 120-122.
These principles lie at the basis of all solid Biblical Introduction. On this subject we recommend the perusal of Bernard's "Progress of Doctrine in the New Testament."
Zeitschriit Fur Kirchogeschichte. (Journal for Church History.) Edited by Briogcr. Fourth Volume. Second Number.—Essays: 1. Brieger, The Religious Policy of Constantine the Great. 2. Reuter, Studies on Augustine, (Second Article.) Critical Reviews: Buddensdeg, Recent English Literature on the History of the Reformation. Analccta: 1. Neumann, A Tubingen Manuscript of PseudoJustin containing the Epistle to Diognetus. 2. Waltz, Epistolae Reformatorum. 8. Kawerau, Epistles and Documents Relating to the History of the Antinomian Controversy, (First Article.) 4. Waltz, Dicta Melancthonis. 5. Crecelius, Miscellaneous.
The article by Dr. Brieger inquires into the personal relation and motives of Constantine the Great in regard to Christianity. • "Bible in the Church," chap. v.
He assumes that Eusebius' story of the cross vision, in 311, is no longer believed by any writer of note. The personal life of Constantine up to his death proves that he was not a Christian by personal conviction, but that the favors he bestowed upon Christianity were a part of his policy. The first proof of his intention to favor the Christians was given in 312, when he ordered the shields of his soldiers to be marked with the monogram of the name of Christ, a combination of the letters XP. The celebrated labarum which was subsequently carried in front of his armies may possibly have been made at that time, but this is not probable. The Christian symbol when adopted in 312 was, however, by no means used exclusively, but it was placed side by side with the ancient pagan symbols. In 313 the famous edict of toleration was issued in favor of the Christians, but this edict involved no infringement upon the rights of the State religion. The entire pagan worship was continued, inclusive of astrology; occasionally the continuance was guaranteed by laws. Even the coins of the emperor continue to wear a heathen impress; quite frequently they are devoted to the sun-god, the favorite of the enlightened pagan monotheists; in many other cases, to Jupiter or to Mars. The emperor shows no intention, as some writers have believed, to introduce a new universal religion; but, in his opinion, the two religions, the old and the new, shall co-exist. In order to promote their mutual toleration he endeavored to find a neutral ground. Therefore, he speaks in his letters and edicts frequently of a supreme Deity, by which the Christians were expected to think of God the Father, the pagans of Jupiter or of the sun-god. The introduction of the celebration of Sunday had the same aim, and in order that Christian and pagan soldiers might celebrate it conjointly he prescribed a general monotheistic prayer to be used by both. When Constantine became the sole ruler of the empire, the favors bestowed by him upon the Christians became more marked, but still the continuance of pagan worship was not interfered with. It is true, paganism was designated as an impious opinion, as a power of darkness. But the " erring" pagans were authorized to keep their false temples. In 326 he issued a prohibition to repair decaying temples, but he remained Pontifex Maximus of the pagan State religion; he provided for the pagan priests, and even toward the close of his reign confirmed them in the possession of their income and rights, and in the exemption from public services. An inscription which belongs to the last years of his life, and the genuineness of which is beyond any doubt, proves that a little town of Italy was authorized to erect a temple to his family, the gens Flavia, and to institute scenic plays and gladiatorial combats. Even in his new residence, Constantinople, several new temples arose which rivaled many churches in splendor. In 330 Constantinople was placed under the protection of a special goddess, and all public squares were furnished with statues of gods. During the entire reign of Constantine we find pagans in the highest offices in the army, in the government, at court, and although there were many court bishops who surrounded the emperor, we also find a new Platonic sophist in the confidence of the emperor. The merit of having fully proved that Constantine did not make Christianity the State religion, but established a "partitetic" state, is ascribed by Dr. Brieger to a work by II. Richter on the Great Roman Empire under the Emperors Gratian, Valentinian II., and Maximus, (Berlin, 1865.) No compulsion was used to spread Christianity, but the emperor did not disdain the liberal use of external favors to strengthen the Christian party, and is even reported by his Christian biographer to have made an address to the bishops assembled at Nice, advising them to increase the number of Christians by prudent, though dishonest, measures. After giving this historical summary of those events in the life of Constantine which indicate his personal relation to Christianity, Dr. Brieger inquires more minutely into the aim which the policy of the emperor had in view. He endeavors to show that Constantine, as a statesman, foresaw that paganism was doomed to fall, and Christianity to obtain ere long the control of the Roman Empire. At that time the Christians were only a small minority in the empire. H. Richter, whose work has already been referred to, estimates that there were from five to six millions of Christians against about forty-five millions of pagans. Other estimates place the number of Christians from one tenth to one twentieth of the total population of the empire. But, though a minority, they were steadily growing, and the inevitable doom of the pagan State religion was foreseen by many. At that time the Church already had a strong, hierarchical organization. If the emperor without any interference allowed the Church to replace the pagan State religion, it was likely that the Church would become the ruler of the State. To prevent this, Constantine conceived the idea of making the already powerful organization of the Church serviceable to the State and the government. The part he took in the Council of Nice illustrates his position. The emperor called the Council; he appointed the president or presided himself; he indicated to the bishops what resolutions he wanted them to pass; the bishops who refused to concur in ibese resolutions were deposed or exiled. At that time jhe emperor favored the orthodox party in opposition to the Arians; a few years later he went over to the side of the Arians, and so many bishops had already learned to submit to the demands of the emperor, that he could secure the deposition by a synod of Athanasius. He treated the Church as a part of the State administration; thus he laid the foundation of the idea of a Christian State Church, and of the so-called Christian State. These ideas still prevail in many European States, among others in Germany. Being a member and a minister of one of these State Churches, Dr. Brieger would fain believe that the system inaugurated by Constantine has redounded, on the one hand, as he admits, to many serious injuries; yet, on the other hand, also to immeasurable blessings to mankind, as the Christian Church on this new basis has become the great educator of the nations. Appended to this article is an essay on the history and the different forms of the monogram of the name of Christ.
Thkolooischk Studien Und Kritiken. (Theological Essays and Reviews.) 1880. Third Number.—Essays: 1. Grimm, The Council of the Apostles. 2. Wetzel, An Attempt to Explain Galatians ii, 14-21. 3. Fischer, Rothe's Fundamental Views of Ethics and Religion. Thoughts and Remarks: 1. Ritrecht, The Preparation for Preachiug. 2. Klostermann, The Date of the Martyrdom of Isaiah in the Roman Calendar. Reviews: 1. Goebel, The Parables of Jesus Reviewed by Achelis. 2. Zoeckel, History of the Relations between Theology and Natural Science.
1880. Fourth Number. Essays: 1. Waostein, The Influence of Stoicism upon the Earliest Formation of Christian Doctrines. 2. Erhardt, The Views of theReformers on National Economy, (First Article.) 3. Klostermann, On the Calendar Signification of the Year of jubilee. Thoughts and Remarks: 1. BaethOen, Critical Notes on Some Passages of the Text of the Psalms. Revietos: 1. Herdingius, Hieronymi de Tins inlustribus liber, etc., reviewed by Ludwig.
Dr. Ernst Wadstein, the author of the first article in the fourth number, is lecturer in the theological faculty of the