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juxta-positions, combinations, and relations, however numerous and distinct the modifications which work themselves out into phenomena may be, there can be no variableness in the primitive constituent elements of nature. Grant that this is so, how does the changeless become the changeable? how does the infinite reality transform itself into that immense collection of finite appearances which constitute the universe ? The mode in which this is effected is the weak point of Anaximander's philosophic scheme. The primitive chaos of which the infinite in its manifestations was made up, works itself into phenomena by the gradual disengagement of like and unlike elements; thereafter the like cohere either with the like or with the unlike, in various proportions and degrees, and thus all things become, in the long process of ages, forth-formed and manifest.
The interpretation of Nature is possible only when an hypothesis is adopted which will satisfy the conditions of thought : but it is only really interpretable when that hypothesis fully complies with, and is faithful to the conditions of thought, and the facts of phenomena. Of all possible hypotheses that only is the true and real “interpretatio naturæ" which conforms, not only to the rigorous laws of the reason, but also to the no less rigorous laws of phenomenal being. The laws of the reason, as they are within ourselves, are more readily subject to conscious experiment, and hence the ancient philosophers sought out in their own souls such solutions of the “ all-encircling mysterious tide of force,” which everywhere manifested its presence around them in phenomena ; and as they were destitute of instruments of experimentation, they were little capable of finding out the agreements or disagreements between their thoughts, i. e., hypotheses and phenomenal nature. This, however, they did do, they helped to exhaust the methods of solution, and thus economized our labours. I look upon Anaximander as starting an hypothesis, conditioned by the laws of thought, though not conditioned by the laws of things. Hence its inefficiency and unsatisfactoriness.
Thales conceived that “all things were fựll of gods;" Anaximander regarded this as an unnecessary complication of the question; as a merely cosmological philosopher, all that he required to project and effect was accomplished when he accounted for the phenomena the cosmos exhibited, without accounting for the pre-ordinating cause, or the intelligence which moved and wrought either beyond or within the Infinite. To aspire to know the universe, and our relations to it, philosophy may venture; to know ourselves, is neeedful to know our relations: to know ourselves and the universe is all that philosophy may hopefully attempt. If we cannot know the Infinite, except in its manifestations, how can we hope to know, by the agency of philosophy, the nature of those powers, intelligent or otherwise, by which the Infinite exists, and is as it exists? There is no repugnance between this system and a belief in the gods; but the gods are not by him made active agents in the outworking of his speculations. There is certainly here the appearance of Pantheism, but that is inferred from his silence, or rather on the silence of the reporters whose evidence is now attainable on the point, regarding his religious belief. There is nothing in the speculations themselves to necessitate Pantheism.
REMARKS.— The line of exposition hereintofore given is, so far as we know, novel. We quote the words of the most popular expositor of the history of philosophy of our day, as our justification as well as his:-“No two historians are agreed in their interpretation of Anaximander's doctrines; few, indeed, are agreed in the historical position he is to occupy.
In offering a new view of the character of his philosophy, we call the reader's attention to this point, as a warrant for the attempt, and as an excuse for failure, if we fail."*
We cannot endorse the fundamental proposition upon which Mr. Lewes's opinion proceeds, viz., “in Greek philosophy, as we shall repeatedly notice, distinctions in words were generally equivalent to distinctions in things.” The Greeks were too acute, and philosophers were yet too ardent in the pursuit of truth, to justify us in imagining that, in this early age, sophistry had acquired dominion over the world's greatest minds. When philosophy had become fashionable and lucrative, Sophists did arise, but what temptation had its early followers to deceive themselves, or strive to deceive others? In Anaximander we perceive a strong mind grappling with mysteries, working out the formule of cosmologic science, and probing speculation to its depths. The Infinite! truly that is the solution, could he but know, by the double teaching of reason and fact what the Infinite really is. In this stage of thought that was impossible; mayhap he did not take the surest method of attaining a solution of that important point; or did he rather, blinded by amazement, shrink from attempting to unveil the mystery of mysteries?
To us who live in happier times, to whom the Infinite images forth thoughts too deep for utterance, let us not ridicule the apparently trivial steps with which human thought advanced. “On the beaten road there is tolerable travelling; but it is sore work, and many have to perish; fashioning a path through the impassable.” They required to conquer whatsoever truth they attained by persevering invasion of the domain of ignorance. We have had our truth given us by a conqueror-even THE MIGHTIEST. Do we value our truth aright; do we seek to know and to practise what we have within our reach? do we exhibit in our lives the energy, the enthusiasm, the worship of wisdom which they exhibited? We go forth with the gift of a New Year in our possession. Shall we devote it to the search after wisdom or to--what?“ There is a danger of the soul's becoming wed to pleasure, and forgetful of its high vocation." Pleasure or wisdom; which shall we choose? The latter is the more noble and the more enduring; let it be our choice, and let us pursue it eagerly, and use our time in its attainment, for though
COUNSEL TO AUTHORS.—It is vain for people to allege that they are naturally without gift, naturally stupid and sightless, and so can attain to no knowledge of anything; therefore, in writing of anything, must needs write falsehoods of it, there being in it no truth for them. Not so, good friends. The stupidest of you has a certain faculty – were it but that of articulate speech, and of physically discerning what lies under your nose. The stupidest of your would, perhaps, grudge to be compared with James Boswell—yet see what he has produced! You do not use your faculty honestly; your heart is shut up-full of greediness, malice, discontent; so your intellectual sense cannot be open. It is vain, also, to urge that James Boswell had opportunities, saw great men and great things, such as you can never hope to look on. What make ye of Parson White, in Selborne? He had not only no great men to look on, but not even men-merely sparrows and cockchafers; yet has he left us a biography of these, which, under its title of “ Natural History of Selborne,” still remains valuable to us, which has copied a little sentence or two faithfully from the inspired volume of Nature, and so is itself not without inspiration. Go ye and do likewise.-Carlyle.
* Lewes's “ Biograph. Hist. Phil.," vol. i., p. 41.
Religion. DO THE SCRIPTURES TEACH THAT THE PUNISHMENT OF THE WICKED
WILL BE ETERNAL ?
AFFIRMATIVE ARTICLE.I. “The punishment of the wicked in the future mission, but with a - reasoning, intelligent state will be an everlasting punishment, for that
faith; and man's opinion upon it we regard state is an unalterable state. It can neither be thought that sinners should change their own na- as a reflected light, guiding us through the tures, nor that God should give His grace to mists of our own ignorance and the bigotry change them, when in this world the day of grace
of our own self-conceit. was misspent, the Spirit of grace resisted, and the means of grace abused and baffled."-Matthew
The evangelist Matthew has left on record, Henry.
chap. xxv. ver. 46, the plain, emphatic de“Nam qui si vitiis humanis contaminarunt, et claration, from the lips of the blessed Jesus, libidinibus se tradiderunt, iis derium quoddam that the wicked “shall go away into everiter est, seclusum à consilio deorum."—Cicero.
lasting punishment.” Were this the only Our present position has become, in mo- passage of scripture affirming the eternal dern times, rather an unpopular one, because duration of punishment to the finally impen-by many it is considered to be unpleasant, litent, it would appear to‘most persons conand by others unfashionable; but no earnest clusive, and they would listen to objections searcher after truth will so judge of any ma- with evident surprise and dissatisfaction. nifestation of truth, much less of any portion But exception being taken by our opponents of that revelation of truth which divine good generally to the term "everlasting” (ai)nion ness has conferred upon man.
in the original), we propose to examine the All the doctrines of scripture are equally import of this term, with especial reference true; but all are not equally important in to its use in the scriptures. "We would, their influence upon the character and con- however, remark in passing, that the general dition of man; for while some doctrines affect significance of the word, in its classic use, man in his social relationship, others have is that of permanence, continued or lasting regard to ceremonial observances during his duration; hence its application to life, time, continuance in the church militant, and eternity, &c. some affect his entire views of the christian God is said to be the “ Creator blessed for system of doctrine and duty, modifying his evermore,” Rom. i. 25; “the everlasting moral condition in time, and influencing his God," Gen. xxi. 33; Isa. xl. 28; Rom. xvi. well-being in eternity. The doctrine now 26; he “ shall endure for ever," Psa. ix. debated is of the latter kind;-repulsive, it 7; he “liveth for ever," Dan. iv. 34; xii. may be, to the fastidious and falsely senti- 7; he “from everlasting to everlasting" mental, but it is real, and must demand the is God, Psa. xc. 2. Jesus Christ is “the serious attention of all earnest thinkers who same yesterday, to-day, and for ever,” Heb. seek their true interests.
xiii. 8; he“ abideth for ever,” Jno. xii. 34; The terms of the present question preclude he is "over all, God blessed for ever,” Rom. any consideration of the cause of punishment is. 5; he “who liveth for ever," I Pet. i. 23: to the wicked, its nature, the time of its his “word endureth for ever," 1 Pet. i. 25: commencement, or the locality where in- I his “ kingdom shall stand for ever," Dan, ii. flicted. We are limited to the simple dura 44. In all of these passages, which are only tion of that punishment; and the only source a small portion of what may be found in the of authority is the word of God. The opi- scriptures, the personal being, the attributes nions of good men may be beneficial in guid- and kingdom of the Godhead, are espressed ing our judgment, but they cannot be autho- by the same term (aiðnion) as the punishritative in demanding our acquiescence. God's ment of the wicked in a future world,word we take as our standard of authority; term which refers to the duration of its subnot with a blind, unreasoning, slavish sub-ject merely, irrespective of any other idea
which may or may not be attached to, or in- ever and ever.' In one of the remaining herent in the nature of the person or thing two, it is said of the impenitent, that is, of spoken of. These various subjects, respecting those among them who worship the beast which a certain duration, expressed by the and his image, that the smoke of their torwords ever and everlasting (aiônion), are pre- ment ascendeth up for ever and ever.' In dicated, not only do not favour a limited pe- the remaining instance, it is said of the riod, however little the limit may fall short devil, who deceived the nations, of the beast, of infinity; but, on the contrary, they are op- and of the false prophet, that in the lake of posed, from their very nature, to any such fire and brimstone they shall be tormented, limit being imposed upon the permanent day and night, for ever and ever. Now, let continuity of their existence. None believing me ask whether a man, even of moderate in the inspiration of the scriptures, or receiv- understanding, could be supposed to write ing the saving truths of the gospel as their with scrupulous integrity, and employ this hope of future happiness, ever questioned phrase sixteen times to denote an absolute either the infinite duration of the existence eternity, and twice to denote that which was of Deity, of his attributes, or of his king- infinitely different; while these were the only dom; why, then, should we force a different instances in which the phrase was applied construction upon the same term when to a given subject, and that of immeaapplied to another subject, which is equally surable importance to those for whom he free from limit, and with equal imperative- wrote? But if such a man cannot be supness demands continuity co-extensive with posed thus to use language, nor vindicate infinity in the only sense wherein the subject it when used in this manner, can such is capable, or can endure that punishment conduct be attributed safely to the Spirit of which is predicated of it? The blessed Jesus, God?”* during his sojourn upon earth, expressed the From the facts of every-day life, equally will of his Father in these affecting words, with the declarations of scripture, we know "God so loved the world, that he gave his that the judicial punishment of the wicked only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth does not commence until after the day of in him should not perish, but have ever- judgment; that is, until some pre-appointed lasting life,” Jno. iii. 16. Here the giver is period after the termination of man's present the "everlasting God;" the gift, “ everlast- state of existence. That the present is the ing life;" and the recipient, man, possessed only state of trial or probation for man is a of an immortal, ever-enduring soul.
truth written on every page of the sacred Hence, from the scriptural use and signi- record. “There is no work or device in the ficance of the term employed in all the cases grave," Eccles. ix. 10; “The night cometh, cited, we conclude that to deny the eternal when no man can work,” Jno. ix. 4; “ Thereduration of the punishment inflicted upon fore be ye also ready; for in such an hour the finally impenitent, involves a denial of as ye think not the Son of man cometh," the infinite duration of the Divine existence, Matt. xxiv. 44; “So then every one of us in his person, attributes, and kingdom,-a shall give account of himself to God,” Rom. denial of the perpetuity of the happiness of xiv. 12; “ For we shall all stand before the the blessed in heaven; and of the immorta- judgment seat of Christ,” ver. 10. Man lity of the soul. Such being the tremendous shall be judged according to the deeds done consequences of the rash act, we entreat the in the body, whether they be good or evil earnest soul to pause on the threshold of (passim), “ It is appointed unto men once to atheism, and consider ere he fall into the die, but after this the judgment,” Heb. ix. 27. snare, and become irretrievably lost.
Seeing, then, that the punishment of the “The phrase (tous aiðnas eis ton aionon) wicked commences after the present life, it commonly rendered 'for ever and ever' is has to do with the spiritual condition of man used, if I mistake not, eighteen times in the chiefly: we say chiefly with his spiritual New Testament! In fifteen instances it is condition, because it is evident, from man's applied to the continuance of the glory, per- nature and the scriptures, that the body fection, government, and praise of God. In | must necessarily undergo a peculiar modifi one, Rev. xxii. 5, it is said of the righteous in a future world, that they shall reign for | * Dr. Dwight, vol. vi., p. 404.
cation before it is capacitated to exist in a demnation--all hope of extraneous help cut future world. We also learn that it com- off by the judicial close of the day of grace mences after the day of grace has been judi- -where is the possibility of escape from cially terminated, and is, in reality, the ese- eternal retribution ? In such hopelessness cution of the sentence required by the broken reason and revelation leave the impenitent law of justice and of grace. Such being the soul. May we all see the importance of case, where do we find the warrant to sus- the sacred injunction—“Flee from the wrath pend the execution of the sentence,“ Depart to come." from me, ye cursed," for I never knew you; It may be replied that the terms, "ever" " and these shall go away into everlasting and “everlasting," are frequently so used in punishment," Matt. xxv. 46? Who shall the Old Testament to convey the idea of save them from this punishment, after the limited duration, as to invalidate the argusentence is pronounced ? Christ, in this ment founded upon them respecting the passage, prophetically announces the imme- present question. We opine not; and refer diate effect of the sentence; who shall gain to the generic significance of the term say his word? If the sentence be not exe- aionios, the word employed for the purpose, cuted, or only limited in its execution, do we both in the Septuagint and in the New Tesnot charge the Most High with folly ? To tament. The generic idea presented in this affirm that sinners are capable of exercising term is that of continuity-permanent exrepentance towards God, and faith in the istence — duration ; and any qualification Lord Jesus Christ, after having entered the which it may receive inust arise from the precincts of hell, is perfectly gratuitous, and essential nature of the subject to which it is evidences the folly of the affirmer; yet even attached in logical connection or grammatical this is necessary, if the duration of the pun collocation; thence it necessarily implies the ishment of the finally impenitent is less than longest period of which the subject is capable. eternal. No sinner, suffering for his sins in In other words, the predicate with which it a future world, can possibly be saved by any is associated is extended to the utmost limit means differing from the means of grace of its subject. These remarks are fully here, “ for there is none other name under | borne out by passages such as the following: heaven given among men whereby we must " The Lord said unto Abram . . . . all the be saved,” Acts iv. 12, but “the name of land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, Jesus Christ of Nazareth," ver. 10. More- and to thy seed for ever," Gen. xij. 14, 15; over, we may very fairly conclude, from the “ I will give unto thee and to thy seed after nature of the case, that there will never thee ..... all the land of Canaan for an exist a disposition, or capacity even, in im- everlasting possession," Gen. xvii. 8. In penitent sinners, to exercise the necessary both places, the reference of the terms penitence and faith to secure acceptance "ever" and " everlasting" is to the existence after their judicial condemnation. One in- of Abram's seed as the chosen nation-as the gredient in their condemnation is the fact peculiar people of God, which existence is that they, at the time of the sentence, are determined by the advent of Christ, and unchanged as to their moral character and consequently these terms are truly applied disposition as to their judge, the Lord Jesus, to express the longest period of which the whom they have always despised; these sin- subject was capable. Of the same nature ful feelings, this character, passes with them are the phrases, “ Thy servant for ever," into that future state of punishment. Their Deut. xv. 17; “He shall serve him for punishment may, not improbably, consist in ever," Exod. xxi. 6; “ The everlasting bills," the continued possession of the same charac-Gen. xlix. 26; “Everlasting priesthood," ter, and be aggravated by the knowledge Exod. xl. 15; Numb. xxv. 13; and many that it has been the cause of their condem-others, all susceptible of the same subordinanation-has purchased for them the wrath tion to the rules of interpretation, which of an offended God. Under such circum- warrant the duration of future punishment stances as these, with the soul hateful in the being assumed as a scripture doctrine, and sight of God at the time of its condemnation yet, in these passages, limit the like expres-the same character carried with it into a sions to a period far short of eternity. state of punishment resulting from the con- ! In addition to, and in support of, our view