A COLLECTION OF ALL THE WORKS OF THE FATHERS OF THE CHRISTIAN CHURCH, PRIOR TO THE COUNCIL OF NICEA,
EDITED BY THE
REV. ALEXANDER ROBERTS, D.D.,
AUtnOR OF 'DISCUS8IOSS OK TOR GOSPRLS,' RtC.;
JAMES DONALDSON, L.L.D.,
AUtHOR OF 'A CEItICAL HIStORY OF CHRIStIAN LItF.RAtURF. AND DOCtRINR, FROM tHF . DF.AtH OF tHR APOStLRS tO tHF . NICENF . COUNCIL,' AND RRCtOR OF tHR ROtAL HIGH SCHOOL, RDINBURGH.
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The translator is assured that nothing is needed on his part to commend this remarkable work to the philosophical student of theology in England, beyond an apology for the imperfections of the English garb in which it appears.
The great and growing interest of the subject, and the profound and exhaustive learning which the author1 has brought to bear upon its treatment, had made the translation of this book a desideratum to many, who only knew it by casual reference and quotation, long before this attempt was contemplated. But the hope that such a work would fall into thoroughly competent hands was indulged in vain, when, by the enterprise of the publishers of the Foreign Theological Library, the present translator was encouraged to do what he could to supply the need. The result of his endeavour is here presented to the English biblical student as a mine of wonderful depth and fertility, which will well repay those who have the courage to pierce through a somewhat unattractive surface.
1 The subjoined testimony of Dr Fueret to the deserved reputation of Dr Delitzsch, may not be uninteresting to the English student:—
Extract from the Preface to Ftterst's Hebrew Concordance. "Non possum quin publice gratum meum animum testificer Fr. Delitzschio Phil. Dr. adolescenti doctrina disciplinaque prsestantissimo, cujus vivo literarum amore et adjutrice consuetudine non pauae de disquisitionibus meis interioribus ac reconditis maturuerunt. Preclara ejus in Uteris biblicis ac judaicis eruditio—quam jam compluribus operibus satis luculente comprobravit, eum, quamquam in rebus theologicis prorsus a me dissentientem, socium atque adjutorem mihi adjuuxit, quem in Uteris rabbinicis ac talmudicis antea auditorem et discipulum habuisse merito glorior
"LirsiiE, Idibus Juniit 1840."
"0 > ««-i ran 271731
The peculiar difficulties with which the translator has had to contend, were not unanticipated by the learned author himself, and may therefore be reasonably pleaded in bar of severe criticism on the way in which the task has been accomplished. Dr Delitzsch, in a courteous reply to a communication in which he had been informed of the intention to translate his book, says: "You are right: that book of mine greatly resists translation into English; it is full of newly-coined words and daring ideas; and both its form and substance are most elaborately involved." This witness is profoundly true; and should it approve itself so to the reader in the course of his perusal of the following pages, it is hoped that he will indulgently remember this testimony.
Any attempt to criticise the work itself, the translator conceives to be beyond his province. He contents himself, therefore, with briefly reminding the reader, that in giving all the author's views and statements without comment or qualification, he does not pledge himself to their indiscriminate adoption or approval. His desire has been, as far as he was able, to convey the writer's thoughts, in English which should as nearly as possible be equivalent to the original.
Wells, Dec. 30, 1866.
PREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITION.
When, in the summer session of 1854, I proposed, a course of Biblical Psychology, I was compelled to discontinue it before beginning the middle division, because unforeseen circumstances had laid me under the necessity of limiting the number of hours appropriated to these lectures. Invited from many quarters to complete the fragment, I laboured ceaselessly onward; and thus appeared this book, wherein I discharged to my dear hearers of that time, a debt which, as I venture to hope, they had not forgotten.
My preparations for the subject are so old, that as early as the year 1846 I was endeavouring to arrange them. In a Latin dissertation upon the elements of man's nature— sketched out at that time, but suppressed—I proposed to myself an answer to the fundamental question: Whether the soul, so far as it is distinguished from the spirit, belongs by its nature to matter or to spirit? This question I proposed to consider on the side of the ecclesiastical doctrine of dichotomy that had become prevalent, which, moreover, I defended in my Theology of Biblical Prophecy (1845), and in both editions of my Commentary on Genesis (1852 and 1853).1 That dissertation, indeed, is absolutely right in maintaining the unity of nature of soul and spirit; but it suffers from the great defect, that it does not do justice to the substantial difference between the two that is everywhere presupposed in the Holy Scripture. If this defect were not remedied, the psychologic mode of speech and matter generally in the Holy Scripture would be an obscure and formless chaos. The key of biblical psychology is found in the solution of the enigma: How is it to be conceived, that spirit and soul can be of one nature, and yet of distinct sub
1 The first edition of the System of Biblical Psychology (1855) comes between the second (1853) and third (1860) editions of the Commentary on Genesis.
stance 1 It was not until I was enlightened upon this question that my confused materials of biblical psychology formed themselves as if spontaneously into a systematic unity.
My problem was an historical one, standing in a wholly different internal attitude to the psychologic views of the New Testament, from that in which it stood—say to those of Plato or of the Indian Vedanta. In seeking exegetically to ascertain these views, and to combine them into a whole which should correspond to their own internal coherence, I proceeded from the auspicious assumption, that whatever of a psychologic kind Scripture presents will neither be self-contradictory, nor be so confused, childish, and unsatisfactory, as to have any need to be ashamed in view of the results of late psychologic research. This favourable assumption has, moreover, perfectly approved itself to me, without my being afraid of having considered the psychologic statements of Scripture in any other than their own light. For while the Scripture testifies to us of the fact of redemption, which is the revealed secret of human history and the uerse, it gives us also at the same time disclosures about the nature of man, which, as well to speculative investigation into the final causes and connections of things, as to natural and spiritual self-contemplation, manifest themselves to be divine suggestions. So far, perhaps, the book before us may claim some consideration from inquirers into natural science and philosophy—from such, namely, as are not concealing views of the same kind as were lately frankly avowed by Carl Vogt.
But especially would I commend my work to the examination of all those who are interested in the controversy on the fundamental question of psychology between the Giintherish school and its opponents. For years the works of Anton Giinther were my favourite study; and a book by a friend of his, J. H. Pabst, who preceded him into eternity on July 28, 1838, entitled Der Mensch und seine Geschichte (1830), to which Giinther first called my attention, even attained the importance of a turning-point in my course of theological training. Nevertheless I could never make my own the view of Giinther, on the essential distinction between the human soul and spirit, however I might have wished, and that for biblical and experimental reasons, which I have explained in this book in several places. The human soul gives life to the body by means of natural energies which appertain to matter, but the substance of these powers of nature is not the same as the human soul.
The now greatly increased literature of the psychologic controversy, which is raging in the Roman Catholic Church,— a controversy which has lately exploded in the face of all the world in the Allgemeine Zeitung,—has not been, I regret to say, very familiar to me. In general, in the immensely wide range of psychological literature, a great deal that is deserving of consideration, both old and recent, has undoubtedly escaped me. But I have read many writings also that were known to me which I have not spoken of, because they were of no use to me for an exegetically careful, intelligent, and liberal probing into the depths of Scripture,—an investigation which in the church creed has its restraining barrier, but yet not its circumscribing measure. This just mean between a false bondage and a false freedom craving after novelty, is a virtue not so frequently found in the literature of theology.
I have striven after this virtue; and as I seek at no point to overstep the limit of the church's knowledge up to the present time, without at the same time assuring myself that I am abiding by the scripturally sound creed of my church, I shall not be blamed for some theosophic sympathies, especially as I have reduced what Jacob Bohme taught about God's sevenfold nature to the more biblical conception of the divine glory (doxa), and, moreover, have only so far appropriated it as it commended itself to me on biblical grounds. It was just in the light of this conception that the solution of the psychological problem occurred to me. In it (scil. this conception)— hitherto unduly neglected, and, as Weisse (Philosophische Dogmatik, i. 617) not at all too strongly expresses it, emptied of soul and life as it was under the hands of dogmatic philosophy— there are still to be found undiscovered treasures of knowledge.
I have still much to say to courteous readers. But I shrink from bringing myself any longer personally in the front of my book. In deeply conscious acknowledgment of its imperfection, but yet with a grateful retrospect to the enjoyment I have found in the inquiry, I resign it to the not less merciful than strict criticism of the divine Fire (1 Cor. iii. 11-15).
Eklangen, September 1855.
PREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITION.
The reason why I so long resisted the general wish for a second edition of my Biblical Psychology, will be found in the book itself. I wanted first to ascertain whether the substantial view of the book would approve itself to me anew. When this had been the case, however, I was bound to yield to that wish with the less hesitation, in consideration of the numerous studies of language and history that I have stored in this book, independently of that fundamental view to which I have now considerably added, studies in a more rigid historical apprehension of the nature of my undertaking.
I therefore beg all my readers carefully to distinguish the unassailable historical matter that is here placed before them, from that which is submitted to them for examination, and especially from those merely individual attempts to arrange it in general consistency with the scriptural view of God and the world; and to combine it systematically, agreeably with the suggestions of the Bible. He who in this behalf will form a competent estimate of my work, must first occupy a similar dogmatic, or, which is the same thing, ecclesiastical position to mine. That critics who are unprepared to answer the question, What is the Son of man? and who cut down the holy truths of faith in which they were baptized, and on account of which they are called Christians, nay, evangelical Christians, for the greater glorification of their scientific integrity,—that such critics should be able to find no enjoyment in my book, is wholly natural; and that the exact critics, who have no taste for a gnosis exercised in biblical paths, and the materialist critics, who know of no other induction than one which is calculated by atoms, should reject my book as a senseless production, is neither more nor less than might be expected.
I rejoice in another estimate on the part of those who regard everything earnest and without deception—not merely the book of nature, but also the book of the Holy Scripture—as the attestation of a divine revelation, and who acknowledge the ground upon which I build (not without taking heed How I build) as the one that endures for ever. If my building on this ground should prove a failure, it is after all a first attempt, which still perhaps may supply many stones for a more solid and newer edifice. It is always something gained, that the doctrinal material of biblical psychology here at length more completely and successfully than formerly appears organically articulated, so that it claims to be regarded as a science. And if, moreover, many developments slip in, which appear to lose themselves in what is fanciful, and can pretend to no demonstrative force,—a reproach which no science will escape, which is concerned with the invisible, the spiritual,—it is a fault that may be easily atoned for by the instructive communications of most manifold contents presented in connection therewith.
Of such readers, thankful, and yet critically examining and sifting, the book has not hitherto been deficient. And if I thank those who, as Noack and Strobel, have considered it intelligently, although unfavourably, and have not despatched it with an arrogantly brief notice, or still more arrogantly ignored it altogether, I am doubly and trebly indebted to those who, as v. Hofmann, J. P. Lange, Schubert, Werner, and v. Zezschwitz, have submitted it to a more or less severe but still friendly criticism. But I have been deeply ashamed of the very favourable consideration which President D. K. F. Goschel and General-Major v. Kudloff have devoted to my work. These two honourable veterans, grown grey in the noblest service, have prosecuted the examination of it step for step in special writings. The one is no more among those who live in this world, from whom he was removed on the 22d September in this year, in the seventy-seventh year of his age; but as the church above and the church below form an undivided living unity, my grateful greeting will find its way to him above. And how deeply I know how to esteem the loving service which the other has rendered to my work, this revision will, I hope, show him, for which the delightful study of his work has supplied me with an abundance of fertile suggestions.
But otherwise, moreover, dear friends, such as Besser, Biesenthal, v. Harless, Luthardt, J. Schubring, v. Strauss, by epistolary, others by oral communication of their critical observations, have rendered service to my work, especially " my Elberfeld Critic," whose critical annotations, communicated to me by the goodness of the mission-inspector, D. Fabri, suggested to me rich material for the revision and elaboration of my views of biblical psychology. And although my book should even contain but little that is good originating from myself, yet care is taken that the reader should be made aware of the communications of such others as might partly dissent as to principles, partly might positively correct what has been written. Important inquirers, such as Molitor, Hamberger, K. v. Raumer, Fleischer, Tischendorf, have afforded such contributions. Moreover, there are not wanting extracts from rare books. There is found here the complete draught of the biblical psychology of C. Bartholinus, which I discovered at the library at Nordlingen in a compilation, where I had previously not looked for it; and passages important to the history of science from other writings: moreover, an extract from a mediaeval manuscript, entitled Das Leben der Minnendm Seek, which is transferred from the library of D. Biesenthal into mine.
As only a few pages of the book have remained without improvement and enrichment, its extent, in spite of the unequally crowded print, has grown by four sheets. The relation of the soul to the spirit will be found even now also conceived as secondary, but everywhere more clearly and simply expressed. The relation of the doxa to the personal nature of God is represented, as I hope, more convincingly, as well exegetically as speculatively (i. Sec. 3., iv. Sec. 6). The distinction of nature and substance, which in the first edition was assumed, is now discussed (n. Sec. 4). The trichotomic fundamental text, 1 Thess. v. 23 (n. Sec. 4), and that of creationism, Heb. xii. 9 (n. Sec. 7), are searchingly considered. And equally so, the interpretation of the foundation texts of the conscience, Rom. ii. 15 (in. Sec. 4); of the relation of the soul to the blood, Lev. xvii. 14 (iv. Sec. 11); and of the antinomy of the spirit and the flesh unadjusted in the world, Rom. vii. (v. Sec. 6), are investigated anew. The just claim of biblical psychology to be called a science (Proleg. Sec. 2); the ideal pre-existence of the historically actual (i. Sec. 2); the similitude in man of God, and not merely of the Logos (n. Sec. 2); the dualism of spirit and matter (n. Sec. 4); the distinction of a wider and narrower conception of irvevfia (iv. 4, 5, v. 6); the fundamentally of the will (iv. 7); the priority of the spirit over the soul (rv. 8); the conception in the evangelical history of the Kenosis (v. 1); the importance to the history of redemption of the Descent (vi. 3); the actual reality, in the sense of Scripture, of the conjuration of the dead, 1 Sam. xxviii. (vi. Sec. 5)—are all established anew, with reference to the objections that have been advanced. Language, as a psychological manifestation, is better appreciated than before, as well in accordance with Scripture as experience (iv. 4, 10); the nature of the dream is more sharply denned, and its biblical name explained (iv. Sec. 14); and more attention is directed, in the region of extraordinary phenomena of the life of the soul, to the individual degrees and conditions of prophecy (iv. 14, v. 5). The earlier view of the psychologic matter of fact of possession (iv. 16), and the view of the relation of the resurrection-corporeity to the present one (vn. 1), are justified. Many psychologic definitions of relation, as soul, power, and matter (iv. 9), person (I) and nature (iv. 2), heart and brain (iv. 12), are newly examined, and the history of the views referring to them enlarged upon. In this manner the revision is extended to every paragraph. The substantial views, and the arrangement of the material, are nevertheless first and last the same.
To the doings of the later physiology, empirical psychology, and medical psychology, I have referred in this second edition, as compared with the former, not more frequently, but rather more seldom, because I have gained the experience, that the representatives of this school of inquiry do not quite approve of seeing themselves named by a theologian of my tendency. But such references might, moreover, easily be misunderstood, as though biblical views ought to be modelled according to the results of natural science (precarious though they are), or the latter according to the former. Yet they were not always to be avoided. But my task is one wholly unconfused with that of these inquirers. The book whose answers to the questions respecting the source, the operations, the conditions, and destinies of the soul I have undertaken to discover, is not the book of nature, but the book of Scripture; and I have written for those to whom the answers of this book of books are not indifferent, and who know not merely a natural world of experience, but also one that does not give place to that in reality of self-conviction.
Thanks be to God for the capacity bestowed once again to accomplish this work. May He bless it, to the stimulating further labours in this field of biblical psychology. Should it, moreover, be impossible entirely to solve the problems which meet us here, still the Creator of all things is to be glorified, that He has granted to the human soul the capacity of raising itself above itself by self-investigation, and with the necessity for this investigation has imparted the blissful pleasure that proceeds therefrom.
Erlangen, Mid-November 1861.