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be right and proper, enforcible and duly renderable. These are some of the queries which philosophy, on proceeding to concern itself with politics, must prepare itself to answer, and it must go over the whole field of investigation with the intent of reconnoiter. ing it fully; keeping a sure outlook on all the facts, and deducing from the facts all the general principles which ought to govern the practice of those who trust to it. Only thus can it be speculative, surreying, theoretical; and thus alone can we achieve a philosophy of politics. Whether the facts are simple or undisputed, numerous, intricate, difficult to ascertain, doubtful, or contested, it must find and weigh them; generalize the truths they teach; and probe, and test, retry and persistently examine all the facts with the generali. zations to which they have given rise, and the generalizations with the facts from which they have been induced.

The idea we have of the philosophy of politics is different from that of any work to which allusion bas been made in the preceding part of our paper. It does not deal with legislation or statecraft, political agitation or executive measures. It passes beyond these into the region and dwelling-place of principles. It traces the course of thought through statistics, customs, laws, history, &c., into the recesses of will and the sphere of morality. It endeavours to acquire the idea of sanction as the common eventual source of duty and obligation; and to examine by the postulates and principles of righteousness what ought to be done that can be effectually done in subordinating the individual will to the general interest, and combining the idea of sanction with coercion so as to make individual life possible and pleasurable within the domain of duty to the state. The questions which arise in the course of our inquiry will, in many cases, coincide with those belonging to cognate sciences; but the point of view taken will give them a special interest and instructiveness. But our readers must judge for themselves—from our papers as they appear in order-how

they may be willing to peruse our intended chapters on the Philosophy of Politics.

TIME WORKS WONDERS.-Adam Smith, if we mistake not, had died before “The Wealth of Nations” had got past even a second edition. Several years had elapsed before a hundred copies of Mr. Hume's “ History” were sold ; and he himself has told us that nothing but the earnest entreaties of his friends induced him, in the face of such a cold and chilling reception, to continue his historical labou rs. The booksellers since Gibbon's death are said to have inade £200,000 off his “Decline ard Fall of the Roman Empire ;” and hardly a year passes that a new edition of his immortal work or of Hume's "History of England ” does not issue from the press. The sums realized by the bookselling trade from the different editions of “The Wealth of Nations” would have constituted a large fortune." — Blackwood's Magazine.

Religion.

IS RITUALISM CONSISTENT WITH, OR UNNECESSARY TO THE ADVANCEMENT OF TRUE CHRISTIANITY?

CONSISTENT.-I.

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Nothing is easier than to vilify opponents, and to misrepresent their opinions or malign their motives. Indeed it is too much the ordinary course of debates to write against opponents rather then against opinions, as if they thought that contempt was competent criticism, raillery was reasoning, and laughter logic. In no con. troversies whatever have there been such flagrant violations of Christian charity and such heartless disregard of upright dealing and honest disputation as in those carried on upon religious questions. We hope we may be spared from adding another instance to the many illustrations already in existence of the malice and un. charitableness of religious debate. If we would reflect more upon the sacredness of truth and yearn less after personal victory we should better fulfil the law of charity to which we are bound. Let truth be to us most sacred, as the representative and symbol of Him who is "the Way, the Truth, and the Life” to us; let us deny ourselves " the pleasures of ill-natured imputations, and let us re. gard the questions before us as those which are of interest, not between the debaters only, but to the general assembly of the Church. If we do this, we shall, most probably, reach some por. tion of truth on the matters of controversy; if we fail in charity, one towards another, is it not most probably because there is no truth in us?

This controversy on Ritualism concerns itself with a subject, regarding which passion has been aroused to a lamentable extent and height. But had men duly considered that it was less a ques. tion about the duty of map than about the honour due to God, surely such unseemly events could not have occurred, as our newspapers report, in many towns where Ritualism bas been intro. duced.

All religion is symbolical. It indicates rather than expresses the worshipfulness in human hearts. The very words of our prayers are merely signs, the very tones of the holy songs we sing are only representative of the joy or sorrow which we feel in our acts of devotion ; the days on which we assemble ourselves together for worship are only seasons set apart by formal resolve to show forth the right of our God to sipreme reverence and obedience. Baptism is a visible sign of our admission into the Church of Christ, and

the Eucharist of our being numbered among the reputed servants of the Most High in Christ our Passover. The earthly speech we employ in our worship only faintly adumbrates or shadows forth the feelings of our spirits; and the places set apart and consecrated to divine worship are only the evidences of our desire to serve Him " from whom all blessings flow.” Our life is altogether a life of signs.

Ritualism we shall define for the convenience of discussion--not at all as admitting the accuracy, far less the adequacy of the defini. tion-as the embodiment to the senses, by some means or other, of man's heartfelt desire to give unto the Lord the glory that is due, the shadow by which we seek to represent the substance of the deFotion indwelling in our souls--the outward signs, tokens, means, methods, and appliances by which we endeavour to give palpable form to and evidence of the desire in our hearts to give glory to God. Ritualism, in this sense, then, is that whole and entire set of institutions, ceremonies, forms, signs, symbols, and representative acts, by which_assemblies of Christ's disciples show forth their attachment to Him and their desire to shadow out their inward thoughts.

So viewed, Ritualism is undoubtedly necessary to Christianity. To be Christian at all we must let it be seen and known of all that we have been with Jesus. We must both feel His praise in our hearts, utter it with our lips, and show it forth in our lives. Prayer is a rite--a rite instituted by Christ. Praise is a rite - rite the fulfilment of which God demands. The reading of th= Word is a rite-a rite of theocratic Judea incorporated with apostolic Christianity. The exposition of the Scriptures is a rite-a rite which Cbrist bimself engaged in with his disciples, to which his apostles were ordained, and in which they at once imitated and obeyed him. Baptism is a rite-a rite instituted by God, and conformed to as well as commanded to be observed by Jesus Christ. The Lord's Supper is a rite-a rite specially appointed by Jesus to commemorate, show forth, and repeat in everlasting symbols, the sacrifice of our Lord for our sins.' In fact the whole of worship is a conjoined series of rites, of instituted ceremonial and representative acts and symbols ; and life, if it be true life-a life in which all is done to the glory of God-is a whole and entire symbolism or series of ritualism.

In view of these facts how many will deny that Ritualism is not only strictly consistent with, but also absolutely necessary to, Christianity ? Without attention to rites can a man be a true Christian ? Must we not be baptized into Christ? meet together for the worship of God in Christ manfested unto us in mercy ? pray to God after the manner taught us by our Lord? praise the Father of all mercies and goodness, consolation and peace, in fervency of spirit and show forth the Lord's death as communicants at his own holy table, that so we may be made partakers of his body and blood, bis sacrifice? How else are we able to signify our love for Him, to symbolize our relation

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to Him, to make known our reliance on Him, to profess our faith in Him, or to confess our obligations to Him? Ritualism, then, is a part and parcel of Christianity, an expressly commanded portion of the duty of those who believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and who are not ashamed of the gospel of Him who came to save to the uttermost all those who come unto Him, who are baptized unto his death, and with whom he condescends to come in and sup. We cannot doubt the absolute commands of our Lord, we cannot gloze over his conformity to all the rights and ceremonies of the worship of his time, in which he was our ensample that we should walk in his steps; we cannot demur to the express revelations of Christ from heaven regarding the Eucharist, which shows us that He is the true bread of life which came down from heaven, and which alone can adequately satisfy the prayer which he taught his disciples to use, saying, Give us this day our daily bread.” We presume that there can be no dispute about the foregoing arguments, which seem to be so plain that he who runs may read, and reading may understand. The extent, not the fact, of Ritualism, will, we presume, be made the staple of oppugnant debate. When, however, we grant the consistency of Ritualism with Christianity, nay, are compelled to confess its absolute necessity to true Christianity, the question of extent becomes a thing of scarcely any importance. That comes to be argued upon other principles, and depends on other matters, but the fact is independent altogether of degree. We may be allowed here to remark

The importance of Ritualism in worship.

All worship in all countries has set forms, and it has been the universal practice of humanity to give peculiar solemnity and sacredness to the forms of worship. It was on the form, not the fact, of worship that Cain was less favoured by and acceptable to God than his brother Abel. God expressly appointed the ritual of the wilderness and the temple. Failure observe the ritual of the Mosaic dispensation was punished with great severities, and carelessness with regard to the glory of the Lord in the Jewish ceremonial called on the heads of the people serere chastisement, and the prophets are full of denunciations against those who profane the ritual and neglect the forms as well as the realities of worship. Jesus was careful to “ go up to Jerusalem" according to the ritual of his time, to be present at the feasts, and to take his part in the services of Jehovah.

We may just notice in one other brief sentence-the Christian law of Ritualism.

We should give of our best to God-such was the law of sacrifice in the olden time. We should, “whatsoever we do"--and therefore preferably our worship-—" do all to the glory of God.” Can we be doing so while we live in palaces and worship in barns ? while we fill our own dwellings with beauty, elegance, luxury, and refinement, and leave “the house of God" low, mean, unadorned? while we surround our own tables with ceremonial indicative of respect, and hedge it round by etiquette promotive of grace P while we deny the comely forms of decency and order to the ordinances of the Lord in our holy things—in our prayers, our praise, our reading of the Word, in our communion with the blessed Saviour at the eucharistic feast? Do we wash with water and anoint with oil ? do we array ourselves in fair raiment, and observe the forms of civility in our intercourse with each other? and shall we refuse to observe the forms of godliness in our worship of God? It is easy to deride vestments, genuflexions, breathed adorations, and respectful turnings, but it is not easy to justify the selfishness of man in making God's house a byword of shame from its shapeless unsuggestiveness of anything glorious, reverential, boly, and God-like.

The cathedrals of Europe, the paintings and statuary of our forefathers in the church, the glorious music in which the praises of our God have been enshrined, the age-long devotion given to the decoration of copies of the Holy Bible, all show how far we have departed from the good ways of those who felt the flame of holy love in their souls in ancient times. They gave their best in days of poverty and trial, and bestowed on the church the anxious, loving elaboration which their heart's love to God prompted; we in days of wealth grudge to the house of the Lord the outward decency of a mill erected to mammon, and allow the gin-palace and the theatre to use for the devil's service the talent and labour which they employed in striving to make their churches more fitting than before for the Lord to dwell in. Is this Christian? Is this wise ? Is it not rather a true sign of the decadence of the reverential spirit of the worshipful love wbich Christians ought to show towards their loving God and Father and Saviour? If we are to worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness, how shall we do it if we discard Ritualism as inconsistent and unnecessary ?

LINES.

UNNECESSARY.I.

We shall preface the discussion of the above question, byI. Briefly noticing what Ritualism is. II. Giving a definition of true Christianity.

I. Ritualism is an excessive fondness for religious observances, rites, ceremonies, and solemnities, and is a marked feature of the ecclesiastical life of the present day; having been for some time past developing in certain sections of the professing Church of Christ, to an extent before unknown among the people of this empire, so that an increasing degree of importance is begun to be attached to it. As instances of this we may observe the growing frequency of such practices as the following :--the constant presence of candles in the church, either lighted or unlighted; the officiating minister entering the church accompanied by boys in surplices ; turning to a particular quarter of the heavens, and using a different kind of dress, in all the various parts of the church service; a whole catalogue of kneelings, bowings, intonings, vestments, crosses, adornings of both person and building, &c.; an assimilation to Laudianism, as it was

1868.

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