Page:Modern Rationalism (1897).djvu/19

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RATIONALISM IN THEOLOGY.

source of merit; it is rather a passive endowment. Such was the teaching which resounded in the halls of Trinity early in the century.

Maurice, also, is latitudinarian with regard to Scripture. He regards its ethical contents principally, and is prepared to yield on questions of form. Sin is nothing more than a certain condition of our life. It is not guilt or responsibility, not a consequence of actual disobedience of God's law or an effect of his displeasure. Christ was not a mediatorial substitute for humanity, but its natural representative with the Father. From his peculiar view of physical death, it followed that there could be no resurrection or general judgment in the orthodox sense. Maurice occupied the chair of Divinity at King's College, London, and for some time after the publication of his "Essays" no notice was taken of his heterodoxy. At length the principal, Dr. Jelf, was induced to read them, and he at once, in 1853, took steps for the removal of Maurice. He, however, still continued in the Anglican ministry, and was for some time chaplain to Lincoln's Inn, and after a few years was appointed by the Queen's authority to the district church of Vere Street, Marylebone. Finally, in 1866, he was appointed to a chair of Moral Philosophy at Cambridge.

In the same connection must be mentioned Kingsley, who disseminated the new liberalism in a series of brilliant novels. Having had Derwent Coleridge, son of Samuel Taylor, for tutor, he was early attracted to the new movement. The atonement he, like his predecessors, denied to be a reconciliation of sinful humanity with an angry deity. Christianity was not a remedial dispensation, but only an outward exhibition of the union of humanity with God that had always existed. Christ did not come to effect this union, but to declare its existence, and to edify and console us by his life and sympathetic death. He emphasizes the "multitudinism" of their principles. The Church is not the Jewish nation or any particular sect, but the entire world, from a certain point of view, as Rigg formulates his opinion: "The Church is the world lifting itself up into the sunshine. The world is the Church falling back into shadow and darkness." Hence, too, Judaic literature has not the monopoly of the Holy Spirit. Its influence is