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is a circumstance which, abstracted from all consideration of the soundness or unsoundness of his opinions, must be considered as highly creditable to him. We certainly cannot wish that Mr. Gladstone's doctrines may become fashionable among public men. But we heartily wish that his laudable desire to penetrate beneath the surface of questions, and to arrive, by long and intent meditation, at the knowledge of great general laws, were much more fashionable than we at all expect it to become.

signs of much patient thought. It is written throughout with excellent taste and excellent temper; nor is it, so far as we have observed, disfigured by one expression unworthy of a gentleman, a scholar, or a Christian. But the doctrines which are put forth in it appear to us, after full and calm consideration, to be false; to be in the highest degree pernicious; to be such as, if followed out in practice to their legitimate consequences, would inevitably produce the dissolution of society; and for this opinion we shall proceed to give our reasons with that freedom which the importance of the subject requires, and which Mr. Gladstone both by precept and by example invites us to use, but, we hope, without rudeness, and, we are sure, without malevolence.

Mr. Gladstone seems to us to be, in many respects, exceedingly well qualified for philosophical investigation. His mind is of large grasp; nor is he deficient in dialectical skill. But he does not give his intellect fair play. There is no want of light, but a great want of what Bacon would have called dry light. Before we enter on an examination of this Whatever Mr. Gladstone sees is refracted and theory, we wish to guard ourselves against distorted by a false medium of passions and one misconception. It is possible that some prejudices. His style bears a remarkable ana-persons who have read Mr. Gladstone's book logy to his mode of thinking, and indeed exer- carelessly, and others who have merely heard cises great influence on his mode of thinking. in conversation or seen in a newspaper that His rhetoric, though often good of its kind, the member for Newark has written in defence darkens and perplexes the logic which it should of the Church of England against the supportillustrate. Half his acuteness and diligence, ers of the Voluntary System, may imagine that with a barren imagination and a scanty voca- we are writing in defence of the Voluntary Sysbulary, would have saved him from almost all tem, and that we desire the abolition of the his mistakes. He has one gift most dangerous Established Church. This is not the case. It to a speculator,--a vast command of a kind would be as unjust to accuse us of attacking of language, grave and majestic, but of vague the Church because we attack Mr. Gladstone's and uncertain import,--of a kind of language doctrines, as it would be to accuse Locke of which affects us much in the same way in wishing for anarchy because he refuted Fil which the lofty diction of the chorus of Clouds mer's patriarchal theory of government; or to affected the simple-hearted Athenian. accuse Blackstone of recommending the confiscation of ecclesiastical property because he

ω γη του φθεγματος, ως ιερον, και σεμνον, και τερατωδες.

denied that the right of the rector to tithe was

When propositions have been established, derived from the Levitical law. It is to be and nothing remains but to amplify and deco- observed that Mr. Gladstone rests his case on rate them, this dim magnificence may be in entirely new grounds, and does not differ more place. But if it is admitted into a demonstra- widely from us than from some of those who ion, it is very much worse than absolute non-have hitherto been considered as the most sense--just as that transparent haze through illustrious champions of the Church. He is which the sailor sees capes and mountains of Lot content with the "Ecclesiastical Polity," false sizes and in false bearings, is more dan- and rejoices that the latter part of that cele gerous than utter darkness. Now, Mr. Glad-brated work "does not carry with it the weight stone is fond of employing the phraseology of of Hooker's plenary authority." He is not which we speak in those parts of his work content with Bishop Warburton's "Alliance of which require the utmost perspicuity and pre- Church and State." "The propositions of that cision of which human language is capable, work generally," he says, "are to be received and in this way he deludes first himself, and with qualification;" and he agrees with Bolingthen his readers. The foundations of his broke in thinking that Warburton's whole thetheory, which ought to be buttresses of ada-ory rests upon a fiction. He is still less satismant, are made out of the flimsy materials fied with Paley's "Defence of the Church," which are fit only for perorations. This fault which he pronounces to be "tainted by the is one which no subsequent care or industry original vice of false ethical principles," and can correct. The more strictly Mr. Gladstone full of the seeds of evil." He conceives that reasons on his premises, the more absurd are Dr. Chalmers has taken a partial view of the the conclusions which he brings out; and subject, and "put forth much questionable matwhen at last his good sense and good nature ter." In truth, on almost every point on which recoil from the horrible practical inferences to we are opposed to Mr. Gladstone, we have on which his theory leads, he is reduced some- our side the authority of some divine, eminent times to take refuge in arguments inconsistent as a defender of existing establishments. with his fundamental doctrines; and sometimes to escape from the legitimate consequences of his false principles under cover of equally false history.

Mr. Gladstone's whole theory rests on this great fundamental proposition-that the Propagation of Religious Truth is one of the prin cipal ends of government, as government. 1 Mr. Gladstone has not proved this proposition, his system vanishes at once.

It would be unjust not to say that this book, though not a good book, shows more talent than many good books. It contains some eloquent and ingenious passages. It bears the


We are desirous, before we enter on the dis cussion of this important qui stion, to point out

clearly a distinction which, though very obvicas, seems to be overlooked by many excellent people. In their opinion, to say that the ends of government are temporal and not spiritual, is tantamount to saying that the temporal welfare of man is of more importance than his spiritual welfare. But this is an entire mistake. The question is not whether spiritual interests be or be not superior in importance to temporal interests, but whether the machinery which happens at any moment to be employed for the purpose of protecting certain temporal interests of a society, be necessarily such a machinery as is fitted to promote the spiritual interests of that society. It is certain that without a division of duties the world could not go on. It is of very much more importance that men should have food than that they should have pianofortes. Yet it by no means follows that every pianoforte-maker ought to add the business of a baker to his own; for if he did so, we should have both much worse music and much worse bread. It is of much more importance that the knowledge of religious truth should be widely diffused Now here are two great objects :-One is the than that the art of sculpture should flourish protection of the persons and estates of citi among us. Yet it by no means follows that zens from injury; the other is the propagation the Royal Academy ought to unite with its pre- of religious truth. No two objects more ensent functions those of the Society for promot-tirely distinct can well be imagined. The ing Christian Knowledge, to distribute theolo- former belongs wholly to the visible and tangigical tracts, to send forth missionaries, to turn ble world in which we live; the latter belongs out Nollekens for being a Catholic, Bacon for to that higher world which is beyond the reach being a Methodist, and Flaxman for being a of our senses. The former belongs to this Swedenborgian. For the effect of such folly life; the latter to that which is to come. Men would be that we should have the worst possi- who are perfectly agreed as to the importance ble Academy of Arts, and the worst possible of the former object, and as to the way of at Society for the Promotion of Christian Know-taining it, differ as widely as possible respect ledge. The community, it is plain, would be ing the latter object. We must therefore pause thrown into universal confusion, if it were before we admit that the persons, be they whe supposed to be the duty of every association they may, who are intrusted with power for which is formed for one good object to pro- the promotion of the former object, ought almote every other good object. ways to use that power for the promotion of the latter object.

limited to this short life and to this visible world. He finds himself surrounded by the signs of a power and wisdom higher than his own; and, in all ages and nations, men of all orders of intellect, from Bacon and Newton down to the rudest tribes of cannibals, have believed in the existence of some superior mind. Thus far the voice of mankind is al most unanimous. But whether there be one God or many-what may be his natural and what his moral attributes--in what relation his creatures stand to him-whether he have ever disclosed himself to us by any other revelation than that which is written in all the parts of the glorious and well-ordered world which he has made-whether his revelation be contained in any permanent record--how that record should be interpreted, and whether it have pleased him to appoint any unerring interpreter on earth-these are questions respecting which there exists the widest diver sity of opinion, and respecting which the great majority of our race has, ever since the dawn of regular history, been deplorably in error.

Mr. Gladstone conceives that the duties of governments are paternal;-a doctrine which we will not believe till he can show us some government which loves its subjects as a father loves a child, and which is as superior in

As to some of the ends of civil government, all people are agreed. That it is designed to protect our persons and our property,-that it is designed to compel us to satisfy our wants, not by rapine, but by industry,-that it is designed to compel us to decide our differences, not by the strong hand, but by arbitration,-intelligence to its subjects as a father is supethat it is designed to direct our whole force, as rior to a child. He tells us, in lofty, though that of one man, against any other society somewhat indistinct language, that "Govern which may offer us injury,-these are propo- ment occupies in moral the place of Toy in sitions which will hardly be disputed. physical science." If government be indeed To Tv in moral science, we do not understand why rulers should not assume all the functions which Plato assigned to them. Why should they not take away the child from the mother, select the nurse, regulate the school, overlook the play-ground, fix the hours of labour and of recreation, prescribe what ballads shall be sung, what tunes shall be played, what books shall be read, what physic shall be swallowed!

Now these are matters in which man, without any reference to any higher being or to any future state, is very deeply interested. Every man, be he idolater, Mohammedan, Jew, Papist, Socinian, Deist, or Atheist, naturally loves life, shrinks from pain, desires those comforts which can be cajoyed only in communities where property is secure. To be murdered, to be tortured, to be robbed, to be sold into slavery, to be exposed to the outrages-why should not they choose our wives, limit of gangs of foreign banditti calling themselves our expenses, and stint us to a certain number patriots-these are evidently evils from which of dishes, of glasses of wine, and of cups of men of every religion and men of no religion tea? Plato, whose hardihood in speculation wish to be protected; and therefore it will was perhaps more wonderful than any other hardly be disputed that men of every religion peculiarity of his extraordinary mind, and who and of no religion have thus far a common shrank from nothing to which his principles interest in well governed. led, went this whole length. Mr. Gladstone is But the hopes and fears of man are not not so intrepid. He contents himself with lave

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ing down this proposition-that, whatever be the body which in any community is employed to protect the persons and property of men, that body ought also, in its corporate capacity, to profess a religion, to employ its power for the propagation of that religion, and to require conformity to that religion, as an indispensable qualification for all civil office. He distinctly declares that he does not in this proposition confine his view to orthodox governments, or even to Christian governments. The circumstance that a religion is false does not, he tells us, diminish the obligation of governors, as such, to uphold it. If they neglect to do so, "we cannot," he says, "but regard the fact as aggravating the case of the holders of such creed." "I do not scruple to affirm," he adds, that if a Mohammedan conscientiously betieves his religion to come from God, and to teach divine truth, he must believe that truth to be beneficial, and beneficial beyond all other things to the soul of man; and he must, therefore, and ought to desire its extension, and to use for its extension all proper and legitimate means; and that, if such Mohammedan be a prince, he ought to count among those means the application of whatever influence or funds he may lawfully have at his disposal for such purposes."

Surely this is a hard saying. Before we admit that the Emperor Julian, in employing his power for the extinction of Christianity, was doing no more than his duty-before we admit that the Arian, Theodoric, would have committed a crime if he had suffered a single believer in the divinity of Christ to hold any civil employment in Italy-before we admit that the Dutch government is bound to exclude from office all members of the Church of England; the King of Bavaria to exclude from office all Protestants; the Great Turk to exclude from office all Christians; the King of Ava to exclude from office all who hold the unity of God-we think ourselves entitled to demand very full and accurate demonstration. When the consequences of a doctrine are so startling, we may well require that its foundations shall be very solid.

can only be secured for right uses by applying to them a religion."

The following paragraph is a specimen of the arguments by which Mr. Gladstone has, as he conceives, established his great fundamental proposition:

Here are propositions of vast and indefinite extent, conveyed in language which has a certain obscure dignity and sanctity,―attractive, we doubt not, to many minds. But the moment that we examine these propositions closely, the moment that we bring them to the test by running over but a very few of the particulars which are included in them, we find them to be false and extravagant. This doctrine which "must surely command universal assent" is, that every association of human beings, which exercises any power whatever, that is to say, every association of human beings,-is bound, as such association, to profess a religion. Imagine the effect which would follow if this principle were really in force during four-and-twenty hours. Take one instance out of a million:-A stagecoach company has power over its horses. This power is the property of God. It is used according to the will of God when it is used with mercy. But the principle of mercy can never be truly or permanently entertained in the human breast without continual reference to God. The powers, therefore, that dwell in individuals acting as a stage-coach company, can only be secured for right uses by applying to them a religion. Every stage-coach company ought, therefore, in its collective capacity, to profess some one faith-to have its articles, and its public worship, and its tests. That this conclusion, and an infinite number of conclu sions equally strange, follow of necessity from Mr. Gladstone's principle, is as certain as it is that two and two make four. And if the legiti mate conclusions be so absurd, there must be something unsound in the principle.

We will quote another passage of the same sort:

"We may state the same proposition in a more general form, in which it surely must command universal assent. Wherever there is power in the universe, that power is the property of God, the King of that universehis property of right, however for a time withholden or abused. Now this property is, as it were, realized, is used according to the will of the owner, when it is used for the purposes he has ordained, and in the temper of mercy, justice, truth, and faith, which he has taught us. But those principles never can be truly, never can be permanently, entertained in the human but also by public acts of the men composing breast, except by a continual reference to their the public body. They must offer prayer and source, and the supply of the divine grace. praise in their public and collective character The powers, therefore, that dwell in individu--in that character wherein they constitute the als acting as a government, as well as those organ of the nation, and wield its collected that dwell in individuals acting for themselves, force. Whenever there is a reasoning agency

"Why, then, we now come to ask, should the governing body in a state profess a religion? First, because it is composed of individual men; and they, being appointed to act in a defi nite moral capacity, must sanctify their acts done in that capacity by the offices of religion; inasmuch as the acts cannot otherwise be acceptable to God, or any thing but sinful and punishable in themselves. And whenever we turn our face away from God in our conduct, we are living atheistically. . . . . In fulfilment, then, of his obligations as an individual, the statesman must be a worshipping man. But his acts are public-the powers and instruments with which he works are public→→ acting under and by the authority of the law, he moves at his word ten thousand subject arms; and because such energies are thus essentially public, and wholly out of the range of mere individual agency, they must be sanctified not only by the private personal prayers and piety of those who fill public situations,

there is a moral duty and responsibility in- | recognition of the doctrine of national person. volved in it The governors are reasoning ality can justify. National honour and good agents for the nation, in their conjoint acts as faith are words in every one's mouth. How such. And therefore there must be attached to do they less imply a personality in nations this agency, as that without which none of our than the duty towards God, for which we now responsibilities can be met, a religion. And contend? They are strictly and essentially this religion must be that of the conscience of distinct from the honour and good faith of the the governor, or none." individuals composing the nation. France is done to her is a moral act, and a moral act a person to us, and we to her. A wilful injury quite distinct from the acts of all the individu als composing the nation. Upon broad facts like these we may rest, without resorting to the more technical proof which the laws afford in their manner of dealing with corporations. If, then, a nation have unity of will, have pervad ing sympathies, have the capability of reward and suffering contingent upon its acts, shall we deny its responsibility; its need of religion to meet that responsibility? A nation, then, having a personality, lies under the obligation, like the individuals composing its governing body, of sanctifying the acts of that personality by the offices of religion, and thus we have a new and imperative ground for the existence of a state religion,"


Here again we find propositions of immense extent, and of sound so orthodox and solemn, that many good people, we doubt not, have been greatly edified by it. But let us examine the words closely, and it will immediately become plain, that if these principles be once admitted, there is an end of all society. No combination can be formed for any purpose of mutual help,-for trade, for public works, for the relief of the sick or the poor, for the promotion of art or science, unless the members of

A new ground, certainly, but whether very imperative may be doubted. Is it not perfectly clear, that this argument applies with exactly as much force to every combination of human

ments? Is there any such combination in the world, whether technically a corporation or not, which has not this collective personality from which Mr. Gladstone deduces such extraordi

the combination agree in their theological opinions. Take any such combination at random-the London and Birmingham Railway Company, for example--and observe to what consequences Mr. Gladstone's arguments inevitably lead. "Why should the Directors of the Railway Company, in their collective capacity, profess a religion? First, because the direction is composed of individual men appointed to act in a definite moral capacity bound to look carefully to the property, the limbs, and the lives of their fellow creatures-beings for a common purpose, as to govern bound to act diligently for their constituentsbound to govern their servants with humanity and justice--bound to fulfil with fidelity many important contracts. They must, therefore, sanctify their acts by the offices of religion, or these acts will be sinful and punishable inary consequences? Look at banks, insurance themselves. In fulfilment, then, of his obliga- gas companies, hospitals, dispensaries, assooffices, dock companies, canal companies, tions as an individual, the Director of the Lon-ciations for the relief of the poor, associations don and Birmingham Railway Company must for apprehending malefactors, associations of be a worshipping man. But his acts are public. medical pupils for procuring subjects, associa He acts for a body. He moves at his word tentions of country gentlemen for keeping foxthousand subject arms. And because these hounds, book societies, benefit societies, clubs energies are out of the range of his mere indi- of all ranks, from those which have lined Pallvidual agency, they must be sanctified by pub- Mall and St. James's Street with their palaces, lic acts of devotion. The Railway Directors down to the "Free-and-easy" which meets in must offer prayer and praise in their public the shabby parlour of a village inn. Is there a single one of these combinations to which Mr. Gladstone's argument will not apply as well as to the State? In all these combinations-in the Bank of England, for example, or in the Athenæum Club-the will and agency of the society are one, and bind the dissentient minority. The Bank and the Athenæum have a good faith and a justice different from the good faith and justice of the individual mem bers. The Bank is a person to those who deposit bullion with it. The Athenæum is a person to the butcher and the wine-merchant. If the Athenæum keeps money at the Bank, the two societies are as much persons to each other as England and France. Either society into difficulties. If, then, they have this unity may increase in prosperity; either may fall of will; if they are capable of doing and suffer ing good and evil, can we, to use Mr. Glad. stone's words, "deny their responsibility, or their need of a religion to meet that responsi bility?" Joint-stock banks, therefore, and clubs, "having a personality, lie under the ne

and collective character, in that character wherewith they constitute the organ of the Company, and wield its collected power. Wherever there is reasoning agency, there is moral responsibility. The Directors are reasoning agents for the Company. And there

fore there must be attached to this agency, as

that without which none of our responsibilities can be met--a religion. And this religion must be that of the conscience of the Director himself, or none. There must be public worship and a test. No Jew, no Socinian, no Presbyterian, no Catholic, no Quaker, must be permitted to be the organ of the Company, and to wield its collected force." Would Mr. Gladstone really defend this proposition? We are sure that he would not; but we are sure that to this proposition, and to innumerable similar propositions, his reasoning inevitably leads.


"National will and agency are indisputably one, binding either a dissentient minority of the subject body, in a manner that nothing but the

cessity of sanctifying that personality, by the offices of religion;" and thus we have "a new and imperative ground" for requiring all the directors and clerks of joint-stock banks, and all the officers of clubs, to qualify by taking the


The truth is, that Mr. Gladstone has fallen into an error very common among men of less talents than his own. It is not unusual for a person who is eager to prove a particular proposition, to assume a major of huge extent, which includes that particular proposition, without ever reflecting that it includes a great deal more. The fatal facility with which Mr. Gladstone multiplies expressions stately and sonorous, but of indeterminate meaning, eminently qualifies him to practise this sleight on himself and on his readers. He lays down broad general doctrines about power, when the only power of which he is thinking is the power of governments,—about conjoint action, when the only conjoint action of which he is thinking is the conjoint action of citizens in a state. He first resolves on his conclusion. He then makes a major of most comprehensive dimensions; and, having satisfied himself that it contains his conclusion, never troubles himself about what else it may contain. And as soon as we examine it, we find that it contains an infinite number of conclusions, every one of which is a monstrous absurdity.

It will hardly be denied that the security of the persons and property of men is a good ob ject, and that the best way, indeed the only way, of promoting that object is to combine men together in certain great corporations-which are called states. These corporations are very variously, and, for the most part, very imperfectly organized. Many of them abound with frightful abuses. But it seems reasonable to believe that the worst that ever existed was, on the whole, preferable to complete anarchy.

Now, reasoning from analogy, we should say that these great corporations would, like all other associations, be likely to attain their end most perfectly if that end were kept singly in view; and that to refuse the services of those who are admirably qualified to promote that end, because they are not also qualified to promote some other end, however excellent, seems at first sight as unreasonable as it would be to provide, that nobody who was not a fellow of the Antiquarian Society should be a governor of the Eye Infirmary; or that nobody who was not a member of the Society for promoting Christianity among the Jews should be a trustee of the Theatrical Fund.

It is impossible to name any collection of human beings to which Mr. Gladstone's reasonings would apply more strongly than to an army. Where shall we find more complete unity of action than in an army? Where else do so many human beings implicitly obey one ruling mind? What other mass is ere which moves so much like one man? Where is such tremendous power intrusted to those who command? Where is so awful a responsibility laid upon them? If Mr. Gladstone has made out, as he conceives, an imperative necessity for a state religion, much more has he made it out to be imperatively necessary that every army should, in its collective capacity, profess a religion. Is he prepared to adopt this consequence?

It is perfectly true, that it would be a very good thing if all the members of all associations in the world were men of sound religious views. We have no doubt that a good Christian will be under the guidance of Christian principles, in his conduct as director of a canal company or steward of a charity dinner. If he were to recur to a case which we before put-a member of a stage-coach company, he would, in that capacity, remember that "a righteous man regardeth the life of his beast." But it does not follow that every association of men must, therefore, as such association, profess a religion. It is evident that many great and useful objects can be attained in this world only by co-operation. It is equally evident that there cannot be efficient co-operation, if men proceed on the principle that they must not co-operate for one object unless they agree about other objects. Nothing seems to us more beautiful or admirable in our social system, than the facility with which thousands of people, who per-tened to join Eugene, who had probably just haps agree only on a single point, combine confessed himself to a Popish priest. The their energies for the purpose of carrying that generals consulted together, formed their plan single point. We see daily instances of this. in concert, and repaired each to his own post. Two men, one of them obstinately prejudiced Marlborough gave orders for public prayers. against missions, the other president of a mis- The English chaplains read the service at sionary society, sit together at the board of an the head of the English regiments. The hospital, and heartily concur in measures for Calvinistic chaplains of the Dutch army, the health and comfort of the patients. Two with heads on which hand of bishop had men, one of whom is a zealous supporter and never been laid, poured forth their supplicathe other a zealous opponent of the system pur- tions in front of their countrymen. In the sued in Lancaster's schools, meet at the Men- mean time the Danes would listen to their Ludicity Society, and act together with the utmost theran ministers; and Capuchins might en cordiality. The general rule we take to be un- courage the Austrian squadrons, and pray to doubtedly this, that it is lawful and expedient the Virgin for a blessing on the arms of the for men to unite in an association for the pro- Holy Roman Empire. The battle commences, motion of a good object, though they may and these men of various religions all act like differ with respect to other objects of a still members of one body. The Catholic and the higner importance. Protestant generals exert themselves to assis

On the morning of the 13th of August, in the year 1704, two great captains, equal in authority, united by close private and public ties, but of different creeds, prepared for a battle, on the event of which were staked the liberties of Europe. Marlborough had passed a part of the night in prayer, and before daybreak received the sacrament according to the rites of the Church of England. He then las

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