Henry Yates Satterlee.

New Testament churchmanship and the principles upon which it was founded online

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New Testament


Principles upon which it was Founded



Bishop of IVasbiugion



loxg:\iaxs, green and go.









Copyright, 1899
By Longmans, Green and Co.

John Wilson and Son, Camuridge, U. S. A.


Communicants ant) €i)nrri) IHcrkas








TT/'ESTERN Christendom, through the domi-
VV nating influences of the Church of Rome,
during the past thousand years has witnessed the
gradual substitution of another type of Christianity
for that of apostohc days. In the Apostohc Church
itself, a true balance was preserved between the in-
ward or subjective, and the outward or objective,
religious life of the Church, and we read that, under
the influences of the Holy Ghost, the Spirit of Truth,
those baptized on the Day of Pentecost continued
steadfastly in the Apostles' doctrine and fellowship
and in the breaking of bread and in prayers. This is
a fundamental principle of the religion of Christ.
The inward and outward are so bound together in
His Incarnation that they are mutually dependent
upon one another; nor can the highest spiritual life,
which is life in Christ, be fully attained save through
their union. Each, without the other, gives rise to
an abnormal, one-sided development of religion;
and this has been the error into which the Roman
Church has fallen. By unduly exaggerating the out-
ward at the expense of the inward, she not only lost
that which St. Paul calls tJie proportion or analogy of
the Faith} but also acquired an untrue, unspiritualized

1 ci're irpo(f)y]T^iav, Kara rr}v avaXoyiav ri]s iricrTfws (Rom. xii. 6).


conception of the outward. It is true that she pre-
serves outwardly the form of the Faith once for all
delivered to the saints, but while she boasts of her or-
thodoxy and challenges the world to find a flaw of
heresy in her apostolic doctrine, she has lost the apo-
stolic spirit ; and that want has been felt ever since the
rise of the Papacy, by all believers who have gone back
to the apostolic records that they might drink in the
spirit of the New Testament Church. Consequently,
ever since the thirteenth century, there have been in
Europe a series of reformations, or attempted refor-
mations, all in the direction of inward personal loy-
alty to Christ in contradistinction to outward loyalty
to church organization. And it should be carefully
noted, that the New Testament itself has been the
fount of inspiration for all those consecutive move-
ments which date back to Peter Waldo in Italy,
to John Wickliffe in England, to John Huss in
Bohemia, to the Brethren of the Common Life (of
which Thomas a Kempis was a member) in Hol-
land, and to the Mystics in Germany. The inven-
tion of printing about A. D. 1450, and the widespread
circulation and knowledge of the Holy Scriptures
which followed, prepared the way for the Protestant
Reformation, about seventy years later, when these
different movements were all brought together under
the leadership of Martin Luther. "Justification by
Faith," the inspiring watchword of the Reformation,
was the expression of a great spiritual want. It
was a great catholic cry of human nature which
had been smothered for centuries by the so-called
Catholic Church. The Reformation was a protest
in behalf of the inward which had been ignored


for the outward ; a protest in behalf of the sacred-
ness of human personahty, of the rights of the indi-
vidual and of the freedom of conscience, all of which
had been sacrificed for outward forms, outward profes-
sions of belief and the preservation of church organi-
zation. And the fact that the Protestant Reformation
has held its own for nearly four hundred years, unit-
ing so many widely different sects under one name
and in one common cause, is not only a sign of the
extent of the spiritual disease which God raised it up
to cure, but also a lesson from God, imprinted on
the pages of church history for all future time, that
the inward is never hereafter to be sacrificed for the
outward, in the Church of Christ. It is also a fact
never to be forgotten, that Protestantism, through
the inward guidance of the Spirit of Truth, became
Catholic enough to hold to the Scriptures, the Catho-
lic Creeds, and the two Sacraments ordained by
Christ Himself.

But if the Roman Church has gone too far in
one direction, Protestantism, not even excepting
the Anglican Communion, has gone too far in the
other. The Roman Church gradually lost the Spirit
of apostolic truth, while she preserved the letter
of formal orthodoxy. Losing the spirit, she lost,
also, those things which are especially revealed by
the Spirit of God ; and then followed, naturally, the
corruption of those truths which were unspiritually
held. The Protestants, on the other hand, in their
intense desire to recover the spiritual, lost the true
meaning of the outward in relation to the inward,
and then fell into the error of making their own
subjective impressions the ultimate criterion of the


objective truths of Revelation. In this way, the
Continental Reformers were unconsciously led into
the error of protesting, not only against the corrup-
tions of Rome, but also against the Scripture truths
which had been thus corrupted.

The English reformers were held back from making
the same mistake through national and religious
causes, the majority of which had been influencing
the life of the people ever since the days of Stephen
Langton and the Magna Charta. Not the least of
these was a national reverence for the Holy Scrip-
tures, which had been growing for centuries, and
which was immeasurably deepened by Wicklifife's
Knglish translation of the Bible. Yet, while the
independent attitude of the English Church was
unique in Western Europe, and while, by preserving
the balance between the outward and inward ele-
ments of Christ's religion, she approached more
nearly the standard of the New Testament Church
than any other religious body, even the English re-
formers themselves could not altogether emancipate
themselves from the influences which had dominated
the thought of Western Christendom in the centuries
that preceded the reformation. In the sixteenth
century, through the power of the Papacy, the whole
conception of the Church of Christ had gradually,
insensibly, fallen more and more below the New Tes-
tament level. In St. Paul's P2pistles the Church is
held up as the Body of Christ, connected indissolubly
with its head in Heaven; and to the minds of New
Testament Christians there was no possibility of any
separation between Christ and His Church. What-
ever Christ was His Church was. But in the Middle


Ages, through the persistent teachings of the Papacy,
the idea of a vicarious ministry became prevalent:
a mediatorial priesthood was interjected between God
and believers ; and the logical and inevitable conse-
quence of this interjection was a separation between
Christ and His Church. Protestantism was not re-
sponsible for having an imperfect conception of the
Church, when the true idea had been thus distorted ;
it can hardly be expected, therefore, that Protestant
theology, after negatively protesting against the cor-
ruptions of Rome, should have been able to go
further, and do the positive work of restoring the
original Faith as it was before it had been corrupted.
In the violence of the reaction against Rome, and es-
pecially against those doctrines of the Primitive
Church which Rome had most grossly perverted,
Protestantism overlooked the fact that the Church is
called in the New Testament itself the Body of
Christ, and went to the opposite extreme of under-
valuing Sacraments, Apostolic Order, Apostolic Au-
thority, and everything connected with the Church.
This one-sidedness of Protestantism, in overempha-
sizing the subjective and ignoring the objective side
of Christianity, was imperfectly recognized, until it
was followed by its own inevitable consequences in
Church history; and then, slowly but surely, those
Scriptures which had been ignored began to reassert
their influence, until, at last, that same authority
which was appealed to three hundred years ago as
supporting the sacredness of private judgement, is
now being appealed to as supporting the sacredness
of church principles against individualism and an
exaggeration of private judgement. Indeed, it may


be said that the New Testament itself, whicli caused
the Protestant Reformation, is now causing the refor-
mation of Protestantism.

In view of these facts, tlic writer has felt no hesita-
tion in adopting for the title of this book the name
of " New Testament Churchmanship."

As a glance at the Table of Contents will show, it
is an humble attempt to differentiate between church
principles as set forth in the New Testament itself,
and church principles as they appeared at the time
of the Reformation, in the mediaeval setting and
interpretation of the Church of Rome. As this con-
trast cannot be fully realized in all its bearings un-
less the correlation between the natural and spiritual,
which is the central truth of the doctrine of the In-
carnation, is kept constantly in mind, the author in
the first three chapters has first emphasized this
truth itself, as it stands revealed in the Incarnation
and Resurrection of Christ, before passing more
directly to the Church, which is an extension of the
Incarnation, and to the consideration of New Testa-
ment Churchmanship which was founded on the
doctrine of the Incarnation.

Though the author has not hesitated to criticise
Protestant Theology frankly and fearlessly, his words
have been dictated by no unfriendly spirit, but,
on the contrary, by a deep and loving sympathy.
Would that the same kind of sympathy might flow
toward the Church of Rome, for she commands our
deepest reverence on account of her apostolic origin.
Two of Christ's own Apostles were associated together
as her founders; an h'pistle in the New Testament
itself was addressed to her first members; in the


early Church she was the buhvark of orthodoxy and
the protector of the weak; and to-day she preserves,
in outward form, not only the ancient Faith, but hal-
lowed heritages and Catholic usages sanctified by the
Christian ages, which Protestantism has thought-
lessly thrown away. If the modern Church of Rome
could return to what she herself was in the ancient
days, she might take a leading part in the coming
reunion of Christendom, but she is paralyzed by a
power that stands outside of her real life. While
the Papacy dominates her destinies, and so long
as the Roman Curia usurps control over her, she
will keep clinging to the letter, and " the letter kill-
eth." The only change which can ever come to her,
until she shakes off this yoke of bondage, is the
change of decay. But *' the spirit giveth life," and
Protestantism, with all its crudeness, its one-sided-
ness, its lack of Apostolic Order and organization,
is instinct with life and energy and hope for the

It has been the aim of the author, throughout this
book, to avoid controversy; to show that Church
doctrines, apart from those exaggerations which
challenge controversy, are really Bible truth; and to
keep the unity of the spirit in the bond of peace.
In the chapters on "Apostolic Succession" and
" Christian Sacerdotalism," he has followed, some-
times quite closely, the line of thought marked out
by Canon Moberly in his valuable and most helpful
work on ** Ministerial Priesthood." When the repre-
sentative character of the ordained Priesthood of the
Christian Church is clearly seen and understood, in
its true light, the plane of cleavage will be found be-


tween a true and a false sacerdotalism, and no room
will be left for suspicion or prejudice.

The author would take this opportunity of ex-
pressing his indebtedness to Dr. William C. Rives
for kindly and painstaking aid in correcting the
proofsheets; and to the Editor of the " Independent"
for his courtesy in consenting to the reprint, as por-
tions of chapters, of two papers by the writer which
have appeared in that journal.

There is to-day an ever increasing number of ear-
nest Christian men and women who, in their longings
for the coming of Christ's Kingdom on earth, desire
above all else to follow that high ideal of the Church
which inspired the first believers, to aim for that
kind of unity which Christ set forth in His high-
priestly prayer the night before His Crucifixion, and
to be filled with the New Testament spirit in doing
Christ's work.

It was the privilege of the author, while in charge
of Calvary Parish, New York, to be lielped and
cheered by a band of church workers who were
inspired by such aims; to instruct them, at the
monthly meetings of the Communicants' Union, re-
garding the principles of New Testament Church-
manship ; and to study with them how rector and
people might co-operate in applying these same
principles to the conditions of our modern church
life. And it was at the request of those communi-
cants, made one memorable Christmastide, that this
book has been written.

Henry Y. Satterlee.

Christmas Kvk, 1S98.





Unique significance of the Birth of Christ in History and

Revelation 1-2

Present day tendency to doubt the fact of the Virgin Birth . . 2

// is objected:

{a) that only two of the Gospels record the fact ;

{b) that there is only one reference to it in Prophecy;

(ir) that there is no mention of it in the Epistles ;

{d) that it is an unnecessary miracle of no theological

importance 3

In answer to such objections it must be considered :

that if the account of the Nativity is dropped from the

records, the integrity of the Gospel History is destroyed ;

that the same objections apply with equal force to the

narratives of the Resurrection and Ascension 3-4

Evidences of Genuineness in the Records themselves :

Simplicity and conciseness of style.

The narratives of St. Matthew and St. Luke.

Marked absence of the miraculous in the Story, apart

from the angelic visions and messages 5-9

Si. yohtis Gospel :

It contains no record of the fact, but the Miraculous

Birth necessarily implied in chap. i. 14.

St. John also silent regarding the institution of Baptism

and the Eucharist but refers to both by implication

(chap. iii. 4, and vi.) 9-13



But it is objected : Page

that the authenticity of the Gospels themselves is doubtful ;
that the canon was formed in an uncritical age-
that ancient Gospels may be discovered in which the nar-
rative of the Virgin Birth is wanting.

Such objections the result of ignorance of the real facts.

Modern methods of criticism different, but scholarship
equally e.xact and conscientious in the first three centuries 14-16

Results of critical research in the last twenty-five years all tend
to establish authenticity and early date of the Gospels.
Latest criticism fixes the date of the three synoptic Gospels

within forty years after the Ascension 17

Witness of Irenxus ; the Muratorian Fragment ; the Dia-
tessaron of Tatian 1S-19

Evidences that belief in the Virgin iJirth of our Lord was
general in this early period.

Ignatius; Justin Martyr; Denial of the fact by the
Ebionitcs 21

Mythic theory of the \'irgin lUrth

Cannot be sustained by the facts 23

Theory that it was a legend equally untenable ;

It must therefore be accepted as historic fact 24-25



The real nature of the Incarnation cannot be interjjreted apart

from the Virgin IJirth of Christ 26

Fundamental principal of the Incarnation — the perfect union
of the Divine and human in Jesus Christ
Inconceivable that the Godhead could assume imperfect

or sinful manhood . , 27

The first Adam free from the taint of hereditary sin.
'i'hc human nature of Christ was also sinljss.

In both the will was free from bias toward sin 28

If Christ had inherited a sinful nature, the i)icsence of


a superhuman moral power in His Manhood would have
been necessary to counteract the bias toward sin; but this
would have destroyed His freedom of will and the reality

of His temptations 29

Therefore the Virgin birth of Christ is not an unnecessary mira-
cle, — Christ, the Second Adam, the Progenitor of a new
race, must have been Himself a New Creation . . .



Christ, the Word made Flesh, brought Heaven and earth to-
gether in His own Person 31

Therefore life in Christ includes both the physical and spiritual.
The New Testament teaches that the sanctification of the
body is inseparable from that of the soul.

Contrast between the First and Second Adam :

First Adam and his descendants " of the earth, earthy."
Different meaning of " sons of God" in the Old and New

Testaments 32

New principle of life imparted to humanity through the

Incarnation 34

First Adam before the fall, possessed an uncorrupted body.
Physical corniption, one result of the fall.
The human nature of the Second Adam made incorrupti-
ble by His conquest over sin.

Belief of St. Peter and St. Paul that Christ's Body could
not see corruption.

Therefore it must have been created uncorrupt through
the conception by the Holy Ghost 35~36


Mystery of personality :

Each human personality separate and distinct from all

others -t^-j

If Christ had a human father He would have had a human

Christ is one Divine Person, — He has a human body, soul,
and will, but no human personality.

Controversies in the Nicene, and post-Nicene periods, in re-
gard to the Personality of Christ 3S-39

The fact of Christ's Divine Selfhood as it interprets His con-
sciousness - 40



Christ was Man, not a man ; the Elder Brother of the whole
human race; His love not limited to mother and brethren,
but embraced all who did the will of God.
Because He was a Divine Person His Love was free from

the limitations of human love 41-43

Christ's Self-assertion attracts, instead of antagonizing us, —
because He is a Divine Person; His Personality not out-
side of our own 44

Importance of this truth as interpreting the Atonement, the

Ktsurrection, the Ascension 44-46




Universality of belief in a future life 47

Religion of the ancient Egyptians :

their ideas of immortality : the myth of Osiris .... 48
The Children of Israel uninfluenced by this Egyptian belief
Silence of the Old Testament regarding Immortality

Explanation of this fact 49-50


Immortality found only in Christ S'-S-


Ciod's revelation of Himself to Moses 53

Our Lord's answer to the Saddncccs 54

God revealed to the Hebrews as tlie Source of Life and


Their hopes for the future centred in the promised Messiah 55


(Jur Lord's revelation of Himself as tfu- Life 55-5^

No ground for the belief that immortality is inherent in

human nature

Christ alone the Way, the Truth, and the Life .... 59

The Resurrection establishes this truth forever

Lifluencc of the Resurrection on the lives of the early
Christians 59-^



Realization of the oneness of the present and future life in

Christ 6i


The resurrection of the body 62

Immortality of soul and body inseparable 63

The twofold effects of sin 64


Prevalence of false views of the relation between physical and

spiritual 64

Spiritual knowledge not comprehended by the natural man . 65

Union of the natural and spiritual through the Incarnation 66

The Incarnation and the Resurrection 67




The life lost by Adam in Paradise, — restored by Christ . . 68
Story of Adam's fall unveils a universal spiritual truth . . 69

Nature of Adafn's sin :

Man created with a free will; this involves freedom to sin 70

Sin might have been prevented :

(i) by creating man without a free will, (2) by removing

all temptation to sin ; (3) by forcibly restraining man

from sin ; but the moral life would thus have been made

impossible for man 71

Suggestion to sin came from an outer source.

St. John's definition : ^^ Sin is lawlessness."

Independence of God the root sin. True freedom comes

from obedience to law, whether physical or spiritual.

Spirit of lawlessness isolates us from God 72

Results of Adafn's sin :

(i) Separation from God; (2) Doubt: of God's Law, — of
God's Love ; (3) Ignorance : knowledge of evil shuts out
real knowledge of good, — ignorance of goodness means
ignorance of God 73-77


If knowledge of God is eternal life, then ignorance of (iod
means death.

Therefore the setting up of self-will against God's will,
necessarily entails death.


Promise regarding " the seed of the woman " fulfilled in Christ 78
Consciousness of separation from God removed only

through the Cross 79

Dependence on God the beginning of the religious life . 80


The Atonement not completed at the Cross 81

Exclusive attention directed to the Death of Christ by both

Roman and Protestant Theology 82

Consequences of this teaching. ( i ) The Cross is made a
symbol not only of death to sin, but of new birth to right-
eousness. (2) An austere and one-sided aspect of Christ-
ianity is presented. (3) Failure to realize the meaning of
the Resurrection and Ascension, and consequently, of the
creation of the Church, the Mission of the Holy Ghost,
the efficacy of the Sacraments. (4) A divorce between
faith and works. (5) Revival of the old Dualism . . 83-85


Contrast in the attitude of the New Testament Church . 85
Early Christians lived in the thought of their risen Lord.

Joyousness of the New Testament 87

Power of the Resurrection to quicken both body and soul

Sanctification of the body a ruling thought in the Christian

life 88


TJie Great Commission :

(i) Christ speaks as King

(2) He therefore sends His Apostles forth into all the

(3) They arc to make members of His Kingdom through
Raptism 89-90

Haptism not instituted till after the Resurrection
Both body and soul must be born from above.
Baptism by " water " and " the Spirit."


Christ seals union of believer with Himself in Baptism,
wherein, (i) the natural and spiritual are joined together ;
(2) we are made partakers of Christ's risen Life; (3) and

members of His everlasting Kingdom 91

St. Paul's teaching regarding Baptism 92

If Baptism is undervalued it is because real meaning of the

Resurrection is forgotten.

Simplicity of outward sign in Baptism:

but stupendous pledge accompanies it : the word of the

Word of God 94

Both Baptism and the Lord's Supper depend for their elticacy

on the Word of Christ q6



Christ's work of Redemption not completed on the Cross, but

continued by Him as Prophet, Priest, and King in Heaven 97

Relation between Christ's Heavenly Priesthood and the Holy

Eucharist 9S-99

Meaning of " blood " in the Old and New Testaments.
" The Blood of Christ " means not the Death, but the Life

of Christ ICO

Doctrine of Transubstantiation inconceivable to St. Paul

or St John loi

The Blood of Christ meant to them the Life of the Risen

and Ascended Lord.

False impression conveyed by the substitution of the crucifix

for the cross upon the altars of the Roman Church . . . 102

Christ's sacrifice continues in the offering of His life in

Heaven : — therefore there can be no renewal or repetition

of the Sacrifice 104

Sacrifice of intercession and thanksgiving for men part of
Christ's Heavenly Offering 105

Heavenly significance of the Holy Eucharist.

The Lord's Supper was anticipatory 106

Christ offered Himself in ivill, before He offered Himself

on the Cross.

(i) It was instituted beforehand in remembrance of His

Death and Passion. (2) It sets before us the Body and

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Online LibraryHenry Yates SatterleeNew Testament churchmanship and the principles upon which it was founded → online text (page 1 of 21)