Richard Chenevix Trench.

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ADDIKON Al-KXANDER LIKRARY,

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THE FITNESS OF HOLY SCRIPTURE
FOR UNFOLDING THE SPIRITUAL LIFE OF MEN



BEING

/

THE HULSEAN LECTURES

FOR THE YEAR M.DCCC.XLV.



THE HULSEAN LECTURES



FOR M.DCCCXLV AND M.DCCC.XLVI.



BY RICHARD CHENEVIX TRENCH, M.A„

VICAR OF ITCHEN-STOKE, HANTS; PROFESSOR OF DIVINITY,

king's college, LONDON ; EXAMINING CHAPLAIN TO

THE LORD BISHOP OF OXFORD ; AND LATE

HULSEAN LECTURER.



SECOND EDITION, REVISED.



CAMBRIDGE :

MACMILLAN; BARCLAY, AND MACMILLAN.

LONDON: JOHN W. PARKER.

1847.



/sJTL




13rtntcU at ttie ©ntDerstts ^prcss.



ADVERTISEMENT.

I HAVE not felt myself at liberty to make more
than a few verbal alterations, or here and there to
recast a sentence, or add a clause, in these Lec-
tures, on the occasion of their second appearance.
I have inserted indeed a few brief passages, which
originally belonging to the Discourses, had been
omitted in the delivery, and have to the Second
Series appended a considerable number of Notes in
confirmation or illustration of statements made in
the text. These having been asked for in more
quarters than one, I trust may not be found unac-
ceptable to some readers.

Itchen-stoke, Nov. 1.9, 1847.



Substance of certain Clauses in the Will
OF The Rev. J. Hulse, M.A.

(Dated July 21, 1777.)

He founds a Lectureship in the University of Cam-
bridge.

The Lecturer to be a " Clergyman in the Univer-
sity of Cambridge, of the degree of Master of Arts,
and under the age of forty years." He is to be
elected annually^ " on Christmas-Day, or within seven
days after, by the V ice-Chancellor for the time being,
and by the Master of Trinity College, and the Master
of St John's College, or any two of them."" In case
the Master of Trinity or the Master of St John's
be the Vice-Chancellor, the Greek Professor is to be
the third Trustee.

The duty of the said Lecturer is, by the Will,
" to preach twenty Sermons in the whole year," at
" St Mary Great Church in Cambridge ; " but the
number having been found inconvenient, application
was made to the Court of Chancery for leave to
reduce it, and eight Sermons only are now required.
These are to be printed at the Preacher's expense,
within twelve months after the delivery of the last
Sermon.



VI



The subject of the Lectures is to be " the Evidence
for Revealed ReHgion ; the Truth and Excellence
of Christianity ; Prophecies and Miracles ; direct or
collateral proofs of the Christian Religion, especially
the collateral arguments ; the more difficult texts,
or obscure parts of the Holy Scriptures ; " or any
one or more of these topics, at the discretion of the
Preacher,



CONTENTS
FOR THE YEAR 1845.

LECTURE I.

INTRODUCTORY LECTURE.
PSALM CXIX. 18.

PAGR

Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of

thy law X

LECTURE II.

THE UNITY OF SCRIPTURE.

EPHESIANS L 9, 10.

Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according
to his good pleasure, which he hath purposed in himself;
that in the dispensation of the fidness of times he might
gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are
in heaven and which are on earth ; even in him 19

LECTURE III.

THE MANIFOLDNESS OP SCRIPTURE.

MATTHEW XIV. 20.

They did all eat, and were filled 37

LECTURE IV.

THE ADVANCE OF SCRIPTURE.

HEBREWS I. 1, 2.

God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time
past unto the fathers by the prophets, hath in these last days
spoken unto us by his Son 57



viii CONTENTS.

^ LECTURE V.

THE PAST DEVELOPMENT OF SCRIPTURE.
JOHN XII. G.

PACK

These things understood not his disciples at the first; hut when
Jesus was glorified, then remembered they that these things
were written of him 74

LECTURE VI.

THE INEXHAUSTIBILITY OF SCRIPTURE.

ISAIAH XIL 3.

With joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation . 90

LECTURE VII.

THE FRUITFULNESS OF SCRIPTURE.

EZEKIEL XLVII. 9.

A7id it shall come to pass, that every thing that liveth, which

moveth, whithersoever the rivers shall com£, shall live 107

LECTURE VIII.

THE FUTURE DEVELOPMENT OF SCRIPTURE.

REVELATION VL 2.
Conquering and to conquer 123



CONTENTS

FOR THE YEAR 1846.

LECTURE I.

INTRODUCTORY LECTURE.

HAGGAI II. 7.
The Desire of all nations shall come 143



PAe£



LECTURE II.

THE VANQUISHER OF HADES.
MARK XVI. 3.

Who shall roll us away the stone from the door of the sepulchre? 162

LECTURE III.

THE SON OF GOD.
ACTS XIV. II.

And luhen the people saw what Paul had done, they lifted up
their voices, saying in the speech of Lycaonia, The gods
are come down to us in the likeness of men . 179

LECTURE IV.

THE PERFECT SACRIFICE.

MICAH VI. 6, 7.

Wfierewith shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself
before the high God? shall I come before him with burnt-
offerings ; with -calves of a year old? Will the Lord be
pleased with thousands of rams, or with ten thousands
of rivers of oil ? shall I give my Jirstborn for my trans-
gression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? ... 195
T. H. L. b



X CONTENTS.

LECTURE V.

THE RESTORER OF PARADISE.
GENESIS V. 29.

PACK

And he called his name Noah, saying. This same shall com-
fort us concerning our work and toil of our hands, because
of the groimd which the Lord hath cursed 212

LECTURE VI.

THE REDEEMER FROM SIN.

ROMANS VJI. 21, 23.

I jind then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present
with me. For I delight in the law of Ood after the
inward man: hut I see another law in my members,
warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me
into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members . . . 227

LECTURE VII.

^ THE FOUNDER OF A KINGDOM.

HEBREWS XI. 10.

A city which hath foundations, whose builder^ and maker is God . 246



LECTURE VIII.

CONCLUDING LECTURE.

1 THESSALONIANS V. 21.

Prove all things ; hold fast that which is good 264



LECTURE I.

INTRODUCTORY LECTURK

Psalm CXIX. 18,

Open thou mine eyes, that I may hehold wondrous things
out of thy law.

It was with a true insight into the sad yet needful con-
ditions of the Truth miHtant in a world of error, that
he who has of such just title given his name to these
Lectures, which I am now permitted to deliver in this
place, devoted so largely of his temporal means to
the securing among us a succession of discourses,
having more or less nearly to do with the establishing
and vindicating of that Truth against all gainsayers
and opposers. For such apologies of our holy Faith
as he desired by this and other kindred foundations
of which he was the author, to promote and set for-
ward, are deeply grounded in the very nature of that
Faith itself — and this, whether they be defensive or
aggressive, whether they be of the Truth clearing
itself from unjust aspersions, or carrying the war, as
it must often do, into the quarters of error, and prov-
ing itself not merely to be 'true, but to be Truth abso-
lute, to the exclusion of all rival claims. We know,
as a matter of history, that Christian literature did
begin, as far back as we can trace it, with works of
this character; they are among the earliest which
have reached us ; probably among the earliest which
existed. Nor do they belong merely to the first ages
of the Church's being, however in them they may

T. H. L. 1



2 LECTURE I. [1R45.

naturally have had a special importance. The Truth,
like Him Avho gave it, will alivays be a sign which
shall be spoken against. The forms of the enmity
may change ; the coarser and more brutal accusations
of one age may give place to subtler charges of
another ; but so long as an ungodly world exists, the
enmity itself will remain, and will find utterance. The
Truth, therefore, must ever be succinct, and prompt
to give an answer for itself; and this it does the more
readily, as knowing that not man's glory, but God's
glory, is at hazard, when it is assailed ; as being in-
finitely removed from that pride which might tempt
to the keeping silence, because it knows that the
accusations made against it are unjust ; being rather
full of that humility and love, which make it willingly
condescend to the most wayward, if haply it may win
them to the service of its King.

And this is not all : the Truth cannot pause when
it has thus refuted and thrown back the things that it
knew not, which yet were laid to its charge. In its
very nature it is aggressive also. How should it not
be so ? how should it not make war on the strong-
holds of falsehood and error, when its very task in the
world is to deliver them that were prisoners there ?
how should it not seek to gather men under its ban-
ner, — being moved, as it ever is, with an inward
bleeding compassion for all them that are aliens from
the faith of Christ, as knowing that every man, till he
has found himself in Him, is estranged from the true
home of his spirit, the right centre of his being ?
How should it not press its treasures upon each, com-
mend its medicines to all, when they are medicines
for every man's hurt, treasures which would make



INTRODUCTORY LECTURE. 3

every man rich? when it knows that it has the reality,
of Avhieh every lie is the counterfeit ; that Avhen men
are the fiercest set against it, then are they the most
madly at strife with their OAvn blessedness ?

But this, it might be said, would sufficiently ex-
plain the uses of Christian apology before a world
which resists, or puts by, the Faith ; it would explain
why the Truth should count itself happy to stand, as
it did once in the person of Paul, before Festus and
Agrippa, and in presence of Gentile and Jew, to
make answer for itself. But, allowing this, what
means it when before a congregation of faithful men,
when at one of the great centres of Christian light
and knowledge in our own land, a preacher under-
takes, and that at large and from year to year, the
handling some j)oint of the evidences of our Religion ?
Might not this seem at first as superfluous a form, as
when, upon a day of coronation, a champion rides
forth, and with none but loyal hearts beating in unison
with the multitudinous voices which have hailed his
king and theirs, flings down his glove, and challenges
any that will gainsay the monarch's right to the
crown which hast just been set upon his brows ? Our
task might indeed be superfluous as this, were its only
purpose to convince opposers. There is, blessed be
God, a foregone conclusion in the minds of the faith-
ful, drawn from all which they have known themselves
of the life and power of the Truth, which suflers
them not for an instant to regard it as something yet
in debate, and still to be proved ; since it has already
approved itself iii power and blessing unto them.

And yet even for them a work of Christian apo-
logy may be so constructed as to have its worth and

1—2



LECTURE I. [1845.

If it widen the basis on which their Faith
reposes, if it help them to take count of and use
treasures, which before they had, but which they knew
not before save in part ; if it cause them to pass from
belief to insight ; if it bring out for them the perfect
proportions of the Truth, its singular adaptations to
the pre-established harmonies of the world, as they
had not perceived these before ; if it furnish them
with a clue for guiding some perplexed and wander-
ing brother from his dreary labyrinth of doubt and
error, — if in any of these ways it effectually serve,
surely it has not been in vain. Such uses we acknow-
ledge in Evidences of our Faith, when we constitute
them a part of our discipline in this University ; which
assuredly we do, not as presuming that we have to
deal with any who are yet aliens from that Faith, who
have yet need to be brought to the acknowledging of
the truth as it is in Jesus ; but rather as desiring to
put them who already have drawn in their faith, and
that from better sources, from the lips of their mothers,
from the catechisms of their childhood, from among
the sanctities of their home, in possession of the sci-
entific grounds of that belief, which already, by a
better and more immediate tenure, is theirs.

Nor may we leave wholly out of sight that in a
time like our own, of great spiritual agitations, at a
place like this, of signal intellectual activity, where
oftentimes the low mutterings of distant controversies,
scarcely heard elsewhere, are distinctly audible, — there
can hardly fail to be some j)erplexed with difficulties,
harassed, it may be, with doubts which they do not
welcome, but would give worlds to be rid of for ever
— doubts which, perhaps, the very preciousness of the



INTRODUCTORY LECTURE. 5

Truth in their sight alone magnifies into importance;
for they feel that they are going to hang upon that
Truth all that is clear to them for life and for eter-
nity ; that it must be to them as their spirits' bride ;
and therefore they cannot endure upon it the faintest
breath of suspicion. I say, brethren, that we may
not leave wholly out of mind that one and another
in such perplexity of spirit may be among us here.
Happy above measure he, who has ''a mouth and wis-
dom" given him to meet the necessities of such an
one among his brethren ; who shall help to bring him
into the secure haven of belief, into the confession
that in Christ Jesus are indeed laid up " all," and
those infinite, " treasures of wisdom and knowledge."

But if discourses of the kind which I am com-
mencing to-day, are indeed to be of profit to any,
there appear to be one or two preliminary conditions
in the choice of a subject, most needful to be ob-
served; which failing to observe, we shall, of sure con-
sequence, fall wholly short of those ends of usefulness
which we desire.

And first, a work of Christian defence will be
marred, if the subject which we select be one upon
which none of the great and decisive issues of the
mighty conflict between Truth and error depend ;
as when in jousts and tournaments a knight touches
the shield of some feeble adversary, passing by and
leaving the stronger and more accomplished unchal-
lenged. For thus it is with us, when we go off" upon
some minor point, which, even were it plainly won,
would leave us in no essential degree the better, nor
an adversary the worse ; which he might yield without



6 LECTURE I. [1845

being dislodged from his strongholds of unbelief, with-
out even feeling them less tenable than before.

Or again, it will be to little profit that we deal
with hinderances to men's belief, which once indeed
were real and urgent, but of which the urgency and
reality have long since departed ; if we take our stand
in some part of the battle-field from which the great
turmoil of the conflict has now ebbed and shifted
away ; or conjure up phantom forms of opposition,
which once indeed were living and strong, but now
survive only in the tradition of books, and at this day
practically weaken no man's faith, disturb no man's
inner peace. This, too, Avere a fatal error, to have
failed to take note of that great stream of tendency,
which has borne ks amid other shoals, and near other
rocks, from those among which our forefathers steered
with manful hearts the bark of their faith, and of
God's great mercy made not shipwreck of that faith
amidst them all.

Or, once more. Christian apology fails in its lofti-
est aim, when it addresses not the whole man, but
the man only upon one side, and that not the highest,
of his being ; when it addresses not the conscience,
the affections, the will, but the understanding faculties
alone. How often do we meet in books of Christian
evidence the attempt made to substitute a logical or
mathematical proof of our most holy Faith for a
moral one ; to ascend to that proof by steps which
can no more be denied than the successive steps of a
problem in geometry, and so to drive an adversary
into a corner from whence there shall be no escape.
But there is always an escape for those that in heart
and will are alienated from the truth. At some sta^e



INTRODUCTORY LECTURE. 7

or other of the process they will successfully break
away, or even if they are brought to the end, they
remain not with us long. And we may thank God
that it is so ; for it is part of the glory of the Truth
that it leads in procession no chained, no unwilling
captives — none that do not rejoice in their captivity,
and share in the triumph which they adorn. It is not
therefore that arguments which address themselves to
lower parts of man's being than the highest are to be
rejected — but only their insufficiency acknowledged ;
that they of themselves will never introduce any to
the inner sanctuary of the Faith ; but can only lead
him up to the doors. Most needful are they in their
place ; most needful that Christianity should approve
itself to have a true historic foundation ; that as a
fact in history it should stand as rigid a criticism as
any other fact ; that the books which profess to tell
its story should vindicate for themselves an authentic
character; that the men who wrote those books should
be shoAvn capable and credible witnesses of the things
which they deliver ; that the outworks of our Faith
should be seen to be no less defensible than its
citadel. But after all, the heart of the matter is not
there ; when all is done, men will feel in the deepest
centre of their being that it is the moral which must
prove the historic, and not the historic which can ever
prove the moral ; that evidences draAvn from without
may be accepted as the welcome buttresses, but that
we can know no other foundations, of our Faith than
those which itself supplies. Kevelation, like the sun,
must be seen by its own light ; being itself the highest,
the ultimate appeal with regard to it cannot lie with
any lower than itself. There was indeed a sense in



8 LECTURE I. [1845.

which Christ received the witness of John, but there
was another in which He received not witness of any
man, only his own witness and his Father's. Even so
is it with his Word and his doctrine. There is a
witness which they can receive of men ; there is also
a witness which no other can yield them than them-
selves.

I trust, then, that taking for my argument The
fitness of Holy Scripture for unfolding the spiritual life
of men, and finding' in its adaptations for this a proof
of its divine origin, I shall not fail in these primary
conditions, however immeasurably I shall of necessity
fall below the greatness and grandeur of my theme.

For first this question, Whether Scripture be not
a book capable of doing, and appointed to do, an
higher work than every other book, cannot be re-
garded as one which is not vital. It is felt to be vital
by all those whose aim and purpose is to prove that
it is but a book as other books, and therefore under-
lying the same weakness and incompletenesses as
every other work of men's hands. And these are
many ; since for one direct assault on Christianity as
a delivered fact, there are twenty on the records of
Christianity, or the manner of its delivery. Many a
one who would not venture boldly to enter on the
central question, Avhether the Christ whom the Church
believes, whom not any one passage alone, but the
collective sum of the Scriptures has delivered to us,
be not the highest conceivable revelation of the In-
visible God, and his Incarnation the necessary out-
coming of the perfections of the Godhead, will yet
hover on the outskirts of the conflict, and set himself



INTRODUCTORY LECTURE. 9

to the detecting, as he hopes, a flaw in this narration,
or to the proving the historic evidence for that book
insufiicient. They who pass by the consideration as
one which never rose up before their minds, whether
there has not been a great education of our race,
reaching through all ages, going forward from the
day that God called Abraham from among his fathers'
idols ; and whether this great idea be not as a golden
thread, running through the whole woof and tissue of
Scripture — they who shun altogether considerations
such as these, will yet set themselves diligently to
look for petty discrepancies between one historic
book and another, or for proofs which shall not be
put by, of some later hand than that of Moses in
some notice in the book of Genesis. And however
paltry and petty this warfare may be, it is no doubt
a true instinct of hate which makes them hope to dis-
cover vulnerable points in Scripture, as knowing that
could they really find such, through them they might
eflectually wound Him, of whom the Scripture is the
outcoming and the Word.

Xor, again, can it be said that this is a matter,
which, though once brought into earnest debate, is
now so no more ; or that the earnestness of the struggle
has been now transferred to other parts of the great
controversy between the kingdoms of light and of
darkness. It is not so : the Porphyrys, the Celsuses,
and the Julians of an earlier age, have never wanted
their apt scholars, their worthy successors. The
mantle of the false prophet is as surely dropped and
bequeathed, as the mantle of the true. Who that
knows ought of what is going forward among a peo-
ple, who not in blood only, but in much besides, are



10 LECTURE I. [1845.

most akin to us of all the nations of Europe, will
deny that even now God's Word is tried to the utter-
most ; that it still has need to make good its claims ;
or knowing this, will presume to say how soon we
may not find ourselves in the midst of controversies,
which assuredly have not 3'et run themselves out, nor
by the complete victory of the Truth brought them-
selves to a quiet end?

Nor shall we with this theme be lingering about
the outer precincts of our Faith. Not the external
authority with w^hich these books come to us, but the
inner seal with which they are sealed, the way in
which, like Him of whom they testify, they receive
not witness of men, but by all which they are, by
all which they have wrought, bear witness of them-
selves that they are of God, even the witness of
power, this is our high argument.

And to it perhaps there will be no fitter intro-
duction than a few general remarks on the connexion
in which a book may stand to the intellectual and
spiritual life of men. And would we appreciate the
importance of a book received as absolute law, for
the mental and moral culture of those who in such
wise receive it, the influences which it will exert in
moulding them, if only that book contain any ele-
ments of truth ; let us consider for an instant what
the Koran has been and is to the whole Mohamme-
dan world ; how it is practically the great bond and
band of the nations professing that spurious faith,
holding fast in a community, which is a counterpart,
however feeble, of a Christendom, nations whom
everything else would have tended to separate ; how
it has stamped on them the features of a common



INTRODUCTORY LECTURE. 11

life, and set them, however immeasurably below the
Christian nations, yet well nigh as greatly above all
other nations of the world ; — let us consider this, and
then what the book is that has wrought these mighty
effects — the many elements of fraud and folly which
are mixed up with, and which weaken, the truth which


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