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concession, we might offend the alarmists on the side of plenary inspiration; but, really and in effect, there is no difference betwixt us. perfectly agreed as to the absolute and divine perfection of the word—the optimism of the Bible. We are at one as to the qualities of the opus operatum ; and, if we differ at all, it regards only the modus operandi-and it is just because of our aversion to intrude into things unseen, that we express ourselves so guardedly on the subject. The Bible is divinely perfect; yet in one sense may be regarded as the compound result of the natural and the super-natural—not so natural as to have one tinge of nature's infirmity adhering to it—not so super-natural as wholly to suspend and overbear the laws of man's mental constitution. It is thus that each prophet and historian and apostle of scripture, preserves his own characteristic and complexional variety of style and manner -as much so perhaps as if, instead of writing as inspired, they had been left to write as uninspired men. It were difficult, in these circumstances, to define, how far the miraculous encroached on the ordinary processes of thought and expression. But quite enough surely for us, if we know it to have encroached so far, that the Bible, the resulting Bible, is so good that it could not be made better. We agree with Mr. Carson and others that the Bible is wholly the product of divine authorship-God being the author of the ordinary as well as the miraculous; and it being wholly of His judgment and sovereign determination, to what extent the miraculous should overrule the natural, in order to the effect of furnishing the world with a perfect and infallible word. We do not detract, in the least, from the mastery of God's wisdom and God's will, in the composition of the Bible, though we allow that He was pleased to avail Himself of second causes. In as far as second causes were concerned in the production of the Bible, we would not say that God left the Bible in any degree to the operation of these causes; but, believing as we do in His incessant agency, we would say that He Himself operated by these causes—insomuch that every word, whether suggested to the mind of the writer miraculously or not, was 0:0TVEUSOS ; every word was breathed into him by God. And yet we do not feel alarmed by the expression, that the writers were left to their own varieties of style and expression * -as if it followed on that account, that the Bible was abandoned to the chance of deterioration thereby. If the word was suggested to the writer, it must have been the best word-or if the writer used the very word he would have done though uninspired, or otherwise, was left to his own word, it must have been because it was the best. Between the one and the other, we have still the best possible Bible. This information we distinctly and definitely have in scripture ; and this ought to satisfy us although obliged by our ignorance, to speak uncertainly and indefinitely of the operation within the vail. Enough to know

The miraculous agency of God did not overbear the natural tendency of the human authors of the New Testament to the use of Hebraisms; and hence their Ilellenistic Greek.

that the mind of God, and that too conveyed in the best possible expression, is in every sentence of the Bible. Enough to know that, in virtue of His command over all natural and all supernatural agency, the Bible was all made by God—though unable to assign the limit between the two, or unable to trace the footsteps of God in the making of it.

21. There is diversity of operations, but it is God who worketh all in all; and so much is He all in all throughout the Bible, that not only is every thought as He would have it because His thought, but every word as He would have it because His word. He is the universal agent; yet the whole history of the church bears testimony to His liking, if we may so express it, for the instrumentality of man. He did not send an angel to convert Cornelius; He sent two angels, one to Cornelius and the other to Peter, to arrange a meeting between them—that the words of salvation might be heard from the lips of a fellow-mortal. Even the Bible, of itself and without the enforcements of a human expounder, is not the great instrument of Christianization. It is the Bible in the hands, whether of parents or ministers, set forth in explanation by a living instrument, and urged on the feelings and consciences of men by the energy of a living voice. And God has made use, we know not how far, of this law of human sympathy in the composition of the Bible. In this view, we are not at all startled by the evident copyings of the prophets from each other, or the copyings of the evangelists as alleged

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by those who speculate on the origination of the Gospels, or by the quotations as if memoriter or from the popular translation of the Old Testament into the New It detracts not from the inspiration of the Bible, that we can reason on the formation and transmission of it, and draw evidence from these—just as we do in the ordinary questions of criticism, from the phenomena of human compositions. Whatever the steps were by which each passage or each sentence and word has been introduced into the record, they are there by the appointment of that God, who at the same time has told us of the infallibility of that record, and that though heaven and earth must pass away, not one jot or one tittle of it shall fail. The fact of its being within the four corners of the Bible, is in itself proof of its being part and parcel of God's communication to the world. We believe in the total inspiration, not from what we know of the process, but from what we have been told of the product. Not one word could be altered, but for the worse; and, whether by instruments or without them, the whole authorship both in substance and expression is God's.

22. The next question which we shall discuss but shortly, is, whether this inspiration extends to the whole Bible, or only to parts of it. We have already expatiated on the state of fearful precariousness in which the faith of Christians would be placed, if, instead of the limit between the inspired and the uninspired being just the whole circumference of scripture, that limit were conceived to meander obscurely within the surface of the records

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and we were left without one steadfast or palpable criterion by which to discriminate between the things of God and the things of man. aware of a general impression on this subject, that inspiration was less needed for scripture history than for scripture doctrine. This, we have already stated, proceeds on a confusion of sentiment, in virtue of not distinguishing between the office of inspiration as an importer and its office as an exporter of truth. In discharge of the former office, inspiration is more required for the truths of doctrine than for the facts of history—these facts, in many instances, being first made known, not by revelation at all; but by common observation, and in the exercise of the natural faculties. But in the latter office, even that of an exporter, inspiration may be more required for narrative than for doctrine ; and that, not merely because the manifold details of it are with more difficulty remembered than the leading articles of a system of truthnot merely because the memory requires to be aided in the business of recalling them ; but because the judgment more requires to be aided, in the business of selecting them. It is quite a mistake that the historical parts, either of the Old or the New Testament (we mean the writing or the giving of them forth) required less the guidance of inspiration, than the doctrinal or even the prophetical. Not to speak of the errors in the selection, we ask our readers to think, in such a mass and multitude of materials, what an interminable record it would have been, had each of the various historians been abandoned to the impulses of his own

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