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Illustrative Attempts to Explain the Trinity,..
Proofs of the Doctrine,.
CHAPTER IV.-THE WORKS OF GOD,
God's End, or Purpose, in Creating,.
Creation a Free Act....
Ascribed to God as Triune,.
Distinction Between Creatio Prima and Secunda,..
Creation Through Second Causes,.
God's Relation to His Creation,....
Agreements Between Genesis Account and Findings
Relation of Second Causes to Preservation,
Not Continuous Creation,...
Its Presuppositions and Aim,..
Distinguished as Ordinary and Extraordinary,
Ordinary Providence-Causal and Permissive,.
Ordinary Providence-General and Particular,...
THE DOCTRINE CONCERNING MAN (ANTHROPOLOGY).
Definitions and Scope of the Inquiry,....
CHAPTER I.-MAN'S PRIMITIVE STATE,.
Scripture Account of Man's Creation,...
NEVER, perhaps, has there been more need than at present of settling carefully the great presuppositions to a correct formulation of Christian theology. The need has come from the special direction and activity of modern inquiry and speculative criticism. New conditions have arisen. Theology must face them.
These presuppositions concern the fundamental basis and scope of theology, its subject-matter, its rightful sources, and true method. A safe and justly articulated system of its essential, constitutive doctrines is necessarily conditioned in correct views on these subjects. They, therefore, stand as preliminary and introductory. The whole theological system, as well as many of its particular doctrines, must of necessity vary according as different conceptions are held on these proemial subjects; for these conceptions take the place of first principles in determining dogmatic conclusions. This fact shows the fundamental and vital importance of the questions which thus meet us on the threshold of theology.
As a result of ever-increasing knowledge from continued examination and re-discussion, each new generation attains some additional light for correct and certified view of these questions. Account must always be taken of whatever helpful information has been attained. This rule is justly applicable at all times. But it is specially enforced in our day; for the latter half of the nineteenth century and the opening years of this new century have given these questions an unparalleled attention and investigation. To a most extraordinary extent recent scholarship, in comparative religion, in archæological exploration, in historical research, in science, in philosophy, and in criticism, carried forward with untiring industry, and, sometimes, with hostile or revolutionary spirit, has concentrated itself upon studies along the lines touching these presuppositions of theological intro duction. The settlement and statement of them now must be made under all the light which this scrutinizing scholarship has supplied. Different thinkers may, as they do, disagree as to the value of the results of this recent study and discussion, and the degree in which they are entitled to modify hitherto accepted views. But whether they be accorded a greater or a less weight of influence, theological fidelity requires their frank and discriminating consideration, accepting what is true and resisting unsustained claims. In this way theology remains loyal to its fullest light, while conserving its firmly established truths. It is assuring to Christian faith in our much agitated age, that, while the modern progress in knowledge calls for some modification in the formal setting of some of these presuppositions or introductory truths, it has in fact verified and strengthened the essential foundations and principles of the Church's theology.