Monday, February 05, 2007

Monday Quote : Thomas Chalmers - Catechisms and Confessions

"I look on Catechisms and Confessions as mere landmarks against heresy. If there had been no heresy, they wouldn't have been wanted. It's putting them out of their place to look on them as magazines of truth. There's some ouf your stour orthodox folk just over ready to stretch the Bible to square with their catechism: all very well, all very needful as a landmark, but what I say is, do not let that wretched. mutilated thing be thrown between me and the Bible!"

Quoted in William Hanna, 'Memoirs of Thomas Chalmers' (Edinburgh, Thomas Constable, 1854) Vol. 2 P. 729

(Note for scholars. This is the two-volume popular edition, not the four-volume edition)


Blogger Jenson's Blog said...

Funny to be reading this - esp. since I just finished "100 years of witness " - the history of the Free Pres COS. I wondered what they would have said about that quote!

Thanks for the quote anyway.

9:35 am  
Blogger Highland Host said...

According to the current state of my research on Chalmers there are a number of points where the Free Presbyterians and Chalmers would have had significant differences!

Chalmers' real views on some points of theology have been quietly brushed under the carpet for too long. They will be exposed, God willing, in April in Attleborough.

12:50 pm  
Blogger Jenson's Blog said...

Really? What is happening at Attleborough?

I am reading the Free Pres (COS) Magazine Vol 1 1896, and I see even Alexander Whyte also came under the wrath of the Free Pres!

Was the split inevitable? No, however if it wasn't for the machinery of Presbyterianism - they could easily "purgue out the leaven".

1:08 pm  
Blogger Hiraeth said...

Our senior blogger is delivering a paper on Thomas Chalmers. I wish I could be there, but Cardiff is a long way from Attleborough, and I am a busy man, with applications for funding, etc.

9:27 pm  
Blogger Rhett said...

Catechisms and Confessions sure have fallen on hard time on this side of the pond... I think it's sad too!


10:16 am  
Blogger Rhett said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

10:17 am  
Blogger Hiraeth said...

For 'applications for funding' read 'begging letters.'

I go to Swansea tomorrow to plead my case (and I do mean plead!).

6:05 pm  
Blogger Highland Host said...

The landmarks ought not to be removed, but they are just that, landmarks. I think the majority of modern Evangelicalism is guilty of the oppoite error to that which Chalmers is criticising, that of undervaluing confessions. They are, after all, "all very needful as a landmark."

12:54 pm  

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