Primary Sources for the Presbyterian Masses

A Very Insightful Comment from A.A. Hodge (1877)

In Archibald Alexander Hodge on 30/06/2009 at 23:05

“From the Reformation, for two hundred years, these principles stood in antagonism to absolutism of hierarchy in the Church, and of personal government in the State.  In modern times the conditions are materially changed, and a triangular contest has been inaugurated between Presbyterian principles of human equality subject to divine sovereignty, and of liberty under the supremacy of the written Word, at the apex, and the ancient foe of absolutism and the modern foe of license at the opposite angles. . .”

“. . .But the pre-eminent characteristic of modern times is the tendency in various degrees among all peoples of European descent to carry the reaction against authority inaugurated at the Reformation to the destructive extreme of license.  The insurrection of reason against traditional superstitions and the usurped authority of the hierarchy, has been succeeded by the illegitimate insurrection of reason against all supernatural revelation and spiritual illumination.  Rebellion against absolutism in civil government has been perverted by anarchical and anti-social principles, and been succeeded by the assertion of independence [from] the authority of God.”

[excerpted from “Adaptation of Presbyterianism to the Wants and Tendencies of the Day,” by A.A. Hodge, in Report of the Proceedings of the First General Presbyterian Council, Convened at Edinburgh, July 1877.  Edinburgh: Thomas and Archibald Constable, 1877.  Page 58.]

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