belonging to the Church of England. Hooker identified the church with the nation. See Ecclesiastical Polity, book viii, chap. 1:7; 4:6; 8:9. He held that the state has committed itself to the church and that therefore, the church has no right to commit itself to the state. The assumption, however, that the state has committed itself to the church is entirely unwarranted. See Gore, Incarnation, 209, 210. Hooker declares that, even if the Episcopalian order were laid down in Scripture, which he denies, it would still not be unalterable. Since neither ?God?s being the author of laws for the government of his church nor his committing them unto Scripture, is any reason sufficient wherefore all churches should forever be bound to keep them without change.?
T. M. Lindsay, in Contemp. Rev., Oct 1895:548-563, asserts that there were at least five different forms of church government in apostolic times. They were derived from the seven wise men of the Hebrew village community, representing the political side of the synagogue system. Some were derived from the ejpisko>pov , the director of the religious or social club among the heathen Greeks, from the patronate prosta>thv proista>menov known among the Romans, the churches of Rome, Corinth, Thessalonica, being of this sort. Others were derived from the personal prominence of one man, nearest in family to our Lord. James, being president of the church at Jerusalem and from temporary superintendents ( hJgou>menoi , or leaders of the band of missionaries, as in Crete and Ephesus. Between all these churches of different polities, there was intercommunication and fellowship. Lindsay holds that the unity was wholly spiritual. It seems to us that he has succeeded merely in proving five different varieties into one generic type (the generic type being only democratic, with two orders of officials, and two ordinances.) In other words, in showing that the simple N. T. model adopts itself to many changing conditions, while the main outlines do not change. Upon any other theory church polity is a matter of individual taste or of temporary fashion. Shall church order be conformed by missionaries to the degraded ideas of the nations among which they labor? Shall church government be despotic in Turkey, a limited monarchy in England, a democracy in the United States of America and two-headed in Japan? For the development theory of Neander, see his Church History, 1:179-190. On the general subject, see Hitchcock, in Am. Theol. Rev., 1860:28-54; Davidson, Ecclesiastical Polity, 1-12; Harvey, The Church.
2. The nature of this organization.
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