The Theology Of Dr. Gill -- By: Daniel T. Fiske

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 014:54 (Apr 1857)
Article: The Theology Of Dr. Gill
Author: Daniel T. Fiske


The Theology Of Dr. Gill

Rev. Daniel T. Fiske

One of the most noticeable and hopeful features in the present condition of the theological world, is a revived and increasing interest in the department of ecclesiastical history. This interest has been gradually manifesting itself,

not only among the’ speculative minds of Germany, but also among the more practical thinking men in England and America. And what especially renders this awakened interest an omen of good, is the fact, that it has been directed, not chiefly to the external affairs of the church, but to the doctrines as they are found embodied in creeds and symbols, and the elaborated systems of eminent theologians. Familiarity with dogmatic history cannot fail to advance the truth, promote comprehensiveness of faith, allay the bitterness of sectarian feeling, and in many ways contribute to the unity of “the body of Christ.”

That is not, then, a useless nor unimportant service which presents to the student of theology a faithful epitome of the doctrinal views of eminent divines of other days. This service the present Article proposes to render in regard to one who has been thought worthy by many to stand in the line of immediate succession to the most distinguished English theologians of the seventeenth century.

John Gill (D. D.) was born on the 23d of Nov. (O. S.) 1697, at Kettering in Northamptonshire, England. In very early life he was a subject of deep religious impressions; and, at the age of twelve years, gave evidence of true conversion; although it was several years later when he publicly professed his faith in Christ by uniting with the Baptist church; of which his parents were members and his father a deacon. To the peculiar tenets of that church, on the subject of baptism, he was strongly attached, and was a ready and zealous champion of the same. While yet young, he entered the ministry, and, in 1719, was called to the charge of a church at Horsely Down, Southwark, near London. Here he passed the remainder of his days, in “labors abundant,” and died in 1771, in his seventy-fourth year. His published works are voluminous, and bear honorable testimony to his industry, ability, scholarship, and piety. Besides numerous controversial pamphlets and tracts, he edited the works of Dr. Crisp, accompanying them with notes and a memoir; published a work entitled “Cause of God and Truth,” in four large octavo volumes; a Commen-

tary on the entire Scriptures, in seven folio volumes; a Body of Doctrinal Divinity, in two quarto volumes; and a Body of Practical Divinity, also in two quarto volumes. The substance of his princip...

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