Charles Hodge commenting on his (presumably) "muddled," "felicitously inconsistent," and "better-Christian-than-a-logician," brother in Satan:
"There is a theory far more pretentious and philosophical, and which of late years has widely prevailed, which in reality differs very little from the preceding. It agrees with it in the main point in that it denies anything supernatural in the origin or composition of the Bible. Schleiermacher, the author of this theory, was addicted to a philosophy which precluded all intervention of the immediate efficiency of God in the world. He admits, however, of two exceptions: the creation of man, and the constitution of the person of Christ. There was a supernatural intervention in the origin of our race, and in the manifestation of Christ. All else in the history of the world is natural. Of course there is nothing supernatural in the Bible; nothing in the Old Testament which the Adamic nature was not adequate to produce; and nothing in the New Testament, which Christianity, the life of the Church, a life common to all believers, is not sufficient to account for" (Charles Hodge, Systematic Theology, Volume 1, p. 173).
"When the body, which makes the distinction of persons among men, perishes, personality ceases with it. There is no conscious existence for man after death. Schleiermacher, in his 'Discourses,' says, the piety in which he was nurtured in his youth, 'remained with me when the God and immortality of my childhood disappeared from my doubting sight.' 3 On this avowal, Mr. Hunt, curate of St. Ives, Hunts, comments: 'The 'God and immortality' of his childhood disappeared. The personal God whom the Moravians worshipped was exchanged for the impersonal Divinity of philosophy. Nor did this theology seem impious. No, it was the very essence of true religion.' There is good reason to believe that with regard to the personal existence of the soul after death, Schleiermacher sacrificed his philosophy, as he certainly did in other points, to his religion. This, however, only the more clearly shows how inconsistent the pantheistic view of the nature of God is with the doctrine of conscious existence after death. The absorption of the soul in God, of the Finite into the Infinite, is the highest destiny that Pantheism can acknowledge for man" (Charles Hodge, Systematic Theology, Volume 1, p. 303).
3 Hunt’s Essay on Pantheism, London, 1866, p. 312.
"It is a great mercy that, at least in some cases, those whose philosophy forbids their believing in the personality of God, believe in the personality of Christ, whom they regard as a man invested with all the attributes of the Godhead, and whom they love and worship accordingly" (Charles Hodge, Systematic Theology, Volume 1, p. 439).
"In the Athanasian Creed (so-called), it is said that the Spirit is consubstantial with the Father and the Son; that He is uncreated, eternal, and omnipotent, equal in majesty and glory, and that He proceeds from the Father and the Son. These creeds are Catholic, adopted by the whole Church. Since they were framed there has been no diversity of faith on this subject among those recognized as Christians.
Those who, since the Council of Constantinople have denied the common Church doctrine, whether Socinians, Arians, or Sabellians, regard the Holy Spirit not as a creature, but as the power of God, i.e., the manifested divine efficiency. The modern philosophical theologians of Germany do not differ essentially from this view. De Wette, for example, says, that the Spirit is God as revealed and operative in nature; Schleiermacher says the term designates God as operative in the Church, i.e., 'der Gemeingeist der Kirche.' This, however, is only a name. God with Schleiermacher is only the unity of the causality manifested in the world. That causality viewed in Christ we may call Son, and viewed in the Church we may call the Spirit. God is merely cause, and man a fleeting effect. Happily Schleiermacher’s theology and Schleiermacher’s religion were as different as the speculations and the every day faith of the idealist" (Charles Hodge, Systematic Theology, Volume 1, pp. 533-534).
"The prevalent Christology among a numerous and distinguished class of modern theologians, though not professedly pantheistic, is nevertheless founded on the assumption of the essential oneness of God and man. This class includes the school of Schleiermacher in all its modifications not only in Germany, but also in England and America. Schleiermacher is regarded as the most interesting as well as the most influential theologian of modern times. He was not and could not be self-consistent, as he attempted the reconciliation of contradictory doctrines. There are three things in his antecedents and circumstances necessary to be considered, in order to any just appreciation of the man or of his system. First, he passed the early part of his life among the Moravians, and imbibed something of their spirit, and especially of their reverence for Christ, who to the Moravians is almost the exclusive object of worship. This reverence for Christ, Schleiermacher retained all his life. In one of the discourses pronounced on the occasion of his death, it was said, 'He gave up everything that he might save Christ.' His philosophy, his historical criticism, everything, he was willing to make bend to the great aim of preserving to himself that cherished object of reverence and love" 1 (Charles Hodge, Systematic Theology, Volume 2, p. 440).
1 When in Berlin the writer often attended Schleiermacher’s church. The hymns to be sung were printed on slips of paper and distributed at the doors. They were always evangelical and spiritual in an eminent degree, filled with praise and gratitude to our Redeemer. Tholuck said that Schleiermacher, when sitting in the evening with his family, would often say, 'Hush, children: let us sing a hymn of praise to Christ.' Can we doubt that he is singing those praises now? To whomsoever Christ is God, St. John assures us Christ is a Savior.
"Gladly as Schleiermacher’s theory was embraced as a refuge by those who had been constrained to give up Christianity as a doctrine, and great as have been its popularity and influence, it was assailed from very different quarters and judged from many different standpoints. Here it can only be viewed from the position of Christian theology. It should be remembered that as the idealist does not feel and act according to his theory, so the inward life of a theologian may not be determined by his speculative doctrines. This does not render error less objectionable or less dangerous. It is nevertheless a fact, and enables us to condemn a system without wounding our charity for its author. Schleiermacher, however, was an exceptional case. As a general rule, a man’s faith is the expression of his inward life.
1. The first objection to Schleiermacher’s theory is that it is not and does not pretend to be Biblical. It is not founded upon the objective teachings of the Word of God. It assumes, indeed, that the religious experience of the Apostles and early Christians was substantially the same, and therefore involved the same truths, as the experience of Christians of the present day. Schleiermacher even admits that their experience was so pure and distinctly marked as to have the authority of a standard by which other believers are to judge of their own. But he denies that the interpretation which they gave of their experience has normal authority for us, that is, he says that we are not bound to believe what the Apostles believed. His appeals to the Scriptures in support of his peculiar doctrines are extremely rare, and merely incidental. He professes to build up a system independent of the Bible, founded on what Christians now find in the contents of their own consciousness" (Charles Hodge, Systematic Theology, Volume 2, pp. 442-443).
"4. Schleiermacher’s system ignores the doctrine of the Trinity. With him God in the world, is the Father; God in Christ, the Son; God in the Church, the Spirit. All personal preëxistence of Christ is thus necessarily excluded. The Scriptures and the Church teach that the eternal Son of God, who was with the Father from eternity; who made the worlds; who could say, 'Before Abraham was I am,' became man, being born of a woman, yet without sin. This Schleiermacher denies. There was no Son of God, before the birth of Christ in Bethlehem. Then only, Christ began to be as a distinct person; He had no preëxistence beyond that which is common to all men.
5. This system makes Christ a mere man. He is constantly represented as the Ideal man, Urbild, a perfect man. In Him the idea of humanity is said to be fully realized. His life is said to be one; and that one a true human life. There was in Him but one nature, and that nature human. Now it matters little that with these representations Christ is said to be divine, and his life a divine life; for this is said on the ground that the divine is human, and the human divine. God and man are one. The difference between Christ and other men is simply one of degree. He is perfect, we are imperfect" (Charles Hodge, Systematic Theology, Volume 2, p. 445-446).
To requote one major pretext that Charles Hodge gave in excusing his spiritual fornication with a blatantly obvious, God-hater:
in Berlin the writer often attended Schleiermacher’s church. The hymns
to be sung were printed on slips of paper and distributed at the doors.
They were always evangelical and spiritual in an eminent degree, filled
with praise and gratitude to our Redeemer. Tholuck said that
Schleiermacher, when sitting in the evening with his family, would often
say, 'Hush, children: let us sing a hymn of praise to Christ.' Can we doubt that he is singing those praises now? To whomsoever Christ is God, St. John assures us Christ is a Savior" (Charles Hodge, Systematic Theology, Volume 2, p. 440).
The warnings in the Old Testament against committing spiritual fornication are pervasive. In Ezekiel 13:9-16 God not only destroyed the wall, He also destroyed those who plastered the wall. In Jeremiah 14:11-16 the false prophets and those to whom they spoke peace were consumed in judgment. This inextricable link that is established in the Old Testament is reaffirmed in the New Testament: If you share in her sins, you WILL receive of her plagues (Revelation 18:4; cf. 2 John 9-11). The immediate & inevitable result of God’s regenerating His people is NOT to dally with, but to come out of the Great Harlot. And since they come out of her by true faith & repentance (http://www.outsidethecamp.org/gosprep.htm) they do NOT speak false visions of peace to themselves back upon their former times of ignorance (cf. Romans 10:2-3; Philippians 3:8). The Schleiermacherian Wall is not; and, the Hodgian Dauber is not (Ezekiel 13:15).
Note: The Genuine Historical Calvinism Website Introduction states the following:
"The heresies that Genuine Historical Calvinists believed/believe and taught/teach include the following ... The efficacious atonement of Jesus Christ is not an essential gospel doctrine (i.e., not all believers believe in the efficacious atonement of Jesus Christ, and if one does not believe in the efficacious atonement of Jesus Christ, he is not necessarily unregenerate)."
Thus, the reason for posting Charles Hodge's spiritual fornication with a blatant God-hater such as Schleiermacher is to show that apparently Hodge did NOT consider any fundamental doctrine to be essential to the Christian faith, let alone the fundamental HEART of the gospel, which is the efficacious atonement of Jesus Christ.