is to give a scientific answer to the question. Why Ehoiild I be a Catholic? Now this question involves two others which are also fundamental. The one is: Why should I be a Christian rather than an adherent of the Jewish religion, or the Mohammedan, or the Zoroastrian, or of some other religious system setting up a rival claim to be revealed? The other, still more fundamental, question is: Why should I pro- fess any religion at all? Thus the science of apolo- getics easily falls into three great divisions: First, the study of religion in general and the gromids of the- istic belief; second, the study of revealed religion and the grounds of Christian belief; third, the study of the true Church of Christ and the grounds of Catholic Ijelief.
In the first of these divisions, the apologist inquires into the nature of religion, its universality, and man's natural capacity to acquire religious ideas. In con- nection with this the modern study of the religious philosophy of uncultured i>eoples has to 1k' taken mto consideration, and the various theories concern- ing the origin of religion present them.selvcs for crit- ical discussion. This leads to the examination of the grounds of theistic belief, including the important Questions of (1) the existence of a divine Personality, tne Creator and Conserver of the world, exercising a special providence over man; (2) man's freedom of will and his corresponding religious and moral responsibility in virtue of his dependence on C!od; (3) the innnortality of the human soul, and the future life with its attendant rewards and punishments. (>)upled with these questions is the refutation of monism, determinism, and other anti-theistic theo- ries. Religious philosophy and apologetics here march hand in hand.
The second division, on revealed religion, is even more comprehensive. After treating the notion, possibility, and moral necessity of a divine revela- tion, and its discemibility through various internal and external criteria, the apologist proceeds to es- tablish the fact of revelation. Three distinct, pro- gressive stages of revelation are set forth: Primitive Revelation, Mosaic Revelation, and Christian Reve- lation. The chief sources on which he has to rely in establishing this triple fact of revelation are the Sacred Scriptures. But if ho is logical, he must pre- scind from their inspiration and treat them provi- sionally as human historical documents. Here he must depend on the critical study of the OKI and New Testaments by impartial scriptural scholars, and build on the accredited results of their researches touching the authenticity and trustworthiness of the sjicred books purporting to be historical. It is only by anticipation that an argument for the fact of primitive revelation can be based on the ground that It is taught in the inspired book of Genesis, and that it is implied in the supernatural state of our first parents. In the absence of anything like contem- porarj' documents, the apologist has to lay chief stress on the high antecedent probability of primi- tive revelation, and show how a revelation of limited, but sufficient .scope for primitive man is compatible with a very crude stage of material and a>sthetic culture, and hence is not discredited by the sound results of prehistoric archa-ologj'. Closely connected with this question is the scientific study of the origin and antiquity of man, and the unity of the human species; and, as still larger subjects bearing on the historic value of the sacred Rook of Origins, the com- patibility wHth Scripture of the modern sciences of biologj", astronomy, and geologj'. In like manner the apologist has to content himself with showing the fact of Mosaic revelation to be highly probable. The difficulty, in the present condition of Old Testa- ment criticism, of recognizing more than a small portion of the Pentateuch as documentarj' evidence contemporary with Moses, makes it incumbent on
the apologist to proceed with caution lest, in attempt- ing to prove too much, he may bring into discredit what is decidedly tenable apart from dogmatic con- siderations. However, there is sufficient evidence allowed by all but the most radical critics to cslali- lish the fact that Mo.scs was the providential instru- ment for delivering the Hebrew [jeople from Egyptian bondage, and for teaching them a system of religious legislation that in lofty monotheism and ethical worth is far superior to the beliefs and customs of the sur- rounding nations, thus affording a strong presumi>- tion in favour of its claim to Ije revealed. This pre- sumption gains strength and clearness in the liglit of Messiani<' propliccy, which shines with ever increas- ing viihiMie ami brightness through the historj' of the Jewisli religion till it illumines the personality of our Divine Lord. In this study of Mosaic revela- tion, biblical archieology is of no small service to the apologist.
When the apologist comes to the subject of Chris- tian revelation, he finds him.self on much firmer ground. Starting with the generally recognized re- sults of New Testament criticism, he is enabled to show that the synoptic (lospels, on the one hand, and the vmdisputed Kpistles of St. Paul, on the other, offer two independent, yet mutually corroborative, masses of evidence concerning the person and work of Jesus. As this evidence endjodics the unimpeach- able testimony of thoroughly reliable eye-witnesses and their associates, it presents a portraiture of Jesus that is truly historical. After showing from the records that Jesus taught, now implicitly, now ex- plicitly, that he w;is the long expected Messiah, the Son of God sent by His Heavenly Father to enlighten and save mankind, and to found the new kingdom of justice. Apologetics proceeds to set forth the grounds for believing in these claims: (1) the sur-
Fassing beauty of His moral character, stamping lim as the unique, perfect man; (2) the lofty ex- cellence of his moral and religious teaching, which has no parallel elsewhere, and which answers the highest aspirations of the human soul; (3) His mir- acles wrought during His public mission; (4) the transcendent miracle of His resurrection, which He foretold as well; (5) the wonderful regeneration of society through His undying personal influence. Then, by way of supplementary proof, the apologist institutes an impartial comparison of Christianity with the various rival religious systems of the world — Brahminism, Buddhism, Zoroastrianism, Confu- cianism, Taoism, Mohanmiedanism — and shows how in the person of its founder, in its moral and religious ideal and influence, the Christian religion is immeas- urably superior to all others, and alone hiis a claim to our a.ssent as the absolute, divinely-revealed re- ligion. Here, too, in the sur\-ey of Buddhism, the specious objection, not unconunon to-day, that Bud- dliist idcjis and legends have contributed to the formation of the Gospels, calls for a summarj' refu- tation.
Beyond the fact of Cliristian revelation the Prot- estant apologist does not proceed. But the Catholic rightly msists that the scope of apologetics should not end here. Both the New Testament records and tho.se of the sub-Apostolic age bear witness that Christianity was meant to Ix; something more than a religious philosophy of life, more than a mere sys- tem of individual belief and practice, and that it cannot be separated historically from a concrete form of social organization. Hence Catholic a|K)lo- getics ad<ls. as a necessary sequel to the established fact of Christian revelation, the demonstration of the true Church of Christ and its identity with the Ro- man Catholic Church. From the records of the .\postlcs and their immediate successors is set forth the institution of the Church as a tnie, une<iual so- ciety, endowed with the supreme authority of its