The GOSPEL TRUTH
CHARLES G. FINNEY
To Charles Grandison Moore
18 April 1873
[Ms in Charles Grandison Moore Papers, C8, Box 1, Evangelical Library, 78a Chiltern Street, London W1U 5HB. The letter is in the handwriting of Rebecca Finney.]
Rev. Charles Grandison Moore (1851-1922) was the eldest son of Finney's English Methodist friend, Rev. John Moore. He had a distinguished career as an editor, author and holiness teacher.
Directly after his death in 1922, his son, Stanley J. Moore, brought out a little booklet: "Mr. Greatheart." Some Reminiscences of Charles G, Moore. By his Son (printed by Fir Grove, Woburn Sands, Beds.), in which he quoted from this letter (p. 2). This was followed by a more extensive biography, 'Heartily Yours'. The Life Story of Charles G. Moore. by his Son (Harrogate: Out & Out, 1922), in which he quoted from the letter at greater length (with minor alterations, pp. 10-11).
After C. G. Moore's death the letter passed into the possession of his daughter, Miss Daisy Moore, who donated it, with other papers, to the Evangelical Library.
Oberlin April 18th /73
Rev. C. G. Moore,
My Dear Son and Namesake
Yours of March 13th is rec'd. I hasten
to reply, in a few words. I am at present
troubled with weakness of eyesight, and therefore
write by the hand of another. I have known that
your father was a very close student, and have
feared for some time, that he would break
his nervous system entirely down. And
when he undertook to deal with the "oppositions
of science, falsely so called" in addition to his
ministerial itinerant labors, his break-down was
inevittable. But I am rejoiced to hear that
he is recovering. I send as much love to him
as can be transmitted in a letter, and pray
God to restore him quite to health. I hope
he will rest profoundly, for at least a year
without undertaking any intellectual labor.
A visit to this country, would in all prob-
ability greatly improve his health. Can he not
come to Oberlin? We should be very happy
to see him. Dr Jennings is still alive, and is
enjoying "a green old age." He has published
two books, since the first one, which you saw,
and is preparing a third. His first book,
however, gives the key to his system, and, I think,
is the most useful of the three. His views, are, I
think, influencing the action of physicians generally,
in this country. They give much less medicine
than formerly, and the most advanced thinkers
of that profession, are, I believe, many
of them, embracing more or less fully,
his views. Will not Mr. Tegg publish
a new edition of my "Guide to the Savior".
The title of that work, was not suggested
by me, and I never liked it. It should
have been entitled 'The Fullness of Jesus.'
I presume at the request of your father,
and perhaps a few other influential men
Mr. Tegg would publish a new edition.
Do you know whether he has suffered my
Systematic Theology to go out of print?
Are those views becoming more generally en-
tertained than they were, by the Wesleyan
body? I'm glad you love the ministry,
and if you know enough about medicine
to advise everybody to let it alone, you
will do great good in that direction,
as I trust I have done. Did you ever
read, what Sir Wm Hamilton has said
upon the subject of medicine? It is found
in Sir Wm Hamilton's Review of ^ John Thompson's
"Life Lectures and Writings of Wm Cullen
M.D." Edinburg Review of 1832. The pass-
age to which I refer is a foot note of much
significance, found in that article. Lest you
should not have it at hand, I will copy it.
"In Hoffman's dissertation on the "seven rules
of good health, the last, and most im-
portant of these is: "fly Doctors and Dr's
drugs, as you wish to be well." And
this precept, of that great physician
is inculcated by the most successful
practitioners (or non practitioners) of
ancient and of modern times.
Celsus well expresses it, "Optima medi-
cina est no uti Medicinae." And I have
heard a most eminent physician candidly
confess, "That the best practice, was that which
did nothing, the next best, that which did
little." In truth medicine, in the hands
by which it is vulgarly dispensed, is a curse,
rather than a blessing, and the most intel-
ligent authorities of the profession, from
Hippocrates downwards agree that their
science in its practice, at best, is a
nuisance, and "Send physic to the
dogs."" This is the testimony of Sir Wm Hamilton
who was one of the greatest physicians, and decidedly
the greatest metaphysician in Europe. I hope
your dear father will not give himself up
to the tinkering of physicians. I have for
many years acted upon the views of Dr Jennings
both in my own person and family, and
find their truthfulness confirmed at every
step. God Bless You forevermore,
C. G. Finney.
This letter is not in the Finney Papers. In "Heartily Yours" the date has been transcribed incorrectly as 18th.
This sentence, as well as some further sections in the letter, has been enclosed in parentheses in pencil, probably by Stanley J. Moore to indicate to the publisher not to include them in the extracts to be published.
John Moore had published "The Heresies of Science" in The London Quarterly Review, Vol. 36 (July 1871), pp. 266-309.
Isaac Jennings' first book was Medical Reform: a treatise on man's physical being and disorders, embracing an outline of a theory of human life, and a theory of disease--its nature, cause and remedy (Oberlin: Fitch & Jennings, 1847). He subsequently wrote The philosophy of human life; with especial design to develop the true idea of disease published in Cleveland, Ohio, by Jewett, Proctor & Worthington in 1852; and The Tree of Life, or, Human degeneracy, its nature and remedy as based on the elevating principle of orthopathy, published in New York by Miller, Wood & Co., in 1867.
This section on Jennings was enclosed in parentheses by Stanley Moore. Although most of the rest of the letter is not enclosed in parentheses, it was not included in the extracts in "Heartily Yours".
Published first by James M. Fitch of Oberlin in 1848, as Guide to the Savior; or, Conditions of attaining to and abiding in entire holiness of heart and life, it contained the section from Finney's Lectures on Systematic Theology (1847), pp. 245-312.
According to his son, Charles G. Moore "had contemplated a medical career, but the call of God came early to his soul. Renouncing personal ambitions, he followed his father into the Wesleyan ministry, after a theological course at Didsbury College." ("Heartily Yours", p. 14).
The two following sentences were placed in parentheses by Samuel Moore.
The review was published in the Edinburgh Review, Vol. 55 (July 1832), pp. 461-79. It is not signed; and how Finney knew that it was written by Sir William Hamilton is not known.
This quotation does not appear in the article to which Finney refers, and it is not known where it comes from.
The previous section up to this point was not enclosed in parentheses, but was not included in the published version.
Two months later, Finney received an "In Memoriam" card announcing the death of John Moore on June 5, 1873.