But a special measure of value always attaches to forms. By being the means by which the community is kept together, the value of that to which they minister is insensibly transferred to them; or, at least, there is always a danger of this happening. One reason for this is that the observance of the forms can always be controlled or enforced, as the case may be; whilst for the inner life there is no control that cannot be evaded.
When the breach with the Jewish national communion had once taken place, there could be no doubt about the necessity for setting up a new community in opposition to it. The self- consciousness and strength of the Christian movement was displayed in the creation of a Church which knew itself to be the true Israel. But the founding of churches and “the Church” on earth brought an entirely new interest into the field; what came from within was joined by something that came from without; law, discipline, regulations for ritual and doctrine, were developed, and began to assert a position by a logic of their own The measure of value applicable to religion itself no longer remained the only measure, and with a hundred invisible threads religion was insensibly worked into the net of history.
In the second place: we have already referred to the fact that it was above all in his Christology that Paul’s significance as a teacher consisted. In his view—we see this as well by the way in which he illuminated the death on the cross and the resurrection, as by his equation, “the Lord is a Spirit”—the Redemption is already accomplished and salvation a present power. “God hath reconciled us to himself through Jesus Christ”; “If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature”; “Who shall separate us from the love of God?”