Menken, Gottfried, Dd
Menken, Gottfried, DD.
an eminent German Protestant divine, was born at Bremen May 29,1768. His early education was somewhat imperfect, from want of means, but in 1788 he entered the University of Jena, bringing with him only his Bible, a lexicon, and the works of Jacob Bohme. The rationalistic tendency which prevailed in the German universities at that time was thoroughly repugnant to his nature, and he determined to give himself to a close and quiet study of his Bible, and of those languages which could assist him in that object, leaving entirely aside the divers purely theological systems. He wrote at the time a number of essays and expositions, which, however, not being satisfied with them, he afterwards destroyed at Wetzlar, with the exception of some valuable pieces forming one volume of about 150 pages. In 1790 he went to the University of Duisburg, where he found the same general tendency prevailing as at Jena. He met, however, with some kindred spirits, such as Achelis (a judge at Duisburg in 1857) and Schlechtendal, earnest evangelical men, with whom he formed a friendship which lasted all his life. About 1791 he became an inmate in the family of the rector, Fr. A. Hasenkamp, whose example and precepts appear to have exerted a lasting influence over him. In 1794 he became assistant preacher at Frankfort-on- the-Main; in 1796, pastor of the Protestant Church at Wetzlar; removed in the same capacity to Bremen in 1802, and died there June 1, 1831. He was a great admirer of Bengel, and opposed not only Wolf and Baumgarten's views, but also those of such men as Lavater,Pfenninger, Hafeli, Stolz, Ewald, and Yung Stilling, whom he accused of conceding too much to the philosophical notions of the times. Among his numerous works we notice Beitrag z. Dimonologie, oder Widerlegung d. exegetischen Aufsdtze d. H. Prof. Grimm (Frankf. and Leips. 1793) :- Ueber Glick u. Sieg d. Gottlosen (Frankf. and Leips. 1795) — both of which were published anonymously:- Christliche Homilien (Nurenb. 1798):-Neue Sammlung (1802) :-Homilien u. d. Propheten Elias (1804):-Predigten (1825). After his death there appeared Letzte Sammlung christlicher Predigten (Cologne, 1847): —
Anleitung z. eigenen Unterricht in d. Wahrheiten d. Heiligen Schrift (Frankf. 1805; 2d edit. 1825):-—Leitfaden z. Unterricht f. Confirmanden (1817; - d edit. 1826). See Osiander-(J. E.), in the Tibinger Zeitschrift, 1832, vol. ii; also, separately, Menken als Schrift. steller (Bremen, 1832); Herzog, Real-Encyklopadie, 9:328 sq. (JN.P.)