A standard systematic theology. One of the few by a southern presbyterian.
Discussions Buy 1890, compiled by Dabney’s friend, C.R. Vaughan, who wrote the 12 page biography of Dabney at the beginning of the volume. This is the unedited version. The Banner of Truth edition is heavily edited.
vol. 1 – Theological and Evangelical, 721 pages
vol. 2 – Evangelical and Theological, 690 pages
vol. 3 – Philosophical, 603 pages
vol. 4 – Secular, 692 pages
vol. 5 – Miscellaneous Writings, 619 pages
A Defence of Virginia: and Through, Her of the South, Buy 1867, 356 pages
The most thorough Biblical defense of slavery. Dabney also gives the history of the rise of the slave trade (which he condemns, Virginia being the first state to outlaw it on Biblical grounds), the legal origins of slavery in America, as well as the history of emancipation in the states.
A defense of the legal nature of the atonement based in justice for punishing sins, and Christ being a substitute for his people.
The Christian Sabbath: its Nature, Design and Proper Observance, 1882, 112 pages, here is an HTML version. This book is also in his Discussions, vol. 1, p. 496-550
A defense of Total Depravity, Unconditional Election, Limited Atonement, Irresistible Grace and Perseverance of the Saints
A classic biography of a Southern general of the Confederate States of America who was remarkable for his devout godliness, unswerving character and Calvinistic convictions. Stonewall said, “My religious belief teaches me to feel as safe in battle as in bed.”
Fiction, No Defence of Truth: or a Review of “Theodosia Ernest; or the Heroine of the Faith”, 1859, 166 pages, Theodosia Ernest was a current popular fictional novel among many where the main story revolved around the baptist convictions of the heroine. Here is Dabney’s review of it.
The Practical Philosophy: being the philosophy of the feelings, of the will, and of the consience, with the ascertainment of particular rights and duties, Buy 1897, 365 pages, unfortunately there is no table of contents, though there is an index at the beginning
This is Dabney’s systematic exposition of ethics.
Sacred Rhetoric: A Course of Lectures on Preaching, HTML Buy 1870, 361 pages
A classic textbook on preaching, specifically on how to prepare, build and deliver sermons.
The Sensualistic Philosophy of the Nineteenth Century Considered, Buy 1875, 369 pages
Here is Dabney’s major interaction with the popular philosophies (or “worldviews” in contemporary language) of his day. See here for a review.
Chapters from Books
(Every chapter of his Systematic Theology is indexed and online here)
God’s Indiscriminate Proposals of Mercy, as Related to His Power, Wisdom, and Sincerity, HTML, 1890, from his Discussions, vol. 1, p. 282, 30 pages
Against Musical Instruments in Public Worship, HTML, 1849/1888, includes a Review of Dr. John L. Girardeau’s Instrumental Music in Public Worship
Dabney was one of the last American presbyterian stalwarts that upheld the majority historic reformed view against using musical instruments in the worship of God, as instruments were minutely regulated by God’s express command in scripture and inherently tied to the OT temple administration which is now done away with.
The Attractions of Popery, HTML, 1894
The Changes Proposed in our Book of Discipline, HTML, 1859, 48 pages
Christ our Substitute, HTML, no date, 4 pages, published by the Presbyterian Committee of Publication, Richmond, VA.
Why do we worship on the first day of the week instead of the seventh? Because scripture requires it. Read this to learn more.
Lay Preaching, 1876, 19 pages
This is largely a critique of Dwight L. Moody’s advocation and arguments for lay-preaching with its attendant man-centered methods
The Public Preaching of Women, HTML, 1879, from the The Southern Presbyterian Review for October
The argument against women preaching
What is a Call to the Ministry? no date or source info
Are you called to the Ministry? Read this to find out.
What is Christian Union? HTML, from the Central Presbyterian, May 11 & 18, 1870
The principles upon which Christians churches should unite and remain separate.
Discourses and Speeches
For the other side of the argument, from a southern white pastor of black slaves, urging their capacity to rule as elders, see John L. Girardeau’s Our Ecclesiastical Relations to Freedmen, 1867. Girardeau’s position came to prevail and was enacted within a few years.
The New South: A Discourse, 1883, 28 pages
True Courage: a Discourse Commemorative of Lieut. General Thomas J. Jackson, Lk. 12:4,5, 1863, 36 pages, with a Sketch of the Life of Lieut. Gen. T.J. Jackson as an Appendix, 6 pages
Against loose subscription to the Westminster Standards.
A Critical Commentary on the Epistle to the Hebrews, Buy 1856, 509 pages, by Francis S. Sampson (1814-1854), edited by Robert Dabney, with a 10 page preface by Dabney. Sampson was a colleague professor at Union Theological Seminary in Virginia with Dabney. Dabney published this manuscript after Sampson’s death, greatly valuing its worth.
The standard biography of Robert Dabney, by his friend T.C. Johnson.
A Review of R.L. Dabney’s Sensualistic Philosophy, HTML, 2006, by Lauren S. Bottomly
Robert Lewis Dabney, 1820-1898, HTML, 1998, by Michael Kimmitt, a Banner of Truth article
Sketch of the Dabneys of Virginia: With Some of Their Family Records, Buy 1888, 197 pages, by William H. Dabney