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tures, we have errors of the same kind. Esdras, for example, in rehearsing the six days' work of creation, says that on the third day, when the dry land was separated from the waters, it occupied six-sevenths of the earth, the sea only covering oneseventh, which is altogether at variance with facts. He tells us, too, that when God created Behemoth and Leviathan-he could only find room in the sea for the last of them, and consequently gave Behemoth the range of a thousand hills on shore.
These fables show pretty clearly what the Bible would have been, had the Jews invented it on their return from the captivity, as alleged by Paine and other sceptics. The inference is obvious. If it were not a reflex of the popular errors of the day, whence came that exact knowledge which soars so far above them, and narrates facts as they really are--not as they were then supposed to be ?
Besides the direct and special references to astronomical facts contained in the Bible, the entire tone and tenor of its language when treating on analogous subjects, is of so enlightened and lofty a character, that we cannot for one moment refer it to any mere mortal ; and especially to one living at a period when nothing whatever was known of the true theory of the heavens or the earth. It can be proved that the sublime language of Isaiah in his fortieth chapter is no less remarkable for its literal accuracy, than for its unparalleled sublimity--that the waters of our earth have been actually measured out with re. ference to the well-being of its inhabitants—that the heavens have been as strictly meted out, and that the mountains and hills have been so weighed, as to adjust the earth's density to the requirements even of the tiniest flower upon its surface, as is beautifully illustrated by Professor Whewell in his Bridgewater Treatise.
Amongst the charges brought forward by the deist against Revelation, none has been more determinately thrust home than the statement that the Bible unfolds most unworthy views of the extent and majesty of the visible creation--that it pre-> supposes man and the world he lives in, to be all-important in the scale of the universe.
But it can by no means be admitted that the Bible exaggerates the relative position or importance of our race with
reference to the visible universe, or that it narrows the limits of that universe in accommodation to the vanity or littleness of man. No astronomer of our own day could entertain a more worthy, elevated, or enlightened view of the vast system of creation than the prophet Isaiah expresses in the chapter already quoted. We know, too, that in David's time nothing was popularly ascertained regarding the distances, magnitude, or general character of the stars, and without this knowledge what did they possess to rank them with the chief of God's great handiworks. But the Bible does so rank them—therefore the Bible, in this instance at least, must have been cognizant of certain facts in astronomy, of which the whole world was utterly ignorant, and which many even in the present day have yet to learn.
On no subject of human learning do we trace the majesty and wisdom of a Divine hand more conspicuously than in the department of natural history, especially in the sublime description given by Job of the war horse, the wild ass, the ostrich, the eagle, the reem, behemoth and leviathan. But on this subject we cannot now enlarge.
The geological references of the Bible possess the same enlightened and anticipative character as those which relate to astronomy, especially Psalm civ. and Job xiv. xxvii. and Xxxviii. which all discover traces of omniscience in the lucid and graphic narrations there given of the antagonistic agencies of fire and water in deranging, re-arranging, and modifying the crust of our earth-agencies, be it remembered, which form the basis of all geological theories in the present day.
Analogous to this science is the system by which the important element of water in its influence and effects, is regulated. Ths whole theory of meteorology is beautifully adumbrated in the Bible. The evaporation, the condensation, the precipitation, in rain and dew, and all the various processes and changes connected with water are scientifically set forth in Scripture, especially in Genesis i. 6—10, Psalm xxxii. 7, and Eccles. i. 7.
We might multiply our references to matters' of this nature manifold. With one remarkable illustration we shall close.
No one we think can read the twelfth chapter of Ecclesiastes without discovering that it involves a knowledge of anatomy
and physiology, the most important feature of which was reproduced as an original discovery in this country but two or three centuries ago. When Harvey demonstrated the circulation of the blood, did he know that the whole economy of the venous and arterial system had been so boldly shadowed forth by Solomon in describing the decay of nature and the creeping on of old age ?
“ Or ever the silver cord be loosed, or the golden bowl be broken,
“ Or the pitcher be broken at the fountain-or the wheel broken at the cistern;
66 Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was : * And the spirit shall return to God who gave it.”.
We have thus attempted to show that in matters purely scientific the Bible is in advance of the age-so true is the experience of the psalmist_“I understand more than the ancients, because I keep thy precepts." Our illustrations, perhaps, may not have been felicitously chosen; but the fundamental principle is certainly a right one-that the same consummate wisdom which dictated the historical prophecies of the Bible, is conspicuous in its references to matters more especially scientific and philosophical. The age in which we live, eminently demands the investigation here attempted. If we have failed, let others step forth into the same field, and sooner or later they will establish the proposition--That the Philosophical and Scientific statements of the Bible afford convincing proof of its Divine origin. 14.10.08 11 4933-15h
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HAPPINESS. " I WISH this month to say a few words upon Happiness, a subject upon which people generally form more incorrect ideas than on any other, as is evidenced by their actions. Hence the numerous disappointments which we ourselves and our friends so often meet with; for what is disappointment, but the loss of some pleasure or happiness upon which we may have set our minds?
It is to prevent this, and from our liability to make mistakes in our ideas of happiness, that we find so many cautions in the sacred writings against building our hopes upon delusive objects-cautions which we should thankfully use as guideposts, mercifully set up by those who knew from experience the difficulties of the way. “Love not the world;" “Be not conformed to this world;" “To be carnally minded is death, might at first sight lead us to question the truth of the confession of the wise man, after taking a survey of his past life. “All is vanity and vexation of spirit.” The fact is, however, that both the cautions and the confessions have one and the same origin, Experience. Both John and Paul were anxious that men should not spend their time in the pursuit of transient pleasures, which, they, as well as Solomon, had lived long enough to know could only end in "vexation of spirit.” Oh! that we were wise enough to profit from the experience of others, instead of foolishly purchasing wisdom at so dear a price as our own.
I shall not now dwell upon the various objects which different people aim at, thinking that happiness is to be found, if not in them, with them, and by them. Suffice it to say, that the minds of men are so far uniformly constituted, that their tastes are not so different, but that true happiness is calculated to satisfy them all. The truth of this is at once apparent if we consider, that otherwise heaven must be a place, not of harmony but discord. For there our tastes will not be altered, but purified and developed. It follows therefore, that men must have tastes in common, which will ultimately lead them to take pleasure in the same pursuits.
I will now endeavor to show in what True Happiness consists, warning, by the way, any who may be disposed to imagine the course I shall point out, of a melancholy rather than a pleasant character; that any other will sooner or later compel them too to look back upon life, and acknowledge that "All is vanity and vexation of spirit.” Happiness is the prime flower of our existence, either in this or a future state; that, which in this life all men seek, though few attain. It is an exotic, and as such must be treated. Now, everybody knows, that if we would have a foreign plant live and flourish in our gardens at home, the only chance of success, is to procure as much as possible of its native soil, and to place it in a position
as regards heat and shade, and other external circumstances, corresponding as nearly as possible with that from which we removed it. Though, even then, with all our care we may not expect that it will reach the same degree of perfection, as in its own country. There is a strict analogy between the proper treatment of such a plant, and the method we must adopt, in order to obtain happiness. Heaven is its native climate, and there alone is it enjoyed to perfection. Let us now observe in what the happiness of heaven consists, and learn from thence how to pursue it, at least, with partial success, even in this world.
The blessed in heaven are happy, because they are in the immediate presence of God; “In thy presence is fulness of joy,”—because they are in the society of just men made perfect; “Many shall come from the east and from the west, and shall sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven;" and because they have all those inconveniences and imperfections removed, from which in this world they suffered, through the frailty of our mortal nature. “They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more, neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat.” “Neither can they die any more, for they are equal unto the angels.” Again, their tastes being purified, they delight in glorifying God and praising him for their redemption, which they look back upon with feelings of grateful rapture. “I beheld, and lo! a great multitude which no man could number, of all nations and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands; and cried with a loud voice, “Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and to the Lamb, for He was slain, and has redeemed us to God by his blood!"
If, then, we would enjoy happiness on earth, we must always imagine ourselves in the presence of God, and act accordingly. “Thou God seest me.” “The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.” Our society must consist of persons whom we believe to fear and honor God. “Whosoever will do the will of God, the same is my brother, and sister, and mother.” “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” We must be continually striving to subdue