FABLES OF INFIDELITY
FACTS OF FAITH:
BEING AN EXAMINATION OF THE EVIDENCES OF INFIDELITY.
REV. ROBERT PATTERSON, D. D.
REVISED AND ENLARGED.
CINCINNATI: WESTERN TRACT SOCIETY.
Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1875, by
WESTERN TRACT SOCIETY,
In the Office of the Librarian of Congress, Washington, D. C.
Stereotyped by OGDEN, CAMPBELL & CO., 176 Elm St., Cincinnati.
CHAPTER I. PAGE. Did the World Make Itself? 7
Eternity of Matter. Disproved by its Composite Nature. Disproved by its Motion. Evolution only a big Perpetual Motion Humbug. Work of a Designer in the structure of the Eye. The Eye-Maker sees over a wide Field and far. The Eye-Maker sees Perfectly.
Was Your Mother a Monkey? 34
The Divine Fact of Evolution Quite Different from the Atheistic Theory. State the Question Sharply—Why? Darwin's Answer. The Ancestral Monkey, Fish, Squirt. Natural Selection. Intended to Exclude God.
1. The History of the Theory.
Indian; Phoenician; Greek; Popish; La Place's Theory; The Vestiges of Creation. Herbert Spencer's Contradictory Theory. The Evolutionists' Hell. Spontaneous Generation—two Theories; the Conflicting Theories of Progress; Tremaux; Lamarck; the Climatal; Darwin's; Huxley's; Parson's; Mivart's; Hyatt's; Cope's; Wallace's; the Gods; Denounced by the Princes of Science. Agassiz's Deliverance Against it. Imperfection of the Theory Eked out. Huxley's Protoplasm. Tyndall's Potency of Life in Matter. Buchner's Matter and Force. Lubbock's Origin of Civilization. Consequences of the Brutal Origin of Man. Propagandism of Atheism.
2. The Theory Illogical and Incoherent.
Darwin Admits Insufficiency of Proof. Useless as an Explanation of Nature. Self-Contradictory; e. g., Protoplasm. Wallace's Self-Contradictions. Incoherency of the Denial of Design with the Assertion of Progress. Failure of Alleged Facts to Sustain the Theory. Does not Account for the Origin of Anything. Wild Assumptions Made by Darwin. Erroneous Assumption of the Tendency of Natural Selection to Improve Breeds. Assumption of Infinite Possibility of Progress in Finite Creatures.
3. An Unfounded Theory.
No Evidence of the Facts Possible. None Ever Alleged, save Gulliver's. Domestication Disproves Transmutation—Horses; Pigeons; Dogs. The Egyptian Monuments. The Mummied Animals. The Geological Record. The Limits of Geological Time.
Testimony of Scientists: 1. Embryology Only Analogical. 2. Embryos not all Alike. 3. Four Distinct Plans of Structure. 4. Germs Always True to the Breed.
5. Gradations of Species.
Lamarck's Statement. Birth Descent not Inferable from Gradation. No such Imperceptible Blending in Nature. The Fact of the Present Existence of Distinct Species. Sterility of Hybrids. Geological Species Distinct. The Intermediate Forms not Found. The Gradation Does not Begin with the Lowest Forms. Four Kingdoms from the Beginning. The New Species Began with the Giants. The Gaps Fatal to the Theory. The Abyss Between Death and Life. The Gulf Between the Plant and the Animal. The Gaps Between Species Which will not Breed Together. The Gaps Between Air Breathers and Water Breathers, &c. The Great Gulf Between the Brute and the Man. Natural Selection Could not Have Deprived a Monkey of Hair. Nor Have Given a Human Brain. The Brain-Worker Contravenes Natural Selection at Every Step. Civilization the Contradiction of Natural Selection. Morality and Religion the Direct Contraries of Natural Selection. Tendency Immoral, Degrading, and Atheistic.
Is God Everybody, and Everybody God? 91
Pantheism Described. An Antiquated Hindooism. A Jesuitical Atheism. Grossly Immoral. A Practical Atheism.
Have We Any Need of the Bible? 112
Civilization and the Bible. Revelation Not Impossible. The Mythical Theory. The Inner Light. Many Ignorant of God. Heathen Morality—Plato's. Infidel Morality—Paine's.
Who Wrote the New Testament? 147
The Bible Not Just Like Any Other Book. Two Modes of Investigation. Did the Council of Nice Make the Bible? The Mythical Theory. The Evidence of Celsus. The Fragment Hypothesis. The Bank Signature Book. Could the New Testament be Corrupted?
Is the Gospel Fact or Fable? 169
The Nature of Historical Evidence; Letters; Monuments. Contemporary Letters of Peter, Pliny and John. Prove the Existence of Churches. And Their Worship, Holiness, and Sufferings.
Can We Believe Christ and His Apostles? 190
The Gospel a Unit; Must Take or Refuse it All. Apostles' Testimony Circumstantial. Witnesses Numerous and Independent. Confirm Their Testimony with Their Blood.
Political—Napoleon's—Wrong. Presidential Candidates. Draper's Dogma of Youth and Decrepitude of Nations. Statesmen Prophets. General Claim for All Genius. Instances of Secular Prediction: Cayotte's of the French Revolution. The Oracles of Apollo. Vettius Valens' Twelve Vultures. Spencer's of the Disruption of the American Union. Saint Malachi's Prophecies. Mohammed's Prophecies. Seneca's of the Discovery of America. Dante's of the Reformation. Plato's of Shakespeare. Symbolical Language of Prophecy. Anybody may Predict Downfall of Nations. An Awful Truth if it be True. But Bible Predictions Circumstantial—Egypt; Babylon; Nineveh; Judea. Predict Life and Resurrection. The Arabs; Jews; Seven Churches; Messiah.
Moses and the Prophets, 266
God the Author of the Bible. Every Other Book Inspired? Connection of Bible History and Morality. Hume's Sophism. Miracles Being Violations of Laws of Nature, Contrary to an Unalterable Experience. No Testimony can Reach to the Supernatural. Records of Facts Not Judged by Your Notions. Rationalistic Explanation of the Miracles. Bible Account of Creation Unscientific. Antiquity of Man. The Anachronisms of the Pentateuch. Bishop Colenso's Blunders: The Universality of the Deluge. Joshua Causing the Sun to Stand Still. Cain's Wife. Increase of Jacob's Family in Egypt. The Number of the First-Born. The Fourth Generation. The Bishop's Blunders in Camp Life. Sterility of the Wilderness. Population of the Promised Land. Modern Discoveries in Bible Lands. Egyptian Monuments of Joseph. Assyrian Ethnology and Genesis, Chaps. x. and xi. Sennacherib's Conquest of Palestine. Belshazzar's Kingship. The Moabitic Inscriptions, and Omri and Ahab. The Samaritan Pentateuch. The Character of the Books—Austere. Variety of Writers and Unity of Plan. Contained the Surveys, and the Laws of the Nation. Introduced New and Republican Usages. Moses' Law in Advance of Modern Social Science. Testimony of the Jewish Nation. Testimony of Christ. The Lost Books. The Law Abolished by the Gospel. The Imperfect Morality of Old Testament. Polygamy, Slavery, and Divorce. The Education of the World a Gradual Process. The Imprecations of Scripture.
Infidelity Among the Stars, 335
Scientific Objections to the Bible. The Infinity and Self-Existence of the Universe. Disproved by Its Evident Limits. Its Composite Materials. Its Steady Loss of Heat. Buffon's Explosion of Planets. The Nebular Theories. The Fiction of Homogeneous Matter. The Contradictory Theories. The Perpetual Motion Machine. Contrary to Facts of Astronomy. Contradicted by Astronomers. Impossibility of any Cosmogony.
Daylight Before Sunrise, 378
Infidel Objections to Genesis. The Hindoo Chronology. The Egyptian Chronology. The Bible Age of the Earth. The Solid Firmament. Light Before the Sun.
Telescopic Views of Scripture, 423
The Source of the Water of the Deluge. The Stars Fighting Against Sisera. The Astronomers of the Great Pyramid. The Grand Motion of the Sun. The Formation of Dew. The Multitude of the Stars. The Descent of the Heavenly City.
Science or Faith? 466
Must Faith Fade Before Science? Scientists as Partial as Other People. Have no Such Certainty as is Claimed.
1. Mathematical Errors.
The Infinite Half Inch, Etc. The Doctrine of Chances. No Mathematical Figures in Nature. The French Metric System. The Lowell Turbine Wheel.
2. Errors of Astronomy.
Kant's Predictions; Le Verrier's. Herschel's Enumeration of Errors. Sun's Distance; Other Measurements. The Moon's Structure and Influence. La Place's Proposed Improvement. The Sun's Structure, Heat, Etc. The Sizes, Distances, and Densities of the Planets. Errors About the Nebulae. Errors About Comets. The Cosmical Ether. The Cold of Infinite Space. From This Chaos Springs the Theory of Development.
3. Errors of Geology.
No Fact of Geology Anti-Biblical. All Anti-Biblical Theories Based on an If. No Geological Measure of Time. All Calculations of Time by Geologists, which Have Been Tested, Have Proved Erroneous—the Danish Bogs; the Swiss Lake Villager; Horner's Nile Pottery; the Raised Beaches of Scotland; Lyell's Blunder in the Delta of the Mississippi; Sir Wm. Thompson's Exposure of the Absurdity of the Evolutionists' Demands for Time. Conflicting Geological Theories—the Wernerian, Huttonian, and Diluvian Theories; the Catastrophists and Progressionists; Eleven Theories of Earthquakes; Nine Theories of Mountains; False Geology of America; Scotland Kicked About Too.
4. Errors of Zoology.
Lamarck's Vestiges; Tremaux; Darwin's Contradictions; Huxley; Mivart, and Wallace. Blunders of the French Academy, Denouncing Quinine, Vaccination, Lightning Rods, and Steam Engines. Uncertainty of Science Increases in Human Concerns. Second-hand Science Founded on Somebody's Say So.
5. All Science Founded on Faith.
Reason Also Based on Faith. This Life Depends on Faith. We Demand Truths of which Science is Ignorant. All Our Chief Concerns in the Domain of Faith. Religion the Most Experimental of the Sciences. The Only Science which can Make You Happy. Try for Yourself.
This is not so much a volume upon the Evidences of Christianity, as an examination of the Evidences of Infidelity. When the Infidel tells us that Christianity is false, and asks us to reject it, he is bound of course to provide us with something better and truer instead; under penalty of being considered a knave trying to swindle us out of our birthright, and laughed at as a fool, for imagining that he could persuade mankind to live and die without religion. Suppose he had proved to the world's satisfaction that all religion is a hoax, and all men professing it are liars, how does that comfort me in my hour of sorrow? Scoffing will not sustain a man in his solitude, when he has nobody to scoff at; and disbelief is only a bottomless tub, which will not float me across the dark river. If Infidels intend to convert the world, they must give us some positive system of truth which we can believe, and venerate, and trust.
A glimmering idea of this necessity seems lately to have dawned upon some of them. It is quite possible that they have also felt the want of something for their own souls to believe; for an Infidel has a soul, a poor, hungry, starved soul, just like other men. At any rate, having grown tired of pelting the Church with the dirtballs of Voltaire and Paine, they begin to acknowledge that it is, after all, an institution; and that the Bible is an influential book, both popular and useful in its way. Mankind, it seems, will have a Church and a Bible of some sort; why not go to work and make a Church and a Bible of their own? Accordingly they have gone to work, and in a very short time have prepared a variety of ungodly religions, so various that the worldly-minded man who can not be suited with one to his taste must be very hard to please. Discordant and contradictory in their positive statements, they are agreed only in negatives; denying the God of the Bible, the resurrection of the dead, and judgment to come. Nevertheless each discoverer or constructor presents his system to the world with great confidence, large claims to superior benevolence, vast pretensions to learning and science, and no little cant about duty and piety. Wonderful to tell, some of them are very fond of clothing their ungodliness in the language of Scripture.
No pains are spared to secure the wide spread of these notions. Prominent Infidels are invited to deliver courses of scientific lectures, in which the science is made the medium of conveying the Infidelity. Scientific books, novels, magazines, daily newspapers, and common school books, are all enlisted in the work. The disciples of Infidelity are numerous and zealous. It would be hard to find a factory, boarding-house, steamboat or hotel where twelve persons are employed, without an Infidel; and harder still to find an Infidel who will not use his influence to poison his associates.
These systems are well adapted to the depraved tastes of the age. The business man, whose whole soul is set on money-making and spending, is right glad to meet the Secularist, who will prove to him on scientific principles, that a man is much profited by gaining the whole world, even at the risk of his soul, if he has such a thing. The young and ill-instructed professor of Christianity, whose longings for forbidden joys are strong, has a natural kindliness toward nationalism, which befogs the serene light of God's holy law, and gives the directing power to his own inner liking. The sentimental young lady, who would recoil from the grossness of the Deist, is attracted by the poetry of Pantheism. Infidelity has had, in consequence, a degree of success very little suspected by simple-minded pastors and parents, and which is often discovered too late for remedy.
This book is written to expose the folly of some of these novel systems of Infidelity—leaving others to show their wickedness. It may surprise some who would glory in being esteemed fiends, to learn that they are only fools. If they should be awakened now to a sense of the absurdities which they cherish as philosophy, it might save them from awaking another day to the shame and everlasting contempt of the universe.
I have not taken up all the cavils of Infidelity. Their name is Legion. Nor have I troubled my readers with any which they are not likely to hear. Leaving the sleeping dogs to lie, I have noticed only such as I have known to bark and bite in my own neighborhood, and know to be rife here in the West. They are stated, as nearly as possible, in the words in which I have heard them in public debate, or in private conversation with gentlemen of Infidel principles. I have made no references to books or writers on that side, save to such as I am assured were the sources of their sentiments. In such cases I have named and quoted the authors. Where no such quotations are noticed it will be understood that I am responsible for the fairness with which I have represented the opinions which are examined. It is not my design to fight men of straw.
Every historical or scientific fact adduced in support of the arguments here used is confirmed by reference to the proper authority. But it has not been deemed needful to crowd the pages with references to the works of Christian apologists. The Christian scholar does not need such references; while to those for whose benefit I write, their names carry no authority, and their arguments are generally quite unknown. One great object of my labor will be gained if I shall succeed in awaking the spirit of inquiry among my readers, to such an extent as to load them to a prayerful and patient perusal of several of the works named on the next page. They have heard only one side of the question, and will be surprised at their own ignorance of matters which they ought to have known.
Books on the Evidences are not generally circulated. Ministers perhaps have some volumes in their libraries; but in a hundred houses, it would be hard to find half a dozen containing as many as would give an inquiring youth a fair view of the historical evidences of the truth of the gospel. Nor, where they are to be found, are they generally read. Being deemed heavy reading, the magazine, or the newspaper is preferred. Ministers do not in general devote enough of their time to such sound teaching as will stop the mouths of gainsayers. I have been assured by skeptical gentlemen, who in the early part of their lives had attended church regularly for twenty-two years, that during all that time they had never heard a single discourse on the Evidences. Moreover, the protean forms of Infidelity are so various, and many of its present positions so novel, that books or discourses prepared only twenty years ago miss the mark; and rather expose to the charge of misrepresentation, than produce conviction. New books on Infidelity are needed for every generation.
The lectures expanded into this volume were delivered in Cincinnati, in 1858. Replying to different, and discordant systems of error, whose only bond is opposition to the gospel, they are necessarily somewhat disconnected. No attempt was made to mold them into a suit of royal armor, but merely to select a few smooth pebbles from the brook of truth, which any Christian lad might sling at the giant defiers of the armies of the living God. Having proved acceptable for this purpose, and a steadily increasing demand for repeated editions wearing out the original plates, the author has been requested by British and American publishers to revise the work in the light of the recent discoveries of science. This he has attempted; with what success the reader will judge. Conscious of its many defects, yet grateful to God for the good which he has done to many souls by its instrumentality, the author again commends the book to the Father of Lights, praying him to use it as a mirror to flash such a ray of light into many dark souls as may lead them into the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
SAN FRANCISCO, March 30, 1875.
* * * * *
The author having been repeatedly asked by inquirers for the names of books on the Evidences of Christianity, subjoins a list of those easily accessible in the West. It is not supposed that any one inquirer will read all these; but it is well to read more than one, since the evidence is cumulative, and it is impossible for any writer to present the whole. Having a list of several works, the inquirer who can not obtain one may be able to procure another. There are many other works on the Evidences on the shelves of all our principal booksellers.
Modern Atheism, by James Buchanan, LL. D.
Typical Forms and Special Ends in Creation, by James McCosh, LL. D., and George Dickie, M. D.
Religion and Geology, Edward Hitchcock, LL. D.
The Architecture of the Heavens, J. P. Nichol, LL. D.
The Christian Philosopher, Thomas Dick, LL. D.
Natural Theology, William Paley, D. D.
The Analogy of Religion, Natural and Revealed, to the Constitution and Course of Nature, Joseph Butler, D. C. L.
The Bridgewater Treatises, Whewell, Chalmers, Kidd, &c.
The Comprehensive Commentary, William Jenks, D. D.
The Cause and Cure of Infidelity, Rev. David Nelson.
A View of the Evidences of Christianity, William Paley, D. D.
The Eclipse of Faith, ascribed to Henry Rogers.
The Restoration of Belief, ascribed to Isaac Taylor.
Lectures on the Evidences of Christianity, University of Virginia.
The Divine Authority of the Old and New Testaments Asserted, J. Leland, D. D.
The Bible Commentary.
An Apology for the Bible, in a Series of Letters to Thomas Paine, R. Watson.
A View of the Internal Evidence of the Christian Religion, S. Jenyns.
A Letter to G. West, Esq., on the Conversion of St. Paul, Lord Lyttleton.
Observations on the History and Evidence of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ, Gilbert West, Esq.
Difficulties of Infidelity, Faber.
Dissertations on the Prophecies, Thos. Newton, D. D.
An Introduction to the Critical Study of the Scriptures, T. H. Horne, Vol. I.
The Evidences of Christianity, Charles Petit McIlvaine, D. D.
Rawlinson's Historical Evidences.
Modern Skepticism, by Joseph Barker.
Haley's Discrepancies of the Bible, W. G. Holmes, Chicago.
The Superhuman Origin of the Bible, Rogers.
Christianity and Positivism, McCosh.
The Supernatural in Relation to the Natural, McCosh.
Aids to Faith, Appleton & Co.
Modern Skepticism, Randolph & Son.
Modern Doubt, Christlieb.
Alexander's Evidences of Christianity.
DID THE WORLD MAKE ITSELF?
Understand, ye brutish among the people; And, ye fools, when will ye be wise? He that planted the ear, shall he not hear? He that formed the eye, shall he not see? He that chastiseth the heathen, shall he be not correct? He that teacheth man knowledge, shall he not know?—PSALM xciv. 8, 9.
Has the Creator of the world common sense? Did he know what he was about in making it? Had he any object in view in forming it? Does he know what is going on in it? Does he care whether it answers any purpose or not? Strange questions you will say; yet we need to ask a stranger question: Had the world a Creator, or did it make itself? There are persons who say it did, and who declare that the Bible sets out with a lie when it says, that "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." Whereas, say they, "We know that matter is eternal, and the world is wholly composed of matter; therefore, the heavens and the earth are eternal, never had a beginning nor a Creator."
But, however fully the atheist may know that matter is eternal, we do not know any such thing, and must be allowed to ask, How do you know? As you are not eternal, we can not take it on your word.
The only reason which anybody ever ventured for this amazing assertion is this, that "all philosophers agree that matter is naturally indestructible by any human power. You may boil water into steam, but it is all there in the steam; or burn coal into gas, ashes, and tar, but it is all in the gas, ashes, and tar; you may change the outward form as much as you please, but you can not destroy the substance of anything. Wherefore, as matter is indestructible, it must be eternal."
Profound reasoning! Here is a brick fresh from the kiln. It will last for a thousand years to come; therefore, it has existed for a thousand years past!
The foundation of the argument is as rotten as the superstructure. It is not agreed among all philosophers that matter is naturally indestructible, for the very satisfactory reason that none of them can tell what matter in its own nature is. All that they can undertake to say is, that they have observed certain properties of matter, and, among these, that "it is indestructible by any operation to which it can be subjected in the ordinary course of circumstances observed at the surface of the globe." The very utmost which any man can assert in this matter is a negative, a want of knowledge, or a want of power. He can say, "Human power can not destroy matter;" and, if he pleases, he may reason thence that human power did not create it. But to assert that matter is eternal because man can not destroy it, is as if a child should try to beat the cylinder of a steam engine to pieces, and, failing in the attempt, should say, "I am sure this cylinder existed from eternity, because I am unable to destroy it."
But not only is the assertion of the eternity of matter unproven, and impossible to be proved, it is capable of the most demonstrable refutation, by one of the recent discoveries of science. The principle of the argument is so plain that a child of four years old can understand it. It is simply this, that all substances in heaven and earth are compounded of several elements; but no compound can be eternal.
We say to our would-be philosophers, When you tell us that matter is eternal, how does that account for the formation of this world? What is this matter you speak of? This world consists not of a philosophical abstraction called matter, nor yet of one substance known by that name, but of a great variety of material substances, oxygen, hydrogen, carbon, sulphur, iron, aluminum, and some fifty others already discovered. Now, which of these is the eterna-matter you speak of? Is it iron, or sulphur, or clay, or oxygen? If it is any one of them, where did the others come from? Did a mass of iron, becoming discontented with its gravity, suddenly metamorphose itself into a cloud of gas, or into a pail of water? Or are they all eternal? Have we fifty-seven eternal beings? Are they all eternal in their present combinations? or is it only the single elements that are eternal? You see that your hypothesis—that matter is eternal—gives me no light on the formation of this world, which is not a shapeless mass of a philosophical abstraction called matter, but a regular and beautiful building, composed of a great variety of matters. Was it so from eternity? No man who was ever in a quarry, or a gravel pit, will say so, much less one who has the least smattering of chemistry or geology. Do you assert the eternity of the fifty-seven single substances, either separate or combined in some other way than we now find them in the rocks, and rivers, and atmosphere of the earth? Then how came they to get together at all, and particularly how did they put themselves in their present shapes?
Each of them is a piece of matter of which inertia is a primary and inseparable property. Matter of itself can not begin to move, or assume a quiescent state after being put in motion.
Will you tell us that the fifty-seven primary elements danced about till the air, and sea, and earth, somehow jumbled themselves together into the present shape of this glorious and beautiful world, with all its regularity of day and night, and summer and winter, with all its beautiful flowers and lofty trees, with all its variety of birds, and beasts, and fishes? To bring the matter down to the level of the intellect of the most stupid pantheist, tell us in plain English, Did the paving stones make themselves? For the paving stones are made out of a dozen different chemical constituents, and each one is built up more ingeniously than the house you live in. Now, did the paving stones make themselves?
No conviction of the human mind is more certain than the belief that every combination of matter proves the existence of a combiner, that every house has had a builder, and that every machine has had a maker. No matter how simple the combination, if it be only two laths fastened together by a nail, or two bricks cemented with mortar, or the sole of an old pegged boot, all the atheists in the world could not convince you that those two laths, or those two bricks, or those two bits of leather existed in such a combination from all eternity. If any wise philosopher tried to persuade you that for anything you could tell they might have been always so, you would reply, "No, sir! You can't cram such stuff down my throat. Even a child's common sense shows him that those two laths were not always so nailed together; that those two bricks were not always so placed, one on the top of the other; and that those two pieces of old sole leather were not always pegged together in the sole of a boot." There is no conviction more irresistible than our belief that no compound can possibly be eternal.
But the universe is the greatest of all compounds. Everything in it is compound. Chemists speak of simple substances, or elements of matter, and it is well enough to separate the elements of things in our thoughts, for the sake of distinct consideration, and to speak of the properties of pure oxygen, or of pure hydrogen, or of pure carbon, or of pure gold, or of pure iron, or of pure silver. But then we should always remember that there is nothing pure in the world, that there is no such thing in nature as any substance consisting only of a single element, pure and uncombined with others. Just as your gold eagle is not pure gold, but alloyed with copper, everything in nature is alloyed. Everything in the heavens above, and in the earth beneath, and in the waters under the earth, is compound. The air you breathe, simple as it seems, is composed of three gases, and is besides full of what Huxley calls "a stirabout" of millions of seeds of animalculae and motes of dust visible in the sunbeam. That hydrant water you are about to swallow is a rich aquarium full of all manner of monsters, which the oxy-hydrogen microscope will exhibit to your terrified gaze, devouring each other alive. Should you get rid of them by evaporating your water, your chemist will tell you that still your pure water must be a compound of oxygen and hydrogen. There is no help for it.
Many years ago some astronomers fancied they had found clouds, or nebulae, of gas, quite simple and uncompounded with anything else, a great many millions of miles away in the sky. They were so very far away that they thought nobody would ever be able to fly so far to bottle up a specimen of that gas and bring it back here to earth and analyze it, to find out whether it was pure and simple, or compound. So they felt quite safe in affirming that there was the genuine, simple, homogeneous gas, in the nebulae, with which Almighty God had nothing whatever to do, but which had first made itself and then had condensed into our present world. But unfortunately for this brilliant discovery the spectroscope opened windows into the nebulae, and showed very plainly that they were on fire; and fire is a compound; it can not burn without fuel and something to support the combustion; so that settled the alleged simplicity of the nebulae. It is now demonstrated, therefore, that every known substance existing in nature is a compound, and therefore can not be eternal. And the whole is not greater than the sum of its parts. No number of finite existences can be eternal. The universe, then, can not be eternal.
Suppose, however, that, for the sake of argument, we should grant our atheistic world-builder his materials, away off beyond the rings of Saturn, or the orbit of Uranus (since he seems to like to have his quarries a good way off from his building), would he be any nearer the completion of his world-making? As Cornwallis declared that the conquest of India resolved itself ultimately into a question of bullocks, the prime consideration in the construction of the world, after you have got your materials, is that of transportation. When one beholds the three great stones in the temple of Baalbec, each weighing eleven hundred tons, built into the wall twenty feet high, and a fourth in the quarry, a mile away, nearly ready for removal, he asks, "How did the builders move those immense stones, and raise them to their places?" And when we behold the quarry out of which these stones were taken, and all the other quarries of the world, and all the everlasting mountains, and the whole of this solid earth, and boundless sea, brought, as our theorists affirm, from far beyond the orbit of the most distant planet, we raise the question of transportation, and demand some account of the wagon and team which hauled them to their places. We can not get rid of the necessity for transportation by evaporating the building stones into gas, for a world of gas weighs just as many tons as the world made out of it. Before we can make a world we must have power; but we can never get power out of the world to build itself. The atheists' world is only a great machine. The first law of mechanics is that action and reaction are equal; consequently machinery can never create power. You will never lift yourself by pulling at your boot-straps; much less can a machine lift and carry itself.
It is no matter how big you make the wheels of your machine, as big as the orbits of the planets if you like, still it is only a machine, unless it has a mind in it; and your big machine can no more create power than a little machine as small as a lady's watch. Nor does it make the least difference in respect to making power, of what materials your perpetual motion peddler makes his machine—whether of a skein of silk on a reel in a bottle, or of steel and zinc electro magnets running upon diamond points, or whether he melts up his steel, and zinc, and diamonds into red hot fire mist; it is still only a machine, made of these materials, as destitute of power as the smaller machines made out of it. The atheists' universe is only a big machine, and no machine can create power, no more than a paving stone.
It has been, however, proposed to manufacture power by the law of gravitation, according to which all bodies attract each other, directly in proportion to their mass, and inversely as the square of their distances. This law appears to prevail as far as our observation extends through space; and our world builders affirm that it must have operated eternally, and that not only were the separate parts of our earth thus drawn together, but that all the orbs of heaven were caused to revolve under its influence.
Suppose, however, we grant that matter was eternal, and the force of gravitation eternally operating upon it, would that sufficiently account for the building up of even our own little planetary system? By no means.
The unresisted force of gravitation would, in far less than an eternity, draw all things together toward the center of gravity of the universe. We should not have separate stars, and suns, and planets, and moons, revolving in orderly orbits, but one vast mass of matter, in which all motion had long since ceased. There must be some power of resistance to gravitation, and nicely balanced against it, a centrifugal force—no matter whether you call it heat, light, or electricity, or by any other name—from which balance of power the movements of the universe are regulated. But here again we arrive at the same conclusion from the balance of power to which we were before driven by the combination of matter—regulated power proclaims a regulator, a governor. Power belongeth unto God.
In world-building we need not only a quarry of materials, and power for transportation, but a head to plan their arrangement. For, as ten thousand loads of brick and stone dumped down higgledy piggledy will not build a house, neither will ten thousand millions of materials poured into a chaos make a world like this earth, arranged in order and beauty. It is grossly absurd to imagine that the inanimate materials of the earth arranged themselves in their present orderly structure.
Absurd as it seems to every man of common sense, there are persons claiming to be philosophers who not only assert that they did, but will tell you how they did it. One class of them think they have found it out by supposing every thing in the universe reduced to very fine powder, consisting of very small grains, which they call atoms; or, if that is not fine enough, into gas, of which it is supposed the particles are too fine to be perceived; and then by different arrangements of these atoms, according to the laws of attraction and electricity, the various elements of the world were made, and arranged in its present form.
Suppose we grant this gassy supposition, that the world millions of ages ago existed as a cloud of atoms, does that bring us any nearer the object of getting rid of a Creator than before? The atoms must be material, if a material world is to be made from them; and so they must be extended; each one of them must have length, breadth and thickness. The atheist, then, has only multiplied his difficulties a million times, by pounding up the world into atoms, which are only little bits of the paving stones he intends to make out of them. Each bit of the paving stone, no matter how small you break it, remains just as incapable of making itself, or moving itself, as was the whole stone composed of all these bits. So we are landed back again at the sublime question, Did the paving stones make themselves, and move themselves?
Others will tell you that millions of years ago the world existed as a vast cloud of fire mist, which, after a long time, cooled down into granite, and the granite, by dint of earthquakes, got broken up on the surface, and washed with rain into clay and soil, whence plants sprang up of their own accord, and the plants gradually grew into animals of various kinds, and some of the animals grew into monkeys, and finally the monkeys into men. The fire mist they stoutly affirm to have existed from eternity. They do not allege that they remember that (and yet as they themselves are, as they say, composed body and soul of this eternal fire mist, they ought to remember), but only that there are certain comets which occasionally come within fifty or sixty millions of miles of this earth, which they suppose may be composed of the fire mist which they suppose this world is made of. A solid basis, truly, on which to build a world! A cloud in the sky, fifty million of miles away, may possibly be fire mist, may possibly cool down and condense into a solid globe; therefore, this fire mist is eternal, and had no need of a Creator; and our world, and all other worlds, may possibly have been like it; therefore, they also were never created by Almighty God. Such is the atheist's ground of faith. The thinnest vapor or the merest supposition will suffice to risk his eternal salvation upon; provided only it contradicts the Bible and gets rid of God. We can not avoid asking with as much gravity as we can command, Where did the mist come from? Did the mist make itself? Where did the fire come from? Did it kindle of its own accord? Who put the fire and mist together? Was it red hot enough from all eternity to melt granite? Then why is it any cooler now? How could an eternal red heat cool down? If it existed as a red hot fire mist from eternity, until our atheist began to observe it beginning to cool, why should it ever begin to cool at all, and why begin to cool just then? Fill it as full of electricity, magnetism and odyle as you please; do these afford any reason for its very extraordinary conduct? The utmost they do is to show you how such a change took place, but they neither tell you where the original matter came from, nor why its form was changed. Change is an effect, and every effect requires a cause. There could be no cause outside of the fire mist; for they say there was nothing else in the universe. Then the cause must be in the mist itself. Had it a mind, and a will, and a perception of propriety? Did the mist become sensible of the lightness of its behavior, and the fire resolve to cool off a little, and both consult together on the propriety of dropping their erratic blazing through infinite space, and resolve to settle down into orderly, well-behaved suns and planets? In the division of the property, what became of the mind? Did it go to the sun, or to the moon, or to the pole star, or to this earth? Or, was it clipped up into little pieces and divided among the stars in proportion to their respective magnitudes; so that the sun may have, say the hundredth part of an idea, and the moon a faint perception of it? Did the fire mist's mind die under this cruel clipping and dissecting process; or is it of the nature of a polypus, each piece alive and growing up to perfection in its own way? Has each of the planets and fixed stars a great "soul of the world" as well as this earth, and are they looking down intelligently and compassionately on the little globe of ours? Had we not better build altars to all the host of heaven and return to the religion of our acorn-fed ancestors, who burned their children alive, in honor of the sun, on Sun-days?
An aqueous solution of this difficulty of getting rid of Almighty God, is frequently proposed. It is known that certain chemical solutions, when mixed together, deposit a sediment, or precipitate, as chemists call it. And it is supposed that the universe was all once in a state of solution, in primeval oceans, and that the mingling of the waters of these oceans caused them to deposit the various salts and earths which form the worlds in the form of mud, which afterward hardened into rock, or vegetated into trees and men. Thus, it is clearly demonstrated that there is no need for the Creator if—if—if—we only had somebody to make these primeval oceans—and somebody to mix them together!
The development theory of the production of the human race from the mud, through the mushroom, the snail, the tortoise, the greyhound, the monkey and the man, which is now such a favorite with atheists, if it were fully proved to be a fact, would only increase the difficulty of getting rid of God. For either the primeval mud had all the germs of the future plants and monkeys, and men's bodies and souls, in itself originally, or it had not. If it had not, where did it get them? If it had all the life and intelligence in the universe in itself, it was a very extraordinary kind of God. We shall call it the mud-god. Our atheists then believe in a god of muddy body and intelligent mind. But if they deny intelligence to the mud, then we are back to our original difficulty, with a large appendix, viz: The paving stones made themselves first and all atheists afterward.
The whole theory of development is utterly false in its first principles. From the beginning of the world to the present day, no man has ever observed an instance of the spontaneous generation of life. There is no law of nature, whether electric, magnetic, odylic, or any other, which can produce a living plant or animal, save from the germ or seed of some previous plant or animal of the same species. Nor has a single instance of the transmutation of species ever been proved. Every beast, bird, fish, insect and plant brings forth after its kind, and has done so since its creation. No law of Natural Philosophy is more firmly established than this, That there is no spontaneous generation, nor transmutation of species. It is true there is a regular gradation of the various orders of animal and vegetable life, rising like the steps of a staircase, one above the other; but gradation is no more caused by transmutation than a staircase is made by an ambitious lower step changing itself into all the upper ones.
To refer the origin of the world to the laws of nature is absurd. Law, as Johnson defines it, is a rule of action. It necessarily requires an acting agent, an object designed in the action, means to attain it, and authoritative enforcement of the use of those means by a lawgiver. Are the laws of nature laws given by some supposed intelligent being, worshiped by the heathen of old, and by the atheists of modern times, under that name? Or do they signify the orderly and regular sequence of cause and effect, which is so manifest in the course of all events? If, as atheists say, the latter, this is the very thing we want them to account for. How came the world to be under law without a lawgiver? Where there is law, there must be design. Chance is utterly inconsistent with the idea of law. Where there is design there must, of necessity, be a designer. Matter in any shape, stones or lightnings, mud or magnets, can not think, contrive, design, give law to itself, or to any thing else, much less bring itself into existence. There is no conceivable way of accounting for this orderly world we live in but one or other of these two: Either an intelligent being created the world, or—the paving stones made themselves.
"Here are two hypotheses, of which the oldest is admitted to offer a full and consistent explanation of all the facts of science. There can be no better cause for any given formation than that God created it so. Men of science, however, allege that creation (out of nothing) is 'scientifically inconceivable;' but this is only throwing dust in our eyes; of course, science can not verify it, neither can it verify any other theory of causation. The question is whether reason can accept the fact, though science can not even imagine the process? If not, there is nothing for us but the eternity of matter, for evolution itself has to face the very same difficulty when asked to account for its primal germ. It is surely more conceivable that God created the first matter out of nothing, than that nothing evolved something out of itself, by an imminent law of its nature. This point, however, our scientific men are sadly given to shirking. They profess in general not to hold the eternity of matter, but they have nothing to suggest for its origin. They accept it as the starting point of evolution, and decline to speculate on its cause. This, as Dr. Christlieb observes of Bauer's kindred system of criticism, is 'beginning without a beginning—everything is already extant'. We may as well start with species, as with protoplasm, if the inquiry is not to be pushed beyond the fact. The evolutionist is bound to answer whether the process is eternal, or how it began to be. Either it had a beginning or it had not; if it had, creation out of nothing is conceded, and there is nothing left to dispute. It is puerile to except to the frequency of creative acts on the ordinary hypothesis of specific origin, because it is freely open to science to reduce the several 'kinds' to the lowest minimum it can experimentally establish. Moreover—besides the utter inconsequence of such purely relative ideas as often and rare—it is far more reasonable that an eternal, personal author of creation should watch over his work to shape and diversify it at his pleasure, than that, after a single act, he should relapse into inertia like the Hindu Brahmin. To concentrate the whole evidence of design in one original act, ages upon ages ago, with no opening for after interference, undermines belief in a personal designer, simply because it leaves him nothing to do."
Leaving these brutish among the people who assert the latter, to the enjoyment of their folly, let us ascertain what we can know of the great Creator of the heavens and the earth. God refers the atheists of the Psalmist's days to their own bodies for proofs of his intelligence, to their own minds for proofs of his personality, and to their own observation of the judgments of his providence against evil-doers for proofs of his moral government. Our text ascribes for him perception and intelligence: He that planted the ear, shall he not hear? He that formed the eye, shall he not see? It does not say, he has an eye or an ear, but that he has the knowledge we acquire by those organs. And the argument is from the designed organ to the designing maker of it, and is perfectly irresistible. A blind god could not make a seeing man. Let us look for a little at a few of the many marks of design in this organ to which God thus refers us.
We shall first observe the mechanical skill displayed in the formation of the eye, and then the optical arrangements, or rather a few of them, for there are more than eight hundred distinct contrivances already observed by anatomists in the dead eye, while the great contrivance of all, the power of seeing, is utterly beyond their ken. I hold in my hand a box made of several pieces of wood glued together, and covered on the outside with leather. Inside it is lined with cotton, and the cotton has a lining of fine white silk. You at once observe that it is intended to protect some delicate and precious article of jewelry, and that the maker of this box must have been acquainted with the strength of wood, the toughness of leather, the adhesiveness of glue, the softness and elasticity of cotton, the tenacity of silk, and the mode of spinning and weaving it, the form of the jewel to be placed in it, and the danger against which this box would protect it—ten entirely distinct branches of knowledge, which every child who should pick up such a box in the street would unhesitatingly ascribe to its maker. Now, the box in which the eye is placed is composed of seven bones glued together internally, and covered with skin on the outside, lined with the softest fat, enveloped in a tissue compared with which the finest silk is only canvas, and the cavity is shaped so as exactly to fit the eye, while the brow projects over like a roof of a veranda, to keep off falling dust and rain from injuring it while the lid is open; and the eyebrows, like a thatch sloping outward, conduct the sweat of the brow, by which a man earns his bread, away around the outer cover, that it may not enter the eye and destroy the sight. If it were preposterous nonsense to say that electricity, or magnetism, or odyle, contrived and made a little bracelet box, how much more absurd to ascribe the making of the cavity of the eye to any such cause.
Let us next look at the shape of the eye. You observe it is nearly round in its section across, and rather oval in its other direction, and the cavity it lies in is shaped exactly to fit it. Now there are eyes in the world angular and triangular, and even square; and as you may readily suppose, the creatures which have them can not move them; to compensate for such inconvenience, some of them, as the common fly, have several hundred. But, unless our heads were as large as sugar hogsheads, we could not be so furnished, and we must either have movable eyes or see only in one direction. Accordingly, the Contriver of the eye has hung it with a hinge. Now there are various kinds of hinges, moving in one direction, and the Maker of the eye might have made a hinge on which the eye would move up and down, or he might have given us a hinge that would bend right and left, in which case we should have been able merely to squint a little in two directions. But to enable one to see in every direction, there is only one kind of hinge that would answer the purpose—the ball and socket joint—and the Former of the eye has hung it with such a hinge, retaining it in its place partly by the projection of the bones of the face, and partly by the muscles and the optic nerve, which is about as thick as a candlewick, and as tough as leather. Most of you have seen a ship, and know the way the yards are moved, and turned, and squared by ropes and pulleys. The rigging of the eye, though not so large, is fully as curious. There is a tackle, called a muscle, to pull it down when you want to look down; another tackle to pull it up when you have done; one to pull it to the right, and another to the left; there is one fastened to the eyeball in two places, and geared through a pulley which will make it move in any direction, as when we roll our eyes; and the sixth, fastened to the under side of the eye, keeps it steady when we do not need to move it. Then the eyelids are each provided with appropriate gearing, and need to have it durable too, for it is used thirty thousand times a day; in fact every time we wink. If God had neglected to place these little cords to pull up the eyelash, we should all have been in the condition of the unfortunate gentleman described by Dr. Nieuwentyt, who was obliged to pull up his eyelashes with his fingers whenever he wanted to see. There is, too, another admirable piece of forethought and skill displayed by the Former of the eye, in providing a liquid to wash it, and a sponge to wipe it with, and a waste pipe, through the bone of the nose, to carry off the tears which have been used in washing and moistening the eye. Now what absurdity to say that a law of nature, say gravity, or electricity, or magnetism has such knowledge of the principles of mechanics as the eye proclaims its Former to have—that it could make a choice among multitudes of shapes of eyes and kinds of joints, and this choice the very best for our convenience; and that having known and chosen, it could have manufactured the various parts of this complicated machine. Such a machine requires an intelligent manufacturer; and yet we have only as yet been looking at the dead eye, paying no regard to sight at all. Even a blind man's eye prove an intelligent Creator.
Let us now turn our thoughts to the instrument of sight. The optic nerve is the part of the eye which conveys visions to the mind. Suppose, instead of being where you observe it, at the back part of the eye, it had been brought out to the front, and that reflections from objects had fallen directly upon it. It is obvious that it would have been exposed to injury from every floating particle of dust, and you would always have felt such a sensation as is caused by a burn or scald when the skin peels off, and leaves the ends of the nerves exposed to the air. The tender points of the fibers of the optic nerve, too, would soon become blunted and broken, and the eye, of course, useless. How, then, is the nerve to be protected, and yet the sight not obstructed? If it were covered with skin, as the other nerves are, you could not see through it. For thousands of years after men had eyes and used them, they knew no substance, at once hard and transparent, which could answer the double purpose of protection and vision. And to this day they know none hard enough for protection, clear enough for vision, and elastic enough to resume its form after a blow. But men did the best they could, and put a round piece of brittle but transparent glass in a ring of tougher metal for the protection of the hands of a watch; and he who first invented the watch crystal thought he had made a discovery. Now, observe in the eye, that forward part is the watch glass; the cornea, made of a substance at once hard, transparent and elastic—which man has never been able to imitate—set into the sclerotica, that white, muscular coat which constitutes the white of your eye, acts as a frame for the cornea, and answers another important purpose, as we shall presently see.
But, supposing the end of the nerve protected by the glass, we might have had it brought up to the glass without any interposing lenses or humors, as, in fact, is nearly the case with some crustacea. We can not well imagine all the inconveniences of such an eye to us. If we could see distinctly at all, we could not see much farther or wider than the breadth of the end of the nerve at once. Our sight would then be very like that faculty of perceiving colors by the points of the fingers, which some persons are said to possess. In that case, seeing would only be a nicer kind of groping, and our eyes would be more conveniently fixed on the points of our fingers; or, as with many insects, on the ends of long antennae. Such a form of eye is precisely suited to the wants of an animal which has not an idea beyond its food, which has no business with any object too large for its mouth, and whose great concern is to stick to a rock and catch whatever animalculae the water floats within the grasp of its feelers. But for a being whose intercourse should be with all the works of God, and whose chief end in such intercourse should be to behold the Creator reflected in his works, it was manifestly necessary to have a wider and larger range of vision; and, therefore, a different form of eye. Both these objects, breadth of field combined with length of range, are obtained by placing the optic nerve at the back of the eye, and interposing several lenses, through which objects are observed. By this arrangement a visual angle is secured, and all objects lying within it are distinctly visible at the same time. This faculty of perceiving several objects at the same time is a special property of sight which tends greatly to enlarge our conceptions of the knowledge of Him who gave it. A man who never saw can have no idea of it. He can not taste two separate tastes at once, nor smell two distinct smells at once; nor feel more than one object with each hand at once; and if he hears several sounds at the same time, they either flow into each other, making a harmony, or confuse him with their discord. Yet we are all conscious that we see a vast variety of distinct and separate objects at one glance of our eyes. I think it is manifest that the Former of such an eye not only intended its owner to observe such a vast variety of objects, but from the capacity of his own sight to infer the vastly wider range of vision of Him who gave it.
Besides the breadth of the field of vision, we also require length of range for the purpose of life. The thousand inconveniences which the short-sighted man so painfully feels are obvious to all. Yet it may tend to reconcile such to their lot to know that thousands of the liveliest and merriest of God's creatures can not see an inch before them. Small birds and insects, which feed on very minute insects, need eyes like microscopes to find them; while the eagle and the fish hawk, which soar up till they are almost out of sight, can distinctly see the hare or the herring a mile below them, and so must have eyes like telescopes. We, too, need to observe minute objects very closely, as when we read fine print, or when a lady threads a fine needle at microscope range; but, if confined to that range, we could not see our friends across the room, or find our way to the next street. Again, in traveling we need to see objects miles away, and at night we see the stars millions of miles away; but then, if confined to the long range, we should be strangers at home, and never get within a mile of any acquaintance. Now, how to combine these two powers, of seeing near objects and distant ones with the same eye, is the problem which the Maker of the eye had to solve. Let us look how man tried to solve it. A magnifying lens will collect the rays from any distant object, and convey them to a point called the focus. Then suppose we put this glass in the tube of an opera-glass, or pocket spy-glass, and look through the eye-hole and the concave lens, properly adjusted, in front of it, we shall see the image of the object considerably magnified. But suppose the object draws very near, we see nothing distinctly; for the rays reflected from it, which were nearly parallel while it was at a distance, are no longer so when it comes near, but scatter in all directions, and those which fall on the lens are collected at a point much nearer to the lens than before, and the eye-glass must be pushed forward to that focus. Accordingly, you know that the spy-glass is made to slide back and forward, and the telescope has a screw to lengthen or shorten the tube according to the distance of the objects observed. Another way of meeting the case would be by taking out the lens, and putting in one of less magnifying power, a flatter lens, for the nearer object. Now, at first sight, it would seem a very inconvenient thing to have eyes drawing out and in several inches like spy-glasses, and still more inconvenient to have twenty or thirty pairs of eyes, and to need to take out our eyes, and put in a new set twenty times a day. The ingenuity of man has been at work hundreds of years to discover some other method of adapting an optical instrument to long and short range, but without success. Now, the Former of the eye knew the properties of light and the properties of lenses before the first eye was made; he knew the mode of adjusting them for any distance, from the thousands of millions of miles between the eye and the star, to the half-inch distance of the mote in the sunbeam; and he had not only availed himself of both the principles which opticians discovered, but has executed his work with an infinite perfection which bungling men may admire, but can never imitate. The sclerotic coat of the eye, and the choroid which lies next it are full of muscles which, by their contraction, both press back the crystalline lens nearer the retina, and also flatten it; the vitreous humor, in which the crystalline lens lies, a fine, transparent humor, about as thick as the white of an egg, giving way behind it, and also slightly altering its form and power of refraction to suit the case. Thus, that which the astronomer, or the microscopist, performs by a tedious process, and then very imperfectly, we perform perfectly, easily, instantly, and almost involuntarily, with that perfect compound microscope and telescope invented by the Former of the human eye. Surely, in giving us an instrument so admirably fitted for observing the lofty grandeur of the heavens and the lowlier beauties of the earth, he meant to allure us to the discovery of the perfections of the great Designer and Former of all these wondrous works.
But there is another contrivance in the eye, adapted to lead us further to the consideration of the extent of the knowledge of its power. We are placed in a world of variable lights, of day and night, and of all the variations between light and darkness. We can not see in the full blaze of light, nor yet in utter darkness. Had the eye been formed to bear only the noonday glare, we had been half blind in the afternoon, and wholly so in the evening. If the eye were formed so as to see at night, we had been helpless as owls in the day. But the variations of light in the atmosphere may be in some measure compensated, as we know, by regulating the quantity admitted to our houses—shutting up the windows. When we wish to regulate the admission of light to our rooms, we have recourse to various clumsy contrivances; paper blinds, perpetually tearing, sunblind rollers that will not roll, venetian blinds continually in need of mending, awnings blowing away with every storm, or shutters, which shut up and leave us in entire darkness. A self-acting window, which shall expand with the opening of light in the mornings and evenings, and close up of its own accord as the light increases toward noon, has never been manufactured by man. But the Former of the eye took note of the necessities and conveniences of the case, and besides giving a pair of shutters to close up when we go to sleep, he has given the most admirable sunblinds ever invented. The nerve of the eye at the back of its chamber can not see without light, and its light comes through the little round window called the pupil, or black of the eye—which is simply a hole in the iris, or colored part. Now this iris is formed of two sets of muscles: one set of elastic rings, which, when left to themselves, contract the opening; and another set at right angles to them, like the spokes of a wheel, pulling the inner edge of the iris in all directions to the outside. In fact it is not so much a sunblind, as a self-acting window, opening and closing the aperture according to our need of light, and doing this so instantaneously that we are not sensible of the process.
It is self-evident that the Maker of such an eye was acquainted with the properties of light, and the alternations of night and day, as well as with the mechanical contrivances for adjusting the eye to these variable circumstances. He has given us an eye capable of seeking knowledge among partial darkness, and of availing itself for this purpose of imperfect light; an apt symbol of our mental constitution and moral situation in a world where good and evil, light and darkness, mix and alternate.
Perhaps some one is ready to ask, What is the use of so many lenses in the eye? It seems as if the crystalline lens and the optic nerve were sufficient for the purpose of sight, with the cornea simply to protect them. What is the use of the aqueous humor and the vitreous humor?
Light, when refracted through the lens, becomes separated into its component colors—red, yellow, green, blue, and violet; and the greater the magnifying power of the lens, and the brighter the object viewed, the greater the dispersion of the rays. So that if the crystalline lens of the eye alone were used, we should see every white object bluish in the middle, and yellowish and reddish at the edges; or, in vulgar language, we should see starlight.
This difficulty perplexed Sir Isaac Newton all his life, and he never discovered the mode of making a refracting telescope which would obviate it. But M. Dolland, an optician, reflecting that the very same difficulty must have presented itself to the Maker of the eye, determined to ascertain how he had obviated it. He found that the Maker of the eye had a knowledge of the fact that different substances have different powers of refracting or bending the rays of light which pass through them, and that liquids have generally a different power of refraction from solids. For instance, if you put a straight stick in water, the part under water will seem bent at a considerable angle, while if you put the stick through a little hole in a pane of glass it will not seem so much bent. He further discovered that oil of cassia had a different power of refraction from water, and the white of an egg still a different power. He discovered also that the first lens of the eye, the aqueous humor, is very like water; that the crystalline lens is a firm jelly, and that the vitreous humor is about the consistency of the white of an egg. The combination of these three lenses, of different powers of refraction, secures the correction of their separate errors. He could not make telescope lenses of jelly, nor water; therefore, he could not make a perfect achromatic telescope, but he learned the lesson of mutual compensations of difficulties which the Maker of the eye teaches the reflecting anatomist, and procuring flint and crown glass of different degrees of refraction, he arranged them in the achromatic lens so as nearly to remedy the defect.
I think that you will at once admit that Dolland's attempt to remedy the evils of confused sight in the telescope indicated a desire to obtain a precise and correct view of the objects; and that his success in constructing an instrument, nearly perfect, for the use of astronomers, gave evidence that he himself had a clear idea of that perfect and accurate vision which he thus attempted to bestow on them. Shall we then imagine any inaccuracy in the sight of Him, who not only desired, but executed and bestowed on us, an instrument so perfectly adapted to the imperfections of this lower world, and whose very imperfections are the materials from which he produces clear and perfect vision? No! in God's eye there are no chromatic refractions of passions, or prejudice, or party feeling, or self-love. He sees no reflected or refracted light. O Father of Light! with whom is no variableness, or shadow of turning, open our eyes to behold Thee clearly!
Our text thus leads us to a knowledge of God's character, from the structure of the bodies he has given us. He that formed my eye sees. Though my feeble vision is by no means a standard or limit for his Omniscience, yet I may conclude that every perfection of the power of sight he has given me existed previously in him. Has he endowed me, a poor puny mortal, the permanent tenant of only two yards of earth, with an eye capable of ranging over earth's broad plains and lofty mountains, of traversing her beauteous lakes and lovely rivers, of scanning her crowded cities, and inspecting all their curious productions, and specially delighting to investigate the bodily forms of men, and their mental characters displayed on the printed page? Has he given me the principle of curiosity, without which such an endowment were useless? Then most undoubtedly he has Himself both the desire to observe all the works of his hands, and the power to gratify that desire. The Former of the eye must of necessity be the great Observer.
Wheresoever an eye is found of his handiwork, and wheresoever sight is preserved by his skill, let the owner of such an instrument know that if he can see, God can, and as surely as he sees, God does.
If it is possible for us to behold many objects distinctly at once, it is not impossible for God to behold more. If he has given us an eye to look from earth to heaven, then his eye sees from heaven to earth. If I can see accurately, God's inspection is much more impartial. And if he has given me the power of adjusting my imperfect vision to the varying lights and shades of this changing scene, let me not dream for a moment that he is destitute of a corresponding power of investigating difficulties, and penetrating darknesses, and bringing to light hidden works and secret things. God is light. In him is no darkness at all. Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight, but all things are naked and opened to the eyes of him with whom I have to do. He has seen all my past life—my faults, my follies, and my crimes. When I thought myself in darkness and privacy, God's eye was upon me there. In the turmoil of business, God's eye was upon me. In the crowd of my ungodly companions, God's eye was upon me. In the darkness and solitude of night, God's eye was upon me. And God's eye is on me now, and will follow me from this house, and will watch me and observe all my actions, on—on—on—while God lives, and wheresoever God's creation extends.
"O God, Thou has searched and known me; Thou knowest my down sitting and mine uprising; Thou understandest my thoughts afar off. Thou compassest my path and my lying down, And art acquainted with all my ways For there is not a word in my tongue, But, lo! O Lord, Thou knowest it altogether. Thou hast beset me behind and before, and laid thine hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me! It is high, I can not attain unto it; Whither shall I go from thy Spirit? And whither shall I flee from thy presence? If I ascend up into heaven, Thou art there, If I make my bed in hell, behold, Thou art there! If I take the wings of the morning, And dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, Even there shall thy hand lead me, And thy right hand shall hold me. If I say, 'Surely the darkness shall cover me,' Even the night shall be light about me; Yea the darkness hideth not from thee, But the night shineth as the day, The darkness and the light are both alike to Thee."
 Reid's Chemistry, II. Sec. 37.
 Johnson's Turner's Chemistry, Sec. 341.
 It might be supposed that such a theory is too palpably absurd to be believed by any save the inmates of a lunatic asylum, had not the writer, and hundreds of the citizens of Cincinnati, seen a lecturer perform the ordinary experiment of producing colored precipitates by mixing colorless solutions, as a demonstration of the self-acting powers of matter. Common sense, being a gift of God, is righteously withdrawn from those who deny him.
 John Bull.
WAS YOUR MOTHER A MONKEY?
In the previous chapter we saw the evidences of God's skill and wisdom in the adaptations of nature, fitting the organs of animals for hearing, walking, and eating, and especially in the structure of the human eye. This has long been owned by candid minds as an unanswerable argument, demonstrating the being of God by the works of his hands. But since that chapter was written a school of scientists has arisen, of whom Mr. Darwin is at present the most popular, claiming to be able to show how all the species of living things can evolve, not only their eyes, but their legs and wings and lungs, and every part of them, from a little bit of primeval life stuff, called protoplasm, by the influence of Natural Selection. Mr. Darwin owns that the formation of an eye is rather a tough job for a little pin point germ of protoplasm; but he has no doubt that it has been done, and he writes several books to show us how. We propose to look into this self-evolving process, as he and his brother evolutionists describe their theory.
It is necessary, right here at the outset, to distinguish the theory of the evolutionists from the great fact of evolution. Almighty God created the world, not only for his own pleasure, but also for his own glory, that men and angels might learn to know him by his works. Creation is thus God's great object lesson for men and angels to learn. But learning is a process, gradual, slow, from one step to another. Therefore the object lesson must not be precipitated all in a heap upon the infantile intellects of the learners, but unfolded by degrees. Geologists assure us that so it was in the past; that first the lifeless strata were deposited; next, light was evolved; afterward, fishes, and marine reptiles, and birds; then came the carboniferous or plant era; afterward the mammalia; last of all man. You observe here an ascending scale of creation, beginning with first principles and simple forms, and ascending to the most complicated; a series of experiments in God's great lecture-room, illustrative of the various steps of the evolution of the divine idea. But six thousand years before geology was born Moses described this same evolution of creation, in the first chapter of Genesis. As he could not have learned it from any science known in his day, God Himself must have shown it to him.
The divine idea is still in process of evolution for our instruction. We behold it in the continual formation of new strata by the destruction of the old; in the chemical combinations of the elements of the air, sea, and earth; in the evolution of the grass from the seed, and of the oak from the acorn; in the development of the insect germ into the caterpillar, and the butterfly; in the hatching of the egg into the chicken; and in the growth of the infant into the man. We observe also a divine development of society, an advance of civilization, a providential guidance of history, and a fall and disorder among mankind, with a process of redemption, medical, educational, political and religious, for the human race. The whole process, therefore, of the creation, natural history, and moral government of the world, is the development of a divine idea, according to a divine plan, by the direct or mediate efficacy of divine power, for the accomplishment of the divine purpose as revealed to us in the divine word, the Holy Scriptures. Galen taught that the study of physiology was a divine hymn. This divine development is to be clearly and sharply distinguished from the atheistic theory of evolution. They differ in the following particulars:
1. The divine development of the world is a great fact; the theory of atheistic evolution is only a baseless theory, a fiction.
2. The divine development begins in the beginning, with God, creating the heavens and the earth; but the theory of atheistic evolution has no beginning, asserting the eternal existence of a changing world.
3. The divine development is the unfolding of an intelligent plan, showing the adaptation of means to ends for the accomplishment of a purpose; the atheistic theory of evolution denies plan, purpose, adaptation and final cause.
4. The divine development is conducted, and continually reinforced by the will of the Omnipotent God; the atheistic development evolves only the forces of matter.
5. The divine development has a moral character, and terminates in the highest holiness and happiness of all obedient men and angels; but the atheistic development contemplates and promises only the evolution of animal instinct and passions, the eternal death of the individual, and, for the universe, only purposeless cycles of progress, and catastrophies of ruin.
In this chapter we discuss only the theory of atheistic evolution. In the discussion of all questions affecting human life it is advantageous to trace them to their origin, and to follow them out to their practical results. Thus we get a clear view of the whole subject, and are enabled to assign to it its proper influence. It is also a great benefit to the mass of mankind to conduct such discussions in plain language, and to translate the roundabout phrases, and the Latinized words of scientific men, as much as we can, into the vulgar tongue; to state the subjects of discussion so as to be understood of the people. So we shall put the whole business of Darwinism and development before you, reader, in a nutshell, by simply asking you the question at the head of this chapter, "Was your mother a monkey?"
What a question!
Well, then, your grandmother? her grandmother? or does it seem less offensive, or more likely to you to go back some thousands of years, and say your forefathers were apes?
That is exactly what Mr. Darwin says when we translate his scientific language into the vulgar tongue: "The early progenitors of man were no doubt once covered with hair, both sexes having beards; their ears were pointed and capable of movement; and their bodies were provided with a tail having the proper muscles. The foot, judging from the condition of the great toe in the foetus, was then prehensile, and our progenitors, no doubt, were arboreal in their habits, frequenting some warm forest-clad land. The males were provided with great canine teeth, which served them as formidable weapons." This ancient form "if seen by a naturalist, would undoubtedly have been ranked as an ape or a monkey. And as man, under a genealogical point of view, belongs to the CATARHINE or Old World stock (of monkeys), we must conclude, however much the conclusion may revolt our pride, that our early progenitors would have been properly thus designated." So here you have your genealogy, name and thing fully described. Mr. Darwin thinks it is quite an honorable pedigree: "Thus we have given to man a pedigree of prodigious length, but not, it may be said, of noble quality. * * * Unless we willfully close our eyes, we may, with our present knowledge, approximately recognize our parentage, nor need we feel ashamed of it. The most humble organism is something much higher than the inorganic dust under our feet; and no one with an unbiased mind can study any living creature, however humble, without being struck with enthusiasm at its marvelous structure and properties."[A] There are people, however, who do not grow enthusiastic at the idea of their long-tailed progenitors; but there is no accounting for taste in such matters!
For elderly people, who do not take so enthusiastically to monkeys as his junior readers, Mr. Darwin has provided a rather less gymnastic ancestry. How would you like to have a fish for your forefather? If it were one of Neptune's noble tritons, or the Philistine fish-god, Dagon, or a mermaid, it might not be so repulsive as the ape; or even a twenty-pound salmon, flashing its silver and blue in the sunlight as it spins the line off the reel, might not be so utterly disgusting as the monkey burlesque of humanity. But, alas! Mr. Darwin has been sent to this proud nineteenth century as the prophet to teach us humility, and here is the scientific statement of the structure of our fishy forefathers: "At a still earlier period the progenitors of man must have been aquatic in their habits, for morphology plainly tells us that our lungs consist of a modified swim bladder which once served as a float. These early predecessors of man thus seen in the dim recesses of time must have been as lowly organized as the lancelot or amphibioxus, or even still more lowly organized."
That certainly is a very humble origin. We are not, however, by any means to the end of our pedigree. Mr. Darwin says that your codfish aristocracy are descended from a race of squirts—the squirts which you picked up on the shore and squeezed, when you were a boy, discharging these primitive Babcock Extinguishers upon your playfellows, irreverently regardless of the harm done the poor squirt, the ancestor of the human race. If you doubt it, here is the latest deliverance of infallible science upon the subject. He describes the Ascidians: "They hardly appear like animals, and consist of a simple tough leathery sack, with two small projecting orifices. They belong to the Molluscoida of Huxley, a lower division of the great family of the Mollusca; but they have recently been placed by some naturalists among the vermes or worms. Their larvae somewhat resemble tadpoles in shape, and have the power of swimming freely about. * * * We should thus be justified in believing that, at an extremely remote period, a group of animals existed resembling in many respects the larvae of our present Ascidians, which diverged into two great branches, the one retrograding in development and producing the present class of Ascidians, the other rising to the crown and summit of the animal kingdom, by giving birth to the vertebrata." Thus it appears that Mr. Darwin deduces his origin, and that of mankind in general, from one of these Ascidians, or, in plain English, makes them a race of squirts.
The notion of evolution is a belief that all living beings, plants as well as animals, have not been created, but, like Topsy, just grew, from the very smallest germs or spores. Evolutionists inform us that all kinds of organisms have been evolved from four or five primeval germs or spores; or more consistently with their great principle, that the simple gave birth to the differentiated, from one primeval germ or egg. Mr. Darwin alleges four or five primal forms, acknowledging that analogy would lead him up to one. But other members of this school consistently and boldly follow up the stream to its fountain, and allege a single primeval living seed as the origin of all living things, and that this must have been a microscopic animalcule, or plant spore, of the very lowest order, which, multiplying its kind, gave birth to improved and enlarged offspring; and they, in their turn, grew, and multiplied, and differentiated into varieties; and so, in the course of endless ages, the poorer sorts perishing and the better sorts prospering, the world became filled with its existing populations, without any new creative acts of God, and without any particular providential care over the new species.
The particular process according to which this multiplication and improvement took place, Mr. Darwin calls Natural Selection. Every creature tends to increase and multiply; and the very slowest breeders would soon fill the earth, were their multiplication not checked by hunger, by the attacks of enemies, and by the struggle for existence. But all are not born alike strong, or swift, or of the same color; some of the same brood are better fitted to escape enemies, or to fight the battle of life, than others. These will survive, while the weak ones perish. This Mr. Wallace calls, the survival of the fittest. They will transmit their superior size, or swiftness, or better color, or whatever superiority they possess, to their offspring. The process will go on in successive generations, each adding an infinitesimal quantity to the stock gained by the past generation; just as breeders of improved stock increase the weight of cattle by breeding from the largest; or breeders of race-horses increase the speed by breeding from the swiftest. In this way varieties from the same family will grow into different species. And, as only those differences which are beneficial to the animal are preserved, they will grow into improved species; and, as variations of all sorts take place, so all sorts of varieties and species arise in process of time. All will thus tend to perfect themselves according to the laws of nature, and without any special oversight or care of God, or of anybody but Natural Selection; which Mr. Darwin takes special care to describe as an unintelligent selector. He defines the nature which selects to be "the aggregate action and product of natural laws," and these laws are "the sequences of events as ascertained by us." He ridicules the idea of God's special endowment of the fantail pigeon with additional feathers, or of the bull dog's jaws with strength, and says, "But if we give up the principle in the one case, if we do not admit that the variations of the primeval dog were intentionally guided in order, for instance, that the greyhound, that perfect image of symmetry and vigor, might be formed; no shadow of reason can be assigned for the belief that variations alike in nature, and the results of the same general laws which have been the groundwork through Natural Selection of the most perfectly adapted animals in the world, man included, were intentionally and specially guided." This, then, is the grand distinctive difference of Mr. Darwin's mode of producing the various animals; namely, that it is unintelligent, their variations are not designed nor intended by the Creator, but they are the results of a method of trial and error, producing a hit-and-miss pattern. The failures all perish, and the successes live and prosper; but there is no intentional or special guidance of God in the business. And the business includes the whole process of peopling the globe, from the creation of the first four or five germs down to the last formation of human society. God is thus dismissed from the greatest part of the world's life, including all human affairs. This is not exactly atheism in theory, but practically it amounts to much the same thing.
It is this excommunication of God's agency from the management of the world, and especially from human affairs, by Mr. Darwin's method, which has so commended his books to the ungodly world. There is a general agreement among this class of writers, that Mr. Darwin has destroyed the basis of the argument for the being of God from design as displayed in the adaptations of birds and beasts to their conditions. Mr. Huxley says that "when he first read Mr. Darwin's book, what struck him most forcibly was the conviction that teleology, as commonly understood, had received its death blow at Mr. Darwin's hands." "For the notion that every organism has been created as it is, and launched straight at a purpose, Mr. Darwin substitutes the conception of something which may fairly be termed a method of trial and error. Organisms vary incessantly; of these variations the few meet with surrounding conditions which suit them and thrive; the many are unsuited and become extinguished. * * * For the teleologist (the Christian) an organism exists, because it was made for the conditions in which it was found. For the Darwinian an organism exists, because out of many of its kind it is the only one which has been able to persist in the conditions in which it was found. * * * If we apprehend the spirit of the Origin of Species rightly, then nothing can be more entirely and absolutely opposed to teleology, as it is commonly understood, than the Darwinian theory." Prof. Haeckel argues to the same purpose that Darwin's theory leads inevitably to Atheism and Materialism. Dr. Buchner says of Darwin's theory, "It is the most thoroughly naturalistic that can be imagined, and far more atheistic than that of his decried predecessor, Lamarck." Carl Vogt also commends it because "It turns the Creator, and his occasional intervention in the revolution of the earth and in the production of species, without any hesitation out of doors, inasmuch as it does not leave the smallest room for the agency of such a Being. The first living germ being granted, out of it the creation develops itself progressively by Natural Selection, through all the geologic periods of our planet, by the simple law of descent. No new species arise by creation, and none perishes by annihilation; the natural cause of things, the process of evolution of all organisms, and of the earth itself, is of itself sufficient for the production of all we see. Thus man is not a special creation, produced in a different way, and distinct from other animals, endowed with an individual soul, and animated by the breath of God; on the contrary, man is only the highest product of the progressive evolution of animal life, springing from the group of apes next below him."
Whether, therefore, Mr. Darwin himself intends his theory to be atheistic or not, it has had the misfortune to be so viewed by the greater number of its supporters; and, accordingly, it is this view of it which we shall keep prominent in the following discussion. Mr. Darwin does undoubtedly intend his theory to be antagonistic to the Bible account of creation and providence, and an improvement upon it; and, whether atheistic or not, it is undoubtedly anti-Christian.
I. The History of the Theory.
The first thing which strikes a common person on first hearing this theory is that it is a very queer notion for any Christian man to invent. We are naturally curious to know how a man, educated in a Christian country, could have fallen into it. But it is, in fact, no new discovery, but an old heathen superstition. Some four hundred years before Christ, when the world had almost wholly apostatized into idolatry, Democritus, among the Greeks, became offended with the vulgar heathen gods, and set himself to invent a plan of the world without them. From Eastern travelers the Greeks knew that the Brahmins, in India, had a theory of the world developing itself from a primeval egg. He set himself to refine upon it, and imagined virtually the Nebular Hypothesis. He said that all matter consisted of very small atoms, dancing about in all directions, from all eternity, and which at last happened into the various forms of the present world.
The ancient Phoenicians held a theory that all life was from the sea; and that, as the wet mud produces all sorts of herbs in spring now, so originally it produced all manner of animals. They worshiped it as a god, and called it Mot, or Mud. Anaximander took up the theory and carried it out in true Darwinian style, alleging that the first men sprang from the ground watered by the sea, and that they had spines like sea urchins; evidently deriving them from the Radiates. Lucretius still further developed the theory in a poem in six books. The spread of Christianity, however, hindered the spread of the doctrine, as Mr. Tyndall feelingly laments, until the Saracens overspread the East, when some of them, it seems, favored it. But it seems to be an unlucky dogma, since, with the downfall of the power of the false prophet, the anti-Christian form of science went down again.
The dogma of the transmutation of species reappeared, however, in the Romish Church in a religious form; the old heathenism, which had never been wholly banished from the minds of men, thus reasserting itself. About the tenth century some began to teach that the bread of the communion of the Lord's Supper was transubstantiated, and the wine also, into the body, and blood, and soul, and divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ. This is probably the most complete transmutation of species which has ever been imagined or described. The evolution of bread into Deity is only equaled by Mr. Tyndall's endowment of matter with all the potencies of life and thought; a miracle differing from the popish transubstantiation only in the element of time, but in its essential nature equally supernatural. The dogma excited great discussion for centuries, and produced as many theories of transubstantiation as we now observe of evolution, keeping philosophic minds and pens busy till the dawn of modern science after the Reformation.
La Place threw out the Nebular Hypothesis, which is substantially Democritus' concourse of atoms, only La Place endeavored to substitute circular motions under the law of gravitation, instead of Democritus' chance arrangement, as a sufficient cause for the formation and motions of planets. Herschel's discovery of the nebulae was hastily laid hold of by a number of writers, and notably by the author of the Vestiges of Creation, as furnishing the primeval matter necessary for world-making; and till the spectroscopic discoveries of the composite nature of gaseous nebulae, they were claimed as specimens of worlds in process of formation. La Place supposed his nebulous matter to be gas in a state of white-heat combustion, compared with which the heat of the hottest fire would be a cool bath. In no other way could he dissipate the world's substance into sufficient thinness for his vortices. But Spencer saw that this tremendous heat would be fatal to all forms of life, and especially to sensitive beings; and Tyndall shows us that this original matter must have had all the potencies of life and sensation, and a potency of sensation means being able to feel. Now the worst fate threatened against sinners in the Bible is a place in the lake burning with fire and brimstone, which burns at 500 deg. Fahrenheit; but the temperature of the original fire-mist was a thousand times hotter. Some of these scientists call such a fate as the Bible threatens against the wicked, cruel. But here is a hell manufactured by the evolutionists infinitely worse than that of the Bible; for the hell of the Bible is only for the wicked, but the evolutionists' hell is indiscriminately for all, saints and sinners, and all sorts of creatures, innocent as babes unborn of any crime; yet they, or, which is the same thing, the matter containing all the potency of their sensations, that is their power of feeling, were born in this hell, and kept in it from all eternity, until it pleased the evolutionists to begin to cool it down a little. However, it was rather scientific than benevolent reasons which induced Mr. Spencer to reverse the order of procedure, and make his star dust cold to begin with, and to heat it up by condensation and pressure to about the temperature of molten iron; which was still an uncomfortably warm lodging for Mr. Tyndall's potencies of sensation for some millions of years. The division of opinion about the original nebulae, however, still prevails; some evolutionists of the old-fashioned order still taking their nebulae hot, while others, with Spencer, prefer it cold, with star dust.
As to the Spontaneous Generation of life, there has been less progress of opinion, though great variety has been exhibited. Ovid and Virgil describe the way in which a carcass produces bees. It was generally believed that putrid meat produced the maggots, till the blow-flies were discovered laying their eggs. Then it was alleged that the entozoa, the worms found in the bodies of animals, were self-produced, without eggs, until the microscope discovered that one could lay 60,000 eggs. Strauss, however, adhered to the idea that as the tapeworm, as he supposed, was self-produced, so man was originated by the primeval slime. So also Professor Vogt, and M. Tremaux develop their animals from the land, and the latter accounts for their various qualities from the various qualities of their respective birthplaces, the crop being conditioned by the soil. But Mr. Darwin derives all his organisms from the sea. Electricity in its galvanic form was for a while the agent to fire the earthly or marine mud with the vital spark; and Mr. Crosse's experiments were supposed instances of the creation of acarii or mites in the battery bath, until it was found that the bath contained eggs and the electricity only hatched them. Some English evolutionists still adhere to the theory of Spontaneous Generation, but the leading Germans deny any instance of it being known. Huxley denies that any case of it has been established as now practicable; but supposes that if we could have been present at the beginning of the world, when all the elements were young and vigorous, we should have seen the chemical elements of the earth and air combining to form living beings, by the mere powers of their nature. If that were the fact, it would be a fact unique and unparalleled, utterly out of the course of nature, and so as contrary to the theory of evolution as if these living beings had been inspired with life by Almighty God.