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any accomplishment of a prophecy can be shown. I should like to see the reality of all that the Bible promises.
Mother.-That, my children we shall all see! may it be your lot to enjoy the blessings which those promises have offered to your acceptance!
The first five books of the Bible, or the Pentateuch, as they are called, were written by Moses, the great Jewish Legislator. They commence with Genesis, the meaning of which I suppose Charles can inform us.
Charles. It is from a Greek word which signifies the Be. ginning or Production.
Mother.-In Genesis we learn that the world was created by the Almighty word of God in six days, and, by the same unerring wisdom, it was pronounced to be perfeci. On the seventh day the great Architect “ rested from all his work,” and “ blessed and sanctified it.”—By this we are to understand the appointment of a Sabbath;—a seventh part of our time peculiarly appropriated to his own service and worship; and to man a day of repose and relief from his worldly labours.
The Mosaic account of the creation, is very concise; but its sublimity has been admired by the politest schools. I need only call your attention to the passage in which the production of light is described:“ and God said, let there be light; and there was light!" How exquisitely expressive of the grandeur of that power and wisdom, that could speak into existence, a substance, at once so astonishing and so useful.
The division of time into weeks, can no otherwise be ac. counted for, but in the divine ordinance, for the period is entirely arbitrary; not being indicated by any aspect of nature, as days, months, and years, are by the revolutions of the sun and moon.
On the sixth day, having prepared an habitation, and provid· ed an abundance of fruits, God created one man, and one woman.
He made them good, like the rest of his works, and endued them with ability to continue in their native holiness; yet with liberty to choose between virtue and vice. They were placed in the garden of Eden, and liad permission to cat freely the fruits of all the trees, one only being excepted as a test of their obedience. They did not long preserve their allegiance: they violated the condition
upon which they had been so bounteously provided, and incurred the penalty of death! The pleasures of Eden were forfeited; paradise lost-and their future subsistence was now to be gained through toil and sorrow. Yet all was not lost; that mercy which is from eternity, had provided relief, and now enlightened their darkness with a feeble, but infallible intimation of a Saviour, to break the power of the enemy, which had endeavoured to work their ruin, to rescue them from the grave, and restore them to an eternal life.
Their first descendants were Cain and Abel; the former, a cultivator of the earth, and the latter a keeper of sheep. At an appointed time, each of these brothers offered a sacrifice to the Lord.
Fanny.—Tell us, if you please, what is meant, strictly by a sacrifice, and how it originated?
Mother.—By a sacrifice, we mean, generally, an offering to the Deity as an acknowledgment of his power, and a payment of homage. We have no account of the origin of this mode of worship; but we connot hesitate in ascribing it to divinc authority, because Adam was taught immediately by his Creator, and without a command to that effect, it is highly probable that he would not have thought of destroying animals committed to his care: nor should he have imagined, that an offering, apparently so cruel, would have been acceptable to him, whose benevolence was impressed on every thing around him.
The offering of Abel, on this occasion was accepted, while that of his brother was rejected. This preference, instead of awakening in Cain a sense of his own unworthiness, and a desire to find favour by relying on the divine word, inflamed him with rage and instigated him to the murder of Abel. Thus early did the effect of Adam's disobedience appear in the depravity of his son!
The next remarkable event of which we read, is the translation of Enoch, a descendant of Seth, the third son of Adam. In reward for his cxemplary piety he was taken to heaven without the pain of dying. The life of man was protracted, at this time, to a great length. Methusalem, the oldest man of whom we have ever heard, lived to the age of 969 years. The earth then would be peopled rapidly, and we find that vice increased in the same proportion. To such a pitch had wickedness arrived that in the year of the world 1656, God resolved to destroy all mankind by a flood, because," the earth was filled with violence, and the imagination of man's heart was only evil continually.” From this most awful judgment, one righteous man and his family were exempted. This was Noah, the great grandson of Enoch, who was commanded by God, to build an ark, or ship, and to go into it. He was directed to take with him two of every kind of fowl, and of cattle, and of every creeping thing, that they might be kept alive.
Catharine.-It must have taken a great while to build se large a vessel?
Mother.-Moses, has not told us, nor has he left any date from which we might calculate how long Noah was thus employed. Profane authors are, therefore, not agreed on the question; some say an hundred years, and others think the labour required even a longer time. While Noah was engaged in building his ark, he warned the people of the impending calamity, but he symptoms of penitence appeared to avert the divine wrath, and accordingly, at the appointed time,“ all the fountains of the great deep were broken up;—and the windows of heaven were opened, and it rained forty days;—and all the high hills that were under the whole heavens were covered, and all flesh died that moved upon the earth.” “ After the end of 150 days," to continue in the words of the sacred historian, for I can find none so descriptive," the waters were abated, and in the seventh month, the ark,-(which had floated safely throughout this terrible deluge) -rested on the mountains of Ararat, and the earth soon became dry Noah then brought his family out of the vessel, in which they had been confined a whole year.”
Charles. In what part of the world is a spot so remarkable as these mountains, to be found?
Catharine.-Noah landed on a mountain of Asia, in Armenia; a part of the chain called Caucasus.
Mother. The country is high; and is said to have been, in those days, very fertile, and therefore most suitable for the first habitation of man after the flood. The period of time from the creation to the deluge embraces 1656 years, and is called the first age of the world
The first act of Noah, when he descended from the ark, was to build an altar, and offer a sacrifice; and nothing, surely, could be more natural and becoming, than an expression of gratitude in the most solemn manner, for a deliverance so exceedingly wonderful! But the goodness of his divine preserver did not stop here. He graciously assured Noah, that he would not « again sweep mankind from the face of the earth,” and he directed him to consider the Rainbow as à token of his promise.
Fanny.-Do you think, mother, that a Rainbow had never been seen before that time! Did it never rain before the deluge!
Mother. The words of scripture, “ behold I do set my bow in the clouds, and it shall be for a token of a covenant between me and the earth,“ have led some to suppose that the bow was created at this time and for this very purpose: but they do not necessarily imply this narrow construction. It is quite probable that the Rainbow had always appeared, under the same combination of circumstances, that we behold in our own time; but it pleased the Almighty to point to it, on this occasion, as the sign or memorial of a promise. Others have said that though it had rained before the deluge, the same superintending providence which caused the Rainbow to appear as a pledge of his promise, might have prevented the concurrence of such circumstances, in the time of rain, as were essentially necessary to form a bow.It might have rained when the sun was set,-or when that lumi. nary was more than 5 | degrees high, when no bow could be seen, and the rain might continue between the spectator and the sun, or in any other direction, but that of an opposition to the sun.*
* See Ewing's lectures, on Philosophy, p. 306.
FOR THE PORT FOLIO.
“ MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING.”
“ From my house, (if I had it,) the sixth of July.”
A diverting anecdote about a southern gentleman who is coming to these parts to look for a wife, has been merrily running - VOL. IV.
the rounds of our newspapers, under the odd title of small-talk.* This is what the lawyers call a misnomer, as I am very sure that so uncommon an occurrence as that of a bachelor of West river, “ turning husband,” must have made a great talk among the good people of that neighbourhood! Why he should leave his native fields on such an errand, I know not. On the banks of that wizard stream, there are jewels that the world could not buy, and a man might well say with Claudio in the play,“ I would scarce trust myself, though I had sworn the contrary, if Hero would be my wife.” But pray Mr. Oldschool, who is this gen. tleman who has resolved that the maidens of West river shall not see “a bachelor of three score” in him; but is willing “ to thrust his neck into a yoke and wear the print of it?" How shall our Green-mountain girls and curd-pressers of Cheshire, recognize this “ Cælebs, in search of a wife;"—this « Monsieur Love,” who has slung Cupid's quiver over his shoulders, and is coming from the tobacco fields of Maryland to the onion patches of New
· * The following is the paragraph, to which our correspondent refers, If our young traveller is not afraid of being led by the nose in this perilous adventure, we would recommend to him, Dr. Morse's Gazetteer. In this work he will read of a place which, although it does not overflow with milk and honey, is described by the Doctor as famous for fine girls; and a lover who has got his apparel together, and new ribbands to his pumps,--we infer from the same authority, may find a Thisbe, without submitting to the earnest injunction of Bully Bottom, the weaver.-See Mids. Night Dream, a. 4, 8c. 2.-Ep. P. F.
LOOK OUT GIRLS-A MARKET FOR A DAIRY WOMAN.
An opulent planter on the banks of the West-River, near Annapolis, Maryland, requested'a traveller from this vicinity to send him a good dairy woman-gravely observing, that he would give a thousand dollars for a girl who could make good cheese. The traveller replied, that we did not sell that kind of stock in New England. The old man concluded, by his advice, to send his son to get him a New England wife, and the young man is directed to choose his wife by tasting her cheese. So, look oul girls.