Billeder på siden


translation of the word “ a dins ;” and na; but, when only the state of the it is much to be lamented, that so im- dead in general is meant, it is always proper, at any rate so unequivocal, a expressed by the word Hades, which, word, should be used in our confession though it is rendered by the same of faith. Unlearned Christians can word, Hell, yet signifies only the input no other construction upon it, than visible state, or the state of the dead what they are continually hearing ap- in general. St. Peter, in the 2d chapplied to it from the pulpit; and even

ter of the Acts of the Apostles, and too many, without doubt, far above the 27th and 31st verses, speaking of our common class, understand it in no Blessed Saviour's soul being not left other sense.

in Hell, uses this word.—In one of my If it be not going beyond the limits bibles, printed in the year 1599, it is which you allow to articles of this de- rendered the grave in both those passcription, I should wish to say a few sages; and it is extraordinary that so words in defence of the doctrine in obvious a translation should not have question. That the Christ“ descended been continued. into Hell,” is not indeed expressly as- I am, yours, &c.

CHRISTIANUS. serted by any one of the Evangelists; Birmingham, Aug. 20, 1819. but they all relate, that He expired on the cross: as, then, there must have been a separation of his soul and body, as his soul could neither have been ex

QUEENSBERRY, tinct, nor in a dormant state, and as

Not generally known, and, as far as I it did not re-animate his body until the know, never before published.-W.L. third day, it must have been some- A labouring man, in one of the extenwhere during that interval; and we sive breweries in London, happened may reasonably infer, that he “de- by some accident to fall into a pan of scended into Hell ;” i.e. that his soul boiling liquor, and was not missed went to the common abode of spirits, until some of the workmen discovered who were waiting for the general re- something floating on the surface, surrection : indeed, our Lord's address which, upon examination, proved to to the thief upon the cross, “ To-day be the fragments of a human body. thou shalt be with me in paradise, Search was instantly made, and the is no small proof of the truth of this bones of the unfortunate man were doctrine. Bishop Tomline says, that found at the bottom of the pan, as this doctrine of the Christ's descent clean as if they had been scraped with into Hell, was first introduced into a knife. These being carefully colCreeds, for the purpose of declaring lected together, were conveyed home the actual separation between the soul to his disconsolate widow, then in an and body of our Lord, in opposition to advanced state of pregnancy. The those heretics, who asserted, that the shock was so great, that she was imcrucifixion produced only a trance, or mediately taken in labour, and deliverdeliquium, and that the Christ did not ed of twins, making in all a family of really suffer death. I am, Sir, thirteen, without any means of supYour obedient servant, port. A petition was drawn up, and

CLERICUS. presented to the Duke of Queensberry,

who then resided at one of his places

of abode on the banks of the Thames. On the Descent of Christ into Hell. His Grace being struck with the me

lancholy circumstance, seemed to pe

ruse the paper with deep attention; Sir,

and, with tears in his eyes, calling for In reply to the inquiry of your corre- pen and ink, subscribed his name for spondent, A SEARCHER, respecting the One Thousand Pounds! Such an inmeaning of the word Hell, in the stance of almost unparalleled generoApostles' Creed, and that of St. Athan- sity, was soon followed by handsome asius, he may rest perfectly assured, subscriptions from others: a committhat it does not mean there, the place tee was formed; the widow received a appointed for the final punishment of decent allowance for life; the children the wicked. Whenever that is spoken were well educated; and, at the death of in the New Testament, the word of the mother, the remaining money Hell in the original, is always Gehen- was equally divided among them,




A Dissertation on Geology.



them. Now, as all the strata were [Continued from col. 780.]

produced by separate successive depo

sitions, it is manifest, that the shells Of all the rocks which I have men- which are found in any particular strationed, the granite is the most ancient; tum must have belonged to the fishes it is therefore the foundation of the which existed when that particular rest. But although it lies beneath stratum was deposited. It is equally every other rock, its summit towers evident, that the shells, or bones of above them all. The second rock rests quadrupeds, which are found in any on the first, the third on the second, particular alluvial soil, must have bethe fourth on the third, and so on. longed to the fishes which inhabited Almost all of the primitive, the tran- the water, or to the quadrupeds which sition, and the flætz rocks, are strati- lived on the earth, at the period when fied. A rock is said to be stratified, the deluge which destroyed them hapwhen it is divided by parallel seams pened. We are thus enabled to ascerinto masses, of which the length and tain the precise order in which all breadth are much greater than the these animals have existed, and conthickness. These extended, or tabu- sequently the precise order in which lar masses, are called strata. In the they were created. By a careful exmore ancient formations, they are from amination of the earth's contents, we four to six feet in thickness; but in are enabled to settle that most importthe more recent, their thickness is less ant question: whether Moses was diconsiderable. The strata of the primi- vinely inspired, or whether he was an tive and transition rocks are either artful, though an ignorant, impostor? vertical or inclined. In the flætz, they In almost every part of Europe, and are horizontal, as the name implies. in several parts of America, the strata Cuvier thinks, that all strata must ori- of the earth have now been explored ginally have been formed in a horizon- with more or less accuracy. But in tal position, and that the vertical and Germany, France, and England, they inclined strata have been thrust up at have been subjected to the most carea subsequent period by some violent ful investigation, the most elaborate : commotion. Jameson thinks, that they research, and the most rigid scrutiny: were formed in their present situation; in Germany, by the immortal Werner; but, with due deference, I must say, in France, by the illustrious Cuvier; that the former opinion appears most in England, by the indefatigable Farey probable. All the rocky strata were and the ingenious Parkinson. The formed separately, by regular succes- result has been, that wherever an sive depositions. They were formed accurate knowledge of facts could be in the bosom of the ocean; and it ap- obtained; the most exact agreement pears, that in general they were pro- between the words of Moses and the duced by a calm and gradual operation. phænomena of nature was discovered. In a few cases, however, there appears -Hallelujah! to have been a sudden rising and a O ye, who, ignorant of all sciences violent swelling of the waters; and in save only the knowledge of Christ, one or two instances, formations seem have believed the Bible in the simplito have originated from fresh water. city of your hearts, how must ye glow The alluvial rocks, or rather, the allu- with holy rapture, on being inforined vial soils, were formed, not in the of an event like this! ye required no ocean, but on dry land. They have other proof than the still small voice generally been produced by sudden of the enlightening Spirit: yet, meand violent inundations, sometimes of thinks it must be grateful to you to the sea, sometimes of rivers.

reflect, that philosophy liaih demon*Almost all the transition and flætz strated wbat faith admitted. strata, and almost all the allavial soils, We learn from the observations of abound with shells in a petrified state; Farey and of Parkinson, that in the

nd the bones of animals, in a state of lowest stiatum, in which fossil shellst petrifaction, are found in some of are found, coal is also discovered.

* The primitive rocks contain nu organic application of this fuct; for the coal which remains.

Werner foumd is not a vegetable production, + I am informed by an eminent Mineralogist, but is evidentiy a wweral substance. If that Parkinson has committed a mistake in the I be true, we are certainly deprived of No. 9,--VOL. I.



Parkinson, in his “ Organic Remains,” | striking is the fact, how wonderful the has argued with great strength and consideration, that amid the unnumclearness to prove, that coal is formed bered bones that have been discovered from vegetable matter in a state of in England, in France, in Europe, in bituminization. The vegetable matter the world, not a single human bone has must consequently be older than the been found in a fossil state. I repeat coal which is produced from it. But it: not a single trace, not a solitary coal is coeval with the most ancient vestige, of petrified human bones has fishes. It follows, that the first vege- ever been discovered.*-It was once table matter was anterior to the first imagined, that some bones which had fishes. Moreover, we are informed been brought from Gibraltar were huthat Werner himself ascertained that man; but the famous John Hunter coal is of still greater antiquity; that pronounced them to be the bones of it is even found along with the por- ruminating animals; and in this he phyry and greenstone, which has been confirmed by Cuvier. Spalamong the primitive formations. Now, lanzani believed, that the bones which we have the most positive proof, that he brought from the island of Cerigo there were no living beings on our were human; but he was refuted by globe when the primitive rocks were Blumenbach, even before the time of formed. We may therefore consider Cuvier. This great, this unrivalled it as a fact indisputable, that vegeta- anatomist, has at length settled the bles were created before the produc- question. He has positively affirmed, tion of any living creatures. If we that no human bone in a fossil state gradually ascend from the lowest stra- has yet been discovered. It may, tum, which contains any fossil remains, perhaps, be objected, that the quadruwe shall pass through a long succes- peds which Cuvier found in the gypsion of strata, which contain an infini- sum quarries round Paris were contude of shells both testaceous and fined to a small spot; and consecrustaceous, and some bones of the quently, that it is not so very extraorlarger kinds of fish: but not a single dinary that no human relics should be bone of any land animal can be dis- found among them. But this objeccerned among them. We have, there- tion will not apply to the alluvial beds, fore, the clearest evidence, that fishes Some of these alluvial formations, and existed in the sea at a period when the the animals which they_contain, are earth was almost entirely covered with very widely extended. The fossil elewater, and land animals could not phants, for instance, have been found exist upon its surface. But when, in in almost every country, from one our journey upwards, we arrive at the extremity of Europe to the other; and newest of the flætz formations, we dis- they have been found even in America

. cover the remains of terrestrial ani- We have therefore great reason to mals. When we ascend still higher, conclude, that land animals lived and reach the alluvial beds, we find upon the earth at a period when the the mineralized bones of land animals human race were not in existence. in greater quantities—But, oh! how Behold, then, the order of creation,

means of proving that trees and other plants the primitive rocks, although we have not the were produced before any animals began to means of ascertaining their existence. exist. Still, however, it is apparent that coal, and consequently that vegetables, existed * It is an opinion of the vulgar, that the before the creation of the greater number of fragment of a human skeleton, found at Guafishes; and that no animals whatever preceded daloupe, and now in the British Museum, is them, excepting zoophytes and fishes of the really petrified. But men of science speak testaceous kind. Now, the Hebrew terms, in very different language : they tell us, that it is which Moses describes the creation of fishes, nota petrifaction, but only an incrustation

. plainly shew us, that he speaks of such fishes With regard to its antiquity, nothing only as are loco-motive. But as zoophytes pronounced; for the sandstone, in which it and testaceous fishes are not loco-motive, they was imbedded, is capable of being converted must have commenced their existence at some in a few years from loose sand into solid stone. other period. This is not my criticism, but I must not omit to add, on the authority of the criticism of an ingenious writer in Tilloch's Jameson, that Sir Humphrey Davy ascer, Philosophical Magazine. It should also be tained that it still retains some of its animal obscrved, that trees and other plants may, at

matter, and all, or nearly all, its phosphate an early period, have flourished upon some ofl of lime.

can be ance.


A Dissertation on Geology.


with respect to this earth and to its may be started, both by the Christian inhabitants. You may read it in the and the Infidel. Several have passed book of nature as distinctly as in the through my own mind. Some are so page

of Revelation. At first, the earth obvious, that they must strike every was covered by an accumulation of person who is capable of thinking. waters. At length, dry land appeared, I shall therefore set down all the and vegetation commenced. After- objections which have presented themwards, the series of animated beings selves to my mind, if I can recollect arose :—the aquatic tribes ;—the land them all, and I shall place them in the animals ;-the human race.---This we strongest light possible. To each of have received on the authority of the objections I shall subjoin the best Scripture. This we have long known answer which I am able to be the account of Moses. This we If I be in error, may God pardon me, now know to be matter of fact. for Christ's sake: but if truth be on Hallelujah!

my side, may I be enabled to plead But here it may be remarked, that with power, and may my cause be Moses speaks of the birds as having gained! May it be imprest with the been created together with, or at least seal of God, and registered in the immediately after, the fishes; and it courts of Heaven! may be asked, what is the decision of Objection I.-Moses tells us in the Geology herein ?-I answer, that on most plain and simple language, that this point the study of Geology has the work of creation occupied six days. not yet afforded the smallest light. That these are common natural days The fossil remains of birds are very is evident, not only from the tenor of rare.* It appears, that they first occur the first chapter of Genesis, but also in those formations which contain the from the manner in which they are most ancient beasts. Now, these referred to and applied in the fourth birds may have been formed at the commandment. But if the crust of the same time as the beasts, or they may earth was really formed in the manner have been formed a little before; we you have described, and if there were cannot ascertain which. In this case, so many successive generations both therefore, the study of Geology has of fishes and of beasts before the formneither confirmed nor weakened the ation of man, it is evident that the authority of Moses. If, however, we term day must be understood figuramay argue from analogy, it is reason- tively. From both, or from either of able to infer, that could we gain any these reasons, it is manifest that the positive knowledge on the subject, we work of creation must have occupied should find a perfect correspondence an immense portion of time. between the assertion of Moses and Answer.-To the above charge I the fact in question.

must plead guilty. Yes, it is evident Having shewn that in several im- from both, or from either of the aboveportant points, a correct study of mentioned causes, that the creation nature corroborates the Scriptures, I must have comprised a period of many approach to the most difficult part of years, perhaps of many ages. The the task which I have undertaken. fact is too plain, too glaring. It is in I am aware, that although the system vain to deny it. But let the hardened which I have laid down does generally infidel suspend his judgment, before harmonize with the Bible, it does yet he condemn the Scripture account as appear in some respects to be at vari- unphilosophical; and let the sincere I am

aware that objections but bigoted Christian pause, before

* Two reasons may be offered, to account human relics. He intimates, that the imfor the non-appearance of the petrified remains mense masses of bone which we find entombed of birds. Firstly; their bones are much more in solid rocks may well have been preserved ; slight and perishable than the bones of qua- but that the bones of man being small and drupeds. Secondly; they possess the means slender, have naturally perished. It is really of escaping, at least for a time, the ravages of strange, that such a reason should be proffered a violent inundation.

by a man who is not unacquainted with the I hail the present opportunity of answering works of Cuvier. He might bave learnt from a very ignorant, and of course a very self- him, that the bones of animals have been presufficient writer, who endeavours to account served, which are as small as those of a rat; for the absence, or at least the paucity, of yea, as small as those of a field mouse.


he reject as false what men of science | ing of that very creation which he had know to be true. I entreat both the just told us occupied six days. In this one and the other to hear me patiently verse he actually employs the word and dispassionately:-In every part day to designate the whole period of of the Sacred Writings, figures and creation. I conceive, that this pasimages are admitted ; but in the pro- sage alone is sufficient to silence all phetic writings, they are particularly cavillers: and for this we are indebted conspicuous. It is well known to to Mr. Parkinson. He has pointed it those who have studied these books, out at the end of the third volume of that in the prophetic language a day is his organic remains. There is another put for a year. You will reply, that circumstance which is highly deserving in the first chapter of Genesis there is of our notice: a day, with us, is meano such thing as prophecy. I grant sured by the revolution of the earth on it; but I now proceed to shew you, its axis, which is performed in about that in many parts of Scripture which twenty-four hours; and we judge of are not prophetical, the term day is the time by the position of the sun. employed with equal and even greater But on the third day, the day in which latitude. Christ once discoursing with vegetables were produced, the sun the Jews said, “ Abraham saw my was not made. It therefore follows, day, and was glad.” The word day that this third day at least could not here refers either to the whole period have been exactly and precisely what of his sojourning on earth, or to the we now understand by the phrase a time of his public ministry. If we day:-Can you require any thing even restrict it to the latter, we shall | farther? be able to shew that Christ used the It will probably be insisted, that term day to denote three years and a although the word DAY may be taken half. In the sixth verse of the ninety- in the most unlimited sense, it is evififth Psalm we read, “In the day of dent from the fourth commandment temptation, in the wilderness.” It is that in the present case it must be clear, both from the end of this verse taken literally.—It is there stated, and from the beginning of the eighth, that we must do all the work which that the sacred poet is speaking of the we have to do in the six days of the forty years which the Israelites passed week, but that we must refrain and in the desart. Here, then, a day rest on the seventh.”-I answer, that stands for forty years. The prophet the argument grounded on this passage Malachi calls the Christian dispensa- is certainly plausible ; but it has one tion, “ the day.” Now we know that fault, it proves too much. It is said, this day has already occupied the space that God employed six days in the of nearly two thousand years. Christ execution of his work, and rested on and the Apostles speak repeatedly of the seventh; and that we, on this the day of judgment. It is also called account, must execute our works in the last day, the day of the Lord, the the six days, and rest on the seventh. day of Christ, &c. No person who Now, if you insist that the days must thinks upon the subject can imagine, be the same in the one case as in the that the important, various, and com- other, I shall insist that the labour plicated business which is to be trans- and the rest must be of the same acted at that awful period, will really nature in the one case as in the other. be hurried over in a few short hours. I shall insist that the Deity, after I shall next notice that remarkable working constantly for six days, was passage wherein St. Peter declares, fatigued, and had need of rest.—You " that one day is with the Lord as a see to what a degree of absurdity, I thousand years." were easy to mul- might almost say of impiety, you bave tiply quotations, for the purpose of driven me, by your obstinate perseshewing that no word in the whole verance, in maintaining that the term Scripture is used more variously and day must be taken literally. You will indefinitely than the word day: but I probably say, it is evident from the shall content myself with pointing out nature of things that the Deity could

In the fourth verse of the not really be fatigued, and therefore second chapter of Genesis, Moses him- could not rest fiterally. I answer, it self uses the word day with consider- is evident from the nature of things, able latitude. This passage is the more that this earth, constituted as it is, to the point, because Moses is speak- I could not have been made in six days.

one more.

« ForrigeFortsæt »