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local changes, small, perhaps, individually, but collectively important, have continually occurred, and are still going on.
I appeal to geology, and there I find, in nature's indelible hand-writing, the history of mighty revolutions which have been carried on through untold ages of past time, for ends and purposes, mysterious indeed to man, and known only to Him at whose bidding the foundations of the world are discovered, and the fountains of the great deep broken up, who looketh upon the earth and it trembleth.
places be drawn round the globe, it will be found that different parts of the same line will vary in latitude as much as 13°.* The geologist then takes up the key thus given him, and applies it to unlock some of the hidden records of former changes; and, observing how much alterations of climate affect both the animal and vegetable population of a district, he learns how some at least of those important changes of species which he meets with may have taken place. He sees how the corroding influence of the elements wears down the highest peaks, and leaves their fragments in the plains below; how the billows of the ocean, unceasingly preying upon the land, reduce to pebbles the hardest rocks; and infers whence came the beds of similar ruins which he meets with in exploring the surface of the earth. Nor are the observations of the geologist confined entirely to our own sphere;
Since, however, he is pleased to make use of secondary agents to work his purposes, we cannot deem it an unprofitable employment to trace the working of the laws which he has imposed upon nature, investigating the phenomena which are going on before our eyes, and the changes consequent upon them, that we may apply the results to decipher the obscure indications of former revolutions. for after remarking with wonder the This brings under consideration ano- effects of volcanic action on the surther and quite distinct science,―mete- face of his own planet, he turns the orology; by which is meant the con- telescope of the astronomer to our sideration of all the phenomena con- attendant satellite, and sees there nected with our atmosphere, and the traces of igneous action far more changes they are capable of pro- violent, and destruction far more ducing. universal.
The meteorologist who has examined into the mutual effects which the land, water, and air produce on each other, finds the result to be of more importance than the unthinking or superficial observer is apt to imagine. He finds that a country covered with forests, or one intersected with lakes or rivers, will have a far different climate from one more cultivated or more hilly, though under the same latitude; that an island has a more agreeable temperature, and a moister or warmer air, than a large continent under the same parallel. Indeed, if lines representing the limits of equal average heat at different
He sees streams of lava beside which those of Iceland or Auvergne appear small and insignificant; and however he may speculate concerning the actual condition of her surface, he learns at least that some of the causes which affect our own globe, have also been at work on others. Let not, however, the reader imagine that when he enters on the study of this universal science, he is instantly set afloat in the regions of hypothesis and conjecture.
The true business of a geologist is, to gather facts, not to frame theories;
* Lyell's Geology, vol. i., chap. 7.
to learn what nature had done, to tell far from any one being discouraged what she might have done. Con- from this study by the numerous jectures will, no doubt, force them- collateral sciences which it includes, selves upon his mind as he proceeds; this circumstance may rather form an but he should remember that they are inducement than otherwise to the conbut conjectures after all, which may sideration of it, as a science which be overthrown in an instant by some above all others is calculated to more fortunate one, while the facts on direct the well-disposed mind to look which they are founded, however he beyond its more immediate objects, may misapply them, are indisputable to Him whose hand has made all and certain. these things, and to lead him in admiration to exclaim, "O Lord, how manifold are thy works! in wisdom
It was this disposition to theorise on insufficient data, perhaps on no data at all, which formerly brought hast thou made them all; the earth geology into disrepute with many is full of thy riches." serious and well-meaning persons,
who, mistaking the abuse of it for
its natural tendency, decried the sci
ADVERSITY ON THE HUMAN MIND...
ence altogether as leading to free- ON THE EFFECTS OF PROSPERITY AND thinking and infidelity; and now, when philosophers have begun to leave off making theories, and to rest satisfied with accumulating facts, they find themselves obliged, at every step, to combat objections which were only just when applied to their predecessors, in the very infancy of the science.
Ir is a favourite topic with moralists in general, to rail at prosperity as the destroyer of all the noble qualities that adorn human nature. The readiest way of accounting for the universality of this opinion is, that most authors, being poor, are actuated Nor let the reader suppose that by similar motives with the fox when because this science includes within he exclaimed against the sour grapes. its pale so many others, it is therefore Prosperity, it is granted, is so great necessary to acquire a thorough know- an incentive to pride, that its possesledge of the latter before he enters sors are very apt to forget their duty upon the study of the former: it as men, and to look on all who are would not be desirable, were it pos- not so fortunate as themselves, as an sible, for every individual to aim at a inferior species of animals; but we general acquaintance with them all; frequently see adversity produce the but geology draws them as it were same effect, though from a different after it, and renders some information cause. Excessive indigence will conon the different branches of knowledge, dense the efforts of the soul beneath not only useful, but highly interesting, the proper level, as much as the exand is calculated to induce the study treme of affluence will inflate them of them, when all other attractions above it: and for the honour of our fail, probably for the reason, that by nature be it remembered, history this means we see the application of abounds with instances of great and the science before we are disheartened wealthy men, who have been as wise by its difficulties, and learn the prac-and as good as they were great and tical and experimental part before the affluent; and not an assize passes theoretical. without furnishing melancholy proofs I would hope, therefore, that so of depravity of morals among the
lower classes of society. The station | calamities, look forward with confiof life which appears most likely to dence to those regions of happiness, make men virtuous and happy lies" where the wicked cease from troubetween the two extremes of abun-bling, and the weary are at rest.' dant prosperity and indigent adver- In the enjoyment of the prospect of sity; where the mind is at ease from this rest, the Christian is happy. To all apprehensions of absolute want, and expect a total emancipation from free to instigate the man to act his part anxiety and care, in any station of justly in society; yet, where he is life, would be illusory and vain; it not endowed with such an indepen- would so limit our ideas to the things dence, but that he knows the full of this world, as to unfit us for weight of the lower orders of society making a due preparation for the in the grand scale of being;—where world to come. The mind would be his circumstances are not so straitened estranged from the performance of its as to render him liable to be biassed by proper functions, by the idea of meetany perverse proud neighbour; nor ing with permanent happiness on this does he possess such an independence side of the grave. No station can be in point of property, as to make him so exalted, as to be wholly free from unmindful of what he owes to the crosses and disappointments; nor any meanest of his fellow-men. If such so depressed, but that a ray of coma man is long unhappy, it must be fort will sometimes break through the the fault of his own disposition. The gloom, and give the mind tranquillity affluent man, by his abundance, the and ease. Guilt alone can give dupride of family, and honours and titles rable misery in that case, all the of distinction, may gradually be lulled riches of the world are insufficient to into a lethargy that will make him silence a self-accusing conscience. heedless of his duty to society, and Hence with virtue at heart, with unworthy of the name he bears. But" peace with God through our Lord if, amidst all these tempting lures to Jesus Christ," as much happiness as forgetfulness, he has magnanimity can reasonably be expected on earth sufficient to preserve his virtue, great may be the lot of any man, in one and glorious will be his career through station as well as another. life, his exit will be illustrious, and his memory held sacred. The needy man, if the lowliness of his station teaches him a becoming humility, while a consciousness of internal rectitude prevents his degenerating into mean servility; if, while struggling can be given for so great a faith, as with oppression, he maintains his that of believing in the existence of probity untainted, and performs his the GLORIOUS BEING OF GOD, who is duty towards God, and in a manner suitable to the rational intellects with which he is endowed, and the divine tenets inculcated by the Saviour, though the finger of scorn be pointed at him, and the pride and insolence of others prevent his emerging from obscurity in this world, yet he may, though overwhelmed with temporal
No. VIII. "WHAT reasons and demonstrations
invisible to human sense?"
THE SYRIAN CAPTAIN.
"Go wash in Jordan's limpid stream,"
Of old the holy prophet said,
And health and purity they spread."
Rivers of oil, or wine poured forth,
Shall fail to wash the soul from sin; Rich sacrifice is nothing worth,
To heal the wound the heart within. The Captain of our hope and faith
Obeyed the Father's will, and died; He died an ignominious death,
Was persecuted, crucified!
Have you an apprentice? Then keep a strict watch over his morals; for the vicious are ever seeking as victims the virtuous. The united efforts of the base and dissipated are systematically directed to cause the virtuous to fall. You are well aware that you have an unquestionable right to require from him all he can possibly accomplish, consistent with virtuous principles, to advance your interests and happiness; but if you neglect to guard his morals, and permit him to "run with the multitude to do evil," you must expect to be disappointed; nor must you be surprised, if through your criminal neg
IF you ever reflect upon the state of society, you must acknowledge lect, he acquire habits, and become that vice of every kind abounds: confirmed in principles, which will
His followers now His cross must bear,
and will you, whose indispensable
Masters, give unto your servants that which is just and equal, knowing that ye also have a Master in heaven."-Col. iv. 1.
be ruinous to himself, and injurious to
make laws for the government of his creatures; for He who had made all things, had authority over, and a just claim upon all; and accordingly we find that when He had made man, He placed him under a law, the tenor of which was, "Do this, and thou shalt live." Man's obedience to this law was to constitute his right and title to the blessings which he enjoyed; and his failing to obey the law, the ground of his forfeiture of those blessings, and the infliction, for aught he then knew, of immediate death. Thus then that man might want no motive to invite those which sprang from love, the powerful him to obedience, there was superadded to influence of fear-a fear of losing present blessings and incurring the divine displeacare to have nothing to do with "the sure; and farther, that he might be left "without excuse if he failed, he was endowed works and the workers of darkness.' with a capacity in every respect commensuTell them that their path "is the rate to the service required of him, and the way to hell, going down to the cham-end for which he was created. But that bers of death." At home and abroad, mankind are now in a condition differing in in the shop and the parlour, fearlessly that in which he existed in his primeval state, many great and important particulars from "denounce every modification of sin, is a proposition capable of the clearest and most and encourage the virtuous" to in-satisfactory demonstration; for were we to creased activity in doing good. Let take the best specimen of human nature, your example, your influence, your judge of the excellency of his species, as the and erect it as the standard by which to heart, your hand, be all energetically work of an infinitely wise and holy Being, employed in the cause of moral re-most certain is it that his creation would reform. "Curse ye Meroz," said the flect but little glory to his Maker, but would rather argue an imperfection, where all is perangel of the Lord, curse ye bitterly the inhabitants thereof." What for? from righteousness and so ill adapted to anfect, in creating a creature so far removed "Because they came not to the help swer the end for which even by the testimony of the Lord, to the help of the Lord of reason, it is evident, he was created. True, indeed, it is that, if man be viewed against the mighty." It is an awful fact that our obliga-still retains a part of his original dignity, only in the light of an intellectual being, he tions to do good are increased by the though in this sense also he has received a privileges which we enjoy; for "where sad wound by the fall of his nature. much is given, much will be required. this is not the only light in which his chaBe not deceived" then, racter is to be judged; for he is a moral as "for God well as an intellectual being; and whilst in is not mocked: whatsoever a man the latter sense he is far removed above the soweth, that shall he also reap." brutes that perish, inasmuch as they have
THE ORIGINAL STATE OF MAN BRIEFLY
THE chief end for which man was created was to serve and glorify his Creator. This was a condition of his existence, and necessarily resulted from the relationship which he sustained to the divine Being, who, in addition to the life which had been given, had surrounded that life with all that was capable of rendering it a happy and a blessed one. No one can question the divine right