Genesis 1:1
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
Sermons
A Question for AtheistsJ. B. Clark.Genesis 1:1
A Revelation of God and of NaturePulpit AnalystGenesis 1:1
Beginning is a Word Familiarly on Our LipsJ.F. Montgomery Genesis 1:1
Chance Cannot Explain Order in CreationArchbishop Tillotson.Genesis 1:1
Chance not CreativeGenesis 1:1
CreationC. P. Eden, M. A.Genesis 1:1
CreationA. Monod, D. D.Genesis 1:1
CreationA. H. Strong, D. D.Genesis 1:1
CreationJ. Parker, D. D.Genesis 1:1
CreationJames G. Murphy, LL. D.Genesis 1:1
CreationW. S. Smith, B. D.Genesis 1:1
Creation a Comforting ThoughtGenesis 1:1
Creation's BirthJ. S. Withington.Genesis 1:1
DesignWm. Adamson.Genesis 1:1
Genesis of the UniverseG. D. Boardman.Genesis 1:1
God FirstF. J. Falding, D. D.Genesis 1:1
God the Author of All ThingsGenesis 1:1
God the Maker of Heaven and EarthT. T. Shore, M. A.Genesis 1:1
Import of Faith in a CreatorCanon Liddon.Genesis 1:1
Love in the Fact of CreationDean Alford.Genesis 1:1
Man's Limited Knowledge of NatureT. Carlyle.Genesis 1:1
Moses and DarwinD. B. James.Genesis 1:1
On BeginningsJ. E. Gibberd.Genesis 1:1
On the Existence and Character of GodPreb. Row, M. A.Genesis 1:1
Order no Proof of EvolutionW. M. Taylor, D. D.Genesis 1:1
PantheismA. H. Strong, D. D.Genesis 1:1
Seeking the True GodE. Stock.Genesis 1:1
The Birth of the World Also the Birth of TimeJ. P. Lange, D. D.Genesis 1:1
The Christian Doctrine of CreationD. Greig, M. A.Genesis 1:1
The CreationR. S. Candlish, D. D.Genesis 1:1
The CreationStopford A. Brooke, M. A.Genesis 1:1
The CreationL. D. Bevan, LL. B.Genesis 1:1
The CreationD. C. Hughes, M. A.Genesis 1:1
The Creation and Revelation of Life from GodJ. P. Lange, D. D.Genesis 1:1
The Creation as a Revelation of GodJ. P. Lange, D. D.Genesis 1:1
The Creative Laws and the Scripture RevelationS. Kellogg, D. D.Genesis 1:1
The Creator and His WorkJ. S. Exell, M. A.Genesis 1:1
The Creator and the CreationJ. Vaughan, M. A.Genesis 1:1
The End of God in CreationW. C. Wisner.Genesis 1:1
The Folly of AtheismGenesis 1:1
The Outline of CreationJ. P. Lange, D. D.Genesis 1:1
The Theology of CreationJ. Parker, D. D.Genesis 1:1
The Word Earth as Used in ScriptureProf. Gaussen.Genesis 1:1
The Work of God and the Work of ManJ. P. Lange, D. D.Genesis 1:1
The World According to its Various FormsJ. P. Lange, D. D.Genesis 1:1
What We Learn Here About GodJ. White.Genesis 1:1
A True and Firm FoundationR.A. Redford Genesis 1:1-5
Genesis 1:1-5. A true and firm foundation of revelation and faith must be laid in a Divine doctrine of "Genesis," the beginnings out of which have come both the world of nature and the world of grace. In this book we are taught what is the order by which all things must be tried. Coming forth from Elohim, from the Infinite Personality; flowing in his appointed course. The genesis of heaven and earth becomes the genesis of the human family. Out of the natural chaos is brought forth the Eden of rest and beauty. Out of the moral waste of a fallen humanity is formed, by the gracious work of a Divine Spirit, through a covenant of infinite wisdom and loves a seed of redeemed and sanctified human beings, a family of God. The genesis of the material creation leads on to the genesis of the invisible creation. The lower is the type and symbol of the higher. The first day is the true beginning of days. See what is placed by the sacred writer between that evening and morning.

I. THE COMING FORTH OF THE EVERLASTING, UNSEARCHABLE SECRET OF THE DIVINE NATURE INTO MANIFESTATION. "God created." The word employed denotes more than the bare summoning of existence out of nothingness. The analogy of human workmanship ("cutting," "carving," "framing") suggests the relation between creation and the God of creation. The heaven and the earth reflect their Maker. Works embody the mind, the spirit, the will, the nature of the workman. Although the name Elohim, in the plural form, cannot be taken as an equivalent of the Trinity, it points to the great fundamental fact of all revelation, the Divine Unity coming forth out of the infinite solitude of eternity, and declaring, in the manifold revelations of the visible and invisible worlds, all that the creature can know of his fathomless mystery.

II. HERE IS A GLIMPSE INTO GOD'S ORDER AND METHOD. "In the beginning," the immeasurable fullness of creative power and goodness. Formless void, darkness on the face of the deeps apparent confusion and emptiness, within a limited sphere, the earth; at a certain epoch, in preparation for an appointed future. Chaos is not the first beginning of things; it is a stage in their history. The evening of the first day preceded the morning in the recorded annals of the earth. That evening was itself a veiling of the light. Science itself leads back the thoughts from all chaotic periods to previous developments of power. Order precedes disorder. Disorder is itself permitted only as a temporary state. It is itself part of the genesis of that which shall be ultimately "very good."

III. THE GREAT VITAL FACT OF THE WORLD'S ORDER IS THE INTIMATE UNION BETWEEN THE SPIRIT OF GOD AND THAT WHICH IS COVERED WITH DARKNESS UNTIL HE MAKES IT LIGHT. The moving of the Spirit upon the face of the waters represents the brooding, cherishing, vitalizing presence of God in his creatures, over them, around them, at once the source and protection of their life. "Breath;" "wind," the word literally means, perhaps as a symbol at once of life, or living energy, and freedom, and with an immediate reference to the creative word, which is henceforth the breath of God in the world. Surely no candid mind can fail to feel the force of such a witness in the opening sentences of revelation to the triune God.

IV. TO US THE BEGINNING OF ALL THINGS IS LIGHT. The word of God "commands the light to shine out of darkness." "God said, Let there be light," or, Let light be. The going forth of God's word upon the universe very well represents the twofold fact,

(1) that it is the outcome of his will and nature; and

(2) that it is his language - the expression of himself.

Hence all through this Mosaic cosmogony God is represented as speaking to creation, that we may understand that he speaks in creation, as he is also said to look at that which comes forth from himself to behold it, to approve it, to name it, to appoint its order and use. Such intimate blending of the personal with the impersonal is the teaching of Scripture as distinguished from all mere human wisdom. God is in creation and yet above it. Man is thus invited to seek the personal presence as that which is higher than nature, which his own personal life requires, that it may not be oppressed with nature's greatness, that it may be light, and not darkness. There is darkness in creation, darkness in the deep waters of the world's history, darkness in the human soul itself, until God speaks and man hears. Light is not, physically, the first thing created; but it is the first fact of the Divine days - that is, the beginning of the new order. For what we have to do with, is not the. infinite, secret of creation, but the "manifestation of the visible world God manifest. The first day m the history of the earth, as man can read it, must be the day when God removes the covering of darkness and says, Let there be light." The veil uplifted is itself a commencement. God said that it was good. His own appointment confirmed the abiding distinction between light and darkness, between day and night; in other words, the unfolding, progressive interchange of work and rest, of revelation and concealment, the true beginning of the world's week of labor, which leads on to the everlasting sabbath. How appropriately this first day of the week of creation stands at the threshold of God's word of grace! The light which he makes to shine in our hearts, which divides our existence into the true order, the good and the evil separated from one another, which commences our life; and the Spirit is the light of, his own word, the light which shines from the face of him who was "the Word,' "in the beginning with God," "without whom nothing was made that was made." - R.







In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
In considering the subject of creation we see, first of all, that a distinction must be drawn between what I would call primary and secondary creation. Primary creation is creation proper. It is that grand act whereby Almighty God in the beginning called into being the finite world. Secondary creation, on the other hand, belongs to the sphere of Providence, or to the sphere of the history of the finite world. If we look at the history of the finite world, we see that during its course a vast series of beings have been called into existence. All the generations of mankind have come into existence during ages gone by. In like manner all the countless hosts of living creatures, the animals and plants that inhabit the world. Nor is this all. Men of science now tell us, that even the earth itself, the sun, the moon, and the planets, have come into existence during the history of the world. There was a time in the history of the finite world when there was neither sun, nor moon, nor earth, when the matter of which all these bodies are composed was diffused in a previous state. They have, therefore, like ourselves, received their existence during the history of the world. Now, the origination or bringing into existence of all these things I call a creation. Creation is that which is the work of an intelligent being. It is the giving of existence, by an intelligent being, to that which had previously none. And since all these things have received existence, and have received it at the hand of God, their origination is a creation.

I. In regard to SECONDARY CREATION, the great difficulty is this — If you will think over what I have been saying to you about it, you will see that the truth of my view all depends upon this, that the laws of nature alone and unaided are not sufficient to govern the course of nature. The view which I have given requires us to suppose that, in addition to the laws of nature, there is needed the Divine Intelligence to combine and direct them. In a word, we must suppose that the Divine Intelligence never leaves nature, but continually guides and directs its course to those great ends and purposes which God has in view. Now here it is that the difficulty comes in. It is held, by a large class of reasoners, that the laws of nature alone and unaided are perfectly sufficient for the purpose indicated. But is this view true? I think not. In fact there are many ways in which I could show its inadequacy were this the place to discuss the question. I shall not attempt any such discussion, but shall content myself with simply pointing out one fact which makes it impossible; I mean the fact that the course of nature is a history. If the course of nature were governed solely by the laws of nature, it must, as a necessary consequence, flow in grooves or cycles. But, in point of fact, it does neither. If we look at the course of nature, we see that it is a varied and ever-varying stream. From the beginning of the world up to the present moment, no two events, and no two objects, however similar, have been exactly the same in all respects. The course of nature is a free, orderly, progressive sequence, or series of events flowing towards, and attaining high ends and purposes. The course of nature being thus confessedly a history, what principle is it, which alone can account for it? You may ponder over the matter as much as you please, you may turn it and twist it in every possible way, but you will in the end be obliged to confess that the only principle sufficient for the purpose, is Intelligence. No other principle but Intelligence can account for the order of a free, varied, and progressive whole such as the course of nature actually is. Why is it that the conviction of a never-ceasing Providence in the affairs of the world is written in such living characters on the hearts of all men? It is from the perception that the course of nature is a history, and the inference which is instantaneously drawn, that it must be ordered by intelligence. The result then is, that the course of nature cannot be conceived by us as possible apart from the Divine Intelligence. We must suppose that the Divine Intelligence presided over it in the beginning and has ever since continuously guided its course. Now what follows from this? It follows that the first chapter of Genesis is literally true, in the sense in which the ordinary English reader understands it. It is still literally true that God created the sun, the moon, the sea, the dry land, the various species of plants and animals. For God prepared the conditions under which all these things came into existence. He guided the course of nature so that it should aid or abut in their production. They are, therefore, His creations; and owe their existence to His creative fiat. I wish I could stay to point out the many striking consequences which flow from this view — the air of grandeur and living interest it imparts to nature, the Divine light it sheds into every corner and crevice of it. But I must content myself with merely indicating one point, viz., how this view satisfies all our religious aspirations. It brings us very near to God. It brings God all round us and within us. But what comes home especially to the religious mind is the assurance which this view gives us, that we, as individuals, owe our existence not to dead and unintelligent laws, but to the will and purpose of the living God. Our individual existence was prepared and intended by God. We are His creation.

II. We have next to consider PRIMARY CREATION, which is far more difficult. Primary creation, as I have said, is that grand act whereby God called into being the finite world. It differs from secondary creation in these two respects: first, that there were no pre-existent materials out of which the finite world was formed, and secondly, in that the process whereby it was made was not one of natural law, but a process of intelligence. The difficulties which have been raised in modern times against this cardinal doctrine have been very great, and in dealing with them I do not well know how to make myself intelligible to some of you. One of the most perplexing of these difficulties is the view which regards creation as a breach of the law of continuity. The law of continuity obliges us to suppose that each state of the material world was preceded by a previous state. Hence, according to this law, it is impossible that the material world could ever have had a beginning. For the law compels us to add on to each state of things, a previous state, without ever coming to a stop. If we do stop short we break the law. And hence those who take this view would exclude creation, as being nothing else but a stopping short, and consequent breaking of the law. Creation, they say, is the doctrine that there is an absolutely first link in this grand chain, and if we are to adhere to the law of continuity we must exclude it. But this whole view of the matter is radically wrong. In supposing creation to be the first link in the chain of continuity, we necessarily suppose that, like all the other links, it took place in time. There was a time before, and a time after it. But if you will think over the matter, you will see that this could not be; for time only came into existence when the creative process was completed. In fact, space and time, the laws of nature, and the law of continuity, are all relations of the finite world; and they could not possibly have any existence till. the finite world itself existed, that is, till the creative act was completed. Hence, if we would grasp in thought the creative act, we must transcend the law of continuity; we must transcend all the laws of nature; we must transcend and forget even space and time. If we would understand aright the creative act, we must view the finite world solely in relation 'to the Divine Intelligence, of which it is the product. The great question in regard to primary creation is, Is it conceivable by us? There is a sect of people called agnostics, who say that it is utterly inconceivable, that no intelligible meaning can be attached to the word. They have wrongly compared creation to a process of natural law, and finding no analogy in this comparison, they have rashly set it down as unthinkable by us. But I have shown you that creation is not a process of natural law; I have shown you that it transcends natural law; I have shown you that it is purely a process of intelligence. Regarded in this point of view, I will now show you that it is intelligible to us, not, perhaps, perfectly intelligible, but still so much so, as to afford us a very tangible notion. The Bible conception of creation is simply this. The finite world as a whole, and in each one of its details, was formed as an image or idea in the Divine Intelligence, and in and by that act of formation it obtained objective or substantial reality. God had not, like us, to seek for paper whereon to describe His plan, nor for materials wherein to embody it. By His absolute power, the image of the world formed in the Divine Intelligence became the actual, substantial, external world. It obtained, as we say, objective reality. Thus the finite world was not a creation out of nothing, neither was it the fall of the finite out of the infinite, nor a necessary evolution out of the Divine Essence, it was the objectified product of the Divine Intelligence. It may, however, be said that this goes a very little way in making the act of creation conceivable to us, for we have no experience of the immediate and unconditioned externalization of a mere mental idea, and we cannot imagine how it could be possible. I admit that we have not the experience indicated. And yet, I would ask you, which is the most marvellous point in the whole process — the act by which the image of the finite world was constituted in the Divine Intelligence, or the act by which it obtained objective reality? Plainly it is the former. It is far more marvellous that the finite world in its first beginning, and in its whole subsequent development, should be imaged forth in the Divine Intelligence, than that this image should crystallize into concrete objective existence. Thus the very point of creation which is the most difficult is made conceivable to us by being reflected in the processes of our own minds. We can create to the extent of forming the mental image. It is only in the externalization of our idea that we are hemmed in and hampered by conditions. I maintain, therefore, that the Bible doctrine, whether we believe it or not, is conceivable by us. We have, first of all, a clear notion of the human intelligence, which is infinite and absolute in one of its aspects; this gives us a notion, inadequate no doubt, but still a tangible notion of the Divine Intelligence which is infinite and absolute in every aspect. Then we have a clear notion of the origination or creation of mental images or plans of things by the human intelligence; this enables us to understand how the plan or pattern of the finite world originated in the Divine Intelligence. The last point, viz., the externalization of the Divine idea, is the most difficult. But though a hard one to you and me, you see it did not present the same elements of difficulty to those great men who had made the powers and processes of intelligence their peculiar study. But I will say more for the Bible doctrine. It is the only philosophical account of the finite world that does not throw human knowledge into irretrievable confusion. The bearing of the question is simply this. If we view the finite world apart from intelligence, the moment we begin to reason on it, we fall into contradiction and absurdity. The consequence of this is, that we land ourselves first of all in agnosticism, and then in utter scepticism; disbelieving in God, in the moral world, nay, even in the most assured results of physical science. Hence, if we would save human knowledge, the finite world must be viewed in relation to intelligence; and the whole question lies between the Bible and a doctrine such as that of Fichte. Is the finite world the product of our intelligence? or is it the product of the Divine Intelligence? We cannot hesitate between the two. Indeed the logic of facts has already decided for us.

(D. Greig, M. A.)

When man looks out from himself upon the wonderful home in which he is placed, upon the various orders of living things around him, upon the solid earth which he treads, upon the heavens into which he gazes, with such ever-varying impressions, by day and by night; when he surveys the mechanism of his own bodily frame; when he turns his thought, as he can turn it, in upon itself, and takes to pieces by subtle analysis the beautiful instrument which places him in conscious relation to the universe around him; his first and last anxiety is to account for the existence of all that thus interests him; he must answer the question, How and why did this vast system of being come to be? Science may unveil in nature regular modes of working, and name their laws. But the great question still awaits her — the problem of the origin of the universe. This question is answered by the first verse in the Bible: "In the beginning God created," etc. And that answer is accepted by every believer in the Christian Creed: "I believe in one God," etc.

I. WHAT IS MEANT BY CREATION? The giving being to that which before was not. Creation is a mystery eminently satisfactory to reason, but strictly beyond it. We men can do much in the way of modifying existing matter, but we cannot create the minutest particle of it. That God summoned it into being is a truth which we believe on God's authority, but which we can never verify.

II. BELIEF IN THE CREATION OF THE UNIVERSE OUT OF NOTHING IS THE ONLY ACCOUNT OF ITS ORIGIN WHICH IS COMPATIBLE WITH BELIEF IN A PERSONAL AND MORAL GOD.

1. Men have conceived of the relation between the universe and a higher power in four different ways. Either God is a creation of the world, that is to say, of the thinking part of it; or God and the world are really identical; or God and the world, although distinct, are co-existent; or God has created the world out of nothing.(1) If God is a product of human thought, it follows that the universe is self-existent, and that it alone exists. A purely subjective deity is in truth no deity at all.(2) If God and the world are two names for the same thing, though the name of God be retained, the reality has vanished as truly as in the blankest atheism. For such a deity is neither personal nor moral. Murder and adultery become manifestations of the Infinite One as truly and in the same sense as benevolence or veracity.(3) If, to avoid this revolting blasphemy, we suppose God and the world to be distinct, yet eternally co-existent, do we thereby secure in human thought a place for a moral and personal God? Surely not. God has ceased to be if we are right in imagining that there never was a time when something else did not exist independently of Him.(4) It is necessary, then, to believe in the creation out of nothing, if we are to believe also in God's self-existent, personal, moral life.

2. Again, belief in the creation of the universe by God out of nothing naturally leads to belief in God's continuous providence; and providence, in turn, considering the depth of man's moral misery, suggests redemption. If love or goodness was the true motive for creation, it implies God's continuous interest in created life.

3. Belief in creation, indeed, must govern the whole religious thought of a consistent believer. It answers many a priori difficulties as to the existence of miracle, since the one supreme inexplicable miracle, compared with which all others are insignificant, is already admitted.

4. Once more, belief in creation is of high moral value. It keeps a man in his right place. "It is He that hath made us, and not we ourselves." At first sight, man is insignificant when confronted with external nature. Yet we know that this is not so. The heavens and the earth will pass away. But the soul will still remain, face to face with God.

(Canon Liddon.)

I. THE WHOLE TRINITY, each in His separate office, though all in unity, addressed themselves to the work of creation.

1. The Holy Spirit brooded over the watery chaos.

2. The Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, was that power, or "Arm of the Lord," by which the whole work was executed. "In the beginning was the Word."

3. The Father's mind willed all, planned all, and did all.

II. God created ONLY "the heaven and the earth." He provided a heaven, but He did not provide a hell. That was provided, not for our world at all, but for the devil and his angels.

III. If we ask WHY God created this universe of ours, three purposes suggest themselves.

1. It was the expression and out-going of His wisdom, power, and love.

2. It was for the sake of His noblest work, His creature, man.

3. The heaven and the earth were meant to be the scene of the exhibition of His own dear Son. Remember, that marvellously grand as it was, that first creation was only a type and earnest of a better.

(J. Vaughan, M. A.)

I. THEN ATHEISM IS A FOLLY. Atheism is proved absurd —

1. By the history of the creation of the world. It would be impossible for a narrative to be clearer, more simple, or more divinely authenticated than this of the creation. The very existence of things around us is indisputable evidence of its reality.

2. By the existence of the beautiful world around us. The world standing up around us in all its grandeur — adaptation — evidence of design — harmony — is a most emphatic assertion of the Being of God. Every flower is a denial of atheism. Every star is vocal with Deity.

3. By the moral convictions of humanity. There is probably not an intelligent man in the wide universe, who does not believe in, and pay homage to, some deity or other.

II. THEN PANTHEISM IS AN ABSURDITY. We are informed by these verses that the world was a creation, and not a spontaneous, or natural emanation from a mysterious something only known in the vocabulary of a sceptical philosophy. Thus the world must have had a personal Creator, distinct and separate from itself.

III. THEN MATTER IS NOT ETERNAL. "In the beginning." Thus it is evident that matter had a commencement. It was created by Divine power. It had a birthday.

IV. THEN THE WORLD WAS NOT THE RESULT OF A FORTUITOUS COMBINATION OF ATOMS. "In the beginning God created." Thus the world was a creation. There was the exercise of supreme intelligence. There was the expression in symbol of great thoughts, and also of Divine sympathies.

V. THEN CREATION IS THE OUTCOME OF SUPERNATURAL POWER. "In the beginning God created." There must of necessity ever be much of mystery connected with this subject. Man was not present to witness the creation, and God has only given us a brief and dogmatic account of it. God is mystery. The world is a mystery. But there is far less mystery in the Mosaic account of the creation than in any other, as it is the most natural, the most likely, and truly the most scientific, as it gives us an adequate cause for the effect. The re-creation of the soul is the best explanation of the creation of the universe, and in fact of all the other mysteries of God.

(J. S. Exell, M. A.)

Man naturally asks for some account of the world in which he lives. Was the world always in existence? If not, how did it begin to be? Did the sun make itself? These are not presumptuous questions. We have a right to ask them — the right which arises from our intelligence. The steam engine did not make itself; did the sun? In the text we find an answer to all our questions.

I. THE ANSWER IS SIMPLE. There is no attempt at learned analysis or elaborate exposition. A child may understand the answer. It is direct, positive, complete. Could it have been more simple? Try any other form of words, and see if a purer simplicity be possible. Observe the value of simplicity when regarded as bearing upon the grandest events. The question is not who made a house, but who made a world, and not who made one world, but who made all worlds; and to this question the answer is, God made them. There is great risk in returning a simple answer to a profound inquiry, because when simplicity is not the last result of knowledge, it is mere imbecility.

II. THE ANSWER IS SUBLIME. God! God created!

1. Sublime because far reaching in point of time: in the beginning. Science would have attempted a fact, religion has given a truth. If any inquirer can fix a date, he is not forbidden to do so. Dates are for children.

2. Sublime because connecting the material with the spiritual. There is, then, something more than dust in the universe. Every atom bears a superscription. The wind is the breath of God. The thunder is a note from the music of his speech.

3. Sublime, because revealing, as nothing else could have done, the power and wisdom of the Most High.

III. THE ANSWER IS SUFFICIENT. It might have been both simple and sublime, and yet not have reached the point of adequacy. Draw a straight line, and you may describe it as simple, yet who would think of calling it sublime? We must have simplicity which reaches the point of sublimity, and sublimity which sufficiently covers every demand of the case. The sufficiency of the answer is manifest: Time is a drop of eternity; nature is the handiwork of God; matter is the creation of mind; God is over all, blessed for evermore. This is enough. In proportion as we exclude God from the operation, we increase difficulty. Atheism never simplifies. Negation works in darkness. The answer of the text to the problem of creation is simple, sublime, and sufficient, in relation —

1. To the inductions of geology.

2. To the theory of evolution.Practical inferences:

1. If God created all things, then all things are under His government.

2. Then the earth may be studied religiously.

3. Then it is reasonable that He should take an interest in nature.

(J. Parker, D. D.)

1. His being.

2. His eternity.

3. His omnipotence.

4. His absolute freedom.

5. His infinite wisdom.

6. His essential goodness.

(J. White.)

Pulpit Analyst.
I. A REVELATION OF GOD.

1. His name: names have meaning.

2. His nature: spirituality, personality.

3. His mode of existence: manifold unity.

II. A REVELATION OF NATURE.

1. Matter not eternal.

2. The antiquity of the earth.

3. The order of creation.

(Pulpit Analyst.)

I. WHAT IS CREATION? Creation is a work of free condescension on the part of God. There was a time when it was not, and God willed that it should be. It was by Him called into existence out of nothing. It is not only not God, but it is not Divine — partakes in no way of His essence, nor (except in one, its spiritual department, where He has specially willed it) of His nature; has in itself no principle of permanence, cannot uphold itself, but depends altogether for its being, and well being, on the good pleasure of Him, whose Divine love created and upholds it. The world is a standing proof of God's condescension — that He lowers Himself to behold the things which are in heaven and in earth, which He needeth not. Creation, viewed in its true light, is as really a proof of the self-forgetting, self-humbling love of our God, as redemption; for in it He left His glory which He had, the Father with the Son, and the Holy Spirit with both, before the worlds began, and descended to converse with and move among the works of His own hands; to launch the planets on their courses through space, and uphold in them all things living by His ever-abiding Spirit.

II. WHY IS CREATION? May we presume to ask, What moved Him who was perfect in Himself, who needed nothing beyond Himself, whose character of love was fulfilled in the unity of the Three Persons in the God-head — what moved Him to lower Himself to the creation and upholding of matter, and of life organized in matter? We have already attributed the act to free condescending love; but what love — love for whom? Here again Scripture gives us an answer. "The Father loveth the Son, and hath given all things into His hand." "By Him (the Son) were all things created, that are in heaven and that are in earth, visible and invisible — all things were created by Him and for Him." I hesitate not then in saying that all creation was the result of the love of the Father for the Son; the result of His Almighty will to carry forward, and to glorify, His Divine character of love, by the glorification of His beloved and only-begotten Son. This world is Christ's world — made by and made for Christ — made as the theatre whereon, to all created beings, and even to the Father Himself, was to be shown forth the glorious self-denying love of the Son of God. Thus the world is to the Christian a fact in the very path and process of his faith, and hope, and love. Thus creation is to him part of redemption; the first free act of love of his God, which provided for his being called into existence, as the next free act of love provided for his being called to be a partaker of the Divine nature.

(Dean Alford.)

I. GOD. No attempt made to prepare mind of reader for idea of God; as though every human being had this naturally; and so they all have.

II. CREATED. God made world out of nothing; then He must have absolute power over it and all in it. Nothing can hurt those whom God loves, and protects. Events of world are still in His hands. All must work for Him.

III. COURSE AND PROGRESS OF CREATION'S WORK.

1. Gradual, in measured stages, deliberate. But, observe, never lingering or halting; no rest until complete. Each day has its work; and each day's work, done for God, and as God appoints, has its reward. Result may not always be seen; as seed is not seen unfolding beneath ground, yet as truly growing there as when it shoots up green in face of day. So in a good man's life. He looks onward.

2. Orderly.

(C. P. Eden, M. A.)

The language of man follows things and imitates them; the Word of God precedes and creates them. Man speaks because things are; but these are because God hath spoken. Let Him speak again, and things will revert together with man who speaks of them, to nothing. Let us be content to perceive in creation a character which belongs only to God, and which distinguishes His work from that of His creatures. The human mind works only with the materials with which God supplies it; it observes, imitates, combines, but does not create. The best painter in the world, composing the most beautiful picture that ever proceeded from the hand of man, creates nothing: neither the canvas, nor the colours, nor the brushes, nor his own hands, nor even the conception of his work, since that conception is the fruit of his genius, which he has not given unto himself. Trace to the origin of each of the several things which have combined to form this picture, and you will find that all the channels from which they came, converge towards, and meet in the Creator, who is God. In thus showing us from its first page that the visible world has had such a wonderful beginning, the Bible informs us that it is also as a Creator that God saves souls. He not only develops the natural dispositions of our hearts, but creates in them new ones, "For we are labourers together with God"; but labourers working like the painter, with what God has given to us. We hear, read, seek, believe, pray, but even these come from God. "For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure"; and if we seek the principle of our salvation we shall find that we owe all to God from the beginning, and from the beginning of the beginning. "For we are His workmanship created in Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them." "You have been taught in Christ," writes St. Paul to the Ephesians, "to put off the old man, to be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and to put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness." "In Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature." Thus speaks the New Testament. The Old uses the same language. Not only does David, rising from his fall, pray in these words by the Spirit: "Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me" (Psalm 51:12); but all the Lord's dealings towards the people of Israel, that type of the future Church, are compared by Isaiah to a creation — "I am the Lord, your Holy One, the Creator of Israel, your King" (Isaiah 43:15). If He alternately deals out to them good and bad fortune — He creates. "I am the Lord, and there is none else. I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I, the Lord, do all these things" (Isaiah 45:6, 7). If He tries them for a time by chastising them through the hands of their enemies, He creates: "Behold, I have created the smith that bloweth the coals in the fire, and that bringeth forth an instrument of destruction for his work" (Isaiah 54:16). If He raises up prophets to them, He creates: "I create the fruit of the lips; Peace, peace, to him that is far off, and to him that is near" (Isaiah 57:19); and if ultimately He give to that people, after many vicissitudes, happier days and an eternal rest, He will create: "For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: but be ye glad and rejoice forever in that which I create; for, behold, I create Jerusalem a rejoicing" (Isaiah 65:17, 18). The creation of the world affords us a new lesson as to the manner in which God acts in the dispensation of grace. There again, all that God makes is good, and very good; what is evil proceeds from another source. For all that is good and holy, let us ascribe the glory to God; for what is evil let us accuse ourselves. This doctrine, too, is necessary in order that you should not make a false application of what you have just heard respecting the sovereignty of God. He acts as Creator, we should say in things which belong to His government, but He only uses this sovereign power for good; He only gives birth to good thoughts, holy desires and dispositions, consistent with salvation. God creates, but how does He create? At first view we only see here the sovereign Lord, alone at first in His eternity, alone afterwards in the work of creation. But a more deliberate contemplation leads us to discern in this singleness a certain mysterious union of persons previously hidden in the depths of the Divine nature, and displaying itself at the creation, as it was to be manifested at a later period in the redemption of our race. And have you the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost? The Three unite in the creation of the world; they unite in the redemption of man; are they also united within you? Are you born of the Father, and become His children? Are you washed in the blood, of the Son, and become members of His body? Are you baptized with the Spirit, and become His temples? Ponder upon these things; for it is not a vain thing for you, because it is your life. Finally, God creates, but for what purpose? does He only wish to spread before you an enchanting exhibition? No, He has nobler designs. The Lord has created all things for His glory, and His first object is to render visible the invisible things hidden within Himself, by giving them a body, and, if one may so speak, by exhibiting them in the form of flesh.

(A. Monod, D. D.)

How often might a man, after he had jumbled a set of letters in a bag, fling them upon the ground before they would fall into an exact poem, yea, or so much as make a good discourse in prose! And may not a little book be as easily made by chance as this great volume of the world? How long might a man be in sprinkling colours upon a canvas with a careless hand before they could happen to make the exact picture of a man? And is a man easier made by chance than his picture? How long might twenty thousand blind men, which should be sent out from the several remote parts of England, wander up and down before they would all meet in Salisbury Plains, and fall into rank and file in the exact order of an army? And yet this is much more easy to be imagined than how the innumerable blind parts of matter should rendezvous themselves into a world.

(Archbishop Tillotson.)

Athanasius Kircher, the celebrated German astronomer, had an acquaintance whom he much esteemed, but who was unfortunately infected by atheistical principles, and denied the very existence of a God. Kircher, sincerely desirous to rescue his friend from his mistaken and ruinous opinion, determined to try to convince him of his error upon his own principles of reasoning. He first procured a globe of the heavens, handsomely decorated, and of conspicuous size, and placed it in a situation in his study where it would be immediately observed. He then called upon his friend with an invitation to visit him, which was readily responded to, and on his arrival he was shown into the study. It happened exactly as Kircher had planned. His friend no sooner observed it than he inquired whence it had come, and to whom it belonged. "Shall I tell you, my friend," said Kircher, "that it belongs to no one; that it was never made by anyone, but came here by mere chance?" "That," replied the atheist, "is impossible; you jest." This was Kircher's golden opportunity, and he promptly and wisely availed himself of it. "You will not, with good reason, believe that this small globe which you see before you originated in mere chance, and yet you will contend that those vast heavenly bodies, of which this is but a faint diminutive resemblance, came into existence without either order, design, or a creation!" His friend was first confounded, then convinced, and, ultimately abandoning all his former scepticisms, he gladly united with all who reverence and love God in acknowledging the glory and adoring the majesty of the great Creator of the heavens and earth and all their host.

His (Professor Huxley's) conclusion is an hypothesis evolved from an hypothesis. To see that this is indeed the case, let us put his argument in syllogistic form. It is as follows: Wherever we have an ascending series of animals with modifications of structure rising one above another, the later forms must have evolved themselves from the earlier. In the case of these fossil horses we have such a series, therefore the theory of evolution is established universally for all organized and animal life. Now, even if we admit his premises, everyone must see that the conclusion is far too sweeping. It ought to have been confined to the horses of which he was treating. But passing that, let us ask where is the proof of the major premise? Indeed, that premise is suppressed altogether, and he nowhere attempts to show that the existence of an ascending series of animals, with modifications of structure ascending, one above another, is an infallible indication that the higher members of the series evolved themselves out of the lower. The existence of a series does not necessarily involve the evolution of the higher members of it from the lower. The steps of a stair rise up one above another, but we cannot reason that therefore the whole staircase has developed itself out of the lowest step. It may be possible to arrange all the different modifications of the steam engine, from its first and crudest form up to its latest and most complete organized structure, in regular gradation; but that would not prove that the last grew out of the first. No doubt in such a case there has been progress — no doubt there has been development too — but it was progress guided and development directed by a presiding and intervening mind. All present experience is against this major premise which Huxley has so quietly taken for granted. It is a pure conjecture. I will go so far as to say that even if he should find in the geologic records all the intervening forms he desires, these will not furnish evidence that the higher members of the series rose out of the lower by a process of evolution. The existence of a graduated series is one thing; the growth of the series out of its lowest member is quite another.

(W. M. Taylor, D. D.)

I. In the first place, THE OBJECT OF THIS INSPIRED COSMOGONY, OR ACCOUNT OF THE WORLD'S ORIGIN, IS NOT SCIENTIFIC BUT RELIGIOUS. Hence it was to be expected, that while nothing contained in it could ever be found really and in the long run to contradict science, the gradual progress of discovery might give occasion for apparent and temporary contradictions.

II. Then again, in the second place, let it be observed that THE ESSENTIAL FACTS IN THIS DIVINE RECORD are, — the recent date assigned to the existence of man on the earth, the previous preparation of the earth for his habitation, the gradual nature of the work, and the distinction and succession of days during its progress.

III. And, finally, in the third place, let it be borne in mind that the sacred narrative of the creation is evidently, in its highest character, MORAL, SPIRITUAL, AND PROPHETICAL. The original relation of man, as a responsible being, to his Maker, is directly taught; his restoration from moral chaos to spiritual beauty is figuratively represented; and as a prophecy, it has an extent of meaning which will be fully unfolded only when "the times of the restitution of all things" (Acts 3:21) have arrived. Conclusion: — The first verse, then, contains a very general announcement; in respect of time, without date, — in respect of space, without limits.

(R. S. Candlish, D. D.)

I. THE ARGUMENT FOUNDED ON THE PRINCIPLE OF CAUSATION. The belief in causation is one of the primary convictions of the human mind. It will be unnecessary for the purposes of this argument to discuss its origin. It is also certain that this conviction is not the result of any conscious process of reasoning. We acquiesce in it because we cannot help doing so. Anyone may satisfy himself that this is the case, by trying whether it is possible for him to believe that any particular phenomenon has come into existence without a cause. One of these primary beliefs is that every phenomenon must owe its existence to a cause adequate to produce it. This proposition therefore constitutes one of the highest rectitudes which is attainable by man, and lies at the foundation of all reasoned truth. Such being the case, it becomes necessary to determine what we mean by the term "cause," not what philosophers mean by it, but what is the idea which the common sense of mankind attaches to it? Unless we are under the bias of some particular theory, we invariably associate the idea of efficiency with that of cause. We may frequently mistake non-causes for causes, but efficiency, i.e., power to produce the effect, is the fundamental idea which underlies the conception of cause in the minds of ordinary men. This being so, the following important consequences follow.

1. Whatever exists in the effect, must exist either actively or potentially in the cause.

2. The cause of one effect may be the effect of some preceding cause.

3. Various things, which philosophers and men of science have designated causes, are not causes, but necessary conditions of the existence of a particular thing. Thus space is the necessary condition of the existence of extended bodies, but is certainly not the cause of their existence. In a similar manner, in the language of the Darwinian theory, the environment of a thing is frequently spoken of as its cause. It may be the necessary condition of the existence of a thing in that particular form, but to designate it its cause is an inaccuracy of thought. The truth is, necessary conditions limit the action of causes, and may direct their activity into this or that channel; but to treat them as causes is absurd, for they neither do, nor can produce anything.

4. Law is not a cause. The reader's attention cannot be too carefully directed to this fact, for, in scientific language, law is habitually used as the equivalent of force, and the greatest confusion of thought has been the result; nay, more, it is frequently personified even by those who refuse to allow that we have any means of knowing that the First Cause of the universe is a personal Being. Thus even scientific men are constantly in the habit of affirming that the laws of nature effect this or that; and that feeble man is unable to resist their overwhelming power. The truth is, that while the forces of nature effect much, the laws of nature can effect nothing. What are the laws of nature? They are merely expressions of the definite order of the occurrence of phenomena. I must now recur to one more point above referred to, as fraught with consequences of extreme importance. I have observed that the very conception of an efficient cause (and an efficient cause is the only one which satisfies the idea of real causation), involves the consequence that it must contain within itself, either actively or potentially, all the effects of which it is the cause; otherwise, such portions of the effects which are not inherent in the cause must be self-produced, which is a self-contradiction, or be produced by the energy of an independent Creator, a conclusion which the theist will readily accept. This being so, all the effects, or in other words, the phenomena, which exist in the universe, must exist either actively or potentially in its first cause, i.e., in God. Now, one of the phenomena of the universe is intelligence. Intelligence therefore must exist in God. Another of its phenomena is the moral nature of man, and the principles of morality founded on the moral law. God therefore must be a moral Being. Another of its phenomena is free agency as it exists in man. The first cause of man (i.e., God) must therefore be a free agent. Another of its phenomena is will, for it exists in man. Volition therefore must exist in God. Another of its phenomena is personality, for it exists in man. Personality therefore must exist in God. Another of its phenomena is that its forces act in accordance with invariable law, from which action the order of the universe springs. Invariable law therefore must be an expression of the Divine will, and the love of order must exist in God. This argument may be pursued to a much greater length; but this will be sufficient to indicate its character.

II. THE ARGUMENT FOUNDED ON THE ORDER OF THE UNIVERSE. This argument proves that its first cause (i.e., God) must be possessed of intelligence. It is one of the instinctive beliefs of our minds, when our rational powers have attained their full development, that whenever we contemplate an orderly arrangement of a complicated character, we instinctively draw the inference that it denotes the presence of intelligence. We feel that this is an inference which we cannot help drawing, for order and intelligence are in our minds mutually correlated. Observe, I make this affirmation under the qualification that we cannot help drawing this inference when our rational powers have attained to their full development. I do so because I maintain that the ideal of human nature and the testimony which its constitution affords to the realities of things, are to be found in the perfect and not in the imperfect man. The opponents of theism dispute the correlation of order and intelligence on two grounds. First, they affirm that the conception is an anthropomorphic one, inapplicable to the works of nature. Secondly, that the production of all the phenomena of the universe by the unintelligent forces of nature, acting in conformity with laws from which they are incapable of varying, is an adequate account of these orderly arrangements. With respect to the tact of these objections to the validity of our argument, I answer — First, that our belief in this correlation between order and intelligence is not a relative, but an absolute belief, embracing all things, all places, and all times. Secondly, that even if the objection were valid, it makes no attempt to propound an alternative theory of the origin of these orderly arrangements. Thirdly, the affirmation that the alternative theory, viz., that all existing phenomena have been evolved by the action of the unintelligent forces of nature, in conformity with invariable law, — affords an adequate account of the existence of this order, contradicts alike our reason and our experience. First, it contradicts our reason. What, I ask, is the conclusion which we draw, when we contemplate an orderly arrangement of a complicated character? I answer that we cannot help inferring that it has originated in intelligence. If the suggestion is made, that it is due to what is commonly called chance, we reject it with scorn. Scientific unbelief, I know, affirms that there is no such thing as chance. Let me adduce one or two simple illustrations. Suppose a traveller had met in some foreign country a construction (it is my misfortune, and not my fault, that I can only express myself in language which has the appearance of assuming the point at issue), which on examination he found to bear a striking resemblance to the machinery in the arsenal at Woolwich, and that no one could tell him how it had originated. Further, that he succeeded in setting it in motion; and that after carefully observing it, he discovered that all its movements took place in a constantly recurring definite order. Let us also further suppose, that on making inquiry how it got there, he was told that during some distant period of the past, a number of the unintelligent forces of nature, after a prolonged struggle, had succeeded in evolving this singular result. Would he, I ask, consider this an adequate account of its origin, or view it as an attempt to impose on his credulity? Or let us take a case nearer home, the library of the British Museum for example, or its collections of minerals or fossils. On walking round them he could observe that their contents were arranged in a certain definite order, yet he is entirely ignorant how they got arranged in this order. But he would scorn the idea, if it were suggested to him, that these arrangements were the result of the concurrence of a number of unintelligent forces, and would without a moment's hesitation draw the conclusion that they were due to the agency of intelligence. Of this he would feel as certain as of his own existence. These instances will be equally suitable as illustrations of the argument from adaptation. But it will be needless to multiply examples. I therefore ask if in these, and in an indefinite number of similar cases, we esteem this conclusion to be one of the most unquestionable of certitudes, why should the inference become inconclusive, when we observe similar arrangements in the phenomena of nature, the only difference being that the latter are on a vaster scale, and in an endless variety of complication? It follows, therefore, that the alternative suggested by unbelief contradicts the convictions of the reason of an overwhelming majority of civilized men. Secondly, the alternative theory derives no support from experience. No one has ever witnessed an orderly arrangement issue from the meeting together of a number of the unintelligent forces of nature. If on throwing up twelve dice an equal number of times, they invariably fall in the same order, the conclusion is inevitable — they are loaded. In a similar manner the conclusion is equally inevitable, when we contemplate the orderly arrangements of the universe. They are loaded with a Divine intelligence.

III. THE ARGUMENT FOUNDED ON THE INNUMERABLE CORRELATIONS AND ADAPTATIONS WHICH EXIST IN THE UNIVERSE, COMMONLY CALLED THE ARGUMENT FROM FINAL CAUSES. The argument from adaptation may be best exhibited under two heads. First, those adaptations which denote plan, or the realization of an idea through a gradual course of evolution; and, secondly, those adaptations by which a particular result is produced, and which alone render its production possible. To take an example of each. The human hand, if contemplated as a piece of mechanism, is one of the most wonderful of contrivances. We all know the innumerable and the delicate functions which it is capable of executing. It consists of a number of parts marvellously adjusted and correlated together, which, if any one of them had been different from what it is, or had been differently correlated one to the other, the mechanism in question would either never have come into existence, or it would have failed to produce the results which it is now capable of accomplishing. This serves as an illustration of the argument from both kinds of adaptation above referred to. This marvellous instrument, as it exists in man, is found in embryo in the fore feet of the lowest form of vertebrate animals. Its parts are all found there, yet in such a form that they are utterly unable to produce the results which they do in man. They exist there in type only, or idea, of which the human hand is the realization. Before it has attained to this realization it has appeared in different orders of animals, each time making a nearer approach to the realization which the idea has received in the hand of man, and each time correlated to a corresponding advance in mind. Throughout the whole series of these improvements in the instrument, we recognize what in ordinary language we designate a plan, or, the gradual realization of an idea, commencing in a very rudimentary form, and gradually attaining to higher stages of perfection, until it has culminated in the human hand. A process of this kind, when we witness it under ordinary circumstances, we designate a plan. But a plan implies the presence of intelligence. When, therefore, we see such plans carried out in nature, which only differ from ordinary ones in the multitude of the adaptations and correlations which are necessary to enable them to become realities, we may surely draw the inference that they must have originated in intelligence. But the hand forms an apt illustration of the other kind of adaptation. I have already observed that it is admitted on all hands to be a marvellous piece of mechanism, so constituted as to be capable of executing an almost endless variety of functions. The unbeliever, however, asks us to believe that this affords no proof that it has originated in intelligence. But if he were to fall in with an instrument devoid of life, which was capable of executing only ball of the functions which are performed by the human hand, he would not only infer that it had had a contriver, but he would be loud in the praises of his ingenuity. Why then, I ask, should the contemplation of the one piece of mechanism afford unquestionable evidence of the presence of an intelligent contriver, and the contemplation of that of which it is the copy, only far more elaborate and perfect, afford none? The reason why the opponent of theism accepts the one inference, and rejects the other, must be left to him to explain. I will only adduce one further illustration, viz., our faculty of hearing, because this is effected by three sets of adjustments, each of which is entirely independent of the others; and each of which consists of a number of complicated correlations. The first of these adjustments consists of the vocal organs, which form a musical instrument of a far more complicated character than has ever been invented by man. Be it observed also that this musical instrument is so constituted, that it subserves a multitude of purposes beyond the production of noise. Yet exquisite as this instrument is, it never would have produced a single sound unless it had been correlated to the atmospheric air, or the air to it, in such a manner that its waves should correspond with the different movements of the instrument. These correlations, in order theft they may produce musical sounds, must be of the most complicated character; and yet the one set are absolutely independent of the other. Yet both these sets of marvellous adjustments and correlations would fail to produce a single sound, except for the existence of another highly complicated set of correlations and adjustments, independent of both, viz., the human ear, adapted to receive the impressions of the waves of sound, the auric nerves, and the brain to perceive them, and the human mind to interpret their meaning. Each of these is composed of a number of the most complicated adjustments; and unless the entire series, of which all three sets of adaptations are composed, had been mutually correlated the one to the other, with the utmost care, hearing would have been impossible, and the remaining complicated adjustments would have existed in vain. I have only adduced these two examples for the purpose of illustrating the nature of the argument. The reader must estimate its force, remembering only that the universe is admitted on all hands to be full of similar adjustments, in numbers which surpass the powers of the human intellect even to conceive. What then must be the conjoint force of the whole? Let me draw the inference, Reason affirms that the theory that these adaptations, adjustments, and correlations, with which every part of the universe abounds, have originated in an intelligence which possesses a power adequate to their production, is an account of their origin which satisfies the requirements alike of common sense and a sound philosophy; or to employ the metaphor used above, these adjustments, adaptations, and correlations proclaim the fact that the forces of the universe are everywhere loaded with intelligence. This argument acquires an additional conclusiveness, the amount of which it is difficult to estimate, from considerations derived from the mathematical doctrine of chances. I have already observed that these adjustments and correlations are conditioned on a number of the forces of the universe concurring in meeting together at the same time and place; and that if any one of them had failed to do so, the result produced by their correlation would have either not existed at all, or would have been a different one from that which would have been produced by the conjoint action of the whole. Now, it is obvious that if these adaptations, etc., have not been produced by a superintending intelligence, they can only have been the result of that fortuitous concurrence of forces which we have above described as constituting what is popularly designated chance. This being so, the production of those sets of complicated correlations, which I have above described as necessary for the production of that infinite variety of sounds which the ear is capable of distinguishing, by the fortunate meeting together of a number of independent forces at the same time and place, in accordance with the mathematical doctrine of chances, could only be expressed by a fraction, which, if its numerator is unity, its denominator would be some number followed by an array of ciphers, the length of which I must leave to the reader to conjecture. But this is only an inconsiderable part of the difficulty which besets the theory which I am controverting. This process would have to be repeated in the case of every independent correlation in the universe; and to get at the combined result, these fractions would have to be multiplied together; and the result would be a fraction whose numerator is unity, having for its denominator some number followed by an array of ciphers continued ad infinitum. According, then, to the mathematical doctrine of chances, it is an improbability, amounting to an impossibility, that these adaptations and correlations can have been the result of a fortuitous concurrence of the unintelligent forces of nature. They must then originate in intelligence. The theory which opponents of theism ask us to accept, as affording a rational account of the origin of those adaptations and correlations with which the universe is full, is this. The forces of the universe have gone on energizing in conformity with laws from which they cannot deviate during the eternal ages of the past; and in their course have passed through every possible combination. The unstable ones have perished, and the stable ones have survived, and by means of this ever-reiterated process have at length emerged the order and adaptations of that portion of the universe which is destitute of life, without the intervention of intelligence. How these forces originated, and became endowed with their specific qualities, which have rendered them capable of effecting such marvellous results, we are asked to believe to be a secret into which the limitations of the human mind render it impossible for us to penetrate, and which must therefore remain forever unknown. But with respect to the process by which animated existence has been evolved, its language is less vague. Its theory is as follows. The original germs of life, the existence of which it is compelled to postulate, and which, in a manner wholly unaccounted for, became possessed of a most convenient power of generating their like, with a number of inconsiderable variations, produced a progeny greatly in excess of their means of subsistence. Hence originated among them a struggle for life, with the effect that the weaker living forms have perished, and the stronger, i.e., those better adapted to their environment, have survived. This struggle has been continued during an indefinite number of ages. This theory is called the theory of natural selection, or the survival of the fittest in the struggle for existence; and modern atheistic unbelief propounds it, aided by another theory, viz., that of sexual selection, and a third, viz., that of the accumulation of habits through a long succession of transmissions from remote ancestors, which have gradually become fixed, as an adequate account of the origin of all the adaptations and correlations which are presented in the existing forms of animal and vegetable life. This theory utterly breaks down, as affording even a specious account of the origin of these adaptations and correlations at several points. First, it fails to account for the origin of life, or to show that it is possible to produce living out of non-living matter. Until it can effect this, it is simply useless for the purposes of atheism. Strange to say, unbelief is now compelled to live by faith. It is confident that the discovery will be made hereafter. Secondly, it fails to give any account of the origin of those qualities, which the original germs of life must have possessed, in order that a starting point may be found for the course of evolution which it propounds. Thirdly, it assumes the concurrence of a multitude of fortunate chances (I use the word "chance" in the sense above described), so numerous as to approximate to the infinite, of what common sense and reason refuse to believe to be possible, and which hopelessly conflicts with the mathematical doctrine of chances and probabilities. Fourthly, it demands an interval of time for the carrying out of this vast process of evolution, which although abstractedly possible, other branches of science refuse to concede to it as lying within the existing order of things. Fifthly, it utterly fails to bridge over that profound gulf which separates the moral from the material universe, the universe of freedom from the universe of necessity. All that it can urge with respect to the origin of life and of free agency, is that it hopes to be able to propound a theory at some future time which shall be able to account for these phenomena. Sixthly, the theory in question, including the Darwinian theory of the production of the entire mass of organisms that have existed in the past, and exist in the present, by the sole agency of natural selection, without the intervention of intelligence, is, in fact, a restatement in a disguised form of the old theory of the production of all the adaptations and correlations in the universe, by the concurrence of an infinite number of fortunate chances — a theory which contradicts the primary intuitions of our intellectual being. Seventhly, as a fact, the recorded observations by mankind for the last, say, four thousand years, show no instance of evolution of one species from another, but display variation, not infinite but limited, and recurrent to the original form. Eighthly, as a fact, geology (Palaeontology) shows the same absence of such evolution and of indefinite variation. Ninthly, all the ascertained facts point only to creation by a plan, or in accordance with a rule, which permits variability within discoverable limits, and requires adaptation, and therefore furnishes no evidence of evolution of species. Let me set before the reader in two sentences the result of the foregoing reasonings. The atheistic theory of evolution utterly breaks down as affording a rational account of the origin of adaptations and correlations with which every region of the universe abounds. Consequently the theistic account of their origin, which satisfies alike sound philosophy and common sense, is the only adequate one; or, in other words, they have originated in an intelligence which is possessed of a power adequate to their production.

IV. THE EVIDENCE WHICH IS FURNISHED BY CONSCIENCE AND THE MORAL NATURE OF MAN. Two universes exist beside each other. One, in which the laws of necessity dominate; the other in which free agency is the essential factor. The first may be designated the material, and the second the moral universe. These are separated from each other by a gulf which no theory of evolution can bridge over. When the first free agent came into existence, a power essentially different from any which had preceded it was introduced into that universe, where necessary law had hitherto reigned supreme. The question therefore presents itself, and demands solution: How did it originate? It could not have produced itself. It therefore issued from a cause adequate to produce it. That cause must ultimately resolve itself into the first cause of the universe, that is, God. From this follow the following conclusions — Man is a free agent; therefore God must be a free agent. Man's free agency is limited by conditions; but God is not limited by conditions. Therefore His free agency is more absolute and perfect than the free agency of man. A moral universe exists. God is the cause of its existence. Therefore the essential principles of morality, as affirmed by conscience, and witnessed by the moral nature of man, must exist in God. Personality exists in man as an essential portion of his moral nature; therefore, He who framed man, i.e., God, must be a person, who is at the same time the Creator, the Upholder, and the moral Governor of the universe which He has created. Such are the inferences which we are entitled to draw by the aid of our reason respecting the existence and the moral character of God.

(Preb. Row, M. A.)

We object to this system as follows.

1. Its idea of God is self-contradictory, since it makes Him infinite, yet consisting only of the finite; absolute, yet existing in necessary relation to the universe; supreme, yet shut up to a process of self-evolution and dependent for self-consciousness on man; without self-determination, yet the cause of all that is.

2. Its assumed unity of substance is not only without proof, but it directly contradicts our intuitive judgments. These testify that we are not parts and particles of God, but distinct personal subsistences.

3. It assigns no sufficient cause for that fact of the universe which is highest in rank, and therefore most needs explanation, namely, the existence of personal intelligences. A substance which is itself unconscious, and under the law of necessity, cannot produce beings who are self-conscious and free.

4. It therefore contradicts the affirmations of our moral and religious natures by denying man's freedom and responsibility; by making God to include in Himself all evil as well as all good; and by precluding all prayer, worship, and hope of immortality.

5. Our intuitive conviction of the existence of a God of absolute perfection compels us to conceive of God as possessed of every highest quality and attribute of men, and therefore, especially, of that which constitutes the chief dignity of the human spirit, its personality.

(A. H. Strong, D. D.)

I. LET US FIRST EXPLAIN WHAT WE MEAN BY THE END OF GOD IN CREATION. It will be seen at once that an ultimate end, or that for which all other ends in the series exist, and from which they derive their importance, is in the mind of the agent his chief end. It is contended by some that the same series of subordinate ends may have more than one ultimate end, of which one may be chief, and the others inferior ends. This was the opinion of Edwards. He says: "Two different ends may be both ultimate ends, and yet not be chief ends. They may be both valued for their own sake, and both sought in the same work or acts, and yet one valued more highly and sought more than another. Thus a man may go a journey to obtain two different benefits or enjoyments, both which may be agreeable to him in themselves considered, and so both may be what he values on their own account, and seeks for their own sake; and yet one may be much more agreeable than the other; and so be what he sets his heart chiefly upon, and seeks most after in his going a journey. Thus a man may go a journey partly to obtain the possession and enjoyment of a bride that is very dear to him, and partly to gratify his curiosity in looking in a telescope, or some new invented and extraordinary optic glass. Both may be ends that he seeks in his journey, and the one not properly subordinate, or in order to another. One may not depend on another, and therefore both may be ultimate ends; but yet the obtaining his beloved bride may be his chief end, and the benefit of the optic glass his inferior end. The former may be what he sets his heart most upon, and so be properly the chief end of his journey." Our view differs somewhat from that of Edwards upon this point. As these different objects are to be obtained by the same course of action, or by the same series of subordinate ends, we believe it would be speaking more correctly to represent them as forming one compound ultimate end, rather than two distinct ultimate ends. Again: The ends or purposes of intelligent beings are divided into subjective and objective ends. The subjective end has reference to the feelings and desires of the agent or being, which are to be gratified by the selection and accomplishment of the objective end. It consists in the gratification of these feelings and desires. The objective end is the thing to be done or brought to pass, and to the accomplishment of which the agent is prompted by these feelings, affections, or desires. It is not the subjective end of God in creating the universe that we seek. We know this must have been based in the perfections of His character; it must have been for the gratification of His infinite benevolence, His boundless love, that He adopted and spake into being the present system of things. But there must be some objective end toward which He is impelled by His benevolence and love, and for the accomplishment of which the present system was caused to exist. It is this objective end that we are endeavouring to ascertain.

II. WE PROCEED TO POINT OUT WHAT WE CONSIDER GOD'S END IN CREATION TO HAVE BEEN. And here we premise that whatever this end was, it was something in the order of time future; that is, something yet to be obtained or accomplished. It would be absurd to suppose a being to adopt and carry out a plan to obtain a good, or to accomplish an end which was already obtained or accomplished. We are now prepared for the general statement that, according to our view, the end of God in creation is not to be found in Himself — that God is not His own end. The differences between Edwards and ourself upon this point may be traced mainly to a distinction which he has omitted to make, but which we deem of great importance. We mean the distinction which exists between the display of the attributes and perfections of God, and the effect produced by that display upon the mind of the beholder. These attributes and perfections belong to God; their display is the act of God; but the impression made upon the mind of another, by this display, forms no part of God; it is not the act of God, but the result of that act; it is an effect which was not produced, nor does it exist in the mind of God, but which was produced and exists in the mind of the creature. The importance of this distinction will be made apparent hereafter. That God could not have been His own end in creation, we argue from the infinite fulness of His nature. We can conceive of but one way in which a being can become his own objective end in anything he does, and that is by supposing that he is destitute of something of which he feels the needs, and consequently desires for himself. To illustrate: Take the scholar who pursues with diligence his studies; he may do this because he delights in knowledge, and his ultimate objective end may be an increase of knowledge; or he may do it because knowledge will render him more worthy of esteem. In either case, the ultimate end is to be found in himself, and in both the idea of defect on the part of the agent is prominent. Were his knowledge already perfect, there would be no need that he should study to increase it. Now until some defect is found to exist in God — until it can be shown that He does not possess, and has not from eternity possessed, infinite fulness; that there is in His case some personal want unsupplied, it is impossible to show that God is His own end in creation. But it may be well to dwell more at large upon this part of the subject.

1. God's own happiness could not be His ultimate end in creation. It will be borne in mind, that the ultimate end is something in the future, something yet to be accomplished. God's happiness can be made His end in creation in only two ways — by increasing it, or by continuing it, But this happiness can never be increased, for it is already perfect in kind, and infinite in degree. And the only way in which the continuance of this happiness can be made God's end in creation is by supposing it necessary order to the continued gratification of His benevolent feelings. While the feelings of God's heart are fully gratified He must be happy; and we admit that His failing to accomplish any purpose, and thus failing to gratify these feelings, would disappoint and render Him unhappy. So that the continued gratification of these feelings, and thus the continuance of His happiness, was undoubtedly an end of God in creation; but, as we have seen, this was His subjective, and not His objective end. We perceive, then, that God's happiness, either in its increase or continuance, is not the end for which we seek.

2. God's attributes, natural or moral, could not have been His end in creation. The only ways in which we can conceive the attributes of God to be His end in creation, are to increase them, to exercise them, or to display them. The first could not have been His end, for the increase of attributes already infinite is impossible. It will be seen that Edwards makes the exercise of God's infinite attributes a thing desirable in itself, and one of His ends in creation. If we understand him, he teaches that God exerted His infinite power and wisdom in creation for the sake of exerting them; their exercise was in itself excellent, and one ultimate object or end which Deity had in view in exerting them, was that they might be exerted. That is, the exercise itself, and the end of that exercise, are the same thing. To show the absurdity of this position, we remark —(1) The moral attributes of God were not exercised at all in the work of creation. Benevolence cannot create, nor justice, nor mercy. The only attributes which were, or could have been exerted by God in the work of creation, are His infinite wisdom to contrive, and His eternal power to execute. We admit that the gratification of the benevolent feelings of God's heart led Him to exercise these natural attributes in one direction rather than another; but the gratification of these feelings, as has been already shown, is the subjective end of God in creation. But it may be asked, Did not the work of creation furnish an occasion for the exercise of God's moral attributes, viz., His benevolence, justice, and mercy? Certainly it did. But that which is a mere incident of creation cannot be its end.(2) To suppose God to exercise His natural attributes or powers, simply for the sake of exercising them, or that this forms any part of His ultimate end in exercising them, is a supposition entirely unworthy of Deity. We deny that there is anything excellent in itself in the exercise of natural powers, simply for the sake of exercising them: and this denial holds good whether these powers are finite or infinite; whether they belong to the creature or to the Creator. The truth is, that all the excellence which attaches to the exercise of natural powers, depends upon and is borrowed from, their designed results. The exercise of God's wisdom and power in the work of creation is excellent, because the designed result is excellent, and for no other reason. It is evident, then, that the mere exercise of God's attributes, whether natural or moral, forms no part of His ultimate end in creation. Nor can the mere display of His attributes form any part of God's end in creation. Now the position we take is, that such a display as this, considered separately from any effect to be produced upon mind by it, formed no part of God's end in creation. We are led to this conclusion, because such a display, simply in the light of a display, and aside from the effect it produces upon intelligent mind, is entirely valueless. God understood and delighted in His own attributes just as perfectly before this display as afterward, and, aside from its effect upon other minds, it must be made in vain; which is unworthy of the Great Supreme. What would be thought of an author who should write and publish a book simply to display the powers of his mind, without any idea of having it read to produce an effect upon other minds? Let us recapitulate, and see to what point we have arrived. We started with the proposition, that God was not His own end in creation; or that God's end in creation cannot be found in Himself. We have shown that God's happiness was not His end; that His attributes, natural and moral, whether we consider their increase, their exercise, or their display, were not, and could not have been His end. We have shown that His end, could not consist in any good which He expected to receive, or was capable of receiving from His creatures, owing to impressions made upon their minds by the display of His attributes in the work of creation. We know of no other way in which God can be His own end in creation. And if there is no other way, then the end which we seek is not to be found in God, and we must look for it in some other direction. To this view it is objected by Edwards, that the supposition that God's end is out of Himself militates against His entire and absolute independence. "We must," says he, "conceive of the efficient as depending on His ultimate end. He depends on this end in His desires, aims, actions, and pursuits; so that He fails in all His desires, actions, and pursuits, if He fails of His end. Now if God Himself be His last end, then in His dependence on His end, He depends on nothing but Himself. If all things be of Him, and to Him, and He the first and last, this shows Him to be all in all: He is all to Himself. He goes not out of Himself for what He seeks; but His desires and pursuits, as they originate from, so they terminate in Himself; and He is dependent on none but Himself in the beginning or end of any of His exercises or operations. But if not Himself, but the creature, be His last end, then, as He depends on His last end, He is in some sort dependent on the creature." The fallacy of the position assumed in this objection lies in the supposition that the relation which subsists between the happiness of a being and the accomplishment of his ends has to do with his independence. The question of independence is based upon entirely a different principle, viz., that of the power or ability of the being. If he possesses in himself the power to accomplish his ends, without aid from any other source, then, as far as they are concerned, he is entirely independent; and this is equally true, whether these ends are within or without himself. If a being had no power, or not power sufficient to accomplish his ends, were they all within himself, he would still be dependent: on the other hand, if he has within himself absolute power to accomplish all his ends, although these ends are out of himself, he is still independent. The question of independence has nothing to do with the position of these ends; but it has everything to do with the ability of the agent to execute them. So the question of God's independence does not depend upon the position of His ends, but upon His perfect ability to accomplish them, whatever they are, and wherever they may be located. Having shown that God's end in creation is not in Himself — and having answered the objection of Edwards to this position, the question returns, Where and what is this end? We shall now attempt to answer this question by the following train of reasoning: —

1. The attributes of God are most wonderfully displayed in the work of creation. His power and wisdom are everywhere conspicuous. So, likewise, the moral excellencies of His character are written in sunbeams upon the works of His hand: and to minds not darkened by sin, these excellencies stand out in bold relief. Now a display of this character must produce a powerful effect upon intelligent mind; and upon the supposition that the mind is perfectly formed and rightly attuned, the effect must be blessed indeed. The result to which we come, then, is, that the display of the Divine perfections would produce an effect upon mind, perfectly organized and undisturbed by adverse influences, which would cause the recipient to admire and love the Lord his God with all his heart, mind, and strength; and this effect would be limited only by his capacity.

2. There is another display or exhibition secured by, or consequent upon, the work of creation, viz., that of the attributes, both natural and moral, of the creatures themselves.

3. There is still another effect secured by the work of creation, and the display consequent upon, it, viz., that produced "upon a being by the display of his own powers, attributes, or qualities. These he becomes acquainted with by consciousness, and by a careful observation of their workings in various directions. The impression which these attributes of self must make upon the mind of self, provided this mind is perfect in its organization, and undisturbed by adverse influences, will be in exact proportion to the worth of self in the scale of being. This is self-love as distinguished from selfishness; which is self-love overleaping its boundaries, or overflowing its banks. We have arrived, then, at the following result, viz., that the effect which the display of character consequent upon the work of creation is calculated to produce upon perfect mind, is admiration of love toward, and delight in God, to the full extent of the powers of the creature, and love to self, and all creature intelligences, measured by their worth in the scale of being. In other words, it is entire conformity to the moral law, which consists in loving God with all the soul, mind, and strength, and our neighbour as ourself. This is the result of the action of perfect mind in the direction of perfection itself, it is easy to perceive that perfect bliss, happiness, or delight midst inhere in, or constitute a part of such action — and this, not merely in the sense of art effect, but that it must be woven into its very texture, so as to form a part of its web and woof. This effect is denominated holiness; and as it is produced in the mind of the creature, and not in the mind of God (who was perfectly and infinitely holy before creation began), we call it creature holiness, i.e., holiness belonging to the creature; and the happiness which inheres therein and forms a part of it is, for the same reason, creature happiness. The production of this effect upon the minds of intelligent creatures, we believe to have been God's end in creation — that end without which the universe would not have existed. This position thrown into the form of a proposition would run thus: God's last end in creation was to secure the greatest possible amount of creature holiness, and of that happiness which inheres in and forms a part of such holiness. Or thus: The ultimate, objective end for which God created the universe, was the production of the greatest possible amount of creature holiness and happiness. We use the term creature holiness and happiness in opposition to the position of Edwards, that this holiness and happiness are emanations from God in such a sense, that they are communicated to the creature from His fulness; so that, in fact, they are God's holiness and happiness diffusing themselves among the creatures of His empire. He holds that communication of holiness and happiness formed a part of God's last end, or one of His ultimate ends, in creation. But then, to carry out his theory, which makes God His own end, he calls this holiness and happiness an emanation from Deity Himself, like a fountain overflowing its banks, or sending forth its waters in streams. The idea that creation is an emanation from God is not strictly true. It is a production of God, and a production of something out of nothing, not an emanation from Him. We can see how the benevolence of God could lead Him to purpose from all eternity to create the universe at a certain time, — in which case, the universe would not exist until that time arrived. But we cannot see how an original tendency can exist in God, for something to flow out of Himself, as water streams from a fountain, unless the flowing out co-exists with the tendency; and if so, then the universe has co-existed with God, that is, it has existed from eternity. The phraseology used by Edwards would go to show that the universe is a part of God; and that the holiness of the creature is simply God's holiness communicated to the creature. He says: "The disposition to communicate Himself, or diffuse His own fulness, which we must conceive of as being originally in God as a perfection of His nature, was what moved Him to create the world."..."But the diffusive disposition that excited God to give creatures existence was rather a communicative disposition in general, or a disposition in the fulness of the divinity to flow out and diffuse itself." If these statements are correct, then the creation must be a part of the fulness of God. If the act of creating was the flowing out and the diffusion of the Divinity itself, then the result must have been a part of that divinity; or, in other words, the universe must be a part of God. Again, in speaking of the knowledge, holiness, and joy of the creature, he says: "These things are but the emanations of God's own knowledge, holiness, and joy." So that the universe is not only a part of God, but the very attributes of His intelligent creatures, their perfections, their holiness and happiness, are only communications of the perfections, the holiness and happiness of God: they are God's perfections, God's holiness and happiness, communicated by Him to the creature. We believe that the universe, instead of being an emanation from Deity, is the work of His hand; instead of being the overflowing of His fulness, it is a creation of His omnipotence — a causing something to exist out of nothing; and the holiness and happiness of creatures, instead of being the holiness and happiness of God communicated to them, consists in their conformity to the rule of right, and that delight which inheres in and is consequent upon such conformity. The production of these, or the securing them to the greatest possible extent, we hold to be God's last end in creation. We repeat, then, that the ultimate objective end of God in creating the universe was, to secure the greatest possible amount of creature holiness and happiness. Our reasons for this opinion are as follows:

1. As we have seen, God's ultimate end must be something desirable in itself, and not desired merely as a means to an end. The holiness of God is the most excellent thing in the universe; and next to it, is the holiness of His creatures. God's end in creation could not have been to promote the former, for it was perfect from eternity. It must, therefore, have been to promote the latter, which is so excellent in itself, and so much to be prized for its results, that it is entirely worthy to be the ultimate end of Jehovah. But it may be asked, May not God's end in creation have been to display His own holiness, on account of the delight He takes in having that holiness praised, loved, and adored? No doubt God delights to have the perfections of His character praised, loved, and adored; but, is this delight selfish, or is it benevolent? If selfish, then it is sin. If benevolent, then it is a delight in holiness. God delights to be praised, loved, and adored, because this praise, love, and adoration, form the principal ingredient in holiness; and as it is the creature who praises, loves, and adores, so that this effect is produced in the mind and heart of the creature, we call it creature holiness.

2. We argue that creature holiness is the end of God in creation, from the fact that for God to promote His own glory, or to promote such a state of mind in the creature as will lead the creature to glorify Him, is the same thing as to promote holiness in the creature. The Scriptures teach that God does what He does for His own name's sake, or, which is the same thing, for His glory's sake; and we are commanded, "whether we eat or drink, or whatever we do, to do all to the glory of God." If, therefore, "God's glory," and "God's being glorified," as they are set forth in the Scriptures, differ from creature holiness, then His holiness is not the end of God in creation; but if they can be shown to be the same thing, then is it His last great end in creating the universe. God's glory consists either in that which constitutes His intrinsic glory, or in that in which He delights and glories, as something which He desires and seeks to accomplish above everything else; or in that state of mind in others, which leads them to praise and glorify Him. That God's intrinsic glory was not, and could not have been His end in creation, is evident from the fact that it was and is the same from eternity, before creation existed; it has never been in any sense changed or altered, nor is it possible that such change should take place: and it is perfectly evident that that which existed before an event, and is not in the least changed by the event, could not have been the end or object of that event. Again: If we mean, by God's glory, that in which He delights and glories, as something which He desires and seeks to accomplish above everything else; then, as we contend, this something is holiness: and as it cannot be His own holiness (for He cannot seek to accomplish what is already accomplished), it must be creature holiness. That holiness is what God delights in above everything else, and desires to promote, is evident from the following considerations:(1) It is the most excellent or desirable thing in the universe, and, therefore, God must delight in it supremely; it must be that in which He glories. This we have already illustrated.(2) The moral law contains the foundation and essence of true holiness; and, if this law is (as it is universally admitted to be) a transcript of God, then does He delight supremely in holiness.(3) The rewards and penalties which God has attached to His law, and the development which He has made of his feelings in the death of Christ, and the work of the Spirit, all go to show that He has set His heart supremely upon holiness, that He delights and glories in it, and seeks, above everything else, to promote it.(4) The Scriptures teach that, without holiness, it is impossible to please God; and that faith is peculiarly pleasing in His sight, because of its relation to holiness; it appropriates the righteousness of Christ; it purifies the heart, and produces good works.(5) It must be evident to every student of the Bible, and close observer of the providences of God, as they are developed in the history of the Church, that the whole economy of grace has for its object the production and conservation of sanctification or holiness; and that, when this is accomplished, the gracious economy will he exchanged for one purely legal.(6) The transcendent glory of heaven consists in its holiness — nothing unclean or impure shall be admitted into it. These considerations go to show that God delights supremely in holiness, and that its production to the greatest possible extent is the thing upon which He has supremely set His heart. Again: If we mean by God's glory, the impression made upon the minds of others, which leads them to praise and glorify Him, then vie say, This impression is holiness, and as it is made in the minds of creatures, it is creature holiness. When we love the Lord our God with all our soul, mind, and strength, we glorify Him for what He is in Himself; and when we love His creatures, according to their worth in the scale of being, we glorify Him through His creatures, as the servants of His household, and the subjects of His empire. If we are holy, we shall glorify God; and if we glorify God, we shall be holy. The one cannot exist without the other; and they resolve themselves into the same thing. This view perfectly accords with the Scriptures. As our limits forbid an extended examination, we will select from those passages quoted by Edwards, to prove that God is His own end in creation. The first class are those which speak of God as the first and the last, the beginning and the end (Isaiah 44:6; Revelation 1:8; Revelation 1:11). These passages simply teach the eternity and absolute sovereignty of God. They have nothing to do with His end in creation; and the wonder is that a divine like Edwards should have quoted them for such a purpose. A second class of passages are those which declare everything to have been created for God (Colossians 1:16; Hebrews 2:10). These texts teach that God is the Creator and Proprietor of all things — that they were made by Him, and for His use; but they do not decide what use God intends to make of them, nor what end He means to accomplish by them. They have no sort of bearing upon the question under discussion. A third class are those passages which speak of God's glory as the end of all things. They may be arranged under three heads.

1. Those passages which speak of what God does as being done for His name's sake, or for His own glory (Isaiah 43:6, 7; Isaiah 60:21; 2 Samuel 7:23; Psalm 106:8). These texts teach that God does what He does, to lead His subjects to praise and glorify Him, and to magnify His great and holy name; in other words, to love Him with all their soul, mind, and strength: and what is that but creature holiness?

2. Those passages which enjoin it upon the creature to do what he does to the glory of God (1 Corinthians 6:20; 1 Corinthians 10:31).

3. Those passages which speak of the glory of God as the result of certain acts of the creature (Philippians 1:11; John 15:8). But how is it that, "being filled with the fruits of righteousness," and "bearing much fruit," glorifies God? It does this in two ways: These fruits are holiness embodied in the life, and they present the transcendent excellence of God's ultimate end in creation. They produce their effect upon other minds, and lead them to praise and glorify God, and thus promote holiness in them. To love and adore God with all the heart, is to glorify God; and to love and adore God with all the heart, is holiness in exercise: so that, in this sense, God's glory and the exercise of holy affections are the same thing. And to lead others to love and adore God with all the heart, is to lead them to glorify God; and to lead others to love and adore God with all the heart, is to lead them to exercise holy affections: so that to promote the glory of God in others, and to promote holiness in them, is the same thing. The end of God in creation, then, as we think we have shown, is not in Himself, but consists in the promotion of creature holiness, and that happiness which may appropriately be called the happiness of holiness.

(W. C. Wisner.)

It is proposed to examine the general teaching of the Scriptures in the light of six laws, according to which, by the common consensus of competent authorities, the Creator worked in the production of this present terrestrial order.

1. The first of these laws is the law of progress. It may be taken as a fact, settled by overwhelming scientific evidence, and no less clearly affirmed in Genesis, that the world was not created all at once, and that there was a certain order in which its various parts appeared. It was, without an exception, an order under a law of progress; first, that which was lower, afterward that which was higher. The illustrations are so familiar that they scarcely need to be mentioned. Is this law of progress still in force; or is the progress ended, and is man, as we know him, the last and highest form of life that earth shall see? The impossibility of further progress cannot therefore be argued on the ground of inconceivability. It can only be established if it be proved beyond controversy that the end of creation has been reached in man. Is there sufficient reason to believe this? Reason itself teaches that if there be a personal God, the Creator of all, then the self-manifestation of God must be the highest end of the earthly creation. When, therefore, the Holy Scripture tells us of the appearance on earth of a God-man, the perfect "image of the invisible God," and of a new order of manhood begotten by a new birth into union with this second man, and renewed after the image of the Creator, to be manifested hereafter in a corresponding embodiment and in a changed environment, through a resurrection from the dead, all this is so far from being contrary to the order established in creation, that it is in full accord therewith, and only furnishes a new illustration of that law of progress according to which God worked from the beginning.

2. A second law which has been discovered to have been characteristic of the creative process, is the law of progress by ages. That this was the law of Divine procedure is clear both from the book of revelation and of nature. There were periods of creative activity. The work had its evenings and its mornings, repeatedly recurring. The line of progress was not a uniform gradient; not an inclined plane, but a stairway, in which the steps were aeons. In each instance a "new idea in the system of progress" was introduced, and that fact constituted, in part at least, the new age. But it may be further remarked, that each new age was marked, not merely by the presence, but by the dominance, of a higher type of life than the one preceding. Now we have seen that, according to Scripture, the law of progress is still in force; after man as he now is, shall appear manifested in the earth a humanity of a higher type than the present animal man, namely, the "spiritual man," as Paul calls him. Does the Scripture also recognize this plan of progress by ages as still the plan of God? The contrast between the present age and that which is to come, is indeed one of the fundamental things in the inspired representation of the divinely established order. And we can now see how, in this mode of representation, the Scriptures speak with scientific precision, and harmonize completely with the best certified conceptions of nineteenth century science. Not only, according to their teaching, is there to be still further progress, progress manifested in the introduction of a new and higher type of manhood, even that which is "from heaven," but the introduction of that new manhood of the resurrection to dominance in the creation is uniformly represented as marking the beginning of a new age. And just herein, according to the Scripture, lies the contrast between the age which now is and that which is to come; that in the age which is now, the dominant type of life is that of the natural, or "animal," man; in that which is to come, the dominant type of life shall be "spiritual" or resurrection manhood, manifested in men described by our Lord as those "who cannot die any more, but are equal unto the angels."

3. Another law of the Divine working in the bygone ages of the earth's history, we may call the law of anticipative or prophetic forms. This law has been formulated by Professor Agassiz in the following words, which have been endorsed by the most recent authorities as correctly representing the facts: "Earlier organic forms often appear to foreshadow and predict others that are to succeed them in time, as the winged and marine reptiles of the Mesozoic age foreshadow the birds and cetaceans (that were to succeed them in the next age). There were reptiles before the Reptilian age; mammals before the Mammalian age. These appear now like a prophecy in that earlier time of an order of things not possible with the earlier combinations then prevailing in the animal kingdom." Such, then, has been the law in all the past ages. Is it still in force, or is its operation ended? What a momentous question! How full of both scientific and religious interest! For even on scientific grounds, as has been shown, we are led to anticipate an age to come which shall be marked by the dominance of a type of life higher than the present. And, as we have seen, the suggestion of science is in this case confirmed by Scripture, which describes the life and characteristics of that "age to come," as science could not. Such descriptions are not very minute, but so far as they go they are very definite and clear. Perhaps the most full and clear single statement is that found in the words of Christ to the Sadducees, to whom He spoke of an age to follow the present, to be inherited by men in resurrection; a type of men who "neither marry nor are given in marriage. Neither can they die any more: for they are equal unto the angels; and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection." (Luke 20:35, 36). Men incapable of subjection to death, sons of God, perfectly holy — such is the race which shall come to headship in creation in the future age. Herein again, then, the record of Scripture is consistent at once with the system of law as revealed in the past, and with itself, in that, having predicted an age to come, to be inherited by the higher order of resurrection manhood, it sets forth also, as historic fact, the appearance of anticipative forms in the age which now is. Not to speak of the cases of Enoch and Elijah, we have an Illustrious instance of a prophetic type in the person of Jesus of Nazareth. In Him was manifested a type of life transcending beyond measure embodied life as we know it here. It appeared in One who claimed to be the Son of God, and who manifested powers, in proof of this claim, such as well befitted it — powers which later, by one of His disciples, were suggestively called "powers of the age to come," and who finally became the firstborn from the dead, being the firstborn son of the resurrection.

4. Another law to be observed in the Divine working in the early history of the earth, is the law of creative interpositions. We must, on scientific grounds, affirm creative intervention at least in the origination of matter, and of life, and of free moral agents. The only alternative is absolute agnosticism on this subject. So much, then, as regards the past. Creative interposition appears as included in the system of law. How is it as regards the future? Are we now done with these manifestations of creative power, or shall they, according to the Scripture, be witnessed again in the future? For we are taught, as we have seen, that the present age, marked by the presence and dominance of the animal man, shall end; and that another age shall then follow, marked by the introduction of a new physical order, "a new heavens and a new earth," — an order of things to be inherited by an order of men called by our Lord "children of God and sons of the resurrection," sexless, sinless, and incapable of dying. Has the man of the present age power to raise himself into this exalted order of life? No one will pretend this. In particular, the natural, or psychical, animal man of the present age cannot by any self-development or self-culture raise himself into the order of the spiritual manhood of the coming age. For regeneration and for resurrection alike he is powerless. Hence Holy Scripture tells us with utmost plainness that what has been in time past, is now and shall be again. It tells us that even in this present age the creative power of God is secretly working, in the "new birth" of those who are chosen to become the sons of God and heirs of the age to come, and therefore styles the regenerated man "a new creature." As yet, however, it is but the faint dawn of the creative morning. When the day breaks, the same Scriptures teach us, shall be seen a new and magnificent display of the creative might of God, introducing "a new heavens and a new earth," and bringing in also the sons of the resurrection with their spiritual bodies to inherit the glory. For as the new order of the new age shall itself be introduced by creative power, so shall the new manhood which is destined to inherit that order. For resurrection is by no possibility the outcome of a natural process; it will be the direct result of an act of the almighty power of God.

5. Reference may be made to another law of the Divine administration in the earlier terrestrial history. It may be called the law of exterminations. The rocks bear testimony to the fact that from time to time during the long creative ages, at the close of one great period after another, there occurred exterminations, more or less extensive, of various orders of life. Professor Dana, for instance, tells us, "At the close of each period of the Palaeozoic ages, there was an extermination of a large number of living species; and, as each epoch terminated...one, in most cases, less general." In particular, he says, again, that at the close of the Cretaceous age there was an extermination "remarkable for its universality and thoroughness"; "the vast majority of the species, and nearly all the characteristic genera disappeared." The same thing occurred again at the close of the Tertiary, and again in the Quaternary. The causes of these various exterminations were different in different instances. Often they were due to the elevation or submergence of extensive areas of the earth's surface; sometimes to the more sudden and rapid action of earthquakes; sometimes, within narrow limits, they were caused by fiery eruptions from the interior of the earth. Sometimes, again, they were due to changes of climate more or less extensive, through the operation of causes which need not be here detailed. As a matter of fact, it appears that the inbringing of a higher order of life and organization commonly involved the extermination of various genera and species unsuited to the new environment. This was demonstrably a part of the plan of God in the development of His creative thoughts. Even lesser divisions of the great creative aeons were sometimes marked in like manner. Up to the present human period, therefore, there has been in force a law of exterminations, operating under the conditions specified. But yet another age, according to Scripture, is to succeed the present. Is there reason to anticipate that when the point shall be reached of transition from the present to the coming age, the law of exterminations will again take effect? Does Scripture give any hint in answer to this question, and is it here again in harmony with scientific discovery as regards the laws of the past? The reader will have anticipated the answer which must be given. For it is the repeated declaration of the New Testament Scriptures that the present age shall end, as earlier ages have sometimes ended, with catastrophic changes; this next time, with a catastrophe, not of water, but of fire, giving a new and very terrible application of the ancient law of exterminations. For we are told that a day is coming when "the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up." The day for which the present heavens and earth are "reserved into fire," shall also be a "day of the perdition of ungodly men." (2 Peter 3:7).

6. Yet one other law of the creative working may be discerned as we study the record of the rocks. We may well call it the law of preparation. It were thinkable, since God is almighty, that each age should have been introduced as something absolutely new, having no connection with the ages that had preceded it; that He should have prepared the earth for the new orders of life which were to inhabit it, by a direct act of creative power. But, as a matter of fact, God did not do in this way. On the contrary, He so constituted the successive ages in the earth's history that each was a preparation for that which was to come afterward. Illustrations are as numerous as the ages and periods of geologic time. Each age had its roots, so to speak, in the age or ages that had preceded it. Indeed, the whole Scripture history is a series of illustrations of this law. Just as in the geologic ages, here were subordinate periods, less sharply distinct indeed, into which the greater ages were subdivided, so the Scriptures divide the whole present age of the natural man into what, in theological and biblical language, we call successive "dispensations." In the case of each of these we may see this law of preparation exemplified. Each dispensation was in order to another which was to follow. The Adamic age prepared for the Noachian; the Noachian, for the Mosaic; the Mosaic — and indeed all of these again — for the Christian. So also, according to the same revelation, shall it prove to be as regards the whole great age of the natural man. In a manner still more momentous and comprehensive, this age is set forth as a preparation for the age which is to come, the resurrection age. This may be true even in a physical sense. For in the new age, according to Isaiah, Peter, and John, there is to be a new earth, which shall appear out of the fires which shall yet consume the present world; and for this and the physical changes which shall thus be brought about, we know not what forces may not even now silently be working beneath our very feet. They teach this as regards regeneration and sanctification. These are preparatory in their nature. It is thus that the new man is "made in secret, and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth." Even death, whether it be of the saint or of the sinner, has its part in the preparatory plan. The application of this is evident. Whence such a harmony in the one case, and in such unexpected directions, for which we search in the authoritative books of other religions in vain? Whence had these men who wrote the Scriptures this their wisdom? Assume what they claim for themselves, a special inspiration from the Former of the universe Himself, and then the harmony with the original system of natural law which pervades the representations of the past, present, and future, is what we should expect. Deny this, and how shall the fact be explained? Further, it is evident that the facts to which our attention has been directed, reverse the argument which one often hears from unbelievers against the probability of the truth of Scripture history and prophecy, derived from the observed uniformity of the system of natural law. Instead of saying that the observed invariability of the system of natural law makes the Scripture teachings with regard to the incarnation, the resurrection, the new heavens and the new earth, and the judgment by which they shall be introduced, to be intrinsically improbable, we must say the opposite! These thoughts also have a bearing on the theodicy. Much in the present age is dark with painful mystery. If there be a God infinite in holiness, goodness, and power, then, it has been asked in all ages, Why such a miserable, imperfect world? Why the earth. quake, the pestilence, and the famine, with the destruction and agony they bring? Why sorrow, and sin, and death? Why the disappointed hopes, the darkened homes, empires wrecked, races degenerating, and disappearing from sight at last in a morass of moral corruptions? These questions burden the holy, while the scoffer answers in his desperation, "There is no God such as you dream!" If this were the last age of earth, it is hard to see how such questions could be answered. But if we recall to mind the ancient law of progress, and progress by ages, and that other law of preparation, we may be able to see — not indeed the answer to our questionings, but so much as shall enable us to hold fast, without wavering, our faith in the God of nature, of history, and of revelation.

(S. Kellogg, D. D.)

I. DEFINITION OF CREATION. By creation we mean that free act of the triune God by which in the beginning for His own glory He made, without the use of pre-existing materials, the whole visible and invisible universe. In explanation we notice —

1. Creation is not "production out of nothing," as if "nothing" were a substance out of which "something" could be formed.

2. Creation is not a fashioning of preexisting materials, nor an emanation from the substance of Deity, but is a making of that to exist which once did not exist, either in form or substance.

3. Creation is not an instinctive or necessary process of the Divine nature, but is the free act of a rational will, put forth for a definite and sufficient end. Creation is different in kind from that eternal process of the Divine nature in virtue of which we speak of generation and procession. Begetting is eternal, out of time; creation is in time, or with time.

4. Creation is the act of the triune God, in the sense that all the persons of the Trinity, themselves uncreated, have a part in it — the Father as the originating, the Son as the mediating, the Spirit as the realizing cause.

II. PROOF OF THE DOCTRINE OF CREATION. Creation is a truth of which mere science or reason cannot fully assure us. Physical science can observe and record changes, but it knows nothing of origins. Reason cannot absolutely disprove the eternity of matter. For proof of the doctrine of Creation, therefore, we rely wholly upon Scripture. Scripture supplements science, and renders its explanation of the universe complete,

III. THEORIES WHICH OPPOSE CREATION.

1. Dualism. Of dualism there are two forms.(1) That which holds to two self-existent principles, God and matter. These are distinct from and co-eternal with each other. Matter, however, is an unconscious, negative, and imperfect substance, which is subordinate to God, and is made the instrument of His will. This was the view of the Alexandrian Gnostics. It was essentially an attempt to combine with Christianity the Platonic conception of the ὕλη. In this way it thought to account for the existence of evil, and to escape the difficulty of imagining a production without use of preexisting material. A similar view has been held in modern times by John Stuart Mill, and apparently by Frederick W. Robertson. With regard to this view we remark:(a) The maxim ex nihilo nihil fit, upon which it rests, is true only in so far as it asserts that no event takes place without a cause. It is false, if it mean that nothing can ever be made except out of material previously existing. The maxim is therefore applicable only to the realm of second causes, and does not bar the creative power of the great first Cause. The doctrine of creation does not dispense with a cause; on the other hand, it assigns to the universe a sufficient cause in God. Martensen, "Dogmatics," 116 — "The nothing out of which God creates the world, is the eternal possibilities of His will, which are the sources of all the actualities of the world."(b) Although creation without the use of pre-existing material is inconceivable, in the sense of being unpicturable to the imagination, yet the eternity of matter is equally inconceivable. For creation without pre-existing material, moreover, we find remote analogies in our own creation of ideas and volitions, a fact as inexplicable as God's bringing of new substances into being. Mivart, "Lessons from Nature," 371,372 — "We have to a certain extent an aid to the thought of absolute creation in our own free volition, which, as absolutely originating and determining, may be taken as the type to us of the creative act." We speak of "the creative faculty" of the artist or poet. We cannot give reality to the products of our imaginations, as God can to his. But if thought were only substance, the analogy would be complete. Shedd, "Dogm. Theol.," 1:467 — "Our thoughts and volitions are created ex nihilo, in the sense that one thought is not made out of another thought, nor one volition out of another volition."(c) It is unphilosophical to postulate two eternal substances, when one self-existent Cause of all things will account for the facts.(d) It contradicts our fundamental notion of God as absolute sovereign to suppose the existence of any other substance to be independent of His will.(e) This second substance with which God must of necessity work, since it is, according to the theory, inherently evil and the source of evil, not only limits God's power, but destroys His blessedness.(f) This theory does not answer its purpose of accounting for moral evil, unless it be also assumed that spirit is material — in which case dualism gives place to materialism. The other form of dualism is:(1) That which holds to the eternal existence of two antagonistic spirits, one evil and the other good. In this view, matter is not a negative and imperfect substance which nevertheless has self-existence, but is either the work or the instrument of a personal and positively malignant intelligence, who wages war against all good. This was the view of the Manichaeans. Manichaeanism is a compound of Christianity and the Persian doctrine of two eternal and opposite intelligences. Zoroaster, however, held matter to be pure, and to be the creation of the good Being. Mani apparently regarded matter as captive to the evil spirit, if not absolutely his creation. Of this view we need only say that it is refuted(a) by all the arguments for the unity, omnipotence, sovereignty, and blessedness of God;(b) by the Scripture representations of the prince of evil as the creature of God and as subject to God's control.

2. Emanation. This theory holds that the universe is of the same substance with God, and is the product of successive evolutions from His being. This was the view of the Syrian Gnostics. Their system was an attempt to interpret Christianity in the forms of Oriental theosophy. A similar doctrine was taught, in the last century, by Swedenborg. We object to it upon the following grounds:(1) It virtually denies the infinity and transcendence of God — by applying to Him a principle of evolution, growth, and progress which belongs only to the finite and imperfect.(2) It contradicts the Divine holiness — since man, who by the theory is of the substance of God, is nevertheless morally evil.(3) It leads logically to pantheism — since the claim that human personality is illusory cannot be maintained without also surrendering belief in the personality of God.

3. Creation from eternity. This theory regards creation as an act of God in eternity past. It was propounded by , and has been held in recent times by Martensen. The necessity of supposing such creation from eternity has been argued upon the grounds —(1) That it is a necessary result of God's omnipotence. But we reply that omnipotence does not necessarily imply actual creation; it implies only power to create. Creation, moreover, is in the nature of the case a thing begun. Creation from eternity is a contradiction in terms, and that which is self-contradictory is not an object of power.(2) That it is impossible to conceive of time as having had a beginning, and since the universe and time are co-existent, creation must have been from eternity. But we reply that the argument confounds time with duration. Time is duration measured by successions, and in this sense time can be conceived of as having had a beginning.(3) That the immutability of God requires creation from eternity. But we reply that God's immutability requires not an eternal creation but only an eternal plan of creation.(4) That God's love renders necessary a creation from eternity. Although this theory claims that creation is an act, in eternity past, of God's free will, yet its conceptions of God's omnipotence and love, as necessitating creation, are difficult to reconcile with the Divine independence or personality.

4. Spontaneous generation. This theory holds that creation is but the name for a natural process still going on — matter itself having in it the power, under proper conditions, of taking on new functions, and of developing into organic forms. This view is held by Owen and Bastian. We object that(1) It is a pure hypothesis, not only unverified, but contrary to all known facts.(2) If such in. stances could be authenticated, they would prove nothing as against a proper doctrine of creation — for there would still exist an impossibility of accounting for these vivific properties of matter, except upon the Scriptural view of an intelligent Contriver and Originator of matter and its laws. In short, evolution implies previous involution — if anything comes out of matter, it must first have been put in.(3) This theory, therefore, if true, only supplements the doctrine of original, absolute, immediate creation, with another doctrine of mediate and derivative creation, or the development of the materials and forces originated at the beginning. This development, however, cannot proceed to any valuable end without the guidance of the same intelligence which initiated it.

IV. GOD'S END IN CREATION. In determining this end, we turn first to —

1. The testimony of Scripture. This may be summed up in four statements. God finds His end

(1)in Himself;

(2)in His own will and pleasure;

(3)in His own glory;

(4)in the making known of His power, His wisdom, His holy name.All these statements may be combined in the following, namely, that God's supreme end in creation is nothing outside of Himself, but is His own glory — in the revelation, in and through creatures, of the infinite perfection of His own being. Since holiness is the fundamental attribute in God, to make Himself, His own pleasure, His own glory, His own manifestation, to be His end in creation, is to find His chief end in His own holiness, its maintenance, expression, and communication. To make this His chief end, however, is not to exclude certain subordinate ends, such as the revelation of His wisdom, power, and love, and the consequent happiness of innumerable creatures to whom this revelation is made.

2. The testimony of reason. That His own glory, in the sense just mentioned, is God's supreme end in creation, is evident from the following considerations:(1) God's own glory is the only end actually and perfectly attained in the universe. But while neither the holiness nor the happiness of creatures is actually and perfectly attained, God's glory is made known and will be made known in both the saved and the lost. This, then, must be God's supreme end in creation. This doctrine teaches us that none can frustrate God's plan. God will get glory out of every human life.(2) God's glory is the end intrinsically most valuable. The good of creatures is of insignificant importance compared with this. Wisdom dictates that the greater interest should have precedence of the less.(3) His own glory is the only end which consists with God's independence and sovereignty. If anything in the creature is the last end of God, God is dependent upon the creature. But since God is dependent only on Himself, He must find in Himself His end. To create is not to increase His blessedness, but only to reveal it.(4) His own glory is an end which comprehends and secures, as a subordinate end, every interest of the universe. The interests of the universe are bound up in the interests of God. Glory is not vain-glory, and in expressing His ideal, that is, in expressing Himself, in His creation, He communicates to His creatures the utmost possible good. This self-expression is not selfishness but benevolence. No true poet writes for money or for fame. God does not manifest Himself for the sake of what He can make by it. Self-manifestation is an end in itself. But God's self-manifestation comprises all good to His creatures.(5) God's glory is the end which in a right moral system is proposed to creatures. This must therefore be the end which He in whose image they are made proposes to Himself.

V. RELATION OF THE DOCTRINE OF CREATION TO OTHER DOCTRINES.

1. To the holiness and benevolence of God. This is not a perfect world. It was not perfect even when originally constituted. Its imperfection is due to sin. God made it with reference to the Fall — the stage was arranged for the great drama of sin and redemption which was to be enacted thereon. We accept Bushnell's idea of "anticipative consequences," and would illustrate it by the building of a hospital room while yet no member of the family is sick, and by the salvation of the patriarchs through a Christ yet to come. If the earliest vertebrates of geological history were types of man and preparations for his coming, then pain and death among those same vertebrates may equally have been a type of man's sin and its results of misery. If sin bad not been an incident, foreseen and provided for, the world might have been a Paradise. As a matter of fact, it will become a paradise only at the completion of the redemptive work of Christ.

2. To the wisdom and free-will of God.

3. To providence and redemption.

(A. H. Strong, D. D.)

1. His omnipotence.

2. His wisdom.

3. His goodness.

4. His love.

(J. P. Lange, D. D.)

1. As creation.

2. As nature.

3. As cosmos.

4. As aeon.

(J. P. Lange, D. D.)

What is different, and what is common to both.

1. The order.

2. The constancy.

3. The gradual progression.

4. The aim.

(J. P. Lange, D. D.)

1. The foundations of life in the elementary world.

2. The symbolical phenomena of life in the animal world.

3. The reality and truth of life in the human world.

(J. P. Lange, D. D.)

1. The fact that the world and time are inseparable.

2. The application.

(1)The operations in the world are bound to the order of time.

(2)Time is given for labour.

(J. P. Lange, D. D.)

heaven and earth: —

1. Heaven and earth in union.

2. Earth for heaven.

3. Heaven for earth.

(J. P. Lange, D. D.)

How to begin to write the Bible must have been a question of great difficulty. The beginning which is given here commends itself as peculiarly sublime. Regard it as you please, as literal, historical, prabolical, it is unquestionably marked by adequate energy and magnificence of style. He finds that he must say something about the house before he says anything about the tenant, but he feels that that something must be the least possible.

I. THIS ACCOUNT OF CREATION IS DEEPLY RELIGIOUS, and from this fact I infer that the whole book of which it is the opening chapter is intended to be a religious and not a scientific revelation.

II. THIS ACCOUNT OF CREATION EVIDENTLY ADMITS OF MUCH ELUCIDATION AND EXPANSION. Moses does not say, "I have told you everything, and if any man shall ever arise to make a note or comment upon my words, he is to be regarded as a liar and a thief." He gives rather a rough outline which is to be filled up as life advances. He says in effect "This is the text, now let the commentators come with their notes." This first chapter of Genesis is like an acorn, for out of it have come great forests of literature; it must have some pith in it, and sap, and force, for verily its fertility is nothing less than a miracle.

III. This account of creation, though leaving so much to be elucidated, is in harmony with fact in a sufficient degree to GIVE US CONFIDENCE IN THE THINGS WHICH REMAIN TO BE ILLUSTRATED.

IV. THERE IS A SPECIAL GRANDEUR IN THE ACCOUNT WHICH IS HERE GIVEN OF THE ORIGIN OF MAN. "Let Us make man" — "make," as if little by little, a long process, in the course of which man becomes a party to his own malting! Nor is this suggestion so wide of the mark as might at first appear. Is man not even now in process of being "made"? Must not all the members of the "Us" work upon him in order to complete him and give him the last touch of imperishable beauty? The Father has shaped him, the Son has redeemed him, the Spirit is now regenerating and sanctifying him, manifold ministries are now working upon him, to the end that he may "come to a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ."

(J. Parker, D. D.)

I. As regards the time of creation we are told nothing. There is no note of date or time until after the creation of Adam. Six successive periods of creation are spoken of, with no indication as to the length of each.

II. There is no contradiction, I think, between any result as to the world's age at which science may arrive, and the record with which the Book of Genesis opens. Are there not clear indications that the creation of the world was not the result of the omnipotent act of a moment, but of the Divine creative energy working (as we ever still see it working) through gradual processes, through successive gradations?

III. As long as science keeps to her own great sphere of discovering and codifying facts, we have only to thank her for her labours. I need scarcely say, however, that a certain school of scientific men are not content with this. They leave the boundaries of science, and enter the domain of theology. They say, because we find these successive stages of progress in creation — this development of one period from another — we will regard matter as having in itself all power and potency of life. They will not mention God at all, or if they do it is merely as another name for law. In the law which they discover from its operations — in the potency which they find in matter itself, they see sufficient to account for all creation; and we can dispense with that myth which we call "God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth." It is here they impugn Genesis. It was not "God" who created these things; they were evolved from eternal matter, in accordance with irresistible law. The Bible is primarily a religious book. This chapter is not meant to tell us all the varied processes through which God carried on His great creative work. The lesson Moses had to tell the people he ruled when he brought them out of a land where material force was everything; where men worshipped the physical universe — the fruits of the field, and the moon and stars of heaven — was, that there was a God beyond all these; that these were only the works of His creative power. Without Him they could not be. It was not a scientific view of the material universe, but a religious view, that Moses wished to give these people. He sought to impress on them that, though these things passed through various add successive stages, God was there. God did it.

(T. T. Shore, M. A.)

We must judge the book by the times.

I. The first principle to be inferred is that of THE UNITY OF GOD. One Divine Being is represented as the sole Cause of the universe. Now this is the only foundation of a true religion for humanity.

II. The next principle in this chapter is that ALL NOBLE WORK IS GRADUAL. God spent six days at His work, and then said it was very good. In proportion to the nobility of anything, is it long in reaching its perfection. The greatest ancient nation took the longest time to develope its iron power; the securest political freedom in a nation did not advance by bounds, or by violent revolutions, but in England "broadened slowly down from precedent to precedent." The greatest modern society — the Church of Christ — grew as Christ prophesied, from a beginning as small as a grain of mustard seed into a noble tree, and grows now more slowly than other society has ever grown — so slowly, that persons who are not far-seeing say that it has failed. The same law is true of every individual Christian life. Faith, to be strong, must be of gradual growth. Love, to be unconquerable, must be the produce not of quick-leaping excitement, but of patience having her perfect work. Spiritual character must be moulded into the likeness of Christ by long years of battle and of trial, and we are assured that eternity is not too long to perfect it.

III. Connected with this universal principle is another — that THIS GRADUAL GROWTH OF NOBLE THINGS, CONSIDERED IN ITS GENERAL APPLICATION TO THE UNIVERSE, IS FROM THE LOWER TO THE HIGHER — is, in fact, a progress, not a retrogression. We are told in this chapter that first arose the inorganic elements, and then life — first the life of the plant, then of the animal, and then of man, "the top and crown of things." It is so also in national life — first family life, then pastoral, then agricultural, then the ordered life of a polity, the highest. It is the same with religion. First, natural religion, then the dispensation of the law, then the more spiritual dispensation of the prophets, then the culmination of the external revelation through man in Christ, afterwards the higher inward dispensation of the universal Spirit, to be succeeded by a higher still — the immediate presence of God in all. So also with our own spiritual life. First, conviction of need, then the rapture of felt forgiveness, then God's testing of the soul, through which moral strength and faith grow firm; and as these grow deeper, love, the higher grace, increasing; and as love increases, noble work and nobler patience making life great and pure, till holiness emerges, and we are at one with God; and then, finally, the Christian calm — serene old age, with its clear heaven and sunset light, to prophesy a new and swift approaching dawn for the emancipated spirit.

IV. The next truth to be inferred from this chapter is that THE UNIVERSE WAS PREPARED FOR THE GOOD AND ENJOYMENT OF MAN. I cannot say that this is universal, for the stars exist for themselves, and the sun for other planets than ours; and it is a poor thing to say that the life of animals and plants is not for their own enjoyment as well as ours! but so far as they regard us, it is an universal truth, and the Bible was written for our learning. Therefore, in this chapter, the sun and stars are spoken of only in their relation to us, and man is set as master over all creation. It is on the basis of this truth that man has always unconsciously acted, and made progress in civilization.

V. The next principle is THE INTERDEPENDENCE OF REST AND WORK. The Sabbath is the outward expression of God's recognition of this as a truth for man. It was commanded because it was necessary. "The Sabbath was made for man," said Christ. And the same principle ought to be extended over our whole existence.

VI. Lastly, there is one specially spiritual principle which glorifies this chapter, and the import of which is universal, "GOD MADE MAN IN HIS OWN IMAGE." It is the divinest revelation in the Old Testament. In it is contained the reason of all that has ever been great in human nature or in human history. In it are contained all the sorrows of the race as it looks back to its innocence, and all the hope of the race as it aspires from the depths of its fall to the height of the imperial palace whence it came. In it is contained all the joy of the race as it sees in Christ this great first principle revealed again. In it are contained all the history of the human heart, all the history of the human mind, all the history of the human conscience, all the history of the human spirit. It is the foundation stone of all written and unwritten poetry, of all metaphysics, of all ethics, of all religion.

(Stopford A. Brooke, M. A.)

1. What a strange opening to a book! Without observation, parade, flourish.

2. Strange that there is no argument on the being of God. The Architect is simply named in the description of the building. A portrait in oil suggests a painter.

3. There is a gradual unveiling of God as you proceed with the book. God reveals Himself to us by slow processes.

I. What was BEFORE the beginning?

1. God in underived and perfect existence.

2. God dwelling in the silence and grandeur of His own eternity.

II. What was IN the beginning?

1. When was the beginning? Date not fixed here. We only know the fact, that there was a beginning.

2. What occurred in the beginning? The material universe began to be.

III. What FOLLOWED the beginning?

1. Law.

2. Life.

3. History.

4. Redemption.Remarks:

1. From a beginning we know not what may come.

2. The beginning contains what follows.

(J. S. Withington.)

I. THE DEVOUT RECOGNITION OF GOD SHOULD PRECEDE ALL PHILOSOPHY. The God whom we worship is not a metaphysical idea; a form of thought; a philosophical abstraction; but a living, personal, eternal Being, apart from and prior to all human thought. He is not a creation of the intellect, but the intellect's Creator. We must begin with Him. Is not this one of the child's first thoughts, and one which life's long experience but deepens and confirms — that it was God who created all things? Does not the bare statement carry with it its own conviction? What need is there of proof? Who argues that there is a solid earth on which he stands; a sun shining in midday sky? Who constructs arguments to prove his own existence? And does not God stand at the beginning of all thought and all argument? And is not the denial of Him a sheer and wilful absurdity which no attempt at proof can make even plausible?

II. THE DEVOUT RECOGNITION OF GOD SHOULD PRECEDE ALL SCIENCE. The fact of His existence lies at the foundation of all physical science, and must be admitted as its first and most essential fact. For what is science in general, or a science in particular, but the knowledge of facts — their qualities, relations, and causes — arranged and classified? But if science begins by refusing to admit, or by failing to perceive, the First Fact, and the Great Cause of all things? Does nothing exist but what the knife of the anatomist, or the tests of the chemist can detect? Matter and force do exist, or matter under some plastic power passing through innumerable changes. But what is it? And is this all? Are there no marks of intelligence? — purpose? — will? Is there no distinction of beauty? — of right and wrong? And what are these but marks of the ever-present God? Atheism explains nothing, and Pantheism nothing. No! Science cannot discover God. It is in the light of God's presence that science is best revealed. Science and philosophy alike presuppose HIM.

III. THE DEVOUT RECOGNITION OF GOD PRECEDES ALL MORALITY AND RELIGION. It lies at the basis of any sound ethical theory, and any true religious system of doctrine and practice. Religion, whether natural or revealed, is based on this fact. It is no more the part of religion than it is of philosophy and science to discover or to demonstrate the existence of God, but to worship Him.

(F. J. Falding, D. D.)

I. THERE WAS A BEGINNING, AND THIS WAS THE ACT OF GOD.

II. THE DISORDER OF PRIMAL CREATION IS REDUCED TO ORDER BY THE POWER AND INTELLIGENCE OF THE DIVINE WILL. The life of God is imparted to the chaotic world.

III. THIS PROGRESS OF CREATION PASSES FROM ORDER, THROUGH ORGANIZATION, INTO LIFE, UNTIL IT CULMINATES IN MAN. Plants and animals are "after their kind." Not so with man. He is "after the likeness" of God. Lessons:

1. The adaptation of this world to be man's place of abode while God tries him by the duty He has placed upon him to perform.

2. All things are subject to man's use and government.

3. The human race is of one blood, derived from one pair.

4. God loves order.

(L. D. Bevan, LL. B.)

This simple sentence —

I. DENIES ATHEISM. It assumes the being of God.

II. DENIES POLYTHEISM. Confesses the one eternal Creator.

III. DENIES MATERIALISM. Asserts the creation of matter.

IV. DENIES PANTHEISM. Assumes the existence of God before all things, and apart from them.

V. DENIES FATALISM. Involves the freedom of the Eternal Being.

(James G. Murphy, LL. D.)

Though the Hebrew prophet was not a teacher of science, he has in this chapter given us the alphabet of religious science. The great principles of things were disclosed to him, and in these verses he has given us a rapid and suggestive sketch of the great outlines of God's creative work. His instructions were not incorrect, but incomplete, in order to meet the pupil's capacity.

I. LOOK AT THE HARMONY BETWEEN MOSES AND DARWIN.

1. According to Moses, creation has its origin in God. Darwin has gone down into the bowels of the earth, he has traced this globe to a nebulous light, and pursued the molecules to their furthest point. But he has confessed that beyond there is a mystery which baffles all skill, and this mystery he calls God. According to him the material universe has a spiritual origin, and before and after each creation he would write the word "God."

2. According to Moses, God's method of creation was by slow development. Evolution is the great faith of the scientific world today. It directs us to trace everywhere the processes of unfolding growth. And according to Darwin these processes are the methods of creative wisdom.

II. THE GROUNDLESSNESS OF ALL FEARS FROM THE TEACHING OF TRUE SCIENCE.

1. No honest criticism can destroy God's truth.

2. Evolution does not banish God or design from nature.

III. LESSONS FROM THE LIFE OF DARWIN.

1. Patience and perseverance in study. He accumulated facts, but he took time to reflect upon them before he formed them into systems. All great work is slow work.

2. Darwin loved nature, and therefore could interpret her.

3. Darwin lived a simple, true, and loving life.

(D. B. James.)

I. THE ORIGIN OF THE UNIVERSE.

1. The universe not self-existent, self-evolved, or eternal, but "created."

2. Brought into existence by the exercise of Divine power. "God created."

3. Stages in process of formation implied.

II. THE ORIGIN OF THE PRESENT ORDER OF OUR PLANET.

1. The chaotic condition of the planet described.

2. The Divine Author of the present order.

3. The first recorded fiat.

III. THE SUMMARY OF THE CREATIVE WEEK (Genesis 2:4-8). Lessons:

1. Learn the comprehensiveness of the opening sentence of the Bible.

2. Learn to appreciate this clear, refreshing, and authoritative declaration that the origin of the universe and of man is a personal, all-wise, almighty, and loving God.

3. Learn the lofty dignity of our primal spiritual nature in its identification with the ineffable nature of God.

4. Learn that to worship, love, and obey God, is our reasonable service.

(D. C. Hughes, M. A.)

I. A FUNDAMENTAL QUESTION. What is the origin of things? Perhaps the sublimest question mortal man can ask. A profoundly religious question, going down to the very roots of Truth, and Science, and Theology, and Character, and Worship.

II. THE PRECISE PROBLEM. It is not touching the shaping of matter already existing; it is touching the origin of matter itself.

III. IMMENSITY OF THE PROBLEM. The universe, practically speaking, is infinite.

IV. THE PROBLEM ITSELF. Here are sixty or seventy elements which, so far as we know at present, make up the existing universe. And the point to be exactly observed is this: not one solitary atom of these elements which make up the universe can man make. All that man can do is to operate on these elements, compounding them in various proportions, using the compounds in various ways, shaping them, building with them, and so on. In short, man must have something on which, as well as with which, to operate. Here, then, is the mighty question: "How account for this tremendous fact? Whence came this inconceivable amount of material?"

1. The question is legitimate. We cannot help asking it. Every effect must have a cause. Here is a stupendously measureless effect: what caused it? Not one man, not all mankind together, with the most perfect machinery conceivable, can make one solitary atom of matter. Where, then, did all this measureless, unutterable, inconceivable quantity of matter composing this material universe come from? Suppose you say it came from a few cells or germs, or perhaps one. That does not answer the question. The axiom, "Every effect must have a cause," implies another axiom: "Effects are proportional to their causes" — that is to say, causes are measured by their effects. If the whole material universe came from a few germs and from nothing else, then the weight of these germs must be equal to the weight of the universe. You cannot get out of a thing more than is in it.

2. Only two answers are possible.(1) The answer of logic. The first is this: Matter never had any origin at all; it has always existed. It is the one and only conclusion at which the logician, trusting solely to the logical processes and denying miracles, can possibly arrive.(2) The answer of Scripture. The other answer is the first verse of the Book of God: "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." Ah, here comes out the infinite difference between man and God: Man is only a builder, constructing with materials; God is a Creator, constructing without materials. God creates atoms; man fashions molecules.

3. Grandeur of the answer. Thus this word "create" is the divinest word in language, human or angelic. It is the august separatrix between the creature and the Creator, between the finite and the Infinite. Well, then, may our text stand forth as the opening sentence of God's communication to man. For all theology is wrapped up in this one simple, majestic word — Created. It gives us an unbeginning, almighty, personal, self-conscious, voluntary God.

4. Final cause of creation. Why did God create the material universe? Let us not be wise above what is written. And yet I cannot help thinking that there is a reason for the creation in the very constitution of our spiritual nature. We need the excitation of sensible objects. We need a material arena for self-discipline. As a matter of fact, we receive our moral training for eternity in the school of matter. It is the material world around us, coming into contact with our moral personalities through the senses of touching and seeing, and hearing and tasting, which tests our moral character. And so it comes to pass that the way in which we are impressed by every object we consciously see or touch probes us, and will testify for us or against us on the great day. But while this is one of the proximate causes of the creation, the final cause is the glory of God. It is the majestic mirror from which we see His invisible things, even His eternal power and Godhead (Romans 1:20).

(G. D. Boardman.)

I. THE MAKER OF THE WORLD, God. The great I AM. The First Cause.

II. THE MAKING OF THE WORLD.

1. By God's Word.

2. By God's Spirit.

III. THE MEANING OF THE WORLD. God created the world —

1. For His own pleasure and glory (Revelation 4:11).

2. For the happiness of all His creatures (Psalm 104).LESSONS:

1. Faith in God, as the Almighty, the All-wise Creator.

2. Reverence for God, as wonderful in all His doings.

3. Gratitude to God, as providing for the wants of His creatures.

(W. S. Smith, B. D.)

In Scripture, as well as in ordinary language, the word "earth" is used in two different meanings: sometimes it means the whole globe on which we live; and sometimes only the solid dust with which the globe is covered, which is supposed not to be much more than from nine to twelve miles in thickness.

1. The word "earth" is used to express the whole globe in the 1st verse of Genesis — "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth"; and it is so used also in the 40th chapter of Isaiah, verse 22; and again in the 26th chapter of Job, verse 7, where we are told that the Lord "hangeth the earth upon nothing."

2. The word "earth" is also used to express the solid and rocky crust with which our globe is everywhere covered, and on which rest the vast waters of the ocean. It is used in this sense in the 10th verse of the 1st chapter of Genesis: "God called the dry land earth." Earth is the dry land as distinguished from the sea; it means the continents and islands which appear above the waters.(1) You know that it is round.(2) We know that our earth goes round the sun once every year in an immense oval course, turning round upon itself at the same time as a ball does when it rolls along.(3) The earth has been measured. It is 25,000 miles all round, or in circumference, and nearly 8,000 miles straight through, or in diameter. You may imagine its size when I tell you that it has been reckoned that Mont Blanc, the highest mountain of Europe, is no larger when compared with the earth than the thickness of one of your hairs is to your head, or like a small grain of sand placed on a house twenty feet in height.(4) This earth, although covered all round with a solid crust, is all on fire within. Its interior is supposed to be a burning mass of melted, glowing metals, fiery gas, and boiling lava. This was mentioned in the Bible long before learned men had found it out for themselves by observation. It is spoken of in the Book of Job, about three thousand years ago (Job 28:5). We often read also in Scripture of the mountains being "melted like wax," rising and leaping like Iambs, and raised from the depths of the earth by the force of the inward fire (Psalm 97:5). We read in the Psalms of a time "before the mountains were brought forth" (Psalm 90:2); and we read also in Proverbs of a time "before the mountains were settled" (Proverbs 8:25), while they were yet being tossed and thrown up by the mighty power of fire. So great is the heat within the earth, that in Switzerland and other countries where the springs of water are very deep, they bring to the surface the warm mineral waters so much used for baths and medicine for the sick; and it is said that if you were to dig very deep down into the earth, the temperature would increase at the rate of a degree of the thermometer for every hundred feet, so that at the depth of seven thousand feet, or a mile and a half, all the water that you found would be boiling, and at the depth of about ten miles all the rocks would be melted.

(Prof. Gaussen.)

Creation is not caprice or chance. It is design. The footprints on the sands of time speak of design, for geology admits that her discoveries all are based upon design. And this verse, as the whole creation narrative, confirms the admission of science as to design. Therefore, both the Revelation of God and the Revelation of Nature go hand in hand. Which, then, is the higher? Surely, Revelation. And why?

1. Because Revelation alone can tell the design. Nature is a riddle without revelation. I may admire the intricate mechanism of machinery, or even part of the design hanging from the loom; but all is apparent confusion until the master takes me to the office, places plans before me, and so discloses the design. Revelation is that plan — that key by which man is able to unlock the arcana of nature's loom.

2. Because that design is the law of Christ. All are parts of one mighty creation, of which Christ is the centre.

(Wm. Adamson.)

I. VARIOUS KINDS OF BEGINNINGS.

1. Some beginnings are thoroughly evil, and their evil nature is beyond dispute. To begin to steal, however small the theft; to begin to lie, however trifling the falsehood; to begin selling things for what they are not, and by false weight and measure, however the deception may escape discovery; to begin to swear, however silent the oath may be kept; to begin dissolute practices, however trimly they may be dressed up.

2. Other beginnings are innocent, but such as are easily turned into an evil course. One begins to take proper recreation, and ends in a pleasure seeking, self-indulgent, idle, undutiful habit.

3. Other beginnings are a mixture of good and evil. It is undoubtedly well that a drunkard should become a total abstainer; but it is not an unmixed good when with his abstention he mingles self-righteous pride and unjust reflections on others.

4. Moreover, there are good beginnings whose good character is complete and unquestionable. It is always good to set ourselves, for Christ's sake, to do honestly, to work diligently, to show mercy, to pray believingly, to help and succour, and sympathize with one another. Every really Christian beginning is an entire good.

II. HOW BEGINNINGS ARE MADE.

1. Bad beginnings are made without forethought and resolve, without definite intention, choice, and premeditation; in a word, heedlessly.

2. Good beginnings are made with forethought, and election, and predetermination. "What shall I do with my life?" is a question for every man who would be right minded.(1) Good beginnings are made in the light. An enlightened choice is a first requisite.(2) Good beginnings are made with worthy ends in view.(3) Good beginnings are to be made earnestly. If our desire is for the beginning of the goodness of God in our characters, it is a desire which shames sloth.

(J. E. Gibberd.)

"In the corner of a little garden," said the late Dr. Beattie, of Aberdeen, "without informing any one of the circumstance, I wrote in the mould with my finger the initial letters of my son's name, and sowed garden cress in the furrows, covered up the seed, and smoothed the ground. Ten days after this he came running up to me, and with astonishment in his countenance told me his name was growing in the garden. I laughed at the report, and seemed to disregard it, but he insisted on my going to see what had happened. "Yes," said I carelessly, "I see it is so, but what is there in this worth notice? Is it not mere chance?" "It cannot be so," he said, "somebody must have contrived matters so as to produce it." "Look at yourself," I replied, "and consider your hands and fingers, your legs and feet; came you hither by chance?" "No," he answered, "something must have made me." "And who is that something?" I asked. He said, "I don't know." I therefore told him the name of that Great Being who made him and all the world. This lesson affected him greatly, and he never forgot it or the circumstances that introduced it."

Twenty years ago, when Christian missions scarcely existed in Japan, a young Japanese of good family met with a book on geography in the Chinese language, which had been compiled by an American missionary in China. It began with these words: "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth." What could this mean? Who was that God? Certainly He was not known in Japan; perhaps He might live in America, whence the author of the book came. The young man determined to go to America and seek for God. He left Japan secretly, at the peril of his life; for the old law was then still in force, under which death was the penalty incurred by any Japanese who quitted his country. He made his way to China, and thence to the United States. There, after some perplexing experiences, he did find the God he had been seeking, and with his whole heart embraced the faith of Christ. That young man, Joseph Nisima, is now Principal of a Native Christian College at Kioto, the ancient sacred capital of Japan.

(E. Stock.)

Napoleon the First, with all his disdain for men, bowed to one power that he was pleased to regard as greater than himself. In the heart of an atheistic age he replied to the smattering theorists of his day, "Your arguments gentlemen, are very fine. But who," pointing up to the evening sky, "who made all these?" And even the godless science of our times, while rejecting the scriptural answer to this question, still confesses that it has no other to give. "The phenomena of matter and force," says Tyndall, "lie within our intellectual range; and as far as they reach we will, at all hazard, push our inquiries. But behind, and above, and around all, the real mystery of the universe lies unsolved, and as far as we are concerned, is incapable of solution." But why incapable of solution? Why not already solved, so far as we are concerned, in this "simple, unequivocal, exhaustive, majestic" alpha of the Bible — "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth"?

(J. B. Clark.)

A suggestive scene took place lately in a railway car that was crossing the Rocky Mountains. A quiet business man, who with the other passengers, had been silently watching the vast range of snow-clad peaks, by him seen for the first time, said to his companion: "No man, it seems to me, could look at that scene without feeling himself brought nearer to his Creator." A dapper lad of eighteen, who had been chiefly engaged in caressing his moustache, pertly interrupted, "If you are sure there is a Creator." "You are an atheist," said the stranger, turning to the lad. "I am an agnostic," raising his voice. "I am investigating the subject. I take nothing for granted. I am waiting to be convinced. I see the mountains, I smell the rose, I hear the wind; therefore, I believe that mountains, roses, and wind exist. But I cannot see, smell, or hear God. Therefore —" A grizzled old cattle raiser glanced over his spectacles at the boy. "Did you ever try to smell with your eyes?" he said, quietly. "No." "Or hear with your tongue, or taste with your ears?" "Certainly not." "Then why do you try to apprehend God with faculties which are only meant for material things?" "With what should I apprehend Him?" said the youth, with a conceited giggle. "With your intellect and soul? — but I beg your pardon" — here he paused — "some men have not breadth and depth enough of intellect and soul to do this, This is probably the reason that you are an agnostic." The laugh in the car effectually stopped the display of any more atheism that day.

When Mr. Simeon, of Cambridge, was on his dying bed, his biographer relates that, "After a short pause, he looked round with one of his bright smiles, and asked, 'What do you think especially gives me comfort at this time? The creation! Did Jehovah create the world, or did I? I think He did; now, if He made the world, He can sufficiently take care of me.'"

Systems of nature! To the wisest man, wide as is his vision, nature remains of quite infinite depth, of quite infinite expansion; and all experience thereof limits itself to some few computed centuries and square miles, The course of nature's phases, on this our little fraction of a planet, is partially known to us, but who knows what deeper courses these depend on! What infinitely larger cycle (of causes) our little epicycle revolves on! To the minnow every cranny and pebble, and quality and accident, of its little native creek may have become familiar; but does the minnow understand the ocean tides and periodic currents, the trade winds and monsoons, and moon's eclipses; by all which the condition of its little creek is regulated?

(T. Carlyle.)

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