meration of its sensible qualities; and in like manner we prove the existence of mind, by a consideration of mental phenomena. We know we possess a body, by the evidence of our senses; and equally sure are we that we possess a inind, of a substance differing from the body, because we think, feel, remember, compare, reason, judge, will, &c. No proof can exceed this, and it is as conclusive in the one case as in the other. With these remarks in support of the doctrine of man's spiritual nature, we proceed

II. To the arguments furnished by reason and revelation to establish the soul's immortality. As our limits are prescribed, we shall not be able to give more than a general outline; and in doing this we will first listen to the voice of reason.

1. It seems necessary to allow a conscious existence in another and future state to justify the ways of God to man. God is a universal governor; and, as he is an infinitely good and just being, he must be a righteous governor. But if we confine our views of his administration to the present lise, his government cannot be justified. God being infinitely perfect, his laws must be perfect; his laws being perfect, they must have an equal bearing upon his subjects : but if his administration be confined to the narrow precincts of this world, his laws and government bear most unequally, and there is no remedy. In this world, for the most part, the wicked bear rule. They are lofty in their claims, unjust and oppressive in their measures. Virtue is persecuted, down-trodden; and often receives the punishment due to crime. Where is the remedy, if the empire of God extends not beyond this life? We must change our views of the goodness of God, and the equity and impartiality of his proceedings; or enlarge the field of his operations, and give his government a broader sweep, that it may embrace both time and eternity. And if the government of God must pass over from this to another state that its perfect results may be unfolded, the existence of man must be perpetuated that he may reap the benefit of a perfect administration.

2. The credibility of man's future existence is supported by the analogy of nature. Almost every department of animated nature furnishes us with examples of a transition from one state of existence to another, as remarkable, and, before experience has established its certainty, as incredible, as any that can be supposed necessary to man that he may live in a future state. Not to dwell

the examples usually employed upon this subject, we will refer only to a single illustration-man himself. That man in the embyro or infantile state should pass into a new world, or rise from helpless infancy to the active business man, the warrior, the


statesman, the philosopher, the orator, would be as incredible before the demonstration of experience, as that man as he now is should make his transit from this to a conscious future state. And the change he experiences in passing from the embryo or infantile state to the condition of perfect manhood is as great as that which we can suppose necessary that he may inhabit another world. But the change first mentioned, however incredible before experience, is a common and obvious fact, and hence excites no surprise. It follows, therefore, as man is in this life the subject of a change as great as may be necessary to introduce him to another life, it can never be incredible that he should pass through that other change, live in another world, and move in a higher and better sphere."

3. The supposition of man's future state is further strengthened by the fact that the soul cannot be affected by the power of death. We cannot argue against the immortality of the soul from the nature of death, because we know nothing of its nature. And we cannot argue against the immortality of the soul from the effects of death, unless we can prove the soul to be a compounded substance. We see the effect of death upon the body. It is decomposed, resolved into its original elements. We are sure the body is dead; but we cannot say this of the soul. It is true we lose sensible communion with the mind that once animated the body; but it is not because the mind has ceased to exist, or has lost any of its original powers, but because of the dissolution of the material organ through which it made itself known to the external world. Moreover, the soul being a simple, indivisible essence or substance, not subject to the laws which govern matter, and hence indissoluble, cannot be affected by the power of death. For all that death can do, then, the soul may live for ever. Indeed, as our first introduction to this world was the vacation of our first sphere, or the incipient state of our being, that we might enjoy another more ample; so it seems to accord well both with philosophy and reason that death should be to us a sort of second birth, a vacation of our present sphere for one still more ample in means and opportunities for developing the capacities of our natures.

4. And this high destiny of the soul may be still further supported by a consideration of the nature and adaptation of its powers. It is capable of memory, reflection, imagination, contemplation, volition, reason, and of being moved with religious veneration. Most, if not all, these modes of the manifestation of mind are in

See Butler's Analogy, where this point is illustrated in a most ample, able, and forcible manner.


their proper sense peculiar to man. And another peculiarity is that improvement of which the powers of the soul are susceptible. Brutes soon reach their zenith. There is with them no commencement to learn, and indefinite progression in knowledge and mechanical skill: their little all of knowledge flows in at once. Not so with man. “There is not a voluntary muscular movement, from that of the infant holding a spoon to the most skillful use of the hands and fingers in the nicest and most curious arts, where there is not a beginning of skill, and then a gradual growth toward perfection, induced by intense and persevering efforts on the part of the will to work according to some purpose or aim of the intelli

Under favorable circumstances “the patriarch pupil” goes on improving the powers of his mind, and enlarging the boundaries of mental vision, even to the sunset of human life; and, for aught we know, may continue to do so world without end. Also, the mind is adapted to the contemplation of subjects of an eternal nature. For instance, the idea of eternal duration. We have no evidence that any being made to inhabit this world, except man, can take in this idea, or pursue it a single step. To this we may add the moral government of God, and the infinite attributes of his nature. These are boundless subjects, involving considerations which pass beyond the present sphere of human activity, and afford eternal employment for immortal minds. It seems reasonable to suppose, therefore, that minds fitted by original constitution for the investigation and contemplation of such subjects should be immortal; otherwise there is no adequate opportunity for a full development of their powers, or to move in that elevated sphere for which their capabilities have prepared them. The mind is formed to contemplate the attributes, works, and government of God, and to be religiously affected by the survey. is it reasonable to suppose that just as we begin to open our eyes upon the wonderful works of God, and to appreciate the evidences of his “eternal power and godhead,” they will be closed to these subjects for ever? That the emotions of veneration and gratitude we feel rising within us toward the Author of our being, in view of his glorious perfections and bountiful goodness, will be checked and annihilated before they come to maturity? That just as we begin to develop the lofty attributes of mind in laudable pursuits, the corruscating fires of genius will be quenched in eternal night? That the aspiring soul, animated with the desire of immortality, will be suddenly checked in its upward tendency, and fall into nothingness? Is this reasonable? Is it not rather reasonable that

Tappan on the Will, vol. iii, page 58.

we do but throw aside the old dress to assume a new one, and change our place of residence to pursue the objects of our being under circumstances of a more favorable character ?

5. That the soul will live in immortality may be argued from its innate and indomitable desire for such destiny. By indulgence man may possess himself of many artificial appetites and desires, which are in no important respect necessary to his happiness; but so far as his desires are innate he cannot be happy without their gratification. Among his innate desires we may reckon the aspiration for immortality. This is universal. It is a concomitant of all forms of religion, and of every degree of civilization. It has its form of expression as well in the gloom of heathenism as the cheerful light of Christianity. The magnificent pyramids and rock-hewn tombs of Egypt are the outward imbodiment of this "longing after immortality." The mind may be in darkness and doubt as to the fact, but the desire still lingers, until depravity perverts our natures, and our crimes make us afraid to live.* The desire being inherent in our constitution, God is its author; and God being its author, he must have intended its gratification. For it is not supposable that God would give us a constitution, out of which arises naturally, and necessarily, the desire—the prospect of perpetual life-and provide no corresponding reality. The indulgence of such a thought would be a reflection upon the divine character. The bare fact that God has given us this ambition to live is itself a sure and certain pledge of an endless state of being.

“ Else whence this pleasing hope, this fond desire,

This longing after immortality ?
Or whence this secret dread, and inward horror
Of falling into naught? Why shrinks the soul
Back on herself, and startles at destruction ?
'Tis the divinity that stirs within us;
'Tis Heaven itself that points out an hereafter,

And intimates eternity to man.”-Addison's Cato. Without pretending to have given more than a brief synopsis of the argument from reason, our limits oblige us to check this train of thought here, and close by introducing the testimony of divine revelation.

6. The testimony of Holy Writ would be conclusive without any other ; but supported as it is by arguments of another kind, it has peculiar force. Its voice is clear and distinct in the announcement of man's immortality.

Fear of future retribution may overrule, or suppress, though it cannot annihilate, the desire for immortality.

First. It reveals the existence of spirit unconnected with matter. This it is true is a fact which now commends itself to our reason; but whether reason would have been able to discover it without the aid of revelation is very questionable. “God is a spirit,” is the language of the Bible: a spirit who exists “from everlasting to everlasting ;" whose influence is diffused through infinite space, and whose intelligence is seen in the formation and government of the universe. We have another example in the revelation given us of angels, who are denominated “ministering spirits ;” and whose employment, and proximity to the throne of the uncreated God, prove they cannot be invested with corporeal natures like our own. But if intelligent spirits do exist unconnected with matter, we need not suppose the intelligent spirit of man in any sense dependent upon matter for its existence.

Second. The Bible goes further, and reveals the conscious existence of man in a future state. The fathers, where are they? Where are Enoch and Elijah, who went to heaven in a supernatural way? Where are faithful Abraham, pious Isaac, and wrestling Jacob? Our Lord tells us, “God is not the God of the dead, but of the living ;” and yet he announces himself “the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob." The bodies of these old patriarchs crumbled to dust inore than three thousand years ago, and yet they live in heaven, pure and spotless--they dwell in the presence of the God who made them. In regard to the future condition of infants, the Saviour remarks, “Their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven.” And again, to the thief upon the cross, “To-day shalt thou be with me in paradise.” But enough upon this point : man lives in a future state.

Third. Finally, the Scriptures declare the eternity of man's future state. This we learn emphatically from the manner in which they speak of the rewards and punishments of men in another world. These are described in language which indicates being without end. The phrases, "eternal weight of glory,” " eternal damnation," "everlasting punishment,” “everlasting life," "eternal life," &c., establish with a clearness and authority indisputable the immortality of man as a subject of future retribution. Indeed, the whole gospel scheme proceeds upon the supposition that man is destined to a future and endless existence, without which much of it would be entirely unmeaning; and it is this fact that gives such tremendous weight to the sanctions by which obedience to its claims is enforced.

A just appreciation of the subject discussed in this article cannot fail to impress upon the mind the most lofty ideas of the dignity,

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