mediate space will pass like a dream, or like a tale that is told. How much, therefore, is it our duty and our interest, to live, seeking, obeying, and supporting the truth :-how much resignation, and fortitude, and hope, will be derived to us in the trying hour of dissolution, from the reflection that we have not despised the precepts of truth-that we have not been indifferent to its cause-that we have not lived in vain!





Revelation essential to man's temporal and spiritual welfare.-Its advantages in several particulars pointed out. Of the genuineness of the ancient scriptures.-Objections to their genuineness considered.Reasons for ascribing the several books to their reputed authors. Difficulties necessarily attendant upon determining the authenticity of books of such high antiquity.-Not such as to warrant the indecent attacks of the unbeliever.-Authenticated by heathen testimony.Jewish testimony.-Internal evidence. Of the canon of scripture.General review of several other species of evidence in favour of the authenticity of the Jewish scriptures.-Superiority of the scriptures as a history of the Creation, Deluge, Origin of Nations, and the transactions of the early ages.-Objections to the Mosaical account of the Creation considered.-Objections to the Mosaical account of the Deluge considered.-Objections of Geologists considered.-Agreement of the Jewish scriptures with the facts of both natural and civil history.-Objection.s against certain relations in the scriptures considered.-Divinity of the scriptures proved from the fulfilment of the prophecies contained therein.-Divinity of the scriptures proved from the excellency of the doctrines and precepts contained therein. Compared with heathen morals and theology.-Consequent superiority of the moral and religious condition of the Jews.-The Jews afford perpetual evidence of the truth of their scriptures to all nations.-Essentially different from other nations and tribes that have preserved their ancient institutions.-Chinese.-Hindus.—Arabs.—~~


No advantage derived to the cause of unbelief by denying the more ancient part of the history of the Jews, and admitting the later part of the history of that people, which is almost equally miraculous.— Defects observable in the scripture history not such as to tarnish the Justre of its excellencies.-The Bible, with respect to much of its contents, the work of man, recording the deeds of men, and, therefore, necessarily interspersed with the history of much folly, imperfection, and crime. Not to be judged in detached parts, but by its general tenor.

Ir might, perhaps, be shown, that some extraordinary aid, equivalent to a revelation, was necessary to the welfare, if not to the prolonged existence, of the first human beings, on their coming from the hands of the Creator. For although man is a very superior being to the rest of the animal creation, and is enabled, much more effectually than they, to adopt means for securing the preservation, sustenance, and comfort of life, when under the guidance of an intellect, whose peculiar properties have been called forth by experience, discipline, and instruction of various kinds, he would, nevertheless, be a weak destitute creature, in comparison with the lower animals, if this distinctive property of his nature had never received the impressions necessary to make it available to the purposes for which it was bestowed. In the latter destitute condition, man must have been originally placed in the world, if some kind of extraordinary aid, sufficient to direct him to the means of securing his welfare, which is equivalent to a revelation, had not been granted him. For man is not, nor can we suppose him ever to have been, possessed of that property of the

brute which we call instinct, and which, without experience in the animal, unerringly directs it to what is beneficial, and which, with equal certainty, teaches it to avoid those things that are hurtful. Man acquires this knowledge chiefly by instruction he would perish in the attempt to acquire it by experience. Therefore, even as far as man's animal welfare is considered, it appears that revelation, or some aid equivalent thereunto, was necessary to him on coming from the hands of his Creator. But how important soever revelation may seem to have been to man, regarding him merely as one of the animal creation, it is, in its applicability to his circumstances and wants as an intellectual being, that its peculiar advantages are perceived. In fact, if revelation be a fable, man was not only, originally, in a worse condition than the rest of the animal creation, but he is, during all times of his existence, less amply provided for than they. For the world, replete as it is with every thing adapted to the full enjoyment of the sensual nature, is deficient in what does more particularly, indeed exclusively, apply, to the desires and wants of the intellectual. The creatures, which possess only the properties of the animal life, do, in an especial manner, belong to the world; they are, as it were, a kind of animated 'clods of the valley.' They have no views beyond the present time, no desires beyond the satisfying of the grosser appetites, no hopes stretching out into the future. Man, in comparison with them, seems to be a creature of another sphere. He demands satisfactions of a higher order, and of a

more durable kind, than any which the world has to offer him. Even the things which are best adapted to his nature, and are most worthy of his contemplation and desire, disappoint his expectation. His inquiries, respecting subjects the most interesting to an intellectual being, lead to no certain knowledge. On every side appear fluctuation, and transitoriness, and dissolution; and he seeks permanency, and life, and immortality. By no aid, which nature affords him, can he penetrate the darkness and mystery which envelope his condition; and, seeing that his superior powers do not even exempt him from the fate of the brute, but that he fleeth as a shadow and continueth not,' he is tempted to believe that man was made in vain.

But if these remarks apply to the most fortunate earthly condition, unblessed with revelation; and if vanity and insufficiency are the accompaniments of 'man's best estate;' how much more vain and ineffectual do the things of the world, and the knowledge which the world affords, prove, in the various trials and distresses incident to human nature. How little amends can they make for the thefts of time! How little security can they afford against the attacks of disease! How little consolation in the hour of bereavement! How little hope in the prospect of dissolution! How mute they are to his most anxious inquiries, and niggard to his most urgent wants! Yea, they do seem but to deceive hope, and mock misfortune, and trifle with sorrow, and add to the pangs of a wounded spirit!

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