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murky atmosphere above. But slowly these vapors are condensing, and settling down upon the surface of the earth. The clouds are slowly dissipating; the air is purer, clearer; and, at last-joy to the world!-the sunlight pierces through, and, like a new creation to the unconscious world below, the ruler of the day appears in all his glory, majesty, and power. The great trees thrill with new life as they catch the first invigorating ray. Millions of buds expand, and burst, and blossom. Pale little flowerets turn their faces heavenward, and their petals are suffused with new and gorgeous colors. The whole earth smiles a welcome to the sun. Then night comes, and the moon and stars appear in all their wondrous brilliancy. Thus there are lights now in the firmament to divide between the day and night, for signs, and for set times, and for days and years, and to illumine unto the earth.
9. With this new source of light and heat, the earth can now support higher forms of life. Hitherto the vegetable has been the only organism, now animal life begins. In singular harmony with the sacred record, geology has opened out the fact that the first animals were water species, such as shell-fish, corals, and the like; and the rocks testify to the teeming abun. dance of these forms of life; whole mountains are composed of their remains. Then fishes filled the seas; and, after these, amphibious animals, such as frogs and salamanders, often of enormous size, appeared. As the conditions of the earth became adapted to their support, still higher forms of animals were created, "until there were reptiles larger than whales in the water, immense leviathan reptiles on the land, and flying reptiles in the air."*
Compare with this the language of Genesis:-"Then said Elohim: Let the waters creep with creeping things, animals of life and let flying things fly above the earth on the face of the firmament of the heavens. And Elohim created sea monsters-great ones-and all the animals of life, the moving things, with which crept the waters, after their kind, and every
* Science and the Bible, pp. 119, 120.
flying thing of wing after its kind. was good."
And Elohim saw that it
We are not to suppose that the narrative implies that every species of plant was created before any species of animal began to exist, nor that none of the marine or amphibious types were created after the first land animals appeared. The account is rather one of the successive inauguration of the several kingdoms, than of the historical development of tribes; and the enumerations given are simply to define these kingdoms, by the mention of their more common and best known representatives.
Some have objected to the Mosaic narrative "that terrestrial reptiles seem to have preceded birds in their order of appearance upon the earth." To this we answer that the presumptive evidence is strongly in favor of the prior creation of birds, from the fact that they could be supported long before the land was ready for "terrestrial reptiles." Consider the fact that on ocean islands, so barren as to be utterly unable to support terrestrial life, millions of sea fowl build their nests, and get their sustenance from the water. There are, moreover, reasons why direct evidence of the existence of birds, prior to land animals, is wanting. Even in the tertiary periods, where we know that birds as well as land quadrupeds abounded, the remains of the former are usually wanting. This circumstance is thus explained by Sir Charles Lyell: "for their powers of flight insure them against perishing by numerous casualties, to which quadrupeds are exposed during floods; and if they chance to be drowned, or to die when swimming on the water, it will scarcely ever happen that they will be submerged, so as to become preserved in sedimentary deposits. In consequence of the hollow tubular structure of their bones, and the quantity of their feathers, they are extremely light in proportion to their volume; so that when first killed they do not sink to the bottom like quadrupeds, but float on the surface until the carcass either rots away, or is devoured by predaceous animals."*
The want of positive evidence being thus accounted for, and in the absence of all opposing evidence, the presumptive argu
* Principles of Geology, Chap. xlvii, p. 749.
ment sustains the narrative in Genesis in its statement of the order of creation.
10. But although the waters and the air were filled with life throughout this period, the species were widely different from those which now populate the earth. "Not a species of the thousands of those ages now exists."* They had been created successively, as adapted to corresponding conditions of the globe, the climate of which must have been torrid from the equator to the poles. As the process of refrigeration went on, however, these species would die out, and become extinct; while others of higher form, and adapted to the new conditions, would take their places. In this succession, the earth was reduced, at last, to nearly its present temperature and physical conditions; and the divine command went forth, which peopled it with now-existing species. "The beast of the earth after its kind, and the cattle after its kind, and all the creeping things of the ground after their kind," are created and multiplied. Animals of a higher order of intelligence than any hitherto existing are made for the service of man. To him, as the crowning work, the whole creative plan has been tending; and, now that all is ready, man appears, the last and noblest work, made in the image of God, and endowed with dominion and power over all creatures. With him the work of creation ceased. "Science has no evidence that any living species have been created since the appearance of man on the globe. All facts in nature accord with the Scripture record, that man was the last of the grand series."+
11. Hence, finally, according to science, the present period is one of rest. Forces already brought into being are still in operation: animal and vegetable life increase and multiply, and the laws of matter are working countless changes in the condition of the globe. But no new forces are created. The work of creation is ended. The creator has ceased from his work, has blessed it; and we are living in his sabbath.
One of the most eminent philosophers of our day remarks, reviewing the successive steps in the history of creation:"The first great period of history, was the period of mere + Ibid., p. 128.
* Science and the Bible, p. 121.
material existence and physical progress. Its beginning was far away in the dim, indefinite past, when light announced the work of progress begun; and even beyond, in the forceless matter of preceding time; after many changes and evolutions, it blossomed in the lands and seas and vegetation of the third day. The second great period was the period of life and organic progress. Its germs are traced in the vegetation of the former period; but the light of the sun first gave vigor to its growth; and after various developments progressing through long ages, it finally blossomed in the mammals and man on the sixth day. The third great period is the more exalted period of spirit and spiritual progress, whose germs are even now expanding in the soul of man; but whose flowers and fruit will appear only in time to come."*
Or as Lord Bacon has beautifully said: "The first creature of God, in the works of the days, was the light of the sense, the last was the light of reason, and his sabbath work, ever since, is the illumination of his spirit. First he breathed light upon the face of the matter, or chaos, then he breathed light into the face of man; and still he breatheth and inspireth light into the face of his chosen."+
How long this sabbath shall continue, who can tell? We know not how soon the present order of things may come to an end. But we may well keep in mind the admonition of Saint Peter:-"The day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness, looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat? Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.":
12. This review of the harmony between the results.of modern science and the statements of the ancient document before
* Dana: Science and the Bible, pp. 127, 128. Essay I, Of Truth.
2 Peter iii, 10—13.
us, would be incomplete without some mention of the evidence which archæology has brought to light, that the seventh day was from the beginning set apart as holy to God. The great point at issue between those who believe, and those who deny the divine origin of the sabbath, has been whether the cosmogonies of early nations were derived from those of Genesis, or whether that of Genesis was derived from Egyptian or Chaldæan records. If we consider Moses as the author of that account of the creation, with which the book of Genesis begins, it is certainly more rational to presume, other things being equal, that the illiterate Hebrews got their knowledge and ideas from their Egyptian masters, than that the wise men of Egypt were instructed by their lowest slaves. But, even then, the fact that the Egyptian and Chaldæan cosmogonies, so far as we know anything of them, are wide of the truth, containing only traces of it here and there, while that of the Hebrews is in wonderful accordance with the known realities of things, would forbid us to assume that the latter was merely a copy of, or deduction from, the former. If we have two records, one intact and true, the other containing scarcely a trace of truth amid a mass of speculative error, we should rather say that the traces of truth in the latter record evinced a prior knowledge of the former, than that the former, or true record, was copied from the false. But the cosmogonies of the Egyp tians, Chaldæans, Hindoos and other early nations are so wide of the truth, so fanciful and so absurd, that nothing like a correct account of the creation could be deduced from them; indeed, so far from suggesting that of Genesis, they would actually forbid it. On the other hand we have seen that the Mosaic cosmogony accords with scientific facts so far as the limitations, under which it was given, would permit. Is it not, then, most natural to conclude, in the absence of opposing evidence, that the latter is the original and authentic record, and that the traces of similarity, which occur in other ancient records, do but evince a prior knowledge of this first document of Genesis. The critical evidence already cited, that this document is older than Moses, coming down to him from the time of our first parents, altogether favors this conclusion.
It is important here to observe that the division of days into