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Observer, Aug. 1, 71.

answer.

were they placed therein. This first class consists of some forty small boys and girls; is taught by one female teacher, aided by two young assistants, whose duty is that of promoting order and attention. The time for meeting is three o'clock in the afternoon, and the place, the end gallery of the chapel, where the seats are so arranged as to give elevation to each row over that below it. The instruction is so far upon the simultaneous method, that the whole class repeats scripture lessons, in the most simple form, sentence by sentence after the teacher.

Then a scripture narrative, adapted to the young, is recited, explained, and enforced, followed by considerable questioning—the questioning in the first instance being answered simultaneously and subsequently repeated and answered singly by those who stretch forth the hand as indicating ability to

Such of the children as are able to learn verses at home are encouraged so to do, and to repeat them before the class. Children's melodies enliven the proceedings. In opening the class the teacher implores the blessing and help of God, and in closing it prays protection and blessing for the children during their absence in the every-day scenes of this changing life.

The second and third classes are for Bible reading and study. They meet in the school room at the same hour. In the second class the New Testament is read, a verse each, explanation being given by the teacher. After reading he questions the class, and questions are put by the class which the teacher passes round for answers, or himself replies to, as deemed desirable. In the third class the reading is by paragraphs, that is of the chapter selected, by pre-arrangement, for reading, bearing upon a subject to be examined. After the reading each scholar is, in due order, invited to point to some other portion of Scripture bearing upon the topic under consideration. In both of these classes considerable attention is given to committing Scripture to memory, and at the periodical examinations not only whole chapters but several chapters in succession are repeated ; and it may be, did time permit, that some would repeat an entire Gospel or one of the longer Epistles.

Two classes meet on Lord's-day Morning at nine o'clock. They are not composed of children, but mainly of young persons; some quite advanced in life attend them. It will be necessary, shortly, to change the hour of one of them, as several who now only attend the one desire to join the other also. The one class restricts itself to the Evidences of Christianity, going through certain regular courses of study, as indicated by suitable standard books (selected by the committee), guided by a teacher who has well trodden the ground before. The leading popular objections of the Infidel schools are fairly considered, and the proper refutation supplied. Those who fully attend to the instruction imparted in this class will be able to enter İnfidel halls and find themselves prepared to detect the fallacies and refute the arguments of the professional opponents of our common faith. This class includes many members of the church, most of its young members, and a good many young persons not members of any church, and a fair proportion of the

sons and daughters of members. The other class has a rather wide range. It embraces the plan of salvation as revealed in the Bible. It has as a text book (not to be slavishly followed), " The Scheme of Redemption," by President Milligan. All new members of the church are urged to take at least one course in this class.

The only other class, at present, in operation consists of a few brethren and two or three others, who meet before breakfast on Lord's-day morning

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for the study of Greek. Each class is opened by prayer. Seats are apportioned in the chapel on the Lord's-day morning for the members of the afternoon Bible classes, and for such of the elder of the first or infant class, as may be old enough to attend and whose parents desire their presence.

Such, then, is my Sunday school. No doubt it is open to improvement and enlargement. But I am persuaded that Sunday schools that move not in this direction will considerably waste their labour and leave undone what they ought to do. The Sunday schools, generally, regret that after having taught the children they lose them just when they should be bound to the church. I submit that my Sunday school supplies the missing link.

D. K.

Literature.

DESIGN IN NATURE.*

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“In demanding the right to regard man as the fourth kingdom of nature, I am aware that some may demur to the claim. No doubt he must take rank in the kingdom of the animals, by reason of his identity with animals in all the vital functions. Disparaging things have been said of his brain ; and Moleschott has remarked, I think, that all its finest things, are but modified phosphorus after all. No phosphorus, no thinking ! The slight projection on the outer margin of the ear has lately assumed portentous proportions. The possession of that precious relic, which has turned up suddenly like the locket of the long lost child in a stimulating novel, proves our kinship to the Simian race, from some balder specimens of which we are supposed to have descended, and gives us a place on an unsuspected family tree. But, after all that has been said by the naturalists to teach us humility, there do remain some facts, which entitle man to a separate place, to one at least of which the modern school have given greater prominence than before. They are these. Man can control nature. He can read nature and understand it. He has a power of selfregulation, which we call conscience. “And he can and does think much about God.

As to the power of man to control nature, I prefer to employ the words of Mr. Wallace, one of the first to put forward what is called the law of natural selection,' who will not be suspected of claiming any transcen. dental place or privilege for man. · With a naked and unprotected body,' he says, man's intelligence gave him clothing against the varying inclemencies of the seasons. Though unable to compete with the deer in swiftness, or with the wild bull in strength, it has given him weapons wherewith to capture and overcome both. Though less capable than most other animals of living on the herbs and the fruits which unaided nature supplies, this wonderful faculty taught him to govern and direct nature to his own benefit, and to make her produce food for him when and where he pleased. From the moment when the first skin was used as a covering, when the first rude spear was formed to assist in the chase, the first seed sown or root planted, a grand revolution was effected in nature, a revolution which in all the previous ages of the world had had no parallel,

* From a Lecture by the ARCHBISHOP OF YORK, delivered in connection with the Christian Eridence Society, April, 1871.

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Observer, Aug. 1, '71.

for a being had arisen who was no longer necessarily subject to change with the changing universe, a being who was, in some degree, superior to nature, inasmuch as he kriew how to control and regulate her action, and could keep himself in harmony with her, not by a change in body, but by an advance in mind. Here, then, we see the true grandeur and dignity of man.

On this view of his special attributes we may admit that even those who claim for him a position and an order, a class or a sub-kingdom by himself, have some reason on their side. He is indeed a being apart, since he is not influenced by the great laws which irresistibly modify all other organic beings. Nay, more, this victory which he has gained for himself gives him a directing influence over other existences. Man has not only escaped natural selection himself, but he is actually able to take away some of that power from nature which before his appearance she universally exercised. We can anticipate the time when the earth will produce only cultivated plants and domestic animals; when man's selection shall have supplanted natural selection; and when the ocean will be the only domain in which that power can be exerted, which for countless cycles of

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supreme over the earth.'* Thus eloquently and forcibly speaks Mr. Wallace; and I do not stop now to criticise the exaggeration of language which treats. the law of natural selection as supreme ruler of the earth. Let me say a few words next upon man's power to reflect on, and to understand nature. For this was the second mark by which man was distinguished from the animal creation, with which he has so much in common.

Man alone is capable of an unselfish interest in the world around him; that is, an interest that does not bear immediately on his bodily wants. How far he has carried this interest, let modern science bear witness. The common feat of foretelling all the eclipses of sun and moon for a given year, is performed for our almanac yearly, without exciting surprise or gratitude. Yet it means that man can so follow the heavenly bodies in their path, for years and years to come, for all the years that are gone, that he can tell, without fear of error, on what day the cone of shadow thrown by the sun-lighted earth into space, shall sweep over the face of the moon and blot out her light, completely or a little. But this is an old triumph, hardly worth quoting, but for its aptness to impress all kinds of minds. A clerk in one of our public offices, using only such leisure as office work allowed, has told us lately wonders about the composition of the sun; and here in London, armed with a little instrument (the spectroscope), this distinguished man has been able to ascertain that in yonder photosphere the same elements are found which the chemist seeks and finds in the crust of our little earth. What proofs can be more convincing of the fitness of man to play his part in the scene in which he is placed ? His senses are adapted to the facts he is to observe ; his eye to light, his ear to sonorous vibrations, his touch to resistance and to weight. But the naked organ soon falls short of his wishes. And soon the microscope unfolds the beautiful forms of the Polycystina shells, the minute fibril of the muscle, and the components of the blood of life. The telescope

. brings near the world of stars, and resolves the bright mist into clusters of distinct orbs. The balance weighs quantities of matter too small for the touch to appreciate. And lastly, the spectroscope takes the picture, so to speak, of chemical phenomena too distant to be realised by these means; and so the composition of the heavenly bodies, about which the

* Mr. Wallace, in the "Anthropological Journal,” 1864; see also Lubbock’s “Prehistoric Times," last chapter.

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Observer, Aug. 1, 71.

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most sangnine observer twenty years ago would have admitted that we should never know anything firmer than conjecture, is already the subject of exact observation.

The last mark of nian, that distinguishes him from all animals is, that he believes in God. One half the human race at this moment profess some creed in which God is the great first cause, the Creator and Governor of the world. Of the other half, hardly any are quite without religion. • Obliged as I am,' says M. Quatrefages, in words which I have had occasion to quote elsewhere, even by my education, to pass in review the races of men, I have sought for atheism in the lowest and in the highest, but nowhere have I met with it, except in an individual, or at most in some school of men, more or less known, as we have seen in Europe in the last century, and as we see at the present day. Everywhere and always the masses of the people have escaped it. But for my present argument it is not necessary to insist that a right belief in God prevails. There is a belief in God, and it cannot bave come from experience or observation of visible facts. You may lower the position of man by comparing him to the apes, and by chemical analysis of his brain ; all the more wonderful is it that a creature in such sorry case should pretend to hold communion with the divine. His feet are in the earthy clay, but his head is lifted up towards heaven. Heir to a hundred maladies, the sport of a hundred passions, holding on this life, so chequered in its complexion, but for a few days, this creature cries out of his trouble : • God exists; and he can see and hear me.'

Man, if I have proved my position, stands quite alone at the head of the kingdoms of nature, alone in his power of controlling it, alone in his appreciation of its beauty, alone in the self-government of conscience, the first of all the creatures of God, to pronounce the name of Him who had made all things, in a world which for ages had been blind to its Maker, and thankless because blind.

Now it has become, and will probably continue to be, a question of the deepest interest to mankind, how these four kingdoms came into being. And at present there is a tendency towards a theory purely material and mechanical. It is so in Germany, the county of Büchner, Vogt, and Moleschott; it is so in France, where Comte and Littre have written; it is so here in England, where it is needless to quote distinguished names. I purpose, in the remainder of this lecture, to attempt an interpretation of the facts before us, quite different from this prevalent notion; and also to show how vicious and how inadequate in a scientific point of view the system known as materialism appears to be. The time is all too short for such a purpose : but any address like this can only aim to scatter germs of thought, not to present a system.

That the creation was gradual appears alike from the account of the Bible and from scientific observation. Matter and motion must have existed before the ball of earth was formed; and the physico-chemical forces must have been in full play when the first lichen clothed the rocks, or the first plants were formed in the sea. The first appearance of life on the globe was a mighty step in creation, and from this point the ques. tion of design becomes a very urgent one. Observe: the plant world is a new world, with a series of wonders all its own. There was nothing in the heat of the sun, nor in the earth's motion or magnetic currents, to give any promise or presage of the marvels of the forest. Supposing that we admit that these were evolved by law, that is to say, that as a matter of fact plants only appeared where certain conditions of light and heat and

Observer, Aug. 1,71.

moisture combined to favour them, and that wherever these conditions : were combined they never failed to appear. The question next arises whether matter and force evolved them from their own inherent nature, or force and matter were created with the intention to produce them, so that the plant was intended and prepared then when the other forces began to stir the formless void. Is the plant world the accidental or necessary outcome of the forces that made the mineral world ? or must we say that it bears marks of design ? Here we must observe that it is a wider and richer world than that which preceded it: more full by far of forms of beauty and grace, each of them sustained by a vascular system of which the mineral world affords no parallel. You stand before the gnarled and twisted oak that rises out of the feathering ferns; you never think that this giant of two centuries, endued with a certain power of self-protection against the storms of two hundred years, is an accidental product. It is so grandly strong, so richly clothed with a myriad leaves, alike but yet in something different each from each. The cattle count upon its friendly shade ; the fowls of the air make it their resting-place. This a result of certain motions in the universe and certain properties of matter, not designed at all, foreseen by no eye? To no one would such a thought naturally occur. The world, full in its first stage of marks of order and purpose, shows more of the same marks in its second and more complicated state. The change that has taken place is not towards confusion and exhaustion from unforeseeu defects in mechanism, but a higher development. The mineral kingdom was wonderful; that it should be able to clothe itself with a mantle of verdue, and pass into another kingdom much more complex, heightens the wonder. But then comes the further change, the pouring out of animal life upon the globe. Was this too an inevitable consequence of physical forces ? All the animal creation teems with marks of purpose. Consider only some of the contrivances by which the fowls of the air are fitted for their peculiar life. Describing a night of extreme coldness, the poet says:

• The owl, for all her feathers, is a-cold.' The warm covering of the bird must be portable as well as warm; it weighs about an ounce and a half. But the covering of birds would be useless to them if the showers to which they must be exposed were absorbed by the plumage, so that it became a heavy clinging mass. An oily secretion makes it waterproof; we have all seen the duck free itself by one shake from every trace of its recent bath. The heavy skeleton that befits pedestrian creatures, would disable the bird from flight; so it is provided with tubes of thin bone, surrounding a cavity filled with air. Its pinions must be light as well as strong; observe how the light barbs, of the feather have roughened edges so that they form one strong continuous surface, almost impervious to the air which they strike. The air in the bones of birds and in other cavities of the body, heated too by an inner warmth much greater than that of man, contributes something to their buoyancy. Their speed and endurance

It is said that the swallow's flight is ninety miles an hour. ' One long stretch across the North Sea brings the sea-fowl from Norway to Flamborough Head; they rest for a short time after this flight, and pass inland, not the worse for their exploit. You may infer from the beak of a bird it's habits and its food. The bill of a woodpecker is a pointed tool, tipped with hardest horn, to break open the bark of the tree for insects. The flat bill of the duck has plates of horn at the side ; an excellent instrument for straining off the water and retaining the food. The

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