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certainty. The tremendous space is actually bridged over by the labors of the telescope and geometry. And now consider that this distance is only the blank which lies between two suns of our firmament, which is composed of millions more, separated by the same awful abysses of night and solitude! How immense the field, then, occupied by the entire cluster, whose fractions are separated by such intervals! And if 3000 millions of miles separate the sun from one of its planets, and twenty millions of millions of miles separate one sun from another; what, the same stupendous scale preserved-what must be the breadth of that nameless profound, which separates one firmament from another! which lies between those magnificent and mighty clusters of suns and systems, that, as the telescope is improved, lift on the field of vision, troop behind troop, rising forever out of the fathomless depths of space!

Indeed the vastness of numbers is as amazing as the measureless solitudes of space. Take, for example, the first of the nebulous cluster, that chances to come into the field of the telescope, far out in the boundless void, flaming like a jewel on the bosom of the night. What a lavish display of the wealth and power of the great Creator. What a revelation of glories! Here, within a visible space less than a tenth of the moon's disc, a space no larger than the hand, there must be "wedged together," says Herschell, from ten to twenty thousand suns! Of course each one of these has its attendant system of planets, primary and secondary, like our own.

And there are thousands of such nebulæ lying within reach of our instruments, within the comparatively little patch of space which we are able to survey. They are spread all over the heavens, and the light of them is continually streaming in upon the moving telescope.

What then of the countless hosts that people the infinite realms beyond, forever beyond the reach of the telescope? The mind totters and reels with the thought, that all we can see, all these myriad suns, and systems, and clusters, dwindle into a point of light compared with what lies outside and forever invisible to any possible human vision. And yet it is really so. All that we see as yet are only a few golden sands which God let fall from his hand one

day in his walk through the infinite. The vast unsurveyed fields, and prairies and forests still spread out on all sides; and the Andes and the Himalayas still lift their lofty summits in the distance! Need we, then, be surprised into incredulity by any array of figures which shall attempt to represent these? 5

Shall we suppose for a moment that our little sounding lines, stretched to their utmost, will reach bottom? Far from this, God is greater than our speculations, and the multiplication table will not exhaust his creation, or exceed the immensity of his marvellous works! We cannot say this is possible, but that is impossible. We cannot draw the line of his ability, and say, "Thus far thou canst go, but no farther-here must thy work be staid."

We may be oppressed, bewildered, overwhelmed in the attempt to grapple with these tremendous realities of the universe; but what are they to Him who holds them all, as so much shining dust, in the hollow of his hand? What are they to Him whose years are without beginning or end, whose spirit

"Lives through all life, extends through all extent,
Spreads undivided, operates unspent:"

To whom there is

66 -No high, no low; no great, no small,
Who fills and bounds, connects and equals all."

Verily, we are ready to exclaim with the Psalmist, "O Lord God Almighty, marvellous are thy works, and that my soul knoweth right well-marvellous are thy works, and in wisdom and in power hast thou made them all;" and were it not that we have the assurance that they are made in goodness as well as in wisdom and power, we should almost fear lest we should be overlooked and forgotten amid this endless wilderness of worlds. Often we should take up that other cry of the Psalmist-"When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained,-What is man,

5 In the thinnest portion of the Milky Way, 50,000 suns crossed the field of Herschell's telescope in an hour, and in the thickest part more than 100,000 in the space of fifteen minutes! These numbers in such time almost overwhelm us. We stagger beneath the weight of such awful facts.

that thou art mindful of him! and the son of man that thou visitest him!"

And yet after all, it is man, it is mind, it is intelligent spirit, that gives to this grand theatre of the material universe all its substantial use and worth, all its real glory! Without men and angels, without Mind to appreciate and enjoy it, to honor and glorify its Author, it would be like a splendid and costly panorama without spectators. It would be as if one should compose and have performed a magnificent oratorio without an audience!

And this brings us to the second part of this article, to the argument for the endless life of the soul, the immortality of Mind, which seems necessarily and logically_to grow out of the infinitude of the material universe. For what is this display of worlds and suns, of galaxies and constellations and clusters without number and without end, if the soul, so colossal in its powers, so fitted to explore, appreciate and enjoy these wonders, and through which only, these and all else can glorify God,—if this is to perish at death, and be no more forever? Why is so glorious a work set out before it, and ability and energy given to perform it, but the time alone denied! For surely, the present life compared with the extent of the universe is as a cipher to infinity. The mind has opportunity only to try its powers, to realize what it can do if time be given, and then it is crushed out, according to the gospel of unbelief, leaving the glorious work it could do all unfinished-yea, scarcely begun.

Let us look at this, let us consider how much one can do toward a thorough acquaintance with our little planet, the earth, within the space of time allotted to the ordinary life of man. How much is it possible for us to accomplish in studying the surface of our globe, its mountains, seas, rivers, plains, deserts, forests, and mines; its countless forms of animal and vegetable life, beasts and birds, fish and reptiles, and insects,-plants, flowers and fruits, -nations, languages, customs, modes of life,-history, science and art, and so through the encyclopedia of all knowledge possible to man in his present estate,-how much of this grand survey, in its endless details, is it possible for us to accomplish in a single life time?

Extend now this study and survey to the myriad mil

lions of worlds and systems which we have glanced at in passing, and the myriad millions more, invisible, plunging through the fathomless profound of space! What time will be needful to this great work-what time to behold, examine and enjoy the nameless and numberless exhibitions of the Divine power and wisdom and goodness spread out on this broad and magnificent theatre of the universe! what time to become familiar with the order and arrangements, the harmonies and beauties, the life and history, of each one of these glittering orbs! What time but that which shall parallel this endless procession of suns and constellations! What life, but an unending one, will be long enough to look upon all the glorious wonders of Creative Power; and lift the veil from the beautiful mysteries which burn along the infinite abysses, and invite the gaze of the exulting astronomer, only to show him that they lie beyond the reach of all human effort!

Is there not here, then, a presumptive proof of the endless life of the soul? Has not God himself furnished us here an illustration of the great revelation of the gospel, that we live forever? Is he not consistent? Are not all his works in harmony? If he gives light, he gives an eye to use it. If he fills the world with a thousand delicious melodies, he forms the ear to enjoy them. If he creates us with animal needs and desires, he furnishes the means of gratifying them. If he implants a religious element in man, he bestows the means of fitting culture, he gives us Revelation and Truth as an answer to the spiritual cry within. So in all things,-in all his works and arrange. ments there is relation, proportion, mutual harmony. And why should it fail in the case before us now?

If God has fitted up so grand and beautiful a theatre, as we have seen this stupendous universe to be, has he not endowed the audience, so to speak, with capacities and powers, and a life-time corresponding with the magnitude of the preparations? Have the subordinate arrangements all been looked to, and the principal part, on which the entire interest of the great drama turns, been forgotten, overlooked, or utterly neglected? Have we all the scen ery and decorations fitted up in the most gorgeous manner, and with a lavish expenditure of materials, and then,

when the exulting crowd have just entered the vestibule, and caught a glimpse of the splendor, and the brilliant lights, and the amazing beauty within, then is the curtain to fall, and the great doors to be closed in their faces. forever!

Can it be? Is this the way God works? is this the way a wise man works? No, verily-it is not so. We are not to be shut out from the joy of the universe so rudely and suddenly as this. We are to have more than a glimpse of this distant glory. We are to enter farther in than the porch of this great building of God. We are to behold more of its celestial beauty, more of its marvellous adornments, than we can ever reach from the little planet we are now confined to-more than is possible in the little mortal life we are now living. We are God's audience, and he will do more for us than barely permit us to come to the outer gate, let us look for a moment with longing eye upon the opening glories beyond, and then put out the lights, and leave us in total darkness, leave us to sink down into eternal night and death! No, no, we are immortal, or this broad, boundless universe is an everlasting lie! There is more for us than this earth and this life can give, or these stars that burn above us, the glorious constellations that fling their splendors on the far off night, and the hopes and promises and longings with which they fill the soul, are all a stupendous fraud on man!

We have all heard of the World's Fair, and of the Crystal Palace. Suppose, now, that when this vast building had been filled with the products of all the countries of the earth, with the manufactures and cunning work of all nations and tribes, with every imaginable article of use and ornament; and the people of every land had been invited to the splendid exhibition; to see, examine and appreciate all the marvels and beauties of which would require weeks and months even,-suppose the British government should have ordered that, just as the immense crowd began to pour in through the open portals, and bewildred and overjoyed with the magnificence of the scene, while yet lingering about the entrance, gazing with wonder at the long avenues extending in all directions, the

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