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The Nebular Hypothesis-not necessarily atheistic, but practically ignores God.
. . . . . . . . . . Pp. 13-28
ever incapable of proof. Contrary to all analogy and experience: it makes coal
NEBULAR THEORISTS CHANGING BASE,
Spencer begins with inconceivable cold, condenses the world by heating it,
perpetual motion possible in a universe only partly filled with matter. Pp. 38-54
no one could prove that such matter did not exist. If it existed it would be
. . . . . . Pp. 55-77
It was “ while men slept” that the enemy sowed tares among the wheat; and this parable illustrates the progress of evil in the world. It is through neglect and inattention that error finds place and takes root. It is in this way that skepticism has gained its foothold, while Christian teachers have failed to notice it, or have treated it with silent contempt.
Intelligence and information are not hereditary. The son of a philosopher may be an ignoramus. The wisest men must teach their children the simplest elements of knowledge, or allow them to grow up in ignorance of all that they themselves have learned. Hence the fact that Christian men have investigated and settled for themselves the great problems of faith and duty, avails nothing for others, even those most dear to them, who need, each for themselves, to reexamine and re-settle the same questions.
It is the habit of skeptics to ignore all that has been settled and established in Christianity; and this because, as a rule, skeptical men are untaught and uninformed concerning the facts and truths which pertain to the Christian religion. It is a subject they have never studied, and concerning which they have never been properly instructed. They may have gone to church as a matter of form, and have heard about the gospel in a general and traditional way, but they have never examined and weighed the evidences in the case.
No man is fit to confute a doctrine which he is too indifferent to examine or comprehend. But it would be hard to find many skeptical writers or speakers who have ever had even a fair look at the opposite side of the question, to say nothing of a practical experience of the gospel of salvation, without which all theories are but shells and husks.
There is, undoubtedly, bigotry among Christians, just as there are infidels and hypocrites among them; but there is also bigotry outside of all churches, and it is painfully apparent in those skeptics who, in their ignorance of the evidences which establish and confirm the Christian faith, rush headlong into the wildest speculations, and embrace the most absurd and unfounded theories, which in their turn are taken
up by skeptics yet more ignorant, and made the basis of the scoffs and jeers of men who risk their eternal destinies upon the bare assertions of persons whom they have never seen, and whose only claim to their confidence lies in the fact that they pretend they have studied science, and seem ready to make a sinner feel that he can go on in sin and not be afraid of an Almighty Creator.
If such men could only turn God out of his own world, they would feel quite at liberty to do as they liked. And if, instead of believing that they are the creatures of God, and so are amenable to his righteous and wholesome control, they can convince themselves that they are simply descended from some race of obscene and dirty little brutes, what is there to hinder them from imitating their degraded ancestors to their hearts' content?
Of course there is no disputing about tastes; and if a man chooses to put away his history, his heritage, and his hopes, as a son and creature of Almighty God; and trace his genealogy to the monkey, the mollusk, the moner, and the mud, we must respect his rights, and allow him to exercise his preferences; but when he insists that we shall also trace our genealogic line through ancestral apes and patriarchal pollywogs, we respectfully decline the honor. We prefer to look higher; and as there is still a little uncertainty among scientific men on the point, we propose to give ourselves the benefit of the doubt, and still look up to a Heavenly Father, instead of down to a little dot of a mud-spawned moner, as the source of our existence.
The author of this volume carries the war into Africa, and uses great plainness of speech. And it really seems high time that the battle be set in array, and that men find out who is on the Lord's side, and who is on the side of the devil and the monkeys. And the less we have of circumlocution in the case the better. Of course, this style of warfare is not very popular among those who like to wear the honors and emoluments of Christianity while laborin, to teach heathenism and undermine the gospel; but as this battle is not fought in the interest of the apes or their progeny, they cannot reasonably expect to direct the campaign.
Those who hold that the author of this work is, like themselves, descended from some sportive monkey, will not, of course, be offended at any playfulness of logic which such an ancestry might entail; and those who have not debased their manhood by laying claim to a brutal origin, will remember that there was a time when even a prophet of the Most High could taunt the priests of Baal with the inactivity of a god who seemed to be either asleep or on a journey.
And when men, made in the image of the Almighty, devote their magnificent powers to proving that they are the offspring of apes and tadpoles, it may be questioned whether the subject has not ceased to be solemn, except as an illustration of the fatuity of men who plainly show their fallen state by the still lower alliances which they seek.
The world by wisdom knew not God. Great Egypt built pyramids and worshiped cats! Polished Greece erected magnificent temples where they might adore idols, and had thousands of prostitutes in their courts to facilitate their devotions. Mighty Rome, with thirty thousand gods in her Pantheon, built her Coliseum where ninety thousand of her citizens could sit and see hundreds of gladiators butcher and hack each other in pieces for their amusement. And the skeptical scientist of the nineteenth century, having turned his back upon that God who only hath immortality, and that Christ who has brought life and incorruption to light in the gospel, says to the monkey, Thou art my father; and to the tadpole and the moner, Thou art my sister and my mother! Athens wrote upon her altar, Agnosto Theo, but still worshiped “the Unknown God;" the modern skeptic, equally and more culpably ignorant, still writes himself an agnostic, but is proud of his ignorance, and refuses to adore the Great Unseen.
According to natural law, all variations of species tend to revert to their original types. Plants, developed by cultivation, if left to themselves speedily deteriorate. Human beings, deprived of opportunities for culture, quickly become degenerate. It does not require long ages to reduce a people to a lower level. In India, human infants, stolen and nurtured by wolves, develop only brutal instincts; and children, though of the highest birth, with such environment do not rise above a brutal condition.
Nor are the beneficial changes in the character of the human family accomplished through the slow and tedious processes of progression. Nations do not civilize themselves; some external force or impulse must change the course and current of their lives, to bring them to a higher plane. There are savages on earth to-day, after all the ages of progression, which are as brutal and barbarous in their instincts as were the inhabitants of proud, imperial Rome. But let the mis. sionary, Bible in hand, reach their shores and preach to them the gospel of God, and a change comes, so sudden, radical, and permanent, that the fierce and blood-thirsty savages cast aside their idols and turn to the Lord, and the whole condition of society becomes so altered in a single life-time, that they gratefully inscribe upon the