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geological forces at the epoch to which they must refer it? The attempt were preposterous. If it had taken place, it is not conceivable that any traces of it would be found on the strata of the earth. But it is demonstrably impossible that it could have been produced by the chemical and mechanical agents to which they refer the formation of strata. The forces of chemistry, fire, and water, have not the slightest tendency to absorb, or annihilate the atmosphere. Though oxygen and nitrogen are continually absorbed by bodies, and disengaged from them in the processes that are going forward in the mineral, vegetable, and animal worlds, yet there is not the slightest reason to suppose that the volume of the atmosphere has undergone the least diminution since the moment of its creation. Such is the embarrassing position in which they have placed themselves. If they deny that there was an atmosphere during the innumerable ages which they affirm preceded the Mosaic creation, then they virtually deny the existence of plants and animals during that period, and overturn their theory. If they admit that an atmosphere then existed, and deny its annihilation anterior to the date of the creative act recorded in this passage, they then contradict the inspired record, and establish the antagonism—which they wish to escape—of their theory with the word of God. And if they admit its annihilation, then they equally contradict and confute themselves, because of the impossibility of their either proving or accounting for it on the principles of geology, or compatibly with the laws of matter. Their system is thus at as open war with the powers of nature as it is with the teachings of inspiration. No skill can ever bring it into harmony with either. No learning or philosophy can ever demonstrate it, or save it from the discredit of the grossest absurdity. Is it not singular that these men of science who display such admirable powers in the practical branches of their profession, should not have extended their inquiries far enough into this department to discover this fatal difficulty?
How do geologists meet the contradiction to their own principles, and to the sacred text in which they are involved by supposing an annihilation of the light and the lands of a former world? Do they admit that light must on their theory have existed before the creation announced in the text? Did it not become Dr. Buckland, who makes that supposition, to offer, if in his power, some proof of its reality, and some intimation of the mode in which it is to be reconciled with the principles of geology? Is not his assumption wholly unscientific? Is it not absurd to attempt to reconcile the theory with the text, by an assumption that not only cannot be proved—but that directly contradicts both the sacred record and his own principles? Moreover, not having proved an annihilation of light, does not his admission that it existed during the life of the plants and animals that are buried in the strata, forbid the supposition that they existed anterior to the light, the creation of which is announced in the text, and thereby overturn the theory that they had their being in a prior age? By what method have other writers attempted to justify the supposition that a vast period intervened between the epochs of the first and the third verses? What is the first objection to that expedient? What is the second? What is the third? What does Dr. Buckland suppose was the mode of the extinction of light? How does that contradict the statement of the text, that light was then created; not caused by the dispersion of vapors, to shine on the earth? How does it contradict the text in respect to the day, which is said to have followed the creation of light? How does it affect the meaning of the other acts of creation? If the alleged creation of light was no creation, may not the creation of vegetables, animals, and man be with equal propriety held to be no creations? But how does Dr. Buckland's supposition consist with the fact that there was then no atmosphere by which vapor could have been diffused through the space above the earth, so as to intercept the light? And how does his supposition consist with the fourth geological axiom, which forbids the assumption of any geological events, that cannot be proved to have taken place, and to have been produced by the causes to which he refers all geological effects? What is Dr. Hitchcock's suggestion respecting the mode in which the light may have disappeared? What is the first objection to that hypothesis? What is the next objection to it? What is the third objection to it? Is it inconsistent with the laws of light, and of matter? Is it inconsistent with the third axiom of geology? Point out the absurdities of Dr. Hitchcock's fancy that the light which God called day, instead of emanating from the sun—was developed out of the matter of the earth in which it had become absorbed? Was day ever known to be produced in that manner? Are there any known chemical agents capable of developing a day from the matter of the earth? Has Dr. Hitchcock ever got up a day in Massachusetts by that process? Is the pretence of reconciling the theory with the text by such a supposition, worthy of a man of science, or only of an ignorant and presumptuous charlatan? What is the sacred penman's history of the second day's creation? What is meant by the firmament? Did an ascent of vapor, and a collection of water in the air in the form of clouds, follow as a natural consequence of the creation of the atmosphere? Was that the division of the waters of which the sacred text speaks? Can the geological theory be reconciled with this creation of the atmosphere on the second day? Why not? Do geologists evade this difficulty? Are they not bound however, to meet it? Is it not inconsistent with their own principles, as well as unphilosophical, to assume without proof, that an atmosphere which they assert had before existed, had been annihilated? Are not the chemical and mechanical forces to which they refer all the changes that have taken place on the earth, wholly inadequate to produce such an annihilation of the atmosphere? What is the dilemma then in which they place themselves?
Difficulties of geologists in respect to the elevation of Land from the Ocean on the Third, and the adjustment of the heavenly Bodies on the Fourth Day of the Creation.
Their scheme is equally irreconcilable with the creative acts of the third day.
"And God said, Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together into one place, and let the dry land appear: and it was so. And God called the dry land earth: and the gathering together of the waters called he Seas: and God saw that it was good. And God said, let the earth bring forth grass, and herb yielding seed, and the fruit-tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so. And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good. And the evening and the morning were the third day," v. 9-13.
As the waters were now first collected into seas, and dry land made to appear, it is apparent that the ocean had continued up to this time to envelop it at every point; and thence, that it had as yet no moun