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the air for birds; providing likewise for their continuation and increase. · The antients compared the world to an egg: And the operation of the spirit upon it, they conceived to be a kind of incubation; which, by its genial warmth gradually diffused through it, raised a gentle fermentation in it, which matured its several productions ; But this is no more than a kind of illustration. The philosophy of this part of nature, is what we cannot pretend to have any knowledge of, so as to be able to trace out the laws relating to the production of animal life, and spirit; which are quite out of our cognizance,
One animal there was of a nobler kind, furnished with higher endowments, than all the rest, and favoured with a peculiar prerogative. His formation is reserved for last, to crown the whole : He is described as being made in the image and likeness of God himself, and is invested with the property and dominion of the whole creation.
Thus the heavens, and the earth were finished, and all the host of them *. And God Saw every thing that he had made, and behold it was very good t..
I shall finish this chapter with some reflections, which M. Montesquieu makes at the entrance of his celebrated work on the spirit of laws; which are no less applicable to the succeeding parts of this treatise. * The world, though formed by the motion of matter, and void of understanding, sublists nevertheless through so long a succession of ages.: Its motions therefore must certainly be directed by invariable laws. · And could we imagine another world; it must also have constant rules, or must inevitably perish. — Thus the creaţion, which seems an arbitrary act, sup
* Gen. ii. 1. This chapter seems to have been transposed. The three first verses are the conclusion of the history contained in the first chapter. Then follows (ver. t.) what looks like an extract, which Moses, as far as suited his purpose, had preserved out of some former account; but which is greatly perplexed. of Genesis, i. 31.
poseth laws as invariable, as those of the fatality of the atheists. It would be absurd to say, that the Creator might govern the world without those rules; fince without them it could not subfift.
These rules are a fixt and invariable relation. In bodies moved, the motion is received, increased, diminished, loft, according to the relations of the quantity of matter and velocity.”
We may add, That the laws, by which the world is governed, must have been framed at the first formation of it: And if it is governed by laws, it probably was made according to certain laws likewise; ·and that the same laws, which were obferved in its creation, were continued, except with regard to a change of circumItances, in the government of it likewise.
С НА Р.
OF THE PRIME VALS AND PARADIBACAL
STATE Op the Earth. .
T HE great Architect of the universe
I having, upon a review of his work, expressed his complacency in it; and having feen with approbation, how the whole was fitted for its defigned end ; and all the parts, adapted to the several uses they were made for; as nothing could come out of the hands of the all-wise Creator, that would not fully answer his purpofe in creating it, this earth must have been admi. rably well contrived, and very completely furnished, for the reception and fuftenance of its future inhabitants.
'. D 4 - God
God made man upright, in perfect innocence and simplicity ; without the least blemish or imperfection, natural or moral. It is probable therefore, as Mr. Whiston observes, « That before any good, or bad actions of creatures; when every thing was just as the wisdom of God was pleased to appoint- When each creature was complete and perfect in its kind; and so suited to the most complete and perfect state of external nature - It is highly probable, that the outward world, or every such state of external nature, was even, úniform, and regular; as was the temper and disposition of each creature, that was to be placed therein ; and as properly suited to all their necessities, and conveniences, as was possible, and reasonable to be expected. Such a state, it is natural to believe, obtained through the universe, till succeeding changes in the living and rational, required proportionable ones in the inanimate and corporeal world *".
* Mr, Whiston's Theory of the Earth, p. 115.