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HINTS ON SPIRITUAL DEPRESSION.
No. II.

BY THE REV. WILLIAM MUIR, D.D., Minister of St Stephen's Parish, Edinburgh. An alternative is called for in the mode of treating cases of spiritual depression. The occasion of anxiety and despondency has to be laid open, either that it may be rebuked, or that it may be sympathised with; either to give warning, or impart encouragement;-though the difficulty is often great of knowing when the one mode of treatinent is needed, and when the other.

Undoubtedly, offering comfort to the distressed is what benevolence instantaneously prompts. But to do this at once, without any discrimina*ion of cases, is not wise. It may serve at times merely to hide the source of evil; to cherish the persuasion of soundness, while no cure is wrought; to thwart conscience in the most salutary of her exercises, or actually to "resist the Spirit" in one of his ways of bringing the soul to final peace. "Ye have healed the wound of the daughter of my people slightly," is a charge laid against the false prophets.

Instances of spiritual depression occur, therefore, in which the wise treatment, instead of at once applying the balm of comfort, employs first the probe of serious and awakening inquiries. To strike the more solemn fear on the subject of a personal interest in the divine favour, is often the best means of at last fixing hope unchangeably in God. Anxiety sifting the genuineness of faith in the Saviour, may lead to the calmer and fuller assurance of grace. Convictions of sin, as they penetrate more widely, form the broader foundation of moral improvement. And the very turbidness and bitterness of the earlier cares of the soul, become the measures to the purity and sweetness of the succeeding comforts. Why is satisfaction in Religion lost or abated? Why are the ordinances of devotion observed, while the pleasures of devotion are never felt, the Scriptures read, the Sabbaths kept, and communions celebrated, while the blessed effects of these are never received? Are we really "in the faith?" Are we honestly pledged to the cause of Christ? Are we dealing truly with the covenant of peace?

PRICE 1d.

Do we carefully employ the appointed means of keeping alive and strengthening in us the principles of the divine life? Do we cultivate, by daily exercise, the sentiments and habits of Christian trust and righteousness? Do we cherish grace in the heart, the flame of which is not only to cheer and gladden by its light, but by its power is to consume the dross of the affections, and purify the fine gold? These inquiries, with the humiliating alternative to which they point, are often needed for detecting the secret cause of spiritual depression, and consequently, in the first instance, for the purposes of rebuke and warning. No hasty attempt, therefore, to comfort and encourage, is to make us overlook their importance. They must not be put aside, nor postponed, nor blunted. And in faithfully urging them, it must never be forgotten, that spiritual depression may originate in what infests the mind with an "evil root of bitterness ;" and what, accordingly, for obtaining peace, must be removed; and, to be removed, must be searched and seen.

It is true, that the humiliation and painfulness arising from such inquiries, in minds of peculiar sensibility, may occasionally have the effect of sinking them below the horizon of Christian light: a circumstance which prescribes the need of wisely discriminating the cases of spiritual depression, and suiting the treatment to each respectively. It is true, besides, that suggestions of fear and sadness are often shot forth as envenomed darts from the quiver of the malevolent archer, who wounds though he cannot destroy. It is true, also, that trying changes of mental frames, in Christian believers, are often unavoidable: their experience acquainting them with the intermixtures of "trembling and rejoicing," one season being clear to them, and another dark; their sky now serene, and then tempestuous; the duties performed with alacrity and satisfaction to-day, which to-morrow shall be laboured through almost as a penance; the religious services that once seemed to be kindled as "by a live coal from off the altar," becoming afterwards as if they never had excited the least glow of devotion,-and thus, the mind feeling itself pressed on by another "yoke and burden" than what Christ Jesus calls it to bear.

But still, though "the heart of the righteous

be often sad, when the Lord has not made it sad," yet inquiries into the state of the soul, both serious and strict, are to be put. We are to "prove and examine ourselves," for ascertaining whether spiritual remissness and secret sin be not the cause of spiritual depression. And, in seeking peace at the throne of mercy, these are to form some of our unceasing petitions:-"Lord teach us to know the plague of our heart. Search us and try us, and show us the evil way that is in us. Lead us in the way everlasting. Turn us, and we shall be turned. Heal us, and we shall be healed. Save us, and we shall be saved."

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH OF

JOHN HOWARD.

who looked for his reward, not to the opinion of the
We
world, but to the approval of his own conscience.
said that those stated were the only obstacles to the
only things that did not strongly recommend it.
union; we should rather have said that they were the
She
is said to have been very pious and benevolent, and to
have sympathized with him in all his plans of useful-
ness. In temper and character, she seems very much
to have resembled him; like him, delighting more in
the active than the contemplative duties of the Christ-
ian. Their views and desires thus harmonising, no
doubt they looked forward with delight to the prospect
of spending many happy days together in ministering to
the wants of the poor and the sick in their neighbourhood.
But ere these dreams of happiness could be fully realized,
it seemed right to "him who seeth not as man seeth,"
that she should be taken up into that kingdom where
sorrow is unknown, and that she who had striven on earth
to imitate the unwearied benevolence of her Saviour,
should now be "received into glory, that she might be
truly like him, seeing him as he is." Her loss was so
deeply felt by her husband, that for some time he was
unfitted from pursuing his usual employments, and in
hopes of effacing the memory of his sorrows, set out on
another continental tour, and busied himself with read-
ing and study.

JOHN HOWARD was born in 1726 or 1727, at Enfield. His
father was an upholsterer in West Smithfield, who, by
his parsimonious habits, and constant attention to busi-
ness, had amassed a considerable fortune. Of the early
life of Howard, little is now known. There are no
anecdotes preserved of the kindly or generous disposi-
tions of the boy, though doubtless even at this early
stage, he must have given proofs of a nobleness and
disinterestedness of character. His education, though
it occupied but a small portion of his life, was certainly
not neglected, as we find that before he reached sixteen,
he had been under the tuition of three different masters,
one of whom, at least, was a man of some learning.
But his father, either desirous that his son should tread
in his footsteps, or blind to his promising talents, de-tunity of increasing knowledge.
termined that no more of his life should be spent in
acquiring knowledge, which could not be turned to
profit. Like some practical philosophers of our own
day, he perhaps thought that the time which had been
expended in acquiring Latin and Greek, had been most
unprofitably wasted, and therefore, at sixteen, he bound
him apprentice to a wholesale grocer. In this choice,
the party interested seems to have been the only one
not consulted; and it was not, therefore, to be wonder-
ed at, that young Howard, immediately on coming of
age, quitted a business which had proved as hurtful to
his health, as it was uncongenial to his habits. Having
thus freed himself from the cares of business, he spent
two years in travelling in France and Italy, and on re-
turning to this country, applied himself with vigor to
the studies of Natural Philosophy and Medicine.

It is right to mention, that in this year (1756) Howard was elected a member of the Royal Society, in consequence of some meteorological observations which he had made and communicated to a friend of his who belonged to that body. This distinction, his biographers tell us, did not make him proud, and was only valued by him in so far as it gave him an oppor

There is an anecdote told of him at this time, which shews in a very pleasing light his peculiar kind-heartedness. There was an old man who had, for a long period, been a gardener to his father, and to this old man, while busily employed in the garden, he was for sometime in the daily habit of throwing a loaf over the wall, saying sportively as he did so, Harry, look among the cabbages, and you will find something for your family." He also at this time gave largely to the poor, and a considerable sum to assist in erecting a house to the clergyman on whose ministrations he attended.

66

But while thus busied in doing good, he was seized with a very severe illness, and ordered by his surgeons to go to Newington for a change of air. In Newington he lodged with a Mrs Loidore, to whose care and kindness he ascribed his recovery. Mrs L. was a lady in narrow circumstances, and considerably advanced in years, but so deep was the impression her kindness made on Howard, that he felt himself called upon by duty to propose marriage. It was in vain that the lady represented the imprudence of the step, from the inequalities of their ages and rank; he had taken his resolution, and these objections (and they were the only ones that could be urged,) had no weight with a man

In the summer of this year he paid his second visit to the Continent. The vessel in which he went was attacked by a French privateer, and he was taken prisoner. When the vessel was landed, the crew was shut up in the Castle at Brest, and for a week endured hardships almost incredible. After the week had passed, Howard was offered his liberty, provided he promised, on reaching Britain, to use his influence with government, to get a French naval officer exchanged for him, and that in case he failed in this, he would return. Government was prevailed on to fulfil this condition, and he determined to spend the remainder of the year in his own country. We mention these circumstances thus minutely, because it was to the hardship which he endured in the Castle at Brest that he was in the habit of referring his first impulse to befriend that unfortunate class of men who, from having put law at defiance, are shut out from the sympathies of the world.

In 1757, he retired to Cardington near Bedford, married a daughter of Edward Leeds, Esq. of Croxton, in Cambridgeshire, and occupied himself in cultivating his estate, and contributing to the comfort and happiness of his poor neighbours. He pulled down many cottages, which, either from age, or from dampness of situation, were unhealthy, and built others in airy places, allotting to each a small space of vacant ground. These cottages were let at very low rents to the poorest of the peasantry. He likewise established free schools for both sexes, and spent a large portion of his time in visiting the sick and the infirm. Nor was his charity confined to his own vicinity, or to the sect to which he belonged. He originated many schemes of public utility, and subscribed largely to those set on foot by others.

In 1765, Howard was destined to meet with fresh calamities. His wife, never robust, had for some time been declining in strength every day, and change of air and scene (for all possible means were resorted to) had had no effect in arresting the progress of her complaint. On the 27th March, of this year, she had borne him a son, and on the 31st, it pleased Providence to remove her from this world, but so tedious and protracted had been her

illness, and so completely was she resigned to the will of God, that this afflicting dispensation was received by her husband with calmness and composure.

After spending the next four years in his usual works of mercy, and having made some provision for his son's education, Howard left this country with the intention of travelling in France and Italy. When he had reached Milan, we find, from a journal which he then kept, that he was so shocked with the superstition of the people, and with the manner in which the Sabbath was profaned, that he resolved to shorten his stay. But let us quote his own characteristic language. "I determined," says he, "after much deliberation, to return without seeing the south of Italy; conceiving it to be improper, for the mere gratification of my curiosity, to incur the loss of so many Sabbaths, which would have been contrary to the general tenor of my life, and must have given me pain on a death-bed, on a retrospective view, as unbecoming a disciple of Christ, whose mind I wish to have formed in my soul. These thoughts,

with the desire I feel to see my dear boy, determine me to restrain my curiosity. O, why should vanity and folly, pictures and baubles, or even the sight of stupendous mountains, beautifni hills, and rich valleys, which will ere long be all consumed, engross the thoughts of a candidate for an everlasting kingdom, whom God hath raised to the hope of that glory, soon to be revealed to all who are washed and sanctified by faith in the Redeemer! O, my soul, look forward to that glorious world of light, life, and love, compared with which every thing here is low, mean, and little! The preparation of the heart is from God. Prepare, O God! the heart of thy unworthy creature, and unto thee shall be ascribed all the glory through eternity. Even now, my trembling soul almost longs to take its flight to regions where sin and sorrow are unknown, and where God, my Redeemer, is all in all. O, happy spirits, that are safe in these mansions! they know the wonders of redeeming love." What an exalted idea does this passage give us of the genuine Christianity of Howard, and how very rare, even among the best of us, is it to find one who weighs so scrupulously the probabilities of evil arising from amusements in themselves innocent! Did all Christians act thus, there were less need for the censure implied in that saying of Jesus, that "the children of darkness are wiser in their generation than the children of light."

But to return to our narrative. After his wife's death, Howard, feeling his interest in his estate at Cardington greatly lessened from the many melancholy recollections with which it was unavoidably connected in his memory, employed himself for the next eight years chiefly in the education of his son, and in works of benevolence. In 1773 he was elected high sheriff for the county of Bedford; and so strict were his ideas of duty, that he thought himself called upon personally to perform all the duties connected with this office, although his predecessors had been in the habit of devolving the more arduous upon others. Of these duties the most necessary and important, it appeared to him, was the superintendence of the prisoners. For this, if not inclination, had admirably fitted him; and the knowledge of how little had been, and how much might be done in this department, acted as a stimulant to exertion. From his investigations into the state of the jail at Bedford, he discovered that many abuses existed. The male and female prisoners were crowded into the same court yard, an arrangement which had been the cause of much vice-the jailors depended for their livelihood upon the fees they got on the discharge of prisoners, a practice attended with great mischief, as the poor or friendless were often imprisoned for several months longer than their sentence had prescribed, from not being able to pay these fees--and the governor of the prison, instead of receiving a

nature,

salary, paid forty pounds a-year for his office, so great was the revenue extorted from prisoners on their liberation. These evils he immediately ordered to be remedied; and such was the impression which they had left upon his mind, that, having reason to suspect that the other prisons in England were no better conducted, he determined to ascertain the exact state of every jail, that he might be enabled to take steps for rendering them more conducive to the improvement and comfort of the prisoner. With these views, he visited Cambridge, Huntingdon, Northampton, Leicester, Derby, Hereford, &c.; and in all these places he found, that the jails were small, damp, and in unhealthy situations, and that in many of them there was no chapel nor infirmary. The debtors' cells, he also found, were destitute of every comfort; there being nothing for the prisoners to lie upon but mats, and the poorer debtors being scarcely allowed food enough to sustain life. Not satisfied with this information which he had obtained, he extended his researches to York, Norwich, London, Exeter, Bristol, and North Wales. The result of his researches in these places was a conviction that, with a few exceptions, all the jails were close and unhealthy, and that the prisoners, if poor and friendless, were treated in the most inhuman manner, and, from the want of those comforts to which they had been accustomed, and the closeness of their cells, suffered very severely from diseases of different kinds. These evils, and the still more grievous ones arising from their being crowded promiscuously into the same apartment, instead of being placed under the guidance of those who cared for the welfare of their souls, were felt by Howard as of so serious a nature, as to justify him in devoting the remainder of his life to their remedy.

Mean time the fame of the Philanthropist's labours having reached parliament, a bill was brought in "for the relief of acquitted prisoners, in matter of fees," and another "for preserving the health of the prisoners." The committee appointed for these bills, anxious to avail themselves of his information and advice, called upon him to give evidence before them. "The answers he gave," says one of his biographers," to the questions put to him, were so much to the point, the simple statement of the scenes of misery, he had witnessed, was given with so much feeling and simplicity, and the remarks he made as to the best means of remedying the evils, were so judicious, that, on the motion of Sir Thomas Clavering, a vote of thanks was unanimously given him for the humanity and zeal which had led him to visit several jails of the kingdom, and for the important information, respecting them, he had communicated." Our limits, we regret, do not allow us to enter more fully into a detail of his unwearied labours, in the cause of the friendless prisoner. Let us merely say that, to the last moment of his life, be continued their warm and active advocate, undertaking several tours through every country in Europe, with the view of discovering, and publishing several works for the purpose of making known, their grievances. But thinking (according to the old maxim) that nothing was done while any thing remained yet undone, he did not rest satisfied with his researches into the state of prisons, but resolved to inspect the hospitals, and houses of industry, in this and other countries. He had observed the rapid spread of contagion in hospitals, and to check this, he thought much might be done by good arrangement and skilful treatment. In all the towns he visited, he inspected hospitals suffering from these causes, and suggested to their managers important hints for their improvement, which he had afterwards the happiness to hear, in almost every case, were adopted, and had been found to lessen the extent of the evil.

Hitherto, in our hurried detail of the actions, we have too much overlooked the actor, and in our admiration of the firm and indefatigable spirit of the man, we have

taken no notice of, what, after all, was his highest praise, the principle from which he acted. For it was no vague and nameless feeling, but a steady well-grounded principle, that enabled him to brave such dangers, and endure such hardships. Nothing indeed but Christian principle could have prompted and sustained his exertions, and nothing but a constant looking to the cross of Christ could have justified him from the charge of madness in exposing himself to so many dangers. No doubt, we often hear of men, strangers to Religion, who can depict more vividly, and feel more deeply for the sufferings of their fellow-men, than perhaps Howard did; men who,

"Pampering the coward heart

With feelings all too delicate for use," are grieved with every sorrow that afflicts humanity, and ready to weep with every mourner; but when did we ever hear of these "amiable men" undertaking pilgrimages to discover and relieve distress, or exposing themselves in infected dungeons? No-feeling as a motive to action is weak and fickle. Keen and enthusiastic in its birth, it allows no difficulty; it can see no danger; but only let something delay the fulfilment of the good resolution, and time will completely efface it from the memory, or it will raise up another feeling as strong, and perhaps as good, which in turn will enjoy its hour of empire. Or to make the most favourable supposition, let us imagine a case in which the impulse from feeling is so powerful as to urge to instant action; even in this case, the conduct of the man under its government will be wavering and uncertain, and he will require, for every successive act, a new impulse. But let us not be misunderstood, we do not mean to say, that the feelings are not intended as occasional aids and incentives to works of benevolence, but only that used as the motive, and looked to as the sole guide of virtuous actions, they are altogether worthless. While, however, we maintain that it was religious principle that originated and sustained the efforts of Howard, it is but justice to his memory to add, that he was possessed of the warmest feelings that

"By nature tuned,

And constant disposition of his thoughts
To sympathy with man, he was alive

To all that was enjoyed, where'er he went,
And all that was endured."

But let us also add, that this very virtue of tenderness of heart, he frequently mentions in his journal as forming a great obstacle to works of benevolence.

No man ever thought more humbly of his own labours than Howard. "I am the plodder," said he, at one time," who collects materials for men of genius.' At another time we find him making the following sincere confessions of his unworthiness. "I have to record the goodness of God to the unworthiest of his creatures, in having experienced, for some days past, an habitual serious frame; much contrition for my sin and folly; power to apply to the blood of Jesus for pardon; faith solemnly to surrender myself and babe to him, begging the conduct and guidance of his Holy Spirit; more tenderness of conscience, I would humbly hope, and a greater fear of offending God; a temper more abstracted from the world; more resigned to life or death; thirsting for communion with God, as my Lord and my God. O the wonders of redeeming love! I, even I, have some faint hope, through the perfect righteousness and full atoning sacrifice of the divine Redeemer, I shall be made a monument of the free mercy of God, through Christ Jesus. Shout, O my soul! grace, grace: free, rich, sovereign, unbounded grace! To myself I cannot ascribe it. I am an ill and a hell-deserving creature ; but where sin hath abounded, I trust grace superabounds." And to give another instance of his unaffected humility. In 1787 when the Philanthropist's fame had spread over all Britain, some friends, anxious to express their admiration of his character, and their

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high esteem of his services to humanity, subscribed fifteen hundred pounds, or upwards, to raise a statue in his honour. Whenever this intended mark of respect was known to Howard, he addressed a letter to the subscribers, in which he expressed his "earnest wish that those who desired his future happiness and comfort, would withdraw their names from the subscription, and that the project might for ever be abandoned;" and shortly after writing that letter, on being asked "why he refused the honour that was tendered," he replied, "who that knows his own heart could receive it! Conscious of many sins and imperfections, I must always view with pain and abhorrence every attempt of my friends to bring me forward to public view, and public approbation." Of the decision and self-denial of Howard it is unnecessary to say any thing, for they are proverbial. Let us hasten, then, to the closing scenes of this good man's life. In December 1789, while engaged in inspecting the Russian military hospitals, he was called upon to visit a young lady of distinction, who was suffering from a severe attack of the epidemic. He, at first, refused to go, on the plea that he only visited the poor, but, on being strongly urged, he went reluctantly. He paid her two visits, and on the third day after her first attack, she died. Two days after this, he himself was seized with the same distemper, and finding that there was no probability of his recovery, he resolved to occupy the remainder of his time in preparing for death. He was now daily visited by Admiral Priestman, who, anxious to raise his spirits, made frequent attempts to change the conversation from the subject of death, to some less melancholy topic. "Priestman," said Howard, on one of these occasions, " you style this dull conversation, and endeavour to divert my mind from dwelling on death, but I entertain very different sentiments. Death has no terrors to me, it is an event to which I always look with cheerfulness, if not with pleasure; and be assured the subject is now more grateful to me than any other. I am well aware that I have but a short time to live. Had I lived freely, I might, perhaps, by altering my diet, have a chance of recovery; but my abstemious mode of living has rendered this impossible. The subject upon which I especially wish to see you is that of my funeral. There is a spot near the village of Dauphigny, where I should like to be interred; there let me be buried: but let me earnestly beg of you, as you value an old friend, not to allow any pomp or parade at my funeral, nor to suffer any monumental inscription whatever to be placed over my grave; but lay me quietly in the earth, place a sun-dial over the spot, and let me be forgotten." These were among the last words Howard spoke. A few days after (the 20th January 1790) he died. When his death was made public, the deepest sorrow was expressed by all classes, for all loved him as a friend to their common nature. He was buried at Dauphigny, a village near Cherson, and was honoured with a larger and more splendid funeral than corresponded with his expressed wishes, or than might have been expected in a place so far distant from his native country.

THE DIVINE BENEVOLENCE.
ILLUSTRATED BY FACTS DRAWN FROM GEOLOGY.

"Ir is illustrated by the nature of the soil resulting frou. the decomposition of the various rocks. Such decomposition, it is well known, is the origin of all soil: and we can see no reason in the nature of things, why the materials furnished by this process of disintegration should be adapted to the growth of those plants that are necessary for the sustenance and comfort of animals. But such is almost universally the case. True, there are wide deserts; but other causes (the chief of which is a periodical deficiency of moisture) besides the want

of power to sustain vegetation, mainly contribute to make them such. And in this adaptedness of soils for so great a variety of plants as are necessary for the support of a far greater variety of animal natures, we think we see a clear indication of divine benevolence.

"We discover similar indications in the disruption, elevation, dislocation, and overturning of the rocks in the crust of the globe. With few exceptions, the stratified rocks were originally deposited in nearly a horizontal position. But we now find them, the older strata especially, tilted up at all angles, and divided by numerous fissures, along which extensive lateral, vertical, and oblique movements have taken place; whereby the continuity of their layers has been destroyed, their edges made to overlap, and often whole mountains to exhibit the appearance of a mighty ruin. Into these fissures the unstratified rocks have been protruded in every possible mode, and are often piled up in the most irregular manner upon the stratified rocks, so that the impression made upon the mind of the observer is altogether one of the wildest disorder and desolation. We can hardly avoid the inference, that when we compare all this confusion with the beautiful order and harmony which nature, in all her other productions, exhibits, that we have at length got into the region of " chaos and old night;" and that it is the wreck of creation which we see; the terrific mementos, perhaps, of some former penal infliction upon a guilty race. But our impressions and inferences are hasty and erroneous. The scene before us is only a new mode for the exhibition of divine skill and benevolence. Suppose the strata had been left in a horizontal position, one of the consequences would have been, that all, or nearly all those beds and veins of limestone, coal, and metallic ores, that are now so extensively wrought in almost every country, would have remained for ever hidden in the depths of the earth. But the elevation and dislocation of the strata bring them to view, and facilitate their exploration. Now, consider what would be the condition of man if deprived of lime, coal, and the metals. Was there no design, no benevolence, then, in the means by which they were brought within the reach of man?

“Design and benevolence are exhibited in the production and arrangement of the valleys that chequer the earth's surface. And most of these valleys were originally produced by the same elevating and dislocating agency which we have seen to be so serviceable in other respects. For, had the strata never been thrown up and disarranged, the earth's surface must have remained a dead level, and the sea would have covered the whole of it. Or, if we suppose dry land to have existed, yet without valleys, water could have existed on it only in stagnant ponds and lakes. Morasses, and the rank vegetation of low and wet regions would have filled the atmosphere with pestilential miasms; and, indeed, have rendered the globe uninhabitable by such natures as now dwell upon it. In consequence of the existence of valleys, the water, raised by evaporation, and falling upon the mountains, finds its way to the great ocean, keeping itself and the atmosphere pure by its agitations, affording a wholesome beverage to all classes of animals, and sustenance to the whole vegetable kingdom; and aiding, in a thousand ways, to fill the world with beauty, life, and happiness. But without such an arrangement of valleys as now diversify its surface, this great system of circulation could not be carried on.

"All existing valleys, however, cannot be imputed to the original elevation and disruption of the strata. But in this mode were most of them commenced; though without subsequent modification, they would have been only frightful rocky chasms. Powerful diluvial and fluvial action, therefore, has been repeatedly permitted to operate upon the sides and bottoms of these valleys, to wear away their angular projections, and fill up their deep and irregular cavities with soil, so as to give them

those pleasing curves which most of them now exhibit, and to render them capable of cultivation. In most level countries, this diluvial and fluvial agency has produced all the valleys that exist, and which are generally sufficient to form the beds of rivers, and redeem their banks from waste and desolation.

"We find, then, that we are indebted to the volcanic power within the earth, and to the aqueous agency that has so repeatedly and powerfully swept over its surface, not only for bringing to the light of day the mineral resources of the globe, but for all that diversity of surface which gives so much beauty and grandeur to the landscape, and is indispensable for the circulation of a fluid, whose motion is prolific of beauty and life, but whose stagnation is death. Can we any longer doubt, that there is design and benevolence in the apparent disorder and ruin of the crust of our globe? Surely here is design in the midst of confusion; beauty spreads over a scene, which, under another aspect, seemed but desolation and ruin, and the kind visage of benevolence beams upon us, where just before we saw only the flashes of an avenging Deity's wrath.

"We derive another evidence of divine benevolence from the mode in which metallic ores are distributed among the rocks. If the great mass of the globe has been formerly in a state of fusion, as nearly all geologists now admit, the useful metals, being for the most part the heaviest materials of the earth, would have occupied the centre, and become enveloped by rocks and earth, so as to be for ever inaccessible to man. But either through the expansive force of internal fires, or by sublimation from the same cause, or by the operation of galvanic agents, or in some other unknown method, a portion of these metals is disposed in the form of veins in nearly all the rocks at the surface. That the great mass of these metals is actually accumulated in the central parts of the globe, is probable from the very great specific gravity (about twice that of granite) of the internal portions of the earth. Now, what but divine benevolence should thus, in apparent opposition to gravity, have forced towards the surface just enough of the metals to serve the important purposes of human society for which they are employed? They might have been thrown in immense masses, and in a metallic state, over that surface; but the fact that industry alone can now obtain them, is another proof of design and benevolence, since this virtue is of more importance to human happiness than even the metals.

"And is not the relative proportion as to quantity in which the different metals are found, another evidence of the provident foresight and benevolent care of the Deity? Iron, by far the most useful, is far the most abundant, and most easily accessible. Of lead and copper, which are extremely important, but not so indispensable as iron, there is no lack at a moderate price. And as we proceed along the scale of the useful metals, we shall find, for the most part, that the quantity of the metal is proportioned to its utility. The very scarcity of gold and silver gives them their value; for, were they as abundant as iron, their use as a circulating medium must be abandoned. Yet, scarce as they are, their astonishing ductility and malleability enable the artist to spread them over an immense extent of surface, and thus to employ their most valuable property, that of resisting oxidation, on a scale nearly commensurate with the wishes of man. In all these facts, can we fail to recognise a wisdom and benevolence which God only can possess?

"The accumulations of rock salt, gypsum, limestone, and coal, in the earth in past ages, affords another exhibition of divine foresight and benevolence. Geologists are agreed that all these substances were produced in a gradual manner, though as to the mode in which the two former were accumulated, they have not the most satisfactory evidence; but the origin of the various,

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