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LET. are brought forward, we must endea

vour to answer them. And notwithstanding the jokes of these gentlemen about the pillory, one or other of us, I am afraid, will be found to deserve

it.

P. 5.“ Did God create light be“ fore the sun?”

Most assuredly. Why not? When the orb of the sun was formed on the fourth day, it became the appointed receptacle of light, from whence that glorious fluid was to be dispensed, for the benefit of the system. Before the formation of the folar orb, light was supported in action by some other means, as seemed good to the Creator. The earth might be made to revolve by the same agency, and then another question is answered ; " How could e time be divided into days, before

" the creation of the sun; since a day let: " is the time between sun rise and fun X. “ rise ? "

P. 5. “ How could God divide the “ light from darkness, since darkness “is nothing but the mere privation 6 of light?”

The light was divided from the darkness, as it is now, by the interposition of the earth. This is plain, because it follows, “ God called the " light Day, and the darkness he 6 called Night.” Day was the state of the hernisphere, on which light irradiated ; and Night was the state of the opposite hemisphere, on which rested the shadow projected by the body of the earth. I see no absurdity in all this. But may not the assertion, that « darkness is only the hab mere privation of light," be con

24 troverted ?

LET. troverted? When Moses says, that
X.

“ darkness was upon the face of the
" deep,” he did not mean that no-
thing was there. Of the darkness in
Egypt it is said, that it “ might be
felt.And if the fire at the solar
orb could be suddenly extinguished,
would not the whole body of the
celestial fluid instantly become a tor-
pid congealed mass, and bind the
creation in chains of adamant ? At
the beginning, “ light was formed
“ out of darkness; " and therefore
may not the truth be this? In fcrip.
ture language, may not light be the
celestial fluid, in a certain condition,
and a certain degree of motion; and
darkness the same fluid in a different
condition, and without that degree
of motion, or when such motion is
interrupted by the interposition of an

opake

opake body? A room, for example, LET. is full of light. Close the shutters, X. and that light instantly disappears. But what is become of it? It is not annihilated. No: the substance, which occasioned the sensation of light to the eye, is still present, as before, but occasions that sensation no longer. Let philosophers consider, and determine.

P. 5. “ How could the firmament “ be created, since there is no firma“ ment, and the false notion of it's " existence is no more than an imagi“ nation of the ancient Grecians ?”

Never again let critics, while they live, undertake to censure the writings of an author, before they understand something of the language in which he wrote. The Greek version of the LXX has indeed given us the word sipewud, which has produced in our tranlation the corresponding word

LET. firmament. But these terms by no

means furnish us with the true idea of the original word, which is derived from a verb signifying, to spread abroad, expand, enlarge, make thin, &c. The proper rendering then is, the expansion. But expansion of what? Doubtless, of the celestial Auid before mentioned, of light, air, æther, or whatever you please to call it. In Scripture it is styled the heavens." Who “ stretcheth out the heavens like a « curtain !*_That stretcheth out the “ heavens as a curtain, and spreadeth " them out as a tent to dwell in.”+ How far this expansion of the heavens extends, is another question. That portion of it diffused around the earth is we!l known by the name of the atmx osphere ; and it's force may at any * Pf. civ. f Ifai. XL. 22.

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