King's Business - 1920-03



PRIDE OF MAN. T THE clpse of that excel­ lent little manual entitled, “ The Solar System,” written by Dr. Dick, we find an elo­ quent passage which beauti­ fully expounds this text: A survey of the solar sys­

this deplorable propensity in human be­ ings, than those which are borrowed from the objects connected with astron­ omy. They show us what an insignifi­ cant being— what a mere atom, indeed, man appears amidst the immensity of creation! Though he is an object of the paternal care and mercy of the Most High, yet he is but as a grain of sand to the whole earth, when compared to the countless myriads of beings that people the amplitudes of creation. What is the whole of this globe on which we dwell compared with the solar system, which contains a mass of matter ten thousand times greater? What is it in comparison to. the hundred millions of suns and worlds which by the telescope have been descried throughout the starry regions? What, then, is a king­ dom, a province, or a baronial territory, of which we are as proud as if we were the lords of the universe and for which we engage in so much devastation and carnage? What are they when set in competition with the glories of the sky? Could we take our station on the lofty pinnacles of heaven, and look down on this scarcely distinguishable speck of earth, we should be ready to exclaim with Seneca, “ Is it to this little spot that the great designs and vast desires of men are confined? Is it for this there is so much disturbanpe of nations, sc much carnage, and so many ruinous wars? Oh, the folly of deceived men, to imagine great kingdoms in the com­ pass of an atom, to raise armies to de­ cide a point of earth with the sword!” Dr. Chalmers, in his Astronomical Dis­ courses, very truthfully says, “We gave you but a feeble image of our compar­ ative insignificance, when we said that the glories of an extended forest would suffer no more from the fall of a sin­ gle leaf, than the glories of this ex­ tended universe would suffer though the globe we tread upon, ‘and all that it inherits, should dissolve.’ ”

tem has a tendency to moderate the pride of man and to promote humility. Pride is one of the distinguishing char­ acteristics of puny man, and has been one of the chief causes of all the con­ tentions, wars, devastations, systems of slavery, and ambitious projects which have desolated and demoralized our sinful world. Yet there is no disposi­ tion more incongruous to the character and circumstances of men. Perhaps there are no rational beings throughout the universe among whom pride would appear more unseemly or incompatible than in man, considering the situation in which he is placed. He is exposed to numerous degradations and calam­ ities, to the rage of storms and tem­ pests, the devastations of earthquakes and volcanoes, the fury of whirlwinds, and the tempestuous billows of the ocean, to the ravages of the sword, famine, pestilence, and numerous dis­ eases; and at length he must sink into the grave, and his body must become the companion of worms! The most dignified and haughty of the sons of men are liable to these and similar de­ gradations as well as the meanest of the human family. Yet, in such circum­ stances, man— that puny worm of the dust, whose knowledge is so limited, and whose follies are so numerous and glaring:—has the effrontery to strut in all the haughtiness of pride, and to glory in his shame. When other arguments and motives produce little effect on certain minds, no considerations seem likely to have a more powerful tendency to counteract

Made with FlippingBook - Online magazine maker