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The Incomprehensibility of the Deity.

The Incomprehensibility of the Deity.

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Published by glennpease
BY HENRY COLMAN.

JOB XI. 7.

CANST THOU BY SEARCHING FIND OUT GOD ? CANST THOU FIND OUT THE ALMIGHTY UNTO PERFECTION ?
BY HENRY COLMAN.

JOB XI. 7.

CANST THOU BY SEARCHING FIND OUT GOD ? CANST THOU FIND OUT THE ALMIGHTY UNTO PERFECTION ?

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Published by: glennpease on Sep 26, 2013
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THE ICOMPREHESIBILITY OF THE DEITY.BY HERY COLMA.PART I,JOB XI. 7.CAST THOU BY SEARCHIG FID OUT GOD ? CAST THOUFID OUT THE ALMIGHTY UTO PERFECTIO ?Is there, my brethren, a reflecting mind, whichhas not been confounded in its inquiries respect-ing the Deity? The proofs of the existence of God are obvious and irresistible. It is inscribedon every object. The eye of rehgious philo-sophy perceives it in every plant, which springsout of the ground ; in every animal, that inhabitsthe earth, the air, or the sea; and in every star,which sheds its radiance on the face of night.The testimonies of his presence and providenceconstantly occur to our notice. They descend onthe beams of every returning sun and every al-ternate moon. They breathe in the fragrance of 210 ICOMPREHESIBILITVspring; they glow in the splendour of summer:they present themselves anew in the fruits ol"autumn ; and to the devout mind, even the re-pose, and solitude, and desolation of winter, andits fertilizing frost and snow proclaim the be-neficent providence of God. Tlic exhibitionsof his wisdom, power, and goodness, in infinite
 
varieties of form and motion, of beauty andmagnificence, every where crowd upon our ob-servation.Yet this great author of all nature, thisspring of all action, this Ibuntain of all enjoy-ment, this all-pervading spirit, this omniscient in-tellect remains always unseen, unheard, and in-accessible. He seems to recede from us, as weattempt to explore the immensity of his being.We cannot by searching find out God ; we can-not find out the Almighty unto perfection. In-superable obstacles cross the path of our inqui-ries ; uncertainty or imperfection is intermingledwith some of our most elaborate conclusions:clouds, which we cannot dissipate, hover overour views of the divine nature.We purpose on this occasion to sketch thecauses of this obscurity ; and to inquire, what in-fluence this fact should have on our sentimentsand conduct.OP THE DEITY. 11I. A principal cause of the difficulties, withwhich our inquiries respecting- the nature of theDeity are embarrassed, is found in the limitednature of our capacities.Man is a child, and in this world will alwaysremain at school. In the highest stages of in-tellectual improvement, to which he has everadvanced, he remains an Ignorant being. I amnot disposed to degrade the nature, which Godhas given to the rational beings, whom he hasplaced on this earth. I would not deny the sub-tilty and acuteness of that wisdom, which has
 
distinguished the labours of man ; nor refuse thehomage, which is due, to those exertions of in-tellect, by which he is able to determine andpredict the revolutions of the amazing globes,that roll in silent magnificence through the bound-less expanse ; nor to those ardent and indefatiga-ble powers, by which he has explored the pro-found recesses of nature and unveiled some oiher mysterious operations ; nor to that extraor-dinary combination of knowledge, invention, andskill, by which he has subjected to his controlmany of the most powerful agents in nature, andrendered them subservient to his purposes. Yetthe subjects, of which man remains in ignorance,infinitely exceed those, with which l»e has madehimself acquainted; and what he his already12 ICOMPREHESIBILITYlearnt cannot bear a comparison with the know-ledge, to which it seems possible and probablethat he may attain.Is not human power often compelled to ac-knowledge, that it can do no more ; and humanpenetration, that it can advance no further ? Doesnot our perception soon become indistinct by dis-tance, and are not our speculations frequently be-wildered in inexplicable mazes, or driven back from palpable and impenetrable darkness ? Man'shighest discoveries have often terminated onlyin a consciousness of his own ignorance. Thesoaring of an eagle may, with far more proprie-ty, be compared to the path of a comet, than theloftiest flights of philosophy to the immeasura-ble extent, which remains to be traversed ; andthe sublimest excursions of the astronomer havenot brought him but to the entrance of the works

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