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of the survivors; that they would Nufa. In all these countries, not make it the subject of their conver- only cities and mountains rose in sation; that the tradition would honour of the righteous patriarch, be long continued and far extend- but the same traditions of the flood ed; that places would be nam- were extended. In all these coun: ed; that publick proceflions, facred tries, beside other circumstances rites, and solemn festivals would agreeing with fcripture, Noah is be instituted, having reference to said to have been preserved in an the amazing cataltrophe ; and ark. Philo afferts that Deucalion that, if idolatry succeeded, Noah and Noah were the same. The and his family would be among Grecians, he says, call the person the early objects of religious wor- Deucalion ; but the Chaldeans Thip. If such events are numer- stile him Noe, in whose time was a ous among ancient nations, they great irruption of water. Josewill be conclusive evidence of the phus says the flood was mentioned Hood; for why should there be in- in the writings of all, who treated stitutions to commemorate a del. of the first ages. He mentions uge, rather than a universal pesti- Berosus of Chaldea, Hieronymus lence or conflagration ? If there be of Egypt, Mnaseas, Abydenus, not traces of such institutions, near Melon, and Nicolaus Damafcenus. the scene of Noah's deliverance, Proceeding eastward we find the the lustre of the Mosaick history event becomes more certain, the will be clouded. We now proceed tradition more particular, and to the examination; but the limits more minutely conformable to the of the Panoplist permit only a small account of Moses. From the recportion of these facts to be brought ords of Babylon and Media Abyto view.
denus quoted, “that the flood The name of Noah was long pre- began on the fifteenth of Dasius, served among the nations of the that Seithrus sent out birds to east. He was called Noas, Naus, learn whether the food had suband Nous. Suidas has preserved fided ; that they returned ; that this tradition of him. “Nannaus," the third time their feet were stainfaith he, "foreseeing the deluge, ed with mud ; that he then quitted collected every body together, and the ark. “ He says, that the ark led them to a temple, where he rested on a mountain of Armenia. offered up prayers for them with Plutarch mentions the dove, fent many tears." His name has of- forth by Noah. But the most mi. ten become unlike itself, being nute Pagan account is from Lufashioned to the idiom of different cian. He was born on the banks nations; but the circumstances of of the Euphrates, where the tradihis history remain particular and tions and religious rites, minutely precise. By the Greeks he was represented the flood. Among called Dion ufus.
other things, he says, that the Cities and mountains bore the antediluvians were men of vioname of Noah or Nusa in Ara- lence, inhospitable, and unmerci. bia, Ethiopia, Egypt Babylonia, ful, regardless of oaths and laws, Thrace, Thessaly, Cilicia, Libya, for which they were destroyed ; Lydia, Macedonia, and Naxos. Al that for this purpose there was an In on Caucasus and Pelicon, in Eu- eruption of water from the earth, bea, and India, were places called with heavy rains from heaven. The rivers fwdled; the sea over- stance; this being a name of the flowed, the whole earth was covered, mountain, on which the ark restand, excepting Deucalion, alled, the same as Ararat. There feth were drowned. Animals of is a large mountain says Nicoevery species followed him into laus Damascenus, in Armenia, call. the ark by pairs.
ed Baris ; and there is a tradition, Most of these authors assert, that that in the deluge one person floatthe remains of the ark were vifi- ing in an ark, arrived at the sumble in their time, on a mountain mit of this mountain. of Armenia. Abydenus says, It is said, Sefoftris built a ship that the people used to carry piece of cedar, 280 cubits long, the out. es of the wood, as an amulet. side covered with gold, the inside Berofus says, they scraped off the with filver ; that he dedicated it asphaltus or pitch, as a charm. to Osiris at Thebes, an inland city Some of the christian fathers in- of Upper Egypt. It was doubt. fift, that the ark was in being in less a representation of the ark. their time. Theophilus says, its re. It was called Theba, as was the mains were -visible on a mountain city. Theba was the very name of Armenia. Chrysostom speaks of Noah's ark. He was ordered of the fact, as well known. to build an ark; in Hebrew, The« Do not,” says he, “ those ba. In other countries an ark was mountains of Armenia bear wit- among the mysteries of their reDess to the truth ; those mountains ligion, and carried about at their where the ark first rested; and are festivals. At Erathra, in Ionia, the not the remains preserved there to deity was represented upon a float, this day ?” So extensive was the in a temple of the highest antiquigentile history of the flood, varied ty. At Athens, at Phalerus, at indeed according to the manners Olympia, a fhip was carried in of different nations, yet retaining procession with great reverence. the material circumstances. Shrines were generally shaped in
So deeply affected, so devoutly the form of ships ; yea fhips and impressed were succeeding genera temples received their names from tions, that, in commemoration of this event, being tiled Naus and this terrible event, many particu- Naos, and failors Nautai, in refer. lars of it were incorporated with ence to the patriarch, Naos, Naus, their religious folemnities. The or Noah. When referring to the priests of Amon, at particular fea. deluge, the Greek writers always fons, carried in publick proceffion speak of an ark, and, though they a boat, in which was an oracular often call the fame person by variShrine, holden in great venera- ous names, they make all of them to tion. In Egypt was a similar be preserved in an ark. Thus Oficustom. These processions are ris, Comates, Deucalion, Perseus, carved in the temples of Upper and Dionusus, were all preserved Egypt. The ship Isis was a fa- in an ark. These are sufficient credemblem among the Egyptians, proofs, that the deluge was well in honour of which they had an known in the gentile world. annual festival ; the rite was bor- Many colonies stiled themselves towed by the Romans. The Thebeans, from Thebe, an ark. name of the thips and shrines Hence many cities were called was Baris, a remarkable circum- Theba, as in Egypt, Bocotia, Cilicia, Ionia, Attica, Syria, Italy, called the ship of Oris. Plu. and other countries. Kibotos is tarch says, the vessel in the sacred another name of the ark used by sphere, which the Grecians call the writers of the new Testament. the Argo, represented the ship of This name the Greeks probably Ofiris, which, from reverence, had borrowed from the Eait. Accord been placed in the heavens. The ingly, a haven in Egypt and a precise meaning of Argus is an city of great antiquity in Phrygia ará, fynonimous with Theba. bore this name. A coin of Philip, When the ark of God was to be the elder, Itruck at this place, had restored to the Ifraelites, presents on the reverse a history of the flood of atonement were put into an arin miniature. A square vel- gus. As colonies went abroad, sel or ark is graven, in which are called Thebeans, or Arkites, and a man and woman; over the built cities, called Theba or Ark; ark fits a dove ; below is an- fo were many cities in different other on the wing, holding a countries called Argos, as in small branch in its mouth. Before Theffaly, Bæotia, Epirus and șithe ark a man and woman feem cily. In all which places is the juit to have left it, underneath the tradition of Deucalion and the person is the word Noe. The ark. The whole Peloponnesus gentiles reckoned the ark, as a was once called Argos. The an. temple, and the residence of the cients described the ark, as a luDeity ; and the persons saved nette, or half moon ; it was therewere finally considered, as deities. fore called Meen, which fignifies a Hence the ancient gods of Egypt moon, and a crescent became its were precisely eight. Agreeably fymbol. Of course the patriarch with scripture the ancient writers was called Meen, and Menes, and always represent Noah, as the first was worshipped in all the nations after the deluge who built an al- of the East, as Deus Lunus, or tar to God, planted a vineyard, the Lunar God. This Lunar and made wine.
God, according to Strabo, had In the delineation of the sphere, temples erected for his worship in though altered in the hands of the Phrygia, in Pifidia, and in many Greeks, there remains evidence, other places. that reference was had to the del- In these facts we fee how'exuge. According to Hegesianax, tensive and permanent was the reA quarias was Noah or Deucalion. membrance of the deluge. Is it Berosus relates that Noah was rep. poñible for any man to read, and resented by a filh, and Hyginus impartially consider these things, speaks of the filhes on the sphere, and reject the account of Noah's as representations of persons, and food? Is it conceivable, that such mentions from Eratosthenes, that uniformity of religious rites, such the fith Notas was the father of uniformity of names, of hieromankind. Tradition relates, that glyphicks, and traditions exists by the raven was sent on a message by chance? As well may a palace or Apollo, and never returned ; this city rise by chance from the fands bird is placed in the sphere ; and of Africa, or the forests of Amerthere is Argo, the sacred Thip; ica. formed by divine wisdom. This [To be continued.) was the ark of Noah, sometimes
For the Panoplist. proof of your candour, by acknowle Letters to a brother, a young man of fashion. edging what, I apprehend, is capaLETTER I.
ble of abundant confirmation, that
the early religion of New England ON THE IMMUTABILITY OF RELIGION.
was, in substance, the same with Dear Brother,
primitive christianity. It is often a subject of re- added, what is called orthodoxy gret, that I can so seldom enjoy might bevery well fitted for men just Four company.
But be assured, delivered from the idols of paganoor long separations do not dimin- ism, for men beginning to emerge ish that love, which began to glow from the darkness and superstition in my breast at your birth, and con- of popery, and for men exiled from stantly grew with your growth. their country by the hand of persecuWith what sensations of mingled tion, and employed in es!ablishing pleasure and gloom do I recall the the rudiments of learning and piety jears of our childhood and youth. in the American wilderness. But How pleasing were the scenes, that religion is not necessary for men through which we passed. How of better education and more refined many the advantages we enjoyed. morals. In short, you gave it as Our parents, now sleeping in death, your opinion, that there is no need Fere tender, exemplary and pious. of supposing the doctrines and exSuch parents ought to be recorded ercises of religion to be at all times among the best gifts of heaven. precisely the same, but that they May we never forget their excel- may undergo a change correspondlent instructions, their worthy ing with the great changes which characters, their anxious concern take place in society. for our good.
Bear with me, dear brother, Through what scenes have we while I attempt, with the freedom both passed since our father's de- which warm affection inspires, to cease. Divine Providence has fa- expose the fallacy and danger of voured you with uninterrupted such an opinion. This I do in obebealth and prosperity, and finally dience to the solemncharge,which placed you in a very eligible situa- I received from our dying father. tion. But while I rejoice in your My son, said he, with a faltering worldly prosperity, my joy is not voice, that God who has been pleaswithout abatement. It is painful ed to take your amiable mother to to this heart of mine, which so ten- himself, now calls for me. I earderly loves you, to think of the dan- nestly recommend you to his mercy. gers attending your present flour- And I desire you to consider the ishing condition ; especially as the tender age of your dear little brothcircle of your particular friends is er. I know your affection for him. removed far from the examples, I charge you to take care of his soul. which we were early taught to Now as I write in the name of our venerate.
honoured father, and shall defend You know not, my dear brother, that religion, which animated him with what emotions I heard you in life, and consoled him in death ; say, when I was last at your house, I am sure that you, to whom his that the religion of the faihers of New memory is so dear, will peruse England, though well enough adapt. what I write with seriousness and ed to their condition, is by no means candour. suited to this enlightened, polished The first consideration which ege. You gave to all present a occurs, is, the immutability of God, the object and the author of all true gressive cultivation of reason will religion. Although human things add any thing to revelation. Nor are all subject to change; although has he empowered us to lay aside, your temporal affairs now so pros- as obsolete, any part of revealed perous, may tomorrow be in the truth, and substitute in its place the most calamitous state ; although improvements of human wisdom. the revolutions of the age may de- The precepts or practical rules molish institutions, which have of religion are also from God, and been the boast of other times ; al- are therefore immutable. Jesus though rising improvements in the spoke not the language of modern arts and sciences may obliterate fashionable religion, when he said, every trace of former ignorance“ Think not that I am come to deand weakness ; still God is the stroy the law or the prophets. I same yesterday, today, and forever. am not come to destroy, but to fulNow that religion which has the fil. It is easier for heaven and unchangeable God for its object, earth to pass away, than one jot or and essentially consists in conform- tittle of the law to fail.” God's ity to his holy character, must be law, my brother, admits no alteraunchangeable. Since the life of tion, and is no respector of persons. our parents, since the days of our It requires the same duties of the forefathers, or since the age of the rich and the poor, of the learned apostles, has there been any change and theignorant, of the refined and in Jehovah, which makes it proper the vulgar, of the king on his to render him a religious service throne, and the servant of meanest less humble, less strict, solemn, name. It laid equal obligations on and evangelical, than that which polished Greeks and wild barbarithey rendered ?
The accomplished Saul, The immutable God is not only when divinely taught the unthe object, but the author of all true changeable strictness and perfecreligion. The doctrines or truths tion of the law, found himself upof religion are contained in the on a level with the greatest crimivolume of inspiration. They were nals. The law being once publishwritten there, my brother, by the ed by the unchangeable Jehovah, finger of God. The tenets of hea- can never be altered, except by the then philosophy, passing through authority of him who made it. the hands of changeable men, who But has God ever authorized us to niodelled them as they would, had lower the precepts of the law, or no fixed, invariable stamp. But the gospel, and to ada them to the doctrines of revelation, coming the varying manners and situations from an unchangeable source, are of men? Are not they who possess the same in all ages. God is the the greatest advantages of fortune, author of only one system of relig- under as high obligations to obey ious truth. He has not, since the the commands of Christ, as they apostles’day, introduceda new sys- who possess the least ? Consider tem, nor altered that which was those preceptsofchristianity, which given to them. That which they require the greatest strictness of believed, which, yougrant, differed religion, the most unreserved denot materially from that which our votion to God. ~ Whosoever will pious ancestors believed, is that come after me, let him (leny himself, which we must believe. The au- take up the cross, and follow me. If thor of all religious truth has not thy right eye offend thee, pluck it taught us to expect, that the pro- out, and cast it from thee. If thy