Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing (epiphany) of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Titus 2:13
from -1.2 to -2.5; Mars from -2.1 to -2.7; Saturn varies from 1.4 to -0.3. The magnitude of the sun is -26.7, and of the average full moon is -12.5. We might say that when a star varies in magnitude because of its being eclipsed by another star, it is called an eclipsing variable. These remarks will help us better to appreciate the following remarks on variable stars.
The constellation Cepheus has a number of variable stars. Delta Cephei, i.e., Delta (Greek D) of Cepheus is one of its variable stars, indeed, is a type of the variables in Cepheus. Its magnitude varies from 3.7 to 4.6; and it makes this change back and forth regularly every 5.37 days. Mu (Greek M) Cephei is the reddest star seen by the naked eye, and varies irregularly between 4.0 and 4.8. Cassiopeia is the W or M (according to its position) shaped constellation near the polar star. The star of the W which is farthest from Polaris is called Schedir. Its brightness varies irregularly from magnitude 2.2 to 2.8. The star Epsilon (Greek E) Aurigae, the one nearest to Capella, the brightest of Auriga's stars, varies in magnitude from 3.4 to 4.1 within a period of 9,900 days, which is more than 27 years. This is the longest known period of a variable. Additionally it is an eclipsing variable. It goes through this form of its variableness more rapidly than through its own (uneclipsing) variableness; for it decreases in brightness 180 days, remains at a minimum 340 days, then returns to its own brightness in 180 days. It made one of these eclipses from June 1, 1928, to May 2, 1930. And during this time, of course, it was doing its own varying as a part of its 9,900 days' variableness. The star in Taurus that with Taurus V makes a Y is Lambda (Greek L) Tauri. This is both an eclipsing and a variable star. Its magnitude changes regularly from 3.3 to 4.2 and returns to its original magnitude every 3.95 days. Certainly this, as in the case of Delta Cephei, is rapid variableness. The middle star in the bottom line of Gemini's Z is Zeta (Greek Z)
Geminorum. It is a well known variable, whose degree of variableness is 3.7 to 4.3, and whose period of variableness is 10.15 days. Another of Gemini's stars, Eta (Greek E) Geminorum, is a variable. It varies irregularly between the magnitudes of 3.2 and 4.2, a whole magnitude, on an average of 232 days. In the parallelogram of Aquila; the star in the middle of its southern side is the variable Eta Aquila, which varies from 3.7 to 4.5, returning to its original brightness every 7.18 days. This, again, is very rapid variation and strikes the thoughtful mind as wondrous indeed.
The most remarkable of all variable stars is Eta Carinae. It was first noted in 1677 and was of magnitude 4. Later it was observed to be of magnitude 2. Its variability was discovered in 1827, after it had become very bright. In 1843 it was the brightest of all stars except Sirius, remaining among the brightest stars until in 1858 it dimmed to magnitude 2. In a year it was of magnitude 3 and by 1868 it was invisible to the naked eye. In 1886 it reached magnitude 7.6 and has continued such ever since. Near the east end of Hydra is R Hydrae. Its variableness is one of the greatest of all variable stars, changing its magnitude as it does from 4.0 to 9.8, reverting to its original magnitude every 425 days. While its full period of variableness is much longer than some above indicated, its variableness is enormous, being nearly six magnitudes, i.e., at is greatest brightness it is nearly 250 times brighter than at its dimmest. This we cannot otherwise regard than wondrous. Chi Cigni varies still more, from 4.0 to 13.5, its period being 405 days. Algol in Perseus consists of two stars that eclipse one another regularly every 2⅞ days. It remains at about 2.1 for two days and 11 hours, then decreases in magnitude to 3.2 in five hours, and then returns to its original brightness in five hours. Wondrous! Other notable variables are: Alpha Herculis (3.1 to 3.9), Beta Lyrae (3.4 to 4.1, period 12.9 days), R Lyrae (4.0 to 4.7), Beta Pegasi
(2.2 to 2.7), the irregularly varying Myra [wonderful] in Cetus (1.7 to 9.6, period 331 days), Rho Persei (3.4 to 4.2), I Carinae (3.6 to 5.0, period 35.5 days), R Carinae (4.5 to 10.0, period 309 days), Beta Doradi (3.7 to 4.6, period 10 days), L2 Puppis (3.4 to 6.2, period 140 days) and V Puppis (4.1 to 4.8, period 1.4 days). Certainly the variableness of the magnitudes in some stars partakes of the quality of wondrousness.
Wondrousness also characterizes the stars that are multiple, i.e., there are quite a number of stars and star clusters each of which appears to the naked eye to be but a single star, but which by the aid of the opera glass or telescope are seen to be two or more stars. This phenomenon is due to various causes. Sometimes the stars that form a multiple are very near to one another, so near as to revolve about one another; in other cases they are very far apart, but the angle at our eye between them is very small, so small as to be often less than a second, i.e., 1/3600 of a degree. We will remark on several examples of these. The most frequently occurring of these multiples are double stars. The first double star was deciphered as such by jean Baptiste Riccioli in 1650. It is Mizar, the middle star in the handle of the Great Dipper. The two components of Mizar are 15 seconds apart. Yet so far are they from us that their actual distance apart is about 30,000,000,000 miles. The discovery that Mizar is a double star was soon followed by the discovery of others. Theta Orionis was resolved into a double star in 1656, Gamma Arietis in 1664, Alpha Crucis and Alpha Centauri in 1685 and 1689 respectively. The principle of strict measurement of double stars is due to the work of Sir William Herschel, to whom Astronomy is indebted for much of other splendid and wonderful work. Soon the number of double stars discovered was very greatly increased. It is now recognized that of the naked-eye stars, one in every nine is under telescopic vision found to be double.
And of the nearest known stars, eight out of every twenty are double. Such near stars give the best opportunity of observation as to their doubleness. In 1928 there were 15,000 double stars catalogued; but greater numbers have since been catalogued.
Genuine multiple stars are those which have in common a proper motion. This would rule out of the catalogued genuine multiple stars such as appear multiple but are not at all related to one another by a common motion. There were by 1928 catalogued 120 double stars whose orbits were accurately measured. About 700 others had orbits less accurately measured. The shortest orbital periods so far discovered are 5.7 years, for Delta Equulei, and 6.9 years, for 13 Ceti. About 60 pairs have periods of orbital revolution within less than 100 years. With such double stars, in some of them each revolves about the other, and in others one of them is relatively stationary and the other does the revolving. Among the most noted of double stars are the two dog stars, Sirius in Canis Major and Procyon in Canis Minor. It will be recalled that above we mentioned the very great density of the smaller component of Sirius. The smaller component of Sirius is ten magnitudes less than its larger component, while the smaller one of Procyon is thirteen magnitudes smaller than its larger one. But some multiple stars have more than two members. It was stated in the preceding paragraph that Alpha Centauri, the star nearest our earth, was in 1689 discovered to be double; but under observation by larger telescopes than were had in 1689 it has been found to consist of three stars. More remarkable still is the fact that Polaris consists of four stars. Still more wonderful is the fact that Castor consists of six stars and his twin companion Pollux consists of eight stars! Theta Orionis, which was the second star found to be double (1656), under observation has been found to be a nucleus of four stars for a many starred system, whose number
is being so continually enlarged that it will be doubtless many years before the exact number of the components of this multiple star will be definitely known. Certainly the phenomenon brought to our attention in connection with multiple stars is one that emphasizes wondrousness as an attribute of God's creative works.
Another feature of wondrousness marking God's creative works in the heavens is the fact of temporary stars. Sometimes there suddenly appears a star never observed before, i.e., the position where it is found was even to a telescope formerly vacant. It will then shine quite brilliantly awhile, and then after irregularly shining with decreasing brightness will disappear even to the largest telescopes. These are called temporary stars. Some have ineptly called them new stars. Up to the present there have appeared about 50 of these, so far as the records show most of them appearing in modern times. The earlier ones had to be visible to the naked eye, since no telescopes then existed. Since 1900 at least five of them have reached a magnitude of 4.5. In 1918 one appeared which for awhile became nearly as bright as Sirius. Such a bright star, of course, naturally was discovered by amateurs as well as by regular astronomers. Of course, the brightest of such variable stars could be discovered by the naked eye. They usually make their appearance in the Milky Way. So far, no star brighter than one of magnitude 10 in the beginning ever appeared as a temporary star. No regular star has been known to appear and disappear. Nor has any temporary star known as such ever become a permanently known star. This matter of temporary stars is one of the unsolved problems of astronomy. The star of Bethlehem might perhaps have been a temporary star, making at least two appearances and two disappearances; first appearing and disappearing to the magi in the East (in their own country), then appearing after they left Herod and leading them to Bethlehem and resting over the
house where the child was, and then disappearing. But it is more likely that this star was an angel, whose brightness and nearness gave the impression of a miraculous star to the magi, the Bible describing the matter from their viewpoint.
As on pp. 230 and 231 we quoted from Dr. Harlow Shapley, Director of the Harvard University Observatory, on some features of the Larger Magellanic Cloud, so would we here quote from Dr. Barton of the University of Pennsylvania on both of the Magellanic Clouds: "In the Southern Hemisphere there are two cloud patches which resemble the Milky Way in appearance, but which are too far away from it to be considered parts of it. They are called the 'Larger Magellanic Cloud' and the 'Smaller Magellanic Cloud,' from the name of the early navigator who described them. They are also called nubecula major [larger dark spot] and nubecula minor [smaller dark spot]. The larger one is on the border line between [the constellations] Dorado and Mensa; and the smaller one is in [the constellation] Tucana. Both consist of faint stars, nebulae and star clusters … Dr. Harlow Shapley … estimates that there are 500,000 stars in the smaller cloud, which can be detected, and that about 10,000 are more than 1,000 times, and perhaps 400 more than 10,000 times as bright as the sun. From that distance [85,000 light years] the sun would appear as a star of magnitude 22, which is just the limit of our most powerful photographing (reflecting) telescope. These two clouds are clearly seen with the naked eye, the larger being somewhat brighter. They are believed to be systems of stars entirely outside the system in which we are, that is, other universes. They are smaller than ours, however. The observer sees them as they were [approximately] 100,000 years before; and conversely an observer from one of these clouds would see the sun as it was 100,000 years before, if indeed he could see it at all. Excepting the nebula in
Andromeda … which is scarcely visible at all to the naked eye, the Magellanic Clouds are the most remote objects which can be seen without the aid of a telescope. When face to face with these objects, contemplating the facts which have been cited above, one must be callous indeed who is not stirred to deep thoughts and to reverent and ennobling feeling." Yea, the attribute of wondrousness, written everywhere in God's universe upon His creative works, calls upon us to stand in awe and worship; for "all Thy works praise Thee, O Lord; yea, all Thy works praise Thee"; for "the heavens declare the glory of God; and the expanse showeth His handiwork." They fill us with wonder, praise, adoration and worship.
Having discussed the following six attributes of creation: unity, immensity, beauty, sublimity, order and wondrousness, we will bring to a conclusion our discussion of creation's attributes by a consideration of the complexity of creation. By the complexity of creation we mean the intricacy in which the universe as a whole and in its parts has been made, exists and operates. Indeed, it is so complex as to baffle the comprehension of man, though he can understand many things in and about the universe. The three states in which substances can exist are complex: gases, liquids and solids. Water and iron are simple and common examples of these. In its gaseous condition what becomes water exists as two separate elements, oxygen and hydrogen. These compounded in volume proportions of two parts hydrogen and one part oxygen; and in weight proportion, one part of hydrogen and 7.94 parts of oxygen, make water. And at 32° Fahrenheit it becomes solid, ice. Thus it can exist in three states, counting vapor as a form of water. We know that iron also can exist in three states: as solid—the metal itself, as liquid—when melted by heat, and as gas—under very intense heat. We note that these substances have to undergo artificial manipulation by heat or
cold to change these states. The fact of the change is transparent; the philosophy of these changes is quite complex. All substances, of course, can be resolved into these three states by more or less complex processes. Apart from the 11 of the 92 elements that are gases, all the rest of the 92 elements, regardless of whether they are of the 9 solid non-metal or 71 metal or 1 fluid (mercury) elements, can be resolved into gases; and all of these can be resolved into fluids, except mercury, which is already a fluid. The constitution of these elements is likewise complex. As they progress from element 1 to element 92, the difference is a successive one of each atom having a different composition of one electron in the atom of the element from that of the atom of the element just below it in numerical order. Thus the chemical constitution of the 92 elements in our earth is highly complex, even as matter is highly complex, whether viewed in its gaseous, fluid or solid state. Thus the three forms of matter and its 92 elements confront the student with complexity in their constitution.
Certainly the process whereby from the original gases the universe has been produced is an exceedingly complex one. It is so complex that man without assuming as self-evident the agency of a Creator in manipulating the process at least in the outstart, is unable to give an intelligible explanation of the process. Indeed, it is so complex that after one solution (the nebular hypothesis) offered for the explanation of the process had held the field for a full century, it was found to be unsatisfactory from the standpoint of mathematics and physics and has now been abandoned by scientists, who have offered another hypothesis, the planetesimal or capture hypothesis. This hypothesis seems to be looking in the right direction; and yet who knows but further enlightenment on facts in the universe not yet clear may disprove it also? If we assume that matter in gaseous form is eternal, as is probably
the case, the Bible being silent on this subject, we must assume that it must have been absolutely quiescent for very long periods before motion was imparted to it; otherwise the universe would have come into existence incalculably many ages before it did; i.e., we must assume that the laws underlying gases neutralized one another's operation and this produced motionlessness. To start such quiescent gases into motion must have required the agency of an intelligent and purposeful being, so to manipulate these gases as to undo the neutralizing effect of its underlying laws and so direct their interrelations as to start them into working on one another in a way to condense these gases into more compact gases, and continuing this process until they were condensed into an attenuated liquid form. Under further manipulation of such attenuated liquid matter through the new laws underlying its constitution, it in process of time condensed into still more dense liquid form. Under further direction of the ever new arising natural laws, due to the solidifying of matter, the process continued until a very attenuated solid material substance was reached, and so continuing to advance, the process would ultimately reach a completion in the finished creation of suns, planets, moons, asteroids, comets, and meteors. But to operate such a condensing process from the beginning to the completion of the creative process in one and all solar systems is a thing of such complexity as to over-test human ingenuity, though extended to its utmost capacity. Thus simply as a process creation is exceedingly complex.
How exceedingly complex is the operation of each planet! Its axial movement is complex, implying a very ancient beginning, with an accelerated motion the denser the body became. And this movement is made all the more complicated, as gravitation, centrifugal, centripetal, cohesive, adhesive and repulsive forces operate upon this body. Such interacting forces, to produce the balance maintained by the planet in its axial
movement must be operated upon and operate in the most complex ways. Still more complex does this matter become when to the axial movement the orbital movement is added. Here again the original movement imparted to the planetary body that made it run in the way of an orbit was very complex; and to adjust the forces above-mentioned in such a way as to balance a planet in its orbital movement was a matter of complexity taxing and overtaxing the keenest human minds. They know some of the facts, can explain the actions of some of the factors entering into the problem, but to solve it they are unable. They can work out the mathematical formulas along the lines of which some of these motions go, but the whole subject in its details and the heart of the difficulties thence arising they are unable to explain. They must, one and all, in spite of their spelling out some of the words used in the problems of operating a planet, as to all the details, humbly confess, with the Psalmist, "It is too much for me!" Then the problem becomes all the more complex when we add to it the difficulties that arise from the operation of a family of planets, planetoids, moons and comets, in interrelations among, and yet in separation and distinctness from one another. When we consider the differences in their orbital speeds, the differences in their axial speeds, their proportionate distances and speeds, their harmony amid their differences, a series of problems on the how and the why, and much of the what are forced upon our attention, that very greatly complicates the matter; for the what, i.e., the facts of the case, are only partly well known, but how it is done and why it is done just so, puzzle the brightest human minds to stupefied perplexity. Thus each planet and its satellite or satellites present matters of great complexity to the thinking mind. This is made all the more complex when these planets, etc., are seen in their mutual relations and separate conditions.
And how much more complex does it all become when we consider these planets in relation to their sun. It rules them like an absolute monarch. It gives them liberty to move in their axial and orbital ways, but it enslaves them to just that rapidity of axial motion that it will allow, and forces them to follow the course of the orbits that it dictates. But it does not do this of its own unaided power. It must call upon the other suns, as well as the neighbor planets and moons, to lend it assistance to this end, through the operation of gravitational, centripetal, centrifugal, cohesive, adhesive, repellent forces, etc., and so by a most complex series of forces does it order them on their orbits and axes. Still more complex does the matter appear when we consider that the sun also has its own orbital and axial motion. And this makes it draw after it its retinue of planets in a spiral motion. From the outside, our solar system looks like an immense funnel, spirally moving around and around forever. How exceedingly complex does this spiral motion, this huge revolving funnel, become! If our solar system were the only one in which this remarkable phenomenon prevails, it would be complex enough. But add to this the thought that in our universe there are estimated to be 30,000,000,000 other suns, each having its own retinue of planets, etc., that the same complexity as is in our planet is in each of those planets, that the same complexity as is in our planetary system is in each of those planetary systems, that the same complexity as underlies the relations of our sun and its planets, etc., underly those 30,000,000,000 suns, with their some 300,000,000,000 planets and their still more numerous moons, planetoids and comets, and this complexity is very greatly increased. But this is not all. Our large reflecting telescopes have revealed many hundred millions of other universes than ours, all having their billions of suns and many more billions of planets, still many more billions of moons, and added
to these more billions of planetoids—illimitable depths of complexity! So inexpressibly complex is the entire matter as to force us to the conclusion that only an all-wise and almighty Being could make so vast a creation.
Above we mentioned the fact that our solar system moves in the form of a spiral. So do all the other solar systems! This is evident not only from the fact of the precession of the equinoxes, whereby about every 26,000 years the sun returns to the same relative position toward all the other suns in our universe as it sustained toward them about 26,000 years before; but it is also a matter of observation. The 100-inch reflecting telescope on Mt. Wilson has taken time pictures of the heavens that show these spiral shapes in many of the solar systems. In the Encyclopedia Britannica, 14th edition, Vol. 6, in the article on Cosmogony, over against pp. 488 and 492 are pictured six views of these spirals, which we are sure will greatly interest and instruct our readers on this subject. These pictures actually show the funnel-shaped positions of these suns; for be it noted that a vast number of suns go to constitute each one of these spiral funnel-shaped clusters of stars, e.g., there is a number of these spirals in Andromeda's nebula, every one of them consisting of myriads of suns. These are in another universe than ours. When we consider that in the millions of universes this spiral motion is everywhere carried out in proper balance with that of all other solar systems of each universe and that these universes, with all their complicated motions, all revolve about one common center, Alcyone in the Pleiades, and thus add almost infinitely to the complexity that we see in not only one solar system but all other solar systems of each universe, the idea of complexity is increased to an almost infinite degree. At any rate, under contemplation of these things our minds simply recoil upon themselves at the thought of our littleness and God's greatness!
"Great is the Lord and greatly to be praised!" It is even so.
This complexity is seen in the unity, in the diversity and in the harmony that subsist in God's creation. We have already pointed out a number of details on unity as an attribute of creation, but this unity exists in great complexity. When we view this unity as to matter, as to solar systems, as to universes, as to laws of nature, as to forces of nature, as to light, air, water, heat, ether, chemical affinity, sound, life-principle, inorganic and organic nature, and the vegetable and animal creation, it exhibits marvelous complexity. This complexity is evident in the diversity manifest throughout creation. Such diversity we see in the suns, planets, etc., the various universes, the chemical elements of the earth, the various laws underlying matter in its diversified forms, the diverse spheres of nature as these are seen in the various sciences, like astronomy, geology, dendrology, botany, zoology, anthropology, physics, chemistry, sociology, mathematics, mechanics, etc. On every one of these subjects there is great diversity, which makes them very complex. Yet with all this diversity and this nature-pervading unity, there is wonderful harmony, which again shows itself in the most remarkable complexity on all sides. We might instance the human face. While there is general unity in the human facial formation, there are not two human faces, not even those of the most perfect twins, that are exactly alike. Yet in this unity and diversity there is general harmony due to the great complexity in eye, nose, mouth, cheeks, jaws, forehead and skin.
Above we pointed out the complexity of matter considered from the standpoint of the 92 chemical elements in the composition of our earth. This brings up the subject of the molecule as consisting of atoms, of atoms as consisting of electrons [first discovered and announced in 1874!], and of electrons as consisting of protons and neutrons. The molecule is fundamental to
the science of chemistry and physics. A molecule is the smallest part of a substance that can exist separately and will retain its composition and properties, e.g., common salt is chloride of sodium, and water is oxide of hydrogen. Salt consists of exactly similar molecules of chloride of sodium, and water consists of exactly similar molecules of oxide of hydrogen. If a grain of salt were reduced to the smallest possible part that still retains chloride of sodium, and if a drop of water were reduced to the smallest possible part that still retains oxide of hydrogen, the resultant part of salt would be a molecule of salt and the resultant part of water would be a molecule of water. Thus all the chemical properties of salt or of water are inherent in a single molecule of salt or water. And a molecule is the smallest unit of a substance of which such a fact is true. It is possible by chemical or electric agencies to separate such a molecule of salt or water into its components, and thus to reduce the molecule of salt into a particle of sodium and a particle of chlorine, and to reduce the molecule of water into its constituents: hydrogen and oxygen. But in such a case we would no more have salt or water. We would have an atom of sodium and an atom of chlorine; and two atoms of hydrogen and one atom of oxygen. This latter operation illustrates the difference between the molecule and the atom. The former consists of two or more atoms. Again, the atom is made up of electrons. Some atoms consist of two electrons, others of more, dependent on the nature of the substance. In turn every electron consists of a positive and a negative principle, the former being protons and the latter being neutrons. The latter glide among and between the former as water glides among and between the parts of a porous substance. These facts on the constitution of all matter, bringing to our knowledge the peculiar nature of molecules, atoms, electrons, protons and neutrons, certainly illustrate the marvelous complexity of matter in its constitution.
And in all of the elements found in the earth the same constitution is found, i.e., molecules, atoms and electrons. It is the different combinations of these that make earth's elements differ from one another, which again, is a matter of great complexity. This matter becomes all the more complex when we consider the complexity illustrated in the thousands of compounds made by various combinations of earth's chemical elements. Thus matter as such in its raw and compound states presents the idea of complexity as an attribute of God's creative works.
This idea of complexity is greatly magnified when we pass from the world of inorganic matter to that of organic matter. This can be seen in the world of vegetation. Whether the first tree grew from a created seed, or whether it was first created and then produced the first tree seeds, we do not know; but in either case the attribute of complexity is present. So complex is the structure of any seed, and still more so its combination with the germinating life-principle, that human ingenuity has never succeeded in making one; and we are warranted in believing that it likely never will. Yet all vegetation harks back to its producing seed or its equivalent. Note the marvelous complexity involved in the idea of every seed bearing after its kind and after no other, the phenomenon of grafting being no exception to this; for in grafting the grafted twig abides as the producer of the fruit and the involved seed. It is from such complexity that we have the great variety of vegetables, plants and trees, each producing after its kind. How great is the resultant complexity in both flower and fruit! In trees we need only particularize roots, trunk, bark, branches and leaves, and immediately an almost infinite variety of complex matters come to mind. How complex, e.g., are the rings in the trunk of a tree, each separate and distinct, each united to its neighbor and one added each year! Then multiply this complexity with as many
trees as there are in each species of trees and then compound these by the number of species of trees, and complexity is produced by geometrical progression. And all this complexity comes from the variety of seeds, each producing trees and fruits after its kind. Look at the complexity of plant life. It has all the complexity of tree phenomena plus a great deal more by virtue of the greater variety of plant than tree life. Every flower that lifts its lovely face to receive the kisses of the life-prolonging sunbeams presents a series of complexity that is marvelous indeed. Note the texture, the hues, the forms and the fragrance of but one kind of these flowers as they grow together, each separate and distinct from one another; then witness their blending in most beautiful harmony of form, color, texture and fragrance, in the one kind of flower, and here again is an almost infinite complexity. Then heap together all flowers of but one species and of all species and finally all flowers of all species, and the resultant complexity is overpowering to our minds and hearts. Then glance a moment at the vegetable and fruit world. What variety of form, texture and taste is here to be found, and how greatly the idea of their complexity is borne in upon our minds as we contemplate these! What variety in form, color and texture the world of leaves brings to our attention, all of which have a superhuman complexity stamped upon them. Complexity is, therefore, an attribute of the plant, tree and vegetable worlds.
Passing on to a higher plane, that of animal life, we are confronted by more complex things. In every sphere of the animal creation complexity confronts us. How unsearchably vast, varied and multiformed is the fish world! From the tiniest denizen of the great deep to the giant whale, in every form, in every kind, in every genus, we find complexity on a mighty scale. How complex are the things that go to make up the generation of each kind of fish life! Complexity is
stamped upon the factors active in their swimming and in their exercising of the functions and process of growth. Their nerve, blood and other vital functions are indeed complex. These same principles find exemplification in insect life. No one yet has been able to solve the complexity inherent in the many problems seen in insect life. Reptilian life presents some even greater complexities; for reptiles present the same general problems of complexity as do the fish and insect world, plus a number of others—cold blood and, still more remarkable, the poisons of the poisonous reptiles. That their poisons will poison themselves if they infect any other part of their bodies than the sacs and fangs, which are their natural habitat, involves another complex problem. Locomotion as exemplified in the serpent is an exceedingly complex thing. Beast life, both domestic and wild, is replete with the attribute of complexity: from the generation to the death process and all lying between vary only in degree as to complexity. But complexity as seen in man, the highest of all earthly beings, is of a still higher order. Look at the vital processes, breathing, pulsation of the heart, vitalizing of the blood, the blood itself, the lung processes, the digestive and eliminative processes by kidneys, bowels and sweat pores, the chemical processes exemplified in liver, bile, the pancreatic function on the blood, the varied glandular processes, the generative processes, the system of arteries, veins and capillaries and the system of nerves, not to mention many others, constitute a series of facts, processes and results that are complicated in almost the highest degree.
In the realm of man's intellectual, moral and religious nature, there is complexity of the highest order found on earth. For the brain, instinct with life, to be able to remember, to imagine, to inspect, to perceive and to reason, brings to our attention a series of complexities that human wisdom cannot unravel, though it
can perceive the facts themselves. For other faculties of the brain instinct with life to be able to exercise the moral and unmoral sentiments, is still more complicated; for to love or to hate, to be generous or to be covetous, to be humble or to be proud, to be reticent or to be vain, to be at rest or to be at unrest, to seek to retain or give up life, to be longsuffering or angry, to be aggressive or forbearing, to be chaste or impure, to be conjugal or unconjugal, to be parental or unparental, to be filial or unfilial, to be a home, country and friend lover or hater—all these things operated through our brains are matters of very great complexity. Perhaps the most complex of all man's operations is the exercise of his religious sentiments as effected by the peculiar constitution of his vitalized brain. Here we see faith and unbelief exercised. Here hope, discouragement, despondency and despair find their sphere of play. Here self-control and irresoluteness hold sway. Here patience—perseverance— and non-continuity find their field of action. Here love or hatred for God reigns. Here brotherly love or hate holds sway. And here disinterested love or selfishness reigns. The difference between our physical functions on the one hand and our mental, moral and religious functions on the other, is not this: that one acts through physical organs and the other through spirit organs; for man has no spirit being within himself. The difference is due to a difference of organic structure and combination making for different functions and powers. And this very fact presents to us a series of conditions and facts whose complexity is exceedingly great, so great that, apart from the existence of the facts themselves and the functions, man is unable to unravel the complexity of his physical, mental, moral and religious nature. So far we have spoken of man in general. The problem becomes all the more complex When we proceed from the general to the individual man. Here the complexities are all the more
dense; and men's varied physical, mental, moral and religious characters only add to the complexity of the situation. Thus complexity is worked into the nature and condition of man.
The matter becomes all the more complex when we pass from a consideration of the human plane of life to the spirit plane of life. Bodies that consist of one or more of the spirit substances are decidedly more complex than bodies that consist of many of the earthly substances, like the human body. As yet we are unable to comprehend bodies made out of life-principle (those that are Divine) or bodies made of two or more other spirit substances, like light, heat, ether, fire, magnetic rays, radio-activity, etc., combined with life-principle. We do not know their shape nor their members. We know from their incorruptibility that they have no wasting tissues, hence need no food nor sleep. That they do have shape and members is evident from their having bodies. That they can move as quickly as thought for immense distances, many billions times more rapidly than light, is evident from many facts, e.g., Christ in a small fractional part of nine days from this earth reached Alcyone, which is 466 light years away, i.e., 2,796,000,000,000,000 miles from the earth; for before Pentecost and after reaching heaven there was a triumphant celebration of His return; thereupon He was inaugurated into His office; then He imputed His merit on behalf of the Church and sent the Holy Spirit from heaven to earth, to reach the disciples at Pentecost. Perhaps He arrived from the earth at Alcyone in the next instant after the cloud hid Him from His disciples' eyes, as they stood watching Him ascend from Olivet. We have other illustrations of angels speeding from heaven—Alcyone—to earth apparently in the twinkling of an eye. This, as well as the nature and qualities of their bodies, is very complex. And what shall we say of their mental, moral and religious
powers and processes? These are in their complexity far beyond our comprehension. Thus as we have briefly surveyed the creation of God, we find it very complex, even as before we found it a unity, immense, beautiful, sublime, orderly and wondrous. And from such contemplations we arise in heart and mind to Him who is the Author of Creation and find Him complex indeed, far more so than the complex creation that He has brought into existence. And lost in the thought of the inscrutinability of much that is in Him, and drawn on by the scrutinability of what He in creation and in the Bible reveals of Himself to us, we worship, praise and adore the God and Creator of heaven and earth, whose unity, immensity, beauty, sublimity, orderliness, wondrousness and complexity raise our hearts and minds into a partial vision of God in His unity, immensity (of mind and heart), beauty, sublimity, orderliness, wondrousness and complexity, and consequently make them overflow with praise, adoration and worship. And as we herewith draw to a close our discussion of the attributes of God's creative works, we do so with souls filled with devout and godly emotions. O come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker!—Ps. 95: 6.
It may indeed be phantasy when I
Essay to draw from all created things
Deep, heartfelt, inward joy that closely clings;
And trace in leaves and flowers that round me lie
Lessons of love and earnest piety.
So let it be; and if the wide world rings
In mock of this belief, to me it brings
Not fear, nor grief, nor vain perplexity.
So will I build my altar in the fields,
And the blue sky my fretted dome shall be,
And the sweet fragrance that the wild flower yields
Shall be the incense I will yield to Thee,
Thee, only God! and Thou shalt not despise
Even me, the priest of this poor sacrifice.