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Treasury of Scriptural Knowledge, by R.A. Torrey, [ca. 1880], at

Genesis Introduction


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The Book of Genesis is the most ancient record in the world; including the History of two grand and stupendous subjects, Creation and Providence; of each of which it presents a summary, but astonishingly minute and detailed accounts. From this Book, almost all the ancient philosophers, astronomers, chronologists, and historians have taken their respective data; and all the modern improvements and accurate discoveries in different arts and sciences, have only served to confirm the facts detailed by Moses, and to shew, that all the ancient writers on these subjects have approached, or receded from, truth and the phenomena of Nature, in exactly the same proportion as they have followed or receded from, the Mosaic history. The great fact of the deluge is fully confirmed by the fossilised remains in every quarter of the globe. Add to this, that general traditions of the deluge have been traced among the Egyptians, Chinese, Japanese, Hindoos, Burmans, ancient Goths and Druids, Mexicans, Peruvians, Brazilians, North American Indians, Greenlanders, Otaheiteans, Sandwich Islanders, and almost every nation under heaven; while the allegorical turgidity of these distorted traditions sufficiently distinguishes them from the unadorned simplicity of the Mosaic narrative. In fine, without this history the world would be in comparative darkness, not knowing whence it came, nor whither it goeth. In the first page, a child may learn more in an hour, than all the philosophers in the world learned without it in a thousand years. (The original publisher remembers these words addressed to him and other boys in the year 1780, by his excellent tutor, the later Rev. John Ryland, of Northampton.)

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