Seite 11 - Christian Temperance and Bible Hygiene (1890)

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Chapter 1—Christian Temperance General
Man came from the hand of his Creator perfect in organization and
beautiful in form. The fact that he has for six thousand years withstood
the ever-increasing weight of disease and crime is conclusive proof
of the power of endurance with which he was first endowed. And
although the antediluvians generally gave themselves up to sin without
restraint, it was more than two thousand years before the violation
of natural law was sensibly felt. Had Adam originally possessed no
greater physical power than men now have, the race would ere this
have become extinct.
Through the successive generations since the fall, the tendency
has been continually downward. Disease has been transmitted from
parents to children, generation after generation. Even infants in the
cradle suffer from afflictions caused by the sins of their parents.
Moses, the first historian, gives quite a definite account of social
and individual life in the early days of the world’s history, but we find
no record that an infant was born blind, deaf, crippled, or imbecile.
Not an instance is recorded of a natural death in infancy, childhood,
or early manhood. Obituary notices in the book of Genesis run thus:
“And all the days that Adam lived were nine hundred and thirty years;
and he died.” “And all the days of Seth were nine hundred and twelve
years; and he died.” Concerning others the record states, “He died in a
good old age, an old man, and full of years.” It was so rare for a son to
die before his father, that such an occurrence was considered worthy
of record: “Haran died before his father Terah.” [
Genesis 5:5, 8
.] The patriarchs from Adam to Noah, with few exceptions, lived
nearly a thousand years. Since then the average length of life has been
At the time of Christ’s first advent, the race had already so degen-
erated that not only the old, but the middle-aged and the young, were
brought from every city to the Saviour, to be healed of their diseases.
Many labored under a weight of misery inexpressible.