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和訳お願い致します。

It is refreshing to return to the often-echoed remark, that it could not have been the object of a Divine revelation to instruct mankind in physical science, man having had faculties bestowed upon him to enable him to acquire this knowledge by himself. This is in fact pretty generally admitted; but in the application of the doctrine, writers play at fast and loose with it according to circumstances. Thus an inspired writer may be permitted to allude to the phenomena of nature according to the vulgar view of such things, without impeachment of his better knowledge; but if he speaks of the same phenomena assertively, we are bound to suppose that things are as he represents them, however much our knowledge of nature may be disposed to recalcitrate. But if we find a difficulty in admitting that such misrepresentations can find a place in revelation, the difficulty lies in our having previously assumed what a Divine revelation ought to be. If God made use of imperfectly informed men to lay the foundations of that higher knowledge for which the human race was destined, is it wonderful that they should have committed themselves to assertions not in accordance with facts, although they may have believed them to be true? On what grounds has the popular notion of Divine revelation been built up? Is it not plain that the plan of Providence for the education of man is a progressive one, and as imperfect men have been used as the agents for teaching mankind, is it not to be expected that their teachings should be partial and, to some extent, erroneous? Admitted, as it is, that physical science is not what the Hebrew writers, for the most part, profess to convey, at any rate, that it is not on account of the communication of such knowledge that we attach any value to their writings, why should we hesitate to recognise their fallibility on this head?

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以下のとおりお答えします。(最後の段落は、構文がひどく複雑ですので、解読しきれていないかもしれませんが、誤解の節は悪しからずお許しください。) 何度も反復された発言に立ち返ると元気が戻るものです。すなわち、こうです。人間は、独力で物理学知識の獲得を可能にするための能力を己自身に授けていたのですから、その物理学を人類に教えることが神による託宣の目的だったはずはあり得ません。事実これは、かなり一般的に認められています。ただ、教義の適用においては、作家らは、状況に応じてそれを弄んでしまいます。 したがって霊感を受けた作家は、自然の現象について示唆する際、よりよい知識が彼にあってもそれによる非難などなしで、自然現象に対する世俗的見解に従って行う(語る)ことを許されるかもしれません。彼が同じ現象に固執するとすれば、(物事の)事態は彼の表明どおりと想定せざるを得ませんが、しかし私たちとしても、自然に関する知識から大いに反抗したい気分になるかもしれません。そのような誤った発表が発現し得ることを認める際に困難があるとすれば、(事前に)託宣とはどうあるべきかを想定しておいたことにそれ(困難の淵源)があるのです。 もしも、人類が(神によって)予定された高い知識の基礎を築くために、不完全にしか事情に通じていないような人々を神が利用するならば、彼らが真実と考えていたかもしれないにもかかわらずその事実に従わない主張に身を委ねてしまうことは、素晴らしいことでしょうか? 託宣についての一般的な概念は、どういう根拠の上に構築されてきたのでしょうか? 人間教育のための、神意の計画は進歩的なものであるということは明白ではないのでしょうか? また、不完全な人が人類を教えるための代理人として使用されたのであれば、彼らの教えは、部分的で、ある程度まで誤っているはずだと予期されて然るべきではないでしょうか? 物理学は、ヘブライ人作家が何とかして伝えようとしているものではないということや、私たちが何がしかの価値をヘブライ人作家の著述に付与するのはその知識の伝達の説明についてではないと、現にあるがままに認めるならば、私たちはなぜ、この項目に関して彼らの誤り易さを認識することに躊躇しなければならないのでしょうか? 以上、ご回答まで。

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