Revelation v. Hypothesis
George Taylor Lee


1. Lee struck out the first page of the essay and rewrote it as presented in the text. The original title read, “Revelation vs Theories An Essay,” and the revised title and struck-out introductory paragraphs read:

Revelation vs Hypothesis
An Essay

Who is God, that I may believe in him? What am I? What must I believe? What is it in man that goes beyond the physical? What is it in man that refuses to be satisfied though he should gain the whole physical world? If man be the evolution of a protoplasm, forming the basis of his physical life, how is he other than physical? Is he not a mere animal? If not, why not?

The putting of these questions may be said, by some, to be arrogance, bordering on blasphemy, and the discussion of such questions, pro and con, may have in them elements of danger; but I do not believe that God forbids us to learn all that we can of Him by His revelations and His works through the spirit, God’s breath of immortal life, which He has given us. Man has paid for ages and is paying daily the price of knowledge of good and evil; and his creditor, his creator, tenders to him freely the means of making the pains and death of the body the gateway into a home of eternal life and joy. If we go in the right spirit, we need fear nothing because we seek ⟨to⟩ know the things that be of God; but we condemn ourselves as fools, when we question infinity. The Lord God requires that we learn wisdom, but it is that wisdom, which comes from Him and which leads us to seek the kingdom of God and His righteousness, with the assurance that such wisdom will lead us into all blessedness.

2. At this point, Lee struck out this sentence: “Theory, based on hypotheses may, or might, answer these questions, to an extent at least, just as revelation does, but theory and revelation may be diametrically opposed in other respects, so my proposition is:”

3. At this point in the manuscript, Lee struck out this sentence: “There does not seem to be any doubt in the minds of some that evolution proves that the Bible story of creation is false.”

4. This satire on Charles Darwin’s Descent of Man is the first verse of a parody on “The Leather Bottèl,” which appeared in the May 1871 issue of Blackwood’s Edinburgh Magazine (vol. 109, pp. 631–33). The original song dates back to at least the reign of Charles II and was discussed in William Chappell’s “Popular Music of the Olden Time” (2 vols.; 1855–1859).