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wicked nature, and must obey the dictates of his depraved propensities.

All inanimate objects are made to obey certain fixed laws, which laws run parallel with their existence, and they can obey no other; but intellectual moral agents are capable of yielding obedience to laws running counter to each other; that is, they can obey either; the law of sin, or the law of righteousness.

In several passages of Scripture, we are required to choose. Joshua, xiv. 15. “ And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve;" consequently we can serve God or mammon, sin or holiness, Jesus Christ or the devil; and if we are capable of choosing and refusing, and are depraved, our depravity is the result of choice, and not from any necessity of our nature; otherwise, under this necessity of our nature, we could not predicate praise or blame.

Again, we believe that God is a wise, just and good being; and we conceive it would be wrong in him to make a creature with powers and faculties tending only to evil, and at the same time to require of him obedience to a law that was contrary to his nature, under a penalty, in case of disobedience, of everlasting misery and despair.

In such a case, where is his wisdom, justice, and goodness?

It would be wrong to require dumb brutes to speak with an audible voice in the language of man; because they are not qualified to obey the requisition.

On the same principle, it would be wrong to require man to perform good actions, while, at the same time, all the capacities of his nature are only formed to commit iniquity.

Therefore our depravity must be voluntary.

I shall notice, in the next place, that system which accounts for the depravity of our race, on the supposition that the children of Adam become corrupted by an arbitrary act of God; that is, the sin of Adam, in his partaking of the forbidden fruit, is imputed to them, or set over to their account, so that they are actually guilty before God, on account of the sin of their

first parents.

Several texts of Scripture are cited by the advocates of im

puted depravity, which they esteem sufficient to prove this doctrine to be correct.

I shall refer to these texts, and endeavour to show that they do not really countenance this view of the subject.

I shall proceed to read Romans, 5th chapter, from the 12th verse to the end ; but before I read it, I wish to remark that the words by and through, so frequently used in these verses, are not equivalent to the word for, but as indicating the channel through which death or depravity has come upon the human family: not for Adam's sin, as the procuring cause, but by Adam's sin as the occasion of God's appointing the dispensation or constitution of things under which the race became depraved.

Romans, v. 12. Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.

13. [For until the law, sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed where there is no law.

14. Nevertheless, death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam's transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come.

15. But not as the offence, so also is the free gift, for if through the offence of one, many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many.

16. And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift; for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification.

17. For if by one man's offence death reigned by one ; much more they which receive abundance of grace, and of the gift of righteousness, shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.]

18. Therefore, as by the offence of one, judgment came upon all men to condemnation, even so by the righteousness of one, the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.

19. For as by one man's disobedience, many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one, shall many be made righte20. Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound, but where sin abounded, grace did much more abound.

ous.

21. That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life, by Jesus Christ our Lord.

I would now inquire what kind of death the apostle is speak

ing of.

It cannot be temporal death, because the subject here discussed, is to show the benefits of justification through faith in Jesus Christ.

In the previous part of this chapter, the apostle had shown " that justification produced peace; that it produced joy in the prospect of future glory; that it sustains the Christian in afflictions; and that it leads them to rejoice in God himself." He then proceeds, in these verses, to show the bearing of the great mass of moral evil which had spread over the human family, and to prove that the benefits arising from the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, were greater than the evil arising from the depravity of man to the end of time. “His design is to exalt our views of the work of Christ, and the plan of justification through his death."

Again, it cannot be natural death, the death of the body, for this death is not the penalty of the law; man is never called to an account for dying this death; the sin of Adam was not the cause, but the occasion of the appointment of this death to the human family, therefore it did not come upon mankind as the penalty threatened to Adam in case that he should partake of the forbidden fruit.

It was said to him, “ In the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.This to Adam was temporal and eternal death; he violated the command of his Maker, and this twofold death was his just due on the same day that he transgressed; for in order to suffer eternal death, it was necessary that he should die a temporal death; but this penalty was not in ficted either on Adam or on his posterity-he died a spiritual death; but this was a necessary consequence of sin, and not a penalty, or a punishment.

The case is this, Adam and Eve, the first created pair, had knowingly and voluntarily violated the command of God, and thereby became liable on the same day that they sinned, to experience the dreadful penalty threatened in case of their disobedience; but God appears and converses with them in the garden, and instead of vengeance, he approaches them with feelings of compassion ; he had designs of mercy for them and their posterity; to this end the Son of God was to become incarnate, and as the serpent had been the instigator of their sin, the seed of the woman should bruise the serpent's head.Here then a Saviour was offered to them; they repented of their sin, believed in this Saviour, and were pardoned; and to testify their faith in the promised Messiah, animals were slain and offered in sacrifice to represent “ the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.And to manifest the benefit of justification through pardon, they were clothed with the skins of animals that were offered in sacrifice; and thus for the sake of the sacrifice of the Son of God, to be offered in the fulness of the time appointed, God could in justice forbear to execute the penalty they had so richly deserved; and therefore, they did not die that day, but God suffered Adam to continue his life nine hundred and thirty years.

Furthermore, in order that this remedial dispensation should be fully established in this world, it became necessary that Adam and his posterity should be placed under circumstances of trial; and accordingly such a constitution of things was adopted that would secure the great ends of God's favour to man.

Under this constitution of things, man was to obtain his sustenance by labour, the earth was to be a continual source of care, toil and anxiety, and should also produce thorns and this. tles; not that thorns and thistles were not created in the first six days, nor that the earth produced these more abundantly after the apostacy than before ; but that to mạn in all the concerns of life, the earth should occasion a multitude of trials, troubles, afflictions and disappointments : the woman also was to bear children under a multiplicity of sorrows, her desire to be unto her husband, and to be subject to his rule and authori. ty. And to complete this dispensation, it was necessary that Adam and all his posterity should die a temporal death.

This state of contrarieties, of good and evil, of right and wrong, of love and hatred, of joy and sorrow, of hope and fear, of peace and war, of prosperity and affliction, of praise and blame, of life and death, was necessary in order to place man as a free moral agent, under such a system of influences, that he might be operated upon in a moral point of view, and be renewed and sanctified through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, by the operation of the Spirit of God.

And when the purposes for which man was placed in this state of trial shall be accomplished, he must then be brought to judgment, and removed to another sphere of action, either in the world of blessedness, or the regions of everlasting despair, according to the character he has acquired under the offers of mercy in this world ; or according to his having believed and obeyed the gospel, or despised and rejected the only Redeemer: 2 Corinthians, v. 10. "For we must all appear before the judgment-seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.” And in order to this, it became necessary that man should die a temporal death ; and this position is corroborated by the Apostle, in Hebrews ix. 27. It is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment."

This death was not appointed as a penalty for sin, nor as a curse, but as a blessing; for if man did not die, he could not go to heaven ; the death of the body is the close of our probationary state, the termination of all our cares, trials, and sufferings in this life.

The time that each individual of the human family should be born, his parents, the place of his birth, the period of the world in which he should live, his death, and the resurrection from the grave, are all appointed; these things are not under his control, he cannot be blamed or brought into an account in regard to them ; they do not come under the cognisance of law, but depend entirely on the will of our Maker.

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