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die. Nothing would reftrain them from it; even all his preaching, and all his miracles; but they would kill him. And it was not the ordinary kind of execution that would fatisfy them; but it must be the moft cruel, and moft ignominious they poffibly could invent. And they, in the time of it added to it, and aggravated it as much as ever they could, by mocking him, and fpitting on him, and fcourging him. This thows what the nature and tendency of man's enmity against God is; here it appeared in its true colours.
5. Natural men are greater enemies to God than they are to any other being whatfoever. Natural men may be very great enemies to their fellow creatures, but not fo great as they are to God. There is no other being that so much stands in finners way, in thofe things that they chiefly fet their hearts upon, as God. Men are wont to hate their enemies in proportion to two things, viz. their oppofition to what they look upon to be their intereft,—and their power and ability. One that is looked upon a great and powerful enemy, will be more hated than one that is weak and impotent. But none of their enemies are fo powerful as God.
Man's enmity to other enemies may be got over : time may wear it out, and they may be reconciled, and be friends. But natural men, without a mighty work of God to change their hearts, will never get over their enmity against God. They are greater enemies to God than they are to the devil. Yea, they treat the devil as their friend and mafter, and join in with him against God. "Ye are of your father the devil, and the lufts of your father ye will do: he was a murderer from "the beginning," John viii. 44.
ROMANS V. 10.
For if when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son.
Natural Men are God's Enemies.
In fpeaking to this Doctrine, it was propofed,
2. To how great a degree they are enemies.
4. To anfwer fome objections.
The two first things propofed have been attended to in the foregoing difcourfe. I now proceed,
III. To fhow why, or on what account they are enemies to God.
The general reafon is, That God is oppofite to them in the worship of their idols.
The apoftacy of man does fummarily confift in departing from the true God to idols; forfaking his Creator, and fetting up other things in his room.
When God at first created man, he was united to his Creator ; the God that made him was his God. The true God was the object of his highest refpe&t, and had the poffeffion of his heart. Love to God was the principle in his heart, that ruled over all other principles; and every thing in the foul was wholly in fubjection to it. But when man fell, he departed from the true God, and the union that was between his heart and his Creator was broken: he wholly loft the principle of love he had to God. And henceforward man clave to other gods. He gave that refpect to the creature, which is due to the Creator. When God ceafed to be the
the manner in which the ignorance of a new-born infant is fo. Though this does not arise from want of aculties, yet it arifes from want of neceffary opportunity to exert thefe faculties.
The blindnefs that is in the heart of man, which is fpoken of in the text and doctrine, is neither for want of faculties, nor opportunity to know, but from fome pofitive caufe. There is a pofitive principle in the heart, of a blinding and befotting nature, that hinders fuch exercifes of his faculties about the things of religion, as God has made them well capable of, and gives him abundant opportunity for. There is a principle which may be called, a pofitive principle of ignorance and blindness; a proneness or inclination in the heart of man to fuch fottifhnefs in these great things.
In order to make it appear, that fuch an extreme brutifh blindness, with respect to the things of religion, does naturally poffefs the hearts of men, I fhall,
1. Show how this is manifeft in thofe things that.. appear in men's open profeffion.
2. I fhall show, how it is manifeft in those things that are found by inward experience, and are visible in men's practice.
I. I would fhow, how it is manifeft that there is a fottifh and brutifh blindnefs in the hearts of men in the things of religion, by thofe things which appear in men's open profeffion.
1. It appears in the groffness of that ignorance and thofe delufions which have appeared among mankind. Man has faculties given him whereby he is well capable of arguing the being of the Creator, from the creatures; for the invifible things of God are very plainly and clearly to be feen by the things that are made; and the perfections of the Divine Being, his eternal power and godhead, are very manifeft the works of his hands. And yet grofsly abfurd notions concerning the Godhead have prevailed in the world. Instead of acknowledging and worshipping the true God, they have fallen off to the worthip of idols. Inftead of acknowledging the one only
object of his fupreme love and refpe&t, other things of courfe became the objects of it.
Man will neceffarily have fomething that he refpects as his God. If man does not give his higheft refpect to the God that made him, there will be fomething elfe that has the poffeffion of it. Men will either worship the true God, or fome idol: it is impoffible it should be otherwife; fomething will have the heart of man. And that which a man gives his heart to, may be called his god; and therefore, when man by the fall extinguifhed all love to the true God, he fet up the creature
in his room.
And fo man came to be at enmity against the true God. For having loft his efteem and love of the true God, and fet up other Gods in his room, and in oppofition to him; and God ftill demanding their worship, and oppofing them in their worship of thofe falfe gods; and man continuing ftill to worship idols, enmity neceffarily follows.
That which a man choofes for his god, he fets his heart mainly upon. And nothing will fo foon excite enmity as oppofition in that which is dearest. A mạn will be the greatest enemy to him who opposes him in what he chooses for his god: he will look on none as ftanding fo much in his way, as he that would deprive him of his god. "Ye have taken away my gods; and "what have I more ?" Judg. xviii, 24. A man in this refpect cannot ferve two mafters that ftand in competition for his fervice. And not only, if he ferves one, he cannot ferve the other, but if he cleaves to one, he will neceffarily hate the other. "No man can ferve "two masters: for either he will hate the one, and "love the other, or else he will hold to the one, and
defpife the other. Ye cannot ferve God and mam"mon," Matth. vi. 24. And this is the very reason
at men hate God. In this cafe it is, as when two kings fet up in one kingdom in oppofition one to the other; and they both challenge the fame throne, and are competitors for the fame crown; they that are loyal,