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trast, that some entire and awful change, as to man’s nature and moral character, had taken place, since God created him “
very good!” This most obvious conclusion is illustrated by the history of Cain, 1 and by the account given of the antediluvian world. “ The earth also was corrupt “ before God; and the earth was filled with vio“lence. And God looked on the earth, and behold “ it was corrupt ; for all flesh had corrupted his
way upon the earth.”2 Again, after the deluge, the saine language is used : “ the imagination of “man's heart is evil from his youth.”3 Now was this sad change the effect of Adam's fall, and of the fall of his posterity in him ? or can it be accounted for in some other way?
If the change, which we call ORIGINAL SIN, took place in Adam's nature immediately when he sinned, the whole, though not free from difficulties, accords to universal analogy; the offspring has the nature of the parent animal. “Who can bring a clean thing “out of an unclean Not one.” “What is man, “ that he should be clean and he that is born of “a woman, that he should be righteous.” 4 “hold I was shapen in iniquity, and in sin did my “ mother conceive me.” 5 “ We were by nature “ children of wrath even as others." 6 Thus, when Jeremiah predicts the birth of “the Seed of the “ woman,” (as his words most obviously mean, he says, “ The Lord hath created a new thing in the “ earth, a woman shall compass a man.” 7 “The * Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power “ of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore “ also that holy thing which shall be born of thee « shall be called the Son of God.” 1
1 Gen. iv. ? Gen. vi. 11, 12. 3 Gen. viii. 21. *Job xiv. 4. xv. 14. Ps. li. 5. Eph. ii. 3. ?Jer. xxxi. 22.
Universal history shews that man is, by nature, what the scripture has declared him to be: the human heart appears every where “ deceitful above “ all things and desperately wicked ;” and the human character, as manifested by human actions, nearly corresponds with the short account given of the antediluvian world. Where " the oracles of “ God” have been vouchsafed, a remnant appears of another character: but, after the example of those who“ by faith obtained a good report” in the word of God, they all acknowledge that “ by the
grace of God they are what they are;” that “ by “ nature they were children of wrath even as “others;" and that, after all, they are far from being what they ought to be, and long to be.
Again, the apostle exhorts his Christian brethren in this manner: “Be not conformed to this world; “ but be' ye transformed in the renewing of your « mind." 2
“Put off, concerning the former con“ versation, the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and be
renewed “ in the spirit of your mind; and put ye on the
new man, which after God is created in righ“ teousness and true holiness,” or holiness of the “ truth. Again, to the Colossians he says: “ Ye “ have put off the old man with his deeds; and “ have put on the new man, which is renewed in “ knowledge, after the image of him that created
Luke i. 35.
» Rom. xii. 2. 3 Εph. iv. 20-24: οσιότητα της αληθείας.
“ him." 1 Who can help marking the singular contrast between the old man and the new man? Who can deny that reference is had to “the first “ Adam and the second Adam?"2 And who can reasonably doubt that, the image of fallen Adam being “ put off,” and “ laid aside, Christians by “ putting on the new man,” becoming more and more like the Lord Jesus, are renewed to that image of God in “knowledge, righteousness, and true
holiness,” in which God at first created man? “ We all, with open face beholding as in a glass
the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same “ image, from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit “ of the Lord.” 3_Other notions concerning the state of the world, the change in man's nature or character, since God created him, and that image of God in which he made man, will come under our view, in prosecuting the subject. 4
* There are others who contend that the sin of "Adam introduced into his nature such a radical
impotence and depravity, that it is impossible for • his descendents to make any voluntary effort to
wards piety or virtue, or in any respect to correct and improve their moral and religious character.'5 The impossibility mentioned in this quotation, in the judgment of those who most strenuously maintain it, is principally a moral inability, which will be distinctly considered. It may, however, here be noted, that the scriptures apply the term cannot, or that Greek word which most exactly answers to it, in this sense, in very many places. 1
32 Cor. iii. 18.
! Col. iii. 9, 10. 21 Cor. xv. 45-49.
* Section on Exertions.
An effort must be voluntary: but if man be altogether unwilling to what is 'good in the sight of 'God,' he cannot make any voluntary effort after that which is good in this sense ; whatever he may do after virtue, or what is good before men.' This subject also will receive a distinct considera
· The true doctrine will be found to lie between these two extremes'-those of the Socinians and the Calvinists. The heart, the passions, the will,
and the understanding, and indeed all the facul'ties and powers of Adam, were greatly corrupted, ' perverted, and impaired, by his violation of the divine command ; and this sin of our first parent has caused every individual descended from him, 'to be born into the world an imperfect and depraved creature. But, though a propensity to evil and wickedness, universal in extent and powerful in its effects, was thus transmitted to mankind, yet all idea of distinction between right • and wrong was not utterly obliterated from the · human mind, or every good affection eradicated from the human heart. The general approbation
See Sections on Wickedness naturalized; on Free Will, &c.
Section on Exertions.
of virtue and detestation of vice, which have uni'versally prevailed, prove that the moral sense ' was not annihilated.'1
This quotation concedes very much ; though not all for which we contend. But, if this be the decided opinion of his Lordship, why did he afterwards adduce, from Clement Alexandrinus, from Origen, from Chrysostom, and others of the ancient fathers, quotations against the Calvinists, which virtually, nay expressly, deny these consequences of Adam's sin, on the heart and nature of his posterity? A few of these will be adduced on some of the subsequent topics : and I shall here only add, that quotation, made, in this manner and case, is nearly equivalent to adoption. But surely it is not necessary to have recourse to direct Pelagianism in refuting Calvinism, if Calvinism be indeed antiscriptural.
Did ever any body of men, or any individual, expressly and deliberately maintain, that all idea of distinction of right and wrong was utterly obliterated from the human mind by the fall of Adam? Nothing could effect this, except such a change as absolutely deprived man of his rational faculties, and rendered him an ideot or a brute. Fallen angels know what is right, yet hate it; and what is wrong, yet love it.
Good affections are not eradicated from the human heart, if natural affection to relatives, and humane and compassionate feelings towards fellow creatures, without any regard to the will and glory of God, be good affections : but, if holy love to
Ref. 2, 3.