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ture authorities for regarding Christ Jesus as that great and glorious being by. whom God created the worlds; for God created all things by Jesus Christ; and without him was not any thing made that was made. Now, this in itself seems to me the completest proof of his pre-existent dignity and glory: and how such a function should be consistent with the belief of his mere humanity, and especially with the belief that he is not yet two thousand years in being, must be left to be shown by those who can entertain such belief. With me such ideas have no place.
But though there be, to my mind, and I hope to yours, satisfactory evidence of the divinity of Christ, resulting from a contemplation of his high office as employed in the creation of the world ; yet this is not the subject on which I mean at present particularly to insist. There is another office which the Son of God sustains, and in which we are all much more nearly and deeply interested, from which the strongest tęstimonies to the superior dignity and glory of his nature may be easily and clearly deduced :-I mean his gracious and most merciful office of Mediator between an offended God and a fallen world. In the fulfilment of this blessed office, there are several distinct and most important functions which the holy scriptures plainly represent him as performing; and which, as it ap
pears to my mind, could in no wise have been performed by mortal man-indeed, by any but a being far exalted above men and angels in the glory of his nature.
The high functions to which I refer, as included in the mediation of Christ, and as furnishing strong testimony to the divinity of his nature, are those which we find exhibited in scripture under the several designations of Saviour and Redeemer of sinners-advocate and intercessor at the right hand of God anointed King and head of the church -and ordained Judge of the quick and the dead. The very mention of any one of these interesting offices completely shuts out from my mind the notion of his simple humanity; and, independent of the consideration of his pre-existent excellence, invests him, in my apprehension, with a degree of perfection, of dignity, and of glory, that I cannot but look up to as Divine. ... Before entering, however, on the consideration of these several functions of our exalted Mediator, it will be proper to contemplate, as distinctly as we can, by the light of divine revelation, the distressed and melancholy condition of humanity, which appears to have produced the necessity for that high mediation which the gospel discloses.
We all believe, on the best authority, that 6. God made man in his own image,” which
image, the Scriptures inform us, consisted in the possession of “ knowledge, righteousness, and true holiness :”—but we all believe, on the same authority, that man did not long retain this blessed impress, in its original purity and plainness. Almost in the first page of his eventful history we read of an occurrence, the calamitous consequences of which are still before our eyes, and will, no doubt, continue deeply to affect our race, so long as this world lasts. Man, an accountable, and then a perfect creature in his kind, early violated a plain and positive command of his Maker; and, by that one act of wilful disobedience, entailed a dire calamity on himself and his posterity, to the end of time.
What the precise amount of that calamity, as it affects the entire race, we may not be able to comprehend in all its circumstances ;---especially as the scripture information has not been very particular, very copious, or explicit, on the subject. I doubt not it has been overrated by some, underrated by others. But I think it is generally admitted among Christians—at least whether admitted or not, I think it is taught in the scriptures with sufficient clearness-that, by the fall, man defaced the image, and forfeited the favour of God; that, by the fall, he lost his innocence, and with it the hope of immortality; and that, by the fall, he subjected himself and his race, throughout all generations, to a de
plorable state of spiritual degradation, misery, and death.
Although the scriptures have not afforded that minute and circumstantial information on this subject, which we, in our vain and foolish curiosity, might wish for; neither have they left us wholly in the dark about it. We learn from the Old Testament, that the human family were, from this cause, immedi. ately dismissed from their place and condition of primitive bliss--that they and theirs were thenceforward subjected to toil, and pain, and -sickness, and death-that they were sent forth as wretched pilgrims, upon a wide world of want, and sin, and sorrow ; but not without some hope, however obscurely communicated, of a gracious interposition, that would at length rescue them Ifrom the spiritual thraldom in which they were involved.
And in close correspondence therewith, we learn, from the New Testament, that " in Adam all die;"—that the sentence of death pronounced upon him, “dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return,” has literally passed upon us all. For we read there that 6 by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:"—that “ death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam's transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come. 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, by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many. 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. 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. 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 to justification of life. That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life, by Jesus Christ our Lord.”
Here, then, we get at the root of the evil : here we learn the original universal malady of human nature :--and here also (thanks be to God, through Christ,) we discover the cure.
I do not mean to teach you, for I do not think these passages teach, that the descendants of Adam are subjected to any punishment, in the strict sense of that term, for the sin of their progenitor: much less that they should be thereby exposed to the pains of hell for ever :—for the scriptures do not teach a doctrine so obviously at