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bulk of mankind. Cast a glance at the sports of children, from five to fifteen years of age. What toys and fooleries are these? Would a race of wise and holy beings, waste so many years of early life in such wretched trifles? And as for our manly years, what are the greatest part of the delights of men, but silly and irrational, if not grossly sinful? What are the pleasures even of the rich and great, to relieve them under the common sorrows of life? If they be not luxury and intemperance, are they not furniture and equipage, finery of dress and gay appearances? To shine in silks of various dye, and blaze in the splendour of gold and jewels? Now would wise and holy creatures have made this the matter of their joy and pleasurc, My coat is gayer than your's, and I have more glittering things about me than you have! (p. 80, 81.)
"Others call for cards or dice, to divert their trouble and pass away their time. How inexpressibly trifling are these sports, if mere diversion be sought therein? But if the design be gain, how is the game mingled with uneasy fears, with the working of various passions? Which in case of disappointment and loss, often break out into wrath and fury!
"Again. What multitudes drench themselves in gross sensualities, as their chief delight? They make a god of their belly, till they overload nature, and make haste to disease and death. They drown their cares and their senses together; or they bury them in sensual impurities. (p. 82.)
"Others release themselves from the troubles of life, by gadding abroad and mixing with impertinent company. Some delight in wanton jests, in foolish merriment, in mean and trifling conversation; a little above the chattering of monkies in a wood, or the chirping of crickets upon a hearth. Nay, perhaps it is their diversion, to rail at their neighbours, to murder the reputation of the absent. This is their mirth and recreation; these their reliefs against the common miseries of human life! (p. 83.)
"But would a race of innocent beings flee to such mean
and foolish, or criminal refuges from pain as these? Would they pursue such vain and vile delights? Would they become rivals to the beasts of the field? Or sport themselves as devils do, in accusing their fellow-creatures? Surely if we survey the very pleasures, as well as the sorrows, of the bulk of mankind, we may learn from thence, that we are by no means such creatures as we were originally created.
"I need add but one more proof of the general ruin of human nature. We are all posting to the grave. Every one of us are succeeding our neighbours, into some un'known, invisible world. And we all profess to believe this. Yet how exceedingly few are solicitous about this great and awful futurity? Though we are exposed to so many sins and miseries in this life, and are hastening visibly and hourly to the end of it, yet how few are there that make any careful preparation for a better state than this! What multitudes are daily running down into darkness, speeding to an endless duration in an unknown country, without any earnest inquiries about the manner of existence there! They walk over the busy stage of life, they toil and labour, or play and trifle awhile here, and then plunge into a strange, unseen world, where they will meet with a just and holy God, whose wisdom will assign them a place and portion suited to their own character. Now were men indeed wise and holy, could they remain so ignorant and thoughtless of that state, into which they are all hastening? Or could a gracious God create a race of beings, in such a stupid insensibility of their eternal interests, so unsuited to the felicities of an immortal spirit, and so negligent of all preparations for them? (p. 85.)
"Upon this whole survey, reason must join in this mournful confession, that there must be some spreading poison which has tainted our nature, made us so sinful and miserable, so thoughtless of the future, and unprepared for it. There must have been some general revolt of mankind from their Creator, whereby they have ruined their innocence and peace, and provoked the anger of their Maker, whereby they become exposed to such wretched circum
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u visible in ten thousand recanations of divine grace, Go them; though very few we and there one attends Toposals of peace. His though his body goes soul is happy with God: despising all the offers of The madness! (p. 89, 90.)
that leads some men to they cannot give a satisculties that attend it? philosophers believed it, their daily survey of manat a loss, how to account put assign a sufficient and Je few how this spreading ake place so univerto explain how all must we therefore deny heel daily? (p. 91.)
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vegetation? Do men
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cannot find out the way of its operation? Are we not sure that food nourishes our bodies, and medicines relieve our pains? Yet we know not all the ferments and motions of those atoms, by which we are relieved and nourished. Why then should we deny that degeneracy of our nature, which admits of so full and various proof, though we are not able to account for every circumstance relating to it, or to solve every difficulty that may attend it?" (p. 92.)
How came Vice and Misery to overspread Mankind in all Nations, and in all Ages? (p. 94.)
"HEATHEN Philosophers could never answer this: but Christians may, from the Oracles of God.
These inform us, that the first man was a common head and representative of all mankind: and that he by sinning against his Maker, lost his holiness and happiness: and exposed himself and his posterity (whom he naturally produced and whom he legally represented) to the displeasure of his Maker, and so spread sin and misery through his whole offspring. (p. 102.)
So St. Paul, As by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin, even so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned,' (Rom. v. 12.) All are esteemed in some sort guilty before God, though they did not sin after the similitude of Adam's transgression.' They did not commit actual personal sin against a known law as Adam did.
"This may more fully appear from the following particulars.
"1. It is plainly taught us in Scripture, that God at first created one man and woman called Adam and Eve; and from them is derived the whole race of mankind: 'God hath made of one blood,' as the apostle observes, all nations of men, to dwell on all the face of the earth.'
2. "God created man at first in a holy and happy state, in his own likeness, and in his favour. (p. 160.) And God said, let us make man in our own image, after our own likeness,' (Gen. i. 26.) And that none of the brute creation might molest him, but all of them be for his service, he said, 'Let them have dominion over the fish, and the fowl, and the cattle.'—' So God created man in his own image.' And what this image consisted in, beside his spiritual and immortal nature, and his dominion over other creatures, we are told by St. Paul, where he speaks of the new man, which,' says he,' after God,' that is, after the likeness of God, 'is created in righteousness and true holipess,' (Eph. iv, 24.) So Solomon assures us, God made man upright.' And Moses says, when God had finished all his creation, God saw every thing that he had made, and behold it was very good.' It was all according to his idea and his will, and well-pleasing in his sight. Man, the last of his creatures, as well as all the rest, was very good, was holy and happy.
3. "God originally appointed that Adam when innocent should produce an offspring in his own holy image: and on the other hand that if he sinned, he should propagate his kind in his own sinful image. The former is allowed. The latter may be gathered from Gen. v. 1-5, In the day that God created man, in the likeness of God made he him :'—' And Adam lived a hundred and thirty years' after his loss of the image of God, and begat a son in his own likeness, after his image,' that is, his own sinful and mortal image.
"It is not to be supposed, that Moses in this brief history of the first generations of men, should so particularly repeat the image and likeness of God in which Adam was created, unless he had designed to set the comparison in a fair light, between Adam's begetting a son in his own sinful and mortal image, whereas he himself was created in God's holy and immortal image. (p. 162.)
4. "God was pleased to put the man whom he had made upon a trial of his obedience for a season. He placed him