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unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it; cursed is the ground for thy sake ; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee, and thou shalt eat the herb of the field : in the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till' thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return".

Let us contemplate the nature of this penalty, and • the change which the apostacy of our first parents made in their condition: “ In the day thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die.” This sentence involved three kinds of death..

First, temporal death was intended. They were immortal at their creation. And had they held fast their innocence, they would most probably have been translated to heaven, without experiencing the agonies of dissolution. But now they became mortal, and obnoxious to bodily death; the seeds of which were sown within them, on the very day they sinned. It is true they lived several hundred years after the sentence had been pronounced against then; for this reason, perhaps, because they were the appointed progenitors of the human race : yet they did not escape the pains of that natural death, to which their rebellion had subjected them. Their bodies, which before were always healthy, now underwent a material change: besides being exposed to various diseases and numerous evils, to shame, pain, and want, they were, by the Fall, despoiled of their original beauty and glory.

Secondly, spiritual death was incurred. The Divine image stamped on their minds was now totally

Gen. iii. 16-20.

lih ib. v. 5.

lost. That heart, which was once the seat of holy affections, was now defiled with impure desires, and became “the habitation of every unclean spirit.” Before the Fall, the passions and appetites were kept in due subjection ; but now they became disorderly, sought forbidden gratifications, and were made the springs of the greatest mischief to mankind.

Once righteousness, peace, contentment, and confidence in God, lodged in the soul; but now guilt, distrust, aların, dissatisfaction, and dreadful forebodings of deserved wrath, usurped their place. In the state of innocence, it afforded our first parents the most delightful satisfaction to consult and to do the will of God: now, having lost both the will and the power to serve him, they fled from his presence with terror'. Once they enjoyed communion with God, and sought his glory; but now, having forsaken him, and bearing the image of Satan, they acted in unison with him, and revolted more and more against the King of heaven.

Thirdly, the sentence included eternal death. Everlasting separation from God, the loss of his kingdom of glory, and the endurance of unceasing wrath, made up the full measure of those sufferings, to which Adam and Eve were doomed: and had not the sentence been accompanied with some intimations of mercy, through a promised Saviour', they would, perhaps, have fallen victims to despair.

Thus they lost that moral excellence which adorned them in the primitive state, and became “earthly, sensual, and devilishk.” How great a change was thus wrought in Adam's condition! He, who was once Lord of the creation, was driven out of Paradise in disgrace kk. Before, he was the Son of God, his

Gen. iii.8-11. "ib.ii.15. "Ja. ii. 15. Gen. iii. 22-24.

peculiar favourite, on whom he smiled with complacency; but now he became the Child of the Devil, and was cast out of God's sight, as an object of his sore displeasure. He, who was once the legal heir of the celestial inheritance, was now suddenly deprived of all his privileges, and exposed to everlasting wrath.

4. Who can help lamenting this mournful catastrophe, and saying, “How art thou fallen from heaven, O son of the morning!" “How is the gold become dim! how is the most fine gold changed ! The precious sons of Zion, comparable to fine gold, how are they esteemed as earthen pitchers, the work of the hands of the potter'!"

Had this disaster affected none but our first parents, even then it might justly have excited the most sincere regret. But the fact is, all of us are deeply involved, therein. Adam, being appointed the great representative of mankind, when he fell from God the whole human race was implicated in his sin ; for the covenant which he engaged to obey was made not merely with him, but with all his posterity, who were virtually in his loins when he

apo- statized from God: so that his offence became theirs by imputation; and they shared in the penalty attached to it, just in the same way as they would have been benefited by his obedience, had he firmly adhered to the Lord. Scripture repeatedly affirms the doctrine of the imputation of Adam's transgression to all his descendants, to the ļatest generations: “In Adam all diem.”

By one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.'

Experience and matter of fact attest the truth of this declaration. Every child of Adam, since the day he

Lam. iv. 1, 2. m 1 Cor. xv. 22. n Rom, v. 12.

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fell, has been conceived and born in sin "", is prone to evil, a subject of wrath, and exposed in a variety of forms to sorrow and death. Every person, as soon as he is capable of actual transgression, discovers a propensity to comınit sin, and thus imitates the apostacy of Adam, in his own personal

' iniquity. 5. Some objéct, that the punishment greatly exceeded the offence; and others complain of the injustice of making Adam our federal head, and óf vesting in him both our happiness and misery. As to the first objection, it may be replied, that whoever coolly reflects on the aggravating circumstances which marked the character of the first transgression, will see in it a crime of the foulest die, an offence of an almost unpardonable nature; containing in itself the seeds of all the wickedness which the human species have since conceived and perpetrated. It was a daring contempt of the Divine authority, a forgetfulness of God, and a base requital for the numerous favours which he had bestowed upon them: it was a foul act of treason against their lawful Sovereign, whom they deserted, to put themselves under the sceptre of the Prince of Darkness; and it argued jealousy, distrust, unbelief, and unjust thoughts of God, as if he wished to deprive them of something essential to their welfare.

Jehovah must have seen something so awfully criminalin this offence, as to determine him to punish it with a measure of severity commensurate to its great demerit. And, until we can ascertain the exact degree of guilt there was in that sin, it behoves us to acquiesce in the judgment which God has passed upon it. 6. With regard to the second objection, it may be urged, that it does not become us to entertain the least doubt whether God acted agreeably to the mosti perfect justice in constituting Adam our representative. Nor can we, without great impiety, question his absolute right to do what he will with his creatures. His infinite wisdom and goodness preserve him from any suspicion of injustice in such a constitution. And they who are in the habit of reflecting against the equity of the appointment, will do well te consider with whom they are contending. As often as they murmur against the Lord, on this account, his word thus rebukes their presumption: “O man! who art thou that repliest against Godo?” “Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right??"

nn Ps. li. 5. Eph. ii. 3.

Besides, possessed of sufficient ability to stand to the covenant, Adam was, humanly speaking, more likely to hold fast his integrity, than to lose it. Who then was so fit to covenant for us, or to promote our spiritual interest, as He? But if He, comparatively perfect as he was, could not overcome temptation, can any one of us, his degenerate sons, flatter himself that he should have defeated more successfully the crafty assaults of the Devil ? Our proneness to sin from our infancy, our constant aberrations from the path of known duty, and the ease with which Satan too frequently carries us captive at his will, confute such a notion; and remind us, that we are “set in the midst of so many and great dangers, that by reason of the frailty of our nature we cannot always stand upright.”

7. Furthermore, if Adam had performed the conditions of the covenant, he would have been confirmed in happiness, with his whole race, through all eternity. Now, if such had been the issue of his proba• Rom. ix. 20-24.

P Gen. xviii. 25.

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