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passed upon a criminal, his confinement, and all its attend. ing evils are not the penalty, but the consequences of his guilt.” To this I reply ;—But if the criminal is fully pardoned and justified from all which lay against him, ought he to be detained in confinement, and all its attending evils ? Where would be the justice of such a course? That Christians do suffer the evils of the present life, and natural death, are facts which none will deny. Yet if eternal death be all the curse of the law, and they are fully delivered from that, I see not how such serious consequences, as confinement, and all its attending evils can yet follow. I am ready to believe that such is the goodness of God, that were it consistent with the honour of the divine law which we have broken, the moment we are pardoned, we should be delivered from all the consequences of sin. Contrary however to this, we find those who “made free from sin, and become servants of God, and have their fruit unto holiness,” yet the subjects of pain, disease, and death! I am therefore led to believe with Dr. Macknight, “ That it is the curse of that more ancient law of works, under which Adam and Eve fell, and which, through their fall, came on all their posterity. Also it is the curse of the law of nature, under which all mankind, as the subjects of God's universal moral government, are lying for having broken that law." Again Mr. H. observes;

Besides, so far as we suppose mankind to suffer the curse of the law, in the present life, so far the present is a state of retribution. It is a sentiment of scripture, that at the day of judgment, we are to render an account for the deeds done in the body." I answer; The same argument would prove that the intermediate state, from death to the judgment, is a state of retribution. For no one can suppose, that at death, saints and sinners go into a promiscuous company, and all share the same lot until the day of judgment. Yet who

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would suppose, that the misery of the wicked from death to the judgment, forms no part of the curse of the law ? altho' it is a sentiment of scripture, that at the day of judgment we are to render an account for the deeds done in the body." The day of judgment will without doubt be the time of final reckoning, yet this does not prove that the Almighty does not often adıninister in a judicial way before that time. What did our Saviour mean when he said, “For judgment I am come into this world; that they which see not. might see, and that they which see, might be made blind ?John ix. 39.--Compare this with Matt. xiii. 13-Isa. vi. 9, 10, &c. and it will be seen, that God often sends judgments upon mankind even in this life. But this he tells us is « mingling a state of trial and probation, with that of retribution." So it seems in some degree, yet who are we, that we reply against God ?-“Wherefore doth a living man complain, a man for the punisiment of his sins ?” Lam. iii 39; For even Zion saith, “The yoke of my transgressions is bound by his hand.Again, speaking of the evils of the present life, he says-" These trials and afflictions are often impor. tant means of grace.” True; Because God is able to bring good out of these evils; yet this does not alter their nature: they are evils, and I think, punishments still. In another part of his book, Mr. H. could very easily suppose, that two very different ends could be promoted by the same event; even the greatest possible good of the universe, and the damnation of the soul ! But here, if the evils of the present life, are made by the blessing of God, “important means of grace,” they cannot according to him, at the same time belong to the curse of the law! The former however, we deem to be highly inconsistent, while the latter perfectly agrees with matter of fact. See 1 Cor. x. 5, 6. Whenever

the evils of the present life are however, made important means of grace, it is through that blood which

-“Through earth and skies,
Mercy, free,
boundless mercy

cries !" The next question contains another objection to the sys• tem we oppose. It runs thus—" If the evils of the

present life, be no part of the penalty of sin, is it not unjust for sinners to suffer them ?" p. 87, To this question he answers : " As it would be just for God to execute upon the sinner immediately, the penalty of the law, it cannot be unjust to suspend the execution, that he may give him an opportunity to repent and secure everlasting life ; neither can it be un, just for God to send upon him, during this suspension, other evils, which are infinitely less than he deserves."

Here I would first observe-the question is not whether it is just for God to suspend the execution of eternal death, and send other evils upon the sinner, as means of mercy ; but whether if eternal death be all the curse of the law, it is not unjust for sinners to suffer any thing more or besides that on account of sin.

Mr. H. tells us(p. 83) that "It must certainly be admitted, that all which the sinner deserves for his sin, is threatened by the law, if the law be a just and perfect rule.". Very well, then : do sinners deserve to suffer spiritual and tempo. ral death, and the evils of the present life? You dare not say they do not deserve them. Well, if they deserve them, then they were threatened by the law : of course they be. long to the curse on his own principle. Moreover, does not Mr. H. tacitly acknowledge here, that the evils of the pres. ent life are a part of the curse of the law, by saying, that God sends upon the sinner "other evils” during the suspen. sion of eternal death? Above he states, that they are the "s natural consequences of sin," but here, that God sends

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them! If both these assertions are true (which I am inclined to admit) then although they are the natural consequences of sin, yet they partake of the nature of punishments still.That they are sent in consequence of the original breach of the law, we have already shown from Genesis, third chapter. I see no other conclusion, than either from the scriptures or the concessions of Mr. H, but these things must be. long to the original curse, We shall close our remarks on this question, by making two inquiries ;-1, Does God suspend the execution of the curse of the law in the case of the reprobates, “that he may give them an opportunity to repent, and secure everlasting life?What ! given them an opportunity to secure what he from eternity unalterably decreed they should never have!! 2. Are “the evils of the present life employed as means of mercy to convince” reprobates of their guilt, and reconcile them to God ?”

Leaving the reader to reconcile these questions (if he can) with the doctrine of our opponents, we pass to consider the last question under this head, "If eternal death be the penalty of the law, was not the declaration of the serpent true—thou shalt not surely die'? and how was the contrary declaration of the Almighty fulfilled ?”

Here Mr. H. is under the necessity of acknowledging, that on supposition that eternal death be all the curse of the law, God did not fulfil the threatening—“In the day thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.But supposing spiri. tual death to be included in the curse, there is no difficulty in the subject; for, in this sense, they did actually die, as we have before seen. The Almighty tells the truth, and the devil is still the father of lies. I see not but our opponents must suppose that the Lord made the above peremptory de. claration without the least intention to fulfil it; for it is certain that God did not inflict eternal death upon them in the

day they ate thereof. Now if (as Mr. H. argues elsewhere,) what he did, he eternally meant to do, he certainly never intended to fulfil the threatning ;“ in the day thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die! In what a light does this represent the divine character ! But he says that there are no thanks to Adam or the serpent, because the threatening was not fulfilled; yet, this does not prove that the serpent according to him, did not tell the truth, when he told them that they should not surely die. Again, he says, “ If the penalty of the law were any thing else, if it were not eternal death, and if it were executed upon him; or in other words, if he did die in the day he ate thereof, then it was impossible for him to be a subject of grace." I reply, 1, Whatever others

say,

I do not hold that eternal death was not included in the curse of the law. 2. That he did die a spiritual death on the day he ate thereof, is unquestionable. Now the question is, have the sufferings which mankind en. dure any merit in them, or are they of any benefit to us abstract from the grace of God ? If not then we are no nearer what we ought to be for suffering in itself considered. But yet, after all, how can we“ be subjects of grace ? 1. I answer with Mr. H. that it was through infinite grace that eternal death was not executed immediately upon Adam and his apostate wife. 2. It is by grace that we are raised from the low dungeon of spiritual death. 3. It is by grace that the numerous evils of the present life are sanctified and made to work for good to them who love God. 4. It is by grace. that it can be said Precious in the sight of the Lord, is the death of his saints.” 5. It is grace that will one day reach even to the dust of the tomb, and reanimate the slumbering millions of the dead! Hence

“'Twas great to speak a world from nought,
But greater to redeem."

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