« PreviousContinue »
says, “That which is born of the flesh is flesh, he means not only, that we and our parents are mortal; but that all mankind derive spiritual as well as temporal death, from their first father.
“1. Sin is a transgression of the law,' of that law of
6 God to which a rational creature is subject. Righteousness is, a fulfilment of, or conformity to that law. This is the proper scriptural sense of the words. But as sin involves the creature in guilt, that is a liableness to punishment, the same words are often used, to denote either sin itself, or guilt and punishment. On the other hand, righteousness denotes not only a fulfilling of the law; but also a freedom from guilt, and punishments: Yea, and sometimes all the rewards of righteousness. (p. 1, 2.).
“Accordingly, to impute sin, is either to impute sin itself, or guilt on the account of it. To įmpute sin itself to a person, is to account him a transgressor of the law : to pro: nounce him such: or to treat him as a transgressor, To impute guilt to a person, is to account him obnoxious to a threatened punishment: to pronounce him so; or to inflict that punishment. So, to impute righteousness, properly so called, is to account him a fulfiller of the law: to pronounce him so to be; and to treat him as righteous. And to impute righteousness as opposed to guilt, is to account, to pronounce, and to treat him as guiltless. (p. 5.)
56 Thus much is agreed. But the point in question is, 6 Does God impute no sin or righteousness but what is personal?” Dr. Taylor positively, asserts, he does not. I undertake to prove, that he does : that he imputes Adam's first sin to all mankind, and our sins to Christ. (p. 5.)
61. God imputes Adam's first sin to all mankind. I do not mean that the actual commission of it was imputed to any beside himself: (it was impossible, it should.) Nor is the guilt of it imputed to any of his descendants, in the full latitude of it, or in regard to its attendant circumstances. It constitutes none of them equally guilty with him. Yet both that sin itself, and a degree of guilt on account of it, are imputed to all his posterity: the sin itself is imputed to them, as included in their head. And on this account, they are reputed guilty, are children of wrath,' liable to the threatened punishment. And this cannot be denied, supposing, 1. Man's original righteousness. 2. Adam's being the federal head of all mankind. (p. 6.)
“Man's original righteousness has been largely proved. Let me add only an argument ad hominem. Supposing (not granting) that the Son of God, is no more than the first of creatures, either he was originally righteous, or he was not. If he was not, then time was, when he was not The Holy One of God; and possibly he never might have been such, no, nor righteous at all: but instead of that, as ungodly, guilty, and wretched as the devil himself is. For the best creature is (Dr. Taylor grants) alterable for the worse, and the best when corrupted becomes the worst. - Again if the Son of God was a mere créature, and as such made without righteousness (which every creature must be according to Dr. Taylor) then he was not, could not be at first as righteous, as like God as the holy angels are now, yea, or as any holy man on earth is. But if these suppositions are shockingly absurd, if the Son of God could not have become as bad as the devil, if he never was uhrighteous, if he was not originally less holy, than angels and men are now: then the assertion, « That righteousness must be the effect of a creature's antecedent choice and endeavour," falls to the ground. (p. 7, 9.) - “ But the Hebrew word. Jasher, Dr. Taylor says not generally signify a moral character." This is one of the numerous critical mistakes in this 'gentleman's books. Of the more than 150 texts in which Jasher, or the substan
tive Josher occurs, there are very few which do not confirm our interpretation of Eccles. vii. 29. “But Jasher is applied to various things not capable of moral action.” It is, and what then? Many of these applications are neither for us nor against us. Some make strongly for us; as when it is applied to the words or ways of God and man. But the question now is, what it signifies, when applied to God or to moral agents, and that by way of opposition to a vicious character and conduct? Is it not in the text before us, applied to man as a moral agent, and by way of opposition to a corrupt character and conduct ? No man can deny it. Either, therefore, prove, That Jasher, when opposed, as here, to a corrupt conduct and character, does not signify righteous, or acknowledge the truth, that God created man upright or righteous.' (p. 11.)
“ To evade the argument from Eph. iv. 24, Dr. Taylor first
says, “ The old man means an heathénish life, and then says, “ The old and new man do not signify a course of life.” What then do they signify? Why, “The old man,” says he, “ relates to the Gentile state : and the new man is either the Christian state, or the Christian church, body, society.” But, for all this, he says again a page or two after, “ The old and new man, and the new man's being renewed, and the renewing of the Ephesians do all manifestly refer to their Gentile state and wicked course of life, from which they were lately converted.” (p. 13.)
“When then the apostle says, (Rom. vi. 6.) Our old man is crucified with Christ,' is it the Gentile state or course of life which was so crucified ?
No: but the corrupt
6 nature,' the body of sin,' as it is termed in the same verse. And 'to put off the old man' is (according to St. Paul) 'to crucify this with its affections and desires.' On the other hand, To put on the new man, is to cultivate the divine principle, which is formed in the soul of every believer, by the Spirit of Christ. It is this of which it is said, 1. It is created ; and in regard to it we are said to be created unto good works.' 2. It is renewed; for it is indeed no
other than original righteousness restored. 3. It is after God, after his image and likeness, now stamped afresh on the soul. 4. It consists in righteousness and holiness, or that knowledge which comprehends both. (p. 14.)
“ Again, to that argument, “ Either man at first loved God, or he was an enemy to God,” Dr. Taylor gives only this slight superficial answer, “ Man could not love God
, before he knew him :" without vouchsafing the least notice of the arguments which prove, that man was not created without the knowledge of God. Let him attend to those proofs, and either honestly yield to their force, or if he is able, fairly confute them.
" The doctrine of original sin pre-supposes, ! «2. Adam's being the federal head of all mankind. Several proofs of this having been given already, I need not produce more till those are answered.
« II. God imputes our sins or the guilt of them to Christ. He consented to be responsible for them, to suffer the punishment due for them. This sufficiently appears from Isa. liii. which contains a summary of the scripture doctrine upon this head. "He hath borne our griefs and
“ carried our sorrows. The word Nasa (borne) signifies, 1. To take up somewhat, as on one's shoulders; 2. To bear or carry something weighty, às a porter does a burden; 3. To take away: and in all these senses it is here applied to the Son of God: he carried, as a strong man does a heavy burden (the clear, indisputable sense of the other word, Sabal) our sorrows; the sufferings of various kinds, which were due to our sins. '' He was wounded for our transgressions, and brúised for our iniquities. Wounds and bruises are put for the whole of his sufferings; as bis death and blood frequently are. He was wounded and bruised, not for sins of his own; not merely to shew God's hatred of sin; not chiefly, to give us a pattern of patience:
1 but for our sins, as the proper, impulsive cause. Our sins were the procuring cause of all his sufferings. His suffer= ings were the penal effects of our sins. The chastisement of our peace,' the punishment necessary to procure it, was
laid on him, freely submitting thereto: 'and hy his stripes,' (a part of his sufferings again put for the whole,) 'we are healed ;' pardon, sanctification, and final salvation, are all purchased and bestowed upon us. Every chastisement is for some fault. That laid on Christ was not for his own, but ours; and was needful to reconcile an offended Law. giver, and offending guilty creatures to each other. So
the Lord laid on him the iniquity of us all,' that is, the punishment due to our iniquity. (p. 17—20.) “ It is true, as Dr. Taylor says, “Sin and iniquity often
“ signify affliction or suffering.” But why? Because it is usual for a cause to give denomination to its effect. And so the consequences of sin are called by the same name. But this rather hurts Dr. Taylor's cause than helps it. For suffering's could with no propriety be called sin, if they were not the proper effects of it. Man in innocence was liable to no suffering or sorrow; he was indeed tried; but not by suffering. All sorrow. was introduced by sin; and if man is born to trouble, it is because he is born in sin., God indeed does afflict his children for their good; and turns even death into a blessing. Yet as it is the effect of sin, so is it in itself an enemy to all mankind: nor would any man have been either tried or corrected by affliction, had it not been for sin. (p. 21, 22.)
66. The Lord's laying on Christ the iniquity of us all' was eminently typified by the high-priest, putting all the iniquities of Israel on the scape-goat,' who then carried them away. “ But the goat,” says Dr. Taylor, “ was to suffer nothing." This is a gross mistake. It was a sin-offering, (ver. 5,) and as such was to bear upon him all the iniquities,' of the people into the wilderness, and there, (as the Jewish doctors unanimously hold,) to suffer a violent death, by way of punishment, instead of the people, for their sins put upon him. Yet Dr. Taylor says, " Here was no imputation of sin.” No! What is the difference be. tween imputing sins, and putting them upon him? This is just of a piece with “A sin-offering that suffered nothing.” A creature “ turned loose into a land the properest for itş