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fections and infirmities?
Can we then doubt "that Book of Wis dom. the corruptible body presseth down the soul, and the earthy tabernacle weigheth down the mind, that museth upon many things," with such daily experience of the fact within us, and before us in others? And if the passions have power to obtain a temporary influence over the mind, so far as to suspend its faculties, and which the strongest mind cannot always repress-Is it unreasonable to believe they have the power to obtain a full possession of the faculties of the mind, so far as to prevent the true perception of things for a longer period, and which captivity of the mind, constitutes insanity, as the Scriptures declare?
It was by these passions mankind fell from their purity in the Holy Spirit of God in love, joy, and peace; and, therefore, the infirmities and miseries they endure, are the consequences of them. If then, it shall please the Almighty to take those passions from them, as he has promised, and shall restore them in the purity of his Holy Spirit-all those miseries and infirmities will cease, and love, joy, and peace succeed them. This, then, is the revealed will of God to mankind in the Scriptures, and supported by every evidence a reasonable mind can require.
We now therefore ask-What evidence is there to controvert it? We see that God has established the creation within our reach upon immutable laws: and he has given to each of us a mind to perceive
Eccl. iii. 21.
and remember those laws, and to exercise it in reasoning of their effects, as the guide for our preservation and comforts.
In that creation are our bodies, subject to be disordered by any cause which affects those immutable laws, which govern them in health. The Scriptures reveal, that God has created spirits of evil, in which we live, that do affect those immutable laws, and cause all the diseases and sorrows incident to our nature. But, with the mind he has been pleased to give us to exercise, he has also placed within its reach the remedies, in many cases, by the knowledge of the chemical laws which govern material substances with each other: and to discover those laws is the business of the physician. But the various imperceptible operations of this base terrestrial spirit-in which we live-a physician can no more prevent, from depraving our appetites, and exciting vain fancies, and laying the foundation of disease, and in holding the mind captive in fractures and fevers, that affect the organs of the brain-by which the regular laws are impeded than he can prevent the blights and mildews in the vegetable creation!
Hence, "who knoweth the spirit of man that goeth upward, and the spirit of the beast that goeth downward to the earth?"
Hence, "In the midst" of the spirit "of life we are in" the spirit of "death: of whom may we seek for succour, but of thee, O Lord!"
As the children of Israel were the children of promise, or seed of the woman, the law given them by Moses forbade all the actions of malignity,which made the fruit of the tree of evil known! Therefore, to fulfil that law, they must have been only in the purity of the Holy Spirit of God, and of life; but not having fulfilled it, they were under the curse of it, and in the spirit of death,-as is evident by the words of Moses.
"See, I have set before thee this day life and Deut. xxx. 15. good, and death and evil: In that I command thee this day to love the Lord thy God, to walk in his ways, and to keep his commandments, and his statutes, and his judgments, that thou mayest live and multiply: and the Lord thy God shall bless thee in the land, whither thou goest to possess it. But if thine heart turn away, so that thou wilt not hear, but shalt be drawn away, and worship other gods, and serve them; I denounce unto you this day, that shall surely ye perish. I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live: that thou mayest love the Lord thy God, and that thou mayest obey his voice, and that thou mayest cleave unto Him: for He is thy life, and the length of thy days: that thou mayest dwell in the land which the Lord sware unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give them."
The words of St. Paul accord with it. "For the Rom. vii. 10.
Heb. xi. 9.
Heb. xi. 6.
Gal. iii. 16.
commandment which was ordained to life" in fulfilling it, "I found to be unto death," in not fulfilling it. And, that the patriarchs did not receive the land of promise is also evident. "By faith Abraham sojourned in the land of promise as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles, with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise: for he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God." "These" (with Abel, Enoch, Noah, and Sarah) "all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. For they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country:—that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he hath prepared for them a city."- "But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God, must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.”
Now these people, to whom the promises were made, pleased God, by a firm belief in the word of God, that he could, and would do all that he had promised; therefore they were justified before the giving of the law of Moses: but if the justification of mankind was intended to have been obtained by the law; it would have been given to Abraham instead of the promises. "Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not,
and to seeds, as of many; but as of one, and to thy seed, which is Christ."-" Wherefore then serveth Gal. iii. 19. the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come, to whom the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator. Now a mediator is not a mediator of one, but God is one. Is the law then against the promises of God? God forbid: for if there had been a law given which could have given life, verily righteousness should have been by the law. But the Scriptures hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe; but before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up from the faith, which should afterwards be revealed. Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster, to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith;" that is, to bring us into the purity of the Spirit of God. "But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster; for ye are all the children of God, by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ, have put on
the Holy Spirit of "Christ.
There is neither Jew
nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one Spirit in Christ Jesus. And if ye be
ye Abraham's seed, and heirs promise."
Christ's, then are
according to the
"Now, I say, that the heir, as long as he is a Gal. iv. child, differeth nothing from a servant, though he