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ment of two or more parties on certain terms ? Now in this sense God covenanted with man, and man covenanted with God. God gave a law, promising life in case of obedience, and threatening death in case of disobedience. And man accepted of the terms. Here therefore was a real covenant. (p. 31.)
“But to guard this against objections, I add,
“1. We do not affirm, that God visibly appeared, and formally treated with Adam, as one man with another. Without só formal a procedure, God could and doubtless did, signify to him, on what terms he was to expect life or death. (p. 32.)
“We do not assert, that God promised to translate him to heaven; but without question he made Adam sensible, that if he continued obedient he should continue happy, whether in Paradise or some other region.
“ 3. If one greatly superior will freely condescend to treat with an inferior, this does not disannul the mutual agreement, or hinder its having the nature of a covenant. So God entered into a proper covenant with Abraham of old, and with his people in the gospel. And if so, much more might lie do so with man, when perfectly upright toward God. (p. 33.)
" And this covenant was made with Adam not only for himself, but likewise for all his posterity. This appears,
“1. From the tenor of the original threatening, compared with the present state of mankind. For it is evident, that every one of his posterity is born liable to death: that the death to which all are liable, was not threatened but in case of man's sinning: that man was not liable to death till he sinned, and his being so was the result of the threatening; and, that the Scripture constantly points at sin as the sole cause of death, and of all suffering. But if all man. kind are born liable to that which was originally threatened only to'sin, then all mankind are accounted sinners, and as such are concerned in the original threatening, and conse.. quently in the original promise. (p. 34.)
« 2. From 1 Cor. xv: 22. In Adam all die.' Here the apostle speaks not of both our parents, but of Adam singly,
(as also Rom. v.) to denote our peculiar relation to him. The all mentioned are all his natural descendants, who all die in or through him, that is, are liable to death on account of their relation to him. And it is not only a bodily death that is here spoken of; for it stands opposed not to a pare revival of the body, but to a happy and glorious resurrection, such as they that are Christ's will partake of at his second coming. For of this resurrection, not that of the ungodly, the apostle is speaking throughout this chapter. But they could not die in Adam, if they did not in some sense sin in him, and fall with him: if the covenant had not been made with him, not for himself only but for all his posterity, (p. 35, 36.)
« 3. From verse 45 and 47 of the same chapter. The first Man, Adam, and the second Man, the last Adam, are here opposed. Now why is Christ, notwithstanding the millions of men intervening between Adam and him, and following after his birth, called the second Man, and the last Adam? We have an answer, Rom. v. 12, 14, &c, where Adam is said to be a figure of Christ : and the resemblance between them is shewn to lie in this, that as sin and death descend from one, so righteoustiess and life from the other. Consequently what Christ is with regard to all his spiritual seed, that Adam is with regard to all his natural descendants, namely, a public person, a federal head, a legal representative : one with whom the covenant was made not only for himself, but also for his whole posterity."
JOHN iii, 5, 6. Except a Man be born of Water and of the Spirit, he cannot
enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh, is fleshi: and that which is
born of the Spirit, is Spirit.
“ II]. The original Corruption of every child of Adam observed, as that from which the necessity of such a change arises.
“). The New Birth is here described. Whatever this implies, the Spirit of God is the sole author of it. He does not help a man to regenerate himself, but takes the work into his own hands. A child of God, as such, is not born of blood; does not become so by a descent from pious parents. He is not born of the will of the flesh, iş not renewed by the power of his own carnal will; nor of man, of any man whatsoeyer, but of God: by the sole power of his Spirit,
“In regeneration the Holy Spirit mortifies the old man, .corrupt natnre, and breathes a principle of life into the soul : a principle of faith, of sincere love, and willing obedience to God. He who was dead in sin, is now dead to sin, and alive to God through Jesus Christ,' God has created in him a clean heart, and renewed a right spirit within hịm.' He has created him unto good works,' and written his law in his heart,' But if the Spirit of God is the sole agent in the work of regeneration; if the soul of man has no active interest or concern in his being born again:' if man was created holy, and regeneration re-instamps that holy image of God on the soul : if the new man is created after God in righteousness and true holiness :' if the corruption of pature (termed the old man or flesh') is not contracted by imitation or custom, þut is an inbred, hereditary distemper, coeval with our nature: if all truly good works are the fruits of a good heart, a good principle wrought in the soul ; it plainly follows, that the faith, hope, love, fear, which distinguish the children of God from others, are not of the nature of acquired, but of infused habits or principles. To say then, " That all holiness must be the effect of a man's own choice apd endeavour, and that by a right use of his natural powers every man may and must attain a habit of holiness, that is, be born again: however pleasing it may be to human vanity, is contrary to the whole tenor of Scripture.
“And all the scriptural expressions on this head are grounded on the real nature of things. Sin is of the nature of filth and corruption. It pollutes the whole man, and readers him as an unclean thing in the sight of God. When therefore the Spirit of God removes this, he is said to cre. ate a clean heart, to purify the heart,' to sprinkle clean water upon us,' to wash us from our filthiness. And this cleansing efficacy is in the text expressed by being born of water and of the Spirit.'.
6 When therefore our Lord speaks of being born of the Spirit, his plain meaning is, there is a spiritual cleansing you must partake of, mentioned in those promises, “I will sprinkle clean water upon you and ye shall be clean, from all your filthiness and from all your idols will I cleanse you. A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will. I put within you. And I will take away the stony heart, and I will give you a heart of flesh. These promises give us a plain description of the Spirit's regenerating work : with: out experiencing which, our state is miserable now, ar will be much more so hereafter.
“ II. For this spiritual renovation of the soul is indis, pensably necessary. Without it none can enter into the kingdom of heaven, either the kingdom of grace or of glory. :
in 20 so'm “ 1. Except a, man be born of the Spirit, he cannoť enter into the kingdom of grace; he cannot be a loyal sub ject of Jesus Christ. By nature we are subjects of Satan: and such we must remain, unless renewing grace translate us into the kingdom of God's dear Son." />T:( tt
“2. Consequently, 'except we are born again, we cannot enter into the kingdom of glory, Indeed, supposing hę could be admitted there, what could an unregenerate sinner do in heaven? He could not possibly have any ; relish either for the business, the company, or the enjoyments of that world.
“ III. Our Lord having asserted the absolute necessity of the New Birth, to shew the ground of this necessity,
learn from its beste hominated flesh. And that flesh is
adds, "That which is born of the flesh, is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit, is spirit.' Here observe,
"1. Our Lord opposes flesh and spirit to each other, which opposition we often meet with. Whatever therefore is meant by these two, they denote things opposite. 1. “ 2. He speaks here of two several births, which are dis tinctly mentioned.
« 3. The former of these two is spoken of as that which renders the other so necessary. Because that which is born of the flesh, is flesh,' therefore we must be born of the Spirit.” Therefore this great change must be wrought in us, or we cannot enter into the kingdom of God.?
44. If the latter of these is made necessary by the former, then to be born flesh-is to be born corrupt and sinful. And indeed the word flesh is very frequently taken for the corrupt principle in mani". It is always so taken when it stands opposed to the spirit, or to that inwrought principle of obedience, which itself also (taking the name of its author) is sometimes termed spirit.
“Now in the text, whatever or whoever is born of a here put, not for sinless frailty, but sinful corruption, we learn from its being opposed to the spirit. - Christ was born frail, as well as we, and in this sense was flesh; yet being without sin he had no need to be born of the Spirit.' This is not made necessary by any 'sinless infirmities, but by a sinful nature only. This alone is opposite to the spirit: thus therefore we must understand it here.
“ But Dr. Taylor says, “ To be born of the flesh is only to be naturally born of a woman. I answer, Is not flesh opposed to spirit in this verse? Is it not the Spirit of God which is spoken of in the latter clause, together with the
principle of grace, which is in every regenerate person? And is any thing beside sinful corruption opposite to the Spirit of God? No certainly: but if so, and if wherever flesh 'is opposed to the Spirit, it implies sinful corruption, then it is evident to be born of the flesh' is to be the sin