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From what has been said, it may be gathered, that the original righteousness explained was universal and natural, yet mutable.
First, It was universal ; both with respect to the subject of it, the whole man; and the obj- of it, the whole law. Universal i say, with respect to the subject of it; for this righteousness was diffused through the whole man; it was a blessed leaven that leavened the whole lump. There was not one wrong pin in the tabernacle of human nature, when God set it up, however shattered it is now. Man was then holy in soul, body, and spirit: while the soul remained untainted, it's lodging was kept pure and undefiled : the members of the body were consecrated vessels, and instruments of righteousness, A combat betwixt flesh and spirit, reason and appetite ; nay the least inclination to fin, lust of the flesh in the inferior part of the foul, was utterly inconsistent with this uprightness, in which man was created: and has been invented to vail the corruption of man's nature, and to obscure the grace of God in Jesus Christ : 'it looks very like the language of fallen Adam, laying his own fin at 'his Maker's door, Gen. iii. 12. The woman whom thou gaveft to be with me, he gave me of the tree, and I did eat: But as this righteousness was universal in respect of the subject, because it spread through the whole man, so also it was universal, in respect of the object, the holy law : There was nothing in the law, but what was agreeable to his reason and will, as God made him : tho' sin hath now set him at odds with it : his soul was shapen out, in length and breadth to the commandment, tho' exceeding broad : so that this original righteousness was not only perfect in parts, but in elegrees.
SECONDLY, As it was universal, so it was natural to him, and not fupernatural in that state. Not that it was essential to man, as man; for then he could not have lost it, without the loss of his very being; but it was con-natural to himn :. He was created with it, and it was necessary to the perfection of man, as he came out of the hand of God: necessary to constitute him in a state of integrity. Yet,
THIRDLY, It was mutable; it was a righteousness that might be lost, as is manifested by the doleful event : His will was not absolutely indifferent to good or evil : God set it towards good only; yet he did not so fix and confirm it's inclinations, that it could not alter. No, it was moveable to evil : and that only by man himself, God having given him a sufficient power to stand in this integrity, if he had pleased : Let no man quarrel God's works in this ; for if Adam had been unchangeably righteons, he behoved to have been so either by nature, or by free gift: by nature he could not be so, for that is proper to God, and incommunicable to any creature : if by free gift, then no wrong was done him, in with-holding of what he could not
Confirmation in a righteous state, is a reward of grace, given upon continuing righteous, thro' the state of trial ; and would have been given to Adam, if he had stood out the time appointed for probation by the Creator ; and accordingly is given to the faints,
upon the account of the merits of Christ, who was obedient even to the death. And herein believers have the advantage of Adam, that they can never totally nor finally fall away from grace.
Thus was man made originally righteous, being created in God's own image, Gen. i. 27. which consists in the politive qualities of knowledge, righteousness and holiness, Col. iii. 10. Eph. iv. 24. A! that God made was very good, according to their several natures, Gen. i. 31. And so was man morally good, being made after the image of Him, who is good and upright, Psal. xxv. 8. Without this, she could not have anfwered the great end of his creation, which was to know, love, and serve his God, according to his will. Nay, he could not be created otherwise : for he behoved either to be conform to the law, in his powers, principles, and inclinations, or not : if he was, then he was righteous; and, if not, he was a sinner, which is abfurd and horrible to imagine.
Of Man's Original Happiness. Secondly, I Mall lay before you some of those things which did accompany or flow from the righteoulness of man's primitive state : Happiness is the result of holiness; and as it was an holy, so it was an happy state.
First, Man was then a very glorious creature. We have reason to suppose, that as Moses' face shone when he came down from the mount, fo man had a very lightsome and pleasant countenance, and beautiful body, while as yet there was 'no darkness of sin in hiin at all. But seeing God himself is glorious in holiness, (Exod. xv. u.) surely that fpiritual comeliness the Lord put upon man at his creation, made him a very glorious creature. O! how did light shine in his holy conversation, to the glory of the Creator! while every action was but the darting forth of a ray and beam of that glorious, unmixed light, which God had set up in his soul ; while that -lamp of love, lighted from Heaven, continued burning in his heart, as in the holy place; and the law of the Lord, put in his inward parts by the finger of God, was kept by him there, as in the most holy : There was no impurity to be seen without; no squint look in the eyes, after any unclean thing; the tongue (poke nothing but the language of Heaven : And, in a word, The King's fon was all glorious within, and his clothing of wrought gold.
Secondly, He was the favourite of Heaven: He shone brightly in the image of God, who cannot but love his own image, where-ever it appears.
While he was alone in the world, he was not alone, for God was with him: His communion and fellowship was with his Creator, and that immediately; for as yet there was nothing to turn away the face of God from the work of his own hands; seeing fin had not as yet entered, which alone could make the breach.
By the favour of God, he was advanced to be confederate with Heaven, in the first Covenant, called, The Covenant of Works. God reduced the Law, which he gave in his creation, into the form
of a Covenant, whereof perfect obcdience was the condition : life was the thing promised, and death the penalty. As for the condition, one great branch of the natural Law was, that man believe whatsoever God Mall reveal, and do wiiatsoever he fall command: Accord. ingly God making this Covenant with man, extended his duty to the not eating of the tree of knowledge of good and evil; and the law thus extended, was the rule of man's covenant-obedience. How easy were these terins to him, whe had the natural law written on his heart; and that inclining him to obey this positive Law, revealed to him, it seeins, by an audible voice, (Gen. ii. 16.) the matter whereof was so very eafy? And indeed it was highly reasonable that the rule and matter of his covenant-obedience should be thus extended: that which was added, being a thing in itself indifferent, where his obedience was to turn upon the precise point of the will of God, the plainest evidence of true obedience, and it being in an external thing, wherein his obedience or disobedience would be moft clear and confpicuous.
Now, upon this condition, Gou promised him life, the continuance of natural life in the union of soul and body; and of spiritual life in the favour of his Creator : he promised him also eternal life in heaven, to have been entered into, when he should have passed the time of his triał upon earth, and the Lord Mould see meet to transport him hito the upper Paradise. This promise of life was included in the threatning of death mentioned, Gen. ii. 17. For while God says, In the day thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die ; it is in effect, if thou do not eat of it, thou shalt Lurely live: And this was facramentally confirmed by another tree in the garden, called therefore, the Tree of Life, which he was debarred from, when he ? had sinned, Gen. iii. 22, 23. --Left he put forth his hand, and take also of the Tree of Life, and eat, and live for ever. Therefore the Lord God sent him forth from the garden of Eden. Yet it is not to be thought, that man's life and death did hang only on this matter of the forbidden fruit, but on the whole Law; for so says the Apostle, Gal jii. 10 It is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things, which are written in the Book of the Law, to-do them. That of the forbidden fruit, was a revealed part of Adam's religion; and so behoved exprelly to be laid before him : but as to the natural Law, he naturally knew death to be the reward of disobedience ; for the very Heathens were not ignorant of this : Knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, Rom. i. 32. And moreover, the promise included in the threatning, fecured Adam's life according to the Covenant, as long as he obeyed the natural Law with the addition of that positive command ; so that he needed nothing to be expressed to him in the Covenant, but what concerned the eating of the forbidden fruit : That eternal life in heaven was promised in this Covenant, is plain from this, that the threatning was of eternal death in hell; to which when man had made himself liable, Christ was promised, by his death to purchase
eternal life: and Christ himself expounds the promise of the Covenant of Works of eternal life, while he promiseth the condition of that Covenant, to a proud young man, who tho' he had not Adam's Itock, yet would needs enter into life in the way of working, as-Adam was to have done under this covenant, Matth. xix. 17. If thou wilt enter into life,(viz.eternal life, by doing, ver. 16.) keep the Commandments..
The penalty was death, Gen. ii. 17. In the day that thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die : The death threatned was such, as the life promised was; and that most justly, to wit, temporal, spiritual, and eternal death. The event is a commentary on this : for that very day he did eat thereof, he was a dead man in law; but the execution was stopped, because of his posterity then in his loins ; : and another Covenant was prepared; however, that day his body got it's death-wound, and became mortal. Death also seized his soul : he lost his original righteousness and the favour of God; witness the gripes and throws of conscience, which made him hide himself from God. And he became liable to eternal death, which would have actually followed of course, if a Mediator had not been provided, who found him bound with the cords of death, as a malefactor ready to be led to execution. Thus you have a short description of the Covenant, into which the Lord brought man, in the estate of innocence.
And seemeth it a finall thing unto you, that earth was thus confederate with heaven? This could have been done 10 none but him, whom the King of heaven delighted to honour. It was an act of grace worthy of the gracious God whose favourite he was; for there was grace and free favour in ihe first covenant, tho' the exceeding riches of grace, (as the Apostle calls it, Eph. ii 7.) was reserved for the second. It was certainly an act of grace, favour, and admirable condescension in God, to enter into a covenant, and such a covenant with his own creature. Man was not at his own, but at God's disposal : Nor had he any thing to work with, but what he had received from God. There was no proportion betwixt the work and the promised reward. Before that covenant, man was bound to perfect obedience, in virtue of his natural dependence on God: and death was naturally the wages of fin; which the justice of God could and would have required, tho' there had never been any covenant betwixt God and man: but God was free; man could never have required eternal life as the reward of his work, if there had not been fuch a Covenant. God was free to have disposed of his creature as he saw meet: and if he had stood in his integrity as long as the world should stand, and there had been no Covenant promising eternal life to him upon his obedience; God might have withdrawn his supporting hand at last, and so made him creep back into the womb of nothing, whence almighty power had drawn him out : And what wrong could there have been in this, while God should have taken back what he freely gave? But now the Covenant being made, God becomes debtor to his own faithfulness ; if man will work, he may
crave the reward on the ground of the Covenant : Well might the angels then, upon his being raised to this dignity, have giyen him that salutation, Hail thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee.
Thirdly, God made him lord of the world, prince of the inferior creatures, universal lord and emperor of the whole earth. His Creator
gave him dominion over the filh of the sea, and over the fowls of the air, over all the earth ; yea, and every living thing that liveth upon the earth: He put all things under his feet, Pfal. viii. 6,7,8. · He gave him a power soberly to use and dispose of the creatures in the earth, sea, and air. Thus man was God's depute-governor in the lower world; and this his dominion was an image of God's sovereignty. This was common to the man and the woman; but the man had one thing peculiar to him, to wit, that he had dominion over the woman also, i Cor. xi. 7. Behold how the creatures came to him, to own their subjection, and to do him homage as their lord; and quietly stood before him, till he put names on them as his own, Gen. ii. 19. Man’s face struck an awe upon them; the stoutest creatures stood astonished, tamely and quietly adoring him as their lord and ruler. Thus was man crowned with glory and honour, Psal. viii. 5. The Lord dealt moft liberally and bountifully with him, put all things under his feet ; only he kept one thing, one tree in the garden out of his hands, even the tree of knowledge of good and evil.
But you may fay, And did he grudge him this? I answer, Nay; but when he had made him thus holy and happy, he graciously gave him this restriction, which was in it's own nature, a prop and stay to keep him from falling. And this I say, upon these three grounds. (1.) As it was most proper for the honour of God, who had made man lord of the lower world, to assert his fovereign dominion over all
, by some particular visible sign; so it was most proper for man's safety. Man being set down in a beautiful paradise, it was an act of infinite wisdom, and of grace too, to keep from him one single tree, as a visible testimony, that he must hold all of his Creator, as his great Landlord ; that so, while he saw himself lord of the creatures, he might not forget that he was still God's subject. (2.) This was a memorial of his mutable state given in to him from heaven, to be laid up by him for his great caution : For man was created with a free will to good, which the Tree of Life was an evidence of : but his will was also free to evil, and the Forbidden Tree. was to him a memorial thereof. It was, in a manner, a continual watch-word to him against evil, a beacon set up before him, to bid him beware of dashing himself to pieces, on the rock of sin. (3.) God made man upright, directed towards God as the chief end. He set him like Moses, on the top of the hill, holding up his hands to heaven : and as Aaron and Hur stayed up Moses' hands, Exod. xv. 10, 11, 12. so God gave man an erect figure of body, and forbid him the eating of this tree ; to keep him in that posture of uprightness, wherein he was created.' God made the beasts looking down towards the earth, to