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condemn in others we ought not to do, Matt. vii. 12. "Whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them."

Let us anticipate and hope for that period when, instead of the specious war-promoting maxims of the German civilian, Puffendorf, or the Irish civilian, Burke, this of the despised Galilean shall be prevalent in the earth. Surely, as disciples of Christ, we ought to strictly regard this apposite rule of our Lord, to do unto others as we would they should do unto us; but I fear there are some, yes, professors of strict Christiansty, who exchange this rule for another, namely, Do unto others as they respectively do unto you! O Lord suffer us not at any time to act from a principle of revenge and retaliation, as our master never did; but feeling ourselves under a law to Christ, may we have the favour and honour of endeavouring to do rightly although all our neighbours may do wrongly.

Axiom IX. It ought to be our most serious concern to cherish a cheerful consciousness of our perpetual dependence on Divine concurrence by means and mediums, in respect of sustaining our governing purpose, and of discovering the particular instances of our duty, and, of our actually discharging them.

Remark. Our being ruled of God is rightly attributed to his grace or free favour, and our actual obedience, or any degree of obedience to the law of morals, is rightly attributed to gracious aid.— The law of faith with which human sinners are indulged, is, in addition, of Divine mercy, (Ps. lxii. 12,) and our actual obedience to the law of faith is rightly attributed to gracious and merciful assistances. Our being in a state of duty is of God's free favour and mercy, and every actual discharge of our duty is of grace and of mercy.-If all these are of free favour and mercy; let us hope and trust that those of our miscarriages which the highest attainable governing purpose or resolution is inade.

quate to prevent, God of his free favour and mercy will not impute unto man. God undoubtedly knows what is, and what is not within the compass of a human governing resolution perfected to the greatest strength which the animal frame will bear without injury. If there be outward inflictions of pain, for instance, the rack; or inward excesses, for instance, of appetite, which this compass of governing resolution cannot reach; I humbly conceive that in such instances the persons, consequent failure whether in sin or vice, act or omission, will not be imputed by our compassionate Father. "The LORD knoweth our frame; he remembered that we are dust,"

Ps. ciii. 14.

Hunger and thirst may be in some circumstances, I think, such as no attainable resolution of righteousness to our neighbour can resist. We do not blame a person who steals through unavoidable circumstances of hunger or thirst. Prov. vi. 30; Eccles. vii. 16; Lev. xix. 9, 10; Matt. xii. 1. Thus also pro bably, in some circumstances the relative appetite between the sexes may be such as no resolution of chastity can resist. It is better to commit fornication than adultery; but it is better to burn with lascivious desires than to commit fornication; and "better to marry than to burn," 1 Cor. vii. 9. I suppose the apostle meant it is better to marry even in the most discouraging circumstances of the persons.

"It is a wonder that Amram, the father of Moses, would think of the marriage-bed in so troublesome a time, when he knew he should beget children either to slavery or slaughter. Yet even now, in the heat of this bondage, he marries Jochebed. The drowning of his sons was not so great an evil as his own burning: the thraldom of his daughters not so great an evil as the subjection unto sinful desires. He therefore uses God's remedy for his sin, and refers the sequal of his danger to God. How needful is this imitation

for those who have not dominion for containing? Perhaps both would have thought it better to live childless, but Amram and Jochebed durst not incur the danger of sin to avoid the danger of mischief." Is there not equal reason to vindicate some very poor people in their venturing on marriage when they have no reasonable prospect of a competency in case of children? and is there not equal reason for conceiving some other people culpable who have a competency, but from desire to gratify the lust of ambition, or avarice, decline the marriage state?

SECTION III.

Of Imputable Sin

Imputable sin is not merely transgression of law, but also violation of duty. Imputable sin is an act or omission which deviates from the mark of Divine requirement, merely through disinclination of the agent. Conceived as abstracted from any specific act or omittance it is a defect; and for a more comprehensive conception of it, let us view it under the notions of unholiness,-folly,-unrighteousness, -ingratitude, and rebellion against God. Imputable sin, in respect of its inmost spring in man, is unholiness, or impurity, consisting in disorder. Holiness, specially, respects our approbation and preference of religious objects; and love of order, in moral deportment, is essential to its nature. The analagous scriptural notion of holiness seems approbation and preference of moral order, regularity, fitness, or, if you please, moral harmony and beauty:

and the analogous scriptural notion of unholiness seems practical approbation and preference of moral disorder, irregularity, and unfitness. A holy person is one whose tendency to sinning is mortified and who is resigned to, and delights in, the perfect Divine preference, as exhibited in the laws of God. An unholy person is one who is in his state of depravity, dislike of the Divine requirements, and proneness to sensuality and in ordinacy of the flesh and spirit; which vices go essentially to our imputably sinning in thought, emotion, speech, and actions; and hence imputable sin is moral disorder, unholiness, or uncleanness, necessarily digustful to the Deity, the abominable thing which he hates. (Jer. xiiv. 4.) Every act or omission which is imputable sin, involves approbation and preference of an object which God necessarily disapproves and detests. This expression of sin seems to have special relation to that offence, disgust, or dishonourable regard we have of filth and corruption, and is applied by similitude to express the essential repugnance of moral disorder, sin, and wickedness, to the Divine preference.

Secondly. Imputable sin is folly. The thought of foolishness is sin," (Prov. xxiv. 9.) Wisdom and folly are primarily modifications of choice and of chusing. Superior understanding and superior desire go to the essence of human wisdom, which consists in excellent inclining, and excellent endeavouring, under the influence of excellent emotion. If this be a true notion of wisdom, then folly is incongruous inclining, and incongruous endeavouring, under inordinate emotion; and these go to the essence of imputable sin. Again, wisdom or folly is secondarily attributed according to our moral habits. Human folly involves defect of a regular subordination of the passions, inclinations, and endeavours, to the authority of conscience and the direction of knowledge. We are unwise when the egotic passions are not proportioned to our dangers

and wants, when we do not regard time as fleeting existence; when we are not influenced in a superior degree by a probable world to come; and when our thoughts, words, and movements, are not consonant with the highest light our benevolent Maker hath granted us respectively. We are also unwise, when the social passions are not adjusted to our social connexions, as not proportioned to the wants and dangers of our fellow creatures, the advantages which court our mutual attention, or to the requirement of the author of our being. These states of folly go to the essence of imputable vice: hence all sin involves folly, and, through these, the sinner ultimately defeats his own ends. (Jonah ii. 8.)

God is infinitely wise; all his choices are either wise choices, or else original choices which perfectly consist with wisdom. Suppose I were to admit that the greatness, sovereignty, or dominion of God warrants me to say, that God has right to chuse and to act without wisdom, rule, or reason; I have not said, nor will I say, he ever did so, or will do só: on the contrary, rather, is it not demonstrable from his known attributes that he never chuses nor acts from merely sovereignty: and that all he does, though chosen with infinite liberty, is holy, wise, just, and good; or else indifferent things unto, but perfectly consistent with wisdom, justice, and goodness?

Thirdly. Imputable sin is unrighteousness or nonequity, in respect of God. "The Lord is righteous in all his ways:" (Ps. cxlv. 17.) Is just to man in his constructing, disposal, and ruling of him: and that Righteous Being on whom he unlimitedly depends for all his valuables, and legitimate pleasures, has claim in equity to unlimited and perpetual obedience. Disobedience is wrong or unrighteousness to God.Again, sin is wronging one's own soul. Sin is unrighteousness to our own souls. (Prov. viii. 26.) "He who sinneth against me wrongeth his own soul." God is always wronged by our imputable sin; our

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