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IV.

DISC. of truth, in it's original and proper colours. The expreffions tally, to the minutest degree of exactnefs. The "defire of the "flesh" answers to "good for food;" the "defire of the eyes" is parallel with "fair "to the fight;" and the "pride of life" correfponds with "a Tree to be defired to "make one wife." The oppofition between this Tree and the other is strongly marked. "If any man love the World, the love of "the Father is not in him." And we are informed, that one leads to death, the other to life. "The world paffeth away, and "the defire thereof; but he that doth the "will of God abideth for ever." Precifely conformable, in every circumftance, was the threefold temptation of the second Adam. He was tempted to convert stones into bread for food, to fatisfy " the defire "of the flesh;" he was tempted with the kingdoms of the world and the glories of them, to fatisfy "the defire of the eyes; he was tempted to work a miracle on the pinnacle of the temple, and to fhew himfelf moving aloft through the air in the

fight of the multitude, to difplay the DISC. pride of life." He repelled the tempter,

as our first parents should have done, and as we their children fhould do now, inftead of judging according to appearances, by a firm and refolute appeal to the Revelation of God.

Thus, whether we confider the Tree of Knowlege as to it's nature, it's fituation, it's defign, or it's qualities, it feems to have been a very apt and fignificant emblem of the Creature, or the World, with it's delights and it's glories, the objects opposed, in every age, to God and his word. To reject the allurements of the former, and obey the dictates of the latter, is the knowlege of good and evil, and the true wisdom of man. So that the forbidden Tree in Paradife, when the divine intentions concerning it are explained from other parts of Scripture, teaches the important lesson more than once inculcated by Solomon, and which was likewife the refult of holy Job's enquiries: "Behold, the fear of the "Lord,

IV.

DISC. "Lord, that is WISDOM; and to DEPART IV. "FROM EVIL IS UNDERSTANDING."

Whoever shall attentively reflect on the evidence which has been produced, and duly confider the perfect coincidence and harmony of the Scriptures and dispensations of God upon the fubject, will, perhaps, be convinced, that, in the main, we must have fixed upon the true expofition of "the knowlege of good and evil," and the nature of man's original trial. There is a doubt, or difficulty, which offers itself, and may feem to require a folution. It is this. We all know, as the state of human affairs is at prefent, by what manner, and by what temptations, the world folicits our defires after objects forbidden but what temptation, you will fay, could it hold forth to our first parents, exifting alone, invefted with fovereignty over it, and poffeffed of all it's pleasures, and it's glories, in the Garden of Eden? This queftion will, perhaps, be best anfwered by afking one or two more. What

tempta

IV.

temptation, then, let it be asked, could the DISC. world present to the people of God, when placed in the land of Promife, and blessed with every species of temporal felicity? What temptation can the world present to a pious Christian, placed by Providence in a ftate of affluence, and furnished with every good that his heart can with for? The truth is, that the world, even fuppofing it to have been lawfully attained, and to be in ever so good hands, has this power of temptation; it may engage the attention of the human mind, and attract to itfelf the affections of the human heart, till, by degrees, it's Maker is forfaken and forgotten. It may induce a man to confider it as an abode, and no longer to defire a removal to higher and better things with God above." Beware," fays Mofes, "left "when thou haft eaten, and art full, thine "heart be lifted up, and thou forget the "Lord thy God"." This proved to be the cafe of the Ifraelites. It is the temptation too often fatal both to nations and

n Deut. viii. 14.

indivi

IV.

DISC. individuals, when indulged by Heaven with success and prosperity. And if the world, obfcured as it's brightness has been by the fall, can and does now produce fuch an effect on the wifeft of those that are at any time favoured with a large share of it, how much more muft it have been able to charm, and to deceive, when firft formed in perfect beauty! Confidering this circumftance, and withal, how "the Crea"ture," in the earlieft ages, was

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shipped and ferved, inftead of the Crea"tor," one is almost ready to think it po1fible, that Idolatry itself might take it's beginning in Eden.

From the fad experience of those who have gone before us, let us learn to have recourse to the law of God, for our knowlege of good and evil, and to refrain from the fruit of the forbidden Tree, the Tree of Death. Of this fruit, though proceeding from the fame root, there have been different kinds put forth and exhibited in different periods of time, agreeable to the turn

and

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