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the whole of the discourse, in which the words quoted above are introduced, Jesus is blaming the Jews for their infidelity; and it would be very extraordinary indeed, if for this purpose he should make use of an argument, which would entirely exculpate them, intimating that it was not in their power to do otherwise.
Our Lord sufficiently gives us to understand in what sense he uses the word drawing in the passage
quoted above. He explains himself ver. 45. “ It is - written in the prophets.” Isaiah liv. 13. “ And
they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard and learned of the Father, cometh unto me.” This was the way in which God the Father drew some of the Jews to Christ at that time, viz, such of them as, influenced by reverence, love and duty to him, heard attentively, and learned the truths which he had already taught them by Moses and the prophets ; but they who were of a different spirit and conduct, with respect to the divine truths already revealed, could not come to Christ, who constantly referred them to the testimonies of Moses and the prophets in proof of his divine mission. To them " it was not given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven," Matt. xiii. 11. Agreeably hereto he says on another occasion, “ If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself,” John vii. 17. And he thus remonstrates against the unbelievo ing Jews, chap. v. 39, &Go “ Search the scriptures,
for in them ye think ye bave eternal life: and they are they which testify of me. But I know you, that you have not the love of God. in you.-How can ye believe, who receive hovour one of another, and seek not the honour that cometh from God only?” This. appears plainly to be the language of one who considered the cause of the unbelief of these Jews as arising not from natural inability, or the withholding of the grace of God, but from contracted evil principles and habits, to which they determinedly adhered; as he: speaks ver. 40, “ Ye will not come unto me that ye might have life.”
JI. OF ORIGINAL SIN.
That mankind are considerable sufferers in consequence of the fall of Adam is not denied ; but all the evils which Moses specifies as affecting his posterity on that account, are of a corporeal and temporal nature, viz. labour, sorrow, and death. It is possible, indeed, that, the body being more subject to disease, the mind may be more feeble, and therefore more prone to comply with some templations; but then it should also be considered, that a sickly constitution is favourable to many virtues, and we see that a state of confirmned health is often highly dangerous in a moral respect; so that upon the whole it is probable that our condition is more favourable to virtue than that of Adam. That the sacred, writers did not consider it as, upon the whole, worse than
his, is evident from their never giving the least hint, that any allowance will be inade to men for that natural disadvantage. Nay, many of the sinful posterity of Adam are blamed more severely than he was for his sin ; and if we consider his situation and the circumstances of his fall, we cannot suppose that he had greater strength of mind to resist temptation than we are now possessed of. Since, however, some particular texts are alleged, to prove that the nature of man is totally depraved by the fall, insomuch that all mankind, without exception, are now altogether incapable of any good thought, word, or action ; and, moreover, that we are all eubject to the everlasting wrath of God on account of the sin of Adam, I shall give a brief explication of the principal of those texts.
Gen. vi. 5. “And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth; and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.” If we understand this passage literally, it will be contradicted by the character which is immediately afterwards given of Noah, of whom it is said, ver. 9. “ that he was a just man, and perfect in his generation, and that he walked with God.” But it is plain that this wickedness of mankind was not owing to any natural depravity, which their deriva. tion from Adam rendered necessary, but that it was a voluntary corruption, and had its rise from themselves only; for it is said, ver. 12. that “God looked
upon the earth, and behold it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth.” Besides, this state of the world is alleged as a justification of the divine proceedings against them; whereas, if they had been corrupt by the necessity of nature, it must have operated as a plea in their favour, with that being who considers our frame, and remembers that we are but dust. If he makes suitable allowance for the infirmities of our bodies, much more would he consider the natural and necessary disorders of our minds. ..
Job xiv. 4. “Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean ? not one.” This is a proverbial expression, signifying that nothing can be more perfect than its original ; but Job is not speaking in this place of the guilt and pollution of man, but of his sorrows and mortality.
Psalm li. 5. “Behold I was shapen in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.” This also has :very much the air of a proverbial expression, signify. ing great depravily of heart, and very early habits of vice. That it was not intended to express a natural and invincible. propensity to vice, is plain, because that would be inconsistent with the tenor of the whole psalm, in which the humble author seems disposed to aggravate rather than, to extenuate his offences, to which this last-mentioned consideration would have greatly contributed. Rom. v. 12, 13, 14. “Wherefore, as by one
man siz enterezi icts the world, and death by sin ;
Ithat a czati ad impartial reader will observe,
was giren. - Nevertiti D L regte ist 19 Moses, even over time. 1.a Lai Dui sinilit ihe similitude of Alam, valsgebrui.," 1€ ing the forbidden fruning Of vanaimę ant po of life given to them. T'i jau LitL Libe Bed against ? Minis: eviuenir, tut aw os Tienda ness which Gui trac vititzel OL their Iska sanction of stuck they wert eist we approche (as the apostit spras On Genuti il. Ettet 39. of ihis episit.,, " NIK ALUN . Lai just statt God, (ibat toes LILI. LVIULUI' bhai. tabi ait wur: of death,) no VI S liat calls, ww. idart picadur