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you behold a dead corpse, think what a murderer sin is : for that body would never have died, if sin had not poisoned it. And then turn your eyes inwards, and let each man say to himself—this beloved body of mine, upon which I spend so much time and.care, was made mortal by sin, and all the pains and diseases which I can suffer came from the same cursed cause; yea, from it came all the miseries which I deserve to suffer with devils and condemned spirits in the fire that never is to be quenched; and shall I love and delight to serve such an enemy? shall I give up the members of my body as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin, and so work out mine own everlasting destruction ? God forbid! As sin is the author of all the evil which I do, or can endure, I will therefore fight against it, and may the Lord God save me from the guilt and deliver me from the dominion of it!
This is the language of every heart which is made sensible of the poisonous nature of sin. When the awakened sinner feels the malignant venom working in his constitution, he will be led to abhor and to de test it, and the more so when the scripture discovers to him the execrable foe who poisoned him with sin, and that was the old serpent. What these serpents are said, in the seventeenth verse, to have done to the body, in poisoning it, the same did he both to body and soul; and as he did it at first in the serpent, he has therefore been known and distinguished by this name, from the time that he deceived our first parents in the subtle serpent. The apostle has given us a very alarming description of him, Rev. xii. 9, where he is treating of the war which was in heaven between Michael and his angels, and the dragon and his angels." And the great dragon," he says, “was cast out, the old serpent, called the devil, and Satan, who deceiveth the whole world.” Here he is called the serpent, alluding to his crafty wiliness, and the old ser. pent, to denote his having employed all his wiles to deceive and ruin mankind. As soon as they were created he plotted their destruction, and he became
Satan, their sworn adversary, and the devil, their accuser, who sought to destroy their precious lives with the rage of a dragon-yea, with more rage than common dragons have, even with the burning fury of the great dragon. And, alas ! he was successful for he deceiveth
the whole world. He poisoned the whole human race; he corrupted all flesh, and we are now groaning under the dreadful effects of our total corruption. The cursed venom of sin, which he infused into our bodies, still works in them; but its more cursed venom still works, though less perceptibly, in our souls.
The poison keeps working in the body, until it bring on sickness and death, and reduce us to the dust, from whence we were taken; and it keeps working in the soul in every hateful and unholy temper, which tends to stir up the wrath and indignation of God, and to separate the soul for ever and ever from him, the fountain of life and glory.
This is the great and universal malady referred to ja the text, the malady of sin, with which the old serpent, the devil, has poisoned the whole world. When he deceived our first parents he then poisoned the fountain, and all the streams which have been ever since flowing from it partake of the direful in. fection: for the word of truth declares, “that, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin, so death passed upon all men, in whom all have sinned.” Here the entrance of sin is said to be the cause of the entrance of death, and we all die in Adam, therefore we all sinned in hin: for the wages of sin is death. Now God being infinitely just and righteous, would not pay the wages, unless there was some sin to deserve them; but infants receive the wa. ges of sin, consequently they are sinners; they die in Adam, because in bim they have sinned: “for by the offence of one, judgment came upon all men to condemnation.” Thus was our whole nature, both body and soul, corrupted by the fall, and there is not a sound part or faculty in either of them. They are corrupt and abominable altogether, and in nothing
has merit and efficacy to save him from his base ingratitude, as well as from his other sins. He will look upon every one of our Lord's wounds as a fountain opened for the purifying of sin and uncleanness; for every sin is of a polluting nature, and wants cleansing. Nothing can be so loathsome in the eyes of an hely God as sin. A leper covered over with sores and ulcers is not more offensive in our sight than be that is defled with the leprosy of sin is in the sight of God. He is not only of purer eyes than to behold it, but he also rejects the sinner for it, as filthy and abominable altogether: and he will be rejected for ever, unless he be convinced of the defiling nature of sia and desire to be cleansed from its pollution. When these desires come from the Holy Spirit, he Bengthen them, until the sinner, being justified
to of Christ, be made clean and righteous 2...peder. But this point comes more particularly turated ot in the
Tipices under the consideration of the won. innrerty of the fountain mentioned in the text
- cleanse and take away the pollution of sins 43. En dye. The fountain is the blood of Jeswa lazima watch is able to cleanse from sin by the
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who stripped and departed, an was Adam, eace and rest, ppy: but he , contrary to e fell among
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does this total corruption more evidently discover itself than in their entire blindness and insensibility of their dangerous condition. They are poisoned, and yet they know it not; nay, they are so unwilling to know it, that when we inform them of it, they are highly offended. They cannot bear to be told of itno, not by the ministers of the gospel, whose office and duty it is. We are sure to stir up their rage and hatred, if we discover to them the workings of this poison in their hearts; and if we appeal to the effects of it in their lives, and refer them to the plentiful streams of iniquity which are continually flowing from the corrupt fountain of the heart, then they cannot bear us; they are like the deaf adder, that stoppeth her ear, which will not hearken to the voice of the charmers, charming never so wisely. They are resolved not to be disturbed about their sins, and therefore they will not hear of their sickness or of their danger. They had rather die of their malady than be made uneasy about it. Let sin do its worst in the next life, in the present they will enjoy it; and in sweet security too, if they can. Is not this an astonishing degree of infatuation? Is it not one of the strongest delusions of the devil, that he should make those very men insensible of their spiritual maladies, who are exquisitely sensible of the least bodily malady, whose fears are all alarmed at the thoughts of their dying to this world, but who have not the least concern about their dying from God and glory? Are any of you, my brethren, in this case? Are you easy about the state of your souls, having never been in any distress about original and actual sin? Did you never feel yourself so sick of both that you were afraid you should perish everlastingly? If not, consider what it is that keeps you in this fatal security. Are not you sinners ? for all have sinned. And has not sin poisoned both body and soul? And is not this one of the sad, stupifying effects of its poison, that while there is but a step between you and death, yet you have no concern about your being bealed ?