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and a reasonable service; and consequently, to the answering the great end and purpose of their creation. And when a revelation is fo constituted, and suited to answer the purposes aforesaid to mankind; then, surely, it must be allowed to be of the greatest use and benefit to them under the forementioned circumstances, supposing reason to be a sufficient guide in matters of religion. And if reason, when carefully attended to and followed, is a sufficient guide in matters of religion (which most certainly ought to be the cale) then every man has the divine law written upon his heart, which is as much obliging and binding upon his conscience, as any law written upon paper, or tables of stone can be. Again,

If it should be farther urged, that as the divine law is broken by our transgressions; so the divine juftice must be satisfied, before the finner can be acquitted: and as the divine justice was fatisfied by the sufferings and death of Chrift, (and thereby the divine law was secured from contempt, and God's indignation was shewn against sin, and likewise sin was discouraged) fo faith in Christ is required, as a prerequisite to our being sharers in the benefits of his death; and that reason is altogether uncapable of discovering these Points.

I answer ; that reason cannot possibly make such discoveries, is readily granted; because reason cannot be supposed capable

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of discovering such points as are repugnant to it self, which is the present cale. Surely nothing can be more repugnant to reason, than that God should remove his difpleasure from one person that is guilty, by the fufferings of another that is innocent; becaule this would be to punish the innocent, that thereby he may take occasion to let the guilty go free; than which nothing can be more unequal or unreasonable. And to say, that the person who suffered, voluntarily undertook to bear that burden, does not alter the case at all; because it makes no real alteration neither in the sufferer, nor in the finner : that is, neither of them is more or less guilty or innocent upon that account. And as it is fin (which is personal, and which cannot be transferred from one to another) which renders the finner the proper object of God's displeasure; so the finner must and will continue to be the proper object of difpleasure, till his person is so changed, (which is done by repentance and amendinent of life) as renders him perfonally the proper object of God's mercy. And when the finner is thus personally changed, as that he becomes the proper obječt of God's mercy hereby, then it is that personal change in him, and that only, and not any thing which is done or luffered in and by the person of another, which can, in reason, be the ground of God's mercy and forgiveness to him. And,

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To say, that divine juftice must be fatisa fied before the finner can be acquitted, is to render the case yet worse; because then there can be no room, nor place for God's mercy to be exercised at all. For justice, in the present case, consists in two points, viz. first, in punishing the offender, and him only; and, secondly, in proportioning the punishment to the demerit of the crime, and to depart from these, of either of them, is to depart from justice. So that if divine justice must be satisfied, before the finner can be acquitted, then the finner must not only suffer in his own person, but he must fo füffer, as that his sufferings bear an exact proportion to the demerit of his crimes; and when he has done fo, there can be no place for the exercise of God's mercy, because it will be the finner's right, who thus luffers, to be discharged without it. And

As to the suffering's and death of Christ, when considered as evils laid on an innocent person, these may call for justice to be executed, in punishing his Afflictors; but they cannot possibly fatisfy justice for the faults of others : because justice requires that the line ner, and he only, should suffer, or be punished for fin, as I observed above. For as transgression is the only just ground or reason of punishment; so to punish the innocent, is to punish without any just ground or reason for it ; which is manifestly unreasonable and unjuft. And to consider one unjust action, as

a fatisfaction to justice for another, is very ablurd. And,

Such a procedure, is so far from securing the law from contempt, that on the contrary it renders both the law and the lawgiver contemptible. For as the justice and equity of the law consists in punishing the tranigressor of that law, and the transgressor only, and in proportioning the punishment to the demerit of the crine; 1o to punith the innocent in the place of the guilty, and to let the guilty go free, is contrary to justice and equity; and confequently it renders both the law and the lawgiver contemptible. One great end of all law and punishment is to secure obedience to the law; but if the natural order of things is thus perverted, by treating the innocent as guilty, and the guilty as innocent, then obedience is left unguarded and insecured, and law and punishment become only stalking-hories to the passion, and refentment of the lawgiver. And,

As to fin, when it is considered abfraft. edly from the finner, it is a mere empty abstracted notion, and as such cannot be the object either of favour or displeasure: so that when God is said to be displeased with or fhew his indignation against sin, it is not sin when considered abstractedly, but it is the sinner, or the person who is guilty of fil, who is the object of that displeasure. And it is exceeding absurd to suppose, that God's indignation can be shewn against fin

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ut then obedien and the quiltating the

eners, by his excusing the guilty from punishment, and by his afflicting and punishing a person that is innocent in their stead; becaule the action itlelf, naturally and necessarily thews the contrary. That is, it shews (if it shews any thing) God's dislike of the innocent, and his approbation of the guilty. And such a conduct is to far from discouraging, that on the contrary, it is rather an encouragement to fin; seeing, upon the present supposition, it seems to be a matter of indifferency to God, (so he does but punish) whether he punishes the guilty or the innocent ; or rather in the present case, the greatest mark of respect, is shewn to the tranfgreffors of God's laws; because he punishes the innocent, and lets the guilty go free. And,

Tho' faith be considered as necessary to render men sharers in the benefits of Christ's divine Mission, as it leads them to repentance and amendment of life (which misfion. he lost his life in maintaining, and so by a. figure of speech; men are said to be sharers in the benefits of Christ's death, when they are sharers in the benefits of that divine mission, which he laid down his life to maintain,) yet it is not their believing, when considered barely as an act of the under. ftanding, but it is what that faith is introductive to, viz. their repenting and turning to God, and bringing forth fruits meet for repentance, which is the true ground and

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reason

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