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the Antient Platonists so ill an Opinioni of the Body, that they were wont to call it the Clog, the Cage, the Prison of the Soul, So that were it still to remain the same gross Unweildy Body, full of Faintness and Weakness and Weariness, full of Disorders and Troubles, the Soul being once got free from it, would defire always to keep itself so, and never return again to its Prison, any more to be Clog’d with the Burden of the Flesh.
But it shall be Raised (in Power, Active and Impassible, in full Strength, and in a Constant State of Health and Vigour, without Weakness or Weariness or Decay, fit to Minister before the Lord with the Blessed Spirits above; as faith the Evangelical Prophet Isaiah, prophesying of the Heavenly Kingdom of Christ, Ch. xl. 31, They that wait upon
the Lord shall renew their Strength; They sball mount up with Wings as Eagles ; They Noall ran and not be Weary, and they fall Walk and not be Faint. Then shall the Body, at once for ever, be Cur'd of all
its Old Pains and Infirmities, and free'd Rev, vii, from all the Evils and Miseries of this
Mortal Life; according to the Description St. John has given of the Blessed State of the Saints in Heaven They foall Hunger no more, neither Thirst any more, peither shall the Sun light on them,
nor any Heat; For the Lamb which is in
4thly. It is Sown a Natural, it is Raised a Spiritual Body ; Not a Spirit, but a Body Spiritualized. And Spirituality I think does imply and include all the forementioned Qualifications of a Body prepar'd for Heaven by the Resurrection; for a Spiritual Body must be Incorruptible and Immortal, Bright and Glorious, Subtle and Active and Free from Wants and Infirmities; Therefore when the Apostle fuperadds to all these, that the Body shall be Railed a Spiritual Body, he must have some farther particular Meaning in it; which seems to be This: Whilst we live in this Our Natural Body, that is subject unto Sin, we have a Law in our Members warring against the Law of our Minds, a Constant Conflict betwixt the Flesh and the Spirit, the Spirit lufting against the Flesh, and Gab v.17. the Flesh against the Spirit; and these, (faith the Apostle) are contrary One to. the Other; so that ye cannot do the things
that ye would: This requires a Man to be here always upon his Guard ; to Watch and Fight and Fast and Pray; and will keep the Pious Chriftian in anxious Employment all his Days. But at the Resurrection, the Body shall be Raised a Spiritual Body; There shall No longer be any Struggle betwixt the Flesh and the Spirit ; but the Body shall be wholly acted and governed by a Spiritual Principle ; It shall have na irregular Appetites or Passions to vex the Soul withal; but being perfectly subdued to the Spirit, shall obey it in all its. Godly Motions ; and in unanimous Fellowship with it, become a Regular Joyful Joint-Instrument in the Praise and Glory of God for ever and ever.
This is a Short Account, but I think all that the Scriptures have given us, of the Change that our Bodies shalí
undergo at the Resurrection : Which I 1. xiii. fhall Conclude with That of St. Austin,
(in his excellent Books de Giv. Deiz) Man fball not then be Earthly but Heavenly ; Not that the Body which was formed of Earth fball not remain the Same; but that by the gift of Heaven it. soall then be made such, as may be fit to become an Inhabitant of Heaven, by the Change of its Qualities, not by the loss of its Nature.
I have now done with the Doctrinal Part, which has run out to a much greater Length than I at first design'd; and therefore I must be more Brief in the Practical, to which I now proceed.
1. This Doctrine of the Resurrection may serve to convince us of our great Folly, if we will at any time or in any Case suffer ourselves to be overaw'd by any Power, or Fear of Men, to the Doing of any thing to Offend God. For what is Man: Whose Breath Il. ii. 22. is in his Nostrils, whose Life is but a Breath of Air? And even the greatest and most formidable of the Sons of Men, when God taketh away their Breath, Pf.civ.29. must also Dye, and are Turned again into their Duft.
Or what can Man do unto us, or any Child of Man? The greatest
Tyrant upon Earth, can only take away a Miserable Life in Exchange for a Happy One, which God will surely re.. store us to, and amply Reward all our Sufferings for His Sake at the Resurrection of the Juft. This that Faithful Jewefse, (in the Book of Maccabees) with her seven Sons, were so firmly perswaded 2 Mace. 7. of, that rather than break one Law of Heb. xi. God, they endur'd to be Tortur'd, (and 35. that with extremity of Tortures,) not
accepting Deliverance, that they might obtaina a Better Resurrection. The Utmost that Man can do unto us, is only to Destroy the Body, (a little before its time,) which shall be Raised again more Excellent and Glorious ; But if we will Obey Man rather than God, we shall there. by provoke Him to Wrath, who is able to destroy both Body and Soul in Hell: as our Saviour argues, Luke xii.
2dly. This Consideration of the Refurrečtion is sufficient to fortifie us against all the Terrors of Death. Death is conquer'd for us; The Sting of it is taken away: And why should we so much dread a Conquered Enemy ?
Which, when it does prevail against us, Rom. viii. can hold us but a little While; We
wait for an Adoption, to wit, the Redemp
tion of our Bodies : Then shall we be 1 Cor&sv. loosed from its bands : Death itself fall
be swallowed up in Vi&tory at the Resurrection; and We Shall Pass from Death unto Life again. God once said to the Patriarch Jacob, Fear not to go down into Egypt, for I will go with thee, and surely bring' thee up again Gen. xlvi. 3. And so does the Son of God in effect say to all the Faithful Seed of Jacob
not to go down into the Grave, for “I will be with thee, and will surely