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manifestly imbibed the same spirit. Indeed I may add, what no one who has studied this subject can have overlooked, that the Gospel, being designed for a world as it is—a world in which the great majority of its inhabitants are ignorant and uninstructed, has been formed for the very purpose of meeting this case. It is a revelation to the benighted and the lowly. It teaches the sublimest truths in such a manner that babes may understand them, and inculcates the simplest with such a heavenly elevation and pathos, that minds of the largest compass and the profoundest thought are instructed and delighted. 4. The Gospel counteracts sin in every possible condition. Sin is the source of all the other evils which prevail under the government of God; and the object of the coming of Christ, and the introduction and propagation of the Gospel, is the extermination of this great evil from our world. The Bible describes its nature, and tells us of its present and future consequences. It holds up, in the sun-light of eternal truth, its malignant features, and, for an illustration of its fruits, points us to a bleeding earth and a burning hell. The introduction of this evil into our world was the work of Satan; and “for this purpose the Son of God was manifested that he might destroy the works of the

devil.” No other system of morals or religion has made an attack upon sin as such. Some particular sins have been denounced, and to a certain extent, no doubt, counteracted by their practical influence; but it was reserved for the Gospel alone to proclaim war against every sin, great and small. It spares no man; it has no protecting shield for the transgressor. It has no mantle of charity to inwrap the sinner, and thus cover up his true character as the enemy of God. It lays the axe “at the root of the trees,” and hews down the tall cedar as well as the withered bramble. It condemns the sinning monarch in terms as unsparing and uncompromising as it does the sinning beggar. For the city and the country, for the refined and the ignoble, for christian and for pagan lands, there is but one law—“Without holiness no man shall see the Lord.” It has no respect to age, station, learning, country, kindred, sex, family, or profession in life, but bears testimony against all who love and practise sin. But the Gospel does something more than describe the nature of sin, and point out the present and future woes which hang around a wicked heart and life. It proposes a remedy. It would relieve our sinful and suffering world from its accumulated evils by striking a death-blow at the very root of all mischief. The Gospel is a scheme contrived of God and revealed from heaven for the removal of sin. It undertakes to make men happy only by this process. It provides for the pardon

of sin through the blood of the atonement; and by the instrumentality of truth, and the agency of the Spirit, carries on, in the heart of the penitent and believing sinner, a work of progressive sanctification, which will be rendered perfect and triumphant in heaven. And unless this effect can be produced, of what use is any scheme of religion for such a world as this? A man may pass through a thousand changes, and till he pass from death to life, from sin to holiness, he wears his chains, and is on the way to execution. The great curse is still on him, and he must be miserable. Sin is uncancelled, and he cannot be happy. Of what avail are the stripes and lacerations which are self-inflicted by the poor pagan; or the austerities and penance of the Romanist; or the fine speculations of the unitarian or the deist on the beauty of virtue and the benevolence of God, while no radical change is effected in the character P Man is every where a sinner; and in all these human schemes and devices there is no provision for the removal of this fundamental evil. No system of religion, whatever name it may wear, whether christian or pagan, can supply the moral demands of such a world as ours, unless it commence with sin. Spare this and you ruin the world. Leave this unprovided for, and you shut forever the gate of heaven. Omit this single item, and you open wide the door of perdition. Strike out from your scheme the provision for pardon and the power of sanctification, and you have a religion which can never become universal, and would be of no use were it to become universal, for it would bring no relief to a sinful world. But such is not the Gospel of the Son of God. 5. The Gospel is not dependent on any system of human philosophy. The Bible teaches “as one having authority, and not as the scribes.” In narrating facts, it records them as they are, and in their proper relations; in the revelation of doctrines, it presents them as fundamental truths which are to be accredited, and makes no explanations of the former, and enters into no reasonings respecting the latter. It discloses facts and principles of which all men, or the generality of men were before ignorant, or in which, at least, they were but imperfectly instructed ; and there it leaves them. And there these truths stand stereotyped forever, without change of form or feature. The Gospel borrows nothing from the reigning philosophy, sor it has nothing to decorate that it may attract the eyes of men; nothing to render palatable by courting the popular taste; nothing to explain, nothing to reconcile. From the commencement to the close of its communications to our world, though these extend through more than fifteen centuries, and were furnished by a large number of sacred penmen, it never loses sight of one fixed purpose, and that is to tell men what truth is. And when this is done, its work is finished. It never comments or philosophises upon its own production. Hence the Bible, like its Author, has a kind of ubiquity, and can live every where; and, like him, it has a perpetuity of existence, and is the same in every age. Systems of human philosophy may rise and fall, and yet Bible truth flows on in a steady and majestic stream, and not its surface is rippled by the change. In the interpretation of revealed truth, and in the construction of human creeds and symbols, as well as in all the systems of false religion, the philosophy of the age, both intellectual and moral, and perhaps I might add in some cases, natural philosophy too, has exerted a very perceptible influence. This is what we might expect. If men construct a religion, it must be of course a human religion, and it will partake of human thoughts and qualities. Men cannot beget angels. We can hardly look upon one of these earthly productions without being able to detect its parentage; and to tell the age and country of its birth. The same is the case, to some extent, of all human symbols of the true religion. The creeds and commentaries of each particular age and nation embody much which belongs to that age and nation. Indeed, we cannot expect it should be otherwise; for they are the productions of men, and fathers generally live a second life in their children. But the Bible occupies an independent

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