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While the earth remaineth, seed time and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night, shall not cease.
AS sin entered into the world, alid death by siiij and so the sentence of death passed upon all men in the first man, in whom all have sinned; so the Holy Ghost is pleased to set before us the fruits and most avVful effects of it.
He tells us, Gen. v. 3. that " Adam lived an hundred years, and begat a son in his own likeness, after his image, and called his name Seth." Sinful Adam could convey hO Other image than his own; "That which is born of the flesh is flesh," altogether carnal and corrupt; so that we see from hence, that the fountain from which all mankind were to derive their nature being cor* rupt, and this being conveyed through the chan*nel of generation, by which every one was to receive his own distinct personality, they all must* as the consequence of it, be perfectly and totally corrupted and defiled with all the guilt of original sin; and also have inherently in their nature conveyed to them, a privation of all good, and a positive inclination to all evil; so that V there is none righteous, no not one." As Christ, the seed of the woman, was the foundation of the church, and the object of faith and hope, from the first revelation of him in the garden of Eden; and as the supernatural exhibition of thecherubim and flaming sword was the antediluvian gospel and place of worship, so the Holy Ghost is pleased to give us an account of ten generations from the creation to the flood, and of ten antediluvian patriarchs, who were believers on the Son of God; to whom his person, name, future incarnation and salvation, were precious. Two of these persons divided the whole of that space of time which ran out from the creation to the destruction of the world by the flood, viz. Adam and Methuselah; the one the first man, the other the oldest man that ever was in the world. The former lived to see Lamech, the ninth generation, and died aged nine hundred and thirty years: he was the first of all the patriarchs who was removed to heaven. Methuselah lived to the very month ill which the flood began, and died nine hundred and sixty-nine years old. Between the death of Adam and Methuselah, it pleased the Lord to translate Enoch to glory without his seeing or tasting death. This was next after Adam's death, when he had lived on earth as many years as there are days in the year, and finished his course like a sun on earth; seven patriarchs remaining to be witnesses of it: and as Adam's death preached mortality, so Enoch's translation taught immortality. The names of these patriarchs were vastly significant, Adam, was the common name of the first man and woman, and of their posterity given by the Lord himself, see Gen. v. 2. to shew that he hath made of one blood all men, and all nations of men. Seth, born in original sin, was regenerated and made an holy man by the eternal Spirit of God, and his name signifies, put or placed for a foundation, to point out the necessity of building on Christ for salvation.
Enos, in whose days religion was corrupted by idolatry, which, as it began at his birth, his name signifies sorrowful; to point it out as matter of sorrow to the godly in that age.
Cainan, signifies mourner; he and others mourned for the corruption of the times.
Mahalaleel, signifies a praiser of the Lord.
Jared, which signifies descending, implies that the world was descending from bad to worse.
Enoch, signifies dedicated to God. He was the seventh generation from Adam; and he pro* phesied, says Dr. Lightfoot, of the wickedness that Lamech, the seventh from Adam in Cain's line, had brought in, and the judgments of God, which would be brought on the world for it and other crimes.
Methuselah, signifies, they die by a dart; or, he dieth, and then is the dart; or, he dieth, and then it is sent.
Lamech, signifies a man smitten with grief, on account of the corruption of all flesh, and the future punishment which would most certainly come upon them for it.
Noah, signifies a comforter, or rest.
The translation of Enoch, in the year of the world from the creation, 1042, was a pledge to the faithful in that age, of their resurrection from the grave of death to life eternal; and a most comfortable evidence and assurance to them of a glorious and blessed immortality. The space of time from the creation to the flood was one thousand, six hundred, and fifty-six years.
The subject which I have before me concerning the dissolution of the old world, and its reformation, which includes with, and in it, the favor shewn to Noah, and the blessing pronounced on him after he came forth out of the ark, in which his descendants were interested, as well as himself, must, for the clear statement of it, be subdivided; and when this is properly arranged and digested into distinct particulars, a way will be opened to give an account of his sacrifice, offered at his coming out of the ark, and proof will be given that it was a memorial of the sacrifice of Jesus.
That my text may not be forgotten, I will here recite it:
"And Noah builded an altar unto the Lord, and took of every clean beast, and of every clean fowl, and offered burnt-offerings on the altar. And the Lord smelled a sweet savor; and the Lord said in his heart, 1 will not again curse the ground any more for man's sake; for the imagination of man's heart is evil from his youth; neither will I again smite any more every living thing as I have done; while the earth remaineth, seed time and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night, shall not cease."
As an introduction to my text, I will consider, in a brief manner, the dissolution of the old world by the waters of a flood, and give some general account of the moral and physical causes thereof, and likewise of its renovation. This 1 will set before you in distinct sections, as the Lord shall be pleased to enable me.
I will then proceed to set forth the distinguishing blessing shewn to Noah and his sons, with his grateful sense of it, and the way in which he expressed it. This will bring me to my text, in which we shall see the new world beginning with a solemn exhibition of Christ's death, as the sacrifice of atonement, and Jehovah bearing a divine testimony of its being remembered by him with unspeakable delight; " the Lord smelled a sweet savor." I will cast this also into sections, that it may be more clearly understood: and may the Lord shine upon and add his blessing to the whole. Even so, blessed Jesus, Amen.
Let me first, by way of introduction to the following sections, observe, that the fifth chapter of Genesis gives us the exact chronology from