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wiiness with our spirit, that we the creature waiteth for the mania are the children of God : and if festation of the sons of God.” children, then heirs, heirs of God The principal difficulty is, to as. and joint-heirs with Christ." By certain that, which is exegetical
the manifestation of the sons of of 6 The creature, in this, and the : God, is meant a lucid and full dis. three following verses. I have
play of christian character and en. met with nothing, in any commer. joyment. The lives of christians tary, which satisfies my mind on
do make some manifestation of the subject. With deference to & their relation to the great Jehce those, who have critically attend· vab; and they have some measure ed to the subject and given their
of the sweets of this blessed rela- opinion, I would suggest an expla; tion. At the same time, it must nation ; which appears to accord o be confessed, that, as they are with the context and other scrip
sanctified, but in part and have tures. It is, that by the creature, much remaining sin, they make is meant the new creature-one, but a slight, a very imperfect who has been, created in Christ manifestation of christian charac. Jesus upto good works, that is, ter and enjoyment. And their a true christian. The following, number has, bitherto, been com. are some of the reasons for this paratively small.
opinion. It is an event exceedingly desir 1. The connection in which, able, that Zion should be enlarg. the creature is introduced. The a. ed, and that the character of the postle had been speaking of chrissoos of God should be more dis. trans. He bad declared, tbat tinctly marked. This is the there is condemnation to event expected and waited for, them that, by their union to according to the text. In antici- Christ, through the influence of pation of it, the apostle was come the Spirit, they are made free forted and animated. Though he from sin and death-that they are suffered—and Zion suffered--and not in the flesh, but in the Spirit the world was lying in wicked--that they are debtors, through ness; yet, he looked forward and the spirit, to mortify the deeds of beheld a bright display of glory the body-that they are the sons and blessedness. Hence he obser- of God that they have the spirit ved, “I reckon, that the suffer- of adoption--that they are heirs ings of ihis present time are not of God and joint-heirs with worthy to be compared with the Christ, &c. In this connection, glory, which shall be revealed in without any intimation of a change us." In this connection, he peoned in the character the creature is the passage under consideration. mentioned. And not only, with . For the earnest expectation of out any intimation of a change is
the character, but with a clear in- perfectly accords with the chris. timation, that the sa ne character tian character.
For the crea. is continged. The apoule declarei, ture was made subject to vanity, in the verse, iinmeli viely preced- not willingly.” Paul, with mani. ing ihe passag?, “ [reckon that the lesi application to christians, in sufferings of this present time are general, said, “ For that which I not worthy to be compared with do l allow pot; for what I would the glory, which shall be revealed that do I oot, but what I bale, that in us." Then adil, " For the ear. do l.” Toe christian is subject to nest expectation of the creature, vanity, not willingly-ihat is, sin &c. The very connection would and its consequences not lead us to expect a continuation agreeable to the spiritual, the of the same character, which had rene ved mind; but are the fruits been the principal subject of the of the flesh, or the remaining chapter, an! especially, of the carnal disposition. Hence, subverse immediately preceding.– jects are applied to christians, This is the christian character ; and they are addressed, either as which more than intimates that, carnal; or, as spiritual; or, the creature and christians are partaking of both dispositions.synonymous.
What is here said of the crea2. The moral character of the ture, as relates to moral characcreature, exactly corresponds with ter, does strictly apply to christthat of the christian. The crea. ians; but, it is believed will aptare is represented, as earnestly ply to no other being in the Uniexpecting, and waiting, with in verse. tense desire, for the manifestation The description of the creature of the sons of God. That is, to in verse twenty-two is applicasee christians act in character and ble to christians. 66 The whole shine as lights in the worl]--to creature, every creature
converts multiplied, as the groaneth and travaileih in pain to drops of morning dew. And do gether until now." Christians not christians desire and expect, groan being burdened with their labour and
for the same own sins. They agonize when blessing? Do they not expect, they contemplate the sinful and that the sons of God will be more wretched state of the world.-distincily and glorious manifested, Pangs, on this account, like those in this world, than they bave ever of a travailing woman, rup through been ; and that, in the world to the whole body of Christians. come, they will be perfectly man The twenty-third verse contains ifesied ?
a striking confirmation of our The description, given of the opinion. “And not only they, creature in the twenty-first verse, but ourselves also, who have the
first fruits of the Spirit, even we precisely, the feelings and charourselves groan within ourselves, acter of the christian. waiting for the adoption, to wit, 3. The hope, or expectation of the redemption of our bodies.” the creature, is the same, as the The begioning of this verse, man- christian hope. Every creature ifestly, refers to those mentioned is groaning and travailing in pain, in the preceding, denominated the on account of sin ; but, at the whole creation, or every creature. same time, he earnesily expects The only distinction between and waits for deliverance. This those, and these mentioned in the is the case with christians. In verse before us, is, that the latter view of this subject, Paul exclaims, have the first fruits of the Spirit. “O wretched man that I The first fruits are esteemed the shall deliver me from the body of best. Hence God, under the this death ? I thank God through former dispensation, required, that Jesus Christ our Lord.” In the the first fruits should be consecra- context it is stated, “We are ted to him. The first fruits of the saved by hope ; but hope that is Spirit evidently mean
seen is not hope ; for what a man gracious infuence, or a larger seeth why doth he yet hope for? measure of it, than was bestowed But if we hope for that, we see in ordinary cases. In this sense, not, then do we with patience Paul, and other apostles and wait for it.” True believers teachers were favoured with the have actually experienced a first fruits at the Spirit; while a great change in their moral smaller measure was granted to temper—and they have the earchristians in general. It is cer- nest of everlasting holiness and tainly more than iutimated in the joy; but, so scanty is their meascomparison, which Paul makes ure of holy love, and so frequent between the creatures and himself its interruptions, that they rather and others ! that while the latter live on hope than actual fruition. had the first fruits—the former And not only is the hope of the had the fruits of the Spirit. And creature, with respect to himself, this opinion is further confirmed, identified with that of the chriswhen we find the apostles and tian; but it is also the same, with others, on whom the Spirit was respect to Zion at large and the profusely shed, bearing a sympa. world of mankind. There is the thizing part with the creatures in same earnest expectation and bemoaning the sin, vanity and patient waiting for the accomwretchedness, which prevailed. plishment of all God's gracious Thus, the moral feelings and promises. character of the creature are, 4. No promise has been made,
or can be made to the christian,
more encouraging and animating, Squire, who addressed him as folthan is made to the creature. lows : 66 Because, the creature itself “Well, neighbour, as you are shall be delivered from the hon. a man of considerable reading, I dage of corruption into the glori- presume you have read Irving's ous liberty of the children of God.” Orations ; and I want you to tell What cao the creature desire ?
me why we have no such writers wbat can he have more? Will on these shores of the Atlantic ?he be freed from the thraldom of Have you ever met with such a sin--the bondage of corruption-- master work in the new world? will he have the perfect, the Farmer. True, I have given the glorious liberty of God's children? Orations a reading, but bave hardthen he will be an heir of God - ly been able to form an opinion of an heir with Christ-he will be them. Nor cap I give a satisfacglorified with that Saviour in tory reason, perhaps, why we whose cause he has suffered. have not such writers among us. Richer blessings are, surely, no I have such an awkward faculty where promised to the people of of putting ideas into language, or God, than those, which are here else have no ideas, that I should promised to the creature. And be a poor hand to criticise on such they are, in fact, precisely the works. same blessings.
Esquire. But do you not admire Is the creature introduced in them? Has he not swept away
all connexion with christians, as the technical language of theology, being of the same fraternity--is which so effectually hampers the the moral character, ascribed to pulpit orator, and placed the subthe creature, the christian charac- ject of theology before us in a ter--is he earnestly hoping for most interesting dress; so that, the same glorious things, for however much complaint there has which christians hope, and has he been about the opposition of sinthe same exceeding great and
ners to preaching, no heart can precious promises, which chris- now fail to admire and love what tians hare? Then, christians, and he proposes ? none but christians can be exeget F. I acknowledge that he is ical of the term creature, in this somewhat a singular genius; such passage.
as I should think would raise admiration in most audiences. But you must not expect that we farm.
ers can be easily touched with what IRVING'S ORATIONS.
you might denominate the flowers A plain Farmer was the other of rhetoric. I once took some day met in a bar-room by a young pleasure in passing through a flow.
er garden ; but as I advance in skiil of the musician. No doubt, years, I find, that in my pursuit Mr. Irving has a zeal which is for real fruit, or valuable vegeta- laudable; and be cannot be accusbles, I tread flowers under my feet ed of inactivity in the pursuit of with indifference. Mr. Irving has his object.
Mr. Irving has his object. But, whatever may swept away some technical terms be his age, he must be a young from his theology, but bas intro- man. He has the judgment of an duced others from law, physic, as- ambitious youth, or I am much tronomy, botany, and the whole deceived; and will substantially field of science, to me bardly in. fail of bis end, or I am no prophtelligible, though I always thought et. I had a pretty good idea of theolog E. A prophet I will never acical language as used in the scrip- koowledge you, por a man of taste tures and the writings of our best if you mean to insinuate that Irdivines. But this champion affects ving is wanting in taste..
Dear to despise it all, and suggests to Sir, I think you must be mistaken us that the reason why christianity in your views of the man. How has been received by so few, is did you acquire so strong prejuthat it has unfortunately been pre. dices against such a beautiful wriserved in a dress too stiff and ter? Was it from his theology, his systematical, to please the better peculiar septiments, or where is feelings of mankind. He declaims the cause of such an unfriendly unsparingly against the wholecom- judgment ? pany of divines, reformers, and F. I acknowledge that my taste pulpit orators which the world does not agree with Mr. Irving's has produced; and gives us a hint and yours ; but I am not conthat we may expect from his pen scious of any prejudices which an entire reform. Now I have were not excited by a patient read his Orations, and his argy. reading of the work. As to his ment for the Judgment; and you theology, I have less objection to ask me, if I do not admire them. the kind than the degree of it.-I cannot tell. I seemed to admire I do not find much theology in the something every page I read; volume. After reading his Orabut what it was I could scarcelv tions for the Oracles of God, conceive. Nor could I say which I acknowledge that my feelit was, admiration, astonishment, ings of their importance were inor contempt, or a compound, that creased. And the truth of a rightI felt. I concluded finally that coug judgment, I should have the “ vox, et preterea nihil," as questioned, had my faith waited $0 wonderfully arranged, that my for the support which Mr. Irving feelings bad for their exciting proposed to afford.
afford. I do not say cause, as our Doctor says, the that he is not a good advocate,