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Judas in betraying his Lord, or the sin lies in the deliberate and determined of the Jews in crucifying him, or the disobedience of the will—when the sin of the infidel in rejecting the in- Lord says "Thou shalt not,' and His spired testimony concerning him-be rational creature says “I will '—whecompared in atrocity with the sin of ther the controversy be respecting an Adam in eating this apple'? Trans- .apple' or a kingdom.-Scott. gression gathers its guilt from the The tree of knowledge of good and magnitude of the motives to avoid it; evil' might be any tree whatever. One and that, again, from the amount of cannot, therefore, but lament the vulgar ruin and wretchedness into which it practice of painters representing it as plunges. Who, then, can calculate the an apple-tree, which has given occaguilt contracted by Adam in his eating sion to many profane and silly wittithe forbidden fruit ?-Dr. Payne. cisms.-Dr. Kitto.
The heinousness of any sin, again,
18 And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.
This law is not, cannot be, reversed. If man had craved a helper, he had All attempts to produce a contrary grudged at the condition of his creastate have been against nature, and tion, and had questioned that which have uniformly terminated in evil. he had, perfection of being. But He Dr. Redford.
that gave him his being, and knew Man singly is but half man, at least him better than himself, thinks of givbut half human—a king without a ing him comfort in the creature, whilst kingdom.-Lavater.
he sought none but in his Maker. He And yet I do not find that man in sees our wants and forecasts our relief, innocence was sensible of the want of when we think ourselves too happy to & helper. His fruition of God gave complain. How ready will he be to him fulness of contentment; he found help our necessities, who thus provides neither leisure nor cause of complaint. for our perfection!—Bp. Hall.
19 And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air ; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof. 20 And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field ; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him.
This giving a name to the animals sessed. It is a saying of Plato that he implies a knowledge of nature, and was most wise that imposed names on an extent of verbal nomenclature, things; yea, had more than human which the most sagacious philosophers wisdom.-L. since the fall have none of them pos
2 And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof: 22 And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man. Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh : she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.
The woman was made of a rib out feet to be trampled upon by him ; of Adam's side; not made out of his but out of his side to be equal with head to top him, nor out of his him, under his arm to be protected,
23 And and near his heart to be beloved. come. E latere Christi morientis exAdam lost a rib, but in lieu thereof he titit ecclesia: The church is taken had a help-meet for him. What God out of dying Jesus' side,' as Eve out takes away from his people, He will of sleeping Adam's. Christ did not one day or other restore with advan- redeem and save poor souls by sitting tage.-M. Henry.
in majesty on His heavenly throne, but In this, too, as in many other things, by hanging on the shameful cross.Adam was a 'figure of Him that was to Gurnall.
24 Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.
The mutual inclination of the sexes river obstructed in its natural channel, for each other, when regulated by overflowing its banks, desolating the the law of God, and free from other fields, and converting the neighbouring restraints, becomes the foundation of country into a noxious marsh or bog. all the relations of life, the source of -Scott. the most rational of our earthly com- The place assigned to the woman in forts, and equally beneficial to indivi- heathen and Mahomedan countries duals, families, and nations, like a has been highly degrading; and the river which, gliding within its banks, place assigned her by modern infidels beautifies and enriches the neighbour- is not much better. Christianity is ing plains. But when unscriptural re- the only religion that conforms to the straints are imposed, or when it bursts original design, that confines a man to through the appointed bounds, it dif- one wife, and that teaches him to treat fuses vice, discord, disease, and misery her with propriety.-A. Fuller. with horrible rapidity; like the same
25 And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.
It has been shown by Dr. Pye Smith science might well have no shame in and others that the nakedness here their faces, though they had no clothes spoken of was not absolute but par- to their backs.-M. Henry. tial. In this sense the word is used If it be still hard for us to comprein John xxi. 7.-L.
hend this circumstance of the sacred Blushing is now the colour of virtue, history, it is because our judgment is and they are commonly the least apt false and vitiated since the fall, and to blush who are most vicious; but it because we have equally lost the nowas not then the colour of innocence ; tions of true shame and of true hothey that had no sin in their con- nour.-M. Saurin.
CHAP. III. OW the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden ? * And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden : ' But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye
die. Satan's policy was to enter into dis- had not been so much exposed. There course with the woman when alone.
are many temptations to which soliHad she kept close to the side out tude gives great advantage; but the of which she was lately taken, she communion of saints contributes much to their strength and safety. -M. doubt of it, he gets no ground on us. Henry.
Eve went to the outside of her liberty In time of temptation it is our wis- and set herself upon the brink of dandom and duty to keep close to the ger when she said, “ We may eat of all word which forbids the sin, and not to but one tree. When people thus dally reason with Satan as Eve did. So with the devil, they fall by temptation. long as we retain the simplicity of the To parley with temptation is to play word, we have Satan at the end of the with fire.-Bunyan. staff; for, unless we give way to a
* And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:
There is something in the confi- been told, and repeated through every dence with which, at times, asser- age, from the apostasy to the present tions are made, which has always, hour. Thousands and millions also of more or less, commanded belief in the foolish and unhappy wretches listen to ignorant and inexperienced. Nothing the tale because it is loved, and reis more common than for the most ceive it on a tenth part of the evidence false and pernicious doctrines to be which they would demand to enforce advanced with a boldness that stuns on their minds a single truth or a the minds of the simple, and induces single duty; or, rather, they receive it a doubt : Surely I must be in the first, and wait for the evidence till wrong, and they in the right, or they some future time. Eve is often cencould not be so confident.' Thus Satan sured for yielding to a tempter of teaches men first to doubt, then to finished cunning. How many of her deny; he makes them sceptics first, descendants yield to fools and block. and so by degrees makes them athe- heads, to gross and blundering solicitaists.-A. Fuller; M. Henry.
tions; unfurnished with even a plau. The soul is perpetually flattered sible pretence, or that miserable conwith the hope of safety in sin, is solation to sinners, an apology for the taught to expect exemption from pu- compliance. Let no one cast the first nishment, and is boldly informed that stone at our common parents who is 'it shall not surely die.' Thousands not conscious that he himself has not and millions of times has this story sinned in the same manner.—Dwight.
5 For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.
There is an equivocation in these eating the forbidden fruit; but nowords, a latent truth, the reverse thing could be further from Eve's of their apparent meaning. • Your thoughts than such an interpretation. eyes,' says Satan, shall be opened ;' Thus the assertions of the tempter that is, "When you have eaten the resembled the ancient heathen orafruit, you will too late see your own cles, of which, in one way or other, folly.' • Ye shall be as gods,' affect- this father of lies' was the author; ing in yourselves a sort of pre-emi- for these were generally couched in nence and independence, till you find such ambiguous language as might be death and misery seize upon you ;
afterwards accommodated to the event, • knowing good and evil,' by losing though often in direct opposition to the good, and experiencing the evil. the disappointed expectations of the Of such a paraphrase the words will deluded votaries.-Scott. admit, and such has been the effect of
6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.
We find in ourselves a strange han. transgressions committed ever since; kering after what is forbidden. Niti- nor have they been wide of the truth mur in vetitum. The poison in Eve who have laboured to prove that all soon began to take effect. Sbe paused; the ten commandments, spiritually looked at the fruit; it began to ap- expounded, were at once violated. pear delightful ; she felt a wish to be Scott. wise ; in short, she took of the fruit, How dear bath this lesson cost us, and did eat. Sin is a speedy gradu- that in some cases it is better to be igate, quickly passing from one sense to norant! and yet do the sons of Eve inanother, from one faculty to another, herit this saucy appetite of their grandand the devil drives it on, like Jebu, mother. How many thousand souls at & furious pace. (2 Kings ix. 20.)— miscarry with the presumptuous affeoA. Fuller ; Caryl.
tation of forbidden knowledge ! 0 Considering this offence in all its God, Thou hast revealed more than we circumstances, and with all its aggra- can know, enough to make us happy. vations, we must term it the prolific Teach me a sober knowledge and a parent and grand exemplar of all the contented ignorance.—Bp. Hall.
? And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons.
The leaves of the Indian fig-tree are represents the fruitless pains and not only extremely large, but smooth worthless expedients which men emand flexible, and also sufficiently coarse ploy to conceal their real character, and tough for the purpose of making and to hide their sins from each other even aprons, umbrellas, and bed-co- and from themselves. For all men verings.-Anon.
are naturally more ashamed of being This vain attempt to cover them- detected in sin than of committing it. selves by fig-leaves plaited together -Scott.
8 And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the
presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden. When God came to reckon with is the season for reflection. We may Adam, . He walked;' He did not run sin in the day-time, but God will call apon him, with sword in hand, as a us to account at night. Many a 'one mighty man, with an eagerness to de- has done that in the heat and bustle of stroy him; teaching us, when we are the day which has afforded bitter reever so provoked, not to be hot or flection in the cool of the evening; hasty. He came, too, in the cool of the and such, in many instances, has day; a time when men, tired in the proved the evening of life.-M. Henry; day, are unwilling to engage in a hard A. Fuller. employment. The cool of the day'
. And the LORD God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou? God is still thus interrogating sin- ing in the
footsteps of his first guilty tal men. Sinner, where art thou ?' parent! Beware of every place, every what is thy condition ? in what way pleasure, every employment, in which art thou walking, and whither will it you would not hear such words with lead thee? Most fearful inquiry to pain.-Rev. H. Blunt. every descendant of Adam who is walk
19 And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself. 11 And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked ? Hast thou eaten of the tree whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat ?
V. 11. •Hast thou eaten,' &c. The say to the Christian, eaten of the deaccent lies in thou. It was not surely vil's dainties, who hast a key to go to from hunger; thou hadst a whole pa- my cupboard ? Does thy heavenly radise before thee. Hast thou eaten Father keep so starved a house that that wert provided so well to have the devil's scraps will go down with withstood him? Hast thou, may God thee?-Gurnall.
12 And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat. 18 And the LORD God said unto the woman, What is this that thou hast done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.
There is a strange proneness in It is worthy of notice that God makes those that are tempted to say they are no answer to these perverse excuses.
tempted of God, as if our abusing They were unworthy of an answer. of God's gifts would excuse our vio- The Lord proceeds like an aggrieved lation of God's laws. But if we make friend, who would not multiply words, our circumstances an occasion of sin. -I see how it is ; stand aside! ning against Him, instead of blaming • The serpent beguiled me.' Still God Providence for putting us into such a continues his forbearance; makes no condition we ought to blame ourselves answer, but orders her, as it were, to for perverting its gracious designs.- stand aside.-d. Fuller. M. Henry.
14 And the LORD God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life:
The devil's instruments must share the soul, the principal agent. Learn the devil's punishments. Thus the here how God hates sin, and how much bodies of the wicked, agh only the. He is displeased with those that eninstruments of unrighteousness, shall tice others to sin.-M. Henry. partake of everlasting torments with
15 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.
This is true in a literal sense. There Captain of salvation. He, that emi. is an irreconcilable enmity between nent Person, shall bruise his heel; He mankind and serpents. But Adam shall receive some slight hurt in the and Eve undoubtedly knew that it contest, which may refer to the sufferwas an intelligent spirit that had se- ings which the Messiah endured for duced them, and that this sentence our salvation. No wound is so fatal was addressed to such a being. God to a serpent as a wound in the head, designed to comfort the delinquents and nowhere is the bite of a serpent under the grief and dejection in which so harmless as in the heel.-Orton. He saw them involved, and there- The classical reader cannot here fail fore gives them this promise. • Thy to recall to memory Achilles, the bravseed and her seed' may mean, as est of the Greeks, who is said to have some think, the righteous and the been plunged by his mother into the wicked; or, which sense I much pre- Styx, and thereby rendered invulnerafer, the Lord Jesus Christ, the great ble in every part of his body except