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the heel by which she held him; and peared but a little spring in Adam's here, it is said, he received his death- time, whose whole Bible was bound up wound. Thus the Captain of our sal- in a single promise; this increased to vation consented to become mortal, a rivulet in Abraham's time; and this and a sufferer, that He might thereby rivulet enlarged itself into a river in bring many sons unto glory.'-L. the days of the prophets. But when
The gospel is a rich piece of arras, Christ came in the flesh, then knowrolled up. This God hath been unfold- ledge flowed in amain; the least under ing ever since the first promise was the gospel dispensation is said to be here made to Adam, opening it still greater than the greatest before Christ every age wider than before; but the appeared; so that, in comparison of world shall sooner be at an end than the darker times of the law, the know. this mystery be fully known. Indeed, ledge Christians now have is great; as a river grows broader as it ap- but, compared with the knowledge they proaches nearer the sea, so the know- shall have in heaven, it is little.ledge of this mystery spreadeth every Gurnall. age more and more.
The gospel ap18 Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.
This punishment, Mr. Locke ob- to supervening grace, it is a monstrous serves, is sufficiently fulfilled upon the production. Any such production is sex, as no females, it is asserted, ex- a monstrous thing. A reasonable, inperience so much sorrow and anguish telligent creature, produced into beduring the time of conception and par- ing with a radical enmity against the turition as the human species.-L. Supreme Good, the Fountain of all
It may be well for us to reflect how excellency and perfection! That such reasonable and righteous it is, that the sickness, such pangs, such agonies, conceptions and births of human crea- should constantly attend human contures should ordinarily be attended, ception and birth; we are not to repine from age to age, with such dolours as at it as if it were an unreasonable, an we find they are. For it ought to be unrighteous thing; but we are to conconsidered what the productions are.
sider the reason of this and that. God What is the production when a human will have a continual memorandum creature is brought forth into this kept up for the putting us in mind world? Why, a thing shapen in ini. from age to age, what the nature is quity and conceived in sin; and, ab- that is descending and running down stractly considered, and antecedently in this world from age to age.—Howe.
17 And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it, cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life;
Thus men's frivolous pleas will, in and made the ground of their senthe day of God's judgment, not only tence. (Luke xix. 22.)—M. Henry. be overruled but turned against them,
18 Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field; 19 In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken : for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.
V. 19. The earth is thy mother that ing and ignorance, refinement and vulbrought thee forth when thou wast not; garity, will lie down together. But we a stage that carries thee whilst thou are not yet at the end of the progress. art; a tomb that receives thee when The next stage in our humiliation is, thou art no more. It gives thee origi- to be changed into dust. This was our nal, a harbour, and a sepulchre. Like origin; this is our end. a kind mother, she bears her offspring
clods on which we tread were once, on her back; and her brood is her per- not improbably, parts, to a greater or petual burden, till she receive them lesser extent, of living beings like again into the same womb from whence ourselves. Not a small part of the she delivered them. She shall do thee surface of this world has, in all probar a still greater kindness, if her baseness bility, been animated and inhabited can teach thee humility, and keep thee by human minds; and the remains of from being more proud of other things man are daily, perhaps, as well as inthan thou canst (with any reason) be sensibly, turned up by the plough and of thy parentage. Few are proud of the spade.—Dwight. their souls; and none but fools are Go again to the burying-ground, proud of their bodies; seeing all the and walk over its dark and solemn redifference between him that walks and cesses. On whom do you tread ? On the floor he walks on is, that living • the mighty man, and the man of war, earth treads upon dead earth.—Rev. the judge, and the prophet, and the Thos. Adams.
prudent, and the ancient, the captain • Dust thou art, and unto dust thou of fifty, and the honourable man, and shalt return.' How humiliating an al- the counsellor, and the cunning artilotment is this to the pride of man ! ficer, and the eloquent orator.' What When the conqueror, returned from are they now? A mass of dust. What the slaughter of millions, enters his have they been? The food of worms. capital in triumph; when the trum- Is it possible that beings destined to pet of fame proclaims his approach, this end should be proud ? It is posand the shouts of millions announce sible. You and I are proud, as were his victories, surrounded by the once these wretched tenants of the spoils of subjugated nations, and fol- grave, and are destined to the same lowed by trains of vanquished kings humble, deplorable end. When, there. and heroes, how must his haughty fore, you contemplate with high selfspirit be lowered to the dust by the complacency the advantages of person remembrance, that within a few days which you possess, or the endowments himself shall become the food of a of the mind; when you look down worm reigning over him with a more from superiority of birth, riches, chaabsolute control than he ever exercised racter, or influence, on those below over his slaves! Yet this will be the you, and your bosoms swell with the real end of all his achievements. To consciousness of distinction, remem. this humble level must descend the ber your end, and be proud no more ! tenant of the throne, as well as of the -Ibid. cottage. Here wisdom and folly, learn
20 And Adam called his wife's name Eve; because she was the mother of all living. 21 Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.
V. 21. Adam was naked for all his from the sight and stroke of his jus. fig-leaves, while God taught him to tice.-Gurnall. *make coats of skin ;' covertly (as some The origin of raiment, though so think) shadowing forth Christ the true long ago, should never be forgotten by • Lamb of God, whose righteousness the sons of Adam, but be remembered alone was appointed by Him to cover as a check to the vanity and pride of our shame, and arm our naked souls apparel, which, whatsoever it is, car
ries with it a character of reproach to than of a scarf about the arm when it him that wears it, and an implicit is put out of joint, or a pair of spectaconfession of guilt and shame; whereof cles to help the dimness of the sight. we have no more cause to be proud -Caryl.
22 And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever : Therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken.
Man was expelled from Eden lest he creed from eternity, but was to be should take of the tree of life, and through the death of Christ. The eat, and live for ever. Immortality mortality of man, therefore, gloomy under his then circumstances would and sad in itself, was, under the moral have been the direst curse. Redemp- circumstances of the case, the greatest tion from sin and its penalty was de- blessing.—Dr. Leask.
24 So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.
Every man has a paradise around threatening, to keep the way of the him till he sins, and the angel of an tree of death, that is sin. Thus He accusing conscience drives him from always meets sinful men in the way of his Eden. And even then there are their lusts (as the angel met Balaam) holy hours, when this angel sleeps, and with a drawn sword to stop them in man comes back, and with the inno- their way. The Lord hath set many cent eyes of a child looks into his pa- drawn swords in the way of every sin; radise again-into the broad gates and and He hath left the prints of His rural solitudes of nature.—Longfellow. wrath upon the backs of many sin
As God set a flaming sword to keep ners, that we should take heed of sinthe way of the tree of life, so He con- ning.-Caryl. tinually sets a flaming word, that is a
CHAP. IV. A ND Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain,
and said, I have gotten a man from the LORD. Many of our most distinguished He- while its transmission from one genebrew scholars render the latter clause ration to another in the families of the *I have begotten a man, Jehovah !' It faithful, and its final insertion in the is true Eve was mistaken in the opinion records of inspiration, may have been she had formed of her firstborn; yet intended, on the part of Divine Proviwe may fairly regard her exclamation dence, to answer the purposes of a proas expressive of her belief in the unique phetical enunciation.—Rev. Timothy Person of the promised Deliverer ; East.
2 And she again bare his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground.
The two sons of the first man carried All worldly possessions are at once in their names a memorandum of what empty and vanishing; unsatisfactory they and their posterity were to ex- while they continue, and liable to a pect. Cain signifies possession; and speedy decay.-Anon. Abel signifies vanity or emptiness.
3 And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD.
Thus the Jews consecrated the first Athens to the honour of the sun, in fruits of their oil, their wine, and their which the simplicity of the offerings wheat; and by Divine institution what- resembled the practice of the first ages. soever opened the womb, whether of Consecrated grass was carried about, man or beast, was sacred to the Lord. in which the kernels of olives were This same custom prevailed among the wrapped up, together with figs, all Gentiles, who, when they had gathered kinds of pulse, oak leaves with acorns, in their fruits, offered solemn sacrifices and cakes composed of the meal of with thanks to God for his blessings. wheat and barley, heaped up in a pyAccording to Porphyry, an ancient ramidal form, allusive to the beams festival was annually celebrated at which ripened the grain.—Anon.
* And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering : But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.
Cain's offering was just what a self- Cain thought it enough, if not too righteous heart would offer; it pro- much, to give him a little of the fruit ceeded on the principle that there of the ground. He showed thereby was no breach between him and his what base and unworthy thoughts he Creator, so as to require any confes- had of God, and accordingly he dealt sion of sin or respect to an atone- with him. O Christian! remember ment. Such offerings abound among when you engage in any duty of relius; but they are without faith,' and gion, that you go to do your homage therefore it is impossible they should to God, who will be worshipped like please God. The offering of Abel was Himself. • Cursed be the deceiver, the reverse of Cain's. It was the best which hath in his flock'a male, and of the kind, and included an expiatory sacrificeth unto the Lord a corrupt sacrifice.-A. Fuller.
thing; for I am a great king, saith the Abel is very choice in the matter of Lord of Hosts, and my name is dreadhis sacrifice; not any of the flock that ful among the heathen.' (Mal. i. 14.)— comes first to hand, but the firstlings. Gurnall. Neither did he offer the lean of them The order of things is worthy of to God, and save the fat for himself, notice. God first accepted Abel, and but gives God the best of the best. then his offering. If he had been jusBut of Cain's offering no such care is tified on the ground of his good deeds, recorded to be taken by him: it is the order should have been reversed; only said, that he brought of the but, believing in the Messiah, he was fruit of the ground an offering unto accepted for His sake; and, being so, the Lord,' but not a word that it was his works were well-pleasing in the the first fruit or best fruit.
sight of God. And as Abel Again, Abel did not put God off with accepted as a believer, so Cain was a beast or two for a sacrifice, but with rejected as an unbeliever. Being them gives his heart also. Heb. xi. 4: such, the Lord had no respect to • By faith,' &c.; he gave God the in- him; he was under the curse, and ward worship of his soul ; and for this all he did was abhorred in His eyes. he obtained a testimony from God -A. Fuller. himself that he was righteous. Whereas
6 And the LORD said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth ? and why is thy countenance fallen ? ? If thou doest well, shalt thou not
be accepted ? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.
V. 7. Sin lieth at the door.' 1. The is near at hand, and will soon overtake charge or imputation of sin lies thee. 4. The propitiation is not far against thee. 2. You are in danger of to seek.-M. Henry. adding to your crime. 3. Punishment
8 And Cain talked with Abel his brother: and it came to pass when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him.
Death was denounced to man as a and life good, Cain had been slain, carse; yet behold, it first lights upon and Abel had survived. Now that it a saint! How soon was it altered by begins with him that God loves, we the mercy of that just hand which may exultingly ask, 0 Death! where inflicted it! If death had been an evil, is thy sting?'—Bp. Hall.
9 And the Lord said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother's keeper ?
It is not enough that we confine our- tian charity is to be on the largest selves to the mere duties of our re- possible scale.-L. spective calling or profession. Chris
10 And he said, What hast thou done ? the voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto me from the ground. 11 And now art thou cursed from the earth, which hath opened her mouth to receive thy brother's blood from thy hand; 12 When thou tillest the ground, it shall not henceforth yield unto thee her strength ; a fugitive and a vagabond shalt thou be in the earth.
V. 10. •What hast thou done ?' The betrayed deep emotion. I went up to Rev. Rowland Hill, preaching on one him, and said, “And what have you occasion from this text at Cowes, began done, young man ?' •O, Sir,' said his sermon as follows: 'In my way to he, deeply affected, “I have done that your island, I visited the county jail at which I cannot undo, and which has Winchester, and there I saw many who undone me.' This, my dear friends,' were accused of heavy crimes, but who said the venerable minister, is the seemed careless and indifferent, and to situation of every one of you. You have but little sense of their awful have each of you done that which has situation. But one young man at- undone you, and which you cannot tracted my attention; he kept separate undo. (Hosea xiii. 9.)-Anecdotes. from the rest, and his countenance
13 And Cain said unto the LORD, My punishment is greater than I can bear.
Behold here a finished picture of to the fifty-first Psalm !--A. Fuller. impenitent misery! What a contrast
14 Behold, thou hast driven me out this day from the face of the earth; and from thy face shall I be hid; and I shall be a fugitive and a vagabond in the earth; and it shall come to pass, that every one that findeth me shall slay me. 15 And the LORD said unto him, Therefore, whosoever slayeth Cain, vengeance shall be taken on