Sivut kuvina

congenial atoms and substances to re-unite. And then, what I borrowed of my neighbors and sellow-creatures shall be restored, and what I lent shall be repaid me again. And when by this, all the particles shall be detached from strangers and foreigners, and worked into contact each with each of its own; it is more than probable, that there will remain no more, than the general sum and weight os a human body in its proper size. Then out of this mass, thus in contact, the new body will issue, or spring forth as the new wheat out of the old grain: and every particle, both liquid and solid, that the old body ever possessed as its own real contents , shall contribute and impart out of itself to the existence of the new.

So this will not be patching up the old bodythus collected, and bringing it to lise again, but causing a new body to issue out of the old materials , as the stalk grows out of the grain which is sown in the earth. For the present body is only the seed of a human body, sown in the earth and water. It is sown a natural body, in corruption, dishonor and weakness; and a spiritual body is to be extracted out of the materials of the

old old; raised in incorruption, glory and power. The resurrection-body therefore, is not the old body reanimated, but a kind of quintessence extracted by divine power and art, out of the old, raised, and refined to a spiritual and sublime mode of existence, wherein it shall never be liable to corruption, dishonor or weakness. But though there will be no deformity, yet there will be as real a difference, and marks ol distinction between person and perlon, as now is, which the apostle in the discourse here alluded to, illustrates in the different glories of the stars. All human bodies raised in the savor os God, will be inexpressibly beautisul and grand; but every one will appear striking, by some distinct beauties, peculiar to itself.

This work was done in the resurrection os Christ himself. For, as above, if one rose for all, then all rose in him. Therefore he says, I am the resurrection and the lise. It is already done, though the manisestation of it wfll not take place till the last day. And as herein, the work of God upon the human body is carried to the utmost state of perfection, and cannot be mended; a sabbath of rest, satissaction and joy must ensue, because, as

before before, nothing more can be dono to make it immortal, powersul and glorious.

Lastly, upon the same morning and moment, all nature passed into her new and sinal state, and consequently must usher in a sabbath-day. This, as we said above, was the day wherein the works of God were sinished, when nature received a new birth, or second creation. This she was to have received if sin had not entered. But in a certain fense, being a partner in man's apostacy, she is become a sinner, and must die. And so she did mystically along with her creator. She was seen in dying pangs and convulsions at the time he expired.

Here was such dying as nevsr will be again. The creator died in insinite agony; the earth died trembling and broke her heart, though a rock; the heaven died, and her sace not only turned pale, but black: sun, moon and stars died; every man, every creature and every atom died and expired at once. This brought on the general suneral of the universe and its maker; and now striafy speaking, the dead bury their dead. For God is dead and buried by those who were dead

[ocr errors]

in him, which terminated in the general resurrection of all. The creator rose and the creation with him, and passed into a new state.

This was foretold by the prophet Isaiah, 65. 57. Behold I cieate new heavens and a new earth; and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind. But be you glad and rejoice in that which I create: for behold I create Jerusalem a rejoicing and her people a joy. The subjects proposed as a matter of joy are new heavens and a new earth, which God, by the prophet promises to create. This new creation does not mean giving heaven and earth their sirst existence, but their second, wherein the old things become new. Or as we said before, it is giving the universe a new condition, bringing it out of its initial, into its compleat state. The heavens and the earth, men and things, passed, by a second creation, into their sinal state of persection.

This is a matter of great joy. Yet being an object of saith and not of present sight, it is not at all attended to; but made by most a matter of jest and ridicule. But be you glad and rejoice in

U that that which I create, lays God, for behold 1 create Jerusalem a rejoicing and her people a joy. That' is, be glad and rejoice, for heaven and earth, and all their inhabitants shall at once be created anew. He exhorts men before hand to rejoice in the work, for he knew that on account of its invisibility for thousands of years, they would flight it. And Peter, in his second epistle assures us, That there would be scoffers and mockers ot this subject, walking in their own lusts, and saying. Where is the promise of his coming? for since the sathers sell afleep all things continue as they were from the creation. Which ignorant lye he confutes, and then asserts, Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness. And in what follows, he makes it absolutely necessary for christians to believe this, and remain sirm and immoveable in it, in order to their deliverance from sin, and possession of suture glory.

The apostles were certain that this wduld appear in due time, because it had mystically taken place already. They call it sometimes, an universal reconciliation os all things. So Paul, Collossians

« EdellinenJatka »