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sin into the world, and man became mortal,* according to the threatening in the former chapter.'' Now, if mankind becomes mortal, and must die, according to the threatening in the former chapter, then doubtless the threatening in the former chapter, Thou shalt die, had respect not only to Adam, but to mankind, and included Adam's posterity. Yea, and Dr. Taylor is express in it, and very often so, that the sentence concerning dropping into the ground, or returning to the dust, did include Adam's posterity. So, page 20, speaking there of that sentence, “ Observe, (says he) that we their posterity are in fact subjected to the same affliction and mortality, here by sentence inflicted upon our first parents. Page 42, Note. But yet men through that long tract, were all subject to death, therefore they must be included in the sentence.” The same he affirms in innumerable other places, some of which I shall have occasion to mention presently.
The sentence which is founded on the threatening, and, as Dr. Taylor says, according to the threatening, extends to as many as were included in the threatening, and to no more. If the sentence be upon a collective subject, infinitely, (as it were) the greatest part of which were not included in the threatening, nor were ever threatened at all by any threateniing whatsoever, tben certainly this sentence is not according to the threatening, nor built upon it. If the sentence be according to the threatening, then we may justly explain the threatening by the sentence; and if we find the sentence spoken to the same person, to whom the threatening was spoken, and spoken in the second person singular, in like manner with the threatening, and founded on the threatening, and according to the threatening; and if we find the sentence includes Adam's posterity, then we may certainly infer, that so did the threatening; and hence, that both the threatening and sentence were delivered to Adam as the public head and representative of his posterity.
* The subsequent part of the quotation, the reader will not meet with in the third edition of Dr. Taylor, but in the second of 1741.
And we may also further infer from it, in another respect directly contrary to Dr. Taylor's doctrine, that the sentence which included Adam’é posterity, was to death, as a punishment to that posterity, as well as to Adam himself. For a sentence pronounced in execution of a threatening, is to a punishment. Threatenings are of punishments. Neither God nor man are wont to threaten others with favors and benefits.
But lest any of this author's admirers should stand to it, that it may very properly be said, God threatened mankind with bestowing great kindness upon them, I would observe, that Dr. Taylor often speaks of this sentence as pronounced by God on all mankind as condemning them, speaks of it as a sentence of condemnation judicially pronounced, or a sentence which God pronounced on all mankind acting as their judge, and in a judicial proceeding. Which he affirms in multitudes of places. In p. 20, speaking of this sentence, which he there says, subjects us, Adam's and Eve's posterity, to affliction and mortality, he calls it a judicial act of condemnation. “ The judicial act of condemnation (says he) clearly implies, a taking him to pieces, and turning him to the ground from whence he was taken.” And p. 28, 29, Note, “in all the scripture from one end 10 the other, there is recorded but one judgment to condemnation, which came upon all men, and that is, Gen. ii. 17...19. Dust thou art,” &c. P. 40, speaking of the same, he says, “all men are brought under condemnation." In p. 27, 28. “ By judgment, judgment to condemnation, it appeareth evidently to me, he (Paul) means the being adjudged to the forementioned death; he means the sentence of death, of a general mortality, pronounced upon mankind, in consequence of Adam's first transgression. And the condemnation inflicted by the judgment of God, answereth to, and is in effect the same thing with being dead.” P. 30. “ The many, that is mankind, were subject to death by the judicial act of God.” P. 31.“ Being made sinners, may very well signify, being adjudged, or condemned to death. For the Hebrew word &c. signifies to make one a sinner by a judicial sentence, or to condemn.” P. 178. Par. on Rom. v. 19. « Upon the account of one nian's disobedience, mankind were judicially constituted sinners ; that is, subjected to death, by the sentence of God the judge." And there are many other places where he repeats the same thing. And it is pretty remarkable, that in p. 48, 49, immediately after citing Prov. xvii. 15. “ He that justificth the wicked, and he that condemneth the just, are both an abomination to the Lord ;" and when he is careful in citing these words to put us in mind, that it is meant of a jua dicial act ; yet in the very next words he supposes that God himself does so, since he constantly supposes that Adam's posterity, whom God condemns, are innocent. His words are these, « From all this it followeth, that as the judgment, that passed upon all men to condemnation, is death's coming upon all men, by the judicial act of God, upon occasion of Adam's transgression : So, &c.” And it is very remarkable, that in p. 3, 4,7. S. he insists, “ That in scripture no action is said to be imputed, reckoned, or accounted to any person for righteousness or CONDEMNATION, but the proper act and deed of that person.". And yet he thus continually affirms, that all mankind are made sinners by a judicial act of God the Judge, even to condemnation, and judicially constituted sinners, and so subjected to a judicial sentence of condemnation, on occasion of Adam's sin ; and all according to the threatening denounced 10 Adam, thou shalt surely die : Though he suppos. es Adam's posterity were not included in the threatening, and are looked upon as perfectly innocent, and treated wholly as such.
I am sensible Dr. Taylor does not run into all this inconsistence, only through oversight and blundering ; but that he is driven to it, to make our his matters in his evasion of that noted paragraph in the 5th chapter of Romans ; especially those three sentences, ver. 16. “ The judgment was !y one to condemnation." Ver. 18“ By the offence of one, judgment came upon all men to condemnation ;" and ver. 19.“ By one iman's disobedience many were made sinners," And I am also sensible of what he offers to salvс the inconvenience, viz.
That if the threatening had immediately been executed on Adam, he would have had no posterity ; and that so far the possible existence of Adam's posterity fell under the threatening of the law, and into the hands of the judge, to be dispos. ed of as he should think fit: And that this is the ground of the judgment to condemnation, coming upon all men."* But this is trifling, to a great degree : For,
1. Suffering death, and failing of possible existence, are entirely different things. If there had never been any such thing as sin committed, there would have been infinite numbers of possible beings, which would have failed of existence, by God's appointment. God has appointed not to bring into existence numberless possible worlds, each replenished with innumerable possible inhabitants. But is this equivalent to God's appointing them all to suffer death?
2. Our author represents, that by Adam's sin, the possible existence of his posterity fell into the hands of the judge, to be disposed of as he should think fit. But there was no need of any sin of Adam's, or any body's else, in order to their being brought into God's hands in this respect. The future possible existence of all created beings, is in God's hands, antecedently to the existence of any sin. And therefore by God's sovereign appointment, infinite numbers of possible beings, without any relation to Adam, or any other sinning being, do fail of their possible existence. And if Adam had never sinned, yet it would be unreasonable to suppose, but that innumerable multitudes of his possible posterity, would have failed of existence by God's disposal. For will any be so unreasonable as to imagine, that God would, and must bave brought into existence as many of his posterity as it was possible should be, if he had not sinned? Or that in that case, it would not have been possible, that any other persons of his posterity should ever have existed, than those individual per. sons, who now actually fall under that sentence of suffering death, and returning to the dust?
3. We have many accounts in scripture, which imply the actual failing of the possible existence of innumerable multitudes of Adam's posterity, yea, of many more than ever come into existence. As of the possible posterity of Abel, the
* Page 90, 9: 95
possible posterity of all them that were destroyed by the food, and the possible posterity of the innumerable multitudes which we read of in scripture, destroyed by sword, pestilence, &c. And if the threatening to Adam reached his posterity, in no other respect than this, that they were liable to be deprived by it of their possible existence, then these instances are much more properly a fulfilment of that threatening, than the suffering of death by such as actually come into existence; and so is that which is most properly the judgment to condemnation, executed by the sentence of the judge, proceeding on the foot of that threatening. But where do we ever find this so represented in scripture? We read of multitudes cut off for their personal sins, who thereby failed of their possible posterily. And these are mentioned as God's judgments on them, and effects of God's condemnation of them : But when are they ever spoken of as God's judicially proceeding against, and condemning their possible posterity ?
4. Dr. Taylor, in what he says concerning this matter, speaks of the threatening of the law delivered to Adam, which the possible existence of his posterity fell under, as the ground of the judgment to condemnation coming upon all men. But herein he is exceeding inconsistent with himself ; for he affirms in a place forecited, that the scriplure never speaks of any sentence of condemnation coming upon all men, but that sentence in the third of Genesis, concerning man's turning to dust. But according to him, the threatening of the law deliv. ered to Adam, could not be the ground of that sentence ; for he greatly insists upon it, that that law was entirely abrogated · before that sentence was pronounced, that this law at that time was not in being, had no existence to have any such influence, as might procure a sentence of death ; and that therefore this sentence was introduced entirely on another foot, viz, on the foot of a new dispensation of grace. The reader may see this matter strenuously urged, and particularly argued by him, p. 113...220. S. So that this sentence could not, according to him, have the threatening of that law for its ground, as he supposes ; for it never stood upon that ground. It could not be called a judgment of condemnation under any