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Satan's Use of Instruments.

Satan's Use of Instruments.

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By John William Burgeon

Genesis iii. 13.

The Woman said, The Serpent beguiled me and

I did eat.
By John William Burgeon

Genesis iii. 13.

The Woman said, The Serpent beguiled me and

I did eat.

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Published by: GLENN DALE PEASE on Oct 09, 2013
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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SATA'S USE OF ISTRUMETS.By John William BurgeonGenesis iii. 13.The Woman said, The Serpent beguiled me andI did eat.It is thought that we shall not do amiss if,on more than one of these Sundays in Lent, webend our thoughts on that great transaction of which all the rest of Human History is as itwere the development and consequence : — Iallude to the Temptation and Fall of our firstParents. Generally, at this season, our Lord'sencounter with Satan affords subject for medi-tation. We should never disconnect the twoencounters: for indeed the one is, to a mar-vellous extent, the very counterpart of the other.But it must ever be useful, that we should bendour eyes attentively and chiefly on the spectacleof our first father Adam's Temptation and Fall.For you are requested to consider how fruitfulin instruction cannot fail to be the Divine recordof the process by which Sin first came into theWorld : bow it cannot but wtap \x^ mthin itself SJSthe whole mystery of Temptation. Look onlyat the severe brevity of the narrative, on theone hand; the momentous issues of what is
narrated, on the other : — and you must feel thatevery word deserves to be weighed and explained, — ^Again, consider how the story of the begin-ning of Sin, is introduced : — " ow the Serpentwas more subtil than any beast of the fieldwhich the Lord God had made." We are thusprepared to find the note of extraordinary subtiliyclearly set on the entire transaction. — Oncemore. This was no chance encounter. Thefountain-head of our Humanity, the first createdPair in their innocency, are seen on one side:the chief of the fallen Angels is seen on theother. ow his method of successful attack, — their method of unsuccessful resistance, — mustneeds be brimful of teaching. It will be for us totake warning by Adam's fall ; to gather instructionfrom every circmnstance of his transgression.The few words read at the outset of this shortdiscourse are taken from the close of the Temp-tation of our first Parents, — but they belong tothe beginning of it. "The Serpent beguiledme, and I did eat,'* — is Eve's account of hertransgression; what Eve says when A.d^\acharjres her with the blame of his own do^xvi^*FIRST SUDAY I LET,^' Hast thou eaten of the Tree whereof I com-manded thee that thou shouldest not eat?"(asked the Almighty Creator.) " And the Man^aid, The Woman whom Thou gavest to bewith me, she gave me of the Tree and I did eat.And the Lord God said unto the Woman,What is this that thou hast done? And theWoman said, The Serpent beguiled me/'Thus then was the matter traced back to its
beginning. The Serpent is the first agent men-tioned. The story begins with him. With him^I say : for though a Serpent alone is spoken of, — and though a Serpent it certainly was whichtempted Eve, — it is just as certain that Satan«pake by the Serpent's mouth. The express de-claration of this fact is withheld until the Book of Revelation ; but it is hinted at repeatedlythroughout Scripture, and lies at the foundationof the whole story. And thus we are remindedat once of all those difficulties which have manya time occurred to us concerning the Divinenarrative. The strangeness and abruptness of the entire story: — the impossibility that a ser*pent should talk : — Eve's holding discourse withthe Serpent^ unsurprised by its faculty of speech :•—why Satan should have made choice of such re-pahire agency in approac\ivug o\a &:^t Mother tSATA 8 USB OF I8TRUMBTS. —and why Eve should have yielded to sucha contemptible assailant: — all these questionspresent themselves; and before I pass on, I willanswer them all as briefly almost as I have askedthem. . • . Fray observe then that the strange-ness of the story arises precisely out of itsahmptness : twenty pages of Divine explanation, —or one twentieth part of it, — would have per-haps made all quite plain. — A serpent of coursecannot talk at ail: but even stones can cryout, if God suffers them. — It is not recordedthat Eve was astonished : but she was^ — nodoubt — ^The abruptness with which this thirdchapter of Genesis begins, shews that she hadbeen holding parley with the Serpent before heinquired of her, " Yea, hath God said ?" Whatif, (as the poet feigns) the Serpent had declared

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