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Adam, Or the Merciful Discipline of Labor.

Adam, Or the Merciful Discipline of Labor.

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Published by glennpease

Genesis 5.

** And all the days that Adam lived were nine hun-

Genesis 5.

** And all the days that Adam lived were nine hun-

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Published by: glennpease on Oct 09, 2013
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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ADAM, OR THE MERCIFUL DISCIPLIE OF LABOUR.BY ALEXADER PEROSE FORBES, D.C.L.,Genesis 5.** And all the days that Adam lived were nine hun-dred AD THIRTY YEARS ; AD HE DIEd'The merciful dealings of God with Adam didnot cease with the fall. Solemn and judicial asthe sentence is^ it is not a curse. The curse islaunched at the serpent, and inflicted on the'earth for man's sake. The man and the womanreceive their doom^ but God hath not forgottento be gracious. Though the nearness which Hepermitted in Paradise has ceased, yet in faithof the coming Seed, some converse still took place betwixt the Creator and His offending handi-work. We find Him providing the man and hiswife with coats of skin, which circumstance hasbeen held to presume the institution of sacrifice,and we have an act of devotion on the part of B2 Adam :Eve^ when she bare a son and called his nameSeth^ '^for God^ said she, hath appointed meanother seed instead of Abel, whom Cain slew/^^ow from these^ and from other circumstances^it has been the universal belief of the Churchthat Adam is saved. This was the firm convic-tion of the Jews themselves, as is concluded fromthe text in the Wisdom of Solomon .^ " She (Wis-dom) preserved the first formed father of theworld) that was created alone, and brought himout of his fall, and gave him power to rule allthings/' ajr, they have a Strange but beautifulopinion that Adam in his long exile from Paradiseconsoled himself with the composition of the 93rdPsalm. ^'The Lord is King and hath put on
gloriout apparel/'^The belief ia the salvation of our first parentsis almost universal in. the early Fathers of theChurchi S^ Augustine states the matter in thesewords^r^^^ Concerning the first man,, the father of the human race, that Christ, when He descendedinto hell, freed him from thence, ia the alloweduoiveraal consent of the Church. And it is to beheld that she has not believed this on lightgeoands^ seeing that it has been handed down onaU sides, even although no express authority fromcactonical Scriptures can be produced for itJ'^> 6cn. hr. 25. • Wisd. x. 1.* Conk a Lap ad loa * £p. 99, ad Enod.The Merciful DUcipime of LahoWm #Tertnnian and &ihsn mention a carious tradi-tion that the bones of Adam were carefully pre-served by oah in the ark^ and after the deluge,divided among his sons^ — that Shem got theskull^ and buried it on Mount Calvary^ so thatthere it was bedewed^ and washed^ and quickenedin the Blood of Christ^ — the first subject of sinf being the first to find the fruit of the Blood of the Crucified One.The passages in S. Faurs Epistles which speak of the condemnation of the first man in contradis-tinction to the graces of the Second Adam, do notapply to the personal^ but to the figurative andcollective Adam^ or human nature. It i« quitepossible that Adam may bare been forgiven andyet have continued to suffer, and the deprivationof the Paradisaic gifts during his long penance of nine hundred and thirty years^ is quite compatiblewith his final acceptance.The condition of Adam's long life is madeknown to us in the terms of his ccmdemnation bythe words of 6oi> Himself. "Cursed is theground for thy sake.. In sorrow shalt thou eat of 
it all the days of thy life. Thorns also andthistles shall it bring forth to tfaee^ and thou shalieat the herb of the field. In the sweat of thybrow shalt thou eat bread, till thou return untathe ground, for out of it wast thou taken, for dustthou art^ and unto dust shalt thou return.'^4 Adam :Here then was a high sentence to degradation,to labour, and to death.1. What a contrast was the life in Paradise tothe life in the cursed field I To use a familiarexpression, if ever any one came down in theworld, it was Adam. He was stripped of right-eousness and of many a superadded gift, he nolonger conversed with God as in times past, theheat and the burden of the day were his portionand his doom. Then how his memory must havesupplied the elements of torment to him, if withBoethius we say, ^^that the most unhappy kindof misfortune is to have been happy,'' or with ourown Chaucer, following Dante," For of Fortune's sharp adversityThe worst kind of infortune is this,A man to have been in prosperite,And it remember, when it passed is."What must have been Adam's regrets when hecompared his fallen state with the condition inwhich God had created him ? ay, more, inas-much as we often see the results of sin moreevidently in others' faults than in our own, howmust his heart have been wrung as during thelong life which God gave him, he witnessed the sinand the misery as a consequence of sin whichprevailed among his immediate descendants. Thedeath of Abel and the homicide of Lamech areThe Merciful Discipline of Labour. 6

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