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On the Way of Acceptance, As Announced in the Gospel.

On the Way of Acceptance, As Announced in the Gospel.

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Published by glennpease
BY Rev. William Hooper, A. M.

ROMANS VIII. 3, 4.
For what the Law could not do, in that it was weak through the
" flesh, God sending his own Son, in the likeness of sinful flesh,
*' and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteousness
" of the law, might be fulfilled in us, who walk, not after the
" flesh but after the Spirit."
BY Rev. William Hooper, A. M.

ROMANS VIII. 3, 4.
For what the Law could not do, in that it was weak through the
" flesh, God sending his own Son, in the likeness of sinful flesh,
*' and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteousness
" of the law, might be fulfilled in us, who walk, not after the
" flesh but after the Spirit."

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Published by: glennpease on Jul 08, 2014
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O THE WAY OF ACCEPTACE, AS AOUCED I THE GOSPEL. BY Rev. William Hooper, A. M. ROMAS VIII. 3, 4. For what the Law could not do, in that it was weak through the " flesh, God sending his own Son, in the likeness of sinful flesh, *' and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteousness " of the law, might be fulfilled in us, who walk, not after the " flesh but after the Spirit." THE object in this discourse, will be, to show, that the Gospel is the grand remedy, which God, in his infinite wisdom, has devised for the necessities of man. That something is wrong in man, that the world is not as it should be, that it is in disorder, and needs rectifica- tion, I suppose, none will deny. There is certainly some want of harmony, between the heart of man, and his cir- cumstances in this world. Other things, we find exactly adapted to each other. Whatever is the effect, simply of the divine agency, needs no amendment. The vege- tables, and the inferior animals, are all possessed of pro- perties suited to their circumstances. We find there a beautiful correspondence and adaptation of one part of nature to another. The structure of the bird is just such as fits it to fty in the air ; the formation of the fish is just such as fits it best to live and move in water. In like manner, the plants are most wonderfully and wisely adapted to the earth, the air, and the water, which are requisite to their life and growth. It is in man alone, we behold disorder and confusion. Strange, that in the no- blest terrestrial creature, there should appear, that want of 94 harmony and correspondence between his character and
 
his situation, which is discoverable in none of the infe- rior creatures ! And even in man, it is only in one part of his nature, that we discover this disorder. That part is the one which could be influenced by his free agency. Whatever God has done, is well done. Whatever depends upon God's appointment and fixed laws, bears the stamp of his wibdom ; and goes on smoothly, and hap- pily. It is only where man's free agency has room to militate with the wise appointments of Heaven, that the traces of disorder and discord are seen. Thus man's physical structure, appears admirably adapted to his cir- cumstances in the world. His lungs, as the anatomist will tell you, are contrived, in the best possible manner, to inhale and exhale the air, he was destined to breathe ; his eye, is formed with exquisite mechanism, to receive the light and to enjoy the variety of colours, with which the earth is profusely painted ; and his ear is exactly constructed, so as to relish the concord of sweet sounds. So far, all is right : Why ? Because man's moral nature cannot alter these laws of his physical constitution. The beating of his pulse, the colours painted on the bottom of his eye, and the unison of sounds conveyed to his ear, do not at all depend on his will or inclination. These things, God hath fixed by unalterable laws. What, then, is wrong in man ? Why, his soul. That part of him which is capable of happiness, is not adapted to the ob-  jects around it ; it does not harmonize with its circum- stances. Give the lungs sufiicient pure air, and they are perfectly satisfied, and play with healthful ease ; give the stomach enough of wholesome food, and its appetite is perfectly gratified ; give the ear good music, and its enter- tainment is complete, without any alloy. But give the soul the whole world, and it will not be satisfied ! Is not this phenomenon, a strong evidence, that man's 95 moral part, is not as his Creator originally formed it ;^-
 
that it has undergone some sad alteration ? Else, why- do we not see the same harmony, the same wise and beautiful correspondence between his character, and his worldly circumstances, that we discover in all other parts of the works of God ? Man is certainly the noblest of God's terrestrial works. But what gives him this supe- riority ? ot surely, his bodily powers ; for he is sur- passed, in strength and swiftness, by many inferior crea- tures. His true superiority, then, consists in possessing a rational and immortal soul. This is the noble work of God. ow, is it not remarkable, that the defect and disorder we have been noticing, should be detected in the very master-piece of God's workmanship on earth ? In looking at the works of a skilful artist, we do not mind it, if we see imperfections in his common, every- day performances, which he tosses off from his hand in carelessness and haste ; but when he undertakes a work which is to be a lasting specimen of his talents, then, if ever, we expect to see a display of skill and exactness. What should we say, if, upon examining a statue, we should find the limbs all fashioned and turned with per- fect truth and beauty, but, upon coming to the face, we should find it very rudely carved, or horridly distorted? Should we not say, this face was not carved by the same hand which formed the otherjjarts ; or some mischievous and malignant person has alterred and marred the origi- nal countenance? This is just the conclusion we ought to draw, from the examination of our own moral charac- ter. In scrutinizing all the various works of the Deity, from the meanest insect up to our own bodies, every thing bears the impress of divine skill and goodness; but when we come to God's chief and noblest earthly work, here something is wrong ; here are evident marks of distortion and error. What is the irresistible inference ? 96

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