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sins in order before him. “ He that telleth unto man what his thought is, the Lord God of hosts is his name.” Therefore, as he doth perfectly show man his sin, and by degrees manifest his duty, and afford light and power sufficient to forsake sin, and obey fully; both are attainable in this life, though gradually. Still, his concluding that the perfect man, if on earth, he sinneth, from 1 Kings viii. 46. There is no man that sinneth not; and Ecclesiast. vii. 20. There is not a just man upon the earth that doeth good and sinneth not; I ask him then, if there be no bigher attainment in this life, than for the best of men to sin in doing good, as some of his brethren interpret those last words ? But if he will please to read D. Gell's Essay to the amendment of the last translation of the Bible,* he will find, that he doth not render the words in the indicative mood, [that sinneth not,] but in the potential, [that may not sin.) as there is no man that may not sin, or but that he may sin ; there is no man just in the earth that doeth good, and may not sin; which much differs from positively concluding, that every just man sinneth in doing good : and he further intimates it to be but in a legal state of justness, wherein a legal just man may sin, and not in an evangelical or gospel state in Christ.

Neither do the words as rendered in 1 Kings viii. 46, There is no man that sinneth not, agree with the words before, if they sin against thee; but rather, there is no man, but that he may sin, and then it is possible for them not to sin ; and for a good man that is one in Christ, beyond the state of the law, to act, and speak, and walk in Christ the true light, and not to sin in doing good; but as of sincerity, but as of God, in the sight of God, so speak we in Christ : such are not sinning in their preaching and praying, nor do they bring forth wandering prayers or dreams, as you do, who are pleading and disputing for sin term of life, because it is said, the imagination of man's heart is evil from his youth, S. S. saith, this is not spoken of the old, wicked world, but of Noah and his family." p. 74. If, according to the tenor of his discourse he intends this as the state of Noah and his family, and that all their life time, I must tell him, that it is contrary to the testimony given of Noah, viz. that he was “ a just man, and perfect in his generations ; and Noah walked with God,” which was not with an evil heart or evil imaginations; for that is not a state of walking with God.

His saying, that “ this is not spoken of the old world, but of Noah," is a mistake : for “ God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.” This is as well mentioned in Genesis vi. 5, as chap. viii. 21, and relates

* Vide Gell's Sermon on Eccl. yii. 19, 20, in his essay,

to man as in the unregenerate state, estranged from God, and not to him as walking with God. I must needs conclude this man a pleader for sin, (with many others of bis brethren,) whilst he thus confounds states and attainments; and his doctrine to be antichristian and impious, while he accounts it “God's good pleasure, that sin and corruptions in part must remain in the saints, to keep them humble;" and that i Job abhorreth to entertain such a thought as that of perfection ;" and that to be wholly free and purged from evil principles, is not attainable in this life.” Let the impartial reader judge whether there be not in these doctrines a pleading for sin. And while he and his brethren contend against the Quakers for evil principles, they contend to no purpose, while they reckon that neither themselves, nor any else', can be purged from evil principles in this life. But they should not thus dispute and contend for sin and imperfection for terin of life, seeing they say, “ It is the duty of all to be perfect, and to press after it; to watch against all, even the least sins,” (p. 70,) and tell men, it is needful to forsake lying, injustice, uncleanness, &c. which the light calls them off from.” p. 69.

I say, their pleading for sin term of life, is inconsistent with this, and God will require it at their hands, for their strengthening, by these sin-pleasing doctrines, the hands of evil doers, that they may not forsake their sins. They cannot be altogether ignorant how apt transgressors are to lay hold on every doctrine that is of such a tendency, as suits their evil minds, as much of Stephen Scandret's work does.

Therefore, as it is high time for the wicked to repent of their wickedness, so it is time for you pretended ministers, who are contending for sin and imperfection, to repent thereof, and of your sinful doctrines, whereby you have strengthened many thousands in iniquity, made their bands more strong, and exposed them to ruin and destruction.

THE ANSWER

TO

THOMAS HICKS, AND HIS BRETEREN,

CONCERNING THE

RESURRECTION. HIS ABSURDITY, CONFUSION, AND CARNAL CONCEITS ABOUT

IT DISCOVERED. The resurrection owned by us, and scripturally asserted; with the

future and distinct existences of men and angels,

AND THE ETERNAL ADVANTAGE OF THE RIGHTEOUS

AFTER DISSOLUTION.

“ Jesus said, I am the resurrection and the life,” &c. John xi. 25.
“God giveth a body at his pleasure 1 Cor. xv. 38.
“ There is a natural body, and here is a spiritual body.” Ver. 42.
" But put away foolish and unlearned questions.” 2 Tim. ii. 23.

SERIOUS READER, -Our opposer appearing utterly void of any spiritual sense or di:ine understanding in this great and sublime mystery of the resurrection, his work is the less to be regarded. And we having very little of so much as seening argumentation from him, I need say the less to his work, only take notice of a few of his absurdities and abuses. What further is opened in the following discourse, is chietly for the sake of others more honest and free from prejudice, and in order to incline them from gross conceptions, to a spiritual apprehension of this mystery, and that they may be mindful of their present concernment of acceptance with God in his own life and righteousness, and not be diverted from obtaining the end and future felicity of the righteous, by un. certain, vain, and gross thoughts and notions of carnal minds, which are but depending upon their own imaginations of a future state, and not upon a divine principle or spiritual understanding thereof.

God is my record, that it is a spiritual eye and divine understanding, that I desire may be opened in these weighty matters treated on ; for which end, in the sight of God, I am open and free in my spirit in what I write on this occasion, which I desire to improve only for the glory of God and good of souls.

First. T. H. accuses us from what one Turner should say; but answers not what he said, or his argument.

Secondly. He accuses us, in general words, with “ manifest denial of the resurrection of the body.” For which his instance is, our saying that “flesh and blood shall not inherit the kingdom of God."

Hence observe, that it is no marvel that he reviles and slanders us, and thinks we have some reserved meaning, like the Jesuitical Equivocation," (Dialogue, p. 56.) when he hath accused us for making use of the apostle's plain words, which he hath not answered. Would it be well taken if lie should posi

tively say that the apostle denied the resurrection, when be said, “flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God.” 1. Cor. xv. 50. It is one thing to deny men's carnal and gross thoughts about the seed, resurrection, and body: and it is another thing wholly to deny the resurrection of the body, in those general expressions.

Thirdly. He pretends to desire information what the body is which we believe shall rise again, when before he hath positively accused us with manifest denial of the resurrection of the body, that is, of any body, if he meant as his words import.

And here again he is obtruding upon us that fool's question which the apostle reproved, when in answer thereto he said : « Thou fool, that which thou sowest is not quickened except it die: And thou sowest not that body which shall be ; but God gives it a body as it pleaseth him.” 1 Cor. xv, 35, 36, 37, 38. For which again he queries, whether we do not“

not tacitly deny the resurrection of the body?” For all this man's pretence of scripture being his rule, he is not content with the scripture language, nor yet willing to resign up himself to the pleasure of God, in giving to every seed its own body, as it ! pleaseth him.

But such busy intruders will be inquisitive concerning the manner of God's executing his pleasure in this thing: whereas men's present concern should be rather to wait to know, and i submit to the good pleasure of God in tbis life, and to find a part in Christ Jesus, who is the resurrection and the life, that they might be assured of the good effect and fruits of God's good! pleasure hereafter. For it is a design of satan to busy and { puzzle men's thoughts about their existences in heaven, whiler he keeps them in sin and darkness, in the way to hell. If they would faithfully serve God, in the way of his grace, bere on earth, they would freely trust him with the manner how he will i glorify them hereafter.

And my saying, “we ought not to be curious in these matters, to inquire into God's secret pleasure in things beyond our capacity ; neither do I desire to make myself wiser than I am; nor to appear wise above, or besides what is written,” viz. in this case.

Doth this argue that the divine light within is not the rule above the scriptures, as is implied in his 57th page, when I confess it to be that, which gives the true understanding of them ?--and to be wise according to what is written, and not to pretend the scriptures for proof of what they prove not. As for instance, when I am called to answer an unscriptural question, by such as profess scripture to be their rule, I think it most meet to answer them in the scripture language, which while they are not satisfied with, they inquire but to cavil, and for advantage, as my opposer and some others of his abettors

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p. 57.

did. And, for a more particular instance, when they query about the resurrection of the body, desiring I would inform them what body that is that shall rise again? this being the same with that which the apostle reproves for, 1 Cor. xv. 35, it deserves the same reproof for answer ver : 36, 37.

Again: though I really confess the universal resurrection of the body of mankind, or of the whole Adam: which implieth, 1. A general fall and death, and that they shall come forth, some to the resurrection of life, and others to the resurrection of damnation ; yet for the very phrase, namely," the resurrection of the body of flesh,"&c., I find it not in scripture; but the resurrection of the dead, the raising and arising of the dead, &c.

2. On my answer in the apostle's very words, (1 Cor. xv. 35,) the feigned christian saith, “ This answer Whitehead said, is sufficient for such busy intruding fools.” (p. 57.) By which he hath contradicted what he before saith Whitehead answered, in p. 54. But then he adds, "the apostle calls fools, not they that believed, but they that deny the resurrection of the body; persons of the saine persuasion with the Quakers in this point.'

That the Corinthians did positively deny, the resurrection, he bath not proved. But that some questioned, like him, “how, and with what body are the dead raised ?” &c. whose folly the apostle reproved. And this is not our persuasion thus to question, much less to deny the resurrection in the true sense and real mystery of it. For, with what body are the dead raised ?” is not a question necessary to salvation, nor essential to the being of a christian, who knows a part in Christ, who is the resurrection and the life.

Now come we to examine T. H.'s meaning upon the text, 1 Cor. xv. 37, 38, wherein he proceeds thus, concerning “this mortal," viz. “ That the body given it, is the same for substance, the same that was sown,

&c. only called a body given to it, because it is so changed from its accidents of corruption and mortality." Thus far T. H.

What reasonable man can make sense of this piece of oratory, to say that the body given to it, is the same for substance. As if he had said, this same mortal body is the same it which is given it; or, it is the same it that is sown, that is given itself; or, the same body for substance is given to the mortal body. What rare rhetorick is this?

And so bis brother Kiffin saith, “ that the seed that is sown, is the same body of fleshi, &c. which shall arise, though otherwise qualified.” If so, what is that body that God giveth to it, as it pleaseth him? For if it be looked upon in the nature of a seed, it must be supposed that it is another body, that is given to it, as is to every seed sown, according to its kind. For it is

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