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was impreffed with fear and reverence of him that made it, Jonah, i. 9. God would have the hearts of people awed with his works; and it is contempt of God not to be fo.
(8.) Labour to get a renewed right to the creatures. Our first charter was loft by Adam at his fall; and as the estates of rebels fall of courfe to the crown, fo our right to the creatures was forfeited, and they fell back into the hands of him that gave them. We muft get a new right through Jefus Chrift, by faith in him, if ever we would have true comfort in the creatures. I own a wicked man has a fort of right to the creatures: Pfal. cxv. 16. "The earth hath the Lord given to the fons of men." By the fame law that God has faid, Thou shalt not kill, he has made them over to us. This is a providential right, but it is not a covenant-right. It is but like the right the forfeited condemned man has to his meat till the hour of his execution.
Laftly, Ye that are godly, I would befeech you to long for that bleffed day for which the creatures are groaning. You have good reason, as well as they. Long for the day this stage shall be taken down, whereon fo much fin and mifery are acted, when all that Adam put wrong fhall be completely righted by Jesus Christ.
CREATION'S TRAVAIL, AND DELIVERY..
ROM. viii. 22. For we know that the whole creation groaneth, and travaileth in pain together until now.
AVING, in the preceding difcourfes, confidered the groans of the creatures under the fin of men, I now proceed to the illustration of
DocT. II. That the creatures' pains under the fin of man are travailing-pains, fore indeed, but hopeful, they will not last always, they will be delivered from them.
THAT this is the fenfe of this metaphor, appears by comparing ver. 23. "And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firft-fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body."
The creatures have now had a sharp shower for feveral weeks; bleffed be the Lord it has in part intermitted, and that he has heard prayers in their be
half. Many fuch showers they have had since Adam's fall; and though they have an intermiffion of the exquifite pains, they are not well yet; the clouds will return after the rain. But the day will come when they will be quite well, and fairly delivered, and never groan more. What is clear from the scriptures in this nice point, I fhall briefly lay before you, and a more curious inquiry is not fit for the pulpit. With this view, I shall inquire,
I. When this delivery of the creatures is to come to pass.
II. What delivery fhall they then get?
III. Confirm the doctrine of the creatures' delivery. And then,
IV. Lead you to the practical improvement of the fubject.We are, then,
I. To inquire when this delivery of the creatures is to come to pass.
God, that has appointed a fet time for every thing, has also appointed the precife time for the delivery of the groaning creation; and this is plainly revealed to be at the end of the world. For then is that time, Rom. viii. 19. 21.; fo Rev. xx. 11. "And I faw a great white throne, and him that fat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled; and there was found no place for them." The apoftle Peter is very exprefs, that then they fhall have their bearing fhower, as it were, the sharpeft ever they had, but it is the laft. 2 Pet. iii. 10. "But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in the which the heavens fhall pass away with a great noise, and the elements fhall melt with fervent heat; the earth alfo, and the works that are therein, shall be burnt Ver. 13. "Neverthelefs, we, according to his
promife, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteoufnefs." They have been. in their pangs ever since Adam fell, and will not be delivered till then. When that period fhall be, I know not; but it is plain the world is come to its old age. The heaven and earth, that beautiful garment, is grown old, as the pfalmift foretold long ago, Pfal. cii. 6.; therefore it cannot be very long ere it will be changed. She that hath had many children is waxed feeble; I mean, our mother earth. It is evident fhe is not fo fruitful as she was; neither do her fruits yield fuch nourishment as sometimes they did, they are both fewer and weaker; hence ftill lefs and weaker bodies. And why fo with the earth, but because the heavens are in the fame condition, and afford not such influences as formerly, in the vigour of their youth? It is obferved by aftronomers, that the fun fhineth more dimly, and appeareth more seldom than before, being much nearer to the earth than in ancient times. So much the nearer, fo much the less influence, as appears by comparing fummer and winter, the mid-day and evening; so that the mighty giant, having so long run his race, begins alfo to wax feeble. It is long fince our Lord faid he would come quickly, Rev. xxii. 20. And most of the prophecies of the holy fcripture are already fulfilled. All the feals are opened. Six of the trumpets are already blown. In the time of the feventh, the mystery of God is to be finished, and the world to end, Rev. x. 7. And there is no doubt but it is long fince it began to found. Under this trumpet are contained seven vials; and if thefe were poured out, then time is no more. There seems to be two of these vials past, and that we are now under the third, expecting the fourth. So that there will be but four of them to come. And
And it is very agreeable to the dispensations of providence, that the nearer the end, the motion will be the quicker; as in the reigns of the kings of Ifrael and Judah, before their respective captivitics, 2 Kings, xv. 16. & 23. and downwards. Thus, without dipping further, it is evident we are far advanced in the last times, and that the world is in its old, if not decrepit age; and at the end is the delivery*.-We now proceed,
II. To inquire what delivery the creation shall then get. The creature conceived vanity and mifery from the time of Adam's fin, then they fhall be delivered of that burden, with which they have been fo long big, Rom. viii. 20. 21. Now, according to what I before said on the first general head, we may foberly explain here.
1. They fhall fully answer their end, I mean not the very end for which they were created at first, for fome of these are inconsistent with the state of glorified faints: 1 Cor. vi. 13. "Meats for the belly, and the belly for meats, but God fhall deftroy both it and them." But whatever is their end, they shall fully answer that, God fhall have his glory by them; and if he design any benefit to man by them, they fhall not be plagued by vanity therein, Rom. viii. 20. 2 Pet. iii. 13.
2. They fhall be freed from all that evil that cleaves to their nature now by reason of man's fin. For now they have undergone a fad alteration, but then they shall undergo another. They shall be changed Pfal. cii. 26. "They fhall perish, but thou shalt endure; yea, all of them shall wax old
*The author has, in this part of his manufcript, several notes in fhort hand, which the tranfcriber could not decypher, from the want of which this part of the subject is not fo complete.