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ble shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, death is swallowed up in victory." In both passages, Paul uses the word neton, but it is rendered in the one by the word mortal, and in the other by the word mortality. Again ; in both he uses the word kalapothe, which is rendered in both, swallowed up. In verse 4, of the passage before us, mortality is said to be swallowed up of life, and in 1 Cor. 15: 53, 54, death is said to be swallowed up in victory. What he called mortality in the one passage, he calls death in the other. Swallowed up in victory, and swallowed up of life, were with Paul synonimous expressions. But I ask, is the say. ing brought to pass, that death is swallowed up in victory or of life, at every man's death? Facts show that at every man's death, his life is swallowed up of mortality or death. Then death obtains the victory over him, instead of being swallowed up in victory. Well, when is death swallowed up in victory, or mortality swallowed up of life? It has been shown above, on 1 Cor. 15, and need not be repeated, that this saying never can be brought to pass, until the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the arch-angel and the trump of God; for then the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and all found alive shall be changed in the twinkling of an eye. But does the Lord descend from heaven at every

man's death ? And what trumpet sounds, or what living beings are changed, when every individual man expires ?

There is no evidence from either Scripture or facts, that any man is clothed

house from heaven, or that mortality is swallowed up of life at death. Before any man says the immortal soul is thus clothed upon, he ought first to prove that

upon

with a

man has an immortal soul which exists after death. And is it rational to speak of the mortality of animmortal soul being swallowed up of life at death? But we have just as little evidence that Paul's body was raised at death, or that its mortality was swallowed up of life. Dust he was, and unto dust he returned like other mortals. That there is a germin in the human body which at death shoots forth into a spiritual body, is a theory of which there is no proof from facts, and I can find none from Scripture. Paul, in the passage, speaks in the plural, and bis expectations and desires as to a future life were not peculiar to him, but were to be enjoyed by others, and he speaks of them as well known. But was it well known, that every man at death was raised again from the dead? Peter said, David had not ascended into the heavens, in his day, and certainly Martha did not think her brother Lazarus rose the day he died, but expected his resurrection at some fulure time, which she called the last day. Nor, is it ever intimated that a single individual, at his death, was clothed upon with his house from heaven, or that then mortality was swallowed up of life. But if this doctrine be true, why are all the Scripture writers silent on the subject?

But at verse 5, Paul says God had given him and others “the earnest of the spirit.” By this they were “ sealed unto the day of redemption,” Eph. 4: 30. And he adds, ch. 1: 14, " which is the earnest of our inheritance, until the redemption of the purchased possession.” What purchased possession? The church, which Christ purchased with his own blood, Acts 20: 28. But let us ask, the redemption of the church from what? I answer, from death and the grave, Hosea 13: 14. 1 Cor. 15: 54, 55. Compare all this with Rom. 8: 22, “ For we know that ihe whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain

יי

together until now: and not only it, but ourselves also, who have the first fruits of the spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body." Redemption of it from what? Redemption of it from death and the grave, as seen, Hosea 13: 14. The earnest expectation of the whole creation, " waiteth for this manifestation of the sons of God,” Rom. 8: 19. But does the church of God obtain redemption from death and the grave at any man's death? Or is the whole creation delivered from the bondage of corruption, unto the glorious liberty of the sons of God, when every individual man dies?

But it will be said, “ does not Paul seem to intimate, that being absent from the body, was to be present with the Lord ? How could he speak as he does, if he believed he was to remain in a state of unconscious existence until the general resurrection, a much longer time than he had lived on earth ?" Answer: some meet this objection by saying, man falls asleep at death, and is awaked out of it at the resurrection at the last day. As all will be alike unconscious, to the time and events which have intervened, the transition will appear instantaneous, and in this way does Paul here speak of it. But 1 would account for his language here from a fact, which few will dispute. In scripture style, the writers often speak of things as present, yea, as even past, the more strongly to express their certainty, İsai. ch. 53, speaks of the Messiah as having suffered, died and been buried. Now, it is evident that Paul in this passage speaks with great certainty on this subject. At verse 1, he says, we know we have a building of God, an house not made with hands eternal in the heavens. At verse 6, he says. we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord."

And again, at verse 8, he says, “we are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.” In confirmation of this view, Macknight says in bis fourth Preliminary Essay, " the prelerite tenses, especially in the prophetic writings, are used for the future, to show the absolute certainty of the things spoken of." He cites the following tests in proof; Rom. 8: 30. Eph. 2: 6. Heb. 2: 7. 3: 14. 12: 22. But what is more 10 our purpose be adus-“the present tense is often put for the fuiure, to show that the thing spoken of shall as certainly happen, as if it were already present.” In proof of this he cites Matt. 3: 10. Mark 9:31. I Cor. 15: 2, 12. James 5: 3. 2 Peter 3: 11, 12. Whether this does not account for Paul's manner of speaking in this passage, we leave to the judgment of the reader.

To conclude. In Essay i. we have seen that the spirit, or life of every man returns unto God who gave it. It is laid up with Christ in God, to be restored to man in the resurrection at the last day, Hence Stephen, at his death, commended his spirit into the hands of Jesus. In view of the resurrection, all live unto God, and he is called their God, on this account, though dead. With truth then might Paul speak of being abseni from the body and present with the Lord, not only from the certainty that this should take place at the resurrection, 1 Thess. 4: 17, but as in safe keeping with him until it arrived. But, though he here contrasts his present condition with his future prospects, and expresses his feelings and desires respecting both, he gives no intimation that he expected to enjoy future happiness until “ mortality was swallowed up of life.

18

SECTION III.

Concluding remarks, addressed to Christians, Jews, and

Deists.

1st, To Christians. Supposing a Jew, deist, or pagan inclined to attend to Christianity, his first question ought to be, what is Christianity? He might say, "you have got Trinitarian Christianity, Unitarian Christianity, Socinian Christianity, and various other kinds of it. Pray which of all these kinds do you wish me to believe? Ram Mohun Roy, bas renounced heathenism and embraced Christianity, yet many of you denounce him as no Christian, because he has not believed your kind of it. Before you urge us any more to embrace Christianity, first determine among yourselves what Christianity is." You will no doubt say-let such a person sit down and examine the Scriptures for himself. This is the only course, I allow, a candid, judicious man ought to pursue; but I ask, could he ever learn from them alone, some of the dogmas, in which you maintain that the very essentials of Christianity consist? If he did not, he would be denounced by some of you as no Christian. For what I have written, it is like

will denounce me as no Christian. Well, al. lowing I am not, permit me affectionately to address you as such. I speak as to wise men, judge ye what I say. Seeing ye are wise, as a fool receive me, and bear with me in my folly whilst I expostulate with you.

The great mistake with me for many years was, and with you still is, proposing to save immortal souls from an endless hell in a future state of exist

The grounds of my change of sentiment I have laid before the world, have appealed to the

ly you

ence.

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