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a serpent, and so hidden were his approaches to her ruin. Eve knew nothing of sin nor of its consequences, having never felt its influence nor seen its effects, and therefore, was not prepared to argue or meditate the point, with respect to an act of disobedience, but was exactly prepared to trust what God had said to her upon the subject of eating the fruit of the tree, and if she had but trusted, she would not have been deceived by the Devil.
So those persons who shall be born during the millennial state having never seen the effect of sin in any sense, may doubt whether in reality, the account of mans original fall, and of his restoration by one called Jesus Christ, is true, consequently a spirit of curiosity and disputation, accompanied with many vain surmises, about the nature of sin, and what a state of trial can signify, will prevail.
Was it not after this manner, that Satan began his temptation of the Mesiah, by endeavoring to suggest to his mind, doubts respecting the care and providence of God had over him, clse how should he now be found in a desolate wilderness, exposed to, and really feeling the pangs of hunger. From which circumstance, Satan immediately moved him to take care of himself out of the appointed way of providence, as he did Eve, or rather to do an act, as being independent of God's general Providence. Hence the Devil said to him, "If thou be the son of God, command that these stones be made bread, (Math. iv. 3.) He also tempted him to an act of presumption by way of showing himself to be the Son of God, when he said, If thou be the son of God, (which implied a feigned doubt) cast thyself down, that is from the pinnacle of the temple, or from the top of a gallery which was erected by Herod, who was a king set over the people of the Jews, by the Romans, the height of this gallery was so great that the eye of any one standing upon it, could scarcely fathom the depth beneath
Satan tempted him to covetousness and worldly ambition, when he said, all this will I give thee, referring to the kingdoms of this world which he had just then presented to his view. Also, to idolatry, when he said, if thou wilt fall down and worship me, but in all this it was not possible for Christ to be overcone of the Devil, although he had voluntarily put himself within his power to be tempted, so that in the view of all who come to God by hihi,
may be accepted as a faithful high priest. After much the same manner, we find Satan proceeded with Eve, but with greater success, for he commenced with her about eating, as he did with Christ about making the stone into bread. But when Eve had suffered mind to be led at all from the letter of the command given to her by the Creator, the first thing remarked of her in the sacred volume, is, "And the woman saw that the tree was good for food. Here, doubtless, first arose in her mind the thought that God did not deal liberally with her, else he would not have denied me the fruit of this tree, herein she doubted her Makers providence over her. Second-She was tempted to presumption when she saw the tree was good for food, and consummated that presumption by eating of its fruit. Third-She was tempted to ambition and overcome from the idea that it was a tree to make one wise, for it appears Satan had succeeded to promote in her mind a desire to become as the gods. Fourthly-She was tempted to idolatry, and consummated that crime when she had rejected the command of her God, who had said, ye shall not eat of it, and accepted of the council of the Devil who had otherwise advised her, herein she became an idolater.
From which we discover a similarity in essence between the temptation of Eve and Christ, wherefore, I think it not unreasonable to suppose that after a similar manner, Satan will advance his temptation to those who are to be tried after the Millennium.In those four points of temptation, as recounted above, namely: Distrust, Presumption, Ambition, and Idolatry, with which the Saviour was tempted,are summed up the whole catalogue of temptation, which are felt by men, and are reducible in essence, to one or the other of these four points. Hence it is said he was tempted in all points as we are. See Clark on Math. iv. upon this subject.
First-A general distrust, or doubt concerning the truth of God's grace toward a lost world, and plan of salvation as revealed in thescriptures may be the first suggestions of Satan to their minds, consequently a denial of his Providence must follow.
Second-To tempt them to acts of presumption will probably be the next expedient of Satan, which will consist in his secret opeations on their minds, urging them to the dreadful resolve of acting according to their notions of unbelief and distrust of the di
vine providence. Third-Their heart being now prepared by doubts and presumptious resolves, ambition will next urge them to desire the possession of more than the simple comforts of life, to which they had been so long accustomed, during the Millenniuum; hence an effort will be made to seize upon the effects of the saints. Fourth-Having now forsaken the law of God with which they had been so long acquainted, during the Millennium : and accepted in its stead the council of the Devil, are therein guilty of Idolatry. The operations of these principles, and progress of the temptation, will be observed by the saints, who accordingly will not fail to warn them, (for they will be their sons and daughters,) that this is the very time, when the prophecy of the Reve- . lator is to be fulfilled, and that this is the very time in which Satan. is to be loosed for a little season, and to go out into the four quarters of the globe to deceive them, and to gather them to battle against the saints, the numbers of whom are to be as the sand of the sea. They will tell them that this is the great army of Gog and Magog, upon whom God will pour down fire out of Heaven, to destroy. But for this very reproof, their anger will rise to a more vehement flame considering it mere fanaticisin, and determine them at once to destroy the whole camp of the saints in all parts of the earth and to possess their effects. But in the midst of the uproa and, din of war-like preparations to compass the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city; fire from God out of heaven will descend and devour them. Rev. xx. 9. [Referred from page 340.]
[Referred from the Introduction, page 12.]
INFIDELITY, is a term, expressive of all those principles, which draw off the adoration and service of the souls of men, from the Creator to some other object; or, as in the case of Atheists, tono object at all, which renders the heart unfilial to God: this is Infidelity.
Of these there are many kinds and sects, some of whom reverence or adore images, as of saints and martyrs-others, gods of wood, stone, iron, copper, brass, silver and gold-others, the elements, as water, earth, fire and the heavenly bodies-others, animals, as fishes, birds, beasts, serpents and the persons of men, as Heroes, Popes, grand Lamas and Mahomet. All of whom, more or less, in their progress and attempts at celebrity, have
marked their way with blood shed; some of whom continue to do so, till the present time, as in the case of the Turks, who of all others seem to have imbibed principles the most sanguinary and immoveable, received from their imposter prophet, Mahomet.These infidels have continued their ravages, and slaughter of mankind, more or less, for about twelve hundred years; and at this time hold a most fearful eminence among the nations of the earth. Their empire embraces a portion of ASIA, EUROPE, and AFRICA, whose numbers amount to many millions.
But against Christian nations and individuals, their most vehement rancour and malice seems to be aimed; indeed with them it is a virtue of the first order to afflict and destroy all such as are not Musselmen; and to die in battle is a sure passport to Mahomets paradise.
From this evil root, has arisen, the excessive cruelties practised by the Turks. But perhaps the period for this infidel power-this Tyger among the nations is now come, when he shall begin to be broken, to be shorn of his strength, and terrors.
Perhaps the late successful attack of the three combined powers, RUSSIA, FRANCE and ENGLAND upon the Turks in Europe is the prelude to the fullfilment of the Revelators prophecy respecting the great battle of Armageddon. See Rev. xvi.16, "And he gathered them together into a place called in the Hebrew tongue, Armageddon,' ," "And the seventh Angel poured out his vial into the air, and there came a great voice out of the temple of Heaven, from the throne saying it is done,”- "And there was voices and thunderings and lightnings, and there was a great earthquake, such as was not since men were upon the earth; so mighty an earthquake and so great," Which doubtless signifies convulsions, revolutions, and changes among the nations of the earth, greater than has ever yet been effected, which will follow in the consequences of this war. "And the great city was divided into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell."
Observe the surprising agreement which exists between this prophecy, (And the great city was divided into three parts,) and the fact which has recently transpired respecting the war commenced upon the Turks, by the three above noticed powers, who have destroyed the whole Turkish fleet, and have doubtless agreed to conquer and to divide the empire among themselves; which
if effected, will be dividing the great city, or empire of the Turks into three parts, to which I am much inclined to think the prophecy refers; for this is the period for the commenceinent of the outpouring of the seventh vial of plagues. But great and long will be the struggle. The Infidel powers, whether of Turks or others, may all finally be drawn into this great and last battle; that of Armageddon, which is to take place before the Millennium, when the "cities of the nations shall fall," and the Christian cause prevail, and the powers of despotism and infidelity come down to rise no more.