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is now demonstrated by fact; as we are to account for the resurrection of the body through all the various and astonishing changes which it must hereafter undergo.

And even, without having any reference to creation in the abstract, if we only recur again to the process of vegetation, which is annually exhibited to our astonished views, in all the regular and irregular stages of advancement ; with all the experience of five thousand years ;-with all the endless varieties of natural productions, imported from every

climate and every zone ;—with all the researches of philosophy ; together with all the boasted discoveries of the world, the wisest man alive can no more ultimately account for the most simple production of nature, than he can for the resurrection of our bodies, or the spirituality of them, when they shall be clothed with immortality and swallowed up in life.

The doctrine of the resurrection, amidst all those difficulties with which it is encircled, comes forth in an apparently spontaneous manner to gratify universal desire and hope. That God would protract our existence, and protect us from sickness, calamities, and pains, is a desire which seems to have been interwoven with our constitutions in our primary formation ; and is one of those motives of the human bosom which appears to have survived the fall. But, it is a desire which nothing but death, and a resurrection from his cold embrace, seem able to accomplish. There is nothing but this which can translate us into a peaceful region, where human nature shall meet a perfect renovation in all its or

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ganical and intellectual powers ;—a region, into which the body shall carry its final modification, and preserve all those essential parts, which will be necessary to its future station ;-a region, where sickness, pains, and calamities, shall be known no

more.

Whether perpetuity were added to the being of man in this life, or another is not for man to decide. God has placed our permanent state of existence beyond the grave, and has made the gloomy territory of death the passage through which we must travel in order to attain it. The dissolution of our bodies is a necessary consequence of death; and both become morally necessary froin the debilitated state of the human frame. In addition to these circumstances, when we consider the present life as a state of probation, in which we act as candidates for one of retribution; the dissolution of the body becomes a necessary part of those changes, which must fit and prepare us for that state of being, where changes and probation must be alike unknown.

Were it not for dissolution, no alteration could probably take place in our condition; and then, infirmity, and pain, and discord, must accompany us through every stage of our existence; even if immortality were here communicated to But, when we behold death, and its attendant dissolution, interposing themselves between this world and the next; we see a final period put to our emaciated frames, and we behold a scene unfolding itself, in which our bodies shall appear refined,

man.

ennobled, and exalted; and in which they shall be brought forth to inhabit a region, where all that survives of human nature shall exist in a more exalted mode, shall exhibit a state of consummate perfection, “ safe from diseases and decline."

SECT. IV.

Arguments to prove that the Resurrection of the

Body can no more take place immediately, than Seed-time and Harvest can be blended together.

It has been repeatedly asserted, in the course of this work, that death is a natural effect of moral evil; and I flatter myself that these assertions have been satisfactorily proved, in several of the preced-, ing sections. But, while the arguments which have been advanced to prove that moral evil must be destroyed, appear highly favourable to the resurrection of the body; they seem to open the door to an objection which may be stated thus.

“ If death be a natural effect of moral evil, if no natural effect can survive its cause, and moral evil be totally destroyed, the consequence must be an immediate resurrection of the body from the grave.

Specious as this objection may appear, it is one which I flatter myself will admit of a solution; it is one, indeed, which has been already anticipated, and in part already answered. For, though it has been asserted, that no natural effect can survive its cause;--that moral evil is the cause of death ;

and that moral evil must be done away; yet there are two lights in which the destruction of moral evil may be considered.

In the first place, it may be said to be destroyed in relation to individuals, the instant that death takes place upon them, and separates their souls from their bodies. For, as probation must be confined to the present state, and as those laws by which we distinguish good from evil, must be confined to that mode of being in which we are capable of obedience and transgression; a removal from this state of existence must effectually change our condition, and resolve all into retributive certainty either of punishment or reward. Whenever, therefore, this change in our condition shall take place, in an individual sense; moral evil may be said to be destroyed.

Nevertheless, in a more universal sense, moral evil inay

be said to continue, so long as the present state of things shall remain unchanged. And, consequently, though it may no longer operate upon those individuals, whose bodies are lodged in the arms of death; yet the influence of moral evil must run parallel with mortality, and occasion that death which mankind inust undergo. In this view, moral evil cannot be universally destroyed, while one mortal remains alive; and therefore the resurrection of the body cannot immediately take place.'

But, even admitting the destruction of moral evil to take place, as in the first case supposed; it will not from thence follow that the resurrection must be an immediate event. St. Paul has told us, in rela

tion to the process of vegetation, that the body which is sown, is not quickened into future life) except it die ; time therefore must evidently be necessary to the developement of the future plant, the future ear, and the future grain, which come forth in perfection when the future harvest shall commence. Since, therefore, progression becomes necessary to future completion, seed-time must necessarily precede those stages which are conducive to approaching perfection; and to suppose that harvest could blend with that condition which must necessarily be previous to it, is to make a supposition which is not only contradicted by fact, but whiclr. also involves a contradiction.

Neither will the case appear less improbable, or less absurd, if we make an application of these remarks to the resurrection of the bodies of the dead. Those portions of permanent matter in which I have presumed the identity of the body to consist, I have supposed also to be the germ of future life, which must necessarily, like the seed of some future grain, be in an embryo state, and consequently unprepared for its future habitation. Under these circumstances, the progress of time becomes necessary to call forth those latent powers which shall unfold themselves in our future bodies, so that they may be adapted to that condition of being which they must sustain for ever.

From the principles upon which I have proceeded it must be admitted, that this embryo state of our future bodies, may be in different stages of progression when deposited in the earth ; and the spe

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