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18 And the LORD God said, It is not good that the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; the man should be alone; "I will make him an help but for Adam there was not found an help meet for 'meet for him.
him. 19 And out of the ground the LORD God formed 21 And the LORD God caused a Pdeep sleep to every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air ; fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of and brought them unto Adamt to see what he his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof. would call them: and whatsoever Adam called 22 And the rib which the LORD God had taken every living creature, that was the name thereof. from man, made che a woman, and brought her
20 And Adam gave #names to all cattle, and to unto the man. n I Cor. 11. 9. 1 Tim. 2. 13. as before him. o P. 8. 6. or, the man.
1 called. p c. 15. 12. S builded. 9 Prov. 18. 22. attend it." [3.] This was threatened as the immediate conse- yet even before Eve was created, we do not find that he comquence of sin, In the day thou eatesl, thou shalt die, that is, plained of being alone, knowing that he was not alone, for the “Thou shalt become mortal and capable of dying, the grant of Father was with him. Those that are most satisfied in God immortality shall be recalled, and that defence shall depart from and his favour, are in the best way, and in the best frame, to thee. Thou shalt become obnoxious to death, like a condemned receive the good things of this life, and shall be sure of them, as malefactor that is dead in law;" (only because Adam was to far as Infinite Wisdoin sees good. be the root of mankind, he was reprieved ;)" nay, the harbin
II. An instance of the creatures' subjection to man, and his gers and forerunners of death shall immediately seize thee, and dominion over them, v. 19, 20. Every beast of the field, and thy life thenceforward shall be a dying life;" and this surely ; every fowl of the air, God brought to Adam; either by the miit is a settled rule, the soul that sinneth, it shall die. (2.) Adam nistry of angels, or by a special instinct, directing them to come is tried with a positive law, not to eat of the fruit of the tree of to man as their master, teaching the ox betimes to know his knowledge. Now it was very proper to make trial of his obe- owner. Thus God gave man livery and seisin of the fair dience by such a command as this, (1.) Because the reason of estate he had granted him, and put him in possession of his it is fetched purely from the will of the Lawmaker. Adam dominion over the creatures. God brought them to him, that had in his nature an aversion to that which was evil in itself, he might name them, and so might give, 1. A proof of his and therefore he is tried in a thing which was evil, only because knowledge, as a creature endued with the facultjes both of it was forbidden; and being in a small thing, it was the more reason and speech, and so, taught more than the beasts of the fit to prove his obedience by. (2.) Because the restraint of it is earth, and male wiser than the fowls of heaven, Job 35. 11. And, laid upon the desires of the flesh and of the mind, which, in the 2. A proof of his power. It is an act of authority to impose corrupt nature of man, are the two great fountains of sin. This names, (Dan. 1. 7,) and of subjection to receive them. The prohibition checked both his appetite towards sensitive delights inferior creatures did now, as it were, do homage to their prince and his ambition of curious knowledge; that his body might at his inauguration, and swear fealiy and allegiance to him. be ruled by his soul, and his soul by his God.
If Adam had continued faithful to his God, we may suppose Thus easy, thus happy, was man in his state of innocency, the creatures themselves would so well have known and rehaving all that heart could wish to make him so. How good membered the names Adam now gave them, as to have come was God to him! How many favours did he load him with! at his call, at any time, and answered to their names. God How easy were the laws he gave him! How kind the covenant gave names to the day and night, to the firmament, to the earth, he made with him! Yet man, being in honour, understood not and sea ; and he calleth the stars by their names, to show that he is his own interest, but soon became as the beasts that perish. the supreme Lord of these ; but he gave Adam leave to name
V. 18—20. Here we have, I. An instance of the Creator's the beasts and fowls, as their subordinate lord; for, having care of man, and his fatherly concern for his comfort, v. 18. made him in his own image, he thus puts some of his honour
Though God had let him know that he was a subject, by giving upon him. him a command, v. 16, 17, yet here he lets him know also, for III. An instance of the creatures' insufficiency to be a haphis encouragement in his obedience, that he was a friend, and piness for man : but among them all, for Adam there was riot a favourite, and one whose satisfaction he was tender of. Ob- found a help meet for him. Some make these to be the words serve,
of Adam himself; observing all the creatures come to him by 1. How God graciously pitied his solitude ; It is not good couples to be named, he thus intimates his desire to his Maker. that man, this man, should be alone. Though there was an upper “Lord, these have all helps meet for them; but what shall I world of angels, and a lower world of brutes, and he between do? Never, never a one, for me." It is rather God's judgthem, yet there being none of the same nature and rank of ment upon the review. He brought them all together, to see beings with himself, none that he could converse familiarly with, if there were ever a suitable match for Adain in any of the he might be truly said to be alone. Now he that made him, zumerous families of the inferior creatures; but there was knew both him and what was good for him, better than he did Observe here, 1. The dignity and excellency of the himself, and he said, “ It is not good that he should continue human nature; on earth there was not its like, nor its peer to thus alone.”.(1.) It is not for his comfort; for man is a sociable be found among all visible creatures ; they were all looked creature, it is a pleasure to him to exchange knowledge and over, but it could not be matched among them all. 2. The affection with those of his own kind, to inform and to be vanity of this world and the things of it; put them all together, informed, to love and to be beloved. What God here says of and they will not make a help meet for man. They will not the first man, Solomon says of all men, (Ec. 4. 9, &c.) that suit the nature of his soul, nor supply its needs, nor satisfy its two are better than one, and wo to him that is alone. If there just desires, nor run parallel with its never-failing duration. were but one man in the world, what a melancholy man must God creates a new thing to be a help meet for man--not so he needs be! Perfect solitude would turn a paradise into a much the woman, as the Seed of the woman. desert, and a palace into a dungeon. Those therefore are foolish V. 21-25. Here we have, who are selfish, and would be placed alone in the earth. (2.) It I. The making of the woman, to be a help meet for Adam. is not for the increase and continuance of his kind ; God could This was done upon the sixth day, as was also the placing of have made a world of men, at first, to replenish the earth, as he Adam in Paradise, though it is here mentioned after an account replenished heaven with a world of angels : but the place would of the seventh day's rest; but what was said in general, (ch, have been too straight for the designed number of men to live 1.27,) that God made man male and female, is more distinctly together at once ; therefore God saw fit to make up that num- related here. Observe, ber by a succession of generations, which, as God had formed 1. That Adam was first formed, then Eve, (1 Tim. 2. 13,) man, must be from two, and those male and female ; one will and she was made of the man, and for the man, (1 Cor. 11.8, be ever one.
9,) all which are urged there as reasons for the humility, mo2. How God graciously resolved to provide society for him. desty, silence, and submissiveness, of that sex in general, and The result of this reasoning concerning him was, this kind particularly the subjection and reverence which wives owe to resolution, I will make a help meet for him ; a help like him, iheir own husbands. Yet man being made last of the crea(so some read it,) one of the same nature, and the same rank tures, as the best and most excellent of all, Eve's being made of beings; a help near him, (so others,) one to cohabit with after Adam, and out of him, puts an honour upon that sex, as him, and to be always at hand; a help before him, (so others,) the glory of the man, 1 Cor. 11. 7. If man is the head, she one that he should look upon with pleasure and delight. Note is the crown ; a crown to her husband, the crown of the visible hence, (1.). That in our best state in this world, we have need creation. The man was dust refined, but the woman was dust of one another's help; for we are members one of another, and double-refined, one remove further from the earth. the eye cannot say to the hand, I have no necd of thee, 1 Cor. 12. 2. That Adam slept while his wife was in making, that no 21. We must therefore be glad to receive help from others, and room might be left to imagine that he had herein directed the give help to others, as there is occasion. (2.) That it is God spirit of the Lord, or been his counsellor, Is. 40. 13. He had been only who perfectly knows our wants, and is perfectly able to made sensible of his want of a meet help; but God having supply them all, Phil. 4. 19. In him alone our help is, and from undertaken to provide him one, he does not afflict himself with him are all our helpers. (3.) That a suitable wife is a help any care about it, but lies down and sleeps sweetly, as one that meet, and is from the Lord. The relation is then likely to be had cast all his care on God, with a cheerful resignation of comfortable, when meetness directs and determines the choice, himself and all his affairs, to bis Maker's will and wisdom; and mutual helpfulness is the constant care and endeavour, 1 Jehovah-jireh, let the Lord provide when and whom he pleases. Cor. 7. 33, 34. (4.) That family society, if that is agreeable, If we graciously rest in God, God will graciously work for us, is a redress sufficient for the grievance of solitude. He that and work all for good. has a good God, a good heart, and a good wife, to converse with, 3. That God caused a sleep to fall on Adam, and made it a and yet complains he wants conversation, would not have been deep sleep, that so the opening of bis side might be no grieeasy and content in paradise ; for Adam himself had no more :/ vance to him; while he knows no sin, God will take care he
a Rev. 12. 9.
23 And Adam said, This is now bone of my
torbed, and its beauty stained and rullied, all bad, very bad. How is the gold
become dim, and the most fine gold changed ! O that our hearts were deeply bones, "and Aesh of my flesh: she shall be called affected with this record! Für we are all carly concerne in it; let it not be to
us as a tale that is told. The general contents of this chapter we bave, Rom. 5. *Woman, because she was taken out of't Man.
12. By one man sin entered inio the roorld, and death by sin, and so denih 24 Therefore shall a man leave shis father and passed upon all men, for that all have sinned. More particularly, we have
here, 1. 'i'be innocent tempted, v.1--5. 11. The temples transgressing, v. 6-8. his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they III. The transgressors arraigned, v.9, 10. IV. Up their arraignment, coc
victed, v. 11-13. V. Up their conviction, Bentenced, v. 11-19. VI. Alter shall be one flesh.
sentence, reprieved, v, 20, 21. VII. Notwithstanding their reprieve, execution in 25 And they were both naked, the man and his part done, v. 22–2. And were it not for the gracious intimatiouns here given of
redemption by the promised Seed, they, and all their degenerate guilly race, had wife, and were not ashamed.
been lell to endless despair. CHAPTER III.
NOW the “serpent was more bsubtle than any The story of this chapter is perhaps as sad a story (all things considered) as any we beast of the field which the LORD God had of the holiness and tappiness of our first parents, the grace and favour of Cient, and made. And he said unto the woman, *Yea, hath the peace and beauty of the whole creation, all goal, very gond: but here fille God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garpareuls, the wrath and curse of Gol agaibat them, the peace of the creation dis- den? Eph. 5. 30. • Isha. † leh. Mark 10. 7.
b 2 Cor. 11.3. yes,
because, $c. shall seel no pain. When God, by his providence, does that any cause, but fornication, or voluntary desertion. 5. See w his people, which is grievous to Hesh and blood, he not only how dear the affection ought to be between husband and wife ; consulis their happiness in the issue, but, by his grace,
such as there is to our own bodies, Eph. 5. 28. They two are so quiet and compose their spirits, as to make them easy under one flesh; let them then be one soul. the sharpest operations,
IV. An evidence of the purity and innocency of that state 4. That the woman was made of a rib out of the side of Adam; wherein our first parents were created, v. 25. They were both not made out of his head to top him, nor out of his feet to be naked: they needed no clothes for defence against cold or heat, trampled upon by him, but out of his side to be equal with him, for neither could be injurious to them; they needed none for under his arm to be protected, and near his heart to be beloved. ornament, Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of Adam lost a rib, and without any diminution to his strength or these; nay, they needed none for decency, they were naked, comeliness; for doubtless, the flesh was closed without a scar, and had no reason to be ashamed ; They knew not what shame but, in lieu thereof, he had a help meet for him, which abun- was, so the Chaldee reads it. Blushing is now the colour of dantly made up his loss: what God takes away from his peo- virtue, but it was not then the colour of innocency. They that ple, he will, one way or other, restore with advantage. In this, had no sin in their conscience, might well have no shame in (as in many other things,) Adam was a figure of him that was their faces, though they had no clothes to their backs. to come ; for out of the side of Christ, the second Adam, his
NOTES, spouse the Church was formed, when he slept the sleep, the CHAP. III, V. 1-5. We have here an account of the deep sleep, of death upon the cross; in order to which, his side templation with which Satan assaulted our first parents, to draw was opened, and there came out blood and water, blood to pur- them to sin, and which proved fatal to thein. And here observe, chase his church, and water to purify it to himself. See Eph. 1. The tempter, and that was the Devil, in the shape and 5. 25, 26.
likeness of a serpent. II. The marriage of the woman to Adam. Marriage is 1. It is certain it was the Devil that beguiled Eve, the Devil honourable, but this surely was the most honourable marriage and Satan is the old serpent, Rev. 12. 9, a nalignant spirit, by that ever was, in which God himself had all along an immedi- creation an angel of light, and an immediate attendant upon ate hand. Marriages (they say) are made in heaven: we are God's throne; but by sin become an apostate from his first state, sure this was; for the man, the woman, the match, were all and a rebel against God's crown and dignity. Multitudes of God's own work: he, by his power, made them both, and now, them fell; but this that attacked our first parents, was surely the by his ordinance, made them one. This was a marriage made prince of the devils, the ringleader in rebellion: no sooner in perfect innocency, and so was never any marriage since. was he a sinner than he was a Satan, no sooner a traitor than
i. God, as her Father, brought the woman to the man, as his a tempter, as one enraged against God and his glory, and envisecond self, and a help meet for him; when he had made her, ous of man and his happiness. He knew he could not destroy he did not leave her to her own disposal; no, she was his child, man, but by debauching him. Balaam could not curse Israel, and she must not marry without his consent. Those are likely but he could tempt Israel, Rev. 2. 14. The game therefore to settle to their comfort, who, by faith and prayer, and a hum- which Satan had to play, was to draw our first parents to sin, ble dependence upon Providence, put themselves under a divine and so to separate between them and their God. Thus the conduct, That wife that is of God's making by special grace, Devil was, from the beginning, a murderer, and the great misand of God's bringing by special providence, is likely to prove chief-maker. The whole race of mankind had here, as it were, a help meet for a man.
but one neck, and at that Satan struck. The adversary and 2. From God, as his Father, Adam received her, v. 23. enemy is that wicked one. “This is nou bone of my bone ; Now I have what I wanted, 2. It was the Devil in the likeness of a serpent. Whether. and which all the creatures could not furnish me with, a help it was only the visible shape and appearance of a serpent, as meet for me." God's gifts to us are to be received with a hum- some think those were of which we read, Ex. 7. 12, or whether ble thankful acknowledgment of his wisdom in suiting them it was a real living serpent, actuated and possessed by the Devil, to us, and his favour in bestowing them on us. Probably it is not certain ; by God's permission it might be either. The was revealed to Adam in a vision, when he was asleep, that Devil chose to act his part in a serpent, (1.) Because it is a this lovely creature, dow presented to him, was a piece of him-specious creature, has a spotted dappled skin, and then went self, and was to be his companion, and the wife of his covenant. erect. Perhaps it was a flying serpent, which seemed to come Hence some have fetched an argument to prove that glorified from on high as a messenger from the upper world, one of the saints in the heavenly paradise shall know one another. Fur-Seraphim; for the fiery surpents were flying, Is. 14.29. Many ther, in token of his acceptance of her, he gave her a name, not a dangerous temptation comes to us in gay fine colours that are peculiar to her, bait common to her sex; she shall be called but skin-deep, and seems to come from above ; for Satan can woman, Isha, i she-man, differing from man in sex only, not in seem an angel of light. And, (2.) Because it is a subtle creanature; made of man, and joined to man.
that is here taken notice of. Many instances are given III. The institution of the ordinance of marriage, and the of the subtlety of the serpent, both to do mischief, and to secure settling of the law of it, v. 24. The sabbath and marriage himself in it when it is done. We are bid to be wise as serwere two ordinances instituted in innocency; the former for the pents. But this serpent, as actuated by the Devil, no doubt, preservation of the church, the latter for the preservation of was more subtle than any other; for the Devil, though he has the world of mankind. It appears by Matt. 19, 4, 5, that it lost the sanctity, reiains the sagacity, of an angel, and is wise was God himself who said here, " A man must leave all his to do evil. He knew of more advantage by making use of the relations, to cleave to his wife;" but whether he spake it by serpent, than we are aware of. Observe, There is not any Moses, the penman, or by Adam, who spake, v. 23. is uncer-thing by which the Devil serves himself and his own interest tain; it should seem, they are the words of Adam, in God's more than by unsanctified subtlety. What Eve thought of this name, laying down this law to all his posterity. 1. See here serpent speaking to her, we are not likely to tell, when I believe how great the virtue of a divine ordinance is; the bonds of it she herself did not know what to think of it. At first, perhaps, are eronges even than those of nature. * To whom can we be she supposed it might be a good angel, and yet, afterward, might more firmly bound than to the fathers that begat us, and the suspect something amiss. It is remarkable that the Gentile mothers that bare us? Yet the son must quit them, to be idolaters did many of them worship the Devil in the shape and joined to hija wife, and the daughter forget them, to cleave to form of a serpent ; thereby avowing their adherence io that her husband, Ps. 45. 10, 11. 2. See how necessary it is that apostate spirit, and wearing biis colours. children should take their parents' consent along with them in II. The person tempted was the woman, now alone, and at their marriage ; and how unjust they are to their parents, as distance from her husband, but near the forbidden tree. It was well as undntiful, if they marry without it; for they rob them the Devil's subtlety, 1. To assault the weaker vessel with luis of their right to them, and interest in them, and alienare it to temptations; though perfect in her kind, yet we may suppose another, fraudulently and unnaturally. 3. See what need there her inferior to Adam in knowledge, and strength, and presence is both of prudence and prayer in the choice of this relation, of mind. Some think Eve received the command not immediwhich is so near and so lasting. That had need be well done, ately from God, but ai second hand by her husband, and therewhich is to be done for life. 4, Sce how firm the bond of mar' fore might the more easily be persuaded to discredit it. 2. It riage in, not to be divided and weakened by having many was his policy to enter into discourse with her, when she was wives, (Mal. 2, 15,) nor to be broken or cut off by divorce, for I alone. Had she kept close to the side out of which she was VOL. 1.-5
( 33 )
2 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may 4 And the serpent dsaid unto the 'woman, Ye eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:
shall not surely die : 3 But of the fruit of the tree which is in the 5 For God doth know that in the day ye eat midst of the garden, God hath said, “Ye shall not thereof, then your eyes shall be opened ; and ye eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die. shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.
lately taken, she had not been so much exposed. There are taste not, handle not,) but to make a fence about it: “ We must
ring of a penalty, v. 4. Ye shall not surely die. “Ye shall III. The temptation itself, and the artificial management of not dying die,” so the word is, in direct contradiction to what it. We are often, in scripture, told of our danger by the tempta- God had said. Either, (1.) " It is not certain that ye shall tions of Satan; his devices, 2 Cor. 2. 11; his depths, Rev.2: die;" so some. “It is not so sure as ye are made to believe it 24 ; his wiles, Eph. 6. 11. The greatest instances we have of is.' Thus Satan endeavours to shake that which he cannot them, were in his tempting of the two Adams, here, and Matt. overthrow, and invalidates the force of divine threatenings by
In this, he prevailed; but in that, he was battled. What questioning the certainty of them; and when once it is supposed he spake to them of whoin he had no hold by any corruption in possible that there may be falsehood or fallacy in any word of them, he speaks in us by our own deceitful hearts and their car- God, a door is then opened to downright infidelity. Satan nal reasonings, which makes his assaults on us less discernible, teaches men first to doubt, and then to deny; he makes skeptics but not less dangerous. That which the Devil aimed at, was first, and so by degrees makes them atheists. Or, (2.) “ It is to persuade Eve to eat forbidden fruit; and, to do this, he took certain ye shall not die," so others. He avers his contradiction the same method that he does still. 1. He questions whether with the same phrase of assurance that God hath used in ratiit were a sin or no, v. 1. 2. He denies that there was any fying the threatening. He began to call the precept in question, danger in it, v. 4. 3. He suggests much advantage by it, v. 5. v. 1, but finding that the woman adhered to that, he quitted that And these are his common topics.
battery, and made his second onset upon the threatening, where 1. He questions whether it were a sin or no, to eat of this he perceived her to waver; for he is quick to spy all advantages, tree, and whether really the fruit of it were forbidden. Yea; and to attack the wall where it is weakest, Ye shall not surely hath God said, Ye shall not eat? The first word intimated die. This was a lie, a downright lie ; for, (1.) It was contrary something said before, introducing this, and with which it is to the word of God, which we are sure is true; see 1 John 2. connected; perhaps some discourse Eve had with herself, 21,27. It was such a lie as gave the lie to God himself. [2.] It which Satan took hold of, and grafted this question upon. In was contrary to his own knowledge; when he told them there the chain of thoughts, one thing strangely brings in another, was no danger in disobedience and rebellion, he said that which and perhaps something bad at last. Observe here, (1.) He he knew, by woful experience, to be false. He had broken the does not discover his design at first, but puts a question which law of his creation, and had found, to his cost, that he could not seemed innocent; “I hear a piece of news, pray, is it true ; prosper in it; and yet he tells our first parents they shall not has God forbidden you to cal of this tree?" .Thus he would die. He conceals his own misery, that he might draw them into begin a discourse, and draw her into a parley. Those that the like: thus he still deceives sinners into their own ruin. He would be safe, have need to be suspicious, and shy of talking tells them, though they sin they shall not die ; and gains credit with the tempier. (2.) He quotes the command fallaciously, as rather than God, who tells them, The wages of sin is death. if it were a prohibition, not only of that tree, but of all; God Now hope of impunity is a great support to all iniquity, and had said, of every tree ye may cat, except one. He, by aggra- impenitence in it: I shall have peace, though I walk in the imagivating the exception, endeavours to invalidate the concession; nation of my heart, Deut. 29. 19. Hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree? The divine 3. He promises them advantage by it, v. 5. Here he follows law cannot be reproached, unless it be first misrepresented. (3.) his blow, and it was a blow at the root, a fatal blow to the tree He seems to speak it tauntingly, upbraiding the woman with we are branches of. He not only would undertake they should her shyness of meddling with thai tree; as if he had said, be no losers by it, thus binding himself to save them from harm; "You are so nice and cautious, and so very precise, because but (if they would be such fools as to venture upon the security God has said, Ye shall not eat.' The Devil, as he is a liar, of one that was himself become a bankrupt) he undertakes they so he is a scoffer, from the beginning; and the scoilers of the shall be gainers by it, unspeakable gainers. He could not have last days are his children. (4.) That which he aimed at in the persuaded them to run the hazard of ruining themselves, if he first onset, was 10 take off her sense of the obligation of the had not suggested to them a great probability of mending themcommand. “Surely, you are mistaken, it cannot be that God selves. should tje you out from this tree; he would not do so unreason (1.) He insinuates to them the great improvements they able a thing." See here, That it is the subtlety of Satan to ble- would make by eating of this fruit. And he suits the temptamish the reputation of the divine law, as uncertain, or unrea- tion to the pure state they were now in, proposing to them, not sonable, and so to draw people to sin ; and that it is therefore any carnal pleasures or gratifications, but intellectual delights our wisdom to keep up a firm belief of, and a high respect for and satisfactions. These were the baits with which he covered the command of God. Has God said, “Ye shall noi lie, nor his hook. (1.) “ Your eyes shall be opened ; you shall have much take his name in vain, nor be drunk, &c.?” “ Yes, I am sure more of the power and pleasure of contemplation than now you ho has, and it is well said, and by his grace I will abide by it, have ; you shall fetch a larger compass in your intellectual views, whatever the tempter suggests to the contrary.".
and see farther into things than now you do." He speaks as Now, in answer to this question, the woman gives him a plain if now they were but dim-sighted, and short-sighted, in compaand full account of the law thay were under, v. 2, 3. Where rison of what they would be then. (2.) “ You shall be as gods, observe, [1.] It was her weakness to enter into discourse with
as Elohim, mighty gods; not only omniscient, but omnipotent the serpent : she might have perceived by his question, that he 100:"or, " You shall be as God himself, equal to him, rivals had no good design, and should therefore have started back with with him ; you shall be sovereigns, and no longer subjects ; a Get thee behind me, Satan, thou art an offence to me. But her self-sufficient, and no longer depending." A most absurd sugcuriosity, and perhaps her surprise, to hear a serpent speak, led gestion! As if it were possible for creatures of yesterday to be her into further talk with him. Note, It is a dangerous thing like their Creator that was from eternity. [3.] “You shall to treat with a temptation, which ought at first to be rejected know good and evil, that is, every thing that is desirable to be with disdain and abhorrence. The garrison that sounds a parley, known.” To support this part of the temptation, he abuses the is not far from being surrendered. Those that would be kept name given to this tree : it was intended to teach the practical from harm, must keep out of harm's way. See Prov. 14. 7.- knowledge of good and evil, that is, of duty and disobedience; 19. 27. (2.) It was her wisdom to take notice of the liberty God and it would prove the erperimental knowledge of good and evil, had granted them, in answer to his sly insinuation, as if God that is, of happiness and misery. In these senses, the name of had put them into paradise, only to tantalize them with the sight the tree was a warning to them not to eat of it ; bui he perverts of fair but forbidden fruits. “Yea," says she, “wo may eat the sense of it, and wrests it to their destruction, as if this tree of the fruit of the trees, thanks to our Maker, we have plenty would give them a speculative notional knowledge of the natures, and variety enough allowed us." Note, To prevent our being kinds, and originals, of good and evil. And, [4.] All this preuneasy at the restraints of religion, it is gond often to take a sently ; - In the day we cat
thereof, you will find a sudden and view of the liberties and comforts of it. [3.] It was an instance immediate change for the better. : Now in all these insinuaof her resolution, that she adhered to the command, and faith- tions, he aims to beget in them, First, Discontent with their fully repeated it, as of unquestionable certainty, “God hath present state, as if it were not so good as it might be, and said, I am confident he hath said it, Ye shall not eat of the fruit should be. Note, No condition will of itself bring contentment, of this tree;" and that which she adds, Neilker shall ye louch it, unless the mind be brought to it. Adam was not easy, no not seems to have been with a good intention, not (as some think) in paradise, nor the angels in their first state, Jude 6. Secondly, tacitly to reflect upon the cominand as too strict, (Touch not, I Ambition of preferment, as if they were fit to be gods. Satan
• a desire.
6 And when the woman saw that the tree was 7 And the eyes of them both were opened, and good for food, and that it was pleasant* to the eyes, they knew that they were naked :/ and they sewed and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took tig-leaves together, and made themselves laprons. of the fruit thereot, and did eat; and gave also 8 And they heard the voice of the LORD God unto her husband with her, and he did eat.
walking in the garden in the icool of the day: and I c. 2. 25.
1 or, things to gird about. haid ruined himself by desiring to be like the Most High, Is. in those fiery darts which pierce and poison the heart. The 14. 14, and therefore seeks to infect our first parents with the eye atfects the heart with guilt as well as grief. Let us same desire, that he might ruin them too.
therefore, with holy Job, make a covenant with our eyes, not (2.) He insinuates to them that God had no good design to look on that which we are in danger of lusting after, Prov. upon them in forbidding them this fruit. “For God doth know 23. 31. Matt. 5. 28. Let the fear of God be always to us for how much it will advance you ; and therefore, in envy and a covering of the eyes, ch. 20. 16. ill-will to you, he bath forbidden it:" as if he durst not let 2. She took : it was her own act and deed. The Devil did thein eat of that tree, because then they would know their not take it, and put it into her mouth, whether she would or own strength, and would not continue in an inferior state, but no; but she herself took it. Satan may tempt, but he cannot be able to cope with him ; or as if he grudged them the force; may persuade us to cast ourselves down, but he cannot honour and happiness which their eating of that tree would cast us down, Matt. 4. 6. Eve's taking was stealing, like prefer them lo. Now, (1.) This was a great affront to God, Achan's taking the accursed thing, taking that which she had and the highest indignity that could be done him; a reproach no right to. Surely, she took it with a trembling hand. to his power, as if he feared his creatures ; and much more a 3. She did eat: when she looked, perhaps she did not intend reproach to his goodness, as if he hated the work of his own to tako, or when she took, not to eat; but it ended in that. hand and would not have those whom he has made, to be Note, The way of sin is down-hill; a man cannot stop himmade happy. Shall the best of men think it strange to be self when he will: the beginning of it is as the breaking forth misrepresented and evil spoken of, when God himself is so? of water, to which it is hard to say, Hitherto thou shalt come Satan, as he is the aecuser of the brethren before God, so he and no further:" Therefore it is our wisdom to suppress the accuses God before the brethren; thus he sows discord, and is first motions of sin, and to leave it off, before it be ineddled the father of them that do so. (2.) It was a most dangerous with. Obsta principis-Nip mischief in the bud. snare to our first parents, as it tended to alienate their affcc 4. She gave also to her husband with her : it is probable that Lions from God, and so to withdraw them from their allegiance he was not with her when she was tempted; surely if he had, to him. Thus still the Devil draws people into his interest by he would have interposed to prevent the sin; but he came to suggesting to them hard thoughts of God, and false hopes of her when she had eaten, and was prevailed with by her to eat benefit and advantage by sin. Let us therefore, in opposition likewise ; for it is easier to learn that which is bad, than to to him, always think well of God as the best good, and think teach that which is good. She gave it to him, persuading hiin ill of sin as the worst of evils: thus let us resist the Devil, with the same arguments that the serpent had used with her, and he will flee from us.
adding this to all the rest, that she herself had eaten of it, and V.6-8. Here we see what Eve's parley with the tempter found it so far from being deadly, that it was extremely pleaended in ; Satan, at length, gains his point, and the strong sant and grateful : stolen waters are sweet. She gave it to him, hold is taken by his wiles. God tried the obedience of our under colour of kindness; she would not eat these delicious first parents by forbidding them the tree of knowledge, and morsels alone; but really it was the greatest unkindness she Satan does, as it were, join issue with God, and in that very could do him. Or perhaps she gave it to him, that if it should thing undertakes to seduce them into a transgression; and prove hurtful, he might share with her in the misery ; which here we find how he prevailed, God permitting it for wise and indeed looks strangely unkind, and yet may, without difficulty, holy ends.
be supposed to enter into the heart of one that had eaten forI. We have here the inducements that moved them to trans- bidden fruit. Note, Those that have themselves done ill, are gress. The woman being deceived by the tempter's artful commonly willing to draw in others to do the same. management, was ringleader in the transgression, 1 Tim. 2. the Devil, so was Eve, no sooner a sinner than a tempter. 14. She was first in the fauls; and it was the result of her 5. He did eat, overcome by his wife's importunity. It is consideration, or rather, her inconsideration.
needless to ask, " What would have been the consequence, if 1. She saw no harm in this tree, more than in any of the Eve only had transgressed ?” The wisdom of God, we are rest. It was said of all the rest of the fruit-trees with which sure, would have decided the difficulty according to equity; the garden of Eden was planted, that they were pleasant to the but, alas, the case was not so ; Adam also did eat. sight, and good for food, ch. 2. 9. Now, in her eye, this was what great harm if he did ?" say the corrupt and carnal realike all the rest ; it seemed as good for food as any of them, sonings of a vain mind. What harm? Why, there was in it and she saw nothing in the colour of its fruit, that threatened disbelief of God's word, together with confidence in the Devil's; death or danger; it was as pleasant to the sight as any of discontent with his present state; pride in his own merits; an them, and therefore, “ What hurt could it do to them? Why ambition of the honour which comes not from God; envy at should this be forbidden them rather than any of the rest ? God's perfections; and indulgence of the appetites of the body. Note, When there is thought to be no more harm in forbidden In neglecting the tree of life which he was allowed to eat fruit than in other fruit, sin lies at the door, and Satan soon of, and eating of the tree of knowledge which was forbidden, carries the day. Nay, perhaps, it seemed to her to be better he plainly showed a contempt of the favours God had beo for food, more grateful to the taste, and more nourishing to the stowed on him, and a preference given to those God did not body, than any of the rest, and to her eye it was more pleasant see fit for him. He would be both his own carver, and his own than any. We are often betrayed into spares by an inordinate master; would have what he pleased, and do whai he pleased: desire to have our senses gratified. Or, if it had nothing in it his sin was, in one word, disobedience, Rom. 5. 19; disobedimore inviting than the rest, yet it was the more coveted, be-ence to a plain, easy, and expross command, which, probably, cause it was prohibited. Whether it were so in her or not, he knew to be a command of trial. He sins against great we find that in us, that is, in our flesh, in our corrupt nature, knowledge, against many mercies, against light and love, the there dwells a strange spirit of contradiction, Nitimur in veti- clearest light, and the dearest love, that ever sinner sinned tam-We desire what is prohibited.
against. He had no corrupt nature within him to betray him; 2. She imagined more virtue in this tree than in any of the but had a freedom of will, not enslaved, and was in his fuli rest; that it was a tree not only not to be dreaded, but to be strength, not weakened or impaired. He turned aside quickly. deared to make one wise, and therein excelling all the rest of Some think he fell the very day on which he was made : though the trees. This she suo, that is, she perceived and understood I see not how to reconcile thai with God's pronouncing all very it by what the Devil had said to her, and some think that she good, in the close of that day: others suppose he fell on the kaw the serpent eat of that tree, and that he told her he thereby sabbath-day; the better day, the worse deed: however, it is had gained the faculties of speech and reason, whence she certain that he kept his integrity but a very little while; being inferred its power to make one wise, and was persuaded to in honour, he continued not. But the greatest aggravation of think, “If it made a brute creature rational, why might it not his sin was, that he involved all his posterity in sin and ruin make a rational creature divine ?" See here how the desire by it. God having told him that his race should replenish the of unnecessary knowledge, under the mistaken notion of wis earth, surely he could not but know that he stood as a public dom, proves hurtful and destructive to many. Our first parents, person, and that his disobedience would be fatal to all his seed; who knew so much, did not know this, that they knew enough. and if so, it was certainly the greatest treachery, as well as Christ is a tree to be desired to make one wise, (Col. 2. 3. the greatest cruelty, that ever was. The human nature being 1 Cor. 1.50.) Let us, by faith, feed upon him, that we may lodged entirely in our first parents, from henceforward it could be wise lo salvation. In the heavenly paradise, the tree of not but be transmitted from them under an attainder of guilt, a knowledge will not be a forbidden tree; for there, we shall stain of dishonour, and an hereditary disease of sin and corknow as we are known; let us therefore long to be there, and, ruption. And can we say, then, that Adam's sin had but little in the mean time, not exercise ourselves in things too high, or harm in it? too deep for us, nor covet to be wise above what is written. III. The immediate consequences of the transgression.
II. The steps of the transgression; not steps upward, but Shame and fear seized the criminals, ipso facto—in the fact downward towards the pit-steps that took hold on hell. itself; these came into the world along with sin, and still
1. She saw : she should have turned away her eyes from aitend it, beholding vanity; but she enters into temptation, by looking 1. Shame seized them unseen, v. 7, where observe, with pleasure ou the forbidden fruit. Observe, A great deal (1.) The strong convictions they fell under, in their own of sin comes in at the eye. At those windows Satan Chrows | bosoms; The eyes of them both were opened. It is not meant
Adam and his wife shid themselves from the presence 10 And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, of the Lord God, among the trees of the garden. and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid
9 And the Lord God called unto Adam, and myself. said unto him, Where art thou ?
11 And he said, Who told thee that thou wast & Jer. 23, 24. Ara, 9. 2, 3.
h 1 John 3. 2. of the eyes of the body; those were opened before, as appears hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God: a sad by this, that the sin came in at them; Jonathan's eyes were change! Before they had sinncd, if they had heard the voice enlightened by eating forbidden fruit, 1 Sam. 14. 27, that is, he of the Lord God coming toward them, they would have run to was refreshed and revived by it; but their's were not so. Nor meet him, and with a humble joy welcomed his gracious visits; iz it meant of any advances made hereby in true knowledge; but now that it was otherwise, God was become a terror to but the eyes of their consciences were opened, their hearts them, and then, no marvel that they were become a terror to smote them for what they had done. Now, when it was 100 themselves, and full of confusion; their own consciences accused late, they saw the folly of eating forbidden fruit. They saw them, and set their sin before them in its colours ; their figthe happiness they were fallen from, and the misery they were leaves failed them, and would do them no service ; God was fallen into. They saw a loving God provoked, his grace and comne forth against them as an enemy, and the wholo creation favour forfeited, his likeness and image lost, dominion over the was at war with them; and as yet, they knew not of any creatures gone. They saw their natures corrupted and de- mediator between them and an angry God, so that nothing praved, and felt a disorder in their own spirits which they had remained but a certain fearful looking for of judgment. In this never before been conscious of. They saw a law in their fright, they hid themselves among the bushes; having offended members warring against the law of their minds, and captiva they tied for the same. Knowing themselves guilty, they durst ting them both to sin and wrath. They saw, as Balaam, when not stand a trial, but absconded, and fled from justice. See here, his eyes were opened, (Num. 22. 31,) the angel of the Lord [1.] The falsehood of the tempter, and the frauds and the standing in the way, and his sword drawn in his hand; and fallacies of his temptations : he promised them they should be perhaps they saw the serpent that had abused them, insulting safe, but now they cannot so much as thunk themselves so; he over them. The text tells us, they saw that they were naked, said they should not die, and yet now they are forced to fly for that is, (1.). That they were stripped, deprived of all the their lives; he promised them they should be advanced, but they honours and joys of their paradise state, and exposed to all the see themselves abased, never did they seem so little as now; he miseries that might justly be expected from an angry God; promised them they should be knowing, but they see themselves they were disarmed, their defence was departed from them. at a loss, and know not so much as where to hide themselves; [2.] That they were shamed, for ever shamed, before God he promised them they should be as gods, great, and bold, and and angels; they saw themselves disrobed of all their orna- daring, but they are as criminals discovered, trembling, pale, ments and ensigns of honour, degraded from their dignity, and and anxious to escape: they would not be subjects, and so they disgraced in the highest degree; laid open to the contempt are prisoners. (2.) The folly of sinners, to think it either and reproach of heaven, and earth, and their own consciences. possible, or desirable, to hide themselves from God: can they Now, see here, First, what a dishonour and disquietment sin conceal themselves from the Father of lights ? Ps. 139. 7, &c. is ; it makes mischief wherever it is admitted, sets men against Jer. 23. 24. Will they withdraw themselves from the Fountain themselves, disturbs their peace, and destroys all their com of life, who alone can give help and happiness ? Jon. 2. 8. forts : sooner or later, it will have shame, either the shame (3.) The fears that attend sin: all that amazing fear of God's of true repentance which ends in glory, or that shame and appearances, the accusations of conscience, the approaches of overlasting conteinpt, to which the wicked shall rise at the trouble, the assaults of inferior creatures, and the arrest of great day: sin is a reproach to any people. Secondly, What death which is common among men, all these are the effect of a deceiver Satan is; he told our first parents, when he tempted sin. Adam and Eve, who were partners in the sin, were them, that their eyes should be opened ; and so they were, but sharers in the shame and fear that attended it; and though not as they understood it; they were opened, to their shame hand joined in hand, (hands so lately joined in marriage,) yet and grief, not to their honour or advantage. Therefore, when could they not animate or fortify one another: miserable comhe speaks fair, believe him not. The most malicious mischie-forters they were become to each other! vous liars often excuse themselves with this, that they are only V. 9, 10. We have here the arraignment of these deserters equivocations; but God will not so excuse them.
before the righteous Judge of heaven and earth, who, though ho (2.) The sorry shift they made, to palliate these convictions, is not tied to observe formalities, yet proceeds against them and to arm themselves against them; they sewed, or platted with all possible fairness, that he may be justified when he fig-leaves together ; and, to cover, at least, part of their shame speaks. Observe here, from one another, they made themselves aprons. See here what 1. The startling question with which God pursued Adam, is commonly the folly of those that have sinned. [1.] That and arrested him, Where art thou? Not as if God did noi they are more solicitous to save their credit before men, than know where he was; but thus he would enter the process to obtain their pardon from God; they are backward to confess against him. “Come, where is this foolish man ?” Some their sin, and very desirous to conceal it, as much as may be ; make it a bemoaning question, "Poor Adam, what is become I have sinned, yet honour me. (2.) That the excuses men of thee?" " Alas for thee!” (so some read it,) “How art make, to cover and extenuate their sins, are vain and frivolous ; thou fallen, Lucifer, son of the morning! Thou that wast my like the aprons of fig-leaves, they make the matter never the friend and favourite, whom I have done so much for, and better, but the worse ; the shame, thus hid, becomes the more would have done so much more for; hast thou now forsaken shameful; yet thus we are all apt to cover our transgressions as me, and ruined thyself? Is it come to this ?" It is rather an Adam, Job 31. 33.
upbraiding question, in order to his conviction and humiliation. 2. Fear seized them immediately upon their eating the Where art thou? Noi, In what place, but, In what condition ? forbidden fruit, v. 8. Observe here,
"Is this all thou hast gotten by eating forbidden fruit?. Thou (1.) What was the cause and occasion of their fear; they that wouldest vie with me, dost thou now fly from me?” Note, heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the (1.) Those who by sin have gone astray from God, should cool of the day. It was the approach of the Judge, that put seriously consider where they are ; they are afar off from ail them into a fright; and yet he came in such a manner, as good, in the midst of their enemies, in bondage to Satan, and made it formidable only to guilty consciences, It is supposed in the high road to utter ruin. This inquiry after Adam may that he came in a human shape, and that he who judged the world be looked upon as a gracious pursuit in kindness to him, and in now, was the same that shall judge the world at the last day, order to his recovery. If God had not called to him, to reclaim even that man whom God has ordained : he appeared to them him, lis condition had been as desperate as that of fallen now, (it should seem,) in no other similitude than that in which angels; this lost sheep had wandered endlessly, if the good they had seen him when he put them into paradise; for he shepherd had not sought after him, to bring him back, and in came to convince and humble them, not to amaze and terrify order to that, reminded him where he was, where he should not them. He came into the garden, not descending immediately be, and where he could not be either happy or easy. Note, from heaven in their view, as afterward on mount Sinai, (2.) If sinners will but consider where they are, they will not (making cither thick darkness his pavilion, or the flaming fire rest till they return to God. his chario,) but he came into the garden, as one that was still 2. The trembling answer which Adam gave to this question, willing to be familiar with them. He came walking, not v. 10, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid : he running, not riding upon the wings of the wind, but walking does not own his guilt, and yet in effect confesses it, by owning deliberately, as one slow to anger; teaching us, when we are his shame and fear; but it is the common fault and folly of never so much provoked, not to be hot or hasty, but to speak and those that have done an ill thing, when they are questioned act considerately, and not rashly. He came in the cool of the about it, to acknowledge no more than what is so manifest that day, not in the night, when all fears are doubly fearful, nor in they cannot deny it. Adam was afraid, because he was the heat of the day, for he came not in the heat of his anger ; naked ; not only unarmed, and therefore afraid to contend with Fury is not in him, Is. 27. 4. Nor did he come suddenly upon God, but unclothed, and therefore afraid so much as to appear them; but they heard his voice at some distance, giving them before him. We have reason to be afraid of approaching to notice of his coming, and, probably, it was a still small voice, God, if we be not clothed and fenced with the righteousness of like that in which he came to inquire after Elijah. Some think Christ; for nothing but that will be armour of proof, and cover they heard him discoursing with himself concerning the sin of the shame of our nakedness. Let us therefore put on the Adam, and the judgment now to be passed upon him; perhaps, Lord Jesus Christ, and then draw near with humble boldness. as he did concerning Israel, Hog. 11.8, 9, How shall I give V. 11–13. We have here the offenders found guilty by their thee up? Or rather, they heard him calling for them, and own confession, and yet endeavouring to excuse and extenuate coming toward them.
their fault; they could not confess and justify what they had (2.) What was the effect and evidence of their fear; they done, but they confess and palliate it. Observe,