« ZurückWeiter »
From all which I suppose it is clear, that specious thing to be said, is, that he that: neither Adam, vor Noah, had any pric is proprietor of the whole world, may date dominion, any property in the crea- deny all the rest of mankind food, and cures, exclusive of his posterity, as they so at his pleasure starve them, if they should successively grow up into need of will not acknowledge his sovereignty, them, and come to be able to make use and obey his will. If this were true, is of them.
would be a good argument to prove, 40. Thus we have examined our au- that there never was any such property, thor's argument for Adum's monarchy, that God never gave any such private founded on the blessing pronounced, dominion ; since it is more reasonable to Gen: i. 29, wherein I think it is impos- think, that God, who bid mankind insible for any sober reader to find any crease and multiply, should rather himother but the setting of mankind above self give them all a right to make use of the other kinds of creatures, in this ha- the food and raiment, and other convebilable earth of ours. It is nothing but niences of life, the materials whereof he the giving to man, the whole species of had so plentifully provided for them; inan, as the chief inhabitant, who is the than to make them depend upon the will image of his maker, the dominion over of a man for their subsistence, who the other creatures. This lies so obvious should have power to destroy them all in the plain words, that any one, but our when he pleased, and who, being no author, would have thought it necessary better than other men, was in succession to have shewn, how these words, that likelier, by want and the dependence of seemned to say the quite contrary, gave a scanty fortune, to tie then to hard Adam monarchical absolute power over service, than by liberal allowance of the other men, or the sole property in all the conveniences of life to promote the great creatures; and methinks in a business of design of God, increase and multiply: this moment, and that whereon he builds he who doubts this, let him look into the all that follows, he should have done absolute monarchies of the world, and something more than barely cite words, see what becomes of the conveniences which apparently make against him ; for of life, and the multitudes of people. I confess, I cannot see any thing in thein 42. But we know God hath not left tending to Adam's monarchy, or private one man so to the mercy of another, dominion, but quite the contrary. And that he may starve him if he please : I the less deplore the dulness of my ap- God, the lord and father of all, bas prehension herein, since I find the apos- given no one of his children such a protle seems to bave as little notion of any perty in his peculiar portion of the things such private dominion of Adam as I, of this world, but that he has given bis when he says, God gives us all things needy brother a right to the surplusage richly to enjoy, which he could not do, of his goods; so that it cannot justly be if it were all given away already, to mo- denied him, when his pressing wants narch Adam, and the monarchis his heirs call for it; and therefore no man could and successors. To conclude, this text ever have a just power over the life of is so far from proying Adam sole pro- another by right of property in land. or prietor, that, on the contrary, it is a con possessions; since it would always be a firmation of the original community of sin, in any man ot'estate, to let his broall anongst the sons ot' men, which ap- ther perish for want of affording him rer pearing from this donation of God, as lief out of his plenty. As justice gives well as other places of scripture, the every man a title to ihe product of his sovereignty of Adam, built upon his pria honest industry, and the fair acquisivute dominion, must fall, not having any tions of his ancestors descended to him; foundation to support it.
so charity gives every man a title to so 41. But vet, it atter all, any one will inuch out of another's plenty, as will needs have it so, that by this donation keep him from extreme want, where he of God, Adam was made sole proprietor has no means to subsisi otherwise : and of the whole earth, what will this be to a man can no more justly inake .use of his sovereignty? and how will it appear, another's necessity, to force himn to be that propricty in land gives a man power come bis vassal, by withholding that rem over the life of another? or how will the lief God requires him to afford to the possession even of the whole earth, give wants of his brother, than he that has any one a sovereign arbitrary authority more strength cao seize uyon a weakers over the personis of meu? The most
master him to his obedience, and with ing from these words, Obseriations, 244. a dagger at his throat offer him death or and consider, ainong other thinys, the slavery.
line and posterity of Adam, as he there 43. Should any one make so perverse brings them in, he will find some diffian use of God's blessings poured on him culty to make sense of what he says; with a liberal hand; should any one be but we will allow this at present to his cruel and uncharitable to that extremity, peculiar way of writing, and consider get all this would not prove that proprie- the foice of the text in hand. The words ty in land, even in this case, gave any are the curse of God upon the woman, authority over the persons of men, but for having been the first and forwardest only that compact might; since the au- in the disobedience; and if we will conthority of the rich proprietor, and the sider the occasion of what God says subjection of the needy beggar, began here to our first parents, that he was not from the possession of the lord, but denouncing judgment, and declaring bis the consent of the poor man, who pre- wrath against them both, for their disferred being his subject to starving. And obedience, we cannot suppose that this the man he thus submits to, can pretend was the time, wherein God was grant- 1 to no inore power over him, than he has ing Adam prerogatives and privileges, consented to, upon compact. Upon investing him with dignity and authority, this ground it man's having his stores elevating him to dominion and monarchy: filled in a time of scarcity, having mo- for though, as a helper in the temptaney in his pocket, being in a vessel at tion, Eve was laid below him, and so sea, being able to swiin, &c. may as he had accidentally a superiority over well be the foundation of rule and do- her, for her greater punishment; yet he minion, as being possessor of all the too had his share in the fall, as well as land in the world, any of these being in the sin, and was laid lower, as nay sufficient to enable me to save a man's be seen in the following verses; and it life, who would perish if such assistance would be hard to imagine, that God, in were denied him; and apý thing, by the same breath, should make hiin unithis rule, that may be an occasion of versal monarch over all mankind, and a working upon another's necessity, to day labourer for his life; turn bin out save his life, or any thing dear to him, of paradise to till the ground, ver. 23. at the rate of bis freedom, may be and at the same time advance him to a made a foundation of sovereignty, as throne, and all the priyileges and ease well as property. From all which it is of absolute power. clear, that thougio God should have giv- 45. This was not a time, when Adam en Adam pricate dominion, yet that prin could expect any favours, any grant of vate dominion could give him no sove- privileges, from his offended Maker. If reignty; but we have already sufficiently this be the original grant of government, proved, that God gave him no private as our author tells us, and Adain was dominion.
now made monarch, whatever Sir RoCHAPTER v.
bert would have him, it is plain, God Of Adam's Title to Sovereignty by the made him but a very poor monarch, Subjection of Eve.
such an one, as our author hiinself would 41. The next place of scripture we have counted it no great privilege to be. find our author builds his monarchy of God sets him to work for his living, and Adam on, is, Gen. iii. 26. And thy de- seems rather to give him a spade into şire shall be to thụ husbund, and he shall his hand, to subdue the earth, than a rule over thee. Here we huve (says he) sceptre to rule over its inhabitants. In the original grant of government, from the sweat of thy fuce thou shalt eat thy whence he concludes, in the following bread, says God to him, ver. 19. This part of the page, Observations, 244. was unavoidable, may it perbaps be aue, That the supreme power is settled in the swered, because he was yet without fatherhood, and limited to one kind of subjects, and had nobody to work for government, that is, lo monarchy. For him ; but afterwards, living as he did let his premises be what they will, this above 900 years, he might have people is always the conclusion ; let rule, in enough, whom he might command to any text be but once named, and pre- work for him; no, says God, not only sently absolute monarchy is by divine whilst thou art without other help, save right established. If any one will but thy wife, but as long as thou livest, Carefully read our author's own reason- shalt thou live by thy labour. 1.2 the,
sweat of thy face, shalt thou eat thy bring forth children, and thy desire bread, till thou return unto the ground, shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule for out of it wast thou taken, for dust over thee. It would, I think, have been thou art, and unto dust shalt thou re- a hard matter for any body, but our turn, 0. 19. It will perhaps be answer- author, to have found out a grant of ed again in favour of our author, that monarchical government to Adam in these these words are not spoken personally words, which were neither spoke to, nor to Adam, but in him, as their repre- of him : veither will any one, I supposé, sentative, to all mankind, this being a hy these words, think the weaker sex curse upon mankind, because of the fall. as by a law, so subjected to the curse
46. God, I believe, speaks differently contained in them, that it is their duty from men, because he speaks with more not to endeavour to avoid it. And will truth, more certainty: but when he any one say, that Eve, or any other vouchsafes to speak to men, I do got woman, sinned, if she were brought to think he speaks differently from them, bed without those multiplied pains God in crossing the rules of language in use threatens her here with? or that either amongst them : this would not be to of our queens, Mary or Elizabeth, had condescend to their capacities, when he they married any of their subjects, had humbles himself to speak to them, but heen by this text put into a political to lose his design in speaking what, thus subjection to hiin? or that be there. spoken they could not understand. And hy should have had monarchical rule yet thus must we think of God, if the over her? God, in this text, gives yot, interpretations of scripture, necessary to that I see, any authority to Adam over maintain our author's doctrine, must be Eve, or to men over their wives, but received for good : for by the ordinary only foretels what should be the worules of language, it will be very hard man's lot, how by his providence he to understand what God says, if what would order it so, that she should be he speaks here, in the singular number, subject to her husband, as we see that to Adam, must be understood to be generally the laws of mankind and cusspoken to all mankind, and what he says toms of nations have ordered it so ; and in the plural number, Gen. i. 26, and there is, I grant, a foundation in liature 28. must be understood of Adam alone, for it. exclusive of all others, and what he says 48. Thus when God says of Jacob and to Noah and his sons jointly, must be Esau, that the elder should serve the understood to be meant to Noah alone, younger, Gen. xxv. 23. no body suppoGen. ix.
ses that God hereby made Jacob Esau's 47. Farther it is to be noted, that sovereign, but foretold what should de these words here of Gen. iii. 16. which facto come to pass. our author calls the original grant of But if these words here spoke to Eve government, were not spoken to Adam, nust needs be understood as a law to neither indeed was there any grant in bind her and all other women to subjecthem made to Adam, but a punishment tion, it can be no other subjection that Jaid upon Eve; and if we will take them what every wise owes her husband; and as they were directed in particular to then if this be the original grant of goher, or in her, as their representative, vernment and the foundution of monarchto all other women, they will at most ical power, there will be as many 0110concern the female sex only, and im- marchs as there are husbands : if thereport no more, but that subjection they fore these words give any power to
should ordinarily be in to their husbands: Adam, it can be only a conjugal power, : but there is here no more law to oblige not political; the power that every hus
a woman to such a subjection, if the band hath to order the things of private circumstances either of her condition, concerninent in his family, as proprietor or contract with her husband, should of the goods and land there, and to have exempt her from it, than there is, that his will ke place before that of his wife she should bring forth her children in in all things of their common concernsorrow and pain, if there could be found ment; but not a political power of life a remedy for it, which is also a part of and death ovel her, much less over any the same curse upon her : for the whole body else. verse runs thus, Unto the woman he 49. This I am sure: if our author will said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow have this text to be a grant, the original and thy conception ; in sorrow thou shalt grant of government, political government, he ought to have proved it by that would trace our author so all through, some better arguments than by barely would make a short and sufficient an“ saying, that thy desire shall be unto thy swer to the greatest part of the grounds husband, was a law whereby Eve, and he proceeds on, and abundantly confute all that should come of her, were sub them by barely denying; it being a sufjected to the absolute monarchical pow. ficient answer to assertions without proof, er of Adam and his heirs. Thy desire to deny then without giving a reason. shall be to thy husband, is too doubtful And therefore should I have said nothing an expression, of whose signification in- but barely denied, that by this text the terpreters are not agreed, to build so supreme power was settled and founded confidently on, and is a matter of such by God himself, in the fatherhood, limia moment, and so great and general con- ted to monarchy, and that to Adam's ceroment: but our author, according person and heirs, all which our author to his way of writing, having once named notably concludes froin these words, as the text, concludes presently without may be seen in the same page, Observaany more ado, that the meaning is as tions, 244. it had been a sufficient anhe would have it. Let the words rule swer: should I have desired any sober and subject be but found in the text or man ogly to have read the text, and margent, and it immediaiely signifies considered to whom, and on what octhe duty of a subject to his prince; the casion it was spoken, he would no doubt relation is changed, and though God have wondered how our author found says husband, Sir Robert will have it out monurchical absolute power in it, had king; Adam has presently absolute mo- he not had an exceeding good faculty to narchical power over Eve, and pot only find it himself, where he could not shew over Eve, but all that should come of it others. And thus we have examined her, though the scripture says not a the two places of scripture, all that I word of it, por our author a word to remember our author brings to prove prove it. But Adam must for all that Adam's sovereignty, that supremacy; be an absoluie monarch, and so down which he savs, it was God's ordinance to the end of the chapter. And here I should be unlimited in Adam, and as leave my reader to consider, whether targe as all the acts of his will, Obsermy bare saying, without offering any vations, 251, viz. Gen. i. 28. and Gen. reasons to evince it, that this text gave ini. 16. one whereof signifies only the not Adam that absolute monarchical pow- subjection of the inferior ranks of crea. ' er, our author supposes, be not sutti- tures to mankind, and the other the subcient to destroy that power, as his bare jection that is due frein a wife to her assertion is to establish it, since the text husband, both far enough from that mentions neither prince nor people, which subjects owe the governors of pospeaks nothing of absolute or monarchi- litical societies. cal power, but the subjection of Eve to
[To be continued.] Adam, a wife to her husband. And be
THE CHARACTER OF THE WISEST MEN.
[First Published 1696.]
• They are persons of a moderate an Apollos, or a Cephas, but look and healing temper, of catholic and upon it as the great design of chriscomprehensive charity: they do not tianity to make men good, and where baptize their religion with the name it hath not that effect, they know it of a sect, nor espouse the interest of matters not what church such a man a party, but love all good men that is of, because a bad man can be fear God and work righteousness. saved in none.
They are not guilty of the Corin They shun the dangerous extremes, thian vanity, in crying up a Paul, and keep the regular mean, and in
divine worship prefer a reverend de- souls, they give them liberty of incency before pompous superstition, terpreting, as knowing themselves or popular confusion, neither bow. not to be infallible. ing down to the altar of Baal, nor They know there are many conadmiring the calves of Bethel. troversies amongst christians, of that
They are true primitive christians, intricacy, that ihe day of judgment and think it lawful to hold commu- must determine who are most in the nion with any true church of Christ right; therefore they dare not judge that is sound in the substantials of men's final estates, or of the sincerity religion, notwithstanding some cir- of their hearts by their speculative cumstantial differences in the exter- opinions, or the different relishes of nal modes of administration: and things, because every inan must bethen they suspect it sinful and schis- lieve what he can, and not what he matical to separate from any true will. christians, who agree in apostolical They admire to see some chrisdoctrine, and maintain the discipline tians so egregiously mistaken in the of the purest ages.
notion of true catholicism, as to They prove all things, and hold confine salvation to their particular fast only that which is good, and are communion, and they think it strange persuaded those christians are most to hear men contend for an infallible in the right, who choose out of all guide, when Moses and the propheis, parties whatsoever things are just, &c. Christ and his apostles, do with one and not they that think every thing consent declare, that the way to the to be so that is maintained by their blessedness of the righteous, is by own party.
observing the rule and exercise of They place religion more in the holy living, from a principle of diserious practice of picty, than in the vine lise. observance of ceremonious forms; They never charge other men's they are neither fond of needless ri- doctrines with such odious consetuals, nor yet molested with ground- quences as they never intended, nor less scruples, but long for the Phi- asperse their persons with such inviladelphian state of the church, wish- dious names as they never deserved; ing that all the world might with but make charitable allowances for one mouth glorify the cternal God. their different educations, constitu
They pay a great deference to an- tions, and apprehensions of things, tiquity, yet they are not so fond of supposing that other men may differ crror as to fall in love wiih it mere from them with the same sincerity ly for its grey hairs, but make use of they differ from others, and sometheir vun reason to judge of the rea- times from themselves. sonings of men: though they apply They are for a religious loyalty, themselves to spiritual guides, yet and prefer the wisdom of public authey love to enquire the way to Sion,. thoriiy before their own private judg. and not follow them in the dark, ex. ments, in all such matters as are not cept ihey carry a lanthorn in their determined by the sovereign pleasure bands.
of their maker; and if in any thing They refer the decision of all the they ditter from the wisdom of their differences amongst goud christians superiors, they do it with great mo. primarily to the sense and meaning desty and reservation, and are alof the holy scriptures : and they ways ready to change their minds know every man must judge for himwhen better information leads them sif, therefore where they see men to it, not thinking they undervalue nim allibey can to find out the truth, their judgments by so doing. pri please God, and to save their own They are afraid of being infected