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tered to him; they obeyed his will, bending to his wishes; in him they beheld their superior, and with
stones we tread on (even in that we tread on them) are useful, and serve to many good purposes beside : the surface of the earth how is it bespread all over, as a table well furnished, with variety of delicate fruits, herbs, and grains, to nourish our bodies, to please our tastes, to cheer our spirits, to cure our diseases ! How many fragrant and beautiful flowers offer themselves for the comfort of our smell, and the delight of our sight! Neither can our ears complain, since every wood breeds a quire of natural musicians, ready to entertain them with easy and unaffected harmony. The woods, I say, which, also adorned with stately trees, afford us a pleasant view and a refreshing shade, shelter from weather and sun, fuel for our fires, materials for our houses and our shipping; with divers other needful utensils. Even the barren mountains send us down fresh streams of water, so necessary to the support of our lives, so profitable for the fructification of our grounds, so commodious for conveyance of our wares, and maintaining intercourse among us. Yea, the wide seas are not (altogether unprofitable) wastes ; but freely yield us, without our tillage, many rich harvests, transmitting our commerce and traffic, furnishing our tables with stores of dainty fish, supplying the bottles of heaven with waters to refresh the earth, being inexhaustible cisterns, from whence our rivers and fountains are derived ; the very rude and boisterous winds themselves fulfil God's word, (which once commanded all things to be good, and approved them to be so,) by yielding manifold services to us; in brushing and cleansing the air for our health, in driving forward our ships, (which without their friendly help could not stir,) in gathering together, in scattering, in spreading abroad the clouds the clouds, those paths of God, which drop fatness upon our fields and pastures. As for our living subjects, all the inferior sorts of animals, it is hardly possible to reckon on the manifold benefits we receive from them ; how many ways they supply our needs with pleasant food and convenient clothing, how they ease our labour, how they promote even our recreation and sport. Thus,
stood not in any respect his desire. This was their first condition; this was the design concerning them of the benevolent Creator; this was the arrangement by which He provided for the comfort and welfare of all. Wisdom and goodness were the marked features of it, as they are of every work, and of every dispensation, which He has directed and ordained.
have all things upon the earth, (as is fit and seemly they should have) by the wise and gracious disposal of the great Creator, a reference to the benefit of its noblest inhabitant, most worthy and most able to use them : many of them have an immediate reference to man, (as necessary to his being, or conducible to his wellbeing; being fitted thereto, to his hand, without his care, skill, or labour,) others a reference to him, more mediate indeed, yet as reasonable to suppose; I mean such things, whose usefulness doth in part depend upon the exercise of our reason, and the instruments subservient thereto : for what is useful by the help of reason, doth as plainly refer to the benefit of a thing naturally endowed with that faculty, as what is agreeable to sense refers to a thing merely sensitive: we may, therefore, for instance, as reasonably suppose that iron was designed for our use, though first we be put to dig for it, then must employ many arts, and much pains before it become fit for our use ; as that the stones were therefore made, which lie open to our view: and which, without any preparation, we easily apply to the pavement of our streets, or the raising of our fences : also, the grain we sow in our ground, or the trees which we plant in our orchards, we have reason to conceive as well provided for us, as those plants which grow wildly and spontaneously ; for that sufficient means are bestowed on us of compassing such ends, and rendering those things useful to us, (a reason able to contrive what is necessary thereto, and a hand ready to execute,) it being also reasonable, that something should be left for the improvement of our reason, and employment of our industry, lest our noblest powers should languish and decay by sloth, or want of fit exercise.-Barrow.
Genesis i. 29, 30.
And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed,
which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat. And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it
WHEN the Almighty Creator had thus made man, and had thus given him blessing and dominion, He next, as the inspired Historian informs us, assigned to him food and sustenance; at the same time declaring, that He had also assigned their food and sustenanee to all living creatures besides, which had been produced, and which then existed on the face of the earth. This grant was made on the day of their creation; on the sixth day; man and beast having both been created on it, the latter before the former; but, the grant to man is the first spoken of, in all likelihood for the purpose of
proclaiming his superiority and dominion. Nothing, we may remark, is said of the grant of food to the
creatures whose habitation was in the waters, neither was it requisite: their very instinct would point out what was proper for them, and that we are to understand was the means by which God spoke to them; and there were no creatures between whom and themselves in this respect any distinction was to be drawn. The irrational animals on the earth and in the air, would in like manner have understood what was their intended sustenance; God, I say, we may conceive, had spoken to them in like manner, by their instinct; but, as they were inhabitants of the same portion of the globe with man, it was necessary that man should be ascertained of the property of either : the words are, therefore, addressed to him, teaching him what was his assignment of food, and what was theirs ; telling him what God had done, and what He was about to do. He was informed, as visible Lord of the lower creation; and he was informed because his food was not so much of instinct, as of grant and command. God spoke to them by their appetites, to him by his reason and faith ; for, both reason and faith were parties in the receiving of the communication, the propriety of the assignment and the power and goodness of the Grantor being equally acknowledged. The visible portion of man had been formed from the earth-a material substance; and it was fit that the support of it should be drawn from that its original. This was consonant with truest reason. He had been made to consist of two parts, body and soul, earthly and spiritual. The soul had not, could not have depen
dence on materiality; and the assignment of food, which is related in this place, concerns only the support of the body, the present tenement or habitation of the soul; to which it was actually united, and to which it would have continued inseparably united, but for the offence which caused the condemnation of the body again to the dust, and of it to him from whom it was given. It is clear, from this passage, that it was the divine intention, that man should never cease to regard his body as otherwise than material. Even, if we had no account of the threat which was denounced on disobedience, the threat of dissolution, we must still from hence have derived the materiality of the visible members. The granting of food implies the necessity of support from without, the incapacity of the subject to maintain itself by its own inherent powers; and, it is an essential characteristic of materiality to need extraneous support in order to the preservation of its life and form. It is a belief, to which we have been instructed, that, if man had not sinned, he would not have become subjected to death; here, therefore, lest it should be urged, that the assignment of food from the beginning, for the support of material life, implies an even then necessary subjection to death, I will just observe, that, if man had not corrupted his nature, he would not have violated the commandment of God in any instance; and that, although the support of his material life depended to a certain degree on his application to the means which were ordained for it, he would, so long as he continued