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speaks of making the HEART and SPIRIT NEW, or giving a new heart and spirit.
It is almost needless to observe, how evidently this is spoken of as necessary to salvation, and as the change in which are attained the habits of true virtue and holiness, and the character of a true saint; as has been observed of regeneration, conversion, &c. and how apparent it is, that the change is the same. Thus repentance (usravoia) the change of the mind, is the same as being changed to a NEW mind, or a NEW heart and spirit. Conversion is the turning of the heart; which is the same thing as changing it so, that there shall be another heart, or a new heart, or a new spirit. To be born again is to be born anew; which implies a becoming NEW, and is represented as becoming new born babes. But none supposes it is the body that is immediately and properly new, but the mind, heart, or spirit. And so a spiritual resurrection is the resurrection of the spirit, or rising to begin a NEW existence and life, as to the mind, heart, or spirit. So that all these phrases imply having a new heart, and being 'renewed in the spirit, according to their plain signification.
When Nicodemus expressed his wonder at Christ declaring it necessary that a man should be born again in order to see the kingdom of God, or enjoy the privileges of the kingdom of the Messiah, Christ says to him, " Art thou a master of Israel, and knowest not these things?" i. e. Art thou one who is set to teach others the things written in the law and the prophets, and knowest not a doctrine so plainly taught in your scriptures, that such a change is necessary to a partaking of the blessings of the Messiah's kingdom?" But what can Christ refer to, unless such prophecies as that in Ezek. xxxvi. 25-27? Where God, by the prophet, speaking of the days of the Messiah's kingdom, says, "Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean.-A NEW HEART also will I give you, and a NEW SPIRIT will I put within you-and I will put my spirit within you." Here God speaks of having a new heart and spirit, by being washed with water; and receiving the Spirit of God as the qualification of God's people, that shall enjoy the privileges of the Messiah's kingdom. How much is this like the doctrine of Christ to Nicodemus, of being "born again of water, and of the spirit?" We have another like prophecy in Ezek. xi. 19.-Add to this, that regeneration, or a being born again, and the renewing (or making new) by the Holy Ghost, are spoken of as the same thing, Tit. iii. 5. "By the washing of REGENERATION and RENEWING of the Holy Ghost."
V. It is abundantly manifest, that being born again, spiritually rising from the dead to newness of life, receiving a new heart, and being renewed in the spirit of the mind, are the
same thing with that which is called " putting off the OLD MAN, and putting on the NEW MAN."
The expressions are equivalent; and the representations are plainly of the same thing. When Christ speaks of being born again, two births are supposed: a first and a second, an old birth and a new one: And the thing born is called man.— So what is born in the first birth is the old man and what is brought forth in the second birth, is the new man. That which is born in the first birth (says Christ) is flesh: It is the carnal man, wherein we have borne the image of the earthly Adam, whom the apostle calls the first man. That which is born in the new birth, is spirit, or the spiritual and heavenly man: Wherein we proceed from Christ the second man, the new man, who is made a quickening spirit, and is the Lord from heaven, and the Head of the new creation.-In the new birth, men are represented as becoming new-born babes, which is the same thing as becoming new men.
And how apparently is what the scripture says of the spiritual resurrection of the Christian convert equivalent and of the very same import with putting off the old man, and putting on the new man? So in Rom. vi. the convert is repre- | sented as dying and being buried with Christ; which is explained in the 6th verse, by this, that the old man is crucified, that the body of sin might be destroyed." And in the 4th verse, converts in this change are spoken of as "rising to newness of life." Are not these things plain enough? The apostle in effect tells us, that when he speaks of spiritual death and resurrection, he means the same thing as "crucifying and burying the old man, and rising as a new man."
And it is most apparent, that spiritual circumcision, and spiritual baptism, and the spiritual resurrection, are all the same with "putting off the old man and putting on the new man." This appears by Colos. ii. 11, 12. "In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ, buried with him in baptism; wherein also ye are risen with him." Here it is manifest that the spiritual circumcision, baptism, and resurrection, all signify that change wherein men "put off the body of the sins of the flesh." But that is the same thing, in this apostle's language, as "putting off the old man ;" as appears by Rom. vi. 6. "Our old man is crucified that the body of sin may be destroyed." And that putting off the old man is the same with putting off the body of sin, appears further by Ephes. iv. 22-24. and Colos. iii. 8-10. As Dr. T. confesses, that to be born again, "is that wherein are obtained the habits of virtue, religion, and true holiness;" so how evidently is the same thing predicated of that change, which is called " putting off the old man, and putting on the new man?" Eph. iv. 22-24. “That
ye put off the old man, which is corrupt, &c. and put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness."
And it is most plain, that this putting off the old man, &c. is the very same thing with making the heart and spirit new. It is apparent in itself; the spirit is called the man, in the language of the apostle: it is called the inward man, and the hidden man. (Rom. vii. 22. 2 Cor. iv. 16. 1 Pet. iii. 4.) And therefore, putting off the old man, is the same thing with the removal of the old heart; and the putting on of the new man, is the receiving of" a new heart, and a new spirit." Yea, putting on the new man is expressly spoken of as the same thing with receiv ing "a new spirit, or being renewed in spirit, Eph. iv. 22-24. "That ye put off the old man—and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and that ye put on the new man."
From these things it appears how unreasonable, and contrary to the utmost degree of scriptural evidence, is Dr. T.'s way of explaining the old man, and the new man,* as though thereby was meant nothing personal; but that by the old man was meant the heathen state, and by the new man, the Christian dispensation, or state of professing Christians, or the whole collective body of professors of Christianity, made up of Jews and Gentiles; when all the colour he has for it is, that the apostle once calls the Christian church a new man. (Eph. ii. 15.) It is very true, in the scriptures often, both in the Old Testament and the New, collective bodies, nations, peoples, and cities, are figuratively represented by persons: particularly the church of Christ is represented as one holy person, and has the same appellatives as a particular saint or believer; and so is called a
child, a son of God,” (Exod. iv. 22. Gal. iv. 1, 2.) "a servant of God," (Isai. xli. 8, 9. and xliv. 1.) “The daughter of God, and spouse of Christ," (Psal. xlv. 10, 13, 14. Rev. xix. 7.) Nevertheless, would it be reasonable to argue, that such appellations as a "servant of God, a child of God," &c. are always or commonly to be taken as signifying only the church of God in general, or great collective bodies; and not to be understood in a personal sense? But certainly this would not be more unreasonable than to urge, that by the old and the new man as the phrases are mostly used in scripture, is to be understood nothing but the great collective bodies of Pagans and of Christians, or the heathen and the christian world, as to their outward profession, and the dispensation they are under. It might have been proper, in this case, to have considered the unreasonableness of that practice which our author charges on others, and finds so much fault with in them,† That they content themselves with a few scraps of scripture, which, though wrong understood,
† Page 224.
they make the test of truth and the ground of their principles, in contradiction to the whole tenor of revelation.”
VI. I observe once more, it is very apparent, that "being born again," and spiritually raised from death to a state of new existence and life, having a "new heart created in us, being renewed in the spirit of our mind," and being the subjects of that change by which we "put off the old man and put on the new man," is the same thing with that which in scripture is called being created anew, or made new creatures.
Here, to pass over many other evidences which might be mentioned, I would only observe that the representations are exactly equivalent. These several phrases naturaily and most plainly signify the same effect. In the first birth or generation, we are created or brought into existence; it is then the whole man first receives being: The soul is then formed, and then our bodies are "fearfully and wonderfully made, being curiously wrought by our Creator." So that a new-born child is a new creature. So, when a man is born again, he is created again; in that new birth, there is a new creation; and therein he becomes as a new born babe, or a NEW CREATure. So, in a resurrection, there is a new creation. When a man is dead, that which was made in the first creation is destroyed: When that which was dead is raised to life, the mighty power of the Author of life is exerted the second time, and the subject restored to a new existence and a new life, as by a new creation. So giving a new heart is called CREATING a clean heart, Psal. li. 10. Where the word translated create, is the same that is used in the first verse in Genesis. And when we read in scripture of the new creature, the creature that is called NEW is MAN; and therefore the phrase, new man, is evidently equipollent with new creature; and putting off the old man, and putting on the new man, is spoken of expressly as brought to pass by a work of creation. Col. iii. 9, 10. "Ye have put off the old man—and have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge, after the image of him that created him." So Eph. iv. 22-24. "That ye put off the old man, which is corrupt, &c. and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness." These things absolutely fix the meaning of 2 Cor. v. 17. "If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: Old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new." On the whole, the following reflections may be made:
1. That it is a truth of the utmost certainty, with respect to every man born of the race of Adam by ordinary generation, that unless he be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. This is true not only of the heathen, but of them that are born of the professing people of God, as Nicodemus, and the Jews, and every man born of the flesh. This is most man
ifest by Christ's discourse in John iii. 3-11. So it is plain by 2 Cor. v. 17. "That every man who is in Christ, is a NEW
2. It appears from this, together with what has been proved above, that it is most most certain with respect to every one of the human race, that he can never have any interest in Christ, or see the kingdom of God, unless he be the subject of that CHANGE in the temper and disposition of his heart, which is made in repentance and conversion, circumcision of heart, spiritual baptism, dying to sin, and rising to a new and holy life; and unless he has the old heart taken away, and a new heart and spirit given, and puts off the old man, and puts on the new man, and old things are passed away, and all things made new.
3. From what is plainly implied in these things, and from what the scripture most clearly teaches of the nature of them, it is certain, that every man is born into the world in a state of moral pollution. For SPIRITUAL BAPTISM is a cleansing from moral filthiness. (Ezek. xxxvi. 25. compared with Acts ii. 16. and John iii. 5.) So the washing of regeneration, or the NEW BIRTH, is a change from a state of wickedness. (Tit. iii. 3—5.) Men are spoken of as purified in their regeneration. (1 Pet. i. 22, 23. See also 1 John ii. 29. and iii. 1, 3.) And it appears that every man in his first or natural state is a sinner; for otherwise he would then need no REPENTANCE nor cONVERSION, no turning from sin to God. And it appears that every man in his original state has a heart of stone; for thus the scripture calls that old heart, which is taken away, when a NEW HEART, and NEW SPIRIT is given. (Ezek. ix. 19. and xxxvi. 26.) And it appears that man's nature, as in his native state, is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and of its own motion exerts itself in nothing but wicked deeds. For thus the scripture characterises the OLD MAN, which is put off when men are renewed in the spirit of their minds, and put on the NEW MAN. (Eph. iv. 22-24. Col. iii. 8-10.) In a word it appears that man's nature, as in its native state, is a body of sin which must be destroyed, must die, be buried, and never rise more. For thus the OLD MAN is represented, which is crucified, when men are the subjects of a spiritual RESURRECTION. Rom. vi. 4-6. Such a nature, such a body of sin as this, is put off in the spiritual RENOVATION, wherein we put on the NEW MAN, and are the subjects of the spiritual CIRCUMCISION. EPH. iv. 21-23.
It must now be left with the reader to judge for himself, whether what the scripture teaches of the APPLICATION Of Christ's redemption, and the change of state and nature necessary to true and final happiness, does not afford clear and abundant evidence to the truth of the doctrine of original sin.