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ment in virtuous happiness, they best deserve, and most exquisitely enjoy it. On the other hand, to the wicked it will be no punishment, supposing their misery to outbalance their happiness, (as of some, such as Judas, it certainly will,) but rather a favour and indulgence; as it will totally release them from those torments, on the account of which, it had been good for them if they had never been born. But to return to the text before us; one need but read the context, to be satisfied that St. Paul here uses the words epos and area in the vulgar and moral sense only, for ruin and misery; not at all in the philosophical sense of annihilation. Take his own words; They that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. The plain meaning of which, in the mouth of any moralist in the world, would be apprehended to be this, and this only; that they who are resolved to be rich, expose themselves to many temptations, and cherish those sinful and destructive affections which in the end will prove their ruin. And the reason is, because the love of money is the root of all evil; and men who act upon that principle, in order to gain their ends, will scruple to commit nothing: as some already out of love to this present world, and for filthy lucre sake, have erred from the faith, either apostatized from it, or corrupted it, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.

But for the scriptural import

of the words ὄλεθρος and ἀπώλεια, see more under Num. LIX. and LXIX.



Heb. vi. 2. —and of eternal judgment.

Lasting judgment," says Mr. W. p. 43. " or ra"ther of that judgment which is for an age: [both "on good and bad."] I own, I know not what these last words mean, unless, as is usual enough with him, he contradicts himself. In other places" he

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n P. 106. One age only, it seems, is threatened to the wicked; while an unlimited number of the same ages is allotted to the good. P. 134. "The portion of the righteous in heaven is to be "vastly longer in duration than that single age that is allotted for "the punishment of the wicked in hell.-If I should suppose a vast disproportion between the one and the other, the reader is not to "be surprised at it." And in the next page this vast disproportion is attempted to be fixed; "The punishment of the wicked will be "no greater, as compared with the duration of the happiness of "the good, than two or three are to a thousand." Now how can a man that says this, talk of a judgment for an age, both on good and bad? Perhaps, after all, his meaning is, that the judgment here spoken of, is the general judgment, or relates both to good and bad. But if this be what he would say, it is also what he should have proved; the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment, says the apostle. Now as the former of these is frequently used, in the New Testament, in a good sense; so is the other (judgment, or eternal judgment) used in an ill one. Mark iii. 29. He that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of eternal damnation (alwrlov «ploewç). In Heb. vi. 2. κρίματος αἰωνίου. Ν. B. That αἰώνιος signifies eternal in the text of St. Mark, see Num. XXIV. John v. 24. —shall not come into condemnation, eiç «piow: ver. 29. —the resurrection of damnation, кpírews. And in the same sense, of condemnation, is «piσis, and κpíμɑ, used in many other places. Now if this be the meaning of it in the text before us, the judgment spoken of is not the general judgment on both good and bad, but the eternal judgment on the latter only.


supposes the judgment, or the retribution consequent to the judgment, (on the account of which the judgment is here called aims,) with regard to the good, to be of vastly longer duration than the punishment of the wicked; and yet here the judgment is but " for an age," it seems, "both on good and bad." And so far he is in the right, the judgment on both is of equal duration, whether that be an age or eternity. That it will not be the latter, at least as to the bad, he thinks is plain from the next testimony in this same chapter; to which we now follow him.


Heb. vi. 8. But that which beareth thorns and briers is rejected, and is nigh unto cursing; whose end is to be burned.

-"Not kept like iron, or the like metals melted, "in the furnace of fire, and there abiding; but "like briers and thorns, which are always utterly "dissolved and consumed by the fire." P. 44.

What an instance have we here of his care, (shall I say?) or his criticism! It is plain he took the words, whose end is to be burned, to relate to the thorns and briers: and so, because "thorns and briers "are," as he says, "utterly dissolved and consumed


by the fire," it is to be inferred, that the wicked will be so too. Which, by the bye, is no consequence, though the construction of the words were as he supposes. Arguments taken from allusions and comparisons hold only in the main point and design of them, and no further. And the stress of the comparison here does not lie in the circumstance of the thorns and briers being utterly consumed by the fire, but in their being rejected and burned;

(whether to utter consumption, or otherwise ;) so the wicked will be rejected, and their end likewise is to be burned; but whether to utter extinction of being, this text says nothing, and the very nature of the thing reclaims. But, as I intimated at first, the burning here does not relate to the thorns and briers, but to the earth which beareth them. The earth, ver. 7. which bringeth forth herbs, is blessed; but that which beareth thorns and briers is rejected, and is nigh unto cursing, ãs tò téλos eis kaữow, whose end (or the end of which earth) is to be burned.


Num. LXXV.

Heb. ix. 27. —it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment.

N. B. Mr. W. has two deaths; for after the resurrection and the judgment, the wicked are to be burnt to death, or eaten to death by worms; and the soul, thus separated from the body a second time, remains capable of another resurrection. After which, I presume, there must be another judgment; unless God finally disposes of these creatures without any regard to their moral character and behaviour; contrary to every perfection of his nature, and to all the reasons of things.


Heb. x. 27. But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adver


By which is not meant totally consume them; the word does not imply o, nor will the context ad

· Οὐ γὰρ εἶπεν φαγεῖν μέλλον, ἀλλ ̓, ἐσθίειν, ἀϊδίως δηλαδή. Theoph. in loc.

mit of it. Here are strong expressions to the contrary, which shew the apostle had quite other ideas in his head, than that of annihilation. Poßepà dé TIS ἐκδοχὴ κρίσεως, καὶ πυρὸς ζῆλος;—Πόσῳ (δοκεῖτε) χείρονος ἀξιωθήσεται τιμωρίας;—Ἐμοὶ ἐκδίκησις, ἐγὼ ἀνταποδώσω; Κύριος κρινεῖ,—Φοβερὸν τὸ ἐμπεσεῖν εἰς χεῖρας Θεοῦ ζῶντος.



Heb. x. 39. —who draw back unto perdition. Explained by the opposition, the saving of the soul. Περιποίησις ψυχῆς est quod κτᾶσθαι ψυχὴν dicitur Luc. xxi. 19. evρíoкew, Matt. xvi. 25. σwew, Marc. viii. 35. Luc. ix. 24. puλátoew, Joh. xii. 25. Grotius in Poole.


Heb. xii. 29. For our God is a consuming fire.

"In the same sense," says Mr. W. p. 44. “ with "the foregoing." That is, with chap. vi. 8. the text in his book immediately before this; and the sense of which he mistook. See Num. LXXIV. The sense of the text before us may be collected from what is said under Num. LXXVI. It is κρίσις, τιμωρία, ἐκδί Kŋs, judgment, punishment, vengeance; not annihilation: a ridiculous motive for an apostle to urge, in order to induce men to serve God with reverence and godly fear.

Num. LXXX.

James i. 15. sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death. See Num. LVII.


James iv. 12. —who is able to save and to destroy P.
Able indeed, in the natural sense, to save, or pre-

P Ver. 11. He that speaketh evil of his brother, and judgeth his brother, (possibly, for using his Christian liberty in things indif

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