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Q. 14. Are the apostate angels represented in the Scriptures as having an agency in this world?
A. They are. Though invisible, they greatly exert themselves, and do much mischief by leading mankind into sin. Satan tempted Eve, tempted Christ, and instigated Judas to betray his Master. He is spoken of more frequently in the Bible than any other single agent except God the Father, the Saviour, and the Holy Ghost, and always as engaged in evil devices or works. (j)
Q. 15. What is the number of fallen angels?
Q. 16. Ought the Scriptural account of the devils to be believed?
A. It ought most assuredly. 1. There is nothing absurd in it. We can conceive of devils as easily and as clearly as we can of holy angels, or of any invisible being whatever. 2. It is the account which God has given. 3. There is the same reason to believe it, that there is to believe the account of holy angels. And, 4. It is very particularly intermixed with the history of Jesus Christ. There is therefore no reason for rejecting it, but all reason for believing it.
world, he was cast out into the earth; and his angels were cast out with him.-Rev. ix. 11. And they had a king over them, which is the angel of the bottomless pit, whose name in the Hebrew tongue is Abaddon, but in the Greek tongue hath his name Apollyon.-Rev. xii. 10. And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength; and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ; for the Accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.-Matt. xii. 24. But when the Pharisees heard it, they said, This fellow doth not cast out devils, but by Beelzebub, the Prince of the devils-Eph. ii. 2. Wherein in time past, ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the Prince of the power of the air, the spirit, that now worketh in the children of disobedience.-2 Cor. iv. 4. In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not.
(j) Gen. iii. 13. And the Lord God said unto the woman, What is this that thou hast done? And the woman said, The Serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.-Matt. iv. 1. Then was Jesus led up of the spirit into the wilderness, to be tempted of the Devil.-John xiii. 2. And supper being ended, (the Devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon's son, to betray him.)-1 Pet. v. 8. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary, the Devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour.-Luke xxii. 31. And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat.
(k) Mark v. 9. And he asked him, What is thy name? And he answered, saying, My name is Legion; for we are many,
Q. 17. What is the consequence of a denial of the doctrine of fallen angels?
A. It leads to infidelity-to the rejection of the main truths of the gospel, viz. the fall of man, recovery by Jesus Christ, the day of judgment, and final retribution. And the same principle of interpretation would justify the denial of the existence of good angels, of departed spirits, of Peter, Paul and John, of Christ, and of God.
Q. 18. How ought we to regard apostate angels? A. We ought to hate their character, to condemn their conduct, to fear their evil devices, to resist their wicked temptations, and to flee their unholy examples.
Creation and Primitive State of Man.
Q. 1. When did God create man?
Four thousand and four years before the Christian era; at the close, or on the latter part, of the sixth day from the commencement of the creation of the world. He was the last of God's created works. (a)
In what state did God create mankind?
A. He created them male and female, and in His own image, that is, intelligent and holy, and thus resembling in a degree their Creator, in His natural and moral perfections; He created them in the state of maturity, in full vigor of body and mind, in perfect felicity, and but little inferior in nature or order to the angels, and gave them dominion over the animal creation, and made them capable of perpetual progression in knowledge, holiness and happiness.(b)
(a) Gen. i. 27. 31. So God created man in his own image; in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God saw every thing that he had made, and behold it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.
(b) Gen. i. 27. So God created man in his own image; in the image of God created he him; male and female created be them.-Eccl. vii. 29. Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright: but they have sought out many inventions.-Eph. iv. 24. And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.-Gen. i. 28. And God blessed them, and God said unto them,
Q. 3. Is man a simple, or a compound being?
A. He is a compound being, having a body and soul. He possesses a completely organized body, formed of the dust of the earth, with the senses of feeling, tasting, smelling, hearing, and seeing; and a rational soul, of a pure, uncompounded, spiritual nature, having understanding, affections, and will.(c)
What is the duration of man's existence?
His body is mortal, and of short continuance; but his soul is immortal-endless in its existence.(d)
Q. 5. What relation does man sustain to this lower world?
A. He sustains the relation of its constituted head and lord.(e) Q. 6.
What was the place of residence, and the condition of the first human pair?
A. They were placed in the garden of Eden, or the earthly paradise, in the enjoyment of every terrestrial good.(f)
Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing, that moveth upon the earth.-Ps. viii. 5. For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honor.
(c) Gen. ii. 7. And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.-Eccl. xii. 7. Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was; and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it.
(d) Ps. xc. 10. The days of our years are threescore years and ten, and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years, yet is their strength labor and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away.-Matt. x. 28. And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul; 1 but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. -Eccl. xii. 7. Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was; and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it.-Luke xx. 36. Neither can they die any more, for they are equal unto the angels; and are the children of God, being the children of the resurrection.
(e) Gen. i. 28. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.-Ps. viii. 6. Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands; thou hast put all things under his feet.
(f) Gen. ii. 8, 9. And the Lord God planted a garden eastward in Eden, and there he put the man whom he had formed. And out of the ground made the Lord God to grow every tree, that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil.
Q. 7. In what did the chief happiness of man consist in his primitive state?
A. In knowing, loving, serving, and enjoying God his Creator, Preserver, and Benefactor.
Q. 8. Were our first Parents put upon probation, as it respects their moral conduct, immediately after they were created?
A. They were. As soon as life commenced, their moral trial commenced.(g)
Q. 9. In what relation did Adam, our first Progenitor, stand to his posterity?
A. He stood in relation to them as their natural head, (they descending from him by ordinary generation,) and also as their federal or representative head, as it respects their moral state. (h)
Rule of Obedience and Life to Man in his primitive
Q. 1. What rule of obedience and life did God give to our first Parents, in the state in which they were created?
A. He gave them what is usually denominated the moral law, which has its foundation in the nature and relation of intelligent beings. This arises solely from the character of God and mankind, and the relations they sustain to Him, and to one another.
Q. 2. What is the nature or character of this law? A. It is spiritual and perfect;-extends to all the thoughts, affections, desires, purposes, words, and actions.
(g) Gen. ii. 15-17, And the Lord God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden, to dress it and keep it. And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it; for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.
(h) Rom. v. 18, 19. Therefore as by the offence of one, judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners; so by the obedience of one, shall many be made righteous.
of men;;-can never be abated, altered, or repealed;-but is wholly immutable, and as durable as the existence of God and man.(a)
Q. 3. How was the moral law at first delivered to mankind?
A. It was written on their hearts-impressed upon their consciences; so that, by a proper use of their rational and moral faculties, they might have attained to a knowledge of their duties. The Creator may also have particularly instructed our first Parents in this respect.(b)
What obedience to this law does God require? A. He requires universal, perfect, perpetual and personal obedience.(c)
Q. 5. What is the sanction of this law?
A. Eternal happiness to the obedient, and eternal misery to the disobedient.
The tenor of the law is, obey and live, disobey and die. This sanction was necessary in order to give force and efficacy to the law. The religion of holy angels consists of love and obedience; such, too, was the religion of man in his primitive state. religion of man in his fallen condition consists of love and obedience, faith and submission. (d)
Q. 6. Is every deviation from this rule of obedience sin, and, consequently, dangerous?
(a) Ps. cxix. 96. I have seen an end of all perfection; but thy commandment is exceeding broad.-Rom. vii. 12. Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.-Matt. v. 17. Think not that I am come to destroy the law or the prophets; I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.
(b) Rom. ii. 14, 15. For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves; which show the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the meanwhile accusing, or else excusing one another.
(c) Gal. iii. 10. For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse; for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.Ezek. xviii. 4. The soul that sinneth, it shall die.
(d) Rom. vi. 23. For the wages of sin is death.--Matt. xxv. 46. And these shall go away into everlasting punishment; but the righteous into life eternal.-Lev. xviii. 5. Ye shall therefore keep my statutes and my judgments; which if a man do, he shall live in them: I am the Lord.