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Job, All the while my breath is in me, and the Spirit of God is in my noftrils. Some of them derive the word ", tranflated strive, from 1, which fignifies the fcabbard of a fword, and fay, what the fcabbard is to the fword, that the body is to the foul; and: give this as the sense of the words; My Spirit, or the foul which I have put into man, fhall not always abide in him as a fword in its fcabbard; I will unfheath it, I will draw it out; he shall not live always, feeing he is flesh, corrupt, given up to carnal lufts; yet his days, or term of life, which I will now fhorten, fhall be one hundred and twenty years. Another of them delivers the fenfe of the words to this purpose; "My Spirit, which I have breathed into man, fhall not be any more in contention with the body; for it does not delight, nor receive profit from the defires of the body; for the body is drawn after beaftly defires, and that because it is flesh, and its defires are plunged and fixed in the propagation of the flesh: However, I will prolong their days one hundred and twenty years; and if they return by repentance, very well; but if not, I will destroy them
* Job xxvii. 3.
So fome in R. Aben Ezra in loc. R. Hona in Bereshit Rabba, fol. 223.
R. Jofeph Kimchi in R. David Kimchi, Lib, Shorash, rad,
žeš. my iDNA, what s will
V: EE I WER, in sun.. CONEMINE ARDIE MIL. Wasche. free hum, œ œino him, 65 K has lang time, him I fall be no lange a wik de mar know, that I am no Face ting berween mercy and wadgment, da at a point, being determina so punish h fince he is wholy given up to carnal de fures, when I have hard him an hand and twenty years more. This len
words much obrains among learned mon And if either of theit series be receive the reasonings of the Arminians from the words, in favour of any branch of the fcheme, fall to the ground; but I am will ling to allow,
3- That by the Spirit of God we are to understand the Holy Ghost; to Jonathen Ben Uzziel, in his Targum, exprefly calls him; and I am the rather induced to be lieve this to be the meaning of the phrate, fince the apostle Peter, when he speaks of Chrift's being put to death in the flesh, and
vid. Fuller, Mifcell, Sacra, 1. 5. e. 4. & Vacablas, P Capellus in loc.
quickned by the Spirit; which is to be understood of the Holy Spirit, adds, by which, i. c. by which fpirit, alfo he went and preach'd unto the Spirits in prison, which fometimes were disobedient, when once the long-fuffering of God waited in the days of Noah; which words refer to thofe in Genefis, and are the best key unto them, and comment on them. I proceed to confider,
II. Whether 'the Holy Spirit was in the men of the old world, fince, as it is obferved", the words may be render'd, My Spirit fhall not always ftrive in man'; and whether it may be concluded from hence, that the Spirit of God is in every man, from whom he may wholly remove through man's misconduct.
1. The Spirit of God is every where, in every creature, and fo in every man, as he is the omniprefent God: hence fays the Pfalmist", Whither shall I fly from thy Spirit? He may alfo be in fome perfons by his gifts, natural or divine, and that either in an ordinary, or in an extraordinary way, or by fome operations of his on the mind; which are not of a faving nature, nor defigned to a faving purpose; and in one or other of these fenfes, the manifeftation of the fpirit is given to every man to profit withal °; and the spim Barclay's Apology, p. 154. I Cor. xii. 7.
1 Pct. iii. 18, 19, 20. n Pfal. cxxxix. 7.
rit may be said to be both in the men of me old world and of this. But,
2. That he is in every man in a way ci special grace, and to faving purposes, provided they behave well, muft be denied; for every unconverted man is deftitute of the Spirit: Were the Spirit, in this fenfe, in every man, the indwelling of the Spirit would be no evidence of regeneration; the difference between a regenerate and an unregenerate man lying in this, the one has, the other has not the Spirit of God. Hence,
3. It is eafy to judge in what fenfe the Spirit of God does, and does not depart where he once is. Where he is only by his gifts or external operations, he may wholly remove, he may take away thofe gifts, or ceafe from thofe works, and men, notwithftanding thefe, may be everlastingly loft, but where he is by his fpecial grace, he ne ver totally departs, though he may withdraw his gracious prefence; his people may nor be indulged with his joys and comfort, aud in their apprehenfion he may feem 'se ken away from them, yet he always sonde in them; otherwite Chrit's way
perpetual continuance with IS MY not be antwer i, for was de dwelling
rance, or 2:
the text ten b
the men of the old world, but of his friving with them. Wherefore the next enquiry
III. Is, what is meant by the ftrivings of the Spirit? and whether through man's neglect of him, or oppofition to him, he may trive to no purpose?
1. The Hebrew word here used, fig-nifies to judge, to execute judgment, or pu-nish in a righteous way; and fo fome read the words, My Spirit fhall not judge thefe men for ever; I will not referve them to everlasting torments; I will punish them here in this world; for they are flesh, frail creatures; I will not contend for ever, neither will I be always wroth; for the Spirit fhould fail before me, and the fouls which I have made: Or rather the fenfe is. according to this verfion, My Spirit fhall not exercise judgment on them for ever, i. e. immediately, directly, at this very inftant ; though they are fo corrupt, I will give them the space of one hundred and twenty years to repent in; and after that, if they repent not, I will deliver them up to destruction; which accordingly was the event of things.
2. The word here tranflated ftrive, fignifies alfo to litigate a point, or reafon in a
P So Symmachus, Hieron. Trad. Heb. Tom. III. p. 66. R. Juda Bar Elhai in Berefhic Rabba, fol. 223.
9 Ifa. lvii. 16.