Abernathy - Houston-Packer Collection BX9178.A33 S4 1748 v.4

38 Men tempted to Evil by their own Luis. S E R M. or advantage of fome kind, to accompany II. the action he foliciteth him to : Is this any "'"""v--' fault on the part of the tempted, provided he doth not confent to the criminal act, but bath only the Pimple apprehenfion of the pleafure or advantage propofed ? And is not the cafe parallel, of him, to whofe mind the idea of the pleafure or advantage is prefented by his own lull, but he with equal inte- grity refufeth his confent to the finful means of obtaining it ? For infrance, the defire of riches is in itfelf lawful : Suppofe then that the fuggeftion arifeth in a man's mind, that by fome fabtle fraud, or by an at of vio- lence, by faulty parfirnony, with holding, an act of generous equity or beneficence, which religious virtue recommendeth, riches may be acquired or encreafed accordingly the unjuft action, or the mean and fordid refolution, is - propofed ; this is the tempta- tion, but it goeth no farther, the propofal is rejected with firm refolved honefty and good affe lion, and the directly contrary is chofen and executed. In this cafe, I make no difficulty in faying, there is no more fin committed, than if.the temptation had been offered by another perfon. To illuftrate this farther, let us obferve what we are all agreed in believing, as a moil certain truth, 4 that