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CONTENTS.

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PREFACE

TO THE FIRST EDITION.

WHEN the following pages were written, (1781,) the author had no intention of publishing them. He had formerly entertained different sentiments. For some few years, however, he had begun to doubt whether all his principles on these subjects were scriptural. These doubts arose chiefly from thinking on some passages of scripture; particularly, the lat« ter part of the second Psalm, where kings who set themselves against the Lord, and against his Anointed, are positively commanded to kiss the Son: also, the preaching of John the Baptist, Christ, and his apostles; who, he found, did not hesitate to address unconverted sinners; and that, in the most pointed manner: saying, Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.Repent, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out. And it appeared, to him, there must be a most unwarrantable force put upon these passages, to make them mean any other repentance and faith than such as are connected with salvation...

Reading the lives and labours of such men as Elliot, Brain. erd, and several others, who preached Christ with so much success to the American Indians, had an effect upon him. Their work, like that of the apostles, seemed to be plain be. fore them. They appeared, to him, in their addresses to those poor, benighted heathens, to have none of those difficulties with which he felt himself encumbered. These things led him to the throne of grace, to implore instruction and

VOL, I.

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It appeared to him, that we had taken unconverted after og
too much upon their word, when they tood us that !!!
lieved the gospel. He did not doub: but that they a r e
lieve many things concerning Jesus Cunst and has sila'.:,
but, being blind to the glory of God, as it is dispatch.com
face of Jesus Christ, their belief of the suspel A-Lk 1594
superficial, extending only to a few lacis, withce! in vse
of their real, intrinsic excellency; which, sincus speak i
is not faith. Those who see no form Dor Cone JM :::
Messiah, nor beauty, that they should deure Him, ate ..
scribed as not believing the report concerti:g him.

He had also read and considered, as well as he was
President Edwards's Inquiry into the Freedom of the W..
with some other performances on the differer.ce betuces ....
ral and inoral inability. He found much sa:sfaci na in! :)
distinction; as it appeared, to him, to carry with a 14:

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evidence to be clearly and fully contained in the scripting
-and calculated to disburden the Calvinistic sys.em cía:.
ber of calumnies with which is enemies have lunced il
well as to afford clear and honourable conceptuac i
vine government. If it were not the duty of u:cccvezet

ners to believe in Christ, and that, because of their ina ;
he supposed this inability must be natural, or somethi: 21..
did not arise from an evil disposition: but, the mere he (1.
amined the scriptures, the more he was conviced, 312 ,
the inability ascribed to man, with respect to beilevi....6
from the aversion of his heart. They will not Cline !
Christ, that they may have life ; will not hearken to the .ce
of the charmer, charm he never so wisely; w ll not seek af.
ter God; and desire not the knowledge of his ways.

He wishes to avoid the spirit into which we are ape to be
betrayed, when engaged in controversy -that of magildi 3
the importance of the subject beyond its proper beurds: yet
he seriously thinks, the subject treated of in the follow.: 8,
pages is of no small importance. To bim, it appears to be

the gospel as saving faith; yet there is an important difi terier inte ideas which they attach to believing. This difference, with some ordinat taings, is examined, in an Appendis, at the end of this edition.

* Isaiah liji. 1, 2.

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