Baxter - Houston-Packer Collection BX5200 .B352 1835 v1

PART FIFTH. FROM THE YEAR 1665 TO HIS DEATH. THE reader has now traced the series of events in the life of Richard Baxter to théfiftieth year of his age. We have seen him approving himself the man of God in du; camp and in the court, in the rural parish and in the great metropolis; we are now to seehim in the decline of life, like the illustrious poet, his cotemporary, "unchanged," "On evil days though fall'nand evil tongues, In darkness and with dangers compassed round." At this period in his history, it is aprivilege to have before us his own deliberate review of the changes which had been wrought upon his mind and heart, in his progress from youth to the com- mencement of his declining years. This review is the conclu- sion of the first part of his personal Narrative, andwas written in 1664, the forty-ninth year of his age. It is presented here much abridged. " Because it is soul-experiments which those who urge me to this kind of writing do expect that I should, especially, cotnmuni= cate to others, and I have said little of God's dealings with my soul since the time ofmy younger years, I shall only give theread- er so much satisfaction as to acquaint him truly what change God hath made upon my mind and heart since those unriper times, and wherein I nowdiffer in judgment and dispositionfrom myself. And for any more particular account of heart occurrences, and God's operations on me, I think it somewhat unsavory to recite them, seeing God's dealings are much the same with all his servants in the main, and the points wherein he 'varieth are usually so small, that I think such not fit to be repeated. Nor have I any thing ex- traordinary to glory in, which is not common to my brethren, who have the same spirit, and are servants of the same Lord. And the true reason why I do adventure so far upon the censure of the world as to tell them wherein the case is altered with me, is, that I may take off young'unexfterienced Christians from ovér confidence in their first apprehensions, or overvaluing theiefirst degrees of grace,