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PAR

T

l.

ReverendMr.

Richard

Baxter.

i

5

much more raw, and

had more Paffages

that

would not bear

theTryal of

accurate

Judgments

;

and my Difcourfeshad both

lets Subftance

and

lets

Iudgment

than

of

late.

z. My underftanding

was

then picker,

and could

eailyer

manage any thing

that

was

newly prefented to

it

upon

a

fudden

;

but

it h

fine

better

furnifhed,

and

acquainted with the

ways

of

Truth

and

Error,

and

with

a

Multitude

of

particular

Miftakes

of

the World, which

then I

was the more in Danger

of, becaufe

I

had

only the

Faculty

of

Knowing them,

but did not

adualy know them. I

was

then

like a

Man

of

a quick

Underftanding that

was

to

travail

a way which

he

never

went before,

or

to calf

up an Account which he

never laboured

in before,

or

to

play on an

Inftrument

of

Mufick

which

he

never

fawbefore

:

And

I

am

now like

one

offomewhat

a

flowerUnderftanding

(by

that

yræmarura fencing

which

weak

-

nefs

and

excelfrve bleedings

brought me

to)

who

is

travelling

a

Way which he

bath often gone, and

is

calling up

an Account

which he bath

often cart

up, and

bath ready at hand,

and

that

is

playing on an Inftrument which he had, often

playd on

:

So

that I can

very confidently fay,

that my Judgment

is

much

founder

and firmer now than

it

was

then

;

forthough

I

am

now

as

competent Judge of the

Aiding,

of

my own

Underftanding then, yet

I

can judgeof the

Ef)1"eélr

:

And when

I

perufe

the Writings which I wrote in

my

younger Years,

I

can find the Footfteps

of

my unfurnilhed

Mind,

and

of

my Emptynels and

Infufficiency:

So

that the

Man that

followed my

Judgment

then,

was liker

to

have been milled

by me,

than

he

that

Ihould follow

it now.

And yet, that

I

may

not

fay

worfe than it deferveth

of

my former

meafure

of

Underftanding,

I

thall

truly tell you what change

I

find

now, in the

perufal

of

my own Writings. Thofe Points which then I

throughly

fruited,

my Judgment

is

the

fame

of

stow,

as

it

was

tben

;

and therefore in the

Subftance

of

my Religion, and

in

thofe Controverfies

which

I

then fearcht into, with tome etxraordinary Dili-

gence,

I

find

not my mind

difpofed

to

a

Change:

But in divers Points

that

1

ftudi-

ed (lightly and by the halves, and

in many things which I took upon

trail

from

others,

I

have found

line

that my Apprehenfions were either erroneous, or

very

lame. And thofe things

which I

was

Orthodox

in, Ihadeither infufficientReafons

for,

or

a

mixture of

fome found and fome

inEfficient

ones,

or

elle

an

infufficient

Apprehenfion

of

thofe Reafons

fo

that

Ifcarcely knew what

I

teemed

to

know

:

And

though in

my

Writings

I

foundlittle in fubilance which my prefent

Judgment

differeth from

,

yet in my

Ayberifms

and

Saint,

Raft

( which were my

firft

Writings)

I

find fome raw

unmeet Expreffions; and one common Infirmity

I

perceive,

that

I

put

off

Matters

with

fome kind

of

Confidence,

as

if

I

had

done

fomething new or more than ordinary

in

them,

when upon my more mature

Re-

views,

I

find

that I

faid

not half that which the

Subject did require

:

As

E.

g. in

the

Doârine of

the Covenants, and

of

Juftification, but

efpecially about the

Di-

vine Authority

of

the Scripture in the fecund part

of

the

Saint,

Reft

;

where

I

have

not

Paid

half that

fhould have been

laid ; and

the

Reafòn was, becaufe

that

I

had

not read any

of

the

fuller

fort

of

Books

that

are

written

on thole Subjeâs,

nor

converfed with thofe

that

knew more than my

felf,

and

fo

all

thofe

things

were either new or great to me, which were common and

fmall

perhaps

to others;

and

becaufe

they

all

came in by the way

of

my

own

Study

of

the naked matter,

and not

from Books,

they were apt to

affeâ

my

mind the more,

and

to

feem

greater

than they

were.

And

this

Token of my

Weaknefs

accompanied

thofe

my

younger

Studies,

that

I was

very apt to !tart up Controverfies

in the

way

of

my

Praâical

Writings, and alto

more

defirous

to

acquaint the World with

all

that

I

took to

be

the

Truth,

and

to affault

thole

Books

by

Name which

I

thought

did

tend to

deceive them, and

did contain unfound and

dangerous

Dottrine

:

And

the

Reafon

of

all

this

was,

that

I

was

then

in

the

vigour

of

my youthful Apprehenfi-

ons, and

the

new Appearance

of

any

facred

Truth,

it

was

more

apt to affeâ

me,

and

be highlyer valued,

than afterward, when

¢ommonnefs had dulled

my De-

light

;

and I did

not

fufficiently difcern then

how much in molt

of

our Controver-

fies

isverbal, and upon mutual Miftakes.

And

withal

I

know not how impatient

Divines were of being contradieted,

nor how it

would

Itir up

all

their

Powers

to

defend

what they

have once faid,

and to

rife

up againft the

Truth

which

is

thus

thruft upon them,

as

the mortal Enemy

of

their

Honours

And I

knew

not how

hardly

Mens

Minds are charged

from their former Apprehenfions be the Evidence

never

fo

plain.

And I

have

perceived,

that nothing

fo

much hindreth

the

'Recep-

tion

of

the

Truth,

as

urging it

on Men with

too harih Importunity, and falling

too

heavily on

their Errors

:

For

hereby you engage

their Honour in the

bufinefs,

and