Background Image
Table of Contents Table of Contents
Previous Page  7 / 802 Next Page
Information
Show Menu
Previous Page 7 / 802 Next Page
Page Background

TO

THE

READER:

S

the

dignity

of

human

nature

is

in nothing more

evident

than

in

its Capacity

of

worfhipping

the

divine

Being; fo

the

beauty

of

religion

is

never more apparent,

than in the

becoming

lives

and converfations

of

its profelfors.

To

fee

a perfon fo far

mailer

of

his feveral paffions

and inclinations

to

fus,

as

enables

him

to

yield

an

uniform and conftant,

as

well

as

chearful,

o-

bedience,

unto

all

the

ways

of

holinefs,

mull

needs

aetra&

the

eyes

of

the be-

solder, and

flit up

force

defines

of

imitating

a

pattern fo

very agreeable.

Such

a

perfon, fuch

a

converfation

is

acceptable

to

God, and a greater ornament

to

he gofpel in

the

fight

of

man,

than

the

greáteft

èloquenee

of

exprefIion,

or fhe

deepeft fearches

into

its myfteries

can poffibly be

without

it.

It

is

not

the

cl'o-

quent tongue,

but the holy

heart,

that molt

adorns

the

true chrif

ian.

This,

as

it renders

him

mot's

lovely

in

the

fight

of

others,

fo

it

furnifhes

him

with

the

molt comfortable refeßions

to

himfelf.

The

praetice

of

true religion makes

a

man

feel

in

hisôwn

foul

thofe

fpiritual pleafures,

which

is

only

the

fubjeß

of

difcourfe

to

others.

Our author

was.

not

unfenfible

of

this,

but

laboured earneftly

both in

his

preaching and writing

to

promote an humbleand holy

walking

with

God. He

was

not a little

concerned for

the

great decays,

as

to the

fpirit

and power

of

ve-

ligion,

which

have been

ton

vifible

among many

profeffors

in

there

later

ages,

and

never

more

thanat the

prefent

time. This

put him upon

writing

thole ex-

cellent

pra&ical'difcourfes,

which

are presented

to you,

in

order,

to

excite

to

a

more

ftedfaft

communion- witKGnd, A

fiibieCs,

t-hongl'

little regarded by

force,

and

utterly defpifed by others,

yet

cannot, but be very acceptable

thole

who

have experienced

this intercourfe between God and their

own

fouls;

who

have

found

the

comfort

thereof in the

greateft difficulties, and have been fupported

by

it in

all

the

various

fames

of

providence.

Thofe who

have tailed

of

the

pow

-,

ers

of

the

world to come, whore

hearts have been

warmed

with the

love

of

things far

fuperior

to

all

the

delights

of

fettle, will

have

a

high efteem for what-

foever may

promote communion

with

God. Such perfons are

too

fenfible

of

the

power

of

indwelling

fin,

which

hats

fo often interrupted

them in their ho-

ly courrr, and labour after

a

mortification

thereof; neither

are

they

Unacquaint-

ed

with

the

ftrength

of

temptations, which

endeavour

o

feduce

them

from the

ways

of

God.

To

fuch

then, we hope,.the following

difcourfes

on

there

heads

will not

be

difagreeable, efpecially

confidering

the worth

of

that

great

Man

by

whom they

were penned, whore labours have been fo defervediywell

dteemed

in the church of

Chrift.

As