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Although he has not omitted to expose, without palliation or disguise, the judgments of God, denounced in the Sacred Oracles, against unrepenting sinners, he has deemed it more consonant to the spirit of Christianity to dwell principally on such considerations as he conceived to be more congenial to the character of those who are denominated in Holy Writ adopted children of God, and who, as such, are encouraged to look up to him with reverential, indeed, yet filial, affection, as to their Father who is in Heaven. For
have not received the spirit of bondage again in fear,” says St. Paul, in his Epistle to the Romans, “but you have received the spirit of adoption of sons, whereby we cry Abba (Father.)” (Rom.c. viii. v. 15.)
Whilst the Author fondly cherishes a persuasion (and he hopes, in so doing, he is not deceived), that the promotion of the spiritual' interests, as formerly, of his hearers, so now of his readers, is the main object to which his feeble endeavours have been directed, he is not ashamed to confess his weakness, (if it be a weakness) in acknowledging the pleasure which he will unavoidably derive from the approbation of those whose good opinion he highly values; prepared, at the same time, in the event of failure in that respect, to submit with resignation, in the humble hope that even his unsuccessful attempt will be graciously considered by that Omniscient and Merciful Being, “who is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” (HEB. C. v. v. 12.)
Burn Hall, May 1st, 1834.
On the parable of the wheat and tares