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Many of the friendly hearers of the following Sermons have often expressed a wish to the Author, that he would publish some of his discourses. To that wish he has at length yielded ; not only from the belief that a volume so sent forth will meet with a kind reception from those who have thus urged it's appearance, and who will see here recorded the general character of the preaching which they have been accustomed to hear; but in the hope also that it will probably be read by many more, within the immediate sphere of his labours, for whom he is equally anxious, and who, even if not in the habit of perusing the discourses of others, may yet be induced to take up those of their parochial minister. He has been influenced yet further by the conviction, that the benefit
arising from publications of this nature is not likely to be confined to the limits of a particular parish : since the addition of any writer to the ranks of those who have enforced from Scripture the same great principles, tends, by increasing the number of unconnected testimonies, to gain to those principles a more general and more cordial attention.
In selecting these Discourses for the press, the Author has paid regard to their practical tendency. It was formerly his intention to include several of a more strictly doctrinal character, and to add, on one subject at least, a regular series : to those among his parishioners who have stated a request to that effect, he begs to observe, that such a plan must not be considered as entirely relinquished, but perhaps only deferred.
The Sermon which may probably be regarded as the least practical is the twentieth. It is inserted by the desire of some individuals who heard it; chiefly, it is presumed, on account of the tribute of respect which it pays to the memory of one of the best and most exemplary ministers of the age, the late Reverend
John Venn. To a person who knew him so well and valued him so highly, as did his immediate successor, the argument was irresis'tible.
The Author has only to add his fervent prayers, that it may please God to render this volume subservient to the increase of true religion, and to the more extended influence of Christian charity.
CLAPHAM, May 16, 1827.