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“ futation of Calvinism” was announced. For the composition of my Discourses I had avail- . ed myself of a season of comparative leisure, which more numerous and pressing parochial engagements have fince prevented from recurring : fo that, had it been my wish, it would hardly have been in my power, to devote due attention to the examination of any fresh publications. The truth however is, that it was not my wifh to be indebted to fo recent a production ; especially to one, which, from the exalted ftation and well-known character of the Author, might be expected to be received into general circulation. Although by earlier works, therefore, I have endeavoured to profit, without fcruple or reserve, (of which I hope that this general acknowledgment will be deemed fufficient, if at any time I have omitted to specify my obligation,) I determined to deny myself the fatisfaction, for the present, of reading the “ Refutation,” that I might at once avoid both the temptation, and the fufpicion, of being indebted to it.
Perhaps it may be thought, that I should have acted a more prudent part, if I had declined my own attempt, on the appearance of the Bihop of Lincoln's work. Had I been apprised of his Lordship's undertaking at an earlier period, it is most probable that I should never have engaged in mine : or, when I first became acquainted with that undertaking, hadi not my Discourses been designed for a specific purpose, and my intention of being a candidate for that particular appointment been declared, the work would then probably have been relinquished. After all, notwithstanding the publication alluded to, if I do not magnify the importance of the Inquiry, in which I have been occupied, I am willing to think that it may not be altogether useless. The course of my subject has led me to notice some particulars, which can hardly have entered into a “ Refutation of Calvinism :" and even with respect to those, which are common to both inquiries, the more fuperficial exami-, nation of the Predestinarian system, to which my limits and my abilities have confined me, may (by the blessing of God) be not unprofitable to those, who have not opportunity for studying bis Lordship’s more elaborate pro-, duétion.
: I have only to add, that being desirous of comprising the whole of my observations in the body of the work, instead of throwing any part of them into notes, I found that most of the following Discourses had run to a greater length than was adapted to the pulpit, and therefore shortened them in the delivery.
Though I preach the Gospel, I have nothing to
glory of: for necessity is laid upon me;
CHRISTIAN WORKS A NECESSARY CONDITION OF
CALVINISM INCONSISTENT WITH THE DIVINE
DITIONS OF THE GOSPEL COVENANT.
A SPECIAL AND INSTANTANEOUS CONVERSION NOT
NECESSARY FOR CHRISTIANS.