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With such a Variety of Blesfings hath God'furrounded You! and, that nothing may be wanting, he hath blefld You likewise with an Heart and Skill to use them. May You, thro' his Goodness, enjoy an uninterrupted Continuance of them; and such a Length of Days, as will give You Room to improve them to the utmost, for His Glory, and the Publick Benefit !
This, My Lord, is the Unanimous Wish of all that have been Oblig'd by You, of All that Honour You, that is, of Aų that truly Know
You; You; but of none more than Him, who now offers these Sermons to Your Lordship, and, with that Sincerity which becomes a Preacher of Divine Truth, professes himself to be, by all the Tyes of Esteem, and Duty, Gratitude, and Inclination
H E following Sermons, having been, most of
. One of them, Preach'd at Mr. Bennet's Funeral, was, soon after it came out, reflected
upon with great freedom, in A Letter, directed to Me from the Press; and exhorting me either to Defend, 'or Retract the Doctrine * there deliver'd ; * L. på wvbich is said to have offended many Serious Unas. derstanding Christians t. I have the happiness, I + L. po thank God, to be well acquainted with several Persons 4. of that Character, to whose Judgment (having great Reason to distrusi my Own) I appeal'd on this Occasion. They assur’d me, that, upon a deliberate Perusal of that Sermon, they saw notbing in it which offended them ; or which could, in their Opinion , juftly Offend any, one, who belieai'd a Future State of Rewards and Punishments. Nor have I, after making what Enquiries I could on this head, met with any One Person, who carefully consider'd my Doctrine, and get judg'd differemily of it. I might well therefore have spar'd my self the Trouble of Reviewing and Defending, what appears nat to me to bave been blamd by any Wise, or Good Man: for, whether the Writer of the Letter, besuch, till I know who he is,
* L.po he says of himself is, that he is an Obscure Person *
3 One, I suppose, he means, that is in the Dark; and thinks it proper to continue so, that be
take advantage from thence to attack the Reputation of others, without bazarding bas own.
5, 44, 45.
be somewhat of Wisdom, perhaps ; but sure there is little of Goodness, or Fairness in this Conduet. Several such Obscure Persons as these we have had of late, who bave insulted Men of great Abilities and Worth, and taken pleasure to pelt them, from their Coverts, with little Objections. The Ill Success of their Attempts batb justify'd their Prudence in concealing themselves.
unknown Correspondent be, be presses 71.p. hard for an Answer, t and is so earnest in that point,
that he would, I perceive, be not a little disappointed if he should miss of it. Nameless Authors bave no right to make such Demands. However, the Importance of the Argument it self, the Serious Air with which he hath Treated of it, and the Solemn Professions be makes
of being atted by no other Principle but a Concern *Ibid. for Truth *, foon determin'd me to comply with his Ex
hortations. And what follows, therefore , was drawn
11, 12, 13.