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Τ Η Ε
By ROBERT JENKIN, late Fellow of
St. John's College in Cambridge.
The Third Edition, Corrected, and very
Grays-Inn Gate in Holborn. 1708.
F 0 H N
EARL of EXET ER.
May it please Your LORDSHIP,
HE general Decay and Contempt of the Christian Religion amongst
us, has made me think, that I could no. better employ the Leisure, which, by Your Lordship's Favour, I enjoy, than in using my best Endeavours to sew the Excellency and the Certainty of it. And what I have done , is here humbly presented to Your Lordship, as of Right, and upon many Accounts, it ought to be.
The Honour and the Satisfaction which I have often had to hear your "Lordship Speak in the behalf of Religion and Vertue, encourage me to hope, that a Performance, though but such as this, upon that Subject, may obtain your Acceptance. And the same only of a Person of Your Lordship's 'Honour, and Learning, and Knowledge of the World, may perhaps be of more advantage to the Cause I undertake, than any thing I have been able to write.
Religion may seem, by Descent, and as
were, by Inheritance, to belong to Tour Lordship's Care : The Wisdom and Piety of Your Great Ancestor, appear to distant Ages in the Reformation, which, through . the Blessing of God, was in so great a meiasure, by His means, establish'd in this Kingdom. And. I have with joy often thought, that I could observe the Spirit and Genius of my Lord Treasurer B URGHLEY now exerting it self more than ever in Your Noble Family
, ' From whence, methinks, we may presage Happiness to the Nation, and may yet expect to see a true sense of Re
ligion revive, and may hope, that eren in our days, Christianity, amongst Englishmen, shall be more than a Name, which is every where spoken against.
An eminent Vertue is a Publick Good : There is a powerful and commanding Force in Great Examples, to countenance Vertne and discourage Vice and Profaneness ; to make Irreligion appear, as it is, base and contemptible in the World; to degrade it, and thrust it down among the lower and untaught part of Mankind. Much is not to be expected from the Schools and from the Gown, under such Contempt and Discouragement. But the Great and the Honourable have it in their power to do great things; things worthy of Themselves, and
for the advancement of God's Glory. Perfons of High Birth, and both by Nature and Education fitted for the Highest Vndertakings, whose Vertues ball flourish with their Tears, and add New Lustre to their Hereditary Honours , may yet regain a due esteem to Religion, and adorn the Gospel of Christ. This is a proper Object for the