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or none, who are deemed great and wife in this age, to bear them company; yet they are kept in countenance by the practice of the best and greatest of men,—and the moft diftinguished faints that ever exifted in this world. Covenant-renovation having been the ufual mean of Reformation in the Church, and of reviving to the fouls of the Godly, fince the world began. In the next place, The argument taken from the approved example of the Saints appeared, by much, the easiest to be handled by the author, and understood by the reader. Examples are more readily comprehended than precepts and doctrines, or prophecies. The greater part of mankind are better able to judge of what is done, than what ought to be done. And, Providence having laid the materials to hand, honesty and diligence, more than capacity, were requifite for their arrangement. Thefe were fome of the reafons which induced him to adventure

on

on a publication. It is fincerely regretted, that fome material parts of information could not be procured by the author, in his prefent circumstances; but, where information was a-wanting, he chofe to be filent, rather than hazard conjectures. Some may cenfure him, perhaps, for producing too many vouchers, and others may ftill deinand more; but, as the former objection appears to be without foundation; fo he fhall endeavour to fatisfy the latter, when the defect of evidence, as to particular facts, fhall be pointed out. The formality of method, ufed in delivering the difcourfes at first, is ftill retained. It may appear infipid, perhaps, to the refined tafte of fome readers; but it was deemed proper to prefer order and perfpicuity to elegance; as divifions of difcourfes render them more memorable and plain to fome forts of readers.

It will alfo be remembered, by thofe who heard the first part of these Differ

tations,

tations, that fome of the Reflections are omitted, and others of them tranfplanted to a different place from that which they originally held. The fame. Reflection, having occurred oftener than once, is retained only in the place in which it appeared to be most proper.

THAT the Father of Mercies may accompany these Differtations, fo far as agreeable to his will, with his bleffing, is the earnest wish of

J. MUIRHEAD.

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