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JAMES WALKER, M. A.
OF ST PETER'S CHAPEL, EDINBURGH, &c.
“ Logomachies and wrong conceptions of words are often the foundation of
“ Let true charity prevaile, and the Gospel meekness; these would cut off
Manuscript Notes in an old volume of Controversial Tracts, with the
autograph of Dr Donne, Dean of St Paul's, London.
PRINTED FOR BELL & BRADFUTE;
The following Sermon, hastily written at disjointed intervals, when I was much from home, and had little leisure when I was at home, was never meant for publication. The request to publish, as is usual on similar occasions, was made ; but though it was urged by some of my brethren, with apparent earnestness, and opposed by none while I was present, I gave no concurrence, and had no intention whatever to comply with it. I have often published occasional sermons ; never willingly, and hitherto always, not in obedience to the first request, but in deference to the earnest and repeated solicitation of some friend or friends afterwards. I publish the following Sermon with great reluctance, and even with regret, not in consequence of any such solicitation from any quarter, but because some have taken offence whom I did not mean to offend, and to whom I cannot feel that I have given any cause of offence. I publish it, therefore, precisely as it was originally written, without any addition or alteration whatever.
Very soon after I returned home from the Chapel, I received the following information : “ I am sorry to “ find that some passages in it (the following Sermon) “ have so offended one or two of your hearers, that if you publish, one of them declares his intention to an.
“ swer you.” I went to the country the next day ; but about ten days after I received a letter on the subject of my Sermon from one of my clerical brethren, dated the 24th of June, together with a tract on Regeneration. The letter is written in a temper to which I have nothing to object. The tract which it recommends to my particular attention is very far, indeed, from carrying conviction to my mind: but I will not now combat its · positions, and I have no wish at any time to enter into that controversy. If my Correspondent, after seriously perusing my Sermon and Notes, and after referring, as I think he ought, to those superior sources of information which he will easily find, and some of which I have indicated, shall think any further notice of my Sermon necessary on his part, I will then pay to such notice all the attention which it may merit, and with every disposition, on my part, of Christian conciliation. My principles I must maintain, so long as they appear to me founded in truth and supported by Scripture-while, I trust, I shall always be found to maintain them with true charity and the gospel meekness.
I was, moreover, informed, that one of my hearers from the country, who certainly spoke the language of others, asserted, without hesitation or reserve, that I was so severe in my strictures, and so personal in my allusions, that I might just as well have named the individuals; and those individuals, of course, were supposed to be before me. Now, though a man is, by no means, an impartial judge of his own work, I certainly know better than any other person can know my own purpose; and I declare, in perfect sincerity and singleness