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" Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1847, by G. Lane & C. B. Tippett, in the Clerk's Office of the District Court, of the Southern District of New-York."
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The collection of this volume of sermons, from living ministers of the Methodist Episcopal Church, was undertaken with the approval.and co-operation of several brethren eminent for their piety and wisdom, as well as for their official standing in the church. It was hoped that the enterprise, if success. ful, would result in an addition of some value to an important department of our church literature. Our preaching, from the origin of Methodism, having been for the most part extemporaneous, few preachers have written and preserved manuscript sermons enough to form a volume. Even many of our most eminent divines and pulpit orators have left nothing behind them except the remembrance of their living efforts, and the results those efforts are continuing to produce. Hence the limited number of contributions that have been made to this branch of our literature.
We refer, indeed, with just pride, to the sermons of Wesley, Watson, and Clarke. The first distinguished for simple, clear, and strong exhibition of doctrinal and practical truth: the second for the classic beauty of his style, the aptness of his illustrations, and the clearness with which he perceived, tion; some, who furnished sermons, were delayed by other and more imperious duties; and others, who had promised a contribution, in the end failed to furnish it. To overcome all these difficulties, and to bestow upon
the work the amount of labor necessary, required time; but those whose sermons have been so long waiting to see the light, and the public who have had reason to expect the volume before this, may be assured that on our part there has been no unnecessary delay. Some names do not appear here that could have been desired; but all such names of course cannot be gathered into one volume, and we may be more successful in a second application, if the reception of this volume by the public should warrant the collection of another.
With these remarks we commend the volume to the favor of the church, and to the blessing of God.
D. W. CLARK. New-York, October, 1847.
P. S. To the authors we were not able to furnish proofs of their respective sermons, on account of their being so widely scattered, and the delay and derangement that would have been occasioned in the printing department. Every effort has, however, been made to secure accuracy.