REV. AND DEAR FRIEND,
MOTIVES of personal friendship, respect, and obligation, together with public considerations, induce me to inscribe this volume to you.
The aid derived from your instructions in the prosecution of my literary, and theological studies, imposes obligations to esteem and gratitude, which render it proper that this essay, in defence of truth, should be inscribed to a friend and preceptor.
It is fit too, that an attempt to promote correct views of the Atonement, should be dedicated to one, who from the pulpit, and the press, and in private life, has exhibited the truth, and efficacy of this fundamental article of the Christian’s faith and hope. The church has also appreciated the worth of your Ecclesiastical Catechism, which displays accurate and lucid views of the government and discipline of God’s house;—of your Sermons on the Headship of Messiah over the Nations, on the Rights of Humanity, which have been so often, so long, and so grossly outraged, on the Ministry of Reconciliation, on the late War, and on the Life and Power of True Godliness;—and of your Lectures on the Revelations, unfolding from the prophetic scriptures, the past and present state of the Church of God, in relation to the empires of the earth; her future prospects; and the subserviency of all national movements, under the government of the Redeemer, to her interests. All these, together with your instrumentality in causing our New Testament Zion, “to lengthen her cords, strengthen her stakes, and stretch out the curtains of her habitation,” connect your name with the history of the church, by a tie that can never be broken, so long as her records are preserved.
That your useful life may be long spared;—that you may have health to complete the various theological works, which you contemplate;—that you may long continue to be a blessing to “the flock of God, over whom the Holy Ghost has made you an overseer;” and that, “in a good old age you may be gathered to your fathers in peace,” is the earnest prayer of
Your ever very sincere,
And affectionate friend,
Philadelphia, May 6th, 1817.