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The object of Mr. Mason's visit to Britain, is already known to the public. The increasing population of America, and the number of vacant churches with which he is connected, called for a supply of able preachers; at the same time that a Theological Library for the use of ministers and students, was much wanted. That he succeeded in obtaining a supply so liberal for both, is highly honourable to our age and country, while thousands will long remember with delight the discourses which he delivered in this city, and which we are happy to learn are intended soon to be published.

To those who have heard Mr. M. it is needless to attempt a description of his talents and manner: to those who have not heard him, any description must be inadequate. This eminent preacher is characterized by a certain originality of thought and style. Bold and animated, he transfuses great vigour aud spirit into his productions. His sentiments and language, even without the adventitious aids of his manly appearance, his deep-toned voice, his earnest look aud gesture, enlighten and impress. We hope that the present Volume will edify many; and that “ The First Fruits," here collected, will be generally relished as ripe and rich.

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PREFACE.

The subject of the following letters, and the views which they contain, have, for some time past, made a deep impression on the mind of the writer. They are the result, not of hasty opinion, but of solemn conviction, preceded by deliberate inquiry. All the authorities to which the author had access, have been carefully consulted; nor has any fact been advanced for which he had not ample proof; and often much more ample than the marginal references indicate. Whether his reflections on these facts are just, and his general argument conclusive, must be left to the judgment and conscience of the reader. Satisfied for himself, that he is pleading the cause of truth, and grieved at the supineness even of serious professors, he has spoken with freedom and decision. To insult the prejudices of good men, and of religious communities, is indeed neither decent nas wise; but it would be more than unwise, and worse than indecent, to sacrifice the honour of our Lord Jesus to the scruples

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