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LATL PRESIDENT OF THE COLLEGE, AT PRINCETON NEW-JERSEY.
TO WHICH IS PREFIXED
An Account of the Author's Life, in a Sermon occasioned
by his Death, by the
OF NEW YORK.
IN THREE VOLUMES.
Printed and published by William W. Woodward, No. 17,
Chesnut near Front Street.
[COPY RIGHT SECURED.)
Was Published in the European, which makes but a part
of the American Edition.
THE following Treatises were originally published at diferent times, and some of them on particular occasions ; but the attentive reader will easily perceive one leading design running tbrough the whole. The autbor bat) long been of opinion, tbat the great decay of religion in all parts of this kingdom, is chiefly owing to a departure from the truth as it is in Jesus, from those doctrines which chiefly constitute tbe substance of the gospel. It may perbaps be justly imputed to other general causes in part, and in some measure to less universal causes in par. ticular places ; but as all moral action must arise from principle, oberwise it ought not to be called by that name, the immediate and most powerful cause of degeneracy in practice, must always be a corruption in principle.
I am sensible that many will be ready to cry out on this occasion, “ Sucb notions arise from narrowness of mind and uncharitable sentin « ments.” I answer, that it is surprising to think boru easily ibe fasbi. onable or cant pbrases of the age, will pass among superficial thinkers und readers, without the least attention either to their meaning, or to the evidence on wbich they are founded.
Tbus at present, if a man sball write or speak against certain princi. . ples, and stile tbem pernicious, it will be tbought a sufficient vindication of them to make a beaten common-place er.comium on liberty of conscience and freedom of enquiry. Blessed be God, ibis great and sacred privilege is well secured to us in this nation : But pray, is it not mine as well as yours? And is it not tbe very exercise of this liberty, for every man to endeavor to support those principles which appear to him to be founded on Reason and Scripture, as well as to attack without scruple every bing wbicb be believes to be contrary to either.
Let it also be observed, that if freedom of inquiry be a blessing at all, it can be so for no otber reason than the excellence arid saiuiary 11. uence of real truth, when it can be discovered. If truib and error are curally safe, notbing can be more foolish tban for a man to waste bis tiine in endeavoring to distinguisb ibe one from the other. What a view does