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To the inhabitants of the Frontier Settlements,
whose edification and salvation are most earnestly desired, Grace, Mercy and Peace from God our Father and Jesus Christ our Lord.
I HAVE endeavored upon
different occasions, and by different methods, as the Lord afforded opportunity, to direct your attention to the ONE THING NEEDFUL ; to convince you that the redemption of the soul is precious, infinitely precious ; and that this redemption can be secured only by improving the sufferings and mediation of Jehovah the Redeemer. A desire to promote this important end constrained me at first to prepare, and now to circulate among you the following discourses. No novelty of doctrine is studied; those truths of the Holy Ghost are exhibited, which through his blessing have wrought mightily in all ages for the conversion, and sanctification, and salvation of souls. No elegance of manner is affected ; that language is employed which, with a humble dependance on the Lord the Spirit, appeared most calculated to instruct, and impress, and persuade.—“ And my speech, and my preaching was not with en
ticing words of man's wisdom; but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: that your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men ; but in the power of God.
The first discourse is intended to rouse the sinner from his security, and bring him to a consideration of his ways. The second is designed to preserve him from resting on false, unscriptural confidences ; on any other foundation than Christ Jesus the Lord --whom I have endeavored to exhibit in the third. The fourth is an attempt to illustrate the nature of that FAITH by which the sinner becomes interested in the Saviour, and grows up to the measure of the stature of his fulness." The fifth contains a variety of arguments urging all to close with this divinely gracious Redeemer without delay; and the sixth is addressed more immediately to the young, recommending early religion, early acquaintance with the Lord Jesus, and union to his glorious person as their happiness, and interest, and honor. These plain, scriptural truths I not only entreat you in the bowels of our Lord Jesus, but admonish you by the majesty of his final appearing, affectionately to receive and diligently improve. If these be neglected or forgotten, not only the love of the Father in giving his Son, not only the love of Jesus in coming and suffering, but the very anxiety of ministers in publishing, and the liberality of christian friends in diffusing
them must aggravate your condemnation and woe.
You will readily observe that a crucified Jesus is kept constantly in view throughout these discourses ; because, if we are saved, he must be “the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and ending” of our salvation. On this rock, Christ Jesus the Lord, in his atoning sacrifice, his everlasting righteousness, his covenant fulness on this naked rock thy soul and mine must be founded, or there remains nothing but disappointment in life, and despair in death, and damnation through eternity. That prayer inspired by the living God, and uttered by his holy apostle must receive its fearful accomplishinent, “if any man love not the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be anathema maranatha,” accursed from his presence and kingdom. The Lord the Spirit forbid that this doom should overtake a single reader of these pages ; but in the riches of his grace may “he convince thee of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment.'
That Christ may be formed in thee “ the hope of glory,” and that thou mayst be enabled to walk intimately with him as thy righteousness, and strength, and consolation, is, beloved reader, the prayer of thy servant, for this Jesus' sake.
ALEX. PROUDFIT. Salem, January 9, 1804.
PROVERBS VI. 9.
How long wilt thou sleep, Osluggard ? when
wilt thou arise out of thy sleep?
THE concern which a gracious God has manifested for the salvation of man, can be equalled only by our own carelessness and sloth.-In the counsels of eternity he devised a plan for our recovery from wrath; a plan to be executed in the birth, and sufferings, and death, and resurrection of his own Son. In the gospel of his grace he stands forth proclaining himself reconciled to the world, and “reconciling the world to himself.” He there appears making not only a clear revelation, but an unconditional tender of eternal life to all without exception. “Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no mo. ney: come ye, buy and eat, yea come, buy wine and milk without money and without price." The openly profligate, the most daringly impious are invited to return to the living God; and encouraged with the promise of the full, irreversible remission of their crimes. “Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts;"' he who has added injustice against men to his impiety against God, let him “return to the Lord and he will have mercy upon him;