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shunning, as I proceeded, the discusfion of no disputable article that lay in the
In those metaphysical disquisitions, to which my subject occasionally led me, I have particularly aimed at Perfpicuity: sensible, that whenever a writer involves his ideas in Obfcurity, it will always remain a doubt whether he be satisfactory to himself, and is an absolute bar to the conviction of others. On subjects of that nature, it is not easy to write to the comprehension of every reader; but, as far as I was able, I have attempted to do it..
And as new Adversaries of a Religion, the Tenets of which are of a nature to excite none, but such as are Adversaries to human Happiness, are continually aiming at new Objections, or vamping old ones up in new stile and figure; I have, on every article, more particularly applied myself to the Exceptions of modern writers. Every futile objection, in the short form prefcribed on the present occasion, it was not possible to notice: of those that have been proposed to the public with most Plausibility, and retailed with the greatest Success, I have not designedly passed by any; for indeed I have observed none, that in the fair field of argument might not safely be met.
The plan I propofed to pursue, and which in the early Process of the Lectures I communicated to your Lordship, you were pleased to regard in a favourable light: I have now to wish the Execution may merit your equal approbation. But this in whatever degree your judgment may with-hold, I am easy in the persuasion, that your Lordship’s known Zeal for the Interests of our common Religion will with Candour regard a well-intentioned endeavour : a zeal, my Lord, which you have displayed in every situation of life; particularly in that exalted one, which afforded you the more ample scope for exertion : not terminating there in cold and languid Wishes, but
expressed in a cordial Attention to indigent and deserving Ministers in your Diocese; who have often found them felves promoted without Application on their Part, and often against the Application of Greatness and Power.
There is Merit in supporting an inferior Station with Firmness and Resignation : but much greater, as it is a much more difficult part to sustain, in filling an exalted one with Propriety and Attention; in which the Claims of Duty are more numerous, and the Charge of greater Weight. Our Minds indeed are formed with different Aptitudes : and some there are, that only feel themselves in elevated Situations where there is Scope for Exertion, and
Room fion :
Room to expand. But it is your Lordship's peculiar Felicity, to appear formed, or more properly to form yourfelf, for every
Situation in life, to which you have been occasionally called ; from the literary ease of academic privacy, to the highest honours of your profesto have in
every situation, through which you paffed, conciliated Esteem, and left it with the general Regret of those, with whom you have been respectively connected.
Those Inducements alone would have directed my pen to the Request already made, if more powerful ones were wanting: the Pleasure of acknowledging the Favours, I have from
your Lordship myself received; and the Sa