"Study to show thyself approved unto God; a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth," 2 Tim. ii, 15.
"Be thou an example of the believers in word, in conversation, in charity, in faith, in purity," I Tim. iv, 12.
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ADVERTISEMENT TO A LETTER TO A PREACHER
This letter, in miniature, was originally drawn up for the use of a young man in London, (Mr. Samuel Woolmer,) who, in the year 1797, gave up some flattering worldly prospects for the privilege of proclaiming the gospel of the grace of God, as an itinerant Wesleyan Methodist preacher; and who has since that time labored in his Master's vineyard with credit and success.
Some judicious friends who saw the plan urged the author to fill it up, and publish it; as something of that kind was much wanted, and was likely to be very useful both to the junior preachers and to the people. Submitting more to their judgment than his own, the work was accordingly sent to press, for the first time, in 1800. It shortly after went through a second edition; and that having been for a considerable time out of print, a third edition has been repeatedly required; and now a fourth.
In revising this work for another impression, many improvements suggested themselves, which were accordingly adopted; and several considerable additions have been made of subjects not less important than those previously introduced, which it is hoped will make the work more generally useful.
Many may be of opinion that the work might be still farther enlarged, with great advantage to the main subject. Of this the author is sufficiently aware; but as he intended no more originally than a letter, and not a labored dissertation on the Christian ministry, or any subject connected with it, he wishes still to keep within the reasonable bounds of his original plan.
Without the author's knowledge, two foreign editions of this letter have been published, one in the sister kingdom, and another in America: with what correctness the author knows not, as he has not read them. He is glad, however, to find, from the general report of his brethren at borne, that this work has not only met with their approbation, but has been very generally useful: and he hopes that in its present improved state it will be still more extensively so. This is the sole end at which he has aimed; and for the good that has been done by it, he cheerfully gives the glory to that God from whom all good comes; and to whom alone all praise and thanksgiving are due.
Millbrook, January 1, 1819.
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