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To the EDITOR.
Dear Sir, T Sincerely thank you for the Perusal of 1 your Explanatory Notes on the Chrifian Pilgrim's Progress; I really think your Plan is well adapted; the Notes judicious, spiritual, and evangelical; that they at once bid fair to inform the Reader's Judgment, and warm his Heart. You have, Sir, my best Wishes and Prayers, that the LORD the Spirit may graciously breathe upon them, and make them a lasting Blessing to many Souls. If you think my little Name may in the least Degree assist in recommending a Work I very much approve of, you are most çordially welcome to it. I am, dear Sir,
P R E F A.C.E. By the Editor of this IMPRESSION.
THE many Editions this work has gone
1 through, and the cordial Acceptation it hath met with from Persons of every Denomination, at once demonstrate its singular Excellency. The Method of Writing adopted by our pious Author, in his most valuable Book, has ever been acknowledged, the most useful and instructive, because the most engaging and agreeable. To offer any Arguments, in Favour of a Work so universally approved of, would be superfluous; the almost unequalled Simplicity of the Stile, and the great Depth of Christian Experience it contains, will ever render it a Book of real Worth. To this Edition is now first added explanatory Notes, which are written rather in the Form of a Paraphrase, as the Author's Intention was to take several Pages together, in one Point of View, that the Notes might be rendered more generally useful; at the fame Time the most striking Circumstances contained in the Text are alluded to, and implied, if not fully expressed in the Paraphrase. The Propriety of his Plan and Execution, must be left to the Determination
of the serious and candid Reader. He is happy in embracing this opportunity of publicly making his thankful Acknowledgments, of the Efteem and Friendship of those Gentlemen, who have been pleased to express their Approbation of his Design, and hopes it will be accompanyed with their Prayers, that the Whole may be made useful to themselves and others. · He has not intentionally written a Sentence' but what, he trusts, was clearly deducible from the Passage before him; neither has he attempted to pervert, or wire-draw, a fingle Position. His Endeavour hath been to offer a few plain Hints, such as the Subject naturally suggested to him, with a prac tical View to reach the Heart. · Reader, In the Course of these Notes, thou wilt find the careless Sinner alarmed of his extreme Danger; the Formalist detected in all the Splendor of a mere nominal Profession, and the true Believer furnished with some necessary Hints for Self Examination and Watchfulness.
May the eternal God accompany the Whole with his Blessing, and make it useful to the Souls of Men,
THE AUTHOR's APOLOGY
H EN at the first I took my pen in hand,
And thus it was: I writing of the way
Well, so I did ; but yet I did not think To shew to all the world my pen and ink In such a mode; I only thought to make I knew not what ; nor did I undertake
Thereby to please my neighbour, no, not I;
Neither did I but vacant seasons spend In this my scribble; nor did I intend But to divert myself in doing this, From worser thoughts, which make me do amiss.
Thus I set pen to paper with delight, And quickly had my thoughts in black and white. For having now my method by the end, Still as I pulld, it came; and so I penn'd It down, until it came at last to be For length and breadth the bignefs which you see. · Well, when I had thus put my ends together I shew'd them others, that I might see whether They would condemn them, or them juftify; And some said let them live; fome, let them die ; Some said, Fobn, print it ; others said not so, Some faid it might do good; others said, no.
Now I was in a strait, and did not see Which was the best thing to be done by me: At last I thought, since you are thus divided, I print it will; and so the case decided.
For, thought I, some I see would have it done, . Tho'others in that channel do not run: To prove then who advised for the best, Thus I thought fit to put it to the test. I farther thought, if now I did deny .. Those that would have it, thus to gratify; , I did not know, but hinder them I might Of that which would to them be great delight; For those which were not for its coming forth, I said to them, Offend you I am loth: