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Τ Η Ε
T a Time, when all Manner of ImmoА A
rality and Propbaneness seems to have overspread these Kingdoms like a De
luge ; when all Virtue and Public Spia rit has been openly ridiculed, and laughed out of Doors; whils Corruption, that Bane of all Goodnefs, Nursery of all Vice, and Root of all Evil, bas been as openly practised and defended; ta which bitter Fountain alone, are owing all the Calamities, under which this unhappy, and divided Nation has lately laboured, and without great Care, and due Amendment, may yet, we foar, languiso much longer. At such a Time, we say, when every Kind of Wickedness reigns triumphant, & Treatise, expressly calulated, to recommend and inforce the Practice of Virtue, by explaining and pointing out the full Extent of Every One's Duty, and at the same Infánt fhewing the Danger, and dreadful Consequences, of either neglecting or fwerving from it ; at such a Time, we repeat it, if ever, such a Treatise muft be absolutely neces; fary, though, sorry we are to jay it, there is then leaft Reason to hope for its being well received.
In effect, we do not much fatter ourselves with the Thought of seeing it in ihe Hands of the very Gay, the Fathionable, or Polite; and
much less in those of such refined Gentry, as glory in distinguishing themselves, by the modis Naine of Free-thinkers, under which they include Atheists, and Deifis, or somewhat yet worse: Nevertheless, bad as the Age is, we believe there are yet many, who are not arrived at that Heigbt of Licen tiousness, to make a Jeft of Damnation, and fcoff at all Religion ; ard from such, we do not despair of
a good Acceptance, even though they should be young, genteelly educated, and of à chearful Dilpohtion ; no Pains having been spared, to render it as agreeable and entertaining, as the Nature of the Thing would admit.
As for those, indeed, who are downright Giglers, and love nothing that will not make them laugh, or who are fond of loose Reading, they must not expeet to find any Thing to their vitiated Taste here; but, for such as have Solidity enough, to be pleased with a good Piece of History, or a mural Tale, whereby they may be at once improved, inftruled, and amused, they will here meet with abundant Matter of Entertainment. And there may be also fome Convenience, in this little Treatise, for those who are polite and fashionable ; provided they are not so far in the Height of the Mode, but they can bear to be seen sometimes in the Inside of a Church, and even to behave with Decency when there. To such as these, it is well known, that Sundays, with all the little Helps of Chit-Chat, Visiting, and Tea-Tables, are apt to hang very heavy upon their Hands; what then must they do, should they happen to be so much indisposed, that they can neither go Abroad, nor care to receive Company at Home? They may, perhaps, scruple to read a Play, or Prior's Poems, on such a Day; and to go through the Fatigue of poring over above a Chapter or two, in that Out
of-the-way Book the Bible, might increase their Illness, by giving them the Vapours ; in such sad Cafe, then, they may find this short Treatise, neither quite so tedious as they think the latter, nor altogether fo improper for the Day, as the former ; besides its having the Charms of Novelty to recommend it." We shall freely own, however, it was not for any of these beforementioned it was chiefly compiled; no, it was designed for the Use of such, as believe it worth while, now and then to think, of their future State ; and to consider, whether they are in the Way to eternal Happiness, or endless Mifery: To all fuch, we are perfwaded, the being instructed in the full Extent of their Duty, with regard to each of the Commandments, and at the same Time agreeably entertained, will be deemed no fmall Advantages; and thefe, we doubt not, even in the present Times, are sufficiently numerous, to take off a larger Impreffion, than are now printed of these Sheets.
ARON bis bafe Compliance with
the idolatrous Jews amazing. Page 97
Transgreffor both of the second
Abednego, his Fortitude and Zeal.
for the Honour of God, with its good
Absalom, the Enormity and Complication of his Sin,
Achan, bis Covetousness and Disobedience, how
Amphinomus and Anapius, their fingular Piety,
Adjuration, and its immediate Consequences, p. 147
Ananias and Sapphira, the bitter Fruits of tbeir
P 63, &c.
P: 300, &c.
Ariobarzanes, King of Cappadocia, bis extraor-
Belshazzar, his monftrous Wickedness, and imme-
Cydippe, fee Acontius.