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Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1854, by
PREFACE TO THE REWISED EDITION.
IN performing the work which was requested of me by the publisher of this volume (who has purchased the copy-right of the heirs of the author), I have been careful to make no change in the thought of any portion of it. I did not deem that I had any right whatever to modify, in the least, a single view it contained. Its doctrines and expla- . nations belong to the author, and to alter them would be a sacrilege. The task I undertook was entirely of another character. When this work was written, the subjects discussed in it were new, and the views presented were radically different from those generally entertained. The author naturally felt a great solicitude to be distinctly understood, and to establish his position beyond contradiction. He, therefore, indulged in a repetition of questions, statements and forms of expression, which the present state of theological knowledge renders unnecessary. This remark will indicate to the reader all the changes that have been made, except in the abridgment of sentences not as concise as they might have been. What has been added is over my own initials.
Though I read this Inquiry with care and profit in the early part of my ministry, and though in my theological studies I have had frequent occasion to consult its pages, I was never so deeply impressed with its great value as I am now. The author was very thorough in his researches, and performed the task which he undertook with remarkable ability. While no one had preceded him in his investigation for the purpose which he had in view, none who have followed him have been more thorough and satisfactory. I do not mean by this to say that in every point he attempted to make he was conclusive or clear, or that I concur in every opinion he expressed; but this I mean to say, that he entered upon his labor with a mind well stored with knowledge, that he had that strength and acuteness of intellect which enabled him to write with a powerful pen, and that he has proved his main positions beyond controversy. For honesty of heart, devotion to truth, and respect for the Scriptures, no man was his superior.
The appearance of this Inquiry produced a great sensation. The author, for over twenty years, had been an advocate for endless punishment, and during a great portion of this time had been on terms of