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Taking a view of the thousands of volumes of religious works of all sorts and sizes, that issue weekly from the press, it seems almost labour in vain to write upon religious subjects. Yet looking, on the other hand, at the irreligious and profane works which superabound, I think I am justified in sending forth this little volume, casting my bread upon the waters, hoping through the blessing of God, to find the fruit after many days (Eccl. xi. 1).
When I consider, too, the many enemies that Christ and his gospel have, and how few are the advocates of his glory and truth, I am the less concerned for any charge of presumption that may be made against me in thus obtruding myself upon the notice of the public. Are not the enemies of justification by faith, and the glorious doctrines of free grace, aiming to sweep it off the earth? Are they not very diligent and laborious in their preaching and writing, and shall the friends of Christ sit still and look on? No. This is not characteristic of friends. The great apostle says, "I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth" (Rom. i. 16). Christ himself says, "Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed when He cometh in the glory of His Father with the holy angels." It is high time to wake out of sleep, and "contend earnestly for the faith which was once delievered unto the saints" (Jude 3); not only in preaching, but in writing too.
Again, viewing the greatness of Christ's person as God-man,
his glorious salvation, the perfection of his redemption, and the justification of his elect, my humble opinion is, that the ministers of the gospel cannot read, preach or write too much about Him.
I know and feel that the subject I have attempted to write upon is so great and sublime that it is far beyond my poor ability to do justice to it, (who can ?) yet, notwithstanding my inability, I am consoled by the reflection, that as my eye has been to the honour and glory of God, and I have written in accordance with the truth of the gospel (as far as my measure of grace and gift has allowed me), my little work is acceptable to my God and my Redeemer; for it is written, "if there be first a willing mind, it is accepted according to that a man hath, and not according to that he hath not." (2 Cor. viii. 11, 12).
This little work is not intended for the learned or wise of this world; but for the poor of Christ's flock, rich in faith, and heirs of a kingdom. It is for those who are brought up in the school of Christ, taught by His Spirit, feeling the plague of their heart, and knowing what a daily conflict is. It is for the doubting and fearing believer; the bruised reed and smoking flax. Such souls I hope, through Divine blessing, will find encouragement in perusing it.
Herein will be found doctrine, experience, and precept; in a word, a brief summary of the whole gospel.
Now may the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the Lord God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, and God the Holy Ghost accompany this effort with His divine blessing, to the conversion of sinners, to the comfort and edification of His people; so that it may redound to the honour and glory of a blessed Trinity in unity! EDWARD SAMUEL.
1, MOLIERE TERRACE, LOWER BROUGHTON,
MANCHESTER, MARCH 9, 1857.
PREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITION.
I FEEL thankful to the Great Covenant Head of the Church that I am enabled to send out a second Edition of "THE TRIUMPH OF CHRIST ON THE CROSS," such an event being beyond my most sanguine expectations.
This edition has gone through a thorough correction and revision; and I have added to it a Treatise entitled, "THE JUBILEE."
Reader, remember without the Cross of Christ there is no crown. "If so be we suffer with Him that we may be also glorified together."
That the Eternal Spirit may bless the reading of this little work to the conversion of sinners, and to the comfort and establishment of His people, is the prayer of him who is the least of all saints,
1, Moliere Terrace, Lower Broughton,
Manchester, Feb. 13, 1860.