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"HE that has the happy talent of parlorpreaching," says Dr. Watts,* "has sometimes done more for Christ and souls in the space of a few minutes, than by the labor of many hours and days in the usual course of preaching in the pulpit."
On my first intercourse with Mr. Cecil, now upwards of fifteen years since when in the full vigor of his mind, I was so struck with the wisdom and originality of his remarks, that I considered it my duty to record what seemed to me most likely to be useful to others.
It should be observed that Mr. Cecil is made to speak often of himself; and, to persons who do not consider the circumstances of the case, there may appear much egotism in
An humble attempt towards the revival of religion. Part 1. Sect. 4.
the quantity of such remarks here put together, and in the manner in which his things are said: but this will be treating him with the most flagrant injustice; for it must be remembered that the remarks of this nature were chiefly made by him, from time to time, in answer to my particular inquiries into his judgment and habits on certain points of doctrine or practice.
I have labored in recording those sentiments which I have gathered from him in conversation, to preserve as much as possible his very expressions; and they who were familiar with his manner will be able to judge, in general, how far I have succeeded. but I would explicitly disavow an exact verbal responsibility. For the sentiments I make myself answerable.
In some instances, I have brought together observations made at different times: the reader is not therefore to understand that the thoughts here collected on any subject always followed in immediate connexion.