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SERMON

PREACHED

IN ST. HELEN'S CHURCH, ABINGDON,

August 18, 1835,

AT THE VISITATION

OF

THE WORSHIPFUL THE CHANCELLOR

OF THE

DIOCESE OF SALISBURY,

AND PRINTED AT THE REQUEST OF THE CLERGY THERE PRESENT.

BY

J. F. CLEAVER, M.A.

CANON OP ST. ASAPH, AND VICAR OF GREAT COXWELL, BERKS.

OXFORD

FOR J. H. PARKER;

AND J. G. AND F. RIVINGTON, LONDON.

1835.

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2 Cor. xii. 8, 9. For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.

And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee; for my strength is made perfect in weakness.

It would certainly have been interesting to have known, more particularly than we now can know, what that source of vexation was to which St. Paul made allusion in this text; that “thorn in the flesh,” that “ messenger of Satan to buffet him," which, by his own testimony, was inflicted on him, as a correction from the chastening hand of his divine Master; lest he should be unduly elated by the extraordinary favour, which that, Master had recently vouchsafed to him ; lest he should be exalted above measure, through the abundance of the revelations,” of which he had been made a witness ; a witness of “ things in heaven,” such as the eye of man had never seen ; and a hearer of

unspeakable words,” such as it were not lawful (perhaps not possible) for a man to utter.”

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