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THE excellency of this work appears not so conspicuous for the ornaments of its diction, as for the purity and importance of its doctrines, which were sealed with the blood of the martyrs of the 16th century; and, together with the Liturgy and Articles of our justly admired Church, form a bulwark against the united efforts of papists and dissenters.
However unimportant my testimony may be, I rejoice in having an opportunity of recommending these Homilies to my younger Brethren in the Ministry, and to my fellow Christians who are members of the same Apostolick Church, and who prefer sense to sound, and truth to declamation. They contain the words of eternal life, fairly deduced from the holy Scriptures, and are freely offered to the attention of every man who considers himself accountable to his Creator for his conduct.
That Almighty GOD may command his benediction upon this and upon every attempt to spread the honour of his name, and the good of mankind, is the fervent prayer of his unworthy servant,
C. BAYLEY, D.D.
Minister of St. James's Church,
MARCH 1, 1811.
CONSIDERING how necessary it is, that the Word of God, which is the only food of the soul, and that most excellent light that we must walk by, in this our most dangerous pilgrimage, should at all convenient times be preached unto the people, that thereby they may both learn their duty towards God, their Prince, and their neighbours, according to the mind of the Holy Ghost, expressed in the Scriptures, and also to avoid the manifold enormities which heretofore by false doctrine have crept into the Church of God; and how that all they which are appointed Ministers have not the gift of preaching sufficiently to instruct the people, which is committed unto them, whereof great inconveniences might rise, and ignorance still be maintained,
if some honest remedy be not speedily found and provided: the Queen's most excellent Majesty, tendering the souls' health of her loving subjects, and the quieting of their consciences in the chief and principal points of Christian religion, and willing also by the true setting forth and pure declaring of God's Word, which is the principal guide and leader unto all godliness and virtue, to expel and drive away as well corrupt, vicious, and ungodly living, as also erroneous and poisoned doctrines, tending to superstition and idolatry, hath, by the advice of her most honourable Counsellors, for her discharge in this behalf, caused a Book of Homilies, which heretofore was set forth by her most loving brother, a Prince of most worthy memory, Edward the Sixth, to be printed anew, wherein are contained certain wholesome and godly exhortations, to move the people to honour and worship Almighty God, and diligently to serve him, every one according to their degree, state, and vocation. All which Homilies her Majesty commandeth and