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PUBLISHED BY T. RILEY, 161, FLEET STREET;
BY J. DRAKE, BIRMINGHAM; LOVE AND BARTON, MANCHESTER;
CONSIDERING the productions that are continually issuing from the British press, it is very surprising that between six and seven years should have been allowed to pass away without any particular call either from his brethren, the Wesleyan Ministers, or his lay friends of that community, for a new and complete edition of the Rev. Daniel Isaac's Works. Had he been a man of but ordinary talents, or one whose talents were but little known; or had the productions of his pen been of a light and ephemeral character, or of so abstruse and mystical a nature, as to require more labour in fathoming them, than the profit of their perusal would repay; or had they at the time of their publication been looked upon as obtrusive and inutile ; then there had been a sufficient and
very proper reason for the silence of the Wesleyans and others respecting these works. But that the writings of Daniel Isaac should have been consigned either to total or comparative neglect; a man whose works, though seldom polished, and sometimes coarse, are always sensible, generally sound, pointed, original, and weighty ; possessing the rare quality of taking the reader by the shortest course to the author's object; that writings of this sort, whatever be their theme, should neither be read nor sought after, augurs but ill for the taste and employment of the present day. But that they, occupied as they are in the discussion of some of the most important topics in the whole compass of christian theology, should remain uncalled for, is to the writer of this article a fact that is perfectly astounding. But to whatever cause the fact may be attributed beside, the writer will venture to affirm, that it cannot justly be ascribed to the want of freshness in the author's method of pursuing his argument, to the looseness of his reasonings in support of his general theme, or to the inconclusive bearing of his works upon their separate objects. So fully is the writer convinced of this, that he scruples not to hazard what little reputation he possesses in affirming, that there are but few works upon the same subjects, very few indeed, which either surpass or equal them in perspicuity, originality,
The writer cannot pledge himself for the correctness of
every sentiment set forth in these works, or for the propriety of every expression used by the author; for on several points included in the subjects that are discussed, the author and himself thought very differently, as the notes appended to the works by the editor will show; but with the exception of two or three instances, in which he knew it to have been the author's intention, had he lived, to give a new edition of his works to the public, to have made some verbal alterations, he has uniformly given the author's sentiments in his own language. And if in any case the editor thought it necessary to guard his readers against anything that is advanced by the author, of a more dubious and less justifiable nature, he has always done it in a note, with the word editor affixed to it. This liberty he claimed, or he could not conscientiously have undertaken the task of re-editing these works, dearly as he loved their author, and highly as he thought of his judgment and theology.
The several essays which are now for the first time offered to the public, as they had not the benefit of the author's last corrections, they cannot be expected to