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CHRISTIAN RELIGION AND CHURCH:
TRANSLATED FROM THE GERMAN OF
DR. AUGUSTUS NEANDER,
PROFESSOR OF MORAL PHILOSOPHY IN THE UNIVERSITY OF VERMONT.
NEW EDITION, CAREFULLY REVISED.
“I am come to send fire on the earth."-Words of our Lord.
can no man lay than that is laid, which is Christ Jesus."-St. Paul.
THESE volumes (vii. and vi11.) complete the translation of the General History of the Christian religion and church, as far as the work had been published when its lamented author was called away from the scene of his earthly labours. Another volume, as he himself intimates in the Preface to his Tenth Part, was to have brought the history of the church down to the times of the Reformation. What progress had been made by the author in preparing this interesting portion of his work for the press, I do not certainly know, though I feel strongly confident it must have been such that the last labours of the eminent historian will not long be withheld from the public. In a letter to the publisher dated April 9, 1848, Dr. Neander writes that he was then occupied with this promised volume ; and it is well known, that one of the last acts of his life was to dictate a sentence of it to his amanuensis. As he had therefore been employed upon it for as long a time, to say the least, as had ever intervened between the dates of his earlier volumes, it is not unreasonable to conjecture that the volume was left by him in a sufficient state of forwardness to admit of being finished without much labour. That it may be so finished, and the whole work brought down to the epoch to which the author in his later volumes was evidently looking forward as a resting-place, must appear highly desirable to every one who is capable of appreciating the minute and comprehensive learning, the scrupulous fidelity, the unexampled candour and simplicity of spirit, the unobtrusive but pervading glow of Christian piety, which have thus so far eminently characterized every portion of this great work.
If such a volume should soon be given to the world, the publisher of the present translation will take measures to have it converted into English.
J. TORREY. July 31, 1851.
OF THE FIRST PART OF THE FIFTH VOLUME.
TO MY DEAR AND HONOURED FRIEND
BISHOP IN STETTIN..
EVER since I had the happiness to be thrown by official relations, when you were still amongst us, into closer contact with you, and through your examinations over the department of practical theology, as well as by cordial intercourse to become more accurately acquainted with your peculiar spirit, your way of interpreting the signs of these times, labouring with the birth-throes of a new age of the world, and your judgment as to what the church in these times needs before all things else, I felt myself related to you, not by the common tie of Christian fellowship alone, but also by a special sympathy of spirit. And when you left us, called by the Lord to act in another great sphere for the advancement of his kingdom, your dear image still remained deeply engraven on my heart. In your beautiful pastoral letters I recognized again the same doctrines of Christian wisdom, drawn from the study of the Divine Word and of history, to which I had often heard you bear testimony before ; and when I had the pleasure of once more seeing you face to face, it served to revive the ancient fellowship. Often has the wish come over my mind of giving you some public expression of my cordial regard. To the bishop who in his first pastoral letters so beautifully refers the servants of the church to that which is only to be learned in the school of life, in History, I dedicated part of the present work, devoted to the history of the kingdom of God. And I feel myself constrained to dedicate to the bishop of the dear Pommeranian church, that volume of my work in particular which describes the active operations of its original founder. That kindred spirit, even in its errors, you will greet with your wonted benevolence.
May the Lord long preserve you by his grace for his church on earth, and bless your work !
These times, torn by the most direct contrarieties, vacillating be