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9. And debilitate temptations to sensual pleasures
MISCHIEFS OF SELF-IGNORANCE,
BENEFITS OF SELF-ACQUAINTANCE:
IN DIVERS SERMONS AT ST. DUNSTAN'S, WEST;
IN ANSWER TO THE ACCUSATIONS OF SOME, AND THE
DESIRES OF OTHERS.
“For if a man think himself to be something when he is nothing, he deceiveth bim
self: But let every man prove his own work, and then shall he have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another. For every man shall bear his own burden."
Gal, vi. 3-5.
THE RIGHT HONOURABLE
COUNTESS OF BALCARRES, &c.
Though it be usual in Dedications to proclaim the honour of inscribed names, and though the proclaiming of yours be a work that none are like to be offended at that know you, they esteeming you the honour of your sex and nation; yet that you may see I intend not to displease you by any unsafe or unsavoury applause, I shall presume here to lay a double dishonour upon you: The one by prefixing your name to these lean and hasty Sermons: the other by laying part of the blame upon yourself, and telling the world that the fault is partly yours that they are published. Not only yours I confess; for had it not been for some such auditors as Christ had, (Luke xx. 20; Mark xii. 13,) and for the frequent reports of such as are mentioned, Psal. xxxv. 11, I had not written down all that I delivered, and so had been incapable of so easily answering your desires. But it was you that was not content to hear them, but have invited them to recite their message more publicly; as if that were like to be valued, and effectual upon common hearts, which through your strength of charity and holy appetite is so with yours. My own thoughts went in the middle way; neither thinking as those that accused these sermons of injurious tendency, against — I know not whom, or what, (that have been so long in contention, that they dream they are still contending, and fancy every word they hear, from those that their uncharitableness calleth adversaries, to signify some hostile, terrible thing; as the scalded head doth fear cold water :) nor yet did I think them worthy to be tendered by such a publication to the world: But valuing your judgment, and knowing that the subject is of great necessity, though the manner of handling be dull and dry, I hope it may be profitable to some, and I find nothing in it