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PREFACE.

These Sermons are committed to the press in compliance with a wish very strongly expressed by some who heard them delivered,—and whom to gratify is in itself a pleasure. With the exception of a verbal alteration here and there, they are printed as they were preached. I am well aware that my treatment of this vast subject is painfully inadequate; but yet I venture to hope I am neither doing wrong in giving publicity to these discourses, nor in desiring that it may be permitted to me, at some future period, to unfold more fully the rich treasures with which these words of the Infinite Wisdom are instinct. The reader familiar with the exquisite work of the Reverend Isaac Williams on the Passion of our LORD, will not need to be told where I have had suggested to me the structure of these Sermons: and in expressing my acknowledgments for the assistance derived from that work, I trust I may be allowed to breathe a prayer that it may please the great Head of the Church still to spare its Author in restored health to this our portion of His vineyard, to further by his piety and his wisdom that union in Christ's Church which he has so sweetly taught us is-

“God's own gift
Not to be seized by man's rude sinful hands,
But the bright crown of mutual holiness.”'

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Yea; “although,” (to use the words of one, for whose recovery from the jaws of death the Church, so often benefited by his sainted counsels, has much

son, in this her hour of trial, to be very thankful,) although, for our sins, the Church be now miserably divided, it may yet be once more united. Let us only believe that it still retains the powers of recovery: we are divided because we have so little faith in the grace of unity. Let us steadfastly trust that our long lost heir-loom will once more be found when, by the grace of God, the pride and arrogance, the selfishness and contentious spirit of man are brought down to obey the primitive traditions of the one Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church."9

For holiness and for humbleness, therefore, let us strive: and oneness shall come in an hour when we think not. Amen.

A. W.

Cheltenham,

Lent, 1848.

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Baptistery. Pref. Thoughts. ? The Unity of the Church, by the Venerable Henry Edward Manning, M.A., Archdeacon of Chichester.

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We enter to-day, beloved brethren, on that great and tremendous week in which we commemorate the awful Passion of Christ our LORD. Day by day will Holy Church guide us by the hand through Gethsemane to the Judgment Hall, or from the Judgment Hall to Calvary ; day by day she will teach us of love, and justice, and holiness, now by prophecy, now by narrative, and now by close and accurate reasoning. Her voice shall tell of the terrors of the law,-nor shall she be silent in respect of the mercies of the means of grace under the Gospel. But in all, she will turn our thoughts to Calvary, and to the Cross there planted,—and to Him Who died thereon. Yes, Christ upon His Cross,-a King to conquer sin, and death, and hell, -our Great High Priest to make the Offering of

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Himself for the guilt of a world lost in sin and wickedness,—our Prophet, schooling us in love, and reverence, and resignation : Christ upon His Cross,—our God wooing from His Mercy Seat, while setting up the rule and standard of His judgment: and showing forth in His own dire Sufferings, the doom which must be undergone by those who sin, while unfurling the ensign of the triumph which is theirs who follow Him, the Great Captain of Salvation. Such is the object to which our eyes are now turned; such the theme upon which, now especially, our thoughts should dwell. Let it be ours, therefore, thankfully to accept the Church's guidance in this matter. Let us seek to learn the mystery of the Saviour's Passion. Let us escape from the world, and strive to be with Jesus, day by day, in this the depth of His humiliation. Let each morning and afternoon find us present in the House of Prayer, at the hour of prayer, and let it be one lesson of this holy week to learn the blessings which belong to meditation, in stillness, upon that which we have already heard or are about to hear in the public services of the sanctuary. None so feel their ignorance of Scripture as those who know it best: none are so fully conscious of the depth of its wells of living water as those who have drawn most frequently and most copiously from their fulness. Be it ours, then, to seek for more and more of the knowledge of Divine things ; and while we own that this knowledge is mainly vouchsafed as

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