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PREFACE

The following selections have been made solely for their religious value and suggestiveness. The aim has been to have each reading a literary unit, dealing with but one subject, and enforcing a definite religious lesson. This has involved some verbal changes, and the omission of whatever would distract the attention, offend the moral sense, or start a divergent line of thought.

The readings are synthetic. In each selection the whole Bible has been drawn upon, as needed to develop the subject or to supplement the thought. Isolated passages have been brought into relation with the larger thought of which they are generic parts, thus utilizing many short passages which would otherwise be overlooked because of their fragmentary character.

Wherever practicable the classic chapters have been left undisturbed so far as their setting is concerned. But the purpose of the work has often necessitated some rearrangement of chapters. This is particularly true of the gospels, where the method of bringing together the various passages by subject rather than by chapter has occasioned some confusion. It is thus feared that the reader may experience some difficulty in finding a desired passage. To lessen this as much as possible, the volume is provided with an index, which includes the various topics of religion, as well as indicating the readings suitable for special occasions. It is believed that this will put the contents of the volume at the reader's service.

The design has been to make the selection representative and inclusive so far as the limits of the volume would permit; but with so large a field to choose from there is ample room for difference of judgment. It is hoped, however, that the selection may be deemed fairly representative of what is best in the scriptures, and that the method adopted may serve to reveal to the reader the Soul of the Bible.

Ulysses G. B. Pierce

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