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HE following Discourse is intended, not merely as an Answer to any particular Book
written against the Doctrine of Original Sin, but as a general Defence of that great important Doctrine. Nevertheless, I have in this Defence taken Notice of the main Things said against this Doctrine, by fuch of the more noted Opposers of it, as I have had Opportunity to read; particularly thofe two late Writers, Dr. TURNBULL, and Dr. Taylor of Norwich; but especially the latter, in what he has published in those two Books of his, the first intitled, The Scripture-Do&trine of Original Sin proposed to free and candid Examination, The other, his key to the Apostolic Writings, with a Paraphrafe and Notes on the Epistle to the Romans. I have closely attended to Dr. Taylor's Piece on Original Sin, in all its Parts, and have endeavoured that no one Thing there faid, of any Consequence in this Controversy, should pass unnoticed, or that any Thing which has the Appearance of an Argument, in Opposition to this Doctrine, should be left unanswered. I look on the Doctrine as of great Importance ; which every Body will doubtless own it is, if it be true. For, if the Case be such' indeed, that all Mankind are by Nature in a State of total Ruin, both with respect to the moral Evil they are the Subjects of, and the aflictive Evil they are exposed to, the one as the Consequence and Punishment of the other, then doubtless the great Salvation by CHRIST stands in direct Relation to this Ruin, as the Remedy to the Disease; and the whole Gospel, or Doctrine, of Salvation, muft suppose it; and all real Belief, or true Notion of that Gospel, must be built upon it. Therefore, as I think the Doctrine is most certainly both true and important, I hope, my attempting a Vindication of it, will be candidly interpreted; and that what I have done towards its Defence, will be impartially considered, by all that will give themselves the Trouble to read the ensuing Discourse: in which it is designed to examine every Thing materiał throughout the Doctor's whole Book, and many Things in that other Book of Dr. T-r's, containing his Key and Exposition on Romans ; as also many Things written in Opposition to this Doctrine by fome other modern Authors. And moreover, my Discourse being not only intended for an Answer to Dr. Taylor, and other Opposers of the Doctrine of Original Sin, but (as was observed above) for a general Defence of that Doctrine ; producing the Evidence of the Truth of the Doctrine, as well as answering Objections made against it:-considering these Things, I say, I hope this Attempt of mine will not be thought needless, nor be altogether useless, notwithstanding other Publications on this Subject.
I would also hope, that the Extensiveness of the Plan of the following Treatise will excuse the Length of it. And that when it is considered, how much was absolutely requisite to the full executing of a Design formed on such a Plan; how much has been written against the Doctrine of Original Sin, and with what Plausibility; and how strong the Prejudices of many are in Favour of what is said in Opposition to this Doctrine; and that it can
not be expected, any Thing short of a full Consideration of almost every Argument advanced by the main Opposers, especially by this late and specious Writer, Dr. TAYLOR, will satisfy many Readers and also, how much must unavoidably be said in order to a full handling of the Arguments in Defence of the Doétrine ; and how important the Doctrine must be, if true; I say, when such Circumstances as these are considered, I trust, the Length of the following Discourse will not be thought to exceed what the Case really required. However, this must be left to the Judgment of the intelligent and candid Reader.
Stockbridge, May 26, 1757.
The Editor has taken the Liberty of striking out a few Things froin the Preface and the Account of the Author, the better to adapt them to the European Reader; and has altered all the References, so as to suit them to the last London Editions of Dr. T-y's Books; whereas Mr. EDWARDS made use of the Irish.
ADVERTISEMENT. When the Page is referred to in this Manner p. 40. p. 50: without mentioning the Book, thereby is to be understood such a Page in Dr. TAYLOR'S Scripture-Doctrine of Original Sin. S. intends the Supplement. When the Word, Key, is used to fignify the Book referred to, thereby is to be understood Dr. Taylor's Key to the Apostolic Writings. This Mark [S] with Figures or a Number annexed, signifies such a Section or Para. graph in his key. When after mentioning Preface to. Par. on Epift. to Romans, there is fubjoined p. 145, 47. or the like, thereby is intended Page and Paragraph, page 145, Paragraph 47. The Letter T. alone, is used to signify Dr. Taylor's Name, and no other,
Τ Η Ε
Sect. VIII. The native Depravity of Mankind appears,
in that there has been so little good Effect of so mani-