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ly finished it; he had prepared his Questions and Answers upon the second Petition of the Lord's Prayer; but lived not to propose them in the publick Congregation. God then translated him into his Kingdom of Glory above, while he was so industrioully endeavouring to promote the Kingdom of Grace below.

The other five remaining Questions and Answers (to compleat the Work) were done by a ruder hand; as may easily be discerned by any ob fervant Reader, who will find himself transfer'd froin a plain, clear, and delightful Stile, Method, and Manner, into more rough, disorderly, and unpleasant ones; for who, indeed, could equal this Divine Labourer? Nor the Compleater: who would account himself to have made very great Attainments in Divinity and Usefulness, if he were left but a few Furlongs behind him.

Let the Reader ufe and perufe this Piece, and he will see Caufe to bless God for the Author,

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R E A D E R.

HE Divine Providence having unexpeEledly cast

.my Lot for a few Days in Dartmouth, where that blessed Man of God Mr. John Flaveldid for many Years bonour Christ, and was honoured by bim; I have been favoured with a sight of that most judicious Explication of the Assemblies Catechism, which is emitted berewitb.

Being desired to testify my Respeet to the worthy Author, by Prefacing this Excellent Labour of his with a few Lines; I can truly say (as sometimes Beza of Calvin) Now Mr. Flavel is dead, Life will be less sweet, and Death less bitter to me.

My heart bleeds to look on this defalate Place, and not to see him, that will living, was the Glory of it.

But neither the Author, nor bis Writings stand in Need of the Commendation of others, much less of mine.

His Works already published have made his Name precious in both Englands, and it will be fo as long as the Earth Mall endure.

There are some Confiderations wbich may cause the Reader to expezt (and he will not find himself disappointed therein) that which is extraordinary in this little Manuel: for the Author's Heart was very much engaged in doing this Service for Christ, in

thus

thus feeding his Lambs. And be did bimself defign the Publication of what is here committed to the Press; and was very dehrous (with an boly Submission to the Will of God) to have perfe&ted this Work before his Decease: but had strånge Intimations that be should finish his Course, before that could be done.

When he did viva voce deliver his Meditations, there were many Enlargements, and lively Pallages which are not here inserted: nevertheless here is as much as be thought needful for publick View, not being willing, that bis Book jould be Volumi

nous.

In bis laft Catechetical. Exercise concerning Hallowing the Name of God, he was exceedingly enlarged; but be must himself go into the Kingdom of Glory, when he intended to bave discoursed on that Petition, Thy Kingdom come.

He also began Some Meditations on Joys of Heaven; But before he had an opportunity to express what had been in, bis Heart, the Lord Jejus said unto him, Enter thou into the Joy of thy Lord. And thus doth it happen maa ny Times to the eminent and boly Servants of God.

Another Confideration, recommending what comes herewith, is, that it was amongst Mr. Flavell's laft Works. Tbe (igedia giuata) Last Sayings of wise and great Men have been esteemed Oraculous ; and the Scripture puts an Emphasis on the last Words of David, the sweet Singer of Israel, 2

Sam.

Sam. xxiii. 1. Not that those were the laft Words that ever David spake, only they were written not long before bis Death, when be was come near Heaven.

So 'was what is now put into the Reader's Hand, written by Mr. Flavell not long before bis Translation to the World of Souls, where the Spirits of Just Men are made perfe&t.

There was a more than ordinary Presence of God with him to his last; and in his last Days, not the laft Sermon that be preached (which was June 21. 1691). He did more than once surprize bis Hearers with an Intimation that, that might be the last Time he pould speak to them in the Name of the Lord. . Aud was not then the Secret of the Lord with him? Dartmouth will know, and Devonshire will know, that there has been a Prophet among them.

And now my Soul bleeds to look on the dear Flock of God, which are as Sheep without a Shepherd. The Lord Jesus, the great Shepherd of the Sheep, bave Compasion on them, and give them a Sheperd like to bis blessed Servant Flavell, who did for many Years feed them with Knowledge, and with UnderJtanding

Dartmouth, March

the 2 ist 1691

Increase Mather.

AN

(1)

Α Ν

E X POSITION

OF THE

Affemblies Shorter Catechism.

WH

i Question.
Of Man's Chief End.
HAT is the Chief End of Man ?

A. Man's Chief End is to glorify God, and to: enjoy him for ever.

0. 1. Seeing a Chief {upposeth an inferior End; What is that inferior End for which Man was made ?

A. It was prudently, foberly, and mercifully, to govern, afc, and dispose of other Creatures in the Earth, Sea, and Ais, over which God gave Man the Dominion; Gen. i. 26. And God said, Let us make Man in our Image, after our Likeness: and let them bave Dominion over the Fish of the Sea, and over the Fowl of the Air, and over the Cattle, and over all the Earth, and over every creeping Thing that creepeth upon the Earth. So Pfal. viü. 6. Thou madeft him to have Dominion over the Works of thy Hands, thou haft put all Things under his Feet.

Q. 2. What then is to be thought of those Men, who being wholly intent upon inferior Things, forget and neglect their principal End?

A. They are dead whilft they live, 1 Tim. v. 6. But she that liveth in Pleasure, is dead whilf be liveth. They have their Portion in this Life, Psal. xvii. 14. From Men of ihe World, which have their Portion in this Life, and their End is , Destruction; Phil. iii. 19. Whose End is Destruction.

Q.3. How can Man glorify God, fecing he is perfectly glorious in himself?

B

A. Man

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