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WILL IT BE PREMILLENNIAL?
REV. DAVID BROWN, D.D.,
ST JAMES' FREE CHURCH, GLASGOW,
“Qua propter, qui dicit Dominum citius esse venturum optabilius loquitur, sed peri-
LONDON: GROOMBRIDGE & SONS.
PREFACE TO THE THIRD EDITION.
In this edition the text, without undergoing any important change, has been, it is hoped, considerably improved throughout. The additions--chiefly in the notes, but partly also in the text—which the replies to the second edition have rendered necessary, are more than counterbalanced, in point of extent, by the retrenchments which it has been found practicable to make; so that the bulk of the work is rather diminished than increased.
The courtesy and candour with which Mr Elliott has adverted to my arguments, in the fourth edition of his “Horæ Apocalypticæ,” I have endeavoured to reciprocate. My only regret is, that he has not seen it consistent with his plan to do more than touch, in the most cursory manner, upon some points which seem to me to be the hinges of this whole controversy.
This, however, cannot be said of Mr Wood's recent work, “ The Last Things,” in which the whole contents, not only of the second edition of my book, but of the first too_which contained a large quantity of matter not in the second—are subjected to a minute and laborious
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examination. To the arguments of this work I have endeavoured to do all justice, passing by only such as seemed to call for no special notice, or to be sufficiently answered by the simple repetition of the statements which called them forth. *
In conclusion, I would here devoutly acknowledge the blessing vouchsafed to this book, in the establishment of so many minds unsettled on the subject of which it treats. The
way in which the New York reprint of it has been received, encourages the hope that on that side of the Atlantic, as on this, scriptural views of the prospects of the Church may continue to prevail. May the Lord keep the eye of the Church-amid all the indications, whether of a dark, of a bright, or of a mingled Future, which the events of our time may be thought to present-upon " that Day” when He shall be “revealed from heaven in flaming fire,” to the terror of his enemies, and the joy of his waiting people. If this be our habitual attitude, it will matter comparatively little
The insinuation, once and again, of unworthy motives for the difference between the first and second editions of my book, after my own explicit statement in the preface to the second edition, is a blemish in this work which should have been avoided. At page 187, I have restored in full a reference which I had not thought it necessary to reprint in the second edition, in consequence of the sweeping denial of its accuracy by Mr Wood (Last Things, p. 43); prefixing to it another not likely to be disputed. In the preceding page I have rectified two notes consisting of Scripture references, in which, by some unobserved typographical mistake in the second edition, four out of six references were printed in the latter of the two notes which should have been placed in the former. In ascribing this to “unpardonable carelessness of quotation in one who undertakes a critical discussion"-a fault which I humbly think is not observable in my book-Mr Wood has scarcely done himself justice.
6 whether He shall come in the second watch," as one class think, “or come in the third or fourth watch,” as others think; for in either case, when He cometh we shall open to him immediately.
GLASGOW, November 1852.
PREFACE TO THE FOURTH EDITION.
I HAVE to apologise for the great length of time during which this volume has been allowed to go out of print, owing to other engagements and frequent interruptions.
In this edition the changes are chiefly in the notes. The reader will find in the foot-notes frequent references to Mr Birks' “ Outlines of Unfulfilled Prophecy” (1854), commencing at p. 80. I hope I have overlooked nothing of any consequence in that acute and excellent author's treatise, though it was impossible to take up his arguments at length in the text without re-writing some portions of the work altogether, and certainly not with advantage. This remark is still more applicable to “Plain Papers on Prophetic and other Subjects” (1854), to which I have made but an occasional reference. The school of prophetic interpretation to which its gentle and respected anonymous author belongs, is one whose principles would require separate investigation. I have had occasion to touch upon them more than once in the course of this volume, but could not do more than indi