The following pages consist of Extracts from sundry old and valuable Authors, taken by the person that now occasions their publication, in his private reading, who penned them down at sundry times for his own use, and with no other design: but having been recommended by a Christian friend to print them, and as he trusts he received benefit from them himself, he is desirous others might, under a divine blessing, do so likewise, and in hopes thereof he has complied.
It may be said, what need of such extracts when the books themselves are many of them to be had? In answer: the several authors quoted may never come into the hands of many, or others may not have the opportunity to read them so as to pick out the pithy and striking sentences therein contained: therefore, to view in so small a compass the excellent sentiments, sound divinty, and sweet experience of so many great writers now in glory, the collector hopes, cannot be unacceptable to pious souls; and especially as we live in a day of so great declension, when the love of many, and even professors of religion, wax cold, 'their hearts still and backward to divine and spiritual things, a too great cleaving to the things of time, and they find a need of the useof all means to revive the soul and raise it upwards.
The Reader is desired to excuse the order that might have been observed in selecting particular subjects, and ranging them by themselves, and every other imperfection, as the person who made this collection,does not propose himself as an author, nor did he design putting his name hereto but as an anonymous book does not make so good appearance, even when the author proposes not the least advantage of profit to himself, which is the case of this publication, and therefore hopes subscribing his name will not be thought ostentatious.
If this book is blessed to any poor soul for refreshment, establishment, and consolation, and is a means to draw the heart more out to GOD and his Dear Son, the collector of these extracts will have his sincere wish, who begs an interest in the prayers of the pious Reader, and is their humble servant,