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LATE PROFESSOR OF CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY, IN THE THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY AT

AUBURN, NEW YORK

WITH A

SKETCH OF HIS LIFE,

BY

SAMUEL H. GRIDLEY,
PASTOR OF THE PRESBYTERIAN CONGREGATION, WATERLOO, NEW YORK.

C NEW YORK:
PUBLISHED BY M. W. DODD,

Brick Church Chapel, opposite City Hall.

1846.

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HARVARD COLLEGE LIBRARY

NOV 7 1878

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30

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Entered according to the Act of Congress, in the year 1846, by

M. W. DODD,

In the Office of the Clerk of the District Court, for the Southern District of the

State of New York.

EDWARD 0. JENKINS, PRINTER,

114 Nassau street.

PREFACE.

SOMETHING, it is supposed, should be said by way of introducing the following pages to the attention of the reader. In the first place, it perhaps ought to be stated, that however desirable it may be that some memorial of the Life and Character of Dr. Richards should be preserved, it is quite evident that nothing in the shape of biography was contemplated on his part. He kept no journal of his religious exercises, or of the important events of his life; and his written allusions to his early history, made in later years, are, for the most part, incidental in their character. A single scrap found among his papers, containing a few dates relating to change of place, and reaching as far as to the time of his going to Auburn, is the only document put into the hands of the compiler, which seems to have been written with a design to perpetuate the remembrance of anything connected with his history. It is also proper to state, that of the benefit of his written correspondence, beyond the pale of his own family, the writer has been able to avail himself only in the most sparing manner. Other, therefore, have been the sources from which information has been mainly derived in the preparation of the Biographical Sketch. The recollections of early friends (including the surviving brothers and sisters of Dr. Richards); church records; testimony of his parishioners when a pastor, and of his early associates in the Gospel ministry ; manuals of the churches of which he was pastor ; communications, written and verbal, from his colleagues in the Seminary at Auburn, and from alumni of the Seminary; the testimony of his own bereaved family; his correspondence with his children during the

last thirty years of his life, and the personal knowledge of the writer-these are the sources on which reliance has been placed. The compiler has taken great pains to furnish himself with facts, and has been careful to introduce nothing as fact, which has not seemed to be well sustained. He has visited the spot where the subject of his sketch was born, and passed the days of his childhood-conversed with his surviving brethren and sisters-handled the church record in which his name was written when first entering into covenant with God and his people, and entered the dwelling and surveyed the premises where he prosecuted, in part, his preparations for the Gospel ministry.

The Lectures found in this voluine, are published under the general direction of the three sons of Dr. Richards, though under the more immediate supervision of the youngest son, the Rev. James Richards, of Pen Yan, New York. They are now given to the press, in pursuance of earnest and repeated solicitations from ministers and others, and especially from the alumni of the Seminary, for whose benefit they were originally prepared. Two of them, namely, lectures “ On the Prayer of Faith,” were published several years since by request of the stndents of the institution, and the last, “ On Ability and Inability,” was published as a sermon, while the author was a pastor. It is associated with the Lectures, and therefore receives the family name. It is not wholly unworthy of the company in which it is found, though its relative position in the volume, through mistake, has failed to be what its topics might justly claim.

A short time previous to his death, Dr. Richards, in conference with his son, expressed a willingness that his lectures “On the Will,” together with a few others, should be published if his friends desired. Had he lived to supervise what has now been done, it is quite probable that he would have made the volume, in some respects, different from what it is. Some of his phraseology might have been thrown into a more popular form, and other and more important changes have been made. It may be proper to state, that some fault may easily be found with the

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