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TRINITY CHAPEL, BRIGHTON,
From August 15, 1847, TO AUGUST 15, 1853,
RECOLLECTIONS OF SERMONS
PREACHED BY THEIR LATE PASTOR
PREFACE TO THE ORIGINAL EDITION.
IN publishing these Sermons, a few words of explanation are necessary.
They are not notes previously prepared, nor are they Sermons written before delivery. They are simply "Recollections:" sometimes dictated by the Preacher himself to the younger members of a family in which he was interested, at their urgent entreaty; sometimes written out by himself for them when they were at a distance and unable to attend his ministry.*
They have been carefully preserved, and are now published without corrections or additions, just as they were found. Mr. Robertson attached no value whatever to them, and never gave any directions concerning them. The only Sermon which saw the light in his lifetime is now republished in this volume, with his own preface, explaining how it was preserved, and that it was printed by desire of his congregation.
Unfortunately, in some instances this series is incomplete. The fourth of the Advent Lectures † was never written out, owing to his uncertain and suffering state of health; and this cause, combined with his remarkable dislike to recalling his discourses-a peculiarity known to all who were intimately acquainted with him-has made these
* A reference to a paragraph in his own preface to "The Israelite's Grave" (page 235) explains this.
† The fourth and last Advent Lecture was "The Jewish ;" on the text, "He came unto his own, and his own received him not."-John i. 11.
recollections more broken and imperfect than they would otherwise have been.
It is not necessary to say one word in this place of the character of Mr. Robertson's teaching; it is best illustrated in the published volumes of his Sermons; and yet it seems needful to say, that even these suggest but a very faint idea of the influence that teaching exercised on all who came within its sphere.
PREFACE TO THE FOURTH SERIES.
It is proposed shortly to issue a volume entitled "Pulpit Notes," which will consist of the skeleton or outline which Mr. Robertson prepared before delivering his Sermons. In some cases only a line or a single word is given to indicate a division of his subject; in others he has written out a whole thought, to be further amplified and completed in course of preaching.
The Editor believes that such a volume will be of service in two ways-first, as offering suggestions to preachers in the preparation or consideration of their addresses; and, secondly, as being sufficiently complete for purposes of home-reading where it is the custom at family prayers, or on Sundays, to read a short discourse, occupying but a few minutes.
With reference to the first of these, it seems to be felt very generally that the pulpit is not what it was originally intended to be. There is a wide-spread opinion that it was designed for the edification of the mind as well as the heart; and it may be that one great cause of the indifference with which men are said to listen to preachers, arises from the fact, that for the most part their addresses are far below the intelligence of their audience, who are wearied with the trite repetitions of platitudes that neither instruct nor inform. These Sermons and "Pulpit Notes" evidence the character of a teaching, not only earnestly listened to, but also most influential. Perhaps the contrast between