On stated days your expectation looks to me for teaching. To perform such duty is to every minister of Christ the joy of joys. Beyond all doubt the pulpit stands the highest post of man to appear as ambassador of the King of kings, and to proclaim the way of life, is a privilege which angels might ambitiously desire. I strongly feel this--no words can tell my estimate of this grand work. This hallowed exercise requires vigor, and energy, and strength--in its discharge every faculty should put forth power. But when the weight of many years depresses, these qualities must cease to bloom--decay will follow in the footsteps of declining life. It is now mine to feel this common lot of old age, and hence I seek some substitute for public service in so large a church. To supply then this absence of oral address I venture to present this volume to you. Thus the pen strives to take the place of voice. Instead of looking on you congregated around me, I seek to sit beside you in your homes. At fixed times your attendance may be reluctant, and your thoughts may stray; I thus come when leisure gives me welcome. Without intrusion I solicit some vacant moments. You shall not complain of wearying lengthiness; your averted look is my dismissal. But while you read, I have a willing flock--and while you read with prayer, I teach to profit.