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Preface

PREFACE.

This course of Lectures on the Evidences of Christianity in the Nineteenth Century was delivered, by appointment, as the first course on the foundation established in the Union Theological Seminary by*Mr. Zebulon Stiles Ely, of New York, in the following terms:

" The undersigned gives the sum of ten thousand dollars to the Union Theological Seminary of the city of New York, to found a lectureship in the same, the title of which shall be ' The Elias P. Ely Lectures on the Evidences of Christianity.' *

" The course of Lectures given on this foundation is to comprise any topics that serve to establish the proposition that Christianity is a religion from God, or that it is the perfect and final form of religion for man.

" Among the subjects discussed may be— " The Nature and Need of a Eevelation; "The Character and Influence of Christ and his Apostles;

" The Authenticity and Credibility of the Scriptures : Miracles and Prophecy;

" The Diffusion and Benefits of Christianity; and

" The Philosophy of Eeligion in its Eelation to the Christian System. •

" Upon one or more of such subjects a course of ten public Lectures shall be given at least once in two or three years. The appointment of the Lecturer is to be by the concurrent action of the directors and faculty of said seminary and the undersigned; and it shall ordinarily be made two years in advance.

" The interest of the fund is to be devoted to the payment of the Lecturers and the publication of the Lectures within a year after the delivery of the same. The copyright of the volumes thus published is to be vested in the seminary.

"In case it should seem more advisable, the directors have it at their discretion at times to use the proceeds of this fund in providing special courses of lectures or instruction in place of the aforesaid public lectures for the students of the seminary on the abovenamed subjects.

" Should there at any time be a surplus of the fund, the directors are authorized to employ it in the way of prizes for dissertations by students of the seminary upon any of the above topics, or of prizes for essays thereon, open to public competition.

"Zebulon Stiles Ely.

"New York, May 8th, 1865."