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Introductory Note

INTRODUCTORY NOTE.

THE pages of this book are drawn up from briefs and notes made by Professor Smith in preparation for his lectures on Apologetics, which were given in Union Theological Seminary in the years 1874-5 and 1875-6. The lectures referred to were the last work of this distinguished teacher, and consequently the little volume now sent forth exhibits his final judgment on the chief points in the conflict with unbelief. On this account it is believed that the outline of Apologetics which the following chapters present will be valued by all who knew the author. The projection of a work by him on a subject where he was an acknowledged master is likely to give intimations and clues which a complete volume by a less accomplished mind could not furnish.

The editor would say that he has strictly confined

himself to giving forth what the author left. It has

been necessary to make out some utterances from

hints on scraps of paper which were originally meant

to be reminders to the lecturer in the presence of his

class. But, with this exception, nothing has been added or changed. The fragment, as here issued, could have been made more symmetrical by including extracts from the author's manuscript lectures on the Introduction to Theology. But it has been thought best to give in this volume only the author's last survey of the field of debate between Christianity and its adversaries. Yet it will be observed that the work now presented relates to the three fundamental points of Apologetics, viz., the question of the Supernatural in its various aspects, the question, Can God be known f and the question of Miracles*

With regard to the prospects as to the publication of the lectures on theology, a word may perhaps be expected. The editor of this volume has carefully examined all that can be found of Professor Smith's preparations for his course in theology, and is of the opinion that a selection could be made which would secure to our lamented teacher a place of influence in American theology in some degree worthy of him. His estimates of the chief New England theologians, his strong grasp ttnd masterly summary of the debates upon the Atonement, and the serene judgment which he maintained in the midst of the speculations of the ablest German

* Evolution also is discussed in Appendix III.

INTRODUCTORY NOTE.

V

writers on the Person of Christ, could perhaps be fairly indicated in a volume such as we have in mind. If circumstances should permit, an outline of Professor Smith's theological system, with complete presentation of the lectures on the points named above, may, at no very distant day, be issued.

It should be added that Mr. William Allen Smith has kindly undertaken the revision of the proofs.

Hartford Theological Seminary,
October, 1881.