by Thomas Manton
Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children.—EPH. 5:1
CHRISTIAN READER,—The many volumes of sermons that come yearly from the press may in all probability incline some at first to apprehend that, as to what is here presented, the publisher might have spared his pains. But till we can find another Dr Manton, and performances like to his, there is no sense in the censure. Of many attempts in this kind, it had been wished they had proved abortive, there arising no credit to those concerned, nor benefit to the world; but the excellence of Dr Manton’s sermons is so conspicuous, that none can attempt to detract from them, but it must be from ignorance or envy. Living and dying, he had that reputation for a king of preachers that hath been reached by few. Archbishop Usher was wont to say of him, that he was a voluminous preacher; not as if he was tedious for length, but because he had the art of reducing the substance of volumes of divinity into a narrow compass. Mr Charnock oft represented him as the best collector of sense of the age. And Dr Bates, in his sermon at his funeral, declares it with admiration, that though he was so very frequent in preaching, yet he was always superior to others, and equal to himself. Here are three substantial witnesses of undoubted credit; and he that won’t confirm their testimony with his own (upon the perusal of his composures) manifestly shows he hath no gust. No man spun a more even thread through all his sermons, which are as much of a piece as can well be conceived; so that if any of them are valuable, they are all so; for the same spirit and sense, substance and warmth, is discernible in all of them. As for this volume, it hath nothing spurious, nothing unbecoming the author, nothing mean or trivial; but it contains several as valuable and useful discourses as any that have been already printed. And if any have given themselves the liberty to say, The doctor runs dregs (the best being culled out before, and these the refuse left), it is a sign they did not know him; nor is it doubted but a perusal of what is here offered will rectify their mistakes. These sermons were all transcribed from his own notes, and crave the reader’s candour to give them that charitable allowance which is due to all posthumous works.
That light and love, knowledge and holiness, may be increased, and diffused more and more through this land and city, by all the labours of those whom Christ hath sent into his vineyard, is the hearty prayer of one of the meanest and unworthiest of them,
Manton, T. (1874). The Complete Works of Thomas Manton (Vol. 19, p. 168). London: James Nisbet & Co.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Sermon I. "Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children"
Sermon II. "And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling savour"
Sermon III. "But fornication, and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints"
Sermon IV. "Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient; but rather giving of thanks"
Sermon V. "For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God"
Sermon VI. "Let no man deceive you with vain words; for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience"
Sermon VII. "Be not ye therefore partakers with them"
Sermon VIII. "For ye were sometimes darkness, but now ye are light in the Lord: walk as children of light"
Sermon IX. "For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, and righteousness, and truth"
Sermon X. "For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness, and truth"
Sermon XI. "Goodness, righteousness, and truth"
Sermon XII. "Proving what is acceptable to the Lord"
Sermon XIII. "And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them"
Sermon XIV. "For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret"
Sermon XV. "But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light; for whatsoever doth make manifest is light"
Sermon XVI. "Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light"
Sermon XVII. "Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light"
Sermon XVIII. "See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise"
Sermon XIX. "Redeeming the time, because the days are evil"
Sermon XX. "Redeeming the time, because the days are evil"
Sermon XXI. "Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is"
Sermon XXII. "And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit"
Sermon XXIII. "But be filled with the Spirit"
Sermon XXIV. "Speaking to yourselves in psalms, and hymns, and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord"
Sermon XXV. "Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ"
Sermon XXVI. "Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God"
Sermon XXVII. "Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord"
Sermon XXVIII. "For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church; and he is the saviour of the body"
Sermon XXIX. "Therefore, as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything"
Sermon XXX. "Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it"
Sermon XXXI. "That he might sanctify and cleanse it by the washing of water through the word"
Sermon XXXII. "That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy, and without blemish"