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Prefatory note.

An English Parliament was summoned by Cromwell, as Lord Protector, to meet at Westminster on the 17th September 1656. At this time Admiral Blake was pursuing his victorious career, and combating on the ocean the inveterate enemy of England and English Protestantism, — Spain. In order to obtain the supplies requisite for the maintenance of the war, the Parliament was convened, and Dr Owen preached on the occasion. The Parliament agreed to support the Protector in the war, and voted him for the purpose £400,000. The sermon of Owen is remarkable for the tone of cheerful gratitude pervading it, for the peace and freedom which the nation now enjoyed. While contrasting present advantages with the evils from which the country had been delivered, he warns his audience against any course that might expose them, under the judgment of God, to the loss of privileges so dearly won, and against indulging in the strife and animosities which would “turn judgment into wormwood, and truth into hemlock.” — Ed.

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