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“IN THE THIRD YEAR OF CYRUS, KING OF PERSIA,"
TO THE PRESENT TIME.
By L. E. LINCOLN, LOWELL, Mass.
Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1843, by
L. E. LINCOLN, In the Clerk's office of the District Court of Massachusetts.
muo Games Huntley Campbell 1-21 1932
In consulting the works, and in listening to the arguments of various expositors of Scripture, the author has often felt that a style and character was too apt to prevail, which, though certainly right and desirable in all respects, when employed on grounds that are plain and undoubted, yet, where the sentiments embraced and expressed are contested, and where the determined object is investigation and strict search for truth, is peculiarly liable to fail of the result desired, through want of logical point and distinctness. In all investigations, the pillars of support and strength should be raised from and upon the ground investigated; and after this, whatever strength can be imparted from abroad, is not only admissible, but proper, and always to be desired : but these helps from abroad, can never, in themselves, be able to convince. The argument must proceed from the premises.
With such views, the author has endeavored to examine the prophecies of Daniel, and, in presenting his work to the public, before whom, in a like manner, he has never before appeared in the smallest degree, and, without a kindly hand to counsel or advise, he is necessarily affected with a sense of shrinking and distrust: and yet, believing
as he does, that the doctrines which his work contains are sound, and seeing no other means available, by which to present to the world a class of evidences, which, to his mind, are amply sufficient to create an expectation of the speedy consummation of all temporal things, he is influenced by a sense of duty. He thinks he has not hastily seized upon doctrines throughi love of novelty, or through the promptings of a disquiet spirit, which, impatient of a Christian life in a sinful world, would rashly hope anything, if so there might be change. Neither has he any evidence of the truth of his sentiments, farther than reason decides, that they are inculcated by the Bible.
To say that he has investigated his subject carefully and prayerfully, would be as idle as it would be useless; for, every reader, independent of what an author may affirm, considers himself a competent judge, both of motive and sincerity. If, then, any who may read these pages, shall decide that the author is influenced by a spirit of candor, and yet shall see him err, he will reflect that the same spirit which sought the right but by want of skill did choose the wrong, will, when the right and wrong are shown, relinquish the wrong and espouse the right. If, otherwise, any shall decide that fancy or frenzy, instead of reason, have guided the pen, that reader may perhaps reflect, that to oppose reason, in return, would be labor spent in vain, and that, though error be glaring, the cooling hand of time alone can effect a remedy.
In conclusion, feeling that he has designed ill to none, but good to all, he would press every one, as he may read, honestly to inquire—“ Are these things so ?" If they are, then let him who so judges be sure, that, by preparation of heart and life, he is prepared for these things when they may occur. If any judge they are not, still, let all be diligent to "follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.”
L. E. L. Lowell, April 4, 1843.