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the fame Laws and Rules of Life, the fame Terms and Conditions of obtaining his Love and Favour here, and Eternal Salvation hereafter, from the Performance of which there can be no Exemption or Difpenfation for any one of us. The Sons and Daughters of Nobles, and the Children of Mechanicks and Pea fants, are under the fame Obligation to confecrate the Prime of their Days to the Author of their Being. If there be any Difference, those that are born to Wealth and Honour are upon that very Account fo much the more obliged to be mindful of God, and their Duty to Him, by how much a larger Share of the Divine Beneficence has been im. parted to them. The Arguments therefore which are ufed in the fore-mentioned Book to perfuade Young People, without Delay, to apply themselves in their tender Years to the Remembrance of their Creator, and the Care of their Souls, may be as needful to be confidered by the noble and honourable as by the meaneft Readers. And the Counfels, Cautions, Exhortations and Directions there gi ven, being useful and pertinent to be laid before them, as well as any that are of an inferior Rank, fome of them I know have afforded them their ferious Perufal. But yet for the further and more particular Inftruction of thofe among them who fhall be pleafed to read what is here offered I purpose, with God's Help, to confider,
I. The Difficulties and Temptations to which in their State and Condition of Life they are ufually expofed more than others.
II. The Poffibility of overcoming those Difficulties, and obtaining a glorious Victory over all thofe Temptations.
III. The Means by which (if rightly used) they may be, not only poffibly or probably but most certainly overcome.
IV. The Advantages which those that are in the upper part of the World enjoy above others, and the way to make an early and happy Improvement of them.
My attempting to give Advice to Perfons whofe Birth or Fortunes have placed them above the rest of Mankind, may perhaps be look'd upon by fome as a confident Undertak ing. But I have not adventured upon it without imploring his Leave and Affiftance who is infinitely higher than the higheft upon Earth, by whofe Bleffing, if these my well meant Endeavours fhall do any good, (as I hope they will) tho' it be but to a few, 1 fhall not be much concern'd for the Cenfure of others.
Gratitude alfo, as well as Hope of Success, has excited me to make this Effay. For having in my younger Time been Domestick Chaplain firft to a Knight, then to a Baronet, who was the
the only Son of a Peer and Privy-Counsellor, and afterwards for feveral Years to another Baronet, all which were of confiderable Eminency for their Piety and Virtue as well as their Honour and Eftates, and having by this means had the Opportunity of receiving many Favours, both from themselves and from their noble and honourable Relations, this has made me defirous to do fome Service, if I can, to the Pofterity of those by whom I have been fo much obliged.
I have no more to add by way of Preface, but only to let the Reader understand, that when I had almost finished what I have here written I met with that pleasant and pious Book, A Gentleman inftructed in the Conduct of a virtuous and happy Life, at the first Sight of which I had fome Thoughts of not fuffering my own to appear in publick. But after I had obferved how much they differed from each other in Matter, Method, and Stile, I was of Opinion that mine alfo might be of ufe towards promoting the fame good Defign which that aims at. God grant that by his benign Influence the one as well as the other may be attended with the most desirable Effect.
PAge 9. Line 14. read fpecious. p. 16. 1. 15, t. of much. p. 21. 1. 10. blot out that. p. 22. 1. 29. blot out of P. 25. 1. 29. r. Ill-nurture. p. 40. 1. 27. r. as well as his. P. 43. 1. 22. r. will be a lasting. p. 98. 1. 6. r. those. p. 104. I. 32. r. in my former Book. p. 114. l. 12. r. faltering. p. 115. l. 35. r. my former Book. p. 124. l. 4. r. Exinaniti on. p. 129. 1. 35. r. different.
Of the Difficulties and Temptations to which the Young Gentry may be expos'd more than others.
Ealth and Honour are great Theatres for the Exercise and Tryal of Human Life, to fhew what Temper a Perfon is of: And tho' they are earnestly defir'd, and vehemently purfu'd, and may with good Conduct be excellently employ'd, yet the early poffeffion of them in the rawness of younger Years, generally proves an impediment to early Piety, where due Precautions are not obferved. 'Tis no eafy thing to command and manage a high rising and flowing Fortune. The fuller our Sails are, and the wider they spread, the more hazardous will our Voyage be, through the bluftering Winds and Storms, and all the variable Weather of an uncertain World. B.
The Splendor of Dignity, and the Affluence of Profperity, do indeed Smile upon us, and feem to look very pleasantly; but alas, their glittering Allurements, intoxicating Delicacies, and treacherous Inchantments, are very apt to dazle the Eyes of the Mind; corrupt the Judgment; captivate the Affections, effeminate the Spirit, and weaken good Refolution. Thus they draw Men afide from the regular and steady courfe of Wif dom and Virtue, unless there be a diligent Circumfpection to avoid their Snares.
This is a Matter which ought to be truly and faithfully reprefented to Young Perfons of Quality and Eftate, not to difcourage and difhhearten them from attempting that which is of abfolute Neceflity towards their prefent and eternal Happinefs; but by fhewing them the Difficulties which those of their Rank may meet with in a Holy and Religious Life, to arm them against the Affaults of ftrong Temptations, to prepare them for the nobleft Conflicts, and to animate them against all their Spiritual Enemies: Over whom by the Divine Grace and Affiftance, they fhall certainly obtain a glorious Victory, if they Strive Sincerely, Fight Manfully, and perfevere in this Chriftian Warfare; as I fhall afterwards more fully fhew.
It has been an old Question, Whether a Rich, Honourable, and Profperous, or a Poor and Mean Condition, be most expofed to Dangers and Temptations? And certain it is, that both the one, and the other, have Perils and Difficulties enough. Upon which account, a middle State between the two Extreams, feems most defirable; according to the Prayer of Agur, who begged that he might have no more than a competent Livelyhood, left Superfluity fhould tempt him to Car nal Confidence, Profanenefs, and Irreligion; or Penury and Want, draw him to Theft and Perjury. Give me, fays he, neither Poverty nor Riches; feed me with Food convenient for me; left I be full and deny thee,and fay Who is the Lord; Or left I be Poor and Steal, and take the Name of my God in vain, Prov. 30. 8, 9. The Poor Man