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    The following is an abstract of a sermon preached by Charles Finney. This abstract originally was part of a pamphlet titled The New Divinity Tried, by Asa Rand, and was a critical response to the theological positions expressed in the sermon. Finney states of this pamphlet, “I preached that the divine agency was that of teaching and persuasion, that the influence was a moral and not a physical one. President Edwards had held the reverse of this, and Mr. Rand held with President Edwards that the Divine agency exercised in regeneration was a physical one, that it was a change of the nature instead of a change in the voluntary attitude and preference of the soul. Mr. Rand regarded my views on this subject as quite out of the way, and wrote and published a pretty severe article at the time I was there in opposition to this view. There were some other points of doctrine upon which he dwelt in a critical manner, such, for example, as my views of the voluntary nature of moral depravity, and the sinner’s activity in regeneration.” According to G. Rosell and A. G. Dupuis, “Finney became concerned about the ‘garbled extracts’ that had been given to the public ‘by note-takers and reviewers,’ who he felt had ‘entirely misrepresented’ the doctrine of the sermon. So in 1834 he wrote a new version entitle ‘Sinners bound to change their own hearts.’” (Rosell & Dupuis, The Memoirs of Charles G. Finney, annotated critical edition, page 350) I do not have Finney’s on version available at present, and so offer this with the caveat that Finney believed it did not precisely convey his true intent.


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