To Messrs Ivison & Co, Auburn, New York

9 March 1833


[One of a number of "Recommendations" published in Josiah Hopkins, The Christian's Instructer, Containing a Summary Explanation and Defence of the Doctrines and Duties of the Christian Religion. Second edition (Auburn, N.Y.: H. Ivison & Co., 1833), pages 3-4.]


NEW-YORK, March 9, 1833

Messrs Ivison & Co.

I have just learned with great pleasure that you are about publishing an edition of Rev. Josiah Hopkins' "Christian Instructer." Frequent inquiries are made for it, and I have thought it very desirable that such a book as that should never be out of print. I have felt exceedingly desirous to put it into the hands of young converts, or recommend it to them, but have been pained that it could not be obtained. I have myself owned several copies, but could never keep one for any length of time, as so many were wanting it. I know of no book, the Bible excepted, so suitable and important for Christians as that. It contains more condensed matter, in a plain, familiar, common sense dress, than any other work on the doctrines of Christianity that I ever saw. Its principal excellencies, in my estimation, are the following:

1. Perspicuity of arrangement.

2. Perspicuity of style and argument.

3. Brevity.

4. Conclusiveness.

5. Fulness and richness of thought, in few words.

6. Uncompromising, though kind, in its positions on disputed points.

7. Lastly, and chiefly, it is, in my estimation, the true gospel.

Whether I should subscribe to every shade of sentiment inculcated in it, [page 4] I cannot say, as I have it not by me, and it is some time since I read it. But I am of opinion that it is as a whole the safest, most intelligible and consistent treatise on Christian doctrine that has ever come within my knowledge. It is just what every Christian ought to have and know.

Your brother, C. G. FINNEY.