To his Brother Samuel


October 15, 1735.

DEAR BROTHER, -- I presented Job to the Queen on Sun­day, and had many good words and smiles. [A folio volume in Latin, entitled Dissertationes in Librum Jobi, by his father, and dedicated by per­mission to Queen Caroline. John Wesley presented a copy to her Majesty on Oct. 12, 1735. Dr. Clarke (Wesley Family, i. 330) says that Wesley told him that when he was introduced the Queen was romp­ing with her maids of honor. She stopped her play, heard him gra­ciously, and when he presented the book on bended knee she looked at the outside, said ' It is very prettily bound,' and laid it down in a window without opening a leaf. He rose, bowed, and retired. The Queen bowed, smiled, spoke several kind words, and immediately resumed her sport.] Out of what is due to me on that account, I beg you would first pay yourself what I owe you; and if I live till spring, I can then direct what I would have done with the remainder.

The uncertainty of my having another opportunity to tell you my thoughts in this life obliges me to tell you what I have often thought of, and that in as few and plain words as I can. Elegance of style is not to be weighed against purity of heart; purity both from the lusts of the flesh, the lusts of the eye, and the pride of life. Therefore whatever has any tendency to impair that purity is not to be tolerated, much less recom­mended, for the sake of that elegance. But of this sort (I speak not from the reason of the thing only, nor from my single experience) are the most of the classics usually read in great schools; many of them tending to inflame the lusts of the flesh (besides Ovid, Virgil's Aeneid, and Terence's Eunuch), and more to feed the lust of the eye and the pride of life. I beseech you, therefore, by the mercies of God, who would have us holy, as He is holy, that you banish all such poison from your school; that you introduce in their place such Christian authors as will work together with you in building up your flock in the knowledge and love of God. For assure yourself, dear brother, you are even now called to the convert­ing of heathens as well as I.

So many souls are committed to your charge by God, to be prepared for a happy eternity. You are to instruct them, not only in the beggarly elements of Greek and Latin, but much more in the gospel. You are to labor with all your might to convince them that Christianity is not a negation or an external thing, but a new heart, a mind conformed to that of Christ, ' faith working by love.'
We recommend you and yours to God. Pray for us. -- I am

Your affectionate Brother and servant in Christ.

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