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Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1833,

by STEPHEN COOKE, in the Clerk's Office, for the District of Connecticut.



The substance of the following chapters, was addressed to my own people, a few months since, in a course of Sunday evening lectures. The reason which induced me to attempt, in those discourses, a plain exhibition of the nature, design, and rights of christian churches, and of the duties and relations of church-members, was not any desire to waken the spirit of sectarian controversy, but a conviction that church-members generally, need plain and practical instruction on these subjects; and that in my own church, to which about one hundred and fifty had then recently been added, such instruction was at that time especially appropriate. Every pastor has occasion to see how liable the members of the churches are to fall into serious errors of practice, through the want of distinct information. Every pastor knows that when new members are received into the church, and are

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