PREFACE TO THE SECOND EDITION
The first edition of five thousand copies of "A Quest for Souls" was issued November 15, 1917. At this writing, March 9, 1918, this edition is practically all sold out, and it has become necessary to issue this second edition.
It has been in every way deeply gratifying to the editor and compiler of this volume that it has met with such a generous reception everywhere. I have the feeling that its circulation has really just begun and that many additional thousands of these books will go into the homes of our people at home and abroad, and that for all time this wonderful volume will hold its unique position in sermonic literature.
In sending out this second edition I have a renewed sense of gratitude to God for the privilege of having a part in the great good that has been and is being accomplished by this book.
J. B. CRANFILL.
PREFACE TO THE SIXTH EDITION
The present edition of "A Quest for Souls" is the sixth edition that has come from the press, making a total of 14,000 copies printed. It will be gratifying to those who have read this remarkably unique and wonderfully helpful volume of sermons that so many copies have gone out to bless the world.
Moreover, the present edition was sold in advance of its having gone to press.
The remarkable sale of this volume of sermons amply justifies the hope of the writer that it would occupy a place all its own in sermonic literature. Nothing like it has ever appeared, and, judged by the word that has come from every part of our field in America, and even from far off lands, this book is doing a work unequalled by any contemporary volume of sermons.
Notwithstanding the greatly increased cost of production, the price has been held as originally planned, at $1.50 a copy. Let every reader of these words join hands with us in giving this volume the very widest possible circulation. Wherever it goes men will be called to the better and higher life. Other volumes are soon to follow.
J. B. CRANFILL.
Dallas, Texas, February 14, 1920.
Ever since the appearance of the first book of sermons by Dr. Geo. W. Truett I have been urging him to permit the publication of other volumes, with the result that I am now able to present to the public this new and much larger book. His first book with the title, "We Would See Jesus, and Other Sermons," has passed into its twelfth edition, and is selling now very rapidly. That volume contained sermons he had preached in his own pulpit in Dallas, and a brief sketch of his life and labors. The present volume is unique, in that it is made up of a series of revival sermons preached in Fort Worth, Texas, to which are added the prayers offered by the author of the sermons during the meeting. The setting of each sermon shows forth in the sermon itself. These meetings were held under the auspices of the Broadway and College Avenue Baptist Churches, of which Drs. Forrest Smith and C. V. Edwards are the respective and nobly useful pastors.
It is proper to say that these sermons were stenographically reported by Mr. J. A. Lord, and that they appear practically without revision. I have gone carefully over them every one, but I was not willing that any substantial changes should be made in any of them. While I have not been privileged to examine all the sermon books extant that have been printed in the English language, I can truthfully say that there has never to my knowledge been a book of sermons published that carried messages more vital and winsome than are herein found. In their strength, their earnestness, their eloquence, their pathos, and their compelling heart appeals, they carry a pungency and power far beyond any other sermonic classics it has been my privilege to read. These sermons do truly justify the title of this book - "A Quest For Souls."
The great preacher whose sermons here appear is so shrinking in his modesty, which ofttimes reaches the point of timidity concerning any work of his own, that it has been a Herculean task to secure his consent to the publication of the sermons that are here given. The reader will rejoice, I know, when I say that I have in hand sufficient material for several other books of sermons by Dr. Truett, but I am having trouble all along to secure his consent and co-operation in their publication. It is only when I have pressed upon his great heart the insistent appeal that he allow his sermons to be published for the good they will accomplish in "A Quest For Souls" that my pleadings have been crowned with success.
And now it is with joy unspeakable that these sermons are sent out to the world. That they will accomplish untold good I have not the slightest doubt; that they will be a guide and help to many a preacher as he projects his revival services I am absolutely sure; that they will lead countless souls to Christ throughout the coming years I confidently hope. As I have perused them one by one I have been more deeply impressed than I have ever been impressed by the reading of any sermonic literature. It seems to me that no soul can resist the power and tenderness of their touching appeal. May God bless these sermons as He blessed the great preacher in their delivery, and may His enduring grace abound to everyone who shall read them throughout all the coming years!
J. B. CRANFILL.