Page images


either pray for me, or desire my prayers, whatever thy infinite wisdom knows to be most expedient forus. Requite all those who have been any ways instrumental to my good, according to their works; and forgive those that have done or wished me evil, and grant them repentance and better inclinations. All which y offer up unto thee, and humbly beseech thee to grant, for the sake and through the merits of thy dearly beloved Son Jerus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

The Thank giving
Lmighty God, Father of all mercies, J offer up unto

thy divine majesty my unfeigned praises, in return for all those numberless mercies and benefits which thou haft vouchsafed unto me: but y more particularly bless thy holy name for the mercies I have received, for ny deliverance from sin, and the temptations which have been conquered by me, and for all the good that y have done ; for preserving me in health and safety ; for the plentiful provision which enjoy by thy goodness; and for the continuing to me the enjoyment of so many comforts; as also for delivering me from the evils which y have most justly deserved, and to which y am continually exposed by the weakness of ture and the power of the enemy. Yet above all laud and magnify thy glorious name for the incarnation, birth, life, passion, death, resurrection, and ascension of my Saviour, thy Son, Jesus Christ, who is the foundation of all thy mercies, and the author and finisher of my faith ; in whole name alone y have a right to pray to thee, and to sum up all my prayers and prailes, saying, Our Father, &c.

Turtiaini. Then rising from your kners, if your time and bulines will porm, improve your jou! by reading Joine portion of holy jeripiure, mare ejpecially of the New Teitanzent. But first befeech your heavenly Father is oftell you with his Ilely Spirit, that you may sa undersland and praťtise kis cuord, that it feile make you wije unia jalzation, in fome jixo form as here followeth:

A Prayer for the right Use of the Holy Scriptures. BLeffed

Lessed Lord, who hast caused all holy scriptures to be

written for our learning; grant that if may in such wise hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them; that

Í may,

my na

I may, by patience, and comfort of thy holy word, embrace and ever hold fast the blessed hope of everlasting life, which thou hast given me in my Saviour, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Directious. In reading the great mysteries of faith, proftrate your reason to revelation, and lift up your beart continually to God in some short sentence agreeable to the subje£t you are reading after the manner following. And reading a littk at a tine, digeff it well for thy cornfort and praclice. And if time shall permit, read some part of this New Whole Duty of Man; for variety is found, not only to please, but to be the best way to infruct buman nature.

To be used while reading the Scripture.
LORD, give me grace to obey this command.

Or Lord, deliver me from this temptation, this sin, or this judgment.

Glory to thee, O Lord, for this mercy.

Lord, grant me thy grace to make my calling and election sure.


Diređtions and Prayers for Evening. At might Spare some time, before thou goeft to bed, for thy devotions; and laying aside all business and company, retire to thy closet, and begin with

The Preparatory Prayer.

soul thy Holy Spirit, to help my infirmities; and so dispose my mind, and prepare my heart, that my prayers and praises may be acceptable in thy sight, through - Jesus Christ, my Lord.

Lord. Amen.

Directions. To this add the prayer in page 444 for a right use of the holy scriptures; and then read fome portion of holy scripture, and of this New Whole Duty of Man, in the manner as directed just above. And, having composed thy thoughis, pray to God to enlighten thy memory in the examination of thy past life, saying. A Prayer for Sincerity in the Examination and Acknowledg

ment of our Sins to God, Eternal God, who searchest the hearts, and triest the

reins of man, who knoweft his thoughts long before; dispose me frequently to examine the state of my own mind,


[ocr errors]



and to compare my actions with the rule of thy laws: raise in me an abhorrence of whatsoever offends thee, that 'y may always turn my feet unto thy testimonies; and let neither selflove, Noth, negligence, nor any other darling passion, so impose upon or divert me from searching into the corruptionsof my own heart, as to escape my repentance : but vouchsafe me the assistance of thy Holy Spirit, that ) may so impartially judge and condemn myself, that y may not be condemned at thy fearful judgment-leat, and that in a full discovery of my own vileness y may humble myself under the rod of thy divine justice, and from my heart condemning all those follies whereby y have provoked thywrath and indignation against me, I may earnestly follicit thy pardon and forgiveness, thro’ the merits of thy Son Jesus Christ, my Lord. Amen.

Then examine your conscience by this short method.
A short Form of Examination of Conscience.
HAT sin have y this day committed in thought,

word, or deed ?
What opportunity of doing good have y neglected ?

Have y omitted or carelessly performed my religious duties?

Have y done any injustice to my neighbour in his body, family, goods or reputation ?

Am I willing to make him restitụtion, as J am able ?

Am J ready, as God has forgiven me in Christ Jesus, to forgive such as have offended me ?

Directions. To the above may be added such other questions as your particular circumstances may. require, which you will find more particularly set forth in the general heads of examination, which follow hereafter in these devotions, tefore the prayers for the fa

And thin confess your own guiltiness to Almighty God in this or fome fucb form as follozus :

A Form of Confession. Lmighty and most merciful Father, I have erred and strayed

loft sheep have fol lowed too much the devices and desires of my own heart. 5 have offended against thy holy laws. I have left undone those things which ought to have done; and have done thofe things, which ycught not to have done; and there is no health in me. But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon me, a miserable



and grant

offender. Spare me, ОGod,who confess my faults; cleanse me from all my secret and unknown transgressions, and be reconciled unto me, who am heartily sorry for my sins, and grieved that y have offended thee. Reserve not my sins to be punished in the day of thyfierce anger: but spare me,

that I may never fall into those evils, which my sins have justly deserved of thyjustice. Restore me that am penitent; according to thy promises declared unto mankind, in Christ Jesu, my Lord. And, as there is nothing fomuch defire as to beof the number of thine elect; forthy favour is better than life itself, and the most perfect freedom is not to be compared to thy service; grantmestrength by the assistance of thy Holy Spirit to forfake all my fins, and to reform whatever has been amiss in the temper and disposition of my mind, or in any of the actions of my life, that when y depart hence, J may be received into that blessed state, where sin and death shall have po dominion over me. All which y beg for the sake and in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Directions. After which acknowledgment of your own corruption and unworthiness, rener your resolution of amendment, and beg for mercy through Christ; and this not sightly, and only as of course, but with as much devout earnestness, as if you were sure that death were as near approaching as your sleep, which, for aught you know, may be jo indeed : and therefore you should no more venture to go to bed and to sleep unrecommended to God, than you would dare to die in that miserable fate.

Then offer up unto God the tribute of your evening facrifice of prayer and thanksgiv. ing; as well for his usual and daily

prefervations, as for his extraordinary deliverances; and above all, endeavour by the confideration of his mercies to have heart ibe more closely knit to him, remembering that every favour received from God is a new engagement upon you to love and obey him ftill more and more.

The Evening Prayer for Every Day.
Most glorious Lord God, although y know that thou

hatest iniquity with a perfect hatred, yet I am assured also that thou delightest in the ways of mercy; that thou art a tender lover of souls; and not only permittest, but invitest us, miserable creatures, to come unto the throne of thy grace, to be protected under the shadow of thy wings. Therefore, Lord, with humble confidence y lift up my soul unto thee, beseeching thee not to cast me away from thy presence; but, for the sake of my dear Redeemer, receive me gracioully to thy mercy, and let the merit of his bitter death and passion attone for all my follies and miscarriages. follies and miscarriages. Pardon, y meekly

beseech every kind and sort of evil, which is abominable in thy sight, and hurtful to my soul. Breathe into me, O Lord, a new heart, new affections, and new desires, that 'y may love thee with more sincerity, and serve thee with greater faithfulness, than I have ever done before. Open my eyes to behold the vanity and uncertainty of all things here below, and I may make thee my only joy and my delight, my stay and my trust, my guide and my counsellor; and grant that in the days of health and prosperity y may consider my latter end, and remember and provide for that great account which y must one day give before the judgment-seat of Christ; that when the hour of my departure shall come, y may meet death without feir or amazement, and with a well-grounded hope of thy mercy and goodness may chearfully resign my soul


[ocr errors]

beseech thee, whatever have done ainiss this day, and all my life paft, either against thee, my neighbouror myself. Convince me truly, O Lord, of the great folly and danger of fin, and make me fo afraid of offending thee, that I may abstain from all appearance of evil, and do nothing but what is pleafing in thy fight. Let the interest of my immortal soul be my chief care and concern; andgrant, that 'y may liveas becomes the gospel of Christ, denying all ungodliness and worldly lufts, and living righteously, soberly, and godly, in this prefent world. But, forasmuch as without thee I am not able to please thee, grant me the assistance of thy grace and Holy Spirit, that y may pass through all the temptations of this world with peace, and innocence, and safety; inable me to bear up,

with courage and resolution, against all the assaults of my great adversary the devil, who is daily lying in wait to destroy me. Cleanse me from all my secret and unknown transgressions : and grant that I may seriously consider and reflect

upon the foulness and deformity of fin, and what dreadful threatenings thou hast denounced against it ; that y may become a true and sincere mourner for my past fins; and, as far as is possible, redeem my mis-spent time, by employing the remainder of my days to thy service, and to thy glory for ever. Teach me so to number ny days, that y may become wise unto salvation ; and give me that hatred and abhorrence of sin and iniquity, that I may abstain from

grant that

« PreviousContinue »