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· A SHORT FORM OF EVENING PRAYER
FOR A FAMILY.
IN THE NAME OF OUR BLESSED LORD AND SAVIOUR
JESUS. OUR FATHER, &c.
The Hymn. O Lord, our Lord, how excellent is thy name in all the earth, thou hást set thy glory above the heavens !
When I consider the heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained :
What is man that thou art mindful of him, and the son of man, that thou visitest him!
For thou hast made him little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour.
Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands : and hast put all things under his feet ;
All sheep and oxen, yea, and the beasts of the field, the fowl of the air, and the fishes of the sea.
O Lord, our Governor, how excellent is thy name in all the world!
The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament showeth his handywork.
Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto' night showeth knowledge.
Their line is gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world.
To the end that my glory may sing praise to thee, and not be silent: 0 Lord, my God, I will give thanks unto thee for ever.
Show me thy ways, O Lord, teach me thy paths, lead me in thy truth, and teach me; for thou art the God of my sal-' vation, on thee do I wait all the day.
Remember, O Lord, thy tender mercies and thy lovingkindnesses; for they have been ever of old.
Remember not the sins of my youth, nor my transgression : according to thy mercy remember me, for thy goodness' sake, O Lord.
For thy name's sake, O Lord, pardon mine iniquity, for
it is very great: 0 keep my soul and deliver me, let me not be ashamed, for I put my trust in thee.
That which I see not, teach thou me: I have done iniquity, but I will do no more: for there is no darkness, nor shadow of death, where the workers of iniquity may hide themselves.
For his eyes are upon the ways of man, and he seeth all bis goings: but none saith, Where is God my Maker, who giveth songs in the night?
But I put my trust in thee, O Lord; I have said, Thou art my God.
Into thy hand I commend my spirit; thou hast redeemed me, O Lord God of truth.
I will lay me down in peace : for thou, Lord, only makest me dwell in safety.
Glory be to the Father, &c.
Or this. Preserve me, O God, for in thee do I put my trust : 0 my soul, thou hast said unto the Lord, Thou art my Lord : my goodness extendeth not to thee;
But to the saints which are in the earth, and to the excellent, in whom is all my delight.
The Lord is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup: thou maintainest my lot.
I will bless the Lord, who hath given me counsel : my reins also instruct me in the night-seasons.
I have set the Lord always before me : because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved. Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth : my flesh also shall rest in hope.
For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell: neither wilt thou suffer thy holy one to see corruption.
Thou wilt show me the path of life; in thy presence is the fulness of joy: at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.
As the hart panteth after the water-brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God.
My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God: when shall I come and appear in the presence of God ?
The Lord will command his loving-kindness in the day
time, and in the night his song shall be with me; I will make my prayer unto the God of my life. For thou art the God that doest wonders ; thy way,
O God, is in the sanctuary : who is so great a God as our God?
Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence.
Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night: nor for the arrow that flieth by day.
For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways; they shall bear thee in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.
I will remember thee upon my bed, and meditate on thee in the night-watch; for thou hast been my health, therefore in the shadow of thy wings will I rejoice.
Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits, even the God of our salvation.
He that is our God, is the God of salvation : and unto God the Lord belong the issues of death.
Also unto thee, O Lord, belongeth mercy: for thou renderest to every man according to his work.
Glory be to the Father, &c.
1 Thess. v. 2. Yourselves know perfectly, that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. For when they shall say,
peace and safety,' then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child : and they shall not escape. But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. Ye all are children of the light and children of the day: we are not of the night or of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep as do others; but let us watch and be sober. For they that sleep, sleep in the night; and they that be drunken, are drunken in the night. But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breast-plate of faith and love, and for an helmet the hope of salvation. For God hath not appointed us to wrath; but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ: who died for us, that whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him.
Or read a chapter in the Sapiential books in order.
After the Lesson recite the Creed.
The Lord be with you.
Let us pray.
The Confession of Sins, taken out of the Prayer of
St. Ephraim, the Syrian. O Almighty God, who dwellest in the inaccessible light, before whom the greatest mountains are like the dust of the balance, and in whose sight the heavens are not pure, and the angels tremble, and the saints are charged with folly, and all the world shall fear in thy glorious presence; we confess to thee, O Lord, Father of heaven and earth, all those sins which we have wrought in private and in public; for thou knowest all things, and nothing is hid from thy righteous eyes. Thou art the God of mercy and pity, and thou wouldst have all, even strangers, to be saved; we fly therefore unto thee, who art the Lover and Saviour of all the souls of the faithful. Have pity upon us, who have many times embittered and grieved thy most Holy Spirit, to the joy of our enemies, and the sad ruin of our pitiable and wounded souls. Behold, O God, we have been dead in sins and trespasses, and servants to thy enemy. There is no kind of sins but we have committed, or would have committed ; if it were pleasant, we cared not for the foulness, but if we were tempted we did fall; and where we did fall, there we did love to lie;' we have sinned worse than the adultéress or the thief, more than the publican or the prodigal, oftener than David or Manasses : we have sinned against greater mercies, a more determined conscience, a better law, a clearer revelation, more terrible threatenings, and better, much better promises.
We know, O God, and tremble at the sad remembrance, that all our sins shall be placed before our faces at the day of thy dreadful appearance; O look upon us with a mighty pity, let not the angel of wrath snatch our precious
souls from thy beatific presence; take not the sweet refreshments of thy Spirit from us one hour. O dearest Lord, thou Lover of souls, take not our lives from us,
while our souls are unprepared and unready, unexcused and unpardoned; for thou knowest the abyss of our sins, and thou knowest what is that abyss of flames and anger, which is prepared for foolish and unwary souls.
III. Most blessed Saviour Jesus, thou gavest thy life to redeem us from death; and thou art the Judge of those actions, for which thou wert a sacrifice; and to give sentence upon those men, for whom thou art an advocate, and makest perpetual intercession: O suffer us not to fall under thine eternal anger; destroy the whole body of sin in.
us'; bring our understandings into the obedience of God; our affections under the dominion of reason, our reason into a perfect subordination to thy Holy Spirit; that we may love thee and fear thee, and, by repentance and charity, may enter into thy favour, and dwell there by a holy perseverance all our days; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
The Prayers. Do thou open our eyes, that we may see our own vilepesses, and forsake them; and our foolish errors, that we may amend them; and all our infirmities, that we may watch against them; and all our duty, that we may pursue it earnestly and passionately, prudently and entirely, presently and for ever. Cause us to return to our duty with greater fervor and devotion than ever we have sinned against thee with pleasure and delight; and as we have dishonoured thee by our unworthiness, so grant that we may glorify thee ten times more, weeping bitterly for our sins, watching against them strictly, hating them infinitely, and forsaking them utterly. O grant that we may every day renew our repentances and vows of a better life, and make us to do every day what we promise, and what is our duty; so imprinting a holy religion and a severe repentance in our spirits, that we may confess our sins with a real and humble sorrow, and beg for pardon, because we desire it, and ask for thy help, because we will make use of it, and number our sins, because we will