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for any good; and that we by our sinful life, continually transgress thy holy commandments, whereby we provoke thine anger against us, and according to thy righteous judgment, expose ourselves unto eternal damnation. But, O Lord, we repent and are sorry that we have offended thee, we bewail our transgressions, beseeching that thou wilt graciously pity our misery. Have compassion on us, O most bounteous God and Father, and forgive us all our sins, for that holy passion of thy well beloved son Jesus Christ. Grant us also the grace of thy holy Spirit, that we may with all our hearts study to know our own unrighteousness, and sincerely abhor ourselves; that sin may be mortified in us, and we be raised up to a new life; that we may bring forth genuine fruits of holiness and righteousness, which through Jesus Christ are acceptable to thee. Give us to understand thy holy word according to thy divine will, that we may learn thereby to put our whole trust in thee alone, and withdraw it from all creatures. That also our old man, with all the affections thereof, may be daily more and more crucified, and that we offer up ourselves unto thee a living sacrifice, to the glory of thy holy name, and to the edification of our neighbours; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who hath taught and commanded us to pray: Our Father, &c.
A Prayer after sermon in the week.
God let not thy holy name be profaned for our
sins, for we have divers ways sinned against thee, since we are not obedient to thy holy word, as we ought to be, and through ignorance and murmuring daily stir up thine anger against us: wherefore thou dost justly punish us: but, O Lord, be mindful of thy great mercy, and have compassion on us. Give us knowledge of, and repentance for our sins, and amendment of our lives; strengthen the ministers of thy church, that they may faithfully and stedfastly declare thy holy word; and the magistrates of thy people, that they may bear the sword with equity and prudence; preserve us from all deceit and unfaithfulness; confound all evil, and subtle counsels taken against thy word and church. O Lord, withhold not from us thy Spirit and word, but grant us increase of faith; and in all trouble and adversity, patience and constancy. Assist thy church, deliver her from all affliction, derision, and persecution. Strengthen also the weak and sorrowful of heart, and send us thy peace, through Jesus Christ our Lord, who hath given us this sure promise: verily verily I say unto you, whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it you; and hath commanded us to pray: Our Father, &c.
A morning Prayer.
we thank thee, that thou hast in faithfulness watched over us the night past, and beseech thee to strengthen, and henceforth guide us by thy holy Spirit, that we may
spend this and all the days of our lives in all righteousness and holiness, and that whatsoever we undertake, we may always aim at the pro moting of thy glory, and expect all the success of our undertakings from thy bountiful band alone and to the end that we may obtain this mercy of thee, be pleased (according to thy promise) to forgive all our sins through the holy passion and blood-shedding of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, for we heartily repent of them. Enlighten also our hearts, that we, having cast off all works of darkness, may as children of light walk in a new life in all godliness. Bless also the preaching of thy gospel. Destroy all works of the devil. Strengthen all ministers of the gospel, and magistrates of thy people. Comfort all those who are persecuted and afflicted in mind, through Jesus Christ thy beloved Son, who hath promised us, that thou wilt certainly give us, whatsoever we shall ask in his name, and therefore hath commanded us to pray: Our Father, &c.
An evening Prayer.
MERCIFUL God, eternal light, in darkness, thou who dispellest the night of sin, and all blindness of heart, since thou hast appointed the night for rest, and the day for labour; we beseech thee, grant that our bodies may rest in peace and quietness, that afterward they may be able to endure the labour they must bear. Temper our sleep, that it be not disorderly, that we may remain spotless both in body and soul, nay, that our sleep itself may be to thy glory. Enlighten the eyes of our understanding, that we may not sleep in death; but always look for our deliverance from this misery. Defend us against all assaults of the devil, and take us into thy holy protection. And although we have not passed this day, without having greatly sinned against thee, we beseech thee to hide our sins with thy mercy, as thou hidest all things on earth with the darkness of the night, that we therefore may not be cast out from thy presence. Relieve and comfort all those who are afflicted or distressed in mind, body or estate, through Jesus Christ our Lord, who hath taught us to pray: Our Father, &c.
A Prayer at the opening of the Consistory.
EAVENLY Father, eternal and merciful God, it hath pleased thee of thy infinite wisdom and goodness, to gather a church to thyself out of all nations upon the face of the earth, by the preaching of the holy gospel, and to govern the same by the service of men.Thou hast also graciously called us up to this office, and commanded us to take heed unto ourselves and unto the flock, which Christ hath bought with his precious blood. Since we are at this present assembled in thy holy name, after the example of the apostolic churches, to consult as cur office requires, of those things which may come before us, concerning the welfare and edification of thy churches, for which we ac
knowledge ourselves to be unfit and incapable, as we are by nature unable of ourselves to think any good, much less to put it in practice: therefore we beseech thee, O faithful God and Father, that thou wilt be pleased to be present with thy holy Spirit, according to thy promise, in the midst of our present assembly, to guide us into all truth. Remove from us all misapprehensions and unbecoming desires of the flesh, and grant that thy holy word may be the only rule and guide of all our consultations, that they may tend to the glory of thy name, and to the edification of thy church, and to the discharge of our own consciences, through Jesus Christ thy Son, who with thee and the Holy Ghost, the one only true God, art eternally to be praised and magnified. Amen.
A Prayer at the close of the Consistory.
LORD God and heavenly Father, we heartily thank thee, that thou hast been pleased to gather a church to thyself in this part of the world, and to use our service therein, granting us the priviledge, that we may freely and without hindrance preach thy holy gospel, and exercise all the duties of godliness: moreover we thank thee, that thou now hast been present with thy holy Spirit in the midst of this our assembly, directing our determinations according to thy will, uniting our hearts in mutual peace and concord. We beseech thee, O faithfu God and Father, that thou wilt graciously be pleased to bless our intended labour, and effectually to execute thy begun work: always gathering unto thyself a true church, and preserving the same in the pure doctrine, and in the right use of thy holy sacraments, and in a diligent exercise of discipline. On the contrary, destroy all evil and crafty councils, which are devised against thy word and church. Strengthen also all ministers of thy church, that they may faithfully and stedfastly declare thy holy word: and the magistrates of thy people, that they may bear the sword with righteousness and discretion. Particu. larly we pray for those, whom thou hast been pleased to put in authori ty over us, both those of higher and lower dignity, and especially for the worshipful magistrates of this place. Grant that their whole government may be thus directed, that the King of all kings may rule over them and their fellow-citizens, and that the kingdom of the devil (which is a kingdom of scandal and reproach) may, daily, more and more be destroyed and brought to nought by them as thy servants, and that we may lead under them a quiet and peaceable life, in all godliness and honesty. Hear us, O God and Father, through Jesus Christ thy beloved Son, who with thee and the Holy Ghost, the only and true God, is eternally to be maguified and praised. Amen.
A Prayer at the meeting of the Deacons.
God and Father, thou who hast not only said unto
us, that we should always have the poor with us, but hast also commanded that they should be assisted, and for that end hast ordained
the service of deacons in thy church, by whom they might be relieved: and as we who are called to the office of deacons in this congregation, are here at present met in thy name, to consult together concerning our ministry, therefore we humbly beseech thee for the sake of Jesus Christ, that thou wilt be pleased to endue us with the spirit of discretion, to the end that we may rightly discern who are really poor, and who are not: and that we may with all cheerfulness and fidelity, distribute the alms collected by us to every one according to his necessity, not leaving the indigent members of thy beloved Son comfortless, neither giving to those who are not in want. Kindle within the hearts of men an ardent love towards the poor, that they may liberally give of their temporal goods, of which thou hast made them stewards; and that we having the means in hand to assist the indigent, may faithfully without vexation, and with a free heart, serve our office. Grant us also the talents, not only to comfort the miserable with the external gift, but also with thy holy word. And since man doth not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of thy mouth, be pleased therefore to extend thy blessing over our distributions, and increase the bread of the poor, that both we and they may have reason to praise and thank thee: expecting the blessed coming of thy beloved Son Jesus Christ, who became poor for our sakes to make us rich in eternity. Amen.
Grace before meat.
Psalm cxlv. verse 15, 16.-" The eyes of all wait upon thee, and thou givest them their meat in due season.
Thou openest thine hand, and satisfiest the desire of every living thing."
God, thou who hast created all things, and dost
still maintain and govern them by thy divine power, and didst feed thy people Israel in the wilderness, bless us thy poor servants, and sanctify these thy gifts, which we receive from thy bountiful goodness, that we may temperately and holily use them according to thy will, and thereby acknowledge that thou art our Father, and the fountain of all good. Grant also that we may at all times and above all things seek for that spiritual bread of thy word, with which our souls are fed to life eternal, which thou hast prepared for us by the holy blood of thy be. loved Son Jesus Christ. Amen. Our Father, &c.
Also our Lord Jesus Christ admonishes us :
Luke xxi. 34, 35.-" And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares for as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth.
Grace after meat.
Thus speaketh the Lord in the fifth book of Moses, chap. viii, verse 10, 11.-"When thou hast eaten and art full, then thou shalt bless the
Lord thy God, for the good land which he hath given thee. Beware that thou forget not the Lord thy God, in not keeping his commandments, and his judgments, and his statutes which I commanded thee this day."
LORD God and heavenly Father, we thank thee for all thy benefits, which we without intermission receive from thy bountiful hand; we bless thy divine will, for preserving us in this mortal life, and for supplying all our wants; but especially for our regeneration unto a hope of a better life, which thou hast revealed unto us by thy gospel. We beseech thee, merciful God and Father, not to suffer our hearts to be fixed upon these earthly and corruptible things; but that we may always look up to heaven, expecting thence our Savionr Jesus Christ, until he appear in the clouds for our deliverance. Amen.— Our Father, &c.
A Prayer for sick and tempted Persons..
eternal, righteous God, and merciful Father, thou
who art Lord of life and death, and without whose will nothing is done in heaven or in earth, although we are not worthy to call upon thy name, nor to hope that thou wilt hear us, when we consider how we have hitherto employed our time; we beseech thee, that thou wilt be pleased of thy mercy to look upon us in the face of Jesus Christ, who has taken all our infirmities on him: we acknowledge that we are utterly incapable of any good, and prone to all evil, wherefore we have justly merited this punishment, yea have deserved much more. But Lord, thou knowest that we are thy people, and that thou art our God: we have no other refuge than to thy mercy, which thou never hast withheld from any one who turned himself to thee. Therefore we beseech thee not to impute our sins unto us, but account the wisdom, righteousness and holiness of Jesus Christ to us, that we may in him be able to stand before thee. Deliver us for his sake from these sufferings, that the wicked may not think that thou hast forsaken us. And if it is thy pleasure longer thus to try us, give us strength and patience to bear all such according to thy will, and let it all turn according to thy wisdom to our profit. Rather chastise us here, than hereafter to be lost with the world. Grant that we may die from this world and all earthly things, and that we may daily more and more be renewed after the image of Jesus Christ. Suffer us not to be separated by any means from thy love; but draw us daily nigher and nigher unto thee, that we may enter upon the end of our calling with joy, that is, to die, to rise again, and live with Christ in eternity. We also believe that thou wilt hear us through Jesus Christ, who hath taught us to pray: Our Father, &c.
Strengthen us also in the true faith, which we believe in our hearts, and profess with our mouths: I believe in God, &c.