SABBATH MORNING. Bickersteth.
O Almighty God, Creator, Governor, and Upholder
of all things, who, after making the heaven and earth,
rest on the seventh day, and bless and sanctify it, teach us now, resting from our worldly labours, to devote the day to thy service. O thou, whose Son did, as on this day, rise again from the dead, grant us grace to rise from the death of sin to the life of righteousness. Help us now, in his name, to seek thy blessing on those holy duties to which the Sabbath is set apart.
We bless and praise thee for the appointment of this day, and for all the means of grace which we enjoy in this highly favoured land. We bless thee that thy house is open, that thy ministers have liberty to preach, and we have opportunity, and inclination to assemble with thy people and hear thy holy word.
Above all, we thank thee for the knowledge of Jesus Christ; for free justification and salvation through his life, death, and resurrection. We praise thee for the gift of thy Holy Spirit. Blessed, for ever blessed, be thou, the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, for all these thy benefits.
Great have been thy mercies to us; but with shame we confess that we have slighted thy goodness, and carelessly regarded thy great salvation. How many Sabbaths have we broken; how many invitations of mercy have we neglected; how many warnings and threatenings have we trifled with! How cold have been our prayers; how great our irreverence; how inexcusable our unbelief!
Forgive us, O forgive us, all our negligences, and infirmities, and all our sins and iniquities. To the Lord our God belong mercies and forgivenesses, though we have rebelled against him. Return again and bless us. Graciously be present with us, through all the solemn services of this day. Enable us to go to thy house in the spirit of prayer. Pour out upon us, and all that shall meet in thy name, the spirit of grace and supplication. Let none of us draw near to thee with our lips only, while our hearts are far from thee; but enable us to worship thee in spirit and in truth. Cause thy face to shine upon us. Grant that we may find that the Lord is in his holy temple, and be able to say, It was good for us to have been there! Prepare our hearts to receive thy holy word, that it may be sown in good ground, and bring much fruit to perfection.
Bless especially all such as hope this day again to receive the memorials of our Saviour's sufferings and death. May contrition, penitence, faith, humility, and love, be in lively exercise, and be greatly increased.
Help all of us, not only to abstain from engaging in our usual business and occupation, but also keep us from worldly conversation, and from vain thoughts. Raise our affections to things above, and let our conversation be in heaven. Enable us to give this day to reading and hearing thy word, to meditation, self-examination, and prayer; and be thou with us to bless us in our retired devotions.
And, Father of mercies, we beseech thee to bless all that minister in holy things. Multiply unto them thy grace, that they may be faithful, diligent, and laborious. Grant them humility, disinterestedness, watchfulness, and zeal; may all have grace to take heed to themselves, and to the flock over which the Holy Ghost has made them overseers, feeding the church of God which he has purchased with his own blood. Stand by and strengthen them this day. Open thou their mouths, and enable them to testify boldly the gospel of the grace of God. We especially pray for him who ministers among us. May he this day be enabled to speak a word in season to us, and to all that hear him.
And, we beseech thee, grant that this thy Sabbath may be distinguished by great and singular mercies to thy church. Be thou with all Christian congregations meeting to worship thee. By the ministry of thy word this day, convert many sinners; heal those that have backslidden, strengthen those that are weak, and confirm those that are strong. Give thy holy word free course, and let it be glorified in every land, and among every people. Hear us, and answer us, for our Lord Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.
Our Father, Sec.
SABBATH EVENING. Bkkersteth.
Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and art to come! Thou art of purer eyes than to behold iniquity; thou chargest thine angels with folly, and in thy sight the heavens are not clean; we approach thee, then, only in the name of Jesus Christ.
We confess, O Lord, how defective and defiled all our services are. We acknowledge that our prayers are full of distractions. Our very petitions need thy pardon, our cold intercessions for others increase our own guilt, and our unworthy thanksgivings fall utterly short of thy great goodness to us. We carelessly and unbelievingly hear thy word. All we do is polluted and sinful. O forgive us. Forgive the sins of solemn duties; and let that great High Priest, who is passed into the heavens, bearing the iniquities of our holy things, plead for us in thy sight.
And grant, most merciful Lord, that it may not be in vain that we enjoy such distinguished privileges as thou hast given to us, lest it be more tolerable for Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment than for us. Let not the seed of the word of God which has this day been sown in our hearts, be plucked away by Satan, lost through temptation, or choked with the cares of this life; but having heard it and received it, incline us to keep it, and do thou cause it to bring forth fruit, an hundred fold.
Grant that our lives may exhibit whose we are, and whom we serve: remembering that if we know our Lord's will, and do it not, we shall justly have the severer punishment. We humbly beseech thee, strengthen our resolutions to live more decidedly to thee. We feel that we now have again to enter into the contest with our spiritual enemies; make us more than conquerors through him that loved us. We have again to exert ourselves to run the race set before us; teach us ever to look unto Jesus as the author and finisher of our faith. O let us take the more earnest heed never to let slip the things which we have heard.
And we pray for all those who have this day assembled before thee, and heard the word of salvation. Grant unto them the same mercies which we ask for ourselves. Let thy ministers, that water others, be themselves abundantly watered in their own soul. Strengthen them for thy work, both in body and soul.
Remember, in mercy, those who by thy providence have been kept from thy house, and let them receive a special supply of thy grace. Grant that those who have wilfully or ignorantly deprived themselves of public worship, may have their eyes opened to see, and their hearts awakened to feel, their guilt and their danger, and learn to flee from the wrath to come. O hasten the time when thy house shall be a house of prayer for all nations, and the whole world shall worship in thy courts.
Thanks be unto God for all the privileges of the past Sabbath. Blessed be thy name that we were permitted to hear thy word, to join thy people in prayer and praise, and to enjoy so plentifully the means of grace. Blessed be our God for any thing of communion with him, or desire after him. Blessed be God, if the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, or his holy word, be more understood or valued by us. Our cup runneth over with mercies.
O Lord, if, amid our infirmities, thy Sabbaths here below rejoice the heart; if to rest from earthly labours, and enjoy the privileges of thy house in this world be delightful; how should we thank thee for the prospect of an eternal Sabbath, where thy servants shall serve thee without one wandering thought, without weariness, and without distraction! O grant, in mercy grant, that none of those who have this day met together in thy house, may be wanting in the number of those who shall dwell in that house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens, for Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.
Our Father, &c.
MONDAY MORNING. Bickersteth.
Almighty God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, who hast said that thou wilt be the God of all the families of Israel, and they shall be thy people; dispose our hearts, by the gracious influence of thy Holy Spirit, to worship thee through one Mediator, Jesus Christ our Lord.
Thou art God, and there is none beside thee: the Creator of heaven and earth, the Lord of glory, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, long suffering, abundant in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity, and transgressions, and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty. We bow and worship at thy footstool; we acknowledge thee to be the Lord.
Accept, through thy Son Jesus Christ, our Lord, our unfeigned thanksgivings for the mercies of another day. Thou gavest us our being, and thou preservest us from day to day. Through the defenceless hours of the night thou hast kept us in safety. Thou hast given us a soul capable of knowing and rejoicing in thee, and a body by which we may serve thee.
We bless thee for the seeing eye, and the hearing ear, for the free use of our limbs and our senses, for the power of the mind, and the affections of the heart.
But, O Lord, we thank thee most of all for thy spiritual blessings. We bless thee that we were not born in heathen lands, but in this favoured country, where the light of thy truth clearly shines. We thank thee for the comfort of the Holy Scriptures, for the labours of faithful ministers, and for all the means of grace. O how great has been thy love to us! Thou sparedst not thine own Son, but deliveredst him up for us all, and with him thou hast freely given us all things.
What reward shall we render unto the Lord for all his benefits? We desire now afresh to devote ourselves to thy service. We give up ourselves, our whole selves unto thee. God of peace, sanctify us wholly: God of our life, grant that our whole spirit, and soul, and body, may be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
But with shame and confusion of face, we would confess that we have been rebellious and disobedient. Thou art holy, but we are unholy. Thou art merciful, but we have often been selfish and unkind. Thou art pure but we are impure. Thou art patient, but we are impatient. We have abused all thy gifts, and made them occasions of sin. Lord, we acknowledge our impenitence, we confess our unbelief, we bewail our selfrighteousness.
Forgive us all our offences, remember not against us our transgressions, but remember thy great and tender mercies which have been ever of old. Grant unto every one of us a saving interest in the death of Christ, full and free forgiveness of all our sins, and grace and strength to go and sin no more. Lord, help us to love thee, teach us to serve thee. Give us thy strength that we may overcome our corrupt nature. Grant that this day we may have power from on high to resist every temptation, to confess Christ before men, to labour steadfastly with a single eye to thy glory, to live in the spirit of prayer, in faith, humility, self-denial, and love, and to walk before thee in that narrow way which leads to eternal life. Fill us with love to others. Teach us to do good to all men, [and to seek according to our means to visit and relieve the fatherless and the widows in their affliction,] and do thou keep us unspotted from the world.
Lord, for thy name's sake, hear us. We beseech thee, according to thy infinite mercy, give us grace to serve thee, constantly and unfeignedly. Herein art thou glorified, that we bear much fruit. For thine own glory, grant us thy Spirit, that we may bring forth all the fruits of righteousness.
And hear us farther in behalf of our relations and friends, our neighbourhood, our minister, and all for whom we ought to pray. Help those that are weak. Comfort those that are cast down. Heal those that are sick. Relieve those that are in distress. Be merciful unto thy church. O bless us, and cause thy face to shine upon us, that thy way may be known upon earth, thy saving health among all nations. Bring the Gentiles to Christ. Gather thy people Israel into thy fold. Give wisdom and power to every effort of Christian love for spreading thy gospel. Bless all societies formed for this end, and let those who support and conduct them, have thy direction and guidance. Lord, grant that the power of the cross of Christ, may at length fully triumph over all error and superstition, all idolatry, and delusion, and sin.
Gracious Lord, not for our worthiness, but for the only name's sake of Jesus Christ, hear these our prayers, which we sum up in his own words.
Our Father, Sec,
MONDAY EVENING. JBickersteth.
O Eternal God, whose name is love, and who so loved the world that thou gavest thine only-begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish but have everlasting life, help us, by the Holy Spirit, to believe in Christ Jesus; and trusting in him to have access unto thee.
We feel our need of a Saviour for sinners; for we all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God. When we look back even on the past day, thy law accuses us of many sins, and our own consciences justly condemn us. We have been forgetful of thy presence; our conversation has been light and trifling; and we have not with a single eye sought thy glory, or copied the holy life of our Saviour Christ. He left us a perfect example, but how seldom we tread in his steps: how little we have of his meekness and lowliness of heart, of his zeal and love! We have sinned, notwithstanding the light of thy word, and the checks of our own consciences.
Grant us thy grace that we may not be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. Give us true repentance, and such a sense of our sinfulness as may lead us to despair of salvation by any works of our own; and bring us humbled and penitent to the foot of the cross. .Help us by faith to behold the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world. Teach us to renounce our own righteousness, and to depend wholly on Jesus Christ: may we be able to say and feel, "In the Lord have I righteousness and strength."
Teach us to come to Jesus Christ, and now to look to him, not only for pardon and peace, but also for grace and strength. We are weak, but Jesus is strong: grant that we may be made strong in and through him. Draw us to Christ, that we may receive out of his fulness all that we need, repentance, remission of sins, and the gift of thy Holy Spirit; that he may dwell in our hearts by faith, and we be rooted and grounded in love.
We commend ourselves to thy care during the night. Let no evil come nigh us. May our last thoughts be with thee; and when we awake, may we be still with thee. Refresh our bodies with the quiet repose of the night, and renew our spiritual strength. Teach us ever to watch and pray, and to be always ready, seeing we know neither the day nor the hour when the Son of Man shall come.
Extend thy merciful care to all that are near and dear to us. We pray for all our relatives. May those that are endeared to us by the ties of nature, be yet more dear by the stronger bonds of grace. Grant that we may be all one in Christ Jesus our Lord. We pray for our Christian friends, for our neighbours, and all with whom we have intercourse.
Bless those that minister before the Lord. May they be faithful, wise, humble, and devoted servants of the Lord Jesus Christ. Every where raise up pastors according to thine heart, which shall feed thy people with knowledge and understanding. Grant thy blessing to every missionary now preaching Christ to the Gentiles. Cause Jew and Gentile, to turn to the Lord, that they may be saved. Bring on the happy day, when there shall be one fold and one Shepherd; and they shall not hurl, nor destroy in all thy holy mountain.
O thou Giver of every good and perfect gift, we praise and bless thee for thy great and continued mercies to us. All things thou givest to us richly for enjoyment. We receive from thee full provision for all our temporal wants, and thou forgivest our iniquities.
Like as a father pitieth his children, so thou our Lord and Father pitiest them that fear thee. Thou knowest our frame; thou rememberest that we are dust. - Thou hast had compassion on us in our low and lost estate, and thou gavest thy Son to die for us; and now thou offerest and givest us thy Holy Spirit, to soften our hard hearts and to help our infirmities. Thou justifiest us freely by thy grace, adoptest us into thy family, and givest us a hope full of glory.
Behold what manner of love thou our Father hast bestowed upon us that we should be called the sons of God! God of mercy, grant, only grant, that we may be followers of thee as dear children, and show forth thy praise, not only with our lips, but in our lives, through Jesus Christ.
And now blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto Him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb, for ever and ever. Amen.
Our Father, &c.
The Lord bless us, and keep us.
The Lord make his face to shine upon us, and be gracious unto us.
The Lord lift up his countenance upon us, and give us peace.
TUESDAY MORNING. Bickersteth.
Almighty God, source of every good, and fountain of every blessing, the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, and in him our God and Father, give us the Spirit of adoption, and enable us to cry, Abba, Father. Help us to come and pour out our hearts before thee with the same confidence and affection with which children go to an earthly parent. Enable us to repose on thy love, to tell thee all our desires, and all our sorrows; and from the heart, to thank thee for all thy goodness to us.
Great and abundant cause we have to bless our God for all that he is in himself, and for all that he is to us. Thy mercies are new every morning. We thank thee that we meet together in peace and safety. Thou hast been our defence and our refuge. Let then the outgoings of the morning and of the evening praise thee.
We thank thee more especially for all the mercies of redemption. In the gospel of Christ, mercy and truth meet together, and righteousness and peace kiss each other. Thus can even we rejoice in thy power and justice, thy holiness, mercy, and love; and bless thee that the light of the knowledge of this thy glory shines, in the hearts of thy people in the face of Jesus Christ. Blessed be thou the just God and the Saviour.
O how unworthy we are of the least of thy mercies! We are all sinful and guilty. We have turned every one to his own way. We would give thee glory by an ingenuous and free confession that in many things we have all offended thee. From our youth up, even till now, we have been great sinners.
We dare not justify ourselves in thy sight, for if we
should attempt it, even our own mouths would condemn us. We have omitted to perform many plain duties. We have done many things for which our consciences justly accuse us. All our righteousnesses are defiled. All our prayers and services are polluted.
Yet spare us, good Lord, spare us, according to thy great compassion and thy tender mercy. Lord God of our salvation, it is thy gracious promise on which our souls rely, that if we confess our sins thou art faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. We now confess our sins, and we ask that they may be forgiven, and that our souls may be purified from sin. We plead for thy mercy, for Jesus bore our sins in his own body on the tree. We plead thy faithfulness according to thy many precious promises.
Cleanse, we beseech thee, the thoughts of our hearts, by the influence of thy Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love thee, and worthily magnify thy holy name. Strengthen us for the duties of this day. Suffer us not to be tempted above what we are able to bear; but with every temptation, make a way to escape. Incline and enable us to walk in that way.
Hold thou up our goiugs in thy paths that our footsteps slip not. Set a watch before our mouths, and keep the door of our lips, that we offend not with our tongue. May we always speak that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace to the hearers. Enable us also to keep our heart with all diligence, seeing that out of it are the issues of life. Increase our faith, enliven our hope, and enlarge our charity, that we may faithfully serve thee, and in all things glorify thy holy name.
We pray for all our relatives and friends. Give them prosperity both of body and soul.t Grant that grace
t When any member of the family is sick, add— We particularly commend unto thee that member of our family now in affliction; may faith, patience, submission, and resignation be granted in this hour of trial, and in thy own good time remove the affliction. And, Lord, grant that all our tribulations here below may lead us to look at the things which are above, and work out for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory. Ever give us a spirit of sympathy, and tender feeling, and love far and peace may be multiplied to all these that call on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, their Lord and ours. Seek and save the lost sheep of the house of Israel. Let the light of life shine into every benighted heart. Increase especially among the people of this nation, the number of those who know, and love, and serve thee. Bless our rulers, and guide our statesmen; teach thy ministers and prosper thy people, that there may be no complaining in our streets; and that it may be said of us, "Happy is the people that is in such a case; yea, happy is that people whose God is the Lord."
These prayers we offer up in the name and through the mediation of thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord.
Our Father, &c.
TUESDAY EVENING. Bickersteth.
O Thou, who art the God of all the families of the earth, who didst favourably notice Abraham's commanding his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord; be thou present with us now, and enable us by thy Holy Spirit, and through thy Son's intercession, to worship thee in spirit and in truth.
We come before thee acknowledging that we were all born in sin, the children of wrath, and have in common a corrupt nature and a continual propensity to depart from thee. And O how often have we offended thee, the God of all the earth, by actual transgressions.
Even in the day that is past, by vain thoughts, by idle words, by sinful indulgencies, we have grieved thy Spirit, and we have incurred thy displeasure. Our only refuge is in thy promised mercy in Christ Jesus. We cast ourselves wholly on that mercy. Fixing all our
each other; and may we always be ready to weep with those that weep and rejoice with those that rejoice.
When any member of the family is on a journey, add— O Lord, we beseech thee, regard with thy favour, protect and defend him who is now absent from us. Take him under thy special care. Preserve him from every temptation. Prosper him in his undertakings. May he be a blessing every where he goes; and bring him in health and peace among us again, that we may together have fresh cause to praise and bless thy holy name.
hopes on our Saviour Jesus, we confess our guilt, and earnestly pray that his blood may cleanse us from all sin.
And give us, we beseech thee, the comfortable assurance that our sins are forgjiven. Let thy Holy Spirit bear witness with our spirits that we are children of God. Plentifully impart to us the gift of thy Spirit, that we may bring forth love, joy, peace, gentleness, goodness, meekness, long-suffering, forbearance, and temperance. Grant that we may so copy the example of our Saviour, as to be the Epistles of Christ, known and read of all men; and have clear evidence of our own salvation. Teach us so to live, that we may glorify thee who hast bought us with a price of such amazing value as the blood of thine own Son.
O that all now kneeling together may indeed obtain mercy in Christ Jesus, may pass from death unto life, and love and serve thee unfeignedly. But, O Lord, how cold is our love to thee! how dead, how dull are our hearts! Help us to love thee; to love God with all our heart, with all our mind, with all our soul, and with all our strength. Shed abroad the love of God in our hearts, by giving us the Holy Ghost; and may we be taught of God to love one another. Be thou present with us in our more retired devotions; praying to our Father which is in secret in our closet, may we find his presence and blessing there.
Bless, O Lord, all that are near and dear to us. Many beloved relatives and friends are now absent from us; but thou art with them, and all their wants are known to thee. Give them thy grace; ever guide them here by thy counsel, and may none of them be wanting in thy heavenly kingdom.
We pray for all in authority; Lord, may their counsels be ordered by thee as may be most for the good of our country.
Give, we beseech thee, to all ministers of Jesus Christ every where, true knowledge and understanding of thy word; and may they set it forth in their lives accordingly. Make them wise to win souls. Lord, call forth and send out many faithful labourers to the work of the ministry. May the distant isles wait on thee, and the Gentiles come to thy light. Bless every society established for benefiting the bodies or the souls of men. and especially those in which we are more immediately engaged and interested.
Thanks be unto thee, Holy Lord God, for all thy goodness towards us. How multiplied are thy mercies everyday! How excellent is thy loving kindness! We bless thee for all thy long suffering and forbearance towards us. We bless thee for the infinite mercies of redeeming love. We bless thee for the knowledge of thy salvation, and for the light of thy truth; for protection from every danger during the night, and provision for all our wants by day. Thou hast spread our table with food, and thou givest us every needful good. Accept these our prayers and our praises, which we offer up in and through Jesus Christ, our only Mediator and Advocate. Amen.
Our Father, &c.
WEDNESDAY MORNING. Bkkersteth.
O Lord God Almighty, the Creator of heaven and earth, the Lord of glory, who art greatly to be feared in the assembly of thy saints, and to be had in reverence of all them that are round about thee; who dwellest in heaven, surrounded with angels and archangels, with cherubim and seraphim, who veil their faces while they praise and worship; we bow down before thee in the name of Jesus Christ. None other name, but the name of Jesus; none other merits, but the merits of Jesus, would we plead in thy sight: but by him, through one Spirit, may we now have access with confidence to the throne of grace.
O Thou whose name is holy, who hast required that we confess our faults one to another; we would now confess our many and our great sins. We have often sinned against thee, and against each other, in thought, word, and deed. O forgive our hardness of heart, and our earthly mindedness; all our want of charity, all our hastiness of spirit, all our bad tempers, and every sinful action.
For thine own name's sake blot out our transgressions, and remember not our sins.
Lord of all grace, help us ever hereafter to walk worthy of the vocation wherewith we are called. May We, with all lowliness, and meekness, with long-suffering, forbearing one another in love, endeavour to keep the unity of the spirit in the bond of peace. Give us grace so to live, that we may find more and more how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity.
Give unto each of us grace to fulfil our duties toward each other. As parents, may we bring up our children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, and as children, obey our parents in all things.
We ask for blessings on our native land. Lord, we would sigh before thee for all the abominations of our country. O how the swearer, the Sabbath-breaker, the covetous, the licentious, and the blasphemer, abound on every side! Because of these things the wrath of God comes on the children of disobedience. Spare us, good Lord, spare us, for thy name's sake. Grant, we beseech thee, that as we have been peculiarly distinguished by thy mercies, so it may have to be said of us, "Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people, for what nation is there so great, who hath God so nigh unto them, as the Lord our God is in all things that we call upon him for."
Pour out of thy Spirit on all who have the direction of public affairs; on all who minister in holy things; on the magistrates, and on the people; that a general revival of religion may appear among us. Cause thy church every where to flourish and increase. We pray especially for an increase of the zeal, purity and love, humility and devotion of thy people. Let Zion break forth on the right hand and on the left. Add daily to thy church, in our own country, and in heathen lands, such as shall be saved. Bless every missionary gone forth to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, and may more and more grace be given unto them all, that they may labour zealously, wisely, and abundantly in thy cause.
And now, Lord, accept our unfeigned thanksgivings, for all those blessings which we daily so richly enjoy, and especially for the kind protection of another night. We thank thee more especially for those many dear ties of relationship, affection, and Christian principles,
which bind us together. We bless thee for all that sympathy of feeling and union of heart which thou hast given us; and we pray that we may be more and more knit together in Christian love.
But, beyond all other mercies, we bless thee for the common salvation of Jesus Christ; for his birth, his life, his death, and his resurrection; for all that he was, and is, and will be. Blessed be God for the gift of his Son Jesus Christ, our only Saviour, our only hope, and our sure refuge.
We trust that we may say we are one in Christ, members of that body of which he is the head; and we bless and praise thee for this thy unspeakable mercy. We thank thee for this opportunity of assembling ourselves together, to pay our morning sacrifice; and we pray that however we may be separated here below, or however scattered in different stations; as we have now met together here on earth, we may hereafter all meet in heaven, for Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.
Our Father, &c.
WEDNESDAY EVENING. Bickersteth.
Gracious and merciful God, slow to anger, great in power, and rich in mercy to all them that call upon thee, help us now so, in the name of Christ, to ask, that we may have; and so to seek that we may find.
Enter not into judgment with us, O Lord, for in thy sight we cannot be justified. However unblameable we may appear before men, before Him who knows the heart we confess and would mourn over innumerable sins in the past day, and in every day of our life.
We acknowledge with shame and sorrow our hypocrisy and pride, our vanity and selfishness, our unbelief and impatience, our self-indulgence and self-righteousness, our obstinacy and self-will, our disregard of thy law and thy glory, our living to ourselves and not to thee. And, O how hard is our heart, that feels so little the guilt and the evil of so many and such great sins!
Lord of all power and might, soften and break these hard hearts. Give us a contrite spirit. There is mercy with thee. There is forgiveness with thee. O may thy great mercy be displayed towards us, in pardoning all our sins, and in renewing our souls. Give us penitence, faith, and self-denial. Bestow on us the graces of sincerity, humility, and love.
May the love of Christ be more known and felt by us, and let it constrain us to live not to ourselves, but to him that died for us. Grant us thy Holy Spirit, teaching those things of which we are ignorant, taking of the things of Christ to show them unto us, and daily sanctifying our hearts.
We ask for heavenly wisdom, holy simplicity, ardent zeal, and purity of heart. Incline us to study to be quiet, and to do our own business, and to work with our own hands. Prepare us, day by day, more and more, for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Make us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light.
We commend ourselves to thy care during the night. May we lie down at peace with thee, through Christ, and in peace with all the world.
O Lord, though we be unworthy through our manifold transgressions to approach thee at all, yet thou hast commanded that intercessions be made for all men; hear us, therefore, unworthy though we be, in behalf of all that need our prayers. May the Lord comfort his people, and have mercy upon his afflicted. Let all nations whom thou hast made come and worship before thee, and glorify thy name. Let every obstacle which may hinder the progress of thy truth be removed in mercy. Bless all the members of the church of Christ, and all his ministers, and especially those with whom we are more intimately connected.
Give to our parents, our brothers, our sisters, and our relatives, all those temporal and spiritual blessings of which they stand in need. Bless our superiors, our companions, and all about us. Continue the blessing of peace to our country. Pardon any who may have injured us; and if we have injured any, may we be ready to confess our fault, and to make restitution for any wrong done, and may they be disposed to forgive us.
We would not, O thou gracious Giver of every good, close our evening prayer, without offering up, through Christ Jesus, our sincerest thanksgiving for all the mercies of the past day. For any help vouchsafed in our duties; for any stand which we may have been enabled to make against sin, Satan, and the world; for any measure of light, knowledge, or grace, given unto us, all praise, all glory be to thee. If we are still kept in thy way, and yet spared from that ruin which we have deserved, while we live, let us praise and bless thee.
How great is the sum of thy mercies! When we look back on thy past blessings, when we read thy promises relating to that which is to come, and when we look around us on every side, and especially when we regard that cross on which thy Son died for sinners, we would say from the heart, Our mouths shall speak the praise of the Lord, and let all flesh bless his holy name for ever.
Hear us, for the only sake of Jesus Christ.
Our Father, &c.
THURSDAY MORNING. Bickersteth.
Merciful God, give ear unto us, when we cry to thee, in the name of Jesus Christ. Our voices shalt thou hear in the morning, O Lord; in the morning will we direct our prayer unto thee, and will lookup. Lord help us to pray.
Great is the need that we have to seek the Lord while he may be found, and to call upon him while he is near. We know that in us, that is, in our flesh, there dwelleth no good thing. The things of the world, the lust of the eye, and the lust of the flesh, and the pride of life, are continually tempting us, and leading us astray from thee. Our affections towards thee, our God, are cold and dull. Our tempers are often unsanctified. We are prone to depart from thee, and lukewarm and indifferent when we ought to have a holy zeal. We too much neglect and trifle with our own salvation, and the salvation of our relatives and friends. We have little of that spiritual mind which is life and peace. Our temptations are many, we often yield to them; we have no strength of our own to resist them.
We beseech thee, therefore, O our God, to be very merciful to us sinners. Incline and enable us to come to Jesus Christ, weary and heavy laden as we are, and may we find rest in him. Teach us our own guilt and ruin; and help us to rely on his blood, and build all our hopes on his righteousness. God grant that, being grafted in Christ, we may live to him. Suffer us not to deceive ourselves by a mere form and profession of religion; but give us true faith that we may really abide in Christ and bear much fruit. Quicken thou our souls. Make our. hearts pure, humble, and devout; and our conversation holy and heavenly. Thou art our Rock, and in thee do we trust. Thou art our Strength, O establish us. Help us to live near to thee all the day long; and do thou preserve us from that sin which does so easily beset us.
Give us grace this day to overcome temptation, and to mortify all our corrupt affections. Grant unto us the abundance of thy Holy Spirit. Lord, we deserve not the blessing; we have forfeited the mercy: but, O Thou, with whom is the residue of the Spirit, for the glory of thy name, and according to thy faithful promise, give us thy Spirit, that we may never dishonour thee by inconsistency and unfruitfulness, but abound in every good work, and walk worthy of the gospel of Christ. Enable us to begin anew this day, in seriousness and entire dedication of heart to give ourselves to thee.
Lord, help us this day to live in prayer, to watch against the peculiar temptations of our station, to embrace every opportunity of doing good, to redeem the time, and to make steady advances in that narrow way which leadeth to eternal life.
And while we pray to thee for those mercies which we need, we would from the heart, thank thee for all those great blessings which we have received, and do from day to day enjoy. The benefit of quiet repose, the renewal of our strength, the light which we enjoy, and the better light of life; these, and all the mercies which surround us on awaking, call for our unfeigned thanksgiving, and we do praise and bless thee for them. Blessed be thou for redeeming mercy. Blessed be thou that Jesus died for sinners, even for us. Thanks be unto thee that grace, pardon, peace, strength, the Holy Spirit, and eternal life, are given to sinners, through faith in Christ. Unto Him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, and hath made us to be kings and priests unto God, and his Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever.
O Lord God, let the bright glory and happy dominion of our Lord Jesus Christ be spread through the world. Increase both the number and the zeal of those seeking the good of Zion, and the enlargement of thy Son's kingdom. Grant thy blessing to every effort to make the unsearchable riches of Christ known to the Gentiles. Give unto thy people Israel the new heart and the new spirit. Bless our favoured country, so that it may be a highly honoured instrument in diffusing the light of truth abroad; and grant that every exertion for that end may be a means of reviving true religion in all our hearts at home. Bless all in authority. Let thy priests be clothed with righteousness, and thy people sing for joy. May peace and mercy be granted to all our relatives, and rest on our own souls, and in our own family. May we, and all thy people, be united in one heart and mind in thy service and love, praying for each other, bearing one another's burdens, and so fulfilling the law of Christ. Hear us for his name's sake.
Our Father, &c.
THURSDAY EVENING. Bickersteth.
Almighty God, Father of mercies, and God of all comfort, according to thy gracious promise, give us thy Holy Spirit to help our infirmities, and enable us, in the name, and through the mediation of thy Son Jesus Christ, our Lord, to call upon thee.
Great is thy goodness to us sinners, in that we, who have grievously offended thee, have such a Mediator, who ever liveth to make intercession for us. Without a Saviour we can have no hope; for we have sinned against thee, and done evil in thy sight day by day.
We confess and mourn before thee the manifold sins of the past day. We daily offend thee by pride, impenitence, hardness of heart, unbelief, and forgetfulness of thee, and in many other ways: leaving undone the things which we ought to have done, and doing those things which we ought not.
Lord, let thy Holy Spirit convince us of our sinfulness. We pray that we may see more of the extent of our iniquities, and feel more of their guilt. Thus may we be led to hate sin, and to feel the need and value of that Saviour who came to seek and to save that which was lost. Grant that we may be partakers of his great salvation. Whatever else we lose may we win Christ and be found in him.
Lord, we are unclean; if thou wilt thou canst make us clean. We believe that thou art able, we believe that thou art willing. Lord, help our unbelief; Lord, make us clean.
Give us, we beseech thee, such a sense of thy mercy in free forgiveness, through the blood of Christ, that we may be constrained to present our bodies a living sacrifice unto thee. Enable us daily to crucify the lusts of the flesh. Give us such a measure of thy grace, that all the powers of our minds, all the affections of our hearts, and all the talents entrusted to us, may be unreservedly engaged for thee. Lord, incline us to spend ourselves and be spent for thee; strengthen our desire to do so, and enable us ever hereafter to bring this desire to good effect.
Let the number of thy willing and devoted servants be every where increased. Be thou exalted, O God, above the heavens, and thy glory above all the earth. Pour out thy Spirit upon all flesh, that all the ends of the earth may remember and turn unto the Lord, and all the kindreds of the nations may worship before thee. Let thy great name, now so little known, and so much profaned, be magnified and sanctified in every country and by every tongue.
Bless the land in which we dwell; its government, the ministers of Jesus Christ, and all its people. May we be a people fearing God and working righteousness. Look with thine especial favour on our relatives and friends, our family connexions and acquaintance. May they all be partakers of the grace of Christ here, and of his glory hereafter.
We will bless the Lord at all times, his praise shall continually be in our mouths. Bless the Lord, O our souls, and forget not all his benefits. How great and how numerous they are!
Blessed be the Lord who daily loadeth us with benefits. All the temporal mercies granted so abundantly to us, our food, our clothing, our home, our friends, the daily provisions for our various necessities, these are from thee, who openest thy hand and fillest all things living with plenteousness. But, above all, blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly things in Christ Jesus. Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift.
Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever.
These prayers and praises we offer up in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, the Saviour of perishing sinners: trusting only in his mediation and merits.
Our Father, &.c.
FRIDAY MORNING. Bickersteth.
Almighty and heavenly Father, who art about our path, and about our bed, and spiest out all our ways; we come to thee in the name of thy beloved Son, to supplicate thy mercy as we enter upon the duties of another day.
Thou, O Lord, art a shield for us, our glory, and the lifter up of our heads. We laid us down, and slept; we awaked, for thou, Lord, hast sustained us. For restored light, for life, and health, and strength, we praise and bless thee. Thou, Lord, only, keepest us in safety, and free from evil. Thou providest for all our wants. May our souls, and all that is within us, magnify God for all his goodness, and especially for his wonderful mercy in redeeming sinners by Jesus Christ; for the light of that Sun of Righteousness, which arises with healing in his wings on benighted souls; for all the blessings of free salvation through him, all the means of grace, and the hope of future glory.
Sad are the returns which we have made for so many mercies. How ungrateful have we been! We acknow
ledge and bewail our manifold sins and rebellions. We were born in sin, and we find continually the flesh lusting against the spirit, and the spirit against the flesh, so that we cannot do the things that we would. We are guilty, sinful, and weak. Lord, save us, or we perish. We entirely depend on thy mercy, in Christ Jesus, for the gift and continuance of every good, and for deliverance from all those evils which we have justly deserved.
For that mercy we now earnestly look to thee, O Father of mercies. Remember us, O Lord, with the favour that thou bearest unto thy people. O visit us with thy salvation; that we may see the good of thy chosen, that we may rejoice in the gladness of thy people, that we may glory with thine inheritance. May the grace of God which bringeth salvation, teach us, and all men, to deny ungodliness and worldly lusts, and to live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world. Enable us now, and ever hereafter, to seek the glory of thy holy name, by fulfilling every duty of our station conscientiously and diligently.
Give us grace to be continually looking to thee, through this day, for direction, assistance, and strength. Be thou in all our thoughts, and let us acknowledge thee in all our ways.
Give us the same mind that was in Christ Jesus, that we may be humble, patient, gentle, and full of love, even as he was. Teach us to be poor in spirit, and meek; to mourn for sin, and to hunger and thirst after righteousness; and thus shall we obtain the blessings of the kingdom of Christ. Grant that we may love that Saviour whom we have not seen, and believing in him may we rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory.
And here constrained by thy mercies, we would afresh present our bodies a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable unto thee, which is our reasonable service. We renew in thy presence all our solemn vows, renouncing the world, the flesh, and the devil; and steadfastly purposing, by thy help, to keep thy holy will and commandments, and walk in the same this and every day of our lives. We take thee, O God, for our portion, laws as our rule, and thy service as our duty, entreating thee to give us grace that we may be wholly thine.
And O that all mankind knew and served thee. Grant that the kingdom which is righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost, may be established in every land, in every heart. Fulfil thy gracious promises. Send thy gospel to the Gentiles, and let them be turned from darkness to light. Let the kingdoms of this world speedily become the kingdoms of our God and his Christ, that he may 'reign for ever.
Grant the abundance of thy Holy Spirit to the ministers of Christ every where, and especially to him who watches over our souls. Bless the place and the neighbourhood in which we live, and prosper every effort to do good.
Lord, we beseech thee also to bless our more immediate relations. Regard with thy favour our parents, our brothers and sisters, our benefactors and friends, our connexions and acquaintance. Look upon them in mercy, and visit them with thy salvation. Hear these prayers, for the only sake of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Our Father, &c.
FRIDAY EVENING. Bickersteth.
Almighty God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the God of the spirits of all flesh, the earth is thine, and the fulness thereof, the round world, and they that dwell therein.
We come, as sinners, but trusting in thy beloved Son, our Advocate, and the propitiation for our sins, and looking for the promised spirit of grace and supplication.
Lord, we confess before thee our own sins, and those of our country. Like thy people of old, while we have been greatly distinguished by privileges, we have also been a sinful nation, a people laden with iniquity, a seed of evil doers, children that are corrupters. We have forsaken the Lord, and have provoked the Holy One of Israel. And chiefly, now, we would confess our coldness and indifference in extending the blessings of that glorious Gospel which thou hast entrusted to us. How slothful and unconcerned have we been to communicate to others the privileges which we enjoy, and to use all the means which thou hast given unto us of imparting the knowledge of Christ to distant lands! To us belong shame and confusion of face, because we have sinned against thee. But to the Lord our God belong mercies and forgivenesses, though we have rebelled against him.
We beseech thee give us a zeal for thy glory. Fountain of light, and life, and grace, pour upon us thy quickening Spirit, to animate and excite us to devote ourselves to thee. Raise up, we pray thee, those who shall unceasingly pray, and give, and think, and labour, for the spread of thy truth. Revive the days of the primitive church, when thy people, walking in the fear of the Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Ghost, were multiplied.
May the true light come more and more to thy church, and the glory of the Lord rise upon her; and may the Gentiles come to this light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising.
Lord, we plead the glory of thy great name, the faithfulness of thy promises, and the happiness of thine own creation; and with these pleas, we ask, that the heathen may be given to Christ for his inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for his possession.
O Lord, hast thou not said, "It shall come to pass in the last days that I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh?" Behold! in these last days: give now to us that ask. With thee is the residue of the Spirit; and the Lord's hand is not shortened that it cannot save, nor his ear heavy that it cannot hear.
Have respect unto the Covenant, for the dark places of the earth are full of the habitations of cruelty. May the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings, on those people now sitting in darkness and the shadow of death.
We pray thee to hasten the coming of that time, when it shall not be asked, Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the Lord revealed? but it shall be said, The Lord hath made bare his holy arm in the sight of all nations, and all the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God.
And grant, gracious Lord, that while the fulness of the Gentiles is come in, all Israel may also be saved. May the veil which remains upon their hearts when Moses is read, be taken away by their turning to the Lord. May this branch, which has so long been broken off, at length be grafted into its own Olive-tree.
O let the Deliverer come out of Zion, and turn away ungodliness from Jacob.
And while we thus pray, we thank thee, good and gracious Lord, for all the blessed signs of the times in which we live. We bless thee for the beginning of a general desire to spread thy truth through the world, and that societies have been raised in these latter days, among all denominations of thy servants, for evangelizing the heathen, and for their conversion from dumb idols to the living God. We thank thee for any success given to these efforts, and would thereby be encouraged to persevere in more zealous labours, and more fervent prayers.
*In this great work, O Lord, may we as a family, partake. Thou hast cast our lot in a Christian land, and surrounded us with Christian enjoyments. In all our comforts, may we regard thy hand, and while we enjoy so richly the light of thy gospel, may we remember that there are millions who are destitute. Thou hast brought us in safety, and amid many blessings, through another day. Thou hast caused the light of truth, like the light of the sun, to shine around us, and our dwelling. Thou hast encompassed our path; and hast given to us mercies bestowed on few of the human family. While we taste these blessings, and while we render thee praise for them, we would also pray, that they may be soon enjoyed by all nations. In the midst of a Christian land, and surrounded with the mercies of religion, liberty, education, and peace, we now commit ourselves to thy fatherly protection through the dangers of this night. Preserve us, O God, we pray thee, from all harm, and bless those who have no home, no pillow, no quiet abode—those that wander without any one to guide them; those that are confined in prison with no one to comfort them; those that are oppressed and in bondage, with no one to relieve; those that are in danger by land or by sea, and no one to protect them; those that are sick, with none to minister to them; and those that are dying, with no one to break to them the bread of life.—These blessings, for ourselves and our fellow creatures, we humbly beg, in the name of that merciful Redeemer, who, by the grace of God, tasted death for every man; and to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost, be honour and glory, both now and forever. Amen.*
SATURDAY MORNING. Bickersteth.
*we appear before thee, O Lord, our most merciful Father, to give thee thanks for preserving mercy through another night. To thy goodness we owe it, that we have laid us down and slept, for thou hast sustained us. Our voice shall thou hear in the morning. To thee would we come, and to thee would we look, O thou preserver of men.
Spared by thy mercy, we enter upon the duties and dangers of another day. Our bodies and our souls— our life, our property, our health, our talents, are all thine. Thou hast formed us, and not we ourselves. These bodies, fearfully and wonderfully made, are the proofs of thy wisdom and power. Thou art the Father of our spirits, and the God of our lives. Thou hast redeemed us by the blood of Christ, thine only Son. Thou hast sent down thy Holy Spirit to renew and sanctify our hearts. And to thee, and thy holy service, O Lord our God, we desire now unfeignedly and entirely to devote our lives. Make us useful to our fellow-creatures. Open before us paths of benevolence, and dispose us to walk therein. May our time, and influence, and property, and all that we have and are, be consecrated to thy holy service. May we not live in vain. When we die, whether it be this day, or at a future period, may we have the satisfaction of reflecting that we have been enabled by thy grace, to do something for that blessed cause, in behalf of which thy Son, though he was rich, yet became poor, and who gave himself unto death, that he might save a lost world.*
Holy, holy, holy Lord, we acknowledge it to be owing to thy infinite mercy, that we were not left in the darkness of heathen lands. Thou didst incline thy servants of old to send faithful missionaries to preach thy glorious gospel; thou didst support them in all their trials and difficulties, and at length this favoured country became a Christian land. And, Lord, how hast thou since blessed us above other nations, in the enjoyment of the light of thy truth, and in the power and means to communicate it! We feel that our privileges imply duties. Give us grace, then, to labour, that the word of the Lord may from us sound out in every place. We thank thee that thou hast given many the disposition to aid in this work, and that numbers of thy servants are united in societies, to send abroad the tidings of salvation. Lord, bless them all. Greatly increase the number of such as have at heart the good of Zion.
We thank thee, O Lord, that thy holy word is translating into numerous different languages, and that now so many nations may hear in their own tongues the wonderful works of God. Give yet greater success to these efforts. Facilitate this work by imparting, more and more, peculiar talents to those engaged therein.
Lord, do thou prepare and call forth labourers. Qualify fit instruments to conduct missionary efforts, and give them faith, wisdom, and judgment, uprightness, patience, and self-denial, a single eye, and a single heart, in all their proceedings. So incline their minds, that they may send none to labour among the heathen but those that are first chosen of thee: men anointed with the Holy Ghost. Do thou raise up meek, humble, patient, believing, laborious, and persevering men, counting their word their wages and looking for the recompense of reward hereafter: men suited to the exigencies of the heathen, in their various degrees of civilization and knowledge, and adapted to meet their wants in each particular situation; men willing to spend themselves, and be spent for Christ. Lord, send forth, we beseech thee, send forth such labourers.
Regard, we beseech thee, O Lord, with thy infinite love, those who have gone forth in thy name to heathen lands, to labour in making Christ known to the Gentiles. Help them to be followers of thy Apostles. Grant that they may never lose that first love and ardour of mind which induced them, for Christ's sake, to leave country, home, friends, and relatives. Preserve them sound in doctrine, and pure in their life and conversation. In the faith of Christ may they vanquish the world, the flesh, and the devil, and overcome apparently insurmountable difficulties. Give unto them utterance, that they may open their mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel. Give them grace to hope even against hope; and in thy own good time remove every opposing obstacle to the universal diffusion of thy truth. Let the course of thy providence prepare the way for thy servants. Let every fresh advance, either in commerce, science, or arts, aid the coming on of the Redeemer's kingdom; all things work together for good, till all shall know thee, the only true God, from the least to the greatest.
And for this we entreat the full out-pouring of thy Holy Spirit upon all flesh; upon kings of the earth and all people; upon all Christian ministers; upon princes, senators, and magistrates; young men and maidens, old men and children. Let them praise the name of the Lord, for his name alone is excellent, his glory is above the earth and heaven.
O Lord, it is not our glory we seek, but thine. We long, we ask, we pray, that thy will may be done on earth as it is in heaven; that all nations whom thou hast made may come and worship before thee, and glorify thy name. Lord, thou knowest our desires: we know not how to express them as we should. Do for us and thy church exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, for thy great name's sake.
These prayers we offer up in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Our Father, &c.
SATURDAY EVENING. Bickersteth.
O God, thou art the God of all the families of the earth; for they are formed by thy will, and supported by thy providence. But thou art, in a peculiar manner, the God of those families, in which thy name is known, and loved, and honoured. Thou blessest the habitation of the just. Whatever be the disposition of others, we desire to say, As for us, and our house, we will serve the Lord. Thy yoke is easy, thy burden is light; thy work is honourable and glorious; and in keeping thy commandments, there is great reward. Thou art the best of all masters; thou hast promised to bear with our infirmities, and to suffer us to want no good thing.
Already thou hast laid us under infinite obligations, as the God of providence and of grace; thou hast dealt well with thy servants, O Lord. Bless the Lord, O our souls, and all that is within us, bless his holy name. Bless the Lord, O our souls, and forget not all his benefits.
By thy good hand upon us, we have been conducted through the perils, not only of another day, but another week; a period, during which many have been carried down to their graves, and we have been brought so much nearer to our own. Impress us with the lapse of our time, and so teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom. Many have been involved in perplexities, and exposed to want; many have been confined to the house of mourning, or the bed of sickness; but we have been indulged with liberty, and ease, and health, and strength; we have seen thy loving kindness every morning, and thy faithfulness every night; and have had all things richly to enjoy.
But, O how little have we been affected by the instances of thy undeserved goodness; how imperfectly have we improved our religious privileges; how negligent have we been in seizing opportunities of doing good to the bodies and souls of our fellow-creatures— and how well does it become each of us to exclaim, Behold, I am vile; what shall I answer thee? wherefore I abhor myself, repenting in dust and ashes.
We appear before thee this evening in our trespass; enter not into judgment with thy servants, O Lord. Our only hope is, that to the Lord our God belong mercies and forgiveness, though we have rebelled against him. Have mercy upon us, O God, according to thy loving kindness, according to the multitude of thy tender mercies, blot out our transgressions.
And may a confidence in thy goodness, instead of encouraging us to sin, that grace may abound, inspire us with that godiy sorrow which worketh repentance unto life. May we hate and forsake every false way. May we be attentive to our condition, and study our character; may we bridle our tongue, and keep our heart with all diligence.
May we often look back and see, how at any time we have been ensnared or overcome; and watch and pray in future, lest we enter into temptation. And do thou keep us by thy power; uphold us by thy free Spirit; and not only restrain us from sin, but mortify us to it.
May sleep refresh our bodies, and fit them for thy service on the ensuing day; and may thy grace prepare our minds. May we leave all the cares of the world for a while, behind; that we may attend on the Lord without distraction. May we repair to the hallowed exercises of devotion, as the hart panteth after the water brooks. May we call the Sabbath a delight, and be glad when they say to us, Let us go into the house of the Lord.
And, O thou God of all grace, do as thou hast said; fulfil thy word unto thy servants, upon which thou hast caused them to hope. Bless abundantly the provisions of thy house, and satisfy thy poor with bread. Clothe thy priests with salvation, and let thy saints shout aloud for joy.
And to the God of all grace, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost, be all honour and glory, both now and for ever. Amen.
SABBATH MORNING. Cotterill.
O Thou, Lord of the Sabbath, who hast set apart this day for thyself, and hast commanded us to keep it holy to thy name, look down upon a family of sinful creatures who are assembled together to acknowledge thy goodness in bringing us to see it.
We adore thee for thy patience and forbearance in not dealing with us according to our deserts, nor rewarding us according to our iniquities. And we beseech thee to pour down upon us the abundance of thy grace, that we may rest this day according to thy commandment. Let not thy sabbath be a weariness to us, but our delight. Let us honour thee, by not doing our own ways, nor finding our own pleasure, nor speaking our own words.
Bless us, O Lord, with all spiritual blessings in Christ Jesus: bless us, we pray thee, in turning away every one of us from our iniquities. Wash us in the fountain of that blood which cleanseth from all sin. Clothe us with the robe of that righteousness, which is, by faith of Jesus Christ, unto all and upon all them that believe.
Prepare us for the various duties which are now before us.
Sanctify unto us thy appointed means of grace. Send out thy light and thy truth; let them lead us; let them bring us to thy holy hill, and to thy tabernacle. May we go with the multitude to thy house of prayer, with the voice of joy and praise, with the multitude that keep holy-day. There may we give thee the glory which is due unto thy name, and worship thee in the beauty of holiness. May we see thy power and thy glory, so as thy servants see them in the sanctuary; and be satisfied with the goodness of thy house, even of thy holy temple.
Grant, O Lord, that the Scriptures, which thou hast caused to be written for our learning, may be applied to our hearts in the demonstration of the Spirit, and of power. May we in such wise hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them, that we may embrace, and ever hold fast, the blessed hope of everlasting life, through a crucified Redeemer.
Hear our prayers, O God, for all Christian ministers; [especially for him whom thou hast appointed over us;] and endue them with the grace of thy Holy Spirit. Give unto them the spirit of love, and of power, and of a sound mind. Make them able ministers of the New Testament, faithful stewards of thy mysteries. Help them to take heed to themselves and to the doctrine; that so, according to thy promise, they may both save themselves and those who hear them.
We beseech thee to inspire continually the Universal Church with the spirit of truth, unity, and concord; and grant that all they who do confess thy name, may agree in the truth of thy holy word, and live in unity and godly love. May numbers be added to it, every Sabbath day, of such as shall be saved.
Look in mercy upon such as have hitherto neglected thy Sabbaths. Teach them to improve those that remain; and so to redeem the time which they have lost, that they may be numbered among thy true people.
Remember for good as many as, through sickness, or any other impediment, may be prevented from attending the ordinances of thy house, and the habitation which their soul loveth. Let thy presence be with them in their private meditations, even as with those who shall assemble together in the place where thy honour dwelleth.
We pray thee, also, to have compassion upon those who as yet belong not to thy visible Church.
O Thou who art a light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel, shine upon the nations which are sitting in darkness, and in the shadow of death.
Give, O Lord, the word, that great may be the company of the preachers, who shall go forth into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. Let nation after nation be converted to the Christian faith, till the kingdoms of this world become the kingdoms of our Lord and of his Christ, and the earth be filled with the knowledge of thy glory, as the waters cover the sea.
Hear, we beseech thee, O heavenly Father, these our imperfect petitions; and answer them in the multitude of thy tender mercies, for the sake of Jesus Christ, our only Lord and Saviour; to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost, be all honour and glory, world without end.
Our Father, &c.
SABBATH EVENING. CotteriU.
O God, whose nature and property is ever to have mercy, and to forgive, receive our humble petitions; and though we be tied and bound with the chain of our sins, yet let the pitifulness of thy great mercy loose us, for the honour of Jesus Christ, our Mediator and Advocate.
O Lord, the only begotten Son, Jesus Christ; O Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father, that takest away the sins of the world, have mercy upon us. Thou that takest away the sins of the world, have mercy upon us. Thou that takest away the sins of the world, receive our prayer. Thou that sittest at the right hand of God the Father, have mercy upon us. For thou only art holy: thou only art the Lord: thou only, O Christ, with the Holy Ghost, art most high in the glory of God the Father.
And as we beseech thee, O Lord, to forgive us all our sins, negligences, and ignorances, (particularly those of the past day,) so may it please thee to give us true repentance; and to endue us with the grace of thy Holy Spirit, to amend our lives according to thy holy word.
O Thou, from whom all good things do come, grant to us, thy humble servants, that, by thy holy inspiration, we may think those things that be good, and by thy merciful guiding, may perform the same.
Accept, we beseech thee, O Lord, our hearty thanks for the means of grace which have been vouchsafed us this day; and for every blessing which thou hast bestowed upon us.
To thee be ascribed all the good which we have received ourselves, and all which has been wrought in others.
We bless thee in behalf of those who may have been turned from their evil ways, or who have been comforted, instructed, and in any way edified, in thy house of prayer.
For these, and all thy other mercies, our souls do magnify thy glorious name, which is exalted above all blessing and praise.
We further beseech thee, O Father Almighty, to
open the ears of thy compassion to our supplications for others.
Mercifully look upon the Universal Church which thou hast purchased to thyself with the precious blood of thy dear Son.
And to those that shall be ordained to any holy function, give thy grace and heavenly benediction; that, both by their life and doctrine, they may set forth thy glory, and set forward the salvation of all men.
Bless the words which have been spoken in thy name this day; and let them not prove to any the savour of death unto death, but of life unto life, to all who have heard them.
Be gracious unto thy servants who have met together with us in thy courts: and grant that as many as are planted in this house of the Lord, may flourish in the courts of the house of our God.
Have mercy on those by whom the day of rest has been disregarded. Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.
Be favourable, also, unto those who have been kept by sickness, or any other necessity, from joining the public assemblies of thy Church. Do thou, Almighty Lord, who art a most strong tower unto them that put their trust in thee, to whom all things in heaven, and in earth, and under the earth, do bow and obey; be now and evermore their defence, and make them to know and to feel that there is none other name under heaven given to man, in whom and through whom, they may receive health and salvation, but only the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
We give thee hearty thanks, likewise, for such of them as it may have pleased thee this day to deliver out of the miseries of this sinful world; beseeching thee, that it may also please thee, of thy gracious goodness, shortly to accomplish the number of thy elect, and to hasten thy kingdom; that we, with all those that are departed in the true faith of thy holy name, may have our perfect consummation and bliss, both in body and soul,in thy eternal and everlasting glory, through Jesus Christ, our Lord; in whose name we offer up these our prayers; and conclude them in the words which he himself has taught us to use:
Our Father, Ecc.
MONDAY MORNING. H. More.
Almighty and most merciful Father! thou art a God that hearest prayer; and we are encouraged to draw nigh unto thy throne of grace, most humbly beseeching thee to look upon us, according to thy tender mercy in Jesus Christ. We confess our daily offences against thee in thought, word, and deed. If thou shouldst be extreme to mark what is done amiss, O Lord, who might abide it! Deal not with us after our sins, neither reward us after our iniquities. We bless thee for that all prevailing Advocate, Jesus Christ, the righteous: by his cross and intercession, good Lord, deliver us.
We are now about to enter upon the worldly employments of another week: strengthen us with thy grace, that these may not withdraw our hearts from thee, nor make us negligent of our souls, and our salvation. May the influences of the Sabbath rest upon us through the week, and may the solemn and blessed truths which we heard yesterday, in the house of prayer, abide in our memories, and direct our conduct!
With many thanks for thy mercies during the past night, we now cast ourselves upon thy protection, not knowing what this day may bring forth; but trusting in that wisdom which cannot err, and in that love which cannot fail; do thou appoint our lot as seemeth good to both. Father, not our will, but thine be done! Preserve us from temptation; preserve us from sin; preserve us from our own evil hearts; and if we are permitted to see the close of this day, let us look back upon it as one in which we have walked with God.
Preserve us from the power of evil; from the sin that doth so easily beset us; from the lusts of the flesh, and the vanities of a wicked world.
Send thy good Spirit to direct and guide us in the ways and works of godliness; purify our affections; enliven our devotion; teach us how to pray, and how to hear, and read, and profit by thy holy word. Make us Christians, not only in name, but also in heart and in hope. Teach us the value of our souls, and the salvation which has been wrought for them by Christ Jesus. May we never be ashamed of confessing him before men, but, amidst all discouragements and difficulties, give us boldness to show ourselves his true disciples.
Let our conversation be such as becometh his gospel; and whatsoever we do in word or in deed, let us do all in his name, giving thanks to God and the Father through him. And let the words of our mouths, and the meditations of our hearts, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, our strength, and our Redeemer.
Our Father, &c.
MONDAY EVENING. H. More.
O Lord God Almighty, we bless thee for all the mercies of the past day, and we pray thee now to take us under thy care, and to deliver us from all the perils and dangers of this night. Preserve us, O Lord, both in body and soul, from every evil, and keep us from all sinful thoughts when we are about to close our eyes in sleep.
And pardon, we beseech thee, all our offences, for the sake of Jesus Christ. We confess, O Lord, that we have this day left undone many things which we ought to have done, and done many things which we ought not to have done. Pardon all our pride and vanity, our idleness and self-indulgence, our impatience, fretfulness, and discontent. Pardon, O Lord, all the rash and angry words which we have this day spoken, and all the sinful thoughts which have arisen up in our minds, and which we have not been careful to resist. And especially, we pray thee, to pardon our forgetfulness of thee, our God, and our want of gratitude and love to Jesus Christ. For these, and all our other sins, which, from time to time, we have committed, we here implore thy pardon and forgiveness, in the name of our most merciful Saviour.
And since we know that our life is so short and uncertain, help us, day by day, to think of our latter end. O Lord, grant us grace so to live that we be not afraid to die; and do thou receive our souls at last into thine eternal kingdom.
Enable us this night to shake off all worldly cares and desires, and to meditate upon thee; let thy Holy Spirit be present with us, to purify our hearts, and to bring before us the things which concern our peace, and to inspire us with godly resolutions.
Above all things, make us rightly to understand thine infinite mercy in the redemption of mankind by Jesus Christ, and diligently to avail ourselves of all our privileges, as his disciples, and thy children by adoption and grace.
O heavenly Father, we commit ourselves to thy holy keeping this night, and desire to rest securely under the shadow of thy protection. Defend us from all perils and dangers, and especially from those which may assault and hurt the soul. Prepare us by comfortable repose for the duties of the morrow; and grant that we may rise disposed and strengthened for thy service, as faithful and diligent disciples of thy blessed Son; in whose words we further pray:
Our Father, Ecc.
TUESDAY MORNING. Com. Prayer.
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name; thy kingdom come; thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven; give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil; for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever, and ever.
Almighty and everlasting God, in whom we live, and move, and have our being; we, thy needy creatures, render thee our humble praises for thy preservation of us from the beginning of our lives to this day, and especially for having delivered us from the dangers of the past night. To thy watchful providence we owe it, that no disturbance hath come nigh us or our dwelling, but that we are brought in safety to the beginning of this day. For these thy mercies, we bless and magnify thy glorious name; humbly beseeching thee to accept this our morning sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving, for his sake who lay down in the grave, and rose again for us, thy Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ.
And since it is of thy mercy, O gracious Father, that another day is added to our lives; we here dedicate both our souls and our bodies to thee and thy service, in a sober, righteous, and godly life; in which resolution, do thou, O merciful God, confirm and strengthen us; that, as we grow in age, we may grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
But O God, who knowest the weakness and corruption of our nature, and the manifold temptations which we daily meet with; we humbly beseech thee to have compassion on our infirmities, and to give us the constant assistance of thy Holy Spirit; that we may be effectually restrained from sin, and excited to our duty. Imprint upon our hearts such a dread of thy judgments, and such a grateful sense of thy goodness to us, as may make us both afraid and ashamed to offend thee. And, above all, keep in our minds a lively remembrance of that great day, in which we must give a strict account of our thoughts, words, and actions; and, according to the works done in the body, be eternally rewarded or punished, by him whom thou hast appointed the Judge of quick and dead, thy Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
In particular, we implore thy grace and protection for the ensuing day. Keep us temperate in our meats and drinks, and diligent in our several callings. Grant us patience under any afflictions thou shalt see fit to lay on us, and minds always contented with our present condition. Give us grace to be just and upright in all our dealings; quiet and peaceable; full of compassion; and ready to do good to all men according to our abilities and opportunities. Direct us in all our ways, and prosper the works of our hands in the business of our several stations. Defend us from all dangers and adversities; and be graciously pleased to take us, and all things belonging to us, under thy fatherly care and protection. These things, and whatever else thou shalt see necessary and convenient to us, we humbly oeg, through the merits and mediation of thy Son, Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour.
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Ghost, be with us all evermore. Amen.
TUESDAY EVENING. Com. Prayer.
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name; thy kingdom come; thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven; give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever.
Most merciful God, who art of purer eyes than to behold iniquity, and hast promised forgiveness to all those who confess and forsake their sins; we come before thee in an humble sense of our own unworthiness, acknowledging our manifold transgressions of thy righteous laws. But, O gracious Father, who desirest not the death of a sinner, look upon us, we beseech thee, in mercy, and forgive us all our transgressions. Make us deeply sensible of the great evil of them; and work in us an hearty contrition; that we may obtain forgiveness at thy hands, who art ever ready to receive humble and penitent sinners; for the sake of thy Son Jesus Christ, our only Saviour and Redeemer.
And lest, through our own frailty, or the temptations which encompass us, we be drawn again into sin, vouchsafe us, we beseech thee, the direction" and assistance of thy Holy Spirit. Reform whatever is amiss in the temper and disposition of our souls; that no unclean thoughts, unlawful designs, or inordinate desires, may rest there. Purge our hearts from envy, hatred, and malice; that we may never suffer the sun to go down upon our wrath; but may always go to our rest in peace, charity, and good-will, with a conscience void of offence towards thee and towards men; that so we may be preserved, pure and blameless, unto the coming of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
And accept, O Lord, our intercessions for all mankind. Let the light of thy gospel shine upon all nations; and may as many as have received it, live as betomes it. Be gracious unto thy church; and grant that every member of the same, in his vocation and ministry, may serve thee faithfully. Bless all in authority over us; and so rule their hearts, and strengthen their hands, that they may punish wickedness and vice, and maintain thy true religion and virtue. Send down thy blessings, temporal and spiritual, upon all our relations, friends, and neighbours. Reward all who have done us good, and pardon all those who have done or wish us evil, and give them repentance and better minds. Be merciful to all who are in any trouble; and do thou, the God of pity, administer to them according to their several necessities, for his sake who went about doing good, thy Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ.
To our prayers, O Lord, we join our unfeigned thanks for all thy mercies; for our being, our reason, and all other endowments and faculties of soul and body; for our health, friends, food, and raiment, and all the other comforts and conveniences of life. Above all, we adore thy mercy in sending thy only Son into the world to redeem us from sin and eternal death, and in giving us the knowledge and sense of our duty towards thee. We bless thee for thy patience with us, notwithstanding our many and great provocations; for all the directions, assistances, and comforts of thy Holy Spirit; for thy continual care and watchful providence over us through the whole course of our lives; and particularly for the mercies and benefits of the past day; beseeching thee to continue these thy blessings to us; and give to us grace to show our thankfulness in a sincere obedience to his laws, through whose merits and intercession we received them all, thy Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ.
In particular, we beseech thee to continue thy gracious protection to us this night. Defend us from all dangers and mischiefs, and from the fear of them; that we may enjoy such refreshing sleep as may fit us for the duties of the following day. Make us ever mindful of the time when we shall lie down in the dust; and grant us grace always to live in such a state, that we may never be afraid to die: so that living and dying we may be thine, through the merits and satisfaction of thy Son, Christ Jesus, in whose name we offer up these our imperfect prayers.
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Ghost, be with us all evermore, rfmen.
WEDNESDAY MORNING. CotteriU.
Almighty and most merciful Father, we have erred and strayed from thy ways like lost sheep. We have followed too much the devices and desires of our own hearts. We have offended against thy holy laws. We have left undone those things which we ought to have done; and we have done those things which we ought not to have done; and there is no health in us. But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us, miserable offenders. Spare thou them, O God, which confess their faults. Restore thou them that are penitent; according to thy promises declared unto mankind, in Christ Jesus our Lord.
And grant, O most merciful Tather, for his sake, that we may hereafter live a godly, righteous, and sober life, to the glory of thy holy name.
Help us, especially, so to live through the day upon which we have entered.
Bless us in all our ways; and, whatever we do, may we do it heartily as unto thee, with a single eye to thy glory, and a humble dependence on thy fatherly protection.
Enlighten our understanding; control our wills; and sanctify our affections. Preserve us, that neither the pleasures, nor the cares, nor the honours of this life, turn away our thoughts from the life which is to come. May we learn and labour daily to live above the world; and to follow all our occupations in it with a heavenly mind.
Enable us faithfully to discharge our several duties to thee and to our fellow-creatures; that we may be useful in our generation among men, and steadfast in our covenant with thee. Having had much forgiven of thee, may we love thee much, and strive to please thee in all our ways.
And grant that nothing may ever separate between us and thee, by causing us to grow weary of thy service. But may we keep thy covenant for ever; and think upon thy commandments to do them, finding thy yoke easy, and thy burden light; yea, accounting thy service perfect freedom, and the very joy of our heart.
Lord, we pray thee that thy grace may always attend us, and make us continually to be given to all good works.
We desire to offer up our unfeigned thanksgivings for tlie good which thou mayest already have wrought in us, and for every mercy which thou hast vouchsafed to our bodies and our souls. Day by day we give thanks unto thee, and praise thy name.
Glory be to God on high, and on earth peace, good will towards men. We praise thee, we bless thee, we worship thee, we glorify thee, we give thanks unto thee, for thy great glory, O Lord God, heavenly King, God the Father Almighty.
We beseech thee, O Lord, to embrace with the arms of thy mercy, not only ourselves, but all who partake of our fallen nature. Pity and convert the wicked. May they no longer make a mock at sin, but learn to tremble at that wrath which thou hast revealed against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, fearing thee, who art able to destroy both body and soul in hell. Give them grace to stand in awe of thy judgments, and to sin no more.
Bless thy faithful people with knowledge and good understanding in the ways of godliness: and let not the children of this world be wiser in their generation than the children of light.
And since many are the afflictions of the righteous, Lord, remember them, and all their troubles; yea, may they be had before thee in everlasting remembrance. Though troubled on every side, let them not be distressed; though perplexed, let them not be in despair; though persecuted, let them not be forsaken; though cast down, let them not be destroyed. In all their afflictions be thou afflicted; and let the angel of thy presence save them. In thy love, and in thy pity, do thou redeem them; and bear them, and carry them, as in the days of old.
Grant that every affliction, though not for the present joyous, but grievous, may yield the peaceable fruits of righteousness to such as are exercised thereby.
And do thou bring them, at the last, to that place of rest and peace, where thou wilt wipe away all tears from their faces; where there shall be no more sorrow, nor crying; neither shall there be any more pain; and the former things shall pass away.
Assist us mercifully, O Lord, in these our supplications and prayers; and dispose the way of thy servants towards the attainment of everlasting salvation; that, among all the changes and chances of this mortal life, we may ever be defended by thy most gracious and ready help, through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Our Father, &c.
WEDNESDAY EVENING. Cotterill.
O Lord, thou hast been our refuge from one generation to another. Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever the earth and the worlds were made, thou art God from everlasting, and world without end.
Upon thy mercy-seat in the heavens thou waitest to be gracious; and we, thy sinful creatures, draw nigh unto thee, as unto a God in Christ, reconciling the world unto thyself, not imputing their trespasses unto them.
We trust, O Lord, to the word of thy promise, that though we have sinned, we have an Advocate with thee, Jesus Christ the righteous, who is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but for the sins of the whole world.
If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us; but if we confess our sins, thou art faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
We pray thee, therefore, to create and make in us new and contrite hearts; that we, worthily lamenting our sins, and acknowledging our wretchedness, may obtain of thee, the God of all mercy, perfect remission and forgiveness. Regard us no longer as children of wrath, but as dear children; heirs of the kingdom of heaven, and joint-heirs with Christ. Satisfy us with thy mercy, and that soon, that we may rejoice and be glad in thee all our days.
Grant us, according to the riches of thy glory, to be strengthened with might, by thy Spirit, in the inner man. Let Christ dwell in our hearts by faith, that, being rooted and grounded in love we may be able to comprehend, with all saints, what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height, and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that we may be filled with all the fulness of thee our God.
Thou hast brought and defended us, O heavenly Father, through the dangers of another day; and hast blessed us with every needful blessing, in our going out and coming in.
But, we beseech thee, O God of the spirits of all f.esh, in whom alone we live, and move, and have our being-, to touch our hearts with the solemn and affecting truth, that we know not what shall be on the morrow. Keep us constantly mindful, that in the midst of life we ure in death. Of whom may we seek for succour but of fliee, O Lord, who, for our sins, art justly displeased? Yet, O Lord God, most holy, O Lord, most mighty, O holy and merciful Saviour, thou most worthy Judge eternal, suffer us not, at our last hour, for any pains of death to fall from thee.
Give ear, O Lord, to our prayers for our fellow-creatures.
Put the ungodly in fear, that they may know themselves to be but men. Incline them seriously to think on their ways, and turn their feet unto thy testimonies.
Let all those who trust in thee rejoice; because their redemption draweth nigh; and their salvation is nearer than when they first believed.
Be gracious unto such as, in this transitory world, are suffering, either for their sins or for righteousness' sake; and sanctify their sufferings to the good of their souls.
Lastly, we pray thee, Almighty God, with whom do live the spirits of just men made perfect, after they are delivered from their earthly prisons, to look with compassion on all whom the sorrows of death are encompassing about. We commend their souls into thy hands, as into the hands of a faithful Creator and most merciful Saviour; humbly beseeching thee, that they may be precious in thy sight. Wash them in the blood of that spotless Lamb that was slain to take away the sins of the world, that they may be presented pure, and without spot before thee.
And teach us who survive, in every daily spectacle of mortality, to remember how frail and uncertain our own condition is; and so to number our days that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom. Grant that neither the splendour of any thing that is great, nor the conceit of any thing that is good in us, may withdraw our eyes from looking upon ourselves as sinful dust and ashes: but that we may press forward to the prize of the high calling that is before us, in faith and patience, humility and meekness, mortification and self-dental, charity and constant perseverance unto the ead; and all this for thy Son, our Lord Jesus Christ's sake: to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost, be all honour and glory, world without end.
Our Father, &c.
THURSDAY MORNING. Cotlerill.
Almighty God, whose eyes run to and fro throughout all the earth, we adore and magnify thee, as the author of all our blessings, and the source of all our happiness.
Every good gift, and every perfect gift, is from above, and cometh down from thee, the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.
Thou preservest to us our life and health, our food and raiment, our friends and benefactors, our private and public blessings, the means of grace, and the hope of glory. Thou art worthy of our highest adoration, our liveliest gratitude, and our most unfeigned praise.
But wherewithal shall we come before thee? And how shall we give unto thee the honour due unto thy name? All that we have is unworthy of thy regard; and our best returns serve only to remind us, how gracious thou art in receiving them. Not for our sakes, O Lord, not for our sakes, dost thou continue to bless us from day to day, and permit us to come into thy presence; but because thou delightest in mercy; because thy goodness is from everlasting to everlasting; and because, above all, thou hast respect unto the sacrifice of thy beloved Son, who gave himself a ransom for our souls.
For his sake, O Lord, continue to us all our blessings; and be gracious unto us, even as thou art wont. Grant that the number of thy mercies, in Christ Jesus, may ever triumph over the multitude of our sins; and that •ur supplications and praises, stained as they are with imperfection and defilement, may, through his most precious blood-shedding, daily enter with acceptance into thy ears, O Lord of hosts.
In his all-prevailing name we beseech thee to look down upon us in compassion this morning. Let thy thoughts towards us be thoughts of peace, and not of evil. j>*/
As thou hast kept us from the terror by night, and from the pestilence that walketh in darkness, so may it please thee to save us from the arrow that flieth by day, and from the destruction that wasteth at noon.
O merciful Father, that despisest not the sighing of a contrite heart, nor the desire of such as be sorrowful, mercifully assist pur prayers that we make before thee, in all our troubles and adversities, whensoever they oppress us; and graciously hear us, that those evils which the craft and subtlety of the devil or man worketh against us, be brought to nought, and by the providence of thy goodness they may be dispersed, that we, thy servants, being hurt by no persecutions, may evermore give thanks unto thee, and praise thy holy name.
Enable us to pass this day, and all our days, in thy faith and fear.
Preserve us, that our minds be not overcharged with the cares of this life.
Make us humble in prosperity; and patient and thankful in the time of adversity.
Suffer us not to be occupied in ungodly works with the men that work wickedness. Let us not do the things that please them, and so become partakers of their sins. But give us grace to set our face as a rock against sin, and vanity, and every appearance of evil; and let not our hearts be inclined to any evil thing, but only to that which pleaseth thee.
Thou hast showed us, O Lord, what is good, and what thou requirest of us. Help us to obey thy commandment, to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thee, our God. And, having received how we ought to walk and please thee, may we abound more and more. Vouchsafe, we beseech thee, continually to direct, sanctify, and govern, both our hearts and bodies in the ways of thy laws, and in the works of thy commandments; that through thy most mighty protection, both here and ever, we may be preserved in body and soul.
O thou God of kingdoms, and Lord of heaven and earth, give thy blessing to all nations; especially to that in which thou hast cast our lot.
We are, indeed, a sinful people, laden with iniquity; and it is entirely of thy mercies that we have not been consumed. But continue, we pray thee, to spare and bless us; and grant that all thy goodness towards us may lead us to repentance. Be thou our God, and may we be thy people; that all the world may know that thou art our Defender and Almighty Deliverer.
Bless the neighbourhood in which we dwell, and the families with whom we are more immediately connected. May they be taught of thee to be kindly affectioned one toward another; and to dwell together in peace and love, and do thou, the God of peace and love, be with them now and evermore.
We further pray thee to shed thy favour and blessing upon this family. Increase our love to thee, and to each other; and make it our delight thus to meet before thy throne, to offer up our prayers and praises, through Jesus Christ, our only Mediator and Advocate.
Our Father, &c.
THURSDAY EVENING. Cotterill.
Almighty and everlasting Lord God, the Creator of the ends of the earth, that faintest not, neither art weary, whose mercy endureth forever, who is a God like unto thee, that pardonest iniquity, that passest by the transgression of thy heritage; and retainest not thy anger forever, because thou delightest in mercy?
When we call to remembrance the days that are gone, from our youth up even until now, and consider how many of them have been spent in forgetfulness of thee, innumerable sorrows might well encompass us; and our sins take such hold upon us, that we should not be able to look up. Seeing they are more in number than the hairs of our head, our hearts might well fail because of them, did we not know that thy compassions fail not.
We have abundant cause, O Lord, to remember and to be confounded, and never to open our mouth any more because of our shame, even though thou shouldst be pacified towards us for all that we have done.