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Rest set apart for thy Service, and the Concerns of my own Soul; to have a Day free from Distractions, disengaged from the World, wherein I have Nothing to do but to praise and to love thee. Give me Grace to Worship thee in my Closet and in the Congregation; to spend it in doing good, in Works of Necessity, Devotion, and Charity, in Prayer, and Praise, and Meditation. O let it be ever to me a Day sacred to divine Love, a Day of heavenly Rest and Refreshinent. Grant, O Lord, I may not only give thee due Worship myself
, but may give Rest and Leisure also to my Family, to all under my Charge, to serve thee also; to indulge Ease to my very Beasts, since good Men are merciful even to them. O blessed Spirit, who on the first Day of the Week didst descend in Miraculous Gifts and Graces on the Apostles, descend upon me, that I may be always in the Spirit on the Lord's Day. And since the Blessing of everlasting Salvation, which we Christians on thy Day commemorate, does wonderfully exceed the Creation commemorated by the Jews; O let our Love and Praise, Devotion and Zeal, proportionably exceed theirs also : and this I beg for Jesus Christ his Sake, our Lord and Saviour. Amen.
II. A General WORTHY art thou, O Lord of Heaven and giving.
Earth, to receive Glory, and Honour, and Power, for thou hast created all things, and for thy Pleasure they are and were created. Thou hast made Heaven, the Heaven of Heavens, with all their Host, the Earth and all Things that are therein; thou preservest them all, and the Host of Heaven praiseth thee. Glory be to thee, O Lord God Almighty, for creating Man after thine own Image, and making so great a Variety of Creatures to minister to his Use. Glory be to thee, O Heavenly Father, for my Being and Preservation, Strength and Health, Understanding and Memory, Friends and Benefactors, and for all my Abilities of
Vind and Body, Glory be to thee for my competent Livelihood, for the Advantages of my Education, for all my known or unobserved Deliverances; and for the Guard thy holy Angels keep over me. But above all, Glory be to thee, for giving thy Son to die for my Sins; and for all the Spiritual Blessings he has purchased for me; for my Baptism, and all the Opportunities thou givest me of serving thee, and of receiving the holy Eucharist; for whatever Sin I have escaped, for whatever Gogd I have done, or thought, for all my Helps of Grace, and Hopes of Heaven, Glory be to thee. Praise the Lord, O my Soul, and all that is within me, praise his holy Name.
Glory be to thee, O Lord Jesus ! for thy inex: pressible Love to loșt Man, for condescending to take our frail Nature on thee, for all thy heavenly Doctrine to instruct us, thy great Miracles to convince us, and thy unblamable Example to be a Guide to us. Glory be to thee, for thy Agony and bloody Sweat, for all the Torments and Anguish of thy bitter Passion. Glory be to thee for thy glorious Resurrection and Ascension into Heaven, and Intercession for us at the Right Hand of thy Father. O gracious Lord, thou who hast done so much for me, how can I ever sufficiently praise and love thee! Prạişe the Lord Jesus, O my Soul, and all that is within me, praise his holy Name.
Glory be to thee, O blessed Spirit, Glory bę to thee, for all the Miraculous Gifts and Graces thou didst bestow on the Apostles to fit them to convert the World, and for inspiring the sacred Penmen of Holy Scripture! Glory be to thee for instilling holy Thoughts into my Soul, for all the ghostly Strength and Support, Comfort and Illumination I receive from thee; for all thy preventing, and restraining and sanctifying Grace!" Glory be to thee, Blessed Spirit! let me never more by my Sins grieve thee, who art the Author of Life and Joy to me! Prøise the Lord, my Soul, and all that is within me praise his holy Name.
Blessing and Honour, Thanksgiving and Praise, more than I can utter, more than I can conceive, be unto thee, () most adorable Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, by all Angels, all Men, all Creatures, for ever and ever. Amen. Amen.
A. The four Sundays that precede the Great Festival of our Saviour's Nativity; which make a part of that Time appointed by the Church to prepare our Minds by proper Meditations for a due Commemoration of Christ's coming in the Flesh.
Q. When is the first Sunday in Advent?
A. The first Sunday in Advent is always the nearest Sunday to the Feast of St. Andrew, whether before or after.
Q. With what Temper of Mind ought we to commemorate the great Blessing of Christ's Coming in the Flesh?
A. With firm Purposes and sincere Resolutions of conforming ourselves to the End and Design of
our Saviour's coming into the World. For since 1 Juhn, i. the Son of God was manifested to destroy the Works
of the Devil, the great Care and Business of our Lives should tend to avoid every thing that is evil, to mortify the deeds of the Flesh, and not suffer Sin to reign in our mortal Bodies, that we should obey it in the Lusts thereof: That since he gave himself
for us, to purify to himself a peculiar People, zealous 2 Pet. i. 5, of good Works; we should give all Diligence to 6, 7, 8. add to our Faith Virtue, to Virtue Knowledge, to
Knowledge Temperance, to Temperance Patience, to Patience Godliness, to Godliness brotherly Kindness, and to brotherly Kindness Charity; for if these Things be in us, and abound, we shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the Knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Rom. vi. 12.
Tit. ii. 14.
Q. What Consideration doth the Church offer to us, as proper to bring our Lives to a Conformity with the End and Design of Christ's Coming in the Flesh?
A. The Consideration of his second Coming to judge the World, when he will execute Vengeance upon all those who obey not the Gospel of Christ.
Q. What do you mean by Christ's Coming to Judgment?
Ā. That our Lord Jesus Christ shall at the End of the World descend from Heaven in his human Nature, and summon all Mankind to appear before his dreadful Tribunal, where they shall come upon their Trial, have all their Actions strictly examined, and, according to the Nature and Quality of them, be adjudged to eternal Happiness or eternal Misery.
Q. How doth it appear that there shall be a general Judgment?
A. Both from the Principles of Reason, and the clear and express Testimonies of Scripture.
Q. How doth it appear from the Principles of Reason that there shall be a general Judgment?
4. The Light of Nature discovers to us an essential Difference between Good and Evil; whence, by the common Consent of Mankind, Rewards are affixed to the one, and Punishments to the other : And according as Men govern their Actions in Relation to these essential Differences of Good and Evil, so are their Hopes and their Fears. The Practice of Virtue is attended not only with present Quiet and Satisfaction, but with the comfortable Hope of a future Řecompence; the Commission of any wicked Action, though never so secret, sits uneasy upon the Mind, and fills it full of Horror and Amazement: All which would be very unaccountable without the natural Apprehension and Acknowledgment of future Rewards and Punishments. And it must be from this Principle, that many of the Heathens esteemed Virtue and Honesty dearer than Life, with all the Advantages of it, and ab
Acts, xvii. 31.
horred Villainy and Impiety worse than Death. Besides, the Dispensations of God's Providence towards Men in this World are very promiscuous ; good Men often suffer, and that even for the Sake of Righteousness; and bad Men as frequently prosper and flourish, and that by the Means of their Wickedness. So that to clear the Justice of God's Proceedings, it seems reasonable there should be a future Judgment for å suitable Distribution of
Rewards and Punishments. And this Principle of Ad Græc. a Judgment to come Justin Martyr propounds to
the Gentiles as generally acknowledged by all their Writers, and as the great Encouragement for his Apology for the Christian Religion.
Q. How does it appear from Scripture that there shall be a general Judgment:
A. God hath given Assurance unto all Men, that he will judge the World by Jesus Christ in that he hath raised him from the Dead. And the Process of that great Day, with several of the particular Circumstances of it, are fully described by our Saviour. St. Paul declares expressly, that we must all appear and stand before the Judgment-seat of Christ, St. Peter, that the Day of the Lord shall come, in which the
Heavens shall pass away with a great Noise, and the 2 Pet. iii. Elements shall melt with fervent Heat. No Doc
trine more clear and express, and fundamental in Heb. vi. 2. the Word of God, than that of eternal Judgment.
R. When shall this general Judgment be?
A. At the end of the World. When the State of our Trial and Probation shall be finished, it will be a proper Season for the Distribution of public
Justice, for the rewarding all those with eternal Rom. ii. Life, who by patient Continuance in well-doing, seek 7, 8, 9. for Glory and Honour, and Immortality; and for
rendering to them that obey not the Truth, but obey, Unrighteousness, Indignation and Wrath, Tribulation and Anguish.
Q. But if coery Man upon his Death shall pass into-u State of Happiness or Misery, what need is there of a general Judgment ?
Rom. xiv. 10. 2 Cor, v. 10.