« AnteriorContinuar »
q Then the minister shall dip him in the water, or
sprinkle water upon him, saying;
I baptize thee into [or, with reference to] the name of the father, and of the son, and of the holy spirit.
Or, the following form may be used;
I baptize thee into [or, with reference to ] the name of Jesus Christ.
Let us pray.
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, day by 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 tbine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.,
ALMIGHTY and everlasting God! heavenly father! who spakest, in tiines past, unto mankind by thy servants the prophets, but hast most fully manifested thy will and goodness to us, in these latter days, by thy scrvant Jesus Christ; look down, we pray thee, with thy favour upon this person, who hath now been baptized with water, and hath thereby declared himself member of thy church and chosen family on earth, of which our lord Jesus Christ is the head. Bless his desire to comply with this ordinance, that, being purified from all cvil by true repentance, he may be erabled constantly to walk before thee in virtue and holiness of life.
For this end, assist and bless him in his study of thy holy word, that he may receive ihy instructions with meckness, and follow them with readiness; and also may labour to bring others to the knowledge of thy truth, that they may, through thy mercy,
be saved by their obedience to thy will.
Give bim power and strength to withstand the various temptations in the midst of which we are placed for our trial and improvement, that he may gain the victory over them; and, especially, let the glorious prospect of life and immortality assu
red unto us by the gospel, make him count all the riches, the pleasures, and the greatness of this world as nothing, when they would shake his integrity, or divert bim from his obedience to thee. May the better knowledge of the scriptures lead him to add to his faith virtue; to virtue, knowledge, selt-command, patience, piety, brotherly affection, universal love, that so he may continually improve in all goodness, and be found deserving of, and capable of enjoying, the future glory and felicities of thine heavenly and eternal kingdom, which, of thy great bounty, thou hast promised us by Christ our lord. Amen.
You have now made public profession of your belief in Christ, and of your intention to live as becometh his true disciple.' And prayer hath been offered up to God for you, that it may please him to strengthen these your good purposes, that, by abiding in Christ, and following his doctrine, you may improve in the practice, and promote the better knowledge of truth and virtue in the world.
To accomplish this good work, you are, with diligence, and with earnest affection for the truth, to search the scriptures. They are a deep mine of hidden treasure to those who thus seek for it; in which fresh stores of divine wisdom continually open themselves to the pious and honest inquirer, and furnish him with more clear and extensive knowledge of the will of God and of his own duty, and also with new and powerful motives to the practice of it.
By being baptized, you do not declare yourself of any religious sect or party; but a christian. For you are baptized into, or, in other words, with reference to the name of Jesus Christ only; not of Paul, or of Peter; not of Athanasius, Arius or Socinus; not of Arminius or of Calvin ; all of whom, though faithful servants of God, and eminent teachers and reformers in the christian church, were fallible mortals, and mistaken in many things; and, therefore, are to be followed by us, no further than as they followed Christ, our common master, and taught the truth which he taught. This is our lord's charge to his apostles, which belongs also to all his followers ;
Every one, saith he, who shall confess me before men, I will also confess before my father, who is in heaven; but, whosoever shall deny me before men, I will also deny before my father, who is in heaven." Matt. x. 32, 33.
You are, therefore, to make open profession and acknowledgment of the divine truth of the gospel, so far as you have attained, or shall attain to it; and, at no time, through indolence, or the fear of man, or for any worldly consideration whatsoever, are you to disscmble or shrink from it.
If, by the blessing of the heavenly father, you have escaped from darkness and grievous errors, in which others may be involved, you are to beware and guard against the being elated by such knowledge, so as to think worse of their final state before God, and better of your own, merely on that account. For this will generate an unworthy pride and self-preference, and contempt of those who possess not the advantages which you enjoy. But, on the contrary, you ought to be the more humble, and to reflect, that it is not the splendour and abundance of the gifts of GOD, but the faithful use and