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preaching the faith of God's elect, and testifying the truth which is according to godliness. O may we and all the saints and faithful brethren,in Christ Jesus, through the world, be filled with the knowledge of thy will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding, that we may walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of thee our God, strengthened with all might, according to thy glorious power, till we be meet for the inheritance of the saints in light, and come to see thee as thou art, and to know as we are known. Hear us, for Christ's sake.
FIRST PRAYER.-BEFORE ORDINATION.
O blessed Jesus, who didst love thy church and give thyself for it, and who didst purchase it with thine own blood, and after this ascending to heaven didst give apostles and prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers, for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry and for the edifying of the body of Christ, we beseech thee continue still to raise up from age to age faithful watchmen and stewards of thy mysteries. Multiply in our day able ministers of the New Covenant, workmen that need not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth, who shall be examples of believers in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, and in purity.
And especially give to the bishops and pastors of
thy flock a deep sense of the awful responsibility of appointing and ordaining those who are to serve thee in the ministry, that not laying hands suddenly on any, they may be preserved from being partakers of other men's sin. May the Holy Ghost himself separate faithful and able men for the work of the ministry, and endow them with all heavenly gifts for their blessed office. O may the unction from the Holy One descend upon them, and make them wise to win souls, so that continually there may be added to thy church such as shall be saved.
We ask this, O heavenly Father, for our Redeemer's sake, to whom with thee and the Holy Ghost be all honour and glory now and evermore. Amen.
SECOND PRAYER.-AFTER ORDINATION.
O thou Father of lights, with whom is no variableness nor shadow of turning, from whom is every good and every perfect gift, we earnestly unite in prayer for those ministers of thy word who have just been set apart for thy service. Give unto them heavenly wisdom, understanding in all things, the word of knowledge, discerning of spirits, working faith, patient hope, laborious love and abounding grace, according to the measure of the gift of Christ, that they may preach his unsearchable riches. May they follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience and meekness, and be in all things a pattern of good
works, in doctrine showing uncorruptness, gravity and sincerity. Preserve them from their special temptations, and may their speech and preaching ever be, not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power; so that the faith of those who hear them may not stand in the wisdom of man, but in the power of God, and a countless multitude may be their glory and joy-in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming. O hear us for our Redeemer's sake.
FIRST DAY OF THE YEAR.
O everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth, the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning, who from the beginning didst set the lights in the firmament of heaven to be for signs and for seasons, for days and for years, brought by thy goodness together in family worship at the beginning of another year, we would first of all, in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, present unto thee unfeigned thanksgivings for all thy loving-kindnesses bestowed upon us.
When we look back on all thy dealings in the past year, what reason we have to speak good of thy name and to testify that thou art good, that thy mercy is everlasting, and that thy truth endureth to all gene
rations. How countless thy mercies have been to us, at home and abroad, in dangers and in difficulties, in providing for all our wants, and day by day, from week to week, and month to month, giving us all things richly for enjoyment.
The same love, in deeper and fuller streams of goodness, we would see in the seasons of trials and afflictions through which we have passed. Thou hast called us in every thing to give thanks, and to glorify thee in the fires. We would then especially see thy love in trials, and praise thee for what has been humbling and painful in the past year. Thou hast taught us that by these things men live. Without these we should want the tokens of thy love and the means of fruitfulness. Help us to discern in them, not the penal judgments of a violated law, and avenging justice, but the fatherly chastisements of a tender Parent, having his mind fixed on our best good.
Help us to see the same love in our spiritual trials and conflicts. If thou hast called us to walk in darkness, in perplexity, in fear, in trembling and in temptation, and hast even given us proofs of what was in our heart in leaving us for a season to ourselves, O help us to discern in all things thy wisdom and our own nothingness. Help us to see that the trial of our faith is more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, and that all things are ours, whether the ministers of thy church, or the
world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come: all are ours, and we are Christ's and Christ is God's, and evermore then may we glory in thee alone.
May we see thy goodness and wisdom in what has been withheld, as well as in what has been given, and rise to full confidence of heart that thou art love, love in every thing.
And now in this confidence we commit unto thee all those things hidden from us in the future. True it is we know not the particular events which are before us; we know not whether those now assembled together shall at the close of this year assemble together again an unbroken circle, and be the living, the living to praise thee; but we commit all unto thee, knowing who orders all our steps, who performeth all things for us; we know he is our reconciled Father in Christ Jesus, and while humbled to the dust in the sense of our own past deep sinfulness, we cast all our care on thee, in the assurance thou carest for In the full conviction of the uncertainty of life and the shortness of time, that the strong may be cut off and the weak may be spared, and any of us here kneeling together may have to go through sickness and sorrow and danger, or may pass unto thy immediate presence, we would pray that thou wouldest only give us the scriptural and sweet assurance that we love thee, and are called according to thy purpose, that thou wouldest teach us the certainty of