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CONFESSION, PRAISE FOR THE SCRIPTURES, AND
O Lord our God, who hast made us, and not we ourselves, and who graciously regardest us as thy people and the sheep of thy pasture, and as the church which thou hast purchased with the blood of thy only-begotten Son, receive our humble supplications, and assist us now by thy Spirit really and fervently to pray unto thee.
We thank thee that thou hast appointed a throne of grace; we thank thee that thine ear is open to our prayers; we thank thee that it is our duty to pray, and that thou, to this very hour, hearest and answerest the prayers of all them that call upon thee.
Great is our sinfulness and multiplied are our wants. God is not in all our thoughts; our affections cling to the world and to the creature; unbelief prevails within us; we dishonour thee by our inconsistencies, our unholy dispositions, our selfishness and our disobedience. We have turned every one to his own way, and are justly exposed to thy awful condemnation.
Help us then truly to see our sinfulness, and really to know and believe, that through Jesus there is forgiveness of all our sins, however numerous, however great. Help us to believe that he was really wound
ed for our transgressions and bruised for our iniquities, and that the chastisement of our peace was laid upon him.
And in the full belief of these most precious truths of thy holy word, may we every one of us truly be sorry, from the heart, for so sinning against him who has so greatly loved us. May we have thus that godly sorrow which worketh repentance unto salvation, not to be repented of; and that cordial and fervent love which comes from believing that thou hast thus deeply and unquestionably first loved us.
Many have been thy mercies to us, O our God, in the past day. We praise thee for every personal mercy, for every family mercy, for all our domestic comforts. We bless thee for the full light of thy revealed truth, for all its saving doctrines, all its holy precepts, all its instructive history and patterns of holiness, all its profitable threatenings, and all its precious promises. And above all, we thank Thee for Him who is its Alpha and Omega, its sum and substance; Jesus Christ, the light of life, our complete and all-sufficient Saviour.
O may this word of thy grace have free course, and be glorified in all the earth. May it be made known in every tongue and to every people, east and west, north and south, throughout the world. Let there not be one portion of the habitable globe destitute of the saving light of thy truth. May it dispel the superstitions of Popery, the delusions of
Mahomedanism, and the darkness of infidelity. May it revive decayed churches, and be more understood, believed and obeyed in every nation where it is circulated, till at length the Redeemer return, and the knowledge of the glory of the Lord covers the earth as the waters do the sea.
Bless more especially our family connexions and all our relatives; [our city,] our Christian friends, our church and all its ministers, and all the ministers of Christ. Guide our statesmen. Multiply thy grace on all our magistrates. Give spiritual prosperity to our rulers, and make our country a blessing to all lands, through Jesus Christ, the only King of kings and Lord of lords. Amen.
TO DO ALL IN THE NAME OF JESUS.
O thou who takest to thyself this character, that thou resistest the proud and givest grace to the humble, discover to us, by thine own Spirit, our sinfulness and our ruin, our total corruption and depravity in ourselves; that we may loathe and abhor ourselves, and come in the abased spirit of the publican before thee, crying, each from the deep feeling of his own heart, God be merciful to me a sinner.
Yet give us also that true faith which believes all thy promises, and is confident that nothing can really
fail of what the Lord has spoken, and that the scripture cannot be broken. Thou, O Jesus, hast said, Whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. In the name of Jesus we ask of thee, O Father, the Holy Spirit, to abide in us for ever. We ask farther, in the same precious name, the gift of faith, purifying the heart, working by love, and overcoming the world. In the name of Jesus we ask for inward holiness and diffusive usefulness. O give us the joy of being useful to all around us, and especially in their highest and best welfare, their spiritual and eternal good. Yet farther give us, we ask it in the same name, poverty of spirit, humility and lowliness of heart.
May reputation, or wealth, or enjoyments here be small things in our eyes, compared with likeness to Christ, suffering for his sake, and leading others to know and love him who died for us, and who will soon return again, that where he is we may be also.
Grant, O Lord, that whatsoever we do this day, we may do it in the name of the Lord Jesus. Help us by all the types and figures of him, given to us in thy word, and on the face of all creation, to realize continually his excellence and goodness. May we see Christ in the sun that shines upon us, in the bread that nourishes us, in the way in which we walk, in the friendship and brotherhood which comfort us, or in the tender relations of married life.
Since he hath said, No man cometh unto the Father but by me, may we especially regard him when worshipping thee, and rejoice in the assurance that Jesus is now in the heavens at thy right hand, making intercession for us; is now exalted, to bestow gifts and blessings even on the rebellious. Give then to us pardon and peace; give unto us a true heart to love thee and serve thee unfeignedly.
Assist us in all the undertakings of this day. May our self-will be subjugated, our self-wisdom be mortified, our pride be humbled and our humility deepened. O may we go through each of our employments in thy faith, fear and love. Let us not seek to please ourselves, but to please thee; let us not pursue our own glory, but thy glory; let us not speak idle, vain, foolish words, but words of soberness and truth; our speech being seasoned with salt, that it may minister grace to the hearers.
Let us look beyond the present moment or the present life, and live in distinct remembrance of what is certainly before us,-the judgment day,the account to be rendered, and the eternal issues of all we now say and do. And seeing the shortness of time and the great and many uncertainties of this life, may we redeem our time for the great ends for which it was given, thy glory in our salvation and the salvation of all within the reach of our influence and exertion and prayers. Thus help us this day and continually to lay ourselves out for the good of others.