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good : and also since thou wilt help pone, but those, who are of a broken and contrite heart; we beseech thee to enlighten our understanding with thy boly spirit, and give us a meek heart, free from all haughtiness and carnal knowl. edge, that we may, hearing thy word, rightly understand it, and regulate our life accordingly: be graciously pleased to convert all those, who still stray from thy truth, that we may together with them, unanimously serve thee in true holiness and righteousness all the days of our life.
We crave all these things for Christ's sake, who hath thus taught us to pray in his name, and promised to hear us–Our Father, &c.
A prayer after the explanation of the Catechism. GRACIOUS God, and merciful Father, we give thee hearty thanks into thy covenant, which thou hast not only sealed unto them, by holy baptism, but yet daily showest, when thou perfectest thy praise out of their mouths, thus to cause the wise of the world to blush: we beseech thee, increase thy grace in them, that they may always grow and increase in Christ thy Son; till they acquire their perfect manly age in all knowledge and righteousness. Give us grace, that we may educate them, as thou hast commanded us, in thy knowledge and fear, that by their godliness the kingdom of satan may be destroyed, and the kingdom of Jesus Christ strengthened in this and other congregations, to the glory of thy holy name, and to their eternal salvation, through Jesus Christ. Amen.
A prayer before sermon in the week. EAVENLY Father, eternal and merciful God, we acknowledge and conceived in sin, and born in iniquity, prone to all evil, unfit for any good; and that we, by our sinful life, continually transgress thy holy commandments, wherehy we provoke thine anger against us, and according to thy righteous judgment, expose ourselves unto eternal damnation. But, o Lord, we repent and are sorry that we have offended thee, we bewail our transgressions, beseeching that thou wilt graciously pity our misery. Have compassion on us, O most bounteous God and Father, and forgive us all our sins, for that holy passion of thy well beloved son Jesus Christ. Grant us also the grace of thy holy Spirit, that we may with all our hearts study to know our own unrighteousness, and sincerely abhor ourselves : that sin may be mortified in us, and we may be raised up to a new life ; that we may bring forth genuine fruits of holiness and righteousness, which through Jesus Christ are acceptable to thee. Give us to understand thy holy word according to thy divine will, that we may learn thereby to put our whole trust in thee alone, and withdraw it from all creatures. That also our old man, with all the affections thereof, may be daily more and more crucified, and that we may offer up ourselves unto thee a living sacrifice, to the glory of thy holy name, and to the editication of our neighbours; through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who hath taught and commanded us to pray---Our FATHER, &c.
A prayer after sermon in the week. L
for we have divers ways sinned against thee, since we are not obedient to thy holy word, as we ought to be, and through ignorance and murmuring daily stir up thine anger against us: wherefore thou dost justly punish us : but, O Lord, be inindful of thy great mercy, and have compassion on us. Give us knowledge of, and repentance for our sins, and amendment of our lives; strengthen the ministers of thy church, that they may faithfully and stedfastly declare thy holy word ; and thi magistrates of thy people, that they may bear the sword with equity and prudence; preserve us from all de
ceit and unsaithfulness; confound all evil, and subtle counsels taken against thy word and church. O Lord withhold not from us thy spirit and word, but grant us increase of faith; and in all trouble and adversity, patience and constancy. Assist thy church, deliver her from all affliction, derision and persecution. Strengthen also the weak and sorrowful of heart, and send us thy peace, through Jesus Christ our Lord, who hath given us this sure promise : verily, verily, I say unto you, whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he will give it you ; and hath commanded us to pray-Our Fath
A morning prayer.
watched over us the night past, and we beseech thee to strengthen, and henceforth guide us by thy holy Spirit, that we may spend this, and all the days of our lives in all righteousness and holiness, and that whatsoever we undertake, we may always aim at the promoting of thy glory, and expect all the success of our undertakings from thy bountiful hapd alone: and to the end that we may obtain this mercy of thee, he pleased (according to thy promise) to forgive all our sins, through the holy passion and blood-shedding of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, for we heartily repent of them. Enlighten also our hearts, that we, having cast off all works of darkness, may as children of light
walk in a new life in all godliness. Bless also the preaching of thy gospel. Destroy all works of the devil. Strengthen all ministers of the gospel, and magistrates of thy people. Comfort all those who are persecuted and afflicted in mind, through Jesus Christ thy beloved Son, who hath promised us, that thou wilt certainly give us, whatsoever we shall ask in his name, and therefore hath commanded us to pray-Our Father. &c.
An evening Prayer.
pointed the night for rest, and the day for labour; we beseech thee, grant that our bodies may rest in peace and quietness, that afterwards they may be able to endure the labour they must bear. Temper our sleep, that it be not disorderly, that we may remain spotless both in body and soul, nay, that our sleep itself may be to thy glory. Enlighten the eyes of our understanding, that we may not sleep in death; but always look for deliverance from this misery. Defend us against all assaults of the devil, and take us into thy holy protection. And although we have pot passed this day, without having greatly sioned against thee, we beseech thee to hide our sips with thy mercy as thou hidest all things on earth with the darkness of the night, that we therefore may not be cast out from thy presence. Relieve and comfort all those, who are afflicted or distressed in mind, body or estate, through Jesus Christ our Lord, who hath taught us to pray-Our FATHER, &c.
A prayer at the opening of the Consistory.
thy infinite wisdom and goodness to gather a church to thyself out of all pations upon the face of the earth, by the preaching of the holy gospel, and to govern the same by the service of men. Thou hast also graciously called us up to this office, aud commanded us to take heed unto ourselves and unto the flock, which Christ halh bought with his precious blood.--Since we are at this present assembled in thy holy name, after the example of the apostolic churches, to cousuit, as our office requires, about these things which inay come before us, for the sellist and editication of thy churches, for which we acknowledge ourselves to be unit and incapable, as we are by nature unable of ourselves to think any good much less to put it in practice : therefore, we beseech thee, O faitliul God and Father, that thou wilt be pleased tók present with it icly it according to thy promise, in the midst
of our present assembly, to guide us in all truth. Remove from us all misapprehensions and unbecoming desires of the flesh, and grant that thy holy word may be the only rule and guide of all our consultations, that they may tend to the glory of thy name, and to the edification of thy church, and to the discharge of our own consciences, through Jesus Christ thy Son, who with thee and the Holy Ghost, the only true God, is eternally to be praised and magnified. Amen.
A prayer at the close of the Consistory. O
bast heen pleased to gather a church to thyself in this part of the world, and to use our service therein, granting us the privilege, that we may freely and without hindrance preach thy holy gospel, and exercise all the duties of godliness : moreover we thank thee, that thou now hast been present with thy holy spirit in the midst of this our assembly, directing our determinations according to try will, uniting our hearts in mutual peace and concord. We beseech thee, O faithful God and Father, that thou wilt graciously be pleased to bless our intended labour, and effectually to execute thy began work : always gathering unto thyself a true church, and preserving the same in the pure doctrine, and in the right use of thy holy. sacraments, and in a diligent exercise of discipline. On the contrary, de stroy all evil and crafty councils, which are devised against thy word and church. . Strengthen also all the ministers of thy church, that they may faithfully and stedfastly declare thy holy word : and the magistrates of thy people, that they may bear the sword with righteousness and discretion. Particularly we pray for those, whom thou hast been pleased to put in authority over us, both those of higher and lower dignity, and especially for the worshipful magistrates of this city. Grant that their whole gorernment may be thus directed, that the King of all kings may rule over them and their fellow-citizens, and that the kingdom of the devil (which is a kingdom of scandal and reproach) may, daily, more and more be de stroyed and brought to nought hy them as thy servants, and that we may lead with thein a quiet and peaceable life, in all godliness and honesty, Hear us, O God and Father, through Jesus Christ thy beloved Son, who with thee and the Holy Ghost, the only and true God, is eternally to be magnified and praised. Amen.
A prayer at the meeting of the Deacons.
that we should always have the poor with us, but hast also commanded that they should be assisted, and for that end bast ordained the service of deacons in thy church, by whom they might be relieved. As we, who are called to the office of deacons in this congregation, are here at present met in thy name, to consult together concerning our ministry, therefore me humbly beseech thee for the sake of Jesus Christ, that thou wilt be pleased to endue us with the spirit of discretion, to the end that we may rightly discern, who are really poor, and who are not : and that we may with all cheerfulness and fidelity, distribute the alms collected by us to every one according to his necessity, not leaving the indigent members of thy beloved Son comfortless, neither giving to those who are not in want. Kindle within the hearts of men an ardent love towards the poor, that they may liberally give of their temporal goods, of which thou hast made them stewards : and that we, baving the means in hand to assist the indigent, may faithfully, without vexation, and with a free heart, perform our office Grant us also the talents, not only to comfort the miserable with the external gift, but also with the holy word. And since man doth not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of thy mouth, be pleased therefore to extend thy blessing over our distributions,
and increase the bread of the poor, that both we and they may bave reason to praise and thank thee : expecting the blessed coming of thy beloved Son Jesus Christ, who became poor for our sakes, to make us rich in eternity. Amen.
Grace before meat. Psalm cxlv. 15, 16.—“The eyes of all wait upon thee, and thou givest them their meat in due season. Thou openest thine hand, and satisfiest the desire of every living thing."
maintain and govern them by thy divine power, and didst feed thy people Israel in the wilderness, bless us thy poor servants, and sanctify these thy gifts, which we receive from thy bountiful goodness, that we may temperately and holily use them according to thy will, and thereby acknowledge that thou art our Father and the fountain of all good. Grant also that we way at all times and above all things seek for that spiritual bread of thy word, with which our souls are fed to life eternal, which thou hast prepared for us by the holy blood of thy beloved Son Jesus Christ. Amen. OUR FATHER, &c.
Also our Lord Jesus Christ admonishes us : Luke xxi. 34, 35.--"And take beed to yourselves, lest at any time your bearts be over charged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares : for as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth."
Grace after meat. Thus speaketh the Lord, in the fifth book of Moses, chap. viii. 10, 11. * When thou hast eaten and art full, then thou shalt bless the Lord thy God, for the good land which he hath given thee. Beware that thou forget not the Lord thy God, in not keeping his commandments and his judgments, and his statutes which I command thee this day."
which we without intermission receive from thy bountiful hand; we bless thy divine will, for preserving us in this mortal life, and for supplying all our wants; but especially for our regeneration unto the hope of a better life, which thou hast revealed unto us by the gospel. We beseech thee, merciful God and Father, not to suffer our hearts to be fixed on these earthly and corruptible things; but that we may always look up to heaven, expecting thence our Saviour Jesus Christ, until he appear in the clouds for our deliverance. Amen.-OUR FATHRR, &c.
A prayer for sick and tempted persons. O
art Lord of life and death, and without whose will, nothing is done in heaven, nor in earth, although we are not worthy to call upon thy name, nor to hope that thou wilt bear us, when we consider how we have hitherto employed our time; we beseech thee that thou will be pleased of thy mercy to look upon us in the face of Jesus Christ, who has taken all our infirmities on him. We acknowledge that we are utterly incapable of any good, and prone to all evil, wherefore we have justly merited this punishment, yea, have deserved much more. But Lord, thou knowest that we are thy people, and that thou art our God: we have no other refuge tlian to thy mercy, which thou never hast withheld from any one who turned himself to thee. Tlierefore we beseech thee not to inpute our sins unto us, but account the wisdom, righteousness and holiness of Jesus Christ to us, that we may in him be able to stand before thee. Deliver us for his sake from these sufferings, that the wicked may not think that thou hast forsaken us. And if it is thy pleasure longer thus to try us, give us strength and patience to bear all such ac
cording to thy will, and let it all turn according to thy wisdom to our prokt. Rather chastise us here, than hereafter, to be lost with the world. Grant that we may die to this world, and all earthly things, and that we may daily more and more be renewed after the image of Jesus Christ. Suffer us not to be separated by any means from thy love; but draw us daily nigher and nigher unto thee, that we may enter upon the end of our calling with joy, that is, may die, rise again, and live with Christ in eternity. We also believe that thou wilt hear us through Jesus Christ, who hath taught us to pray--OUR FATHER, &c.
Strengthen us also in the true faith, which we believe in our hearts and prosess with our mouths.--] believe in God, &c.
Or thus : TERNAL merciful God and Father, the eternal salvation of the living in thy hand alone, and takest such care of us continually, that neither health nor sickness, vor any good or evil can befal us, nay, not a hair can fall from our head without thy will : and since thou dost order all things for the good of thy people, we hezeech thee, grant us the grace of thy holy spirit, to teach us rightly to acknowledge our misery, and patiently to hear thy chastenings, which we have deserved ten thousand times more severe. We know that they are not the evidences of thy wrath, but of thy fatherly love towards us, that we should not be condemned with the world.-O Lord increase our faith in thine infinite mercy, that we may be more and more united to Christ, as members to their spiritual head, to whom thou wilt make us conform in sufferings and in glory. Lighten the cross, so that our weakness may be able to bear it. We submit ourselves entirely to thy holy will, whether thou art pleased to continue our souls longer in these tabernacles, or take them into eternal life, since we belong to Christ, and therefore shall not perish. We would willingly leave this weak body in hopes of a blessed resurrection, when it shall be restored to us much more glorious. Grant us to experience the blessed comfort of the remission of sins, and of justification through Christ, that we by that shield may overcome all the assaults of satan. May his innocent blood wash away all the stain, and uncleanness of our sins, and his righteousness answer for our unrighteousness in thy last judgment. Arm w with faith and hope, that we may not be ashamed nor confounded by the terror of death; but when our bodily eyes are closing in darkness, may the eyes of our souls be directed towards thee; and when thou shalt have deprived us of the use of our tongues, may our hearts never cease to call upon thee. O Jord, we commit our souls into thy hands, forsake us not in our last extremity, and that only for the sake of Jesus Christ, who hath taught us to pras-> Oue FATHÈR, &c.