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according to a man's preparation, so will be his profit. Impenitence makes our prayers an abomination to the Lord; for to profess one's self sorry for one's sins, and resolved to forsake them, when there is no sense of the one, nor firm resolution to do the other, is the greatest affront imaginable to our Maker, by supposing either that he doth not know our hearts, or that he will be pleased, when we draw near to him with our lips, though our hearts are far from him: but yet this is our encouragement, that if the Lord sees a man set himself seriously to a preparation, he will bear with many failings, and so heal his people that they may keep the feast with gladness; a feast wherein thou, O Father, hast commanded us to commemorate that greatest instance of thy love to us, our redemption by the death of Jesus Christ, thy Son, our Lord.
Here observe the directions given on page 8, and more particularly endeavour to improve your soul by reading a lesson out of the NEW WHOLE DUTY OF MAN, Sunday 6.
The prayer on Tuesday evening for a worthy receiving of the most Holy Sacrament.
What reward shall I give unto the Lord for all the benefits that he hath done unto me; I will receive the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of the Lord. Psal. cxvi. 11, 12.
LESSED be thou, O my Lord, for ever blessed, for this instance of thy love to fallen mankind, in sending thine only begot
ten Son for our redemption, who are not worthy of the great and many mercies which thou hast showed unto us. Grant, O Lord, that this thy inexpressible love may not be lost upon me: but that, being sensible of my sad condition by nature, and my worse condition by my own wilful sins, I may be thoroughly convinced of the necessity and blessing of a Redeemer, and that I may, with a heart full of gratitude, join with thy faithful. church in giving our devoutest thanks to thee, and in keeping up the remembrance of what thy blessed Son has done and suffered for us.
Grant, O my God, that I may always receive that pledge of thy love, and the offers of pardon and grace, tendered to me in this holy ordinance, with a truly thankful heart, and in . remembrance of thee, my great and best benefactor; in remembrance of my Saviour's holy example of his bitter death and passion:
of his glorious resurrection and ascension. into heaven, and of his coming again to judge the world.
Give me, O my God, a steadfast faith in thy word and promises, and a firm trust in thy almighty power: and let the fear of thy justice and omniscience keep me from presumptuous sins, and a sense of thy goodness and mercy preserve me from despair. Defend me from all those snares, which destroy my love for thee; from worldly cares; from all sensual and sinful pleasures; from evil
company; from foolish diversions; and from every thing that may make me forget that thou alone art worthy to be feared and loved : grant me these mercies for thy Son Jesus Christ's sake, whose love and death I am now about commemorating. For,
O my God, I shall [on Sunday next] presume to come to thy holy table, not trusting in my own righteousness, but in thy manifold and great mercies. I am sensible that I am not worthy so much as to gather up the crumbs which fall from thy table. But thou art the same Lord, whose property is always to have mercy; grant me, therefore, gracious Lord, so to eat the flesh of thy dear Son Jesus Christ, and to drink his blood, that my sinful body may be made clean by his body, and my soul be washed through his most precious blood, and that I may evermore dwell in him, and he in me.
These, and whatever other mercies thou seest necessary for me, I entreat thou wilt. grant for the sake of the same, thy dearly beloved Son, Jesus Christ, my Lord and Saviour. Amen.
See the concluding prayer and blessing on pages 38 and 39.
THE MEDITATION: WEDNESDAY MORNING.*
On the resurrection, as a means to excite a due veneration for the Holy Sacrament.
Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. 1 Cor. v. 8.
COME now, my soul, and let us sing to our Lord a psalm of joy; sing praises to the God of our salvation; sing with a loud and cheerful voice; sing with a glad and thankful heart; say to the weak of spirit, be strong; say to the sorrowful, be of good comfort; tell all the world this soul-reviving truth, and may their hearts within them leap with joy to hear it. For,
2. The Lord of life is risen again, and hath clothed himself with immortal glory. He made the angels messengers of his victory, and vouchsafed even himself to bring us the joyful news. O my soul, adorn thyself with the garment of gladness, prepare thy most triumphant hymns to go forth to meet this great returning Conqueror.
3. His warfare is now accomplished, and he hath passed through the scorn and cruelty of men; the malice and rage of devils; the just, but severe anger of God; yea, the
↑ Here you may observe the directions given on page 3.
shadow of death, and the regions of eternal horror and after all this, thy surety is set at liberty; for he hath paid thy debts, and cancelled all those dismal bonds by which thou wert forfeited to eternal ruin. Blessed be he that cometh in the name of the Lord.
4. We receive thee, dearest Saviour, as born to us a second time, and this shall be thy birth-day also, the nativity of thy empire, thy restoration to a state of immortality. Thy former birth did show thee to be the Son of man, but this declares thee to be the Son of God; and now we know that thou our Redeemer livest, for thou hast told us, I am he that liveth, and was dead; and behold I am alive for evermore.
5. The ways of thy mercy are unsearchable, O thou wise contriver of all our happiness! and thy wisdom is infinite, who didst invent them to convince thy followers into this blest belief, and settle in their hearts a firm ground of hope; for, thou didst not only appear to the holy women in their return from the sepulchre, and openedst their eyes to know and adore thee; but thou didst purposely overtake, in their journey, two of thy disciples, that were discoursing of thee, and madest their hearts burn within them to hear thee. Thou didst condescend to eat before them, and invite them to touch thy sacred body. How didst thou sweetly invite the incredulous Thomas to thrust his hand into