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O GOD, Thou art very great, Thou art clothed with honour and majesty; and it becomes us to approach Thee, with reverence and godly fear. We can also come before Thee, with humble confidence : for thy condescension equals thy grandeur, and thy goodness is thy glory.
If we are unworthy, we rejoice that we are not unwelcome. If we are guilty, Thou art gracious; if we are miserable, Thou art merciful; if we are all indigence, thy riches are unsearchable. By not sparing thine own Son, but delivering Him up for us all, Thou hast shown thy boundless compassion towards a perishing world; and proved, that with Him, Thou wilt also freely give us all things. Thus a foundation is laid for our hope; a refuge is opened for our safety; and a new and living way is consecrated into the holiest of all, for our approach to Thee.
O bless us with that conviction of sin, that brokena ness of heart, that self-despair, which will endear to us the gospel message, as a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation ; and induce us to say with the apostle, . That I may win Christ, and be found in Him; that I may know Him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death. How happy are they that are found inter
ested in Him! They are delivered from the wrath to come; they are justified from all things; they have peace with God; they are heirs of the glory that is to be revealed.
May we feel a boly and increasing concern, to know whether these exalted privileges are claimable by us. For this purpose, may we frequently and faithfully examine ourselves. May we search after--that deadness to the world, that love to the Saviour, that attachment to his house, that devotedness to his service, which characterize the subjects of his salvation.
And may these things not only be in us, but abound. It is an unspeakable blessing if we have life; but it is our duty and privilege to have it more abundantly. It becomes us to be thankful, if Thou hast began a good work in us; but we are allowed to pray, that Thou wilt perfect that which concerneth us. According to the riches of thy glory, therefore, strengthen us with might by thy Spirit in the inner man ; that Christ may dwell in our hearts by faith ; that we being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all saints, what is the height, and depth, and breadth, and length, and to know the love of Christ, that passeth knowledge, that we may be filled with all the fulness of God.
May every part of our character and conduct, be adapted to make, not only a serious, but an amiable impression, on the minds of those around us; that they may say, I will go with you, for I have heard that God is with you.
May all that we meet with in our passage through life, whether pleasing or painful, instead of injuring the prosperity of our souls, turn to our salvation, through prayer, and the continual supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ.
Send us help this day from the sanctuary, and strengthen us out of Zion. We know that thine own appointments, were never intended to make us independent of thy agency; without thy superadded blessing, the best means will prove in vain. But Thou hast said, In all places where I record my name, I will come unto thee, and I will bless thee. And all have found Thee to be faithful to thy word. We have known Thee in thy palaces for a refuge: we have seen thy power and thy glory in the sanctuary: and have often praised Thee with joyful lips.
We therefore bless Thee for the return of these precious advantages: we pity those who are denied them; sanctify their privations; and compensate the want of ordinances, by thy own presence and communications. Enter, as an instructer and comforter, all the abodes of sorrow. Be the father of the fatherless, and the husband of the widow. Guide those who are perplexed; guard those that are tempted; and let all that love Thee, be as the sun when he goeth forth in his strength. We ask it through the intercession of Him, who has taught us when we pray, to say, Our Father, &c.
O GOD, the heavens declare thy glory; the earth is full of thy riches; the universe is thy temple; thy presence fills immensity. It is thy pleasure to produce life, and to communicate happiness. From Thee we have derived all we are, and all we own; and in Thee we live, and move, and have our being continued. Thy good providence has determined the bounds of our habitation, and wisely administered all our affairs.
But above all, we bless Thee for the exceeding riches of thy grace, in thy kindness towards us, by Christ Jesus. Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift; and for the unclouded revelation of Him, in the word of truth. There we behold his person and character; his grace and glory. There we see Him, when rich, for our sakes, becoming poor; and dying that we may live : delivered for our offences, and raised again for our justification. May we deeply feel our need of this dispensation, in all its parts, and in all its influences : and with Peter exclaim, Lord, save I perish; and with the publican-God be merciful to me a sinner..
Convince us of the pollution of sin, as well as of its guilt, that we may not only have our fear excited, but our aversion : that with Job we may see, that we are vile; and abhor ourselves, repenting in dust and ashes. May we feel the necessity of renovation, as well as forgiveness, in order to our serving and enjoying Thee, in time and eternity. 0 Thou Holy God, who hast no fellowship with iniquity, subdue in us the love of sin ; create in us a clean heart; and renew in us a right spirit.
May we not be in the number of those who are always learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth ; but may our hearts be established with grace. May we never rest in a mere system of doctrine, however scriptural, that does not bring salvation, or teach us to deny ungodliness, and worldly lusts; and to live soberly, righteously, and godly, in the present world; looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God, and our Saviour Jesus Christ. May we live in the spirit; and may we walk in the spirit: and instead of relying on our own convictions and resolutions, may we be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.
In all our duties, conflicts, and trials, may his grace be sufficient for us. To Him who gives rest to the weary and heavy laden, may we repair in all our spiritual distresses, in all our outward troubles, and in all the dissatisfactions experienced in creature-enjoyments. From a world, where all is vanity and vexation of spirit, may we retreat to Him, who is full of grace and truth; a friend that loveth at all times; who is touched with the feeling of our infirmities; and who is able to do for us exceeding abundantly, above all we can ask or think.
Prepare us for our final hour, and for all the scenes through which we have to pass in the remainder of our pilgrimage. May we know how to be abased, and how to abound. May we learn in whatsoever state we are, therewith to be content. May we stand complete in all the will of God.
Do us good by all thy dispensations ; and especially sanctify to us all the means of grace. We bless Thee. that we have been favoured with another sabbath ; and have had opportunities of repairing to the sanctuary, to mingle our prayers and praises with the devotions of thy people, and to hear the words of eternal life. We grieve to think, that so much of the precious seed, sown by thy servants, should fall upon the way side ; so much upon stony places; and so much among thorns; and that so litile fruit is brought forth to perfection. May it appear, that we have not received the grace of God in vain : but that thy word in us, is like good seed sown in good ground, which springeth up and bringeth forth, in some an hundred fold, in some sixty, and in some thirty.
And suffer us not to confine our religion to extraordinary occasions; but help us to acknowledge Thee in all our ways. May we never limit our devotion to particular seasons ; but be in the fear of the Lord all the day long. May we be godly, not only on the sabbath, but in