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The child to be baptised, after notice given to the minister the dry before, is to be presented by the father, or (in ease of his necessary absence) by some christian friend in his place, professing his earnest desire that the child may be baptised.
Before baptism, the minister is to use some words of instruction, touching the institution, nature, use, and ends of this saerament: shewing, *
“That it is instituted by our Lord Jesus Christ; that it is a seal of the covenant of grace, of our ingrafting into Christ, and of our union with him, of remission of sins, regeneration, adoption, and life eternal. That the water in baptism representeth and signifieth, both the blood of Christ, which taketh away all guilt of sin, original and actual; and the sanctifying virtue of the spirit of Christ against the dominion of sin, and the corruption of our sinful nature: that baptising, or sprinkling and washing with water, signifieth the cleansing from sin by the blood, and for the merit of Christ, together with the mortifieation of sin, and rising from sin to newness oflife, by virtue of the death and resurrection of Christ: that the promise is made to believers and their seed; and that the seed and posterity of the faithful, born within the church, have by their birth, interest in the covenant, and right to the seal of it, and to the outward privileges of the church under the gospel, no less than the children of Abraham in the time of the Old Testament; the covenant of grace, for substance, being the same ; and the grace of God, and the consolation of believers, more plentiful than before: that the Son of God admitted little children into his presence, embracing and blessing them, saying, for of such is the kingdom of God: that children, by baptism, are solemnly received into the bosom of the visible church, distinguished from the world, and them that are without, and united with believers; and that all who are baptised in the name of Christ, do renounce, and by their baptism, are bound to fight against the devil, the world, and the flesh : that they are ehristiams, and foederally holy before baptism, and therefore are they baptised: that the inward grace and virtue of baptitm, is not tied to that very moment of time wherein it is administered, and that the fruit and power thereof reacheth to the whole course of our life; and that outward baptism is not so necessary, that through the want thereof the infant is in danger of damnation, or the parents guilty, if they do not contemn or neglect the ordinance of Christ, when and where it may be had.”
In these, or the like instructions, the minister is to use his own liberty and godly wisdom, as the ignorance or errors in the doctrine of baptism, and the edification of the people shall require.
He is also to admonish all that are present,
, “To look back to their baptism; to repent of their sins against their covenant with God; to stir up their faith; to improve and make
the right use of their baptism, and of the covenant sealed thereby be
twixt God and their souls.”
He is to eachort the Parent,
“To consider the great mercy of God to him and his child, to bring up the child in the knowledge of the grounds of the christian religion, and in the nurture and admonition of the Lord ; and to let him know the danger of God’s wrath to himself and child, if he be negligent; requiring his solemn promise for the performance of his duty.”
This being done, prayer is also to be joined with the word of instruction, for sanctifying the water to this spiritual use; and the minister is to pray to this or the like effect :
“That the Lord, who hath not left us as strangers without the covenant of promise, but called us to the privileges of his ordinances, would graciously vouchsafe to sanctify and bless his own ordinance of baptism at this time: that he would join the inward baptism of his spirit with the outward baptism of water; make this baptism to the infant a seal of adoption, remission of sin, regeneration, and eternal life, and all other promises of the covenant ; grace: that the child may be planted into the likeness of the death and resurrection of Christ; and that the body of sin being destroyed in him, he may serve God in newness of life all his days.”
Then the minister is to demand the name of the qhild, which being told him, he is to say, (calling the child by its name)
Ibaptise thee in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.
As he pronouneeth these words, he is to baptise the child with water; which, for the manner of doing it, is not only lawful but sufficient, and most expedient to be, by pouring or sprinkling of the water on the face of the child, without adding any other ceremony.
This done, he is to give thanks, and to pray, to this or the like purpose :
“Acknowledging with all thankfulness, that the Lord is true and faithful in keeping covenant and mercy; that he is good and gracious, not only in that he numbereth us among his saints, but is pleased also to bestow upon our ehildren this singular token and badge of his love in Christ: that, in his truth and special providence, he daily bringeth some into the bosom of his church, to be partakers of his inestimable benefits, purchased by the blood of his dear Son, for the continuance and increase of his church.
“And praying, that the Lord would still continue, and daily confirm more and more this his unspeakable favor: that he would receive the infant, now baptised, and solemnly entered into the household of faith, into his fatherly tuition and defence, and remember him with
the favor that he sheweth to his people: that, if he shall be taken out of this life in his infancy, the Lord, who is rich in merey, would be pleased to receive him up into glory ; and if he live, and attain the years of discretion, that the Lord would so teach him by his word and spirit, and make his baptism effectual to him, and so uphold him by his divine power and grace, that by faith he may prevail against the devil, the world, and the flesh, till in the end he obtain a full and final victory, and so be kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation, through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
Of the celebration of the Communion, or Sacrament of the Lord's Supper.
THE communion, or supper of the Lord, is frequently to be celebrated: but how often, may be considered, and determined by the ministers, and other church-governors of each congregation, as they shall find most convenient for the comfort and edification of the people committed to their charge. And when it shall be administered, we judge it convenient to be done after the morning sermon.
The is:norant and the scandalous are not fit to receive this sacrament of ific Lord’s supper.
Where this sacrament cannot with convenience be frequently administered, it is requisite that public warning be given the sabbathday before the administration thereof: and that either then, or ou some day of that week, something concerning that ordinance, and the due preparation thereunto, and participation thereof, be taught, that by the diligent use of all means sanctified of God to that end,
both in public and private, all may come better prepared to that heavenly feast.
When the day is come for administration, the minister, having ended his sermon and prayer, shall make a short exhortation.
“Expressing the inestimable benefit we have by this sacrament; together with the ends and use thereof: setting forth the great necessity of having our eomforts and strength renewed thereby, in this our pilgrimage and warfare: how necessary it is, that we come unto it with knowledge, faith, repentance, love, and with hungering and thirsting souls after Christ and his benefits: how great the danger to eat aud drink unworthily.
“Next, he is, in the name of Christ, on the one part, to warn all such as are ignorant, seandalous, profane, or that live in any sin or offence against their knowledge or conscience, that they presume not to eome to that holy table; shewing them that he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh judgment unto himself: and on the other part, he is in especial manner to invite and encourage all that labor under the sense of the burden of their sins, and fear of wrath, and desire to reach out unto a greater Progress in srace than yet they can attain unto, to come to the Lord's table; assuring them, in the same name, of ease, refreshing, and strength, to. their weak and wearied souls.”
After this exhortation, warning, and invitation, the table being before decently covered, and so conveniently placed that the eommunicants may orderly sit about it, or at it, the minister is to begin the action with sanctifying and blessing the elements of bread and wine set before him, (the bread in comely and convenient vessels, so prepared, that being broken by him, and given, it may be distributed amongst the communicants: the wine also in large cups;) having first in a few words shewed, that those elements, otherwise common, are now set apart and sanctified to this holy use, by the word of institution and prayer.
Let the words of institution be read out of the evangelists, or out of the first epistle of the apostle Paul to the Corinthians, chap. xi. verse 23. I have received of the Lord, &c. to the 27th verse, which the minister may, when he seeth requisite, explain and apply.
Let the prayer, thanksgiving, or blessing of the bread and wine, be to this effect:
“WITH humble and hearty acknowledgment of the greatness of our misery, from which neither man nor angel was able to deliver us, and of our great unworthiness of the least of all God's mercies; to give thanks to God for all his benefits, and especially for that great benefit of our redemption, the love of God the Father, the sufferings and merits of the Lord Jesus Christ the Son of God, by which we are delivered; and for all means of grace, the word, and sacraments; and for this sacrament in particular, by which Christ, and all his benefits, are applied and sealed up unto us, which, notwithstanding the denial of them unto others, are in great merey continued unto us, after so much and long abuse of them all.
“To profess, that there is no other name under heaven by which we can be saved, but the name of Jesus Christ, by whom alone we receive liberty and life, have access to the throne of grace, are admitted to eat and drink at his own table, and are sealed up by his spirit to an assurance of happiness and everlasting life.
“Earnestly to pray to God, the Father of all mercies, and God of all consolation, to vouchsafe his gracious presence, and the effectual working of his spirit in us, and so to sanctify these elements, both of bread and wine, and to bless his own ordinance, that we may receive, by faith, the body and blood of Jesus Christ crucified for us, and so to feed upon him, that he may be one with us, and we with him; that he may live in us, and we in him, and to him, who hath loved us, and given himself for us.”
All which he is to endeavor to perform with suitable affections, an
swerable to such an holy action, and to stir up the like in the people. 4.
The elements being now sanctified by the word and prayer, the minister, being at the table, is to take the bread in his hand, and say, in these expressions, (or other the like, used by Christ, or his apostle upon this occasion :)
“According to the holy institution, eommand and example of our blessed Savior Jesus Christ, I take this bread, and having given thanks, I break it, and give it unto you, (there the minister, who is also himself to communicate, is to break the bread, and give it to the communicants :) Take ye, eat ye ; this is the body of Christ which is broken for you; do this in remembrance of him.”
In like manner the minister is to take the cup, and say, in these expressions, (or other the like, used by Christ, or the apostle, upon the same occasion ;)
“According to the institution, command, and example of our Lord Jesus Christ, I take this cup, and give it unto you, (here he giveth it to the communicants). This cup is the JNew Testament in the blood of Christ, which is shed for the remission of the sins of many; drink ye all of it.”
After all have communicated, the minister may, in a few words, put them in mind,
“of the grace of God, in Jesus Christ, held forth in this sacrament; and exhorting them to walk worthy of it.”
The minister is to give solemn thanks to God,
“For his rich mercy, and invaluable goodness vouchsafed to them in that sacrament; and to intreat for pardon for the defects of the whole service, and for the gracious assistance of his good spirit, whereby they may be enabled to walk in the strength of that grace, as beconeth those who have received so great pledges of salvation.”
The collection for the poor is to so be ordered, that no part of the public worship be thereby hindered.
Of the Sanctification of the Lord's Day.
THE Lord's day ought to be so remembered before-hand, as that all worldly business of our ordinary callings may be so ordered, and so timely and seasonably laid aside, as they may not be impediments to the due sanctifying of the day when it comes.
The whole day is to be celebrated as holy to the Lord, both in public and private, as being the christian sabbath. To which end it is requisite, that there be a holy cessation, or resting all the day, from all unnecessary labors; and an abstaining, not only from all sports and pastimes, but also from all worldly words and thoughts.
That the diet on that day be so ordered, as that neither servants be nnnecessarily detained from the public worship of God, nor any other person hindered from the sanctifying that day.