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With humble confidence then, O Lord! I lift up my soul unto thee, beseeching thee, in thy great mercy, to look upon me, and to ease me of the burthen of my corruptand finfulinclinations: Oh!cast me not awayfrom thypresence, but, for the sake of my dear redeemer, receive me graciously to thy mercy; and let the meritof his bitter death and passion atone for all the folliesand miscarriages of my life past, forgive, I meekly beseech thee, whatever Í have done amiss this day and all my life past, either againk thee, my neighbour, or myself
. Oh! what am I, that I should presume to speak unto thee, or to lift up mine eyes, to that placeofpuritywherethinebonourdwellet h.*Oh! cleanse me from all my secret and unknown transgressions: And, most merciful father, who upholdest all things by the power of thy word, + grant that I may seriously consider and reflect upon the foulness and deformity of my fin, and what dreadful threatnings thou hast denounced against it; that may become a true and sincere mourner for my past fins; and, as farasis poflible, redeem my mispent time, by employing the remainder of my days in thy service and to thy glory. O Lord! give me a new heart, new affections, and new desires,
that + Heb. i. 3.
* Psalm xxvi. 8.
that I may love thee with more sincerity and serve thee with greater faithfulness, than I have ever yet done; convince me of the vanity and uncertainty of all things here below; and grant that I may make thee, who art the Creator of heaven and earth and of all things therein, my only joy and my delight, my stayand my trust, my guide and my counsellor ; and be so de lighted with the ways of thy commandments, that one day in thy service may be dearer, than a thousand spent in vanity and folly.
Grant that in the days of health and prosperity I may consider iny latter end, and remember and provide for that great account, which I must one day give before the judgment-seat of Christ; that, when the hour of my departure shall come, I may meet death without fear and amazement, and with a well-grounded hope of thy mercy and goodness, (tendered to me in this holy facrament) :1 I may chearfully refign up my soul into thy hands; and may be willing, and even,
desirous, to leave this world, when thou, my God, shalt please in thy gracious goodness to call me hence unto thy glory.
Take me and all* that belongs to me this night under the care to pray for.
those you intend and protection of thy good p ovidence ; prePART II.
* Here mention
serve us from all perils and dangers, and all apprehensions or dread of any; give us such refreshing reft and sleep, as may fit us for the duties of the day following; and, if thou art pleased to add another day to our lives, grant that we make a right use and improvement of it, to thy glory and the benefit of our immortal fouls, thro' Jesus Christ our Lord, who, in compassion to our infirmities, hath taught us when we pray to say,
Our Father, &c.
The Meditation on Tuesday Morning. Upon the manner of preparing ourselves to receive
the holy sacrament. If thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath aught against thee; leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way, firft be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gifi. Mait. V. 23, 27.
Onsider, O my soul, that this necessary
knowledge, when it is once attained, and which may be compassed without great difficulty, is a standing qualification for all our future communions: and as for all other pious dispositions of mind, which make us fit guests at the Lord's table, they are the same weareobliged to by our baptismal vow, and are necessary in the course of a christian life, and in the use
of all other means of grace ; for except we confess our sins with an humble, penitent, and obedient heart, and are ready to forgive those that have offended us, and ask with faith, even our prayers and praises will find no acceptance at the throne of
grace, 2. Let me then tell thee: the best preparation for the facrament is a constant endea. vour to live as becomes a christian ; (and thus thou hast made a good beginning in the course of thy last week's preparation] for, they, who really believe the christian religion, and fincerely govern their lives by the doctrines and precepts of the gospel, have all that substantial preparation that qualifies men to partake of this holy ordinancé ; and ought to receive it, at any time when there is an opportunity, tho' they were not beforehand acquainted with it, as thou haft been particularly instructed in the former part of this treatise.
3. None can suppose that they must be perfex and strong grown christians before they partake of these divine mysteries; 'tis enough we sincerely desire to be such, and if so, we shall find the frequent use of the boly communion to bethe most effectualmeans to that end. Where should we seek for comfort in this vale of tears,
but from the source of all joy and comfort; where shall we find strength to refist the temptations that crowd about us, but in this divine armour ? when we are loaded with so many imperfections, and sometimes, by neg. ligence or surprize, fall a prey to the teinpter; what so proper to wash away our sins, as that precious inestimable blood, which was Thed for our salvation ? therefore the very sense of our unworthiness, if rightly applied, Thould quicken our zeal in approaching the Lord's table frequently, as the best means to make us better.
4. Indeed, when we have a foresght of our communicating, it is very adviseable we should trim our lamps ; * examine the state of our minds ; renew our repentance ; exercise our charity ; enlarge our devotions ; spiritualize our affections; and, in order to this
purpose, should retire from business and pleasure; that by prayer, fasting, and alms-deeds, our minds
be raised to relish fpiritual enjoy: ments.
5. On the contrary: the living in the conftant habitual practice of any known sin without repentance, will make our approach to the holy table a mocking of God, a great contempt
of * Matt. xxv. 7.