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to us out of thy word, may have a due effect and influence upon our hearts and lives : All which we humbly beg of thee for the sake of our Lord Jesus Christ, in whose holy name and words, ec.
A prayer, which (as the publisher conjectures) he . used before his composing his sermons.
Lord God of truth, I humbly beseech thee to U enlighten my mind by thy holy Spirit, that I may difcern the true way to eternal salvation; and to free me from all prejudice and passion, from every corrupt affection and interest that may either blind me or seduce me in my search after it.
Make me impartial in my inquiry after truth, and ready whenever it is discovered to me, to receive it in the love of it, to obey it from the heart, and to practise it in my life, and to continue stedfast in the profeflion of it to the end of my days.
I perfe&tly resign myself, O Lord, ro thy conduct and direction, in confidence that thy mercy and goodness is such, that thou wilt not suffer those who sincerely desire to know the truth and rely upon thy guidance, finally to miscarry.
And if in any thing which concerns the true wor: Thip and service of thee my God, and the everlasting happiness of my soul, I am in any error and mistake, I earnestly beg' of thee to convince me of it, and to lead me into the way of truth ; and to confirm and eftablish me in it daily more and more.
And I befeech thee, O Lord, always to preserve in me a great compassion and sincere charity towards those that are in error, and ignorance of thy truth ; beseeching thee to take pity on them, and to bring them to the knowledge of it, that they may be saa ved.
And because our blessed Saviour hath promised, that all that do his will shall know his doctrine : Grant, O Lord, that I may never knowingly offend thee in any thing, or neglect to do what I know to be thy will and my duty.. B b 2
Grand Grant, o heavenly Father, these my humble and hearty requests, for his fake, who is the way, the truth, and the life, my blessed Saviour and Redeem. er Jesus Christ. Amen. And in the first place, I desire to bless thy great and glorious name, that I was born of honest and religious parents, though of a low and obscure condition. Who am I, O Lord God, or what is my house, that thou haft brought me hitherto ? and haft regards ed me according to the estate of a man of high degreen O Lord God! ( 1 Chron. xvii. 16, 17.)
Prayers used by him the day before his confecration, W AY 30. 1691. the day before my confecration to
M the Archbishoprick, which was on Whitsunday, at St. Mary-le-bow, when, on Whitsunday eve, I resired to Edmonton, to spend that day in fasting and prayar, to implore the blessing of Almighty God upon that action, and the affiftance of his grace and Holy Spio :rit to be vouchsafed to his finful and unworthy fer
vant, whom his wife providence, and the importu. nate defire of their Majesties King William and Queen Mary, the best of Princes, (whom God, in great mere cy to a most finful and perverse people, hath by a most signal providence set upon the throne of these kinge doms, and fent (1 truit) to be our deliverers and be nefactors for many generations yet to come) have cala led to the government and conduct of this miserable distracted church, in a very difficult and dangerous
I began with a Mort prayer to Almighty God, to prepare my heart for the duty of this day, and to alift me in the discharge of it, in such a manner as might be acceptable in his fight, through Fefus Chrift my bleffed Saviour and Redeemer.'
I proceeded next to a thanksgiving to Almighty God for his mercy and goodness to me in the conduct of my whole life, from my first entrance into the world to this day, which was to this effect :
Almighty and eternal Lord God, and most mer. ciful Father, I prostrate myself before thee this day, in a inolt humble and thankful acknowledgment of thy great mercy and goodness vouchsafed to 'mé a sinful creature, and thy most un profitable servant, (nor worthy to be called thy son) in the conduct of my whole life, from my first coming into the world to this present day,
I bless thee likewise for all the happy circumftan. ces of my birth and education ; that I was born ina time and place wherein thy true religion was. preached and professed. I bless thee for the great care of my good parents to bring me up in the knowledge and fear of thee, the only true God, and of bimi whom thou hast fent, Jesus Christ, whom to know is eternal life ; and I bless thee, my Lord, for him in whom all the nations of the earth. are blessed, whoin in the fulness of time, thou wast pleased to send into the world to be the Saviour and Redeemner. of mankind.
I bless thee, that thou walt plealed to give my ever-honoured and good father the heart to give me, our of the small estate thou gavest him, so liberal an education, whereby I was put into a capacity to serve thee. Forgive, I beseech thee, O Lord, that I have made no, better use of the talents and opportunities wherewith. thou hast entrusted me, and accept of that litcle which by thy grace I have been enabled, sincerely to do for thee. I bless thee, a Lord, for the continual and bountiful support of thy providence, whereby thou hast also enabled me to return to my parents and their children the kindness I received froin them, and to be still as a father toi them. I bless thee, that thou hast so mercifully and fo many times preserved me from the great dangers : to which my life was exposed ; and from tempiations which would have been too hard for: me, it, thy grace. had not preyented them, and kept me from Falling into them : This; () Lord, I. acknowledge as one of the great blessings, of my life, for which I desire continually, to magnify thy great and glori.Qus, name, Bibş
I bless thee likewise, O Lord, for that measure of health which I have enjoyed, and for my recoo very from a great and dangerous sickness ; for any happy endowments of inind; for that degree of una derstanding which thou hast given me ; and for pre. serving it to me, when my dear mother, for so ma. ny years of her life, lost the use and enjoyment of it, and might have derived that unhappiness to me her child, if thy merciful goodness had not prevented it. Forgive me, O Lord, that I have made no beta ter use of the faculties which thou hast endued me withal, for thy glory, and the benefit and advantage of others.
Blessed be thy name, likewise, that thou hast in any time of my life, and in any measure, rendered me ureful to any good purpose. I acknowledge it ta, be all from thee; and I desire to return the praise of all to thee my great and constant benefactor.
Blessed be God for the favour thou hast given me with men both of low and high condition, and the friends which thou hast raised up for me, to pre.. ferve me from the malice of mine enemies, and those who hate me without cause, and not for any fault of mine toward them, O Lord thou knowelt.
More especially I bless thee for that great and un.. deserved favour which I have found in the eyes of our excellent King and Queen. Give me, O Lord, the heart, and, if it be thy will, the opportunity to ferve them in some measure to answer their favours. to me, and the opinion they have conceived of me, by rendering me useful and instrumental for the publick good of this distracted kingdom and church, in endeavouring to heal and reconcile our unhappy differences, and to reform the disorders that are in thy church, and the lives and manners both of the ministers and people,
Finally, í bless thee for all the favours and blef. sings of my life, both spiritual and temporal, so plentifully bestowed upon me ; and above all, for a fincere desire to serve and please thee, my most gracious and merciful God, and to do good to men, made after thine image.
: Accept, O Lord, this my hearty sacrifice of praise
I bow myself before thee, most holy and gracious Lord God, in a deep sense of mine own vileness and sinfulness, which render me altogether unworthy of the least of those many favours and blessings wherea. with thou hast been pleased to follow me all the days of my life. I am a sinful man, O Lord, and not worthy to lift up mine eyes to thee my God.. My whole life hath been little else but a continued course of disobedience, of unthankfulness, and un.. worthy returns to thee for all thy benefits. I have gone astray from the womb, and have grievously transa gressed thy holy laws and commandments, in thought, word, and deed.
I desire now to confess my sins to thee, and with great shame and contrition to bewail and lament them in thy presence. Father, I have finned against heaven, and before thee, and am no more worthy to, be called thy son, so that if thou be strict to mark in iquity, o Lord! who can stand ? Lord, 'I am vile, what shall I answer thee ? I abhor myself, and res pent in dust and ashes. - I confess the folly of my childhood, and the great fins and vanities of my youth, and the many great provocations, which in the course of my life I have been often, too often guilty of ; the impurities of my heart, and the many evil actions of my life, which thou, O Lord, knowest altogether; and for which I desire to take shame to myself, and to be confounded before thee at the remembrance of them. Lord, they are all in thy sight, and the most secret fans of my life in the light of thy countenance. I: am ashamed, O my God, and blush to lift up mine : eyes to thee my Godo.