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God's glorious Name, and wonderful Works, we are employed like the Angels in Heaven, and, by these heaveniy Exercises, are qualifying 'ourselves to join with those blessed Spirits in their eternal Hallekjabs; and at the same Time .fitting ourselves for the several Duties of this Life. When we address ourselves to God as the Possessor of all Perfections, the Fountain of all Good, the Author of all that Happiness that we have, or expect j as a Being in whom are all the Excellencies that we admire in this World, and from whom every thing that is amiable and attracting flow as so many Rivulets from his inexhaustible Fountain of Beauty and Goodness, as so many Emanations from his infinite Fulness j I say, a Habit of addressing ourselves to him under this pleasing and engaging, but awful, Character, cannot sail of working in us a settled Fear, and Love, and Gratitude. We shall fear him, because he is dreadful, even in his most amiable Perfections, because they are infinite; we must love him, not only because he is the most amiable Being, but because he exercises all his Perfections for the Good of his Creatures j and our Hearts must be tenderly affected with the Sense of his communicating to us all the Good and Happiness that we enjoy. This triple Cord of Fear, Love, and Gratitude, will bind us to an Imitation of his Nature, and Obedience to his .Commands. This constant Intercourse with God in Prayer will imprint upon our Minds an . habitual Sense of his Presence, which must needs have an Influence upon every Part of our Behaviour > Vlour; be a perpetual Check upon us; keep this Conscience always awake, and tender; jt: will fix in us such a thorough Belief of God's goverit? ing Providence, as will greatly help to preserve an Evenness and Composure of Temper; it wHl correct any unbecoming Levity of Mind, arfd all intemperate Mirth; it will spiritualize the Thoughts and Inclinations of the Carnal and {Sen* sual; cure the Worldly-minded of their Ambition and Avarice; it will humble-, the Proud, and make the Vain more Modest: For, can a Man. be proud, and Vain, who: daily appears before his Judge in the Capacity of a Sinner that has . forfeited his Life! Before Yiis (Oreafor, as a Beg* gar that constantly subsists upon his universal Bounty 1 Can a Man be elated on account of any personal Excellencies, who-daily acknowledges his own many Imperfections, and the infinite Perfections of That God to whom we owe every thing that is excellent in us! By daily Prayer a Man daily acknowledges that we are all, in the main, as Men, and as Christians, upon a Level; and can he overvalue himself, and disdainfully treat others, on account of some littles external Advantages that distinguish us as Mem* bers of civil Society! But, 1 shall inlarge upon some Particulars which will fully (hew, not only the great Advantage, but even the Necessity, of Prayer in ord?r to make us good Christians.

ljl, It is plain from the Holy Scriptures, and confess'd on all hands, that we ought to be teavenly-mindedto set our Affections on Things above, and not on Things ort the Earth. Now, F 2' this tHs :is utterly impossible for us to do, unless We" practise the Duty of Prayer: For," We find, by daily Experience, that, by reason of the great Corruption of otir Nature, the great Variety of sensual Objects, and the strong Impressions which such1 Objects make upon us, our Souls are groveling in the Dust; we are, in our Affections,, as it were, chained to the Earth % we seem so regard little else but temporal Things • accumuV bating Wealth, either upon the impertinent Scheme of hoarding it up, and making no Use of it, or upon a worse Motive, That of consuming it upon our Lusts; at best, providing a reputable Subsistence for our Families, Relations^ or Friends, without a due Attention to our owri, or7 others' eternal Welfare in the next Life. 1it is with the utmost Difficulty that ever we raise our Minds to Heaven, and force them to contemplate upon God, and the spiritual" Comforts of dwelling with him in Glory. No"sooner do we lift up our Hearts, but the dead Weight of Infirmities, and Sins, and earthly Concerns, presses us down again, so that we are quite averse to the sublime Joys of meditating upon the best Objects-. Now, this Unwillingness to think upon God, to separate ourselves from this present World, that we may with the greaser Freedom taste of the more resined Pleasures of Religion, cannot be cured but by the Exercise at Prayer; which,the more it is used, does the." more powerfully, and with the greater Ease, raise our Thoughts aloft, and carry them up beyond the Rubbish and Dross- of sensual Concerns; Our Converse with God by Prayer does by insensible Degrees, first, create, and then quicken in us an Appetite after immaterial, and immortal Pleasures; it kindles 'within us warm Desires after what is really noble, and good; and fills us with such an ardent Zeal for Objects of this kind, as will cause us heartily to love them, and eagerly to pursue them. Prayer is the very Food of our Souls, and supports them in their spiritual Life j it gives them Heat and Vigour in their Christian Course, and without it they are fluggish and inactive. This is evident to the most careless Observer of Mankind; they who neglect Prayer are negligent about every thing relating to another Lise. Tell them how they may acquire worldly Advantages; open to them a Prospect of getting Preferment; propose to them a Scheme of Amusement, and they will soon hear you; they are all Attention; their Desires are immediately upon the Wing; their Imaginations upon the Stretch, the whole Man all alive j but tell them of dying, and going into the other Worlds and you strike them to the Heart, they are in the utmost Confusion, their Spirits sink, their Countenance changes, they are in a manner dead: Their Souls are wholly possessed and actuated, by the good Things of this Life; They are their only Felicity, their only Principle of Life, and Action. But, such as converse with Gid by Prayer do thereby spiritualize their Souls; they refine their Appetites; they grow in Love with the Life to come; they truly relish every Thing lhat is subservient to that grand View; they

F 3 prepare prepare themselves, by Devotion, for the Imployment of Angels in Heaven; and begin, or, aj least, have a Foretaste of, their future Joys, in the- blasted Intercourse between God, and their own Souls. This is the Difference between a natural Man, and a spiritual Man j the natural Man delights in temporal Things, and his Love towards them increases perpetually, by his per-, pemal Acquaintance with them. But, the p' in* cipal Delight of the spiritual Man consists chiefly in spiritual Things. He hath quite different Principles and Appetites, and in the Exercise of his spiritual Faculties, his spiritual Life consists. Now, as the bodily Appetite", must cease unless supported with daily Food, so will the Appetites of the Soul be destroyed, and the Soul lose all Senle of spiritual Pleasure, unless, by the Exercise of Frayer, they be fed, and nouristt'd, and thereby preserved, in Vigour, and Activity; As an Intimacy with worldy and sensual Enjoyments inflames our Love for them, $nd. our Estrangement from them cools our Affections for them, (o. a frequent Conversation with. God by Prayer makes us take the more Delight in him j and our Absence from him, by quitting our Prayers, our leaving off, or discon^. tynuing, this friendly Intercourse with him, gradually creates a Strangeness, and cools our Affections; and we bse that Heavenly-mindednesst which is, our absolute Duty, and a necessary Qualification for our Employment and HappU ness among the blessed inhabitants above.

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