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* The day of the Lord is very terrible. Therefore now, saith the Lord, turn ye to me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning
? When ye fast, be not as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance; for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast: but thou, when thou fastest, anoint thy head, and wash thy face, that thou appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.
3 Is this such a fast as I have chosen, saith the Lord, for a man to bow down his head as a bulrush, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? Wilt thou call this a fast, and an acceptable day to the Lord ? Is not this the fast that I have chosen, to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke ? Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? When thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh? Then shalt thou call, and the Lord will answer.
* Blessed are they that mourn, for they shall be comforted.
PUBLIC ASSEMBLIES FOR DIVINE WORSHIP.
• When Jesus was taken up into heaven, the apostles taught the people publicly, showing by the Scriptures, that Jesus was Christ. They frequently assembled themselves with the Church, and taught
1 Joel ii. 11, 12.
3 Isa. Iviii. 5, 6, 7. 9. 4 Matt. v. 4.
5 Acts i. 11. Acts iv. 2. Acts Acts xviii. 28. Acts xi. 26. Phil. i. 14. Acts v. 42. 1 Cor. xiv. 3.
much people: They were bold to speak the word without fear; and they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ; speaking unto men to edification, and exhortation, and comfort.
And at first all that believed were together, continuing daily with one accord in the temple. Many of them afterwards were gathered together in the houses of some disciples, and they often resorted to such places where prayer was wont to be made. And when they were present before God, to hear all things commanded them of God; then did the Apostles speak unto them, and tell them what they ought to do.
? And they continued stedfastly in the Apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.
3 Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; and having an High Priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a true heart, in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. And let us consider one another, to provoke unto love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is.
God is greatly to be feared in the assembly of the saints, and to be had in reverence of all them that are about him; unto his habitation shall ye seek, and thither shall ye come, ye and your households.
1 acts. ii. 44. 46. Acts xii. 12. Acts xvi. 13. Acts x. 33, 34. Acts xvi. 13. Acts x. 6.
2 Acts ii. 42. 3 Heb. x. 19, 20,
· Gather the people together, men, and women, and children, that they may hear, and that they may learn and fear the Lord, and observe to do all the words of his law; and that their children, which have not known any thing, may hear and learn to fear the Lord their God, as long as they live.
? How shall men call on him, in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in him, of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear; but let us not, after our own lust, heap to ourselves teachers, having itching ears.
Let the Epistles of Paul, as also the other Scriptures, be read unto all the brethren.
* Let us go up to the house of God, and he will teach us of his
ways. 'I will go to the house of God, with the voice of joy and praise, with a multitude that keep holy day.
I will give thee thanks, O Lord, in the great congregation; I will praise thee among much people.
' Ye shall bring the sacrifice of praise into the house of the Lord; and there shall ye rehearse the righteous acts of the Lord. In his temple let every one speak of his glory.
Thus saith the Lord, my house shall be called a house of prayer for all people.
And they that have sinned against God, shall confess his name, and pray, and make supplication before him in his house.
1 Deut. xxxi. 12, 13.
2 Rom. x. 14. James i. 19. 2 Tim. iv. 3. 3 1 Thess. v. 27. 2 Pet. iii. 16.
4 Isa. ii. 3. 5 Psal. xlii. 4. 6 Psal. xxxv. 18.
7 Jer. xxxij. 11. Judges v. ll. Psal. xxix. 9.
8 Isa. lvi. 1. 7.
9 1 Kings
'I will pay my vows unto the Lord, in the presence of all his people; in the courts of the Lord's house.
? In the day when ye shall keep a feast to the Lord, ye shall have an holy convocation; and ye shall do no servile work therein.
* And on the day when ye proclaim a fast to afflict your souls, ye shall have an holy convocation; and ye shall do no work in that same day.
The words of the Lord shall be read in the ears of the people, in the Lord's house, upon the fasting day.
When the whole church is come together into one place, let all things be done decently, and in order ; and let all things be done to edifying: For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, in all churches of the saints.
• Wherefore let us walk unto the house of God in company, and seek him after the due order.
When ye come together into one place to eat the Lord's Supper, tarry one for another; and if any man hunger, let him eat at home, that ye come not together to condemnation. What! have ye not houses to eat and drink in? Or despise ye the church of God?
* Keep thy foot when thou goest to the house of God; and be more ready to hear than to give the sacrifice of fools : For they consider not that they do evil.
• If any man speak in an unknown tongue, let one interpret; but if there be no interpreter, let him
i Psal. cxvi. 18, 19.
2 Lev. xxiii. 7. 39. 7. xxiii. 27. Ezra viii. 21. Lev. xxiii. 27, 28.
4 Jer. xxxvi. 6. il Cor. xiv. 23. 40. 26. 33.
6 Psal. lv, 14. 1 Chron. xv. 13. 71 Cor. xi. 33. 20. 33, 34. 22.
8 Eccles. v. I.
keep silence in the church; and let him speak to himself and to God. Let
your women keep silence in the churches; for it is not permitted unto them to speak.
? When ye come together in the church ; take care that there be no divisions among you; lest you should come together, not for the better, but for the worse. For if any man seem to be contentious, we have no such custom, neither the churches of God. * Holiness becometh thine house, O Lord, for ever.
Thus spake the Lord, saying, I will be sanctified in them that come nigh me; and before all the people I will be glorified. Ye shall reverence my sanctuary.
* Unto the wicked, God saith, What hast thou to do to declare my statutes ? or that thou shouldst take my covenant into thy mouth ? And who hath required this at thy hand, to tread my courts, seeing thou hatest instruction, and castest my words behind thee?
• Will ye steal, murder, and commit adultery, and swear falsely, and come and stand before me in this house, which is called by my name? Is this house, which is called by my name, become a den of robbers in your eyes ? saith the Lord.
Make not my Father's house, (saith our Saviour) a house of merchandize.
Why is the house of God forsaken? . There shall be mockers in the last times, which shall walk after their own ungodly lusts : these be they who separate themselves, sensual, having not the Spirit.
11 Cor. xiv. 34.
2 1 Cor. xi. 18. 17. 16. 3 Psal. xciii. 5. 4 Lex. x. 3. Lev. xix. 30.
5 Psal. 1. 16. Isa. i. 12. Psal. 1. 17. 6 Jer. vii. 9, 10, 11.
7 John ii. 16.
8 Neh. xiii. 11.
9 Jude 18, 19.