« AnteriorContinuar »
even to take up his Cross, and to be his Disciples and fol lowers to the very death? To testify the love we bear unto, and the Communion we desire to hold with all the Chrif rians that are throughout the world? To exalt The Name of the Lord, and to speak his praises , who would give his Son for us, and who has condescended to a treaty of peace with us, and upon such easy terms to become friends with us, yea, reward us, and do great things for us? O how fweet is the remembrance of these Blesings ! how happy are we that He will not let us forget 'em! but with a con tinued kindness invites us again to this delightful implay, ment. We will go and give Him thanks for all his benefits
, and for this among the rest, that He has made us so often partakers of his blessed Body and Bloud, and now gives us a new opportunity to celebrate in this manner the memory of his Love. And Othat our hearts were lifted higher than ever, after so long acquaintance with Him, in admiration of his Grace, in Faith, in Love , in Joy , in Praise and thanksgiving, in trong and vehement Defires, and in cor. dial Resolutions to be his devout and faithful Difciples! O that the hearts of all Men elfe, who fhall approach his Table, may be disposed to the like zealand fervent affection to his Service ; and so many souls as there are then present , fo many living Sacrifices there may be to God; fo many Wills resign'd into his hands with ardent Love : what fo those holy Spirits, which th' Apostle tells us, were present in their Christian assemblies, may be invited to comeinto ours, and bcholding nothing but what is reverent, ferious, pure, and full of true devotion , they may be excited to rejoyce and praise God together with us, for our sincere affection 10 his Religion ; and they may make report among their heavenly Company above, that Chriftian piety is still remaining among us, and that we have made a greac increase and growth in it this Year, by our frequent Remembrance of the Lord Jesus; which may stir them up all to bless the great and glorious Name of our God, which is exalted above all bleffing
& praife. The LORD hash prepared his throne in the heavens : and his Kjagdom ruleth over all. Bless the LORD ye angels, Bless ye the EORD all ye his hosts. Bless the LORD, all his works in all places of his dominion : Bless the LORD, O my soul. Pf. 103. 19.40 2 2. Let us ftir up our felves to bless the Name of God our Father, who has not cast us our of
his fight, when we thtew off our obedience to Him, but. sent his Son to gather us again to Him; tò invite us by precious Promifts, to iodear Himself to us by shedding his heart-bloud for us, to open the gate of Paradise once more, and restore us to immortality; to inake us equal with the Angels, and rank us among the eldest fons of Glory. Let us go, and, if it be possible, excite a greater Love in our hearts toward Him than ever we felt before. Let us offer up our felves to Him with a stronger flame of Devotion; which may always burn and rise up higher and higher till it touch Heaven; and life us up thither where our Savior is, in the high and holy place, God blessed for ever. Amen.
S. 17. CHRISTMAS-DAY. WHAT amazing News is this? what an astonishing piece of Love! that the King of Kings, who needed nothing, and is able by his omnipotent word to command more creatures into being, (if He wanted any subjects) than we can think of while we live, should send a kind'Embaffage of peace to us vile worms, finful duft and afhes; to us, who were unworthy of a gracious look from Him, should we have belought his favor; to us that had highly affronted his Sovereign Authority and Sacred Laws, he has dispatch'dļa glorious Meflage, as if we were the greatest perfops, and fo many little Gods. And had it not been too great an honor for us to think of, it He had sent one of his meanelt fervants in the heavenly Court to visit us? or if He had bidden an illustri
ous Seraphim to come and comfort, and chear us by his bright i appearance, or one of the Cherubims to fly all over the Earth,
and make proclamation in our Ears, that the King of Heaven would be reconciled to his rebellious Subjects? would it not have filld the whole world with wonder, and made all Mankind stand at a gaze to see themfelves so highly favor’d?O what a grace then was it, that God should send his son, his only begotten Son, the Prince and Sovereigo Lord of all that heav. enly Hoft,upon this businefs of Reconciliation? This is that which astonishes not men only, 'but Angels themfelves, who proclaimed the birth of this Prince of Life with the loudest fhouts of joy, faping, Glory to God in the highest, and on earib peace, good will towards men. S. Luke 2. 14. Towards men do they say ? Lord, what are they that Thou shoul-it put this honor on them! what are the greatest and noblest men on
Earth? what is their excellency and worth, that fach addresses should be made unto 'em ? O let/us/ joyo our felves , as well as we are able , with those bright Morn. ing stars that fang for joy, when the fouudation of the new World was laid, and say, Glory be to th' eternal Majelty of Heaven and Earth, who possefles all things, and can suffer nothing; that He would deign to send to us his poor Subjects. Glory be to his Almighty Love, who fo loved the world that He gave his only begotten Son, that who. soever believeth in Him, Shonlı not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the warld; but ihai the world through Him might be saved. S. John 13. 16. 17. O bessed Jefus, how ardent, how power. ful was that love, which brought Thee down from the hear:nly icompany above to us here one arth?
into the lower parts of the earth. Eph. 4. 9. to be clothed with our. rags, to dwell in our mortal flesh, in the likness of finful flesh? Mighteft Thou not at least have been apparelld like the best of Men, and been found in the habit and fashion of the Noblest of us? but Thou wouldit also condescend to the form of a servant, that the most despicable of all Man. kind might never lufpect they should be despised by the King of Glory. O what an humble love was this, to us molt wretched Singers? whar heart can conceive th' in. finite force of it; how infinitely is it above all words? We do but declare we know little of it, if we are able to talk much about it. It is fit for our wonder and silent admira. tion; fos adoring thoughts, and devout extasies of Love. Only we will go, and declare in the Assemblies of his People these wonderful Works of the Lord; and publish his Goodness with the voice of Thanksgiving and Praise. Lord, what new Wonder is that which there we behold!chis Glorious Person murder'd by his Subjects; the 'new born Prince of the World, the Heir of all things caught, caff out', and sain, S. Mat. 21. 39. by those to whom he was fent to demand their obedience. O the miraculons wisdom of this Love! that He should be born. and come among us, to die for us! and take our flesh, that He might offer it on the Crois, and make peace and reconcilation by being fain, and thedding his Blnud! We will go and show forck his Death to Angels and Men : for this is the upshot of his Love, in that while we were yet finners, Chrit dled for us Rom.
S. 8. By this He has made an Atonement for us; by this He his obtained eternal Radamption for us; Heb. 2. 12. with this Offering God is well pleard and satisfied; and by this Hc his exalted our Nature to the right hand of God, thae He may alwaies appear in his presence for us. With what love, and joy, and zeal shou'd we commemorate this never to be forgotten Love! with what hearty affection should we offer our selves to Him! how glad skou'd we be of this new opportunity to vow Him our obedience ! with what tender love shou'd we imbrace all our Brethren , who are flesh of our flesh, and bone of our bope, as He is ! and how confortably may we hope that God will be gracious to us, who has not only sent his son to make his abode. among us, but also to lay down hislife for us! Let us go and bless his Name, that to us a child is born , to us a Sox is given, 2fa.9.6. even Christ the Lord; that He hathraif. ed up an horn of salvation for w; that we shonld be saved from the hand of all that hate us. That we might serve Him without fear, in holiness and righteousness before Him, all the days our life. S. Luke 1. 69, 71, 74, 75. And let us receive these earnests and pledges of his good' will as hopeful assu: rances that He will never end his love till He has convey'd us thither where Jesus is. But how shall we come there unless it be in those steps whereby He ascended from earth to heaven? We must go therefore and offer to Him hearts of flesh, to be moulded and framed into whit figure He. pleases; desire Him to form his own Image in us; to sub. due us perfectly to his Will, that it may be our meat and drink to do it, and to finish the work He has for us in the world; think hear Him say, as Abimelech to the men of Sechem, to move them to elect him for their King: Gemember that I am your bone and your flesh. Fud. 9. 2. Beholl my Body which I took for your fakes; see here how dear you are to Me ; and how nearly related I stand to: every foul of you; Will you not suffer Me to rule over you? such a Lord as is so much concern'd for you? will you not bel govern'd by one that am your Brother, as well as your Lord?. And then, methinks , we shou'd all answer with one accord; Other Lords have reign'dover us, but now aone. but Thou; O Chrift, none but Thou; O Christ, Rule and reign oyer us for ever; for we are thy Servaats
S: 1. An Ejaculation before I rise, any day. PHEDENC me, O Lord, in allmy Doings, with thy molt gracious favor, and further we with thy continual help, that in all my works, begun, continued, and ended in Thee, I may glorify thy Holy Name, and finally by thy Mercy obtain everlasting Life, thro' Fesus Christ our Lord. Amen."
S. 2. IT is adviseable for me; if not fick nor weak, whole ly to Fast one intire Artificial Day in this Week, (for which Wednesday, Fryday, or Saturday seems to me most proper , Bes. cause onr Lord was Betraied on the first of these daies; Crucis. fied on the second; and in the state of his lowest Humiliation on the third:) or else in part - as in Chiro. . 1, and abstain from the full measure of my ordinary sleep, all Secular business, and all outward pleasures of sense : and much more from all Sinful and unliwful Thoughts, Words, and Deeds: T afflict my Boily, that ny soul may be the more humble); Punish niy Fle:h, for the gratifyiug of which most of my figs have been committed; Acknowledge my felt unworthy of my daily Bread; Watch and pray to be Ready when my Lord does come; Try and judge my self iu some place of privacy; Imploy all my Faculties to get an inward insight of sin, and sense of Misery; To fear God's wrath; Grieve for all my Sins, and confefs and forsake 'em; Forgive wrongs and my poor insolvent Debtors ; Give alms, if able, at least what I do, or might spare this Day in Dyet and 'ordiuary pocker Expences; and Desire Peace with God more than my common Foo; Befeeching Him to help me to prevenc his. Fudgment, by condemning my self. For curfed is he thu doth this work of the Lord deceiifully. fer.48.10.
$. 3 11 Argument for Receiting frequently : FROM the Pra&tice of the Primitive, Cluurch. The usage and practice of Christians in th' Apostles days was, at Jerusalem to Com. municate in this holy Sacrament fo often as they solemnly met together to Worship God, Act.2. 42,46. at Troas every