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cardinal doctrine, and vitally important in the system of truth revealed in the Gospel.
Q. Do I consider the gospel entitled to all acceptation? and is it, in my vieu', a cardinal doctrine, that sinners are justified through faith in the vicarious sufferings and the atonement of Christ, and not on the ground of personal merit?
R. 18. I will consider the doctrine of the perseverance of the saints in faith and holiness unto the end of life, as clearly revealed in the Scriptures, and important to be believed; and that the belief of this doctrine is calculated to promote holiness and happiness in the children of God, and that, while it is they who persevere, it is God who enables them to do it.
Q. Do I confide in the sovereign and unchanging purposes of God? and am I working out my salvation with fear and trembling, while He worketh in me both to will and to do?
R. 19. I will contemplate upon the subject of death with solemnity, and remember my own constant exposure to his arrest, and strive to be in readiness for his approach, that I may welcome him at his coming, and find death to be disarmed of his terrours, and to be my everlasting gain.
Q. How do I view death? Am I trifling, or indifferent, or desperate, in relation to it? gloomy with apprehension, submissive through necessity, or tranquil with hope? Are eternal things so present to my faith and hope, that I can say with the apostle, “I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart and to be with Christ, which is far better?”
R. 20. I will view the soul of man as immortal, and rejoice that life and immortality are brought to light in the gospel, and regard the future existence, as infinitely surpassing the present, and consequently, infinitely more important, and infinitely more deserving my attention.
Q. Have I an immortal soul? Are the riches and pleasures of this world lost in the care of it? Does eternity engross my thoughts?
R. 21. I will view the doctrine of the resurrection, as vastly important in establishing the truth of Christianity, and, though it should appear non-essential to some, incredible to others, and mysterious to all; yet I will believe it because God has revealed it, and anticipate the time, when the bodies of all that have deceased shall be re-animated, and become united to their souls.
Q. Did Christ rise? and must I rise too? Shall I attain to the resurrection of the just? or shall I awako to shame and everlasting contempt?
R. 22. I will contemplate much upon the doctrine of a general judgment, when angels and men shall be assembled, adjudged, and receive righteous retribution for eternity; and will strive to be prepared for that most sublime, solemn, and momentous time, by living a life of universal godliness.
Q. Must I appear at the judgment seat of Christ? How can I stand before an assembled world, and the most secret thoughts of my heart be disclosed? If I look for such things, what manner of person ought I to be?
R. 23. I will rejoice and be grateful, that God has provided a heaven, a glorious and happy place for the righteous in the world to come; and will labour to be prepared for admittance into it, when I shall depart this life.
Q. Do I live the life of the righteous? and will my latter end be like his? Am I prepared for the holy services and enjoyments of heaven, and the blessed society of God, angels, and saints? or shall I be an outcast from the New Jerusalem?
R. 24. I will contemplate with horrour upon the misery of the finally impenitent, and adore the forbearance of God, which keeps me out of hell, and exert myself to avoid the awful doom, which awaits the ungodly.
Q. Have I duly considered the dreadful condemna-: tion of those, who persist in ungodliness to the end of life? Have I seriously contemplated upon the wide and endless separation, which erists between the righteous and the wicked in eternity? Do these considerations abide upon my mind, and affect my heart?
R. 25. I will admire the wise appointment of means for the accomplishment of ends, and will be thankful, that herein encouragement is afforded for the activity of man, while dependance on God is also inspired and secured.
Q. Am I happy in my dependance on God? and am I active in my duty towards Him and my fellow creatures?
R. 26. I will rejoice, that while it is my duty, it is also my privilege, to worship God in secret, private, and publick; and that I will endeavour to embrace
ce every favourable opportunity for the discharge of this duty, and for the enjoyment of this privilege, and labour to be accepted of God in it.
Q. Do I delight in the worship of God in all the ways He has required? Am I conscientious in the discharge of this duty? Do I remember, that He, whom I worship, knows my heart?
R. 27. I will rejoice, that God has consecrated one day in seven to His immediate service, and will esteem the Sabbath a delight, the holy of the Lord, honourable, and will honour Him, not doing my own ways, nor finding my own pleasure, nor speaking my own words, but devoting the day to religious services.
Q. Are there no ways, in which I profane the Sabbath? Is my heart grieved to witness the gross and frequent violations of this holy day? Are there no ways, in which I can make a better improvement of the day, or promote its better observance among others ?
R. 29. I will adore the riches of the grace of God, in establishing a Church upon the ruins of the apostacy, and in preserving it, even in the darkest If
times, and in promising, that it shall be preserved to the end of the world, and that it shall prosper, triumph, and fill the earth; and I will endeavour to be prepared for membership in the Church militant, and in the Church triumphant.
Q. Am I still connected with a revolted world? or am I a visible member of the Church of Christ? if I have a name to live, am I not spiritually dead? Do I rejoice in the future enlargement and final triumph of Christ's kingdom?
R. 29. I will regard with interest the wise appointment of baptism, and revolve much in my mind what is represented by it, even the sprinkling of the blood of Christ, and desire, that I may be washed from sin and pollution in the laver of spiritual regeneration.
Q. Have I been devoted to God in the holy ordinance of baptism? and do I still find myself the servant of Satan? "Have I received the external sign of purity, and its internal cleansing? Do I trust in the form of godliness without its power?
R. 30. I will be grateful for the institution of the Lord's Supper, which is designed to commemorate the sufferings and death of Christ for the sins of men, and that all true Christians may partake of it with approbation, delight, and profit.
Q. Am I duly regardful of the Lord's Supper? and if a member of the Church, do I devoutly commemorate the sufferings and death of Christ at His table, and receive in faith the symbols of His body and blood?
R. 31. I will contemplate upon the wise establishment of Church government and discipline, and rejoice that while the great Head of the Church is honoured in the observance of them, the Church as a body, and the individuals concerned as such, are also benefitted by them.
Q. Do I approve the laws and counsels of Christ? If a member of His Church, do I firmly maintain, and patiently submit to, its discipline?
R. 32. I will give glory to God, that He has purposed there shall be a season of millennial blessedness for the Church, and I will look for it, desire it, pray for it, and use all the means in my power to introduce it.
Q. Have I inquired diligently into the prophecies and promises, which relate to the spread of the Gospel, and the conversion of all nations? Do I trace with joy their gradual fulfilment? Do my prayers, and efforts, and sacrifices, correspond to my expectations and hopes?
R. 33. I will at all times consider myself as the creature of God, entirely dependant and accountable.
Q. Do I remember that, being the creature of God, He has an original and unalienable claim to my love, homage, and service? Do I render these to my great Creator?
R. 34. I will consider my corporeal and mental faculties, my time, earthly possessions and influence, as the property of God, loaned to me, and I will use them as not abusing them.
Q. Must I not condemn myself for the habitual violation of this resolution? Have not my idols been many? And have I not exulted in my powers and possessions?
R. 35. I will love God with all my heart, serve Him with all my powers, and glorify Him in all that I think, say, and do.
This is my plain duty, but have I ever performed it? Shall I not convert the resolution into a prayer; O God! fill my heart with thy love, and make me a voluntary instrument to glorify Thyself! R. 36. I will commence and close
every day with reading, and meditating upon the Holy Scriptures, and with secret prayer, and will be stated, uniform, and faithful in the discharge of these religious duties.
Q. Did I so commence this day? and shall I be careful so to close it?