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promised to penitent sinners through Christ shall be effectually made good to them, but also an assured persuasion, that if we come duly prepared to this Holy Sacrament the general promises of God in Scripture, concerning His pardoning Mercy and Grace, shall be immediately applied and made good to our persons in particular, p. 489, (with a prayer for such lively faith, p. 492.)
thankful remembrance of Christ's Death, and of the innumerable blessings which He has thereby purchased for us, and a resolution to express our thankfulness in following the blessed steps of His most holy life, p. 493, (with a prayer for these graces, p. 495.)
Sect. 3. Devotions immediately preparative, to be used on the morning of the Communion or any day of the preceding week, being an examination of ourselves with respect to our state of preparation for the Lord's Table, p. 497,-and prayer for all the holy dispositions that are necessary to make us worthy receivers of His holy Supper, p. 503.
Sect. 4. Devotions at the Lord's Table.
Prayers upon coming to the Table, p. 506, and at the Offertory, p. 507.
Communion Service, from the prayer for the Church Militant, to the consecration of the bread and wine, p. 508-517.
Prayers at and after the consecration, p. 518,
Prayers before and after receiving the bread, p. 520. with a thankful commemoration of Christ's sufferings, to be used whilst the bread is distributing to the other communicants, p. 523.
Prayer at and after receiving the cup, p. 525.
Larger form of prayer and thanksgiving, to be used after having communicated in both kinds, p. 526. Remainder of the Communion Service, p. 530-533. Short prayer after the Blessing, p. 533.
Sect. 5. Psalm and prayer to be used in private, after return home, p. 533.
APPENDIX, for the use of those who are any ways disabled from going to the Holy Communion, at the time of its public administration, p. 539.
END OF ANALYTICAL TABLE OF CONTENTS.
TO THOMAS LEWIS,
SOBERTON, IN HAMPSHIRE, ESQ.
I SHALL make no other apology for presuming to address this Volume to you, but that I could not hope to escape the imputation of ingratitude, should I have omitted so proper an occasion of making my publick acknowledgments to a person I have so great an esteem for, and from whom I have received so many particular favours.
It is your singular happiness to be endowed with a greatness of soul answerable to the greatness of your fortune. And as by the advantage of the one, you have it in your power to do much good; so the natural effect of the other is a constant study and delight to be ever employing and improving that inestimable talent.
The large sums you have expended in the augmentation of small benefices; the uncommon generosity of your annual contributions to several charity-schools; and the liberal exhibitions you have settled upon the grammar-school, (now under my direction,) which had the honour to be the place of your education, have endeared your name to the present age, and will transmit it with honour to succeeding generations; as being so many lasting monuments of your sincere piety towards God, your hearty affection to the Church and Clergy of England, your unbounded beneficence, and exemplary zeal for the propagating of religion, and the encouragement of useful learning.
It has been frequently objected against treatises of devotion, that those who are most eminently devout are not always the best Christians. But if there be any truth in this objection, it is manifestly owing to a wrong acceptation of the word devotion, and not to any essential defect in the thing itself. The generality
of the world, when they speak of a devout man, mean only one that makes it his business to attend constantly on all the external duties of religion; such as prayer, hearing the word, receiving the sacrament, &c. and indeed, if our devotion carries us no farther than this, it must be confessed we may be very devout,. and yet come very short of being good Christians. But then ought to be considered, that (if we will speak properly,) those who thus place their religion in external performances have no better title to true devotion, than they have to the spirit of Christianity. True devotion is to have our hearts entirely devoted to the love and service of God, so as to be readily disposed upon all occasions to submit our wills to His blessed will; fearing nothing so much as to displease Him, and rejoicing in nothing so much as in doing that which we know will be acceptable to Him. This is the true character of a devout man: and give me leave to say, there is no man that the character is more truly applicable to than yourself; nor would I desire a better argument to refute any objection, that can be raised against the power of devotion, than your example. An example, equally conspicuous for the greatest assiduity and seriousness in the exercise of those duties that are the appointed means of religion; and for a holy ardour and alacrity in the practice of those virtues that constitute the end of it.
It is the design of these Offices to persuade others to labour after the same heavenly temper of mind, and to assist their endeavours for the attainment of it. And this is a design so perfectly agreeable to your inclinations, that I cannot but hope it will, in some measure, entitle the performance to your favour: at least, prevail with you to excuse the liberty I take of subscribing myself, in so publick a manner,
Your most obliged,
most obedient servant,
Master of the School
the Church of Sarum.