Oldalképek
PDF
ePub

We would render our unfeigned thanksgiving to thee, O our God, as for all thy mercies and favours in general, so especially for the blessings vouchsafed us in the varied seasons of another annual period. Through its vicissitudes and numerous dangers thou hast safely conducted us. Seed-time and harvest, summer and winter, day and night have not failed, but have succeeded each other according to thine ordinance; for all things serve thee, and obey thy wise decree, thy most benevolent appointment. Bless the Lord, O our souls, and all that is within us bless his holy name; who redeemest our lives from destruction, and crownest us with lovingkindness and tender mercies. Bless the Lord, O our souls, and forget not all his benefits.

We earnestly pray, O heavenly Father, that this joyful season of ingathering of the fruits of the earth for the supply of our bodily wants, may cause our hearts to be filled with gladness and gratitude, and which shall be manifested by a cheerful and unreserved obedience to the Divine will. Accept, O Lord, the thank-offering which we here publicly and devoutly offer and present unto thee; and may the religious services of this festival occasion be sanctified to our spiritual improvement. May our hearts be filled with ardent gratitude, and supreme love to thee, the author and source of all our present enjoyments, and all our hopes and prospects of future good. May we worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness: come into his presence with thanksgiving, and show ourselves glad in him with psalms. May our supplications, prayers and intercessions, find access at thy gracious throne, and the lifting up of our hands be as the morning or evening sacrifice; an offering of a sweet-smelling savour. May the instructions which may be communicated from thy word and gospel, be as seed sown in good ground,

[ocr errors]

and bring forth in us much fruit, that thereby our Father in heaven may be glorified. Build us all up, we beseech thee, in the most holy faith; and may all our tempers and affections, and our whole lives bear ample testimony to the salutary nature, and the purifying influence of our Christian principles, and commend and adorn our holy profession. May the blessed effects and fruits of the gospel be diffused and multiplied more and more in the Christian community, and among all who name the name of Christ. Clothe the Christian ministry with salvation, that thy people may shout for joy. Roll on, we pray thee, most mighty God, in thine own time, the glorious era, when thy knowledge, the knowledge of the truth, as it is in Jesus, shall cover the earth: when all nations whom thou hast made shall come and worship before thee, and shall glorify thy name: when sin shall be finished, transgression be ended, and everlasting righteousness be brought in.

And now, O Lord, we would humbly and confidently resign ourselves, and all we have and are, to thy holy care and keeping; praying for an entire reconciliation to thy will in all the dispensations of thy providence for grace to help in every time of need; for wisdom to guide us in all the duties, and strength to support us in all the trials of life; and that thou wouldst finally bring us, with a ransomed world, to the full enjoyment of thyself in glory everlasting; when every creature in heaven and earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, shall unite in the long and loud thanksgiving anthem, saying, "Blessing and honour, and glory and power, be unto Him that sitteth on the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever." AMEN.

DEDICATION OF CHURCHES.

A proposed Form of Service for the Dedication of a House of Public Worship.

On the day appointed for the dedication, when the congregation have assembled, let the ministers present walk up the broad aisle, and standing round the altar facing the congregation, let the religious services be commenced by the reading of the 24th Psalm; the officiating minister, or one that may be appointed, reading the first verse, and the other ministers present, and as many of the congregation as may choose, reading the second verse by way of response, proceeding in this manner, verse by verse alternately, to the close of the portion, as follows:

Minister. The earth is the Lord's and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein. Response. For he hath founded it upon the seas, and established it upon the floods.

M. Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord? and who shall stand in his holy place?

R. He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully.

M. He shall receive the blessing from the Lord, and righteousness from the God of his salvation.

R. This is the generation of them that seek him: that seek thy face, O Jacob.

M. Lift up your heads, O ye gates; and be ye lift up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of glory shall come in.

R. Who is this King of glory? The Lord strong and mighty; the Lord mighty in battle.

M. Lift up your heads, O ye gates; even lift them up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of glory shall come in.

R. Who is this King of glory? The Lord of hosts, he is the King of glory.

[In like manner the following; selected from several psalms.] M. How amiable are thy tabernacles, O Lord of hosts.

R. My soul longeth, yea, even fainteth for the courts of the Lord, my heart and my flesh crieth out for the living God.

M. I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the Lord.

R. Our feet shall stand within thy gates, O Jerusalem.

M. For a day in thy courts is better than a thousand: I had rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness.

R. For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord will give grace and glory; and no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.

M. Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee.

R. Peace be within thy walls, and prosperity within thy palaces.

M. For my brethren and companions' sake, I will now say, Peace be within thee.

R. Because of the house of the Lord our God, I will seek thy good.

M. Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth.

R. The Lord hath done great things for us, whereof we are glad.

M. They that sow in tears, shall reap in joy.

R. He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.

M. Mercy and truth are met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other.

R. Truth shall spring out of the earth; and righteousness shall look down from heaven.

M. Arise, O God, judge the earth: for thou shalt

inherit all nations.

R. All nations whom thou hast made shall come and worship before thee, O Lord; and shall glorify thy name.

M. Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.

R. For the Lord is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.

M. Blessed be the Lord God of Israel from everlasting to everlasting: and let all the people say, AMEN.

R. AMEN: and AMEN.

Then a suitable hymn or anthem may be sung by the choir; during which the minister who is to perform the other parts of the devotional services, together with the one appointed to preach the sermon, and as many others as it may be thought expedient, may ascend the pulpit; and, the singing being ended, the officiating minister may read a suitable portion of the Holy Scriptures; say the 10th chapter of Hebrews, from the beginning to the 26th verse, followed by the 2d chapter of St. John's Gospel, from the 13th to the 18th verse, or any other portion that may be chosen.

The dedicatory prayer may then be offered, preceded by some appropriate remarks, which may in substance be like the following:

CHRISTIAN BRETHREN: We have assembled at this time and place for the purpose of publicly setting apart and devoting this house to the worship and service of the ONE LIVING AND TRUE GOD; whom we are taught to reverence and adore as the common Father, Benefactor and Saviour of all men. Not doubting therefore, that this religious and godly purpose is divinely approved; and earnestly desi

« ElőzőTovább »