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An Office of HUMILIATION.
HE Design of this Office is, to furnish
the good Christian, who has set aside the Whole or any Part of a Day to humble himself before God for his Sins, with such Prayers as may be proper upon such Occafrons. In the Use of ihe Confessions, as indeed of almost all private Prayers, every one must supply or omit, as his Ćircumstances require; the Defign hereof being to provide only for the most ordinary IVants of a Chriftian on such Occasions. And as to his Use of more or fewer of these Prayers, he is left to his own Discretion, as Time and Opportunity may serve : But because the devout Christian will find himself disposed, especially after Retirement, and serious Recolle&tion, to render Thanks to Almighty God, for the many Mercies he has received at his Hands, and to intercede for others as well as himfelf; there is added a General Thanksgiving and Intercession, either of which may also be used at other Times, particularly in our Evening Retirement upon the Lord's Day.
After you have performed your ordinary. De
votions for the Day, you may use this Prayer before Examination.
Thou great Searcher of Hearts, who
feest and knowest all my Sins; help me so to search every Secret of my Heart, that I may leave no Sin, if possible, unrepented of. Give me Grace so impartially to judge and condemn myself, so humbly to repent and beg Pardon, that I may not be condemned, when I shall appear at thy Tribunal, in the great and terrible Day of the Lord Jesus,
But, alas! after the most strict Examination we can make, who can number his Iniquities? Who can tell how oft he offendeth ? Cleanse me, therefore, O Lord, I beseech thee, not only from my presumptuous and known Sins, but from all secret and unknown Transgressions, for his Sake, who died for Sinners, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Motives to Examination; together with some
Rules to be observed therein. HAving devoutly prayed for God's Af
sistance, doubt not but he will vouchsafe it you.
And the better to dispose your Heart to the Duty of Self-Examination ;
Consider seriously with yourself, “That “ it is appointed for all Men once to die, and
after Death to be called to Judgment. “ That God hath appointed a Day in which - he will judge the World in Righteousness
by Jesus Christ. At whose Coming, all " Men Mall rise again with their Bodies, “ and Mall give an Account of their own * Works : And they that have done Good,
Mall go into Life everlasting ; and they " that have done Evil, into everlasting Fire : “ For the Books shall be opened, and the “ Dead Mall be judged out of the Things “ written in those Books according to their “ Works. And then confider how much, “how nearly it concerns you to judge
yourself before that Time, that you be “ not judged, that is, condemned of the « Lord.
“ Since then you must give an Account fyourself, of all your Thoughts, Words,
“ and Actions; and be acquitted or con“ demned at the last Day, according as “ they have been conformable to the Law “ of God, or not; wich what Seriousness, “ with what Sincerity, and religious Awe,
ought you to set about this great Work? “So that by comparing your Life with the “ Law of God, you may perceive wherein you
have done amiss, and heartily repent “ of your Sins; and by the Grace of God, “ resolve to lead a new Life ; in all Things
conforming yourself to his holy Will " and Pleasure, and then you shall not be 6 condemned of the Lord.
Again. Consider with yourself, that “Now is the Time of Salvation: That by “ the Use of these Means of Grace, you
may get an Opportunity of reconciling
yourself to your offended God; of do“ing the Work you are sent to do; and of
making yourself capable of Salvation: “ which you know not how foon may be " taken from you. “ And that this Consideration
have “the better Effect upon you, imagine, “ yourself a while in the other World,
among separate and departed Spirits, “ whose Season and Opportunity of Action " is over; upon whom the Son of Grace, as well as natural Life, is gone down, " and that Night come, in which no Man
can work; who are either happy or mi6 ferable for ever.
“ Consider with yourself seriously the 66 Condition of these Spirits, what Thoughts « and Sentiments they have of Things, “ what they think of a sinful, and what
Sense they have of a holy and religious !Life; what inward Rejoicings and Rapos tures those have, who were so wise and
happy, as to apply themselves to Virtue * and Piety: And how do they now jus“ tify and approve their Conduct, blessing " and admiring the Grace and Goodness 66 of God. And what Anguilh, Rage, “ Self-Condemnation, and Regret, those “ return upon themselves, who lived and
indulged themselves in Sin and Wicked“ ness! How do they unwish all their past
Thoughts and Actions, their Designs and Undertakings, their Businesses and Employments, their Pleasures and their
Friendships, their vain Conversations, " and their merry Meetings, their Jests on
Religion, and upon good Men, yea, " and their very Beings too: I say how “ do they unwish all these Things : how pafsionately do they wish again for those 8