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- 378

A Prayer to be used in Time of Temptation, - 381

A Prayer for a Person under Doubts of the Lawful.

ness of any Action,

384

A Thanksgiving for Deliverance from any Trouble

or Affliction, either of Body or Mind,

387

A Prayer upon any Festival that relates to our Sa-

viour,

389

A Prayer upon any Saint's Day,

393

A Prayer at our first Entrance into the Church, • 395

- ibid.

A Prayer at Church after the Service is ended,

A Prayer
400

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A Prayer for a holy and happy Death,

- 404

A devout Prayer that may be used at any Time, 406

A Prayer in formy and tempestuous Weather; as

great Thunder and Lightning,

409

A Prayer for Rain,

• 411

A Prayer for fair Weather,

- 413

A Prayer for a Prisoner for Debt,

414

Some Considerations proper for Prisoners for Crimes,

in order to their making their Peuce with God, as

well before, as after their Condemnation,

417

A Prayer that may be used with condemned Prisoners

by those who visit them,

421

Another Prayer that may be used with condemned

Prisoners,

AN INTRODUCTORY

DISCOURSE

CONCERNING

PRAYER.

THE

HE Reasonableness as well as Necesity

of frequent Prayer, is a Truih so well established among Christians, that 'tis hard to account how a Duty, attended with so many Advantages, should be so much negleEted as it is : One would be apt to think, that some Men, who

profefs to believe that God is, and that he is a Rewarder of them that diligently keek him, are not in earnest, since they are so negligent in paying him that Duty of Homage and Adoration, which even Nature itself, without the Help of Revelation, would teach them to be due from a Creature to his Creator.

It is indeed a melancholy Reflection, to think with what passionate Eagerness Men pursue their several Interests in this World, (when they know, that the Fashion of this World passétb away, and that all their Attainments must in a short Time have an End) and how cold and heartless they are in prosecuting that Happiness which is to last to all Eternity. No Pains, no Solicitations are thought too much for the one: but little, very little, is thought enough for the other! But if we will attend to the Reason and Nature of Things, and to the Voice of Jesus Christ in the Gospel, who came down from Heaven to conduct us in the way that leads thither, we shall soon alter our Sentiments and Opinions.

I do not say this is the Practice of all People; God be praised, there are many who make Religion the chief Business of their Lives; whose Devotions are as conftant and regular as the rising and setting of the Sun; and who, not content with offering up a daily Morning and Evening Sacrifice of Prayer and Praise to God, do (as Daniel did) pray Three times a Day; and besides, are continually sending up pious Ejaculations to Heaven; so that in the

strictest

ftri&teft Sense of the Apostle's Meaning, they may be said to pray without ceasing.

But alas! how many are there, whose Lives are the very reverse of all this; who seem to live without God in the World, and to own no Dependence on his Providence, nor to have any regard to a future Life; who feldom retire into their Closets, unless to form Projects and Designs of worldly Advantage, or to see how their Accounts stand in respect to the Affairs of this Life! How many Families are there, where the very Form and Appearance of Religion is almost lost! where Children and Servants, instead of being called to daily Prayers in the Family, have hardly the Example set them of retiring in private!

What Methods those that profess to be Christians, take to satisfy themselves in a constant Neglect of so plain and necessary a Duty, as that of Private and Family Prayer, I know not; but sure they have little Thought how they will be able to answer it at the Last Day, when they shall appear before the Judgment-seat of Christ, there to give an Account how they have observed the Precepts of Christianity, of which they cannot but know this is one, B 2

That

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