Imatges de pàgina

tain of Grace, and Author of all Good, powerfully to affect their Confciences with à deep Senfe of their Guilt, and awful Ap prehenfion of the Vengeance they have deferved. Help them to confider, in this Time of their Adversity, all the Evil of their Ways, to reflect upon and call to mind all their past Offences.

Grant them true Contrition and Humiliation, and endue them with that godly Sorrow, which worketh Repentance unto Life never to be repented of. Help them to remember thy exceeding Patience and Long-fuffering, that they are hitherto spared, to the Intent they might have Space and Encouragement to repent of their Sins and amend their Lives: Whereas hadft thou been ftrict to mark their Iniquities, and fevere to punifh, they might have been ftruck dead in the Act of Sin, and plunged in a Moment into thofe dreadful Torments, which are prepared for the Devil and his Angels, and are appointed for un godly Men in the invifible World. Caufe them to admire this divine Goodness, and to mourn that they have so heinously abused it.


May they think not only of those par ticular Crimes, which brought them to this Place, and this fad Condition; but of all thofe Steps, which led them on to, and



prepared them for, this Ruin. And let their Spirits be humbled for that they have difhonoured the Lord their God, and abused themselves by Swearing and Curfing, Drunkennefs and Sabbath-breaking, and by the general Course of a sensual and wicked Life; that they have turned their Backs upon thy Worship and Service, giving themfelves up to Ungodliness and worldly Lufts. 71 For all thefe Things may they mourn and grieve with unfeigned Sorrow and penitential Tears, if peradventure the Lord will yet have Mercy upon them and grant, O Gracious God, that their Grief may not be so much for the Mifery they endure at prefent, and the fhameful Death they are thortly to fuffer, as for the Greatnefs of their Guilt, and the dangerous State of their precious Souls; may they be infinitely more concerned about the Soul that never dies, than about the frail corruptible Body.


Help them fincerely, and from the Heart; to forgive their Profecutors, and fuch as bore Witness against them; to be in perfect Charity with all Men, and not repine at the Inftruments, but own the Juftice of Heaven.

Enable them with due Patience and Submiffion, to endure what they have brought upon themselves, not complaining and murmuring,

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muring, but readily acknowledging, that while they are out of Hell, their Punishment is less than they have deserved.

May they not harden their Hearts, or endeavour either to conceal or leffen any Part of their Crimes, but readily and fully confefs the whole Truth. And if they all or either of them have been privy to any other Wickedness, which has hitherto been concealed, may they now evidence the Sincerity of their Repentance, by discovering any such Wickedness, and detecting their Companions therein. Thus we pray that their Repentance may be true and genuine, and fuch as fhall be accepted to eternal Salvation.

And fince, bleffed be thy Name, O God, thou art infinitely gracious and merciful, ready to receive the returning Prodigal, and to pardon the Sinner, which truly repents of and forfakes his Sins; we beseech thee, through the precious Blood, and complete Satisfaction of our Lord Jefus, to have Mercy upon, pardon and fave thefe poor Creatures. Great as their Sins are, yet thy Mercies, through the Merits of Chrift, are greater. In this bleffed Lord and Saviour help them to believe, who though he was himself holy, harmless, and undefiled, and feparate from Sinners, yet bled and died for us, and bore our Sins in his own Body on the Tree, that whosoever


whosoever believeth in him might not perish but have everlasting Life. Thus we beseech thee, O Heavenly Father, the bleffed Fountain of Mercy, to endue them with the neceffary Qualifications for, and then to grant them the full and free Pardon of all their Sins,

Help them alfo to confider the Shortnefs of their Time, and to lay to Heart their near Approaches to an eternal State and the invifible World: And grant that they may be exceeding ferious the little Time they have; and preparing with the utmost Diligence for their great Change.

Help them to be in continual Meditation on the Evil of Sin, and Excellency of Holinefs; the Purity of God, and their own Vilenefs; the Joys of Heaven, and Miseries of Hell: That fo in this Inch of Time there may be no Room left for one vain or wicked Thought to enter.

Awaken them to the Duty of fervent and earnest Prayer, that fo they who have hitherto lived without God in the World, and been Strangers at the Throne of Grace, may now with ftrong Cries and inceffant Importunity folicit Mercy and draw down Grace and Forgiveness to the Relief of their Souls.

Grant their Repentance and Faith to be


fuch, as, through the Merits of our dear Lord and Redeemer, fhall be accepted to their eternal Salvation. Work in them, we befeech thee, fuch an Abhorrence of Sin, fuch an Approbation and Love of Holiness, and fuch trong Refolutions of Obedience, were they again to be put to the Trial, as thou in thy great Wisdom and Mercy shall fee fit to approve; that fo their corrupt Nature being thoroughly changed, and they become new Creatures, may be capable of thy Favour, and the Bleffings of eternal Life.

Grant that they may meekly refign to thy Will, and not rebel against this awful Difpenfation of Providence, but quietly yield up themselves to Death, and be willing to fuffer what is appointed here, being careful and concerned about nothing else but to be delivered from eternal Condemnation, and to escape the Flames of Hell.

Have Mercy upon and comfort their unhappy Relations. And make the Execution of Juftice on these poor Creatures a Terror to others, that fo none may venture on the broad Way, which leadeth to Mifery and Deftruction.

Thus, O Lord, we humbly befeech thee that their Confinement and Sentence to this ntimely and ignominious Death may be a Benefit


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