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Advice also may be given, as to beware of an ill-grounds" i all his sins, of hi Care also must be taken, that the sick person be not cast through the only “ diseases, sicknesses, death, and hell itself, are the propheta to prepa 552 The Directory for the Publick Worship of God. given us victory, is himself entered into glory to prepare place for his people: so that neither life nor death shall be able to separate them from God's love in Christ, in whom obtain a joyful and glorious resurrection to eternal life. ed persuasion on mercy, or on the goodness of his condition for heaven, so to disclaim all merit in himself, and to cast himself wholly upon God for mercy, in the sole merits and mediation of Jesus Christ, who hath engaged himself never to cast off them who in truth and sincerity come unto him. down into despair, by such a severe representation of the wrath of God due to him for his sins, as is not mollified by a sensible propounding of Christ and his merit for a door of hope to every penitent believer.

When the sick person is best composed, may be least disturbed, and other necessary offices about him least hindered, the minister, if desired, shall pray with him, and for him, to this effect:

“ Confessing and bewailing of sin original and actual; “ the miserable condition of all by nature, as being children “ of wrath, and under the curse ; acknowledging that all “ issues ; imploring for the “ sick person, through the blood of Christ ; beseeching that “ God would open his eyes, discover unto him his sins, “ cause him to see himself lost in himself, make known to “ him the cause why God smiteth him, reveal Jesus Christ $ to his soul for righteousness and life, give unto him his

Holy Spirit, to create and strengthen faith to lay hold

upon Christ, to work in him comfortable evidences of his “ love, to arm him against temptations, to take off his heart “ from the world, to sanctify his present visitation, to fur“nish him with patience and strength to bear it, and to give him perseverance in faith to the end.

That, if God shall please to add to his days, he would “ vouchsafe to bless and sanctify all means of his recovery; “ to remove the disease, renew his strength, and enable him “ to walk worthy of God, by a faithful remembrance, and




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“ diligent observing of such vows and promises of holiness " and obedience, as men are apt to make in times of sick.

ness, that he may glorify God in the remaining part of 65 his life.

“ And, if God have determined to finish his days by the present visitation, he may find such evidence of the pardon " of all his sins, of his interest in Christ, and eternal life by 6 Christ, as may cause his inward man to be renewed, while “his outward man decayeth; that he may behold death without fear, cast himself wholly upon Christ without

“ doubting, desire to be dissolved and to be with Christ, and į so receive the end of his faith, the salvation of his soul,

through the only merits and intercession of the Lord Jesus Christ, our alone Saviour and all-sufficient Redeemer.”

The minister shall admonish him also (as there shall be cause) to set his house in order, thereby to prevent incon:

veniencies; to take care for payment of his debts, and to Erleb make restitution or satisfaction where he hath done any

wrong; to be reconciled to those with whom he hath been 1.8 at variance, and fully to forgive all men their trespasses

against him, as he expects forgiveness at the hand of God. parole Lastly, The minister may improve the present occasion

to exhort those about the sick person to consider their own mortality, to return to the Lord, and make peace with him;

in health to prepare for sickness, death, and judgment; and or all the days of their appointed time so to wait until their

change come, that when Christ, who is our life, shall h" appear, they may appear with him in glory.

Concerning Burial of the Dead.
WHEN any person departeth this life, let the dead

body, upon the day of burial, be decently attended from the house to the place appointed for publick burial, past and there immediately interred, without any ceremony.

And because the customs of kneeling down, and praying by or towards the dead corpse, and other such usages, in the place where it lies before it be carried to burial, are superstitious; and for that praying, reading, and singing, both in going to and at the grave, have been grossly abused, are no

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deferences at the burial, suitable to the rank and condition our sins do deserv|| some extraordinary provocations notoriously deserved; as from the evils fe

inflicted upon a people, or apparently imminent, or by wisesand goodne also when some special blessing is to be sought and obtained, we blessings w publick solemn fasting (which is to continue the whole day) ping up of our is a duty that God expecteth from that nation or people. In all these, the food, (unless bodily weakness do manifestly disable from hold- and thorouglı pr ing out till the fast be ended, in which case somewhat may ad their peopl be taken, yet very sparingly, to support nature, when ready, thereby, especial to faint,) but also from all worldly labour, discourses, and need a day of thoughts, and from all bodily delights,and such like, (althouge Special choic at other times lawful,) rich apparel, ornaments, and such like, and of such tex during the fast; and much more from whatever is in the na- the hearers to gently and zealously to reprove, as at other times, so especially peormation

. Before the publick meeting, each family and person apart his own and t to such a solemn work, and to be early at the congregation whatex to be spent in publick reading and preaching of the word, to draw nea with singing of psalms, fit to quicken affections suitable to fully with 1 554 The Directory for the Publick Worship of God. way beneficial to the dead, and have proved many ways ha dut : but esp hurtful to the living; therefore let all such things be laid aside.

Howbeit, we judge it very convenient, that the Christian friends, which accompany the dead body to the place ap- oafect us thereby pointed for publick burial

, do apply themselves to meditar cukuoriedging his tions and conferences suitable to the occasion; and that specially to the e the minister, as upon other occasions, so at this time, if he soten and albase be present, inay put them in remembrance of their duty.

That this shall not extend to deny any civil respects or stiying God'srid of the party deceased, whiles he was living. Concerning Publick solemn Fasting.

, A religious fast requires total abstinence, not only from all ture or use scandalous and offensive, as gaudish attire

, lascivious habits and gestures, and other vanities of either sex; which we recommend to all ministers, in their places, at a respect of as there shall , are privately to use all religious care to prepare their hearts

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such a duty: but especially in prayer, to this or the like effect :

“Giving glory to the great Majesty of God, the Creator, “ Preserver, and supreme Ruler, of all the world, the better “ to affect us thereby with an holy reverence and awe of him; " acknowledging his manifold, great, and tender mercies,

especially to the church and nation, the more effectually " to soften and abase our hearts before him; humbly confessing of sins of all sorts, with their several aggravations;

justifying God's righteous judgments, as being far less than “our sins do deserve; yet humbly and earnestly imploring “ his mercy and grace for ourselves, the church and nation, “ for our king, and all in authority, and for all others for “whom we are bound to pray, (according as the present

exigent requireth,) with more special importunity and enlargement than at other times ; applying by faith the pro"mises and goodness of God for pardon, help, and deliverance “from the evils felt, feared, or deserved ; and for obtaining “the blessings which we need and expect; together with a

giving up of ourselves wholly and for ever unto the Lord.” In all these, the ministers, who are the mouths of the people nnto God, ought so to speak from their hearts, upon serious and thorough premeditation of them, that both themselves and their people may be much affected, and even melted thereby, especially with sorrow for their sins; that it


be indeed a day of deep humiliation and afflicting of the soul.

Special choice is to be made of such scriptures to be read, and of such texts for preaching, as may best work the hearts of the hearers to the special business of the day, and most dispose them to humiliation and repentance: insisting most on those particulars which each minister's observation and experience tells him are most conducing to the edification and reformation of that congregation to which he preacheth.

Before the close of the publick duties, the minister is, in his own and the people's names, to engage his and their hearts to be the Lord's, with professed purpose and resolution to reform whatever is amiss among them, and more particularly such sins as they have been more remarkably guilty of; and to draw near unto God, and to walk more closely and faithfully with him in new obedience, than ever before. A a 2


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themselves may more sensibly find that God hath smelt & The serumon ended of plagues, and in conferring of blessings, suitable to the ean thanksgiving i

Besides solemn and general fasts enjoined by authority, gher to give than we judge that, at other times, congregations may keep days wance and renewit of fasting, as divine Providence shall administer unto them and for sanctif special occasion; and also that families may do the same, And so, having sun so it be not on days wherein the congregation to which dismiss the con Concerning the Observation of Days of Publick Thanksgiving outomy or drunk time before, that the people may the better prepare them and sober;

The day being come, and the congregation (after private alebrate his p ship,) according to the particular occasion of their meeting love directed i

He is also to admonish the people, with all importunity, that the work of that day doth not end with the publick se or after the readil duties of it, but that they are so to improve the remainder kto the present bea of the day, and of their whole life, in reinforcing upon Then let the minis themselves and their families in private all those godly te eshortation and affections and resolutions which they professed in publick, parece to the presel as that they may be settled in their hearts for ever, sweet savour in Christ from their performances, and is des preaching is pacified towards them, by answers of grace, in pardoning sites of the Chu of sin, in removing of judgments

, in averting or preventing an they were omit| conditions and prayers of his

people, by Jesus Christ. they do belong is to meet for fasting, or other publick se some conven duties of worship. HEN

be let en withandes of it, and of the occasion thereof, some convenient preparations) being assembled, the minister is to begin with a word of exhortation, to stir up the people to the duty for which they are met, and with a short prayer for God's assistance and blessing, (as at other conventions for publick wor

of the obtained, or mercy received, or of whatever hath occasioned that assembling of the congregation, that all may

better understand it, or be minded of it, and more affected with it.

And, because singing of psalms is of all other the most proper ordinance for expressing of joy and thanksgiving, let some pertinent psalm or psalms be sung for that purpose, be


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