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And because our highest satisfaction and joy spring from the right knowledge of thee, O thou Most Holy! and employment of our thoughts about thee, sanctify our dispositions by thy word and holy spirit, that we may have the happiness of enjoying thy gracious communications, and seeing thee at all times, and in all things; in all thy glorious works in the world around us, and in all thy dealings with us and all thy children of mankind ; that, when the day of adversity comes, we may look up with confidence to thee who art the refuge of the afflicted, and of all that trust in thee; and when our spirits are cheered by thy goodness, we may take delight in singings of praise and thanksgiving to thee, O benevolent parent, and most bountiful giver of all we have and all we hope for!
Finally, O God, we beseech thee to cause these religious exercises, in which we are engaged on this day of sacred leisure of thine appointment, to be serviceable to us ; that we may continually improve by the lessons of thy holy word laid before us, and that this our application to thee for greater degrees of wisdom and purity may proceed from such dis
positions as are approved by thee, and may, through thy mercy, be the means of procuring us all needful assistance to make us perfect in our degree, and to establish us before thee: that when we leave this world, in thy good appointed time, we may takers of the unspeakable happiness of thy chosen servants in the world to come, which thou hast promised us by Christ our Lord.
September 30, 1782.
JOHN xvii. 22.
And the glory wbich thou gavest me, I have given
them; that they may be one, even as we are
I present you here a part of our Saviour's prayer for himself and his apostles and followers before his death, in which it will appear that we are all interested and concerned : for he prefaces this part of it with saying; (ver. 20.) “ Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word.”
We have every reason to believe, and to be assured, that our Lord was most constant and assiduous in his more secret devotions, although concerning these we are wholly ignorant, however desirous we might have been to know in what strains of profoundest reVerence, mixed with humble confidence, he
who always did the things that pleased him, approached the great God and heavenly Father from whom he had received all his powers, and on whom he depended for life and happiness.
We shall be able to understand the better what our Lord here utters, by attending to his situation and circumstances, to which his prayer would correspond; as all right prayer and befitting application to God will always be suited to our present condition, to the truth of our case at the time, to what we really are, what we feel, desire, and want.
As the hour of his departure out of the world was now near at hand, when he was to lay down his life in confirmation of that divine truth which he had taught, by which, by their obedience to it, mankind were to be saved from sin and death and made happy for ever ;
He could not but be above measure solicitous, that his labours might not have been in vain : and as he had done his part, and finished the work which God had given him to do, that those that were to come after him might also fulfil their tasks, and his religion go on and prosper in the world. We observe this holy Saviour, therefore, at