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Tbe Gospel. St Matth. xi. 2.
Christ, he sent two of his disciples, and faid unco him, Art thou he that should come, or do we look for ano. ther? Jesus answered, and said unto them, Go and shew John again those things which ye do hear and see : The blind receive their fight, and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and th@pcor have the Gospel preached to them. And blessed is he whosoever shall not be offended in me. And as they departed, Jesus began to say unto the multitudes concerning John, What went ye out into the wilderness to fee? A reed snaken with the wind ? But what went ye out for to see? A man clothed in soft raiment ? behold, they thar wear foto clothing are in kings houses. But what went ye out for to fee? A prophet ? yea, I say unto you, and more than a prophet. For this is he of whom it is written, Behold, I lend my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare chy way before thee.
The fourth Sunday in Advent.
Lord, raise up, we pray thee, thy power, and come
among us, and with great might succour us ; that whereas through our fins and wickedness we are fore let and hindered in running the race that is set before us, thy bountitul grace and mercy may speedily help and deliver us, through the satisfaction of thy Son our Lord; to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost, be honour and glory, world without end. Amen.
PA RA PHRASE On the COLLECT for the Fourth Sunday in Advent. O Lord, we beseech thee to stir up they strength and come and help us, (Pjnl. ixxx. 2.) and to afford us the powerful afinance of thy grace, tha! we may not be retarded with the weight of sin, which doth so easily befes us, but may run with patience the race which is set before us, (Heb. xii.
The Epistle.. Phil. iv. 4.
Let your moderation be known unto all men. The
And the peace
The Gospel. St John i. 19.
and Levites from Jerusalem, to ask him, Who art
PA RA P H R A SE.
The Nativity of our Lord, or the Birtb-day of CHRIST, commonly
Son, to take our nature upon him, and, as at this time to be born of a pure Virgin ; Grant that we being regenerate, and made thy children by adoption and grace, may daily be renewed By thy Holy Spirit, through the same our Lord Jesus Christ; who liveth and reigneth with thee, and the fame Spirit, ever one God, world without end. Amen.
Tbe Epistle. Heb. i. 1.
fpake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds. Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our fins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high : Being made so much better than the angels, as he hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent Name than they. For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? and again, I will be io him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son. And again, when he bringeth in the first-begotten into the world, he
PA RA PHRASE.
On the COLLECT for tbe Nativity of Jesus Chriji. O Almighty God, who haft given thy only begotten Son, (John iii. 16.) not to take upon him the nature of angels, but to take on him che feed of Abraham, (Heb. ii. 16.) and to be born of a pure virgin, which birth we this day, with grateful hearts, commemorate ; afford us, we beseech thee, thy grace, that we being born again into a spiritual life, (John ii. 3. 1 Pir. i. 23.) may receive the adoption of sons, (Gal. iv. 5.) and may daily be renewed in the spirit of our minds, (Epb. iv. 23.) by the influence of the holy spirit ; which we beg for the sake of our everbleed Lord, &c. Amen.
faith, And let all the angels of God worship him. And of the angels he faith, Who maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers a Aame of fire.' But unto the Son he faith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever ; a sceptre of righteoulness is the sceptre of thy Kingdom. Thou halt loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows. And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning, hast laid the foundation of the earth ; and the heavens are the works of thine hands. They shall perish, but thou remainest ; and they all shall wax old as doth a garment ; and as a vefture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed ; but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail.
The Gospel. St John i. 1. N the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with
God, and the Word was God. The fame was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him, and without him was not any ching made, that was made. In bim was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness, and the darkness comprehended it not. There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. The fame came for a witness, to bear witness of the light, that all men through him might believe. He was not that light, but was sent to bear witness of that light. That was the true light, which lightech every man that cometh into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. He came unto his own, and his own received him nor.
But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the fons of God, even to them that believe on his Name : Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father) full of grace and truth,
Saint Stephen's Day.
earth for the teftimony of thy truch, we may ftedfastly look up to Heaven, and by faith behold the glory chat shall be revealed ; and being filled with the Holy Ghost, may learn to love and bless our persecutors, by the example of thy first Martyr Saint Stephen, who prayed for his murderers to thee, O bleffed Jesus, who ftandest at the right hand of God, to fuccour all those that suffer for thee, our only Mediator and Advocate. Amen. Then fall follow the Collect of the Nativity, which shall be faid continually
unio New-year's Eve.
For the Epiftle. Aêts vii. 55.
stedfastly into heaven, and faw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God, and said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God. Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord, and cast him out of the city, and stoned him : and the witneffes laid down their clothes at a young man's feet whose name was Saul. And they stoned Stephen, calling upon
P. ARAP H AS E.
On the COLLECT for Saint Stephen's Day. O Lord, we humbly pray thee that, in all our sufferings in this present world, (Rom. viii. 18.) in support of the testimony of the gospel, we may, after the example of St Stephen, fed fally look up to heaven, and by the strength of oar faith, obtain a prospect of the glory which hall be revealed hereafter in ws; (Rom. viii. 18.) and being filled with the Holy Ghost, (12s víi. 55.) in like manner as that blested faint, who was first honoured with a crown of martyrdom, may learn to bless them who perfecute us, (Rom. xii. 14. Mart. v. 44.) encouraged thereto by the example of this noble martyr, who prayed for his murderers, that thou, o blefted Jesus, wouldst not say their sin to their charge, ( Aers vii. 20. who fandeft at the right hand of God, as St Stephen was then supported by beholding thee ; grant unto us all spiritual strength and fuccour, when we fater for thee our only mediator and advocate. Ainen,