PRIVATE PREPARATION FOR PUBLIC WORSHIP

Prayer is a work of the same dignity
and honor wherein the angels and saints
of heaven themselves are employed. It is
an advocate for the guilty, a redemption for
the captive, a rest for the wearied, and a
comfort for the sorrowful. It is our
watch-tower whilst we sleep, and our safe-
guard whilst we awake. -GREGORY

PRIVATE PREPARATION
for
PUBLIC WORSHIP.

Retire into secret before going to the sanc-
tuary, and begin your devotions by reading
some portion of Scripture. It will always
be in place to read the Gospel and Epistle
for the day. The following sentences will
suggest suitable meditations, and awaken
devotional feelings.

Ye shall keep my Sabbaths, and reverence my sanctu-
ary; I am the Lord. — Lev. xix. 30.

Jesus went out unto the Mount of Olives: and early in
the morning he came again into the temple, and all the
people came unto him; and he sat down and taught them.
— John viii. 1, 2.

Not forgetting the assembling of ourselves together, as
the manner of some is. — Heb. x. 25.

Keep thy foot when thou goest to the house of God, and
be more ready to hear, than to give the sacrifice of fools:
for they consider not that they do evil.

Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be
hasty to utter anything before the Lord: for God is in
heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be
few. — EccL. V. 1, 2.

Give unto the Lord the glory due unto his name: bring
an offering, and come into his courts. worship the Lord
in the beauty of holiness: fear before him all the earth. —
Ps. xcvi. 8, 9.

Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his
courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his
name. — Ps. c. 4.

The Lord hath chosen Zion: he hath desired it for his
habitation.

This is my rest for ever: here will I dwell; for I have
desired it.

I will abundantly bless her provision: I will satisfy her
poor with bread.

I will also clothe her priests with salvation, and her
saints shall shout aloud for joy. — Ps. cxxxii, 13-16.

I was glad when they said unto me, We will go into the
house of the Lord. Our feet shall stand within thy gates,
O Jerusalem. — Ps. cxxii. 1, 2.

The Lord loveth the gates of Zion more than all the
dwellings of Jacob. The Lord shall count, when he writeth
up the people that this man was born there. All my
springs are in thee. — Ps. lxxxvii. 2, 6, 7.

How amiable are thy tabernacles, Lord of hosts!

My soul longeth, yea, even fainteth for the courts of the
Lord: my heart and my flesh crieth out for the living
God.

Blessed are they that dwell in thy house: they will be
still praising thee.

A day in thy courts is better than a thousand. I had
rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to
dwell in the tents of wickedness. — Ps. lxxxvi. 1, 2, 4, 10.

One thing have I desired of the Lord, that will I seek
after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the
days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to
inquire in his temple. — Ps. xxvii. 4.

As for me, I will come into thy house in the multitude
of thy mercy: and in thy fear will I worship toward thy
holy temple. — Ps. v 7.

Blessed is the man whom thou choosest, and causest to
approach unto thee, that he may dwell in thy courts: we
shall be satisfied with the goodness of thy house, even of
thy holy temple. — Ps. lxv. 4.

We have thought of thy loving kindness, God, in the
midst of thy temple. — Ps. xlviii. 9.

Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord? and who
shall stand in His holy place?

He that hath clean hands and a pure heart; who hath
not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully.

He shall receive the blessing from the Lord, and right-
eousness from the God of his salvation. — Ps. xxiv. 3-5.

Then humbly kneeling, say:

O Holy and Merciful God, who hast said,
He that covereth his sins shall not prosper;
but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them
shall have mercy; I, a poor sinful being,
confess before Thee, my Lord and God, that
I have greatly offended against Thee every
day of my life, in words, deeds, and thoughts:
by neglect of what is good and practice of
what is evil, as is known to Thee, O Thou
Searcher of hearts. These my sins I bewail
before Thee, and desire Thy mercy. Lord,
merciful God, for the sake of the bitter pas-
sion and death of Thy dear Son, my Lord
Jesus Christ, the only Mediator between
God and man, pardon my iniquities, as I
also forgive all who have offended against
me, with the hearty desire that Thou,
O merciful Father, wouldst grant to them, to
me, and to all sinners, Thy pardon, and
bring us all from our present misery into
everlasting life. Amen.

O God, who through Thy holy apostle hast
declared, as unto me, that if I confess with
my mouth the Lord Jesus, and believe in my
heart that Thou hast raised Him from the
dead, I shall be saved: Grant me grace, I
beseech Thee, at this time, with all my heart
to believe unto righteousness, and with my
mouth to make confession unto salvation:

I believe in God the Father, etc.

Lord, I believe; help Thou mine unbelief.
Increase, strengthen, and confirm my faith;
and let it bring forth in my heart and life
its true and blessed fruits to the praise of
Thy glorious grace. Amen.

PRAISE waiteth for Thee, God, in Zion;
and unto Thee shall the vow be performed.
O Thou that hearest prayer, unto Thee shall
all flesh come. I will come into Thy house
in the multitude of Thy mercy; and in Thy
fear will I worship toward Thy holy temple.
My praise shall be to Thee in the great con-
gregation: I will pay my vows before them
that fear Thee. Let Thy presence go with
me to lead me, and bring me to Thy holy
hill, and to Thy tabernacles. Then will I
come unto the altar of God, unto God my
exceeding joy. Show me Thy power and
Thy glory, O Lord, so as I have seen them
in the sanctuary. Assist me, by Thy Holy
Spirit, in the worship of Thy house. As
Abraham drove away the fowls that came
down upon his sacrifice, so help me to banish
all vain and evil thoughts far from me. Let
the words of my mouth, and the meditation
of my heart, be acceptable in Thy sight,
Lord, my Strength and my Redeemer.
Amen.

O Christ, the true Priest, whose Priest-
hood never passeth away, let Thy power
come to the aid of Thy servant, my pastor;
and clothe him with glory and beauty, that
he may carefully and excellently discharge
his ministry according to Thy pleasure; and
as he has received his talents to be profitably
employed as the Spirit giveth ability, may
he have grace to use them with abundant
gain, that he may become worthy to hear
that voice full of hope. Enter Thou into the
joy of thy Lord. May he go on, O Lord,
from strength to strength; lift him up while
he worships Thee, and ministers to us; per-
fect Thy gifts in him, and crown his head as
with a diadem; and in his heart as in an
ark, may Thy grace be stored up; grant
him Thine abundant help, and fill his min-
istrations with power. Amen.

Bless, O Lord, Thy family together in
heavenly places, and fill us with Thy spirit-
ual gifts; grant us love, joy, peace, patience,
goodness, gentleness, hope, faith, chastity;
that being replenished with all Thy gifts,
we may worship Thee acceptably in Thine
holy temple, and attain our desire of coming
safely unto Thee at last; through Jesus
Christ our Lord. Amen.

Our Father, etc.

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