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stowing of my Time here below, that I may follow them in their happy Passage out of this World, and with them be made. Partaker of thy heavenly Kingdom, which I beseech thee to hasten, and shortly to accomplish the Number of thine Elect, that I, with all those that are departed in the true Faith of thy Holy Name, may have our perfect Consummation and Bliss, both in Body and Soul, in thy eternal and everlasting Glory, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The End of the Festivals.

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By ROBERT NELSON, Esq;

The Twenty-firtt Edition.

When tbe Bridegroom shall be taken from them, then fball they faft

in those Days. St. Luke v. 35.
Be affiliated and mourn and weep : Let your Laughter be turned to

Mourning, and your Joy to Heavines. Humble yourselves in the
Sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up. St. James iv

9, 10.

Jejunium non eft perfecta Virtus, sed cæterarum Virtutum fun

damentum. S. Hieron. ad Demetr. p. 23.

LONDON: Printed for C. Hitch and L. Hawes, J. HODGES, E.

WICKSTEID, B. Dod, J. BEACROFT, J. FULLER, P. STEVENS, J. Rivington, J. Rivington and J. FLETCHER, R. BALDWIN, J. WARD, W. JOHNSTON, W. OWEN, G. Keith, J. RICHARDSON, P. Dávey and B. LAW, S. CROWDER and H. WOODGATE, T. Caslon, and M. COOPER.

MDCCLVII.

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433

Preliminary Instructions

CONCERNING

F A S T S.

W

Quest.

HAT do you mean by Fasts?

Answ. Days set apart by the

Church, or by Civil Authority, or by our own Appointment, to humble ourselves before God, in punishing our Bodies and afflicting our Souls, in order to a real Repentance. By outward Significations testifying our Grief for Sins past, and by ufing them as Means to secure us from returning to those Sins, for which we express so great a Detestation.

Q. Wherein confifts the Nature of Fafting?

Ā. In a strict Sense it implies a total Abstinence from all Meat and Drink the whole Day from Morning to Evening; and then to refresh ourselves sparingly as to the Quantity, and noc delicately as to the Quality of the Food. And in this manner not one but more Days were passed in a continual Fast by the Primitive Christians before Easter. In a large Sense it implies an Abstinence from one kind of Food, especially Flesh and Wine, as was used by Daniel ; or a deferring Dan. 1. 8, eating beyond the usual Hours, as the Primitive Christians did on their stationary Days, 'till Three in the Afternoon, to which Hour their public Allemblies continued on those Days. So Ff

that

that hereby some Self-denial is designed to our bodily Appetites; for no Abstinence can partake of the Nature of Fasting, except there be fomething in it that amicts us.

Q. How many Sorts of Fasts are there?

A. There are two Sorts, publick and private. The first we are determined to observe by Virtue of that Obedience that is due to our lawful Superiors; and for those Reasons they enjoin it. The second proceeds from our own voluntary Imposition, and arises from our Obligation to perform it at fome Times, though it is left to our own Discretion to determine the Season.

Q. I bence arijes the Obligation of a Christian to fajt?

A. Nature seems to suggest it as a proper Means to express Sorrow and Grief; and as a fit Method to dispose our Minds towards the Confideration of any Thing that is serious. And therefore all Nations from ancient Times have used Festing as a Part of Repentance, and as a

Means to turn away God's Anger. As it is plain Jonah3.5. in the Case of the Ninevites; which was a No

tion common to them with the rest of the World.

And though our Saviour hath left no positive Mat.6.16, Precept about Fasting, yet he joins it with Alms17, 18. giring and Prayer, unquestionable Duties; and

the Directions he gave in his admirable Sermon upon the Mount, concerning the Performance of it, suficiently suppose the Neceflity of the Duty; which if governed by such Rules as our Saviour there lays down, will be accepted by God, and openly rewarded by him.

him. Besides, Luke 5.

our Saviour lays expreily, that the Time should come, when bis Disciples Mould feft. And when lie brings in the Phcrijec boasting that he fafted

35.

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