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IV.

A

For the right Ex. Good, engage all the Powers and Faculcrcise of ties of my Soul to love and delight in thee; Zeal.

and to place all Affiance, Truft, and Confidence in thee. Teach me to proportion my Zeal to the Value of Things, that I may love thee, the Lord my God, with all my Heart, with all my Soul, and with all my Strength; and in the first place seek the Kingdom of Heaven. Let my Zeal have a Respect to all thy Commandments, that it may never degenerate into Hypocrify and Faction; but that I may always pursue it by just and proper Means, and may never think to promote thy Honour, and the Safety of thy Church, by Ways offensive to thee, and which thou haft forbid. Let not a good End prevail upon me to use any unlawful Means that may advance it, but that trusting in thy Providence, and depending upon thy Care of our moft holy Faith, I may never start from the Way of my Duty, in all those Methods I shall at any Time pursue, in order to preserve it. Grant this, Q Lord, for Jesus Christ his Sake. Amen,

CHAP. XXXIV.

All Saints, November 1.

2. W

HAT Festival dotle the Church cele

brate this Day? A. That of All Saints.

Q. What

Q. What do you mean by a Saint ?

A. In the Beginning of Christianity, the Word Saint was applied to all Bclievers, as is plain by the Use St. Paul and St. Luke make of it: After-Acts 9. wards none were called so but such as eminently 13. excelled in all Christian Virtues; and though that Rom. 16. Sense still continues in the Church Militant, yet 15. it now generally signifies such good l'en, as (whose earthly Tabernacle being dissolved) have a House not made with Hands, eternal in the 2 Cor.5.1. Heavens, and so are become a part of the Church Triumphant.

Q. What Perfons may be denominated Saints in the Church Militant?

A. Such who not only believe the Doctrines of the Christian Religion, but conforın their whole Lives to the Precepts of it; such who not only have a holy Faith, but are purified thereby, who have a sincere Regard to God and another World in all their Actions, and are constant and uniform in the Discharge of their Duty; who abstain from all kind of Evil, per- 2 Cor.7.1. feeling Holiness in the Fear of God.

Q. What seems to be the Design of the Church in the instituting this Festival ?

A. To honour God in his Saints. It being through the Asistance of his Grace that they were made conformable to his Will in this Life, and through the Bounty of the same gracious Lord, that his free Gifts are crowned with Happiness in the other.

6. Wbat farther End dcth the Church aim

et?

A. To encourage us here below to run the Race that is set before us with Patience, seeing we are encompassed with so great a Cloud of Wit-Heb. 12.1. Ee 2

nefjes.

nelles. to work in us Firmness and Resolution of Mind, by propounding the Examples and Patterns of Holy Men gone before us, who in their respective Ages have given remarkable Testimony of their Faith in God, and constant Adherence to his Trutb.

Q. By what Means did the Saints in Heaven attain that Happiness they now enjoy ?

A. It was purchased for them by the Death and Sacrifice of our Saviour Jesus Christ, the Benefits whereof they were made capable of receiving, by the Purity of their Faith, by the Uncorruptness of their Morals, by their Conftancy and Perseverance in Despite of all Sufferings and Persecutions, and by fighting manfully under Christ's Banner to their Lives End.

Q. Wher ein consists the Happiness of the next Life?

· A. In this Life we are not able to conceive I John3.2.the Happiness God hath prepared for those that

love him. It doth not yet appear what we Dall

but the Scripture in general has assured us, that God will reward those that diligently seek him, not according to our narrow and limited

Conceptions, but according to the exceeding Eph.1.19. Greatness of bis Power and Goodness. So that

God having promised to make us happy in the next World, we have all the Reason imaginable to put our Trust and Confidence in him as to the Way and Manner of effecting it.

Q. What Light have the Scriptures given us in this Matter?

A. The Wisdom of God is pleased sometimes to condescend to our low Apprehensions, and to reveal his sublime Rewards by such Things as we are most apt to value and admire ; and therefore

be;

22.

it is reprefented in some Places under the Meta-Mat. 13. pħor of a Kingdom, a Crown, and a Treasure, it 43; being expresly called the Kingdom of the Father, Tim. 4. a Crown of Righteousness, a Crown of Life, and Jam.1.12. a Crown of Glory, a Treasure in Heaven, and a Rev.2.10. Treasure that faileth not, though the greateft Pets Kingdoms and Treasures of this World bear no 21. Proportion to the least Degree of Heavenly Luke 12. Glory. But the Excellency of this Happiness 33.

Rom. 6. is more particularly set forth to us by everlasting Life, by the Vision of God, and by a Likeness to Mat. 5.8. him, and by being with Christ. All which im- 1 John 3.2. plies that we shall in the next Life live free Phil. 1.23. from Sin, the great Torment and AMiction of devout Souls in this; that we shall be exempted from all those Evils and Miseries which are the Consequence of it, and which attend us through this earthly Pilgrimage ; a sort of Happiness that the most sensual are affected with. And not only Sin and Sorrow shall cease to be, but we shall enter upon 'the Possession of all those Pleasures we are made capable of enjoying : For when the Spirits of just Men are made perfect, there shall be nothing to hinder the constant Infuences of Infinite Goodness ; so that our Understandings shall be entertained with the Knowledge of God, the most perfect and excellent Being, the Source and Fountain of all Truth, and our Wills vigorously employed in chusing and embracing the moft desirable Goods, and our Affections deterinined to the most delightful Objects ; for our Minds being then enlarged to their utmost Capacities, shall have a more perfect, certain, and clearer Knowledge of God than we can attain to in this Life; and from the Sight of his

Glory,

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Glory, the Love of his Goodness, and the Admiration of all his Excellencies, we shall be transformed into his Likeness, both in the Purity and Spirituality of our Souls; whence must result infinite Pleasure and Satisfaction, incessantly expressing itself in Hymns of Praise and Thanks. giving. Besides, it must needs raise in us fresh Transports of Joy and Rapture, to see our glorified Redeemer exalted to the Right-hand of God! and all the blessed Inhabitants of this heavenly Jerusalem will, in a degree, contribute to our Happiness by their profitable and delightful Conversation. And, to complete our Bliss, it shall never change nor have an end, but we fhall pass Eternity in knowing and loving, in praising and chearfully obeying the blessed Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.

Q. How is the Pattern of the Saints accommodated to our Imitation ?

A. In that they were mere Men, cloathed with Flesh and Blood, and an imperfect Nature, liable to Sin as well as we, and once strove with the same unruly Paffons, and were exposed to the same Difficulties as we are now surrounded with; and that we have the same boly Precepts to direct us, the same Grace to asist us, the same Promises to encourage us, the fame Holy Table for our spiritual Nourishment. So that what was attainable by them, may be acquired by us, if we are not wanting to ourselves.

Q. What Obligations lie upon all Christians to Holiness of Life?

A. They are obliged to it by the Precepts of the Gospel, which strictly command Holiness ; by the Promises, which are so many Encouragements to a holy Life ; by the Tbrcainings, which

are

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