A COMPANION FOR The Persecuted: OR, An OFFICE for Those, Who Suffer for RIGHTEOUSNESS.

CONTAINING Particular Prayers and Devotions, for Particular Graces, and for their Private or Publick Wants and Occasions.

Printed in the Year, 1693.

The Introduction.

Reader;

I Here present thee with Prayers and Devotions, fitted to sup­port the spirits, and to direct and improve the virtues, of those who at any time, or in any place, are call'd out by the wisdom and goodness of God, to suffer for the cause of Truth and Righteous­ness.

The Charitable helps and offers of this kind, are very needful, and will be very acceptable, to those who are actually labouring under the Cross, and bearing affliction for the blessed Jesus. And as for others, who think they have no need thereof for them­selves; yet may they at all times find occasion enough, if they please, to pu [...] up such Prayers for their persecuted [Page 2] Brethren and Fellow-Members. For the Church of Christ, is still bearing his Cross in one part or other; and whilst in one place he is cherishing some with the comforts of Peace, he is elsewhere proving others of their Brethren with Tribulations. Nay, since these Tryals are common to men, and more especially to Chri­stians, he who says at present that he is most free from them, knows not how soon the All-wise God may see fit to bring him under the same. And 'tis good to be fore-armed and provided for a sharp conflict, which we are lyable to be tryed withal; and the rather, because in the heat thereof, when these helps are most needed, they are usually hardest to be got, and 'tis not so easie then to put them into the hands of those, who want to be directed and assisted by them.

Indeed, by the bounty and indul­gence of Almighty God, the true Disciples of Christ have here their intervals of rest and quietness, and are oft-times comforted and refresh­ed with worldly peace, and the fa­vour [Page 3] of Princes. But when God gives them this outward ease, it is more than his Gospel promises. Their pro­fession, is to be followers of a man of sorrows, and to look for Crosses and Persecutions in his service; and, when they come, to take them up, and bear them patiently after him. So that it must neither be contrary to their spi­rit, nor expectations, to hear of suf­ferings; & it should never be thought a service out of season, to instruct them how to bear them, and to fur­nish them with such Prayers and pro­per Reflexions, as may afford them both direction, and support therein.

The first care in this Case, is to see that their sufferings be for the Truths sake, or for a good Cause. Without this, the hopes of sufferers are but a Dream, and there is no true ground of comfort or support in them. If they suffer only for their own follies, or fancies, what reason has their blessed Lord to thank them, for being fanciful or foolish? Or, if they suffer for maintaining dangerous Errors, and for turning out of the way of Truth and Righteousness, [Page 4] these are not things for him to re­ward, but to punish. 'Tis only their suffering for some Doctrines, or Pre­cepts of his, that can render them his Martyrs or Confessors: And when they take care to be found in that way, and suffer for hearkning unto him, he will support them whilst they suffer, and afterwards make them ample amends for the same.

But when they take care to be found in a Righteous Cause, they must be careful withal to honour him, and ap­prove themselves, by all the parts and virtues of a Righteous and truly Chri­stian Carriage. Their study then must be, to shew minds advanced above all earthly fears and desires, to support themselves with the comforts of Re­ligion, & the belief of Gods Promises, to bear their Afflictions for Christ's sake with patience and thankfulness, to weary out their persecutors fury with their Religious constancy, to vanquish all their injuries by return­ing prayers and kindnesses; and in all things, to evidence a spirit, that is full of love, and holy zeal, and humble confidence in God; but that [Page 5] is not either to be corrupted by the ease and comforts, or shocked and bro­ken by the threats or losses of this world. And by these and such like virtues, they will be made conform­able to the image of their suffering Saviour, and perform a service most fragrant and pleasing unto him, and most honourable to Truth & a Righ­teous Cause. For the world doth not afford a more glorious sight, than to see a Christian with Religious brave­ry & constancy bearing Christs Cross, and by magnanimity and meekness, triumphing over all the powers of Er­ror and unjust Violence.

These, indeed, are hard services. But as they have great difficulties, they will at last have glorious Re­wards, and at present have great as­sistances. The Almighty Spirit of God will support those, who seri­ously and Religiously set themselves to suffer Christianly in his Cause: They will be set above themselves, and will be guarded and fortified a­gainst human weakness, by the powers of the Divine Grace. And this, as they must humbly and firmly depend upon, [Page 6] so must they constantly and earnest­ly seek from him, by Prayers and Devotion.

In the following Offices, it has been my aim and study, to be as helpful to them as I can for this purpose. And therein, according as I was able, I have not only suggested the true com­forts and supports; but directed their eye to the true spirit, duty, and car­riage of Gospel-sufferers. And have taught them under the same, to ex­press such resentments, and aspire after such raised affections, as may become those, who would honour God, and secure their own future happy re­ward by their sufferings, and who count it a priviledge to be thought worthy by the Blessed Jesus to suffer in his Cause. And on this Account, this little Book may be put into the hands of the Persecuted, not only as a Form of Devotion, to be put up to God in holy and fervent Prayers; but likewise as a Treatise of Instru­ction, to be read for the Knowledge of their Duty, and as a Guide to their Practice; since therein they have a draught and delineation of [Page 7] that Spirit which they are to nurse up and shew forth, and of those habits and virtues wherein they are to dress up their souls at such times.

I have been very particular in the De­votional provisions and supplies for these purposes, and have had regard both to private and publick necessities. Which pains, I hope will be acceptable to devout minds, who, when they are desirous to express their devotion on those particulars, will not be unfur­nished with fitting Forms, and may at any time use more, or fewer there­of, as their leisure permits, or as their needs require.

And to the Body of Prayers and Devotions, I have prefixed a Colle­ction of select Scriptures, upon the several Duties, and most important needs and desires, of sufferers for Righteousness. And this I have done, for the sufferers guidance and instru­ction, as well as for their devotion. For, besides the kindling and quick­ning of devout affections, and the strengthening and supporting of their spirits amidst their Heavy Tryals, when they use them as sacred Hymns, [Page 8] or as matter of their Religious Me­ditations: These Texts will teach them the necessity, and help to shew them the Nature and Offices of all those respective Duties, which are as Lev. 2. 13. the salt to the sacrifice, without which their own Oblation of themselves would be insipid,Mar. 9. 49. and their Losses for Christ's sake would neither gain his fa­vour and acceptance, nor effectually recommend and do Honour to his Cause. And both the Scriptures colle­cted, and the Prayers composed for these ends, are as follows.

An OFFICE for Sufferers for Righteousness under Persecutions.

[Page 9] An OFFICE for Suf­ferers for Righteousness un­der Persecutions.

Scriptures for those who suffer for Righteousness.

  • Psal. 94. & Ps. 125.
  • Heb. 12. to v. 18.
  • 2 Cor. 1. to v. 13.
  • Ps. 12. & Ps. 14.
  • Is. 51.
  • Heb. 10. v. 23. to end.

I. For Receiving Persecutions, as Chastisements for former Offences.

WHen we suffer striving a­gainst sin, we are chasten'd and corrected of the Lord, Heb. 12. 4, 5. 6. 9.

The time is come, that judgment [Page 10] must begin at the House of God, 1 Pet. 4. 17.

I will bear the indignation of the Lord, because I have sinned against him, until he plead my Cause, and execute judgement for me, Mich. 7. 9.

O Israel! Return unto the Lord thy God, for thou hast fallen by thine iniquity, Hos. 14. 1.

Remember your ways, and all your doings, wherein ye have been defiled, and loath your selves in your own sight for all your evils that ye have committed, Ezek. 20. 43.

Remember from whence thou art fallen, and repent and do thy first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy Candlestick out of his place, unless thou repent, Rev. 2. 5.

If the Fig-tree continues barren, the Lord will say to the Dresser of his Vineyard, cut it down, Luk. 13. 6, 7.

[Page 11] Without Repentance, the King­dom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a Nation bringing forth the fruits thereof, Matthew 21. 43.

II. For Receiving Persecutions, as Tryals of our Obedience, and as they bring upon us Losses for Righteousness.

1. To be received with Content­edness, and with Thankfulness.

If the world hate you, you know that it hated me, before it hated you.

Remember the word that I said unto you, the Servant is not great­er than the Lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also per­secute you.

If you were of the world, the [Page 12] world would love his own: but be­cause you are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore doth the world hate you, Joh. 15. 18, 19, 20.

If any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorifie God on that behalf.

If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the Spirit of Glory, and of God, resteth upon you.

Rejoyce, in as much as ye are partakers of Christs sufferings; that when his Glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy, 1 Pet. 4. 13, 14, 16.

Rejoyce, and be exceeding glad, and leap for joy, for great is your re­ward in heaven: for so persecuted they the Prophets which were be­fore you, Matth. 5. 11. 12. Luke, 6. 23.

2. With free Confession of Christ and his Truths.

If ye suffer for Righteousness sake, sanctifie the Lord God in your hearts.

And be not afraid of their ter­ror, neither be troubled; and be ready always to give an answer to every man, that asketh you a rea­son of the hope that is in you, with meekness and reverence, 1 Pet. 3. 14. 15.

Whosoever shall confess me be­fore men, him will I also confess be­fore my Father which is in Hea­ven.

But whosoever shall deny me be­fore men, him will I also deny, be­fore my Father which is in Hea­ven, Mat. 10. 32, 33.

For with the heart man believ­eth unto Righteousness; and with the mouth Confession is made unto Salvation, Rom. 10. 10.

3. With Integrity and Prudent Caution.

And let them that suffer accor­ding to the will of God, commit the keeping of their souls unto him in well-doing, as into the hands of a faithful Creator, 1 Pet. 4. 19.

Hold up my goings in thy paths, that my foot-steps slip not, Psal. 17. 15.

Tho' all this is come upon us, yet have we not forgotten thee, nei­ther have we dealt falsly in thy Covenant.

Our heart is not turned back, neither have our steps declined out of thy way.

Tho' thou hast sore broken us in the place of dragons, and covered us with the shadow of death, Psal. 44. 17, 18, 19.

Stand, having your loyns girt a­bout with Truth, and having on [Page 15] the breast-plate of Righteousness, and your feet shod with the prepa­ration of the Gospel of peace, Eph. 6. 14. 15.

Walk in wisdom towards those that are without, redeeming the time.

Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man, Col. 4. 5, 6.

See that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise.

Redeeming the time, because the days are evil, Eph. 5. 15, 16.

Beware of men, for they will deliver you up to the Councils.

And ye shall be brought before Governours, and Kings for my sake.

Behold! I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves; be ye there­fore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves, Mat. 10. 16, 17, 18.

4. With Steadfastness and Con­stancy.

Finally my Brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might, Eph. 6. 10.

Stand fast in one spirit, with one mind, striving together for the faith of the Gospel; and in nothing terrified by your Adversaries, Phil. 1. 27. 28.

Contend earnestly for the faith, which was once delivered to the Saints, Jud. 3.

Put on the whole Armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the Devil.

That ye may be able to stand in the evil day, and having done all to stand, Eph. 6. 11. 13.

Let us hold fast the profession of our Faith, without wavering, (for he is faithful who hath pro­mised.)

[Page 17] Not forsaking▪ the assembling of our selves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one ano­ther, and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching, Heb. 10. 23. 25.

And now, Lord! behold their threatnings; and grant unto thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak thy word, Act. 4. 29.

5. With Faith.

1.

Wherefore take unto you the whole Armour of God.

Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked, Eph. 6. 13. 16.

Cast not away therefore your con­fidence, which hath great recompence of reward, Heb. 10. 35. 38.

Look unto Jesus, who for the joy that was set before him, endured the Cross, despising the shame, and [Page 18] is set down at the Right Hand of the Throne of God, Heb. 12. 2.

It is a faithful saying, if we suf­fer with him, we shall also reign with him, 2 Tim. 2. 11, 12.

Our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding, and eternal weight of Glory.

While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen, are temporal; but the things which are not seen, are eternal, 2 Cor. 4. 17, 18.

2.

And fear not them which kill the body. For not a sparrow shall fall on the ground, without your Father.

Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows.

But the very hairs of your head [Page 19] are all numbred, Mat. 10. 28, 29, 30, 31.

When ye do well, and suffer for it, hereunto were ye called, 1 Pet. z. 20, 21.

It falls to none to be conformed to the image of his Son in sufferings, but to them, who are called thereto, according to his purpose, Rom. 9. 28, 29.

Whilst God continues his hedge about them, Satan cannot touch them, Job. 1. 10.

When he brings them under heaviness, thro' manifold tempta­tions, 'tis only for a season, and if need be, 1 Pet. 1. 6.

When he permits their Perse­cutors, to give them some trou­ble, the remainder of wrath shall he restrain, Psal. 76. 10.

God is faithful, who will not suf­fer you to be tempted above what you are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to es­cape, [Page 20] that ye may be able to bear it, 1 Cor. 10. 13.

He is a very present help in trouble, Psal. 46. 1.

From him we shall obtain mer­cy, and find grace to help, in the [...]. most sitting season, Heb. 4. 16.

My Grace is sufficient for thee, my strength is made perfect in weak­ness, 2 Cor. 12. 9.

And since what they suffer, is only according to the will of God, let them that suffer, commit the keeping of their souls to him in well-doing, as unto a faithful Cre­ator, 1 Pet. 4. 19.

6. With Trust in God.

The fear of man bringeth a snare; but who so puteth his Trust in the Lord, shall be safe, Prov. 29. 25.

Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee, because he trusteth in thee, Is. 26. 3.

Blessed is the man, that trusteth [Page 21] in the Lord, and whose hope the Lord is, Jer. 17. 7.

For he is a refuge for the op­pressed, a refuge in times of trou­ble, Psal. 9. 9.

He maketh wars to cease unto the end of the earth, he breaketh the bow, and cutteth the spear in sunder, he burneth the chariot in the fire, Psal. 46. 9.

Some trust in chariots, some in horses; but we will remember the name of the Lord our God.

We will rejoyce in thy salvation, and in the name of our God will we set up our banners, Psal. 20. 5, 7.

It is better to trust in the Lord, than to put confidence in man.

It is better to trust in the Lord, than to put confidence in Princes, Psal. 118. 8, 9.

Our Fathers trusted in thee, and thou didst deliver them, Ps. 22. 4.

Thou Lord hast not forsaken them that seek thee, Psal. 9. 10.

[Page 22] He shall deliver them from the wicked, and save them, because they trust in him, Psal. 37. 40.

He will arise and have mercy up­on Sion, when the time to favour her, yea, the set-time is come, Ps. 102. 13.

I the Lord will hasten it in its time, Is. 60. 22.

But if you will not believe, sure­ly you shall not be established, Isa. 7. 9.

And he that believeth shall not make hast, Isa. 28. 16.

7. Against Trusting more in other things, than in God, and fixing too much on Earthly Depen­dances.

There is no King saved, by the multitude of an host; a mighty man is not delivered by much strength.

An horse is a vain thing for safe­ty; neither shall he deliver any by his great strength, Ps. 33. 16, 17.

[Page 23] Truly in vain is salvation hoped for from the hills, and from the mul­titude of mountains; truly in the Lord our God is the salvation of Israel, Jer. 3. 23.

Surely men of low degree are va­nity, and men of high degree are a lye: to be laid in the ballance, they are altogether lighter than vanity, Ps. 62. 9.

Cease from man, whose breath is in his nostrils, for wherein is he to be accounted of? Is. 2. 22.

Put not your trust in Princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help.

His breath goeth forth, he return­eth to his earth; in that very day all his thoughts perish, Psal. 146. 3. 4.

Cursed be the man, who trusteth in man, saith the Lord, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart de­parteth from the Lord.

For he shall be like the heath in [Page 24] the desart, and shall not see when good cometh, but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land, and not inhabited, Jer. 17. 5, 6.

But blessed is the man, that ma­keth the Lord his trust, and respe­cteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lyes, Psal. 40. 4.

Trust not in oppression, and be­come not vain in robbery, Psal. 62. 10.

Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not to thine own un­derstanding, Prov. 3. 5.

For there is no wisdom, nor un­derstanding, nor council against the Lord, Prov. 21. 30.

Who is among you that feareth the Lord, that obeyeth the voice of his servant, that walketh in dark­ness and hath no light? let him trust in the name of the Lord, and stay upon his God.

Behold all ye that kindle a fire, [Page 25] that compass your selves about with sparks: walk in the light of your fire, and in the sparks that ye have kindled. This shall ye have of my hand, you shall lye down in sorrow, Isa. 50. 10, 11.

8. With Patience.

Endure hardship, as a good soul­dier of Jesus Christ, 2 Tim. 2. 3.

If thou faint in the day of ad­versity, thy strength is small, Prov. 24. 10.

Wait on the Lord, and he shall save thee, Prov. 20. 22.

He that believeth will not make hast, Isa. 28. 16.

It is a good thing, that a man should both hope, and quietly wait for the salvation of the Lord, Lam. 3. 26.

Ye have need of patience, that after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise.

[Page 26] For yet a little while,1 Pet. 5. 10. and he that shall come will come, and will not tarry, Heb. 10. 36, 37.

The rod of the wicked shall not rest upon the lot of the righteous, lest the righteous put forth their hands unto iniquity, Ps. 125. 3.

Behold! the Husband-man wait­eth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and the latter rain.

Be ye also patient, stablish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh.

Take, my Brethren, the Prophets for an example, of suffering affli­ction, and of patience.

Behold! We count them happy which endure. You have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord, that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mer­cy, Jam. 5. 7, 8, 10, 11.

[Page 27] In your patience possess ye your souls, Luk. 21. 19.

For whosoever will save his life, shall lose it; and whosoever will lose his life for my sake, shall find it, Mat. 16. 25.

Let us not be weary in well-do­ing, for in due time we shall reap if we faint not, Gal. 6. 9.

Consider him, that endured such contradiction of sinners, lest ye be weary, and faint in your minds, Heb. 12. 2.

He shall not fail nor be discou­raged, till he have set judgment in the earth, Isa. 42. 4.

Because iniquity of persecutors shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.

But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved, Mat. 24. 12, 13.

Be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a Crown of Life, Rev. 2. 10.

[Page 28] Here is the patience, and faith of the Saints, Rev. 13. 10.

9. With Prayer and unwearied Devotion.

Be patient in tribulation, conti­nuing instant in prayer, Rom. 12. 12.

Take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may able to stand in the evil day.

Praying always, with all prayer and supplication in the spirit, and watching thereunto with all perse­verance, and supplication for all Saints, Eph. 6. 13. 18.

Is any among you afflicted? let him pray, Jam. 5. 13.

For my love they are my adver­saries; but I will give my self un­to prayer, Psal. 109. 4.

Let us hold fast the profession of our faith, without wavering.

Not forsaking the assembling of [Page 29] our selves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one ano­ther: and so much the more, as you see the day approaching, Heb. 10. 23, 25.

10. With Charity towards Per­secutors.

1.

When ye suffer for well-doing, take it patiently; for this is accep­table with God, 1 Pet. 2. 20.

And be ready to give an answer to every man that seeth you suf­fer, and asketh a reason of the hope that is in you, with meekness and reverence, 1 Pet. 3. 18.

Bless those that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them that despitefully use you and persecute you.

That you may be the children of your Father which is in Heaven, [Page 30] who doth good to the just and un­just, Mat. 5. 44, 45.

Moreover, Hereunto are ye cal­led, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example that we should follow his steps.

Who when he was reviled, revi­led not again; when he suffered, he threatned not; but committed him­self to him that judgeth righteous­ly, 1 Pet. 2. 21, 23.

He was oppressed, and brought as a Lamb to the slaughter, yet he opened not his mouth, Isa. 53. 7.

When they Crucified him, then said Jesus, Father forgive them, for they know not what they do, Luk. 23. 34.

They stoned Stephen, and he kneeled down, and cryed with a loud voice, Lord! lay not this sin to their charge, Act. 7. 59. 60.

Being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we suffer it; being de­famed, we intreat or intercede for [Page 31] our defamers, 1 Cor. 4. 12, 13.

2.

Let not thy heart envy sinners, but be thou in the fear of the Lord all the day long.

For surely there is an end, and thy expectation shall not be cut off, Prov. 23. 17, 18.

Fret not thy self because of evil men, neither be thou envious against the wicked.

For there shall be no reward to the evil man, the candle of the wicked shall be put out, Prov. 24. 19, 20.

Rejoyce not when thine enemy falleth, and let not thy heart be glad when he stumbleth.

Lest the Lord see it, and it dis­please him, and he turn away his wrath from him to thee, Prov. 24. 17, 18.

Charity suffereth long, charity [Page 32] vaunteth not it self, is not puffed up.

Doth not behave it self unseem­ly, seeketh not her own, is not easi­ly provoked, thinketh or imputeth no evil.

Rejoyceth not in iniquity, beareth all things, believeth all things, ho­peth all things, endureth all things.

And though I give my body to be burned, and have not this charity, it profiteth me nothing, 1 Cor. 13. 3, 4, 5, 6, 7.

Bless them which persecute you; bless, and curse not.

Recompence to no man evil for evil.

Avenge not your selves, but give place unto wrath; for it is written, Vengeance is mine, I will repay, saith the Lord.

Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him, if he thirst, give him drink.

Be not overcome of evil, but over­come [Page 33] evil with good, Rom. 12. 14, 17, 19, 20, 21.

11. With Charity towards the Persecuted.

1.

I will weep bitterly, labour not to comfort me, because of the spoyl­ing of the Daughter of my People, Isa. 22. 4.

O! that my head were waters, and mine eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night, for the slain of the Daughter of my People, Jer. 9. 1.

W [...] unto them that are at ease in Sion; that lye upon beds of I­vory.

That chaunt to the sound of the Viol, that drink Wine in Bowls, and anoint themselves with the chief Oyntments; but they are not griev­ed for the affliction of Joseph, Am. 6. 1, 3, 4, 5, 6.

[Page 34] Whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the mem­bers rejoyce with it, 1 Cor. 12. 26.

Rejoyce with them that do re­joyce, and weep with them that weep, Rom. 12. 15.

2.

Remember them that are in bonds, as bound with them; and them which suffer adversity, as being your selves also in the body, Heb. 13. 3.

Be not thou ashamed of the Te­stimony of the Lord, nor of me his Prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the Gospel, accord­ing to the power of God.

The Lord give mercy unto the house of Onesiphorus, for he oft re­freshed me, and was not ashamed of my Chain.

But when he was in Rome, he sought me out very diligently, and found me, 2 Tim. 1. 8, 16, 17.

[Page 35] Ye endured a great fight of affli­ctions, partly whilst ye were made a gazing-stock, both by reproaches and afflictions; and partly whilst ye became Companions of them that were so used.

For ye had compassion of me in my bonds, & took joyfully the spoyl­ing of your goods, knowing in your selves, that ye have in Heaven a better, and an enduring substance, Heb. 10. 32, 33, 34.

Beloved, thou doest faithfully, whatsoever thou doest to the bre­thren, and to strangers, which have born witness of thy Charity before the Church: whom, if thou bring forward on their journey after a godly sort, thou shalt do well.

Because that for his Name sake they went forth.

We therefore ought to receive such, that we might be fellow-help­ers to the truth, 3 Jo. 5, 6, 7, 8.

He that receiveth a Prophet in [Page 36] the Name of a Prophet, shall receive a Prophets reward; and he that re­ceiveth a Righteous Man, in the Name of a Righteous Man, shall re­ceive a Righteous Mans reward.

And whosoever shall give to drink unto one of these little ones, a cup of cold water only in the Name of a Disciple, verily I say unto you, he shall in no wise lose his reward, Mat. 10. 41, 42.

I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat; thirsty, and ye gave me no drink;

A stranger, and ye took me not in; naked, and ye cloathed me not; sick and in prison, and ye visited me not.

In as much as ye did it not, un­to the least of these, ye did it not to me, Mat. 25. 42, 43, 45.

12. With Motives and Encourage­ments to suffer.

Whosoever will be a friend of [Page 37] the World, is the enemy of God, Jam. 4. 4.

If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him, 1 Joh. 2. 15.

Ye cannot serve both God and Mammon, Mat. 6. 24.

And what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? Mat. 16. 26.

Fear not them which kill the bo­dy, but are not able to kill the soul; but rather fear him, which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell, Mat. 10. 28.

As the sufferings of Christ a­bound in us, so our consolation al­so aboundeth by Christ, who comfort­eth us in all our Tribulation, 2 Cor. 1. 4, 5.

It is a faithful saying, if we suf­fer we shall also reign with him: if we deny him, he also will deny [Page 38] us, 2 Timothy 2. 11, 12.

Whether we be afflicted, or whe­ther we be comforted, it is for your consolation and salvation; which is effectual in the enduring of the same sufferings, which we also suffer.

And our hope of you is also stead­fast, knowing, that, as you are par­takers of the sufferings, so shall ye be also of the consolation, 2 Cor. 1. 6. 7.

I would ye should understand, that the things which happened unto me, have faln out rather unto the fur­therance of the Gospel.

And many of the Brethren of the Lord waxing confident by my bonds, are much more bold to speak the word without fear, Phil. 1. 12. 14.

I suffer trouble as an evil-doer, even unto bonds, but the word of God is not bound.

Therefore I endure all things for the Elects sakes, that they may al­so obtain the salvation which is in [Page 39] Christ Jesus, with Eternal Glory, 2 Tim. 2. 9. 10.

13. For Deliverance from Perse­cutions.

O! Let the wickedness of the wicked come to an end, but esta­blish thou the just, Ps. 7. 9.

Return, O Lord, how long? and let it repent thee concerning thy servants.

O! Satisfie us early with thy mer­cy, that we may rejoyce and be glad all our days.

Make us glad according to the days wherein thou hast afflicted us, and the years wherein we have seen evil.

Let thy Work appear unto thy Servants, and thy Glory unto their Children, Ps. 90. 13, 14, 15, 16.

Help us then, O God of our sal­vation, for the Glory of thy Name, Ps. 79. 9.

[Page 40] Arise, and plead thine own Cause; Remember that the Enemies have blasphemed thy Name, and how the foolish Man reproacheth thee dayly.

Forget not the voice of thine E­nemies; the Tumult of those that rise up against thee, increaseth con­tinually, Ps. 74. 18, 22, 23.

Wherefore should the Heathen say, Where is their God? Ps. 79. 10.

Wherefore doth the wicked con­temn God? He hath said in his heart, thou God wilt not require it, Ps. 10. 13.

Grant not the desires of the wick­ed, O Lord, further not his wicked device, lest they exalt themselves, Ps. 140. 8.

Put them in fear, O Lord, that they may know themselves to be but men, Ps. 9. 20.

Fill their faces with shame, that they may seek thy Name, Psal. 83. 16.

14. For Trust in God, to be pre­served under the same, and de­livered from them.

The Wicked watcheth the Righte­ous, and seeketh to slay him.

But the Lord will not leave him in his hand, nor condemn him when he is judged.

Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down, for the Lord up­holdeth him with his hand.

They shall not be ashamed in the evil time, Ps. 37. 19, 24, 32, 33.

Thou shalt hide them in the se­cret of thy presence, from the pride of man; thou shalt keep them se­cretly in a Pavilion, from the strife of tongues, Ps. 31. 20.

Shall the throne of iniquity have fellowship with thee, which frameth mischief by a Law?

They gather themselves together against the soul of the Righteous, and condemn the innocent blood.

But the Lord is my defence, and [Page 42] my God is the rock of my refuge.

And he shall bring upon them their own iniquity, and shall cut them off in their own wickedness; yea, the Lord our God shall cut them off, Ps. 96. 20, 21, 22, 23.

For yet a little while, and the wicked shall not be; yea, thou shalt diligently consider his place, and it shall not be, Ps. 37. 10.

But the needy shall not always be forgotten; the expectation of the poor shall not perish for ever, Ps. 9. 10.

For thou wilt save the afflicted people; but wilt bring down high looks, Ps. 18. 27.

So that a man shall say, verily there is a reward for the Righte­ous, verily he is a God that judg­eth the earth, Ps. 58. 11.

15. An Hymn of Thanksgiving for deliverance from Persecu­tions.

Oh! How great is thy goodness, [Page 43] which thou hast layd up for them that fear thee; which thou hast wrought for them that trust in thee, before the sons of men, Ps. 31. 19.

For thou, Lord, hast heard the desire of the humble; thou wilt pre­pare their heart, thou wilt cause thine ear to hear:

To judge the Fatherless and the Oppressed, that the man of the earth may no more oppress, Ps. 10. 17, 18.

Light is sown for the Righteous, and gladness for the upright in heart, Ps. 97. 11.

Blessed are they that mourn, for they shall be comforted, Mat. 5. 4.

They that sow in tears, shall reap in joy.

He that goeth forth, and weep­eth, bearing pecious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoycing, bringing his sheaves with him.

The Lord hath turned our Cap­tivity, he hath done great things [Page 44] for us, whereof we are glad, Ps. 126. 3, 4, 5, 6.

Many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the Lord, Ps. 40. 3.

The Righteous shall be glad in the Lord, and shall trust in him, and all the upright in heart shall glory, Ps. 64. 10.

Zion heard, and was glad, and the Daughters of Judah rejoyced, because of thy judgments, O! Lord, Ps. 97. 8.

O love the Lord, all ye his Saints, for the Lord preserveth the faith­ful, and plentifully rewardeth the proud doer.

Be of good Courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that trust in the Lord, Ps. 31. 23, 24.

Rejoyce in the Lord, O ye Righ­teous, and give thanks at the re­membrance of his holiness, Ps. 97. 12.

Sing unto the Lord, bless his Name, be telling of his salvation from Day to Day, Psal. 96. 2.

[Page 45] And my tongue shall speak of thy Righteousness, [...]nd of thy Praise all the day long.

I will give thee thanks in the great Congregation; I will praise thee among much People, Psal. 35. 18, 28.

PRAYERS for Those who suf­fer for Righteousness.

I. A Penitential Prayer under Perse­cutions, as they are Chastisements for our former Offences.

1.

O Almighty Lord! Who art wont to shew both thy Power and Mercy in correcting Sinners, when the cry of sins grows great, and nothing but Affliction will make them wise; justly art thou moved now at length, to visit thy People in this Land with Persecutions, after we had first turn­ed a deaf ear to all the Calls of thy Mercy, and had long abused the bles­sings of peace. There is need, O God, of our sufferings, to keep up a Reve­rence for thy Justice, and to reclaim us from our iniquities; and this fiery Tryal comes to purge us from our dross, and to chastize us for our past Offences; as well as to prove our pre­sent Obedience and Constancy to thy Holy Laws.

[Page 48] Our Peace, O! Holy Father, had made us loose and contentious; and our Plenty, had served chiefly to main­tain Pride & Luxury. And the world­ly Endowments about Religion, had stoln our Affections away from it; and instead of continuing thankful & true to thee, our hearts grew covetous and ambitious after them, and preferr'd and took up with them for their Por­tion.

We are, O! Lord, a stubborn, and a stiff-necked People, still lifting up our selves against thee, and against thy Vice-gerents. We are given to Hypocrisie, and take delight in Lyes. Oppression and Rapine are to be found in our dwellings; and Drunkenness and Adultery, have grown common and fashionable Wickednesses, & have set up without shame in our streets. Thy pure Worship and Service, had been grievously and shamefully negle­cted, or carelesly and indevoutly at­tended, before it was given up to be persecuted amongst us. And thine Ho­ly Things have been desiled; thy Mi­nisters have been despised and evil in­treated; and thy Sacred and Dread­ful [Page 49] Name has been commonly & hor­ribly prophaned, by rash and false Oaths, and by the most presumptuous & terrible Imprecations.Is. 59 6. Our Works, O! Great and Righteous God, have been Works of Iniquity; and when thou hast called us, we have not hearkened unto thee; when thou hast smitten us, we have not repented, but haveNeh. 9. 29. dealt proudly, and hardned our necks against thy Word.

To us therefore, O! Lord, belong­eth shame, and sorrow, and confusion of face; and thou art Righteous in all that thou hast brought upon us. Our sufferings are far below our de­serts, and we must needs justifie thee, and condemn our selves.

ButDan. 9. 9. to thee, O! God, belongeth mercy and forgiveness, though we have rebelled against thee: And we return unto thee with true contrition and hearty repentance for all our Iniqui­ties, that thou mayest have Mercy upon us. Oh! for the sake of thy Dear Son's most pretious Blood, par­don all our sins, and purifie our souls. Perfect our repentance, and bring us home intirely to thy self, and pre­vent [Page 50] all our back-slidings. Help our slow and sloathful souls, to be quick and vigorous; and our drowsy spi­rits, to be watchful in the ways of Righteousness. Help thou us, Good Lord, for we are not able to help our selves, and thou alone art our help. And when our sufferings have by thy help and Grace reduced us to our duty, we shall then, O! Holy Fa­ther, thankfully receive any Losses for Righteousness sake, and look on all the violent attempts of the Enemy, as so many instances and messengers of thy Mercy, through our Lord Je­sus Christ. Amen.

2. Out of the Office of Commination.

O! most Mighty God, and Mer­ciful Father, who hast Compassion up­on all Men, and hatest nothing that thou hast made, who wouldest not the death of a sinner, but that he should rather turn from his sin, and be saved; mercifully forgive us our Trespasses; receive, & comfort us, who are griev­ed and wearyed with the Burden of our sins. Thy Property, is always to [Page 51] have Mercy; to thee alone it apper­taineth to forgive sins. Spare us there­fore, good Lord, spare thy People whom thou hast redeemed; enter not into judgment with thy servants, who are vile earth, and miserable sinners: But so turn thine Anger from us, who meekly acknowledge our vileness, and truly repent us of our faults; and so make hast to help us in this world, that we may ever live with thee in the world to come, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

2. Prayers under Persecutions, as they are Tryals of our Obedience, and bring upon us Losses for Righteousness.

I. A General Prayer, for Mercies & Qua­lifications needful in Suffering-times.

O Blessed Jesus! Who now callest us out to bear thy Cross, and to suffer Afflictions for thy sake, who suf­feredst a most ignominious Death for ours: bring none of us to suffer, till thou hast first prepared us for it; nor [Page 52] let us suffer more, or longer, than thou wilt enable us willingly, and thankful­ly to endure.

Let not any among us, O! Lord, come to suffer for our own follies, nor be a­fraid to suffer for thy Righteousness. And give us all Grace to live accor­ding to thy Precepts, that we may all have Courage and Comfort in suffer­ing for them. Let us not take liberty to transgress some duties of our Holy Re­ligion, whilst we suffer for others; nor ever hope to recommend our selves, or our sufferings, to thy merciful ac­ceptance, without studying to be in­tire in our godly care, and having an eye to all thy Laws.

And when our Afflictions press most upon us, let the Graces and Comforts of thy Holy Spirit abound most in us. Whatever else we lose thereby, let us not lose Truth, and a good Conscience Preserve us steadfast in the belief of thy Heavenly and Oppressed Truths, & undaunted in the Profession of them. Grant us patience to bear thy Cross, and not grow faint or weary; and meekness to bear our Persecutors, and not grow angry and bitter of spi­rit; [Page 53] and Charity to forgive their Wrongs, and to overcome their evil with good. Strengthen our Faith, of thy Heavenly Joys, to recompence all these earthly sufferings; and of thy never-failing Help and Grace, to assist and support us under them, and to deliver us from the same in thy due time. Let the greatness of our distres­ses, drive us to be more constant and earnest in our Prayers. And as fast as Afflictions come from our Persecu­tors, let succours and supports still come from thee. O! Let us always have thy strength to bear us up, and find thee an help at hand in our great­est needs; and then our patience and godly steadfastness shall triumph over all the malice of our Persecutors.

And suffer us not, O! Father of Mercies, to be dashed to pieces in this storm, & swallowed up in these waves. But in thy tenderness to our infirmi­ties, after we have suffered a while, send us ease. Shorten the days of these sufferings, and hasten thy coming for our Deliverance; and bring us at length to everlasting rest and peace in thy Heavenly Kingdom, through [Page 54] JESVS CHRIST our Lord. Amen.

2. A Prayer Out of the Litany.

O! God Merciful Father, that de­spisest not the sighing of a contrite heart, nor the desire of such as be sor­rowful: Mercifully assist our Prayers which we make before thee, in all our troubles and adversities, whensoever they oppress us; and graciously hear us, that those evils, which the craft and subtilty of the devil, or man work­eth against us, be brought to nought; and by the providence of thy good­ness, they may be dispersed, that we thy servants, being hurt by no perse­cutions, may ever more give thanks unto thee, in thy Holy Church, thro' Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Particular Prayers.

I. For Integrity, and not seeking to any evil ways for Help.

OH! Almighty Lord, thou hast reserved us for days, when [Page 55] Is. 59, 15. he that will depart from evil, is like to make himself a Prey. But grant me Grace,These Prayers, that are made in the Singu­lar Num­ber, for ones own self; may be turned into Common Collects for others as well as our selves, by a light Change of We for I, Us for Me, Our for My or Mine, &c. as often as these Words occur therein. to esteem no Loss, comparable to that of Innnocency and of a good Conscience; nor to harbour any fear, like to that of thy displeasure, and of the intolerable and eternal pangs of Hell-fire.

Let thy Laws, O! my God, direct all my steps, in my greatest dangers. Keep me more studious in all my Coun­sels, of what is lawful for me, than of what seems safe and serviceable in my necessity: And never suffer me to stoop to any sin, in hopes thereby to put by fleshly trouble, or to serve any worldly turn.

In thy Providence, O! Father of Mercies, lyes all my safety and prote­ction. And Oh! that I may ever com­mit my self to that protecting Provi­dence, by keeping close to thy Com­mandments. Oh! that I may never in any case forsake them, but always [Page 56] look upon that as the ready way to have thee forsake me. Whatever streights or dangers encompass me, the ways of my duty, O! Lord, are the surest ways of thy mercy, and of my own safety. And Oh! that I may find them to be ways of preservation and deliverance at present, and of e­verlasting peace and joy in the end, through our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

II. For Constancy in Persecuted Duties.

1. Against being turned aside by Worldly Dangers or Losses.

O! Almighty and Everlasting God, Keep me constant to thy Truths and Precepts, amidst all these violent Persecutions, which are ready to come upon me for the same. Oh! that I mayPhil. 1. 27, 28. stand fast in thy ways, and be nothing terrified by the Adversaries thereof. That I mayEph. 6. 13. & Jude 3. stand fast in the evil day, and contend earnestly for the Faith. Let me notGal. 6. 9. & Heb. 12. 13. grow weary of well-doing, or of godly suffering, nor wax faint in a good Cause Enable [Page 57] me to stand to my duty, at all ha­zards, and to be ready, if the will of God be so, to witness it unto Bonds; yea, or even to seal it with my blood, and to dye for thee, as thou, Blessed Saviour, hast done for me.

Let not the fear of men, make me forsake thee; nor let my love of this World, make me throw up my bles­sed hopes of a better. Nor give me up, for the sake of any Losses or Ter­rors, to fall from my duty, or toMatth. 10. 33. de­ny thee before men, that thou mayst not finally deny me before the Angels which are in Heaven.

Oh! that I may never leave thee, Oh! Holy Jesu, because thou art a Man of Sorrows. But give me Grace, with Moses, Heb. 11. 24, 25, 26. always to prefer the Afflictions of the godly when they are persecuted, before the Joys of the wicked; and to choose to be among those, who suffer for Righteousness, rather than among those, who seem best to thrive and prosper in the ways of violence. Oh! that I may not grudge to take up the Cross, when that is in my way to win the Crown; nor to endure a short tribulation for [Page 58] the Kingdom of Heaven, which thou art ready to give to all that faith­fully serve and suffer for thee, thro' our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

II. Against being shaken in mind, or scandalized.

1. By the Defection of others, or by Variety of Opinions.

O Almighty and most Merciful God! keep me from being a­ny ways unsettled, or shaken in mind, about the way of thy Truth, and of thy Righteousness. Oh! that thy Judgments may not make us harbour any suspition, of the Truth of our Holy Faith; but make us see, that they all come upon us, to try how far we can suffer for it; or to punish us, because we have not been true to it. They are sent, O! Righteous Lord, to punish the Loosness and Wicked­ness of our Lives, amidst the Or­thodoxy and Holiness of our Profes­sions.

And let not any other Persons un­steadfastness in thy ways, how great [Page 59] or numerous soever they be, cause me to waver, or once think of varying from the same. Oh! that I may never follow weak minds, in their fickleness and inconstancy; nor worldly minds, in Varying Belief and Professions, according as they are blown about with every blast of worldly Interest, or Convenience. Let me not think the worse of thy Truths, because others forsake them. Nor run in to those, who prefer the ways of worldly ease, before the ways of innocence. Nor grow weary of the ways of everlasting Life; because others, setting more by worldly enjoyments, are ready to ex­change them, when there is hopes of present security thereby, for ways of everlasting death. Thy Truth, O! Lord, are everlasting, and still the same. And Oh! that my Belief and Love thereof, may always be one and the same too, for our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.

2. Or, By a Reverence of any Mens Persons.

ESpecially, O! Lord, let not my reve­rence of any Mens Persons, cause [Page 58] [...] [Page 59] [...] [Page 60] me to erre from the way of thy pre­cepts. Let not them carry me, against my own Knowledge. Nor suffer me to ascribe more Authority, or to have more Belief in their Examples; than in the plain Voice of thy Word, or in the clear & common Notions of Right and Wrong, and of Natural Consci­ence. If they would have me shut mine eyes against this Light; let me no longer reverence, or give ear to them. Yea,Gal. i. 8. Though an Angel from Heaven, should come and preach against the same, let me not believe him.Rom. 3. 4. Let God be true, though they be held Ly­ars. And let these Monitors be ever firmly thought to speak right, though the most admired Persons gainsay it, and both act and speak wrong.

Make me know, O! God, that thy plain Word, and the known and received Dictates of Natural Honesty and Con­science, are always true and faithful; but that every man, even the best of men, are lyable to fail. Let me ever bear in mind, that good men may al­ter and lose their goodness; but that evil and unrighteous things, do not alter, nor can ever lose their unrigh­teousness. [Page 61] So that whensoever a good man falls, to do a manifestly evil, and unrighteous thing; his doing it, can onely make us think the worse of his Person, but is not in any wise to make us think better of the unrighteous Action.

Teach me, O! Lord, that it is thy Law, and not their Example, which is to be my Rule. That I am thy ser­vant, not theirs; and am to hearken unto thee, not unto them; and to Mat. 23. 9, 10. call no man Master upon earth, in oppositi­on to thee my great Master, who art in Heaven. Oh! therefore let thy Truths, O! my God, and not other mens practice, be my Guide; and let thy approbation and acceptance, not their applause, be my recompence, thro' the Merits of our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

3. A Prayer for Faith.

O! Almighty and most Merciful Fa­ther, who both seest, & sendest all these sufferings, which are come upon us from the Adversaries of thy Truth; give me Grace, to live by Faith in thee, [Page 62] and not by fear of them; and in all my Actions under the same, to order my self as one who regardeth what thou promisest, and not what they threaten.

Though I converse in the midst of them, and they are full of rage; yet keep me ever mindful, O! Lord, that their Malice cannot hurt me, more than Satans Instruments could touch Job, till Job 1. 10, 11, 12. thou givest them leave. What­soever they devise against me, it will come to nothing, till thy time, and Joh. 7. 10. my hour is come. So that however they threaten, I know I am secure, till thou callest me out to suffering. And since I shall suffer nothing from them, but at thy time, and under thy direction; in the midst of all this fear and dan­ger, I rest my Soul, O! my God, upon thy care, and cheerfully resign my self to thy protection and good pleasure.

And if it seem good to thee to send some sufferings, thou, O! Merciful Father, wilt graciously suit my Try­als to mine Infirmities. Thou wilt or­der me no more, than by thy Grace, 1 Cor. 10. 13. I shall be able to bear; andPsal. 76. 10. the remainder of wrath wilt thou restrain. If thou tryest me, it will [...] Pet. i. 6. be only for [Page 63] a season. Thy Grace will take off their Violence, before it has driven me be­yond mine Innocence;Psal. 125. 3. nor wilt thou suffer the Rod of the wicked to rest upon the back of the Righteous, till they are wearied out thereby, to put forth their hand unto Iniquity.

And when thou hast brought me in­to my troubles, make me believe assu­edly, O! my God, that thou wilt not leave me there. Tho' I am in no wise sufficient for them of my self,2 Cor. 12. 9. thy Grace shall be sufficient for me; for thy strength is made perfect in our weakness. Still as I need thee, O! Father, thou wilt be with me. Thou wilt strengthen me by thy succours, when my Burdens grow too heavy for me. Thou who sendest me tribulations, wilt send me comfort in them; and2 Cor. 1. 4. make my conso­lations abound by Christ, as my sufferings abound for him. And make all the sor­rows which I endure, to work for thy greater Glory, and my greater good, in thy due time.

And Oh! that in the mean while, I may look steadfastly from the Cross to the Crown, and be firm in the be­lief and expectation, that they who [Page 64] patiently2 Tim. 2. 11, 12. suffer for Christ, shall be sure to reign with him. Heb. 12. 2. Set the joy be­fore me, that for its sake, I may wil­lingly endure the [...]ross, and despise the shame. And hold my eyes fast on2 Cor. 4. 17, 18. the exceeding weight of Glory, which shall Recompence our present Ignominy; and on the things eternal, wherewith thou wilt repair our Loss of Temporal, for our Lord Jesus Christs sake. Amen.

4. A Prayer for Trust in God.

O! Almighty and most Merciful Fa­ther, whilst I walk here in the midst of fear and danger, I humbly and cheerfully trust my self to thy care. I place my safety, in an humble confi­dence in thee; and come to meet these difficulties, and prepare to bear them, not in any vain presumption of my own strength, which alas! at best is but weakness; no, nor of any earthly supports; but onely in the Name and Power of the Lord my God.

Lord! I trust to thee, who art able to save me, and hast promised to help me. I trust to thee, who lovest to be trusted, and hast always been true to [Page 65] me, andPsal. 9. 10. never failest those that trust in thee. I look for all my succours, and deliverances, from thy Grace; and am notIs. 28. 16. hasty to fix times to thy Pro­vidence, or to set bounds to my own patience; but am contented, yea thankful, to receive them in thine own way, and at thine own time, even at thy Ps. 102. 13. set-time of sending them. Oh! help me therefore, O! my God, for thy Faithfulness, and thy Mercies sake, and let me not be disappointed of my hope, for our Blessed Lord and Savi­our Jesus Christs sake. Amen.

5. Against trusting more in other things than in God, and fixing too much on Earthly Dependances.

GRant, O! Gracious Lord, that un­der all our tryals & troubles, we may be duely sensible of the vanity and inconstancy of all earthly sup­ports. Oh! that we may neverJer. 17. 5▪ de­part from thee, to trust in them. Nor give over our patient looking up to thee, and thy wise Providence, whose Ways and Methods are far above out of our reach; to presume on our own [Page 66] vain fancies and bold surmises, and Prov. 3. 5. lean to our own understandings. Lord, give us not up toHos. 12. 1. feed on wind, which serves not to preserve us, but only to puff us up. Nor to turn aside from re­garding thy sure Promises, to support our selves, & delude one another with lyes & vain confidences; and to warm our selves at imaginaryIs. 50. 11. Fires, and walk in the Light of those Sparks, which are not of thine, but onely of our own kindling.

Let us not rest our hearts, O! God, and place our confidence, in anyJer. 17. 5 Arm of Flesh; for there is no trust in them. ForPs. 62. 9. surely men are vanity; yea, to be layd in the ballance with thee, they are altogether lighter than vanity. We cannotJer. 17. 9▪ know all that is in their hearts; and they dayly, and suddenly, change their minds and purposes; or their power fails, and they cannot bring their devices to pass. For where they are the most fixt on things, and seem best prepared for them; 'tis not Prov. 19. 21. their device, O! Lord, but thy purpose which shall stand, & in a moment thou break­est all their measures. And in a little time,Ps. 146 4▪ they turn to their dust, and [Page 67] in that very day all their thoughts perish. They are no staff of support, O! God, butEzek. 29. 6. a staff of reed to lean upon, and will break, Is. 36. 6. and run into our hands and pierce them, when we lay our weight upon them.

Teach us then, O! Father, in look­ing upon them, not to look off from thee; and to consider them, even the best of them, only as means of thy Care and good Providence, which can preserve and deliver us without them by a thousand other ways, tho' there is not any of them that can profit us without thee. And make us all to look upon thee, as the Lord from whom cometh our help, and in whose sole Grace and Mercy we repose our intire and chiefest Trust, through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

6. Prayers for Patience.
1. In easie and unwearied endurance.

O! Almighty & most gracious God, who suitest thy Gifts to our Ne­cessities; in these suffering-times, give me a suffering spirit, and enable me [Page 68] to2 Tim. 2. 3. bear hardship as a good Souldier of Jesus Christ.

Endue me with such patience under the same, as no heaviness, or length of my Tryals shall overcome. Let me not be driven by any cruel and un­just usage for thy sake, to accuse thy Providence, or to revile my Persecu­tors. Let me not shew uneasiness un­der my sufferings, but willingly and contentedly bear them; yea, rejoyce in the same, and thankfully praise thee, Act. 5. 41. that thou countest me worthy to suffer for thy Name. Keep me from growing weary of bearing thy Cross, or from fainting under it. Tho' thou tarryest, enable me to wait for thee. Oh! that I may persevere in waiting, and hold on to the end, and never let go my patience, when my Persecutors have left me nothing else, or cast away my confidence in thee.

Oh! that I may inwardly triumph in the Righteousness of my Cause, when I am trodden down by the vio­lence of the Oppressors. That I may be comforted to think, that I have still the more of thy Love, as I bear the more of their Malice. Oh! that I may [Page 69] beRom. 12. 12. joyful in hope, as well as patient in tribulation; and count it an extra­ordinary favour to me, that I have been called out to lose any thing for thee, to testifie my love unto thy Laws, and to dispose me for thy Gracious Acceptance, through the Merits and Mediation of my dearest Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

2. In not envying the success of the wick­ed, in compassing unrighteous Devices.

O! Lord, who for wiseends, art oft­times pleased to permit a Righte­ous Cause to be worsted, and the de­visers of unrighteousness to prevail against it: Suffer usPro. 24. 19. 20. not to fret, or torment our selves, when we see such wicked men prosperous, and triumph for bringing their unrighteous devices to pass. Let not that tempt us, O! God, Pro. 23. 17. to envy sinners, much less to think favourably; yea, or even doubtfully of their wicked Violence. Never give us up to measure the Justice or Inju­stice of Undertakings, by success; and to miscall apparently wicked things, naming Evil Good, and Wrong Right, [Page 70] only because we see it prosperous. Let us not fall to take part with the Injury, only because of its seeming prosperi­ty; or to think that God has forsaken what is right, because he permits it to be oppressed for a while; or, when we see it once down, to despair of his ever raising it up again.

Thy Judgments, O! most Mighty Lord, are unsearchable, and a great deep: teach us with all humility to reverence them, not by bold expositions, espe­cially in favour of apparently unrigh­teous things, to abuse the same. They surprize us with doing right, when all outward hopes and appearances there­of are gone. Help us therefore, when things are at the worst, still to have hope and faith in thee, to raise them up again. They open a way, and make a light of deliverance to break forth, at thine own time. Give us patience in expectation, till that time come. The Unrighteous, as Pharas was, are more in the way of thy mercy, when thou keepest thy plagues upon them, to soften their hearts, than when thou takest them off. Oh! let us not envy them for that ease, which har­dens [Page 71] sinners, and is their greatest un­happiness. They are kept up with suc­cesses, for full tryal of thy servants patience; and, if they will not re­pent thereof, to Matth. 23. 32. fill up the measure of their own wickedness. Gen. 15. 16. Let us there­fore learn therein, Gracious Lord, to adore thy forbearance, and to imitate the same, not to repine at it: And to finish the work of our own patience, thatJa. 1. 4. patience may have its perfect work in us.

And however it passes here on earth, O! God, yet we are assured that at the Great Day, the Judge of all the World will do exact Justice. The wicked shall then be eternally punish­ed, for all their prosperous wicked­ness: And the Just shall be everla­stingly recompensed, for all the suf­ferings which they have endured, and for all the losses which they have su­stained, in adhering to the ways of Righteousness. Oh! therefore, bles­sed Lord! that we may ever detest all wickedness, & carefully keep off from it, even when here we see it most pros­perous. And steadfastly reverence the ways of Duty and Righteousness, and [Page 72] stick to them, even when we see them labouring under the Cross▪ and born down with cruel Oppressions. Oh! that we may see, and believe assured­ly, that although we do not live to see the prosperity of the ungodly turn­ed into punishments, and the suffer­ings of thy Saints, exchanged for Crowns and Glories, in this world; yet we shall certainly see the same ful­filled in both to the uttermost, in ano­ther world. Where, Lord, grant that I may have my Place of Ease, what­ever Troubles I meet with here, for my Dear Saviour Jesus Christ's sake Amen.

7. For Prayers, and unwearyed Devotion under Persecutions.

O! Holy Father, give me Grace to look up to thee in all my distresses, and to make holy & fervent Prayers, both my most bounden service, and my most sure support, under all these Per­secutions. Oh! that the growth of my sufferings, may continually heigh­ten and increase my Devotions. That I may beRom. 12. 12 instant in Prayers, and [Page 73] Eph. 6. 18. watch thereunto with all perseverance. And the more straitness and scarcity I find at any time, of publick oppor­tunities; make me so much the more diligent and constant, earnest and af­fectionate, in my private devotions.

Let not the Malice of mine Oppres­sors, be able to estrange my soul from thee, or make me weary of convers­ing with the Almighty. Let devotion be the life and stay of my Spirit, and let me never forget, that my chief re­medies against their Violence, are Prayers and Tears. When they drive me from all confidence in my self, teach me to run for sanctuary, and to seek help from thee. Even from thee, O! my God, who with a Fathers pi­ty and tenderness, beholdest what we suffer for thy sake, and wilt support us under the same; who seest our wrongs, and wilt do us right in thy due time. AndPs. 56. 8. who bottlest up all our Tears, and wilt remember them with surpassing and eternal Mercies in the day of Recompences, for our Dear Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.

8. A Prayer for diligent Attendance on Publick Assemblies.

ANd, O! Gracious Lord, in these Tryals, give me Grace diligent­ly to attend upon the Publick Mini­strations, and to make one in offer­ing up thy pure Worship, in the Communion and Assemblies of the Saints.

Make me fully sensible, that when they most violently oppress us, we have most need to fly to thee with joynt accord, to help and defend us. And that when they seek most to ex­tirpate thy pure Worship, it lyes up­on us to meet together, to pay the same and bear it up. Oh! that their Cruelty against it, may enkindle in us a godly Zeal for it. That we may Heb. 10. 23, 25. hold on our Profession without waver­ing; and resolutely stick to thine Ho­ly Assemblies, without which we can not pretend to stand up for thy Cause.

And Oh! that no difficulties, or hazardousness of these Assemblies, may make us indifferent about thy [Page 75] service; and that none among us may lay hold thereof, as an excuse for Ir­religion, or prophane Negligence. Make us all see, that we can have no excuse in rejecting Prayers and pub­lick Ministrations, more than in re­jecting other Duties, only because they are persecuted, and have the Cross upon them. Yea, Lord, let nothing seem so terrible to me, as being de­barred the opportunities of waiting upon thee. Nor any Loss seem so hard to be endured, as losing this way of access to God, and the devotion of my Spirit.

Whilst I am serving thee, make me confident, O! my God, that thou wilt protect me. My safety at all times, lyes in the care and guardianship of thy good Providence. And I can ne­ver have more reason to expect that careful Providence, than when I am taken up in thine immediate service. But if suffering shall happen to meet me there, let me comfort my self to think, that it finds me at a good work, and can not come to me when I am better employ'd. And whatever I lose in this case, make me sensible, [Page 76] O! Lord, that it is not lost, but most wisely and well layd out; and that I can not part with my Worldly Substance for a better Cause, or to my greater Advantange. Oh! that I mayHeb. 10. 34. rejoyce in such spoyling of my Goods, as what is aMat. 6. 20. laying up Trea­sures for my self in Heaven. And be glad to have my poor perishing sub­stance thus lent to thee, to be repayd with an Eternal Inheritance in thy Kingdom, through the Merits of my Blessed Saviour and Redeemer, Jesus Christ. Amen.

9. Prayers for Godly Prudence and Cau­tion, in Days of Peril and Persecution.
1. For Prudence.

BUt though I am ready to come and suffer for thee, when thou callest me to it; let me not run upon it, O! Gracious God, before thy Call. Suf­fer me not to expose my self to their Violence, needlesly: Nor to bring it upon my own Head, for things that are no part of thy service. Nay, nor even for doing good things unsea­sonably; [Page 77] or with such Unnecessary Provocations, or improvident Carri­age and indiscreet Circumstances, as are fit to fetch down troubles, when I might have been safe in doing the same, with due foresight and godly caution.

Oh! that Conversing, as I do, in the midst of dangers, I may learn to Mat. 10. 16. beware of men. That knowingEph. 5. 16. *the days are evil, and that trouble is ha­sting on apace of it self, I may not throw away my quiet before I need, but redeem the time. Grant me the skill and care, O! Merciful Lord, to be provident in all things, andEph. 5. 15. walk circumspectly. ToCol. 4. 5. walk in wisdom to­wards those that are without, that they may find nothing for which to lay hold of me, but my Love and Zeal to thee, and a wise and faithful discharge of my duty; which, though they perse­cute, thou, O! my God, wilt graci­ously accept, for my Dear Lord Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.

2. For Integrity therewith.

BUt together withMat. 10. 18. the wisdom of the Serpent, give me Grace, O! Holy Father, in all my tryals to shew forth the innocency and sincerity of the Dove. Let all my wisdom and wary­ness, be shewn in doing of my Duty, but never in letting it fall. And in doing it faithfully, without maim or disobedient reserves; diligently, with­out remissness; and resolutely and undauntedly, when thou callest me forth to shew boldness. Let it never carry me, to secure my self, by neg­lecting thee, or thy service; or by acting against the rules of Truth and Righteousness, or against the Honour and Interest of thy Cause. Under all my sufferings, O! Lord, help me con­stantly & strictly to attend to the ways of Religion, that I may suffer with innocence; and not to the worldly ways of Parties, which abound too much with wickedness. And let me never forget, that there is as much need, of a good and righteous Car­riage, under sufferings for Christ; [Page 79] as of a good and righteous Cause, for the same.

But in serving thee faithfully, O! Gracious God, let me not shew rash­ness, nor give the Enemies of thy Truth Advantage against me, by any culpableness or unadvisedness of my own Carriage. Whatever I suffer, let it not be as the Fruit and Chastizement of my own folly, and precipitancy. But grant, that in that day, I may have the comfort & support to think, that 'tis all come upon me, for my du­ty towards thee, and for an accepta­ble and well guided Zeal for thy Glo­ry, which, however it is spitefully treated by them at present, will be graciously received, and remembred by thee at last for mine unspeakable and Eternal Comfort, through the Merits of my onely Saviour, Jesus Christ. Amen.

10. A Prayer for Patience and Charity towards our Persecutors.

O! Blessed Lord, whilst we are suffering at their hands for thy Cause, fill us with Patience, and Cha­rity [Page 80] towards our Persecutors. Keep us always mindful, that there is as much need, of a meek and forgiving Car­riage, as of a Righteous Cause, in those that suffer for thee. And that thou sendest Persecutions, for a Tryal of our Patience and Charity towards our Oppressors; as well as for a Try­al of our Constancy, to thy Truth and Righteousness.

Let us not fail, O! God, of a gra­cious Acceptance with thee, by our impatience and wrathfulness against them. Yea, and let not the way of Truth and Righteousness miscarry in our hands, through the scandal of our angry Passions. Let us not prejudice any against the goodness of our Cause, by the bitterness and implacableness of our spirits; nor tempt good minds, to be hasty in concluding that we want Truth, because they see we can not be easie in suffering for it, and want Charity.

In all our Tryals, O! Blessed Jesus, let us steadfastly consider, how meek­ly and charitably, thou didst endure thine. And learn of thee,1 Pet. 2. 23. to suffer without threatning, and not only to [Page 81] bear our Enemies, butMat. 5. 44. to love them. To beat back their Violence, by un­wearyed Patience; and to overcome their inclinations, of heaping Injuries on our heads, by our dayly heaping Forgiveness and Kindnesses on theirs. And, instead of being angry at those, by whom we suffer; let it please us, O! God, that we are counted wor­thy to suffer for thy Name, and ena­ble us to rejoyce at our Losses in this World, in hopes of the Blessed Re­compence thereof in thy Heavenly Kingdom, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Particular Prayers for Patience towards them.
1.

HOwever Cruel or Unjust their usage be, give us Grace, O! Almighty Father, to bear it patient­ly. Let us not seem fretful and uneasie at our Worldly Losses, as if we payd thee this service with ill will, and were more affected with those things, which they have taken from us, than with [Page 82] the Blessed Hopes of a better and a more enduring substance. Let us suffer meekly, without wrath; and quietly without noise: And neither disturb our own spirits, by discontent and impatience; nor our Persecutors, by bitter Reproaches & Accusations; nor our Neighbours, by wearisome Complaints.

In the midst of all their Troubles, give us inward composedness; and Luk. 21. 19. Patience to possess our souls, and have rest in our selves. And keep our hearts at rest, O! God, on thy Promises, byTit. 2. 13. looking to the sure and blessed hope that is set before us: not on the un­certainty of any worldly supports, or prospects of this Life, which, like the Reeds of Egypt, are lyable to break when we lean upon them, and to run into our hands.

And let this patient endurance of all their unreasonable and unjust Vio­lence, Jam. 1. 4. have its perfect Work in us. Let us not be wearyed out of it, or give way at last to angry resentments; but shew forth this calmness & sweet­ness of spirit, to the end. Oh! let not our Patience be broke by their [Page 83] injuries, but hold out, till at last it has broke them, and made them re­lent and grow weary of inflicting the same; and till thou shalt have gra­ciously turn'd our troubles from them, into everlasting Rest and Peace with thee, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

2

AND whilst thou art pleased to try us with these sufferings, O! Blessed Lord, grant that we may ne­ver take a priviledge for Lawless Wrath, on pretence of being angry for thy Cause. Oh! keep us sensi­ble under their sharpest provocations, thatJam. 1. 20. the wrath of man is much apter to transgress the Rules of Piety and Righteousness, than to maintain them. Make us mindful that it belongs to thee to punish wrongs done to thy Ho­ly Religion; that thou art most in­terested in the same, and most con­cerned to chastise the Enemies there­of, and wilt do it in thy due time. And that when ungodly men perse­cute the ways of Holiness, our part [Page 84] is constantly to profess and practice them, to plead when we are called, and patiently to suffer for the same; but thine, to punish for them.

And, Lord, let us not be more ha­sty for wrath and vengeance, than thou art, in thine own Cause. Let not us lose Patience towards them, whilst thou bearest with them; but study, and pray for their Conversion, and willingly, and joyfully help on the same, that they may be saved at last, through the Merits and Mediation [...] thy dear Son, our only Saviour, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Particular Prayers for Charity toward Persecutors.
1

HElp us, O! Father of Mercies▪ not only to bear our Persecutors Patiently, but to treat them Chari­tably. Enable us to love our Ene­mies, whilst we suffer by them; to forgive their wrongs, whilst we smar [...] under them; and not to aggravat [...] their evil usage, but, as thouLuk. 23. 34. did [...] [Page 85] O! Blessed Jesu, whilst thou borest▪ the extremity of their Malice upon the Cross, rather study how we may any ways lessen or excuse the same. Oh! that we may approve our selves thy true followers, by1 Pet. 2. 23. suffering without Threatning; byMat. 5. 44. praying for them, whilst they are persecuting us; by returning blessing for their cursing, kind­ness for their cruelties, andRo. 12. 21. by over­coming their evil with good.

But let none of us please our selves, O God! with thoughts or hopes of Vengeance; norProv. 24▪ 17, 18. rejoyce at their fall, lest it displease thee, and thou turn away thy wrath from their Heads, and direct it upon our own. Let us1 Pet. 3. 9. not render evil for evil, or railing for railing to any man, nor meet their malice with bitter Passions and angry Returns. Keep us ever fully sensible, O! Lord, that under the greatest cruelty of their usage, to shew Patience and Charity is our business; but that the taking Vengeance, must be left to thy Ju­stice. And enable us mildly to com­mit our Cause to thee, and desire that thou wouldest end our sorrows, not by their destruction, but conversion, [Page 86] thro' our only Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

2.

LOrd, let not us fall to hate them, because they cruelly despite us; nor to take up with any false Ac­cusations against them; or, when they stand truly chargeable with any smal­ler matters, to strain upon them so far, till we have raised them into great and shameful Offences, by our own evil surmises. Let not us1 Cor. 13 4, 5, 6. vaunt our selves, because they unreasonably depress us; nor behave our selves in any kind unseemly towards them, tho' they should cast off all regard of hu­manity and decency towards us. Nor ever so far forget thee, as to rejoyce in any Iniquity, when it is like to preju­dice their Cause, or to serve ours. But to rejoyce always in the Prosperity of thy Truth, and in seeing great Temp­tations turned aside, and general Falls prevented, and in having good and right things take place.

If they1 Cor. 13. 3, 4, 7 provoke us, O! God, en­able us to shew patience. If they per­sist [Page 87] therein, help us to suffer long. Let us bear all things without wrath, and endure all things without weariness, and not forget to be kind towards them; to believe all things favourably, and to speak all things charitably, whilst they are doing all things contrary towards us. And to look upon all these, as parts of that Charity, without which all our sufferings for thee are nothing worth.

Oh! LetJam. 3. 17. the Heavenly Wisdom, which keeps us pure from their er­rors and corruptions, keep us also peaceable, without bursting into noise and quarrels; and gentle, without yielding to anger and bitter words: and placable and easie in admitting excuses, without any shew of rigor in exacting Reasons, or of being stu­dious of Revenge. Let it keep us full of mercy and good fruits, without any mischievous returns, or any prone­ness to cruelty and inhumanity, when 'tis in our way to shew the same. And without Partiality and Hypocrisie, as persons uniform in all Acts of Ver­tue and Justice, when they serve others as well as when they serve us; and [Page 88] who are careful not to put on any Vertue for a pretence, nor to decry things as Evil in others, whilst we can allow of the same in our selves. Teach us, O! Gracious Lord, that it is only by these Blessed Fruits, that our Belief and Espousal of a right Cause, must approve it self to be the wisdom that cometh from above, and which, as it prceeds from thee, must gain us all acceptance with thee, thro' the Merits of our dear Lord and Sa­viour Jesus Christ. Amen.

3 A Prayer against evil Surmises, and for Candor in Censuring those, who either Persecute us, or fall from the way of Righteousness.

O! Gracious God, in Censuring the Persons or Actions of all those, who either persecute us, or in these days of Tryal are faln from thee, let Equity & Candor direct and govern all our Thoughts and Speeches, and let not ill will byass us. Oh! that we may never charge them with ima­ginary Guilts, through our own evil Surmises; nor hastily make sure of [Page 89] any things against them, whilst they are really uncertain; nor make the worst of doubtful things, which good­will might easily think better of. Yea, where their Falls are plain and mani­fest, grant us Grace, O Lord, to be­hold them, as thou didst the wicked­ness of thy Persecutors, with the bo­wels and compassion of a Friend, and not with the malicious insults and tri­umphs of an Enemy. And to judge of them, with a sense of humane infir­mities, considering, that we also are lyable to be tempted our selves, and to fall by temptations, and therefore ought toMat. 7. 1, 2. mete out the same measure to them, in judging of their Actions, which we desire that others would mete out to us again, when they come to censure ours. Yea, O! Holy FA­THER, cause us always to have be­fore our eyes thy Clemency, as well as our own Necessity; and keep us ready to afford those allowances and abatements in their case, which we all need and desire at thine hands, and through thy mercy hope to find from thee, in our own.

[Page 90] Let us not be rigorously hard upon them, for common Offences, which are ordinarily incident to frail and sinful Natures. Nor for such Falls in great Tryals, as may move pity up­on the account of humane weakness, as well as deserve blame for their own ungodliness. Let us not shew severity in accusing them violently, and condemn­ing them without any mixture of mer­cy, for having been over-born by fear, or for having complyed too far for su­stenance, or safety; for having err'd under some great astonishment, and where they had little time for deli­beration, and little help for Counsel and Advice; or for falling any other ways, in very difficult and perplexed circumstances.

Suffer us not to favour any wicked­ness in them, O! Righteous God, and much less to justifie it. But when we are about to tax and condemn the Crimes, to the end that we may shew a just Zeal for thee and for thy Righ­teousness: Let us remember withal, to consider the greatness and difficul­ties of their Tryals; and thereupon to pity their frailty, and to imitate [Page 91] thy mercy, which thou art graciously pleased to shew, both to them, upon their Falls, and likewise to us upon any Falls of ours whereby we dayly stand in need thereof, for our most dear Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.

11. A Prayer for Grace to turn the same, from carrying on impatience aud anger against others, to carry on amendment of our selves.

LOrd! under all these sorrows and sharp sufferings, teach us to look for the cause thereof within our selves. Our own Sins, O! Righteous Father, are most justly, though severely, pu­nished in them; and our earthly af­fections and dependances, need to be purged off by them. And therefore, instead of envying and accusing others, and taxing the injustice of our Perse­cutors; make us look up with reve­rence to thy Justice, and lay to heart our many private and publick Mis­carriages, and learn thereby to con­demn and amend the errours of our own ways.

[Page 92] Grant, O! God, that the expe­rience of our own fears and failures under our Tryals, may keep us hum­ble and jealous over our selves, and charitable towards the Falls of others. And let our dayly proofs, of thy sea­sonable succours and preservations, teach us to have firm Faith in thee, and to rely intirely on thy care and gracious promises. Let the difficulties which we feel in sustaining Losses for thy sake, shew us the worldliness of our desires. Let the inclinations which we find at any time, to ease or secure our selves by sin, or to allow in our selves what we condemn in others; convince us of the deceitfulness of our own hearts, and of the hypocrisie of our pretences. Shew us all the roots of bitterness, which are ready to discover themselves when we are tryed; and when we see them, give us Grace to cast them out, and to purge our Hearts of the same.

Thus, O! Holy Father, if we can­not amend our Confusions, make them, we humbly intreat thee, thorowly to amend us. And teach us by the need­ful and profitable Discipline thereof, [Page 93] both to walk more perfectly in thy fear; and to bear them with pati­ence, remembring that therein we are reaping the just fruits of our own ways; and to shew Charity towards our Persecutors, as considering how we have done amiss our selves, and how by such Mercy and Forgiveness towards others, we are all to expect Mercy and Forgiveness of our own Offences at thine hands, through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

12. A Prayer for Charity to the Per­secuted.

O! Righteous Lord, who tryest thy People with heavy suffer­ings for thy Truth and Righteous­ness sake; give me the heart con­stantly to own thy ways, and those who suffer for them. Oh! that when­soever I see1 Cor. 12. 26. a Member of thine suf­fering, as a good Fellow-Member, I may suffer with it. That I may be among those,A [...]. 6. 6. who grieve for the af­flictions of Joseph; and come in to bear a share of their Adversity, who are enduring afflictions for thee; and [Page 94] Heb. 12. 3. remember those who are in bonds, as bound with them.

Let2 Tim. 1. 8. not me be ashamed of the Te­stimony of the Lord, nor of any of those who are his Prisoners. But rejoyce to make my self a Companion of such, as are bearing Tribulation for his Truths, and be glad when I can mi­nister unto their necessities, and re­lieve the same. When I see them Mat. 25. 42, 43. 45. Sick, and in Prison, give me the heart to visit them, or strangers, and forced to leave their own homes for thy Cause, to take them in; or in want of food, and rayment, to supply them therewith. Give me Grace to do something like to them, as I would do to thee, O! Blessed Jesu, wert thou here before me, and in their Condition.

And Oh! that I may look upon such services, as the most blessed op­portunities of shewing my Love unto thys self, remembring that thou wilt say unto us one day,Mat. 25. 40. in as much as ye did it unto the least of these, ye did it unto me. Yea, that I may reekon my self therein, to be shewing kindness, not so much to them, as to my own [Page 95] soul. Knowing, that thus to commu­nicate, and have fellowship with them in their sufferings, is the way to com­municate and have fellowship with them in their Blessedness; and thatMat. 10. 41. he who receiveth a Prophet, or a righteous Man, in the name of a Prophet, or of a righteous Man, shall have a Prophet's, or a righteous Man's reward. Wherewith thou, O! Father, wilt crown, both the Sufferers and their Partakers in the end, through the merits of our Lord and Sa­viour Jesus Christ. Amen.

13. A Prayer for deliverance from Perse­cutions, after one is wearied therewith.

O! Merciful God, who hast visited my Bac [...]slidings, and tryed my Faith, and fixt adherence to thy ways with sharp Persecutions; look now with pity on my sorrows and infirmi­ties, and if it seem fit for thy Glory, and for my Good, send me the sweet and speedy comforts of rest and peace.

Consider my weakness, O! God, for I amPsa. 14 [...]. 6. brought very low. Consider that it is thine own cause, and that I am persecuted for thy sake. Consider [Page 96] thosePs. 69. 6. that wait on thee, and let not them be ashamed, or disheartned for my cause. Consider mine Enemies, and let not them still more and morePs. 140. 8. exalt themselves. AndPs. 74. 18, 22. remember, that they daily reproach thy ways, and as oft as thou givest them success against us, they triumph in it as thy favouring and owning of their ungodly violence, and asperse thee with their wickedness.

Ps. 74. 22. Arise then, O! Almighty God, and plead thine own cause. Arise, and right the oppressed, and make the proud, and the Men that rage in ways of un­godliness and violence,Ps. 9. 20. to know them­selves. Return not upon them, what they have done to us, O! Lord. But Ps. 83. 16. fill their faces with shame, that they may seek thy Name; and give us ease from their violence, and grace to turn it to thy praise, and to the performance of all holy and thankful Obedience, through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

14. Intercessions, or Prayers for others in Times of Persecutions.
1. A Prayer for Persecutors, who at any time, or any where, are oppressing Truth, or Righteousness.

O! Most Gracious Father, shew mercy, we humbly intreat thee, towards our Persecutors, though they neither shew mercy, nor justice to­wards us. Cure the delusion of seduced, and seducing spirits. Let them not be led away with errors any longer, nor intoxicated with the love thereof. Let them not continue to resist thy truth; much less proceed to blaspheme and reproach it; and least of all, to set themselves to fight against it by an arm of flesh, and cruelly to persecute and extirpate the professors thereof.

Pity those who are ignorant, and set straight those who are perverse a­mong them. Remove those prejudi­ces, which blind their eyes; and sweet­en and mollifie their spirits, that they may no longer be driven aside by ma­lice and bitter passions; and dispose [Page 98] them by humility and meekness, and a sincere love of truth and righteous­ness, to a joyful reception and acknow­ledgement thereof, that instead of per­secuting, they may fall resolutely to profess them, and, if need be, to suffer for the same.

But if any still harden themselves in their error and violence, and think that by destroying thy servants, Jo. 16. 2. they please thee, and do God service: yet deal not thou with them, O! God, as they deal with us; but save their Lives, though they seek to take away ours. Though we suffer, yea, or die by their hands, let them not die in their errors and wicked violence: But curb them, Good Lord, in their carier, and stop it in thy due time.

And if it may seem good to thee, work this blessed change in them, by mild and gentle methods. But if no­thing else will touch their hearts with remorse, afflict their bodies, O! Mer­ciful Father, and letProv. 29. 15. the Rod give un­derstanding, and teach them repen­tance. Yea, let all thy crosses come upon them, rather than the curse of a seared Conscience.

[Page 99] And when there is nothing left but smiting to reduce them, Lord give not off smiting them, till they are brought to see the wickedness of persecuting the ways of truth and righteousnes, and to make the best amends they can, by standing up zealously for the same. Say not unto them, as thou Isa. 1. 5. didst to the Revolting Jews, who still grow worse and worse under their cor­rections, Why should you be stricken any more? Nor deliver them up to the wretched ease of incorrigeable sin­ners, who are therefore at ease be­cause their state is hopeless, and whose ease and respite is only that of con­demn'd Prisoners, who are sealed up for sudden and inevitable vengeance. But by what-ever means thou shalt see sit to work the same; let their re­pentance prevent thine eternal ven­geance, through the Merits of our Dearest Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

2. Prayers for the Persecuted, who hap­pen in any place to be suffering for the cause of Truth or Righteousness.
1.

O! Almighty and most Merciful Father, extend thy help and pity in these trying times, to all the necessities and back-slidings of thy Servants. Have Mercy upon all, who either by their own worldly fears, and covetous desires, or by the Art and cunning of Seducers, have been made to fall from thee, and raise them up again. Neither suffer them to rest secure, nor to grow desperate in their wickedness, but fill their hearts with such awakenings, as may put them in the way of true Repentance.

And when any of them grow doubt­ful of what they have done, Lord, carry on their doubts to a full Convi­ction. And when once they are con­vinced of their Errors, give them no rest till they have amended them. Let theirAct. 10. 31. Prayers and Alms ascen [...] up before thee, and bring down Grace still more and more to see their fall, [Page 101] and to fit and fortify their Spirits to recover from it. Enable them to o­vercome all fears of shame and world­ly loss; to place their truest, and their only honour in Repentance; and their highest interest and safety, in rectify­ing and repairing what they have done amiss; and to study above all things, how, despising worldly considerations, they may recover thy Peace, and save their precious and immortal Souls.

Shew Mercy also, O! Gracious God, on all those, who are shaken in mind by these Storms, and begin to stagger in the Faith, and fix and settle them therein. And on all those, who by thy Grace have resolutely with­stood the same, and daily perfect and confirm them. Oh! Lord, daily make them more numerous, and let their Sufferings, like that of thy faith­ful Servants and Confessors of old, be a fruitful Seed of a truly righteous and holy Church. Lengthen out their Patience, whilst thou prolongest their Sufferings, and strengthen their Faith, that they may stedfastly persevere therein. Let thy Providence supply [Page 102] those wants, which any of them are reduced unto for a good Conscience. Give them comfort under their Suf­ferings, and in thy due time an happy riddance thereof, and endless and un­speakable joys at last in exchange for them.

The more their Enemies seek to root them out by unrighteous Perse­cution, Oh! that they may answer­ably strengthen themselves the more in fervent and godly Devotion. Make them to have a strict and conscionable eye to all thy Laws, that whilst in these Persecuted points, they suffer as Saints, they miss not at last of their reward, by taking liberty in any other things to live as Sinners. Oh! that they may study in all things to please thee in their Lives, that so they may be accepted in their Sufferings, for our Lord Jesus Christs sake. Amen.

2.

AND tho' here, O! Righteous Father, for thine Holiness, and for thy Truths sake, they are vile in the eyes of Men; let them be preci­ous [Page 103] in thine Eyes, and do thou own them from Heaven. Plead thou the cause of thy Servants, against those that oppress them. Let their Perse­cutors see, that there is no fighting against thee. Make them find, that Truth is stronger than they, and will at last prevail over them. And that Persecutions, which they use for root­ing out the sincere Professors thereof, are over-ruled by thine Almighty Power and Wisdom, to propagate and multiply them.

And when all others are ready to forsake us in our afflictions, do thou, O! God, stick by us. Do thou stick by us in our extremities, and deliver us.Ps. 140. 8. Let not the mischievous imagi­nations of the wicked always prosper, lest they be too proud. Ps. 125. 3. Let not the Rod of the Wicked rest upon the Lot of the Righteous, lest they put forth their hand unto Iniquity. Shorten the days of these Sorrows, and make hast to help and deliver us. And work that Deli­verance, if it please thee, by the Con­viction, rather than by the destruction of our Enemies, for our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christs sake. Amen.

3. Prayers for a Kingdom when in any Time or Place it happens to labour under Persecutions, for any part of Gods Truth, or way of Righteousness: Or, when it is torn to pieces by Inte­stine Divisions about the same.
1.

O! Almighty and most Merciful God, have Mercy upon this most wretched and sinful Land, and exalt the greatness of thy Mercy, by curing the Height of our Misery. And in the first place, purge our Sins, O! Lord, which are the chief cause of all our Sorrows, and which are the heaviest Plague that we lye under, tho', alass! we are least sensible thereof.

Oh! give us not up to a Reprobate mind, and a seared Conscience. Let thy Correction open all our Eyes, to see and abhor all that iniquity and ungodliness, which calls aloud to thee for Vengeance. Oh! that we may see, what it is to be false and faithless to God and Man; to forsake thee in our Distress, and seek to unrighteous [Page 105] ways for Refuge. That we may lay to heart all that Hypocrisie and Pro­phaneness, all that shedding of Inno­cent Blood, all that Violence where­of our hands are full, and the Spoils and Oppressions, and other Wicked­nesses, which have reign'd amongst us.

And by these foretasts of Sorrows, which we have already felt in the course of these Iniquities: Grant, O! Lord, that we may be struck with Terror of those insupportable Plagues and after-reckonings, which are yet to come if we continue in the same. And that we may learn thereby to Sin no more, but apply our selves faith­fully to seek and serve thee, that we may be fit for thine Eternal Mercy, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

2.

AND when thou hast cleared us of the Guilt, then Deliver us, O! Gracious Lord, from the Curse of our Transgressions. Let not Power be employed to suppress thy Truths, or a Righteous Cause, but to support them. [Page 106] Let not violence be able to force the Seat of Justice, nor to hinder or per­vert the due and free course thereof. Bless the Labours of all those, who seek to have Truth and Equity take place, and to plant and settle Peace on Righ­teousness. And set thy Face against them, whose hearts and hands are set on ways of unjust Violence, and pub­lick Disturbance. Turn their hearts, O! God, to be in love with Peace and Justice: Or if still they will be obsti­nate against the same, weaken their hands, that they may not be able to hinder us of the speedy and happy influ­ence, and settled enjoyment thereof.

Bind up our breaches, O! Father, and make all our unnatural broils and bloodshed cease. We are a People shaken to pieces, do thou settle us. We are all in confusion, do thou bring us into order. We are broken by our Sins, Oh! do thou repair and heal us, by restoring us to ways of Righteous­ness. Our guilt and misery have made us heartless, and void of courage; Oh! let Innocence, and the light of thy Countenance, raise our Spirits. We lye comfortless in our Iniquities, Oh! [Page 107] Oh! Let thy Spirit reform us, and then speak comfort to us. Heal all the Sores of our Souls, and then lighten our Earthly Burdens. Keep Life in this exhaustedor in these Ex­hausted Kingdoms, when these Prayers need at any time to be put up for more Kingdoms than on [...]. Kingdom, which is ready to faint, and daily encrease it in the same, and settle us once more in Justice, and Holi­ness, Peace and Safety, for Jesus Christ's sake, Amen.

4. Prayers for the Church, when in any any Time or Place, it is called to suffer Perse­cution for Truth or Righte­ousness.
1. A general Prayer for things needful to the same in such Times of Persecution.

O! Almighty Lord, whoActs 20. 2 [...]. hast purchased to thy self a Church with thine own Blood; look in Mercy [...]pon the same, however Distressed [...]ro' all the World. Especially upon [...]at part thereof which languisheth [Page 108] in this Land, and suffer not the Ad­versary to lay it was [...]e, or utterly to deface it, after thou hast paid so dear for it.

Let not either Superstition, or im­moral Wickedness, Corrupt and Prophane thy Worship; nor let Schism any longer tear thy Body to pleces. Let not vile Men go on, to make Religion a Cover and Pretence for acting against moral Honesty and Justice, lest the Hypo­crisie of some beget Atheism in o­thers, and lest thereby loose Men be tempted to think, and take oc­casion to say, That there is nothing under any Professions of Religion but serving Worldly ends, because they can see nothing else under theirs.

Oh! That Truth and Righteous­ness may be set up in thy Church, and that Love and Unity may be set up in our Hearts. That we may once more hear the Voice of Joy and Peace, and receive Beauty for Ashes.

Pity a Church, O! Blessed Lord, which has long maintained Truth of Doctrin, and Purity of Worship [Page 109] in the Nation; and which has openly professed, and bore out the Doctrin of patient Suffering for Righteous­ness, and not resorting to any evil means for Relief, in the Eyes of Men. Pity those who suffer, and are in danger to be destroyed for their stedfast adhering to these thy ways, when others generally fall off from them, and set themselves violently to persecute the same. And hear their Crys, who mourn in Sion, and are afflicted for the Dishonour that is brought upon thy Name, and for all the Violences which are done to an Holy Reli­gion.

Preserve them, Holy FATHER, by thy Power, and give them not up to the VVill of their Oppressors. But stir up thy Strength, and come and help us. Give us Constancy against the Errors of our Persecu­tors; and in thy good time give us rest from their Violence, for our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ's sake, Amen.

The Collect for the Fifth Sunday af­ter Trinity.

GRant, O! Lord, we beseech thee, that the Course of this World may be so peaceably ordered by thy Go­vernance, that thy Church may joyfully serve thee in all Godly Quietness, through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.

2. Prayers for particular Graces or Blessings, when at any time, or any where, it is vio­lently broken, or pressed by Persecutions, to forsake the way of God's Truth, or Righ­teousness.

1. Prayers for its Purity and Integrity.
  • 1.

    O! Father of Mercies, who seest all the Back-slidings and Cala­mities of thy poor Church amongst us; pity its misery, and possess it with such a Spirit, as is fit to enliven and actuate thy Body.

    [Page 111] Oh! Keep it in thy Truth, and save it from Heresie, and false Doctrines, either about Faith, or Practice. Give it not up to teach Errors for Advantage, or to justi­fie unlawful ways for worldly Ends, and Securities. Nor suffer it to suit its Doctrines to secular Turns, or to change Religious Principles, as it shall be driven thereto, by worldy Necessities.

    Fix it in ways of Holiness, O! Lord, that all its Ministrations may be such, as become Saints. Suffer it not to mix sin in thy Service, or to teach it to thy People. To pollute holy Offices, with any un­godly or unrighteous Petitions; and prostitute and prophane thy Worship, by falling therein to offer any abominable things. Oh! let not its Ministrations become the Ministrations of Unrighteousness, but be Holy and without Ble­mish, as besits thine House, and becomes thy Spouse.

    Whilst thou art pleased to try it with Tribulations, Lord, let them only purge it, but not lay it waste. [Page 112] And revive a suffering Spirit a­mong us,or in­stead of when, say now, If the Church prayed for, is ac­tually suf­fering. when it labours under a suffering State. Make it willing then, and ready to quit all Interests of this World, and live upon the hopes of a better. Enable it con­tentedly, yea, joyfully to take up thy Cross, and to bear it after thee. Oh! that at such times it may al­ways be more afraid of Sinning, than of Suffering. Oh! that it may never fall, to make the way of Gain, to pass for the way God­liness; or to Preach up what is Unrighteous, because it is become serviceable and safe. Nor ever seek to Error and Wickedness for Re­fuge, instead of seeking to God, and trusting in him, and in his holy ways, for the same.

    Oh! Father, in thy Mercy, guard it against all Error and Ungodli­ness; rescue it from all Schisms and Divisions; and free it in thy due time of its Distress and Per­secutions, for our Lord Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.

  • [Page 113] 2.

    O! Almighty Lord, Direct and Rule the Hearts of thy People by the Power of thy Grace, that they may no longer run furiously upon Unrighteous Expedients, nor by their Violence drive their Teachers into the Practice and Justification thereof. Oh! that they may seek to hear true, and not pleasing things; and not only hear, but love to be faithfully dealt with. And give them not up, O! Father, to per­secute the Preachers of Righteous­ness, who are ready to warn them of the Error and Danger of their ways; or to despite them, and treat them as their worst Enemies, only for telling them thy Saving Truths.

    Lord, let not the love of Error, and Hatred of those Truths which are according to Godliness and Hone­sty, always Reign in them. Let them not persist therein without Remorse. Or, when they are smitten with Relentings, let them not lie sealed up in their Iniquity, [Page 114] as the fallen Angels do, by despair of Mercy, and seat themselves a­mong those Sinners, who, when once they have done ill, think they cannot be safe, but by doing worse.

    Especially, O! God, deliver them not over to a Reprobate Sense, nor shut them up under a Spiritual Blindness. But open their Eyes, to see from whence they are fallen, and to seek after those things which are necessary to their Everlasting Peace, through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.

2. Prayers for cure of Schisms, and for Graces in divided Times.
  • 1.

    DEliver this Church, O! Al­mighty Lord, from Schisms, which have torn it to pieces. And grant that all those Members, who are broken off, may return to offer up their Religious Services, in due Dependance upon their own Ortho­d [...]x and Lawful Pasters: and to [Page 115] make Conscience of keeping Uni­on, and of continuing Subject and Obedient unto those, who are Rightfully set over them in the Government of thy Church.

    Let them not think it enough, O! God, to have Holy Prayers. But teach them moreover, to put up these Prayers in such Assemblies, as keep Obedient and United to those Spiritual Fathers, whom thou hast called to be the Rightful Go­vernors of the Body. And make them know, that when, as good Christians, they are careful to joyn in none but Holy Services; they must take care also, as good Church-Members, to present those Services to thine Hands, in the Unity and Communion of thy Church; there to be accepted with thee, through his Merits and Mediati­on, who is theEph. 5. 23. Head and Saviour of the Body, even thy most Blessed Son, and our only Saviour Jesus Christ, Amen.

  • [Page 116] 2.

    BEnd the Hearts of all a­mongst us, O! blessed Lord, to have Peace amongst themselves. Teach them Humility and Sub­mission to those, whom thou hast put in Authority over them. Let Love and Lowliness increase, and all self-denying and amicable Tempers. And remove far from us Covetous and Aspiring Thoughts, and Pride, and self-pleasing, and all Wrath and bitter Passions.

    Reconcile all jarring Spirits; and cause all Discord and Division to cease. And dispose us all, O! Jesu, thou Prince of Peace, to see those Truths, which make for Peace, and tend to close our Breaches, and willingly to submit to them. Let us not give way so far to Anger and bitter Passions, till none but vio­lent things will please us, and till we grow fond and greedy of any Error that will make the Breach wider, but Zealous against such Truths as might serve again to [Page 117] unite and bring us together. Oh! keep us strictly careful, both of Peace and Truth. And as we humbly pray, that we may never give up thy saving Truths for Peace; so do we likewise, that we may ne­ver divide from each other, and be averse to Peace, when thy Holy Truths stand in no need thereof.

    And whilst we labour under our unhappy Breaches; Let us not be wanting in any mutual Offices of Humanity, good Neighbourhood, or common Justice towards each other: Let us not fancy, that their being of different Opinions, or of different Churches from us, must put a stop to the Just Acts and Offi­ces of Gratitude, and to the Re­membrance of former kindness; or that they must give us a discharge, from any mutual Obligations of natural Kindred, or of civil Re­lations.

    Especially, O! Merciful God, keep us from placing all Religion in the Notes of a Party. Let us not so over-ratc the real, or fancied Virtues of our several Divisions, as [Page 118] to take up therewith; and become our selves as culpable, for the Breach and allowed Neglect of some Duties, as we charge our Brethren to be, for the Breach of others. But whilst on all sides we are zealous in pursuing those points, wherein we differ; let us be zea­lous for others too, aud not over­look, or lay aside the care of good Life, and of that common Religi­on, wherein we all agree, and which at last must deliver us all from thy Wrath, and prepare us for thine Everlasting Mercies, thro' our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, Amen.

3. Prayers for the Bishops and Clergy, under Persecutions.
  • 1.

    O! Almighty Lord, under all these Persecutions which are sent to prove and purge us, have an especial care of the Bishops and Pa­stors of thy Church, who are set to take of thy People, and to de­fend [Page 119] thy cause, and fill their Hearts with the power of thy Spirit, and with all those Gifts and Graces, which are needful to maintain their own Standing, or prevent the Falls of others.

    Make them clear Examples, O! God, of Holy Living, and of tru­ly Christian and Righteous Suffer­ing to thy Flock; setting before their Eyes the lively Draughts, and constant Practice of Faith and Pati­ence, Meekness and Charity, and of a Heart mortified to this World, and full of the Thoughts and Hopes of a better.

    Give them Grace, O! Lord, to watch over thy People, with wil­ling Minds, and with unwearied Diligence. Oh! that they may Rule them prudently, and skilful­ly, as wise Guides: And feed them faithfully, as good Shepherds. Oh! that they may wholly apply them­selves, to Preach thy Word, and to administer thy pure Worship and Sa­ [...]rament, to comfort the Afflicted, [...]o strengthen the Feeble-minded, [...]o confirm those that Stand, and [Page 120] to raise up those that are faln, to quicken the Indifference and Luke­warmness of some, and to curb and bridle the inordinate Heat, and undue Passions and Violence of others.

    And let them not think of quit­ting the trust and Charge of Mini­string to Souls,Joh. 10. 12. when the Wolf ap­proacheth, or leave of caring for thy Flock, to take care of themselves: But keep them ever mindful, O! Holy Jesu, that thou artv. 11. the true Shepherd who gavest thy Life for the Sheep; and that, as thy true Fol­lowers, and faithful Ministers, they must be diligent at such times, in Ministring to their wants, and at­tend upon the same at all hazards. Let them shew then, that theyJoh. 21. 15, 16, 17. love thee, by feeding thy Sheep. Enable them to shew1 Jo. 4. 18. perfect Love, which [...]asteth out Fear. And give them Grace,Act. 4. 29. to speak thy word, and to do thy work, with Boldness and Up­rightness; neither fearing the Faces of their Persecutors, nor tolerating, and muchless; feeding the Diseases, or Vices of their Flocks; but re­membring [Page 121] always, that in thy Church, they preside and Minster for thee; and as they, who are to give an Account for Souls.

    Possess their Hearts, O! God, with such vigilant Care and Love for Souls, and Holy Zeal, and God­ly Courage and Prudence, as is re­quisite for Men iu their High Trusts and Stations, and under the pre­sent wants, and Difficulties of thy Church: And be with them in all they do, and in all they suffer for thy Cause, for our Lord Jesus Christ's sake▪ Amen.

  • 2.

    COmfort up their Spirits also, O! Lord, with the visible Ef­fects, and good Fruits of their La­bours and Sufferings among thy People: But whatever success they meet withal, let them not desist from thy Service, nor fall to do thy Work negligently; but when there is the least appearance of their work­ing good up others, let it however satisfie and support them, that [Page 122] they have thereby shown their Fi­delity and Love to thee, and have delivered their own Souls.

    And keep them from all vain Janglings, O! thou Blessed Spirit of Love and Peace, and from fal­ling into desires of vain-Glory, or Emulation among themselves. Let them not defile their own Spirits, or disparage thy Cause, by turn­ing aside to vent humane Passions, or to seek or serve any worldly ends. But in all their Labours and Sufferings for thy Church, help them to approve themselves pure and sincere, as Men, whose great care and chief business is to serve thee, and to watch for the Good of Souls.

    And whilst they are watching for thy People, Lord, let thy good Providence watch over them. When thy Service, and the ne [...]ds of Souls do most endanger and ex­pose them, let them be safe in thy keeping. Put by the Malice and Machinations of their Enemies, and give them Patience and unwearied Perseverance, under all their Diffi­culties [Page 123] and Distresses: Support and Comfort them under the same at present, and turn them all in the end to the furtherance of thy Truth, and to the encrease of their own Everlasting Peace and Happiness, through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.

4. A Prayer for both Clergy and People.

O! Lord, whilst thou art trying us with Losses and Worldly Sorrows, make us easie under the same, and careful to bear them with Patience, and raised Affecti­ons. But let us not betake our selves to Pride, and self-pleasing, and to feed those corrupt Passions, which our Afflictions should purge out, nor ever fall to seek or think of great things here for our selves.

Oh! that our Tribulations may teach us to be humble, and to mortifie our own Passions. Oh! that our worldy Sorrows may cure and turn us, from being any longer fond of this World, and from feed­ing [Page 124] our selves with any vain and ensnaring Hopes or Desires thereof. And that whilst we are daily cros­sed in our Fleshly Desires, we may cease to be any longer bent upon our own Wills, and may in all things resign our selves up to thine.

Let not our Persecutions, O! Gra­cious God, be lost upon us, nor let us be unprofitable Schollars in the School of Affliction: Let it not be justly chargeable on us, that Tri­bulations could not mend us, nor the fiery Trial resine our Spirits, and purge away our Dross. But bring us by our Sufferings, to know our selves, and to set light by all Earth­ly things, and to take up with thee for our Portion, and with the Sure and Blessed Hopes of thine Ever­lasting Mercies, thro' the Merits and Mediation of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

5. A Prayer for the Churches Defence, and Deliverance from Persecutions.

UNder all its Wants and Back­slidings, Sorrows and Di­stresses, look thou upon thy Church, O! Lord, and support and deliver it. Many are they who Combine against it, and great is their Power, and Vigilant and Earnest is their Care and Endeavour, to suppress and destroy it. And against all their Assaults, it has no other De­fence, but thy Grace and good Providence.

Do not thou forsake it then, O! God, for it flies to thee, and rests on thee alone for Succor. Maintain it, for it is thine own Cause. And if it be cast down, thine Enemies and theirs will tryumph. Take the Matter therefore into thine Hand, for no other is sufficient for it, and thou art most concerned therein. Bring it safe through this Fi [...]ry Trial, and let it not be consumed there­by, but, as1 Pe [...]. 1. 7. Gold is, only purged and putrified of its Dross. Give it [Page 126] a Cure, O! Lord, of all its Errors and Impurities, and quietness in the End from Persecutions, and Grace not to grow careless, or be Corrupted by days of Ease; but to improve the same, in doing thee Honour and Service with more Freedom, and fewer Interruptions, thro' Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

15. A Thanksgiving for any Comfor­table Cessation, or for Rest and Ease from Persecution.

BLessed be thy Great and Glo­rious Name; O! Father of Mercies, and God of all Comforts, for the comfort of these days of ease, from our former Tribulations. Thou hast in great pity considered our Frailty and Weakness, and hath Psal. 125. 3. not suffered the Rod of the Persecutors to lie too heavy, or rest too long upon o [...]r Backs. Thou hast not been Deaf to our Desires when we called upon thee, nor suffered our Hopes in thy Gracious Promises to [...]ail. Thou hast fulfilled thy Word unto thy Servants, who served and [Page 127] suffered for thee in Confidence thereof; and hast made the Wicked to cease from troubling us, and ex­changed the Fiery Trial of their ungodly Violence, for the sweet and refreshing Comforts of this Rest and Peace.

O! Lord, let us never forget this great Mercy, nor abuse it. Let us not grow Careless or Cor­rupt by the Blessings of Peace, or run into Earthly Affections and Dependencies; and contract such Dross, as may need a second time to be brought through the Furnace. But keep us sober, and purged and purified in our Hearts and Minds; and maintain in us [...]uch a Godly Zeal, and watchful diligence under the same, as will make use of the blessed Opportunities of Peace, for going on with more constancy, and with less hindrance and disturbance in thy Service.

And make us learn, O! Graci­ous God, by our past Suffering, and Experience of thy Goodness, to keep improved in Faith and Patience. Having found thee so faithful in [Page 128] our necessity, give us Grace to re­lye upon thee. Let usHeb. 10. 38. not cast away our confidence, norGal. 6. 9. grow wea­ry in well doing; knowing that in due time we shall reap, if we faint not. Oh! that the sweet Remembrance of thy Mercies may ever fill our Hearts with Love, and our Tongues with Praise. Oh! that it may make us careful in well doing, and con­fident of thy Faithfulness and Care over us, whilst we commit our Souls unto thy keeping, in holding to thy ways, through our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

AN OFFICE FOR Prisoners for Righteousness.

[Page 129] AN OFFICE FOR Prisoners for Righteousness.

SCRIPTURES.

  • Psal. 7.
  • Act. 5. from v. 18.
  • Mat. 10.
  • Psal. 10.
  • Act. 16. from v. 18.
  • 1 Pet. 4. from v. 12.

1.

YE shall be Betrayed, both by Parents and Brethren, and Kinsfolk and Friends; and some of you shall they cause to be put to Death.

And they shall lay Hands on you, and deliver you up into Prisons, and ye shall be brought before Kings and Rulers for my Names sake.

[Page 130] And it shall turn to you for a Te­stimony.

But there shall not an Hair of your Head perish.

In your Patience possess ye your Souls,

And Meditate not before, what ye shall answer. But settle in your Hearts, that I will give you a Mouth and Wisdom. which all your Adversaries shall not be able to gain say, or resist, Luk. 21. 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19.

Precious in the Sight of the Lord, is the Death of his Saints, Ps. 116. 15.

What mean ye to weep, and to break mine Heart? For I am ready not to be bound only, but to die at Jerusalem, for the Name of the Lord Jesus, Act. 21. 13.

He that loveth his Life shall lose it; and he that hateth his Life in this World, shall keep it unto Life Eternal, Joh. 12. 25.

2.

THE Lord heareth the poor, and despiseth not his Prisoners, Psal. 69. 33.

[Page 131] Deliver me from my Persecutors, for they are stronger than I. Bring my Soul out of Prison, that I may praise thy Name, Psal. 142. 6, 7.

Deliver me, O! Lord, from the evil man, preserve me from the Men of Violence.

Keep me, O! Lord, from the Hands of the Wicked, who have proposed to overthrow my Goings.

For the Proud have hid a Snare for me, and Cords; they have spread a Net by the way-side, they have set Gins for me.

They have sharpned their Tongues like a Serpent, Adders Poyson is under their Lips, Psal. 140. 1, 3, 4, 5.

In the work of the Gospel, I suffer trouble as an evil Doer, even unto Bonds; but the word of God is not bound, 2 Tim. 2. 9.

For many of the Brethren in the Lord, waxing confident by my Bonds, are much more bold to speak the word with­out Fear. Phil. 1. 14.

3.

REmember my Bonds, Col. 4. 18. Remember those that are in Bonds, as bound with them, Heb. 13. 3.

Ye had compassion on me in my Bonds, and took joyfully the spoiling of your Goods, whilst ye became Companions of those, that were made a gazing-St [...]ck by Reproaches and Afflictions, Heb. 10. 33, 34.

I would have retained Onesimus with me, that in thy stead he might have ministred to me in the Bonds of the Gospel, Philem. 13.

Be not thou ashamed of the Testi­mony of our Lord, nor of me his Pri­soner; but be thou partaker of the Af­flictions of the Gospel, according to the Power of God, 2 Tim. 1. 8.

Both in my Bonds, and in the Con­firmation and Defence of the Gospel, ye are all Partakers of my Grace, Phil. 1. 7.

I was in Prison, and ye came unto me. In as much as ye have done it to one of the least of these my Brethren, ye have done it unto me, Mat. 25. 36, 40.

4. An Hymn of Thanksgiving, for Deliverance upon a Trial, or out of P [...]ison.

IF it had not been the Lord, who was on my side, when Men rose up against me.

Then they had swallowed me up quick, when their Wrath was kindled against me.

Then the proud Waters had gone over my Soul, Psal. 124. 2, 3, 5.

The Sorrows of Death compassed me, and the Floods of ungodly Men made me afraid, Psal. 18. 4.

They compassed me about like Bees, they thrust sore at me, that I might fall; but the Lord helped me, Psal. 118. 12, 13.

And I had the Sentence of Death in my self, that I should not trust in my self, but in God which raiseth the Dead, 2 Cor. 1. 9.

But blessed be the Lord, who hath not given me as a Prey unto their Death.

My Soul is escaped, as a Bird out of the Snare of the Fowler; the Snare is broken, and I have escaped, Ps. 124. 6 7.

[Page 134] He sent down his Hand from above, and delivered me out of the great Wa­ters, from the Hands of strange Chil­dren.

Whose Mouth speaketh Vanity, and their Right Hand is a Right Hand of Falshood, Ps. 144. 7, 8.

He delivered me from my strong Enemy, and from them which hated me; for they were too strong for me.

He brought me forth also into a large place; he delivered me, because he de­lighted in me, Psal. 18. 17, 19.

The Lord is my Strength, and my Song, and is become my Salvation.

The Lord is on my side; I will not fear what Man can do unto me.

I shall not die, but live, and declare the works of the Lord, Psal. 118. 6, 14, 17.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost.

As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, World without end. Amen.

This Doxology may likewise be used at the end of the several pro­ceeding Collections of Scriptures, [Page 135] in this Office for Prisoners for Righte­ousness, as also at the end of the se­veral Collections of Scripture, in the former Office for those, who suf­fer for Righteousness; when these Collections are read, not only for Instruction, but Devotionally, as Hymns to God.

Prayers.

1. A General Prayer for all Prisoners.

O! Almighty and Everlasting God, thou seest the Streights and Sorrows which I endure in this place, and how unable I am to help my self, or to bring about my own Deliverance. But the less Hope and Support I have in my self, the more I look up unto thee, and place my Trust in thy Mercy. And when my own care can avail the least, let thine, O! thou blessed Helper of the Helpless, appear the most for me.

Give me a Body, O! my God, fit to bear the Inconveniences of this close place, and Grace to be [Page 136] content therewith: Whilst I lie up here, let me not want necessary Provisions, nor repine at the mean­ness thereof. Suit the lowness of my Desires, to the hardship of my Circumstances, and let the great­ness of my study and care be, to (indemni­fie and con­tent my Creditors, when for Debt. do Justice, and shew Temperance and Self-denials) not to please my self, or to gratifie my own Carnal Ease and Appetites.

Whilst I am here kept apart from my former acquaintance, Grant, O! Lord, that I may care­fully retire into my Self, and call mine own ways to remembrance. And, Oh! that I may amend whatsoever is amiss there, and set all so streight with thee, that I may delight to look into my own Heart, and to search out my own Spirit. Lord! now thou hast left me nothing else to do, make me apply my self wholly toLuk. 10. 24. the one thing necessary. To grow in Holy Reverence, and Devotion of Spirit, in the study of dealing justly, and fairly, with all who are any way concerned with me; in Humility apud mortified Af­fections, [Page 137] in Patience and Content­edness. Oh! plant and fill my Soul, with all Heavenly Virtues, and make bright all the cloudy and dark parts thereof, with the Rays of thy divine Image. And then, O! my God, I shall see something of thee, as oft as I look into my self, and learn to be pleased with my own Company, though others are kept from me.

And in whatsoever want I am of other Comforts, grant, O! Father of Mercies, that both here, and ever hereafter, I may have the Comfort of thy Presence. When all else are taken from me, do not thou forsake me. Though I dwell in a disconsolate Room, let thy Spirit dwell with me. Let thy Law at all times direct me, and let the Sense of thy Love comfort me. And after thou hast Graciously im­proved this Melancholy Restraint, to wean me from vain and carnal Delight, and to set my Soul free in thy good time. O! my refuge and strength, deliver me out of this Prison, and set my Body too at [Page 138] Liberty, for my dear Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.

The Prisoner for Righteousness may use the preceding Prayers, for Integrity, for Constancy in persecuted Duties, for Faith, for Trust in God, for Patience, for Charity towards Persecu­ters, &c. in the foregoing Office for Sufferers [...]or Righteousness, as he sees cause.

And for more particular Cir­cumstances and needs, of such as are Prisoners for the same, they may express the Devotion of their Spirit in these Prayers following:

2. Particular Prayers.

1. A Prayer for the Prisoner for any part of Truth or Righteousness, to use in his Family.

O! Father of Mercies, who ta­kest the Poor and Helpless, under thine own more immediate and especial care, when thou takest those from them, whose part it is under thee to take care of them; [Page 139] shew the Riches of thy Grace and Loving-kindness; I humbly intreat thee, to my (When the Priso­ner has not these Re­lations, he may say, to my Father's House, and omit the Words contained within the Marks () and make other Al­terations, as this case shall require. Dear Wife and Chil­dren.] Guide them always by thy Holy Spirit, and watch over them with an indulgent providence. [Keep them obedient to Councel, and continue them under the Bles­sing of her care.) Preserve them from Want, and protect them from Danger, and make them a mutual Comfort, and Support to each o­ther. And in the midst of all my Troubles, continue (both her and) them a constant Comfort and Re­freshment to me thy poor unwor­thy Servant.

And let me not, O! Gracious God, make them unhappy. Or, if we suffer in common, for stand­ing off from prevailing Violence, and because we will not concurr, or stake in with the wicked Act­ings of an unrighteous Generation; let none of us repine at such Suffer­ings, but look upon them as Affli­ons, that are willing to be embra­ced; yea, rather Triumphantly to be rejoyced in. I humbly desire, [Page 140] O! Father, that may all trust thee with our selves, and cheerfully rest upon thy Faithfulness, to make up to us any Losses, which shall be­fal us on such accounts. Thy good Providence is a great and blessed portion in such cases, as, praised be thy Name, thy Saints have found in all times, by joyful Ex­perience. And to that good Pro­vidence, O! my God, do I trust. It shall always be my Hope and Confidence; and oh! that as it is the truest Blessing, so it may ever be the happy portion, both of me and mine, thro' Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

2. Prayers for the Prisoner for Truth or Righteousness, to use for himself.

1. A Prayer for Deliverance from E­nemies and Prosecutors, when at any time, or any where, he is put in Prison, for any Parts of Truth, or Righteousness.

O! Merciful God, who art the Helper of the Helpless, and a Refuge for the oppressed in the Day of their Troubles; be thou my Fortress and Help against my Persecutors.

They are mine Enemies, O! Lord, for thy sake; and therefore set themselves thus violently against me, because they cannot drive me to leave thee. And I have no visi­ble way left to appease their Hatred, because I dare not forsake a jsut Cause, or go along with them in speaking and acting against that which is right. AndPsal. 25. 19. these mine Enemies are many, and Mighty; [Page 124] and they persecute me violently, and have laid a Trap for my Soul, andPsal. 22. 11. there is none to help me.

But though I can neither appease their Hatred, nor withstand it; yet thou, O! Lord, canst alter it at thy Pleasure; or, if they per­sist therein, thou canst disappoint them. And to thee do I flee, and look for Succour. Help me there­fore, O! my Ged, for in thee do I trust. Help thou me, for I have none else to help me, for Deceitful are the Promises, andPsal. 108. 12. vain is the help of Men. Ps. 22. 11, 19. Make haste to help me, for Trouble is hard at Hand. Turn the Hearts of mine Enemies, for seeking my Life; or, if they will persevere therein, bring to nought their evil Purposes. Forgive them, Gracious Father, and bring not them into such a P [...]t, as they have digged for me. But Preserve me from falling into it, and from be­ing lost in the Depth thereof, for my dearest Lord and Saviour, Je­sus Christ's sake. Amen.

2. A Prayer for Deliverance, from Frail and Faithless Friends, when they are brought in at such Times, to accuse him for the same.

YEA, O! Gracious Father, not only the Envy and Malice of mine Enemies, but the weak­ness of my own familiar Friends is made use of to destroy me. And a violent Temptation is laid before them, to compass their own Safety, by joyning to compass my Fall.

But the Hearts of all Men, O! Almighty Lord, are in thine Hand. Thou canst at thy Pleasure fortifie the fearful, and fix the wavering, and unresolved Spirit; and give Fidelity, Honour, and Conscience, such Power with them, as shall prevail over their corrupt Fears, and worldly Interests. Thou canst as easily strengthen the weak­ness of my Friends, and keep them from Breach of Confidence, from all Faithless, or strained and false Accusations; as thou canst turn, or defeat the Malice of my Foes. And to thee, O! merciful Father, [Page 144] do I trust, that neither my Foes shall have their Wills, in working of my Ruin; nor the weakness of my Friends shall carry them against their Wills, to do the same.

And oh! as thou art my Confi­dence, so let me be thy Care. Keep me safe here under thy custody, and receive me at last to thine Everlasting Mercy, for thy blessed Son, and my only Saviour Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.

3. A Prayer for Graces at such times, under his Sufferings and Persecuti­ons for any ways of Truth and Righ­teousness.

IN the mean time, O! Righte­ous Lord, whatsoever thou hast appointed for me in this Tryal, I am content to bear it. And give me Strength and Ability to bear it; yea, though it proceed to Blood. I resign my self up to thy good pleasure therein. I humbly and meekly submit to it, as it is thy doing, and as it is infinitely my Deserving, and own thy Judgment [Page 145] upon me for my Sins,especially, &c. here name Par­ticulars. to be most Just and Righteous therein. But then, Holy Father, I most earnest­ly intreat thee, that I may have all my Punishment in this World, but rest with thee in thy Heavenly Kingdom.

Yea, as my Tryal is a Suffering for thy Righteousness, I thankfully receive it at thine Hand. But then, O! my God, whilst I am tried for thee, do thou shew forth thy Power, and the abundance of thy Grace in me. Grant me a Serene Pati­ence, calmly to bear my Suffer­ings, and contentedly and quietly to wait the end thereof. Give me Courage and constant Presence of Mind, to behave my self undaun­tedly; and Prudence, to act and answer in all things, wisely, and becomingly. Give me Faith in thy power and promises, to hold on without Fainting, in sure Expecta­tion of thy Succors; and to endure all without weariness, in Confidence of thy joyful and eternal Recom­pences. Fill me with an inflexible Integrity, and Constancy in my [Page 146] Duty, that I may not waver there­in at any time, much less fall from it, or from any Precepts there­of, to rid my self out of my own great Troubles, or to bring any de­sired Events to pass. Yea, fill me with such Constancy in thy ways, as willPsal. [...]25. 3. not suffer me, how long so­ever the Rod of the Unrighteous rests upon me, to put forth my Hand unto Iniquity. And give me Charity after thine own Example, O! blessed Je­s [...], freely to forgive my Malicious Enemies, or Frail and Faithless Friends, and heartily to pray for them, tho' they continue to perse­cute me. Whilst thou keepest on my Trials, deny me not these Gra­ces, O! merciful Lord, nor any o­thers, which thou seest needful for me, that I may acquit my self well and acceptably under the same, for our Lord Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.

4. A Prayer for a Mind raised above Earthly Things.

O! Father of Mercies, raise my Mind by these Afflictions, a­bove [Page 147] the Love of all Earthly Things. Yea, even of those things, which I have lavishly spent most time upon, and have been the most inordinate­ly fond of. I see now, and make me daily to see it more and more, how vain and unprofitable they are when the evil day comes. And oh! what I may learn thereby, and learn it perfectly, to fix mine Eyes and Heart on thee, who hast deserved more of me infinitely than I can express to thee; and who canst always help and comfort me; and wilt never leave me, especially not then, when I am driven to thee for Succour, and find the greatest Need to have thee stand by me.

Make my Duty, good Lord, to become my Delight; and Heavenly things, my Treasure. For they are Comforts in Distress; stable Com­forts, that will accompany us to the Block, or the Grave, and beyond them; and will not fail to make us infinitely, and for ever happy in thy Presence. Which Grant, O! Hea­venly Father, to me a wretched Sin­ner, for the sake of my dearest Sa­viour [Page 148] and Redeemer, Jesus Christ. Amen.

5. A Prayer for Peace with God, and a qui [...]t Conscience.

ABove all, O! blessed Lord, let me have the Comforts of thy holy Spirit, and a clear and quiet Conscience, to support me under all these hard Tryals. Shew me all my Sins, and give me Grace intirely to repent of them, and to be per­fectly set against the same. But as­sure me at the same time, of thy Mercies towards all true penitent Sinners; and make me see, O! Gra­cious Father, that for Christ's sake, thou art not only willing, but desi­rous and joyful to receive them, yea, toLuk. 15. 20. run out, and meet them, as the tender Father did the Returning Prodigal.

And as for my Sins, O! God, tho' with the Prodigal, I have gone far, and have lost my self in evil ways; yet by thy Grace, I am come also with him heartily to return from mine Offences. I am weary of my [Page 149] Sins, and am earnestly desirous to for­sake them. Tho' I have been lamen­tably careless in times past; yet now my sincere desire, and full purpose is, to shew a Godly care, and dili­gent endeavour against the same, for the time to come. And I hum­bly depend upon thy Grace, and trust to thy precious promises there­of, to perfect and give strength to my sincere Endeavours.

Look upon me therefore, O! Fa­ther, and give me the Comfort to look upon my self, as one, who, though he has been an offending, is now become a Returning Son. Lot not my Sins rise up against me, after once I have truly repented of them. Let them not be able to provoke thy wrath, or to trouble my Consci­ence. But make me know, that how­ever offensive I was in the ways of my Wickedness, thro' the Blood of thy Son, I am acceptable to thee in the ways of my Repentance. And that my Sins, however provoking, whilst I lay in them; give thee no more provocation, after once I re­turn from them. Yea, tho' great [Page 150] and strong in themselves, yet, that after true Repentance, they are not too great for my Saviour's Me­rits, or for thy Mercies; not too grievous for thy Goodness to forgive, or too strong for thy Grace to cure.

I am ready, O! my God, to return to thy Laws, not only in do­ing what they call for, but, if thy Will be so, in suffering for the same▪ Yea, if thou callest me to it, I desi­re not to leave the way of Righte­ousness for any hazards, but to suf­fer for it, even unto Blood. And tho' I know, O! Righteous Lord, that it is not enough to die a Mar­tyr for one precept, if I allow my self at the same time, to live a known Transgressor of others. Yet give me the Comfort to look on Mar­tyrdom, as a sort of Baptism, as thou, blessed Jesu, wast pleased to Luk. 12. 50. Mat. 20. 22. style it, when thou spakest of thine own; and, like it, to purge and wash away our Sins, if at the same time, when we are suffering for one Du­ty, we are inwardly resolved and prepared in Heart, to observe all.

Lord, in the midst of my worldly Troubles, let me have Peace with thee, [Page 151] and with mine own Conscience. And whilst thy Comforts do refresh my Soul, by thy Grace strengthening me, I shall better bear any other Misery, which thou shalt give my Enemies leave to inflict upon my Body, and persevere faithfully to serve, and patiently to suffer for thee, till thou shalt Graciously take me out of their Hands, to thine Everlasting Rest and Mercy, for Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.

6. A Prayer for Graces needful for him at the Tryal, when he is to be judged for his Stedfastness to Gods Truth or Righteousness.

O! Blessed Lord, if by thy wise ordering, [...] I meekly submit, I shall be carried from the place of Cus [...]ody to the place of Tryal, or of further Examination; do tho vouchsafe to go along with me. When I am question'd, teach me what I shall say, that I may answer so honestly, as not to offend or dis­honour thee; and so prudently, as not to prejudice my self, nor bring [Page 152] Trouble on any other Righteous Persons, for their bearing a good Affection to Righteous Things. Give me presence of mind, and clear­ness of Spirit, in appearing before all Tribunals; and wisdom and rea­diness in answering all Questions. Let my Carriage be without Fear, or Confusion, or any evil or insin­cere Arts, in all things acceptable unto thee, and becoming my Per­son and Condition.

Suffer me not to be made a Sa­crifice, by the Fears or Forgetful­ness, the mis-representations, or false Accusations of Witnesses; nor by the Fetches and false colours, of Council; nor by the partiality, or misguided Zeal of Judges and Ju­ries. Or, if thou hast otherwise de­termined, and I must fall; enable me, Good Lord, to bear thy Will. And tho' my Blood, which is shed in this Cause, be vile in the sight of Men; let it be acceptable, and of a sweet smell in thy Sight, for my Blessed Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.

7. Prayers after Sentence of Condemna­tion is past upon him, for his Stedfast­ness to the same.
EJACULATIONS.

THE Cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it, Joh. 18. 11.

Not my Will, O! my God, but thine be done, Luk. 22. 42.

Lord, I thank thee, for counting me worthy to receive this Sentence for the sake of thy Righteousness.

Lord! lay not this Sin to their Charge, Acts 7. 60.

Forgive them, for they know not what they do. Luk. 23. 34.

A short Prayer upon his receiving the Sentence.

LOrd! I meekly submit to this heavy Sentence; yea, I thank thee for it, and Glory in this shame, since it comes upon me for my Love unto thy ways.

And I humbly pray thee, to look upon their Ignorance, for their ex­cuse; [Page 154] than upon their Blood-Guilti­ness, for their punishment. If they understood the ways of thy Righte­ousness, they would not shed my Blood for keeping stedfast to the same. But nowJoh▪ 16. 2. they think, alass! to serve and please thee, by slaying me. Luk. 23. 34. Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do. And bring them timely to see their Errors, and thoroughly to repent thereof. That they, who now in their misguided Zeal for thee are my Enemies; may yet however at length be Lov­ing and Happy Sharers with me of thine Everlasting Mercies, through the Merits of our dear Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, Amen.

A Longer Prayer afterwards.

O! Righteous Lord, since thou art pleased to call me, to give Testimony to thy Righteousness with my Blood, I am content to do it. Yea, I thank thee, O! Fa­ther, that thou hast counted me worthy, to lay down my Life for thy sake: But as thou tryest me to [Page 155] the utmost, s [...] strengthen me to the utmost, I most humbly beseech thee, that in this highest, and last Service, I may shew stedfast Faith in thee, and Charity towards my Persecu­tors, and meet my Death with that constancy and devout Chearfulness, which befits one who is pasing thro' the Red Sea, to the Heavenly Canaan, and laying down his Life for thy Cause.

Tho' I stand Condemned, and vi­li [...]ied among Men, for this adherence to thy ways; yet I humbly hope, that thou, O! my God, wilt acquit, and lovingly accept me. And if I have thy Approbation, my Heart shall rejoyce therein, and account it enough for me, whatever the World thinks of me. Shew them their Error, and our Uprightness, O! Lord, in standing firm to these points, for which we suffer. But if we cannot satisfie them, that the way for which they persecute our Souls, is Innocent and Holy; let it however satisfie us, that so it is, and that so it will be [...]ou [...]d and declared by thee, before all thine elect Angels, when t [...]ou shalt appear [Page 156] in thy dreadful Majesty, to pass Sen­tence, both upon our way and theirs.

And to the clearing of that Day, and the Tryal of thy Righteous Tri­bunal, do we humbly commit our Cause and Sufferings. Where our Hope is, that thou, Blessed Jesu, wilt Graciously own and receive both, tho' they disdainfully reject them. And that thou, Righteous Father, for Jesus sake, wilt both pardon the real Guilt of our other Sins; and o­penly clear us of the fancied Guilt of these ways, wherewith our Perse­cutors do falsly asperes thy Truths, and Reproach us. Which grant, O! merciful Lord, that we may all com­fortably expect in our Lives, and comfortably find at our Deaths, for thy dear Son, and our only Saviour, Jesus Christs sake. Amen.

After this, he may at any time use such of the Prayers as he likes best, in the preceding Office for Sufferers for Righteousness, to exercise and streng­then his Faith, his Patience, his Cha­rity, or other Graces, proper for his Circumstances; or to assist him in making Intercessions for others.

8. A Prayer for Dying without Fear.

O! Almighty, and most merciful Father, perfect thy Strength in my Weakness, and support thy Frail, and most unworthy Servant, in this last and greatest Service, which I have now to pay thee, of laying down my Life, and leaving all that is dear unto me in this World, for thy Cause.

Oh! let not me dishonour the Cause and Truths, for which I suffer, by shewing any mis-becoming Fears, or unwillingness to suffer. 'Tis not my mistrust of the Righteousness of this Cause, O! my God; but the Con­science of my other Sins, and of the common Errors of my Life, from the Rule of thy Holy Command­ments, which makes me at all afraid to appear at thy Righteous Bar. But cleanse thou me from all my Sins, by the Blood of my dearest Lord, and then I may meet Death with an humble Confidence, and Triumph over it.

I know, O! blessed Lord, that when Sin and Guilt, which are the Sting of Death, are taken out; there [Page 158] is still an aversion in Nature, which is common to us all, against this Change, and which found place in our Blessed Lord himself.Mat. 26. 39. But let the Influences of thy Grace, though not wholly purge off this averseness, yet subdue and over rule it in my Spirit. Possess my Mind more with the Righteousness of the Cause, for which I dye, and with the Blessed­ness of coming to live with thee for ever after I am dead; than with the pains of Death it self. And whatever Terror it would otherwise strike into me, let it arm my Spirit, and sweeten all, to think that I die for thee, and that I die to be received into thine Eternal Mercy.

Lord! perfect and accept my Re­pentance, and pardon all my Sins, and give me Patience, and Presence of Mind to the last. Let me die like a Christian, with Faith and Charity, willingly giving up my Life for a Te­stimony to thy ways, and pouring out my Soul in Devotion towards thee, and in Prayers for my persecutors; till from my Body, it shall pass into the Arms of thy Mercy, and there [Page 159] be comfortably received by thee, thro' the Merits and Mediation of my only Saviour and Redeemer Je­sus Christ. Amen.

9. Short Prayers for the Condemned Prisoner for Righteousness, in his last Extremities, or at other times, as he sees cause.
1.

O! Merciful Father, I throw my self upon thy Mercy, and most undeserved Favour, as a poor wretch­ed Sinner. I infinitely need it, and most earnestly desire it. And I humbly hope for the same, to pardon all the Sins and Follies of my Life, and to accept this Offering of my Death, thro' the abundance of thy Grace, and thro' the sole Merits and Media­tion of my blessed Lord and only Sa­viour Jesus Christ, Amen.

2.

LOrd! now the World is casting of me off, I seek to thee to take me in. Do not thou reject me when they do, for I am thy Servant. Re­ceive me, for I am coming to thee▪ Receive me, for thou callest me. [Page 160] Receive me lovingly, O! my dear God, for I dearly love thee, and am forsaking all to injoy thee. I have nothing dearer to me in this World, than my Life; and that I am now making thee an humble Present of, and parting with it for thy Cause.

And in this Oblation of my self, be thou pleased, O! blessed Jesu, first to wash me with thy Blood, and to dress me with the Graces of thy Spirit, that I may be an holy and acceptable Of­fering. And then do thou vouchsafe, O! Holy Father, Graciously to ac­cept the same, for thy dearest Son, and my dearest Saviour Jesus Christ's sake, Amen.

3.

O! Jesu, forgive me all my Sins, and forgive all my Persecutors, and grant them timely and true Repen­tance. Now I am suffering for thy Cause let me be sure of thy Support and Assistance. Now I am [or ab [...]ut to dye, when it only draws ve­ry near; but he is not yet brought to it. brought to dye] for the ways of thy Righteous­ness, let them have Honour & Service by my Death. Make it to work God­ly Zeal and Stedfastness in thy Fol­lowers, [Page 161] and Relenting and remorse in their Persecutors, and to carry me to those most joyful and happy Man­sions, which thou hast prepared for all those, who faithfully serve and suffer for thee, in thy Fathers Kingdom. Amen.

10 A Thanksgiving for Deliverance, when he is brought upon his Tryal for the Cause of Righteousness, or for his being set at Liberty.

BLessed be thy Name, O! Al­mighty Father, who hast deli­vered me out of the Hands of those who [...]ought my Life, andPsal. 31. 8. hast set my Feet in a large Room. Thou hast Psal. 35. 10. delivered the poor from him that was too strong for him. Thou hast deliver­ed him, who served thee, and counted not his own Life so dear to him, as the shewing his Love and F [...]delity unto thy Laws. Thou hastPsal. 37. 40, delivered him, because he loved thy Name, and put his whole Trust in thee.

Lord! I will be glad, and rejoyce in thy Salvation. I will ever praise thy Love and Goodness, which is a­bundant [Page 162] in kindness and Succors, to­wards those who fear thee, and are ready to expose their own Pesons in thy Cause. I will ever magnifie thy Faithfulness, which hath not suf­fered thy Care of me to slacken, nor thy sure word and promises to fail: And I will ever Reverently and Thankfully adore thy Widom, and Power, and Justice, which turn the Councels of the Wicked into Foolish­ness, and take the crafty in their own Snares; which crown thy Servants Heads with Joy and Glory, but co­ver their Enemies with Grief and Shame; which shew plainly unto all who are willing to see the same, that it is extream folly to fight a­gainst thee, and that they are in the sure way of Safety and Happiness, who make thee their Strength, and place their chiefest Security and ad­vantage in thy good providence and gracious Promises, and in keep­ing stedfast to thy ways.

AndPsal. 70. 4. let all those that love thee, O! Lord, rejoyce and be glad in thee. Make them Triumph in thy Righ­teousness, and trust themselves to [Page 163] thy Care. But put thine Enemies. and mine in fear, that they may sin no more. And bring them to repent of their persecuting thee and thy Servants, that they may not be brought to suffer for the same in the Day of Vengeance. And keep me ever mindful, O! blessed Father, of this most merciful Deliverance, that I may spend all the Days of that Life, which thou hast now renewed to me, in thy Service; and learn there­by evermore to trust thee, yea, tho' the Pit be ready to shut her Mouth upon me; and to place my chiefest comfort and safety, in keeping sted­fast to thy Laws, which will be sure either to make my Sufferings end here in present Deliverance, or to▪ recompence them hereafter with unspeakable and everlasting Joys, throuh the Merits and Mediation of my only Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, Amen.

FINIS.

The Contents of the Office for those who suffer for Righteousness.

  • THe Introduction, Page 1.
  • Scrip­tures for Receiving Persecutions.
    • 1. As Chastisements of former Offences, p. 9.
    • 2. As Tryals of Obedience, and as bringing Losses for Righteousness. Which are to be received with.
      • 1. Contented­ness, and Thankfulness. p. 11.
      • 2. Free Confession of Christ, and his Truths. p. 13.
      • 3. Integrity and Prudent Caution, p. 14.
      • 4. Stedfastness and Constancy. p. 16,
      • 5. Faith p. 17.
      • 6. Trust in God. p. 20.
      • 7. Against Trusting more in other Things than in God, and fixing too much on Earthly Dependances. p. 22.
      • 8. With Patience. p. 25.
      • 9. With Prayers and un­wearied Devotion. p. 28.
      • 10. With Charity towards Persecutors. p. 29. and
      • 11. towards Persecuted. p. 33.
      • 12. Motives to Suffer, p. 36.
      • 13. For De­liverance from Persecution, p. 39.
      • 14. For Trust in God, to be preserved under the Same, and Delivered from them, p. 41.
      • 15. An Hymn of thanksgiving for Deliverance from Persecutions, p. 42.
Prayers under Persecutions.
  • 1. As Chastisements of Offences, a Peni­tent: Prayer, p. 47.
    • Another out of the [Page] Office of Comminat. p. 50.
  • 2, As Tryals of Obedience, and bringing Losses for Righteousness. A General Prayer for Mercyes and Qualifications, needful in Suffering Times, p▪ 51.
    • Another out of the Litany, p. 54.
Particular Prayers for,
  • 1. Integrity, and not Seeking to evil ways for Help, p. 54.
  • 2. Constancy in Persecuted Dutyes: Against being
    • 1. Tur­ned aside by worldy Dangers or Losses, p. 56.
    • 2. or Shaken in mind, or Scan­dalized,
      • 1. By Defection of others, or variety of Opinions, p. 58.
      • 2. By a Re­verence for any mens Persons, p. 59.
      • 3. For Faith, p. 61.
      • 4. for Trust in God, p. 64,
      • 5 Against Trusting more in other Things, and fixing too much on Earthly Dependances, p. 65.
      • 6. For Pa­tience,
        • 1. In easie endurance, p. 67.
        • 2. In not envying the Success of the wicked in Compassing unrighteous Devices, p. 69,
      • 7. For Prayers and unwearyed De­votion under Persecutions, p. 72.
      • 8. For Diligent Attendance on Publick Assem­blies, p. 74.
      • 9. For Godly Prudence and Caution, p. 76. And for Integrity there­with, p. 78.
      • 10. For Patience and Charity towards Persecutors, p. 79. Particular Prayers for Patience towards
        • [...]em, p. 81.
        • And for Charity, p. 84.
        • And against evil Surmises, and for Candor in Cen­ [...]ing either our Pers. or those who fall in Persec. [...]8.
      • 11. For Grace under them, to carry on a­mendment [Page] of our selves, not impatience against o­thers, p. 91.
      • 12. For Charity to the Persec. p. 93.
      • 13. For Deliverance from Persecutions, after one is wea­ried therewith, p. 95.
      • 14. Intercessions for others in Persecutions, to be used in any time, or for any Place or Persons, whose case requires or stands in need thereof;
        • 1. for Persecutors, p. 97.
        • 2. for the Persecuted, p▪ 100.
        • 3. for a Kingdom, p. 104.
        • 4. for the Church
          • 1. A general Prayer for things needful to the same in that condition, p. 107. A Collect out of the Liturgy, p. 110.
          • 2. Particu­lar Prayers,
            • 1. For its Purity and Integrity, p. 110.
            • 2. For cure of Schisms, and for Graces in divided Times, p. 114.
            • 3. For the Bishops and Clergy, under Persecutions, p. 118.
            • 4. For both Clergy and People, p. 123.
            • 5. For the Churches defence, and Deliverance from Persecutions, p. 125.
      • 15. A Thanksgiving for any comfortable Ces­sation, or for Rest and Ease from Persecution, p. 126.

The Contents of the Office for Prisoners for Righteousness.

  • Collections of Scriptures for Prisoners for Righteousness, p. 129.
  • An Hymn of Thanksgiving, fro Deliverance upon▪ a Tryal, or out of Prison, p. 133.
  • Prayers.
    • 1. A General Prayer for all Prisoners, p. 135.
    • 2. Particular Prayers of the Prisoner, who at any Time, or in any Place, is in Custody for any points of Truth or Righteousness▪
      • 1. For his Family, p. 138.
      • 2. For himself,
        • 1. For Deliverance from Enemies and Prosecutors, p. 141
        • 2. From False and Faithless Friends, when they are brought in to acc [...]se him for the same, p. 143.
        • 3. For Graces under his Sufferings and Prosecuti­ons, p. 144.
        • 4. For a mind raised above Earthl [...] Things, p. 146.
        • 5. For Peace with God, and a quie [...] Conscience, p. 148.
        • 6. For Graces needful for him at his Tryal, p. 151.
        • 7. A short Prayer on receiving the Sentence of Condemnation, p. 153. A longe upon the same, p. 154.
        • 8. A Prayer for dying without Fear, p. 157.
        • 9. short Prayers in his last Extremi­ties, p. 159.
        • 10. A Thanksgiving for Deliverance on his Tryal, or on his being set at Liberty, p. 16 [...]

An Advertisement.

THere is a Book, entituled, Of Christian Communion, to be kept on in the Unity of Christ's Church, and among the Professors of Truth and Holiness: And of the Obligati­ons, both of Faithful Pastors, to administer Orthodox, and Holy Offices; and of Faithful People, to Communicate in the same. Fitted for Persecuted, or Divided, or Corrupt States of Churches; when they are either borne down by Secular Persecutions, or Broken with Schisms, or Defiled with Sin­ful Offices and Ministrations. In three Parts, Printed Anno Dom. 1693.

ERRATA.

PAge 36. line 23. dele with, p. 59. l. 20. r. T [...]uths, p. 70. l. [...]5. r. Pharao, p. 99. l. 11. r. grew, p. 118. l. ult. r. take care of, p. 119. l. 6. r. to prevent, ib. l. 28. r. Sacraments, p. 121. l. ult. r. upon, p. 1 [...]4. l. 15. r. refine, p. 136. l. 20. r. [...]ast, p. 12 [...] l. 27. r. Suffer­ings, p. 131. l. 10. r. purposed, p. 106. l. a. r. shut up, p. 13 [...]. l. 27. r. Delights, ib. a; after free, ib. l. 28. [...], after time, p. 139. l. 2. r. her Counsel, ib. l. 24▪ r. strike, ib. l. 28. r. willingly, ib. Ma [...]g Note, l▪ 17. r. his Case. p. 140. l. 2. r. that we may, p. 142 ('risset 124.) l. 18. r. from, p. 147. l. 10. r. that I may, p. 135. l. penul [...]. r. look more. Besides others, which the Reader is desired to correct himself.

This keyboarded and encoded edition of the work described above is co-owned by the institutions providing financial support to the Text Creation Partnership. This Phase I text is available for reuse, according to the terms of Creative Commons 0 1.0 Universal. The text can be copied, modified, distributed and performed, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission.