The CHRISTIAN SOLDIER'S DUTY; the Lawfulness and Dignity of his Office; and the Importance of the Protestant Cause in the British Colonies, stated and explained.

A SERMON, Preached April 5, 1757. IN CHRIST-CHURCH, [...] To the first Battalion of his Majesty's ROYAL AMERICAN REGIMENT at the Request of their COLONEL and OFFICERS.

By WILLIAM SMITH A.M. [...] Philadelphia.

To which is annexed, A PRAYER on the same Occasion.

PHILADELPHIA: Printed and Sold by JAMES CHATTIN. 1757 [Price One Shilling]


TO JOHN STANWIX, Esq COLONEL-COMMANDANT of the first Bat­talion of HIS MAJESTY'S ROYAL AME­RICAN REGIMENT, whereof His Excel­lency JOHN EARL OF LOUDOUN is COLONEL in CHIEF; GOVERNOR of, and MEMBER of PARLIAMENT for, the City of CARLISLE; AND DEPUTY QUARTER-MASTER-GENERAL of all HIS MAJESTY'S Forces, raised or to be raised: As a sincere Testimony of Esteem for His public Character, and Friendship for His Person, this SERMON, preached and pub­lished at His Request, is

HUMBLY DEDICATED, By His most Obedient Servant, WILLIAM SMITH.


LUKE III. Verse 14.

And the SOLDIERS demanded of him like­wise, saying—master, And what shall we do? he said unto them, do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely, and be content with your wages.

THIS chapter contains an ac­count of the Preaching of saint John the Baptist; who, being called of God in the wilderness, and duly commissioned for his high office, came into all the country about Jordan, [Page 2] preaching to the people the BAPTISM of RE­PENTANCE for the REMISSION of SINS.

THE more thoroughly to awake their at­tention and evince the necessity of his doc­trine, he appears in the most striking cha­racter; being, as was prophesied concern­ing him, the voice of one crying in the wil­derness; prepare ye the way of the Lord; make his paths straight! Every valley shall be filled, every mountain and hill shall be [...]; the crooked [places] shall be [...] straight; the rough ways smooth; and all [...] shall see the SALVATION of GOD!

THESE words allude to a known custom of great Kings, who, when they undertook any long journey, were wont to send forth their messengers before them; proclaiming it among the people to make their way plain. Now as the Jews, at this time, daily looked for the Coming of their KING or PROMISED MESSIAH, such a proclama­tion, from to extraordinary a person, [Page 3] crying out to clear the way, for that the Salvation of God was at hand, could not fail to excite their curiosity, and interest their affections!

EVERY heart was accordingly seiz'd with an instant hope of beholding the DESIRE OF NATIONS; with whom they expected to share Crowns and Empire and Temporal Glory. Nay, they began to muse in their hearts whether John himself were the Christ , or only his fore-runner. In either case, they were eager to embrace the Baptism which he preached; as artful Courtiers will strive to recommend themselves to the Graces of an expected Master. Hence, a Multitude of them came forth, to be baptiz'd of him.

JOHN, who saw their carnal views, is not too forward in conferring his Baptism upon them, without duly instructing them [Page 4] in the nature and conditions of it. O gene­ration of vipers! says he; who hath warned you to flee from the wrath which is to come? Nevertheless, if you are really desirous to escape it, and to be admitted to the blessings promis'd in the Messiah, do not deceive yourselves in thinking those blessings may be derived to you by inheritance. They are not of a Carnal but a Spiritual nature. Nor will it avail you any thing to say, we have Abraham to our father; and are thereby the children of Promise. For I say unto you that unless you bring forth fruits meet for repentance; you can by no means inherit those PROMISES—For God is able of these Scenes to raise up Children to Abraham; and in them shall his Promises be made good, if not in you. And you must now, without delay, make your choice. For the ax is already laid to the root of the trees; and every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is to be [...] down and cast into the fire.

[Page 5]SUCH an alarming denunciation struck the people with double astonishment; and they pressed still more eagerly about John, crying—what shall we do then; to escape this Ruin and obtain this Salvation? He answered and said unto them, he that hath two coats, let him impart to him that hath none. And he that hath meat let him do likewise: herein strenuously recommending the uni­versal practice of that diffusive Charity and Benevolence, which are a main foundation of Moral virtue, and the most acceptable service we can render to our adorable Creator!

AMONG others who pressed forward, on this occasion, came the Publicans, a set of men infamous for their illegal Exactions upon the people, crying—Master, what shall we do? John, who knew their character, strikes boldly at their capital vice; charging by their hope of Salvation and their dread of Ruin,—exact no more than what is ap­pointed you by law; for how shall you [Page 6] begin to be good, till you cease to be unjust?

LAST of all came the SOLDIERS demand­ing of him likewise, saying—and what shall we do? he said unto them do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely, and be content with your wages.

SUCH are the words which were recom­mended to me as the subject of this discourse. And had I been left to my own choice, I could not have selected any more suitable, nor more becoming a Gospel-minister to explain, on such an occasion. For being delivered by divine Inspiration, at a most important period; namely, when the Soldiers them­selves earnestly requested to know, by what means they might escape the threatned Fire of God's wrath, and obtain salvation thro' the Messiah, we may be sure they imply in them the fundamental parts of the CHRISTIAN SOLDIERS DUTY; so far at least as relates to that particular character.

[Page 7]I shall therefore proceed upon them, in their natural order. With diffidence, how­ever, I enter upon my subject. I know many of you to be men of distinguished un­derstanding; conscious of the dignity of your own character, and of the glorious cause wherein you are engaged. And nothing but your own express desire, could give me courage to offer my thoughts concern­ing any part of your duty. But, being invited thereto, I shall proceed to the utmost of my abilities, as far as the time will permit. And, whatever may be the execu­tion, I can safely say that I bring with me a heart panting for the Public—and for you!

FIRST, then, the Christian-soldier is to do VIOLENCE to no man. There are two sorts of violence which a Soldier may be guilty of. One is against those who are lawfully vested with Command over him. This is commonly stiled Mutiny, and is a crime of the most atrocious nature; seldom to be expiated but by the DEATH of the offender. And as God is a God of Order, it must be peculiarly odious to him.

[Page 8]ANOTHER sort of Violence, which a Sol­dier may be guilty of, is against his Fellow-subjects. This is that Violence more im­mediately meant in the text; the original word there, signifying, the shaking or ter­rifying a man, so as to force money from him, thro' fear. This we find expressly forbid by the Spirit of Christianity, under pain of forfeiting the Salvation of God. And we may glory to say that it is also forbid by the mild Spirit of the British Constitution!

OUR Soldiery are armed by the laws of their country, and supported by the com­munity; not to command, but to serve, it; not to oppress, but to protect, it. Should they, therefore, turn their sword against those from whom they derive their authority, and thus violate the just rights even but of one Freeman, who contributes to their support—what a complication of guilt would it imply? It would be Treachery! It would be Ingratitude! Nay it would be Parricide!

[Page 9]AS for the Tyrants of mankind, let them (belying heaven and pretending an authority from God!) let them lead forth their armed Slaves to plunder, to harass and to destroy those, to whom they owe Protection! Let them fill those lands with Violence and Blood, which they ought to fill with Bles­sing and Joy! verily I say unto you they shall have their reward. For, trust me, such actions are odious to Heaven, repug­nant to the Gospel; and God will certainly avenge his own cause!

HAPPY for us, we rejoice under milder influences! our gracious Sovereign, thro' a long and prosperous reign, has never, in any instance, offered Violence to the rights of his subjects; nor permitted it in his servants. The amiable nobleman, placed over us in our present distress, has long been distinguished as a patron of Justice, and a true friend of British Liberty. And, tho' appointed to the most difficult Command, with a great army under him, among a people long accustom'd to a profound peace, jealous of their Liberties, and some of them [Page 10] even unreasonably prejudiced against all force and arms; yet such has been his conduct, that he has happily reconciled jarring interests, and supported the Military, without violating the Civil, power.

HENCE, general harmony has diffused itself thro' all the parts of his extensive Command. As a signal instance of this, it will be but justice to mention you, gentlemen, of this Battalion which I have now the honour to address. You have been among us for several months. You were at first but a raw unform'd corps; and from your manner of being quartered out in small parties among the inhabitants of this city, disorders might have been expected. But quite the reverse has happened. No deeds of Violence have been offered. No com­plainings have been heard in our streets. Your conduct has done honour to your­selves; done honour to your Officers in general, and to your worthy Commandant in particular; whose name is thereby become dear to us. And our best wishes will attend [Page 11] him and them and you, whithersoever you are destined.

ALL I shall add on this head is, to beseech you, by your hopes of the Gospel­promises, to persevere in the same dutiful inoffensive behaviour towards your fellow-citizens, in all parts of your future conduct. And, as you can never be led to deeds of Violence by any authority appointed over you, let it never be said that your own choice or rashness engaged you in them; so as to subject you to the severe and shame­ful punishments denounced against them, by the laws of your country in this world, and by the Gospel of Christ in the world to come.

THUS I have endeavoured to give the true meaning of the words—do violence to no man. I know there are some who affect to under­stand them in a more unlimited sense; as containing a general prohibition of all Force and Arms whatsoever. But, in this, they are neither warranted by Scripture nor [Page 12] Reason. Nay, the very reverse is evi­dent from the text itself.

THE Soldiers, whom saint John addresses, received wages for Fighting and Bearing arms against the enemies of their country. He expressly enjoins them to be content with those wages. But this he never would have done, if the Service, which they performed as the condition of the wages, had been that identical Violence, which he so strongly prohibits in the former part of the verse. They must indeed be very daringly bold, who can charge the Spirit of God with such an absurdity!

BUT the fact is that—to support Justice, to maintain Truth, to defend the goods of Providence, to repress the wild fury of lawless Invaders, and by main force, if possible, to extirpate Oppression and Wickedness from the earth—this has never been accounted Violence in any language or [Page 13] country. On the contrary, it is Duty to the public, and Mercy to thousands!

IF Society is of God's appointment, every thing essential to its subsistence must be so too; for he that ordains the End, ordains the Means. But how shall Society subsist, if we are to submit to the un­righteous encroachments of every restless Invader? if we are tamely to be plundered, tortured, massacred and destroy'd by those who covet our possessions! has God given us his Gospel, endowed us with reason, and made us fit for Society, only to put us in a worse condition than the roaming Savage, or the Beast of prey?

WE all allow, in common cases, that a public Robber may be subdued by force or death, if other means fail. We grant also that those who invade private property may be compelled to restitution at the bar of Justice. But if independent states have injured us, to what Bar shall we cite [Page 14] them? who shall constrain them to appear at our summons? or, if they should appear, who shall oblige them to abide by the sentence? open Force, then, must be the dernier resort. And strange it is that those who are often so litigious in cases of private right, should affect to be most passive in what concerns the Rights of the Community!

IN short, if human Societies are insti­tuted for any end at all, independent States may not only defend their Rights when invaded; but if they are already deprived or defrauded of them, they may demand restitution in the loudest and most impor­tunate manner; even by calling for it in Thunder at the very gates of their enemy. This is often the shortest and most mer­ciful method. Nor is it doing Violence to our neighbours, but justice to ourselves, and to the cause of Right, Liberty, Virtue and public Safety; which would otherwise be left unavoidably to suffer.

[Page 15]IT were indeed sincerely to be wished that the Gospel of the blessed Jesus might have such an universal influence on the lives of all men, as to render it no more necessity to learn the art of war. But alas! this is a degree of perfection not to be hoped for in the present state of things, and only to be look'd for in the kingdom of universal Righteousness. Were all men arrived to such a degree of goodness as to render force unnecessary, then also the Magistracy, the Laws and every thing else belonging to particular Societies in this world, would be a needless Institution. But as long as particular Societies are of any use, so long will Force and Arms be of use. For the very end of such Societies is to unite the Force of Individuals, for obtaining safety to the whole.

WHAT I have already said will con­vince every reasonable person that the words—do violence to no man—were never meant as a general prohibition of all Force and Arms; so often necessary in this embarassed scene of things. As for those [Page 16] who from views of interest, pretended scruples of conscience and I know not what prejudices of education, still shut their eyes against the clearest light, I do not pretend to offer arguments for their conviction.

IF the barbarities that have been committed around them; if the cries of their murdered and suffering brethren; if their country swimming in blood and involved in an expensive war—if these things have not already pierced their stony hearts and convinced their deluded reason, that their Principles are absurd in Idea and criminal in Practice, I am sure any thing I might say farther, would have but little weight. I shall only beg leave to remind them, that they will have this cause to plead one day more before a Tribunal, where subterfuges will stand them in no stead; and where it will be well if they are acquit­ted, and no part of the blood that has been spilt is required [...] their hands.

[Page 17]HAVING found it necessary to dwell so long on the former part of the text, I shall be very brief on what remains. The Christian-soldier is forbid, in the SECOND PLACE, to accuse any man falsely.

TO circumvent, to bear down, or to take away, the character of another, for the sake of revenge, profit or preferment, is indeed a crime of the most unpardonable nature. It seldom admits of any reparation, and strikes at the very root of all peace and faith and society among men. Surely, then, among a society of Soldiers, whose strength consists in their Harmony, and whose peculiar character is their Honor and Veracity, such a pernicious vice should be discouraged in an eminent degree, as tending to their immediate ruin, and odious both to God and Man.

IN the THIRD and last place, the Christian-soldier is to be content with his wages. This is also a very essential duty. Nothing ought to be more inviolable among men than the performance of their [Page 18] Covenants. Now, between the British State and its Soldiery, there is a Covenant of the most sacred nature. They volun­tarily enlist into a certain service for cer­tain wages. These wages are sufficient for a comfortable subsistence. The British Government has Mercy in its whole na­ture, and all its appointments are liberal. The wages of our common Soldiery are almost equal to those of the inferior officers in many other services. Surely then, for them, above all others, to be discontented with these wages, to neglect the duty an­nexed to them, or to be faint-hearted in its performance, would argue the highest baseness. It would be breach of Faith, breach of Honor, and a total want of every generous affection.

MOREOVER, to be content with one's wages implies also a faithful application of them to the uses for which they are given. They are not to be spent in riot and intempe­rance, but in keeping the body neat, clean, healthy and vigorous for the dis­charge of its duty. Nastiness and sloven­liness [Page 19] in dress or behaviour are sure marks of a mean and dastardly temper. The man who disregards the care of his own person, which is the Image of his Maker, can have neither spirit nor grace nor virtue in him. It will be almost im­possible to exalt his groveling Soul to the performance of any great or heroic action.

AND as for Intemperance, in a Soldier, a Vice of more ruinous consequence can­not well be imagined; or rather it is a complication of all vices. For, not to say that it generally leads to those acts of Vio­lence so fully mentioned above, it is in itself a manifest violation of every tie between the Soldier and his country. The Soldier, by the terms of his enlistment, consigns his health, strength and service to the public, in consideration of his receiving certain wages. Now for him to spend those wages in enervating or destroying that very health and strength for which they are given—what is it? It is robbery of the public! nay Desertion itself [Page 20] is not a greater crime; and nothing but the mercy of our laws, in compassion to the frail­ties of human nature, could have made the punishment of the one less than that of the other. For a Soldier may as well be found absent from his post, or asleep on it, as be found on it in a condition which renders him unfit for the duties of it. Indeed, Discontent, Sloth, Murmuring and Intem­perance, have been the bane of many a powerful army, and have often drawn down the divine displeasure, by giving them up to certain ruin.

UPON the whole then, we may conclude from the text, that the particular Duty of Christian Soldiers consists chiefly in— Obedience to those who are appointed to command them; a respectful inoffensive behaviour to those who support and main­tain them; strict Honor and unshaken Veracity towards one another; Tempe­rance, Sobriety, Cleanliness and Content­ment in their private character; and a [Page 21] steady, bold and chearful discharge of whatever service their King and Country may require of them.

I said that these things constitute the particular duty of Soldiers, considered as such. But here let it be remembered, that no parti­cular injunctions of this kind to any particular order of men as such, exempt them from the general precepts of the Gospel. Tho' the text be address'd particularly to the Soldiers, con­sidered in that character; yet as they are also Men and Creatures of God, they are equally called (in the eleventh verse for instance) to the practice of universal Benevolence and Charity with the whole body of the people, whereof they are a part, and to whom that verse is immediately address'd.

THUS I have finish'd what I propos'd from the text. And now, Gentlemen Officers, you will permit me to address the remainder of this discourse more par­ticularly to you. I know you love your [Page 22] King and Country. I know you regard those men under your command, and would wish to see them shining in the practice of those virtues I have been recom­mending. But yet, after all, this must, in a great measure, depend upon yourselves.

IF, then, you would desire to have any tie upon the Consciences of these men; if you would wish to see them act upon principle, and give you any other hold of them than that of mere Command—let me, Oh let me beseech you, to cultivate and propagate among them, with your whole influence and authority, a sublime sense of Religion, Eternity and Redeeming-love! Let the bright prospects of the Gospel of Jesus be placed full before their eyes; and let its holy precepts be inculcated fre­quently into their hearts!

BUT oh! above all things, let the ado­rable name of the everlasting Jehovah be kept sacred among you! Glorified angels fall prostrate before it! The very devils themselves tremble at it! And shall poor [Page 23] worms of the earth; dependent on a pulse for every breath of Being; surrounded with dangers innumerable; marching forth in the very shadow of death; to day here, and to-morrow in Eternity—shall they dare to blaspheme and tear asunder that holy name, before which all nature bends in adoration and awe? shall they forget their absolute dependence upon it for all they have, and all they hope to have?

ALAS! when the Name of our great Creator is become thus familiar, and prosti­tuted to every common subject, what Name shall we invoke in the day of danger? to what refuge shall we fly amidst the various pressures of life? to whose mercy shall we lift up our eyes in the hour of death? and into whose bosom consign our souls, when we launch forth into the dark precincts of Eternity?

ONCE more, then, let the Name of the Lord be holy among you; else have you no sure foundation for Virtue or [Page 24] Goodness; none for dependence upon Providence; none for the sanctity of an Oath; none for Faith, nor Truth, nor Obedience for Conscience-sake.

NEXT to Religion and a sovereign re­gard to the honor and glory of your great Creator, it will be of the utmost im­portance to cultivate, in yourselves and those under you, a noble, manly and ra­tional Enthusiasm in the glorious cause wherein you are engaged; founded on a thorough conviction of its being the cause of Justice, the Protestant-cause, the cause of Virtue and Freedom on earth.

ANIMATED by this sublime prin­ciple, what wonders have not Britons performed? how have they risen, the terror of the earth; the Protectors of the oppressed; the avengers of Justice, and the scourge of Tyrants? how have the Sons of Rapine and Violence shrunk before their united ardors, confounded and o'erthrown? [Page 25] witness ye Danube * and Sambre , and thou Boyn crimson'd in blood! hear witness and say—what was it that fired our WILLIAMS and our MARLBOROUGHS to deeds of immortal renown? what was it that steel'd their hearts with courage, and edged their swords with victory? was it not, under God, an animating conviction of the justice of their cause, and an unconquerable passion [Page 26] for Liberty and the purity of the Prote­stant-Faith ?

AND do you think now, Gentlemen, that the cause wherein you are engaged is less honorable, less important; or that less depends on the sword you draw? No: I pronounce it before Men and Angels that from the days of our ALFREDS, our ED­WARDS and our HENRIES downwards, the British-sword was never unsheathed in a more glorious or more divine cause than at present!

LOOK round you! behold a country▪ vast in extent, merciful in its climate, exu­berant in its soil, the seat of Plenty, the garden of the Lord! behold it given to us and to our posterity, to propagate Virtue, [Page 27] to cultivate useful Arts, and to spread abroad the pure evangelical Religion of Jesus! behold Colonies founded in it! Protestant Colonies! free Colonies! British Colonies! behold them exulting in their Liberty; flourishing in Commerce; the Arts and Sciences planted in them; the GOSPEL preached; and in short the seeds of happiness and glory firmly rooted, and growing up among them!

BUT, turning from this prospect for a moment, look to the other hand! direct your eyes to the westward! behold popish Perfidy, French Tyranny and savage Barba­rity, leagued in triple combination, ad­vancing to deprive us of those exalted bles­sings, or to circumscribe us in the possession of them, and make the land too small for us and the increasing multitude of our posterity!

SAVE me, ye Powers to whom the Interests of Britain and Liberty are dear! save me, what a sight do I behold? 'Tis odious to the view, and horrible to relate! See, in the van, a set of human monsters hounded out against us from [Page 28] their dark lurking places; brandishing their murderous knives; sparing neither age nor sex: neither the hoary Sire, nor the hope­ful Son; neither the tender Virgin, nor the helpless Babe. Ten thousand Furies follow behind and close up the horrid scene! grim Superstition, lording it over Conscience! bloody Persecution, shaking her Iron scourge! and gloomy Error, seducing the unwary Soul! while, in the midst, and all around, is heard the voice of Lamentation and Mourning and Woe; Religion bleeding un­der her Stripes! Virtue banished into a Corner! Commerce bound in Chains and Liberty in Fetters of Iron!

BUT look again, Gentlemen! between us and those evils, there is yet a space or gap left! and in that gap, among others*, you stand; a glorious Phalanx! a royal Regiment a ROYAL AMERICAN REGIMENT! a Regiment formed by the [Page 29] best of Kings for the noblest of purposes the first that has ever been formed express­ly, as the scourge of Tyrants and the avengers of Liberty, in this new world! and formed for these important ends to continue, not for the present only, but probably in all time coming!

AND now is not my assertion proved? Consider'd in this light, does it not appear to yourselves that never, from the first of time, was a body of Britons engaged in a more glorious cause than you are at present: nor a cause on whose issue more depends? you are not led forth by wild Ambition, nor by ill-grounded claims of Right, nor by false notions of Glory. But, consign'd to you is the happiness of the present age and of late posterity. You wear upon your swords every thing that is dear and valuable to us as men and as Christians. And upon your success it depends, perhaps, whether the pure Religion of the Gospel, streaming uncorrupted from its sacred source, rational, moral and divine, together with Liberty [Page 30] and all its concomitant blessings, shall final­ly be extended over these American Re­gions; or whether they are to remain in the bondage of Idolatry, and darkness of Error for ever!

IN such an exalted and divine cause, let your hearts betray no doubts nor unmanly fears. Tho' the prospect may look dark against us, and tho' the Lord may justly think fit to punish us for our sins, yet we may firmly trust that he will not wholly give up the Protestant-cause; but that it is his gracious purpose, in due time, to add to the REFORMED CHURCH OF CHRIST, the HEATHEN for an inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for a possession.

GO forth, then, with humble boldness▪ as men conscious that their designs are ap­prov'd of God. And oh! if perchance your feet shall touch those fields that have already drank in the blood of the Slain, and have beheld our brethren expiring in all the variety of woe—gently, oh gently [Page 31] tread among their uncoffin'd Bones! drop a tear over their scattered Ashes; and give a moment's pause for reflection! It will touch the heart with tenderness, and be a fruitful source of much useful thought. It will give fresh vigor to every arm, and new ardor to every breast!

TO see one of our species mangled and torn in pieces is horrible! to see a Briton, a Protestant, our Friend, our Neighbour, so used is more horrible still! but to think that this should be done, not to one but to thousands; and done in an unguarded hour; and done without provocation; and done with all the aggravation of infernal torture; and done by Savages; and by Savages whom we have cherished in our bosom; and by Savages stirred up against us contrary to the faith of Treaties; and stirred up by men professing the name of Christians—good heaven! what is it? words cannot paint the anguish of the thought; and human nature startles from it with accumulated horror!

[Page 32]RISE Indignation! rise Pity! rise Pa­triotism! and thou Lord God of Righte­ousness, rise! avenge our bleeding cause! support Justice, and extirpate Perfidy and Cruelty from the earth! Inspire those men, who go forth for their King and Country, with every spark of the magnanimity of their Forefathers! The same our cause, the same he its issue! Let our enemies know that Britons will be Britons still, in every clime and age! and let this American world behold also thy Salvation; the work of the Lord for his Inheritance! Even so; rise Lord God of Hosts! rise quickly! Amen and Amen.

SUNG as follows, PSALM 94.

O God to whom Revenge belongs,
Thy vengeance now disclose;
Arise thou Judge of all the Earth,
And crush our haughty Foes.
How long, O Lord, shall sinful men
Their solemn Triumphs make;
How long their wicked actions boast
And insolently speak?
Not only they thy Saints oppress,
But unprovok'd they spill
The Widow's and the Stranger's [...]
And helpless Orphans kill!
[Page 33]

A PRAYER On the same Occasion.

FATHER of all! Preserver of all! Judge of all! thou first and best of Beings! all praise, all glory be ascribed unto thy holy name; who hast made us capable of seeking and loving thee; and hast invited us to fly to the throne of thy Mercy for aid and direction in all our Undertakings, and deliverance in all our dangers. Surely that heart must be lost to every nobler feeling that does not see and adore thy unspeakable Goodness to­wards the guilty Sons of men—

We see and we adore it, O thou King of Nations! struck with the transcendent majesty of thy Perfections, conscious of our own Unworthiness, and relying on the merits of thy ever blessed Son, we prostrate ourselves in the dust, before thy glorious presence; fearing, yet loving; trembling, yet adoring!

[Page 34]WE confess, O Lord! that thou hast done wonderful things for us and for our Fathers! thou hast distinguished us among all the nations of the earth, by giving us the purest of Religions and the best of Go­vernments *. We have indeed received a goodly heritage, and have often been sig­nally supported by the power of thy glory, in the days of our danger! But alas! while thou hast been heaping favors upon us, we have been multiplying transgressions against thee! Infidelity, Luxury and Immorality have increased among us, and spread them­selves far abroad. Thou has visited us for these things; but we have neither learned Righteousness from thy Judgments, nor Gra­titude [Page 35] from thy Deliverances. And justly might our unworthiness provoke thee to remove from us our inestimable privileges; both civil and religious.

YET still, tho' we have sinned against Heaven and before thee, we will trust in thy paternal mercy—and we know in what we trust. Thine ear is not heavy that it cannot hear, nor thy hand shortened that it cannot save; and there is sufficiency in the blood of the Redeemer! suffer us there­fore, O merciful Father, in this day of our visitation, to throw ourselves upon the merits of the ever-living Jesus; hum­bled under thy chastisements; confessing and bewailing our past offences, both public and private; and beseeching thy divine Grace to revive among us a spirit of pri­mitive Piety, Integrity and Virtue!

BUT oh! above all, and as the founda­tion of all, inspire us with an awful reve­rence of thy glorious majesty. Give us [Page 36] an unshaken Loyalty to our gracious So­vereign; and a prevailing love and vene­ration for our excellent Constitution, civil and religious! And as often as we are cal­led more immediately to appear in defence of it, O grant that, in such a glorious cause, we may betray no unmanly fears; but act the part of BRITONS and FREEMEN; go­ing forth, devoted either to death or victory; and scorning a Life that is to be purchased at the expence of the PROTESTANT RELI­GION and our NATIONAL PRIVILEGES!

BLESS and long preserve our rightful sovereign KING GEORGE! Bless his royal family and all his alliances! surround him with Councillors of a true uncorrupted British Spirit; men sagacious to discover, and stedfast to pursue, their country's Good, Guard him from all conspiracies against his person and government; whether secret or more open. May his administration be steady! steady in the cause of Liberty! [Page 37] steady in promoting the public welfare! steady in oppossing the enemies of our Zion! and may the gates of hell never prevail against it!

FOR this end, O Lord, give success to his Arms both by Sea and Land, and favor our righteous cause! give Courage, Con­duct and Integrity to our Commanders, and those who turn the battle from our gates. In a particular manner, bless his excellency the Earl of LOUDOUN our Commander, and all those who go sorth with him for the PROTESTANT-CAUSE, in this AMERI­CAN WORLD! make them instrumental in preserving among us, and spreading abroad to the remotest parts of the habitable world, the precious Blessings of Liberty and the pure EVANGELICAL RELIGION OF JESUS! [...] that stillest the raging of the waves and the tumults of the people, set bounds to the rage of our implacable enemies; and bring this expensive war to the speedy issue of a safe and honorable peace!

[Page 38]FINALLY, O Lord God, to whose un­controulable power the elements are subject, grant us mild and seasonable weather; and let neither seed-time nor harvest fail us. Let our pastures he cloath'd with flocks, and our vallies covered with corn. May we soon be delivered from all our fears, and peace be restored in all our borders. And may these men, who now go forth for us, be returned safe to our friendship and to our bosoms, crowned with triumph and victory; so that they and we may together serve and adore thee without fear, in Holiness and Righteousness before thee, all the remain­der of our days! Hear us O heavenly Father, for thy son JESUS CHRIST'S sake, to whom with thee and the Holy Ghost, one GOD, be the Kingdom and the Power and the Glory, world without end. AMEN.


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