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findest there forbidden? This is the way to be found in God's statutes, that thou mayest never be ashamed, Ps. cxix. 80. Thirdly, Observe the special duties that thy heart is most against, and the special sins that 'tis most inclined unto ; and see whether it be truly resolved to perform the one and forego the other. What sayest thou to thy bosom sin, thy gainful sin? What sayest thou to costly, and hazardous, and flesh-displeasing duties? If thou haltest here, and dost not resolve, by the grace of God, to cross thy flesh, and put to it, thou art unsound, Ps. xviii. 23, and cxix. 6.
Direct. X. Let all this be completed in a solemn covenant betwixt God and thy soul, Ps. exix. 106, Neh. x. 29. For thy better help therein take these few directions.
First, Set apart some time, more than once, to be spent in secret before the Lord.
1. In seeking earnestly his special assistance, and gracious acceptance of thee.
2. In considering distinctly all the terms or conditions of the covenant, expressed in the form hereafter proposed.
3. In searching thine heart, whether thou art sincerely willing to forsake all thy sins, and to resign up thyself, body and soul, unte God, and his service ; to serve him in holiness and righteousness, all the days of thy life.
Secondly, Compose thy spirit into the most serious frame possible, suitable to a transac. tion of so high importance.
Thirdly, Lay hold on the covenant of God, and rely upon his promise of giving grace and strength, whereby thou mayest be enabled to perform thy promise. Trust not to thing own strength, to the strength of thine owo: resolutions, but take hold on his strength.
Fourthly, Resolve to be faithful; having engaged thine heart, opened thy mouth, and subscribed with thy hand unto the Lord, resolve in his strength never to go back.
Lastly, Being thus prepared, on some convenient time set apart for the purpose, set upon the work, and in the most solemn manner possible, as if the Lord were“ visibly present before thine eyes, fall down on thy knees, and spreading forth thine hands to ward heaven, open thine heart to the Lord in these or the like words:
O MOST dreadful God! for the passion of thy Son I beseech thee, accept of thy poor; prodigal, now prostrating himself at thy doors I have fallen from thee by mine iniquity, and am by nature a son of death, and a thousand fold more the child of hell, by my wicked
praetice; but of thine infinite The terms of grace, thou hast promised our commun- grace to me in Christ, if I will ion are either but turn to thee with all my from which or heart: therefore upon the call to which of thy gospel, I am now come
in, and, throwing down my weapons, submit myself to thy mercy.
And because thou requirest, as the condi. tion of my peace with thee, that I should put
The terms away mine idols ; and be at from which we defiance with all thine ene must turn, sin, mies, which I acknowledge I satan,theworld have wickedly sided with, and our own against thee; Í here from the righteousness, bottom of my heart renounce which must be them all, firmly covenanting thus renounc- with thee, not to allow myself ed.
in any known sin, but conscientiously to use all the means
that I know thou hast prescribed for the death and utter destruction of all my corruptions. And whereas I have formerly, inordinately and idolatrously, let. out my affections upon the world, I do here resign up my heart to thee that madest it, humbly protesting before thy glorious Majesty, that it is the firm resolution of my heart; and that I do unfeignedly desire grace from thee, that when thou shalt call me hereunto, I may practise this my resolution, through thy assistance to forsake all that is dear unto me in this world, rather than to turn from thee to the ways of sin; and that I will watch against all its temptations, whether of prosperity, or adversity, lest they should withdraw my heart from thee; beseeching thee also to help me against the templations of satan, to whose wicked suggestions I resolve, by thy grace, never to yield myself a servant. And be cause my own righteousness is but menstruous rags, I renounce all confidence therein, and acknowledge that I am of myself a hope
less, helpless, undone creature, without righteousness or strength.
And for as much as thou The terms hast, of thy bottomless mercy, to which we offered most graciously to me must turn are wretched sinner, to be again either ultimmy God, through Christ, if I ate or mediwould accept of thee; I call ate. heaven and earth to record this day, that I do bere solemnly avouch thee for the Lord my God; and with all possible veneration, bowing the neck of my soul under the feet of thy most sacred majesty, I do here take thee, Lord JEHOVAH, Father, Son, and Holy The ultimate Ghost, for my portion, and is God the chief good; and do give up Father, Son, myself, body and soul, for thy &Holy Ghost, servant, promising and vowing ucho must be to serve thee in holiness and thus accepted. righteousness, all the days of
And since thou hast ap- The mediate pointed the Lord Jesus Christ terms are ei. the only means of coming un- ther princito thee, I do here, upon the pal, or less bended knees of my soul, ac. principal. cept of him, as the only new
The princiand living way by which sin- pal is Christ ners may have access to thee; the Media. and do hereby solemnly join tor, who must wyself in marriage covenant thus be emto him.
braced. O blessed Jesus, I come to thee hungry and hardly bestead, poor, and wretched, and mis.
erable, and blind, and naked; a most loathsome, polluted wretch, a guilty, condemned malefactor, unworthy for ever to wash thc feet of the servants of my Lord, much more to be solemnly married to the king of glory: .but sith, such is thine unparalleled love, I do here with all my power accept thce, and do take thee for my head and husband, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, for all times and conditions, to love, honor, and obey thec before all others; and this to the death. I embrace thee in all thy offices : I renounce --mine own unworthiness, and do here, avow thee to be the Lord my righteousness: I re. nounce mine own wisdom, and do here take thee for mine only guide : I renounce mine own will, and take thy will for my law,
And since thou hast told me that I must suffer if I will reign, I do here covenant with thee to take my lot, as it falls, with thee, and, by thy grace assisting, to run all hazards with thee; verily supposing that neither life nor death shall part between thee and me.
And because thou hast been Theless prin- pleased to give me thy holy cipal are the laws as the rule of my life, and laws of Christ the way in which I should which must be walk to thy kingdom, I do thus observed. here willingly put my neck
under thy yoke, and set my shoulder to thy burden ; and subscribing to all thy laws, -as holy, just and good, I solemnly take them as the rule of my words, thoughts and actions; promising that though · my flesh contradict and rebel, yet I will en