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might eat no Corn in the green Ear. And at this Feaft they paid their Firflings and Tithes of Cattle. At the Feast of Pentecoft, when Harvest was ended, Lev. xxiii. they brought two wave loaves of their new Corn, 17, 22. at which Time alfo they paid Tithes of Corn, fo much as was threshed; and a Tribute alfo of a Freewill offering of their Hand. To this may be referred the Precept of not gathering their Land clean, but that fomething fhould be left to the Poor to glean; which was a fecondary Offering to God himself. At the Feast of Tabernacles they offered Firft-fruits and Tithes of Wine and Oil, which was the Offering of that Season. And in the Commandment of this Feaft, we also find a Precept of not gathering the Deut. Grapes and Fruit clean, in behalf of the Poor.
Q. How far are Chriftians obliged to any Imita
tion in this Particular?
A. They are certainly bound not to appear before the Lord with empty Hands. It is not enough to give at other Times, but it is a proper Piece of the . Worship to be practifed at holy Scafons. For the Actions of Men in holy Affemblies are not like their private Actions at other Times; for all the Actions in public are to be accounted as one Action of the whole Body, every Prayer, the Prayer of all as one. Whatfoever Worship God requires of any one alone, the fame he requires alfo of all met together as one, being God of the Body as a Church, as well as of any one Member as a Chriftian. In reference to Offerings in holy Affemblies, thus St. Paul ordains, thus the primitive Chriftians 1 Cor. xvi. practifed, as is plain from Juftin Martyrand Irenæus. Q. How are Festivals profaned?
A. When they are not regarded nor distinguished from Common Days; when they are made Inftruments of Vice and Vanity; when they are spent in Luxury and Debauchery; when our Joy degenerates into Senfuality, and we express it by Intem
perance and Exccfs. And it is a very great Aggravation of our Sins, at fuch Times, to abuse the Memory of the greatest Bleffings, by making them Occafions of offending God.
Q. What are the Advantages of a ferious Obfervation of Festivals?
A. It teftifies our great Regard to the Inftitutions of the Church, and our Obedience to our Heb. xiii. fpiritual Superiors, to whom we ought to fubmit, as to thofe that watch for our Souls. It fixes in our Thoughts the great Myfteries of our Redemption. It fills our Hearts with a thankful Senfe of God's great Goodness. It raises our Minds above the World, and inures us to a fober Frame and Temper of Soul. It kindles a prudent Zeal and Feryour in performing the Offices of Religion; and is very apt to produce a Readiness to do or fuffer any Thing for the Name of Jefus.
who haft established in
Church Paftors, and Teachers, and Governors, for the perfecting of the Saints, for the Work of Eph. iv. the Miniftry, for the edifying of the Body of Chrift; make me careful to obferve all those Inftitutions, which are enjoyed for these admirable Ends; and always to esteem Days fet apart for thy Worship, and dedicated to thy Service, as a great Relief to the Infirmity of my Nature, which is not capable of an uninterrupted Contemplation of thee. Let the Affairs of this Life, nor my Eagernefs in obtaining the good Things of it, fo far engross my Thoughts, as to make me neglect thofe happy Opportunities of working out my own Salvation. Let not the Love of Pleasure prevail upon me to confume them in fenfual Enjoyments; but grant that my
For a right Obferva. tion of
my Rejoicing may be accompanied with Temperance and Moderation, and difpofe my Mind, by all the Refreshments of my Body, to ferve thee with greater Diligence and Cheerfulness all my Days. Make me conftant, at thefe Holy Scafons, in attending thy public Worship, and let me enter thy Houfe with recollected Thoughts, compofed Behaviour, and with a thankful and devout Temper of Mind. Let me hear thy Word with ferious Attention, and with a particular Application of it to the State of my own Soul. Let me approach thy Altar with fervent and heavenly Affections, and with firm Refolutions of better Obedience. Let me commemorate the Mysteries of my Redemption with profound Humility, with exalted Thoughts of thy wonderful Goodness, and with thankful Acknowledgments of thy great Love demonftrated to the Sons of Men. Let the mortified Lives of thy Saints raise me above the Pleafures of Sense; and let the Pattern of their Piety and Devotion, their Humility and Charity, their Meckness and patient Sufferings, be always fo lively imprinted upon my Mind, that I may tranfcribe their Example in my Life and Converfation: That thus obferving thefe Days of Reft here below, I may celebrate an Eternal Reft with thee hereafter in thy Heavenly Kingdom, through Jefus Christ our Lord. Amen.
LORD God, in whofe Sight the Death of For the
thy Saints is precious, and though their De- Imitation parture is taken for Mifery, yet is their Hope full Saints. of Immortality; and having been a little chaftifed, they are now greatly rewarded, let the Memory of what they endured, fupport thy Servants who are engaged in Combats and Trials here below. Abate the Power and Malice of their Enemies; that all
those who hate and perfecute thy Church, may be brought to Repentance, or mifcarry in their cruel Designs against it; that thy Name may be celebrated to all Generations; that thy Kingdom and thy Coming may be haftened; that thy Saints may obtain the Confummation of their Blifs, by the Refurrection of their Bodies, and receiving the Crown of Righteousness, which thou haft prepared for all that put their Trust in thee; and that I with them may praise thy Name for ever and ever. Amen.
The Lord's Day.
Q. WHAT Part of our Time bath God appro priated to his immediate Service?
A. One Day in Seven, which he hath commanded to be kept Holy. And we ought the rather to pay Obedience to Divine Authority in this Particular, because it hath liberally indulged the remaining Part of our Time to our own Ufe. Q. What do you mean by keeping a Day boly? A. Setting it apart for the Exercises of Religious Duties, both in Public and Private; abstaining from the Works of our ordinary Calling, or any other worldly Affairs and Recreations, which may hinder our Attendance upon the Worship of God, and are not reconcileable with folemn Affemblies, and may defeat thofe Ends for which the Day was separated from common Ufes.
Q.What Day was anciently fet apart to this Purpofe? 3. A. The Seventh: For God having in fix Days made Heaven and Earth, the Sea, and all that in them is, he rested the seventh Day, and hallowed it. Q. What mean you by God's refting from his
A. That the Creation of all Things was finished, and the World entirely made; this refting of God being spoken after the Manner of Men; and implieth not any Wearinefs in him, for the Crea- Ifaiah xl. tor of the Ends of the Earth fainteth not; neither is 21. weary. It was by the Ancients made the Symbol of the Reft of the Juft from all their Labours; when all Grief, Sorrow, and Sighing, fhall fly away, and God fhall be all in all.
Q. Why was the seventh Day, called Saturday, commanded to be obferved by the Jews?
A. To be a Sign to teftify what God they wor- Ezek. xx, shipped, whereby they profeffed that Jehovah, and 20. no other, was the God of Ifrael, and confequently was an admirable Inftitution to fecure them from Exod. Idolatry. For, by fanctifying the feventh Day, xxxi. 18after they had laboured fix, they avowed themfelves Worshippers of that only God, who created the Heaven and the Earth, and having spent fix Days in that great Work, refted the feventh Day; and therefore commanded this fuitable Diftribution of their Time, as a Badge that their religious Service was appropriated to him alone. And by fanctifying that feventh Day, namely Saturday, they profeffed themselves Servants of Jebovab their God, in a Relation and Refpect peculiar and proper to themselves, viz. that they were Servants of that God who redeemed Ifrael out of Deut. v. the Land of Egypt, and out of the House of Bondage. 15. For upon the Morning-watch of that very Day they kept for their Sabbath, he overwhelmed Pha Taob, and all his Hoft, in the Red Sea, and faved Ifrael that Day out of the Hand of the Egyptians.
Q. How far, and in what Manner, doth the Obfervation bind Christians?
A. The Chriftian, as well as the Jew, after fix Days spent in his own Works, is to fanctify the Seventh, that he may profefs himself thereby a Servant