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For Regeneration.

For Cha

rity to

wards our Enemies.

1

II.

God, who haft us thy only begotten Son to take our Nature upon him, and as at this Time to by born of a pure Virgin; grant that I, being regenerated and made thy Child by Adoption and Grace, may daily be renewed by thy Holy Spirit, through the fame our Lord Jefus Chrift, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the fame Spirit, one God, World without End, Amen.

III.

Thoughts

Each me, Obleffed Jefus, to lay aside all angry my bittereft Enemies, because thou requireft it, and haft fhewn me the Way by thy own perfect Example; who tookeft Pity upon fallen Man, when he was in a State of Enmity against thee; and without Importunity or Application didft admit him to Terms of Pardon or Reconciliation, and didft pray for thy Perfecutors under the Senfe and Smart of thofe Sufferings they inflicted, in the very Agony and Bitterness of Death. Teach me therefore to bear all their Malice with Meeknefs and Patience, and to return all Offices of Charity for the Affronts and Indignities they offer to me. Make me placable and ready to forgive, and candid in interpreting all the Marks and Signs of their Repentance. And do thou, O bleffed Jefus, forgive them, and recover them to a right Senfe of Things, and make them ready to be reconciled; that I being enabled by thy Grace to tread in the Steps of thy firft Martyr, St. Stephen, may receive that. Pardon from thee, which I readily grant to them, and without which I am undone to all Eternity. Grant this, O Lord Jefus, to whom with the Father and the Holy Ghoft, be all Honour and Glory, World without End. Amen.

IV.

Perfecu

tors.

Racious God, fhew Mercy, I humbly intreat For our thee, to all those that perfecute me, though they neither shew Juftice nor Mercy towards me: Pity their Ignorance, remove thofe Prejudices that blind their Eyes, fweeten and mollify their Spirits, that they may no longer be carried away with Malice and bitter Paffions: Difpofe them by Humility and Meekness, and by a fincere Love of Truth and Righteousness, to a joyful Reception and Acknowledgment thereof; that they may lay afide their Errors, and inftead of perfecuting, refolutely profess thy holy Religion. And by whatever Means thou fhalt think fit to work their Recovery, let their Repentance prevent thine eternal Vengeance, through the Merits of our deareft Lord and Saviour Jefus Chrift. Amen.

CHAP. VII.

Saint John the Evangelift,
December 27.

Q. WHAT Festival doth the Church celebrate this
Day?

A. That of St. John the Evangelift.

Q. What was St. John's Original?

A. As to his Country, he was a Galilean, the Mat.iv.21. Son of Zebedee and Salome, younger Brother to St. James, with whom he was brought up in the Trade of Fishing, and with whom he was called to be a Difciple and an Apoftle of our Saviour. He is thought by the Ancients to be far the youngeft of all the Apostles, being under thirty Years old when he was firft called to that Dignity. And his great Age

feems

Mark iii. 17.

feems to prove as much; for dying about an hun-
dred Years old in the third of Trajan, he must
have lived above feventy Years after our Saviour's
Suffering.

Q. What new Name did St. John receive from
his Mafter?

A. He with his Brother James were ftyled Boanerges, that is, the Sons of Thunder. This Surname is thought more especially to be attributed to St. Febe, because he fo clearly taught the Divinity of Jefus Chrift in fublime Words, and delivered the Myfteries of the Gofpel in a profounder Strain than the reft of the Evangelifts; upon which Account he is affirmed by the Ancients not fo much to Speak as to thunder.

Q. What particular Marks had St. John of our
Saviour's Efteem.

23.

A. He was not only one of the three Difciples which our Saviour admitted to the more private John xiii. Paffages of his Life, but was the Difciple whom Jefus loved, who lay in our Saviour's Bofom at the Pafchal Supper, the moft honourable Place of being next him, who was made Ufc of by St. Peter, as the Difciple moft familiar with our Saviour, to Ver. 24. enquire whom he meant, when he faid, one of them Should betray him; and to whom our Lord comJohn xix. mitted the Care of his Mother, the blessed Virgin, when he was leaving the World.

26, 27.

Q. What may we learn from this?

A. Our Saviour hath by his Example and Authority fanctified the Relation of Friendship, and thofe clofer Bonds of Amity, which natural Affection or fpecial Inclination may form between particular Perfons, without any Prejudice to a general Charity.

Q. How did St. John fhew his Sense of this particular Kindness of our Saviour towards him?

A. By Returns of Kindness and Conftancy;

ftaying

J

staying with him when the reft of his Difciples deferted him. To this Caufe may be attributed his Zeal to punish the Samaritans that affronted his Lord; and perhaps alfo his Defire to fit on our Saviour's right Hand in his Kingdom, that he might have a nearer Enjoyment of him in his Glory. And hence, likewife, though upon the Surprife of our Saviour's Apprehenfion he fled with the reft of the Apoftles, yet he quickly recovered himself, and confidently entered into the High Prieft's Hall, and followed our Saviour through the feveral Stages of his Trial, and at last attended upon him at his Crucifixion, owning him, as well as being owned by him, in the thickeft Cloud of his moft inveterate Enemies; and having received the blessed Virgin into his Houfe, according to our Saviour's Recommendation, he treated her with Duty and honourable Regard, and made her a principal Part of his Charge and Care.

Q. With which of the Apoftles did St. John feem to have the greatest Intimacy?

A. With St. Peter. Upon the News of our Saviour's Refurrection, they two hafted together to the Joh.xx.23. Sepulchre. It was to Peter that St. John gave the John xxi. Notice of Chrift's appearing at the Sea of Tiberias Ver. 21. in the Habit of a Stranger: And it was for St. John that St. Peter was folicitous what should become of him. After the Afcenfion of our Lord, we find them both together going up to the Temple at the Hour of Prayer; both preaching to the Aas iii, 1. People, and both apprehended and thrown into Prison, and the next Day brought forth to plead Chap. v. eir Caufe before the Sanhedrim. And both fent down by the Apofiles to Samaria, to fettle the Plantations Philip had made in thofe Parts, where they A&ts viii. baffled Simon Magus.

14.

Q. What other Particulars do the Scriptures mention concerning St. John?

A. Nothing

Eufeb. lib. 3. c. I.

A. Nothing more than what is recorded of him in Conjunction with his Brother James; upon whofe Festival they are taken Notice of.

Q. Where did St. John exercife his Apoftolical Office?

A. The Province that fell to his Shate was Afia: Though it is probable he continued in Judea till after the bleed Virgin's Death; which is reckoned to have happened about fifteen Years after our Lord's Afcenfion; otherwise we must have heard of him in the Account St. Luke gives of St. Paul's Journeys in thofe Parts. He founded the Churches of Smyrna, Pergamus, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadel phia, Laodicea; but his chief Place of Refidence was Ephefus; where St. Paul had many Years before fettled a Church. Neither is it thought he confined his Miniftry merely to Afia Minor; but that he preached in other Parts of the Eaft; probably Parthia, his firft Epiftle being anciently entitled to the Parthians.

Q. How was St. John perfecuted by the Emperor Domitian?

A. He was represented to the Emperor as an eminent Affertor of Atheism and Impiety, and a public Subverter of the Religion of the Empire. By the Emperor's Command the Proconful of Afia fent him bound to Rome, where he received a very barbarous Treatment; he was caft into a Cauldron of Tertul. de boiling Oil, or rather Oil fet on Fire; but the divine Providence, which fecured the three Hebrew Captives in the

Præf.
Hær.c.36.

this holy lames of a burning Furnace, brought

this holy Man fafe out of what one would have thought an inevitable Ruin.

Q. How was be farther treated by the Emperor? A. Domitian being difappointed, confidered not the Miracle; but prefently orders him to be banished into the Ifland of Patmos, in the Archipelago, where he remained feveral Years, inftructing the Inhabitants

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