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Sect. 8. The purposes of the Saints to call on God,
and their grateful acknowledgments of the benefits thereby obtained, and their supplications for his mercy and support, according to their circumstances of need.
As for me, I will call upon God; and the Lord shall save me. Evening and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud; and he shall hear my voice. I will cry unto God most high; unto God that performeth all things for me. He shall send from heaven, and save me. The Lord will command his lovingkindness in the day-time, and in the night his song shall be with me, and my prayer unto the God of my life. I love the Lord, because he hath heard my voice, and my supplications. Because he hath inclined his ear unto me, therefore will I call upon him as long as I live". The sorrows of death compassed me, and the pains of hell got hold upon me; I found trouble and sorrow. In my distress I called upon the Lord, and cried unto my God; he heard my voice out of his temple, and my cry came before him, even unto his ears'; and he inclined unto me, and heard my crys. Depart from me all ye workers of iniquity; for the Lord hath heard the voice of my weeping; the Lord hath heard my supplications; the Lord will receive my prayer". If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me; but verily God hath heard me; he hath attended to the voice of my prayer. Blessed be God, which hath not turned away my prayer, nor his mercy from me'. Who delivered us froin so great a death, and doth deliver ; in whom we trust, that he will yet deliver us; you also helping together by prayer for us *.
Hear me when I call, O God of my righteousness; thou hast enlarged me when I was in distress. Have mercy upon me, and hear my prayer'. Give ear to $ 8. * Psalm lv. 16, 17. o Psalm lvji. 2, 3. Psalm cxvi. 1, 2.
Ps.lxvi. 18, 19, 20. 2 Cor. i. 10, 11.
c Psalm xlii. 8.
Psalm xviji, 6.
& Psalm xl. 1.
e Psalm cxvi. 3.
iny words, O Lord ; consider my meditation. Hearken to the voice of my cry, my king, and my God; for unto thee will I pray. My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O Lord; in the morning will I direct my prayer ,unto thee, and will look up”. Have thou respect unto the prayer of thy servant, and to his
supplication, O Lord my God, to hearken unto the cry, and to the prayer, which thy servant prayeth before thee ". Give ear to my prayer, O God; and hide not thyself from my 'supplications. Attend unto me, and hear me; I mourn in my complaint, and make a noise o. Let my prayer come before thee ; incline thine ear unto my cry. For my soul is full of troubles, and my life draweth nigh unto the grave P. But unto thee have 1 cried, O Lord, and in the morning shall my prayer prevent thee? Hear my cry, O God, attend unto my prayer. From the end of the earth will I
cry unto thee; when my heart is overwhelmed, lead me to the rock that is higher than I'. Make haste unto me; give ear unto my voice, when I cry unto thee. Let
my prayer be set forth before thee as incense ; and the lifting up of my hands, as the evening sacrifice'. Hide not thy face from me in the day wben I am in trouble; incline thine car unto me; in the day when I call, answer me speedily'. I stretch forth
hands unto thee; my soul thirsteth after thee as a thirsty land. Hear me speedily, O Lord, my spirit faileth". Mine eye mourneth by reason of affliction ; Lord, I have called daily upon thee, I have stretched out my hands unto thee?. Attend unto my cry, for I am brought very low?
'. Let me not be ashamed, O Lord, for I have called upon thee? Hear my prayer, O Lord, and give ear unto 'my cry; hold not thy peace at my tears.. Unto thee will I
Unto thee will I cry, O Lord my rock ; lest if thou be silent to me I become like them that go down into the pit. Hear the voice of my supplications, when I cry unto thee; when I lift up my
m Psalm v. 1, 2, 3.
n 1 Kings, viii. 28.
Psalm cii. 2.
o Psalm lv. 1, 2.
Psalın lxi. 1, 2.
Psalm cxliii. 6, 7. » Psalm xxxi. 17.
hands toward thy holy oracle.
Thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee o. In the day of my trouble I will call upon thee; for thou wilt answer med. I have called upon thee, for thou wilt hear me, O God; incline thine ear unto me, and hear my speech. In the day when I cried thou answeredst me; and strengthenedst me with strength in my soul. Thou drewest near in the day when I called upon thee. I cried to thee, O Lord; and unto the Lord I made my supplication. Hear, O Lord, and have mercy upon me; Lord be thou mine helper. Thou hast turned for me my mourning into dancing; thou hast put off my sackcloth, and girded me with gladness". I said in my baste, I am cut off from before thine eyes; nevertheless, thou heardst the voice of my supplications when I cried unto thee'. For this shall every one that is godly pray unto thee, in a time when thou mayest be found k. Lord, thou hast heard the desire of the humble ; thou wilt prepare their heart, thou wilt cause thine ear to hear
Examples of Jacob, 'Hezekiah, Daniel, &c. “ Prayer is one of the most important acts and ordinances of religion. And the Scriptures abound with striking examples of its power and efficacy; in so much, that what the Apostle to the Hebrews hath said concerning faith, that by it the saints wrought righteousness, obtained promises, &c. may be also said concerning prayer.'
« Of this kind is Jacob's remarkable interview at Peniel.” Jacob was left alone; and there wrestled a man with him until the break of day. And he said, Let me go, for the day breaketh. And he said, I will not let thee go, except thou bless me. And he said unto him, What is thy name? And he said, Jacob. And he said, Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel; for as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed. And he blessed him there. “ To this event the prophet Hosea refers." By his strength he had power with God; yea, he had power over the angel, and prevailed; he wept and made supplication unto him; he found him in Bethel, and there he spake with us. Even the Lord God of hosts, the Lord is his memorial".
* Psalm xxviii. 1, 2.
Psal. 1. 17.
• Psalm lxxxvi. 5.
o Psalm lxxxvi. 7.
Psalm xxxii. 6.
“We have a striking contrast betwixt the blasphemous pride of Sennacherib, when threatening destruction to Jerusalem, and the humble devotion of good Hezekiah. He prayed before the Lord. The Lord heard; he destroyed the mighty host of that haughty monarch, and sent him home with shame.”
“ Daniel gives a very extraordinary instance of the efficacy of prayer. When Nebuchadnezzar had made the extravagant demand on his wise men, to recall a dream of his, which he himself had forgot; and at the same time required the interpretation of it.” . Then Daniel went to his house, and made the thing known to Hananiah, Michael and Azariah, his companions; that they would desire mercy of the God of heaven concerning this secret; that Daniel and his fellows should not perish with the rest of the wise men of Babylon. Then was the secret revealed unto Daniel in a night vision ?
“ The same prophet affords us another memorable example of the same kind. When anxious about the fate of his countrymen the Jews, he tells us,” I set my face unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and supplications, with fasting, and sackcloth, and ashes; and I prayed unto the Lord my God, and made my confession 9* And whiles I was speaking, and praying, and confessing my sin, and the sin of my people Israel, and presented my supplication before the Lord my God; yea whiles I was speaking in prayer, even the man Gabriel
m Gen. xxxi. 24, 26–29.
» Hos. xi. 3, 4, 5.
, whom I had seen in the vision at the beginning, being caused to fly swiftly, touched me about the time of the evening oblation, &c'.
“ It is very remarkable, that the fervent prayers of an Italian soldier were the happy means of communicating to him the blessings of the Gospel, that he became the first fruits of the Gentile world.” Cornelius, a devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, who gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God alway; he saw in a vision, evidently, about the ninth hour of the day, an angel of God coming in to him, and saying unto him, Cornelius. And when he looked on him he was afraid, and said, What is it, Lord ? And he said unto him, Thy prayers and thine alms are come up for a memorial before God. And now send men to Joppa, and call for one Simon, whose sirname is Peter; he shall tell thee what thou oughtest to do'.
" When Peter was come, he made this just reflection on that extraordinary event,” Of a truth I perceive, that God is no respecter of persons; but in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him
“ Time would fail me to tell of the ardent prayers made, and the gracious returns obtained by Moses, Joshua, Samuel, David, Elisha, Isaiah, Hezekiah, Peter, John, Paul, &c. I shall conclude this subject by observing, that the bright example given by our great Lord and Saviour of habitual devotion and ardent prayer, was imitated by all bis faithful Apostles and Disciples. It was by this mean they were animated to preach the Gospel, and to suffer for the name of Jesus f. By
9 Dan. ix. 3, 4.
Acts, x, 1-6. * See Dan. ix. 4--19.
Dan, ix. 20, 21.
• Acts, X. 34, 35. + See Acts, iv. 23–31, and 2 Cor. vii.--X.