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88. Is it not a highly iniportant duty publicly to profess the Gospel, and attend the ordinance of the Lord's Supper ?
Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.- But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach: That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shall believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart, man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth, confession is made unto salvation.- And he took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: THIS Do in remembrance of me. And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, DRINK YE ALL of it ; For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remis. sion of sins.- For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come. Mat. 10. 32, 33. Rom. 10. 8-10. Luke 22. 19. Mat. 26. 27, 28. 1 Cor. 11. 26. || Is. 45. 24, 25. and 44, 4, 5. Acts 2. 41, 42, 46, 47. and 5. 14.
What excuse have you for neglecting it? Is it one which will answer you in the Great Day?
89. What preparation is requisile to the acceptable receiving the Lord's Supper? (n)
Purge out therefore the old leayen, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us: Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ? For we being many are one bread, and one body : for we are all partakers of that one bread. Whethe er therefore ye eat or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.- Wherefore, whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. And if any man hunger, let him eat at home: that ye come not together unto condemnation. 1 Cor. 5. 7, 8. and 10. 16, 17, 31. and 11. 27, 28, 34. || Mal. 1. 7. 1 Cor. 10.1-0.2 Cor. 13. 5.
(n) See Appendix, Note N. E
Have you examined yourself impartially? Have you come to the table of the Lord with sincerity, penitence, faith, and joy ?
90. What are suitable meditations al, before, and afler the communion?
What shall I render unto the Lord for all his benefits toward me? I will take the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of the Lord. I will pay my vows unto the Lord now in the presence of all his people.- And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me, shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me, shall never thirst. I am that bread of life. I am the living bread which came down from heaven": if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flash, which I will give for the life of the world. Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I him. As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me. This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever. Ps. 116. 12–14. John 6. 35, 40, 51, 54-58. || Cant. 2. 3, 4. and 5. 1. Is. 25. 6, 9. and 55. 1. Rev. 21. 6. John 4. 14. (0)
Have you found this ordinance a feast to the soul? Has it quickened you?
91. How is an offending brother in the Lord to be treated ? Moreover, if thy brother shall trespass against thee, GO AND TELL HIM HIS FAULT BETWEEN THEE AND HIM ALONE: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him ? till seven times? Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until sey. enty times seven. But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as a heathen man and a publican.- But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner: with such a one no not to eat. Mat. 18. 15, 21, 22, 16, 17. 1 Cor. 5. 11. || Luke 17. 3, 4. Ps. 141. 5. John 13. 35. Jam. 5. 10, 19, 20.
(o) See Appendix, Note 0.
Have you never spread the faults of a brother? Can you meekly receive a Christian rebuke?
92. What are some of the consolations for the truly pious in old age ?
O God, thou hast taught me from my youth: and hitherto have I declared thy wondrous works. Now also when I am old and gray-headed, O Gop, forsake me not; until I have shewed thy strength unto this generation, and thy power to every one that is to come.- Thou, which hast shewed me great and sore troubles, shall quicken me again, and shalt bring me up again from the depths of the earth. And even to your old age I am he; and even to hoar hairs will I carry you: I have made, and I will bear; even I will carry, and will deliver you. Thou shalt come to thy grave in a full age, like as a shock of corn cometh in in his season. Ps. 71. 17, 18, 20. Is. 46. 4. Job 5. 26. || Eccl. 12. 3–7. Ps. 73. 26.
Will not the Scriptures treasured in memory in youth be useful in old age? Would they not then be comforting to the truly pious ?
93. What are the privileges of the righteous in the trying hour of death?
The wicked is driven away in his wickedness : but the righteous hath hope in his death.- Mark the perfect man, and behold the upright: for the end of that man is peace.- Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil:for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.- O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law, But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory, through our Lord Jesus Christ. Prov. 14. 32. Ps. 37. 37. and 23. 4. 1 Cor. 15. 55–57. || Ps. 116. 15. and 73. 26. 2 Cor. 4. 16. Acts 7. 55, 56, 59, 60.
How desirable to die the death of the righteous! Will you not seek to live like them ?
94. Are the spirits of the just aclire, perfected in holiness and happiness, in the interim belueen their death and the resurreclion of their bodies ?
Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it.- For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the
Lord. We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be ab sent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.. Whom the heaven must receive, until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began. Eccl. 12. 7. 2 Cor. 5. 1, 6, 8. Acts 3. 21. || Luke 23. 43. Phil. 1. 23. Heb. 12. 23. i Cor. 13. 12.
What conceptions can you form of the soul's knowledge, separate from the body? Fiow will you think and feel them?
95. To what society are the righteous admitted in ETERNITY ?
But ye are come unto Mount Zion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels, (p.) To the general assembly and church of the first-born, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, And to Jesus the Mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel. Heb. 12. 22–24. || Rev. 21. 2, 21–27. and 22. 14, 15. and 5. 8–11.
How glorious that society! How soon you will be there if a Christian! How irremediable your loss if you are not gathered there!
96. What is the portion of the righteous beyond the grare?
And I heard a voice from heaven, saying unto me, Write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth : Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them. Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his temple: and he that sitteth on the throne shall dwell among them. They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more ; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat. For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters : and God shall wipe away all tears froin their eyes. Rev. 14. 13. and 7. 15–17. Ps. 73. 24. 1 Pet. 1. 4.
Is not this portion worth all the toils and sacrifices which religion demands ? Are you often thinking of this portion ?
97. What is the song of the redeemed?
Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory, and honour, and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.- And they sang a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by
(v) See Appendix, Note P.
thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation ; And hast made us unto our God kings and priests : and we shall reign on the earth. And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever. Rev. 4. 11. and 5. 9, 10, 13. || and 1. 4-6. Ps. 115. 1. 1 Cor. 1. 31.
Do you sing praises to God? Have you learned the song of heaven?
98. Will the cause of Christ finally prerail throughout the earth?
Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession.He shall have dominion also from sea to sea, and from the river onto the ends of the earth. They that dwell in the wilderness shall bow before him; and his enemies shall lick the dust. The kings of Tarshish and of the isles shall bring presents: the kings of Sheba and Seba shall offer gifts. Yea, all kings shall fall down before him: all nations shall serve him.- And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the Lord's house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall he exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it.For from the rising of the sun, even unto the going down of the samé, my name shall be great among the Gentiles ; and in every place incense shall be offered unto my name, and a pure offering: for my name shall be great among the heathen, saith the Lord of hosts. Ps. 2. 8. and 72. 8__11. Is. 2. 2. Mal. 1, 11. Is. 49. 6. and 42. 4. and 60. 1-12. and 62. 2. Mat. 24. 14. Rev. 20. 2-4.
Which will you do? aid its triumphs, or be crushed by them? There is no alternative between these.
99. What is the character and doom of Antichrist?
And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh, is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come ; and even now already is it in the world.- Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.- And he shall speak great words against the Most High, and shall wear out the saints of the Most High, and think to change times and laws : and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.And the king shall do according to his will; and he shall exalt himself, and magnify himself above every god, and shall speak