Saturday, March 19, 2011

Lent II: Called unto holiness

ALMIGHTY God, who seest that we have no power of ourselves to help ourselves; Keep us both outwardly in our bodies, and inwardly in our souls; that we may be defended from all adversities which may happen to the body, and from all evil thoughts which may assault and hurt the soul; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. [Thomas Cranmer]
WE beseech you, brethren, and exhort you by the Lord Jesus, that as ye have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please God, so ye would abound more and more. For ye know what commandments we gave you by the Lord Jesus. For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication: that every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour; not in the lust of concupiscence, even as the Gentiles which know not God: that no man go beyond and defraud his brother in any matter: because that the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also have forewarned you and testified. For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness. He therefore that despiseth, despiseth not man, but God, who hath also give unto us his Holy Spirit. [I Thessalonians IV]
ALMIGHTY GOD, by whose mercy I am now about to commemorate the death of my Redeemer, grant that from this time I may so live as that His death may be efficacious to my eternal happiness. Enable me to conquer all evil customs. Deliver me from evil and vexatious thoughts. Grant me light to discover my duty, and Grace to perform it. As my life advances, let me become more pure, and more holy. Take not from me Thy Holy Spirit, but grant that I may serve Thee with diligence and confidence; and when Thou shalt call me hence, receive me to everlasting happiness, for the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. [Samuel Johnson, 1773]