OUR Father, we bless Thy name that we can say from the bottom of our hearts, “Abba, Father.” It is the chief joy of our lives that we have become the children of God by faith which is in Christ Jesus, and we can in the deep calm of our spirit say, “Our Father, which art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name; Thy kingdom come; Thy will be done in earth as in heaven.”
Lord, we thank Thee for the liberty which comes to our emancipated spirit through the adoption which Thou hast made us to enjoy. When we were in servitude the chains were heavy, for we could not keep Thy law; there was an inward spirit of rebellion; when the commandment came it irritated our corrupt nature and sin revived, and we died.
Even when we had some strivings after better things, yet the power that was in us lusted into evil, and the spirit of the Hagarene was upon us; we wanted to fly from the Father’s house; we were wild men, men of the wilderness, and we loved not living in the Father’s house.
O God, we thank Thee that we have not been cast out. Indeed, if Thou hadst then cast out the child of the bondwoman Thou hadst cast us out, but now through sovereign grace all is altered with us. Blessed by Thy name. It is a work of divine power and love over human nature, for now we are the children of the promise, certainly not born according to the strength of the human will, or of blood, or of birth, but born by the Holy Ghost through the power of the Word, begotten again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, children of the Great Father who is in heaven, having His life within us. Now, like Isaac, we are heirs according to promise and heirs of the promise, and we dwell at home in the Father’s house, and our soul is satisfied as with marrow and fatness, and our mouth shall praise Thee as with joyful lips.
O God, we would not change places with angels, much less with kings of the earth. To be indeed Thy sons and daughters — the thought of it doth bring to our soul a present heaven, and the fruition of it shall be our heaven, to dwell for ever in the house of the Lord, and go no more out, but to be His sons and His heirs for ever and ever.
Our first prayer is for others who as yet are in bondage. We thank Thee, Lord, that Thou hast given them the spirit of bondage and made them to fear. We are glad that they should be brought to feel the evil of sin, to feel the perfection of Thy law, to know something of the fiery nature of Thy justice, and so to be shut up unto salvation by grace through faith. But, Lord, let them not tarry long under the pedagogue, but may the schoolmaster with his rod bring them to Christ.
Lord, cure any of Thy chosen of self-righteousness; deliver them from any hope in their own abilities, but keep them low. Bring them out of any hope of salvation by their own prayers or their own repentance. Bring them to cast themselves upon Thy grace to be saved by trusting in Christ.
Emancipate them from all observance of days, weeks, months, years, and things of human institution, and bring them into the glorious liberty of the children of God that Thy law may become their delight, Thyself become their strength, their all, Thy Son become their joy and their crown. We do pray this with all our hearts.
Lord, deliver any of Thy children from quarreling with Thee. Help us to be always at one with our God. “It is the Lord; let Him do what seemeth Him good,” and blessed be His name for ever and ever.
God, bless our country, and the sister country across the flood, and all lands where Thy name is known and reverenced, and heathen lands where it is unknown. God, bless the outposts, the first heralds of mercy, and everywhere may the Lord’s kingdom come and His name be glorified.
Glory be unto the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost; as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.