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And again the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel; and he moved David against them to say, Go number Israel and Judah

Q. Si How many ways may God be said to tempt evil ?

A. (1.) By withdrawing his grace, either common, or special; 2 Chron. xxxii. 31. Howbeit, in the business of the ambassadors of the princes of Babylon, who fent unto him to ényuire of the wonder that was done in the land ; God left him to try him, that he might know all that was in his heart. (2.) By permitting Satan, and wicked men, to tempt; 2 Sam. xxiv," 1. He moved David against them, to say, Go and number Israel and Judah. With i Chron. xxi. 1. Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David. Matth. iv. I. Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into che wilderness, to be tempted of the devil. (3.) By presenting occasions in his providence, which he knows will be abused to fin; as in the fall of Adam, the hardening of Pharaoh, &c.

Q. 6. What do we beg in this petition ?

A. We beg, that we may not any of these, or any other ways, whereby the holy God may be faid to lead into temptation, be led thereinto ; Pfalm cxli. 1. Incline not my heart to any evil thing, to practise wicked works with men that work iniquity, and let me not eat of their dainties. Psalm xix. 13. Keep back thy fervant also from presumptuous fins; let them not have dominion over me: Then shall i be upright, and I Thall be innocent from the great tranfgression.

Q. 7. What is meant by evil ?

A. Some understand it of the devil, but the best meaning is fin, which is the evil of evils, and makes the devil evil, and is the worst of evils the devil can bring upon us, and is usually fo understood in fcripture; Psalm xcvii. 10. Ye that love the Lord, hate evil. Ifa. i. 16. Cease to do evil. Amos v. 15. Hate the evil, and love the good. Rom. xii. 9. Abhor that which is evil.

Q. 8. What is meant by deliverance from evil? 'A. That if God fees meet to permit us to be tempted by Sa. tan, and the wicked without, or by our own hearts within, to fin; or occasionally, by his providence; that he will not leave us, but undertake for us, that we may not be led into fin thereby, but by his grace be made more than conquerors. Pfalm li. 10. Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Psalm cxix. 133. Order my steps in thy word, and let not any iniquity have dominion over me. According to his : VOL. VIII.

prömise; 1 Cor. X. 13. But God is faithful, who will not suffer
you to be tempted above that ye are able. 2 Cor. xii. 9. And
he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee ; for my
strength is made perfect in weakness.
. Q. 9. What is the first inference?

A. That sin is the worst of evils.
Q. 10. What is the fecond inference ?

A. That without God's grace we can never withstand, but fhall be overcome by every temptation ; 2 Cor. iii. 5. Not that we are sufficient of ourselves, to think any thing as of ourselves; but our sufficiency is of God. John xv. 5. For without me ye can do nothing.

Q. 11. What is the third inference?

A. That we must do all we can to keep ourselves from temptation, and to engage the grace of God with us in temptation, by prayer, by pleasing the Spirit of God, by looking to Jefus, &c.

M.. Of the Conclusion. Quest 107. TITHat doth the conclusion of the Lord's pray

er teach us? A. The conclusion of the Lord's prayer, which is, [For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever; Amen.] teacheth us, to take our encouragement in prayer from God only; and in our prayers to praise him ; afcribing kingdom, power, and glory to him; and in testimony of our desire, and af furance to be heard, we say, Amen.

Q. 1. Why is the conclusion joined to the particle For ?

A. To teach us, that therein are included arguments, or reasons to press God withal, and to prevail with him for audio ence. " Q. 2. But is it lawful to argue with God, and to urge him with reasons in prayer?

A. It is not only lawful, but expedient, yea, highly commendable ; as is seen in the saints prayers. In Moses's, Numb. xiv. 13. And Moses said unto the Lord, Then the Egyptians fhall hear it, (for thou broughtest up this people in thy might from among them.) Ver. 19. Pardon, I beseech thee, the ini- ' quity of this people, according unto the greatness of thy mercy, and as thou hast forgiven this people from Egypt, even until now. In Joshua's, chap. vii. 3. And Joshua faid, Alas ! O Lord God; wherefore haft thou at all brought this people over Jordan, to deliver us into the hand of the Amorites, to destroy us? Would to God we had been content, and dweli on the other side Jordan. Ver. 9. For the Canaanites, and all

the inhabitants of the land shall hear of it, and shall environ us round, and cut off our name from the earth : And what wilt thou do unto thy great name ? In Afa's, 2 Chron. xiv. II. ' And Asa cried unto the Lord his God, and faid, Lord, it is nothing with thee to help, whether with many, or with them that have no power. Help us, O Lord our God, for we rest on thee; and in thy name we go against this great multitude. O Lord, thou art our God; let no man prevail against thee. In Jehofhaphat's, 2 Chron. xx. 6.- And said, O Lord God of our fathers, art not thou God in heaven? And ruleft not thou over all the kingdoms of the heathen ? And in thine hand is there not power and might, so that none is able to withstand. thee? And Hezekiah's, 2 Kings xix. 15 And Hezekiah pray-, ed before the Lord, and said, O Lord God of Israel, which dwellest between the cherubims; thou art the God, even thou alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth: Thou hast made heaven and earth. Ver. 19. Now, therefore, O Lord our God, &c.

Q. 3. But to what purpose, can we think to prevail with God, by our arguments and importunities?

A. They are not used, as though we would put God in remembrance of any thing, or would prevail with God to do that for us, which he is unwilling to give...

Q. 4. Why then?

A. For our own profit, for the enlarging of our own hearts, for the exciting of our fervency, for the exerting of faith, hope, zeal, charity, &c. in prayer; and so to prepare ourselves for the mercy, that we may the more gratefully receive it, and the more fruitfully employ it. ...

Q. 5. How many arguments are in this conclusion ?
A. Three.
Q. 6. From whence are they taken ? . ,
A. From God's kingdom, from his power, and from his glory,

Q. 7. What kingdom is here meant?.. · A. God's universal, essential, and absolute kingdom; where. in may be, and is involved, his special kingdom over the church.

Q. 8. What are the arguments from hence? ..

A. Because all that we can pray for in this prayer, is for the advancement and perfecting of this his kingdom, by the destruction of all persons and things that oppose it, and the completion of his dominion over all his subjects; therefore he would grant all these requests. :

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Q. 9. What is another ?

A. Because he being such an absolute Lord and sovereign, has an undeniable right, and unquestionable authority, to give and grant all we ask, and to effectand bring to pass all we beg : For all persons and things are his own, and at his disposal. Mat. xx. 15. Is it not lawful for me to do what I will with my

own?

Quļo. What is meant by power ?

A. God's effential, infinite, irresistible power, whereby he can do what he pleases į Pfalm cxxxv. 6. Whatsoever the Lord pleafed &c.

Q. 11. What is the argument from hence ?

A. That we ask nothing from God, but what he can do with infinite ease, in despite of all the oppofition that hell, earth, and heart can make to the contrary; Philip. jii. ult. According to the working, &ç. Eph. iii. 30. Now unto him that is able,

0. 12. What is meant by glory?

4. Not hiş essential glory, which no nian, or angel, can eyer apprehend.

Q. 13. What glory then ?

A. His declared and acknowledged glory, even the accomplishment of all his decrees by his provideụce ; and then the love, the adoration, and the praises, the self-dedications of angels and saints, returned to him for the same. T . 14. What is the argument or motive from hence? · A. That seeing the substance of every request does directly tend to, and will perfectly end in, this glory of God, when they are fully answered; therefore he would gradually an- {wer them while we are here, and perfectly at last, to the ad. vancement of his glory now, and the completion of it then. i Chron. xxix. 11. "Thine, O Lord, is the greatnefs, and the power, and the glory, &c. Josh. vii. y. And what wilt thou do únto thy great name ? Isa. xlii. 8. I am the Lord, that is my name, &c. Ifa. xlviii. ll. For my own sake, even for my own fake, will I do it, &c.

Q: 15. Why is Amen added ?

A. Because it is the usual conclusion of prayers and praises ; · Pfalm xli. 13. Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, &c. Pfalm

Ixxii. 19. And bleffed bę his glorious name for ever, &c. 1, 2 Cor. xiii. ult. The grace of the Lord Jesus, and the love of

God, &c. Rom. xvi. 20. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ
be with you. Amen."
"Q. 16. But what doth this word here signify ?

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A. It signifies, (1.) The reality and ardency of our desires to be granted in what we pray for ; Rev. xxii. 20. He which testifieth these things, faith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so come, Lord Jesus.

l. 17. And what besides ?.

A. Our trust and firm confidence that we shall be heard and · answered in all these our requests; Rev. i. 7. Even so, Amen. Rev. vii. 12, Saying, Amen. Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, &c...

e. 18. What are the inferences from hence ?

A. That we ought to use in prayer all such arguments, as may moft and best affect our hearts towards God, excite our graces, and succeed with God.

Q. 19. What is another?

A. That all we pray for must be in a fubferviency to God's kingdom, and with a desire of his glory.

Q. 20. What is the next ?

A. That we must act according to onr prayers ; do all we can for the advancement of God's kingdom, and the exaltation of his glory, as subjects and votaries thereto; Psalm cxvi. 16. 1 Cor. $. 31.

Q. 21. What may more be gathered hence ? A. That as we ought to begin, fo to continue, and conclude our prayers, in lowest adorations of God, and acknowledgements of his glory and attributes. .Q. 22. What more doth this conclusion teach?

A. That in prayer we must be fervent in our desires, and · longing for what we pray, James v. 16.

8. 23. Is there any thing besides ?

A. That praying for things agreeable to God's will, we ought to be confident that we shall succeed in our requests, praying for the matter, and after the manner of this prayer; James i. 6, 8. Matth. xxi. 22.

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