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April 11. ALMIGHTY
LMIGHTY God, my Creator and my Judge, who givest life and takest it away, enable me to return sincere and humble thanks for my late deliverance from imminent death; so govern my future life by thy Holy Spirit, that every day which Thou shalt permit to pass over me, may
spent in thy service, and leave me less tainted with wickedness, and more submissive to thy will.
Enable me, O Lord, to glorify Thee for that knowledge of my corruption, and that sense of thy wrath, which my disease and weakness and danger awakened in my mind. Give me such sorrow as may purify my heart, such indignation as may quench all confidence in myself, and such repentance as may, by the intercession of my
Redeemer, obtain pardon. Let the commemoration of the sufferings and death of thy Son, which I am now, by thy favour, once more permitted to make, fill me with faith, hope, and charity. Let my purposes be good, and my
resolutions unshaken; and let me not be hindered or distracted by vain and useless fears, but through the time which yet remains, guide me by thy Holy Spirit, and finally receive me to everlasting life, for the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour. Amen.
AGAINST INQUISITIVE AND PERPLEX
Aug. 12, 1784. O Lord, my Maker and Protector, who hast graciously sent me into this world to work out my salvation, enable me to drive from me all such unquiet and perplexing thoughts, as may mislead or hinder me in the practice of those duties which Thou hast required. When I behold the works of thy hands, and consider the course of thy providence, give me grace always to remember that thy thoughts are not my thoughts, nor thy ways my ways. And while it shall please Thee to continue me in this world, where much is to be done, and little to be known, teach me, by thy Holy Spirit, to withdraw my mind from unprofitable and dangerous inquiries, from difficulties vainly curious, and doubts impossible to be solved. Let me rejoice in the light which Thou hast imparted, let me serve Thee with active zeal and humble confidence, and wait with patient expectation for the time in which the soul which Thou receivest shall be satisfied with knowledge. Grant this, O Lord, for Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.
Ashbourne, August 28, 1784. ALMIGHTY and most merciful Father, who afflictest not willingly the children of
men, and by whose holy will languishes in sickness and pain, make, I beseech Thee, this punishment effectual to those gracious purposes for which Thou sendest it; let it, if I may presume to ask, end not in death, but in repentance; let him live to promote thy kingdom on earth, by the useful example of a better life; but if thy will be to call him hence, let his thoughts be so purified by his sufferings, that he may be admitted to eternal happiness. And, () Lord, by praying for him, let me be admonished to consider my own sins, and my own danger, to remember the shortness of life, and to use the time which thy mercy grants me to thy glory and my own salvation, for the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
(The following Prayer was composed and
used by Doctor Johnson previous to his receiving the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper, on Sunday December 5, 1781.)
LMIGHTY and most merciful Father, I am now, as to human eyes it'seems, about to commemorate, for the * last time, the death of thy Son Jesus Christ our Saviour and Redeemer. Grant, O Lord, that my whole hope and confidence may be in his merits, and thy mercy; enforce and accept my imperfect repentance; make this commemoration available to the confirmation of my faith, the establishment of my hope, and the enlargement of my charity; and make the death of thy Son Jesus Christ effectual to my redemption. Have, mercy upon me, and pardon the multitude of my offences. Bless my friends; have mercy upon all men. Support me, by thy Holy Spirit, in the days of weakness, and at the hour of death; and receive me, at my death, to everlasting happiness, for the sake of Jesus Christ. Amen.
*He died the 13th following.