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Let us come before his prefence with thanksgiving: and Thew ourselves glad in him with psalms.
For the Lord is a great God: and a great King above
In his hand are all the corners of the earth: and the strength of the hills is his also.
The sea is his, and he made it: and his hands prepared the dry land.
O come, let us worship, and fall down: and kneel before the Lord our Maker.
For he is the Lord our God: and we are the people of his pafture, and the sheep of his hand.
To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts: as in the provocation, and as in the day of temptation in the wilderness;
When your fathers tempted me: proved me, and faw
Forty years long was I grieved with this generation, and faid: It is a people that do err in their hearts, for they have not known my ways.
Unto whom I swear in my wratii: that they should not enter into
reft. Glory be to the Father, &c.
As it was in the beginning, &c. that in his time the service of the church commenced with this pfalm; it being sung in a loud manner, in order to inform the people who were waiting around the church, that the public devotions were begun. Hence its name of Invitatory Pfalm. This portion of the service, however, was different from the Invitatory itself, which was of old, and ftill is in the Roman Catholic church, some select passage or text of scripture, introduced and reiterated in most of the offices: But it being conlidered by our Reformers as a " fond thing, and vainly invented,” it was partially probibited in the first Book of Common Prayer, and entirely done away by the above rubric; the latter part of which was introduced at the review, A. D. 1662. As it is the laudable practice at many churches for the congregation to commence their devotions with singing a psalm, it may be worth while to repeat, that this custom is fanctioned, as we have seen above, by the higheit authority--that of the primitive Christian church.
Pfalni xcv.] This divine composition was used in the public service of the Jews, on the Feast of Tabernacles, according to Grotius; or, on the Sabbath-day, according to Calvin. We find it also adopted into the Liturgies of the early Christian church, both of the East and of the Weft. It calls upon us to praise God, to pray to him, and to hear his holy words and is therefore a proper introduction to the succeeding parts of the fervice, which are composed of acts of adoration, petition, and listening to the word of exhortation,
Then shall follow the Psalms in order as they are appointed: And at the end of every Psalm throughout the Year, and likewise at the end of Benedicite, Benedictus, Magnificat, and Nunc dimittis, shall be repeated,
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son: and to the Holy Ghoft.
Answ. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be: world without end. Amen, [ Then shall be read disinętly with an audible voice the
First Lefon, taken out of the Old Testament, as is appointed in the Calendar (except there be proper Lessons assigned for that day:) he that readeth, so standing, and turning
The Psalms in the order, &c.] We learn from the original preface to the Book of Prayer, that before the Reformation the psalms were divided into seven portions, of which each was called a Nocturn (a night, or very early service.). Of late times, (continues the preface) a few of the psalms have been used daily, and the rest utterly omitted. To supply this omifLion, the church established, in 1662, the present rubric. Various modes, in different ages of the church, have been adopted in reciting the psalms. In the carly times, the psalms were often sung by one person alone; alone; the rest listening with devout attention: the common custom in the Egyptian monasteries. Sometimes they were sung by the whole affenibly joining together; this was the most ancient and general practice. Sometimes they were lung in alternation by the congregation; one part repeating one verse, and the other part reciting the next. Sometimes one perfon repeated the first part of the verse, and the rest joined altogether at the clofe; a practice called by the Greeks
υπακοειν, and by the Latins succinere; and which was the origin of the office of Precentors in cathedrals.-Bingham's Ant. Chrifi. Church, book xiv. c. I.
The extract from St. Chryfoftom, which, for the sake of convenience, I have introduced under the rubric refpecting the psalms in the Evening Service, will manifest the high estimation in which they were held by the early Christians, and the general use to which they were applied in the fervice of God.
The Voluntary before the First Lesson.) This practice, common in all churches which have an organ, seenis to have been derived from a custom oblerved in the Jewish fynagogues. In them it was formerly, and is, as I am informed, at present usual, for the music to play previously to reading a portion of the law, (to which our first lesson corresponds) during the interval whilit the minister (urneemn, fee Luke iv. 20) is taking the roll of the law from the altar, where it is kept, and carrying it to the reader, and the reader is unrolling it (xrce to lubis to B.62.00) to find out the portion intended to be read.
He that readeth, fostanding, &c.] In the early times of the Reformation, the minister read the lessons, and performed other of the offices, in the choir, chancel, or near the altar; which, in large or incommodious churches, occafioned the people much difficulty in hearing him; and hence
himself, as he may best be heard of all such as are present. And after that, shall be said or sung in English the Hymn called Te Deum laudamus, daily throughout the
year. 9 NOTE, That before every Lesson the Minister shall say,
Here beginneth such a Chapter, or verse of such a Chapter of such a Book: And after every Lesson, Here endeth the First, or Second Leffon.
Te Deum laudamus.
WE praife thee, O God: we acknowledge thee to be
the Lord. . All the earth doth worship thee: the Father everlasting:
To thee all angels cry aloud: the Heavens and all the Powers therein. it was that the minister is directed to turn himself to the congregation when he reads the lessons, and to recite them “ distinctly," and with “ an audible voice.”. Some of the bishops however after a time (availing themfelves of a rubric, introduced by Elizabeth in 1559) dispensed with the performance of the Morning and Evening Service at the altar; and reading-news were, in consequence of this dilpensation, erected in the tody of the church for the use of the minister; a practice, the convenience of which foon occafioned it to be general. In many parish churches in the kingdom these reading-pews still remain.
Here beginneth such a Chapter, &c.] This rubric is founded upon a practice of great antiquity in the Christian church; namely, that of the deacon rising up before the lesson was begun to be read, and calling out with a loud voice, “ Let us listen, my brethren.” General silence and attention being by these means obtained, he that read introduced the lesson with these words, “ Thus faith the Lord.” The lessons, as well as the epistles and gospels, were by the review, 1662, ordered to be taken from the new, or James's, translation of the bible.
Te Deum laudamus.] Our church, in the introduction of hymns into her ferrice, follows the practice of the Apoftolic times; grounded upon that injunction of St. Paul, “ In every thing give thanks, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns, and spiritual songs, singing with grace in our hearts upto the Lord.” i Theff.v. 18; Col.iii. 16. And the reason of directing a hymn after the leffons is exceedingly judicious, as there is no portion of fcripture appointed for a lesson by the church which does not awaken in the soul the emotions of gratitude and admiration; and consequently fuggest the neceflity of thanksgiving and praise. The Te Deum is admirably calculated to express these emotions ; being fervent, majestic, and sublime: Its antiquity and author are uncertain; Ambrote, Hilary, and Jerome, having been mentioned as its compofers. The most early account attaches a furt of miraculous origin to it. It tells us, that when St. Ambrose baptized his celebrated convert Äuguftine, before he ascended from the water, he burst into the rapturous expreffion of adoration with which the hymn commences; that Augustine immediately fubjunted the second rufiels; and that they thus continued ejaculating
To thee Cherubin and Seraphin: continually do ery,
The holy Church throughout all the world: doth ac. knowledge thee;
The Father: of an infinite Majesty;
When thou tookeit upon thee to deliver man: thou didit not abhor the Virgin's womb.
When thou hadít overcome the sharpness of death: thou didst open the Kingdom of Heaven to all believers.
Thou sittest at the right hand of God: in the glory of the Father,
We believe that thou shall come: to be our judge.
We therefore pray thee, help thy servants: whom thou hast redeemed with thy precious blood.
Make them to be numbered with thy Saints: in glory everlasting O Lord, save thy people: and bless thine heritage. Govern them: and lift them up for ever. Day by day: we magnify thee; And we worship thy Name: ever world without end. Vouchsafe, O Lord: to keep us this day without sin. O Lord, have mercy upon us: have mercy upon us. O Lord, let thy mercy lighten upon us; as our trust is
O Lord, in thee have I trusted: let me never be con
alternately the sentences which compose this divine hymn, till Ambrose concluded in the words, “ O Lord, in thee have I trusted,” &c. The opinion which attributes the Te Deum to St. Nicetius bishop of Triers, who flourished in the beginning of the sixth century, seems to be better founded than any other,
Or this Canticle, Benedicite, omnia opera Domini. O
All ye Works of the Lord, bless ye the Lord: praise him, and magnify him for ever.
ye Angels of the Lord, bless ye the Lord: praise him, and magnify him for ever.
Oye Heavens, bless ye the Lord: praise hiin, and magnify him for ever.
O ye Waters, that be above the firmament, bless ye the Lord: praise him, and magnify him for ever.
O all ye Powers of the Lord, bless ye the Lord: praise him, and magnify him for ever.
Oye Sun and Moon, bless ye the Lord: praise him, and magnify him for ever.
O ye Stars of Heaven, bless ye the Lord: praise him, and magnify him for ever.
Oye Showers and Dew, bless ye the Lord: praise hirn, and magnify him for ever.
O ye Winds of God, bless ye the Lord: praise him, and magnify him for ever.
Oye Fire and Heat, bless ye the Lord: praise him, and magnify him for ever. O ye Winter and Summer, bless
the Lord; praise him, and magnify him for ever. O ye
Dews and Frosts, bless ye the Lord: praise him, and magnify him for ever. O ye
Frost and Cold, bless ye the Lord: praise him, and magnify him for ever.
Oye Ice and Snow, bless ye the Lord: praise him, and magnify him for ever.
Oye Nights and Days, blefs ye the Lord: praise him, and magnify him for ever.
Or this Canticle] This hymn, called in the Apocrypha,“ The song of the Three Children in the burning fiery furnace," was adopted by the early Christians into their liturgies from the service of the ancient Jewith church. It is a full and noble paraphrase of the 148th psalm. In the first Common Prayer-Book of Edward VIth, this canticle was directed to be used in the room of Te Deum throughout Lent; but in his second book, which contained double hymns for both lessons, the use of either hymn was left to the discretion of the minister; and the words “ Or this Can, ticle” were inserted. Athanasius directs virgins to use it in their private devotions; and the fourth council of Toledo orders it to be sung by the clergy of Spain and Gallicia, every Lord's-day, and on the festivals of the martyrs, under pain of excommunication.-Bingham's Ant. b. xiv. c. 3,