London: Thomas Mabb, 1660.
A Prayer for the preservation of the University and City of Oxford.
O Almighty God, who are the only sure Refuge and strong Tower of defence to all them that put their trust in thee, receive our humble Petition; save this City, this Nursery of thy Church, and thy afflicted People, from the hand of their Enemies. We know that unlesse thou keep the City, the Watchman watcheth but in vain; unlesse thou defend us, our Foundations, which are laid in dust, cannot stand firm. We acknowledge our own weaknesse, and that which makes us weaker, our woefull demerit; But thou art both the Lord of Hosts & Prince of Peace, able to destroy the strongest Army with an Army of most despicable Creatures, with things of nothing, with sudden weaknesse and follies, with armour or imagination. Thou canst bring us to the brink of destruction, and call us back again; Look down therefore, most mercifull Lord, upon this Place, and according to thy wonted goodness, resist the proud, and give grace to the humble, that run to the shadow of thy wings for succour: Thou that stillest the raging of the Sea, and the madnesse of the People, say to the one, as to the other, hither shall thy proud waves come and no further. Suffer not the purpose of our Oppressors to stand, nor their Counsells to prosper, nor their Force to prevail; But set thy hook into their nostrils, to turn them back, or confound them, according to thy good pleasure and secret wisdome, by which thou disposest all Events, beyond the means and reach of man; But arme thy lowly Servants with Faith and Patience, raise our Spirits, guide our Consultations, strengthen our hands, help our wants, bless our endeavours with success; That we being delivered like them that dream, may praise thee as men awaked out of dust; and having seen and escaped thy Rod, may serve thee ever hereafter, with true obedience, through Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour,
Amen. A Prayer drawn by his Majesties speciall direction and Dictates, for a blessing on the Treaty at Uxbridge.
O Most Mercifull Father, Lord God of Peace and Truth, we a People sorely afflicted by the Scourge of an unnatural War, do here earnestly beseech thee, to command a blessing from Heaven upon this present Treaty, begun for the establishment of an happy Peace. Soften the most obdurate Hearts with a true Christian desire of saving those mens blood, for whom Christ himself hath shed his. Or if the guilt of our great sins, cause this Treaty to break off in vain, Lord let the Truth clearly appear, who those men are, which under pretence of the Publick good, do pursue their own private ends; that this People may be no longer so blindely miserable, as not to see, at least in this their day, the things that belong unto their peace. Grant this gracious God, for his sake, who is our Peace it self, even Jesus Christ our Lord,
Almighty God, terrible in thy Judgements, but more wonderfull in thy Mercies, who turnest man to Destruction, and again, thou sayst, Come again ye children of Men; we miserable sinners, prostrate this day before thee, humbly confesse, with Horror in our Hearts, and Confusion in our Faces, that every one of us hath, more or lesse, contributed to that vast heap of crying fins, which hath now in so high a measure draw down thy vengeance on us; that we have abused thy Patience so long, till we have at last turn'd it into Fury, compelling thee, by our often provocations to visit us in blood, to make us tear out our own bowells, and by a strange unnaturall War, raised we know not why, (thy Iustice and our Sins excepted) to become executioners of our selves, and so to sin afresh in the very punishments of sin. But alas! what profit is there in our Blood? or what Glory can come to thee by our Ruine? Let it suffice, O God, that thou hast thus far rebuked us in thine Anger; but consume us not utterly, for we are all thy People. Say to the destroying Sword, It is enough, and let it be no longer drunk with the blood of thine Inheritance; But look down upon our unfamed Humiliation, hear the Prayer which in the bitternesse of our Souls we pour out this day before thee, accept of our Repentance, and where it is defective, let thy Holy Spirit make it up with Groanes that cannot be expressed. Look upon thy Moses who standeth in the gap, beseeching thee to turn thine anger from thy People; remember what he hath suffer'd, and the heavy things that thou hast shewn him; and in the day, when thou makest Inquisition for Blood, forget not his desires of Peace, the endeavours which he hath used, and the Prayers which he hath made to thee for it. Return all this, O Lord, with comfort into his Bosome. And since thou hast already wrought so much for him, as to bring these unhappy entangled differences to a Treaty, take not off thine hand, till thou hast untied every knot, and cleared every difficulty. Send thy Spirit into their hearts, who are entrusted with this great work, give them Bowels of Compassion, toward their bleeding and expiring Country; strike a Sense into them of the blood already shed, and the Desolation to come, which threatneth all if they prevent it not. But above all, let thy feare run through all their consultations, that remembring the sad account, which in the last great day will be required of them, they may lay aside every Sin, and every Interest that may divert them from the wayes of Peace; and by the guidance of thy Wisdom (for in this all humane wisdom failes) find out those blessed expedients as may restore the voice of Joy and Peace into our Dwellings, in such a way, as may be most to the Glory of thy Great Name; the Settlement of the true Religion so long professed among us, the Honour and Safety of the Kings Sacred Person, and the Good of all his People. Hear these our Prayers, and perfect this great work, through the mediation of thine own dear Son Jesus Christ our Lord,
O Most just and powerfull Lord God, to whom vengeance belongeth, we cannot but acknowledge, that the manifold miseries which have befallen us, are the due reward of our deeds, and that we have deserved, that the things which belong to our Peace should still be hid from our eyes. For when of thy own free mercy thou wert pleased to grant us a long time of plenty and prosperity, more then thou gavest to any the Nations that are about us, we became weary of our happinesse, and by our ingratitude pulled down upon us those judgements which now threaten desolation to this late flourishing kingdom. And since the time of our affliction, thou hast given us space to repeat, and we repented not; Iniquity hath still more and more abounded. As heretofore thy mercies did not allure us, so now thy judgements have not humbled us to a serious consideration of our misdeservings. Now, O Lord, we finde our selves intangled, and wearied by our own Counsells; The troubles of our heart are in larged; Our iniquities and the punishments which attend upon them, are a burden too heavy for us to bear. And therefore in the anguish and bitternesse of our souls, we return unto thee, humbly beseeching thee, in whom alone is our help, to have respect unto the Prayers of thy servants. O shut not up thy loving kindnesse in displeasure, let not thine anger burn against the sheep of thy pasture: But bind up the breach of this People Let the sighing of the Prisoners come before thee, Behold the tears of the distressed Orphans and Widdows, and of all such as are oppressed and have no comforter. How long, O Lord, holy and true, doest thou forbear to command deliverances? Remember thy tender mercies which have been ever of old, and save us as thou hast done heretofore. Remember thy promise of deliverance to those who call upon thee in the day of trouble. And when the blood that hath been shed calls aloud for verigeance, O then hearken unto the voice of thy Sons blood, which speaks better things; behold the Lamb of God, who was wounded for our transgressions, and bruised for our iniquities. And to this end, regard the sincerity of thine Anointed, maintain thine own cause, and preserve unto him that power which thou hast given him: bind his soul in the bundle of life, let mercy and truth preserve him, and let his Throne be established for ever before thee. Blesse them that are peaceable and faithfull in the Land: And as for those that have risen up against him, we beseech thee, melt and mollifie their hearts to the entertainment of compassion and love; reclaim them to obedience, lay not their sin to their charge, but guide their feet into the way of Peace. Give to those that have done wrong, the grace to repent, and to those that have suffered wrong, minds ready to forgive. And if any shall be averse from Peace, O thou that art the wonderfull Counsellor, turn their wisdome into foolishness, confound their practises, and let their mischief return upon their own heads. And when thou hast vouchsafed to give us that tranquillity which we beg at thy hands, give us grace to embrace it with all thankfulnesse, to obey our Governours, to live at unity among our selves, evermore blessing thy glorious name, which is exalted above all blessing and praise, through Jesus Christ our Lord,