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and they shall call his Name Eminanuel, which being interpreted, is, God with us.) Then Joseph being raised from sleep, did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him, his wife: and' knew her not till she had brought forth her first-born Son; § and he called his Name JESUS.
1 The circumcision of Cbrift.
and obedient to the law for man; Grant us the true circumcision of the Spirit, that our hearts and all our members being mortified from all worldly, and carnal lusts, we may in all things obey thy blessed will, through the same thy Son Jesus Chrift our Lord, Ainen.
The Epiftle. Rom. 4. 8.
Cometh this blessedness then upon the circumcision only, or upon the uncircumcision also ? For we say, thát faith was reckoned to Abraham for righteousness. How was it then reckoned? when he was in circumcision, of in uncircumcision? not in circumcision, but in uncircumcision. And he received the sign of 'circumcision, a seal of the righteousness of the faith, which he had yet being uncircumcised ; that he might be tlie father of all them that believe, though they be not circumcised; that righteousness
Paraphrase on the Colleet for the Circumcifion. Moit mighty God, who, for our fakes, didft cause, ordinate desires and affections being fully fubdued, we thy Son to undergo the painful rite of Circumcision; may give up ourselves to thy service in all holy Obegrant us to be so spiritually Circumcised, that our in- dience, through the same Jesus Chrift.
And he called his . Name' Jefits, &c. ' Jesus is that he only is properly to be called a ferv; who is one the fame wih Jolhuah in the Old Testament, and sig- inwardly, and that the true -Circumcifion is that of the nifies a Saviour. And as that Jewish Leader conduct- Heart, in the Spirit and not in the Letter : fo Baptism ed the Ifraelites into the earthly Canaan, fo, by the help will then alone be effectual to Salvation when it is foland direction of the Captain of our Salvation, we are lowed by a Death unto Sin, and a new Birth unto Righled through the Wilderness of this world to the Hea- teoufness, for as the same Apostle obferves we are buried venly Canaan, the Regions of Bliss and Immortality. with Christ by Baptifm into Death, that like as Chrift
ll'A: Circumcifion was an outward distinguishing was raised up from the Dead by the glory of the Father, Badge of Judaism, so is Baprifin an outward visible fign even to me allo should walk in newness of Life, Rom. of our Christian profession. But as St. Paul affures us vi. 4.
might be imputed unto themalso. And the father of circumcision to them who are not of the circumcision only, but also walk in the steps of that faith of our father Abraham, which he had being yet uncircumcised. For the promise that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law but through the righteousness of faith. For if they, which are of the law be heirs, faith is made void, and the promise made of none effect.
illin The Gospel. S. Luke 2.' 15. ND it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from
them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let uş now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass
, which the Lord hath made known unto us. And they came with haste, and found Mary and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger. And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child. And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds. | But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them. $ And when eight days were accomplished for the circumcising of the child, his name was called JESUS, which was so named of the angel before he was conceived in the womb. The same Colleet, Epistle, and Gospel Mall serve for every day after,
unto the Epiphany.
And the Father of Circumcifion, &c. As it was through Jefus Chrift. Faith, and not Circumcision, that rendered Abraham | But Mary kept all these things, &c. Who can sufacceptable to God; so it is by Faith, without Circum- - ficiently admire the modefty and humility of the blessed cifion, that we Gentiles are admitted to partake in the Virgin on this occasion, instead of being highly puffed Blengs of a Redeemer.
up with the extraordinary dignity conferred upon her ; + Ånd the Babe lying in a Manger. Behold of how in!ead of boasting to the Shepherds of the greatness little estimation in God's fight is all human pomp and of her family and descent-She on the contrary Splendor! fince his only Son, the King of Glory, was heard their News with lowly a'tention and meditated made to take up, at his Birth, with such lowly ac- upon it with filent admiration. commodations --Let us hence learn that true greatness And when right Days, &c. Jefus fubmitted to the is only to be ekimated by real goodness: and that Hu rite of Circumcilion, that he might: falfil the Law, and mility and Holiness, in the lowest condition of Life, Thew his approbation of it, till the bringing in of a betwill effectually recommend us to the favour of God, ter difpenfation.
The Epiphany, or the Manifestation of Christ to the Gentiles,
begotten Son to the Gentiles; Mercifully grant, that we, which know thee now by faith, may after this life have the fruition of thy glorious Godhead, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
The Epiftle. Ephes. 3. 1. OR this cause, I Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ for you
Gentiles ; if ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God, which is given me to you-ward: How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery (as I wrote afore in few words, whereby when ye
understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ) which in other ages was not made known unto the fons of men, as it is now revealed unto his holy Apostles and Prophets by the Spirit. * That the Gentiles should be fellow-heirs, and of the fame body, and partakers of his promise in Christ, by the Gospel: whereof I was made a minister, according to the gift of the grace of God given unto me by the effectual working of his power. Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unfearchable riches of Christ; and to make all inen see what is the fellow ship of the mystery, which
Paraphrase on the Collect for the Epiphany. O God, who by the direction of a Star, didît dis- of thy Revelation, may after this Life enjoy the percover thy Son Jesus Christ to the Eastern Philosophers, feat Happiness of thy immediate presence when we shall who were the first Fruits of the Gentiles; grant that we see thee as thou art and know thee as we are known, v ho know thee now, tho imperfectly, through the glass though Jesus Chrift.
| 'The Epiphany is a Festival in which we have pa- to fine before Men, that they seeing our good Works may ticular reason to Rejoice. For to use St. Paul's expref- glorify our Father which is in Heavens, fion, 1.t us remember that we being in Tine pajt Gentiles in . Tkat the Gentiles should be Fellow-Heirs, &c. Obthe Fles, were then without Christ, being Alicns from the serve here that it is not said that the Gentiles should be Commonwealth of Ifr.el, and strangers from the Covenants admitted merely to the fame privileges which the Jews of Promijë having no Hope, and withiur God in the allowed to their Proselytes: bat that through their belief World: but now in Christ Jesus, we who Sometimes were of the Gospel they should be equally Heirs with them far of', are made nigh by the Blood of Christ. The Wife of the same heavenly Inheritance, Members with them men were conducted to Christ by the leading of a Star, of the fame Body, if which Chrift is the Head, and how much rather should we come unio him who are partakers in all the benefits of Chriflian Revelation ; under the guidance of the marvellous Lght of his Gof. without submitting to the ceremonies of the Law of pel! and how greatly does it become us to let our Light Mles. Thanks be to God for his unspeakable gift.
from the beginning of the World hath been. hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Chrift: To the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known by the Church the manifold wisdom of God, according to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord. + In whom we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of him.
S. Matth. 2. I.
of Herod the king, behold, there came g wisemen from the east to Jerusalem, saying, where is he that is born King of the Jews ? for we have feen his star in the east, and are come to wor
* When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him. And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he demanded of them where Christ should be born. And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judea: for thus it is written by the prophet, And thou, Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda : for out of thee shall come a Governor that shall rule my people Israel. Then Herod, when he had privily called
Iz whom we have boldness, &c. How can we fuffi- , fent to conduct them to the birth-place of the Mesial. ciently express our Thankfulness to God that he has And his being thus pleased to make this Revelation to been pleased not only to deliver us from the darkness these: Gentile Sages seemed to fgnify his intention of of Heathen Ignorance; but has permitted us to ap-3 calling all Nations to the knowledge of the Gofpei. proach the Throne of Grace with huinblé confidence that A Mercy for which we also who were once without sur Prayers thall be accepted through the Merits and Light, can never be sufficiently thankful. intercettion of our Redeemer.
When Herod the King beard, c. : That Herod Wilmen. These Philosophers, in their own Coun- should be troubled on this occasion is not so much to be try Language, were called Magi, and probably came wondered at, as he had no legal Title to the Crown of from Arabia, which lies East from Judea. And as the Judea, and had acted with great Tyranny in his Govern Arabians were the Defcendents of Abraham by Inho mėnt; and might therefore be apt to fear a Revolt mael they might have a traditional Knowledge of the of the Jews in favour of this long expected Meffiah. promifed Melliah, preserved among them, as is evident But the Jews, no doubt, felt very different fentations from the Words of the Arabian Prophet Balaam, Tbcre upon this News: tho they were probably much agitated bell come a Star out of Jacob, &c. And as Astronomy was with the joyful hopes of deliverance froin the dominion a Science probably much cultivated amongst the Ara- of the Romans, and of the happiness they expected to bians, as well as the Chaldeans, fo their Philosophers enjoy under the Reign of the Meilah, for little did they were likely much sooner to discover, and judge of imagine that his Kir.gdom was not of this World. the design, of that new remarkable Star which God
the wise-men, enquired of them diligently what time the står ap-
thy people which call upon thee, and grant that they may both perceive and know what things they ought to do, and also may have grace and power faithfully to fulfil the fame, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
The Epistle. Rom. 12. 1. Beseech
you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, I that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto
Paraphrafe on the Collea for the first Sunday after the Epiphany. O Lord, gracioufly hear our humble petitions; and and diligently to perform it. Grant this we befeech enable us clearly to understand our duty, and sincerely thee for the sake of Jesus Chrift,
And he fent them to Bethlehem, &c. How deep * We are hereby taught to acknowledge that it is of laid was the device of this Tyrant at once to impose God alone that we are enabled to understand and per. upon the simplicity of these Philosophers, and to dif- form our Duty.! cover the Habitation of the Prince of Life, and effect That ye present, &c. God does not expect us, unbis cruel designs against his life. But God, who bring- der the Gospel, to come before him with Sacrifices of eth the Counsels of the wicked to nought, hy a fingular flain Beasts, but to dedicate our lives to his service in Providence defeated his malicious purposes, and has all holy obedience ; which is better than all whole faught us by this example that no one can hurt whom Burnt Offerings a Sacrifice most worthy of reasonable he protects, and that therefore to fecuse his favour, is Beings. molt to consult our own intereit.