GOD OF THE PUBLICAN,
Be merciful to me a sinner;
this I am by nature and practice,
this thy Word proclaims me to be,
this I hope I feel myself to be;
Yet thou hast not left me to despair,
for there is no ‘peradventure’ in thy grace;
I have all the assurance I need
that with thee is plenteous redemption.
In spite of the number and heinousness of my sins
thou hast given me a token for good;
The golden sceptre is held out,
and thou hast said ‘Touch it and live’.
May I encourage myself by a sense of thy
by faith in thy promises,
by views of the experience of others.
To that dear refuge in which so many have sheltered
from every storm
may I repair,
In that fountain always freely open for sin
may I be cleansed from every defilement.
Sin is that abominable thing which thy soul hates,
and this alone separates thee and me.
Thou canst not contradict the essential perfections
of thy nature;
Thou canst not make me happy with thyself,
till thou hast made me holy like thyself.
O holy God, make me such a creature as thou canst
take pleasure in,
and such a being that I can take pleasure in thee.
May I consent to and delight in thy law
after the inner man,
never complain over the strictness of thy demands,
but mourn over my want of conformity to them;
never question thy commandments,
but esteem them to be right.
By thy Spirit within me
may my practice spring from principle, and
my dispositions be conformable with duty.
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