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Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.
Behold, I show you a mystery: we shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.
O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?
The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law.
But thanks be to God, who giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.
If there be any Address it may be introduced here. And
then the Minister may say one of the two following Prayers:
ALMIGHTY God, with whom do live the spirits
with whom the souls of the faithful, after they are delivered from the burthen of the flesh, are in joy and felicity; we thank thee for having given to us the dear brother whom thou hast now taken away; and for the blessed assurance, that, though he will not return to us, we shall go to him. Oh grant, we beseech thee, that we, with all those who are departed in the true faith of thy holy name, may have our perfect consummation and bliss in thine eternal glory. Amen.
need thee. Without thee we are poor and weak, and with thee we can be brave and strong. We bow ourselves before thy will. We yield ourselves to thy law. Thou sendest forth thy Spirit, we are created: thou takest away our breath, we die and return to the dust. In death as in life, in sorrow as in joy, thou art waiting to bless us, if we will but turn to thee. Thou dost gird and guide us, though we know it not; and the shadow with which thou darkenest our way is but the shadow of thy close-approaching and over-brooding presence.
Help us to find thee this day. Lead us from our weakness to thy strength, and from our ignorance to thy wisdom, and give us the peace and confidence which walks in the darkness even as in the light. It is thou who dost take to thyself the life of this, thy servant. Help us to say and to believe that it is well, - well with the life which seems to go away, because it finds thy rest and peace, and well for us who stay, because of tender memories and Christian hopes. In the midst of grief and solitude give to us the prayer of gratitude and praise. As we perceive that the things which are seen are temporal, so much the more may we find that the things which are unseen are eternal. Strengthen in us that immortal hope which is ours in the discipleship of Jesus. Amid the changes of this world make us strong and calm, because we rest in thee; and finally persuade us that neither death nor life, nor things present, nor things to come, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen.
O GOD, grant that the immortal hope, and the
comforts of thy gracious Spirit, may sustain in this their bereavement the family and friends of our departed friend. Be thou, O God, their refuge, their consolation, and their sure trust. The more they are brought to perceive that things seen are
temporal, so much the more may they find that the things which are unseen are eternal. May they embrace thy promises and be thankful; may they know that thou art God, and be still. Amen.
RANT unto us all, O holy Father and eternal
Judge, to be mindful of our mortality, and prepared for thy will; and that, when thou sayest unto us, Return, ye children of men, we may hear the command without dismay and obey it without reluctance; knowing whom we have believed, and persuaded that he is able to keep that which we have committed to him, against that day. We offer our prayers through him who is the resurrection and the life, thy Son Jesus Christ. Amen.
Then the Lord's Prayer, to be said after the Minister.
UR Father who art in heaven, Hallowed be
thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive them that trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.
On the way to the Grave, one of the following Sentences
may be said:
E know that if our earthly house of this
tabernacle be dissolved, we have a building of God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. (2 Cor. v.)
I have set the Lord always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.
Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also shall rest in hope.
For thou wilt not leave my soul in the grave; neither wilt thou suffer thy holy one to see corruption. (Ps. xvi. 8-10.)
Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. (Ps. xxiii. 4.)
When they come tồ the Grave, while the Corpse is made
ready to be laid into the earth, the Minister shall say :
AN that is born of a woman hath but a short
time to live, and is full of trouble. He cometh up, and is cut down like a flower; he fleeth as it were a shadow, and never continueth in one stay. In the midst of life we are in death: of whom may we seek for succor, but of thee, O Lord, in whom our souls do rest and hope?