Knox: A Prayer Said at the Lord’s Supper

O Father of mercy and God of all consolation, seeing that all creatures do acknowledge and confess Thee as Governor and Lord (Rev. 5), it becometh us, the workmanship of Thy own hands, at all times to reverence and magnify Thy godly majesty—first, for that Thou hast created us to Thy own image and similitude (Gen. 1), but chiefly that Thou hast delivered us from that everlasting death and damnation (Gen. 3; Gal. 1; Eph. 2) into the which Satan drew mankind by the means of sin, from the bondage whereof neither man nor angel was able to make us free (Acts 4; Heb. 1; Rev 5).

But Thou, O Lord, rich in mercy and infinite in goodness, hast provided our redemption to stand in Thy only and well-beloved Son, whom of very love Thou didst give to be made man (John 3) like unto us in all things (Heb. 8) (sin excepted), (Heb. 4, 7) that in His body He might receive the punishments of our transgression (Isaiah 43, 53; 1 Pet. 2), by His death to make satisfaction to Thy justice, (Matt. 3, 17; Rom. 5; Heb. 8; Jer. 31) and by His resurrection to destroy him that was author of death, (Heb. 2) and thus to subdue and bring life again to the world (John 6) from which the whole offspring of Adam most justly was exiled (Gen. 3; Rom. 5).

O Lord, we acknowledge that no creature is able to comprehend the length and breadth—the depth and height—of that Thy most excellent love (Eph. 3), which moved Thee to show mercy where none was deserved (Eph. 2), to promise and give life where death had gotten victory (John 6, 17; Eph. 2), and to receive us into Thy grace when we could do nothing but rebel against Thy justice (Gen. 6; Ps. 5, 14; Isa. 64; Rom. 3, 7).

O Lord, the blind dullness of our corrupt nature will not suffer us sufficiently to weigh these most ample benefits (Matt. 10, 16; Luke 11; 1 Cor. 2); nevertheless, at the commandment of Jesus Christ our Lord (Matt. 26; Luke 22), we present ourselves to this His table (which He hath left to be used in remembrance of His death until His coming again) (1 Cor. 11) to declare and witness before the world that by Him alone we have received liberty and life (John 8; Gal. 5), that by Him alone Thou dost acknowledge us Thy children and heirs (Rom. 8; Eph. 1; 1 Peter 1), that by Him alone we have entrance to the throne of Thy grace (Rom. 3; Eph. 2; Heb, 4), that by Him alone we are possessed in our spiritual kingdom (Matt. 25; Luke 12; John 14) to eat and drink at His table (Luke 22; Rev. 2) with whom we have our conversation presently in heaven (Eph. 2; Phil. 3) and by whom our bodies shall be raised up again from the dust and shall be placed with Him in that endless joy, which Thou, O Father of mercy, hast prepared for Thy elect before the foundation of the world was laid (Eph. 1; Rev. 13).

And these most inestimable benefits we acknowledge and confess to have received of Thy free mercy and grace by Thy only beloved Son Jesus Christ (Rom. 3; Eph. 2; Titus 3), for the which therefore, we Thy congregation, moved by Thy Holy Spirit (Rom. 8), render Thee all thanks, praise, and glory, forever and ever.

-John Knox, Taken from Laing, Works of John Knox, 4:194-196

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