The Prayer of Solomon

Preached at Eden Street Chapel. Hampstead Road. London, on Lord s Day Evening, August 3, 1851

"That thine eyes may be open upon this house day and night, upon the place whereof thou hast said that thou wouldest put thy name there."
- 2Ch 6:20

THE Tabernacle in the wilderness was a type and figure of the human nature of the Lord Jesus Christ. Thence it derived all its efficacy and all its blessedness. It was a symbolic representation of "the true tabernacle which the Lord pitched, and not man" -of that perfect humanity of the Lord Jesus, in which dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily.

When the Lord gave David rest round about from all his enemies, it was in his heart to convert this tabernacle into a permanent structure. He said therefore unto Nathan, "See now, I dwell in a house of cedar, but the ark of God dwelleth within curtains." This intention God did not permit David to fulfil; but promised that he "would set up his seed after him who should build a house for his name." This promise was accomplished in Solomon, who built the temple upon Mount Moriah. The temple thence-forward became what the tabernacle had been. And to signalise this change with his special approbation, God was pleased on the day of its dedication to fill it with his glory, and to consume with fire from heaven the burnt-offering upon the altar as he had done at the consecration of the tabernacle. Upon this solemn day, Solomon, as king of the people, offered a prayer on their behalf to God; a prayer of a very peculiar nature, but full of meaning, significancy, and blessedness.

I shall, with God s blessing, this evening, attempt to take up some of the leading points of this prayer of Solomon.

As the temple was typical and figurative of the human nature of the Lord Jesus Christ, it became the centre of Israel s worship, as well as the place on which the eyes of God rested from the beginning to the end of the year. A striking representation of the Lord Jesus Christ as the Mediator between God and man! For he is the true temple in whom the fullness of God dwells: to whom the eyes of all Israel look: in whom all true worship centres: for whose name s sake all true prayer is breathed into and out of the heart, and all gracious answers come down.

As, then, we must lose sight of the temple as a material structure, and view in it the Lord Jesus, so similarly we must not carnalise the prayer of Solomon, nor view it as merely supplicating God for temporal blessings. Under that dispensation indeed, temporal blessings and afflictions were a part of the old covenant. But we have now a new and better covenant, which not only promises, but secures spiritual blessings to the chosen remnant. Viewing, then, the prayer of Solomon in a spiritual light, we must consider the petitions, not as temporal, but as spiritual supplications, applicable to the experience, the varied experience, of the family of God.

With these hints, I proceed to the subject before us. Seven cases, if I mistake not, does Solomon mention as needing help from the sanctuary.

I.-On the first case I shall not at any length dwell; in fact, I cannot dwell long upon any of them, the subject being too spacious. But the first seems chiefly to be addressed to the Lord as a righteous and holy Sovereign: as the God of righteousness and truth. For, be it ever borne in mind, that though he is the God of all grace, of all mercy, and of all pardon, he is also a just and righteous Jehovah -the Judge of all the earth, who must do right. Righteousness and judgment are the habitation of his throne, though mercy and truth go before his face.

"If a man sin against his neighbour, and an oath be laid upon him to make him swear, and the oath come before thine altar in this house, then hear thou from heaven, and do, and judge thy servants, by requiting the wicked, by recompensing his way upon his own head, and by justifying the righteous by giving him according to his righteousness." God is called upon here to pass a righteous decision in matters of difficulty, when appealed to on oath, that a fear of his great name may be inlaid into the hearts of men: that he may not be mocked nor trifled with on the footing of his grace: and that men may not indulge themselves in the persuasion that because he is merciful he has ceased to be just. We must never in viewing one part of God s character lose sight of the other. Justice is not absorbed in mercy, nor mercy lost in justice. God s character is a complete whole: perfect in justice, and perfect in mercy: a God that "pardons iniquity, transgression, and sin, and yet will by no means clear the guilty."

II.-Having laid this broad basis: having set up as it were the throne of God upon his eternal justice and righteousness. Solomon proceeds to those cases, which need the special interpositions of mercy and grace. For the Lord s people are a fallen people: and often by their sins bring themselves into those straits and difficulties from which mercy alone can deliver them.

The first case, then, of mercy that Solomon lays before the Lord with all humility, is, "If thy people Israel be put to the worse before the enemy, because they have sinned against thee." How often are we put to the worse before the enemy! Enemies we have; and enemies we ever must have, if we are walking in the path that leads to glory; for, "if any man will live godly in Christ Jesus, he must and shall suffer persecution." But the greatest enemy that we have to cope with, is that enemy self. You may have many enemies; few are without; but there is no enemy so subtle, so dangerous, so unwearied, and so ever close at hand as that which you carry in your own bosom. A man may do himself more injury in five minutes than all his enemies put together could do in fifty years. Self, therefore, is and ever must be a man s greatest and worst enemy. And how often are we put to the worse before this enemy! Self gets the better of us. Pride, covetousness, or fleshly lusts, carnality and worldly-mindedness, unbelief, some indulged evil, or some besetting sin for a time overcomes the soul. We are put to the worse before the enemy.

Solomon has put his hand upon the right spot where he gives the reason of our being "put to the worse before the enemy." Were we in our watch-tower, strong in grace and faith, we should preveil. But too often God s people are put to the worse before the enemy "because they have sinned against thee." We need fear no enemy except we first weaken ourselves by sinning against God; and this puts us to the worse before three powerful enemies, law, conscience,  and Satan. But for sin the law would not be our enemy: if the law found nothing to condemn in us, we could never be put to the worse before it. Is not a guilty conscience,  though in one sense our friend, yet in another an enemy? But what power could a guilty conscience have over us, or how could we ever be put to the worse before this enemy, unless we sinned against God?

And is not Satan our enemy? But what advantage we give to Satan by sin! By not taking heed to our ways, by want of watchfullness and prayer, we first get entangled. This displeases the Lord; we become weak by his absence; and when the enemy pushes hard, we are put to the worse before him. Under these circumstances, but for the grace that is in Christ Jesus, the law would condemn to hell, conscience would swallow up in despair, and Satan would yell over the soul with shouts of infernal triumph. Solomon, as a typical mediator, puts up a prayer on behalf of such. He does not speak to encourage any in sin; but he says, "If they return, and confess thy name, and pray, and make supplication before thee in this house, then hear thou from the heavens, and forgive the sin of thy people Israel, and bring them again unto the land which thou gavest to them and to their fathers." The Lord will work repentance, contrition, and godly sorrow in the souls of his people; he will make them feel the bitterness of sin and their own folly in transgressing against him. He will put forth his gracious finger to soften their heart, and touch and melt their conscience, and move them "to return" with weeping and supplications. And when he sees this, he will manifest his pardoning mercy, and shed abroad his love in their heart by the Holy Ghost. But all, be it ever borne in mind, through the Mediator. There is no merit in repentance, no virtue in tears. You might shed an ocean of them, they could not wash one sin away. Your eyes might be a fountain of tears, they would not blot out the sins, the carmine sins, that have defiled your conscience. It must be by "a better sacrifice," the blood of the atonement, the blood of the Lamb of God shed upon the cross, and applied to the soul, that sin is purged away.

III.- But Solomon assumes another case, for we are always sinning -always thinking, desiring, imagining, saying, or doing something evil. "When the heaven is shut up, and there is no rain, because they have sinned against thee."  Sin still the cause. Every affliction must be traced up to sin. This is the reason why the heaven is shut up, and there is no rain literal or spiritual. Viewing the state of the church generally, may we not fear, greatly fear, that we have much of this in the present day? It is a time of drought: the heavens are much shut up: little dew, little rain falls; the ministry of the word is little, little blest: in this dark and gloomy day, this day of Zion s low condition, few showers fall upon the souls of God s people. But the heaven is often shut up as regards individuals. They often complain that they cry, and are not heard; that they come unto God, and find no access: that he covers himself with a cloud that their prayer should not pass through. When the heavens are thus shut up, when there is no passage for prayer, no access to God, no entering in within the veil, no sweet sense of union and communion, it is too often the fruit of their own disobedience and folly. If we walk contrary to the Lord, he will walk contrary to us. We shut up the heaven against ourselves.

But the same heaven that shuts out access from beneath, also shuts out rain and dew from above. What fruitfullness then can there be in the soul? What is the material earth without rain? Let there be a long season of drought, how vegetation suffers! how tree, plant, and flower, especially in hot climates, droop and wither! Much more so with the soul. If there be no spiritual rain, no dropping down of God s presence and favour, no bedewing showers of his presence and grace, how hard the heart grows! how every grace of the soul seems to droop and wither! The tender bud of hope, the expanding flower of love, the ripening fruit of practice, and the green leaf of profession, all droop and hang as it were only by the stalk, when there is neither rain nor dew. Sin, sin still the reason. If the Lord shut up heaven; if he refuse the rain, and withhold the dew; we are the guilty cause. We must clear the Lord, and not make him a partaker of our sin. This drought of soul, be it in churches, or in individuals, we for the most part procure to ourselves by our own carnality and folly.

But the first step out of this drooping state is to feel, deeply feel the miserable condition we are thus brought into. The worst state to be in is, to be barren, and not feel it; to be dry, drooping, withered, and be careless about it: to have no groans, nor sighs, though the heaven be shut up: to have no longing desires, though dew and rain be withholden. Such a state of soul as this is "nigh unto death." The first step, then, toward recovery is to feel the drought. It is so in creation. How everything which has life feels the suspension of rain and dew! how plant and flower, how all animated nature seems to look up heavenward for the showers of rain to fall! Nay, the very brute earth, the very dull clods seem to thirst for the bottles of heaven. Much more where there is life in the soul, where the grace of God dwells.

The first breaking up, then, of this withered state is, to confess, pray, supplicate, seek, beg, and desire. As Solomon says, "Yet if they pray toward this place," that is, the temple, the type and figure of the Lord Jesus Christ, "and confess thy name;" confess thy justice and righteousness in withholding rain; "and turn from their sin," renounce their idols, pluck out right eyes, cut off right arms, and turn from their iniquities, loathing and abhorring them because they are hateful in God s sight; "when thou dost afflict them; .... then," when thou hast brought them to this point, and wrought this by thy grace in their soul, "then hear thou from heaven." This is a breaking through these iron gates; "and forgive the sin of thy servants," which has brought upon them this shutting up of heaven, which has been the cause of this withholding of rain and dew. "When thou hast taught them the good way," the only way of obedience, "wherein they should walk;" when thou hast wrought in their souls these gracious fruits, then, in thy tender mercy, "send rain upon the land which thou hast given this people for an inheritance;" then, do thou bedew and water their soul, and pour upon them the abundant showers of thy grace.

IV.-But he assumes another case. It is a most comprehensive prayer. How it enters into the varied experience of the family of God! What a divine portraiture of the various cases of their souls, and the state and condition into which they fall! "If there be dearth in the land, if there be pestilence, if there be blasting or mildew, locusts, or caterpillars, if their enemies besiege them in the cities of their land; whatsoever sore or whatsoever sickness there may be."  How comprehensive!

1. "Dearth in the land" -a general famine! And is not this true now? What a general famine is there in the land! How little life and feeling is there to be found! How the souls of the Lord s people seem, for the most part, in a deep decline! How they are pining away for the want of spiritual food! There is a "dearth in the land," a grievous famine. "not of bread, but of hearing the words of the Lord."

2. "If there be pestilence:" aye, a pestilence worse than cholera -the pestilence of sin, that smites at noonday. And O, how this pestilence is at work in the professing church. assuming every form of disease -leprosy in the head, blotches in the face, wheezing in the lungs, stagnation in the heart, palsy in the arms, tottering in the knees, and debility all over! "The whole head sick, and the whole heart faint!" O sin, horrid sin, what a plague art thou to God s family! What a poison is there in thee! and how this poison runs through every artery and vein, and infects every thread, muscle, and fibre of our being!

3. "If there be blasting," or blight. How the souls of God s people are often as blighted! The cold east wind chills and nips them; and upon this follows blight. It is in grace sometimes as in nature. In early spring we walk in the fields. How beautiful the wheat looks! But alas, before harvest comes, an east wind arises; and upon the wings of the east wind rides the blight: and then where is all the verdure, the beauty that before gladdened the eyes as the precursor of an abundant harvest? Alas, alas, it is blighted. So sometimes the fruit in the garden. How well the blossom looks! what a promise of an abundant crop! But in one night it is blighted: and the fruit that looked early so promising, drops before ripened upon the ground. Is it not so in the professing church? How many young Christians promised well. They came into the church blooming with godly fear, tenderness of conscience, humility, and spiritual-mindedness. But pride and worldliness puffed them up; a nipping east wind in the shape of some powerful temptation fell upon them, and blighted their youthful promise. And what are they now? Like the fruit that hangs upon the tree, withered and blighted, proclaiming its own sad tale.

4. But there is "mildew" also: and that comes on more slowly. The blasting or blight may be a sudden stroke, done in a night: some gross sin, some slip or fall may blight a Christian for life: but the mildew comes on more gradually. Many are kept from sin outwardly who have the mildew in every leaf: business, business, business occupying the mind, engrossing the heart, filling every thought. O what a mildew is here! A person may say. It is right for me to work for my family: business must be attended to. A man would sink in this day of competition, if he swim not with the foremost, and strike out hands and feet with all his strength. Well, it may be so: yet the mildew may be in it all. But suppose you are prospering in business, and doubling your capital, or die with a good round sum in the funds, what is that, if there be mildew in your soul? If you have not the blessing of God upon you, nor Christ s grace and presence, you are but a poor mildewed professor, without the life and power of godliness. And how worldly-mindedness and covetousness grow upon a man! As a man gets into middle life, how family cares grow upon him, and often with them worldly-mindedness! And how this mildew spreads over the soul, and brings as it were a sickly hue upon all his profession! O there is much mildew everywhere! Churches and individuals are mildewed. Who in this day escapes? It is in grace as in nature: a mildew is often general; few escape some touches of it, if they escape the whole.

5. But there are "locusts" too. These are greedy creatures; they eat up all, and leave not one green thing behind. And what are vile sins and indulged lusts but locusts that eat up every green thing in the soul? O, how they champ, and champ, and champ away till every leaf falls beneath their greedy jaws! Beware of the "locusts." "The land is as the garden of Eden before them, but behind them a desolate wilderness."

6. But there are "caterpillars" also. And these you know are on the underside of the leaf. Would we look for them, we must lift the leaf up, and then we shall see the caterpillars feeding out of sight. And O, how many caterpillars may be seen when we lift up the leaf of profession! Here is a fig-tree full of leaves. But lift up the leaves, and look beneath; see the caterpillars crawling amidst the fibres, sucking all their juice. Inward secret sins make sad work with the Christian: the indulgence of any besetment will surely starve his soul.

One has this, the other that temptation: evil temper, pride, unbelief, worldly-mindedness: but of all caterpillars the most frequent and the worst are those sensual desires and carnal appetites which are so deeply interwoven with our animal nature. These are the insatiable caterpillars which feed on the young leaf of profession, and secretly undermine and suck out all its sap: so that the leaf droops and withers, and but for a revival would altogether fall off; the very profession of religion would be abandoned, the very place of worship forsaken, the back turned upon the truth, and the people of God utterly left.

7. "If their enemies besiege them in the cities of their land." They may have their cities and strong fortifications: they may fortify themselves with notions, opinions, or doctrines: and yet when their "enemies besiege them," they have no strength to resist.

8. "Whatsoever sore or whatsoever sickness there be." Blessed comprehensiveness! "Whatsoever sore!" Great, or small; beginning, or going on; deep, or shallow; "whatever sore, or whatever sickness there be;" whatever the complaint; whatever the disease -Solomon, the typical mediator, opens wide his arms, and comprehends them all. But he goes on to say, and blessed are his words, "Then what prayer or what supplication soever shall be made of any man, or of all thy people Israel, when every one shall know his own sore and his own grief, and shall spread forth his hands in this house. Solomon comes to experience; he puts his hand upon the right spot. It is knowing his "own sore," and his "own grief." You may know another man s; that will not profit you. You may read of experience in books, love to hear experimental ministers, and will hear no others; and yet not know your "own sore"," your "own grief."  Like a physician who may know the symptoms of every malady, and yet not have one malady of his own: so you may hear described every symptom of every disease, and yet be untouched by one.

But the man for whom Solomon prays is he that knows and feels, painfully feels, his "own sore" and his "own grief," whose heart is indeed a grief to him, whose sins do indeed trouble him. How painful this sore often is! how it runs night and day! how full of ulcerous matter! and how it shrinks from the probe! Most of the Lord s family have a "sore," each some tender spot. something perhaps known to himself and to God alone, the cause of his greatest grief. It may be some secret slip he has made, some sin he has commitied, some word he has spoken, or some evil thing he has done. He has been entangled, and entrapped, and cast down: and this is his grief and his sore, which he feels, and that at times deeply before God. For such Solomon prays: he casts his net upon the right side of the ship: and says. "Then hear thou from heaven thy dwelling-place, and forgive, and render unto every man according unto all his ways, whose heart thou knowest: for thou only knowest the hearts of the children of men." Yes; God alone knows the heart: he knows it completely, and sees to its very bottom.

V.- But Solomon, as a typical mediator, is not content with praying only for Israel: he casts his eye even beyond the domains of Canaan, and looks to the "stranger." "Moreover, concerning the stranger,  which is not of thy people Israel, but is come from a far country for thy great Name s sake, and thy mighty hand, and thy stretched-out arm; if they come and pray in this house, then hear thou from the heavens, even from thy dwelling-place, and do according to all that the stranger calleth to thee for." There are those among the family of God whom this description will suit. They are not members of churches; they have not cast their lot among the people of God. And as regards their experience and feelings, they cannot lay claim to the blessings of the gospel; indeed they hardly know whether or not the life of God is begun in their soul. When they hear the family of God speak of the blessings they have felt, the mercies they have received, their tongue is dumb; they have little to speak of; they can only secretly sigh and pray that God would bless them too. And yet they come "from a far country," the country of sin and carnality in which they have dwelt all their life long, and they come for God s "great Name s sake." His "great Name" has attracted their souls, drawn them near to the place where his honour dwelleth: and they have felt "his mighty hand" in convincing them of their sins, and laying them low, and "his stretched-out arm" in taking them out of the world, bringing them to confess their iniquities, and seek and supplicate for mercy.

There may be some here who cannot speak much of the dealings of God with their soul: and yet they cannot say they have no desire Godward, no feeling, no conscience, no prayer, no supplication, no hunger, no thirst after the blessings of God experimentally felt. This they dare not say: but they can say little more. Now these are "the strangers who come from a far country for God s great Name s sake, and for his mighty hand, and his stretched-out arm." that they may receive the mercy revealed in the gospel, that they may in God s time be experimentally blessed with a manifestation of his love. These "come and pray in this house," that is, in the name of, and looking only to the Lord Jesus. There is prayer in their hearts: the Lord has taught them to fear his great Name, and has put into their hearts a cry and a sigh for mercy. Now will the Lord refuse to hear their cry? "Then," prays the king of Israel, "hear thou from the heavens, even from thy dwelling-place, and do according to all that the stranger calleth to thee for."

The "stranger" calleth upon God for mercy, for a sense of pardon and manifested interest in the Lord Jesus Christ; to have his conscience sprinkled with the blood of the Lamb: and to be enabled to say without a doubt or fear, "The Lord is my God." He comes not in daring presumption; but in humility and brokenness of heart as a "stranger." He lays no claim; he makes no boast: he puts no confidence in the flesh; but comes in his real character as a "stranger," and asks the Lord to bestow upon him this and that mercy, and to give him this and that blessing simply on the ground of his free and sovereign grace. Solomon, as a typical mediator, prays to the Lord that he would do "according to all that the stranger calleth upon him for." And surely he will, he must do so for his own Name s sake; for every prayer offered up in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, under the teachings of the Spirit, will surely bring down an answer.

VI.- But Solomon returns to the manifested people of God. He puts up a passing prayer for the stranger; but his heart and eyes are upon the gathered family; and therefore he assumes another case: "If thy people go out to war against their enemies by the way that thou shalt send them, and they pray unto thee toward this city which thou hast chosen, and the house which I have built for thy name, then hear thou from the heavens their prayer and their supplication, and maintain their cause." In the first case, he assumes they were "put to the worse" before the enemy; but he speaks here of a legitimate warfare, as the apostle says, "if a man strive lawfully." There is a lawful warfare, a contending against our spiritual enemies, a conflict, a daily conflict with everything contrary to God and godliness. Now in this warfare we need the Lord s strength to be made perfect in our weakness. Strength in ourselves we have none. Not a single lust can we subdue: not one member of the old man can we put off or mortify: not a single temptation can we deliver ourselves from: not an enemy overcome by our own wisdom or strength. God must, by his Spirit, fight all our battles to bring us off more than conquerors. In this battle look we ever must to our great High Priest. Our eyes must be fixed upon the spiritual temple, and out of the fullness of the Lord Jesus all strength must come, all success flow, all victory proceed.

VII. -But as time is running on, I will come to the last case that Solomon speaks of, which I believe will meet the case of many of the Lord s family. For the beauty of this prayer is, that it takes up well-nigh every case: "If  they sin against thee for there is no man which sinneth not and thou be angry with them, and deliver them over before their enemies, and they carry them away captives unto a land far off or near." Here is the case of a poor soul carried away captive by sin. How do you and sin manage matters? Are you free from sin? If you are, Solomon has made a great mistake here; for he says, "There is no man which sinneth not."

If, then, there be no man free from sin, who, who can claim exemption? The fact is this. Men, for the most part, do not know what sin is; they do not see light in God s light; they know not the evil of their hearts: they do not feel what the apostle calls "the sin that dwelleth in them:" they are not alive to its movements and workings in their breast. But every one, without exception, taught of God, knows, and feels too, what sin is: and some feel too, that through sin they are brought into captivity, that their enemies get the better of them, and drag them away into bondage and imprisonment. Let me put to you this case. Do you never sin? I must confess. you reply, sin I do. Aye, there is not a day, nor an hour in my life in which I am free from sin. Well, let me put a question upon the back of this. How do you feel now, when sin has entangled and got the better of you? No guilt? no fear? no bondage? no darkness? no captivity? no groan ? no sigh? If so, where, where is the life of God in your soul? Where, where is the fear of God in your heart? Where, where any tenderness of conscience ? Then, if you sin, and none can claim exemption, you must, more or less. be brought into bondage. The thing is as plain to my mind as that two and two make four. Well. they are carried away captive into a land far off or near.

There are degrees of bondage. Sin sets all who feel it at a distance from God: but some sins set the soul farther from him than others. When thus carried captive, the poor prisoners lose their sweet confidence; they have not the same access to God as before, and they are in their feelings at a great, often a very great distance from God. But are they left there? Has the Lord no longer any regard to them? Does he forget their captivity and imprisonment ? "Yet there," Solomon says, "if they bethink themselves." God puts the thought into their heart; it is with them as with the prodigal, "they come to themselves:.... they bethink themselves." Sin has rushed in upon them like a flood, it has carried them away, swept them into captivity. Yet, "they bethink themselves:" gracious thoughts spring up in their souls; the Lord touches their hearts with his finger, and "they bethink themselves" of where they are, and where they have been, what they have done, and the condition they have fallen into; and "they return and pray in the land of their captivity," saying, "We have sinned, we have done amiss, and have dealt wickedly." Confession, honest, deep confession of their backsliding and sin! And then, flowing out of that, "if they return to thee with all their heart and with all their soul." It must be with all the heart, with all the soul: no half measures will do when they are in the land of their captivity, whither they have been carried captives: and "pray toward this land which thou gavest unto their fathers, and toward the city which thou hast chosen, and toward the house which I have built for thy name; then hear thou from the heavens, even from thy dwelling-place, their prayer and their supplication, and maintain their cause, and forgive thy people which have sinned against thee" -forgive them all their sins when they return unto the Lord.

Now these are the cases that Solomon, as a typical mediator, has assumed: and they are suitable, most suitable.

But to whom? Not to all, but to those who feel, who are exercised in their souls: who know, as Solomon sweetly speaks, "each his own grief and his own sore." Do you feel it? Is this the experience of your soul? Are these some of the exercises and sorrows and grievings of our heart Godward? Then, what a mercy that there is a mediator like Jesus: that there is a temple in which the fullness of Godhead dwells: that the eyes of God are upon this temple from one end of the year to the other, and that he hears all prayer which is offered up in the name of Jesus, when eye and heart are fixed upon him! However deep, however sorrowful be your case, there is still room for encouragement: there is still ground for hope whilst Jesus lives, and the life of God is in the breast.

The Lord appeared, we read, to Solomon by night, and said unto him, "I have heard thy prayer....Now mine eyes shall be open, and mine ears attent unto the prayer that is made in this place. For now have I chosen and sanctified this house, that my name may be there for ever: and mine eyes and mine heart shall be there perpetually." It is for Jesus sake that all prayer is heard, and this is the ground of every gracious answer. The petitions offered by Solomon are for living souls, for those who have some divine feelings in their breast. How deep that feeling is, I will not determine; but there must be some life, some feeling in the soul, in order to have an interest in this comprehensive prayer. God in mercy grant that we may enter into the blessedness, beauty, and suitability of it; that having such a Mediator at God s right hand, such a great High Priest over the house of God, we may be encouraged under every case, in every state, and in every condition, to make our wants and suplications known unto God. And, be assured, the soul that does this will be heard and answered sooner or later for Christ s sake.