HOMILY ON THE STATE OF MATRIMONY
AN HOMILIE OF
the state of Matrimonie
THE word of Almightie GOD doth testifie and declare, whence the originall beginning of Matrimony commeth, and why it is ordained. It is instituted of GOD, to the intent that man and woman should liue lawfully in a perpetuall friendship, to bring foorth fruite, and to auoide Fornication. By which meane a good conscience might bee preserued on both parties, in brideling the corrupt inclinations of the flesh, within the limites of honestie. For GOD hath straitly forbidden all whoredome and vncleannesse, and hath from time to time taken grieuous punishment of this inordinate lust, as all stories and ages haue declared. Furthermore it is also ordained, that the Church of GOD and his kingdome might by this kinde of life be conserued and enlarged, not onely in that GOD giueth children by his blessing, but also in that: they be brought vp by the Parents godly, in the knowledge of GODS word, that thus the knowledge of GOD and true Religion might bee deliuered by succession from one to another that finally many might enioy that euerlasting immortalitie. Wherefore, forasmuch as Matrimonie serueth vs as well to auoide sinne and offence, as to encrease the kingdome of GOD: you, as all other which enter the state, must acknowledge this benefit of GOD, with pure and thankefull minds, for that he hath so ruled your hearts, that yee follow not the example of the wicked world, who set their delight in filthinesse of sinne, but both of you stand in the feare of GOD, and abhorre all filthinesse. For that is surely the singular gift of GOD, where the common example of the world declareth how the diuell hath their hearts bound and entangled in diuers snares, so that they in their wiuelesse state runne into open abominations, without any grudge of their conscience. Which sort of men that liue so desperately, and filthy, what damnation tarieth for them, Saint Paul describeth it to them, saying: Neither whoremonger, neither adulterers, shall inherite the kingdome of GOD (1 Corinthians 6.9). This horrible iudgement of GOD yee bee escaped through his mercie, if so bee that yee liue inseparately, according to GODS ordinance. But yet I would not haue you carelesse without watching. For the deuill will assay to attempt all things to interrupt and hinder your hearts and godly purpose, if ye will giue him any entry. For hee will either labour to breake this godly knot once begun betwixt you, or else at the least hee will labour to encumber it with diuers griefes and displeasures.
And this is the principall craft, to worke dissension of hearts of the one from the other: That whereas now there is pleasant and sweet loue betwixt you, he will in the stead thereof, bring in most bitter & vnpleasant discord, And surely that same aduersarie of ours, doeth, as it were from aboue, assault mans nature and condition. For this folly is euer from our tender age growne vp with vs, to haue a desire to rule, to thinke highly of our selfe, so that none thinketh it meet to giue place to another. That wicked vice of stubborne will and selfe loue, is more meet to breake and to disseuer the loue of heart, then to preserue concord. Wherefore married persons must apply their minds in most earnest wise to concorde, and must craue continually of GOD the helpe of his holy Spirit, so to rule their hearts, and to knit their minds together, that they be not disseuered by any diuision of discord. This necessitie of prayer, must be oft in the practise and vsing of married persons, that oft times the one should pray for the other, lest hate and debate doe arise betwixt them. And because few doe consider this thing, but more few doe performe it (I say to pray diligently) we see how wonderfull the diuell deludeth and scorneth this state, how few Matrimonies there be without chidings, brawlings, tauntings, repentings, bitter cursings, and fightings. Which things whosoeuer doth commit, they doe not consider that it is the instigation of the ghostly enemie, who taketh great delight therein: For else they would with all earnest endeauour, striue against these mischiefes, not onely with prayer, but also with all possible diligence. Yea they would not giue place to the prouocation of wrath, which stirreth them either to such rough and sharpe words, or stripes, which is surely compassed by the diuell, whose temptation, if it be followed, must needs beginne and weaue the web of all miseries, and sorrowes. For this is most certainely true, that of such beginnings must needs ensue the breach of true concord in heart, whereby all loue must needes shortly be banished. Then can it not be but a miserable thing to behold, that yet they are of necessity compelled to liue together, which yet can not bee in quiet together. And this is most customably euery where to bee seene. But what is the cause thereof? Forsooth because they will not consider the craftie traines of the diuell, and therefore giue not themselues to pray to GOD, that hee would vouchsafe to represse his power. Moreouer, they doe not consider how they promote the purpose of the diuell, in that they follow the wrath of their hearts, while they threat one another, while they in their folly turne all vpside downe, while they will neuer giue ouer their right as they esteeme it, yea, while many times they will not giue ouer the wrong part in deed. Learne thou therefore, if thou desirest to be void of all these miseries, if thou desirest to liue peaceably and comfortably in wedlocke, how to make thy earnest prayer to GOD, that he would gouerne both your heartes by the holy Spirit, to restraine the Diuels power, whereby your concorde may remaine perpetually. But to this prayer must bee ioyned a singular diligence, whereof Saint Peter giueth this precept, saying, You husbands, deale with your weaker vessell, and as vnto them that are heires also of the grace of life, that your prayers bee not hindered (1 Peter 3.7). This precept doth particularly pertaine to the husband: for hee ought to be the leader and authour of loue, in cherishing and increasing concord, which then shall take place, if hee will vse moderation and not tyranny, and if he yeelde some thing to the woman. For the woman is a weake creature, not indued with like strength and constancie of minde, therefore they be the sooner disquieted, and they be the more prone to all weake affections & dispositions of mind, more then men bee, & lighter they bee, and more vaine in their fantasies & opinions. These things must bee considered of the man, that hee be not too stiffe, so that he ought to winke at some thinges, and must gently expounde all things, and to forbeare. Howbeit the common sort of men doeth iudge, that such moderation should not become a man: For they say that it is a token of womanish cowardnesse, and therefore they thinke that it is a mans part to fume in anger, to fight with fiste and staffe. Howbeit, howsoeuer they imagine, vndoubtedly Saint Peter doth better iudge what should be seeming to a man, and what he should most reasonably performe. For he saith, reasoning should be vsed, and not fighting. Yea hee saith more, that the woman ought to haue a certaine honour attributed to her, that is to say, shee must bee spared and borne with, the rather for that she is the weaker vessell, of a fraile heart, inconstant, and with a word soone stirred to wrath. And therefore considering these her frailties, shee is to be the rather spared. By this meanes, thou shalt not onely nourish concord: but shalt haue her heart in thy power and will. For honest natures will sooner bee reteined to doe their dueties, rather by gentle words, then by stripes. But hee which will doe all things with extremitie and seueritie, and doeth vse alwayes rigor in words and stripes, what will that auaile in the conclusion? Verely nothing, but that hee thereby setteth forward the diuels worke, hee banisheth away concord, charitie, and sweete amity, and bringeth in dissension, hatred, & yrkesomnesse, the greatest griefes that can be in the mutuall loue and felowship of mans life. Beyond all this, it bringeth another euill therewith, for it is the destruction and interruption of prayer: For in the time that the minde is occupied with dissention and discord, there can bee no true prayer vsed. For the Lords prayer hath not onely a respect to particular persons, but to the whole vniuersall, in the which wee openly pronounce, that we will forgiue them which haue offended against vs, euen as we aske forgiuenesse of our sinnes of GOD, Which thing how canne it be done rightly, when their hearts be at dissension? How can they pray each for other, when they bee at hate betwixt themselues? Now, if the ayde of prayer bee taken away, by what meanes can they sustaine themselues in any comfort? For they cannot otherwise either resist the deuill, or yet haue their heartes staide in stable comfort in all perills and necessities, but by prayer. Thus all discommodities, as well worldly as ghostly, follow this froward testines, and cumbrous fiercenesse, in maners, which bee more meete for bruite beastes, then for reasonable creatures. Saint Peter doeth not allow these things, but the diuell desireth them gladly. Wherefore take the more heede. And yet a man may be a man, although hee doeth not vse such extremitie, yea although hee should dissemble some things in his wiues manners. And this is the part of a Christian man, which both pleaseth GOD, and serueth also in good vse to the comfort of their mariage state. Now as concerning the wiues duety. What shall become her? shall she abuse the gentlenesse and humanity of her husband and, at her pleasure, turne all things vpside downe? No surely. For that is far repugnant against GODS commandement, For thus doeth Saint Peter preach to them, Yee wiues, be ye in subiection to obey your owne husbands (1 Peter 3.1). To obey, is another thing then to controle or command, which yet they may doe, to their children, and to their family: But as for their husbands, them must they obey, and cease from commanding, and performe subiection. For this surely doth nourish concord very much, when the wife is ready at hand at her husbands commandement, when she will apply her selfe to his will, when shee endeuoureth her selfe to seeke his contentation, and to doe him pleasure, when shee will eschewe all things that might offend him: For thus will most truely bee verified the saying of the Poet, A good wife by obeying her husband, shall beare the rule, so that he shall haue a delight and a gladnesse, the sooner at all times to returne home to her. But on the contrary part, when the wiues bee stubborne, froward, and malipert, their husbands are compelled therby to abhorre and flee from their owne houses, euen as they should haue battaile with their enemies. Howbeit, it can skantly be, but that some offences shall sometime chance betwixt them: For no man doth liue without fault, specially for that the woman is the more fraile partie. Therefore let them beware that they stand not in their faultes and wilfullnesse: but rather let them acknowledge their follies, and say, My husband, so it is, that by my anger I was compelled to doe this or that forgiue it me, and hereafter I will take better heede. Thus ought the woman more readily to doe, the more they be ready to offend. And they shall not doe this onely to auoyd strife and debate: but rather in the respect of the commandement of GOD, as Saint Paul expresseth it in this forme of words, Let women bee subiect to their husbands as to the Lorde: for the husband is the head of the woman, as Christ is the head of the Church (Ephesians 5.22-23). Here you vnderstand, that GOD hath commanded that ye should acknowledge the authoritie of the husband, and referre to him the honour of obedience. And Saint Peter saith in that place before rehearsed, that holy matrons did in former time decke themselues, not with gold and siluer, but in putting their whole hope in GOD, and in obeying their husbands, as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, whose daughters ye bee (saith he) if yee follow her example. This sentence is very meete for women to print in their remembrance. Trueth it is, that they must specially feele the griefe and paines of their Matrimonie, in that they relinquish the liberty of their owne rule, in the paine of their trauailing, in the bringing vp of their children. In which offices they be in great perils, and be grieued with great afflictions, which they might bee without if they liued out of Matrimonie. But S. Peter sayth, that this is the chiefe ornament of holy matrons, in that they set their hope and trust in GOD, that is to say, in that they refused not from mariage for the businesse thereof, for the giftes and perils thereof: but committed all such aduentures to GOD, in most sure trust of helpe, after that they haue called vpon his ayde. O woman, doe thou the like, and so shalt thou be most excellently beautified before GOD and all his Angels & Saints, and thou needest not to seeke further for doing any better workes. For, obey thy husband, take regard of his requests, and giue heede vnto him in perceiue what he requireth of thee, and so shalt thou honour GOD and liue peaceably in thy house. And beyond all this, GOD shall follow thee with his benediction, that all things shall well prosper, both to thee and to thy husband, as the Psalme saith: Blessed is the man which feareth GOD, and walketh in his wayes, thou shalt haue the fruit of thine owne hands, happy shalt thou be, and well it shall goe with thee. Thy wife shal be as a vine, plentifully spreading about thy house. Thy children shalbe as the young springs of the Oliues about thy table. Loe thus shall that man be blessed (saith Dauid) that feareth the Lord. This let the wife haue euer in minde, the rather admonished thereto by the apparell of her head. whereby is signified, that she is vnder couert or obedience of her husband. And as that apparell is of nature so appointed, to declare her subiection: So biddeth Saint Paul that all other of her rayment should expresse both shamefastnesse and sobriety. For if it be not lawfull for the woman to haue her head bare, but to beare thereon the signe of her power, wheresoeuer she goeth: more is it required that she declare the thing that is ment therby. And therefore these ancient women of the old world called their husbands lords, and shewed them reuerence in obeying them. But peraduenture shee will say, that those men loued their wiues indeede. I know that well ynough, & beare it well in minde. But when I doe admonish you of your dueties, then call not to consideration what their dueties be. For when we our selues doe teach our children to obey vs as their parents, or when we reforme our seruants, and tell them that they should obey their masters, not only at the eye, but as the Lord: If they should tell vs againe our dueties, we should not thinke it well done. For when we be admonished of our dueties and faults, wee ought not then to seeke what other mens dueties be. For though a man had a companion in his fault, yet should he not thereby be without his fault. But this must be onely looked on, by what meanes thou mayest make thy selfe without blame. For Adam did lay the blame vpon the woman, and she turned it vnto the serpent: but yet neither of them was thus excused. And therefore bring not such excuses to me at this time: but apply all thy diligence to heare thine obedience to thine husband. For when I take in hand to admonish thy husband to loue thee, and to cherish thee: yet will I not cease to set out the law that is appointed for the woman, aswell as I would require of the man what is written for his law. Goe thou therefore about such things as becommeth thee only, & shew thy selfe tractable to thy husband. Or rather if thou wilt obey thy husband for GODS precept, then alledge such things as be in his duty to doe, but performe thou diligently those things which the lawmaker hath charged thee to doe: For thus is it most reasonable to obey GOD, if thou wilt not suffer thy selfe to transgresse his law. He that loueth his friend, seemeth to doe no great thing: but he that honoureth that is hurtfull & hatefull to him, this man is worthy most commendation: Euen so think you, if thou canst suffer an extreme husband, thou shalt haue a great reward therefore: But if thou louest him only because he is gentle & courteous, what reward will GOD giue thee therefore? Yet I speake not these things that I would wish the husbands to bee sharpe towards their wiues: But I exhort the women that they would patiently beare the sharpnesse of their husbands. For when either partes doe their best to performe their duties the one to the other, then followeth thereon great profite to their neighbours for their examples sake. For when the woman is ready to suffer a sharpe husband, & the man will not extremely intreate his stubborne & troublesome wife, then be all things in quiet, as in a most sure hauen. Euen thus was it done in old time, that euery one did their owne duety and office, and was not busie to require the duetie of their neighbours. Consider I pray thee that Abraham tooke to him his brothers sonne, his wife did not blame him therefore. He commanded him to goe with him a long iourney, she did not gainesay it, but obeyed his precept.
Againe, after all those great miseries, labours and paines of that iourney, when Abraham was made as lord ouer all, yet did he giue place to Lot of his superioritie: which matter Sara tooke so little to griefe, that she neuer once suffered her tongue to speake such wordes as the common manner of women is woont to doe in these dayes, when they see their husbands in such roomes, to bee made vnderlings, and to bee put vnder their yongers, then they vpbrayd them with combrous talke, and call them fooles, dastards, and cowards for so doing. But Sara was so farre from speaking any such thing, that it came neuer into her minde and thought so to say, but allowed the wisedome & will of her husband. Yea, besides all this, after the said Lot had thus his will, and left to his vncle the lesse portion of land, hee chanced to fall into extreme perill: Which chance when it came to the knowledge of this said Patriarch, he incontinently put all his men in harnesse, and prepared himselfe with all his familie & friends, against the host of the Persians. In which case, Sara did not counsaile him to the contrary, nor did say, as then might haue beene said: My husband, whither goest thou so vnaduisedly? Why runnest thou thus on head? Why doest thou offer thy selfe to so great perilles, and art thus ready to ieopard thine owne life, and to perill the liues of all thine, for such a man as hath done thee such wrong? At the least way, if thou regardest not thy selfe, yet haue compassion on me, which for thy loue haue forsaken my kinred & my countrey, and haue the want both of my friends and kinsesfolkes, and am thus come into so farre countreys with thee, haue pitie on mee, and make me not here a widow, to cast mee into such cares and troubles. Thus might she haue said: but Sara neither said nor thought such words, but she kept herselfe in silence in all things. Furthermore, all that time when she was barren, and tooke no paines, as other women did, by bringing foorth fruit in his house? What did he? He complained not to his wife, but to Almighty GOD. And consider how either of them did their duties as became them: for neither did hee dispise Sara, because shee was barren, nor neuer did cast it in her teeth. Consider againe how Abraham expelled the handmaid out of the house, when she required it: So that by this I may truely prooue, that the one was pleased and contented with the other in all things: But yet set not your eyes onely on this matter, but looke further what was done before this, that Agar vsed her mistresse dispitefully, and that Abraham himselfe was somewhat prouoked against her, which must needes bee an intolerable matter, and a painfull, to a free hearted woman & a chaste. Let not therefore the woman be too busie to call for the duty of her husband, where shee should be ready to performe her owne, for that is not worthy any great commendations. And euen so againe, let not the man only consider what belongeth to the woman, and to stand too earnestly gazing thereon, for that is not his part or duty. But as I haue said, let either party be ready and willing to performe that which belongeth especially to themselues. For if wee be bound to hold out our left cheeke to strangers which will smite vs on the right cheeke: how much more ought wee to suffer an extreme and vnkind husband? But yet I meane not that a man should beat his wife, GOD forbid that, for that is the greatest shame that can be, not so much to her that is beaten, as to him that doth the deed. But if by such fortune thou chancest vpon such an husband, take it not too heauily, but suppose thou, that thereby is laid vp no small reward hereafter, & in this life time no small commendation to thee, if thou canst be quiet. But yet to you that be men, thus I speake, Let there bee none so grieuous fault to compell you to beat your wiues. But what say I, your wiues? no, it is not to be borne with, that an honest man should lay hands on his maide seruant to beat her. Wherefore if it be a great shame for a man to beat his bondseruant, much more rebuke it is, to lay violent hands vpon his freewoman. And this thing may be well vnderstood by the lawes which the Panims haue made, which doth discharge her any longer to dwell with such an husband, as vnworthy to haue any further company with her that doeth smite her. For it is an extreme point, thus so vilely to entreat her like a slaue, that is fellow to thee of thy life, and so ioyned vnto thee before time in the necessary matters of thy liuing. And therfore a man may well liken such a man (if he may be called a man, rather then a wild beast) to a killer of his father or his mother. And whereas wee be commanded to forsake our father and mother, for our wiues sake, and yet thereby doe worke them none iniurie, but doe fulfill the Law of GOD: How can it not appeare then to bee a point of extreame madnesse, to entreate her dispitefully, for whose sake GOD hath commaunded thee to leaue parents? Yea, who can suffer such despite? Who can worthily expresse the inconuenience that is, to see what weepings and waylings bee made in the open streetes, when neighbours runne together to the house of so vnruly an husband, as to a Bedlem man, who goeth about to ouerturne all that hee hath at home? Who would not thinke that it were better for such a man to wish the ground to open, and swallow him in, then once euer after to bee seene in the market? But peraduenture thou wilt obiect, that the woman prouoketh thee to this point. But consider thou againe that the woman is a fraile vessel, and thou art therefore made the ruler and head ouer her, to beare the weakenesse of her in this her subiection. And therefore studie thou to declare the honest commendation of thine authoritie, which thou canst no way better doe, then to forbeare to vrge her in her weakenesse and subiection. For euen as the King appeareth so much the more noble, the more excellent and noble hee maketh his officers and lieuetenants, whom if hee should dishonour, and despise the authoritie of their dignitie, he should depriue himselfe of a great part of his owne honour: Euen so, if thou doest despise her that is set in the next roome beside thee, thou doest much derogate and decay the excellencie and vertue of thine owne authoritie. Recount all these things in thy minde, and be gentle and quiet. Vnderstand that GOD hath giuen thee children with her, and art made a father, and by such reason appease thy selfe. Doest thou not see the husbandmen what diligence they vse to till that ground which once they haue taken to farme, though it be neuer so full of faults? As for an example, though it be dry, though it bringeth forth weedes, though the soyle cannot beare too much wette, yet he tilleth it, and so winneth fruit thereof: Euen in like manner, if thou wouldest vse like diligence to instruct and order the minde of thy spouse, if thou wouldest diligently apply thy selfe to weede out by little and little the noysome weedes of vncomely maners out of her minde, with wholesome precepts, it could not bee, but in time thou shouldest feele the pleasant fruit thereof to both your comforts. Therefore that this thing chance not so, performe this thing that I doe here counsaile thee: Whensoeuer any displeasant matter riseth at home, if thy wife hath done ought amisse, comfort her, & increase not the heauines. For though thou shouldest be grieued with neuer so many things, yet shalt thou finde nothing more grieuous then to want the beneuolence of thy wife at home. What offence soeuer thou canst name, yet shalt thou finde none more intolerable, then to be at debate with thy wife. And for this cause most of all oughtest thou to haue this loue in reuerence. And if reason moueth thee to beare any burden at any other mens hands, much more at thy wiues. For if she be poore, vpbraid her not, if she be simple, taunt her not, but be the more curteous: for she is thy body, and made one flesh with thee. But thou peraduenture wilt say that she is a wrathfull woman, a drunkard, and beastly, without wit and reason. For this cause bewayle her the more. Chafe not in anger, but pray vnto Almighty GOD. Let her bee admonished and helped with good counsaile, and doe thou thy best endeuour, that she may be deliuered of all these affections. But if thou shouldest beate her, thou shalt encrease her euill affections: For frowardnesse and sharpnesse, is not amended with frowardnesse, but with softnesse and gentlenesse. Furthermore, consider what reward thou shalt haue at GODS hand: For where thou mightest beate her, and yet, for the respect of the feare of GOD, thou wilt absteine and beare patiently her great offences, the rather in respect of that Law which forbiddeth that a man should cast out his wife what fault soeuer shee bee made the combred with, thou shalt haue a very great reward, and before the receit of that reward, thou shalt feele many commodities. For by this meanes she shall bee more obedient, and thou for her sake shalt be made the more meeke. It is written in a storie of a certaine strange Philosopher, which had a cursed wife, a froward and a drunkard. When he was asked for what consideration hee did so beare her euill manners? He made answere, By this meanes (sayd hee) I haue at home a Schoolemaster, and an example how I should behaue my selfe abroad: For I shall (saith hee) bee the more quiet with others, being thus dayly exercised and taught in the forbearing of her. Surely it is a shame that Panims should be wiser then we, we I say, that be commanded to resemble angels, or rather GOD himselfe through meekenesse. And for the loue of vertue, this sayd Philosopher Socrates would not expell his wife out of his house. Yea, some say that hee did therefore mary his wife, to learne this vertue by that occasion. Wherefore, seeing many men bee farre behinde the wisedome of this man, my counsell is, that first and before all things, a man doe his best endeuour to get him a good wife, endued with all honestie and vertue: But if it so chaunce that he is deceiued, that hee hath chosen such a wife as is neither good nor tolerable, then let the husband follow this Philosopher, and let him instruct his wife in euery condition, and neuer lay these matters to sight. For the Marchant man, except hee first bee at composition with his factour to vse his interfayres quietly, hee will neither stirre his shippe to sayle, nor yet will lay handes vpon his marchandize: Euen so, let vs doe all things, that we may haue the fellowship of our wiues, which is the factour of all our doings at home, in great quiet and rest. And by these meanes all things shall prosper quietly, and so shall we passe through the dangers of the troublous sea of this world. For this state of life will bee more honourable and comfortable then our houses, then seruants, then money, then landes and possessions, then all things that can bee told. As all these with sedition and discord, can neuer worke vs any comfort: So shall all things turne to our commoditie and pleasure, if wee draw this yoke in one concord of heart and minde. Whereupon doe your best endeuour, that after this sort ye vse your Matrimony, and so shall yee be armed on euery side. Yee haue escaped the snares of the deuill, and the vnlawfull lustes of the flesh, yee haue the quietnesse of conscience by this institution of Matrimony ordeined by GOD: therefore vse oft prayer to him, that hee would bee present by you, that hee would continue concord and charitie betwixt you. Doe the best yee can of your partes, to custome your selues to softnesse and meekenesse, and beare well in worth such ouersights as chaunce: and thus shall your conuersation bee most pleasant and comfortable. And although (which can no otherwise bee) some aduersities shall follow, and otherwhiles now one discommodity, now another shall appeare: yet in this common trouble and aduersity, lift vp both your hands vnto heauen, call vpon the helpe and assistance of GOD, the authour of your mariage, and surely the promise of releefe is at hand. For Christ affirmeth in his Gospel, Where two or three be gathered together in my name, and bee agreed, what matter soeuer they pray for, it shalbe granted them of my heauenly father. Why therefore shouldest thou be afrayd of the danger, where thou hast so ready a promise, and so nigh an helpe? Furthermore, you must vnderstand how necessary it is for Christian folke to beare Christs crosse: for else we shall neuer feele how comfortable GODS helpe is vnto vs. Therefore giue thanks to GOD for his great benefit, in that yee haue taken vpon you this state of wedlocke, and pray you instantly, that Almighty GOD may luckily defend and maintaine you therein, that neither yee bee ouercome with any temptations, nor with any aduersity. But before all things, take good heede that yee giue no occasion to the diuell to let and hinder your prayers by discord and dissension : for there is no stronger defence and stay in all our life, then is prayer, in the which wee may call for the helpe of GOD and obtayne it, whereby we may win his blessing, his grace, his defence, and protection, so to continue therein to a better life to come: Which grant vs he that died for vs all, to whom bee all honour and prayse, for euer and euer, Amen.
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