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(john xx. 19-31.)
19Then the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews, came Jesus and stood in the midst, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you.
20And when he had so said, he shewed unto them his hands and his side. Then were the disciples glad, when they saw the LORD.
21Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.
22And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:
23Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.
24But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came.
25The other disciples therefore said unto him, We have seen the LORD. But he said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe.
26And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you.
27Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing.
28And Thomas answered and said unto him, My LORD and my God.
29Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed.
30And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book:
31But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.
Most merciful God and Father, receive, we beseech thee, our hearty thanks for thy great goodness ; and especially for the blessings and mercies bestowed upon us this day. "We bless thee for the preaching of thy word, and for the administration of thy holy sacraments. We bless thee for thy gracious condescension, in having thy habitation among the sons of men, and in dwelling in the midst of the assemblies of thy people. Let thy blessing rest, we beseech thee, upon those whom thou hast called to minister in holy things; let them be clothed with righteousness; and let thy people rejoice in thy salvation. Grant that the words spoken in thy name may not be spoken in vain. Grant us grace so to hear and receive the godly counsel and instruction of those who are set over us in the Lord, that in all our words and deeds we may seek thy glory and the increase of thy kingdom.
We bless thee, heavenly Father, for the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ as the resurrection and the life, and for the gracious declaration, that whosoever liveth and believeth in him shall never die. Grant us grace to humble ourselves before- thee, knowing that thou art able to exalt us in due time. May we follow the example of thy dearly-beloved Son, in patience, meekness, and humility. And as he died and rose again for us, so may we, who are baptized into his death, die from sin, and rise again unto righteousness, continually mortifying all our evil and corrupt affections, and daily proceeding in all virtue and godliness of living.
We commend to thy rich mercies in Christ Jesus, all the nations that are sitting in darkness and in the shadow of death. May the Sun of Righteousness rise upon them, and the light of the everlasting gospel shine into their hearts, to give them the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
Have mercy on the house of Israel, and teach them by thy Spirit to know that thou hast made that same Jesus, whom their forefathers crucified, both Lord and Christ.
Awaken the impenitent to a sense of their danger, by putting them in remembrance that thou hast appointed a day in which thou wilt judge the world in righteousness, by him whom thou hast ordained, whereof thou hast given assurance unto all men, in that thou hast raised him from the dead.
O Lord, I thank thee for this opportunity of worshiping thee in thy holy temple; pardon the wanderings of my heart, and accept my prayers and thanksgivings. Let thy word be profitable to my soul, and bless me and all who have waited upon thee, for thy dear Son's sake, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
And now, 0 God, we commit ourselves, and all who are near and dear to us, to thy holy keeping. Let us go to our rest in humble trust and confidence in thy unfailing mercy. And let us remember, as we close our eyes in sleep, that the hour is coming in the which all that are in the graves shall hear the voice of the Son of man, and shall come forth— they that have done good, to the resurrection of life, and they that have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation. And may we be so prepared by thy grace for this event, that, when our mortal bodies shall be committed to the ground, they may rest in sure and certain hope of a joyful resurrection to eternal life, through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with thee, 0 Father, and the Holy Ghost, be all honor and glory, world without end.