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Practice of Piety 17 - Meditations for the Morning.

By Lewis Bayly

      1. Almighty God can, in the resurrection, as easily raise up thy body out of the grave, from the sleep of death, as he hath this morning wakened thee in thy bed, out of the sleep of nature. At the dawning of which resurrection day, Christ shall come to be glorified in his saints; and every one of the bodies of the thousands of his saints, being fashioned like unto his glorious body, shall shine as bright as the sun (2 Thess. i. 10; Jude, ver. 14; Phil. iii. 21; Luke ix. 31;) all the angels shining likewise in their glory; the body of Christ surpassing them all in splendour and glory; and the Godhead excelling it. If the rising of one sun make the morning sky so glorious, what a bright shining and glorious morning will that be, when so many thousand thousands of bodies, far brighter than the sun, shall appear and accompany Christ as his glorious train, coming to keep his general session of righteousness, and to judge the wicked angels, and all ungodly men (Acts xvii. 31; 1 Cor. vi. 3; Jude, ver. 15;) and let not any transitory profit, pleasure, or vain glory of this day, cause thee to lose thy part and portion of the eternal bliss and glory of that day, which is properly termed the resurrection of the just (Luke xiv. 14.) Beasts have bodily eyes to see the ordinary light of the day: but endeavour thou with the eyes of faith, to foresee the glorious light of that day.

      2. Thou knowest not how near, the evil spirit which night and day, like a roaring lion, walketh about seeking to devour thee (1 Pet. v. 8; Job i. 7) was to thee while thou wast asleep and not able to help thyself; and thou knowest not what mischief he would have done to thee, had not God hedged thee and thine with his ever-waking Providence, and guarded thee with his holy and blessed angels (Job i. 10; Psal. cxxi. 4; Psalm 34:7; Gen. xxxii. 1, 2; 2 Kings vi. 16.)

      3. If thou hearest the cock crow, remember Peter, to imitate him (Luke xxii. 61, 62;) and call to mind that cock-crowing sound of the last trumpet, which shall waken thee from the dead. And consider in what case thou wert, if it sounded now, and become such as thou wouldst then wish to be; lest at that day thou shouldst wish that thou hadst never seen this; yea, curse the day of thy natural birth, for want of being new-born by spiritual grace (Jer. xx. 14; Job iii. 1; Tit. iii. 5.) When the cock crows the thief despairs of his hope, and gives over his night's enterprise: so the devil ceases to tempt, or attempt any further, when he hears the devout soul wakening herself with morning prayer.

      4. Remember that Almighty God is about thy bed, and seeth thy down-lying, and thy up-rising; under-standeth thy thoughts, and is acquainted with all thy ways (Psal. cxxxix. 2, 3.) Remember likewise that his holy angels, who guarded and watched over thee all night, do also behold how thou wakest and risest (Gen. xxxi. 55; xxxii. 1, 2.) Do all things, therefore, as in the awful presence of God, and in the sight of his holy angels (Psal. xci. 5, 11; Acts xii. 11.)

      5. As thou art putting on thine apparel, remember that they were first given as coverings of shame, being the effects of sin; and that they are made but of the offals of dead beasts. Therefore, whether thou respect the stuff, or the first institution, thou hast so little cause to be proud of them, that thou hast great cause to be humbled at the sight and wearing of them, seeing the richest apparel are but fine covers of shame. Meditate rather, that as thine apparel serves to cover thy shame, and to fence thy body from cold, so thou shouldst be as careful to cover thy soul with that wedding garment which is the righteousness of Christ (because apprehended by our faith), called the righteousness of the saints (Matt. xxii. 11; Rom. xiii. 14; 1 Cor. i. 30; Philippians 3:9; Revelation 19:8; Ephesians 4:24;) lest, while we are richly apparelled in the sight of men, we be not found to walk naked (so that all our filthiness be seen) in the sight of God (Rev. xvi. 15.) But that with his righteousness, as with a robe, we may cover ourselves from perpetual shame; and shield our souls from that fiery cold that will procure eternal weeping, and gnashing of teeth (Matt. xxii. 13.) And withal consider how blessed a people were our nation, if every silken suit did cover a sanctified soul. And yet a man would think, that on whom God bestowed most of these outward blessings, of them he should receive greatest inward thanks (Luke xii. 48.) But if it prove otherwise, their reckoning will prove the heavier in the day of their accounts.

      6. Consider how God's mercy is renewed unto thee every morning, in giving thee, as it were, a new life Lam. iii. 23; Psal. xix. 5), and in causing the sun, after his incessant race, to rise again to give thee light. Let not, then, this glorious light burn in vain; but prevent rather (as oft as thou canst) the sun rising to give God thanks (Luke xii. 48;) and kneeling down at thy bedside, salute him at the day-spring with some devout antelucanum or morning soliloquy: containing an humble confession of thy sins, seeking the pardon of all thy faults, a thanksgiving for all his benefits, and a craving of his gracious protection to his church, thyself, and all that belong to thee.

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See Also:
   Practice of Piety 1 - Directing a Christian How to Walk, that He May Please God.
   Practice of Piety 2 - A Plain Description of the Essence and Attributes of God
   Practice of Piety 3 - Meditations of the Misery of a Man Not Reconciled to God in Christ.
   Practice of Piety 4 - Meditations of the Miseries of Man from Infancy to Old Age.
   Practice of Piety 5 - Meditations of the Misery of the Soul in this Life.
   Practice of Piety 6 - Meditations of the Misery of the Body and Soul in Death.
   Practice of Piety 7 - Meditations of the Misery of a Man after Death.
   Practice of Piety 8 - Blessedness of the Regenerate
   Practice of Piety 9 - Meditations of the blessed state of a Regenerate Man in his Death.
   Practice of Piety 10 - Meditations of the blessed state of the Regenerate Man after Death.
   Practice of Piety 11 - Meditations of the blessed state of a Regenerate Man in Heaven.
   Practice of Piety 12 - Of the Prerogatives which the Elect shall enjoy in Heaven.
   Practice of Piety 13 - Of the Effects of those Prerogatives.
   Practice of Piety 14 - Meditations directing a Christian how to apply to himself.
   Practice of Piety 15 - Meditations on the Hindrances which Keep a Sinner from Piety.
   Practice of Piety 16 - How a Private Man Must Begin the Morning with Piety.
   Practice of Piety 17 - Meditations for the Morning.
   Practice of Piety 18 - Brief Directions How to Read the Holy Scriptures Once A Year
   Practice of Piety 19 - A Prayer for the Morning.
   Practice of Piety 20 - Meditations to stir us up to Morning Prayer.
   Practice of Piety 21 - Another short Morning Prayer.
   Practice of Piety 22 - Farther Meditations to stir up to Prayer in the Morning.
   Practice of Piety 23 - A brief Prayer for the Morning.
   Practice of Piety 24 - Meditations Directing a Christian How To Walk All the Day with God
   Practice of Piety 25 - Secondly, for thy Words.
   Practice of Piety 26 - Thirdly, for thy Actions.
   Practice of Piety 27 - Meditations for the Evening.
   Practice of Piety 28 - A Prayer for the Evening.
   Practice of Piety 29 - Another shorter Evening Prayer.
   Practice of Piety 30 - Meditations for Household Piety.
   Practice of Piety 31 - Morning Prayer for a Family.
   Practice of Piety 32 - The Practice of Piety at Meals, and the Manner of Eating.
   Practice of Piety 33 - Grace before Meat.
   Practice of Piety 34 - The Practice of Piety at Evening.
   Practice of Piety 35 - Evening Prayer for a Family.
   Practice of Piety 36 - Meditations of the True Manner of Practising Piety on the Sabbath-Day.
   Practice of Piety 37 - Ten Reasons demonstrating the Commandment of the Sabbath to be moral.
   Practice of Piety 38 - The True Manner of Keeping Holy the Lord's Day.
   Practice of Piety 39 - A Morning Prayer for the Sabbath-day.
   Practice of Piety 40 - Duties in the Holy Assembly.
   Practice of Piety 41 - A private Evening Prayer for the Lord's day.
   Practice of Piety 42 - Of the Practice of Piety in Fasting.
   Practice of Piety 43 - Of the Public Fast.
   Practice of Piety 44 - Of the Practice of Piety in Holy Feasting.
   Practice of Piety 45 - Of Preparation.
   Practice of Piety 46 - Of the Worthiness of the Sacrament.
   Practice of Piety 47 - Of the first End of the Lord's Supper.
   Practice of Piety 48 - Of the second End of the Lord's Supper.
   Practice of Piety 49 - Of the third End of the Lord's Supper.
   Practice of Piety 50 - Of the fourth End of the Lord's Supper.
   Practice of Piety 51 - The fifth End of the Lord's Supper.
   Practice of Piety 52 - The sixth End of the Lord's Supper.
   Practice of Piety 53 - Of the seventh End of the Lord's Supper.
   Practice of Piety 54 - A Confession of Sins before the receiving of the Holy Communion.
   Practice of Piety 55 - Of the Means whereby thou mayest become a worthy Receiver.
   Practice of Piety 56 - Of the Second sort of Duties which a worthy Communicant is to perform
   Practice of Piety 57 - A sweet Soliloquy to be said between the Consecration and Sacrament.
   Practice of Piety 58 - Duties After Communion.
   Practice of Piety 59 - The Practice of Piety in Glorifying God in the Time of Sickness or Death
   Practice of Piety 60 - A Prayer when one begins to be sick.
   Practice of Piety 61 - A Prayer before taking of Medicine.
   Practice of Piety 62 - Meditations for the Sick.
   Practice of Piety 63 - Meditations for One That Is Like to Die.
   Practice of Piety 64 - A Prayer to Be Said of One That Is Like to Die.
   Practice of Piety 65 - Meditations against Despair, or doubting of God's Mercy.
   Practice of Piety 66 - An Admonition to them who come to visit the Sick.
   Practice of Piety 67 - A Prayer to be said for the Sick by them who visit him.
   Practice of Piety 68 - Consolations Against Impatience in Sickness.
   Practice of Piety 69 - Consolations Against the Fear of Death
   Practice of Piety 70 - Seven Sanctified Thoughts and Mournful Sighs of a Sick Man Ready to Die.
   Practice of Piety 71 - Of the Comfortable Assurance of God's Forgiveness of Sins.
   Practice of Piety 72 - Meditations of Martyrdom.
   Practice of Piety 73 - A Divine Colloquy Between the Soul and Her Savior
   Practice of Piety 74 - The Soul's Soliloquy, ravished in contemplation of the Passion of our Lord.


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