Matthew Henry on the New Year

On the first day of January 1713, Matthew Henry wrote the following words that is applicable as we recently entered 2017:

Firmly believing that my times are in God’s hand, I here submit myself and all my affairs for the ensuing year to the wise and gracious disposal of the divine providence.  Whether God appoint for me health or sickness, peace or trouble, comforts or crosses, life or death, his holy will be done.

All my time, strength, and service, I devote to the honor of the Lord Jesus; my studies and all my ministerial labors, and even my common actions.  It is my earnest expectation, hope, and desire, my constant aim and endeavor, that Jesus Christ may be magnified in my body.

In everything wherein I have to do with God, my entire dependence is upon Jesus Christ for strength and righteousness.  And whatever I do in word or deed, I desire to do all in his name, to make him my Alpha and Omega.  I have all by him, and I would use all for him.

If this should prove a year of affliction, a sorrowful year upon my account, I will fetch all my supports and comforts from the Lord Jesus and stay myself upon him, his everlasting consolations, and the good hope I have in him through grace.

And if it should be my dying year, my times are in the hand of the Lord Jesus.  And with a humble reliance upon his mediation, I would venture into another world looking for the blessed hope.  Dying as well as living, Jesus Christ will, I trust, be gain and advantage to me.

Oh, that the grace of God may be sufficient for me, to keep in me always a humble sense of my own unworthiness, weakness, folly, and infirmity, together with a humble dependence upon the Lord Jesus Christ for both righteousness and strength.

Matthew Henry’s writing excerpted from J. B. Williams’ Memoirs of the Life, Character, and Writings of the Rev. Matthew Henry.

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