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The Congregation shall now join in singing a Doxology, after which the whole service shall be concluded with this Benediction:
The God of peace, who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus Christ, the great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, inake you perfect in every good work to do His will, working in you that which is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ: to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
EXCOMMUNICATION AND RESTORATION,
[If any meinber give offence to the Church by open sin, he shall first be admonished by the Minister, or an Elder privately; and afterwa if he does not amend, in the presence of one or more witnesses. The admonition may be repeated, according to the nature of the case. If this discipline fail of its end, the offender is to be suspended, or separated from the use of the sacraments, and the prayers of the Congregation requested on his behalf. Should he still persist in his errors and sins, the proper steps shall be taken for his excommunication.
If, however, the offence be one of more than ordinary heinousness, the offender may be excommunicated, after due examination of the case, without previous admonition and suspension.]
The time having been announced beforehand, and the people exhorted to intercede with God, if by any means the offender may be brought to true repentance, the solemn act of Excommunication shall take place, in presence of the assembled congregation, as follows. The Minister, standing at the altar in company with the Elders, shall say:
DEARLY BELOVED IN THE LORD.: We have on sev. zral occasions made known to you, that N. N., a meniber of this church, has been leading an immoral and ungodly life [or, has been holding and teaching false doctrine-or, has been holding and teaching false doctrine and leading an immoral and ungodly life], and has thus by his sin given great offence to the Church of Christ, to the end that by your prayers to God on his behalf, he might be brought to repentance, and so be freed from the bonds of the Devil. According to
· the command of our Lord, we have kindly told him his fault, both alone and in the presence of one or two witnesses; we have warned him of the end of his heinous offences against God and the Church, and admonished him to repent. But it is with deep sorrow of heart we announce to you, that thus far we have received no evidence of true repentance and refor. mation of life. On the contrary, he has hardened his heart, and daily increases his guilt by continuing in stubborness and disobedience.
Wherefore, in order that this corrupt member may not endanger the whole body, and that the name of God be not blasphemed among us through him, we are now in duty bound, by the command of our Lord, to proceed to the use of the last remedy, and cut him off from the communion of the Church.
We, therefore, the Minister and Elders of this church, assembled in the name and by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, do hereby announce to you all that N. N., because he will not forsake his sin, is excommunicated from the Church of God; he is separated and cut off from the communion of saints, and from the use of the Sacraments, so long as he continues impenitent.
Moreover, we adınonish you, dearly beloved, that you hold no fellowship with this person, so that he may be led to a deep sense of his fall and separation from the Church of Christ. We beseech you, however, not to treat him as an enemy; but admonish him and pray for him, that he may be brought to repentance, and restored to the communion of the Church. Remember also that ye yourselves are be
set by temptation; and let the fall of this man be an example unto you, and a warning of your danger.
Ye have seen how he began to depart from the ways of truth and righteousness, and by degrees fell away more and more into error and sin, until Satan led him captive at his will. Observe, therefore, how cunning the great adversary of souls is, in leading men to destruction. The Devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour. Wherefore, let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall. Be sober; watch and pray, lest ye enter into temptation. Let every one be truly sorrowful for his sins, that God may not humble us again by the fall of any other member of this church. Beloved brethren, let your fellowship be with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ; and be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord.
Let us pray:
O RIGHTEOUS God, most merciful Father, we bewail our sins before Thy most high Majesty, and confess that we have deserved the sorrow and pain which we have felt in the separation of a member from Thy Church. For Christ's sake, be Thou gracious untu us; forgive our iniquities, over which we mourn ; and work in our hearts a godly sorrow for sin, that we may fear the judgments which Thou dost send upon the stiff-necked and rebellious. And as Thou hast nc pleasure in the death of the sinner, but wilt have all men to be converted and live; and as the door of Thy Church is always open to those who return to Thee witb true penitence; we pray, 0 most merciful Father,
for grace to walk before Thee in all holiness, and with humility and love to admonish him, upon whom this judgment has now come, that through Thy good Spirit, he may be brought to repentance, and restored to Thy favor. May we soon have cause to rejoice over him for whom we now have sorrow of heart, that Thy name may be praised, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.