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Appeal For Help

The eight versicles which follow next are addressed to Christ, and in
most editions of the Prayer Book are separated by a small space from
the Verse and Respond,

Priest. O Lord, let thy mercy, &c.
Answer. As we do put, &c.

These eight versicles were, even in 1544, distinguished from those two,
although they were then all marked to be said responsorially. In 1549
the direction for responsorial use was omitted for the eight verses,
and retained for the couplet which anticipates the next collect. We
may infer from this that it is intended that the eight verses should be
said, or sung, antiphonally. In the Sarum Use (3rd Litany for S.
Mark's Day), they were all to be said, first by the Minister, and
repeated by the People.

The eight versicles form a section by themselves, and have a different
setting from the sections which {172} precede and follow them. It was,
no doubt, intended to make this 3rd Section a very solemn appeal to
Christ, for help in all those difficulties and anxieties which have
been recited in Section i.; and to make this appeal more earnest,
because of the evil plight which is acknowledged in Section ii.

The phrases are freely translated from the Latin of the Sarum Use,
suggested by a thorough knowledge of the Psalms, but not, we believe,
to be regarded as quotations therefrom. O Son of David was
substituted for Fili Dei vivi, in making the translation. There is
not sufficient ground for supposing that it was done by accident. In
the appeal for a merciful hearing, it is right to ground it first upon
His Human Nature as Son of Man, and then upon His Divine Nature as
Christ, and Lord.

Next: The Pressing Anxieties Of The Moment

Previous: Our Cry To The Father In Heaven

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