Devotion (Lat. devoveo, to give up one's self wholly to any object). "It is employed to mean either, 1, that religious habit of the mind which is otherwise called devoutness; or, and more commonly, 2, the expression of such a state of mind in particular acts and instances of a religious nature. A spirit of devotion is one of the greatest blessings, and the want of it one of the greatest misfortunes, which a Christian can experience. When it is present, it gives life to every act of worship we perform; it renders every such act interesting and comfortable to ourselves. It is experienced in our most retired moments; in our beds, in our closets, our rides, and our walks. It is felt within us when we are assembled with our children and servants in family prayer. It leads us to church, to the congregation of our fellow- Christians there assembled. In an especial manner it accompanies us in our joint offices of religion, and it returns us to our homes holier, happier, and better. But that which greatly enhances its value to every anxious Christian is that it affords to himself a proof that his heart is right towards God. When it is followed by an abstinence from sin and endeavors after virtue, by avoiding evil and doing good, the proof and the satisfaction to be drawn from it are complete. Wherever the vital and unadulterated spirit of Christian devotion prevails, its immediate objects will be to adore the perfections of God; to entertain with reverence and complacence the various intimations of his pleasure, especially those contained in holy writ; to acknowledge our absolute dependence on and infinite obligations to him; to confess and lament the disorders of our nature and the transgressions of our lives; to implore his grace and mercy through Jesus Christ; to intercede for our brethren of mankind; to pray for the propagation and establishment of truth, righteousness, and peace on earth; in fine, to long for a more' entire conformity to the will of God, and to breathe after the everlasting enjoyment of his friendship. The effects of such a spirit, habitually cherished and feelingly expressed before him, must surely be important and happy. Among these may be reckoned a profound humility in the sight of God, a high veneration for his presence and attributes, an ardent zeal for his worship and honor, a constant imitation of our Savior's divine example, a diffusive charity for men of all denominations, a generous and unwearied self-denial, a total resignation to Providence, an increasing esteem for the Gospel, with clearer and firmer hopes of that immortal life which it has brought to light" (Paley, Sermons, Ser. vi).

Bible concordance for DEVOTION.

Definition of devotion

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