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Charles Buck Theological Dictionary
An office in the church of england appointed to be read on Ash Wednesday. It is substituted in the room of that godly discipline in the primitive church, by which ( as the introduction to the office expresses it ) "such persons as stood convicted of notorious sins were put to open penance, and punished in this world, that their souls might be saved in the day of the Lord; and that others, admonished by their example, might be the more afraid to offend." This discipline, in after ages, degenerated in the church of Rome into a formal confession of sins upon Ash Wednesday, and the empty ceremony of sprinkling ashes upon the head of the people. Our reformers wisely rejected this ceremony as mere shadow and show; and substituted this office in its room, which is A denunciation of God's anger and judgment against sinners; that the people, being apprised of God's wrath and indignation against their sins, might not, through want of discipline to the church, be encouraged to pursue them.
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Buck, Charles. Entry for 'Commination'. Charles Buck Theological Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/cbd/c/commination.html. 1802.