Imágenes de páginas

How long will you stop your Ears against him, that itill crieth, Why persecutest thou me? It is hard for thee to kick agains the Pricks ; for a Man to contend with his Maker. How long will you despise the well known Advice of a great and learned Man, Refrain from these Men, and let them alone. If this Work be of Man, it will come to nought. But if it be of GOD, ye cannot overthrow it. And why fhould you be found even to fight againjt GOD? If a Man fight with GOD, shall he prevail? Canst thou thunder with a Voice like him? Make haite. Fall down. Humble thyself before him: Left he put forth his Hand, and thou perish!

12. How long will you fight under the Banner of the great Enemy of GOD and Man? You are now in his Service: You are taking part with the Devil against GOD. Even supposing there were no other Proof, this would undeniably appear, from the goodly Company among whom you are enlisted, and who war one and .the same Warfare. I have heard some affirm, that the most bitter Enemies to the present Work of GOD, were Pharisees. They meant, Men who had the form of Godliness, but denied the Power of it. But I cannot fay fo. The sharpest Adversaries thereof whom I have hitherto known (unless one might except a few honourable Men, whom I may be excused froin naming) were the Seum of Cornwall, the Rabble of Bilsion and Darleston; the wild Beasts of Walsal, and the Turnkeys of Newgate.

13. Might not the very Sight of these Troops, shew any reasonable Man, to what General they belong'd ? As well as the Weapons they never fail to use; the most horrid Oaths and Execrations, and lawless Violenče, carrying away as a Flood whatsoever it is which stands before it: Having no Eyes, nor Ears, no Regard to the loudest Cries of Reason, Juftice or Humanity. Can you join Heart or Hands with these any longer? With such an infamous, fcandalous Rabble-rout, roaring and raging, as if they were just broke loose, with their Captain Apollyon, from the bottomless Pit? Does it not rather concern you, and that in the highest Degree, as well as

every Friend, to his King and Country, every Lover of Peace, Justice and Mercy, immediately to join and stop any such godless Crew, as they would join to stop a Fire just beginning to spread, or an Inundation of the Sea.

14. If, on the contrary, you join with that godless Crew, and strengthen their Hands in their Wickedness, must not you, in all Reason, be accounted, (like them) a publick Enemy of Mankind? And indeed such must every one appear, in the Eye of unprejudiced Reason, who opposes, directly or indirectly, the Reformation of Mankind. By Reformation I mean, the bringing them back (not to this or that System of Opinions, or to this or that Sett of Rites and Ceremonies, how decent and significant foever : but) to the calm Love of GOD and one another, to an uniform Practice of Justice, Mercy and Truth. With what Colour can you lay any Claim to Humanity, to Benevolence, to publick Spirit, if you can önce open your Mouth, or fiir one Finger, against such a Reformation as this ?

Tis a poor Excuse to say, “ O, but the People are brought into several erroneous Opinions.It matters not a Straw, whether they are or no; (I speak of fuch Opinions as do not touch the Foundation) 'tis scarce worth while to spend ten Words about it, Whether they embrace this religious Opinion or that, is no more Concern to me, than whether they embrace this or that System of Astronomy. Are they brought to holy Tempers and holy Lives? This is mine, and should be your Enquiry : fince on this both social and personal Happiness depend; Happiness, temporal and eternal. Are they brought to the Love of GOD and the Love of their Neighbour ! Pure Religion and undefiled is this. -How long then will you darken Council, by Words with. out Knowledge? The plain Religion now propagated is Love. And can you oppose this, without being an Enemy to Mankind

15. No; nor without being an Enemy to your King and Country: Especially at such a Time as this. For however Men of no Thought may not see or regard it,


or hectoring Cowards may brave it out, it is evident to every Man of calm Reflection, that our Nation stands on the very Brink of Destruction. And why are we thus, but because the Cry of our Wickedness is gone up to Heaven?. Because we have so exceedingly, abun. dantly, beyond Measure, corrupted our Ways before the Lord. And because to all our other Abominations we have added, the open fighting against GOD; the not only rejecting, but even denying, yea, blaspheming his laft Offers of Mercy ; the hindering others who were desirous to close therewith ; the despitefully using bis Messengers, and the variously troubling and oppreffing those who did accept of his Grace, break off their Sins, and turn to him with their whole Heart.

16. I cannot but believe, it is chiefly on this Account, that GOD hath now a Controversy with our Land. And must not any considerate Man be inclined to form the same Judgment, if he reviews the State of publick Affairs, for only a few Years last past? I will not enter into Particulars. But, in general, can you possibly help observing, that whenever there has been any thing like a publick Attempt, to suppress this new Sett (for fo it was artfully represented) another and another publick Trouble arose. This has been repeated so often, that it is furprizing any Man of Sense can avoid taking notice of it. May we turn at length to him that smiteth us, hearing the Rod and him that appointeth it! May we humble ourselves under the mighty Hand of GOD, before the great Deep swallow us up!

17. Just now, viz. on the 4th of this instant December, the Reverend Mr. Henry Wickham, one of his Majesty's Justices of Peace for the West-Riding of Yorkshire, writes an Order

To the Constable of Kighley, commanding him." to convey the Body of Jonathan Reeves, i whose real Crimé is, the calling Sinners to Repentance) to his Majesty's Goal and Castle of York: Suspected (faith the Precept) of being a Spy among us, and a dangerous Man to the Person and Government of his Majesty King George."


[ocr errors]

GOD avert the Omen! I fear this is no Presage either of the Repentance or Deliverance of our poor Nation ! 18. If we will not turn and


if we will harden our Hearts, and acknowledge neither his Judgments nor Mercies ; what remains but the fulfilling of that dreadful Word, which GOD spake by the Prophet Ezekiel : Son of Man, when the Land finneth against me, by trefpalling grievously ; then will I stretch forth my Hand upon it, and break the Staff of the Bread thereof. Though these three Men, Noah, Daniel and Job, were in it, they mould deliver but their own Souls. Or if I bring a Sword upon that Land, and say, Sword, go thro' the Land :Or if I send a Pestilence into that Land, and pour out

my Fury upon it in Blood :-Though Noah, Daniel and Job were in it, as I live, faith the Lord GOD, they shall deliver neither Son nor Daughter; they shall but deliver their own Souls by their Righteousness, Chap. xiv. ver. 13, 14, 17, 19, 20.

ret bebold, therein shall be left a Remnant, that hall be brought forth, both Sons and Daughters. And ye shall be comforted concerning the Evil that I have brought upon Jerusalem- And ye sall know that I have not done with. out Cause, all that I have done in it, saith the Lord GOD. Ver. 22, 23

[merged small][ocr errors]
« AnteriorContinuar »