Truth & Innocency TRIUMPHING OVER Falshood & Envy, OR, Jasper Batts's Vindication against William Roger's Un-christian and False Insinua­tions, in his Book Mis-called, The Christian Quaker, &c.

I Could the better have sate down in silence under the Unchristian, and Slanderous Insinuations in that Book cast out against me, especially when I consider so many of the Lords antient and faithful Servants, by this Adversary, are made my Companions herein: And also the Darkness, Envy and Confusion, in the said Book manifested; having also the evidence of the Lords spirit for my own Innocency.

[Page 2]But some necessity is upon me to Write, and give forth a few Lines in Answer thereunto, and confutation thereof; and so much the rather, because its not so much My Repu­tation, as Truth it self, that this Adversary strikes at; and therefore also willing to be a companion with my Brethren, in a Testimony against this wicked undertaking.

And this is my Testimony in general; That it is in its self a Work of Darkness, and from the Accuser of the Brethren, which must be cast down for ever: And such is the Black­ness and Foulness thereof, That as yet, (though doubtless several were concerned in their purses, to assist the bring­ing forth thereof) I have not heard of one particular per­son that owns the same: And am not without hope, that several of those so concerned, may in time see their folly, and Repent thereof, as many others have done, who were beguiled by the same spirit.

And now, as to my own particular, wherein Truth is concerned with me; for this is that which is chiefly in my eye, to answer to in this Book part 2. pages 82, 89. he thus expresses himselfe Doubtless should any man accuse Jasper Batt (one of those that judged John Story and John Wil­kinson without hearing them speak for themselves) That he went about Preaching, thereby occasioning somtimes Twenty Pound Fines, somtimes Forty Pound Fines, to be imposed on the Hearers, and incourage them to be valiant for Truth, and to offer up all (whilst his Estate was well secured out of the Persecutors reach, or at least nothing to be found of his own to pay such his Fines) he would think John Story very ill imployed, to have a hand in giving forth a publick Testi­mony against him, to be read in all the monethly and quar­terly Meetings in England, before he had either spoken or written to him to know what he could say for himself, that he might have opportunity to hush it up by writing a Paper of Condemnation, if so be he were guilty. [He farther saith] We cannot believe that Jasper Batt hath not done as bad as [Page 3] this in signing with the Sixty Six at E. Hooks's Chamber; and if the case stated in his Name be not groundless, 'tis then notorously wicked.

Thus plainly insinuating, as if I had designed First, to secure my own Estate, and then Exhort others to give up All for Truth, and occasioned such to be fined as abovesaid. To which I Answer, this Insinuation is Un-Christian, being against the Rule that Christ gives, in case a Brother Of­fends which is; Tell him his Fault between thee and him, &c. Now this I affirm, that W. R. nor any other on his behalf, never did in the least question me, or express to me any dissatisfaction concerning me, touching what he thus insinuates; which according to Christs Rule he ought to have done: And therefore his thus proceeding is Un-christian.

And this I farther testify in the Lords Presence, (who knows that I lye not) that I never disposed of, or se­cured any part of my Estate, to avoyd the loss there­of, for Truths Testimony; but have managed the same according to the Vnderstanding the Lord hath given me for its service. For when I was first convinc'd of Truth, I soon received it in the love thereof, and gave up my self and all I had to be serviceable therein; and being cal­led by the Lord to spend near my whole time in its Ser­vice, the Lord in time so disposed of my Condition, that I was necessitated, either to put off the management of the Estate which the Lord had given me, or give up my Testimony, as then required of me; that part of my Family being removed, that were any way capable to ma­nage the same in my absence, and intently waiting on the Lord for his Council, and advise with faithful Friends: I was fully satisfied (and so am to this Day) that my place was to keep my publick Testimony, and let my Estate; which I did accordingly, disposing of part thereof to my Chil­dren, as becomes a Father to provide for his Family, [Page 4] and this was done (the Lord knows) that I might be the more at liberty in the Lords Service; and as Paul advi­sed Timothy, 2 Tim 2.4. He that goes a warfare, intang­les not himself with the things of this Life, that he may please him who hath Chosen him to be his Souldier. And far­ther, that this ordering of my Affairs was not to avoyd Sufferings on the Act against Conventicles, is the more Evident, because it was done a considerable time before that Act was made.

And this also I farther testify, that it hath been my care and diligence, since the Lord called me into his ser­vice, as on the one Hand, not to run when he sent me not; so also, not to neglect the Duty he required of me: And this is my great Comfort to this day, whatever this Ad­versary, or any other judges of me, I have walk't in the Simplicity of my Heart before the Lord, and have, and do enjoy the Testimony of his Love, and assistance of his Presence, which is a large reward unto me; Glory to his Name for ever. And so this his Insinuation is very False and Envious.

W. R. speaks of giving out a Paper of Condemnation, for occasioning others to be fined for my Preaching, and my Estate secured, and not to be found, as he insinuates, &c. I Answer, what would he have me Condemn? Is it the securing my Estate from suffering? (I never did it) I am not guil­ty herein, therefore no Condemnation belongs to me for that: Or would he have me Condemn my Appearance publickly, with a Testimony for God, when the Lord requires, and moves? And draw into Holes, Corners, and under Hedges, as some of our Opposers have done. his plainly appears to be of that Spirit that would lay waste all our Meetings, and Extinguish the Doctrine and Life of Christanity, that would justify the fearful and wicked, and condemn the Righteous, which is an Abomination to the Lord: what Darkness and Confusion doth this Spirit run into!

[Page 5]And whereas W. R. insinuates, my Fine to be laid upon others. If I am Fined, or any other, for speaking in the Name of the Lord, and others suffer on that Account, its well for me to answer the Lords requirings in speak­ing, and for others also to frequent our Meetings; and so that Suffering being for well doing, shall not be with­out a Reward from the Lord: For happy are ye when ye suffer for Righteousness sake; and that were evil to diso­bey the Lords Requirings, either in frequenting, or speak­ing in Meetings, and is for Condemnation by the Truth, what ever W. R's judgment is of it.

That J. Story and J. W. were judged without a Hearing, is utterly false; they having been heard with Witnesses face to face, at a Meeting where were present several of the Sixty Six mentioned: of which Meeting, and Proceed­ings, W. R. hath given a large Testimony of the Lords Peace amongst them, and their great travel of Love and Life for J. S. and J. W. an Account whereof may be seen in Bristol-Friends Answer to W. R's Book: at which Meet­ing, after hearing of all Parties, they were judged to have entertained a wrong Spirit; and for several other Offen­ces against the Church of Christ, as by a Narrative there­of may appear. And from a Meeting in London, 1676. they were by many antient and faithful Brethren, advi­sed, and warned in the Lords Name (as he then re­quired) not to offer their Gift, nor meddle in the publick Affairs of the Church, until satisfaction was given to the Church so offended: which Advice and Warning was whol­ly rejected by them. And then at the Meeting at London, 1677. in Unity with the former Judgment given after Hearing of Witnesses face to face, and their rejecting the Advice and Warning (aforesaid) given them the year before, a Testimony was given against them by more than Sixty Six: so as to the things for which they were judged, and a Testimony given against them, they were [Page 6] fully heard before judgment; and so the Charge is False.

And now all this truly weighed, the Case stated in my Name is groundless, and so Not notoriously wicked in Me: But then, whether it be not Notorious Wickedness in W. R. thus to Insinuate, and publish in Print against me while Innocent, let Gods Witness in all judge: for I never se­cured my Estate from suffering for Truths Testimony, nor out of the Persecutors Reach: for I have, and still had an Estate Real and Personal, held in my own Name, and not made in trust to any other. And if it be wick­edness so to secure an Estate in Trust, when no Consi­deration, but to save from Suffering for Truths Testimo­ny, W. R. then ought to look nearer Home before he thus range abroad; but some will be medling while they count themselves Wise. And so the Wickedness, Fals­hood, Envy, and Confusion, rests on W. R's. own Head, for which in due time, the Lord will Reckon with him.

And whereas W. R. speaks of me and my three Com­panions, Part 2. page 91. that speak of some in a Paper of ours, that despise Government, and speak evil of Dignities, and he Accounts not us to be such.

To which I Answer, that many of the Lords little Ones, and faithful Servants, have been despised, and spoken evil of by several that are joyned to that Spirit in which this our Adversary appears to be; but as far as I have heard or understood, he have out-stript them all, as this his work of Darkness doth manifest. Now Christ Jesus saith of his Disciples, and little Ones, He that despiseth you, despiseth me; and he that despiseth me, despiseth him that sent me. And this is a Dignity rightly claimed by the Lords faithful Servants to be his Disciples, and little Ones: then if they that Reproach and Despise them, despiseth God and Christ, such despiseth Dignities, and speaks Evil of them.

Many other Contemptible, Scornfull, Deriding, and Re­proachful [Page 7] Expressions against me, and many others of the Lords servants, he hath uttered in his said Book: All which I Trample under foot, knowing my own innocency, and leave him to the Judgement of God for the same: but cannot yet well let pass without some notice taken, how much he pretends a Conscentious concern for truth, to print this his Book: And I well remember how Rabsha­keth that blasphemous General, could pretend as high for his War against the Lords people; who saith, And am I now come up without the Lord against this Land; the Lord said unto me, Go up against this Land and destroy it, Isa. 36.10. And this also I cannot well omit without notice, what he saith, Part 2. Pag. 92. viz. A hoping, that for the future, Jasper Batt will learn more modesty, than to account himself a Governour, &c. And I may say it would be well, if W. R. would learn so much modesty as to forbear to in­sinuate such falsehood; for when, or where, did I ever ac­count my self a Governour: But as the Lord hath given me a Testimony, against deceipt, and wickedness, and for his everlasting truth, I hope he will preserve me faith­ful therein to the end. Herein I may be scorned, and reproach't for the same by W. R. or any other of Truths Adversaries: And in the sence of the Lords power and presence with me, shall rejoyce; and Triumph over it all; well knowing that the Truth in it's simplicity must Reign over all at last.

And this is that which is before me at present, to write in vindication of Truth, and my own Reputati­on; well knowing other of the Lords servants are con­cerned more largely to answer, and testifie against W. R's work of darkness and confusion in that Book manifested; being well satisfied, that I am counted worthy to be a companion with them; And so commit my self and cause to the Lord, and his witness in all to judge: In whose Peace and Love I rest, A servant of Jesus Christ.

J. B.

Some of William Rogers his scornful bit­ter Words against Iasper Batt, and his Three Companions, &c. With some Ob­servations upon them.

William Rogers in his Book (falsly) Entituled the Chri­stian Quaker, &c. part 2. p. 92. hath these Words. All these (viz) J. Batt and his Three Companions, and the rest of the Sixty Six Subscribers, are by their Paper Ma­nifest, to have Run in the very way of Cain by Per­secuting the Brethren, and have appeared as Raging Waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame by their hard Speeches, which are the very Marks and Fruits of those who despise Government according to the Scriptures, which J. Batt and his Brethren hath directed us to peruse.

Observe, William Rogers Complains much against Judg­ing; but who amongst us equalls him therein? Let his Words above Cited, as also what follows, with abun­dance more of like Nature in his great Confused Book, speak for him, or against him, in the Understandings and Consciences of all Judicious and impartial Readers.

Can he prove that J. Batt, or his Three Companions (and the rest he here mentions) have ever Charged J. S. and J. W. and the Wiltshire Friends, or the Bristol Friends, who write and speak severely against them, to have run in the very way of Cain.

How doth this his bitter false Judgment agree with the Scriptures Cited by him against judging part 2, and p. 90. Mat. 7.1. Rom. 14.10. Let the Reader Examine, and seriously Consider the same. He hath rendred us in the very way of Cain (Observe the Emphasis). The very way of Cain is not only Envy, but also Actual Mur­der. [Page 9] The living God knows, that this is a very uncharita­ble, false, and wicked Judgement, for which the Lord will Rebuke him. Gods faithful witness in our own Souls, justifies us from his false and malicious Charge.

First, What was written concerning J. S. and J. W. (of which W. R. complaineth) was not written in any degree of Envy against the said persons.

Secondly, God doth know, that we never endeavoured to murder the said J. S. and J. W. nor any other person con­cerned in this Controversy against us. But Cain did not only endeavour to murder, but did actually murder his innocent Brother. We being wholly clear, not only of the Act, but the very intention of murder, are therefore Not in the very way of Cain. For we could be very glad to see J. S. and J. W. and the rest concerned with them, con­demn that which is Evil, and return into Unity with Friends, who are in the Love of God towards them, and in peaceable Unity one with another in his Spirit.

W. R. in his Book scoffingly writes against Friends con­cerning Excommunication. See part 2. p. 84. But hath not he, to the utmost of his power, endeavoured to excom­municate, not only J.B. and his Three Companions, but all the Sixty Six mentioned before, without giving them Gospel-order; or at least many of them he hath not dealt with, ac­cording as Christ commands (Amongst which the faithful Ministers struck at by W. R. are sound in Doctrine, as well as in Life and Conversation) and his Apostles direct. Therefore his uncharitable dealing towards us, Christ and his Apostles testimony witnesseth against.

If W. R. could make the Church of Christ believe, that We are in the very way of Cain: then, no doubt, they would declare against us as persons with whom they could have no Unity, in their Christian-Faith and Reli­gion, and so he would get us denyed by the Church of God, the Pillar and ground of Truth. But they have a [Page 10] true Sense and Knowledge of us, to be Men fearing God, and lovers and practisers of Christian Vertue, in Life and Con­versation, led thereinto, and preserved therein by the pure Spirit of our Lord Jesus Christ, who is Captain of our Salvation, and Bishop of our Souls, and true Head of the living Body, his Church, who Reigns in, and over eve­ry Member, who leads us into Love one to another, and to live in Peace and Unity one with another, and pre­serves therein; and teaches to love Enemies; to do good to them that despightfully Use and Persecute. These that are thus taught are far from the very way of Cain, which is Envy and Murther, These envy no man: But hate Pride, Arrogancy, and every evil way; such Christ doth own.

W. R's. Envy and bitter Words cannot get them Ex­communicated out of Christ's Church, though they may be denyed by him, and such as he is. But his words or denyal is of no Value with us; and many others that fear God.

Again, W. R. saith in page 89. part 2. We now are sensible, that the said, J. Batt and his Three Companions (having as­sumed the place of Judges) will not think our Arguments de­ducible from the Light within sufficient, to Evidence their Ignorance and Weakness, no more than if they were four blind Priests, who neglecting the Heavenly Gift in themselves, may seek a justification of their Priestly Jurisdiction from the Scriptures without.

Observ. His comparing us with four blind Priests, as aforesaid, is both Scornful, Malicious, and greatly Un­just. Herein he renders us, 1st. As blind as the blind Priests. 2dly. As much neglecting the Heavenly Gift in our selves, as they. 3dly. As great Slighters and Contemners of the Light of Christ within, as they. Oh Unrighteous Judgment, I do deny W. R's aforesaid pretended Sense, 'Tis grosly False, and Slanderous. For we are of the [Page 11] Apostles Faith concerning the Light of Christ within; who saith, Whatsoever is reproved is made manifest by the Light; and that which doth make Manifest, is Light. But neither the Light of Christ within us, nor the Scrip­tures of Truth without, nor yet W. R's Observations thereupon, hath manifested to us, that to be our Igno­rance and VVeakness, which he in his Uncharitable Lofty Mind calleth so. But suppose we were Ignorant and Weak, will no softer Words serve W. R. against us for this, than to Judge us to be in the very way of Cain, for Weakness and Ignorance? if he could prove both against us, will not prove his Charge against us true. For they who are in the very way of Cain, are more than Weak and Ig­norant; they are grosly Wicked and Prophane, in Envy, Murder, &c. O William! Thou want'st Charity, 1 Cor. 13. Col. 3.14 2 Tim. 2.22. Tit. 2.2. in this Judgment, which is the bond of perfectness, as the Apostle said. He also said, If I want Charity, I am nothing; but he had it, and therein was accepted of God: But thou with­out it wilt be rejected.

W. R. It appears in part 2. p. 91. that thou art offended at J. Batt, and his Three Companions, for citing the Epistles of Peter and Jude, in their Reply to the Bristol-Paper, and desiring them to be read, and rightly apply'd, &c. It appears as if thy offence were, because they did not inform those to whom they wrote, how to apply the aforesaid Scriptures. And it appears, because the said Epistles are cited to be read, and rightly applyed; Thou takest occasion to com­pare I. B. and his Three Companions, to Four Blind Priests, who neglecting the Heavenly gift in themselves, may seek a Iustification of their Priestly Iurisdiction from the Scriptures without. The unjustness of this com­parison is shewed before. But William, thou hast brought Scriptures in defence of what thou writest in thy Book against Friends, and thou hast not informed them how to apply them Right. Of which, I conclude, thou hast heard [Page 12] something already, and maist hear more hereafter. Some other of thy Companions, who write against Friends, have brought Scriptures to prove what they Write; but have not rightly applyed them, nor informed Friends so to do. Art thou willing to be Judged for not Teaching them, as aforesaid, as thou hast Judged U [...]? Namely, to be As Blind as Priests, &c. Why shouldest thou be Offended at our citing those wholesome Epistles? dost thou herein shew a right e­steem for those Holy Scriptures? cannot we cite Scriptures, and leave People rightly to apply them, as Guided by that Holy Spirit, that Guided the Holy Men in giving them forth; But for so doing, be by thee Judged To neglect the Heavenly Gift in our selves, and to be as Blind as Four Blind Priests? It seems to appear in thy Book, that thou hast an Opinion, That the Tree of Knowledge is good for Food. But it were better for thee to wait upon God in the Light of his Son, and therein to be Obedient to Him, that so thou mayst Eat of the Fruit of the Tree of Life; which Food would fill thee with Charity, without which thou canst not be Accepted of God, who is Love (or Charity) as the Holy Apostle Testified.

The word Dignity expressed in Peter and Judes Epistles, cited by J. Batt, and his Thrre Companions, W. R. doth Paraphrase upon, in a scornful manner, a­gainst the said Friends, and others; as may be seen in part 2. pag. 92.

Observe, The word Dignity signifies Honour, as the Dictionaries render it. How often doth W. R. in his Book, call J. S. and J. W. Honourable? And in his Pre­face to the Reader, p. 3. he calls J. S. and J. W. Two antient and honourable Labourers in the Gospel of Christ, whose Con­versations and Doctrines, I have not known or understood to be exceeded in Godliness, by any Mortal Man whatsoever, saith he.But W. R. thus high ap­plauding J. S. and J. W. as Not exceeded by any Mortal Man whatsoever, hath not an­swered the Witness of God in our Consciences; and his Narrative, and their Paper of Condemnation prove the con­trary: And hath not W. R. herein applauded J. S. and J. W. somewhat like, as the Samaritans did Sim. Magus? Doth he not herein highly Honour or Dignify them? Why may not God Honour or Dignify his Servants; who seek not the Honour that comes from the Earthly Mind; but that which comes, from God only? God hath said by the Mouth of the Prophet, *Much more might be said to this; and that from the Scriptures of Truth, as well as inward Experience. But this in short at present. Them that Honour Me, I will Honour: And be­fore True Honour, goeth Humility. *Much more might be said to this; and that from the Scriptures of Truth, as well as inward Experience. But this in short at present.

The word Government is also Paraphrased on by W. R. in the two aforesaid pages in a bitter and scornful man­ner, against J. Batt, and many of the Lord's Servants. To which I say, on the behalf of Christ and his Church, That we own no other Government in his Church, but that which is upon his Shoulders; as God hath promised. He is one in the Male, and in the Female; as the Holy Apostle said; who is Prince of Peace, and keeps his Subjects in Peace, and Unity one with another.

J. B.

London, Printed for John Bringhurst, Printer and Statio­ner, at the Sign of the Book in Grace-Church-Street. 1681.

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