• The KING and his PARLIAMENT.
  • The PEOPLE of these Nations.

Thorough His Servant GEORGE BISHOPE.

But the end of all things is at hand, be ye therefore sober, and watch unto Prayer, 1 Pet. 4. 7.

LONDON, Printed for Robert Wilson, and are to be sold at the Black-spread Eagle and Wind-Mill in Martins Le Grand, 1661.

To the KING, and both Houses of PARLIAMENT.


YOU have time to Work, and it is not long: The Lord hath been very Gracious unto you, and Done for you a­bove What ye were able to Ask or Think, as it is at this Day; He hath Replenished Your Sorrows and Troubles with Joy and Peace, and made Your Dominion larger than Ye could Wish: What is there that Your hearts can reasonably ask, that You have not? Was ever Such a Day seen by a People, as by You? Was ever such a Wonder wrought to make You so? Did the Earth ever know the like? Or can the Records of Ages parallel it? Was it not as much beyond Your thoughts (and that not long since) as You are above Your Enemies? Could Ye have thought that Ye should be Rulers over these Nations, and so as at this Day, some few years since? Was it not Done in a Moment, as it were, without Blood or Price of War, which brought, and long kept Ye under? How calm? How still? How in subjection are these Nations at this Day? Have Ye an Enemy? Can Ye think of one that can hurt You? The Hearts, the Persons, the Purses of the Ge­neralitie of the Nations are Under You. A large Dominion; a goodly Heritage; England, the fairest and best of Nations; England the most secure and safe of Nations: England the fattest and most fertile of the Nations: Men prompt, and ready, and bold, and active: A Seed Plot of Understanding; An Academy of Learning; A Nation of Men; A Warlike Nation; A People whom the Lord hath owned above any people. A People whom the Lord hath appeared to save, more than any people; A people whom He hath sought to gather, whom He hath gathered (many of them) into his Rest, and who know the Lord.

This is your state, this your Condition; and thus hath the Lord done for you, that ye may observe his Statutes, and keep his Judg­ments, [Page 2] that ye may live, and it may be well with you and your po­sterity after you, and that ye may know his Rest, which is Eternal, as he hath given you here a Rest temporal.

And now, what doth the Lord require of you? but that you Do Justly, and love Mercy, and walk humbly with God; that you break every yoke, and unbind every burden, and let the Oppressed go free: That you love Justice and Judgement; that you rule for God, who hath brought you into Rule, and hitherto preserved you: That you take not upon you to Rule over his Kingdom, or to prescribe to his Dominion; Whose Kingdom is an everlasting Kingdom, and his Dominion that which shall never have end, that of him in the Conscience: That ye make not his innocent people to suffer, who suffered with you, and by, and under your Enemies; who have good will towards you and all men; though they war with the Spirit of iniquity which holds Mens souls in Captivity, with Weapons that are not Carnal, but Spiritual; who desire your everlasting welfare; and that it may be well with you and yours for ever; who are inno­cent as to you, neither hath there been any ill-will found in them against you, in thought or in deed; who are peaceable in the Land, and seated in it by Natural Right; who consist of Many Thou­sands of Families, Men, Women, Children and Servants, Natural English; who wrong no man; who resist not Evil; who are good Ex­amples of Holiness, of Virtue, of Temperance, and Testimonies a­gainst Evil; which causeth the Wrath of God to come upon Nations, and to afflict and destroy them, Whose Desire is that none may pe­rish, but that all might come to the knowledge of the truth: The Lord God hath called them; the Lord God is with them; the Lord God hath kept, and will keep them, as they abide with him: The Lord God hath made them to stand, and will make them: He hath made them a People, and they shall be so: He hath observed all that hath been done for, and against them; and he hath recompenced, and will recompence it; they fear before him; they dare not displease him; they may not set up Man above him; they must obey him be­fore man; they obey man in him: He cannot see them wronged, and not require it; they are his Jewels, (his People are) and as the Apple of his eye: He that toucheth you, toucheth the Apple of mine eye, saith the Lord; they tremble before him, and of him stand in awe, who is Lord of Heaven and Earth; they fear not man whose breath is in his Nostrils, because they may not: Their [Page 3] fear towards him is not taught by the precepts of men, because it ought not; Christ Jesus saith so, Matt: 15. 7, 8, 9. Ye Hypocrites, saith he to the Pharisees) well did Esaias prophesie of you, saying, This people draw nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoreth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me; But in vain do they worship me, teaching for Doctrine the [Traditions] of men. And the Lord by his Prophet, Isa. 29 13, 14. Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honor me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear towards me is taught by the [Precepts] of men. Therefore behold, I will proceed to do a marvellous Work amongst this people, and a wonder; for the Wis­dom of their wise men shall perish, and the Understanding of their Pru­dent shall be hid. They worship God in spirit and in truth, neither in this Mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, because the Father seeketh such to worship him; whom the Son saith will be so worshipped. God. is a Spirit (saith he) and they that worship him, must worship him in spirit and in truth. Woman believe me, the hour cometh when ye shall neither in this Mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father: Ye worship ye know not what; we know what we Worship; for salvation is of the Jews: But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true wor­shippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth, for the Father seeketh such to worship him, John 4. 21, 22, 23, 24. They cannot bow to any thing but what's of the Lord in his Worship, because the Lord hath sworn, As I live saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God, Rom. 14. 11. They cannot owe their Consciences to any but to God, because He is Lord of Conscience: They cannot but meet together to Worship God, and to wait upon him; because they that feared the Lord, spake often one to another, and the Lord hearkned and heard it, and a Book of Remembrance was writ­ten before him for them that feared the Lord, and thought on his Name; and they shall be mine, saith the Lord of Hosts, in that day when I make up my Jewels, and I will spare them as a man spareth his own son that serveth him, Mal. 3. 15, 16. And not forsaking the assembling of our selves together, as the manner of some is, but exhorting one ano­ther, and so much the more as you see the day approaching, Heb 10. 25. They cannot swear, because Christ saith, Swear not at all, neither by Heaven, for its God's throne; neither by the Earth, for it is his foot­stool; neither by Jerusalem, for it is the City of the Great King; nei­ther shalt thou swear by thy Head, for thou canst not make one hair [Page 4] white or black: But let your communication be Yea, Yea, Nay, Nay, for whatsoever is more then these, cometh of evil, Matt. 5. 34, 35▪ 36, 37. And his Apostle James saith, But above all things my Brethren, swear not, neither by Heaven, neither by the Ea [...]th, neither by any other Oath: But let your yea be yea, and your nay nay, lest ye fall into con­demnation, Jam. 5. 12. And the swearing [by] any thing, was that which made it an Oath; and they used in their swearing to menti­on [by] something, which made it an Oath; and they were gone (many of them) from that of the Law, (which Christ the end of the Law for Righteousness, also repeals, in that he saith, Ye have heard it hath been said by them of Old time, Thou shalt not forswear thy self, but shalt perform unto the Lord thine Oath's; but I say unto you, Swear not at all, &c. as aforesaid) which Law required them to swear, and to swear by the Lord: Thou shalt fear the Lord thy God, and serve him, and swear By his Name, Deut. 6. 13. I say, they were gone from that of the law, which required them when they swore, to swear [by] the Lord; Thou shalt swear the Lord liveth in truth, in judgement, and in righteousness, Jer. 4. 2. and swore [by] the Lord, and [by] Malcom, Zeph. 1. 5. And, they taught my people to swear [by] Baal, Jer. 12. 16. And they that swear [by] the sin of Samaria, and say, thy God O Dan liveth; and the Manner of Beershe­ba (the Calves there by which they worshipt God) liveth, even they shall fall, and never rise up again, Amos 8. 14. And [by the Hea­ven, and [by] the Earth, and [by] Jerusalem, &c. He repeals it all: But I say unto you, swear not at all; neither [by] the Lord, nor any other thing: Swear not at all, I say unto you so, though ye have heard it hath been said by them of old time, Thou shalt not forswear thy self, but shalt perform to the [Lord] thine Oaths. This was not Cur­sorie swearing, or in ordinary Communication (as people would have it, a [...] some say so, but without proof) for it appears not that there was any such kind of swearing among the Jews, for they were not to take his Name in vain; but such Oath's as were made to God, solemn Oaths, (as I may so say) by which they bound their souls to God to perform, as it was then required; and when they swore so, they mentioned [by] something (as I have said) and this [By] made it an Oath; and that which they swore [by] was to be that which was Paramount to all, and could witness, and was able to avenge, which the Lord was onely, therefore they were to mention his Name when they swore; and it was a figure of something which [Page 5] was to come, which was not then come, Christ Jesus (whom that Nation, and the Body of all that worship and service typified, and which had their end in him, and which he when he was come, put thus an end unto; who is the Oath of God—to perform the mercy promised to our fathers, and to remember his holy Covenant, the Oath which he sware to our Father Abraham that he would grant unto us, Luke 1. 72, 73, 74—And who it is that binds the soul to God: In whom all the promises of God are Yea and Amen; Even in Christ Jesus, 2 Cor. 1, 20. who saith, But I say unto you, Swear not at all: And he that said so, is the same that said, Whosoever is angry with his Brother without a cause, shall be in danger of the Judgement, &c. And whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her, hath committed Adul­tery with her already in his heart in the same Ch. Mat. 5. They can­not maintain a Priesthood by tythes, because that Priesthood which had the tythes is done away, and ended in him to whom Abraham paid tythes, in Melchizedeck, who is a Priest for ever after the Order of Melchizedeck, Psal. 110. 4. whom it figured. They can­not maintain temples of stone, or come to Worship in them, as pla­ces consecrated by man; or because they have in them, more than other places, or for that God is more to be found in them, or wil be found in them; or that he hath so signified more than in other pla­ces; or that he will be present: Because God dwelleth not in tem­ples made with hands, neither is worshipped with mens hands. God that made the world, and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of Hea­ven and Earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands, neither is wor­shipped with mens hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing that he giveth unto all, life, and breath, and all things, Acts 17. 24, 25. And the temple at Jerusalem was a figure of him who was to come, which is ended in him who is come. And now the temple of God is those in whom the Holy Ghost dwelleth. Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy, for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are, 1 Cor. 3. 16 17. And, what agree­ment hath the temple of God with idols? For ye are the temple of the living God, as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people; Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye seperate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing, & I wil receive you, & wil be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord God Almighty, 2 Cor. [Page 6] 6. 16, 17, 18. They cannot be in the Observation of Daies and times set in the will of man; Because such things also had their Day, and End; even those which were commanded of the Lord; Ye observe Daies, and Months, & Times, & Years; I am afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labour in vain, Gal. 4. 10, 11. And, let no man therefore judge you in Meat, or in Drink, or in respect of a Holy-day; or of the New-Moon, or, of the Sabbath-Dayes, which are a shadow of things to come, but the Body is of Christ, Col. 2. 16, 17. And, He that regardeth a Day, regardeth it unto the Lord; and, he that doth not regard the Day unto the Lord, he doth not regard it. He that Eateth, Eateth to the Lord, for he giveth God thanks; and he that eateth not unto the Lord, he eateth not, and giveth God thanks. For none of Us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself. For, whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord; whe­ther we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord's. For to this end Christ both Died and rose and revived, that he might be Lord both of the Dead and Living. But why doest thou judge thy Brother? Or, why doest thou set at nought thy Brother? We shall all stand before the Judgment seat of Christ; As it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, Every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God. So then every One of Us shall give account of himself to God. Let us not the [...]efore judge one another any more, but judge this rather, that no man put a stumbling block, or occasion to fall, in his brother's way. I know, and am perswaded by the Lord Jesus, that there is nothing unclean of it self, but to him that esteemeth any thing to be unclean, to him it is un­clean. But if thy Brother be grieved with thy Meat, Now walk­est thou not Charitably. Destroy not him with thy meat for whom Christ dyed. Let not then your good be evil spoken of. For the King­dom of God is not meat, and drink, but Righteousness, and Peace, and Joy in the Holy Ghost. For he that in these things serveth Christ, is acceptable to God, and approved of men. Let Us, therefore, follow after the things that make for Peace, and things wherewith we may edifie one a [...]o [...]her; for meat destroy not t [...]e work of God; one man esteemeth one day above another; Another esteemeth every day alike. Let every man be fully perswaded in his own mind, Rom. 14. 5. to the end.

Now, these things I am moved of the Lord to lay before you; to the End that yee may take heed of Doing any thing by which the Lord may be Displeased with you; Or that may grieve his Spirit, or, make him to Repent of the good he hath done you; [Page 7] or to become your Enemy. For certainly if yee shall impose upon Conscience in things appertaining to the Worship of God; or cause his Innocent People to suffer; or, not Answer the End of the Lord in giving you this Day and Tryal; His hand will be a­gainst you, and he will reckon these things with you; and it will be sad for you in that Day; When he shall render unto you ac­cording to your Works. And therefore in love to you, and in the fear of God, and as moved of him, and as desiring your wel­fare both here and hereafter, I have written.


To the Nobility and Gentry of These Nations.


YOur Opportunities are great to do Good; the Lord hath not dealt by You as with Other men; You have Estates Great and Large; Lands and Revenues, and many your Servants; in the most sweet and flourishing Places of the Nation. You are Seated, and your World abounds: You have in a manner what yee can wish; and your Travel is little (most of you); from your Ancestors yee have received from Generation to Genera­tion with little Toyl, or Trouble, as to you; unless your Desire of Encrease, or falling below by other Miscarriages hath occa­sioned it: You are full of Ease and Pleasure; and if any thing be of more De [...]ectableness then other, you have it; Ride in and out; Rise, Walk, lie down at your pleasure; when multitudes of others rise early, and lye down late, and Eat the bread of care­fulness, and are your servants.

And this is the state of many, or most of you; and it is great and large as to the Outward, Who are like to you? Now, it con­cerns you to see how you Answer the Lord for all his kindness▪ and how yee Return to him according to the benefits received; For, the End of the Lord in all this is not that yee should do as [Page 8] yee list, and because yee have your Wills as to this World; there­fore yee should do your Wills in this world; but the Will of him that gave it you. Excess, Riot, Pride, Haughtiness, Surfeting, Drunken­ness, Gluttony, Wantonness, Cursing, Swearing, Diceing, Gaming, Chambering, Revelling, spending the Creatures on your Lusts, Living in pleasure, loving of pleasures more then God, with such like; were not the things that he minded as his End who with a li­beral hand hath ministred to you; but to be humble, sober, meek, just, temperate; lovers of good things, lovers of God; liberal, cha­ritable, given to good works, lovers of Hospitality, kind, virtuous, serving the Lord without distraction; Passing the time of your so­journing here in fear. For, the Lord will require an account of you for all the deeds done in the body, and his judgment ye can­not escape; and the more kind and liberal he hath been to you, and put it into your hands to do good, the more he will re­quire at your hands: For, to whomsoever much is given, of him much will be required.

Therefore, Friends, it concerns you (as I have said) to mind your state, and see how it is with you; That within you which witnesseth to God will shew you if you heed it, and become obedi­ent thereunto; which knows your Up-risings, and your Down­sittings; the thoughts and intents of your hearts, and tries them; which is with you wherever you go, and wherever you lie down, and whatever you do; which is Gods witness, and takes account of all your Actions; and speaks to you from God, and bids yee not to do the Abominable thing that his soul abhorrs; which judgeth yee for Evil; which shews yee Evil; which tells yee what yee should do; and which will make up the Reckoning for God; and will leave you without excuse in the Day that he shall Judge the Quick and the Dead, at his appearing and coming.

Now, Friends, this is of Concernment to You, that this be your friend; and that this answer for you in that Day, that yee have done the Will of God, and Answered the Requirings of his Spirit in you; and what it moved you from God. Well done thou good and faithful servant, Enter into thy Masters Joy, will the Lord say then to that which hath Done his Will; and that will be a good word for you in the Day of the Lord, when amazement and horror shall seiz upon all who know not God, neither yield Obedience to his God; and all faces shall gather Blackness, and [Page 9] Paleness; and the Mighty shall be afraid, and the Strong man shall weep bitterly, and the Heavens shall depart as a Scrowl, and the Elements melt with fervent heat; and the Earth, and the works thereof be burnt up; and Men at their Wits Ends, expect­ing what the End of those things will be; and an Eternal End abides it to every one, either of joy. or sorrow, for ever and ever. But if it be otherwise, and that condemn you which should be your Peace, and that plead against yee, which you should now mind to plead for you in that Day; and be a Witness to the Lord that yee have not hearkned, nor heard, nor obeied, nor receiv­ed Instruction, nor drawn near to the Lord; but you would do as yee listed, and serve your pleasures more then God, and con­sume his Creatures on your Lusts; and swear by, and blas­pheme his Name; and make no other use of your time, then to please your selves, and not the Lord; nor of your Estates, but in order thereunto; and your time be over, and the Day of your Visitation be closed up, and at an End, then it will be sad indeed; and better it had been for you that you had never been born; when with Rich Dives, you, who have had in your life­time your Pleasure, must be tormented for ever and ever.

Therefore, my Friends, whilst yee have time mind it; Let not the gracious hour of the Lord's tender Visitation pass Over you; but be yee gathred unto it: Come into his Arms now they are Open; approach unto him, now that he calls upon you. It's your need, not his, that makes him call on you: Come to him when he calls; He knows your state; He knows what it will be for you to be Undone for ever; He knows the power of his wrath, though man doth not; He knows how it will sink; how it will lay Low; how it will bring to the dust; how it will bow the Pride of Man; and lay his Haughtiness in the Dust; and how intollerable it is. He calls that yee may hear whilst yee have time; He calls that your souls may live: Why will yee die, O house of Israel? Return, and your souls shall live: He desires not your death; he hath sworn it; This is a testimonie of it, that he calls upon you; and that he calls upon you, you know; because yee find that in you which shews yee Evil, and judges yee for Evil, and tells yee what yee should do, and Answers to what I have said to you: And, this is the power of God to salvation to as many as believe in it, and obey it. It's stronger then the Powers of Dark­ness; [Page 10] It steps thorough it; It comes before it; it shews yee what the Enemy is doing; and where he is leading you; and what's the Path; and whither it tends; and shines before you for you to see the Path of Life, & to walk in it; & it will lead you into the Path of Life, as you believe in it, heed it, and obey it. And this is the loving kindness of God to you; and his free Grace, and his Mercy, his Redemption if you will receive, and accept it; For, to as many as received him, it was, that to them he gave power to be called the Sons of God, even to as many as believe in his Name; which were born not of Blood, nor of the will of man, nor of the Flesh, but of God; Who was in the World, and the World was made by him; and the World knew him not; who came unto his Own, and his Own recei­ved him not.

Live not then in Pleasures; for he that liveth in pleasure is dead whilst he liveth: But draw nigh unto God, and He will draw nigh unto you; Cleanse your hands ye sinners, and purifie your hearts yee double-minded: Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep; Let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness: Humble your selves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up. Come to that which judgeth you, and love that which shews you, and follow that which draws you; Least the hour of your Visitation pass Over you, and you be swept away by the over-flowing scourge which is near to come on the head of the wicked; So will ye feel my Love, and the Arms of the Lord which seeks to draw you with the Cords of a Man, with the bands of love, of which I am Witness; vvho so moves in me to you-wards; whose love is to you; and who am willing in any thing in the Will of God to be serviceable unto your Eternal Welfare, and that which is here, which is desired by him, who is,

Your Friend, GEO. BISHOPE.

To the Arch-Bishops (so called) and Bishops, Deans and Prebends, Chancel­lors and Chor [...]sters, and the rest of the Priesthood and its Officers under Epis­copacy in these Nations.


EVery Plant that my Heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up, saith Christ: And you being not Plants of his plant­ing, ye will be rooted up. Therefore look to your selves, and see in this your hour, whether ye be Plants which he hath set, which shall not be rooted up.

Look thorough the New Testament (so called) the Scriptures of the Apostles and Disciples of Jesus, and see whether ye have any footing there, or in the Garden of God, where they planted who were sent of him, who were able Ministers of the New-Testa­ment, not of the Letter, but of the Spirit; for, the Letter kills, but the Spirit giveth life, 2 Cor. 3 6.

See whether ever Jesus Christ planted such a thing in his Church as to be called Fathers, or Reverend Fathers, or Right Reverend Fathers? seeing that he said unto his Disciples, Call no man Father on the eart [...]; for one is your Father which is in Heaven, Matt. 23. 9. And seeing of the Lord it is said—Holy & Reverend is his Name, Psal. 111. 9. And whether this be Right, or in God, seeing it is Out of the Scriptures, and from the Church of Christ which is in God, 1 Thes 1. 1. And none of the Gifts which when he ascended up on high, and led Cap­tivity captive, he gave unto men, which were some Apostles, and some Prophets, and some Evangelists, and some Teachers, for the per­fecting of the Saints, for the work of the Ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come in the Unity of the Faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ, Eph. 4. 8, to the 14. And seeing that Christ Jesus himself calls not himself Father, but the Son, though he be the Head of the Church, Col. 1. 18? And whether [Page 12] These be not Names of Blasphemy? And whether the Woman Wch John saw (being carried away by the Angel which had the seven Vials in the Spirit into the Wilderness) was not sitting on a scarlet colour­ed Beast full of Names of Blasphemy? Rev. 17. 1, 3. And whether she was not drunken with the Blood of the Saints, and with the Blood of the Martyrs of Jesus? Ver. 6. And, whether these be not some of the Names?

Again, look and see whether Lords, Arch-Bishops, and Lord-Bi­shops, or any such thing be found written in the Lambs Book of Life, who exercise Dominion over the Lord's Herltage, and are called of men Lords? Seeing that Christ Jesus saith—The Kings of the Gentiles exercise Lordship over them, and they that exercise Au­thority over them, are called Benefactors; but ye [shall not] be so; but he that is greatest among ye, let him be as the younger; and he that is chief, as he that doth serve; For, whether is greater, he that sitteth at Meat, or he that serveth? Is not he that sitteth at Meat? but I am amongst ye as he that serveth, Luke 22. 25, 26, 27. And seeing that his Apostle saith—For, though there be that are called Gods, whether in Heaven, or in Earth, (as there be Gods many, and Lords many) but to Us there is but one God, the Father of whom are all things, and We in him; & one Lord Jesus, by whom are all things, and we by him, 1 Cor. 8. 4, 5. And seeing another of his Apostles saith,—The Elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an Elder, and a Witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the Glory which shall be re­vealed. Feed the Flock of God which is among you, taking the over­sight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; neither as being [Lords] over Gods Heritage, but being examples to the Flock, 1 Pet. 5. 23. And seeing the same Apostle also saith—And when the chief Shepherd (No Arch-Bishop, no chief Shepherd of the sheep but him) shall appear, we shall receive (who are not as [Lords] over Gods Heritage, or who Lord it not over them as aforesaid) a Crown of glory that fadeth not away, ver. 4.

Thirdly, look and see whether ever the Apostles had the disposal of Lands, otherwise then what every one that had a willing mind did sell, and lay the money down at the Apostles feet for the relief of the Disciples, that none amongst them might want, and this in time of persecution? Seeing that the Scripture saith—And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart, and of one soul, nei­ther said any of them, that ought of the things that he possessed were his [Page 13] own; but they had all things common: And that with great power gave the Apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great Grace was on them all; neither was there any among them that lacked; For as many as were possessors of Lands, sold them, and brought the price of the things that were sold, and laid them down at the Apostles feet: And distribution was made unto every man according to his need: And Joses, who by the Apostles was called Barnabas, (which is by in­terpretation the Son of Consolation) a Levite, and of the Countrey of Cyprus, having Land, sold it, and brought the Money (not the Land) and laid it at the Apostles feet, Acts 4. 32. to the end. And whether Palaces and yearlie Revenues of thousands of pounds in Land, and Houses (which they neither ploughed for, or eared, planted or sowed) as proper to their Place and Function; Or Earthly Dignities, or Su­periorities, or Powers, or Preheminencies, or State, or Grandeur, was entailed by Christ to his Apostles and Disciples whom he sent forth to Minister, to whom he said (after he was risen from the Dead, and near ascending)—And lo I am with you to the end of the World, Matt. 28. 20. seeing that himself also saith to Pilate—My Kingdom is not of this world; if my Kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight that I should not be delivered to the Jews; but now is my Kingdom not from hence, John 18. 36.—And to Peter—Put up thy sword into the sheath; the Cup that my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it? Ver. 31—Put up thy sword (Peter) into his place; for all they that take the sword, shall perish with the sword, Mat. 26. 52—And to his Disciples▪ The Foxes have holes, and the Birds of the air have Nests, but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head, Matt. 8. 20.—And, When I sent you without purse and scrip, and shooes, lacked ye any thing? And they said, Nothing, Luke 22. 35—And his Apostle saith—For though I preach the Gospel; I have nothing to glory of; for necessity is laid on me, yea wo is unto me if I preach not the Gospel: For if I do this thing (willingly) I have my reward; but if against my will, a Dispensation of the Gospel is committed to me, what is my re­ward then? Verily, that when I preach the Gospel, that I may make the Gospel of Christ [without] charge; that I [abuse] not my power in the Gospel; for though I be free from all men, yet have I made my self servant unto all that I might gain the more, 1 Cor. 9. 16, 17, 18, 19.

Fourthly, look and see whether they had any Courts or Synagogues, or places of Judicature, or sate as Judges over Mens Persons or E­states, or had their Officers to summon or bring before them [Page 14] to censure, and to punish them? And whether they had, or sought for, or used, or taught of such a Power, or any thing like it to that, or succeeding ages, that might then, or hereafter, or at any time be used by the Apostles and the Disciples of Jesus? Seeing that he saith—Man, who made me a Judge, or a Divider over you? to him that said, Master, speak to my Brother that he divide the Inheritance with me—Who was one of the company that followed him, Luke 12. 13, 14. And seeing that he said to his Disciples—Take heed to your selves, for they shall deliver ye up to Counsels, and in the Syna­gogues ye shall be beaten, and ye shall be brought before Rulers and Kings for my sake, for a testimony against them, Mark 13. 9. And that they were so delivered and beaten, and brought before, the Acts of the Apostles testifie.

Fiftly, Look and see whether the Apostles and Ministers of Jesus had fixed places, or setled stations or Houses and Land appropria­ted to them by the Laws of Nations, and such a Circuit of ground, and all within it, whether one or the other, to be at their Order, and this to be called their Diocess, or Deanary, or Parish, or Cure of Souls? Seeing that of Christ Jesus it is said, That he went about all the Cities & Villages, teaching in their Synagogues, & preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom, & healing every sickness, & every disease among the people, Mat. 9. 35. And he said to his Disciples, Freely ye have recei­ved, freely give, Heal the sick, cleanse the Lepers, raise the dead, cast out Devils: Freely ye have received, freely give—And this was to the lost sheep of the House of Israel, Matt. 10. 6, 7, 8. And seeing his Apostle said of himself and Brethren—Even to this present time we both hunger and thirst, and are naked, and are buffeted, and have No certain dwelling place; and labour, working with our hands, being re­viled, we bless; being persecuted, we suffer it; being defamed, we en­treat: We are made as the filth of the world, and are the off-scouring of all things unto this day, 1 Cor. 4. 11, 12, 13. And they wandered about in sheep-skins and goat-skins, being destitute, afflicted and tor­mented, of whom the world was not worthy. They wandered in Deserts and in Mountains, and in Dens, and in Caves of the Earth, Heb. 11. 37, 38 And how the Apostles went about from Nation to Nation, from City to City, preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom, their Epistles and Acts manifest, unto which I refer.

And Paul saith—A Bishop then must be blameless, the Husband of one Wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to Hospitality, apt [Page 15] to teach; not given to Wine; no striker, nor given to filthy Lucre; but patient; not a Brawler; not Covetous; One that ruleth well his Own house, having his Children in subjection with all gravity: For, if a man know not how to rule his Own house, how shall he take Care of the Church of God?) Not a Novice, least being lifted up with Pride, hee fall into the condemnation of the Devil. Moreover, he must have a good Report of them that are without; least he fall into Reproach, and the snare of the Devil. These things write I unto Thee (saith he to Timothy) hoping to come unto thee shortly; but if I tarry long, that thou mayst know how thou oughtest to behave thy self in the House of God, which is the Church of the living God, the Pillar & Ground of Truth, (which no Temples made with hands are, but the Church which is in God) 1 Thes. 1. 1. Lively stones built upon that spiritual house; an holy Priesthood to offer up spiritual Sacrifices acceptable to God by Je­sus Christ, 1 Pet. 2. 5.) 1 Tim. 3. 2. to the 8. 14, 15.

And the same Apostle saith to Titus—For this Cause left I thee in Creet, that thou shouldst set in order the things that are wanting, and ordain Elders in every City as I had appointed thee. If any be blame­less, the husband of one wife, having faithful Children; not accused of Riot, or unruly. For a Bishop must be blameless as the Steward of God; not self-willed, not soon angrie; not given to wine; no striker; not given to filthy lucre, but a lover of hospitality, a lover of good men; Sober, just, holy, temperate; holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught; that he may be able by sound doctrine both to Exhort, and to Con­vince the gain-sayers, Tit. 1. 5. to the 10.

And this Paul was an Apostle not of men, neither by man; but by Jesus Christ, and God the Father who raised him from the Dead: So he saith himself, Gal. 1. 1. And Timothy had the Gift by the lay­ing on of the hands of the Presbytery, 1 Tim. 4. 14. And the A­postles laid their hands on them that believed, and they received the Holy Ghost, Act. 8. 17. which Simon the Sorcerer would have bought with mony. For when Simon saw that through laying on of the Apostles hands, the Holy Ghost was given, he offered them mony, saying, Give me also this Power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy Ghost: But Peter said unto him, Thy Money pe­rish with thee, because thou hast thought the Gift of God can be purcha­sed with Money: Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter; For thy heart is not right in the sight of God. Repent therefore of this thy wick­edness, and pray God if perhaps the thoughs of thine heart may be for­given [Page 16] thee; for I perceive thou art in the gall of bitterness, and the bond of iniquity, ver. 18. to the 24 And Paul said to Timothy—Lay hands suddenly on no ma [...]; neither be partakers of other mens sins; Keep thy self pure, 1 Tim. 5. 22.

And that Ministration had an End with them, and Antichrist was then entring, and the Apostles prophesied of the Apostasie; and Jude (speaking of what was already entred, which the Prophets and the Apostles of the Lord Jesus had foretold should come, which was then already come) But, Beloved, (saith he, ver. 17.) Remember ye the words that were spoken by the Apostles of the Lord Jesus Christ, how that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, which should walk after their ungodly lusts. These be they who seperate themselves, sensual, having not the Spirit, ver. 18, 19. And John saith expresly, That it was then the last time—Little Children (saith he) it is the [last] time; and as ye have heard that Antichrist shall come, even Now there are many Antichrists, whereby we know it is the [last] time, 1 John 2 18—And in the Revelations he saw the Court which was without the Temple, to be given to the Gentiles, and that they should tread the holy City under foot four­ty and two Months, Rev. 2. 21. And in the Overthrow of Babylon, and the Return from the Apostasie, and after it, he speaks not of the Return again of that Ministration, but of a More glorious, a City wherein the Lamb was the light thereof: And I saw (saith he) [No] Temple therein; for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the Temple of it. And the City had no need of the Sun, neither of the Moon to shine in it, for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof: And the Nations of them that are saved shall walk in the light of it, and the Kings of the Earth do bring their glory and honor unto it, Rev. 21. 22, 23, 24. And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day; for there shall be no night there. And they shall bring the glory and the honor of the Nations unto it: And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh an abo­mination, or maketh a lye; but they that are written ia the Lambs book of life, ver. 25, 26, 27. And all sorrows (here) are wiped away; and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow nor crying; neither shall there be any more pain; for the former things are passed away. And he that sate on the Throne, said, Behold, I make all things new: And he said unto me, Write, for these things are true and faithful, Rev. 21. 4, 5.

And, to the Lambs Wife was granted, that she should be arrayed in fine Linnen, clean and white; for the fine Linnen is the righteousness of Saints, Rev. 19. 8. And, behold the Tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God him­self shall be with them, and be their God, Rev. 21. 3. And he saw the holy City, the New Jerusalem coming down from God out of Heaven, prepared as a Bride adorned for her Husband, ver. 2. And the Angel that flew through the midst of Heaven, having the everlasting Gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the Earth, and to every Nation, and Kindred, and Tongue, and People, said with a loud Voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his Judgement is come; and wor­ship him who made Heaven and Earth, and the Sea, and the Fountains of Waters. And the other Angel that followed him, said, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, that great City, because she made all Nations drink of the wrath of her Fornication, Rev. 14. 6, 7, 8. And rejoice over her thou Heaven, and ye holy Apostles and Prophets; for God hath avenged ye on her, Rev. 18. 20. And the Victory was to the Lamb and his fol­lowers, who sate on the white Horse, whom the Armies of Heaven fol­lowed on white Horses, cloathed in fine Linnen, white and clean, Rev. 19. 11. 16. And the Angel which stood in the Sun, cryed with a loud voice, and said to all the Fowls that flie in the midst of Heaven, Come and gather your selves unto the Supper of the great God, that ye may eat the Flesh of Kings, and the Flesh of Captains, and the Flesh of mighty Men, and the Flesh of Horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great, ver. 17, 18.

And, he that testifies these things, saith, Surely I come quickly: A­men; Even so come Lord Jesus, Rev. 22. 20. And behold I come quick­ly, and my Reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be, ver. 12. And I Jesus have sent mine Angel to testifie unto you these things in the Churches: I am the Root and the Off-spring of Da­vid, and the bright and Morning-Star: And the Spirit and the Bride say Come; and let him that heareth, say Come; and let him that is athirst Come, and take of the Water of Life freely, ver. 16. 17.

And he saith unto me, Seal not the sayings of the Prophesie of this Book; for the time is at hand: He that is unjust, let him be unjust still; and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still; and he that is Righte­ous, let him be righteous still; and he that is holy, let him be holy still. And I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and [Page 18] the last, Blessed are they that do his Commandments that they may have right to the Tree of Life, aad may enter in through the gates unto the City; For without are Dogs, and Sorcerers, and Whoremongers, and Murderers, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lye, Ver. 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15. For I testifie unto every man that heareth the words of the Prophesie of this Book; If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this Book: And if a­ny man shall take away from the words of the Book of this Prophesie; God shall take away his part out of the Book of Life, and from the holy City, and from the things that are written in this Book. Ver. 18, 19.

And so I have said to you what at present lies upon me from the Lord; whether you will hear or forbear; it shall witness for God against ye all (if ye hear not) in the Day that he shall ten­der to every man according to his Deeds. So farwel: It's my love unto you that hath drawn this for you from the movings of the Lord. It concerns you to mind whether your state stands not so as is here represented; and to turn unto the Lord, lest being so, ye be plucked up; For, every Plant tha [...] my heavenly Father hath not plan­ted, shall be rooted up, saith Christ: It's that which I said to ye in the beginning, in the Word of the Lord, and which I now say un­to you in the same, at the End: And the time is near.

Geo, Bishope.

To the PREYSBTERY (so called) in these Nations.


YOu have been staggering as Drunkards, and starting aside like a Deceitful Bow: You were of the Bishops, and came out from the Bishops, and covenanted against the Bishops, and have let in the Bishops, and have (many of you) turned, and many are returning to the Bishops; and this hath been, and is the Work of you, and of many of you, to be upwards and downwards, and back­wards and forwards; now here, and now there; reeling and rouling; pinching here sometimes, and drawing as contrary at another: You had a tender Principle once, which kept ye from evil as ye kept to it, whilest ye were under sufferings; but no sooner were you free, [Page 19] but ye took the places of them that made ye to suffer, and sought to make all others to suffer that differed from you; ye have been true to Nothing, not to your own Principles: Ye have built again the things that ye have destroyed, and so have made your selves Transgressors: None should live but you, had ye power to your Wills; and you would live with, and above every one: The Lord hath tryed you, and let the World see what you would do; and his servants have suffered sorely by you; and now he hath tryed you be­fore his servants, and ye are fallen before them whilst they stand: And yet there is not confideration with you, so as to think, Is not there a lie in our right hand? The Lord hath born long with you, and loath he is that you should perish: He hath suffered ye to fall into the same condemnation in which others are whom you would not have free: Ye had a Day which ye long strove for, and had the Door in your hands; You let it open against your selves (as it hath proved) as well as others; and it is well if so be it were not some­thing in that your wariness, lest you being so, others should be free: And now see what you have done; the Lord hath befooled you, and suffered ye to befool your selves, and to be befooled, because ye de­parted from the Counsel of the Lord; and so what wisdom is in you? Whilst Age and Generation lasts, this your Work will be your shame, and the Lord will be against you whilst ye turn not to him: For here was your miss at first, Ye kept not to your principle; you turned to persecute, who were persecuted your selves; and the far­ther ye went on in this, the more you were mad, as Paul some­times was, and so saith of himself when he was as to the Law blameless, and yet without Law as to Christ; and what your mad­ness hath brought forth upon your selves, judge ye. This (Friends) is to you in love,

'Tis time for you to consider, and to mind, that ye may see your state, and know what the Lord is doing to you, and the end of his working: He would have you to bethink your selves, and see where ye are: He would have you to mind that in you which shews you your state, and to hearken to the Reproof of Life, the Voice of Wisdom that your souls may live; and that out of all heats and rashness, and anger, ye may be brought into that calm state which doth unto others what it would have others do unto its self. A Zeale there is in many of you, and as to God; and something in some of you▪ which is sincere to him; but your Zeal is not according [Page 20] to Knowledge; for whilest ye go about things in the will of man, ye cannot accomplish the Righteousness of God; nor doth the since­rity alwayes guide you; for then you would not hurt your principle, which was once to suffer, in making, and in a mind that would make others to suffer; nor comply to things against your Princi­ple because of suffering; For Truth is great, and the Righteous is bold as a Lyon; and the feeling of a true Witness of God in a Man, carries thorough, as he abides in it, all that he shall meet with be­cause of it; and neither death, nor life, nor Angels, nor Principalities, nor Powers nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other Creature shall be able to seperate between a man and it (as he abides therewith) and that which turns from it is seperate, be­cause in the Testimony of Truth there is the Love of God, & where the Love of God is, it is in Christ Jesus; and the Testimony of Jesus is the Spirit of Prophesie; and that which witnesses, prophesieth, tea­cheth, and it beareth witness to God in this World, and to his Truth, and that there is nothing greater than it, or more to be de­sired; yea, it is more desirable than life; and this is made manifest when life and all is laid down for it; and this glorifies God, and is a Confession of him before men; as Christ himself made a good Con­fession before Pontius Pilate; And, he that confesses me before men, him shall the Son of Man also confess before the Angels of God (saith he) and he that denieth me before men, shall be denied before the Angels of God: And, to him that overcometh, will I grant to sit with me in my Throne; even as I also overcame, and am sate down with my Father in his Throne: And he that starts aside, never Overcomes; and he that doth not overcome, cannot sit in the Throne: But the fearful, and the unbelieving, and the abominable, and Murderers, and Whoremon­gers, and Sorcerers, and Idolaters, and all Lyars, shall have their part in the Lake which burneth with fire and brimstone, which is the second death: And because thou hast kept the Word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of Temptation, which shall come upon all the World, to try them that dwell upon the Earth.

Be still therefore, and cool, and come into consideration, and heed that in you which shews ye what ye have done; which shews ye all things that ever ye have done, as ye heed it; Is not this the Christ? And let the time past be sufficient, wherein ye have walked accor­ding to your own minds, and the will of the Flesh, which lusteth after envy, and return to the Lord, to the old state, which kept ye [Page 21] tender to God, and keeps ye still as ye keep unto it, and made ye not to dare to do any thing against him; and judged ye when ye so did; and judges ye still as ye heed it, when ye transgress it: This, this is the Way to God; the Reproof of Wisdom is the way of Life, and there is no other: It's from Christ Jesus the chief Shepherd and Bishop of your Souls, (said the Apostle) unto whom ye Return when ye are turned from going astray; which turns to him those who are turned from going astray; which is that which turns from going astray; For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now re­turned to the Shepherd and Bishop of your Souls; and when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a Crown of Glory that fadeth not away; said Peter to the strangers scattered throughout Pontus, Gala­tia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithina, elect according to the fore know­ledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit unto obe­dience, and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus, 1 Pet. 2. 25. And to the Elders that were amongst them, who fed the Flock of God that was amongst them, and took the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but wil­lingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; neither as being Lords over God's Heritage, but being Examples to the Flock, Chap 5. Ver. 4. This said the holy Man of God.

Friends, the tender Bowels of my Love is to that in you which suffers through all this heat and Lust, and the Will and Wrath of Man: This Doing that which ye would not be done unto; this turning to, and for, and against; this condemning your selves in the things that ye allow; this building again the things that ye have destroyed; this Violence to your Brother Jacob; this rest less spirit any where but where you would your selves; this contradictory spirit which is not of God, which is meek and gentle, and easie to be entreated; which doth no wrong; which suffers wrong; which avengeth not it self; whose is Vengeance; and who will repay it: Which when it suffers threatens not; which when it is reviled, reviles not again, but com­mits it to him who judgeth righteously; and this is the Spirit of Christ: The Bowels of the Lord God is the same in me to you: I am witness through the shedding abroad of whose Love in my heart to his Seed in you which suffers, and in his moving I have written: Who am▪

Your Friend, who truly desires your wel­fare in this world, and that which is to come: Geo. Bishope

To the People called Independents and Baptists.


YOU must come down to that which witnesseth in you, which is the Cross of Christ, the Power of God to salvation to as many as believe; and not live above it, and yet think in your hearts that Abraham is your Father; for, if Abraham were your Father, you would do the deeds of Abraham (said Christ to the Pharisees) but in that ye seek to kill me, a man which hath told ye the truth which I have heard of God, this did not Abraham. Now in that you obey not that which witnesseth in you, nor believe in it, you do not the deeds of Abraham; for, Abraham (said he) saw my day, and rejoiced; and before Abraham was, I am. Now in this Day he be­lieved, or he could not have seen it; and his day he saw, or he could not have rejoiced; and his Deeds he did, whose Day he saw, or he could not have believed: For, I believed, therefore I spake: And I know Abraham that he will command his Children and his Houshold after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord to do Ju­stice and Judgement, that the Lord may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him; and thou meetest him that rejoiceth and worketh righteousness. So the Joy is in that which worketh righteous­ness, and that which worketh righteousness is of Abraham; and that which doth the deeds of Abraham, seeth his day, and rejoiceth; and that killeth not, nor seeks to kill a man that tells ye the truth he hath heard of God. This did not Abraham.

Now (Friends) to be plain and short with you; You are the Chil­dren of Abraham no farther, and no longer than ye do the deeds of Abraham; but his Children ye are whose works ye do: And therefore said John to the Pharisees who came to his Baptism, O Generation of Vipers, who hath forewarned ye to flee from the wrath to come? Bring forth therefore, fruits meet for repentance; and think not to say in your selves, that we have Abraham to our Father; for I say unto you, God is able of these stones to raise up Children unto Abra­ham. And now also the Axe is laid to the Root of the Tree; therefore every Tree that bringeth not forth [good] fruit, is hewn down, and [Page 23] cast into the fire. I indeed, baptize you with water unto Repentance; but he that cometh after me, is mightier then I, whose shooes I am not wor­thy to bear, he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost and with fire; whose Fan is in his hand; and he will throughly purge his floor, and gather his Wheat into his Garner; but he will [burn up the Chaff] with un­quenchable fire.

So see (Friends) what fruit you bear, and whose Works ye do; Whose Tree ye are of; for, as is the Tree, so is the fruit; and as is the Fruit, so is the Tree: And if the Tree be evil, the Fruit is so; and if the Fruit be evil, the Tree is so: And every Tree that bring­eth not forth [good] fruit, is hewn down, and cast into the fire. And see (Friends) whether ye are Chaff or Wheat: For to this ye must come, if ever it be well with you: For he will thoroughly purge his Floor, whose Fan is in his hand, who baptizeth with the Holy Ghost and with Fire; whose shooes (John saith) he was not worthy to bear, and that he was mightier then he who came to baptize with water unto Repentance; and he will gather his Wheat into the Garner, and burn up the Chaff with unquenchable fire, as hath been declared.

In Bowels of tender love I write these things, as being moved of the Lord for his Seed's sake in you, that ye be not deceived in a wrong apprehension of your state, as in another, when you are not as he is in your selves: For, if whilest we seek to be justified by Christ, we our selves are found sinners (saith Paul) is therefore Christ the Minister of sin? God forbid: For if I build again the things that I have destroyed, I make my self a Transgressor. And if any man be in Christ Jesus, he is a new Creature. Old things are passed away; be­hold all things are become new; for, as he is, so must be that which is in him: For, What fellowship hath Righteousness with Unrighteousness? And what Communion hath Light with Darkness? And what Con­cord hath Christ with Belial? Or what part hath he that believeth, with an Infidel? And what agreement hath the Temple of God with Idols? For ye are the Temple of the living God (said Paul to the Corinthians, the Church there) as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. And he that doth righteousness (saith John) is righteous, as he is righ­teous: And, every man that hath this hope in him, purifies himself as he is pure; For as he is, so are we in [this] World: And whosoever sinneth, hath neither seen him, nor known him: And the Temple of [Page 24] God is holy, whose Temple ye are: And, if any man defile the Temple of God, him shall God destroy. And, know ye not that ye are the Tem­ples of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you, saith Paul a­gain to the same Church? And he that is born of God, doth not com­mit sin, for his Seed remaineth in him, and he cannot sin be­cause he is born of God, He that committeth sin is of the Devil, for the Devil s [...]nneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the Devil. Whoso­ever abideth in him, sinneth not. Little Children, let no man deceive you, he that doth righteousness is righteous as he is righteous. In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the Devil: Who­soever [doth] not righteousness, is [not] of God, neither he that lo­veth not his Brother, saith John again in his first Epistle.

Now (Friends) these things I have written unto you (as I have said▪ that ye may not be deceived; for while ye think to be justi­fied by Christ, and yet keep a liberty in some things to transgress, and in some things to heed the Witness of God, and believe not in him in that which witnesseth that that is He; ye will dye in your sins. Except ye believe that I am he (said he to the Pharisees) ye shall die in your sins: For, he became the Author of eternal salvation to as ma­ny as obey him, even to as many as believe in his Name: And this is his Name, The true and faithful Witness—Unto which answers that of him in the Conscience, and by which he will judge all men, and they shall be left without excuse; For, if ye were blind (said he to the Pharisees) ye should have no sin; but now ye say. We see, there­fore your sin remaineth. And, he was manifest to take away sin. And for this purpose was the Son of God made manifest, that he may de­stroy the works of the Devil. And sin is the work of the Devil. And he gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purifie unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. Now how can these things be, and Men abide in sin, and that to their Death? And how are they purged and purified from sin▪ who a­bide in sin? And how are they justified that are condemned for sin? And how are their sins taken away, whose sin remain? And how are they in Christ Jesus who are not new Creatures? And how are they as he is in this world, who sin while they are in this world? And how are they righteous even as he is righteous, who do un­righteousness? and all unrighteousness is sin: And how do they pu­rifie themselves as he is pure, who abide in sin! And how is he be­come [Page 25] the Author of Eternal Salvation to them who neither obey him, nor believe in his Name? And how are old things passed away, when they are there still? And how are all things become new, when there is the old? And how can that be in him, which hath neither seen him, nor known him? And how can that have Eternal life, which will not come to him?

Friends, These things are deep and weighty, and it behoves ye to consider whilst ye have time, for the Door is near shutting, and the Lord is at hand, to render unto every man according to his [work] and as your works are, so will be your reward. So 'tis high time to look about you, that ye may be sure of your works, and that they be wrought in God; For, the Night is at hand wherein none can work; but every man must be tried according to his work, for what he hath, not what hath another. The Lord hath long wait­ed on you, and his presence hath been amongst ye, and he hath been with you whilst ye have been with him. He is now come whom ye knew not, though he was with you: The times of this ignorance God winked at; now he commands men every where to repent, because he hath appointed a Day in the which he will judge the World in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained, whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead; and if Christ be not risen, then are ye yet in your sins: But Christ is risen, and is become the first fruits of them that slept. And that he is risen, appears by his Witness in all men, which testifies to all, and witnesseth to his K [...]ngdom, which is an everlasting Kingdom; and to his Dominion, which shall never have end. And it bears witness to the Lord, that he desireth not the death of a sinner, but rather that he may return and live (as he hath sworn) be­cause there is that of him in every one that seeks them to live; over which Death hath no more dominion: For, in that he is ri­sen, Death hath no more dominion over him, but he liveth unto God: And, he is the propitiation for our sins: By Faith in whose Blood we have access unto God by this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered in the flesh, arm your selves with the same mind; for he that hath suffered in the flesh, hath ceased from sin, that he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh, in the lusts of men, but to the will of God.

And so (Friends) I leave you to the Witness of God to answer to me in this thing (which will answer to me if you heed it, you will hear it) for I am moved of the Lord unto this in bowels of Love, and it wil leave you without excuse. So Farwell: My Love is to the Seed of God in you, who am known to many of you by the Name of


To the People of these Nations.


YOu have had Long and Great Warning; the Lord hath rai­sed up from amongst ye of your Sons, and of your Daughters; of your servants, and of your Neighbours, faithful Witnesses unto his Name; who by Word and Writing; Conversation and Exam­ple; Doing and Suffering have testified of his Day that is come; wherein he will judge every one according to his Works; and that the Axe is laid to the Root of the Tree; and every Tree that brings not forth good fruit, is hewen down, and cast into the fire; and therefore he warned you by them all to bring forth fruits meet for Repentance whilst the Door was open, and whilst he called; that when you should call in the Day of your distress, he might arise and deliver you. And by them he shewed you the way unto himself, even by hearkning to, and obeying that of him within every one of you; which shewed ye evil, and re­prov'd and judged you, and shewed to you what ye should do; by which the Holy Men of God of Old drew near unto, and were drawn to the Lord; and by which those of your Sons and Daughters, Servants and Neighbours, who have testified as afore­said, and remained faithful have drawn near, and were brought to the Lord, and have felt his power to give them Victo­ry over sin and evil, and the corrupt Conversation in which they lived whilst they were ignorant of, and believed not in him who witnessed in them; who is the Power of God to salvation to as many as obey him; even to as many as believe in his Name.

Now, Friends, after all this Warning, and gracious Visitation the Lord hath long waited to see whether ye would turn to that which witnesseth in you; which is of God, and obey it, that your souls may live, and be redeemed out of Death, and from the bondage of Corruption, In which you are who are servants unto sin. For as many as are led by sin, are servants unto sin; and as many as are servants unto sin, are in bondage to sin; and as many as are in bondage to sin, are in Death, and the Son hath not made them free; For if the Son make ye free, then are ye free indeed, saith Christ; and the Truth makes free, and this is Truth, To be­lieve in the onely true God, and Jesus Christ whom he hath sent; and that of him in you which shews ye your state, and your condition, and your Enemy, and his working, and where ye are, and how ye are fallen, and gone Out of the Way; Is that which is come to redeem you out of that state; and to deliver you from your Enemy, and to recover you back again, and to guide your feet in the way of Peace, that your Souls may have rest with God.

And this you know every one of you, You cannot stifle it; It's too late to do it; the Lord hath reached to his Witness in you; and hath given you to see all this, and how you should hearken to that of him in you which shews ye all this, and the secrets of your hearts, and searcheth your hearts, and trieth your reins, and shews you the compass and end of your actions, and that ye should do none iniquity, it tells you in secret. Now that which shews ye this, is greater then all; for, it should never shine in your Consciences, & shew you this, & the way to God, could that which hath you in Captivity keep it out, & it concerns you to heed, and to have heeded this, that so the Lord's loving-kindness might not be in vain as to you, nor the striving of his Spirit, nor the stretching forth of his Arms to draw and gather you; for this of a truth I have to say unto you, That ye have all need of him, & of his mercy; not that he hath need of you: And he might have left ye all in the state wherein ye were by Nature, even Children of Wrath, and never have shewn ye where you were, or that ye were sinners; or, in such a state; nor your Enemy; nor what an Ene­my he is, until ye come to feel his Wrath, and to be tumbled into the Pit, out of which none that goes, ever comes. But he hath visited you, and shewn you what is good, To do justly, to [Page 28] love mercy, and to walk humbly with the Lord; and something hath striven in you since the time you could remember, and shew'd you evil, and judg'd you for evil; yet it ye have not obeyed, but have been conformed to the World, and to the Fashions and Customes of the World, which are evil, as you have been led, and you have done the thing which ye have been convinc't is evil; although ye have been judged in your selves, that that was evil; and knew that that was the Judgement of God and that his Judg­ment is Just: And you know that the things which ye have been convinced of to be evil many years ago, and have been judged▪ for it, do yet remain with you, and that the Lord hath been rejected, and his drawings slighted, and his Enemy and yours heeded, & that ye have refused to come to him that ye might have life, to the light which makes manifest; for whatsoever is made manifest, is made manifest by the Light; and, I am the Light of the world (saith he) he that believeth in me, shall not abide in darkness, but shall have the light of life. And, this is the condemnation, that Light is come into the world, and men love darkness rather then light, because their deeds are Evil. And, in him was life (saith John) and the Life was the Light of men; that is the true Light that lighte [...]h every man that cometh into the world.

And this you know (as I have said) viz. That there is such a thing in you, and the thing in you witnesses that it is so; and ye can­not blot it out; and that ye have disobeyed it, and do disobey it; and that it suffers in you; and yet you are vain, and proud, and wan­ton, and lustful, and do conform to this world, and do lye, and de­ceive, and cheat, and cozen, and swear, and are drunk, and do spend the creatures upon your Lusts; and do hate, and do kill, and do steal, and do commit Adultery, and do covet your Neighbours Goods, and do grind the Faces of the Poor, and oppress and smite with the Fist of Wickedness, and take the Name of the Lord in vain; and do go beyond one another in dealing where you would not be done so to your selves: These things I say ye know are so; and yet ye con­tlnue as ye were before; and these things continue in you; and ye think the Lord is such a one as your selves, because he holds his peace and hath a long time been silent, and hath not brought his Judge­ment upon you; nor caused ye to feel the Power of his Wrath; and ye think to morrow shall be as to day, and much more abundant, be­cause the Lord hath been long-suffering, slow to anger, abundant in [Page 29] goodness and truth; not willing that any of you should die, but rather that ye should return and live.

And this is the Use ye have made (many of you) of his loving kindness, and mercy, his long-suffering and forbearance; to add Drunkenness to Thirst, Iniquity unto iniquity, and to draw iniqui­ty with Cart-ropes of Vanity: And you cannot think (many of you) how to be Vain enough, nor Drunken enough; nor Proud enough; nor Voluptuous enough, nor Consumptive of his Creatures enough; and ye declare your sin as Sodom; the shew of your countenance witnesses it against ye; and ye think that ye are delivered to commit all these Abominations; as if the Lord took Pleasure in these things, or delighted in them; and as if this was a Retribution Equivalent to him for all your de­liverances; and as if it were the summe, and the end of all his working; and as if the more vain and wicked ye are, the more ye give him thanks; and the more ye answer the end of his working▪ and so ye lavish out your selves in all riot and excess, as he hath been liberal to you in his Mercies; as if this were the thing the Lord aimed at in all, and expected as the Return of his Good­ness; and ye have been very bold (many of you) thus to do, notwithstanding that that of him in you tells you (and ye know it) that ye should do otherwise, and judgeth ye; and so ye over­turn your own Mercies, and provoke the Lord to be jealous of his Name and Glory, which he hath said he will not give unto another; and to make ye examples to the ages to come of his judgments, as he hath made ye patterns of his mercies; and to let the world know, by what he shal do unto you, that he is a God that delighteth not in iniquity, nor shall sin come near his Dwelling; but that he is holy, and will be sanctified in all that draw near him, & be had in Reverence by all that are about him.

And this I am moved of the Lord God of Heaven and Earth to warn ye of; and to let ye know that he will appear against you; and that he will vindicate his Name and his Glory in what he shall do unto you; and that he is drawing near to plead with you, and to render unto you according to your works.

Therefore in the Bowels of Love, I exhort and warn you to break off your sins by righteousness, and your iniquities by shewing mercy to the Poor; if so be there may be yet a lengthening of your tran­quility. For this I have received from the Lord God; whose Word [Page 30] and Warning it is, that he will make a short work with you; and after ye have filled up the measure of your Iniquity, (which he will suffer ye to fulfil, if so be yet ye shall not hearken, nor yield obedience to his voice, nor depart from iniquity, nor choose to do the thing that is good, which that of him shews ye in your hearts) He will cut ye Down, and his judgments shall come upon you; and ye shall know that this is the Word of the Lord, and his War­ning unto you, through his servant


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