By Richard Hubberthorne.

London, Printed for Giles Calvert, at the Black Spread-Eagle neer the West end of Pauls. 1656.

The distance between Flesh and Spirit, &c.

THis is the word of the Lord to all people, as I am moved of the Lord to clear the scandals and false accusations cast upon the righteous seed; and as the seed of God in all generations hath suffered reproaches from the world, so now the same seed, where it is brought forth, suffers by this generation of evil do­ers, and is afflicted and tormented, and shamefully accused now in England, whom you call Quakers: and you say we deny all the Ordi­nances of Christ; and you say we do not honour the Magistrates; nor are sub­ject unto authority, but are disturbers and breakers of the peace, which is false.

The first Accusation. You say, we deny Repentance.

Answ. And this is false, for Repentance is the gift of God, and this gift we have received, and his free Grace, which teacheth us to deny all ungodliness and worldly lusts, Tit. 2. 12. And by Repentance have forsaken sin, as it was discovered to us by the light of Christ, which he hath enlightned us withall, and so the mercies of God we have found according to his promise, and are sent of the Lord to preach Repentance to all people, who would have all men come to re­pentance, and to the acknowledgement of the truth, that they might be saved. 2 Tim. 2. 25. And with the word of the Lord, as they are moved of the Lord, do ma­ny go now with this Doctrine into your Streets, into your Markets, into your Synagogues, and into your Cities, to call you to repentance, before the wrath of the Lord come upon you: & both sons and daughters now are sent to preach this doctrine amongst you from the Lord, and for obeying the Lord herein, are they reviled by you, and persecuted, and falsly accused, and this is left for a testimony against you from the Lord, and shal bear witness against you.

The second Accusation is, That we deny baptism.

Answ. The baptism of Christ we own, which all the Saints were baptized into, which was, by one Spirit into one body, as in 1 Cor. 12. 13. and by this bap­tism we do witness the washing away of sin, not onely the washing away the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience towards God: But sprinkling of Infants we deny, which there is no Scripture for. And all you who from your imiginations do imitate Iohns baptisme, and so go into the water, and say, You are believers, and have right to the Ordinances of Christ, but you to be believers we deny, who are not yet come to Repentance, and your water-baptism, which is but an imitation from the Letter; for the Lord never sent you forth, nor commanded you neither to preach nor baptize, as they did whom you go about to imitate, who are not yet come to repen­tance, nor to the first Principle of the Doctrine of Christ, not to own the [Page 2] light of Christ in your consciences, which should exercise them, and lead you to wait upon God, and lead you to repentance, and the faith of believers you know not, for the mystery of faith is held in a pure conscience. 1 Tim. 3. 9. which you cannot witness, which hates the Light of Christ, which should exercise your consciences, and so your mindes and consciences is defiled, and with that minde you talk of faith, and of the Ordinances of Christ, and of water-bap­tism, which serveth unto us for a figure, as the Apostle saith, 1 Pet. 3. 21. And Jesus Christ was baptized by Iohn by water, that he might fulfill all righteous­ness, Mat. 3. 15. And Iohn was a Prophet, and Christ is the end of the Pro­phets; and Iohns baptism was but a figure, for he said, He did but baptize with water, but Christ is the end of all figures, types, and shadows, and did fulfil them, for he fulfilled all Righteousness, and Iohns Ministery, and Iohns Bap­tism, and he that fulfilled all Righteousness, the same baptizeth, which Iohn did bear witness unto, and all men came unto him, John 3. 16. but hee baptized none with waeer: but this is a mystery to thy dark minde, which knows not the baptism of Christ, nor Iohns Doct [...]ine, nor Jesus Christ the true light, which enlightneth every one that cometh into the world, which Iohn bare witness unto, Ioh. 1. 9. but goes to hold up the types and figures which Christ came to fulfill, and so denyest Christ to be come in the Flesh to ful­fill all Righteousness, and so thou art an Antichrist, who holds up the figures which Christ came to fulfill, and so thou denies the Scriptures and Christ, who said, he came to fulfill all Righteousnesse; and the Saints baptism thou art ignorant of, which is, by one Spirit into one Body, 1 Cor. 12. 13. And Paul who was a Minister of Christ, and preached the Gospell, did bring many into this baptism, and he was not sent to baptize with water, but to preach the Gospell; and all the Churches which he preached unto, came to witness Christs Baptisme with the Holy Ghost and with Fire, by one Spirit into one Body, and was baptized into Christ who was the Head of the Body, Rom. 6. 3. and by this baptism we are thus washed from all filthiness of Flesh and Spirit; but your imitated baptisme of Water we deny, who live in your filthiness of Flesh and Spirit, whose mindes and Consciences are defiled; but the baptism of Christ we own, which purifies our Consciences from dead works, and keeps our minds undefiled by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost, Tit. 3. 5.

The third Accusation is, That we deny the Sacrament, which is an Ordinance of Christ.

Answ. For the word Sacrament, there is no such Scripture which speaks of a Sacrament, therefore we do deny you and your Sacrament, and your bread and wine, which is carnall, and feeds the carnall which must die, and your Communion is in that which is carnal in the creatures; and Drunkards, and Swearers have fellowship together with you in those things; and all Lyars, Covetous ones, Prophane and Idolatrous ones eats of the bread, and drinks of the cup, and sits at the Table, which is the Table of devills, and this is your Sacrament, which stands without in carnal bread & wine, and feeds the carnal, which oppresseth & murders the seed of God within you; & you say, Christ hath left that as an Ordinance for you to practise: which is false, which we deny; but the Supper of the Lord we own, The Cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the Communion of the blood of Christ? and the bread which we break, is it not the Com­munion [Page 3] of the body of Christ? for we being many are one bread, for we are all partakers of that one bread, 1 Cor. 10 16, 17, 21, 22. And this is the bread which came down from heaven, he that eateth thereof shall never dye; and this bread we all eat of, and this cup we all drink of, and this is that which is practised and commanded in the Church of Christ, and so we sit at the Table or Christ, and cannot sit nor have fellowship with the Table of Devills: and they who sit at your Table and your Sacrament, and eats of your bread, and drink of your wine, they die, for it is not the bread of life; and you who eats and drinks it, doth not di [...]cern the Lords body, for it is spiritual, and your Sacrament is car­nal, And so you eat and drink damnation to yourselves, not discerning the Lords bo­dy, feeding the carnal with the carnal, and so we deny your Sacrament to be a­ny Ordinance of Christ, or the Supper of Christ, 1 Cor. 11. 29.

The fourth Accusation is, That we deny the resurrection of the body.

Answ. And that is false, For at the sound of the last trumpet the dead shal be rai­sed, they that have done good shall arise to the resurrection of life, they that have done evill, to the resurrection of condemnation. And we preach Christ risen from the dead, and if the dead rise not, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also in vain, and you are yet in youe sins, who knows not this resurrection, Christ risen from the dead in you, 1 Cor. 15. 14, 15, 16, 17. But some man will say, How are the dead raised? and with what bodies do they come? 1 Cor. 15. 35. Thou fool, that which thou sowest, thou sowest not that body that shall be, but bare grain, it may chance of wheat, or of some other grain, but God giveth it a body as pleaseth him, and to everyseed his own body. There is also coelestial bodies, and bodies terrestrial; and the glory of the coelestial is one, and the glory of the terrestrial is another; there is one glory of the Sun, and another glory of the Moon, and another glory of the Stars, for one Star differs from another Star in glory. So also is the resurrection of the dead, it is sown in corrup­tion, it is raised in incorruption; it is sown in dishonour, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power, it is sown a naturall body, it is raised a spi­rituall body, 1 Cor. 15. 35, 36, 37, 38. Now this I say unto you all, That flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdome of God, neither doth corruption inherit incorruption, 1 Cor. 15. 50, 51, 52. But this is to you all a mystery, who are in the first na­ture, whose understandings are not enlightned by the light of Christ, who lives in your sorms, notions, and professions of these things in the letter, feeding your carnal mindes with the Letter, which is death and killeth, and so your mindes are drawn from the Light of Christ within you, into outward obser­vances of meats and drinks, bread and wine, divers washings and carnal Ordi­nances, which were figures of the time then present, Heb. 9. 9, 10. and you deny. Jesus Christ the substance, who is the true light that enlightneth everyone that cometh into the world. Now to the light in you all I speak, which Christ Jesus hath enlightned you withall, and if you love this light it wil lead you out of all your carnal Ordinances and worthips, and divers washings, which stands in the first covenant, which was before Christ, and is done away in Christ the se­cond covenant, and it wil lead you to worship God in the spirit, and into the doctrine of Christ, to yea and nay in all your communications: but all you who are got up high in forms and profession, you are not yet come to yea and nay, but are out of the doctrine of Christ, and walks contrary to the light of Christ in your consciences, which light shall be your condemnation that hates it, Iohn 3. 19, 20. though you be got up high in your forms, and notions, and [Page 4] words of the Saints conditions, who spoke in the light and from the life: And you who have the form, but not the life, shall be condemned by the life; and you who hate the light, shal be condemned with the light and life which gave forth the Scriptures.

The fifth Accusation is, That we do not honour Magistrates, nor are subject unto Authority, but are disturbers and breakers of the peace.

Answ. Justice we own, and righteousness; and all who love the light of Christ which he hath enlightned them withall, it will lead them to act justice. And all Magistrates, I charge you in the presence of the living God to act accor­ding to that which is pure of God in the conscience. And all Magistrates who act according to that of God in the conscience, are honoured by those who fear the Lord, and walk in obedience to that in the conscience: and these who act justice according to that in the conscience, they do not bear the sword in vain, for that in the conscience is according to the Law of God, and all you Magi­strates, who are set over the people to do justice, and execute the Law upon of­fenders, this is the word of the Lord to you, to mind the light of Christ in your consciences, and it will cause you to act according to the place of a Magistrate; but if you suffer swearers, and drunkards, or lyars, or oppressors, or fal [...]e weights, or strikers, or quarrellers, or fighters, and do not punish them, or whoremongers, or idolatrous, or idle persons without a calling; and thou that passeth by these things, and doth not act justice according to the Law, then thou acts not according to that light in the conscience, and thou bears the sword in vain, and that in the conscience will take hold upon thee, and con­demn thee, and will execute the righteous Law of God upon thee who refuseth to act according to that in the conscience: but those whom you call Quakers, act according to that in the conscience, and they are no fighters, no str [...]kers, no drunkards, no swearers, no oppressors, no whoremongers, no idolaters, no fornicato [...]s, no lyars, no scorners, no revilers, no false accusers, not proud, not high-minded, not thieves, not murtherers, for they give Obedience to that in the conscience, which crucifies them to all these things, & so the Law can­not take hold upon them, and from the Lord do they declare against all these things where they are yet standing, which the Law of God takes hold upon. And you who are called Magistrates and Justices, as you pass through the Streets, in the Cities, and in the Markets, you may hear men swear and lye, and be drunk in the Al [...]houses, and you pass by them: and when any of the Servants of the Lord, who are sent of the Lord into the Markets or Cities, and declare the VVord of the Lord against drunkards, and swearers, and lyars, who are cheating one another, & cozening one another, and bid them repent, and declare to them the just judgement of God which is to fall upon them, and all such whom thou who art a Magistrate hath neglected to act justice up­on, & to punish according to the Law, then they who are drunkards fall a figh­ting and striking, and hales them to thee who art a Magistrate, which should punish the drunkards and swearers, fighters and strikers, and thou sayest, they have distu [...]bed the people, and broken the peace, when they have declared the VVord of the Lord against Sin and Vngodliness, and all the unrighteousness of men, which thou should have punished by the Law; & thou art called a Justice of peace, and this is thy peace which is kept with drunkards, and swearers, and strikers, & fighters, and is disturbed by the word of the Lord declared from the [Page 5] mouth of the Lord by his Servants against all these things, who are not guilty of any of those things, & here thou art no Minister of God; but an encourager of evill doers, and discourager of those that do well, which declares justice from God against those whom thou should act justice upon; and when they are brought before thoe, then thou wouldst have them to honour thee, who art a vile person, and no Minister of God, and no Honour belongs unto thee; but he who Ministers Justice from that which is pure of God in the Conscience, is worthy of double Honour; and because they will not honour thee who acts no Justice but according to thy corrupt will, and is not obedient to that of God in the conscience, thou sends them to prison, or out of the City, or out of the Markets, or stocks them, or whips them; and if a drunkard, or swearer will put off his hat to thee, and bow to thee, and call thee Master, thou dost not im­prison such a one, nor punish him neither with stocks, nor whips, nor counts him any breaker of the peace; and here they who break the peace, and act con­trary to the Law of God, are spared, and are at liberty; and they who keep the peace and do violence to no man, they are punished by those who should act Justice in the Land. And here iniquity is set in the place of Justice, and is at liberty, and truth is imprisoned by the Rulers of the Nation.

And to all Rulers I speake from the Lord to that in your consciences, min­ding it will let you see who it is that is not subject to Authority, whether they that are drunk, or they who declare against drunkenness, whether they that swear, or they who declare against swearing, and deny to swear at all; whether they that fight and strike and beat one another or they who never lift up a hand against any man, but declare the word of the Lord against such things.

And them whom you call quakers are no drunkards, nor no swearers; for Jesus Christ saith, Swear not at all, but let your yea be yea, and your nay be nay; and so they abide in the doctrine of Christ, and keep the peace of God, and are justified in the sight of God, and are no breakers of the peace, but are subject unto Authority, and for conscience sake cannot break the Commands of Christ, nor do any wrong nor violence unto any man and the peace; for they are no fighters nor strikers, Rom. 13. 45. but they are smitten and striken, and [...]lley give their backs to the smiter, and hide not their face from shame and spit­ting, as the same seed Christ did, who passed before, Isa. 50. 6. who preach­ed repentance, & spoke in Cities, Markets, & Villages, and by the Sea-coasts, and then all the Citie was on an uproare, as it is now, and their peace was broken, and they were disturbed, and they smote him on the face, and buffetted him, and imprisoned him, left if he should be let alone, all men should believe on him. And you are the same generation now, for any who are sent of the Lord now, to preach repentance, to turn you from your iniquities, that your mindes might be turned to the Light of Christ within you, which will check you for sin and evill, then your Cities are on an uproare against them, to per­secute them, and so you fill up the measures of your fathers iniquity.

A word from the Lord to all you who are called before the Magistrate to be a Jury, who swear before the Magistrates to see the Law put in executi­on, and that you will execute the Law upon drunkards and swearers, and that you will see that the poor, the fatherless, and widows be relieved, and [Page 6] not see them want, and this you swear before the Magistrates, That you wil see it performed, and that none be idle, nor wander abroad without a calling; and some of you that swear to punish drunkards, are drunkards, and have fellowship with drunkards; and you that swear to punish swearers, are swear­ers; and here out of your own mouth you are condemned, and by the light of Christ you are judged, who are swearers, you are out of the commands of Christ, who saith, Swear not at all. And you see the poor, the fatherless, and widows in want, and you do not relieve them; and you see idle persons with­out any calling, and you do not set them on work; but they live in idleness, devouring the creation; and herein you do not perform your vowes, nor ex­ecuse the Law which you profess, and so acts contrary to the light of Christ in your consciences.

Now to the light of Christ in you all I speak, and charge you in the presence of the living God, to take heed unto it, and it will let you see wherein you have transgressed the pure Law of God, and suffered sin to reign unpunished, and it will bring the condemnation upon you, who have acted contrary to it, and taking heed to the light, it will lead you out of all those things which the Law of God takes hold upon, and will adde the Law upon every transgressi­on, and all you that act contrary to the light of Christ in the conscience, it will be your condemnation, and you are they who deny the Ordinances of Christ, which walks not according to the light of Christ, which he hath en­lightned you withall; and you are they who are not subject to Authority, who are not obedient to the light of Christ in the conscience, and you are the disturbers and breakers of the peace, whose mindes are not guided by the light of Christ; and this light will let you see, giving heed unto it, who are out of the commands of Christ, and is not subject unto authority, nor obedient to the light of Christ in the conscience.

And here I have cleared my conscience to you all from the Lord, to the light of Christ in your consciences I speak, which will eternally witness mee to have spoken the truth unto you all, who have falsly accused the inno­cent,

As I was moved of the Lord, who is a servant unto you from the Lord, in love to all your souls to set up righteousness in the Land.

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