AN Epistle of Farewell To the People of God called QUAKERS, Where Ever Scattered or Gathered in Eng­land, Ireland, Scotland, Holland, Germany, or in any other Parts of Europe.

MY Dearly Beloved, and Highly Esteemed in Christ, our heavenly Head; the Living and Good Shep­herd of the Sheep, by whom we have been found out (one of a Fa­mily, and two of a Tribe) and made One holy Flock and Family unto Him, in this day of his Spiritual and Glorious Appearance: Grace, Mer­cy and Peace, yea, His Peace, Which the World can neither give you, nor take from you, be plenti­fully multiplied amongst you from day to day; that a holy, harmless, and faithful People you may be, yielding to the Lord the Fruits of his [Page 2] Goodness, by a Circumspect and Self-denying Conver­sation to the End.

And now, my dear Friends, whom I Know and Love, and you also whom I truly love, tho' I do Not Know Personally, nor may be so known of some of you, since it has pleased the Good and All-wise God to order my Course from you, so that I cannot visit you; as I have often desired, before I left you: This therefore is to be my Bro­therly Farewell unto you. And surely my Soul is Bowed in Humble Petitions to Israel's God, The True, and Living, and Powerful God, that it may be well with you all, here and for ever. And, my Dear Brethren, this is certain, if you Do well, you shall certainly Fare well, and in the End of all your Trials, Troubles, and Temptations, it shall be said unto you, Well Done, Good and Faithful Servants, Enter ye into the Joy of the Lord. O it is that which crowns the work. Not Saying but Doing, we must not only Begin, but End well; and hold out to the End. Not of those who are weary of Well-doing, but who follow the Lord fully, as Caleb and Joshua did in old time, and are Famed for it. So that tho' God has Appeared to us, and Given us many and undeniable Testimonies that it was He, and not Another, who Reached our Hearts, and Touched our Consciences, and brought us to Con­fession, yea, and Forsaking too, of that which offend­ed [Page 3] Him, in great measure, Blessed be his Name, yet we are not to stop, or take up our Rest here: We must Watch still, Pray still, Fight still, that good Fight of Faith, till we have overcome the Enemy of our Souls: And even then must we Watch and Pray, and that to the End of our Days; that we may not lose that Crown of Glory, which God the Righteous Judge, shall give to all those that love his Appearance, overcome, and persevere to the End: For be assured we shall reap if we faint not: But we shall faint if we wait not upon God, who alone is the Strength of his People.

This, My Dear Friends, is that which lies with greatest stress upon my Spirit; Watch to your Dayly Preservation, and be not satisfied unless you feel it. Sufficient is the Day for the Evil thereof, say'd our Blessed Lord. God is not wanting: He that long stood at the Door of our Hearts, under our Impe­nitency in times past, till his Locks were wet with the Dew, and his Hair with the Drops of the Night, till we were wakened out of our Carnal Security, and came to Judgment in our selves, unto unfeigned Repentance, to be sure he is not weary of waiting to be Gracious now to his poor People; Especially if they are Poor in Spirit, and hungring and thirsting after Righteousness; and are not fill'd, overlaid, and choak'd with the Cares and Incumbrances of this World. No, He was ever Good unto Israel, yea, unto [Page 4] all that are of an upright and clean Heart: Wherefore, Brethren, let your Eye be to the Lord, and wait of­ten upon him; Walk with him, and Dwell with him, and he will Walk and Dwell with you: And then no Weapon form'd against you, be it in Particu­lar, or in General, shall prosper; that is, not finally. It may perhaps Try you, and bruise your Heel, as it did your Lord and Master's, but it shall never fi­nally Prevail against you, if you keep the Eye of your Minds to him, and have faith in him, who saved Daniel in the Lyons Den, and Shadrach, Me­shach and Abednego in the fiery Furnace, and has upheld us to this Day under various Afflictions. And tho' Balaams there are, that may be hired by the Balaks of our Age, to Curse our Israel-Family of God, of which some of us have been very sensible; Yet this we know, The Son of God is among us, who commands the Fire, and the Water, and the Winds, as well now as then: And there is no Inchantment against Jacob, or Divination against Israel, that can prosper. And who knows but even some of these present Balaams may yet live to say, before they dye, as others of them have done since we were a People, How goodly are thy Tents, O Jacob! How plea­sant is thy dwelling place, O Israel! But then, Friends, we must keep our Tents, we must be a Retired and a Peculiar People, and dwell alone. We must keep above the World, and clear of the Spirit of it, and [Page 5] those many Trifles, Cares and Troubles that abound in it, with which but too many have visibly wounded and pierced their own Souls.

Beware of this in the Name of the Lord, and do not Tempt God; it is in Christ ye have Peace, in the World is the Trouble: Keep therefore in him who has called himself (and we have found him so) the Way, Truth and Life; and you shall live because he lives: He the Root, you the Branches, by whom you will be kept Green and Fruitful, bring­ing forth the Fruits and Graces of the Holy Spirit, in all your Converse, and Commerce, that it may be seen and said, God is with you, and amongst you. O let Humility, Charity, Meekness and Self-denyal shine amongst you; so will you come to sit, as did the Primitive Christians, in Heavenly Places in Christ Jesus, and be preserved through the Noise, Snares and Hurry of this present Evil World.

Much I could say, for my Heart is open, and full too of Divine Love and Matter to you; but time fails me; therefore feel me, my Dear Friends, in that Love of God which is over Sea and Land; where Distance cannot Separate, or Time Decay, nor many Waters quench. In which Love I Embrace and Salute you all, with the Kiss of our heavenly Fellowship, which the Lord hath given us in the Blessed Truth. And my strong Desires are to him, that we may maintain our blessed Relation by the [Page 6] same means, by which we came at first into it, viz. the true Fear and Love of God; which did not only make us careful, not to offend him, but also to be willing to forsake all things that came in Competition with him, or our Duty to him,

Oh let this Chaste Fear and first Love abound a­mongst you, my Beloved, in Christ, our Blessed Light and Life; or you will Decay, Wither, and Dye to God, and your Good Beginnings; which God Almighty forbid.

I know there is a Serious and Diligent People amongst you, who do not only know when Good comes from the hand of the Lord, but wait upon him for it, and that dayly: That their Souls may be strengthened in the way and work of the Lord: And these can no more live without his Presence, his mystical and hidden Manna, in their Spiritual Journey, to the Eternal Canaan of God, than out­ward Israel was able to live without Manna in the Wilderness in their Journey to their temporal Cana­an. And I Beseech my God and my Father, and your God and your Father, my Dear Brethren, to attend all these holy Waiters upon him with the good things of his House, and Dayly make them Glad in his Holy House of Prayer.

But the Condition of some, who pretend to follow Christ, yet are afar off, affects my Spirit; for they know little of these Enjoyments, and hard­ly [Page 7] Eat so much as the Crumbs that fall from Christ's Table, and seem to satisfie themselves with a meer Convincement of the Truth, or at best with a bare Con­fession to it. Who taking up with a formal Going to Meetings, and Hearing what others have to say of the Work and Goodness of God in and to them, they shun the Dayly Cross of Christ. Whereby they should dye dayly to their earthly Wills and vain Af­fections, and Overcome the World, the Flesh and the Devil. Oh! these are still their own, and not the Lord's; and gird themselves, and go Whither, and do What they list! For which cause they are Lean, Bar­ren and Ʋnfruitful to God and to their own Souls; and Worship him in the Form only, and not in the Power of Godliness; such must needs be weak in Faith, ready to slip and start aside at every windy Doctrine, or sensual Temptation.

Oh! My Dear Friends, let me prevail with you in this my Farewell to you, to turn your Minds in­ward, and wait to feel your Redeemer, and meet him in the way of his Righteous Judgments; for there is no Redemption but through Judgment, nor Conversion, but through Righteousness. Come and be baptized by Christ; He will Baptize you with his Fire and Holy Ghost. He will Scowr and Rinse you; for, believe me, his Fan is still in his Hand, and he will, if you will let him, throughly purge his Floor, viz. your Hearts, and make all things Clean and New there, by [Page 8] his Spirit and Power. So will you Come to find your Interest in Christ, as you feel his Workmanship and Interest in and over you. And as you thus come to be related to Christ, the Heavenly Head (by know­ing him to be Head in you) so will you come to be re­lated to his Body, the Church, and see your Proper Membership, and Service therein; which I pray God effect, to his Glory and your Comfort.

And now to the whole Family and Flock God in this Eu­ropean part of the World, of the same Communion according to the Dispensation of God, be they High or Low, Young or Old, Rich or Poor, Wise or Simple, Strong or Weak, Male or Female, Bond or Free, I send this parting Salutation, of my most Dear Love in the Truth; beseeching you all to have Me and Mine in your Remembrance, not only when upon the mighty Waters, but when in the Solitary Desarts of America, if it please the Lord to bring us safe thither: For I am not above the Love and Prayers of my Dear Brethren, knowing I need them, and have often found, by Good Experience, that they avail much with the Lord.

I must leave you, but I can never forget you; for my Love to you has been, even as David's and Jona­than's, above the Love of Women: And suffer me to say, That, to my Power, I have from the first endeavoured to serve you (and my poor Country too) and that at my own Charges, with an upright Mind, however mis-understood and treated by some, whom I heartily forgive. Accept you my Services, and ever Love and Remember, My Dear Friends and Brethren, your Old, True and Affectionate Friend, Brother and Servant, in Christ Jesus,

William Penn.

Printed and Sold by T. Sowle, in White-hart-court, in Gracious-street, 1699.

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