JOYFULL TIDINGS TO THE Begotten of God in all.

WITH A few words of Counsel unto FRIENDS Concerning MARRIAGE.

W. S.

Printed in the Year 1664.

Joyful Tydings, &c.

THe Deliverer is come, let all that mourn wait for him, and let all lamps be truly trimmed, and let all stand so prepared as that he may be known in his coming, and be received and followed into the kingdome, for they that slumber are in danger to misse him, and they that are hasty cannot finde him, & on these hands the kingdome is lost: therefore thou that mourns for him, and waits to be delivered by him, keep thou in the faith, and in the patience stand thou still, and joyn not with the carelesse, or with the forward spirits, but be quiet in thy place, and keep thy eye in that which lets thee see thou wants him, and the necessity to be delivered by him, and there thou standing still in the watchfulnesse, he will come in an hour that thou knowest not of, for there is not a groan that rises from the innocent in thee, but he hath great regard unto it, and his compassion breaks in the same hour, but for the time of deliverance thou art to wait, because that hour no man must know: therefore let all be still, and eye the Lord, for his hand is at work, and they that keep their own hands quiet, will know his work to prosper, and in the stillnesse will feel his faithfulnesse to his own begotten, for where doth the Father leave or forsake his own child, and in what place is it beset, and he helps it not; and where is it in bondage, and he delivers it not: if the faith be kept, and the pati­ence continued in, he fails not in his work until he hath performed the counsel of his own will, for in his will the babe is begotten, and in his will in due time it is born, and none can adde unto his work; and therefore all are to be still and quiet in the light, and therein watch and wait for his own hour, so will he draw nigh unto thee that mourns for him, and with his arms of mercy he will embrace thee, and take thee up, and heal thee, and carry thee forth of the land of thy captivity, then shalt thou return with ioy indeed, when thou art inclosed in the arms of thy beloved, and this is his own hour which none can know until he come, and in this hour he binds up the broken-hearted, and saith to the weak, I am thy strength; and to the poor, I am thy helper; and to the mourner, I am thy comforter; and to the captive, I am thy deliverer; this is my hour, and I am come to set the free, thou hast [Page 3] patiently waited, and hast not grudged; thou hast been still, and hast not repined; and in thy lowest state my arm hath reached to thee, and in all thy distresses I have drawn nigh to succour thee: but this is the hour in which I am come to deliver thee. O thou patient mourner, this is the voice of thy beloved, hearken not unto another, for his word is sure, and all his promises faithful, and behold he speaks comfortably to thee, and brings thee joyful tydings of deliverance: turn not th [...] face from him as if he was a stranger, for it is he, and it is his hour, he hath seen thy travail since the day he begat thee, and in all thy afflictions he hath been af [...]icted with thee, and he hath not delayed his coming though thou hast thought him long, and in the depth of thy misery hast secretly cried, why doth he not make hast to help me, and why are my afflictions so continued upon me, hath he not in that hour been near un­to thee, and hath he not in that time been thy comforter, and hath he not secretly relieved thee, though thou hast not known it, and here he hath been thy support, that thou might not faint untill his own hour came to deliver thee. O that any who have been visited should misse of this hour, either by carelesnesse or forwardnesse; for that which saith he delayes his coming that is the carelesse spirit, and that which saith, Behold he cometh, let us go forth to meet him, (mark) let us go forth that is the hasty forward spirit, it leads forth of the faith, forth of the patience, forth of the stayednesse, forth of the contentednesse, and so from waiting in the pure and perfect measure of light which cometh from him, and in which he cometh in his hour, and neither of these births are delivered in a right hour, but are both born out of due time, and the carelesse proves heavy and dies, and the forward proves a va­pour, which in its rise was something, but suddenly mounts into the air, and after a while is no more seen; but the still quiet babe that waits in the true patience, it is safely delivered in the time appointed, and in the hour determined, and though it hath been long bruised, yet it hath patiently endured, and though it hath long sitten mourning, yet it hath been contented, and in the deepest of its misery, it hath fled for refuge to the throne of mercy, and hath not been without some se­cret faith and hope in God, yea in the very time when it could not see which way any relief should come, yet it hath breathed unto the Father, and hath put its whole trust and confidence in him, and so by a depen­dancie upon the life of its generation, it hath lien under the arm of pre­servation, [Page 4] it hath not said he delayes his coming, and I am weary of waiting, neither hath it said, behold he cometh, I will go forth to meet him, but here I lye bruised, and my mourning is not hid from him, and here I will wait for the hour of his coming, I have no strength to move untill he come and help me; and therefore he must find me where I am, and do all for me that is to be done, or here I must lye and mourn out my days. I dare not slumber least I should misse his coming, nor I dare not go forth to meet him, least I should not find him, but here will I sit and wait for his own hour. O thou babe of tendernesse, that watch­est for thy beloved with diligence, thou art the object of the Fathers pity, and he is not forgetfull of thee, neither indeed can he, for thou art his natural child, a babe of his own begetting, and in thy travail he is with thee, and in all thy distresses he comforts thee, and in thy deep afflictions he is a support unto thee; thou art the bruised, and he is come to heal thee; the mourner, and he is come to comfort thee; the captive, and he is come to deliver thee; this is his hour, though the powers of darknesse be strong, Oh thou innocent babe, thou art deeper in feeling then words can expresse, there is none knows thy travail but who are of the same life with thee, neither can any eye truly pity thee but the eye which only hath compassion on thee, thou art the babe which in all thy afflictions lives by faith, and though thou hast not deliverance in thy view, yet through thy faith thou art stayed in him that loves thee, and in his strength thou standest in the time of thy adversity, and he in all things worketh for thee because thou art no­thing in thy self, and whereever thou art his power defends thee, and in thy poverty his pleasure and delight is in thee, for his covenant stands sure with thee for ever. Oh thou glorious birth of immortality, thou art well-beloved and highly favoured of God, yea in the womb he loves thee and favours thee, and from the day of his deliverance, and the hour of thy birth he delights to honour thee, for out of all earthly fami­lies he hath chosen thee, and from all false births he separates thee, and the Gentiles glory he will give unto thee, and the high places of the earth he will make thy foot-stool, the glory of thy rising vanish [...]th the night, the appearance of thy beauty makes a perfect day, all clouds scatter before thee, and all earthly fogs and mists clears up at thy pre­sence, the lights of heaven withdraws at thy rising, for the lustre of thy brightnesse excells all borrowed lights, and thou swallowest them up into thy glorious body, and with the splendour of thy own breakings [Page 5] forth thou covers them as if they were not; there is no mixture in thee, no dross nor tin cleavs unto thee, for the furnace hath separated all earth­ly matter from thee, that thy life may shine forth in perfect purity, and thou alone may rule the day which belongs unto thee; Oh thou art the precious Jewel in which is unity, none can be bound up but in thee, none can inherit the Kingdome besides thee, for the Father hath prepared it only for thee, & there thou must dwell alone, & not be num­bred with transgressours any more, thy glory goes over the earth, and thy renown ascends above the Heavens, and both earth and Heaven must give up unto thee, for thou art the Son, and all must worship thee, all below thee is earthly, all above thee is airy, but in thy life is perfect temperance, and everlasting substance, and there is nothing endures or remains besides thee, all the Virgins are in love with thee, the sweet sa­vour of thy ointment draws them after thee, and they cannot deny thee, nor forsake thee, but where ever thou goest they are constrained to follow thee, and in thy love they rejoice in union with thee, and sings thy praise in the heavenly harmony.

Oh Sion! put on thy strength, and cast thy mourning garments from thee, for the most high Remembers thee in everlasting mercy, he hath seen the time of thy widowhood, and the dayes of thy long captivity, he hath beheld thy solitary places, and the years of thy great adversity, and now he is drawing nigh to work deliverance for thee, and to ga­ther thee out of all places, where thou hast been scattered, and from a­mongst all strangers by whom thou hast been oppressed, and to ad­vance thy holy hill over all the earthly glory, that he alone may dwell in thee and delight himself in thy lovely beauty, therefore let thy mourn­ing be turned into joy, and thy sorrow into songs of praises, for thy deliverer is come, and he smiles upon thee with a lovely countenance, and the praise of the whole earth shalt thou be, saith the Lord, who doth all these things.

Let the tongue of the dumb be unloosed, and read the joyful tydings within, where the Lord is redeeming his chosen, and raising up his Seed which obtains evelasting blessings.

A few words of Counsel unto Friends, concerning Marriage.

THe Honourable Marriage is in the Seed of God, Male and Fe­male in the seed are one, and lies down together in the bed [Page 6] undefiled, where God blesseth them and their Seeds Seed for ever, therefore let all friends eye the Lord in this his day, and keep faith­full to the leadings of his power, lest the sons and daughters of stran­gers entice any of your minds to join with them, and so you goe into the defiled bed and loose the honour; and be watchful that you run not forth in a hasty eager mind among your selves, but waite that ye may have clearnesse in the counsel of the Lord, that so ye may under­stand that it is of God in the beginning, for if you keep not stayed in the light, with the light to be guided; you may either look at the world or at the party, as the first thing upon which you fix your eye, and so may labour to compasse the party either for the love of the worlds riches which they may possesse, or to satisfie your affections with the outward beauty or comelinesse of the person, and so the drawings and leadings of God will not be regarded; but the worlds riches, or the per­sons comlinesse, or both, will be the object of your eye, and whoever begins in this ground, the Lord will blast it, and if any come to feel that they have a real moving in the truth and in simplicity one to ano­ther, and that in the beginning they look singly at the begotten of God one in another, then wait to be preserved and kept in Gods fear and counsel; for here the enemy will stand to present some temptation to entice and entangle the minds, and if ever you open your eye into the world, and begin to look at the glory and honour of it, that part will presently over ballance the real simplicity, and then the eye being fixed upon the worlds riches and glory, the enemy hatches a secret de­sign which way to compasse it, and attain it, and then the temptation becomes a cloud and a vail over the excellent glory of the beautiful seed, and if that eye which looks into the world, and lusts to compasse it, be not answered in its desire, then the love which hath been professed will decay, & cool, and die, but and if that end can be obtained which the eye looketh after, then the love will seemingly increase to a joining in the Covenant of Marriage, and this is not honourable though outwardly it may be brought to passe and effected, and whosoever goes together in this ground, they will suffer losse in the truth, though they may gain the worlds substance, and death will surprize them in the earth where they center, and how are many tossed about and cannot find where to settle, nor where to come into a liking to satisfie their wandering eye, but sometimes will draw a conclusion one way, and in­stantly [Page 7] turn from it again, and presently joyn with some new presen­tation which in its appearance seems to shew fairer unto their liking; and thus many staggers up and down in the multitude of their own thoughts, and never waits to feel the Lords power to order them, but through the wiles of the enemy are hurried in a restlesse state and looses their conditions in the truth, and doth not well perceive it, for if ei­ther strangers be joyned unto, or the world or beauty be first looke [...] at, or the world catch the mind from the real movings in the simplicity, or whatsoever end any layes to themselves in this matter, they through the same will come to great losse in the truth, whether the thing which they aim at be effected or not effected, for if the mind be drawn into any visible appearance as to have a lust after it, and to prescribe waies and ends to accomplish what is intended, there cannot be a clear stand­ing in the truth, where the mind is exercised about the attaining or ef­fecting any such things, for they all stand in the liberty of the will, and not in in the power of God which crosseth it.

Therefore this is the counsel of the Lord God unto all friends, look not at the sons or daughters of strangers, lest you become one with them, neither look at the worlds riches amongst your selves, but wait low in Gods fear to receive his counsel in every such motion, & feel his hand to open the way for you, & when you feel a clear way opened of the Lord, & that in his eternal power & wisdom you can reach the Seed one in ano­ther, then wait for his time to make you up as one in the counsel of his own will, & when thus you feel his hand at work, then do not you begin to say, we have clearness from the Lord in this matter, but now we would know how it must be as to an outward portion or estate, and so begin to look into the earth, and conferre one with another about the things of this life, for if any do so, the Lord will draw back his hand, and hide his counsel from you, and will leave you in the dark to grope in your own way, & though you may obtain those things which your eye in that place looks after, and may effect the thing which you aim at, yet there you cannot obtain the Lords favour and blessing, not that the world or the riches of it is hereby denied in their places, for if the Lord join any to­gether in the Seed, and that the things of this life be enjoyed by either party as an outward portion, there they may prove serviceable as in God [...] wisdom they are used, & the encrease will be blessed, but where the world is chiefly looked at, & that the joining or not joining depende [...] upon it, [Page 8] in that place it is denied and not otherwise, and let not any Friends make way one for another by speaking to any party, except they feele a necessity layed upon them from the Lord, for thereby some may be wronged in their simplicity, by giving up their be­liefe unto another, but let all wait to feele their own movings in Gods counsell and leadings, and so to manifest their own mind in his fear and wisdome, that it may be felt on both sides to be of the Lord, & then lay it before some weighty friends that are en­dued with heavenly wisdom, that the ground of the motion may be bal­lanced in sound judgment, & so to wait for the Lords hand to carry it on & finish it in his pleasure, & where it thus comes to pass in a single heart to God & one another, there will be true contentment with what the world affords on either part, & whether it be more or less, it will be enjoyed in its place with comfort & peace; & though parties may differ much in age, or in outward substance, yet the marriage is equal, because it is of the Lord, for equality stands not in age or wealth according to the worlds account, but in the prosperity of the seed, in which both age and youth becomes one flesh, & is made to flourish in one perfect beauty, & hath an equal portion of wealth in the enduring substance, and who are thus joined together of the Lord, & abides faithful with him, his blessing rests upon them every way, & he preserves them fresh and living in his truth, for where death runs over any in that state, it is because the thing is not brought to pass in Gods counsel, or otherwise not abiding faith­ful with him when it is effected by him, & so the world becomes a trap & a snare to entangle, & fond affections becomes a hinderance for fol­lowing the Lord fully. Therefore let all friends be exceeding carefull in this weighty matter, which in the ground lies beyond the reach of the earthly wisedom, and can never be effected by it, to the glory of God, or the honour of his truth, nor to the peace and happinesse of such as so obtains it, but where it is begun and finished in the counsel and will of God, and that there be an abiding faithfull with him, he hath the glo­ry in it, and his peace and blessing remains with such as a continual portion of endlesse joy.

Oh this is the day wherein the lamb espouses the undefiled virgin which hath followed him through great tribulations, and is washed white in his precious bloud.


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