Friends, this is the day of the trial of your faith [1 Pet 1:7], and therefore be faithful; for the faith is it by which you have victory ;[1 Jn 5:4] and access to God [Rom 5:2]; by faith all the fiery darts of satan are quenched [Eph 6:16], and by faith the mountains are subdued and removed [1 Cor 13:2]; and in this faith all your sacrifices are accepted of God, and that gives you victory and access to God; and in this faith you please God [Heb 11:6], and that gives you victory over that which displeased him; and in this faith you have all unity [Eph 4:13], which is the faith of God's elect [Tit 1:1]; the one faith [Eph 4:5], which keeps you in the oneness, and all the sacrificers, and worshippers, and religions that are not in this faith, are not one, their sacrifices nor offerings God hath no respect to, but they are like Cain's [Gen 4:5], that went from the presence of God [Gen 4:16], and persecuted about his religion [1 Jn 3:12], who built a city in the land of Nod [Gen 4:17], which signifies, wandering to and fro, and unsettled, and tossings to and fro, up and down. And this is the city that all that persecute about religion live in, the land of Nod, tossings, wanderings to and fro; let them be of what profession or religion soever, heathen, Jew, or Christian, if they be persecutors about religion with carnal weapons [2 Cor 10:4], they are in Cain's land of Nod, wandering out of the faith of Abel, of the elect; in which faith God accepts the sacrifice [Heb 11:4], and these are in the land of the living; but Cain's land of Nod, where the envious ones are persecuting others about religion, in that land God has respect to none of their sacrifices nor religions. The outward Jews had outward weapons to hold up their outward services, for which they had a command from God; but the heathens had no command from God to hold up their inventions; and Christ Jesus came to end the Jews' law and commandments, that held up their outward services, together with their outward weapons, and all outward things. And he who is the substance reigns, for all the types, and figures, and shadows were given to man [Col 2:17], after man fell, <254> but Christ that comes to redeem man out of the fall, to the state that he was in before he fell, ends them all, and in him there is no shadow [Jas 1:17]. So he sets up a spiritual ministry, and spiritual worship, and a spiritual fellowship, and a church that is without spot or wrinkle [Eph 5:27], and a religion that is pure from above [Jas 1:27/3:17]; and this religion is ruled with spiritual weapons. And now, friends, here you may discern what is set up by Christ and his spirit, and what is set up by man. For Christ who ended the Jews' laws and commandment, who preached, and taught his disciples who were to go into all nations to preach the gospel [Mat 24:14], to gather people unto him, and to establish churches; he gave forth no command nor order, that those that would not hear them, nor receive them, his law, his commandment, his doctrine, should be persecuted, imprisoned, or banished; though he suffered, and was blasphemed, and persecuted, and his apostles, for publishing forth the truth; and he rebuked them that would have had men's lives destroyed, and said, that he came to save men's lives [Luke 9:54-6]. And the apostles, and the true church in the primitive times, before the apostacy, that were in the spirit of Christ [Rom 8:9] Jesus, walked in the doctrine of Christ, and his commands, and did not persecute any about religion, nor imprison among themselves, nor others about religion, though they had ordinances and commands amongst them for the utmost; and if they rejected the churches counsel, they were to be left as heathen, which was the utmost penalty [Mat 18:17]. And so here you may see, the spirit of Christ did not persecute any for not observing that which it gave forth and set up, which it received from God. Now here is a distinction betwixt the spirit of Christ, and the spirit of fallen men; for that which man's fallen spirit sets up, which he hath invented, if others will not fall down to it, and worship it, he persecutes them. This is the practice of the heathen and Jews, that transgressed the law of God, and followed their inventions, who persecuted the prophets, and killed the just one [Acts 7:52]. And this is the practice of the spirit of all the apostatized christians from the primitive spirit which was among the christians, which was the spirit of Christ. So that spirit that does set up ordinances commandments, ways, religions, worships, and persecute others because they will not observe them; this is the spirit of the world [1 Cor 2:12], that lusts to envy [James 4:5], and not the spirit of Christ. And also those are the works of men which they persecute about, and not the works of Christ, which neither he nor his apostles persecuted about. And so here is a clear distinction to you, that you may know what leads to the spirit of Christ, and what lusts to the spirit of envy; for the spirit of Christ does not persecute any that do not receive that which he sets up; but the spirit of the world doth persecute them that will not receive that which it sets up. And in this you may try both fruits [Mat 7:16] and spirits [1 Jn 4:1] (as the rod of Moses devoured up all the magician's serpents [Exo 7:12]) <255> of the lying signs and wonders [2 Th 2:9]; so shall the rod of Christ, who has all the power in heaven and earth given unto him [Mat 28:18], who will rule all nations with his rod of iron [Rev 12:5]. Christ's rod shall and will devour all the serpents and lying wonders of the spiritual Egypt and Sodom [Rev 11;8], yea, and all the serpents that be in all nations; for all nations are to be ruled by it. And Moses' song was sung [Exo 15] when his rod had devoured the serpents, and the outward Egyptians in the sea : so the lamb's song [Rev 15:3] shall be known, as all the spiritual Egyptians' serpents are devoured by Christ's rod; and the spiritual Egyptians being overthrown in the sea, the Jews in spirit shall rejoice and sing the song of the lamb. The abomination that made desolation, that is spoken of by Daniel the prophet, which should come in after the daily sacrifice was taken way, and should continue one thousand two hundred and ninety days [Dan 11:31,12:11]; this abomination hath made desolate from the truth, light, life, and the power of God, true religion, and true worship, and true church and fellowship. So the beast that John saw and speaks of, which must continue forty-two months [Rev 11:3, 13:5], and the whore, the false church, upon the beast [Rev 17:3]; which beast should be worshipped forty-two months; the time of his continuing; and the whore should sit in her scarlet, the false church upon the beast. The true church this time has been in the wilderness a thousand two hundred and three-score days [Rev 12:6]; which is now come out again, and the man child is come down from heaven to rule all with his rod of iron, and the lamb and the saints shall have the victory [Rev 17:14, Dan 7:22], who make war in righteousness [Rev 19:11], and are going on conquering and to conquer [Rev 6:2]. And so you followers of the lamb be faithful and valiant for the truth upon the earth [Jer 9:3], and heed not your native soil, but mind the birth that is born and brought forth from the womb of eternity, that separates you from your mother's womb, by which you believe in God, and fear not man, what he can do unto you [Psa 118:6, Heb 13:6]; neither look at the hills for salvation [Jer 3:23], for the Lord can make the rocks a standing pool [Psa 114:8], and the mountains streams. And therefore dwell in the power of God, which was before the fall of man was; whose fallen spirit persecutes those who are come to taste of the power of Christ's resurrection and life, and in this power of God you will not be weary nor faint [Isa 40:31], which was before the fallen spirit was that doth assault you. And in this power you will have stability, content, comfort, joy, and peace. And keep over that spirit, let it not have power over you, that may receive the truth in a notion, and may be a little civilized by it, that is ready to join with every gainsaying core [Jude 1:11], and is ready to wander after every strange thing that is new, and so will follow strange flesh [Jude 1:7], who are uncleansed by the power of truth, and unestablished in it; and such often have their religion to seek, that live in questionings and disputings [1 Tim 6:4f] in carnal reasons [Rom 8:6f], out of the power of God, in which is <256> the fellowship, the one thing, which is Christ the substance [Col 2:17], in which all stability is felt, which has little room in such hearts.
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All you prisoners of the Lord [Eph 4:1] for his truth's sake, and for keeping the testimony of Jesus Christ [Rev 12:17], against all the evil inventions, traditions, rudiments [Col 2:8], will-worships, feigned humilities [Col 2:23], and self-righteousness of them that be in the fall, who are out of God's power and righteousness, who have no weapons but carnal [2 Cor 10:4], like themselves carnal. Your patience must overcome all these rough and hasty spirits [Prov 14:29, Eccl 7:9] in the world, and your love must bear all things [1 Cor 13:7]; for patience obtains the crown which is immortal, which runs the race [1 Cor 9:24f/Heb 12:1]. So it is the Lamb must have the victory [Rev 17:14] over all the unclean airy spirits [Eph 2:2], and over him that is out of the truth [John 8:44]. So, be meek and low, then you follow the example of Christ [Mat 11:29], and come to bear the image of the just, who suffered by the unjust [1 Pet 3:18]; and put on his righteousness, who suffered by the unrighteous; whose back was struck, and his hair was plucked off, and face was spit upon [Isa 50:6], and yet cried, ‘Father forgive them [Luke 23:34].’ Here he kept his dominion, a sufferer who had the victory, which the followers of the lamb do in measure attain unto. So put on courage, put on patience. Let your loyalty be known; for your king that hath conquered the devil, death, and hell, in walking in righteousness, peace, and truth, feeling the power of God, teaching every one of you when words are not uttered. And let your faith be in the power that goes through all things, and over all things, and every one hearken to it. So the power of the mighty God know, (the arm,) and how it works, and the hand how it carries you, which brings out of tribulation, and thraldom, and spiritual Egypt [Rev 11:8], into peace. And this is the power of God, in which you feel to before enmity was, and be at peace one with another, then you live in the prince of peace's [Isa 9:6] kingdom, and dominion, and life; in which is unity, which was before enmity was, which destroys it. And so in the power of the Lord God you are made strong [Eph 6:10], which goes over the power of darkness, and was before it was, which is out of the power of God. And all people that are from the witness of God in their own particulars [1 Jn 5:9f], they are all weak and feeble, and stagger. All men and women's strength is in the power of God; that goes over the power of darkness [Col 1:13]. So feel all this to go through all, and over all, preaching and working in you; and let the ear be lent to it, and hearken to it in one another. And by it feel the seed raised up in one another, which is heir of the power, that you may know each your portion. For all people that be from the witness of God in their own particulars, that are erred from it, and hate the light [John 3:20]; they are full of darkness, sin, and <257> iniquity. Inspiration and revelation, while their minds are erred from the spirit [Isa 29:24] of God in themselves, are hid from them. So when their minds are turned with the light and spirit of God, towards God, then with it they shall know something of revelation and inspiration; as they are turned with that of God from the evil, and emptied of that, then there will be some room in them for something of God to be revealed and inspired into them. And therefore in that, they will have prophecies, and seeing things to come; being turned from the evil that hath darkened them, and separated them from God; in which they will see the covenant, through which they will come to have peace [Ezek 37:26] with God.
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Friends,—You who now come to suffer by a land flood, keep on the rock [Mat 7:24f], for there is safety, though a storm be in the sea, and the flood be great, and the winds great, and the way rough and crooked, the seed Christ can make all plain [Isa 40:4]. And so think not the winter and cold weather, nor the night, long; for the lilies do grow, and the gardens do give a good smell [Hos 14:5f]; and there is a difference between the carnal mind and a spiritual [Rom 8:6f], and the meetings of Adam in the fall, and them that be gathered into Christ the resurrection, and the life [John 11:25], and power, and spirit. And the sun shines, and the light is clear, and not dim, that you may see your way, and life, though there is a storm and tempest in the sea. And so mind the summer, and singing of birds; and not the winter and night, in which evil beasts do yell. And so blessed and happy are you that have the oil in your lamps, and have risen at the voice of the bridegroom [Mat 25:1-10], and have laid up in store against this day that is come; which, now all the rich in profession, who thought they had something, are come to poverty, your old opposers. And the rock remaineth. And therefore all, and every one, from the highest to the lowest, let none take your crown [Rev 3:11], but be faithful, for the Lord's ears are open to the cries of his oppressed and afflicted ones [Psa 34:15f]; he heareth the groans and cries, day and night, of them. And the Lord's eye is open, and he sees all the actions of men, and times and seasons are in his hands [Acts 1:7], who is King of kings and Lord of lords [Rev 19:16]; the strong and all sufficient, omnipotent God, Elshdy [Gen 35:11], who destroyeth the destroyer, and ruineth him that would destroy and ruin all; who by his seed destroyeth him and his works [Heb 2:14, 1 Jn 3:8]. And so in the seed sit down, in whom ye have life and peace; and he remaineth, and changeth not [Heb 13:8], who now reigneth and is over all; and in him live, that hath been slain from the foundation of the world [Rev 13:8], and prisoned and pressed as a cart with sheaves [Amos 2:13], and yet gave his back and cheeks to the smiter, and his hairs to the pluckers of them off [Isa 50:6]. And <258> so in him, the second Adam [1 Cor 15:45], you will not be weary, nor faint [Isa 40:31], nor think the time long of your sufferings. For all the weariness and faintings are in Adam in the fall. And so your church being in God [1 Th 1:1], and your worship in the spirit, and power, and truth [John 4:24], which the devil is out of [John 8:44]; and your fellowship in the gospel the power of God [Rom 1:16], which was before the devil was, keep your fellowship in the power of God, and look above all outward sufferings, and dwell in that which is above all, and will stand when all other is gone. And so dwell in the love of God, and in the unity of the spirit [Eph 4:3], one with another. And in that the Lord God Almighty preserve you all; yea, over all that which is contrary to his power, to his glory, for ever. Amen.
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All my dear friends, in the everlasting power, life, and truth live, for you cannot live without it in the winds and storms. And though the hills and the mountains are burned [various, e.g. Psa 83:14, Jer 51:25], and the trees are become fruitless [Jude 1:12], and winter hath devoured the former fruits, and you do see that persecution hath choked them, and the heat hath scorched them [Mat 13:6, 21]; whereby the untimely figs are fallen [Rev 6:13], and the corn is withered on the house-top [Psa 129:6], and the night is come, and the evil beasts go out of their den. But truth lives [1 Esd 4:38], and the power of God is over them all; and Christ ruleth, and there is bread of life [John 6:35], and water of life in him, and in his house; though the caterpillars and locusts are agreed to eat up all the green [Psa 105:34f]. But, as you are in the truth, you are in its day; and they in the darkness, are in the day of darkness [Joel 2:2, Zeph 1:15]. And all who are in the truth, rejoice through Christ, in the God of truth [Psa 31:5], and never heed prisons, for they are but for a time; and mind him who hath all times and seasons in his hand [Acts 1:7]. And never heed the raging waves of the sea [Jude 1:13], nor be troubled at his tongue that speaks nothing but tribulation, anguish, and bondage; nor be troubled at the cords of the ungodly [Psa 129:4]; for the cords of love [Hos 11:4], the power of God are stronger. And what doth he that sits in heaven, but laugh them to scorn [Psa 2:4]? And so be valiant for the truth upon the earth [Jer 9:3], for the power is the Lord's. And so my love to all Friends in the everlasting seed, that never fell [1 Pet 2:22] nor changeth [Heb 13:8].
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My dear Friends and brethren,—The Lord is with you all every where, who suffer for his name and truth's sake, in all your bonds and afflictions [Acts 20:23] be of good comfort, for the Lord is with you; neither be dismayed at your sufferings, for if you suffer, Christ suffereth; and if you be persecuted, it is Christ that is persecuted; and if you be not visited, it is Christ that is not visited; and if you be oppressed, it is he that is oppressed [Mat 25:42-45]. And he will lay no more upon you than you are able to <259> bear [1 Cor 10:13]. And the angel of his presence [Isa 63:9] suffered with the outward Jew, and Christ suffereth with the inward Jew in the spirit: and so hath a fellow-feeling with you all, in all your bonds and afflictions; and Christ who suffereth, will overcome all his enemies. He reigns, and they must be his footstool [Heb 10:13] to stand upon. And so, be of good faith, and be valiant for the truth upon the earth [Jer 9:3].
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My dear friends and brethren, all every where, keep your habitation [Jude 1:6] and your first love [Rev 2:4], and do not go forth from your rule of faith and life within; in which you all have unity and fellowship, and the Lord will be your comforter and teacher. And if you do not go forth from the light, spirit, and truth within, the light you will feel to guide and lead you, and instruct you. And by it you may have immortality put upon you. And be not ashamed of Christ Jesus [Luke 9:26] the light, and life, and teacher; nor of his spirit to lead you. For, can they find no occasion against you, but because you worship God in spirit, and obey the command of Christ Jesus. And so, as the old cry was, ‘away with such a fellow from the earth, it is not fit for him to live [Acts 22:22];’ so it is now. But blessed are those that keep their habitations clean, and live in the power of the Lord, which was before the curse was.
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All my dear friends and brethren, who are of the royal seed of God!—Patience obtains the victory that runs the race and obtains the crown [1 Cor 9:24f/Heb 12:1]; be married and joined to the seed Christ the Lamb, slain from the foundation of the world [Heb 13:8]; from its foundation, I say. For as you are joined to the seed, and married to that which hath been slain from the foundation of the world, which hath the victory and doth overcome [Rev 17:14]; by this you come to the end of the world [Heb 9:26]; mark, to its end. And now all Friends, look upon the sufferings that have been since the fall, and since the world began. And again, look upon the valiant prisoners, and such as stood with the Lord and for the Lord, and followed and obeyed his movings, and motions, and commands; with the victory they had, how they triumphed in the Lord, over that which was against the Lord; for by faith Abraham forsook his country [Heb 11:8], and his Father's house, and his national worship. And by faith was Abel's offering accepted of God, unto whom God had respect [Heb 11:4, Gen 4:3-5]. Therefore did wicked Cain persecute and kill him about his religion [Gen 4:8]. And this was not long after man was fallen from the righteousness, and the power, and the image of God, which man was made in [Gen 1:27]. And by the faith, and the power, and wisdom of God did Moses go down and speak to Pharaoh <260> the king of Egypt, and through the power, and hand, and arm of God he led them out of Egypt; which signifies misery, thraldom, and bondage; though afterwards when they were come out, and had tasted the power of God, many fell. And Moses saw Christ, the great prophet that was to come [Deut 18:15], which was to build his house [Heb 3:2-6], (as Moses by the wisdom of God had done his, in the time of the law, with types, figures, and shadows,) and so look upon Moses how he conquered all the magicians, and comprehended all the sorcerers, and soothsayers, and Pharaoh's religion, and their worship [Exo 7 - 9], and could not bow nor bend unto it.
Look upon Joseph, who through the enmity in his brethren was sold into Egypt [Gen 37:28], who underwent reproach and imprisonment [Gen 39:20]; unto whom God gave power over all at last, and confounded all the wise men, and the national worshippers in Egypt, and came in favour over them all by the power of God [Gen 41]. And remember Abraham, who was in the faith and the fear of God; and how Abimelech's house for his sake God plagued. Therefore keep in the faith of Abraham [Rom 4:16], then who wrongs you the hand of the Lord will turn against them. And whilst they stood in the power of God, what victories they had over their enemies! As instance Sampson, David, and Saul. But when any went from the command of God, how under the heathen they fell! So now ye who are come to God's power, which goes over the power of darkness, and before it was; in that stand, triumph, and trample; who are come to the end of carnal weapons, and striving with outward arms. And ye may look upon them, how valiant they were over the Philistines, both Sampson and David, and his mighty men, when they were in the power of God; and how David's three mighty men broke through a whole host to fetch water to refresh David [2 Sam 23:16]. Therefore now ye in the power of the Lord, the mighty God, go over all the Philistines of the earth, and their carnal weapons [2 Cor 10:4], as there they in the time of the law did with carnal weapons. And how often Jacob's well was stopped up (the beloved of God, the second birth) by the Philistines [Gen 26:15-18]; but Jacob did thresh the mountains as he did arise, and drove them away; by which he might drink again [Isa 41:14-18]. So read this in the substance, who are come to the second birth, which goes over Esau and the Philistines, both which was before they were. And also remember how the prophets were imprisoned, and put into dungeons and stocks, &c. As in particular Jeremiah [Jer 20:2f, etc], and how they were mocked, and scoffed at, and reproached, for declaring against the sins and wickedness of the times, both by rulers, teachers, and people; and yet by the power of God they were carried through, and over all. And the cry was then ‘Cursed is he that puts his trust in man, or feared man, or the arm of flesh [Jer 17:5],’ &c. Top
So remember Daniel, and the three children, though prisoners, yet could not bow to the national worship, and so were cast into the fiery <261> furnace [Dan 3], and the den of lions [Dan 6], unto whom the Lord God gave dominion over their enemies, and confounded the national worshippers, with all the magicians, and made the king to change his decree and law. And this was in the Babylonish monarchy; and when the Medes and Persians got up, the power was changed, then they cast Daniel into the den of lions, because he prayed to his God contrary to the king's decree, to whom God appeared again and confounded them all, and made the king or emperor to change his decree. Therefore keep faith in the power of God, for that is it by which the elders of old obtained a good report. And consider Mordecai, who stood faithful, and could not bow to proud flesh, though it was in danger of destroying all the Jews, over whom, through obedience to God, he gave him victory [Esth 3 - 8], by which he came to answer the good in all people. Now consider, they that came to profess Christ, who was the substance before the types, figures, and shadows [Col 2:17], which were held up by the Jews in the law, and first covenant, and priesthood, and ordinances, (which Christ the substance came to end,) how that, I say, the christians of old by that kind of people, the Jews, as you do now suffer the most, and have done, by them that are the greatest professors of Christ's words, but out of the life and power of Christ, which the apostles and saints were in in the primitive times.
So it is no new thing, and, as Solomon saith, ‘here is no new thing under the sun [Eccl 1:9];’ for it is not a new thing for the birth that is born after the flesh to persecute the birth that is born after the spirit [Gal 4:29]. And look upon the apostles, and consider how they suffered, (and by whom,) that bore testimony to the substance; their sufferings were by such as were in the husks, shadows, inventions, and rudiments of the world [Col 2:8], and such as were fallen from God's righteousness, image, and holiness, and not in the renewed state. And consider how that the Hebrews suffered the spoiling of their goods by the Hebrews [Acts 10:34], who were called Jews, as you may read in the epistle to the Hebrews; for ye read in few of the epistles, that the Gentiles suffered the spoiling of their goods, (or the christians by the Gentiles,) but mostly by the Jews, the great professors, as you do and have done in these days. Top
And consider how the witness hath been slain, and (the true church,) the woman fled into the wilderness, who was persecuted; and how she hath been fed there of God [Rev 12:6]; and how since that time the beast and dragon's worship hath been up, and the false prophet, and the whore, (the false church,) which hath ridden on the beast in the dragon's power, whom the people have worshipped; who hath caused all nations to drink of the whore's cup of fornication [Rev 17:2f] . Now you that have come to the end, and beyond all the worships of the beast, and after the worship of the dragon, who come now to fathom the whore (the false church) and the false prophets, and come to see the power, <262> and to be in it, that takes them and casts them alive into the lake of fire [Rev 19:20], (which hath been worshipped,) and burns the whore's flesh with fire [Rev 17:16]; which power gives them dominion over them all, and to see to the very apostles' days, what they were in, and what hath got up since then; for it is sixteen hundred years since the false prophets and antichrists came in, (therefore they may plead antiquity.) Now with the power of God ye may look what tricks they have played in the world, since the primitive times in the apostacy: but now is the bride coming up out of the wilderness, and the prophet is arisen and arising [John 7:52], and the everlasting gospel shall be, and is preached again to all nations, kindreds, tongues, and peoples [Rev 14:6], of them that dwell upon the earth; and the reapers are going forth to reap people down, and so up to God, and to bring them into the barn [Mat 13:30], and to gather the wheat into the garner [Mat 3:12]. And people shall come to worship God, that made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is therein, and the beast's worship, and dragon's worship, and the great whore's church is falling, (the true woman is coming up,) false prophets are falling, true prophets and true witnesses are rising and risen. Sing, triumph, and rejoice; glory in the highest [Luke 19:38]! trample, tread, and bow them before the mighty God: let the wicked bow before the gates of the righteous [Prov 14:19]. Sing and rejoice [Zech 2:10], the heaven of heavens praise the Lord! Now the dragon's worship, beast, false church, false prophet are taken, the old dragon cast into the lake of fire, (and with him the false prophets,) and the flesh of the whore burnt. Reap out, reap out, reap out, I say, (with the power of God,) ye reapers unto the Lord, for here is the day of harvest; for as the other falls, the day of harvest is known, a day of gathering; for it is that which hath inwardly ravened that hath scattered. For the inwardly raveners, and wolves in sheep's clothing [Mat 7:15], whose fruits have been briars and thorns, and thistles [Rev 7:16], are them which have made up the false church, the whore, the false prophets, and the beast's worship, and the dragon's worship out of the truth, which have made the world like a wilderness [Isa 14:17], overgrown with thistles, thorns, and briars, in which lodge the wolves and dragons [Isa 34:13]. The beginning of this ravening into this state was a matter of sixteen hundred years since, amongst whom is found the blood of the martyrs, prophets, and saints in the faith, and in the testimony of Jesus, shed in this dark night of apostacy, separation, degeneration, with all their compelling worships, inventions, laws, traditions, churches, rudiments [Col 2:8] to be observed, and cups for people to drink. In these, I say, and among these have the righteous suffered since the days of the apostles; and among them is the blood of the martyrs, and the prophets [Rev 16:6], and holy people of the royal seed found; and by them have they all suffered, and from amongst them will God fetch his royal seed with his own hand, and with his mighty power will he fetch it. Glory <263> over all to him! rejoice and sing praises, he is now triumphing gloriously [Exo 15:1], and bringing you over with his power, that ye might see to the beginning before man fell; and know the state of the Jews in the law, and the state of the christians in the end of the law, and the state of the apostatized pretended christians since the apostles' days, out of both law and gospel, how they have gotten up, and in what they have lived out of the life and power the apostles were in, and Christ Jesus, who is the first and the last [Rev 1:11], the top and corner-stone [Eph 2:20], who is over all felt, and lies heavy upon the transgressors, who is the rock, upon which the lambs leap and skip. Him feel in you all, then ye may all feel the first and the last, who destroys the devil and his works [Heb 2:14, 1 Jn 3:8], (which are imperfect,) whose works are persecution, and murder, and banishment, and cruelty, and imprisonment: ‘for the devil shall cast some into prison [Rev 2:10],’ saith John in the Revelations; and the devil was a murderer from the beginning, and a liar [John 8;44], whom Christ destroys, and his works, who was before he was, and remains when he is destroyed and gone, and his works. . . . Top
So the measuring line of righteousness [Isa 28:17] is in this known; . . . <264> . . . So wait to know every particular of yourselves, to be heirs of this; and know your portion, the power of God, the gospel fellowship, then are ye members one of another [Rom 12:5], and living stones, that build up the spiritual household [1 Pet 2:5]. And also know the cross of Christ, which is the power of God [1 Cor 1:18], which crucifies from the state in the fall and the apostacy; in that state, I say, that Adam and Eve, and all their sons and daughters are in, in the fall; where, in that state, they glory in the creatures, and in their shame [Phil 3:8], and in their inventions, or in their strength, wisdom, or riches. But glorying in the cross of Christ [Gal 6:14], the power of God, the glorying is in that which doth crucify from the state of Adam and Eve, and all their sons and daughters in the fall; and from this state all the apostate christians are since the apostles' days. . . . come into the same power that brings you up before the fall, and brings you to be gathered in the name of Jesus [Mat 18:20], which is above every name [Phil 2:9], and be gathered into the name of Jesus, by which salvation is brought; for there is no other name under heaven given, by which salvation is brought, but by the name of Jesus [Acts 4:12]. So, ye being gathered in the name which is above every name, and also in the name by which salvation is brought, and by no other name; in that wait, and meet, and keep together; so ye will feel the blessing of the Lord in you, and amongst you. So farewell.
And consider how the servants of the Lord, and his royal people, and <265> prophets, feared not flames, feared not dens of lions, or dragons, heeded not prisonments, bonds, banishments, whips, nor scourgings, nor spoiling of their goods, and their tortures; nor feared not their being sawed asunder, nor their stocks, their clubs, and staves, nor persecution [Heb 11:32-37]; but chose rather to suffer reproach with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season [Heb 11:25]. And how that reproaches, slanders, vilifying words they regarded not, but trampled upon such and said, the sufferings were not to be valued with the excellency and riches of grace [Eph 2:7], which they were made partakers of [Phil 1:7]. And the cry was, what shall separate us from the love of God, which we have in Christ Jesus? Shall death, shall famine, or sword, or persecution, or cold, or nakedness, or things present, or things to come, or heighth, or depth, or angels, or men, or principalities, or powers, separate us from the love of God? [Rom 8:38f] &c. For by the powers were all the national worships held up, as they are at this day, and the false prophets, the teachers, and the powers joined together then against them that were in the faith; by which faith they overcame and said, there was not any thing that was able to separate them from the love of God which they had in Christ Jesus. Mark! Christ the seed, who destroys the devil and his works [Heb 2:14, 1 Jn 3:8]; in which seed (Christ) ye come over the devil the author of all prisoning, persecuting, darkness, ungodliness, unrighteousness, unholiness; Christ who doth subdue all things to himself [Phil 3:21], whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and dominion an everlasting dominion over all dominions [Dan 4:3,34]. And in this kingdom and dominion have ye all peace, where no unrighteous thing enters. And so in this ye come to be a free people, in life, and power, and dominion. And there is no new thing under the sun [Eccl 1:9], for the wicked cry light is darkness yet, (as of old time,) and call good, evil; and evil, good [Isa 5:20]; and truth, error; and cry up the false teachers and prophets for the true; and false church and worship, and the feigned humility, for the true; and the blind zeal, for the good and true zeal, now as in former days. And so it is the old enemy of mankind, and his works, which the seed destroys, who reigns. Glory for ever to the Highest.