This is a ſhort
Of ſome of the
(For the Ttruths ſake) of
Katharine Evans & Sarah Chevers,
In the Inquiſition in the
Isle of Malta,
Who have ſuffered there above three years, by the Pope’s
Authority, there to be deteined till they dye. Which Relation
of their ſufferings is come from their own hands and
mouths, as doth appear by the following Treatiſe.
Theſe two Daughters of Abraham were paſſing to Alexandria
, and to Cilicia; And thus may that part of Chriſtendom
ſee their fruits, together with the Pope’s, and of what birth
they are; and that thoſe that are called Chriſtians are worſe
than Heathens: For they falling into their hands, ſhould have
been refreſhed by them with neceſſary things; but the proviſion
which the Inhabitants and Knights of Malta, (called
Chriſtians) provided for them, is the Inquiſition. Now it was
not ſo when Paul ſuffered ſhipwrack there among the barbarous
people; which is a manifeſt token they are not in the love of
God, whoſe fruits ſhew they are not in the true Spirit.
And this is to all fellow-brethren that are partakers with them in the Power of God
and have a feeling and fellowſhip with them in their ſufferings, that they might ſee
and know how it is with them, and what unkindneſs they find abroad among them
that profeſs themſelves Chriſtians.
London, Printed for Robert Wilson16621662.
An Epiſtle to the Readers.
Many there be among the Nations in the world, that in their haſte have unjuſtly condemned the innocent, guiltleſs and harmleſs people of the Lord of Hoſts (scornfully called Quakers) viz. That they are Papiſts, Jeſuits, and what elſe, adhering to the Whoriſh falſe Church of Rome; I ſay to ſuch on this wiſe, which is my advice as a man to his friend, to whom this may come, Be not haſty to judge before the time, as many do to their own hurt, guilt and condemnation, before they have a clear and right underſtanding of the things that differ from equity and truth, and ſo the nobility of the mind which ſhould weigh and paſs true ſentence of ſound and perfect judgment, the ſame being vailed with a haſty dark ſpirit of prejudice, or evil ſurmiſing, which gets up into the ſeat of enmity, and therein paſſeth ſentence of the pure way and things of God as evil, hereſie, and what elſe; and thus it comes to paſs, and indeed it cannot be otherwiſe with ſuch that have not their minds ſtaied and fixed in that which is perfect and true, and clear, and ſingle, as is the clear manifeſtation of the grace of life, which is the Light of the Lord Jeſus ſhining in the heart and conſcience of the Sons and Daughters of men; and the ſame Light of the Lord which lightneth the poor and deceitful man’s eyes, is the true meaſure and equal ballance, which all is to trie, and prove, and weigh words, thoughts, intents, ways, and actions, whether they be juſtifiable or condemnable; and hereby with the ſame meaſure of the true Spirit of God who is Light, is true ſentence to be paſſed accordingly: For if that which is perfectly true be meaſured with a falſe meaſure, or with an unequal Ballance, it doth appear ſo to all that behold the ſame with an evil eye, or meaſure that with the ſame meaſure; ſave onely to them that diſcern the meaſure, weight, or ballance; as for inſtance as to the thing natural, if a deceitful man with a falſe meaſure, A2 being iv A2v 806 being guided by a deceivable Spirit (al-be-it his eyes are inlightned with the Light of the Lord, which is true) if he Prov. 29. meaſure a piece of cloth to his Cuſtomer, with his deceitful meaſure, though the cloth be good, yet he not giving it its true meaſure, the ſimple hearted is thereby deceived, and knoweth it not till it be brought to a true meaſure, which doth anſwer the true principle, or Light of God in the conſcience to juſtification, as doth not the falſe, but contrariwiſe; wherefore its needful, and of abſolute concernment, for the mind of every man male and female, to be guided and exerciſed in the true manifeſtation of the Light of Jeſus in the conſcience; and ſo bleſſed is the man, the people, the family that brings their deeds to the Light, that they may be manifeſt that they are wrought in God who is Light, who is Truth; and ſo what is here following written and publiſhed is to be tried, and proved by the Witneſs of God in every Conſcience which is true, and will anſwer to the ſame things or words that ſprings forth from its own clear nature.
Therefore, when thou hast honeſtly read this throughout with a meek ſpirit of ſobriety and moderation that’s ſingle and pure, then with the ſame ſpirit of ſingleneſs, and of true diſcerning judge honeſtly, and ceaſe from haſtineſs in ſuch matters of Eternity, leaſt a place of Repentance become finally hid from thine eies, not to ſalvation, but contrariwiſe, which I deſire not, neither doth the Lord, whoſe ſervant a living and true Witneſs I am, for Him, his Truth and People, of theſe things and much more.
Wherefore let the Reader ſee hereby, how that the Lord hath choſen the fooliſh things of this life to confound the wiſe, and that the living God Eternal hath choſen the weak things, to confound and bring to nought the things that are mighty, ſubtil, and potent; yea, baſe things which are ſo deemed deſpiſable, and contemptible, yet behold God hath choſen them, and things that are not approvable in the ſight of the prudent of this world, even to bring to nought things that are: But may ſome ſay, Wherefore, or why doth the most High, Wiſe, Inviſible, Immortal God do thus? my anſwer is one and the ſame as the Apoſtle ſaith, viz. That no fleſh ſhould glory in his preſence, who of God is made in us Wiſdom, Righteouſneſs, Sanctification, and Redemption: And why ſhould it be accounted ſuch a fooliſh thing in the eyes of the wiſe men v A3r 807 men of this world, to ſee the wiſdom of God diſpenſed through a weak Veſſel? as is a free-born woman from above, a weaker Veſſel than that of the man.
Now tell me, oh man of underſtanding, What muſt not the Spirit of Chriſt, or the ſame that is begotten of God in the female, as well as in the male, what muſt not (I ſay) the ſame spirit of life from God ſpeak, but be limited in the weaker Veſſel, in the fooliſh Veſſel, in the Veſſel which is not eſteemed, but baſe, contemptible and deſpiſed in the eyes of lofty man that muſt be laid low, who excels in that wiſdom and knowledge which is not from above, but otherwiſe, brutiſh, and puffeth up the fleſhly mind that’s enmity to God, and is therefore to be confounded and moved backward, and ſlain upon the Croſs, which is the Power of God that crucifieth the luſts and inordinate affections of the fleſh, which thereby come to be ſilent before the Lord, who is that one and ſelf-ſame ſpirit that is quick and powerful; ſo that not any other ſpirit governs or rules over the members of the body, but that which created the body; and every Member, which is to have the ſupream authority and preheminence, as well in the female as in the male; and ſo he the Spirit of Truth that’s to guide into all truth; he, the man, is not he to ſpeak, viz. Chriſt in the male, the ſame in the female, where he is riſen and manifeſt as King, Prieſt and Prophet, a Guide, Leader and Commander in all equitable and juſt things which are truly honorable.
But the woman was in the tranſgreſſion againſt the Spirit; Fleſh luſteth againſt the Spirit, ſaith the Apoſtle; and the Woman (that’s in the tranſgreſſion) is to be under obedience, and to be in ſilence, to learn in ſilence, and to ask her Husband at home; but what if ſhe have a diſorderly, drunken Husband (and not Chriſt the man, the true Husband, the true Lord) how can he teach her, ſeeing the woman is to learn of her Husband in ſilence, and to be under obedience (and not to uſurp Authority over the man) as alſo ſaith the Law, which hath dominion over all that are under it in the tranſgreſſion; but the Spirit of Grace and Truth that’s poured upon ſons and daughters, teacheth us to deny the ſin, and guideth from the ſame, and ſo maketh free from its condemnation, and from under the Law, to be under the Grace and Truth that is in the one Seed Chriſt, in the Male Chriſt, in the Female, the quick808ning vi A3v 808 ning ſpirit, the Lord from Heaven; and ſo who are lead and guided by this, are not under the Law, which ſaith, the woman is not to uſurp Authority over the man, as alſo ſaith the able Miniſter of the Myſterie of the glory and riches of Eternity, which is Chriſt the fulneſs in his Saints, their hope of life and glory; but the woman is to be under obedience, as alſo ſaith the Law; yea, but they that are led by the Spirit, are not under the Law, ſo are the ſons of God manifeſt; yet under the Grace covered; the ſame Grace with which the Man-Child, the holy Child Jeſus was covered and filled with; the ſame, and no other but that which did and doth ſave the Saints from ſin, and ſo from under the Law, and its condemnation; and not onely ſo, but alſo the ſame Grace which bringeth ſalvation, and appeareth to all men, it teacheth them not onely to deny ungodlineſs and worldy luſts, but alſo to live ſoberly and righteouſly in this preſent world; and verily this Grace is in them which ſaves and juſtifieth them; and it’s not of themſelves, it is the gift of God.
And ſuch are the ſervants of the living and true God, that have their fruits, (and poſſeſs the ſame) unto holineſs; and not onely ſo, but the end of the ſame, which is the pure manifeſtation of the Eternal ſubſtance, to wit, everlaſting life, pure, clean power, which is the excellent Treaſure in the Earthen Veſſels, as ſaith the holy Scripture, 2 Cor. 4.
But Oh ye Congregations of the dead! ye gathered Churches of ſo many Names and Heads, to you ſounds my voice, ſaying, What have ye done? Oh! how guilty do ye appear before mine eye that’s ſingle (in the Lord’s Light) of deſpiſing propheſying, and quenching the tender Spirit of glory, which reſteth at this day in, and upon many ſons and daughters; and behold if ye can ſee how they do, and have propheſied in the Name of the Lord, and have fore-warned you of that which is juſtly come to paſs upon you, while many of you deſpiſed and wondered, in the days of haughtineſs, and its proſperity among you. But oh my ſoul, how haſt thou been wounded in me, whilſt I have travelled and mourned over you! And ſo you have been found deſpiſing that, and quenching that Spirit of Grace which teacheth the Saints in Light, and reproves for ſin, and teſtifieth againſt the World, and its deeds, becauſe they are evil.And vii A4r 809
And this ſame Spirit ſtrived long with you, and in you, and would have ariſen up in its Authority, Power and great glory from on high, had ye not preferred and exalted the Spirit of this World in it’s proper place in you, above the juſt and long ſuffering, which is but one and the ſame in male, and in female.
Oh! what have you done? Can any of you yet ſmite upon your thigh, and ſay ſo yet? if ye can, enquire, enquire ye, the Watchman’s voice is the ſame it was, and not otherwiſe, viz. Return, come; yea, return and come to the tender Spirit of holineſs, and of the gentleneſs of Chriſt, and his yoke of ſelf-denial, and the daily Croſs, they are the two great Ordinances which ye have left behind, and ſo the vail and the Darkneſs has covered you, but the true Israelites have Light in their dwellings, and their habitations is in the beſt of the Land of the living.
Wherefore my ſpirit ſaith, Return, come and hearken to the Lamb’s voice, and now ſee whether ye can follow him (or a ſtranger) whereſoever he goeth; that’s the true Prophet raiſed up like unto Moſes, and obey his voice which ſavoureth not of this world; for ſo his Kingdom and ſervants are not. Therefore beware, leſt your ſouls be cut off from the Land of the living, and ye periſh in the outward obſervations, (by which the Kingdom cometh not) among the Congregations of the dead, where ye are yet ſeeking the living; but I as a Brother (even Joſeph) tell you yet again, He is not there, but is ariſen from the dead, from death to life, who is the quickening Spirit, the Lord from Heaven, over the Earth, over all the Land of Ægypt, over the Land of darkneſs, the ſame Lord, the ſame Spirit which hath done excellent things, is exalted in the new Heaven, and in the new Earth, wherein dwelleth righteouſneſs; and let the Virgin-Daughter of Sion publiſh the ſame, even from henceforth to all generations, yea and my ſpirit it’s ready to ſay, Amen.
There was one that ſaw a little Stone cut out of the Mountain without hands, and he well retained his ſight ſo long until (in the Light of the living) he ſaw the ſame which was ſo little, wax ſo great, that it became an exceeding great Mountain.
Verily, the beloved City is manifeſt, ſet upon a holy Hill; it cannot be hid from them that ſee, the glory of God doth enlighten it, viii A4v 810 it, and the Lamb is the Light thereof, and his Light is like unto a ſtone moſt precious, clear as Chryſtal.
The Fountain is opened free; come down from on high, and thou ſhalt ſee if thou doſt thirſt for ſprings of Life. To the Light ſubmit thy mind, and ceaſe from ſtrife, in the ſame to behold the Bride, the Lamb’s Wife, from the falſe Church.
A Salutation to the whole Body of the Elect of God, whether gathered or ſcattered abroad upon the face of the Earth. And tender Greeting, with Information from the ſame ſuffering and long ſuffering Seed, whoſe Earthen Veſſels are held in the Bonds of ſtrait Captivity, under the Pope’s dark and cruel Authority, in his Inquiſition in the Iſland of Malta, for the Word of Life, which is the living Teſtimony of Jeſus, and the truth of his Innocency which they hold and ſtand faſt to, and in the ſame; having already ſuffered more then three years in the ſaid Confinement, to the preſent 1661-1212th month of the year accounted 1661 of the ſame I bear Record alſo, and affirm to the Truth, of which I am a Servant, and living Witneſs,
O Yee Eternal and Bleſſed ones, whoſe dwelling is on high, in the fulneſs of all Beauty and Brightneſs, Glory and everlaſting Joy, Happineſs and Peace for evermore; We who are poor ſufferers for the Seed of God, in the Covenant of Light, Life, and Truth, do dearly ſalute and imbrace you all, according to our meaſures, Bleſſing and honour and Glory be given to our Lord God for ever, of all who know him, who hath counted us worthy, and hath choſen us among his faithfull ones, to bear his name and to witneſs forth his truth, before the high and mighty men of the earth, and to fight the Lords battle with his ſpirituall weapons, to the breaking down of ſtrong holds, high lofty looks and vain imaginations, and ſpirituall wickedneſs in high places.
The Lord did give us a proſperous journey hither, and when we came to Legorne, we were refreſhed with friends [who were there before us] and they did get a paſſage for us (and lodging) but as ſoon as we heard of the Veſſel, we did feel our ſervice. So we went into the City in the living B power 2 B1v 812 2 power of the Lord, and there were many tender hearts did viſit us, to their comfort, and our joy: The little time we ſtaid there we gave ſome of our Books, and one Paper: ſo journying towards Alexandria, the Captain told us that Malta was in the way, and he muſt put in there a ſmall time. But before we came there, our burthen was ſo heavy, that I was made to cry out (ſaying,) Oh we have a dreadfull cup to drink at that place! Oh how am I ſtraitned till it be Accompliſhed!
And when we came there, the walls of the City were full of people; ſome ſtood on the top of the walls, as if ſomething had troubled them: before we came there we ſtood upon the deck of the ſhip, and I looked upon them, & ſaid in my heart, Shall yee destroy us? If we give up to the Lord, then he is ſufficient to deliver us out of their hands; but if we diſobey our God, all thoſe could not deliver us out of his hand: So all fear of man was taken from us. The Engliſh Conſul came abord the ſhip (as the Captain ſaid) but we did not ſee him, and invited us to his Houſe, it was the ſeventh or laſt day of the week: The next morning being moved of the Lord we went a-ſhore, and the Conſul met us, and we gave him a paper, who ſent us to his Houſe, with his Servant; and when we came there at the preſent we well were entertained (like Princes) their Neighbours and Kinsfolk came in, and ſome Jeſuits, and we gave them Books, they read a little, and laid them down, they were too hot; we declared our meſſage to them in the Name of the Lord, and we gave ſome Books in the Street, ſo they were all ſet on work: Away went the Friers to the King (or Supreme in the Iſland) and he would not meddle with us, but ſaid, we were honeſt women, we might go about our buſineſs, and that night we went a-bord the Ship again, the Conſul was troubled, for their ſnare was laid, and we felt it; being moved of the Lord we went in again the next day, and the Conſul having a ſiſter in the Nunnery, deſired us to go there, that ſhe might ſee us; and we went to them, and gave them a book, then to the Conſuls we returned again, and ſitting to wait to know the mind of the Lord, what he would have us to do, he ſaid we muſt give in the great Paper; and if we would go to ſave our life, we ſhould lose it.
Here followeth a Copy of ſome more words which they had written before the former was given forth.
A True Declaration concerning the Lord’s love to us in all our Voyage: We were at Sea, betwen London and Plymouth, many Weeks, and one day we had ſome trials; and between Plymouth and Legorn we were 31. days, and we had many trials and ſtorms within and without; but the Lord did deliver us out of all: And when we came to Legorn, with the reſt of our friends, we went into the Town after we had product, and ſtaid there many dayes, where we had ſervice every day; for all ſorts of people came unto us, but no man did offer to hurt us, yet we gave them Books and having got paſſage in a Dutch ſhip we ſayled towards Cyprus, intending to goe to Alexandria, but the Lord had appointed ſomthing for us to do by the way, as he did make it manifeſt to us, as I did ſpeak, for the Maſter of the ſhip had no buſineſs in the place; but being in company with another ſhip which had ſome buſineſs at the City of Malta, (in the Iſland of Malta where Paul ſuffered ſhipwrack) and being in the Harbour, on the firſt day of the Week, we being moved of the Lord, went into the Town, and the Engliſh Conſul met us on the ſhore, and asked us concerning our coming, and we told him truth, and gave him ſome Books, and a Paper, and he told us there was an Inquiſition, and he kindly entreated us to go to his houſe, and ſaid all that he had was at our ſervice while we were there. And in the fear and dread of the Lord we went, and there came many to ſee us, and we call’d them to repentance, and many of them were tender; but the whole City is given to Idolatry. And we went a ſhip-board that night; and the next day we being moved to go into the City again, dared not to flie the croſs, but in obedience went, deſiring the will of God to be done. And when we came to the Governor, he told us that he had a Siſter in the Nunnary did deſire to ſee us if we were free; and in the fear of God we went, and talked with them, and gave them a Book, and one of their Prieſts was with us (at the Nunnery) and had us into their place of Worſhip, and ſome would have us bow to the high Altar, which we did deny; and having a great burthen, we B2 went 4 B2v 814 4 went to the Conſul again, and were waiting upon the Lord what to do, that we might know.
And the Inquiſitors ſent for us, and when we came before them, they asked our Names, and the Names of our Husbands, and the Names of our Fathers and Mothers, and how many children we had; and they asked us, Wherefore we came into that Countrey? And we told them, We were the Servants of the living God, and were moved to come and call them to repentance; and many other queſtions, and they went away, but commanded that we should be ſtaid there. And the next day they came again, and called for us, and we came; but they would examine us apart, and called Sarah, and they asked, Whether ſhe was a true Catholick? She ſaid, that ſhe was a true Chriſtian that worſhippeth God in ſpirit and in truth; and they proffered her the Crucifix, and would have had her ſware that ſhe would ſpeak the truth; and ſhe ſaid, ſhe ſhould ſpeak the truth, but ſhe would not ſwear, for Chriſt commanded her not to ſwear, ſaying, Swear not at all: And the Engliſh Consul perſwaded her with much entreating to ſwear, ſaying, None ſhould do her any harm: But ſhe denied; and they took ſome Books from her, and would have had her ſwear by them, but ſhe would not: And they asked, Wherefore ſhe brought the Books? And ſhe ſaid, Becauſe we could not ſpeak their Language, and they might know wherefore we came; and they asked of her, what George Fox was; and ſhe ſaid, he was a Miniſter. And they asked, wherefore ſhe came thither? She said, To do the Will of God, as ſhe was moved of the Lord. And they asked, how the Lord did appear unto her? And ſhe ſaid, by his Spirit. And they asked, where ſhe was when the Lord appeared unto her? and ſhe ſaid, upon the way. And they asked, whether ſhe did ſee his Preſence, and hear his Voice? And ſhe ſaid, ſhe did hear his Voice, and ſaw his Preſence; and they asked, What he ſaid to her? and ſhe ſaid, the Lord told her, ſhe muſt go over the Seas to do his Will; and then they asked, how ſhe knew it was the Lord? and ſhe ſaid, he bid her go, and his living preſence ſhould go with her, and he was faithful that had promiſed, for ſhe did feel his living preſence; and ſo they went away.
Two dayes after they came again, and called for me, and offered me the Crucifix, and told me the Magiſtrate commanded me to ſwear 5 B3r 815 5 ſwear that I would ſpeak the truth. And I told them that I ſhould ſpeak the truth, for I was a Witneſs for God; but I ſhould not ſwear; for a greater than the Magiſtrate, ſaith, Swear not at all, but let your yea be yea, and your nay be nay, for whatſoever is more, cometh of evil. But ſaid they, You muſt obey the Juſtice, and he commands you to ſwear. I ſaid, I ſhould obey Juſtice, but if I ſhould ſwear, I ſhould do an unjuſt thing; for (the juſt) Chriſt ſaid, Swear not at all. And they asked me, Whether I did own that Chriſt which dyed at Jeruſalem? I answered, We owned the ſame Chriſt, and no other, he is the ſame yeſterday, to day, and for ever.
And they asked me; What I would do at Jeruſalem? I ſaid I did not know that I ſhould go there, but I ſhould go to Alexandria; and they ſaid, What to do? and I ſaid, to do the Will of God; and if the Lord did open my mouth, I ſhould call them to repentance, and declare to them the day of the Lord, and direct their minds from darkneſs to Light. Then they asked me, Whether I did tremble when I did preach? and I told them, I did tremble when the power of the Lord was upon me. And they asked, Whether I did ſee the Lord with my eyes? I ſaid, God was a Spirit, and he was ſpiritually diſcerned.
That day that we were had from the Engliſh Conſuls to the Inquiſition, the Conſul’s Wife brought us meat to eat, and as ſhe paſt by me, I was ſmote with an Arrow to the heart, and I heard a voice, ſaying, It is finiſhed, ſhe hath obtained her purpoſe. I did not taſte of her meat, but went aſide, and wept bitterly. The Conſul did affirm to us the night before, that there was no ſuch thing (as to enſnare us) intended; but it was in us as fire, and our ſouls were heavy even unto death; for many dayes before we ſaw in a Viſion of our going there, (to priſon) and we ſaid Pilate would do the Jews a pleaſure, and waſh his hands in innocency. He required a ſign of me if we were the Meſſengers of God; and the Lord gave me a ſign for him, that ſtuck by him while he lived. The ſame day it was, he called me, and told me the Inquiſition had ſent for us, and they had Papers from Rome, and he did hope we ſhould be ſet free; which was a lye: For he knew there was a room prepared for us. And there came a man with a black Rod, and the Chancellor, and the Conſul, and had us before their Lord Inquiſitor, and he asked us, Whether we had changed our minds yet? We ſaid 6 B3v 816 6 ſaid, Nay, we ſhould not change from the truth. He asked, What new Light we talkt of? We ſaid, no new Light, but the ſame the Prophets and Apoſtles bare teſtimony to. Then he ſaid How came this Light to be loſt ever ſince the primitive times? We ſaid, it was not loſt, men had it ſtill (in them) but they did not know it, by reaſon that the night of Apoſtacy had, and hath overſpread the Nations, Then he ſaid, If we would change our minds, and do as they would have us to do, we ſhould ſay ſo, or elſe they would uſe us as they pleaſed. We ſaid, The Will of the Lord be done. And he aroſe up, and went his way with the Conſul, and left us there. And the man with the black Rod, and the Keeper, took us, and put us into an inner Room in the Inquiſition, which had but two little holes in it for light or air; but the glory of the Lord did ſhine round about us.
After the Conſul came with tears in his eyes, and ſaid he was as ſorry as for his own fleſh; but there was ſome hopes in time; and ſo he went away but never had peace while he lived. He would have given up the thirty pieces of ſilver again, but it would not be received; the Witneſs was riſen much in him, but ſlaviſh fear poſſest him. This was upon the ſixt day of the Week, and our ſtomacks were taken away from all meat.
The next ſecond day came a Magiſtrate, two Fryars, and the man with the black Rod, and a Scribe, and the Keeper, to the Inquiſition, to ſit upon Judgement, and examined us apart concerning our faith in Chriſt. The Magiſtrate would have had us to ſwear, and we anſwered, No; Chriſt ſaid, Swear not at all; and ſo ſaid James the Apoſtle. He asked, if we would ſpeak truth? We ſaid, yea. He asked, Whether we did believe the Creed? We said, We did believe in God, and in Jeſus Chriſt, which was born of the Virgin Mary, and ſuffered at Jeruſalem under Pilate, and aroſe again from the dead the third day, and aſcended to his Father, and ſhal come to judgement, to judge both quick and dead. He asked, How we did believe the Reſurrection? We anſwered, We did believe that the juſt and the unjuſt ſhould ariſe, according to the Scriptures. He ſaid, Do you believe in the Saints, and pray to them? We ſaid, We did believe the Communion of Saints; but we did not pray to them, but to God onely, in the Name of Jeſus Chriſt. He asked, Whether we did believe in the Catholick Church? We ſaid, We did believe 7 B4r 817 7 believe the true Church of Chriſt; but the Word Catholick we have not read in Scripture. He asked, if we believed a Purgatory? We ſaid, No; but a Heaven and a Hell. The Fryar ſaid, We were commanded to pray for the dead; for thoſe that were in Heaven had no need; and they that were in Hell there is no redemption; therefore there muſt be a Purgatory. He asked, if we believed their holy Sacrament? We ſaid, We never read (the Word) Sacrament in Scripture. The Fryar replied, Where we did read in our Bibles Sanctification, it was Sacrament in theirs. He ſaid, Their holy Sacrament was Bread and Wine, which they converted into the Fleſh and Blood of Chriſt by the virtue of Chriſt. We ſaid, they did work Miracles then, for Chriſt’s virtue is the ſame as it was when he turned Water into Wine at the Marriage in Canaan. He ſaid, If we did not eat the fleſh, and drink the blood of the Son of God, we had no life in us. We ſaid, the Fleſh and Blood of Chriſt is ſpiritual, and we do feed upon it daily; for that which is begotten of God in us, can no more live without ſpiritual food, than our temporal bodies can without temporal food. He ſaid, that we did never hear Maſſe. We ſaid, We did hear the voice of Chriſt, he onely had the words of eternal life, and that was ſufficent for us. He ſaid, We were Hereticks and Heathens. We ſaid, they were Hereticks that lived in ſin and wickedneſs, and ſuch were Heathens that knew not God. He asked about our Meetings in England? And we told them the truth to their amazement. And they asked, Who was the Head of our Church? We ſaid, Chriſt. And they asked, What George Fox is. And we ſaid, He is a Miniſter of Chriſt. They asked, Whether he ſont us? We ſaid, No, the Lord did move us to come. The Fryar ſaid We were deceived, and had not the faith; but we had all virtues. We ſaid, that faith was the ground from whence virtues do proceed. They ſaid, If we would take their holy Sacrament, we might have our liberty, or elſe the Pope would not leave us for millions of Gold, but we ſhould loſe our ſouls and our bodies too. We ſaid, the Lord had provided for our ſouls, and our bodies were freely given up to ſerve the Lord. They askt us, if we did not believe Marriage was a Sacrament? We ſaid, it was an Ordinance of God. They ask’t us, if we did believe men could forgive ſins? We ſaid None could forgive ſins but God onely. They brought us that Scripture, Whoſe ſins ye remit in earth, ſhall be remitted in heaven. We ſaid, All Power was God’s, and he could 8 B4v 818 8 could givre it to whom he would (that were born of the Eternal Spirit, and guided by the ſame; ſuch have power to do the Fathers Will, as I anſwered a Fryar alſo in the City of Naples) and they were ſilent, the Power greatly working. We asked them wherein we had wronged them, that we ſhould be kept Priſoners all dayes of our lives, and ſaid, Our innocent blood would be required at their hands.
The Fryar ſaid, He would take our blood upon him, and our Journey into Turky too. We told him, the time would come he would find he had enough upon him without it. They ſaid, The Popes was Chriſt’s Vicar, and we were of his Church, and what he did, was for the good of our ſouls. We anſwered, The Lord had not committed the charge of our ſouls to the Pope, nor to them; for he had taken them into his own poſſeſſion, glory was to his Name for ever. They ſaid, We muſt be obedient. We ſaid, We were (obedient) to the Government of Chriſt’s Spirit. The Fryar ſaid, None had the true Light but the Catholicks; the Light that we had, was the Spirit of the Devil. We ſaid, Wo to him that calleth Jeſus accurſed: Can the Devil give power over ſin and iniquity? then he would deſtroy his own Kingdom. He ſaid, We were laught at, and mockt at of every one. We ſaid, What did become of the mockers? It was no matter. He ſaid, We did run about to preach, and had not the true Faith. We ſaid, the true Faith is held in a pure Conſcience void of offence towards God and man; and we had the true Faith. And he ſaid, There was but one Faith, either theirs or ours; and askt us which it was? We ſaid, Every one had the true Faith, that did believe in God, and in Jeſus whom he had ſent but they that ſay they do believe, and do not keep his commandments, are lyars, and the truth is not in them. He ſaid it was true; but he did thirſt daily for our blood, becauſe we would not turn, and urged us much about our Faith and Sacrament, to bring us under their Law; but the Lord preſerved us.
They ſaid, It was impoſſible we could live long in that hot room. So the next Week-day they ſate in Council; but oh how the ſwelling Sea did rage, and the proud waves did foam even unto the clouds of Heaven, and Proclamation was made at the Priſon-Gate, we did not know the words, but the fire of the Lord flamed againſt it, K. my life was ſmitten, and I was in a very great agony, ſo that 9 C1r 819 9 ſweat was as drops of blood, and the righteous one was laid into a Sepulcher, and a great ſtone was roll’d to the door; but the Propheſie was, that he ſhould ariſe again the third day, which was fulfilled. But the next day they came to ſit upon Judgement again, but I ſay, in the true Judgement they ſate not, but upon it they got up unjuſtly above the righteous, and upon the ſame they ſate; a child of Wiſdom may underſtand and they brought many Propoſitions written in a paper, but the Fryar would ſuffer the Magiſtrate to propound but few to us, for fear the Light would break forth; but they askt how many friends of ours were gone forth in the Miniſtry, and into what parts. We told them what we did know. They ſaid, all that came where the Pope had any thing to do, ſhould never go back again. We ſaid, the Lord was as ſufficient for us, as he was for the children in the fiery Furnace, and our truſt was in God. They ſaid, we were but few, and had been but a little while, and they were many Countreys, and had ſtood many hundred years, and wrought many Miracles, and we had none. We ſaid, we had thouſands at our Meetings, but none (of us) dare ſpeak a word, but as they are eternally moved of the Lord; and we had Miracles, the Blind receive their ſight, the Deaf do hear, and the Dumb do ſpeak, the Poor do receive the Goſpel, the Lame do walk, and the Dead are raiſed. He asked, Why I lookt ſo, whether my Spirit was weak? I said, Nay my body was weak, becauſe I eat no meat, it was in their Lent He offered me a Licenſe to eat fleſh. I ſaid, I could not eat any thing at all. The terrors of death were ſtrongly upon me; but three nights after, the Lord ſaid unto me, about the 11th. hour, Ariſe, and put on your Clothes; I ſaid, When wilt thou come Lord? He ſaid, Whether at midnight; or at Cock-crow, do thou watch. My Friend and I aroſe, and the Lord ſaid, Go ſtand at the Door. And we ſtood at the door in the power of the Lord, I did ſcarce know whether I was in the body, or out of the body; and about the 12th. hour there came many to the Priſon-Gate; We heard the Keys, and looked when they would come in: They ran to and fro till the 4th. hour; the Lord ſaid, he had ſmote them with blindneſs, they could not find the way. And we went to bed, there I lay night and day for 12. days together, faſting and ſweating, that my bed was wet, and great was our affliction.C The 10 C1v 820 10
The tenth day of my faſt there came two Fryars, the Chancellor, the man with the black Rod, and a Phyſician, and the Keeper; and the Fryar commanded my dear Friend to go out of the room, and he came and pull’d my hand out of the bed, and ſaid, Is the Devil ſo great in you, that you cannot ſpeak? I ſaid, Depart from me thou worker of iniquity, I know thee not; the Power of the Lord is upon me, and thou call’ſt him Devil. He took his Crucifix to ſtrike me in the mouth; and I ſaid, Look here! and I asked him, Whether it were that Croſs which crucified Paul to the World, and the World unto him? And he ſaid, it was. I denied him, and ſaid, the Lord had made me a Witneſs for himſelf againſt all workers of iniquity. He bid me be obedient, and went to ſtrike me: I ſaid, Wilt thou ſtrike me? He said, he would. I ſaid, Thou art out of the Apoſtles Doctrine, they were no ſtrikers; I deny thee to be any of them who went in the Name of the Lord. He ſaid, he had brought me a Phyſician in charity. I ſaid, the Lord was my Phyſician, and my ſaving-health. He ſaid I ſhould be whipt, and quartered, and burnt that night in Malta, and my Mate too: wherefore did we come to teach them? I told him I did not fear, the Lord was on our ſide, and he had no power but what he had received; and if he did not uſe it to the ſame end the Lord gave it him, the Lord would judge him. And they were all ſmitten as dead men, and went away.
And as ſoon as they were gone, the Lord ſaid unto me, The last Enemy that ſhall be deſtroyed, is Death; and the Life aroſe over Death, and I glorified God. The Fryar went to my friend, and told her, I called him worker of iniquity. Did ſhe, said Sarah? Art thou without ſin? He ſaid he was; Then ſhe hath wronged thee. But I ſay, the wise Reader may judge: For between the eighth and ninth hour in the evening, he ſent a Drum to proclaim at the Priſon-Gate; We know not what it was, but the fire of the Lord conſumed it. And about the fourth hour in the morning they were coming with a Drum and Guns; and the Lord ſaid unto me, Ariſe out of thy Grave-Clothes: And we aroſe; and they came up to the Gate to devour us in a moment. But the Lord lifted up his Standard with his own Spirit (of Might) and made them to retreat, and they fled as duſt before the Wind praiſes and honour be given to our God for ever. I went to bed again, and 11 C2r 821 11 and the Lord said unto me, Herod will ſeek the yong childes life to deſtroy it yet again; and great was my affliction; ſo that my dear fellow and labourer in the Work of God, did look every hour when I ſhould depart the body for many days together, and we did look every hour when we ſhould be brought to the ſtake day and night, for ſeveral weeks, and Iſaac was freely offered up. But the Lord ſaid, he had provided a Ram in the Buſh. Afterwards the Fryer came again with his Phyſician; I told him, that I could not take any thing, unleſs I was moved of the Lord. He ſaid, we muſt never come forth of that Room while we lived, and we might thank God and him it was no worſe, for it was like to be worſe. We ſaid, if we had died, we had died as innocent as ever did ſervants of the Lord. He ſaid, it was well we were innoent. They did (alſo) look ſtill when I would dye.
The Fryer bid my friend take notice what torment I would be in at the houre of Death, thouſands of Devils (he ſaid) would fetch my ſoule to Hell. She ſaid, ſhe did not fear any ſuch thing.
And he asked if I did not think it expedient for the Elders of the Church to pray over the ſick? I ſaid, yea, ſuch as were eternally moved of the Spirit of the Lord. He fell down of his knees and did howle, and wiſh bitter wiſhes upon himſelf if he had not the true faith; but we denied him. The Phyſitian was in a great rage at Sarah, becauſe ſhe could not bow to him, but to God onely.
The laſt day of my faſt I began to be a hungry, but was afraid to eat, the enemy was ſo ſtrong; but the Lord ſaid unto me, If thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirſt, give him drink. in ſo doing thou ſhalt heap coales of fire upon his head; he not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good. I did eat, and was refreſhed, and glorified God; and in the midſt of our extremity the Lord ſent his holy Angels to comfort us, ſo that we rejoiced and magnified God; and in the time of our great trial, the Sun and Earth did mourn viſibly three dayes, and the horror of death and pains of Hell was upon me: the Sun was darkned, the Moon was turned into Blood, and the Stars did fall from heaven, and there was great tribulation ten dayes, ſuch as never was from the beginning of the world; C2 and 12 C2v 822 12 and then did I ſee the Son of man coming in the Clouds, with power and great glory, triumphing over his enemies; the Heavens were on fire, and the Elements did melt with fervent heat, and the Trumpet ſounded out of Sion, and an Allarum was ſtruck up in Jeruſalem, and all the Enemies of God were called to the great day of Battle of the Lord, And I ſaw a great wonder in Heaven, the Woman cloathed with the Sun, and had the Moon under her feet, and a Crown of 12. Stars upon her head, and ſhe travelled in pain ready to be delivered of a Man-child, and there was a great Dragon ſtood ready to devour the Man-child as ſoon as it was born; and there was given to the Woman two Wings of a great Eagle to carry her into the deſert, where ſhe ſhould be nouriſhed for a time, times, and half a time; and the Dragon caſt a Flood out of his mouth, &c; And I ſaw War in Heaven, Michael and his Angels againſt the Dragon and his Angels, and the Lamb and his army did overcome them; and there was a Trumpet ſounded in Heaven, and I heard a voice ſaying to me, The City is divided into three parts; and I heard another Trumpet ſounding, and I looked and ſaw an Angel go down into a great pool of water, and I heard a voice ſaying unto me, Whosoever goeth down next after the troubling of the Waters, ſhall be healed of whatſoever Diseaſe he hath. And I heard another Trumpet ſounding, and I heard a voice, ſaying, Babylon is fallen, is fallen, Babylon the great is fallen. And I looked, and saw the ſmoke of her torment, how it did aſcend; and I heard another Trumpet ſounding, and I heard a voice ſaying, Rejoice and be exceeding glad, for great is your reward in heaven; for he that is mighty hath magnified you, and holy is his Name, and from henceforth all generations ſhall call you bleſsed: And I heard another trumpet ſounding in Heaven, and I heard a voice ſaying unto me, Behold! and I looked, and I saw Pharoah and his Hoſt purſuing the Children of Iſrael, and he and his Hoſt were drowned in the Sea.
Dear Friends and People, whatſoever I have written, it’s not becauſe it is recorded in the Scripture, or that I have heard of ſuch things; but in obedience to the Lord I have written the things which I did hear, ſee, taſted and handled of the good Word 13 C3r 823 13 Word of God, to the praiſe of his Name for ever.
And all this time my dear Siſter in Chriſt Jeſus was in as great affliction as I (in a manner) to ſee my ſtrong travel night and day; yet ſhe was kept in the patience, and would willingly have given me up to death, that I might have been at reſt; yet ſhe would have been left in as great danger, wo and miſery, as ever was any poor captive for the Lord’s truth; for they did work night and day with their divinations, inchantments and temptations, thinking thereby to bring us under their power; but the Lord prevented them every way, ſo that great was their rage, and they came often with their Phyſician, and ſaid it was in charity; I askt them whether they did keep us in that hot room to kill us, and bring us a Phyſician to make us alive.
The Fryar ſaid, the Inquiſitor would loſe his head if he ſhould take us thence; and it was better to keep us there, than to kill us.
The Room was ſo hot and ſo cloſe, that we were fain to riſe often out of our bed, and lie down at a chink of their door for air to fetch breath; and with the fire within, and the heat without, our skin was like ſheeps Leather, and the hair did fall off our heads, and we did fail often; our afflictions and burthens were ſo great, that when it was day we wiſhed for night; and when it was night we wiſhed for day; we ſought death, but could not find it; We deſired to die, but death fled from us; We did eat our bread weeping, and mingled our drink with our tears. We did write to the Inquiſitor, and laid before him our innocency, and our faithfulneſs, in giving our teſtimony for the Lord amongſt them; and I told him, if it were our blood they did thirſt after, they might take it any other way, as well as to ſmother us up in that hot room. So he ſent the Fryar, and he took away our Inkhorns, (they had our Bibles before) We asked why they took away our goods? They ſaid, it was all theirs, and our lives too, if they would. We asked, how we had forfeited our lives unto them; they ſaid, For bringing Books and Papers. We ſaid, if there were any thing in them that was not true, they might write againſt it. They ſaid, they did ſcorn to write to fools and aſſes that did not know true Latine. And they told us, the Inquiſitor wou’d have us ſeparated, becauſe I was weak, and I ſhould go into a cooler room; but Sarah ſhould abide there. I took her by the arm, and ſaid, The Lord hath joined us to824gether 14 C3v 824 14 gether, and wo be to them that ſhould part us. I ſaid, I rather choſe to dye there with my friend, than to part from her. He was ſmitten, and went away, and came no more in five weeks, and the door was not opened in that time. Then they came again to part us; but I was ſick, and broken out from head to foot. They ſent for a Doctor, and he ſaid, We muſt have air, or elſe we must dye. So the Lord compelled them to go to the Inquiſitor, & he gave order for the door to be ſet open ſix hours in a day; they did not part us till ten Weeks after: But oh the dark clouds and the ſharp ſhowers the Lord did carry us through! Death it ſelf had been better than to have parted in that place. They ſaid, we corrupted each other, and that they thought when we were parted, we would have bowed to them. But they found we were more ſtronger afterwards than we were before; the Lord our God did fit us for every condition. They came and brought a Scourge of ſmall Hemp, and asked us, if we would have any of it. They ſaid, they did whip themſelves till the blood did come. We ſaid, that could not reach the Devil, he ſate upon the heart. They ſaid, All the men and women of Malta were for us, if we would be Catholicks, for there would be none like unto us. We ſaid, the Lord had changed us into that which changed not. They ſaid all their holy women did pray for us, and we ſhould be honored of all the world if we would turn. We ſaid, we were of God, and the whole world did lye in wickedneſs; and we denied the honor of the World, and the glory too. They ſaid, We ſhould be honored of God too, but now we were hated of all. We ſaid, it is an evident token whoſe ſervants we are; the ſervant is not greater than the Lord, and that Scripture was fulfilled which ſaith, All this will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worſhip me.
Upon a firſt day of the Week, we were faſting and waiting upon the Lord till the ſecond hour (after mid-day) and the Fryars came and commanded us in the Name of the Lord to kneel down with them to prayer. We ſaid, we could not pray but as we were moved of the Lord. They commanded us the ſecond time. Then they kneeled down by our bedſide, and prayed, and when they had done, they ſaid, they had tryed our ſpirits, now they knew what ſpirit we were of. We told told them, they could not know our ſpirit, unleſs their minds were turned to the Light of the Lord Jeſus in their Conſciences. The Engliſh Fryar was wrath, and ſhew825ed 15 C4r 825 15 ed us his Crucifix, and bid us loooklook there . We ſaid, the Lord ſaith, Thou ſhalt not make to thy ſelf the likeneſs of any thing that is in heaven above, or in the earth beneath, nor in the water under the earth; thou ſhalt not bow to them nor worſhip them, but I the Lord thy God only. He was ſo mad, he called for the irons to chain Sarah, becauſe ſhe ſpake ſo boldly to him: She bowed her head, and ſaid to him, Not onely my feet, but my hands and neck alſo for the Teſtimony of Jeſus. His wrath was ſoon appeaſed, and he ſaid, He would do us any good he cou’d; he did ſee what we did was not in malice, the power had broken him down for that preſent; they came to us often, ſaying, If you would do but a little, you ſhould be ſet at liberty; but you will do nothing at all, but are againſt every thing. We ſaid, We are againſt nothing that is of God, but would do any thing that might make for God’s glory.
Many did think we ſhould not have been heard nor ſeen after we were in the Inquiſition, but the Lord did work wonderfully for us and his Truth: For they new built the Inquiſition,, and there were many Labourers for a year and a half, and the great men came to ſee the building; and we were carried forth with great power to declare in the Name of the Lord Jeſus, not fearing the face of man; the Lord was our ſtrength. But behold they threatned us with Irons and Halters, for preaching the Light ſo boldly, and they ſaid, None ought to preach but Prelates to a Biſhop, (as they uſe to ſay in England.) Now their Lord Inquiſitor (ſo called) and the Magiſtrates were kept moderate towards us, and gave order, we ſhould have Ink and Paper to write to England. But we were hindered ſtill; and we do believe they would have ſet us at liberty, had it not been for the Fryars; it was they that wrought againſt us ſtill to the Pope and to the Inquiſitor; and we told them ſo. They ſought three quarters of a year to part us, before they could bring it to paſs; and when they did part us, they prepared a bed for Sarah, and their own Catholicks lay upon the boards, that had not beds of their own. When we were parted, the Lord would not ſuffer me to keep any money, I knew not the mind of God in it. Their Fryars came and ſaid, We ſhould never ſee one anothers faces again, but the Inquiſitor ſhould ſend me my food. But the Lord would not ſuffer him to ſend it. Sarah did ſend me ſuch as ſhe could get neare three Weeks: then the Fryar came and askt me, what did I want? I ſaid, one to waſh my Linnen 16 C4v 826 16 Linnen, and ſomething hot to eat; I was weak. He ſent to Sarah to know if ſhe would do it for me. She ſaid ſhe would. And by that means we did hear of each other every day. The Fryar said. You may free your ſelf of miſery when you will; you may make your ſelf a Catholick, and have your freedom to go where you will. I told him I might make my ſelf a Catholick, and have a name that I did live, when I was dead, and ſaid, he had Catholicks enough already; he ſhould bring ſome of them to the Light in their Conſciences, that they might ſtand in awe, and ſin not. He ſaid, He would loſe one of his fingers if we would be Catholicks. I ſaid, it was Babylon that was built with blood, Sion was redeemed through Judgment. They would have had me to a Picture ſet at my beds head for a repreſentation. I askt them if they did think I did lack a Calf to worſhip? And whether they did not walk by the Rule of Scripture? The Fryar ſaid, They did, but they had traditions too I ſaid, if their traditions did derogate or diſcent from the fundamentals of Chriſt’s Doctrine, the Prophets and Apoſtles, I denied them in the Name of the Lord. He ſaid, they did not. I askt him where they had their Rule to burn them that could not join with them for Conſence? He ſaid, St. Paul did worſe, he gave them to the Devil, and that they did judge all damned that were not of their Faith. And he askt whether we did judge them ſo? I said No, We had otherwiſe learned Chriſt. I askt him why they did bind that which the Lord did not bind? and ſet tyes; chains and limits, where the Lord did not? as in meats and drinks, or in reſpect of dayes or times, which the Apoſtle called beggarly Elements, and rudiments of the w orld, and forbidding to marry, (a Doctrine of Devils ſaid I.) He could not tell what to ſay, but told me, That Saint Peter was the Pope of Rome, and did build an Altar there; and the Pope was his Succeſſor, and he could do what he would. I denied that, and ſaid, We never read any ſuch thing in Scripture; for Peter Chriſt’s Apoſtle had not money to build Altars; he himſelf did offer Sacrifice upon the Altars made without hands. And he ſaid, We were but a few, and riſen up but late, and they were many, and had ſtood fourteen hundred years, and God was a lyar if they had not the true faith; for he had confirmed it to them by a thouſand miracles. I ſaid, the few number, and the little Flock is Chriſt’s Flock. He askt if we were? then all the World, ſaid he. I ſaid, our faith was 17 D1r 827 17 was from the beginning. Abel was of our Church, and the world by wiſdom did not know God. He went to Sarah with the ſame temptation, and ſhe told him alſo, that Abel was of our Church. He ſaid Abel was a Catholick, and Cain and Judas were ſo. She ſaid, Then the Devil was a Catholick, and ſhe would not be one. He threatened her, and told her how many they were.
She ſaid, Daniel was but one; and if there were no more but ſhe her ſelf, ſhe would not turn; but took her fingers and ſhewed them, if they would tear her joint-meal, ſhe did believe the Lord would enable her to endure it for the Truth.
So they went from one to another thinking to entangle us in our talk; but we were guided by one Spirit, and ſpake one and the ſame thing in effect, ſo that they had not a jot nor tittle againſt us, but for righteouſneſs ſake: Our God did keep us by his own Power and Holineſs out of their hands; honor and praiſes be given to his powerful Name for ever
He (the ſaid Fryar) came to me another time like a Bear robbed of her Whelps, and told me, if I would be a Catholick, I ſhould ſay ſo; otherwiſe they would uſe me badly, and I ſhould never ſee the face of Sarah again, but ſhould dye by my ſelf, and a thouſand Devils ſhould carry my ſoul to Hell. I asked him if he were the Meſſenger of God to me. He ſaid he was. I ſaid, What is my ſin? or wherein have I provoked the Lord, that he doth ſend me ſuch a ſtrait Meſſage? He ſaid, Becauſe I would not be a Catholick. I ſaid, I deny thee and thy Meſſage too, and the Spirit which ſpake in thee, the Lord never ſpake it. He ſaid, that he would lay me in a whole Pile of Chains, where I ſhould ſee neither Sun nor Moon. I ſaid, he could not ſeparate me from the love of God in Chriſt Jeſus, lay me where he would. He ſaid, He would give me to the Devil. I ſaid, I did not fear all the Devils in Hell, the Lord was my Keeper; Though he had the Inquiſition, with all the Countreys round about, on his ſide, and was alone by my ſelf, I did not fear them; if there were thouſands more, the Lord was on my right hand, and the worſt they could do, was but to kill the body, they could not touch my life no more than the Devil could Job’s. He ſaid, that I ſhould never go out of that Room alive. I ſaid, the Lord was ſufficient to deliver me: But whether he would or would not, I would not forſake a living Fountain to drink at a broken Ci828D ſtern 18 D1v 828 18 ſtern: And they had no Law to keep us there, but ſuch a Law as Ahab had for Naboth’s Vinyard. He curſt himſelf, and call’d upon his gods and went forth; and as he was making faſt the door, he put in his hand at the hole of the door, and ſaid, Abide there Member of the Devil. I ſaid, The Devil’s Members did the Devil’s Work; the Woes and Plagues of the Lord would be upon them for it. He went and told the Inquiſitor of it, and he laught at him: ſaw it, and felt it in that which is Eternal. I was moved out of that Room before he came aga in; and when he came, he brought one of the Inquiſitors men with him, and two very good Hens, and ſaid, the Lord Inquiſitor has ſent them in love to me. I ſaid, his love I did receive, but I could not take his Hens, for it was not the practice of the ſervants of the Lord to be chargeable to any while they have of their own. He ſaid, We must not count anything our own; for in the primitive times they did sell their poſſeſſions, and laid them down at the Apoſtles feet. He ſaid; We ſhould not want any thing if they did ſpend a thouſand Crowns. I believe he would have had us lay down our money at his feet. He ſaid, I was proud, becauſe I would not take the Inquiſitors Hens when he ſent them me in Charity. I asked whether he kept me in Priſon, and ſent me his Charity. He ſaid, it was for the good of our ſouls he kept us in priſon. I told him, Our ſouls were out of the Inquiſitors reach, or his either; he told me before, if we had not been going to preach, we might have gone where we would. I askt him, What ſhould our ſouls have done then? and why their love ſhould extend more to us, than to their own family? They could not charge us with ſin and they did commit all manner of ſin; they might put them into the inquiſition and bid turn. He ſaid again We had not the true Faith, and ſhew’d me his Crucifix, and askt me if I thought he did worſhip that? I askt him what he did do with it? he ſaid it was a Repreſentation. I said, it did not repreſent Chriſt, for he was the expreſs image of his Father’s glory, which is Light and Life. I ſaid, if he could put any life in any of his images, he might bring them to me. And I askt him what Repreſentation Daniel had in the Lyons Den; or Jonah in the Whales belly, they cryed unto the Lord, and he delivered them. He ſaid, I talkt like a mad woman, I talkt ſo much against their idols. He was in a rage; and ſaid, He would give me to the Devil. I bid him give his own, I am the Lords. He ſtood up, and ſaid 19 D2r 829 19 ſaid He would do by me as the Apoſtles did by Ananias and Saphira. He ſtood up and opened his mouth; and I ſtood up to him and denied him in the Name of the Lord, the living God, and ſaid he had no power over me. And away he went to Sarah with the Hens, and told her that I was ſick, and the Lord Inquiſitor had ſent two Hens, and I would be glad to eat a piece of one if ſhe ſhould dreſs one of them preſently — and the other tomorrow. Mark, this Deceiver! this Lyar! But ſhe ſtanding in the Counſel of the Lord, anſwered him accordingly as I did; and he carried them away again. We did not dare to take them, the Lord did forbid us. He ſaid, You would fain be burned, becauſe you would make the World believe you did love God ſo well as to ſuffer in that kind. I ſaid, I did not deſire to be burnt but if the Lord did call me to it. I did believe he would give me power to undergo it for his truth; and if every hair of my head was a body, I could offer them up all for the Teſtimony of Jeſus. He came twice to know whether I had not been inſpired of the Holy Ghoſt to be a Catholick ſince I came into the Inquiſition. I ſaid, No; he ſaid, we were; he ſaid, We called the Spirit of the Holy Ghoſt the Sipirit of the Devil. We ſaid, the Spirit of the Holy Ghoſt in us will reſist the Devil. We told him the inſpiration of the Holy Ghoſt was never wrought in the Will of man, nor in man’s time, but in the Will of God, and in God’s time. He asked, How we did know a clean from an unclean Spirit? We ſaid, an unclean ſpirit did burden the Seed of God, and dam up the Springs of Life; and a clean ſpirit would open the Springs of Life, and refreſh the Seed; it was a Riddle to him, but he ſaid it was true: He would aſſent to pure truth ſometimes
We asked him Whether every man and woman did not ſtand guilty before God of all the ſins they ever committed before Regeneration? He ſaid, Yea. And he did confeſs all their Learning and Languages (in their places) was but to ſerve the Lord. We told him, all their Praying, Preaching and Crouding, was no more accepted than Cain’s Sacrifice, unleſs they were moved of the Eternal Spirit of the Lord. We askt him, if he that was in them, was greater than he that was in us; and why they had not overcome us all that time? We were very ſenſible of their workings day and night. He ſaid, Becauſe we reſiſted ſtill. We askt him for our Bibles? He ſaid, We ſhould never ſee them again, they were falſe. D2 We 20 D2v 830 20 We ſaid, if they were conjuring Books, they had no warrant from the Lord to take them from us.
They always came two Fryars at a time, and they would fall down and howl, and wiſh bitter wiſhes upon themſelves if they were not in the truth. We would deny them, and preach truth to them, the Light of the Lord Jeſus in the Conſciences of every one, to lead them to a pure life, and did ask them where the pure and holy life was, and what all of them did do, that the people did live in ſin and all manner of wickedneſs? And whether words and forms would ſerve without life and power? He was as bloody a fiery Serpent, as ever was born of a Woman, and did ſtrike as hard at our lives, & would hold up his hand often to ſtrike us, but had never the power, he would quickly be cut down, that he would ſay, we were good women, and he would do us any good. He was compell’d to work for us ſometimes, and would ſay it was for God’s ſake, and would have us thank him for it. We would tell him, thoſe that did any thing for God, did not look for a reward from man. He ſaid, We were the worſt of all creatures, and we ſhould be uſed worſe than any; the Turks, Arminians, Proteſtants and Lutherans ſhould be uſed better than we. We ſaid, the pure Life was ever counted the worſt, and we muſt ſuffer; we were the Lords, and could truſt him; let him do what he would with us, we did not fear any evil tydings; we were ſetled and grounded in the truth; and the more they did preſecute us, the stronger we did grow; We were bold and valiant for God’s Truth, that whatſoever we did ſuffer, we could not fear. We were ſeparated two years; I had neither fire nor candle in that time above two hours, none did bring me any, nor I had not freedom to call for any.
The Fryars went to Sarah, and told her, if ſhe would, ſhe ſhould go forth of the Priſon, and ſay nothing, nor do nothing. She ſaid, ſhe would upon that account. He ſaid, they would come in the morning, and ſo they did; but the Lord ſaw their deceit, and forewarned Sarah, and bid her mind Eſau, who sold his Birth right for a morſel of meat; and Judas, that betrayed his Maſter for thirty pieces of Silver: That when they came, ſhe (was strengthned againſt them, and) ſaid, ſhe ſtood in the Counſel of God, and could take up nothing in her own will; they had not power to have her forth. They ſaid the Inquiſitor ſaid, if we did want Linnen, Wool831len, 21 D3r 831 21 len, Stockins, Shooes or Money, we ſhould have it.
But there was a poor Engliſh man heard that Sarah was in a room with a Window next the Street, it was high; he got up, and ſpake a few words to her; and they came violently & hall’d him down, and caſt him into priſon upon life and death: And the Fryars came to know of us whether he had brought any Letters. We ſaid no; I did not ſee him. They ſaid, they did think he would be hang’d for it. He was the one that they had taken from the Turks, and made a Catholick of him. Sarah wrote a few lines to me of it, and ſaid ſhe did think the Engliſh Fryars were the chief actors of it, (we had a private way to ſend to each other.) I wrote to her again, and after my Salutation, I ſaid, Whereas ſhe ſaid the Fryars were the chief actors. ſhe might be ſure of that, for they did haſten to fill up their meaſures; but I believe the Lord wil preſerve the poor man for his love; I am made to ſeek the Lord for him with tears: And I deſired ſhe would ſend him ſomething once a day, if the Keeper would carry it; and I told her of the glorious manifeſtations of God to my ſoul, for her comfort, ſo that I was raviſhed with love, and my Beloved was the chiefeſt of ten thouſands; and how I did not fear the face of any man, though I did feel their arrows, for my Phyſician is nigh me, and how I was waiting upon the Lord, and ſaw our ſafe return into England, and I was talking with G.F. to my great refreſhment: The Name of G.F. did prick them to the heart. I ſaid, it was much they did not tempt us with money. I bid her take heed, the Light would diſcover it, and many more things, let it come under what cover it would.
And this Paper came to the Fryar’s hands, by what means we could never tell, but as the Light did ſhew us; the Lord would have it ſo; it ſmote the Fryar, that he was tormented many days, and he tranſlated it into Italian, and laid it before their Lord Inquiſitor, and got the Inquiſitor’s Lieutenant, and came to me with both the Papers in his hand, and askt me if I could read it? I said, Yea, I writ it. O! did you indeed! (said he) And what is it you ſay of me here? That which is truth, ſaid I. Then he ſaid, Where is the Paper Sarah ſent? bring it, or elſe I will ſearch the Trunk, and every where elſe. I bid him ſearch where he would. He ſaid, I muſt tell what man it was that brought me the Ink, or elſe I ſhould be tyed with 22 D3v 832 22 with Chains presently. I told him I had done nothing but what was juſt and right in the ſight of God, and what I did ſuffer would be for Truth’s ſake; and I did not care, I would not meddle nor make with the poor Workmen. He ſaid, For God’s ſake tell me what Sarah did write? I told him a few words, and ſaid it was truth. Said he, You ſay it is much we do not tempt you with money. And in few hours they came and tempted us with money often. So the Lieutenant took my ink and threw it away; and they were ſmitten as if they would have fallen to the ground, and went their way. I saw them no more in three Weeks; but the poor man was ſet free the next morning.
They went to Sarah, and told her that I had honeſtly confeſt all, and that ſhe was beſt to confeſs too; and threatned her with a Halter, and to take away a Bed and Trunk, and her Money, to have half of it for me. she anſwered, ſhe might not ſend to me any more. She askt him, Whether he was a Miniſter of Chriſt, or a Magiſtrate? if he were a Magiſtrate, he might take her money, but ſhe would not give it him: And they that were with him, said No, he should not meddle with any thing. He was a bitter wicked man. He told her, She was poſſest. She anſwered and ſaid, ſhe was with the power of an endless life.
The Lord was not wanting to us at any time, for Power nor Words to ſtop the mouths of gain-ſayers of his Truth, neither in Revelations nor Viſions; Praises be to his Name for ever. He kept us in our weakeſt condition, bold for his Truth, declaring againſt all ſin and wickedneſs, ſo that many were convinced, but did not dare to own it, for fear of Faggot and Fire. There were none that had any thing to ſay againſt what we spake, but t he Fryers, but would have us to join with them. There were none did come into the inquiſition but the judgements of the Lord would be upon them, ſo that they would cry and foam, and ſend for a Phyſician many of them. The unclean ſpirits would cry out as much as ever they did againſt Jeſus, and would gnaſh with their teeth when we were at prayer; there was a Fryer and other great men, the Fryer would run as if he had been at his Wits end, and call to the Keeper, and he would run for the Engliſh Fryer, and he would go the Inquiſitor for counſel, and ſometime they would ſend them word they ſhould have a remedy, I ſhould be ſent to Rome; 23 D4r 833 23 Rome; and ſometimes the Fryers would come, but had not power to ſay any thing to me of it) The Lord did ſay to us, Lift up your Voice like the noise of a Trumpet, and ſound forth my Truth like the ſhout of a King. There was one that life was ariſen in him but they were upon him as Eagles til they had destroy’d him; he did undergo terrible Judgements all the time he was in the Inquisition.
Our money ſerved us a year and ſeven Weeks; and when it was almoſt gone, the Fryars brought the Inquiſitor’s Chamberlain to buy our Hats. We ſaid, we came not there to sel our clothes, nor any thing we had. Then the Fryar did commend us for that, and told us we might have kept our money to ſerve us otherwise. We said, No, we could not keep any money, and be chargeable to any; We could truſt God. He said, He did ſee we could; but they ſhould have maintained us while they kept us Priſoners.
And then the Lord did take away our ſtomacks; we did eat but little for three or four Weeks; and then the Lord called us to faſting for eleven dayes together, but it was ſo little, that the Fryars came and ſaid, that it was impoſſible that Creatures could live with ſo little meat, as they did ſee we did for ſo long time together; and asked what we would do? And ſaid their Lord Inquiſitor said, We might have anything we would. We ſaid, We muſt wait to know the mind of God, what he would have us to do. We did not faſt in our own Wills but in obedience to the Lord. They were much troubled, and ſent us meat, and ſaid the English Conſul ſent it. We could not take any thing till the Lord’s time was come. We were weak, so that Sarah did dreſs her head as ſhe would lye in her Grave. (poor Lamb) I lay looking for the Lord to put an end to the sad trial which way it ſeemed good in his ſight. Then I heard a voice, ſaying, Ye ſhall not dye. I believed the Lord, and his glory did appear much in our faſt; he was very gracious to us, and did refreſh us with his living preſence continually, and we did behold his beauty to our great joy and comfort, and he was large to us in his promiſes, ſo that we were kept quiet and ſtill, (the ſting of Death being taken away,) our ſouls, hearts and minds were at peace with the Lord, ſo that they could not tell whether we were dead or alive but as they did call to us once a day, till the time the Lord had appointed we ſhould eat; and they were made to bring 24 D4v 834 24 bring many good things, and laid them down by us; ſo that Scripture we witneſſed fulfilled, Our Enemies treated us kindly in a ſtrange Land, ſaid I. But we were afraid to eat, and cryed to the Lord, and ſaid, We had rather dye, than eat any thing that is polluted and unclean. The Lord said unto me, Thou mayeſt as freely eat, as if thou hadſt wrought for it with thy hands; I will ſanctifie it to thee through the Croſs. And he ſaid to Sarah, Thou ſhalt eat the fruit of thy hands, and be bleſſed. We did eat and were refreſhed, to the praiſe and glory of our God for ever. We did eat but little in two Months; and they did bring us what ever we did ſpeak for, for 8, or 10 dayes; and afterward we were ſo ſtraitned for want of food, it did us more hurt than our Faſt. Yet the Lord did work as great a Miracle by our preſervation, as he did by raiſing Lazarus out of the Grave. The Fryars did ſay, the Lord did keep us alive by his mighty power, becauſe we ſhould be Catholicks. We ſaid, the Lord would make it manifeſt to us then; they should know the Lord had another end in it one day.
But ſtill they ſaid, There was no Redemption for us. We ſaid, with the Lord there was mercy and plenteous Redemption. We bid them, take heed ye be not found fighters againſt God. They ſaid, We were fooliſh women. We ſaid we were the Lord’s fools, and the Lord’s Fools were right dear, and precious in his ſight, and wo to them that do offend them. He ſaid, they were the Lord’s fools, and ſhewed us their deceitful Gowns, and their ſhaven Crowns, and ſaid they did wear it for God’s ſake, to be laught at of the world, We ſaid, they did not wear it for God’s ſake, unleſs they were moved of the holy Spirit of God to wear it. He ſaid, it was no matter, they did wear it becauſe of their Superiors. [mark, and before it was for God’s sake, as he ſaid] He thought to bring us under him for our food, and did make us ſuffer a while, though the Inquiſitor and the Magiſtrates had taken a courſe we ſhould want for nothing. But the Lord did torment him and all the reſt, till they did bring us ſuch things as were fitting. Then he did work all that he could to ſend me to Rome, and was coming two or three times (for what I know) to fetch me forth, but the Lord would not ſuffer them; and when they saw they could not prevaile that way, they ſaid we ſhould go both; but the Fryar ſhould go firſt, becauſe he was not well; he got leave to go, he was so weary of 25 E1r 835 25 of coming to us, that he did beſeech the Lord Inquiſitor he might come no more to us. He told Sarah I was a Witch, and that I knew what was done at London, and he would come to me no more, he ſaid, Because when he did tell me a company of lyes, I said, I had a witneſs for God in me, which was faithful and true, and I did believe God’s witneſs.
The Diviners did wax mad, and did run as at their wits end, from Mountain to Hill, and from Hill to Mountain, to cover them: They ran to the Inquiſitor, and writ to the Pope, and went to him; their King did not hide them at all; ſome of them did gnash with their teeth, and even gnaw their tongues for pain: Yet the rest would not repent of their blaſphemy, ſorcery, nor inchantments, but do poſt on to fill up their meaſures; Oh! the Lord reward them according to their works. A little before the Fryar went to Rome, he came to the Inquiſition Chamber with a Scribe, to write concerning us, to carry it with him; I ſaw him, as God would have it; the Lord ſaid, There is thy deadly foe. They were writing part of three dayes; and when they had ended it, the Lord would not let me eat till the Scribe did come where I was, that I might pronounce wo againſt it, and defie it, which I did do in the Name of the Lord, and it did wither with all the reſt: After it was gone the English Conſul came to us with a Scribe, and he brought us a doller from a Mailer of a Ship that came from Plymouth; I told him, I did receive my Countrey man’s Love, but could not receive his Money. He askt me, What I wou’d do if I would take no money? I ſaid, the Lord was my portion, and I could not lack any good thing. I ſaid to him, We were in thy Houſe near 15. Weeks, didst thou ſee any cauſe of Death or bonds in us? He ſaid, No. I askt him, how he would diſpence with his Conſcience for telling us, He would have us before the Inquiſitor, and thon didst know that Room was provided for us; and had not we been kept alive by the mighty Power of God, we might have been dead long ſince. He said, How could I help it! I ſaid We are the Servants of the living God, and were brought here by permiſſion, and in the Spirit of Meekness gave in our Teſtimony for the Lord in faithfulneſs, and told you the truth as it is in Jeſus, and called you all to repentance, and fore-warned you in love to your ſouls, of the evil the Lord is bringing upon you, if you do not E repent 26 E1v 836 26 repent. He ſaid, However it be, it will go well with you. [Mark that,] I told him, he required a ſign of me when we were at his houſe, if we were the ſervants of the Lord God; I gave him a ſign from the living God, and my friend gave him another from the Lord, to his ſhame and deſtruction for ever. I askt him Whether it were not true we ſpake to him, he ſaid it was, but how ſhould he help it? I ſaid, Thou art a condemned perſon, and ſtands guilty before God; yet nevertheleſs repent, if thou canſt find a place. He ſmil’d upon the Scribe in deceit, but his lips did quiver, and his belly trembled, and he could ſcarce ſtand upon his legs. He was as proper a man as moſt was in the City, and full, and in his prime age. O! he was conſumed as a Snail in a ſhell, which was a ſufficient ſign for the whole City, if their hearts were not harder than Adamants, He ſaid, How ſhould he help it? He might have helpt it, but he was as willing to prove us, as any of them all. He was ſworn upon his Oath to protect the Engliſh; and their Ruler bid him let us go about our buſineſs, and said, We were honeſt women; and then he might have let us go before we were under the black Rod.
Then he went to Sarah with the Doller; ſhe told him ſhe could not take the Money; but if he had a Letter for us, ſhe ſhould be free to receive that. He said, he had not any. He askt her what she did want? She ſaid, the Lord was her Shepherd, ſhe could not want any good thing; but ſhe did long for her Freedom. He ſaid, That you may have in time. He told us, we ſhould have ink and paper to write: But when he was gone, they would not let us. The next time we heard of him, he was dead; We could have rejoiced if he had dyed for righteouſneſs ſake; for the Lord delighteth not in the death of a ſinner.
The Fryar was gone to Rome, and they ſaid, he muſt ſtay there till we came. There was great working to ſend us there, but the Lord did prevent them, that they could not ſend us there. Then the Lord did work to bring us together again after ſo long time we had been parted. There were five doors between us with Locks and Bolts, but the Keeper had not power to make them faſt, but as Sarah could undo them to come where I could ſee her, but could not ſpeak to her, for there were them that did watch us night and day; yet ſhe being moved of the Lord, did come to my 27 E2r 837 27 my door by night; she muſt come by the Fryars door, he and the Doctor of Law were together, and they did ſet a trap to take her in, and many did watch about the Priſon, and would complain. Then ſhe was lockt up again; but they had no peace in that, till the doors were open again; then we did ſit in the sight of each other, to wait upon the Lord, ſo that our voices were heard far; the Magiſtrates would hear and bow to it ſometime; then the complainers were weary, and did work to have us brought together; and we did wait and pray, and the Magiſtrates would come in and look upon us many times, but would ſay nothing to us: There were of divers Nations brought into the Inquiſition Prisoners, and the Fryars, and the reſt that were great, would go in their way to make Chriſtians of them; and we were made to ſtand up againſt them and their ways, and deny them in the Name of the Lord, and declare the truth to the ſimple-hearted continually, if we did suffer death for it; We could not endure to hear the Name of the Lord blaſphemed, nor his pure Way of Truth perverted, nor the ignorant deceived. They did write all they underſtood of what we spake, and ſent it to the Court Chamber before the Inquiſitor and Magiſtrates, but the Lord did blaſt it with the Mildews of his wrathful indignation, and burnt it up with the brightneſs of his Son, and we rejoiced in our God; but ſtill our burdens continued very heavy, and our righteous ſouls were vexed with the filthy Converſation of the Wicked, and the pure Seed of God was preſt from the day to day, that our ſpirits did mourn, and our hearts were grieved becauſe of the hardneſs of their hearts, and their Rebellion against their Maker, who was ſo gracious to them, to ſuffer them ſo long in all their abominations, and waited to be gracious to them, and knock at the Door of their hearts, calling for Juſtice, Mercy and Humility; but behold Oppreſſion, Cruelty, and Self-Exaltation, notwithſtanding the Lord did ſtrive so much with them, and ſent ſo many undeniable truths, and infallible teſtimonies of the coming of his Son to Judgement, and so clear a manifeſtation of the way to eternal Salvation given forth of his own mouth, by his eternal Spirit, and having us for an example who were kept by his Power and Holineſs; they had not a jot nor tittle againſt us, but for righteouſness ſake, though they had winnowed and fanned us ſo long: E2 Glory 28 E2v 838 28 Glory, honor and praiſes be given to our God for ever. O they would not let us know of any Engliſh Ship that came into the Harbour, as near as they could, but the Lord would make it manifeſt to us; We had a great working and ſtriving in our bodies, but we knew not what it meant; the arrows of the Wicked did flye, ſo that my ſoul was plunged and overwhelmed from head to feet, and the terrors of the unrighteous had taken hold of us, and the flames of Hell compaſſed us about; then the Lord appeared unto me in a dream, and ſaid There were two Engliſh Friends in the City which did plead for our liberty in our behalf, and he had taken all fear away from them, and made them bold. And in a little while after the Magiſtrates ſent for us forth and askt us, whether we were ſick, or whether we did want any thing; and were very tender to us, and ſaid we ſhould write to England, and bid the Scribe give us Ink and Paper; he ſaid he would; but he was ſo wicked he did not. They did not tell us of any Engliſh that were there; but there was one Francis Steward of London, a Captain of a Ship, and a Fryar of Ireland, which came to the City together (for what we know) and they did take great pains for us, and went to their Ruler, and the Inquiſitor, and to ſeveral Magiſtrates and Fryars, and the new English Conſul with them, and wrought much amongſt them that all were willing to let us go, ſave the Inquiſitor; they ſaid; and he ſaid, He could not free us without an Order from the Pope. But we had many heavy Enemies beſides, which would not be ſeen; but they obtained the favour to come and ſpeak with us, which was a great thing in ſuch a place.
They ſent for us to the Court-Chamber, and the Engliſh Conſul askt us, if we were willing to go back to England? We ſaid, if it were the Will of God we might. The Captain ſpake to us with tears in his eyes, and told us what they had done for us, but could not prevail; It is this Inquiſitor (ſaid he) the reſt were made free; you have preached among theſe people he ſaid. We told him we were called upon the Teſtimony of our Conſcience, and the truth that we have witneſſed forth among them, we ſhould ſtand to maintain with our blood. He ſaid, if they could get us off, he would freely give us our paſſage, and provide for us, and the Veſſel was his own. We told him, his love was as well accepted of the Lord, as if he did carry us. He offered us money; he saw the Lord would not 29 E3r 839 2n9 not ſuffer us to take any. He took our Names. We told them they took us out of our way, and put us into the Inquiſition, and bid us change our minds; and we could not, the Lord had changed us into that which changed not, if they would burn us to aſhes, or chop us as Herbs to the Pot. The Fryar ſaid, We did not work; which was falſe; we had Work of our own, and did work as we were able. We told him, our Work and Maintenance was in England. And they ſaid, it was true. He said, We would not accept of the Inquiſitor’s Dyet. We did not know who did prepare for us; we did receive our meat as we had freedom in the Lord. Then he ſaid, We had ſuffered long enough, and too long, but we ſhould have our freedom in flawed-reproductionone word days, and that they would ſend to the Pope for an Order. And there were many Engliſh ships that way; but the Captain ſaw it was a very hard thing; ſo that it grieved him to the heart: He prayed God to comfort us, and he went away; and we do beſeech God to bleſs and preſerve him unto everlaſting life, and never to let him nor his go without a bleſſing from him, for his love: he did venture himſelf exceedingly in that place. But after he was gone, they aroſe up against us with one accord; the Inquiſitor came up into a Tower, and lookt down upon us as if he would have eaten us, and they did try us for our lives again, and did ſhut up our doors many Weeks; we could not tell for what; at length the Inquiſitor came into the Tower again, and Sarah was moved to call to him, to have the door opened for us to go down into the Court to waſh our clothes. Then he gave command for the door to be opened once a Week; and in a little while ’twas open every day. But great was our affliction indeed; and ſhe told him, if we were the Popes Priſoners, we would appeal to the Pope, and he ſhould ſend us to him. But them in the priſon with us, eſpecially the Fryar, were mortal Enemies to us, but yet they would have fed us with the choiceſt of their meat, and would gladly give us whole Bottles of Wine, if we would receive it, and were greatly troubled becauſe we did refuſe to eat and drink with them, and did perſecute us exceedingly; but the Lord did viſit them with his dreadful Judgements, the Fryar was tormented night and day, his body did periſh, the Doctors and Chyrurgions did follow him a long time.And 30 E3v 840 30
And there were two or three Engliſh Ships there, came into harbour, and Sarah ſaw the coming of them in a Viſion of the night, and there was great pleading for us, that we ſaw; but ſhe heard a Voice, saying, We could not go now. So we were made willing to wait the Lords time.
Then they ſent for us forth when the Ships were gone, and askt us if we would be Catholicks: And we ſaid, we were true Chriſtians, and had received the Spirit of Chriſt, and he that had not the Spirit of Chriſt, was none of his. The Engliſh Consul told us of the Ships, and ſaid, they would not let us go unleſs we would be Catholicks; and that we muſt ſuffer more impriſonment yet; and ſaid, he did what he could for us One of the Magistrates ſhewed us the Croſs; We told them, and ſaid, We did take up the Croſs of Chriſt daily, which is the great Power of God to crucifie ſin and iniquity. So we told them that one of their Fathers did promiſe us our liberty. We did think that Fryar was too tender hearted to ſtay among them; he did take a great deal of pains for us (the Captain ſaid) we told him, he would never have cauſe to repent it; the bleſſing of God would be upon him for any thing he ſhould do for us; for we were the Servants of the living God, and he promiſed us our freedoms in a little time.
This following I received from them in other Papers to Friends. D.B.,
O Dearly beloved Friends, Fathers and Elders, and Pillars of Gods Spiritual Houſe, and Brethren and Siſters in the Lord Jeſus Chriſt in the meaſure of Love and Life of our God do we ſalute you all, and do embrace you in that which is Eternal, and we do greatly rejoice and glorifie the Name of our Heavenly Father, that he hath counted us worthy to be partakers of the death and ſufferings of his bleſſd Son, with you; though we be the leaſt of Gods Flock, yet we are of the true Fold, whereof Chriſt Jeſus is Shepherd; and he hath had as tender a care over us, as he hath had of any of his Lambs which he hath called forth in this the day of his Power, and hath carryed us through, and over as great afflictions as moſt of our Brethren and ſufferers for his Name 31 E4r 841 31 Name, both in mockings, ſcoffings, ſcornings, reproaches, ſtripes, contradictions, perils at Land, and perils at Sea, fiery tryals, cruel threatnings, grief of heart, ſorrow of ſoul, heats and colds, faſtings and watchings, fears within, and frightings without, terrible temptations and perſecutions, and dreadful impriſonments and buffetings of Satan; yet in all theſe our tryals the Lord was very gracious unto us, and not abſent himſelf from us, neither ſuffered his faithfulneſs to fail us, but did bear us up, and keep us from fainting in the midſt of our extremity; we had not another to make our moan to, but the Lord alone, neither could we expect a drop of mercy, favour or refreſhment, but what he did diſtil from his living Preſence, and work by his own ſtrength; for we ſate one in one room, and the other in another, near a year, as Owls in Deſerts, and as people forſaken in ſolitary places; then did we enjoy the preſence of the Lord, and did behold the brightneſs of his Glory, and we did ſee you our dear Friends, in the Light of Jeſus, and did behold your order, and ſtedfastness of your Faith and Love to all Saints, and were refreſhed in all the faithful hearted, and felt the iſſues of Love and Life which did ſtream from the hearts of thoſe that were wholly joined to the Fountain, and were made ſensible of the benefit of your prayers.
O the ſorrows, the mournings, the tears! but thoſe that ſow in tears, ſhall reap in joy. A true ſorrow begets a true joy; and a true Croſſe, a true Crown: For when our ſorrows did abound, the Love of God did abound much more; the deeper the ſorrows, the greater the joys; the greater the Croſs, the weightier the Crown.
Dear Friends and Brethren, marvel not that Iſrael is not gathered, our Judgement remains with the Lord, and ſo do our Labours; for it was not for want of travel, nor pain, nor love to their ſouls; for we could have been contented to have fed upon the Graſs on the ground, ſo we might have had our freedom amongſt them: For had it not been for the great oppoſition, they would have followed after us as Chickens after a Hen, both great and ſmall: But oh the ſwelling ſeas, the raging and foaming Waves, Stormy Winds and Floods, and deep Waters, and high Mountains and Hills, hard Rocks, rough wayes, and crooked paths, tall Cedars, strong Oaks, fruitleſs Trees, and corrupted ones, that cumber the ground, and hinder the righteous Seed to be ſown, and the noble Plants from being planted: Oh! they ſhut up the Kingdom againſt the ſimple-hearted, and hide the key of knowledge from the innocent ones, and will not enter into the Kingdom themſelves, nor ſuffer them that would 32 E4v 842 32 would enter, but stir up the Magiſtrates to form carnal Weapons, thinking to prevent the Lord of taking to him his Inheritance, and to diſpoſſeſs his Son who is heir of all, that he might not have a dwelling-place amongſt them, nor a habitation nigh them; becauſe that his Light will diſcover their darkneſs, and his brightneſs will burn up all their abominations, and marr their beauty, and ſtain their glory, their pomp and their pride, that it may periſh as the untimely Figs, and fall as the Flower of the Field, and wither as the Graſſe upon the houſe-top. Oh the Belly of Hell, the Jaws of Satan, the whole Myſterie of iniquity is at the height, and all manner of abominations that make deſolate, stands where it ought not, and is upholden by a Law, That upon pain of death none muſt ſpeak againſt it, nor walk contrary to it. But praiſes to our God, he carryed us forth to declare againſt it daily. Oh the blind Guides, the ſeducing ſpirits that do cauſe the people to err, and compel them to worſhip the Beaſt and his Image, and to have his mark in their fore-heads, and in their hands, and to bow to Pictures and painted Walls, and to worſhip the things of their own hands, and to fall down to that which their own fingers have faſhioned, and will not ſuffer them to look towards Sion upon pain of death, nor to walk towards Jeruſalem upon pain of Faggot and Fire, but muſt abide in Babel, and believe whatſoever they speak or do, to be truth. But oh the wayes, the worſhips, the faſhions, forms, cuſtoms, traditions obſervations and imaginations which they have drawn in by their dark Divinations, to keep the poor people in blindneſs and ignorance, ſo that they periſh for want of knowledge, and are corrupted, becauſe the way of truth is not made known among them; they are all in the many wayes, out of the one true and living way, and their ways be ſo many and ſo monſtrous, that they are unrehearſible; but the Lord our God hath kindled a fire in the midſt of them, that will conſume all forms, faſhions, cuſtoms and traditions of men, and will burn up the bryars, thorns and tares, ſtubble and fruitleſs Trees, and corrupted ones, and will blaſt all the fruits, works and labours of wicked and ungodly men with the Mill-dews of his wrathful indignation, and will ſcatter all his Enemies with the Whirl-winds of his displeaſure. They do not know the Scriptures. Their Bibles would grieve any honeſt heart to behold them, becauſe of the corruption: They ſaid, our Bibles were falſe: I asked wherein? The Fryar ſaid, Maccabees was not in them. I said, if any were taken from them, yet the reſt might be pure; but if any were added to them, then they were corrupted. He askt me, Whe843ther 33 F1r 843 33 ther I did not think it meet for every one to bow at the Name of Jeſus. I ſaid, Yea. He ſaid, Jeſus, and bid me fall down, or bow my body. I told him, My heart and whole body was bowed under the Name of Jeſus; but I ſhould not ſtoop to his will, nor any man’s elſe: He that departeth from iniquity, boweth to the Name of Jeſus; but those that live in ſin and wickedneſs, do not ſtoop to the Son of God. And he told me, they ſtood in the ſame Power the Apoſtles did, and were guided by the ſame Spirit as they were. I asked why they did abuſe their Power then, and make uſe of Carnal Weapons. He ſaid they did not, they were all spiritual, their Inquiſition, & their Chains and Irons, and all is ſpiritual. The wiſe may judge And he asked, Whether we judged them all damn’d that were not of our Judgement. I ſaid, Nay, we had otherwiſe learned Chriſt; thoſe that were in a Reprobate condition to day, the Lord may call them out of it tomorrow, for what I know. He ſaid, They did judge us damn’d, and all that were not of their Faith. I told him, Man’s Judgement we did not matter.
In a Viſion of the night I ſaw in the Firmament ſix Suns, one at a diſtance from the reſt, that did appear to be but half an hour high; the other five ſtood four-ſquare, one in the middle; and they did croſs over each other; the higheſt did not ſeem to be above an hour high. And when I did awake, I was troubled in my ſpirit to know the Viſion; and I waited upon the Lord, and he ſignified to me in the Light, The ſix Suns were ſix Nations, whoſe Lights were near out; and the five which croſſed each other, ſignified to me ſome riſing amongſt them.
And the Fryar came to me, and ſaid, It was God’s will we ſhould be kept there, or elſe they could not keep us. I told him the Lord did ſuffer wicked men to do wickedly, but did not will them to do it. He did ſuffer Herod to take off John Baptiſt’s head, but he did not will him to do it; and did ſuffer Stephen to be ſtoned, and Judas to F betray 34 F1v 844 34 betray Chriſt, but he did not will them to do it; for if he had, he would not have condemned them for it. He ſaid, Then we are wicked men: I ſaid, They are wicked men that work wickedneſs. The Fryar would ſay ſtill, We had not the true Faith. We ſaid, By Faith we ſtand, and by the Power of God we are upholden; doſt thou think it is by our own power and holineſs we are kept from a vain converſation, from ſin and wickedneſs? He ſaid, That was our pride. We said. No, We could glory in the Lord, we were children of wrath once as well as others; But the Lord hath quickned us that were dead, by the living Word of his Grace, and hath waſhed, cleanſed and sanctified us through ſoul and ſpirit, in part, according to our meaſures, and we do preſs forward towards that which is perfect. He then did ſay, We were good Women, but yet there was no redemption for us except we would be Catholicks.
Now the Lord said, Fear not Daughters of Sion, I will carry you forth as Gold tryed out of the fire. And many precious promiſes did the Lord refreſh us with, in our greateſt extremity, and would appear in this glory, that our ſouls would be raviſhed in his preſence; I had the Spirit of Prayer upon me, and I was afraid to ſpeak to the Lord, for fear I ſhould ſpeak one word that would not pleaſe him. And the Lord ſaid Fear not Daughter of Sion, ask what thou wilt, and I will grant it thee, whatſoever thy heart can wish. I deſired nothing of the Lord but what would make for his glory, whether it were my liberty or bondage, life or death, wherein I was highly accepted of the Lord.
The Room wherein I was ſeparated, was near the Chancery, where all the Biſhops Courtiers did reſort, and would come into the Inquiſition Courts, and I had Work amongſt them daily; they would come on purpoſe to their condemnation; ſome would be ſmitten, and run as if they hunted; and ſome would be ſet on fire, and cry, Caldere, caldere, and fuoco, fuoco, and many would pitty us becauſe we were not Catholicks; the Fryars would ſay, We might be Catholicks, and keep our own Religion too: and we ſhould not be known we were Catholicks, except we were brought before a Juſtice of Peace. We askt if we ſhould profeſs a Chriſt we ſhould be aſham’d of?
But as for the poor Workmen, they were willing to do any thing for us, and were diligent to hear us, the Witneſs of God in them 35 F2r 845 35 them did anſwer to the truth; there were many eyes over them; had it not been for the great oppoſition, there were hundreds would have flown to the truth.
And because I ſaid I did talk with G.F. he (the Fryar) asked, Whether G.F. did bring me money to maintain me in priſon. I ſaid, no, but though I was abſent in body, yet I was preſent in ſpirit, and was refreſhed in him, and in hundreds more beſides. They ſaid, I had ſeen Revelations, and had talkt with G.F. and he was God’s Revelation. Sarah said, Chriſt was God’s Revelation; he ſaid, ſhe came under the Halter for ſaying Chriſt was God’s Revelation. She answered, St. Paul ſaid, As soon as it pleaſed God to reveal his Son in me, I did not conſult with fleſh and blood, but immediately I went and preacht him; and is not Chriſt God’s Revelation then? He ſaid, Who denied that?
What they would have done to Sarah if they had taken her forth, we know not; but the Lord did work ſo wonderfully that night for the preſervation of her poor ſoul out of their net, that he is worthy to be glorified for ever.
The next time he came to me, he came in ſheeps clothing, but he had a Woolf under his Gown; he gave me words as ſoft as Butter, and as ſmooth as Oyl, when he had a Sword in his heart, and a Spear in his hand, when they ſpeak moſt faireſt, then beware of them.
He deſired us we would not think ſo hardly of him, as if he were the Author of all our wrongs and troubles; he was not (he ſaid) but would do any good he could for us, were it with his blood. But we thought he had been the chiefeſt that caſt the poor man in priſon, but he was the man that hope him out without any puniſhment at all, though the Inquiſitor did ſay he ſhould be ſeverely puniſhed. I told him he did well, he would have peace in it, and would never have cauſe to repent it. He did entreat us, he might not bear all the burthen. We told him of many wicked things he did act againſt us, and of his lying and cruel words. He bid us, take no notice what he did ſpeak. But we did feel his ſpirit, that what he ſpake, he would do, if he had not been chained. I did uſe to tell him, My Conſcience was not feared with a hot iron, I was not past feeling. At laſt he was ſo weary of coming to us, he did entreat the Inquiſitor he might not come to us any more; the Judgement of the Lord did F2 fol- 36 F2v 846 36 follow him ſo, it was like to kill him.
When we were parted, the Lord did work mightily for us, and we were kept by the Power of the Lord over our Enemies, and were bold for God’s Truth, and did make war with them in righteousneſs, ſo that they could not gain-ſay us in the truth: So that Scripture was fulfilled, The wicked mouths muſt be ſtopped; and they were put to ſilence, praises be to our God, and were made to confeſs or ſay, Of a truth God was in us; our God was a conſuming fire to them, they were not able to stand in his preſence, but they would howl and make a noiſe like Dogs, and cry, Jeſu, Maria, and flye as people driven by a mighty ruſhing Wind; the Power of the Lord did purſue after them like a Sword; that Scripture was fullfilled, which ſaith, Chriſt came not to ſend peace on earth, but a ſword, to cut down his Enemies; the Lord was on our ſide, and did take our part, and did fight for us, and did tread down our Enemies under our feet, that they could not hurt us. Mighty was the Work of God daily, our tongues cannot expreſs it; they did work day and night with their Inchantments and Divinations, Sorceries, unclean Spirits crying and foaming; inſomuch we could take little reſt day or night ſometimes; but the Lord was with us, and did work mightily by his power, and kept us over them in the life of the Son of God. My Prison was nigh to the Pallace, and to their Worſhip, that I could be heard of both; and it was laid upon me of the Lord; to call them to repentance, and to turn to the Light wherewith they were enlightned, which would lead them out of all their wicked Ways, Works and Worſhips to ſerve the true and living God in ſpirit and in truth; the Power did raiſe the Witneſs in many, and troubled them; they did ſigh and groan; and ſome did ſtay to hear me, ſo long as they durſt; for there were many did watch; and it was upon pain of death, or at leaſt to be impriſoned: As was the poor Engliſh man that did come and ſpeak to me, whom they hall’d down violently, and put him in priſon; but the Lord delivered him for his love.
And we were parted near a year, but great was the Work of the Lord, and great was the Power to carry it on. He was not wanting to us, glory be to his Name; but did give us Words and Wiſdom according to our Work: So that Scripture was fulfilled which ſaith on wiſe, Ye need not premeditate afore-hand what to 37 F3r 847 37 to ſpeak, or what to ſay; for it shall be given you of my Heavenly Father what ye ought to speak, that the Enemies ſhall not gain ſay; they were ſo tormented, that they did run to the Hills and to the Mountains to cover them from the preſence of the Lord, and from the Wrath of the Lamb which ſits upon the Throne to judg them righteouſly, and to condemn them for all their wicked deeds which they ſo ungodlily had committed againſt him.
Oh! the goodneſs of the Lord, and his long-ſuffering and forbearance which would lead them to repentance, but they would not hearken to his counſel, but turned his laws behind their backs, and hated to be instructed by them; therefore the Lord did laugh at their destruction, and did mock when their fear came: Their wickedneſs was ſo great, and my burthens ſo heavy to bear it that I cryed to the Lord, and ſaid, It is better for me to dye, than to live; and would gladly have given up my life in teſtimony againſt them all; I was (as ’twere) compell’d to declare againſt all their ways, works and worſhips, inſomuch that they ran to the Inquiſitor to have me chained, or puniſhed ſome other way; but the Power of the Lord chained them, that they could not diminish a hair of my head; the Lord was my ſafety, praiſes be to his Name for ever.
Now ſome as they paſſed to their Worſhip Houſes, would ſigh; and ſome pray, and ſome did throw ſtones at my Window; they did work night and day about the Priſon, as though they would have broke through to ſlay me; but the Lord was with me, and did fight for me, and did ſcatter his Enemies as the duſt before the Wind: Glory be to his Name for evermore.
I cannot expreſſe the large love of our God, how he did preſerve us from ſo many deaths and threatnings, as they did come to me with falling down upon their knees, ſaying Maſs, and would have me to ſay after them; but in the Name of the Lord I denied them. They would howle like Dogs, beauſe they could not beguile the innocent, and ſlay my righteous life; but praiſes be to the Lord our God, who did preſerve me from the Woolf and the Devourers, denying them and their Sacrifices.
And when they ſaw they could not prevail to betray us from the truth, then they ſaid, they would give us to the Devil to be tormented, and deliver us over to their bad Catholicks, to do by us as they pleased 38 F3v 848 38 pleaſed; for they would uſe us badly, and ſo they did ſeek to do. Oh the curſed noiſes and cryes the Sodomites did make, crying, Quake, Quake; running about the Priſon raging and ſome ſinging and crouding round the Priſon night and day, as if they would have broke through to ſlay me; and the ſons of Belial did run to bear falſe witneſs, so that I looked every hour when they would fetch me out, and ſlay me. The Enemy did ſo work to perſwade, that they had preſt my dear yoke-fellow with ſtones, which was a great trouble to me, because I could not ſuffer death with her; I did yeild ſhe had been ſlain: And afterwards this great tribulation being ended, then they ſaid my (dear and faithful) yoke-fellow ſhould be sent to Rome, and I ſhould tarry at Malta, which did so encrease my ſorrow, and wrought upon my ſpirit to try and examine wherefore the Lord ſhould deal ſo hardly with me, as to leave me behind; or whether he did not count me worthy to go and give in my teſtimony with her to Rome, and offer up my life for the Teſtimony of Jeſus, than to have my liberty to return to England with her, and I cryed day and night to the Lord, and would not give my ſoul reſt, nor my eyes ſleep till the Lord did anſwer me; glory and praiſes be to his Name for ever. But we saw Jacob muſt part with all, Benjamin must go too. So we were willing to give up in obedience to the Lord; our trials were unſpeakable. Oh the unclean ſpirits! they would ſpeak to us at noon-day; but the Lord did give us power over them, that we did not fear the wild Bores out of the Wood, nor the wild Beasts out of the Field.
Then there was one came and ſaid, that Catherine and I muſt be ſent both to Rome; Which did rejoice my ſoul, and renewed my ſtrength, because the Lord did count me Worthy to go and give in my Teſtimony for his Truth, the Word of his Propheſie, before the great and mighty ones of the Earth. The Lord ſaid, I ſhould not be afraid; and he shewed me in the Light how he had bowed them down before us, and ſaw them in the Light of Chriſt, how the Pope, the Fryars and Sorcerers ſtood in ranks, bowing down before us. So we ſaw our Dominion in Spirit: They did work to ſend us to Rome, but the Lord did blaſt it, and fought against them, that they could not send us.Now 39 F4r 849 39
Now our Teſtimony was as largely given in at Rome, as at Malta: The Fryars came to me, and ſhewed me Mary and her Babe pictured againſt the Wall, and would have me look upon it. I ſtampt with my foot and said, Curſed be all Images and Imagemakers, and all that fall down to worſhip them. Chriſt Jeſus is the expreſs image of his Fathers brightneſs, which is Light and Life, who doth reveal the myſterie of iniquity, the cunning working of Satan, to draw out of the mind to follow him, from the pure life, and to veil over the Juſt One from beholding the Preſence of the Lord. But glory be to the Lord, who hath made him manifeſt in thouſands of his, in this Day of His Power, When we were ſeparated, we ſpake one and the ſame thing, being guided by one Spirit. They would go from me to Catharine, they would bid her ſpeak as Sarah did; and ſo ſhe did to their condemnation: Praiſes to the Lord, Amen.
A Paper ſent from them to the Pope’s Lord Inquiſitor in Malta.
For the Lord Inquiſitor and his Council, &c;
Mens perſons I cannot admire; they that do admire and respect any man’s perſon, do it becauſe of advantage; and ſuch are tranſgreſſors, the Apoſtles (St. James and Jude) ſay.
In obedience to the Lord, in love to your ſouls, from the Fountain of Love, and Springs of Life that ſtream forth to the refreſhment of the whole City of God, am I conſtrained to viſit you with theſe few Lines; and I beſeech you to read it with the Spirit of Moderation and Meekneſs, and see that nothing in you ariſe up againſt it, for it is God’s Truth.
Chriſt Jeſus who is the Light of the world, which hath enlightned every one that cometh into the world, ſaith, This is Life eternal, To know thee the onely true God, and Jeſus Chriſt whom thou haſt ſent. 40 F4v 850 40 sent. Now the knowledge of God is Life Eternal; and there is no other way to come to this knowledge, but to have the mind turned from darkneſs to the Light, out of the viſible, to that which is inviſible, viz. the Light in the Conſcience, which convinceth of ſin and iniquity, when no mortal eye can ſee you; and as you come to love it, and to have your minds ſtaid upon it, you will feel the incomes of God’s Power to adminiſter condemnation upon the tranſgreſſor, that keeps the pure Seed in bondage in you; For Sion is redeemed through Judgement, and her Converts with Righteouſneſs.
Saint Paul ſaith, If thou believeſt in thy heart the Lord Jeſus, and confeſſeſt with thy mouth that God hath raiſed him from the dead, thou ſhalt be ſaved; for with the heart man believeth unto ſalvation; and we do believe, and ſee, and taſte, and handle of the good Word of Life, and have received the Spirit of Truth, to lead us into all truth, and doth bring all things to our remembrance, without any viſible thing. And Saint Paul wrote to the Galatians, ſaying, My little Children, of whom I travel in birth till Chriſt be formed in you. Where Chriſt is formed within, there needs no form without; the outward form is called an Earthen Veſſel, or an Earthen Tabernacle, or an Earthen House; but Chriſt Jeſus is the expreſs Image of his Father’s Glory (or Subſtance) which is Light and Life.
Now the Image of Chriſt is a pure and holy Image, a meek and a Dove like Image, an innocent and Lamb-like Image, a righteous and a glorious Image, Chriſt in you the hope of glory, ſaith the Apoſtle to the Saints.
The Lord our God hath given to every man a meaſure of the manifeſtation of his own Spirit ot profit withall, which is the Light in the Conſcience, the true Teacher of his People; it is the Grace of God that bringeth ſalvation, that appeareth to all men, and it teacheth all that come, to believe in it, and to love, and to be guided by it, to deny all ungodlineſs and worldy luſts, and to walk ſoberly, righteouſly, holy and godly in this preſent world; and it will deal plainly with every one; none need to fear being deceived by that in them which doth condemn them for ſin and evil: But they that live in pride, are deceived already; they that live in covetouſness, are deceived already; and they that live in Luſts or Drunkenneſs, are deceived already; or in Lying, Swearing, Adultery or Idolatry, are deceived; or in Hypocriſie and Deceit, hard heartedness or Cruelty, they are deceived already; for thoſe you 41 G1r 851 41 you know, are fruits which do proceed from a deceived heart, being corrupted for want of knowledge: My people periſh for want of knowledge (ſaith God) He that hath not the ſpirit of Chriſt, is none of his, and he that hath the Spirit of Chriſt, ought himſelf to walk as Chriſt walked: Now Chriſt was no perſecutor, he never impriſoned any, nor ever put any to ſuffer, but he and the holy Prophets and Apoſtles were made to ſuffer as evil-doers, this we know.
The Day of the Lord is hot and terrible againſt all ſin and iniquity, and that nature from whence it doth proceed; and we are a Wo for all them that are laying up of a Fuel for it: This is God’s Truth, whether you can receive it, yea or nay, I am ready to ſeal it with my blood, if the Lord shall call me to it.
Whosoever ſhall interpret this Paper before the Lord Inquisitor, (ſo called) I charge thee in the Name of the living God, as thou wilt anſwer before his dreadful preſence, to interpret it word by word, as it is written, without adding or diminiſhing.
The Fryar then came to me, and askt me, why I did not work? I said unto him, What Work dost thou do? he said he did write. I told him I would write too, if he would bring me a Pen, Ink and Paper; and I would write truth. He said, He would not that we ſhould write; for St. Paul did work at Rome, and we might get nine or ten grains a day, if we would knit, that is three half pence. I told him, if we could have that priviledge amongſt them, that St. Paul had at Rome under Cæſar, which was a Heatheniſh King, we would have wrought, and not have been chargeable to any. St. Paul lived in his own hired Houſe two years, with a Souldier to look to him and had friends of the ſame Occupation to work with him, and could send where he would, and whoſoever would come to him, might, and he taught them in the Name of the Lord Jeſus, and no man forbad him. So I askt him, Whether he knew the holy War of God, yea or nay? if he did, I told him he then did know we could not be without exerciſe day nor night. Then his mouth G was 42 G1v 852 42 was stopped, and he ſpake no more to me of work: But though our affliction of body was very great, and our travel of ſoul was greater, yet we did knit Stockins, and gave to them that were made serviceable to us, and did make Garments for the poor priſoners, and mended their Clothes which had need, and were made helpful to them all, to their condemnation, that did perſecute us. But we could not work at the Fryar’s Will, nor any man’s else, but as we had freedom in the Lord.
As I was weak in my bed, the Fryar came to me, and ſaid, We did deny the Scriptures: I told him, they did deny them, we did own them, and hold them forth, thou doſt know it: He was in a rage because I ſaid, they denyed the Scriptures, bid me eat my words again, and threatned death upon me. I ſaid, Chriſt Jeſus was the Light of the World, and had lighted every one that cometh into the World, which Light is our ſalvation that do receive it, and the ſame Light is the World’s condemnation that do not believe in it. Then he ſaid, He would lay me in Chains, where I ſhould neither ſee Sun nor Moon. They ſay The Father hath almost killed you, ſaid he, but I will kill you quite, before I have done. He had a Book in his hand, and he did ſtudy in it; I told him he did comprehend the Words in his carnal mind; and he was wrath, and ſaid he would give me to the Devils to be tormented. I ſaid, I deny the Devil and all his Works and Workers.
Some would come unto the Priſon upon their Saints days, and ask us what day it was? We did anſwer, We did not know, neither did we obſerve dayes nor times, months nor years. Then anſwer would be made, It was St. Joſeph’s day, or ſome other Saint; and St. Joſeph ſhould puniſh us that night, because we did not observe his day. We anſwered, We did know the Saints to be at peace with us, and we did not fear them. We further ſaid, St. Paul did call it beggarly Elements and Rudiments of the World, to obſerve days, times, months and years; and their mouths would be ſtopt for a time. Then came the Fryar another time, and told me, it was seventeen dayes to their Chriſtmas; and said, the Virgin Mary conceived with child that day, being the ſame day he ſpake to me on; as if ſhe did go with Child but ſeventeen dayes. And he ſaid, the next day was Lady Ann’s day, the Virgin Mary’s Mother, a Saint.I was 43 G2r 853 43
Then as I was crying to the Lord in Prayer because of our longſuffering, & our ſtrong travel & labour & no fruit (as did appear) the Lord ſaid unto me, Be not grieved, though Iſrael be not gathered; the ſeed of Malta shall be as the ſtars of the skie for multitude: That which ye have ſown, shall not dye, but live: Glory be to the Name of the Lord for ever.
A Copy of a Writing from their hands, ſent in purſuit after the Fryar.
Thou ſaidſt thou wouldſt try whether we had the true Spirit yea or nay, and thou hast tryed day and night, but thou never triedſt the right way; the Seed of God is not tryed with deceit, lying, hypocriſie, nor cruelty: But if thou hadſt turned in with thy mind to the Light of God in thy Conſcience, thou wouldſt ſoon have known us; or had the love of Chriſt been ſhed abroad in thy heart, thou might’ſt have comprehended us; or hadſt thou found the Ballance of the Sanctuary of the true Tabernacle, which God hath pitched, and not man, thou might’ſt have weighed us; or hadſt thou laid Judgement to the Line, and Righteouſneſs to the Plummet, thou might’ſt have fathomed us; or could’ſt thou have opened the Book of Life, thou might’ſt have read us; or hadſt thou went into the Houſe of Iſrael, thou might’ſt have had fellowſhip with us, &c; Contrary to our wills were we caſt in amongſt you, and have given our teſtimony for the Lord, and called you all to repentance, and have forewarned you of the evil the Lord is bringing upon you; but you have ſlighted the day of your viſitation, and have done deſpite to the Spirit of Grace, and have caſt many hard speeches and falſe aſperſions upon the Truth, and the Meſſengers thereof, and the Lord will viſit for theſe things; and you have blinded your eyes that you will not ſee, and ſtopped your ears that you might not hear, and hardened your hearts that you might not underſtand; leaſt you ſhould ſee with your eyes, and hear with your ears, and underſtand with your hearts, and turn to the Lord, and be converted, and he ſhould heal you. Oh that you had known in this your day, what had belonged to your peace; but now it is hid from your eyes. The desire of our ſouls is, That G2 every 44 G2v 854 44 every one may repent that can find a place; and whatever you have done to us, we deſire it may not be laid to your charge; for we count our ſelves happy that we were found worthy to suffer for the Name of the Lord.
Katharine Evans. Sarah Chevers.
Behold victorious Hymns, Songs, Praiſes, all in Verſe, the ſame ſprung from the Seed of Life, its perfect Righteousneſs.
Oh Lord my life is given up,
thy truth for to declare;
Lord keep me in thy Arms,
and guide me in thy fear.
Thy Bow is bent, thy Sword is drawn
thy enemies to deface,
Thy fire’s kindl’d ’gainſt all thoſe
that Truth wil not embrace.
Thine Arrows ſharp and keen,
upon their heads ſhall fall,
Thy double-edged Sword alſo,
to cut them down withall.
So plague the Heathen, & correct
the people in thy wrath,
That they may fear & dread thy Name
and come to know thy truth.
Throughout the World ſo wide,
thy truth thou doſt declare,
Thy ſaving health for to enjoy,
by thy Light doth appear.
Thou doſt ſend forth thy Meſſengers.
glad tydings to proclaim,
To call the hungry forth to feed
on thy Lamb being ſlain.
Feasts of fat things thou doſt prepare
the hungry for to feed,
And cloath the nak’d with Garments fair.
that want and ſtand in need.
Heaven’s glory is appearing,
its brightneſs ſhineth forth,
Over all Nations it is clearing,
the Lords Eternal Truth.
Every one that’s in darkneſs,
and under its ſhadow lye,
May come forth into the brightneſs .
out of obscurity.
Oh Lord teach me thy wayes,
that I may walk therein,
And lead me in thy Path of life,
and cleanſe me from all ſin,
How gracious is our God,
and kind to Iſrael,
With us he doth make his Abode .
his preſence doth us fill.So 45 G3r 855 45
So that we are not deſolate,
nor yet diſtreſt with woes,
Becauſe the Lord doth take our part.
and doth confound our foes,
Every one that is oppreſt
and caſt in danger deep,
If that in God they put their trust,
he will them ſafely keep.
Right dear and precious to the Lord
are all his little ones,
That ſuffer for his holy Name,
he will avenge their wrongs,
And in his wrath he will deſtroy
his enemies ſo ſtout,
And ſuddenly will make a way,
and lead his ſervants out.
And he himſelf will them reſtore
to joy and comfort both,
And will preſerve them evermore,
becauſe they do him love.
But as for men of corrupt minds
whose wayes defiled are,
The Lord will viſit with all kinds
of judgments, and not ſpare.
He will pursue them with his Sword,
and cut them to the ground,
That do reject his holy Word,
his Plagues ſhall them confound.
Becauſe that they do not obey
his Mercies and his Grace,
Which he ſo free to them doth give
they would them embrace.
But as their Fathers did,
ſo they requite the Lord with wrong,
And perſecute thy Meſſengers,
and make them ſuffer long
Becauſe that they the Truth declare
as Scripture telleth plain,
That Chriſt himself, the Lord’s own Heir,
is come, and he will reign
Both Lord, and Prince, and King also,
throughout the World that’s wide,
And Antichrist will overthrow,
and Babel in her pride:
It’s not their golden Candleſticks,
nor Lamps that be ſo many,
That can ſhine through the
Clouds ſo thick,
to give a Light to any.
To lead to a true reſting-place,
where they may ſtill behold
The beauty of God’s glorious face,
more bright than fined Gold.
Thou seeſt oh Lord, what man hath done
for to exalt himſelf
Againſt the Lord thy bleſſed Son,
who is our ſaving health.
They have changed his glorious Form
and Image that’s ſo bright,
And faſhion’d it like ſinful man,
corrupted in thy ſight,Ariſe 46 G3v 856 46
Ariſe oh Lord, ariſe in haste,
and puniſh for theſe things,
Theſe men that have ſought thy diſgrace,
that they might reign as Kings
Over thine own Inheritance,
contrary to thy will,
To keep them ſtill in ignorance,
without knowledge or skill.
But now the God of Power is come,
to raiſe up Sion bright,
And to build up Jeruſalem
in all the Heathens ſight.
The Gates of Hell ſhall not prevail,
though they be wide & strong,
Againſt the gathering in of all
that to the Lord belong.
All glory, honor, laud and praiſe
be to the Lord of Might,
Who hath made known in theſe our dayes,
his Way, his Truth, his Light.
Concerning the Croſs of Chriſt, which is not a viſible sign, or a piece of Wood, but the inviſible and immortal Power of the Lord God, and his Wiſdom unto ſalvation, to and in all them that believe, is the ſame Chriſt, the Power of God, and the wiſdom of God: But the ſame Croſſe is to the outward Jew, (or Chriſtian) a ſtumbling- block, and to the wiſe Greek (that’s exalted and puft up in the knowledge above, and over the meek life) fooliſhneſs, as ſaith the Scripture, I Cor. I. 18, 19.
Chriſt’s Croſs I do embrace,
Which gives me an entrance into Grace;
Sin and Death it doth deface,
And makes me run a glorious race,
A Crown of Life and Grace I do obtain,
And ſin and death is daily ſlain;
And Chriſt himself alone to reign
Through the Croſs I do obtain.
The Croſs of Chriſt is more to me
Than all the Treasures I can ſee:
It brings me to my resting place
For to behold God’s lovely face.
The Croſs of Chriſt is Power indeed
Againſt the Serpent and his ſeed.
And ſalvation it doth bring
To all that do believe therein.The 47 G4r 857 47
The Croſs of Chriſt is my delight,
It doth uphold me day and night:
It keeps me from the power of ſin,
Through Chriſt who is my Heavenly King.
Without the Croſs I cannot be
From ſin and death at all ſet free.
The Croſs alone doth crucifie
Tranſgreſſion, ſin, iniquity.
It doth break down the middle Wall,
And ſlays the enmity withall:
And makes of twain one perefect man,
And ſo renews Chriſt for me again.
The Croſs of Chriſt it doth deſtroy
That Nature that doth diſobey
In thoſe that do themſelves deny,
And take it up moſt willingly,
And daily bear it after him,
Who is our Lord, and Prince, and King;
And not at all to let it down,
Till they come to enjoy the Crown.
The Croſs of Chriſt is power and life,
It doth deſtroy all mortal ſtrife;
It keepeth from the Power of ſin,
All thoſe that love to walk therein.
All that do own Chriſt Jeſus Croſs,
Through ſelf-denial they muſt paſs,
For to be purged from their ſin,
And no longer live therein.
The Croſs of Chriſt doth operate
Through every vein and vital part,
The heart and reins to cleanſe from ſin,
Of them that’s exercis’d therein.
They that live in sin and wicedness,
are enemies to Chriſt Jeſus Croſs;
For all ſin and uncleanneſs
doth pierce the Life of Chriſt Jeſus.
Perfect Love, and breathings of undefiled Life, to the Seed of God, greeting.
The ſtreams of beauty, pure and bright,
That ſpringeth up both day and night.
My love to truth doth me conſtrain
In Priſon ever to remain;
If it be ſo that even I
Cannot in truth be ſet at liberty.
My deare Redeemer’s face ſo
Doth ſhine upon me day & night:
His count’nance doth exceed all
Captivity and bodage, thrall,
It cometh from a harmleſs Dove,
Within whose breaſts doth still remain
God’s perfect praiſes to maintain.
I have not time nor place to ſhow
The love which from my ſoul doth flow.
The bleſſing of the Almighty be upon thee,
And upon the whole Iſrael of
These Writings following are Copies of divers Letters which they had written to their Friends and near Relations in the time of my viſitation of them: But it came ſo to paſs, that as they were handing the ſame through the Grate of the Prison, by the hand of another man to be communicated to my hand, being then preſent in the Room alſo, that the ſaid Letters were intercepted, and in the firſt place communicated to the Pope’s Lord Inquiſitor, and he forthwith ſent for the Conſul, and charged him to get the ſame truly copied forth. Then the Conſul was wrath with me that he ſhould be exerciſed with ſo much trouble: But in the Light and Counſel of my God I ſeeing and knowing that there was nothing in them but what came from a good ground of innocency and truth, and pure natural affection, I was moved in bowels of tender love, leſt the ſaid Letters ſhould be finally miſcarried, or ſhut up in obſcurity, therefore I pro- 49 H1r 859 49 propounded to the Conſul, If that were ſuch a trouble to him, if he would let me have the Letters, I ſhould copy them out truly. And after ſome time he conſented, and gave them into my hand, and laid it upon my Conſcience to perform as I had ſaid, which I did with gladneſs of heart, not in ſubmission to his Will, but in obedience to the God of Love and Peace which guided me in the ſame; and so after I had finiſhed them, I gave the fair Copies into the Conſul’s hands for his Lord Inquiſitor.
And ſo in the wisdom of the Lord, which is wiſer than the Serpents, I obtained the very deſire of my heart for his Truth and Peoples ſake, and retained the Original Copies, and in the endleſs Love and Power of the Lord Almighty, which was, and is with me, and accompanied me (bleſſed and magnified be the Power of his excellent Majeſty and Glory, Amen) over the heads of the lofty Mountains, and barren Hills, I brought the Treaſures of a bleſſed and good ground away with this body in which I am; ſo that they were not onely in my hands, but alſo the precious subſtance and virtue of the ſame that accompanied them, even in my heart, within my boſom; and the Words of Wiſdoms Life did I wear as a Chain of precious Stones and Diamonds about my neck, and as Bracelets and Ornaments of a comely and delicate chaſte Bride, about my hands and loins; and behold the Almighty Lord and King of Eterenal Life, that had ſo mightily preſerved me in the ſhadow of his hand of Almightineſs, which ſtopt the mouths of devouring Lyons, and chained and limited the ravening and devouring wild Beaſts of the Forreſt, even he the King of bleſſedness and endleſs glory, filled my heart with his ſpotless and unexpreſſible Love: And as I lay upon the deck of the Veſſel in which I was a paſſenger, and a ſtranger among men of many and divers Nations, in the morning of the day I felt and beheld the exceeding glory of the Lord under the ſecret ſhadow of his Almightineſs, in a Viſion of God; and in the ſame I beheld the Bride, the Lamb’s Wife, prepared for the Bridegroom’s coming; and why ſhould not I declare ſomewhat of the felicity that mine eye in the Eternal Life of Bleſſedness ſaw, albeit the reſt is unutterable which I felt, and know how to be ſilent in the Father’s presence, where every Babe knoweth my voice, which is to give a ſound in their ears to whom I write; and not to ſpread H Pearls 50 H1v 860 50 Pearls before Swine, that will defile and trample on them; That mine eye, mine eye hath ſeen, and perfectly beheld the Free-born from above, coming out of the Wilderneſs, covered with goodly and comely Raiment, white and clean, as the light of the Sun, or as a Stone moſt precious, clear as Chryſtal, and mine eye beheld a Crown which was embraced in the Arms of the Bridegroom, and the Crown was well adorned with many Stars which did excel each other in glory, and mine eye beheld the Son as a Bride groom rejoicing over the Virgin-Bride of his Eſpouſal, ſo that I was even ſick with pure and undefiled love. Mine eye, mine eye did ſo affect my heart, ſo that I awaked in the ſame, in the morning of a clear day, and I looked, and behold the Sun was ariſen above the Horizon of the Earth and Waters, and my Life abundantly bleſſed and magnified the living Lord, my King and my God, the Rock of my ſtrength, and ſaving-health of his Annointed, and behold I had seen a Viſion of God in the morning-Light, and the ſweet ſolution of the same was given me to treaſure up within my very heart, till an appointed time and ſeaſon; the children of the Morning-light may right-well read the ſame as they ſit together in their ſeveral places that’s over and above the earth, and be comforted and refreshed at the joyful ſound of the ſame voice that brings the glad tydings of the good things; yea and my Spirit with you the bleſſed of the Lord, ſhall bleſs his Name who is the mighty God in the midſt of us: Even ſo Amen, Ha- le-lu-jah.
Praiſe ye the Lord, Salvation to
Ye Saints in Life,
Free from all ſtrife,
Your voice ſound forth the ſame
My Life ſhall ſing
To Sion’s King,
His Love in peace and glory,
Who hath ſo free
Into his Life that’s holy.
Among his Saints & Meſſengers,
His fame my heart ſhall ſound,
Becauſe their life
is free from ſtrife,
In love that doth abound.
My prayers in the life that’s clean,
ſhall from the ſame aſcend.
Unto the God of Love and peace,
that he may you defend.To 51 H2r 861 51
To perfect love and unity,
that it may more abound;
for ſo your fame
in his pure Name
Doth give a certain ſound.
Unto the Nations round about,
your fame aloud shall ſing,
to call them all
both great and ſmall
To bow to Sion’s King.
Your Gates alwayes
(Of perfect praiſe)
Full wide ſhall open ſtand,
that all may come
i’th free born Son
(Th’ Light) to dwel in your Land
Of reſt and peace
I’th living way thats holy;
ſo you ſhall ſing,
and fruit ſhall ſpring
Within the City holy.
The Vine that’s true,
ſhall compaſs you
That ſit under his ſhade,
with great delight
in his clear ſight,
None ſhal make you afraid.
Within the perfect love here is no fear,
So in the Father’s sight you are right dear.
My bowels and my ſoul, my very heart
To you ye living Saints extends;
much could I write
in the true light,
But ye can read my Friends.
Without a Book of words
Which finally may end;
My mind that’s clean,
Come read the ſame,
Behold I am your friend.
In Jacob’s Land
Where he did ſtand.
I’th place that’s bleſt,
Where he did reſt,
Who like a Prince prevail’d
with the true Lord of Might,
Who also bleſſed him
even in the morning-Light,
And ſeeing that it happened ſo, that the Copies of the Letters of the Lords Priſoners, were left in the hands of their Enemies, in a ſtrange Land, it is ſeen meet to inſert them among the reſt of their Writings, for the good of many of their own Nation of England, who may right well favour the tender love and virtue of true and pure natural affection, not onely to their kindred and Fathers Houſe, but also to their own Countrey; all of which they were truly called to forſake, as was good old Abraham our Father, H2 who 52 H2v 862 52 who in obedience to the good Word and Commandment of the Almighty God, went forth, not knowing whither he went, even as theſe poor, and many more, who are deemed by the wiſe of this would, fooliſh things, not well conſidering how that the Lord hath choſen the poor of this world, and made them rich in faith, and also chuſeth baſe things, and weak things, and fooliſh things, to confound the things that are mighty, and to bring to nought things that are, to the end that no fleſh ſhould glory in his preſence, who with his mighty hand and outſtretched arm of Dignity and excellent Power, is defacing and ſtaining the pride of all glory, and bringing into contempt all the honorable of the Earth that’s out of order, and bringing down the haughtineſs and loftineſs of man, who ſhall know that it is the everlaſting and terrible God of Eternity, when he ariſeth to ſhake terribly the Earth, that preſſeth down and oppreſſeth the Seed of his Bowels, and trampleth on the principal Wheat that came out of the good Husband-mans right hand; for which the God of Heaven is viſiting the Nations as in the ancient days: Albeit he hath long time held his peace in the habitation of his Holineſs, where his Honor dwelleth; but behold, behold, he is ariſing in the greatneſs of his ſtrength, even as a Lyon over his prey, or as a Lyonneſs bereaved of her young; for out of Sion hath he uttered his voice, and thundered forth the Majesty of his powerful Word of Salvation, through the Gate of his beloved City Jerusalem from on high, free-born; which hath ecchoed into the ears & hearts of the Hypocrites, & ſurprized the double-minded with fear on every hand; for he hath cryed, and yet will, in the spirit of his Propheſie through his Sons and Daughters, in whom he which is holy dwelleth, to make waſte Mountains and Hills, and to devour at once as in the ancient dayes; and my ſpirit ſaith, E ven ſo the Lord hasten it (Amen) for his Elects ſake.
Katharine Evans to her Husband and Children.
For the hand of John Evans, my right dear and precious Husband, with my tender-hearted Children, who are more dear and precious unto me, than the apple of mine eye.
Moſt dear and faithful Husband, Friend and Brother, begotten of my Eternal Father, of the immortal Seed of the Covenant of Light, Life and Bleſſedneſſe, I have unity and fellowſhip with thee day and night, to my great refreſhment and continual comfort, praiſes, praiſes be given to our God for evermore, who hath joined us together in that which neither Sea nor Land can ſeparate or divide.
My dear heart, my ſoul doth dearly ſalute thee, with my dear and precious Children, which are dear and precious in the Light of the Lord, to thy endleſs joy; and my everlaſting comfort; glory be to our Lord God eternally, who hath called you with a holy Calling, and hath cauſed his Beauty to ſhine upon you in this the day of his Power, wherein he is making up of his jewels, and binding up of his faithful ones in the Bond of everlaſting Love and Salvation, among whom he hath numbred you of his own free Grace; in which I beſeech you (dear hearts) in the fear of the Lord to abide in your meaſures, according to the mainifeſtation of the Revelation of the Son of God in you; keep a diligent watch over every thought, word and action, and let your minds be ſtaid continually in the Light, where you will find out the ſnares and baits of Satan, and be preſerved out of his Traps, Nets and Pits, that you may not be captivated by him at his will. Oh my dear Husband and Children, how often have I poured out my ſoul to our everlaſting Father for you, with Rivers of tears, night and day, that you might be kept pure and ſingle in the ſight of our God, improving your Talents as wiſe Virgins, having Oyl in your Veſſels, and your Lamps burning, and cloathed with the long white Robes of Righteouſneſs, ready to enter the Bed-Chamber, and to ſup with the Lamb 54 H3v 864 54 Lamb, and to feed at the Feaſt of fat things, where your ſouls may be nouriſhed, refreſhed, comforted, and ſatisfied, never to hunger again.
My dear hearts, you do not want teaching, you are in a Land of Bleſſedneſs, which floweth with Milk and Honey, among the faithful Stewards, whoſe mouths are opened wide in righteouſneſs, to declare the Eternal Myſteries of the everlaſting Kingdom, of the endleſs joys and eternal glory, whereinto all the willing and obedient ſhall enter, and be bleſſed for ever.
My dear hearts, the promiſes of the Lord are large, and are all Yea and Amen to thoſe that fear his Name; he will comfort the Mourners in Sion, and will cauſe the heavy-hearted in Jeruſalem to rejoice, becauſe of the glad tydings; they that do bear the Croſs with patience, ſhall wear the Crown with joy; for it is through the long-ſuffering and patient waitings, the Crown of Life and Immortality comes to be obtained; the Lord hath exerciſed my patience, and tryed me to the uttermoſt, to his praiſe and my eternal comfort, who hath not been wanting to in any thing in his own due time; We are Witneſſes he can provide a Table in the Wilderneſs both ſpiritual and temporal. Oh the endleſs love of our God, who is an everlaſting Fountain of all living refreſhment; whoſe Chryſtal ſtreams never ceaſe running to every thirſty ſoul, that breatheth after the ſprings of Life and Salvation.
In our deepeſt affliction, when I looked for every breath to be the laſt, I could not wiſh I had not come over Seas, becauſe I knew it was my Eternal Father’s Will to prove me, with my dear and faithful Friend; in all afflictions and miſeries, the Lord remembered mercy, and did not leave nor forſake us, nor ſuffer his faithfulneſs to fail us, but cauſed the ſweet drops of his mercy to diſtil upon us, and the brightneſs of his glorious countenance to ſhine into our hearts, and was never wanting to us in Revelations nor Viſions. Oh how may I do to ſet forth the fulneſs of God’s Love to our ſouls! No tongue can expreſs it, no heart can conceive it; nor mind can comprehend it. Oh the raviſhments, the raptures, the glorious bright-ſhining countenance of our Lord God, who is our fulneſs in emptineſs, our ſtrength in weakneſs, our health in ſickness, our life in death, our joy in ſorrow, our peace in diſquietneſs, our praiſe in heavineſs, our power in all needs or neceſſities; He alone is a full God unto us, and to all that can truſt him; he hath emptied us of our ſelves, and hath unbottomed us of our ſelves, and hath wholly built us upon the ſure Founda865tion, 55 H4r 865 55 tion, the Rock of Ages, Chriſt Jeſus the Light of the world, where the ſwelling Seas, nor raging, foaming Waves, nor ſtormy winds, though they beat vehemently, cannot be able to remove us; Glory, honor and praiſes is to our God for ever, who out of his everlaſting Treaſures doth fill us with his Eternal Riches day by day; he did nouriſh our ſouls with the choiceſt of his mercies, and doth feed our bodies with his good Creatures, and relieve all our neceſſities in a full meaſure, praiſes, praiſes be to him alone, who is our everlaſting portion, our confidence, and our rejoicing, whom we ſerve acceptably with reverence and God-like fear; for our God is a conſuming fire.
Oh my dear Husband and precious Children, you may feel the iſſues of Love and Life which ſtream forth as a River to every ſoul of you, from a heart that is wholly joined to the Fountain; my prayers are for you day and night without ceaſing, beſeeching the Lord God of Power to pour down his tender mercies upon you, and to keep you in his pure fear, and to encreaſe your faith, to confirm you in all righteouſneſs, and ſtrengthen you in believing in the Name of the Lord God Almighty, that you may be eſtabliſhed as Mount Sion, that can never be moved. Keep your ſouls unſpotted of the world, and love one another with a pure heart, fervently ſerve one another in love; build up another in the Eternal, and bear one anothers burdens for the Seeds ſake, and ſo fulfil the Law of God. This is the Word of the Lord unto you, my dearly beloved.
Dear hearts, I do commit you into the hands of the Almighty, who dwelleth on high, and to the Word of his Grace in you, who is able to build you up to everlaſting life, and eternal ſalvation. By me who am thy dear and precious Wife, and Spouſe, in the Marriage of the Lamb, in the bed unndefiled,
My dearly beloved Yoak-mate in the Work of our God, doth dearly ſalute you; Salute us dearly to our precious Friends in all places. I do believe we ſhall ſee your faces again with joy. Dearly ſalute us to T.H. K.S. and his ſiſter, S.B. and his daughter, N.M. and his dear Wife, with all the reſt of our dear Friends in Briſtol. T.C. and his dear Wife and Daughter, and all Friends in Briſtol or elſe-where. J.G. and his precious Wife, Children and Servants, with all Friends. Our dear love to E.H. with her Husband and Children at Alderberry.
The original of this was written in the Inquiſition in Malta, in 1661-11the 11th Month of the year 1661.
Sarah Chevers to her Husband and Children.
My Dear Husband, my love, my life is given up to ſerve the living God, and to obey his pure Call in the meaſure of the manifeſtation of his Love, Light, Life and Spirit of Chriſt Jeſus, his onely begotten Son, whom he hath manifeſted in me and thouſands, by the brightneſs of his appearing, to put an end to ſin and Satan, and bring to light Immortality through the preaching of the everlaſting Goſpel by the Spirit of Propheſie, which is poured out upon the ſons and daughters of the living God, according to his purpoſe, whereof he hath choſen me, who am the leaſt of all; but God who is rich in mercy, for his own Name ſake hath paſſed by mine offences, and hath counted me worthy to bear teſtimony to his holy Name before the mighty men of the Earth. Oh the love of the Lord to my ſoul! my tongue cannot expreſs, neither hath it entered into the heart of man to conceive of the things that God hath laid up for them that fear him.
Therefore doth my ſoul breath to my God for thee and my Children, night and day, that your minds may be joined to the Light of the Lord Jeſus, to lead you out of Satans Kingdom, into the Kingdom of God, where we may enjoy one another in the Life Eternal, where neither Sea nor Land can ſeparate; in which Light and Life do I ſalute thee my dear Husband, with my Children, wiſhing you to embrace Gods love in making his Truth ſo clearly manifeſt amongſt you, whereof I am a Witneſs even of the everlaſting Fountain that hath been opened by the Meſſengers of Chriſt, who preach to you the Word of God in ſeaſon, and out of ſeaſon, directing you where you may find your Saviour to purge and cleanſe you from your ſins, and to reconcile you to his Father, and to have unity with him and all the Saints, in the Light, that ye may be fellow- Citizens in the Kingdom of Glory, Reſt and Peace, which Chriſt hath purchaſed for them that love him, and obey him: What profit is there for to gain the whole world, and loſe your own ſouls? Seek firſt the King867dom 57 I1r 867 57 dom of God, and the Righteouſneſs thereof, and all other things ſhall be added to you; Godlineſs is great gain, having the promiſe of this life that now is, and that which is to come; which is fulfilled to me, who have taſted of the Lords endleſſe love and mercies to my soul, & from a moving of the ſame love and life do I breath to thee my dear Husband, with my Children; my dear love ſalutes you all; my Prayers to my God are for you all, that your minds may be joined to the Light wherewith you are lightened, that I may enjoy you in that which is Eternal, and have community with you in the Spirit: He that is joined to the Lord, is one ſpirit, one heart, one mind, one ſoul, to ſerve the Lord with one conſent. I cannot by Pen or Paper ſet forth the large love of God in fulfilling his gracious promiſes to me in the Wilderneſs, being put into priſon for God’s Truth, there to remain all days of my life, being ſearched, tryed, examined upon pain of death among the Enemies of God and his Truth; ſtanding in jeopardy for my life, until the Lord had ſubdued and brought them under by his mighty Power, and made them to feed us, and would have given us money or clothes; but the Lord did deck our Table richly in the Wilderneſs; the day of the Lord is appearing, wherein he will diſcover every deed of darkneſs, let it be done never ſo ſecret; the light of Chriſt Jeſus will make it manifeſt in every Conſcience; the Lord will rip up all coverings that is not of his own Spirit. The God of Peace be with you all. Amen.
I do not well remember that this was one of the surprized Letters.
A Letter to a Kinſwoman of S.C.
My dear Kinſwoman, I dearly ſalute thee, with thy Husband, and thy tender Babes: I am not unmindful of thee, nor of thy love that thou ſhewedſt to me; I know thou ſhalt not loſe thy reward; thou haſt found refreſhment in it; for it was of the Lord; My Burthen was weighty for the Lord; I would have fled the Croſs; but praiſes be to the Lord that kept me to it, that I might not loſe the Crown. I was ſtraitned in it, till I gave up to it; praiſed be the Name of our God for ever Amen. Stand faſt in the Lord; let none take thy Crown. The God of Power preſerve and keep thee low and ſingle in his fear, preſſing forward to the prize of an incorruptible Crown of Glory, Peace and Reſt, out of all ſtrife. Keep to the pure life, watch the Enemy; keep thy mind ſtaid in the meaſure of God’s Grace, that is able to make thee wiſe unto ſalvation, and to give thee an inheritance with the reſt of the Children of Light. My tender lamb, fear and dread the living God; keep in his preſence, go not out to let in the Enemy, to break thy peace and to darken thy underſtanding, and to vail over the pure, from beholding thy Saviour: Incline thine ear to him, give up to a daily Croſs to thy own will: Stand ſingle, empty; wait upon the Lord to be fill’d with his fulneſs; let him be all thy treaſure, ask of him, he giveth liberally. Believe, and thou ſhalt receive; his promiſe is large, I have found it ſo. Having nothing, yet enjoying all things, I have taſted, handled and felt of his everlaſting love, and indurable Riches; my life is wrapt up in it; I have found him whom my ſoul loveth; Oh what might I do to ſet him forth! He is the choiceſt of ten thouſands, therefore doth my ſoul love him:
My life is given up for him, his truth for to declare;
Lord guide me in thy path, and keep me in thy fear.
Thy dear Aunt: My dear love and life is with thee, and I do embrase thee in the Arms and Bosom of my Eternal Father’s love, with thy dear Husband and little ones.
Another in the ſame Paper to Friends.
My dearly beloved Siſters and Friends of Truth, I dearly ſalute you in the Light, Life and Love of our God, which is ſhed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghoſt, wherein I do rejoice, and have union with you. My Life is given up to ſerve the Lord. O how my ſoul travels for the Seed of God’s Kingdom to be ſown throughout all Nations, for the gathering in of Chriſt’s ſcattered Flock, and for the deſtruction of ſin and Satan. For our God is weighing the Mountains in Skales, and the Duſt in an equal an Ballance: He is pulling down the mighty, and raiſing the meek, humble, lowly; he is a feeding the poor and hungry with good things, but the rich he ſends empty away. My dear Babes and Lambs, feed of the ſincere Milk of the Word of Life, that you may grow up in it, and wax ſtrong in ſpirit to praiſe the Lord and to glorifie him who is worthy. Be ſtrong in the Lord, and in the Power of his Might; ſeek him earneſtly, call upon him continually; let your whole Meditations be ſtaid in him alway. Seek him earneſtly, deny your own thoughts and words; give heed to the Light, bring all your deeds to it; give up all that is contrary, to be ſlain; ſtand ſingle, empty, naked before the Lord, that you may be fill’d with the ſtreams of his everlaſting Love. Oh my dear hearts! our God is full of love; ſtand not back, preſs forward, let nothing hinder you; the Lord calls for you, My Son, give me thy heart: The promiſe of our God is as large to you as to any, if you can believe your ſtraitneſs is in your ſelves; For God is a full Fountain; abundance of love runs forth to them that can truſt him, I can witneſs it; in the barren Wilderneſs he cauſed ſtreams of living water to break forth: I cannot expreſs it is ſo large; therefore doth my ſoul thirſt after you, my dear ones; the love of God is to you. My dear Siſters, I have you in my remembrance, and do pray to my God and your God, that you may be enlarged in your meaſures to praiſe the Lord, and to be kept in a ſenſible feeling of his power daily; and that you may I2 encreaſe 60 I2v 870 60 encreaſe in Wiſdom, Strength and Power over Gods Enemies. The Bleſſing of the Lord God Almighty be with you, and preſerve you by his Mighty Power, unto the coming of our Lord Jeſus Chriſt, Amen.
Salute me to my Siſter S.R. there is a tender Plant in her; I do feel it to my comfort, praiſes be to the Lord. I am in health I praiſe the Lord, and do want nothing; the Lord is my portion, I cannot want; he hath deck’t my Table richly, he hath annointed my head with Balm, it runneth down the skirts of my cloathing.
Your dear Siſter in the Lord, Sarah Cheevers.
Another from K.E. to her Husband and Children, with ſomewhat from both the Lords Priſoners, to Friends, the which was taken with the reſt of the Letters, in the Inquiſition, and copied out for their Lord Inquiſitor.
Dear husband, with my dear Children. I beſeech you together, to wait in the patience, having your minds alwayes ſtaid upon the Lord: Keep out of incumbrances, for that is the Enemies opportunity to ſtep in, when the mind is gone forth, and to vail the pure, and darken the underſtanding, and ſo hinder you of the pure enjoyment of the beholding the glory of God in the face of Jeſus Chriſt.
Take no more upon you then you are able to perform in the Spirit of moderation and meekneſs, for that is in the ſight of God of of great prize: See the Lord going before you in all your occcaſions that you may be proſperous in all you undertakings; wait diligently upon the Lord, to be ſeaſoned with his Grace, that you may come to a pure underſtanding of the moti871ons 61 I3r 871 61 ons of his Eternal Spirit, and to a true knowledge of the operation of his hands; So you will be able with all Saints, to comprehend what is the heigth, and the depth, and the length, and the breadth of the riches of his Grace and Love towards mankind in Chriſt Jeſus our Lord; Amen, saith my ſpirit: This is the counſel of the Lord unto you.
I do often remember M.H. I do deſire ſhe may be brought up in the fear of God, and want for nothing that is convenient for her; ſalute me to her dearly. I have been very ſenſible, dear Husband, of thine, and our Children, and many dear friends more, of your ſorrowful ſouls, mourning hearts, grieved ſpirits, troubled minds for us, as being Members of one body, Chriſt Jesus being our Head, we muſt needs ſuffer together, that we may rejoice together; a true ſorrow begets a true joy, a true Croſs a true Crown. We do believe it is our heavenly Fathers will and purpoſe to bring us back as ſafe to England, as ever he brought us thence, for his own glory, though we are ſome of the leaſt of Chriſt’s Flock, yet we do belong to the true Fold, and our Shepherd hath had as great a care of us, as he could have for any of his Lambs, and hath brought us through great affliction, praiſes be given to his glorious Name, of us, and you, and all that know him, for ever. Though we are abſent in body in the Will of God, from you, yet we are preſent in ſpirit in the Will of God, with you, and do receive the benefit of all your prayers daily, and do feel the Springs of Life that do ſtream from all the faithful hearted, to our great refreſhment and ſtrengthening.
After our money was gone, the Lord Inquiſitor, with the reſt in Authority, put a great allowance in one of their ſervants hands for our maintenance, becauſe we could take no money our ſelves; the Lord of Heaven did forbid us to meddle with any; and he did ſend to know whether we did want any clothes, he would ſend it to the Priſon to us: This was the large love of our God to us, and we were made contented with that we had, till the Lord God (who is rich in mercy, and full of all Grace, and is never unmindful of any which truſt in his Name) of his everlaſting love did ſend his faithful Meſſenger, whose feet are beautiful, and face is comely, cloathed with a bright ſhining Garment from the Crown of the head, to the ſole of the foot, and came in great power and ſtrength 62 I4r 872 62 ſtrength indeed, armed with the whole Armour of Light, and dreſt in the Majesty of the Moſt High, and being commiſſioned of the Higher Power, went to the Lord Inquiſitor to demand our lawful liberty, which would not be granted, exept we could get ſome Engliſh Merchants of Legorn or Meſſæna to engage four thousands Dollers that we ſhould never come into thoſe parts again; the Lord (who alone is our Life and Redeemer) moved our dear Brother to offer his own body to redeem ours, but it would not be received; then he offered to lay down his own dear and precious life for our liberty: Greater love can no man have, than to lay down his life for his Friend; the Lord will reſtore it into his boſom double; his ſervice can never be blotted out; his Name is called Daniel Baker; his outward being is near London, right dear and precious heart he is: The bleſſing, ſtrength, and power of the Almighty be upon him and his, and overſhadow them for ever, Amen. Greater comfort could never be adminiſtred to us in our conditions; Glory, honor and praiſe to our God for evermore, Amen.
This is a dear and ſweet Salutation in that which never changeth, fadeth away, nor waxeth old, from us whom the Lord hath counted worthy to bear his Name, and to ſuffer for his ſake, to all our Chriſtian Friends, Fathers and Elders, Pillars of Gods ſpiritual House, Brethren and Siſters in the Lord Jeſus Chriſt.
Oh my dear Husband, with our dear and precious Children, Lambs of God, and Babes of Chriſt, begotten of the Immortal Seed of Light, Life and Truth, with us, and all the whole Family of everlaſting bleſſedneſs.
Pray for us believingly; all things are poſſible with our God. So my Dearlings, in the arms of everlaſting love do I take my leave of you; the bleſſing and peace of the Moſt High be upon you ever, Amen, Amen.
Oh my dear Husband! praise the Lord that ever thou hadſt a Wife that was found worthy to ſuffer for the Name of the Lord Inaſmuch as I can underſtand the moving of the Spirit of God: My dear and faithful Yoke-fellow, Siſter and Friend, is worthy to 63 I4r 873 63 to be embraced of all friends for ever; the deeper the ſorrow, the greater the joy; the heavier the Croſs, the weightier the Crown, This was written in the Inquisition at Malta, of us
Katharine Evans, Sarah Chevers.
From K.E. for two Friends:
Dearly beloved Brother in the everlaſting Covenant of Light and Life, do I dearly ſalute and embrace thee, with thy dear Wife, my beloved Siſter, and thy dear Children, whom I dearly love in that which never changeth: My dear and faithful Friends, I am often refreſhed in you, when the Light brings you to my remembrance; then do I feel the ſprings of Love and Life, which ariſeth from the pure Fountain of Eternal refreſhments, to my joy and comfort, wherein I am made to praiſe and glorifie my God and your God, who hath redeemed us out of the Chains of darkneſs, and Kingdom of blackneſs, into the everlaſting brightneſs, glory, joy, and perfect bleſſedness for ever, to dwell in the enjoyment of his living preſence, as we abide faithful, to Eternity; in his preſence is fulneſs of joy, and at his right hand is pleaſure for evermore.
My prayers are night and day without ceaſing, to our Heavenly Father, that not one of his begetting may ever turn or ſlide back, but that every one may preſs forward towards the Mark of the price of the high calling in Chriſt Jeſus, who is our Life and glory, and ſo all may come to wear the Crown of Life and Immortality, triumphing in the everlaſting Bleſſedness of the Heavenly Riches and Eternal joy and happiness that’s perfect for ever, Amen.
Oh! my dear Brother and Siſter, we are all children of our Father, begotten in the everlaſting Seed of the Promise of Eternal life and ſalvation, Oh my precious Friends wait patiently with me alwys 64 I4v 874 64 always in the pure fear of the perfect and pure God, who hath an Eternal Treaſure, ful of everlaſting Riches and ready to diſtribute them to all his dutiful Children: Glory and Praiſes be given to his bleſſed Name for ever. Oh my beloved ones! your love to me is written in the Records that cannot be loſt. Dear hearts, glorifie our God in my behalf, that ever he counted me worthy to ſuffer for his Name; I hope to ſee your faces again (yet once more) with joy and gladneſs, with my dear yoke-fellow in the Lord’s Work, before we go hence, and be no more ſeen. So in the tender bowels of pure Love, do I take my leave of you at this time. The evelaſting peace and bleſſedneſs be upon you, and upon the whole Iſrael of God, Amen.
Dearly ſalute us to all Friends.
There was another Letter (and Paper) which was intercepted; but I have it not here with me, it being ſent home from Legorn. Yet here followeth more of their Writings to Friends and to my own particular, which at ſeveral times I received from them, unknown to the Oppreſſors.
A Copy of a Letter that I was moved to write the next day after I came to the Iſland and City, and communicated to their hands.
Dear Lambs, peace be unto you, Amen.
Now ſeeing that the everlaſting God and Father of all truth, 65 K1r 875 65 truth, hath in his tender love, and Fatherly mercy, and bowels of compaſſion (through the trials of manifold ſufferings and temptations) hitherto, even to this day, upheld and preſerved you in the innocency, and its teſtimony against the contrary; although ſometimes (I know that) you have taſted the ſentence of death in your ſelves, and even (as it were) ready to deſpair of life; yet in the living testimony of innocency, in the answer of a good Conſcience, I Daniel bear you record, (in the Covenant of Life) the ſame remaineth with you, and you are in it a good ſweet favour to the Lord, and his Eternal Truth and People. Oh! bleſſed for ever be his Name, yea and my very heart and life bleſſeth and magnifieth the Lord on your behalf.
Wherefore my dear Friends, be faithful, full of Faith, and the living, inviſible God of Peace is with you, and will not forſake you, ſeeing it is ſo, and much more you know which might be declared.
Oh! I am moved in the Bowels of my Father’s love, as one with you (in trials, and in the exerciſe of manifold temptations) to ſtir up your pure and innocent minds by way of remembrance, and also to beſeech you to take heed to the Teſtimony of Life that’s undefiled, and manifeſt in you, and to dwell in the ſame which retains the joy and comfort of the Lord, and his peace, which you know is not of the World; and ſo to watch and beware of the Enemy that is near to tempt to make ſhipwrack of Faith and a good Conſcience, and to deſpair, and ſo to betray not only your own innocent long-ſufferings, but also the Teſtimony of the Lord God of our Life, for which you have ſo long ſuffered, and by the pure Divine virture of the ſame have you been to this day preſerved; ſo that the Lord (who is, and will be your reward) hath not been wanting to you on his part. Oh faint not, but lift up your heads, and be faithful ſtill, as I am not otherwiſe perſwaded concerning you; and I am well perſwaded, that in his own Covenant and Way deliverance will come to the Seed; and ye know, if the ſame come not in his own Covenant of Truth, in the Light of his Countenance, it cannot be well; but your nay (you know) is to be nay, and ſo to ſtand in the Truth, againſt the contrary, whatſoever our God permits unreaſonable men to insiſt upon the outward or viſible body; and the same alſo will K work 66 K1v 876 66 work for his glory, and alſo for the good and eternal peace of his innocent ſuffering Lambs notwithſtanding.
And when this, with other Papers I had through not a little difficulty communicated to their hands, over the heads of our Enemies, I was moved to ſpeak my Meſſage as from the Lord of Life to them after I had offered up my body, and to lay down my life for theſe poor innocents, my dear friends; and ſo with my voice I ſaluted them in the Lord’s Truth, as they ſtood at the priſon-Grates with theſe words in the behalf of the general Aſſembly of the Saints in Light, to wit, The whole Body of God’s Elect, right dearly, ownes your Teſtimony, and you are a ſweet ſavour unto the Lord and his people: And foraſmuch as one of theſe poor afflicted Lambs replied, and ſaid on this wiſe, as if it was a trouble to them that they could not be more ſerviceable. Then my heart being melted, and my bowels of pity, mercy and compaſſion, being moved, I ſaid, That it was a wonderful mercy of the Lord, in as much as they were preſerved in their own meaſure of Truth and pure innocency, for which my heart praiſed the Lord for what mine eye ſaw, which right dearly affected my heart, and were well refreſhed at that ſeaſon, in the ſweet preſence of our living God, albeit our bodies were at a diſtance, but ſo as we could behold each others faces through the Priſon bars of Iron, in the Inquiſition.
Now for ſo much as in the Wiſdom of God it is ſeen meet that the fore mentioned and following Writings which came from their hands, might appear to publike view, that thereby every Member of the one Body may have a right underſtanding, and not onely ſo, but also a ſenſible feeling not onely of the trials and ſufferings in part of theſe innocent Lambs, but alſo of the conſolations of each other, as fellow-Members of the infinite Body of which 67 K2r 877 67 which Chriſt Jeſus the Lord is both King and Head, in whom be endleſs dominion and pure glory, and eternal ſalvation, Amen.
And ſo I being as it were conſtrained to publiſh the acceptable Words, that ſound and ſavor of pure innocency and clear truth, for the Elect’s sake, in the ſame Love and Life I am the more free hereunto, even as a Child, that differs but little from a ſervant, as I am in the Father’s Love, Power and Grace of Life, fitted to serve the undefiled Life of the leaſt in the Kingdom of Bleſſedneſs, and to adminiſter comfort or what elſe I have received from the Eternal Fountain or Fulneſs, for the uſe or ſervice of either Body, Mind, Soul, or Spirit, of my own Fleſh or Family, ſeeing no man ever hated his own Fleſh; and he is worſe than an Infidel that provideth not for his own Family, eſpecially them of his own Houſe.
This is a ſweet Salutation to God’s Elect Church in England and Ireland.
Right dear, precious and Heavenly ones, whoſe Beauty ſhineth bright, and at whoſe Name the hearts of the Heathen do tremble: We who through the everlaſting Mercies of our God, are Members of the ſame Body, and are held in ſtrait Captivity, and hard Bondage, for witneſſing forth the same Teſtimony and Covenant of pure Light, Life and Truth of our God, with you dear and faithful ones indeed, We here in the ſame Covenant of pure Love, and Bowels of tenderneſs, do dearly ſalute and embrace you all, glorifying and praising our Eternal Father for you all, who hath counted us worthy to partake of the fellowſhip and ſufferings for the Bodies ſake, with you in tribulations, fiery trials, manifold temptations, faſtings, watchings, heats and colds, and cruel threatning and perſecutions, perils by sea, and perils by Land, ſtanding in jeopardy of our lives year after year, and looking every hour, day and night, for many K2 Weeks 68 K2v 878 68 Weeks together, when we ſhould be brought out to Execution, but though Proclamation was made, and they came up to the very Gate with a Drum and Muſquets, to fetch us out to deſtroy us, yet the Lord God of everlaſting ſtrength, who in the deepeſt of all dangers, and greateſt extremity, when all hopes were paſt, did but blow upon them with the breath of his noſtrils, and they did flye as duſt before the Wind; for which we do entreat all Friends to glorifie our God on our behalf; for never did the Lord our God work greater deliverance for any, than he hath done for us from time to time, who are the leaſt and weakeſt for what we know, that ever the Lord our God ſent forth in ſo great & weighty a Work; but all things are poſſible with him, who made and created all things; it is he alone which carrieth on his own work by his own mighty Power, and the glory ſhal be his own for evermore, Amen.
Oh our dearly beloved Friends, did you know but the third part of the afflictions the Lord our God hath carried us through, you would ſay, The Lord hath wrought as great a Miracle in our preſervation, as ever he did in raiſing Lazarus out of the Grave: And in the greateſt of our afflictions we could not ſay in our hearts, Father, would thou hadſt not brought us here; but cryed mightily to our God for power to carry us through whatſoever ſhould be inflicted upon us, that the Truth of our God might not ſuffer through our weakneſs: And the Lord did hear us, and anſwered us in righteouſneſs, and carried us on with all boldneſs, and made our fore-heads as Flint, and our Brows as Braſs, in the faces of our Enemies; that whenſoever we were brought forth upon trial, all fear was taken away, that we ſtood as Iron-Gates and Caſtle-Walls in the faces of our Enemies, ſo that they ſaid, we would fain be burned; but we anſwered, No, we would not willingly be burned; but if our Heavenly Father doth call us to ſuffer in that kind for his Name ſake, he will give us power to go through it; and we have great cauſe to believe it; for our Lord God never called us to do any ſervice for him, but he gave us power, and made way for his own Work; glory and praiſe be to his holy Name for ever.
Dearly beloved friends, marvel not why Iſrael is not gathered in all this time; it is not for want of labour, nor travel, nor grief, nor 69 K3r 879 69 nor pain, faſting, nor mourning, nor weeping, nor love to their ſouls; but it is becauſe of the great oppreſſion: For here are a willing people, but they dare not until the Lord make way for them. Truly Friends, we have not been idle since we ſaw your faces, nor have we had much eaſe to the fleſh, but do travel night and day for Sion’s prosperity and perfect joy, and for the reparation of Jeruſalem, and her pure praiſe; though our ſorrows are deep, and our afflictions grevious, yet we do wait with patience to reap the peaceable fruits of righteouſneſs, and enjoy the benefit of our uprightneſs; Praiſes be to our God for ever, he hath kept us by his power and holineſs, that our Enemies have not one jot or tittle againſt us, but for the Truth of our God, and that we could not join with them; ſo they would not ſuffer us to have one line of refreſhment; but ſtript us out of all, so that we could not expect one drop of mercy, favour nor affection, but what our Heavenly Father did distil upon us from his living preſence, and work for us by the operation of his own Arm of ſtrength and power. But dear Friends, though a long Winter, and many ſharp and terrible ſtorms have paſt over our heads, ſo that we cannot expreſs our ſorrows; ſo likewiſe we cannot declare our joys. Oh! in the midſt of all our afflictions, our God did draw nigh unto us, and did ſpeak comfortably unto us with many ſweet and precious promiſes, and did never ſuffer his faithfulneſs to fail us, nor was he wanting unto us in Viſions and Revelations. Oh how doth he appear in his glory, beauty and brightneſs, ſo that our ſouls are raviſhed and wrapped up with his living preſence and glory many times, ſo that we do not dare to look out at our long ſufferings nor trials, but do preſs forwards towards the fulneſs of joy and bleſſedness which our Eternal Father hath prepared for all them that love him, and walk in obedience to him; and we know, the deeper our ſorrow is, the greater our joy ſhall be; and the heavier our Croſs, the weightier our Crown, as we abide faithful: And we do believe, that neither Principalities nor Powers, nor ſufferings, nor impriſonment, nor perſecution, nor life nor death, ſhall be able to ſeparate us from the love of God in Chriſt Jeſus our Lord and Saviour, Amen.
Dearly beloved Friends though our bodies are bolted up in the Rocks and Caves of the Earth, yet our ſpirits (you know) none can 70 K3v 880 70 can limit nor confine to any place. And we do behold your order and ſteadfaſtneſs of your faith and labour of love, and are daily refreſhed in all the faithful-hearted. Oh dear hearts! the remembrance of the leaſt of you is precious. Oh! the Rivers of tears that have diſtilled from our eyes, whilſt we do think upon you, for joy, becauſe of your growth and flouriſhing in the Truth. Oh! you are Virgins indeed, who have Oyl in your Veſſels, and your Lamps burning, and are cloathed with the long white Robes of Righteouſneſs, and are adorned with the Ornaments of pure Beauty and glorious brightneſs (abundance of you) to our joy and comfort: And we do pray night and day, That every Babe of our Heavenly Father’s begetting may proſper, even as we deſire our own ſouls ſhould proſper; and that every one may be kept out of incumbrances, and uſe the World as if they uſed it not; that every one’s mind, ſpirit, heart and ſoul, may be exerciſed in the Eternal, by the Power of God, out of the earthly, out of the viſible, out of the carnal and periſhing things of this life, (ſo as to truſt in it) into the heavenly, into the ſpiritual, into the inviſible, into that which never changeth, fadeth, nor waxeth old, where every one may dwell in the enjoyment of the preſence of the Lord; for in the preſence of the Lord is fulneſs of joy, and at his right hand is pleaſure for evermore. Oh! that every one may be emptied of your ſelves, and unbottomed of your ſelves, that you may build wholly upon the ſure foundation, and be anchored ſo faſt upon the Rock of Ages, that neither the ſwelling Seas, nor the foaming Waves, nor ſtormy Winds, though they beat vehemently, may ever be able to remove you. Oh dear Brethren! in the life and power you may feel the iſſues of Love and Life, which ſtream as a River to every ſoul of you, from the hearts of us that are wholly joined to the Fountain; Glory and everlaſting praiſes be given to his holy Name. Our whole ſouls, ſpirits, hearts and minds, are given up to ſerve the Lord in whatſoever he requireth of us, as he ſhall make it manifeſt unto us. And we do bleſſe his Name for ever, that he hath found us worthy of ſo high a calling, as to bind Kings in chains, and Nobles in fetters of Iron. Our prayers are continually for the advancement of the Goſpel of the Lord Jeſus throughout the whole Earth, for the gathering of the Seed of the Elect of God, and for the raiſing of it up over the 71 K4r 881 71 the Seed of the Serpent, in power and great glory, to bear rule, and to have dominion over the whole World, that the Kingdoms of this World may become the Kingdoms of our Lord Jeſus, that he may rule in his Princely Power; and reign in his Kingly Majeſty, whose Right it is; that the knowledge of the Lord may cover the Earth, as the Water covereth the Sea; that all the Children of the Lord may be taught of the Lord, and be eſtablished in Righteouſneſs; that ſo the Mourners in Sion may rejoice; and the heavy hearted in Jeruſalem may be right glad: The Lord God of Power hasten it for his own Name’s sake, and for his Elect’s sake, that lye in captivity under the hands of the dark Powers of the Earth, either ſpiritual or temporal; Amen, Amen ſaith our ſpirits.
Dear and precious Friends and Brethren, pray for us, that we may finiſh our Teſtimony to the glory of God, and to the praiſe of his holy Name, and to the comfort of all that love his appearing, and to our own eternal ſalvation, and to the ſhame and confusion of all that hate the Lord Jeſus, and perſecute his Truth. So in the pure Unity of the Covenant of Light, Life, Peace, Love, and everlaſting Righteouſneſs, do we take our leaves of you all at this time, hoping and believing we ſhall ſee your faces once again, before we go hence, and be no more ſeen. Dear Friends, pray for us.
Though we were in many ſtreights and hardſhips by reaſon of the oppreſſion; yet whilst our minds were ſtaid upon the Fountain, we ſaw no want; but our tender Father, whoſe heavenly eye was ever over us, ſaw our necessities, ſent his right dear and precious Servant, and just and faithful Steward, Daniel Baker, to adminiſter to our neceſſities both ſpiritual and temporal; he came not in his own time, will nor ſtrength, but in the Will and time, Strength and Power of the Almighty God, at whoſe preſence the Mountains were removed, the tall Cedars were made to bow, the ſtrong Oaks to ſtoop. Oh wonderful! He went to the Lord Inquiſitor, (the Popes Deputy) to demand our lawful Liberty, which would not be granted, unleſs he and we would write to Messæna, or Legorn, to ſome English Merchant to be engaged for four thouſand Dollers: Which Propoſition being out of the Covenant of Light we durſt not ſtoop to it; but our dear Brother in Chriſt Jeſus offered his body for our liberty, but it would 72 K4v 882 72 would not be granted; nothing would ſerve but one to engage for four thouſand Dollers to be paid, if ever we come into these parts again. Then in obedience to the Lord he offered up his Life for our Freedom, but all would not ſerve, the Will of our God be done.
Oh dear Friends! greater Love was never heard of, than for a man to lay down his Life for his Friend: Oh! it is worthy to be recorded in remembrance of him for ever; here he came up and down to adminiſter to us with his Life in his hand, time after time. So the Lord God of Power reward him double into his boſome for ever. Oh how did he refreſh our ſouls, ſpirits, minds and bodies through great tryals, which is never to be forgotten.
Katharine Evans, Sarah Chevers.
Who have ſuffered for the living teſtimony of Jeſus, and his pure innocency, in Bonds, tryals and tribulations, more than three years, to this day.
A ſhort Relation of ſome more of their exceeding great Tryals and Temptations.
Now in short time after we were taken Priſoners, we were ſtung with Flyes called Muſkatoes, in our faces and our heads, as we lay in our Beds, that were ſwollen as if we had the ſmall-Pox, ſo that all people were afraid of us, save the English Conſul; they thought we had been unclean persons, ſo that a Fryar told Sarah he ſaw an 73 L1r 883 73 an evil ſpirit in her face, which was a great trial; they could not ſleep in their beds in the houſe, they were ſo tormented, & we were told, that they had ſeen them that did pray and preach every day were burnt for Witches in a ſhort time; and they would keep us to ſee our lives and converſations; and ſo they have: And glory be to our God, they cannot lay guilt to our charge, but are made to confeſs the truth.
In a few days after we were there, in a Viſion, in the night, the Lord appeared unto me, and ſhewed me that round about us, and above and beneath us, there were many Magicians of Ægypt; and the Lord ſmote me, and ſaid unto me, The Devil hath deſired to winnow you as Wheat; but pray that your faith fail not. And the ſight was very dreadful and terrible; and the voice of the Lord did awaked me with much trembling and amazement, and a great War for the ſpace of twelve hours, before I could get the victory; and we did witneſs but little eaſe to the fleſh night nor day. We went in obedience to the Lord to one of their Tower-Houſes in time of their Worship, and ſtood trembling in the midſt of them; and I was made to turn my back to the high Altar, and kneel down, and lift up my voice in prayer unto the Lord, and he that was ſaying Service, drew off his Surplice, and kneeled a little beſide us till I had done; and he reacht forth his hand to us, to come to him, and offered me a token; and the Lord ſhewed me it was the Mark of the Beaſt: And I refuſed it; and he put it into Sarah’s hand, and ſhe gave it him again, and ſhewed him her Purſe, that ſhe had to give, if any had need. And he asked if we were Calvinists or Lutherans? And we said, Nay And he asked if we would go to Rome to the Pope? but we denied. And he asked if we were Catholicks? And we told him, We were true Chriſtians, the ſervants of the living God. And many of them were amazed, and came round about us; We having but little of their Tongue, gave our Teſtimony (for the Lord) in words and ſigns, as well as we could; and they were made ſubject to the Power at that preſent, praiſes be given to our God, and we departed in peace.
And ſince that, the Lord laid ſuch a heavy burthen upon us, that we did queſtion what he would do with us, before we knew the mind of God in it. And upon a ſet day they had a great L Meet- 74 L1v 884 74 Meeting to take their holy Sacrament, (as they call it) in a high place; but we knew nothing of it, nor where it was, but what the Lord revealed to us. And we were made to go in, and ſtand in the midſt; and there were many lights in divers places, and many Chriſts, as they call them, and much coſtlineſs and abominations of the Earth; they had ſo many ſorts of holy Garments (as they call them) of ſo many colours, that it would make one wonder how the Devil did invent it. And there we were made to ſtand in the midſt for the ſpace of three parts of an hour, as near as I can judge, in great power, trembling and quaking, and bitter mourning, ſo that they were all amazed, and ſome removed further for fear, but knew not what to do; for I never did witneſſe ſuch an Earthquake. In the end one came ſoberly, and ſpake us to go forth; and we went in the Lord’s time, and ſate at the door trembling and mourning, to the aſtoniſhment of them, and being ſo overcome with their abominations, we went along the ſtreet reeling to and fro, and ſtaggering like drunken men, ſo that we were a wound to all that ſaw us: It was the wonderful Power of God that made way for us to go forth to them, and kept us. They have uſed all the Craft they have day and night to Inchant us as the Lord hath made it known unto us, Glory and prayſes beo to his everlaſting Name for ever more. We know that there is no Inchantment againſt Jacob, nor divination againſt Iſrael.
Dearly beloved friends. Wee dearly ſalute you all in the inviſable life of our God, who is our life, our peace, our ſtay and ſtrength; under whose ſhaddow wee are Refreſhed, praiſes, glory and honour be given unto his powerfull name of all his for ever.
Truly friends, we are not able to declare the large mercies of our God vouchſafed unto us from time to time, his horn is our ſtrength, and his Name our ſtrong Tower in all our troubles, temptations, trials and ſufferings; he is a God at hand, and not afar off, and doth make us ſenſible before hand, by Viſions and Revelations, what is coming upon us; and doth arm us with his own Armour, and makes us as bold as Lyons; for we fear not the face of man, because we know we shall not ſuffer any thing but what ſhall make for the glory of our God; but truly we had fainted long ago, had not the Lord upheld us by his free Spirit; but we know the Lord taketh care of the leaſt of them that truſt him: 75 L2r 885 75 him: Praiſes be unto him for ever. Dear Friends, though we be abſent in body, yet we are preſent in spirit, and do feel you in that which cannot be ſeparated, as we abide faithful, and are much refreſhed in you; and the remembrance of you is precious unto us: Oh! that all our Friends could priſe the company and the ſight of each others faces. We do not want the company of Fryars, Jeſuits and Magiſtrates, nor great women. Here are ſome that have breathings after life, but they dare not ſhew it, for the ſame thing that was, is; they will not enter in themſelves, nor ſuffer them that would.
The Lord Inquiſitor ſent to us, that if we would (being we are good Women) we ſhould go into the Nunnery among the holy Women; and be maintained as long as we live, in regard we have denied the World, and all we have. And the Fryar told us, if we would come to their Maſſe-houſe and receive their holy Sacrament, we ſhould be the most eminent Catholicks in all Malta; but we denied them in the Name of the Lord, and all their dead foppery which they have invented. Here we are kept under the Inquiſition, as they say, till they have Orders from the Pope of Rome what they ſhould do with us.
We beſeech you all, faithful Friends, pray for us, for great are our trials: Did you but know the abominations that the Devil hath invented here, you would think it were tryal enough. But here we have cruel mockings; and the ſame contradictions, trials and temptations that ever the ſervants of the Lord had, & Chriſt himſelf: It is the wonderful Power of God that we are preſerved all this time; for all the whole Iſland are Papiſts, and given up to Idolatry. We are deſpiſed of all people, and abhorred of all Nations; and becauſe they cannot have any just thing againſt us, they do invent lyes againſt us; but the Lord is on our ſide, for elſe the Enemy would ſoon deſtroy us; for great is their rage; and we have continual War with them night and day we feel; behold their threatnings and cruelty is more than our tongues can expreſs: Great is the love of our God, for he doth refreſh us with the ſweet drops of his mercy, and doth water us every moment with the everlaſting ſprings of his Love, or elſe we had fainted long ago.L2 Oh! 76 L2v 886 76
Oh! let all who know the Lord, praiſe and glorifie his holy Name for ever and ever, Amen. Dear Friends Friends, farewel in the Lord.
Katharine Evan. Sarah Chevers.
Several other Writings to D.B. whileſt he was in Malta.
Oh thou tender-hearted one, whom our God and our Eternal Father hath ſent to relieve us his poor innocent Lambs, in hard bondage, and deep captivity, which thou art an eye-witneſs of; none can receive or diſcern it, but thoſe that do ſee it: But our Heavenly Father, who hath reſpect to the reſt of them that believe in his Name, hath ſent thee to be an eye-witneſs in ſome meaſure, of what we have undergone. Oh my dear, precious and endeared one! thou meek Lamb, thou innocent Dove, who dost bear the likeneſs, beauty and brightneſs of that unſpotted one that is come in the Volume of the Book to do the Will of God: We can give in our Teſtimony for thee, that thou cameſt here in the Power and Authority of the Moſt High, to which the tall Cedars were made to bow, and the ſtrong Oaks to bend, praises, praiſes be given to our everlaſting God for evermore. Oh my dearly beloved Brother, thy beauty ſhineth indeed, thou art all glorious within and without; thy Garments are perfumed with all delightſome ſcents; We ſmell the ſweet odours thereof, and do feel the fulneſs of Love and Life which runs from thy tender heart day and night to us, and in the ſame unity of Love do our hearts ſtream forth to thee, and thou knowest full well: Oh how hath 77 L3r 887 77 have our hearts and bowels have been melted for thee; our heads and eyes have run with tears, and our ſouls have been poured forth to our Heavenly Father for thy preſervation, and we do truly labor to see thy face before thou comeſt: Glory and praises be given to our Eternal Lord God, Amen ſaith our ſpirits; that he doth vouchſafe us ſo great a mercy as to behold the face of ſo precious a Friend: We do beſeech God to moderate us with his Eternal Spirit, that we may always be mindful of his mercies, and never to let his benefits ſlip out of our minds. We have been near death many times, when we had none to come near us, but thoſe that preacht death and deſtruction to us; I have lain twelve dayes, or more, in a faſt, in ſtrong travel night and day, that my dearly beloved Yoke-Mate would have been glad if the Lord would have taken me out of the body, becauſe of my weak affliction.
Then the Engliſh Fryar which was here, came up and down to us, and down to us, and would ſay to my Friend, She is ready to depart; ſend for me, and take notice what torment ſhe will be in; a thouſand Devils will be about her, to fetch her ſoul to Hell, becauſe ſhe will not be a Catholick. And after we were parted, we were called to faſt, so that my Friend was ſo weak, that she put on ſuch linnen upon her head, as ſhe thought to lie in her Grave: We did eat but little in a Month together, when our money was almoſt done, till we did know the mind of the Lord what to do. Then they did run to and fro like mad men, and the Fryars did come and ſay, The Inquiſitor ſent them to tell us, we might have any thing we would eat; and they did ſay, it was not poſſible that ever creatures could live with ſo little meat for ſo long a time together. They bring us meat, and ſay, the Engliſh Conſul did send it. It was a glorious Faſt indeed, the Lord did appear wonderfully in it, praiſes be given to him for ever, Amen.
We were very weak, because the power did work ſo ſtrongly; I had no manner of food in my body five or ſix days together; We did lie in clothes, because we had no ſtrength to put them off, nor one to make our bed: Then we did ſpeak to the Fryar, that we might come together; but he ſaid they had no ſuch order; if we would have a Phyſician, we might. And there we lay, none knowing from morning to morning whether we were dead or alive. We were kept quiet and ſtill till the Lord’s time 78 L3v 888 78 time was come; they brought many things for us to eat: Then the Lord ſaid, Thou mayest take as freely as if thou hadſt laboured for it with thy hands; I will ſanctifie it to thee through the Croſs. And he said unto Sarah, ſhe ſhould eat of the fruit of her hands, and be bleſſed. And we did eat, and were refreſhed, and glorified the Lord; We did cry mightily unto the Lord night and day, that we might not eat nor drink to offend him, we would rather dye. The Lord was well pleaſed with our Sacrifice, and did encreaſe our ſtrength, and adminiſtred comfort to us; honor and glory be to his bleſſed Name for ever. In the loweſt of all our conditions, we were kept a top of all the Mountains, ſo that they could not make us ſhrink or bow one jot or tittle to any of their Precepts or Commands. Yet the Fryars have commanded us in the Name of their God to kneel with them in prayer.
The time is too little for me to diſclose the twentieth part of the terrible trials; but whenſoever we were brought upon any tryal, the Lord did take away all fear from us, and multiplied our ſtrength, and gave us power and boldneſs to plead for the truth of the Lord Jeſus, and Wiſdom of the Words to ſtop the mouths of the gain-ſayers, that they would be made to ſay we ſpake truth; they could never ſay otherwiſe: But they would ſay, We had not the true faith but we had all virtues. Oh dear heart! if it be our Eternal Father’s good pleaſure to carry thee away without us, we do beſeech our Heavenly Father to bleſs, and to give thee a proſperous return, and to feed thee with the fulneſs of the bleſſing of the powerful Goſpel of the Lord Jeſus Chriſt Amen. And we do believe we ſhall not want thy prayers, nor the prayers of all the faithful, that we may keep faithful to the end, ſo that our God may be glorified his Church and People may be refreſhed and rejoiced and we may receive our Reward with the reſt of the Lord’s Lambs.
Our Life is with thee; for oh! thou art full of Love, thou tender-hearted one, who hath offered up thy ſanctified body, and purified life, in obedience to the Lord, for us poor afflicted lambs with thee, and companions in tribulations, trials and perſecutions, and in perils at Sea, and perils by Land. Oh thou precious Lamb of God, great is thy Reward in Heaven, great will be the Well-ſpring of joy that will arise in thee, in thy Journey: Oh thou 79 L4r 889 79 thou happy one indeed! whom the Lord our God hath made choice of amongſt his faithful Flock, and endued with ſo much power to come into ſuch a place as this, not the like in all Europe by their own report, and all others, and to stop the mouths of Lyons, and to trample upon the heads of Serpents, Scorpions and Vipers of the Earth, and they could not hurt thee; their ſtings are taken out of their heads, and out of their tails, glory, honor and everlaſting praiſes be given to our God for evermore, of all that know him; for he is worthy.
And the Lord bleſs thee and thine for ever Amen; and encreaſe thy ſtrength, and multiply thee abundantly in every good gift and Grace, and proſper all thy undertakings, that thou mayeſt be approved for ever before the King of Saints, in the General Aſſembly of the Moſt High, and ſtand before the Throne of his Majeſty with joy unſpeakable, and full of glory, Amen; Amen ſaith our ſpirits.
Dearly beloved pray for us, that we fall not, nor fail, whereby our Enemies may have any advantage to rejoice, and ſay, We ſerved a God that could not ſerve us, and called upon a God that could not deliver us; as if we were like them to call upon ſtocks, ſtones, pictures, and painted Walls, and dead things, that cannot ſee, hear nor ſpeak through their throats. We do beſeech thee to tel all our dear Friends, Fathers and Elders, the Pillars of the ſpiritual Building, with all the reſt of our Chriſtian Brethren, that we do deſire their Prayers, for we have need of them.
Oh! How ſtrong and powerful’s our King
To all that do believe in him?
He doth preſerve them from the Snare
And Teeth of thoſe that would them tear.
We that are ſufferers for the Seed,
Our Hearts are wounded, and do bleed,
To ſee th’ Oppreſſion and Cru’lty
Of men, that do thy Truth deny.
In Dungeons ſtrong, and Dungeons deep,
To God alone we cry and weep:
Our ſorrows none can read nor learn,
But thoſe that have paſt through the ſame.But 80 L4v 890 80
But he whoſe Beauty shineth bright,
Turneth darkneſſe into Light;
Maketh Cedars to bow, and Oaks to bend
To him that’s ſent to the ſame end.
He is a Fountain pure and clear,
His Chryſtal Streams runs far and near,
To cleanſe all those which came to him,
For to be healed of their ſin.
All them that do patiently abide,
And never ſwerve nor go aſide;
The Lord will them deliver out of all
Captivity, Bondage, and Thrall.
Let E.C. know, That his Exhortations I do dearly embrace, and do witneſs it to be an Eternal Truth. I have had large experience of it, the Lord hath carried me on in much difficult Service, ſo that many times the way hath been ſtopt up, that to the eye of Reaſon I could not have a way made both by Sea and Land: Oh! if thou didſt but know what experience I had of the mighty hand of the Lord in making a way, thou wouldſt wonder. Once my way was ſtopt, and my perſecution was ſo hot, that I ſate in a Field all night to wait upon the Lord to make way for me to do the Work he laid upon me: I could not get lodging for money in Town nor City; it was at Salisbury: where I was whipt in the Market. And the next morning I went through the City by the Watchmen, and they took no notice of me. Whereſoever the Lord did ſend me, into what Land or City, or place ſoever, if they did put me out never ſo oft, he would make me go till I got victory; ſave in the Isle of Man, there was a Souldier came to my bed ſide with a naked Sword, and took me by the Arm, and hal’d me out of the Bed at the tenth hour of the night, and carried me on Ship board: When I put on my clothes I did not dare to riſe. That place lies upon me yet; and I have motions to Edenburgh in Scotland, I was never there; the Lord did make me to do him ſervice to almoſt all the mighty men in England and Ireland; insomuch that I cryed oft to my God, saying, Lord! What wilt thou do with me that am ſo fooliſh, to go to ſuch wiſe men! If I were wiſe, I did not care if thou didſt carry me to the end of the 81 M1r 891 81 the Earth. The Lord ſaid, the fooliſh things must confound the wiſe; and he would carry me before the mightieſt men in all the Earth, to bear his Name before them, and I ſhould have victory whereſoever I went: And I do believe the Lord, and we both are made willing to wait the Lord’s time, which is a time of peace and joy, ſafety and happineſs. And we do bleſs, laud, praiſe and magnifie his holy Name, that he ſent ſo heavenly a Meſſenger to relieve, ſtrengthen, comfort and refreſh us in our great neceſſity, which is a mercy beyond expreſſion; all Friends that do underſtand it, will ſay ſo; Glory and everlaſting praiſes, honor, power and dominion be given to our Eternal Lord God for evermore, of us, and all that know him, Amen, Amen ſaith our ſirit.
Oh true and faithful Brother, into the Arms of everlaſting power and holineſs, ſtrength and mightineſs, purity and righteousness, do we commit thee, to be kept and preſerved, and proſperouſly carried on in thy Journey: The powerful bleſſing, peace, joy and happineſs of the Majeſty of the Most High God go along with thee, to preserve, and protect thee for ever, Amen, Amen.
Pray for us dear heart, that we may receive ſtrength to overcome, that we may ſing the ſong of Moſes and the Lamb, and the redeemed of the Lord, Amen.
Dear heart, it is hard for us to part with thee; thou wilt feel it.
The Will of our Eternal Father be done; in the pure unity of the bleſſed Spirit of Light, Life, Joy, Peace and everlaſting Glory, do we here take our leave of thee at this time, hoping to ſee thy face again with joy in our Lord’s time.
O dear heart! our hearts, ſouls, ſpirits, and our whole lives goeth along with thee.
The pure peace of our God rest upon thee, Amen.
Dearly ſalute us to all Friends, for they are dear and precious to us indeed.
Thou haſt cleared thy Conſcience towards us in the ſight of God and man; if here had been many friends, what could have been done more concerning us than thou haſt done? Thou haſt ſtood in great jeopardy ever ſince, and thy life hath been ſought for much; We have felt it, and cryed night and day to our Heavenly Father to preſerve thee, and ſafely deliver thee: Whatſoever we do ſuffer, we deſire the Will of our Heavenly Father to be done in all things, if the Lord doth ſtir up the Earth to help the Woman, it is his own free love; and upon that account we ſhall receive it, and not upon any other.
This they ſpake concerning the money I left with them, and for their neceſſities: And the Lord did appear unto me in a Viſion of the Night, and ſmote me on the Arm, and ſaid, Look, there is the Pope, he will not hurt thee; Where he ſtood in the Room, as one forſaken of God and man; this was at the English Consuls, when there was ſome fear upon me concerning him. Now here is a Roman in the Priſon which came hither upon ſome account, he is a a Doctor of Law, and differs from them in many things; but they are all of one ſpirit: He doth conſtantly affirm, that the Pope hath ſent an Order to ſet us free; and he ſaith, they are lyars and falſe blaſphemers if they do say the Pope ſent any ſuch Order as they ſpeak of. They do meet every day concerning us, we do feel them; ſome would have it one way, and ſome another, and ſo they cannot agree; because they do act contrary to the Will of God; the Lord ſets it all on fire, and hath burned all they have done theſe three years concerning us. Now where they will look a Reward of their charges, we do not know; the wiſe are taken in their own craftiness, and the ſubtile in their own ſnare. There have twelve of them ſate in Judgement upon us three years, and ſome have ſtruck hard at our lives, ſo that we have been even at death’s door. I have lain very weak three Weeks at a time. There are many for us, as far as they do dare. The Lord ſays, there were two with the Inquiſitor for us, and did plead much with him: I did ſee 83 M2r 893 83 ſee it in a Night-Viſion. The Engliſh Conſul which is dead, was with us two ſeveral times after we were in the Inquiſition; he ſaid he would lend us five pounds when we did want; but when our money was near done, we were made to rejoice greatly, and could not take any of any one. We did not know the mind of the Lord in it; but had we had money, we had not known the mighty Power of God. Now we are able to truſt the Lord where-ever he ſhall carry us without money. We do queſtion the money in the Conſul’s hand. It will be hard for him to part with it. Our Life is with thee.
A few Lines to D.B.
Oh our dear and faithful Friend and Brother, begotten of our heavenly Father, right dear and precious in his ſight, and beautiful before his preſence. Dear heart, we do glorifie our God in our hearts, ſouls and ſpirits, who hath called, choſen, and elected thee to come up to the help of him againſt the Mighty, and hath carryed thee along in ſo weighty a Work, and hath proſpered thee therein, praiſes be given to his bleſſed Name for ever, who hath encloſed thee in his Boſom, and Chamber of his everlaſting Love, and hath hid thee in his private Pavillion, where them that would hurt thee, cannot find thee, becauſe of the ſhadowing of his Almightineſs, under whoſe defence thou art kept ſafe; and he doth carry thee upon the Wings of his Power, ſo that the Mountains do become plain before thee, which we do ſee clearly in the Light; Eternal honor and glory be to his name for ever, who is called, Wonderful Counſellor, the Mighty God, the everlaſting Father, the Prince of Peace, in whom we have fellowſhip, and unity one with another, and none can hinder.
Dear heart, we do dearly embrace thy ſweet Exhortations, thou being ſensible of the inſtigations of Satan, who hath winnowed us with every bait, winding and twining ſlights that he hath, Praises be to our God for ever, who hath preſerved us, and prevented him.M2
Behold the Word of Life aroſe in me, saying, (this morning) Keep to Yea and Nay, and I will confirm my Covenant unto thee. Theſe Words were spoken to the true Seed that ſhall inherit the Kingdom; the ſame (you know) is but one in Male and Female. And ſo the bleſſing of my Life reſt upon you, and be with you in the ſame, even in that which hath no end, neither fadeth away; yea and my Spirit ſaith, Amen.
Dear Lambs, read within, and be refreſhed, and the God of Life and Peace encreaſe the ſame, and multiply your ſtrength abundantly, Amen.
Another Paper from them to my Hand.
Dear and precious heart, in the Eternal Covenant of Light and Life of our God do we ſalute thee, and dearly embrace thee. Oh! what hath the Lord made thee unto us! far more precious than we are able to expreſs; and great will be thy reward for thy faithfulneſs to the Lord, and thy dear and tender love to us, and thy diligent care of us.
Oh! thou art the Meſſenger we have cried long for, to our Heavenly Father, saying, How long, Oh Lord! How long will it be before thou wilt send thy Meſſenger, whoſe feet are beautiful, coming upon the Mountains, bringing glad tydings of great joy to us thy poor Captives. Now hath the Lord our God anſwered us at large: Praiſes, praiſes be to his Name for evermore. Oh! 85 M3r 895 85
Oh! how are our ſouls refreshed, and our ſpirits ſupported, and our hearts comforted, our minds rejoiced, and our bodies ſtrengthened! Thou canſt never do greater ſervice to the Lord our God, than to come into ſuch a place as this, to offer up thy dear life in ranſoming us: Great was the Power that brought thee, and great is the Power that doth uphold thee, and Mighty is the Strength which doth preſerve thee, and great will be thy Reward. Thy labour of Love we do bear Teſtimony cannot be forgotten, nor thy faith unfeigned put out of remembrance; it is written in the Book of Life for ever, and it will be regiſtred and read in the House of Iſrael Eternally; The mouth of the Lord hath ſpoken it, and he will perform it. Farewell in the Lord. By us
Oh our dearly beloved and precious Friend and Brother, right honorable indeed for ever: We dare not look out at thy departure, because we ſtand in the will of our Maker. The bleſſing of the Almighty be upon thee for ever, and make thee flouriſh in all thy endeavours; Thou art called by the name of Daniel Baker, in the midst of thine Enemies thou art in the hand of thy Maker: And this the Lord hath ſpoken, Where ever thou doſt come, thy Glaſs shall not be broken, until thy Sand be run. Oh! this day is this Propheſie fulfilled in our ſight: When they have done dealing treacherouſly, they ſhall be dealt treacherouſly withall; the Lord doth ſteal in upon them, Praiſes be to his Name.
Dear heart, ſalute us dearly to thy dear and precious Wife, with all dear Friends, in the Covenant of Grace and Peace. Dear heart, farewell, farewell.
Another Letter from Sarah Chevers, to friends in Ireland, to be read among the aſſemblies of Saints in Light.
Oh! all ye righteous ones, whoſe dwellings are on high, in the fulneſs of beauty, holineſs and glory, whoſe Name and Fame reacheth to the ends of the Earth, to the aſtoniſhment of the Heathen, and the amazement of the ungodly, to the preparation of all Nations to appear before the dreadful preſence of our Lord God Almighty, to be ſtript of all falſe coverings, and to be left without excuſe; Glory and praiſes be to our God for ever Amen; who hath made us eye witneſſes of his mighty Work, and helpers together with you, according to our meaſures, to the chaining down of the Powers of darkneſs, and to the defacing of that painted Harlot, Myſterie Babylon, with all her Lovers, to the utter overthrow of Antichrist, with all his wicked Kingdom, Amen.
The day is dawning, the Sun of Righteouſneſs is ariſing over all Nations, for to make a clear ſeparation, to gather in his own Flock, and to ſcatter the proud in the imaginations of their own hearts, to feed the hungry, to heal the ſick, and to bind up the broken hearted, to cloath the naked, to viſit the ſpirits in priſon, and comfort the Mourners in Sion, to cauſe the heavy- hearted in Jeruſalem to rejoice.
Oh my dear Friends! who are precious in the ſight of our Heavenly Father, partakers of his Divine Nature, living Stones, and holy Aſſemblies, wherein dwelleth the fulneſs of God Almighty’s Power and Strength, Riches, Glory, Wiſdom, Counſel, Knowledge and Underſtanding; he is the Rock of Ages, the ſure Foundation, the Ark of the Covenant of the Promiſe of everlaſting bleſſedness, Amen.
My dear and precious ones, whom my ſoul loveth, my heart delighteth in you, and my ſpirit rejoiceth greatly becauſe of the excellency of God’s Almightineſs amongſt you, so that you are a dread to the Nations; Kings, Princes, and mighty men of the Earth ſhall bow before the Power of Almighty God, by whom we 87 M4r 897 87 we ſtand, and all ſhall be brought under the Foot-ſtool of Chriſt and his Government, and he alone ſhall reign in righteouſneſs, and rule the Nations in Judgement; then ſhall the cry of the poor be heard, and the ſighing of the needy be eaſed, and the yoke of Wickedneſs be broken, and the oppreſſed ſhall be ſet free, the Image of Chriſt reſtored, and the Image of that ſubtile Serpent defaced, deſtroyed, and utterly caſt down for ever, Amen; ſo ſaith my ſpirit: Glory, honor, laud and praiſe, be given to our Lord God Almighty, for ever, Amen.
A ſweet Salutation is this, from the breathing forth of my pure Life, to the ſame Life; in my Spirit, joining in my meaſure, a ſufferer for the Seeds ſake, glory to the Lord, who hath counted me worthy; Farewel, farewel my dear hearts. My dear Yoke-mate K.E. dearly ſalutes all Friends.
O ye holy Aſſemblies! whoſe hearts are wholly joined to the Lord. I with you, in the Life & Power of the Almighty God do travel for the raiſing of the Seed, & the gathering in of the loſt ſheep of the Houſe of Iſrael. Oh! bleſſed be the day wherein the Lord called me, and counted me worthy to ſuffer for the Seed’s ſake: Praiſe, praiſe the Lord for me ye bleſſed of the Lord, in whom the living praiſes are found in the living Fountain of God Almighty, the fulneſs that filleth every empty ſoul, in the Streams of Love, Life, Light, Strength, Riches, Immortality, and Eternal Glory; So Truth, Joy, Peace and everlaſting Bleſſedneſs remain with you all for ever, Amen.
My Life is given up for the ſervice of the Lord; Bonds, Chains, Bolts, Irons, double doors, Death it ſelf is too little for the Teſtimony of Jeſus, and for the Word of God; ſo the Seed be gathered, it is but a reaſonable Sacrifice: Bonds and Afflictions betide the Goſpel of Chriſt; He that will live godly in Chriſt Jeſus, muſt ſuffer Persecution; it is an evident token.
My dear Friends, my Light, my Life, my Love hath perfect Union in the Eternal Spirit of the living God, and remains with you all for ever. Fathers, Elders, Pillars, Nurſing-Mothers in Iſrael, true Israelites indeed, in whom is no guile. My dear Salutation, and breathing forth of my Eternal Father’s Love is to all the breathing Seed, begotten of the Heavenly Father, Peace, Mercy and Truth be multiplied among you all for ever, Amen.Pray 88 M4v 898 88
Pray for us that we may have boldneſs over our Enemies; to fulfil the righteous Will of our Heavenly Father, and be kept faithful in his Will, for ever, Amen. Streams of Love and Life floweth from a living Fountain, to you all my dear Friends; Our love remaineth ever with you all, Amen.
Preſent this to the hand of L.C.
L.C. Thou Nursing-Mother in Israel, peace be to thee, for ever Amen. Thy dear Brother Daniel Baker, in the Covenant of Life in obedience to the Lord, hath viſited us, to the amazement of our Enemies, Glory be to the Lord for ever, Amen; he hath been a faithful Steward indeed, worthy to be had in remembrance in the Book of Iſrael for ever, Amen. Whatſoever for the Truth we ſuffer, our reward is with us, and our innocent life will clear us, Amen.
Now after I had received theſe Papers, though not through a little ſtreights and difficulty, with jeopardy of my precious Life, which my God ſweetly through all preſerved, Glory to his Name; my heart was (as it were) overcome with the loving-kindneſs and ſalvation of the living Lord, and in his ſavory Life my mouth was filled with thankſgiving and praiſes to my God; and I ſaid in my heart on this wiſe, Who am I, oh Lord! or what was my Father’s House, or what is the Land of my Nativity, that I (a poor afflicted and deſpised Worm!) ſhould be raiſed up to ſee and perceive what mine eye, mine eye in thy Eternal Power and pure Life behold! Oh my God! thou haſt known the innocent travel of my ſoul, which right well know the ſame is not hid from thee, even from the day of my birth, unto this moment, through no ſmall trials and tribulations, and through the exer899ciſe 89 N1r 899 89 ciſe of manifold temptations; yet behold, my Life is preſerved a at this time: And oh! my heart, my mind, my ſoul my ſpirit, in thy pure, undefiled Life and Virtue, bleſſeth thy Name, thy pure Name, which thy Virgins love and live in, and in the ſame they glorifie thy beloved, and the Wings of thy Majesty overſhadoweth them, and their delight is under the ſecret ſhadow of thy Almightineſs, bleſſed be thy Glory, bleſſed be thy undefiled Power, bleſſed and magnified be thy pure Wiſdom, and let the ſame be so even in the Tabernacles of the juſt for ever. Thou Lamb of Immortality, the Thrones, the Kingdoms, and Eternal Dominions are thine, and over all thy Throne is, and ſhall be exalted, and thy Lambs behold thy glory and thy Majeſty, in this the day of thy terrible and glorious appearance; Wiſdom, Riches, Glory, Power, Might and Dominion everlaſting (with Eternal Salvation) over all, to thy name, Amen, saith my Spirit, in the Life which is, was, and for ever shall be, the ſame which liveth and abideth for ever, and fadeth not away: In the same I commend thy dear, tender Lambs, to be preſerved according to thy unſearchable Wiſdom, and counſel of thine own heart, to thy everlaſting Renown and Glory, and their Eternal comfort and joy, and felicity with thy Saints and Angels in the Light of thy countenance, and in everlasting remembrance in the powerful and Eternal Kingdom of Immortality, if I be no more in this World, when this body is gone to its place, according to thy Eternal Purpoſe and Decree, in thy Eternal Counſel; ſo be it, ſaith my ſpirit, yea and Amen ſaith my ſoul, which bleſſeth and magnifieth thy Eternal Name, inaſmuch as thou haſt ſo far fulfilled thy (living) Word of Propheſie, and not onely ſo, but much more alſo the deſire of my heart, in the behalf of thy dear, tender, ſuffering, and long-ſuffering Seed of thine own bowels, for which be innumerable Praiſes, Wiſdom, Salvation, Glory and Dominion to thy holy Name, Amen, Amen.N
My right dearly and well-beloved Friends of Eternal Life, of the Church of the firſt-born of the living God, which is the Pillar and ground of Truth, of which Chriſt Jeſus our Lord is the alone and onely Head: Peace be unto you in him, who is ariſen in his pure immortal life, and hath brought Life and Immortality to light, through the Word of his Power, and his Eternal Goſpel of Peace, which is not hid from us, but it’s clearly manifeſt in us by his coming, who ariſeth with healing in his wings: Glory, Dominion, living, endleſs praiſes Immortal to his Name, now and for evermore; and let all the upright in heart, with my precious life ſay, Even ſo Amen.
Dear ſuffering, and long-ſuffering Lambs, ye know, that as I came in the Eternal Love and Peace of Immanuel, God’s Lamb, to viſit and ſerve you, and miniſter to your neceſſities, the which in the ſame Life and Peace, and in the integrity and uprightneſs of heart, and in its pure innocency, my God knoweth; and behold I call your Life that’s manifeſt in you, (in which is our perfect unity as Members of one Body), to bear me record, That I have endeavoured in the good will of my God, to perform the ſame; and verily, the hand and bleſſing of Almighty God is with me, and hath bleſſed me, and ſo my reward is with me, and my work hath been manifeſt before me, even in the Light of his Countenance that liveth for ever; and this Scripture is fulfilled in me alſo, The Father worketh hitherto, and I work. So my dear Friends, I have honeſtly and nakedly before the Lord cleared my Conſcience ſo far concerning you, and on your behalf, which is my reaſonable ſervice; and ſo I leave the ſame to the living Teſtimony of the Lord Jeſus which you hold, and for which I am ſatisfied, (and in the behalf of the whole body of God’s Elect you have ſo long ſuffered) So the Eternal God of Power, Dominion and Glory, of Heaven and Earth, conſolate, ſupport and ſtrengthen you, (to the end) that your Teſtimony may be finiſhed with joy, to his everlaſting praiſe to whom onely it belongs; and ſo my Spirit in the Light and Life immortal, ſaith, Even ſo Amen. Farewel dear lambs, I am your true Brother,
Joseph was not made known to his Brethren the firſt time, though his Bowels earned towards and over them, till at laſt he could no longer for901bear 91 N2r 901 91 bear crying out with tears, ſaying, I am Joſeph your Brother; and little Benjamin the youngeſt, he dearly loved you know.
1661This 5th. day of the Week, and the 30th. of the 11th. Mo. 1661.
When my face you do not see,
Wait in the Eternal Life, and then remember me.
So farewell, and feel the Well-ſpring of Life.
This and many other Papers was communicated to each others hands, (which are ſeen meet not to be added hereunto) with the jeopardy of my life, and what elſe did attend us; but magnified and for ever bleſſed be the living Lord and his Goodneſs, Wiſdom and Salvation, who proſpered his Work and Workers in his own Life of laſting Righteouſneſs, through and over ſelf, over all that which must dye and go to its place, Amen.
Here followeth ſomewhat relating to the Travel and Service of D.B. which he hath freedom to give forth for the Truth’s ſake, and Friends ſ atisfaction.
The intent of the Spirit of the Lord within my heart and mind, ſtirring me up to write ſomewhat concerning my travel from my Native Countrey, Kindred and Father’s Houſe, being freely given up to ſerve the Lord, his Truth and People, in the Power and Goſpel of God; I having no impoſition or neceſſity all laid upon my Conſcience, as from any mortal man, but N2 cer- 92 N2v 902 92 certainly it was a pure neceſſity from the living God of Heaven & Earth, many of his faithful servants, Meſſengers, ſons & daughters that were, & are as dear & precious to me as my own life, may beat me record on the Lords behalf unto the truth of what I write on this wiſe; & ſurely in the counſel everlaſting, the thing was hid from me then whether ever I ſhould return to my Native Countrey or not. However in the love and favour of God, and in his fear ſet up within my heart, was I given up, with my body alſo offered as a living Sacrifice, which was but my reaſonable ſacrifice, to give a ſound to the Nations afar off, of the mighty day of our God, and his bleſſed Truth, the Light of Jeſus manifeſt in every Conſcience, in which Light we have moſt aſſuredly believed unto ſalvation: And verily the Power and pure Preſence of his Eternal Strength was with me, through many hardſhips, trials and tribulations; the right hand of the hiding of his Power did ſweetly guide, ſtrengthen & ſupport me, even as it did, and doth his Lambs whom he ſo sends forth as among Wolves, in his Dovelike innocency, harmleſsneſs & wiſdom, which is as wiſe, or rather wiſer than the Serpents. And this Scripture have I well witneſſed fulfilled whilſt travelling from one Nation to another people, as my Father did in the ancient days. And on this wiſe, with three more Brethren, ſo freely given up with one conſent in the behalf of the Goſpel everlaſting, that is now preaching agian to the Nations, Tongues and Kindreds.
We ſet forward the --03-1616th. of the third Month, and we ſweetly parted with our right dearly beloved Friends, Brethren, Fathers and near Relations, that were fleſh of our fleſh, and bone of our bone, and from all our outward acquaintance, and Native Countrey; in the Will, Love and Spirit of our God, in the ſame day from Gravesend we ſet forth; and at the end of 44. days, we arrived at Legorn in Italy, where we gave a certain ſound of our innocent ſervice and Meſſage of Salvation; and of its life and bleſſedneſs, coming upon the Nations as a weight either to condemnation or juſtification, as the ſame is received or rejected among them.
And thus as we had opportunity, among the men of our own Nation, the Jews and others, we gave a sound and the bleſſing of the God of Heaven, and his Preſence was with us, whether the Nation- 93 N3r 903 93 Nations of men did hear or forbear; but the Witneſs of God in ſundry was reached; and the ſame anſwered in us. And herein we are ſo far well ſatisfied, whilſt others were hardened, who defied us and our Teſtimony, as their uncircumciſed Fathers always did resiſt and gain-ſay the truth that saves from sin, and ſo finally from its condemnation.
And it came to paſs after that we had waited upon the Lord to underſtand his good will and pleaſure, he answered us in the joy of our hearts, and we received his counſel, and communicated of the ſame to each other’s ſatisfaction in the love of God, in which we were wel confirmed to obey the ſame until the death, as the Lord our God might have permitted for his Name’s ſake, who then further ordained us to be ſeparated, viz. John Stub’s and Henry Fell to paſs on towards Alexandria, and my dear brother and companion, Richard Scoſtrop, with me, to paſs Eastward, to Smyrna and Conſtantinople, in Aſia; and after a little ſeaſon we parted in the goodneſs of God. And when 24 dayes were finiſhed, having (in the mean time) touched a little ſeaſon at the Iſland Zant, we arrived at Smyrna. But behold it came to paſs, immediately at our coming there was not a little ſtir together with the evil ſurmizings, and what else ariſing up as a flood, with threatnings breathed forth from the Apoſtate Chriſtians, eſpecially men of no ſmall degree (of our own Nation) againſt us, when Turks, Jew, Greeks, Heathens, and others, were not altogether ſo evil affected as to let us from the exerciſe of our Conſcience void of offence towards God and man, and ſo to hold forth the example of the harmleſs Life, and unblameable Converſation, in all equitableness in Doctrine, Life and Practice, of what we profeſſed in the midſt of them. But oh! how the Chriſtians (by Name) in Aſia (who ſhould firſt have received the Word of ſaving-health) how did they defie and reproach not onely us, but our living Teſtimony and Message of Bleſſedneſs, which day by day was founded in their ears notwithſtanding; the Lord God lay not what they did againſt us, to their charge, when they have moſt need of Mercy and Peace with God, if happily repentance unto life be witneſſed by them, who know not what they did; yea and my ſpirit is ready to ſay Amen, for their ſakes that hated us without a cauſe, as the ſame unbelieving nature did our Lord and Maſter, whom 94 N3v 904 94 whom we love, ſerve and honor in the ſame, and therefore keep his ſayings, which are not grievous to us in that one and the ſelfſame Spirit which reproves the World for ſin, in which we worſhip him as the Father, the which guideth into all truth, from all evil, concerning which we wel admoniſhed their minds to ſubject to the one, and to avoid and turn from the other, each having their proper effects attending them; as anguiſh, woes, judgements and diſquietments upon the ſoul and conſcience that doth evil; and contrariwiſe, bleſſings, peace, glory, honor, and the goodneſs of God attending the ſoul of man which worketh good, in the Light of the ſame excellent Spirit of God which exerciſeth the Conſcience in temperance and ſobriety, meekneſs, and gentleneſs of Chriſt.
And on this wiſe we beſought the men of our own Nation, together with many more in them parts, that they may become a ſweet favour of the pure life of Chriſt and Chriſtianity, indeed and in truth, which tends to anſwer the Witneſs of the Eternal God manifeſt in Turks, Greeks, Jews, Heathens, and Apostate Chriſtians among the dark Nations, where they have their converſation: yet I am conſtrained to expreſs ſomewhat of their manner of dealing with us to our good; Wherefore men of reaſonable and honorable underſtanding, may bear with me, to the end that the honeſt-hearted may be informed to beware of a perſecuting Spirit, which is not of God, neither ever was it born of him.
Their threatnings encreaſed daily, and they burthened themſelves exceedingly with us, whose deportment and behaviour they were made to confeſs to, as did the Conſul and divers others, which in truth they could not ſay otherwiſe, but that it was temperate, innocent, harmleſs and unblameable in our converſation; Magnified be the Lord, and bleſſed be his Grace of Life, by which we in ſubmission to the ſame were guided herein: But becauſe our Teſtimony was not for, but againſt whatſoever might be ſaid in truth to be evil, unjust, or unequitable, (which is diſhonourable) therefore were we hated of the high and lofty, to the diſquieting of their own reſt day and night, becauſe they burthened themſelves ſo with the truth and innocency of the Lord’s Teſtimony, which our Life held forth among them who received not the ſame in his love that they might be ſaved not onely from ſin, but alſo from the 95 N4r 905 95 the wrath to come. So they forthwith ſent a Meſſage from Smyrna, to the great City Constantinople, to the King’s Embassador of England, and beſought him to expel us out from among them of Aſia, that we might not have a being in the extent of their Authority, in viſiting them on this wiſe, as by the annexed Warrant thou that reads the ſame, may underſtand.
A Copy of the Warrant which they produc’t and proſecuted. Whereas we are informed, that there is lately arrived with the Zant Frigot, one Daniel Baker, with his Companion, commonly called Quakers, with intention to come up to this Port; and becauſe we ſufficently have had experience, that the carriage of that ſort of people is ridiculous, and is capable to bring diſhonor to our Nation, beſides other ill-conveniences that may redound to them in particular, and to the Engliſh in general: We therefore will and require you to give a ſtop to the ſaid Quakers, from proceeding any further in their journey either to Conſtantinople, or the preſent Court of the Grand Signior, viz. the Great Emperor of the Turks or to any other place where our Authority extends, ſhipping them away either directly for England, or any other part which they ſhall chuse to imbarque. And we do hereby require all Officers and Members of the Factory, and Maſters and Officers of Ships, to be aiding and aſſisting to you herein: And for ſo doing, this ſhall be your Warrant. For our loving Friend, Anthony Isaacson, Esquire, Conſul for the English Nation at Smyrna; By his Excellency’s command. Paul Ricoat, Secretary. Given under our Hand and Seal, at our Court at Pare of Constantinople, 1661-07-19the 19th day of July, it should be 1661-08-19Auguſt, for we were not in Asia in the Month called July 1661 Winchelſ.4.And 96 N4v 906 96
And forthwith this Warrant was diſpatcht with a Meſſenger from the Embaſſador’s Court at Conſtantinople, to Smyrna; and behold, the Merchants of the Earth, and others that could not endure to hear of the ſound of Truth, received the ſame not with little gladneſs, (poor me! wo and alas for them!) the end of which will not be peace, but contrariwiſe, wo and miſery; and they put the ſame Warrant in execution, and ſent a Turkiſh Janiſary, and a Drugerman, that were Officers under the Conſul of the Engliſh Nation; and they came with Harmols, (viz. called Porters) with Cain’s Weapons, and fetcht us from our Lodging before the Conſul; and the man was courteous and moderate, and had his ear open then to what we in the reverence and fear of the Lord then ſaid unto him, which was his honor, who then ſaw over and beyond that fooliſh Ceremony of the Hat, neither did he burthen himſelf with the ſame, as many unwiſely do, to the clouding or veiling of the nobility of a good underſtanding, which hath a more noble reſpect to Equity, Juſtice and Judgement, without respect of perſons in them, where it is ſet up in its proper and peculiar Authority, than to ſuch fooliſh ceremonies which are below men of Wiſdom; yet he deſired that we might not take it ill as from him (in his place of Authority) in doing as he was obliged in the proſecution of the Warrant, which ſummoned all officers and Members of the Factory, with Maſters and Officers of Ships, to be aiding and aſſiſting to ſurprize and baniſh two innocent, naked, harmleſs men, that had neither Bow nor Sword, nor any ſuch like material, or viſible Weapon of War to reſiſt evil, as Paul and Barnabas had not, againſt whom the hard-hearted Jews cryed out with the ſame voice, Help men of Iſrael, &c; and ſuch like ſtir there was; and we let the Conſul firſt know at our firſt coming, that we owned his place of Authority, and were ready to ſubmit to any thing that was juſt or equitable; and at laſt in this thing we could not ſubmit without ſuffering, foraſmuch as in the uprightneſs of our heart, and in the innocency of the ſame were we come ſo far to do the Will of God, and to ſuffer for it, as his hand permitted.
So with many other expreſſions I cleared my Conſcience, as alſo by Words, Sufferings, and Writings, to the whole Nation there; and the Conſul ſeemed to be unwilling to uſe violence againſt us that 97 O1r 907 917 that at our departure prayd for them that hated us without a cauſ, knowing not what they did, we ſeeing it could not at that ſeaſon be otherwiſe, but what the Lord had permitted them to bring to paſs, not to their juſtification, but as a Judgement among them from the living God, who did not onely diſpence the viſitation of his Love and Salvation day by day among them, but he viſited them alſo with the ſtrokes of his diſpleaſure, even unto death and deſtruction: And ſurely he ſmote and took away of the chiefeſt, and others of them daily. And verily my heart often cryed, and beſought the Lord for them (in ſecret more eſpecially; though I was conſtrained not to ceaſe uttering my voice openly among them, and for them) while they ſought my hurt; as many of them (I know) by the Witneſs of God in them may remember. And ſo we were ſent away as Priſoners, or rather as Lambs driven from the Dens of Lyons, or from the barren Caves of ravening Wolves, whose Nature wooried them.
Now we had ſpoken for a paſſage by a Dutch ſhip, to have gone from thence to Constantinople; but before the ſhip departed Smyrna, the Warrant came to the Conſul’s hands, which thou mayeſt see came not from either them called Turks, Jews, Heathen, Greeks, or Barbarians, but even from the men of our own Nation. Alas! alas! yea wo and alas for them.
So the Reader may ſee what a ſtir there hath been in the Region of Aſia against the appearance of Truth, and its innocency, in plainneſs, to expel and baniſh it, together with its Meſſage and Meſſengers, out of their coaſts or borders; and not to have any entertainment, or at leaſt to come within the extent of their Authority, whatever becomes of them, let them go where they will, &c. So as in effect they ſay, We will not have this man, the Light, Truth, Temperance Innocency, its Life and Wiſdom from above, to rule, or have its preheminence over us in our Conſciences; We will rather chuſe to live in the practice of our own evil hearts and ways; and therefore thus to their own hurt they ſay unto God, Depart from us, for we desire not the Job. 21. knowledge of thy ways; and as for the Word of the Lord, we have no delight in it. Lo they have rejected the Word of the Lord, and what Wiſdom is in them? And ſuch the holy perfect and upright man ſaw rebel againſt the Job 24. 13 O Light, 98 O1v 908 98 Light and ſaid, They are of those that rebel against the Light, they know not the wayes thereof, neither abide in the paths thereof.
And ſo with conſent they joined together to baniſh Truth, its Meſſage, and Meſſengers of Peace, which provoked them to jealousie that believe not, who ſcorned us as fools, and what elſe, not honeſtly conſidering, how that God is provoking the Nations to jealouſie and wrath with a fooliſh people, as in the ancient days, Deut. 22. was propheſied. And ſuch beſought our Lord and Maſter, even Jeſus, to depart out of their Coaſts or Borders, who loved and fed their Swine upon the Mountains, even the Gadarenes beſought him to depart, who ſaith, He that loveth Father or Mother, or what else, more than me, is not worthy of me; and Father and Mother, and ſuch Relations, are of more honourable eſteem than many Swine. And to his Diſciples he also ſaith (that was dead, and is alive, and liveth for ever) As they have done unto me, ſo will they do unto you; if they have perſecuted me, they will alſo perſecute you. These are his faithful and true ſayings; He that receiveth you, receiveth me; and he that receiveth me, John 13. 20 receiveth him that ſent me; mark that: Verily, verily I say unto you, Whomſoever receiveth whom I ſhall ſend, receiveth me, and him that receiveth me, receiveth him that ſent me, &c; He that deſpiſeth you, despiſeth me; and he that deſpiſeth me, deſpiſeth him that ſent me. And it’s to be underſtood, that ſuch like dealing J.S. and H.F. our Brethren, found at Alexandria, from whom they alſo were banished.
And on this wiſe being rejected, deſpiſed, baniſhed out of Aſia, from Smyrna, in about eight dayes we arrived at the Iſland Zant, where my dear Brother and Companion in ſufferings, and not onely so, but in the Kingdom and patience of Chriſt, he was viſited with sickness nigh unto death; but the Word and Commandment of the Lord ordered me to paſs through part of Italy, and my face was ſet towards Venice; and we weighed the thing in the fear and counſel of the Lord, and were both given up in one to travel; yet it was ſo that the poor Lamb was not capable in body to travel with me, by reaſon of weakneſs; and he being fully perſwaded and ſatiſfied in his own mind, that I was to paſs onward, in the tender Love of our God he did the more conſtrain me; 99 O2r 909 99 me; I finding some unwillingness to leave him in that condition, which was not a little cross unto me. But in the Heavenly Will and Peace of our God, and joy of the Lord, out of all viſibly we parted aſunder; and it came to paſs, that he laid down his body there in about two days after.
There being a Ship of Venice ready, I embarqued on the ſame, and had a good paſſage through the Gulf of Venice. After three Weeks were finished, was I admitted (together with the Ships company) to receive Product or Admiſſion to come into the City as their manner is; and there I continued about eight days as a ſign and wonder among many, and gave ſomewhat of a ſound of the Lord’s Day (in truth) among them; and from thence I travelled to Legorn, and my face was as if it were ſet towards England, I being alone, as a Mourning-Dove in a deſolate Wilderneſs: Yet it came ſo to paſs, when I arrived at the ſame Port or City, that the everlaſting Love of my God did fill and overcome my heart, and mine eye right dearly affected the ſame; and verily the living Word and Commandment of my God ſounded in mine ear, and mine underſtanding was quickened in the Spirit of Life from God, ſo that I was made willing, and not to rebel against the Heavenly Voice, [And what if I teſtifie, that mine eye ſaw the Angel of his preſence?] which was expreſsly for me to give up, and paſs away from thence, to viſit his long ſuffering Seed of Innocency, ſhut up in the Inquiſition, in the Isle of Malta, under the Pope’s Authority, and to communicate to their neceſſities; and verily the ſweet promiſe of the Lord entered and poſſeſſed my heart, and my God made my way proſperous; for in the Light of his countenance he had often ſet theſe poor, afflicted, longſuffering innocents before my face: Wherefore my body and mind was freely offered up as my reaſonable ſervice, to ſerve his Truth, and the leaſt Member of it; and ſo to the death of the Croſs, whereto I became obedient in uprightneſs of heart, as if I ſhould never ſee Kindred or Native Countrey more.
A Vessel of France being ready to depart from thence Eaſtward, I embarqued thereon for the iſle of Cicilia to Muſena, and from thence to the Iſle of Malta in a Veſſel of the ſaid Iſland; and in my paſſage the Veſſel did bear in to Syracuſe, where Paul abode three days in his paſſage to Rome, (after he had ſuffered ſhip- O2 100 O2v 910 90100 abode three days in his passage to Rome (after he had ſuffered ſhipwrack on Malta;) and at Syracuſe I abode five days, where I gave a ſound of the Lord’s Truth and Life: And so we immediately ſailed from thence, and within 24 hours we arrived at the Iſland of Malta; and within some hours after I came upon the ſaid Iſland, I had admittance to the Pope’s Lord Inquiſitor, to whom I delivered my Meſſage in the Italian Tongue, on this wiſe, I am come to demand the juſt Liberty of my innocent Friends, the two Engliſh women in priſon in the Inquiſition: And he asked, if I were related to them as a Huſband or Kinſman, and whether I came out of England on purpose with that Message. And I answered, I came from Legorn for that same end; and he replied at last, They ſhould abide in Priſon till they dye, except ſome Engliſh Merchants or others that were able, would engage or give obligation for the value of three or four thouſand dollers conditionally, that they ſhould never return again into thoſe parts.
On this wiſe was his reply divers times, with the Conſul and many others, together and aſunder; but in the Name and fear of the Lord God I withſtood the ſame unchriſtian-like demand and cruelty, in the Word, Power and Travel of the Lord in his innocent, ſuffering Lambs behalf. albeit they daily threatned me with their cruelty and Inquiſition of darkneſs, and followed me to and fro with their Officer and Black-Rod, and the Popes Deputy would have bound me that I ſhould neither ſpeak good nor evil to any one while I was on the Iſland, as the Conſul ſaid, ſave to him; neither to come to the Priſon alone, except the Conſul came alſo with me, or ſome of his Family at leaſt: But their ſnares, Bonds and Covenants, in the Name of the Lord gave me Dominion through ſufferings in Spirit, Firſt over their unjuſt, dark Impoſitions; yea, and in the ſame good authority, in the innocency and uprightneſs of my heart, I travelled through, and over the darkneſs over its works, and ceaſed not to publiſh the end of my coming, which they would not have known abraod, & tghe ſound of Truth, and its dread and fame ſtruck terror in their hearts, that both high and wiſe great men, together with the Popiſh Prieſts and Jeſuits, knights them called of the Nobility, or the Pope’s Dominion of Spain and France, and of many Nations; they did not burthen themſelves a little with my bodily preſence, my clear te911ſtimony 101 O3r 911 101 ſtimony, and Friends in general, all which they defied and withſtood, as it doth appear by the words of Truth in this Treatiſe.
And thus it comes to paſs among the Nations, becauſe we are not of this world, as our Life and Teſtimony alſo is not for, but againſt the ſame; therefore we marvel not if the world hate us, knowing its birth which is from beneath, earthy and ſenſual, perſecuteth that which is from above, heavenly and ſpiritual, and ſo the Lord hath made me as a burthenſome ſtone among them. My heart bleſſeth his Name that wonderfully preſerved me. yet ſome of them came to ſee ſomewhat of my innocency.
About 24. dayes I abode upon the ſaid Iſland, they daily continuing their threatnings againſt me as aforeſaid, and many times attempted to take my paſſge to Cicillia, or to ſome parts of Italy, to produce the unreaſonable and unchriſtian-like Obligation demanded by them; but in the fear of God I, with my dear friends, withſtood them, and they were freely given up, rather to ſuffer, then to hurt God’s truth and people thus to gratifie them, who (as it doth appear) the Spirit of the Lord God of truth rules neither in Pope, nor in any of his Lords, Prieſts or Jeſuits, that exerciſeth ſuch Lordſhip over the innocent, long-suffering Heritage of the everlaſting God. The time hasteneth, and behold it cometh to paſs, that the weight of eternal Vengeance is coming over them, which the man of ſin, and his ſons of perdition will not be able to bear: For the doleful cry of the Innocent, it ſighs and groans with tears, hath long uttered its voice, which hath aſcended into the ears of the moſt high, who is higher hen the higheſt, yet hath he reſpect unto the needy, to uphold them, yea and to ſuch as are of an upright, contrite, lowly, and trembling heart; What if I ſhould ſay, the God of love and long-suffeering dwels in ſuch? and verily their ſacrifice is acceptable in his boſome that liveth for ever; and I am a living witneſs, that the ſweet teſtimony and innocent ſufferings of theſe his long-suffering Lambs, is right dear and precious in his eye, which is the light of his countenance; and ſo is is not otherwiſe, but the ſame in oneneſs with his people concerning them.
And ſo in the endleſs Mercy, Bleſſing and Peace of our God we parted, and I came away with the love and peace of my God within my heart, having the anſwer and living teſtimony of a good Conſcience; and in the wiſdom of God brought awa y theſe their words and writings, which teſtifieth ſomewhat of their ſufferings and faithfulneſs unto the Lord, his truth an people, which right well know, cannot be ſhut out of the Record of life Eternal, unto which I bear record agian, that they have been, and are a ſweet favour unto the Lord God of faithfulneſs, and ſo their reward, which attends the ſame, not onely with them, but with all the ſons and daughters of truth and innocency, that are ſo travelling in their long-sufferings, which are but light and momentary in competition to the Eternal weight of glory which afterwards is to be revealed in the ſame that ſuffered in all generations, even from righteous Abel, unto this day of our God, to whom be widom, glory, ſalvation, and everlaſting thankſgivings and dominion, for ever, Amen, ſaith my ſoul and ſpirit, even ſo Amen.
And it came to paſs in the third month of the year 1662. alſo after my God had well preſerved me in my paſſage, and in his work and ſervice from Malta to diverſe places in Italy, till I came to the Straights Mouth (of the Mediter- 102 O3v 912 102 Mediterranean Sea) at the place called Gibralter, it was the pleaſure of the Lord God to ſuffer the wind and weather to continue contrary well nigh about 30 daies, in which ſeaſon I ſuffered many trials and tribulations in ſpirit, having little or no reſt in the ſame, becauſe of the Viſion and words of the Everlaſting whcih ſounded often up to my underſtanding, even as the roaring of a Lyon, which mine eye ſaw, and mine ear heard alſo [in the year --61. when I was a Priſoner for the pure Word and teſtimony of God and his Truth, in Worceſter City layl, before I departed England] and the place was the high Mountain of Gibralter that ſtands within the King of Spains Dominion, which was the subject of the Viſion; and ofen as I caſt mine eye upon the ſcituation of the place, the pure life and power of God’s Eternal preſence did ariſe up in me, in the word of Life, ſo that I ſaw clearly that ſome great exceeding weighty service for his Name and eternal Truths ſake was to be done by me, which was ſo terrible and dreadful to me, when as I entred into reaſoning ſo that I was brought down even to the jaws of death in duſt and aſhes; and as Jonah turned his back upon Niniveh, the ſame temptation attended me alſo, to my wounding, before I could give up; for I fled often from the place to eſcape with my life from among ſuch an unreaſonable and bloody generation, and the Lord would not be intreated to let ſuch a bitter Cup paſs unfulfilled, but behold with the ſound and ſtroak of his eternal Word, his ſpirit of Life became awakened, quickned and mightily revived in me, in his Wiſdom, over all fear of the Nations of men, and the ſame brake through the ſnares and bonds of death, and over deſtruction and the true feed that mourned, cried, Not my will, but thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven; and ſo it was a hard thing to part with little Iſaac which is received again in the Covenant of promiſe of Life, and that was offered up which fled ſo often (but at laſt was caught in a thicket). When the ſhips of diverſe Nations attempted to paſs through; but the God of heaven, whom the wind and ſea opbeieth, ſuffered them not, but they knew not what the matter was which was revealed within my heart, as the diſpleaſure of God was againſt them, tohumble them alſo as I told them often by words and writings to clear my conſcience; albeit they ſtrove, being perplexed in their minds, and attempted often, to wit 7 or 8 times in about 21 daies, and could not paſs but about 2 or 3 leagues, and on this wiſe it happened, it would ether prove calm, and then the currant would drive them back into the ſtreights again ſometimes, and otherwhile storms and tempeſts would ſcatter them, as a figure of Pharaoh and his Hoſte of Egyptian darkneſs, ſo that the Chathree charactersflawed-reproduction-wheels mine eye ſaw ſtruck off, ſo that they drove but heavily, within, and without; and at laſt I gave out among them, that God had ſervice for me to do at that place, and my life was given up to do his will, if I never ſaw my Native Country, Kindred, or Fathers houſe at all any more; and therefore the pleaſure of the Lord in his mighty power had made me willing and alſo gave me dominion through and over the bonds and ſnares of death and deſtruction, as it were to lay down my precious life, that I may take it again, together with the body, which through his righteous judgments he had prepared to perform the good pleaſure of his Almightineſs, for his Truth and Names ſake. Now the heavenly voice was often ſounded within my heart on this wiſe, ſaying; O Jeruſalem, cut off thine hair, and furthermore to gird ſackcloth on my loins, As to the Prophet Jeremy, Chap. 7. 29. 103 O4r 913 103 and ſo I became obedient in the ſingleneſs and innocency of my heart, unto the God of Heaven, of my life, as a dreadful ſign againſt the Whoriſh Church of Rome, and againſt all her Heads and Horns throughout the world: And I then ſignified to the Maſter of the ſhip in which I was a paſſenger, how that I did bewlieve that God would ſoon give opportunity for the Fleet of ſhips to paſs away after this ſervice of God was performed, & after I had uſed many perſwaſions, to the end that he might ſuffer my body on that wiſe to be caſt among the wicked idolaters, lyars and murtherers, which are like the troubled ſea. So the ſhip-Maſter let my body Iſaiah 57.20. be on this wiſe caſt over board from the ſhip, [God having provided a great Waale to ſwallow up that which fled from his preſence ſo often] and ſo it happened, that it was upon one of their called Holy-dayes, or Saints days, namely, the day called Holy-Thurſday.
So I being caſt on dry land, paſſed through their ſtreets directly, until I came into the Maſs-Houſe or Idolater temple, among the Idolaters, where I found the Fryer, or Prieſt, at the high Altar, down upon his knees, in his white Surplice, adoring of the Hoſt, (which is a Chalice, or a piece of bread, which they call the real ſubſtance of the body of Chriſt, after their unclean spirit of darkneſs hath muttered ſome words over it, which they call Conſecration:) and after I had ſtood a ſeaſon viewing this Idolatry with the indignation of the Eternal God ſet up within my heart againſt the ſame, I turned my back-part upon the Prieſt, and his dead God, and dumb Idols, at the high Altar; and in the holy Commandment of life eternal, my face was ſet towards the people, and I beheld them a certain ſeaſon in the power of God in which I ſtood; I ſaw the multitude of ignorant people upon their knees alſo, worſhipping the dark inventions and imaginations of their ſottiſh leaders, and blind guides, and they know not what; and in the Lord’s time (which mine eye had a circumſpect heed unto) I then ſpread forth my arms, and ſtript off my Veſture, and rent the ſame from top to bottom, in divers pieces, and caſt them from me with indignation. And then I took my Hat off my head, which was the uppermoſt covering of the outſide of a man) and caſt the same under my feet, and ſtamped upon theſe things; and the nakedneſs appeared with the ſack-cloath covering, to their aſtoniſhment; and then with a dear voice I ſounded Repentance three times, and gave teſtimony as the sound of a trumpet among them, that the life of Chriſt and his ſaints was ariſensen from the dead; and ſo paſſed away. ſounding the ſame words of the Lord’s Meſſage, with Repentance, through the ſtreets, as it were, flying from the Idols temple, and from Idolatry, and Idolaters, until I came to the ſeaside, and there was I moved to kneel down and pray, and give thanks to the living Lord, who had ſo wonderfully preſerved me in doing his pleaſure and good will on earth; and he ſuffered no man to touch or do me harm,
And on the next day following the Lord God gave opportunity accordingly as I had let the Ship-maſter know I believed would come to paſs, and it was so, and all the Fleet did partake of the bleſſing: But how many of them rewarded me (men of my own Nation, to whom I alſo continued a ſign, which they ſpake bitter things againſt) the Lord my God ſaw the ſame, and ſmote them with rebuke and aſtoniſhment in his diſpleaſure, who in his wiſe determinate Counſel, ordained me for many dayes and nights to be tryed on this wiſe, and to fall among divers temptations afterwards, the which as a mighty Hoſt 104 O4v 914 104 Hoſt ſurrounded and beſet me on every hand, immediately after I had done the good will in his all-ſufficient power and ſtrenth; thus the Enemy with his subtilty in a myſterie was ſuffered to compaſs me about, to ſteale away my peace and reward with my God, in whom the ſame is hid; and then I was in a bleſſed condition, though ſometime veiled for a little ſeaſon, and then the Fathers countenance was hid from mine eye, and therefore was I troubled: Yet bleſſed are ye when you fall among divers temptations, ſaith one; and verily they were even as thorns in my fleſh, yea as Meſſengers of Satan ſuffered to buffet me for a ſeaſon, even as the ſervant of God witneſſed, who was wrapt up into the third Heaven: What if I ſhould ſomewhat teſtifie, ſo was it with me, leſt I ſhould be exalted above meaſure, ſo that i was made to bow and fall upon my face, and cry day and night to the Lord of Eternal life, that had reſpect to the tears of the innocent, and bowed the ſtrength of his arm to ſupport the lowly: And ſo his Almightineſs gave ear to the ſighs and groans of my diſtreſſed ſtate, and had reſpect unto the voice of my mourning, as a Dove or Pelican in the Wilderneſs; and verily his Grace I found ſufficient to ſave and preſerve my innocency, in its ſweet life of holineſs to the Lord, through all this, and that which letted, ſalvation to his Name, Amen. ſo his ſtrength is made perfect in weakneſs, even ſo it is in truth, in which I ſet to my ſeal of my right hand, that God is true, in which life I give thanks to his Name of Power and Defence, the which over all Nations is to be exalted in the hearts of his ſaints, as in the ancient dayes, yea and much more abundantly in the Light of his bright ſhining countenance, in which his Eternal and excellent glory, and pure dreadful Majeſty; for ever hath his holy habitation; to whom be endleſs Dominion, with praiſes living and everlaſting, over all, Amen.Written in Newgate this 1662-05-185th Month, the 18th. day, 1662. where he ſuffereth Bonds together with many Brethren of Truth, for one and the ſame Teſtimony of the Lord Jeſus, not for evil doing or ſpeaking, but againſt the ſame: For we ſuffer becauſe we cannot otherwiſe but meet together in the Name and Fear of God; neither ſwear at all, neither by Heaven, nor by Earth, nor by any other Oath, Matth. 5. James 5.12. D.B.
A Copy of a Paper which was written in the Spaniſh Tongue, and delivered the ſame day that I was upon the Service, directed as followeth, Viz.
For the Governor and Inhabitants of Gibletore, in the Kingdom of Spain:
Behold, behold, the great day of God is come, and of his wrath, and of the wrath of his Lamb is come, and the hour of his Judgements is come, Wherefore Oh Inhabitants of the earth, Repent, Repent, Repent, and fear God, and give glory & honor to him that made Heaven and Earth, and the Fountains of the Waters: Wo, wo, wo to the Inhabitants of the earth: And I heard another voice from Heaven, ſaying, Come out of her my people, that ye parſake not of her ſins, & that ye receive not of her plagues. Theſe are the words of the power of Chriſt that is contrary to the falſe Church.
Behold, behold, Plagues, Plagues, Plagues are coming upon the Church of Rome and upon her Heads in England, & in all parts of the world. And the Woman which thou ſaweſt is that great City which reigneth over the Kings of the earth; and he ſaith unto me, the waters which thou ſaweſt where the Whore ſitteth, are Peoples, Nation, Multitudes and Tongues, &c;
Theſe words, with a Paper in Latine with the honeſt words of truth, was delivered with many more Scriptures in their own Language, that they may read, underſtand, repent, & ceaſe from idolatry, & from all nngodlineſs, that the bleſſings of Eternal life might ariſe through Judgments, & have room among the Nations, to the eternal glory & renown of the Lord God over all who is bleſſed forever Amen