Pagina-afbeeldingen
PDF
ePub

resort to the house of God in An neck, and to have my claim made woth, from which I am banished. good with real possession! I think Temptations, that I supposed to be my love to Christ hath feet abundstricken dead, and laid upon their ance, and runneth swiftly to be at back, rise again and revive upon me; him, but it wanteth hands and fin. yea, I see, that, while I live, tempta- gers to apprehend him. I think I tions will not die; the devil seemeth would give Christ every morning my to brag and boast as much, as if he blessing, to have as much faith as I had more court with Christ than 1| have love and hunger ; at least, I miss have; and as if he had charmed and faith, more than love or hunger. 2. blasted my ministry, that shall do no I see mortification, and to be crucimore good in public; but his wind fied to the world, is not so highshaketh no corn. I will not believe ly accounted of by us, as it should Christ would have made such a mint be. O how heavenly a thing is it to to have me to himself, and have ta- be dead, dumb, and deaf to this ken so much pains upon me, as he world's sweet music! I confess it hath done ; nay, since I came to hath pleased his Majesty to make me Aberdeen, I have been taken up to laugh at children, who are wooing see the new land, the fair palace of this world for their match: I see the Lamb: and will Christ let me men lying about the world as nobles see heaven, to break my heart, and about a king's court; and I wonder never give it to me? I shall not think what they are all doing there: as I my Lord Jesus giveth a dumb ear. am at this present, I would scorp to nest, or putteth his seals to blank court such a feckless and petty prinpaper, or intendeth to put me off cess, or buy this world's kindness with fair and false promises : I see with a bow of my knee. I scarce that now which I never saw well be now either hear or see what it is fore; 1. I see faith's necessity in a that this world offereth I know fair day is never known aright; but it is little it can take from me, and now I miss nothing so much as faith. as little it can give me. I recomHunger in me runneth lo fair and mend mortification to you above any sweet promises ; but when I come I thing: for alas, we but chase feathers am like a hungry man that wanteth flying in the air, and tire our own teeth, or a weak stomach having a spirits, for the froth and overgilded sharp appetite, that is filled with the clay of a dying life; one sight of very sight of meat, or like one stupi. what my Lord hath let me see with. fied with cold under the water, that in this short time, is worth a world would fain come to land, but cannot of worlds. 3. I thought courage in grip any thing casten to him : I can the time of trouble for Christ's sake, let Christ grip me, but I cannot grip a thing that I might take up at my him. I love to be kissed, and to sit foot; I thought that the very reon Christ's knee, but I cannot set membrance of the honesty of the my feet to the ground, for afflictions cause would be enough ; but I was bring the cramp upon my faith. All a fool in so thinking; I have much I can do, is to hold out a lame faith ado now to win to one smile; but I to Christ, like a beggar holding out see joy groweth up in heaven, and it a stump, instead of an arm or leg, is above our short arm; Christ will and crying, Lord Jesus, work a mi. be steward and dispenser himself, racle. O what would I give to have and none else but he ; therefore, hands and arms, to grip strongly, now, I count much of one drachm and fold heartsomely about Christ's weight of spiritual joy; one smile of

me ;

Christ's face is now to me as a king-, name, the fire cannot burn the dry dom, and yet he is no niggard to tree; he is pleased now to feast the me of comforts; truly, I have no exiled prisoner with his lovely precause to say, that I am pinched with sence; for it suiteth Christ well to penury, or that the consolations of be kind, and he dineth and suppeth Christ are dried up: for he hath with such a sinner as I am. I an in poured down rivers upon a dry wil. Christ's tutoring here; he hath made derness, the like of me, to my ad- me content with a borrowed firemiration : and in my very swoonings, side, and it casteth as much heat as he holdeth up my head, and stayeth mine own: I want nothing but real me with flagons of wine, and com- possession of Christ : and he hath forteth me with apples; my house given me á pawn of that also, which and bed are strewed with kisses of I hope to keep till he come himself love. Praise, praise with me. O if to loose the pawn. I cannot get ye and I betwixt us could lift up help to praise his high name: he Christ

upon his throne, howbeit all hath made me king over my losses, Scotland should cast him down to imprisonment, banishment, and only the ground! My brother's case my dumb sabbaths stick in

my

throat: toucheth me near: I hope ye will be but I forgive Christ's wisdom in that; kind to him, and give him your best I dare not say one word, he hath counsel. Remember my love to done it, and I will lay my hand upon your brother, to your wife, and my mouth; if any other had done G. M. desire him to be faithful, and it to me, I could not have borne it. repent of his hypocrisy, and say that Now, my Lord, I must tell your I wrote it to you; I wish him salva. Lordship, that I would not give à vation. Write to me your mind drink of cold water for this clay-idol, anent C. E. and C. Y. and their this plaistered world

I testify, and wives, and I. G. or any others in my give it under my own hand, that parish; I fear I am forgotten amongst Christ is most worthy to be suffered them; but I cannot forget them. for. Our lazy flesh, which would The prisoner's prayers and blessing have Christ to cry down crosses by come upon you. Grace, grace be open proclamation, hath but raised

a slander upon the cross of Christ. Your brother in the Lord Jesus, My Lord, I hope ye will not forget Aberdeen; Feb. 9, 1637.

S'R what he hath done for your soul: I

think ye are in Christ's count-book, Sosoo

as his obliged debtor, Grace, grace

be with your spirit. LETTER CVIII.

Your Lordship's oóliged servant, To my Lord BALMERINOCH. My very noble & truly honourable Lord,

Aberdeen, March 13, 1637. S. R. I AM bold to write news to your Lordship from my prison, though your Lordship have experience more

LETTER CIX. than I can have. At my first entry To ALEXANDER GORDON of Knockgray. here I was not a little casten dowo Dear Brother, with challenges, for old unrepented-of Grace, mercy, and peace be to you. sins; and Satan and my own appre- I long to hear how

soul

pros: hensions made a lie of Christ, that pereth: I expected letters from you he had casten a dry withered tree ere now. As for myself, I am here over the dyke of the vineyard ; but it in good case, well feasted with a was my folly ; blessed be his great great King: at my first coming here,

with you.

your

I was that bold as to take up a jeal-, or to clay ; Christ hath made me ousy of Christ's love; I said I was dead to that ; I now wonder that cast over the dyke of the Lord's vine-ever I was such a child long since, yard, as a dry tree; but I see, if I as to beg at such beggars ! fy upon had been a withered branch, the fire us, who woo such a black-skinned would have burnt me long ere now : harlot, when we may get such a fair, blessed be his high name, who hath fair match in heaven. O that I kept sap in the dry tree; and now, could give up with this clay-i:lol, as if Christ had done the wrong, he this masked, painted, gilded dirt, hath made the amends, and hath that Adam's sons adore ! we make an miskent my ravings ; for a man un- idol of our will; as many lusts in us, der the water cannot well command as many gods ; we are all god-makhis wit, far less his faith and love; ers: we are like to lose Christ the because it was a fever, my Lord Jes- true God, in the throng of these us forgave me that, amongst the new and false gods. Scotland hath rest : he knoweth, in our afflictions, cast her crown off her head; the virwe can find a spot in the fairest face gin-daughter hath lost her garland : that ever was, even in Christ's face. wo, wo to our harlot mother: our I would not have believed that a day is coming, a time when women gloom should have made me to mis- shall wish they had been childless, ken my old Master ; but we must be and fathers shall bless miscarrying whiles sick ; sickness is but kindly wombs and dry breasts; many houses to both faith and love. But O how great and fair shall be desolate. exceedingly is a poor dawted prison- This kirk shall sit on the ground all er obliged to sweet Jesus! My tears the night, and the tears shall run are sweeter to me, than the laughter down her cheeks ; the sun hath gone of the fourteen prelates to them; the down upon her prophets ; blessed worst of Christ, even his chaff, is are the prisoners of hope, who can better than the world's corn. Dear run in to their strong hold, and hide brother, I beseech you, I charge you themselve for a little till the indignain the name and authority of the Son tion be overpast. Commend me to of God, help me to praise his High- your wife, your daughters, your sonness; and I charge you also, to tell in-law, and to A. T. Write to me all your acquaintance, that my Mas- the case of your kirk. Grace be ter may get many thanks. O if my with you. I am much moved for hairs, all my members, and all my my brother; I intreat for

your

kind. bones, were well tuned tongues, to ness and counsel to him. sing the high praises of my great and

Your's in his sweet Lord Jesus, glorious King ! Help me to lift Christ Aberdeen, Feb. 23, 1637.

S. R. up upon his throne, and to lift him up above all the thrones of the clay. kings, the dying sceptre-bearers of

LETTER CX. this world. The prisoner's blessing, the blessing of him that was separat

To my Lady, MARR Younger, ed from his brethren, be upon them My very notle and dear Lady, all who will lend me a lift in this Grace, mercy, and peace be to you. work. Shew this to that people with I received your Ladyship’s letter, you to whom sometime i preached. which hath comforted my soul. Brother, my Lord hath brought to God give you to find mercy in the this, that I will not flatter the world day of Christ. I am in as good for a drink of water. I am no debt-terms and court with Christ, as an

exiled oppressed prisoner of Christ your journey to heaven: it will be can be; I am still welcome to his the joy of my heart, to hear that ye house;

he knoweth my knock, and hold your face, up the brae, and letteth in a poor friend. Under this wade through tentations, without black rough tree of the cross of fearing whạt man can do. Christ Christ, he hath ravished me with his shall, when he ariseth, mow down love, and taken my heart to heaven his enemies, and lay bulks, as they with him ; well and long may he use to speak, on the green, and fill brook it. I would not niffer Christ the pits with dead bodies; Psalm with all the joys that man or angel cx. 6. They shall lye like handfuls of can devise beside him. Who hath withered hay, when he ariseth to the such cause to speak honourably of prey. Salvation, salvation is the onChrist as I have ? Christ is king of ly necessary thing: this clay-idol, all crosses, and he hath made his the world, is not to be sought; it is saints little kings under him, and he a morsel not for you, but for hun. can ride and triumph upon weaker ger.bitten bastards. Contend for bodies than I am, if any can be salvation : your master Christ won weaker, and his horse will neither heaven with strokes ; it is a besiegfall nor stumble. Madam, your La- ed castle, it must be taken with vio. dyship hath much ado with Christ, lence. O this world thinketh heav. for your soul, husband, children, en but at the next door, and that and house ; let him find much em godliness may sleep in a bed of ployment for his calling with you; down, till it come to heaven, but for he is such a friend as delighteth that will not do it. For myself, I to be burdened with suits and em- am as well as Christ's prisoner can ployments; and the more ye lay on be; for by him I am master and him, and the more homely ye be king of all my crosses ; I am above with him, the more welcome. Oh the prison, and the lash of men's the depth of Christ's love! it hath tongues ; Christ triumpheth in me. neither brim nor bottom. O if this I have been casten down, and heavy blind world saw his beauty! When with fears, and hunted with challenI count with him for his mercies to ges: I was swimming in the depths, me, I must stand still and wonder, but Christ had his hand under my and go away as a poor dyvour, who chin a'l the time, and took good hath nothing to pay; free forgive- heed that I should not lose breath : ness is payment. I would I could and now I have gotten my fect aget bim set on high ; for his love gain, and there are love-feasts of hath made me sick, and I die except joy, and spring-tides of consolation I get real possession. Grace be betwixt Christ and me: we agree

well; I have court with him ; I am Your Ladyship's at all obedience in still welcome to his house. Christ,

S. R.

short arms cannot fathom his love! Aberdeen, March 19, 1637.

I beseech you, I charge you, help @ceae

me to praise. Ye have a prisoner's

prayers, therefore forget me not. I LETTER CXI.

desire Sibilla to remember me dear

ly to all in that parish who know My very dear and worthy Friend, Christ, as if I had named them. Grace, mercy, and peace be to you. Grace, grace be with you. I long to hear of your growing in Your's in his sweet Lord Jesus, grace, and of your advancing on Aberdeen, March 15, 1637. S. R.

with you.

O my

TO JAMES MADAM,

run away

ness.

LETTER CXII.
you. I long to hear from

you.

I To my very dear brother WILLIAM LIV. am here the Lord's prisoner and paINGSTON

tient, handled as softly by my PhyMy very dear Brother, I Rejoice to hear that Christ hath sician, as if I were a sick man under with

I was at hard terms with my your young love, and curc. that ye are so early in the morning Lord, and pleaded with him, but í matched with such a lord; for a

had the worst side: it is a wonder young man is often a dressed lodg. he should have suffered the like of ing for the devil to dwell in. Be me to have nicknamed the Son of humble and thankful for grace, and his love, Christ, and to call him a weigh it not so much by weight, as changed Lord, who had forsaken if it be true; Christ will not cast me; but misbelief hath never a good water on your smoaking coal; he word to speak of Christ. The dross never yet put out a dim candle that of my cross gathered a scum of fears was lighted at the sun of righteous in the fire, doubtings, impatience,

I recommend to you prayer unbelief, challenging of providence and watching over the sins of

as sleeping, and not regarding mỹ

your youth; for I know missive letters go sorrow; but my goldsmith, Christ, between the devil and young blood; was pleased to take off the scum, Satan hath a friend at court in the and burn it in the fire. And, blesheart of youth; and there pride, sed be my finer, he hath made the Juxury, lust, revenge, forgetfulness metal better, and furnished new supof God, are hired as his agents. ply of grace, to cause me hold out Happy is your soul, if Christ man weight; and I hope he hath not lost the house, and take the keys himself, one grain-weight by burning his serand command all; as it suiteth him vant.

Now his love in my heart full well to rule all, wherever he is. casteth a mighty heat; he knoweth, Keep Christ, and entertain him well, that the desire i have to be at himcherish his grace, blow upon your and frequent fits of love-fevers for

self paineth me. I have sick nights own coal, and let him tutor you. Now for myself: know, I am fully my Well-beloved; nothing paineth agreed with my Lord; Christ hath me now but want of presence. I pat the Father and me in other's think it long till day; I challenge arms; many a sweet bargain he time, as too slow in its pace, that made before, and he hath made this holdeth my only, only fair One, my among the rest. I reign 'as king ,

Love, my Well-beloved from me: ver my crosses; I will not flatter å

O if we were together once! I am temptation, nor give the devil a

like an old crazed ship that hath engood word; I defy hell's iron gates:

dured many storms, and that would God hath past over my quarrelling

fain be in the lee of the shore, and of him at my entry here, and now

feareth new storms; I would be that he feedeth and feasteth with me ; nigh heaven, that the shadow of it praise, praise with me, and let us ex- might break the force of the storm, alt his name together.

and the crazed ship might win to Your Brother in Christ,

land. My Lord's sun casteth a heat Aberdeen, March 13, 1637.

of love and beam of light on my

soul. My blessing thrice every day LETTER CXIII.

upon the sweet cross of Christ. I To WILLIAM GORDON of Whitepark.

am not ashamed of my garland, the Worthy Sir,

banished minister, which is the term Grace, mercy, and peace be unto of Aberdeen. Love, love deficth

S. R.

« VorigeDoorgaan »