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TO ROBERT GORDON of Knockbrex.
you most kindly for the care of my make them welcome ; but when the brother, and me also; I hope it is King's train cometh, and the King laid
and remembered in in the midst of the company, O how heaven. I am still ashamed with I am overjoyed with floods of love! Christ's kindness to such a sinner as I fear not, that too great speats of I am; he hath left a fire in my heart, love wash away the growing corn, that hell cannot cast water on, to and loose my plants at the roots : quench or extinguish it. Help me Christ doth no skaith where he comto praise, and pray for me; for ye eth; but certainly, I would wish have a prisoner's blessing and prayers. such spiritual wisdom, as to love the Remember my love to your wife. Bridegroom better than his gifts, his Grace be with you.
propine, or drink-money. I would Your's in Christ Jesus,
be further in upon Christ, than at Aberdeen, March 15, 1637. S. R. his joys, they but stand in the out
er side of Christ; I would wish to be in, as a seal on his heart; in, where
his love and mercy lodgeth, beside LETTER CXX.
his heart. My Well-beloved hath
ravished me; but it is done with conMy very dear Brother,
sent of both parties, and it is allowGRACE, mercy, and peace be unto able enough; but my dear brother, you. I thought to have answered ere I part with this subject, I must your two letters on this occasion, tell you, that ye may lift up my though I cannot say all that I King in praises with me, Christ hath would. Your timeous word, not been keeping something these fourto delight in the cross, but in him teen years for me, that I have now who sweeteneth it, came to me in gotten in my heavy days, that I am due time. I find the consolations in for his name's sake; even an opand off-fallings that follow the cross ened coffer of perfumed comforts, of Christ, so sweet, that I almost and fresh joys, coming new, and forget myself: my desire and pur- green, and powerful, from the fair. pose is, when Christ's honey.combs est, fairest face of Christ, my Lord. drop, neither to refuse to receive Let the sour law, let crosses, let hell and feed upon his comforts, nor yet be cried down; love, love hath shamto make joy my bastard-god, or my ed me from my old ways. Whether new-found heaven. But what shall I have a race to run, or some work I say? Christ very often, in his to do, see not; but I think Christ sweet comforts, cometh unsent for, seemeth to leave heaven, to say so, and it were a sin to close the door and his court, and come down to upon him: it is not unlawful to love laugh, and play, and sport with a and delight in Christ's apples, when foolish child. I am not thus plain I am not doatingly wooing, nor ea- with many I write to: it is possible gerly begging kisses; but when they I be misconstructed, and deemed to come clean from the timber, like seek a name; but my Witness above kindness itself, that cometh of its knoweth I seek to have a good name own accord, then I cannot but raised upon Christ. I observe it to laugh upon him who laugheth upon be our folly, to seek little from me: if joy and comforts come sin- Christ, because our four-hours may gle and alone, without Christ him-not be our supper ; nor our propine self, I think I would send them back sent by the Bridegroom our tocheragain the gait they came, and not good ; nor our earnest our principal
sum. But I trow, few of us know and to take the wind upon my face how much may be had of Christ for for him. Lord, let me never be a a four-hours, and propine, and ear- false witness, to deny that I saw nest, We are like the young heir, Christ take the pen in his hand, and who knoweth not the whole bounds subscribe my writs. My dear broof his own lordship. Certainly, it is ther, ye complain to me, ye cannot more than my part to say, O sweet- hold sight of me: but were I a footest Lord Jesus, what, howbeit I were man, I would go at leisure; but split and broken in five thousand sometimes the King taketh me into shreds or bits of clay, so being ev- his coach, and draweth me; and ery shred had a heart to love thee, then I outrun myself: but alas, I and every one as many tongues as am still a forlorn transgressor! Oh there are in heaven, to sing praises how thankful! I will not put you to thee, before men and angels for off your sense of darkness; but let evermore? Therefore, if my suffer- me say this, Who gave you proctorings cry goodness, and praise, and fee, to speak for the law, that can honour upon Christ, my stipend is speak for itself, better than ye can well paid. Each one knoweth not do? I would not have you to bring what a life Christ's love is. Scar your dittay in your own bosom with not at suffering for Christ; for Christ you to Christ ; let the old man and hath a chair, and a cushion, and the rew man be summoned before sweet peace for a sufferer: Christ's Christ's white throne, and let them trencher from the first mess of the be confronted before Christ, and let high table is for a sinful witness. O each of them speak for themselves. then, brother, who but Christ! who I hope, howbeit the new man combut Christ! Hold your tongue of plain of his lying among pots, which lovers, where he cometh out. O all maketh the believer look black; yet flesh, 0 dust and ashes, 0 angels, he can say also, 'I am comely as O glorified spirits, O all the shields the tents of Kedar.' Ye shall not of the world, be silent before him, have my advice not to bemoan your come hither, and behold our Bride deadness; but I find by some expegroom, stand still and wonder for frience, which ye knew before I knew evermore at him! Why cease we Christ, it suiteth not a ransomed to love and wonder, to kiss and a man of Christ's buying, to go and dore him? it is a hard matter, that plea for the sour law, our old fordays lye betwixt him and me, and casten husband; for we are now not hold us asunder. O how long, how under the law as a covenant, but un. long! O how many miles are there der grace. Ye are in no man's comto my Bridegroom's dwelling house ! mon but Christ's: I know, he beit is a pain to frist Christ's love any moaneth you more than you do longer. But, it may be, a drunken yourself ; 1 say this, because I am man lose his feet, and miss a step. wearied of complaining. I thought Ye write to me, hall-binks are slip- it had been humility to imagine that pery. I do not think my dawting Christ was angry with me, both be. world will still last, and that feasts cause of my dumb sabbaths, and
my will be my ordinary food ; I would haid heart; but I feel now nothing have humility, patience, and faith to but aching wounds : my grief, wheset down both my feet, when I come ther I will or not, swelleth upon me; to the north side of the cold and but let us die in grace's hall-floor, thorny hill. It is ill my common to pleading before Christ. I deny nobe swier to go an errand for Christ, thing that the Mediator will chal.
lenge me of; but I turn it all back with you. Remember my love to
Your's in his sweet Lord Jesus, saith, “I want repentance,' I meet
Aberdeen, June 11, 1638. S. R. him with this, • True, Lord; but thou art made a King and a Prince to give me repentance.' Acts v. 31. When Christ bindeth a challenge
LETTER CXXI. upon us, we must bind a promise To ALEXANDER GORDON of Earlstoun. back upon him; be low and lay Much honoured and Worthy Sir, yourself in the dust before God, Grace, mercy, and peace be unto which is suitable, but withal let you. I long to hear from you ; I Christ take the payment in his own ceived few letters since I came hither; band, and pay himself off the first am in need of a word; a dry plant end of his own merits, else he will would have some watering. My come behind for any thing that we case betwixt Christ my Lord and can do. I am every way in your me, standeth between love and jealcase, as hard hearted and dead as ousy, faith and suspicion of his love; any man;
but yet I speak to Christ it is a marvel he keepeth house with through my sleep. Let us then pro. me. I make many pleas with Christ, claim a free market for Christ, and but he maketh as many agreements swear ourselves bare, and cry on with me; I think his unchangeable him, to come without money and love hath said, I defy thee to break buy us, and take us home to our me and change me; if Christ had ransom-payer's fire-side, and let us such changeable and new thoughts of be Christ's free boarders: because my salvation, as I have of it. I think we do not pay the old, we need not I should then be at a sad loss; he hurefuse to take on Christ's new debt: moureth not a fool like me in my let us do our best, Christ will still unbelief, but rebuketh me, and fabe behind with us, and many terms thereth kindness upon me; Christ will run together. For my part, let is rather like the poor friend and me stand for evermore in his book, needy prisoner, begging love, than I for a forlorn dyvour ; I must desire am; I cannot for shame get Christ to be thus far in his common of new, said nay of my whole love; for he as to kiss his feet: I know not how will not want his errand for the seekto win to a heartsome fill and feast ing. God be thanked, my Brideof Christ's love; for I can neither groom tireth not of wooing; honour buy, nor beg, nor borrow, and yet I to him, he is a wilful suitor of my cannot want it will not want it. soul; but as love is his, pain is mine, o if I could praise him! Yea, Ithat I have nothing to give him : his would rest content with a heart sub-count-book is full of my debts of missive and dying of love for him; mercy, kindness, and free love toand howbeit I win never personally wards me; oh that I might read with in at heaven's gates, O would to watery eyes! O that he would give God, I could send in my praises to me the interest of interest to pay my incomparable Well-beloved, or back again! or rather, my soul's de cast my love-songs of that matchless sire is, that he would comprise my Lord Jesus over the walls, that they person, soul and body, love, joy, might light in his lap, before men confidence, fear, sorrow, and desire, and angels ! Now, grace, grace be and drive the poind, and let me be
O if my very
rouped and sold to Christ, and taken quiet, and to lye on the brink, on home to my Creditor's house and my side, till the water fall, and the fire-side. The Lord knoweth, if I ford be rideable : and howbeit there could, I would sell myself without be pain upon me in longing for dereversion to Christ. O sweet Lord liverance, that I may speak of him Jesus, make a market, and overbid in the great congregation; yet I all my buyers ! I dare swear, there think there is joy in that pain and is a mystery in Christ which I on-waiting; and even rejoice that he never saw; a mystery of love. Oputteth me off for a time, and shiftif he would lay by the lap of the eth me. O if I could wait on for covering that is over it, and let my all eternity, howbeit I should never longing soul see it; I would break get my soul's desire, so being he were the door, and be in upon him, to glorified ! I would wish my pain and get my fill of love ; for I am an hun- my ministry could live long to serve gered and famished soul. Oh, Sir, him; for, I know, I am a clay vessel, if you, or any other would tell him, and made for his use. how sick my soul is, dying for want broken sherds could serve to glorify of a hearty draught of Christ's love ! him! I desire Christ's grace to be Oh, if I could doat, if I may make willingly content, that my hell, exuse of that word in this case, as much cepting my hatred and displeasure, upon himself as I do
upon his love! which I put out of all play ; for subIt is a pity that Christ himself should mission to this is not called for, were not rather be my heart's choice, a preaching of his glory to men and than, Christ's manifested love. It angels, for ever and ever! When all would satisfy me, in some measure, is done, what can I add to him ? or if I had any bud to give for his what can such a clay shadow as I do? love; shall I offer him my praises ? I know he needeth not me. I have Alas, he is more than praises! I give cause to be grieved, and to melt it over to get him exalted according away in tears, if I had grace to do it, to his worth, which is above what Lord grant it to me! to see my can be known. Yet all this time I Well-beloved's fair face spitted upon am tempting him, to see if there be by dogs, to see lowns pulling the both love and anger in him against crown off my royal King's head,
I am plucked from his flock, to see my harlot mother and my dear to me, and from feeding his sweet Father agree so ill, that they lambs; I go therefore in sackcloth are going to skail, and give up house: as one who hath lost the wife of his my Lord's palace is now a nest of youth. Grief and sorrow are sus- unclean birds. Oh if harlot, harpicious, and spue out against him lot Scotland, would rue upon her the smoke of jealousies; and I say provoked Lord; and pity her good often, Shew me wherefore thou con. Husband, who is broken with her tendest with me; tell me, Lord, whorish heart! but these things are read the process against me. But hid from her eyes. I have heard of I know, I cannot answer his allegi- late of your new trial by the bishop ance; I will lose the cause, when it of Galloway. Fear not clay, worms cometh to open pleading. Oh if I meat; let truth and Christ get no could force my heart to believe wrong in your hand; it is your gain dreams to be dreams! Yet when if Christ be glorified; and your Christ giveth my fears the lie, and glory to be Christ's witness. I per. saith to me, Thou art a liar, then I suade you, your sufferings are Christ's am glad. I resolve to hope to be advantage and victory; for he is
pleased to reckon them so: Let me the King clothed in his robes royal,
hundred fold more, it may be, even in ger with a kiss of that fairest face, this life. The prayers and blessing that is like the sun in his strength at of Christ's prisoner be with you. noon-day. I would willingly sub
Your brother in his sweet Lord Jesus, scribe an ample resignation to Christ Aberdeen, 1637.
S. R. of the fourteen prelacies of this land,
and of all the most delightful plea-
of this clay god, this earth, which
Adam's foolish children worship, to To his reverend and loving brother, Mr:
have no other exercise, but to lye in
a love bed with Christ, and fill this Reverend and dear brother,
hungered and famished soul with Grace, mercy, and peace be to you. kissing, embracing, and real enjoy. I received your's of April 11th, as I ing of the Son of God: and I think did another of March 25th, and a then I might write to my friends, letter for Mr. Andrew Cant. I That I had found the golden world, am not a little grieved, that our mo- and look out and laugh at the poor ther-church is running so quickly to bodies, who are slaying one another the brothel-house, and that we are for feathers: for verily, brother, hiring lovers, and giving gifts to the since I came to this prison, I have great mother of fornications : alas, conceived a new and extraordinary that our husband is like to quit us 80 opinion of Christ, which I had not shortly! It were my part, if I were before ; for I perceive, we frist all able, when our Husband is departo our joys of Clirist, till he and we be ing, to stir up myself to take hold in our own house above, as married of him, and keep him in this land; parties; thinking that there is, nofor I know him to be a sweet second, thing of it here to be sought or found, and a lovely companion to a poor but only hope and fair promises; and prisoner. I find my extremity hath liat Christ will give us nothing here sharpened the edge of his love and hut tears, sadness, crosses; and that kindness, so as he seemeth to devise we shall never feel the smell of the new ways of expressing the sweet. flowers of that high garden of paradise ness of his love to my soul. Suffer- above, till we come there. Nay, but I ing for Christ is the very element find it is possible to find young glory, wherein Christ's love liveth, and ex. and a young green paradise of joy, erciseth itself, in casting out flames even here. I know, Christ's kisses will of fire and sparks of heat, to warm cast a more strong and refreshful such a frozen heart as I have; and smell of incomparable glory and joy if Christ weeping in sackcloth be so in heaven, than they do here; besweet, I cannot find any imaginable cause a drink of the well of life, up thoughts to think what he will be, at the well's head, is more sweet and when we clay bodies, having put off fresh by far, than that which we get mortality, shall come up to the mar- in our borrowed, old, running out riage-hall and great palace, and behold (vessels, and our wooden dishes here: