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and prisoner; I am in the hands me; but because beholders, that of mine enemies;, I would, honest stand on dry land, see not my sea and lawful means were essayed, for storm: the witnesses of my sad bringing me home to my charge, how cross are but strangers to my sad when Mr. A. R. and Mr. H. R. are days and nights, that Christ restored. It concerneth you of Gal- would let me alone, and speak love loway most, to use supplications and to me, and come home to me, and addresses for this purpose, and try if bring summer with him! Othat by fair means I can be brought back I might preach his beauty and glory, again. As for liberty, without I be as once I did, before my clay-tent be restored to my flock, it is little to me; removed to darkness : and that I for my silence is my greatest prison; might lift Christ off the ground, and however it be, I wait for the Lord, my branches might be watered with I hope not to rot in my sufferings; the dew of God, and my joy in his Lord give me submission to wait on; work might grow green again, and my heart is sad, that my days fee bud, and send out a flower! But away, and I do no service to the I am but a short-sighted creature, Lord in his house, now when his and my candle casteth not light afar harvest, and the souls of perishing off; he knoweth all that is done to people require it; but his ways are me, how that when I had but one not like my ways, neither can I find joy, and no more, and one green him out. o that he would shine flower, that I esteemed to be my upon my darkness, and bring forth garland, he came in one hour and my morning light from under the dried up my flower at the root, and thick cloud, that men have spread took away mine only eye, and mine over me! O that the Almighty only one crown and garland. What would lay my cause in a balance, can I say? surely my guiltiness hath and weigh me, if my soul was not been remembered before him, and taken up, when others were sleep. he was seeking to take down my ing, how to have Christ betrothed sails, and to land the flower of my with a bride, in that part of the delights, and to let it lye on the land! but that day that my mouth coast like an old broken ship, that was most unjustly and cruelly closed, is no more for the sea; but I praise the bloom fell off my branches, and him for this wailed stroke, I wel. my joy did cast the flower. How come this furpace, God's wisdom beit, I have been casting myself made choice of it for me, and it under God's feet, and wrestling to must be best, because it was hiş believe under a hidden and covered choice. O that I may wait for him Lord, yet my fainting cometh be- till the morning of this benighted fore I eat, and my faith hath bowed kirk break out! This poor afflicted with the fore cast, and under this kirk had a fair morning; but her almost insupportable weight; 0 that night came upon her before her it break not! I dare not say that the noon-day, and she was like a trav. Lord hath put out my candle, and eller, forced to take house in the hath casten water upon my poor coal, morning of his journey: and now and broken the stakes of my taber- her adversaries are the chief men in nacle; but I have tasted bitterness, the land ; her ways mourn, her and eaten gall and wormwood, since gates languish, her children sigh that day my Master laid bonds upon for bread; and there is none to be me to speak no more, I speak not instant with the Lord, that he would this, because the Lord is ancouth to come again to his house, and dry
the face of his weeping spouse, and iform many things, and can find
of the virtues of the life to
gifts of the Holy Spirit, and taste of
states, who sin against the Holy
are but like gold in clink and colour, TO JOHN GORDON at Rusco:
and watered brass and base metal. Dear Brother,
These are written, that we should try I EARNESTLY desire to know the ourselves, and not rest till we be a case of your soul, and to understand step nearer Christ than sun-burnt that ye have made sure work of and withering professors can come. heaven and salvation. 1. Remem- 6. Consider, it is impossible that ber, salvation is one of Christ's dain- your idol-sins and ye can go to ties he giveth but to a few. 2. That heaven together; and that they, who it is violent sweating and striving will not part with these, cannot in. that taketh heaven. 3. That it deed love Christ at the bottom, but cost Christ's blood to purchase that only in word and shew, which will house to sinners, and to set mankind not do the business. 7. Remember down as the King's free-tenants and how swiftly God's post, time, Alieth free-holders. 4. That many make a away; and that your forenoon is al. start towards heaven, who fall on ready spent, your afternoon will their back, and win not up to the come, and then your evening, and top of the mount; it plucketh heart at last night, when ye cannot see and legs from them, and they set to work; let your heart be set upon down and give it over, because the finishing of your journey, and sumdevil setieth a sweet-smelled flower wing and laying your accounts with to their nose this fair busked world your Lord, O how blessed shall
ye wherewith they are bewitched, and be, to have a joyful welcome of your so forget or refuse to go forward. 5. Lord at night! How blessed are they Remember, many go far on, and re. I who in time take sure course with
their souls ! Bless his great name, by course again ? for he hath had ill for what ye possess in goods and weather this long time, and could not children, ease and worldly content- find law or justice for himself and ment, that he hath given you; and his truth these many years. am seek to be like Christ in humility and sure, the wheels of this crazed and lowliness of mind; and be not great broken kirk run all upon no other and entire with the world; make it axle-tree, nor is there any other to not your god, nor your lover, that ye roll them, and cogg them, and drive trust unto, for it will deceive you. I them, but the wisdom and good recommend Christ and his love to pleasure of our Lord: and it were a you, in all things; let him have the just trick, and glorious, of neverflower of your heart and your love; sleeping providence, to bring our set a low price upon all things brethrens darts, they have shot at but Christ, and cry down in your us, back
their own heads ; supthoughts clay and dirt, that will not pose they have two strings to their comfort
when ye get summons bow, and can take one as another fail. to remove, and compear before your eth them, yet there are more than Judge, to answer for all the deeds three strings upon our Lord's bow; done in the body. The Lord give and besides, he cannot miss the white you wisdom in all things : I beseech that he shooteth at. I know, he you sanctify God in your speaking, shuffleth up and down in his hand, for holy and reverend is his name; the great body of heaven and earth, and be temperate and sober; com- and that kirk and commonwealth are panionry, as it is called, is a sin that in his hand, like a stock of cards, holdeth men out of heaven. I will and that he dealeth the play to the not believe, that ye will receive the mourners of Zion, and those that ministry of a stranger, who will say, Lye down that me may go over preach a new and uncouth doctrine you, at his own sovereign pleasure ; to you: let my salvation stand for and I am sure, Zion's adversaries, in it, if I delivered not the plain and this play, shall not take up their own whole counsel of God to you in his stakes again. O how sweet a thing word. Read this letter to your wife, is it to trust in him! When Christ and remember my love to her, and bath sleeped out his sleep, if I may request her to take heed to do what speak so of him, who is the watchI write to you; I pray for you and man of Israel, that neither slumber. your's.
Remember me in your eth nor sleepeth and his own are prayers to our Lord, that he would tried, he will arise as a strong man be pleased to send me amongst after wine, and make bare his holy you again. Grace be with you. arm, and put on vengeance as a
Your lawful and loving Pastor, cloak, and deal vengeance thick and Aberdeen, 1637.
S. R. double amongst the haters of Zion.
It may be, we see him sow, and send
down maledictions and vengeances, LETTER CXXVII. as thick as drops of rain or hail up
on his enemies, for our Lord oweth To Mr. HUGH HENDERSON.
them a black day, and he useth duly Reverend and dear Brother,
pay his debts; neither his friends Who knoweth, but the wind may and followers, nor his foes and adturn into the west again, upon Christ versaries shall have it to say, That and his desolate bride in this land; he is not faithful and exact in keepand that Christ may get his summer ing his word. I know no bar in
God's way, but Scotland's guilti- of the leprous strumpet, the mother
Your's in our Master and Lord,
S. R, the fire, and breathing and blood hot Aberdeen, 1637. in the grave. What are the prisons of iron-walls and gates of brass to Christ? Not so good as feal-dykes, LETTER CXXVIII. fortifications of straw, or old totter. To the Lady LARGIRIE: ing walls; if he give the word, then Mistress, chains will fall off the arms and legs Grace, mercy and peace be to you. of his prisoners God be thanked, I exhort you in the Lord, to go on that our Lord Jesus hath the tutor in your journey to heaven: and to be ing of king and court and nobles, and content of such fare by the way, as that he can dry the gutters and the Christ and his followers have had mires in Zion, and lay causeways to before you; for they had always the the temple with the carcases of bast- wind on their faces; and our Lord ard and idol shepherds; the corn on hath not changed the way to us for the house-topsgot never the husband our ease, but will have us following man's prayers, and so is seen on it, our sweet Guide. Alas, how doth for it filleth not the hand of mowers. sin clog us in our journey, and reChrist, and truth, and innocency tard us! What fools are we, to have worketh even under the earth; and a by-good, or any other love, or verily there is hope for the righteous: match to our souls, beside Christ ! It we see not what conclusions pass in were best for us, like ill children, heaven anent all the affairs of God's who are best at home, to seek our house ; we need not give hire to God own home, and to sell our hopes of to take
vengeance of his enemies, for this little clay inns and idol of the justice worketh without hire. O earth, where we are neither well that the seed of hope would grow summered nor well wintered. Oh again, and come to maturity! and that our souls would so fall at odds that we could importune Christ, and with the love of this world, as to double our knocks at his gate, and think of it as a traveller doth of a cast our cries and shouts over the drink of water, which is not any part wall, that he might come out, and of his treasure, but goeth away with make our Jerusalem the praise of the the using; for ten miles journey whole earth, and give us salvation maketh that drink to him as nothing. for walls and bulwarks! If Christ that we had as soon done with bud, and grow green, and bloom, this world, and could as quickly disand bear seed again in Scotland, and patch the love of it ! But as a child his Father send him two summers in cannot hold two apples in his little one year, and bless his crop; O what hand, but the one putteth the other cause have we to rejoice in the free out of its room; so neither can we salvation of our Lord, and to set up be masters and lords of two loves; our banners in the name of our God blessed were we, if we could make O that he would hasten the confusion ourselves masters of that invaluable
treasure, the love of Christ ; or rath- fer for a time here amongst our eneer, suffer ourselves to be mastered mies; otherwise he might have made and subdued to Christ's love, so as heaven to wait on us, at our coming Christ were our all things, and all out of the womb, and have carried other things our nothings, and the us home to our country, without letrefuse of our delights. O let us be ting us set down our feet in this ready for shipping against the time knotty and thorny life; but seeing a of our Lord's wind and tide call for piece of suffering is carved to every us! Death is the last thief, that shall one of us, less or more, as infinite come without the least din or noise wisdom hath thought good, our part is of feet and take our souls away, and to harden and habituate our soft and we shall take our leave at time, and thin-skinned nature, to endure fire face eternity; and our Lord shall and water, devils, lions, men, losses, lay together the two sides of this wo hearts, as these that are looked earthly tabernacle, and fold us, and upon by God, angels, men, and delay us by, as a man layeth by clothes vils. O what folly is it, to sit down at night, and put the one half of us and weep for a decree of God, that in a house of clay, the dark grave, is both deaf and dumb at our tears, and the other half of us in heaven or and must stand still as unmoveable hell. Seek to be found of your as God who made it! for who can Lord in peace, and gather in your come behind our Lord, to alter and flitting, and put your soul in order, better what he hath decreed and for Christ will not give a nail breadth done? It were better to make winof time to our little sand glass.dows in our prison, and to look out Pray for Zion, and for me his pri to God and our country heaver, and soner, that he would be pleased to to cry like fettered men, who long bring me amongst you again, full for the King's free air, Lord, let of Christ, and freighted and loaden thy kingdom come! O let the Bridewith the blessing of hisgospel. Grace, groom come! And, O day, O fair grace be with you.
day, 0 everlasting summer day, Your's in his only Lord and Master,
dawn and shine out, break out from
under the black sky, and shine! I Aberdeen, 1637.
am persuaded, if every day a stone in the prison walls were broken, and
thereby assurance given to the chain. LETTER CXXIX. ed prisoner, lying under twenty stone TO EARLS TOUN, Younger.
of irons upon arnis and legs, that at
length his chain should wear in two Worthy and dearly beloved in our Lord, pieces, and a hole should be made Grace, mercy and peace be to you. at length, as wide as he might come I long to hear from you: I remain safely out to his long-desired liberty; still a prisoner of hope, and do think he would in patience wait on, till it service to the Lord, to wait on time should hole the prison wall and still with submission, till the Lord's break his chains. The Lord's hopemorning-sky break, and his summer ful prisoners, under their trials, are day dawn; for I am persuaded, it is in that case; years and months will a piece of the chief errand of our take out now one little stone, then, life, that God sent us, for some years, another, of this house of clay, and down to this earth, among devils and at length time shall win out the men, the fire-brands of the of readth of a fair door, and send out and temptations, that we pri
he imprisoned soul to the free air in