command Christ's love; nay,


LETTER CLV. (as I now think) and all the pains in it laid on me alone, would not Dear Brother, put me from loving : yea, suppose Grace, mercy and peace be to you. my Lord Jesus would not love me, I beseech you in the Lord Jesus, it is above my strength or power to make fast and sure work of life ekeep back or imprison the weak ternal : sow not rotten seed; every love I have, but it must be out to man's work will speak for itself; Christ: I would set heaven's joy what his seed hath been. O how aside, and live upon Christ's love its alone; let me have no joy, but the many see. I, who sow to the flesh!

Alas, what a crop will that be, when the warmness and fire of Christ's the Lord shall put in his hook to love, I seek no other, God knoweth ;

reap this world, that is ripe and if this love be taken from me, the white for judgment? I recoinmend bottom is fallen out of all my happi- to you holiness and sanctification, ness and joy; and therefore I bed and that you keep yourself clean lieve Christ will never do me that from this present evil world. We much harm, as to bereave a poor delight to tell our own dreanis, and prisoner of his love; it were cruelty to datter our own flesh with the to take it from me; aná he who is

hope we have: it were wisdom for kindness itself, cannot be cruel.

us to be free, plain, honest and Dear brother, weary not of my sharp with our own souls, and to sweet Master's chains; we are so charge them to brew better, that much the sibber to Christ that we they may drink well, and fare well, suffer : lodge not a hard thought of when time is melted away

like snow my royal King ; rejoice in his cross in a hot summer. O how hard Your deliverance sleepeth not, He thing is it, to get the soul to give that will come is not slack of his

up with all things on this side of promise: wait on for God's time. death and doomsday! We say, we ous salvation; ask not when, or

are removing and going from this how long ? I hope he shall lose no- world; but our heart stirreth not thing of you in the furnace, but

one foot off its seat.

Alas! I see dross : commit your cause in meek- few heavenly minded souls, that ness (forgiving your oppressors) to have nothing upon the earth, but God, and your sentence shall come their body of clay going, up and back from hias laugbing. Our down this earth, because their soul Bridegroom's day is coming fast and the powers of it are up in heaon; and this world that seemeth to

ven, and there their hearts live, de. go with a long and a short foot, sire, enjoy, rejoice. Oh! men's shall be put in two ranks: wait till souls have no wings, and therefore your ten days be ended, and hope night and day they keep their nest, for the crown ; Christ will not give and are not acquaint with Christ. you a blind in the end. . Cominend Sir, take you to your one thing, 10 me to your wife and father, and to Christ, that ye may be acquainted Bailie M. A. and send this letter to with the taste of his sweetness and him. The prayers of Christ's pri- excellency, and charge your love soner be upon you, and the Lord's

not to dote upon this world; for it presence accompany you.

will not do your business in that Your's in his sweet Lord Jesus. day, when nothing will come in good

stead to you, but God's favour: Aberdeen, July 6th, 1637. S. R

build upon Christ some good, choice


and fast work; for when your soul session! I know, we shall meet;
for many years hath taken the play, and therein I rejoice. Sir, stand
and hath posted, and wandered fast in the truth of Christ, that ye
through the creatures, ye will come have received : yield to no winds
home again with the wind : they are but ride out, and let Christ be your
not good, at least not the soul's Anchor, and the only He, whom
good; it is the infinite God-head ye shall look to see in peace. Pray
that must allay the sharpness of your for me his prisoner that the Lord
hunger after happiness; otherwise would send me among you to feed
there shall still be a want of satis- his people. Grace, grace be with
faction to your desires : and if he you,
should cast in ten worlds in

Your's in his sweet Lord Jesus.

S. R,
desires, all shall fall through, and Aberdeen, 1637.
your soul shall still cry, red hun.
ger, black hunger : but I am sure
there is sufficient for you in Christ,

if ye had seven souls and seven TO JOHN FLEMING, Baily of Leith.
desires in you. Oh if I could make Worthy Sir,

Lord Jesus market-sweet, love- GRACE, mercy and peace be to you. ly, desirable, and fair to all the The Lord hath brought me safe to world, both to Jew and Gentile! this strange town; blessed be his O let my part of heaven go for it, holy name, I find his easy

and so being he would take my tongue light, and I hope he will be with to be his instrument, to set out his poor sold Joseph, who is sepaChrist in his whole braveries of love, rated from his brethren: his comvirtue, grace, sweetness and match forts have abo

towards me, as less glory, to the eyes and hearts of if Christ thought shame (if I may Jews and Gentiles! but who is suffi- speak so) to be in the common of cient for these things! O for the such a poor man as


am, and would help of angel's tongues, to make not have me lose any thing in his Christ eye-sweet and amiable to errands. My enemies have, beside many thousands ! O how little doth their intention, made mne more blesthis world see of him, and how far sed, and have put me in a sweeter are they from the love of him, see- possession of Christ than ever I had ing there is so much loveliness, beau- before : only the memory of the ty, and sweetness in Christ, that no fair days I had with my

Well-becreated eye did ever yet see! I loved, amongst the flock intrusted would that all men knew his glory, to me, keepeth me low, and sourand that I could put many in at the eth my unseen joy; but must be Bridegroom's chamber-door ; to see so, and he is wise who tutoreth me his beauty, and to be partakers of in this way: for that which my his high, and deep, and broad, and brethren have, and I want, and boundless love. O let all the world others of this world have, I am concome nigh and see Christ, and they tent, my faith will frist God my shall then see more than I can say happiness: no son offendeth, that of him! O if I had a pledge or his father gave him not hire twice pawn to lay down for a sea-ful of a-year; for he is to abide in the his love! that I could come by so house, when the inheritance is to be much of Christ, as would satisfy divided : it is better God's children all my longing for him, or rather live upon hope, than upon hire. increase it, till I were in full pos- | Thus, remembering my love to your



worthy and kind wife ; 1 bless you prison is the garden and orchard of and her, and all yours, in the Lord's my delights: I would go through

burning quick to my lovely Christ; Your's in his only, only Lord Jesus. I sleep in his arms all the night, and Aberdeen, Sept. 20, 1637. S. R. my head betwixt his breasts : my

Well-beloved is altogether lovely ;

this is all nothing, to that which my LETTER CLVII. soul hath felt. Let no man, for


cause, scar at Christ's cross: if my Baillie of Kircudbright.

stipend, place, country, credit, had Worthy Sir,

been an earldom, a kingdom, ten Grace, mercy and peace be to you. kingdoms, and a whole earth; all I am well, honour be to God! and were too little for the crown and as well as a rejoicing prisoner of sceptre of my royal King. Mine Christ can be, hoping that one day enemies, mine enemies have made he, for whom I now suffer, shall me blessed: they have sent me to enlarge me, and put me above the the Bridegroom's chamber; love is threatenings of men. I ain some- his banner over me: I live a king's times sad, heavy and casten down, life: I want nothing but heaven, at the m=mory of the fair days I and possession of the crown: my had with Christ, in Anwoth, Kir-earnest is great, Christ is no niggard cudbright, &c. The remembrance to me. Dear brother, be for the of a feast increaseth hunger in a Lord Jesus, and his heart-broken hungry man; but who knoweth, bride. I need not (I hope) remembut our Lord will yet cover a table ber my distressed brother to your in the wilderness to his hungry caré. Remember my love to your children, and build the old waste wife, let Christ want nothing of us : places in Scotland, and bring home bis garments shall be rolled in the Zion's captives? I desire to see no blood of the slain of Scotland. more glorious fight, till I see the Grace, grace be with you. Pray Lamb on his throne, than to see for Christ's prisoner. mount Zion all green with grass, Your's in his sweet Lord Jesus. and the dew lying upon the tops of Aberdeen, Sept. 21, 1637.

S. R. the grass, and the crown put upon Christ's head in Scotland again :

coccoce 2002 and I believe it shall be so, and that Christ shall mow down his enemies,

LETTER CLVIII. and fill the pits with their dead bo

To ROBERT GORDON of Knockbrex, dies. I find people here dry and

Dear Brother, uncouth: a man pointed at for suf- Grace, mercy and peace be to you. fering dare not be countenanced; I am by God's mercy come now to 80 that I am like to sit mine alone Aberdeen, tle place of my confineupon the ground : but my Lord pay- ment, and settled in an honest man's eth me well home again; for 1 house: I find the town's nen cold, have neither tongue, nor pen, nor general, and dry in their kindness; heart to express the sweetness and yet I find a lodging in the heart of excellency of the love of Christ. many strangers. My challenges are Christ's honeycombs drop honey and revived again, and I find old sores floods of consolation upon my soul; are bleeding of new; so dangerous my chains are gold: Christ's cross and painful is an undercotted conis all overgilded and perfumed; his science; yet I have an eye to the


blood that is physic for such sores : LETTER CLIX. but verily, I see Christianity is con To EARLSTOU N Younger. ceived to be more easy and lighter Much honoured Sir, than it is; so that I sometimes think, Grace, mercy and peace be to you, I never knew any thing but the let. I am well, Christ triumpheth in me, ters of that name; for our nature blessed be his name; I have all. contenteth itself with little in god. things, I burden no man: I see, liness. Our Lord, Lord, seemeth this earth and the fulness thereof to us, ten Lord Lords; little holiness is my Father's: sweet, sweet is the in our balance is much, because it


my Lord. The blessing of is our holiness; and we love to lay God upon the cross of my Lord small burdens upon our soft natures, Jesus. My enemies have contri. and to make a fair court-way to hea- buted (beside their design) to make ven; and I know it were necessary me blessed. This is my palace, not to take more pains than we do, and

my prison; especially, when my not to make heaven a city more Lord shineth and smileth upon his easily taken than God hath made it: poor afficted and sold Joseph, who I persuade myself, many runners is separated from his brethren; but shall come short and get a disap- often he bideth himself, and there pointment. Oh! how easy is it to is a day of law, and a court of chal. deceive ourselves, and to sleep and lenges within me; I know not, if wish that heaven may fall down in fenced in God's name, but oh my our laps! Yet, for all my Lord's neglects! Oh my unseen guiltiness! glooms, I find him sweet, gracious, I imagined, that a sufferer for Christ loving, kind ; and I want both pen kept the keys of Christ's treasure, and words to set forth the fairness, and might take out his heart-ful of beauty and sweetness of Christ's comforts, when he pleased; but I love, and the honour of this cross of

see, a sufferer and a witness will be Christ, which is glorious to me, holden at the door, as well as anoththough the world thinketh shame

sinner, and glad to eat with thereof; ( verily think, that the the children, and to take the bycross of Christ would blush and board. This cross hath let me see, think shame of these thin-skinned that heaven is not at the next door, worldlings, who are so married to and that it is a castle not soon tak, their credit, that they are ashamed

en: I see also, it is neither pain nor of the sufferings of Christ

. O the art to play the hypocrite. We have honour to be scourged, stoned with all learned to sell ourselves for Christ, and to go through a furious double price, and to make the peofaced death to life eternal! but men

ple, who call ten twenty, and twenty would have law. borrows against

an hundred, esteem us half gods, or Christ's cross. Now, my dear broth.

men fallen out of the clouds; but er, forget not the prisoner of Christ; oh sincerity, sincerity, if I knew for I see very few here, who kindly what sincerity meaneth. Sir, lay they fear God. Grace be with


foundation thus, and ye shall not my love in Christ and hearty affec

soon shrink, nor be shaken; make tion be remembered to your kind tight work at the bottom, and your wife, and to your brother John, and ship shall ride against all storms, if to all friends. The Lord Jesus be



anchor be fastened upon with your spirit.

good ground, I mean within the vail ; Your's in his only, only Lord Jesus,

and verily I think this is all, to gain Aberdeen, Sept. 20, 1636, S. R.

er poor

Christ; all other things are shadows, water, and, hold his hand in the dreams, fancies, and nothing. Sir, river, say, all the water of the flood remember my love to your mother; is his, as if it were indeed all within 1 pray for

mercy and grace to her; the compass of his hand: who would I wish her on-going toward heaven; not laugh at thoughts of such a as I promised to write, so shew her crack-brain? Verily they have but I want nothing in my Lord's service: an handful of water, and are but Christ will not be in such a poor like a child clasping his two hands man's common as mine, Grace, about a night-shadow, who idolize grace be with you.

any created hope, but God, I now Your's in his sweet Lord Jesus,

rightly, and put the price of a dream, Aberdeen, Sept. 22, 1637.

S. R.

or fable, or black nothing, upon all things, but God, and that desirable and love worthy One, my Lord

Jesus : let all the world be nothing, LETTER CLX.

for nothing was their seed and To JOHN GORDON.

mother, and let God be all things. Worthy and dear Brother,

My very dear brother, know ye are GRACE, mercy and peace be to you as near heaven, as ye are far from I have been too long in writing to yourself, and far from the love of a you, but multitude of letters taketh bewitching and whorish world; for much time from me. I bless his this world, in its gain and glory, is great name, whom I serve in the but the great and notable common spirit, if it came to voting amongst whore, that all the sons of men have angels and men, how excellent and been in fancy and lust withal these sweet Christ is, even in his reproach- 5000 years: the children, that they es and in his cross, I cannot but vote have begotten with this uncouth with the first, that all that is in him, and lustful lover, are but vanity, both cross and crown, kisses and dreams, gold-imaginations and night glooms, embracements and frown thoughts; for there is no good ings and strokes are sweet and glor- ground here under the covering of ious. God send me no more hapin heaven, for men, and poor wearied ness in heaven, or out of heaven, souls, to set down their foot upon. but Christ: for I find this world, O! he who is called God, that One when I have looked upon it on both whom they term Jesus Christ, is sides, within and without, and when worth the having indeed; even if I I have seen even the laughing and had give away all without my eyelovely side of it, to be but a fool's holes, my soul, and myself for sweet idol, a clay prison; Lord, let it not Jesus my Lord! O let the claim be be the nest that my hope buildeth cancelled, that the creatures have in. I have now cause to judge my to me, except that claim my Lord part of this earth not worth a blast Jesus hath to me! O that he would of smoke, or a mouthful of brown claim poor me, my silly, light and bread. I wish my hope may take worthless soul! Ó that he would a running leap, and skip over time's pursue his claim to the utmost pleasure, sin's plaistering and gold-point, and not want me! for it is foil, this yain earth, and rest upon my pain, and remediless sorrow to

O how great is our night want him. I see nothing in this life, darkness in this wilderness!' to have but sinks, and mires, and dreams, any conceit at all of this world, is and beguiling ditches, and ill ground as a man would close bis handful of for us to build upon. I am fully

my Lord,


« VorigeDoorgaan »