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CHRISTIAN FAITH AND DOCTRINE,
SOCIETY OF FRIENDS,
BY GEORGE FOX.
GEORGE FOX TO FRIENDS IN ENGLAND,
Written at Dalston, in 1682.
KEPRINTED BY JOSEPH R. A. SKERRETT.
NOTE.-At the present period, when the religious principles of the Society of Friends are grossly misrepresented, even by some who profess. to be their ad- . mirers--when the early Quakers are characterised, in the face of the world, as deniers of our Lord Jesus Christ, and his divinity--of his mediation, atonement, and intercession for us, in heaven; the revival of the following clear and concise declaration of the Christian belief of the Society is highly proper. It was written by George Fox and others, in the year 1671, when their opponents were endeavouring 6 to defame Friends with many false and scandalous reports." He thus speaks of it in his journal, viz. - Whereupon I, with some other Friends, drew up a paper to go forth in the name of the people called Quakers, for the clearing of truth and friends from those false reports.” The faith of the Society has not changed from that time to the present; all those who have been, or are consistent and worthy members, have ever maintained a sincere belief in the glorious and saving doctrines which are so clearly set forth in the subjoined declaration.
A DECLARATION, &c.
66 WHEREAS many scandalous lies and slanders have been cast upon us, to render us odious; as that • We deny God, Christ Jesus, and the scriptures of truth,' &c. This is to inform you, That all our books and declarations, which for these many years have been published to the world, clearly testify the contrary. Yet for your satisfaction, we now plain. . ly and sincerely declare
“ That we own, and believe in, the only Wise, Omnipotent, and Everlasting God, the Creator of all things in heaven and earth, and the Preserver of all that he hath made; who is God over all, blessed for ever; to whom be all honour, glory, dominion, praise, and thanksgiving, both now and for ever
6. And we own and believe in Jesus Christ, his beloved and only begotten Son, in whom he is well pleased; who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, and born of the Virgin Mary; in whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins; who is the express image of the Invisible God, the first born of every creature, by whom were all things created that are in heaven and in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, dominions, principalities, or powers; all things were created by him.
“And we own and believe that He was made a sacrifice for sin, who knew no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth; that he was crucified for us in the flesh, without the gates of Jerusalem; and that he was buried, and rose again the third day by the power of his Father, for our justification, and that he ascended up into heaven, and now sitteth at the right hand of God. This Jesus, who was the foundation of the holy prophets and apostles, is our foundation; and we believe there is no other foundation to be laid but that which is laid, even Christ Jesus: who tasted death for every man, shed his blood for all men, is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world: according as John the Baptist testified of him, when he said, 'Behold the Lamb of God, that taketh away the sins of the world.' John i. 29.
“We believe that he alone is our Redeemer and Saviour, the Captain of our salvation, who saves us from sin, as well as from hell and the wrath to come, and destroys the devil and his works; he is the Seed of the woman that bruises the serpent's head, to wit, Christ Jesus, the Alpha and Omega, the First and the Last. He is, as the scriptures of truth say of him, our wisdom, righteousness, justification, and redemption; neither is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men, whereby we may be saved. He alone is the Shepherd and Bishop of our souls: he is our Prophet, whom Moses long since testified of, saying, “A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear in all things, whatsoever he shall say unto you: and it shall come to pass, that every soul that will not hear that prophet shall be destroyed from among the people.' Acts ii. 22, 23.
"He is now come in Spirit, and hath given us an understanding, that we know him that is true.' He rules in our hearts by his law of love and life and makes us free from the law of sin and death. We have no life, but by him; for he is the quickening Spirit, the second Adam, the Lord from heaven, by whose blood we are cleansed, and our consciences sprinkled from dead works, to serve the living God. He is our Mediator, who makes peace and reconciliation between God offended and us offending; he being the Oath of God, the new Covenant of light, life, grace, and peace, the Author and Finisher of our faith.
This Lord Jesus Christ, the heavenly Man, the Emanuel, God with us, we all own and believe in; he whom the high-priest raged against, and said, he had spoken blasphemy; whom the priests and elders of the Jews took counsel together against and put to death; the same whom Judas betrayed for thirty pieces of silver, which the priests gave him as a reward for his treason; who also gave large money to the soldiers to broach a horrible lie, namely, “That his disciples came and stole him away by night whilst they slept.' After he was risen from the dead,