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that the witness may arise to condemn its actings, so far as it hath spread its dark works before it have any admittance. So no more, but my love in the seed of God, which chang, eth not.'
G. F. Minehead in Somersetshire, the 22nd of the 4th mooth, 1668.
The next day several friends of Minehead accompanied us as far as Barnstaple and Appledon in Devonshire, where we had a meeting. "Barnstaple had been a bloody, persecuting town : for there were two men friends of that town, that had been a great while at sea ; and coming home to visit their relations (one of them having a wife and chil. dren) the mayor of the town sent for them, under pretence to discourse with them, and put the oaths of allegiance and supremacy to them. And because they could not swear, he sent them to Exeter jail, where judge Archer premunired them, and kept them till one of them died in prison. When I heard of this, I was moved to write a letter to judge Archer, and another to that mayor of Barnstaple, laying their wicked and unchristian actions upon their heads, and letting them know that the blood of that man would be required at their hands.
Now after we had had a precious meeting at Appledon among some faithful friends there, we passed to Stratton, and staid there at an inn all night. Next day we rid through the country to Humphrey Lower's, where we had a very precious meeting; and the next day we, passed through to Truro, and so went on visiting friends till we came to the Land's-end. Then coming up by the south part of that county, we visited friends till we came to Tregangeeves, where at Loveday Hambley's we had a general meeting for all the county, in which the monthly meetings were settled in the Lord's power, and in the blessed order of the gospel; that all who were faithful might admonish and exhort such as walked not according to the gospel, that so the house of God might be kept clean, and righteousness might run down, and all un. righteousness be swept away. And several that had run out, were brought to condemn what they had done amiss, and through repentance came in again.
So after we had visited the meetings in Cornwall, and were clear of that county, we came into Devonshire, and had a meeting amongst friends at Plymouth. Whence passing to Richard Brown's, we came to the widow Philips, where we had some of men-friends from all the
meetings together; and there the men's monthly-meetings were settled in the heavenly order of the
gospel, the power of God, which answered the witness of God in all. There was a great noise of a troop of horse coming to disturb our meeting (for the man-servant of the house was a wicked envious man;) but the Lord's power prevented it, and preserved us in peace and safety.
After things were well settled and the meeting done, we came to King's-bridge, and visited friends there-aways. Then (leaving friends in those parts well settled in ihe power of God) we passed from thence through the coun. try to Topsham, and so to Membury, visiting friends, and having many meetings in the way, till we came to Ilchester in Somersetshire. Here we had a general men's meeting, and therein settled the men's monthly-meetings for that county in the Lord's everlasting power, the order of the gospel, the power of God, which was before the devil was. Then after the meetings were settled, and friends refreshed and comforted in the Lord's power, and established upon Christ their rock and foundation, we passed to Puddimore, where at William Beaton's we had a blessed meeting, and all was quiet; though the constables had threatened before.
When we had visited most of the meetings in Somersetshire, we passed into Dorsetshire to one George Harris his house, where we had a large men's meeting; and there all the men's monthly.meetings for that county were settled in the glorious order of the gospel, that all in the power of God might seek that which was lost, and bring again that which was driven away; and night cherish the good, and reprove the evil.
Then having visited the meetings of friends through the countries, we came to Southampton, where we had a large meeting on the first-day of the week. And from thence we went to one captain Reeves, where the general men's meeting for Hampshire was appointed, to which some of all the county came, and a blessed meeting we had. There the men's monthly-meetings for that county were settled in the order of the gospel, which had brought life and immortality to light in them.
But there came a rude company who were run into ranterism, and had opposed and disturbed our meetings much. One of them had lain with a man, and the man that had lain with her declared it at the market-cross, and gloried in his wickedness; these lewd people lived a company of them together, at a house hard by the place where our meeting was. Wherefore I went to the house and told
them of their wickedness; but the man of the house said, Why did I make so strange of that? Another of them said, It was to stumble me. I told them, their wickedness should not stumble me, for I was above it. And I was moved of the Lord God to tell them, that the plagues and judgments of God would overtake them and come upon them. Afterward they went up and down the country, till at last they were cast into Winchester-jail, where the man that had lain with the woman aforesaid, stabbed the jailer, but not mortally. And after they were let out of jail, this fellow that had stabbed the jailer, hanged himself; the woman also had like to have cut a child's throat, (as we were informed.) These people had formerly lived about London; and when the city was fired, they prophesied that all the rest of London should be burnt within fourteen days, and hastened away out of town. Now though they were ranters, and were great opposers of friends and disturbers of our meetings, yet in the country where they came, some of the people of the world that did not know them, would be apt to say they were Quakers. Wherefore I was moved of the Lord to write a paper, to be dispersed amongst the magistrates and people of Hampshire, to clear friends and truth of these lewd people and their wicked actions.
Now after the men's monthly-meetings in those parts were settled, and we had visited friends, and the Lord's blessed power was over all, we went to a town where we had a meeting with friends. And from thence we came to Farnham, where we met many friends, it being the marketday; and we had many precious meetings up and down that country. Friends in those countries had formerly been plundered, and their goods much spoiled, both for tithes and for going to meetings; but the Lord's power at this time preserved both them and us from falling into the persecutor's hands.
We passed from thence and had a general men's meeting at a friend's house in Surrey, who had been plundered so extremely, that he had scarce a cow, horse, or swine, left. The constables threatened to come then and break up our meeting, but the Lord restrained them. At this meeting the men's monthly-meetings were settled in the authority of the heavenly power. And after we had visited friends in that country and had many large and precious meetings among them, we passed to a friend's house in Sussex, where the general ineeting for the men friends of that county was appointed to be held, and thither came several friends from London to visit us. There we had a blessed
meeting; and the men's monthly-meetings for that county were then settled in the Lord's eternal power, the gospel of salvation, that all in it might keep to the order of the gospel. There were at that time great threatenings of disturbance, but the meeting was quiet. And afterward we passed from thence and had several large meetings in that county, though friends were then in great sufferings there, and inany in prison. I was sent for to visit a friend that was sick, and went to see friends that were prisoners, and there was danger of my being apprehended; but I went in the faith of God's power, and ihereby the Lord preserved me in safety.
Having visited friends through the country, we passed on into Kent, where after we had been at several ineetings we had a general meeting for the men-friends of that county; there also the men's monthly-meetings for that county were settled in the power of God, and established in the order of the gospel, for all the heirs of it to enter into their services, and care in the church for the glory of God. And friends rejoiced in the order of the gospel, and were glad of the settlement thereof, which is not of man nor by man.
After this meeting was over, I visited friends in their meetings up and down in Kent; and when I had cleared myself of the Lord's service in that county, I came up to London. Thus were the men's monthly-meetings settled through the nation; for I had been in Berkshire before, where most of the ancient friends of that county were in prison, and when I had informed them of the service of ihese monthly-meetings, they were settled amongst them also. And the quarterly meetings were generally settled before. I writ also into Ireland by faithful friends, and into Scotland, Holland, Barbadoes, and other parts of America, advising friends to settle their men's monthly. meetings in those countries also. For they had their general quarterly meetings before; but now that truth was increased amongst them, they should settle those men's monthly-meetings in the power and spirit of God, that did at first convince them. And since the time these meetings have been settled, that all the faithful in the power of God, who be heirs of the gospel, have met toge. ther in the power of God, which is the authority of them to perform service to the Lord therein, many mouths have been opened in thanksgivings and praise, and many have blessed the Lord God that ever he did send me forth in this service; yes, with tears have many praised the Lord.
For now all coming to have a concern and care for God's honour and glory, that his name be not blasphemed, which they do profess, and to see that all who profess the truth do walk in the truth, in righteousness, and in holiness, which becomes the house of God, and that all order their conversations aright, that they may see the salvation of God; all having this care upon them for God's glory, and being exercised in his holy Power and Spirit, in the order of the heavenly life and gospel of Jesus, here they may all see and know, possess and partake of, the government of Christ, of the increase of which there is to be no end. Thus the Lord's everlasting renown and praise is set up in every one's heart that is faithful, so that we can now say that the gospel order established amongst us, is not of man nor by man, but of and by Jesus Christ, in and through the Holy Ghost. And this order of the gospel, which is not of man, nor by man, but from Christ, the heavenly man, is above all the orders of men in the fall, whether Jews, Gentiles, or a postatized Christians, and will be when they are gone. For the power of God, which is the everlasting gospel, was before the devil was, and will be and remain for ever. And as the everlasting gospel was preached in the apostles' days to all nations, that all nations might come into the order of it through the divine power, which brings life and immortality to light, that ihey who were heirs of it, might inherit the power and authority of it; so now, since all nations have drunk the whore's cup, and all the world hath worshipped the beast, (but they whose names are written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, who have worshipped God in spirit and truth, as Christ commanded) the everlasting gospel is to be, and is, preached again (as John the divine foresaw it should) to all nations, kindreds, tongues, and people. And this everlasting gospel torments the whore, and makes her and the beast to rage, even the beast that hath power over the tongues, which are called the original, to order them, by which they make divines as they call them. But all that receive the gospel, the power of God, which brings life and immortality to light, they come to see over the beast, devil, whore, and false prophet, that hath darkened them and all their worships and orders, and come to be heirs of the gospel, the power of God, which was before the beast, whore, false prophet, and devil were, and will be when they are all gone and cast into the lake of fire. And they that be heirs of this power and of this gospel, they inherit the power which is the authority of this order, and of our meetings. Every man and woman