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To the KING and both Houſes of Parliament, (Who have made Laws and Decrees, and cauſed them to be put in Execution, to reſtrain and prohibit People from having the Liberty of their Conſciences in the Exerciſe of the Wor­ſhip of GOD) This is ſent as A WARNING from the LORD.


WHat do you mean by theſe Practices? or what do you expect to bring to paſs by theſe your Undertakings and Proceedings? Do you think thereby to root out the Holy Seed and Royal Off-ſpring of God, which he hath raiſed and brought forth in theſe North parts of the World, to rule and reign (according to his Promiſe made by the Mouths of his Prophets in Ages paſt) to which Nations muſt bow and bend, and become ſubject; I tell you plainly and truly, that if this be your Expectation (which your proceedings give me cauſe to be­lieve it is) you will certainly fail therein; And God will aſſuredly fruſtrate theſe your Expectations, and by this very way and means that you take to ſuppreſs and root out the People of God from having a being amongſt you, even thereby you will pro­voke the Lord to root you out, if you perſiſt therein: Wherefore beware, leſt that which you think (and expect) to bring upon the People of God, be by the Hand of God brought upon your ſelves. For (be it known unto you) the Lord God Almightys with his People of a truth, whom you have turned your Sword and Power againſt;nd what is done unto them, he certainly takes as done unto himſelf; and in as muchs you go about to ſuppreſs his People, or to limit them in the exerciſe of their Conſciences towards God, you therein are found fighters againſt God, and thereby you go about to ſtop and hinder the work of God; which will be as hard for you to do, as it was for Saul to kick againſt the pricks of the Witneſs of God in his own Con­ſcience: Wherefore conſider theſe things, and remember that many Warnings and tender Viſitations of Love the Lord hath ſent unto you in times paſt (which you have little regarded hitherto, but go on exerciſing Cruelty towards the People of God) And now at this time alſo I am moved (and it is upon my heart) by the Spirit of the Lord, to lay theſe things before you, and do tell you in plainneſs what the Lord will do and bring to paſs in deſpite of all that you can do who ſeek to oppoſe him: For, notwithſtanding the many Laws and Decrees which you have made or ſhall make, yet the Work of the Lord which he hath certainly begun, that ſhall go on and increaſe, and the Truth muſt flouriſh and proſper, and ſpread forth its ſelf, and the Kingdoms of the World muſt become the Kingdoms of our Lord and of his Chriſt, according to his Promiſe; and they that will not bow unto his Throne and Government, who is KING of Kings, (whoſe right it is to rule in the Conſciences of people, and to bear the Government there, and to exerciſe them in matters of Worſhip towards God) but will ſeek to ſtop and limit him and his Government there, even ſuch muſt and ſhall be broken by him, and bruiſed under by his eternal Power; the Lord hath ſaid and ſpoken it, and it muſt come to paſs.

Wherefore Friends, be you once more warned that you meddle no more with the Conſciences of People, ſo as to go about to limit them in matters relating to the Service of God (for it's not the place of a Civil Magiſtrate to meddle or have to do with thoſe things) but leave them free in thoſe things to do as they are perſwaded in their own Conſciences by the Light of the Spirit of the Lord; for you cannot give an account unto God for them if they do amiſs, but they muſt all (and ſo muſt you alſo) give an account unto God, every one for himſelf: And this is juſt and equalhat (in things of this nature) every one ſhould be left to the exerciſe of the Spirit ofhe Lord in his own heart; becauſe that Spiritual Worſhip conſiſteth in obedienceo the Spirit of God, and you your ſelves would not be willing to be prohibited from,r denied of this Liberty; but (I dare ſay) you would look upon it to be a very great Oppreſſion unto you, to be reſtrained (by any Civil Power or Goverment) from that, which by the Spirit and Power of God you were perſwaded in your Conſciences you ought to do; and you could not but judge that thoſe (who ſhould go about to lay or impoſe ſuch a Reſtriction upon you) did do unto you as they themſelves would not be done by; and ſo ye might wel conclude that it were unrighteouſneſs in them ſo to do: wherefore if you ſeriouſly conſider whether this Unrighteouſneſs and Oppreſſion be not found in you, I know you cannot but lay your hands upon your mouths and confeſs, Guilty.

So let my Counſel be (at this time) received by you, and take my Advice (as•…om one that hath received the Counſel of the Lord, and (in meaſure) knows the mind of the Lord by the revelation of his Spirit as touching this matter) that is this: Shake your ſelves out of theſe cruel practices of perſecuting about Religion and Worſhip, and lay aſide theſe cruel Impoſitions, which are and have been laid upon the People of God, by reaſon whereof many (who are dear unto the Lord) have ſuf­fered very greatly; ſome the loſs of their Liberties, and ſome the loſs of their Lives, occaſioned through being thruſt together in noiſom Holes and Priſons, and others are obnoxious to Exilement from their Wives and Children, and from their Native Country & deareſt Relations, and no evil at all juſtly charged againſt any of theſe, for which theſe cruel Sufferings are inflicted upon them; 'tis only for worſhipping God in Spirit that theſe Sufferings are ſuſtained by them, that is the greateſt Charge that hath been by you at all proved againſt them; and for theſe things ſake the Lord's Con­troverſie is certainly great with you, and will you continue in theſe things through which you have provoked the Lord to anger? His Wrath will not be appeaſed to­wards you, neither can your Government be eſtabliſhed in ſafety, nor you cannot eſtabliſh your ſelves in ſafety and ſecurity, for fear will ſurprize you (while you go on in theſe practices) becauſe of the guilt that is upon your Conſciences; and al­though we cannot, neither do we deſire to make outward oppoſition againſt you by Plottings and Inſurrections, &c. (Out of which things God Almighty hath redeemed us, and hath brought us into his Covenant of Peace, and unto his Mountain of Holineſs, where nothing hurts nor deſtroyes) yet we know that the Lord is with us, & on our ſide, and takes our part, will plead our Cauſe and fight for us, and he is ſtronger than you all; and his Power is above yours, and our truſt and confidence is in him alone, and not in the arm of fleſh: and its in vain for you to ſtrive againſt him, or to oppoſe or reſiſt him; for he will in the end be too hard for you, and will break you to pieces as a Potters veſſel of clay, except you repent.

And now Friends, there is but one only way by which you may or can poſſibly eſcape and prevent the dreadful Judgments of the Lord, or by which his Anger may be appeaſed which is kindled againſt you, and that is this; To humble your ſelves before the Lord, and to repent of the Evil of your Doings, and to looſe the Bands of Ini­quity, and to undo the heavy Burdens, and let the Oppreſſed go free, and turn the Sword againſt the Evil-doers, and ſuppreſs Vice and Profaneneſs, and do not tolerate Licentiouſneſs and thoſe wicked Practices (as Rioting, Drunkenneſs, Stage-playes, and the like) which day by day even greatly abounds in your Streets, while the Servants of the Lord lie in noi­ſome Holes and Priſons; And give Liberty of Conſcience unto the People of God to worſhip him (which is the main thing that I contend with you for) that the Servants of the Lord may have free Liberty to labour for the reducing of People from thoſe afore-mentioned, and all other Vices, which tend to the deſtruction of Youth, and to the deſtroying both of ſoul and body: And this is the way for you (if there be any) to purchaſe the good-will and favour of God, and to be eſtabliſhed in ſafety and ſecurity in your Government; and if any (who are ſelf-ſeekers and time-ſervers) ſhall (for ſelf-ends) counſel you other­wayes, ſuch (you ſhall know in the day of the Lord) are evil Counſellors, and ought not to be received by you, but denied.

And Friends, one thing more I would preſent to your Conſideration, which hath been oft laid before you in times paſt, and as oft forgotten by you, that is this; What hath been the ground and original cauſe of all the late Overturnings which have been in this Nation? if it be rightly weighed and conſidered, will it not appear that Cruelty and Oppreſ­ſion of mens Conſciences in matters relating to the Service of God, was the main original Cauſe thereof? I confeſs I cannot but marvel that you ſhould be ſo blinded (with your preſent proſperity) that you cannot ſee and conſider theſe things, and labour to avoid that which was the cauſe of their overthrow and ruine that are gone before you, but to run on ſo headlong and inconſiderate, as though you were haſtning with deſire to bring the Wrath of God upon you: For mark Friends, when did any eſcape the hand of God in any Age or Generation, or where were any eſtabliſhed in ſafety that took in hand this work of Oppreſſion, and perſecuting the Seed of God and his People? Conſider from Pharaoh (that great Oppreſſor) unto this day, and you will find that in all ages, this work of Perſecuting and oppreſſing the People of God, was the very Cauſe of the overthrow and ruine of the Perſecutors; as for inſtance, the great Perſecution and Cruelty that was exerciſed by the then Powers of the Nation in Queen Maries dayes; what was the iſſue thereof? Was it not the very overthrow and rooting out of that Perſecuting Power, Religion, and Faith? &c. And doth not their name (who exerciſed that Cruelty) remain as an ill ſavour unto all ſober Peo­ple (truly fearing God) unto this day? And could they by all their Tyranny then exerciſed, root out or extinguiſh that Faith and Religion, that they then ſtrook at? Nay, they could not, though it was but (as I may ſay) the beginning of Reforma­tion and coming out of the Apoſtaſie; but its true indeed, they Killed, Deſtroyed, and Murthered many, but bleſſed be the Lord that did not ſhake the reſt ſo, as to make them fall, but rather eſtabliſh them. And certainly Friends, although you ſhould be permitted (as they were) to deſtroy many of us by your Laws and Decrees made, or to be made, yet you cannot thereby deſtroy the Faith of others, neither can you poſſibly accompliſh your deſire, nor root out the holy Seed which is now ſprung and riſen, and muſt repleniſh Nations, and cauſe the Deſolate places to be inhabited, though indeed you may thereby root out and deſtroy yourſelves; which is ſad to con­ſider.

So Friends, much more might be ſaid unto you, and many ſound Reaſons and Ar­guments might be produced to convince you, how unſafe it is for you to perſevere in this work of Perſecution and Cruelty, but I know you will (many of you, if not moſt of you) kick againſt it, and harden your hearts, and will not believe; wherefore I have choſen rather to be as brief as I may, only to diſcharge my Conſcience to you in the ſight of the Lord, that I may be clear of your blood, and ſo ſhall conclude even with a few words, telling you, that this work which you have begun, and put your hand unto, will be too hard for you; for when did ever any yet riſe up againſt the Lord and proſper? Or do you think to prevail againſt the Ancient of Dayes, although your Predeceſſors could not? O nay, it cannot be. But then you will ſay, that it is not the Work of God that you oppoſe, but Hereſie and Sedition, &c. I anſwer; So ſaid your Prede­ceſſors, the Perſecutors in all Generations, when they ſlew the Prophets, and crucified the Son of God, and perſecuted the Apoſtles; they charged them with Blaſphemy and Sedition, and Turners of the World upſide down, and ſaid, the Earth was not able to bear them, &c. Yet that would not be a ſufficient excuſe for them in the day when God took Vengeance, neither will it be a ſufficient excuſe for you in the day when you muſt (all without reſpect of perſons) give an account unto God for all your deeds done in the body: Wherefore beware leſt that come upon you, which was ſpoken by the Prophet of old, ſaying, Behold ye Deſpiſers, and wonder, and periſh, for I work a Work in your dayes, a Work which you can in no wiſe believe, though a man declare it un­to you.

I am a Friend to the whole Creation of God, and have the mind of the Spirit of the Lord, who wills not the Death or Deſtruction of any, but rather that all ſhould return and live. J. C.

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TextTo the king and both Houses of Parliament, (who have made laws and decrees, and caused them to be put in execution, to restrain and prohibit people from having the liberty of their consciences in the exercise of the worship of God) this is sent as a warning from the Lord.
AuthorCoale, Josiah, 1632?-1668..
Extent Approx. 14 KB of XML-encoded text transcribed from 1 1-bit group-IV TIFF page image.
SeriesEarly English books online.
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(EEBO-TCP ; phase 2, no. A81044)

Transcribed from: (Early English Books Online ; image set 172573)

Images scanned from microfilm: (Early English Books, 1641-1700 ; 2639:12)

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Bibliographic informationTo the king and both Houses of Parliament, (who have made laws and decrees, and caused them to be put in execution, to restrain and prohibit people from having the liberty of their consciences in the exercise of the worship of God) this is sent as a warning from the Lord. Coale, Josiah, 1632?-1668., Crook, John, 1617-1699., England and Wales. Parliament., England and Wales. Sovereign (1660-1685 : Charles II). 1 sheet ([1] p.) s.n.,[London :1664]. (Signed: ...Kingstone upon Thames the 5th of the 9th month, 1664 ... J.C. [i.e. Josiah Coale].) (Attributed to John Crook by Wing.) (Appears at reel 2638:23 as Wing (2nd ed.) item C4759.) (Reproduction of original in: Friends' Library (London, England).)
  • Liberty of conscience -- England -- Early works to 1800.
  • Persecution -- England -- Early works to 1800.
  • Broadsides -- England -- 17th century.

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ImprintAnn Arbor, MI ; Oxford (UK) : 2011-12 (EEBO-TCP Phase 2).
  • DLPS A81044
  • STC Wing C7214A
  • STC ESTC R224303
  • EEBO-CITATION 45789263
  • OCLC ocm 45789263
  • VID 172573

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