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WHAT THE POSSESSION OF THE Living Faith is, And the fruits thereof, And wherein it hath been found to differ from the dead faith of the World, in the learning and following of Chriſt in the Regeneration.

With An Opening of Light to all ſorts of People that waits for the Kingdom of God;

And a Candle Lighted to give the ſight of the good Old Way of God, from the wayes that now enſnares the ſimple.

Written by James Naylor in the time of his Impri­ſonment, and now Publiſhed by a Friend.

LONDON, Printed for Thomas Simmons at the Bull and Mouth near Alderſgate, 1659.

3FOraſmuch as a right Faith is the onely ground of mans Eternal happineſs, and the onely thing which gains the Creature an entrance towards his Creator, and without which it is impoſſible to pleaſe God, though much hath been ſaid of it already, yet I having found by learning the true and living faith which hath the living power, different from that faith which is dead and without that power; And ſeeing that ſo many at this day are at eaſe in a dead faith, and their ſouls in the grave, In tender love thereto I am ſtirred up to declare ſomething of the faith of Chriſt which I have found onely effectual to Salvation and Reconciliation with God. And ſomewhat the rather in regard the Enemy hath ſpread ſo many falſe reports of me touching my faith in Chriſt Jeſus, which here I ſhall declare in plaineneſſe, for the ſatisfying of ſimple minds who deſire to know Truth rather then to Re­proach it; and for thoſe who ſeek occaſion, I chuſe rather to bear their reproach that are in that Nature, then contend therewith, for my work is not with Fleſh and Blood, nor is it in my Spirit to ſtrive with any about words that ſtir up ſtri­vings and contention and edefie not, but with God I ſtrive dai­ly, and to that of God in all I ſeek to be manifeſt which reſiſts not evil, but ſeek to overcome it with good, waiting for the Kingdom of God in all, and the Souls Redemption out of death, and the Seed out of bondage, and where that is not effected in meaſure, I look not to be owned, nor my witneſs received, though it be not of my ſelf, but Chriſt Jeſus in me.

And firſt a Faith or belief I have found in the World, of which I ſhall ſay little in this place, having found indeed lit­tle in it to the Salvation of Life; It's a literal Faith ground­ed upon the Hiſtory of the Scripture touching God and Chriſt, and what Chriſt did in that Temple which the Jewes deſtroyed at Jeruſalem, &c. but doth not know him in Spirit, nor believe him as his Name is EMANUEL to all Generations, and ſo doth not neceſsarily work the believer into a conformi­ty to that head, in his then walking, by his coming again in4 the ſame Spirit and Power, working in them the ſame Will, Mind, and Affections, and Obedience to the Father in their meaſure which was in him the Example, Author, Worker and Finiſher of the True and Living Faith.

And of this Faith (being ſomewhat dreſſed by the ſeveral Opinions of men) are all the unclean Spirits living in what­ſoever abomination is to be mentioned in the world, all Sects and Opinions, or whatever may be found in all Colours in theſe Northern Parts of the World, with this Faith they are covered, and this is their ſtrength, and here they take com­fort to themſelves againſt all Reproof within or from without, though living openly in the greateſt Wholedonies againſt the Spirit of Holineſs, Carnal or Spiritual that can be mentio­ned, even at a diſtance from Chriſt in his whole life, yet they believe Chriſt came to ſave ſinners, of which they are chief; and they that are whole need not the Phyſitian, &c. And ſo the greater their wickedneſſe is, the nearer to Chriſt they be­lieve; And by this Faith he that came to ſave People from ſin and to lead out of ſin both by Example and Spirit, is made a cover for all filthineſs of fleſh and Spirit, and to ſtrengthen the heart of wickedneſſe againſt the life of holineſſe, ſome in one ſin ſome in another, but with this Faith do all ſorts ſtrengthen themſelves and hardens their hearts againſt the light of Chriſt and that Spirit which reproves the World of ſin, and convinceth of it, and would lead out of it; and hence it is that the witneſſe of God that is holy in all, is trampled under foot in all, and little regarded in any, but by this Faith believed on in none to be the way to the Father, though the world have no light but it, nor is there a Promiſe of Life in any other: And this to me appears to be that Faith of the Devil or dead Faith the Apoſtle ſpeaks on, Jam. 2. though more hardned in it againſt Gods fear, for the Devils when they believe tremble at it; So this Faith I leave, being judged already by its fruits with the light of Chriſt in every honeſt heart that loves holineſs.

And of that Faith I ſhall ſpeak ſomthing in which I have found a meaſure of the Life of Chriſt made manifeſt in my mortal Body, in which life alone is the True and Eternal uni­on and atonement with the Holy God, into whom no unclean5 thing can enter, And this is not a notion of what was done in another generation paſt or to come, hundreds or thouſands of years diſtance, but that which leads to the beginning of the work of a new Creature at this day, and a new birth ſpiritu­ally begotten and born and brought to light, without which none can ſee the Kingdom of God nor enter therein; And this Faith doth not work by the comprehenſions of brain knowledge, that becauſe I could here conceive or declare of Chriſt Jeſus, from the beginning to the age thereof in words or thoughts, that therefore I have learned him, or know him as I ought to do, or am grown up in him to a perfect man, and ſo to deceive others by declaring and boaſting of what God hath not wrought in me, as a man may eaſily do and deceive his own ſoul, and bewitch others alſo, by leading them out of their meaſures of Gods preſent work in them. But of the liv­ing Faith wch now worketh powerfully in ſpirit by love there­to, the miſtery whereof is holden forth in a pure conſcience, working out the old leven, purifying the heart and making all things new, judging and killing and crucifying with Chriſt in ſpirit the works of the fleſh, and caſting out every thing in me that is not of God, and renewing in me the things of God in their order by his mighty working in me, in which the ſoul is raiſed out of the grave, and the dead reſtored to life, actually and not in conceit. Of the Grounds and Workings of this Living Faith I ſhall ſpeak ſomething.

And though the foundation of this Faith or beginning of it was, that I did really believe in that which Chriſt did and ſuffered at Jeruſalem, and that therein that veſſel he bare the ſins of the World, and ſatisfied the wrath of God for ſins paſt, and overcame death, hell and the grave, and made way for the Seed to ariſe in all through the whole World who would believe in his light which then ſhined through him to all men, wherein he might be ſeen to be the Way, the Truth and the Life apparent, openly triumphing over all that had paſſed a­bove the Seed. And much more might be ſaid of him there finiſhed, all which I did believe according to Scripture, which was as an opening of me to receive him from Heaven in the ſame ſpirit and power, without which I could not have received the gift of that holy Spirit, God having ſo purpoſed from the6 beginning, that the Covenant of Eternal Life and power ſhould be received no other way but by faith in him, who in the fulneſs of time was there manifeſt in fleſh, for the taking away ſins paſt, and making a way for the Reſurrection of life over all, to ſave from ſins for time to come.

The effect of which Faith when in the Light I firſt received it, did turn my mind out of all my ſins paſt, and took my mind out of them and turned me towards God, and holineſs of life I then believed to attain in that faith, and receive power there­in to grow up in him to his fulneſs and ſtature, which then I ſee no leſs Faith could ſave me then the perfect Faith of the Son God, which before I had not received, but then received with ſuch gladneſſe of heart, that it ſet my face and de­lights out of all ſin towards the perfection of Chriſt in which I then believed, which was the Joy then ſet before me; yet was not the work done and finiſhed in me already, though (I having received the Faith and Hope of the Son of God, and was turned from all my former ſin and my own righteouſneſs, ſo that) if I had departed this Body, I had died in no leſs Faith then the Holy Faith of Chriſt Jeſus, and ſo being turned to his Spirit out of the works of the Fleſh, I was turned from my ſin, and ſo from condemnation, yet was there a great work to do in me before I could witneſs freedom from the body of death, and the root and ground of evil removed, and the ſeed raiſed to reign, and the ſoul brought into the holy City, the reſurrection of the dead, and fellowſhip in the Father and the Son, &c. And that glorious liberty of the new Creature, and all things to be of God in me, as the ſcriptures do witneſs; ſo this faith didnot work me into a conceit of my ſelf, glorying in knowledge, and ſo to become a Teacher of others what I had conceived below the life, but it led me down into the obedience of the Spirit of Light, to wait therein for the Reſur­rection of Life, and I came to ſee in that Light that the moti­ons of ſin did ſtill work from the old ground and root, and that muſt be removed by the power of Chriſt working in ſpirit, and my obedience and watchfulneſs therein was required, and that without obedience to this faith I could not come to perfect victory over the enmity, nor the glorious liberty of the Sons of God; for though this faith had turned my heart towards7 Chriſt and given me hope to attain him, yet I had not then learned him, nor was he yet formed in me, ſo was I led in the Light of Chriſt, to ſee what I had of this treaſure in the earth­en veſsel, which I found to be in me very little, and that Seed the leaſt of all Seeds, ſo I became little in that eye which told me the Truth, though I had been high in my own thoughts formerly.

And ſo to the Word of the beginning of Chriſt I was led, or the firſt Principle of the Doctrine of Chriſt, that with that which teacheth Chriſt, I might learn Chriſt in every meaſure of him as I grew therein; ſo was I brought to know him that was made under the Law, and to the foundation of repentance from dead works, and to Doctrines of Baptiſms, and to Eternal Judgement; Then came I in Truth and Life to ſee what they were doing whom the Apoſtles exhorted to work out their own Salvation with fear and trembling, after they had fully belie­ved what Chriſt had done for them at Jeruſalem in that veſſel, and many other Scriptures did he open to me as I learned him, which before to me was a Miſtery, while I learned them in meanings without the Life of Chriſt, which then was open­ed by the Revelation of Chriſt Jeſus as they came to be fulfil­led in me, being led by the ſame Spirit in that work of Faith; then came I to ſee that I through the Law muſt be redeemed from the Law, and that my redemption from it muſt not be by making it void, but by fulfilling of it, and till then it had power over me, and ſin took occaſion by it to ſtrengthen it ſelf in me; but as I came to grow in the Spirit and Power of Chriſt, I was in him brought through it, it in him fulfilled, and I dead to it as it came to be fulfilled, and the words of Chriſt I found true, I came not to break the Law but to fulfil it, and it is eaſier for Heaven & Earth to paſs away then one jot of the Law to paſs away tell it be fulfilled, and I needed not a meaning to that Scripture, but a fulfilling thereof in Chriſt Jeſus; And the School-maſter that brings to Chriſt I learned, & Chriſt formed, & the heir under Tutors, before I knew the liberty of the Son of God or perfect freedom, and then I ſaw the Scrip­tures could not be broken nor wreſted, but it muſt be learned in the life of it to Salvation, which the unlearned wreſt to their own deſtruction by meanings without life, and that it was of8 no private interpretation, but this one Spirit muſt open it all in the fulfilling thereof, and this Faith in Chriſt Jeſus onely was able to make wiſe unto Salvation of Eternal Life.

And then came I clearly to ſee Chriſt Jeſus ſet before me in all things that I was to go through, in that faith which I had firſt received, and that the attaining of him was the hope of glory, and no hope without him; and this hope was as an An­chor in all hardſhips and temptations, which was not a few I was led through, but all was counted little while I ſtood in this Faith, for the hope that was in me to win Chriſt; And I clearly ſaw that now with ſtanding my firſt faith in what he had done at Jeruſalem, yet if I did not continue therein to follow the ſame ſpirit in obedience thereto, believing therein, in all its leadings hoping to attain to Chriſt Jeſus the end of that Faith, in daily growing towards his Stature and fulneſſe, but had turned aſide, or ſet down ſhort of the leadings of that Spi­rit in the way, I had made void my hope of Glory, the work of my redemption, and that which Chriſt did at Jeruſalem (as to me) and had denyed my firſt Faith, and could not have been ſaved from wrath to come. That being the end of that Faith committed to me, that therein I might faithfully with­out doubting follow him in Spirit through all Tryals and Temptations, of which way he was a perfect example in his walking in that Fleſh at Jeruſalem, that through the Scrip­tures I might have hope, ſeeing he went the ſame way before me there in which he now leads, and that therein I might ſee him to be the ſame to all Generations as he was there, and in his Saints that followed him. And as they exhorted one ano­ther to look unto him in their Travel, who was the Author and Finiſher of their Faith, and to conſider him as an exam­ple who endured ſuch contradictions of ſinners againſt him­ſelf, leaſt they ſhould be weary of ſuffering and faint in their minds, and ſo their Faith and Hope was ſtrengthened; So alſo I looking to the ſame in him and alſo in them after him, my Faith and Patience might be doubled, and my obedience made without doubting, and my hope firm unto the end, which end was the wining Chriſt in me the Hope of Glory, the great Miſtery of Faith, which is hid from all till the Revela­tion9 of Chriſt Jeſus, and ſo when the Saints and Apoſtles had Chriſt revealed in them, they were able Miniſters of him, and had the myſtery opened, and Preached it without doubt, that myſtery of godlineſs, which was great yet hid from the world, but to them without all controverſie, God manifeſt in fleſh, not God fleſh, but manifeſt in fleſh, which myſtery of Faith they held in a pure conſcience, and ſo I knew my Faith to be the ſame Faith once delivered to the Saints, and the good fight of that Faith I came to know, and that Faith which overcomes the world, which hath the promiſe and in­heritance of Eternal life, which all that go back from denyes the Faith of Chriſt, and ſets up a Faith without Chriſt which is not the faith of Chriſt, and ſo in the learning of Chriſt I came to ſee the Faith of Chriſt from faith to faith, and the faith of Devils, the living working faith, and the dead faith without works, and I find that Chriſt never be­lieved that he could never be perfect nor overcome the Devil, nor overcome ſin, it was never the Faith of Chriſt to make void the Law of his Father unfulfilled in him; it was never his faith to revenge evil but to overcome it with good, it was never his faith to reſpect perſons, or that he could commit ſin and not be the ſervant of ſin; it was never his faith to ſue, con­tend or fight or perſecute any, to judge for rewards, or Preach for hire, or any way to ſerve the Mammon of this world, it was not his Faith to obſerve his own will, his own times, or the worlds cuſtomes, but to obſerve his Father in all things, and onely what he received from him that he did, and could do nothing of himſelf, he never believed them to be children of God who ſaid and did not.

And much ſuch like things as theſe were never by him be­lieved, but is the worlds faith to uphold them in ſin & luſts, who are enemies to the Faith of Chriſt wch preſents perfect to God by working out ſuch evils; All whieh I eame to ſee, not by man, but in the Revelation of Chriſt as in his Faith I learned him, growing into his Faith, into him and his life therein made manifeſt in my body; So I ſee what is his in truth as the truth is in Jeſus, and what is the worlds and but called his to oppoſe him; And I ſee that which loves the things of this world to be none of his love, nor that his joy that takes plea­ſure in viſible things, nor that his liberty which is in the works10 of the fleſh, nor that his peace that is in ſin, nor that his patience thats ſeeks it own revenge, nor that his glory thats in pride, nor that his worſhip wch ſtands in carnal things, nor that his honour thats ſought of men, nor that his knowledge thats after the fleſh, nor that his fear that is taught by the precepts of men, theſe are in the world and not in him, but have onely got the name to be his, but are enemies to his life, and were never begat of his Father nor learned in the Son; all which and much like ſtuff I came to ſee the deceit of, by that truth and ſimplicity I found in Chriſt, contrary to the will of man.

And ſo in the life of Chriſt I have learned to know the growth of the Faith of Chriſt and the riches of it, and the end of it, which is Chriſt Jeſus in all its working, and I alſo know the worlds faith, its uncleanneſs whoſe end is not to at­tain the Holineſs of Chriſt in life, but would live in the worlds delights and have Chriſt for a cover, and be ſaved by the righteouſneſs of another, which they have no mind to walk in themſelves; And ſo that faith works not by love which loves not the life of Chriſt, but are enemies to his Croſs, minding earthly things, and this is the earthly Faith, but the living Faith works by love to holineſs of life, and therefore purifies the heart, and the myſtery of it ſtands in a pure con­ſcience within themſelves that have it, and not in telling and comprehending what was in another, for the Devils be­lieves the Holineſs that was in Chriſt and can Preach it, but cannot inherit it, becauſe they love not to live the life of it, and by this I know them both for ever, and all that prove them in the life of Chriſt ſhall witneſs with me, the end of the one is the life of Chriſt in which himſelf walked, and the ſame obedience of the ſame Spirit to the ſame Father by the ſame power, according to the proportion of Faith received from God, which Faith is from above, and ſo layes hold on hea­venly things for its ſtrength, and ſo brings forth heavenly fruits; The other profeſſeth and promiſes great things, but ends in the world and minds earthly things, and doth not purifie the heart, nor believes ever to attain the life of Chriſt, his ſtature or fulneſs, but counts it an errour in ſuch as preſs after ſuch attainments, and ſo the end of the converſation of one is Chriſt Jeſus to hold forth in life and Power, the ſame yeſterday and to day and for ever; The end of the other is a11 liberty to ſin here while they can take any pleaſure in it, and ſanctification and ſalvation when they are dead, and accord­ing to the end of each faith ſo it works, for its impoſſible for him that cannot believe holineſs to work holineſs, but accord­ing to each mans faith ſo muſt he inherit in this world and that which is to come

And in the workings and attainments of this living power­ful faith I have found ſeveral meaſures according to my growth therein, from the Word of the beginning of Chriſt or the firſt Principle of Chriſt, and the fulneſs, age and ſtature of Chriſt, as betwixt a Babe & a man grown in ſtrength, & much working in ſpirit I found betwixt faith received of Chriſt Jeſus, & Chriſt learned in me; for though I received the faith of his fulneſs in what he was at Jeruſalem, in his fleſh there at once, yet had not I ſo learned him in Spirit & life in my mortal fleſh nor put him on at once, but in the light of Faith I ſaw I was ſo to run as to win him before I could put him on, wherein I came to ſee and know my ſelf begotten again in him by faith towards God, who is the way to God, in which way I came to ſee the begot­ten of the Father manifeſt in meaſure in me in the pure image of a Holy Child, ſeperate from the fleſhly ſinful ſeed, or Chriſt formed in me as the Scriptures witneſs, and when I did behold his pure image and his pure mind and nature ſo far contrary to my own, yet then was not he in his Kingdom nor all things put under his feet, nor could I ſay that Jeſus was then Lord in me, but by the Spirits working by this Faith I had received, and in hope thereof, was I made to endure the loſs of all things, and to deny all things that ever this holy Spirit did War againſt in me which might any way oppreſſe this holy plant or hinder its growth, owning his judgement in the light, upon what ever was in my heart or affections but him alone, though never ſo much gain in my account in the world, which judgement being owned & conſented to againſt my ſelf and all my ſelf lovers, therein was I parted from them in judgement, and ſo then was they ſubdued by the powerful workings of that Spirit and put under his feet, and I ſet free from them to ariſe with him above them, being brought from under them, and this was not done all at once, but in order as he appear­ed in the light to manifeſt every particular evil; And as that Faith I had received wrought by love to him a conſent in my12 ſpirit to his juſt judgement upon them, and I made willing to give them up to the fire and to come out of them and joyn to him in the execution, leaſt he ſhould conſume me with them as it muſt have been had I ſtayed in them, and here I found the benefit of the light which goes before his face to prepare his way, and the ſalvation of Faith which ſaved me through hope of him, that I was not deſtroyed in my ſins, which Faith and hope gave me an entrance within the vail, or a hiding place in him while the indignation was over, which was to paſſe upon the man of ſin.

And ſo a voice was heard in the wilderneſs calling out of ſin, into a way I knew not, but as the light of his Covenant led me in the ſpirit of Elias turning my heart towards him, that he might not ſmite the earth with a curſe at his coming, in which way ere I came into the Kingdom of Chriſt my pure reſt I met with many hardſhips and great travels, and many temptations and tryals within and without, but the greateſt enemies was yet within me, which would upon ever hardſhip be tempting with unbelief to deſtory this Faith and hope, which was all that I had ſet before me to encourage me to endure ſuch hardſhips, and to fol­low the light in a way I had not known, and to walk in the Clouds to meet the Lord, and to leave my former knowledge and wiſdom, and glory and riches, to go in a way I had not walked, and to abide ſuch aſſaults on every hand, every foot the world which I was called out of ready to overtake me and compaſſe me about, and to turn me back again into what I had ſeen and enjoyed, behind me, ever ſeeking to perſwade me that I ſhould never attain to him that was ſet before me in the Faith and hope; Then come I clearly to ſee, that though I had received the Faith of Chriſt as a ſhield in this War, by which I was ſaved that the wrath of God took me not away in theſe temptings and murmurings, and reaſonings and doubt­ings which did ariſe in the fleſhly part, yet the purchaſed poſſeſſion was not yet redeemed for me to enjoy at preſent, though I had heard and believed the Goſpel of ſalvation, and was ſealed with the holy Spirit of promiſe till I came to be builded up with Chriſt for an habitation of God through the the Spirit. And I found by dayly experience that my ſalvation was not compleat ſo long as my ſoul was ſubjected under any13 earthly luſt or paſſion, nor the War over, but as by the mighty working of God in me by that Spirit this came to be ſub­dued under the feet of Chriſt, and the Soul ſet above it with him to reign in the heavenly place; ſo was my Salvation nearer then when I believed, for the Soul is not ſafe while ſin lives, or the fleſh luſts, for that wars againſt the Soul, and every ſin wounds it, and this ſhall all know who are not paſt feeling, what ever their Faith be touching Chriſt Jeſus, or what was wrought in another, whilſt ſin defiles the Soul it is not ſafe, nor the honeſt heart hath peace and reſt, for the reſt and peace is placed in the Holy City where comes no unclean thing, into which the Soul enters not till that all righteouſ­neſs be fulfilled upon earth, & the Soul ſingled from all corrup­tion & have put on immortality, & death ſwallowed up in vi­ctory, when the ſting is taken away, which is ſin, & the ſtrength of ſin, which is the Law, which is not taken away but where it is fulfilled, there onely grace reigns through righteouſneſs, and this I found to be truth as the truth is found in Jeſus, as I came to learn him and put him on by Faith which I had believed; and I ſee the folly of ſuch as would make void the Law by tal­king of Faith and Grace, where ſin is yet ſtanding, and the Soul taken captive therewith, which I had often ſought peace therein to my ſelf, but could not inherit liberty to my Soul any other way but as it came to be purified in obedience through the Spirit.

And this work was not wrought in me by the knowledge of Chriſt after the fleſh, but as I came to learn him in Spi­rit, for ſpiritual wickedneſs had taken my Soul captive, and by the Spirit it muſt be ſanctified and ſet free. And I came to ſee that if I had been in his company here on earth as long as his Diſciples were in the fleſh, and ſeen as much as they did, and heard from his own mouth, I ſhould have been ſhort of this work as they were, in whom the Child was unborn when he went away in the fleſh, and they knew not what Spirits they were of, until he came again to them in Spirit and was revea­led in them; then could they preach the Reſurrection of the dead and the Souls Redemption, and deſired to know him no more after the fleſh, when once they had received him in Spirit, but Preached Chriſt within the Hope of Glory, who till then looked for an outward kingdom and glory, until they had re­ceived,14 his promiſe, He that dwelleth with you ſhall be in you, I will not leave you comfortleſs, I will come unto you; the world ſeeth me no more, but ye ſee me, and becauſe I live, ye ſhall live alſo; at that day ye ſhall know that I am in my Father and you in me and I in you, And this was his promiſe, whom they received, whom the world ſeeth no more, whoſe expectations are carnal, neither can any ſee the Kingdom of Heaven but who are born of this Spirit and Heirs of this Life, and he that hath the Son hath life, and he that hath not the Son hath not life, but the wrath of God abides upon him whatever he may ſay he believes, and none hath the Son but as they receive this Spirit, and are led by this Spirit, and born thereof. And this I found alſo, that this Son of God doth not appear in any within or without, but as he conforms them to his own Image, which he hath alwayes born in this world, as ſaith the Scripture, When he ſhall appear we ſhall be like him, who ſhall change our vile bodies and make them like his glorious body, from glory to glory by the ſame Spirit; And herein we have boldneſs in the day of Judgement, be­cauſe as he is ſo are we in this preſent world; and this is not obtained with thoughts of believing without, but by a lively working Power, which works out the earthly image and nature, and conforms to the heavenly in that ſpiritual birth which is not of fleſh and blood, nor could fleſh and blood ever diſcern it in whom it was, but ever hated it in whom it hath appeared in all ages; Which is of a ſhining nature where it is begotten of the Father, and can­not be hid where it is formed, but by his fruits gives light to the world contrary to the worlds wayes, ſhowing of his co­ming to Judgement againſt the deeds of darkneſs; And this heavenly begetting of the Father is to be holden forth in that clear Image of the Father, according to every ſeveral mea­ſure as he grows therein without mixture, that all may ſee that he is not of this world, who alſo takes them out of this world as he grows in any or they in him, forth of the world they muſt go bearing his reproach, that the Scriptures may be fulfilled, they are not of this world, even as I am not of this world, and this is the worlds light and condemnation, even his coming. And ſo I find that Faith which joyns to the15 world where it is, and doth not overcome the world, is not the faith of Chriſt, nor layes hold on the Power of Chriſt, though Faith may believe the Hiſtory of the Scriptures con­cerning Chriſt, which faith ſets not up the Kingdom of God in the heart, and caſts out the world there; that faith ſaves not the Soul from the pollution of the world through luſt, and ſo is but a conceit of Salvation and not the Power of Sal­vation, as ſaith the Scriptures, Whoſoever is born of God overcometh the world, and this is the victory that overco­meth the world, even your Faith; and the faith which works not thus, is like a body without a ſpirit which is dead; But the living Faith that ſtands in Chriſt Jeſus, that Spirit puri­fies the heart and Conſcience, and makes toward God in Chriſt the example in all good things, overcoming what ever would let the appearance of Chriſt in his temple, or hinder the bringing forth his vertues which is believed to be in him, to the utmoſt of what ever he hath received of the Father for ſuch believers, who believes not in a lye, but in the Truth and Power of God as it is in Chriſt Jeſus, and hath been decla­red in Scriptures, not for a diſcourſe, but for an inheritance of life, of whoſe fulneſs we all receive according to our Faith, till his coming and we be compleat in him, and he in us; and ſo not come ſhort of the Glory of God, the end of our Faith and Converſation, that to the world he may be manifeſt in life and power to be the ſame that ever he hath been, though he have appeared in ſeveral forms in the fleſh, yet one in Spi­rit to make up a compleat body.

And therefore we find thoſe who were of this Faith witneſ­ſed Chriſt preſent (which the worlds faith could never receive under any form or profeſſion, but counted it blaſphemy, and that ſpirit the ſpirit of the Devil) And ſo Iſaiah witneſſed this Child born to them that ſo believed in his time, who was the mighty God, the everlaſting Father, &c. whoſe Name they knew to be Immanuel, and this was before he appeared in that Temple at Jeruſalem; and Ezekiel was called the Son of man before that time alſo; and Paul ſaid he was revealed in him, and ſpoke in him and wrought in him, and in his fleſh that which was behind of the afflictions of Chriſt was to be filled up for his bodies ſake which is the Church, and to whom16 he forgave any thing in his time, he forgave it in the perſon of Chriſt; and many more might be noted who confeſſed the ſame Chriſt in them preſent, both before and after his time at Jeruſalem, which Teſtimony could never be received (by the wiſdom of the world) in his Temples, before nor then, nor ſince to this day, for the god of this world being King in the heart, and having blinded the eye of the mind that ſhould ſee his ſpiritual Glory through the light of the Goſpel, he perſwades the world that he is either paſt or to come, but ne­ver preſent; and as many as are brought to confeſs him before men find it ſo at this day, who are hated of all men for his Names ſake, that the Scriptures may be fulfilled, and his Te­ſtimony finiſhed.

And this Faith which confeſſeth him preſent, is that which the world cannot bear nor receive, who will preach him them­ſelves at a diſtance, what he was and will be, but this faith cannot reach his coming at preſent in any meaſure to grow to his appearance now, nor will this faith ever give an entrance into his Kingdom upon earth, nor the holy reſt, nor is this the Faith of Chriſt (that puts him thus afar off) which fills with all the fulneſs of God.

And by what I have learned, this is clear to me for ever without any more Controverſie, That the faith that admits of ſin is not Chriſts Faith, nor hath any ſhare or poſſeſſion in him; that faith which is not holy came not from God, and ſo cannot build up to God; that is not ſaving Faith that doth not ſave from ſins, but is deceiving faith which deceives the Soul, and ſuffers luſt to defile it and deſtroy it, and ſo brings it under Condemnation, by believing lyes, and ſo letting in ſin upon the Soul by conſent, perſwading that it cannot be otherwiſe; and ſo gives the Devil victory and the world vi­ctory, and the fleſh victory and ſin victory over the Soul, which ſhould give the Soul victory over all; And what grea­ter deceit can there be to the Soul then this is? And there­fore for ever that which I have ſeen and learned do I declare o­penly, that this is the deceiving faith, indeed rather unbelief then the Faith of Chriſt, which makes way for the god of this world to reign and act in things contrary to the life of Chriſt in the Creature, and the life of the Soul; and that faith17 which gives way to the leaſt ſin is not the Faith of Chriſt, whoſe work and comings is to deſtroy the works of the Devil, and redeem the Soul from ſin, and the leaſt meaſure of that Faith that ſtands in his life overcomes the world and ſin in that meaſure; and he that commits ſin goes out of that Faith and acts againſt it; And a lying faith I have found that to be which perſwades the Soul of freedom from Condemnation, but gives it not freedom from ſin which is the cauſe of Con­demnation, and all ſhall witneſs this with me now or here­after, that where ſin hath power there death hath power, and the grave and hell and condemnation hath power alſo, for theſe are the wages of ſin, then ſhall you ſay you were deceived who believed the contrary; And may not ſuch truly be ſaid to be paſt feeling indeed, who can commit ſin and feel no Condemnation for it already? And this is the effect of their falſe faith, to harden themſelves againſt the faithful witneſs of God in their own Conſcience, and the ſeared Conſcience hath made ſhip wrack of the Faith Chriſt, and the doctrine of Devils preaches the faith of Devils to give way to the works of the Devil, which all ſin is from the leaſt to the greateſt, and he that pleads for it is a father to it, and he that commits it a ſervant, and may look for the wages thereof if he repent not, not­withſtanding he believe the contrary.

And many may feel this Truth at this day, who have a long time believed with this faith, deceiving their own ſouls day af­ter day, believing they ſhall not be condemned, when they are condemned already in their own hearts, and feel the weight of ſin daily preſſing their Souls, and burthening the pure Conſcience, and the fear of death and ſin keeps their Souls ſtill in bondage, and lyes upon them all their lives, and yet they will force themſelves to believe contrary to Holy Faith and a good Conſcience that they are ſaved and redeemed, and thus make ſhip wrack of ſaving Faith and a good Conſcience, by believing a lye contrary to their own daily feeling, no o­ther thing to encourage them therein but this perſwaſion, which ſutes well with ſuch as take pleaſure in unrighteouſneſs, which perſwaſion comes not of God, but condemned by that of God in themſelves; and this is the ſtate of many at this day, though ſome there be whoſe Conſcience are ſeared, and18 feel not this witneſs living in them, though their damnation ſlumbereth not, though they have loſt their Calling and Ele­ction alſo.

And this have I learned in Chriſt, that there is a great dif­ference both in effect and nature betwixt that Faith which is the gift of God, and that faith which men make to them­ſelves, for that which is the gift of God is of his own na­ture, clean, pure and perfect as are all his gifts, and ſo it works naturally the Work and Will of God in all who receive it freely and mix nothing with it to darken it or ſtop his work­ing, and by this Faith I am ſaved from ſin and condemnation, and begotten to the Father thereof in Chriſt Jeſus, which Faith is not of my ſelf but is the gift of God, to perfect holi­neſs in the fight of God, and what ever is done in this Faith is not ſin, and whatſoever is againſt this Faith or not of this Faith is ſin, and brings Condemnation, and this Faith ap­proves not of it; And if I act nothing doubtingly nor againſt this holy Faith, in this Faith I am juſtified in my own heart, and my own Conſcience kept clean, and I approved in Gods ſight, and I have boldneſs through the obedience of Faith in the day of Judgement, that it is not my own work but the righteouſneſs of Faith which is in Chriſt Jeſus, and this effect hath ſaving working Faith, and this is its Nature and Grace.

But another faith I have found which is not ſo in nature or effect, being not freely received from above, but is fained and hath its ground here below, and its ends alſo; The earthly man in his wiſdom from the letter, reaſon or comprehenſions, ſets up an opinion or Image in his mind touching God or Chriſt, or Religion, Worſhip, Doctrine or Manners, or any o­ther thing, and then looking upon the likelineſs of it in the reaſoning part, gathers ſtrength to believe it muſt needs be ſo, and ſo forms a faith in himſelf; And though this faith be not perfect when he hath formed it and made it with all his ſtrength, but many things in Scriptures and the practiſe of the Saints (but eſpecially that of God in his own Conſcience will not ſute with it) yet the ſtrong man being above in the ſtrength of his Comprehenſion, forceth a Faith a­gainſt all theſe, and cauſes all to bow under it; ſo this faith brings not forth the birth of Chriſt, nor19 his pure Image and Life, neither in matter of Worſhip nor Manners, but what he may imitate Chriſt and the Saints in worſhip and keep the world, and eſcape the Croſs, and ſave his life and credit and glory there, that he will conform to, and glory in, and for the reſt he believes it concerns not him now in all things at this day ſo to walk as they did; And as this Faith is not perfect in Worſhip, ſo in Practice alſo; for that evil he is not addicted to he condemns in all, but that which is in his own heart and eye, and brings him profit and pleaſure, that he will cover, and believes it may ſtand with true belief at this day though formerly it could not; And this is the Faith made after man and not after God, and ſo ſerves in reſpect of Perſons, Times, and Things, but bows not all theſe for ever to worſhip in Spirit, nor brings them under the foot of Jeſus that Spirit, but being earthly by na­ture hath earthly effects, and God doth not own that with his Power, nor goes forth with that which man makes, but with his own Gift, which is good and perfect in every meaſure thereof; And this alſo I have learned in Chriſt Jeſus, and de­clare to all that ſeek Faith in him, That I never received any meaſure of this Faith of Chriſt in vain, but whatever I acted or ſuffered therein, from the leaſt meaſure till this day, in it I prevailed, againſt what ever the light of the Spirit led me out therein, and a ſhield I have found it, and a growth in it towards Chriſt Jeſus in every work of it, wherein I have ſtood ſingle to the end, however tempted or tryed before the end appeared, yet in the end of that Faith I was ever a Conqueror through the Spirit, and whoever proves it to the end in ſingle­neſſe of heart, ſhall be witneſs with me herein, with a Cloud of witneſſes that have gone before, who by this holy Faith have prevailed over the powers of ſin, and entered into the holy Reſt, who have not ſought their own Kingdom but the Kingdom of Chriſt.

And only this pure Faith which works towards the appear­ance of Chriſt in all actions and ſufferings, is that which or­ders all things in their place and time, and fits all Relations for his appearance therein to glorifie God, for God is not glorified in any thing upon Earth but in which the Son ap­pears, who is the expreſs Image and Glory of God, and in20 whom alone he Reveals himſelf and the glory of his Judge­ments and Mercy, the Grace and Truth of God is in his face in whom ever he appears; And ſo every meaſure of the hea­venly Faith works towards the heavenly appearance, and the earthly faith to the earthly appearance; And ſo Faith in God is that which works effectually by love to the Image and Life of God in this world, which is ſeen onely in his ſpiritual beget­tings, which being believed in and ſet above, ſhines forth in every meaſure ſhewing the vertue and glory of the Spirit of God; but the fained earthly faith admits of ſome earthly thing in the heart for its end, in love to which it works diſo­bedience to the Spirit, and ſo comes ſhort of the glory of God, for it cannot hold forth the fruits of the Spirit to glorifie God with an earthly lover in the heart, nor can one faith ſerve God and Mammon; ſo he that loves the things of this world is Gods enemy, whoſe faith withſtands the appearance of Chriſt in his actions or ſufferings, and ſo withſtands the glory of God which therein ſhould be manifeſt to all men, and this is that faith which ever of old hath put him afar off, yet gets the form and words to withſtand the life and vertue; And of this ſort they are of whom the Apoſtle ſpeaks, having a form of godlineſs, but deny the power of godlineſs, who ever was the greateſt enemies to the coming of Chriſt, being not of the Faith of Chriſt, nor of the Spirit of Chriſt, but being from below, withſtands his coming from above to be brought forth in his vertue, or worſhipped in his Spirit; this is Antichriſt.

And this ſpirit and this faith it is that wreſts the Scriptures to ſeduce from Chriſt, and deſtroy the way of his coming; and to that end what Chriſt really Commands to be brought forth of his life and vertue in real appearance, this ſpirit ſerves himſelf with a meaning, inſtead of ſerving Chriſt with real actual obedience; And ſo his birth is a meaning inſtead of the life of Chriſt, and this he ſets to oppoſe that life, leaſt it ſhouldd be born into the world; as for inſtance, when Chriſt faith in Scriptures, Him that ſmiteth thee on the one cheek offer him the other, and him that ſues thee and takes thy coat, forbid him not thy cloak alſo, and him that takes a­way thy goods ask them not again, reſiſt not evil, but but o­vercome21 evil with good, and love them that hate you, and many ſuch like Commands which Chriſt means really and in­deed, and led an example in himſelf; and who ever receives the ſame Spirit, it moves to the ſame things as it grows in any, and being obeyed will bring forth the ſame fruits, to glorifie the Father thereof to all Generations, which Spirit waxeth not old, nor in its fruits barren, where it is really received in the Faith thereof and obeyed. But faith this other faith in the earthly ſpirit, Chriſt did not mean as he ſpoke, you muſt not take him litterally, thoſe words muſt have a ſpiritual meaning; and this ſpiritual meaning of his is to devour the life of this obedience both in Letter of Chriſt and Spirit of Chriſt, and to ſet up a ſubtle meaning without the life of Chriſt and contrary to his example, and this he will have to take place in all, both againſt the plain words of Chriſt his ex­ample in his walking, and the working of his Spirit in others; & if he cannot deſtroy this faith and fruit before it be brought forth, then his work is to render him a high Blaſphemer, in whom this Child is born and brought forth to light, and counts it high preſumption for any to witneſs the life of Chriſt in them by bringing it forth into the world, yet himſelf will preach Chriſt in him, and the Life of Chriſt in him, and the Spirit of Chriſt in him, and his body the Tem­ple of God, &c. becauſe he finds theſe words in Scripture; but if any worſhip in that Temple ſo as to believe and obey unto life openly, that he cannot own without a meaning in­ſtead thereof, and ſo he ſets the form to deny the Power, and Chriſts Words he wreſts to deny his coming; And how long this faith hath profeſſed him to come (and his Life and Glory at his coming) in its own carnal Comprehenſions, ma­ny may witneſs: but is never like to receive him in the ſame Life and Spirit and Power in which he ever appeared, and ſo to that generation is he ever to come, but never preſent, further then to make a cover for ſins paſt and preſent, and an encouragement for ſin to come; and thus the devourer turns the beſt of things into a lye in all that believes him, that he may keep Chriſt and the Soul from their preſent union, which he could not long do but by conſent of the Crea­ture, there being that of God in every one which daily draws22 towards him, where it is not quenched by believing lies, whereby ſuch as receive not the Truth in the love of it comes to be damned, as it was in the dayes of old, and a ſtrait paſ­ſage I have found into the way of Truth and life, which miſ­ſeth all his ſubtle pretences, and I have ſeen his words true who faith. Few there be that find it, the enemy being every way ready to meet them that ſeek with a ſhadow, meaning, or ſome deceit to believe in ſtead of the ſubſtance, handling the Words of God deceitfully, uſing the gifts of God to with­ſtand the life of the giver, and turning grace into lacivious liberty.

And thus have I learned in the light of the world, that in my turning towards him at his reproof when I knew him not, and believing in his light whom I had not ſeen, I found that Faith given which did declare the righteouſneſs of God in him, wherein he perfectly walked upon earth, both in doing and ſuffering, which being turned towards, I found the propi­tiation that God had ſent forth, through faith in his blood to declare his righteouſneſs for the remitting of my ſins paſt, that God might be juſt, who could not have paſt by my ſins paſt, had he not accepted his ſufferings, nor I have had liber­ty from ſin paſt to have followed him, nor could I have been accepted therein, but in the faith and hope of the ſame righ­teouſneſs; ſo God was full in juſtifying, and his forbearance magnified towards me therein, and in turning to this righte­ouſneſs of his declared in the light of faith and hope, my face was ſet towards Gods righteouſneſs in Chriſt Jeſus to be at­tained for life and ſalvation for time to come to walk in, and ſo being turned towards God, all my ſins paſt was behind me, and Gods righteouſneſs before me, and ſo from hence­forth was I to be found in Gods righteouſneſs walking in a meaſure of it, and in the faith and hope of the fulneſs of Chriſt and attainment of God for mine inheritance. And this great Redemption I found in Chriſt Jeſus at that day was in ſuch things as theſe following; As firſt his calling of me with his light, his holding forth to me his life and ſuffering, which was ſo holy that I could not but confeſſe to them, his turning me towards the ſame in hope thereof by believing, his begetting a mind in me towards that ſame life, and the in­creaſe23 of his light that way to lead me, and the ſetting of me free from the wrath of God for all my ſins of ignorance paſt, which elſe had laid upon me as a weight or chain, binding me that I could not have walked the way of his light, &c.

But I do not ſay, that if I turned to commit ſin again, that that ſin was caſt behind my back alſo, I learned otherwiſe, I found that ſin then before my face greater then the reſt, and ſtood in my way to God, and ſtopt me from following his light or growing in his life that I could no way eſcape it but by repenting of it, and receiving the juſt ſentence of condemna­tion in my ſelf, and bearing his indignation, till he that wounded me for it healed me again, which I never found but as I turned from the evil with my whole heart, and ac­cepted the puniſhment till the Advocate did ariſe to interced, whoſe blood I had trampled on, and whoſe precious life I had pierced, and his holy Spirit grieved, by turning away from his leadings.

Nor do I ſay that all my ſins which formerly I had com­mitted, of which I had been convinced by the light of the world, when I was in the world before I believed it to be ſufficient, that they was wholly taken away as my ſins of igno­rance was, for this I found that God in this was juſt and mer­ciful, merciful in that he did not lay them all at once before me leaſt they ſhould have preſt me down that I could not have followed the light nor gotten any ſtrength, but muſt needs have periſhed under them had he not ſpared. And juſt I have found him alſo; for as they were not committed all at once againſt the light of his Spirit, ſo he hath at one time or other viſited for them, and laid them before me, yet not all at once, nor no way ſo heavy as thoſe committed after I be­lieved, and gave up my ſelf to follow the light, and yet to an account he hath brought me for them; And coming to feel the terrours of God, I have learned to fear, and love, and have found the ground and riſe and deceits of that Faith that believes Chriſt to have taken away the ſins of believers paſt preſent and to come, with which many at this day make mer­ry over the witneſs of God, and the juſt ſlain in them, and that Scripture I have learned without a meaning, if we ſin wilfully after we have received the knowledge of the Truth there remains no more ſacrifice for ſin, but a certain fearful24 looking for of judgement and fiery indignation to devour the adverſary, though none know how but he that comes to it, in the fulfilling, and then ſhall be ſeen he thats born of God ſins not, and he that believes is born of God, but he that ſins turns his back both on the Faith and birth thats towards Chriſt, and becomes adverſe thereunto in his work what ever he ſayes he believes, and this I have found an ever­laſting truth what ever men believe or imagine, that no longer then a man keeps his face towards the light of God, no longer is his ſins caſt behind his back, whether they be ſins paſt, pre­ſent, or to come, but if he turn from Gods righteouſneſs, his own iniquities will riſe and meet him, both new and old, and in vain doth ſuch believe they are then blotted out of Gods ſight, whoſe oye ſhewes him his way in which he then walks and condemns him for it in his own heart.

Nor was the ground and root of ſin-removed ſo ſoon as my mind was turned by the light from ſin towards God, but the motions thereof I found, and the luſt ſeeking to go forth to its objects, to bring in to conceive ſin again afreſh; That ground was but removed as I grew in Chriſt and he in me, and as I came to learn him that was in the beginning be­fore ſin was, who was learned in faithful following and ſerving of his Spirit, in watching in Faſtings in Prayers, and in all ſpiritual wreſtlings, as I came to be led into with the light, in which Warfare I came to ſee the hardſhip of him that will be a ſouldier of Chriſt Jeſus, and the baptiſms into his death, the ſlothful ſervant and the faithful, and their re­ward and the Parables and figures of the Kingdom opened, as that Spirit grew in me which interprets the Scriptures in the life and opens the ſealed myſteries thereof in their ſeaſon, as they come to be fulfilled, and ſo I came to the gift of the Scriptures by inſpiration, which onely profits to the perfecting of the man of God, which the man of this world not having learned, wreſts to his own deſtruction, getting the words of them in the earthly part, before they be fulfilled in his heart through the Spirit, and ſuch receive them not by inſpiration, nor the gift of the Holy Ghoſt.

And in this journey I have ſeen the ſlothful ſervant over­taken with a fault which he had once caſt behind him, and never intended to joyn to again, of which the diligent ſer­vant25 is kept free, and I have ſeen the wages of each ſervant according to his diligence in that which he hath of God be­truſted in him, and not by his own ſtrivings in the thoughts of himſelf, his worth or wiſdom; And in diligent hearkening and obeying of the Spirit have I found the right faithfulneſs to­wards God, though getting knowledge be highly eſteemed with men, and I have found that as I have the Spirit mani­feſt in me to profit withal, ſo the times of my profiting is one­ly in his hand, and my waitings upon him when he moves not is my reaſonable ſervice, and a profiting time to me as if he moved, though I ſee it not, and this I found a great croſs to my haſty will, which indeed is the true worſhip in Spirit, which when I knew not this Spirit to hearken and bow to, and obey and obſerve in all things as his will leads, I worſhipped I knew not what, and my fear towards God then was taught by the precepts of men, and I was not taught of the Lord, not being born of that Spirit; and ſo all the children of the Lord are taught of the Lord, and as many as are led by the Spirit of God they are the Sons of God, theſe Scriptures I then could read and underſtand without meanings, not by that which my wiſdom taught me, but which the Holy Ghoſt taught me, and the Scriptures thus learned and received was no more a notion to be loſt, but a poſſeſſion, and I came to have an inheritance therein amongſt them that are ſanctified in all ages, & no ſubtle man could either ſteal them or change them, or any way beguil me of the Truth of them by wreſt­ing them, nor take away my comfort I had in them, my com­fort and fellowſhip therein being in the ſame Spirit and life that gave them forth, and the Word of God thus grew and endureth for ever, and the Spirit of truth that leads into all truth endures for ever, and the Seed of God is one therein to all generations, and that is one which perfects the Spirits of all Juſt men, and God himſelf is Judge over all, and leader of all by his own begettings in all that enter into this reſt of the faithful, which remains to all his children, out of which falſe Faiths and diſobedience ſhuts themſelves.

And that which declares the righteouſneſs of God for re­miſſion of ſins paſt, and for an inheritance againſt ſin for time to come, have I found to be Faith without falſhood,26 which Righteouſneſs though in the Faith and Hope beyond declaring, yet inherited but as the vertues that are in Chriſt Jeſus comes to be received in the life of them. And that faith which hath not that Righteouſneſs for its ground and end, and the vertues and ſeveral meaſures of the growth of Chriſt for its life and increaſe, That I have found upon tryal to be a fained fancy after mans mind and not after Gods meaſures: And he that ſaith he hath Faith in God and is without the hope of this Righteouſneſs for his inheritance, Or ſaith he hath Chriſt further then he hath his Virtues for his life and growth towards this inheritance, when he comes to be weighed with Truth, will be found too light to ſtand in Judgement or abide the fire, or to dwell with everlaſting burnings; The try­al of that Faith will leave him without Faith, then ſhall it be read as it is written, When the Son of man comes, ſhall he find Faith on the Earth?

Who they be that are under the Law, and who they be that have made void the Law againſt themſelves, and who they be that are under Grace.

GRace reigns through Righteouſneſs, and the Law through Tranſgreſſion; and he that ſayes he is from under the Law, and the tranſgreſſor alive, he makes void the Law againſt himſelf, but is under it in the account of God.

For the Seed or Image of God being fallen, the tranſgreſ­ſor is above to whom there is no Grace nor Life promiſed, who hath no true obedience but for ſelf-ends, upon this is the Law added till the Promiſed Seed ariſe; And a School-maſter the Law is till it bring to Chriſt, who of the Woman is made un­der the Law, who takes upon him the Seed after the fleſh, the Soul to Redeem from under the Tranſgreſſor, that the na­tural Plant of God may grow, ſo who can witneſs the Teach­ings and Chaſtizings of the Law to bring him ſo low till he come under the Seed, ſo as the ſeed be ſet above the head of the Tranſgreſſor and have bruiſed it, and ſo taken away the ſtrength of ſin, there the ſtrength of the law is taken away al­ſo; And as the Soul is raiſed up through the law, the law be­ing27 fulfilled by the ſeed through the Spirit, ſo it ariſes above the law into the Kingdom of Grace, which reigns through Righteouſneſs, and not by making void the law; for the Grace is to the Seed, and the Law to the Tranſgreſſor; and as theſe reign in the Creature, ſo is he under the Law or under Grace, for the Law hath power over the man of ſin as long as he lives, then is the Seed of the Promiſe in bondage, but he being dead by which the ſeed is held Captive, the ſeed riſes under Grace, which as it riſes through the law fulfills it, and being fulfilled it loſes its ſtrength, as ſin dies, and ſo hath no more power, the Law being the ſtrength of ſin till it be ful­filled by the ſeed through the Spirit; ſo he that is dead to ſin is free from ſin, and under Grace; And he that caſts off the the Law while he is alive that ſins, makes void the law againſt himſelf.

So he thats under Grace is dead to ſin, and dead to the Law which is the ſtrength of ſin, and ſin hath no more domi­nion over the ſoul, the power of it being ſubdued, which was the Law unfulfilled; but where the law is made void, the ſtrength of ſin yet remains, and the Law will overtake them in the end.

And he that learns this in the Death and Reſurrection, and eternal life, ſhall in this work learn what the Tranſgreſſion is, and how the law is added upon him; and how it is the ſtrength of ſin in him, but not in the ſeed, and what it is that makes the entrance through the law, and how Grace comes to abound where ſin hath abounded, and to reign through Righteouſneſſe unto eternal life.

So where the Tranſgreſſor is ſlain, there the Law is at an end and fulfilled, and the natural Plant of God brings forth againſt which there is no law, but the law is againſt the man of ſin, and the man of ſin againſt the law as long as he lives, and power it will have over him, and one jot of it will not paſſe away till it be fulfilled; And he that would caſt off the Law and make it void, is far from Grace, but in him that ful­fills the Law doth Grace and Truth abound.

28

Of the Way of Life, from the Knowledge that devoures the Life.

Wouldeſt thou know the Way of Life from that Know­ledge which devours the life; then be no longer as the wild Aſſes Colt, but take up the yoak of the Son, in whom thou ſayeſt thou believeſt, that the life of Faith thou may feel and know, for only in the obedience is the life made ſure to thee of what thou believeſt, and thereby is Faith and Know­ledge made perfect.

But until thou attain power for obedience of Faith, thou art dead and knows but words, in which thy Faith ſtands without life which accompliſhes nothing, but will ariſe to con­demn thee when thy time is out.

Therefore in all thy ſeeking, mind that which worketh in a lowly mind, calling thee into the Obedience of what is there made manifeſt in the begettings of the Father, and not in the conceivings of the Brain, but in the Son; For in the Brain­knowledge the Boaſter Rules who glories in the wiſdom of words, but not in the words of life; but in the Obedience of the Son is the Father known and glorified in ſuch as walk in the Spirit and not in the wind, whoſe praiſe is of God, and their lives hid with him from all knowledge but what is Re­vealed in the Obedience of the Son: So from man you may learn the knowledge of words, but the knowledge of life is only begotten of God; ſo he that hath the Son hath life, not of the diſobedient Nature, for the only begotten of God is Conformable to him that begetteth him in all things through Obedience.

So feeling thy meaſure of the begettings of God, in it be obedient, and ſeek not to be above it in any thing, leſt the enemy thereby get power in thee to puffe up thy mind in thy Knowledge above thy life, which devoures the life.

Therefore as thou feels Faith, Love, Meekneſſe, Gentle­neſſe, Patience, or any Godlineſſe move in the Spirit, there­in become obedient with all diligence, and thereby ſhalt thou know the power thereof againſt all the contrary motions in thy fleſh, ſo ſhalt thou learn the ſalvation of Grace unto life29 eternal, which thou canſt never attain by talking or any o­ther way but in the Obedience thereof, ſo ſhalt thou not re­ceive the grace of God in vain, nor words without the work­ing power of life, whereby the living knowledge of the My­ſtery of godlineſſe will daily encreaſe.

For by Obedience of the Spirit is the ſoul purified from its darkneſſe and pollution, and made fit for the further manifeſtation of the hidden Myſtery, and the receiving the fulneſſe thereof, and walking therein; And ſo by the holy Ghoſt thou ſhalt be able to confeſs Jeſus Lord over all powers in heaven and in earth, the opener of all ſecrets, and only revealer of the Father who begetteth, by whom thou be­comes wiſe in thy knowledge unto ſalvation, not unto vain babling, whoſe words ſhall riſe and Condemne them who glo­ry therein.

But thou, if in Spirit thou hearken diligently and obey, ſhalt know that he who ſometimes ſpoke by the Prophets doth now ſpeak by his Son, the everlaſting power of godlineſſe, only begotten of the Father, and in all things like unto him, in whom he is made manifeſt; And the Prophets have Prophe­fied of Glory to come, but the Son declares the Father in the preſent life, according to the meaſure of him formed; and as he ariſes in fulneſs he opens the heavens and gives the inheri­tance thereinto.

An opening of Light to all ſorts of Rulers and People that wait for the Kingdom of God, that you may not oppoſe him in his appearance, nor ſet up another to reign upon earth in his ſtead.

DO you ſay you ſeek God you Rulers and People, will you ſeek his face upon earth? or would you ſee his ap­pearance to reign in righteouſneſſe? or can you rejoyce to ſee him manifeſt in Fleſh? or do you love his Image who is the Father of Lights from whom you look for the Son from Hea­ven? then be not carnally minded in your expectation, leaſt you know him not in his appearance who is a Spirit, and ſo oppoſe him as your Fathers in the fleſh ever did, except30 you be born of the Spirit you cannot ſee the Kingdom of God.

The Father dwells in the light and changes not, and the Son is the light of the World in his own Image, by whom he changes all things that are out of him, and overturns ſhadows and cuſtoms, and makes the world new; and in Spirit and pow­er is his Kingdom upon Earth, and the fleſh is the Vail with which he was ever hid from fleſh and blood, but revealed in ſpirit to ſuch as deſired to know no man after the fleſh to ſet up or to worſhip; And no man could ever ſay that this Jeſus was Lord but by the Holy Ghoſt.

So with the light of the Spirit alone which ſees through the vail is Jeſus known to be Lord and King for ever, with which you may all ſee what you ſet up to be Lord and Ruler in your ſelves or over others. You that chuſe Rulers, Judges and Juſtices, Mayors and Conſtables, &c. Do you ſee through the Vail to chuſe Jeſus in Spirit to Rule over you or over o­thers? Is that eye open which knows the Holy Ghoſt, and what Veſſell is filled therewith, that you may chuſe him to Rule in his Kingdom? do you ſeek for that Spirit to chuſe withal by which alone Jeſus is known to be Lord? Then it is plain you ſeek Gods Kingdom in the face of Jeſus Chriſt who is that ſpirit, which turning to, cauſes the vail to be taken away from all hearts, and will change you alſo into his Image by that Spirit as ſaith the Scriptures. So there was none to be choſen for Judges, Kings or Rulers in Iſraels Common-wealth but who had of this Spirit and Unction put upon them, and then the Lord Reigned over them in his Anointed, whether King, Prieſt or Prophet, man or woman; but when they chu­ſed Rulers like other Nations, then they rejected (not Samuel) but the Lord, that he ſhould not reign over them. Now you that ſay you ſeek the Lord to Rule over you, and ſay thy Kingdom come, minde what you chuſe to rule in you or over you, & with what ſpirit, leaſt your practiſe oppoſe your prayers, and make void your daily expectation; do you chuſe after the fleſh as other Nations do, or do you chuſe after the holy Ghoſt? If you chuſe after the fleſh, then you ſet the vail betwixt you and the Lord, and Gods Kingdom and his Image you cannot ſee, and ſo you reject the Lord as other Nations do; but if you31 look through the Vail unto that which is within the Vail, then ſhall the vail be taken away from all your hearts, and you ſhall ſee him amongſt you whom you wait for, and him alone ſet up and worſhip, and chuſe him alone to reign over you who is near you, at hand to all that put not his day afar off.

So if you make Rulers like all the Nations, then after the fleſh, they that are rich, they that are proud, they that are full of earthly glory, &c. Here is the earth ſet above, then the Vail is before your eye and you ſee not the Lord, that Spirit, nor do you ſet up Jeſus to be Lord by the Holy Ghoſt; But if that eye be open in you, that can ſee through the Vail of earth, and all this deal of fleſh and darkneſſe to that which is within the Vail, even the Holy One in his Temple, him to chuſe and ſet above in your minds; Then your eye ſhall ſee the Lords a­nointed and the King in his Glory, and he ſhall rule whoſe right it is in every heart, and your Governous ſhall be of your ſelves, and all violence ſhall ceaſe, and ſhakings of Govern­ments, the Government being upon his ſhoulders who is the Prince of all your peace, in the great & in the ſmall, who ſhall reign in righteouſneſſe, and judge the people with equity for God and not for rewards, to whoſe authority every knee ſhall bow, and every tongue confeſſe for conſcience ſake, his Name being written in every heart will then be read, whoſe Kingdom is everlaſting, and in ſpirit and power he reigns, and in ſpirit is worſhipped in Heaven and in Earth, who fills all things with the preſence of his Glory, and his Kingdom is near to all that can believe, its within you ſaith Chriſt, and he rules where he is not known (though not to ſalvation) who is made of the Seed of David after the fleſh by the Word of God to all Gene­rations, a King for ever according to promiſe, whoſe King­dome the eye which the God of this World hath blinded is put­ting afar off, who ſees not the Light of his Glorious Goſpel though he be not afar off, but him in whom all things have life and being, either to ſalvation or condemnation, and this is the condemnation that light is come already into the World, which men who loves their evil deeds ſay is to come, and ſo looks for that without who is a Spirit within, and therein hath ever reigned more or leſſe, but now is ariſing to his day over all the World, whoſe ſound is gone out to the32 ends of the earth, and his light ariſeth in every heart, to life or condemnation, and ſome it leads into reſt, and others it pricks to the heart, and they kick againſt it and will not have it to rule therein, and to this day he is rejected of the buil­ders, who is the firſt born unto God in Spirit bleſſed over all.

And now all ſorts of people who in truth wait for the King­dom of God upon earth, with that which in you is of him, you may all ſee (if you keep that eye ſingle) when he draws near who is born of the Spirit, and when he is put afar off in his Government here below, when you behold in any manner of Authority, ſuch a ſpirit as is for God alone, looking to that of God in every man without reſpect of perſon or riches, and with a ſingle eye ſeeks to find out where that meaſure of God is tranſgreſſed in any, or where it is oppreſſed by any, and with that meaſure of God in himſelf ſeeks to ſet judgement upon the head of the tranſgreſſor, and to ſet free the innocent principle of God in all, which will not lead any to evil, then is the judgement of God and for God, and that of God is ſet above in all, that's he that's born of God; here the Kingdom of God is near, and as this increaſes ſo God draws near, and his Kingdom increaſes, and that of God in you all will anſwer thereto, and rejoyce thereat which waits for him, and that which is upright in every heart ſhall ſay that is the Judgement of God, and in that Veſſel is God on his Throne, according to the meaſure of that Spirit ſet up in Judgement, ſo is Jeſus Lord by the holy Ghoſt, known and bowed to.

But on the contrary, in what place of Authority ſoever it be, in which the Innocent comes for Judgement againſt the Oppreſſor who is too ſtrong for him, and ſo ſeeks to juſtice to plead his Cauſe and to deliver the ſeed of God that is bur­thened; And when he comes his Cauſe is not heard but is thruſt away (if not further enſnared becauſe he cannot op­preſs that of God in him more, either by bowing to ſomething of vain Cuſtoms or Worſhips never ſet up by God, nor owned by his witneſs for Conſcience ſake; Or elſe becauſe he cannot fire his judgement by feeding a Covetous Spirit which is for Rewards and not for God that he Judges, and ſo the Innocent33 ſoul is not relieved at this throne, but ſent away as an of fender, from that place where he ſhould be eaſed and juſtified with the judgement of a free ſpirit, for juſtice ſake, doth not that of God in you all teſtifie againſt this, that judgement is here turned backward in that veſſel, and that Juſus is not Lord therein? ſo the innocent heart is ſadned but not ſaved, and the Kingdom of God put afar off, and the Scepter of righte­ouſneſs not ſeen.

Wherefore Rulers and People, who ſet up fleſh in ſtead of the holy ſpirit to rule over you, the wills of men, the pride and glory of this world, or any viſible thing here below born after the fleſh; ſee what you chuſe and what you put afar off; and with that ſpirit you now chuſe you will never ſee the Kingdom of God, nor be able to ſay in truth that Jeſus is Lord; Its by the ſpirit of holineſs meekneſs and true judge­ment and works of righteouſneſs that Jeſus is known to Reign, and therein ſtands the ſight of his Kingdom and Lordſhip, in every heart, in every Court, and in every place of judgement to all generations, which you deny in chuſing the man of this world after the fleſh to rule in you or over you therein; And yet you ſay you look for him, and thy King­dom come delay, but deny him in the ſimplicity of his low­ly ſpirit to rule for his own in all, as all your Rulers ever did, as you have read in words and now may read in deeds, the world by wiſdom knows not God, ſo that ſpirit chuſes its own to rule, but cannot receive him whom you ſay you look for.

And how ſhould any one who ſees the Kingdom of God, and where the ſimplicity of Chriſt is above, own that Kingdom, or worſhip that ſpirit and not betray the ſimplicity of Chriſt and give his honour to another. And if in the meekneſs of mind you did but weigh this, you could not think it ſo ſtrange why ſo many at this day (who have received the Kingdom of God in his lowly juſt and righteous ſpirit) chuſe rather to ſuf­fer death under that ſpirit of this world then to bow to worſhip it, or confeſſe that due thereto which belongs onely to Jeſus the Lord, neither would you ſay it was obſtinacy or contempt of Authority rather to ſuffer by the will of man then to rob34 the Lord of his glory & deny Chriſt in his Kingly office, and ſet up another in his place. And herein true wiſdom may ſee that in ſo doing we reſiſt not that power which is ordained of God, nor the perſon, but that ſpirit we teſtifie againſt by ſufferings under, which God never annointed for a Saviour, holding forth the annointing as we have received for a witneſs againſt him, in the ſpirit of meekneſs, confeſſing our King in whom we re­ceive power to ſuffer; ſo to us he is come and by the gift of the Holy Ghoſt we can ſay he is Lord, therefore to us there is but one Lord, though there be many ſo called whether in heaven or in earth, yet have we but one in all, both in hea­ven and earth, and him we know where ever he is by the gift of the Holy Ghoſt, and to him in ſpirit we confeſſe and bow, and the fruits of his ſpirit are manifeſt with the light of the world, teſtifying againſt all the works of darkneſs in all the children of his Kingdom. And to us he is born who is from above the holy Child, wonderful in Councel and ſtrength, whoſe heavenly power and vertue takes our affections from all earthly objects and worſhip, whoſe name is Immanuel, and it is written in our hearts, and ſhed abroad into the world in our lives, and Chriſt Jeſus is the end of our converſation, him alone to put on, above all to Preach by walking in him as we have received of that lively image of holineſs and Truth, the annointed of God, and ſo we confeſſe him before men, who is the right Heir, in what veſſel ſoever he appears, and the prayers we give to God where this treaſure is found in the earthen veſſel, and the hope of all our glory is Chriſt within, and the increaſe of his Government is Chriſt within, of which there is no end, and with that ſpirit is all righteouſneſs eſta­bliſhed, the Kingdom of God upon earth, and Eternal life.

And where this is not ſeen, choſen and followed, there men rule in their own wills, and where mens perſons and riches is reſpected in chuſing ſuch, there the ſame is reſpected in judgement by ſuch, and the Law of God is perverted, and the ſword of Juſtice which ſhould defend the cauſe of the in­nocent is laid by, and the fiſt of wickedueſs lift up againſt that which is tender of God in every conſcience, and when this rules the righteous Seed mourns in ſecret, but wickedneſs35 reigns openly; And this is and ever was the ſtate of the Kingdom of God and the Kingdoms of the Gentiles, the one rules in the Spirit of Holineſs, and the other exerciſe Lordſhip in their own wills, choſen and ſet up not by the Holy Ghoſt, as you may read in the Scriptures concerning Iſraels common wealth, who when they wanted the ruling of this ſpirit they ſold themſelves under their enemies, but when this was their Judge they had a Saviour choſen after the ſpirit, not after the fleſh, what ever was the veſſel, the Spirit was their Saviour.

Moſes was a poor wandring Shepheard, yet in this Spirit a God to Pharaoh, and Saviour of Iſrael; Samuel a poor man who received no reward for judgement, and when they went about to chuſe another after the manner of other Nations they rejected God, who then gave them a King in his wrath; David a poor man not choſen by the outward appearance as man looks, but by the heart, by the direction of the Spirit, he was the Shepherd of Iſrael, and his ſeed of the ſame Election hath the everlaſting Kingdom of promiſe to all generations. Eliſha a plowman, yet by that Spirit was he the Chariots of Iſrael and horſmen thereof. Deborah a woman yet a Judge & deliverer to Iſrael. And too long would it be to in­ſtance in all ages how he hath ſet up his throne and ſaved his people in this Election, not of wiſdom, riches or worldly glo­ry, but the poor of this world, rich in Faith, heirs of the King­dom of promiſe, which you ſay you look for, but cannot ſee nor receive while you chuſe after the fleſh as the world hath ever done, who ſtill have bent all their wiſdom and Religion to keep the Heir out of his Kingdom, whom they have been looking for after the fleſh, but not believing in the light to give them a fight through the vail to him that is born of the Spirit have reſiſted the Holy One, and choſen the murtherer, as did your fathers ſo do you alwayes reſiſt the Holy Ghoſt, and as it was ſo it is, that which is born of the fleſh is fleſh, and chuſes after the fleſh and worſhips after the fleſh, for it can ſee no further, it cannot ſee the Kingdom of God, and that which is born of the Spirit is Spirit, and chuſes after the ſpirit, and worſhips in ſpirit, and theſe are contrary Kingdoms, and he thats born after the fleſh perſecutes him thats born after the36 ſpirit, ever did and ever will do, for the Scripture cannot be broken, which hath ſo ſaid and is now fulfilled.

And now you that are called Chriſtians, you read and Preach of this King Chriſt Jeſus and his Kingdom, what a One he ever hath been in his appearance upon Earth, by whom he hath been received and by whom rejected and after what manner he hath ever ſuffered, and by what power he hath reigned in all ages, and this you will confeſſe in words, but will you now receive him to reign in you? Or can you own his appearance where it is ſet up in others and not be offended therewith, is that eye open that knows him, or can you delight in him who was never like the world in his walkings? was not he ever poor as to this world, and there­fore rejected of the rich and learned? lowly, and rejected of Princes and them that was high? was not his work ever to change ſhadows, and forms, and Religious traditions ſet up in mens minds above the life of Truth and leadings of the ſpirit, and to ſet up ſpiritual worſhip and obedience in its place? And therefore by the builders ever rejected and con­demned, and his new work was ever fooliſhneſs to the wiſe, wherefore he bare the reproach thereof with patience; was he not ever meek and innocent and harmleſs in his converſation towards all men as a Lamb indeed, ſeperate from ſinners in life, yet ſeeking them to ſave out of ſin with the dayly giv­ing up his life, & c? So he was and ſo he hath ever appeared on earth; now can you receive you King as he was you that wait for him? Or do you think he is changed? Is he now be­come proud and lofty in fleſh after the world, cruel and covet­ous and hard-hearted, ſubtle and crafty to deceive the ſimpie, ſtrong and violent to trample on the helpleſs, doth the glory of his Scepter now ſtand in meats and drinks and fine apparel or great earthly poſſeſſions? doth he now come to take up his abode and delight in theſe things, who ever hath come to take the minds of his people out of theſe things up into the heaven­ly treaſure? doth he now delight in earthly glory, ſtrife and exaltation? Is the weapons of his Warfare now become carnal wherewith he overcomes his enemies? doth he now come with haling and beating, whips and priſons and cruel tortures to take the Kingdom of peace, who hath ſuffered ſuch things37 formerly from the world himſelf, & will he now turn oppreſſor of that which is tender in Conſcience, and grind the face of the poor, or pervert the Judgement of the needy? Should he now be ſeen in works of this nature, were this to appear the ſecond time without ſin unto Salvation as he is promiſed? Sure the vail is thick over that heart who ſees not that this is not his Kingdom, Power nor Glory, nor his Image who is the ſame yeſterday to day and for ever. Yet is this nature above in many, and choſen to Rule over many who ſay they wait for his Kingdom, that eye being darkned with the love of the world which ſhould give the true fight of his coming, the carnal mind thinks God to be like himſelf; But did you but ho­neſtly look into your own hearts, with that eye which puts a difference between things that differ in your ſelves, to know each motion of each Spirit, and each power, and the end and nature of its working, the earthly and the heavenly, you would ſoon be able to Judge of theſe two which ſo far differ in their fruits, and are ſo contrary in all things, and to own the right heir in his Kingdom; But while you ſuffer the god of this world to keep his throne in your hearts, by letting him captivate your minds and affections into earthly delights, it is not like he will ſuffer you to chuſe aright, nor receive a­nother to reign in you or over you; the eye of the minde being blinded therewith, the light of the Goſpel cannot ſhine into the heart by which you ſhould chuſe, and which gives the knowledge of God in the face of Jeſus, nor that treaſure be ſeen or received in the earthen veſſel, as King either in your ſelves or others; but the wiſe in heart knows what they wait for, and when they ſee him they rejoyce with the joy of his Kingdom which conſiſts not in carnal things, nor comes with outward obſervations, but whoſe coming is within, and whoſe Kingdom conſiſts in Righteouſneſs, Peace and Joy in the Holy Ghoſt, bleſſed be our King for ever, and bleſſed are they who put not his Kingdom afar off.

And therefore you Rulers and People of all ſorts high and low, this word is to you, and this day is to you the day of the Lord, ariſe and receive your King into his Kingdom, that he may receive you and eſtabliſh you therein; the Lord is at hand, he is near to all that call upon him in truth righ­teouſneſs.

38To you Princes, Judges, Juſtices, Mayors and Conſtables & all ſorts of Rulers who are in the place to Govern, the Lord is at hand, he is near you all, the Kingdom of God is within you, the Principle of God is within you, with which (if you mind it) he will break the yoak of the oppreſſor within you and without you by the ſword of Juſtice, that's his King­dom upon earth, put it not afar off; let it ariſe in your hearts, ſet it up above the will of man, let it ſhine in your hearts, let it ſpeak in your Courts, that which is of God in you all, which Judges juſtly and with equity; lay by your will, your pride, your covetouſneſs, and all that's above that Spirit of meekneſs in your minds, and make room in your hearts for the Holy Ghoſt, that thereby Jeſus may be Lord in you and over others, that you may know him to whom Judgement belongs, to be in you; you need not ſay who ſhall aſcend into Heaven to bring down Chriſt from above, or who ſhall deſcend into the deep to bring up Chriſt again from the dead, for he is nigh you, and you may feel his witneſs in Spirit, and his Word is in your hearts, the Word of Faith, the Word of Righteouſneſs, that therewith you may all know him, who ſtandeth in the Congregation of the mighty, to Judge among the Gods, who Judges not unjuſtly, nor accepteth the perſon of the wicked, but that with him you may deliver the Poor and Fatherleſs, and Judge the cauſe of the Stranger, wherein they are oppreſſed, that's his Kingdom, and that's the Word of Faith and the Word of Righteouſneſs that leads to it.

And if this be ſet up in your own hearts to love it more then gifts and rewards, perſons or earthly glory, then is the Lord near you, and his Kingdom is above the earth in you, and your work will be to ſet it above the earth in others, and ſo the Kingdom of your Father who begets this in your hearts his Kingdom comes, as his Will is done upon earth as it is in Heaven, where all obey him, there is the Kingdom his, the Power is his by which you Judge, and the glory is his of your Righteous Judgement, now and for ever if you therein abide; And thus ſhall you be of the obedient Children to that of your Father in you begotten, who ſay and do, who pray and practiſe, and not like the Scribes and Phariſees and39 Lawyers, who ſaid and did not, who made long prayers but devoured the poor and needy, and Judged not the cauſe of the ſtranger, but laid heavy burthens upon others, and bowed not thereto themſelves, who could not believe in the light, nor receive Chriſt within them, though he told them the King­dom of God was within them, and his Word had no place in them, who was filled with pride and wilfulneſs; ſo they had loſt the Key of knowledge, the Key of David, to open to them the way into annointing, whereby to know Davids Lord to reign in Spirit, which hath the Promiſe of Davids Throne for ever; So when they loſt this the Kingdom de­parted from Iſrael, and the Prieſthood alſo; and he ſet up his ſign to the Gentiles, preaching the Kingdom of God to them that were afar off, and they that were not a people came to the Kingdom of his annointing, and that great Myſtery that had been hid from ages was opened thereby to the Gentiles, which was Chriſt in them the Hope of Glory, and Kingdom of the Father.

And now you that are called Chriſtians, and are making great Declarations, what a glorious Kingdom the Kingdom of Chriſt will be at his coming, and what holineſs and righteous Government, and many high things and great glory you look for, &c. But above all the reſt how are you eſtranged, who are gone out again from the annointing to look for this without you, while you reject it within you? Was Chriſt within them that great Myſtery that had been hid from ages, which by the hearing of Faith was opened to the Gentiles, and was the Hope of Glory to them (even Chriſt within them, whom the Apoſtles preached, warning every man and teaching every man that they might preſent every one perfect in Chriſt Jeſus, the Hope of Glory within them, which Faith the Jews not receiving, loſt their King and Kingdom?) And is your hopes without you, as the Jews was? Is that the Hope the Apoſtles preached to the Gentiles, or that which enters within the vail? Is there not a vail drawn over your hearts again, whilſt you read this in Scriptures? And have not you loſt the Key of knowledge, who are gone out from the annointing in your hopes? Have you not loſt the Key of David, which ſhould40 let you ſee Davids Lord, in which the Kingdom of God is e­ſtabliſhed for ever? Did God ſwear this to David after the fleſh, or to Abraham after the fleſh, or to any after the fleſh? Then how is his Kingdom everlaſting? Or why did he ſay the fleſh profits nothing? And why did the Apoſtle ſay, they deſired henceforth to know no man after the fleſh, no not Chriſt himſelf? Fleſh and blood paſſeth away, but this King­dom is everlaſting; ſo him whom the Apoſtles preached in Spirit by the receiving of the Holy Ghoſt, wherein they were to grow up to his age and ſtature and appearance, him you reject in ſpirit to be the hope of your glory and kingdom, and wait for a Government after the fleſh, and ſo ſhut up the great Myſtery of godlineſs which was opened, and the King­dom againſt your ſelves, which Myſtery is not after the fleſh, but God manifeſt in fleſh, Chriſt within the Hope of Glory, and this Myſtery was ever ſhut with carnal expectations, but opened in the Spirit, as it was ſo it is, who denies the Spirit to be Lord ſhuts up the Kingdom.

Wherefore ariſe out of the fleſh you Rulers and People and receive your King, long hath he been rejected and thruſt out of the Throne of Judgement, for which you have no Peace nor Eſtabliſhment; Why will you not turn to him who calls you in Spirit, what a ſhame is this that you are called Chriſtians, and know not your annointing Chriſt in you? What Chriſtians and without Chriſt, Chriſt not come? What do you Rule withal, and diſcern with, and Judge with? Is not all that reprobate who knows not Chriſt in you? But if you know a Juſt, a Holy, a Righteous Principle of Spirit in you that is of Chriſt, ſet it up and you ſet up Chriſt, bow to the Holy Ghoſt and you worſhip in Spirit, and thereby you ſhall ſay that Jeſus is Lord, ſet up his light in your hearts and his day will ariſe to you all, for there muſt the day dawn and the day-ſtar ariſe in your hearts, which will give the know­ledge of God near you, and true Judgement near you, and that which Rules over ſpiritual wickedneſs near you, which all muſt bow to who receives the Kingdom of God, honour God in your hearts, ſet him up in your hearts, let him be Judge in your hearts, and firſt receive his Light and Judge­ment41 there, before you paſs Judgement upon others, leaſt you in judging others before men condemn your ſelves before God; David had little thought he had done that, when he ſaid, he that had taken his neighbours lamb ſhould ſurely dye; and you may ſoon do the like if you go out from the Spirit and Judge before you receive Judgement in your own hearts, and ſee all be clean there firſt, then is your Scepter eſtabliſhed in Righteouſneſs, and your Judgement in Truth, which is the Scepter of the Throne of David in Spirit, which con­demned David in fleſh, and will condemn you in the fleſh if you ſin againſt it; and that is his Kingdom, and he is King for ever, who in Spirit condemns ſin in the fleſh, and for this end is he manifeſt, that the Righteouſneſs of the Law may be ful­filled in all who walk not after the fleſh but after the Spirit, which comes in his Name who went away after the fleſh, that the kingdom might come. And if you receive your Authority and Judgement in this right Principle of God, it will Judge for God in all, your ſelves and others, and it will fit you to be Mediators betwixt the Offender and Sufferer in all, and you will ſee what it is which tranſgreſſeth and what is tranſgreſ­ſed, and the nature of every offence to paſs an equal Judge­ment accordingly, and this is of God and he loves it, and where that of God is preſſed not to clear the oppreſſor, but to Judge the oppreſſor, and ſet that of God which is innocent free; and here with that of God in your ſelves you Judge for that of God in all, and ſet that of God above the oppreſſor in all, which oppreſſor is not of God in you nor in others, but is to be Judged, and for the Law and for the Sword, but a­gainſt that of God the Law is not; And here is Gods King­dom already near and not afar off, where God is all in all, and the Righteous reigns, and the power that is ordained of God, the Soul is ſubject to for Conſcience ſake towards God in Hea­ven and Earth; and that of God in every Conſcience ſhall anſwer to your Judgement and Authority, and God ſhall ſet you up therewith as a terrour in every heart above the evil­doer, the murtherer and traytor, and the arrows of the Al­mighty ſhall ſtick in the hearts of all that ſeek to undermine this Government, for the Kingdom of God it is, in which he42 Rules, who cannot forget himſelf, nor hath this Kingdome been taken from any who once received it thus, till they go out of it themſelves, by ſuffering or ſetting up another to rule above that meaſure of this Juſt and Innocent Princi­ple of God.

And if you receive this Kingdom from Heaven in love of it, then ſhall you receive your Judgement from Heaven alſo, and your Law to Judge by, and God ſhall make you rich towards him in Righteous Judgement, and towards his People, and a diſcerning Spirit will he give you in this Annointing to know hard matters that are hid from fleſh and blood, which you ſhall receive in ſecret and bring forth openly, and all ſhall hear and fear, and praiſe the Lord for you; and you ſhall no more go to the Heathen to learn Judgement whom the Lord hath removed far from him, nor ſhall you uphold thoſe Laws by which the ſervants of God hath ſuffered formerly in the times of Popery, nor ſhall the Statutes of Omri be kept and obſerved, nor follow the wayes of the houſe of Jeroboam, for you have ſeen what God hath done concerning them, that you may fear to follow them; But you ſhall have your Laws from the Law-giver Chriſt Jeſus, and your Judgement from the Fa­ther of Lights, whoſe Miniſters then you are, to whoſe ſword that of God in every Conſcience ſhall anſwer, which is writ­ten in every heart, and which every heart ſhall fear to offend, when they hear that the Lord hath raiſed him up Judges as at the firſt, and Counſellors as at the beginning, and the Hea­then ſhall hear and fear, and come to you to learn Judgement, and Righteouſneſs ſhall ariſe from amongſt you to the ends of the earth, & the break of Gods day ſhall be with you firſt, as to you it is firſt tendred if you be not found unworthy to receive him, and he ſhall make you as a head in Counſel, and the firſt born of all Nations unto God ſhall you be if you receive him, wherein the bleſſing of God is bound up by an oath, and his ſtrength upon earth to all generations.

And this is the love of God to you all once more, The Ru­lers of theſe Nations, from the higheſt to the loweſt, that love might open your hearts that the earth hath ſhut and ſealed, that you might come to a feeling of your everlaſting43 eſtabliſhment, and that your fears may ceaſe in an endleſſe union betwixt Chriſt your King and your own Souls, to the dread of all your enemies, and eternal praiſes lift up to him, indeed, who hath ſcattered your enemies many a time for you, and all their dark Plots brought to light, that you may love the light wherein is your Salvation, and not Plot in dark­neſs againſt his innocent ones, as your enemies do, but with hearts open and naked receive the truth, which condemns all the deeds of darkneſs in you and in them, leaſt he bring your Plots and ſecret Counſels againſt the innocent upon your heads, as he hath often done to your enemies, for he will a­venge the poor, though long he ſuffer with them and in them; and this is now ſeen concerning you, as was formerly ſeen concerning them, of which they were warned in words, and witneſſed againſt in ſufferings long before it came, who are now broken as a Potters veſſel, and cannot be made whole, but what ever they do, breaks them more; And now are you warned and invited in love, who ſees before you this day what God hath done concerning them, and ſuffered concern­ing you.

And I am bold in the love of God to ſend this to you all wherein there is a Seed of God, and I know there is that of God in you which will anſwer to the truth of this; and the Scriptures witneſs with me alſo, ſo I am not alone, but by two infallible witneſſes every word is eſtabliſhed, either to life or condemnation; and my prayers to God is and ſhall be as long as this of God in me hath breathings, that you may receive the Kingdom of God which is near you, through that ſpiritual Light and Key that opens the door of your entrance thereinto, that you may come to be eſtabliſhed in the Cove­nant of God and not of man, and that you may not reſiſt the Holy Ghoſt, as hitherto you have many of you done, nor kick againſt that which pricks you at your hearts when you are told hereof, leaſt you be broken in the end, ſo as you can never be healed, which is near at hand to be broken or eſtabliſhed, as you receive God or refuſe him, who hath long waited upon you that now are, and with much patience is he finiſhing as large a Teſtimony of his ſuffering and forbearance among44 you, as ever was ſince the world began, though it be little ſeen where the light is rejected, which the longing of my Soul is, may be for the leading to Repentance, that you may be eſtabliſhed after all this ſhakings in that which cannot be ſhaken, otherwiſe the moſt miſerable Wo that ever was will come upon you, your Profeſſion of Chriſt being the greateſt that ever was ſince the beginning; And his Oppreſſion anſwer­able, under which he ſuffers in all places of the Nations for a teſtimony that the Kingdom is near you, whether you will receive him or refuſe him, whoſe life in meaſure is now mani­feſt in mortal fleſh, and the light thereof ariſeth in every Conſcience to lead or condemne.

A Candle lighted, to give the ſight of the good Old Way of God at his coming from the wayes that now enſnares the ſimple.

A Voice in the Wilderneſs cryes aloud to all you who are talking of the Lords coming, prepare his way, make his paths ſtrait, make way for the Juſt to come to Judgement, make him way in your ſtreets, he comes not in a Corner, nor is he kept in the ſecret Chambers, but openly in the ſtreets of your great Cities, where iniquity is committed openly, whoſe Cry hath gone up before the Lord, and he comes to ſee whe­ther it be ſo indeed as the Cry hath been; And behold here is no room for the feet of his Servants to paſſe, in whom he comes; The antient paths of Peace are broken up, the Sea hath broken its Banks, it rages and ſwells exceedingly, and the good old Wayes are grown like a wilderneſs, they are filled with heaps of Rubbiſh, ſo that the Stranger cannot paſſe who hath no habitation in the Earth, our ſtreets are be­come as Sodom which God overthrew, who can ſee and not la­ment? How are the paths of the Juſt devoured? How is Bryars and Thorns grown over the way of the Righteous, which takes hold of the upright what way ſoever he turn, if he45 come againſt ſin? So the Innocent cannot paſſe if he come in the Name of the Lord; All hath freedom but the Heir and ſuch as he ſends before his face to prepare his Way; Swearers, Liars, Drunkards, and all deceitful workers are become Free­men, have free paſſage, and every one brings forth without fear; but he that departs from Iniquity and teſtifies againſt it, is beſet about with them all, as a Sheep in the Bryars, what way ſoever he turns his bonds are increaſed. How is true Judgement driven into a corner, and wickedneſſe come into the ſtreets, which riſes up without fear againſt him that Re­proves it, for Violence hath got into the Seat of Equity, and hath framed Miſchief by a Law, and hath turned Judgement backwards.

Should not Truth have its way amongſt you Profeſſors, and righteous Judgement paſſe upon its Enemies where they are found, and plead its own Cauſe againſt Iniquity? But he that letteth ſtands in the way with his Weapons to devour him that is more Righteous then himſelf, and no man is able to reſtore to the upright his path, Or can he redeem his own way but through bloud? Shall he condemne Iniquity and not be a prey? Or ſhall he reprove ſin in the Gate, and not be taken in their Dragg? And when the Innocent is caught in this Net, to whom ſhall he cry for Relief and not encreaſe his bonds? Or who will plead his innocent Cauſe and not betray him? If he would Appeal to Juſtice, he cannot come at it, nor doth Judgement ſit in the Gate; Is there help in the Houſe of the King, or will the Houſe of the Prieſt plead his Right? Or to whom may he commit himſelf with ſafety whoſe life and Faith is held in a pure Conſcience? Or in what Court can he appear without offence? Are not Snares laid in lower places, and on the Mountains a Net ſpread? And do not theſe daily catch men? Search if there be a man left that is valiant for Truth upon Earth, who for fear or fa­vour will not winke at Oppreſſion, or that dare faithfully ſtand bhim that comes in the Name of the Lord to reprove ſin openly, who is he that hath not laid Riches, or Honour, or ſome piece of Earth in his own way to ſtop his feet from the path of uprightneſs, and ſo is every mans Arm become46 too ſhort to relieve the Oppreſſed, or to open the way where­in the Innocent may ſerve his Maker without fear? Or the Juſt to proclaim the Holineſs of God without danger, in the way that God ſhall chuſe, and not man; Or for Judgement to come forth into the open places where wickedneſs is moſt acted; Or for the lively witneſs of the Lamb to ariſe againſt his Enemy in the good old Way that he hath choſen to all Generations?

Ah! How is the Antient paths forſaken of men? How have you left the good old Way of God, and choſen wayes of your own againſt your own ſouls? How long will it be ere you try your wayes with the truth that you may return to him who is come to require the paths of Judgement and Righ­teouſneſs and Truth, that the meek may poſſeſſe his Inheri­tance of old, and that God may walk in his own ſeed as he hath ſaid, I will dwell in them and walk in them, who comes as the lightning.

Behold you who are crying againſt new Wayes, you ſay it was never well ſince there is ſo many new wayes, you are the men and your wayes are the thing you complain of, and why there is ſo many of your wayes is becauſe Babel is confounded, and many Heads and Horns are lifted up to fulfill that number as is written of them to withſtand the way of the Lamb, and to fight againſt Gods appearance in his heritage; who all are ſet againſt the way of God as at this day, which is but one to all Generations; was not this his way of Old which is now re­jected, and which is become ſo odious in your eyes? Was not this of Old the pure path which you now ſay breaks your Peace? Search the Scriptures which teſtifie of God and his way in his Servants of Old, and how he then paſſed in his re­deemed ones, choſen veſſels for himſelf, to make his power known againſt oppoſers, as you may read in Scriptures, trace the ſteps of his Servants in whom he walked, and ſee how far you have erred at this day.

Was not this his way in Jeremiah, who led him into the Gates of Jeruſalem, and through the ſtreets thereof, through him declaring againſt ſin there abounding, and to pronounce Judgement to follow; did not he lead him into their Temple,47 and therein told them who went ehither to worſhip that they truſted in a Lye, who cryed the Temple of the Lord, but had made it a Den of Thieves by their wicked wayes? Did not he lead him down to the Houſe of the King, and there told him, That if he would not amend his wayes his Houſe ſhould be­come a deſolation? And which of the falſe Prophets did he not Reprove openly by him? Was not this his Way then? And what became of them that would have ſtopt him? Did not he ſpeak words in Amos againſt the Wickedneſs of their King, Prieſts and Worſhips, that the Land was not able to bear? Did not he lead Jonah through the ſtreets of Nineveh? And in which of the Prophets did not he thus walk in, and ſome received him in his way, and turned from their own wayes and found Mercy, and the reſt that rejected him was deſtroyed in their own wayes in which they bleſſed themſelves as at this day? Now read theſe, and read what you now op­poſe in your Streets and Steeple-houſes, and Markets, and let that of God in you be judge if you be not of ſuch as now ſay, Depart from us we will have none of thy wayes? Alſo ſearch your Goſpel if you can receive his way therein which changes not, Did not he come in Chriſt, and in his Apoſtles as a wanderer to and fro, without a certain dwelling place, to Preach Repentance and amendment of life, and the light of the world, from City to Village, from place to place, which way you now call Vagabonds? And did not he enter their Temples and Synagogues, Schools and Markets, and all their Places of Worſhip and Concourſe where Sin or falſe Worſhip was acted, and there Diſputed and teſtified againſt their whole way, and called them to the way of God, and this was his manner of walking in them, even in times of their Worſhips, and in the greateſt Aſſembly of Meetings & Markets, which to you is become as Gall and Wormwood, and you call it Di­ſturbance and Peace-breaking.

Was not this his way in ſuch as knew