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of men, God seemed to turn us to destruction ; but one smiling providence said, Return, ye children of men.
Then judgment, which seemed to favour the wicked, -returned unto righteousness, and the upright in heart were glad enough, both to see it and follow it.
What made this temptation the more complicated was, the sudden spring of a copious crop of tares. We were all on a sudden swarming alive with prophets; and many, who never had one ray of light into divine revelation, saw wonders in the womb of providence; but they prophesied nothing good to the quiet of the land. God was but a little difpleased, but these helped forward the calamity. In a former reign, which stunk of popery, the two points of doctrine then in use were, passive obedience and non-relistance; but in our day, under a prince that leaveth the King of kings to reign and rule unmolested in the conscience, we have heard of two more--the rights of man, and thie majelty of a mob; and under these two heads, sinand death have reigned, till millions have lost their property, and tens of thousands have lost their lives. But Tom Paine gave the word, and great was the compariy that published it. Thousands fed to America to escape the threatened destruction; and those that tarried at home saw the salvation of God.
The touchstone of this hour of temptation always appeared to me to be this : Those who had received the spirit of French liberty in the power of Satan (which always accompanied it), soon spake as this
fpirit gave them ytterance. Nothing was to be heard but reviling the gods, speaking evil of rulers, laughing at authority, casting off all fear of God, and debasing the king; resisting the ordinance of God, and hoping for a temporal deliverance from all superiors. Surely the old ferpent cast this water oụt of his mouth like a food, to cause the bride, the Lamb's wife, to be carried away with the flood: but the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened her mouth, and received the waters of the flood; for not the broken and contrite, not the heavenly minded foul, but those that were earthly, sensual, and devilish, and only they, found; a sweetness in these bitter waters: and it is true that many died of these waters, because they were made bitter. Hence we see that neither the doctrines nor the politics of devils can work effectually in the souls of the righteous; only in them that perish. · By this hour of temptation God tried thousands that were under the oaths 'of allegiance, and not a few who had subscribed the articles of the established church, that we might see what restraint oaths and subscriptions have upon the consciences of hypocrites; and in this balance many of high degree were found to be a lie, and those of low degree vanity. But those whom the grace of God had exalted to safety, were kept by the power of God. Here was the patience and faith of the saints.
The great heat of this hour of temptation is abated; for, what with hanging, transporting, and C3
going to America, God is causing the evil spirits to pass out of the land ; and, when he hath scattered these kings from it, I hope it will be as white as the snow in Salmon. It hath been our lot to live in the age of reason, in which such numbers have lost their senses, some their souls, and many all their religion, But, for the elect's fake, the Lord hath shortened the days of this unreasonable age.
This hour of temptation was most remarkable for the conjunction that appeared in it. Every one that drank into the gall of bitterness, whether at home or abroad, were all soon cemented together in one solid bond of iniquity. Little was heard of but the corresponding societies; and, to make this league with death, and this covenant with hell, the more firm, it was ratified with the sacred oath of God. By the means of this firm compact some were emboldened to shed much innocent blood; while many, who were unfaithful both to God and mammon, crept into corners, and bid them God speed; others shouted at their victories, and some mourned at their ill fare: and by these means God brought them in heirs, and joint heirs, in the guilt of all the blood shed abroad, and of all the rebellion at home, as sure as the builders of the prophets' sepulchres shared with Cain in the blood of Abel. One woe is past, and bebold there come two woes more bereafter.
The next enemy that we shall have to overcome after these four winds upon the great sea have ended their present strife, will be of a different nature from
this. In this war between Michael and the dragon, the dragon hath appeared in his ancient hue, which is red, agreeable to his ancient character, that of a murderer from the beginning. But Satan, as well as a Frenchman, can both fawn and fight. His next appearance will not be that of a warrior, but of a fowler ; not with fire and sword, but with trap and net. We read of a certain beast that hath long made war with the saints, and who hath a great work to accoinplish in a little time; which work is, to scatter the power of the holy people, which will bring Zion to her last furnace of affliction, and antichrist to his last triumph. Dan. xii. 7. After this the Gentiles' let, and the Jews' stumbling-block, will be removed, and the hoary head of the man of fin will go down to the grave in blood, while sorrow and sighing within the walls of Zion will be heard no more. When this red dragon is destroyed, the woman with child will caft out her sorrows, and a nation shall be born at once. There is an outer court, that lies crooked with the angel's reed, which is not to be measured. Rev.xi. 1, 2. The church, which Christ hath purchased with his own blood, is called the temple of the Holy Ghost, as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them. This is God's house, let the materials of it be of what fect or party they may, Then what can the outer court be but such as compass their Maker about with lies and deceit; who draw near to him with their lips, while their hearts are far from him? To gain over these to the son of perdition is
the work which is now on the wheels; and look whichever way you will you may see it. The last blaft of God upon the continent has scattered the emigrants into all winds; and, while some of our watchmen neep, these fow tares which spring up apace; while the bastard race, which are nearest the holy place, (I mean such as have escaped the rød of God, and the forcible application of truth,) these are meeting them half way. I have always considered the leader of the Arminians a true fervant of the pope, and the son of his handmaid, I mean the whore of Babylon; yea, the model of his daubed wall came from Rome. Female classes and their leaders were taken from the nuns and their mother abbelles ; men classes and their leaders from the monks and their superiors; and the other bands, perfect or select, from the different orders of monks, friars, and nuns. And, as for the foundation article, justification by works, they all ineet and centre in this. ' And the works of supererogation, and that of sinless perfection, both amount to one and the same lie; and we know that no lie is of the truth; and, as they agree in the foundation and superstructure, sa are they cemented in one fpirit; for neither the one nor the other can endure to hear of the fovereignty of God, nor of his electing grace among the children of men. Hence we hear of little else now but confederacies and coalitions ; Arians, Socinians, Sabellians, Arminians, and those who have for some time held the truth in unrighteousness, are now all collecting