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Be not negligent in your men's meetings to admonish, to exhort, and reprove in the spirit of love and of meekness; to seek that which is lost, and to bring back again that which hath been driven away. So, let all minds and spirits, souls and hearts, be bended down under the yoke of Christ Jesus, the power of God.
“Much I could write, but am weak, and have been mostly since I left you. Burthens and travails I have been under, and gone through many ways; but it is well. The Lord Almighty knows my work, which he hath sent me forth to do by his everlasting arm and power; which is from everlasting to everlasting. Blessed be his holy name, which I am in, and in which my love is to you all.”
After I was able to go about, and had been a little amongst Friends, I went to visit the governor ; Lewis Morice, Thomas Rous, and some other Friends being with me. He received us very civilly, and treated us very kindly, making us dine with him; and keeping us most part of the day before he let us go away.
The same week I went to BRIDGE-TOWN. There was to be a general meeting of Friends that week; and the visit I had , made to the governor, and the kind reception I had with him, being generally known to the officers, civil and military, many came to this meeting from most parts of the island, and those not of the meanest rank; several being judges or justices, colonels or captains; so that a very great meeting we had, both of Friends and others. The Lord's blessed power was plentifully with us; and although I was somewhat straightened for time, three other Friends having spoken before me, yet the Lord opened things through me to the general and great satisfaction of them that were present. Colonel Lewis Morice came to this meeting, and with him a neighbour of his, a judge in the country, whose name was Ralph Fretwell, who was very well satisfied, and received the truth.
Paul Gwin, a jangling Baptist, came into the meeting, and asked me, “How I spelt Cain? and whether I had the same spirit as the apostles had ? ” I told him, “Yes.” And he bade the judge take notice of it. I told him, “He that had not a measure of the same Holy Ghost as the apostles had, was possessed with an unclean spirit.” And then he went his way.
I went home with Lewis Morice that night, being about nine or ten miles, going part of the way by boat, the rest on horseback. The place where his plantation was, I thought to be in the finest air of the island. The next day Thomas Briggs and William Edmundson came to see me, intending to leave the island the day following, to go on the Lord's service to Antigua and Nevis. Lewis Morice went with them; at Antigua they had several good meetings, to which there was a great resort of people; and many were convinced. But when they went to Nevis, the governor, an old persecutor, sent soldiers on board the vessel, to stop them, and would not suffer them to land. Wherefore, after Friends of the place had been on board the vessel with them, and they had been sweetly refreshed together, feeling the Lord's power and presence amongst them, they
returned to Antigua; where having stayed a while longer, they came back again to Bardadoes, Thomas Briggs being weak and ill.
Of the other Friends that came over with me from England, James Lancaster, John Cartwright, and George Pattison, were gone some time before to Jamaica, and others to other places, so that few remained in Barbadoes with me. We had many great and precious meetings, both for worship and for the affairs of the church; to the former of which many of other societies came. At one of these meetings Colonel Lyne, a sober person, was so well satisfied with what I declared, that he said, “Now I cau gainsay such as I have heard speak evil of you; who say, you do not own Christ, nor that he died; whereas I perceive you exalt Christ in all his offices beyond what I have ever heard before." * This man, observing a person take in writing the heads of what I delivered, desired to have a copy of it; and stayed another day with us; so great a love was raised in him to the truth. Indeed a very great convincement there was in most parts of the island; which made the priests and professors rage. Our meetings were very large, and free from disturbance from the government, though the envious priests and some professors endeavoured to stir up the magistrates against us. When they found they could not prevail that way, some Baptists came to the meeting at the town, which was full of people of several ranks and qualities. A great company came with them; and they brought a slanderous paper, written by.John Pennyman, with which they made a great noise. But the Lord gave me wisdom and utterance to answer their cavils; so that the auditory generally received satisfaction, and those quarrelsome professors lost ground. When they had wearied themselves with clamour, they went away; but the people staying, the meeting was continued; the things they cavilled about were further opened and cleared; and the life and power of God came over all. But the rage and envy in our adversaries did not cease; they endeavoured to defame Friends with many false and scandalous reports, which they spread abroad through the island. Whereupon we drew up a paper, to go forth in the
* The faith of the early Friends in the divinity and offices of our Saviour being called in question by some, they boldly resented such an inference. From a work published by Samuel Crisp, in 1704, take the following extracts :
“Our faith is, and always has been in that Christ, the Son of God, who, according to the flesh, was crucified without the gates of Jerusalem : He is the object of our faith, to the merit of whose death and passion, with the work of his Spirit in our hearts, we trust only for life and salvation; with his stripes we are healed.”
"As to what he (a libeller) says of our forcing ourselves to speak with a seeming reverence and respect of the outward Christ, his death and sufferings, I would hope that he knows better in his own conscience than thus to represent us. We bear a true reverence and respect to Jesus Christ, his death and sufferings, and can never be sufficiently thankful to him who was pleased to humble himself to death, even the death of the cross; that all that believe in him might, through the cross, be made heirs of life and immortality.”
For further elucidation of the soundness of the early Friends in their belief as to the divinity and offices of Christ, see Evans' Exposition of the Faith of the Society of Friends, especially John Banks' “ Testimony concerning his faith in Christ,” and an "Essay drawn up by Johu Burnycat and John Watson in 1688,"contained in the above-inentioned work,
name of the people called Quakers, for the clearing of truth and Friends from those false reports. It was directed thus:“ For the Governor of Barbadoes, with his Council and Assembly, and all
others in power, both civil and military, in this Island ; from the people called Quakers.
“WHEREAS many scandalous lies and slanders have been cast upon us, to render us odious; as that "We deny God, and Christ Jesus, and the Scriptures of truth,' &c. This is to inform you, that all our books and declarations, which for these many years have been published to the world, clearly testify the contrary. Yet, for your satisfaction, we now plainly and sincerely declare, that we do own and believe in the only wise, omnipotent, and everlasting God, the Creator of all things both in heaven and in earth, and the preserver of all that he hath made; who is God over all, blessed for ever; to whom be all honour and glory, dominion, praise, and thanksgiving, both now and for evermore!'
“And we own and believe in Jesus Christ, his beloved and only begotten Son, in whom he is well pleased; who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, and born of the Virgin Mary; in whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins; who is the express image of the Invisible God, the first-born, of every creature, by whom were all things created that are in heaven, and in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, principalities, or powers, all things were created by him. And we own and believe that He was made a sacrifice for sin, who knew no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth; that he was crucified for us in the flesh, without the gates of Jerusalem; and that he was buried, and rose again the third day by the power of his Father, for our justification; and that he ascended up into heaven, and now sitteth at the right hand of God. This Jesus, who was the foundation of the holy prophets and apostles, is our foundation; and we believe that there is no other foundation to be laid than that which is laid, even Christ Jesus; who tasted death for every man, shed his blood for all men, and is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world; according as John the Baptist testified of him, when he said, *Behold the Lamb of God, that taketh away the sins of the world.' Jn. i. 29. We believe that be alone is our Redeemer and Saviour, even the Captain of our Salvation, who saves us from sin, as well as from hell, and the wrath to come, and destroys the devil and his works; he is the Seed of the woman, that bruises the serpent's head, to wit, Christ Jesus, the Alpha and Omega, the First and the Last. He is (as the Scriptures of truth say of him) our wisdom and righteousness, justification and redemption; neither is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men whereby we may be saved. He alone is the Shepherd and Bishop of our souls; He is our Prophet, whom Moses long since testified of, saying, 'A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; Him shall ye hear in all things, whatsoever he shall say unto you; and it shall come to pass, that every soul that
will not liear that prophet, shall be destroyed from among the people.' Acts üii. 22, 23.
“He it is that is now come in the Spirit, and hath given us an under. standing that we may know him that is true. He rules in our hearts by his law of love and of life, and makes us free from the law of sin and death. We have no life but by him; for he is the quickening Spirit, the second Adam, the Lord from heaven, by whose blood we are cleansed, and our consciences sprinkled from dead works to serve the living God. He is our Mediator, that makes peace and reconciliation between God offended and us offending, He being the oath of God, the new covenant of light, life, grace, and peace; the author and finisher of our faith. This Lord Jesus Christ, the heavenly Man, the Emmanuel, God with us, we all own and believe in; him whom the high-priest raged' against, and said, he had spoken blasphemy; whom the priests and the elders of the Jews took counsel together against, and put to death; the same whom Judas betrayed for thirty pieces of silver, which the priests gave him as a reward for his treason, who also gave large money to the soldiers to broach a horrible lie, namely, that his disciples came and stole him away by night, whilst they slept.' After he was risen from the dead, the history of the Acts of the Apostles sets forth, how the chief priests and elders persecuted the disciples of this Jesus, for preaching Christ and his resurrection. This, we say, is that Lord Jesus Christ, whom we own to be our life and salvation.
“Concerning the Holy Scriptures, we do believe that they were given forth by the Holy Spirit of God, through the holy men of God, who (as the Scripture itself declares, 2 Pe. i. 21.) 'spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. We believe they are to be read, believed, and fulfilled (he that fulfils them, is Christ); and they are profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, and for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works,? 2 Ti. iii. 16, and are able to make wise unto salvation, through faith in Christ Jesus.? We believe that the Holy Scriptures are the words of God; for it is said, Ex. xx. 1, ‘God spake all these words, saying,' &c., meaning the ten commandments given forth upon Mount Sinai. And in Rev. xxii. 18, saithi John, 'I testify to every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book : if any man addeth unto these, and if any, man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy (not the word), &c. So in Lu. i. 20, Because thou believest not my words. And in John v. 47; XV. 7o; xiv: 23; and xii. 47. So that we call the Holy Scriptures, as Christ and the apostles called them, and holy men of God called them, viz., the words of God.
“Anotlier slander which they have cast upon us is, 'that we teach the negroes to rebel;' a thing we utterly abhor in our hearts; the Lord knows it, who is the searcher of all hearts, and knows all things, and can testify for us, that this is a most abominable untruth. For that which we liave spoken to them is, 'to exhort and admonish them to be sober, and to fear God; to love their masters and mistresses, and to be faithful and diligent in their masters' service and business; and then their masters and
overseers would love them, and deal kindly and gently with them; also, that they should not beat their wives, nor the wives their husbands, neither should the men have many wives; that they should not steal, or be drunk, -should not commit adultery, or fornication,-should not curse, swear, lie, or give bad words to one another, or to any one else : for there is something in them that tells them, they should not practise these or any other evils. But if, notwithstanding, they should do them, then we let them know there are but two ways, the one that leads to heaven, where the righteous go; and the other that leads to hell, where the wicked and debauched, whoremongers and adulterers, murderers and liars go. To the one the Lord will say, 'Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world;' but to the other he will say, 'Depart, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels :' so 'the wicked go into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into life eternal.' Matt. XXV.
“Consider, Friends, it is no transgression for a master of a family to instruct his family himself, or for some others to do it in his behalf; but rather it is a very great duty incumbent upon them. Abraham and Joshua did so: of the first the Lord said, Gen. xviii. 19, 'I know that Abraham will command his children and his household after him; and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment, that the Lord may bring upon Abraham the things that he hath spoken of him. And the latter said, Josh. xxiv. 15, 'Choose ye this day whom ye will serve; but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.' We declare that we esteem it a duty incumbent on us to pray with and for those in and belonging to our families, and to teach, instruct, and admonish them; this being a command of the Lord, disobedience whereunto will provoke his displeasure; as may be seen, Jer. x. 25, ‘Pour out tly fury upon the heathen that know thee not, and upon the families that call not upon thy name.' Now Negroes, Tawnies, Indians, make up a very great part of the families in this island; for whom an account will be required by him who comes to judge both quick and dead, at the great day of judgment, when every one shall be rewarded according to the deeds done in the body, whether they be good or whether they be evil :' at that day, we say, of the resurrection both of the good and of the bad, of the just and of the unjust, when
the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his miglity angels, in flaming fire, taking vengeance on them that know not God, and obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power, when he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and admired in all them that believe in that day.' 2 Thess. i. 8, &c. See also 2 Pet. iii. 3, &c."
This wicked slander (of our endeavouring to make the negroes rebel) our adversaries took occasion to raise, from our having had some meetings with and amongst the negroes; for both I and other Friends had several meetings with them in several plantations, wherein we exhorted them to justice, sobriety, temperance, chastity, and piety, and to be subject to their