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rebellion; his covert leaguing with the rebels against us; his refusing, more than seven times, propositions most just and necessary to the true religion and our liberties, tendered him by the parliament both of England and Scotland. They made not their covenant concerning him with no difference between a king and a God; or promised him as Job did to the Almighty, to trust in him though he slay us.' They understood that the solemn engagement, wherein we all forswore kingship, was no more a breach of the covenant, than the covenant was of the protestation before, but a faithful and prudent going on both in words well weighed, and in the true sense of the covenant, without respect of persons,' when we could not serve two contrary masters, God, and the king, or the king and that more supreme law, sworn in the first place to maintain our safety and our liberty. They knew the people of England to be a free people, themselves the representers of that freedom; and although many were excluded, and as many fled, so they pretended, from tumults to Oxford, yet they were left a sufficient number to act in parliament, therefore not bound by any statute of preceding parliaments, but by the law of nature only, which is the only law of laws truly and properly to all mankind fundamental; the beginning and the end of all government; to which no parliament or people that will thoroughly reform, but may and must have recourse, as they had, and must yet have, in church reformation, if they thoroughly intend it, to evangelic rules, not to ecclesiastical canons, though never so ancient, so ratified and established in the land by statutes, which for the most part are mere positive laws, neither natural nor moral, and so by any parliament, for just and serious considerations, without scruple to be at any time repealed.

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If others of their number in these things were un der force, they were not, but under free conscience; if others were excluded by a power which they could not resist, they were not therefore to leave the helm of government in no hands, to discontinue their care of the public peace and safety, to desert the people in anarchy and confusion, no more than when so many of their members left them, as made up in outward formality a more legal parliament of three estates against them. The best affected also, and best principled of the people, stood not numbering or computing, on which side were most voices in parliament, but on which side appeared to them most reason, most safety, when the house divided upon main matters; what was well motioned and advised, they examined not whether fear or persuasion carried it in the vote, neither did they measure votes and counsels by the intentions of them that voted; knowing that intentions either are but guessed at, or not soon enough known; and although good, can neither make the deed such, nor prevent the consequence from being bad. Suppose bad intentions in things otherwise well done; what was well done, was by them who so thought not the less obeyed or followed in the state; since in the church, who had not rather follow Iscariot or Simon the magician, though to covetous ends, preaching, than Saul, though in the uprightness of his heart, persecuting the gospel?

Safer they therefore judged what they thought the better counsels, though carried on by some, perhaps, to bad ends, than the worse by others, though endeavoured with best intentions; and yet they were not to learn that a greater number might be corrupt within the walls of a parliament, as well as of a city; whereof in matters of nearest concernment all men will be judges; nor easily permit that the odds of voices in

their greatest council, shall more endanger them by corrupt or credulous votes, than the odds of enemies by open assaults; judging that most voices ought not always to prevail where main matters are in question.

If others hence will pretend to disturb all counsels, what is that to them who pretend not, but are in real danger? not they only so judging, but a great, though not the greatest number of their chosen patriots, who might be more in weight than the others in number; there being in number little virtue, but by weight and measure wisdom working all things, and the dangers on either side they seriously thus weighed. From the treaty, short fruits of long labors, and seven years' war; security for twenty years, if we can hold it; reformation in the church for three years; then put to shift again with our vanquished master. His justice, his honor, his conscience declared quite contrary to ours; which would have furnished him with many such evasions, as in a book entitled, 'An Inquisition for Blood,' soon after were not concealed; bishops not totally removed, but left, as it were, in ambush, a reserve, with ordination in their sole power; their lands already sold, not to be alienated, but rented, and the sale of them called 'sacrilege;' delinquents, few of many, brought to condign punishment; accessories punished; the chief author, above pardon, though after utmost resistance, vanquished; not to give, but to receive laws; yet besought, treated with, and to be thanked for his gracious concessions, to be honored, worshipped, glorified. If this we swore to do, with what righteousness in the sight of God, with what assurance that we bring not, by such an oath, the whole sea of blood guiltiness upon our heads? If on the other side we prefer a free government, though for the present not obtained, yet all those suggested fears and difficulties, as the event will prove,

easily overcome, we remain finally secure from the exasperated regal power, and out of snares; shall retain the best part of our liberty, which is our religion, and the civil part will be from these who defer us, much more easily recovered, being neither so subtle nor so awful as a king reinthroned.

Nor were their actions less, both at home and abroad, than might become the hopes of a glorious rising commonwea'th; nor were the expressions both of army and people, whether in their public declarations, or several writings, other than such as testified a spirit in this nation, no less noble and well fitted to the liberty of a commonwealth, than in the ancient Greeks or Romans. Nor was the heroic cause unsuccessfully defended to all Christendom, against the tongue of a famous, and thought invincible adversary; nor the constancy and fortitude that so nobly vindicated our liberty, our victory at once against two the most prevailing usurpers over mankind, superstition and tyranny, unpraised or uncelebrated in a written monument, likely to outlive detraction, as it hath hitherto convinced or silenced not a few of our detractors, especially in parts abroad.

After our liberty and religion thus prosperously fought for, gained, and many years possessed, except in those unhappy interruptions, which God hath removed, now that nothing remains, but in all reason the certain hopes of a speedy and immediate settlement forever in a firm and free commonwealth; for this extolled and magnified nation, regardless both of honor won, or deliverances vouchsafed from heaven, to fall back, or rather to creep back so poorly, as it seems the multitude would, to their once abjured and detested thraldom of kingship; to be ourselves the slanderers of our own just and religious deeds, though done by some to covetous and ambitious ends, yet not therefore to be stained with their infamy, or they to asperse

the integrity of others; and yet these now by revolting from the conscience of deeds well done, both in church and state, to throw away and forsake, or rather to betray a just and noble cause for the mixture of bad men who have ill managed and abused it, (which had our fathers done heretofore, and on the same pretence deserted true religion, what had long ere this become of our gospel and all protestant reformation so much intermixed with the avarice and ambition of some reformers?) and by thus relapsing, to verify all the bitter predictions of our triumphing enemies, who will now think they wisely discerned and justly censured both us and all our actions as rash, rebellious, hypocritical, and impious; not only argues a strange degenerate contagion suddenly spread among us, fitted and prepared for new slavery, but will render us a scorn and derision to all our neighbours.

And what will they at best say of us, and of the whole English name, but scoffingly, as of that foolish builder mentioned by our Saviour, who began to build a tower, and was not able to finish it? Where is this goodly tower of a commonwealth, which the English boasted they would build to overshadow kings, and be another Rome in the west? The foundation indeed they laid gallantly, but fell into a worse confusion, not of tongues, but of factions, than those at the tower of Babel, and have left no memorial of their work behind them remaining, but in the common laughter of Europe! Which must needs redound the more to our shame, if we but look on our neighbours, the United Provinces, to us inferior in all outward advantages, who, notwithstanding, in the midst of greater difficulties, courageously, wisely, constantly went through with the same work, and are settled in all the happy enjoyments of a potent and flourishing republic to this day.

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