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even unto this very day, devised nothing but how to delude and beggar. us all, and how to keep war on foot; else why accepted you not those many fair offers of a gracious King, but still, as you got more power, incroached both upon him and us? Why send you not for him home, but still delay us? It is not far to him. We will study a way henceforth to ease ourselves of such magistrates, such sheep-clad wolves. It is not your going back to the articles presented at Hampton-Court shall now make your atonement with us; you never took a way yet to make him a glorious King, or to reform, but deform religion; or to settle us under our ancient laws, or in our native liberties. Had you power, we know your minds; we give you no thanks for your pretending to settle presbytery, since you wanted power to hinder it; nor for your late ordinance against hereticks. Put on your considering caps somewhat closer to your cocks-combs, aud see now if you can re-ingratiate yourselves with our city: see if it will thank you to transfer its militia and Tower (out of these in whose they now be) into other Independents hands, and yet you did not that till very now: see if you can engage your brethren in the city, and us in a new war, and we shall observe who be ready in the same: see if you can or dare force us presbyterians, or our apprentices, to accompany you, and they shall carry away your weapons, and join with our friends your enemies. You must no more look to force or mugle men with the name of a parliament, being but a prevailing party, and fill your coffers by deceit: we witl believe you no further; nor Fairfax, though he goes again to hear the lord primate preach at the temple, or proclaim for King, or King and parliament. Carry you the King captived along with you which way ever you go ; as strictly as you have watched him, he hath given the prince power to contract for him; we are got before-hand with you in that: counterfeit his seal, and make what proclamations you will hereafter in his name, none will believe you. We have been told the ends of your laying open Rochester: but, if our brethren of the association cannot get into a readiness to stop your passage, the power of three kingdoms shall shortly follow you.
We heard of your late designs against our city, before we took notice of them, and we hear your intentions are to proceed, and to draw up both horse and foot to atchieve the same. I saw some of their leaders here the other day, and their men not far off; it is not denying and seeming to over-run your said designs, that shall make us negligent of our own safety: if ye knew not thereof, why do ye (to obstruct discoveries) refer the examination to men accused, viz. Ireton? How can you daub over this? Or why (if you set not on Fairfax in August last against our city) did ye go from the houses to him And why did ye not since vote him a traitor, as ye did the Lord Inchiquin? my brethren, look over diurnals, and ye shall see him ever acting in relation to the houses. Our brethren of Essex came but peaceably with a petition, and this prevailing party derides them gone, calling them Essex calves; but, thanks to sate, yet delays, that, if they can quiet them a while, they may after make them the spoil of the Independent army they declare against. Look to it, gentlemen, disperse not yourselves till ye see it disbanded, and the King settled,
Ye must ever have some cloke for your knavery. When your late design against our city grew ripe, your mayor (a very horse and a traitor to our city, as many others of the common-council and captains are) must quarrel with the boys at their recreations, that ye might get another colour to draw your army again upon the city, and do that which then ye durst not, get down our chains, that, when the time of your necessity came, ye might disarm us, command our purses, and force us and our servants, against our consciences, though now again ye are forced to pull in your horns: and bring ye up your country soldiers, as we hear ye have, we shall make you aking hearts e're ye obtain your wills. Ye are loth to leave us, but, since we know your good-will, we shall look to you as we can: we trust our brethren of the association will be ready to assist us. We have heard now of your private compliance with Irish natives, and your letters lately taken at sea, wherein ye promise liberty of conscience, and many immunities, if they will let you alone. hus have I given you a little sight of the Babylonian Bel-like idol, a brazen parliament, and of the collusion and veracity of the idol attendants, this prevailing party of both houses, who have so long deluded you with devices, and, like Bel's priests, wasted upon themselves and theirs, those vast contributions and levies which should have been expended on the publick service; and do desire, now time is like to serve for it, ye would endeavour your own freedom from the yoke of these men. God save the King and kingdom.
Concerning ministers meddling with state matters in their sermons: and how far they are obliged by the covenant to interpose in the affairs of civil government. By J. D. minister of the gospel. March 15, Imprimatur, Joseph Caryl.
London, printed by R. L. for R. W. 1649. Quarto, containing thirty pages.
The good intention of this pamphlet, and the masterly way of reasoning with which it is composed, and, in particular, the too often necessity to declaim against that cacochemy of the popular preachers, or court-flatterers, recommend it to the curious; and, as it is most scarce, a few of them only having escaped the injuries of time, after tnost of the impression had been seized and destroyed by the faction
which so lately had been guilty of preaching the King to death, I have recommitted it to the press, as a good monitor, both in correction and instruction, to the preachers of God's word, that they may not prostitute their function or office, either for or against a court; and to the hearers, that they may not applaud, nor be deceived by those, whose sermons, instead of teaching them the way of godliness, are calculated to find out the high way to preferment for their teachers, who have changed their characters, by leaving the service of God, and becoming the servants of the state.
You have desired to know of me the reasons why I make it a scrue ple of conscience, to do as others on all sides have done hitherto,
viz. to intermeddle with matters of state in my sermons? I shall briefly let you know the grounds of my scruple concerning this matter, and, leaving them to your conscionable consideration, suggest some impartial thoughts, which, perhaps, may ease you of the scruples, which you have on the other hand; for which, you think it either unlawful for you, or unexpedient for your flock, to leave intermeddling in those matters.
Let us first agree what we mean by matters of state.
As for myself, I conceive, state-matters to be all manner of counsels, designs, endeavours, and actings, which are undertaken or prosecuted, by those that manage with power, or authority, publick affairs; relating to the outward possessions, rights, freedoms, privileges, prerogatives, and persons of men, as they are members of an outward commonwealth, or worldly kingdom. Concerning which matters, I think it not at all lawful for me to interpose my judgment in the pulpit, or to intermeddle towards the people, farther than the apostle hath commanded, Rom. xiii. 1,–8. and 1 Tim. ii. 2. and Tit. iii. 1. And the reasons, why I conceive it not lawful so to do, are these:
First, I know no law, either of God or man, obliging me to meddle with such matters, by interposing my judgment concerning them in the pulpit: and if no law either expresly commanding, or by a good inference warranting this intermeddling, can be shewed, I understand not how it can be counted lawful for any so to do.
Secondly, I find a law both of God and man, forbidding me to judge of matters, which belong not unto me, or which particularly concern other men.
The law of God is this: ‘Be not busy in other men's affairs, 1 Pet. iv. 15. And what have I to do to judge them that are without? I Cor. v. 12. And who art thou that judgest another man's servant? to his own master he standeth or falleth, Rom. xiv. 4. And judge not, that ye be not judged, Matt. vii. 1. Now, when I reflect upon myself, in refer: ence unto these laws, my conscience doth tell me, that I am not called to manage the affairs of state, but that they belong to other men; and, therefore, that I ought not to be busy in them, and trouble my head about them. And, if I judge the magistrate's employment (as a civil magistrate) to be without the church, I have scarce so much: sure I am, no more right than the apostle Paul had to judge of them. Now he tells us, that he had nothing to do to judge them, but that the judgment of those, that are without the church, God hath reserved unto himself, 1 Cor. v. 13. therefore it doth not appertain to me to
meddle with them. But if, as a Christian magistrate, I take him to be
within the church; yet his employment, quatenus", a magistrate, is
blame their t proceedings in publick, before the multitude, directly or
indirectly, is manifestly to dishonour them; and, if this is unlawful in
* As, or, so far as. + Ou natural parents.
mend or condemn them in the pulpit. For Christ being intreated, Luke xii. 13, to employ his authority, to cause one brother to divide the inheritance with the other, did refuse to do it, upon this ground, because God had not appointed him a judge, or a divider over men in temporal matters. The disciple is not above the master; and, if the master had no right to meddle in small matters, between man and man, what right have I to meddle in the greatest, between state and state, or rulers and subjects When Christ called one of his disciples to him, and he desired leave, first, to go and bury his father, Christ bid him, let the dead bury their dead; but go thou, (saith he) and preach the kingdom of God, Matt. viii, 21, 22. and Luke ix. 60. If then those, that are called to preach the kingdom of God, ought to free their minds from the cares, which, through natural affection, and a kind of civil duty, so nearly concern themselves and their kindred, how much more ought they to be disinterested in matters of state, which at all do not concern them The cares of a quite contrary nature cannot be at once rightly entertained in the same mind; they are like two opposite masters, whom none can serve at the same time acceptably, nor at different times faithfully; therefore, he that will be Christ's servant, and a faithful soldier in his warfare, must not be intangled in the affairs of this life, otherwise he will not be able to please him, who hath chosen him to be a soldier, 2 Tim. ii. 4. Now all the affairs of state concern only this life, and nothing else directly and principally. Fourthly, The intermeddling with state-matters in sermons is contrary to the rule of preaching, and to the true aim, which ought to be maintained in the performance of that duty. The rule of preaching is, If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God, 1 Pet. iv. 11. We are warranted to speak nothing (if we speak in God's name) but that which is undeniably his word. Nothing can beget faith, and build up the soul unto godliness, but the truth of God; if we speak other matters, which the wisdom of earthly men, or our own imaginations, or passions, dictate, we profane the ordinance of God, and destroy the faith of the hearers. What is the chaff to the wheat? saith the Lord, by the prophet Jeremiah, Jer. xxiii. 28. Our own words and dreams, about temporal concernments, are less worth than chaff, and the faith of professors cannot stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God. And because Jesus Christ is the wisdom of God, and the power of God, therefore, in our preaching, we should determine to know nothing amongst our hearers, but Jesus Christ and him crucified, 1 Cor. ii. 5. The aim, to be maintained in preaching, is to persuade God only, and not men; and not to please men, or become their servants, but God's alone, Gal. i. 10. for he, that intendeth to please men, is no more the servant of Christ, 1 Cor. ii. 2. Now, when men set themselves to speak of state-matters in the pulpit, their aim is, either to please the magistrates, by commending them to the people, or to shew their dislike against their proceedings, by reproving the same, which doth tend to make the people displeased with their magistrates. Now, whether the design be the one, or the other, it is altogether unworthy