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Magistrates gave attendance. The proof against the Rioters was full: yet the honourable Jury acquitted them all!
38. This gave them fresh spirits: so they hafted home with ribbons flying, and were faluted with bells and bonfires, in one of which they burnt me and my friend in effigy. Our friends now found it more dangerous than ever to come into the town, or get to their houses. Before I left Stafford, I waited on Lord D— with Mr. Hayes, Attorney, the person who prepared the mob, and himself made the first breach in the house. I told him plain, either let Mr. Hayes rebuild the house, or we will try him for his life. He promised it should be rebuilt in such a time: and it was built accordingly. So did God deliver us out of this complicated trouble. And all the time his work prospered.
39. But what could not be done by persecution, has been done by those who brought in a new Doctrine among us. This soon checked, and has now well nigh destroyed, both the root and branch of vital Religion. They who receive this new light, not only despise and speak evil of those that begat them to God, but even deny the reality of that unspeakable blessing, which they then received. They fay, “ We were then blind, and knew nothing." Happy ignorance! Which enabled them to endure reproach, pain, want: yea, to carry their lives in their hands, counting nothing dear, but to have a conscience void of offence, towards God and towards man.
40. In August 1770, I was stationed in Bristol Circuit. Here I met with various exercises. But I was more than conqueror, and good was done in Bristol, and in several other places. Particularly at Bath, where they were obliged first to enlarge, and then to gallery the Preaching-house. In the Spring I was called to Monmouth, to open a Preaching-house, which was duly licensed. We preached with tolerable quietness ’till Sunday evening. The Churchwardens then came before me, went in, and shut the doors. Meantime the street was all in an uproar: I went on with Mrs. Hern and Miss
Fortune, (my only companions) 'till we met the mob, who opened to the right and left, and let us pass to the door. It was shut, but in a while I prevailed to have it opened. And one of them asked, What authority I had to preach ? I asked, Who he was? He said, The Churchwarden. “Then you have no authority to question me. I shall not shew mine, but to a proper person. And I desire you will either behave well, or withdraw.” Another faid, “ Sir, will you shew it me? I am the Chief Constable." I answered, “Sir, I will.” While he was reading, the Churchwarden looked over him, and said, “O Sir, this will not do.” I said, Sir, it will do for me: and I require all of you who stay, to behave in a becoming manner? The Chief Constable then withdrew: but the crowd was so great, that they could not half get in. And those without were so noisy, that nothing could be heard. So after a time I judged it best to withdraw.
41. In the evening the Mayor sent desiring me to attend him in the morning at the Town-hall. I went. Soon after came the Mayor, the Clerk of the Peace, and all the chief men of the town. The Rector and Curate used some harsh words. The other Gentlemen behaved civilly. But they asked so many questions, and spoke so many at a time, it was impossible to answer. I said, “Gentlemen, be pleased to speak one at a time.” But this could not be done. Only they all agreed in desiring me to promise, that I would come no more. I told them, “I would make no such promise; no, not if my life depended upon it.” So we parted as we met, and the next day I got safe to Bristol.
[To be concluded in our next.]
DROBABLY, Miss , this may be the last 1 Trouble of the kind, which you wilł receive from me. Therefore you may forgive me this: and the rather, when you consider my Motives to it. You know, I can have no temporal View: I can have none but a faint, distant hope (because with God all Things are possible) of doing some Service to one whom I love. And this may answer the Question which you might naturally ask, “What would you have? What do you want with me?" I want you, not to be a Convert to my Opinions; but to be a Member of Christ, a Child of God, and an Heir of his Kingdom! Be any thing, as to outward Profession, so you are lowly in Heart: 'so you resist and conquer every motion of Pride, and have that Mind in you, which was also in Christ Jesus. Be what you please besides; only be meek and gentle, and in Patience possess your Soul á so that one may truly say to you
Calm thou ever art within, . All unruffled, all serene!
Hear what Preacher you will: but hear the Voice of God, and beware of Prejudice and every unkind Temper! Beware of foolish and hurtful Desires, or they will pierce you through VOL. III. ... W
with many sorrows. In one word, be any thing, but a Trifler: a Trifler with God and your own Soul. It was not for this, that God gave you
“A mind superior to the vulgar herd!"
No, Miss , no! But that you might employ all your Talents to the glory of Him that gave them. O do not grieve the holy Spirit of God! Is He not still striving with you? Striving to make you, not almoft, but altogether a Christian?' Indeed you must be all or nothing: a Saint, or a Devil! Eminent in Sin, or Holiness. The good Lord deliver you from every Snare, and guide your feet in the Way of Peace! How great a Pleasure would this give to all your real Friends, and in particular to, ;
Your affectionate Servant, ...
For Christ's fake,
From the Rev. Mr. Wesley, to the same.]
Colchester, March 20, 1759 M Y Wife, Miss --- -, surprised me last Night, by
IV informing me, you are left Mistress of a large Fortune. Shall I say, agreeably surprised me?' I cannot tell: because I believe there is another World. And I do not know, what Influence this change may have on your condition: therefore I am in fear, and in hope. You may be hereby far more happy, or far more miserable in Eternity! Oh make a stand! Consider the fitùation you are in: perhaps never before were you in so great danger. You know a little of your natural Tem. pers: now you have means of indulging, and thereby inflam. ing them to the uttermoft, And how many will incite you so to do? How few will dare to warn you against it? Now what food will you have for Pride? What infinite Tempta. tions, to think more highly than you ought to think? You do so already. But Oh, where will you stop! The good Lord. arrest the form in mid career! How impetuously now, (unless God interpofe) muft Self-will whirl you along? How deeply (unless He help) will you shortly be immersed in prac. tical Atheism? As ten thousand things will concur to drive. God out of your thoughts, as much as if he were not in the world. But above all, how will you escape from being swallowed up in Idolatry? Love of the World, such as you never knew before!
Hitherto you have been greatly superior to every delicacy in food: but even this may assault you now: and perhaps raise in you other depres, which you are now a stranger to. At present, you are above the Follies of dress: but will you be so a twelvemonth hence? May you not easily slide into the pride of life, in this as well as other instances ? Especially considering how your vanity will be gratified thereby. For who will not admire and applaud your admirable Taste? It will only remain for you to marry fome agreeable Person, that has much Wit and Sense, with little or no Religion; then it is finished! Either you will be throughly miserable in this World, or miserable to Eternity.
" But what business is this of yours ? Cannot you let me alone? What have I to do with you ?” Believe me, I could very easily let you alone, if I had not a real and tender good. will toward you: and if I did not know (what perhaps you dn not) that you have need even of me. You want Friends who understand you well, and who dare tell you the whole plain truth: and yet not in a surly, imperious manner; for then you could not receive it. I have endeavoured to do this once W 2