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For that's the way my Jury now shall bursto
These last words were given to' mc, in answer to the letter you sent me, the same day with the newspapers, of the men at Stourbridge, that are now printing a book against my writings, which is $0 clearly explained, if my writings are of God, they are printing against the Lord ; but if my writings are not of God, men shew no love to his honour to let me go on in his Name, to say the Lord saith, if they can prove the Lord hath not spoken by me; and that is as equally impossible for man to do, without searching into every truth, and trying them the way the Lord hath commanded them to be tried, as it is for a man that is stark blind to judge of colours. Neither can any man judge colours in the dark, yet in the dark they pretend to judge them, but are afraid to come to the light, fearing their deeds should be reproved. This Communication I am ordered to send to you to have it put in print with all speed. I am ready and willing to stand every trial to prevent the Judgments that threaten us, and that hang over our heads.-I shall give you part of the letter I received from my friend : “ There is a book now in the press, printing, and where seur
ral heads have been engaged in it, that are attacking, yourself, your writings, and your abertors.”'-. In answer to myself, no man can injure my character without he doth it by falsehood and lies : for my character will bear the strictest scrutiny as to any thing the world can lay to my charge ; but as to my writings, and from what Spirit they come, I am ready to stand the trial. If they can be proved from any Spirit, but the Spirit of the living Lord, I will freely give them up, and burn the whole. But I cannot suffer my judgment 10 be so easily imposed upon as to believe such wondrous wisdom, council, and truth, can come from any Spirit but from the God of Wisdom and of Truth, before it is tried by the touchstone of truth, and then the Lord will make the truth clear before them. Then how can men pretend to judge of things they know nothing about? Fornone but them that have searched into my writings can be judges of the truth they contain ; and as to the manner of the writings that men condemn, it is but the fulfilling the Scriptures; for it is written, The wisdom of God is foolishness to men and the wisdom of man is foolishness with God; and this truth is plain and easy to be understood, as men 80 foolishly pretend to explain the hidden mysteries of the Bible by their own wisdom; and they have. explained it so many ways that the Bible can have no meaning or explanation at all by the wisdom of men: for the wise men, the learned, and the good men, have drawn so many judgments different from each other, that they have made the Bible like a rope of sand, that cannot join together; and so they make their own wisdom, that will soon break in şunder. But tlie foolishness of God is wiser than all the wisdom of men, like a threefold cord, that cannot be broken. As soon as I had written these words, from my own observation, I was answered in the following lines :
Now from thy wisdom, I will answer man :
Here I am ordered to end my Book; and put in print that a book is publishing against my Writings; and it is said to mę, the Book is full of blasphemy, which will be proved hereafter. But I do not be. lieve the men designed to print blasphemy against the Lord ; but they cannot write against his words, ways, or wisdom, without it. This letter you are desired to send hastily to the printer. And here the Book ends.--So now, my dear Miss Townley, I hope your great fatigue for the present is over. I must conclude with my earnest prayers that the Lord will add a double blessing upon you. Please to remember me to all friends. Adieu,
And believe me, your's sincerely, (Signed,) Joanna SouthcoTT.
[Priee Nine Pence.]
June 9th, 1804.
Printed by S. ROUSSEAU,
LETTERS AND COMMUNICATIONS,
WRITTEN FROM JOANNA SOUTHCOTT,
TO MR. W. SHARP, IN LONDON.
THE PÁRABLE OF THE LITTLE FLOCK OF SHEEP.
THE Fable that was in my heart, called to my remembrance, was of a man that was tried in Exeter Castle, for stealing of sheep. He pleaded he did not fteal them ; for he was going to a fair, and the flock of sheep jumped over the hedge and ran before his horse. He rode as fast as his horse could run, to get before them ; but still the sheep kept before the horse. He turned his horse inany ways to try to shun them, but the sheep would imniediately turn and get before him. He then turned his horse; and thought to go home; but the sheep turned in an instant, and came before him again. After his turning many times,'trying every way in his power to get before the sheep, and finding it impossible, he thought he might as well go with them to the fair, as be found driving them home to his own house; and in driving them to the fair he was taken. , And in this manner he pleaded in the Castle, to clear himself; and the judge said he believed him innocent; but the jury said they believed him guilty. The judge could not bear to give it up to the jury; and said he would try another jury, He had another jury, and tried the cause over again, and they found him guilty the same. When the judge found he could not free hiin; but by the two juries had made the cause more strong against him, the judge then addressed the prisoner " I believe you innocent concerning stealing these sheep; but I believe you are guilty of some fatal crime, for which the S. Rousseat, Printer Woad Street, Spa Fields.
judgments of God followed you, in the sheep, to punish you for a crime that you have committed, in a criine that you have not; and as I have tried my utmost to save you, and by that way brought it the harder against you, it is impossible now for me to save your life, as you are found guilty by both juries; therefore I shall thank you, as you must die, that you will confess what crime you have committed.” The bloody wretch then confessed, he lived a servant in the house with the mistress, he was then married to; but as she had got a husband when he went there a servant, so to have the wife, whom he said he loved, he contrived, one morning, when his master arose to go to a fair, to rise early and go before him and meet him in a private place and murder him, which he did. He then went home to bed as if composed, and happy in the cruelty he had committed, and appeared easy and cheartul before the wife. The night came, but no husband returned. She was alarmned ; and he pretended equal alarm the same; but would not go alone in pursuit to find him. A miserable night was spent by the wife, and he appeared to share her sorrows, as an angel of light, though he was the devil himself. When the master was found murdered, he professed every agony with the wife ; and by his false and pretended love gained her favour, and she afterwards married him. And at the time he was taken he was going to the same Fair that his master was going to when he inurdered him; and at the very place that he killed his master and threw him in the ditch, the sheep that were in the field jumped over the hedge and ran before him. So the innocent sheep brought the guilty wretch to the end he deserved. I feel, from this Parable, that the whole mysteries of the Bible will be brought to light, and the concealed Murderer be made known. But here my soul trembles and all my bones shake! I see myself in the Woman's place; my dear Lord mur