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March 25th, 1806. He begins his letter by saying
“ The spirit by which you are actuated, is diametrically opposite to that which has ever influenced the members of the church of Christ. “ Be ready always," (says an inspired Apostle) “ to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason, of the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear.'
To these words I answer, that he must have forgot the contents of the first letter I sent him, when he wrote to me in such a manner; because in my first letter to him, I answered every enquiry concerning the hope that was in me, and the faith that was in me, from the Gospel of St. John, of the words that our Saviour said, that the Spirit of Truth should come to lead us into all Truths. This is the truth of the Gospel to believe ; and from the visitation of the Spirit to me, and the truth that had followed the prophecies which were given me, I humbly shewed my faith, why I believed, what I believed, and the grounds I had for my belief; and from the Promise that was made in the Fall being explained to me, how it was made to the woman, that the Lord would bruise the head of her adversary in the end ; and from the words of the prophet Isaiah, xxv. 8; in St. John xii. 31. it is said, the prince of this world shall be cast out; and in chap. xvi. 13. our Saviour telleth us, when the Comforter cometh, the Spirit of Truth is to guide us into all truths. So from the Gospel we are assured, as well as from the Prophets, that Satan is to be cast out; and in Rev. xii. 10. it is said, then cometh salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his CHRIST; in chap. xx. 1-3. it is written, that Satan should be sealed down, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled. Sofrom these Scriptures, and many more, there is assurance that lie will be cast down , but from the manner they are explained to me, of
the PROMISE made in the Fall, that the Sun of Righteousness inust first arise with healing in his wings, to heal her of the fall; and by that promise being fulfilled, Satan's power is destroyed; and it is written, John viii. 36, If the Son shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed : made heirs of God and joint heirs with Jesus Christ. Now as these things were explained to me, I told him of the hope that was in me, that the Lord would now fulfil his promise to bruise the serpent's head, and heal the fall of the woman. This is the Son's making us free ; because it is written, the son of the bondwoman cannot be heir with the son of the free; so the woman must be freed, according to the Scripfures, and her betrayer must be cast. Now as these things had been explained; and from the promises made to me, that the Lord would now fulfil them, I told of the hope that was in me, and why I believed ic from the truth that had followed my prophecies ; so here he condemned in his letter the very things I had answered him before ; because I had done the very things he said I ought to do. And now I shall come to another observation in his letter. He says,
“ John commands Christians to try the Spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets are gone cut into the world."
To this I answer : here is a Scripture I have perfectly obeyed; for I tried and proved the Spirit for myself, for pear TWENTY YEARS, before I was visited by the Spirit of Prophecy; and after that, though it was like death unto me, yet, I went to people to know the truth of what the Spirit had told me, concerning them; and so I tried and proved the truth of the Spirit, which encouraged me to go on, and to write what was revealed to me ; again I tried the Spirit, and proved the truth of the Spirit in many remarkable instances that followed ; and from 1796 to the 1800, I tried the Spirit, and proved it by putting letters in the hands of ministers, of the events
of the years before they took place. So this Scripture I have perfectly obeyed, before I ever published to the world, that all men might know I had not written any cunningly devised fables, but made known unto them the TRUTH of the SPIRIT, and the COMING of our Lord. Many false prophets are gone out in the world I grant; and also many lying wonders. . I have reproyed false prophets, and false Christs, who have both written to me: and the truth of the Gospel is plain before us, that the END is at hand, of the coming of Christ. But as our Saviour told us of false Prophets and false Christs, so he likewise told us that the SPIRIT of TRUTH should come to guide us into all truths, and bring all things to our remembrance. Thus the truth of the Gospel I have not only believed, but I also see the truth of all before me; and the Spirit of Truth I have been led by; because I see it on every side, abroad and at home; and of false prophets I see many. So these Scriptures, that he hath pointed out, not only proves the truth of my mission, but also justifies my conduct. Now I come to his next observation.
“ St. Paul says, the mystery of iniquity doth already work; only he who now leiteih would let; until he be taken out of the way.'
These are his words; and in these he affirms and proves the truth of my mission; and this was the sense of my first letter to him, that the power of Satan must be destroyed, before Christ's PEACEABLE KINGDOM can be established; for he is the mystery of iniquity that doth let, and will let, until hé be taken out of the way: for while his power remains, it is like the seed in the ground that is of an evil weed, which bath taken deep root; and though you may try to cut off the branches that spring up, yet, if the root remain in the earth, it will continually spring again; and this we may see among man. kind; in every age of the world, when bloody tyrants
have been cut off, who, from their cruelty and ty., ranny, have shewed theirselves to be the branches of the devil; yet we may discern, in every age, after their decease, other evil branches have sprung up; and this will continue, till that Evil Root, be taken out of the way; and this is the mystery of iniquity, which I have said doth work; and all will find he will work, till he be taken out of the way, whom the Lord shall consume with the brightness of his coming. So here this man, Mayer, owns my prophecies to be true. And now I shall come 10 another observation in his letter.
“ Do you, or do you not, apply to yourself, and to an individual, what I conceive to belong to Christ, and to his Church? If you were not ashamed of your nssertions, why should gou hesitate in acknowledging them ? and if you have truth on your sidle, why do you not stand boldly forth to support it?"
To this I answer, it is to Christ and his CHURCH that I allude Revelation, chap. xii. 19. chap. xxi. and xxii. but not in the manner that the world allude them; that is, to the general persecution? that has been to the Church of Christ; because this! WONDER stands for the end; for the Church of Christ cannot be redeemed, to fulfil the Scriptures of truth, before the PROMISE that was made to the woman after the fall be fulfilled; but as the mystery was concealed from man, that ever this promise would be pleaded by a woman, to ask and receive that our joys may be full; therefore.it stands a wonder to man of the manner Christ will redeem his Church, by the Promise made in the Fall. But if men search my writings, they will find I have explained what it meaneth : that Christ and his Church means the Church of the FIRST BORN. For if men discern through my writings, how all believers stand with me, and I with them, to be UNITED tog ther, and how the promises of God are made to all alike, that believe in his Promises, that he will finljil them,
they will clearly discern the visitation to me is but' the shadow of Christ and his CHURCH ; and how his visitation will be to all. But as Eve stood the shadow of the Fall, by her disobedience at first, and the following generations were concluded under her fall; so when the Sun of Righteousness ariseth with healing in his wings, to heal the fall of the woman, to bring in the happy Church of Christ, militant here on earth, to join the Church triumphant in heaven, the fall of the woman must be freed: and as disobedience was the shadow of man's destruction, to give Satan the power over them ; so there must be TRUE obedience found in the woman, to the Spirit of her Lord, before he will come to free her from the fall ; that as in Adam all died. even so in Clirist shall all be made alive ; and this is Christ and his Church that is meant in the Revelation, which Satan comes down in great wrath to persecute, because he knoweth he hath but a short space ; for when that Promise is fulfilled, he knows his head must be bruised, and man's redemption, from his power, must take place. So Christ and his Church I allow to be the meaning ; but not in the manner it is placed by man, as a general thing, when the Christian Churches, so called, have been in a persecuted state ; for then, if they were the true church, Satan must have known he had but a short space some thousand years ago, when the Jewish churches were in a persecuted state. But here men may say, that was belore the Revelation was penned; so I shall come to the persecution of the Disciples ;-to what a state of persecution was the Church then brought ? and yet that chapter was not fulfilled; for if men discern the chapter, they must know, when it is fulfilled, that the kingdom of God must come, and Satan be cast down; as it is said, he will have but a short time to go on with his persecution against the Church of CHRIST, (this being the very Church which he persecutes ;) for it is said in this persecuted Church,