Page images

further, quicken, and build up the living members with? The milk which nourisheth the living babe, is living, which must come pure from the breast of life, and not be mixed with man's wisdom or brain inventions, or it cannot yield pure nourishment. What then must the bread, and wine, and water of the kingdom be, whereon the children and heirs of the kingdom must feed, or they cannot be satisfied ? And the ministers of the gospel are stewards of this heavenly life, this heavenly Spirit, this heavenly power, this heavenly treasure which they have in the earthen vessels, and which God enables them to bring forth, for the feeding of his lambs and sheep. Christ said unto Peter, Lovejt thou me more than these? Peter answered him, Yea, Lord, thou knowest that I love thee. If it be fo, feed my lambs, feed my jeep, said Christ to him. But how should he feed them? In what should he feed them? With what should he feed them? All power, faith Christ, is given me in heaven and in earth; and I am to ascend to my Father, and to receive the fullness of his Spirit; and do ye wait, and ye shall receive abundantly of the fame Spirit and power, and then in that Spirit and power ye shall be able to feed my lambs and sheep, that are begotten and gathered to me, in it; but out of it none is able to feed and build them up; for that is the very thing they are to be fed with and built up in. Indeed a man may be a minister of the letter, a minister of the law, without the Spirit and power; but of the gospel he cannot possibly; for that consists not in letter, but in Spirit, 2 Cor. iii. and the faith that is to be begotten there, is not to stand in the wisdom of man, but in the power of God. The gospel-state, the gospel-church, the gospel-building, begins in the power, and is carried on in the power, and finished or perfected in the power; and the whole ministry of the gospel is to partake of this power, and minister in it, or they can do nothing in this work. Christ Jesus our Lord begun it in this power, and none can carry it on without this power: the Lord God of Glory laid the foundation ; Bebold, I lay in Sion for a forndation, &c. Ifai. xxviii. 16. 1 Pet. ii. 4, 5, 6. And the quickening Spirit alone is able to make living stones and spiritual stones; and the Lord alone is able to build them up by the operation of this Spirit and power; and they that are the true ministers of the gospel

, minister in this, and are to wait for it daily from God that they may minister in it,

Quest. 3. What is the maintenance of ihe ministers of Christ, or what is to be the maintenance of the true ministers under the gospel ?

Answ. Christ, who hath sent them forth to minister in his name, hath provided for them; and they that are his true ministers, are satisfied with what he hath provided for them, Matt. x. 10. being careful not to make the gospel, which is to be an inward blessing, outwardly chargeable to any. The mind of the true ministers is about the service of Christ, how they may be faithful to him, gather souls to him, feed them with the bread of life from him ; not what they shall have from men for fo doing, for such covet no man's gold or silver, &c.



Some Questions answered concerning the Lamb's War.
Queft. 1. HO is the Lamb ?

Answ. He that takes away the sins of the world. The word which was in the beginning. Behold the lamb of God, said John, John i. 1. and ver. 29. He that was born of the virgin Mary after the Aesh; and was also the man-child, born of the travailing-church after the Spirit, Rev. xii. 5.

Queft. 2. Who makes war with the Lamb ?

Answ. All that are in wickedness, in darkness, in fin and corruption, and under the power thereof, who strive to defend and maintain this kingdom against the appearance of his light, Spirit, and power in them.

Queft. 3. What strength have they on their side that make war against the Lamb ?

Anfw. The strength of the great red dragon, who hath seven heads and ten horns; and in every one of his heads is wisdom, and in every one of his horns there is power. So that dreadful is the battle that is fought between them, either inwardly in the heart, or outwardly in the world, when Christ appears in his light, Spirit and power, to assault and break down the kingdom of darkness, and to set up his own kingdom, which must be set up, even in the world, Dan. vii. 14. 27. Rev. xi. 15.

Quest. 4. Did the great red dragon and bis army ever (in any respeEl) prevail in this battle?

Anfw. Yes; for even while the Lamb, and his pure life and holy testimony have prevailed, so that the dragon and his army could get no ground over them inwardly, but salvation (the wall and bulwark of God's heritage) and strength, and the kingdom of God, and the power of his Christ, did prevail inwardly.; yet the dragon, even then, hath prevailed over their goods, liberties, and lives outwardly, and he drove the woman, the true church, out of her place, as I may fay, that she was forced to fly into the wilder ness, he fo forely assaulted her : yea, after that also he made war with the remnant of her feed, and cast some of them into prison, and drank the blood of those that would not drink his false church's cup, but keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus, Rev. xii. and chap. ii. 10. Yea, the beast to which he gave his power (which had seven heads and ten horns like him, chap. xiii. 1.) made war with the faints, and overcame them outwardly, though he could not overcome them inwardly; for he could not make them to worship him, ver. 7, 8. Nay, nor the second beast neither, though he had horns like a lamb, and spake like a dragon, and exerciled all the power of the first beast, and did great wonders, and


[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

had power to give life unto the image of the former beast, and would kill all that would not worship the image of it; and would suffer none to buy or sell but such as had the mark or name of the beast: yet neither could this beast overcome the followers of the Lamb, as to their inward life and testimony, though it had power to kill and suppress them outwardly, ver. 11. to the end, and chap. xiv. 9. to ver. 13. which plainly shews the saints had patience, and kept the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus, and would not worship the beast and his image, nor receive his mark, either in forehead or hand.

Queft. 5. Wbat was the cry up and down nations, when the dragon and the beast thus prevailed, and when the false church carried ber cup of fornications up and down through kingdoms and nations, and made the kings and inhabitants of the earth drink thereof; and who would not drink thereof, she would not let them buy nor sell, but impoverish, imprison them, and drink their blood? Rev. xyii. 2. and 6.

Answ. The cry every-where was, Who is like unto the beast? Who is able to make war with the beast? Indeed there appeared no power any-where able to withstand or resist this power, which the dragon had, who gave it both to the beast which arose out of the sea, and to the beast which arose out of the earth ; both which joined together to persecute all that would not drink of the false church's cup, which was golden without, but full of abomination and filthiness of fornication, fornicating from the holy life, Spirit, and power of the Lamb inwardly, who is the head of the true church and true worshippers, Rev. xiii. 4. and chap. xvii. 4, 5. Quest

. 6. What is the time of the dragon's, the beasies, and false church's thus prevailing against the true church, in reference to the outward, though they cannot prevail against its inward life and testimony ; but that (through patience and fiefferings) prevails over and reigns inwardly, in the midst of all their cruelty and oppreling of the outward man?

Answ. It is the time of Antichrist's reign, and fitting in the temple if he were God, and exalting himself over all that is called God, and which ought to be worshipped. It is the time of the true church's being in the wilderness, and of the man-child's (which the true church brought forth) being caught up to God; which things were to laft, according to the scripture account, one thousand two hundred and fixty days, or a time, times, and half a time, 2 Thes). ii. 3, 4. Rev. xii. 6, 14.

Quest. 7. What will the Lamb do when this time is out?

Anfw. He will come and make war again ; he will come with his heavenly armies, armed with spiritual armour, and fight an heavenly battle; yea, he will judge and make war in righteousness, against the unrighteousness of the dragon, and the beast, and the false prophet; and his heavenly armies shall follow him their captain and leader, on white horses, cloathed in fine linen, white and clean, who shall fight in his Spirit and power, against all that he fightech, against; and out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should fmite the nations, and he shall rule them with a rod of iron, and make the spirits of all his opposers bow under him, and fly to felter themselves from that wrath which they cannot escape. Oh! who would not kiss the Son, that he might not provoke the Lamb to wrath against him, whose wrath is dreadful! Rev. xix. 11. to the end. Psal. ii. 11.

Quest. 8. What shall the cry be, when God's Spirit and power prevaileth over the dragon's spirit and power, when the Lamb gets the vietory, when he smites the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips Mall fiey the wicked; when be brings down the dregon, beast, and false prophet, and the false church, mother of barlots (which hath drunk the blood of saints) with his vials, plagues, woes, thunders, &c. ? when Babylon the great city falls, which made all nations drunk with her spiritual wine of fornication ?

Answ. Then the power which doth this shall be magnified. Then it shall be said no more, who can make war with the beast? but who can withstand this power? Who can make war with the innocent, righteous Lamb (who hath his sword in his mouth) and with his tender-hearted, faithful followers, and prosper? Who shall not fear thee, O Lord, and glorify thy name? For all nations Mall come and worship before thee ; for thy judgments are made manifest. Great and marvellous are thy works, Lord God Almighty; just and true are thy ways, thou King of saints, Rev. xv. 3, 4. Yea, a great voice of much people in heaven fall say, Hallelujah, salvation, and glory, and honour, and power unto the Lord our God: for true and righteous are bis judgments; for be bath judged the great whore, which did corrupt the earth with her fornication, and bath avenged the blood of his faints at her band, chap. xix. ver. I, 2.

Now doth it not concern all people to consider which is Sion, God's holy mountain, and which is the Jerusalem of his building; and the holy city of God, the holy church of God, the mother of all the truly living children? for the Jerusalem which is above, and which is free, is the mother of them all, Gal. iv. 26. And also which is Babylon, the city built by man, and the spirit of Antichrist, in a kind of likeness, but not in the real nature of the true church; that they may wait for and follow God's call to come out of her, and may not partake of her fins, of her forceries (Rev. xviii. 22.) of her fornication from the pure life, Spirit and power, and setting up worships, and compelling people to worship in her forms (which are out of the life, and out of the power) that they partake not of ber plagues, which will indeed be very dreadful, such as shall affright any from coming near her, or meddling with her spiritual forceries and fornications any more, Rev. xviii. 4. and ver. 9, 10. Oh! therefore let every one consider what the beast is, what his image, what the mark in the forehead, what in the right hand; and take heed he be not found worshipping the beast and his image, or receiving his mark, either in his forehead or right hand, left God make him to drink of the wine of his wrath, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation, and he be tormented with fire and brimstone in


the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb, and have no rest day nor night, Rev. xiv. 9, 10, 11. I had rather run great hazards outwardly, and suffer much amiction and persecution from men, to keep my soul true to God, in the spiritual worship and testimony which he hath given me, against all false ways and invented worships, than-expose my soul to the hazard of drinking of this dreadful cup of God's indignation; which the Lord God of tender mercies teach men, and give them true wisdom, to avoid and escape. Amen.



EHOLD my servant fall deal prudently, he shall be exalted and ex

tolled, and be very high. As many were astonished at thee (bis visage was To marred more than any man, and his form more than the fons of men); fo fhall be sprinkle many nations ; the kings shall shut their mouths at bim : for that which had not been told them, shall they see; and that which they had not beard, sball they consider, Ifai. lii. 13, 14, 15.

Thou art fairer than the children of men: grace is poured into thy lips; therefore God hath blessed thee for ever. Gird thy sword upon thy thigh, 0 Most Mighty, with thy glory and thy majesty. And in thy majesty ride prosperously

, because of truth, and meekness, and righteousness; and thy right hand shall teach thee terrible things. Thine arrows are sharp in the hearts of the king's enemies, whereby the people shall fall under thee. Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever : the scepter of thy kingdom is a right scepter. Thou lovest righteousness and hatest wickedness, therefore God, thy God, bath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows, Psal. xlv. ver. 2. to 8.

Strengthen ye the weak hands, and confirm the feeble knees. Say to them that are of a fearful beart, Be strong, fear not : behold, your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompence, he will come and save you. Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped. Then jhall the lame man leap as an hart, and the tongue of the dumb fing; for in the wilderness sball waters break out, and freams in the desert. And the parebed ground shall become a pool, and the thirsty land Springs of water; in the babilotion of dragons, where each lay, shall be grass with reeds and rushes

. And highway shall be there, and a way, and it shall be called the way of boliness ; the unclean Mall, not pass over it, but it shall be for those: the wayfaring men, though fools, mall not err therein. No lion shall be there, nor any ravenous beat shall go up thereon, it shall not be found there ; but the redeemed shall walk there. And the ranfomed of the Lord shall return and come to Sion with songs, and ever, lasting joy upon their heads : they shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and fighing Mall flee away, Ifai. xxxv. ver. 3. to the end.


« PreviousContinue »