«PHILADELPHIA: Printed for the Author. 1737 This is an annotated text of All Slave-Keepers That keep the Innocent in Bondage, Apostates, published by ...»
At this Time also it is brought to my Remembrance, with great Thankfulness to my dearest God and Father, Redeemer and Preserver, the great Liberty that I with many Thousands more enjoy in this good Land which to many wise & right considerate People, is much more valuable than natural Life; especially our religious Liberty; with the Plenty of all good Things needful for the Body, which many hundreds of Thousands have been and are deprived of, by the above named vilest, grossest and blackest of all Abominations.
I verily believe there are some now in the Practice of Slave-keeping, that in the Time of their first Love and tender sweet Espousal to Christ, would have been ready to have answered if they had been asked, as the Man did the Prophet, Is thy Servant a Dog, that he should do such [page 143] things? and yet he did them; and so have these done, for want of Watchfulness, being led into it by the soul Example of their Preachers and Leaders, which have caused them to err. O Lord my good God and sweet Saviour, be pleased to preserve me from this gross Sin, and all Evil. So be it. B.L.
Abington, the 8th of the 10th Month.
THis Morning very early it sprung again afresh and very lively in my Mind, concerning Marriages made in the sweet Love, Fear, Wisdom and Counsel of the almighty living Lord God and eternal Father in Heaven, if we want Riches and Honour, Pleasure and Joy: What is comparable to those Marriages made only in the Lord, in the Church, in Heaven, in the Temple;
but few such Marriages I fear are to be found now a Days, that are made by the Father in Heaven, which is the Truth. But abundance of Marriages are made by Father in Hell, the Devil, which is out the Truth: Made by the Lust of the Eye, the Lust of the Flesh, and Pride of Life, and for Covetousness to maintain them, which is all of him that is an Enemy to all Mankind, the Devil [page 144] or Satan, if we did but know it there is no worse Devil or unclean Spirit than Self, that dwells and Rules in poor Mankind, to their Destruction Soul and body. Self or Covetousness, says the Apostle, is the root of all Evil; tell me my Friends and Mortals, can there be a worse Devil, or more unclean Spirit or Root from which all Evil grows, or a worse Fountain than that from which all our Misery flows?
Can there, my dear and well beloved Friends, be a better God or Holy Spirit than that, or he that leads into all Truth, which is Heaven itself, and so into all Peace and Joy; or a worse Devil or unholy Spirit than that which leads into all untruth, and so into all Sorrow, Destruction and Misery, which is Hell enough in my opinion, where the Worm never dies, and the Fire goes not out, and Torment enough for the wickedest of Men, and greater than I wish for the worst Enemies, but rather would pray for them, that they would so live as to escape that Place or State of Torment. B.L.
I have had several other things of moment for a long time moving in mind, concerning the sweet comfortable and happy Life, Mankind might live, in Joy [page 145] and if he would follow his inward true and spiritual Guide, which would never lead him wrong if he would strictly follow its Counsel. I say I had many things in my Mind to write, but am a little straitned at present, and must wait to see whether this that is done may be of any Service, or in any measure well received by my Brethren, which are begotten and born again of the immortal Seed and Word of God, which lives and abides forever, and is God himself: Those thus born are his Sons and Daughters, God is their own Father, and they his own dear Children, and his Heirs, and joined or equal Heirs with Christ, in his and their Fathers Kingdom, which is and ever will remain an eternal Kingdom of GLORY or G L O R I O U S GOVERNMENT where he the Holy One doth rule and govern, which is his Church, in his People, in his House or his Temple, in new Jerusalem, in his Sanctuary, in his Kingdom, in himself all one and the same eternal SANCTUM SANCTORUM. Christ was not ashamed to call such spiritual Souls his Brethren, which worship God in Spirit, and in his Church which is his Kingdom, saying, I will declare thy Name unto my Brethren: and after [page 146] his blessed Resurrection sent forth a Woman Preacher the very first, to declare of it, and I believe to preach freely as she had freely receiv’d of him; Go tell my Bretbren I am risen, and that I ascend to my Father and your Father, to my God & your God. O glorious Message! one of the best that ever was, and yet sent by a Woman! The glad Tidings of great Joy, that their Lord was alive that they thought was dead. They did not reject the Testimony because it came by a Woman; no more than the Samaritans, the Woman that Jesus sent from Jacob’s Well, as I can find; but they went or ran to see for themselves.
Although I have writ thus much for Womens Preaching, yet I would have none go before they are sent of the Lord, no more than Men; for it is alike hateful to me, and many worthy Friends, to my certain Knowledge. I could willingly pray to the Lord with all my Soul and Spirit, that he would be pleased to stop the Mouths of all those Lyars, who say Thus faith the Lord, when he never spake by them. Male and Female are all one in Christ the Truth, the true Church or Congregation which is in God, and God in his Church which is his [page 147]
Kingdom, where he rules and reigns, and is blessed for evermore. So be it. B.L.
Abington, the 22nd of the 12th mo. 1737, 8.
THis Morning early, after five Days and Nights Fasting, I was considering the many Calumnies which the World or People of the World, has cast upon the Saints and Servants of the Living God, my very dear true and faithful Friends in Christ, called Quakers, as if they kept Slaves, or encouraged and connived at it for their Interest, Favour or Affection, or some base sinister Ends. But it is a meer Slander, for they abhor the Practice, and dare not touch with it, as verily believing it to be one of the grossest Sins and Iniquities (with all Concomitants) in the whole World.
Objection. But some may and have objected in my Hearing, that some, yea many call Quakers, and their Preachers, Elders and chief Leaders & Rulers, Men of Renown in the Congregation, Num. 16. 1, 2, 3. and of great Repute in the World, John 15. 18, 19. yea verily the World loves its own.
Answer. But I answer, they were not all Israel who were called Israel, Rom. 9.6, 7, 8. but some were Apostates, Vapage 148] gabonds and Impostors, and they were some of the worst Enemies, the very worst the Hebrews had, and procured their Ruin, Overthrow and utter Destruction, as is largely set forth in the History of the Wars of the Jews by Josephus, beside what is mentioned in holy Scripture plentifully by the holy Prophets.
And so it was amongst the Primitive Christians, about the Time of the Ten Persecutions, when they gat a little Ease from the Heathen tyrants, the apostate Christians went to the same devilish Work, of murthering and butchering the true Christians, about their Creeds, keeping of Easter, and other Idols, and about the Clause of one Substance and two Substance, as if the eternal Being could be divided; But especially after Constantine the Roman Emperor was converted to the Christian Faith, in his Zeal he gave such large Donations and Revenues to the Church, that it is recorded, the same Day there was a voice heard from Heaven, crying aloud, This Day is Poison poured into the Church! Which the Event soon after verified. By an ancient Observation, Religion brought forth Wealth, and the Daughter devoured the Mother; it is the very same now.
So [page 149] when the Bishops, Preachers and Rulers grew rich and high, they centred in Pride, Idleness, and Fullness of Bread; then they went together by the Ears with might and main, striving who should be greatest; then to inventing and setting forth the old, nasty, fulsome, stinking Whore’s Trumpery or Merchandise to Sale, Rev. 18. 13. 17. 5. and they that would not buy it, or could not receive it, might expect to be sent out of the World by all the Tortures that Wrath and Hell could invent, as they could prevail with Kings, Rulers and Governors to assist them, by unrighteous Laws and Edicts. And when the Magistrates were such Fools as to dance after their Call, they embrued whole Nations and Kingdoms in Blood. These Things are largely set fort in Eusebius’s Ecclesiastical History, an excellent sweet Book it is, and I could heartily wish all right thinking solid sober Men had one of them, especially all Magistrates and Rulers of all Persuasions. I think I should rejoice to see it reprinted in Pennsylvania, altho’ I were out some Pounds toward the Charge of it, for the good of Mankind, notwithstanding I have one by me. If the Folio Volume cannot be printed, there [page 150] is an Abridgement extant by William Caton, which has past several Editions, being of a small Price and soon read. I could wish likewise, that every such Person had one of those sweet edifying Books entituled, The Spirit of Martyrs revived, by Ellis Hooks; a cheap Book and soon read, abridged from the three large Volumes, with Variety of Collections from Scripture and other Books, from the Beginning of the World till within a few Years, concerning Persecution from Scripture and other Books, from the Beginning of the World till within few Years, concerning Persecution and Persecutors, with curious Remarks.
Objection carried a little further concerning some that go under the Name of Quakers, keeping Slaves.
I answer with Romans ii. 17, 19, 21, 23, 24, 28, 29. He is not a few that is one outwardly, neither is that Circumcision which is outward in the Flesh. But he is a few which is one inwardly, and Circumcision is that of the Heart, in the Spirit and not in the Letter, whose Praise is not of Men but of God. Courteous and gentle Reader, please to read the whole Chapter in the Fear and Love of God, and in the Light of Truth, and thou will find and feel excellent Matter in it. As in the following Chapter likewise.
[page 151] Rev. ix.10, 20, 21, 22. I know the blasphemies of them that say they are Jews, and are not, but are of the Synagogue of Satan. Rev. iii. 9, 10, 11, 12, 15, 16, 17. I which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie.
Philadelphia, the 25th of 12th mo. 1737, 8.
This being the ninth Day of my Fasting, having taken nothing but a Draught of Spring Water several times a Day, and am as well in Health as ever since I came to Pennsylvania, which is six Years this Spring, it lies on my mind to say something concerning Extortion, in paying or receiving Interest for Money, which I have been under Exercise about a considerable Time; and I could be heartily glad that our Friends as a Society would wholly set it aside, altho’ I have something else to live on but the Labour of my Hands, and weakly in Body, and pretty well in Years, being near sixty.
Abington, 30th of the 2nd month, 1738.
This Morning, as I was preparing to go to Meeting, it was opened in me That all the nominal Quakers, who live [page 152] in Sin, which is Hell, the Devil’s Kingdom and Government, are of the same Spirit and as bad as other People in and of the World, and some of them much worse. Such as have been enlightened, and are sunk into the Earth again, are more dark and stupid than others; for Publicans and Harlots stand more ready and willing to receive the Message of the Kingdom of Heaven, which is Righteousness, Peace, and Joy in the Holy Ghost) than they; according to Christs Doctrine, and the Observation of the Children of God (who dwell in his Kingdom of Righteousness, which is free from all Sin) and keeps their Habitation in the Light.
For as dear George Fox writes, Journal, Part I. page 55, 56. he saw concerning the Priests, that although they acted by a dark Power, and stood in the Deceit, which they and the People were kept under, yet they were not the greatest Deceivers spoken of in Scripture, for they were not come so far as Cain, Corah, Dathan, Balaam, and others, to hear the Voice of God, and knew it, yet these turned from the Spirit; such as these were and would be the greatest Deceivers, far beyond the Priests. Likewise [page 153] among Christians, such as could preach in Christ’s Name, work Miracles, cast out Devils, & c.
and go as far as Cain, Corah and Balaam in Gospel Times; such as these were and would be the greatest Deceivers.