Imatges de pÓgina


I SHOULD very willingly have forborne to appear thus publicly in such controversies at this time, if the truth might have been otherwise cleared; for I have a life in peace more than in contests, and a tender respect to the more conscientious of all sorts professing religion, that have a tenderness and sincerity in them; but I am necessitated thus to appear, because of the hardness and perversness of some Baptists, and their publicly reproaching and scandalizing the truth professed by us called Quakers, both in words, preaching and print, and their clamouring up and down the country against us, both in Buckinghamshire, Surrey, Sussex, and other parts; in which thing Matthew Caffin, their great agent and contender, and William Burnet, of Chertsey, are chiefly concerned against us; whereby they have to their power, supplied the persecutor's place, now in this little time of liberty, like persons implacable, envying our liberty and prosperity. William Burnet's personal reflections in his book against some amongst us, which he has gathered from reports, as the former persecuting priests were wont to do, I could more easily have passed by, than his wronging, perverting and opposing the truth of our principles, though several of his reflections are false and slanderous, for that any particular fall or failings of persons cannot rationally be alleged to destroy principles fallen from. But considering the divisions that are amongst Baptists, even the leaders, as to their principles, it might have been some stop to William Burnet's outrage in this matter, and they should have agreed among themselves before they had thus appeared against us; some being for a particular election of persons, and both denying saving grace to be free to all, and Christ's dying for all; others being for Christ's death for all, and general redemption; and some pleading for free-will. Several of their teachers, and some hearers, are for, and observe the Seventh-day-Sabbath imposed on the Jews, and have preached, written and printed for the imposing of it on Christians; many others of them are against it. And why does not our opposer plead for his water-baptism and Seventh-day-Sabbath, here against us? But therein he would not be popular enough. Many affirm Christ to have done and completed all for man on the cross without; but some, that the offering was not completed, nor the type under the Law fully answered, until he was entered into Heaven, or the Holy Place. Many of them are for paying priests tythes, rather than suffer; others have written against it as Anti-christian; and yet few stand out of it. Some of their teachers


have contended and printed for taking the oath-several gratifying the persecutors, and swearing themselves out of prison, by which others have suffered the more: which hath been a grief to some who were more conscientious; many of them running into holes and corners, not daring to meet publicly if but a little storm break forth. And has not William Burnet heard how Thomas Tillam (their great Seventhday-Sabbath man) and his fellow-prisoner, deceitfully made escape out of Ipswich prison, which was no small blot upon them? And have not some of them gotten into the priests' places, pulpits, preached for hire, tythes, &c. as Tombs and others, when permitted? As also two of their eminent leaders, viz. Robert Everard, and Jo. Attaway, of Brantree, in Essex, turned Papists, and become great contenders for the church of Rome. These things I mention, as having been most obvious and public-besides grass coruptions both as to principle and practice, might be further manifest against some of their chieftains, which at present I shall forbear to mention here.


And now though this William Burnet hath shown his envious and persecuting spirit, which has put forth its sting against us, we do in the elect seed tread upon its head, and are not pierced thereby. And that spirit shall be crushed, and the elect shall reign over it in the power of Christ; and I have as much satisfaction in appearing against the persecuting spirit in William Burnet, as against it in other open opposers and persecutors; for what could we reasonably expect from him and such as he is, if they had power, but they would be as great persecutors as any that we have suffered under, whilst they show such enmity and implacableness at this time of day against us. And whereas William Burnet in his epistle says, "he shall leave it, the cause is God's, and whatever reproach he undergoes therein, he hopes he shall quietly bear, &c."; by which he seems as if he would be quiet now when he has done his worst against us. But it is probable he would have had more quietness and peace if he had never appeared thus against the upright, as he has done in his confused book. Now, reader, take a view of some of his doctrines and apparent contradictions hereafter, whereby he has given a deadly blow to his own cause, which is proved none of God's,



HERE are several of William Burnet's contradictions, collected in his own words, out of his book, and compared, as follows:

William Burnet, in page 3 of his book, says: "Paul preached a Christ made of a woman, and not a Christ in them that God will redeem the world by."

But in contradiction he says: "I do not deny that the fruits and effects of our justification doth shew itself both within and without."

Page 4. "Paul's knowledge of sin came by the Law, and not by the Light within."

Contradiction. "The grace of God received, and the love of Christ revealed in the work of regeneration, doth principle the heart with an enmity to sin, and the grace received in the work of reconciliation begets a hatred to it, so that it is from the principle within."

Page 5. "I would not give any one ground of jealousy that I should judge that our obedience is any cause either of our justification or sanctification." And page 10. "The spirit in man, and obedience to that spirit, is not the cause of man's union with God."

But in contradiction, page 35. "We are sealed by an obedience to the Gospel." And page 8. "The Spirit is alive because of righteousness."

"Paul's knowledge of sin came by the Law, not the Light within."

Contradiction, p. 8. "That Light is in every man that doth convince of sin, the commandment being accompanied with the Spirit."

Page 9. "There is a time when every man while unregenerated, the best of saints were in darkness; to what then shall such turn within for Light, that have there nothing but darkness-without any Light in them? They have no Light in themthey have none in them, &c."

But in positive contradiction, p. 8. "I shall show what that Light is in every man that doth convince of sin." P. 16. “That Light is in every man that doth convince and reprove him for sin, or that a wicked man upon sins committing, receives checks from the Law written in the heart in creation, is the principal ground of conscience conviction-man being made every way capable of doing the will of his Maker, having the counsel or law of God in his heart-he did not wholly lose his creationlight, for there was still a knowledge left in man of God."

Pages 16, 17, 18, 19. "That Light in every man is the Light of nature, is conscience, is an uncertain guide-How sad will it be for that soul that gives up himself to follow it!"

But in plain contradiction, pages 10, 16, 17. "Christ as he was the Word with God, so he was the Light of the world, and lighteth every man that cometh into the world-The Spirit that God hath placed in man is called the candle of the Lord, the Spirit of understanding;-Every man by Nature having the Law placed in his heart, to wit, the ten commandments, in the substance or body of them-The very heathen that never had the Gospel preached unto them, do witness to this truth."

Page 31. "Oh how do these hell-batched errors that have been fomented by Satan, and twisted into the hearts of these poor and ever-to-be pitied creatures!"

Contradiction, p. 28. "I do much wonder where that word or doctrine was coined, that they so often teach and exhort, that is, to turn to the Light within." Observation. That doctrine then may be founded in Heaven for ought he knows.

Pages 19, 20, 21. "The Scripture is man's rule to walk by— the rule of the Gospel, and compass to rule and steer by-not by the Light within."

Contradiction. "The Spirit doth principle a saint for his duty-the Spirit doth principle and fit a man for his work, both in praying, hearing, and obedience." And page 21: "The reception of the Spirit is the only means to put a man into a capacity for, and give him right to obedience: nothing gives a soul right to Gospel ordinances, but the gift of Christ to us, and his being revealed in, us by his Spirit."

Page 21. "The Scriptures ought to be a rule and weapon, to be made use of at all times in defence against Satan; our dear Lord was filled with the Spirit, yet he had an eye in all his obedience to the Scriptures."

Contradictions, page 22. "The letter itself, as it is written with ink on paper, is dead: but the matter therein is spiritual and powerful, when carried home by the Spirit to the heart." Page 24. "All the Prophets' actions recorded are not all for our example."

Page 34. Christ as he was the Word, which was God, was not a Saviour, but as he was to be the offspring of man." Page 35. "As he was the Word—as he was God he could not save man; for God was the offended, and it was impossible for the offended to acquit the guilty."

Contradictions, page 34. "The Scripture giveth this character of Christ, that he should be called Immanuel, Mat. i. 23. that is to say, God with us, and in Isa. ix. 6. he is called the Mighty God; John. i. 1. he is called the Word-and in this sense is said to come down from Heaven-for as he from the days

of eternity was with the Father, he most properly derived that title of being the Son of God." Heb. vii. 3. 1 John iii. 8.— Page 35. God hath designed that redemption should be purchased by the Son of God."

Observe. In 1 John iii. 8. it is said, the Son of God was manifested that he might destroy the works of the Devil; and is not this to salvation? and Christ says, the Son can do nothing of himself but what he seeth the Father do; and the Father that dwelleth in him he doth the works, John v. 19. and xiv. 10. and that God is Saviour, and none besides him. Isa. xliii. 11. and xlv. 4. Hos. xiii. 4. So what less is it than blasphemy, to say God could not save ?

Page 35. "God by his own blood purchased to himself a Church." Acts xx. 28. But in contradiction to the Apostle herein, William Burnet says: "God hath neither blood, nor suffered."

Page 35. "Where it is said, no man hath been in Heaven, but the Son of Man that came down from Heaven." But in contradiction to Christ, William Burnet says: "Christ's ascribing that to the Godhead, that properly refers to the Manhood, is a stumbling stone."

William Burnet, in his 39th page, says: "This is a gross mistake, to wit, that the blood that cleanseth from sin, is the life of Christ."

Contradiction, page 40. "Christ is the purchaser, and the price his life."

Page 12. "The blood shed upon the Cross, the Material blood, meritorious to salvation, sprinkles the consciences,-~ sanctifieth us, pages 38, 39. Justifies, page 42. Redeems, &c." But in contradiction, page 40, "That blood shed is not in being--"

But he compares it to a price lost, &c.

Observe here a two-fold stress is laid upon that blood. 1. Merit to salvation. 2. Work to sanctification. And so he hath set it up above God: for "God could not save," he says, and "yet it is not in being." Gross absurdity! Whereas sanctification being a real inward work, that is certainly in being which effects it.

Page 24. William Burnet tells of "looking to Jerusalem, to Jesus Christ, as he was there crucified, or to that blood that was there shed for justification." Contradiction, pages 27 and 33. "That Christ that restoreth man's loss, is both to be sought and found in Heaven, viz. above the stars and firmament."

But in contradiction to both, page 21. "The reception of the Spirit the only means-The gift of Christ to us, and his being revealed in us by his Spirit." Observ. Then Christ and his Life is nearer than either Jerusalem, or above the clouds, though he ascended far above all Heavens.

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