The Missing Cross to Purity




Volume 5, The Works of George Fox, Doctrinal Books II, Continued

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A DISTINCTION BETWEEN THE NEW COVENANT AND THE OLD

And how that in the Old Covenant, the Jews' Priests' Lips were to Preserve the Jews' People's Knowledge:

But in the New and Everlasting Covenant, Christ the High Priest, is the treasure of Wisdom and Knowledge, and he fills the Earth with the Knowledge of the Lord God; and the Earth being full of the Knowledge of the Lord God, then there is no want of it in the Earth. And Christ the High Priest, he does not only fill the Earth with the Knowledge of the Lord God, but covers the Earth with the Knowledge of the Lord, as the Waters do the Sea; so the Earth shall not be seen. So then it may be seen that the Substance in the New Covenant, is far beyond the Figure in the Old Covenant.

Read, hear, perceive, and understand, receive and possess.—By G. F.

It is written in the prophecies of Isaiah where speaking of the peaceable kingdom of Christ, that was to come, he said, ‘they shall not hurt, nor destroy in all my holy mountain; for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea.’ Isa 11:9. So this was a prophecy of that day to come; it was not in the days of Isaiah.

*[Clearly his holy mountain is Mount Zion in New Jerusalem, in the dimension of the kingdom of heaven.]

But mark, ‘in that day (when the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea.’) In that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people, to it (namely, this ensign), shall the Gentiles seek, and their rest shall be glorious. Now many of the Gentiles have found this glorious rest, and this ensign; and to this ensign do the people gather, and cannot forsake it; and all the warriors in the world cannot pluck down this ensign, nor take it from the people with their carnal weapons.

Now this is the day of Christ in his new covenant of light, life, and grace, in which the ‘earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters do cover the sea.’ [Mark,] ‘The earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord.’ So then the earth is not empty, when it is ‘full of the knowledge of the Lord.’ And ‘the knowledge of the Lord shall cover the earth;’ it shall not only be full of it, but it shall cover the earth, so that the earth shall not be seen.* ‘As the waters do cover the sea,’ that when you are in the sea you cannot see any land or earth; so shall the knowledge of the Lord be in the new covenant.

*[The earth is not seen because those in the kingdom of heaven walk by the light of the Lord which is much brighter and by which a man sees through the eyes of God from the higher dimension of the kindgom of heaven.]

For the Lord said, ‘I will write my laws in their hearts, and put them in their minds, that they shall not need to say unto one another, know the Lord, for all shall know me from the greatest unto the least. And they shall not need every man to teach his neighbor, saying, know the Lord.’

Now mark, if there be no need to say one unto another, or unto their neighbor, ‘know the Lord,’ (for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord; and the knowledge of the Lord shall cover the earth, as the waters do the sea,’ in the new covenant of light, life, and grace; so that the earth cannot be seen), then there is no need of the priests' or teachers' lips to preserve the people's knowledge; for that was only used in the old covenant under Moses; and while he was read, the people were under the veil. And, therefore, Christ abolished the first priesthood with his veil, who had the tithes for his work and service, whose ‘lips were to preserve the people's knowledge;’ that was the people of the Jews, that particular nation. But Christ in the new covenant is the treasure of wisdom and knowledge; so that in this day of Christ, the root of Jesse shall stand up as an ensign for the people; and the Gentiles shall seek it, namely, the nations, which many have found.

And God has given Christ for a new covenant to the Jews, not according to the old, and for a covenant of light, to enlighten the Gentiles also, who is God's salvation to the ends of the earth; that so in this day of Christ, (and salvation), who is a high priest, holy and harmless, and separate from sinners, made higher than the heavens, who is the treasure of wisdom and knowledge; he takes away the veil of Moses, and takes away the veil and covering that has been spread over all nations.

So it is Christ that fills the earth with knowledge, and that the ‘knowledge of the Lord shall cover the earth, as the waters do the sea;’ so that in this knowledge, to know God and Christ Jesus whom he has sent, is eternal life.

So this high priest, Christ Jesus, his work is beyond the Jews' high priests, whose ‘lips were to preserve the Jewish nation's knowledge;’ for Christ the treasure of wisdom and knowledge, fills the whole earth with knowledge; ‘and covers the earth with the knowledge of God, as the waters cover the sea,’ in his day of the new covenant. Are not these the days of the new covenant, and the gospel, which is not according to the old? Then what will all you priests, (who have been made at schools and colleges), and bishops do in this day, with all your fat bishoprics and parsonages, when people no longer need to be taught by you the knowledge of the Lord; nor the people no longer need to send their children to schools and colleges, to learn there the arts, and how to teach people the knowledge of the Lord, when ‘the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord,’ and covered with it, as the waters do cover the sea, in the days of this new covenant? So then there will be no need of your teachings. And if you come to receive this day in your time, then would not you forsake your fat benefices and parsonages, and return to the people their tithes, and confess that Christ, who is the treasure of wisdom and knowledge, in the new covenant, said, ‘freely you have received, freely give;’ and this commandment of the Lord of lords is not to be broken; and say, there is no need in the new covenant to teach people to know the Lord, no, not ‘from the least to the greatest of them.’ For God has written his law in their hearts, and put it in their minds, in the days of this new covenant; and they are God's people, and he is their God, and they all know him from the greatest to the least of them. So that this new covenant is not according to the Jews' old covenant, among that particular nation of the Jews, who had a tribe of priests and Levites, whose ‘lips were to preserve the people's knowledge,’ for which they had their tithes. But Christ comes in his new covenant, and has taken away the first covenant, and abolished it, and disannulled the commandment that gave him his tithes; and establishes the second and everlasting covenant, where all shall be taught of God, and said to them that declared this new covenant, and preached his gospel, ‘freely you have received, freely give;’ and they were to go and declare this without bag or staff.

So in the new covenant they had no need of purse, silver, bag, or staff; for those who preached the gospel, lived of the gospel. So the gospel of life and salvation is good news and glad tidings, being preached to and in every creature under heaven; and the grace of God, which brings salvation, has appeared unto all men to teach them; and Christ does enlighten every man that comes into the world, with the life in him, the word, by which all things were made to believe in, and to give them knowledge. So this high priest is him, who fills and ‘covers the earth with the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea,’ so that the earth shall not be seen; and so he both ‘gives and preserves the people's knowledge.’ And in these days of Christ, in his new covenant, God pours out his spirit upon all flesh, to instruct, teach, and lead them, by which spirit ‘sons and daughters may prophesy, and the old men may dream dreams, and the young men, and hand-maids, and servants may see visions,’ by the spirit which God has poured upon them, and has given them a spiritual knowledge, and which spirit reveals the things of God unto them, and leads them into all truth. For in the old covenant the Lord poured out his spirit upon the house of Israel, and gave them of his good spirit to instruct them, though they rebelled against it; but in his new covenant, which is not according to the old, he pours out of his spirit not only upon the Jews, but upon all flesh of other nations, as well as the Jews, that all flesh may see the glory of God, and see their salvation. For the Lord said, in Isa 49:26. ‘all flesh shall know, that I, the Lord, am your Saviour and Redeemer, the mighty one of Jacob.’ And again, in Isa 40:4-5. the Lord said, ‘every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be laid low, and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough plain; and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, all flesh shall see it together, for the mouth of the Lord has spoken it.’ And is not this the gospel-day of Christ in his new covenant? Must it not be fulfilled? But your mountains and hills must be laid down, and your crooked ways and natures must be made straight, smooth, and plain, before this glory of the Lord be revealed, and that all flesh come to see it.

In Luke 3:6, it is said, where he speaks of the fulfilling of Isa 40 how ‘all flesh shall see the salvation of God.’ Again, Isa 66:23, the Lord said, ‘all flesh, shall come to worship before me: and in Isa 66:18-19, the Lord said, it shall come to pass, that I will gather all nations and tongues, and they shall come and see my glory, and I will set him for a sign among them,’ speaking of Christ. And the Lord said, ‘his people's wilderness shall be like Eden, and their desert as the garden of the Lord.’ Isa 51:3. And are not these the days of the new covenant, and to be fulfilled?

George Fox

Swarthmore, the 4th  month, 1679

THE MAN CHRIST JESUS THE HEAD OF THE CHURCH,

And true Mediator, in opposition to the Papist Head, their Pope: Prayers to, and for the Dead, their Shaved Crowns, and Saints' Relics, and Purgatory, disproved to be Christian or Judaic, consequently Heathenish or Pagan, by Scripture Testimony.

—By G. F.

For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus...
1 Tim 2:5

Where did ever any, (or where is there any proof, that either in the old world to the flood, or from the flood to the coming of the children of Israel out of Egypt, or from their coming out of Egypt unto Christ, and from Christ all the apostles' days), pray unto the dead, or to saints and angels, as in this night of apostasy since the apostles' days, as the apostates from christianity, called papists do? Or where did ever any go to graves for dead men's bones, or holy relics, (as they are called), in all those ages aforementioned, and say, there was virtue in them to work miracles by, as the papists say they have done, in the apostasy since the apostles' days.

And where did ever any, either in the old world, or since, in the prophets' and apostles' days, pray to any saint; or make any saint a mediator, (but only Christ Jesus), as the papists in the apostasy do?

For does not the Lord say in his law, ‘whosoever touches the dead body of a dead man, and purifies not himself, and defiles the tabernacle of the Lord, that soul shall be cut off from Israel, because the water of separation was not sprinkled upon him? And if a man died in a tent, all that came into the tent and all that was in the tent was unclean seven days; yes, every open vessel that was not covered was unclean, Num 19:11-18, and whosoever touched a dead man that was slain with the sword in the field; or a bone of a man, or a grave, shall be unclean seven days. And the water of purification was to go upon them:’ now seven is perfect; so the perfection was to go upon them before they were made clean again.

After the children of Israel had been at battle with the Midianites, Moses told them, ‘abide without the camp seven days: and whosoever touched any slain, they were to purify themselves, and to purify their raiments,’ as in Num 31:19-24. Yes, all their gold and silver, brass, iron, tin, and lead, which they had taken from the unclean heathen, they were to make it go through the fire, and then it should be clean; and it must be purified by ‘water of separation; for that which could not abide to go through the fire must go through the water.’

And said the Lord, ‘you shall wash your clothes, and after seven days you shall be clean, and then come into the Lord's camp.

Now if the war in the old covenant was to be so holy and clean, and all the people were to be so holy and clean; then what is the spiritual war in the new covenant? Must not perfection go upon everyone, before they can be clean, to enter into God's camp? Must not their inward clothing be washed, as they washed the outward? Must they not pass through the fire of his baptism, and holy water of his word, before they can come into the camp of God, and to his tabernacle? For the seventh day was a day of washing and of purifying in the old covenant, yes, himself and his clothes. And if he did not wash himself and his clothes, if he touched a grave, or a dead man's bone, or been in a tent where a dead man lay, or had been in the war where dead men were; if he did not purify himself, he was to be cut off from the congregation; because he had defiled the tabernacle of the Lord, and the water of separation had not been sprinkled upon him.

And therefore, if they were to be so clean and holy in the old covenant, with these outward washings; much more ought they to be clean in the new covenant, with the heavenly washings, with the holy water of the word; and if they are not washed with this water of the word, and the blood of Jesus, are they not cut off from the holy and clean congregation, and from God's tabernacle spiritually in the new covenant? For God set his outward tabernacle in his congregation, in the old covenant. Levit 26:11. But God sets the heavenly tabernacle among his holy and clean congregation, in the new covenant, that he has congregated together with his spirit. And therefore, all they now that run to graves for dead men's bones, and call them relics, and pretend to do miracles by them; are they not below the law of God in the old covenant, and defilers of that tabernacle, and cut off from the congregation of the old covenant? And then are they much more far off the congregation of the new covenant; though in words they may profess it.

And the Lord said, ‘every leper, and everyone that has an issue, or is defiled by the dead, whether male or female, shall be put out of his camp, that they should not defile his camp,’ Num 5:1-3, as Miriam was put out seven days for her leprosy and disobedience. For, said the Lord, ‘I will dwell in the midst of you.’

So see what a care of holiness and cleanness was to be in the camp of the old covenant; much more in the new, of inward leprosies and issues, who are defiled by dead Adam, they must be purified by the water of the word, and the blood of Jesus the second Adam, before they can come into his holy camp. And who have been in the spiritual war, with the spiritual wickedness, if that they have touched the dead, or his bone, or his grave, they are defiled, until they be purified by the water of the living word, which was before the dead was, or his bone or grave either: for the Lord said, ‘touch not the unclean thing, and I will receive you.’ 2 Cor 6:17.

David said, ‘the heavens are the Lord's, but the earth he has given to the children of men. The dead praise not the Lord, neither any that go down into silence.’ Psa 115:16-17. Then why should any ask counsel of the dead, and pray unto the dead, if they praise not the Lord? Again, ‘David said, the slain that lie in the grave God remembers no more, they are cut off from his hand.’ Psa 88:5.

And therefore, how can the dead be mediators? Are not those dead in sins and trespasses, those who run to the graves for dead men's bones and call them holy relics?

And again, David said, ‘those who join themselves to Baal Peor eat the sacrifices of the dead; and the dead praise not the Lord.’ Psa 106:28.

So here you may see those who joined to Baal Peor, did not join to the Lord, nor sacrifice to him, but such were dead from the Lord, and did eat the sacrifices of the dead. And are not all those who profess themselves christians in the new covenant as dead, that either pray or offer to the dead? No, are they not worse and more dark than they, because they profess a higher and greater thing, than they in the old covenant?

And David said, ‘you shall guide me with your counsel, and after receive me into glory.’ Psa 73:24.

So here you may see, all must be guided by God's counsel, if they will be received into glory; and not be guided by the counsel of the dead, but by the counsel of the living God; ‘but such as forget the works of the Lord, they wait not for his counsel to be guided by it. Psa 106:13. And Isaiah said, ‘let the counsel of the Holy One of Israel draw near, and come that we may know it.’ Isa 5:19.

And so, these waited for counsel from God, and not from the dead. And did not the apostate Jews in the days of Isaiah, seek unto wizards and familiar spirits, that peeped and muttered? and were not all those judged in the old law? and are they not much more in the days of the gospel, the power of God? for does not Isaiah say, ‘when they shall say unto you, ask counsel of them that have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep and mutter: then make them this answer, is there a people any where that asks not counsel of their God, should men run to the dead from the living.’

And therefore, he said further, ‘to the law and to the testimony, if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light or morning in them.’ Isa 8:20.

Now here it may be seen, there were some that taught this doctrine to seek after, and unto wizards and familiar spirits; and therefore, the prophet thought strange for the living to seek to the dead; and therefore, such were dark, and had no morning in them, that were gone both from the law and testimony.

Has not God given Christ to be a counselor, and are not all to ask counsel of him, and so not of any dead saint?

And the Lord said, ‘his people asked counsel of their stocks, and their staff has declared to them, and burn incense upon hills under oaks, and sacrifice with harlots, the spirit of whoredom having caused them to err. And this was when they were gone a whoring from God in the old covenant; and these were the people that were gone from the counsel of the Lord, and from true understanding; therefore, the Lord said they should fall. Hosea 4:12,14.

And has not the spirit of whoredom caused them to err, that ask counsel of painted pieces of wood and images? and that pray before the dead pictures and images? Those who do so now, know not the thoughts of the Lord, neither understand they his counsel, no more than the apostate Jews did of old.

Christ counseled the Laodiceans, saying, ‘I counsel you to buy of me gold tried in the fire,’ ... Rev 3:18. And therefore, all are to take and ask Christ's counsel for this gold. Paul said unto the church, ‘he had declared unto them all the counsel of God.’ Acts 20:27. And never did the apostle in all the counsel of God (that he had declared), say, that it was the ‘counsel of God,’ that they should set up images, or pray to saints, or go to the graves of the saints for their bones, or set up any saint to be a mediator after they are deceased; or set up crosses, that they should bow before them, or to the images of saints, or pray to the dead; or that the priests or ministers of Christ should shave their heads. He declared no such counsel from God, in all his epistles and preachings.

In Jer 49:20, he exhorted them there to hear the counsel of the Lord; and the Lord said, ‘woe unto the rebellious children that take counsel, but not of me; that cover with a covering, but not of my spirit, that they may add sin to sin.’ Isa 30:31.

So these are rebellious children, that take not counsel of the Lord, and cover not with his spirit; such go down to Egypt for strength, and not to the Lord; and therefore, woe proceeds against them in the old covenant, much more in the new covenant, that take not counsel of Christ, whom God has given for a counselor, ‘the Prince of peace.’ Isa 9:6.

But there were people in the old covenant, that professed it, and lived not in it. And so there is now a people that profess the new covenant, and yet live not in it, that set at naught God's and Christ's counsel, ‘and would none of his reproof.’ Prov 1:30. For the Lord said, ‘they would have none of my counsel, they despised all my reproof.’ And these are such as hate knowledge, and choose not the fear of the Lord; and therefore, shall they eat the fruit of their own ways, and be filled with their own devices, and so not with the treasure of life.

And Judah, when they kept in the fear of the Lord, they gathered themselves together to ask counsel of the Lord in the days of Jehoshaphat, and the Lord was their counselor. 2 Chron 20:4. So they did not go to ask counsel of the witch to raise up dead Samuel, as Saul did, when he had disobeyed the Lord. So Saul that disobeyed, and went to the witch to ask counsel of the dead, and not of the Lord, he had no victory; but those who asked counsel of the Lord, they had the victory.

You may see those who asked counsel of the Lord, whether their way was to be prosperous or not. Judges 20:23-46. So they did not go to ask counsel of the dead.

Christ said, ‘whatsoever things you shall ask in prayer, believing, you shall receive.’ But they must ask of God through him. Mat 21:22.

Christ said, ‘whatsoever you shall ask in my name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son; and if you shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.’ John 14:13.

So here it is clear, that all the true christians must ask in Christ's name; and he has taught so, and exhorted to it, and not in any saint's name, or angel.

Christ exhorts again, saying, ‘ask, and it shall be given you; and everyone that asks receives.’ Mat 7:7-8. And Martha's faith was so firm, that she said, ‘she knew whatsoever Christ asked of God, he would give it.’ John 11:22.

So here you may see, Christ was the counselor, in whose name people were to ask in the new covenant; and God's people in the old covenant were forbidden using enchantments, or observing of times; and were forbidden having regard to wizards, or seeking after familiar spirits, ‘for I am the Lord your God;’ and him they were to seek unto, (said the Lord.) And likewise in the old covenant the Lord forbids his people from making any cuttings in the flesh, or prints, or marks upon them for the dead. Lev 19:28, ‘for they were to be an holy people’ in the old covenant, so much more in the new.

And the Lord said, ‘you shall not make baldness upon your heads, nor make any cuttings in your flesh.’

Now the Lord did forbid his people from doing these things in the old covenant, so much more in the new. And therefore, all you that shave your heads, and make them bald, and make cuttings in your flesh with whips or otherwise, are not you judged by the law of God, to be out of the practice of the old covenant? So are you short of the new, in the practice of the heathen, and not in the practice of the old covenant nor new?

Object. And now if any of you should object, that Paul shaved his head after he was a christian. Acts 21.

Answer. The cause of that act of his, was this: there was a report among the Jews, that he taught against the law of Moses, and was against circumcision; and therefore, James and the elders did advise Paul, saying unto him, ‘purify yourself, and shave your head,’ and the rest that were with him, that they might seem to walk orderly according to the law of Moses: and this they desired him to do, that they might say, ‘here is four men which have a vow upon them.’ And Paul did so, with the rest that were with him; and those who were with him, entered into the temple to signify the accomplishment of the days of purification, until an offering should be offered for everyone of them, and then the apostle standing up among them, pleading his cause when they were offering up an offering for him, against whom he said they had nothing except for this one vow, touching the resurrection of the dead, touching which, said the apostle, ‘I am called in question of you this day.’ Acts 24:21.

So, though the apostle did condescend to the Jews, to shave his head, and purify himself. Acts 21:24, Num 6:13,18. Yet when they came to offer an offering for him, he was made to trample down all that he did in that thing, and to preach Christ the resurrection, who was the offering once for all.

And his so yielding to their weakness, was the means of his being taken prisoner, and like to have been killed also, by his persecutors, the Jews; and so he was tossed up and down, until he was brought prisoner to Rome. But the command of the Lord was, ‘that they should not shave their heads, but only trim them;’ and therefore there is an express command of God against shaving of their heads. Eze 44:20.

Now Paul shaving of his head under a vow, was according to the Nazarites shaving of their heads under a vow. Acts 18:18. For all the days of their separation, there was ‘no razor to come upon their heads,’ neither were they to come near any dead body, no, not so much as their father or mother, sister or brother; for the ‘consecration of his God was upon his head;’ and if a man died suddenly by him, he defiled his head of consecration; and then he was to shave his head in the seventh day of his cleansing.

And again, Num 6:18, ‘the Nazarite shall shave his head at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, and shall take the hair of his head of his separation, and shall put it into the fire, which is under the sacrifice of his peace-offering.’ So this was the law of God to the Nazarites, who were under a vow ‘to shave their heads,’ else by the law of God, the priests were not to shave their heads, as may be seen in Eze 44.

So, for priests to shave their heads, is neither a gospel command, nor law of God, except such as were under a vow, as before said.

But do all the priests, and others, that shave their heads now, do it as under the vow of the Nazarites? Do they not come near any dead, however so near a kin? When they shave their heads, do they shave them at the ‘door of the tabernacle of the congregation,’ the place of shaving? And do they burn their hair under the sacrifice of the peace-offering? And if so, do not they deny Christ come in the flesh, who has ‘offered up himself once for all,’ and who cleanses with his blood, and washes with the water of his word; with which they must be cleansed, before they can come into his tabernacle and congregation.

So shaving of heads, to priests and others, and making bald their heads, was forbidden by the law of God, except it was such as were under the vow before-mentioned, and the Nazarites: and when they did shave their heads for their separation, they were to burn it under the sacrifice of the peace-offering, as before said. And this shaving of these Nazarites, and those under this vow, it was to be done before the ‘door of the tabernacle of the congregation,’ and not in a private house. So this was the cause of the shaving of heads; else the law of God was against it, by which the priests were not to shave their heads. Eze 44:20.

[Comment: There are many who think the Bible is not to be trusted because it may have been corrupted by translation errors or even deliberately falsified to support the religious powers that were in control at the time. But as this letter demonstrates, the Roman Sect did not bother to change anything that conflicted with their doctrines, they simply ignored it. Bowing and praying to statues, praying to dead people as mediators to God, shaved heads, and relics from the dead, and forbidding marriage and meat on Fridays all conflict with the commands in the Bible.

And the Roman Catholics were just the first. The Protestants also simply ignore all the exclusions, the requirements, and the qualifying conditions, specified in the scriptures. Martin Luther's doctrine of instant sainthood and salvation by instant belief and grace was formulated by him deliberately invalidating the books of Hebrews, James, Jude, Revelation, and Esther, because they conflicted with his instant salvation, which theory was universally adopted by Protestant Christendom.

The worst of both the Protestants and Catholics was their killing and torture of those who had a different religious opinion. Christ's reply to his disciples when they wished to punish the people who would not listen to him, severely rebuking them with: You do not know what manner of spirit you are of [as in the devil's]. Jesus further said that if someone is violating the standards of the church, (sinning), they are supposed to be warned by one, then warned by two or three, then censured by the whole body of believers, - and if they fail to repent of their error, they are supposed to be expelled and shunned - not killed, or imprisoned, or tortured, or stripped of their property. We are supposed to love and pray for our enemies, not destroy them. Yet, as prophesied in the Bible, Christendom killed and tortured throughout the centuries:

I saw the woman (the false church) drunk with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus. Rev 17:6 The Roman sect's Inquisitions stands as history's greatest act of brutality committed in the name of religion. But it was all predicted in the Bible's Book of Revelation: the whore was drunk with the blood of the saints. The Roman sect's inquisitions and slaughters took place throughout Europe during the Middle Ages (800 AD to 1500 AD), in which nine million souls were put to death, accused of witchcraft. The Roman sect's methods and numbers of killing and torture make the 20th Century Nazis look like amateurs. Those intelligent enough to have seen the barbarity and falseness of the Roman religion quickly died from torture. The still-lauded pillars of the Roman faith, Augustine and Thomas, approved and supported such murders in writing; unrepudiated, they stand as testimony to the continued depravity of the Roman Catholic sect.

Following in the footsteps of their murdering mother, the Protestants killed and murdered throughout Europe too. John Calvin was an early Protestant founder venerated by Presbyterians, Congregationalists, Baptists, even influencing the Lutherans; Calvin participated in the burning at the stake of Michael Sevetus plus thirty four women also burned at the stake. The founder of the Episcopal sect, Henry VIII, had 72,000 people killed, mostly Roman Catholics. The Peasants War in Germany, led by Luther-inspired religious despots, killed 100,000 of the nobility and Roman Catholics. Between 1650-1700, the Episcopalians, Presbyterians, Baptists, and Congregationalists of England and America  imprisoned over ten thousand Quakers and killed over 869 Quakers including three Quaker men and one woman hung in Boston by the Bible-believing Puritans. The beast was given power to overcome the saints. The false church, the whore of Babylon, was drunk with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus.

Martin Luther also set the stage for the Nazi persecution of the Jews. Luther advocated setting Jewish synagogues on fire, destroying Jewish prayer books, forbidding rabbis from preaching, seizing Jews' property and money, smashing up their homes, and ensuring that these "poisonous envenomed worms" be forced into labor or expelled "for all time;" he also seemed to sanction their murder, writing: "We are at fault in not slaying them."

The early Quakers (1648-1730) were the first, (after the death of the early church in 388 AD), to again embrace all the scriptures and to receive the promises of being delivered from sin, cleansing, perfection, purity, holiness, union with God, and entrance into the Kingdom of Heaven while on earth.]

And the Lord commanded Moses ‘to take the Levites from among the children of Israel, and cleanse them;’ and they were to ‘shave their flesh, and wash their clothes.’ And when they were cleansed, they offered a young bullock for a meat-offering, and another bullock for a sin-offering; and then Aaron offered the Levites before the Lord, for an ‘offering for the children of Israel, that they might execute the service of the Lord.’ So here you may see, all the Levites must be washed and cleansed, and they must offer up for themselves before they could be offered up to the Lord; and then they might offer the clean offerings for the people.

So they were not fit for the service of the Lord, until they were cleansed, Num 8:6. And so the Levites were separated from the children of Israel, and the Lord said, ‘they are mine.’ And now this Levitical priesthood being changed, and the law also, by which they were made, with all its services, and shavings, and washings, and sprinklings, and the commandment disannulled that gave him his tithes, by Christ Jesus: and so the Levitical priesthood is not to be followed by the true christians; but Christ is to be followed, who came not after the order of Aaron, but of the tribe of Judah, who is to be followed and heard in all things.

Now, making baldness on the head, was a judgment to some, as you may see in Micah 1:16. For the Lord said, ‘I will turn your feasts into mourning, and your songs into lamentation, and I will bring sackcloth upon your loins, and baldness upon every head.’Amos 8:10. So that baldness was the judgment which the Lord brought upon them. ‘and they shall cast dust upon their heads, and wallow themselves in ashes; and they shall make themselves utterly bald.’ Eze 27:30-31, 7:17-18, ‘all hands shall be feeble, and all knees shall be weak as water: they shall gird themselves with sackcloth, and horror shall cover them, and shame shall be upon all faces, and baldness shall be upon all their heads.’ In Jer 48:37. ‘every head shall be bald, and every beard shall be clipped, and upon all hands shall be cuttings, and upon all loins sackcloth,’ ... So here their baldness was a judgment upon them, there was so great a lamentation. Iin Isa 22:12. ‘in that day did the Lord of hosts call to weeping, to mourning, to baldness, and to girding with sackcloth.’ Again, in Isa 15:2, was not misery the cause of their baldness there? In Isa 3:24, when he had reckoned up the vanities of the children of Israel, and reproved them; he told them, that ‘instead of well-set hair, they should have baldness, and instead of a stomacher, a girdle of sackcloth,’ &c. In Job 1:20, when he was in his trials, sufferings, and misery, he ‘rent his mantle and shaved his head,’ &c.

So this manner of shaving heads, was sometimes as a judgment, and sometimes through trials and troubles. There also was another case and example of the women's shaving their heads: when a young woman who was not of the Jews, was taken captive, if a man was to marry her, she was to ‘shave her head, and pare her nails, &c. and put off her captive raiment, and bewail her father and mother a whole month,’ and then a Jew in the old covenant might marry her. Deu 21:12-13.

Now, concerning the law of cleansing of lepers, those who were to be cleansed, were to wash their clothes, and shave off all their hair, and wash themselves in water, Lev 14:8-11, ‘on the seventh day he shall shave all the hair off his head, and his beard, and his eye-brows; even all his hair he shall shave off, and shall wash his clothes, and his flesh he shall wash in water and shall be clean, and the eighth day the priest shall offer two lambs without blemish for him.’ So here you may see the ground of the lepers' shaving of their heads, &c. in the old covenant: but you may see by the law of God, they were not to make baldness upon their heads, Lev 21:5, saying in express words, ‘you shall not make baldness upon your heads, nor cuttings in your flesh.’ And in Eze 44:20, there it was said, ‘the priests were not to shave their heads.’ So here was an express command of God against the priest's shaving of their heads; though in some cases, as before said, there was the use of shaving in the old covenant. But where did ever Christ, who sent forth the apostles, give a command, that they should shave their heads? Or where did ever the apostles, after Christ, give any such command in the church? Let us see an order for it from Christ and his apostles, you who plead [the priest shaving of his head as an] antiquity, and then it will be seen how far short your practice of shaving [heads] reaches to the apostles' days.

Concerning asking counsel of the dead: they were not to make themselves bald for the dead, nor defile themselves with the dead. Lev 21:1. The sons of Aaron were expressly forbidden, ‘they shall not make baldness upon their heads,’ as before said, Lev 21:5. For whatsoever they touched, that was unclean, they were to wash themselves and to purify themselves. And the Lord said, ‘you are the children of the Lord your God, you shall not cut yourselves, nor make baldness between your eyes for the dead, for you are an holy people unto the Lord your God, for I have chosen thee to be a peculiar people unto the Lord your God, above all nations that are upon the earth.’ Deu 14:1-2.

The high priest was not to go to any dead body to defile himself, neither to his father nor his mother; neither was he to uncover his head or rent his clothes. Lev 21:10-11. And generally throughout all the scriptures, it may be seen how people were to pray unto the Lord, and not to any saint; for they were commanded to ‘pray unto the Lord for the peace of the city.’ Jer 29:7. And in Job 33:26, there it is said, ‘pray unto the Lord,’ ...

And a multitude of scriptures might be brought both in the Old and New Testament, how that people were to ‘pray unto the Lord, and hearken unto his voice;’ and no where in all the scriptures can it be found, that they were required to pray unto any, but God and Christ, in whose name alone, whatsoever his people asked, it should be given unto them.

In Pro 21:16, you may see, there were congregations of the dead; ‘for,’ said he, ‘the man that wanders out of the way of understanding shall remain in the congregation of the dead.’ And these that remain in the congregation of the dead, are wandered both out of the way of the old covenant, and the way of the new convenant, and from the light and spirit of Christ, which gives the knowledge and understanding of Christ, their way to God. And these congregations of the dead can only offer the unsalted and unsavory sacrifice to the dead. And in Ecc 9:5-6, it is said, ‘for the living know that they shall die, but the dead know not any thing, neither have they any more reward; for the memory of them is forgotten; also, their love, and their hatred, and their envy is now perished; neither have they any more a portion forever in anything that is done under the sun.’ Then what good do your prayers to them do for the dead, if they know nothing, and have no more a portion forever, in anything that is done under the sun?

Did the angel not say, ‘why do seek the living among the dead?’ So the living is not to be sought for among the dead. Did the angel not say, ‘he is risen,’ to them that so sought Christ? Luke 24:5-6. And Christ is a judge of the quick and dead, who said, ‘come unto me, that you may have life.’ So people are not to seek to the dead, but to Christ, who is ‘alive and lives for evermore.’ 2 Tim 4:1, Rev 1:18. And does not the Lord say, ‘look unto me, all you ends of the earth, and be saved.’ So they are not then to look unto the dead to be saved, but to Christ. And ‘none comes to the Son, but whom the Father draws.’ And, ‘God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son into the world, that whosoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.’

And you may see how the Jews, after they went from the covenant of God, and disobeyed his commands, then they made a covenant with death, and were at an agreement with hell, like the apostate christians, who are gone out of the new covenant of light, life, and grace. And then like the Jews that forsook the old covenant, they make lies their refuge, and under falsehood they hide themselves, making covenants with the pope and his substitutes, for the pardon of their sins, past, present, and to come; who thereby endeavor to make void Christ's pardon and forgiveness. But your covenant with death shall be disannulled, and your agreement with hell shall not stand; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, then shall you be trodden down by it, as the rebellious Jews were of old.

And those who have made a covenant with death, and an agreement with hell, in the time of the new covenant, or old, they can offer and sacrifice nothing, but what they have out of hell and death, to that which they have made a covenant withal. And are not all the enchanters, sorcerers, and charmers, forbidden by the old covenant? and were not the astrologers, star-gazers, and monthly prognosticators, reckoned among them? See Isa 47:12-13. where the Lord said, ‘you are wearied in the multitude of your counsels; let now the astrologers and star-gazers, the monthly prognosticators stand up and save thee from these things, that shall come upon thee: behold, they shall be stubble, the fire shall burn them, they shall not deliver themselves from the power of the flame.’

Therefore, God's people are not to trust in such things, nor follow such things in the time of the old covenant nor new. And what could all the Egyptians or Babylonian sorcerers do to Pharaoh or to Nebuchadnezzar's dream? did not God bring all their counsels to naught? Therefore, all astrologers, sorcerers, enchanters, and witches were forbidden all along, as may be seen in the scriptures; and makers of images and idols, or the likeness of anything in heaven or in earth; all those things are forbidden by the Lord God to be made, served, bowed to, or worshipped; for these were the practices of the heathen, and not of the people of God, in the old covenant nor in the new. For God will ‘frustrate the tokens of the liars, and make the diviners mad, and turns he wisdom of the wise backward, and makes their knowledge foolishness: yet God confirms the word of his servants, and performs the counsel of his messengers.’ Isa 44:25-26. And the Lord God said, ‘you shall not use enchantment, nor observe times.’ Lev 19:26,37, ‘But you shall observe my statutes, said the Lord: ror those who observe lying vanities, forsake their own mercy.’ Jonah 2:8. And the apostle forbids ‘observing of days, months, and times,’ Gal 4:11, and said, ‘he was afraid of them, for fear that he had bestowed his labors of such in vain.’ And Christ tells the Jews, that were in the observation of such things, Luke 17:20, ‘the kingdom of God does not comes with visible sign or observation.’

So those who are in the observation of such things, and look to find the kingdom of God in these things, cannot receive it.

And you may see, that they who forsook the Lord, and observed times, used enchantments, and dealt with familiar spirits and wizards; and such, at the last, sacrificed their children in the fire, and wrought much wickedness in the sight of the Lord, and provoked him to anger. And these run into the making of graven images and idols to worship, and bowed down to them, and the gods of their own making, like the heathen, who forsook God and his covenant. 2 Kings 21:2-7.

There was not to be found among God's people in the old covenant any that used divination, or an enchanter, or a witch, or an observer of times, or a charmer, or consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or necromancer, or such an one as made his son or daughter to pass through the fire; for all these things were forbidden by the Lord; and all these things are an abomination to the Lord: ‘and because of these abominations the Lord your God has driven them out from before thee; for these nations, that you shall possess, hearkened unto observers of times, and diviners. But as for thee, the Lord your God has not suffered thee so to do; you shall be perfect with the Lord your God. For the Lord your God will raise up a prophet unto thee out of the midst of thee, and unto him shall they hearken,’ (speaking of Christ in the new covenant, like Moses in the old), and in this prophet (that God raises up), Christ Jesus, he will put words in his mouth, and he shall speak unto his people in the new covenant all that God commands him, as Moses did in the old: who was faithful in his house in the old covenant, as Christ is faithful in his house in the new: ‘and whosoever will not hearken unto my words, said the Lord, which he (namely, Christ), shall speak in my name, I will require it of him:’ as Moses did speak from the mouth of the Lord in the old covenant; and those that did not hearken unto his words, and obey them in the old covenant, the Lord required it of them.’ Deut 18:10-19.

And God's people were forbidden by the Lord in the old covenant, saying, ‘you shall not print any marks upon your bodies, for it was the works of the heathen.’ Lev 19. And as the Lord's people were forbidden in the old covenant to serve any of the gods of the nations, and their manner of living, ways, worships and religions; so surely much more are they forbidden in the new covenant, under Christ the great prophet, as you may see throughout the scriptures.

And you may see the express command of God against images, likenesses, and figures. Deu 4. The Lord commanded Moses in the old covenant, to teach the Jews his statutes and judgments, that they might do them; and bid them take heed unto themselves, saying, ‘you saw no manner of similitude in that day when the Lord spoke unto you in Horeb, out of the midst of the fire:’ therefore, they seeing no similitude that day, ‘you shall not make any graven image, nor the similitude of any figure, likeness of male or female, or the likeness of any beast of the earth: or the likeness of any winged fowl in the air; or the likeness of any creeping thing on the ground; or the likeness of any fish in the waters.’

Thus you may see, that they were forbidden making any likeness of anything in heaven or earth, for fear that at the last they should come to worship the host of heaven.

Here you may see, they were not only forbidden the worshipping of such things, but the making the likeness of them by the express command of God. But oh! How full of these images and likenesses are the houses of these called christians, which were forbidden in the old covenant? So that it has become a trade among such christians to make such things, which the Jews in the old covenant were forbidden; which they in the new covenant should much more not do; instead they should be applying their minds, ears, and eyes to Christ, the great prophet, and hearken unto him, who renews them up into the image of God.

Now concerning purification, purging, and cleansing: if the Lord had intended a purgatory after people are dead to purge them in, which the scripture no where speaks of, what needed all these purifications in the time of the law? Num 19:9, 2 Chron 30:19, Neh 12:45, Lev 15:13, Num 8:21, Lev 12:4, and many other scriptures might be instanced concerning purification and purifying.

And in Mal 3:3, ‘he shall sit as a purifier, and a refiner by fire, purging the sons of Levi: and is like a refiner's fire, and fuller's soap.’ Now, is not this refining and purging of people to be while they are upon the earth? but when they are dead, and gone into purgatory? God and his people do not say so.

And you that talk of a purgatory to purge and refine you in after you are dead, have not you forgotten all these scriptures, how that Christ by himself has purged our sins? Heb 1:3, ‘and he his own self bore our sins in his own body on the tree, that we being dead to sin, should live unto righteousness.’ 1 Peter 2:24. Mark, those lived unto righteousness, which were dead unto sin; and so the apostle did not teach people to look for a purgatory, when they were dead. And how can it be said, that you are dead to sin, and that Christ bore your sins in his own body on the tree, when that you look for a purgatory to be cleansed in after you are dead? The apostle told the saints, while they were upon the earth, ‘you have purified your souls, in obeying the truth, through the spirit.’ 1 Pet 1:22. So these true christians need not look for a purgatory. And John said, ‘if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, then have we fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanses us from all sin.’ So mark, he was the cleanser from all sin; so they needed not a purgatory. Those who are not cleansed from all sin, are those who do not walk in the light, as Christ is in the light; and such in their darkness may imagine a purgatory to cleanse them in, and Christ has appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. And the apostle said, ‘it is appointed unto men once to die, and after this to come to judgment.’ Heb 9:27. So he does not say, they are appointed for purgatory, but for judgment.

And the apostle said in his general epistle, to the christians in his day; ‘forasmuch as you know, that you are not redeemed with corruptible things, neither with silver and gold, from your vain conduct, but with the precious blood of Jesus Christ.’ 1 Pet 1:18.

Now consider this, you that plead antiquity, and that pretend to pardon people's sins, and give them indulgences for their sins for corruptible things, as silver and gold, have not you made the blood of Christ of no effect? Have you not made people to believe a lie, who buy your pardons and indulgences for their sins? You then tell them of a purgatory when they are dead, and keep them in their vain conduct, when they are living: and so out of the catholic faith, and the true knowledge of the true christians in the primitive times, who knew that they were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, but with the precious blood of Christ Jesus.

And did not Christ say to the believing thief, ‘this day you shall be with me in paradise?’ and you will belie the scriptures, if you say, that it was a purgatory. And Christ said, that ‘he purges,’ every branch that bears fruit, that it may bring forth more fruit; and that branch which does not bear fruit, he takes it away; so Christ is the purger. And he said to his disciples, that they were clean through his word: so not through a purgatory, after they were dead. John 15.

And as John the Baptist declares, how that Christ should come after him; and said, ‘he shall baptize you with fire, and the Holy Ghost; and he shall thoroughly purge the floor, and burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire, and gather the wheat into his garner.’

Now all you that plead for a purgatory to be purged and purified in, do not you deny the baptism of Christ to purge you with his fire and Holy Ghost? and to purge out the old leaven of the old Adam and the devil, who has got in by transgression since Adam fell? for all this purging, purifying, washing, and cleansing is to Adam and Eve, and their sons and daughters, since they fell from the image of righteousness and holiness, that God Almighty made them in. So Christ the second Adam, that never fell, nor sinned, who had no guile in his mouth, is the purger and cleanser of all his people with his blood and baptism, and circumciser with his spirit, in putting off the body of death, and sins of the flesh, which are gotten up into man and woman by transgression; for they had not this body of death and sin before they fell, when God Almighty made them in his image and likeness.

And so it is the blood of Christ that ‘purges the conscience from dead works, to serve the living God.’ Heb 9:14. So no purgatory because it is the blood of Christ, that cleanses from all sin.

But if you have forgotten this purger, and so have invented another, namely, a purgatory, you must not plead your antiquity from the apostles for that; but from the false conceptions of your apostatized bishops and popes, and through your long continuance in your blindness, who have wanted the true knowledge, and temperance, and patience, and godliness, and true brotherly-kindness, to your fellow-creatures, and the true love that Christ taught to his disciples, to ‘love all men.’

This catholic* love you have lacked; and therefore, have you massacred, killed, and persecuted so many upon the account of religion, and have forgotten what would purge away your sins, namely, the blood of Christ. And therefore, have you imagined a purgatory after death, and taught this for a doctrine among people instead of the blood of Christ Jesus: read 2 Pet 1:1-9. And therefore, come to that which will purify your hearts from your double-mindedness, and take the apostle James's advice, in James 4:1-8. ‘that your minds may be single to Christ.’ For the apostle said, ‘Christ, who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, [mark, from all iniquity,] and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.’

*catholic - originally was a term for the true Christian church, (the purified body of Christ made up of living stones). This term was appropriated by the Roman sect, claiming to be the true Christian church.

The apostle exhorts Titus; ‘these things speak and teach, exhort and rebuke with all authority.’ So he was to rebuke all such that taught a doctrine contrary to this. So no man's iniquity or sin (it is clear), can be pardoned by men's indulgences, neither can any man be redeemed from them by any gold or silver, or any other corruptible thing; and those who think they can, set up another pardoner and forgiver than God and Christ Jesus; which is an antichrist, as you may see, 2 Thes 2:4, and are to be rebuked; for the Lord said, ‘I will pardon all their iniquities. Jer 33:8. ‘Christ has washed us from our sins, in his own blood.’ Rev 1:5. Their garments were made white in the blood of the Lamb.’ Rev 7:14. The saints overcame by the blood of the Lamb. Rev 12:11. The apostle tells the Ephesians, through what they had redemption, which was through the blood of Christ Jesus. Eph 1:7. Does he not tell the Colossians the same? who said, ‘in whom we have redemption through his blood, even the release from th bondage of our sins. Col 1:14. So away with all the pope's forgiveness, and selling of pardons, and purgatories.

[The sale of indulgences was so rampant in the Roman sect that: Johann Tetzel wrote "As soon as the coin in the coffer rings, the soul from purgatory [also attested as 'into heaven'] springs." These are Babylon's merchants of the earth becoming rich, selling salvation, selling redemption, trafficking in souls. This was a major source of enormous sums of money, contributing to the Roman sect owning 40% of all the property in Europe at the beginning of the reformation.]

Yes, the apostle tells the Ephesians, ‘you who sometimes were afar off, are now brought near by the blood of Christ.’

So it is the blood of Christ, that made the saints near then, and makes the saints near to God now; which blood does redeem, and wash, and cleanse, and purify from all sin. And ‘Christ having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments, containing ordinances, and so broken down the partition-wall between Jews and Gentiles, to make to himself of both Jews and Gentiles, (of these twain), one new man: so making peace, that he might reconcile them unto God, in one body through the blood of his cross; to reconcile all things unto himself, whether things in heaven, or things in earth; having slain the enmity thereby, Eph 2:14-22. The gospel of peace was preached to them that were afar off, and them that were near; and Christ the foundation for Jews and Gentiles to build upon; who was the prophets' and apostles' foundation, the chief corner-stone in God's house. So you may see, it is said, ‘who has reconciled us unto himself, by Jesus Christ: and God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their transgressions unto them.’ 2 Cor 5:18-19. So it is clear, here was no purgatory after death, spoken of to wash, purify, or cleanse people in, but it was through Christ Jesus only.

And all that look for a purgatory after they are dead, are not of that true catholic faith, which the apostles were in, and true church in the primitive times; which true faith Jesus is the author of. For those who receive the end of this catholic faith, receive the salvation of their souls. 1 Pet 1:9.

So here is no purgatory; and where a purgatory is pleaded for, the end of this faith is not received. Faith is the victory over that which separated man from God, by which faith he has access to God, and by it pleases God. It is faith that sanctifies. Acts 26:18. So they need not have a purgatory, if they are in this catholic faith; and those who tell people of a purgatory, are out of the sanctifying and saving faith. The saints' hearts were purified by faith; and this was the doctrine the apostle preached, to the primitive christians' church. Acts 15:9. And those who tell people of a purgatory to purge them in, are erred from this catholic purifying faith. The righteous shall and do live by this purifying, sanctifying faith. Heb 1:4, Rom 1:17. This faith which Christ is the author and finisher of, did justify and purify the church then, and the saints now; by which faith being justified, they had peace with God, this divine, holy, and precious catholic faith. So those who imagine a purgatory to cleanse them in, and thereby, or therein expect to be cleansed, purged, or justified, are out of this catholic faith; for the apostle said, ‘being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.’

So by faith, God's people stood, and they walked by faith, and not by sight; and they lived by the faith of the Son of God, which faith the Son of God was the author and finisher of; this holy, precious, divine, purifying, sanctifying, justifying, saving, catholic faith, by which they had access to God, and in which they pleased God, through which faith they had victory over that which displeased him; so they need no pope's imagined purgatory.

By this faith Abel offered. By this faith was Enoch translated. By this faith did Noah build the ark, by which he and his family were saved. By this faith Abraham forsook his country, and country religion, and followed and obeyed the Lord, from whom he received the blessing. By this faith was Moses preserved, when he was hidden three months by his parents. By this faith Moses forsook the pleasures of Egypt, and refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter. By this faith were the three children preserved in persecuting Nebuchadnezzar's flaming furnace. By this faith was Daniel preserved in the lion's den, and their mouths closed from devouring him. So faith is what resists the devil, and it is the shield of God's children, and the weapon of the elect, who were elected before the world was; which faith gives them victory over the world. So those who preach up or believe a purgatory, are erred from this catholic faith in Christ, who was and is the saints purger.

And John tells the church in his general epistle, 1 John 5:44. ‘this is the victory that overcomes the world, even your faith.’ So if there is no overcoming of the world, then there is no witnessing of this faith. Whosoever preaches, that though persons fall short of overcoming the world in this life, yet they may have a purgatory when they are dead, they are erred from the catholic faith; for there is but this living, purifying, justifying, holy faith, which Christ is the author and finisher of; which is the victory of all God's elect people, before the foundation of the world, and gives them the victory over the world. And therefore, the apostle Peter said to the church, in his first general epistle. 1 Pet 1:5. They were ‘kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation.

So this divine, holy, purifying, precious, catholic faith, which Christ was, and is the author and finisher of, was the saints keeper, through the power of God, by which they had access to God, and in which they pleased God; and in which divine, and holy precious catholic faith all the saints have unity. This is the one true catholic faith; so not many. Eph 4:5. And this was the one faith, which the saints were to contend for, as in Jude is spoken of: and this is the faith, which all the elect of God do preach, and hold forth to all the world; and that they must look unto Jesus, the author and finisher of. Heb 12:2.

And now concerning the true headship of the church: Christ Jesus, who died for the sins of the world, and tasted death for every man, is risen from the dead, and set on the right hand of God in the heavenly places, far above all principalities and powers, might and dominions, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come: and has put all things under his feet, and gave himself to be head over all things to his church, which is his body, the fullness of him, that fills all, and in all.’ Eph 1:20-23. So you may see Christ is the head of his church. Christ never set up any of the apostles to be the head of the church upon the earth; instead he called them servants and friends, and they called themselves apostles and servants, as may be seen in their epistles. Christ said unto them, ‘he that will be greatest among you, let him be servant unto all.’

So, you who set up any man to be pope or chief head of the church, and persecute others, because they will not believe as you do; have you not been like a monstrous body without a head, until you have made one? How often does the head go off your body, until you have made another? By this, does it not plainly appear that you are erred from the one, true, and everlasting head, Christ Jesus? He is the author and finisher of the true catholic faith; he was the head of his church in the apostles' days, to the primitive christians, after he was crucified, and risen from the dead; so he is still the head to all true christians: ‘who was dead, and is alive, and lives for evermore,’ who said, ‘I am alpha and omega, the first and last, Rev 1:17-18;’ which is the present head of the church, and which was, and which is to come in flames of fire, upon all that do not obey him: and with reward of life eternal to them that obey him, and believe in him.

The apostle tells the Ephesians, that Christ is the head of the church, and Saviour of the body. And Christ so loves his church, and gave himself for it; and the church is to be subject to Christ its head, who both died for it, and shed his blood for it, and redeemed it, and sanctified it, and purchased it with his blood; and cleanses it, and washes it with the washing of the water of the word, that he might present it to God, a glorious church without spot or wrinkle, that it should be holy and without blemish, and Christ cherishes and nourishes his church with his heavenly and spiritual nourishment, and heavenly cherishment; so that his church comes to be members of his body, ‘and flesh of his flesh, and bone of his bone.’ Eph 5.

The apostle writes the same to the Colossians, and tells them, ‘that by Christ all things were created, that are in heaven and in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones or dominions, principalities or powers,’ all things were created for him and by him, namely, Christ, who is the image of the invisible God, the first born of every creature, and he is before all things, and by him all things consist, and he is the head of the body, the church: who is the first begotten from the dead; ‘that in all things he might have the preeminence: for it pleased the Father that in him should all fullness dwell.’ Col 1:15-19. So you may see how clearly the apostle did exalt Christ above all, and to be the head of the church; and not himself, or Peter, nor any other of the apostles. They ‘warned and taught every man in all wisdom, that they might present every man perfect in Christ Jesus.’ So here you may see, they presented them to their head. Therefore, they exhorted the saints to be established, and rooted, and built up in Christ, as they had been taught, and bid them beware, for fear that any man should spoil them through philosophy or vain deceit, after the traditions of men, and rudiments of the world, and not after Christ: for in Christ dwells the fullness of divinity, who is the head. All the saints are to be complete in him, their head, Col 2:7-10, as the saints were in the apostles' days.

And the apostle writes to the Ephesians, ‘to grow up in Christ in all things, who is the head; so that nothing was to be between’ them and Christ, from whom the whole body is fitly jointed together, and compact by that which every joint supplies, according to the effectual working of the measure in every man, making increase of the body, to the edifying itself in love. So that the saints are to ‘grow up unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ,’ their head, and not to be tossed to and fro, and carried about with every windy doctrine, by the cunning craftiness of men, who lay in wait to deceive.

And therefore, the apostle exhorts the church to ‘let no man beguile them of their reward in a voluntary humility, and worshipping of angels, intruding into these things, which they had never seen, vainly puffed up in a fleshly mind, not holding the head, Christ Jesus, from which all the body by joints and bands, have nourishment ministered from Christ their head, and knit together, increases with the increase of God. So there was many then who would beguile them from their living head, Christ Jesus; as there are many now since the apostles’ days, that have set up a pope to be head. But the apostle set up Christ to be head of the church. For the apostle had labor and travel enough to bring people to Christ, the head; who were to ‘go into all nations,’ to preach the gospel of Christ, that they might believe in Christ their head.

And when the apostle said to the Colossians, ‘let no man judge you in meats or drinks, or in respect of an holy day, or new moons, or Sabbath day; which were shadows of good things to come: but the body is of Christ, who is the substance of all the shadows.’ And so you may see what sort they were, that did not hold Christ the head, and would beguile people of the reward they had from him their head. And therefore, said he, ‘if you were dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world:’ they were not to touch, taste nor handle the ordinances, doctrines or commandments of men, though they had never such a show of will-worship; for these neglected the body, and did not hold Christ the head.

And therefore, those who do not hold Christ the head of the church, have lost their reward from him, and do neglect the body, and are in the doctrines, ordinances, and commands of men, and the rudiments of the world. So in the rudiments of the world they are alive, and not dead with Christ from them. Such may make heads of their own for their bodies, when they have none upon them, as the papists do; and when one is dead, may make another, and may persecute, prison, and kill such as cannot own him to be the head of their church; and then set all their body on persecuting as long as (that) their head stands upon their body, as history and chronicles testify. Yes, they evidence the bloody works of this head, (that the body has made, and set upon it), and the fruits of this bloody, persecuting body. It was never the works of the true head, nor true church to persecute any that owned Christ their heavenly and spiritual head; for Christ the true head of his church said, that ‘he came not to destroy men's lives, but to save them;’ and he rebuked such as would have men's lives destroyed, and told them, ‘they knew not what spirit they are of;’ and likewise gave command to his church the true christians, (which he was head of), that they should love one another, and love enemies; and his church confessed, that their weapons were spiritual, and their faith was their shield, which Christ was the author of. So he gave them this spiritual weapon, and the sword of the spirit, which was the word of God; and their armor was their light; and their helmet was salvation, and they were shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace, ...

So these were the weapons of the true christian church, that held Christ to be their head; but the apostate church, called christian, (that is without a head, until they have made one), their weapons are carnal, and not spiritual.

And they must all come to the true light, which Christ does enlighten everyone that comes into the world withal; which is the life in Christ; and believe in it, if they come to the true head, and be grafted into him. For ‘both he that sanctifies, and those who are sanctified, are all of one;’ for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren, saying, ‘I will declare your name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise to thee.’ Heb 2:11-12.

And likewise, they must come to the grace and truth, which comes by Jesus Christ, in their hearts and inward parts, if they will come to Christ the head.

And also, they must come to the spirit of God within, and the anointing within, and let Christ dwell in their hearts, and the word of God to hammer down, cut down, and burn up that which has separated from God and Christ, which they are apostatized into, if they will come to Christ their head, who will reconcile them to God.

And give up making of faiths, and look unto Jesus the author and finisher of the true faith. And give up making of ways, and come to Christ the new and living way, which the true christians were in, in the apostles' days. And give over making of heads, and come to the light of Christ, which will turn people to Christ their head, and give them the knowledge of him their head. 2 Cor 4:6, Eph 1:22.

And give up making of religions, and come to the religion which is pure and undefiled before God, which will keep them from the spots of the world; and then they will be ashamed of that imaginary doctrine of a purgatory, (to cleanse or purge them in, when they are dead), and of all the heads and likenesses, and images they have made.

And give up making of worships, and come to the worship that Christ set up above sixteen hundred years ago, in the spirit and in the truth; and so lay away their own worships with all their carnal weapons, by which they have persecuted in this night of apostasy, and come to take up Christ's spiritual weapons.

And give up making of ministers at schools and colleges, by natural arts, tongues, and come to Christ, who is ascended on high, and gives gifts unto men for the work of the ministry.

Now Concerning Mediators

You in the apostasy, who look that Mary and other saints should be mediators for you to Christ or God; this is not catholic doctrine, neither is it from such as do hold Christ the head of the church; but from such as have apostatized from him.

For the apostle said, Heb 8:6 speaking of Christ, he is the Mediator: and, Christ is the Mediator of the New Testament; and the saints were come to Jesus the Mediator of the new covenant: and this was the ‘general assembly of the church of the first born written in heaven, who was come to God the judge of all, and to the spirit of just men made perfect;’ and (as it was said before), to Jesus the Mediator. Heb 12:23-24. For God would have all men to be saved, and to come to the knowledge of the truth: ‘For there is one God, and one Mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.’ 1 Tim 2:3-6.

Now it is clear, there is only one Mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who is head of his church; and whosoever has set up, or do set up other mediators between God and man, than the man Christ Jesus, are in the apostasy from the apostles' doctrine, and follow their own doctrines, and not the apostolic doctrine; for he is the one Mediator between God and man, the one eternal, living God, creator of all, and Christ Jesus, by whom were all things, who gave himself a ransom for all men; he is the alone one Mediator between God and man, who is the only head of his church, and his church testifies him to be that, which chuch has come to Jesus, their Mediator; who has made their peace between them and God, and so has received him; who is come, and has given them an understanding to know him; and those who have him, have life everlasting.

George Fox

The 10th month, 1678.

Postscript

And there is one faith, which Christ is the author and finisher of, which all must look unto Jesus for this saving, holy, precious, and divine faith, which purifies the heart, and is the victory; in which they have access to God, in which faith they do please God. And this is the catholic faith, of which we are.

Christ is the head of his church, who are gathered out of the whole world into his name; and he is in the midst of them a prophet, and a priest, and a shepherd, and a bishop, and a counselor, and a king to rule in the hearts of his church, and to exercise those offices in his church.

Christ set up one worship in the spirit and in the truth, for all the children in the new covenant, which be Jerusalem, (that is from above), her children's worship. For outward Jerusalem was in Canaan, and at the temple, where the outward Jews did worship in the old covenant, which worship Christ abolished, when he set up the worship in his new covenant, in spirit and in the truth for Jerusalem, which is above, and her children.

There is but one cross which crucifies people to the world, which cross of Christ is the power of God.

And the apostles in their days, did exalt Christ in the church, the Interceder, to make intercession for the saints to God; who said, ‘that Christ ever lives to make intercession for his people, and he is able to save them to the utmost, that come to God by him.’ So, none of the deceased saints did mediate, or intercede, or make intercession for the living saints; though the saints were to pray one for another, while they were living upon the earth, and the prayers of the saints avails much while they are living; but when they are deceased, and fallen asleep, to pray to them, either to be mediators or interceders, or to make intercession to them, it is neither catholic faith, nor catholic doctrine; but an invention, as praying for the dead to deliver them out of purgatory. For Christ is the foundation of God's holy house of living stones, and the rock which his house is built upon; which rock the gates of hell cannot prevail against: ‘For the foundation of God stands sure.’

A Warning to all that profess Christianity, and others, to beware of Covetousness, which is Idolatry.
—By George Fox

All people that do profess Christ, and christianity, this is a warning to you all, to take heed of covetousness; for covetousness was forbidden both in the Old Testament and the New, and by the law of God, and by Christ and his apostles.

For the apostle said, ‘covetousness is idolatry;’ [or greed], and both to the rulers, priests, teachers, and people in the Old and New Testament, that idolatrous practice was forbidden.

And Christ said, ‘it is one of those evils that defiles a man, that comes out of him.’

And the Lord said in his law, and ten commandments, ‘thou shall not covet your neighbor's house, thou shall not covet your neighbor's wife, nor his man-servant, nor his maid-servant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor anything that is your neighbor's.’

Now, if this covetous spirit is kept down, then the idolater is kept down, and that idol out of the heart.

Also, theft and stealing was forbidden in the old covenant, and so it is in the new; and all are to labor in the thing that is good.

Likewise, adultery was forbidden in the old covenant, and so it is in the new; yes, and more than outward adultery: for, ‘he that looks after a woman to lust after her,’ in the new covenant, Christ said, ‘he has committed adultery with her already in his heart.

And ‘bearing false witness against his neighbor's,’ was forbidden in the old covenant, and so it is in the new! For all are to speak truth to their neighbor's, and lie not. And the Lord said, in the Old Testament, ‘thou shall not kill.’

The apostle said, in the new covenant, ‘they did not wrestle with flesh and blood; and their weapons were not carnal, but spiritual;’ and Christ forbids wrath in the new covenant..

And Samuel, who was a judge and a prophet, who judged Israel, 1 Sam 12:2-4. Samuel said, ‘I am old and gray-headed, and I have walked before you from my childhood unto this day; whose ox or ass have I taken? Or whom have I defrauded or oppressed? Or of whose hand have I received any bribe to blind my eyes therewith?’And the children of Israel answered and said, ‘thou hast not defrauded nor oppressed any of us, neither hast thou received ought at any man's hand.’

Now here was a prophet, and a priest, and a judge, clear from that idolatry of covetousness; and has not he outstripped many of them which now call themselves prophets and priests, judges and teachers, who profess the new covenant?

David said, ‘incline my heart unto your testimonies, and not to covetousness.’ Psalm 119:36

So, if the hearts of all who profess christianity, were inclined to the testimony of Jesus, the spirit of prophecy, that would keep down the earthly spirit of covetousness, which is idolatry.

As Solomon said, in Pro 28:16, ‘he that hates covetousness, shall prolong his days.’ Then he that loves covetousness, which is idolatry, shall not prolong his days.

Jeremiah cried out against the Jews in the old covenant, and said, ‘from the greatest to the least of them, the prophet and the priest, every one of them was given to covetousness, and to deal falsely.’Jer 8:10, and Isa 56:11-12.

Yet, these priests and prophets, from the greatest to the least of them, could make a profession of the old covenant.

Let the priests, and prophets, and people, who profess the new covenant, see if they are not given to this idolatry of covetousness, which was hated and forbidden of God and Christ, and his people, prophets, and apostles.

Jeremiah further cries out against the Jew, in Jer 22:17, and said unto them, ‘your eyes and your heart are for your covetousness, and for shedding of innocent blood, and for oppression, and for violence.’

Now this was the Jews condition in the old covenant, when they forsook God, and his law and spirit.

Now, let all who profess themselves christians, in whom Christ does not reign, and who are not guided by the spirit of God, as the prophets and apostles were, search and try themselves to see if the fruits of their eyes and hearts, and the fruits of the spirit that was in the Jews, does not appear, and is manifest in them; a spirit that lusts to do violence and oppression, and a spirit of covetousness, and of persecution, and of shedding innocent blood, which was forbidden by God and his prophets in the old covenant, and by Christ and his apostles in the new covenant, and by them abhorred and cried out against. But what was the end of the Jews which followed after that wicked spirit, and went from the Lord?

Do those called christians, think in their profession of the new covenant, that they must have liberty in these evil things now, which were forbidden in the time of the old law and covenant? No, no; they are much more forbidden in the new.

The Lord said unto Ezekiel, ‘that the Jews would come and sit before him as the Lord's people, and they would hear his words, but they will not practice them; and with their mouths they would show much love, but their hearts went after their covetousness.’ Eze 33:31

Now will not the priests and professors of Christendom, hear and say the words of the new covenant and gospel, and appear to show much zeal and love for the words of the New Testament, but they will not do them nor practice them; for their hearts and eyes go after their covetousness, which is idolatry.

For have not you, who profess the new covenant in words, done as those who professed the old in words; even coveted goods, fields, houses, and taken by violence, and oppressed a man in his heritage, and devised iniquity, and wrought evil upon your beds, and in the morning-light have practiced it, because you had power in your hands?

Was not woe pronounced against such, that professed the old covenant, and yet walked contrary to it; and much more against all such, as are found in these practices now, who profess the new. Micah 2

Habakkuk cries, ‘woe to him that covets an evil covetousness to his house, that he may set his nest on high, that he may be delivered from the power of the evil,’ etc. Hab 2:9-11, he tells them, ‘the stone shall cry out of the wall, and the beam of the timber shall answer it against them.’

Therefore, let such covetous persons, that profess christianity, hearken and hear, if the stones out of the very wall do not cry out against you, and the beam of the timber does not answer it?

Christ said, in Mark 7:21-23, ‘that which cometh out of the man from within his heart, defiles the man, (namely,) evil thoughts, adultery, fornication, murder, theft, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, blasphemies, pride, foolishness, and an evil eye:’ now these are the evils that defile men, which the devil, the serpent, who is out of the truth, has wrought in man's heart, both in Adam and Eve, and the Jews, and the christians that go from God, and disobey his voice and command. For neither God nor Christ wrought any of these evil things in man in the beginning, nor since, who is the author of all good. Therefore, these evil things must be purged out of man by Christ's blood and baptism, and by the mortification and circumcision of the spirit of God.

And Christ said unto them, (namely, the Jews,) ‘take heed and beware of covetousness; for a man's life consists not in the abundance of the things which he does possess.’ Luke 12:15

Oh! that all who are called christians, and all people, would consider this blessed doctrine of Christ the heavenly man; and that they might come to understand and know what their life [the life of God] does consist in; then they would take heed and beware of covetousness, which is idolatry.

The apostle Paul, who had the care of the churches upon him, he writes to the Corinthians, ‘not to keep company with any man that is called a brother, that is a fornicator, or covetous, or idolater, or railer, or a drunkard, or an extortionist;’ with such an one they were not so much as to eat,1 Cor 5:11; those who professed christianity, and followed such practices, the saints were neither to eat nor keep company with for they shamed their profession of christianity.

So here the apostles and saints, the true church, had a judgment given them, and did judge out the covetous idolaters, fornicators, drunkards, railers, ... from having any fellowship with the saints, the true church, not as much as to eat with them, nor to keep company with them of that spirit for he said, ‘neither fornicators, nor thieves, nor drunkards, nor covetous idolaters, railers, nor extortionists, .. shall inherit the kingdom of God.’

The apostle told the Corinthians, that ‘such were some of them, but they [the true Christians] were washed, sanctified, and justified from these things [sins], in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and by the spirit of God.’ So these were washed from their fornication, covetousness, idolatry, drunkenness, railing, and extortion, and justified in the name of Jesus, and by the spirit of God.

So the apostle here does not speak of the fornicators, and covetous idolaters, and extortionists of the world, who were outside the church [not claiming to be Christians]; for God judges such. But the saints, the apostles, and the true church were to judge those who practiced such things within the church, showing the true christian's church had a power; and not to keep company nor to eat with such, professing Christ, that were of such practices, knowing that the unrighteous should not inherit the kingdom of God, nor drunkards, nor fornicators, thieves, railers, extortionists, nor covetous idolaters; they that lived in these evils, were not like to inherit the kingdom of God; for they were defiled, unwashed, and not sanctified nor justified. So that if the saints did keep company, or did eat with such unwashed, unsanctified, unjustified persons, or have fellowship with them, they took the members of Christ and joined them to an harlot; for he that is joined to an harlot, is one body; ‘for two,’ said he, ‘shall be one flesh.’ And therefore, the saints' bodies are members of Christ; God forbid they should be joined to harlots, or that they should make them members of an harlot. ‘He who is joined to the Lord, is one spirit.’ And the saints' bodies are the temples of the Holy Ghost, which proceeds from God and Christ, and being bought with a price, the blood of Christ, and washed, and sanctified, and justified in the name of Jesus Christ by the spirit of God, they are to glorify God in their bodies, souls, and spirits, which are God's which he has given to them to glorify him withal; glory to his name forever.

Therefore, all this old leaven of fornication, adultery, theft, covetousness, idolatry, drunkenness, reveling, extortion, and all unrighteousness, envy, malice, and wickedness, must be purged out, which is the world's god the serpent has wrought in, that they may be a new lump, and keep the feast of unleavened bread of sincerity and truth; for Christ, our passover, is sacrificed for us, as you may see in 1Cor 5:7, the practice of the church in the apostles' days, and which should be so now, to keep this heavenly passover with unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

Further, the apostle tells the church of Corinth, in 2 Cor 6:14-17, and explains himself with a great care of the church, that they must not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. So this is an unequal yoke, to yoke believers and unbelievers together; and gives his reason, and said, ‘what fellowship has righteousness with unrighteousness? And what communion has light with darkness? And what concord has Christ with Belial? Or what part has a believer with an infidel? And what agreement has the temple of God with idols?’

Now, those who go contrary to the apostle's doctrine in these things, have lost their sense, and sight, and feeling; for here is no fellowship, nor unity, nor concord; here is no agreement, nor part with such aforementioned, that are out of the truth; but they are unequally yoked with such who are the temples of the living God, that join with them; they in whom God does dwell and walk, and he is their God, and they are his people.

Wherefore, come out from amongst them, and be ye separate, said the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing, and I will receive you, and I will be a father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, said God Almighty.’ Here you may see, what the saints, the sons and daughters of God, are to forsake, and not to touch, nor make agreement with, nor be yoked to, but be separated from, that the Lord God Almighty may receive them.

*Obviously you are also not supposed to fellowship with people who call themselves Christians, but who still practice sin with no shame, some even bragging of their license to sin with no penalty from God.

Again, the apostle writes to the Ephesians 4:25-29, ‘that they should put away lying, and every man speak the truth to his neighbor's; for they are members one of another: and him that had stolen, steal no more; but let him labor, working with his hands the thing that is good. And let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouths, but that which is good, tending to edification, which may minister grace to the hearers: and all filthiness, foolish talking and jesting, which was not convenient, was to be put away.’ And the saints, the church of Christ, was not to have any fellowship with such things, the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them. ‘And fornication, and all uncleanness, and covetousness, let it not be once named amongst you, as becomes saints. For this you know, (namely, the saints, the church of Christ,) that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, which is an idolater, (mark, covetous, that is an idolater,) has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.’ Here the church of Christ had their knowledge, and had their judgment to judge out these things, that kept people out of the kingdom of God. And now mark, ‘if a covetous man is an idolater,’ as the apostle said, then all ‘covetous men are idolaters, and shall not inherit the kingdom of God.’

Now, let all those who are called priests, teachers, ministers, and prophets in Christendom, see if their fruits do not declare them to be covetous, and so idolaters, who preach Christ and the apostles' (and seem to have a zeal for their) words; but how many of them will preach without tithes and hire? And if people will not give it unto them, then to spoil their goods, and cast them into prison, yes, till death, as many have been, because they would not hold up and feed that idolatrous spirit of covetousness in them. When as the apostle commands the church, not ‘so much as to have fellowship, nor company, nor to eat with a covetous person, which is an idolater.’

Now, if the saints, the true church of Christ, must not eat, nor keep company with such, then how must they hear them, or be compelled or forced to hear such? Knowing that Christ said to his ministers, whom he sent forth ‘freely they had received, freely they were to give;’ and they were ‘neither to provide silver nor gold, nor bag nor scrip; but to enquire who was worthy of their message; and what was set before them, that they were to eat; and such as were unworthy, that would not receive them and their message, they were to shake the dust off their feet, which should be a witness against them at the day of judgment.’ The apostles did not cast those unworthy ones, that would not receive them, and set meat before them, into prison, as some of your ministers do the people of God, because they cannot uphold your covetous, idolatrous spirit, in giving you tithes and hire.

Now, all you that will not preach Christ's and the apostles' words, nor pray among people, or give them psalms to sing, and sing among them, and baptize children, (as you call it,) or sprinkle them, without the tenths of people's increase of their labors [tithes], and without the tenths of the increase of their cattle and goods, and have set wages by the year for these things; are not you the covetous idolaters? Yes, and cast people into prison, and spoil their goods, and excommunicate them whom you do none of these works for, neither have they set you at work, nor hired you to do any of these things for them; for do not most people, everywhere, generally hire you, and agree with you for so much in the year? Or do not you make friends with great persons, to put you into fat benefices [incomes]? Instead of inquiring where the worthy people are, are not your priests inquiring, where is the greatest benefices, and most tithes and incomes? Then, when you are settled, do not you spoil the goods, and cast into prison, those who never hired you nor hear you? Is this not contrary to the general command of Christ to his disciples, both to the twelve and the seventy? ‘Freely you have received, freely give,’ etc. So is it not manifest here, that you are covetous idolaters that the apostle speaks against, ‘that shall not enter into the kingdom of God.’

For Peter in his second general epistle, 2 Pet 2:2-3, speaks of the false prophets and false teachers, and how ‘many should follow their pernicious ways, by reason of whom the way of truth should be evil spoken of;’ which truth the apostles preached freely, as they had received freely, according to the command of Christ. And these false prophets and teachers through covetousness should with feigned words make merchandize of people. For how often have the teachers changed their places and ways? The apostle compares such with the old world, and Sodom, and fallen angels that kept not their habitation. And therefore, let the teachers in Christendom, who cast into prison and spoil people's goods for their bellies, examine and see if they are not the men [of whom the Apostle accused].

Also, the apostle writes to Timothy, in 2 Tim 3, of such ‘covetous proud boasters, and false accusers, and fierce despisers of them that were good, and which were heady, high-minded lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; that had the form of godliness, (which was the form of christianity,) but denied the power thereof; from such the saints, (the true church,) were to turn away.’ For he likened them to Jannes and Jambres, who withstood Moses, who were men of corrupt minds, and did resist the truth, and were reprobate concerning the true faith; these led such captive who were laden with sins, and led about with divers lusts, always learning, and were never able to come to the knowledge of truth;’ and how should they, being destitute thereof themselves, and men of corrupt minds, bring any into the truth and the faith, when they are out of the true faith themselves, and tell people, ‘they must carry a body of sin and death to the grave with them;’ and others say, ‘they must have a purgatory when they are dead:’ and such are reprobate from the apostle's doctrine and faith, which is the victory, and in the damnable heresy. But the apostles exhorted the saints, ‘to walk in the light, and the blood of Jesus Christ should cleanse them from all sin.’

The apostle told the church, ‘that they were washed, cleansed, sanctified, and justified,’ etc. and this was while they were upon the earth. And he tells the Ephesians, the saints, ‘you that were sometimes darkness, now are you light in the Lord.’

And the apostle writes to Timothy, 1Tim 6:8-11,having food and raiment, let us therewith be content; and godliness with contentment is great gain: but they that will be rich, fall into temptations and snares, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition: for the love of money is the root of all evil, which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows. But thou, O man of God, flee these things, and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness. This is the man of God's path, and to flee covetousness, and the love of money, and such as make gain their godliness; for such are destitute of the truth: and this should be the practice of all true christians now.

Do not the men of the world, with the covetous priests and teachers, and others, fly after riches and money, instead of fleeing from them? And after gain supposing it to be godliness? Is not this a mark, that such have erred from the true faith, and are fallen into hurtful lusts, which drown them in destruction and perdition, by falling into a temptation and a snare, in coveting after riches and the love of money, which is the root of all evil? Has not the root of this evil been manifest by the teachers of the world, and other people? The priests and teachers by destroying people for their bellies; and the people by coveting and encroaching other people's goods, and so destroy their own and others too; the teachers and others showing, that they are erred from the faith which Christ is the author and finisher of, who said, ‘freely you have received, freely give; and beware of covetousness.’ For the apostle said, ‘a bishop must not be a striker, nor greedy of filthy lucre, nor a brawler, nor covetous; but he must hold fast the faithful word, and be blameless:’ and such bishops and elders, teachers and deacons, were Timothy and Titus to ordain, as you may see, in 1 Tim 3:2 and Titus1:6-9. And they were to hold the mystery of faith in a pure conscience; and therefore, how can any bishops and teachers, elders or deacons be the succeeders of them, that the apostles, and Timothy, and Titus ordained, that are strikers, persecutors, covetous and greedy of filthy lucre, yes, and cast people into prison whom they do not oversee, nor teach, nor preach to? Are not such erred from the faith, the evil beasts and slow-bellies, that suppose gain to be godliness, that serve not the Lord Jesus Christ, but their own bellies, which the apostle bid Titus, ‘rebuke sharply.’ Now you may see such as coveted to be rich, and were persecutors and strikers, and greedy of filthy lucre, such Timothy and Titus were not to ordain bishops and teachers, elders and deacons; for such were erred from the faith; then they were not like to hold the mystery of faith in a pure conscience, which Christ is the author and finisher of, who said, ‘freely you have received, freely give.’ For the apostle, in Acts 20:26-34 said, that ‘he was pure from the blood of all men;’ he took the church to record, ‘that he had coveted no man's silver, gold, nor apparel;’ and said, ‘that the church knew themselves, that his hands had ministered unto his necessities, and them that were with him.’ Now here was a clear free minister of Christ. Let the bishops, priests, and teachers, etc. in Christendom, try themselves and their practice by the scripture, and the apostle's example, and the command of Christ, who said, ‘freely you have received, freely give.’ Can you say, that you have coveted no man's silver, gold, nor apparel, either of your own people, nor others, whom you have not preached to? Can you say, you are clear from the blood of all men, as the apostle said, and call the christians to record? If you do say you are; will not the jails testify against you, and the courts, and your own hearts and consciences also will witness against you? And how many have been persecuted and imprisoned by you until death, for not giving you money and tithes, whom you do not work for? What persecuting and hauling before courts have you made? You cannot call the christians to record, ‘that you are clear from the blood of all men, that you covet no man's silver, gold, nor apparel, and that you labor with your hands for your own necessities and others, and that you are not greedy of filthy lucre, and are not strikers and persecutors, nor are they that covet after money and the riches of this world; and that you do not give freely,’ as Christ commands, manifesting that you have not received freely from him; but that you are erred from the faith of Christ, (by which the apostles lived,) and from the conversation of the saints in the primitive times. For the apostle said to the church, ‘let your conversation be without covetousness, and be content with such things as you have.’ And the Lord said, ‘I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.Heb 13:5 and Josh 1:5. And so, this should be the conversation of all that profess Christ Jesus, and then they would covet after the best gifts, and not after the earthly things, and follow after love and charity.

And the apostle said, ‘be ye followers of me, even as I am also of Christ.' And so it is clear the church of the true christians is not to follow any teacher, but as he follows Christ in his life, faith, practice, and doctrine. And if they make a profession of the form of godliness, without the power, and spirit, and truth, they were to turn away from them, and not to follow them; but as every one has received Christ Jesus, so walk in him in humility.

George Fox

The 5th month, 1679

 

END OF VOLUME V

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