Page images


O, thou of little faith, why dost thou doubt,
Because all mysteries thou canst not find out?
I said, in bye-paths thou must first go through,
Unhang the gates, and o'er the stiles must go;
Then in the gap I bade thee for to come,
Or in my fury I should throw all down;
Then in the gap I bid thee now appear,
Make up the breach, as Moses did before.
And from the text I said I'd fix it there:
The Holy Ghost to thee is surely come;
'Tis HE inspires, it must to all be known.
From place to place, and heart to heart I go,
And know before what every man will do.
Out of his mouth to-day he did declare
That very text that brings the substance here;
For like the text I say I'll surely do,
If men will not obey, and own me true;
Provok'd to anger, I shall soon begin,
If men deny, when thou hast told my mind.
And now I tell thee, if thou dost draw back,
Thou and thy friends in pieces I shall break;
But let thy friends with thee in this agree,
Then by their faith preserved they shall be,
As all thy writings are in a straight line;
And can they prove the writings are not mine?
No greater judges then they must appear
Than thou wast of the sermon thou didst hear;
And that thou say'st thou did'st not understand;
So wilt not justify, nor wilt condemn.
So to mankind I now do say the same:
If they'll not justify, they can't condemn ;
And to thy judgment they must give it up;
And 'tis by thee the curtains must come back.
For he that preach'd it now the judge must be ;
And now I tell thee, so must it by thee:
If that thy writings they can't understand,
Bet say it is out of the reach of man
To judge aright of things that are too high;
Then to thyself they all must give the day."

The sermon he preached was upon the Holy Ghost, which I could by no means understand; it was beyond my comprehension; but I thought the manner he spoke was like people's saying, "it was all finished, when Christ died;" but yet, as I did not fully understand his meaning, I said I would neither justify nor condemn. And here I


was answered, that he must be the judge of his sermon, and I must be the judge of my own writings; for his sermon was too high for me; and my writings were too high for him; as he gave no answer to my letter, and said he did not understand it.

"Now I shall answer thee. No man, without a strength of faith, believing thy visitation to be from the Lord, could be a clear judge of thy writings. Discern these two lines

Then by their faith preserved they shall be;
As all thy writings are in a straight line.

But what straight line were they in at that time? Know I said thou must go in bye-paths first, to unhang the gates, to go over the stiles, and then to come into the gap to make up the breach, as Moses did before. Then how could all be in a straight line then? But now I have ordered thee to bring all in a straight line, and to go into the gap, and make up the breach for ye must know that there is a breach to make up now; and the gap is broken down for the sheep to go out. Here let men of wisdom land back their thoughts to what was then: and discern how things stand now; as I have ordered thee to bring it together in a straight line. Then they may understand at what time my great promises or great threatenings will take place, at a time I told thee to make up the breach; but what breach then hadst thou got to make up, when thou judgedst thou hadst a Moses to depend upon, or one like him, that would act faithfully and true? Know I told thee of ***** he would be shocked with surprise; but what shock could it be to him to receive thy letter, which he did not understand? But know, when I ordered thee to write to the Bishop, in 1799, then he was shocked with surprise, and returned thy letter


with anger and indignation. Know what *** told *** that his master trembled with passion, and said, "Now she hath written to the Bishop! carry back her letter directly to and forbid her writing to me any more?"

[ocr errors]

"Now come to the other: what answer I gave thee in 1797, to


s sermon.

The text was from 2 Corinthians, viii. 9."For ye know the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich."

In the course of his sermon he said, if we did not believe in Christ, because we could not find out all mysteries, we should be like a man, who sought for an anchor in the dark, and so make shipwreck of faith and a good conscience; or like a philosopher, who threw away his cup, because he was outdone by a boy, who made a cup with the hollow of his hand to drink out of. In his sermon he said, that nothing could strike us more forcibly than our own consciences, when our Saviour said, "I was hungry, and ye gave me no meat; thirsty, ye gave me no drink as much as ye did it not to the least of my disciples, ye did it not unto me."

I thought he was acting like the philosopher; and out of his own mouth I could condemn him.

When I came home, it was answered me in the following manner.

"Now, Joanna, thee I'll answer,

As the matter did appear,

If thou clear canst judge thy Master,
In it I was surely there.

Out of his mouth dost thou condemn;
And I'll condemn him too:

What he did say I bade him weigh,
And lay before his view.


"The thing's too high"

"Too wondrous to believe"As he can never find the way

These truths thou didst receive.
Then like the man will he go on,
His cup to throw away;
Because he is outdone by one
Appears so low as thee.

Or in the dark to miss his mark,
No pilot can he see,

now cries,

No rock to climb, his anchor gone;
His shipwreck let him see;

What hazard run, what rock to climb,

When he's benighted here;

And faith, and hope, and all is gone,

And charity despairs.
For charity he'th none for me,
To see my honour die:
Am I not come to poverty,
Humbly to him apply?

And will he say, like thee, that day,
He did something bestow,
For to assist me in the way,
My journey to go through?
To bid me come has he begun ?
Or wish'd my kingdom here?
As all my flock has now become
Just like thy father here;
Wounded like he my people be,
What clothing do you send?
I ask you where's your charity,
See my imprison'd friend!

With grief oppress'd you wound her breast,

And stones for bread you send.

She does not want your charity,

If gold be what you mean:

The charity wanted by she

Is faith and love to shew;

The feeble knee for to confirm,
With charity below;

And judge your God as Abram did,

He is faithful in the end;

He wont deceive those that believe.-
Now to the other send :

For perfect here do men appear;
My word they do forget:

No prophecies are mine; by them

The mysteries seem forgot.

My Bible's clear; 'tis man doth err;
And trace my Bible back;
Did I not tell you, in the end
The mysteries would be great?
The prophet's word is on record-
A child should lead you all;
What answer now from you I've got?
You mind it not at all;
And marvellous things to you I bring,
And marvellous all is done;
Were you to see the perfect day,
Your senses would be gone;

The sun so bright would take your sight,
When brilliant it doth shine;
You cannot long look in the sun,

Nor see the things divine;

So it must appear now clouded here,

Your senses to secure.

Thy father's hand so near doth stand,—
I here can say no more."

"Now I shall answer thee, that they may discern in what manner I spoke on conditions, when I first ordered thee to write to *****; but if they had understood my sayings, they might have understood that he would never stand as a judge with thee. But here thou art puzzled at my saying, if thou clearly canst judge thy master, in it I was surely there; for it was wisdom worked by ME, to discern the folly of the philosopher; but he did not discern the folly in himself, that he was acting in like manner; and therefore I told thee he would go on to throw away his cup because here was an inquiry made to him. And now look further; I asked, what rock had he to climb? and said when his anchor was gone, he would make a shipwreck of his faith. Then I told thee how he would act with theeto send stones, instead of bread; and with what sorrow he would wound thy breast.

"So that if men weighed the Communication, what I answered thee of ***** in 1797; and the manner of his conduct in 1799; with

« PreviousContinue »