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shall testify of me.' And again, Christ saith, · He shall glorify me,' to wit, the spirit of truth, the comforter, ‘he shall receive of mine, and show it unto you: he shall lead and guide you into all truth, when he is come. And did not Christ speak these words to his followers before be was crucified? And were not Christ's words fulfilled, when the holy ghost fell upon the believers, in Acts ii.? Which led and guided the believers then, and now, into all truth. And is not this holy ghost now reproving the world of sin and unbelief, because they believe not in the light, the life in Christ, as he commands? And is not this holy ghost now reproving the world of their righteousness, that will not be guided by the holy ghost to Christ and his righteousness? And is not this holy ghost reproving the world for their judgment, which is not from the holy ghost, but from the unclean ghost, and by the judgment of that unclean ghost, it is said, that the prophets were fools, and the spiritual men were mad? And that John had a devil, and that Christ by the prince of devils, did cast out devils, and that Christ was a deceiver, and a blasphemer, and that the apostles were deceivers, and Paul was a babbler, and a pestilent fellow. This was, and is the judgment of many great professors of the scriptures, with their unclean ghost, who neither have the comfort of the scriptures, nor the holy ghost, but are reproved by it.
But as many as receive Christ in his light, life, grace, and truth, that comes from him, to them he gives power to become the sons of God, and then God is your Father, and you are led by his spirit; and this is the noblest birth in all the world, above all the natural, or mortal births in the world; for this birth is heir of heaven, and heavenly Jerusalem, its mother; and it is heir of an everlasting kingdom, that will never have an end, which will stand when all the kingdoms in the world will have an end; for God's kingdom stands in his power, righteousness, and peace, and joy in the holy ghost. And the apostle said, “He that believes, is born of God, and he that is born of God, overcomes the world.' And again, • What manner of love is this, that we should be called the sons of God? And Peter saith, · Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which lives and abides and endures for ever.' And the apostle saith, · They that are led by the spirit of God, are the sons of God;' then God is their Father, who is greater and mightier, and more powerful than all, and richer than all; for all that is in the earth, and all that is in heaven is the Lord God's, your heavenly Father's; who is God in heaven, and God in the earth, who can enrich thee with riches and blessings above, and riches and blessings below; who dwells with all his sons and daughters that have received Christ, and are led by the spirit of God their Father; so
they can say, he that inhabits eternity, dwells with the humble, meek, and lowly-hearted children.
Now what is the matter that all people in the world, that profess God, are not the sons of God? The reason Christ and the apostle tells you, because that they do not receive Christ, and are not led by the spirit of God, but rebel against it, and are led by the devil, the spirit of that wicked one; and so become his children, and his works and commands they will do, and not the living God's, that made them, to serve and worship him in spirit, and God is angry with them every day; and therefore the judgments of God's spirit stands over the head of such, who will not believe in Christ, and follow him, who bruises the serpent's head, that you might have life and salvation in Christ.
Concerning God's promise to Cain, and how by disobedience he fell
short of it.
And the Lord said to Cain, "If thou dost well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if not, sin lies at thy door.' Here was the promise of God to Cain, but Cain disobeyed God, and did not well; for he persecuted and killed his brother Abel about religion and worship; and therefore God pronounced, that he should be a fugitive, and a vagabond in the earth. Though Cain built a city, and Ishmael the son of Hager, who was born after the flesh, who mocked Isaac, who was born after the spirit or promise, as in Gal. iv. God commanded Abraham to turn Hager and Ishmael out of his family! and they wandered in the wilderness, a place for persecutors, though Ishmael became a great man afterwards in the earth. Gen. xxi.
And the Lord said, . Because of these men, (to wit, the Jews,) which have seen my glory, and my miracles which I did in Egypt, and in the wilderness, and have tempted me now these ten times, and have not hearkened unto my voice, surely they shall not see the land, (to wit, Canaan,) which I swore unto their Fathers, neither shall any of them which provoked me see it,' save Caleb and Joshua, which were of another spirit, and followed the Lord fully. And the Lord's anger was against the rest that rebelled against him, and made them to wander in the wilderness forty years, and to bear their whoredoms from the Lord, until their carcasses fell in the wilderness. Numbers xiv. and Num. iii. and Deut. i. These were those that murmured and rebelled against the Lord, and Moses, and Joshua, and Caleb; and bade them stone them with stones, and said one to another, Let us make us a captain, let us return into Egypt.'
Now here you may see those Jews, that had seen the glory of the Lord, and his wondrous works, and mighty arm; and yet they murmured and rebelled against the Lord, and his faithful servants, and through their disobedience they perished in the wilderness, and did not inherit the land of Canaan; and therefore take heed you christians, through your disobedience, murmuring, and rebelling against God and his faithful servants, that you are not destroyed, and perish in the spiritual wilderness, and never come to see heavenly Jerusalem, and wander in the spiritual wilderness, where there is no way, and grope in the dark, without the light of Christ, and stagger like drunken men.
And David speaks of such wicked transgressors, that make a noise like a dog, they belch out with their mouths, swords are in their lips; these are them that wander up and down, for they are out of the path of life. But David said, . With my whole heart have I sought thee; let me not wander from thy commandments;' for they that love God and Christ will keep them.
And the Lord told the Jews they loved to wander:"they have not re• strained their feet, therefore the Lord doth not accept them.' And how
did the Jews wander from the Lord, and his ways, both in the days of Isaiah and Jeremiah? Yea, they wandered from the Lord, and his spirit, and his law; so that the ten tribes were carried into captivity by the king of Assyria, and at last the two tribes were carried into captivity by the king of Babylon. And therefore let those that profess themselves christians, consider; are not they wandered from the same holy ghost, and the power and spirit of Christ that the apostles were in? Are not they gone into captivity, into the mystery of Babylon, or confusion?
And you may see God's judgments upon Moab for their pride; and the Lord said, 'I will send unto him wanderers, that shall cause him to wander, and shall empty his vessels, and break his bottles.”
Now, all ye proud, consider ye this; for there is none that is proud but they are wandered from Christ, the way to God, who is meek and low in heart; and they that be proud, they learn of the proud, and the proud comes over them. So one wanderer learns of another, but their bottles will be broken, and vessels will clash one against another; and then your filthy liquor will be spilt.
And Jeremiah in his Lamentations, chap. iv. 14, cries out against the Jews, and saith, · For the sins of her prophets, and the iniquities of her priests that have shed blood in the midst of them, they wandered as blind men, &c. they polluted themselves with blood,' &c.
Now let Christendom consider this, let her prophets and priests, that have shed the blood of the just, about religion and worship, consider and see if they be not wandered from Christ the way, who came not to Vol. VI.
destroy mens' lives, but to save them; and when you are thus wandered from God and Christ, who then have you to save you? are not you wandered from your saviour? Therefore, blessed are they whose minds are stayed upon the Lord, they shall be kept in perfect peace.
But all you that curse people, and not only so, but spoil their goods, because they will not be of your way, worship, and religion; and are not your curses as the wandering bird? and so your curses do not hit nor come upon them, but upon yourselves;' for Christ saith, · Bless, and curse not,' and they that curse, are wandered from his way and doctrine. And doth not Solomon tell you, your wandering desires are vanity, and vexation of spirit? And therefore those desires are not to be followed or served, for wanderers must turn to the Lord by his spirit if they be saved. And the Lord said, I will send a famine in the land; not a famine of bread and water, but of hearing the word of God, and they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north unto the east; they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the Lord, and shall not find it.'
Now ye may consider, the Jews had the words in the old testament in Amos's days, and after; and let Christendom consider, they have the words of the new testament. And do not the teachers in Christendom say, there is no hearing of God's and Christ's voice nowadays, nor receiving the word from heaven, as the apostles did? Such do wander to and fro, from one way, from one sect, and from one religion to another; manifesting there is a famine amongst them of Christ and the word of God, that they cannot find it; which word should reconcile them to God and the scripture; and so it may be said of you, as Hosea said to the Jews;for your silver you possess nettles, and thorns are in your tabernacles. And are not you of their spirit, that say, the prophet is a fool, and the spiritual men are mad; for the multitude of your iniquities have blinded you? And was it not the cause of the Jews wandering among the nations, because they forsook God and his law, and rebelled against his good spirit? And is it now the cause of people's wandering, because that they have erred from the spirit of God, and the law of the spirit of life in Christ Jesus, and from the same holy ghost the apostles were in? And yet make a profession of the words of the scripture, which was given forth by the holy ghost, like the Jews, that made a profession of the scriptures of the old testament, and always resisted the holy ghost that gave them forth. So both the Jews and christians, that are not in the same holy ghost that the prophets and apostles were in, are the wanderers, and wandered from their habitation. But the Lord is gathering his sheep which have been scattered, and have wandered from mountain to hill; and has set one shepherd
= over them to feed them, Christ Jesus; and Christ's sheep know his
voice, and follow him, and can praise God through Jesus Christ their shepherd, that feeds them.
And the apostle writes against the idle wanderers, and teachers from house to house, and busy bodies, that speak things which they ought not; all such wander from the spirit of God, in which is the heavenly fellowship and unity; and they that went in Cain's, Corah's, and Balaam's way, feeding themselves without fear, clouds without water, trees without fruit, twice dead and plucked up by the roots; then they are not like to grow. They were raging waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame, wandering stars, to whom is reserved the blackness of
darkness for ever. Now these being twice dead, first dead in sins and strespasses, and then made alive, and then dead again, yet remain trees,
wells, and clouds, but without water, rain, or fruit; so wandering stars,
in Cain's, and Corah's, and Balaam's way. Cain wandered in the old - world, Balaam and Corah wandered in the next world; but these which Jude speaks of, wandered from Christ, and true christianity. Now
wandering stars are not fixed stars in the firmament of God's power, so #wandering stars are not to be steered by, nor followed; for they that
do follow Cain, Balaam, and Corah, are they that feed themselves without fear, that foam out their own shame, clouds without rain, wells without water, and trees without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots, and cannot grow; which kept not their first habitation, but have lost their first habitation; which have forsaken the right way, that are carried about with a tempest, to whom the 'mist of darkness is reserved for ever. And these wandering stars, they that keep their habitation in Christ cannot follow, though they speak high swelling words of vanity,
&c. and promise them liberty, &c. yet bring into bondage; but as the I apostle saith, follow us, as we follow Jesus Christ; for they that do so, i are the fixed stars in the firmament of God's power, which bring people
to the light, grace, and truth, by which they may be fixed upon Christ, from whence grace comes, by which they shall see and discern who follow Christ, and who follow the wandering stars, by the same spirit of discerning as was in the apostles, and the church in the primitive time. For they that have not the spirit of Christ, are none of his sheep, but they that have the spirit of Christ are his sheep, and established in him, and upon him their heavenly rock and foundation, through
whom they have peace with God. . And are not you sensible how the Jews, Scribes, and Pharisees,
priests, and high priests, were wandered from the holy ghost, and resisted it when the Lord Jesus Christ was come in the flesh, and also resisted him? and were not they gone into many sects? and did not Christ's prophecy come upon them that they should be scattered among