... for why should I be as one that turneth aside by the flocks of thy companions?—Canticles 1.7.
Poor, waſted, miſrepreſented Remnant, of the ſuffering, Anti-popiſh, Anti-prelatic, Anti-eraſtian, Anti-ſectarian, true Preſbyterian church of Chriſt, in Scotland, united together in a general correſpondence. Published at Sanquhar.
IT will no doubt be reputed by many a work both superfluous and unseasonable at this time, to publish any thing of this nature. Superfluous, in regard that our principles and practices are abundantly manifest to the world; particularly in our informatory vindication, the testimony against the toleration, and the contendings and the sufferings of many of our dear brethren in their adhering to the same. And unseasonable, by reason of our present circumstances, being this day as sheep scattered upon the mountains, without a shepherd to gather or lead us: no man taking care for our souls: but instead thereof, all or most part waiting for our halting, looking for and lying in wait, to catch advantage against the cause, through the least misbehaviour of any of those who own it: and would, we doubt not, be glad of any thing whereby they might get the least shadow of ground to reproach; now when we are as signets and wonders, and have far more to criticize upon our words and actions than to kyth any sympathy with the scope and design of what we intend by the same, upon these and the like considerations, it may be a question, whether at this time it be our duty to appear in this manner? Seeing much of the beauty and lustre of a testimony, yea, and much of its weight, depends upon its being both seasonably exhibited, and by men of understanding, that have knowledge of the times, and what Israel ought to do. These and many other things relative to the same, and they have in some measure been pondered by us; so have not altogether wanted their own weight, to deter us from any thing of that nature in such a juncture. But yet upon the other hand, when we consider, that ever since the Lord's outstretched arm brought redemption to this land from Antichristian darkness, and in an eminent way made it his own, by bringing us under these sacred and inviolable bonds of holy covenants; as enemies to that covenanted work of reformation, have not been, neither at this day are wanting for their part in carrying on their malignant designs, in opposition to and for destruction of the covenant and cause of God, and have been not a little helped thereto by the faintings and dastardly yieldings of unfaithful and declining ministers and professors of the same. So likewise the Lord hath glorified his name, and hath so far dignified this church, as to have the honour (to the honour of his name be it spoken) of having still a party in her, who notwithstanding the hellish cruelty of open and avowed enemies in their persecution on the one hand, and the base and treacherous dealings of backsliding ministers and professors, in their reproaches and misrepresentations of that poor party on the other hand. Yet over all these difficulties, accounted it their glory to be faithful for him in their places and stations; and esteemed the least hoof of the attained-unto reformation, preferably to their dearest interests: laid hold upon all opportunities that were offered for giving a testimony of their love to himself and zeal for his public glory; although seldom or never thought seasonable by the wise and learned rabbies of the time. Considering how they were helped to resist unto blood, in striving to keep the word of his patience, and contend for the faith once delivered unto the saints. How the Lord smiled upon their honest designs, and received them with good-will at their hands. And likewise considering what God-provoking, soul-ensnaring, and land-desolating courses are now on foot in these lands; as if all we have done these years bypast were not sufficient to draw down the Lord's deserved wrath upon us, without putting on the capstone on all our other defections, by joining once more in affinity with the people of these abominations, and carrying it on under the name of Protestant interest, and new reformation. And then, what strange apprehensions the land hath conceived of us, upon the account of our non-concurrence with the same: looking upon us, as men misled, drinking in and maintaining strange and pernicious principles, despisers of government and rejecters of the gospel. We say, upon these and other weighty considerations, we judge ourselves some way obliged, if we can do no more, at least to kythe our desire to follow that noble Cloud of Witnesses, and to go forth by their foot-steps in contending for truth, by adding our mite of a testimony to all the truths that are this day practically contravened: and against all defections either on the right or left hand, whatsoever plausible pretences they may be covered with. Although we judge ourselves, at this time, incapable of publishing any thing that can either make truth more clear than it is, or yet escape the sneaking censure of those, whose station (if they were faithful in it) leads them to be far more forward in this work than we.
We therefore declare to the world, our hearty desire to embrace and adhere to the written word of God, contained in the holy scriptures of the Old and New Testaments, as the only and complete rule of faith and manners: and whatsoever is founded thereupon, or agreeable thereunto; such as our Confession of Faith, larger and shorter catechisms, directory for worship and our covenants, national and solemn league, the acknowledgment of sins and engagement to duties, the causes of God's wrath, the ordinary and perpetual officers of the church by Christ's own appointment, as pastors, doctors, elders, and deacons, and the form of church government commonly called presbyterial. We declare our adherence to all the faithful contendings for truth, whether of old or of late by ministers or professors, against whatsoever courses, whether more refined or more gross. And particularly against the publick resolutions, Cromwell's usurpation, the toleration of heresies and sects in his time. Against the sacrilegious usurpations and tyranny of Charles II. the unfaithfulness of ministers and professors in complying with him, by accepting his indulgences first and last. And in a word to every thing agreeable to the matter of our testimony, as it is declared p. 168 to 172 of our Informatory Vindication, Likewise our adherence to the testimony against the abominable toleration granted by the duke of York, given in to the ministers at Edinburgh by that faithful minister and now glorified martyr, Mr. James Renwick, Jan. 17, 1688. And to whatever faithful contendings have been made, or testimonies given against the endeavours of any, in their striving to engage us in a sinful confederacy with a malignant cause, contrary to this our testimony since the late revolutions.
Next we declare our rejecting of whatever is contradictory or contrary unto the written word of God, or not founded thereupon, either expressly, or by direct, near or necessary consequence. More particularly, we testify our detestation and abhorrence of Popery, Quakerism, Libertinism, Antinomianism, Socinianism, Anabaptism, Independency, Prelacy, and Erastianism, and all extravagancies and errors on the right or left hand, such as the doating delusions of these drawn into a consortship in and about the Cotemoore: together with all kinds of idolatry, superstition, and profaneness, and whatsoever is found contrary to sound doctrine and the power of godliness, and against every other thing, contrary to the testimony of this church, as they are particularly enumerated in pages 173, 174 of our foresaid Vindication.
And in like manner, we disown as a step of defection, declining from, and contradictory unto the covenanted reformation of the church of Scotland, and inconsistent with the testimony of our ancestors, the publishing of that declaration, called, the declaration of his highness William prince of Orange, &c. and espousing it as the state of the church and kingdom of Scotland's quarrel, while he then was, and yet is, surrounded in council and army with many of the old and inveterate enemies of Christ's cause and people, both at home in these lands and abroad, except France and his associates. His unconcernedness with the overturning the work of God in these lands these many years, till his own interest, and the call of the prelates in England, did prompt him to his undertakings. Their being set up by the suffrages of these men of blood here in Scotland, notwithstanding of their being immediately before crowned and anointed king and queen in our neighboring covenanted land, according to all the Popish ceremonies, upon their engaging on their knees, before the altar, &c. to the utmost of their power to preserve unto the bishops and clergy of that realm, and that to the churches committed to their charge, such rites and privileges as do or shall appertain unto them, or any of them.
As also, if we consider his other declaration of the reason inducing him to appear in arms in the kingdom of England, Scotland, and Ireland, emitted at the same time: Wherein he labours to put shame and contempt upon most of all the contendings of this church, and to bury many of the most material points of her testimony. Thereby declaring his principles, and what he resolved upon in his after practice: and his thereby rending and overturning that desirable uniformity in religion attained unto with England, which these lands cannot break without manifest perjury: being sworn thereto by the first article of the Solemn League and Covenant. At least it is a walking in their counsels who rent the same before him; and a corroborating and ratifying the statutes of Omri, and the works of the house of Ahab, that thereby these covenanted lands should be made a desolation, and the inhabitants thereof a hissing. Upon these and other very weighty grounds and reasons, which (if the Lord will) we may have the occasion to make known afterwards; we declare the refusal of our concurrence with the present course now on foot; it being no way concerted according to the ancient plea of the Scottish covenanters, for the covenanted reformation of religion in Britain and Ireland, for the doctrine, worship, discipline, and government of the house of God against Popery, Prelacy, Malignancy, Sectarianism, Erastianism, and whatever is contrary to sound doctrine and the power of godliness. But instead thereof, a joining and concurring with the promoters of all these, in their popish, prelatic, malignant, and sectarian designs, whereby error, profanity, and wickedness is encouraged and tolerated; the Lord highly dishonoured: his avowed and declared enemies brought into places of greatest power and trust, instead of bringing the wheel of justice over them; together with the addition of most of all those, who have been the chief ring-leaders, fomentors, and favourers of indulgences, toleration, and all other defections of this church. This quarrel we say, we refuse to espouse in lieu of that other: but to signify our displeasure therewith, refuse to concur in any thing that we know will strengthen to encourage the same, such as taking the oath of allegiance, rendezvousing at their command, paying any subsidies imposed for that end, or doing any thing that may tend to the weakening the hands or saddening the hearts of our brethren, in their honest, zealous, and faithful contending against the same. For which let all concerned see the seasonable and necessary warning of the General Assembly of this kirk to all the members thereof, July 27, 1649. Ses. 27. General Assembly, July ult. 1648. sess. 21. with the humble supplication of the assembly to the committee of estates. Aug. 2, 1648, sess. 25. Act General Assembly, Aug. 3, 1648. sess. 26. Act 4, parl. 2 Char. And what our land mourned for, Art. 9. step 5. of the causes of God's wrath. With many places of scripture, acts both of assemblies and parliaments, which are so clear, that if they were made judges, and durst come above-board to examine the present course; it were no great difficulty to the meanest capacity, to see as great disparity between this and what our fathers contended for, as between defection and reformation. But lest we should be hereby suspected of maintaining the principle of disowning all government; therefore, as for such magistrates, as being rightly and lawfully constitute over us, shall employ their power for setting the Mediator on his throne, and the crown upon his head, and in defence of his crown rights and royal prerogatives, shall act as the ministers of God in a direct line of subordination to him, in defence of our covenanted reformation, and the subjects liberties against Popery, Prelacy, Erastianism, Superstition, Heresy, Profaneness, and whatever shall be found to be contrary to sound doctrine and the power of godliness; and thus become a terror to evil-doers, and encouragers of them that do well. We declare, whensoever we can obtain and enjoy such rulers, we will own, embrace, and defend them to the utmost of our power, and prove encouraging, subject, and obedient to them in our places and station. And here, in pursuance of our former testimony, we resolve to stand and wait.
Moreover, we testify and declare against the unparalleled unfaithfulness of the ministers of Scotland, as in what they have done before these revolutions, to the detriment of the cause; so especially since, in contributing and concurring, they and all their accomplices, in their stations, and to their power, with the bulk of these old bloody and perjured enemies of Christ, his cause and people, in setting up, their highness the prince and princess of Orange king and queen over these covenanted lands, while acting directly contrary to the covenants, being without covenant qualifications, viz. of known integrity, approved fidelity, constant affection and zeal to the cause of God, such against whom there is no just cause of exception nor jealousy; which our covenants and the laws of the crown require to be in judges superior or inferior, whom we are allowed to set over us, and join with, according to Exod. xviii. 21. 2 Sam xxiii. 3, 4. Neh. vii.2, 7. Being not of one perfect religion with ourselves, neither in covenant, nor admitted covenant ways, without the sealing and swearing of which our fathers, or rather we ourselves, refused to receive Charles the Second to the crown. It being the very foundation, whereupon any right they have to govern is founded: and without the approbation and subscription whereof, the people can never have from him, sufficient security, either for religion or their just liberties. And, if the prelates in England, with their associates, were so peremptory, as not to admit him to the exercise of the government, until they had him engaged to maintain and defend that abjured hierarchy: how astonishing is it that Presbyterians should have waited, till the Lord had raised up instruments, rightly qualified, and from whom sufficient security for the covenanted reformation of the true religion in these lands might be had: and not to have made haste, in building up Zion's breaches with the stones of that burnt mountain of Babylon! Their unfaithfulness to their souls, in not representing to them the hazard they were and would be in, if they entered themselves heirs to the sins of that throne, against which the Lord hath such a long and eminent controversy, in seeking to establish his own interest upon the ruins of the interest of Jesus Christ, which is nothing else but to oppose the kingdom of the Son of God, by whom kings do reign. If he should cleave unto these men as his trusty counsellors; who, as they never had the glory of God, nor the good of his people before their eyes: so now, in all their ways and councils, are seeking nothing but their own interest, to the hazard and destruction of religion, and the desolation of the kingdoms. If he should settle a peace with God's avowed and declared enemies, the murderers of his poor innocent people, by owning them as his good and loyal subjects, upon condition of their peaceable submission to his government. And if he should employ, help, concur, or join with Antichristian forces, either at home or abroad. All which he hath done, and this day is doing; which cannot be otherwise judged but a giving his royal power and strength unto the beast: and an accession to all that blood of the Lord's people wherewith those sons of Babel have made the lands under their respective tyrannies to swim. Their unfaithfulness, in not laying plainly and seasonably to his consideration, what the mouth of the Lord of hosts hath spoken of all the accounts of people, nations, kings, and rulers against the kingdom of his Son, that they imagine a vain thing, and that he that sitteth in heaven will have them in derision, and vex them in his sore displeasure.
What marks of desperate malignancy, enmity, and hatred to the cause and people of God, hath appeared, these years bypast, in these men that now bear sway in his councils and armies. How the anger of the Lord hath been kindled, even against his dearest saints, when they have joined themselves to such men as he hateth and are cursed; and how severely he hath threatened and punished such kings, as have associate with idolaters and leaned to their helps. And next, their unfaithfulness to the poor guilty land, in not foreseeing the evil and foreshewing the danger, setting up magistrates without asking counsel at the mouth of the Lord; although a duty incumbent on faithful watchmen, to set the trumpet to their mouths in such cases, and give faithful and distinct warnings, lest Israel cast off the thing that is good, and the enemy pursue him, for setting up kings and not by God, and princes without his knowledge. Nor yet declaring the sin and danger of associating in war with known enemies of truth and godliness, such as are employed in the present expedition: Whereby a door is opened for the introduction, toleration, and encouragement of Papists, Malignants, and sectaries. And the state of the quarrel, instead of being rightly proposed, according to the ancient plea against both right and left hand opposites; it is thereby betrayed, lost, and buried. Add to all these, their pretended fasts and thanksgivings, for success and prosperity to the enemies of God, his church and people: whereby the Lord is mocked, his truths buried, the people's souls ensnared, the godly stumbled, a course of reformation, rather buried than raised, prosecuted or defended, and a malignant quarrel embraced; yea, that same course which hath been always cursed of God, and upon which he hath set evident marks of his displeasure. The public sin, for which he is this day contending against the land: and the Achan which made Israel so oft to fall before his enemies.
Now, if this be no false charge, as, alas! it is not: and if these be not only pieces of unfaithfulness, but manifest breaches of covenant, and very great steps of defection from the principles and practices of the once famous church of Scotland, as indeed they are; and if our hearing and joining with them, will infer a concurrence with their course, a participation of their guilt: and a rendering of us obnoxious to the judgments to which the breach of the covenant is liable: Since it is such a communion, as in the present circumstances is interpreted by all to be a tessera of incorporation with them, and a sign of approbation of their way, with which all must be interpreted consenters that are not contradictors. And likewise a laying down of our former testimony, before the courses testified against be forsaken, as none will deny. Then we see not, how any honest man, zealous Christian, or faithful minister can condemn us, for declaring our cheerful resolution, in the Lord's strength, to stand off, and not to concur with them in this their new and strange way, by hearing them, paying their stipends, observing their fasts or thanksgiving days, compearing before their kirk-sessions, presbyteries, synods, general assemblies or the like. But on the contrary, to protest and testify against the constitution of these ecclesiastic meetings: in regard they are made up of such a corrupt mixture of members. Some of them having embraced indulgences; some having given bond to the council, not to preach for an indefinite or longer or shorter time. Some having ordinarily heard, and communicated with curates. Some having come under sinful bonds of peace and oaths of allegiance, and the like, to the persecuting adversaries, repugnant to the oath of our covenants. Against the breaches of which covenants, we testify, and against all the injuries or affronts that have been or are offered to the same by the ministers in Scotland, in not preaching the perpetual obligation of them, nor renewing them; neither discovering particularly the breaches thereof: yea, many not once mentioning them in the engagements which they require of parents, when they present their children to baptism, or in their licensing and ordaining of persons to that holy function of the ministry.
Oh! how astonishing! The like not to be heard among the heathen, that these solemn vows and covenants should not only be scorned, derided, openly burnt, and made a capital crime to own them, by open and avowed adversaries, but also cast by and buried by the ministers of the church of Scotland, called Presbyterians. A covenant, without the swearing of which, none was capable of the meanest employment either in church or state. A covenant, to which Christ's witnesses did always adhere, and for which they did suffer and contend. That covenant which the representatives of church and state in the three kingdoms, did solemnly swear and subscribe for themselves and posterity; to which the obligation, either as to the duty or punishment, continues indispensible upon the generation; which for the moral equity of its matter, the formality of its manner, the importance of its purpose, the holiness of its solemn engagement, and the glory of its ends; no power on earth can disannul, disable, or dispense. That covenant, which was justly thought a fit and excellent mean, not only to strengthen and fortify the kingdoms against the common enemy of the true reformed religion, public peace and prosperity; but also, to acquire the favour of Almighty God towards the three kingdoms of Scotland, England, and Ireland, as is exprest in the ordinance of the Lords and Commons, dated February 2d, 1643. Surely then, the authors and chief instruments of the breaches of that covenant, are to be looked upon as those that strengthen the hands of the common enemy, and provoke the wrath of Almighty God against those kingdoms. And if by the Declaration of both kingdoms, joined in arms, anno 1643, such as would not take the covenant, are declared to be public enemies to their religion and country, and to be censured and punished as public adversaries and malignants; who seeth not now a strange falling away from these first principles and professions, among these who either magnify or cry up, or at least connive at or comply with such as have not taken the covenant; yea, are known enemies to it.
Yet notwithstanding, these same enemies have been complied with and connived at, by many ministers, in their taking oaths imposed by them, repugnant, we say, to the oath of our covenants. And others of them having gone on in sundry other steps of defection: and to no small contradiction of Christ's most faithful sufferers and witnesses; most part having addressed for, and accepted of the late Antichristian toleration, and to this day are treading the same paths that lead to defection, and to a detestable indifferency and neutrality in the Lord's matters, without any shadow of their cordial abandoning such woful courses; but on the contrary, A wiping of the mouth, and saying, We have done no evil: a fasting, praying, and giving thanks for success and prosperity to those who have devoured Jacob and laid his habitation desolate; under whose shadow they enjoy this unhallowed ease, as if they were delivered to retain and maintain all these abominations. Can such a work be of God? Can tender zealous souls concur with it in faith? Or can it stand, which hath its foundation laid upon the ruins of truth? Such a superstructure, as building up Zion with blood, and Jerusalem with iniquity? Such measures, being bounded by the decrees of God's enemies; and such workers, who by the word of God and decrees of our church, would be suspended, if not deposed from their office, and brought in as delinquents to undergo censure, and not as constituent members of a judicatory; in regard they have yielded up the liberties of the church into the hands and will of her enemies; and in regard they carry on a course of defection, contrary to the scriptures, our covenants, and the acts and constitutions of this church.
We say again, upon these grounds, we in our places and stations, testify against all that they may conclude or determine in these their ecclesiastic courts, by acts, ratifications, declarations, sentences, censures, or commissions, &c. That shall be made or given out by them: and protests that the same may be void and null, and not interpreted as binding to the church of Scotland. But let none think, that what we have here said can be interpreted to be a villipending or rejecting of the free, lawful, and rightly constitute courts of Christ: for we do acknowledge such to have been among the first and most effectual means appointed of God, for preserving the purity, and advancing the power of reformation in the church; the sweet fruits and blessed effects whereof, this church hath sometime enjoyed; which we have endeavoured after, and are this day longing for.
We detest and abhor that principle of casting off the ministry, wherewith we are maliciously calumniated, by those who labour to fasten upon us the odious names of schismatics and separatists, despisers of the gospel, and the like. But as herein they bewray their enmity to the cause we own; so till they bring their own principles and practices, and ours both, and try them by the law and the testimony, the measuring line of the sanctuary, the word of God, and the practice of this church, when the Lord kept house with her, and rejoiced over her as a bridegroom over the bride. They can never prove us schismatics or separatists from the kirk of Scotland, upon the account of our non-union with the backsliding multitude therein. And herein we may have a sure and well grounded hope, that when the Lord shall decide the controversy in favours of truth: in that day, union in truth and duty, and separation, sinfully considered, will be otherwise applied than now they are. Besides, we may say (without boasting) we suppose it may be gathered from what we have done for the faithfully preached gospel, and what love and respect we have shown towards faithful ministers, whilst such: what our carriage to them would yet be if we had them, yea, we are so far from having any stated prejudice (as some foolishly think) at any of them, for whatever their strayings have been either as ministers or Christians; that we declare by these presents whenever the Lord shall send us such, as out of love to God, zeal for his public concernments, and conscience of their duty, will kythe their resentment of their former backslidings and defections, by condemning and forsaking the same, and satisfy the offended consciences of the Lord's people, by their public declaring the mind of God faithfully and freely, and the people's duty in order to the past and present courses of the time; keeping nothing back that may be profitable for our building up in holiness, our managing a testimony for Christ, against all the forementioned or the like steps of defection; and that the same may be faithfully transmitted to the succeeding generations, that they may know what the Lord hath done for our land, and may not be like their fathers, a race not right in heart with God, unsteadfast and perfidious in his covenant: upon these conditions, and upon removal of just exceptions, we promise our hearty concurrence with them, in hearing them, and to do every other thing that precept or former practice to ministers in the like case, can oblige persons in our circumstances to do to, or for their faithful leaders, to whom they may safely, without scruple, commit the charge of their souls: withal protesting, that this our declaration may be a standing answer to all the lies, reproaches, misinformations, or misrepresentations, or whatsoever, that shall be brought in against us in time coming, by whatsoever party or persons, upon the account of our non-confederating with them, seeing what we here require, is both religious and reasonable. And seeing what we own is of no new extraction, but was esteemed truth before we had a tongue to speak for it, and we hope, shall be so, when its enemies and betrayers shall want a mouth to speak against it.
And now, having thus declared our testimony in as compendious and innocent a way, as the nature and circumstances of it will allow, as we are not altogether ignorant what acception it shall find from persons of all tempers, to whose hands it may come; so especially from those ministers, Mr. Alexander Shields, Mr. Thomas Linning, Mr. William Boyd, and others their accomplices, who have lately gone from us and left us, after the Lord (in his mercy to us) had frustrate their design of precipitating us into a confederacy with all those to whom the nations are saying, a confederacy, by regimenting and uniting with the destroyers and betrayers of the cause, and that both in church and state; and casting in our lots, and interweaving our interests with theirs; as they had done with many of our brethren before, and also with many of ourselves, which this day we desire to mourn for, and long for that day wherein we may confess the same before a competent and faithful judicatory. But if we durst say, that what we have here done, was not intended to please ourselves, so neither to give just ground of irritation or stumbling to any of the Lord's people. And as for the wicked, who know not at what they stumble, we may warrantably say, it was not designed to please them, be the event what will. Only this, to let the indifferent and lukewarm party on the one hand know, that the Lord is keeping up a handful to witness for him, against their past and present rotten courses of defection, notwithstanding their cutting off the hair, and putting out the eyes of these three ministers before-mentioned, and carrying them in their printed acts and letters through the nations, as trophies of their victory over them; as men, whose former lives and doctrine had been contrary to the former rules and principles of the church, nourishing and encouraging schism, division and defection, and their former testimonies made up in many things of several peremptory gross mistakes, uncharitable and injurious reflections tending rather to kindle contentions, than remove divisions. All which are plainly insinuated in their act, called, the proceedings of the assembly anent Mr. Linning and others. Thereby labouring, through them, to reach a blow to the cause of God, and to all the faithful witnesses and witnessings of the poor remnant with whom they were once embarked. And the malignant party may also know, that we look upon them as the murderers of our dear brethren, whose blood, as it is precious in God's sight, so no human power can indemnify, for though it be God's glory to pardon yet man's duty and glory is, to administer justice impartially. We are not changed from our former principles and intentions, but our cause is the same, whatever those who have fallen off from us may plead for. And finally, we desire all Persons, of whatsoever new party they be, minister or other, that would appear more refined than the rest, and pretending to act separately from our enemies and antagonists, whilst yet really incorporate with them, and carrying on their designs more effectually, though more smoothly; and instrumental, to break and divide us more than any, as if purposely sent forth by the rest for that effect; not to mistake us, as if what we have said in order to the rest, were not applicable to them. But on the contrary, that we look upon their course, as accompanied with many aggravations that others are not capable of, and so, as more loathsome to God ought to be the more detestable to us. And as for neutralists, who account it wisdom to condemn all, and pretend to side with none, we refer them to the last article of the Solemn League and Covenant (without forgetting the rest) namely, "that we shall assist and defend all that enter into this league and covenant, in the maintaining and pursuing thereof, and shall not suffer ourselves, directly nor indirectly, by whatsoever combination, persuasion or terror, to be divided or withdrawn from this blessed union and conjunction; whether to make defection to the contrary part, or to give ourselves to a detestable indifferency and neutrality in this cause." According to which article, mens reality and integrity in the covenant will be manifest and demonstrable, as well by their omissions as by their commissions, as well by their not doing good as by their doing of evil. He that is not with us, is against us, and he that gathereth not with us, scattereth: And however our complaints be this day tossed with tempests and not comforted; yet we hope he hath thoughts of peace and purpose of mercy towards us. We do not mourn as those without hope; but we will bear the indignation of the Lord, because we have sinned against him, until he plead our cause and execute judgment for us. He hath lifted up our enemies that their fall may be the greater: and that he may cast them down into desolation for ever. He will make his cause to triumph at last, over all opposition, and the enemy's foot to slide in due time: and so put a new song of praise in the mouths of all the faithful friends and followers of the Lamb.
Therefore we appoint and ordain, that incontinently, ye our emissaries, pass, upon the tenth day of August 1692 years unto the market cross of Sanquhar, and there, by open proclamation, make intimation of this our declaration, leaving copies of the same affixed upon the foresaid market cross, and other patent places of the kingdom necessary. Given ——— upon the tenth day of August 1692 years.
Let King JESUS reign, and let all his enemies be scattered.
Note Well: For this noble Declaration, Sir Robert Hamilton and others suffered imprisonment during the reign of William & Mary—that time of "toleration" which followed the "glorious" Revolution.—JTKer.