Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth.—Rom. 8.33

[Two Letters Concerning Mr. Patrick Walker, and his many lies, etc. by William Wilson and Andrew Harley.]
 
TWO LETTERS
Concerning
Mr. Patrick Walker,
AND HIS MANY LIES
Spoken since his Apostacy from the
Reformation.
TrueCovenanter.com Editor’s Note:

The following letters are here provided primarily for the following reasons: (1) To vindicate the truth concerning various facts contradicted in the writings of Mr. Patrick Walker; and, (2) To satisfy the curiosity of those who desire to learn more of the history of those times when the Dissenters from the established institutions of Church and State, after the Revolution in Scotland, endeavoured to build up that which had been cast down of the great work of reformation once glorious in that land while she upheld her National Covenant. However, a few words of warning must be noted concerning these letters before the reader examine them, especially the latter of Mr. Harley.

As for Mr. Wilson, his words are often very sharp, but it is clear that both he and Mr. Harley saw this as merited by Mr. Walker, and necessary to a faithful expression of that disapproval of Mr. Walker and his lies that was due. While we may approve such things in reference to Mr. Walker, we cannot approve the use of such a tone in all circumstances, nor especially approve Mr. Wilson's harsh words elsewhere directed at John McMillan. For a vindication of Mr. McMillan from the accusations of Mr. Wilson, the reader may see McMillan Junior's Letter to the Author of Vindiciæ Magistratus. Other than his personal controversy with Mr. McMillan and the Reformed Presbytery, he seems to have been a zealous dissenter who sought to follow the good old way the best that he was able, and refrained from turning aside to the bypaths found out by some of the dissenters in his time.

As for Mr. Harley, he was one of these misled dissenters, who had found out the bypath of ministerial usurpation. Thus, the most significant warning that we must mention concerning him is his approval of Adamson's usurpation upon the ministry and his attempt to vindicate this course (which he was also guilty of) by appealing to a few phrases of our great reformers, who themselves had never taken such courses, nor advised such courses for others. While we desire not to bring any blot or accusation upon Messrs. Rutherford, Gillespie, or any of those sometimes cited to defend usurpers upon the ministry in "extraordinary times" as though "the people's election could stand in the room of ordination," we must say this: that the Bible knows no such calling to the Ministry. With our Covenanter forefathers, we must condemn this course as blasphemous presumption and intolerable usurpation upon the prerogatives of Jesus Christ, who has it in his power to care for his church by whatsoever means he will, in every age, and needs not the help of men who trust too much in the work of their own hands. Thus, as the faithful dissenters of his day, Mr. Wilson himself also bore testimony against "the sinful intrusion of John and Andrew Harlaws, once in Cotmuir, who, after they had fallen into several doting delusions, did usurp the holy office of the ministry of the Gospel, without being any way qualified for the same; without the trial and ordination of any presbytery, and without any lawful call thereunto, either ordinary or extraordinary," (Calderwood's Collection of Dying Testimonies, 1806, pp. 375, 376.) Lastly, let the reader be warned that there are a few phrases in Mr. Harley's letter that are worded so as to have a savour somewhat less orthodox than were to be desired, suggesting: (1) that every godly Christian has some Knowledge of when he first met with Christ, which may not be true in all circumstances, and (2) that because the Lord looks more to Matter than to Form in the performance of our duties, therefore we may take upon ourselves to dispense with that Form that is appointed by the Lord, from which Mr. Harley argues for the more "heroic" course adopted by him and others in comparison to the admittedly more faithful followers of James Renwick who had come to identify themselves with Mr. McMillan.


A
LETTER
To PATRICK WALKER,
BY WILLIAM WILSON,
Schoolmaster in Park of Douglas.
SIR,
SOME time ago I saw a Pamphlet, published by you, bearing the title of Some Remarkable Passages of the Life and Death of Mr. John Semple, &c. in which I found so many lies, that the very reading of it gave me ground to complain of you in the words of Jeremiah, Jere. 9.3, and they bend their tongues like their bows for lies: but they are not valiant for the truth upon the earth. What moved you to such an undertaking is best known to yourself. But be your design what it will, you have not consulted truth therein; and therefore you have no reason to expect that the truth in this shall make you free. It is owing to your logick, and for your own self ends, that you give such a false and feigned commendation to our late honoured Martyrs; while, in the mean time, you condemn others for owning the same truths, and word of Christ’s patience, which our Martyrs owned and sealed with their blood. No doubt this is to make your wares go better off among simple dealers who take too much upon trust. But to any considering person, it will be found that the same persons who overcame by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their Testimony, and loved not their lives unto the death, Rev. 12.11, {324} are also condemned by you, since that which you make a vice in others could not be a virtue in them, so, he that hath a right discerning, may see, that for all the feigned applause you pretend to give to our highly honoured Martyrs, you condemn them as far as you do the present Sufferers who own the same cause which they owned and sealed with their blood. And so you may consider whether or not it is Jesus whom you persecute, and how hard a thing it is for you to kick against the pricks, Acts 9.5.

Pages 90, 91. You say that there are none now that own the Testimony in all its parts for which our Martyrs suffered. But this is utterly false. For although the faithful witnesses who are now owning the word of Christ’s patience are that few that a child may write them, Isa. 10.19, yet, since Scotland is the rod of the Lord’s inheritance which he redeemed, and where he dwelt in time past, Psalm 74.1, and the place which he hath desired for his habitation, and rest for ever, where he will dwell, Psalm 132.13,14, he will never want some, more or fewer, to own his covenanted cause in all the parts thereof. For the Lord will not cast off his people, neither will he forsake his own inheritance so far as to leave us altogether without remnant or escaping, Psalm 94.14, Ezra 9.8. And the declarations published since the woeful Revolution are standing witnesses that there are yet a small remnant in Scotland who are still owning all the parts of Reformation that ever was attained unto in Scotland and sealed with the blood of our late renowned Martyrs. And you, and other enemies of the truth, who say otherwise, shall be found liars, Deut. 33.29, as long as there are two or three steadfast owners of that cause to meet together in Christ’s name, Matth. 18.19,20. {325}

Page 81. I find you condemn the disowning of the present pretended Magistrates, and separation from this Erastian Church, as dangerous unprecedented paths. But in this you speak very falsely. For since both our greatest Reformers and most faithful Martyrs were against owning of Prelacy and Erastianism, to that degree as to abjure the same in the solemn league and covenant, and engagement to duties entered into in the year 1648, and to seal a Testimony with their blood, both against the one and the other, the disowning of profane Prelaticks to be lawful Magistrates, and refusing to own and join with Erastians as lawful Ministers, is no unprecedented, but a well-precedented path, that all the true lovers of truth will make choice to walk in, though such old apostates as you, who have put away a good conscience, and made shipwreck of faith, 1 Tim. 1.19, can take no pleasure therein: But to shew your enmity against the truth doth what you can to reproach others for owning that which you have apostatized from. For the disowning of the present pretended Magistrates, and this Erastian Church, are nothing else but a refusing to join in a sinful confederacy with such as have made defection from our covenanted work of Reformation, and all Scriptures which condemn sinful confederacy by precept, as Exod. 23.32,33; Exod. 34.12; Deut. 12.5; Isa. 8.12; By reproofs, as Judges 2.1-3; Jer. 2.18; By practice, as 1 Kings 20.32; 2 Chron. 16; 18; 19; 20.35; 25.7,10; 28.16; 1 Kings 22.44; or, by complaints and confession, as Psalm 106.53; Ezra 9.14; justifies their practice who refuse to join in such confederacies. And they can do no otherwise without transgressing all Scripture precepts which enjoin steadfastness and stability in Religion, as Heb. 10.23; Gal. 5.1; Phil. 5.16; 1 Cor. 16.13; Jude, verse 3; 1 Tim. 1.13; {326} 1 Cor. 15.ult.; 2 Pet. 3.17; Phil. 1.27; Phil. 4.1; 2 Thess. 2.15; Eph. 6.14; Rev. 3.1. I wish, Sir, you could be convinced that the promise of salvation is to such as hold their integrity to the end, Matth. 10.22; 1 Thess. 3.8; Heb. 3.14; that so you may repent, and do your first works, Rev. 2.5; for you have gone into very heinous courses of defection since you departed from the truth at the unhappy Revolution.

Page 82. You find fault with Dissenters for calling the Informatory Vindication theirs; and say, that no human writing strikes more directly against their measures.

Sir, it is no presumption in these people to call the Informatory Vindication theirs, who own the Testimony of the Church of Scotland, as it is stated therein. And as you would desire to escape the censure of being reputed a liar, I desire you to prove, that either in profession or practice, the true Presbyterians of the Church of Scotland do walk inconsistent with the Testimony, as stated in the Informatory Vindication, with respect to either Magistrates or Ministers; for, until you prove this, you must be pleased to bear the infamy of being a false accuser of the brethren.

Page 84. With a very shameless confidence you affirm that Dissenters separate from Ministers whom they cannot charge with any actual step of defection. But this is utterly false, since there are no Ministers in Scotland but such as are guilty of many actual steps of defection. Yea, interpretatively, they are all guilty of all the defections that this nation is guilty of since the year 1649—such as the Public Resolutions, Prelacy, Perjury, Tyranny, Indulgency, Indemnity, Toleration, Erastianism, &c. But I am at a loss to know what you may {327} call defection. For your advocating the cause of the present backslidden Erastian Ministers gives me ground of jealousy, that if you had been in Jeroboam’s time you would not have accounted the setting up of the calves at Dan and Bethel to have been defection, nor owned that the priests of the High Places were actually guilty of such a sin, 1 Kings 12.28, &c.; or that King Ahaz, his sacrilegiously spoiling of the temple, and sending the fashion and pattern of the altar of Damascus, and Urijah, the priest’s building of the Idolatrous Altar, 2 Kings chapter 16, had either defection from the truth, or was actually guilty. Or, that Jehoshaphat sinned by his confederacy with Ahab; or that the false prophets were actually guilty who encouraged the same, 1 Kings chapter 22; 2 Chronicles chapter 18.

Yea, Sir, I much doubt if you would have reckoned these actually guilty of defection, who transgressed the law, changed the ordinances, and brake the everlasting covenant, Isa. 24.5, since you plead for persons whose sins are not unlike to these; for, instead of Jeroboam’s golden calves, we have had abjured prelacy set up. For Ahaz, his sacrilege against the temple, we have these abominable men who are called kings, their blasphemous sacrilege against Jesus Christ, (who is greater than the temple,) whom they have robbed of his prerogatives Royal, as he is King and head of His Church. And as Rehoboam changed and set up in the temple shields of brass for shields of gold, so we have in our temple a woeful change made by pretended kings and statesmen; even abominable Erastianism for pure Presbyterian Church Government. And the pattern of prayers and other things must come to our Erastian Priests from Damascus, viz. that Idolatrous Court called the British Parliament, Bishops, and others; and they must {328} be fashioned according to the same. We have sinful confederacies with idolaters, and flattering court qualified Preachers, praying for success and prosperity to the same. The law of the Lord is broken, his ordinances changed, and as solemn covenants as ever a nation entered into with the Lord, are broken, burnt, and buried in oblivion; whereof all ranks in the land are guilty. And yet, although the Erastian Ministers are chief in this guilt, you have got on such a brow of brass, as to say that Dissenters withdraw from Ministers who are not actually guilty of defection; but you might with as much safety say, that Jeroboam’s priests at Dan and Bethel were not actually guilty of idolatry.

Page 85. You say that separation from all hardens the actually guilty. This is another falsehood; for to note that man, that is actually guilty, and to have no company with him, that he may be ashamed, 2 Thess. 3.14, is not the way to harden, but to reclaim him from his evil ways; whereas countenancing any man in an evil course is the only way to strengthen his hands, and harden his heart therein, that he may not turn from the evil of his doings.

In the same page you say that Dissenters have deprived themselves of some soul-refreshing blinks of the Gospel, which some of the Lord’s people can tell from experience. It is false that Dissenters have deprived themselves of the preached Gospel; for it is the defections of Ministers which hath deprived them of this soul-comforting ordinance, which they long for in a right way, and desire to be humbled for all sins in themselves or others that are the procuring causes thereof. And if you have the Lord’s presence at these Erastian meetings which you frequent, it must be in the way of sovereign mercy that there is not a promise in all the Bible {329} for; for the Lord never promises his presence to any when out of the way of their duty; yet, in his sovereign mercy to Paul, the Lord met with him when he was going a very sinful journey to Damascus, Acts 9.1-10. But this ought to encourage no man to do evil, that good may come of it, Rom. 3.8.

Page 101. You falsely represent Dissenters as if they held every difference in judgment to be a ground of separation; whereas the Informatory Vindication (which they still own) shews the very contrary in these words, Informatory Vindication, page 65, ‘Difference in judgment is not sufficient to found withdrawing, if it either be in things indifferent in their own nature, that may be done or not done, after this manner, or after another, without any breach of a divine precept,’ &c.

Page 108. You say that Mr. Renwick said several times to you, that he durst never preach withdrawing from all the Ministers of Scotland. If Mr. Renwick said this with respect to Mr. Houston and Mr. Shields when they were joined with him, and owning the same cause and Testimony which he owned, it helps you nothing; for all honest Dissenters would willingly hear any Ministers preach who were as sound in the faith, as blameless in their conversation, and as faithful in owning the Lord’s cause and Testimony, as famous Mr. James Renwick was; and as Mr. Houston and Mr. Shields were at that time when they were joined with famous Mr. Renwick. But if you say that Mr. Renwick said this of such Ministers as were in his time, involved in the common courses of defection, then you speak like yourself, very falsely; for he taught his hearers both by doctrine and practice to separate from all such.

Pages 85, 86. When speaking of the Dissenters declarations (after the Revolution,) you have several lies and {330} contradictions not worth noticing. Yet, like Balaam, who sometimes spake the truth against his will, you speak this truth, that it was the persecuted Presbyterians in Scotland that disowned the Prince of Orange to be king: for this they did to their lasting honour.

That the declaration against the Union was a Popish contrivance, and that the Pretender’s interest was couched in it, and that the Laird of Kersland persuaded the publishers thereof to disown the state, (which they had long before disowned,) are such horrid lies, that for these, and the rest of the lies that you have made on Dissenters in this Pamphlet, you have reason to fear that you have given just cause to apply this unto you, Psalm 120.3,4, What shall be given unto thee? Or what shall be done unto thee thou false tongue? Sharp arrows of the mighty, with coals of Juniper.

Pages 89, 90. While making a vain-glorious boasting of your own suffering, you fall a-wondering how Dissenters (if in peril of their necks and the bloody rope) would get strength, confidence, and support, to set up their face, and disown King William, and King George, as you call them. But this need be no wonder, if it be not to an Atheist, who denies the Power of God. For since God is unchangeable, he is equal in power and might, at all times, to give strength, confidence, and support to his People, when called to suffer for his sake, to own his cause, and to disown his avowed enemies; such as these pretended Kings, William and George. For he calls none to suffer at any time upon their own charges, but is both a present help in the time of their trouble, and makes his strength perfect in their weakness. For since he forsakes his Saints in no case, he will not forsake them in a time of suffering for his sake, if they be faithful therein, till he perfects what concerns {331} them. For his hand is never shortened that it cannot save, nor his ear heavy that it cannot hear, 1 Cor. 9.7; Psalm 46.1; 2 Cor. 12.9; Psalm 37.28; Psalm 138.ult.; Isaiah 59.1. And it is a very high presumption in you to limit the Lord, as if he were not able to give as much confidence and support to his People, to disown the pretended Kings, William and George; as he gave them to disown Charles Stewart, and the Duke of York. And, Sir, you may remember very well, that the Lord called some to the trial for disowning the pretended King William, in the year 1692. Such as that excellent, pious, godly, and zealous gentlemen, Sir Robert Hamilton of Preston; and others of the godly in this land, who were imprisoned in the Tollbooths of Edinburgh, and Canongate, from the 10th of September 1692, to the 4th of May 1693, who, when they were brought before, and examined by their enemies, disowned the pretended King William; when they knew no other thing but that death might follow thereupon. And this is a proof that the Lord’s all-sufficiency hath manifested itself to his people as well since, as before the unhappy Revolution. And there is no ground to fear that the Lord will fail at any time, in making out of his promises, to such as he calls to witness a good confession for him. For God doth not change when Apostates like you turn their coats and abandon the truth.

It sufficeth you not to be a false Historian, but you must also be a false Prophet, by telling the world, page 129, That if Mr. Renwick had survived the Revolution, according to his former principles and conclusions, laid down in the Informatory Vindication, there is ground to conclude, that he would have taken part with the humble pleaders. But since the Lord provided {332} some better thing for that great Saint of God, faithful Minister, and now glorified Martyr, Mr. James Renwick, of whom the world was not worthy, Heb. 11.38, than suffer him to be witness to the fatal stroke, that Truth received at the woeful Revolution; you might have saved yourself a labour of putting this infamy upon his memory, by drawing such a false conclusion from your own and others’ apostacy; that he would have taken part with such Truth-deserters as the humble pleaders are: who, after the woeful Revolution, joined with the defections of this sad sinning time; and ever since have continued in their breaches, and stood on the other side, in opposition to the Lord’s faithful suffering Remnant. Faithful Mr. James Renwick in his own time, had the temptation of joining with men who were more refined-like than the humble pleaders; viz. Mr. George Barclay, Mr. Robert Langlands, and the rest of Argyle’s associates. But his faithfulness in the Lord’s cause made his soul abhor all such sinful unions and confederacies. And there is nothing that you can speak or write, that can be more false, than to say that Mr. Renwick’s principles and conclusions laid down in the Informatory Vindication are agreeable to the way of the humble pleaders. For his principles and conclusions are agreeable to the word of God, our confession of faith, covenants, and covenanted work of reformation. Whereas their way is only a course of conformity with backsliding and defection, which is contrary to the word of God, our Confession of Faith, Covenants, and Covenanted Work of Reformation.

From page 61 to page 70, you give an account of your own conduct, in going to hear Andrew Harley, Mr. Adamson, and Mr. Taylor preach; at which occasions you say you got your errand. From which I observe, {333}

1. That the great end of edification is not what you intend by hearing of preaching.

2. That it is by the hearing of the ear, and not by the unerring Rule of God’s word, that you try preachers. Contrary to the word of God, which sends us to the Law and to the Prophets to try the spirits, whether they be of God or not, Isaiah 8.20, 1 John 4.1.

3. That this way of wavering shews you to be a man of no principle nor stability at all, since you are tossed to and fro with every wind of divers and strange doctrines; contrary to the word of God, which forbids such practices, Eph. 4.14; Heb. 13.9. I wish you may not be found among those who think that gain is Godliness, since, by your running here and there to catch what you can of every party, your Pamphlets are swelled, and the price made the greater.

Pages 60, 89, 90. You speak like a vain glorious boaster concerning your own suffering, without taking notice of these things,

  1. That the Law of Faith excludes boasting, Rom. 3.27.
  2. That suffering without true love to the Lord and his cause can bring no advantage to the sufferer, 1 Cor. 13.3, &c. And that apostacy is a sure evidence of want of true love to the Lord and his righteous cause.
  3. That the Crown of Life is promised to such only as are faithful to the end, Matth. 10.22; Rev. 2.10.
  4. That the Lord hath no pleasure in backsliders; but hath declared that they are unfit for the Kingdom of Heaven, and shall be led forth with the workers of iniquity, Heb. 10.38; Luke 9.62; Psalm 125.5.
In several places of your Pamphlet, you speak of the knowledge which you had of the testimony in the time of persecution. But, considering the unhappy courses {334} of defection that you are gone into since, you have no reason to boast, considering what the Apostle Peter saith, 2 Peter 2.21, For it had been better for them not to have known the way of Righteousness, than after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them.

Towards the end of your Pamphlet you say, that you would esteem it above all that the sun shines upon, to seal the scope, design, and matter of what you have written with your blood. And by this, like the adulterous woman, you wipe your mouth as if you had done no wickedness, Proverbs 30.20. For if this Pamphlet be what you allow the world for your Last Testimony, it looks too like one going down to the grave with a lie in his right hand, Isa. 44.20.

You promise your reader several other things which you say you have to publish. But if you will take my advice, the first thing that you will publish, will be a retraction of all the lies and falsehoods that you have already published against the Truth and its Owners.

So wishing that the Lord may plead his own cause, decide all controversies in Truth’s favour, and stop the mouth of liars, in wishing you repentance for your apostasies, and other sins, I end.

WILLIAM WILSON.
PARK OF DOUGLAS,
December 9th, 1727.

A
LETTER
 From a certain Person in the City,  to
    his Friend in the Country.
WHEREIN
 Some  of  the  false  Calumnies  cast
    upon the Truth, and Witnesses, by
    Patrick Walker, are vindicated.
Proverbs, xi. 9. An Hypocrite with his Mouth destroyeth his Neighbour; but through Knowledge shall the Just be delivered. And xii. 19. The Lip of Truth shall be established for ever, but a lying Tongue is but for a Moment.

Acts, xx. 30. Also of your own selves shall Men arise, speaking perverse Things, to draw away Disciples after them.

1 John, ii. 19. They went out from us, but they were not of us, for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us, but they went out, that they might be made manifest, that they were not all of us.

Dear Friend,
AS I take up yours, this is the Scope. You desire me to say, first, something concerning your self, and how you shall know, if ye be exercised unto Godliness, and if your Lamps be burning. 2dly, You desire me to tell you the Truth concerning Patrick Walker, and what truth is in what he saith concerning the Dissenters.

Without any Compliments, I shall proceed as the Lord doth assist me, and in his Strength, according to {336} any small Measure God hath given me; but I must acknowledge, as to the first of these, I am most unfit, yet I shall throw my small Mite into the Treasury; for I hope, some qualified Person of the Dissenters, will undeceive the World concerning that Man, and his Communications.

However, as to the first, I hope, I need not be tedious, in having any long Discourse concerning the first Principles of Christianity to you. I hope, you have a competent Measure of the Knowledge of these, and also your Judgment and Understanding is sound concerning all these controverted Truths, that have been contended for these 60 Years: And I hope, you are sound enough as to the Covenants, and Work of Reformation, between 1648 and 1649. And that you are not ignorant, of the fearful Apostacy of this Church, and of their treacherous dealing, and Covenant-breaking, and Perjury, so that I need not detain you with these.

I will therefore briefly shew my Opinion. As to the thing you demand. You’re to know, (and oh that I could express it with suitable Grief) that the Lamps are gone out in the Temple of the Lord, and the Ark hath been a long Time under Curtains, as to any Thing of the Lord’s making his Truth and Glory triumph before the World. The Ark hath been now a long Time in the Wilderness, and in the House of Obed-edom, so that you are much deprived of the blessed Waters of the Sanctuary, the River, the Streams whereof make glad the City of God, one Place is rained upon, and not another, and ’tis but seldom you enjoy his Ark in his holy Habitation. However, Glory to God, he is in every Place, where he is worshipped in Spirit and in Truth, and Glory to him, you know, hath not been wanting, sometimes to make us sensible, where the House of God, and the Gates of Heaven {337} was, by making his Glory fill our Tabernacle, and make the Name of our Habitation be, The Lord is there. But as to the Answer of your first Question, you shall have it in these few Particulars. First, That Christian, whose Lamp is burning, and is exercised unto Godliness, they are very well acquaint with their own Heart, they have some Knowledge when they first met with Christ, and when he pitched his Tent in their Heart. 2dly, What Progress and Growth they have made in Sanctification, since they had any Evidence of Justification. 3dly, They can distinctly distinguish between the Lord’s hiding of his Face, and the Enjoyment of him. Observe the Spouse in the 3rd Chapter of the Canticles, the first 3 verses, a great deal of Distinctness concerning herself, and in the 4th verse, most sensible when the Lord returned. 4thly, A Person whose Lamp is burning, and is exercised unto Godliness, will behold in themselves all those blessed Signs. 1st, A Progress in new Obedience. 2dly, A fervent Mind. 3dly, A Spirit of Grace and Supplication. 4thly, A broken and circumcised Heart, and not only those in Fits, or good Modes [Moods], but in blessed Habits, so that the present Leprosy of the Time will be a great Terror to them, which is an enlightened Judgment, without a sanctified Mind; for there are some, who will go into the highest Pinnacle of Strictness in Judgment, and yet be most lax in Practice. 5thly, They will not content themselves with former Attainments, or Experiences of what the Lord hath done formerly, but whatever was their Measures of new Obedience, in the Kindness of Youth, and Love of Espousals, still these continuing, when come to old Age, in a Progress in Mortification, and new Obedience. I have many a Time thought upon, that of the Epistle to the Colossians, The Apostle in the 1st and 2nd Chapters commends {338} them highly, yet he says, in the first of the 3 Chapter, If ye be risen with Christ, seek those Things which are above, and so warns them of the most gross Acts of Wickedness, in the 5th verse: And I have seen some make a great Flourish at the first, and yet become fearful Examples of Apostacy, in Covetousness, and Unmortifiedness, even when their Judgment and Understanding has remained, so that ’tis rare to see in the Christian World, these Two go together, an enlightened Judgment, and a sanctified Mind.

Now, as to the second Thing proposed, an Account of that Man, I must really apologize for some Sharpness of Expression, in speaking of him, for the Case is such, that none can faithfully disclose his Wickedness, without such Expressions as are suitable. I abhor Railing, and was once thinking, it was needless to say any Thing about it, but referring to the Lord, who can rebuke a lying Spirit, and in his due Time stop the Liar’s Mouth; yet since ’tis desired, for the sake of the young Generation, ’tis thought fit, to answer this Fool according to his Folly, lest he be wise in his own Conceit, and it is very just, that Truth take its turn in the Gate, as well as Falsehood.

But I shall proceed, he is the Dross of that Furnace, that so much precious Gold came out of, I mean, he is one of that Remnant, that outlived the late Persecution, for when the choice Piece of the Sacrifice was taken away, the blessed Martyrs, after, in the Revolution by the Prince of Orange, he with others, most part of them, left the Truth, and Testimony, some to the Army, and some to their Merchandize and Farming, and joined with the Indulged, and became fearful Examples of Apostacy, in gross Practices and Conversation; yet I do not say, they all did so, for some returned to the Truth, {339} however, he lurketh for a Time, like a Fox in a Hole. As long as he had a Pack to Pin, we were not troubled with him, but when his Means went from him, he became a vagrant Person, without a Calling, and wandered through the Country, gathering old Stories; but, in his Preface to Mr. Peden’s Life and Death, I cannot say, but the Turncoat cants there in Admiration. Being conversant with the blessed Martyrs, he got a System of those Truths in his Brain, formerly contended for, which he now publishes, to set off his Lies. In that Preface, he speaks most falsely of two Papers, one called the grand Jugler detected, and the other the Manifesto, calling them Enthusiasm. The Author of the first of these, went to his House, and desired Converse with him upon the Head, and told him, that he had two Things to say unto him, after which, he would ask two Questions at him. First. That having seen that Preface of that Book, he said, it were desirable, that Truth came forth its alone to the World, for it did much weaken a Testimony, when it was mixed with Lies, for it doth not well, that out of the same Mouth proceeded Blessing and Cursing. The Second was, that it was best, when any person would say any Thing against a Book, that they would first consult the Author, when he can be got, because a Man is always allowed, to be the Interpreter of his own Words. He answered, that I had not done so my self, for I charged Mr. Hog with what his brother was guilty of. The other answered, that was no Matter, since he was more guilty than his Brother, or any Man in his Generation, for he had written more against the Truth, than any, in his three Missives, printed 1717. He said, he did no approve of that. Then he was asked the two Questions, first, what he understood by Enthusiasm. 2dly, Wherein that Book was guilty of it. To which {340} he could give no Answer, but that he considered them complexly, till he was told, that the only Authors, that gives Account of that, was Slieden’s Commentary on the Affairs of Germany, in the Emperor Charles the V’s Time, and Ross his Survey of all the Religions of the World. Then he pretended, it was these only he consulted. I have been particular in this, to let you know, that he is a most impudent Person, and that he affirms, and he knows not what; however, I thought, he would not have had the Forehead, to said more upon that Head, yet he has shewn himself a most subtle Elymas, that will not cease to pervert the right Ways of God. He also in that Preface, insults insolently over the many Parties that are among the Dissenters, but he speaks falsely, for there are not so many Parties as he says, unless he count those who join with no Body, but live like Lepers put apart for Uncleanness; but suppose it were so, it doth not at all weaken their Testimony, since they all as one Man agree in the Matter, tho’ they differ in the Manner, and Form, and Management; and it shews, they are a Set of honest Persons, and will not connive at any Thing, that they think evil in one another, and that they are not for making a Party, and not like his juggling Knaves. Jurants and Non-Jurants, connive at one anothers Knavery, and so add the Heap together; and although we have many other Evidences, yet that is sufficient, their high Mocking of God at the Sacraments, which he gives Account of, and, as I am informed, he sat still at the Table, when some more honest People rose, and gave Testimony against such Mocking of God, such a Practice had high Aggravations, to disturb and discompose the People's Mind, when they should be waiting for the Operation of the Holy Spirit, to apply the Virtues of the Precious Blood of Christ, {341} shewed forth unto them. I shall also shew my Opinion of that Paper, called the Manifesto, that is every where spoken against, which, if People would rightly consider, and charitably construct, there is no such Occasion, for we are to consider, all Things of that Kind must be done by some Authority or other; now, there is no more Way of the Lord’s calling to such Things, but two, extraordinary, and ordinary; the first is not pretended to, the last they must have. I say, a charitable Construction of Things, will let it be seen, that there is no Cause for such harsh Consequences as have been drawn, for ’tis observable that all the Servants of the Lord have not done Things after one and the same Manner, and yet all approven of God, so that I still hold, that the Lord looks more to Matter, than Form. Mr. Renwick’s Way is more modest, but this [of the Manifesto] more heroick and valiant. But now, to return to our Author, whom we have not yet done with, as I said, I thought, the subtle Servant of the Devil, would have ceased any more to pervert the right Ways of the Lord, but it seems, nothing will satisfy fallen Lucifer, but draw all the Stars of the Heaven after him, for he hath gathered some more of the Reliques of the Martyrs, and in another Book published the same year, where he makes it his business to prove, they have no Successor; whether he be sensible of it, or not, I shall not say, but his Practice, and the Devil’s Design is one, which is, that Cause was of Men, and therefore came to nought, but both will be found Liars; for ’tis a Wonder, that any Person could affirm Falsehood with such Impudence, for the contrary of that is so manifest, that there is a certain Emulation, as it were, among them, who shall stick closest to Mr. Renwick’s Testimony, especially Mr. Mackmillan’s People, all their Papers and Testimonies follow him in a close Line, and {342} none of them, as to the Matter, as I have said, differ, altho’ ’tis true, as that blessed Martyr was obliged to do some Things, that none that went before him did, so his Followers have in their Circumstances, been obliged to do something that he did not, being not so circumstantiate. He also says, he wonders, if such would avouch the Truth, as he and others did, if they had the same Hazard. Vain Fool that he is, albeit others will not so vainly boast of their Suffering, the Lord hath helped some to avouch the Truth in the Enemies' Face, when nothing appeared but present Death, altho’ it pleased the Lord otherways to dispose, they were helped to resist unto Blood, striving against Sin, more than ever he did, but he is, may be, like those, that would have wisht them hanged, that they might have got a Confirmation, and so, if he had come down from the Cross, they would have believed. He also says, to confirm him in his ill Opinion, he went one Day to hear A. H., &c. Now, his insulting Disdain, and mocking Ridicule in this, we must refer him to that God, who hath called, and by his holy Spirit hath helped and assisted such. He hath need to consider, how near he goes to the Sin against the holy Ghost, in saying, they are led by the Spirit of the Quakers, and that vile Person John Gibb. I have many Time been struck in Horror upon what fearful Evidence I have beheld of that in our Day, with these enlightened Apostates, but he is a most Impudent Person, to pretend to know what passed that Day, for the most Part of the whole Time, he had a most unseemly and indecent Carriage, by Sotting and Sleeping, like one intoxicate with drink, till those that came with him, were ashamed of him, and the Report going of him, of his being drunk at Times, gives the more Ground to suspect, however, what a nonsensical Fool is he, to babble against {343} such, without so much as ever taking Notice of what they have said in Vindication thereof;

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[See Warning in Introduction Above.]

but suppose, there have been sufficient said upon these Heads, never yet answered by any, yet I will here repeat the Testimony of one of the Ministers of this present established Church, which, I am sure, being upon this Head, may be regarded, in a Book published this Year, called The People’s Right to call their Pastors, page 15. These are his very Words, Indeed in Cases of Necessity, as in case there be no Ministers to ordain, or, in case of a total Corruption in the Ministry, then, as our Divines assert against Romanists, a Christian religious faithful People, may prove and set apart a Man to the Work of the Ministry, Rutherford says, in Cases of Necessity, Election by the People, may stand for Ordination, where there be no Pastors at all, Ordination of Pastors, is not of that absolute Necessity, but in the Exigence of Necessity, the Election of the People, and some other Thing, may supply the want of it, and cites another Author to the same Purpose, called, A Vindication of the English Presbyterians, printed 1680, in a total Corruption of the Ministry, for want of Ministers, they believe, that a faithful People may prove, and set apart Persons to the Ministry, that no Ordinance of God may be lost, that he hath given to his Church; for it seems, he cannot hide his Prejudice, but he says, to confirm him of his ill Opinion, he went, who could expect, that such a prejudged Person, could give a faithful Account of any Matter. He also falls upon Mr. Adamson, and he will not suffer the dead Body of that faithful Witness, according to his Light, to lie in his Grave, for he says, upon the former Design, he went to hear him, and so, what his profane Mockery is, and false Representation of that blessed Man, now at Rest, he must answer for, for ’tis well {344} known, that he was both a Scholar, and well-qualified, and in his Writings, hath given good Testimony of a most excellent Gift, to disclose the Naughtiness of the Ministers, and their Perjury, and Apostacy, as Erasmus said of Luther, he committed two unpardonable Faults, He touched the Pope’s Crown, and Monk’s Belly, that is, he disclosed the Pride and Covetousness, Covenant-breaking, and Perjury of the Ministers. But that ye may know in this Matter, I do not speak without good Authority, about two Years before he died, I had Occasion to be particularly acquaint with him [Mr. Adamson]. My first Converse with him, was to this Purpose, that when the Lord raised up Witnesses, the present Generation followed always the preceding, which might be confirmed from many Places of Scripture. Such as Abraham following Noah, and in stead of being darker than those that went before them, they were more clear, for Abraham got Circumcision added, a Seal of the Covenant more clear than Noah, and so Moses got the Passover more than Abraham, &c. From all the Periods of the Church, both of the Old Testament and the New, and in our Father’s Day, the Reformation, 1648, exceeded that in King James the VI’s Time, and then made close Application. His owning King George, was contrary to those of 1648, that would not own Charles II. till he took the Covenant. He answered, That he had not will to be rash in disowning them, as long as they did not persecute, but he had just now written to the Sheriff, if he continued to persecute, he would be necessitate to disown them altogether, and it would be, that once in a Quarter of a Year, that he would pray for King George, and he did not pray as others did, his Prayer was, that the Lord would make him what he should be, or take him away, and give them a better. Some Months {345} after this, when I had Occasion to see him again, his Wife just before him, said, My Husband hath never prayed for King George, since he met with you, and he was most willing to forbear all Things in Controversy, till the Lord would give him Light; as for his Letter to the Magistrates of Perth, that he speaks of, the honest Man was provoked with such ignorant Blockheads, that could not speak Sense, nor understand Sense, I have thought indeed of him, as Mr. Rutherford said of Samson, who was a rackle-handed Saint, so Mr. Adamson was a rackle-tongu’d Saint. I could have wished, that he had studied some more Moderation, but that will never overthrow his Testimony. ’Tis well known, some of the most eminent Servants of God, have been subject to like Passions as other Men; yet how honourably doth the Holy Ghost make mention of them, in the 11th [chapter] of the [Epistle to the] Hebrews, such as Samson and Jephthah; he [Patrick Walker] doth not miss Mr. Mackmillan either, and, according to his own impudent Way, insults over his Weakness, tho’ acknowledged. O might not the vile Hypocrite minded first to pull the Beam out of his own Eye, ere he had been so severe to his Neighbour? There is a thousand times more in his Skirts, and those his Confederates, that he connives at. I am not particularly acquaint with Mr. Mackmillan, and his Circumstances, but sure I am, his [Patrick Walker’s] Testimony [about John Mackmillan] is not to be regarded upon any Head. I wonder our bantering Author forgot Mr. Flint, one of the Ministers of Edinburgh, he is as guilty as any of us, for he preached without Ordination, but that is an old Story, it will not sell so well, an old doating Balaam will not get his Wages for that. He also most falsely represents, as if Mr. Adamson had made a Purchase among the poor People, which is a great Falsehood, for the worthy Man was reduced to labour with his Hands, {346} like an Apostle indeed, for Bread to his Family, which I was a Witness to, and ’tis well known, if he had been a Mind for that, he had a fair Venture for his Stipend, as well as others.

He [Patrick Walker] also, to render the Dissenters ridiculous, and represent them ignorant and inconsiderate Persons, says, they hold every Difference in Judgment, a sufficient Cause of Separation; but I know the contrary, and that there is, that never thought the difference between Mr. Renwick’s Manner, and the other, a Cause of Separation, and that it had been better, to have called the Manifesto the Standard of the states of Scotland, and as I have said, to construct charitably, for a malicious Person could draw as harsh Constructions from the other Way; but oh, that the Lord would put a stop to the Spirit of Prejudice that is raging, for which I pray, and the rest,

Your Soul’s Well-wisher,

A. H. (ANDREW HARLEY.)


POSTSCRIPT.

Providence having brought this Letter to my Hand, I thought fit to publish it, that it might take the Stink of the dead Flies away, that he [Patrick Walker] hath mixed so much Truth with, and let no Body think, that all that might be said on that Head, is said, for those who best know these Circumstances, can make manifest the terrible Lies that he hath said, where he says that the Pretender’s Interest was in the Dissenters Declaration, neither need any be surprised, to see some so zealous for old Truth, and yet malicious Enemies to the Lord’s appearing in the present {347} Time, for the Pharisees, and the Church of the Jews, ’tis known, where Christ’s greatest Enemies, however zealous they were for Moses Law, and the scorching Light that rises from the present Testimonies, torments his guilty Conscience, and this makes him rage like the Devil and the Pharisees.

Printed in the Year MDCCXXVII.