"A Fountain of Gardens: Volume II"
"A Fountain of Gardens: Volume II: Part II
March the 11th. 1677.
In my first Sleep, in the Night time, many magical Workings and Ideas were presented to me. As first, a Figure of a Woman, with a Crown upon her Head, who seemed to me to be but of a small Stature, but her Visage was bright as the Sun, and clear as the Moon, with a White loose Garment girt about her with a seeming White Silken Girdle, who came near to me, saying, Behold and see, what ye may arrive to be in me? And so passed away.
Then after a while, there was a Child all Lovely and Fair put into my Arms; it was all naked, of a smooth shining Skin; I could not see who it was that disposed it to me, but it was unexpectedly let down into my Arms. I thought it to be very Weighty, though but little; so passing to go away with it, it suddainly slipped through my Arms unto the Ground, at which I gave a great Screek, and with great Fear and Concern, took it up again without much Damage.
March the 12th. 1677.
The Interpretation of the First Vision.
Concerning this Vision, the Thoughts of my Head were, for the space of time, much troubled, till the revealer of Secrets did expound to me the meaning hereof. As to the first, which was the Woman with the Crown upon her Head. This was declared to be the Virgin-Bride of the Lamb, who came to shew her self made fully Ready, all bright and Fair, as the Queen and Princess of Heaven. Who hath her place at the Right-hand of the Immanuel; for so much as this Woman is the Glory of the God-Man, who out of this masculine Nature is taken, according to the Figure of the first Paradisiacal Man, who brought forth that Eve, that was the Mother of all that lived in the mixed Property of Good and Evil. All of which Off-spring the present visible World doth consist of, which to this Day is under the denomination of the fallen Creation: which hath been upon Restoring ever since the Relapse, but not yet Restored. What then has made it stick so long? Where is that Woman whose Seed must bruise the Serpentís Head? Is she not yet made manifest? Yes sure, she hath been known as to the first Figure hereof, to whom it was said, That this Eve, or first Woman should bring forth her Seed in Sorrow. It hath been also generally concluded, That out of this earthly Eve that Royal Seed should come, by which the Serpent in Nature should be destroyed, which was so suddainly introduced both into Adam and Eve. True it is that the genealogy did so run from them, to the Birth of Christ after the Flesh, but yet not to be reckoned for Eves Seed: though God said to the Serpent, that he would put Enmity betwixt his Seed, and the Womans. But how is that to be understood? Not in the Line of natural Generation. Neither was it said that from such a Woman, who lies under the Curse of Sin and Sorrow, that this blessed Birth should spring therefrom. Though in Truth and Substance, a mighty and wonderful Birth was made manifest, wherein a deeper Mystery hath been couched than to past Time, and past Generations hath been Revealed. But now the Hand of Love begins to move, and the Covering is turning away off from such, who are turned in to know the Treasure of eternal Wisdom. The Spirit of Truth is verily at hand to drive and guide the pure Mind jointly with it self, into the Ocean-Mystery, which is God himself in his abstracted Deity, where-into separated Spirits may very deeply dive, when they are departed from their Earthly Senses. This deep thing, which is upon revealing, I found like a boiling Pot of Oyntment, so sweetly flowing into my Intellectual part. Upon which my Mind as all in a flaming Light was enlightened to see, what under the Mantle did lie. Who according to eternal Counsel, was hereunto fore-ordained, typically to be brought forth in the Line of Natural Virginity, even a Man of Sorrows, and acquainted with Griefs, and subjected to Sufferings, hiding and covering by a Terrestrial Form, that sparkling Star of the Deity: Which also would have been obscured, if he had not again risen from the Dead. Which gave the Church a mighty Remove in that day from shadows, into that which was more Substantial, through the giving of the Unction. Which hath from that Age striven mightily, but the Man of sin still hath been too strong: witness those Complaints, to the very breaking Hour of Mortality, in them that are highest in the Birth-Ministration of Jesus, as working through human Properties. But then an Objection must rise herefrom. If all this be too short, what more is there yet to come? Things now have long stood at a stay, what may we from the mighty God and everlasting Father more yet expect? that so the Temple Body of Jesus, may not still lie unperfected. Well, what more forceable can there be? than Christ in the Flesh, and Christ in the Spirit? Ans. To this there is an Answer, by the All-searching Spirit prepared, there is yet a Virgin Woman to be revealed out from the Heavens, whereof Mary that brought forth Christ according to the Flesh, was but a Type. For it was neither Eve, nor she to whom the Promise was made, concerning that Birth, which should bruise the Serpentís seven headed Power. There must be another Genealogy found out, from whence the Sepent-treader must also come. Look and see, and you shall find hereof is recorded, Rev.12. To which place, I was by that Holy Ghostly Seer referred, as to a Foundation for this more Excelling Ministration. John seeing this in Vision so long since, and nothing hereof yet produced, let not that seem so marvellous in your Eyes, for Times decreed are in the Spirit, as known to God, in what Age in the World this Blessing will be most seasonably brought forth. Conclude ye may by Wisdomís Star, that hath appeared in your Heavens, that out-thence ( if kept pure and clear) this great Wonder may follow, according as ye did see in the late Idea. But, ah my Lord, how is this to be understood? sure this Woman is not to be manifested in any one Particular, who is subsisting in a Corporeal Substance. For she will come all arrayed in a Body Saphire-like, and not in the garb of the Mortal Creature, with the Globe of this World under here Feet. Therefore this Query meets with this, Who living in this Principle, may expect such a Ray of Glory for to become a Covering? And this was Answered, Wherefore dost thou think, that it was cryed up for a Wonder, if it was not upon some extraordinary change, who though thus transformed into such brightness of excellency, yet she is called a Woman: But the pure Heavenly Glory altogether covereth the Creaturely Being. The sparkling Deity that was hid within, becomes the great and high amazement, a flaming Garment. This also will be obvious to the right discerning Eye in this present Sphere, from whence will arise the admiration? and great questioning there will be, from whence this Woman did proceed? If any hereof shall make a doubt, how it can ever be on Earth? for Virgin Wisdom to draw over her Virgin Vail of Purity in some one or other, so as expressly to Personate her. Tell them from the Alpha and Omega, such a spotless Lilly will sprout out of the Immaculate Body, and shall be watered from the Heavens so fair and lovely that she will be elected for the Lambís Bride and Mate, who raised is to the high Eagle state, who may have Power to mount into the heavenly Place, and again be sent therefrom, for such purposes and intents as here are premised. She being big with such a travelling Seed, as may break the Serpentís Head in dethroning him, who hath got into the Heavenly Place. Where now expect, he will be cast out, as strong travelling Powers do take hold upon this Woman. These Pangs and Sorrows will differ much, from those that were in Eveís Day; whose Sorrows greatly multiplied hereby, through a natural, vile, sinful Body: no hope whereof there is that ever it shall be destroyed, till this Birth of Births doth grow to ripeness in any such one. Who in Wisdomís Virgin likeness shall be bred up to the Wonder in Heavenly Places, from whence all Wonders shall go forth. For who, but this Man-child shall be the Ruler of Nations in all Soveraignity, no more under the Power of any Herod, or Pontius Pilate, to be arraigned unto Death? For he is immediately caught up unto God and his Throne, and from thence is to descend again; to bring up the Remnant of the Virgin-Seed, against whom the Dragon still makes War. But to each one, who belongs to this his Kingdom of Priests, they shall be mightily born up upon his strong Eagle-Body, so as all the Dragonís Floods shall be too short to reach this high Eagle-Nest, which is prepared in the Heavenly Place. Upon this Rock of Strength, I, saith the Amen, will build my Virgin Church, who shall know no more any thing of the Number of the Beast, but shall be totally acquitted from Men of the earthly quality. Therefore I give this Word to you in particular, that ye may know, there is somewhat of Grace to you peculiarly by this Prophecy, which is upon renewing. Therefore consider hereof, and ponder it deeply: for to the pure chaste Virgin mind, much of this may happen suddenly. You daily from the Unction have received much in order hereunto; which Golden Talent I do expect should be improved, that so ye may further be trusted with more considerable Dignities and Powers, tending to Wisdomís Star sparkling Crown, which to none is given, till they be quite driven out of the Worldly Principle. If now then ye can ascend with all your Might to this Tree of Life, you may find quick Removes to him, who is that Ghostly overshadowing Power, who can impregnate with this last all-saving Birth. O, saith the Spirit, that hereunto ye could give your selves without further debate, to the glorified Person of your Jesus; that the issue might be, to wit, a glorious Son of Might, brought forth to all Wonderment.
March the 13th. 1677.
Now as concerning the latter Vision, whereof I gave a Narrative, according as I had magically seen it. The Interpretation whereof was after this manner given to me, this is the Child that is born from the heavenly Virgin Womb, after all those spiritual and deep Travels. Moreover it was said to me, Dost thou not remember, that thou didst ask some Years since a Son of God with great earnestness, and engagedst to dedicate him to be a Temple Priest and Prophet, if herein thou mightest be answered. Though thy Petition was not granted in that way, as to have a Son by earthly Generation, but much better it shall be, if thou shalt see the travel of thy Soul and Spirit in the Birth of a pure Nazarite, given unto thee from the Lord. Which is a thousand degrees beyond what once thou were greatly sollicitous after, to wit, a fleshly Birth. Since which time, much hath been wrought for thee, Wisdom hath so highly favoured thee, as to cast thee into her Virgin Mould, or else no way capable to embrace such a Man-child, who shall have Power to do great and mighty things on the Earth, and to hold up the four Winds, an Elias Spirit, to shut and open the Heavens. Such a one God will need upon the Earth to have, but none could yet arrive to this mighty high and glorified state, the mortal Spirit hitherto so hindered, and the Dragon hath raised great Seas of partition, and hath brought down such with his twisting Tail, as were ascending for Heaven; for out of Mount Sionís Heaven, Wisdomís deputed Virgin Woman is to descend with all accomplished Power, and Perfection of Holiness. Then what manner of Child, thinkest thou this must be, Who is begotten by the Eternal Word of Truth, and is daily to be brought up a Nazarite, by the pure honey Dews, and Milk from the Virgin Breast, that so his strength may hereby daily grow? Happy thou, and blessed wilt be called, if such a spotless Nazarite Lilly thou shalt bring out of thy Spiritual Womb. At which I tell thee, who am the All-Seer, the Serpent doth heave mightily against it: there is daily plotting to make hereof an abortive; nay, when thou hast him in thy Arms, it may slip away. Which for Caution was shewn, that thou mightest take hereof sure hold, because this Holy Birth is designed to be in that Person, to whom the Serpent hath had long Indignation, but through great heed, and daily watching and care, he may keep out from this last prepared hurtful Snare. Who, then shall indeed bear the Banner of Victory over all his, and thy home-bred Enemies. Who if obedient to his Eternal Virgin-Mother in all things, which shall proceed from the Law of her Mouth, may then be the Man of Wonder indeed. But before-hand, take thou charge on his behalf, lest he suffer any Dalilah, to come near his Head with a Razor, where only his strength doth lie: if so, all will be undone; as ye did see in the case of Sampson. This holy spiritual Off-spring must be for the Conversation of Masculine Virgins, who are of his own rank and sort. For whatever shall from this low contrary Sphere, interfere with this holy Nazarite, the Marks and Spots thereof will be obvious upon that smooth shining Skin to his disgrace. Therefore let him abide in that Milk-white Nature answerable to his Birth, still keeping washing with the Water of Life, that so Wisdom may have great joy and delight in her first-born in the Earth. Seven ecchoing Voices I did hear in me to declare, who it was should Personate this Nazarite Birth. If he could clear himself from all clogs and weights, then said Wisdom, who but he my first Born Heir shall be? This Word of Truth do thou give him for Meat to eat, no other but what doth proceed from the pure Unction, in his Heavenly Nature in him; as he can digest it, and as Wisdomís Spring Well flowing thence continually in him.
This Person noted so often by me, did not arrive to this Perfect Degree, so as Wisdomís First-born to be, though he reached far: yet not able was he, while in this principle he lived, the Crown-Number to obtain; the Dragon and the Beast hard War against him did make, in conjunction with the Elements, that did his outward mortal Life away take; which did make out the Vision of the Child falling out of the Authorís Arms. But the same Spirit is to revive in another, and so to be taken up again; which shall assuredly make good this Visional Prophecy in its Time.
March the 14th. 1677.
In this juncture of time, upon these weighty Prophecies frequently opening upon me, they indeed took up my whole Mind in Spiritual Debate for my self and that Nazarite whom the Prophecy did still eye, for whom I was made to be concerned: because he was to be a joint Pillar to bear up, and to declare this new Virgin Ministration; which I did see would be mightily envied, contradicted and warred against, so soon as it should be brought to Light. Nay while but unto us revealing, the Serpent doth work, in many Wiles here against us: of which still we have Warnings by Vision and In-speakings. As after Break of Day, this by Presentation was shewn to me, as upon the twink of an Eye, I did espy a young Dragon out of a Hole of the Earth, with Head, Wings and Tail, so speckled with black Venomous Spots, as I could not bear to look upon it, and while I was considering what should be done to destroy this Venoumous Beast; immediately from on high, a young sprightly Eagle down did fly upon the Back hereof, with such undauntedness, as it had no power to resist the Eagles arrest. Who did mightily tear with her Bill the Dragonís back and tail. What further Victory she had, I did not see, the Vision hereof shutting up. But this Word of Comfort was present with me, saying, See, see after this manner ye will be relieved by your own Eagle-Spirit; for nothing is like to the courage and strength of an Eagle. Therefore when at any time this polluted Beast shall face to daunt and affright you, gather up your Eagle-Might, and be revenged in the first place upon that Tail, wherein doth lie to you the greatest danger, for there is both Sting, Venom, and Poyson, and also subtle attracting Insinuation. These are very hurtful, because not discerned; therefore not feared or mistrusted. As, if his Head was set forward against you, then ye could not but see his Mouth standing always wide open, to swallow up what, and whoever doth but look within the Circle of his Kingdom. Of which ye have been aware, and therefore have been kept, by virtue of an unknown Angelical Guard, from his Mouths foaming Rage. Which this subtle Serpent knoweth well, and therefore hath turned his Tail against you through a young one. Who if possible might overcome your Virgin Spirits, and cause you to turn down, and fall in with the Dragon and Beast again, after all chaste separating Nazarite Vows, and ascending Mights, by which like Eagles, ye fly to the Munition of Rocks. Who with his Scorpion Tail will then surely circumvent you, whose sting and power lieth there to hurt by Commission from the King of the Bottomless Pit. Therefore your onset make, like a right brood Eagle from your Tree of Life, (your Eagle-Eye will soon espy all Scorpion Spirits, with their twisting Tails) and then rend and tear with the Golden Bill of that strong Eagle-Spirit, as Sampson did the Lyon, which he met with in the Way. So Courage take to rend away the very Sting in the Tail, then ye shall proceed further unto the Head-Power, till bruised under your Feet. Of which this will be the assured Sign.
March the 18th. 1677.
This Morning this Word came to me, Draw into thy Center-deep, and see what lies there so precious, so weighty, and worthy to be dispersed forth; that so thy Heavens within may be with that perfuming Saphire-Stone, yet through-out more brightly inflamed: because the Virgin out there will first appear, that must wear the Crown of Twelve Stars. Take present care of the Heavens of your Mind, and of that pure Unction-Oyl extracted out from that sweet Composition Matter, that is not known by Name. The rich Quality thereof is such, as no Language here found can express: but through contaction with it, you will know the high Nature and Operation of it. For from this unknown thing, will spring the First-born Israelite, where nothing of Guile shall ever be found. Then was a new Charge for my self and the Dr. that we should draw apart from all impertinent Fellowships; because called to act forth a Superiour part, as those who are designed to wait for the Triune Glory to fill our whole Temple Minds, who will in our Heavenly Conversation be, if nothing throngs in from this World. For an instance hereof, that Scripture was brought to me, of the two Disciples, when walking apart, and only talking of Jesus, their expectation of Restoration, how immediately was he with them, and expounded all things to them: which was sealed with an inspiring Flame, which gave Witness who made the Triune there: who will still be with us, as he is the Subject of our Discourse.
March the 19th. 1677.
I found my Spirit in a Disgust still against Eveís Birth, as it hung upon the Heavenly and Superiour part, which I did feel to burthen it, though the Virgin Nature did daily flow and spring through the Center of Vision and Revelation. Whereby heaviness was upon my Intellectual Spirit, so as I was made to pour out my Complaint in secret to my Lord Jesus. Upon which after some Repose in the Night, there was the similitude of a Man standing before me, leaning under a Tree, with a working Tool in his Hand, as one worn out with Labour, with a Dew of Sweat upon his Face; he seemed to be so sick and tired, and he entreated I would bear him away from that place; whereupon I took him up, and carried him upon my Back, but I could not long bear this ponderous Person, but must throw him off, else I perceived we must fall down together. Whereupon it was said, Carry him back to his own place, who did come from the Earth, and thereto he must return, for to spend out his Life, and dye, that thou thereby mayst be fully discharged. Which idea had a considerable Speaking in it, as it did plainly allude to the fallen Adamical state, the meaning of which was clearly opened by the Spirit, who said, What hast thou here seen, but the old Life Adam, who was made out of the Dust and inferiour part of the Earth, who is turned out from the Angelical Shape, where he might have very near address to God, his Maker. But he did suck in that, from that wretched Tree, which hath made him so deplorable a Figure, as thou didst see. So as he is only meet to spend his days in toil and labour upon that Ground which is cursed for his sake, so as nothing it will or can bring forth without Sweat of the Face. Oh ye, who are sufficiently sensible of this working, toiling Day; into which all are fallen, but can bear the Burthen as if it were indeed a Paradisiacal Sphere, so lightly hath the whole Creation yet cared for its relapsed state: How choice and few are those, that do seek herefrom to be released, being of that Perswasion, that the Earthly with the Heavenly must unseparably grow together as Twins? Which is not so determined by the great God and Creator, but he doth still expect, that through the many depressions both in Spirit and Body, some one or other, ere this long-run out time, would be so weary of the Body of toil, sorrow and Sin, as to violate, upon the Love, Pity, and Power of God the Father; who cannot resist to send forth saving Succour to ransom such, as still do fill his Ears with Cries and Groans for Redemption, out of that which is the external Original matter of all and every kind of thraldom. Hearken now, and hear the Glad-tydings, which is sent from your Father to you, who hath taken notice of your travelling Sorrows, while yoked with that Man, upon whom Sentence is past, that he might live by care and labour, yet to you I say, he shall not always, and for ever be your clog. There is a Birth of Strength upon the rising, that will easily throw off this depressing Weight. Yet a little while, and the Iron-rod shall rule the Man of Sin, so as to divide him from thee. Many ways have been tryed to make him dye, but all have been too short, for he hath been a Warriour from his Original Sin-Conception, and will keep the Field of this out-birth, as he hath done from Adamís Day. What hopes then say you? that out of us he shall be thrown out, for here I did object in Love, Fear, and Faith, that many worthy Ones had striven hard to conquer by Death, some of whom did go very far, but scarce in any did this Death-Arrow so hit, as to obliterate Sin altogether in its Root. Then was it replyed, it is sufficient, that one was perfect and just without Sin in a human Figure; then was that Scripture spoken in me, Rom. 5.19. As by one mans disobedience, so by the obedience of one, many shall be made righteous. The Words were thus opened by the Spirit, who said, God revealed to Paul in his Day, that nothing less was designed, than a full and clear Aquitment from that first Man, which did so naturally work in toyl and labour, bringing only forth Fruit unto Death. And who but that Man, called the Branch, shall answer to that defectiveness, in abolishing the very Sperm of Sin: that as nothing thereof could be found in himself, so likewise in those, who are elected for to be in joynt Heir-ship in the Kingdom of Mount Sion with him. Whereunto he translates none, till the old Adamical Life is laid in an everlasting Sleep of Death, no more to awake for Contempt and Shame. As often now it doth, which hath stopped the New Jerusalem from descending down, because none hath been perfect & ready to meet this heavenly City. Therefore saith the most Holy and True, another manner of Church must be gathered from among Men, who out of the Womb of that first Morning Star, that is now upon breaking out, a Star-like Off-spring is to proceed, that shall go forth with the iron Rod of Power, and dash in pieces every one of the Dragons Heads, till this Church be born upon the Earth. Who all are of Angelical Natures, till then expect no Power over the Dragons and Beasts to reign. To you who Numbered are to bear the Lambs Trophies, stand to your Virgin Call; fly not from her innocent White Colours, whatever shall be here said against her. If ye shall be the first born Star, who shall shine upon Wisdoms Crown; the Loves eternal Testimony for this end hath opened the clear Body of the Heavens, that ye might understand what may be looked for in this Age. Therefore do you stand as mighty and immoveable Pillars for the Lamb and the Brides Church, and great Indignation have against those that would it down decry. Fear not those pushing Horns, that war here against her, she will make the glittering Sword of Power to be your defence against all your Enemies. Be not troubled at the fewness of your Number: for out of one or two that shall be perfect in their Generation, a strange Generation may proceed, who all mighty Warriours shall be for God and the Lamb, to follow him in trampling down all earthly Powers. Keep but up to your Leaders, and ye need to fear no ill, for invisible Seraphims shall still pitch a mighty Pavilion round about you.
March the 20th. 1677.
Thus ended this Revelation from the Vision I had seen: which left a sweet perfumed Sense of Love, Peace, and Joy to feed upon.
Another Idea was presented to me from the History of Ahashuerus and Vashti his first espoused Queen. Who by her act of Disobedience to her Royal Consort was banished from his Throne. This Word with great Power did through me sound; A Virgin Queen among the Captives shall be found, that shall be crowníd in the room of Vashti. Then saw I one in the similitude of a Woman cloathed with Scarlet, which was said, This is one of Wisdomís Household, who but she for the King of the New Jerusalem¸ whose Garment is of an unstainable Dye? From hence the Spirit made use of the whole literal Discourse of Ahashuerus, Vashti, and Esther. The most high Majesty hereby Figuring out himself, having created and made for the Excellency and Glory of his Kingdom, according to the state of so wise and infinite a Being. That so he might take Pleasure in all the Glory and Riches of his Kingdom, or Creation, being all made perfect and good, and high Princely Angels and Powers for Attendance. As also Creating one more Noble Image as Male and Female, who was in Election to be advanced to very high Dignity, no ways inferiour to any Princely Spirit in the Angelical Figure. But now the Sovereignty of the most High resolved to try this his new formed Creature with a Law of Restriction, as from the Lord their Maker and Husband, who might well expect a ready and punctual Obedience. Who Vashti-like was disobedient to the great Kingís Command, and so thereby was turned into an earthly Eve, and immediately banished out from the high Throne Presence. For else it would have been an ill Precedent, if God should not thus have done, the heavenly Hierarchy might have questioned Godís immutability, and thereby have taken advantage to deviate from those known Angelical Laws, which the great Creator had to them perfixed. Thus much was opened of this Original Eve, from whence the contradicting and slighting Vashti Spirit doth proceed. The true Virgins Life, which the first formed Man was once in, is now as to him, and all of his Posterity, carried away as a Captive, and sold for nought. For this Virgin Nature, was wholly taken away upon this act of Disobedience. Who though thus made to fly from the earthly Man, yet she is in safe and sure Custody, to bring her forth again in the most needful and seasonable time; which will be, when you see the Pride, and stately Insolency of Vashtiís Spirit generally grown so high in the World for contempt, and neglect of those Superiour, and Paradisiacal laws, which by God the Creator, were upon all enjoyned. But now being by all universally forfeited, What is decreed henceforth to be done? Why, Vashti, who hath wrought all this Evil, and doth work still in every one, must depart from the Crown Dignity, and no more appear near the Throne of the Majesty of Holiness, but evermore be counted as dead to the eternal Royalty. Then heard I this Voice sound, saying, Come, come, a Virgin Mate must be found for the King; search and see, she must be found among the Children of the Captivity, one more excelling for Beauty, Amiableness, Wisdom, and Meekness, Humility, Love, and Patience, than any other; by which Endowments, the true Virgin Queen, that is allotted to be in Vashtiís room, shall be known. For such an one is in the Eye of the great and mighty Ahashuerus, for to find Favour and Kindness. Then was it further shewed to me, that such a one, so excellently qualified in all perfection of Holiness, is to be admitted into the Bosom of the most Holy. that she would have hereby great Opportunity to plead for the Liberty of the Captive Seed. This Wise Virgin I did now see in a Figure, that she, by Council with the upright Mordecai, did bring to pass great and mighty Deliverance, according to the literal similitude. Now then the true Mordecaiís Spirit, is that which was still in Unity with Esther: without whom she would do nothing. Whereby it is worthy to be observed, that where two Spirits are thus in Harmony, upon a high and spiritual Account, there is great Force and Strength united to a blessed Success: Both ways considered, as each one, having a Mordecai Councelling Spirit within themselves; or distinct, as in a Person without, both of which are of great service in the Work of the Lord. Some Rules were given to her, who is to succeed Vashti, that so she might gain Esteem,and Favour with the King. As first a Child-like Innocency, and humble Simplicity, and staid Sobriety, which may render her as a blushing Bride of Virginity, all pure and fair as the Lilly. Such a one will be most meet to represent and personate the eternal Virgin, that so the Crown of Queen-like Power might be set on her Head. Then she may have access upon more equal terms to this mighty potent King; for herein lieth the great Privilege, that upon any straits or distress as may happen, this worthy Esther knoweth whither to repair, having both the Heart and Ear of that mighty one, who hath dominion every where. She knowing her times, seasons, and Cause is Just, for which she makes her Application. Here also I was incited from this History, for to take notice of the state of this Ahashuerus who had a Court and Tendance for himself, and another for his Queen, with her Attendance. Even so the high and holy One, hath two most holy Courts, for Purity, and heavenly State. The one is the great Palace Shusan, which represents the Jerusalem State of Glory; the other is the Celestial All-springing Paradise, provided for the Virgin Queen, and her most honourable Women; where she, that principal One, in whom the King delighteth is often sent for to see. and to be honoured among that high Assembly. She at no time is Disobedient to her Lords Command, but rejoyceth to be admitted to every spiritual Feast: and then again by reciprocal Love invites also her Lord and King to banquet with her, of such Fruits, as she well knows will please him; so that there is no end of Loveís Commerce. This chaste and loyal Bride loveth not, if it might be permitted, to make one Meal, without her beloved King. She admitteth none into her secret Courts, but such grave Mordecaiís, and such as are Virgins like unto her self. The Haman once or twice intruded with the King, which doth allude to the invading Serpent Seed, of which the wise and prudent Esther with her Mordecai did foresee the Danger, and the subtle Plot for eternal Ruin; and therefore wisely grounded themselves, first in the Love, Favour, and good Will of their King. Even so do ye imitate the Examples of these worthy Ones: observe all things as in the History, so in the lively track of the Mystery. Let it be your grand Design to ingratiate your selves in this your Captive state, with the mighty Potences in heavenly Places: Act each one both these Parts. Oh Mordecai! if any thing of Treachery, or Dishonour thou knowest against thy Lord the King, be faithful to bring it before him, that when need is, it may be remembered; for hereby the Virgin Seed in time shall rise to promotion. Oh Esther! maintain that Love and Favour which thou hast obtained, hold fast what thou hast received of that Love Pledge, do thou prepare often in thy Paradisiacal Mind, what may please and have influence upon thy mighty Sovereign Lord. Be sure to maintain all intimacies, for verily the Day is not only coming, but now is, when both Mordecai and Esther shall have occasion to set a work, the utmost interest they have both for themselves, and for a scatteríd Seed, with the great King; to give sealing Power for Confirmation and Justification, in a wonderful way: As also Decrees to reverse and change, what seems so unalterable in the visible state of Things among the oppressed Captives. Here now somewhat of Wisdoms Book is opened, seek the right Eye Salve, that ye may plainly read these things, and make high and spiritual Use of them, that Esthers good Day may overtake you.
March the 22d. 1677.
In the Night, as I was waiting in my wonted solemn Retirement, what might further be administered. I was cast as into a magical Sleep, where I saw my self carried into a Wilderness; where I saw only pleasant, pastoral Walks and Trees, which much suited with my Mind and Inclination there to walk; where I found nothing to disturb my superiour Meditations. In which place I promised my self opportunity, as not willing that either my Name, or Place should be known to any, saving One. But while I was thus pleasured in my reserved state, I suddainly did see one, that was known to me, walking very strait and upright, with a Book reading in his Hand: He seemed to be as one, that would not look awry. But it was said presently, that this Person was a Spy: then presently two more did appear of the Female Sex, both which did make a kind of Assault upon me; but one of the Females was more fierce, and did give my outward Skin a prick, as with a sharp Needle. Upon which I called for Angelical aid to succour me, or else too hard they would be. Whereupon I was parted from them, and saw them in that place no more: A voice, saying, None here shall henceforth come, but such as can agree to walk with thee perfectly. And so the Vision broke up.
Some Days after I did further enquire into the more full meaning of this Vision, why such should so conspire against my solitary reserved Life: but especially that one, who was in my Eye of more value, because of a known Life of Truth, and Integrity? I found this written upon my Heart, Their Eyes must for a while be with-held; they will not you know, till ye can get the new Name engraven, as of precious Stones upon your Forehead. For it was secretly whispered to my Spirit, that in some there might be a refined and spiritual Emulation, as in others a more Gross and Sensual. Both of which I had councel, and caution, how to walk with; so as no occasion of stumbling might be given justly to the gainsaying Spirits: Whose pryings were to see how we would walk, while in the Wilderness state. Out of which we were not to come, till our beloved Lord should bring us forth, as in another form; wherein we might be known as those, who are to live in another Sphere, where neither the hissing Serpent, or biting Adder will adventure to appear in that High-way, where nothing which is unclean can pass. It is only for those, who have held out the Wilderness probation; waiting in Faith, Love, and Patience, till the jubilee Year. In which the Ransomed shall go forth, out of their solitary Place into the New Sharon: where the Glory and Excellency of their God, as a circling Saphire-bow will be for their Defence.
March the 23d. 1677.
This Word spake with great Majesty: Behold I come quickly, hold fast that which thou hast. Upon which I considered what that thing was, which was to be held so fast. This Word then opened it self in great Force and Consequence to me: for I was in great suspense among the many Gifts received, what most primarily should be taken care of, among those things which were intrusted with me. Still my Spirit was harping hereupon, waiting for a clear Resolve, which this Morning was given to me, by a distinct Word passing through me, saying; Hold fast that which is my Witness in thee, as the Gift of Revelation and Prophesy: Which bind fast by the Girdle of Faith, or else it may be wrested from thee, for thou art not freed from the Serpentís Conspiracy. Who by all subtlety would circumvent my anointed Prophets, by mixing and casting in, what is not of my Spirits pure intent: Watchful then now be, lest that high spirited Wine, which flows so readily from the eternal Vine should be either adulterated, or stopped in its flowing Source, Therefore from your holy Watcher take this following Rule, and thereby you shall be able to keep the Crown of anointing upon your Heads, in despite of the Serpentís Rage.
March the 24th. 1677.
To you then, to whom this worthy portion of Prophesie and Revelation is given, as what ye are to keep and hold fast, till your Lord shall come, it will be expedient to observe this Rule. Take this councel that Elisha gave the Prophetís Widow, that had out-run all her living. Furnish thy House, and stock it well with choice Vessels of all kind, that are fit for reception; washed and wrinsed with the scented Water of Life. Let no other Furniture be within the Mansion-house of the great Prophet, but set all in Order, ranck by ranck, and expel every other thing. Taking the Authority also to stop all of the nether sensual Springs; and a way is to be found out to cut off those Pipes, through which the muddy brackish Water of strong scented Reason issues out. For if at any time, while this pure Oyl is running, this should happen therewith to mingle, it would be like that Herb in the Pottage, which made the Sons of the Prophets, to cry there was Death in the Pot. Therefore obey this Councel, when thou hast brought in all those Vessels, that have been tried as Gold in the celestial Fire of Godís Love, Faithfulness and Truth; then use thy Skill to suspend, and stench the Bleeding of that old degenerated Vine. Which when your Obedience herein is readily fulfilled, then to you will be given that Precious, Blood Ruby-Stone, that will eternally put a stop thereto. But at present all Care and Diligence is charged upon you, that a restraint according to your present Ability may be put, to all those sprouting Essences, which are contrary to the Paradisiacal Nature.
Here is a break for several Days in the Original.
April the 8th. 1677.
THIS Word I was reminded of, as a Prophesie to be fulfilled in this last Age of Time: Rejoyce, O ye Souls, in what I am about to do; which is to create new Heavens in your old Earth; to change it into a spiritual Frame and Model, wherein the holy Ghost that I will send down, shall evermore abide and dwell: Then shall ye bear the Name of Immanuel. Now it is to be understood what the reason was why the holy Ghost could not transform the Soul before into its first Original Purity; which was because the new Heavens were not yet Framed: which do represent a Mind renewed, and a Heart purified. For that Scripture was opened to me, If Christ be risen in you, then hath Sin no Power over you, but its Body sinks and dies away. For till the Body of Sin be laid, there can be no assuming of a celestial Body, at least for duration. Then again the great Prince and Shepherd had another design to gather up holy, choice Spirits, that had lived in mortal Bodies, to come up after him, to make up the Mount Sion Church, in the invisible Heavenly Sphere. And those that have kept fast the Word of Truth in Patience, and have fought the good Fight of Faith; if that they dye in the Warfare, they shall lose nothing of what they have so far wrought; there is a reservation and a Place for such, to perfect what is lacking. For,
1. Christ himself did not go out of the Body into the highest mansion of Glory, but he first entered Paradise; So likewise those, whom the Father hath given to him, must whether in the Body or out of the Body, make their first remove thither, to be fully made meet, to be gathered up to the Fountain-head of all springing Wisdom and Glory. A known Number here is to make up the Flock for this upper Fold; whereof are the Patriarchs, Prophets, and Apostles, who are nominated to be Elders among that great Assembly; who are moved out of Paradise to sit in heavenly Places, with their head Prince and Mediatour. To which holy Place there are some holy and perfect Spirits in every Age added, as Saints breaking away from this Principle.
This now is a Dispensation of that Time mentioned, of a gathering in of heavenly Spirits to Christ; out of the reformed Paradise. But there is yet a fuller Time and Dispensation to come, that shall answer to the Jerusalem above, which is said to come down. Here is a Mount Sion Church to be gathered out from among all Churches of Men, by the preparing Ministry of an Elias Spirit, who is to make ready against the Lordís return from that solemnized Wedding with the present triumphant Church. Now what is meant by this Elias Spirit? But such a Spirit as hath Power to transform and translate at pleasure. This Elias is not an abstracted Ghost, but is in Conjunction with a flaming Body of Light. This was that, which the Apostles eyed much in their Days, and had the Revelation thereof; but it was reserved for the latter Ages. This pure abstracted ghostly Power did come upon them, and did great things through their own Bodies, but did not work to the height of a ghostly Body; for then Mortality would have been over Cloathed with Celestiality: Therefore it was reserved for a future Season. This Apple is not yet fallen upon any one, but is growing to the full golden Colour, to give a full Body and Spirit to them: For whosoever shall eat of this golden Apple, shall be transmuted into a Body as of fine Gold. And so who shall first partake hereof, the Elias Spirit will soon operate, to translate them from terrestrial Things. Then was this Question with me, But who of all Flesh living now shall this great Elias personate? Or ever come his Day to see? Many various Visions, and Prophesies, and many Persons tending hereunto have been, both in former and present times. But oh, dearest Lord? when, and how, and upon whom shall this be accomplished: seeing all so universally are slow of Heart to believe? To know positively I dare not will, lest I should grieve the holy Spirit, remembering that Rebuke, which Christ gave when his disciples asked, Whether he would at that time restore the Kingdom? Who did not seem to be pleased, that they did urge the thing so closely. Which made me sober upon the like occasion; though through the Vision and Revelation upon it, I had some temptation to encroach upon that, which is said to have the Mind of Jesus: which had its Time and Seasons, which waiting upon, great things might be revealed. And accordingly this Word, in way of Answer, sprang freely in me; Go your way in that Measure and Portion of Spirit received, and wait as Elias under the Juniper Tree; which signifies a Paradisiacal Preparation: from which Tree all sweet Scents do flow, as the holy Gusts thereupon do blow. Which will send in that which will give a Rich and Pleasant smell to your God, in order to somewhat else. Oh, who but those that are of an Elias Spirit that are weary, and do make complaint of their mortal Terrestrial state, and would know a Transmutation, are fit for this which is here Prophesied of?
Then again this Word was spoken to me, That the great Melchizedeck King, who hath charge over the Household of Faith, doth design before his own personal Manifestation in the World, to depute and raise up some, who shall be as the Seven principal Shepherds: to go forth in the Power and Spirit of Elias, to turn the Heart back again of the vagrant lost Prodigal Children, to the Father of their eternal Spirits; and thereby to reconcile the two different Principles: That the Enochian state may be revived for a free walking with God, by the Light of the one eternal Day, to pass in and out; not making reflection upon this course material Body, being supernaturally Cloathed upon with that, which giveth holy Boldness to appear in that most pure Sphere. Thus the Enoch and Elias Spirit are to arise upon some, who will mutually together agree to break through this vile Principle; though it be with Mountains rending, and with Rocks breaking, and Earth quakings. All which make way, for the dividing from that low terrestrial state, to incorporate with the very Body of God. As to this query, The Spirit hath only to say further thus; do not you put far away this Day through Fear, and Unbelief, but turn into the mystical Paradise, and under the Juniper Tree bemoan your disappeared Virgin Bodies; which sweet unknown Solitude, attend for its Restoration. While you abide here the Angelical Powers shall minister spiritual Fare to strengthen you, for what is further to be accomplished by you. If you will hereunto fixedly wait, then also given may be the deep magical Book, in which Wisdoms Spirit will make you Skilful in the circling Planets, appertaining to that invisible Element, which governeth all belonging to the New Jerusalem; with all its Inhabitants there. Now then as any shall desire in Enochís and Eliasís Spirit to break away from this terrestrial Globe, let them faithfully Obey this deep Revelation, with the Councel hereunto annexed.
April the 10th. 1677.
As I was in my Bed, contemplating the unknown and invisible Orb of Glory, longing for a Body, with which I might have entrance thereinto: While I was thus deeply musing, there first appeared to me a bright Cloud, which gathered it self into a round Compass; then it opened into various Colours, wonderful Splendorous with numerous Stars: which were only discernible, as they did not so visibly appear, because the brightness did overcloud them. In the midst of this, did suddainly break forth somewhat like the Figure of an Eye, which did look terrible, piercing through all, with flaming Streams round it, which were transcendently glorious. Upon which I could not stedfastly look, till I had closed my mortal Eyes: which then for some space of time, I did behold, and then it vanished in the twink of an Eye; then opening to see whether I could bear the glory of it, it did retire out of sight with this Word, What Flesh can live in this refining Element? Then answered my Spirit, True, O Lord: therefore the destruction of it I would see, that I may come to live with thee in these New Heavens. Why dearest Lord, is this Crystalline Orb of Light, let down only for view? If we may not partake something of the Nature of it? How is it that we have been so long lodged out of the sight of thee in this remote Principle? if it must still be, how can this vile Terrestrial state be grateful to Spirits, who did pre-exisit in thee before all Worlds: coming now to understand what is their true Eternal Dignity; to live in such lucified Bodies, free and unclogged of Corporiety? After I had thus presented our deplorable Condition, through the sight and sense of what was in the Idea of my Spirit, I could not but move this Question to my Sovereign Creator, Why such a pure Spirit generated out of the highest and super-excellent Matter, should unite with such course, mean, Corporal Forms, acted by a mortal, sensual, rational Soul, that governed it by the Starry Region? To this deep Question, the Spirit gave this Answer readily, That the Immense Deity did hereby prepare high and worthy Ends, in sowing pure Spirit into corruptible Flesh. As first for its Probation, it cometh into such Bodies to exercise, and to put forth its Superiour Might, for Mortifying, and to correct and check all the natural Propensity; which the mortal Spirit would tempt that which is Eternal, to joyn with it in. The which not yielding to, but maintaining its own Superiority, in curbing and suppressing all of the earthly part, God is hereby greatly pleased, and highly honoured. Therefore think not much, that for the present there is such incongruousness betwixt that which is Intellectual, and that which is Terrestrial. That which is Eternal may command and subdue all what ever is Temporary. Therefore be not ignorant of your own Spirits Soveraignty, but call up its true Authority, for the Spiritualizing of what would be clouded with Sensuality. For if you yield hereunto, and are overcome, then your Talent lies as dead and buried. And what account can any such give to their Lord, when he comes, who are thus slothful. Therefore that Parable (consider of it) about the Talents improving, had a very deep meaning: if you should not be faithful in the first stock of Life and Spirit, you must not expect that more high and full Trust, and latter Crop, both Ghostly Spirit & Body Celestial, will be given. Therefore be patient, hold out, and do the present work of the day, and know your Reward is not far from you. Then was the Vision of the Holy Element to me opened, as thus, The bright Airy Cloud, which gathered it self into a round compass, and was mixed with flame Colours so subtle and pure; this was said to be the Matter of all Celestial Bodies: and those innumerable Stars, which were veiled under the bright Cloud, were naked Spirits, that did ascend out of Bodies terrestrial, into this pure Element, and put on Figurative Bodies bright and AEthereal, corresponding to the Nature of the Star-like sparkling Spirits, who did appear to be fixed in this pure Element. Then further, as to that Majestical Eye, which did appear so terribly piercing, it was shewn me, nay, the Spirit did plainly in a still Voice eccho in me, that from this pure Eye all distinct Sparks of Life did proceed, and did fly into mortal Bodies, according to the hour of Life, and did come piercing into the fleshly Womb, there to unite with a corporeal Spirit, which is naturally introduced from Adamís lapsed day. Then was a Secret whispered into that Ear, which open stood to hear, what the Spirit dictated so near, saying, Hast thou not read that one Star differeth from another in Glory, and one Angel is more mighty and powerful, and greatly dignified than others, yet all of and from that pure Eye extracted. Even so further learn, and receive this, That in the productions of Spirits, there is great difference, some greater, and more deeply comprehensive, and intelligent, and strong to encounter with the averse matter, to which they are united. For know, this prerogative of Will, which with God, the Fountain of all Spirits is to be left free, is not here to be called to an account by his Creatures. Who gives Spirits successively to Bodies, according for what he hath for them more eminent and extraordinary work to act and do, in the lower Region of this World. Therefore God hath left himself this Liberty to give to one five Talents, and to another but two, or one. But if to that one, any shall be faithful to improve it, while he lives in this Body, doubt not but it is of very dear acceptation with their Lord, to enter into his Joy, though somewhat different according to the Spirits degree. Thus Abraham and Lot were both from a pure righteous Seed, yet Abrahamís Spirit of Truth did much excell. And so ye may recollect innumerable Instances throughout all Ages, as Enoch, Moses, Joshuah, Elias, who had answerably great Service to do for their God, though so unsuitably matched by Bodies; yet such was the greatness of their Spirits, as they made their very terrestrial Man to keep pace with their Spirits. Nay, such is the power and ability of an Eternal Spirit, through piercing into its original center, that it may attract and cloath it self with the inward Virgin Body; which is the Matter of that pure Element, which thou didst see; and so for Times and Seasons, the gross Nature sublimated and overpowered, may be as oft of this kind, as was formerly; according to the might and potency of the Spirit existing in Bodies. As this was shewn in your Lord Jesus both before and after his Resurrection. Now what doth this Vision predict, but the cloathing of some great Saints with this pure Element. Who do often withdraw from the Corporeal Sense. Oh who can tell, What is here to be enjoyed, but such as do slide away from this vile earthly Climate? The Seven-Star Planets will be given into their Hands, the Influences of which are all of pure Ghostly Inspiration, to out-set and overthrow the earthly gross Element, which so long hath prevented the Heavenly Community. Now then dive into your own Celestiality, and see with what manner of Spirits ye are endued: for in them the Powers do entirely lie for Transformation.
From the fore-going Revelation, it was fully cleared unto me, for what cause pure Spirits, which did proceed from the holy Being, came to exist in mortal Vehicles. It was not for any Sin or Transgression, which they acted or did in the times of their pre-existency in any Ethereal Region, as some do believe, being bare abstracted Spirits, without any Figurative Bodies. Only Adam and Eve may be considered as the whole Universe, and all included in them, as the representative Heads of all successive Generations, who were mortalized after their similitude. For which cause, Sin, and Curse, and Death enteríd, but none for Adamís Transgressions shall be condemned: for shall not the Judge of all the Earth do and pass righteous Judgment? Shall any suffer for what they could no way avoid? God forbid, as in Sin all Men and Women were conceived and born, so likewise in a Seed of Truth and Righteousness, which is invisibly introduced for to destroy and overpower the Serpently Seed, both growing up together, which of them doth obtain the mastership, doth remain in each ones Principle. The most wise God having laid in a sufficiency of Spirit, who in the days of Noah, said, My Spirit in them was tired out, striving still with them, so God will clear and acquit himself of all, that of this Nature can be charged upon him. Then further it was opened unto me from that Scripture, That as Sin hath abounded, Grace shall much more abound. This Grace was revealed in the Gift or Infusion of the Spirit of Christ, as the promised Seed of restoring Life unto Adam and Eve, upon their very degeneration, that they might not be as without God, in that corporeal Image, which they now were changed into. If the Eternal Word, which was from the beginning, had not been their Light and Life, and so likewise generative to their future Posterity, they had been in the same condemnation with the fallen Angels, but the Eternal Word did even then incarnate himself for their help and recovery, and to save them from sinking into that horrible Lake, which the Serpent had prepared for them. Thus did the Eternal Love immediately move towards them, to free them out of the Dragonís Power, whose design was to make them of their own Hierarchy, in their Princely power of Darkness, out from which the Lamb of God did redeem them. Who from the Foundation of the World was the Salvation of God, so still going on to the Ends of the Earth. But while this new thing sprang in my understanding, which seemed to differ from what I had formerly received as Truth, I besought the Lord my Teacher, to answer this Objection that was raised thereupon. That if so immediately upon Adamís Fall, the Eternal Word (who is the new Birth-Seed) did incorporate with Eve, whereby power and ability were given to bring forth wholly after the Spirit; how was it then that she should and did bring forth after the fleshly Image, as appeared by the first Man, which she brought forth in the wrathful Property first awakened. In Answer to this, I found Light at hand to resolve me, As thus, it did not seem good to the Wise Creator to obliterate, and so presently to wipe off the Stain, with which they by the act of Disobedience had blemished themselves. Some marks of Displeasure the most Holy did still include them under as a Terrestrial Body, and to bring forth in Travel and Sorrow, what should have been by Magical Power, and Joy, in Celestial Angelical Forms: but now as the effects of disregarding the Command of God, they brought forth a mean and despicable Image, according to their own Likeness. But then I further queried, but this Corporiety might have been Sinless, if Original Righteousness was also infused, by the immortal Spark of Life entering in, to incorporate with the outward Elementary Birth. That Spirit which had so pure an Existency, and was in free Liberty, should come into a necessitated thraldom as in Cain was manifested. As to this I also obtained Satisfaction, that Cain had the Eternal Light of Life with him, that did fore-warn him, and convince him of the end and danger of Sin, and that he was under Probation, and that the Serpent had liberty still to tempt anew suitably to the Condition he was fallen into. Who had an absolute Liberty of Will and Sufficiency of Power to stand his Ground, as God said to him by way of Reproof, If thou dost well, shalt not thou be accepted; but if not Sin lieth at thy own Door. Which plainly doth declare, that Cain should not have yielded himself Sins Captive. So that in all Temptations, you may know whither to fly, even to that eternal Word within you: who is mighty to Save, who Is and Was from the Beginning, the First, and the Last, Visible and Invisible, Deity in Humanity, and Deity out of Humanity; all making and tending to the fullfilling and Manifestation of the Mystery which hath been hid in the Trinity. Which Arcanum will be daily revealing in this latter Age. Then arose a further Query to be answered, If Christ as the Seed of Life was infused into every individual Birth throughout the Line of Terrestrial Propagation, whereby a Sufficiency was found to bear down and overcome, what the Serpent had introduced of this Venom and Sting of Sin and Death: What further need was there of Christ to assume a Body and to be proclaimed in the World as a Personal Saviour by and through the offering up himself a Propitiatory Sacrifice for Sin; If it could have been expiated by the Production of Internal Light and Life, thus originally Springing according to that Scripture, Christ the Light of every one that cometh into the World? As this is a weighty and considerable Question, so resolved it shall be from That, which seeth into the first Ground, of what cometh to be manifested in time. Now then for these Reasons, it was expedient for him, who was nominated the Second Person in the Trinity to be exhibited in a corporal Form upon this Account.
First, To declare the possibility of bringing in and acting forth an everlasting Righteousness in frail human Nature, which every way was beset and assaulted with Temptations from all dark Powers; which from their evil Center did conspire to overturn Truth and Fidelity in this Immaculate Lamb; for had the Dragon prevailed upon him here, Mount Sion and the Heavenly Jerusalem should never have been revealed.
Secondly, Then again for this Cause, Christ was to be manifested in Flesh in God-like Power, as very needful to become that great High Priest, to attone and make expiation for the Sins and Defectiveness under the first Covenant, which was given in Paradise; all since having sinned after the similitude of Adamís Transgression. The holy Seed in them being weak, through the Body which is included, and falling under the gross Element: which hath and doth in some much more than others, choak and smother the Life, and doth greatly cloud and darken universally this pure Light whereby the good part doth rarely get the Victory in any, till they attain to a good degree of Illumination and Purification. For, this Spring of Light doth get through but by degrees: for tho in it self it is of great Potency, yet need enough there is, for Sins committed in the times of ignorance and Minority; before the Spirit comes, to make the Soul understand it self, from whence it is relapsed: I say, for the Remission of these Sins past, through the forebearance of God, not less than such a Sacrifice was your Jesus for you to become.
In the Third Place, Then as Christ fulfilled all Righteousness in his Humanity, for an Example to his fellow Brethren, so they might come to the unity of the same perfect Life, by the same perfect Spirit, which was in him through the dying Life. For thereby your Lord Jesus obtained a super-additional force and power of Spirit to give, and shed abroad into you, for the working out a full Liberty and Salvation. For seeing his pure Life-Seed was under oppression, he also came into a Body of Flesh, to relieve and free it from the Bondage of Sin and Evil, and also the very Mortality antecedent thereunto; according as it is written, delivering them, who through fear of Death, were all their Life-time subject to bondage: Which no way could be effected, but by Death destroying Death. First in the human Figure of your Lord Jesus, who hereby shewed you the way to do mystically, that so thereby you might escape the Second Death, through the Resurrection, which is said to quicken Mortal Bodies.
Fourth Place, Now then further consider, that this was the very great and primary end of Christ coming into a Body of Flesh to transfigure, and to shew the way of Immortalizing of it, as he did his own after his Resurrection, when he ascended into the Kingdom of his Father. Then this was also noted to me from hence that had not Christ come down into a Body, the highest Saint could have attained no higher State than Paradise: though endued with all the internal Excellency from the Word of Life, as a Seed incorporating with it. For their highest dimensions was Adamís Paradise, beyond which Region neither Patriarchs nor Prophets did arrive before Christís appearing in the World. Therefore you see Christ imbodying himself in a Terrestrial Form brought forth many considerable Advantages, if they may now be considered of by the wise hearted, so as to wait and expect the fruits of that additional Spirit, that is some degrees higher, than any Seraphick Flame of Light. Believe it, and know it, that this Breath of Fire breathed and sucked in, will melt away all your gross Metalline Corporiety.
April the 18th. 1677.
The True Shunamite
As soon as I awaked in the Morning this Word spake in me, What is to be done for thee? Wouldst thou be spoken for to the King? This Word I pondered often upon, what should be the meaning hereof, and for what intent it did so speak. Which after some days was thus resolved, that such who signaturíd are with Spiritual Generosity and Largeness of Love, answerably to that Shunamite, who was so careful of Elisha, as to provide for his Entertainment; even so grateful would Christ the true Spirit of Prophecy be unto them who have such a Proof of Love and Esteem for him, as to furnish out a most holy separate Place, for this Prophet still to turn in into. First then it was given me herefrom to observe, that this Shunamite, as she did understand him to be a Man of God, gave him great Reverence, and would not lodge him in her own mixed Family; as judging none there worthy of his Conversation; and therefore did on purpose build a place of Apartment for vacancy, that this holy Seer might have opportunity for enquiry with the Deity: Therefore she took care he should not be disturbed. Then further this Word came unto me, as not only for Council, but for Information: that Knowledge was taken of such a true Shunamite, who was in Council with her Eternal Mate, that had prepared according to this similitude, for this Spirit of Prophecy, a most holy inward place; with a true Spiritual furnishment, of what was necessary to tempt this true searching Seer to take up here his abode. Then was it shewn me, what I did not know to be in my self so clearly, thus figured out distinctly by way of Allegory. First a new Edifice on purpose was framed by the wise Master Builder in us. Then a Table-Heart, in which the Law of Love was written. Then a Bed for to give ease and rest to our Beloved, that he might not be as a wayfaring Man. Know this in each of us, so furnished out as his own home, where we might retire to him in the Light and Spring of Understanding. Which is the Candlestick and Candle fixed in us before-hand, without which no comfortable abode for this Prophet would be in us. Then again, the Stool signifies a quiet fixation with us without weariness, a blessed contentation. In that there is but one Seat, it shews that here is an excluding of all other out of this Place. The Elisha Spirit admitteth none to sit with him in his Lodging: for this sitting or waiting posture is proper for the Spiritual Diviner, that night and day may minister hereupon. Upon this I did receive an approbation or Sealing Word for good Hope and rich Consolation to us, who could witness that large generosity of Spirit in Love to this Prophet, before whom we are called to stand. Who did put indeed and verify this Question a second time unto me, saying, What shall be done for you, who have cared all this Care for me, in giving me a place of Apartment, where nothing might mingle with me? Tell me now, what I shall speak on your behalf, whether to the King or Captain of his Host? The King here represents God the Father, the Captain your Lord Jesus, the Elisha Spirit, the Holy Ghost. Either of them both can be heard at all times. Therefore, see that ye be free in Humility with your Prophet. Now having such a Grant made to me, I consulted how to act the part of a wise Shunamite: though I could, and might take herefrom great Liberty, yet I am taught to weigh all my Requests, that nothing rash or unadvised may proceed from me. Oh my Lord and great Prophet, I cannot compare with the Shunamite in all things, who said, That she was in her own Land and People. But we may be said to be on some account, as exile Captives, while living in Elementary Bodies, also in a Land under Babylonish tribute, which is very grievous to the Supernal part. Who knows its own true Nativity, as seeing through the Glass of Eternity, what we once were in pre-existency. But now as existing in Forms of Mortality, it cannot be said, that we need nothing further, in the highest degree of this Terrestrial state. Therefore in blushing Fear and holy Modesty, I did declare the Sense hereof to my Prophet, If now my Lord will speak for this unto the great and mighty King, and Captain of the Lordís Host, that we may have release out of all Babylonish thrall, and be brought back again, to our own People, to dwell in the Heavenly City. What greater express of kindness can be compassed for us by the Prophet? But the Spirit of Elisha replyed to me, There is yet a greater thing than this, of which thou hast made no mention, that must go before it. Which is the one pure elementary Birth; for that which is born from beneath of fleshly Corporiety, can never be gathered among those Celestial Denisons, till immortalizeíd with pure and AEthereal Bodies. Ah my Lord, if so, what hopes can there be for us, who are so united unto this out-Birth. Then said the Prophet, Be quiet and still, and after a while this pure Birth, that is all of Spirit, may freely Spring, in which you will pass, where you so much long, and desire for to dwell. But then this was further revealed, that many would be the cross workings of this Worldly Element, therefore very wary we must be to avoid all Minglings with it. For we stood here upon a very nice point, therefore know, and be only conversant with this God-Man, from whom is diffused, that which is of pure Birth Impregnancy, that will excell in Perfection all of former Births. Yet said the Prophet, consider further this, If you do attain to this Birth, know while ye are in this Principle, it is not out of all danger. Hazards do attend it, as in the case of the Shunamite, while but in the Childish state. The Four Elements may specially be in strife against the Life hereof, when the Elisha-Power may be withdrawn away. Therefore keep up all Love, and sweet Correspondency with this Spiritual Prophet, that ye may a Refuge have, in whatever may happen for present or future time, or may fall out upon you; making use of this his great Friendship at all times, when need doth require: who hath a reviving Breath for Life still to inspire. So then according to what hath been revealed herefrom, do you make use hereof in a wise and understanding Spirit.
April the 20th. 1677.
I did see a Vision, which was thus presented, as the form of a Hand, which seemed to be grasped very close: out of which sprung a living Creature, peeping through the Fingers, and so by degrees did quite break through the Fingers. First appeared the Head, as in the Likeness of a young Dove; but the Body was of the colour of a Ruby, having Wings and Fire-sparkling Eyes: which as soon as it got through the Hand, it mounted away as into the Air, where I saw it no more. This thing seemed very strange to me, and for some days the meaning was concealed, having other Ideas intervening, wherein my Intellectuals were exercised. But this being brought to remembrance, there was something considerable to be understood from it, as by the Spirit of Wisdom and Light was made out very significantly.
The Interpretation of this Vision.
As first, by the Hand, which represents Strength, Power, and Activity, as when God is said to do any marvellous or unusual thing, it still goeth under the denomination of his Hand. As it was upon Ezekiel, when he was in the Visions of God, his Hand was said to be upon him. And again, The Hand of the Lord is not shortened, but said to be stretched out as a strong over-spreading Hand. Therefore after the similitude of a Hand the creating Power doth go forth, as in Vision it was shewn thee, what in time might be effected. Then this Question was put to me, What now dost thou believe that living Creature to be, which was so wonderfully formed in the Hand? Ah my Lord, I do make no conclusion hereof, I wait singly to participate of thy Mind, whose sweet Voice and Sound I through thy Grace am learned in, and do hereunto attend. Therefore speak my Lord yet again. Then did this Word pass through me, after the manner of a Spiritís Speech, saying, The Living Creature, which did break away through the Hand, doth figure out that which is of great import, as namely a Cherub Birth. Whereof the Elisha Spirit hath Prophesied should be brought to pass, where the least expectation might be. As in the case of the Shunamite, who was strangely surprized, when the Prophet did her greet herewith: Even so unexpectedly will the Earth be blessed with such a Birth, that shall be hatched under the mighty Hand of Power: which will ascend straitway to this Mountain high. And it was further hinted to me, that as I could not see nor understand any matter contributed, to be the substance of this Living Creature; so it must be here. Which as I was considering of in my self, that Scripture was struck upon me, It is the Stone, that is cut out, without Artificial working, or known matter. Therefore said the Spirit, so consider of it: this is that holy Breath, that none indeed can tell from whence it comes, nor whither it goes; it resteth upon whom it self willeth, and there contracts incorporeal matter; that so a Body Cherub-like may go forth from under the overshadowing Hand. Know of such like, the New Heavens and Earth are henceforth only to be furnished withal. Therefore for certainty that Word will be made good, Behold the Face of all things will renew. But how? No otherwise, but by the Powers, that shall go forth from this Cherub-Birth. That when once got through will numerate, as those mighty Angels of the Resurrection; who will be of great force to pour out the Vials of Wrath upon the Dragon and Beast. Who hath had his Root and Seat in manís inward part, and there hath made all the defilement. Therefore Vengeance upon the Beast will be ere long taken, because he hath been so mingled, not only with gross Sensuality, but also with the Serpently Property. That all now, who are herein found, who are designed for the Kingdom of Heaven, must suffer under the Violation of this blest Birth, whose rising will be the fall of what is Fleshly. For saith he that maketh all things, Yet once more an End is come of all Flesh before me. A New Creation is to succeed out of, and from under the hiding Power of the Almighty Hand, in such who now cloathed are with this present Creation, in such rough Beast-like Garments, whereof they are ashamed. Therefore it is that such mean perishing Coverings, which are not so much as Moth-proof, they do seek to make comely to each Mortal Eye: but here is a Birth of another Nature and consistency, that neither needs, nor will accept of any of this vile matter from the grosser Elements; knowing well, that course Linnen, which is spun out from thence, will no way become such, as must pass into that City: Which is so bright and clear; where nothing is worn, but what is AEthereal and transparent. The Light there is such, as soon makes a discovery of what is contrary. Then said my Spirit, Ah my Lord, thou hast spoken of great things to come, happy is that Age, who shall see such a Birth-day as this. But this question, my dear Lord, resolve to me, which is this. What hath made this Spiritual Birth thus long to stick in the World? Ans. Because this out-Birth by way of Natural Generation hath now had such a long circling Life, in the deep impression of the Stars; that it is rooted as a Strong Oak, that would give way to no other, but to the flaming Ax of this Birth of the Spirit. Which by reason of long custom, and habit is grown too stubborn and strong, for the young plant seed to deal with it. It meeting with many disadvantages, both as to place, and Persons, and constitution of things in and from this Principle. That so it need to be no wonder, that this Birth find such difficulty in any for to get through: But this old oaky Birth shall not be only lopped by degrees, and the root of the matter left still to spring from generation to generation, in those who are allotted for Redemption. No, know you, Jesus will not have it run by natural Course to the end of Time. Thus his Trumpet hath already sounded to awaken some, that did as others sleep in the dust; who are risen to a better hope, seeking to be cloathed with immortal Robes. To such, as first do look, and do keep close under this Hand of Power; this Cherub-Birth will appear, and then let not such fear, that their old terrestrial Birth shall their more superiour and heavenly Image outwear. The wise in heart are given to understand these things, who are diligent to enquire, when this birth will be perfected.
April the 22d. 1677.
About the break of day there appeared to me, as upon a Mountain, a stately building of great fortitude and strength; it was compacted so within it self, as nothing by many miles could come near to it. All the situation of it was green, and pleasant, but the ascent to it was so high, as it seemed impossible for any to come up thereunto, who had not the Wings of a Dove. Neither could I discern any Road or Path-way thither. After the representation hereof was passed away, leaving much thoughtfulness in me, I had for that present time this word given to me. This separated Building was called the City of Strength. Some three nights after, as I was in a slumber, this high Mountain appeared again: and I saw two Persons beckoning out of that place to come up, then I attempted to ascend or to walk up to them; but found my Corporiety so weighty upon me, as I could not by any means, at that present make up thither: which caused great anxiousness in me, for my will was very earnest to make up to that desired place.
April the 23d. 1677.
A further Discourse upon this high Mountain.
Upon which I moved my Lord, who was nigh in Spirit, why such inviting Ideas should so attract both Heart and Eyes? and yet no might or power to come up to that holy Mountain, upon which this glorious City stood: which would be strength and fortitude from all sufferings and evils, which while below this Mountain, we are obnoxious to. Upon which complaint the springing word thus said, how is it? that thy soul is hereat disquieted, that thou canst not possess so immediately, what is made known to thee in Vision and Prophecy? The ground hereof is known to Wisdom, who also will satisfie thee, why this cannot yet be attainable.
First consider thy present Existency, that it is in a very low degree, inferiour to the Angelical Sphear, nay hardly meet for what might be enjoyed in the Paradisiacal Orb. That pure leavening Unction hath not gone through Body, Soul, and Spirit, so as to change throughout into its own Nature, which hath hindered you: For nothing of corporeal matter could ever thither up ascend, though the Will and Spirit put forth with great earnestness out thereunto. But then again, be it given ye to understand, that this presentation doth signifie the reviving the remembrance of what hath been prophesied in foregoing Ages. For Similitudes will go before to usher in the real thing. The Preludiums of which have so long slept, that some fresh warnings hereof will be given to them, that wait for and believe in their day, to see the Kingdom of God in its height of glory. As this City is a true figure hereof, which seems yet to be at a great distance from this low World, as to its mighty height. Which is a Confirmation to that old Prophecy, the Mountain of the Lords house is established above all mountains, and thereto will be the flowing of Dove Spirits, as to their own habitation. From hence, a sweet and fresh Manifestation, by way of a renewed Prophecy, did open from those words, That it shall come to pass in the last days, and which thus spake: That the Lot of this fulfilling Prophecy might be witnessed by some in this Age. For which end, this Transient Vision of the City was shewed, for to quicken and revive the hopes of those, who were Mourners to see themselves remote herefrom; because of the wonderful distance, and height in the situation hereof: which caused such anxiousness through their own insufficiency to reach up thither; as not seeing any possibility to come to Godís Holy Palace, where only was our hoped for freedom.
But while I was in this demur and fear, a swift Messenger from this high and lofty Place did reach out his hand to me; and suddainly this House, which was so far off, was now to me as nigh. For I did see it pass by me, as in a clear Glass-case, as if it had run upon a Chariot Wheel, so swift that I could only spy through the Glass, a light transparent Glory: Which left me in no little Concern, because not taken in hereinto. But that word was spoken presently for support, Thou canst not follow now, but shalt afterwards. Then did the Comforter commune of these things further unto me, revealing the mystery of this City, as to its consistency. Its Building is of a threefold quality, as to the making out of its glorious Variety. The first foundation-matter was all Saphire-like, of such virtue and clarity, as it extracts the Jasper stone, and so consequently the ghostly Ruby, of which three this City is compacted. And is exalted above all degrees of created beings, that none can come to dwell here within this deified place: till a high Chymical Virtue do proceed from each stone in this Building, for a separated operation. For these stones will attract only out of the Soul and Spirit, what is their own; Therefore expect no less than three baptizing fires to pass upon you, before ye can be Inhabitants in this transparent City of Glass. The Saphire, which is the Fathers fiery Property operated in the Spirit of Salts searching quality, to find out all corruptibility. Then secondly Christ the Jasper-light sends out his warm fire Blood-stone, both to purge, cleanse,and heal. Then the third dispensive Power will let out, such a flood of Oyl, of his own high perfumed Nature, mingling all through the foregoing Celestial fires in a blessed light flame, as will burn away the first gross Elemental Matter, which hath prevented the Spirits ascent into this Mountain of the Lords House. But however, draw you near to the foot of this City-mountain, which while ye sit therein waiting, this very Mountain may melt, and before you bow. And this City, which is called everlasting Righteousness, and Strength, will through its pure constellative virtue, exhale and draw you up into it self. Where ye then ever will be with the Deity in Beryl flaming Bodies and Spirits, according to the ghostly Purity of might, as those who are ready for this spiritual and suddain flight.
April the 26th. 1677.
As I was considering of the openings which I had, of that Vision relating unto the Cherubim-birth, which was hatched under the Hand of the Power: This Query arose in me, how the Spirit of this New Creature was sustained: And which way it could draw in that food, that constituted it to be of that strength and excellency of Body, and Spirit, that it could mount away, as a Dove into a unknown Orb? Ah, my Lord, what manner of Birth is this? Shall such a Birth ever be known to have existency in this terrestrial sphere? Sure such a Birth is only meet to be Born, where is a pure and unmixed Element, which may not be in strife against it. For verily it is hard and very difficult for such a Birth to be nursed and brought up to perfection, where all things work cross, rising up against it. Because it is a strange Child that beareth not this worlds Image; as for example in our Lord Jesus, his Birth being extraordinary, and marvelous; so soon as it was but noised abroad, Councel was taken for to destroy him: nay he had much ado to live out his determined time; but as he preserved himself by his inward virtual Body upon every storm and assault. The world that lieth in the evil of darkness, could not bear such a Light to live amongst them, whose life was that which did reprove them; Therefore it is no needless question to ask of the most high Wisdom, how in this Age such a Birth may be succoured and sustained, till it hath got a body of might and fortitude, which no weapon can destroy or hurt. The resolve must be fetched up from the deepest of all centers, as it is a matter of the most primary consequence to them, who have such a Birth in such a dangerous Principle for to bring up; A Birth which is from the Power of the overshadowing Hand. Hence then for satisfaction to this Query, saith the all knowing Spirit, be it given you to understand, That every Birth of what kind soever, brings along with it, through the wise Provision in Nature its own nutriment. That which is of corruptible seed, hath what answers to it, of its own perishing Quality. What feeds on flesh, either as to its fleshly mind or body shall suffer loss to purpose; though all the care be to prop and nourish it to make it a well favoured piece of mortality. Which to the most Holy is a strange Similitude, which he hath no delight to see, or know his own any longer in. Therefore he inciteth and calleth to look after another Birth, that may be all of Quintessential matter, of the very Nature of the Deity, such a pure thing may have corporal humanity a while, for its visible case. As your Immanuel had assumed, as a garment of Sackcloth; in which he humbled himself for the sins of the world and for that end sacrificed it: Who, though he took it up again, it was for the manifestation of greater wonders by it, through various changes, which it was made the subject of. For in that sometimes he was known, and then again in such a figure unknowable to them, who were daily conversant with him. Who after that the pleasure and design of the Father was in that body finished, then the power of the inward spiritual body was manifested to anatomise the visible humanity, for that was not to pass into the Heavens. From all which learn we to discern, where the Christ-like birth with his spiritual body is, though clouded with a corporeal figure. And that ye may not be mistaken, take these special signs, to know where it is truly fixed or impressed.
First then know, this overshadowing hand, through which this birth doth spring, incompasseth only, what is Paradisiacal ground: there it drops in, its golden seed. This ground in its true native Virgin pureness, must be separated from the common cursed matter, of what produceth the earthly birth. These two different soils are to be found in the first Adamís generative off-spring, but it is so mingled and overrun with the dark muddy element, that great care, labour and painful industry is used for its recovery out, by the wise and learned Spirit in the heavenly Chymistry, rightly to prepare for this holy Birth. Which will be easily known from the course and rudimental, that is in the image of the earthly.
For first, here is a pure conception, as from the high and pure radical infusive Spirit, that quickens the Virgin soil, and so cooperates it in to a spiritual Body, that it may be all of one, and the same pure, clear, undefiled, subtil matter with the quickening Spirit: that you may know, what that is, which contributes to the Christ-like Births, wherewith it will be one and the same, that it may degenerate in nothing, from the first perfection and pattern of his Life. But only this heavenly man may be excused, from that personal suffering in the tragical part, as to an outward death. Which will not be required upon the same account, having finished the mystery of the mystical death, through this Birth taking place, and bearing dominion over the outward. But now to resolve that Question, What this Birth that is from above, which is coagulated into one unmixed matter must live upon in the house of humanity. Which for a time it must be brought up in, as Christ himself was, and tempted with the evil fruits, that will be daily proffered from the market of this world, but yet in no danger, though in minority. For it is left under the guardian Spirit, who warns it what to abstain from; whose nature and composition is of such heavenly essentiality, that it inclines naturally to obey the Paradisiacal laws. Which is the second character of this New Creature.
Then again in the third place, while but in its Infancy, it will suck of no other, but its Eternal Virgin Mother; lay it to any other, and it will be sick to Death. And if at any time contrary Food is forced upon it, it doth presently Vomit it up. Then when grown to a further degree of strength, not only the pure Milk of Wisdom, its Mother, those living Precepts of her Word, but the very Body of the Deity, which is the spiritual Flesh Christ spoke of, and the Blood, the Milk of the Word. But when come to that Age, as to be able to take and feed upon that Body, that is extracted out of the very Being of all Eternal Spirits, of what kind must this be brought forth? but even such a Celestial Body, as Christ told them, could never taste of Death. For as he did live by the Father, by feeding upon the very power of the God-head. So like-wise that Birth, which was of this extraction, should live eternally, by feeding it self upon his divine Flesh. Your Fathers, saith he, did eat Manna, and are dead, but I the Bread of Life will sustain you, and thereby immortalize you, if ye henceforth do feed upon no other, but me the Tree of Life. It was further revealed to me, That the Mould and Paradisiacal Matter was found in us, and brought out of all dispersions into one holy lump, formed and quickened by that pure azure stream or breath, which did present it self by way of Vision. And this in process of time might come to be no less than God manifested in our fleshly forms of Corporieties; therefore let us be careful and watchful over it, and to hide it under the sheltering hand of the everlasting power; forasmuch as it is enclosed with a terrestrial form, as its house, where the light of the Sun, Moon and Stars of this Visible Region did break in, and thereby would assume a government over it: which might bind, and keep it under, as upon the outward elementary Spirit. This was my fear and jeopardy. Concerning which, the everlasting Comforter did satisfie me, declaring, This was a free birth, not subject in any respect to the rudiments of this world, because, that nothing of these essences did therewith mix. No depravity in the Nature of sin was here infused. Therefore this Birth may stand upon its royal freedom; for to be born free from sin is a great and mighty thing. Therefore know your New Birth-prerogative, and come not under the power of what this holy inspiring breath is come to set at liberty from. For the true Heir is a Son of Liberty, in bondage to nothing, when once he comes to know himself, he will then assume that Sovereignty, which shall make the corporeal life bow unto him. Nay, as this encreaseth, and grows up to its princely greatness, this Land will be too strait. For out of Egypt God will call this his Heir, through all terrestrial Walls, and Gates, to come up unto that free City, where the Trinity in Majesty will give out their sealed Commissions, for what this Birth of might and excellency hath further for them to do in this low Region. For that which hath been, as the high builded wall of Perdition, betwixt these Principles, and the Mountain upon which the New Jerusalem stands, by such strong Angels as these, you shall see broken down without tool or weapon: and passage made, which the Eagle Eye of this Birth will spy, and will be so skilfull, as to know its way through the cloudy air, to mount Sion Hill, the mystery of God in both Principles to fulfill.
April the 27th. 1677.
In the Morning after the Doctor had prayed, I awaked and sunk down into the center of Life. And there appeared unto me a pure azure blue stream, which was said in me, was that Spirit and Breath of Life, that must put the grosser element to flight. Then it was further opened to me, that from this perfect thing, would go forth an enriching Mist, that should renew the face of all things, in such whose inward ground was measured out by the Golden Reed of the Spirit. Then was further shewed me, the twofold nature and property of this Breath: That as it could quicken and be a seed of Life in matter meetly prepared for it: so likewise this Breath would extinguish that Life, which worketh in contrariety against it. According as it was written, Oh Death, I will be thy Death. When all conclusions be tried for the expiation of the earthly birth, there is no other, that can so eternally anatomize it, as the Body of Sin may be said to cease, and not to be, but by the Spirit of the Lord, blowing upon the fleshly form of it, which seemeth to be so goodly. Verily this Life hath been too hard for all other weapons, that have been tried upon it, since the full outward death could not conquer this Life of Sin. As Christ told the Jews, if they did not believe on him, as resurrection of another Life, they should die in their sins. So as the mortal death cannot quit from that second death which follows that corrupt Birth-seed, which was not in this Life demolished. But then from hence, this doubt will arise, Who is it, that hath left this Testimony behind them, of all past Generations, that before the mortal death did overtake them; they had first cleared themselves of that vile and corruptible birth of sin? Sure saith the objective Spirit, if this be strictly examined, how few, or scarce any will be found, but did mortally die, before the inward body of sin was totally expired. If so, how then could they immediately pass, where nothing, that ever was of the polluted Nature of Sin, could come in. As to this obscure and deep Query, of which I my self with others, have been universally ignorant, as not finding out the several reservatories, that Spirits did pass into: The letter of the Scripture not opening so positively, what related hereunto, as plainly to determine this doubtful matter; But it hath been kept dark, in the foresight of the most holy wise God. Who hath left himself free, to give the key of the knowledge hereof in what Age, and to such in that Age, as shall be worthy of such secret. My Spirit hath been often solicitous with the Lord for this thing, as in case my Body might break from my superior Spirit, and the Mortal part die before the evil essences, which are called Sinn be extinguished, as to their very originality, then into what Orb shall such a Spirit enter? that may be almost but yet not quite got free from every relick of sin. The Key of this unknown Door was hereupon put into the hand of my Guardian Spirit, the mystery hereof to unlock, that this great secret might be revealed, and that hereby the Elect might be undeceived. Who have nothing less believed, but that though they should not come to see, and feel sin finished, through everlasting Righteousness coming in, as a Conqueror: Yet when got loose from this temporary life, they should strait ascend into that principal city of the great King. Which was once my belief, according to that traditional manuduction that I was under. But since of meer great and unparalleled Love, another deep is discovered, from out of which a sure and pure word of Revelation hath sprung both as to this and other Obscure things. And that the opening of this Truth might not go forth only in the authority of a private Revelation, when indeed there is need enough, for all spirits to be tried, that do take this Covering. For this cause a Scripture foundation was given to confirm and ratifie, what was so freely inspired into the mind. As first that word was given to me, to consider of, as in the 14th of John, 2d verse, In my Fathers house are many Mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you, I go to prepare a place for you, and when I have done that, I will come and receive you to my self. From which words, it was given me thus to understand, that by House, the Spirit doth signifie the Locality of Godís invisible Kingdom, that hath various Regions, for dwelling places, as it is said, there are many Mansions, in which are degrees of Glory. Solomon in the mirror of Wisdom had an account thereof, when he had built that Magnificent House and Temple for the Most High. Which made him as in a Spiritual Ecstasy cry out, The Heavens of Heavens cannot contain thee. So it is said of our Lord Jesus, that he ascended up above ALL Heavens. By all which we may conclude, that there are degrees of Heavens, and yet all within the Celestial Sphere. For Adam, before he had awakened the sinful essence, was an inhabitant in one of the Heavens, which had the Title of A Paradise, because of its serene and fruitful soyl. But yet Godís local Habitation was not here, but he sent forth his influencing mist; and here did with Adam and Eve frequently commune, while they were undefiled: but they being once found, in the depravation of this purity, this Heaven could not bear their corruptible Image, for the worm of mortality could not here live. Upon which God said, Let them out of those Mansions, that are near to me: let them be driven out for the present. Therefore let this suffice from the Scriptures themselves: not to mention those particular Ideaís and Manifestations, that to some it hath been given to see these several Heavens; which upon others cannot be imposed for to believe, who yet have not those anointed Eyes given to see withal. But surely there are some standing in the figure of the Body, Whose Spirits have roved to and fro, to see these several Mansions, with Spirits of all sizes and degrees, who are herefore designed; Only hereout excluding those, who are for the Dragonís Kingdom. Who do pass away in the reprobate sense out of the Body. Those left-hand Goats have no portion within these Eternal Gates: a deep Gulf is fixed. It is only of the Sheep and Lambs that I am to treat, who have found out this new, and only Life-path-way. Who though they are not come to the top-stone of perfection, before they see the dissolution of the body; Yet having attained to a good degree, they may come unto the very next Throne Region; and there a while stay, till they have drawn, and assumed a heavenly clarity, that is such an Essential Body, against which no exceptions, by the highest Courts of Dignities can be objected. These now are the highest degrees of those, who before Perfection be wrought, do cease out of the Mortal Body. Then again there are of a lower degree of growth; Now what reservatory is there for them, who may be but young in the New Birth? As to this, it was clearly imparted unto my Intellect, that such did enter into a more inferiour Mansion than Paradise, for that was too pure and serene for such. Therefore a lower degree is prepared for them, till they do attain to an Increase of the Divine Nature. They want not here their true Pastoral Teachers: for the Spirit of Christ is every where with his own. Therefore it was said, that he went and preached to the Spirits in Prison, that were disobedient in Noahís days. For should all the old world have been cut off at once, and sealed under a final condemnation, the Attributes of Godís Love, Mercy, Goodness, Truth, and Long-suffering would have been obliterated: wherefore he must have yet had respect unto such after the dissolution of their bodies; as had a sense in them awakened, for compunction and sorrow for what Evils they had committed in their Bodies. To confirm this, that we might not be altogether out of hope for such as may die in the first beginnings of Regeneration, it is given me to declare that if these pass out of the Body, such cannot go indeed immediately to God. For such will find it otherwise: they must wait till they have got somewhat more, than what they went out withall in this world; and then shall they be admitted to see God. Surely there is a Provision made, for a perfect Salvation in another Principle, besides this. For which we have that word in Peter, 1Pet.3.19. by which also he went and Preached unto the Spirits in Prison. Also these words seem to speak fully to this 1Pet.4.6. For this cause was the Gospel preached to them which were dead: which generally is applied to such as are living, and yet dead in sins. But by the foregoing verse, it concerns the first Position, verse 5. who saith, the Apostle speaking of Christ, is ready to judge the quick and the dead; so that it implieth, there is a Ministry belonging to the dead, that are not here made perfect. Much more might be enlarged upon some particular sights and manifestations, that have hereof been given to some in the Spirit. From hence ariseth this Objection, If this be a Truth, why was it not positively declared, and clearly revealed, as a foundational Doctrine? To which it may be answered, That the Infinite Wisdom did judge it meet to conceal this mystery, because none might take advantage to turn the Grace of God into wantonness: and thereby to neglect the present opportunity, for working out their own Salvation in this present time; which would make for a far and more exceeding weight of Glory. Therefore left it was for the Worthy to have this Secret made known to them by the Spirit of Revelation, who God foreknew would not take Liberty to continue in sin; that this Grace after Death might be made manifest towards such, as did stand in need hereof. But now to great, holy, and aspiring Spirits, these lower Mansions in their Fathers house are too mean: who cannot be satisfied, to be so many degrees remote any time after death, from their God, and Lord Jesus, since Liberty is proclaimed to work through all, while we are in this terrestrial Body. For there will be more joy and acclamations in Heaven, for one such as shall finish their work here, so as to make a full conquest, than for millions of Souls, that in the invisible Regions must perfect what was lacking to compleat them here. Oh said the Spirit, it will be well worth your Labour and great Travel, to break open this deep Gate, and so to put on Christ your Lord, as in his all-powerful body, that ye may make hereof, but one ascending flight. This was the Mark, that was after Christs ascending so eagerly aimed at, and by some in that Age reached to. For Christ could not lose the effect of his prayer, in that he did make his request, that those whom the Father had given him, might be with him where he was, that so they might see, and possess the same glory, which could not be, till they had gotten the victory. For to none else is the admission given into his Kingdom, according to that in the Revelations, to him that overcometh, will I grant, saith Jesus, to sit with me in my Throne. But this may be objected further. Those, who had the Holy Ghost poured down in such an eminent manner, had their way made very easie, who was as their fiery Chariot, that cut their work short. And if any now in this Age, had such a high endued Power, it might soon give them a translation out of all mortal impediments. As to answer this; The Holy Ghost in that day was given, after a visible manner, as a sealing Character, displaying, and acting forth himself in Gifts, and Power, and Miracles: but now the same Spirit works in its beginning after another manner; where it falleth, it doth all its mighty works Within, before it will shew forth his power Without. For if the Apostles had not been purified by the Holy Ghost, and inwardly sprinkled with the Water of Life for Soul cleansing, they could not have rejoyced in that assured hope of entering into the joy of their Lord and Master. Then was it plainly opened to me by the Spirit, that the Holy Ghost would not now in this latter Age act out his Mighty Deeds by any one, till their Hearts were perfectly purified by Faith. That Scripture being repeated to me: who after believing, were sealed with Holy Spirit of Promise. Though in that day, soon upon Christs ascending, the Spirit of working power was suddainly showered down upon some, as in the Acts mention is made, who had no foregoing work of sanctification upon them. Upon which it made the Apostles themselves astonished, that the Holy Ghost should be sent down upon the Gentiles also, who did not believe in the Lord Jesus. But that is now ceased. The giving forth of the Holy Ghost in this day, will first produce inward effects, and be a Spirit of burning, seasoning the Vessels within, and inflaming it with the pure fire of Love and Joy. And then being all divinely leavened, there will be found all sufficiency to do the most wonderful things; easily flowing forth from the substantial body: which by degrees may work it self fixedly, through the human form, in great splendor and glory. So from hence we are taught, how the Holy Ghost hath his first inspiring work upon us: To make all clean, pure and perfect within our Minds and Wills. For we shall be Witnesses, what he doth first in, and for us, before he will shew forth by us the Seal of his great Power to what lies without us: Who by signal Working Powers, and Gifts are to be convinced and brought over to the Faith, which will work by that Love, that will be shed abroad by the Holy Ghost. Whose first enkindlings and stirring, ye are, saith the Holy and True, to cherish and wait upon; till ye are leavened throughout with Righteousness, Light, Love and Joy: Which will make way, for the going out of Wisdoms Power, and Godís all sufficiency in a more marvelous manner than ever. Blessed highly are they, whose lot it shall be to come up to the Mount of Godís Habitation, through all these degrees. This word take along with you; for certainty, that it is possible, for the close, wise, persevering, diligent Spirits to see this great and mighty salvation in the Lord Christís Kingdom, in and through the ghostly power working mightily.
April the 28th. 1677.
This Morning awaking about three of the Clock, my Spirit after some divine ejaculations, was inkindled through the Love-melting Powers of the Spirit of my Lord Jesus: which did pass as a burning Lamp through all my Intellectuals, finding there matter to feed upon, answerable to its own light property, whereby refreshing was found. After this I slept till five a Clock, or somewhat more, as by me surmised. Then I was awakened with the beholding one in the figure of a man, in a blue clear firmament, enclosed as in an oval frame, Rainbow-like: his Countenance was grave and majestical, facing me with great majesty. Upon the sight of whom, I did feel within me a mighty rapture of joy. So I making to get nearer to this Person, thus plainly portraied, then he did further withdraw; for such was the fervour of my Spirit, that I would have proceeded into the very Circle, where he was. Who seemed to be in the very fashion of a man from the Loins upward but I saw no Legs or Feet; but he fixed his Light Countenance still on me, which was no way terrible, but all reviving. Now I was expecting somewhat to be spoken from him, but the voice was uttered within me, saying thus, This is the Sign of your Lord from Heaven, that Jesus whom you have desired to see. Upon which words, I attempted again to break through to him, upon which this Representation did pass away, that I could no longer gratifie my spiritual Eye, with this blessed Personality. After whose departure I was left sad, for I would willingly have left my corporeal form to have entered into that Oval Cloud, where I might have joined the Hand of my Spirit with his. But then it was again further revealed to me, that if this sight was so pleasing and grateful, what would the coming in of the Fatherís glory be, which would be much more, than what I now did see. Then this word spake in me, go on to believe, and ye, who look for me, shall yet further see greater things than all this.
Some days after this Vision, it was further manifested to me, that this visible Figure of my Lord Jesus did signifie the formation of himself in our corporiety, which would be much more advantageous, than in beholding him in a distinct Personality as without us, till we can come to say, as he is, so are we. Till which there can be no fixed view, for a constant retaining of his now glorified Person in our Eye. Now it was given me to understand, that the Reason I could not be admitted, to enter into that Oval Light where he was presented; was because, said the Spirit, thou art not come to the same perfect state and degree in which you did him see; wanting yet, your more high, clear and elementary Body; so that ye could not possibly make your pass unto him. But only hereby, your Jesus knoweth, that these transient sights would have a pure magical power upon you, for the begetting of the same likeness within you, that was shewn outward. For it was revealed to me, that all representations that did not work to this effect, would be little available, as to the fruition of the blessed Object it self. Then I was cautioned to be heedful in this respect, and to watch how to receive all powerful impressions hereby: all which was for the bringing on the heavenly Birth, to every degree of perfection. Then no strange nor unusual thing, it shall be to see the very express glory of the Majesty; when you are Christed, and all cloathed upon with him. Then shall ye see That in your selves, which to others is invisible. Philip could not see the Father in Christ: while he was looking outwardly, for some wonderful appearance of God in visible Glory, he did not consider, how uncapable he was of that sight; but Jesus invites him to see, and know the Father in the pure simplified humanity. God will to all first manifest himself here, in that which can assume the Christ-like Life: which is the only light and medium, in which we can see God. Christ would have directed Philip to have looked for this Vision of God in himself, but he knew he was not clarified in his Mind and Spirit for that species: his Eyes were not anointed, the Holy Ghost not being yet given to him. Therefore Christ directed him to turn his Eye inward, to see the influence of the Divine Power and Presence of the Father in and by Christ. Who gave him this rebuke: have I been so long with you, and yet have you not seen the Power of the Deity acted forth in me? The Disciples were but of dull sight, and slow of belief; so that it was not the conversation of Christ, although all holy, perfect and good, in his Visible Figure, that did give the transformation. Till he did convey his Spiritual Body into them, they could not rightly know him, nor yet the Father in him. Then the Spirit ecchoed this through me, O haste, and seek to be baptized by the Holy Ghost, that ye may both know, and be perfect in the Father and in the Son; then may you see God in Christ apparently. God in God, sometimes in an immaculate Nature, and sometimes in the essence of a Spirit out of Nature. From hence learn to see your selves all fully in Christ, as anointed by the Holy Spirit into him, and then you will not make complaint, for want of the visibility of his glorified Person. When ye shall see your selves in him, and know him in your selves, as the express Image of the invisible God. Then you cannot but walk in the constant sight of that, which is all beautiful, comely, sweet, and ravishing. For then ye will never care to turn your Eyes, nor set your Foot out of this pleasant Habitation, when the Holy Ghost shall be ever in you, the Tabernacle of God.
May the 1st. 1677.
The Original Language.
THIS Morning it was much impressed upon me, that though all Watchfulness and pure Conversation are the product of a Spiritual Birth; yet there must be something, besides willed by him, who is said, to have received gifts to dispose of, as a purchased possession for us. He is ascended to the Fountain head, where all diversity of Gifts are commandable: that may be of great profit and use to his Mystical Body; which thereby may come to the perfect Unity. For it was given me to consider, that our Lord Jesus, though born into the humanity all immaculate, yet was afterward signally anointed with the Holy Ghost, before he went upon his Ministerial Function, which gave him power to effect those great things in the World. So that though he was born of the Holy Ghost, yet there was a further Sealing Power contributed by the Father. For when the Jews were offended, that he made himself equal with God, he confirmeth it by this evidence, that the Father had shewed him all things, that himself could do: from which sight as a peculiar Gift, he did work hitherto such works as did bear witness of the Supream Power of the God-head. While my Intellectual Mind was exercised upon this Subject, and withdrawing from my outward animal sense, I did see in a paper figured out the forms of two Angelical Persons folding up a Vail, or Covering, which had been spread upon a Writing, that was given me to read. Which was plain and legible, but I could not understand the Language; it was said to be Seraphick. This Writing which was so fair was turned into a Blank, and then again appeared as in a manuscript, which I was very solicitous to have read. But it was revealed to me immediately, that this was a high and peculiar gift, that did belong only to that, which was born out of the Lilly root. Which must be brought up, where it must hear this Language spoken frequently; till which no knowledge there is in the Divine Magia. For Spirits who had these deep wonders to shew, could not make any intelligent hereof, till they had learned this Seraphick Language both to hear and speak withall, and so I was left in the demur hereof. Only this Writing I saw taken by the hand of a Person, to whom I said, give it me, for it belongeth not to you, which I presently gave to the view of another, that was present; but neither of them could find out the Language of the Writing. By which my Spirit did conclude, that we must proceed to a further learning, for to know what is in the heights and depths, wherein all lawful and allowable secrets are couched, to be understood. Had not Moses been taken up to God forty days, and in that holy separated Mount, been all new organized, he could never have understood Godís speech unto him; so as to comprehend, and know how to make an interpretation, and how to bring it down unto the people; by translating it out of the Seraphick tongue, into the formal speech of terrestrial organical Creatures. So from hence it was given me further to see, that there was a New Ministration, which I had not looked into, that was of great expediency.
May the 2d. 1677.
This next day being the second of May, waiting upon the further opening of this Vision, and making my application for our enrichment, with this heavenly gift, it appearing to be of great use and consequence: I presently found myself environed with a body of Light, with a noise as of rushing waters, which were called the Seraphick sounds, for I felt a mighty sweet influence from them. Finding my Spirit sinking deeper into this heavenly center; whereout did arise gusts of Air and Flames of Celestial Fire, with springs of Water, as a fountain of Joy, and dust of Gold all sparkling and herewith mingling; and this was a wonderful presentation. All which I did as sensibly feel to strengthen, to quicken, and enliven the inward; as I often naturally felt the influences of the outward Elements upon the outward Body, to cause Dullness, Pain, Grief, and Sorrow. And further, there was a Voice, that did distinctly eccho in me, that all these influencing Powers from the heavenly Body, did come down to enrich, and make fat the Soil and Magical Ground, in which the unction Birth was rooted. For this Pure and AEthereal Body (which hath commixed it self into such a high Essentiality) is designed to feed, revive, strengthen, and rejoyce, what is of its own Elementary Body. Therefore it is meet for such, in whom this New Birth is raised, that they do often bring and lay it where the warm beamings of our Sun may overshadow it: that is, that the quintessential power of all things may send forth its strong spiritual influences upon it; so hereby it may grow mighty and strong to relieve the depressed Life from the grosser Element, which hath enkindled, whatever is of torment, trouble, and strife. Therefore cryed the Spirit, whatever ye do, let this be chiefly minded. For your liberty and redeeming Power lieth in this fair Lilly, springing from the feeding Life of this bright Elementary Body: Which your Lord said, he gave for the Life of the World; for hereby it can only be renewed again.
May the 3d. 1677.
This Morning being the third of May, something more did open to me of the Vision. That whereas I saw a Vail folded up by the two, who were in long Garments, girt about with Girdles, which I omitted before to mention: Who were figured out to be Angelical Messengers, sent to draw away, and to wind up the Covering, that had overspread the Writing. By this it was signified, that there was one remove made, in order to the understanding, and knowing what was further therefrom to be revealed. For already there was much of the Vail removed, which hid the meaning of the Spirit in that visible Writing: which alluded also to the Scriptures, but was now upon the removing, that so the true intent of the Spirit might come to be known. And further it was moved in me, why I could not read, when the Vail was removed, seeing I had found that favour as to have that covert taken off, that had darkened, and hid the Heavenly Mystery from the understanding? Why might it not be given me to know also, what was in that Inscription?
Answer, To this it was whisperíd by a soft voice, that there was something in that, which was yet to be kept secret; it contained that, whereof the Scripture had made no mention, and therefore it was presented to me in an unknown tongue and language, which should be learned in its time, and understood, being reserved for its proper season. For as there was a new song that none could learn, but such as were perfecty redeemed from the earth; so verily there is an everlasting Gospel that none shall understand the language of but such as are made again all new, from this pure extracted matter. Which will be all spiritually organised: whence they shall be apt then to hear and learn, what is yet concealed by the Deity, for a future day of Manifestation. This is only your present business and work, to gather in more golden soil to inrich your Land, that your Lilly-birth may arrive to a spotless perfection. Then with clear Eyes ye shall see, what is written within the Table-mind of the Spirit, for this is the day, when there shall be no need of teaching one another. Wisdoms-birth carrieth that Lamp, which never goeth out. All of her Births will have the light Element evermore encompassing them; so that whatever may come forth in Proverbs or Dark-sayings, the Spirit of Wisdom and Revelation is at hand to interpret. None of her Off-spring shall be brought up illiterate, but shall be taught in their own Mother-tongue, who shall come to be a People of a Pure Language and Seraphick Speech. Therefore saith the Spirit, consider of all those things, that may make you acceptable and meet here for it. For it is the Fathers pleasure, that in this very Principle, this great change should be wrought in reference to this immortalized state. Upon this Birth then will be hung all those sparkling Stones and beautifying Gifts, that will be the true Royal Stamp upon you. But this caution take, be sure to carry a deaf Ear to all, that will solicitate you herefrom. Remembering, while ye live in this Airy Region, the Prince thereof will readily mingle his corrupt elementary matter with your will Spirit; then in danger is all to be turned into a blank, as in Vision ye did see. Therefore watch and keep to that, which will keep your Lilly-birth herefrom.
May the 7th. 1677.
Being met together in the Power of the Lord, to breathe out to each other, what was opened from this Life-spring; Just upon the concluding part thereof, I saw in Vision, a Covering passing before me, the ground was scarlet all set or wrought with studs of sparkling Gold, with this word going along with it: Of such like as this will be the Furniture of that place, where the Most Holy will dwell. Then in Prayer I had a suddain aspect of a Countenance, who looked all pleasant; and this word came with it, and said. Jesus looked upon them, and said, Ye are not far from the Kingdom of God.
May the 8th. 1677.
This Morning a shivering, influencing Power, and Presence was witnessed about my heart. After which this salutation I had, in the known speech of that, which did so gird about the Intellectual Mind, uttering these words; wilt thou make a full dispose of thy Spirit, Soul, and Body unto thy Lord, who is willing to assume all to himself, that he might make it his proper Workhouse? But consider well, and be not rash in this thing: for if thou dost contract to make all over unto me, thy true Immanuel, then nothing is henceforth hereof, to be parcelled out from him, who is come to be a Purchaser for the whole; that none may come in for any part besides me. For I have a sufficiency of stock to set all awork. In this your Jesus will be properly all, who well knows upon what account, he demands to have all turned over to him, to act, work, and do wholly after the pleasure of his own Spirit. For while the exteriour Will, and the rational Mind with all their train of senses, do but in part bear rule, and here up and down float; (though giving their Vote according to the moral and sober part of things,) all those must give place to another birth, that will excell all this Righteousness. Now you that are come to that degree of knowledge, as to discern the right-hand Gate from the left: Who have been sometimes under the Discipline of the Spirit, as also sometimes under the Gifts and Powers from the Celestial Orb: to you then, who have thus tasted, the Lord is gracious; can ye give up all propriety in yourselves, to be in very deed no longer your own; Being come to that grown Age, as to make a true sale of your selves to such a Purchaser, as is come to buy without Money, or Price, or any thing of this Worlds Merchandise? You are now known to him, and he to you, who now proffers to give his own Life for yours. Oh who would not strike up such a bargain, as this is, that so henceforth for you to live, it may be Christ. Who will at another rate, manage your very corporeal state, and upon much better advantages, then ye have done, while ye live under this Starry Regions influences, which is the light and might of the Man of Sense and Reason, whose Sun must so go down, as never more to rise. When this Day-star appears in you, all the exteriour Lights will go out.
May the 9th. 1677.
This day my Spirit was cast into a very serious and deep debate about that Proposal, which was the other morning, so audibly made by the Spirit of our Lord Jesus unto us. Whose Faces hereunto were set , and our Minds hereunto inclined. I had another onset, by the Friend of him, who most willing is to become our Bridegroom. Who still urged this thing mightily, concerning the actual passing away of our selves, so as to be entirely the Lords, moving it again in this word: Who, who can come as a very Christ to be, who stands in human property, but those who have bequeathed themselves away, as to move from another Life, in which they may in winged Power go forth. I found my Spirit as in Peterís frame, when our Lord repeated the question so often, and so suspiciously concerning his loving of him: Even so verily, I found my Heart troubled, and my Spirit grieved, that my Lord did by his Spirit press this thing so hard upon me, as if my Love and Will were hereunto doubted of by this my Lord; from whom knowingly I would reserve nothing, that could be demanded from me. Whose Love-fervour hath been so strong, as to give away my whole Spirit to him, who, I do believe, will renew another more pure and powerful Spirit in us. Then was this by the Spirit further spoken in me, True it is, that thou lovest the Lord thy God with thy whole Soul, and Spirit, which is more than all Burnt-offerings or Worship, though spiritually instituted: yet this is not enough; For Love as it may work in an ardent Spirit, by and through internal flowings to the object, may stop again: This many have reached unto, and yet have doubted in it again. Therefore God would have a pledge left in his hand, something given him as a fruit of Love, to wit, Life it self must seal the Truth hereof, as going along with it. Christ was put upon giving this proof to his Father, not only in bare love, but by laying down of his Life, for which saith he, I am beloved of my Father: John 10th. So as God had this proof from him, so he expects the same from you: who if you love the Father and Him, then his Commands will not be to you grievous. Ye will then observe all the Antecedents belonging to this Law of Love. Which Love rightly born carrieth a mighty force with it; it cannot deny, or keep any thing back from that which it is centered in: as hath been evidenced by those great Saints, before Christís Manifestation and since. As Abraham, he did unfeignedly love God, when he forsook his own People, and Land of this Nativity, to go where the Lord gave him a word of Command to go: yet this was not sufficient, but he did see God would prove him further as in Isaacís death. Which when God saw, that he stopped not in that, which touched the very Life; nay then said the Lord, Because thou hast done this thing, in blessing I will bless thee, I am now sure thou lovest and fearest me, and therefore God will be thy exceeding great reward; which the Patriarch did fully witness in his day. Numerous instances might be added out of the Scriptures hereunto, as also the late and private experiences of holy Souls, that have been obedient to that true Prophet and Seer, that daily giveth, and maketh known the Councel of God. Under which seal opening, ye are come. To which Spirit of Wisdom, give now an obedient Ear, saith the Holy and True. Upon this I made my application in great earnestness, according to that Power and Life, that stirred in me; being greatly distressed to know, what was further to be given up, and parted withal, that consisted in the power of our own Wills; having gone far in the self-abnegation, suppressing and keeping under the earthly part, that so sin could not reign, but be kept under condemnation: So as to this degree some are come, As I was thus silently in the Spirit of my Mind parling, this word was uttered to me, All this is acceptable, but the very giving up of the Life must be, that my Name may be written in the very Blood thereof, and be returned in a Life-quickening Spirit again. Then will the property of that which was dull, dark, and corrupt become all light, vigorous, pure, and Chrystalline, as the Spirit of Christ was in the Corporeal Figure. The same Mind, which only respects things that are above in the Fathers Kingdom of Glory is to be in you, as it was in Jesus your Lord. For this is the sum and head to which all Prophecies and Revelations tend, even the finishing of this Mystery, Christ the Light, Wisdom, Power, and Righteousness of God: Which can be brought to pass only by giving up, and laying down our Life, as to all sensitive properties; which is the highest, and most resolute act of the Will-spirit to give its Name up thus and to subscribe your Spirit, Soul, and Body in the Blood of that Life, that must die, that so Christ may be only alive in you. And albeit while ye are laying down with great reluctancy that Life, which is so agreeable to this terrestrial Life; because of contempt and dishonour, that it suffers hereby: As your Lord in his Crucifixion went through, so by your Spiritual mystical giving up your Lives, though as to this worlds eye in shame, rebuke, and weakness; yet in Truth and Verity, it shall rise in Strength, Victory and Power in Ghostly Majesty, whereby ye will possess the Gates of your Enemies. This is most wonderfully deep, if it may be fathomed by the Spirit in you.
May the 11th. 1677.
My Spirit entered into a deep sense, upon some occasion that was administered , how apt it was for such, who had taken upon them part of the Ministry to ingross and confine it to Persons, and Sexes: and to bring down the superiour Spirit and Light under the inferiour Government of the Low and mean Spirit, that respecteth man, and savours that Glory, which is after the Flesh. For Christ told the Jews, they loved the praise of men, more than that of God, in that they sought honour from one another, as the great and learned Rabbies, who in their high learning, despised an illiterate Christ, (as they called him.) From whence I did observe that the leaven of such a Spirit might be ready to mingle with some in this present Age, though partly illuminated in and through the knowledge of the Mystery of God in Christ: As I was pondering, I say, and considering these things in my Mind, and making request, that nothing of the exteriour might have wherein to glory; but that God would appear in such, as little and nothing were, in their own account: and that all Flesh might be silent, that Spirit might only go forth in its own Power and Clearness; Upon this I had a full gust come in upon me, with this word speaking in me, There is a Gospel, that nothing of man shall mingle with: that shall only be intrusted with such Child-like Spirits. For which nothing of the Creatures Testimony will be needed; for it will be the Breath of an irresistible power, of which none shall be ashamed. Then was that Scripture the next Morning spoken to me, Be not slothful, but followers of them, who through Faith and Patience inherited the Promises. Which word was taken up by the Spirit, and spoken audibly unto us, upon the account of that, which opened before in way of Prophecy, as to that unmixed Ministration, that should arise in some qualified for it. Of which much was revealed in the discoursive way of the Spirit: that there was now given to all an open Door, that would look hereinto, from that in the Heb.6.v.11. where Paul directs this word in general to the whole Body, consisting of Men and Women, And we desire that every one of you do shew the same diligence, to the full assurance of hope to the end: Here is none left out, but both Sexes implied. Whose work and labour of Love in Ministering to their fellow Saints, according as they had tasted, and received of the heavenly Gift, God was not unrighteous to forget. Therefore from hence he did incite them to go forward, not excluding the Female, but laying it as a weight upon both Male and Female, as all one in the Spirit, to shew the same diligence, till they could get through the vail: where they might come to the lively Oracle; leaving the lower Principles and Administrations, as to the very knowledge of Christ in his first appearance. Who hath left the whole Creation still groaning, and waiting to be delivered from the present mixed and imperfect state. Such I mean in this Creation as are here fore-ordained to a more high grown state, as to be minding and waiting for that blessed hope, and more wonderful and glorious appearance of Christ, no more to leave us in the weakness of sin and corruptibleness. This hath had its long day in the world, its Sun is upon setting: and then but one short interposing Night will be, before the everlasting Gospel-day shall break forth; whose Breath is at once all redeeming power. So it was further shewed me, that there should not be another Christ revealed, but the same that was, in a more high and transparent manner. Who, as the mighty God and Saviour, is to compleat the work of Salvation through a more perfect Ministry, that shall be committed to elected Angels: that shall be sent forth in such a Gospel-seal, as none shall be able to counterfeit. For this word as a secret, was given me to hear, That the Gospel, that in these last Ages, since Christ was preached to the Nations of the World, was not of that force and might, as to overthrow the Seal of the Beast, and thereby to recover man out of his deep relapse. For though somewhat of this all-powerful Gospel did for a little moment after Christís ascension break through with the Holy Ghost, as some first fruits thereof, yet it soon retired and shut up again. But the Spirit said expressly, Be ye of good chear, whom God doth greatly love: and know this gloomy day is far spent; there is but a short night, before the everlasting Gospel shall break out. Then be ye Watchers till this Morning do dawn, put on your armour, and be not as others, who slothful are, not believing to such a Gospel-day. But pray that ye may be intrusted with the first openings of this Gospel-breath; which will devour and lay waste the Kingdom of the Dragon and the Beast; that so in the Power and Splendor of a glorified Christ, ye may come to reign on and over the Earth. This everlasting Gospel will soon gather in its own heavenly Train: but in Hope, Diligence, and Patience do ye remain for it.
May the 13th. 1677.
The Glassy Book.
In the Night when the outward Senses were reposed, I saw at a distance a reserved or separated place, which was as light as the Firmament, and there I saw the figure of a Book; it had no Clasps or Seals upon it, neither was there any thing therein written, that I could perceive; but the Leaves appeared all as transparent as the flaming light. After this came forth out of that bright Orb a Flock all in white Robes in a triumphant posture, rejoycing about me with pleasant bright Countenances, and would have me repose my self in the same alacrity with them; but I was more sad and ponderous, and could not move with that agility, which they did with their Airy Bodies. But I soon did feel a mighty influence from their Bodies; though at their first appearance, I was as one surprised: but such was their great affability, and friendliness towards me, that in a little while I was in their liberty, and joy. Which no sooner I was made sensible of, but they told me they must withdraw unto their own place: I then desired they would not leave me, but let me go along with them, which they could not permit at this season. This brought heaviness upon me again.
May the 15th. 1677.
Being together met, for the mutual. enkindling of the Life and Power in each other, while the Doctor was breathing out what was given him from the Spirit: This voice uttered it self in that time, All flesh shall see the Glory of the Lord: several times it passed through me.
The next Morning the Doctor being at prayer, I heard mighty internal sounds, and one distinct shout which was astonishing: which was so loud an acclamation, as I never had the like before.
May the 17th. 1677.
Then being in the Morning in prayer together, the word thus moved in me, saying, Let the Glory of the Lord return unto his Sanctuary.
May the 18th. 1677.
In the Night in my first sleep, I saw the Doctor in a place wide and spacious; it seemed to have no limitation either by Walls or Gates; and I being alone with him, suddainly a great throng of people did come in upon us. So then the Doctor said, this multitude will not be dismissed, till they receive somewhat of that, which the Lord hath made us Stewards of. Then did the Doctor preach that, which was of great force and power so that they appeared to be very attentive thereto. Upon which I awaked, and the word said, that there should be a clear and pure Gospel Ministry, not by man, nor after man, but by and according to the Revelation of Jesus Christ.
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