BY JOANNA SOUTHCOTT,
FROM THE YEAR 1792, TO THE PRESENT TIME.
I SHALL insert in this book copies of letters, which were sent to me by a worthy gentleman, now deceased; but though he is dead, his letters still speak. I shall, however, preface such my design by observing, that as men have warmly reproved my writings, and said prophecies had ceased ever since our Saviour was on earth, I must intreat the learned world to answer the following quotations from the Bible:-
How the knowledge of the Lord can cover the earth as the waters cover the great deep? How they shall all know the Lord, from the greatest to the least? How they are to follow on to know the Lord? for it is written, then shall ye know the Lord, if ye follow on to know him; for the kingdom of heaven is within you. Let your eye be single, and your whole body shall be full of light. Commune with God in your heart and he will commune with you. The Lord saith, I am the same, yesterday, to-day and forever; in me there is no variableness, nor the shadow of turning: but man hath sought out many inventions. The Lord spake by dreams and visions of the night, and the angels of the Lord are ministering spirits, to administer to the heirs of salvation. The Spirit of the Lord is with them that fear him; and he reveals his secrets to them that believe in his name. The prophet saith, Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but he will reveal his secrets to his servants, the prophets. Our dear Redeemer said, he came not to destroy the law of God, nor the prophets, but to fulfil them: this generation should not pass away till all was fulfilled. This was nearly 1,800 years ago. Let the learned world explain what he meant; for the Old Testament is not fulfilled, that he called his sons from afar, and his daughters from the ends of the earth. Is Jerusalem new built? Hath the Lord established the covenant that he made with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob? Is the throne of David established? Are righteousness and truth met together? Do love and peace kiss each other? Doth every man speak the truth by his neighbour? Doth righteousness run down our streets as a flood, and the fear of the Lord as a mighty stream? or do men flock unto Jesus as doves to the windows, crying out like the gaoler, What shall we do to be saved, to inherit the crown which is set before us? Is there any crown set before them, that they are so seeking after? Do not men drink in iniquity, as the ox drinketh water? Is not every man's hand against his neighbour? Are not the Apostle's words verified: Who hath asked counsel of the Lord, or who hath ascended on high? for since the prophets fell asleep, all things remain as they were. Do not men try to quench the Spirit, and despise prophecies? Do they not do despite to the Spirit of God, and say they want not the knowledge of the Most High? Do they not crucify the Lord afresh, and put him again to open shame? Are not men the same at his second coming as they were at his first? Are not his words verified at his second coming, ye shall scarce find faith on the earth? Yet men have faith to believe their Bibles as they have placed them; but faith to believe the manner of Christ's second coming is scarce to be found on the earth. And this is what the prophet meant when he said, But they that feared the Lord spake often one to another; and the Lord hearkened, and heard, and a book of remembrance is written, and they shall be mine, saith the Lord, in the day I make up my jewels: and I will spare them, saith the Lord, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him: for to that man will I look that is of a meek and contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word; for he that honoureth me, I will honour; and he that despiseth me shall be lightly esteemed; he that seeketh me shall find me; and he that ordereth his conversation aright, in him will I dwell, and take up my abode with him, and he shall sup with me, and I with him; my delight shall be with the sons of men; for I am the good Shepherd, and my sheep know my voice, and they follow me wheresoever I go; and I go to prepare a place for them, that where I am, there they may be also.
These texts of Scripture let the learned world answer, or I shall do it for them. But I shall postpone the subject for the present, and proceed to insert copies of some letters received by me from that highly esteemed and very worthy character, Basil Bruce, Esq.
Basil Bruce, Esq. to Joanna Southcott.
MY dearly beloved sister in the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! for such you are in the strongest sense of the word, and which I shall be ever proud to call you, while one spark of his blessed Spirit is graciously vouchsafed to fill my soul in thirsting after righteousness; for his divine Spirit, wherever it dwells, must find out its kindred Spirit, which you possess in a very high degree; and that the very God of love may unceasingly shower down his choicest blessings on you, for your obedience and great exertions in the noble work he has allotted you, is the earnest prayer of my heart!
My friend Torin having put this letter into my hand to forward under cover to Mr. Taylor, for which purpose I have got a frank, I felt that I could not employ the few spare moments I have just now, better than in executing the desire of my heart, to testify to you the admiration of the heavenly work in which you are engaged; and to convince you, that the presumption with which you wrongfully accused me in your letter to my father, viz. "that I thought he wrote too humbly for a gentleman," etc. I say, to convince you that my heart is incapable of such presumption, I need only tell you, that ever since 1795, I have been led by the Spirit of the Lord to know, that his time was at hand to execute the long predicted judgments on an apostate world, out of which he would preserve a people to serve and obey him in purity of spirit and holiness of living; and that in 1798 I was urged by the same Spirit to quit an office, which I had held 14 years under government, with credit and approbation, from a conscientious desire to fulfil the express command of Christ against swearing oaths. And I immediately published an exhortation to the world against the rapidly increasing Sin of swearing oaths, and testifying my firm belief in the Divine Mission of Richard Brothers. I have also further to say, that I received your two first books with rapture, before my father had seen them; for I put them into his hand with that assurance, as he can testify. Now, believe me, I do not mention these things out of pride and vanity (for I know of mine own self I can do nothing, and that every good gift cometh from the Lord,) but only to justify myself in your eyes, and to convince you how incapable I am of imagining any thing prejudicial to you. For after bearing up against the buffetings of the world, and the ridicule and persecution of my former friends and relations; after sacrificing every worldly consideration for the testimony of Jesus, God forbid I should turn back, and lose the promised reward! Nor do I mean to detract from the merit of my worthy father, when I add, that for five years (that is, from 1795 to 1800) I experienced a warm opposer even in him; for the Lord can reveal himself to whom he pleases, how he pleases, and when he pleases, and it is our duty to receive the heavenly visitor with humility and thanksgiving, in the way in which it pleaseth him to send it. Another time I will take the liberty to send you an account of a remarkable vision with which I was favoured on the 4th of March, 1795.
I observe, by your last letter to my father, you received the guinea which my wife (not my father) sent by young Mr. Taylor, as a trifling testimony of her christian love for you. And it gives me inexpressible pleasure to tell you (mind I do it as a duty, and in humility, not in pride), the Lord has blessed my endeavour to make you a present of a little purse with success, and in the course of next week I hope be able to send you a token of our love and affection. I wish it was ten times the sum; but for these five years I have felt it my duty, as a christian, to relieve the distressed servants of the Lord, whenever they fell in my way, which has greatly lessened my means and power to fulfil in this respect the desire of my heart; "but such as I have, I freely give unto thee;" and may the God of Love and Peace be with you, now and henceforth for ever, is the wish of, my dear Sister,
Yours most affectionately,
No. 77, Jermyn Street, St. James's,
22nd August, 1801.
P.S.-It gave me great pleasure to hear my very worthy friend, the Rev. Mr. Foley, had written to you. I expect him in town every day, when you will be the frequent subject of our conversation.
Basil Bruce, Esq. to Joanna Southcott.
London, 31st August, 1801.
My dear Sister in the Lord!
As it is impossible for me to give you an adequate idea of the grateful feelings with which my soul was overwhelmed at the perusal of your very kind letter, I shall only say, that when the Lord permits, and you have time, you cannot confer a greater favour on me and my dear wife than by writing: I am truly sorry it is not in my power to write you a proper answer just now, as the whole of this day has been fully occupied in a variety of business previous to leaving town at 5 o'clock tomorrow morning for Lincolnshire, where I expect to meet my father, who was this day to set off from his living in Wiltshire across the country to Market-Deeping, where he has a married daughter residing; and I could not delay another post to beg your acceptance of the enclosed, as another instance of the Lord's favour to you his faithful servant, as well as to those he has deemed worthy instruments to further his glorious work, in you, and by you. In order to make the conveyance quite safe, I paid £14 into my banker's hands, and got a post-bill from them, payable to Mr. Taylor, as being more in the way in negotiating such notices, and have requested him to pay you the amount.
In order to acquaint you with particulars, I must tell you, the day after I received your letters, I went to my worthy and spiritual friend, Mr. Sharp, who lives at No. 50, Titchfield Street, Mary-le-bone, well knowing his ability and inclination to send you a token of christian love. After reading your letters with great inward pleasure, he presented me with seven guineas, saying, he had long had it on his mind to beg your acceptance of a trifle. I cannot express to you how my soul leaped with joy, and pouring out of gratitude to the Lord on the occasion. I hope you will write a few lines when you can. Two guineas are from my sister Beecraft and her husband at Deeping, where I am going on a visit; the rest of the money is from myself and wife, except a guinea my father desired me to send from him, whenever I was able to make a sum worth sending. I perceive you still labour under a mistake, with respect to my having said something about my father's writing with too much humility and familiarity to you; for I call God to witness, that no such ideas ever entered my head, nor any such words ever escaped my lips. All I said to my father on his giving me one of his letters to you to read was, that I thought he occupied too much of his letter in relating trifling domestic anecdotes, which could not be very interesting to you, who was occupied with the great work of the Lord. However, if that circumstance was the occasion of your relating the wonderful history of your life, I am satisfied it was all ordered for the best, and I praise God for it. When you favour me with another letter, pray explain further the mystery of the Father and the Son coming one after the other, as all the shadows come to you from the substance; because in your book you say, the shadows come first, or one year, and the substance the next. Please to direct your letters for me and my father, as usual, to Jermyn Street, and my wife will forward them.
Mrs. Bruce, and my friend, Mr. Brian, who is here, and is a highly favoured character in spiritual things, unite in christian love, etc., with,
My dear friend,
Yours ever sincerely in the love of the truth,
My readers will particularly notice, that the contents of the two foregoing letters were communicated to me in July, nearly a month before they were written, when it was foretold me that the Lord would raise up for me friends in London, who would readily grant me any assistance in the prosecution of this work.
In the book of printed letters you will see the promise was made, that the Lord would send a blessing for their sakes, and stop the rain in the time of harvest: the truth of both followed, as you find by the letters and harvest; though at the beginning of the harvest, it is well known, the crops were likely to be spoiled by rain, and judged so by most, as it rained both old and new St. Swithin's day, which have always been remarked to bring a long continued rain: yet all these scenes changed on a sudden: the rain ceased as promised, and brought in a plentiful harvest. This I know the ignorant part of mankind will laugh at, and say, will the Lord send a blessing or a curse, as her words are believed or disbelieved? But you know I have told you, they are not my words, but the words of the Lord. But come now to your Bible. Did not the Lord, in every age of the world, send a blessing or a curse, as the prophets were believed or disbelieved? Witness Nineveh, Sodom, or Gomorrah, and trace all your Bibles back; do not you say, the eye of the Lord is everywhere present? Then was his eye not present in 1798, when I wrote a letter from Bristol on Aug. 23 of that year, stating, that if my writings were mocked, and men refused to search out the truth, the anger of the Lord would be kindled, and the following harvest would be hurt by sun? If men despised the words of the Lord, and brought a burden on me, so the Lord would bring a burden on the land in the succeeding years. Now I must give my readers to understand, that in the following year my writings were despised and mocked before the harvest, and my letters turned back with contempt to me again, which caused a heavy burden on my mind and heart, and tears like a fountain flowed from my eyes, I was answered; "as men increase thy sorrows I will increase theirs; and as thy letters were turned back with contempt, so shall their prayers for the harvest;" and so it followed. Prayers were every Sunday offered up in all places of worship, that the Lord would stay his heavy hand to stop the rain in 1799; but they were treated like my letter, and turned back with anger unanswered, and not granted, till the harvest was hurt by rain, and brought in a scarcity. Now my readers must understand, some of my letters were burnt in contempt. Then I was answered; the Lord will in his anger burn up the land in the following year; and it proved so; as it was said they had done despite to the Spirit of God, and had kindled the anger of the Lord to a flame, which should burn upon the land. Now the following year, 1800, many fields of barley were so much burnt, that they brought forth no grain, which produced a much greater scarcity and dearth than the former; and had other nations met with the like affliction, so as to have prevented their sending us a supply, we should have wanted bread before the harvest.
I was then ordered to get my writings printed, and if there were found just men and ministers to search out the truth of them, I was promised the harvest in 1801, should produce great plenty (see page 18 of my first book). So ministers did begin to search out the truths of my writings as soon as they were made public; the harvest was abundant as proved; and the heavy load of the land began to lessen, as the ministers and other good men had lessened mine. Now if any men, endowed with sense and reason, believe the sacred truth of the Bible, that the eye of the Lord is everywhere present, round our beds and round our paths and all our words and ways are open before him, then all these things were open to his view. The Lord knew I had written, he would deal with men as men dealt with me. But can you believe the Lord would verify these words if the Lord had not spoken them himself? Certainly not. I must first believe there is no knowledge in the Most High, before I can believe these truths would have followed, had they not been spoken by the Most High; He that spoke them, had power to fulfil them as he hath done; and I believe it to be from that Supreme Power alone, who governs the world; persuaded that no other power can make the sun and rain obey him.
Now I shall proceed to give the answer of the Spirit to what is here written:-
"Now thou hast ended, I'll begin:
Awake, ye simple sons of men!
And from the death of sin arise,
And then I'll open both your eyes.
Can you suppose a woman's hand
Could in such order ever stand
In perfect truth and a straight line,
Unless the writings all were mine?
No-man I'll prove you're totally dead,
Plucked from the root, as then I said,
Because yourselves you plucked from ME,
For good and evil on the tree
That was of knowledge there was placed-
I'll answer now the fallen race;
The angels that I cast from heaven
Had knowledge to them surely given,
Which they pronounced to be good,
And so the tree of knowledge stood:
The under branches I placed there
To show if he did man ensnare,
That to his knowledge man would come.
The good I now shall show to man,
Is like the grains of wheat that die,
And in the earth concealed do lie
And do appear first like a blade,
And afterwards each ear is seed,
First for the shoot, and to appear
And then the blossom you see clear,
Before it comes to perfect corn
To bring the increase unto man.
So here the parable is plain-
You know my wheat I called man;
That first I told him he should die,
And can you prove I then did lie?
For nothing but the blades appear
In every age-I now see clear
There's nothing but the blade in man;
His wisdom, like the wheat is gone
Dead in the bowels of the earth,
So perfectly the Scripture saith;
And when the blades of wheat appear
The husbandman may ask you there
What seed he in the field did sow?
Thousands will say they do not know,
Before by them the ear is seen.
And now to reason I'll begin,
And like the husbandman appear-
My seed is sown, I tell you here;
And as the blades of wheat ye see,
The husbandman now asks of ye,
What seed is sown amongst the ground?
My word's the wheat-the blade is found
Among the nations now to spring.
And here's the mystery of the thing:
Let any husbandman appear,
He'd tell the sowers wheat was there;
While those who did not understand,
A different grain they might command,
And say 'twas barley, oats, or rye;
And perfect so my word does lie-
Until my harvest does appear
Thousands know not what grain is here,
But every husbandman can see,
Before the time, what grains they be.
So let a husbandman appear,
With whom myself I do compare,
Then by the blade he'd surely know
The wheat is sown, the blades do grow
So different from another blade;
The husbandman is not misled.
So now, my friends, I've shown you here
How with myself I you compare,
Who can be judges of the Word,
And say the writing came from God;
But you that cannot see it clear,
Confess no husbandman ye are,
That are acquainted with my ways,
And so the blade deceives your eyes.
In every age this has been done;
My words were like the seeds were sown,
And when the blades to man appear,
None but the husbandman saw clear
That e'er the seed could be my Word,
Nor judged the husbandman the Lord,
Unless their spirit joined with ME,
Then husbandmen alike must be.
So here the parable is plain!
I've answered now the sons of men,
And if the word you do not know,
Give to my husbandmen their due,
That the true judges they must be,
Who join in husbandry with me;
And you as well may give it up
As you would do the sower's crop;
For when the harvest does appear,
You must confess the sower there
Was the true judge what he did sow,
And you'd no wisdom for to know
What seed was buried in the earth.
Now mark the Spirit what it saith;
For deep's the parable for man,
For none can judge thy written hand
Who have no knowledge of my ways,
Nor know the wheat I mean to raise
Unto the blossom of the ear,
And fast my harvest shall appear;
For man is like the blade of wheat,
And from the earth I first raised it,
And then I said that man should die,
And so your corn does always lie
Buried in the earth below.
And perfect so the man does grow
Man with the blade I shall compare-
A mystery deep I now will clear-
When him I had pronounced dead,
How could I deem him but a blade,
Before the ear began to shoot?
And here's man in his perfect state;
For by the forming of the ear,
The blossom does in man appear,
And some do kern to perfect wheat,
And so does man without deceit,
Come perfect as the wheat does grow,
And some are deaf, you all do know;
And perfect so are many men,
The rust and canker in the grain
Doth perfect so in man appear.
But now my harvest I shall clear-
If knowledge to the woman came
To give that knowledge unto man,
To bring the knowledge of the first,
Then from her must the knowledge burst,
Or men and devils they may boast
Their Maker's wisdom it was lost,
When first the woman he did form
To be a helpmate unto man,
To bring him into misery.
And now, ye blind, begin to see,
If she don't help him out again
Your Maker's wisdom's all in vain,
To make her to complete your bliss,
Then paradise you all must miss.
I ask, how man I can redeem
By any promise made to him,
Wherein the woman did not stand
To share the promise made with man?
For if the man was made at first,
I told you he must be the last;
And if the woman was the last,
I told you she must be the first,
When I the mysteries all do clear,
And my first word performed them here,
That every thing I said was good,
Too high for man my knowledge stood,
For him to pluck against my will;
And Satan shall his folly feel,
As he so soon revealed the whole,
To bring destruction then on all.
Then here the fool's bolt was shot:
And so he digged the fatal pit,
And laid the net therein to fall-
Then now be wise I tell you all
The woman's promise for to claim,
Then man you know I must redeem;
For when the woman is made free,
Then perfect heirs you all must be,
Or how could she bring on your fall?
Dead to all knowledge ye are all,
Or soon you'd see the mystery clear-
"Our Maker never judged her here
"A thing inferior so to man,
"If he the world for her condemned,
"Whom he said should complete man's bliss;
"But then the promises did miss,
"As Satan robbed man of his store"-
But is your Maker grown so poor
That he cannot repay that loss-
Enrich his children as at first,
And cancel all before his bar,
And cast the thief that robbed them there?
But how shall I bestow my store,
Seeing the thief stands at the door
Ready to steal the whole away?
Mark well the words that I do say:
When I my people do redeem
From every power of hell and sin,
Your houses I shall build anew,
And palaces bring to your view;
For golden mines I have in store:
The foaming seas shall send on shore
Millions of treasure hid therein,
And mines of diamonds shall be seen,
Of pearls, and every precious stone,
I've mines concealed from men unknown,
I've gold of Ophir that shall come
To build Jerusalem up again,
And those that are the first redeemed
May say, these promises we claim.
It is concealed from every eye
What a new earth you'll find is nigh,
When I begin to show my store,
And make the barren mountains here
Become to man a fruitful field;
And all the forests too shall yield
A pleasant pasture then for man.
The furious beasts shall all be tame;
And every house I'll build anew,
And bring the mysteries to your view,
When paradise you do regain,
A paradise must be for men,
Or how my kingdom can it be?-
Now let the blind begin to see
What heathen nations do possess,
While Satan's kingdom I call this;
For well you know I told you here,
Satan will as a god appear
Over the world, to blind your eyes-
And now my little flock grow wise;
For I shall claim the earth my own,
The heathen nations shall dethrone.
You'll find your war is not begun;
I told you, when you thought 'twould end,
Sadly mistaken all would be,
'Twas not begun, you all would see.
And so you'll find 'tis not begun;
You little think what's hastening on,
To bring it to an Eastern war;
And all shall know the end is near,
As they a heathen nation be,
The promised land possess, you see.
When I cut off the perfect heirs,
As Satan's art did man ensnare,
I gave their nation to such men
As in spirit did act like them;
For Satan's kingdom then did fight,
(Bring every mystery to your sight)
And he did every battle gain-
Myself and brethren then were slain;
For my disciples died for me,
And Satan got the victory.
And so his servants I placed there,
He got his victory then by war;
And so I let the tyrant reign.
But now the mystery I'll explain:
When I cut off the perfect heirs,
Nothing but bondmen then appear,
And bondwomen they surely be;
But now the heirs I mean to free,
And all these bondmen I'll cast out,
And the true heirs have nought to doubt;
For I'll cut off the bastard race,
And in their stead the true heirs place
For to possess that very land.
And now, my friends, you may demand
To stand like princes in the fight-
And now I'll bring the truth to light;
So let my Gospel now appear:
You know my vineyard once was there,
And all my servants they did kill,
And so the Heir his blood did spill,
And all the vineyard claimed their own,
As in my Gospel it is shown.
But then I told you what I'd do,
Bring every mystery to your view,
When I the vineyard come to claim,
I said these men must all be slain.
So now's the time I'll slay them all;
The vineyard's mine; the Lord doth call,
Who will these husbandmen destroy;
For the true heirs shall now enjoy
Every vineyard that is mine,
And the true heirs with Me I'll join.
And now I'll tell you that each heir
Is he who does in faith appear,
Believes my Gospel I'll fulfil,
And all these husbandmen will kill,
Who've no right longer to possess,
When I bring in my Gospel peace;
For then the rebel he must fall,
And so his servants they must all.
So now you'll find the time's at hand
When I my vineyard shall demand,
And all my Bible will fulfil-
Then now, ye learned, try your skill,
And let Jehoshaphat appear,
You all will find the valley near,
And I shall come to plead with all.
So men, together you I call
To judge your Bible and my Word,
And then aright you'll use the sword;
Or else your bow you'll draw in vain,
And by the enemy be slain;
But if you let the Lord direct,
In every battle I'll protect;
For I'm the Lord does it declare;
Obey my word you've nought to fear.
But if you run against my word,
You all will find that I'm the Lord:
For now's the time that Satan's host
Must fall like Pharaoh's, near the coast;
That is, to perish in the deep-
Rejoice, my friends; your foes must weep,
As Satan's victories are all past;
I'll gain the victories at the last.
And now a mystery I'll explain
Unto the learned sons of men,
And bring them to the Prophet's word,
And let them know with one accord
Joshua the high priest was seen
With Satan, ready to condemn;
As he with Joshua did appear,
The Lord rebuked the tempter there.
But now the mystery I'll explain-
Jerusalem was then unclean,
And so unclean proceeded on,
And filthy garments so become,
And all are filthy garments there;
But now the mysteries I shall clear:
Out of the fire now shall come,
And pluck from those that are unclean;
For change of garments all shall see,
A change of people now shall be."
I shall defer the continuation of this subject for a while, and insert the vision of Mr. B. Bruce. Mr. B. Bruce was favoured with the following vision in the night between the 3rd and 4th of March, 1795.
"After offering up my earnest prayers and thanksgiving to God for all his mercies and dispensations to his humble creatures here upon earth; and particularly for the inestimable blessings bestowed on me, in placing before my eyes, in such strong colours, the total dependence of man on his Creator's wisdom and goodness-I began to make my supplications to God, that he would vouchsafe to enlighten my understanding, and open my spiritual sight, so as to enable me to discover clearly and unequivocally the truth or falsehood of Mr. Brothers' pretensions and mission, when I suddenly found myself removed from the room I was then in, to the garret, where I continued to pray and pour out my soul to my blessed Lord and Saviour; and he was graciously pleased to hear my prayer; for I thought (and the impression is indelibly stamped on my heart) an angel approached me in the human shape, with a dignity and grace that instantly infused a degree of ecstasy and confidence through my whole frame, far beyond the power of language to express or describe. I felt as it were transported from misery to felicity, from earth to heaven! The angel assured me, in terms the most distinct and forcible, "that the wickedness, presumption, and apostasy of mankind, had reached the highest heaven; and that the long suspended wrath of God was now pouring forth on the earth, which alone would bring its inhabitants to a sense of their own depravity, as well as their own duty to and dependence on an offended though merciful Creator; and that these judgments would be made manifest through Mr. Brothers, as those upon Egypt were by Moses." The angel then vanished from my sight, and which was immediately followed by a sharp angry voice, distinctly uttered from the clouds, "My power and vengeance shall be made manifest and severely felt by this obdurate people!" I then thought I left the garret and went out into the street (though it was in the night,) and found several people in motion, particularly a gentleman of my acquaintance, a violent opposer of Mr. Brothers, who had also heard the voice, and was very much alarmed. Whilst I was speaking to him about so dreadful a denunciation, and the threatening appearance of the clouds, the wind increased to such a degree as to shake the house we were then in (for during the conversation we had entered his house) so violently, that I did not think or feel myself safe, and immediately returned home, where I found my wife praying in the parlour, in which I joined her; and soon afterwards the same angel appeared to us both, assuring us that "the Almighty would presently pass through the streets of London in a violent whirlwind and storm," and then left us. I then thought the firmament was remarkably clear and serene, in order to make the approach of the Almighty more manifest. Whilst we were waiting in great anxiety and awe, I cast my eyes to the earth (for we had been looking some time very steadfastly towards heaven,) when I found myself by the edge of a beautiful piece of water, in which two boys were bathing, and who seemed to be in danger of drowning, although they succeeded in getting safe to the shore. At this moment I found myself naked, and awoke very much agitated, though pleased with my dream."
Basil Bruce, Esq. to Joanna Southcott.
London, 20th October, 1801.
My dearly beloved Sister in the Lord,
On my return to town the other day, my eyes were unexpectedly feasted and my heart rejoiced with your very kind and wondrous letters to my dear wife, my father, and myself; but to attempt to describe the emotions of my soul, or the feeling of a heart fraught with the love of God, would be in vain; suffice it therefore to say, they were truly heavenly, and consequently in perfect union with your divine writings. But when I think of the great mercy and loving-kindness of the Lord, in deigning to choose me an instrument in his hand to forward the great work to which you are called, and to sit in judgment too, I am overwhelmed in tears, and lost in wonder! I know my own unworthiness and total inability, and that I am not fit to be called his servant. I stand self-condemned, and am frequently lost in wonder how the Lord should bestow any blessings on such an evil corrupt worm as I am! but then the transporting thought rushes in and assures me there is one, even Christ Jesus our Lord, who took our nature upon him, and fulfilled the law and all righteousness, that in the end it might be imputed to us; and that old serpent the devil receive the just reward of his transgression. For so far does the astonishing mercy and love of God surpass the utmost strength of human capacity to conceive, that he assures man by the mouth of his prophet (Isaiah i. 18.) "Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool; if ye be willing and obedient," etc. And again, (lv, 7.) "Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon."-"Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest," saith our blessed Saviour himself. On these and such like assurances rest all my hope and confidence; and therefore, however sensible I may be of my own unworthiness and incompetency, I joyfully accept the arduous station to which it has pleased God to call me; prostrating myself before the throne of grace, imploring with all humility his Spirit to direct my trembling steps and guide my weak judgment; O that I may be wise and have my lamp trimmed! for I know that the midnight hour approaches when there will be a sudden cry, "Behold the bridegroom cometh, go ye out to meet him." I hope, however, I have not altogether been like the unprofitable servant who hid his talent in the earth, but trust in confidence in the love of God to clothe me in a wedding garment, that I may go up rejoicing to the marriage feast! Not to occupy too much of your precious time in giving vent to the effusions of my soul, you will see, by what I have already said, that I am ready to sit in judgment against myself and all mankind, to free the woman, and pray God to cast all on Satan, that arch enemy of the human race. I have constantly prayed for the coming of Christ's peaceable kingdom; and for these last six years have fully believed, through the inspired writings of Richard Brothers, (as you would see by my printed testimony, sent you by my wife,) that I should live to see the glory burst on an astonished and benighted world: and it has been no small comfort to me, under all the buffetings and persecutions of the worldly-wise, to be blessed with a wife, whose sentiments and faith are in perfect unity with my own, so that within the small circle of my own family I may say we have a foretaste of the promised regeneration, of heaven upon earth, which we hope to see established over the whole world: six amiable and well-disposed children are the fruit of our happy union. But to return to your letters:- I cannot sufficiently express to you my grateful feelings for your very kind letter of the 2nd. Sept. to think the Lord should have influenced me to fulfil your dream of 1795, and since, in assisting you at the very time you needed it. Six weeks before it happened I had a strong desire to send you a small token of my love towards you. I told my father my intention before he went into the country; I wrote to my sister Beecraft, and spoke to some other friends on the same subject, in order that it might be the more worth your acceptance; but it is evident God had his own time to do it in, as I could not carry the desire of my heart into execution a day sooner than I did: and I am quite satisfied that his time is the best, as he best knows how and when to fulfil his own word. I am also well persuaded my journey to the country was well ordered, as whilst I was endeavouring to forward the work of the Lord there, my wife had a great work to perform totally unknown to me, but for which I love her, if possible, more than ever, and am truly thankful to God for deeming her worthy of so great an honour. The first I knew of it was by your wonderful and love-inspiring letter to her on the occasion, which she sent for my perusal, and in the reading of which aloud in the presence of my father, sister, and brother, I was frequently interrupted by the tears of joy gushing from my astonished eyes: indeed we were all in tears on the happy and ever-memorable occasion! but it is utterly impossible to describe a hundredth part of what I then felt, and do now feel. Gratitude, love, and holy joy, and all these celestial sensations, were equally excited by your divine letters of the 8th, 10th, and 11th, Oct. as well as those to Messrs. Webster and Sharp, copies of which I have had, but I must wait to see Mr. Foley's till his return from Suffolk, where he has been gone near a fortnight.
You may be sure we are fully satisfied with the prolongation of your father's life, which is not only more convincing than would have been his death at the appointed time, but which could not be otherwise to fulfil the Scriptures; and here I cannot forbear to exclaim with St. Paul, "O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out." As to your giving way to sorrow and anxiety I am not surprised, for whatever portion of his Divine Spirit it may please the Lord to give us, the time is not yet come to be placed beyond the reach of human feeling; for till we are divested of human nature, we must be more or less subject to those feelings: and if it were not so, how could Mr. Brothers' words be true, where he says in his last publication, that "This is the hour of trial: it is the hour that tries the faith of every living soul on earth!" It was truly said of our Lord himself, that "He was a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief." And the divine Psalmist says, cxix. 71, "It is good for me that I have been afflicted, that I might learn thy statutes." And in Psalm, cxl. 12. "I know the Lord will maintain the cause of the afflicted." The Lord also says in Zephaniah, iii. 18, "I will gather them that are sorrowful," . . . . This in my opinion is so necessary and wholesome to keep us humble, that I am convinced God frequently permits us to be instruments of trial to each other, and certainly allows great bodily afflictions to overtake the very best of his servants. Observe, I do not mean to apply this last observation to you, as I never met with a person possessing so completely humble and christian a spirit in my life. But how can it be otherwise, while you are led so powerfully by the Lord to will and to do of his good pleasure? As to the trouble, opposition, and distress you experienced at the publication of your fourth book I am not at all surprised; because, as you say, you were ordered to print a thousand of each volume till you come to the sixth, which was a deep mystery, it would not have corresponded with the six days of creation, or the periods or epochas of the world, unless the powers of darkness had united all their means to stop your hand, and so put out the light and life, bursting upon the world at that particular period; for we know it was on the fourth day that God divided or separated the light from the darkness, by creating the sun to rule the day, and the moon to rule the night; and it was also at the end of the fourth period or epocha of the world, that our blessed Lord and Saviour came in the flesh to bring life and immortality to light: so that at these particular periods we find the powers of darkness, or Satan and his infernal host, exerting their utmost fury and strength, using every vile stratagem to shut out the light, and so preserve their reign; but your having fought the good fight, withstanding his temptations, and by the grace of God overcoming the enemy, you have nothing more to fear; he will of necessity retire from the field, and your hands continued to be strengthened more and more till the conquest is complete, and your army, or rather Christ's army, rend the air with joy!
Mr. Brothers' hand was forged just like yours; but of this, and other things relative to him, you will undoubtedly know more hereafter; for I could point out many instances wherein you and he exactly resemble each other, and it must be so to bring us back to the paradisiacal state of man; for as male and female were but one perfect man before the separation of Eve from Adam's side, so I conceive the regeneration of man, the new heavens and new earth, or Christ's glorious Kingdom of Peace, must commence with that last best work of creation, "lovely woman," being reunited with man in principle, in spirit, and in love. This is the leaven that will leaven the whole lump! And as in the beginning God created man first, so he in the same order is preserved at this last period. He (Mr. Brothers) first stood forth to the world in the divine principle, publicly prophesying the great events of this momentous crisis, and denouncing God's judgments against the wicked, and then falls under the power of Satan, who through the human power immures him in a prison; when, wonderful instance of divine love! God brings forth his better half (yourself) prophesying the same things to the world, and denouncing the same judgments, with the additional light and power to cast Satan and rescue man; so that he must remain in his present state of subjection, to fulfil the Scriptures and his own writings, till the woman frees his chain.
I shall take the liberty to send you a dream I was favoured with some years ago, which is the more remarkable, as I seldom or ever receive communications through that medium; and perhaps the Lord may give you the interpretation of the latter part of it, where I found myself naked, etc. May it not mean, that the Lord will in his great mercy and goodness strip me of every selfish principle? And for the same reason (though I hope you will not impute it to the very principle I wish to be stripped of) I shall trouble you with a singular dream of Mrs. Field about me and my family. But I have always resisted any rising propensity to believe in it, as leading to that great enemy of spiritual blessings, pride and vanity; for it is by far too flattering, and I know I do not in the least deserve any such reward. Indeed if it were possible to live free from sin (which it is not), and I was able to discharge all the duties of a christian, what claim have I to reward for simply doing my duty to God and my neighbour? I am therefore inclined to stand afar off and say with the publican, "God be merciful to me a sinner." And if there be found any good in me, I must say with St. Paul (1 Cor. xv. 10) "By the grace of God I am what I am." I have sent my father (who is still in Lincolnshire) your last letter, together with copies of all the others, so that I have no doubt you will receive a grateful acknowledgment in a few days. I hope you have ere this received a testimony from the Rev. Mr. Mossop, of Deeping St. James, who is fully satisfied from whence your writings flow, and assured me he should write before I left the country. He is a very worthy and zealous minister, and would, in my humble opinion, be a desirable witness; but the Lord knows best, and will direct you accordingly: and I may say the same of my friend Wm. Bryan, who is a firm believer in your divine writings, and is a very spiritual man, and a highly favoured character. If I offend in presuming to make these observations, I humbly beg pardon, and hope it will be imputed to the right cause, viz., my zeal for the Lord's glory and your high calling; and although my apparent neglect of not answering your kind letter sooner might render that zeal questionable, yet I hope you will make allowances for my absence from home, and the many unavoidable things I had to attend to immediately after my return. Mr. Charles Taylor spent the evening with us four or five days ago, and told us he had written to his father. He is a fine youth, very sensible, and I have no doubt well disposed; and as such it will always give us particular pleasure to shew him every attention. He safely delivered your letters to Mr. Morris, of whom you spoke in your letter to my wife. She begs to join me in the most cordial and sincere love, and praying the Almighty to shower down an everlasting succession of his choicest blessings on your head. We also beg you will remember us in the kindest manner to Mr. and Mrs. Taylor, to whom we return our sincere thanks for their very friendly invitation. I know my wife will be very much disappointed if she does not accompany me to Exeter, and yet I am afraid her business and family concerns will be insurmountable obstacles at that period; and it is probable her situation may render her incapable of travelling so far, as she will at that time be seven months advanced in pregnancy; but as all things are possible to God, if he is willing, I know she is also; for our blessed Lord says, "Seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all other things shall be added unto you," to which I say, Amen, Amen ! Grace be unto you and peace be multiplied. With all humility and respect I subscribe myself,
Your very affectionate fellow-labourer in the Lord's vineyard,
Thursday Night, 22nd Oct.
I finished the preceding part of this letter at two o'clock this morning, fully intending to forward it by to-night's mail, when behold, about eleven o'clock this forenoon, we were surprised and delighted at the receipt of your invaluable present of spiritual food. I exclaimed, the mercy of the Lord breaks in upon us more and more, thanks be unto his holy name! Your divine letters to my father are more astonishing than ever; new lights breaking in upon us in every direction, but language cannot express our ravished senses at the perusal of them. In the course of the day the Rev. Mr. Webster called, in hopes of hearing something of you, and he was amply rewarded and fully gratified; he then went for Mr. Sharp, and returned here with him; in the mean time Mr. Wm. Bryan came in; so that altogether we passed a most delightful and heavenly evening; all were equally surprised and gratified; and we all agreed in opinion, that not a day should be lost in arranging the letters for the press, in obedience to our blessed Lord's gracious commands. I shall write to my father to-morrow, enclosing your letters, and have no doubt of their bringing him to London in two or three days, to perform the work the Lord has assigned him, and in which I am sure we shall all be very happy and ready to assist him.
I do not wonder at your observations to Mr. Busby (to whom I sent your letter) and to my father on Mrs. Field's coronation dream; for it is no doubt wisely ordered as a seasonable check to some believers, who probably may unintentionally sink part of the glory and honour exclusively due to our Lord and Saviour, in their adoration of Richard Brothers' person and character; but I hope we are all quite sensible, that all the honour and glory, riches and dominions, principalities and powers, entirely and exclusively belong to the Captain of our Salvation, Christ Jesus our Lord; we know without his Spirit Richard Brothers can do nothing; and I am certain he is in himself, if possible, quite as humble, in spirit, as yourself; but this does not surely preclude our belief in his revelations, or respect for his person. We have the most unquestionable proof of his divine communications, by the constant and wonderful fulfilment of his predictions, and a thousand other things equally strong, which a letter could not contain. Indeed, you yourself bear the strongest testimony of him by the Spirit, without perhaps its being known to yourself. I therefore rest in full confidence in the goodness of God to make every mystery clear in due time.
On reading this letter to my wife since it was written, she cried very much at what I had said about her not being able to visit you, and is very sorry indeed that I said anything about it, so much is she set on coming. So I must leave all to the Lord, who will not leave his people comfortless and without strength to bear the burden he may lay upon them.
Again, farewell! and God bless you, my dear sister in the Lord.
Now having given my readers some of the letters sent to me by Mr. B. Bruce, exactly as I received them, I shall proceed to lay before them the manner in which his dream or vision is explained to me from the Bible; but I shall first call to their recollection his being compared as a type of Christ in my letters before his death; and inform them that previous to his death he was chosen with his honoured and worthy father, the Rev. Stanhope Bruce, to judge of my writings and loose the seven seals; but when the appointed time drew near that he was to come down to Exeter to prove them, the worthy gentleman was persuaded by many not to go, and they endeavoured to convince him the writings were not of the Lord. Thus persuaded, and a letter having been sent to London by a clergyman of Exeter, caused doubts to arise in his mind, which made him halt between two opinions, and which his worthy father tried to reason him out of, wishing him to have salt in himself. But to clear all doubts in his mind, he was lain on a sick bed; and his father, whose faith was strong in the Lord, left him very ill, to proceed to Exeter and search out the truth of what he had heard; and as he was journeying thither, to prove the truth concerning Christ's peaceable kingdom here upon the earth, his son departed this life, to possess the glorious kingdom of Christ in heaven; for as he saw through a glass but darkly, he was taken to see face to face. Now follows the answer of the Spirit to this mystery.
"Let the dead hear my voice and live; and let the living lay it to heart; for now I will tell thee all the mysteries of Bruce. He is the man-child caught up to God and to his throne: for Satan stood before him to devour his faith, and fill him with doubts as soon as he was born. For he that is born of God sinneth not, neither chargeth he God foolishly; and his letters show he does not charge God foolishly, neither is there guile found in them. By the fullness of the heart the mouth speaketh, that he is born of God; and so thou hast brought him forth to the world a priest and prophet; and all shall find his prophecies true: for he was to rule the nations with a rod of iron, and with a rod of iron he shall tread down the powers of darkness; and to him shall be given the key of the bottomless pit; for he is sealed to the day of redemption; that is, to be redeemed from death, hell, and sin, and to burst the bars of the grave. But as the spirit of Elijah fell on Elisha, so must his spirit fall on man, to go through all his priestly office here on earth. He that hath ears to hear, let him hear; and he that hath eyes to see, let him see; and he that hath an heart to understand, let him understand. The promise was made to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; but in Isaac all the families of the earth were to be blessed: and from Isaac's wife came twain, Jacob and Esau, the two different nations; but Jacob robbed Esau, and Esau hated Jacob. So here are the two nations, kingdom and people-Satan's and mine. So now the elder shall serve the younger; for now the heathen nations shall be given to all the seed of Isaac. As Isaac stood to his word, I have blessed him; yea, and he shall be blessed; and this blessing shall now rest on mankind: I have blessed them; yea, and they shall be blessed; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against them. For as the twain struggled in Rebecca's womb, so do the two now struggle in the womb of Providence; and he that sells his birth-right to the promise that is made him, for a present reward, shall lose his blessing, as Esau did; but he that listens to the voice of the woman, as Jacob did, shall enjoy all the promises made to Jacob. For in Rebecca stands the type of the last days: the woman must gain the promise for man; and ye are all Jacobs that will obey her voice, as Jacob obeyed; for the voice of the woman is the voice of the Lord to take the blessing from Satan, who was before man, as Esau was before Jacob; for Satan was the elder, and his birth-right was in heaven; but he sold his birth-right there; and when he came on the earth, he came to the woman, as the first-born; but when she knew him she did not love him, and cast her blame upon him, though she put his clothing on man by giving him the forbidden fruit; but man seemed as though he had loved him, by casting the blame on his Maker. But now the woman may say unto all men, as Rebecca said to Jacob-put on all the words of Satan, and so come before the Lord-"We are thy sons, thy very sons, thy first-born, who were to be as gods, knowing good from evil." Then here is the feeling that resembles Esau's (or like the devil's because they are his words,) but the voice is like Jacob's, as man's voice has been different from Satan's, who was like Jacob: and now shall they find, Jacob have I loved, and Esau have I hated; for these twain have been struggling in the womb of Providence from the foundation of the world; but as Rebecca got the blessing for Jacob, and disinherited Esau; so the woman claiming her promise-Isaac's seed, by faith obeying her voice, are sealed to the day of redemption; and it is not all the powers of earth and hell shall now disinherit them; for wrestling Jacobs shall now be prevailing Israels; and I will give them the heathen nations for their inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for their possession; for as princes they shall have power with God.
"But I will now tell you the mystery. So let it be known unto all men, that as they were sealed together for the day of redemption, and coming from different counties, to prove the truth of my peaceable kingdom here on earth, he that was like Jacob, and began to halt between two opinions, seeing but through a glass darkly, was taken to my kingdom, to see face to face. And this shall be a sign unto all men, he that believes in my word, and relies on my promises, shall inherit my kingdom here, and have a crown of never-fading glory hereafter. For now the halting Jacob is come before me as a prince, to receive power from his God, and his name shall be called Israel, and he shall intercede for all the true Israel of God. So he that hath ears to hear, let him hear what the Spirit and the Bride say-"Awake them that sleep and arise from the dead, and Christ will give them life." So whosoever will come, may come, and drink of the waters of life freely."
But now I shall lay before you another mystery, from the fifth chapter of Revelations. When the seven seals were first produced, there was not found any man in heaven, nor on earth, nor under the earth, who was able to loose the seals. Now where is the man who can by learning explain this mystery? Yet I shall give you the explanation from Mr. Basil Bruce's dream, which is in page 19 of this book, and likewise from a dream of my own, both of which were explained together, in March, 1802.
I dreamt I was at the altar, and saw the moon before it, and a magnifying glass before the moon, which rendered it more large, and bright as coals of fire. In the moon there appeared a lion and a lamb standing together, and nearly of the same colour as the moon, only the lion and the lamb looked much brighter and fiercer than the moon. Here is the answer of the Spirit to it.
"Now to reason I shall come-
And first I'll tell thee of the moon:
The Lion and the Lamb are there,
And now the mysteries I shall clear;
Because the Lion, all shall see,
Is Bruce in spirit come to Me,
And he is joined with the Lamb,
And both together on my throne,
Which in the moon did so appear-
Then Satan must be conquered there.
For now to conquer I shall come,
And Bruce's vision will explain;
Because that he's transported here,
(From earth to heaven) let all see clear;
And so the angels did descend
To tell him then the final end;
The final end you'll see is come,
Apostate world! you may mock on
Until my fury does descend;
For I shall make a final end,
And those who for my kingdom thirst,
In glorious triumph it shall burst,
Beyond the hearts and thoughts of man-
The Revelations now are come,
Which I by Bruce shall show you plain:
The Lamb was by the Lion slain,
When the Creation first appeared,
And Cain killed Abel, as you've heard;
And so the Lion did go on
In furious rage to work on man,
Until he did vent his rage on Me,
And so they nailed Me to the tree.
But now the Lion does appear
To shut his mouth against Me here,
As Daniel found them in the den,
And so the enemy was slain;
Because their mouths they opened wide,
When that the enemy was tried,
And quickly did destroy them all,
And so the lion, man I call,
Whose teeth no more shall murder Me.
But now, my foes, you all shall see
The Lion does in heaven appear,
And you, my foes, may stand in fear;
Before you come unto my den,
Take notice, you shall all be slain,
Who wish to cast a Daniel there-
Rejoice, my friends, my foes must fear,
For I shall shut the mouths of all
That now do mock this heavenly call.
So here's the mystery of the moon,
To Bruce's vision it is come,
For he is so transported here,
In heavenly glory does appear:
For now's the mystery of the seals,
The perfect truth I'll now reveal:-
No man on earth or heaven was found
To break the seals, or judge the sound,
Until the elder did appear;
Then now the mystery you see clear.
In heaven the thing could not be done,
Till Bruce ascended to my throne;
Because the seals were given to he,
That heaven and earth alike may be;
And Bruce you know was not on earth,
Mark well the Spirit what it saith
When they came down the seals to see,
Remember that they wept for he,
And some did weep and some did mourn,
And thine own heart within did burn,
When that his death they told thee there,
And thou in secret wept in prayer,
And mourned the death of thy dear friend,
Whose soul to highest heaven was flown;
But then the seals could not be broke,
Men were not found; too much they mocked.
Then worthy they could never be
To loose the seals as made by Me;
So disappointed they stood all,
As twelve together is my call,
Before the seals I will unloose,
And so their coming did refuse,
To have the seals be broken then,
Before I'd all my chosen men.
So here the Scriptures you see plain-
The seals were signed and given to men;
But sure unable they were there,
Until the twelve do all appear.
But now the mystery I'll make plain;
In heaven could man with me contend,
To whom I'd ne'er revealed the word?
I ask you how he there could plead,
Till Bruce in person did appear?
And now the mystery you see clear:
In heaven or earth he could not be
When they came down the truth to see.
Three days you wander in the air,
Then the first heaven to you appears,
And with enlightened saints do meet,
Ere you approach the judgment seat,
And to the highest heaven you come,
Six days I tell you must be known,
Ere you in glory can appear,
And then my sabbath, you'll see clear,
Shall be the seventh day for rest;
As heaven and earth alike are placed.
So now, I say, when they came down,
In heaven or earth he was not found,
Before my word was given to thee,
The seals must not then loosed be;
But sure I say you need not fear,
The Lion of the Tribe is near,
As he was joined to the tribe-
The path is straight, the field is wide,
And seals alike to all were given,
The seals are now in earth and heaven;
For what on earth was sealed there
Doth now to Me in heaven appear.
And what is sealed now in heaven,
Shall to my friends on earth be given;
When they do meet to loose the seals,
Then every mystery I'll reveal,
And from my Bible you'll see clear
The woman is your helpmate here
To bring the knowledge of the Tree,
The good and evil both you'll see,
As she the serpent first condemned,
I gave the seals into her hand,
And she hath given them unto men
As she in Paradise began.
Then sure the mystery now is plain,
And Paradise you must regain,
If you so closely copy her,
As Adam did, you've nought to fear,
For if by her you say 'twas lost,
Mark well her Son then paid the cost;
Then sure her husband must redeem-
So wake, ye simple sons of men."
I shall here insert the thoughts of the seven worthy and good gentlemen, who came to Exeter to examine my writings, and to give their opinions on the Sixth Book; which are as follows:
THOUGHTS ON THE SIXTH BOOK,
In the name of the all-wise and most merciful God.
Thou, O Lord, in these writings of thy servant, Joanna Southcott, inspired, or dictated, by thy Holy Spirit; the same which filled the hearts, and spoke by the mouths of thy holy Apostles and Prophets of old, hast opened to us as much of thy counsels, and manner of acting, with the angels who never fell, with man who did, and with Satan and his associates, who first rebelled against thee, the Lord of life and glory, the fountain from whom all good and happiness flows; and who afterwards, by hellish arts, endeavoured to destroy all mankind-thou hast opened to us of thy counsels as far as is needful, and suited to the present occasion; which thou hast most graciously and condescendingly submitted to our judgment, and hast commanded us to declare, as far as lies within the compass of our abilities, thy laws, delivered in the everlasting Gospel, and thy righteous dealings, to all mankind. With respect to myself, the view fills me with the highest gratitude and astonishment; I am truly sensible of my own unworthiness; I have too frequently transgressed thy most holy laws; and know that it is the Blood of thy dearly beloved Son, Jesus Christ alone, that can wash away my sins, and those of the whole human race; which he will do in the end, according to what is declared by himself in the Gospel by thy Apostle Paul, in these words-"For this we both labour and suffer reproach; because we trust in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men; especially of them that believe"-and now again declared by thy servant Joanna; therefore I should hardly presume to form, much less to declare, my judgment on these thy wonderful works and wise proceedings, unless thou hadst commanded it. Now then in obedience to that command, having previously implored the grace of thy Holy Spirit to enable me to decide thereon, I join with the woman, in praying thee to cast the blame on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the devil and Satan, that she laid upon him at the Fall, and to execute the sentence thou didst then pronounce against him. For my part I cannot avoid confessing, that holy and just are thy ways, Lord God Almighty; true and righteous are thy judgments. I humbly beseech thee that I may never fall from thy grace, and that thou wouldst permit me to search out, and enable me to proclaim thy unbounded mercy, greatness, truth, and loving-kindness throughout the endless duration of eternity."
"The reasonings contained in this sixth Book, in favour of God's Wisdom in placing man as he did in the Creation; Justice in putting down the kingdom of Satan; and Mercy in the redemption of man from everlasting punishment under the power of darkness, and taking on him the blame and punishment due to man-are so conclusive, that I cannot but acknowledge them to be from God."
Honour, glory, and blessing, be unto our God and our dear Redeemer, Jesus Christ! How shall we praise the Lord for his goodness to the children of men, for his having revealed such knowledge to babes and sucklings when to the wise and learned of this world he has denied it! How wonderful has this Sixth Book laid open the mysteries of the Bible, and has furnished the servants of the most high God with such weapons, as neither the powers of darkness; nor all the wickedness of men will be able to stand a moment before them! May we put on the whole armour of God; may we be strong, firm, faithful, and obedient to our blessed Saviour, Jesus Christ! then will he send us strength, wisdom, faith, and courage, from his holy sanctuary; that we may be enabled to withstand all the wiles and fiery darts of Satan; that we may be enabled to overcome all the enemies and foes of the Captain of our Salvation, and through his blessing, be the happy instruments of establishing his blessed Kingdom upon earth; then may we rejoice with the oil of gladness, because his bride hath made herself ready, and by her perfect obedience, our deadly foe, Satan, together with his host, will be cast from the earth; and that promise "Of the seed of the woman bruising the serpent's head," will soon be fulfilled.
Thos P. Foley.
I have examined and read the Sixth Part of the writings of Joanna Southcott, and I desire to bless the Lord for the light, life, and comfort, derived to my soul by these inspired writings. They are like the rest of her writings-a garden enclosed, a fountain sealed from the world; but the Lord, in his rich mercy to my soul, has granted me the blessing whereby I have drank deeply of these living waters. And I trust and earnestly pray the Lord will shortly destroy Satan's kingdom, and establish his own upon its ruins, to the glory of his great name, and the everlasting good and comfort of his people.
The Sixth Book written by Joanna Southcott, must be indited by the divine Spirit of the Lord, its contents being both just and true. It is true that perfect innocence must be without suspicion, and the most easy to be deceived; the fall of the woman therefore cannot be the woman's fault. And it is perfectly just that divine Love should, by his divine wisdom, destroy the power of the devil by the woman's hand, whose innocence he first betrayed.
I give my judgment on Joanna Southcott's six books, that they are written by the directions of the Lord God.
The Sixth Book. In it I perceive and hear the voice of the Lord, through the woman, by the Spirit, speaking and reasoning justly with man and devils; and that the Son of God had suffered the blame, which man, by the influence of the devil, cast unjustly upon him; and the woman pleading of being deceived by the devil ignorantly, and that the devil may be cast, and the dagger fall upon him as the root of evil; and the Son of God declaring that he now will have his will, as the devil and Satan has had his will before. And this I perceive to be just of the Son of God, claiming his purchased kingdom, and destroying the works of the devil, and driving him from the face of the earth, that man may serve and glorify God, his Maker, perfectly in holiness.
This is the answer of the Spirit, to the thoughts of the seven worthy gentlemen.
"Now these thoughts are placed by seven men,
And now this answer I do bid thee send:
The first I thought it was for man and Me,
That man and I in likeness should agree;
Man had my image, and he had my form,
He had my Spirit breathed into him;
All my thoughts were to make his bliss complete,
I made a helpmate for to finish it.
So this, I say, was my first thought for man,
I caused a sleep to bring the second on,
And when my second did to man appear,
He saw his helpmate, and admired her there,
Whom Satan's arts did instantly betray;
He broke their peace and close to them did lay;
And on their Maker, Satan cast the blame.
Then my third thought as quick as lightning came-
I'd bear the blame the man did cast on Me,
And Satan should the blame was cast on he.
So this I say was my third thought for man-
The tree of life did in the garden stand,
And had he eaten as pronounced dead,
Then he had lived for ever, as 'twas said,
Under the fall pronounced dead by Me,
Then how in life could man and I agree?
So, to secure him from that fatal curse,
Out of the garden he was sudden cast:
And so the tree of life did there remain,
The flaming sword to cut the serpent down,
Whene'er the woman did my promise claim-
To claim the promise I made her at first;
So now's the time the serpent must be cast.
So if men now do miss the glorious thought,
Then their destruction is for ever wrought,
And on their heads my vengeance it must fall;
For men or devils now must pay for all.
So here I've shown my fourth thought for man,
How to preserve him I have laid my plan.
So now my fifth thought shall to man appear-
I caused the Ark to show my judgment there;
And then I said mankind I would destroy,
But in the Ark mankind did life enjoy,
And on the waters then the Ark did move;
And in the Ark there was the harmless dove
That brought the olive-branch of peace for man.
E'en so the seal is given to thy hand;
And know the rainbow it was placed by Me;
And know the rainbow it was sent to thee;
So all together you may now weigh deep,
Here's every thing to save my frighted sheep.
For my sixth thought it was to build the Ark,
And leave the subtle tempter in the dark;
That as the world of sin was swept away,
Whom Satan's arts had caused to follow him,
Then surely after, he must go the same,
And now I've shown you my sixth thought for man;
Then now the seventh thought it must appear,
The brazen serpent-see the mystery clear.
That full of fire I ordered man to make,
And so that way to kill the poisonous snake,
Or for to cure the sting he made in man;
And deep's the seventh thought unto you come;
For now the brazen serpent, all shall see,
Will cure the sting of sin for man and thee;
And all that look to Me shall now receive
The promised blessing I to her did give.
So now the seventh I have ended here;
For man and Me alike I now compare.
And let these thoughts be published to man,
And closely after let my answer come;
For here the seven stars they did appear,
And in them were my seven Spirits there!
And seven golden candlesticks they be,
As in the vision I did show to thee;
So now the sparkling light shall soon appear,
For with the law the seven placed were,
To have the glorious light to Israel come,
And bring the Ark back unto them again;
For by the eighth I shall the Gospel join
Unto the Revelations of St. John-
Thou'st put my seals the first and second star,
And to confirm the truth I sent thee here
The promise of the Gospel with my seal.
And now the mysteries I shall all reveal:
The man and woman do together sit,
As I ordained to make my words complete,
And of temptations they do both complain,
And upon Satan both do cast the blame.
Then sure the serpent he must now be cast;
He brought my seal, which seals your peace at last;
And as the olive branch it shall appear,
And in my book you all are sealed there;
Because a third book thou wilt have to seal,
And then the mysteries I shall all reveal,
And let that seal be sealed then within;
For every mystery must to all be seen.
And now I'll tell thee why I placed this man;
Because unto thee he did bring the seal
That shall the Revelations all reveal;
And as my picture doth to thee appear,
Just so my face you all shall see it clear.
One side is darkened like the minds of men,
Whose hardened hearts do Satan's fetters bind;
And unto him they do give every will,
And so my blackened face they all shall feel:
But on the other side there is a light,
And so my friends shall find my every sight."
The Eighth Thought.
Upon the Sixth Book of the Prophecies of Joanna
Southcott of Exeter, respecting the day of
Judgment---finished on Jan. 9, 1802.
Adam! where art thou? was the call of Jehovah to the first man after the Fall. His conduct bespoke his shame that he had sinned: naked and ashamed he was found with human imperfect covering of fig-leaves. The answer he gave for his disobedience was, "The woman thou gavest me, gave me the evil and I did eat!" Here he cast the blame upon his frail partner, whereas the man and woman, being the perfect man, ought not to have been divided against themselves, but ought to have been one in spirit, and one in perpetual unity and innocence. But the woman had sinned here-the serpent had beguiled her in the original; there was the source, spring, and foundation of the evil. Here it appears the man cast the blame wrong, by blaming the Lord in saying, "the woman thou gavest me deceived me." He ought to have gone further, and laid the axe of truth to the root of the corrupt tree; and said, "The serpent beguiled us and we did eat." Had he told the truth, he had then shamed, cast, and bound the devil: but, alas! his posterity have felt the falsehood: perpetual evil, perpetual enmity, and perpetual falsehood have been entailed on all. The devil has reigned to this time on earth triumphant. However, the infinite wisdom and mercy of God was soon manifested in a promise to the seed of the woman, in order to comfort and heal the breach, by saying, that her seed should bring the blow on Satan, and order and unity in time should again be manifested in the man-woman. He said to Satan, "Cursed art thou above every creature: I have found a ransom, I will pay the price for the man's redemption; and thou shalt bear the woman's blame; thou art a transgressor, and thou shalt ultimately feel it; thou hast rebelled against the order of my Creation, justice shall have its course; thou hast sinned against me, in heaven, and upon earth; therefore, I will die for man; and the woman's blood shall lie upon thy head. Then where is thy ground on earth-receive thy doom, the pit; there twist in flames, and there thy like deceive! Then, Cain, receive thy doom from Abel's blood. Then where is Pharaoh and his host? Judge then, need Moses fear? Where is the lion fallen? and the pit has oped its mouth-the covering is dropped-the lamb has nought to fear-then roar no more to shake the earth and sea. Where now is the eagle and vultured host-thy wings are plucked on earth; she stands defenceless, the fatal net beneath.-The dove now has protection; she ranges earth and sea, and soars aloft unhurt, unfeared, to carry peace to all.-The Ark is opened now; she brings the olive branch; the floods are past-where now is the giant race? Who pressed on Lot? 'Twas thee, the proud oppressor! where art thou now?-Where is thy pride and city? Knowest thou the words, Come out! Come out! let Sodom feel its doom? Where now is Lot? At Zoar safe! Where is his wife? Is she not salt all? The writing is on the wall-Thou lewdly revellest with the bowls of God-Thy kingdom is past away-Now see my Daniel rise-Who cast him in the den?-Twas thee! Thou rolledst the stone, thou sealedst his doom-the roaring lion thee! Then let the stone return, the seal be broke, and go thou in his stead. Where is the image of gold and Bel? Where is proud Babel's builder? Confusion is thy name: confusion is thy doom! Let Bel asunder burst! the pitch and tar, and walls of wood, expose thy make: deceit and craft-and pass in flames away. The God of Daniel stands-Daniel rise up!-Six days are past-the Seventh now is here-seven times refined and purified, in innocency come-The emerald unhurt in fire displays great Judah's son-Let Urim's light and Thummim shine in bright perfection's day. The twelve men stand upon the plate-the fourth denotes great Judah's son, who is the rightful heir. The stones denote old Jacob's sons, their light and quality-they shine as stars in Jesu's crown upon the woman's head-The sun unveiled shall now arise; the moon from scarlet emerge; the stars from darkness now appear to light the midnight hour-Then where art thou, O Satan? Where are thy heads, and horns, and dragon's tail, which slew and hurt the living stars? Where are thy rays of fire,-thy watery floods-Behold they are passed away-The woman's fears of thee are o'er-the wilderness receives her child, whose iron rod now feel. The pit has oped its mouth-thou now art cast, shut up and sealed-The saints now judge the earth. The Omnipotent is here, in power and spirit in the word-The sword, white horse-the King of kings has drawn the flaming sword! Rejoice, ye Saints, rejoice! The beast and dragon, the mountain, tree, no more shall hurt, devour, becloud the saint, the gold, and vine. The gold and gems appear-The mighty earthquake now displays the hidden Son of God. The smitten rock gush forth; the rod smites and slays, and makes alive-now saves, and now destroys. The clouds and glory-Jonah's sign, display the virtues of the Word, the light and darkness shows. The Gospel brings the light-and life and death-as men obey or mock. The six denote the suffering time to show the Son of Man-the sign within the sun.-The fowls now feast on thee! Then where is thy former reign? Beneath the rod of Moses see thy fall from heaven's height. Son of the morning Lucifer, no more oppress-be thou a fallen star! Great Og and Magog, where are ye? The walls of Jericho art thou, fall flat! Joshua's rams-horns, the seven and twelve, pass Jordan's stream-Where is the lion, bear, Goliath huge, but in the centre thee? David appears a stripling youth, now tears and slays and slings the stone, and smites thy dragon's head. Now see great David's reign-The temple's stones, unhewed by man, in those days, unite, the King of Peace amidst the seven in oil unite, and in a stone with seven eyes appears. The stately fabric now is laid, founded, and topped with gems of every hue. The ark of Moses now is built-The words, the laws, the sceptre, all unite, and Aaron's budded rod-He now is chosen; eat the bread; prepare the sacrifice. John eats the book, which sweet and bitter is-he prophesies, the temple metes, and stands before the Lamb; the temple measures and anoints, and Moses' tabernacle. The witnesses, Matthew and John, as olive trees appear-the broken stones of Moses now uplift, renewed in books, arise from death-the Lord's anointed reigns-the rods or laws of Ephraim, ten unite in one, and hold by Judah's skirt-the Son of Man o'er Israel reigns-the dry bones now arise. Here ends thy earthly reign. The bond of union now is come-the marriage ring appears-the bride is come-the Bridegroom now receives the marriage seal-the law and gospel now unite-the moon and sun appear-Caleb and Joshua pass the stream in triumph to restore-Where now thou Canaanite art thou? Where all thy maddened crew?-
Hittites, be gone! no more appear to hurt or to annoy;
Now Israel's sons in peace succeed and Canaan's land enjoy.
Behold, from Edom I appear, with garments dipt in blood:
My sons are freed, and saved, and washed amidst the purple flood.
The law, or moon, imperfect was to save-
But now the Star points dead men to the grave.
Mercy benign appears-the Gospel Sun embraces all-the Spirit and the Bride invite, and offer wine and milk-but not to mockers here. Infinity of love and grace! Gentiles and Jews unite, no more from love to part. Six days are past-Peter and James and John, behold my glory in my word.
The law and prophets now are seen with Jesu's Word to shine-
But what hast thou, thou Serpent, here to do with love benign?
Tremble and flee-'tis done: the seals are burst-the vials pour and end thy destiny."
Thus a small part of the thoughts of the judgments of God pronounced on Satan, with his final overthrow, concludes the writer, who is a gentleman of great respectability.
I shall insert, a little further on, an answer to the Eighth Thought, as explained to me by the Spirit.
Now I have gone so far with this book, wherein I have shown you how every crooked path is made straight concerning Mr. Bruce-and I deny that the learned world can prove the Bible to be from the Lord, and that my writings are not. There is none but God could have brought round such a mystery to fulfil the Bible, and make every thing appear in a straight line together. So every man of deep penetration and discernment must say, I am a wonder to men, if they do not believe it is the Lord's doing, and marvellous in their eyes.-But now I shall tell you another mystery:
The worthy Mr. B. Bruce has been represented as a type of Christ; and Christ it is said is the Sun of Righteousness, to arise with healing in his wings; by which is meant to heal the fall of the woman, and so bring in the redemption for man; and being clothed with it, is meant the clothing of his Spirit, which are his Words. Now to bring the shadow to the substance, let every man know, that as Mr. Bruce is called the shadow, I am now clothed with his clothing, sent to me by his worthy bride; for a man and his wife are one: and further let it be known unto all men, that it happened for me to wear it for him in the tenth year. So now weigh deep the letters sent to me by the son of man, and consider well my answers to them by the Spirit of the Lord. And now as Christ died to reconcile the world unto God, that we might be heirs of God and joint-heirs of Jesus Christ; so hereby ye are to know, that Mr. Bruce is brought forth unto the world an heir of God and joint-heir of Jesus Christ, who is ascended on high, to receive gifts for men; that is, to be permitted to come boldly before the throne of God to have the act of grace passed for man, and the promise made to the woman fulfilled.
"So now see clear the shadow's here;
She's clothed with the sun-
For all his clothing she does wear;
And the tenth year is come.
If you discern how I do warn,
The shadows first appear;
And now you see the son of man,
His clothing she does wear.
But in that day, to you I say,
When you together meet,
His clothing there will then appear,
And make the mystery great.
So now see plain, ye sons of men,
The shadows you may see:
But as the word is on record,
She's clothed now with Me;
Who soon shall come to rescue man,
And free the woman's fall;
As Bruce's letters show his hand,
You'll find my hand in all;
And as his word is on record,
That he sent by his hand,
So mine you'll see alike to be,
And both together stand.
So learned men, no more contend,
Till you have seen all clear,
The Woman clothed with the Sun,
A wonder to you here:
So in amaze you all may gaze,
As Adam did at first,
To see the bone, to him unknown,
The woman there was placed.
The woe, you see, she brought on he,
And the first woe for man-
But how shall Satan now get free,
She casts her woe on him?
Then sure her woe on him must go,
And man must now be free?
If you do plead as Bruce has said,
Imputed all shall be
Unto you men, I tell you plain,
As jurymen appear,
And now the woman's cause maintain,
Then as a judge I'll clear.
For as a judge I'll surely come,
When you the cause do try,
And Satan shall receive his doom,
The woe for him is nigh.
So now you see the mystery,
Took from the Woman's name-
She brought her woe on Man and Me,
And both did bear the blame.
Though 'twas not she, I must tell ye,
Did cast the woe on man;
The serpent was condemned by she,
And there her woe must come."
Here follows the Answer of the Spirit to the Eighth Thought:-
"The seventh past, the law of God appeared,
As with the Law the seven I compared-
But mark, the eight does with the Gospel join
To bring the Revelations to mankind;
And as my angels did my servant warn,
Just so my Spirit he did not discern
Working within him deep in every thought;
For Satan's doom is placed in all he wrote.
For as the woman he by arts betrayed,
The sword of justice now is on his head,
And he's the Cain shall now receive his doom
From Abel's blood-and Abel's now in man.
For know of Sodom here his thoughts went deep-
'Tis Satan's doom, the flames on him shall break;
For now the mystery every one shall see-
The woman stands the pillar now for he;
That is, I tell you, for to catch him there;
The liquid fire shall on his head appear:
If she, for disobeying in one word,
Became a judgment-pillar of her Lord;
Then now my Judgments he shall surely feel,
If e'er he tempts my chosen, she doth seal:
And now a pillar she shall be for man,
Of salt to savour those can judge her hand.
Mark well the shadow did so strong appear,
When fire from heaven was on Gomorrah there:
But can you deem my judgment so severe,
To turn the woman to a pillar there,
Had I not set the type for the last days,
That all may see the justness of my ways?
For as the woman there he did condemn
For disobedience, and to salt she came;
Then now the woman I'll make salt for all,
And Satan now shall find his final fall;
If he goes on to disobey like she,
Then the same net is surely laid for he.
And now the woman shall like salt appear,
She'th sealed my people as I commanded her;
And if the tempter ever looks to them,
Then Sodom and Gomorrah's now his doom.
Was Lot my friend, and did I save the man?
Did he preserve my angels that to him came?
And did such judgments to his wife appear?
Mistaken men, you never knew me here-
I sent that judgment to the woman there,
That in the end she may like salt appear,
And now like Sodom he shall feel the flame,
If he goes on to tempt those that are sealed-
There's nothing done but now must be revealed:
And here in public stands the tempter's doom;
The woman's freed, and Satan's in her room-
If now he revels with the bowls of God,
Then Daniel's lions shall to him be showed,
For to destroy him hastily in the den-
Men I'll preserve that on Me now depend;
And as the lions he has made of men,
Then now as lions they are so become;
Their mouths are shut, and will not wound my fame,
Unless be those that with the tempter join;
And those like him will fall into his den;
Like Daniel's lions, they will all be slain;
That is, the lions did destroy them all,
And so my lions they on him shall fall.-
But all his thoughts, when I have all gone through,
Isaiah's prophecies, you all shall know,
Were deeply written on his mind and heart;
And 'twas my thoughts when I for man did smart,
That in the end he sure should see my reign;
I'd come to conquer, and the fight maintain,
Till all his Babels I'd throw to the ground-
Right is the judgment in the eighth thought found;
And now let four more as right appear,
And then the marriage ring to all I'll clear."
As in all probability a few certain passages of this work have, from the mystical manner in which they are given, puzzled some of my readers, I shall here add a clear explanation of them:-
The meaning of being sealed to the day of redemption, ( see pages 36 and 37.) - When I had printed 5,000 of my books, I was ordered to write to the Rev. Stanhope Bruce, and request him to get printed, book fashion, 1,000 copies of the letters I had sent to him and other worthy divines and spiritual good men; which being done, I was ordered to take each of my books, and one of his, (which was the perfect obedience of man and woman,) and seal them together; and it was said to me, this is the book that is sealed for man's redemption. Therefore not all the powers of earth and hell shall prevail against those that believe; for the book is sealed in heaven and earth; and what is bound on earth is bound in heaven; and Satan is bound by man on earth, and it is said to me he is bound in heaven. But these are mysteries concealed from the public till the time my writings are proved.
Now I shall inform my readers why the Lord permitted seven men to come down, and no more, to fulfil the laws. By the seven stars are meant the seven Spirits of God in seven men; for the Spirits of the Lord is but one Spirit. The five wise virgins in the New Testament, (which alludes to the five Evangelists,) being joined to the aforesaid seven men, make the twelve spoken of in the Revelations to bring in the twelve tribes of Israel.
Some men have written to me, that they are called of God to be chosen with me; I think proper to tell them here, that I know them not. None are chosen with me, but such as are revealed to me: and I am sorry to say many false prophets and false Christs are risen up in the world; for I have heard them, and have their letters to testify against them, wherein they assert, that they are the saviours of the world; so that the Gospel of Christ is fulfilling every way, and the end is at hand. But let no man judge himself the saviour of the world. The plan of salvation was laid at the Creation, and no prophet can arise but what is spoken of in Holy Writ. A prophet like Jonah was to appear; and he has appeared in Mr. Brothers; and therefore our Saviour said, "I was sick and in prison, and ye visited me not."
"And Joel's words must first come true
Before I make an end;
The Revelations to your view
Must make the learned bend.
The woman clothed with the sun
You'll find must first appear;
The Marriage of the Lamb must come;
My seal it must appear.
All this is done by my command,
Then judge your summer nigh;
For my elect shall ever stand,
And Abba, Father, cry!
'Tis spoke of thee, let all men see,
That such one must arise;
So if your Bibles plain you see,
There's none can blind your eyes.
For what impostor can take place,
If wisely you discern?
'Tis but a dark benighted race,
That fools can never harm."
Now I am come to the end, I shall clear up the beginning, to prevent my readers from stumbling, as I did when I was told that the harvest should be hurt, as they had brought a burden on me, it should fall on the land. I then thought within myself, will the Lord afflict a whole nation for the sake of a few. But I was answered, thou knowest not what man is; the hearts of all men are known unto me, and were thy writings public, thousands would mock as they do, for nothing but judgments will awaken your land. The truth of this I soon found to follow as soon as my writings were put in print. So let no one say, afflictions came for a few, they came as the hearts of most men were alike. And now I shall inform my readers what part of my writings have been fulfilled, since I began to publish in 1801, and what are hastening on.
Strange Effects of Faith:-
Fulfilled: See page 18, 53, 60, 84, 94, 126, 141, 143, 161, 162, 174, 197, 200
Hastening on: See page 8, 27, 29, 37, 46, 79, 87, 109, 120, 160, 172, 180
The last eight pages of the book of Letters are hastening on. The prophecies in that book are deeper than any man can imagine.
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Last updated 1st November 2009