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of hope-That He takes the blood and wounds of poor weak things to seal His truths.
"It cannot be expected that I shall be very formal in what I say, I being no scholar, nor yet old in experience. And besides, after I had received my sentence, I was taken out of a private room and put in the irons among bad company, except two days before this.
"The ground of my indictment was, 1. 'That I came against the King's forces, under the command of [Bruce of ] Earlsha!l, and fired upon them.' I declare, I intended not to resist, but being put to it in defence of the Gospel, and my own defence, I did resist them to my power.
"2. "That I had been with that party in the months of April, May, and June.' I was but two days with them, intending no other thing but to hear the Gospel, and for this I suffer; I bless the Lord, not as an evil doer, but for my duty; for ye know we are all bound in covenant, both Kirk and State, according to the Coronation-oath, and the Covenants were owned and sworn, both by the supreme magistrate, the nobles, gentry, and commons of all sorts. The Lord did wonderfully shine upon this land, so that it became the glory of the whole world; the fame of it went abroad, and was renowned through the nations. I have heard, that if a stranger of another kingdom had come into a church in this land, there was such a frame of spirit among the people, that the stranger would have thought that they had been all saints. The Church then was fair as the moon, clear as the sun, and terrible as an army with banners. But we have not been content with these days. Then the swearer was bound up from oaths, and the drunkard's throat ran dry; iniquity stopped her mouth. The Lord was with His people in those days; the Gospel was successful.
66 And yet I can say, there have been as great days of the Gospel in the west of Scotland in the foresaid months, in the fields, as were in Scotland, since it was Scotland. I am sure, the Gospel preached by Mr Richard Cameron especially was backed with the power and presence of Christ. As much of Christ and heaven were found, as finite creatures on earth were able to hold, yea, and more than they could hold; the streams of the living waters ran through among His people, at these meetings, like a flood upon the souls of many, who can witness, if they were called to it, that they would not have been afraid of ten thousands; 'The shout of a king was heard among them.'
"The fruits of it, I am hopeful, shall appear after this; all the troopers and dragoons in the three kingdoms, will never get that fire of love quenched that is kindled in the breasts of some in that country; it will never be quenched. It will not rot; the fathers will be telling the children of it, when they are old men, who are not taken away with the wrath that is coming on, to avenge the quarrel of a broken Covenant. They will be telling, that 'in the year 1680 there were as great days, as there are now; when there were prelates through these lands, upon the mountains up and down this west; it was then that I got on the zeal of God upon my soul.' And they shall say, 'who were they that preached in mosses and mountains, and not in the kirks nor houses? Did not all the godly ministers, when the apostate prelates were in the land, go out and witness and testify against them, with their lives in their hands?' And the fathers will say,' Know, my children, they had run well for a season; but they wearied, and yielded up the Church's liberties to a tyrant king, of the name of Charles; and he set up the prelates, and they made the land full of curates under them; and after that, some, that stayed off a while, then turned council-curates, and these council-curates beguiled the rest of them; and Erastianism was universal; but the moderate indulged in judgment would have silenced Mr Richard Cameron from preaching; but the Lord had said to him, "Go, and I will go with thee;" and so he was wonderfully helped. Indeed, the Lord countenanced him after that, and deserted them; and he died a martyr, and had his head set up upon a port [i.e., gateway], beside other three of his brethren, and many of these that wrote against him, and had him in derision, went away with a stink.' They will have this to say, and tell to the young ones yet unborn. 'The righteous man shall be had in everlasting remembrance.' Indeed, my friends, if any such be hearing me, I may say, truly a great man in our Israel fell at Airsmoss, the 22d of July 1680.
"And now, if I were set at liberty, with a provision that I were not found with Mr Donald Cargill (whom I pray the Lord may keep from sinning), I would yet again join with that persecuted party, although they should use me as they did that eminently worthy gentleman that suffered before us [Hackston of Rathillet].
"So I am not in the dark, how and for what I suffer. I am clear that I was in my duty, and I have peace in it since, and I grow still clearer in it; glory to His name; for it is true that after I got my indictment and received my sentence, I wanted the countenance
of God; for I never knew that the Lord loved me, but since that time; but I was never in the dark about the righteousness of the cause. I knew it would bear a suffering unto blood and death. And now, I am clear of my interest, and clear as to the grounds that I am laying down my life for this day. I could wish that every hair of my head were a life for His sake, and His persecuted cause.
"I die in the faith of the true Protestant religion, in doctrine, discipline, and worship, as it was received in the year 1638 and in the year 1649. I join my adherence to the government of this Church, as it was reformed from Popery, Prelacy, Erastianism, and Supremacy. And I join my cordial testimony to the Church's laws and statutes at that time, as she was governed by general assemblies, synods, presbyteries, visitations and sessions; and to days of humiliation for sins, solemn days of thanksgiving in receipt of mercies bestowed, and censures for trying out persons of erroneous principles, either ministers or private persons. I adhere to the Confession of Faith; the Larger and Shorter Catechisms; the solemn Acknowledgment of Sins and Engagement to Duties; the National and Solemn League and Covenant; and the protestation at St Johnstoun [i.e., Perth]. I join my testimony to, and approbation of these papers at Queensferry, the third of June 1680. I adhere to that faithful testimony at Rutherglen, the 29th of May 1679. I join my testimony to that last testimony or declaration, affixed upon the market-cross of Sanquhar, the 22d of June 1680. I witness my testimony to the late appearance at Airsmoss, the 22d of July 1680, where the Lord's worthies fell. Likewise I witness my testimony, and set to my seal against that horrid murder of that eminently worthy and famous godly gentleman, David Hackston of Rathillet. Likewise against all the bloodshed in fields, scaffolds, and the sea, these 19 years. And I enter my protestation against Popery, Quakerism, Supremacy, Erastianism, Indulgences first and last, and against arbitrary power over civil and ecclesiastic matters, further than the bounds appointed in the word of God.
"Likewise I witness my testimony against the pleaders for union, siding, joining, halving with usurpers of Christ's crown; silence in watchmen; and all their contrivances, impositions, instructions, or limitations they put upon the young men to be licentiate; prescribing a rule to them, to order their ministry so and so; their papers and pamphlets they have put out lately, to lead men over to that woful Indulgence, under the fair pretext of union; which is dreadful underhand dealing, to bring the people under the shadow of the Lord's ad
versaries. I enter my protestation against that national declaration put forth in the year 1661 [i.e., the act asserting the royal prerogative], and all their declarations since, and all their bonds and oaths imposed upon the Lord's people. Likewise, against the paying of the cess and militia money; and against their imprisonments, stigmatising, booting and burning with fire-matches, fining and confining, robbing and spoiling, banishment, oppression, rigour of masters of tolbooths.
"And because of that mistake, which they say in my indictmentthat Presbyterians, and I amongst the rest, had cast off all fear of God and are against all good order and civil law; I declare I adhere to kingly government, but not to perjury and tyranny, turning upside down Church and State, contrary to the word of God, our Covenants, and the laws of the nation, and contrary to the declaration at Dunfermline, the coronation-oath, and the acts of general assembly, and acts of Parliament ratifying Presbytery, and abjuring this prelatic hierarchy, which is now re-established, and Presbytery rescinded. And I bear my testimony against those that have been and yet are pleading for the favour (as they call it) of the Act of Indemnity, after the murdering of Mr King and Mr Kid, who were executed on the day that the proclamation was read over the Cross, the 14th day of August 1679; and against their Justiciary Courts, to ensnare and pannel the poor people of God in the west of Scotland.
"I shall draw to a close shortly; but I might, if I had time, enlarge further upon these. I will say only this to you, who are looking upon me this day, that my lot is hard, but I bless the Lord for it. The Captain of my salvation was made perfect through suffering. No man has wronged me by counsel or advice, for I am persuaded that the cause is the Lord Jesus Christ's cause, and He will own it. And whoso touches any of His people, touches the apple of His eye. For He sends none a warfare upon their own charges, and in His own time He will make inquisition for the blood of all His saints, because it is right precious in His sight. And when He makes inquisition after their blood, and searches them out that troubled His people, I would not be the king of Britain, nor a counsellor, prelate, nor malignant, for a world; and whatever I be, yet I am persuaded, that they have the blood of His dear saints in their skirts, which are this day under the altar, crying, 'How long, O Lord, holy and just, wilt Thou not avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?'
"You got Mr King's advice on the scaffold, to be more sparing of
shedding more blood; for within a short time he told you, he would be on equal terms with you, that judged him guilty of death; but that doth not warn the rulers of this kingdom. Do not think that I am quarrelling for the taking of my blood. No; it is love for your souls that obliges me to speak thus. Oh! what can be expected but that the Lord has His sword furbished for blood, and He will have a day of nobles' blood. The Lord has been smiting and wounding His Church and people, and blood has touched blood. Pentland hills hath touched Mr Guthrie's blood: and Bothwell touched Pentland, and the drowned in the sea touched Bothwell; and Airsmoss the drowned in the sea; and our blood toucheth that which was spilt the 22d of July last. Oh! that at last ye would be persuaded to desist and spill no more blood; Oh! that the Lord himself would stop the effusion of more innocent blood, if it may stand with His honour. But if any more may be for His honour and service, Lord, keep Thy people, when they are called to it, to say with David,' Here am I, let Him do with me as seemeth Him good!'
"I am also apprehensive, that the Lord hath a great sacrifice of the bodies of multitudes, and that He will give the flesh and blood of many to the fowls of the air; and He minds to give the fowls and birds a feast of flesh and blood. O Scotland, wilt thou never be made wise, until thou be betrayed into the hands of thine enemies? Truly I think, it is incredible, that this land will get leave to pass long, and not be swept with the besom of justice; the Lord is really angry with this land; for I know no person, no, not one, but He has a just ground of controversy with. It is astonishing to me to think on the sparing mercies of God towards these lands. For my part, I am glad that He calls me away after this manner, for which I desire with my soul to bless Him for His kindness to me, in taking this method and way with such a wretched sinner as I am, who deserve nothing but wrath, and only wrath. But glory to the riches of His free grace, 'who came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the chief!' He is a noble High Priest indeed!
"I must draw to a close: I entreat your patience a little, and I shall say but these three or four things shortly.
"1. I would entreat you, that are strangers to God, make haste and flee in unto God for your life; from this consideration, that all who had union and communion with God, and are now landed in glory, have died in the faith of it, that there are glorious days coming, and that the Lord will reckon with His enemies, and pay them liber