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fess are fulfilled in a large manner, as I could easily show by letters of reference to the following confessions; but that I leave it to the reader to compare, and make his own remarks upon ; and now I shall proceed with this Scripture:-"God hath prepared for the wicked the instruments of death, He ordaineth His arrows against the persecutors.”—Psa. vii. 13.
First.—Priest Higginson,* after he has confessed to their degeneracy as aforesaid, in the beginning says, “Neither was New “England ever without some fatherly chastisements from God, † "showing that He is not fond of the formalities of any people " upon earth, but expects the realities of practical godliness ac“cording to our profession and engagement unto Him. Lament “our gradual degeneracy from that life and power of godliness “ that was in them, and the many provoking evils that are amongst “us, which have moved our God severely to witness against us, “ more than in our first times, by His lesser judgments going be“ fore, and His greater judgments following after. He shot off “His warning-pieces first, but His murdering-pieces have come “after them; insomuch as in these calamitous times, the changes
of wars of Europe have had such a malignant influence over us “ in America, that we are at this day greatly diminished and “ brought low through oppression, affliction, and sorrow."
Cotton Mather, Book I., chap. i., page 27.—"For now more “than twenty years the blasting strokes of heaven upon the secular “affairs of this country have been such as rather to abate than “enlarge the growth of it." Chap. i., page 29, “ The many “calamities, which have ever since been wasting of the country, “ have so nipped the growth of it that its latter progress hath held “no proportion with what was from the beginning. The calam“ities that have carried off the inhabitants of our several towns “have not been all of one sort; nor have all our towns had an “equal share in any sort; pestilential sicknesses have made fearful “ havoc in divers places, where the sound perhaps have not been enough to tend the sick, while others have not had one touch “ from that angel of death; and the sword hath cut off scores in ! sundry places, when others it may be have not lost a man by " that avenger."
* Allestation, page 2.
† Note,—This is that Priest Higginson, who called the light of Christ "a stinking vapour from hell," as aforesaid, page 242.
Chap. ii., page 31.-" There have been several years wherein “the terrible famine hath terribly stared the town in the face. “ The angel of death hath often shot the arrows of death into “ the midst of the town; the small-pox has especially four times “ been a great plague upon us. Never was any town under the “cope of heaven more liable to be laid in ashes, either through “the carelessness or wickedness of them that sleep in it." Chap. i., page 32 :-"Ten times hath the fire * made notable ruins “ among us, and our good servant been almost our master.”
Chap. i., page 38.—“Ah, Boston, thou hast seen the vanity of « all worldly possessions; one fatal morning, which laid fourscore “s of thy dwelling-houses and seventy of thy warehouses in a “ ruinous heap, not nineteen years ago, gave thee to read it in “ fiery characters; and an huge fleet of thy vessels, which they " would make if they were all together, that have miscarried in “the latę war, has given thee to read more of it.”
Chap. ii.--He tells how the “consuming wrath of God is every “ day on the young men," saying, “New England has been like a “ tottering house, the very foundations of it have been shaking ; “ but the house thus oversetting by the whirlwinds of the wrath “of God hath been like Job's house, 'it falls upon the young “ men, and they are dead.' The disasters on our young folks have “ been so multiplied, that there are few parents among us but “ what will go with wounded hearts down ynto their graves. « Their daily moans are, 'Ah, my son, cut off in his youth! My “son, my son !'"
Book V., chap. i., page 85.-“By land, some of the principal “grains, especially our wheat and our pease, fell under unaccount"able blast, from which we are not even unto this day delivered. “ And besides that constant frown of heaven upon our husband“ ry recurring every year, few years have passed wherein either
* This answers to George Wilson's Prophecy, page 192.
"worms or droughts, or some consuming disasters, have not be“ fallen the labour of the husbandman. By sea we were visited “ with multiplied shipwrecks; enemies preyed upon our vessels “ and our sailors; and the affairs of the merchants were clogged “ with losses abroad, or fires breaking forth in the chief seats of “ trade at home wasted their substance with yet more costly “ desolations. Nor did the land and the sea more proclaim the “controversy of our God against us than that other element of “the air, by the contagious vapours whereof several pestilential "sicknesses did sometimes become epidemical among us; yea, “the judgments of God, having done first the part of the moth “ upon us, proceeded then to do the part of a lion in lamentable “ wars, wherein the barbarous Indians cruelly butchered many “hundreds of our inhabitants, and scattered whole towns with “miserable ruins.” And reckoning up the sins that Cyprian counted the causes of the calamities that came on the primitive Christians, he says, chap. i., page 68, “ Truly if New England had “not abounded with the like offences, it may be supposed such “calamities had not befallen it. It intimated a more than ordinary “displeasure of God for some offences, when He proceeded so far "as to put over His poor people into the hands of tawny and “ bloody savages; and the whole army had cause to inquire into “their own rebellion, when they saw the Lord of hosts, with a “ dreadful decimation, taking off so many of our brethren by the “worst of executioners.* The serious people throughout the "country were awakened by these intimations of Divine dis“pleasure, to inquire into the causes and matters of the contro“ versy."
Chap. ii., page 87.--" The scourges of heaven were employed “ upon the Churches of New England for their miscarriages, and “they were sorely lashed with one blow after another." +
Chap. i., page 88.-" That God hath a controversy with His
Put into the hands of Indians, as bloody and savage as themselves. Does not this resemble judgment?
† So they sorely lashed our friend William Brend, &c. Is not this a resemblance?
“ New-England people is undeniable; the Lord having written “ His displeasure in dismal characters against us; though personal "afflictions do oftentimes come only or chiefly for probation, “ yet as to public judgments, it is not wont to be so, especially “when by a continued series of providence the Lord doth appear “and plead against His people, (2 Sam. xxi. 1,) as with us it hath s been from year to year.* Would the Lord have whetted His "glittering sword, and His hand have taken hold on judgment ? “ Would He have sent such a mortal contagion, like a besom of “ destruction, in the midst of us? Would He have said, 'Sword “ go through the land, and cut off man and beast'? Or would He " have kindled such devouring fires, and made such fearful deso"lations in the earth, if He had not been angry? It is not for “ nothing that the merciful God, who doth not willingly afflict "nor grieve the children of men, hath done all these things unto "us; yea, and sometimes with a cloud hath covered Himself, that “our prayer could not pass through."
Chap. i., page 90.—“Inordinate passions, sinful hearts, and " hatreds, and that among church-members themselves, who " abound with evil surmisings, uncharitable and unrighteous cen“sures, backbitings, hearing and telling tales. Moreover, the “sword, sickness, poverty, and almost all the judgments which " have been upon New England are mentioned in the Scripture “ as the woeful fruit of that sin; † chap. ii., and the Lord hath " threatened for that transgression, # to give His people into the hands of their enemies, and that their dead bodies should be
for meat unto the fowls of heaven, and to the beasts of the " earth; which judgments have been verified upon us."
Chap. i., page 91.-“ God, by a continued series of provi“dence for many years one after another, hath been blasting the “ fruits of the earth in a great measure, and this year more abun“ dantly,” &c. Chap. i., page 97.-" This poor land hath laboured under a “ long series of afflictions and calamities, whereby we have suf“fered successively in all our precious and pleasant things, and “ have seen the anger of the righteous God * against us expressed “in characters which ought to be as terrible as they must needs “ be visible unto us." · Chap. i., page 99.-" Being also awakened by the most heavy “judgments of heaven, under which the country hath been wel“tering and wasting for many latter years, to suspect lest in the “ hearts and lives of us in particular there may be found some of “those accursed thingst which have brought upon the land such “a long variety of sore calamity."
* There is cause, if you would see it. † Drinking healths. • | Promise-breaking.
Book VI., chap. i., page 14.-" New England hath been a “country signalized with mischiefs done by thunders as much “as perhaps most in the world. If things that are smitten “ by lightning were to be esteemed sacred, this were a sacred "country; rarely a summer passes without some strokes from the “ thunders on the persons, or houses, or cattle of our people : “to enumerate the instances of damages done by thunders in this “land, houses fired, cattle slain, trees pulled to pieces, rocks pul“ verized, bricks vitrified, and ships mortified, would be to fill a “ volume."
Chap. ii., page 28.-" It may be said about the young men of “New England as it was of old said about the young men of “ Israel, in Psa. Ixxviii. 63, 'The fire consumed their young men.' “Behold, O our young folks, the earth, and the sea, and the “pit, have been terribly swallowing up your brethren. Young “people, oh that you would suitably lay to heart the dreadful " judgments of God, which are consuming of your generation “among us. Behold, vain youths, behold how the wasting judg“ments of God have been upon you, till we cry out, The curse “has devoured our land, and few young men are left. Know “ you not that when our young men have been pressed into the !' wars, they have been but numbered for the slaughter, and
* The Lord is rightcous in all IIis ways, just in all His judgments.
† The accursed thing is among you to be sure; which, while ye hide, ye will not prosper.