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life that gave forth scriptures; for the Pharisees, chief priests, and Jews had the scriptures, and read them every sabbath day among them, and they knew not righteousness to be righteousness, nor Jesus Christ the righteousness of God; neither did they know sin to be sin, for they crucified the Lord of life, that denied the light, the covenant of God, the covenant of light. So none know sin to be sin, but by the light which comes from the Lord Jesus Christ, that makes it manifest; and Abraham and Enoch knew sin before scripture was.
P. Again he saith, "Try their own hearts by scriptures.'
A. They that tried their hearts, it was by the spirit, of the Lord that searcheth them, which led them to speak forth scriptures; for before the scriptures were given forth, there was that in the heart to try it, which led all holy men of God to speak forth scriptures. If all men upon earth had the scriptures, and have not that which gave it forth, they have not that which will try the heart; for the Pharisees had the scriptures, and they could not try their own hearts, and so they turned against the light, as the world do now, that have the scriptures. For that is it which brings those to stand approved of God who try their hearts with it.
P. He saith, The overseers of the church are visible.'
A. That which did oversee, and made to be overseers, was the holy ghost, before the apostles deceased, which was invisible; but since the days of the apostles, men have made officers by the letter, and such are visible, therefore have all men come into divers forms, out of the unity, and have lost the bond of peace.
P. Likewise he saith, “That which is contained in the bible, is spirit and life.'
A. This is as much as to say, that spirit is in the letter, and life is in the letter. Now hadst thou said, that which is declared of is spirit and life, and the letter itself death, these words had been true; and that the life was in them that gave it forth, is sound. Now the people have it among them as a general word, that the bible is a history, or a treatise, or a catalogue, or the letter; these are the common words among professors and preachers. Now we say, the scriptures are the words of God, and a declaration of the prophets, Christ, and the apostles, and Christ is the word in whom they end; and that is agreeabk and according to scripture which cannot be broken, and sound words.
P. And the word was confirmed to them by signs.'
A. They that had the scriptures knew not the word; by signs and wonders they were declared, and signs and wonders were shown unto them that had the scriptures, from the word. Now them that had the scriptures, to whom the word had shown miracles, when they
desired a sign of the word, he told them, that no sign should be given to them but that of Jonas.
P. And they say thee and thou to a particular is a proper speech, but it is not a sin to say otherwise, and so not to give offence to Jew nor Gentile, but you is the national speech; and the devil said thou, and Cain said thou, and this was the bad men's language as well as the good.'
A. Though the devil and bad men got the form of true words, yet the form of sound words is to be held fast; and though Paul said, 'give no offence to Jew or Gentile, yet we do not find that Paul spoke out of the form of sound words, as you to one. And because it is a national form of speech, ye who are not come into the form of sound words, who have professed the scriptures, Christ, and the apostles, show that you and they never learned either, nor came into the practice of either. You to one is not righteous, and all unrighteousness is sin: for one to say, 'Thou Henry Hagar, art many men, wouldst not thou say they spoke unrighteously? Now judge thyself.
P. You call all men dead and carnal, and in the serpent's nature, in what form soever, if they differ from you.'
A. All that are not in the light that enlighteneth every man that cometh into the world, which is the way to the Father, differ from us. Such are dead, such are carnal, in the serpent's nature: for none come to the life, but who come to the light, in what form soever they be, and such as differ from us, differ from Christ, for none come from under the serpent's head and nature but they who come to the light.
P. Likewise he saith, But for a perfection in glory to be attained on this side the grave, I utterly disallow.'
A. We do believe thee; but a perfection in glory is attained to, while the saints are upon the earth, for they were changed from glory to glory. There is a perfection in the least glory, and that glory which the saints were changed from into glory, was not glorious, but as it was in the perfection in the least degree or measure as it is in itself. And so for the rest of thy lies and slanders, and unsavoury expressions, which are not worth mentioning, they will clothe thyself and not cover thy shame, but make it manifest. They shall be thy own wounds in the day of thy indignation: the witness within thee shall answer me, and thy silence had been better, than to have uttered forth thy folly to the nation. And whereas thou speakest of the church, that is a mystery to thee, which is the pillar and ground of truth; but men have gathered together a form in the apostacy, and the seed in the grave, since the days of the apostles. But now is the seed risen, which treadeth such out and down that are gathered together in the words of scriptures, but out of the spirit that they were
in that gave it forth. And that is the seed which all the promises are to; he doth not say it is to the visible church, but to the seed, and who are of the seed are of the church of Christ, which is the pillar and ground of truth. And so it is not the running up and down the scrip tures, from place to place, and bringing people chapter and verse, telling people what the prophets said and did, and what the apostles said and did, and so to be approved of in the sight of men, but such are approved of in the sight of God, that are in the life that they were in that gave forth scriptures, and are in unity with the saints that gave them forth, with Christ the substance of them, and with God.
P. He saith, An unlearned question to ask, whether your baptizers cast out devils, and drink any deadly thing and it not hurt you? and whether the house where you meet was ever shaken? and where he did give the holy ghost to you?'
A. This shows that you are not believers, nor in the power that the apostles were in. And as for your saying the apostles said, that wicked men should grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived: since the days of the apostles, who saw those things come up, those wicked men being deceived and deceiving,' now since their days it is manifest, that they have grown worse and worse, till they have grown all into heaps, and killed one another about religion; the whole Christendom can witness it. Such as have had the form of godliness but denied the power, have been out of the power and life that gave forth the scriptures, and out of the bond of peace, in the poison, one poisoning another, and out of the holy ghost that gave forth scriptures, and out of the healing, and the belief that casts out devils, and the devil, the murderer. But he hath been your teacher to murder one another about your religion, which did not Christ teach, but to love enemies, and to save men's lives.
Thomas Leadger's book, called A discourse,' his principles in il
P. He saith, Such are in an error that set up a light within above the scripture, or equal with the scripture, and know no Christ but Christ within.
A. The light, Christ, by which all things were made and created, glorified with the Father before the world began, which the scripture testifies of, is above the scripture, before the scripture was. They that are not in this Christ within,' are reprobates, in which
the scripture ends and which it testifies of; and so it is Christ, the same to-day, yesterday, and for ever, that the saints come to wit
ness within them, not another Christ, neither many Christs. And i they that profess a Christ without them, that have a Christ with
out them, and another Christ within them, here are two; for if it be not the same Christ that ended all types, and figures, and shadows; if it be not him that is within, they have not the possession, the substance, nor the comfort of the true Christ. But they who have not
Christ, the end of the types, shadows, and figures, in them, are among | antichrists and false christs; and they that have the form of godliness can confess a Christ without them, and not within them.,
P. Again he saith, “ The saints have a glorious light within them, but imperfect.' And it is an error to say they have an infallible light within them, that they must follow, which will show them all things.' And to judge of scripture that it must be fulfilled in them.' And
these are they that are brought up in dark places of the earth, that are as Sauls that go to the witch and not to the law and testimony.'
A. None come to the law and to the testimony, though they have the Old and New Testament, but those who come to the light in them, for the law is the light, and those who come to the spirit within them, which is the spirit of prophecy; and all that go from this, go into dark places of the earth, and such are they that go in the path of Saul, such spirits as go from the light within them, and the spirit that is the testimony of Jesus, and the light. And the glorious light of the saints which they are enlightened withal is Christ, which is perfect, and they are changed from glory to glory; and so the light which thou sayst the saints are in, and yet not perfect, and yet glorious! mind thy words, consider thy measure, thy judgment. The infallible light which every one that comes into the world is enlightened with, is the leader of the people, and the light they are to follow, and it is the way to the Father, out of the way from the Father that is in the first Adam, in the transgression; which light is Christ the second Adam, that every man that comes into the world is enlightened with. And they who follow this, and believe in it, and walk in it, abide not in darkness, but have the light of life. And the light within, and the spirit of God within, that gave forth the scripture, is the trial of the scripture of truth; for men without that may wrest the words, and wrong translate them. So the light within, the spirit of God, is the judge of the scriptures and knows scripture, which gave it forth, and is the rule, and ruled and led them to speak them forth, and is the rule that leads them to open them again, and to lead into all truth, as saith Christ.
P. He saith, “That which they set up above the scriptures is heathenish; and the scriptures are the ground of faith, without them faith
cannot act; and faith hath no bottom to rest upon but scripture; and scripture is more than faith, the sure word of prophecy, the balm oi the conscience; it satisfies doubts, heals wounds, discerns the thoughts!
A. The Pharisees and the chief priests, were not healed, except they came to Christ; they found no rest for their souls; though they had the scripture, yet they came not to Christ the light, which was before the scripture was given forth. The Pharisees had the scriptures, but they had not faith; they stood against the author and the ground of it Christ. The Pharisees had the scriptures, but it was Christ and God that showed them their thoughts; so the scripture knew not their thoughts, but who are in the spirit that gave forth the scriptures, it shows men's thoughts. Enoch and Abraham had faith, and had not scripture. All are heathens that are not in the light which was before scripture was written, though they have all the scripture. And the holy men of God acted in the faith, in obedience to it, before the scripture was given forth, and they were all in the faith that gave forth the scripture, and they did not act as from the scripture, but from the spirit of whom they had learned, who is the author of faith which the just live by, and God and Christ, the substance of the scripture.
P. And the scripture is an infallible rule of worship.'
A. The Jews and Pharisees had the scriptures, and the apostates since the days of the apostles have had the scriptures, and have been out of the life that gave them forth; they want the rule, which is the spirit, in which God the father of spirits is worshipped, and that was the rule which all the holy men of God were led by to give forth scripture, in which they worshipped God; for the Pharisees had the scriptures and not the spirit which gave them forth, that worshipped they did not know what. They wanted the rule, the spirit of God that was in them that gave forth the scriptures, in which they should have worshipped God; so saw not the substance, the ground of faith, and author of faith, Christ Jesus.
P. They will not put off their hats; they write thee and thou one to another; they will not say master.'
A. The honour of the hat, the putting of it off, is an earthly honour of the earthly Adam in the fall, in the transgression, which Christ the second Adam, the Lord from heaven, not of the earthly, comes t3 redeem man out of; he receives it not, he will have none of it, but the honour that comes from above, and cometh to stain the honour that is from below, and sees it a mark of earthly Adam in the transgression, and not of the second, the heavenly. And as for thee and thou, you to a number, and thou to a singular, they who stumble at this, show they have neither learned accidence nor bible; so are short of the spirit that spoke the sound words that cannot be condemned, and speaks pro