TO THE Jewish and Hebrew NATION
WHO are scattered up and down the face of the earth, through their rebellion against the Lord, and for the breaking of his commandments, and statutes which he commanded them by his servant Moses, which the Lord sent to bring their forefathers out of Egypt. Therefore now hearken O Israel unto the statutes and judgments which I teach you, for to do them, that you may live. Your eyes have seen what the Lord did because of Baalpeor. For all the men that followed Baalpeor, the Lord your God has destroyed them from among you, Deu 4:1,3.
When Israel was a child, then I loved him, and called my son out of Egypt, said the Lord, Hos 11:1. David said, You have brought a vine out of Egypt. you have cast out the heathen, and planted it. You prepare room before it, and did cause it to take deep root, and it filled the land, Psa 80:8-9. But now O Israel, is that fulfilled upon you, which Moses the servant of the Lord foretold of you, who was sent to bring Israel out of Egypt, who said, When you shall beget children, and children’s children; and shall have remained long in the land, and shall corrupt yourselves, and make a graven image, or the likeness of anything, and shall do evil in the sight of the Lord your God, to provoke him to anger, I call heaven and earth to witness against you this day; that you shall soon utterly perish from off the Land whereon you go over Jordan to possess it. You shall not prolong your days upon it, but shall utterly be destroyed. And the Lord shall scatter you among the nations, and you shall be few in number among the heathen, wherever the Lord shall lead you, and there you shall serve Gods, the work of men’s hands, wood and stone, which neither see nor hear, nor eat, nor smell; which is now fulfilled upon you this day, Deu 4:25-28. Yet the Lord testified against Israel, and against Judah, by all the prophets, and by all the seers, saying, turn you from your evil ways, and keep my commandments, and my statutes, according to all the Law which I commanded your fathers, and which I sent to you by my servants the prophets; notwithstanding they would not hear, but hardened their necks, like to the necks of their fathers, that did not believe in the Lord their God; but rejected his statutes, and his covenant, 2 Kin 17:13-15.
Therefore the Lord rejected Israel, and afflicted them, and delivered them into the hand of the spoilers, (for he rent Israel from the house of David and Solomon), and they made Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, king. So the Lord has removed Israel out of his sight, 2 Kin 17:20-23, as he said by his servants the prophets. For said the Lord unto Jeremiah: Though Moses and Samuel stood before me, yet my mind could not be towards this people, cast them out of my sight, and let them go forth, Jer 15:1. So captive into Babylon were they carried, and cast out from the sight and presence of the Lord, and turned into darkness, where you are. Though the Lord has often called you by his servants the prophets, as he did by Jeremiah, when he made him go down to the potters house, and showed him the vessel that was made of clay, was marred in the hand of the potter, so he made it again another vessel, as it seemed good to the potter. Then the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah, saying, Oh House of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter, said the Lord, Behold as the clay is in the potter's hand; so are you in my hand, Oh house of Israel, as you may read Jeremiah, throughout the whole Chapter 18.
Therefore hear the word of the Lord, you who are called Manasseh Ben Israel, (who are come into this English nation, with all the rest of your brethren), which is a land of gathering, where the Lord God is fulfilling his promise, who has said, for a small moment have I forsaken you, but with great mercy will I gather you, Isa 54:7-8. And this is fulfilling in our day.* And the rod which Isaiah prophesied of, which should come forth out of the stem of Jesse, (namely, the Messiah), and the branch that grows out of his roots, and the Spirit of the Lord rests upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and of might, the spirit of knowledge, and of the fear of the Lord, Isaiah 11. With righteousness does he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth. And he does smite the Earth with the Rod of his Mouth, and with the breath of his Lips does he slay the wicked, and he is set up an ensign for the nations, and he assembles the outcasts of Israel, and gathers together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the Earth. This is fulfilling in this our day, in this nation; glory and praises be to the living and faithful God for evermore. Therefore you who from the Lord is turned and gone astray, see from where you are fallen, from the living and true God, are you driven and separated. If you will return Oh Israel said the Lord, return unto me; and if you will put away your abominations from before me; you shall not remove; and you shall swear, that the Lord lives in truth, in judgment, and in righteousness, the nations shall bless themselves in him, and in him shall they glory, Jer. 4:1-2.
But now the vision of Isaiah the son of Amos, which he saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem, in the days of Uziah, Jotham, Abaz and Hezekiah Kings of Judah, is fulfilled upon you, hear Oh heavens, and give ear Oh earth, for the Lord has spoken; I have nourished and brought up children, and they have rebelled against me. The ox knows his owner, and the ass his master's crib, but Israel does not know, my people do not consider, Isa 1:1-3. To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices unto me, said the Lord, I am full of burnt offerings of rams, and the fat of beasts, and I delight not in the blood of bullocks, or of lambs, or of he goats. When you come before me, who has required this at your hands, to tread my courts; bring no more vain oblations; incense is an abomination unto me; your new moons, and Sabbaths, and calling of assemblies, I cannot away with it, it is iniquity, even your solemn meetings, and your appointed feasts my soul hates, they are a trouble unto me, I am weary to bear them: and when you spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you; yes, when you make many prayers, I will not hear; your hands are full of blood, Isa 1:11-15. Here the Lord God testifies against you, and the abomination of your worship; and here you are found worshipping the imagination of your own hearts, which the Lord God declares against. This is fulfilled upon you this day; and here you are separated from the true and living God and his worship, and know him not so much as the ox knows his owner, or the ass his master's crib. Therefore cease from your abomination, and turn to the living God, and him dread, and him fear, who is the dread of all nations, at whose presence the mountains shall melt, and the hills be removed, and the rocks rent, who is a consuming fire to the wicked; now is he risen who shakes terribly the earth, and brings down all the loftiness of man, and the haughtiness of men, and the Lord alone is to be exalted in this his day. Therefore hearken diligently that your souls may live; and give not your money, for that which is not bread, nor your labour for that which perishes; but hearken to the pure Law of God in your hearts, which Moses told Israel, should be in their heart.
If you will hearken to the voice of the Lord your God, to keep his commandments and his statutes, which are written in this book of the Law, and if you turn unto the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, for this commandment which I command you this day, is not hidden from you, neither is it far off. It is not in heaven, that you should say, who shall go up for us to heaven, and bring it unto us, that we may hear it, and do it; neither is beyond the sea, that you should say, who shall go over the sea for us, and bring it unto us, that we may hear it, and do it; but the Word is very near unto you, in your mouth, and in your heart, that you may do it, Deu 30:10-14.
Therefore return to the Law and to the testimony, if they speak not according to this word, it is because no light is in them, Isa 8:20, so that you may witness this scripture fulfilled: the people that walked in darkness have seen a great light, those who dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them, has the light shined, Isa. 9:2. Moses the servant of the Lord said: The Lord your God will raise unto you a prophet from the midst of your brethren, unto him shall you hearken. And the Lord said unto me, I will raise them up a prophet like unto you; and will put my words into his mouth, and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him; and it shall come to pass, that whosoever will not hearken unto my words which he shall speak in my name, I will require it of him. Deu 1:15,19. Therefore as you love your eternal peace, hearken to the prophet which the Lord has raised, who said go not forth, but said, the word is near in your mouth, and in your heart, as Moses did. And if ever you come to know the true and living God, you must hearken to this prophet which calls your minds to within, for by this does the living God teach his people himself. But this Law, and this testimony has been sealed up from you, according as Isaiah prophesied, Isa. 8:16. Therefore has he been for a stone of stumbling, for a rock of offence, to both the houses of Israel, for a gin and for a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem. And therefore have many among you stumbled and fallen, and been broken, and snared and taken. David said: The mouth of the righteous speaks wisdom, and his tongue talks of judgment; the Law of God is in his heart, none of his steps shall slide, Psa 37:30-31. Blessed is the man that walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, but his delight is in the Law of the Lord, and in his Law does he meditate day and night, Psa. 1:1-2. The Law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple, Psa 19:7. So to the sure Law and testimony turn your minds, that it may be unto you, a lamp unto your feet, and a light unto your paths. The days have come, which the Prophet Jeremiah prophesied of: Behold, the days come, said the Lord, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah; not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers, in the days that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, which my covenant they broke, although I was an husband unto them, said the Lord. But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel, after those days, said the Lord, I will put my Law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. And they shall teach no more every man his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, 'know the Lord,' for they shall all know me, from the least even unto the greatest of them, said the Lord, Jer 31:31-34. And the Lord, by the prophet Ezekiel said: Therefore will I save my flock, and they shall no more be a prey; and I will set up one shepherd over them, and he shall feed them, even my servant David, and he shall be their shepherd. I the Lord will be their God, and my servant David a praise among them, I the Lord have spoken it, Ezek 34:22-24. The Lord said by Isaiah the prophet: Because you have said, 'We have made a covenant with death, and with hell we are at agreement:' when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, it shall not come unto us; for we have made lies our refuge, and under falsehood have we hid ourselves.' Isa 28:15
Therefore thus said the Lord God, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation, a stone, a tried stone, a precious cornerstone, a sure foundation; he that believes shall not make haste. Judgment also will he lay to the line, and righteousness to the plummet. And the hail shall sweep away the refuge of lies, and the waters shall overflow the hiding place, and your covenant with death shall be disannulled, and your agreement with hell shall not stand, when the overflowing scourge shall pass through; then shall you be trodden down by it, Isa 28:16-18. Therefore now, that you may escape the overflowing scourge, and is hidden in the day of the Lord's fierce wrath; turn to the Lord God, who calls you, who waits to be gracious to you, and give over making a covenant with hell and death, and of making lies your refuge; for that will not stand in this the day of the Lord's pure appearing. For the tried stone is risen, the sure foundation, who lays judgment to the line, and righteousness to the plummet; and nothing will be accepted of him, but that which is pure and just. Therefore to the pure Light and Law in the inward parts turn your minds, which shows you your evil deeds, and makes manifest sin and evil, and shows you the thoughts of your hearts, (which are vain), that lodges in you. This will rip you up, and lay you open, and make all the deceit of your heart appear, that which none can accuse you of, which you act in secret, this will reprove, this teaches in secret, and is always present, when you are upon your beds; this is present, wherever you go, or whatever you are about, from this you cannot flee. This is the voice which calls behind you, This is the Way, walk in it. Here you will come to drink of the still waters of Shiloh, which go softly, which the Lord spoke of to Isaiah the prophet, saying, For as much as this people refuses the waters of Shiloh which goes softly, and rejoice in Rezin, and Remalias Son. Now therefore the Lord brings upon them the waters strong and many, even the King of Assyria, Isa 8:6-7. And David said, You have set our iniquities before you, and our secret sins in the Light of your countenance, Psa 90:8. And again he said, He that dwells in the secret place of the most high, shall abide under the shadow of the almighty, Psa 91:1. So here is your way to know the living God, if ever you know him to your peace; and no other way under heaven shall any one ever know him by. Therefore now, to the Law and to the testimony written in your hearts, the Word which is near, in the heart, which Moses speaks of; here keep the fast to the Lord. For this is the fast which he has chosen, to loose the Bonds of Wickedness, and to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that you break every yoke. Then shall your Light break forth as the morning, and your health shall spring forth speedily; and your righteousness shall go before you, and the Glory of the Lord shall be your reward. And if you draw out your soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall your Light arise in obscurity, and your darkness be as the noonday. And the Lord shall guide you continually, and satisfy your soul in drought, and make fat your bones. And you shall be like a watered garden, and like a spring, whose waters fail not, Isa 58:6-11.
Therefore Israel, arise and shine, for your Light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon you; for behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people. But the glory of the Lord shall rise upon you, Isa 60:1-2. So this is the day of your Visitation. Awake, awake, stand up, O Jerusalem, which have drunk at the hand of the Lord the cup of his fury, you have drunken the dregs of the cup of trembling, and wrung them out. And yet there is none to guide you among all the sons which you have brought forth, neither is there any that takes you by your hand, of all the sons that you have brought up, Isa 51:17-18. And the Lord has seen this, and wondered that there is no intercessor. Therefore has his arm brought salvation unto you, and his righteousness has sustained you. And the redeemer is come to Zion, and unto them that turn from transgression in Jacob, said the Lord. As for me, this is my covenant with them, said the Lord, my Spirit which is upon you, and my Words which I have put in your mouth, shall not depart out of your mouth, nor out of the mouth of your seed, nor out of the mouth of your seed's seed, said the Lord, from henceforth for evermore, Isa 59:20-21.
Thus said the Lord, Where is the bill of your mother's divorcement, whom I have put away? or to which of my creditors is it to whom I sold you? Behold, for your iniquities have you sold yourselves, and for your transgression is your mother put away. Wherefore, when I called, there was none to answer. Is my hand shortened at all, that it cannot redeem? or have I not power to deliver? Behold, at my rebuke, I dry up the sea, and make the rivers a wilderness. I clothe heavens with blackness, and make sackcloth your covering. The Lord has given me the tongue of the learned, that I should know how to speak a Word in season to him that is weary, Isa 50:1-4. Thus said the Lord, Behold my Servant, whom I uphold, mine elect in whom my soul delights; I have put my Spirit upon him, (viz. the Messiah). He shall bring forth judgment to the gentiles. A bruised reed shall he not break, and the smoking flax shall he not quench. He shall bring forth judgment unto truth; he shall not fail, nor be discouraged, till he has set judgment in the earth; and the isles shall wait for his Law, Isa 42:1-4.
Therefore to this pure Law turn your minds, and wait; for this is He which brings salvation unto Jews and gentiles. The elect obtains deliverance. I will bring forth a seed out of Jacob, and out of Judah an inheritor of my mountain, and mine elect shall inherit it, and my servants shall dwell there. They shall not build, and another inhabit; they shall not plant, and another eat. For as the days of a tree, are the days of my people, and mine elect shall long enjoy the work of their hands, Isa65:9 and 65:22. Therefore fear the Lord God, and give over looking outward; for now the Lord is gone forth as a mighty man, and his jealousy is stirring up like a man of war. And now is he roaring against his enemies. I have long held my peace, said the Lord; I have been still, and refrained my self. Now will I cry like a travailing woman. I will destroy and devour at once, and I will make waste mountains and hills, and dry up all their herbs; and I will make the rivers islands, and I will dry up all their pools; and I will bring the blind by a way that they know not, and I will lead them in paths that they have not known, and I will make darkness light before them, and crooked things strait. And these things will I do unto them, and not forsake them. And they shall be turned back, they shall be greatly ashamed, that trust in graven images; that say to the molten Images, You are our gods. Hear you deaf, and look you blind, that you may see. Isa 42:13-20. The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, (spoken of the Messiah ) because the Lord has appointed me to preach good tidings to the meek, he has sent me to bind up the broken-hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound, to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God: and to comfort all that mourn, to appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give them beauty for ashes, and the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness, that they might be called the trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified. Isa 61:1-3
And now is the Lord God planting, and now is he gathering unto his sheepfold, where there is but one shepherd. The Lord is well-pleased for his righteousness sake; and now is he magnifying his righteous Law, and making it honorable; and fulfilling his promise, and teaching his people himself, by the pure Law written in the heart, Jer 31:33-34.
Therefore to this Law turn your minds, to the pure Light in your consciences, that you may come to witness the Word of the Lord fulfilled, that came to Jeremiah. For lo, the days come, said the Lord, that I will bring again the captivity of my people Israel and Judah, said the Lord, and I will cause them to return to the land which I gave to their Fathers, and they shall possess it. And these are the Words which the Lord spoke concerning Israel, and concerning Judah. For thus said the Lord, We have heard a voice of trembling, of fear, and not of peace. Ask you now, and see whether a man does travail with child. Wherefore do I see every man with his hands on his loins, as a woman in travail, and all faces are turned into paleness? Alas, for that day is great, so that none is like it. It is even the time of Jacob's trouble, but he shall be saved out of it. For it shall come to pass in that day, said the Lord of hosts, that I will break his yoke from off your neck, and will burst your bonds; and strangers shall no more serve themselves of him, but they shall serve the Lord their God, and David their King, whom I will raise up unto them, Jer 30:3-9.
Behold, the days come, said the Lord, that I will raise unto David a righteous branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth; and in his days, Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely. And this is his name whereby he shall be called, the Lord Our Righteousness, Jer 23:5-6.
Go and proclaim these words towards the North, and say, return, you backsliding Israel, said the Lord, and I will not cause mine anger to fall upon you; for I am merciful, said the Lord, and will not keep anger for ever, Jer 3:12.
And now that the Lord calls you, turn to the Lord, that you may come to say, Surely after that I was turned, I repented, and after that I was instructed, I smote upon my thigh, I was ashamed, yes even confounded, because I did bear the reproach of my youth, Jer 31:19, Deu 30. Return, you backsliding children, and I will heal your backsliding, said the Lord. Behold, we come unto you, for you art the Lord our God. Truly in vain is salvation hoped for, from the hills, and from the multitude of mountains. Truly the Lord our God is the salvation of Israel. And now is the Lord risen, and his Light is shining; and the gentiles come to his Light, and the Kings to the brightness of his rising; they all gather themselves together, they come together, your sons shall come from far, and your daughters shall be nursed at your side. Isa 60:3-4. The eyes of the blind shall be opened, the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped; then shall the lame man leap as a hart, and the tongue of the dumb sing. For in the wilderness shall waters break out, and streams in the desert, and the parched ground shall become a pool, and the thirsty land, springs of water; and the habitation of dragons, where each lay, shall be grass, with reeds and rushes; and an high way shall be there, and a way that shall be called a way of holiness; the unclean shall not pass over it, but it shall be for those: the way-faring men, though fools, shall not err therein, Isa 35:5-8. Bring forth the blind people that have eyes, and the deaf that have ears. Let all the nations be gathered together, and let the people be assembled; who among them can declare this, and show us former things? let them bring forth their witnesses, that they may be justified; or let them hear and say it is truth, Isa 43:8-9. Therefore turn to the Lord, that your deaf ears may hear, your blind eyes see, and the lame may leap like an hart, and the dumb sing. And you, who are erred and gone astray from the Lord, return, that you may know your habitation to be in the Lord. For Cain, who went from the command of the Lord, was driven out that day from the face of the Lord, and a fugitive and a vagabond he is, and knows no habitation. And so is all the untoward generation, who from the Lord God is turned. I taught Ephraim also to go, said the Lord, taking them by their arms, but they knew not that I healed them. I drew them with the cords of a man, and with the bands of Love. And I was to them, as those who take off the yoke that laid on their jaws, and I laid meat unto them, Hos 11:3-4.
Now the free grace of the everlasting God is offered to you this day; and therefore return to the pure Light, and Law written in the heart, which is spiritual, just and good, and by that let your minds be guided and led up to God, who is Light, who has said, I will be a Light to Israel. Therefore shall the Lord, the Lord of Hosts, send among the fat ones leanness, and under his glory he shall kindle a burning, like unto the burning of a fire. And the Light of Israel shall be for a fire, and his Holy One for a flame, and it shall burn and devour his thorns and his briars in one day, Isa 10:16-17. And this scripture you shall witness fulfilled; and therefore repent, and return speedily to the Light, which now shines in your consciences, which shows your sin and evil, which will turn your minds toward the living God, and lead you into the way of truth. And by no other way under heaven shall you ever know the true and living God; for the time is come, which Isaiah prophesied of: Isa 2:2-3. And it shall come to pass in the last days, said the Lord, that the mountain of the Lord's house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills, and all the nations shall flow unto it. And many people shall go and say, Come you and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the House of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths, for out of Zion shall go forth the Law, and the Word of the Lord from Jerusalem.
Therefore to the Law that goes from Zion, which the Lord God has written in the heart; and to the Word that goes from Jerusalem, which is near, in the heart, and in the mouth; for the Lord is exalted, he dwells on high, he has filled Zion with judgment and righteousness, Isa 33:5. Zion shall be redeemed with judgment, and her converts with righteousness, Isa 1:27.
For there shall be a day, that the watchmen upon mount Ephraim shall cry, Arise you, and let us go up to Zion, unto the Lord our God, Jer 31:6. In those days, and in that time, said the Lord, the children of Israel shall come, they and the children of Judah together, going and weeping, they shall go and seek the Lord their God, they shall ask the way to Zion, with their faces in that direction; saying, come, and let us join ourselves to the Lord, in a perpetual covenant that shall not be forgotten, Jer 50:4-5. Now, if you will know the way to Zion, turn your faces towards that place, and turn your minds to that of God, which joins to the Lord; which calls your minds in, out of the visible and outward things, unto that which is inward and invisible. For God is an invisible God, and no mortal eye can behold him; and that eye, which sees God, is invisible; and that ear that hears God, is invisible, and that which worships God, is invisible; and the House where the Lord God is worshipped, is invisible. And this you shall witness to be the way to Zion, if ever you know it, or find it. Thus said the Lord, the heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool, where is the house that you will build unto me? where is the place of my rest? for all these things has my hand made; and all these things has been, said the Lord. But to this man will I look, even to him that is poor, and of a contrite Spirit, and trembles at my word, Isa 66:1-2.
Now here you may see where the Lord will be worshipped, not in outward temples, or outward synagogues made with hands; But the time is come, that the Lord will be worshipped in Spirit, in the inward man. Therefore cease from your outward temples and synagogues, for the day is come, that the idols of silver and gold, which every one has made for himself to worship, they must be cast to the moles, and to the bats. Isa 2:20.Their Land also is full of idols, they worship the work of their own hands, that which their own fingers have made, Isa 2:8. And he will cause their idols utterly to abolish; for the fear of the Lord is risen, and the glory of his majesty, he who shakes terribly the earth is come; for the voice of them that flee, and escape out of the land of Babylon, does declare in Zion, the vengeance of the Lord our God, the vengeance of his temple. For Babylon is to be destroyed by the vengeance of the Lord, and of his temple. Read the 50th, and the 51st Chapters of Jeremiah, and there you may read at large the controversy that the Lord has with Babylon, and her idols. A voice of noise from the city, a voice from the temple, a voice of the Lord, that renders recompense to his enemies also, Isa 66:6.
And God said unto Abraham, you shall keep my covenant, you and your seed after you, in their generations, and you shall circumcise the flesh of your foreskin, (which was a type of the inward or heart), and it shall be a token of the covenant between me, and you, Gen17:11. And Moses the servant of the Lord said. And now, Oh Israel, what does the Lord your God require of you, but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in his ways, and to love him, and to serve the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, to keep the commandments of the Lord, and his statutes which I command you this day for your good. Behold the heaven, and the heaven of heavens is the Lords, your God, the earth also, with all that therein is, only the Lord had a delight in your fathers to love them, and he chose their Seed after them, even you above all people, as it is this day. Circumcise therefore the foreskin of your heart, and be no more stiff necked, for the Lord your God, is God of Gods, and Lord of Lords, a great God and mighty, and a terrible, which regards not persons, nor takes reward, Deut 10:12-17.
And again, when Moses prophesied of the return of the captivity, Deut. 30. from the 1st, to the 6th. And he said, the Lord your God will circumcise your heart, and the heart of your seed to love the Lord your God, with all your heart, and with all your soul, that you may live. For thus said the Lord to the men of Judah and Jerusalem, Break up your fallow ground, and sow not among thorns. Circumcise yourselves to the Lord, and take away the foreskin of your hearts you men of Judah, and inhabitants of Jerusalem, least my fury come forth like fire, and burn that none can quench it; because of the evil of your doings. Jer 4:3-4. This circumcision is not outward; therefore to that Spirit which circumcises the heart, turn your minds, to that which rents the heart, and plows up the fallow ground, and washes away the filth of sin, and takes away the hardness of your hearts. David cried, wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin, purge me, and I shall be clean, wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow, Psa 51. O Jerusalem, wash your heart from wickedness, that you may be saved, how long shall your vain thoughts lodge within you? Jer 4:14. And it shall come to pass, that he that is left in Zion, and he that remains in Jerusalem, shall be called holy, even every one that is written among the living in Jerusalem. When the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughter of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof, by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of burning. And this is the circumcision, this plows up the fallow-ground of the heart.
Therefore to that which circumcises the heart, turn your minds to within; for that is not circumcision which is outward, but that is circumcision which is of the heart. And we are the circumcision, who worship God in the Spirit, and have no confidence in the flesh; and this, if ever you know the true and living God, you shall bear testimony to, to be truth and love to your souls.
Therefore to the pure Law of God written in the inward parts turn your minds, that so you may come to love the Lord with all your heart, and be circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, which purges away the filth of flesh and spirit, and tenders your heart, and changes your natures; for this is that which avails, even the new Creature.
And for your Sabbaths, which you look upon to be outward, this likewise you must come to know to be within; for them that escape from the Sword, which have been carried away unto Babylon, must know, their rest, and their dwelling-place to be in the Lord. For the Lord God of your Fathers has sent unto you his messengers, rising up betimes, because he had compassion on you, and on his dwelling place. But you have mocked the messengers of God, and despised his words, and abused his prophets, until the wrath of God rose against you. Therefore has he brought upon you the King of the Chaldeans, who has slain the young men in the house of your sanctuary, and has had no compassion. And all the vessels of the House of God, and they have burnt the house of God, and broken down the walls of Jerusalem, and all to fulfill the word of the Lord, until the land had enjoyed her Sabbaths. For as long as she lay desolate, she kept Sabbaths, as you may read in 2 King 11. And now is the time come, and accomplished, that your enemies are to be punished, and you may come to know your Sabbath, and your rest in the Lord. For lo, the days come, said the Lord, that I will bring again the captivity of my people Israel, and Judah, and I will cause them to return to the land that I gave to your forefathers, and they shall possess it. For I know the thoughts that I think to you, said the Lord, even the thoughts of peace. Then shall you call upon me, and you shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you, and you shall seek me, and find me, when you shall search for me with all your hearts. Jer 29:11-14.
In those days, and at that time, will I cause the branch of righteousness to grow up unto David, and he shall execute judgment and righteousness in the land. Jer 33:15. In those days shall Judah be saved, and Jerusalem shall dwell safely, and this is the name wherewith he shall be called, The Lord our Righteousness. For thus said the Lord, David shall never want a man to sit upon the throne of the house of Israel, Jer 33:16-17. This is he that is the Lord of the Sabbath. And when you come not to turn away your foot from this Sabbath, and call this Sabbath a delight, then shall you delight your self in the Lord, and he shall cause you to ride upon the high place of the earth. Isa 58:13-14.
Therefore turn to the Lord God, who is the rest of his people, and turn your minds to the measure of God's grace in you, by which the Lord God leads, and teaches, and guides his people, and there you will come to know and find the true Sabbath, and rest to your souls. For with stammering lips, and another tongue, will he speak to this people, to whom he said, this is the rest, wherewith you may cause the weary to rest, and this is the refreshing, yet they would not hear, Isa 28:11-12.
And now is that fulfilled which Hosea spoke of in the 2nd Chapter, verse 11: I will also cause all her mirth to cease; her feasts, her new moons, and her Sabbaths, and all her solemn feasts. And all your outward washings, and carnal ordinances, and sacrifices, is the Lord weary of, they are abomination unto him; he that kills an ox, as if he flew a man, he that sacrifices a lamb, as if he cut off a dogs neck, he that offers an oblation, as if he offered swine’s blood; he that burns incense, as if he blessed an idol. Yes, they have chosen their own ways, and their soul delights in their abominations, Isa 66:3.
Sacrifice and offerings you do not desire, mine ears have you opened. Burnt offerings, and sin offerings, you have not required; Psa 40:6. and David said, O Lord, open you my lips, and my mouth shall show forth your praise: for you desire not sacrifice, else would I give it; you delight not in burnt-offerings. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, a broken and a contrite heart, O God you do not despise, Psa 51:15-17. For I the Lord love judgment, I hate robbery for burnt-offerings, I will direct their work in truth. And I will make an everlasting covenant with them, Isa 61:8. For I desired mercy, and not sacrifice; Hosea 6:6. Then said I, lo I come, in the volume of your book it is written of me, I delight to do your will O God; yea, your Law is within my heart, Psa 40:7-8.
This is the offering the Lord accepts, this is the sacrifice the Lord delights in, the knowledge of God, the keeping of his Law, the fulfilling of his will. Therefore to the Lord God turn, for obedience is better than sacrifice, and to hearken, than the fat of rams. 1 Sam 15:22. And in the obedience to the pure measure of the Light and Law of God, you will come to know the inward washing and cleansing, and so come to answer the Lord, who said, wash you, and make you clean, put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil, learn to do well, seek judgment. Come now and let us reason together said the Lord, 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 you be willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the Land: but if you refuse and rebel, you shall be devoured with the sword; for the mouth of the Lord has spoken it, Isa 1:16-20.
Therefore give over your outward washings, your outward observances, and ceremonies, and carnal ordinances, they are beggarly, and the Lord abhors them; your temple, and your synagogues, that is outward, your circumcision, that is outward, your Sabbath, that is outward, your burnt offerings and sacrifices which are outward, your calling of assemblies and solemn feasts, for all those things said the Lord, does my soul hate. For behold the Lord will come with fire, and with chariots like a whirlwind, to render his anger with fury, and his rebukes with flames of fire. For by fire, and by his sword will the Lord plead with all flesh, and the slain of the Lord shall be many, Isa 66:15-16. For behold the whirlwind of the Lord goes forth with fury, a continuing whirlwind, it shall fall with pain upon the head of the wicked, the fierce anger of the Lord shall not return until he has done it, until he has performed the intent of his heart; in the latter day you shall consider it, Jer 30:23-24.
Therefore consider this, you that forget God, lest I tear you in pieces, and there be none to deliver. Now you have time prize it, this is the day of your visitation, wherein the Lord God has visited you, and called you, and showed you the way of peace, which shall be an eternal witness for the living God against you, if you rebel against it; for rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness, is iniquity and idolatry; and if you reject the word of the Lord, he will also reject you. So turn to the Lord who calls you, why will you die? that so you may come to know the living and true God, who desires that all should be saved, and come to the knowledge of the truth; who calls, Turn again O virgin of Israel, turn again to these your cities; how long will you go about, O back-sliding daughter; for the Lord has created a new thing in the earth, a woman shall compass a man; Jer 31:21-22. But to you this is a mystery, and to all who are running abroad, whoring in your imaginations; therefore to that Spirit of God, which calls your minds within to turn, that so you may come to witness your Law to be inward, written in the heart, and your covenant new, which cannot be broken. And this is the covenant which the Lord made with Abraham, and your temple to be spiritual, which is made of living stones, elect and precious, and your circumcision to be inward of the heart, in the Spirit, and not in the letter. That so you may come to offer the sacrifice of a broken and contrite heart, which is the sacrifice God accepts; and to be obedient to the measure committed to you, which is better than your outward sacrifice. And so that you may not only be the Jew outwardly, and so be found to be the synagogues of Satan, but that you may be the Jew inwardly, whose praise is not of men but of God. And when you come to know this condition, then will you know your King, when he reveals himself; and this is the way that is set before you, and by no other way shall you ever come to know the true and living God.
And so as Moses said to your forefathers; I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing, and cursing, therefore choose life, that both you and your seed may live. That you may love the Lord your God, and that you may obey his voice, and that you may cleave unto him, for he is your Life, and the length of your days; that you may dwell in the land which the Lord swore unto your Fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give them, Deut 30:19-20.
I charge you Manasseh Ben Israel, as you will answer it before the living God, that you let this be read and published among your brethren, and go abroad among them where they are scattered. Given forth by one redeemed from Babylon, and Egypt, by the mighty power, and out-stretched arm of the Lord, to which power all nations shall bow and tremble, who has set up an ensign for the gathering of the nations together, who desires the good of all souls, and waits for the redemption, and the bringing back out of captivity of the whole seed; which the promise and covenant of the Lord is to. That they may arise and come out of Babylon, Sodom, and Egypt, and with us serve the Lord in the land of the living. And this shall be answered with that of God in all consciences.
The figures, and the types, and the shadows are ceased, the Lord God is departed out of them, and the substance of them is come, the holy seed is risen, the substance thereof. The Lord has sent the strength of his rod out of Zion, who is the covenant of Light; to open the blind eyes, and bring out the prisoners out of prison, and them that sit in darkness, out of the prison-house, that they may sing a new song unto the Lord, and his praise from the end of the earth. And the day of the Lord's power is come, in which he makes his people willing, and as many as receive him, to them he gives power.
Early Quakers Writings Addressed to to the Jews on this Site are as follows:
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