The Missing Cross to Purity


The Journal of George Fox

A JOURNAL

OR

HISTORICAL ACCOUNT

OF THE

 

LIFE, TRAVELS, SUFFERINGS,

 

CHRISTIAN EXPERIENCES AND LABOUR OF LOVE

IN THE

WORKS OF THE MINISTRY


OF THAT

ANCIENT, EMINENT, AND FAITHFUL


SERVANT OF JESUS CHRIST,


GEORGE FOX
(1624-1691)

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Although this book was written in the 17th Century,

THIS IS A BOOK FOR ALL TIMES.

For it testifies to the ever-available Christian perfection, purity, and holiness.

From the Word of the Lord within:
"The two most important books on this site are: The Journal of George Fox
and No Cross No Crown by William Penn."

Site Editor's Preface

This Journal was scanned from the 1831 The Works of George Fox, edited by Thomas Ellwood. The text has been changed to more closely conform to current standards for English, but the meaning of each sentence has been preserved. Several text additions, all marked as to the source, are included for background and additional detail. Text surrounded by braces, i.e., {text xxx} refers to additional text extracted from the Cambridge Journal, an unedited reconstruction from George Fox's original handwritten manuscripts, (click to see a sample); the text having been omitted from the official published version edited by Ellwood.

If you want a paper book Journal, the best available is edited by Wilson Armistead, which has been mostly edited to modern English and is sold for about $30; the next to best is edited by John Nickalls, which is in 18th Century English and sold for about $25; both versions are far better than the Rufus Jones version, which is deliberately short of some incredible spiritual experiences of Fox, including Fox's translation into the Kingdom of Heaven. (Rufus Jones, a 20th Century Quaker leader, had disdain for Fox, labeling Fox an escapist for preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ instead of being dedicated to social action like Jones.) Both the Nickalls version and the Armistead version retain all of Fox's experiences. The language of Nickalls' paper version is 17th and 18th Century English; the Armistead has modern English wording, which is also available in PDF format along with the rest of George Fox's works and a few other significant early Quaker writings. For more information on the history of the various Journals, click here.

If you are new to Fox, I have a suggestion: study what he says. If there is something in the Bible, which you think conflicts with what Fox has written, try this approach in resolving the apparent difference: assume Fox is right, and now reexamine the scripture, questioning and searching your mind on how it could be interpreted to support what Fox says. If you do that, you will invariably see that every scripture is in harmony with Fox's entire message, with no exceptions. But, if you fail to reconsider your past understandings, which might be wrong, you must discard many scriptures that are incompatible with the subset of scriptures that you dearly hold to be true. All scriptures are compatible; if you have to disregard one to maintain your understanding, then you don’t understand the ones you think you do. One day, when you get that one more piece of the scripture puzzle, you will see how all the scriptures are totally compatible; and then you have the correct formula for what God desires and what he detests. Knowledge is not salvation, but exposes false salvations, and points the way to the one true salvation, which is to be delivered from sin and is to be experienced.

For a short history of the church's departure from the teachings of Christ, up to the time of just before the ministry of George Fox, William Penn's Introduction to this Journal is excellent; for more detail on the history of Christianity, click here.

Short Introduction by George Fox

The appearance of the Lord's Everlasting Truth,
and breaking forth again in his eternal power in this our day and age in England.

The Lord's mighty power and word of life has been richly and freely preached, to the gathering of many into reconciliation with God. This has exalted our great God and increased his glory by the produce of the heavenly and spiritual fruits from those who have been gathered by his eternal light, power, and spirit back to himself. And by the sowing to the spirit in the hearts of people, life eternal has been reaped; so that his flocks have been gathered, which have the milk of the word in rich abundance, that the riches of the word have flourished, and mightily abounded; and God's heavenly plough with his spiritual men has gone on cheerfully to overturn the fallow ground of the hearts that had not born heavenly fruit to God. And God's heavenly harvesters with his heavenly flail, have with joy and delight separated out the chaff and the corruptions that have been over God's seed and wheat in man and woman; and thus have they threshed in hope, and are made partakers of their hope; through which God's seed has come into his granary.

Oh! the unspeakable glory and the inexpressible excellence of the everlasting glorious truth, gospel, and word of life, that the infinite, invisible, and wise God (who is over all) has revealed and shown!

And how the professed christian believers, priests, and powers have risen up in opposition against his children who have been born of the immortal seed by the word of God! And Oh! how great have been the persecutions, and scorns, and seizures of personal property, all executed upon his children! But for those who have touched them, which are as dear to God as the apple of his eye, how the Lord has manifested himself to be standing with them in the overthrow of powers, priests, and states! What changes have there been since 1644 and 1650 and 1652! Since then in this nation how have the jails been filled with the heirs of life, God's chosen ones, who had no helper in the earth but the Lord and his Christ! So that truth's faithful witnesses were scarcely to be found except in jails and prisons, where the righteous were numbered among the transgressors; who had neither staff nor bag from man, but the staff, the bread of life, and the bag that holds the treasure that does not grow old. But the Lord Jesus Christ, who sent them out, was their exceeding great supporter and upholder, by his eternal power and spirit, both then and now.

George Fox  

Site Editor's Note: George Fox was the founder of the Quakers. Of the many thousands of early Quakers who attained Christ resurrected in them, few were called to be traveling evangelists, as was George Fox. Most were shopkeepers, tradesmen, servants, farmers, and even many soldiers; they were predominately from the middle class and from all professions. However, each person had an office in the Body of Christ, appointed by the Spirit of God, so that everyone served God in their place and position.

1643-1648 Early Years and George Fox's Translation into the Kingdom of God

Text in Light Blue or bold Light Blue can be "clicked" for backup in scripture or detail in writings.

THAT all may know the dealings of the Lord with me, and the various exercises, trials, and troubles through which he led me, in order to prepare and fit me for the work to which he had appointed me, and may thereby be drawn to admire and glorify his infinite wisdom and goodness; I think fit, before I proceed to set forth my public travels in the service of truth, briefly to mention how it was with me in my youth, and how the work of the Lord was begun, and gradually carried on in me, even from my childhood.

I was born in the month called July, in the year 1624, at Drayton in the Clay, in Leicestershire. My father's name was Christopher Fox. He was by profession a weaver, an honest man, and there was a seed of God in him. The neighbors called him righteous Christer. My mother was an upright woman; her maiden name was Mary Lago, of the family of the Lagos, and of the stock of the martyrs.

In my very young years I had a gravity and soberness of mind and spirit unusual in children; so much so that when I saw old men conduct themselves lightly and loosely towards each other, a dislike of that rose in my heart, and I said within myself, 'If ever I reach the age to be a man, surely I should not do so, nor be so loose.'

When I was eleven years of age, I knew pureness and righteousness; for while I was a child, I was taught how to walk so as to keep pure. The Lord taught me to be faithful in all things, and to act faithfully two ways: inwardly to God, and outwardly to man; and to keep to yes and no in all things. For the Lord showed me, that though the people of the world have mouths full of deceit and changeable words, yet I was to keep to yes and no in all things; that my words should be few and savory, seasoned with grace; and that I was not to eat and drink to excess, only for health; using the creatures in their service, as servants in their places, to the glory of him who created them; they being in their covenant, and I being brought up into the covenant, as sanctified by the word, [Christ, the living Word of God, not the Bible], which was in the beginning, by which all things were upheld, in which there is unity with the creation.

Site Editor's Note: Do not take Fox's youthful purity as evidence that only the pure can attain the promises of God, for we also have the sixteen year old minister, James Parnell's testimony in his memoir that "he was perfect in sin and exceeded many in the wickedness of his life," until he was changed by the grace of God to become a powerful minister reaching many in his time.

The “creatures” are anything of the creation.

But people being strangers to the covenant of life with God, they eat and drink to make themselves unrestrained with the creatures, wasting them upon their lusts, living in all filthiness, loving foul ways, and devouring the creation; all this in the world, in the pollutions of that without God; therefore I was to be a stranger to all such people and practices.

As I grew up my relatives wanted me to be priest or preacher; but others persuaded to the contrary. Later I was apprenticed to a shoemaker by trade who also dealt in wool. He also used grazing, and sold cattle; and I personally handled a lot of business. While I was with him he was blessed, but after I left him, his business failed and came to nothing. I never wronged a man or woman in all that time; for the Lord's power was with me, and over me, to preserve me. While I was in that service, I used in my dealings the word 'verily,' and it was a common saying among those that knew me, 'If George says verily, there is no altering him.' When boys and rude persons would laugh at me, I let them alone and went my way; but people generally had a love for me because of my innocence and honesty.

Site Editor's Note: In Fox's time, anyone who publicly declared or "professed" their belief in scriptures and Christ was known as a "professor." The only colleges were religious schools, naturally taught by a “professor.” As universities and colleges broadened into secular subjects, all teachers retained the titles of  "professor."

When I approached nineteen years of age I was at a fair on business, and one of my cousins, a professor named Bradford, accompanied by another professor came and asked me to drink part of a jug of beer with them. Since I was thirsty I joined with them; and I also loved anyone who valued goodness or that sought the Lord. When we had each drunk a glass of beer, they began to drink toasts "to your health", and called for more drinks. They agreed together that he who quit drinking would buy the drinks. I was grieved that any who professed religion should force the expense of the drinking to the one least prone to excessive drinking. At which point I stood up to leave, put my hand in my pocket, took out a coin, and laid it upon the table before them saying, 'If that's the way it is, I am leaving you.' So I left, and when my business was finished, I returned home; but I did not go to bed that night, and I could not sleep. Instead some of the time I walked up and down, sometimes praying and crying to the Lord; He said unto me: 'You see how young people associate in vanity, and old people the earth;* but you must forsake all, young and old, keep out of all, and be as a stranger to all.'

*Site Editor's Note: "old people the earth" means to take pride in the possessions of the earth.

Then at the command of God, on the ninth of the seventh month, 1643, I left my relatives and broke off friendship or fellowship with all people, young or old. I passed to Lutterworth where I stayed some time. From there I went to Northampton, where I also stayed awhile; then I passed to Newportpagnel, in Buckinghamshire; where after I had stayed awhile, I went to Barnet in the sixth month called June, in the year 1644. Thus as I traveled through the country, professors took notice of me, and sought to be acquainted with me; but I was afraid of them, for I was sensible they did not possess what they professed. During the time I was at Barnet, a strong temptation to despair came upon me. I saw then how Christ was tempted. But I was under a lot of troubles from temptations and depression. Sometimes I kept myself retired in my bedroom, and often walked alone in the forest to wait on the Lord, (hoping to hear him speak about my concerns).

I wondered why these temptations should come to me. I looked upon myself, and said, ' Was I ever like this before now? Then I thought that because I had left my relatives, I had done something wrong to them. So I reviewed my life's past, questioning if I had harmed anyone; but temptations grew more and more, and I was tempted to almost give up hope and quit. And when Satan could not succeed against me in that way, he placed traps and lures in front of me to draw me to commit some sin, by which he might take advantage to bring me to depression or defeat. I was about twenty years of age when these exercises came upon me, and for some years I continued in that condition in great trouble, and would have been very glad to get rid of them. I went to many priests looking for comfort, but I found no comfort from them.

From Barnet I went to London, where I took a rented a room, and I was very miserable and troubled there too because I looked upon the great professors of the city of London and saw that they were all in darkness and under the chain of darkness. I had an uncle there named Pickering who was a Baptist, and they were open and loving then; yet I could not express my thoughts to him or join with them for I saw everyone, young and old, where they were spiritually. Some tender and loving people would have had me stay with them, but I was fearful of associating with them; and so I returned in the direction of my home in Leicestershire, thinking that I might be grieving my parents and relatives because of my absence.

When I returned to Leicestershire, my relatives wanted me to get married; but I told them I was too young for marriage and I wished to obtain wisdom first. Others wanted me to join the auxiliary companies of the army; but I refused, and I was saddened that they proposed such things to me, being so young. Then I went to Coventry, where I took a room for awhile at a professor's house, until people began to get acquainted with me; for there were many tender and loving people in that town. And after some time I went into my own country again, and continued about a year in great sorrow and trouble walking many nights by myself.

Drayton was the town of my birth, and I often met with the local priest named Nathaniel Stevens. Some of the meetings, he came to me, and others I went to him. Sometimes another priest came with him, and they would defer to me, and let me talk. I would ask them questions and reason with them. Once priest Stevens asked me, why Christ had cried out upon the cross, 'My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?' And why he said, 'If it is possible, let this cup pass from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.' I told him, at that time the sins of all mankind were upon him, and all of mankind's iniquities and transgressions were wounding him; he had to bear the pain of all the evil in the world and to be an offering for it as he was a man, rather than as God; so, in that he died for all men, tasting death for every man, he was an offering for the sins of the whole world. I spoke this understanding being at that time in a small way sensible of Christ's sufferings and what he went through. The priest said, 'It was a very good, full answer, and such a one as he had not heard.' Around this time in our relationship, he was very complimentary and he spoke highly of me to others. Priest Stevens would use my statements made to him during our weekday meetings as the subject of his First-day sermons, and I grew to dislike him for this use of me. Afterwards this priest became my great persecutor.

Site Editor's Note: Since the days of the week, and months, are named after pagan gods, and since scripture forbids the speaking or writing of their names, George Fox and the early Quakers named the days and months as First-day instead of Sunday, and Sixth-month instead of June, etc.

After this I went to another elderly priest at Mansetter in Warwickshire, and reasoned with him about the ground of despair and temptations; but he was ignorant of my condition. He told me to smoke tobacco and sing psalms. Tobacco was a thing I did not love, and I was not in a state to sing psalms; I could not sing. He told me to come again, and he would disclose to me many things; but when I came, he was angry and fretful because having reflected on what I had previously told him, he was displeased. He had revealed my troubles, sorrows, and griefs to his servants including the young milk girls. It grieved me that I had opened my heart's and mind's misery to such an insensitive person. I saw that all the priests and professors were miserable comforters, and this made my troubles even worse upon me. I heard of a priest living about Tamworth, who had a reputation as an experienced man. I went seven miles to see him, but I found him like an empty, hollow cask. I heard of Dr. Cradock in Coventry, and I went to him; I asked him the ground of temptations and despair, and how troubles came to be formed in man? He asked me, ‘who was Christ's father and mother?' I told him Mary was his mother, and that he was supposed to be the son of Joseph; but he was the son of God. As we were walking together down the narrow pathway, I accidentally stepped into the garden bed while turning; at which he shouted in anger at me as if his house had been set fire.

Our discussion ended and I left more sorrowful than when I arrived. I concluded the priests and professors were miserable comforters of people, and saw they were all nothing of benefit to me; for they could not understand or help me in my spiritual grief. After this I went to another highly regarded priest, named Maeham. He wanted to give me some medicines and tried to drain blood from me; but as hard as they tried, they couldn't get one drop of blood from me, either from my arms or my head. My body was so dried up with sorrows, griefs, and troubles, which were so great upon me, that I wished I had never been born; or that I would have been born blind so that I might never have seen wickedness nor vanity; and deaf so that I might never have heard vain and wicked words, or the Lord's name blasphemed. When the time called Christmas came, while others were feasting and celebrating, I knocked on doors, house to house, and upon discovering widows within, I gave them some money. When I was invited to attend marriage ceremonies I did not attend them at all; but the next day, or soon after, I would go and visit them; and if they were poor, I gave them some money; for I had the capacity both to keep myself from being an expense to others, and to administer something to the necessities of others.

About the beginning of the year 1646, as I was going into Coventry, a consideration arose in me, how it was said, that 'all christians are believers, both Protestants and Papists;' and the Lord opened to me that if all were believers, then they were all born of God, and passed from death to life; and that none were true believers unless that [passed from death to life] had happened; and though others said they were believers, yet they were not. At another time, as I was walking in a field on a First-day morning, the Lord opened in me an understanding, 'that being educated at Oxford or Cambridge was not enough to fit and qualify men to be ministers of Christ;'* and this stimulated my thinking about it because it was the common belief of people. But I saw it clearly as the Lord opened it to me, and I was convinced of its truth. I admired the goodness of the Lord, who had opened this understanding to me that morning. This struck at priest Stevens' ministry, namely, 'that to be bred at Oxford or Cambridge was not enough to make a man fit to be a minister of Christ.' So what opened in me, I saw struck at the priest's ministry.

Site Editor's Note: To see the unbelievably barbarous behavior of ministerial students from Oxford and Cambridge, read the later records of their severe persecuting, even to the death of their victims. After you read these accounts, you will see how the Lord's discounting of a college's Bible education was profoundly true.

"Openings" were clear understandings received directly from the Lord, by His still silent voice — the Word of the Lord within each person's heart and mouth.

But my relatives were much troubled that I would not go with them to the "church" to hear the priest; instead I went into the orchard or the fields, with my bible, by myself. I asked them, did not John say to believers, 'that they needed no man to teach them, but as the anointing teaches them.' (1 John 2:27). Though they knew this scripture to be true, they were still upset and fearful because I could not yield to their wishes in this matter and go to hear the priest with them. I saw that a true believer was something different than what they believed one to be; and I saw that being educated at Oxford or Cambridge did not qualify or fit a man to be a minister of Christ. Knowing that, why would I want to follow people from Oxford or Cambridge? So I could not join in with them or any of the dissenting groups; but I was as a stranger to all and relied entirely upon the Lord Jesus Christ.

At another time it was opened in me, 'that God who made the world did not dwell in temples made with hands.' This at first seemed strange, because both priests and people used to call their temples or churches, dreadful places, holy ground, and the temples of God. But the Lord showed me clearly, that he did not dwell in these temples which men had commanded and built, but in people's hearts. Both Stephen and the apostle Paul bore testimony, that He did not dwell in temples made with hands, not even in the one temple of Jerusalem which he had once commanded to be built, since he put an end to the typical dispensation; but that his people were his temple, and he dwelt in them. This opened in me, as I walked in the fields to my relation's house. When I came there, they told me Nathaniel Stevens, the priest, had been there, and said, 'he was afraid of me for going after new lights.' I smiled in myself, knowing what the Lord had opened in me concerning him and his fellow priests educated at Oxford and Cambridge. Even though my relatives understood beyond the priests’ understandings, I did not relate my understandings to my relatives who still went to hear the priests and were grieved because I would not go with them. But I showed them by the scriptures that there was an anointing within man to teach him, and that the Lord would teach his people himself. I had great openings concerning things written in the Revelation; and when I spoke of them, the priests and professors would say that Revelation was a sealed book and discouraged me from reading it. But I told them that Christ could open the seals, and that the Book of Revelation was the nearest book to our generation; because the letters of the Apostles were written to the saints that lived in former ages, but the Revelation had been written of things to come.*

*Site Editor's Note: From the Word of the Lord within: " Revelation foretells the future."

If you read the web site's commentary and footnotes in the Book of Revelation, you will understand the future to be what is experienced in a believer's journey of faith to the kingdom and union with God. There is also a separate web page titled, The Second Appearance of Jesus is Within the Hearts of Purified Believers.

After this I met with a group of people that believed women had no souls, (adding in a light manner), no more than a goose. I reproved them, and told them that was not right; for Mary said, ‘My soul does magnify the Lord, and my spirit has rejoiced in God my savior.'

Going on to another place I came among a people that relied too much on dreams for their spiritual guidance. I told them unless they could distinguish between dream and dream they would confuse them all together for there were three sorts of dreams: multitude of business sometimes caused dreams, there were whisperings of satan in man at night, and there were speakings of God to man in dreams. These people stopped relying on dreams and at last became Friends.

Though I had great openings, yet great trouble and temptations came many times upon me, so that when it was day I wished for night, and when it was night I wished for day; and by reason of the openings I had in my troubles, I could say as David said, 'Day unto day utters speech, and night unto night sows knowledge.' When I had openings they answered, one another; and answered the scriptures; for I had great openings of the scriptures; and when I was in troubles, one trouble also answered to another.

About the beginning of 1647, I was moved by the Lord to go into Derbyshire, where I met with some friendly people, and had many discussions with them. Then passing into the Peak country, I met with more friendly people, and with some in empty high notions. And traveling on through some parts of Leicestershire, and into Nottinghamshire, I met with a tender people, and a very tender woman, whose name was Elizabeth Hooton.* With these I had some meetings and discussions; but my troubles continued, and I was often under great temptations. I fasted much, walked abroad in solitary places many days, and often took my bible, and sat in hollow trees and lonesome places until night came on; and frequently in the night walked mournfully about by myself, for I was a man of sorrows in the time of the first workings of the Lord in me.

* Site Editor's Note: Elizabeth Hooton was one of the first people to be convinced of the truth by George Fox, and the first woman to become a Quaker minister in 1650. She was the wife of  a socially prominent husband, and she was not only the first female Quaker minister, but the second minister of the Society, and counted as one of the valiant sixty, a group of evangelists following George Fox to be sent by the Lord all over England. There is a Memoir to Elizabeth Hooton on this site with more details of her life and incredibly courageous sufferings.

During all this time I never joined any religious group, but gave up myself to the Lord forsaking all evil company and leaving my father and mother, and all other relatives; I traveled up and down as a stranger in the earth, as the Lord had inclined my heart, taking a rented room to myself in the town where I came, and staying sometimes more, sometimes less in a place; for I dared not stay long in a place, being afraid both of professors and the ungodly persons; being a tender young man, I feared I should be hurt by conversing much with either. Because of this I kept myself as a stranger to all, seeking heavenly wisdom, and getting knowledge from the Lord; and my affections were redirected from outward things to focus on the Lord alone. Though my exercises and troubles were very great, they were not continuous, and I had occasional relief; sometimes I was brought into such a heavenly joy that I thought I had been in Abraham's bosom. As I cannot declare the misery I was in, it was so great and heavy upon me, so neither can I set forth the mercies of God shown to me in all my misery. Oh, the everlasting love of God to my soul, when I was in great distress! When my troubles and torments were great, then his love was exceedingly great. You, O Lord, make a fruitful field a barren wilderness, and a barren wilderness a fruitful field! You bring down and prop up! You kill and make alive! All honor and glory is yours, O Lord of glory! The knowledge of you in the spirit is life; but that knowledge which is fleshly works death. While there is  knowledge of God in the flesh, deceit and self will conform to anything, and will say, yes, yes, to that it does not know. The prophets and apostles talked about fleshly knowledge which the world has. The prophets and apostles were in the life [which is the light of God], but the apostates are without life and only have record of their words; they have the holy scriptures in a form, but not in the life or spirit that spoke the scriptures originally. So they all lie in confusion, and are making provision for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts of the flesh, but not to fulfill the law and commands of Christ in his power and spirit; for that, they say they cannot do. But to fulfill the lusts of the flesh, that they can do with delight.

After I had received that opening from the Lord, that to be bred at Oxford or Cambridge was not sufficient to make a man a minister of Christ, I regarded the priests less, and looked more after the dissenting people. Among them I saw there was some tenderness; and many of them came afterwards to be convinced, for they had some openings. But as I had given up on the priests, so I also left the separate preachers and those called the most experienced people; for I saw there was none among them all that could speak to my condition. And when all my hopes in them and in all men were gone, so that I had nothing outwardly to help me, nor could anyone  tell me what to do; then, Oh! Then I heard a voice which said, ‘There is one, even Christ Jesus, that can speak to your condition.' When I heard it, my heart leaped for joy. Then the Lord let me see why there was none upon the earth that could speak to my condition; namely, that I might give him all the glory. For all are bound under sin, and shut up in unbelief, as I had been, and to become free, each person must know that Christ is the creator and he alone understands us; he who enlightens, and gives grace, faith, and power. And when God does work, who shall hinder it? This I knew experimentally.

My desires after the Lord grew stronger, and zeal in the pure knowledge of God, and of Christ alone, without the help of any man, book, or writing. For though I read the scriptures that spoke of Christ and of God, yet I knew him only by revelation, as he who has the key did open, and as the Father of life drew me to his son by his spirit. Then the Lord gently led me along, and let me see his love, which was endless and eternal, surpassing all the knowledge that men have in the natural state, or can get by history or books. That love let me see myself, as I was without him; and I was afraid of all company; for I saw them perfectly, where they were, through the love of God which let me see myself. I did not have fellowship with any people, priests, nor professors, nor any sort of separated people. My fellowship was only with Christ who has the key, and opened the door of light and life unto me. I was afraid of all carnal talk and talkers, for I could see nothing but corruptions, and the life lay under the burden of corruptions. When I was in the deep, under all shut up, I could not believe that I could ever overcome; my troubles, my sorrows, and my temptations were so great, that I often thought I should give up all hope in despair,  and it was very tempting. But when Christ opened to me how he was tempted by the same devil, and had overcome him, and had bruised his head; and that through him and his power, light, grace, and spirit, I would overcome also, I had confidence in him. So it was he that opened to me, when I was shut up, and had neither hope nor faith. Christ, who had enlightened me, gave me his light to believe in, and gave me hope, which is himself, revealed himself in me, and gave me his spirit and grace, which I found sufficient in the deeps and in weakness. Thus in the deepest miseries and in the greatest sorrows and temptations that plagued me, the Lord in his mercy did keep me. I found two thirsts in me; the one after the things of creation, to be helped and strengthened by them; and the other after the Lord the creator, and his son Jesus Christ; and I saw all the world could do me no good. If I had had a king's diet, palace, and attendance, all would have been as nothing; for nothing gave me comfort but the Lord by his power. I saw professors, priests, and people were whole and at ease in the same condition which was my misery, and they loved what I would have gotten rid of. But the Lord did fix my desires upon himself, from whom my help came, and my cares were cast on him alone. Therefore, all wait patiently upon the Lord, whatever condition; wait in the grace and truth that comes by Jesus; for if you so do, there is a promise to you, and the Lord God will fulfill it in you. And blessed are all they indeed that do indeed hunger and thirst after righteousness, they shall be satisfied with it. I have found it so; praised be the Lord who fills with it, and satisfies the desires of the hungry soul. Oh! let the house of the spiritual Israel say, his mercy endures forever! It is the great love of God, to make a wilderness of what is pleasant to the outward eye and fleshly mind; and to make a fruitful field from a barren wilderness. This is the great work of God. But while people's minds run in the earthly, after the creatures and changeable things, changeable ways and religions, and changeable uncertain teachers; their minds are in bondage, and they are brittle and changeable, tossed up and down with windy doctrines, thoughts, notions, and things; their minds being out of the unchangeable truth in the inward parts, the light of Jesus Christ, which would keep them to the unchangeable. He is the way to the Father; who, in all my troubles preserved me by his spirit and power, praised be his holy name forever!

Again, I heard a voice which said, 'You serpent, You seek to destroy the life, but you cannot; because the sword which keeps the tree of life shall destroy you.' So Christ, the word of God, who bruised the head of the serpent, the destroyer, preserved me; my mind being joined to his good seed that bruised the head of this serpent, the destroyer. This inward life sprang up in me, to answer all the opposing professors and priests, and brought scriptures to my memory to refute them with. At another time I saw the great love of God, and was filled with admiration at the infiniteness of it. I saw what was cast out from God, and what entered into God's kingdom; and how by Jesus, the opener of the door by his heavenly key, the entrance to his kingdom was given. I saw death and how it had passed upon all men, and oppressed the seed of God in man, and in me; and how I was formed and recreated in the seed, and what the promise was to. Despite this development within me, that there still seemed to be two distinct things pleading in me; and questions and doubts arose in my mind about gifts and prophecies, and I was tempted again to despair, worrying that I had sinned against the holy spirit. I was in great perplexity and trouble for many days; yet I still gave up myself to the Lord. One day, when I had been walking solitarily outside and had come home, I was taken up in the love of God, so that I could only admire the greatness of his love; and while I was in that condition, it was opened to me by the eternal light and power within by which I clearly saw that all was done and to be done in and by Christ; and how he conquers and destroys this tempter, the devil, and all his works, and is over the devil; and that all these troubles and temptations were good for me and were given to me by Christ as the trial of my faith. The Lord opened me so that I could see beyond and through all these troubles and temptations.

When I saw that all was done by Christ the life, my living faith was increased, and my belief was in him. When at any time my I lost sight of my true condition in Christ, my secret belief held firm, and hope underneath held me, as an anchor in the bottom of the sea; and anchored my immortal soul to its bishop, causing my soul to swim above the sea, the world, where all the raging waves, foul weather, tempests, and temptations are. But Oh! Then did I see my troubles, trials, and temptations more clearly than ever I had done. As the light appeared,* all appeared that is out of the light; darkness, death, temptations, the unrighteous, the ungodly; all was exposed and seen in the light. After this, a pure fire** appeared in me; then I saw how Christ performed as a refiner's fire, and as the fuller's soap. Then the spiritual discerning came into me; by which I discerned my own thoughts, groans, and sighs; and what it was that veiled me, and what it was that opened me. That which could not abide in the patience, nor endure the fire, in the light I found to be the groans of the flesh, that could not give up to the will of God; which had so veiled me, that I could not be patient in all trials, troubles, anguishes, and perplexities; could not give up self to die by the cross, the power of God, that the living and quickened might follow him, and that what would cloud and veil from the presence of Christ, what the sword of the spirit cuts down, and which must die, might not be kept alive. I discerned the groans of the spirit, which opened me, and made intercession to God; in which spirit is the true waiting upon God, for the redemption of the body, and of the whole creation. By this true spirit, in which the true sighing is, I saw over the false sighs and groans. By this invisible spirit I discerned all the false hearing, the false seeing, and the false smelling, which was above the spirit, quenching and grieving it; and that all that were there were in confusion and deceit, where the false asking and praying is, in deceit and atop, in that nature and tongue that takes God's holy name in vain, wallows in the Egyptian sea, and asks but has not; for they hate his light, resist the holy spirit, turn  grace into an excuse to continue in sin, rebel against the spirit, and are erred from the faith they should ask in, and from the spirit they should pray by. He that knows these things in the true spirit can witness them. The divine light of Christ manifests all things, and the spiritual fire tries and severs all things. As the Lord opened to me, I saw several things; for he showed me what can live in his holy refining fire and what can live to God under his law. He gave me understanding of how the law and the prophets were until John; and how the least in the everlasting kingdom of God is greater than John. The pure and perfect law of God is over the flesh to keep it and its imperfect works under by the perfect law; and the law of God, which is perfect, answers the perfect principle of God in everyone. This law the Jews, the prophets, and John were to perform and do. None knows the giver of this law but by the spirit of God; neither can any truly read the law or hear the voice of the law except by the spirit of God’s help.

* Site Editor's Note, in regard to the light appearing:

There are over one hundred other scriptures that reference the light of God. Click to see.

** Site Editor's Note, in regard to the fire appearing:

He that can receive it, let him. John, who was one of the greatest prophets that was born of a woman, bore witness to the light which was Christ, the great heavenly prophet, the true Light coming into the world that illumines every person; that they might believe in it and become the children of light, and so have the light of life, and not come into condemnation. For the true belief stands in the light that condemns all evil; and the devil, who is the prince of darkness, would draw out of the light into condemnation. They that walk in this light, come to the mountain of the house of God, established above all mountains, and to God's teaching, who will teach them his ways. These things were opened to me in the light.

I saw also the mountains burning up, and the rubbish, and the rough, and crooked ways and places made smooth and plain, that the Lord might come into his tabernacle. These things are to be found in man's heart; but to speak of these things being within, seemed strange to the rough, crooked, and mountainous ones. Yet the Lord said, ‘0h earth, hear the word of the Lord!

Site Editor's Note: The scripture for that explains Fox's experience is, "Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be brought low; and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough ways shall be made smooth." Luke 3:5.

Fox also has a detailed writing, which describes the mirror of the earth in every man's heart. See A Word From the Lord, to All the World.

The law of the spirit crosses the fleshly mind, spirit, and will, which lives in disobedience, and does not keep within the law of the spirit. I saw this law was the pure love of God which was upon me, and which I must go through, though I was troubled while I was under it; for I could not be dead to the law but through the law, which judged and condemned what is to be condemned. I saw, many talked of the law, who had never known the law to be their schoolmaster;* and many talked of the gospel of Christ, who had never known life and immortality brought to light in them by it. You that have been under that schoolmaster, and the condemnation of it, know these things; for though the Lord in that day opened these things unto me in secret, they have been since published by his eternal spirit, as on the house top. And as you are brought into the law, and through the law to be dead to it, and witness [see, experience] the righteousness of the law fulfilled in you, you will afterwards come to know what it is to be brought into the faith, and through faith from under the law; and abiding in the faith, which Christ is the author of, you will have peace and access to God. But if you look out from the faith, and from that which would keep you in the victory, and look after fleshly things or for words [speaking your own words] you will be brought into bondage to the flesh again, and to the law which takes hold upon the flesh and sin, and works wrath, and the works of the flesh will appear again. The law of God takes hold upon the law of sin and death; but the law of faith, or the law of the spirit of life, which is the love of God, and which comes by Jesus, (who is the end of the law for righteousness' sake), makes you free from the law of sin and death. This law of life fleshly minded men do not know; yet they will tempt you to draw you from the spirit into the flesh, and so into bondage. Therefore you, who know the love of God, and the law of his spirit, and the freedom that is in Jesus Christ, stand fast in him. Stand in that divine faith which he is the author of in you, and don’t get entangled with the yoke of bondage. For the ministry of Christ Jesus and his teaching brings into liberty and freedom; but the ministry that is of man, and by man, which stands in the will of man, brings into bondage and under the shadow of death and darkness. Therefore none can be ministers of Christ Jesus but in the eternal spirit, which was before the scriptures were given forth; for if they have not his spirit, they are none of his. Though they may have his light to condemn them that hate it, yet they can never bring any into unity and fellowship in the spirit, unless they are in it; for the seed of God is a burdensome stone to the selfish, fleshly, earthly will, which reigns in its own knowledge and understanding that must perish, and [reigns in] its own wisdom that is devilish. The spirit of God is grieved, vexed, and quenched with what brings into the fleshly bondage; and what wars against the spirit of God must be mortified by it; for the flesh lusts against the spirit, and the spirit against the flesh, and these are contrary to each other. The flesh would have its liberty, and the spirit would have its liberty; but the spirit is to have its liberty, and not the flesh. Therefore if you quench the spirit, join to the flesh, and be servants of it, then you are judged and tormented by the spirit; but if you join to the spirit, and serve God in it, you have liberty and victory over the flesh and its works.

* Site Editor's Note: While Christ's blood sacrifice made the Mosaic Law obsolete, the inner law on every man's heart is still alive, never cancelled, (which inner law includes the moral core of the Mosaic Law); and this inner law, by which all men shall be judged, Romans 2:14-16, must be obeyed. Until you can hear the Voice of the Lord and follow it, God's law that is written on every man's heart is your schoolmaster; it makes us feel bad when we lie or steal. This law of God that is on every man's heart  includes the moral core of the external, Mosaic Law: do not steal, do not lie, do not covet, do not murder, do not commit adultery, honor your parents, and love your neighbor as yourself, do unto others as you have the do for you, etc. Every man will be judged by God according to this inner law; no man is excused from this law for any reason. The law sounds out what sins you must stop and motivates you to seek the Lord's grace for removal of sin, which you obtain by coming to Christ, sitting in humble silence as you listen and watch patiently waiting for Him to speak, hearing Him, and with the true faith in whom you are hearing, obeying him. The Lord commands you to repent from some evil behavior, and with your obedience, He removes from you even the desire for that sin. Paul further tells us: if (and when) you are led (prompted, ordered, commanded) by the Spirit, you are not under the law, Gal 5:18. See Until Your Words and Deeds are Prompted by God, You Must Obey the Inner Law on the Heart of Every Man for more.

As you obey the commands you hear the Lord speak to you, you grow in the Life of God, until the Light appears in your heart. Peter explains this rising of the Light: And we heard this voice that came from heaven, when we were with him on the holy mount. so [like we heard God's voice from heaven on the mount] we have the more sure prophetic word [the word in your heart]; to which you do well to pay attention, as to a light that shines in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star [Jesus] rises in your hearts. 2 Pet 1:18-19.

Therefore, keep in the daily cross, the power of God, by which you may witness all that to be crucified which is contrary to the will of God, and which shall not come into his kingdom. These things are here mentioned and opened for information, exhortation, and comfort to others, as the Lord opened them unto me in that day. In that day I wondered that the children of Israel should murmur for water and food, for I could have fasted long without murmuring or minding victuals. But I was judged at other times, that I was not content to sometimes be without the water and bread of life that I might learn to know how to want, and how to abound.

I heard of a woman in Lancashire, who had fasted two and twenty days, and I traveled to see her; but when I arrived, I saw she was under a temptation. When I had spoken to her what I had from the Lord,* I left her, her father being high in profession. Passing on, I went among the professors at Duckenfield and Manchester, where I stayed awhile and declared truth among them. There were some convinced, who received the Lord's teaching, by which they were confirmed and stood in the truth. The professors were in a rage, all pleading for sin and imperfection; and could not endure to hear talk of perfection, or of a holy and sinless life. But the Lord's power was over all; though they were chained under darkness and sin, which they pleaded for, and quenched the tender thing in them.

* Site Editor's Note: When I had spoken to her what I had from the Lord. Just as Jesus only spoke as the Father told him to speak, Fox only spoke the words he heard the Lord tell him to speak, not his own words; all true ministers only speak what they are instructed to say by the Spirit just before speaking.

About this time there was a great meeting of the Baptists at Broughton, in Leicestershire, with some that had separated from them; and people of other ideas went there, and I went also. Not many of the Baptists came, but many other people were there; and the Lord opened my mouth,* and his everlasting truth was declared among them, and the power of the Lord was over them all. In that day the Lord's power began to spring. I had great openings in the scriptures, and several were convinced in those areas of the country and were turned from darkness to light, and from the power of satan unto God; they received his power, and by it many were raised up to praise God. When I reasoned with professors and other people, some would be convinced and maintain their faith.

* Site Editor's Note: The Lord opened my mouth. Jesus said, "He who speaks from himself seeks his own glory; but he who seeks the glory of the One who sent him, that man is true, and there is no unrighteousness in him." John 7:18

Still, I was sometimes under great temptations, and my inward sufferings were heavy; but I could find no one to tell about my condition except to the Lord alone, unto whom I cried night and day. I went back into Nottinghamshire, where the Lord showed me that the natures of those things which were destructive in the outside world were also within in the hearts and minds of evil men: the natures of dogs, swine, vipers, of Sodom, and Egypt, Pharaoh, Cain, Ishmael, Esau, etc. The natures of these I saw within, though people had been looking without. I cried to the Lord, saying, 'Why should I be in this condition, seeing I was never addicted to commit those evils?' And the Lord answered, ‘It was needful I should have a sense of all conditions, how else should I speak to all conditions?’ In this I saw the infinite love of God. I saw also, that there was an ocean of darkness and death; but an infinite ocean of light and love, which flowed over the ocean of darkness. In that also I saw the infinite love of God, and I had great openings. As I was walking by the steeple house side in the town of Mansfield, the Lord said to me, What people trample on must be your food.' And as the Lord spoke he opened to me, that people and professors trampled on the life, even the life of Christ was trampled on; they fed on words, and fed one another with words, but trampled on the life, and trampled under foot the blood of the son of God, which blood was my life; and they lived in their arrogant opinions talking of him. It seemed strange to me at the first, that I should feed on what the high professors trampled on; but the Lord opened it clearly to me by his eternal spirit and power.

Then people from far and near came to see me, and I was fearful of being drawn out by them; yet I was told to give them understandings and openings. A man named Brown had great prophecies and visions about me as he lay on his deathbed. He spoke openly that I was going to be made instrumental by the Lord to his work. And he spoke of others saying that they would come to nothing; which was fulfilled on some, who were then famous. When this man was buried, a great work of the Lord fell upon me, to the admiration of many, who thought I had been dead; and many came to see me in that fourteen day period. I was very much altered in appearance and body as if my body had been newly formed or changed. While I was in that condition, I had a sense and discerning given me by the Lord. Through this discerning I saw plainly that when many people talked of God and of Christ, it was the serpent speaking in them; but this was hard to accept. Yet the work of the Lord continued in some.  My sorrows and troubles began to wear off, and tears of joy dropped from me, so that I could have wept day and night with tears of joy to the Lord, in humility and brokenness of heart. I saw into infinite which was without end, things which cannot be uttered, and of the greatness and infiniteness of the love of God, which cannot be expressed by words. For I had been brought through the very ocean of darkness and death, and through and over the power of satan, by the eternal glorious power of Christ; I was even brought through that darkness that covers over all the world, which chains down all, and shuts up all in the death. The same eternal power of God which brought me through these things, was what afterwards shook the nations, priests, professors, and people. Then I could say that I had been in spiritual Babylon, Sodom, Egypt, and the grave; but by the eternal power of God I had come out of it, was brought over it, and by the power of it into the power of Christ. And I saw the harvest white, and the seed of God lying thick in the ground, like wheat spread in planting on the soil, and there was no one  to gather it; I mourned with tears at this absence of gatherers. A report went abroad of me that I was a young man who had a discerning spirit; at which time many came to me from far and near, professors, priests, and people. The Lord's power appeared in me, and I had great openings and prophecies, and spoke to them about the things of God, which they heard with attention and silence, and went away and spread the fame of my teachings. Then the tempter came and set upon me again, charging me, that I had sinned against the holy spirit; but I could not tell in what. Then Paul's condition came before me, how after he had been taken up into the third heavens, and seen things not lawful to be uttered, and how a messenger of satan was sent to buffet him. Thus by the power of Christ I got over that temptation also.

In the year 1648, as I was sitting in a Friend's house in Nottinghamshire, (for by this time the power of God had opened the hearts of some to receive the word of life and reconciliation), I saw there was a great crack to go throughout the earth, and a great smoke following the trail of the crack, and that after the crack there should be a great earthquake. This was the earth in people's hearts, which was to be shaken and quaked before the seed of God was raised out of the earth. And it was so; for the Lord's power began to shake them, and great meetings we began to have, and a mighty power and work of God there was among people, to the astonishment of both people and priests.

There was a meeting of priests and professors at a justice's house, and I went among them. Here they discussed how Paul said he had not known sin but by the law, which said, ‘You shall not covet,' and they stated that was the outward law spoken of by Paul. But I told them Paul spoke that after he was convinced; for he had the outward law before, and was raised up in it, when he was in the lust of persecution; but this was the law of God in his mind* that he served, which the law in his members warred against; for that which he thought had been life to him, proved death. So the more sober of the priests and professors yielded, and consented that it was not the outward law, but the inward law, which showed the inward lust which Paul spoke of after he was convinced; for the outward law took hold of the outward action, but the inward law of the inward lust.

* Site Editor's Note: Every man has God's moral laws written on his heart. And every man will be judged by the thoughts of his mind and conscience, all of which are recorded in the man. This is the inward law that makes every man feel bad when he lies or steals, (unless he has seared his conscience with too many violations). The inner law's moral laws exceed the Mosaic, external moral laws for as Jesus said, he came to fulfill the law; and then He told us how it was to be strengthened, which the inner law reflects. This strengthened inner law can be understood to have been violated anytime you exhibit a fruit of the flesh, which includes: sexual immorality, uncleanness, covetousness, filthiness, foolish talking, jesting, profanity, adultery, lack of restraint, sorcery, hatred, arguments, jealousies, rage, selfish ambition, divisiveness, envies, murders, drunkenness, revelries (partying), evil thoughts, fornications, wickedness, deceit, blasphemy, pride, anger, boasting, flattery, immodesty, immorality, and foolishness. Any of these disqualify all men from heaven.

From the Word of the Lord within: "Be on your guard at all times to be sure your words do not reflect the fruits of the flesh. You must have a devotion to the law that is on every man's heart; you must listen; and you must obey."

For when the Gentiles, who do not have the law, do [obey] by instinct the things contained in the law, these men who do not have the law, are a law to themselves.
Who show the work of the law written in their hearts, and their conscience also bears witness; while their thoughts accuse or else excuse them.
All this occurs in the day when God will judge the secrets of men's hearts by Jesus Christ, according to my gospel. Rom 2:14-16

A man is subject to this inner law written on his heart until his selfish, evil spirit has been crucified on the inward cross of self-denial; then, and only then, a man is dead to the law. Then a man no longer walks by his carnal mind or evil imagination; instead that man is led by the Spirit in what to do and what to say.

After this I went again to Mansfield, where was a great meeting of professors and people; and I was moved to pray; and the Lord's power was so great, that the house seemed to be shaken. When I had done, some of the professors said, ‘It was now as in the days of the apostles, when the house was shaken where they were.’ After I had prayed, one of the professors would pray; which brought deadness and a veil over them. Others of the professors were grieved at him, and told him, ‘it was a temptation upon him.’ Then he came to me, and desired that I would pray again; but I could not pray in man's will.

Site Editor's Note: He was “moved” by the Lord to pray with words the Lord told him to pray, and those words, spoken from the Spirit, had power to shake the house; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit... Eph 6:18. Fox could not pray in his or any other man's will, for such prayers were from the carnal mind of man, which is enmity against God and cannot be subject to the law of God, Rom 8:7, 2:14-16,7:1

Soon after, there was another great meeting of professors, and a captain named Amor Stoddard came in. They were discussing of the blood of Christ. And as they were discussing of it, I saw through the immediate opening of the invisible spirit, the blood of Christ; and I cried out among them, saying, ‘Do you not see the blood of Christ? See it in your hearts, to sprinkle your hearts and consciences from dead works, to serve the living God.’ For I saw it, the blood of the new covenant, how it came into the heart. This startled the professors, who would have the blood only outside them, and not in them. But captain Stoddard was reached, and said, 'Let the youth speak, hear the youth speak;' when he saw they tried overcome me with their many words.

There were also a company of priests that were looked upon to be tender; one of their names was Kellet, and several tender people went to hear them. I was moved to go after them, and told them mind the Lord's teaching in their inward parts. That priest Kellet was against parsonages then, but afterwards he obtained a great one, and turned a persecutor.

Now after I had some service in these parts, I went through Derbyshire into my own country Leicestershire again, and several tender people were convinced. Passing there, I met with a great company of professors in Warwickshire, who were praying and shouting the scriptures in the fields. They gave the bible to me, and I opened it to the fifth of Matthew, where Christ expounded the law; and I opened the inward state to them, and outward state; upon which they fell into a fierce argument and then left, but the Lord's power got ground.

Then I heard of a great meeting to be at Leicester for a debate, where Presbyterians, Independents, Baptists, and common prayer men, were said to be all participants. The meeting was in a steeple house; and I was moved by the Lord God to go there, and be among them. I heard their discussion and reasonings, some being in pews, and the priest in the pulpit, many of people being gathered together. At last one woman asked a question out of Peter, what that birth was, namely being ‘born again of incorruptible seed, by the word of God, that lives and abides forever' The priest said to her, ‘I do not permit a woman to speak in the church;' though he had before given liberty for any to speak. Then I was swept up as in a rapture, in the Lord's power; and I stepped up, and asked the priest, ‘Do you call this place (the steeple house) a church? or ‘Do you call this mixed multitude a church?’ For the woman asked a question, and he ought to have answered it, having given liberty for any to speak. But instead of answering me, he asked me, what a church was? I told him, the church was the pillar and ground of truth, made up of living stones, living members, a spiritual household, which Christ was the head of; but he was not the head of a mixed multitude, or of an old house made up of lime, stones, and wood. This set them all on fire. The priest came down from his pulpit, and others out of their pews, and the dispute there was cut off. But I went to a great inn and there debated the matter of “church” with the priests and professors of all sorts, and they were all enraged. But I maintained the true church, and the true head of it, over the heads of them all, until they all gave out and fled away. One man seemed loving, and appeared for awhile to join with me; but he soon turned against me, and joined with a priest, in pleading for infant baptism, though he himself had been a Baptist before; so he left me alone. However, there were several convinced that day; and the woman who asked the question was convinced along with her family; and the Lord's power and glory shined over all.

After this I returned into Nottinghamshire again, and went into the Vale of Beavor. As I went, I preached repentance to the people, and there were many convinced in the Vale of Beavor in many towns; for I stayed some weeks among them. One morning, as I was sitting by the fire, a great cloud came over me, and a temptation beset me; and I sat still. And it was said, ‘All things come by nature.’ And the elements and stars came over me, so that I was in a manner quite clouded with it. But as I sat still and said nothing, the people of the house perceived nothing. And as I sat still under it and let it alone, a living hope and a true voice arose in me, which said, 'There is a living God who made all things.' Immediately the cloud and temptation vanished away, and life rose over it all; my heart was glad, and I praised the living God. After some time I met with some people who had such a belief that there was no God, but that all things come by nature. And I had a great dispute with them, and overturned them, and made some of them confess, that there is a living God. Then I saw that it was good that I had gone through that exercise. We had great meetings in those parts; for the power of the Lord broke through in that side of the country. Returning into Nottinghamshire, I found there a company of shattered Baptists, and others. The Lord's power formed mightily, and gathered many of them. Afterwards I went to Mansfield and the area; where the Lord's power was wonderfully manifested both at Mansfield, and other towns in the area. In Derbyshire the mighty power of God formed in a wonderful manner. At Eton, a town near Derby, there was a meeting of Friends, where appeared such a mighty power of God that they were greatly shaken, and many mouths were opened in the power of the Lord God. And many were moved by the Lord to go to steeple houses, to the priests, and to the people, to declare the everlasting truth unto them.

At a certain time when I was at Mansfield there was a session of the justices about hiring servants; and it was upon me from the Lord to go and speak to the justices, that they should not oppress the servants in their wages. So I walked towards the inn where they were holding their session; but finding a company of fiddlers there, I did not go in, but thought to come in the morning, when I might have a more serious opportunity to discuss it with them, not thinking the present to be an appropriate time. But when I came again in the morning, they were gone, and I was even struck blind so that I could not see. I inquired of the innkeeper where the justices were to be that day? He told me they were to have a session at a town eight miles away. And my sight began to come to me again; and I went and ran in that direction as fast as I could. When I came to the house where they and their many servants were, I exhorted the justices not to oppress the servants in their wages, but to do what was right and just to them; and I exhorted the servants to do their duties, and serve honestly, etc. They all received my exhortation kindly, for I was moved by the Lord to speak to them.

Moreover, I was moved to go to several courts and steeple houses at Mansfield and other places, to warn them to cease oppression and oaths, and to turn from deceit to the Lord, and do justly. Particularly at Mansfield, after I had been at a court there, I was moved to go and speak to one of the wickedest men in the country, one who was a common drunkard, a noted whore master, and a rhyme maker; and in the dread of the mighty God I reproved him for his evil courses. When I was done speaking and left him, he came after me, and told me that he was so smitten when I spoke to him that he had scarcely any strength left in him. So this man was convinced, turned from his wickedness, and remained an honest, sober man, to the astonishment of the people who had known him before. Thus the work of the Lord went forward, and many were turned from darkness to light, within the compass of these three years, 1646, 1647, and 1648. Many meetings of Friends; in several places, were then gathered to God's teaching, by his light, spirit, and power; for the Lord's power broke forth daily more and more wonderfully.

Now I came up in spirit, through the flaming sword,* into the paradise of God. All things were new, and all the creation gave another smell unto me than before, beyond what words can utter. I knew nothing but pureness, innocence, and righteousness, being renewed up into the image of God by Christ Jesus; so that I came up to the state of Adam, which he was in before he fell. The creation was open to me; and it was showed me how all things had their names given them, according to their nature and virtue. I was at a stand in my mind, whether I should practice medicine for the good of mankind, seeing the nature and virtues of the creatures were so opened to me by the Lord. But I was immediately taken up in spirit, to see into another or more steadfast state than Adam's in innocence, even into a state in Christ Jesus, that should never fall.** And the Lord showed me, that such as were faithful to him, in the power and light of Christ, should come up into that state in which Adam was before he fell; in which the admirable works of the creation, and the virtues of that may be known, through the openings of that divine word of wisdom and power by which they were made. Great things did the Lord lead me into, and wonderful depths were opened unto me, beyond what can by words be declared; but as people come into subjection to the spirit of God, and grow up in the image and power of the Almighty, they may receive the word of wisdom that opens all things, and come to know the hidden unity in the Eternal Being.

Site Editor's Note:
*So [God] drove out the man [Adam and Eve out of paradise, the Garden of Eden]; and He placed at the east of the Garden of Eden the cherubim  and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep and guard the way to the tree of life. Gen 3:24

** There are two steps in perfection through the grace of Christ: 1st) to be raised up to the perfection of Adam and Eve in paradise, but still capable of falling to temptation, and 2nd) to be raised up to union with Christ Jesus, an everlasting perfection, which is incapable of falling to sin or temptation. Stephen Crisp, another eminent early Quaker, writes further of this two-step perfection:

For you know while the vessel is filled with wrath, envy, or with unrighteousness of any kind, such are not yet fit for the glory of God to shine forth in. When that is removed out by judgment; and Zion is set free from oppression, then the creature returns to God a pure vessel in the righteousness that was before the fall. So a man or woman may come to Adam's state that he was in before he fell, which was without sin. Against such the judgment of God does not go forth, but they have peace with God, and fellowship in what is pure, before sin and transgression were. Those who come to this state, may be entangled again, as was Eve; and if they do not watch, they may be entangled again; but if such are faithful to the power that redeemed them from the sin, and in the power resist the temptation, then such receive the seal of eternal life in Christ Jesus, who never fell, though he was tempted, and so come to an establishment in him who never changes.

For additional information on the two stages of perfection, see Footnote 6 to Gal 5:24 in this site's on-line Bible.

Thus I traveled on in the Lord's service, as he led me. When I came to Nottingham, the mighty power of God was there among Friends. From there I went to Clauson, in Leicestershire, in the vale of Beavor, and the mighty power of God appeared there also, in several towns and villages where Friends were gathered. While I was there, the Lord opened to me three things, relating to those three great professions in the world, medicine, religion, (so called), and law. He showed me, that the physicians were out of the wisdom of God, by which the creation were made; and they did not know the benefits of the things created, because they were out of the word of wisdom, by which they were made. And he showed me that the priests were out of the true faith, which Christ is the author of; the faith which purifies, gives victory, and brings people to have access to God, by which they please God; the mystery of which faith is held in a pure conscience. He also showed me that the lawyers were out of the equity, out of the true justice, and out of the law of God, which went over the first transgression, and over all sin, and answered the spirit of God that was grieved and transgressed in man. And that these three, the physicians, the priests, and the lawyers, ruled the world out of the wisdom, out of the faith, and out of the equity and law of God; the one pretending the cure of the body, the other the cure of the soul, and the third the protection of the property of the people. But I saw they were all out of the wisdom, out of the faith, and out of the equity and perfect law of God. And as the Lord opened these things to me, I felt his power to be over of all, by which all might be reformed, if they would only receive and bow to it.

The priests might be reformed, and brought into the true faith, which is the gift of God. The lawyers might be reformed, and brought into the law of God, which answers that of God, which is transgressed, in every one, and brings to love one's neighbor as himself. This lets man see that if he injures his neighbor, he also injures himself; and this teaches him to do unto others as he would have them do unto him. The physicians might be reformed, and brought into the wisdom of God by which all things were made and created; that they might receive a right knowledge of the created things, and understand the benefits of them, which was placed in them by the word of wisdom, by which they were made and are upheld. Much was shown me concerning these things; how all were out of the wisdom of God, and out of the righteousness and holiness that man at the first was made in. But as all believe in the light, and walk in the light which Christ has enlightened every man, so they become children of the light and of the day of Christ. In his day all things are seen, visible and invisible, by the divine light of Christ, the spiritual heavenly man, by whom all things were made and created.

I saw concerning the priests and ministers, that although they stood in  deceit, and acted by the dark power which both they and their people were kept under; yet they were not the greatest deceivers spoken of in the scriptures, for they had not come so far spiritually as many of those of scripture had come. But the Lord opened to me who the greatest deceivers were, and how far they could progress spiritually; even those who came as far as Cain, to hear the voice of God; those who came out of Egypt, and through the Red Sea, to praise God on the banks of the seashore; those could speak by experience of God's miracles and wonders; those who had progressed as far as Corah, Dathan, and their company; those who had come as far as Balaam, who could speak the word of the Lord, who heard his voice and knew it, and knew his spirit, and could see the star of Jacob, and the godliness of Israel's tent; the second birth, which no enchantment could prevail against. These that could speak so much of their experiences of God, and yet turned from God’s spirit and the word, and went into the opposition; these were and would be the great deceivers, far beyond the priests. Likewise among Christians, such as should preach in Christ's name, should work miracles, cast out devils, and go as far as a Cain, a Corah, and a Balaam in the gospel times; these were and would be the great deceivers. They who could speak of experiences of Christ and God, but did not live in the life of God, these were they who led the world after them, who got the form of godliness, but denied the power; who inwardly devoured from the spirit, and brought people into the form of godliness, but persecuted them that were in the power, as Cain did; and ran greedily after the error of Balaam, through covetousness, loving the wages of unrighteousness, as Balaam did. These followers of Cain, Corah, and Balaam, have brought the world, since the apostles' days to be like a sea. Such as these I saw might deceive now, as they did in former ages; “but it is impossible for them to deceive the elect, who were chosen in Christ, who was before the world began,” and before the deceiver was; though others may be deceived in their openings and prophecies, not keeping their minds to the Lord Jesus Christ, who does open and reveal to his.

I saw the state of those, both priests and people who read the scriptures and cried out much against Cain, Esau, Judas, and other wicked men of former times, mentioned in the holy scriptures; but do not see the nature of Cain, of Esau, of Judas, and those others, in themselves. These said, it was “they, they, they,” that were the bad people; always applying it to others and not themselves; but when by the light and spirit of truth, some of these came to see into themselves, then they could say, “I, I, I,” it is I myself, that have been the Ishmael, the Esau, etc. For then they saw the nature of wild Ishmael in themselves; the nature of Cain, Esau, Corah, Balaam, and of the son of perdition in themselves, sitting above all that is called God in them. So I saw, it was the fallen man that had gotten into the scriptures, and was condemning others with those before mentioned natures. And they focused on the backsliding Jews, calling them the sturdy oaks, tall cedars, fat bulls of Bashan, wild heifers, vipers, serpents, etc. And charging them, that it was they that closed their eyes, stopped their ears, hardened their hearts, and were dull of hearing ; that it was they that hated the light, rebelled against it, quenched the spirit, vexed and grieved it, walked despitefully against the spirit of grace, and turned the grace of God into wantonness; that it was they that resisted the holy ghost, got the form of godliness, and turned against the power; and that they were the inwardly ravening wolves who had gotten the sheep's clothing; and that they were the wells without water, clouds without rain, trees without fruit, etc. But when these, who were so much taken up with finding fault with others, and thought themselves clear from these things, would look into themselves, and with the light of Christ thoroughly search themselves, they might see enough of these conditions in themselves. Then the cry would not be “he or they” are evil, but “I and we” are found in these conditions.

I also saw how people read the scriptures without a right sense of them and without duly applying them to their own states. For when they read that death reigned from Adam to Moses; that the law and the prophets were until John; and that the least in the kingdom is greater than John; they read these things as not applicable to them, and applied them to others, (and the things were true of others), but they did not turn inside to find the truth of these things in themselves. As these things were opened in me, I saw death reigned over them from Adam to Moses; from the entrance into transgression, until they came to the Ministry of Condemnation, which restrains people from sin that brings death. When the ministry of Moses is passed through, the ministry of the prophets comes to be read and understood, which reaches through the figures, types, and shadows unto John, the greatest prophet born of a woman; whose ministry prepares the way of the Lord, by bringing down the exalted mountains, and making straight paths. As this ministry is passed through, an entrance comes to be known into the everlasting kingdom. I saw plainly, that none could read Moses correctly without Moses's spirit, by which he saw how man was in the image of God in paradise, how he fell, how death came over him, and how all men have been under this death. I saw how Moses received the pure law, that went over all transgressors; and how the clean beasts, which were figures and types, were offered up, when the people came into the righteous law that went over the first transgression. Moses and the prophets saw through the types and figures, and beyond them, and saw Christ the great prophet who was to come to fulfill them. I saw that none could read John's words correctly, and with a true understanding of them, but in and with the same divine spirit by which John spoke them; and by his burning, shining light which is sent from God. For by that spirit their crooked natures might be made straight, their rough natures smooth, and the man of greed and man of violence in them might be cast out; and those that had been hypocrites might come to bring forth fruits suitable for repentance, and their mountain of sin and earthliness might be leveled, and their valley filled in them, that there might be a smooth, level way prepared for the Lord in them; and then the least in the kingdom is greater than John. But all must first know the voice crying in the wilderness in their hearts, which through transgression has become as a wilderness. Thus I saw it was an easy matter to say, death reigned from Adam to Moses; and that the law and the prophets were until John; and that the least in the kingdom is greater than John; but none could know how death reigned from Adam to Moses, etc. but by the same holy spirit which Moses, the prophets, and John were in. They could not know the spiritual meaning of Moses, the prophets, and John's words, nor see their path and travels, much less to see past them, and to the end of them into the kingdom, unless they had the spirit and light of Jesus; nor could they know the words of Christ and of his apostles without his spirit. But as man comes through by the spirit and power of God to Christ, (who fulfils the types, figures, shadows, promises, and prophecies that were of Him), and is led by the holy spirit into the truth and substance of the scriptures, sitting down in him who is the author and end of them, then are they read and understood with profit and great delight.

Moreover, the Lord God let me see, when I was brought up into his image in righteousness and holiness, and into the state of the paradise of God how Adam was made a living soul; and also to the stature of Christ, the mystery that had been hid from ages and generations; which things are hard to be uttered, and cannot be borne by many. For of all the sects in Christendom (so called) that I discoursed with, I found none that could bear to be told that anyone could spiritually grow to Adam's perfection, (that is into that image of God, and righteousness and holiness that Adam was in before he fell), to be clean, pure, and without sin as he was. Therefore, how would they be able to bear being told that any should spiritually grow up to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; when it threatens them  to hear that any shall come, while upon earth, into the same power and spirit that the prophets and apostles were in? Though it is an absolute truth, that none can understand the Apostle’s writings correctly without the same spirit by which they were written.

The Lord God opened to me by his invisible power, how that ‘every man was enlightened by the divine light of Christ.’ I saw it shine through all, and that they that believed in it came out of condemnation to the light of life, and became the children of it; but they that hated it and did not believe in it, were condemned by it, though they made a profession of Christ. This I saw in the pure openings of the light without the help of any man; neither did I then know where to find it in the scriptures; though afterwards, searching the scriptures, I found it. For I saw in that light and spirit which was before the scriptures were given forth, and which led the holy men of God to give them forth, that all must come to that spirit, if they would know God or Christ, or the scriptures correctly, which they that gave them forth were led and taught by.

But I observed a dullness and drowsy heaviness upon people, which I wondered about; for sometimes, when I would set myself to sleep, my mind went over all to the beginning, in what is from everlasting to everlasting. I saw death was to pass over this sleepy, heavy state, and I told people they must come to witness death to that sleepy, heavy nature, and a cross to it in the power of God, that their minds and hearts might be on things above.

Once as I was walking in the fields, the Lord said to me, 'your name is written in the Lamb's book of life, which was before the foundation of the world,' and as the Lord spoke it, I believed and saw it in the new birth. Some time after, the Lord commanded me to go abroad into the world which was like a briery, thorny wilderness. When I came in the Lord's mighty power with the word of life into the world, the world swelled, and made a noise like the great raging waves of the sea. Priests and professors, magistrates and people, were all like a sea when I came to proclaim the day of the Lord among them, and to preach repentance to them.

I was sent to turn people from darkness to the light, that they might receive Christ Jesus; for to as many as should receive him in his light, I saw he would give power to become (not automatically be, John 1:12) the sons of God; which I had obtained by receiving Christ. I was to direct people to the spirit, that gave forth the scriptures, by which (spirit) they might be led into all truth, and so up to Christ and God, as the authors of the scriptures had been who spoke and wrote them. I was to turn them to the grace of God, and to the truth in the heart, which came by Jesus; that by this grace they might be taught, which would bring them salvation, that their hearts might be established by it, their words might be seasoned, and all might come to know their salvation near. For I saw that Christ had died for all men, was a sacrificial offering for all, and had enlightened all men and women with his divine and saving light; and that none could be true believers, but those that believed in the light. I saw that the grace of God, which brings salvation, had appeared to all men, and that the manifestation of the spirit of God was given to every man, with which to profit. These things I did not see by the help of man, nor by the letter, though they are written in the letter; but I saw them in the light of the Lord Jesus Christ, and by his immediate spirit and power, as did the holy men of God by whom the holy scriptures were written. Yet I had no slight esteem of the holy scriptures, they were very precious to me; for I was in that spirit by which they were issued; and what the Lord opened in me, I afterwards found was in agreement with them. I could speak much of these things, and many volumes might be written; but all would prove too short to set forth the infinite love, wisdom, and power of God, in preparing, fitting, and furnishing me for the service he had appointed me to; letting me see the depths of Satan, on the one hand, and opening to me, on the other hand, the divine mysteries of his own everlasting kingdom.

When the Lord God and his son Jesus Christ sent me forth into the world to preach his everlasting gospel and kingdom, I was glad that I was commanded to turn people to that inward light, spirit, and grace, by which all might know their salvation and their way to God; even that divine spirit which would lead them into all truth, and which I infallibly knew would never deceive any.

But with and by this divine power and spirit of God, and the light of Jesus, I was to bring people off from all their own ways, to Christ the new and living way; from their churches, which men had made and gathered, to the church in God, the general assembly written in heaven, which Christ is the head of; and off from the world's teachers made by men, to learn of Christ, who is the way, the truth, and the life, of whom the Father said, 'This is my beloved son, listen to him;' and off from all the world's worships, to know the spirit of truth in the inward parts, and to be led thereby, that in it they might worship the Father of spirits, who seeks such to worship him; those who do not worship in his spirit do not know what they worship. I was to bring people off from all the world's religions, which are in vain; that they might know the pure religion, might visit the fatherless, the widows, and the strangers, and keep themselves from the spots of the world. Then there would not be so many beggars; the sight of whom often grieved my heart, as it denoted so much hard heartedness among those that professed the name of Christ. I was to bring them off from all the world's fellowships, prayers, and songs, which stood in forms without power, that their fellowship might be in the holy spirit, the eternal spirit of God; that they might pray in the holy spirit, sing in the spirit, and with the grace that comes by Jesus; making melody in their hearts to the Lord, who has sent his beloved son to be their savior, caused his heavenly sun to shine upon all the world, and through them all; and his heavenly rain to fall upon the just and the unjust, (as his outward rain does fall, and his outward sun does shine on all), which is God's unspeakable love to the world. I was to bring people off from Jewish ceremonies, from heathenish fables, from men's inventions and windy doctrines, by which they blew the people about, this way and the other way, from sect to sect; and from all their poor underpinnings, with their schools and colleges for making ministers of Christ, who are indeed ministers of their own making, but not of Christ's; and from all their images, crosses, and sprinkling of infants, with all their holy days, (so called), and all their vain traditions, which they had got up since the apostles' days, which the Lord's power was against. In the dread and authority of that was I moved to declare against them all, and against all who preached and not freely, as being such who had not received freely from Christ.

Moreover, when the Lord sent me into the world, he commanded me do not 'put off my hat' to any, high or low; and I was required to thee and thou all men and women, without any respect to rich or poor, great or small. And as I traveled up and down, I was not to greet with people ‘good morrow,' or 'good evening,' neither was I allowed bow or scrape with my leg to anyone. This made the sects and professions rage. But the Lord's power carried me over all to his glory, and many came to be turned to God in a little time; for the heavenly day of the Lord sprang from on high, and broke forth quickly; by the light of which many came to see where they were spiritually.

Site Editor's Note : At this time in England, hats were worn in church, the clergy preached in them, they were worn at dinner, and, as a rule, more generally than in modern times. The few occasions when hats were taken off, (to uncover the head), were more distinctly occasions of respect. Showing partiality to certain people is a sin, James 2:9. A son must always uncover before his father, every one uncovered before the king, and uncovered to anyone of class or position such as the nobility. The Quakers called this the hat-honor, which they refused to give to man, including to judges in court; resulting in their being fined or imprisoned for such failure to uncover in honor. They removed their hats only in prayer as an act of worship. Thus they reversed the hat-honor from what society was paying to man and refusing to God, to be paying to God and refusing to man.

In Fox's time, the use of thee and thou was taught in the schools as proper forms of singular address. People of lower class were addressed in the singular,  thee and thou. People of the upper class wanted to be addressed in the plural, you, which was to honor them. Showing partiality to certain people is a sin, James 2:9. The honoring of "important" people with the plural address is what God "laid to the dust." Today, the you is taught as singular in all the schools; it is no longer a form of honor to address any person as you. You instead of thou is also in the majority of Bible translations available today, including the New King James Version.

But Oh! The rage that was in the priests, magistrates, professors, and people of all persuasions; but especially in priests and professors; for though "thou" to a single person was according to their grammar books, grammar rules, and according to the bible, yet they could not bear to hear it; and because I could not put off my hat to them, it set them all into a rage. But the Lord showed me that it was an earthly honor from below, which he would lay in the dust and stain; an honor which proud flesh looked for, but sought not the honor which comes from God only. That it was an honor invented by men in the fall and in the alienation from God, who were offended if it was not given them; yet they expected to be regarded as saints, church-members, and great christians; but Christ said, ‘How can you believe, who receive honor one of another, and seek not the honor that comes from God only?‘And I (said Christ) receive not the honor of men.' Showing that men have an honor which they will receive and give, but Christ will have none of it. This is the honor which Christ will not receive, and which must be laid in the dust. Oh! The scorn, heat, and fury that arose! Oh! The blows, assaults, beatings, and imprisonments that we underwent for not putting off our hats to men! For that soon tried all men's patience and sobriety, however little it was. Some had their hats violently plucked off and thrown away, so that they were lost to them. The bad language and evil usage we received on this account is hard to be expressed, besides the danger we were sometimes in of losing our lives for this matter, and often threatened or injured by the great professors of Christianity, who by that discovered they were not true believers. And though it was but a small thing in the eye of man, yet a wonderful confusion it brought among all professors and priests; but, blessed be the Lord, many came to see the vanity of that custom of putting off the hat to men, and felt the weight of truth's testimony against it.

About this time I was sorely exercised in going to their courts to cry for justice; in speaking and writing to judges and justices to do justly; in warning such as kept public houses for entertainment, that they should not let people have more drink than would do them good; and in testifying against wakes, feasts, may-games, sports, plays, and shows, which trained up people to vanity and looseness, and led them from the fear of God; and the days set forth for holiness were usually the times when they most dishonored God by these things. In fairs also, and in markets, I was sent to declare against their deceitful merchandise, cheating, and fraud; warning all to deal justly, to speak the truth, to let their yes be yes, and their no be no, and to do unto others as they would have others do unto them; forewarning them of the great and terrible day of the Lord, which would come upon them all. I was moved also to cry against all sorts of music, and against the mountebanks playing tricks on their stages; for they burdened the pure life, and stirred up people's minds to vanity.* I was also very active with schoolmasters and schoolmistresses, warning them to teach children sobriety in the fear of the Lord, that they might not be nursed and trained up in lightness, vanity, and neglect of restraint. I was told to warn masters and mistresses, fathers and mothers, in private families, to take care that their children and servants might be trained up in the fear of the Lord, and that they should be examples and patterns of sobriety and virtue to them. For I saw that as the Jews were to teach their children the law of God, in the old covenant, and to train them up in it, and their servants, (yes the very strangers were to keep the Sabbath among them, and be circumcised, before they might eat of their sacrifices); so all who made a profession of Christianity should train their children and servants in the new covenant of light, Christ Jesus, who is God's salvation to the ends of the earth, that all may know their salvation. And they ought to teach the law of life, the law of the spirit, and the law of love and of faith so that they might be made free from the law of sin and death. And all Christians ought to be circumcised by the spirit, which puts off the body of the sins of the flesh, so that they may come to eat of the heavenly sacrifice, Christ Jesus, that true spiritual food, which none can rightly feed upon but those who have been circumcised by the spirit. Likewise I was opposed the stargazers, who drew people's minds from Christ, the bright and the morningstar, and from the sun of righteousness, by whom the sun, moon, and stars, and all things else were made, who is the wisdom of God, from whom the right knowledge of all things is received.

* Site Editor's Note: Mountebanks sold worthless medicines and cures on stage. George Fox in his doctrinal writings wrote that music not to the glory and praise of God was a distraction. I will amplify that statement to say that music which lets you celebrate the beauty of the creation, the praise for God, or your love for your fellow human beings is good; but Christian music is not pleasing to Him, for it comes from those who don't know Him and it reflects false doctrine.

But the black earthly spirit of the priests wounded my life; and when I heard the bell toll to call people together to the steeple-house, it struck at my life; for it was just like a market bell to gather people together, that the priest might set forth his ware to sale. Oh! The vast sums of money that are gotten by the trade of the selling of the scriptures, and by their preaching, from the highest bishop to the lowest priest! What one other trade in the world is comparable to it? Notwithstanding the scriptures were given forth freely, Christ commanded his ministers to preach freely, and the prophets and apostles denounced judgment against all covetous hirelings and diviners for money. But in this free spirit of the Lord Jesus was I sent forth to declare the word of life and reconciliation freely, that all might come to Christ, who gives freely, and renews up into the image of God, which man and woman were in before they fell, that they might sit down in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus.

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Note and measure your position in Christ compared to the events listed below and testified to above in detail:

Thus ends George Fox’s conversion, and thus begins the most incredible ministry on record. 

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Historical Note from Valiant for the Truth :

The court of the immediate past king, James I was distinguished by extravagance in dress and revelry. It seemed, when that monarch was transferred from the scantily furnished palace of Holyrood to his luxurious quarters in England, that his desire for dress and personal ornament became a perfect frenzy. His courtiers followed in his train. At the accession of the then king, Charles I, the same passion continued. Wearing his hair in long, flowing curls, his dress sparkling with jewels, and redolent with perfume, the Cavalier looked with disdain on the closely cropped hair and sober dress of his Puritan neighbor, and laughingly called him Roundhead. These two names afterwards became the rallying cry on many a bloody battlefield.

While the men thus spent their time and money in the adornment of their persons, the process of dressing a court lady was said to be "as complex and tedious as the fitting out of a man-of-war." The wife of a nobleman of Charles's court, presenting a list of her wants to her husband, declares she will be satisfied with an allowance of £6,000 a year for her own personal requirements, with £10,000 more for jewelry. (This was written in 1880, when a £1000 was worth at least £ 10,000 today.)

This was not the only evil of the day. Such profuse expenditure required liberal means, and gambling, both among men and women, was resorted to as a favorite pursuit. Bribery was also extensively practiced. There was hardly a crime committed which the judge could not be induced to pardon, by the application of liberal bribes. Usurers and pawnbrokers increased to an alarming extent; and many ancient estates were lost to their owners by their extravagant living.

Strong lines of demarcation separated the different classes in society. The nobility looked down on the merchant, and he in his turn disdained the artisan. The mode of addressing them was different. Only a great merchant was worthy to prefix Master or Mr. (the then abbreviation for Master), to his name, and the addition of Esquire would have thrown the court into a tumult. The judge must be termed Most Worshipful, the minister Reverend, and the whole style of conversation was full of unmeaning compliments. Among the country people and mechanics (manual laborers), the pronouns thee and thou were always used, but it was considered a great insult to address a person of higher rank in this manner. He was supposed to embody in his person a consequence equal to two or more ordinary individuals.

Thus a person of higher rank demanded to be addressed as you, and became violent if not so addressed. It is sad to consider that today the word Reverend [as one to be revered, which means worthy of adoration] is only laughed at by astute pundits, instead of the entire population. As for me, I will never address a false prophet, or even a true prophet as Reverend; and a judge is not worthy of being addressed Your Honor, much  less the ridiculous Most Worshipful; he is simply addressed as Judge. We are not to seek the approval of men, only of God; and to address men with flattering titles, is to seek their approval, as well as to show respect (partiality) of persons, which is a sin.

Let me not, I pray you, show partiality to any man, neither let me give flattering titles to man.
For I do not know how to give flattering titles; in so doing my maker would soon take me away. Job 33:21-22


But if you have respect to persons [showing partiality to certain people, not treating everyone equally], you commit sin, and are convicted by the law as transgressors. James 2:9

Beware of men who would have the principal seat in the assembly and love to be greeted in the market with titles such as Reverend [meaning worthy of adoration], Brother, Elder, Bishop, Sister, Prophet, Prophetess, Pastor, Doctor, or worse Father, Teacher, Master , etc.


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