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    To Joyne with such a church (yea pressing soe hard as if he would break open


    the dore) & for what End it concerns himself to consider

    We cannot alsoe but take notice, of what was publickly spoaken viz you gentlemen

    of Rowley have a notable faculty of Exagerating : We have as much if not

    more need to be warned to take heed of Extenuating & makeing little our own or

    Others Sins, which will be found as dissonant from Scripture as the other not to say

    more : The Platform well counsells us as not to be over rigerous in dealing wth

    offendours,[92] soe on the other hand that we daub not with untempered morter or

    heal the hurt of our Brother slightly[93] : However if ther was more Exagerating then

    the Rule will bear, & the nature of the offences, we conceive it might have bin

    told us wherin & some indeavours for our conviction used, before we should have

    bin publickly blamed for it

    A great part of the offences if not the greatest for wch Mr Nelson was censured &

    for wch ye church remaines still offended untill God give him Repentance, The council

    takes noe notice of them nor calls for acknowledgment from him  as.

    1 Ther is noe acknowledgmt in his paper of confession of his falls accusation of Deacon

    Jewitt of dishonesty or unrighteousness in takeing from Mrs Rogers heap 5£ worth of corn

    which was her due & putting it to Mr Phillips his heap This was proved before

    church & council to be a fals accusation, now falls accusers are amongst them that

    make ye last times perilous 2 Tim 3. 2.

    2 It was evil that he dealt not with the Deacon alone for his unrighteousness in 17 years

    time, but behind his back accused him before several : he had confession upon confession

    for a like failure towards himself, and yet all too little to satisfy him, & yet we must

    be satisfied without any, as to both these particulars. ––

    3 That he should noe more regard the Rule, not the good of his Brothers soul but to

    let his unrighteousness lye 17 years & more without dealing with his mote, or once

    telling him off it though he seems in his larg paper to own that he was privy to

    his dishonesty soe long since

    4 we want light as yet to judg any otherwise of his Speeches to Br Leaver (namely If I

    be deceived thers noe god in heaven) then formerly that it was a blasphemous speech

    and the worse in yt he was told by one by another, before he spake those words) yt

    he was certainly deceived, & yt he was soe hath bin plainly proved before church and

    council : And under ys head we find not the council blameing Mr Nelson for having

    his Brother to court, notwithstanding notice he had soe abundantly acknowledged his

    irrregularity in speaking of that blasphemous speech to 2 or 3 before he had dealt

    with himself alone about it, yet would not forgive him though the Rule requires

    it 17 Luke 4 & his covenant bound him to it to walk according to ye Rule this

    was an unchristian unbrotherly part : Ther is rarely a fault yt you goe to law

    one with another, that is, when it may be prevented by full satisfaction for any damage

    sustained in state or name : Mr Nelson was blamed for this act by the court, de-

    =horted from it by Brethren before he went : If it were verily a fault it was verily to be acknowledged Coll 3.13.

    5 As To his prayer the Reverend Council calls them over bold Expressions, we did

    apprehend & still doe that they were over profane; & a Scandelous takeing gods

    name in vayne, whilst he appeals to gods omnisciency that what he accused officer

    and brethren off before god was true (when yr was noe truth in what he accused ym of)

    Alsoe Imprecating Gods revenge upon them, ffor these things to be accounted onely

    overbold Expressions, we understand not the ground of it : Soe much might be sayd

    of the holyest prayer yt ever any meer man made : Abraham in his prayer for So

    dome, several times intreats the lord not to be angry,[94] feering he should be over

    bold with God soe to plead, seing he was but dust and ashes.

    6 As to his actings about the deaf lad, we still conscientiously protest that we look upon


    [92] Cambridge Platform, ch. XIV, sec. IV: “In dealing with an offender, great care is to be taken, that wee be neither overstrict or rigorous, nor too indulgent or remiss; our proceeding herein ought to be with a spirit of meekness . . .”

    [93] See Ezek. 13.

    [94] See Gen. 18, where Abraham bargains in vain with Jehovah to save Sodom from destruction.