View Facsimile


    1678                         179         113


    doe understand not what tenderness to the churches creditt ther is in such passag

    =es : In scripture persons & things usually are denominated from the better part,

    the substance & scope of that paper was to give our grounds why we could not sit

    downe with, nor practise according to the result of the Council. ____

     Wheras it is sayd noe church meeting was regularly warned, I answer I gave notice

    to the whole church by reading the major G: leter, wherin he desires the church would

    give the council a meeting at such a day & hour, & when I had some reading I told ye

    church it was meet to assemble at the day & hour appointed, to attend what God might

    then call us to, not mentioning any place of meeting, because I knew not wher the Counc

    cill would desire us to meet them, whether at Mr Nelsons house, or at the meeting house

     If there had bin any church business about which I was to appoint a church meeting I

    should perhaps have named the place, though that needed not because the church suffi

    tiently knew, that in winterly weather it is at my house: yea sometimes when I have

    mentioned the meeting house as the place of meeting, the season has caused us to alter

    our minds, & to repair to my house: And therfore it is but a pretence in the dissenting

    brethren to say they they knew not wher the meeting should be : If they had bin in

    frame to carry it as brethren should doe, they would have repaired to their officer

    as the major part of the church did, who alsoe might have pleaded ignorance, wher

    the meeting of the church should be, as well as they who soe objected, & I am sorry

    their so seperating themselves should rather be countenanced by the council then


    Suppose I had out of forgetfullness omitted that circumstance of nameing the place ye

    brethren might have come to my house, or have sent some one to inquire wher the

    church should meet (If it were a real doubt to them) rather then seperate themselves

    from their officer & Brethren as they did.

     And wheras it is charged on the Teacher & some of the Brethren (viz ye major

    part of the church) that they decline the advise of the council & therby continue &

    propagate their dissentions we answer

     It is fully Evident that ther was a very smal appearance of dissent in ye church till

    since ye council came, & farr more hopes of repentance in ye offendour, then we have

    grounds to Expect now. –––

     ffor our not comming to ye meeting house when sent for, our grounds why we did not

    come are judged frivilous, but such as they are we leave to your consideration.

     1 we lookt upon the council as not a council to us, but onely called by Mr Nelson

    (how orderly we are not in a capasity to dispute) against the mind of the major part

    of the church, who objected against two neighbouring churches, as understanding they had

    in noe little part Expressed their iudgmt in the case before, we mean some principal

    men, whom we knew would be sent, In particular your self Reverend Mr Cobbett

    did tell me that you heard that we objected your deafness (as we had good ground to do)

    and prejudging the case, but you sayd it was not our objecting should hinder your coming

    I told you, you would find it very difficult to iudg contrary to what you had declar

    =ed to me in writing before: But we look upon these things as an infringment of our

    liberty, who might limit the offendour from calling any that were preposest or offen

    ded with the church or officer before they came : In any Jury or arbitration ther

    is liberty to object against this man or that, & surely a church has noe less liberty

    if ther be iust cause.

     Our coming to the council at their first conveening, in a neighbourly & Xstian

    way to give them the grounds of our proceedings, if it was lookt upon as an ar

    gument that we owned the council as a council to us, or that we were bound

    to appear before them when they appointed, we never intended nor thought any

    such thing, and therfore our not comming the 2d time of your meeting when

    sent for, our church who needed not to have appeared in publick (and are

                  glad[102] they did) at all, have made noe fault (yt we know of)


    [102] Conjectural reading where MS is damaged.