REVELATION OF REVELATIONS
The Revelation of Revelations
Now the holy Ghost brings in Charity, as distinct and more excellent than them all. The holy Inspiration thus opened it, That Charity is of that high Extraction, and so purely descended, that no defiled thing can ever enter it; Its consistency is an invisible Body, as thin as Air, as piercing as a Flame, an all-moving, acting and vigorous Spirit of Power and Life, that can go in and out as an invisible Breath, which no mortal Eye can see, only its force may be felt as a Seraphick Heat, that burns as a Refiners Fire in our Corporality, to the end that it may tinge it with the holy Ghosts property. This is the true and faithful delineation of this perfect thing, called by the Apostle, Charity. Where-ever this comes, it makes all imperfect things flee before it, but it strengthens and confirms every Plant that is sown by the Spirit, and makes them appear above Ground, which have long lain buried under it: It is the King-flower of the whole Paradisiacal Spring, that protects the whole, transmuting all into one entire Body of Love, that doth extend and give forth it self in all spiritual Bountifulness, according to its high Nature and Property. It is not shut up to it self upon any consideration, as to what it possesseth and enjoys; for it holds nothing in Propriety, whatever its Lot is, but all is free to the Disciples of the same descent and birth with himself; this Love cannot with-hold from any of their Necessities, for it seeks not its own. Then it hath also a virtual Power, as made to inherit the best of Riches and Substance of the everlasting Kingdom, to conveigh and freely distribute of this inexhaustable Treasury to impoverished Souls, and to relieve them that are in great Distress; which Power can pass in as an high virtual Balsam, to heal the Wounded, who are under the striking of the Scorpion-Sting of the Serpent. For this Love is a ministering Flame, where holy Passiveness and Humility are as the open-Door for its access, and there cherish and feed it with what its present degree doth require. Charity is furnished with all sorts and stores; it is Gods Steward upon Earth, whom he dare trust with the Care of his Household, who are in spiritual Hunger and Nakedness. It is a most infallible truth, that God will appoint such holy Overseers in his new-born Church, that shall recover the Apostolical Spirit and Power, that hath been lost out of the Earth, and it shall rise as a more bright Morning Star, and multiply it into a Generation that will be all lovely, in which God may see himself. For which end, the Kingdom and Dominion is already come into some, and prospering to this expected degree, treasuring up now for a full Bank in store against that Day, in which our Son of Man will again appear in the Heavens, for the delivering up the Kingdom to the Father, that so God, who is Love, may be all in all. But in order to the accomplishing of this last and finishing Mystery, there shall arise a Melchizedeck Priesthood, which shall know the way into the Holiest of all, concerning which, we shall come to declare after this subject is finished; for it springs out of Loves-Root in us. For this is the most clear and undeniable witness of Truth, when Light and Revelation, and Life of Enjoyment meet together, then Declaration carries Power and Authority with it. But to return to the present thing, what can be said sufficiently of it, that so, if possible, the reign of Love might come to spread it self as a Net, to gather in for the Priestly Kingdom?
Some other Motions may be further urged, as these; Would you be always in a serene, quiet and peaceable Frame and Constitution of Mind, so as no vicissitude working-Cross, or Turbulency towards you, from Gentiles, Barbarians or Israelites, all which may give nothing of disturbance, where Charity is predominant; and why so? This is very marvelous, never to be perplexed, and never to be put out of Harmony.
Objection. But how can this agree? When as our most perfect pattern was said to be troubled, and his Soul was sorrowful unto Death; as also, that Afflictions are not joyous for the present?
First, We will Answer this main Objection, as to Christ our Lord in his Agonies; You must know, that all this was on this side of his Resurrection, [observe that] and it was to shew, that he had the sensible Passions of our Humanity, and that he was on our behalf to feel a sinless Grief and Sorrow, and to be really touched with these kind of Infirmities; or else how could he make Provision through and by Loves Conquest? If he had not been in Temptation and in Encounter with all Despite and Defamations, but yet he maintained his own Peace, which was the Fruit of Love, through all, and was reconciled to all the cross Dispensations, that met him in the World. For it was this perfect Love that carried him through to bear and suffer all things, and was for our Example and Encouragement to express, during the time of his human Minority, those sensible Dolours and Passions; but he comes off a victorious Champion, and tells us, That he had overcome, and assureth us, That in him we shall have a most fixed and firm Peace, though in the World exercised with Tribulation. So from hence it is to be admitted and allowed, that in the time of our Minority, before Love is in its perfect degree risen, it cannot be otherwise expected, but we may be liable to Grief, Sorrow, Commotion, Fears, and Jealousies, and so up and down in an uncertain Motion, tossed to and fro in our Minds, and all this because Love is but little, weak, and low of Stature; it is not got up into the Throne of Dominion, so as to govern all by the Law of Love; yet such are not to be hopeless, or of doubtful Mind, as desponding ever to see the Resurrection of Love, so as to possess its peaceable Immunities.
Know, whoever you be, that are made willing to venture the loss of all for to arrive at this Pearl of Charity, that you shall most surely find it and great rejoycing there will be at the finding of this lost Groat. Indeed the House of the Soul must be first thoroughly searched, and the natural Self-love must be swept out. For what is that which we must lose, but even all Rubbish, Filth and Dross? that so our Hearts being emptied and cleansed from all these, the King of Love may enter in with his full Train, wherein we may know nothing but Concord, Tranquility and a springing Treasury of all Goodness? Wherefore let all holy and pure Minds be stirred up to wait for the dropping Dews, which fall from the one eternal Element, to bring this Plant of Loves Kingdom forward, even unto its full height of Perfection; and be tender of its first Buddings, for it hath many subtle Enemies, both at home and abroad. It is the Heir, and therefore is conspired against; for can but the envious Spirits find out where its Birth doth spring, they will attempt to kill it whilst it is but an Infant; [Margin Note: That is, Loves Infancy, before it grows strong.] for which cause it must be hid in the Clefts of the eternal Rock, there to be fed and nourished with its own Nature-Milk, and Honey of Love, till it become strong and able to encounter and overcome all its Opposites, that it may reign alone, as Monarch of the Soul. My Friends, who-ever you be that shall read this experimental Writing, know assuredly, that if you can but find this burning Star of Love risen; nay, if you can but feel the Glowings and Enkindlings of heat in the center of your Hearts, it is more to be valued than all other spiritual Gifts, Powers, and divine Ornaments, which pertain to the new Creation; then we may boldly despise and contemn all worldly Dominions, and all the Joys and Delights of sensual Love. For you must know, it is such a Sacred and Celestial Seed, coming immediately from the heart of the Deity, as cannot admit any thing of defilement or pollution to abide with it: It soon leaves the Soul, if any thing be taken in which cannot abide the burning touch of this Altar Coal.
But here it may be asked, What is this Love, which is so highly exalted above all Heavenly and Earthly things? Sure there must be some rare transcending Quality in it, not commonly known, that makes you press it so vehemently.
Truly, well I may, yet not I, but the essential Love it self doth move me to open the Mystery of it, which happily hath not been understood as now, by breaking up the Fountain of it, that so it may plentifully run forth; for giving the Light of the Knowledge of it, doth but make way for the very substantial Body it self to rise sensibly in its flaming Quality. Take this further account of it, that it is known for to be the most holy and pure Generation of the immaculate Virgin of God, for which is prepared a Virgin-Womb, that this Birth might be the choice and undefiled One of her that brings it forth. It will not be now at Christs second Birth, as it was at his first; then his Visage was marred more than any mans; he was a Man of Sorrows and acquainted with Grief, and there was no Form or Comeliness in him, which made him to be set at naught, and greatly despised, though without Sin or Guile; but being found a Sufferer under it, therefore could not be exalted till he had slain the Enmity, and wrought out Victory; and thus he hath his first Birth in us, which must precede his second. But there is a vast difference between Christs first and second Coming. Many Ages are passed, wherein the Saints have only known the Birth of Christ in them after this weak, suffering, dying and reproachful state. The Apostles, upon whom the holy Ghost was poured forth after a most signal manner, by which Christ gave witness in them of his Victory and Exaltation, enabling them to work miraculously; yet notwithstanding they were not got beyond the suffering Birth of Christ in themselves; for they only had the Revelation and Fore-sight of his appearing in Power and great Glory; but they departed this Life, and did not see the sign of the Son of Man to take up in them for a visible Reign and Kingdom, that might redeem out of all Tribulation, and so it hath continued until this day. But yet there is not to be found a Generation so prepared and made ready for the second Coming of Christ, as was in that day, which might make us doubt, whether the coming of Christ be so nigh, because this Birth of Love is so hardly found in any, risen up to an absolute Dominion, which is a sure Introduction to the Omnipotent Reign of Christ, in this visible Earth, in the inward Properties of the Love Flock.
But you will say, The Apostles, and those that were Converted by their Ministry, were all in the Dispensation of Love, and were in expectation of having the Kingdom restored to Israel in their day; and what was the reason then that Christs second Birth did not rise in them?
To which I Answer, That it was thought meet by the Father of Wisdom, that all of that Generation should drink of their Lords suffering and dying Cup, as he often hinted unto them, when Personally with them, though they had a general Spirit of Prophecy concerning his glorious Reign, in which he would appear in his Saints, And then again it may be demurd upon, Whether those Elders themselves had completed their own Regeneration and so were perfectly arrived to the Throne-Dominion of Love, as fixed Overcomers? St. Paul, Peter and John that were most eminent amongst them seemed to have somewhat more in their Eye, than to what they had attained, and so were still a pressing after it. But however, it may be concluded, that they had gotten the Start before any that are known this day, yet it seems that hitherto Loves Womb hath been shut up from bringing forth Children of the Resurrection, at least to any thing that is manifestly known. But for this we may have good hope, that if indeed it be Born in any one, and made strong to maintain its Right & Superiority over the whole inward Creation, ruling as God, by whom it is certainly avouched, that a Virgin Spirit shall be given to such for eternal Generation, who shall be able to raise and quicken the holy Grain of Love, that lieth as dead, that so Love may see her Off-spring to multiply exceedingly unto all perfect Purity. Such an holy Congregation and Society being once raised to reign upon Loves Throne together, they will be as so many raised Banners, which will be terrible to the Nations, which stand without the circle of Love. Now by all this we see what hath hitherto put a stop, and caused the Lord to delay his coming, and will still, till perfect Love be come to burn up every Image in the Mind, that is not engraved by Gods own Finger. It is certainly to be concluded, that Charity is the golden Wash & baptizing Pool, out of which Souls do come all Ruddy and White, Clear and Bright, to whom the Lord may say, My Dove, my fair One, my Undefiled, come away; the Love-Scarlet-Dye hath washed thy Blackness away, so that now thou art all fair in my eye. This is a Prophecy which hath now in some its fulfilling, and will have more abundantly, as this Spirit of burning Love takes possession of Hearts; and then the very Face of God will be the Covering, by which we shall see and know, what before we were ignorant of, as to our own pure Loves-Nativity, which was fore-known in Christ, before the World of Wrath and Bitterness did shew it self. And thus by the first and second Birth of Christ in us, all will come to be restored to a glorious new Creation, where Love shall dye no more, nor Sin live, which brought in Curse and Sorrow, and estranged God from us. Now is not all this a most persuasive Motive, to the Love-Flock, where-ever scattered, that God intends to bring them to this Love-band of Perfection, that so we may know one another as Gods enkindled Sparks, encreasing to Flames, which are to consume all envy & wrath as Stubble and Dross. The Trumpet sounds from Mount-Zion, and waxeth louder and louder, we daily hear it, from which we have declared the most excellent things concerning the eternal Love-fellowship in Gods own clearness, in which no spot of Darkness is to be found. You will say, Where are such to be found, according to this degree, which you have here described? All visible Churches and Societies are far too light, when weighed with this golden Grain, and Shekel of the eternal Sanctuary. We know it to be so from the all-piercing Eye, which doth try all degrees of Love, and it may be universally bewailed, that so much superficial, formal and dead Love is found both to God and one another. Hence we do not wonder that the Bridegroom makes no more haste, his Bride wanting as yet her full Vesture or Robe of pure Charity, without which she can never be said to be ready; for this is to be all her Glory both within and without, and to adorn her for love and delight. Therefore all Pre-eminence and Honour give to Love, taking all care to nourish it up in God, and there abound in it towards one another. This high, pure and mystical Unity of Love hath been yet very little understood, and less practiced; that Heaven-born-society is much scattered: Where is Loves paved habitation to be found, in which fervent Charity doth wholly act and move, loving and admiring, as God appears and looks through the Lattice of Humanity in each one? Oh! how should it draw out, and open the Springs of Love, as God himself, who is the Spirit and Life of Love, which moveth and riseth in holy Souls! And therefore it becomes us to be tender of it, not to grieve it or quench it in one another, for that may cause it to sink and dye away in our selves, and then the very Ark of our strength departs from us, and the heat and vigour of all spiritual Life declines with it. Upon which consideration, O ye Heaven-born, out of the Womb of eternal Love, where-ever dispersed, let your Gatherings be to this lifted-up Standard, where Loves Kingdom is known and possessed in all Peace, Joy and Tranquillity. The Trumpet from Mount-Zion doth sound, to call you away from all worldly, drossy, perishing Loves, which are not Supersensual and Celestial; nay, further from all luke-warm superficial Loves; for Loves workings must be fervent, strong and immutable, for the making meet for the rising and abiding Powers of the holy Ghost to work from. All which will be brought out of the fiery Furnace of Love, for the great and mighty things that give Testimony of Christs Kingdom in his Saints being come; for it will surely open from this Center. Now, who-ever ye are that feel the touch of this Celestial Fire-Stone, send forth your warming Sparks to set one another in an holy Flame; know your own Mothers Children; hide not yourselves from them; be no longer Strangers toward them; find them out from North to South; revive yet once again the Apostolical knot and band of unfeigned Love, that may fore-run the Bridegrooms return to dwell amongst us, that so we may no longer Fast and Mourn, but be ever feasted with Loves multiplyings from the Fountain-Deity: Even so confirm it, O Lord Jesus accordingly!
Oh God! Inspire with thy Love-Fires
That we may abide with Angelical Quiers.
The Lambs Trump doth sound to call us up,
To drink of this Love-flaming Cup:
The Spirit thereof doth so sweetly burn,
That Mortals into Seraphim it doth turn;
Is not this the transforming thing,
Which to a God-like Beeing will bring?
Oh Charity! What can be said of thee?
Dost thou not proceed from the Deity?
Henceforth I must proclaim Loves Fame
To all that bear that living Name.
Who would not in love be with Love also?
For its force is greater than any Foe;
How doth it expel all Fears, that they fly,
Because of sweet Peace and Serenity?
Love born of God, Heir to all Good,
Steward of his House, giving out Food:
Is not this the one only excellent thing,
Which will fetch out the Serpents Sting?
Nay, more than this I clearly see,
Love will enter the secret of the Deity,
Where ye will see Love a burning Lamp,
Upwards flying, never choked or dampt.
Wind we up our Angels to God above,
Where we may drink our fill of Love,
And feast on those fat and pleasant things,
That are within the Gardening Springs,
Where the everlasting Gates open stand,
For such as be united in Loves band:
Come, enter then as Chariots burning Flame,
Into that holy Place which known is by Name.
We feel Love like a bubbling Spring,
Which makes us the new Song ever sing.
All Praises we will give to Elohim,
Who rideth on the Seraphim:
Floods of Joy, with Celestial Praise,
Shall now out-flow to the Ancient of Days;
For while we feel and taste Loves Fire,
It doth extinguish all earthly Desire.
Let thy Love stream forth as a Shower,
Let it flow forth in Life and Power;
This is the thing that is most pure,
It can all of our Diseases fully cure.
Oh! let the Kingdom of this Love come,
That we may reign with God the Son
In everlasting Loves sweet Harmony,
Hereby conquering all of the Enmity.
Love is the Lambs pure Virgin-Bride,
She is all Fair and Comely does abide,
So sweet, so mild and ravishing in his Eye,
That in his Love-embraces she must lie,
There possessing such pure Celestial Joy,
As none can know, nor come to annoy.
A Bed of Rest here for her is found,
That make Loves Trumpet ever sound.
Having passed through Loves Region and Dominion, we are come to set forth (according to the Gift still bestowed upon us) the glorious state of the everlasting Priesthood of Christ, carried on in his most holy Temple, Body and heavenly Sanctuary, which is framed for it by the Love-Power and Wisdom of the Most-High, who will have a Kingdom of Priests elected, and set apart for this purpose, To draw near in full assurance of acceptance with him in all their holy Offerings, each one from their consecrated Tabernacle, to minister to the mighty Jehovah. For the which is required a special Ordination, which none can be capable of, but such as first are all purified in the burning Springs of Love, that so they may become Holy, Merciful and Compassionate, to intercede for the Ignorant, and such as are turned aside from the tract of the just and perfect One. Now then, to be called & anointed of God to this holy Function, is the greatest spiritual Dignity and Honour, that can be conferred upon the Love-Flock; it excels both the Prophetical and Kingly Dominion, all which intrinsically do agree together, only the Priestly Office doth outshine in Glory, being the last and finishing Ministration, which shall reconcile and gather into the Unity, with the most holy and ever blessed Trinity, where fixation within the Temple-Body of the holy Ghost shall ever more be enjoyed.
Now in order to the revealing and making out this high and peculiar Priest-hood, it is expedient I should declare, in what a living figure it appeared to me, or rather to somewhat which was raised up to be as a clear burning Lamp of Love, which was capable of this great and marvelous sight, which did open from the very God-head Beeing, in whose Body of Light and Glory this Priesthood in the Heavens was clearly manifested to my Eye sight, which is the ground work I shall go upon, according to the express which the great Melchizedeck Priest hath set open, and made teachable hereby for the benefit and service of that Holy and Royal Tribe that shall hereunto be numbered. For in the present Age, wherein the most precious have their Call to come out from what is vile, temporary and Soul-cankering against the Love, minding of Earthly things; and as to the more refined religions dress (where the Viper of sinful Hypocrisie which hath had a fair covering spread over it) in every changeable Ministration, which refers to an outside Holiness till from this there be a departing, and entering into Loves substantiality, there can be no bearing part in this peculiar and Royal Priesthood. But let us go on to describe it according to the Mount Zion Pattern, which we have seen, and the Words which were heard from thence.
The Vision of the Heavenly Tabernacle.
I was carried in Spirit, where I saw a light flaming glory unfolding and opening it self larger and more conspicuous, and in the midst of it an Abysical Deep, from whence there was a working flowing Source, in a restless Motion, flashing up transparent Matter, so sparklingly glorious for Colours, as if all manner of precious Stones had been co-mixed in the Matter; then did appear numerous Persons gathered to the Glory of this flowing Source, from the Virtue and Power that rose out of the Deep, which was as the Resurrection of pure heavenly Bodies, bright and clear, that stood there to receive and drink in from this Abysical Deep; then was it asked by that translated Spirit that saw all this, What was to be understood by all this? And it was answered, It is the flowing of the Deity, that is ever generating forth, for begetting and renewing what is like to its own Beeing, and the sparkling Matter that so continually flashed out, was to consecrate the heavenly Order of Kingly Priests, which would be the very Tabernacle-Glory upon them, for this Priestly Kingdom, under the highest degree of anointing are for to be: And who-ever can pure and abstractedly come up and lie near the flowing of this Abysical Deep, are under the Ordination for Kingly Priests, and so near to God, as nothing shall them be denyed for which they shall interceed; for great Power, they will have within their own command; for they are Spirited very high by daily drinking in this deified Matter.
In this Vision there was no formal Temple, Tabernacle or Alter to be seen, [Margin Note: For the Kingdom was here delivered up, and God became all in all.] but God in his Virtual Power, Light and Purity, filled the numerous company that made up the Priestly Body, which was termed the God-head Fraternity. No particular Christ here I did see, but as he was said to be the Head and the Power that made them shine as so many burning Lamps before the Throne of the Fathers all-piercing Eye of Glory. There were degrees amongst this Holy Priestly fellowship, some in a higher, others in a lower order; But the Testimony of Truth, Love and Purity did open through all, as one entire Ark of the Heavenly Body compacted together, sounding forth New and wonderful Laud and Praises, different from all others, who in the Heavenly places did worship the Lord God Almighty.
This was a lively express and manifestation of the Everlasting and Unchangeable Priesthood, which the Holy Ghost will build up, and appear all in it, and therefore is come before hand to open the Scene of it, and to give Rules to direct in the Way, which leads thereunto, according to this substantial ground which opens from the Central Eternity, from whence all perfect things must spring out again, in this faded and corrupted Region; For which a most Holy and Royal Priesthood is ordained, that is to be the Salt of the Earth, to send forth their seasoning for Life, where Putrefaction unto Death hath reigned. Now we shall proceed and give forth, what hath run in as a Fountain, sending forth its Springs. It is then assured to us by an irreversible Covenant, that a Kingly Priesthood shall in this latter day stand upon the Earth. An Election and Call from the Holy Ghost is going out for to effect the same, who only knows where the true born Nazarites are, and where the sanctified in the Water of Life do lie, who will be brought out as baptized Ones, into this Holy Priestly order, so that it may be evident to all to know who they are, and to acknowledge their Priestly Royalty, each one in their various order and degree for power and eminency; for which there are several Rules, Characters and holy Missions, that will make out where all these pure, clear, lively Stones are connexed together, for a ruling and governing Priesthood in this visible Earth: These are of the Election hereunto, that may yet be hid amongst the Stuff of Babylons confusion. A David may be keeping of Sheep, an Elisha Plowing with a yoke of Oxen, till a special ordination come forth for anointing to a more high, worthy and honourable Employ, in which the business will be only to have to do with God, and therefore is set apart and sanctified only for that use, ceasing from all thronging Cares and secular Services, and a withdrawing from all defiling things of this kind. Whoever feels the touch of the Life-coal, that sets the only matter of the Souls eternal Essence a burning, they will soon find what separation is made, and can henceforth no more favour the low, vulgar, gross and Earthly concerns; from all which this Priestly Function doth set free, as called and anointed by the most Holy, that is head of this separated Congregation; therefore it is but meet that the Body should answer hereunto, that as our great High-Priest is passed into the Heavens, being found perfect, separate from sin and Sinners, so likewise all appertaining to this heavenly order will be known in their pure consecration. For the Spring of the Spirit will rise from within, to cleanse every instrument that must be used about the Tabernacle service, because God will have nothing to come near Him, but what hath Holiness engraved upon it, which doth imply a coming out of what is common and defiling, that nothing of this corrupting Nature may be found amongst the Priestly Tribe. For these are designed and appointed to deal with God in all weighty Spiritual matters, belonging to the Restoration, and that may erect the New Jerusalem state in this very World. Therefore there is to be an extraordinary Call of the holy Ghost, for the impowering and fitting out hereunto; for else it will be impossible to carry this Evangelical Ministration in such an evil Region, where the Cry and Plea of mortal necessities are continually heard, as making it a lawful imposition upon the very illuminated Saints to puddle about Earthly things; by which indeed the way unto the most Holy hath been blocked up; no open Face of God could through this muddy glass be seen, as being the dark side of the Cloud which keeps from God by many removes and distances. Therefore a healing Balsam, for a continual bleeding wound, the great and merciful High Priest hath sent down, even the victorious reconciling Crown, of the Priestly anointing which is in very truth his Essential Deity, which riseth as a Fountain of Purity, overspreading the whole Humanity, and consecrates it for both Tabernacle, Ark and Altar, in which the Holy Ghost officiates, and accomplisheth the whole Divine service. Now whatever Soul and Spirit shall be thus taken up, and arrested upon Gods account, to serve and minister about the Heavenly and most excellent things, which belong to the Everlasting Priesthood, for it is not to be thought that the most holy will allow or permit such to prophane what he hath Sanctified, or the Living to be entombed with the Dead, or the high scented Oyl which springs from the Holy Ghost to let in the noisome putrefactions from the loathed Kedar, where all unclean Spirits do dwell. Here is an absolute command to have no touch, nor intermedling withal, so as to ensnare, or come into hazard of breaking the consecrated Vows; For it is a true saying of that great Saint, That we in this consideration do cease to be our own, we cannot according to the Law of the Spirit dispose of our selves, no, not for an hour or day, from our Lord and Masters Employ and Business, further than as good and faithful Stewards, we can give a satisfying account, according to those Spiritual Circumstances, we are bound in, unto him. The great and mighty King loveth to see all his Priestly train and attendants still about him, in such an Holy order, and Heavenly posture, as they may be ready to be sent forth upon the most eminent services, who can find employment enough for his Subjects and Ministering Spirits, & who takes it as a great dishonour, to have this holy order bring their high profession to be brought into contempt, by running into the cloud, and thicket of vain rudimental things. Nay, more than this, the restitution extends to the ordained and called ones, upon whom the anointing hath been poured forth, for the most Holy incense offering; they cannot be at liberty to fall in with those lawful and necessary concerns which pertain to the feeding and cloathing of the Body, but if here at any time engaged, the Spiritual part suffers hurt, because it acts out of its own Sphere, and divine property, which should stand in Faiths essentiality, where all our motions should be accompanied with the Principle of Faith, in the Priestly Ministration, for the supplying what is needful to the true Temple worshippers; whereunto keeping and walking with God, in a perfect way, fulfilling all his Sanctuary institutions, such are as Lilies to Spring and grow without toil or care. The blessings of the Deep shall ever more abound and flow in, while there is an abiding in the Faith hereof, giving God full credit, and running all fully upon his account, in this case. The Truth is, the Lord stands engaged to provide all sufficiency for his Servants, whom he hath called from all other low inferior Services and Employs, being himself in Covenant with the Priesthood of his own ordination. Holy Paul makes use of it from the unchangeable Law, that runs from Shadows and figurative Services, till it comes to the Life and Substance. Do you not know (saith he) that they which minister about Holy things, live of the things of the Temple, and they which wait at the Altar, are partakers with it; They have a right hereunto, according to a Law of divine Institution. But the Proprietors of these worldly Goods, do not hold themselves obliged hereunto; but do engross and take up all; and if they let go any thing, it is rather by constraint, than a free and voluntary Offering. But we are not to search too deep into this matter, for Faultiness may be found among our own Tribe, that lie within the circle of the Priestly Covenant, in whom much Remissness and Shortness hath been found, as to the ministering to the Necessities of the true dedicated Nazarites. But we hope to see another Power and Spirit, that shall bear rule, which shall make the fast clasped Proprietors to become all free and open-handed, according to the fore-going Prophecy, that the Churl shall be made liberal, yea, so as to reckon nothing to be his own.
But here it may well be asked, What is it that must come to loosen from this Self-bottom, so as to unhinge this strong Gate, that hath kept out from the Land of eternal Store and Blessing, whereof Abrahams Seed in the Faith are Heirs?
This doth in part answer the Question, which may produce the great change in narrow Spirits, which is the Gift of the Faith of the operation of God, which openeth from the Springs of Love, which are spread abroad by the holy Ghost, and kept as a live Coal that can multiply it self into a strong and vehement flame of Love, which is the cherishing Root that makes Faith to become all fruitful, beyond all exteriour sense and sight, resting and confiding in the creating Fiat, which can call those things that are not, to be, and make a something of nothing: This we may call the Riches of Faith, that can make an increase where no visible Matter appeareth. This is no common Faith, it is no where found, but where the holy Ghost hath planted himself for a Blessing and growing Revenue: Who ever shall receive of this Gift, and taste the Power of it, will soon cease to grasp and love earthly and perishing things; they will be constrained to offer and consecrate all that may be for the service and use of the holy royal Melchizedeck Priesthood. And though at this time little of this Spirit and Power doth appear in the World, yet know of a truth, from the Witness of Jesus, that the long circling Motion of the holy Anointing, (which hath hitherto but scattered his Sparks of Light) is now in very deed upon the out-breaking Day of Life, that what hath been only in sweet Love-Movings, and transient passing Powers, that have in the very Altar-waiters ceased. But we shall say now again, Behold, come and see, the burning ghostly Body is risen that will turn all uncertain Motion into a fixed act of all flowing generating Powers. But this the Lord hath shewed me, This will be first appropriated to the high Priestly Order, that can pass beyond the Vail, to whom the Holy of Holiest stands open: For there are different Degrees, States and Orders in this last and new erected Priesthood, in which the holy Ghost will appear to be all; which according to our received Instruction, I shall give a description of, and how it may be known, who are the called and chosen of God hereunto. For each one ordained hereunto will have the Foundation Seal, the Priestly Mark, which shall be the known Character, which no one shall obliterate or deny. And as to the outward Sex, there shall be no distinction, though the Typical Priesthood admitted none but Males in its day: All of that is done away, for Signs and Figures in this Ministration do fly away like a Cloud: Male and Female are alike here, therefore the holy Ghost doth include both in one, swallowing up all in the Newness, Strength, Power and Glory of his own springing new Birth, according as it is witnessed, Where there is neither Male nor Female, but Christ is all, and in all; who is the quickening Spirit, and the true Evidence, that will shew forth it self, according to their grown up measure and degrees. For Persons here signifie little, Wisdoms Purity and Power in the Spirit is all that God respecteth in his Priestly Offerings. We must know that these Priests are of three Ranks or Orders, constituted and ordained by the great high Priest, who yet continues in his mediating Kingdom, till the whole be brought up and finished for mutual Glorification with him.
The first and lower Rank is of those, who are not yet got beyond the Sons Ministration, who are yet conscious of Sins and Transgressions, committed under the first Covenant, according to the similitude of Adams Transgression, running from that putrefied Line, for whom a necessity there is to come under the divers Washings & Separations, Atonings, Blood-sprinklings, that so they may be qualified to come within Mount-Zions circle, where no Sin-offering is needed, but in order unto the rising up to the successive degrees of the Melchizedeck Order, the whole Burnt-offering is required; the Goat must dye, and the sinful infected Life must expire amidst the Altar-Flames: For a continual Offering of this kind must be, till the whole Body of Sin be consumed; for whilst any thing of that abides and works in its circling Motion, there are required new and fresh Atonings, Pacifications and Blood-sprinkling, till the one Offering comes it self to be offered up once for all, which acquits from all Sin, and makes meet & prepared Vessels, to come in to the first degree of Purity, whose Consciences being purged there from all consciousness of Sin, may come up with boldness and full assurance of Faith, in that anointing which is shed forth to cleanse from all Sin, reconciling and making all Scores and Reckonings even, as in reference to God the most holy and justifier of those who are made partakers of Christ in his Prophetical, Kingly and Priestly Office. For where-ever the Lord comes to offer himself up through the eternal Spirit, by his own Body that are fully perfected: For as under the Levitical Ordinances prescribed by God, it was appointed for the Priests only to bear the Ark; so under this Covenant-Ministration, none but the spiritually consecrated Priests, that are of this Order, can bear the living Testimony of Christs risen and spiritual Body, [ Margin Note: Which Body is the Ark of the living presence, so to be understood.] which goes forth with great power, where-ever it comes, to make Rocks break, and Islands flee away, and Waters to divide; all which makes way for the bringing up to the last step of the all Priestly Throne, to sit down with Christ in heavenly Places at the Right-hand of the Majesty on high, where we are to consider those, who of this holy, high and separated Order, are here become the Tabernacle, Ark and Altar, and the most inward holy place, where Christ the anointed hath so poured forth himself, that he is to be known in them as no other than God the holy Ghost, officiating and accomplishing the most holy Service, as in the Person of the great high Priest, who having perfected Holiness, comes in the open Face of the most inward separated place, where God is manifest, and no Spirit nor Soul can ever come to know, or meet God but here, according as we have it from the Mouth of the Lord himself, who told Moses, That here in this holy place he would commune with him, and appear in his Glory. But alas! Who is able to see at first glance into this high exalted degree, of an high Priestly Calling? It is so great and wonderful, that it makes the Light of all fore-going Ministrations to look dark and dim, as far excelling all, as the Substance doth the Shadow. But before we proceed to set forth this third and last degree, that brings so into God, let us consider further of the two lower Orders, which to this Priesthood do belong, what their Qualifications are, and from whence called out? The first Rank is of those afore-mentioned, who have been under the Altar-Purifyings, and divers Washings, and blood-Sprinklings, and perfuming Oyls, by which they are made perfect and clean and become such who have no more Conscience of Sin; for the Fountain-spring of the Life-Blood stands ever open, Christ in his bubbling Spirit, by which he maintains a sinless Purity, of which sort God chuseth and ordains his Tabernacle-Ministers, who are made meet to officiate about the holy things, offering up the holy Incense and Heave-offerings, keeping all the Laws and charge of the Sanctuary, presenting only what is consecrated unto the Lord, in order to the expelling of every defiled thing. Now great is the Dignity of this very lowest degree, forasmuch as they are made partakers of Christ, and in him are become Mediators, of the New Covenant, wherein great strength is found; inasmuch as Christ in Spirit is made the surety of this faultless Testament, which gives great boldness, to plead for Remission of Sins, in the behalf of others, who yet remain in the sinful imperfect state, who being ready and free to intercede, from the pure unfeigned Love on their behalf, may come up to be the highest also in this divine Function.
Now to mention the Service and Office of the second Order, who are such as take not this Honour unto themselves, but are chosen, anointed and separated, by the heavenly Ordination; these are those who are set apart for Gods Sanctuary to be pitched in the midst of them, out of which they are not to depart, because the Crown of the anointing Oyl hath been poured forth upon them, which is no less than the Sanctification in the holy Ghost. Here waiting in their perfect God-like Order, who can set no defiled thing before their Eye; as David speaketh, Thou hast set the Godly Man apart for thy self. God appropriates all that are of the Priestly Order to himself, he forbids them to be Servants to men; nothing of a divided Service is here to be pleaded for; no going back to bury their Dead, or to be defiled with them. It was the blessing which Moses pronounced upon the Tribe of Levi; Let thy Urim and thy Thummim be with thy holy One, who said of his Father and Mother, I have not seen them, neither did he acknowledge his own Brethren, nor know his own Children; signifying that there was a coming out from, and forgetting whatsoever was of a mortal Birth, and all external Bonds and Obligations. It is like Gods taking up of Enoch; a cessation from a worldly Beeing presently follows this separate Order. God will have none come near him, that shall look back to the Customs, Traffick and Immercements of this World, though lawful to others, yet not to these that are under this anointing; for God who is the most high Purity, soon smells an Esau-hunter, and a worldly Demas, with whom the holy Ghost can have no communion. Nor will he take any to officiate in the holy Priestly Ministration, till separated from these gross and servile things.
But here now follows an Objection: How such shall be provided for, that must discharge themselves from all secular Callings, having no Propriety in the common Mammon, stock and store, and yet have Bodies which stand in need of Temporal things? What way do you propose for their outward Subsistence?
As to this, we refer you to what the Almighty provider and overseer hath settled as a standing Rule, throughout the holy Priestly Generation, that God himself is to be their Portion and Inheritance; and therefore they were to have no Inheritance with their Brethren; the Sacrifices of the Lord God of Israel made by Fire, are given them for their portion. How is that to be understood? Thus, they which wait at the Altar, are to receive of the Gifts of the Altar, which none other hath right to partake of. There is a further meaning in this, than what we have License yet to declare, only thus much we may glance out in this gloomy Day, that there is a Vein which runs under Ground, within the holy place, that to the Priests Revenue doth belong; the Vultures Eye hath it not descryed; neither can any Artificer among the Sons of men this golden Mine find, the everlasting precious Rock a covering is upon it, and still will be, till the third Rank of this high Priestly Order into manifestation shall be brought, in the Conquest and sealing Power of the holy Ghost, and then you will see what force Aaron the high-Priests Rod hath to rule and pierce this long hidden Vein, from whence will flow forth an inexhausted Treasury. Gold and Silver in this time will be of little regard, the Ingrossers of which tormented will be, when they shall see their Coyn out of date. For the great Melchizedeck will the absolute Monarch be, and a new Coyn shall stamp, which shall currently pass through all the Earth. But be this Secret what in Wisdoms Glass we have seen, it is not yet our time any thing further to disclose; but let us go on to the highest degree in this Tabernacle, in the holiest of Beeings to pitch, improving all present advantages herefore in a pure Nazarite dedication. This only observe, If we feel in our selves such an impulsive Power from the holy Spirit, strongly carrying out hereunto, this will be a sign of the divine Ordination, and Call hereunto. We need nothing of mans Approbation or Installation to this holy Mechizideck-Order, in which Christ is to be known the same yesterday, to day, and forever, carrying on this everlasting Priesthood, from his own eternal Loins, in the spiritual Generation, of which no account can be given, being chosen of him hereunto before the Foundation of the World, which is not to vanish away, but that way may be made for the new Creation, which shall consist of these three degrees of Kingly Priests. However, let all be cautioned not to presume to thrust themselves into this sacred Function, before the Melchizideck-King in his true eternal spiritual Birth, do spring in the Soul, where true Regeneration, and pure and high Illuminations have passed before, in way of preparation for this Priestly-Stars rising: Therefore what manner of Abnegation and holy Separation is hereunto required? This one Service and Work is to be followed and minded. Whoever are entered into this most high and holy Profession, must cease from all other rudimental earthly Services. The Temple-Service is to be managed by clean and sanctified Vessels, set apart for that use. Now here it will be convenient to shew the Necessity of having all things ministered to such in their Attendance, by those who endowed are with these worldly Goods. There is an Obligation which lies in special manner upon all true Israelites, to bring their Gifts to those who are called out from amongst them, to serve at the Altar, for whom Provision should be made for their necessary supply, that they may have nothing of Care or Incumbrance upon them in their first entering hereupon; all which is a most acceptable Offering, if any shall freely communicate upon this consideration, which may not of this kind be always required; for as this royal Priesthood gets up to their all-powerful Degrees, and princely Dignities, they will have no need of any creaturely Contributions; for to them the Door of all heavenly Store shall stand open, from whence they shall not only have to answer their own Requirings, but also those of the whole oppressed and groaning Creation. Wherefore, what more acceptable for the present Distress can there be, than to promote and help forward this Priestly Dedication, which may bring so great a Blessing upon the Earth?
But it may be objected, How shall we know infallibly, such who under this Nazarite Vow and holy Anointing are, that we may minister to them of our Substance? there being at this day so many rising Stars, which the Serpents Tail hath plucked down to the Earth?
Know that it is a principal Gift to have an impartial Spirit of discerning in this matter, before the holy Ghost comes to give the undeniable Witness; but now to know them whilst they are in their Minority, and suffering state, going on in the process of Christ, who himself was questioned and doubted of sometimes, by them who were daily conversant with him; the same Spirit of Incredulity and suspicious Fear may have a great Predominancy now among Christs Disciples, as not discerning the Lord returned in Spirit, though yet in weakness of Flesh, for the abolishing of the Sin and Curse out of it; which while this is but a doing, in order to the holy Priesthood entering upon, all aid, support and encouragement ought to be ministered by those who are in more enlargement, as to these outward things, and to lay aside all Jealousie, Fear and Suspicion; for it is much better to be found in the excelling Spirit of Charity, which hopeth and believeth the best of things, and thinketh no Evil, and yet doth not take away right and sound Judgment, but that they may discern, who the Lords true anointed Ones are. There are several characters by which they may be known, before they reach to the high priestly mark: We will mention one or two, as the fore-running ground work. In the first place, they are crucified to all mortal and temporal things, that would invite and steal away the Mind, and weaken the strength of Love to God, that are perfectly unhinged and loosened from all of this kind, which is so great a Sorcery and Witchcraft, by which Millions of Souls have been bound down, so that they could never expect this Resurrection state for to reach it. A second Character is this, That as they are become dead to all the evil appearance of things, so in some respect to the show and seeming Godliness, and formal state of the first Temple-building, with all its Ceremonial Ministrations, which can never make the Comers thereunto perfect. Till these be removed, there is no place for the Temple Body and Tabernacle of God to come down, from whence the everlasting burning Incense, and Praise-Offerings are to ascend. Now from these two Branches numerous Fruits of the Spirit will spring, by which you may know the high Priestly Off-spring, who must needs appear as bright and terrible as an Army with Banners, eschewing and denying all of the changeable state of things, whether considered in the heavenly Constellation, or in the earthly Retinue, nor staying in any state or Ministration, till got up to dwell in the munition of Rocks, where neither Water nor Bread shall ever fail. This and much more might be enlarged upon, as the first Buddings out of the Priestly Lilies, which are to grow without care and toil, and therefore all-worthy to be cared for; and if there shall be a carelessness or neglect of this Duty, as to the present Season, wherein outward things may be for the promoting of this high Priestly fraternity, if no open heart here for shall be found, God would not fail to bring in by some other way, and shut out the earthly Proprietors, that may overslip their Day, in that they have omitted to consecrate their principal Substances, to the use and service of this holy Stock, through which their blessing would have been. For the Lord, who is King of the whole Creation, observes well who bring their free-will Offerings of this kind. Let not this seem as a bare tinkling Sound, for the weight of a God is in it, who will certainly sow in through this rising Priesthood, with such fruitful Powers and Gifts, as they may be able to bless many with the Blessings from the holy Ghost, and know the Temple-Body is here, for a raising the golden Nail, is fixing, wherein the Soveraignity of a Kingly Priesthood in this approaching time and age, is coming to be established. The Lion out of Zion is roaring, to gather in his Priestly Prey, blessed are they who are come to know the Thunder of his Power, and do it obey, taking hold of that Horn that is filled with the Priestly Oyl, which may give true separating Mark to the elect Sheep, the time being far spent in the hopeful expectation, for all these great things to be fulfilled. No other thing will now suffice, after all this Light and Revelation, but to be found the living Epistles, which is the sure engraving of the holy Ghost, as it was said, that the writing of the Law was by the finger of God; even so, yet once more again, God will copy out himself, not in a dead Draught, but in a lively acting Power. For this end, a strong gust of Wind from the third Heavens doth blow, to open this fair Rose and Lily, which is yet in its bud; and although long it hath been hid, and kept under by the Thicket of wild Plants, yet now the Love devouring flame is come forth to kindle upon them, that this holy thing may come to stand single and alone, from every twisting Bryar and Thorne, that hath shaded & overtopped this sprout of Life, which is to run up unto the high Throne of the everlasting Priestly Dominion, where all Boldness and Freedom is to enter the most holy place; and what is that but the most secret Tabernacle of the most High, wherein all pleasant Joy and Rest in Love-Communion is known? Can we but come to put on this Priestly Robe, Admittance then we may have to speak with God at any time. But who is it that can be priviledgd for such an immediate Access, but such as wear the pure Ephod, and the most holy Breastplate, where is that Urim and Thummim, the shut-up Oracle, all open to such doth stand, through which Gods Mind is well understood. Of such Qualifications as these, is that third and top stature of the Melchizedeck-Priesthood, in which the Ark of the Testimony doth open, that all difficult Points will decide, either in reference to God or Man. This is that last and wonderful Ministration, beyond which nothing is to be looked for; for it brings fallen Man back again, to what he was designed, before this visible Creation was brought forth. May it not be permitted us to say, and that not without good Authority, That fallen Man is to be restored to a degree above the Angels? For unto which of the Angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And, Let all the Angels of God worship him. What is here appropriated to Christ, the same appertains to all that are of his Life-Line begotten, from the same incorruptible Word, to the same joynt Pre-eminence, at which the fallen Angels, to this day, great Indignation have, and therefore they are so busie and active in this present proving Time, watching to beguile, tempt and supplant all of this Priestly Crown, as those do well know, who to any good degree of this new springing Birth are come; they have a Thousand Wiles and subtil Baits to tempt withal, from this present World, by which they have great advantage to bind still under their Power, striving to keep the Creature still in Enmity with themselves, to God their Creator, introducing still of their poysonous Sting, which is become the bitter Root of Sin, which the holy Ghost can only pluck away, and heal again the infected part; for what but a Spirit can enter into that deadly thing for Cure and Restoration? against which all the fallen Angels do greatly war and struggle? for they would still keep in their Scorpion Sting. But the Love-Compassion of the everlasting Father hath made such Provision, as to have it drawn out, where Foundation building is laid for an holy royal Priesthood. The Soveraign Ointment is all compounded and made ready for the perfecting this Cure, at which all evil Angels, whether visible or invisible, who in the earthly sinful Principle do remain, may envy and be in pain, but no power have to hurt, or thrust in their Leviathan Hook, to wound again; such a defensive Virtue there is found in this boyling Oyntment, which works it self to such an height of Spirit, as no malignity of sin is able to abide with it: So penetrating it is, that it throws out every black Moat, that from this low blustering Region is blown in upon it. And thus the holy Ghost is become the true working bubbling Spring, that maintains a divine clearness with wonder, in which God, the holy Ghost, will make himself manifest in a more full and perfect manner, than what ever in former Ages hath been witnessed. Where-ever this powerful and piercing anointing shall first work through, it will do no less than produce those creating Powers, that shall another World renew. God yet once more is to move himself in this Mystery, from which such a Conflagration is expected, that nothing more of the old Earth or Heavens shall remain. For there is a Day that must burn as an Oven; blessed are those in whom it shall have its enkindling, wherein all dead fruitless Works shall be burnt up, which makes room for the seven governing Powers, of the holy Ghost to go forth, whether in the Arch-Angel Trumpet-Sounds or Lightning-Voices, Earthquakes, Bindings, Loosings, Shuttings, Openings, working on this and on that hand, as unperceiveable, yet all things effecting through the impregnable motion of this invisible Operator. Of this sort will be the New heavenly Hosts, that created are again by the holy Ghost, all lively sparkling Stones, that are in their invisible Nature, as fiery Flames that can go hither and thither, to act according to the will of the great Elohim. This is now the thing that we are day by day looking out, for its all-powerful springing; all other flourishings in the very Courts of Holiness, in the use and exercise of divine Ordinances and solemn Convocations, they are not to be staid in, though they seem to be as the goodly Tents of Jacob. God, the holy Ghost comes to move higher, from his own essential creating Word, by which he makes New Heavens, that shall forever remain, and no more subject be to vanishing. It will be the last and greatest proving to the Saints themselves, to have their Heavens not only shaking, but melted all away, which may be compared to an out spreading Garden of various Flowers, which look pleasant and delightful, but they are what must fade and dye; these Garnishings are not to be trusted to, for as Grass they will wither: Something else that is stable and durable I am taught and made to look for, which is nothing less than the Creating Word of the Holy Ghost, that may be as a New Coynd Mint, that will an everlasting Treasure renew, which the Sun and Moon of these visible Heavens must bow unto. All the Glory of Flesh rejected is, when pure Breath and Spirit, in a Body of Air, shall, as out of the Valley of dry Bones, appear, and move, as a Celestial Wheel, both upward and downward, carrying and bearing up as an anointed Cherub, that may mount and ascend, and face the supreme Glory of the Lord Almighty. This is the high Adoption: that the Spirit in the living Creatures does move from the earthly Center up straight forward, being circled about with the unfadeable Body of the immutable Heavens, to whom the Heaven of Heavens will open, and descend to take in such Royal clothed Priests, that have put off their changeable Heavens, and are all clothed with substantial Power. If any one ask, How this shall be and when? We can only direct you to wait at the High-Priests Gate, by whom our inlet is, into all of these high inconceivable working Powers in the holy Ghost, which will the separating Description make, and show, by real Evidence, who it is, that from men and the Earth are in truth all fully redeemed.
Before we can give over this subject, we are to make known, for the Priestly Election sake, that they may be strengthened, supported and encouraged in their process, from the knowledge of these special Royalties, which to them do belong, it having been specified what are the high Qualifications of this high Priesthood, who must no more look down towards the creeping things of this Earth; for here you must consider the Enochian translation, these Priests being designed for the company of God, the most holy separated Beeing, for there is a real taking into God to be experienced, and a ceasing from the Life of Sin. Now for the bringing up hereunto, there must be a passing through, until the Holiest of all be entered into.
But now come we to describe what this holy Function stands chargeable withal, as also the Dignity, Power and Pre-eminence which doth attend it. Every High-Priest, taken from men, is ordained in things pertaining to God, that he may offer Gifts and Sacrifices for Sin. This is a Charge, which to this New Covenant Priesthood doth still belong; for who is so meet to deal with God, and to make intercession, as the Pure and Merciful, who have themselves been encompassed with Infirmity, and passed through divers Temptations, who but these can know how to have Compassion of the Ignorant and Knowing also, that have turned aside from the Sanctuary of Gods Presence and Walks, and thereby have lost their peace and joy? Therefore God hath as well provided in this case, Priests and Mediators on the Earth, as he hath provided that great High-Priest, who is entered into the Heavens; for the self-same Prevalency and Power will be found in and amongst this holy and undefiled Priesthood, because where-ever Christ in his spiritual Body is present, with the breathing Power of the holy Ghost, it implies great Efficacy in every Oblation and Prayer, which in their behalf shall be put up. Thus a Spirit of atoning is appropriated unto the Melchizedeck-Priesthood, from whom more fruitful Powers must branch forth, for further service in their Place and Office. There is also an Absolving Commission given, That whosoevers Sins they remit, they are from all Guilt discharged, as pronouncing it in the Person and Power of him to whom the holy Ghost was given without Measure, and who after his Resurrection breathed forth this Power upon his Disciples, That whatever they bound on Earth should be bound in Heaven. [Margin Note: Mat.18. v. 18. Joh. 20. v. 23] Hereby communicating his Priestly Power and Authority, that as he, the Son of Man, had power to forgive sins, so might they also have on Earth after his Departure, to carry on their Apostolical Dispensation, which only lasted for a while, and being lost, a feigned Form was set up in stead of it, without any sealing Effects of Spirit or Power. Thus the Shadow hath held up, without any living presence, in Babel, which boasts a Key, which never could open, nor give Enlargement to those who were bound in the Cords of Iniquity: for how should they, who are not purified themselves, help or succor their Brethren? And though this true thing hath been abused by the Arrogant and Self-exalting Spirit, that with this Priestly Robe covers all manner of Filth and Uncleanness, all of which will come to bear its shame, and have its Overthrow, as this True and Royal Priesthood shall rise in Power in the true Tabernacle, where the holy Ghost will present the Priestly Offerings; and this is that, which upon sure grounds, we know is now reviving again; the most Holy will bring forth his Priestly Unction, which will take the Chair, that so this holy Ordination may take place in great Soveraignity. The holy and just One hath reserved his last and most wonderful sealing Testimony, for to go forth from the Unity of an holy Priestly Spirit, which is so far perfected, as to stand no more in need of Offerings for Sin, because he who santifieth, and they who are sanctified, are made all one in this Ministration; for if they come not to a sinless state, they cannot be of this high Priestly Order, because to it a Key is given, which must open all the twelve Gates before-mentioned. [Margin note: That is, by incorporation with Christ, their sinless Life, all purely acting in them.] And without all Controversie, great is the Power that shall be here concentred; for our exalted Christ, who is passed higher than the Heavens, hath recovered Power to transfer himself in his divine Purity and excellent Might, unto this elected Priesthood, which shall be visible here on Earth. This is the true Mount Zion, from whence Decrees, Laws, Judgments and holy Statutes shall go forth from the Urim and Thummim, sound Knowledge and Understanding, and the Certainty of the words of Truth hence shall proceed, so that it will be a most sure and safe Oracle in all difficult Soul-cases, and to determine all Doubts and Difficulties; for of Old the Israel of God, would not venture upon any Concern, nor attempt any Design, without having first enquired at the Priests Mouth, who only was to give forth the Mind of God, which will now be again renewed, for those who are not admitted to this high Calling of the holy Priesthood, for such honour these Saints shall have above the lower Ranks, as being not ordained by man, nor after the Law of a carnal Commandment, but by the impressed Seal of the mighty God. Here need no Epistles of Commendation, the Powers of this Priestly Dignity will be sufficient Orators to recommend them; for great Signs and Wonders will be acted forth when the Temple-Body of the holy Ghost shall come down and open it self in the Priestly Ministration, every Branch of which will have its multiplying Fruits for the Praise-Offering of the Sanctuary. I shall now declare what the Testimony of Truth hath spoken in me, which is this, That whatever God is or can do, the same will appear in and amongst this Priestly Order; Visions, Proverbs, and Similitudes must cease, which as leading stars have been under the sons Ministration, this being the fullness of time, in which the Father will shew himself plainly, without any Figures or Shadows, in the substantial Body of Power, uncessantly flowing, from which the New Creation must bud out in a fresh Glory, and all of the old fade and dye away.
But here it may be objected, Where are there any to be found of this Royal Priesthood, who may give forth a Sealing Evidence in this present time? They have indeed been long predicted of, but we would fain see some really instated in this high Order.
For Answer to this, I say, there may possibly be some who are advanced to a good degree of this high state, and who have passed through the first and second Order; all which is an inward secret, purifying work from Sin, and holy Ground made ready for the Righteous Branch, in its Lily-beauty to spring, which may be done without any great noise; for where Christ is come to offer himself once for all, then the next thing that follows is the coming of the holy Ghost to reign all in all: wherefore we will believe and hope, there may be some under this peculiar Ordination though dispersed and unknown, who are all ready to enter upon the third Degree, which is the spiritual Rule and Authority; for it is no less than a perfect Regeneration that bringeth to this Gate, because whoever enters here, must first have shaken hands with a worldly Conversation, no more touching any dead thing; wherefore this state is not common or easily attained, but by such who are touched by Love, and anointed for this holy Melchizedeck Order, of their calling to which, none shall ever have cause to Repent; for great are the Royalties that will follow, according as hath been declared.
The Spirit of Prophecy spake thus to me expressly, as the close of this subject, saying, I will chuse a Disciplehood yet upon the Earth again, who shall know me in my inward Spiritual figure; as in former time I was known in a visible Humanity, by Voice and Shape, but now I am come to appear and walk upon invisible Earth, which none but the spiritual Man understands my Speech, or sees my transformed Shape; to such who my chosen Disciples are, I will familiarly appear; for behold, I upon a new Election am, who the Alpha and Omega is to call together such whose Names are found in the Crown Number Roll, one by one, till to the hundred and forty four Thousand for the increase & manifestation of this most holy Priesthood; blessed are they that shall be the first Foundation Pillars thereof, so saith the Yea & Amen; for this will be the Virgin church, upon whom no Spot or Wrinkle shall be found, for if found faulty, I cannot be their Priestly head, for the case is clean alterd of what it was in the day of my visible Corporiety, which was the first dawning of my Day, in which the mixed and imperfect things among my Disciplehood, could not so suddenly fly away; therefore a suffering state was to succeed after me, that so sin, by its daily dyings might expire, which among my old Disciplehood, in that Age, great effect did take, but yet deceasing before reaching to the full and perfect date of what was to be the Churches primitive state, now something greater and more perfect is to be revealed, after so long and cloudy a night of Apostasy, where there has been a going back, instead of going forward; but there is a Star that shall arise out of the same light Orb, whereof it shall be said, Behold, Wisdoms Day through dark Clouds doth appear, out of whose Virgin Womb bright Stars of Glory generated are, innumerably, to make up that Temple-Church, all fair and christaline, terrible as an Army with Banners, that shall display my Strength and Power. This is the Trumpet sound of Christ, the Lords Spirit, to such who of this high and holy Order are, that they may break away from their Iron Yokes, and be unbound from all Terrestrial things, for to come to be received into this new Disciplehood, and with the Lord to have all freedom of Speech. Oh! where shall we find any that shall, for this high and spiritual degree, all they have and are here for to resign, that as fixed Pillars for this first born Church, they may come so to be. Lord Jesus, it is thy golden Crook that must take hold, I see, for such a Priestly Ministry.
I shall, before I conclude, answer some Queries, that may arise in the Minds of some, as they read these Prophetical Revelations, who may require some further satisfaction concerning the truth of these things.
The first Objection that meets me, asking, How and after what manner are these great and deep Mysteries revealed and made known for we are in doubt whether any since the Apostles days can have so pure and clear a Discovery of the Mind of God, by way of Vision or Revelation.
As to this, I answer; The thing is weighty, and may be allowed of to search and follow this Query close and home, for too many there be that are Pretenders to the Gift of Prophecy and Revelation, whereby they put a cheat upon themselves and others, and bring themselves under that Wo of taking up the Lords Spirit for their covering, which is the greatest of all Evils, to be under a spiritual Fraud: Therefore I say, let every one search, try and examine, from what ground and spirit they come forth as the Oracles of God, to give his Mind out; for assuredly they will be called to a severe Account by the Spirit of Truth. Now as to this I will assure thee, (O Querior) whoever thou art, it was my great fear and jealousie, even upon my first entrance into this Ministration, and was made well aware of the wiles and subtilties of Satan, that was ready enough to mingle his Deceits with Truth; but divine Wisdom was my Counselor and Cautioner, and her Spirit became the Conduct to Truth, and Separator, she still throwing out what would not bear the touch of the burning Stone, which Wisdom had placed in the Center of my Heart, by which a wonderful Light of Manifestation did spring, for the knowledge of the Truth, in the deep Essentiality of it; the Way, Method, Measure and Rules of it, as experienced by me, I shall demonstrate, for the service and benefit of such as are true Seekers and fervent Lovers of Truth, how they may come to know the true Revelation of the Spirit of Christ, from those mixed Spirits that are apt to inject their Motions, and so muddy the pure Springs of Revelation; for know, it is a nice and difficult matter to know the Spirits speech and voice in this day since Christ the Lords ascending, than what it was before, when as the Word of the Lord came expressly to the Patriarchs and Prophets, articularly, by immediate Voice; God was very familiar in way of Speech, as with Abraham, Moses, and so to the Prophets, till Christs time; but now in these last days he speaks to us by the Spirit of his Son, which is the Spirit of Truth and Comforter, that is the Spirit we are to try and to be proved by, whether or no he is come into us, as a Spirit of Prophecy and Revelation, which you shall know first by way of Preparation of the inward Mind; for the speaking Word or Oracle of God must have a most holy separated place, distinct and apart from the outward Man; for there is to be prepared an inward Temple-body else no expectation of the holy Ghost, without a suitable Body be prepared for him, as the living Ark, in which the Oracle of Truth may open, and shew the Records of the Heavens.
But it may be further queried, How can this Temple-Body be raised up and kept so spiritually, as to be distinct and separated from the mortal body, with its senses and earthly Motions?
I Answer; Herein indeed lieth the great Mystery of all Mysteries, how to keep the spirit of the outward birth, with all his infecting Multiplicities, from rushing into the inward Court, where the Soul and God are to be in private Counsel together; for if there be a breaking in of the troubled Sea of thoughts, this is that which adulterates the pure revealed things, and brings a false covering upon them; therefore I shall give these following Rules, as they were given me by the holy Anointing, when I first sought this Priviledge, of divine Inspiration, I was counseled, as to the outward state of things, To avoid, as much as I could, the choaking intangling Cares of this Life, and also to sequester my self from all worldly Conversation, and give up Spirit, Soul and Body in pure dedication; the which I can say, in my measure I have been obedient to, and have found good things as to the spiritual part, have accrued thereby, which I shall never have cause to repent of, let my losses be what they can be, as to the worldly lot of things. Now the next Rule, which is more interior and Evangelical, as to the inward and holy place of the Mind, For this take more special care, and keep the outward Birth at distance from the superior and inward birth; call in your heavenly guard upon it; enter into no Parley with the outward Man of Reason, concerning spiritual matters, for you will find him a false Prophet, and no way consonant to this Ministration the Soul is waiting upon, therefore to watch and be in a defensive Posture against all invasions of this kind. Then again take a further Caution concerning a finer, more subtil sort of imaginariness, which comes in the appearance of spirituality; here lieth the greatest danger for mistake, when seeming good Motions do rise and spring, and yet but from the Astral Kingdom, but they are sometimes so divine as you can hardly discern them from the true teaching of the holy anointing; there are Spirits that will put on such a Priestly dress, like those that rose up against Moses, the Lords infallible Prophet, saying, Are not we spiritual, and therefore may be admitted into the secrets of God with you, and there give our Verdict as from the Oracle of God? Thus we are in danger to be encompassed with Spirits so finely clothed, as they would think much to be refused, but where the Urim and Thummim of sound judgment in such is come, that can only discern and taste Spirits of all sorts of Qualities, Natures and Degrees; for I well know, a Mind may be replenished with knowledge and understanding of divine Mysteries from the outward Tongues receivd and taken in, and yet have been kept strangers to the flowing Springs of Wisdom and Revelation within, from whence the certainty of the true Prophets is to be known; therefore let every one look to it, what they speak, teach or write; for it will pass through the inward ground for trial, where the fiery Region will prove it.
But now I shall come to describe the true and more certain way of divine Openings and Revelations; know then, where holy Consecrations and special Separations, as the foregoing Preparation to this high Ministration, where those are, as such may come to feel in themselves one essential Birth of Life to spring, which is not to be catched in by verbal Comprehension, Knowledge or Understanding; No such thing. But the Spirit of Truth and Revelation openeth himself in the fiery Essence of the Soul, in a sweet silent stillness, where out all thoughts are excluded; then doth the light Ray of the Deity rise, and overshadow and fill the Temple of the Mind with light and glory, then will the soul sink away deeper & deeper into the abyss, being where the greatest of Wisdoms secrets are to be known. When the spirit of the Soul can, after this manner steal & slide away from time and mortal day, then open stands that gate that giveth entrance to behold the glorifid beings & to hear the languages of that light world, which none else can hear but them that are got out of the noise of all other hearings, into that still and silent deep, where most pleasant, joyful Voices and Sounds are heard, which entering through the several Organs, as a fiery Breath, and nothing of vocal Words is either required or needed there: [Margin Note - a verse: How blind to time must that eye be, Who would see the glories of eternity? Sure those who Heaven most desire, They from all of the Earth do most retire.] Now then by this you may judge, that pure and unadulterated revelation and vision of a true sight, is not so quickly rushed into, nor easily attained; it is a great and peculiar Gift, and also requires great watchfulness, and attenders upon it, if any, would enjoy and hold it incorruptedly: And that there may be no deceit in this matter, when you come to try your own and other Spirits, take this observation further with you, If any one brings out a Prophecy or Revelation, take notice what defensive power and guard it hath upon it. The beloved John, when he had all those visions and revelations, he gives an account how they were seen and heard by him; for saith he, I was in the Spirit on the Lords day (and good proof there was of it), as much as if he had said, That it was neither Mans nor Mortals day that did rise and inclose upon him, but the one everlasting Day, or Ancient of Days, in whose Light he had the glorious Prospects of heavenly things themselves. Thus he was in the Spirit, which was his defensive power and guard, to keep out all other trifling Spirits. Observe this further, it is a much different thing for the Mind and Spirit of the Soul to be caught and taken up into the spirit pure and abstractedly; for then it is secured from mixtures; but when the holy Spirit is come only into the Property of our Souls, giving forth lustrous Light and Revelation, & in speaking fluently, yet hazardable to be twisted about from the self-promoting Essence, that ready and apt is to dash in upon the divine inspiring, as soon as it arise from its own center deep. This I speak knowingly, having traced through the deep Meanders, before I arrived to know the true and certain way of Revelation, by which now I am put out of doubt concerning the true Oracle speaking in the Soul, as to my own particular, watching thereunto with heedfulness, for the keeping out all fluttering Spirits that have their birth and nourishment from the astral and elementary Region, that can go in and out for proving, till we are got beyond their Kingdom. Now indeed when the spirit of the Soul meets with such a pull up into the Spirit, as the beloved Disciple, then it is out of all fears; but this is very rare, they are high favourites that do frequently meet with such transportations; but the other is more common and frequent to Saints, that lovers and enjoyers are of that Ministration, for whose sakes I have been impulsed to open these secret things, that they may put on their impregnable strength of defense, for the preserving this great immunity, as the choicest of all of Gods favours, and that incorruptedly, as from the pure spring of the Spirit, then you will find every faculty tinged with the fiery Glance of the holy Ghost, as you see by the dark & hard body of Iron, being inclosed with Fire, it is so penetrated therewith, as it becomes as one and the same fire flame; but you must keep and feed it there as the Salamander, which liveth always in the Fire; after this manner doth the holy Ghost, with his invisible flaming Body, penetrate through the spirit of the soul, that it is encompassed with Light, as the Angel, which is said (Rev. 9.17) standing in the Sun, all appearing as the very Sun of glory; therefore highly valuable it is, for any Saint to get such a clothing of the Spirit upon them; for nothing of Adams weak or impotent Nakedness can here be seen, but all glory, strength and power will be your habitation; therefore these are gifts to be much set by and desired, and not slighted or despised. Now having given a plain and experimental account of this nice and difficult Point, which I hope may have reached to the satisfaction of the doubtful, I shall now, by virtue of a heavenly Commission given me from the Lord, give counsel and caution to three sorts and degrees of Persons.
The First of this is to them that do question, Whether there be any Spirit of Prophecy or Revelation given forth since the Apostles deceased, as believing all dyed with them? This would be a sad and deplorable thing, if God should since that Age cut off the spring of Revelation from its original, that so the Sheep and Lambs of Christs flock should no more expect to be fed from the fresh springing Pastures, where no footing hath been, as also to drink of those flowing Rivers of Life that renew daily from the fount of the Godhead; let such but call to mind and consider those many Scripture-Prophecies and Promises concerning the continuation of this Gift unto the very end of time, both in the old and new Testament; I shall mention only some of the latter; John 14. 16,17,18. 2Cor.4.8. 1Cor.2.10, 11,12,13,14. 1John 2.28. Heb.8.9,10,11. Many more than these Scriptures could call up for confirmation of the continued run of the Spirit throughout all Ages, Christ by his Spirit comforting us, saying, Lo, he would be with his to the end of the World. Now, as from the Lord, I beseech you, not to eclipse the light of the Day-star (2Pet.1.19.) in your own Souls, nor quench the Spirit, nor despise Prophecying, then may the witness of Jesus rise in you, to confirm this most glorious Ministration, as a burning Lamp of Revelation.
A word of Love-caution is to another sort of Persons, who are entered into this Ministration, in its first degree, and are under the Spirits discipline and teaching; the word of Counsel, from the Father of Spirits, is this, That they keep precisely to the Rules and Laws of the Spirit; for there will be expected from such more shining and singular Conversation, shewed forth in a self-denying Life, dying to all of those mortal things and sensual enjoyments, that strangle and choke the fiery Breath of the holy Spirit, to stop it from kindling further and deeper in the Soulish Essence, that so there may be a coming up to a mighty Increase and Fruitfulness in the love and unity of the Spirit, having all tenderness to support, love and cherish each Olive Plant that springeth out of this Eden Garden, which is watered by the holy Mists and dropping Dews of the Spirit.
Now to the third sort, this word of Wisdom and Counsel doth greet them, whom we discern to be of a high and lofty stature, having shot forth their Branches in great lustre and glory, as having got beyond all declarative Revelations and Teachings, as not receiving or needing any but what their own center of Light will supply them withal, here-from inclining to slight what lies in bank and store with their fellow-Labourers for this same Treasure; to such this word is sent, that they carry it in great humility and lowliness of Mind, preferring each ones gift before, or as their own, maintaining all sweet and lovely Fellowship, with those of lower or higher degrees, in mutual Concord and Harmony, for the maintaining a holy Fraternity and spiritual Neighbourhood, although each Saint may have a full Provision and plentiful Portion of Spirit in themselves, so as they have no dependence on another, yet love is freely communitive, and disperseth it self in great variety, so as what one Saint is gifted and furnished with, the other may want of that sort and kind, and so a heavenly Traffick and Correspondency may be maintained, feeding and feasting with each other, on the various Fruits, as all springing from one Stock and Tree of Life; for it is experienced, that much increase of the holy Anointing hath flown forth by the converse and declaration of divine Inspirations, from one Saint to another, the which hath begotten a new and spiritual Generation, as in former Ages, so in this, sending forth divine sparks of Light and Love, for the gathering in of the holy Priestly Train, that are to make up the Temple-Glory, till the which shall come to be compleated, there will be all need of this holy inspiring Breath to be breathed from one to another, whether by vocal Voice, inspeaking or converse, as the holy Spirit shall go forth in its various operations, for the edifying of the Body of Love, for a holy Convocation to the Lord.
In the hopeful Expectation of which, I have been driven to disclose these great and deep secrets, being assured, That this Generation shall not pass away before there shall be a fulfilling of what hath been revealed & prophecied of in this little Tract; and blessed are they that shall have their lot and portion herein: There is a rich Bank, yet behind, from whence the oily Springs do fill, that may be emptied forth, when Vessels are made more fine, and ready thereof to take in; for the which we shall wait and seek to find some such for to partake of that rich and weighty Prize, that yet lieth in the secret & eternal Mine; for there is Valley deep, which under, the Water of Life doth lie, that will bring forth the fruitful Olive Plants, that shall be there fed and nourished hiddenly, till of a strong and full grown stature in Spirit and Power they may come for to be; then will they shew themselves to be the true Israel of God universally, that the Priestly Kingdom may come for to spread and flourish every where, in power and great glory, sealed with Mission of the holy Ghost, acting and going forth in signal miraculous working Powers, for confirmation of the truth of this Dispensation, in such a way as none shall resist, nor any dark Magician shall be able to counterfeit; for so strong and impregnable is the foundation of this Temple-body of glory, that neither Dragon, Beast, or false Prophet shall be able it to undermine, it being built and compact together of precious Sapphire Stones, transparent for Beauty and Glory: the Jasper Stone being both Foundation and Covering thereon, then will the shout of a King be heard in the Land of Salvation.
Oh! ye holy and elect of God, where-ever you have been hid, appear, if you have put on your anointed Shield, promote and help forward this royal Priesthood, wherein the lively express of the holy Ghost is to be manifested: Oh! that some such might be known, that hereto do give themselves, and mind no other thing, as the Lords approved Work-men, that may come to build up the inward Priestly Temple, whose Furniture and Glory shall be the Gifts and Powers of the Holy Ghost. And now, what have I more to do, but to wait in hope, that the pure flaming Spirit may henceforth go forth to gather in this Priestly Host, who, as in a wreathed Chain of Love, united may be inseparable, that so we may come to take our degrees of Prophets, Priests and Kings, for the making good what hath been in this Treatise revealed; which though in the form of a dead Letter, yet O God, as the Author hereof, did in the writing meet with a mighty flow of the anointing Presence; so let the same out-flowing Spring accompany such whom thou hast ordained to be taken into this holy Priestly Order, to which give thy Amen, O great High-Priest, to whom the Glory hereof doth belong. Even so let that Kingdom come into this World, that shall consist of Kings, Priests, and Prophets; with all such Righteous Plants, let the whole Earth be planted, for Joy and Praise to him who is the Ancient of Days. Hallelujah to him who is KING of Kings.
T H E E N D.
[This was File 3 of 3 ...of Jane Lead's Authentic Version of The Revelation of Revelations, 1683]
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