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phets, gives this testimony of it, in his narra- (which was no less than trying and murdering tive upon it, and his testimony is true ; “ that the king, proscribing his son, and voting down it was such a covenant, whether you respect monarchy; with much more, which he there the subject matter or occasion of it, or the says lay yet in the breast of the house) was persons that engaged in it, or lastly, the but a more refined pursuit of the desi_ns of manner of imposing it, that was never read the covenant. For the testimony of which nor heard of, nor the world ever saw the like.” person in this matter, I have thus much to The truth is, it bears no other likeness to say; that he who, having been sent comancient covenants, but that as at the making missioner from hence into Scotland, was the of them they slew beasts, and divided them, first author and contriver of the covenant so this also was solemnized with blood, there, was surely of all others the most likely slaughter, and division.
to know the true meaning of it; and being But that I may not accuse in general, with ready to die, was most likely then, if ever, to out a particular charge, read it over as it speak sincerely what he knew. stands before their synod's works, I mean We see here the doctrine of the covenant ; their catechism : to which it is prefixed, as if, see the use of this doctrine, as it was charged without it, their system of divinity were not home with a suitable application in a war complete, nor their children like to be well | raised against the king, in the cruel usage instructed, unless they were schooled to trea- and imprisonment, killing, sequestering, unson, and catechised to rebellion. I say, in the doing all who adhered to him, voting no covenant, as it stands there, in the third addresses to himself; all which horrid proarticle of it. After they had first promised to ceedings, though his majesty now stupendefend the privileges of parliament, and the dously forgives, yet the world will not, canliberties of the kingdoms, at length they vot ever forget ; for his indemnity is not our promise also a defence of the king ; but only oblivion. thus," that they will defend his person in the And therefore, for those persons who now preservation, and defence of the true religion clamour and cry out that they are persecuted, and liberties of the kingdoms.” In which it because they are no longer permitted to peris evident, that their promise of loyalty to secute; and who choose rather to quit their him is not absolute, but conditional; bound ministry, than to disown the obligation of the hand and foot with this limitation, “ so far as covenant; I leave it to all understanding, he preserved the true religion and liberties of impartial minds to judge, whether they do the kingdoms."
not by this openly declare to the world, that From which I observe these two things. they hold themselves obliged by oath, as they
1. That those who promise obedience to shall be able, to act over again all that has their king, only so far as he preserves the true been hitherto acted by virtue of that covenant; religion, and the kingdoms' liberties ; withal and consequently, that they relinquish their reserving to themselves the judgment of what places, not for being nonconformists to the religion is true, what false, and when these church, but for being virtually rebels to the liberties are invaded, when not; do by this
Which makes them just as worthy to put it within their power to judge religion be indulged, as for a man to indulge a dropsy false, and liberty invaded, as they think con or a malignant fever, which is exasperated by venient, and then, upon such judgment, to mitigations, and inflamed by every cooling absolve themselves from their allegiance. infusion.
2. That those very persons, who thus cove But to draw the premises closer to the purnant, had already, from pulpit and press, pose. Thus I argue. That which was the declared the religion and way of worship proper means, that enabled the king's mortal established in the church of England, and enemies to make a war against him, and upon then maintained by the king, to be popish that war to conquer, and upon that conquest and idolatrous; and withal, that the king had to imprison him, and lastly, upon that imactually invaded their liberties. Now, for prisonment inevitably put the power into the men to suspend their obedience upon a certain hands of those, who by that power in the condition, which condition at the same time end murdered him ; that, according to the they declared not performed, was not to pro- genuine consequences of reason, was the fess obedience, but to remonstrate the reasons natural cause of his murder. This is the proof their intended disobedience.
position that I assert, and I shall not trouble And for a farther demonstration of what myself to make the assumption. has been said, read the speech of that worthy And indeed those who wipe their mouths knight,* at his execution upon Tower-hill, on and lick themselves innocent, by clapping the 14th of June last. Where, in the third this act upon the army, make just the same page, he says, that what the house of commons plea that Pilate did for his innocence in the did in their acting singly, and by themselves, death of Christ, because he left the execution
to the soldiers; or that the soldiers themselves * Sir Henry Vane.
may make, for clearing themselves of all the
Llood that they have spilt, by charging it upon in dens, and have their extraction from under their swords.
ground. These therefore were the worthy I conclude therefore, that this was the judges and condemners of a great king, even gradual process to this horrid fact; this the the refuse of the people, and the very scum of train laid, to blow up monarchy; this the step the nation; that is, at that time both the by which the king ascended the scaffold. uppermost and the basest part of it.
III. Come we now in the third place to IV. Pass we now, in the fourth place, to the shew, who were the actors in this tragical circumstances and manner of procedure in the scene: when, through the anger of Providence, management of this ugly fact. And circuma thriving army of rebels had worsted justice, stances, we know, have the greatest cast in cleared the field, subdued all opposition and determining the nature of all actions ; (as we risings, even to the very insurrections of con commonly judge of any man's port and quascience itself; so that impunity grew at length lity by the nature of his attendants.) into the reputation of piety, and success gave First of all then, it was not done, like other rebellion the varnish of religion ; that they works of darkness, in secret, nor (as they used might consummate their villainy, the gown to preach) in a corner, but publicly, coloured was called in to complete the execution of the with the face of justice, managed with opensword ; and, to make Westminster-hall a ness and solemnity, as solemn as the league place for taking away lives, as well as estates, and covenant itself. History indeed affords a new court was set up, and judges packed, us many examples of princes who have been who had nothing to do with justice, but so far clandestinely murdered; which, though it be as they were fit to be the objects of it. In villainous, yet is in itself more excusable; which they first of all begin with a confuta- he wlio does such a thing in secret, by the tion of the civilians' notion of justice and very manner of his doing it, confesses himself jurisdiction, it being with them no longer an ashamed of the thing he does; but he who act of the supreme power, as it was ever be- acts it in the face of the sun, vouches his acfore defined to be. Such an inferior crew, tion for laudable, glorious, and heroic. such a mechanic rabble were they, having not Having thus brought him to their high so much as any arms to shew the world, but court of justice, (so called, I conceive, because what they wore and used in the rebellion, that justice was there arraigned and condemned ; when I survey the list of the king's judges, or perhaps therefore called a court of justice, and the witnesses against him, I seem to have because it never shewed any mercy, whether before me a catalogue of all trades, and such the cause needed it or no,) there, by a way of as might better have filled the shops in West trial as unheard of as their court, they permit minster-hall, than sat upon the benches. him not so much as to speak in his own deSome of which came to be possessors of the fence, but with the innocence and silence of king's houses, who before had no certain a lamb condemn him to the slaughter. And dwelling but the king's highway. And some it bad been well for them, if they could as might have continued tradesmen still, had easily have imposed silence upon his blood as not want, and inability to trade, sent them
upon himself. to a quicker and surer way of traffick, the Being condemned, they spit in his face,
and deliver him to the mockery and affronts Now, that a king, that such a king, should of soldiers. So that I wonder where the be murdered by such, the basest of his sub- blasphemy lies, which some charge upon those jects, and not like a Nimrod, (as some sancti who make the king's sufferings something to fied, railing preachers have called him,) but, resemble our Saviour's. But is it blasphemy like an Actæon, be torn by a pack of blood to compare the king to Christ in that respect hounds; that the steam of a dunghill should in which Christ himself was made like him? thus obscure the sun; this so much enhances or can he be like us in all things, and we not the calamity of this royal person, and makes like him? Certainly there was something in his death as different from his who is con that providence which so long ago appointed quered and slain by another king, as it is be- | the chapter of our Saviour's passion to be read tween being torn by a lion, and being eaten on the day of the king's. And I am sure the up with vermin : an expression too proper,
resemblance is so near, that had he lived I am sure, as coarse as it is : for where we are before him, he might have been a type of speaking of beggars, nothing can be more him. I confess there is some disparity in the natural than to think of vermin too.
case ; for they shew themselves worse than For that the feet should trample upon, nay Jews. But however, since they make this kick off the head, who would not look upon their objection, that we make the king like it as a monster ? But, indeed, of all others, Christ, I am willing it should be the greatest these were the fittest instruments for such a of their commendation to be accounted as work : for base descent and poor education unlike Christ as they meritoriously are. disposes the mind to imperiousness and Let us now follow him from their mock cruelty; as the most savage beasts are bred | tribunal to the place of his residence till exe
cution. Nothing remains to a person con ning to disappear in the execution, and perdemned, and presently to leave the world, haps the good luck to be preferred after it, but these two things, — 1. To take leave of and (for ought I know) for it too. And as his friends, a thing not denied to the vilest for those who now survive, by a mercy as malefactors ; which sufficiently appears, in incredible as their crime, which has left them that it has not been denied to themselves. to the soft expiations of solitude and repenYet no entreaties from him or his royal con tance, (with plenty too attending both ;) sort could prevail with the murderers to let though usually all the professions such make her take the last farewell and commands of a of repentance are nothing else but the faint dying husband; he was permitted to make no resentments of a guilty horror, the convulfarewell, but to the world. Thus was he sions and last breathings of a gasping contreated, and stript of all, even from the preroga- science ; and as the mercy by which they live tive of a prince to the privilege of a malefactor. is made a visible defiance to government, and 2. The next thing desired by all dying per- a standing encouragement to these daily sons is freedom to converse with God, and to alarms of plots and conspiracies ; so I beseech prepare themselves to meet him at his great God, that even their supposed repentance be tribunal; but with an Italian cruelty to the not such, that both themselves and the kingsoul as well as the body, they debar him of dom may hereafter have bitter cause too late this freedom also ; and even solitude, his to repent of it. But if they should indeed former punishment, is now too great an en prove such as have no conscience but horror; joyment. But that they might shew them- who, by the same crimes will be made irreselves no less enemies to private, than they concileable, for which they deserved to be had been to public prayer, they disturb liis impardonable ; who would resume those reretirements, and with scoffs and contumelies pentings upon opportunity, which they made upbraid those devotions which were then even on extremity; and being saved from the galinterceding for them. And I question not lows, make the usual requital which is made but fanatic fury was then at that height, that for that kind of deliverance : I say, if such they would have cven laughed at Christ him persons should be only for a time chained and self in bis devotions, had he but used liis own tied up, like so many lions or wolves in the prayer.
Tower, that they may gather more fierceness With these preludiums is he brought to the to run out at length upon majesty, religion, last scene of mockery and cruelty, to a stage laws, churches, and the universities; whether erected before his own palace; and for the God intends by this a repetition of our forgreater affront of majesty, before that part of mer confusions, or a general massacre of our it in which he was wont to display his royalty, persons, (which is the most likely,) the Lord and to give audience to ambassadors, where in mercy fit and enable us to endure the now he could not obtain audience himself in smart of a misimproved providence, and the his last addresses to his abused subjects. There, infatuate frustration of such a miraculous he receives the fatal blow, there he dies, con deliverance. quering and pardoning his enemies ; and at But to return to this sacred martyr. We length finds that faithfully performed upon have seen him murdered ; and is there now the scaffold, which was at first so frequently any other scene for cruelty to act? Is not and solemnly promised him in the parliament, death the end of the murderer's malice, as and perhaps in the same sense, that he should well as of the life of him who is murdered? be made a glorious king.
No; there is another and a viler instance of But even this death was the mercy of mur- | their sordid, implacable cruelty. derers, considering what kinds of death several In the very embalming his body, and taking proposed, when they sat in consultation about out those bowels, (which, had they not rethe manner of it; even no less than the gib- lented to his enemies, had not been so handled,) bet and the halter : no less than to execute they gave order to those to whom that work him in his robes, and afterwards drive a stake was committed diligently to search aud see (I through his head and body, to stand as a speak it with horror and indignation) whether monument upon his grave. In short, all those his body were pot infected with some loathkinds of death were proposed, which either some disease.* I suppose they meant that their malice could suggest, or their own guilt which some of his judges were
so much deserve.
troubled with, and which stuck so close to And could these men now find in their them. hearts, or have the face to desire to live, and Now every one must easily see, that for to plead a pardon from the son, who had thus them to intimate the inquiry was, in effect, murdered the father? I speak not only of to enjoin the report. And here let any one those wretches who openly imbrued their judge, whether the remorseless malice of im. hands in the bloody sentence, but of those bittered rebels ever rose to such a height of more considerable traitors who had the villainy tyranny, that the very embalming of his body to manage the contrivance, and yet the cun • Gregory Clement knew what the disease was.
must needs be a means to corrupt his name; be regarded before his words. And the Latin as if his murder was not complete, unless, advocate, * who, like a blind adder, has spit together with his life, they did also assassinate so much poison upon the king's person and his fame and butcher his reputation.
cause, speaks to the matter roundly: "Deum But the body of that prince, innocent and sicuti ducem, et impressa passim divina virtuous to a miracle, had none of the ruins vestigia venerantes, viam haud obscuram, sed and gentile rottenness of our modern debau- illustrem, et illius auspiciis commonstratam chery. It was firm and clear, like his con et patefactam ingressi sumus.”+ But must science; he fell like a cedar, no less fragrant we read God's mind in his footsteps, or in his than tall and stately. Rottenness of heart word? This is as if, when we have a man's and rottenness of bones are the badges of some hand-writing, we should endeavour to take of his * murderers; the noisomeness of whose his meaning by the measure of his foot. carcasses, caused by the noisomeness of their But still, conscience, conscience is pleaded lives, might even retaliate and revenge their as a covering for all enormities, an answer sufferings, and, while they are under execu to all questions and accusations. Ask what tion, poison the executioner.
made them fight against, imprison, and murBut the last grand, comprehensive circum- der their lawful sovereign ? Why, conscience. stance of this fact, which is, as it were, the What made them extirpate the government, very form and spirit which did actuate and and pocket the revenue of the church? Conrun through all the rest, is, that it was done science. What made them perjure themselves with the pretences of conscience and the pro with contrary oaths? what makes swearing testations of religion ; with eyes lift up to a sin, and yet forswearing to be none ? what heaven, and expostulations with God, pleas made them lay hold on God's promises, and of providence and inward instigations; till at break their own ? Conscience. What made length, with much labour and many groans, them sequester, persecute, and undo their they were delivered of their conceived mischief. brethren,
rape their estates, ruin their families, And certainly we have cause to deplore this get into their places, and then say, they only murder with fasting, if it were but for this robbed the Egyptians? Why still this large reason, that it was contrived and committed capacious thing, their conscience; which is with fasting. Every fast portended some always of a much larger compass than their villainy, as still a famine ushers in a plague. understanding. In a word, we have lived But as hunger serves only for appetite, so they under such a model of religion, as has counted never ordained a humiliation, but for the nothing impious but loyalty, nothing absurd doing of something, which, being done, might but restitution. dine them at a thanksgiving. And such a But, o blessed God, to what a height can fury did absurd piety inspire into this church prosperous, audacious impiety arise! Was it militant upon these exercises, that we might not enough that men once crucified Christ, as well meet a hungry bear as a preaching but that there should be a generation of men colonel after a fast; whose murderous humi- who should also crucify Christianity itself? liations strangely verified that apposite pro Must he who taught no defence but patience, phecy in Isaiah, viii. 21, “ When they shall allowed no armour but submission, and never be hungry, they shall curse their king and warranted any man to shed any other blood their God, and look upwards ;" that is, they but his own, be now again mocked with should rebeland blaspheme devoutly. Though, soldiers, and vouched the patron and author by the way, he who is always looking up- of all those hideous murders and rebellions, wards can little regard how he walks below. which an ordinary impiety, would stand
But was there any thing in the whole book amazed at the hearing of ? and which in this of God to warrant this rebellion ? any thing world he has so plainly condemned by his which, instead of obedience, taught them to word, and will hereafter as severely sentence sacrifice him whom they were to obey? Why in his own person ? Certainly, these monsters yes: Daniel “dreamed a dream ;” and here are not only the spots of Christianity, but so is also something in the Revelation, concern many standing exceptions from humanity and ing a “beast, a little horn, and the fifth vial,” | nature : and since most of them are Anabapand therefore the king undoubtedly ought to tists, it is pity that, in repeating their bapdie. But if neither you nor I can gather so tism, they did not baptize themselves into much, or any thing like it, from these places, another religion. they will tell us, it is because we are not in V. For the fifth and last place, let us view wardly enlightened.
the horridness of the fact in the fatal conseBut others, more knowing, though not less quences which did attend it. Every great wicked, insist not so much upon the warrant villainy is like a great absurdity, drawing of Scripture, but plead providential dispensa- after it a numerous train of homogeneous contions : and then God's works, it seems, must
+ In Præfat. ad Defensionem pro Populo Anglicano, (as his * Clement, Peters, &c.
Latin is. )
sequences; and none ever spread itself into subjects, never enduring so much as to more than this. But I shall endeavour to think of their lawful sovereign, till at length reduce them all to these two sorts.
the danger of tithes, their unum necessarium, 1. Such as were of a civil,
scared them back to their allegiance. 2. Such as were of a religious concern.
I speak not therefore of these. But the 1. And first, for the civil, political conse great destructive consequence of this fact was, quences of it.
that it has left a lasting slur upon the protesThere immediately followed a change of tant religion. “Tell it not in Gath, publish government, of a government whose praise it not in Askelon, lest the daughters of the had been proclaimed for many centuries, and Philistines triumph," lest the Papacy laugh enrolled in the large fair characters of the us to scorn; as, if they had no other sort of subject's enjoyment and experience. It was Protestants to deal with, I am sure they well now shred into a democracy; and the stream might. of government being cut into many channels, I confess, the seditious writings of some ran thin and shallow : whereupon the subject who called themselves Protestants, have suffihaving many masters, every servant had so ciently bespattered their religion. See Calvin many distinct servitudes.
warranting the three estates to oppose their But the wheel of Providence, which only prince, 4 Instit. ch. 20. sect. 31. See Master they looked upon, and that even to a giddi Knox's Appeal, and in that his arguments ness, did not stop here ; but by a fatal, ridicu for resisting the civil magistrate. Read Mr lous vicissitude, both the power and wicked Buchanan's
discourse de jure regni apud Scotos. ness of those many was again revolved, and Read the Vindiciæ contra Tyrannos, under the compacted into one: from that one * again it name of Junius Brutus, writ by Ottoman the returned to many, with several attending civilian. See Pareus upon the thirteenth variations, till at length we pitched upon chapter of the epistle to the Romans, where one t again, one beyond whom they could he states atrocem aliquam injuriam, a large not the ne plus ultra of all regal excellency, term, and of very easy application, to be a as all change tends to, and at last ceases upon sufficient reason for subjects to take up arms its acquired perfection.
against their king. A book, instead of the Nor was the government only, but also author, most deservedly burnt by the hangthe glory of the English nation changed; man. But shall we call this a comment upon distinction of orders confounded, the gentry the thirteenth chapter of the epistle to the outbraved, and the nobility, who voted the Romans? It is rather a comment upon the bishops out of their dignities in parliament, covenant. Both of which, as they teach the by the just judgment of God thrust out them same doctrine, so they deserved, and justly selves, and brought under the scorn and im had the same confutation.t perious lash of a beggar on horseback ; But these principles, like sleeping lions,
learning discountenanced, and the univer lay still a great while, and were never comsities threatened, their revenues to be sold, pletely actuate, nor appeared in the field, their colleges to be demolished ; the law to be till the French holy league and the English reformed after the same model; the records rebellion. of the nation to be burnt.” Such an inun Let the powder-plot be as bad as it will or dation and deluge of ruin, reformation, and can, yet still there is as much difference confusion had spread itself upon the whole between the king's murder and that, as there land, that it seemed a kind of resemblance of is between an action and an attempt. What Noah's deluge, in which only a few men sur the papal bulls and anathemas could not do, vived amongst many beasts.
factious sermons have brought about. What 2. The other sort of consequences were of was then contrived against the parliament a religious concernment. I speak not of the house, has been since done by it. What the contempt, rebuke, and discouragement lying papists
' powder intended, the soldiers' match upon the divines, or rather the preachers § of has effected. I say, let the powder-treason be those days; for they brought these miseries looked upon (as indeed it is) as the product upon themselves, and had more cause a great of hell, as black as the souls and principles deal to curse their own seditious sermons that hatched it; yet still this reformationthan to curse Meroz. They sounded the first murder will preponderate; and January, in trumpet to rebellion, and, like true saints, villainy, always have the precedency of had the grace to persevere in what they first November. began; courting and recognizing an usurper, And thus I have traced this accursed fact calling themselves his loyal and obedient through all the parts and ingredients of it.
And now, if we reflect upon the quality of
the person upon whom it was done, the con† King Charles II. # All this was Sir Henry Vane's villainous and monstrous • Baxter in his book dedicated to Richard Cromwell did so.
+ Burnt by the common hangipan in Oxon, by command of $ Presbyterians and Independents.
King James the First.