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shaken by the various floods and winds of tribulations and temptations he met with, both from within and without.
He was a lover of unity amongst brethren, and careful to promote and maintain it, shewing the example of a meek, courteous, and loving deportment, not only to Friends, but to all others, with whom he had conversation or dealings; so that it may be truly said, that few have lived so universally beloved and respected among us: and it was manifest this did not proceed from a desire of being popular, or to be seen of man: for his love and regard to peace did not divert him from the discharge of his duty in a faithful testimony to those that professed the truth, that they ought to be careful to maintain good works; and he was often concerned zealously to incite and press Friends to the exercise of the good order and discipline established in the wisdom of truth, by admonishing, warning, and timely treating with such as fell short of their duty therein, and by testifying against those who, after loving and brotherly care and endeavours, could not be brought to a sense and practice of their duty; and thereby he sometimes shared the ill-will and resentment of such persons.
The several essays he wrote on religious subjects at sea, are further proofs that his mind was principally engaged in the great business and concern of religion ; and as he continued under the same engagement to the end, we are fully
persuaded the words, with which he concluded his last public testimony on the island of Tortola, may be truly and properly applied to him, That he had “ fought a good fight, and had kept the faith,' and, we doubt not, he now enjoys
a crown of righteousness."
Much more might be truly said of his integrity, faithfulness and worth, but we do not think it necessary; our chief intention being to express our respectful remembrance of him, and our unity with his labours and services, and in order to assure those, to whom he was not personally known, of the truth of what he has himself wrote of his life and travels; for we believe, as he was a man signally influenced with the spirit of universal love and good-will to mankind, this was his chief motive for writing ; and we are sincerely desirous that his good design may be answered, and that the glory of every good and perfect work may be attributed to that Divine power alone, which can qualify others to supply the places of those faithful ministers and servants of Christ, who have been of late years removed from among us, and are of that number, of whom it is written, “ Blessed are the dead, which die in the Lord, from henceforth, yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours, and their works do follow them.” SIGNED on behalf, and by appointment of the
Monthly Meeting of Friends in Philadelphia, the Twenty-eighth day of the Second month, 1749, by
Birth-Education-Early religious impressions
Call to the Ministry--Visit to Friends in some parts of Great Britain -- and lo Friends in America-Return to England.
IIAving great cause to deknowledge the regard
and protection of Divine Providence in the several stages of my life, I think it may be of service to others, to leave behind me the following account of my life and travels :
was born on the third day of the third month, 1675, in Southwark, and descended of honest and religious parents, who were very careful of me, and brought me up in the fear of the Lord; and oftentimes counselled me to sobriety, and reproved me for wantonness; and that light spirit, which is incident to youth, they were careful to nip in the bud: so that I have cause to bless God, through Christ, on the behalf of my tender parents.
And I may not forget the dealings of God with me in my very tender years. When between eight and ten years of age, my father and mother sent me near two miles to school, to Richard Scoryer, in the suburbs of London. I went mostly by myself to the school; and many and various were the exercises I went through, by beatings and stonings along the streets, being distinguished to the people, (by the badge of plainness which my parents put upon me,) of what profession I was; divers telling me, it was no more sin to kill me, than it was to kill a dog.
About this time the Lord began to work strongly on my mind by his grace, insomuch that I could not forbear reproving those lads who would take the name of the Lord God in their mouths in vain; reminding them of the third commandment, 66 Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain; for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain ;” and of Christ's saying, “ Every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment;" for which I was mocked and derided by some, and others would sometimes refrain from such bad words when I reproved them.
One time I remember I was amongst some men, one of whom I had reproved, and he told the rest of it, and turned to me, and said, that I was no Christian, and asked me, when I said the Lord's prayer; I asked him, if he said it; he said, yes.
I then asked him how he could call God Father, and be so wicked as to swear and take God's name in vain, which I had heard him often do; and I told him what Christ said to the Jews, You are of your father the devil, because his works ye do; and that those that did the devil's work, could not truly call God Father, according to Christ's doctrine. So being convicted in their consciences that what I said was true, they were all silent, and wondered that I, being so young, should speak in such a manner; in which I remember I had great peace and good satisfaction: and from thenceforth these men let me alone.
Notwithstanding I hated to hear wicked words, I loved play exceedingly, being persuaded that there was no harm in that, if we used no bad words. One time I was at play at a neighbour's house with the children, and in the midst of my sport I was reached to with strong covictions, insomuch that I could not forbear weeping. The children's mother observing that I wept, said, “Why do you weep, Tommy?” I told her I could not tell, except it was because I was a naughty boy. “Oh !” said she,“ do not believe him, for that is the devil tells you so, for you are the best boy in all our street.” But I knew I was told the truth by conviction, and that she was mistaken: for I plainly understood by clear conviction, and by the Holy Scriptures, (which I had been trained up in the reading of, that I was too vain and wanton; for I loved music, dancing, and playing