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FAITH AND EXPERIENCE
Concerning God, Christ, the Spirit, the Holy Scriptures, the Gospel,
and doctrines thereof.
Also, the titular or nominal Christian's faith and profession examined, tried, and judged. Written for the confirmation and consolation of the one, and for the information; in order to the restoration and salvation, of the other.
With a few words concerning consciente, what, it is, how it became defiled, corrupted, and in bondage; and how it may become cleansed, purified, and set at liberty again; and what that liberty is.
To which is added a small treatise concerning evil thoughts and imaginations, and concerning good thoughts and heavenly meditations. With a few words concerning the life, state, and enjoyment of a true Christian.
As also his worship, wherein it stands, and how performed.
BY WILLIAM SHEWEN.
He is not a Jew that is one outwardly.-Rom. ii. 28.
He that hath a bride is the bridegroom.-Joh. iii. 29.
He that hath the son hath life, he that hath not the son hath not life.-Joh. v. 6.
Darkness is past, and the true light now shineth. 1 Joh. ii. 8.
The people that sat in darkness have seen a great light; they that dwell in the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined.-Isa. ix. 2.
Every one that doeth evil, hateth the light.-Joh. iii. 20, 21.
[LONDON] PRINTED 1684-5.
PHILADELPHIA, Reprinted anD PUBLISHED BY M. T. C. GOULD, 1830.
THE NEW YORK
Concerning God-Christ-The Holy Spirit-The Holy Scriptures-
TO THE READER.
FRIEND-Thou mayst know, that in this part of the world called Christendom, the name Christian is very famous, and that there are few therein but desire to be called by that name; and a high and great profession of Christianity abounds amongst the divers sects therein, all coveting the name of Christian: but the Christian life, the Christlike life, and the nature of Christianity is much wanting; and the fruits and effects of the holy spirit of Christianity are much wanting among them all, and the contrary much abounds, whereby an evil savour is sent forth to the nations round about, called heathens and infidels. For there is scarce any sort of wickedness to be found upon the face of the whole earth, which is not done and committed in this part of the world called Christendom, whereby the Jews and heathens, instead of being converted, are strengthened and confirmed in their infidelity, ignorance, blindness, and idolatry. For where this nominal or titular Christian hath prevailed, (as among the Americans,) he hath sent forth such a stink and ill savour, by his abominable inhuman practices, that the name of Christ is blasphemed, and the Christian religion hated by many that have heard the fame and report thereof.
Had the life of Christ, and the nature of Christianity been known and lived in, by all that profess the name, Christendom had been as a fruitful field, and as a pleasant garden enclosed, and as a vineyard walled about, full of trees of righteousness and plants of God's own right hand planting. And the tree of life would have flourished among them in the midst thereof, and the leaves of the same would have healed the nations round about. And it would have been as a city set upon a hill, which cannot be hid; and as a lamp that burneth, being fed with sweet oil; and as a glorious light that shineth: and many would have fled unto it, as unto a city of refuge, and have walked in the light thereof, and have seen and beheld their good works, and have glorified their Father which is in heaven. And they would have lain down as a flock of harmless lambs together, solacing themseves in the green pastures of life and salvation, in the low valley, and on the top of that holy mountain, where no destroyer is nor none can make afraid.* Where the lion eats straw like the ox,† and where the sucking child plays on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child puts his hand on the
* Isa. xi. 7, 8, 9.
† Isa. xxvi. 1, 2.