Irenicum, to the lovers of truth and peace heart-divisions opened in the causes and evils of them : with cautions that we may not be hurt by them, and endeavours to heal them
Burroughs, Jeremiah, 1599-1646.
Page  186

The eleventh dividing Practice, To commend and countenance what we care not for, in opposition to what we dislike.

WHen such as professe godlinesse shall make much of wicked men, shall commend them, joyne with them, embrace them; yea, be well pleased with the bitternesse, boi∣sterousnesse, boldnesse of their daring spirits, because there may be use made of them against those men and wayes they differ from, this is an evill which brings guilt upon themselves, and makes the division between them and their Brethren very great: If your hearts be right, and your cause be good, you need not make use of any thing that is evill, to comfort your hearts, or to maintaine your cause: The Lord will not be beholding to the evill, the bitternesse of mens spirits, for the furtherance of his cause; and why should you? God will not take the wicked by the hand, neither shouldest thou: Are not your spirits strengthned against your adversaries, when you see them cal∣ling in Papists, and all manner of the refuse of men wicked and treacherous: Can you thinke that these are the most likely to maintaine the Protestant Religion, and the liberty of the Sub∣ject? Why doe you seek to strengthen your selves by stirring up vile men to joyne with you, such as heretofore your hearts were opposite to? How comes it to passe, you can close so lovingly now? You can smile one upon another, and shake hands together: How comes it to passe, you doe rejoyce the hearts of evill men; they encourage you, and you encourage them? Those unsavoury bitter expressions that come from them, you can smile at, and be well pleased with, because they are against such as differ from you; blow up that sparkle of in∣genuity that heretofore hath been in you; lay your hands upon your hearts, bethinke your selves, is it the Spirit of Jesus Christ, that acts us in such a way wherein we are? Surely, this is not the way of peace, but of division and confusion.