A letter from Mr. Marshall and Mr. Nye, appointed assistants to the commissioners of Scotland to their brethren in England, concerning the successe of their affaires there, partly concerning the covenant.
Marshall, Stephen, 1594?-1655., Nye, Philip, 1596?-1672.
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A LETTER FROM Mr. Marshall, and Mr. Nye, appoin∣ted Assistants to the Commissioners of SCOTLAND.

Reverend Friends,

WEE cannot but communicate unto you the good hand of God with us in the Worke we are im∣ployed in, our Commissioners have most indefatigably followed their businesse night and day, ha∣ving scarcely allowed themfelves time to eate or sleepe, and have had to doe with the Convention of States, and Assem∣bly of Divines, (both which we found happily sitting at the time of comming) the gravest and wisest that we have seene, and who we thinke are more sensible of our condition than we are our selves, the leading Page  2 men both of the Convention and Assembly, and (as farre as we can understand) even the whole body of the Nation looking upon it as the cause of Christ, and that they cannot but be ruined if we perish; we are ful∣ly and confidently perswaded they are generally resol∣ved to live and die with us in this quarrell against the Popish and Episcopall Faction, and for the Reforma∣tion of Religion according to the word; we know multitudes are prejudiced against them as if we might expect no helpe from them but for their owne ends, but if you dare give any credit to our faithfulnesse and most diligent inquisition and observation; (having op∣portunity of conversing with the holyest of our Bre∣thren their Ministers that are in the Kingdome) let us prevaile with you to beate downe all such unworthy thoughts and jealousies of them, they are guided by God in this worke, & we are perswaded will bring glo∣ry to Christ and requitall of all our former love to them. Some select men have debated with us of the most ready way to stirre up their people to come in rea∣dily, and they suggested and made it apparent that the joyning in a Covenant to be subscribed would take them all, and a forme was agreed upon, which when you see, you will easily discerne, hath beene drawne up with that warinesse as to expresse their desires as well as ours, that there might be no bogling at it. And when our Commissioners and the Commissioners of the Convention and Assembly had on Wednesday at night agreed upon the forme, it was the next day brought into the Generall Assembly, where we were present, and eye witnesses of what was done, where as a good introduction to it, the Letter from our Assem∣bly Page  3 was first read, and entertained with great accepta∣tion, (the Moderator solemnely professed that it deser∣ved oft to be read amongst them) & then the businesses of the Covenant was propounded, and the forme read twice over. There were present betweene twenty and thirty of their prime Nobility, we thinke neer a hun∣dred Noble men and Divines spoke to the businesse before it was Voted, no man speaking against it, ex∣cept the Kings Commissioner, who was answered and dealt with, with that wisedome, freedome, and re∣solution both by Nobles and Divines as your heart can thinke, though he professed that as a private man he liked it, and said after the Voting he heard a joyfull sound. In fine it was Voted and agreed to be entered into (for substance, for it was by the Moderator declared it was the substance intended and not expressions or words) assoone as they heard their Brethren in Eng∣land agree upon it; we say their brethen, not limiting it to the Parliament, which possibly may not be fitting. And when you have agreed it (as we hope you will) we are perswaded the body of the Kingdome of Scotland will live and die with you, and we doubt not but they will be preparing speedily upon expe∣ctation of the Covenants passing amongst you. We scarce ever saw so much of Christ for us as this day in the Assemblies carrying of this businesse, such weeping, such rejoycing, such resolution, such pathe∣ticall expressions, as we confesse hath much refresh∣ed our hearts, before extremely sadded with ill newes from our deare Countrey; And hath put us in good hope that this Nation (who set about this businesse as becommeth the worke of God and the saving of Page  4 Kingdomes) shall be the meanes of lifting up of di∣stressed England and Ireland. We are perswaded that the most dejected and sad heart amongst you would have the same thoughts we are now possessed with, if they were with us; we thinke twenty thousand of them will come to your helpe rather then faile. And againe we say we hope you will quickly see a good Army with you; yea, something done before, or as soone as these Letters come at you: continue with all earnestnesse as you were wont in seeking God, and be not discouraged, or suffer your spirits to languish; surely the arme of the Lord in this assistance extends it selfe towards you, In the Mount the Lord will be seene. Some of these reverend and godly Ministers are comming to our Assembly; we shall not neede to intreate you to give them the right hand of fellowship, nor will we relate in what a hear∣ty respectfull way we have beene received by them both in publike and private. We forbeare to write any more because this Bearer will acquaint you with our affaires, (and distribute our respects amongst you) and his hast alloweth us no more time, but to com∣mit you to the grace of God, and subscribe our selves.

From Edenburgh, Aug. 18. 1643.

Your most affectionate and deare Brethren,

  • Stephen Marshall.
  • Philip Nye.