THat woman that propounded the first question ac∣cording * to appointment by another man (2. Trea∣tise, p. 6. hujus p. 4.) moved this also.
When my heart prayeth with my husband praying, is this praying to God aright?
This woman kept at home, learned quickly to spinne well, held her children to labour, after she submitted to the Gospel her life was exemplary, she died of a sick∣nesse taken in childbed; Mr. Elliot visited her severall times, prayed with her, asked her about her spirituall estate, she said she still loved God though he made her sicke, and was resolved to pray unto him as long as she lived, and to refuse Powawing, shee believed God * would pardon all her sinnes, because Jesus Christ dyed for her, that God was well pleased in him, that she was willing to die, believed shee should goe to heaven, and live happy with God and Christ; of her owne accord she called her children, and said to them, I shall now die, and when I am dead, your grandfather, grandmo∣ther, and Unkles, &c. will send for you to live among them, and promise you great matters, but I charge you Page 119 doe not believe them, live not among them, for they pray not to God, keepe not the Sabbath, commit all manner of sinnes, and are not punisht; but I charge you live here, for they pray to God, his word is taught, sins are supprest, and punish'd by lawes, therefore I charge you live here all your daies, she died, and it fell out as she said. Tis observed many other Indians would come in, but they have neither tooles nor skill to sence * in their grounds, if the word were constantly taught, government exercised, encouragements for the industri∣ous, with meanes to instruct them in letters, trade and labour, as building, fishing, flax, hemp, &c. many well∣minded Indians would thus be drawne together. Mr. Elliot stirres up the Ministers to learne the language, and assist in the worke, there is nothing else to invite but the good of soules, not so much as meate, drinke, and lodging to be had among the Indians, but such as wee must carry with us, beside what wee give away to them, &c.
Severall questions they then propounded. *
Doth the Devill dwell in us, as we dwell in an house?
When God saith honour thy Father and thy Mother, doth he meane three Fathers, our Father, our Sachim, and God?
When a soule goes to heaven what doth it say? And what saith a wicked soule when it comes to hell?
Why did Christ die in our steads?
Why must we love our enemies, and how shall we do it?
How doth Christ redeeme and deliver us from sin, when e∣very day my heart thinkes I must die, and goe to Hell for my sins, what shall I doe in this case?
How long was Adam good before he sinned?
If two families dwell in one house, one prayeth, the other Page 120 doth not, what shall they that pray do to them that pray not?
Now the Indians desire to go to heaven, what shall we doe that we may goe thither when we die?
How shall I bring my heart to love prayer?
Doe not Englishmen spoile their soules to say a thing cost them more than it did, and is it not all one as to steale?
I see why I must feare hell, and do so every day, but why must I fear God?
If I reprove a man for sin, and he answer why do you speak thus angerly, Mr. Elliot teacheth us to love one another, is this well?
If a wife put away her husband because he will pray to God and she will not, what must be done in this case? May such wo∣men as pray to God, marry those that do not pray to God?
If my wife doth some worke on the night before the Sab∣bath, and on the Sabbath night also, is it a sin?
If I do that which is a sin, and know it not to be a sin, what will God say to that?
Whether is faith set in my heart or in my minde?
Why have not beasts a soule as well as man, seeing they have*love, anger, &c. as man hath?
Why doth God punish in hell for ever, man doth not so, but af∣ter a time lets out of prison againe?
What is faith?
How shall I know when God accepts my prayers?
How doth Christ make peace betwixt God and man, what is the meaning of that point?
In wicked dreames doth the soule sin?
Doth the soule in heaven know things done here on earth?
If my heart be full of evill thoughts, and I repent and pray, and a few houres after it be full againe, and I repent and pray againe, and after this it be full of evill thoughts again, what will God say?
Page 121What force of wicked men is lawfull, and what not?
What if a Minister weare long haire, as some other men do, what will God say?
Why doth God so hate them that teach others to commit sinne?
If a man will make his daughter marry one she doth not love, what will God say? &c.
There be sundry of them begin to enquire after Bap∣tisme and Church Ordinances, and Mr. Elliot with con∣sideration speakes solemnly not suddenly, nor lightly, but before the Lord, As I apprehend, saith he, in my conscience, were they but in a setled way of civility and government, cohabiting together, and I called, accor∣ding to God, to live among them, I durst freely joyne into Church fellowship with them, and could find out at least twenty men and women in some measure fitted of the Lord for it. That Indian that was Mr Elliots In∣terpreter, and first taught him words, was joyning him∣selfe to the Church of Dorchester, and the very day of this writing was the day for the triall of that Indian in order to his admission, and this was 2. of the 12. 1648. Since which time these labourers with the Lord have not been idle in this Vineyard, they are digging, and fencing, and gathering out the stones thereof, and plan∣ting it with the choisest vine, &c. Esa. 5. 2. and though some informations of their happy endeavours have un∣happily miscarried, there be other passages that have arrived hither, to give us assurance that they wax not faint in that Gospel worke, they are not indeed yet printed, but I have obtained leave to give the Reader a little taste thereof, for as we here long to understand what further foot steps be made, so the discoveries there∣of will in due time and better manner be recommended.
Page 122 Mr Elliot in the beginning of the last spring prepared for his journey among the Indians, to a great fishing * place upon Merimak, and hired an Indian to mark trees, and pilot him thither, which he did, with the helpe of some Indians, they passed by other of the Natives, who had heard of his preaching, and were very glad of his comming that way, but sicknesse prevented him at that time; howbeit upon his recovery, he went to another place call'd Pantuket, where from all parts they meet, there he asked them if those Indians were desirous to pray to God, and when they said yea, he demanded how many desired it, they answered Wamee, i. e. all. The chiefe Sachim of this place had heard him before, and now shewed great affection to him, and the word of God, using many arguments to perswade him to tarry among them, saying, his comming but once a yeere did them little good, it was as if one should come and throw a fine thing among them, and they like it well, but can∣not tell what is within, whether something, or nothing, but if it be opened and they see it precious, they should believe it, &c.
Another Indian learning from Mr. Elliot that hee had five sonnes, asked him if they should all teach the Indians to know God, as he did, which when hee affir∣med, the other was well pleased, and Mr. Elliot him∣selfe much encouraged, for hee had often dedicated them in his prayers to that service of the Lord, desi∣ring no better preferment for them, than to be fitted for that worke, hee endeavours therefore with that smal meanes he hath to traine them up in learning, and God will I doubt not raise up some liberall hearts and hands to assist him therein.
This summer hee was making another journey, but Page 123 in regard of some quarrells among the Indians, the Church was doubtfull at first of his going, which when the Nashaway Sachim heard, he took twenty men armed after their manner, and was his guard, with many o∣ther neerer Indians, so much do they hunger after instru∣ction; this was a long journey into the wildernesse of sixty miles, it proved very wet and tedious, so that hee was not dry three or foure daies together night nor day, but the Lord upheld him and his company in strength and health. One of the Indians would needs know of Mr Elliot the reason why they that pray to God, love the Indians so doing, more than their owne Brethren, and when the rest of them said they all found it so in their hearts, this gave him occasion to discourse to them of the unity of the spirit. They propounded questions.
If a man know Gods word, but believe it not, and yet teach others, is that good teaching, and if others believe that tea∣ching, is that good believing?
And when Mr. Elliot asked them How they could tell, when a man knoweth Gods word, and doth not believe it, they answered, When he doth not in his practise answerable to that he knoweth.
If I teach on the Sabbath that which you taught us, and forget something, is that a sin?
What should I pray for at night, what at morning, and what on the Sabbath day?
What is true repentance, and how shall I know when it is true?
How must I waite on God?
When I pray for a soft heart, why is it still hard?
Can one be saved by reading the booke of the creature?
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Page 124VVhat is the meaning of the name Hebrews, why doth God say he is the God of the Hebrews?
If one purpese to pray, and die before that time, wither go∣eth his soule?
Doth God know who shall repent and believe, and who not? why then did God use so much meanes with Pharaoh?
VVhat meanes that, Blessed are they that mourne?
VVhat meaneth lifting up hands to God?
VVhat anger is good, and what is bad?
If a child die before he sin, whither goeth his soule?
If one that prayes to God sin, like him that prayes not, is not he worse?
And while they discoursed of this, and about hating of wicked persons, one of them said, they must love the man and doe him good, but hate his sin, &c. For I will not forestall but prepare the publication of those other remarkeable occurrences; and now ex pede Herculem, when this little of those many matters worthy of obser∣vation, is seen together, none will call it a day of small things, Zach. 4. 10. Shall we call this a day of small things? Shall not those poore Natives in New England rise up in judgement against Old England and condemne it? they at once or twice preaching of the Law and Gospel, repent, and weepe, and pray, and heare, and most ear∣nestly enquire after God; but wee, when the Sunshine of truth hath been so long cleare among us, degenerate into those very sinnes which they abandon and detest, and with indignation say, get ye hence, Es. 30. 22.
They willingly forsake their Powawing, and inchant∣ments; but the devill is broke loose among us, and ma∣ny desire commerce with those that have familiarity with him.
The Indians set a mulct upon those women that tie *Page 125 not up their haire, that goe with naked breasts, what would they say, what would they doe, if that sex were as immodest as some in this Nation, bepainted, bedau∣bed, debauched, not more with spots in their faces, then stains in their glory, if Christianity be to them any honour?
The Indians weare their haire comely as the English, * and punish those that doe otherwise; there be among us that would account it piacular it should be said of them that in the least they looke Rome-wards, yet like those locusts having the faces of men, they have haire as the hair of women, Rev. 9. 8. grace is pleased to borrow that from nature, if a man have long haire, it is a shame to him, 1 Cor. 11. 14.
Those Natives surely will rise up in judgement with the men of this generation and condemne them; they pray in their families morning and evening, and upon other occasions, they sanctifie the sabbath; wee have those among us, that scoffe and scorne these practises of piety, and call the practisers thereof Duty-mon∣gers.
The Indians desire publique meetings, and delight in the places where God is worship'd and his word is taught; but there be those in this England that make it a great piece of religion to divide and separate, though God himselfe would not have us forsake the assembling of our selves together, as the manner of some is, Hebr. 10. 25.
The Indians asked Mr. Elliot, if any teach us good things should wee not love him as a father, or a brother? * but tis now among some esteemed a signe of grace, and a badge of holinesse, to despise their teachers, as if that Scripture of truth were never againe to be fulfilled. Page 126They mocked the Messengers of God, and despised his words, and misused his Prophets, untill the wrath of the Lord arose against his peaple, till there was no remedy, 1 Chron. 36. 16. But many other be the sad symptomes of our Englands defection and danger, and our God hath made himself many waies marvelous in New-Eng∣land, Wee cannot call it a day of small things, Or if at first it was like a little cloud arising out of the sea as a mans hand, 1 King. 18. 44. certainely it carried with it a a sound of abundance of raine, ver. 41. even that raine that commeth downe from heaven and returneth not thither but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater; Gods word hath not returned unto him void, it hath accomplished that which he pleased, and it shall prosper in the thing where∣to I send it, Es. 55. 10, 11.
Now the blessing of the God of Iacob be upon them and their endeavours, even the blessing of Iacob upon Ioseph, the God Almighty help them and blesse them with blessings of heaven above, blessings of the deep that lieth under, Gen. 49. 25, 26. That God by their meanes may say to the North give up, and to the South keepe not backe, bring my sonnes from farre, and my daughters from the ends of the earth, Esa. 43. 6. so from the uttermost parts shall we hear songs, songs of praise, even glory to the righteous, 24. 16. and not onely glory to the Lord our righteousnesse, but those that winne many to this righteousnesse shall shine as the starres for ever and ever, Dan. 12. 3. and not onely hereafter in that heaven of heavens, but this shall bee told as Englands memoriall, in present and succeeding generations, and those American Nations especially shall call them blessed (Mal. 3. 12.) yea the blessings of them that were ready to perish, will come upon them, Job 29. 13. Page 127 for they have done worthily in Ephrata, and are famous in Bethelem (Ruth 4. 11) and when they be indeed sen∣sible of this great mercy, they will not onely say, thanks be unto God for this unspeakeable gift, 2 Cor. 9. 15. But they will long to require this kindnesse to the English also: and as of old almost all Nations receiving from Ierusalem the first meanes of their. Christianity, expres∣sed their gratefull mindes by their charitable benefi∣cence upon all occasions to those that dwelt there, this began in the Apostles daies, Act. 11. 19. Rom. 15. 26. Those of Macedonia and Achaia distributed to the poor Saints at Ierusalem, so it was the use till Ieromesk time, that all the Churches of the Gentiles sent colle∣ctions to the Christians at Ierusalem, because they all from thence received first the glad tidings of the Gospel; where the same Christ is preached, there will be the like Christian affections, which likewise will be demon∣strable upon every possible opportunity.
Gregory in severall Epistles, not lesse then twenty foure, to the great personages of those times, shewes * much zeale in this kind, sometimes encouraging them, afterwards commending them for their assistance affor∣ded to that glorious worke, the first conversion of our Countreymen.
Nothing more shall now be added but the praise and practise of nAlbertus the Arch-Bishop of Hamburgh, who tooke upon him a resolution to visit in his owne person all the Northerne Provinces, not leaving so much as any one Island unbenefitted by his preaching; when all things were prepared, and his attendants chosen, and shipping ready, hee was diswaded by Zueno King of Denmarke, who told him those people would sooner be instructed by men of their owne Nation, who were Page 128 best acquainted with the rites, manners, and language thereof; the Arch-Bishop hereupon dealt earnestly with others to that purpose, and made them most wil∣ling to the work, for there was not a man among them whom hee had not encouraged, and by his bounty hee warmed their zeale in publishing the Gospell, frequent∣ly repeating that sentence of our Saviour, The harvest indeed is great, but the labourers are few, pray ye there∣fore the Lord of the harvest, that hee will send forth labou∣rers into his harvest, Mat. 9. 37. 38. Finally as David to Solomon in the bulding of the Temple, 1 Chr. 22. 16. I wish it were effectually spoken to, and by all the Eng∣lish here and there, Vp and be doing, and the Lord will bee with you.